Over the past
year, I have studied the Bible in greater depth and for longer periods of time
than ever before in my life. This in-depth study by subject has opened my mind
to truths in the Bible that I never fully understood before. Studying the Bible
by subject requires one to look at all
the texts on a certain subject, rather than just a few.This gives us a much better understanding of
what God is trying to tell us in His Word.
Questions I have studied in depth
include, but are not limited to, the following:
1) Where does a person go when he or
2) Which day has
God ordained for us to worship Him? Or are we free to choose a day on our own?
Does it matter to God? Are we to keep the Sabbath-day holy? If so, which day is
the Sabbath, Saturday or Sunday, and HOW should we "keep" it holy?
What does that entail?
3) Have the
traditions of some churches altered the Ten Commandments from the way God gave
them? Were the Ten Commandments done away with at the Cross? If so, can we
break all of them with impunity? If not, which ones are O.K. to break, and why?
4) If God COULD
save everybody, would He? If He CAN'T save everyone, then He is not sovereign!
If He CAN save everyone, but He chooses NOT to, what does that say about the
character of God?
5) Since the Bible says that our body is the temple of God, does God expect us to take proper care of our body?
Does that include the way we feed and maintain our body? Does the Bible give
specific directions on how we are to eat?
who necessarily look to the Bible as the authority for the answers to spiritual
questions have from time to time struggled with finding answers to these
1) Why did God create perfect beings, Adam and Eve, into
a Universe already heavily contaminated with sin? (Satan and his angels had
been sinning for a long, long time already.) Why didn't God SOLVE the problem
with the angels, after all they're the ones who started it all, rather than
dragging us, the human race, into this mess?
2) How can "Death" and "Hell" be
thrown into a LITERALLake of Fire? ()
Why does God tell US to LOVE our enemies, and do GOOD to those who hate us (Luke
), if God is
going to bumup HIS enemies?
4) If Jesus is going to bring "fire down from
heaven" to destroy the wicked in the end, why did He say, when He was on
earth, that that type of activity was of Satan? (Luke 9:51-56)
5) Why did the Good Shepherd, representing Jesus, search
for the lost sheep "until He found it" (Luke 15:4) with NO cut-off
time whatsoever, whereas Christians believe that there is a DEFINITE cut-off
time when there is no more chance of being found (saved)?
6) If Jesus didn't destroy or even hurt anyone when He
was on earth, why is He going to destroy people in the end? After all, He says
He "NEVER changes." (Mal 3:6, Heb 13:8)
7) God does not use euphemisms in the Bible, so what
does the term "Forever and Ever" mean? (Rev 22:5) How can you add an
"Ever" to "Forever?"
8) Why does God tell us, in the Ten Commandments,
"Thou shall NOT kill" when it's apparently okay for Him to kill
millions of people (the flood, the Assyrian army, etc)? Is God ABOVE His own
Commandments? I thought the Ten Commandments were a transcript of God's character!
9) Why did Jesus tell Judas to "Do what you're
going to do, and do it QUICKLY" (John ) if Jesus knew that by betraying the Lord, Judas would
be eternally lost?
10) How can there be an "Unpardonable Sin" if
Psalm 103:3 says that God "forgives ALL
How is God going "to wipe away ALL our tears" after He's burned up
members of our family? Will He give us a lobotomy, or will we just not care
that they were burned up? If God put this great love in our heart for our
children and other family members, Why would we not be sorrowful and grieve
when they are destroyed?
12) The pagan God Molech required "human burning
sacrifices" in order to be appeased. How does God differ from Molech if
He, too, requires "human burning sacrifices" in the end - to be
appeased (to show justice)? If YOU burned up your children, would that be
considered a "loving Act?" Why is it "loving" when GOD does
If God hardened Pharaoh's heart as He claims He did in (Ex , 27), how, then, is Pharaoh totally responsible for
what He did?
14) Why does God say that He (God)
killed Saul (1 Chron. , 14) when the Bible says that Saul
killed himself (1 Sam 31:4: 1 Chron 10:4-6)?
If we have a "Free Will" then why does God say that He is "operating all things according
to the counsel of HIS OWN WILL"?
(Eph 1:11) That certainly sounds like we DON'T have "Free Will."
Why did God put the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil AND Satan right in Adam and
Eve's front yard if He didn't really want them to sin? God's own rules of
liability, as found in Exodus 22:5, 6 and Exodus , 34, tell us that Godisresponsible for Sin
in the world if He could have prevented it and didn't. In fact, God ADMITS He
is responsible! (Romans 8:20)
Can Satan do ANYTHING that God doesn't allow? If God allows it, is it then
18) How can a
"Loving" God allow innocent children to be abused?
If "God is Love" (1 John ) and "LoveNEVERfails" (1 Cor. 13:8) then how can God
fail to win ALL of His children back from Satan? Or will Satan be the big
Jesus said "Angels Don't Die." (Luke 20:36) If they don't, then how
is God going to destroy Satan and the evil angels? How does one "burn
up" a Spirit being? If they are going to burn forever, then will sin
co-exist with righteousness in the universe FOREVER? If so, then Jesus' death
on the Cross did NOT do away with sin! But if wicked people and evil angels are
all going to burn up right away, then that's not justice because doesn't a
serial killer deserve more punishment than a one-time embezzler?
