Posted by: biblestudyseattle | June 5, 2021

Life then Judgment

“And just as it is destined for people to die once, and after this comes judgment, so Christ also, having been offered once to bear the sins of many, will appear a second time for salvation without reference to sin, to those who eagerly await Him.” Hebrews 9:27-28

Does this mean an infant that died at one week old faces judgment for their eternal condition? What about Lazarus? He was revived after being dead four days. Was he then judged for eternity? No. He had to die a second time! And how does Jesus’ singular sacrifice relate to our lives? The most common immediate assumption is that we live and then are judged for an eternal condition of heaven or death. Paul does not say what happens after judgment. Jesus mentions second death four times in Revelation. Second death implies second life. And what does judgment mean? Most think of a sentencing or a verdict in a court case. But doesn’t judgment include a trial before the verdict? Perhaps the judgment includes a trial life? How do we explain “For the youth will die at the age of a hundred, And the one who does not reach the age of a hundred Will be thought accursed.”? Isaiah 65:20

Someone who dies at a hundred today is mostly certainly not considered a youth. “For as the lifetime of a treeso will be the days of My people,” Isaiah 65:22

What if the judgment lasts 700 years? Is that possible? Why did those before Noah live so long? Even in our day, Giant Sequoias live forever unless they are cut off from their roots. Why are the trees of life returned in the time Ezekiel talks about? “And by the river on its bank, on one side and on the other, will grow all kinds of trees for food. Their leaves will not wither and their fruit will not fail. They will bear fruit every month because their water flows from the sanctuary, and their fruit will be for food and their leaves for healing.” Ezekiel 47:12

We tend to think of things happening suddenly, “in the twinkling of an eye.” We tend to think of the second coming, the judgment, and the resurrection happening this way. While some things do happen instantaneously, as the healing of the official’s son: “Therefore He came again to Cana of Galilee, where He had made the water into wine. And there was a royal official whose son was sick at Capernaum.  When he heard that Jesus had come from Judea into Galilee, he went to Him and began asking Him to come down and heal his son; for he was at the point of death.  Then Jesus said to him, “Unless you people see signs and wonders, you simply will not believe.”  The royal official *said to Him, “Sir, come down before my child dies.”  Jesus *said to him, “Go; your son is alive.” The man believed the word that Jesus spoke to him and went home.  And as he was now going down, his slaves met him, saying that his son was alive.  So he inquired of them the hour when he began to get better. Then they said to him, “Yesterday at the seventh hour the fever left him.”  So the father knew that it was at that hour in which Jesus said to him, “Your son is alive”; and he himself believed, and his entire household.  This is again a second sign that Jesus performed when He had come from Judea into Galilee.”, John 4:46-54

Other things take time, often a lot of time. “I am coming quickly; hold firmly to what you have, so that no one will take your crown.” Revelation 3:11 This was spoken almost 2,000 years ago; Jesus concept of ‘soon’ must be long!

Posted by: biblestudyseattle | June 1, 2021

Noah Redux 2

When most Christians think of the second coming, they probably think of a dramatic day where Jesus suddenly appears in the clouds and in short order destroys the bad guys and saves the good. While there is truth in this view, it is our view that the second coming will have at least three major phases: The first stealthy phase where, “The kingdom of God is not coming with signs that can be observed;” Luke 17:20 The second phase is when Joseph [Jesus] reveals himself to his brothers, “Then Joseph could not control himself in front of everyone standing before him, and he shouted, “Have everyone leave me!” So there was no one with him when Joseph made himself known to his brothers.  Then he wept so loudly that the Egyptians heard it, and the household of Pharaoh heard about it.  And Joseph said to his brothers, “I am Joseph! Is my father still alive?” But his brothers could not answer him, for they were terrified in his presence.” Genesis 45:1-3 The third is at the Day of Atonement, when “Behold, a day is coming for the Lord when the spoils taken from you will be divided among you.  For I will gather all the nations against Jerusalem to battle, and the city will be taken, the houses plundered, the women raped, and half of the city exiled, but the rest of the people will not be eliminated from the city.  Then the Lord will go forth and fight against those nations, as when He fights on a day of battle.  On that day His feet will stand on the Mount of Olives, which is in front of Jerusalem on the east; and the Mount of Olives will be split in its middle from east to west forming a very large valley. Half of the mountain will move toward the north, and the other half toward the south.  And you will flee by the valley of My mountains, for the valley of the mountains will reach to Azel; yes, you will flee just as you fled from the earthquake in the days of Uzziah king of Judah. Then the Lord, my God, will come, and all the holy ones with Him!” Zechariah 14:1-5

