CHRISTIAN, IF JESUS “IS” GOD THERE IS NO HOPE FOR US!!!

May 29, 2007

This is no ploy to get you to read this post. It is just basic understanding of who Jesus is, was, and what He has done for us.

The Bible says Jesus “was” God in John 1:1 and to reinforce the statement adds that He was with God in the beginning (verse 2). Though I am no Greek scholar, I can see that there is no word for “was”, or “is” in Strongs however it has always been translated as was and I believe God would not let it be translated wrong every time. It also agrees with the rest of the Bible.

In order to understand parts of the Bible one must understand other parts. You must understand death in order to understand life. There are two deaths in the Bible, the physical death, that we all must face and spiritual death which is not mandatory. The world looks at death as the end of life, but we know there is no end of life. Life is a permanent gift to every one. Death is actually a permanent separation. Physical death is a permanent separation from this world and all that is in it: even ones body. Spiritual death is permanent separation from God.

The second death is for those who did not turn to God in this life. It is the punishment for our sin. It is said correctly that Jesus died for us and that He paid the price for our sin: took our punishment for the sin that we committed.

Jesus died a physical death on the cross, but that is not all of what we deserve. We deserve permanent separation from God. If Jesus died the first death for us we would not have to die a physical death. However we must all die the first death. He died the second death for us, so that we do not have too.

Can you see that if separation from God is the second death and Jesus paid our penalty that He is now separated from God?

It is exactly as the Bible says, “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.” and that Jesus is the Son of God.

If you want to better understand who Jesus is, study the “Arm of God”.

astudent


WHAT 24 HOUR PERIOD DOES GOD REST?

May 24, 2007

My question is twofold. Does God rest every Sunday and if so when does His Sunday begin and end? I think you can see another question in my questions and it is “Did God only rest one day?”

If we assume that God rested, or rests on the Sabbath, then what time does God’s Sabbath start and end?

Yes, I know what Genesis 2:2&3 says so just bear with me a little while.

Let us say that I am in Cincinnati and my Sunday has just started. The people in California will not start their Sunday until three more hours have past. Is God on my time, or California time, or whose time? Who is it that goes with out the protection and care of God for a twenty four hour period? If God rests every Sabbath then we all do. I just wonder when that twenty four hour period is.

If you follow the same logic when does God’s Sabbath end? If it ends on my time then the people in California still have three more hours of Sabbath and those to the east of me are already into Monday and God would have to be at work for them. I think that you can see that there really is no Sabbath for God: if you use the sun as the standard that is.

When I consider the question of God’s rest I think of what Elihu said (Job 34:14&15 NIV) “If it were his intention and he withdrew his spirit and breath, all mankind would perish together and man would return to the dust.” It stands to reason that if God rested He would have had to withdraw to do so.

Then we have the words of Jesus that were spoken on a Sabbath, (John 5:17 NIV) “Jesus said to them, “My Father is always at his work to this very day, and I, too, am working.”” If God had finished His work and rested, could have Jesus said this?

If one uses the sun as the standard for determining the length of God’s days these verses can not be reconciled.

The bible says (Gen 2:2 NIV) By the seventh day God had finished the work he had been doing; so on the seventh day he rested from all his work. If God has yet to rest (John 5:17) then this verse is prophetic and has yet to be fulfilled.

The only way that I can see for all of these verses to agree is that God’s days are not the same as our days and God has yet to enter His rest. Said a different way, all of the days spoken about creation are very long days and are yet to be completed, because God can not have rested (all mankind has not perished). You can see that God created days before He created the sun to govern our days, so the first three days could not have been governed by the sun and in order to be consistent the rest of the days would not be governed by the sun. God’s rest (seventh day) will not depend on, or be governed by the sun (Rev 21:23&24 – 22:5).

Yes, I know that I have repeated myself a few times.

What do you think? Can you reconcile these verses a different way?

astudent


CAN YOU MOVE A MOUNTAIN?

May 17, 2007

The Bible says if you have faith and do not doubt, you can say to a mountain, AGo throw yourself into the sea, and it will be done@(Mat 21:21 & Mark 11:23). Have you ever had to duck a mountain? Have you ever heard of a mountain being thrown into the sea?