21 ) If Jesus died the "Second Death" on the
Cross so we don't have to die and if the "Second Death" is permanent
annihilation or eternal burning, then WHY isn't Jesus either still burning or
still dead? Since He's alive, He must not have died the Second Death. So WHY
did He die? Or have we misunderstood the "Second Death"?
My study over the past year has, from time to time,
sought answers to these foregoing 21 questions. This analysis is at this time
limited to the five topics found on page 1 -
There are at
least 25 Bible texts that tell us that death is a sleep, and that when a person
is dead, he remains in the grave and he has no thoughts. He is in a state of
lack of unconsciousness.He knows
nothing.He is not in heaven nor
hell.He is in the grave and knows
Himself, plainly stated that the dead remain in the grave (John ,29) until either the first
resurrection, which occurs at the second coming of Jesus, or the second resurrection,
which occurs after the one thousand year millennium.
A few of these
texts make the point:
the living know they will die, butthedeadknownothing; they have no further reward,
for even the memory of them is forgotten. Also their love, and their hatred,
and their envy, is now perished; neitherhavetheyanyshareinanythingthatisdone. Whatever your
hand finds to do, do it with all your might, for in the grave, where you are
going, thereisneitherworkingnorplanningnorknowledgenorwisdom. Ecclesiastes 9:5
Daviddidnotascendintotheheaven, but he says himself, the Lord
said to my Lord, sit at my right hand. Acts
not marvel at this, for the hour is coming in which all who are in the grave
will hear His voice and come forth, those who have done good to the
resurrection of life, and those who have done evil, to the resurrection of
My Father's house are many rooms, if it were not so, I would have told
you.I go to prepare a place for you.
And if I go and prepare a place for you, Iwill comeagainandreceiveyoutoMyself,thatwhereIam,thereyoumaybe also. John 14:2,3
The question is, why does Jesus have to come and get
them if they are already in heaven?
Jesus did not go to heaven immediately at death. He
reappeared to Mary Magdalene outside the empty tomb "wearing" His
body, (He did not separate
His "Spirit" from His body) and uttered these words:
detain Me, for IhavenotyetascendedtoMyFather, but go to the brethren and say
to them, I am ascending to My Father and your Father, and to My God and your
God." John 20:17
There are a few texts that are used to suggest the
doctrine of "immortality of the soul," meaning that when you die, you
are still really alive, just in a different form, for example, 2 Corinthians
Therefore we are always confident, knowing that while we
are at home in the body we are absent from the Lord.
And verse 8:
We are confident, yes, well leased rather to be absent
from the body and to be present with the Lord.
What does Paul mean by the expression "absent from
the body, and present with the Lord"?
Does the use of the phrase "present with the
Lord" mean that Paul inferred that immediately on physical death a
believer goes to heaven to be with the Lord? Not likely when we consider these
other utterances by Paul relating to this subject.
Human beings do not have immortality, only God does (1 Timothy ).
We receive immortality when Jesus comes again (1 Corinthians -54).
Paul was waiting for the coming of the Lord for his final reward (1 Timothy
We "seek for immortality" (Romans 2:7). Why do we seek it if we
already have it?
The Biblical account of Lazarus is found in John
11:1-44. Mary and Martha's brother, Lazarus, was ill. Word came to Jesus to
come to heal him. Jesus called Death - a Sleep! (John 11:11-14) Jesus said that
Lazarus was asleep, but Jesus would wake him up. Then the disciples realized
that Jesus meant that Lazarus was dead.
Verse 11. These things He said, and after that He said
to them, "OurfriendLazarussleeps, but I
may go that I may wake him up."
Based on this
statement of Jesus, His disciples believed Lazarus would wake up. Then Jesus made
the status of Lazarus quite plain in verses 14 and 15.
Verses 14,15. "Lazarusisdead. And I am glad for your sakes that I was not there, that you
may believe. Nevertheless let us go to him."
So, Jesus, Himself, characterized
DEATH as a sleep, a state of unconsciousness, during which the person knows
John further related that Jesus went to the tomb where
Lazarus had lain for four days and told his friends to "take away the
stone," Verse 39. Lazarus obviously did not go to Heaven at his death. He
remained in the tomb and was brought back to life by the miraculous healing
power of Jesus. When Lazarus was resurrected, he mentioned NOTHING about having
been in heaven.
In fact, wouldn't it be cruel of Jesus to bring Lazarus
back to earth from heaven, just to live a longer life of sin and then to die,
possibly a painful death, once again!
When will a Christian who dies a physical death and
sleeps in the grave ascend into Heaven and be with the Lord?
comes from 1 Corinthians 15:23:
But every man in his own order: Christ, the first
fruits: afterward they that are Christ's at His coming.
When Jesus returns to earth at His second coming, those
who truly know Christ who are asleep in the grave will ascend into Heaven to be
with the Lord.
Pastors in Lutheran Church Missouri Synod (LCMS)
congregations have consistently preached that when Christians die, they
immediately are in Heaven with the Lord.
