Creation – Faith

Creation Theology
If we wish to understand Creation, and the origins of the universe, plants, animals, and even mankind we must turn to the scripture. Scripture is the sole authority on all spiritual matters, and Creation is indeed a spiritual matter. (2 Corinthians 4:18). While we understand that in this world we have certain laws of nature and science that are used to sustain the way in which life is organized and controlled, we must also allow that the origin of these comes from the supernatural, or spiritual. All of Creation is a construct of God. Scripture gives us an explanation of these events and reveals God to us as the Creator. Science can help us to validate some things found in scripture. Historical records can give account to the trustworthiness of certain biblical figures, their actions, and how they lived their lives. Archeology can validate the existence of ancient civilizations and allow us to reconstruct what daily life may have been like for our forefathers. Paleontology, and other related studies, can also show us the different species of animals that once thrived on the earth, and give us possible evidences of why they are no longer with us. Geology can give us clues to catastrophic events like the flood, and the subsequent ice age. Laws of nature and physics can give us the boundaries of universal laws that have existed since the creation event. DNA and gnome mapping can give us insight into the complexity of life and how traits are carefully passed down from generation to generation. We can see the safeguards that are put in to protect the species from crossing unseen lines of generational evolution through defect and mutation. All of these studies point to an intelligent design. They tell us of the need for a highly intelligent designer. These sciences can point us towards the reality of God. Scripture can tell us who God is. Nature can show us his intellect, and his involvement in our everyday lives. The Gospel Jesus Christ tells us about his love for all of his creation, especially mankind as a whole, and as individuals. Genesis reveals God’s plan of salvation established before the creation of the universe.
Science, however; is restricted to being able to measure, and interpret the things that are inside of the creation. Science cannot give answers to the things that are outside of the created universe. Science cannot give us a full understanding of eternity, origins of the universe, or even gravity for that matter. Science cannot answer questions like: What caused the creation event? Where did matter originate? Where did energy originate? When the end of space is reached, what is after that? Is there a God? If there is a God, where is he? If there is a God, why did he create us? These are questions that demand an authoritative answer. An opinion or a guess does nothing to satisfy this deep need of an answer. Mankind has always had one stirring question, “Why are we here?” Where science finds its limits, scripture abounds with the answers. Science can drive us to realize the need for an existence of God, but scripture tells us of the certainty of God. Scripture introduces us to God and reveals who he is, why we were created, and what our purpose is.


The Old and New Testament Scriptures of the Holy Bible are our authoritative text that answers all of these questions and more. When the Apostle, Paul of Tarsus, wrote his child in Christ, Timothy, he encouraged this young Pastor that, “All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness:” (2 Timothy 3:16). We can see the confidence that the apostle had in the scriptures. We can see the confidence that Pail told Timothy he needed to have in the authority of scripture. We too as believers in Jesus Christ, should also have this bold confidence in the scriptures. Many modern Christians have been brought up in the aftermath of Charles Darwin’s Theory of Evolution. We have been told that this science is the authority of human origins and that as such, it is unquestionable. At this point I employ you to do your own research. Just as Paul said that we should search out the scriptures to see if what he was saying was true, we should search out what Darwinist are saying to see if it is true. If an apostle of the Gospel of Jesus Christ is willing for you to search out and verify that what he is saying is true, then shouldn’t we have the same challenge accepted by Darwinist? Can Darwin’s theory really be proven, or is it something that we have to just take on faith and hope? I think you will find as, I did and, many modern scientists are finding out; the Big Bang, Evolution, and even the fossil records are all taken by faith, just like Christianity and the Holy Bible. Darwin himself proposed excuses for why his theory may never be proven. He stated that the geological record was a history of the world imperfectly kept. Then later he laid out the process of how the evidence should be regarded. He said that in cases of positive paleontological evidence we can implicitly trust them, but negative evidence is worthless. Darwin says that any possible evidence found to support evolution must be admitted as science, but any evidence that does not support evolution must be ignored. That fails the scrutiny test, doesn’t it? We must grant that science either cannot or will not give truthful answers to things that are inside of creation. Nor, can science, by its very nature, give us answers to things that are outside of the laws of nature and science. We should turn to the only authority who can. This authority is the Holy Bible, and it begins with the book of Genesis.
Genesis is the first of five books referred to as the Pentateuch. The author of the Pentateuch is traditionally ascribed to Moses. This book is believed to have been written from 1450-1410 B.C. Genesis contains a record of the real-life history of individuals, peoples, tribes, and nations. Much of the information concerning these events are readily available in archaeological finds that have corroborated the customs, languages, and common life events recorded in the Bible. From this book we get such familiar stories as Cain and Abel, Noah’s Ark, the Tower of Babel, the Plaques of Egypt, Moses and the Ten Commandants, and the Origins of life. One of the great things that the Pentateuch does is give detailed enough lineages that can be used to get a general estimation of the age of the earth.


Interestingly we can see through the linage of Adam, how the Creation event could have been passed down with accuracy from Adam to Noah. Adam is reported to have fathered his son Seth at the age of 130. He then live on for another 800 years, dying at the age of 930 years. (Genesis 5:3-5) Adam would have lived long enough to relay the events of creation, the fall of man, and the promise of a redeemer to generations of descendants including: Seth, Enos, Cainan, Mahalaleel, Jared, Enoch, and Methuselah. Methuselah is the Grandfather of Noah. It is clear by Noah’s faith in God that he was well aware of who God is, and that God was the Creator of the Universe. Genesis 9:29 tells us that Noah lived 950 years. Just counting Adam and Noah, this gives us over 2000 years of historical data from the creation to after the flood. Here is another something that these genealogies give us. Noah lived 450 years after the birth of Shem. Shem had Arphaxad when he was 100. Arphaxad had Salah at the age of 35. When Salah was 30 he had his son Eber. Eber had Pelet when he was 34. Then Peleg had Reu at the age of 30. When Reu was 32 he had Serug. Serug had Nahor at 30. Nahor had his son Terah at 29. Then finally at the age of 70 Terah had Abraham, who it the father of the Jewish nation. That is a total of 400 years. How long did Noah live after having his son? The answer is 450 years. Noah could have passed on the eyewitness testimony of Adam, and his own eyewitness testimony of the flood to all of his descendants for 9 generations, including Abraham. Including the linage of Noah up to the life span of Abraham gives us another 500 years of constant history. This means that we have a constant chain-of-custody of the world-wide flood, and the beginning of the creation event to include the creation of Man. (Adam). Abraham had his son Isaac who had his son Jacob (Israel) who the tribes of Israel come from. This then leads to Joseph and the Egyptian slavery. This leads us into Moses the author.


The English word genesis comes to us through a Latin word based on the Greek tittle to this book. The Hebrew word used translates to, “in the beginning”. Merriam-Webster defines Genesis as, “the origin or coming into being of something”. In the book of Genesis, in the Holy Bible, we find the origins of the universe, and everything that is contained within. This includes the stars, earth and moon, man, sin, civilization, and time. This also includes the laws that govern science and nature. Genesis also reveals to us a personal God, the purpose of man, and the anticipation of a redeemer. “And the LORD God said unto the serpent, Because thou hast done this, thou art cursed above all cattle, and above every beast of the field; upon thy belly shalt thou go, and dust shalt thou eat all the days of thy life: And I will put enmity between thee and the woman, and between thy seed and her seed; it shall bruise thy head, and thou shalt bruise his heel. (Genesis 3:14-15) With all of these things that Genesis covers, it never mentions the origin of God. This is simply because, God existed prior to the creation event. The Genesis story just begins with a simple assumption.

Examples of this found in scripture are:
• John 17:24, “Father, I will that they also, whom thou hast given me, be with me where I am; that they may behold my glory, which thou hast given me: for thou lovedst me before the foundation of the world.”
• Ephesians 1:4, “Just as He chose us in Him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before Him in love.”
• Titus 1:2, “In hope of eternal life which God, who cannot lie, promised before time began”
• Hebrews 1:10, “And, Thou, Lord, in the beginning hast laid the foundation of the earth; and the heavens are the works of thine hands:”
God simply IS, and God simply CREATED. This is the first matter of faith. “Faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.”(Hebrews 11:1). Through faith we know that the whole structure of the universe was planned out and implemented by God. From generation to generation men have staked their lives, their families, and the existence of the human race on this faith in God. (Hebrews 11) God as the Creator is the single important most concept upon which the rest of the scriptures hinge upon. The apostle John wrote concerning Jesus that, “In the beginning was the Word (Jesus), and the Word (Jesus) was with God, and the Word (Jesus) was God. The same was in the beginning with God” (John 1:1-2). The word beginning refers to the creation event, thus reinforces that (1) Jesus existed prior to creation, (2) Jesus is God, and therefore God existed prior to creation. We know this because the following verse tells us the all things were made by him (Jesus, God). We must believe that God is, and that the events he has let us know concerning creation are true. Without this basis we cannot proceed in faith. If God lied about the events, timing, or sequence of creation, then we cannot trust anything else that God reveals about himself in the scriptures. (Psalm 33:4; Psalm 56:4; 2 Timothy 3:16; John 8:32; John 17:17; Revelation 21:5) Our faith would be in vain. But God has provided this record for us, “For whatsoever things were written aforetime were written for our learning, that we through patience and comfort of the scriptures might have hope.” (Romans 15:4), this is so that we can take comfort in what he has promised, and look forward to his fulfillment of his promises. We can look forward in hope to the resurrection of life in Jesus Christ, because it is this same God who has ordained it. This God, who created the entire universe has always cared for his creation, and always will.


In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth. (Genesis 1:1)
The beginning is not a reference to eternity. This beginning is a reference to the creation of the universe. This also gives us the establishment of time. Time gives us past present and a future. Without a reference in time we cannot know how things were established. There would be no order, and no frame to the events that God was soon to put in effect, in his creation. If there were no construct of time the meaning of days, years, or seasons would have no effect or purpose. We must also consider that the sequence of events was important and necessary to the design of creation, and that God thought it important enough to tell us of the sequence. This shows forethought and intelligence in the design and manner of creation. But this does something else. It tells us that before “time” began, God IS. This means before there was a universe, before there was time, space, matter and all the things that were needed to create life, let alone sustain it, God IS. He exists. One more thing to ponder, if there is a beginning, there must be an end. This shows that there is a completed plan of events that must transpire, and eventually there will be an end to the creation. This also means that time itself will end. God, however, will still exist-because he exists outside of time and creation. “Yea, before the day was I am he; and there is none that can deliver out of my hand: I will work, and who shall let it?” (Isaiah 43:13)
God does not need anything to sustain him or to give him life. This is an extremely hard concept for us to fathom, because everything in our world and the universe needs something else to sustain it. Nothing is self-sustaining in all of creation. We have no way to comprehend how something could have always been in existence, or how it is self-sustaining. We are like a fish in an aquarium we have no reference for anything outside of the aquarium’s environment. The fish can look at everything in the aquarium. The fish, if it were capable, could know that everything it needs to live is present. It gets food, oxygen, the water is cleaned, and his environment never runs out of water. The fish can see in everything around it the care of the owner of the aquarium, but it cannot grasp the concept that there is another whole world outside the aquarium. The fish has no comprehension of how the aquarium was put together to give it life. The fish is born into the aquarium, and therefore has no reference of the age of the owner of the aquarium. It does not know how the owner came into existence and it cannot comprehend such a concept that the owner has always been there, even before the fish was brought into the aquarium. This is the way man is with God.