Notice that at the revealing of Joseph to his brothers, the Egyptians heard about it. The world will hear about Jesus revealing himself to the Jews. Then they will let the Jews live in the best part of the land. Later, as they multiply, a new king will arise that will try to exterminate the Jews. This will lead to the battle of Armageddon. This will be Israel’s second Red Sea moment, except Jesus will save them rather than Moses. Then, “And I will pour out on the house of David and on the inhabitants of Jerusalem the Spirit of grace and of pleading, so that they will look at Me whom they pierced; and they will mourn for Him, like one mourning for an only son, and they will weep bitterly over Him like the bitter weeping over a firstborn.” Zechariah 12:10

Following the first 500 years ‘evening’ portion of Christ’s millennium follows the 500 years of ‘morning’. This is the glorious phase of Christ’s 1,000 year reign. “But for you who fear My name, the sun [son?] of righteousness will rise with healing in its wings; and you will go forth and frolic like calves from the stall.” Malachi 4:2

Posted by: biblestudyseattle | May 30, 2021

Noah Redux

“But about that day and hour no one knows, not even the angels of heaven, nor the Son, but the Father alone.  For the coming of the Son of Man will be just like the days of Noah.  For as in those days before the flood they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the day that Noah entered the ark, and they did not understand until the flood came and took them all away; so will the coming of the Son of Man be.  At that time there will be two men in the field; one will be taken and one will be left.  Two women will be grinding at the mill; one will be taken and one will be left.” Matthew 24:36-41

“Now He was questioned by the Pharisees as to when the kingdom of God was coming, and He answered them and said, “The kingdom of God is not coming with signs that can be observed; nor will they say, ‘Look, here it is!’ or, ‘There it is!’ For behold, the kingdom of God is in your midst.”

And He said to the disciples, “The days will come when you will long to see one of the days of the Son of Man, and you will not see it.  And they will say to you, ‘Look there,’ or, ‘Look here!’ Do not leave, and do not run after them.  For just like the lightning, when it flashes out of one part of the sky, shines to the other part of the sky, so will the Son of Man be in His day.  But first He must suffer many things and be rejected by this generation.  And just as it happened in the days of Noah, so will it also be in the days of the Son of Man: people were eating, they were drinking, they were marrying, and they were being given in marriage, until the day that Noah entered the ark, and the flood came and destroyed them all.  It was the same as happened in the days of Lot: they were eating, they were drinking, they were buying, they were selling, they were planting, and they were building; but on the day that Lot left Sodom, it rained fire and brimstone from heaven and destroyed them all.  It will be just the same on the day that the Son of Man is revealed.  On that day, the one who will be on the housetop, with his goods in the house, must not go down to take them out; and likewise the one in the field must not turn back.  Remember Lot’s wife.  Whoever strives to save his life will lose it, and whoever loses his life will keep it.  I tell you, on that night there will be two in one bed; one will be taken and the other will be left.  There will be two women grinding at the same place; one will be taken and the other will be left.   [Two men will be in the field; one will be taken and the other will be left.”]  And responding, they *said to Him, “Where, Lord?” And He said to them, “Where the body is, there also the vultures will be gathered.” Luke 17:20-37

These passages are about Jesus’ second coming. It is our opinion that this covers a period of at least 500 years. The start is as Jesus explained to the Pharisees, “The kingdom of God is not coming with sign that can be observed.” Amen. “And I saw coming out of the mouth of the dragon, and out of the mouth of the beast, and out of the mouth of the false prophet, three unclean spirits like frogs; for they are spirits of demons, performing signs, which go out to the kings of the entire world, to gather them together for the war of the great day of God, the Almighty.  (“Behold, I am coming like a thief. Blessed is the one who stays awake and keeps his clothes, so that he will not walk about naked and people will not see his shame.”)  And they gathered them together to the place which in Hebrew is called Har-Magedon.” Revelation 16:13-16

