QUESTIONS/ANSWERS FROM THE QUESTION FORUM
Group Number 90
Did angels intermarry with humans?
There is a position that holds wicked angelic spirits intermingled with the daughters of men producing the race of "giants," or "Nephilim" (NASB/NIV) that are mentioned in Genesis 6:4.
The word translated "giants" and "Nephilim means bully or tyrant, and not necessarily a sort of superhuman being, as the holders of the above view assume. The word is used one other time in Scripture, in reference to the sons of Anak, who were apparently unusually tall. The spies who sent into Canaan the sons of Anak made them appear as "grasshoppers" (Num 13:33).
\First, the "sons of God" are distinguished from the "Nephilim," who were wicked men of great influence. The actions attributed to these "sons of God" are said to have taken place "AFTER" the rise of the "Nephilim." It appears from the text that some of the offspring of these "Nephilim" were actually the daughters that the "sons of God" -- or godly lineage -- went in to. The offspring of this unholy union followed the pattern of the wicked men before them. That has always proved to be the case when unholy unions take place. The offspring tend to follow the ways of the wicked. This was clearly demonstrated in the children of Israel.
Second, the record of the offspring of the mingling of the "sons of God" with "the daughters of men" does not emphasize their stature, or any supposed superhuman powers. The outcome was moral corruption: "Then the LORD saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every intent of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually" (Gen 6:5, NKJV). This eventually led to the destruction of the flood (Gen 6:6). The reason God adduced for this judgment is not that "the sons of God" married "the daughters of men," but rather it was because "the wickedness OF MEN was great in the earth, and that every intent of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually" (Gen 6:5). It is then stated that the Lord "was sorry that He had made man on the earth, and He was grieved in His heart" (Gen 6:6, NKJV) -- not that He was sorry a new kind of race had been created by the mingling of angelic hosts with humanity.
Third, there is not a single reference to the occasion of Genesis 6:4 by any prophet, John the Baptist, Jesus Christ, or the Apostles. This by no means raises a question about the validity of the passage. Rather, it indicates it was not the introduction of some strange phenomenon, but rather a mingling of the offspring of the godly with the offspring of the ungodly -- something that has always been forbidden by God. The word of Abraham about a wife for Isaac (Gen 24:3-4), and the warnings issued to Israel about intermarrying with the heathen (Ex 34:16; Neh 13:25), as well as to the body of Christ (2 Cor 6:14; 1 Cor 8:39), confirm that the intermingling of the godly with the ungodly is the Divine emphasis -- not the mingling of angels with men. The latter is never clearly stated as either a possibility or an actual occurrence. Men have assumed "sons of God" referred to angels, because of such a use in Job 1:6, 2:1, and 38:7.
In my judgment, "sons of God" refer to those from a lineage that was, to some extent, familiar with God. You are correct in tracing this back to Seth. More specifically, it was during the time of Seth's son Enosh, that men began to "call upon the name of the Lord" (Gen 4:26). I understand that those within the lineage of Enosh intermarried with the "daughters of men," which "daughters," we assume, were ultimately traced back to Cain's lineage.
My friend's Boyfriend is very religious, but she's having a problem with him where he's refusing to work and support the family. She has four children and is barely scraping by. She pays to put a roof over their heads, Food they need, Clothes they need. She's not sure what to do. He's refusing to get any kind of work. Is there some Bible reference or verses that deal with the Man working and supporting his family? Being that he is religious, we are hoping that if we can find these verses and show them to him that maybe he'd be more inclined to help out.
First, a woman has no right to live with her "boyfriend." That is a sin called "fornication," for it is out of wedlock. When it comes to living together, marriage is the only acceptable framework. The Scriptures say, "Marriage is honorable among all." Outside of marriage, however, intimacy is a sin that God Himself will judge. Here is what the Bible says. "Marriage is honorable among all, and the bed undefiled; but fornicators and adulterers God will judge: (Hebrews 13:4).
If a couple is married, it is the business of the husband to "provide for his own, and especially those of his household." If the husband refuses to do this, "he has denied thefaith and is worse than an unbeliever" (1 Timothy 5:8). God even says if a man does not work, he cannot be allowed to eat. "For even when we were with you, we commanded you this: If anyone will not work, neither shall he eat" (2 Thessalonians 3:10).
However, this rule does not apply to your friend's situation if she is not married to this man. If they are not married, there are two choices that are before her. Either marry the man, or put him out of the house. From the report you give of the man, he would not be a suitable husband. Also, he may say he is a religious man, but if he is living out of wedlock, he has lied about that. His religion is vain or pointless, because he is doing something the Lord has condemned.
However this man and woman prefer to resolve the matter is up to them and God. But they cannot continue to live together as they are now. To do so is to violate and word and will of God, and nothing good can come from that.
We know from passages like 1 Jn. 3:10 that there are no spiritual orphans. One is either a child of God or living in darkness, a child of the evil one.
We know from Ac 18:13-17, that non-believers who attempted to invoke the name of Jesus to cast out demons were disastrously unsuccessful.