We have no frame of reference available to us to understand how God could have always been in existence. Since we cannot know this, Genesis starts off with a simple assumption, God does exist. Instead of explaining God right off, Genesis explains how everything was brought into existence by God, and the rest of the scriptures reveal God to us gradually, so that we can come to know the Creator. It is like any other relationship we encounter. No one ever meets someone and immediately receives a dissertation on who they are or where they come from with follow up questions and evidentiary procedure motions after that. Nor do we immediately know what there likes and dislikes are, and so on. Instead we learn intimate details of someone over time from spending time with them and having mutual experiences with them. We learn about who someone is by seeing them in life events and watching how they handle those events. How someone handles both good and bad events can reveal a lot about them. This is how we learn about the Creator, in the study of scripture, study of his creation, and in time spent in prayer and worship. We enter a relationship with God, through Jesus Christ, and learn of him as we spend time with him. Therefore, God, who has always existed, decided to create. This first verse tells us where space, time, matter, and energy all came from.


God created. (John 1:3). God created the heaven and the earth. First is it important to understand that this verse clearly shows that God is separate from his creation. I mention this to directly dispel the belief of pantheism. Pantheism is a belief that the culmination of the universe and everything in it is
God.

We see in the first two chapters of Genesis that:

(1) God existed first,

(2) God created,

(3) everything God created was good.

This would also dispel polytheism, because there is only one God who made everything. It would also dispel the eastern philosophies that give root to a good and bad mutual relationship of interaction in the universe like yin-and-yang, or karma. God and the universe are exclusive, and separate from one another. The universe was created by God, for God. Consider the following verses concerning God’s existence as separate from his creation:
Before the mountains were brought forth,or ever thou hadst formed the earth and the world, even from everlasting to everlasting, thou art God. (Psalm 90:2)
By the word of the Lord were the heavens made; and all the host of them by the breath of his mouth. (Psalm 33:6)
I will lift up mine eyes unto the hills, from whence cometh my help. My help cometh from the Lord, which made heaven and earth. (Psalm 121:1-2)
It is he that buildeth his stories in the heaven, and hath founded his troop in the earth; he that calleth for the waters of the sea, and poureth them out upon the face of the earth: The Lord is his name. (Amos 9:6)

In Genesis 1:1 the word heaven is singular and references space. At this time God spoke the physical universe into existence. Space gives us three dimensions: length, height, and width. This is important because there must be a place created in which everything could be placed. In computer programming this is called a container. We could also look at it like this, you need a pot to make a soup in. Without the space in the pot, you could not put all of the ingredients together to make the soup. This is what the creation of space did, it make a place to put all of the ingredients needed to make the creation event possible. The word earth is a reference to the creation of matter. Matter also had three dimensions: liquid, solid, and gas. We now have a container that has something in it. The matter in its raw state was uninhabitable. Even at this stage though we now have established the basic building blocks of life. We also have a suitable environment that life can be created in. There is also the construct of time through which project benchmarks can be measured. Even at this stage there is evidence of an intelligent design. This is the same intelligence of design that is used in boardrooms by project managers, engineers, and military strategists all over the world today. We have a timeline and a project board, and ingredients and a place to prepare them.


Here is what Isaiah has to say concerning creation:


Who hath measured the waters in the hollow of his hand, and meted out heaven with the span, and comprehended the dust of the earth in a measure, and weighed the mountains in scales, and the hills in a balance? (Isaiah 40:12)


I have made the earth, and created man upon it: I, even my hands, have stretched out the heavens, and all their host have I commanded. (Isaiah 45:12)


Since God created the universe this makes him the Creator. Seems simple enough. As the Creator he has absolute authority over his creation. He directs the creative process. He establishes the boundaries. God engineers the dependencies and sets the foundation. He establishes the rules, rewards, and even the punishments. He manages the workflow and is responsible to provide everything necessary for the project completion. He answers to no one, including his creation. (Job 37:14-16). Since he has complete autonomy over his creation, he is under no obligation to explain anything. Furthermore, his creation has no authority to demand an explanation if one is not forthcoming. It is arrogance for the creature to look to the creator and either deny he exists, or to tell him that the manor of which he created, makes no sense. Lucky for us, God wants us to know who he is, and has supplied the answers we need in scripture and in creation itself. (Job 12:7-10; Psalm 19:1; Psalm 96:11-12; Isaiah 43:20; Romans 1:20) What then can we learn about God in his act of creation as revealed in the scriptures?
And the earth was without form, and void; and darkness was upon the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters. (Genesis 1:2)


Before we move forward in this verse, we must discuss the white space between verse one and verse two. This is referred to as the Gap Theory. The gap theory suggests that there is a very large time interval that takes place between the two verses. This theory is referred to as Theistic Evolution. This is considered by some theologians to explain the claim of evolutionist, that the earth is billions of years old instead of the thousands of years of age that the genealogies within the bible place the age of the earth. This theory tries to give time for the gradual crawl of creation out of the primordial soup, and crawling to the land and eventually forming animals which through billions of years. This is saying that God created man through the process of evolution. Now to further explain, this theory tells of a preexisting time period in which there was life on the earth, and then the earth was flooded and made formless and void. This is commonly referred to as the Luciferian flood. After this period, God decided, he would re-vamp his creation to creation 2.0, a much-improved version of creation. At first it may seem logical and appear to fit science and the Genesis account together rather nicely. Many Christians do adapt to this theology because it does seem to match the science with the theology and Genesis. I myself when I was a new Christian also thought that this might be a possibility when I heard other older Christians speaking to this theory. This is however; a heretical doctrine which compromises the Christian’s faith. Once I began to really study the science and the Scripture, I began to realize that either evolution or creation had to be correct. The truth is you either must take God at his word and believe on him in faith or call him a liar and be honest with yourself, that you have no faith in him. Here is somethings to consider; if this Christian-Evolution doctrine were true then why wasn’t the Luciferian flood recorded or even referenced, in the Scriptures, like the flood of Noah? If God cared so much to give us the sequence of events, why leave out such an important detail?


Scripture makes references to a flood in the time period of Noah and his family, but not to a previous flood. (1 Peter 3:20; 2 Peter 2:4-5). There are several cultures that have differing stories of a great world-wide flood, in which the gods saved one man, and his family in a boat. But no ancient civilization tells of another world that existed prior to this one, or that it was wiped out twice. Peter tells us, “All things continue as they were from the beginning of creation.” (2 Peter 3:5-6) Peter’s reference here is clearly to the very beginning, when time began. In fact, he could have easily said, since the beginning of time, everything functions the same-nothing has changed since the creation. The sun, the moon, the stars, people’s attitudes and manners, are all the same since they were created. This statement, by the way, says that there has been no evolution from one species to another. (Genesis 1:26-27; 5-10) A literal reading of the scripture suggests a continuation of thought from verse one to verse two to verse three. Before we move on there is something else to consider with this theory – Death. 1 Corinthians 15:21 says, “For since by man came death, by man came also the resurrection of the dead.” The scripture goes on to specify that it was Adam who brought death into the world through sin. (1 Corinthians 15:22). That means there could not have been death prior to the creation of Adam.


If we do not believe the first two chapters in Genesis, then we cannot believe anything else in scripture. Is God a liar? “God forbid: yea, let God be true, but every man a liar; as it is written, That thou mightest be justified in thy sayings, and mightest overcome when thou art judged.” (Romans 3:4). It is better to trust in the LORD than to put confidence in man. (Psalm 118:8) Sanctify them through thy truth: thy word is truth. (John 17:17) Now, true science and true scripture will actually line up and support one another. God himself tells us to look to nature to see his handiwork. “For the invisible things of him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even his eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse.”(Romans 1:20) Science changes as they gather more information and gain greater understanding of the laws of nature, mathematics, energy, and even the mysteries of the universe in space. Proof of this is easy to see by comparing textbooks over time. For instance the original concepts of geological layering supported a young earth model, one of only 6-7 thousand years of age. Then later the geological layering was reported to have reflected, hundreds of thousands, and even billions of years. Now there are openly conflicting views of how old the earth is and how reliable the data actually is. This is largely because, everyone is just guessing. They make estimates in order to back up their own point of view. More scientist have openly put their reputations on the line, by reporting that Darwinism is an unprovable hypothesis. Harold Urey is quoted as stating, “All of us who study the origin of life find that the more we look into it, the more we feel that it is too complex to have evolved anywhere. We believe as an article of faith that life evolved from dead matter on this planet. It is just that its complexity is so great, it is hard for us to imagine that it did.” Geologist dispute the old earth age theory based on the Geological Column pointed out that it is more likely a cataclysmic event that cause the layering, much like the one recorded in the Bible concerning the Noetic flood.


The earth was without form and void. Some have translated the word was as the word became. Although in Hebrew the word may mean became as in Chapter 19 verse 26, the construction of the clause does not support such a consecutive statement describing something that happened subsequent to verse one but rather describe something included in verse one. In other words, the initial creation was formless and empty, a condition soon remedied. The phrase means that at this point in God’s creation activity the earth was yet unfastened an uninhabitable. What is important to see in verse two is that God moved. You see this is showing the sovereignty of God. He is taking divine action. We see here the Holy Spirit of God moving on the waters. This is a glimpse of the Triune God head. This is an amazing revelation of God. Right from the beginning God shows us that there is the Father, then he shows the Holy Spirit, next he reveals the Word. (Matthew 28:19; John 10:30; 1 John 5:7; 1 Corinthians 8:6; Genesis 1:26; Isaiah 48:16)
And God said, Let there be light: and there was light. (Genesis 1:3)

This brings us to another revelation-God speaks. God is a God who communicates with his creation. God begins his very creation by speaking things into existence. This becomes the model of God as he unveils himself to his creation. Throughout the whole Bible God is talking and desiring to be heard. More importantly he speaks not only in signs and miracles, but in manners that we as his creation can understand. He uses written language, thundering voices, dreams and visions, and even still whispers. But this verse also reveals something else about God. God is a God of light.