Jesus is coming as a thief. Quiet and stealthy. And by surprise. “Therefore be on the alert, for you do not know which day your Lord is coming.  But be sure of this, that if the head of the house had known at what time of the night the thief was coming, he would have been on the alert and would not have allowed his house to be broken into.  For this reason you must be ready as well; for the Son of Man is coming at an hour when you do not think He will.” Matthew 24:42-44

The stealth will end with the battle of Armageddon. This is the part everyone thinks of for the second coming. He will come down visibly and stand on the Mount of Olives. “Behold, a day is coming for the Lord when the spoils taken from you will be divided among you.  For I will gather all the nations against Jerusalem to battle, and the city will be taken, the houses plundered, the women raped, and half of the city exiled, but the rest of the people will not be eliminated from the city.  Then the Lord will go forth and fight against those nations, as when He fights on a day of battle.  On that day His feet will stand on the Mount of Olives, which is in front of Jerusalem on the east; and the Mount of Olives will be split in its middle from east to west forming a very large valley. Half of the mountain will move toward the north, and the other half toward the south.  And you will flee by the valley of My mountains, for the valley of the mountains will reach to Azel; yes, you will flee just as you fled from the earthquake in the days of Uzziah king of Judah. Then the Lord, my God, will come, and all the holy ones with Him!” Zechariah 14:1-5

The head of the house is Satan. “Be prepared, and keep your lamps lit.  You are also to be like people who are waiting for their master when he returns from the wedding feast, so that they may immediately open the door for him when he comes and knocks.  Blessed are those slaves whom the master will find on the alert when he comes; truly I say to you, that he will prepare himself to serve, and have them recline at the table, and he will come up and serve them.  Whether he comes in the second watch, or even in the third, and finds them so, blessed are those slaves.

“But be sure of this, that if the head of the house had known at what hour the thief was coming, he would not have allowed his house to be broken into.  You too, be ready; because the Son of Man is coming at an hour that you do not think He will.” Luke 12:35-40

Returning from the wedding feast? Second watch? Third? Jesus is coming during the night or evening in Hebrew thinking. The day or epoch is composed of evening then morning as described in Genesis 1. A 1,000 year ‘day’ consists of 500 years of evening and 500 years of morning. The night consists of four watches. A quarter of 500 is 125.

The purpose of Noah’s flood was to cleanse the earth then repopulate it. So also at the second coming. The end times are described as birth pangs. Isaiah 52:13-53 describes the Messiah. Isaiah 54 describes his bride:

“Shout for joy, infertile one, you who have not given birth to any child;
Break forth into joyful shouting and cry aloud, you who have not been in labor;
For the sons of the desolate one will be more numerous
Than the sons of the married woman,” says the Lord.
“Enlarge the place of your tent;
Stretch out the curtains of your dwellings, do not spare them;
Lengthen your ropes
And strengthen your pegs.
For you will spread out to the right and to the left.
And your descendants will possess nations
And will resettle the desolate cities.

“Fear not, for you will not be put to shame;
And do not feel humiliated, for you will not be disgraced;
But you will forget the shame of your youth,
And no longer remember the disgrace of your widowhood.
For your husband is your Maker,
Whose name is the Lord of armies;
And your Redeemer is the Holy One of Israel,
Who is called the God of all the earth.
For the Lord has called you,
Like a wife forsaken and grieved in spirit,
Even like a wife of one’s youth when she is rejected,”
Says your God.
“For a brief moment I abandoned you,
But with great compassion I will gather you.
In an outburst of anger
I hid My face from you for a moment,
But with everlasting favor I will have compassion on you,”
Says the Lord your Redeemer.

“For this is like the days of Noah to Me,
When I swore that the waters of Noah
Would not flood the earth again;
So I have sworn that I will not be angry with you
Nor rebuke you.
For the mountains may be removed and the hills may shake,
But My favor will not be removed from you,
Nor will My covenant of peace be shaken,”
Says the Lord who has compassion on you.