As I think about it, it seems to me that it is unlikely that a mountain will ever be thrown into any sea. I am not saying that it is not possible, because the Bible plainly states it is possible. The very thing that makes it possible will keep it from happening. The person without faith can not say to the mountain, go throw yourself into the sea, and be successful, because of his, or her, lack of faith. The person who has faith, and does not doubt, knows God made everything, and God put the mountain where the mountain belongs, so it would be wrong to move the mountain. If I had faith and did not doubt, I don=t believe I would move the mountain.

I don=t think Jesus is talking about a physical mountain in these verses. God uses symbolism all through the Bible and I think this is an example of it. I believe the mountain spoken of is symbolic of nations, and the sea is symbolic of the water of baptism. Though I have not seen a mountain thrown into the sea, this I have seen, I am a member of a large church and the leaders of the church do have faith and because of this they have said to a small nation go throw yourself into the water of baptism (large church, but small nation) and they did.

I can not move the mountain and I am not a leader. If you are like me then help those who can. Like Aaron and Hur when they helped Moses.

(Exo 17:9-13 NIV)  Moses said to Joshua, “Choose some of our men and go out to fight the Amalekites. Tomorrow I will stand on top of the hill with the staff of God in my hands.” So Joshua fought the Amalekites as Moses had ordered, and Moses, Aaron and Hur went to the top of the hill. As long as Moses held up his hands, the Israelites were winning, but whenever he lowered his hands, the Amalekites were winning. When Moses’ hands grew tired, they took a stone and put it under him and he sat on it. Aaron and Hur held his hands up–one on one side, one on the other–so that his hands remained steady till sunset. So Joshua overcame the Amalekite army with the sword.


WAS EVERY THING MADE IN SIX DAYS?

May 11, 2007

There is much debate about the six days of creation that we are told about in the very first part of the Bible. I use to believe those days were normal 24 hour days. I would say to my self, AGod can do anything and if God wanted to create everything that exists in 6 days, or 6 hours, or 6 minutes He certainly could@, and I was satisfied with my belief. God does that. He will give part of understanding to me and I believe that I understand completely, and then, out of what seems my own mind, comes a question which makes me doubt my understanding. It is wonderful when I doubt, because I know I am about to learn more, and I want to know everything God wants me to know. Don=t you?

The Bible says God=s days and man=s days are not in the same time frame (Psalms 90:4, 2 Pet 3:8). Psalms 90:4 says a thousand years to God is like a day, or a watch in the night. A day is 24 hours, but there were 3 watches in the night in the Old testament and 4 watches in the New Testament. So a watch could be 4 hours or 3 hours.  This says to me that God does not live in our time frame: that there is no constant to convert our time to God=s time. The eighth verse, of the third chapter, of second Peter says exactly that, (2 Pet. 3:8 NIV) AWith the Lord a day is like a thousand years, and a thousand years are like a day@.

As we study creation we see that God made days and nights (Gen 1:5) before He made the sun to govern days and nights (Gen 1:16). Some of God=s days or time had passed before the sun was made to govern a 24 hour day. These days could not have been determined by the sun to be our 24 hour days when there was no sun to do so. They must be God=s days and therefore can not be counted as we count days. It stands to reason that if some of the days spoken of in the account of creation were God=s days, then all of them would be. Carbon dating and other forms of determining the age of objects just might be somewhat accurate and still not disagree with the six days of creation, because of the difference of God=s days and our days.

Here is something so simple that it amazed me that I did not see it sooner. There can not be an evening before there is light. Evening is pronounced before morning in verse 5 which is of course perfectly correct. God made light first, or as I understand it day, and then let, or made it fade into evening. To look at it from a slightly different angle, God said, AAnd there was evening, and there was morning@, He did not say, there was morning, and there was evening.

Simple things are sometimes hard to explain. I know I=m no mental heavyweight so I try to break everything down to its simplest terms so I can understand it. If you are going to build a house you would not start on the second floor. You would start by making a good foundation first and then build on it. One must understand the basics before he can understand the complexities. I am only slightly digressing here.

When I grasped that God made light first, evening second, and morning third, I realized everything made before verse 5 was made before the first day. You are probably asking why this is important to understand. It is important because it sets everything spoken of back a day. I use to think God created the heavens, earth, and light the first day, but now I see that He created them before the first day, and the first day He divided the water from the sky.