Do we observe the Sabbath on the 7th day, Saturday, or
on the first day of the week, Sunday?
Which day has
God ordained for us to worship Him? Or are we free to choose a day on our own?
Does it matter to God? Are we to keep the Sabbath-day holy? If so, which day is
the Sabbath, Saturday or Sunday, and HOW should we "keep" it holy?
Exodus 20:1-18, contains the Ten Commandments. Verses
8-11 contain the reference to the Sabbath.It is identified in the King James Version of the Bible, and virtually
ALL other Bible versions, as the fourth commandment.
8: Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy.
Verse 9: Six days shalt thou labour, and do all thy
Verse 10: But
the seventhdayistheSabbath of the Lord thy God: in itthoushaltnotdoanywork, thou, nor thy son, nor thy daughter, thy manservant, nor thy
maidservant, nor thy cattle, nor thy stranger that is within thy gates:
Verse 11: For in six days the Lord made heaven and
earth, the sea, and all that in them is, and rested the seventh day: wherefore
There are two separate issues presented by the
consideration of this question. First, are we Christians directed to observe
the Sabbath on the seventh day, Saturday, or on the first day of the week,
The second issue is separate from the first. How should
the Seventh-day Sabbath be kept? Namely, what type of activity may Christians
participate in on the Sabbath? Fortunately, Jesus' life on earth has shown us
the specific answers to these questions.
Luke describes on
what day Jesus observed the Sabbath and helps provide the answer:
He came to Nazareth where He had
been brought up: and, as His custom was, He went into the synagogue on the
Sabbath day, and stood up for to read."
Initially, it is important to ask the question, what
difference does it make whether Christians observe Sabbath on the seventh day,
Saturday, or the first day, Sunday?
Thou shalt therefore keep the commandments, and the
statutes, and the judgments, which I command thee this day, to do them.
First of all, God, Himself, instituted the Seventh-day
Sabbath at Creation, as a memorial of His creation of the earth and all else
that God has created. It was given to Adam and Eve and ALL their progeny, which
includes ALL mankind!
the heavens and the earth were finished, and all the host of them.
And on the Seventh day god ended His work, which he had
made; and He rested (stopped) on the Seventh day from all His work that He had
blessed the Seventh day, and sanctified it (made it Holy) because in it He had
rested (stopped) from all His work that God created and made." Genesis 2:1-3
was given to Adam and Eve and their progeny (ALL mankind), at Creation, 2,300
years BEFORE the existence of the
"Jews." Therefore, the Seventh-day Sabbath
is NOT Jewish!
Commandment says: "Remember the Sabbath day to keep it holy. Six days
shalt thou labor and do ALL thy work, but the Seventh day is the Sabbath of the
Lord thy God; in it thou shalt NOT do any work. . . the Lord blessed the
Sabbath day, and hallowed it (made it holy). Exodus 20:8-11
GodwrotetheTenCommandmentsHimself,withHisownfinger,instone! What more could He have done to
show us howimportant, and howpermanent, they are?
If youloveMe,keepMy commandments.John14:15
was made for mankind (humanity - ALL humanity) . . ." Mark
On what day
did Jesus Christ observe the Sabbath?
came to Nazareth where He had
been brought up: and, asHiscustomwas, He went into
the synagogue on the Sabbath day, and stood up to read." Luke 4:16
Luke wrote his
account several decades after Christ's crucifixion. He reported the Sabbath
observance in Luke 23:56:
returned, and prepared spices and ointments and rested on the Sabbath day accordingtothecommandment."
On what day of
the week did the apostles observe the Sabbath after Jesus' crucifixion and
resurrection? Acts provides the
But when they
departed from Perga, they came to Antioch in Pisidia,
and went into the synagogue on the Sabbath day, and sat down. Acts
On what day
did Paul keep the Sabbath?
And on the
Sabbath we went out of the city by a river side, where prayer was made: and we
sat down and spoke unto the women which met there. Acts
Which day is
the "Lord's Day"?
Son of Man is Lord even of the Sabbath day." Matthew 12:8
The "Lord's Day" is the
God grants a special blessing to those
who keep the Seventh-day Sabbath.
"Blessed is the man that doeth this, and the son of
man that layeth hold on it: that keepeth the Sabbath from polluting it, and
keepeth his hand from doing any evil."
Sunday come into the picture as the day of worship?
In the second
century A.D., in Rome and Alexandria, Egypt, there was a
growing anti- Jewish sentiment which resulted in Sunday being selected as the
day for Gentile Christians to observe the Sabbath.
Testament's silence about the weekly observance of Sunday, in contrast to the
recurring statements about the Sabbath, provides convincing evidence that there
was no such Sunday observance in New Testament Christianity.
In fact, the words, "first day of the week,"
and the word "Sunday" NEVER appear in the New Testament in the
original Greek. They have been "written in" by the translators.
