108 – New Heaven?

Chris Tomlin – I Will Rise

God has shown great favor on the nation of Israel, and none on its oppressors. Read on …

There are many thoughts about heaven but, what about a “new heaven?” Also, what about a new earth and a new Jerusalem? Many of us remember the song, “when we all get to heaven, what a day of rejoicing that will be, when we all see Jesus, we’ll sing and shout the victory.” Many of us were brought up to think that when we get to heaven, we will go nowhere else.

Let’s consider a passage that deals with “heaven.”

2 Corinthians 12:2, 4 New King James Version (NKJV)

Key thoughts: “2 I know a man in Christ who was caught up to the third heaven. 4 he was caught up into Paradise” (See MacArthur note at the bottom of the page)

Consider the following understanding of heaven. “The first heaven is where the birds fly. The second heaven is where astronauts fly. The third heaven is where God watches over all that fly, and is also known as Paradise.” Consider Lazarus and the rich man in Luke 16:23. Lazarus had died and, in death, his soul was experiencing comfort in Abraham’s bosom, which is figurative language for Paradise, or “in the Presence of God.” The body of Lazarus was in a tomb; his soul and spirit were in God’s Presence. In Luke 23:43, the thief on the cross would be in Paradise after his death, on the same day as his death. His body would be buried, and his soul and spirit would be with Christ in Paradise. After the fall of Adam, in the Garden of Eden, nothing was in its Edenic state of perfection. Before the fall, there were no death or sickness; there were no adverse atmospheric conditions; alligators didn’t eat little dogs. But, because of the sin of Adam, and the following curse, nothing in its perfect state of Genesis Chapters one and two are present in our world today. But, God initiated a plan of redemption for all of His creation, whether “natural, physical or spiritual.” Immediately after the fall of Adam, that plan of redemption was initiated through Christ, as is stated in Genesis 3:15, and is shown being totally fulfilled in 2 Corinthians 5:17 and Revelation 21:5, as follows.

Genesis 3:15, NKJV (The plan of redemption)

“And I will put enmity Between you and the woman, And between your seed and her Seed; He shall bruise your head, And you shall bruise His heel.” (See MacArthur comment at bottom of page)

2 Corinthians 5:17 New King James Version (NKJV) (Spiritual redemption)

“Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new.”

Revelation 21:5 New King James Version (NKJV) (Edenic redemption)

“Then He who sat on the throne said, “Behold, I make all things new.” And He said to me, “Write, for these words are true and faithful.”

Job knew about Christ, the Redeemer: Job 19:25-27 New King James Version (NKJV)

25 For I know that my Redeemer lives, And He shall stand at last on the earth; 26 And after my skin is destroyed, this I know, That in my flesh I shall see God, 27 Whom I shall see for myself, And my eyes shall behold, and not another. How my heart yearns within me!

The Apostle Paul wrote the following verse of encouragement about God’s love for His saints. 1 Corinthians 2:9, NKJV:

” eye has not seen, not ear heard, nor have entered into the heart of man, the things with God has prepared for those who love him.”

As we have seen in this series, Christ will take His New Testament saints, the Bride of Christ, with Him to Heaven (John 14:1-6). The “dead in Christ” will go with the living saints to Heaven (1 Thessalonians 4:13-18/1 Corinthians 15:50-54). The living and dead saints will see Christ, our Lord, before arriving in Heaven. This event is the rapture of the church. When we “all get to Heaven,” we will go before the Judgment Seat of Christ (Bema judgment) for rewards.

2 Corinthians 5:10 Holman Christian Standard Bible (HCSB)

“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.”

While the saints are, “in Heaven,” the seven year tribulation of Revelation chapters 6-19 is taking place on earth. The next appointment for Christ and His bride is the “Marriage of the Lamb,” which also takes place in Heaven (Revelation 19:7-8).

After the marriage, Christ and His bride begin their descent to earth, where Christ defeats the enemies of God at the Battle of Armageddon (Revelation 19:11-21). The bodies of Old Testament saints and deceased tribulation arise from their graves, etc., on earth (OT saints, Daniel 12:2/John 5:28-29; Tribulation Saints, Revelation 20:4); their souls and spirits have been in the Presence of God from the time of their death. All three groups of saints rule and reign with Christ for 1,000 years (Revelation 20:4), and enter into the eternal state of “new heaven, new earth, new Jerusalem,” where they live forever (Revelation 21).

Summary of New Testament saints in Heaven: The bodies (alive and deceased) of New Testament believers will ascend with Christ to heaven when the rapture takes place; their immortal bodies will join their souls and spirits. The NT believers will descend back to earth in their immortal “bodies, souls and spirits;” they will enter into the New Heaven 1,000 years later, at the end of the Millennium. Only New Testament born again believers in Christ will be present in both heavens in body, soul and spirit.

God’s Plan For Eternity Future

Video speakers of God’s Plan For Eternity Future is shown at the bottom of this page.

Our study continues

Revelation 21 New King James Version (NKJV)

All Things Made New

1 Now I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away. Also there was no more sea. 2 Then I, John, saw the holy city, New Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. 3 And I heard a loud voice from heaven saying, “Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men, and He will dwell with them, and they shall be His people. God Himself will be with them and be their God. 4 And God will wipe away every tear from their eyes; there shall be no more death, nor sorrow, nor crying. There shall be no more pain, for the former things have passed away.”

Key: 1. new heaven, new earth, new Jerusalem. 2. The bride now consists of “all saints, of all times,” OT, NT, and Tribulation saints.”

5 Then He who sat on the throne said, “Behold, I make all things new.” And He said to me, “Write, for these words are true and faithful.”

Key. All things of God’s creation in Genesis which were affected by the curse, are no longer cursed, thus, fulfilling Genesis 3:15.

6 And He said to me, “It is done! I am the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End. I will give of the fountain of the water of life freely to him who thirsts. 7 He who overcomes shall inherit all things, and I will be his God and he shall be My son. 8 But the cowardly, unbelieving, abominable, murderers, sexually immoral, sorcerers, idolaters, and all liars shall have their part in the lake which burns with fire and brimstone, which is the second death.”

Key. 7. An overcomer is one by faith in Christ (1 John 5:4). 8. The lake of fire, the second death, is the place of eternal punishment for those of whom have not been born again; such people had lifestyles that were proof of their not having been born again. A single homosexual act does not constitute a lifestyle of homosexuality. A single abortion, or even two, does not constitute a lifestyle of abortion. In 1 Corinthians 6:9-11, the Apostle Paul addresses the issue of the new-birth, whereby a former sinful lifestyle is no longer the driving force in a person’s life. There is an often used statement: “Christians are’t perfect, “just forgiven.” A more correct statement is: “Christians aren’t perfect, but are born again.” 8. Cowardly. The Israelites that were in the Presence of God during their flight from Egypt had a cowardice that showed that they did not have a trust in God to save them. The people in the Millennium saw the result of the righteous reign of Christ, yet had no trust in Him as their Savior. Per Bible Hub, “1169/deilós (“fearful of losses”) refers to an excessive fear (dread) of “losing,” causing someone to be fainthearted (cowardly) – hence, to fall short in following Christ as Lord.”

The New Jerusalem

9 Then one of the seven angels who had the seven bowls filled with the seven last plagues came to me and talked with me, saying, “Come, I will show you the bride, the Lamb’s wife.” 10 And he carried me away in the Spirit to a great and high mountain, and showed me the great city, the holy Jerusalem, descending out of heaven from God, 11 having the glory of God. Her light was like a most precious stone, like a jasper stone, clear as crystal. 12 Also she had a great and high wall with twelve gates, and twelve angels at the gates, and names written on them, which are the names of the twelve tribes of the children of Israel: 13 three gates on the east, three gates on the north, three gates on the south, and three gates on the west.

Key. 12. The names of the 12 tribes of Israel will be written on the gates of the New Jerusalem, showing that Israel has a place of significance in eternity future. The people of Israel, God’s chosen people (Deuteronomy 7:6), have been oppressed by Gentile world empires. Those oppressive empires have ceased to exist but, as we can see in the last three chapters of Revelation, Israel will exist forever in eternity. God has shown great favor on the Jews, and none on its oppressors. Consider the following world empires which greatly oppressed Israel. Egyptian, Assyrian, Babylonian, Medo-Persian, Greek, and Roman, source, Dr. John F. Walvoord, Every Prophecy of the Bible, page 217.

14 Now the wall of the city had twelve foundations, and on them were the names of the twelve apostles of the Lamb. 15 And he who talked with me had a gold reed to measure the city, its gates, and its wall. 16 The city is laid out as a square; its length is as great as its breadth. And he measured the city with the reed: twelve thousand furlongs. Its length, breadth, and height are equal. 17 Then he measured its wall: one hundred and forty-four cubits, according to the measure of a man, that is, of an angel. 18 The construction of its wall was of jasper; and the city was pure gold, like clear glass. 19 The foundations of the wall of the city were adorned with all kinds of precious stones: the first foundation was jasper, the second sapphire, the third chalcedony, the fourth emerald, 20 the fifth sardonyx, the sixth sardius, the seventh chrysolite, the eighth beryl, the ninth topaz, the tenth chrysoprase, the eleventh jacinth, and the twelfth amethyst. 21 The twelve gates were twelve pearls: each individual gate was of one pearl. And the street of the city was pure gold, like transparent glass.

