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The Covenants of the LORD stand forever

“Thus says the Lord: ‘If My covenant is not with day and night, and if I have not appointed the ordinances of heaven and earth, then I will cast away the descendants of Jacob and David My servant, so that I will not take any of his descendants to be rulers over the descendants of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. For I will cause their captives to return, and will have mercy on them.’ ”

The Lord's covenants are as firm as the laws of nature - God will neither abandon them nor forget them - His Chosen people Israel will return to the Land. However, Israel must acknowledge her God, and accept Yeshua as the Son of God, the Messiah.

Jeremiah 33:25

17 Feb 2019

 

Hell's Best Kept Secret by Ray Comfort

This message should be heard by anyone who wants to preach the gospel, or even just talk to their neighbour about Christ - it highlights why evangelism fails - the failure to explain the consquence of sin, which means explaining they are a sinner. The complete message can be heard or read at: https://www.livingwaters.com/hells-best-kept-secret/. The following is a short extract from the sermon.

...

The Motive and the Result

Two men are seated in a plane. The first is given a parachute and told to put it on as it would improve his flight. He’s a little skeptical at first because he can’t see how wearing a parachute in a plane could possibly improve a flight. After a time he decides to experiment and see if the claim is true. As he puts it on he notices the weight of it upon his shoulders and he finds that he has difficulty in sitting upright. However, he consoles himself with the fact that he was told the parachute would improve the flight, so he decides to give the thing a little time. As he waits he notices that some of the other passengers are laughing at him because he’s wearing a parachute in a plane. He begins to feel somewhat humiliated. As they begin to point and laugh at him, he can stand it no longer. He slinks in his seat, unstraps the parachute, and throws it to the floor. Disillusionment and bitterness fill his heart, because, as far as he was concerned, he was told an outright lie.

The second man is given a parachute, but he’s told to put it on because at any moment he’d be jumping 25,000 feet out of the plane. He gratefully puts the parachute on; he doesn’t notice the weight of it upon his shoulders, nor that he can’t sit upright. His mind is consumed with the thought of what would happen to him if he jumped without that parachute.

Let’s analyze the motive and the result of each passenger’s experience. The first man’s motive for putting the parachute on was solely to improve his flight. The result of his experience was that he was humiliated by the passengers; he was disillusioned and somewhat embittered against those who gave him the parachute. As far as he’s concerned it’ll be a long time before anyone gets one of those things on his back again. The second man put the parachute on solely to escape the jump to come, and because of his knowledge of what would happen to him without it, he has a deep-rooted joy and peace in his heart knowing that he’s saved from sure death. This knowledge gives him the ability to withstand the mockery of the other passengers. His attitude toward those who gave him the parachute is one of heart-felt gratitude.

Now consider what the modern gospel says. It says, “Put on the Lord Jesus Christ. He’ll give you love, joy, peace, fulfillment, and lasting happiness.” In other words, “Jesus will improve your flight.” So the sinner responds, and in an experimental fashion, puts on the Saviour to see if the claims are true. And what does he get? The promised temptation, tribulation, and persecution. The other passengers mock him. So what does he do? He takes off the Lord Jesus Christ, he’s offended for the word’s sake (Mark 4:17), he’s disillusioned and somewhat embittered, and quite rightly so. He was promised peace, joy, love, fulfillment, and lasting happiness, and all he got were trials and humiliation. His bitterness is directed toward those who gave him the so-called “good news.” His latter end becomes worse than the first—another inoculated and bitter backslider.

“Instead of preaching that Jesus improves the flight, we should be warning the passengers they’re going to have to jump out of the plane.”

Instead of preaching that Jesus improves the flight, we should be warning the passengers they’re going to have to jump out of the plane, that it’s “appointed unto man once to die, but after this the judgment” (Hebrews 9:27). And when a sinner understands the horrific consequences of breaking God’s Law, then he will flee to the Savior solely to escape the wrath that’s to come. And if we’re true and faithful witnesses, that’s what we’ll be preaching: that there is wrath to come. That God “commands all men everywhere to repent” (Acts 17:30). Why? “Because He has appointed a day, in which He will judge the world in righteousness” (verse 31).

You see, the issue isn’t one of happiness, but one of righteousness. It doesn’t matter how happy a sinner is, how much he’s enjoying “the pleasures of sin for a season” (Hebrews 11:25). Without the righteousness of Christ, he’ll perish on the day of wrath. “Riches profit not on the day of wrath, but righteousness delivers from death” (Proverbs 11:4). Peace and joy are legitimate fruits of salvation, but it’s not legitimate to use these fruits as a drawing card for salvation. If we continue to do so, sinners will respond with an impure motive lacking repentance.

“Peace and joy are legitimate fruits of salvation, but it’s not legitimate to use these fruits as a drawing card for salvation.”