On March 7, 321 A.D., Constantine made a rest
day by the issuance of a Sunday law. It is quite likely that Constantine, on political
and social grounds, endeavored to merge together heathen and Christian elements
of his constituency by designating Sunday as a day of rest and to observe the
"Sabbath." Since that time the Catholic church and most Protestant
churches have erroneously observed Sunday as the "Sabbath" to this day.
fifty percent of His recorded healings on one day of the week, the seventh-day
Sabbath. From His example we learn that "It is lawful to do good on the
the man at the Pool of Bethesda on the Sabbath - the man had been infirm for 38
years. The Pharisees were angry with the healed man because Jesus had healed
him on the seventh-day Sabbath. "The Jews persecuted Jesus and sought to kill
Him, for He did these things on the Sabbath.Yet, Jesus answered them, My Father is working hitherto, and I am
working."Therefore, then, the Jews
sought the more to kill Him, for He not only loosed the Sabbath (from
burdensome laws that the Pharisees had placed on it) but said His own Father
also is God, making Himself equal to God."
If thou turn away thy foot from the Sabbath, fromdoingthypleasure on My holy day; and calltheSabbathadelight,
the holy of the Lord, honorable; and shall honor Him, notdoingthineownpleasure,norspeakingthineownwords.
Then shalt thou delight thyself in the Lord: and I will
cause thee to ride upon the high places of the earth. . ." Isaiah a58:13,14
In 1932, the LCMS adopted a "Brief Statement"
of the Doctrinal Position of the Missouri Synod.
19, paragraph 41, is titled "Of Sunday." It provides as follows:
We teach that in the New Testament God has abrogated the
Sabbath and II holy- days prescribed for the Church of the Old Covenant, so
that neither "the keeping of the Sabbath nor of any other day" nor
the observance of at least one specific day of the seven days of the week is
ordained or commanded by God. Colossians 2:16; Romans 14:5 (Augsburg
Confession; Triglot, p 91, 51-60; M.,
The observance of Sunday and other church festivals is
an ordinance of the Church, made by virtue of Christian liberty. (Augsburg Confession: Triglot, p. 91, 51-53, 60; M., p. 66.
Large Catechism; Triglot p. 603,
83,85,89; M. p. 401.) Hence Christians should not regard such ordinances as
ordained by God and binding upon the conscience, Col. 2:16; Gal . However, for the sake of Christian
love and peace they should willingly observe them, Rom 14:13; 1 Cor. 14:40.
(Augsburg Confession; Triglot, p. 91,
53-56; M., p 67.)
Two Scriptural references are cited as authority for the
LCMS to abrogate the direct command of God in the fourth commandment to observe
a Seventh-day Sabbath.
Colossians 2:16. Therefore, let no one judge you in food
or drink, or regarding a festival or a new moon or sabbaths.
This passage from Colossians, when read in context,
relates to a feast day Sabbath, NOT the Seventh day Sabbath. (Reference to the
feast day Sabbath is clearly stated in Leviticus 23:11 - "He shall wave
his sheaf before the Lord, to be accepted on your behalf on the day after the
Sabbath the priest shall wave it.") Observance of a feasts day Sabbath, a
ceremonial act, was abrogated by the death of Jesus Christ on the cross.
However, this passage in Colossians certainly does not negate the clear command
of God to observe the Seventh-day Sabbath as revealed in Leviticus 23:3, Exodus
20:8-11, Deut 5:12-15 and Genesis 2:1 -3.
A second verse, Romans 14:5, is also listed as authority
to justify the conclusion in paragraph 41. It provides:
One person esteems one day above another; another
esteems every day alike. Let each be fully convinced in his own mind.
understanding to verse 5, it is necessary to read and consider verse 1. Verse 1 through verse
5 relates to "doubtful things." The direct command of God in
Leviticus 23:3 and
Exodus 20:8-11 and Deut 5:12-1510 observe the Seventh-day Sabbath is not a
"doubtful thing." Verse 5 relates to disputes about what foods to eat
and about fasting.It certainly is not a direct command from
Scripture to absolve mankind from observing the
seventh day Sabbath described in Leviticus 23:3 and the other texts just mentioned.
Four versions of the Ten Commandments are set forth: a)
The Law of God from the Old Testament, b) the New Testament, c) as changed by
the Papacy, and d) as written in Luther's Large Catechism.
Both the Catholic Church and Martin Luther in the Large
Catechism have deleted the second commandment from the Ten Commandments. A
relevant question is: Who authorized either religious group or person to make
the deletion, particularly when one considers that God Himself wrote ALL of the
commandments with His own finger in stone?
The fourth commandment as found in the Bible has been
substantially? shortened and numbered as the third commandment in the Catholic
Catechism and Luther's Large Catechism. Since Martin Luther was a monk in the
Catholic Church before he undertook the Reformation in 1517, Luther probably
just repeated the accepted erroneous Catholic version of the Ten Commandments
in his Large Catechism.
question is: What human being could possibly claim the right to CHANGE the Word
It is not a mystery why the Catholic Church and Martin
Luther omitted the Second Commandment because the Catholic Church has always
It is also not too difficult to establish a reason why
the Catholic Church retained only the first sentence of the fourth commandment,
deleting all the rest.The Catholic
Church worships on Sunday, a day of worship that is nowhere endorsed in the
Word of God. In 321 A. D., Constantine gave
Christianity a new status in the Roman Empire by recognizing
it, and Constantine gave Sunday a
"new look." By omitting this language:
"Six days shalt thou labor, and do all thy work;
but the Seventh day is the Sabbath of the Lord thy God; in it thou shalt not do
Church probably sought to accommodate the recognition extended by Constantine
who established Sunday as the rest day even though this contradicted the express
will of God in the Bible that the Seventh-day, Saturday, was the choice of God.
