QUESTIONS/ANSWERS FROM THE QUESTION FORUM
Group Number 110
My question is regarding the man who built the city of Jericho does it mean that his sons died when he but the door up and when he finished the walls?
Hiel rebuilt Jericho, which had existed long before his time, He rebuilt the city during the days of king Ahab (1 Kgs 16:33-34), but the original city of Jericho was destroyed by Israel under the leadership Joshua. It was after that destruction that Joshua said: "Cursed be the man before the LORD, that riseth up and buildeth this city Jericho: he shall lay the foundation thereof in his firstborn, and in his youngest son shall he set up the gates of it" (Josh 6:26). In fulfillment of that prophecy, Hiel lost his firstborn son when he laid the foundation, and his youngest son when he set up the gates -- which I gather was the last phase of the building project. It was over five hundred years since Joshua said that word. Hiel should have made it his business to know what was said. It certainly was a costly project.
What scripture would you use to counter their claims since I believe you would agree with me that the Word of God is complete in giving us truth about ourselves, God and the purpose for life? I know what Matthew chapter 6 says about clothing but what other scripture points out the fact that clothing doesn't matter, it is heart condition that is important?
Concerning countering the claims of Mormonism, and confirming the completeness of the Word of God -- The centrality of Jesus Christ is the distinction of what God calls "the Scriptures. The Scriptures, Jesus said, testified of Him (John 5:39). That is, He is the grand Subject of all Scripture -- it ultimately leads to Him, whether it is the Law which pointed out the absolute need for Him, the ceremonial Law, which contained types and shadows of Him, or the specific prophecies that foretold both His nature and His ministry. Also, Revelation 19:20 states that "the testimony of Jesus if the spirit of prophecy." That is, Jesus is to prophecy what the spirit is to the body. Remove Jesus from the Word, and there is no reason for it. There is a sense in which Jesus is WHY the Scriptures were written. He is NOT why the Book of Mormon was written. Also, in Mormonism, Jesus is NOT the ultimate expression of God. According to them, there are additional revelations given after Him, That, of course, is an affirmation that He Himself is not "THE truth" (John 14:6). I would ask a Mormon teacher to briefly summarize the Book of Mormon, giving what he feels to be its accent and purpose. I would also ask him to explain the sense in which Joseph Smith had a greater, more extensive, or more precise revelation than Jesus. If the purported revelation given through Joseph Smith was not inherently greater and more informative that what God gave through Jesus, precisely what is the purpose for his book?
Concerning clothing, I do not know how you would establish that clothing doesn't matter. Clothing was the very first issue that God had with men. God looked at the heart, to be sure, but the fig leaves of Adam and Eve did not pass God's scrutiny. If clothing made no difference, they would have passed. If looking on the heart means God does not regard clothing, their attire would have been acceptable. However, God did not receive what they were wearing. He made them coats that covered their flesh more completely. When He instituted the Law, the priests, who appeared before Him, had to wear special clothing (Ex 28:2). When Israel first confronted God, they were told to "wash their clothes" (Ex 19:10). Under the law, clothing that was made of mixed materials was forbidden (Deut 22:11). Men were forbidden to wear women's clothes, and women were forbidden to wear men's clothing (Deut 22:5). Women are especially reminded to wear "modest apparel," coupled with good works (1 Tim 2:9-10). Their outward adorning is not to be considered the source of their attractiveness (1 Pet 3:3). One of the objections Jesus registered against the scribes was what they wore -- "long robes" (Luke 20:46). Jude said when dealing with certain sinners, care must be taken to hate the garment that is "spotted by the flesh" (Jude 1:23). All of this does not support the notion that God has no concern about what people wear.
There is clothing that identifies what a person is. When Tamar deceived Jacob, she put off her widow's garments and attired herself like a harlot (Gen 38:13-15). There was a just cause behind her action -- but the distinction of the clothing is the point.
The statement that God "doesn't care what you wear" is not accurate. God cares if a man dresses like a woman, or a women dresses like a man. I do not know how you could justify a person dressing like a harlot - and they do dress in a certain way, making them recognizable. God cares if dress is immodest. God cares if men draw undue attention to themselves by their attire, or woman try to appear to be more than they really are in their dress.
