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The Age of Concrete

Scripture: Matthew 27:46, Numbers 22:1-41, Psalms 37:8
Date: 03/01/2015 
Did you know that China produces and consumes about 60% of the world's cement? The Three Gorges Dam alone required 16 million tons of it.
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Doug Batchelor: Hello friends. This is Doug Batchelor. How about an amazing fact? Did you know that China produces and consumes about 60% of the world's cement? The Three Gorges Dam alone required 16 million tons of it. To put China's massive 21st Century construction and concrete consumption into perspective, Bill Gates made a mind-blowing comparison. According to his blog, between 2011 and 2013, China consumed six point six gigatons of concrete. By the way, a gigaton is a billion tons.

That's more than the US used in the entire 20th Century. And consider what the US built during that 100 years between 1901 and 2000. All those skyscrapers, the Interstate, the Hoover Dam and the list goes on and on. But all that concrete only amounted to 4.5 gigatons and China used 6.6 gigatons in three years. Friends, did you know the book of Daniel predicted that the time just before Christ comes, will be identified as The Age of Concrete. Stay with us. We're going to learn more as Amazing Factsbrings you this edition of, Bible Answers Live.

[PROGRAM INTRODUCTION]

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Welcome listening friends to Bible Answers Liveand if you have a Bible question, we have lines open. The number, free phone call, 800-GOD-SAYS. That's 800-463-7297, will bring your Bible question into our studio here in the capital of California and we'd like to invite those, who maybe have never called in with a question before. Give us a call. This program is designed to do our best to address your questions related to the word of God, the Bible and the Christian life. And so if you have a question, a couple of lines still open. 800-463-7297. You're ready? 800-463-7297. My name is Doug Batchelor.

Jëan Ross. My name is Jëan Ross. Good evening friends, and Pastor Doug. Let's begin the program with prayer. Dear Father, once again we thank you that we have this opportunity to open up your word. To study and to have our questions answered, from scripture. So Lord, we ask your blessings about our time. Be with those who are listening, and just lead us into deeper and a fuller understanding of your will for our lives. For we ask this in Jesus name, Amen.

Pastor Doug: Amen.

Pastor Jëan: Pastor Doug, you opened the program by talking about this concrete boom in China, and it's just astounding. Hard to imagine that more concrete was used in just three years roughly, three years than was used in the United States in 100 years.

Pastor Doug: I know. I believe it. It's staggering but I've been to China and I've never seen anything like it. I've been there about four times, if you include trips to Hong Kong and you see a sea of cranes. Matter of fact, they say that's the national bird, it's the construction crane. Because there are cranes like a forest. Because they are building so much and it's not just one town it's from Shanghai-- I grew up in New York City, but when I went to Shanghai, which is the biggest city in the world. You can drive for an hour and it's like you never left Manhattan.

It just goes on and on and on. Skyscraper after skyscraper and it's just phenomenal. A million people, I'm sorry. It's like that all over the country. The reason I teased people a little bit with this fact tonight is because it is true that there is a prophecy in Daniel and if you grab your Bibles friends, Daniel 2:32, talks about this dream King Nebuchadnezzar had of this mineral image that outlines the kingdoms of the world, from the time of Daniel until the second coming of Jesus.

And Babylon’s identified as the head of gold and the arms and the chest were of silver. And that represents the Middle Persian kingdom. Which used silver in its currency and then the belly and the thighs are bronze. And bronze was the principle metal of armor for the Greeks. And the legs were of iron. And iron was the great advantage of the Roman military. But then it says that after the Roman Empire divides, its feet are iron and miry clay, I think it says in the King James Version.

And a number of scholars say, up until right about that time that the division of the Roman Empire as a principal, permanent buildings were stone but they had begun to refine how to use concrete. And reinforced concrete, which is the number one building material in the world today, is iron mixed with miry clay. I mean, if you lived in Bible times, and you saw them pouring concrete mud into an iron frame, what would you call it? They didn't know the word concrete. That's a new invention. They said," It's iron and miry clay."

And that's the age we're living in. Concrete is the number one building material in the world today. And we're living down, in the end of time according to that vision, in Daniel chapter two. And we have a lesson that outlines the whole vision, gives you the panorama of the kingdoms of the world, from the time of Daniel, until Jesus comes again. And we're going to offer that to anyone.

Pastor Jëan: We have a lesson called the Millennial Man, dealing with Daniel 2. Of course, Pastor Doug, the exciting part about the vision of Daniel 2, is that, during that time period of the feet of iron and clay, the next thing that Nebuchadnezzar saw in his dream and then Daniel also saw, was a stone that came and struck the image upon its feet. Daniel explains that to be second coming of Christ. So, we're living very close to the second coming of Jesus.

If you'd like to learn more about this very important and fascinating prophecy, give us a call and ask for the lesson called The Millennial Man, dealing with Daniel chapter two and we'll be happy to send that to anybody who calls and asks. You can also read it for free online, at the Amazing Factswebsite. The number to call for our resource line is 800-835-6747. You can ask for the study called Millennial Man. Again, that number is 800-835-6747 and the lesson is Millennial Man.

Pastor Doug:All right.

Pastor Jëan: Well Pastor Doug I think we are ready to go to the phone lines. We have Josiah listening from Texas. Josiah, welcome to the program.