Never once, after Jesus was resurrected, did He state
that the Seventh-day Sabbath had been abolished. Never once, after Jesus was
resurrected, did Jesus say that the Seventh-day Sabbath would no longer be
The Seventh-day Sabbath is a memorial of God's Creation
(Genesis 2:1-3). He made it holy as His final crowning act of Creation. In
addition, in the fourth Commandment, the Sabbath commandment, in Exodus
20:8-11, God states that we are to keep the Seventh-day Sabbath BECAUSE He is
our Creator. (Verses 10,11)
Eusebius, who was Constantine's biographer,
in his commentary on Psalm 92, wrote that Christians would fulfill on the
"Lord's day" all that in this Psalm was prescribed for the Sabbath,
including worship of God early in the morning. He then stated that through this
new covenant the Sabbath celebration was transferred to "the first day of
of how, and or when, the Christian Church came to regard Sunday as the "Sabbath,"
the relevant question once again is the same as related to the outright omission
of the second commandment; WhoauthorizedeithertheCatholicChurchorMartinLutherortheLCMStomakethisdeletionfromtheexpresslanguageofthefourthcommandmentaswrittenbyGod?
Whatever the reason for the omission, no human being has
been authorized by God to change His express command. Christian people should
obey God's express words.
4) UNIVERSAL RESTORATION
WHAT DOES THE
BIBLE SAY IS THE NATURE OF GOD
WILL ONLY SOME
BE SAVED, OR WILL ALL BE SAVED?
"Consider the time-honored theories about God. He
is viewed as One who initially seeks the salvation of His creatures. From His
position of supreme authority, He calls upon men to repent of their sins, obey
His will and worship Him. He demonstrates patience while men play with His
appeals, but the time comes when that patience is exhausted. Then He arises to
perform His 'strange act.' With terrifying power, wielded in His own hands, He
wipes the rebellious from the face of the earth, thus demonstrating that He is
not a God to be scorned. He thus asserts His will by the naked use of
destructive force, convincing men that they must obey Him or perish. This is
the view of the Christian world."
Nowlet'slookatthewaySatanworks. He appears initially to seek the
best for Christ when, in Matthew 4:8,9 after taking Christ to a high mountain
and showing Him the world, Satan offers to bless Christ by giving Him the
entire world if Christ wilt only worship
him. "All these things will I give thee, if thou wilt fall down and
worship me." Satan implies that by the act of obeying and worshipping him
(Satan), Christ won't have to go through a cruel death on the cross in order to
save the world, Satan will give Him the
world. Satan demonstrates patience
and apparent kindness foratime,
but after his offer is spurned, the time comes when, with terrifying vengeance
he instigates men to kill Christ by the most vicious and cruel methods known to
Wright, F.T. Behold Your God.Pathway
Publishers, Clarksville, AR
The Bible contains two groups of texts. One group
appears to say that only a small group of people will be saved and the majority
of all those who have ever lived will be permanently lost. Another group of
texts, equal in number, appears to say that everyone will be saved.
The Lord has "a little flock" Luke 12:32
"Many are called, but few are chosen" Matt , Matt
3) "strait is the gate and narrow is the way that
leadeth unto life and few there be that find it" Matt
"Many shall seek to enter in and shall not be able" Luke
that believeth on the Son hath everlastinglife, he that believeth not on the
Son shall not see life, but the wrath of God abideth on him" John 3:36
(The word "everlasting"
that frequently appears in the English translations of the Bible, is a
mistranslation of the word "eonian."The words "everlasting life" should actually read - -"eonianlife.")
For information on "The Eons" as discussed in
the Bible, see www.goodnewsaboutgod.com.
"the wicked shall go away into everlastingpunishment" Matt 25:46
(Again, the direct English translation from the Greek,
should be "eonianchastening"-NOT "everlasting
direct translation from the original Greek is: "theresurrectionofjudging.")
"where their worm dieth not, and the fire is not quenched" Mark
10) "every word against the Son of Man may be
forgiven but the sin against the Holy Ghost shall not be forgiven, neither in this world, nor in the world to
(The Original Greek says: "neitherinthiseon,norintheeontocome." An eon is
a period of time, not eternity. The Bible speaks of TWO MORE eons after the
present eon that we are living in. Therefore, forgiveness, though not available
in the next eon, because all the wicked will be dead, will STILL be available
in the final eon, when the wicked will be resurrected. This means that there is
1) Paul declares that while some are "saved"
by the gospel, others "perish" 2Cor2:15
Lord Jesus shall be revealed, in flaming fire taking vengeance on them that know not God, and obey not the gospel of our
Lord Jesus Christ, who shall be punished with everlastingdestruction
from the presence of the Lord, and from the glory of His power, when He shall
come to be glorified in His saints, and to be admired in all them that believe
in that day." 2 Thess. 1:8-10
(The Greek word translated "vengeance" is just as accurately translate "vindication." It does NOT
necessarily mean "punishment.""Everlastingdestruction" is actually "eonianruin" in the original Greek. Remember that an "eon"
is a limited period of time, NOT eternity!)