We know from Mt. 12:22-26 that it makes no sense for the power of Satan to cast out demons, for his kingdom would be divided against itself and not stand.
What, then, am I to make of Mt. 7:22-23? These people apparently successfully cast out demons in Jesus' name (contra the sons of Sceva above).
Clearly they weren't of the same category as Sceva's boys.
Were they genuine believers at the time of their successful exorcisms? Yet Jesus says he _never_ knew them. Suggesting they were never a part of his genuine family.
If they were never of Jesus, then they were of the evil one and Satan was casting out Satan contra Mt. 12.
It appears that this passage creates some tension with these other passages, or I'm missing something obvious.
Anyone have any insight into this who is willing to render me aid and untie the knot I made for myself?
It is the manner of the Lord to deal with people upon the basis of their profession. This is seen in the parable of the pounds, where the master was charged with being "an austere man, reapinjg where he did not sow." The Lord said the master declared, "Out of your own mouth I will judge you" (Lk 19:21-22). It was not that he was actually "austere." Rather, the wicked servant had lived in contradiction of what he himself had said. Had he really considered the master one who reaped where he did not sow, he would have been the more diligent to handle his master's goods wisely.
This same principle was bound by the Lord Jesus upon those who cried out, "His blood be on us, and on our children" (Matt 27:25). They had pronounced their own judgment.
The point of Matthew 7:22-23 is not whether or not they had done "many wonderful works." Rather, it was that they said they had done them "in Your name." By making that statement, they were themselves submitting to His assessment. Jesus makes clear that their works were not "wonderful" at all. He calls them "iniquity." Yet, because they said they had done them in His name, their works became even more wicked. They were "iniquity" because they were not done in faith, or out of commitment to the Lord. We know this is the case, because God is "not unrighteous" to forget works springing from proper motives (Heb 6:10).
This principle is what made the sin of those who delivered Jesus to Pilate of greater magnitude than the sin of Pilate himself. It was done, they said, as an expression of allegiance to God (Matthew 19:11).
The thing is, I can't see these folks saying this unless they had, in their own minds at least, been involved in some pretty amazing things. I have difficulty believing they were "imagining" that they had prophesied. And if they only "thought" they had cast out demons, and only "thought" they had done works of power, then it would also follow that they only "thought" they had prophesied.
Do not overlook the power of delusion. One of the essential aspects of delusion is that the people who are deluded do not know that is the case. Too, there are very real supernatural things that are wrought by the devil: i.e., fire falling from heaven and consuming Job's sheep (Job 1:16), a great wind smiting the four corners of the house where Job's children were eating and drinking (Job 1:18), and smiting job with very real boils from the sole of his foot to the crown of his head (Job 1:7). Then there is the inspired testimony of Moses: the Egyptian magicians turning water into blood with their enchantments (Ex 7:22), and bringing frogs out of the water upon the land of Egypt (Ex 8:7). However, they could not bring lice upon the land as Moses did (Ex 8:18).
There is also the prophecy of the woman with the Spirit of divination: "This girl followed Paul and us, and cried out, saying, "These men are the servants of the Most High God, who proclaim to us the way of salvation" (Acts 16:17). It is not possible for that to be more grammatically or technically accurate. However, the spirit that moved the poor woman to so speak was cast out by Paul (Acts 16:17-18). That was not the medium through which the Lord brings good news. There were also demons who spoke out of the mouths of those whom they possessed: "You are the Christ, the Son of God." Jesus refused to let them speak. They were the wrong spokesmen (Luke 4 4:41). Jesus spoke of delusions that were so strong that, if it was possible, they would "deceive the very elect" (Matt 24:24). Paul spoke of a deceiver who worked "according to all power, signs, and lying wonders" (2 Thess 2:9). John was shown an animated version of this delusion: "spirits of demons performing miraculous signs" (Rev 16:14).
Delusion and "lying wonders" does not mean the things involved are not supernatural. It is not a suggestion that such things are merely wrought by the sleight of hand. Rather, it means they are not from God -- i.e., they are not manifestations of gracious Divine intervention, and they do not result in glory being brought to God.
The text in Matthew 7:22-23 does not concern whether or not the people really did something. The point is not the establishment of fraud and trickery, but the futility of any endeavor that does not proceed from intimacy with Jesus: "i.e., "I never knew you." Our Lord was expounding the fact that an evil tree cannot produce good fruit -- that is, fruit that will "remain" (John 15:16). Lay our Lord's sayings along side many of the professed Christian works of our day, including mega-churches, professed ministries, etc.
We have not been called to assess whether or not men really do what they profess. Nor, indeed, is it our business to decipher whether or not they are convinced what they do it true. Rather, we are to discern whether such representations are really from God -- things designed to illuminate, save, and keep. The seriousness of our endeavors is seen in a word relating to those who refuse to receive the love of the truth. "And for this reason God will send them strong delusion, that they should believe the lie, that they all may be condemned who did not believe the truth but had pleasure in unrighteousness. (2 Thess 2:11-12).