Josiah: Hi.

Pastor Doug: Hi. Thanks for your patience.

Josiah: Thanks. I had a question about a certain passage in Revelation. In Revelation 6:9-11. It's talking about the seals. A bunch of seals being opened. It seems like a time of great troubles coming upon the earth. It says,"When he opened the fifth seal, I saw under the altar, the souls of them that were slain for the word of God and for the testimony which they held in. They call with a loud voice saying, "How long my Lord, holy and true. Do you not judge and avenge our blood on them that dwell on the earth?"

White robes are given to them and everyone one of them-- is said that they should rest for a little season till their brethren and fellow servants should be killed as they were and it should be fulfilled." So, it gives me impression that, when they're slain for their testimony, that they're under the altar. Maybe, like a big altar in heaven and when they die, red robes or white robes are given to them during their great tribulation I guess or something like that.

Doug: Well, keep in mind, and Pastor Ross is our resident expert on Revelation but the visions in Revelation are given with a lot of powerful symbols and the symbols have real meaning but you don't want to take them all too literally because you get into Revelation 13, it talks about a beast with seven heads. Same thing, you've got a woman riding a beast with seven heads in Revelation 17 and there's just a lot of symbols. Symbols have meaning. Now, when it talks about souls under the altar. You know, if a person dies and they're saved, if they were murdered, they're not in heaven crying. Would you agree?

Josiah: Yes.

Pastor Doug: Who wants to die and go to heaven and sit under an altar and cry? So, this is talking about justice crying out. If you look in, chapter five of Genesis, I think, when Cain kills Abel or chapter four?

Pastor Jëan: Yeah. Four. Nine through ten.

Pastor Doug: It says, "The blood of Abel, cried out to God." Now, Abel's blood didn't have a little voice box that was crying. It was talking about justice was crying out. That's the language that's used in the Bible. So, when it talks about the souls under the altar crying out for justice-- this is described as a time of great persecution. That there were others that were going to join them. It says, "Your fellow servants that will be killed as you are." So, the time of the fifth seal, a lot of Christians lose their lives and are murdered.

Pastor Jëan: You know, it's been identified, this time period as the time period of, The Reformation. And roughly if you want to time frame it, it's about the 1500's through to the early to mid-1700s. It was a time of severe persecution that came upon the reformers. And if you follow the sequence of the different seals: the opening of the first, second, third, fourth and so on, that’s the time frame, historically, that is being identified here.

"This time period of severe persecution that came upon the Church, and for a while, they were probably many who wondered, "Lord, how long is this going to last?" "Why is this that it seems that the truth is being trodden under foot?" And yet God said, "There is a plan and it’s not going to last forever, there will be a limit." But in the meantime, God said, "Be encouraged by the truth and the promise of eternal life.

Pastor Doug: Yes, there is a time when we probably thought, well, that too many Christians are dying for their faith. And we’ve just seen in the news, in the recent weeks-

Pastor Jëan: Yes, increasingly.

Pastor Doug: -how ISIS is- yes, they’re executing people specifically for their faith and it’s going to happen more, I think, just before the end. Thank for your question. I appreciate that, Josiah

Pastor Jëan: We have Laurie, listening from Canada, Alberta. Laurie, welcome to the program.

Laurie: Thank you, can you hear me?

Pastor Doug: Loud and clear, even from Canada.

Laurie: Good. Ephesians 4:8-9 has a passage that is very hard to understand and I’ve tried it for a long time. I’m going to ask you to turn there and tell me what it means, when it says when it says, "He- Jesus, led captivity captive." Where did he lead them?

Pastor Jëan: All right, well, let me read verse seven. This is Ephesians 4:7.

Laurie: Yes, that’s fine.

Pastor Doug: "But to each one of us grace was given according to the measure of Christ’s gift. Therefore, He says, 'When He ascends on high, He, being Christ. He led captivity captive and gave gifts to men." Jesus, when he ascended to Heaven, He didn’t ascend alone, there were some who were resurrected with Christ, you read about in Chapter 27, or is it Chapter 28 of Matthew? And it says, "Those who had been captive by death, He led free." And it says, "And He gave gifts to the men." After Christ ascended to Heaven, in 10 days, He poured out the Holy Spirit and gave the gifts of the Spirit at Pentecost.

Pastor Jëan: I think the verse you’re referring to is Matthew 27:52, where it talks about the graves being opened and many of the bodies of the saints that have fallen asleep, arose. So, there was a resurrection that took place and it’s believed that these were resurrected at that time, ascended with Christ to Heaven. Because we have no record of them, being involved in the Early Church, during the time period of the Book of Acts.

Laurie: Interesting. Wow.

Pastor Doug: So, yes, people have been captive by death and through the resurrection and the ascension of Christ, Jesus, "He led captivity captive." In another word, He enslaved or captivated the death that was holding them, so they were set free. And then He gave gifts of the Holy Spirit under the people. So, we do--

Laurie: That’s wonderful.

Pastor Doug: Yes, we have a lesson, actually that deals with the subject of death and resurrection. And it’s called, Are the dead really dead? We’ll be happy to send you, Laurie, a free copy of that.