3) "If we sin willfully after that we have received
the knowledge of the truth, there re-maineth no more sacrifice for sins, but a
certain fearful looking for of judgement and fiery indignation, which shall
devour the adversaries" Heb 10:26,27
"it is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God" Heb
"our God is a consuming fire" Heb 12:29
6) Peter says that "judgement must begin at the
house of God, and if it first begin at us, what shall the end be of them that
obey not the gospel of God; for if the righteous scarcely be saved, where shall
the ungodly and the sinner appear?" 1 Pet. 4:17,18
7) "false teachers" who "deny the Lord
that bought them" "shall bring upon themselves swift
destruction" and, like the cities of Sodom and Gomorrha,
"shall utterly perish in their own corruption." 2 Peter 2:1,3,6,12
8) "the fearful, and unbelieving, and murderers,
and whoremongers, and sorcerers, idolaters, and all liars, shall have their
place in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone, which is the second
death" Rev 21:8
who worship the beast, and his image, shall drink of the wine of the wrath of God,
and shall be tormented with fire and brimstone in the presence of the holy
angels and the presence of the Lamb, and they have no rest day nor night, and
the smoke of their torment ascendeth up foreverand ever." Rev 14:9, 10. ( In
Greek: "fortheeonsoftheeons." A specific and limited period of time.)
THE OTHER SIDE:
These texts appear to say that EVERYONE will be
READ THEM CAREFULLY!!!
Abraham's seed ALL the kindreds of
the earth shall be blessed." Gen 12:3, Gen , Acts , Gal 3:8
2) there shall
be "a restitution of ALL
things" "God hath spoken of this by the mouth of all His holy
prophets since the world began."Acts
declares this wondrous "mystery of God's WILL, that Hehathpurposed in Himself, according to His good pleasure, to rehead and RECONCILE unto Himself, in
and by Christ,
ALLthings, whether they be things inheaven (that is the spirit-world where
the conflict with Satan yet is - Rev 12:7) "or things onearth", (where
death now reigns.) Eph 1:9,10, Col 1:20
creation, which now groans, shallbedelivered from the bondage of corruption into glorious liberty of
the children of God" Rom 8:19-23.
"God was in Christ reconcilingTHEWORLD unto Himself" 2 Cor. 5:19
6) "Therefore as by the offense of one, or by one
offense, judgment came on ALL to condemnation, even so by the righteousness of
One, or by one righteousness, the freegiftshouldcomeonALL
unto justification of life" while" they which receive abundance of
grace, and of the gift of righteousness, shall reign in life by one, Jesus
Christ" Rom 5:17,18.
7) "As in Adam ALL die, even so in Christ shall ALL be made alive (vivified)" 1 Cor.
8) "the end" shall not come,
"till ALL are subject to Him", that "God may be", not all
in some, but "ALLinALL;
for He must reign till He hath put ALL
enemies under His feet: the last enemy that shall be destroyed is death" 1
9) "that in the dispensation of the fullness of
times He might gather together in one ALLthings in Christ, both which are in
heaven and which are in earth, even in Him." Eph 1:3-10
10) "that at the name of Jesus, (that is Saviour)
EVERY knee shall bow, of things in heaven, and things on earth, and things under
the earth; and that every tongue shall confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, TO
THE GLORYOFGODTHE FATHER." Phil 2:10,11(It doesn't bring "glory to God",
if this is a forced, superficial acknowledgement that God's way is right.)
11) "for this sake he suffers reproach, because he
hopes in the living God, who is theSaviourofALLmen(mankind),SPECIALLYOFTHOSEWHOBELIEVE." 1 Tim ("Believe"
is the same word as "faith," meaning those who believe without
12) God "WILL have ALLmentobesaved,andtocometotheknowledgeofthetruth"thattherefore"thanksgivingsaswellasprayers should be made for ALL," because there is "a
ransom for ALL, to be testified in due time." 1 Tim 2:1-6 (If it is God's
WILL that ALL men be saved, is our "will" stronger than God's will?)
13) "the Father sent the Son to be the Saviouroftheworld" 1 John (Remember, you CAN'T be someone's
Saviour, unless you actually SAVE him!)
14) "for God sent not His Son into the world to
condemn the world, but that the WORLD
through Him MIGHT BE SAVED." John 3:17
15) the Only-Begotten Son "is the propitiation, not
for our sins only, but also for the sins of the WHOLE WORLD" 1 John 2:2
16) "the Lamb of God, which takethaway the sin of THEWORLD" John (He doesn't
"offer" to take away the sin, nor does He take away "some of the
sin" from "some" people in the world.)
17) "was revealed for this very purpose, that He
might DESTROY THE WORKSOFTHE DEVIL" 1 John 3:8 (God
created human beings, Satan didn't. When the "works of the devil" are
destroyed, that means the SIN, NOT the sinner.)