God said, let there be light: and there was light (Genesis 1:3) at this time there was no sun or stars or moon. This is an important part of the verse that gives us a truth concerning the Almighty God that we will see reemphasized in Scripture repeatedly. 1 John 1:5 tells us, “this is the message we have heard from him and declare to you: God is light; in him there is no darkness at all.” I think that it is comforting to see that the Lord started creation by shedding light. I can picture a craftsman getting ready to make a great piece of furniture or a great wood carving. He goes out to his shop, he opens the door and stops staring into the blackness of the work area. He then reached in sliding his hand along the inner wall. His searching fingers finally find the switch. Then he flicks the light switch, and the darkness is driven from the room. Now, he can begin his project. I know, God didn’t really need the light to work. But this is an indicator of who he is. He is light. This gives a great meaning to what Peter says, “but you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, God’s special possession, that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness and into his wonderful light.” (1 Peter 2:9) so here in the very beginning we see a truth concerning God, that he is light and desires for us to walk in light so that we could be with him. When God said let there be light, he was revealing himself to his creation.


Evidence of God’s participation in creation is mentioned several times in this first chapter of Genesis. In the first chapter various phrases are used that show the authority of God and the power of his word. The use of these phrases demonstrates the intimacy of God and his act of creation. “God said” is used 10 times in the first six days of creation. “God called” is used three times and first six days of creation. “God made” and “he made” are used five times in the first chapter of Genesis. “God created” is used three times in the first chapter of Genesis. Other phrases used in the first six days include; “God saw”, “God blessed”, and “God set”. If you notice the phrase God called, this is an act of naming and is evidence of Lordship or ownership. The phrase God set, shows us that God established limits and boundaries to creation. One of these would be detailed in verse 11 where God says, “after his kind” thus establishing fixed boundaries beyond which reproductive variations cannot go.

We see these things happen in the first chapter of Genesis:
• Day 1 God Said = Light (v.3)
• Day 2 God Said = Firmament (v.6)
• Day3 God Said = Dry Land/ Grass/ Herbs/Fruit (vv.9,11)
• Day4 God Said = Sun/ Moon/ Stars (v.14)
• Day5 God Said = Fish / Fowl (vv.20,21)
• Day 6 God Said = Living Creatures/ Beasts/ Man (vv.24,26)
Let us take a closer look at what scripture says concerning these portions of creation.


What is a Day? When we consider what the author of Genesis is speaking of in a day, we must understand that Genesis is considered to be a historical book. Many of the places, events, and individuals recorded in the Genesis accounts have been located and verified through many archeological sites. Many of the major events recorded in Genesis, to include the flood of Noah, have been recorded in other ancient religions and traditions from around the world. So when we examine this crucial point of what a day is in Genesis 1, we need to do so from the context of the surrounding scripture. The Hebrew word used for “day” in Genesis 1 is Yom. The word Yom does have different meanings available to it depending on the context of its use. It can denote:

(1) the period of light (as contrasted with the period of darkness);

(2) the period of twenty-four hours, which is used over 400 times in the Old Testament;

(3) a general vague “time;”

(4) a point of time;

(5) a year (in the plural; 1 Sam. 27:7; Exod. 13:10, etc.).

Being that the mention of each day covered in the creation dialogue says, “the evening and the morning were” (Genesis 1:5,8,13,19, 23,31), we can easily do away with explanation (1) of Yom meaning the period of light in a day (daylight). The meanings of (3), (4), and (5) are commonly grouped together under the allegorical or figurative theology. This means that in some way or another these three show up in an attempt to add time to the length of a day. This is an attempt to show that the time period used in creation was not a short time period, but that God did each phase of creation over longer “representative” days (periods).
Great periods of time or phases for the term day was not intended by the Moses (the author of Genesis), nor God. In addition, basic science tells us that there are certain things needed to create and sustain life. None of which could have been able to develop on its own, and sustain itself over billions of years while the support structure slowly evolved. It is a scientific impossibility. For example, plants could not have existed without the sun. We know according to Genesis that God created the plants on day three, but the sun on day four. So how could the plants have survived for 1000-2000 years, much less billions of years without the sun to initiate photosynthesis? A geological period of time assigned to each day is not likely.


24 hour day (literal) – The phrase, “evening and the morning”, indicates that these are literal days. The use of this phrase is repeated 61 times in the Old Testament, and always refers to a 24-hour sequence in time. Science has shown that life can exist where there is no light.
“So what about life that does not depend on the Sun to survive? Deep in the ocean, there are some autotrophs that use energy from the Earth’s hot core to make their food. The only examples I know about are bacteria that live near hydrothermal vents (jets of hot water coming from deeper in the Earth). These bacteria use chemicals like methane and hydrogen sulfide and the energy from hydrothermal vents to make their food. We call this process chemosynthesis (which roughly means “making things [food] from chemicals”). Other life forms can eat these bacteria and also survive without sunlight. The only examples I know about are called giant tube worms, riftia pachyptila. Scientists only discovered these strange chemosynthetic bacteria in 1977. Now we know that life can exist without sunlight, but there are still a lot of things that we don’t know about how it works. I would definitely say that humans need the Sun to survive, and we probably always will.”
“Plants and some microbes use the energy from the sun to perform photosynthesis. In photosynthesis, light energy is used to combine CO2 in the air with water to make sugars and oxygen. Any organism that doesn’t perform photosynthesis usually eats an organism that does to indirectly get the energy from the sun. However, there are living things very deep in the ocean near deep sea vents that do not need the sun to survive. They are so far down in the ocean that no sunlight reaches them and they get all of their energy from chemical dissolved in the water near the vents. Also the very first organisms that ever existed didn’t use photosynthesis and got their energy from chemicals like deep sea vent organisms. In different sense, every organism needs the heat provided by the sun because then the entire Earth would be too cold for any life to exist. So not every organism needs the energy of the sun for food, but all living things need the heat of the sun to survive.”


This recent discovery is not only essential for the establishment of a day not depending on the sunlight, but also because according to Genesis the Sun was not created until Day Four. The cycle of light and darkness upon the face of the earth does not define what a day is in the solar system. The rotation of the earth is what determines the 24hours of a period we call a day. We will address these by making the argument in support of meaning (2), the day is meant as a 24-hour cycle. Once the literal 24 hour meaning of the Yom is removed from the translation then all types of other timeframes and events in the Bible become questionable. These event of coarse would include, (1) was Adam created as a man or an ape? (2) Is the fall of man an actual event, or metaphoric? (2) If Adam was not a real man, then was Jesus? (3) Was death the result of sin or not? (4) Is there a need for a redeemer? (5) Is there an afterlife? (6) Do we need to have a moral law, or any law? Thank the Lord we can have confirmation in the context of the text immediately surrounding the word Yom, and in other scriptures and events. We also have witnesses and confirmation of others closer to the source, and the original author’s support documented.


The Hebrew word Yom is used 2,303 times in the Old Testament, of those Yom is used 1452 times in the singular. In Genesis 1 the predominant use of the word Yom is in the singular-referring to a 24- hour day. This is attested to the fact that the mentions of Yom in Genesis one are associated with a number. There is a sequence of numbers used here and there is no skipping around. When Yom is used in other places in the Bible with a number, it is used as a 24- hour sequence. The Pharisees in time of the gospel events held to this position that the days in Genesis were literally 24 hour days.


Moses believed in the literal 7 days of creation. The 10 Commandments, in establishing the Law of the Sabbath, refers back to Genesis 1:1-2:3. For in six days the LORD made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that in them is, and rested the seventh day: wherefore the LORD blessed the sabbath day, and hallowed it. (Exodus 20:11) This gives us the basis for our seven-day week. Or did God mistakenly say the wrong thing over and over when he was talking about how long the creation even took? When the information concerning genealogy records in Genesis chapters 5-10 are put together we can literally count backwards to the time that Adam was on the earth, and thus to the beginning of creation itself. Adam was 130 years old when he had Seth. Seth has Enosh when he was 105 years of age. At age 90 Enoch had his son Cainan. Cainan had Mahalalel when he was 70 years old. Mahalalel was 65 when he had Jared. Jared waited until he was 162 years old to have his son Enoch. Enoch was at the age of 65 when his son Methuselah was given birth to. Methuselah was 187 when he received his son Lamech. Lamech was 182 and had a son we are all familiar with, his name was NOAH. Noah had his sons starting when he was 500 years old. It is estimated by the texts that from Adam to Jesus was approximately 4000-5000 years, since Jesus’ resurrection it has been approximately 2000 years. These dates vary depending on the text, however in the matter of billions of years verses thousands they are close enough for the argument.


This historical record establishes the fact that the age of the earth is measured in thousands of years and not billions. Burt Lockwood wrote,
One needs to only examine historical records to know that we have pretty complete records for civilizations that existed down to the village and town (tribe) level up to 6 or 7 thousand years ago, and none earlier than that. Who wrote the history of 120,000 BC for example? Obviously, no one. Yet according to one scheme of man’s history, homonids (a primate of a family that includes humans and their fossil ancestors) no different than modern man existed up to 2 or 3 million years ago, and these “men and women” not physically different from us were not able to start recording history until 6 thousand years ago. Or could it be that history started 6 thousand years ago because that is when God created the universe and Adam and Eve? I leave that to your scholarship and wisdom to decide. Since Adam was created “very good,” I doubt he lacked in intelligence or ingenuity, and he lived much longer than any of us do today; so, he had plenty of time to figure out a written code. Even the native American Indians, who supposedly did not write, used colored beads (wampum) to record their histories, a method of code no longer available today, long lost.


If there were large geological periods then God would still be resting, but God is not resting. We know this because of his continued work in sustaining his creation. (Psalm 36:6; Hebrews 1:3; Colossians 1:17; 2 Peter 3:7) God does not need to rest, he rested to provide model for us, to give us time to reflect on his creation, as a testimony to his authority and his majesty. Isaiah wrote, “Hast thou not known? Hast thou not heard, that the everlasting God, the LORD, the Creator of the ends of the earth, fainteth not, neither is weary? there is no searching of his understanding. He giveth power to the faint; and to them that have no might he increaseth strength. Even the youths shall faint and be weary, and the young men shall utterly fall: But they that wait upon the LORD shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk, and not faint.” (Isaiah 40:28-31) God has given us a time of renewal in the Sabbath. This is a foretaste of the final rest we will receive when we have completed our kingdom work here on earth and joined him in his full presence in his kingdom.


Science itself has begun to dispute the old-earth view of the planet. The use of Carbon dating that was once used as a scientific tool to support an older earth has run into some issues. Not in the science of carbon dating, but in the presence of carbon in the fossil records. Carbon 14 has a theoretical longevity of 100,000 years. Anything older than that should not possess readable amounts of Carbon 14. The problem is that there has been numerous fossils and non-fossil findings from the Precambrian era that have Carbon 14. The Precambrian Era compasses all of the geologic time prior to 600 million years ago.