Pastor Jëan: The number to call is 800-835-6747 and the study guide is called, Are the dead really dead? Dealing with the subject of what happens to a person when he dies? When does he receive his reward, we'll be happy to send it to anybody who calls and asks. The next call is Dustin, and he’s listening from Orlando, Florida. Dustin, welcome to the program.

Dustin: Hi. How are you guys doing tonight?

Pastor Doug: Good. We’re going to be in your neighborhood, what? Next October.

Dustin: Next October? Okay. I’m looking forward to seeing you guys.

Pastor Doug: Where is it? Spring Meadow?

Pastor Jëan: I think so, yes. Northern part of Orlando.

Dustin: Spring Meadow. Awesome. Well, my question is regarding a little bit of history, I was on the website, the "Bible History Timeline" website and I was looking at Jesus. And was I just interested how he was depicted and I was wondering if the Bible gives us any hints or clues about the race, the ethnicity of Jesus, and why he was depicted in a certain ways?

Pastor Doug: Well, first of all, I want to put a lot of stock in what you see in some of the artists depictions, whether it’s angels or Jesus. Artists-- when different Christians evangelists and ministries use artworks, they have to get what’s out there. And what the Bible does tell us about Jesus is, his appearance, it says, "He has no form or comeliness that we should desire him." In other words, Jesus looked probably much like a typical Hebrew living in the area between Bethlehem and Galilee.

The reason I say that is, He frequently was able to melt into the crowd, just disappear, and even when he was betrayed he looked so much like the other apostles, that the religious leaders said, "You need to identify which one He is," to Judas with a kiss, "because we might grab the wrong one."

And so, the idea that Jesus was always around, wearing white robes with a blue trim and he had shoulder-length chestnut hair and hazel eyes. Some of that came from a-- it’s called an apocryphal description of a Roman soldier from like the third century.

In other words, someone made up this and, "Oh yeah, this Roman soldier described Jesus," and artists have gotten their concept from that, but it’s not anywhere in the Bible and it’s a very doubtful description. And now as far as Jesus’s family tree, if you look in Matthew 1, it tells of the ancestry of Jesus and Jesus had; Ruth as an ancestor, she was a Moabite. He had Tamar in his ancestry, she was Canaanite. He had Rehab, who was a Canaanite in his ancestry. So, if you start looking through the family tree of Jesus, He had a kaleidoscope of different people in his blood.

Dustin: Interesting. You mentioned the apocryphal books, I’ll just ask very quickly, is there a reason why they are not included in the Bible? Like Maccabees and some of the other books?

Pastor Doug: Yes, the Maccabees would sort of be in a different category, it is a fairly accurate history, but most of the Bible’s commentators didn’t view it as inspired. And the way that they call, a lot of the apocryphal books appeared after the fact: they appeared years later, they aren’t referenced by any of the Bible writers. In other words, you’re going to find Peter referring to Paul’s writings, and you’re going to find Paul referring to Peter, and you’re going to find Jude referring to Peter.

And all the books that are included in the New Testament cross-reference and endorse one another. The apocryphal books appear out of nowhere and none of the other Bible writers mentioned them-- or do they quote from. So they’re of very doubtful origin. Many of them were written after the Roman Church became organized, to try and prove a point someone would write a book and say, "Hey, we discovered a new book," and it would prove their point. [laughs] But there was no history of the book existing before that.

Dustin: Well, thank you so much. Very helpful. I appreciate it.

Pastor Doug: All right. Hey, thanks. Appreciate your question, Dustin. God bless.

Pastor Jëan: We have Jeanie, listening from Washington. Jeanie, welcome to the program.

Jeanie: Hi, how are you doing tonight?

Pastor Doug: Doing good. How can we help you?

Jeanie: I was wondering if there is anywhere in the Bible that indicate, how long Adam and Eve were alive before they sinned? And if they had any children there in the time before they sinned?

Pastor Doug: Well, all we can do is just use some educated guesses. Because one of the last things God said to Adam and Eve was, "Be fruitful and multiply." And obviously, they had perfect health which means they had perfect fertility. They hadn’t had any children yet because it mentions that when Cain was born, it was after sin. So the time they were in Eden, enjoying Paradise before they were tempted by the Devil, was probably not very long. Probably less than a year, maybe a few months.

Just because the Devil when he attacks, he usually does what they call a blitzkrieg. He does it quickly before a person’s ready. And I think shortly after Creation, the Devil went after them because he resented these new creatures made in the image of God that could procreate. So that’s just again an educated guess, based on some reasoning but we don’t have a figure in the Bible, how long it was? We do know how long Adam had lived, it says he was 930 years, but how much of that was in the Garden of Eden, before sin? It doesn’t say.

Jeanie: It seems that they wouldn’t start counting until sin because they were dying until after they sinned?

Pastor Doug: Well, I’ve heard that argued both ways, because when it talked how long a person lived, you would certainly count their life from the time of creation. So, we don’t know, but Bible does say- I think Adam was 930 years when he died.

Jeanie Thank you.

Pastor Doug: I appreciate your question, Jeanie. God bless.

Pastor Jëan: We have Wilford listening from Brooklyn, New York. Wilford, welcome to the program.

Wilfred: Hi, how are you?

Pastor Doug: Doing good, I appreciate your call and your question?