Now, can you remember why the second passenger had joy and peace in his heart? It was because he knew that parachute was going to save him from sure death. And as a believer, I have, as Paul says, “joy and peace in believing” (Romans 15:13), because I know that the righteousness of Christ is going to deliver me from the wrath that’s to come.

With that thought in mind, let’s take a close look at an incident on board the plane. We have a brand new flight attendant. She’s carrying a tray of boiling hot coffee. It’s her first day; she wants to leave an impression on the passengers, and she certainly does. Because as she’s walking down the aisle, she trips over someone’s foot and slops that boiling hot coffee all over the lap of our second passenger. Now, what’s his reaction as that boiling liquid hits his tender flesh? Does he go, “Ssssfffff! Man that hurt”? Mmm-hmm. He feels the pain. But then does he rip the parachute from his shoulders, throw it to the floor and say, “The stupid parachute!”? No. Why should he? He didn’t put the parachute on for a better flight. He put it on to save him from the jump to come. If anything, the hot coffee incident causes him to cling tighter to the parachute and even look forward to the jump.

Now if you and I have put on the Lord Jesus Christ for the right motive—to flee from the wrath that’s to come—when tribulation strikes, when the flight gets bumpy, we won’t get angry at God; we won’t lose our joy and peace. Why should we? We didn’t come to Jesus for a happy lifestyle; we came to flee from the wrath that’s to come. And if anything, tribulation drives the true believer closer to the Savior. And sadly, we have literally multitudes of professing Christians who lose their joy and peace when the flight gets bumpy. Why? They’re the product of a man-centered gospel. They came lacking repentance, without which you cannot be saved.

... and much more

The transcript of this sermon is on the web page:Pdf document

Ray Comfort https://www.livingwaters.com/hells-best-kept-secret/ Hell's Best Secret
Updated: 06 Jan 2019

 

O Love that Wilt Not Let Me Go

O Love that wilt not let me go,
I rest my weary soul in thee;
I give thee back the life I owe,
that in thine ocean depths
its flow may richer, fuller be.

O Light that followest all my way,
I yield my flickering torch to thee;
my heart restores its borrowed ray,
that in thy sunshine's blaze
its day may brighter, fairer be.

O Joy that seekest me through pain,
I cannot close my heart to thee;
I trace the rainbow thru the rain,
and feel the promise is not vain,
that morn shall tearless be.

O Cross that liftest up my head,
I dare not ask to fly from thee;
I lay in dust life's glory dead,
and from the ground there blossoms
red life that shall endless be.

George Matheson (1842-1906)
Updated: 06 Jan 2019

 

Pride must be dealt with!

Samuel Rutherford writes..

Dear Sir, I always saw nature mighty, lofty, heady and strong in you; and that it was more for you to be mortified and dead to the world than for another common man. You will take a low ebb, and a deep cut, and a long lance, to go to the bottom of your wounds in saving humiliation, to make you a won prey for Christ.  Be humbled; walk softly. Down, down, for God’s sake, my dear and worthy brother, with your topsail.  Stoop, stoop! it is a low entry to go in at heaven’s gate.

Samuel Rutherford
Updated: 06 Jan 2019

 

Christmastime - Stop being busy and hear the truth!

I have a message of LIFE! Do you care to hear it? Stop! Don't fling it away; you may never have another. Pause a moment!

"I can't today; I have no time for these things."

Indeed, why?

"But we must live, and I want to be free to enjoy myself at Christmas-time."

Indeed? What do you mean by "Christmastime"?

"Oh, Christmas is the time of the year when they say Christ was born, and we all try to be very merry at that time."

Quite so; and may I ask, Where is Christ now? Is He still here?

"No, certainly not; He died."

How did He die? I thought He was the Lord of Life.

"Well, to tell the truth, He was killed — men put Him on a cross, and there He died, between two thieves."

Then, in plain language, men murdered Him?

"Yes; I suppose it amounts to this."

Well, then, is it not a serious thing to be holiday-making in connection with this murdered man? Most surely. Nothing could be more solemn.

But I have a message from God to you about this rejected One. He is alive. The men the world prizes and does homage to are dead and buried. The only man God counts worthy of honour and glory is alive in heaven. His message to you today is about Him, the blessed Son of His love, the Lord Jesus Christ. He. was dead once, for Him men "slew and hanged on a tree" (Acts 5:30), "but God raised Him from the dead" (Acts 13:30). Of Him, Paul spake in ancient Athens, "wholly given to idolatry," and seemed "a setter forth of strange gods: because he preached to them Jesus, and the resurrection" (Acts 17:18). He could say, and, sinner, you must remember, that then, "ignorance God winked at; but NOW commands all men everywhere to repent; because He has appointed a day in the which He will judge the world in righteousness, by that Man whom He has ordained; whereof He has given assurance to all men, in that He has raised Him from the dead" (Acts 17:30, 31).