Paul Giem wrote in an article for Geoscience Research Institute:
It is interesting to follow the implications of the data further. Since it is believable that most fossil carbon has roughly the same 14C/C ratio, it is reasonable to conclude that all this carbon was in the biosphere at approximately the same time. In that case, since most, if not all, fossil carbon was deposited by water, the data suggest a flood of massive proportions, and that the biblical account has to be taken seriously. If the difference between fossil carbon and Precambrian carbon is approximately 0.05 pmc, and we assume that 0.05 pmc is the true level of residual carbon-14 in pre-Flood fossil carbon, then the first simplistic approximation to the time of burial of fossil carbon is 19,000 years ago. A reasonable upper limit for the time of burial is 25,000 years ago, and with favorable assumptions regarding the pre-burial 14C/C ratio, a time of burial as recent as 4,300 years ago (the traditional Masoretic date for the Flood) is not unreasonable from these considerations alone.
What this ongoing research seems to imply, is that the commonly accepted theories of evolution based of the current dating methods of using Fossil records, and the Geological Column are flawed. Either Carbon 14 dating cannot be trusted, do to error, contamination of subject material, or the assumptions of the Geological Column are inaccurate. This means the dating of fossils are in accurate also. This is because fossils found in certain layers of the Geological Column are given an assumed age according to the layer of the column they are found in. Amazingly enough that is also how the layer is aged also. The layers age is based on an assumption of what is found in the layer. We suppose that a layer is of a certain time frame because of the fossils found within it based on a chart that makes basic assumptions, needed to support the theory of evolution. The fossil and geological charts are both theoretical charts that are based on one another’s theory. The Carbon 14 dating based on those charts would also be proving inaccurate data, and in some cases the data would be conflicting. Even if we did assume that the layering of the earths surface (Geological Column) was indeed a method of measuring time, and that fossils that are found in a particular layer depicted when they animal or plant life died we would still have to come to grips with the fossils of sea animals found on the tops of mountains. In addition, thee are whole time periods in the Geological Column that are in reverse order and that are missing from wide areas of the globe. This would mean billions of years of discrepancy across the planets Geological Column. How then can we determine with any scientific accuracy which timeline to use? It seems more likely that a catastrophic event, like a world wide flood would have cause the rapid layering, and mixture of the fossil records. This would then be further evidence of the validity of the scripture by proving the Noahtic flood (2348 BC) did indeed happen as relayed in Genesis 6:9-9:17. Here is what the book of Psalms 104:3-9 explains on the flood.
Who layeth the beams of his chambers in the waters: who maketh the clouds his chariot: who walketh upon the wings of the wind: Who maketh his angels spirits; his ministers a flaming fire: Who laid the foundations of the earth, that it should not be removed for ever. Thou coveredst it with the deep as with a garment: the waters stood above the mountains. At thy rebuke they fled; at the voice of thy thunder they hasted away. They go up by the mountains; they go down by the valleys unto the place which thou hast founded for them. Thou hast set a bound that they may not pass over; that they turn not again to cover the earth.
Genesis claims that all human life on earth came from two people, Adam and Eve, as a divine act of God. When God created man, he made man distinct from all of the other creatures. (Genesis 1:26-27) The Apostle Paul tells us, “All flesh is not the same flesh: but there is one kind of flesh of men, and another flesh of beasts, another of fishes, and another of birds.” (1 Corinthians 15:39) and Genesis 2:7 it shows us that Adam and Eve were created in a very intimate way. “And the Lord God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul.” (Genesis 2:7) when we take this information and look back at chapter 1, where, the scripture shows that on the sixth day God created the beast and the animals.
And God said, Let the earth bring forth the living creature after his kind, cattle, and creeping thing, and beast of the earth after his kind: and it was so.And God made the beast of the earth after his kind, and cattle after their kind, and every thing that creepeth upon the earth after his kind: and God saw that it was good. And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness: and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth. So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them. And God blessed them, and God said unto them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth, and subdue it: and have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over every living thing that moveth upon the earth.(Genesis 1:24-28)


This scripture shows a separate entry of God creating man as a separate creation from the rest of the animals. This shows the distinction between man and beast, and man distinction from the other animals in creation. Between these two references we can see that man was not formed from any other animal. But he was formed as a separate being, man was formed by the hands of God, and this formation was from the dust on the ground, not from another animal. It also immediately gives man a purpose in existence. Man is to have dominion over the earth and every living thing. Man was created and given lordship from the very beginning. This is demonstrated later when God brings all the creatures of the earth to be named by Adam. This is the same exercise of dominion and authority we mentioned previously concerning God in the creation when he set boundaries and named things. Even so in the scripture it says, “And out of the ground the LORD God formed every beast of the field, and every fowl of the air; and brought them unto Adam to see what he would call them: and whatsoever Adam called every living creature, that was the name thereof.” (Genesis 2:19) So Adam had the authority to name, and whatever he named it, it was called that from then on.


This means that the creation of man was not an evolutionary process that took millions of years to complete, or employed a random development of thousands of increasingly complex organisms to reach our present state. We can also look at Genesis chapter 2 verse 23, “and Adam said, this is now bone of my bones, and flesh of my flesh: she shall be called woman, because she was taken out of man.” (Genesis 2:23) This little verse tells us that he did not have a mother. It also tells us that God and Adam were in communion, because, it is clear that, God informed Adam of how Eve was created. In verse 21 of the same chapter it tells us that Eve was created after God caused a deep sleep to fall upon Adam. While Adam slept the Lord God took one of Adam’s ribs close up his flesh and created Eve from that rib. This tells us that Man and Woman are each distinct and interdependent on one another. Man is made for Woman, and Woman is made for Man. Adam declared, “Therefore shall a man leave his father and his mother, and shall cleave unto his wife: and they shall be one flesh.” (Genesis 2:24)


Man is different from all other animals in many ways. Man has the ability to think in analytical terms. This means that man has a superior reasoning capability, we have the ability to discover how things work. This gives us a unique avenue available for us to study the creation event unlike no other animal can. We can discover the intelligence needed to create such a wonderful place like the earth, and the universe. Man has the ability to communicate on many different levels. Man can not only speak and communicate in many different languages and symbols, but we have the ability to learn and create new languages, and methods of communication.


We have the ability to design methods of communication that can talk to satellites that are at edge of our galaxy. Another form of communication we have is the ability to record and pass down historical events, like those recorded in Genesis. We communicate our impressions, and feelings through art, music, and liturgy. Mankind is the only creature that buries its dead. Man is the only creature that has a moral compass. Man is the only one who can know what is right from wrong, and good from evil. (Genesis 2:17) Having this ability gives us another uniqueness – since we have a moral code -the Creator can punish us for choosing to do what we know is wrong. However; there is something wondrous in this also, man alone had the ability to know God for who he is, and worship him in spirit and in truth. We have the ability to love God for who he is, our magnificent creator.


Jeremiah 10:12 says, “He has made the earth by his power, he has established the world by his wisdom, and has stretched out the heavens by his discretion.” When we look at all the sophistication of creation, with all the components that are necessary to create life, and the dependencies required to sustain it, we must understand that it took intelligence and great understanding in order to put in place the environment in which we live. God is the only power in or out of the universe they could have provided the energy necessary for the creation event. In his wisdom, he established the laws of physics, the laws of energy, the laws of time and space, and the laws of thermodynamics. In these unseen things, we can clearly see that there is one Creator, nothing happened by chance, and when the creation first made it was very good. (Genesis 1:31).


In Scripture we can see the God created the universe and man, and Israel, and the church to reveal his glory. Isaiah 43:7 tells us that everyone that is called by his name (speaking of the Lord) was created for him and his glory that were made by him and for him. The apostle Paul tells us in his letter to the Colossians, “for by him were all things created, that are in heaven, and that are in earth, visible and invisible, whether they be thrones, or dominions, or principalities, or powers: all things were created by him, and for him:” (Colossians 1:16). The psalmist David in Psalm 19 tells us the heavens declare the glory of God and the firmament shows his handiwork. He goes even further to tell us that all creation speaks in unknown language and shows its knowledge through all the earth concerning the creator our Lord God. This means, if we look and use true science, we can see the signs and we can read the language that all creation itself is declaring that God is its creator and gives him glory. We must understand that God did not need to create us, in order to make himself complete. God simply is. He whole in himself. Rather God created us to demonstrate his excellence. Creation shows us his great wisdom and power and ultimately it shows us his mercy and his lovingkindness in Jesus Christ. God created the universe simply to take delight in his creation. “For by him were all things created, that are in heaven, and that are in earth, visible and invisible, whether they be thrones, or dominions, or principalities, or powers: all things were created by him, and for him: And he is before all things, and by him all things consist.” (Colossians 1:16-17)


Much like a modeler creates a model just to see the finished work. He enjoys the work of his hands. We can also look at this way, a composer must compose because it is in his nature to do so. God created the universe to fulfill his own expectations. And God said the creation was good, then we can logically see that when God finished the creation it was complete, and it was good; everything was functioning as it should. So God took delight in it, and rested. “And on the seventh day God ended 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 in it He rested from all His work which God had created and made.” (Genesis 2:2-3)



Bibliography
26 May 2016. 14 August 2019. http://scienceline.ucsb.edu/getkey.php?key=5412.
Edgeworth, Dr. Arv. Dismantling Evolution Made Easy – A Simple Guide for taking Evolution apart, piece by piece. Unk, 2008. PDF. 13 August 2019.
Gawne, Richard. American Institute of Biological Sciences. Vers. Volume 65, Issue 11, Pages 1077-1083. 30 September 2015. Internet. 20 August 2019. https://academic.oup.com/bioscience/article/65/11/1077/374311.
Giem, Paul A. Origins. 1 Jan 2001. Internet. 29 Jul 2019. https://www.grisda.org/origins-51006.
Jr, Gleason L. Archer. “Theological Wordbook of the Old Testament.” Harris, R. Laird. Moody Press, 2003. 29 July 2019.
Lockwood, Burt. The Fulness of Time. 14 February 2017. Web. 9 August 2019. http://www.blogos.org/exploringtheword/adam-Jesus-timeline.php.
Patterson, Roger. Chapter 6 Grological Column. 20 January 2011. 21 August 2019. https://answersingenesis.org/geology/geologic-time-scale/geologic-column/.
Staff. Age of Earth. 2014. 9 August 2019. https://genesisapologetics.com/faqs/age-of-the-earth-does-the-bible-really-say-that-god-created-everything-in-six-days-just-6000-years-ago/.
Urey, Harold C. Christian Science Monitor 4 January 1962: 4. Magazine.

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The Importance of Baptism

“Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost.” Acts 2:38 (King James Version)

Baptism, a tradition in our common faith, that a number of us do without full knowledge of how important this act is. Quite often, we are baptized at a young age before we know the importance and the meaning of the act of baptism. Now, that is not necessarily a bad thing, plenty of people in the Bible as we will discuss we simply told be baptized and so they got baptized. Though as you mature in your faith, it becomes important to understand just how import this symbolic act is.