Wilfred: In the Book of Daniel, in chapter one and two, you have Daniel mentioned, and in chapter three, he drops off the scene, what has happened to Daniel?

Pastor Doug: In chapter three when it talks about Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego?

Wilfred: Right.

Pastor Doug: In the end of chapter two, it says that the king sets Daniel over the affairs of the kingdom. He becomes something of a prime minister. That often-- he's still a young man at that point that often involve travel and representing the king. When Nebuchadnezzar built the image, he may have deliberately not invited Daniel, because he knew how Daniel felt about idolatry.

Also Daniel's the one who said that your kingdom won't last forever, in Daniel 2. Nebuchadnezzar might have thought, "I don't think Daniel is going to join this party and I'm sending him off to do some emissary work somewhere," where he may have been off on official business, but you're right he's not mentioned in chapter 3, he is in Chapter 4 during Nebuchadnezzar’s dream.

Wilfred: You just said that the king might have sent him some business but in the same chapter three, it said that the King invited all these so called-[crosstalk]

Pastor Doug: All the representatives.

Wilfred: --and everybody else at the ceremony though.

Pastor Doug: Yes, I think that’s understood, he invited everybody that was in the kingdom. Daniel may have been actually out of the empire and they didn't travel very quick back then, they just had a horse was a rapid transit. I don't pastor Ross, if you've got any thoughts on that.

Pastor Ross: I think Nebuchadnezzar valued Daniel. He was the wisest man that he'd ever come across, that could interpret his dream and he didn't want to lose Daniel for sure as a counselor and yet he still wanted to make a point by building his golden image and having everyone bow down to it. It just seems that Nebuchadnezzar forgot about Daniel's three friends because he noticed, when they were brought before the king, the king said, “I'm going to give you another chance. When you hear the music bow down."

And they said, “Well King, but we don't need another chance, we're going to serve our God even if we die,” I'm just paraphrasing that. It seems as though the king was willing to give them another chance because he realized these are important people. It's going to be beneficial for my kingdom to keep them. Usually Kings don't give people a second chance especially in that type of situation. It almost appears as though the Nebuchadnezzar had forgotten about the three friends.

Pastor Doug: Yes. He deliberately didn't invite Daniel because he didn't want to lose Daniel to the death decree and he forgot to not invite Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego. [crosstalk] So that's speculation but you're right. You're absolutely right Daniel is missing in that story, so we can only guess he was either out of town or deliberately not put on the invitation list which he didn't mind one bit.

Wilfred: Okay, thank you.

Pastor Doug: All right. Appreciate your question Wilfred.

Pastor Ross: We have Ron listening from Akron Ohio. Ron welcome to the program.

Ron: How’re you doing?

Pastor Doug: Always better than we deserve. How’re you doing?

Ron: Good, not bad. My question is in regards to Isaiah 4:1-2. It appears that-- [crosstalk]

Pastor Doug: Can I read that to people?

Ron: Yes.

Pastor Doug: Your friends listening? It says, “And in that day, seven women will take hold of one man saying, "We will eat our own bread and wear our own apparel. Only let us be called by your name to take away our reproach.” Is that the main part you wanted?

Ron: Yes. It appears to me Isaiah is speaking about a full cycle of all factor or a Church that wants to-

Pastor Doug: Do its own thing.

Ron: -lead it's doctrine. Do its own thing.

Pastor Doug: Well, you’re not too far you're not too far off Ron. In the Bible a woman is often a symbol of a church and so spiritually speaking, when it says seven women that's a symbolic number in the Bible. Will take hold of one man saying, “We’ll eat our own bread.” What's the bread for the church? It’s the Word of God. "And we'll wear our own apparel." What's the apparel? It's the righteousness of Christ, "But we want to be called by your name," because Peter says, “There's no other name given among men by which we are saved to take away our reproach.”

So speaking of the last days is going to be all these religions that call themselves Christians, look at how many Christian churches there are. They have different theology though they all disagree so they're obviously not all true. But one more thought there's also a literal way that you read that prophecy. There was a great catastrophe that was coming on Israel through a war. And during that catastrophe when the men went out to war and they lost, a lot of women had no husbands.

And they would beg a man to marry them so they would have a family name in their line would go on. They'd have some offspring and be able to have a Social Security with your children taking care of you. Seven women taking hold of one man saying, “Look don't worry about feeding us and don't worry about clothing us. We’ll get our own food and clothes but give us a name to take away our reproach.” You see what's happening there? This was also a subtle prophecy talking about a great catastrophe that was coming during the Babylonian war in captivity.

So spiritual meaning a lot of churches in the last days that are going to take the name of Jesus but they don't use His bread and they don't use His righteousness. Literal meaning there would be a catastrophe where a lot of women would be looking for husbands. I hope that helps a little bit, appreciate your calling in Ron. How much time do we have before time for another call?

Pastor Ross: We have time for one more. We have Travis listening from Missouri. Travis we've got about two minutes before our break.

Travis: Hello.

Pastor Doug: Hey, Travis. Your question.

Travis: One of my daughter's favorite stories in the Bible is, Number 22, about Balaam and Balak and the talking donkey. It goes on for about three chapters. It’s a really good story and it's pretty deep and I was wondering about just significance of that story. It doesn't seem to fit for several reasons. [crosstalk]

Pastor Doug: As you said, what specifics to your question though because we're going to run out of time.