You will never arrive at a satisfactory academic understanding of the text you are pondering. You must look at it in a different manner.
"As children of Satan (Mat 13:38; John 8:44; Acts 13:10; 1John 3:10) who had never been known by Christ, they could not have cast out demons because Satan does not cast out Satan."
This is quite true. However, they could have feigned casting them out, Satan conspiring in the deception, in a manner not distinguishable by mere observation. I understand this to be involved in "strong delusion." Also, as noted below, they could have actually cast them out at a time when they were not in their latter condition.
Jesus plainly called them "FALSE prophets".(Mat 7:15), so they certainly were not prophesying from Him. Since they were false prophets who had not cast out demons it appears that either they were trying to lie to Jesus or they were deceived about what they had done.
There is no question about the majority of modern day false prophets we face being outright liars and frauds. As I understand it, that has been the case throughout history. An example is the prophet that lied about seeing an angel who directed him by the word of the Lord (1 Kgs 13:18-21).
There are exceptions, however, when something that was prophesied DOES come to pass, yet was not from God. Moses spoke of this: "If there arises among you a prophet or a dreamer of dreams, and he gives you a sign or a wonder, AND THE SIGN OR WONDER COMES TO PASS, of which he spoke to you, saying, 'Let us go after other gods'; which you have not known; 'and let us serve them,' you shall not listen to the words of that prophet or that dreamer of dreams, for the LORD your God is testing you to know whether you love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul" (Deut 13:1-3).
The only haven of safety in such matters is the Lord Himself -- i.e., abiding in Him. John spoke of those who were false prophets, yet companied among some of the Apostles themselves. It was most difficult to distinguish them. However, he wrote of "the anointing" -- which I understand to be the Holy Spirit, given to those who are baptized into Christ -- so teaching them as to enable to abide in Christ, not being deceived by those false prophets (1 John 2:20-27).
I do not agree that whether or not those referenced in Matthew 7:22-23 really did what they professed is the issue. I suppose that one might assume when Judas was sent out with the twelve, he did not "heal the sick, cleanse the lepers, raise the dead, and cast out devils" (Matt 10:5-8). Was he excluded when Jesus gave the twelve "power over unclean spirits, to cast them out, and heal all manner of sickness and all manner of disease" (Matt 10:1)? I do not believe such a postulate can be supported -- even though Judas was "a devil" (diabolos -- John 6:70) and "a thief" (John 12:6). Jesus did not say he would be a devil, but that he was one. Couldn't Judas be one of those mentioned in Matthew 7:22-23? If so, did he really cast out demons?
This matter is not as simplistic as some suppose.
What role did Rebekah play in the bible in Genesis chapter 24?
Rebekah was not role-playing. She was courteous, helpful, and willing -- confirming that she was the one God had chosen for Isaac. Her conduct was an to the request made by Abraham's servant Eliezer. That is plainly stated in the text.
What role did Miriam play in Exodus chapter 15 and what happened to her.?
Miriam was a prophetess (15:20), and led the women in the singing of praise to God following Israel's deliverance through the Red Sea and from the Egyptian army. She died en route to the promised land, at Kadesh, and was buried there (Num 20:1).
Who was with Ruth and what did they do and why.
Ruth was a Moabitess (Ruth 1:22), a member of a people who had been cursed by God (Deut 23:3). She married one of the sons of Naomi, a Jewish lady who was widowed while here family was in Moab during a grievous famine. Ruth's husband also died, together with the husband of her sister Orphah -- their husbands were the sons of Naomi (Mahlon and Chilion). Ruth chose to go with Naomi back to the land of Israel, choosing to abandon the gods of the Moabites, and serve the true God (Ruth 1:16). She married Boaz, a kinsman of her former husband, and gave birth to Obed, who was the grandfather of king David (Ruth 4:17). She is one of the four women mentioned in the lineage of Jesus (Matt 1:5).
Who was Deborah and where was she when it happened in Judges chapter 4 what was her husband name?
Deborah was a prophetess, whose husband was Lapidoth. She was the fourth Judge of Israel. At the time of Judges four, she was in mount Ephraim, as the chapter clearly says (Judges 4:4).
Who was Abigail in 1st Samuel chapter 25
Abigal was the wife of Nabal, who was an evil man of the household of Caleb. She is noted for her wisdom in powerfully pleading for her husband's life, and all who were connected with him, before king David, as the chapter clearly states. Following that, the Lord Himself took Nabal's life for the sins he had committed against David.
Where did Esther family have to be moved from and to. Who raised her and what was her title and what was the risk she took.
Esther was a Jewish orphan, raised by her uncle Mordecai, who was carried away from Jerusalem in the Babylonian captivity (Esth 2:5-6). She lived during the aftermath of the Babylonian Captivity, when the Persians ruled the world. Her Jewish name was Hadassah (Esth 2:7). SHe is called "the queen" (Esth 4:4). By the providence of God, she came into favor with the Persian king Ahasuerus, who is generally understood to have been the famous king Xerxes. Through a process of unusual events, she eventually interceded for the Jewish people, whom Haman, a leading man in the kingdom, had conspired to have killed. She risked her life in doing so, because anyone coming before the king uninvited could be killed if the king was displeased. The whole event is recorded in Esther chapters 2-6.