Friend, have you repented? Have you ever yet truly bowed to the name of Jesus? Not yet? Then do not delay. God's APPOINTED DAY draws near — how near you know not. Suppose IT dawned today. What a terrible state you would be in! Unrepentant, unforgiven, unprepared, uncleansed, Christless, LOST! O, dear soul, do not "mock" or say, like some in old Athens, "we will hear thee again of this matter" (Acts 17:32). The mockers and the halters of that day were alike left to their own vanity and unbelief; for "Paul departed from among them" (Acts 17:33), and you, if you halt, or hesitate to receive the Lord Jesus as your Saviour, can count on nothing but this coming judgment; for He said, "If ye believe not that I am He, ye shall die in your sins" (John 8:24), and, Scripture adds, "after this the judgment," saying, "and as it is appointed to men once to die, but after this the judgment; so Christ was once offered to bear the sins of many; and to them that look for Him shall He appear the second time without sin to salvation" (Heb. 9:27, 28).

Your portion is "death" and "judgment." "It is appointed to men." Do you fear these two terrible consequences of sin? I have good news, "a message from God to thee" — a message of grace. So Christ was once offered to bear the sins of many." "Christ also has once suffered for sins, the just for the unjust, that he might bring us to God" (1 Peter 3:18). God thus opens a door of escape for thee, dear soul, whoever thou art. None are too vile, or too far off, for Christ's precious blood to meet. It cleanses from all sin. He is alive. "He is risen" (Matt. 28:6). "Christ died for our sins, according to the Scriptures" (1 Cor. 15:3), and "was raised again for our justification" (Rom. 4:25). His resurrection is the clear proof of the value of His blood, which was shed in atonement for sins. "Raised up from the dead," "alive," "glorified," He sits at God's right hand, the exalted Christ and Lord. All things are His. All must soon own Him — every knee bow to, and every tongue confess Him. Do not wait for dire and awful, yea eternal judgment, to force from your lips a confession of His worth. Bow to Him now. Believe Him now, and the "salvation of God" is yours. To delay even for a day is folly, and may cause your eternal ruin. Procrastination is the thief of souls, as well as of time. Besides, this Lord may return. "Behold, the Bridegroom comes; go ye out to meet Him" (Matt. 25:6).

Do you say, "Where is the promise of His coming?" I reply, in God's everlasting word, which further adds, "The day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night!" (2 Peter 3:4.) Can you meet Him? Dare you, then, face Him as you now are, in your sins? No, sinner! no thou canst not. Turn, then, to Jesus, now. Yes, this very day. "Now is the day of salvation" (2 Cor. 6:2). "Hear, and your soul shall live." The Lord Jesus said, "Verily, verily, I say to you, he that hears my word, and believes on Him that sent me, has everlasting life, and shall not come into condemnation; but is passed from death to life. Verily, verily, I say to you, the hour is coming, and now is, when the dead shall hear the voice of the Son of God, and they that hear shall live" (John 5:24, 25).

What a blessed thing it would be if you were at once to come to Him. If you have reached so near the end of the year without His blessing, oh, I beseech you, do not let it close and leave you still unsaved. Let the closing hours of 1877 find you fully decided for Jesus. You have nothing to do but simply to trust Him. God bless thee, my dear reader! "Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved," and for eternity thou wilt remember with joy this.

W P T Wolston Extracted from "From the Far Country to the Father's House": "I Have a Message from God to Thee."
Updated: 24 Dec 2018

 

Don't make the Bible say what it does not!

Reading the Bible

  • Cleave to the literal sense of Bible words, and beware of departing from it, except in cases of absolute necessity.
  • Beware of the system of allegorizing and spiritualizing, and accommodating, which the school of Origen first brought in, and which has found such an unfortunate degree of favour in the Church.
  • In reading the authorized version of the English Bible, do not put too much confidence in the “headings” of pages and “tables of contents” at beginnings of chapters, which I take leave to consider a most unhappy accompaniment of that admirable translation. Remember that those headings and tables were drawn up by uninspired hands.
  • In reading the Prophets, they are sometimes not helps but real hindrances, and less likely to assist a reader, than to lead him astray. Settle it in your mind, in reading the Psalms and Prophets that Israel means Israel*, and Zion Zion, and Jerusalem Jerusalem.
  • And, finally, whatever edification you derive from applying to your own soul the words which God addresses to His ancient people, never lose sight of the primary sense of the text.[1]