God does look upon the heart, but that does not suggest He is indifferent to what one wears. It means the BASIS for God's view is the heart. Notwithstanding, Adam and Eve still had to have a change of clothes. To be more particular, and in keeping with Scriptural doctrine, the people should be taught to wear appropriate clothing that does not draw undue attention to the flesh, and does not provoke unlawful desires in others. When presenting themselves to the Lord, they should be clean, and honor Him with their best. The value of such clothing is of no consequence, as long as it reflects the truth that God is over all, and is worthy of the best of whatever we have -- whether it is our minds, our affections, our will, our words, or even our clothing and means of employment. How could any person justify giving God less than their best and what is first. God has always taught men to think of Him as worthy of their best.
When I preached in Indiana, we had a number of visitors owing to several radio programs that I had. Some of them were professional women who came attired in mini-skirts (in those days they were super-mini skirts). I taught them that when God ordained the Law, the priests were to wear certain clothes that were tailored for the occasion. Because they came up to the altar on a kind of slope, it was possible to see beneath their robes. God gave them this instruction: "And you shall make for them linen breeches to cover their naked flesh; from the loins to the thighs they shall reach" (Ex 28:42). I told these ladies it was inappropriate to expose so much of their flesh, and explained why. I then purchased them modest dresses, for none of them owed any. For a while, they would change their clothes when they came to the meetings. Soon they saw the sense of it all, and purchased their own dresses. Even if all a person has are old and tattered garments, they ought to be clean, modest, sufficient to cover their nakedness, and unspotted by the flesh -- that is, not clothing that reminds people of sin and uncleanness.
Care must be taken ion adopting some of the religious hackneyed sayings that have become common in our time. "God doesn't care what you wear" is one of them. It is too clumsy, incomplete, and conducive to wrong conclusions. Other such sayings are, "God loves you no matter what you do," "God loves everyone the same," "God can handle the wrong things you do," etc. Concerning our speech, we are admonished, "You must teach what is in accord with sound doctrine" (Titus 2:1, NIV).
A LENGTHY DIALOG CONCERNING THE ANTICHRIST
Question 1 - “When the rapture happens, do you think people will hear the sound of the trumpet (or shofar)? Will it be visible for the whole earth? Or will millions of people disappear at once with silence to leave the world in confusion?”
First, the word “rapture” is not mentioned in the Bible. Its use is based upon a statement made in First Thessalonians 4:16-17: “For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first: Then we which are alive and remain shall be CAUGHT UP TOGETHER with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord” (1 Theses 4:16-17). There is no suggestion in all of Scripture that this is secret, which is the idea that men have attached to the word “rapture.” In fact, in his Second letter to the Thessalonians, Paul says that the wicked will be punished “with everlasting exclusion from the presence of the Lord . . . WHEN HE SHALL COME TO BE GLORIFIED IN HIS SAINTS, AND TO BE ADMIRED IN ALL THEM THAT BELIEVE” (2 Thess 2:7-10). In fact, in His parable of the wheat and the tares, Jesus said the wicked would actually be removed first: “Let both grow together until the harvest: and in the time of harvest I will say to the reapers, Gather ye together first the tares, and bind them in bundles to burn them: but gather the wheat into my barn . . . As therefore the tares are gathered and burned in the fire; so shall it be in the end of this world. The Son of man shall send forth his angels, and they shall gather out of his kingdom all things that offend, and them which do iniquity; And shall cast them into a furnace of fire: there shall be wailing and gnashing of teeth. Then shall the righteous shine forth as the sun in the kingdom of their Father. Who hath ears to hear, let him hear” (Mat 13:30, 40-43).
Yes, everyone will hear both the trumpet and the shout – for that is the only reason to either blow a trumpet or shout – it is to be heard. Revelation 1:7 reminds us that “every eye shall see Him” when He comes. Jesus said He would raise all of the dead – both the righteous and the wicked – at the same time, and with a word: “Marvel not at this: for the hour is coming, in the which all that are in the graves shall hear his voice, And shall come forth; they that have done good, unto the resurrection of life; and they that have done evil, unto the resurrection of damnation” (John 5:28-29).
