The U.S. Military – A Symbol Of Freedom

“To The Shores Of Tripoli” was a movie that was made about World War II during that war. The Marines who are shown in the video are examples of those who train to fight for our nation. World War II was a very critical period of time in our nation’s history. To see the Marines as they are marching, is to also see, “freedom on parade.” If you will notice, Randolph Scott is leading the marching Marines, who are spread, left to right, “23 abreast.” The left heel of each Marine can be seen striking the ground, at the same time, in perfect cadence, with the beat of the drum. Watch how the marines make that wide right turn, with no one getting out of cadence, or out of place. Wow! Such an example of training and disciple! I have watched this video, many times, without ever getting tired of it.
(Randolph is the actor playing the Marine First Sergeant, leading the other Marines; ex-Marines, please help me with his rank.)(John Payne is the actor playing the Marine, “Private Winters.”)

The Axis Powers of Germany, Japan and Italy had plans to conquer the world for their cause of world domination. Without the entry of the United States military forces into World War II, the objectives of the Axis powers would have been achieved. Consider some of the related facts that are included as a part of this post.

Consider the following two verses; they may help you to understand this post.

1 Corinthians 3:1-2 Good News Translation (GNT)

1 As a matter of fact, my friends, I could not talk to you as I talk to people who have the Spirit; I had to talk to you as though you belonged to this world, as children in the Christian faith. 2 I had to feed you milk, not solid food, because you were not ready for it. And even now you are not ready for it,

Marines Raise Flag Over Iwo Jima Archival Footage

Consider the Marines on Iwo Jima as they “raised a flag” in honor of their defeat of the Japanese armed forces. The Japanese attack on American forces in Hawaii took place on the morning of December 7, 1941. The American forces took the island of Iwo Jima on February 9, 1945. Consider the importance of paying honor to the flag of the United States Of America.

The Attack On Pearl Harbor – December 7, 1941
The axis powers of the world, being led by Hitler (Germany), Mussolini (Italy), and Hirohito (Japan), had their declared intent of taking over the whole world. Hitler was already overrunning much of Europe. Great Britain was the last significant military force that Hitler was trying to overthrow. France had it’s “resistance,” but had no military force to oppose Germany. After the Japanese attack on American forces in Hawaii, on Dec 7, they attacked American forces in the Republic of the Philippines on the next day, Dec 8, 1941. Japanese forces began their plan of overthrowing all nations and forces in the south Pacific.

Marines Raise Flag Over Iwo Jima 1945 United News Newsreel; World War II

Consider the allied forces, of which the United Sates assumed leadership.

After the United States of America was drawn into the second world war, American military forces also began engaging axis forces in Europe and North Africa. Other nations of Allied support followed the lead of the United States to stop Hitler, Mussolini and Hirohito as they brutalized the citizenry and military of the nations that were on their map of world domination. As stated above, without the entry of the United States into World War II, Hitler would have overthrown Russia and Asia, through its attack from the West, with Hirohito advancing from the East, and Mussolini attacking from the South. Could any nation have succeeded in defending itself from such a three-front attack? Consider the numbers of Russian civilians and soldiers that died at the hands of Hitler’s soldiers, minus the forces of Japan and Italy.

Soviet military dead and missing, 8.7 million

Consider the Blitzkrieg, of Britain by German aircraft.

The importance of the presence of U.S. forces in the battle against the axis powers can not be understated. Without the defeat of the forces of Hitler, Mussolini and Hirohito, the freedom of America, and other free countries, would not have been saved.

Group of American and British prisoners are marched through streets under German …HD Stock Footage

(U.S. And British POWs being marched by German soldiers through a French city. Notice how the French citizens mistreat the POWs.)

Hitler had a strong hold in North Africa, and would have marched southward, until all of Africa would fly the flag of Nazi Germany. Germany, Italy and Japan would have continued their assault on Asia, until the flags of those nations would fly no more. The nations of the Pacific, to include the continent of Australia, would be easy prey for the assault of the axis forces, with the result of many more Nazi flags flying in the lands of Nazi-led conquest.

After the attack on Hawaii, there was great concern that the west coast of the United States would also come until Japanese attack. There was also a fear that sympathizers of Japan living in the United States would begin attacks on the mainland of the United States. Democrat President Franklin Delano Roosevelt reacted to the fear of attack “from within” the USA, by the internment of citizens of the USA, who were of Japanese ancestry.

Concerns of the President were found to be valid when a German u boat was sunk off of the east of coast of the USA, and was found to have loaves of bread from a local bakery stored in the boat.

The military forces of the USA was at a weakened state of readiness when the Japanese attacked Hawaii. Without a national resolve to defend our country, and defeat the axis forces in other parts of the world, the USA would have been the starting point of axis entry into North, Central and South America, where the Nazi flag would have been planted. The success, liberty and tolerance that we have as great fortune in the United States of America, would have been replaced with the Nazi desires for our country, as well as for the rest of the world. There would be no NFL, NBA, MBL, or multi-millionaire contracts for athletes. Every other aspect of our lives would be totally different, whether it would be employment, hobby, relaxation, recreation, or religious.

The Liberation of Dachau

Notice the American Soldiers liberating the German concentration camp at Dachau. The prisoners were Jews of the Holocaust.
Notice the numbers of American War deaths.

405,399 Americans of our armed forces lost their lives in World War II. They died in their support for our flag, and to keep it flying.


Many of us have known members of the armed forces who gave their lives in defense of our nation. My friends, who were such brave and honorable patriots, were those of the Vietnam War era. There is a bible verse that sheds rich thought on such brave and honorable people. “The greatest love you can have for your friends is to give your life for them.” (John 15:13)

I am proud to be an American, and proudly salute our flag.

The United States Air Force (USAF) turned 70 years-old on September 18. On September 18, 1947, Chief Justice Fred Vinson swore in Stuart Symington as the first secretary of the air force, officially founding a new branch of the U.S. military. Gen. Carl A. Spaatz became the USAF’s first chief of staff eight days later on September 26, 1947.

I am also very proud to be, “U.S. Air Force, Retired.”

71 – Post Preparation – Psalms, Hymns, and Spiritual Songs

Speak to one another with psalms, hymns, and spiritual songs.
Sing and make music in your hearts to the Lord,
Ephesians 5:19, Berean Study Bible

Holy Are You Lord – Terry MacAlmon

We Glorify The Lamb – Terry MacAlmon

When I Look Into Your Holiness – Terry MacAlmon

70 – Revelation 2 – The Things Which Are – Data

How is Jesus preparing a place for us in heaven?

Your First Hour in Glory, What Will Heaven Be Like?

God’s love for Israel

Restoration of Judah and Israel’

Ezekiel 16:60 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

The Covenant Remembered

60 “Nevertheless, I will remember My covenant with you in the days of your youth, and I will establish an everlasting covenant with you.

16:60 I will remember My covenant. God is gracious and He always finds a covenant basis on which He can exercise His grace. The Lord will remember the Abrahamic Covenant (cf. Gen. 12:1ff.) made with Israel in her youth. Restoration will be by grace, not merit. an everlasting covenant. This is the New Covenant, which is unconditional, saving, and everlasting (cf. 37:26; Is. 59:21; 61:8; Jer. 31:31–34; Heb. 8:6–13). The basis of God’s grace will not be the Mosaic Covenant, which the Jews could never fulfill, even with the best intentions (cf. Ex. 24:1ff.). When God establishes His eternal covenant, Israel will know that God is the Lord because of His grace. (Note: MacArthur Study Bible)

Introduction To Post

There are some people who may be confused about the meaning of the following verse, because of inclusion of the words, “to whom who overcomes.” Some may believe that their salvation is not secure in Christ. Some may believe that more than faith in Christ is necessary to keep them secure in Christ, which makes their understanding of salvation as being based on “something that they have to do.” So, they are constantly trying to determine what it is that they must do to keep them secure in Christ. The truth of scripture is that faith in Christ keeps us “secure in Christ,” at all times, and under all circumstances. We can never fall out of the eternal and saving grasp of Christ. The parachute of saving faith is nothing that we can make for ourselves; Christ makes it for us. It is nothing that will ever fail to open; Christ opens it for us. It is nothing that will ever wear out; Christ makes it new, and keeps it new. We would never know how to make the spiritual parachute of saving faith, or that we would need such an umbrella; only Christ makes it, offers it to us, and maintains it in eternal perfection.

It is very helpful to use scripture to explain scripture, as is shown in the “scripture that follows the scripture,” of concern.

Revelation 2:7 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

7 …”To him who overcomes, I will grant to eat of the tree of life which is in the Paradise of God.’

The following scripture shows that whomever has been born again, is an overcomer, and will find their eternal place of residence in the Paradise of God, which is the Presence of God. See the MacArthur Study Bible note.

1 John 5:4 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

4 For whatever is born of God overcomes the world; and this is the victory that has overcome the world—our faith.

MacArthur Study Bible note.

5:4 overcomes. John clearly defines who these overcomers are: they are all who believe that Jesus is God’s Son, and all that means. The overcomers are believers—all of them (cf. 2:13). The word for “overcomer” comes from a Gr. word meaning “to conquer,” “to have victory,” “to have superiority” or “conquering power.” The word reflects a genuine superiority that leads to overwhelming success. The victory is demonstrable; it involves overthrowing an enemy so that the victory is seen by all. Jesus also used this word to describe Himself (John 16:33). Because of believers’ union with Christ, they too partake in His victory (Rom. 8:37; 2 Cor. 2:14). The word “overcomes” in the original language conveys the idea that the believer has continual victory over the world.

Revelation Chapter 2-3 – Data

Text – Revelation Chapter 2-3 – God’s Plan For The Ages 70

Revelation 2-3 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

Chapter 2

Message to Ephesus

1 “To the angel of the church in Ephesus write:

The One who holds the seven stars in His right hand, the One who walks among the seven golden lampstands, says this:

2 ‘I know your deeds and your toil and perseverance, and that you cannot tolerate evil men, and you put to the test those who call themselves apostles, and they are not, and you found them to be false; 3 and you have perseverance and have endured for My name’s sake, and have not grown weary. 4 But I have this against you, that you have left your first love. 5 Therefore remember from where you have fallen, and repent and do the deeds you did at first; or else I am coming to you and will remove your lampstand out of its place—unless you repent. 6 Yet this you do have, that you hate the deeds of the Nicolaitans, which I also hate. 7 He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches. To him who overcomes, I will grant to eat of the tree of life which is in the Paradise of God.’

Message to Smyrna

8 “And to the angel of the church in Smyrna write:

The first and the last, who was dead, and has come to life, says this:

9 ‘I know your tribulation and your poverty (but you are rich), and the blasphemy by those who say they are Jews and are not, but are a synagogue of Satan. 10 Do not fear what you are about to suffer. Behold, the devil is about to cast some of you into prison, so that you will be tested, and you will have tribulation for ten days. Be faithful until death, and I will give you the crown of life. 11 He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches. He who overcomes will not be hurt by the second death.’

Message to Pergamum

12 “And to the angel of the church in Pergamum write:

The One who has the sharp two-edged sword says this:

13 ‘I know where you dwell, where Satan’s throne is; and you hold fast My name, and did not deny My faith even in the days of Antipas, My witness, My faithful one, who was killed among you, where Satan dwells. 14 But I have a few things against you, because you have there some who hold the teaching of Balaam, who kept teaching Balak to put a stumbling block before the sons of Israel, to eat things sacrificed to idols and to commit acts of immorality. 15 So you also have some who in the same way hold the teaching of the Nicolaitans. 16 Therefore repent; or else I am coming to you quickly, and I will make war against them with the sword of My mouth. 17 He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches. To him who overcomes, to him I will give some of the hidden manna, and I will give him a white stone, and a new name written on the stone which no one knows but he who receives it.’

Message to Thyatira

18 “And to the angel of the church in Thyatira write:

The Son of God, who has eyes like a flame of fire, and His feet are like burnished bronze, says this:

19 ‘I know your deeds, and your love and faith and service and perseverance, and that your deeds of late are greater than at first. 20 But I have this against you, that you tolerate the woman Jezebel, who calls herself a prophetess, and she teaches and leads My bond-servants astray so that they commit acts of immorality and eat things sacrificed to idols. 21 I gave her time to repent, and she does not want to repent of her immorality. 22 Behold, I will throw her on a bed of sickness, and those who commit adultery with her into great tribulation, unless they repent of her deeds. 23 And I will kill her children with pestilence, and all the churches will know that I am He who searches the minds and hearts; and I will give to each one of you according to your deeds. 24 But I say to you, the rest who are in Thyatira, who do not hold this teaching, who have not known the deep things of Satan, as they call them—I place no other burden on you. 25 Nevertheless what you have, hold fast until I come. 26 He who overcomes, and he who keeps My deeds until the end, to him I will give authority over the nations; 27 and he shall rule them with a rod of iron, as the vessels of the potter are broken to pieces, as I also have received authority from My Father; 28 and I will give him the morning star. 29 He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches.’