Key. 14. The names of the 12 apostles of Christ are written on the foundation walls of the New Jerusalem, showing the significance of the born again believers in Christ in eternity future.

The Glory of the New Jerusalem

22 But I saw no temple in it, for the Lord God Almighty and the Lamb are its temple. 23 The city had no need of the sun or of the moon to shine in it, for the glory of God illuminated it. The Lamb is its light. 24 And the nations of those who are saved shall walk in its light, and the kings of the earth bring their glory and honor into it. 25 Its gates shall not be shut at all by day (there shall be no night there). 26 And they shall bring the glory and the honor of the nations into it. 27 But there shall by no means enter it anything that defiles, or causes an abomination or a lie, but only those who are written in the Lamb’s Book of Life.

Key. 27. The Lamb’s Book of Life contains the names of the redeemed of all times. The Book of Life contains the names of the unredeemed of all times. See MacArthur note on Revelation 20:11-13, located at the bottom of this page.

In order for anyone to have a place in the “new heaven, new earth, new Jerusalem,” they must have been born again. John 3:3 “You must be born again”

John 3:3 New King James Version (NKJV) ”

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

Fire Proof – At The Cross

Notes

From MacArthur Study Bible Notes (Everyone should own a MacArthur Study Bible)

2 Corinthians

12:2–4 caught up to the third heaven…caught up into Paradise. Paul was not describing two separate visions; “the third heaven” and “Paradise” are the same place (cf. Rev. 2:7, which says the tree of life is in Paradise, with Rev. 22:14, which says it is in heaven). The first heaven is the earth’s atmosphere (Gen. 8:2; Deut. 11:11; 1 Kin. 8:35); the second is interplanetary and interstellar space (Gen. 15:5; Ps. 8:3; Is. 13:10); and the third is the abode of God (1 Kin. 8:30; 2 Chr. 30:27; Ps. 123:1).

Genesis

3:15 After cursing the physical serpent, God turned to the spiritual serpent, the lying seducer, Satan, and cursed him. bruise your head…bruise His heel. This “first gospel” is prophetic of the struggle and its outcome between “your seed” (Satan and unbelievers, who are called the Devil’s children in John 8:44) and her seed (Christ, a descendant of Eve, and those in Him), which began in the garden. In the midst of the curse passage, a message of hope shone forth—the woman’s offspring called “He” is Christ, who will one day defeat the Serpent. Satan could only “bruise” Christ’s heel (cause Him to suffer), while Christ will bruise Satan’s head (destroy him with a fatal blow). Paul, in a passage strongly reminiscent of Gen. 3, encouraged the believers in Rome, “And the God of peace will crush Satan under your feet shortly” (Rom. 16:20). Believers should recognize that they participate in the crushing of Satan because, along with their Savior and because of His finished work on the cross, they also are of the woman’s seed. For more on the destruction of Satan, see Heb. 2:14, 15; Rev. 20:10.

Revelation

20:1—22:21 Chapter 19 ends with the Battle of Armageddon and Christ’s second coming—events that mark the close of the Tribulation. The events of chap. 20—the binding of Satan, Christ’s 1,000 year earthly kingdom, Satan’s final rebellion, and the Great White Throne Judgment—fit chronologically between the close of the Tribulation and the creation of the new heaven and the new earth described in chaps. 21, 22.

20:11–15 These verses describe the final judgment of all the unbelievers of all ages (Matt. 10:15; 11:22, 24; 12:36, 41, 42; Luke 10:14; John 12:48; Acts 17:31; 24:25; Rom. 2:5, 16; Heb. 9:27; 2 Pet. 2:9; 3:7; Jude 6). Our Lord referred to this event as the “resurrection of condemnation” (John 5:29). This judgment takes place in the indescribable void between the end of the present universe (v. 11) and the creation of the new heaven and earth (21:1).

20:11 great white throne. Nearly 50 times in Revelation there is the mention of a throne. This is a judgment throne, elevated, pure, and holy. God sits on it as judge (cf. 4:2, 3, 9; 5:1, 7, 13; 6:16; 7:10, 15) in the person of the Lord Jesus Christ. See 21:5, 6; John 5:22–29; Acts 17:31. earth and the heaven fled away. John saw the contaminated universe go out of existence. Peter described this moment in 2 Pet. 3:10–13 (see notes there). The universe is “uncreated,” going into non-existence (cf. Matt. 24:35).

20:12 standing before God. In a judicial sense, as guilty, condemned prisoners before the bar of divine justice. There are no living sinners left in the destroyed universe since all sinners were killed and all believers glorified. books. These books record every thought, word, and deed of sinful men—all recorded by divine omniscience (see note on Dan. 7:9, 10, the verse that is the source of this text). They will provide the evidence for eternal condemnation. Cf. 18:6, 7. Book of Life. It contains the names of all the redeemed (Dan. 12:1; see notes on 3:5). judged according to their works. Their thoughts (Luke 8:17; Rom. 2:16), words (Matt. 12:37), and actions (Matt. 16:27) will be compared to God’s perfect, holy standard (Matt. 5:48; 1 Pet. 1:15, 16) and will be found wanting (Rom. 3:23). This also implies that there are degrees of punishment in hell (cf. Matt. 10:14, 15; 11:22; Mark 12:38–40; Luke 12:47, 48; Heb. 10:29).

Key. “The dead,” as opposed to “the dead in Christ.” The dead are those which have not been born again. The “dead in Christ,” are those whom have been born again, and are identified as such in 1 Thessalonians 4:16.

21:1 As the chapter opens, all the sinners of all the ages, both demons and men, including Satan, the beast, and false prophet, are in the lake of fire forever. The whole universe has been destroyed, and God creates a new universe to be the eternal dwelling place of the redeemed. a new heaven and a new earth. The entire universe as we now know it will be destroyed (2 Pet. 3:10–13) and be replaced by a new creation that will last forever. This is an OT reality (Ps. 102:25, 26; Is. 65:17; 66:22), as well as a NT one (Luke 21:33; Heb. 1:10–12). See note on 20:11–15. no more sea. Currently three-fourths of the earth’s surface is water, but the new environment will no longer be water-based and will have completely different climatic conditions. See notes on 22:1, 2.

21:2—22:5 By this point in the chronology of Revelation, OT saints, tribulation saints, and all those converted during the millennial kingdom will be incorporated into the ultimate redeemed bride and will dwell in the New Jerusalem. John described the consummation of all things in Christ and the New Jerusalem descending into the eternal state (cf. 19:7; 20:6; 1 Cor. 15:28; Heb. 12:22–24).

21:2 New Jerusalem. Cf. 3:12; Heb. 11:10; 12:22–24; 13:14. This is the capital city of heaven, a place of perfect holiness. It is seen “coming down out of heaven” indicating it already existed; but it descends into the new heavens and new earth from its place on high. This is the city where the saints will live (cf. John 14:1–3). bride. An important NT metaphor for the church (cf. Matt. 25:1–13; Eph. 5:25–27). John’s imagery here extends from the third part of the Jewish wedding, the ceremony. Believers (the bride) in the New Jerusalem come to meet Christ (the bridegroom) in the final ceremony of redemptive history (see note on 19:7). The whole city, occupied by all the saints, is called the bride, so that all saints must be finally included in the bride imagery and bridal blessing. God has brought home a bride for His beloved Son. All the saints live with Christ in the Father’s house (a promise made before the church began; John 14:2).

21:3 the tabernacle of God. The word translated “tabernacle” means place of abode. This is God’s house, the place where He lives (cf. Lev. 26:11, 12; Deut. 12:5).

21:4 wipe away every tear. Since there will never be a tear in heaven, nothing will be sad, disappointing, deficient, or wrong (cf. Is. 53:4, 5; 1 Cor. 15:54–57).

21:5 true and faithful. Cf. 3:14; 19:11. God always speaks truth (John 17:17).

21:6 the Alpha and the Omega. See note on 1:8. water of life. Cf. 7:17; 22:1, 17. The lasting spiritual water of which Jesus spoke (John 4:13, 14; 7:37, 38; cf. Is. 55:1, 2). him who thirsts. Heaven belongs to those who, knowing their souls are parched by sin, have earnestly sought the satisfaction of salvation and eternal life (cf. Ps. 42:1, 2; Is. 55:1, 2; John 7:37, 38).