Jesus is going to come in all of His glory, also with the glory of the Father, and of the angels as well: “For the Son of man shall come in the glory of his Father with his angels; and then he shall reward every man according to his works” (Matt 16:27). The Scriptures represent Jesus as coming one more time. We never read of His comings. That one time will be a grand conclusion of God’s work on this earth. John said the heavens and earth would flee from before His face: “And I saw a great white throne, and him that sat on it, from whose face the earth and the heaven fled away; and there was found no place for them” (Rev 20:11). That is, when Jesus is seen as He is, the next thing on the agenda is the day of judgment.
The sons of God have been under cover since Jesus returned to heaven. When He comes again, they will be revealed, not concealed. Every eye will see Him, which means the dead will all be raised, in the twinkling of an eye. Paul wrote that at the resurrection of the dead, the time when believers themselves are all raised, that at that time, those who are alive, having remained in this world until that time, will be changed, putting on an incorruptible body. At that time, it is affirmed death and the grave will have been defeated. “In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump: for the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed. For this corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal must put on immortality. So when this corruptible shall have put on incorruption, and this mortal shall have put on immortality, then shall be brought to pass the saying that is written, Death is swallowed up in victory. O death, where is thy sting? O grave, where is thy victory? (1 Cor 15:53-55). Death cannot have been defeated if remain in this world living in the flesh.
Men have so garbled the truth of the coming of the Lord that, to many, these straightforward statements make no sense at all. However, for those who are really looking forward to the Lord’s return, which grace teaches us to do (Tit 2:11-12), all of this makes perfect sense, and is good news.
Question: Call you tell me specifics about what the bible says about the Anti-Christ? What nation does he come out of & how old will he be? Does he have to have a multi-race & multi-religion backround? Does he have to be jewish or roman or a middle eastern nation or can it be a nation like the United States? Is it possible to have a female anti-christ?
First, the word “Antichrist” occurs four times in the Bible – all of them are in John’s letters.
1. “Little children, it is the last time: and as ye have heard that antichrist shall come, even now are there many antichrists; whereby we know that it is the last time” (1 John 2:18).
2. “Who is a liar but he that denieth that Jesus is the Christ? He is antichrist, that denieth the Father and the Son” (1 John 2:22).
3. “And every spirit that confesseth not that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh is not of God: and this is that spirit of antichrist, whereof ye have heard that it should come; and even now already is it in the world” (1 John 4:3).
4. “For many deceivers are entered into the world, who confess not that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh. This is a deceiver and an antichrist” (2 John 1:7).
5. John also says there are “many antichrists: – “Little children, it is the last time: and as ye have heard that antichrist shall come, even now are there many antichrists; whereby we know that it is the last time” (1 John 2:18).
Now, so far as the word “Antichrist” is concerned, that is all the information we have to work with.
Second, both the Prophets and Apostles mentioned an evil despot who would deceive the people, and claim Divine prerogatives. Theologians have associated these texts with what it said by John concerning “antichrist.” Neither Jesus nor any of the apostles made such an association. Here are the texts these men say refer to “the Antichrist.” We only have the words of uninspired men to prove there is an association of these texts with “the Antichrist.” I personally do not feel comfortable with that circumstance.
1. DANIEL – “Little horn” –
“I considered the horns, and, behold, there came up among them another little horn, before whom there were three of the first horns plucked up by the roots: and, behold, in this horn were eyes like the eyes of man, and a mouth speaking great things” (Dan 7:8).
“And out of one of them came forth a little horn, which waxed exceeding great, toward the south, and toward the east, and toward the pleasant land. And it waxed great, even to the host of heaven; and it cast down some of the host and of the stars to the ground, and stamped upon them. Yea, he magnified himself even to the prince of the host, and by him the daily sacrifice was taken away, and the place of his sanctuary was cast down. And an host was given him against the daily sacrifice by reason of transgression, and it cast down the truth to the ground; and it practiced, and prospered” (Dan 8:9-12).
2. DANIEL – A “horn,” or ruler that is different from the other rulers –
“And the ten horns out of this kingdom are ten kings that shall arise: and another shall rise after them; and he shall be diverse from the first, and he shall subdue three kings. And he shall speak great words against the most High, and shall wear out the saints of the most High, and think to change times and laws: and they shall be given into his hand until a time and times and the dividing of time” (Dan 7:24-25).