Commentary. Notes provided by MacArthur Study Bible.

2:1—3:22 Although these 7 churches were actual, historical churches in Asia Minor, they represent the types of churches that perennially exist throughout the church age. What Christ says to these churches is relevant in all times.
2:1 angel. The elder or pastor from the church (see note on 1:20). Ephesus. It was an inland city 3 mi. from the sea, but the broad mouth of the Cayster River allowed access and provided the greatest harbor in Asia Minor. Four great trade roads went through Ephesus; therefore, it became known as the gateway to Asia. It was the center of the worship of Artemis (Greek), or Diana (Roman), whose temple was one of the 7 Wonders of the Ancient World. Paul ministered there for 3 years (Acts 20:31), and later met with the Ephesian elders on his way to Jerusalem (Acts 20). Timothy, Tychicus, and the Apostle John all served this church. John was in Ephesus when he was arrested by Domitian and exiled 50 mi. SW to Patmos. seven stars. See note on 1:16. seven golden lampstands. See note on 1:12.
2:2 who say they are apostles. The Ephesian church exercised spiritual discernment. It knew how to evaluate men who claimed spiritual leadership by their doctrine and behavior (cf. 1 Thess. 5:20, 21).
2:3 not become weary. For over 40 years, since its founding, this church had remained faithful to the Word and the Lord. Through difficulty and persecution, the members had endured, always driven by the right motive, i.e., for Christ’s name and reputation.
2:4 left your first love. To be a Christian is to love the Lord Jesus Christ (John 14:21, 23; 1 Cor. 16:22). But the Ephesians’ passion and fervor for Christ had become cold, mechanical orthodoxy. Their doctrinal and moral purity, their undiminished zeal for the truth, and their disciplined service were no substitute for the love for Christ they had forsaken.
2:5 remove your lampstand. God’s judgment would bring an end to the Ephesian church.
2:6 the deeds of the Nicolaitans. A problem in Pergamos also (vv. 12–15), this heresy was similar to the teaching of Balaam (vv. 14, 15). Nicolas means “one who conquers the people.” Irenaeus writes that Nicolas, who was made a deacon in Acts 6, was a false believer who later became apostate; but because of his credentials he was able to lead the church astray. And, like Balaam, he led the people into immorality and wickedness. The Nicolaitans, followers of Nicolas, were involved in immorality and assaulted the church with sensual temptations. Clement of Alexander says, “They abandoned themselves to pleasure like goats, leading a life of self-indulgence.” Their teaching perverted grace and replaced liberty with license.
2:7 him who overcomes. According to John’s own definition, to be an overcomer is to be a Christian (see note on 1 John 5:4; cf. vv. 11, 17, 26; 3:5, 12, 21). tree of life. True believers enjoy the promise of heaven (see notes on 22:2; Gen. 2:9).
2:8 angel. See note on v. 1. Smyrna. Smyrna means “myrrh,” the substance used for perfume and often for anointing a dead body for aromatic purposes. Called the crown of Asia, this ancient city (modern Izmir, Turkey) was the most beautiful in Asia Minor and a center of science and medicine. Always on the winner’s side in the Roman wars, Smyrna’s intense loyalty to Rome resulted in a strong emperor-worship cult. Fifty years after John’s death, Polycarp, the pastor of the church in Smyrna, was burned alive at the age of 86 for refusing to worship Caesar. A large Jewish community in the city also proved hostile to the early church. the First and the Last. See note on 1:17.
2:9 who say they are Jews. Although they were Jews physically, they were not true Jews but spiritual pagans (cf. Rom. 2:28). They allied with other pagans in putting Christians to death as they attempted to stamp out the Christian faith. synagogue of Satan. With the rejection of its Messiah, Judaism becomes as much a tool of Satan as emperor worship.
2:10 devil. The Gr. name for God’s archenemy means “accuser.” For discussion of Satan, see notes on Eph. 6:10–17. tribulation ten days. Their imprisonment will be brief. crown of life. It is the crown which is life, or the reward which is life, not an actual crown to adorn the head. “Crown” here does not refer to the kind royalty wear, but to the wreath awarded winning athletes.
2:11 who overcomes. This identifies every Christian (see note on v. 7). the second death. The first death is only physical; the second is spiritual and eternal (cf. 20:14).
2:12 angel. See note on 1:20. Pergamos. Pergamos lit. means “citadel” and is the word from which we get parchment—a writing material developed from animal skin, which apparently was first developed in that area. Pergamos (modern Bergama) was built on a 1,000-foot hill in a broad, fertile plain about 20 mi. inland from the Aegean Sea. It had served as the capital of the Roman province of Asia Minor for over 250 years. It was an important religious center for the pagan cults of Athena, Asklepios, Dionysius (or Bacchus, the god of drunkenness), and Zeus. It was the first city in Asia to build a temple to Caesar (29 B.C.) and became the capital of the cult of Caesar worship. two-edged sword. See note on 1:16.
2:13 where Satan’s throne is. The headquarters of satanic opposition and a Gentile base for false religions. On the acropolis in Pergamos was a huge, throne-shaped altar to Zeus. In addition, Asklepios, the god of healing, was the god most associated with Pergamos. His snake-like form is still the medical symbol today. The famous medical school connected to his temple mingled medicine with superstition. One prescription called for the worshiper to sleep on the temple floor, allowing snakes to crawl over his body and infuse him with their healing power. Antipas. Probably the pastor of the church. faithful martyr. Tradition says Antipas was burned to death inside a brass bull. “Martyr,” a transliteration of the Gr. word, means witness. Because so many of the witnesses faithful to Christ were put to death, the word “martyr” developed its current definition.
2:14 doctrine of Balaam. Balaam tried unsuccessfully to prostitute his prophetic gift and curse Israel for money offered him by Balak, king of Moab. So he devised a plot to have Moabite women seduce Israelite men into intermarriage. The result was the blasphemous union of Israel with fornication and idolatrous feasts (for the story of Balaam, see Num. 22–25). things sacrificed to idols. See Acts 15:19–29.
2:15 Thus you also. The teaching of the Nicolaitans led to the same behavior as Balaam’s schemes. doctrine of the Nicolaitans. See note on v. 6.
2:16 sword of My mouth. See note on 1:16.
2:17 overcomes. See note on v. 7. hidden manna. Just as Israel received manna, God promises to give the true believer the spiritual bread the unbelieving world cannot see: Jesus Christ (cf. John 6:51). white stone. When an athlete won in the games, he was often given, as part of his prize, a white stone which was an admission pass to the winner’s celebration afterwards. This may picture the moment when the overcomer will receive his ticket to the eternal victory celebration in heaven. new name. A personal message from Christ to the ones He loves, which serves as their admission pass into eternal glory. It is so personal that only the person who receives it will know what it is.
2:18 angel. See note on 1:20. Thyatira. Located halfway between Pergamos and Sardis, this city had been under Roman rule for nearly 3 centuries (ca. 190 B.C.). Since the city was situated in a long valley that swept 40 mi. to Pergamos, it had no natural defenses and had a long history of being destroyed and rebuilt. Originally populated by soldiers of Alexander the Great, it was little more than a military outpost to guard Pergamos. Lydia came from this city on business and was converted under Paul’s ministry (Acts 16:14, 15). eyes like a flame of fire. See note on 1:14. feet like fine brass. Cf. 19:15; see note on 1:15.
2:20 Jezebel. Probably a pseudonym for a woman who influenced the church in the way Jezebel influenced the OT Jews into idolatry and immorality (cf. 1 Kin. 21:25, 26). sexual immorality and eat things sacrificed to idols. Cf. Acts 15:19–29; see note on v. 14.
2:22 sickbed. Lit. “bed.” Having given this woman time to repent, God was to judge her upon a bed. Since she used a luxurious bed to commit her immorality, and the reclining couch at the idol feast to eat things offered to false gods, He was to give her a bed in hell where she would lie forever.
2:23 her children. The church was about 40 years old as John wrote, and her teaching had produced a second generation, advocating the same debauchery. who searches the minds and hearts. God has perfect, intimate knowledge of every human heart; no evil can be hidden from Him (Ps. 7:9; Prov. 24:12; Jer. 11:20; 17:10; 20:12). according to your works. Always the basis for future judgment (20:12, 13; Matt. 16:27; Rom. 2:6). Works do not save (Eph. 2:8, 9), but they do evidence salvation (James 2:14–26).
2:24 the depths of Satan. This unbelievable libertinism and license was the fruit of pre-gnostic teaching that one was free to engage and explore the sphere of Satan and participate in evil with the body without harming the spirit (see Introduction to 1 John: Background and Setting).
2:26 overcomes. See note on v. 7.
2:27 rule them with a rod of iron. Lit. “shepherd them with an iron rod.” During the millennial kingdom, Christ will enforce His will and protect His sheep with His iron scepter from any who would seek to harm them (cf. Ps. 2:9).
2:28 the morning star. John later reveals Christ to be “the Bright and Morning Star.” Although the morning star has already dawned in our hearts (2 Pet. 1:19), someday we will have Him in His fullness.

For information that relates to the preparation of this post, and to sources of information, please click onto the following link.

69 – Israel – 444 BC To The Roman Empire

Ship Full of Holocaust Survivors Sing Hatikva in 1945

Watching the following video made me cry.

March of the Living – Tribute to Liberators

Soldiers, Russia, British and American, are seen as they free Jews who had been enslaved, tortured and starved by Hitler’s Nazis. Yes! There was a holocaust. Some people deny that act of inhumanity, but, it happened.

Israel 444 BC To The Roman Empire

In order for anyone to have a clear understanding of the culture of Israel, and the Jewish people, it is an imperative that the religious aspects of such a people be considered. Before this post is read, it is advised that the prior posts be read, in their order of being published:

1. Israel, A Look Within, From Without
2. Israel 931-586 BC
3. Israel 586-445 BC

As has been mentioned in this study of Israel, the Jews have always had a great respect for their prophets, from whom “God’s chosen people” (per, Deuteronomy 7:6), believed that they received revelation from God. The prophets were identified as being major or minor prophets. The only difference between the two groups was the length of their writings. The major prophets (Isaiah, Jeremiah, Ezekiel and Daniel) had no greater significance than did the minor prophets (Hosea, Joel, Amos, Obadiah, Jonah, Micah, Nahum, Habakkuk, Zephaniah, Haggai, Zechariah, Malachi). The prophets wrote prior to the deportation of the Jews, during the exile of the Jews, and after the return of the Jews to Jerusalem and surrounding Judah. The times of the writings of the prophets occurred from approximately 850 B.C. until approximately 400 BC.

After the return of the Jews to Judah and Jerusalem, three other important books were written that Jews hold in high regard. Those books are Ezra, Nehemiah and Esther.

Ezra. The Book of Ezra is devoted to events occurring in the land of Israel at the time of the return of Jews, from the Babylonian captivity and subsequent years, covering a period of approximately one century, beginning in 538 BC. The Persian King, Cyrus, issued an edict in that year., for the return of the exiled Jews to Judah and Jerusalem. The temple, which had been destroyed by the Babylonians in 586 BC, began being rebuilt in 535 BC, and was completed in 515 BC. Ezra was a Jewish scribe and priest; he was a descendant of Aaron, and was well-versed in the Law of Moses. He was commissioned by King Artaxerxes of Persia to return to Jerusalem and restore the Law for the Jewish people (Ezra 7:1-16). Ezra returned to Jerusalem in 458 BC. The time of writing was from about 457 to 444 BC.

Nehemiah. The Book of Nehemiah was likely written between 420 and 400 B.C. It continues the story of Israel’s return from the Babylonian captivity, and the rebuilding of the walls of Jerusalem, which were also destroyed in 586 BC by Nebuchadnezzar. Nehemiah was the Jew who was appointed as the Governor of Judah, in 444 BC. He was appointed Governor by the Persian King Artaxerxes, and was serving as the King’s cupbearer (he tasted the King’s food to make sure that it was not poisoned). Nehemiah went to Jerusalem in 444 BC, and completed the rebuilding of the walls of the city in 443 BC.