21:7 He who overcomes. Cf. 1 John 5:4, 5. Anyone who exercises saving faith in Jesus Christ (see note on 2:7). inherit. The spiritual inheritance all believers will receive (1 Pet. 1:4; cf. Matt. 25:23) is the fullness of the new creation. Cf. Rom. 8:16, 17.

21:8 A solemn, serious warning about the kinds of people who will be outcasts from the new heaven and the new earth in the lake of fire. The NT often goes beyond just citing unbelief in listing character and lifestyle traits of the outcast, so that believers can identify such people (1 Cor. 6:9, 10; Gal. 5:19; cf. John 8:31). sorcerers. See note on 9:21. lake which burns with fire. See note on 19:20. brimstone. See note on 9:17. second death. See note on 20:6.

21:9 seven bowls. See note on 15:7. seven last plagues. See note on 15:1–8.

21:10 in the Spirit. See note on 1:10.

21:19, 20 Because some of the names of these gems have changed through the centuries, it is difficult to identify each one with certainty. Eight of the 12 stones are found in the breastplate of the High-Priest (Ex. 28, 39), and the other 4 may also be related to the breastplate. The gems picture a brilliant, indescribable panoply of beautiful colors that send forth the light of God’s glory.

21:21 one pearl. Each of the gates of the city is a single, almost 1,400-mile-high pearl. Even as earthly pearls are formed in response to the wounding of oyster flesh, so these gigantic, supernatural pearls will remind saints throughout eternity of the magnitude of Christ’s suffering and its eternal benefit.

21:22 no temple. Several passages affirm that there is a temple in heaven (3:12; 7:15; 11:19; 15:5). Here, it is clear there is none in eternity. How can this be? The temple is not a building; it is the Lord God Himself. Revelation 7:15 implies this when it says, “He who sits on the throne will dwell among them.” Verse 23 continues the thought of no temple, except God and the Lamb. The glory of God which illuminates all heaven defines it as His temple. There is no need for a temple in the eternal state since God Himself will be the temple in which everything exists. The presence of God lit. fills the entire new heaven and new earth (cf. v. 3). Going to heaven will be entering the limitless presence of the Lord (cf. John 14:3; 1 Thess. 4:17).

21:24 the nations. Lit. “the peoples.” Redeemed people from every nation and ethnic group will dwell in heaven’s light. In the eternal city, there will be no more divisions, barriers, or exclusions because of race or politics. All kinds of peoples in eternity dissolve into the people of God, and they will move freely in and about the city.

21:27 Lamb’s Book of Life. See note on 3:5.

Everyone should own a MacArthur Study Bible.

Everyone should have access to Bible Gateway and Bible Hub. Bible Gateway has many bible translations and commentaries. Bible Hub, “biblehub.com,” has good lexicon information, as well as commentaries.

Scriptures in this article come from Biblegateway https://www.biblegateway.com/

Most notes in this article come from the MacArthur Study Bible, being provided by Biblegateway.

Study Bibles that are most often used in these articles are: MacArthur, Ryrie, Jermiah, HCSB, Scofield.

Commentaries that are most often used in these articles are those which have been written by John MacArthur, Charles C. Ryrie, John F. Walvoord, Charles C. Ryrie, J. Dwight Pentecost, Dallas Theological Seminary, Moody Bible Institute.

Video speakers of God’s Plan For Eternity Future

John Ankerberg, founder and president of The John Ankerberg Show, the most-watched Christian worldview show in America
https://www.jashow.org/about-dr-john-ankerberg/

Ed Hindson, http://thekingiscoming.com/about-dr-ed-hindson/
https://www.lightsource.com/ministry/the-king-is-coming/
Ed Hindson is the Bible Teacher on The King Is Coming telecast. He is also the Assistant Chancellor, Distinguished Professor, and Dean of the Institute of Biblical Studies and the School of Religion at Liberty University in Virginia.

Mark Hitchcock, http://marklhitchcock.com/about/
Mark Hitchcock is a leading Bible prophecy expert, prolific author who has penned over 20 books on the end times, senior pastor, and adjunct faculty member of the Dallas Theological Seminary.

Ron Rhodes, http://ronrhodes.org/meet-ron.html
Th.D., Dallas Theological Seminary (1986). Major: Systematic Theology. Graduated with High Honors.
Th.M., Dallas Theological Seminary (1983). Major: Systematic Theology. Graduated with Honors. Elected to Dean’s List.
B.A., Houston Baptist University (1979). Recipient of the Greek Excellence Award. Chief nominee for the Riverside Scholarship.

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107 – The Millennium

Revelation Review – A Stop At The Millennium – A Quick Look Ahead

The chronology of the God-ordained events of the end times has been our scriptural direction of travel. We have discussed the rapture of the church (John 14:1-6; 1 Thessalonians 4:13-18; 1 Corinthians 15:50-54). We have covered God’s wrath and judgments of the tribulation, from which believers in Christ will be delivered. There is no basis of scripture that gives permission to say that the wrath or judgments of the tribulation are those of the Anti-Christ (Revelation 6:1-16:21). While the tribulation has been occurring on earth, we have seen the resurrected and raptured new testament saints in Heaven, that were taken by Christ to the Bema Judgment for rewards, prior to the tribulation, (2 Corinthians 5:8, 10), then being taken to the Marriage Of The Lamb in Heaven (Revelation 19:7-8). At the time of The Marriage, we have seen all of the nations of the world gathering for an attack on Israel at the battle of Armageddon (Revelation 16:16;19:15; Zechariah 12:2-3; 14:2-3). Following The Marriage Of The Lamb, we have seen Christ descending back to earth with His bride (the raptured NT saints; Revelation 19:11-14), for His defeat of the attackers of Israel. (Notice that the Battle of Armageddon will not take place in “New York City, as a movie has shown it to be.”). The next stop for Christ and His Bride will be The Marriage Supper Of The Lamb, which will take place on earth during the millennium. The guests that will be invited to The Supper will be the saints of the Old Testament and the tribulation. It is important to understand that Christ will take the NT saints from earth to heaven for The Marriage of the Lamb; they can not get there, “any other way” (John 14:1-6). To make any of these events an allegory is to make the whole Bible an allegory.

This is where our study of God’s chronology of end of times events continues.

Forum on the Millennium

Revelation 20 New King James Version (NKJV)

THE REIGN OF CHRIST (The Thousand Years)

Satan Bound 1,000 Years

1 Then I saw an angel coming down from heaven, having the key to the bottomless pit and a great chain in his hand. 2 He laid hold of the dragon, that serpent of old, who is the Devil and Satan, and bound him for a thousand years; 3 and he cast him into the bottomless pit, and shut him up, and set a seal on him, so that he should deceive the nations no more till the thousand years were finished. But after these things he must be released for a little while.

(My note) Satan will be bound for 1,000 years.

The Saints Reign with Christ 1,000 Years

4 And I saw thrones, and they sat on them, and judgment was committed to them. Then I saw the souls of those who had been beheaded for their witness to Jesus and for the word of God, who had not worshiped the beast or his image, and had not received his mark on their foreheads or on their hands. And they lived and reigned with Christ for a thousand years. 5 But the rest of the dead did not live again until the thousand years were finished. This is the first resurrection. 6 Blessed and holy is he who has part in the first resurrection. Over such the second death has no power, but they shall be priests of God and of Christ, and shall reign with Him a thousand years.

(My Note, a bit of repetition) The tribulation saints are to be resurrected at the beginning of the millennium, which is the First Resurrection; they will rule and reign with Christ in the millennium. The First Resurrection will also include the righteous of the OT (Daniel 12:1-2). The deceased unbelievers of the tribulation, and of all times, will be resurrected in the Second Resurrection, at the end of the millennium, 1,000 years after the First Resurrection. The New Testament saints will be raptured, or resurrected from death, prior to the tribulation; they will return with Christ to earth from Heaven immediately following The Marriage of the Lamb. Ruling, along with the tribulation saints, will be the NT saints (2 Timothy 2:12/1 John 5:4) and OT saints (Ezekiel 37:24-27; Isaiah 14:1-2; 49:22-23; 60:14; 61:5; Amos 9:14-15; Jeremiah 30:9; Zechariah 8:22-23; Matthew 19:28; Luke 22:30; Romans 15:12). (See study notes on Daniel 12:2: John F. MacArthur, Charles C. Ryrie, C.I. Scofield, John F. Walvoord, J. Dwight Pentecost, for confirming comments on the resurrection of the saints of the Old Testament, New Testament and tribulation.) The souls and spirits of the OT, NT and Tribulation saints will be with God from the time of their death (OT Luke 16:23; NT/Tribulation 2 Corinthians 5:8). In the rapture of the church, the bodies of deceased NT saints will be resurrected to join their souls and spirits in heaven. In the First Resurrection of the millennium, the bodies of the OT and tribulation saints will be raised to join their souls and spirits on earth; then, they will be with the NT raptured and resurrected saints, ruling and reigning in the millennium (not to forget the celebration of The Marriage Supper). At the end of the millennium, in the resurrection of the unrighteous, the bodies, souls and spirits of the unrighteous of all ages will be joined. Next, in their eternal destiny, will be the Great White Throne Judgment, and The Lake of Fire. From the time of their death until this resurrection, the souls of the unrighteous have been experiencing torment in Hades (Luke 16:23: Ryrie and MacArthur Study Bible notes). The righteous are righteous, and have their spirits anchored in Christ (2 Cor 5:21), because their spirits have been born again (John 3:3). The unrighteous are unrighteous because their spirits have not been born again, and have not come to belief in Christ (John 3:18; Romans 8:1), being still in their state of unbelief from the fall of Adam (Genesis 2:17). The Great White Throne Judgment and Lake Of Fire await all of the unrighteous of all times. Only the righteous will enter into the eternal state of “new heaven, new earth and new Jerusalem” (Revelation 21:1-2).