The act of Baptism was so important to God, that Christ Himself got baptized and is one of 8 events that is recorded in each of the gospels (the others being: call of the first disciples, Christ’s entry into Jerusalem, the agony at Gethsemane, Judas’ betrayal of Christ, Peter’s denial of Christ, Christ before Pilot, then the death, burial, and resurrection). You can read the story in John 1:29-34, Luke 3:21-22, Matthew 3:13-17, and Mark 1:1-11. Mark 1:1-8 reads as this:

The beginning of the gospel of Jesus Christ, the Son of God; As it is written in the            prophets, Behold, I send my messenger before thy face, which shall prepare thy way before thee. The voice of one crying in the wilderness, Prepare ye the way of the Lord, make his paths straight. John did baptize in the wilderness, and preach the baptism of repentance for the remission of sins. And there went out unto him all the land of Judaea, and they of Jerusalem, and were all baptized of him in the river of Jordan, confessing their sins. And John was clothed with camel’s hair, and with a girdle of a skin about his loins; and he did eat locusts and wild honey; And preached, saying, There cometh one mightier than I after me, the latchet of whose shoes I am not worthy to stoop down and   unloose. I indeed have baptized you with water: but he shall baptize you with the Holy Ghost. (KJV)

And Matthew 3:13-17 gives us a better completion of the story:

13 Then cometh Jesus from Galilee to Jordan unto John, to be baptized of him. But John forbad him, saying, I have need to be baptized of thee, and comest thou to me? And Jesus answering said unto him, Suffer it to be so now: for thus it becometh us to fulfil all  righteousness. Then he suffered him. And Jesus, when he was baptized, went up straightway out of the water: and, lo, the heavens were opened unto him, and he saw the  Spirit of God descending like a dove, and lighting upon him: And lo a voice from heaven,   saying, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased. (KJV)

Christ felt it to be so important to be baptized that He led the way with His own example. Then God, the Father said He was well pleased with His Son for the act of righteousness and faithfulness. So, if God almighty humbles Himself to be baptized, that should speak to the level of levity that this act has.

So, what is the big deal??? Well, Paul writes on that subject in Romans 6:4-11:

Therefore we are buried with him by baptism into death: that like as Christ was raised up from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life. For if we have been planted together in the likeness of his death, we shall be also in the likeness of his resurrection: Knowing this, that our old man is crucified with him, that the body of sin might be destroyed, that henceforth we should not serve sin. For he that is dead is freed from sin. Now if we be dead with Christ, we believe that we shall also live with him: Knowing that Christ being raised from the dead dieth no more; death hath no more dominion over him. For in that he died, he died unto sin once: but in that he liveth, he liveth unto God. Likewise reckon ye also yourselves to be dead indeed unto sin, but alive unto God through Jesus Christ our Lord. (KJV)

It is the marking of our new life as believer’s. Used to be the circumcision, but now our mark which also serves as an outward symbol and metaphor for the death, and resurrection of Christ. To show the world that we are no longer who we used to be. That from that day forward we are Christians, followers of Christ renewed by the Spirit of God. The act of being fully submerged is the dying to our former selves as Christ died on the cross to take away our sins, and then the reemergence from the water a parallel to the resurrection of Christ in that a promise was fulfilled and our sins are no more. When we are baptized it is our symbol of dedication and a public testimony that Christ has begun this work of Salvation in us that will be completed on Christ’s return (Phil 1:6).

It marks the beginning of the relationship that you have with God. Like getting a friend request on Facebook or other social media, God has sent the request to everyone. And when you repent and accept Jesus as Lord, and Savior, that is you accepting the friend request. But, what makes a friend special on Facebook? It is the one you tag in everything, and the one that you talk about how proud you are to know them! Think of baptism as your first tagging of God in your life! That is the first moment that you acknowledge and profess Him before all of man! That is what is so important about baptism. What is the point of accepting Christ if you are ashamed of Him? There is no point, baptism is merely the completion of your old life and marks the beginning of your new one.

We can see this in the life of Paul, formerly known as Saul. In Acts 9, we read of Saul’s redemptive encounter with Christ on the road to Damascus, but his new life did not begin until he was baptized by Ananias (Acts 9:10-19). After his baptism Saul became one of the greatest apostles of Christ and went on to author the majority of the New Testament. Another great way to think about it is this: A brother in Christ once told me about this riddle. There are 7 birds on the wire, and all 7 decide to fly away. How many flew away? The answer might surprise you, but the answer is 0. None flew away, all 7 are still sitting on the wire. Just because you decide to do something, does not mean you have actually done it. This is the same with repentance and acceptance of Christ. If you never take the first step of Baptism, then have you truly dedicated your life to God?

In the Great Commission given to us in Mark 16:15-17 we are commanded to go all over the world and preach the gospel and “He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned” (Mark 16:16, KJV). We are actually commanded to believe and be baptized! The book of Acts contains another great example, in Acts 8:26-39 we have the story of the Ethiopian Eunuch. Now, eunuch was a man that was devoted to purity of not only himself but of generally a lady he protected or some position that he held. In other words, they were men of righteousness and were beyond reproach. In this story, we can tell he clearly believed the word of God, he just did not quite understand it. Phillip was directed to go and preach to this Eunuch that he might understand the word of God. The eunuch, having it been placed on his heart, was full of conviction and asked Phillip to baptize him then and there on the middle of the road, in the middle of nowhere. That is how important baptism should be to us as believers!

The act of baptism should so important to us that when we confess our belief in Christ that we should straightway seek to act on that belief and be baptized! Even Christ did not begin His ministry until He was baptized! If nothing else is gained out of this, then remember that the Lord, your God, decided it was so important to Him that we should be baptized when we come to Him that He set the example and began His earthly ministry by being baptized. Now, yes Christ had performed miracles and even preached before then, but He did not set out to complete His Father’s work until after being baptized.

All of that to say this, baptism; is it important to your belief? Yes, we are all called to be baptized. If you are still having doubts about this whole Jesus is Lord talk, then I would encourage you to check out the other posts on this site and really read into the Bible for yourself and put to test the things you read in it! God is still in the miracle business, let the next one He works be in the transforming of your life! Repent of your sins, believe in your heart, and confess that Jesus is Lord and follow it up with baptism, and be saved! A future without worry of what comes after death is just a prayer away! If you have questions, please feel free to email us at twocministries@gmail.com . God Bless You, and have a Wonderfully Blessed Day!

7 Reasons for Pre-Tribulation Rapture

“Jesus saith unto him, Thou hast said: nevertheless I say unto you, Hereafter shall ye see the Son of man sitting on the right hand of power, and coming in the clouds of heaven.”
Matthew 26:64, KJV

7 Reasons for Pre-Tribulation Rapture

  • Tribulation Period Concerns Israel Jeremiah 30:7
    • Old Testament foretells a time of tribulation for Israel
    • Daniel 9:24 – “Seventy weeks are determined upon thy people and upon thy holy city, to finish the transgression, and to make an end of sins, and to make reconciliation for iniquity, and to bring in everlasting righteousness, and to seal up the vision and prophecy, and to anoint the most Holy.”
    • Daniel 12:7 – “And I heard the man clothed in linen, which was upon the waters of the river, when he held up his right hand and his left hand unto heaven, and sware by him that liveth for ever that it shall be for a time, times, and an half; and when he shall have accomplished to scatter the power of the holy people, all these things shall be finished.”
    • God uses Israel and the church on a mutually exclusive basis
      • God is Using Israel witness of God to the world (4-22)
        • Israel is a nation that needs to believe in Jesus as the Messiah
        • National distinction of Israel is brought forward
        • Revelation 7 – 144,000 Jews
        • Revelation 11 – Two Jewish witnesses
        • Revelation 12 – Israel flees
          • Describes Israel
            • clothed with sun, and moon, and stars
            • Crown of 12 (tribes?)
            • Gave birth to a child to rule all nations (Jesus?)
          • Genesis 37:9-10
            • Refers to sun, moon and stars(Israel) bowing to Joseph (Jesus)
      • The Church is the witness of God in the period of grace
        • Galatians 3:28 – There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither bond nor free, there is neither male nor female: for ye are all one in Christ Jesus.
        • The church is many nations and ethnicities
        • The church is not a country it is a Kingdom already under God in Christ
        • Revelation 1:20 – says the seven lampstands are the seven church in the presence of God
        • Revelation 4:5 – Seven lamps of fire burning before the throne
  • No Biblical reference to the church on earth during the Tribulation period (Rev 4-22)
    • Revelation 1:19 – “Write the things which thou hast seen, and the things which are, and the things which shall be hereafter;”
    • Seen (1) – Glorified Christ
    • Are (2-3) – Letters to the Churches of Asia Minor
    • Which Shall Be (4-22) – Future of events to come
    • The Greek word for church is used
      • 19 times in chapters 1-3
      • 0 times in chapters 4-19
      • Mentioned in closing of Revelation
    • Comparison of statements
      • Revelation 3:22 – “He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches.”
      • Revelation 13:9 – “If any man have an ear, let him hear.”
      • The addressing of the church is left out of Chapter 13.
  • Church is promised an exemption from diving wrath (1 Thess 1:10; 5:9; Rom 5:9; Rev 3:10: 6:17)
    • The same word for Wrath is used…
    • The promise
      • 1 Thessalonians 1:10 – And to wait for his Son from heaven, whom he raised from the dead, even Jesus, which delivered us from the wrath to come.
      • 1 Thessalonians 5:9 – For God hath not appointed us to wrath, but to obtain salvation by our Lord Jesus Christ,
      • Romans 5:9 – Much more then, being now justified by his blood, we shall be saved from wrath through him.
      • Revelation 3:10 – Because thou hast kept the word of my patience, I also will keep thee from the hour of temptation, which shall come upon all the world, to try them that dwell upon the earth.
    • Tribulation = Devine Wrath
      • Revelation 6:16-17 – And said to the mountains and rocks, Fall on us, and hide us from the face of him that sitteth on the throne, and from the wrath of the Lamb: For the great day of his wrath is come; and who shall be able to stand?
      • Revelation 11:18 – And the nations were angry, and thy wrath is come, and the time of the dead, that they should be judged, and that thou shouldest give reward unto thy servants the prophets, and to the saints, and them that fear thy name, small and great; and shouldest destroy them which destroy the earth.
      • Revelation 15:1,7 – And I saw another sign in heaven, great and marvellous, seven angels having the seven last plagues; for in them is filled up the wrath of God…… And one of the four beasts gave unto the seven angels seven golden vials full of the wrath of God, who liveth for ever and ever.
      • Revelation 16:19 – And the great city was divided into three parts, and the cities of the nations fell: and great Babylon came in remembrance before God, to give unto her the cup of the wine of the fierceness of his wrath.
    • Where is Jesus- He is in control!
      • Seven Sealed Scroll (5:1)
      • John weeps (5:2-4)
      • Christ is qualified (5:5-6)
      • Christ takes the scroll (5:7)
      • Christ glorified (5:8-14)
  • Rapture is imminent (1 Cor 15:51; 1 Thess 4:15)
    • Because the rapture is imminent is must take place before the tribulation begins
      • It can happen at any time (pending)
      • Sign-less Event – no prophetic sign needed to trigger the rapture
      • James 5:8 – The Lords Coming is near
      • 1 Cor 1:7 – eagerly waiting on the revelation of Jesus
      • We are not looking for an antichrist – we are looking for Christ!
    • What of the 4 Tribulation/ Rapture beliefs support imminence?
      • Pre-wrath = believe rapture happens after the Great Tribulation has begun – so no there are signs that have to be fulfilled still
      • Post-Tribulation = Believe the rapture occurs after the 7 years of tribulation = so no there are signs that have to be fulfilled still
      • Mid-Tribulation = Believe the rapture occurs after the 1st 3 ½ years of tribulation = so no there are signs that have to be fulfilled still
      • Pre-Tribulation = Believe that rapture occurs before the tribulation period = yes, no signs needed for Jesus to return, his return is imminent.
  • Rapture is a comfort to Christ’s followers
    • 1 Thessalonians 4:18 – “Wherefore comfort one another with these words.” (Paul revealed the doctrine of the rapture and said for us to ease one another with this information.  
    • Titus 3:13 – “Looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ;”
    • Which view of the rapture truly brings comfort to your soul?
  • Antichrist cannot come to power until the restrainer is removed (2 Thess 2:6-7)
    • 2 Thessalonians 2:6-7 – “And now ye know what withholdeth that he might be revealed in his time. For the mystery of iniquity doth already work: only he who now letteth will let, until he be taken out of the way.”
    • What starts the Tribulation?
      • Dan 9:27 – And he shall confirm the covenant with many for one week: and in the midst of the week he shall cause the sacrifice and the oblation to cease, and for the overspreading of abominations he shall make it desolate, even until the consummation, and that determined shall be poured upon the desolate.
      • Covenant with Israel
  • Restrainer Must be Removed before Antichrist Revealed
    • 2 Thess. 2:6-7 = Restrainer = Holy Spirit
      • John 14:16; Romans 8:9 = Holy Spirit indwells believers
      • Believes along with the Holy Spirit must be absent from the earth
  • Symbolic parallels (2 Peter 2:5-9)
    • Luke 17:26-30 – as in the days of Noah (the day the Lot went out…)
    • Enoch taken before the flood (Gen 5:24)
    • Noah protected before the flood (Gen 7:6-7)
    • Lot taken before judgement on Sodom (2 Pet 2:7; Gen 19:22)
      • “Haste thee, escape thither; for I cannot do any thing till thou be come thither. Therefore the name of the city was called Zoar.” (Gen 19:22)