Further words on reading prophecy

It is high time for Christians to interpret unfulfilled prophecy by the light of prophecies already fulfilled.  The curses of the Jews were brought to pass literally; so also will be the blessings.  The scattering was literal; so also will be the gathering.  The pulling down of Zion was literal; so also will be the building up.  The rejection of Israel was literal; so also will be the restoration. [2]

What I protest against is, the habit of allegorizing plain sayings of the Word of God concerning the future history of the nation of Israel, and explaining away the fullness of the contents in order to accommodate them to the Gentile Church. I believe the habit to be unwarranted by anything in Scripture, and to draw after it a long train of evil consequences.[3]

Cultivate the habit of reading prophecy with a single eye to the literal meaning of its proper names.  Cast aside the old traditional idea that Jacob, and Israel, and Judah, and Jerusalem, and Zion must always mean the Gentile Church, and that predictions about the second Advent are to be taken spiritually, and first Advent predictions literally. Be just, and honest, and fair.  If you expect the Jews to take the 53rd of Isaiah literally, be sure you take the 54th and 60th and 62nd literally also.  The Protestant Reformers were not perfect.  On no point, I venture to say, were they so much in the wrong as in the interpretation of Old Testament prophecy. [4]

 

* My emphases

[1] J.C. Ryle, Prophecy 149

[2] J.C. Ryle, Are You Ready For The End Of Time? p. 49

[3] ibid., p. 107-108.

[4]  . 157-159.

J C Ryle (1816 - 1900) [Various sources]
Updated: 27 Nov 2018

 

The Privilege of Preaching – thoughts from Martyn Lloyd-Jones

Preach the word

At this point there is one golden rule, one absolute demand–honesty. You have got to be honest with your text. I mean by that, that you do not go to a text just to pick out an idea which interests you and then deal with that idea yourself. That is to be dishonest with the text.

Lloyd-Jones, Preaching and Preachers, 199.

You would have thought these men [Pharisees] therefore were now in a perfect position to go out to preach; but according to our Lord’s teaching they were not. They seem to have all the necessary knowledge, but that knowledge is not sufficient, something further is needed, is indeed essential. The knowledge indeed is vital for you cannot be witnesses without it, but to be effective witnesses you need the power and the unction and the demonstration of the Spirit in addition. Now if this was necessary for these men, how much more is it necessary for all others who try to preach these things?

Lloyd-Jones, Preaching and Preachers, 307–308.

Assume the listeners are unsaved

For many years I thought I was a Christian when in fact I was not. It was only later that I came to see that I had never been a Christian and became one. . . .What I needed was preaching that would convict me of sin. . . .But I never heard this. The preaching we had was always based on the assumption that we were all Christians.

Iain H. Murray, D. Martyn Lloyd-Jones: The First Forty Years, 1899–1939 (Carlisle, PA: Banner of Truth, 1982), 58.

In the beginning, the preacher’s business is not to convert men, but the very reverse. It is idle to attempt to heal those who are not wounded, to attempt to clothe those who have never been stripped, and to make those rich who have never realized their poverty. As long as the world stands, we shall need the Holy Ghost, not only as the Comforter, but also as the Convincer, who will ‘reprove the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment.

C.H. Spurgeon speaking in 1883 quoted by Iain H. Murray, The Life of Martyn Lloyd-Jones 1899–1981, 129.

Preach the gospel

The Church has been trying to preach morality and ethics without the Gospel as a basis; it has been preaching morality without godliness; and it simply does not work. It never has done, and it never will. And the result is that the Church, having abandoned her real task, has left humanity more or less to its own devices.

D. Martyn Lloyd-Jones, Preaching and Preachers

Salvation does not begin with a person deciding for Christ![The] term ‘decide’ has always seemed to me to be quite wrong…A sinner does not ‘decide’ for Christ; the sinner ‘flies’ to Christ in utter helplessness and despair saying —
    Foul, I to the fountain fly,
    Wash me, Saviour, or I die.
No man truly comes to Christ unless he flies to Him as his only refuge and hope, his only way of escape from the accusations of conscience and the condemnation of God’s holy law. Nothing else is satisfactory. If a man says that having thought about the matter and having considered all sides he has on the whole decided for Christ, and if he has done so without any emotion or feeling, I cannot regard him as a man who has been regenerated. The convicted sinner no more ‘decides’ for Christ than the poor drowning man ‘decides’ to take hold of that rope that is thrown to him and suddenly provides him with the only means of escape. The term is entirely inappropriate.