Esther. The events of this book took place in Persia, which is current day Iran. Its author is anonymous, however, some believe Mordecai, (Esther’s cousin and guardian), wrote it. It was written approximately 470 BC in Persia. The key personalities are Esther, Mordecai, King Ahasuerus (or Xerxes), and Haman. The book is a post-exile story about Jews who stayed behind, after most returned to Jerusalem after captivity. Babylon was conquered by Persia, and Esther miraculously became the queen of the land. She was a brave young woman who saved her people from being exterminated. She became the queen of Persia around 475 BC, after winning a beauty contest. Esther’s cousin, Mordecai, saved the king’s life once, when two men in the palace tried to attack him (see Esther 2:21-23). He also played a big part in helping Esther stand up for her people. Haman is the villain of the story. He came up with a plan to kill every Jew in Persia. He built a tower, which he was going to use to hang Mordecai. But, Haman got the justice that he deserved; he was hung from his own tower (see Esther 7:9-10). After helping to save his people, Mordecai was promoted to second in rank to only the King (see Esther 10:2-3). As a Jewish maiden who had become the wife of the powerful king, Esther reached a crossroads of faith. Dare she stand up for the Lord and His chosen people? Or would she just blend into society as Persian royalty?

From 722 BC, when the northern ten tribes of Israel were taken captive by Assyria, until 586 BC, when the southern two tribes were taken captive by Babylon, until 539 BC, when Babylon was defeated by Medo-Persia, the Jews were under the control of world empires. Greece defeated the Persians in about 330 BC, and became the next world empire; they controlled and influenced the Jews in the culture of the Greeks until Rome became the next word empire. Jews became the writers of the New Testament of the Bible (minus Luke, a gentile), and wrote their scriptures in Greek, to include some Aramaic verses. While in exile, many Jews lost their knowledge of their native Hebrew language. Prior to their deportation in 586 BC, some Jews were also speaking in Aramaic, as recorded in 2 Kings 18:26 (713 BC) and Isaiah 36:11 (710 BC).

Consider the oppression of the Jews while they were under the rule of the Greek Empire. The temple that had been rebuilt in 515 BC was desecrated by the Greeks in 167 BC. That event is recorded in the Old Testament book of Daniel, in Chapter eleven, verse 31. A second account is provided by a Jew, by the name of Matthew, in the New Testament book of Matthew, Chapter 24, verse 15. Most Jews do not accept the writings of Matthew, from a spiritual standpoint. However, the facts of Matthew are very consistent with the account of Daniel.

The following notes come from the writings of Dr. John MacArthur, as he discusses Daniel, Chapter, Verse 31, and Matthew, Chapter 24, Verse 15.

11:31 DEFILE THE SANCTUARY. Antiochus’ soldiers, no doubt working with apostate Jews, guarded the temple, halting all worship, while others attacked the city on the Sabbath, slaughtering men, women and children. Soldiers desecrated Israel’s temple, banned circumcision and daily sacrifices (1 Macc. 1:44–54), and sacrificed a pig on the altar. The Syrians on Chislev (Dec. 15, 167 B.C.), even imposed an idol statue, in honor of the Olympian god Zeus, into the temple. Jews called it “the abomination that causes desolation,” i.e., emptying or ruining for Jewish worship. ABOMINATION OF DESOLATION. Antiochus’ soldiers profaned God’s temple by spreading sow’s broth on the altar and banning daily sacrifices (cf. 8:14 and see note there) as described in 1 Macc. 1:44–54. Both Daniel and Christ said this atrocity was only a preview of the abomination that would happen later, under the final Antichrist (9:27; Matt. 24:15).

24:15 ABOMINATION OF DESOLATION. See notes on Daniel 9:27; 11:31. This phrase originally referred to the desecration of the temple by Antiochus Epiphanes, King of Syria, in the second century B.C. Antiochus invaded Jerusalem in 168 B.C., made the altar into a shrine to Zeus, and even sacrificed pigs on it. However, Christ clearly was looking toward a yet-future “abomination of desolation.” Some suggest that this prophecy was fulfilled in A.D. 70, when Titus invaded Jerusalem and destroyed the temple (see note on v. 2). However, the Apostle Paul saw a still-future fulfillment (2 Thess. 2:3, 4), as did John (Rev. 13:14, 15)—when the Antichrist sets up an image in the temple during the future tribulation. Christ’s words here, therefore, look beyond the events of A.D., 70 to a time of even greater global cataclysm that will immediately precede His second coming to earth (cf. vv. 29–31).

Antiochus Epiphanes was a Greek king of the Seleucid Empire who reigned over Syria from 175 BC until 164 BC. He is famous for his brutal persecution of the Jews. Consider the following article that discusses the oppression of the Greeks and Syrians on Israel. The Maccbees were Jews. Consider the comment on Chanukah, also spelled Hanukkah.

333 BC-143 BC – Greek Rule

From the year 180 BC until 161 BC the Maccabees rebelled against the Syrian king Antiochus IV, who persecuted the Jews. He launched a campaign to crush Judaism, and in 167 BC he sacked the Temple. At the end of the period, after the rebels had conquered Judah and Jerusalem, the Temple was re-inaugurated. The Jewish holiday of Chanukah, also spelled Hanukkah, is based on these historic events.

In 168 BC, Antiochus, being defeated in his plans against Egypt, turned his anger against Palestine, and undertook the extermination of the Jewish religion and the complete Hellenizing of Judea. The walls of Jerusalem were thrown down, but the old city of David was fortified and occupied by a Syrian garrison. The observance of Jewish rites, the Sabbath, and circumcision, was prohibited. Those who resisted were put to death. In December 168, at the great altar of burnt offering in the temple of Jerusalem, a pagan altar was built, and on the 25th Chisleu sacrifices were offered on it.

Even after having suffered greatly from other kingdoms and nations, Jews still hold strongly to the promise that was given to them by Moses in 1451 BC, in the book of Deuteronomy. Consider the following verses:

Devarim 7:6 Orthodox Jewish Bible (OJB)

6 For thou art an Am Kodesh unto Hashem Eloheicha; Hashem Eloheicha hath chosen thee to be an Am Segullah (Treasured People) unto Himself, above all people that are upon the face of ha’adamah.

Deuteronomy 7:6 Complete Jewish Bible (CJB)

6 For you are a people set apart as holy for Adonai your God. Adonai your God has chosen you out of all the peoples on the face of the earth to be his own unique treasure.

Deuteronomy 7:6 New Living Translation (NLT)

6 For you are a holy people, who belong to the Lord your God. Of all the people on earth, the Lord your God has chosen you to be his own special treasure.

Jews also hold to the writings of Moses, that they believe to be given to him by God, and date back to 2126 BC. Consider the following verses from the Book of Genesis:

Bereshis 12:3 Orthodox Jewish Bible (OJB)

3 And I will bless the one blessing you, and curse him that curses you; and kol mishpochot haadamah shall be blessed through you.[T.N. There is a brocha in this verse that many do not know but that every true follower of Moshiach should know.]

Genesis 12:3 Complete Jewish Bible (CJB)

3 I will bless those who bless you, but I will curse anyone who curses you; and by you all the families of the earth will be blessed.

Genesis 12:3 New Living Translation (NLT)

3 I will bless those who bless you and curse those who treat you with contempt. All the families on earth will be blessed through you.”

Jews believe that the promises of Genesis 12:3 flow to them from Abraham (the object of this verse, Gen 12:1-2), through the bloodline of his son, Isaac, and his grandson, Jacob, who become known as Israel, per Genesis 32:28. The Jews also believe that by being the chosen people of God, He will use their bloodline to bring the promised Messiah into the world (Isaiah 7:14; 9:7). Jews also believe that they will inherit a place of key significance during the, “yet future,” Kingdom of God (Zephaniah 3:8).

Consider the words, “Judah” and “Judea.”

Prior to the exile of Jews from Jerusalem, the tribes of Judah and Benjamin made up the southern kingdom of Judah.

After the Captivity the name, Judea, was applied to the whole of the country west of the Jordan (Haggai 1:1, 14; 2:2). But under the Romans, in the time of Christ, it denoted the southernmost of the three divisions of Palestine (Matthew 2:1, 5; 3:1; 4:25), although it was also sometimes used for Palestine generally (Acts 28:21).
The province of Judea, as distinguished from Galilee and Samaria, included the territories of the tribes of Judah, Benjamin, Dan, Simeon, and part of Ephraim. Under the Romans it was a part of the province of Syria, and was governed by a procurator.

68 – Bible Translation Into English – Video And Chart

Holy Are You Lord – Terry MacAlmon

“..Holy, holy, holy, Lord God Almighty, who was, and who is, and who is to come.” (Revelation 4:8, Darby Translation)

It is important for all believers in Christ to have as great an understanding of God’s Word, as is possible. There have been many times that while listening to a person who was described as being a Christian, that I was terribly embarrassed at the ignorance of Scripture that came from that person’s mouth. In order for those of us, who present ourselves as being believers in Christ, to be seen as being credible in for witness of Christ, that we must have a dedicated time of reading God’s Word, as well as a time of critical Bible study. Scripture reading is good, but a critical study of those scriptures must not be neglected.

This article focuses on the translation of God’s Word into the English language. Future articles will relate to the translation of Scripture into non-English languages, and into the tongues of people groups who may not have a formal language.

Consider the video that follows. The speaker is a Bible translator. His discussion closely follows the following chart that shows the sequence of translations of the Bible into the English language.

Please let me discuss the situation of a person who has not been born again, but is a member of a Bible translation team. Let’s state the obvious. That person has not accepted Christ as Lord and Savior, and does not have the indelling of God’s Holy Spirit within their spirit. Such a person does not have Godly wisdom, and will only be “moving words around,” in the pursuit of choosing among mortal words, for the purpose of accomplishing a spiritual goal.

Consider the following verses that relate to the importance of Holy Scripture. They are important in our daily lives, and need to be properly taught. It is important to remember that from the time of the Wycliffe Translation of the 1380s, until today’s date, the day-to-day word usage of the English language has undergone many changes. Therefore, translators must keep those changes in mind as they try to make the the Bible understandable to the masses of people who may read it today.

Psalm 119:105 King James Version (KJV)

105 Thy word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path.

2 Timothy 3:16-17 New Living Translation (NLT)

16 All Scripture is inspired by God and is useful to teach us what is true and to make us realize what is wrong in our lives. It corrects us when we are wrong and teaches us to do what is right. 17 God uses it to prepare and equip his people to do every good work.

Acts 17:11 New Living Translation (NLT)

11 And the people of Berea were more open-minded than those in Thessalonica, and they listened eagerly to Paul’s message. They searched the Scriptures day after day to see if Paul and Silas were teaching the truth.

Video discussion on Bible translation:

History of Bible Translation

Chart on English Bible translations:

English Bible History

The fascinating story of how we got the Bible in its present form actually starts thousands of years ago, as briefly outlined in our Timeline of Bible Translation History. As a background study, we recommend that you first review our discussion of the Pre-Reformation History of the Bible from 1,400 B.C. to 1,400 A.D., which covers the transmission of the scripture through the original languages of Hebrew and Greek, and the 1,000 years of the Dark & Middle Ages when the Word was trapped in only Latin. Our starting point in this discussion of Bible history, however, is the advent of the scripture in the English language with the “Morning Star of the Reformation”, John Wycliffe.

John Wycliffe
The first hand-written English language Bible manuscripts were produced in the 1380’s AD by John Wycliffe, an Oxford professor, scholar, and theologian. Wycliffe, (also spelled “Wycliff” & “Wyclif”), was well-known throughout Europe for his opposition to the teaching of the organized Church, which he believed to be contrary to the Bible. With the help of his followers, called the Lollards, and his assistant Purvey, and many other faithful scribes, Wycliffe produced dozens of English language manuscript copies of the scriptures. They were translated out of the Latin Vulgate, which was the only source text available to Wycliffe. The Pope was so infuriated by his teachings and his translation of the Bible into English, that 44 years after Wycliffe had died, he ordered the bones to be dug-up, crushed, and scattered in the river!