Is That What He Said? Hebrews 1:1-3

In was looking at a post on Facebook that was made concerning Hebrews 1:2.  When I saw the content of the post, I was taken back in horror.  In the thread of the message the one who posted said, “God spoke himself into existence in his own image” (referring to Jesus).  I immediately went to Hebrews and read it, just in case I was ignorant of this fact.  I always like to get a little context in a verse that someone quotes, so I started from the beginning.

“God, who at sundry times and in divers manners spake in time past unto the fathers by the prophets, Hath in these last days spoken unto us by his Son, whom he hath appointed heir of all things, by whom also he made the worlds;  Who being the brightness of his glory, and the express image of his person, and upholding all things by the word of his power, when he had by himself purged our sins, and sat down on the right hand of the Majesty on high: Being made so much better than the angels, as he hath by inheritance obtained a more excellent name than they.” (Hebrews 1:1-4)

 Okay, now this does talk about God the Father, and Jesus the Son of God.  This set of verses is more concerned with establishing the superiority of Jesus over the prophets.  It is not a creation verse at all.  God, is not speaking anything into existence.  How could God speak himself into existence?  I mean I know that we tell ourselves that God can do anything, but there is a definite law of logic being broken here.  That being put aside, let us look at another aspect of creation.  Genesis chapters one and two explain the events of creation.  It never mentions God creating himself or his son. In addition, it says at each stage of creation and then at the final stage of creation that it was “good”.  This means that it was pleasing and completed.  But there is something else in this event that you may not be aware of.  Turn to the Gospel of John.  Starting at verse one it reads, “IN the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.  The same was in the beginning with God.  All things were made by him; and without him was not anything made that was made.” (John 1:1-3)   John 1:10 goes on to say concerning Jesus that, “He was in the world, and the world was made by him, and the world knew him not.” So this means that Jesus was not created by God in the flesh, or that Jesus was a man who eventually became God.  What this means is that Jesus always existed as the Son of God.  It also reveals to us that Jesus is the one who created everything, by his word.  He was the word of God who said, “Let there be light”… So what does this set of verses say?

First it tells how God has changed his messenger with mankind.  It starts by letting us know that historically in many different ways (though laws, kings, judges, ceremonies) in different places (lands, wildernesses, mountain tops), God spoke to men through designated men, called prophets.  These prophets are men like Isaiah, Jeremiah, and Jonah who God gave messaged to and signs to prove his message.  However; now God recently chose to speak to us through his only begotten son. (John 3:16) This term, “in these last days”, refers to the time period between the birth and ascension of Jesus Christ. His Son (Jesus) was chosen as the beneficiary of all things, and was the creator of the universe and all that is in it.  It was Jesus who revealed to us the nature of God the Father himself. 

“Jesus saith unto him, Have I been so long time with you, and yet hast thou not known me, Philip? he that hath seen me hath seen the Father; and how sayest thou then, Show us the Father? Believest thou not that I am in the Father, and the Father in me? the words that I speak unto you I speak not of myself: but the Father that dwelleth in me, he doeth the works. Believe me that I am in the Father, and the Father in me: or else believe me for the very works’ sake.” (John 14:9-11)

Jesus answered them, and said, My doctrine is not mine, but his that sent me. (John 7:16)

What the Law and the Prophets could not do, in that they were limited both in time and ability, Jesus was able to commit and fulfill to mankind.  You see Jesus came as a sort of ambassador of the Kingdom of Heaven, in order to reveal the love of God to mankind.  He demonstrated this love in his message, his daily living, his miracles, and in his death, burial, and resurrection.  Then he describes Jesus, he says “being the brightness of his glory”, this does not mean that he was a reflection, but rather an outshining light or radiance.  This means that Jesus was an exact representation of God’s essence and nature. This is why Jesus said, “this is the condemnation, that light is come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil.” (John 3:19)  You see what Hebrews 1:1-3 is saying?  Jesus, who is the very Son of God, came and directly revealed God to men.  The ultimate authority in the universe.  He could have come to condemn.  He could have come, as the Greek and Roman gods were believed, to play cruel games with us.  But Jesus did not come to judge us or to play games.  He has all authority in the universe to do whatever he chooses; he chose to love us.  God was not born a man, he became a man.  He came to seek us out, and show us the way.  “For the Son of man is come to seek and to save that which was lost.” (Luke 19:10)

As Hebrews 1:3 says, he purged himself of our sins.  Purging is a process of elimination. That means that he had to receive our sins in the first place. Once he tool our sins on him, he was judged for the sin and died.  The penalty of sin is death. He took this penalty on for us.  But he went much further, in assuming the responsibility for the sin, he removed it from us.  Being God, he cannot die, so then he purged himself of our sin.  This means that the sin that held us is permanently gone.  We have been set free from that penalty, and the bonds of sin. Jesus now has taken his rightful place and is seated at the right hand of God the Father.  Jesus is there in his throne, with all of his power and all of his authority.  That is what the author of Hebrews is talking about. 

I encourage you to look into the scriptures to see if what I am saying is true.  It is my desire that you do not take my word, or anyone’s word over scripture.  Test, and challenge what is said by your teachers, pastors, and myself.  Prove all things; hold fast that which is good. (1 Thessalonians 5:21)

Luke 11 Teach Us to Pray – Part 2

Luke 11 Teach Us to Pray – Part 2

The closest disciples to Jesus had witnessed miracles.  They had seen the lame to walk, the blind to see, and the lepers healed.  Scripture tells us repeatedly; Jesus healed all who came to him.  The early disciples were eyewitnesses to these things, and many more.  The closeness of their relationship to Jesus gave them an insider’s view.

They must have noticed the way Jesus prepared himself each day.  They would have seen his dedicated prayer life.  They would have heard the prayers that Jesus prayed for healing. They herd the prayers of thanksgiving that rolled from his lips.  In hearing these and seeing the wonders wrought through this prayer fed lifestyle they were forced to examine their own prayer life.

In doing so, they could see that they fell short.  With all of their religious efforts, all of their sacrifices, all of their Hebrew upbringing, they had somehow missed this important lesson. It felt like the doors to heaven itself were sealed closed. In seeing Jesus’ prayer life and the results of his prayers on his ministry, then knew that they needed to know more.  So they asked him the same question that many of us ask today, “Lord teach us to pray”….

And he said unto them, When ye pray, say, Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done, as in heaven, so in earth. (Luke 11:2)

Now we see Jesus beginning his teaching of what an effectual prayer should be like.  He said, “When ye pray say”. There are allot of individuals who miss understand this phrase.  Some have mistakenly taken this to mean that what Jesus is about to say, should be said verbatim.  That is that is should be repeated word-for-word, or else you have not said a prayer.

Some believe that there is some supernatural binding to this prayer when recited exactly as written, God himself has to answer whatever follows. Some think that you have earned some special audience with God as a result of reciting this prayer.  There are thousands who believe that atonement can be made by reciting this prayer over and over.  This is not the case.  God cannot be invoked. You cannot summon him like some ethereal game piece. He is the Almighty, the creator of the universe who has all autonomous authority.  Meaning that God as God is self sufficient and answers to no one.

Luke is not saying to repeat identically each word and stanza that Jesus said.  The Greek words usage, in this phrase, infers that Jesus wanted them to “say” in the same manner or way; not implying an obligation to repeat the exact verbiage. Repeating the Lord’s Prayer line-by-line, or even over and over again does not bring salvation and is not a means of penance.

It is probably better to look at the translation in Matthew’s recording of the same teachings in order to give us another disciple’s point of view of this important message.  Matthew records, “After this manner therefore pray ye: Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name.” (Matthew 6:9).  In this catalog of the event, Matthew clearly states that we should pray in the same manner, or “in this way” (Strong’s, 3778,3779) that Jesus then instructs his disciples to pray. So when you pray, pray something like this…

Our Father which art in heaven… I do not know if you know this, but the carnal minded cannot please God.  In all honesty there are some people praying, that really don’t have any faith that God exists.  There are those that believe God exists but that he doesn’t care and is uninvolved in men’s lives.  They are just throwing up their hands and speaking to the clouds and hoping that “if” there is a God, he will prove it in answering their prayer.

The Word of God tells us that without faith it is impossible to please God, and those that come to him must first believe that He IS.  Secondly the scriptures tell that God rewards those who seek him persistently. In addition, scripture tells us that those who believe on Jesus have been adopted into the family of God, as his children. Romans 8:14-16 says, “For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God. For ye have not received the spirit of bondage again to fear; but ye have received the Spirit of adoption, whereby we cry, Abba, Father. The Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God:”

So then, since we have already believed that He is and that He rewards those who seek him, and believe that He has already adopted us as children through Jesus Christ, we can then boldly come to him.  Seeking him ourselves.  We can call him Father, because he literally is our Father. I am getting excited already!