Satanic Rebellion Crushed

7 Now when the thousand years have expired, Satan will be released from his prison 8 and will go out to deceive the nations which are in the four corners of the earth, Gog and Magog, to gather them together to battle, whose number is as the sand of the sea. 9 They went up on the breadth of the earth and surrounded the camp of the saints and the beloved city. And fire came down from God out of heaven and devoured them. 10 The devil, who deceived them, was cast into the lake of fire and brimstone where the beast and the false prophet are. And they will be tormented day and night forever and ever.

(My note) Satan will be released from the bottomless pit at the end of the millennium, and will lead unbelievers of the millennium in a revolt against God; God wins! Satan, the anti-Christ and the false prophet will be cast into the lake of fire, where torment is eternal.

The Great White Throne Judgment

11 Then I saw a great white throne and Him who sat on it, from whose face the earth and the heaven fled away. And there was found no place for them. 12 And I saw the dead, small and great, standing before God, and books were opened. And another book was opened, which is the Book of Life. And the dead were judged according to their works, by the things which were written in the books. 13 The sea gave up the dead who were in it, and Death and Hades delivered up the dead who were in them. And they were judged, each one according to his works. 14 Then Death and Hades were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death. 15 And anyone not found written in the Book of Life was cast into the lake of fire.

(My note) The unrighteous/unbelievers of all ages will stand before The Great White Throne Judgment where they will be judged based on their works. Believers will not be present; they will face no judgment; Christ took on their judgment. The unrighteous of all times will be cast into the lake of fire, where Satan, the anti-Christ and the false prophet occupy.

CAUTION!

Parents! Please! Do not take your family to the Lake of Fire on “the family plan!” That is a horrible thing to happen. Please take this information seriously.

Given: (John 3:3) We must be born again to avoid the lake of fire and spend eternity with Christ. (John 16:7-11) When we have been born again, we have God’s Holy Spirit dwelling within our spirit convicting us of “sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment.” A sign that we have not been born again, and that we do not have a continual prompting of the Holy Spirit of “sin, and of righteousness and of judgment,” is our lifestyle, and not an individual act. Consider the evidence of people not having been born again, and not being prompted of the Holy Spirit to the things of God. Consider each indictment.

1 Corinthians 6:9-10 New King James Version (NKJV)

9 Do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived. Neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor homosexuals, nor sodomites, 10 nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners will inherit the kingdom of God.

Consider that which took place in the lives of those after they were born again. There was a lifestyle change, because of a spirit change, with a continual prompting regarding, “sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment.”

1 Corinthians 6:11 New King James Version (NKJV)

11 And such were some of you. But you were washed, but you were sanctified, but you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus and by the Spirit of our God.

LET’S GET BACK TO THE CAUTION!

If person leads a homosexual lifestyle, it is proof that they do not have God’s Holy Spirit dwelling within their spirit. It is proof that such a person has not been born again. It is also proof that such a person has their personal destiny in the Lake Of Fire. If a person has no problem with the murder of an unborn infant, it is proof that such a person has not been born again. If such a person supports, or votes for, political candidates that support same-sex marriage or abortion on demand, it is proof that such a person has not been born again. Please understand that, as 1 Corinthians 6:11 teaches, there are lifestyle changes that will show that a person has been born again, and is no longer a supporter of homosexuality, abortion on demand, or the other things that show a lack of a born again spirit.

LET’S GET BACK TO THE LAKE OF FIRE ON THE FAMILY PLAN.

The Democrat Party supports same-sex marriage and abortion on demand. Their party chairman, and their former candidate to lead the USA have stated that there is no place for “pro-life” people in the Democrat Party. Yet, there are people “that say they are Christians,” but continue to support the Democrat Party, with their money and votes. THOSE PEOPLE SHOW EVIDENCE OF NOT BEING BORN AGAIN! There are churches that have visiting Democrat leaders in their churches speaking in support of the Democrat Party. Parents, which say that they are Christians, and also Democrats, are placing their children in arenas of unrighteousness whenever they take their children to Democrat gatherings, whether it is in a church or at a political setting. When such a parent does not tell their children that the Democrat Party’s support of homosexuality and abortion on demand are in opposition to God’s Holy Word, they are confusing their children, and allowing them to believe that God approves of same-sex marriage and the killing of unborn babies. Our children, just as we, must be born again to be saved from the Lake of Fire. 1 John 1:5 says, “God is light, and in Him thee is no darkness.” Light refers to righteous. Darkness refers to not being righteous. Until we have been born again, all of us are “darkness.” After our new birth, we become “light.” By being born again, with our spirit residing within God’s Holy Spirit, within the Spirit of Christ, our spirit also begins dwelling within the Spirit of God, “the Father.”

Nobody should want any other person to spend their eternity in the Lake of Fire. Neither should any parent put their children in the presence of people who may speak things that are contrary to God’s Holy Word. Parents are directed by God to teach their children the things of God (Deuteronomy 6:1-9), which are designed to lead children to lives of righteousness. When parents allow their children to be taught things that are not of God, those teachings are of Satan and are designed to lead people to destruction (John 10:10).

PLEASE DON’T SHOOT THE MESSENGER!

Parents, your lifestyle has a lot to do with the direction in life that your children will follow, and the one in which their children will also follow. I trust that you will recognize that my heart’s desire is to encourage you, and your children, to stay on the path that leads to eternal life with Christ. Please follow that path, and not the one that can lead you, and your whole family, to the Lake of Fire “on the family plan.”

NOTES: MacArthur Study Bible

20:2 a thousand years. This is the first of 6 references to the length of the millennial kingdom (cf. vv. 3, 4, 5, 6, 7). Christ will return and reign in a real kingdom on earth for 1,000 years

20:3 bottomless pit. All 7 times that this appears in Revelation, it refers to the place where fallen angels and evil spirits are kept captive, waiting to be sent to the lake of fire—the final hell prepared for them (Matt. 25:41).

20:3 released for a little while. Satan will be released so God can make a permanent end of sin before establishing the new heaven and earth. Satan will then gather unbelievers for one final, futile rebellion against God. It will be quickly and decisively crushed, followed by the Great White Throne Judgment and the establishment of the eternal state.

20:4 the souls of those who had been beheaded. These are tribulation martyrs (cf. 6:9; 18:24; 19:2). The Gr. word translated “beheaded” became a general term for execution, not necessarily a particular method. his mark. See note on 13:16. Tribulation martyrs will be executed for refusing the mark of the beast. reigned. Tribulation believers, along with the redeemed from both the OT and NT eras, will reign with Christ (1 Cor. 6:2; 2 Tim. 2:12) during the 1,000 year kingdom.

20:5 the rest of the dead. The bodies of unbelievers of all ages will not be resurrected until the Great White Throne Judgment (vv. 12, 13). first resurrection. Scripture teaches two kinds of resurrections: the “resurrection of life” and “the resurrection of condemnation” (John 5:29; cf. Dan. 12:2; Acts 24:15). The first kind of resurrection is described as “the resurrection of the just” (Luke 14:14), the resurrection of “those who are Christ’s at His coming” (1 Cor. 15:23), and the “better resurrection” (Heb. 11:35). It includes only the redeemed of the church age (1 Thess. 4:13–18), the OT (Dan. 12:2), and the Tribulation (v. 4). They will enter the kingdom in resurrection bodies, along with believers who survived the Tribulation. The second kind of resurrection, then, will be the resurrection of the unconverted who will receive their final bodies suited for torment in hell.

20:6 Blessed. Those who die in the Lord (14:13) are blessed with the privilege of entering His kingdom (see note on 1:3). second death. The first death is only physical, the second is spiritual and eternal in the lake of fire, the final, eternal hell (v. 14). It could exist outside the created universe as we know it, outside of space and time, and be presently unoccupied (see note on 19:20). thousand years. See note on v. 2.

20:7 Satan…released. He is loosed to bring cohesive leadership to the world of rebels born to the believers who entered the kingdom at the beginning. He is loosed to reveal the character of Christ-rejecting sinners who are brought into judgment for the last time ever.