Martyn Lloyd-Jones, Preaching and Preachers

Give a defence of your faith

In Jude 3, we read, ‘Beloved, when I gave all diligence to write unto you of the common salvation, it was needful for me to write unto you, and exhort you that ye should earnestly contend for the faith which was once delivered unto the saints.’  Here we are given a stirring call to the defence of the Faith.  Such a call is not popular today.  It is not popular today even in some evangelical circles.  People will tell you that it is all ‘too negative.’  They continually urge that we must keep on giving positive truth.  They will tell us that we must not argue and we must never condemn.  But we must ask, ‘How can you fight if you are ever afraid of wounding an enemy?’  ‘How can you rouse sleeping fellow-warriors with smooth words?’  God forbid that we find ourselves at the bar of judgment and face the charge that we contracted out from love of ease, or for fear of man, or that we failed to do our duty in the great fight of the Faith.  We must — we must fight for the faith in these momentous times.

Quoted by Iain Murray, The Life of Martyn Lloyd-Jones, 332

David L Simon
Updated: 20 Nov 2018

 

The Parable of the Ten Minas (Pounds)

Luke 19:11-28 NKJV;

Now as they heard these things, He spoke another parable, because He was near Jerusalem and because they thought the kingdom of God would appear immediately.  (12)  Therefore He said: "A certain nobleman went into a far country to receive for himself a kingdom and to return.  (13)  So he called ten of his servants, delivered to them ten minas [pounds] said to them, 'Do business till I come.'  (14)  But his citizens hated him, and sent a delegation after him, saying, 'We will not have this man to reign over us.'  (15)  "And so it was that when he returned, having received the kingdom, he then commanded these servants, to whom he had given the money, to be called to him, that he might know how much every man had gained by trading.  (16)  Then came the first, saying, 'Master, your mina has earned ten minas.'  (17)  And he said to him, 'Well done, good servant; because you were faithful in a very little, have authority over ten cities.'  (18)  And the second came, saying, 'Master, your mina has earned five minas.'  (19)  Likewise he said to him, 'You also be over five cities.'  (20)  "Then another came, saying, 'Master, here is your mina, which I have kept put away in a handkerchief.  (21)  For I feared you, because you are an austere man. You collect what you did not deposit, and reap what you did not sow.'  (22)  And he said to him, 'Out of your own mouth I will judge you, you wicked servant. You knew that I was an austere man, collecting what I did not deposit and reaping what I did not sow.  (23)  Why then did you not put my money in the bank, that at my coming I might have collected it with interest?'  (24)  "And he said to those who stood by, 'Take the mina from him, and give it to him who has ten minas.'  (25)  (But they said to him, 'Master, he has ten minas.')  (26)  'For I say to you, that to everyone who has will be given; and from him who does not have, even what he has will be taken away from him.  (27)  But bring here those enemies of mine, who did not want me to reign over them, and slay them before me.' "
 (Luke 19:11-28 NKJV )

 

The Jews were all wrong in looking for the kingdom of God immediately to appear. Christ was going away to heaven to receive the kingdom from God there — not about to take it from man now and in this world. It is evidently, therefore, this parable is a picture of the Lord's return at the second advent, after having received a kingdom. It was not a question of human willingness or power, but of receiving from God. But then, further, He shows that meanwhile His servants are called to occupy themselves till he come.

He called His ten servants, and delivered to them ten pounds; and said unto them, "Occupy till I come." Then we find another picture — His citizens hating Him; for nothing can be more elaborate than this parable. The Lord's relation to the kingdom at the second advent is contrasted with the grace that flows out in the former part of the chapter. This is the main subject with which the parable opens. Next, we have the place of the servants responsible to use what the Lord gives. Such is another great point shown out here. It is not, as in the Gospel of Matthew, the Lord giving different gifts to different servants, which is equally true; but here it is the moral test of the servants carried out by each having the same sum. This proves yet more than in the other case how far they laboured. They started with similar advantages.

What was the result? Meanwhile hatred became apparent in the citizens, who represent the unbelieving Jews settled down in the earth. "And so it was that when he returned, having received the kingdom, he then commanded these servants, to whom he had given the money, to be called to him, that he might know how much every man had gained by trading. Then came the first, saying, 'Master, your mina has earned ten minas.'” and so with the other; and then we hear of the one who says, "'Master, here is your mina, which I have kept put away in a handkerchief. ‘” There was no confidence in His grace. The consequence is, that, treating the Lord as a severe man, he finds Him severe. Unbelief finds its own response as truly as faith does. As "it is unto you according to your faith," so alas! The converse proves true. It is to man according to his unbelief – and thence his reward.

Further, we have a remarkable difference in the rewards here. It is not, "Enter into the joy of thy Lord;" but one receives ten cities, another five, and so on. He that was fearful and unbelieving, on the contrary, has his mina taken from him. Again, then enemies are brought forward. The unfaithful servant is not called an enemy, though, no doubt, he was no friend of the Son, and dealt with righteously. But the open adversaries are called into the scene; and as the Lord here pronounces those men His enemies which would not: that He should reign over them, He says, "bring them here and slaughter them before me”.