Jesus further clarifies the importance of this relationship later in the chapter when he explains the nature of the Father.  Jesus explains, “If a son shall ask bread of any of you that is a father, will he give him a stone? or if he ask a fish, will he for a fish give him a serpent? Or if he shall ask an egg, will he offer him a scorpion? If ye then, being evil, know how to give good gifts unto your children: how much more shall your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to them that ask him?” (Luke 11:11-13) WOW! Nail on the head!  Did you see that! Jesus said that even though we are evil, we still know how to give good things, then he said… that God is Good! So- if God is Good, then how much more does he have the ability and will to give good things to those who ask?

Jesus asked a rhetorical question, how much more will your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those (his children) who ask of him?  I love my children and I can honestly tell you that one of the most heartbreaking things that a father has to face is when one of his children ask him for something that he cannot provide.  It never gets easier, and it does not matter which child asks.  You see as a father, I want to give all kinds of good gifts to my children because I love them, and I love being able to provide for them. I love being able to protect them. I love for them to look to me when they are in trouble, or even when they just need someone to listen.  I love being a confident to each and everyone of my children.  But you know, there are times when I can provide for them, but I don’t, because; they do not ask for me to.  If they don’t ask for my help, knowing that I want to help. I cannot help them though, if they don’t ask me to.  Why? Because it is their choice to make, not mine.

So first we must ask, then he will give.  Now he did specify what he would give, that is the Holy Spirit, but look he also said how much more… this means how much more willing is he to give the Holy Spirit.  It is like he is just there waiting for you to ask, and BAM! It is on the way! Now this is not a teaching on the Holy Spirit, but since it was brought up.  What good does that do?  The Holy Spirit does many things for the believer, just as a quick list; he is our comforter, he is a teacher, he is a counselor, he is an encourager, and many more things to us.  The Holy Spirit is the seal of God on our lives.  The Father gives the Holy Spirit whole heartedly, in fact scripture says that the Spirit of God indwells those who follow Jesus Christ.

Which art in heaven… The Creator of the universe exists outside of normal time and space, He is not hindered by laws of physics or the limits of mans imagination.  He does not dwell in little wooden crucifixes or crosses for that matter.  Those things are made my man, and cannot contain God.  The earth as a whole cannot contain God.  If the universe could contain God then what kind of a God would He be?  No God is above all powers and principalities.  God exists outside of our universe.  In scripture the heavens are referred to in three different arenas.  The first arena of the heavens referred to is the atmosphere of the earth.  This covers what we breath, the ozone which includes the clouds and weather.  The second spectrum that the heavens refers to is our universe.  This convers from the atmosphere on our into the area we call space.  Where the universe with it’s multiple galaxies spin and collide.  The third area that scripture refers to heaven is the place that is outside of time and space, the area where God resides.  This is Gods place from which He over sees all of creation.  Creation includes, the universe, the multiple galaxies, and the earth.

“Thus saith the Lord, The heaven is my throne, and the earth is my footstool: where is the house that ye build unto me? And where is the place of my rest?” (Isaiah 66:1)

We now begin to see that when we come to the Lord God Almighty, we need to have an understanding of who He is.  We need to know that “he IS”.  We need to know that he is above all other things in existence.  If we don’t believe this about God, then why should we waste our time in seeking Him out? This then is where faith begins.

Faith doesn’t start with a warm fuzzy feeling, or some emotional high after a revival.  Faith begins with a proper understanding of God.  A proper understanding of God comes from scripture.  There are NO secular authorities on God.  There are no scientific rules that can determine that God does not exist.

Scripture tells us that the very design of creation points to the fact that God exists, “The heavens declare the glory of God; and the firmament sheweth his handywork. Day unto day uttereth speech, and night unto night sheweth knowledge. There is no speech nor language, where their voice is not heard. Their line is gone out through all the earth, and their words to the end of the world. In them hath he set a tabernacle for the sun, Which is as a bridegroom coming out of his chamber, and rejoiceth as a strong man to run a race. His going forth is from the end of the heaven, and his circuit unto the ends of it: and there is nothing hid from the heat thereof.” (Psalm 19:1-6).  There is no excuse under heaven to NOT believe in God.

Hallowed be thy name… Hallowed means to be sanctified or set apart. This term set apart means to be unique, or different than anything else.  The manner that this refers to in saying hallowed be thy name is to mentally set his name apart in such a manner to bring honor to his name, by counting Him as holy. Acknowledging that God alone is holy. God is unique. God alone is good.  We need to have an understanding of the reverence that God deserves.  My children have an open door to me at any time.  We play around and kid one another.  We also pull pranks on one another from time to time.  We tell jokes, we fish, we camp.  We do all the informal things that fathers and their children do.  Do you know with all of that familiarity, they still address me as “sir”?  Why is that?  Because with everything we share, there is one thing we do not share… we are not peers. My children respect me as their father, and as an elder.

We should respect God in the same manner, as one who is our Father, and one who is Holy. In fact scripture says that we should mimic our Father, just like sons do to their earthly fathers. Peter wrote, “but like the Holy One who called you, be holy yourselves also in all your behavior;” (1 Peter1:15).  See if you believe that God is holy, and that you are called by his name, then you should honor him by being Holy in your behavior.  Faith breeds action.

Not so long ago, a man’s name was his reputation.  This is because everyone knows that you actually can judge a book by its cover.  Now I know this is contrary to the whole “why can’t we all just get along” politically correct stance that has paralyzed the entire human race.  What was meant as a good thing about not being to hard on someone who has fallen on hard times, has now gone to the extreme.  This saying and many others like “who are you to judge me?”, while many claim to be bible based, are twisted doctrines straight from the enemy.  Scripture in no manner ever says that a man should be lazy, if he can work.

If a man has shown himself untrustworthy, unsafe to be around, or in need of being imprisoned then that is the reputation of the man, that he has earned by his actions.  Not because someone judged him.  That man’s name is dirt.  Not so long ago, people understood that.  I know you think I have gotten off topic, but take a look again at the verse… thy name.  See I am still here.  The other part to “hallowed by thy name” is being able to trust in that “name”.  This is more important than you realize.  Being able to trust in that name is more than just getting your prayers answered.  It is the key to life itself.  In Acts 4:12 we read;

Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is no other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved.

This was the Apostle Peter talking about Jesus of Nazareth who was crucified by the Romans at the behest of the Jews.  This Jesus rose from the grave and is now in the presence of the Father where he makes intercessory prayers for us.  This intercessory prayer is the true “Lords Prayer”, which goes up continuously on our behalf.  What have we to fear?

If we do not believe these simple truths about God then we need not go any further.  You see in order to ask God anything and expect that He will answer we must at a minimum believe:

  • God Exists
  • He is unique in any and every way
  • He is our Heavenly Father
  • He has all authority
  • He is willing to listen to us and to answer us
  • He is good and desires good things for his children
  • Jesus is the only way to the Father

Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done, as in heaven, so in earth…  We also see in this opening that prayer is about our relationship to God.  Knowing who He is, accepting of Jesus and Lord and Savior and seeking His guidance.  Prayer is foremost an acknowledgement of our responsibilities to God. Prayer is not about getting mans will done in heaven, but getting God’s will done on earth.  Prayer is asking God to use us in a manner that is pleasing to Him to accomplish what He needs done.  God is the one who is to be glorified in our lives, not us. We pray for His kingdom to be expanded and strengthened.  You see we are wanting his kingdom to come because we understand that no one can make peace here on earth, but God.  On one can make us whole, but God.  No one can take away our pains and fears, but God himself.

James says, “Ye ask, and receive not, because ye ask amiss, that ye may consume it upon your lusts.” (James 4:3).  That is when you do ask, you ask for the wrong things and for the wrong reasons.  Selfish desires are not what prayer is for.  Here is another way to look at it.  What heavenly good does it really do for my little league team to win the ballgame?   Or how does my getting a new car further the advancement of the gospel?  Am I really praying for what I need to be walk in the spirit of God?  Notice I did not include prayers for legitimate needs.  Needs like deliverance from addictions, sicknesses, disease, or even financial burdens.  These prayers can affect your spiritual maturity and the furtherance of the gospel.  These are legitimate prayer needs.  These types of prayers should be done for ourselves and for one another.  These prayers show love and concern for one another.

Prayers for those in authority are also legitimate prayers that we are actually commanded we should pray.  We should pray for those who use you and persecute you for Christ’s namesake.  Prayers should be offered for all men everywhere.  We should pray for the widows, and orphans.  We should pray for the blind, that they may see.  We should pray for the lost, that they may seek and find Jesus.  This is the will of God.  These prayers bring the kingdom of God here to the earth where men live and breathe.  By praying these sorts of prayer and inviting God to take part in our governments, and in our schools, and in our neighborhoods, and churches we are seeking God in a manner that is pleasing to him.  These are unselfish prayers.

The challenge this week if to set some time apart to tell God that you do believe in Him, and his Son.  Pray for the Spirit to teach you what you should know.  Pray for someone else, that God may reveal Himself to them.  Pray that God will show you how to further His kingdom in your neighborhood.  Go  and be His ambassador, and his child.

The New Covenant and The Lords Supper

The New Covenant and The Lords Supper

Ref: Luke 22:20

“And he took bread, and gave thanks, and brake it, and gave unto them, saying, This is my body which is given for you: this do in remembrance of me.

Likewise also the cup after supper, saying, This cup is the new testament in my blood, which is shed for you.”

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We know from Luke 22:19-20 that when Jesus offered up his body on the cross and poured out his blood, so that we might be forgiven of our sins, he was inaugurating and establishing the New Covenant. Here is how Luke records it: “Likewise also the cup after supper, saying, This cup is the new testament in my blood, which is shed for you.”

The New Covenant

  1. The New Covenant was promised of God:

Jeremiah 31: 32-34 “Behold, the days come, saith the LORD, that I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel, and with the house of Judah: Not according to the covenant that I made with their fathers in the day that I took them by the hand to bring them out of the land of Egypt; which my covenant they brake, although I was an husband unto them, saith the LORD: But this shall be the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel; After those days, saith the LORD, I will put my law in their inward parts, and write it in their hearts; and will be their God, and they shall be my people. And they shall teach no more every man his neighbor, and every man his brother, saying, Know the LORD: for they shall all know me, from the least of them unto the greatest of them, saith the LORD: for I will forgive their iniquity, and I will remember their sin no more.” 

In the book of Hebrews, the Apostle Paul wrote concerning Jesus and the New Covenant.  in doing so he referenced this scripture when he said: “This is the covenant that I will make with them after those days, saith the Lord, I will put my laws into their hearts, and in their minds will I write them; And their sins and iniquities will I remember no more.” (Hebrews 10:16-17)

The prophet John the Baptist observed Jesus coming towards him and procalimed, ”Behold the Lamb of God which taketh away the sins of the world.” (John 1:29).  This is a further witness that Jesus would be the one who would put the New Covenant in to effect.