Where did the Samaritan lady meet Jesus and what did Jesus ask her and what was the reply? Why did she tell the people to come and see Jesus. What was she?
The Samaritan women came into contact with Jesus at Jacob's well in Samaria, where he asked her for a drink of water. She was taken back by the Lord's request, for the Jews did not have dealings with the Samaritans. Her background, and why the people came to see Jesus is recorded in the fourth chapter of John.
How many spirits was Mary Magdlean she posses with? Why didn't Simon like her?
Jesus cast seven demons our of Mary Magdalene, as recorded in Mark 16:9 and Luke 8:2. She was the first one to whom the resurrected Christ appeared (Mark 16:9). There is nothing that suggests this was the woman who stood behind Jesus, washing His feet with tears, wiping them with her hair, kissing His feet, and anointing them with ointment (Luke 7:37). Simon objected to what she had done because, he said, "she is a sinner" -- a woman of ill fame (Luke 7:39). However, the Scriptures do not say this was Mary Magalene.
What did John warn the elect lady about and what statement did he tell her not to do? in 2nd John 1:5
I assume you have read the text. If you have not, John told her not to receive into her house anyone who came bearing a doctrine that did not properly represent Christ (2 John 1:10). He told her in verse five of the commandment to "love one another."
Who was John the baptist ken to?
John the Baptist was a cousin of Jesus -- the son of Elizabeth, who was a cousin to the mother of Jesus, Mary (Luke 1:36).
Why was satan kicked out the heaven?
Initially, because he exalted himself against God (Isa 14:12-15; Ezek 28:13-18). His complete banishment from the presence of God is related to the coming of Christ and His great salvation (Luke 10:18; Rev 12:8-10).
Who recieved double portion of their leaders spirit?
Elisha (2 Kings 2:9).
From time to time through the years I have heard good brothers suggest that there are no true Jews still living. I am interested in your thoughts on this.
As this brother knows, there are two approaches to this subject in Scripture. One is from the inward point of view, and one from the outward. Inwardly, a Jew is whose heart has been circumcised, and who has a new spirit -- as some have already affirmed (Rom 2:29). However, there are frequent references to the Jews from the outward point of view as well -- the fleshly lineage of Abraham.
1. The Gospel is God's power unto salvation to "the Jew first" (Rom 1:16). That is certainly not from the inward point of view.
2. The inward view is not the basis of both cursing and blessing that is proclaimed in Romans 2:9-10: "to the Jew first, and also of the Gentile."
3. The use of "Jew" in Romans 3:1-3 is not from the inward perspective.
4. Paul's question in Romans 3:29 is not from the inward perspective: "Is He God of the Jews only?"
5. The outward view is seen in Romans 9:24, where those in Christ are said to have been "called" from both Jews and Gentiles.
6. The outward view is also the focus of Romans 10:12, where the Lord is said to be rich unto all who call upon Him, both Jew and Greek.
7. In his exposition of the differing responses of people to the Gospel, and the effectiveness of Christ, Paul speaks of Jews and Greeks (1 Cor 1:22-24).
8. When Paul spoke of becoming a Jew in order to gain the Jews, he was speaking of the outward distinction (1 Cor 9:20).
9. The outward distinction of Jew was intended when Paul said not to give offense to "the Jews, the Gentiles, or the church of God" (1 Cor 10:32).
10. All who are in Christ were baptized by one Spirit into one body, whether Jew or Gentile. This to is from the outward point of view (1 Cor 12:13).
11. Paul spoke of the "Jew's religion" (Gal 1:13-14). This is also from the outward view.
In Christ, there is no Jew or Gentile (Gal 3:28; Col 3:11). However, that is the only place such distinctions do not exist among those living in this world. Out of Christ, the distinctions still exists.
Paul addresses the matter of Abraham's fleshly offspring in the tenth and eleventh chapters of Romans. His heart's desire for them was that they might be saved (Rom 10:1). Elsewhere he referred to them as his "kinsmen according to the flesh" (Rom 9:3) -- those who were Jews outwardly. At the time he said this, the ten tribes of Israel had long been in obscurity, never having recovered from being overcome by the Assyrians. The vast majority of Jews, according to the flesh, were in a state of dispersion, just as they are today. Yet, amidst that dispersed, and difficult to identify, mass of people, Paul affirmed there was a remnant that would ultimately be saved (Rom 9:27-29; 11:5). He argues that the Jews had not fallen beyond the point of recovery (Rom 11:11), and that their recovery would bring greater riches than their fall (Rom 11:12,15). He categorically states that "blindness in part" has happened unto the Jews until the full number of the Gentiles is come in (Rom 11:25). He also affirms God still has a covenant with them to take away their sins (Rom 11:27), declaring there are some among them who will obtain mercy through the mercy given to the Gentiles (Rom 11:31).