John Hus
One of Wycliffe’s followers, John Hus, actively promoted Wycliffe’s ideas: that people should be permitted to read the Bible in their own language, and they should oppose the tyranny of the Roman church that threatened anyone possessing a non-Latin Bible with execution. Hus was burned at the stake in 1415, with Wycliffe’s manuscript Bibles used as kindling for the fire. The last words of John Hus were that, “in 100 years, God will raise up a man whose calls for reform cannot be suppressed.” Almost exactly 100 years later, in 1517, Martin Luther nailed his famous 95 Theses of Contention (a list of 95 issues of heretical theology and crimes of the Roman Catholic Church) into the church door at Wittenberg. The prophecy of Hus had come true! Martin Luther went on to be the first person to translate and publish the Bible in the commonly-spoken dialect of the German people; a translation more appealing than previous German Biblical translations. Foxe’s Book of Martyrs records that in that same year, 1517, seven people were burned at the stake by the Roman Catholic Church for the crime of teaching their children to say the Lord’s Prayer in English rather than Latin.

Johann Gutenberg
Johann Gutenberg invented the printing press in the 1450’s, and the first book to ever be printed was a Latin language Bible, printed in Mainz, Germany. Gutenberg’s Bibles were surprisingly beautiful, as each leaf Gutenberg printed was later colorfully hand-illuminated. Born as “Johann Gensfleisch” (John Gooseflesh), he preferred to be known as “Johann Gutenberg” (John Beautiful Mountain). Ironically, though he had created what many believe to be the most important invention in history, Gutenberg was a victim of unscrupulous business associates who took control of his business and left him in poverty. Nevertheless, the invention of the movable-type printing press meant that Bibles and books could finally be effectively produced in large quantities in a short period of time. This was essential to the success of the Reformation.

Thomas Linacre
In the 1490’s another Oxford professor, and the personal physician to King Henry the 7th and 8th, Thomas Linacre, decided to learn Greek. After reading the Gospels in Greek, and comparing it to the Latin Vulgate, he wrote in his diary, “Either this (the original Greek) is not the Gospel… or we are not Christians.” The Latin had become so corrupt that it no longer even preserved the message of the Gospel… yet the Church still threatened to kill anyone who read the scripture in any language other than Latin… though Latin was not an original language of the scriptures.

John Colet
In 1496, John Colet, another Oxford professor and the son of the Mayor of London, started reading the New Testament in Greek and translating it into English for his students at Oxford, and later for the public at Saint Paul’s Cathedral in London. The people were so hungry to hear the Word of God in a language they could understand, that within six months there were 20,000 people packed in the church and at least that many outside trying to get in! (Sadly, while the enormous and beautiful Saint Paul’s Cathedral remains the main church in London today, as of 2003, typical Sunday morning worship attendance is only around 200 people… and most of them are tourists). Fortunately for Colet, he was a powerful man with friends in high places, so he amazingly managed to avoid execution.

In considering the experiences of Linacre and Colet, the great scholar Erasmus was so moved to correct the corrupt Latin Vulgate, that in 1516, with the help of printer John Froben, he published a Greek-Latin Parallel New Testament. The Latin part was not the corrupt Vulgate, but his own fresh rendering of the text from the more accurate and reliable Greek, which he had managed to collate from a half-dozen partial old Greek New Testament manuscripts he had acquired. This milestone was the first non-Latin Vulgate text of the scripture to be produced in a millennium… and the first ever to come off a printing press. The 1516 Greek-Latin New Testament of Erasmus further focused attention on just how corrupt and inaccurate the Latin Vulgate had become, and how important it was to go back and use the original Greek (New Testament) and original Hebrew (Old Testament) languages to maintain accuracy… and to translate them faithfully into the languages of the common people, whether that be English, German, or any other tongue. No sympathy for this “illegal activity” was to be found from Rome, with the curious exception of the famous 1522 Complutensian Polyglot Bible, even as the words of Pope Leo X’s declaration that “the fable of Christ was quite profitable to him” continued through the years to infuriate the people of God.

William Tyndale
William Tyndale was the Captain of the Army of Reformers, and was their spiritual leader. Tyndale holds the distinction of being the first man to ever print the New Testament in the English language. Tyndale was a true scholar and a genius, so fluent in eight languages that it was said one would think any one of them to be his native tongue. He is frequently referred to as the “Architect of the English Language”, (even more so than William Shakespeare) as so many of the phrases Tyndale coined are still in our language today.

Martin Luther
Martin Luther had a small head-start on Tyndale, as Luther declared his intolerance for the Roman Church’s corruption on Halloween in 1517, by nailing his 95 Theses of Contention to the Wittenberg Church door. Luther, who would be exiled in the months following the Diet of Worms Council in 1521 that was designed to martyr him, would translate the New Testament into German for the first time from the 1516 Greek-Latin New Testament of Erasmus, and publish it in September of 1522. Luther also published a German Pentateuch in 1523, and another edition of the German New Testament in 1529. In the 1530’s he would go on to publish the entire Bible in German.

William Tyndale wanted to use the same 1516 Erasmus text as a source to translate and print the New Testament in English for the first time in history. Tyndale showed up on Luther’s doorstep in Germany in 1525, and by year’s end had translated the New Testament into English. Tyndale had been forced to flee England, because of the wide-spread rumor that his English New Testament project was underway, causing inquisitors and bounty hunters to be constantly on Tyndale’s trail to arrest him and prevent his project. God foiled their plans, and in 1525-1526 the Tyndale New Testament became the first printed edition of the scripture in the English language. Subsequent printings of the Tyndale New Testament in the 1530’s were often elaborately illustrated.

They were burned as soon as the Bishop could confiscate them, but copies trickled through and actually ended up in the bedroom of King Henry VIII. The more the King and Bishop resisted its distribution, the more fascinated the public at large became. The church declared it contained thousands of errors as they torched hundreds of New Testaments confiscated by the clergy, while in fact, they burned them because they could find no errors at all. One risked death by burning if caught in mere possession of Tyndale’s forbidden books.

Having God’s Word available to the public in the language of the common man, English, would have meant disaster to the church. No longer would they control access to the scriptures. If people were able to read the Bible in their own tongue, the church’s income and power would crumble. They could not possibly continue to get away with selling indulgences (the forgiveness of sins) or selling the release of loved ones from a church-manufactured “Purgatory”. People would begin to challenge the church’s authority if the church were exposed as frauds and thieves. The contradictions between what God’s Word said, and what the priests taught, would open the public’s eyes and the truth would set them free from the grip of fear that the institutional church held. Salvation through faith, not works or donations, would be understood. The need for priests would vanish through the priesthood of all believers. The veneration of church-canonized Saints and Mary would be called into question. The availability of the scriptures in English was the biggest threat imaginable to the wicked church. Neither side would give up without a fight.

Today, there are only two known copies left of Tyndale’s 1525-26 First Edition. Any copies printed prior to 1570 are extremely valuable. Tyndale’s flight was an inspiration to freedom-loving Englishmen who drew courage from the 11 years that he was hunted. Books and Bibles flowed into England in bales of cotton and sacks of flour. Ironically, Tyndale’s biggest customer was the King’s men, who would buy up every copy available to burn them… and Tyndale used their money to print even more! In the end, Tyndale was caught: betrayed by an Englishman that he had befriended. Tyndale was incarcerated for 500 days before he was strangled and burned at the stake in 1536. Tyndale’s last words were, “Oh Lord, open the King of England’s eyes”. This prayer would be answered just three years later in 1539, when King Henry VIII finally allowed, and even funded, the printing of an English Bible known as the “Great Bible”. But before that could happen…

Myles Coverdale
Myles Coverdale and John “Thomas Matthew” Rogers had remained loyal disciples the last six years of Tyndale’s life, and they carried the English Bible project forward and even accelerated it. Coverdale finished translating the Old Testament, and in 1535 he printed the first complete Bible in the English language, making use of Luther’s German text and the Latin as sources. Thus, the first complete English Bible was printed on October 4, 1535, and is known as the Coverdale Bible.

John Rogers
John Rogers went on to print the second complete English Bible in 1537. It was, however, the first English Bible translated from the original Biblical languages of Hebrew & Greek. He printed it under the pseudonym “Thomas Matthew”, (an assumed name that had actually been used by Tyndale at one time) as a considerable part of this Bible was the translation of Tyndale, whose writings had been condemned by the English authorities. It is a composite made up of Tyndale’s Pentateuch and New Testament (1534-1535 edition) and Coverdale’s Bible and some of Roger’s own translation of the text. It remains known most commonly as the Matthew-Tyndale Bible. It went through a nearly identical second-edition printing in 1549.

Thomas Cranmer
In 1539, Thomas Cranmer, the Archbishop of Canterbury, hired Myles Coverdale at the bequest of King Henry VIII to publish the “Great Bible”. It became the first English Bible authorized for public use, as it was distributed to every church, chained to the pulpit, and a reader was even provided so that the illiterate could hear the Word of God in plain English. It would seem that William Tyndale’s last wish had been granted…just three years after his martyrdom. Cranmer’s Bible, published by Coverdale, was known as the Great Bible due to its great size: a large pulpit folio measuring over 14 inches tall. Seven editions of this version were printed between April of 1539 and December of 1541.

King Henry VIII
It was not that King Henry VIII had a change of conscience regarding publishing the Bible in English. His motives were more sinister… but the Lord sometimes uses the evil intentions of men to bring about His glory. King Henry VIII had in fact, requested that the Pope permit him to divorce his wife and marry his mistress. The Pope refused. King Henry responded by marrying his mistress anyway, (later having two of his many wives executed), and thumbing his nose at the Pope by renouncing Roman Catholicism, taking England out from under Rome’s religious control, and declaring himself as the reigning head of State to also be the new head of the Church. This new branch of the Christian Church, neither Roman Catholic nor truly Protestant, became known as the Anglican Church or the Church of England. King Henry acted essentially as its “Pope”. His first act was to further defy the wishes of Rome by funding the printing of the scriptures in English… the first legal English Bible… just for spite.

Queen Mary
The ebb and flow of freedom continued through the 1540’s…and into the 1550’s. After King Henry VIII, King Edward VI took the throne, and after his death, the reign of Queen “Bloody” Mary was the next obstacle to the printing of the Bible in English. She was possessed in her quest to return England to the Roman Church. In 1555, John “Thomas Matthew” Rogers and Thomas Cranmer were both burned at the stake. Mary went on to burn reformers at the stake by the hundreds for the “crime” of being a Protestant. This era was known as the Marian Exile, and the refugees fled from England with little hope of ever seeing their home or friends again.

John Foxe
In the 1550’s, the Church at Geneva, Switzerland, was very sympathetic to the reformer refugees and was one of only a few safe havens for a desperate people. Many of them met in Geneva, led by Myles Coverdale and John Foxe (publisher of the famous Foxe’s Book of Martyrs, which is to this day the only exhaustive reference work on the persecution and martyrdom of Early Christians and Protestants from the first century up to the mid-16th century), as well as Thomas Sampson and William Whittingham. There, with the protection of the great theologian John Calvin (author of the most famous theological book ever published, Calvin’s Institutes of the Christian Religion)and John Knox, the great Reformer of the Scottish Church, the Church of Geneva determined to produce a Bible that would educate their families while they continued in exile.

John Calvin
The New Testament was completed in 1557, and the complete Bible was first published in 1560. It became known as the Geneva Bible. Due to a passage in Genesis describing the clothing that God fashioned for Adam and Eve upon expulsion from the Garden of Eden as “Breeches” (an antiquated form of “Britches”), some people referred to the Geneva Bible as the Breeches Bible.

John Knox
The Geneva Bible was the first Bible to add numbered verses to the chapters, so that referencing specific passages would be easier. Every chapter was also accompanied by extensive marginal notes and references so thorough and complete that the Geneva Bible is also considered the first English “Study Bible”. William Shakespeare quotes hundreds of times in his plays from the Geneva translation of the Bible. The Geneva Bible became the Bible of choice for over 100 years of English speaking Christians. Between 1560 and 1644 at least 144 editions of this Bible were published. Examination of the 1611 King James Bible shows clearly that its translators were influenced much more by the Geneva Bible, than by any other source. The Geneva Bible itself retains over 90% of William Tyndale’s original English translation. The Geneva in fact, remained more popular than the King James Version until decades after its original release in 1611! The Geneva holds the honor of being the first Bible taken to America, and the Bible of the Puritans and Pilgrims. It is truly the “Bible of the Protestant Reformation.” Strangely, the famous Geneva Bible has been out-of-print since 1644, so the only way to obtain one is to either purchase an original printing of the Geneva Bible, or a less costly facsimile reproduction of the original 1560 Geneva Bible.