20:8 Gog and Magog. The name given to the army of rebels and its leader at the end of the Millennium. They were names of ancient enemies of the Lord. Magog was the grandson of Noah (Gen. 10:2) and founder of a kingdom located N of the Black and Caspian Seas. Gog is apparently the leader of a rebel army known collectively as Magog. The battle depicted in vv. 8, 9 is like the one in Ezek. 38, 39; it is best to see this one as taking place at the end of the Millennium. For the difference, see notes on Ezek. 38, 39.

20:9 beloved city. Jerusalem (cf. Pss. 78:68; 87:2), the capital city during Christ’s millennial reign (Jer. 3:17). The saints will be living around the city where Christ reigns (cf. Is. 24:23; Jer. 3:17; Zech. 14:9–11). fire. Frequently associated in Scripture with divine judgment of wicked men (Gen. 19:24; 2 Kin. 1:10, 12, 14; Luke 9:54; 17:29).

20:10 deceived. Just as his demons will entice the world’s armies into the Battle of Armageddon, Satan will draw them into a suicidal assault against Christ and His people (16:13, 14). lake of fire and brimstone. See note on 19:20. tormented day and night. See note on 14:11. Continuous, unrelieved torment will be the final state of Satan, fallen angels, and unredeemed men.

20:11–15 These verses describe the final judgment of all the unbelievers of all ages (Matt. 10:15; 11:22, 24; 12:36, 41, 42; Luke 10:14; John 12:48; Acts 17:31; 24:25; Rom. 2:5, 16; Heb. 9:27; 2 Pet. 2:9; 3:7; Jude 6). Our Lord referred to this event as the “resurrection of condemnation” (John 5:29). This judgment takes place in the indescribable void between the end of the present universe (v. 11) and the creation of the new heaven and earth (21:1).

20:11 great white throne. Nearly 50 times in Revelation there is the mention of a throne. This is a judgment throne, elevated, pure, and holy. God sits on it as judge (cf. 4:2, 3, 9; 5:1, 7, 13; 6:16; 7:10, 15) in the person of the Lord Jesus Christ. See 21:5, 6; John 5:22–29; Acts 17:31. earth and the heaven fled away. John saw the contaminated universe go out of existence. Peter described this moment in 2 Pet. 3:10–13 (see notes there). The universe is “uncreated,” going into non-existence (cf. Matt. 24:35).

20:12 standing before God. In a judicial sense, as guilty, condemned prisoners before the bar of divine justice. There are no living sinners left in the destroyed universe since all sinners were killed and all believers glorified. books. These books record every thought, word, and deed of sinful men—all recorded by divine omniscience (see note on Dan. 7:9, 10, the verse that is the source of this text). They will provide the evidence for eternal condemnation. Cf. 18:6, 7. Book of Life. It contains the names of all the redeemed (Dan. 12:1; see notes on 3:5). judged according to their works. Their thoughts (Luke 8:17; Rom. 2:16), words (Matt. 12:37), and actions (Matt. 16:27) will be compared to God’s perfect, holy standard (Matt. 5:48; 1 Pet. 1:15, 16) and will be found wanting (Rom. 3:23). This also implies that there are degrees of punishment in hell (cf. Matt. 10:14, 15; 11:22; Mark 12:38–40; Luke 12:47, 48; Heb. 10:29).

20:13 Death and Hades. See note on 1:18. Both terms describe the state of death. All unrighteous dead will appear at the Great White Throne Judgment; none will escape. All the places that have held the bodies of the unrighteous dead will yield up new bodies suited for hell.

20:14 second death. See note on v. 6.

20:15 lake of fire. See note on 19:20.

19:20 beast was captured, and…the false prophet. In an instant, the world’s armies are without their leaders. The beast is Antichrist (see notes on 13:1–8); the false prophet is his religious cohort (see notes on 13:11–17). cast alive. The bodies of the beast and the false prophet will be transformed, and they will be banished directly to the lake of fire (Dan. 7:11)—the first of countless millions of unregenerate men (20:15) and fallen angels (cf. Matt. 25:41) to arrive in that dreadful place. That these two still appear there 1,000 years later (20:10) refutes the false doctrine of annihilationism (cf. 14:11; Is. 66:24; Matt. 25:41; Mark 9:48; Luke 3:17; 2 Thess. 1:9). lake of fire. The final hell, the place of eternal punishment for all unrepentant rebels, angelic or human (cf. 20:10, 15). The NT says much of eternal punishment (cf. 14:10, 11; Matt. 13:40–42; 25:41; Mark 9:43–48; Luke 3:17; 12:47, 48). fire…brimstone. See note on 9:17. These two are frequently associated with divine judgment (14:10; 20:10; 21:8; Gen. 19:24; Ps. 11:6; Is. 30:33; Ezek. 38:22; Luke 17:29).

Video Speakers

John Ankerberg, founder and president of The John Ankerberg Show, the most-watched Christian worldview show in America
https://www.jashow.org/about-dr-john-ankerberg/

Jimmy DeYoung – Signs of the Last Days
Bio – http://jimmydeyoung.com/aboutdrd.shtml

David Reagan http://christinprophecy.org/staff/dr-david-r-reagan/

Nathan Jones http://christinprophecy.org/staff/nathan-e-jones/

Al Gist http://www.maranathaevangelisticministries.com/about2

Dennis Pollock https://www.spiritofgrace.org/

106 – The Bride

Christ-Centered wedding

Psalm 99:5 King James Version (KJV)

“Exalt ye the Lord our God, and worship at his footstool; for he is holy”

Every bride is a beautiful bride! The video shows such beauty. But, what had to have taken place for the bride to become the bride?

Consider a wedding. Consider the things that happened that led to the wedding. Consider the bride; she had to be pursued. Consider the groom; he was the pursuer. As is the case of many bride and groom situations, the female shows no interest in having anything to do with the pursuing male, but the male “doesn’t give up” his pursuit. As time passes, the male shows the female all of the reasons that she should accept his offer of, a date, a relationship, and finally of being the bride of the male who would never gave up his pursuit of the “ever alluding female.” The female finally “gave up,” and joined the male in the marriage that some may have said, “would never happen.”

Key in any wedding ceremony is the time when the Father gives the Bride away to the Bridegroom.”

Every bride is beautiful, including the bride of Christ. Consider the things that had to have happened for the bride of Christ to become the bride of Christ?

Consider every person that has ever been born. All of us came into the world being totally depraved in body, soul and spirit (1 Thessalonians 5:23), which is a state that we inherited from our original parents, “Adam and Eve.” (The following discussion of Adam and Eve comes from Genesis 2 and 3.)

God created Adam and provided all of the things that Adam would need in life, including a job, which was “to tend and keep the garden” where God had placed him. God provided for all of Adam’s needs including a wife, whom Adam called, “Eve.” Adam and Eve had perfect communion with God. God would walk with Adam and Eve in the garden of Eden, “in the cool of the day.”

All of life’s necessities were provided for Adam and Eve by God. God gave Adam and Eve total freedom in life, except to sin. God provided a warning to Adam of a great consequence that would come on the Edenic duo if they were to disobey God. The consequence of sin would be death, which would be the death of their total being, “their body, soul and spirit.” The body is a person’s “eyes, nose and toes.” The soul allows us to be aware that we have “eyes, nose and toes.” The soul is our mind, our intellect, our reasoning, our emotions. We have control over our body and soul. The spirit is the part of us which imparts either sin or righteous thoughts into our mind, which will also affect that which we do with our “eyes, nose and toes.” Christ told the Apostles that God’s Holy Spirit would convict them of “sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment (John 16:7-10). We have no control over our spirit. It is controlled either by God or by Satan, in whomever our spirit dwells.

The sin to which Adam and Eve succumbed may seem to be quite harmless, eating of the tree of good and evil”

Genesis 2:16-17 New King James Version (NKJV)

16 And the Lord God commanded the man, saying, “Of every tree of the garden you may freely eat; 17 but of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day that you eat of it you shall surely die.”

The motivation for that sin was of the mind of Adam and Eve.

1 John 2:16 New King James Version (NKJV)

“For all that is in the world—the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life—is not of the Father but is of the world.”

Because of the sin of Adam and Eve, they were removed from the Garden of Eden, from the immediate presence of God. They became totally depraved in “body, soul and spirit,” because of their disobeying God in the Garden of Eden. An immediate death spiral began, with the first victim being the spirit. The body and soul began an aging process that would result in death, which was not a part of God’s plan. As Adam and Eve had children, each child entered the world with no desire to have a personal relationship with God, because of their fallen and depraved state in life. There was nothing present in their depraved souls and spirits that would cause them to seek a relationship with a holy and righteous God. The children of Adam and Eve were conceived and born to be unholy and unrighteous human beings because of the flawed sperm and egg of Adam and Eve. Just as the children of Adam and Eve were conceived and born to be unrighteous, so has been every succeeding person that has been conceived. Just as the penalty for Adam and Eve was death, “permanent death,” of their body, soul and spirit, so is the penalty for every man, woman and child that has ever been conceived. The state of every human being from the time of Adam and Eve is summed up in the following verse of scripture.