Thus the parable is a very complete sketch of the general results of the Lord's second advent for the citizens of the world, as well as of the occupation and reward of the servants who serve Him faithfully meanwhile. (Verses 11-27.)

William Kelly

Luke - Introductory

Introductory Lectures on the Gospel of Luke

William Kelly An Introduction to Luke
Updated: 14 Oct 2018

 

The Rapture of the Church compared with the Second Coming of Christ

Much confusion arises from miss-understanding the elements of the rapture and the appearing of Christ. The only commonality is that Christ is the centre of the action – coming in both instances.

 

The Rapture The appearing of Christ
Comes for His saints: John 14:2-2 Comes with His saints: Jude 13, Zec 14:5
Takes place at any moment and is imminent: Matt 24:36 Proceeded by the tribulation and thus will not be imminent for those that understand the prophecies of Daniel chapter 9: Revelation 4-19
The tribulation begins after the rapture, when the Antichrist dupes the world and makes a covenant with the nation of Israel (Dan 9:27) The second coming commences the Messianic Kingdom that lasts a 1000 years (The Millennial Kingdom) (Luke 1:32-33)
Is a mystery: 1 Cor 15:51 Prophetic and well known: e.g. Numbers 24:17, 1 Chron. 5:2
Takes place secretly, in the twinkling of an eye: 1 Cor 15:52 Is public – every eye shall see Him: Rev 1:7
Concerns the Church only: 1 Thes 1:10 Concerns Israel, although the consequence concerns all nations: Ps 6:1-4
Comes in the air – the saints rise up to meet Him – the Messiah does not reach the earth: 1 Thes 4:16-17 Places His feet on Mt Zion at the Mount of Olives: Zech 14:4-5
Preluded by the archangel sounding a trumpet: 1 Thes 4:16 Christ as Messiah will come in glory and with all his angels: Matt 25:31.
The saints are gathered to himself:
1 Thes 4:17,18, 2 Thes 2:1
Angels are sent to gather the elect of Israel: Matt 24:30-31, 25:41
Believers taken out of the world: John 14:2,3 The wicked are taken out of this world: Matt 13:41-43
He comes to deliver the Church from the wrath to come: 1 Thes 1:10 He comes to deliver His wrath: Rev 19:11-16
No divine judgement occurs with this event Ends divine judgement of Israel, the nations and Satan, who is tied up for 1000 years (Rev: 6-19)
Comes for his bride – the Church: John 14:1-2, 1 Thess 4:16-17 Comes with his saints: Rev 19:14
He comes as the Bridegroom, to receive His bride, the Church: Matt 25:6, 10 Comes as the Son of Man in judgement upon those that reject Him: Matt 24:27-28
Comes pre tribulation Comes at the end of the tribulation: Rev 19:11-16
Comes as the “Morning Star”: Rev 22:16 Comes as the “Sun of Righteousness”:
Malachi 4:2
Comes without signs – believers do not need signs: John 6:30-35, 2 Cor 5:7 Comes in signs and wonders:
Luke 21:10,11,25-27
Is not the thief in the night – believers are watching and waiting: 1 Thes 5:2, 2 Pet 3:10, Matt 24:43, Rev 16:15, Rev 3:3 Comes as a thief in the night – no-one is watching and waiting: 1 Thes 5:2, 2 Pet 3:10, Matt 24:43, Rev 16:15
Is not mentioned in the Old Testament as the Church was not revealed until New Testament times: Eph 3:3 Is mentioned in both Testaments: e.g. Jude 14
Church believers will be evaluated, rewarded and married to the Bridegroom, the Christ, following the rapture: 1 Cor 3:11-15, Rev 19:7-9 The nations are judged following the tribulation and 1000 year reign of Christ: Ezek 20:34, Matt 25:32. The judgement at the great white throne takes places – people whose name are not in Book of Life are cast into hell, Satan is cast hell: Rev 20:11-15

 

David L Simon
Edited 23 September 2018

David L Simon
Updated: 23 Sep 2018

 

Never

The use of the word in a few places of Scripture

The Greek language employs at times a double negative[1], greatly intensifying the force of the expression used; and when the matter asserted involves a question of duration, the addition of a phrase significant of eternity takes away from such duration all limit whatever.[2]

There are some six places in the New Testament where we get the negative with a term of eternity attached, in five of which the negative is doubled. The places are Mark 3:29; John 4:14; 8:51; 10:28; 11:26; 13:8. Passing by the last of these, we may look at the other five; and we shall, I believe, be led thereby to adore afresh the gracious Spirit who wrote these things for our learning, that we, through patience and comfort of the Scriptures, might have hope.