18) "there shall be no more death, nor sorrow, nor
pain, because ALLTHINGS are made new, and the former
things are passed away." Rev 21:4,5
"the Father loveth the Son, and hath given ALLTHINGS into His
hand" (John 3:35) and Jesus declares "All that the Father giveth me
shall come to me and him that cometh tome I will in no wise cast out.... And
this is the Father WILL, which hath sent me, that of ALL which He hath given me
ISHOULDLOSENOTHING, but should raise it up again
at the last day."John 6:37-39
I, if I be lifted up from the earth, will draw ALL unto me" John
How can we interpret this apparent contradiction, —
"few finding the way of life", and yet "in Christ shall all be
God's elect is "a little flock", and yet
"ALL the kindred of the
earth blessed in Abraham's seed"?
destruction'' and yet "restitution of ALLthings"?
answer is, that these opposing words only mean that some are saved and some are
lost forever; that the saved are the elect of this and previous periods of
time, who as compared with the world have been just a little flock;
Christ shall all be made alive" only means that all who are HERE in Christ
shall be made alive; that the Lamb of God, though willing to be, is not really
the Saviour of theworld.He only appears to be. It is presumed that
Christ is the Saviour of ONLYsomeofthepeople in the world.
That instead of taking away the sin of the WORLD, Jesus
only takes away the sin of some of the people in the world.
This is the accepted teaching of the Christian World:
this is orthodox theological solution of the mystery, we are told.
BUT: In asserting
one side of Scripture (that some will be saved, but the majority will be lost),
one is obliged, not only to ignore and deny the other side (the more than 20 texts
that say that ALL will be saved), but to represent God in a character
absolutely the opposite to that in which the gospel portrays Him.
What this says is that if evil is allowed to have equal
time with good, then evil will triumph over all that God can do to meet and
this the Glad Tidings of great joy?
this the glorious gospel of our Creator?
This is NOT good news!
sufficient light found in God's Word to solve this mystery?If so, what is the key to the solution?
The answer to these two seemingly contradictory groups
of texts is found in 1 Cor 15: 22-28. Let's read this passage, then closely
analyze what it says.
Analysis: "For as in Adam ALL die" includes
the ENTIRE human race. "Even so in Christ shall ALL be made alive."
Again this refers to the ENTIRE human race. If not, then why is the
illustration of "in ADAM" given?
Also the Greek word for "alive" here is zoopoieo, #2227 in Strong's Concordance
which comes from the root thatmeanstobemadealiveFOREVER, the Greek
word zoe, #2222 in Strong's
Concordance. This is the form of the word "life" that is ALWAYS used in
the Bible when eternal life is spoken of, such as in Matt , "that I may have eternal
life", Matt , "shall
inherit everlasting life", John "not
perish, but have everlasting life."
When this earthly life is referred to in the Greek, the
word psuche is used, #5590 in Strong's Concordance, which means
"breath." Some illustrations are: Matt "Take no thought for your life," Mark , "whosoever shall lose his life
for my sake, John
Analysis: "But every man in his own order"
means that not everyone will be saved at once. Salvation of the world will
occur in stages (different groups at different times) - just like creation
occurred in stages Group #1: "Christ, the firstfruits" - Jesus was resurrected
- 2000 years ago. Group #2: "afterward they that are Christ's at His coming"
refers to the group that will be saved at the Second coming of Jesus.
"Then cometh the end" - what
"end" does that mean? Does it mean the 2nd coming of Jesus, or after the millennium and the judgement?
Let's read on and we will see that the Bible will give us the answer.
"Then cometh the end when He shall have put down all rule and all
authority and power...and put ALL enemies under His feet," including the enemy
of death! That clearly means the "end " that is spoken of here, is AFTER the millennium and the judgement.
vs.27 For He hath put ALL things under His
feet. But when He saith ALL things are put under Him, it is manifest (evident)
that He (Jesus Christ) is excepted, which did put all things under Him (God).
vs 28: And when all
things shall be subdued unto Him, then shall the Son also Himself be subject
unto Him (God) that put all things under Him, that God may be ALL in ALL. (This is Group #3 and includes EVERYONE who was not included in Groups
#1 and #2.)
Jesus will reign until He has put all enemies under His
feet - including the last enemy to be destroyed - which is DEATH!
Then in verse 28 it says that when ALL things shall be subdued, then even the Son (Jesus) will be
subject unto Him (God) (because we won't need a Saviour anymore) because God
will be ALLinALL! Not ALL in some
- but ALL in All! Everyone will be saved!
However, NO ONE will be saved IN their sins. ALL will be
saved FROM their sins. No one will
make it into the HolyCity without first
having learned to live like Christ. This is called Universal RESTORATION (being
saved FROM your sins), which is vastly different from Universalism (being saved
IN your sins).
During the first five centuries of the Christian era,
Universal Restoration was accepted doctrine. Early church leaders including
Clement of Alexandria, Origen, the Gregorian, Basil the Great, all taught the
doctrine of Universal Restoration - the doctrine that God will save
Everyone!But God will NOT save them IN
their sin, only FROM their sin.