All of this, along with a remarkably large number of promises regarding the eventually recovery of the Jews, would be meaningless if there were ever, subsequent to Abraham, a period of time in this world when, in the sense of these promises, there really were no Jews.
After declaring the promised New Covenant Jer 31:31-34), which covenant Jesus is presently mediating (Heb 8:6-13), the Lord made this statement concerning the fleshly offspring of Abraham. "Thus saith the LORD, which giveth the sun for a light by day, and the ordinances of the moon and of the stars for a light by night, which divideth the sea when the waves thereof roar; The LORD of hosts is his name: if those ordinances depart from before me, saith the LORD, then the seed of Israel also shall cease from being a nation before me for ever. Thus saith the LORD; If heaven above can be measured, and the foundations of the earth searched out beneath, I will also cast off all the seed of Israel for all that they have done, saith the LORD" (Jer 31:35-37).
As long as the sun, moon, and stars exist, there are "Jews" in this world -- a people among whom will be found a remnant who will be saved through their belief of the Gospel. Until a man can be found that can measure the heaven and find out the foundations of the earth, God will not allow the obliteration of this people.
In the vision granted to John, he was given to see the sealing of a great number of people from "the tribes of Israel" (Rev 7:4-8). Also, the names of "the twelve tribes of Israel" are written on the gates of the "New Jerusalem," which is said to be "the Bride, the Lamb's wife" (Rev 21:9-12). Although there are some things "hard to be understood" in these references, it seems to me they become even more difficult if we postulate a time in this world when such a people are really not present. Also, I know of no place where the church itself is referred to the "tribes of Israel" -- particularly "the twelve tribes of Israel."
There are "true Jews," in the outward sense, that remain in this world. There are also, praise God, "true Jews" inwardly that remain -- that is, a people who are circumcised in their heart and spirit.
I am someone who undergoing difficult financial circumstances due to the fact that I have implicated myself in debts.inspite the fact that Iam someone who works very hard holding two jobs.I do always have backdues.I try to minimize my expenditure,but it doesn`t help? Things are getting from bad to worse and I feel like I am curse.I have reach to an extent of not knowing what to do.Anyone with suggestions?
You must seek wisdom and strength from the Lord to use the world to your ETERNAL advantage, not allowing it to use you. The Scripture says it this way, "those who use the things of the world, as if not engrossed in them. For this world in its present form is passing away" (1 Cor 7:31). When debts are unnecessarily accumulated, it is because one has a distorted view of this world. He has forgotten that the world is really passing away, together with the desire for the things that are in it (1 John 2:17). At all costm, you must avoid this happening to you.
There is a certain snare that goes along with a desire for riches and possessions. I do not know that you have a driving desire to be "rich" in the American sense of the word. In the Scriptural sense of the word, "rich" means having more than what is adequate. Having an abundance of things is not wrong of itself. Abraham and Job were rich (Gen 13:2; Job 1:3) -- but very few among God's people have realized such a condition. The reason is that possessions have a way of dominating men, causing them to forget that anything tangible is only temporal.
Speaking of an inordinate desire for wealth and possessions, the Spirit says: "People who want to get rich fall into temptation and a trap and into many foolish and harmful desires that plunge men into ruin and destruction. For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil. Some people, eager for money, have wandered from the faith and pierced themselves with many griefs. But you, man of God, flee from all this, and pursue righteousness, godliness, faith, love, endurance and gentleness" (1 Tim 6:9-11).
How can I lead a successful life free from insecurity, be blessed with abundance? Like I said I am someone who works very hard but problems always haunt me. I do not really enjoy the fruits of my hard work. Whenever I have money problems always arise. What do you think is my problem?
Readjust your priorities. Instead of seeking a successful life, free from insecurity, and being blessed with an abundance, seek first the Kingdom of God and His righteousness. This is what Jesus tells you to do: "But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well" (Matt 6:33). Make your main aim to arrive safely in heaven, with the Lord saying to you, "Well done, good and faithful servant." When you do this, the Lord will see to it that you have as much as you can handle.
Make your life's quest the same as that of Paul. He tells us this is the way for all of us to think. This will make your life a satisfying one. Also, the Lord will then help you to resolve the difficulties you are experiencing. "But whatever was to my profit I now consider loss for the sake of Christ. What is more, I consider everything a loss compared to the surpassing greatness of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord, for whose sake I have lost all things. I consider them rubbish, that I may gain Christ and be found in him, not having a righteousness of my own that comes from the law, but that which is through faith in Christ--the righteousness that comes from God and is by faith. I want to know Christ and the power of his resurrection and the fellowship of sharing in his sufferings, becoming like him in his death, and so, somehow, to attain to the resurrection from the dead. Not that I have already obtained all this, or have already been made perfect, but I press on to take hold of that for which Christ Jesus took hold of me. Brothers, I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus. (Phil 3:7-14).
I am Born again and Filled with the Holy Spirit. How do I become a true son of God? I feel rejected from my earthly parents and I tend to take that rejection in my spiritual relationship with God. I want reconciliation my family but how?