Travis: Balaam doesn't seem to be an Israelite. He’s a prophet but he's not of the Israelite. Is that true?

Pastor Doug: Yes, that would be correct. Even though he wasn't an Israelite, Balaam did have knowledge of the true God. There were other people that knew the true God that maybe were not directly connected with Abraham or the Israelites, just because Abraham came from Mesopotamia. Do you remember when Isaac and Rebecca were looking for a wife for Jacob? They sent Jacob back they said, “Marry a girl that believes in the true God” And they sent Jacob back to marry some of their kin that lived in Mesopotamia.

That's what happened when Isaac’s wife was chosen at the same time. We believe that Balaam came from that same group of people he knew the true God, he was a prophet of God. Matter of fact, his prophecies are included about Jesus. "A star would arise out of Jacob." You're listening to Bible Answers Live.

Pastor Jëan: Well, Pastor Doug, we coming up on a just a short break here to get some announcements, but before we do we always like to highlight one of the websites that amazing facts has to help people in their study of the word. A Bible universe, bibleuniverse.com is a great resource with people who go and go through a series of lessons prepared by Amazing Facts of various Bible subjects. Bibleuniverse.com.

Pastor Doug: Yes and they Bible lessons are in a plethora of different languages. If you know somebody that maybe they like to study the Bible not only in English but in Chinese, German, Hungarian, Macedonian, Romanian, Spanish Swedish, Arabic, Farsi, Indonesian, Japanese, I could go on and on. Go to bibleuniverse.com as Bible studies for the whole world at that website. We’ll be back in just a few minutes.

[COMMERCIAL BREAK]

Pastor Doug: Hello listening friends. This is Bible answers live if you've joined us along the way and we are ready and able to take your Bible questions only challenge you've got to call when lines open. If you have a Bible question pick up the phone, that number once again 800-463-7297. 800-God-Says, 800-463-7297 will bring your Bible question to headquarters. My name is Doug Bachelor.

Pastor Jëan: My name is John Ross and pastor we're ready to go to the phone lines. We have Egbert, who's listening from Belize. Egbert welcome to the program.

Egbert: Yes. Good night, Pastor Doug?

Pastor Doug: Evening.

Egbert: Good night, Pastor Ross?

Pastor Jëan: Hello.

Egbert: Yes, thanks for picking up my call. My question is in Revelation Chapter 1, when John, "The voice that spoke with Him, he turned and he like The Son of Man to the foot." He said, and white as snow, is that symbolic or is that real reality of Jesus Christ showing himself like color? Is he black there?

Pastor Doug: I believe that the description of Jesus that you find in Revelation Chapter 1, is an accurate description of what he really saw. Because John has not gone into vision yet in chapter one. It's not until later he says, "I heard a voice like a trumpet and I was caught away in the spirit." But Jesus literally appears to him. Now one reason I say that is a very similar depiction of Jesus is found in Daniel, is it at chapter seven and Ezekiel and Isaiah sees the Lord on His throne.

They all saw God as emanating light. His eyes are like burning fire. When it talks about his hair like white wool it's just talking about the purity. When Jesus was transfigured in Mark chapter nine it says, "He was shining whiter than any soap on earth could. His garments were glistening." It says it's almost like the light is emanating from his skin and so I want to say that this is any kind of reflection of what Jesus ethnicity is. I think it's far more Christ in His glory is what you're seeing here.

Pastor Jëan: Of course there are some symbols related to it. It speaks about Jesus standing amongst the seven branch candlesticks and talks about him holding these seven stars in his hand. It describes a two edged sword coming from his mouth. We know that that's a symbol that represents the Word of God but as Pastor Doug mentioned. When you do read for example in the Gospels when Christ was glorified it says, "His clothes shone as the Sun" and when Moses came down after communing with God on the mountain they had to put a veil over His face because of the shine, the glory of God was being reflected in His countenance.

Pastor Doug: Yes, well that's a good point that even in this vision, I think there's two places that talks about the sword coming out of his mouth. Is that also Revelation 19?

Pastor Jëan: Yes. Yes. Might the nations with the sword-- [crosstalk]

Pastor Doug: That's the word of God in his mouth but there are those who did see Jesus in vision and they just fell down as though they were dead. Hey Egbert, we appreciate your call. I was just visiting with some friends. Hopefully you listen to Faith FM. They're in Belize and that we know they broadcast a lot of Amazing Facts programs. Hope you'll give them our regards. God bless you. Appreciate your call.

Pastor Jëan: Again friends if you have a Bible question the number to call to our studio here is 800-463-7297. Looks like we have about two lines still open. Again that's 8004637297. A good time for you to give us a call. We'll try and get your question on tonight's program. We have E. Frank calling again from New York. E. Frank, thanks for calling back.

E. Frank: Yes. Good evening Pastor John and Pastor Ross. [crosstalk]

Pastor Doug: Let's hear.

Pastor Jëan: Good evening.