Genesis 2:2&3 says, ABy the seventh day God had finished the work he had been doing; so on the seventh day he rested from all his work. And God blessed the seventh day and made it holy, because on it he rested from all the work of creating that he had done.@, but God has yet to enter His rest. This is affirmed in John 5:17(NIV), AJesus said to them, “My Father is always at his work to this very day, and I, too, am working.@. Notice that the verse says, Aalways at his work@. If God had entered his rest, even for one day I do not think that Jesus could  have truthfully said, AMy Father is always at his work to this very day@.

Genesis 1:31 says, AGod saw all that he had made, and it was very good. And there was evening, and there was morning‑‑the sixth day@. This says two things to me. One is Adam and Eve had yet to sin, because Ait was very good@, God=s creation had yet to be spoiled. Second is that everything said after chapter 2 verse 4, until Jesus came, is a description of the sixth day or the history of man. I believe Genesis 2:1-3 are prophetic, and have yet to happened.

I believe we are in the morning of the seventh day. Isaiah 9:2 says, AThe people walking in darkness have seen a great light; on those living in the land of the shadow of death a light has dawned@. I believe this dawn spoken of here and repeated in Matthew 4:16 is the dawn of the seventh day and of this day there will be no end. It speaks of Jesus which is the light that governs our day. Our Father will enter His rest later this day: after judgement. Genesis 2:2 says on the seventh day God rested from all His work, but it does not specify what hour of the day. Only The Father knows the hour (Mat 24:36 & Mark 13:32).

This view of creation also would explain why the Sabbath is no longer strictly adhered to. If we are in God=s seventh day then anytime is the right time to worship. Any and all of our (man=s) days are now in God=s Sabbath. It seems right to meet on the first day, because this is the beginning of God=s day in which He, and we, will enter His rest.

The symbolism of the Sabbath was a day of rest, when no work is done. Jesus finished the work of salvation on the cross (John 19:30). We can do no work that will save us. All of the work has been done by Jesus. I believe that is what He meant when He said, Ait is finished@(John 19:30). Anyone who worked on the Sabbath was cursed. Wasn=t Jesus cursed for us?

That is how the days of creation spoken of in Genesis look to me now: from my side of the table. By the way, if you see the days of creation this way, you see man was made on the fifth day, not the sixth. Did you really expect my view to be the same as your=s?


COMPAIRING THE SHROUD OF TURIN TO SCRIPTURE.

May 8, 2007

I read about worldly test on the Shroud of Turin, though I don’t hear much about the results. I believe that we can see from scripture that it is not the burial shroud of Jesus. Let’s compare the Shroud first and then the image.

We can get an idea of how someone was prepared for burial from John 11:44. Lazarus came out of his tomb with his hands and feet wrapped with strips of linen, and a cloth around his face. The verse doesn’t say a cloth around his body. It would have been difficult to walk in a shroud that covered the whole body and I don’t think you could see that his hands and feet were wrapped.

This method is also indicated as the same used for Jesus. (John 19:40 NIV)  “Taking Jesus’ body, the two of them wrapped it, with the spices, in strips of linen. This was in accordance with Jewish burial customs”. This verse says it was not the custom to bury someone in a shroud and that Jesus was not.

This is also reconciled in (John 20:6&7 NIV) “Then Simon Peter, who was behind him, arrived and went into the tomb. He saw the strips of linen lying there, as well as the burial cloth that had been around Jesus’ head. The cloth was folded up by itself, separate from the linen.” (The KIV calls the cloth a napkin: sounds small to me)

The Shroud of Turin has an image of a man with no wrappings in his hands or feet and that does not agree with John 19:40 or 20:6&7 (19 says they did and 20 says the wrappings were there).

I’m sure that someone can, with a great amount of imagination, explain away these points, but there is one thing that does not agree with Scripture that can not be explained away.

Jesus was beaten by the Sanhedrin and the Roman Guard. Not just a little, but extensively.

(Mark 14:55 NIV)  The chief priests and the whole Sanhedrin were looking for evidence against Jesus so that they could put him to death, but they did not find any.

(I included this verse so you know who it was that blindfolded and struck Jesus)

(Mark 14:65 NIV)  Then some began to spit at him; they blindfolded him, struck him with their fists, and said, “Prophesy!” And the guards took him and beat him.