  • The New Covenant is the promise that God made with man that He will forgive sins and restore fellowship with those who hear and are turned towards Him.
  • Jesus Christ is the mediator of the New Covenant.
  • His death on the cross it the basis of this New Covenant 

2.  The New Covenant was instituted by the Lord himself

  • The Old Covenant was an agreement between God and the children of Israel. We have the record of it in the Old Testament.

Exodus 24:8 says, “And Moses took the blood (of the sacrifice), and sprinkled it on the people, and said, Behold the blood of the covenant, which the LORD hath made with you concerning all these words.”

 

  • The New Covenant is an agreement between God and Jesus Christ. (Therefore it includes all who are united with Jesus Christ, or as the Bible says, all those who are “in Christ.”) There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit. For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus hath made me free from the law of sin and death. (Romans 8:1-2)

 

  • The New Covenant did not start until after the death of Jesus Christ. For it was sealed by the precious blood of Jesus paying the price for the complete remission of sins for all who believe in Him.

 

  • Jesus himself plainly said the New Covenant involved His blood being shed.

MATTHEW 26:28 “For this is My blood of the new covenant, which is shed for many for the remission of sins. 

3.  It Supersedes the Old Covenant

  • Because the New Covenant is not with man, who could never fulfill his end of the covenant, but with Jesus, who did fulfill the covenant, it is secure for all eternity.
  • The point here is that with the New Covenant that Christ established and the gift of the Holy Spirit who indwells all its members, we not only know what to do, we also have been given the power and strength to do it with the proper motivation -Love!
  • The Old Testament required animal sacrifices who could only cover a man’s sin for a temporary time period, but the sacrifice that Jesus made removed our sins forever!

Hebrews 10:17-18 ”And their sins and iniquities will I remember no more. Now where remission of these is, there is no more offering for sin.”

4. It Establishes Jesus as our High Priest and Gives us access to the Throne of God the Father

Having therefore, brethren, boldness to enter into the holiest by the blood of Jesus, By a new and living way, which he hath consecrated for us, through the veil, that is to say, his flesh; And having an high priest over the house of God;” (Hebrews 10:19-20). We now have an audience with the God of Creation.  In the old days, before the covenant man could not approach God, because of the holiness of God.  This would kill a man who was sinful by nature to be in the presence of God, who was holy by nature.  In the blood covering of the New Covenant, provided by the sacrifice of Jesus, we can now come before God without fear of death.  As Paul described we can now come “boldly” into the holiest, because we are sanctified in the blood of Jesus.  The veil mentioned here is the flesh that was broken.  This is the bread we eat, this is a reminder of the death of Jesus who provides a way to us to know God the Father in a personal manner.

This is not the all and all of the New Covenant but it is enough to establish the importance of remembering what Jesus had done for us in the sacrifice in the breaking of his body, and the shedding of his blood.  It is enough for us to understand why we are called by Jesus himself to remember the establishment of the New Covenant in observing the Lord’s Supper.

THE OBSERVANCE OF THE SUPPER

  1. TO BE DONE WITH REVERENCE…
  2. That is, “in a worthy manner” – 1Cor 11:27,29 – Wherefore whosoever shall eat this bread, and drink this cup of the Lord, unworthily, shall be guilty of the body and blood of the Lord. But let a man examine himself, and so let him eat of that bread, and drink of that cup. For he that eateth and drinketh unworthily, eateth and drinketh damnation to himself, not discerning the Lord’s body. “Worthily” is an adverb, describing how we take it, not whether we     are worthy (none are truly worthy), but through Jesus we are worthy. So are we taking it in a manner that it is worthy of being taken, are we doing it with reverence, humbleness, and in honor of Jesus Christ who cleanses us?  Failure to do so brings condemnation (scrutiny by God)  to  us. Chastisement from the Lord for not being sincere.

While the observance of the Lord’s Supper is a personal and intimate time with the Lord, we are to observe it in fellowship with other Christians.

  1. TO BE DONE WITH OTHER CHRISTIANS…
  2. The celebration of the Lord’s Supper is designed to be a communal meal
  • The disciples “came together” to break bread – Acts 20:7
  • When they came together, they were to “wait for one another” – 1Co 11:33
  • Partaking together of “one bread”, they demonstrate they are “one bread and one body”
    • 1Cor 10:17

The Lords Supper is a special meal to be separate from any other meals or celebrations.   When observed it should take prominence in the worship service.

CONCLUSION

Christians today should never lose sight of its significance for us…

  • It is a time to remember the cost of the New Covenant (Blood was shed)
  • A constant reminder of the great sacrifice Jesus paid for our sins
  • A communion or sharing of the body and blood of the Lord
  • A time for self-examination and rededication of our service to the Lord
  • A means for building fellowship with one another in the body of Christ

May we always find proper reverence in our hearts in observing the Lord’s Supper, reflecting on the changes that the Lord has brought to our lives; freedom from sin, guilt, and the anguish of sin.  Redeemed to a new life, of fellowship with others and with the Creator of the Universe Himself through the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus Christ.  Oh what a debt of love we owe to the one who has redeemed us to God!

Wolves Among You – Beware

Ethan-Vanderbuilt-A-Wolf-in-Sheeps-Clothing

Take heed therefore unto yourselves, and to all the flock, over the which the Holy Ghost hath made you overseers, to feed the church of God, which he hath purchased with his own blood. For I know this, that after my departing shall grievous wolves enter in among you, not sparing the flock. Also of your own selves shall men arise, speaking perverse things, to draw away disciples after them. (Acts 20:28-30)

The other day I read an article that was written by a young man. In this article the young man said that he was a profession Christian. He also went on to talk about how he, at moments in times past, had very passionate evangelistic experiences, where he went and testified to people about Jesus, and tried earnestly to win souls to Christ.

Then he went into error; the young man put forth the argument that Jesus is not the only way to God. He explained that since God created everything, then by virtue of God’s omniscience, he also created the other religions of the world. This faulty reasoning had led him to believe that God had given us numerous ways to approach him in the various religions of the world. “After all don’t all religions end up in the same place?” I want to make sure that everyone knows; that this young man’s doctrine is a false doctrine. I will concur that all religion does led to the same place.  They all lead to hell.  Religion does not save a single soul. Only believe in Jesus as the Son of God, who sacrificed himself for our sin, and acceptance of this truth in faith; that he died, was buried, rose again, and will return to establish his kingdom, and this is the only way to the Father will save anyone.

Please pray for this young man, because; the deceptive lies and half-truths that he speaks shows that he is not saved, because he actually does not believe and have his faith in Jesus Christ alone. In John 8:44 it reads, “ye are of your father the devil, and the lust of your father ye will do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and abode not in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaketh a lie, he speaketh of his own: for he is a liar, and the father of it.”

So then if you do the will of your father and you show signs of lies, deceipt, rebellion against the will of God, trying to make your own way to God then you are your father the devil.  What then in the will of God the Father? Jesus puts this all into very simple terms, “And this is the will of him (the Father) that sent me, that every one which seeth the Son (Jesus), and believeth on him, may have everlasting life:  and I will raise him up at the last day.” (John 6.40).  Acceptance of Jesus as the only way to the Father shows you to be in the will of God, and a child of your heavenly Father.  This is the way to life eternal with God.

In the 13th chapter of the Gospel of Matthew Jesus explains that the devil intentionally places it agents in the midst of the church. “He answered and said unto them, he that soweth the good seed is the Son of man; the field is the world; the good seed are the children of the kingdom; but the tares are of the children of the wicked one; the enemy that sowed them is the devil; the harvest is the end of the world; and the reapers are the angels. As therefore the tears are gathered and burned in the fire; so shall it be in the end of this world.” This verse along with Matthew 7:21 tells us that not everyone who says Lord, Lord, shall not enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that do at the will of my father which is in heaven.  Instead the devil puts in tares among the wheat, that is he puts in false believers among the believers.  These false believers sow in false doctrines in an attempt to confuse and weaken the faith of the true beleivers.

This false concept of having more than one way to God, or more than one God, is nothing new. In Isaiah 14:13 – 15, which is believed to have been written between 740-680 B.C., it reveals the intent of Satan to exalt himself above the throne of God.

“For thou hast said in thine heart, I will ascend into heaven, I will exalt my throne above the stars of God:  I will sit also upon the mount of the congregation, in the sides of the north:  I will ascend above the heights of the clouds; I will be like the Most High. Yet thou shalt be brought down to hell, to the sides of the pit.”(Isaiah 14:13-15)

The worship of other gods has never been accepted by the one true God. Exodus 20:3 – 5 states, “thou shalt have no other gods before me. Thou shalt not make unto the any graven image, or any likeness of anything that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth: thou shalt not bow down thyself to them, nor serve them: for I the Lord thy God am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children unto the third and fourth generation of them that hate me;” this is a very serious offense that the Lord warns us not to commit. By way of example, you can open your Bible to 2 Kings and see the story of Moab in the first chapter. In this story Ahaziah tried to consult one of the profits of Baal-zebub, who was the god of Ekron, and the Lord slayed him because he sought another god.

Now let’s take a look at what the Lord says in the book of Isaiah. “Ye are my witnesses, saith the Lord, and my servant whom I have chosen: that you may know and believe me, and understand that I am he: if you’re me there is no God formed, neither shall there be after me. I, even I, and the Lord; and beside me there is no savior.” (Isaiah 43:10 – 11). As you can see the Lord is very clear on this point, there is only one God, and the Lord is that God. There is no other way to salvation, but through him. Jesus himself said, “I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.” (John 14:6). The book of the Gospel of John testifies, “in the beginning was the Word, and the word was with God, and the Word was God. The same was in the beginning with God. All things were made by him; and without him was not anything made that was made. In him was the life; and the life was light of men.” (John 1:1 – 4).

The consequence of believing that Jesus is just another god, or that there are many ways to God other than Jesus, is evidence of lack of faith in Jesus as your Lord and Savior. With this profession, you condemn yourself. “I said therefore unto you that she shall die in your sins: for if you believe not that I am he, you shall die in your sins.” (John 8:24). So I warn you now, if you hear anyone putting out any other gospel other than salvation through Jesus Christ alone than that is a false teacher that is going to lead many people to death. You do not need to listen to them because all they will do is try to confuse you.

I will close with this Scripture from Galatians 1:6 – 10, “I marvel that ye are so soon removed from him that called you into the grace of Christ unto another gospel: which is another; but there be some that trouble you, and would pervert the gospel of Christ. But though we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel unto you that which we have preached unto you, let him be accursed. As we said before, say so I now again, if any man preach any other gospel unto you than that ye have received, let him be accursed. For do I now persuade men, or God? Or do I seek to please men? For if I yet please men, I should not be the servant of Christ.”

If anyone declares any other gospel to you, other than the gospel of Jesus Christ as the only means of salvation, no matter how nice they talk, or how convincing the logical argument might seem, they are in error and should be removed from your presence.

 

 

Wolf Image from Ether Vanderbuilt