With the end of Queen Mary’s bloody reign, the reformers could safely return to England. The Anglican Church, now under Queen Elizabeth I, reluctantly tolerated the printing and distribution of Geneva version Bibles in England. The marginal notes, which were vehemently against the institutional Church of the day, did not rest well with the rulers of the day. Another version, one with a less inflammatory tone was desired, and the copies of the Great Bible were getting to be decades old. In 1568, a revision of the Great Bible known as the Bishop’s Bible was introduced. Despite 19 editions being printed between 1568 and 1606, this Bible, referred to as the “rough draft of the King James Version”, never gained much of a foothold of popularity among the people. The Geneva may have simply been too much to compete with.

By the 1580’s, the Roman Catholic Church saw that it had lost the battle to suppress the will of God: that His Holy Word be available in the English language. In 1582, the Church of Rome surrendered their fight for “Latin only” and decided that if the Bible was to be available in English, they would at least have an official Roman Catholic English translation. And so, using the corrupt and inaccurate Latin Vulgate as the only source text, they went on to publish an English Bible with all the distortions and corruptions that Erasmus had revealed and warned of 75 years earlier. Because it was translated at the Roman Catholic College in the city of Rheims, it was known as the Rheims New Testament (also spelled Rhemes). The Douay Old Testament was translated by the Church of Rome in 1609 at the College in the city of Douay (also spelled Doway & Douai). The combined product is commonly referred to as the “Doway/Rheims” Version. In 1589, Dr. William Fulke of Cambridge published the “Fulke’s Refutation”, in which he printed in parallel columns the Bishops Version along side the Rheims Version, attempting to show the error and distortion of the Roman Church’s corrupt compromise of an English version of the Bible.

King James I
With the death of Queen Elizabeth I, Prince James VI of Scotland became King James I of England. The Protestant clergy approached the new King in 1604 and announced their desire for a new translation to replace the Bishop’s Bible first printed in 1568. They knew that the Geneva Version had won the hearts of the people because of its excellent scholarship, accuracy, and exhaustive commentary. However, they did not want the controversial marginal notes (proclaiming the Pope an Anti-Christ, etc.) Essentially, the leaders of the church desired a Bible for the people, with scriptural references only for word clarification or cross-references.

This “translation to end all translations” (for a while at least) was the result of the combined effort of about fifty scholars. They took into consideration: The Tyndale New Testament, The Coverdale Bible, The Matthews Bible, The Great Bible, The Geneva Bible, and even the Rheims New Testament. The great revision of the Bishop’s Bible had begun. From 1605 to 1606 the scholars engaged in private research. From 1607 to 1609 the work was assembled. In 1610 the work went to press, and in 1611 the first of the huge (16 inch tall) pulpit folios known today as “The 1611 King James Bible” came off the printing press. A typographical discrepancy in Ruth 3:15 rendered a pronoun “He” instead of “She” in that verse in some printings. This caused some of the 1611 First Editions to be known by collectors as “He” Bibles, and others as “She” Bibles. Starting just one year after the huge 1611 pulpit-size King James Bibles were printed and chained to every church pulpit in England; printing then began on the earliest normal-size printings of the King James Bible. These were produced so individuals could have their own personal copy of the Bible.

John Bunyan
The Anglican Church’s King James Bible took decades to overcome the more popular Protestant Church’s Geneva Bible. One of the greatest ironies of history, is that many Protestant Christian churches today embrace the King James Bible exclusively as the “only” legitimate English language translation… yet it is not even a Protestant translation! It was printed to compete with the Protestant Geneva Bible, by authorities who throughout most of history were hostile to Protestants… and killed them. While many Protestants are quick to assign the full blame of persecution to the Roman Catholic Church, it should be noted that even after England broke from Roman Catholicism in the 1500’s, the Church of England (The Anglican Church) continued to persecute Protestants throughout the 1600’s. One famous example of this is John Bunyan, who while in prison for the crime of preaching the Gospel, wrote one of Christian history’s greatest books, Pilgrim’s Progress. Throughout the 1600’s, as the Puritans and the Pilgrims fled the religious persecution of England to cross the Atlantic and start a new free nation in America, they took with them their precious Geneva Bible, and rejected the King’s Bible. America was founded upon the Geneva Bible, not the King James Bible.

Protestants today are largely unaware of their own history, and unaware of the Geneva Bible (which is textually 95% the same as the King James Version, but 50 years older than the King James Version, and not influenced by the Roman Catholic Rheims New Testament that the King James translators admittedly took into consideration). Nevertheless, the King James Bible turned out to be an excellent and accurate translation, and it became the most printed book in the history of the world, and the only book with one billion copies in print. In fact, for over 250 years…until the appearance of the English Revised Version of 1881-1885…the King James Version reigned without much of a rival. One little-known fact, is that for the past 250 years, all “King James Version” Bibles published anywhere by any publisher are actually Blaney’s 1769 Revised Oxford Edition of the 1611 King James Bible.
The original “1611” preface is almost always deceivingly included by modern Bible publishing companies, and no mention of the fact that it is really the 1769 version is to be found, because that might hurt sales among those imagining that they are reading the original 1611 version.

The only way to obtain a true, unaltered, 1611 version is to either purchase an original pre-1769 printing of the King James Bible, or a less costly facsimile reproduction of the original 1611 King James Bible. A first edition facsimile reproduction of Blaney’s 1769 Revised Oxford Edition of the 1611 King James Bible is also available, which exemplifies the 20,000 spelling and punctuation changes and over 400 wording changes made to the original 1611 to 1768 King James Bible, when compared to King James Bibles published between 1769 and today.

John Eliot
Although the first Bible printed in America was done in the native Algonquin Indian Language by John Eliot in 1663; the first English language Bible to be printed in America by Robert Aitken in 1782 was a King James Version. Robert Aitken’s 1782 Bible was also the only Bible ever authorized by the United States Congress. He was commended by President George Washington for providing Americans with Bibles during the embargo of imported English goods due to the Revolutionary War. In 1808, Robert’s daughter, Jane Aitken, would become the first woman to ever print a Bible… and to do so in America, of course. In 1791, Isaac Collins vastly improved upon the quality and size of the typesetting of American Bibles and produced the first “Family Bible” printed in America… also a King James Version. Also in 1791, Isaiah Thomas published the first Illustrated Bible printed in America…in the King James Version. For more information on the earliest Bibles printed in America from the 1600’s through the early 1800’s, you may wish to review our more detailed discussion of The Bibles of Colonial America.

Noah Webster
While Noah Webster, just a few years after producing his famous Dictionary of the English Language, would produce his own modern translation of the English Bible in 1833; the public remained too loyal to the King James Version for Webster’s version to have much impact. It was not really until the 1880’s that England’s own planned replacement for their King James Bible, the English Revised Version(E.R.V.) would become the first English language Bible to gain popular acceptance as a post-King James Version modern-English Bible. The widespread popularity of this modern-English translation brought with it another curious characteristic: the absence of the 14 Apocryphal books.

Up until the 1880’s every Protestant Bible (not just Catholic Bibles) had 80 books, not 66! The inter-testamental books written hundreds of years before Christ called “The Apocrypha” were part of virtually every printing of the Tyndale-Matthews Bible, the Great Bible, the Bishops Bible, the Protestant Geneva Bible, and the King James Bible until their removal in the 1880’s! The original 1611 King James contained the Apocrypha, and King James threatened anyone who dared to print the Bible without the Apocrypha with heavy fines and a year in jail. Only for the last 120 years has the Protestant Church rejected these books, and removed them from their Bibles. This has left most modern-day Christians believing the popular myth that there is something “Roman Catholic” about the Apocrypha. There is, however, no truth in that myth, and no widely-accepted reason for the removal of the Apocrypha in the 1880’s has ever been officially issued by a mainline Protestant denomination.

The Americans responded to England’s E.R.V. Bible by publishing the nearly-identical American Standard Version (A.S.V.) in 1901. It was also widely-accepted and embraced by churches throughout America for many decades as the leading modern-English version of the Bible. In the 1971, it was again revised and called New American Standard Version Bible (often referred to as the N.A.S.V. or N.A.S.B. or N.A.S.). This New American Standard Bible is considered by nearly all evangelical Christian scholars and translators today, to be the most accurate, word-for-word translation of the original Greek and Hebrew scriptures into the modern English language that has ever been produced. It remains the most popular version among theologians, professors, scholars, and seminary students today. Some, however, have taken issue with it because it is so direct and literal a translation (focused on accuracy), that it does not flow as easily in conversational English.

For this reason, in 1973, the New International Version (N.I.V.) was produced, which was offered as a “dynamic equivalent” translation into modern English. The N.I.V. was designed not for “word-for-word” accuracy, but rather, for “phrase-for-phrase” accuracy, and ease of reading even at a Junior High-School reading level. It was meant to appeal to a broader (and in some instances less-educated) cross-section of the general public. Critics of the N.I.V. often jokingly refer to it as the “Nearly Inspired Version”, but that has not stopped it from becoming the best-selling modern-English translation of the Bible ever published.

In 1982, Thomas Nelson Publishers produced what they called the “New King James Version”. Their original intent was to keep the basic wording of the King James to appeal to King James Version loyalists, while only changing the most obscure words and the Elizabethan “thee, thy, thou” pronouns. This was an interesting marketing ploy, however, upon discovering that this was not enough of a change for them to be able to legally copyright the result, they had to make more significant revisions, which defeated their purpose in the first place. It was never taken seriously by scholars, but it has enjoyed some degree of public acceptance, simply because of its clever “New King James Version” marketing name.

In 2002, a major attempt was made to bridge the gap between the simple readability of the N.I.V., and the extremely precise accuracy of the N.A.S.B. This translation is called the English Standard Version (E.S.V.) and is rapidly gaining popularity for its readability and accuracy. The 21st Century will certainly continue to bring new translations of God’s Word in the modern English language.

As Christians, we must be very careful to make intelligent and informed decisions about what translations of the Bible we choose to read. On the liberal extreme, we have people who would give us heretical new translations that attempt to change God’s Word to make it politically correct. One example of this, which has made headlines recently is the Today’s New International Version (T.N.I.V.) which seeks to remove all gender-specific references in the Bible whenever possible! Not all new translations are good… and some are very bad.

But equally dangerous, is the other extreme… of blindly rejecting ANY English translation that was produced in the four centuries that have come after the 1611 King James. We must remember that the main purpose of the Protestant Reformation was to get the Bible out of the chains of being trapped in an ancient language that few could understand, and into the modern, spoken, conversational language of the present day. William Tyndale fought and died for the right to print the Bible in the common, spoken, modern English tongue of his day… as he boldly told one official who criticized his efforts, “If God spare my life, I will see to it that the boy who drives the plowshare knows more of the scripture than you, Sir!”

Will we now go backwards, and seek to imprison God’s Word once again exclusively in ancient translations? Clearly it is not God’s will that we over-react to SOME of the bad modern translations, by rejecting ALL new translations and “throwing the baby out with the bathwater”. The Word of God is unchanging from generation to generation, but language is a dynamic and ever-changing form of communication. We therefore have a responsibility before God as Christians to make sure that each generation has a modern translation that they can easily understand, yet that does not sacrifice accuracy in any way. Let’s be ever mindful that we are not called to worship the Bible. That is called idolatry. We are called to worship the God who gave us the Bible, and who preserved it through the centuries of people who sought to destroy it.

We are also called to preserve the ancient, original English translations of the Bible… and that is what we do here at WWW.GREATSITE.COM

Consider the following textual comparison of the earliest English translations of John 3:16, as shown in the English Hexapla Parallel New Testament:

1st Ed. King James (1611): “For God so loued the world, that he gaue his only begotten Sonne: that whosoeuer beleeueth in him, should not perish, but haue euerlasting life.”
Rheims (1582): “For so God loued the vvorld, that he gaue his only-begotten sonne: that euery one that beleeueth in him, perish not, but may haue life euerlasting”
Geneva (1560): “For God so loueth the world, that he hath geuen his only begotten Sonne: that none that beleue in him, should peryshe, but haue euerlasting lyfe.”
Great Bible (1539): “For God so loued the worlde, that he gaue his only begotten sonne, that whosoeuer beleueth in him, shulde not perisshe, but haue euerlasting lyfe.”
Tyndale (1534): “For God so loveth the worlde, that he hath geven his only sonne, that none that beleve in him, shuld perisshe: but shuld have everlastinge lyfe.”
Wycliff (1380): “for god loued so the world; that he gaf his oon bigetun sone, that eche man that bileueth in him perisch not: but haue euerlastynge liif,”
Anglo-Saxon Proto-English Manuscripts (995 AD): “God lufode middan-eard swa, dat he seade his an-cennedan sunu, dat nan ne forweorde de on hine gely ac habbe dat ece lif.”
Timeline of Bible Translation History

1,400 BC: The first written Word of God: The Ten Commandments delivered to Moses.