1 Corinthians 15:22 New King James Version (NKJV)

“For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ all shall be made alive.”

It is only because of God’s plan of redemption through Christ that any of us can have a relationship with Him, and escape the penalty of eternal death. By being born again (born from above) we have been made holy and righteous, with our spirit being anchored in the Holy Spirit of God, never to be removed. It is only through our new birth that the depraved state that we inherited from our parents has been negated. It is only by being born again that we will not have an eternal death of our body, soul and spirit. It is only by being born again believers in Christ, that we are also made to be saints, and also made to be the “bride of Christ.” In spite of God’s Holy Spirit calling us, from our state of depravity to one of righteousness, many rebelled. But, God never gave up on us; He continued his pursuit of us. We could never have imagined being “the bride of Christ!” But, many of us gave in! We came to saving faith in Christ and became His bride. The “we,” are those of us which have been born again. We have been made to be holy and righteous, as righteous as that of Christ (2 Corinthians 5:21), because of that which He did for us.

Consider the path that leads believers in Christ to the marriage of the lamb (Revelation 19:7-8).

We were born again of spirit (John 3:3-8); we can’t be “unborn”. We believed in Christ as our Lord and Savior (John 3:16-18). We were spiritually baptized into Christ, and put on Christ by our spirit dwelling within the Spirit of Christ (Galatians 3:27). We received the spiritual indwelling of Christ (Colossians 1:27). Our spirit was made new, and placed within the Spirit of Christ (2 Corinthians 5:17), which made our spirit to be as pure as the Spirit of Christ (2 Corinthians 5:21). We were betrothed to Christ (2 Corinthians 11:2), and are now waiting for our marriage to the lamb (Revelation 19:7-8). Prior to the rapture of the church, Christ will come for us in the air and take us to Heaven with Him (John 14:1-6; 1 Thessalonaians 4:13-18). We will arrive in our glorified and eternal “body, soul and spirit” (1 Corinthians 15:50, 51-54). We will be taken to the Judgment Seat Of Christ (2 Corinthians 5:10). We will not be judged for the purposes of salvation, but will receive spiritual gifts. We were saved when we were born again, and can not be unborn. At the end of the tribulation, we will be taken to the marriage of the Lamb, where “the Father gives us (the bride of Christ) away to the Bridegroom (Christ) (Revelation 19:7-8).” Consider the things that will be going on in Heaven, preceding the marriage of the Lamb.

Revelation 19:1-6 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

The Fourfold Hallelujah

19 After these things I heard something like a loud voice of a great multitude in heaven, saying,

“Hallelujah! Salvation and glory and power belong to our God; 2 because His judgments are true and righteous; for He has judged the great harlot who was corrupting the earth with her immorality, and He has avenged the blood of His bond-servants on her.” 3 And a second time they said, “Hallelujah! Her smoke rises up forever and ever.” 4 And the twenty-four elders and the four living creatures fell down and worshiped God who sits on the throne saying, “Amen. Hallelujah!” 5 And a voice came from the throne, saying,

“Give praise to our God, all you His bond-servants, you who fear Him, the small and the great.” 6 Then I heard something like the voice of a great multitude and like the sound of many waters and like the sound of mighty peals of thunder, saying, “Hallelujah! For the Lord our God, the Almighty, reigns.

Consider the marriage ceremony of the bride of Christ to the Bridegroom, “Christ.”

Revelation 19:7-8 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.

Consider the following video that shows the marriage of the Lamb. Consider the beauty of the bride. The elderly man in the video is the Apostle John.

After the marriage of the Lamb occurs, Christ and His bride will ascend from heaven to earth. After Christ defeats the enemies of God at the Battle of Armageddon (Revelation 19:11-21), Christ, the bride and the guests will proceed to the marriage supper which will take place on earth during the millennium. The guests will be the Old Testament saints and the Tribulation saints. It is amazing to think that we, the born again believers in Christ, will have a place of special importance at the marriage supper.

Revelation 19:9 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

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.”

In a marriage, it’s not a matter of what the man and woman do to take their love to the wedding altar. It’s simply the love of a man and a woman which causes them to join their lives in marriage. It’s very much the same in the spiritual sense when someone comes to know Christ as their Lord and Savior.

A lot of verses have been mentioned in this discussion about the bridegroom and the bride. But, please know that it is simply an intimacy of relationship with Christ as our Lord and Savior that makes all of those verses tell us that we have been born again, and that we will spend eternity with Christ.

John 17:3 New King James Version (NKJV)

“And this is eternal life, that they may know You, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom You have sent”

We are saved by grace through faith.

Ephesians 2:8 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

“For by grace you have been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God;”

We don’t have to be perfect to be saved; we have to be born again. Once that happens, our eternity with Christ has been “set in stone.” From the moment that we accept Christ as our Lord and Savior, we enter into eternal life with Christ. Try it! You’ll like it!.

Nearer To God

Nearer My God To Thee

John 20:28 King James Version (KJV)

“And Thomas answered and said unto him, My Lord and my God.”

Matthew 10:16 New King James Version (NKJV)

16 “Behold, I send you out as sheep in the midst of wolves. Therefore be wise as serpents and harmless as doves.

Matthew 6:33 New King James Version (NKJV)

33 But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you.

Matthew – Chapter 6

Deuteronomy 6:4-9 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

4 “Hear, O Israel! The Lord is our God, the Lord is one! 5 You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might. 6 These words, which I am commanding you today, shall be on your heart. 7 You shall teach them diligently to your sons and shall talk of them when you sit in your house and when you walk by the way and when you lie down and when you rise up. 8 You shall bind them as a sign on your hand and they shall be as frontals on your forehead. 9 You shall write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates.

The teaching of God to the children of Israel, in the year 1451 B.C., can not be lessened in the world in which we live today. The application is directed to parents, in that our children should be taught the Words of God on an ongoing basis.

The articles that appear in this blog, provide scriptural teachings to the body of Christ, so that we will be more effective in fulfilling the Great Commission that was given to the Church (Matthew 28:18-20; Acts 1:8.) In order to achieve such an effectiveness, it is necessary for believers in Christ to have an intimate relationship with God the Father, through God the Son, by the empowerment of God The Holy Spirit. God will lay a path before us that we should follow. He will equip us for the completion of that trip and ministry. There are scriptures that will help us to prepare for the ministry that God has ordained for our lives. The following scriptures are key to our being prepared for the fulfillment of God’s call on our lives; they revolve around the keys of: 1. Knowing, 2. Being, 3. Abiding, and 4. Going. Please consider the scriptures of those four points of intimacy and ministry.

1. Knowing

Philippians 3:10, “That I might know Him.”

John 17:3 New King James Version (NKJV)

3 And this is eternal life, that they may know You, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom You have sent.

In this verse we see a text book definition of “eternal life,” which is an intimate relationship with God the Father, through God the Son. To “know” is to be intimate. The intimacy of this verse is parallel to that of Genesis 4:1, where it is written that Adam “knew” Eve his wife, and she conceived and bare Cain. To know someone is to have the highest degree of intimacy with that person that is possible. For us to “know” God is to have the highest degree of intimacy with Him that is possible.

In respect to knowing God, we also should consider the words of Philippians 3:10.

Philippians 3:10 New King James Version (NKJV)

10 that I may know Him and the power of His resurrection, and the fellowship of His sufferings, being conformed to His death,

The aspect of knowing God, is something that involves the ups and downs of having that holy relationship. Whether times are good or times are bad, we must understand that our response must be to always love God. If we win, we’ll praise Him. If we lose, we’ll praise Him. Whatever the case may be, we will always praise our Lord and Savior Jesus.

In respect to knowing God, we should also know the compassion of Christ, and the compassionate Christ.

Knowing God is also to know about the compassion of Christ, as it relates to the less-fortunate:

Matthew 25:40 New King James Version (NKJV)

40 And the King will answer and say to them, ‘Assuredly, I say to you, inasmuch as you did it to one of the least of these My brethren, you did it to Me.’

In order for us to know Jesus, we should also know the compassionate Christ:

Matthew 9:36 New King James Version (NKJV)

36 But when He saw the multitudes, He was moved with compassion for them, because they were weary and scattered, like sheep having no shepherd.

In order for us to know Jesus, we should also know how the compassionate Christ responded to the needs of the needy:

Matthew 15:32 New King James Version (NKJV)

Feeding the Four Thousand

32 Now Jesus called His disciples to Himself and said, “I have compassion on the multitude, because they have now continued with Me three days and have nothing to eat. And I do not want to send them away hungry, lest they faint on the way.”