3. DANIEL – a “King” –
“And the king shall do according to his will; and he shall exalt himself, and magnify himself above every god, and shall speak marvelous things against the God of gods, and shall prosper till the indignation be accomplished: for that that is determined shall be done. Neither shall he regard the God of his fathers, nor the desire of women, nor regard any god: for he shall magnify himself above all. But in his estate shall he honor the God of forces: and a god whom his fathers knew not shall he honor with gold, and silver, and with precious stones, and pleasant things” (Dan 11:36-38).
4. PAUL – “Son of perdition” –
“Let no man deceive you by any means: for that day shall not come, except there come a falling away first, and that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition” (2 Thess 2:3).
5. PAUL – “The man of sin” –
“Let no man deceive you by any means: for that day shall not come, except there come a falling away first, and that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition; Who opposeth and exalteth himself above all that is called God, or that is worshipped; so that he as God sitteth in the temple of God, showing himself that he is God” (2 Thess 2:4).
6. PAUL – “The Wicked One,” or “Lawless One” –
“And then shall that Wicked be revealed, whom the Lord shall consume with the spirit of his mouth, and shall destroy with the brightness of his coming: Even him, whose coming is after the working of Satan with all power and signs and lying wonders, and with all deceivableness of unrighteousness in them that perish; because they received not the love of the truth, that they might be saved” (2 Thess 2:8-10).
7. JOHN – “The False Prophet” –
And I saw three unclean spirits like frogs come out of the mouth of the dragon, and out of the mouth of the beast, and out of the mouth of the false prophet” (Rev 16:13).
“And the beast was taken, and with him the false prophet that wrought miracles before him, with which he deceived them that had received the mark of the beast, and them that worshipped his image. These both were cast alive into a lake of fire burning with brimstone” (Rev 19:20).
“And the devil that deceived them was cast into the lake of fire and brimstone, where the beast and the false prophet are, and shall be tormented day and night for ever and ever” (Rev 20:10).
8. JOHN – “The Beast” – “And when they shall have finished their testimony, the beast that ascendeth out of the bottomless pit shall make war against them, and shall overcome them, and kill them” (Rev 11:7).
“And the beast which I saw was like unto a leopard, and his feet were as the feet of a bear, and his mouth as the mouth of a lion: and the dragon gave him his power, and his seat, and great authority. And I saw one of his heads as it were wounded to death; and his deadly wound was healed: and all the world wondered after the beast. And they worshipped the dragon which gave power unto the beast: and they worshipped the beast, saying, Who is like unto the beast? who is able to make war with him?” (Rev 13:2-4).
“And deceiveth them that dwell on the earth by the means of those miracles which he had power to do in the sight of the beast; saying to them that dwell on the earth, that they should make an image to the beast, which had the wound by a sword, and did live. And he had power to give life unto the image of the beast, that the image of the beast should both speak, and cause that as many as would not worship the image of the beast should be killed. And he causeth all, both small and great, rich and poor, free and bond, to receive a mark in their right hand, or in their foreheads: And that no man might buy or sell, save he that had the mark, or the name of the beast, or the number of his name. Here is wisdom. Let him that hath understanding count the number of the beast: for it is the number of a man; and his number is Six hundred threescore and six” (Rev 13:14-18).
“And the third angel followed them, saying with a loud voice, If any man worship the beast and his image, and receive his mark in his forehead, or in his hand, The same shall drink of the wine of the wrath of God, which is poured out without mixture into the cup of his indignation; and he shall be tormented with fire and brimstone in the presence of the holy angels, and in the presence of the Lamb: And the smoke of their torment ascendeth up for ever and ever: and they have no rest day nor night, who worship the beast and his image, and whosoever receiveth the mark of his name” (Rev 14:9-11).
“And I saw as it were a sea of glass mingled with fire: and them that had gotten the victory over the beast, and over his image, and over his mark, and over the number of his name, stand on the sea of glass, having the harps of God” (Rev 15:2). “And the first went, and poured out his vial upon the earth; and there fell a noisome and grievous sore upon the men which had the mark of the beast, and upon them which worshipped his image” (Rev 16:2).