John 4:14 says, "Whoever drinks of the water that I shall give him will never (οὐ μὴ) thirst.” One might perhaps show the exact force of the expression used thus - "shall not, no, he shall not thirst for ever." The drinking and the fresh, full satisfaction from the ceaseless, boundless supply continue for ever and ever.

John 8:51 has it, "If a man keep My word, he shall never (οὐ μὴ) see death" - "he shall not, no, he shall not see death for ever." Such is the power of the word of Christ received, retained, and observed; it conveys to the receiver, and effects in him its own object, with vigour which even eternity does not diminish. "The words which I speak unto you," says the Lord, "they are spirit and they are life." Whosoever has been laid hold of by them must, through their operation within him, have life co-existent with the words by which he has been laid hold. They impart to him their own character.

In John 10:28 we have, "And I give them eternal life, and they shall never (οὐ μὴ) perish", thus "they shall not, they shall not, perish for ever." The acquisition of eternal life, as given by the Second Man, the quickening Spirit, is accompanied with the complete impossibility of perishing. This is a life which never wanes, never decays. He who imparts it is Himself its source and supply. That which He gives must, alike with that which He speaks, be in correspondence with Himself. He is the Way, the Truth, and the Life.

So once more in John 11:26, "Everyone who lives and believes in Me shall never (οὐ μὴ) die" - "never, never die."

Thus are these words of the Lord Jesus Christ presented to us like His "most assuredly” (verily, verily in the KJV - ἀμὴν ἀμὴν e.g. John 5:24) a duplicated witness, a confirmation with an oath of the acceptance and security of all to whom they refer. "Thanks be to God for His unspeakable gift."

Of course one does not need “no not” for the Holy Spirit to stay “never” – there are other forms of the Greek.[3]

In Mark 3:29 we read, “but he who blasphemes against the Holy Spirit never (οὐκ ἔχει - will not) has forgiveness, but is subject to eternal condemnation". Here we do not have a double negative but rather “not” that denies absolutely and categorically. The attribution to Satan of the works of Christ involved those who made it in eternal sin - sin from the judgment of which there was no escape.

 

Modified from The Christian's Friend (1898): "Never" ANON

References

[1] οὐ (ou – this is the basic Greek particle that represents some form of “no” or “not” in our English translations, as well as a multiple form of combinations that reflect the negative in some form or other.
μη (me) – this is the other Greek particle that represents “no” or “not,” and it too has a variety of forms that it occurs in reflecting the negative. However, there is a difference in the application of ο? (ou) and µ? (me).
Thayer notes: that οὐ denies the thing itself (or to speak technically, denies simply, absolutely, categorically, directly, objectively), but μη denies the thought of the thing.
http://blogs.blueletterbible.org/blb/2012/05/23/emphatic-negations-in-biblical-greek/ (accessed July 2018).

[2] William Mounce explains that οὐ μὴ (ou me) does not mean ‘never’ in and of itself. However, when you have οὐ μὴ in combination with the aorist subjunctive, it is implied that something cannot ever happen. https://www.billmounce.com/monday-with-mounce/translating-all-the-words-scripture-matt-24-34 (accessed July 2018)
The double negative appears in 80 verses in the New Testament. One which all Christians hold to is: Hebrews 10:17 - "their sins and their lawless deeds I will remember no more" being the essence of the gospel.

[3] In the original article the author implies a οὐ μὴ in Mark 3 when it is not so – however οὐκ can be rendered "no, not". The Greek reads: , οὐκ ἔχει ἄφεσιν εἰς τὸν αἰῶνα (transliterated: never has forgiveness to the eternity [or all time])

David L Simon (January 2016)
Notes\The use of the word Never in the New Testament

David L Simon
Updated: 22 Jul 2018

 

What should the Church be Concerned About?

The concern of the Church is preaching the gospel not changing political, economic or social structures of this world

Don’t get me wrong; each and every Christian must be concerned with the immorality that underpins the political, economic and social structures of our culture, and so called, civilized way-of-life. The abysmal birth control method, that so often arises following some short unthinking pleasure ending in a pregnancy which is terminated by killing the offspring, must be a concern of every Christian. However, as will be stated here the Church has no ability to stop abortions, per se. It does however have the responsibility and ability of bringing the gospel to each individual

How then shall they call on Him in whom they have not believed? And how shall they believe in Him of whom they have not heard? And how shall they hear without a preacher? (Romans 10:14).

It is the Holy Spirit that frees a person from sin and thus immorality because of the work of Jesus Christ on the cross.  And furthermore, without regeneration – which is re-birth – immorality will reign in our bodies (Romans 5:21) – the consequence being the evil we view each day.