If you are really born again and are filled with the Spirit, you ARE a child of God. Being born again is what makes you a son of God (John 1:12-13).
The fact that you are rejected by your earthly parents has nothing whatsoever to do with your relationship with God. In fact, Jesus told us that when we follow Him, it is possible for our own families to reject us. Here are His words: "Do not suppose that I have come to bring peace to the earth. I did not come to bring peace, but a sword. For I have come to turn "'a man against his father, a daughter against her mother, a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law -- a man's enemies will be the members of his own household. Anyone who loves his father or mother more than me is not worthy of me; anyone who loves his son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me" (Mat 10:34-37).
I do not know what has caused the friction between you and your family. If you must choose between them and the Lord, then you must choose the Lord and let them go. If there is a way for you to be reconciled to them, it can only happen if you are close to God. It is possible that your relation to God will cost you their friendship.
Make it your aim to be pleasing to the Lord. Seek Him fervently and consistently through reading the Scriptures, praying, maintaining fellowship with strong believers, and living your life for Him. When those things are happening, God will help you to do whatever is possible.
What makes us to have little faith?
"Little faith" is a condition that results from not trusting the Lord with all of our heart (Prov 3:5-6). When the condition occurs, it is not something you should try and understand. Rather, you must go to the Lord like a father who confronted Jesus. He had faith, but he sensed it was not enough. He said to Jesus, "Lord, I believe; help thou mine unbelief" (Mark 9:24). He will help those who come to him like this.
Why is it that you keep on asking the same things to God?
Because this is a way God has of testing our faith. The thought that we can ask God for something one time, and will always receive what we seek is not right. in fact, it is seriously wrong. Jesus taught on this subject. Here is what He said. "And he spake a parable unto them to this end, that men ought always to pray, and not to faint (give up); Saying, There was in a city a judge, which feared not God, neither regarded man: And there was a widow in that city; and she came unto him, saying, Avenge me of mine adversary. And he would not for a while: but afterward he said within himself, Though I fear not God, nor regard man; Yet because this widow troubleth me, I will avenge her, lest by her continual coming she weary me. And the Lord said, Hear what the unjust judge saith. And shall not God avenge his own elect, which cry day and night unto him, though he bear long with them? I tell you that he will avenge them speedily. Nevertheless when the Son of man cometh, shall he find faith on the earth? (Luke 18:1-8).
Why does some sickness symptoms takes long to disappear?
The symptoms go away when the person is healed, and not before. The teaching that people are healed even though they still have the symptoms is not true. That is like saying people Jesus healed still looked like they were sick, even though they were really healed. The whole idea is a foolish and dishonest one.
On time, when Jesus healed a blind man, He had to take the man out of the town where he was living, because there was so much unbelief in the town. He touched the man and asked him what he say. The man said, "I see men as trees walking." Jesus did not tell the man he was healed, and to on his way. The Scripture says, "After that he put his hands again upon his eyes, and made him look up: and he was restored, and saw every man clearly" (Mark 8:25). The man was not healed until "he was restored." It was not that symptoms remained. The blindness itself was remaining.
What are your views on this new movie, The Passion of the Christ? What would the percentage of people that would run to church after this viewing this movie in your humble opinion?
The movie, together with the various dialogs that it has prompted, are refreshing to me for several reasons. Here is a man with a sordid past, Mel Gibson. Suddenly, he is faced with his need for a change. With adequate financial means at his disposal, he determines to send a message concerning Jesus to the world. What is it that he wants the world to know? What message does he want to get across? For some, the essential message is that Jesus can solve your problems. For others, it is that Jesus offers health and wealth. For still others, it is a focus upon the family, a successful church, or even the winning of souls. Mel Gibson chose to portray the death of Christ -- to make it as vivid a portrayal as he could. When he was confronted by skeptics who said historical records conflicted with the film, he said the Gospels were precisely correct, and gave all of the information we needed. It would have been nice if the professed church with all of its educational institutions had been saying that also.
While there may be numerous things that Christian analyzers would like to have had included in the film, the fact that it presents "Christ crucified" cannot be wrong. There are at least 34 pointed references to Christ's death in the Epistles, together with countless allusions to and, expositions of, it. An emphasis on Christ's death cannot be wrong.
I think God has raised up a man to shine the spotlight on something the professed church has neglected. For me, whether or not people "run to church" is not even the question. The need for this film has resulted from the nominal church's failure to convey to men the awful price that was paid for their redemption. The fruit of the film will be good if men run to the Lord, seeking His forgiveness and mending their ways.
I take my stand with anyone who is determined to present the death of Christ. If anything is lacking in that presentation, it is our business to build upon the foundation of preaching the cross.
What happens when we die. Do we go to heaven?, or do we wait for Jesus return?
When those in Christ are "absent from the body," they are "present with the Lord" (2 Cor 5:8). This is involved in Jesus' statement, "And whosoever liveth and believeth in me shall never die. Believest thou this?" (John 11:26). Those who have embraced the soul-sleeping heresy say the spirit remains asleep with the body. But God never says this.