500 BC: Completion of All Original Hebrew Manuscripts which make up The 39 Books of the Old Testament.

200 BC: Completion of the Septuagint Greek Manuscripts which contain The 39 Old Testament Books AND 14 Apocrypha Books.

1st Century AD: Completion of All Original Greek Manuscripts which make up The 27 Books of the New Testament.

315 AD: Athenasius, the Bishop of Alexandria, identifies the 27 books of the New Testament which are today recognized as the canon of scripture.

382 AD: Jerome’s Latin Vulgate Manuscripts Produced which contain All 80 Books (39 Old Test. + 14 Apocrypha + 27 New Test).

500 AD: Scriptures have been Translated into Over 500 Languages.

600 AD: LATIN was the Only Language Allowed for Scripture.

995 AD: Anglo-Saxon (Early Roots of English Language) Translations of The New Testament Produced.

1384 AD: Wycliffe is the First Person to Produce a (Hand-Written) manuscript Copy of the Complete Bible; All 80 Books.

1455 AD: Gutenberg Invents the Printing Press; Books May Now be mass-Produced Instead of Individually Hand-Written. The First Book Ever Printed is Gutenberg’s Bible in Latin.

1516 AD: Erasmus Produces a Greek/Latin Parallel New Testament.

1522 AD: Martin Luther’s German New Testament.

1526 AD: William Tyndale’s New Testament; The First New Testament printed in the English Language.

1535 AD: Myles Coverdale’s Bible; The First Complete Bible printed in the English Language (80 Books: O.T. & N.T. & Apocrypha).

1537 AD: Tyndale-Matthews Bible; The Second Complete Bible printed in English. Done by John “Thomas Matthew” Rogers (80 Books).

1539 AD: The “Great Bible” Printed; The First English Language Bible Authorized for Public Use (80 Books).

1560 AD: The Geneva Bible Printed; The First English Language Bible to add Numbered Verses to Each Chapter (80 Books).

1568 AD: The Bishops Bible Printed; The Bible of which the King James was a Revision (80 Books).

1609 AD: The Douay Old Testament is added to the Rheims New Testament (of 1582) Making the First Complete English Catholic Bible; Translated from the Latin Vulgate (80 Books).

1611 AD: The King James Bible Printed; Originally with All 80 Books. The Apocrypha was Officially Removed in 1885 Leaving Only 66 Books.

1782 AD: Robert Aitken’s Bible; The First English Language Bible (KJV) Printed in America.

1791 AD: Isaac Collins and Isaiah Thomas Respectively Produce the First Family Bible and First Illustrated Bible Printed in America. Both were King James Versions, with All 80 Books.

1808 AD: Jane Aitken’s Bible (Daughter of Robert Aitken); The First Bible to be Printed by a Woman.

1833 AD: Noah Webster’s Bible; After Producing his Famous Dictionary, Webster Printed his Own Revision of the King James Bible.

1841 AD: English Hexapla New Testament; an Early Textual Comparison showing the Greek and 6 Famous English Translations in Parallel Columns.

1846 AD: The Illuminated Bible; The Most Lavishly Illustrated Bible printed in America. A King James Version, with All 80 Books.

1863 AD: Robert Young’s “Literal” Translation; often criticized for being so literal that it sometimes obscures the contextual English meaning.

1885 AD: The “English Revised Version” Bible; The First Major English Revision of the KJV.

1901 AD: The “American Standard Version”; The First Major American Revision of the KJV.

1952 AD: The “Revised Standard Version” (RSV); said to be a Revision of the 1901 American Standard Version, though more highly criticized.

1971 AD: The “New American Standard Bible” (NASB) is Published as a “Modern and Accurate Word for Word English Translation” of the Bible.

1973 AD: The “New International Version” (NIV) is Published as a “Modern and Accurate Phrase for Phrase English Translation” of the Bible.

1982 AD: The “New King James Version” (NKJV) is Published as a “Modern English Version Maintaining the Original Style of the King James.”

1990 AD: The “New Revised Standard Version” (NRSV); further revision of 1952 RSV, (itself a revision of 1901 ASV), criticized for “gender inclusiveness”.

2002 AD: The English Standard Version (ESV) is Published as a translation to bridge the gap between the accuracy of the NASB and the readability of the NIV.

This English Bible History Article & Timeline is ©2017 by author & editor: John L. Jeffcoat III. Special thanks is also given to Dr. Craig H. Lampe for his valuable contributions to the text. This page may be freely reproduced or quoted, in whole or in part, in print or electronically, under the one condition that prominent credit must be given to “WWW.GREATSITE.COM” as the source.

66 God’s Plan For The Ages – About Israel – Ezekiel 11 – Visions: Wicked Princes and Departing Glory

“Be still, and know that I am God” Psalm 46:10

Angus Dei – Michael W Smith and The Prestonwood Choir

No More Night

I Then Shall Live – Prestonwood Choir

Consider God

“God is love” 1 John 4:8 – New American Standard 1977

Consider God’s love for Israel

“I have loved you with an everlasting love” Jeremiah 31:3 – New American Standard 1977

The Prophecy Of The Messiah

What does Daniel 9:27 tell us about when the Messiah would come?

Consider God and Ezekiel


Lesson Preview

Ezekiel Chapter 11

Date: 594 B.C. (Scofield Study Bible)

Place: Ezekiel in exile in Babylon; his visions of Jerusalem, in the Southern Kingdom Of Judah and during the Millennium.

Consider the following verses that illumine the relationship that existed between God and Ezekiel.

Ezekiel Chapter 11

vs 1, 2, 4, 13, 14, 24, 25 (Key phrases of each verse)

Ezekiel 11:1 New American Standard 1977 Bible Hub
“Moreover, the Spirit lifted me up and brought me to the east gate of the LORD’s house which faced eastward”
Ezekiel 11:2 New American Standard 1977 Bible Hub
“And He said to me, “Son of man, these are the men who devise iniquity and give evil advice in this city”
Ezekiel 11:4 New American Standard 1977 Bible Hub
“Therefore, prophesy against them, son of man, prophesy!”
Ezekiel 11:13 New American Standard 1977 Bible Hub
“Now it came about as I prophesied, that Pelatiah son of Benaiah died. Then I fell on my face and cried out with a loud voice and said, “Alas, Lord GOD! Wilt Thou bring the remnant of Israel to a complete end?”
Ezekiel 11:14 New American Standard 1977 Bible Hub
“Then the word of the LORD came to me, saying,”
Ezekiel 11:24 New American Standard 1977 Bible Hub
“And the Spirit lifted me up and brought me in a vision by the Spirit of God to the exiles in Chaldea. So the vision that I had seen left me”
Ezekiel 11:25 New American Standard 1977 Bible Hub
“Then I told the exiles all the things that the LORD had shown me.”

Consider the honor that Ezekiel was given in visions by God, in that he was allowed to see the Glory of God departing the temple in Jerusalem (Ezekiel 11:23), and that he was allowed to see the Glory of God returning to the temple again, also in Jerusalem during the Millennium (1,000 year reign of Christ, Revelation 20:4). It will not be until the time that the Millennial temple is present, that the Glory of God will return to the temple (Ezekiel 43:1-5). Even though the temple will be rebuilt (515 B.C.), after the Jews return to Jerusalem, after having spent 70 in exile in Babylon, the Glory of God will not return to any man-made temple (1 Corinthians 3:16-17). The vision of Ezekiel 43 will not occur until after the tribulation and the second coming of Christ to earth have taken place (Zechariah 14:1-16, Revelation 19:11-21, Matthew 24:29-31). Present in the Millennial temple will be God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy Spirit (Ezekiel 43:1-7; 44:4-5; Revelation 20:4-6).

Ezekiel’s vision of the Glory of God departing the temple in Jerusalem, and returning to the return to the temple

Ezekiel was taken captive to Babylon in 597 B.C., in the first of three deportations of Jews from Jerusalem. Ezekiel’s vision of the destruction of the temple took place in 594 B.C. The temple was destroyed by the Babylonians in 586 B.C (2 Kings 25:8-11/2 Chronicles 36:19). The story of the deportations of Jews by the forces of Babylonian King Nebuchadnezzar, and of the destruction by his forces of the temple and city of Jerusalem, can be found in 2 Kings 24-25, and 2 Chronicles 36:5-21.

Ezekiel 11:23 New American Standard Bible (NASB) (Bible Gateway) 1995

23 The glory of the Lord went up from the midst of the city and stood over the mountain which is east of the city.

Ezekiel 43:1-5 New American Standard Bible (NASB) Bible Gateway 1995

Vision of the Glory of God Filling the Temple

1 Then he led me to the gate, the gate facing toward the east; 2 and behold, the glory of the God of Israel was coming from the way of the east. And His voice was like the sound of many waters; and the earth shone with His glory. 3 And it was like the appearance of the vision which I saw, like the vision which I saw when He came to destroy the city. And the visions were like the vision which I saw by the river Chebar; and I fell on my face. 4 And the glory of the Lord came into the house by the way of the gate facing toward the east. 5 And the Spirit lifted me up and brought me into the inner court; and behold, the glory of the Lord filled the house.

Consider the diary of God that illumines your relationship with Him.

Lesson Text: Ezekiel Chapter 11

Ezekiel 11 New American Standard Bible (NASB) 1995

Evil Rulers to Be Judged

1 Moreover, the Spirit lifted me up and brought me to the east gate of the Lord’s house which faced eastward. And behold, there were twenty-five men at the entrance of the gate, and among them I saw Jaazaniah son of Azzur and Pelatiah son of Benaiah, leaders of the people. 2 He said to me, “Son of man, these are the men who devise iniquity and give evil advice in this city, 3 who say, ‘The time is not near to build houses. This city is the pot and we are the flesh.’ 4 Therefore, prophesy against them, son of man, prophesy!”

5 Then the Spirit of the Lord fell upon me, and He said to me, “Say, ‘Thus says the Lord, “So you think, house of Israel, for I know your thoughts. 6 You have multiplied your slain in this city, filling its streets with them.” 7 Therefore, thus says the Lord God, “Your slain whom you have laid in the midst of the city are the flesh and this city is the pot; but I will bring you out of it. 8 You have feared a sword; so I will bring a sword upon you,” the Lord God declares. 9 “And I will bring you out of the midst of the city and deliver you into the hands of strangers and execute judgments against you. 10 You will fall by the sword. I will judge you to the border of Israel; so you shall know that I am the Lord. 11 This city will not be a pot for you, nor will you be flesh in the midst of it, but I will judge you to the border of Israel. 12 Thus you will know that I am the Lord; for you have not walked in My statutes nor have you executed My ordinances, but have acted according to the ordinances of the nations around you.”’”

13 Now it came about as I prophesied, that Pelatiah son of Benaiah died. Then I fell on my face and cried out with a loud voice and said, “Alas, Lord God! Will You bring the remnant of Israel to a complete end?”

Promise of Restoration

14 Then the word of the Lord came to me, saying, 15 “Son of man, your brothers, your relatives, your fellow exiles and the whole house of Israel, all of them, are those to whom the inhabitants of Jerusalem have said, ‘Go far from the Lord; this land has been given us as a possession.’ 16 Therefore say, ‘Thus says the Lord God, “Though I had removed them far away among the nations and though I had scattered them among the countries, yet I was a sanctuary for them a little while in the countries where they had gone.”’ 17 Therefore say, ‘Thus says the Lord God, “I will gather you from the peoples and assemble you out of the countries among which you have been scattered, and I will give you the land of Israel.”’ 18 When they come there, they will remove all its detestable things and all its abominations from it. 19 And I will give them one heart, and put a new spirit within them. And I will take the heart of stone out of their flesh and give them a heart of flesh, 20 that they may walk in My statutes and keep My ordinances and do them. Then they will be My people, and I shall be their God. 21 But as for those whose hearts go after their detestable things and abominations, I will bring their conduct down on their heads,” declares the Lord God.

22 Then the cherubim lifted up their wings with the wheels beside them, and the glory of the God of Israel hovered over them. 23 The glory of the Lord went up from the midst of the city and stood over the mountain which is east of the city. 24 And the Spirit lifted me up and brought me in a vision by the Spirit of God to the exiles in Chaldea. So the vision that I had seen left me. 25 Then I told the exiles all the things that the Lord had shown me.