2. Being

Mark 3:14 New King James Version (NKJV)

14 Then He appointed twelve, that they might be with Him and that He might send them out to preach,

The disciples were not only appointed/chosen by Jesus, they were appointed to “be with Jesus.” That relationship of “being” with Jesus prepared the disciples to be better able to go out and preach the Gospel of Jesus.

3. Abiding

John 15:4 New King James Version (NKJV)

4 Abide in Me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, unless it abides in the vine, neither can you, unless you abide in Me.

The aspect of abiding in Christ is two-fold. First, we are to have no known sin that is unconfessed, and of no interest in our life into which God is not brought into. It is for us to have no life in which God can not also share. Secondly, the believer in Christ takes all of their burdens to God, and gets all wisdom, life, and strength from God. It is not a ceasing of consciousness of the things of the world. But, it is a relationship with God in which nothing is allowed in the life of the believer which separates the believer from an intimate relationship with God.

4. Going

Matthew 28:19 New King James Version (NKJV)

19 Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit,

The disciples of Jesus, who were soon to be apostles, were commissioned to “go,” teach,” “baptize,” and “teach” (vs 20), the things that they had been taught by Jesus (vs 18). The apostles died. Their commission has been passed onto others who were made disciples, who are to make disciples of others, and others, and others.

The highest point of ministry is to lead people to a place where they will know, personally and intimately, “Christ,” who is “God with us,” (Isaiah 7:14/Matthew 1:23), so that when they come across a need in a person’s life, they will know the answer to the question:

“What would Jesus do?” (WWJD)

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Dinner With Jesus

Dinner With Jesus

This message is written to all of my friends that reside in nations all around the world. “Jesus is God!” The “religious leaders” who have lived from the beginning of time are dead and gone. Their graves are usually marked by some sort of shrine; their bones stay in their graves until the bones decay. The difference with Jesus is that His tomb has been empty ever since His resurrection, three days after His crucifixion.” And, do you know what? His bones were never left in the tomb to decay. He never suffered decay! (Acts 2:27). He has risen from the dead! He is alive! (Luke 24:1-7) And, He lives within every person’s spirit who knows Him (Jesus) as their Lord and Savior (John 14:20). Eternal life with God begins at the very exact moment that a person comes to know Jesus as their Lord and Savior (John 17:3). No one has to prove their love to God by doing “anything,” except by believing in Jesus with a belief of trust that He is their Lord and Savior (John 3:16). Jesus is love (1 John 4:18). He is not a vengeful God who tells His followers to kill people who don’t believe that He is God; but, it is true that Jesus is God (Isaiah 7:14/Matthew 1:18-25; John 10:30; John 14:9). Here is a very stern warning. Jesus is the only way for anyone to have eternal life in Heaven (John 14:6). Otherwise, a person’s eternity is in the Lake Of Fire (Revelation 20:15) that burns forever and ever (Revelation 20:10). Won’t you accept Jesus as your Lord and Savior?

The Perfect Stranger – Introduction

“THE PERFECT STRANGER” tells the story of Nikki, a troubled attorney who one day receives a mysterious dinner invitation from a man claiming to be Jesus of Nazareth. Throughout their evening of conversation, arguments and spirited debate, Nikki learns things she never knew about life, the universe, and most importantly, herself. Written by Pate Walters.

Consider how you would react if you were to have an invitation to have dinner with Jesus. What if you had been having a bad day? What would you think about the invitation? What would you think about your first meeting with Jesus? Would you have any questions for Him? What would those questions be? The introduction to the movie, “The Perfect Stranger,” will prepare you for the complete movie that follows at the bottom of the page. Follow the way that Jesus relates and reacts to the situation at hand. It is important for us to understand the meaning of the scripture:

“Come to me, all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest,” (Matthew 11:28).

As you watch “The Perfect Stranger,” consider the way that Jesus approaches Nikki and presents Himself as God. If you were to have a similar encounter with Jesus, what would you expect it to be like? Consider that Jesus is “God with us,” and that God’s Holy Spirit is involved in every incident where an unbeliever is being drawn to make a decision as to whether they will accept or reject Jesus as their personal Lord and Savior. The invitation is easily accepted:

“For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life,” (John 3:16).

The link to the movie follows:

Backup link

https://www.tbn.org/programs/perfect-stranger/watch/perfect-stranger

The Perfect Stranger – Full Length Movie – No Commercials – Courtesy Of Trinity Broadcasting Network

105 – The Second Coming Of Christ

Differences Between the Rapture And Second Coming

The second coming of Christ is the subject of this post. This prophetic return of Christ to earth from heaven will take place at the end of the seven-year tribulation, at the Battle of Armageddon. Following the second coming of Christ will be the 1,000 year reign of Christ, which is also called the millennium and the Kingdom of God. The marriage supper of the Lamb will take place on earth, during the millennium. Immediately preceding the second coming of Christ will be the marriage of the Lamb in Heaven, between Christ (the Bridegroom) and the raptured church (the bride). A distinction will be made between the rapture of the church and the second coming of Christ; the rapture occurs first.

A description of these future events can be found in the following chapters and verses of the Bible:

Concerning the return of Christ to earth by “the saints,” or by “the holy ones:”

Zechariah 14:1-16: vs 5 says that Christ will be accompanied by: “6918. qadosh.” Definition: sacred, holy. NASB Translation: consecrated (1), Holy (8), holy (50), Holy One (44), holy one (3), holy ones (6), one is holy (1), saints (2).

Zechariah 14:5 New King James Version (NKJV)

5 Then you shall flee through My mountain valley, For the mountain valley shall reach to Azal. Yes, you shall flee As you fled from the earthquake In the days of Uzziah king of Judah. Thus the Lord my God will come, And all the saints with You.

Zechariah 14:5 New International Version (NIV)
5 You will flee by my mountain valley, for it will extend to Azel. You will flee as you fled from the earthquake in the days of Uzziah king of Judah. Then the Lord my God will come, and all the holy ones with him.

Of the translations that say that Christ will return with “the saints” are the KJV and NKJV. Of the translations that say that Christ will return with “the holy ones,” are the NASB, NIV, HCSB, NLT, ESV.

Zechariah’s prophecy was made to Jews, about a Jewish matter, which is the return of Messiah to defeat the attackers of Israel (all of the nations) at the Battle of Armageddon (Zech 14:1-3) (487 B.C.). Consider the significance of the words, “all of the nations.” Relate that phrase to the world of today where the majority of the nations of the world oppose Israel, especially through the United Nations. Consider where the United States Of America might fit into such a scenario.

Zechariah would not have had any knowledge of: “the New Testament saints of God, the born again believers of Christ, or the church” (the church having been caught up to heaven, having gone before the judgment seat of Christ, and standing with Christ at the marriage of the lamb, awaiting their return to earth, with Christ to stand on the Mount Of Olives). “Holy ones,” best suits the New Testament saints, which are the bride of Christ; Israel is not the bride of Christ. Consider 2 Corinthians 11:2, where the Apostle Paul addresses the church as being the bride of Christ.

2 Corinthians 11:2 New King James Version (NKJV)
2 For I am jealous for you with godly jealousy. For I have betrothed you to one husband, that I may present you as a chaste virgin to Christ.

A number of years ago, a Christian magazine wrote an article about the differences in the preaching and teaching of Christ, as opposed to that of the Apostle Paul. Whereas, Paul emphasized “salvation by grace through faith,” Christ’s teachings were more related to “the Kingdom.” Consider the following verse of scripture that relates to the time of tribulation. Our Lord’s Words have been changed and taken out of context by many people.

Matthew 24:14 New King James Version (NKJV)
14 And this “gospel of the kingdom” will be preached in all the world as a witness to all the nations, and then the end will come.

Note: Many people say, “the end will not come until the gospel of Christ has been preached to all of the world.” The correct wording of Christ is, “the gospel of the kingdom” must be preached, and then the end will come (“with that end being the second coming of Christ at the end of the tribulation,” my words). Christ had taught about the Kingdom to Jews in the past. Now, in the Mount of Olives discourse, He explains the importance of teaching “that same gospel of the Kingdom.” In the Gospel of Matthew, there are 55 verses that relate to “the kingdom” (New King James Version translation). This note is not designed to diminish the importance of teaching the Gospel of Christ, but to state the correct words that our Lord spoke in relation to a very important time of future history.

Consider also the next verse of scripture that, too, has been incorrectly taught. The words of the verse relate directly to the second coming of Christ, and not to the rapture of the church. No one knows the day when the rapture will take place, either, but it is important to be correct when applying scriptures to sermons and lessons.

Matthew 24:36 New King James Version (NKJV)
36 “But of that day and hour no one knows, not even the angels of heaven, but My Father only.