“Afflicted one, storm-tossed, and not comforted,
Behold, I will set your stones in antimony,
And I will lay your foundations with sapphires.
Moreover, I will make your battlements of rubies,
And your gates of crystal,
And your entire wall of precious stones.
All your sons will be taught by the Lord;
And the well-being of your sons will be great.
In righteousness you will be established;
You will be far from oppression, for you will not fear;
And from terror, for it will not come near you.
If anyone fiercely attacks you, it will not be from Me.
Whoever attacks you will fall because of you.
Behold, I Myself have created the smith who blows on the fire of coals
And produces a weapon for its work;
And I have created the destroyer to inflict ruin.
No weapon that is formed against you will succeed;
And you will condemn every tongue that accuses you in judgment.
This is the heritage of the servants of the Lord,
And their vindication is from Me,” declares the Lord. Isaiah 54

Posted by: biblestudyseattle | May 20, 2021

Garden Guilt

When you defied your parents as a child and were caught, did you feel sexual shame? Would that make sense? And yet that’s what happened with Adam and Eve(?) How does eating from the forbidden tree lead to sexual shame? Is there more to the story? One theory is the serpent seed theory. It states that the serpent had sex with Eve, who bore Cain. Here is an explanation: https://serpent-seed.com/ There are problems with the serpent seed theory, but still the question remains: why sexual shame from eating?

Posted by: biblestudyseattle | May 16, 2021

Eyes and Teeth

“Now if someone takes any human life, he must be put to death.  But the one who takes the life of an animal shall make restitution, life for life.  If someone injures his neighbor, just as he has done, so shall it be done to him: fracture for fracture, eye for eye, tooth for tooth; just as he has injured a person, so shall it be inflicted on him.  So the one who kills an animal shall make restitution, but the one who kills a person shall be put to death.” Leviticus 24:17-21

“But if there is any further injury, then you shall appoint as a penalty life for life, eye for eye, tooth for tooth, hand for hand, foot for foot, burn for burn, wound for wound, bruise for bruise.” Exodus 21:23-25

If a person takes an eye, is justice taking their eye? That is the type of justice we tend to think of. But what if it can be read another way? What if the person that took the eye could restore the eye? Wouldn’t that be a much better justice? Yes. The penalizing justice may be what we first experience, but ultimately a restorative justice will carry the day. God will ultimately make everything right.

Posted by: biblestudyseattle | April 3, 2021

Free Will vs Predestination

Do we have free will or is everything predestined? The short answer is both. “Or does the potter not have a right over the clay, to make from the same lump one object for honorable use, and another for common use?” Romans 9:21

“So Joshua said to the people, “You are witnesses against yourselves that you have chosen for yourselves the Lord, to serve Him.” And they said, “We are witnesses.” Joshua 24:22

We chose and God choses, but God’s will is more powerful. Much like parent and child. A small child may crawl over to see an object, but her mother lift’s her up to keep her safe. The child has free will, but mom’s will has overpowered the child’s to keep her safe. So it is with us. God will keep us safe by bringing us back to life. We will have the ability to chose [everlasting] life or death.

Posted by: biblestudyseattle | March 10, 2021

Noah’s 8

Is it significant that there were eight people on Noah’s ark? God could have just put Noah and his wife and they could have had children after the flood. Noah and family enter the ark in the seventh chapter of Genesis. They exit the ark and repopulate the earth in the eighth chapter. Does this suggest the Jubilee? The Jubilee is the 50th year, or the 8th year of the seventh 7 years.