Notes – Ezekiel Chapter 11 – MacArthur Study Bible (Everybody should own a MacArthur Study Bible) Bible Gateway

11:1 twenty-five men. Ezekiel, though at the temple only in the vision (cf. 8:3, and see note there), saw because God, who was everywhere present and all-knowing, impressed specific details on him in the vision. The wicked leaders (cf. v. 2) were part of God’s reason for the judgment (vv. 8, 10). Ezekiel was taken in spirit to the very place which the glory of God had left in 10:19 and was given a vision of “twenty-five men,” who represented, not priests, but influential leaders among the people, who gave fatal advice to the people (v. 2). Jaazaniah the son of Azzur. See note on 8:11.
11:3 caldron…meat. Though this is obscure, it may be that the bad advice these leaders were giving was that the people should not be engaged in business as usual, “building houses” or taking care of their comfort and futures, when they were about to be cooked like meat in a pot over a blazing fire. The idea must have been that the people should get ready for battle, and be prepared to fight, not focusing on comfort, but survival. Jeremiah had told the people to surrender to the Babylonians and save their lives, rather than fight and be killed (cf. Jer. 27:9–17). These false leaders, like the prophets and priests whom Jeremiah confronted for telling the people not to submit, scorned Jeremiah’s words from God and would pay for it (v. 4). Cf. 24:1–14.
11:6 multiplied your slain. Leaders who misled Israel by inciting false expectations of a victorious defense, rather than peaceful surrender, were responsible for the deadly results. Many people died in resisting Babylon.
11:7 I shall bring you out. The false leaders thought that unless they fought, they would all be in a caldron, i.e., the city. But here the Lord promised that some would be delivered from the city, only to die on Israel’s border in the wilderness (vv. 8–11). This was literally fulfilled at Riblah (cf. 2 Kin. 25:18–21; Jer. 52:24–27).
11:13 Pelatiah…died. The death of one leader from v. 1 was a sign that God would indeed carry out His word. Apparently this leader did die suddenly at the time Ezekiel was shown the vision, so that the prophet feared that this death meant death for all Israelites (9:8).
11:14, 15 Ezekiel was told he had a new family, not the priests at Jerusalem to whom he was tied by blood, but his fellow exiles in Babylon, identified as those who were treated as outcasts. The priesthood was about to be ended and he was to have a new family.
11:15 Get far away. The contemptuous words of those still left in Jerusalem at the carrying away of Jeconiah and the exiles indicated that they felt smugly secure and believed the land was their possession.
11:16 little sanctuary. This is better rendered “for a little while,” i.e., however long the captivity lasted. God was to be the protection and provision for those who had been scattered through all the 70 years until they were restored. The exiles may have cast off the Jews, but God had not (Is. 8:14). This holds true for the future restoration of the Jews (vv. 17, 18).
11:19, 20 a new spirit. God pledged not only to restore Ezekiel’s people to their ancient land, but to bring the New Covenant with its blessings. Cf. 36:25–28, and see note on Jer. 31:31–34.
11:23 the mountain…east. The glory of God moved to the Mt. of Olives to which the glorious Son of God will return at the Second Advent (cf. 43:1–5; Zech. 14:4).
11:24 brought me in a vision. Again, Ezekiel has remained bodily in his Babylonian house, seen by his visitors (v. 25; 8:1). God, who supernaturally showed him a vision in Jerusalem, caused his sense of awareness to return to Chaldea, thus ending the vision state. Once the vision was completed, Ezekiel was able to tell his exiled countrymen what God had shown him (v. 25).

Comments related to this post.

The book of Ezekiel show’s God’s prophetic purposes being fulfilled in the lives and nation of Israel. Jimmy DeYoung has called the book of Ezekiel, “the timeline of the Jews,” and the Book of Daniel, “the timeline of the Gentiles.”

Purpose of Writing:

Ezekiel ministered to his generation who were both exceedingly sinful and thoroughly hopeless. By means of his prophetic ministry he attempted to bring them to immediate repentance and to confidence in the distant future. He taught that: (1) God works through human messengers; (2) Even in defeat and despair God’s people need to affirm God’s sovereignty; (3) God’s Word never fails; (4) God is present and can be worshiped anywhere; (5) People must obey God if they expect to receive blessings; and (6) God’s Kingdom will come.

For information that relates to the preparation of this post, and to sources of information, please click onto the following link.

65 – The Thief In Heaven

The Anchor Holds – First Baptist Church Jacksonville, FL

Marriage of the Lamb – First Baptist Church Jacksonville, FL

Luke 23:42-43J.B. Phillips New Testament (PHILLIPS)

42 Then he said, “Jesus, remember me when you come into your kingdom.”

43 And Jesus answered, “I tell you truly, this day you will be with me in paradise.”

The above short conversation took place when Christ and a thief were hanging “side by side” on a cross in Jerusalem. Both knew that death was imminent. Our Lord, God the Son, knew that after His death he would be in the Presence of God the Father. The thief, based on His exhibited faith in Christ, knew that he could be saved from the eternal absence from God, and be placed in God’s immediate Presence. So, the thief “called on the Name of the Lord” (Romans 10:13). Based on this introduction, let’s continue with our discussion of whether the thief ended up that day in Heaven, or in Paradise. Let’s consider a key verse of this whole discussion.

Key verse: John 3:3

New American Standard Bible

Jesus answered and said to him, “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born again he cannot see the kingdom of God.”

When we consider Heaven, the thought is often related to the “eternal state,” which occurs after the Great White Throne Judgment (for unrighteous people) has taken place (Revelation 20:11-15). In the eternal state we find the New Heaven and New Earth and New Jerusalem (Revelation 21:1-2). The eternal state is the place where all born again, righteous, saints of God will spend their eternity, in the Presence of God. That is the place where the thief on the cross will be found, but not yet. All righteous, born again saints of God/believers in Christ, will find their place with the thief on the cross, “in the eternal state,” where all of the saints of God, of all of the ages, will be present and will see the face of God (Rev 22:4). (Repetition was used here to ensure that all designations of: righteous, born again, saints of God, believers in Christ relate to the same group of people who will spend their eternity in the eternal state with God.)

The normal usage of “heaven,” as is spoken today, relates to the place of “righteous spirits,” whether they are of righteous people who may be alive, dead, resurrected or caught up and in the Presence of God (Father, Son, Holy Spirit). So, let’s consider the word, “spirit.”

1 Thessalonians 5:23 New American Standard Bible

“Now may the God of peace Himself sanctify you entirely; and may your spirit and soul and body be preserved complete, without blame at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ.”

Spirit, soul and body. The body is our “fingers, toes and nose, etc.” Soul relates to our “mind,” our emotions, our intellect, in essence, it is “who we are,” the three words of a lady who is now in the Presence of God. I like to say that my spirit is in the center of my chest, immediately above my heart. I often make a fist and pound it on the heart area of my chest, and say, “God (Father, Son, Holy Spirit), I know that you’re there; thank you!” Our spirit is that part of us that prompts our mind to thoughts of righteousness or unrighteousness, depending on whether we have been born again, which is actually, “whether our spirit has been born again.” We have no control over our spirit. If our spirit has been born again, God will prompt our mind to righteous thoughts. If we have not been born again, Satan prompts our mind to unrighteous thoughts. Those who have not been born again, have no Godly wisdom residing within them. A born-again believer in Christ is the recipient of God’s wisdom, and receives His wisdom each and every day of life (John 16:7-11). So, let’s consider the reason that our mind is so easily swayed. We must go back to the Garden Of Eden.

After the creation of the world by God (Elohim), we read the following:

Genesis 1:21 New American Standard Bible

“God saw all that He had made, and behold, it was very good. And there was evening and there was morning, the sixth day.”

Yes! Everything in the garden, in creation everywhere, was “very good.” All remained “very good” until the sin of Adam and Eve (Gen 3:6), and the curse that quickly followed (Gen 3:8-22), which was a curse on all of God’s creation. Up until the time of the sin of Adam and Eve, there was total perfection in the Garden. There was no sickness or death. Alligators didn’t eat little dogs, etc. There were no imperfections of storms, earthquakes, etc. But, after the sin of Adam and Eve, sin and death entered the world, with catastrophic results.

Romans 5:12 GOD’S WORD® Translation

“Sin came into the world through one person, and death came through sin. So death spread to everyone, because everyone sinned.”

We can also see that, today, the state of nature is no longer present in the world, as it was in the is no longer perfect. The perfect state of mankind (body, soul and spirit), also became cursed. The mind and body entered a death spiral upon conception. Our spirit does not die; it is eternal. It’s eternal place depends on its state, whether it is righteous or unrighteous. Upon the moment that we were conceived, our mind and body began developing (sorry pro-choice people; check out Dr. Louis Pasteur’s “Law of Biogenesis;” life comes from existing life.”) …Each of us is flawed at birth, due to the curse, even in our embryonic state. Within each embryo is a mature spirit, that has been flawed. A body and soul are developing. Life comes from life, due to the “life” that is present in each sperm and egg. That life will come into our world, and will find its way to death (body and soul). The spirit will have a flawed and unrighteous presence, which will exist into eternity, unless it is made righteous. A righteous and non-flawed spirit comes from our spirit being born again (John 3:3), which is a result of the action of God’s Holy Spirit (John 3:8).

Consider the following verses that show a transition from flawed sinner to perfected saint of God.

John 1:29 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

“The next day he *saw Jesus coming to him and *said, “Behold, the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world!”

The sin of the world that needs to be taken away, which will allow unsaved people to have eternal life with Christ, “is the sin of unbelief.”

John 3:16-18 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

16 “For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life. 17 For God did not send the Son into the world to judge the world, but that the world might be saved through Him. 18 He who believes in Him is not judged; he who does not believe has been judged already, because he has not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.”

belief in Christ (vs 16) or unbelief (vs 18). Belief results in eternal life with Christ. Unbelief results in condemnation, such as is shown in the tribulation (Revelation 6-18 Judgments of God), and in the lake of fire (final and eternal judgment)

John 3:3 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

3 Jesus answered and said to him, “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born again he cannot see the kingdom of God.”

John 3:8 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

8 The wind blows where it wishes and you hear the sound of it, but do not know where it comes from and where it is going; so is everyone who is born of the Spirit.”

God’s Holy Spirit causes the new birth to happen.

If you believe in Christ, you have been born again. If you have been born again, you believe in Christ.

Ephesians 2:8-9 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

8 For by grace you have been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God; 9 not as a result of works, so that no one may boast.

A simple faith in Christ as Lord and Savior makes all of the above happen (John 1:29 to Ephesians 2:8-9).

The following things happen after a person has been born again.

Our spirit dwells with the spirit of Father/Son/Holy Spirit

John 14:20 New American Standard Bible – This verse relates to the knowledge that the Apostles will have after the resurrection of Christ. This intermingling of Spirits includes the spirits of all born again believers of all times.

“In that day you will know that I am in My Father, and you in Me, and I in you.”

Romans 8:1 New American Standard Bible – After we have been born again, no condemnation of God, awaits any believer in Christ.

“Therefore there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus.”

2 Corinthians 5:8 New American Standard Bible – Upon the deaths of believers, their souls and spirits are in the Presence of God
“we are of good courage, I say, and prefer rather to be absent from the body and to be at home with the Lord.”

2 Corinthians 5:10 Holman Christian Standard Bible (HCSB) Relate vs 8 to vs 10. In vs 8 Paul is discussing where believers will be, if they are not in the body, whether by death, resurrection or rapture. From vs 10, the next step is the marriage of the Lamb, Rev 19:7, where the raptured and resurrected saints of God, step out from Heaven (Paradise/3rd Heaven/Presence of God), with Christ and begin their descent to earth for the Battle of Armageddon (Rev 19 11-21). More of the discussion of things related to the return of Christ to earth will be discussed later on in this post.

10 For we must all appear before the tribunal of Christ, so that each may be repaid for what he has done in the body, whether good or worthless.

2 Corinthians 5:17 New American Standard Bible – Upon new birth, the saint has a new spirit which will prompt the believer to righteous living. The original, sinful spirit, has passed away; it will no more prompt the believer to unrighteousness.

“Therefore if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creature; the old things passed away; behold, new things have come.”

2 Corinthians 5:21 New American Standard Bible – Upon our new birth, Christ has taken our sin on Him, making Him to be “sin” (not a sinner) so that He can take sin’s judgment. Our spirit of sin has been replaced by a spirit that is as perfect as the Spirit of Christ.

“He made Him who knew no sin to be sin on our behalf, so that we might become the righteousness of God in Him.”

Colossians 1:27 New American Standard Bible – After we have been born again, the Spirit of Christ dwells within our born again spirits.

“to whom God willed to make known what is the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles, which is Christ in you, the hope of glory.”