Therefore if the Son makes you free, you shall be free indeed. (John 8:36)

But now having been set free from sin, and having become servants of God, you have your fruit to holiness, and the end, everlasting life. (Romans 6:22)

In these verses we see the reality of sin – sin bounds us in a manner that prevents morality – abortion is an unavoidable consequence of a people without God because they are simply in bondage to sin. It is only when the bonds of sin are broken can one contemplate dealing with root cause of say abortion.

The real issue is the failure of the Church to preach the gospel – for without the gospel we cannot expect the consciousness of individuals to be aroused to an extent they seek God, and His purposes. No greater example one can one give than that of William Wilberforce, whose pastor preached the gospel to him week by week, and year by year. Wilberforce was no moralist or social leftist, but rather a man who accepted the Lord Jesus Christ as his Saviour, and when the Holy Spirit provided a clear consciousness of the righteousness of God in relationship to the abject racism and horror associated with slavery he responded. Here we see the Church carrying out its responsibility of preaching the gospel (and providing moral support to the soul), the Holy Spirit giving new life to Wilberforce, setting him free from sin (Romans 6:22, 8:11), and because Wilberforce believed in Christ Jesus (Romans 3) he became a useful vessel for the work of God (Ephesians 2:10). And in this we see the role that God has entrusted him being carried out. This is should be our example.

The mistake the Church makes today is usurping the plan of God, replacing it with some notion that she should, and indeed is able to, change the social, political and economic structure of our civic societies. This is not her role, but that of individual Christians as useful vessels for God’s work (Ephesians 2:10). Martyn Lloyd-Jones, when preaching from Matthew’s Gospel, which speaks about being the salt of the earth, he made the following remark:

The primary task of the Church is to evangelize and to preach the gospel. Look at it like this. If the Christian Church today spends most of her time in denouncing communism, it seems to me that the main result will be that communists will not be likely to listen to the preaching of the gospel. If the Church is always denouncing one particular section of society, she is shutting the evangelistic door upon that section. If we take the New Testament view of these matters we must believe that the communist has a soul to be saved in exactly the same way as everybody else. It is my business as a preacher of the gospel, and a representative of the Church, to evangelize all kinds and conditions and classes of men and women. The moment the Church begins to intervene in these political, social and economic matters, therefore, she is hampering and hindering herself in her God-appointed task of evangelism. She can no longer say that she "knows no man after the flesh", and thereby she is sinning. Let the individual play his part as a citizen, and belong to any political party that he may choose. That is something for the individual to decide. The Church is not concerned as a Church about these things. Our business is to preach the gospel and to bring this message of salvation to all. And, thank God, communists [or any other evil corrupt society, including western society that worships sex, pleasure and materialism] can be converted and can be saved. The Church is to be concerned about sin in all its manifestations, and sin can be as terrible in a capitalist as in a communist; it can be as terrible in a rich man as in a poor man; it can manifest itself in all classes and in all types and in all groups. (Martyn Lloyd-Jones (1988) Studies in the Sermon on the Mount Chapter 14 The Salt of the Earth, Inter-Varsity Press, England)

In this context we can replace ‘communism’ with every other evil that besets our society – divorce, domestic violence, abortion, same-sex marriage and all other sexual immoral activities men and women practice.  Thus one can see it is the individual whose morality is guided by the Holy Spirit in recognition of the Holiness of God that is the instrument that effects change – the Church is the encourager (Hebrews 10:250, the group, or body (not organisation – see Romans 12:4, 1 Corinthians 12:12-12, Ephesians 5:30 etc.) of praying Christians (Ephesians 6:18, Jude 1:20) that preaches the gospel upon which the Holy Spirit can provoke the ‘grass-roots’ repentance and thus freeing men and women from sin that leads to violence or abortions etc.

Thus for the individual, it is what we say and do and the way we respond to every event in our life that speaks to society – and furthermore we need to understand our society has always been blind and deaf to the prattle of churches concerned with social issues rather than God’s command of delivering the good news of Jesus Christ dying for our sins.

David L Simon
Updated: 20 May 2018

 

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Using this website

The weakness of any Christian website is the failure of the author to truly know the mind of God. His weakness due to sin (and there will be weaknesses) can always be revealed if checked against the Bible. Therefore, it is urged that anyone using this website must check the information against the Holy Scriptures - for the test of any such information, by any person, is measruing it against the Canon. For this reason the Canon is called simply that - deriving its name from 'cane' meaning measuring stick. Even the early Christians checked what the Apostle Paul had spoken against Scripture in order to test its veracity. You need to do the same.

Now the Bereans were of more noble character than the Thessalonians, for they received the message with great eagerness and examined the Scriptures every day to see if what Paul said was true. Acts 17:11

Furthermore, we must test all things:

Test [prove] all things; hold fast what is good. 1 Thessalonians 5:22


Updated: 11 Feb 2017

 

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Updated: 08 Jun 2015