(Mark 15:19 NIV)  Again and again they struck him on the head with a staff and spit on him. Falling on their knees, they paid homage to him.

Have you ever seen anyone who was beaten? I don’t mean beaten like Jesus where a blindfold was used so He could not see the blow coming and had no opportunity to avoid it. Just your average beating that lasted a while. Let me tell you what that persons face would look like. His nose will be broken, both eyes will be swelled almost, or completely shut, teeth will be knocked out, and his whole face and head will be swollen and deformed. (Can you see why no one recognized Jesus until He spoke to them?)

Does the image depicted in the Shroud show a man beaten? Even a little?

The truth is the physical body that Jesus possessed while He was on the earth is of little importance. It is the Spirit of Jesus that is important and the Bible describes that very well. Don’t waste your time thinking about worldly aspects of our King. Instead use your time to learn about what He did and why He did it. To know Jesus is to know God.

astudent


GOD SAID DESTROY THEM ALL!!!

May 4, 2007

That is what God said, but I believe we should examine this from all angles before we judge God.

We should always consider the basics of a matter before we go on to more complex parts of the problem.

The first thing to consider would be death. Everyone must die a physical death: the first death. So if God said someone, or all of a nation must be destroyed it only means that they die earlier than if they were allowed to live until they were very old.

If one is going to blame God for commanding a nation be destroyed, in order to be consistent, they would have to blame God for all death. But then you would have to believe there is a God and the next step in that line of thought would be God made life and therefore has every right to end it.

It seems that mankind wants to hold God to a standard that they, themselves would not embrace. If a man makes a chair, paints a picture, writes a book, or even makes a buck he considers it his and if someone would tell him what to do with it they would very quickly  be told where to go and what to do when they got there. Yet we are quick to judge God for what He does with His possessions.

If God made everything that was made then He has every right to do with it as He pleases, but because we think life belongs to the person our view of what is right is compromised. We did not give ourselves life, so it doesn’t belong to us; it really belongs to God.

Having said that God was not unjust in commanding Israel to destroy all of life in the nations that lived in the land He gave them. He told them that if they were allowed to live in the land that they would cause God’s people to turn to other gods. That would cause His people to die the second death (separation from God), and that death is the more important of the two. The first death is mandatory, but the second death is not.

God is not cruel. He did not say destroy them all first. He said drive them out of the land (Num 33:52) and destroy their idols and places of worship. If they left, as I understand it, they would not have been destroyed.

God set the same standard for His own people. If they turned to other gods they were also to be destroyed (Deu 13:12-16). It is not that He hates them as much as they will cause others to lose their place in Heaven.

Just to put it together these people were going to die anyway (so are we) and it would be better that they died before they caused God’s people to sin against God and lose their eternal place in Heaven with God.

astudent


WHAT BAPTISM DOES!!!

May 1, 2007

I will not bore you with a lot about baptism that you already know. Let’s just cut to the chase. God will not become one with a sinner. God has no sin and God hates those who do wrong (Psa 5:5) Could you expect God to become one with someone He hates?

In baptism (done properly) one admits that they are dead in their sins and are buried with Christ. Then they are raised a new person. This new person has yet to sin so he, or she, has no sin. God can become one with this person, because He does not hate them.

That is not to say we will not sin, but when we do God will not abandon us. That is loyalty and God is loyal. It is totally different from becoming one with someone who is hated.

John came with the way to make straight paths for God.                                                                             

(Isa 40:3 NIV)  A voice of one calling: “In the desert prepare the way for the LORD ; make straight in the wilderness a highway for our God.                                                                                                           (Mat 3:3 NIV)  This is he who was spoken of through the prophet Isaiah: “A voice of one calling in the desert, ‘Prepare the way for the Lord, make straight paths for him.'”

Can you see that baptism makes a way for God to enter a believer?

You can see that baptism is to be buried with Christ and sprinkling is not a proper way to bury anyone. If you were to just sprinkle dirt on a body there would be a terrible stink in a short time and that is the way sprinkling smells to me.

God doesn’t tell a new believer to be baptized, because that would be an illegal command (computer jargon). No one can baptize themselves. He tells those who can carry out the command to do so.            

(Mat 28:19&20 NIV)  Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.”

If we did so and taught others too there would be no problems with baptism.

As I see it, No baptism-No Holy Spirit!                                                                                           

 

astudent