“And the fifth angel poured out his vial upon the seat of the beast; and his kingdom was full of darkness; and they gnawed their tongues for pain” (Rev 16:10).
“And I saw three unclean spirits like frogs come out of the mouth of the dragon, and out of the mouth of the beast, and out of the mouth of the false prophet” (Rev 16:13).
“And I saw the beast, and the kings of the earth, and their armies, gathered together to make war against him that sat on the horse, and against his army. And the beast was taken, and with him the false prophet that wrought miracles before him, with which he deceived them that had received the mark of the beast, and them that worshipped his image. These both were cast alive into a lake of fire burning with brimstone” (Rev 19:20).
“And I saw thrones, and they sat upon them, and judgment was given unto them: and I saw the souls of them that were beheaded for the witness of Jesus, and for the word of God, and which had not worshipped the beast, neither his image, neither had received his mark upon their foreheads, or in their hands; and they lived and reigned with Christ a thousand years” (Rev 20:4).
“And the devil that deceived them was cast into the lake of fire and brimstone, where the beast and the false prophet are, and shall be tormented day and night for ever and ever” (Rev 20:10).
You can access my commentary on the book of the Revelation for a detailed exposition of all of these texts. The link is. http://wotruth.com/revelationindex.htm
The questions you asked were, “What nation does he come out of & how old will he be? Does he have to have a multi-race & multi-religion background? Does he have to be Jewish or Roman or a middle eastern nation or can it be a nation like the United States? Is it possible to have a female anti-christ?” If we limit ourselves to the Scriptures, which I do, none of those questions are answerable. God has not revealed an answer to them, which means they are not even valid questions. I have given you every verse in the Bible that mentions the word “Antichrist.” None of them address these questions. I have also given you other texts that certain teachers say are speaking of the “Antichrist” – even though none of the texts say that, nor did Jesus of the Apostles refer to them as speaking of “the Antichrist.” Even those texts do not address the questions you have asked.
The Word of God exhorts us to “avoid foolish questions” – that is, questions that cannot be satisfactorily answered (Tit 3:9). They also inform us that such questions “gender strifes,” or cause needless arguments because they cannot really be answered (2 Tim 2:23).
Whether we are speaking about the texts that directly mention the word “Antichrist,” or those texts that men thing refer to such a person, the point of Scripture is that such an enemy is going to be overthrown. Jesus will destroy Him “with the spirit of His mouth and the brightness of his coming” – 2 Thess 2:6. The coming of such a person is said to be “after the working of Satan” (2 Thess 2:8).
Jesus said “For many shall come in my name, saying, I am Christ; and shall deceive many. (Matt 24:5). He spoke of “false Christ’s” (Matt 24:24; Mark 13:6; Luke 21:8). He simply instructed us to pay no attention to them, listen to them, or follow them.
Question: Our current president came up from his party virtually unknown. He beat all the major competition from his party & the other party with ease. I heard his speech in Germany - the language he used sounds like he wants to rule the world. He seems to be an agent of peace. He has done nothing major but has a unnatural following. Women are having dreams about him (if you know what I mean) reported by major newspaper. (ny times blog) People are worshiping his body. (According to Fox news) In town hall meetings people are referring to him as God. (a recent meeting in Florida) His opponents ad campain referred to him as the one (the messiah) (searchable on youtube, paid for by the person of the other party). World leaders love him & have high hopes for him even though he hasn't been office for even a month yet. I noticed he does not tell people to stop refering to himself as God. He lets people refer to him as God. Could this man be the anti-christ? Or do you believe he isn't the real anti-christ but is preparing the world for the real anti-christ? There is many more thoughts & questions about this topic that bothers me but I think I've asked enough for this email. I look forward to hearing from a bibically educated man like yourself.
As to president Obama being “the Antichrist,” I do not believe this is so. He does have a lot of things against him. I question that he is born again. He has taken some stands are contrary to the will of God – but all of that can be said of quite a few presidents.
As you can see, it has taken quite a while to address the matters you mentioned. In my judgment, however, all of this time has yielded no real benefit, because God Himself has not addressed the questions. In my judgment, it is wrong to pursue this kind of knowledge. I recommend looking into the Person of Jesus Christ, for that is the One concerning which God has given a record. When we truly know Him, we will be able to recognize intruders and avoid them..
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