In the resurrection of the dead, we will be clothed with a new body -- one that will be fully compatible with our redeemed spirit. At that time --when Jesus comes to raise the dead -- the Scriptures affirm, "even so them also which sleep in Jesus will God bring with Him" (1 Thess 4:14). The body is what is asleep, and the spirits are what is "present with the Lord." Jesus will bring those spirits with Him, and they will then be clothed with immortality, as taught in 1 Cor 15:51-54).
My wife ( along with most of the people where she goes to church ) believe that there are steps to salvation. I believe that what they call steps are things which we do because we believe like baptism etc. I believe what Paul told the jailer when he asked and Paul said BELIEVE and that is what is necessary for salvation. Who is right?
You are both right. When Paul said "Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ and thou shalt be saved," the man had not yet heard the Gospel -- which is also essential to being saved (Rom 10:14). The very next word affirms that Paul "spake unto him the word of the Lord, and to all that were in the house" (Acts 16:32). Following that he was baptized (Acts 16:33). It was the man's faith that moved him to be baptized.
The Scriptures nowhere represent being saved as fulfilled in a series of steps. I am very familiar with that approach, but it did not come from God. The "steps" that are cited are assembled by men from various texts of Scripture, but they cannot all be found in a single text.
Using the "step" concept, in Acts 16:31 Paul gave one "step" and one result -- believe, and be shall be saved. In Acts 2:38 Peter gave two "steps" and two results -- "repent and be baptized," and "the remission of sins and the gift of the Holy Spirit." In Acts 3:19 Peter gave two "steps" and two results: "repent and be converted," and sins blotted out and times of refreshing. In Acts 22:16, Ananias gave two steps: "arise and be baptized" and "calling upon the name of the Lord." To the Romans, Paul gave one step: "Whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved" (Rom 10:13). In Romans, he also gave two steps: confessing the Lord Jesus, and believing in our hearts that God raised him from the dead (Rom 10:9). Jesus Himself gave two steps: "believing and being baptized" (Mark 16:16). He also gave a one stepper: "Except ye repent, ye shall all likewise perish" (Luke 13:3,5). Paul spoke of the Thessalonians in terms of four steps: turning to God, turning from idols, serving the living and true God, and waiting His Son from heaven (1 Thess 1:9-10). Peter also referred to one step in 1 Peter 3:21: "Baptism doth now also save us . . . by the resurrection of Jesus Christ."
It should be obvious that none of the things mentioned can be omitted. Who would want to do such a thing? The various answers that were given took people where they were and led them on to Jesus. Furthermore, they were all evidences of faith. When a person hesitates to do any of the things mentioned above, it is because they have not believed. If they say they believe, yet refuse to do what the King says, they have not told the truth. They do not believe.
Faith expresses itself in obedience. It simply is not possible to believe, yet not obey. That is why Paul could say "Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved."
Whatever a person may think about baptism, there is not a single word against it in all of Scripture. It is never represented as an option, but always something that is common to all who are in Christ Jesus. It is only associated with salvation and being in Christ -- nothing else. It is connected with being dead to sin and alive to God (Rom 6), with being buried into Christ's death, dying with Jesus, and being raised by the glory of the Father (Rom 6:4). It is also connected with being circumcised by Jesus (Col 2:11-12). People that teach the "steps" rarely speak of baptism in this manner. We have been liberated by Jesus to speak of salvation precisely as the Spirit does, without any reservations.
God said that no man on the earth was more humble than his servant Moses. What kind of man do you suppose Moses was and what did God mean by refering to Moses in this way. It sounds like God meant it as a good thing.
The word "humble" means a person dores not think of himself more highly that he ought. He sees himself as subject to God, and is not willing to draw attention to himself. Moses was that kind of man, "a very humble man, more humble than anyone else on the face of the earth" (Num 12:3). Moses did not seek to promote himself. He did not live his life to please himself. His whole life was devoted to the Lord. When he spoke, he spoke God's word. When he led the people, he led them where God said to go. When the people stood against him, and complained about what he said and did, he did not fight against them,. but prayed for them.
Such a man is precious in he sight of the Lord. Here is what God says about humble people.
"He guides the humble in what is right and teaches them his way. (Psa 25:9)
The LORD sustains the humble but casts the wicked to the ground. (Psa 147:6)
For the LORD takes delight in his people; he crowns the humble with salvation. (Psa 149:4)
Has not my hand made all these things, and so they came into being?" declares the LORD. "This is the one I esteem: he who is humble and contrite in spirit, and trembles at my word. (Isa 66:2)
He has brought down rulers from their thrones but has lifted up the humble. (Luke 1:52)
But he gives us more grace. That is why Scripture says: "God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble." (James 4:6)
Humble yourselves before the Lord, and he will lift you up. (James 4:10)
Young men, in the same way be submissive to those who are older. All of you, clothe yourselves with humility toward one another, because, "God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble." (1 Pet 5:5)
In Matt. 11:11-15 was Elijah incarnated as John the Baptist?