E. Frank: Yes. John with Pastor Bachelor I just like would like to say the Bible states that there must be tested in what we-- With the scripture it states quite clearly that there is no leeway between what's good and evil. It is if we just must be tested at any given understanding. Now my question to you is this, is it a good idea to conscientiously, under your own human understanding, you test it for the salvation and for the help of others to reach salvation? Or is it just better to interpret the scripture in the sense of God's understanding which is to detest evil, to avoid evil and to avoid encumbrances that you face as a Christian in everyday basis.

Pastor Doug: Well you're going to have to keep going. I'm not sure quite honestly exactly what you're asking.

E. Frank: Well, I'm asking is, can you interpret the scripture detestful of evil towards conversion of others or detestful of evil in understanding it?

Pastor Doug: Well there's that verse that says, "Try the spirits and hold fast that which is good." The Lord wants us to use our biblical judgment and even when it comes to another person's conversion. Jesus said, "You'll know them by their fruits." Some people say they love the Lord. They say they know they love the Lord and they could be wolves in sheep's clothing. The Lord says, "To determine that, do they have the fruits of the Spirit. Do they match the criteria?" I'm I answering what you're asking?

E. Frank: Yes.

Pastor Doug: Okay. Well yes. I think that that's the key. The Lord Jesus said, "When you judge judge with a righteous judgment and apply the principles in God's word." He's not talking about going around condemning people with that kind of judgment.

Pastor Jëan: Of course, there's a difference between judging somebody's motive and their actions. We can see if somebody is doing something wrong the Bible reveals to us what's right and wrong and we have to know people by their fruit but it's a different story when we are judging the heart. Only God knows the heart. There is a little bit of a distinction then. We ought to be wise and be able to discern but again that's a little different than us deciding whether or not somebody is sincere or loves the Lord or is saved.

Pastor Doug: Anyway, hey, we thank you for your question.

Pastor Jëan: We have Jamie listening from West Frankfort Illinois. Jamie welcome to the program.

Jamie: Hello, thanks for having me.

Pastor Doug: Thank you and your question.

Jamie: Yes. I'm calling back again this time. Okay, I have this question because it's been kind of bothering me and it's probably wrong. From what I am reading in the Bible I basically feel that the Jews which they have every right to be a little bit more of an importance to God but I basically feel like the Gentiles are kind of like the leftovers. I almost feel that if I were a Jew by blood I would maybe be of more value or more important to God.

Pastor Doug: No and let me give you a verse. Paul says, in Romans 1:16 "for I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ, for it is the power of God to salvation, for everyone who believes for the Jew first and also for the Greek or the Gentile." Same thing there. What does he mean for the Jew first? He's talking about sequence of time. See the Gospel was first presented to Abraham and his descendants for the purpose of their spreading it to others. It didn't mean that the Jews are of more value than anybody else.

Every people in the world is precious to God. The Bible says, "The Lord has made of one blood all nations" and the Bible also says, "God is no respecter of persons." Then Jesus said, "He that is Christ's is Abraham's seed." In other words you become a spiritual Jew. You're adopted into the family of God's children whenever you accept Jesus. It doesn't matter what your background is.

Then there are people, Jesus and John the Baptist and others, Paul said, "He is not a Jew," which is one outwardly. Back then they're talking about circumcision. He said, "you don't just go through a physical right and all over sudden you become precious in the eyes of God." Paul said, "he is not a Jew which is one outwardly but he is a Jew which is one inwardly."

Jamie: Okay.

Pastor Doug: The people who made up the first apostles and wrote the Bible were all Jewish with the exception of a couple of chapters in Daniel and maybe Esther but the people who also condemned Jesus were Jewish. There was good and bad in that same nation.

Jamie: Yes. Exactly and I guess that's why I feel since they denied Christ then they were like, "Okay, well then-- Paul is like, "Let me take this to the Gentiles then." I guess that just maybe a little bit of jealousy on my part.

Pastor Doug: Well, let me give you one more thing to think about. When God first called Israel and Moses said, the Lord said to them through Moses, "Do not think to say within yourselves that the Lord chose us, because we're better than other people." He said, "You are a stubborn and a stiff neck people, but I chose you to show that I can save stubborn, stiff neck people." That really is saying that they're like all of us. We're all rebellious.

All of us have gone astray like a sheep and turned his own ways. The nation of Israel God chose them to illustrate salvation to the world and to present Christ to the world but they had the same share of ups and downs just about any nation would have. I have a book I can send you on that for free Jamie. It's called, Spiritual Israel, explains how the Jews fit into this question you're asking.

Pastor Jëan: The number to call for our resource line is 800-835-6747. You can ask the book, Spiritual Israel. We'll be happy to send it to you Jamie or anyone who calls and asks. You can also read the book for free online at amazingfacts.org. Again, the book is called, Spiritual Israel. Our next call is Kenny and he's listening from Paradise, California. Kenny, welcome to the program.

Kenny: Thanks for taking my call. Isaiah 14:12-13, my question is it talks about the-- I'll serve my throne above the stars of God." Did Lucifer actually have a throne in heaven before he was cast down or is this poetic way of saying about Babylon?

Pastor Doug: God evidently has some kind of hierarchy among the angels. Bible talks about angels that are greater and strength. There some by the throne of God that cry, "Holy, Holy, Holy." and Lucifer was the chief of the angels. Lucifer may have had a seat. The word throne and seat there would be similar. He was basically saying I want my position above the position of God.