The Pharisees, according to Josephus, regarded the
penalty for sin as torment without end. Jesus on the other hand called the
punishment for sin age-long chastening - a limited time of reaping what one has
The word "eon", often mistranslated eternity
or forever, means a temporary duration precisely as Christ used the word in
these shall go away into eonian (a limited period of time) chastening."
Where did the early Christian church find the concept of
endless punishment? The Old Testament did not contain the doctrine and the New
Testament was not yet in written form. Scholars have concluded that it came
from the Pagan and Jewish religions.
Classic scholars know that the doctrine of endless
punishment was invented to scare and control the multitude. Polybius wrote
"Since the multitude is ever fickle there is no other way to keep them in
order but by fear of the invisible world."
Some in the early Christian era, up until the
4"" century AD, preached the doctrine of eternal punishment, even
though they did not believe it. They dared not entrust the truth to the masses,
and so held it in reserve, to deter men from sin.
The first clear and definite statement of human destiny
by any Christian writer after the days of the apostles, includes Universal
Restoration, and the doctrine was advocated by most of the greatest and best of
the Christian fathers for the first five hundred years of the Christian era.
The LCMS rejects the concept of Universal Restoration,
as stated in the 1932 "Brief Statement" of the Doctrinal Position of
the Missouri Synod, Article 42, page 20.
Bible says that our body is the temple of God, does God
expect us to take proper care of our body? Does that include the way we feed
and maintain our body? Or what we are to eat? Does God promise to heal our
Corinthians ,20 makes very
clear that our body is not our own. It belongs to God:
you not know that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit who is in you, whom
you have from God, andyouarenotyourown;foryouareboughtwithaprice;thereforeglorifyGodinyourbody, and in your spirit which are God's."
Food and water are essential to maintain life. God's
word is clear as to what foods we are to eat. Genesis provides:
And God said, "See, I have given you every herb
that yields seed, which is on the face of all the earth, and every tree whose
fruit yields seed; to you it shall be for food."
two foods described here are grains and fruits.
adds a third
"Both thorn and thistles it shall bring forth to
you, and you shall eat the herb of the field."
three foods, grains, fruits and vegetables, men lived much longer lives than we
currently experience. Indeed, Methuselah lived until the age of 969. His name means
- the great flood - (literally "when he dies, it will be sent") -
which began at his death at the time of Noah.
After the flood, God altered the diet He allowed man to
eat meat , which after several generations resulted in a markedly decreased
life span of 200 years and eventually a current life span of and ten, or 70 years. Today,
people who adhere to a vegan diet live an average of ten years longer than
those who continue to eat flesh food (meat, poultry, fish, dairy and eggs).
The American Medical Association now admits that there
is a correlation between diet and the incidence of cancer in Americans. The
admission was contained in a published report staling that one hundred years
ago, the incidence of cancer in Americans was 1 in 33.In 1985, it was 1 in 3. Today, it is 1 in 2.
A major factor that has produced this huge increase in the incidence of cancer is the current
diet we Americans follow, a diet high in animal products, compared with our
diet 100 years ago, mainly a plant-based diet of fruits, grains and
In the last one hundred years, we Americans have
substantially increased our consumption of meat, chicken and fish and by a
similar margin have significantly decreased our consumption of grains,
vegetables and fruits.
Of interest in the causal relationship between diet and
the incidence of cancer is the fact that during World War II, we Americans
enjoyed one of the healthiest periods in decades. Why? Because sugar and meat
were rationed, and many Americans had a Victory garden where we grew our own
When our body is afflicted with a disease, we Americans
most often choose to ignore that Jesus never sent persons He encountered with a
disease to a doctor, He healed them directly in one of two ways: 1) by speaking
His Word (which we have today - the Bible) or 2) by Natural methods, such as
clay and water.
We need to remember
God's Word in Deuteronomy 7:11-15, which tells us HOW we can be healed:
"Therefore you shall keep the commandments (God's
Ten Commandments), the statutes (including His Ten Natural Health statues or
laws), and the judgments which I command you today, to observe them.
"Then it shall come to pass, becauseyoulistentothesejudgments,andkeepanddothem,thattheLordyourGodwillkeepwithyouthecovenant and the mercy which He swore to your fathers.
"And He will love you and bless you and multiply
you; He will also bless the fruit of your womb and the fruit of your land, your
grain and your new wine and your oil, the increase of your cattle and the
offspring of your flock, in the land of which He swore to your fathers to give
"You shall be blessed above all peoples; there
shall not be a male or female barren among you, or among your livestock.
"AndtheLordwilltakeawayfromyouALLsickness, and will
afflict you with none of the terrible diseases of Egypt which you
have known, but will lay them on all those who hate you."
recall ever hearing a sermon or a discussion in a Bible class in the years I
have attended church, mostly in the LCMS, where God's health plan as set forth in
Genesis and God's promise to heal our disease was discussed and explained.
Considering the incidence of disease in America and the huge
quantity of American people who have a weight problem, it certainly would be
appropriate for our Seminaries in the LCMS to consider the issue as a part of
the training of Pastors. Where the Bible speaks with clarity on an issue as
important to human beings as health, it is most appropriate to be addressed
from the pulpit.