John the Baptist was NOT Elijah reincarnated. He was, however, a type of the Elijah of whom disciples inquired. Jesus indicated the person who would come would be like Elijah, but not actually Elijah himself. It would be someone coming in "the spirit and power of Elijah," just as John the Baptist did (Luke 1:17).
When the disciples asked Jesus about the coming of Elijah, as prophesied by Malachi (Mal 4:5-6), Jesus replied in a manner that required spiritual understanding. He first answered, "Elijah DOES come first and restore all things" (Mark 9:12). Matthew reads, "Elijah IS coming and WILL restore all things" (Matt 17:11). Those words were spoken long after John the Baptist has been beheaded (Mark 6:28; Matt 14:8), yet our Lord spoke of someone that was coming, not someone who already had come. He then added a word that has confused many students of Scripture: "but I say to you, that Elijah already came, and THEY DID NOT RECOGNIZE HIM, but did to him whatever they wished. So also the Son of Man is going to suffer at their hands" (Matt 17:12). Mark reads, "But I say to you, that Elijah has indeed come, and they did to him whatever they wished, just as it is written of him" (Mark 9:13).
Jesus reference to John the Baptist did not say He "restored all things." In fact, Jesus said, the people did to him whatever they wished -- referring to his beheading. Although it was actually Herod who had John beheaded, the people raised no objection to it, and therefore they were charged with his murder.
The reason for this reference was that Jesus was actually teaching about his death when the disciples raised the question about Elijah. His point was that John the Baptist was killed by that generation, just as Jesus would be: "So also the Son of Man is going to suffer at their hands" (Matt 17:12).
Nevertheless, John the Baptist did come "in the spirit and power of Elijah," awakening people to repentance and preparing the way of the Lord. Yet, he did not thoroughly fulfill the promise of Malachi "Behold, I am going to send you Elijah the prophet before the coming of the great and terrible day of the LORD. And he will restore the hearts of the fathers to their children, and the hearts of the children to their fathers, lest I come and smite the land with a curse" (Mal 4:6). John the Baptist did not restore the hearts of the fathers and children, nor did he avert the curse of God upon Israel, which came in A.D. 70 according to the word of Jesus (Luke 19:42-44). That judgment confirmed the hearts of the Jewish fathers and children had not been turned by the ministry of John the Baptist. His role was not to change the people, but to "prepare the way" for Christ, as Malachi prophesied in another word (Mal 3:1; Matt 11:10; Mk 1:2-5).
There was a time in John the Baptist's ministry when the people asked him who he was. They asked him, "Are you Elijah?" John the Baptist, who was filled with the Holy Spirit from his mother's womb (Luke 1:15), replied, "I am not." When they asked him, "Are you that Prophet" (prophesied by Moses, who spoke of Jesus Himself--Deut 18:15,18), John answered, "No" (Matt 1:21). John himself, therefore, answers your question.
There was a sense, then, in which John the Baptist was Elijah by type. There was also a sense in which he was not the Elijah Malachi promised. That is how the Lord left it.
I am looking for biblical references on the "inherent goodness" of man.
There is no such reference. To the contrary the Scriptures say, "There is none that doeth good" (Psa 14:1,3; 53:1,3; Rom 3:12), "There is none good but one, that is, God" (Matt 19:17; Mark 10:18; Luke 18:19). and "there is not a just man upon earth, that doeth good" (Eccl 7:20). This could not be true is goodness was inherent in man.
The total lack of goodness in humanity is one of the reasons man must be born again (John 3:7). There is nothing salvageable in fallen man. That is why Paul acknowledged, "I know that in me, that is in my flesh, dwelleth no good thing" (Rom 7:18). The "flesh" is human nature apart from Christ. Man must be made a "new creation" in Christ Jesus (2 Cor 5:17). "Goodness" is part of "the fruit of the Spirit" (Gal 5:22; Eph 5:9), not something inherent in man.
(On the Film "The Passion of Christ," 2004). Even if He is the Son of God, it is not possible to be beaten like that and walk!" And that is all she got out of the film. She not a Bible reader, or Jesus follower, before or after this film. So, may the good Lord has His way in whosoever will in the movie industry!
The Scriptures tell us that Christ's disfigurement and suffering was greater than anyone ever suffered: "Just as there were many who were appalled at him -- his appearance was so disfigured beyond that of any man and his form marred beyond human likeness" (Isa 52:14, NIV). "I offered my back to those who beat me, my cheeks to those who pulled out my beard; I did not hide my face from mocking and spitting" (Isa 50:6, NIV). The 22nd Psalm spells his suffering out also.
Your sister was right -- no ordinary man could have suffered such things. However, Jesus was no ordinary man. If anything, the film understated the suffering. Your sister is too accustomed to Western culture, which has been greatly modified by a Christian heritage. The appalling barbarism that has characterized much of history has not been a prominent part of Americas history. Foxes book of martyrs records the astounding sufferings that were endured by multitudes of God's people. They would nor have balked at the sufferings of Christ.
One other thing, this film was not the product of the movie industry. In fact, that industry if objecting to it.
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