Kenny: Yes, I understand that but I just wondered you think they might have a throne or a special thing? That sound like to me that's what it is, I was just curious.

Pastor Doug: Well, that word throne there can be used just to talk about his position, his leadership. It could be that he had a literal place. I mean God has a literal place where He sat and He ruled and Lucifer as the chief of the angels there may have been a place. It was very common in Bible times for kings to have many other kings and leaders that sat at a table with him during special functions. Talks about King Saul and the others that sat at his table and even Maradoch the king and David. Lucifer may have had a special seat of honor. Jesus talks about chief seats.

Kenny: He was number one. I don't think we give enough credit to Lucifer before he fell.

Pastor Doug: No, he was a powerful angel.

Kenny: It might've been eons and eons of time observing all the knowledge of God and everything. I've been thinking about this lately and I just think that he was just a marvelous creature.

Pastor Doug: Yes, had to be.

Kenny: Then he decided against the laws-- you think that it could be a possibility, having a literal throne there.

Pastor Doug: There's a possibility that somewhere in the courts if heaven that he had an office. We're using our terms.

Kenny: That's basically what my thoughts were and I appreciate you guys taking my call.

Pastor Doug: Absolutely. Kenny, before you go we have a lesson that talks about, Did God make a devil? And talks about the origin of Lucifer and answer some of these question, though I don't know that is specifically talks about where his headquarter might be.

Pastor Jëan: The number to call for our resource line is 800-935-6747. You can ask the lesson, Did God create the devil? Matter of fact you can read it online for free get to just amazingfacts.org. We have Christopher who's listening from New York. Christoper, welcome to the program.

Christoper: Thank you. Thank you for taking my call. It's great listening to your show.

Pastor Doug: Well, thank you. We're glad you're tuned in and your question tonight?

Christoper: Well I would like to see how you would interpret two versus scripture. How the best way to explain it and would it be Psalm 37:8 or in the Beatitudes, which I think is in Matthew 5, where it talks about the meek shall inherit the earth or living forever on earth. That does that literally mean that people will live for-- Or I mean there's a Christian we believe there are home is in heaven when we die but knows two verse of scripture could that be interpreted as living forever. Is it going to be a new earth? Like does it mean after the rapture? I want to get some clear understanding on that if I could?

Pastor Doug: Great question. I'm really glad you asked. Because this is a common misunderstanding and people reading the Bible like yourself they see, there seems to be a paradox. Let me explain, in the Bible when Jesus comes, Christ is very clear. You can read in John 14, He said, "I go to prepare a place for you and in my Father's house there are many mansions." He's gone to heaven. And He said, "If I go and prepare a place, I will come again and receive you unto myself that where I am, there you might be also."

And when Jesus comes, 1st Thessalonians 4, "We are caught up to meet Him in the air. We go with Him to heaven. The mansions He's prepared here God the Father dwells. We live in reign with Him for a thousand years." Then the Bible says that and this is Revelations 21. "After the 1,000 years the new Jerusalem descends from God out of heaven to the earth and the saved will go forth." It says, "They thread upon the wicked for their ashes unto the soles of their feet, because God has created a new heavens and a new earth."

The word heavens there means atmosphere. He creates a new world, with a new atmosphere. He purifies this world and blessed are the meek for they will inherit the earth and we will live forever and ever. It says in Isaiah, they'll plant vineyards and eat the fruit them. They'll build houses and inhabit them. We'll mount up with wings like eagles. The child will play with the lion and the ox and the bear and they won't hurt or destroy. It describes very earthly things happening but it's like Adam and Eve now. So God then restores paradise to earth after the millennium.

Christopher: Okay.

Pastor Jëan: We have a study guide dealing with this, with all the scriptures there. Revelations 20 and 21. It's called, A Thousand Years of Peace. We'll be happy to send that to you Christopher or anybody who calls and asks. The number is 800-835-6747. Ask for that study guide called A Thousand Years of Peace. We also have another following that that talks about, a Colossal city in space.

It's all about heaven and the earth created new at the end of that 1,000 year period. We'll also send that to you for free. Again, the number is 800-835-6747. You can ask for the study guide dealing with the 1,000 year millennium and then also a Colossal city in space. Our next caller is who do we have? Rob, listening from Dearborn, Michigan. Rob, welcome to the program.

Rob: Yes, hello pastors. I love your broadcast, thank you.

Pastor Doug: Thank you.

Rob: What I wanted to ask you about is the first chapter of Ezekiel. Ezekiel describes this fantastic vision and the creatures and he describes the creatures having animal features, like an ox, like an eagle and so on. Later on the church, the early Christian Church seems to have adopted that symbolism for some of the disciples. Can you explain why exactly they did that and what's going on with that symbolism?

Pastor Doug: Well, I take a stab at it. I think Pastor Ross has a good answer on this also. These different creatures around the throne of God you find both in Ezekiel 1 and in Revelations 4. They're describing different aspects of Christ and His people even. Jesus is described some have said in the gospel of Matthew as a lion. He's described in Mark as an eagle. In the gospel of Luke, you have Jesus the man and in John He is Jesus, the sacrifice.