“You shall not hold back the offering from your entire harvest and your wine. The firstborn of your sons you shall give to Me.  You shall do the same with your oxen and with your sheep. It shall be with its mother for seven days; on the eighth day you shall give it to Me.” Exodus 22:29-30

The back, western end of the Most Holy room of the tabernacle was framed by eight boards:

“And there shall be eight boards with their bases of silver, sixteen bases; two bases under one board and two bases under another board.” Exodus 26:25

Leprosy was cleansed on the eighth day:

“Now on the eighth day he is to take two male lambs without defect, and a yearling ewe lamb without defect, and three-tenths of an ephah of fine flour mixed with oil as a grain offering, and one log of oil; and the priest who is going to pronounce him clean shall present the person to be cleansed and the offerings before the Lord at the doorway of the tent of meeting.” Leviticus 14;10-11

The Festival of Booths or Tabernacles is followed by a party on the eighth day:

“For seven days you shall present an offering by fire to the Lord. On the eighth day you shall have a holy convocation and present an offering by fire to the Lord; it is an assembly. You shall not do any laborious work.” Leviticus 23:36

The Jubilee was to be a year of rest and bounty:

“When you are sowing the eighth year, you can still eat old things from the produce, eating the old until the ninth year when its produce comes in.” Leviticus 25;22

Will the resurrection be on the eighth day? The Jubilee?

Posted by: biblestudyseattle | March 3, 2021

In The Day Ye Eat…

“but from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for on the day that you eat from it you will certainly die.” Genesis 2:17

Did Adam & Eve die the day they ate from the tree? Yes. “For a thousand years in Your sight
Are like yesterday when it passes by.” Psalm 90:4 They died within that thousand-year ‘day’. Does this rule apply to us? Some think so. Sinful mankind is allowed up to a thousand years to live. For most of us since the Flood, that thousand years will be interrupted by death. The first part of our Adamic life will be the shorter part, the second part the longer. Jesus’ first coming was 33.5 years, his second, 1,000 years. So with us. Some will live 2, 32, or 90 years, then, centuries. “For as the lifetime of a treeso will be the days of My people, And My chosen ones will fully enjoy the work of their hands.” Isaiah 65:22

“For the youth will die at the age of a hundred, And the one who does not reach the age of a hundred Will be thought accursed.” Isaiah 65:20

“Even if the man lives a thousand years twice, but does not see good things—do not all go to one and the same place?” Ecclesiastes 6:6 After a thousand years comes the resurrection, a new creation, in the eighth day. The new creation starts when God’s rest ends, after the seventh day:

“And so the heavens and the earth were completed, and all their heavenly lights.  By the seventh day God completed His work which He had done, and He rested on the seventh day from all His work which He had done.  Then God blessed the seventh day and sanctified it, because on it He rested from all His work which God had created and made.” Genesis 2:1-3

Posted by: biblestudyseattle | February 21, 2021

Eve was deceived, Adam was not?

“And Adam was not the one deceived; it was the woman who was deceived and became a sinner.” 1 Timothy 2:14

Adam wasn’t deceived? Adam sinned, therefore he must have been deceived on some level. Is it possible that Adam saw animal death and Eve had not? We can’t know. But the Serpent started with Eve. Some have commented that God created Adam first, then Eve. Satan worked the other direction. He subverted Eve first, who then subverted Adam. The point may be not that Adam wasn’t deceived, but that Adam was not directly deceived by the Deceiver, the Devil. Satan works in the opposite direction of God. “And the great dragon was thrown down, the serpent of old who is called the devil and Satan, who deceives the whole world.” Revelation 12:9

Posted by: biblestudyseattle | February 13, 2021

The Wonder of Snow

“Cleanse me with hyssop, and I will be clean;
    wash me, and I will be whiter than snow” Psalm 51:7

“Come now, let us settle the matter,” says the Lord. “Though your sins are like scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they are red as crimson, they shall be like wool.” Isaiah 1:18

“As I looked, “thrones were set in place, and the Ancient of Days took his seat. His clothing was as white as snow; the hair of his head was white like wool. His throne was flaming with fire, and its wheels were all ablaze.” Daniel 7:9

Snow has at least two amazing qualities – light and sound. Snow reflects light as the most brilliant white. And snow absorbs sound for the most pure quiet.

“After the earthquake came a fire, but the Lord was not in the fire. And after the fire came a gentle whisper.  When Elijah heard it, he pulled his cloak over his face and went out and stood at the mouth of the cave.

Then a voice said to him, “What are you doing here, Elijah?” 1 Kings 19:12-13

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