Matthew 24:29-31 New King James Version (NKJV)

The Coming of the Son of Man

29 “Immediately after the tribulation of those days the sun will be darkened, and the moon will not give its light; the stars will fall from heaven, and the powers of the heavens will be shaken. 30 Then the sign of the Son of Man will appear in heaven, and then all the tribes of the earth will mourn, and they will see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of heaven with power and great glory. 31 And He will send His angels with a great sound of a trumpet, and they will gather together His elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other.

Note: Vs 30-31 Christ returns with angels. The angels will gather Jews from all over the world (Deu 7:6) to Jerusalem for judgment (Matthew 24:40-41). These Jews had missed the rapture because of their lack of belief and saving faith in Christ when the rapture took place.

Mark 13:24-27: vs 24 Christ returns with His angels, who will gather His elect from all over the world (the Jews, Deu 7:6).

Luke 21:25-28: No mention is made of anyone accompanying Christ. Note: Luke was not an eyewitness of Christ; he was “an investigative reporter” (Luke 1:1-4) who interviewed eyewitnesses.

Note. The message of Christ to the disciples in the Mount of Olives discourse dealt with Jews. There was no detailed teaching by Christ to Jews about “the church.” Christ said that He would “build His church” (Matthew 16:18), but it would be His disciples who would take that message to unbelieving Jews and Gentiles, which would not take place until after the events of the Day of Pentecost (Acts 2), when the Holy Spirit began to dwell within the spirits of previously unbelieving Jews that came to belief in Christ as Messiah (Acts 2). However, it was in John 14:1-6 that Christ told His disciples that He would come back to earth from Heaven, and would take them back to Heaven with Him. This passage is a teaching of the rapture of the church, of which all believing Jews and Gentiles become members through their belief in Christ as Messiah.

Just as Christ discussed the rapture of the church in John 14:1-6, the Apostle Paul, also spoke about Christ’s catching up of the New Testament saints (1 Thessalonians 4:13-18, 1 Corinthians 15:50-54). In Paul’s letters, he shows that when Christ comes for His followers that He will come in the air, and will not touch planet earth until the time that He sets foot on the Mount of Olives at the Battle of Armageddon (Zech 14, Matt 24, Mark 13, Luke 21, Rev 19).

Notice that in each scripture of the rapture of the church (believers in Christ), it is a joyous occasion. However, at the second coming of Christ, His purpose is judgment, with earth-dwelling unbelievers being in great fear and uncertainty, with Christ’s judgment imminent (Zech 14:12-14; Matt 24:29-31; Mark 13:24-27; Luke 13:25-27).

Notice that at the time of the rapture of the Church, Christ will take all born again believers in Christ with Him to Heaven (John 14:6). At the second coming of Christ, Christ will return to earth with His raptured believers, where He will stand on the Mount of Olives at Jerusalem (Zechariah 14:4).

From the Revelation verses below, consider the judgment and fear that Christ is inflicting on the unbelieving earth dwellers at the Battle of Armageddon. (Rev 19:11-16; 17-18; 19-21). Consider the words, “earth dwellers.”

Revelation 3:10 New Living Translation (NLT)
10 “Because you have obeyed my command to persevere, I will protect you from the great time of testing that will come upon the whole world to test those who belong to this world.

Revelation 6:10 New Living Translation (NLT)
10 They shouted to the Lord and said, “O Sovereign Lord, holy and true, how long before you judge the people who belong to this world and avenge our blood for what they have done to us?”

Revelation 13:8 New Living Translation (NLT)
8 And all the people who belong to this world worshiped the beast. They are the ones whose names were not written in the Book of Life that belongs to the Lamb who was slaughtered before the world was made.

It should be known that The Swindoll Study Bible uses the New Living Translation. Many people trust the judgment of Dr. Swindoll in choosing the NLT. Consider the following information on Dr. Swindoll.

http://insight.org/
http://store.insight.org/p-1816-the-swindoll-study-bible-nlt.aspx

From the Revelation verses below, notice that the marriage of the lamb takes place in heaven. (Rev 19:7-8)

Christ, the bridegroom, and His bride (the raptured church/born again believers in Christ) return to earth from heaven. Christ will speak victory over the forces of the Anti-Christ. The marriage supper will take place on earth after the victory at Armageddon, at the end of the tribulation. The Bride, the Bridegroom, and the guests will be present at the marriage supper during the millennium. The guests are the Old Testament saints and the tribulation saints (Rev 19:9; 11-21).

Revelation 19 New King James Version (NKJV)

Heaven Exults over Babylon

1 After these things I heard a loud voice of a great multitude in heaven, saying, “Alleluia! Salvation and glory and honor and power belong to the Lord our God! 2 For true and righteous are His judgments, because He has judged the great harlot who corrupted the earth with her fornication; and He has avenged on her the blood of His servants shed by her.” 3 Again they said, “Alleluia! Her smoke rises up forever and ever!” 4 And the twenty-four elders and the four living creatures fell down and worshiped God who sat on the throne, saying, “Amen! Alleluia!” 5 Then a voice came from the throne, saying, “Praise our God, all you His servants and those who fear Him, both small and great!”

6 And I heard, as it were, the voice of a great multitude, as the sound of many waters and as the sound of mighty thunderings, saying, “Alleluia! For the Lord God Omnipotent reigns! 7 Let us be glad and rejoice and give Him glory, for the marriage of the Lamb has come, and His wife has made herself ready.” 8 And to her it was granted to be arrayed in fine linen, clean and bright, for the fine linen is the righteous acts of the saints.

9 Then he said to me, “Write: ‘Blessed are those who are called to the marriage supper of the Lamb!’” And he said to me, “These are the true sayings of God.” 10 And I fell at his feet to worship him. But he said to me, “See that you do not do that! I am your fellow servant, and of your brethren who have the testimony of Jesus. Worship God! For the testimony of Jesus is the spirit of prophecy.”

Christ on a White Horse

11 Now I saw heaven opened, and behold, a white horse. And He who sat on him was called Faithful and True, and in righteousness He judges and makes war. 12 His eyes were like a flame of fire, and on His head were many crowns. He had a name written that no one knew except Himself. 13 He was clothed with a robe dipped in blood, and His name is called The Word of God. 14 And the armies in heaven, clothed in fine linen, white and clean, followed Him on white horses. 15 Now out of His mouth goes a sharp sword, that with it He should strike the nations. And He Himself will rule them with a rod of iron. He Himself treads the winepress of the fierceness and wrath of Almighty God. 16 And He has on His robe and on His thigh a name written:

KING OF KINGS AND
LORD OF LORDS.

The Beast and His Armies Defeated

17 Then I saw an angel standing in the sun; and he cried with a loud voice, saying to all the birds that fly in the midst of heaven, “Come and gather together for the supper of the great God, 18 that you may eat the flesh of kings, the flesh of captains, the flesh of mighty men, the flesh of horses and of those who sit on them, and the flesh of all people, free and slave, both small and great.”

19 And I saw the beast, the kings of the earth, and their armies, gathered together to make war against Him who sat on the horse and against His army. 20 Then the beast was captured, and with him the false prophet who worked signs in his presence, by which he deceived those who received the mark of the beast and those who worshiped his image. These two were cast alive into the lake of fire burning with brimstone. 21 And the rest were killed with the sword which proceeded from the mouth of Him who sat on the horse. And all the birds were filled with their flesh.

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Christ Above All

Above All

2 Corinthians 11:4 New King James Version (NKJV)

“For if he who comes preaches another Jesus…”

Ephesians 2:8 New King James Version (NKJV)

“For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God,”

Galatians 2:16 New King James Version (NKJV)

“knowing that a man is not justified by the works of the law but by faith in Jesus Christ, even we have believed in Christ Jesus, that we might be justified by faith in Christ and not by the works of the law; for by the works of the law no flesh shall be justified.”

Romans 3:23 New King James Version (NKJV)

“for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God,”

Romans 5:8 New King James Version (NKJV)

“But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.”

Romans 6:23 New King James Version (NKJV)

“For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.”

Romans 8:38-39 New King James Version (NKJV)

38 For I am persuaded that neither death nor life, nor angels nor principalities nor powers, nor things present nor things to come, 39 nor height nor depth, nor any other created thing, shall be able to separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.

Romans 10:13 New King James Version (NKJV)
“For whoever calls on the name of the Lord shall be saved.”

Colossians 1:27 New King James Version (NKJV)

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

2 Corinthians 5:17 New King James Version (NKJV)

“Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new.”

2 Corinthians 5:21 New King James Version (NKJV)

“For He made Him who knew no sin to be sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him.”

John 17:3 New King James Version (NKJV)

3 And this is eternal life, that they may know You, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom You have sent.

John 10:28 New King James Version (NKJV)

“And I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; neither shall anyone snatch them out of My hand.”

John 3:16 New King James Version (NKJV)

“For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.”

Luke 1:46-47 King James Version (KJV)

46 And Mary said, My soul doth magnify the Lord,

47 And my spirit hath rejoiced in God my Saviour.