These are different facets or faces that tells something about God and the eagle being a symbol of speed and vision and the lion,you know, the majesty. Jesus is called the lion of the tribe of Judah. As you go around the throne you see different dimensions or different perspectives of who God is and His creatures that declared Him.

Pastor Jëan: It's interesting the order that's given Revelations 4, it begins with a lion and some have seen Him at the preincarnation position of Christ as the king, as the ruler. The next one is an ox. An ox is an animal of burden. An animal used for sacrifice and they said that it symbolizes the incarnation of Christ. The next one is a man and Jesus when He rose from the dead, He was sent up to the heaven as our high priest.

He's the Son of Man even though He's also the Son of God and he represents us before the Father. The eagle is sometimes identified with judgment or speed and some say that describing when Jesus comes as king of kings and lord of lords to execute judgment upon the earth. So you have a lion, you have the ox, you have the man, and you have the eagle.

Pastor Doug: It's a fascinating study that talks about these different facets of God's character. Does that help, Rob?

Rob: It does. Thank you pastors.

Pastor Doug: All right, God bless you. Appreciate your call and your question tonight.

Pastor Jëan: We have Lourdes who's listening from Jersey Shore, New Jersey. Lourdes, welcome to the program.

Lourdes: Hi, how are you? I'm so glad I got through.

Pastor Doug: Yes, we're glad you did too and your question tonight?

Lourdes: It comes from Matthew.27:46 it's been a question about, I don't know it's tormented me for my 63 years, you could say, I've been reading the bible. It's the part that says, "My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?" When Jesus is on the cross. I've asked questions, I've asked reverends, I've asked people and it's like, it's not satisfying me and I want to know what was Christ thinking at that moment, "My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?"

Pastor Doug: Well I won't pretend that I can enter the mind of the Lord and tell you exactly what he was thinking, but I will tell you what I believe--

Lourdes: What it meant, let me put it that way.

Pastor Doug: Yes. First of all, the Lord did not lose faith, because He ends that day by saying ,"Father into your hands I commit my spirit." There's a Psalm that Jesus was quoting so as Jesus is on the cross, He actually is shouting out one of the Psalms. The Psalm is Psalm 22. The first verse of Psalm 22, "My God, my God why have you forsaken me?" Now, if you continue reading in that Psalm, it is a Psalm of the crucifixion. It says, "They gape at me with their mouths like a raging and a roaring lion. Many bulls have surrounded me.

The strong bulls of Bashan they're--" He's surrounded. I am poured out like water, all my bones are out of joint. My heart is like wax that's melted within me." And you keep reading, and He says, "My tongue clings to my jaws," He was thirsty. He says, "Dogs have surrounded me. The congregation of the wicked has enclosed me. Listen, you're listening Lourdes? Verse 16, "They pierced my hands and my feet." He says in verse 18, "They divided my garments among them. For my clothing they cast lots."

He's describing the scenes of the crucifixion so that all of the Jews around the cross, they know that Psalm. When Jesus says, "My god, my God why have you forsaken me," Jesus is our high priest. He is quoting from one of the Messianic Psalms, the Psalms about when the Messiah comes. In that psalm, it says, "They pierced my hands and my feet, they gamble for my clothing." The very things that were happening before their eyes, Jesus was showing them I am fulfilling that. He was actually living out the very things in this Psalm. He's directing our attention to proof that he is the Messiah. Does that make sense?

Lourdes: Now I understand-- You're making me cry.

Pastor Doug: Praise the Lord. Good tears I hope. That mean that you understand.

Lourdes: Good tears, yes. I've finally gotten satisfied, yes sir. Thank you.

Pastor Doug: Well thank you. You made the whole program tonight worthwhile. We're glad that we could help you understand that. But read the whole Psalm. Read Psalm 22-

Pastor Jëan: Very powerful Psalm

Pastor Doug: And you'll see it's describing Jesus.

Lourdes: I'm going to read it now.

Pastor Jëan: Yes, absolutely.

Pastor Doug: All right God bless.

Pastor Jëan: I think we have time for one more caller. We have Eric listening from New Jersey. Eric, welcome to the program.

Eric: Hello.

Pastor Jëan: You're on air.

Pastor Doug: Yes, You're on air. Got about 60 seconds.

Eric: Hello.

Pastor Jëan: Eric, can you hear us?

Eric: Hello.

Pastor Doug: Eric, You're on. You might have your mute on or something. All right we're going to have to go to someone else.

Eric: Hello.

Pastor Jëan: All right we've got Anthony listening in Sacramento. Anthony, welcome to the program.

Anthony: Yes. Hello. I'm so glad. Look, I'll ask this question real quick. Predestination and election. Some people teach that, you have to be predestined or elected to be one of Christ's followers. Some people teach that grace to those who believe in Christ and I'm trying to find out the understanding of predestination or election. Are those individuals specifically elected to become Christ's followers or is grace offered to all who believe and trust in God?

Pastor Doug: All right, great question. You've asked at the end of the program, you've asked one of the biggest questions in the Christian church. We have a book, Can a Saved Man Choose to be Lost, we don't want you to go away without an answer. Please go to the Amazing Facts website. The quick answer is, God would not have any parish, He would have all men to be saved, we get to choose. That runs us out of time. Like everyone else, go to the website, amazingfacts.org and God willing, we'll study His word together again next week.

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