1 John 5:19 New American Standard Bible – This verse explains that which makes it all possible for us to be “in God.” Until we were born again, we were “darkness.” Upon our new birth, we became “light.” Without the new birth, we would have continued to be “darkness,” and would not have been permitted to be “in God.” (John 1:9)

“This is the message we have heard from Him and announce to you, that God is Light, and in Him there is no darkness at all.”

Now, let’s consider Lazarus and the rich man.

Luke 16:22-23 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

22 Now the poor man died and was carried away by the angels to Abraham’s bosom; and the rich man also died and was buried. 23 In Hades he lifted up his eyes, being in torment, and *saw Abraham far away and Lazarus in his bosom.

In the following discussion, “Kingdom of God,” and “Millennial reign of Christ,” both relate to the same thousand year period which immediately follows the tribulation and second coming of Christ to earth. A saint is any righteous person. A righteous person is anyone whose spirit has been born again. Tribulation is the time of the judgment of God on unrighteous people, which is also known as “the 70th week of Daniel, which follows the rapture of the church, and ends when Christ returns to earth with His raptured saints.

Lazarus was the righteous poor man. He died and was taken to the bosom of Abraham, which is the Old Testament name for the Presence of God. The rich unrighteous man died, and was placed in Hades (see note below), which is the place of death for unrighteous people, where their souls and spirits remain until the bodily resurrection of unrighteous people takes place at the end of the Kingdom of God (Revelation 20:5). The translation of “hell” is incorrectly used in Luke 16 in some translations. In Luke 16, both of the bodies (Lazarus and rich man) are in the grave. Notice that both men are conscious of their surroundings, with the rich man being in torment, experiencing “God’s condemnation.” His next stop is the resurrection of the unrighteous (Rev 20:5), with the Great White Throne Judgment and the lake of fire soon to follow (Revelation 20:11-15). Lazarus was also conscious of His surroundings, and was having “the time of His life,” in the Presence of God. His next stop is the resurrection of the Old Testament saints (Rev 20:4). (The Old Testament lasts until the crucifixion of Christ; “it is finished,” John 19:30.) At the resurrection of the saints, which is at the end of the tribulation, and at the beginning of the Kingdom of God, the bodies of the Old Testament saints, and tribulation saints, will be resurrected, and reunited with their souls and spirits. All righteous saints (Old Testament, New Testament and Tribulation), will go through the Kingdom, and then enter the eternal state, Rev 21:1-7. These saints are over-comers through their faith in Christ (1 John 5:4).

MacArthur Study Bible note, Dr. John MacArthur.
Luke 16:23. “Hades” was the Gr. term for the abode of the dead. In the LXX, it was used to translate the Heb. Sheol, which referred to the realm of the dead in general, without necessarily distinguishing between righteous or unrighteous souls. However, in NT usage, “Hades” always refers to the place of the wicked prior to final judgment in hell. The imagery Jesus used paralleled the common rabbinical idea that Sheol had two parts, one for the souls of the righteous and the other for the souls of the wicked—separated by an impassable gulf.

Before we arrive at the cross, where the conversation took place between Christ and the thief (also on the cross), we must consider two occurrences that took place, that use the words, “Paradise and third Heaven.”

To set the stage, we must consider a passage where the Apostle Paul is taken up to the third heaven, also called Paradise, while he is still alive. Paul is talking about himself. He mentions Paradise and the third heaven as being the location of God.

2 Corinthians 12:1-4 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

Paul’s Vision

1 Boasting is necessary, though it is not profitable; but I will go on to visions and revelations of the Lord. 2 I know a man in Christ who fourteen years ago—whether in the body I do not know, or out of the body I do not know, God knows—such a man was caught up to the third heaven. 3 And I know how such a man—whether in the body or apart from the body I do not know, God knows— 4 was caught up into Paradise and heard inexpressible words, which a man is not permitted to speak.

Paul’s conversation with God follows.

2 Corinthians 12:8-9 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

8 Concerning this I implored the Lord three times that it might leave me. 9 And He has said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for power is perfected in weakness.” Most gladly, therefore, I will rather boast about my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may dwell in me.

Consider the three heavens.

1 Corinthians 15:40 King James Bible – The first heaven is terrestrial, and is where birds fly. The second heaven is celestial, and is where space ships fly. The third heaven is where God resides, and is also known as Paradise. The third heaven is where Paul was taken, and is generally known as Heaven.

“There are also celestial bodies, and bodies terrestrial”

Heaven, the third heaven, the location of God, is also the place where the born again, new testament, believers in Christ will be taken when the rapture of the church takes place. (Rapture: English for “caught up, snatch away.” Latin, rapio. Greek, harpazo). Remember that these are the bodies of New Testament saints, and are not of Old Testament saints. Those caught up, will have their bodies, whether in the grave or alive, to be caught up to the third heaven, where their bodies, souls and spirits will be taken to the judgment seat of Christ for rewards and the marriage of the lamb.

1 Thessalonians 4:16-17 New American Standard Bible (NASB) (also, 1 Cor 15:50-54 and John 14:1-3)

16 For the Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel and with the trumpet of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first. 17 Then we who are alive and remain will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air, and so we shall always be with the Lord.

2 Corinthians 5:10 Holman Christian Standard Bible (HCSB) – Works are judged. This is not a place for determining the salvation of believers; that took place at the time of the new birth. These believers are the church, the bride of Christ. They are treated with the respect of a cherished bride, the bride of all brides, by Christ, the bridegroom of all bridegrooms. Eph 5:25, “Husbands love your wives.” Christ is not going to humiliate His bride prior to the marriage of the Lamb, which will take place in Heaven at the end of the tribulation, when Christ and His bride begin their ascent to earth at His second coming to earth. Neither will Christ cause His bride to go through the judgments of the tribulation. (The bride of Christ can not be in Heaven, and on earth, at the same time.)

10 For we must all appear before the tribunal of Christ, so that each may be repaid for what he has done in the body, whether good or worthless.

Revelation 19:7-21 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

Marriage of the Lamb

7 Let us rejoice and be glad and give the glory to Him, for the marriage of the Lamb has come and His bride has made herself ready.” 8 It was given to her to clothe herself in fine linen, bright and clean; for the fine linen is the righteous acts of the saints.

9 Then he *said to me, “Write, ‘Blessed are those who are invited to the marriage supper of the Lamb.’” And he *said to me, “These are true words of God.” 10 Then I fell at his feet to worship him. But he *said to me, “Do not do that; I am a fellow servant of yours and your brethren who hold the testimony of Jesus; worship God. For the testimony of Jesus is the spirit of prophecy.”

The marriage of the Lamb, Christ and his saints (the Church), has taken place. They now ascend to earth, where Christ will be successful in a spiritual battle and victory over the followers of Satan, and where Christ will stand on the mount of Olives in Jerusalem (Zechariah 14:1-4).

The Coming of Christ

11 And I saw heaven opened, and behold, a white horse, and He who sat on it is called Faithful and True, and in righteousness He judges and wages war. 12 His eyes are a flame of fire, and on His head are many diadems; and He has a name written on Him which no one knows except Himself. 13 He is clothed with a robe dipped in blood, and His name is called The Word of God. 14 And the armies which are in heaven, clothed in fine linen, white and clean, were following Him on white horses. 15 From His mouth comes a sharp sword, so that with it He may strike down the nations, and He will rule them with a rod of iron; and He treads the wine press of the fierce wrath of God, the Almighty. 16 And on His robe and on His thigh He has a name written, “KING OF KINGS, AND LORD OF LORDS.”

17 Then I saw an angel standing in the sun, and he cried out with a loud voice, saying to all the birds which fly in midheaven, “Come, assemble for the great supper of God, 18 so that you may eat the flesh of kings and the flesh of commanders and the flesh of mighty men and the flesh of horses and of those who sit on them and the flesh of all men, both free men and slaves, and small and great.”

19 And I saw the beast and the kings of the earth and their armies assembled to make war against Him who sat on the horse and against His army.

Doom of the Beast and False Prophet

20 And the beast was seized, and with him the false prophet who performed the signs in his presence, by which he deceived those who had received the mark of the beast and those who worshiped his image; these two were thrown alive into the lake of fire which burns with brimstone. 21 And the rest were killed with the sword which came from the mouth of Him who sat on the horse, and all the birds were filled with their flesh.

At the second coming of Christ, after the Tribulation (Matthew 24:29), he will judge the nations/gentiles for how they treated the Jews during the tribulation (Matthew 25:31-32…33-46).

Since we have “thoroughly” discussed Paradise and Heaven, let’s consider the thief on the cross. Did the thief go to heaven, or did he go to Paradise?

Luke 23:39-44 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

39 One of the criminals who were hanged there was hurling abuse at Him, saying, “Are You not the Christ? Save Yourself and us!” 40 But the other answered, and rebuking him said, “Do you not even fear God, since you are under the same sentence of condemnation? 41 And we indeed are suffering justly, for we are receiving what we deserve for our deeds; but this man has done nothing wrong.” 42 And he was saying, “Jesus, remember me when You come in Your kingdom!” 43 And He said to him, “Truly I say to you, today you shall be with Me in Paradise.”

44 It was now about the sixth hour, and darkness fell over the whole land until the ninth hour,

Question. Did the thief go to Heaven? Because he was not a bird, he did not go to the first heaven. Because the thief was not a space ship, he did not go to the second heaven. But, just as Paul found himself (spirit and soul), in the third heaven, which is Paradise, in the Presence of God, that is where the thief on the cross had his reunion (spirit and soul) with Christ. It appears that the death of the thief took place prior to the death of Christ, which would have him dying before the age of the New Covenant began. With that understanding, the thief died as an old testament saint. Therefore, he will not be bodily caught up in the rapture of the new testament saints, as is described in 1 Thessalonians 4:13-18. The thief will not experience a bodily resurrection, where his body, soul and spirit will be reunited, until after the end of the tribulation (Rev 20:4). But, until that time, the thief, along with all other Old Testament saints, will be in the Presence of God in Paradise.

As a parting thought, at the time of the rapture of the church, which includes the resurrection of the deceased new testament saints, all bodies, souls, and spirits will be united and reunited in perfection. Bodies will never age and die. Minds/souls will never think a sinful thought. Spirits will continue their dwelling within the Spirit of Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. The term “dead in Christ, and we who are alive,” shows that it will be born again new testament believers in Christ who are caught up in the rapture (1 Thes 4:16-17).

When the saints are caught up in the rapture, they will be given perfect, glorified, imperishable bodies. The tribulation saints (those who miss the rapture, but come to know Christ during the tribulation, those who will be martyred during the tribulation), will also be given perfect, glorified, imperishable bodies when they have their bodily resurrection, at the end of the tribulation, with their bodies, souls and spirits reunited (Rev 20:4). Such will be the case for the old testament saints who are also bodily resurrected at the end of the tribulation (Rev 20:4).

1 Corinthians 15:50-54 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

The Mystery of Resurrection

50 Now I say this, brethren, that flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God; nor does the perishable inherit the imperishable. 51 Behold, I tell you a mystery; we will not all sleep, but we will all be changed, 52 in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet; for the trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised imperishable, and we will be changed.53 For this perishable must put on the imperishable, and this mortal must put on immortality.54 But when this perishable will have put on the imperishable, and this mortal will have put on immortality, then will come about the saying that is written, “Death is swallowed up in victory.

Throughout this discussion, it has been shown that there is one thing that has made the salvation of saints possible, which is the born again spirit. Whenever a person has been born again, that person can not be unborn. Our Lord made that fact clear in John 10:27-30

John 10:27-30 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

27 My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me; 28 and I give eternal life to them, and they will never perish; and no one will snatch them out of My hand. 29 My Father, who has given them to Me, is greater than all; and no one is able to snatch them out of the Father’s hand. 30 I and the Father are one.”

The born again spirit is the anchor that holds each believer secure in Christ. It was the spirit of Lazarus, and of the thief on the cross, that kept their total beings of body, soul and spirit, anchored to Christ. The words of the opening song say, “the anchor holds.” Lazarus, the thief on the cross, and anyone else who has been born again, will receive a raptured or resurrected glorified “being,” (body, soul, spirit). We, too, will have the same perfection of “being,” as that which Adam and Eve had in the Garden of Eden before they sinned…if we have accepted Christ as our Lord and Savior, and have been born again. Only perfect beings of “spirit, soul, and body,” will be present in the eternal state, as will be the perfect things of nature (there is no Mother Nature), as was its presence during the time of the Garden of Eden. (Revelation 22:1-5)

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