Moving Mountains

Scripture: Revelation 2:9, Luke 12:52-53, Genesis 14:18
Date: 07/17/2016 
June 1, 2016, the world's longest and deepest tunnel called the Gotthard Base Tunnel opened in Switzerland. Nearly seven decades after it was first proposed and 20 years after construction began. The 35 mile long twin board tunnel now creates a high speed rail link under the Swiss Alps. The new route will now connect Europe's busiest tunnel in the port of Rotterdam in the North Sea with Genoa, Italy in Mediterranean in record time and take a million trucks off the road that'll now go by train i
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Advert: Welcome to Bible Answers Live. Where you'll get honest answers to your Bible questions. Let's face it. It's not always easy to understand everything you read in the Bible. With 66 books and more than 700,000 words. The Bible can generate a lot of questions. If you'd like answers to your Bible questions, you've come to the right place. Now, here's your host, Pastor Doug Batchelor, President and Speaker of Amazing Facts.

Doug Batchelor: June 1, 2016, the world's longest and deepest tunnel called the Gotthard Base Tunnel opened in Switzerland. Nearly seven decades after it was first proposed and 20 years after construction began. The 35 mile long twin board tunnel now creates a high speed rail link under the Swiss Alps. The new route will now connect Europe's busiest tunnel in the port of Rotterdam in the North Sea with Genoa, Italy in Mediterranean in record time and take a million trucks off the road that'll now go by train instead.

When fully operational, around 260 freight trains and 65 passenger trains are expected to travel through the two parallel tunnels every day. The trains will reach speeds approaching a 100 miles an hour for freight and up to a 155 miles an hour for passengers. The Gotthard Base Tunnel is also the deepest railway tunnel in the world. With a maximum depth of approximately 7,500 feet or about a mile and a half. The new $12.5 billion tunnel required approximately 2,600 workers off and labouring around the clock in humid, noisy, dusty and blistering hot conditions.

In fact, were not for so powerful ventilation tunnels, the temperature inside the mountain would pass 150 degrees. Nine workers died while building the record breaking tunnel under Europe's largest mountainsa. You know, the Bible says that if you have enough faith, you can not only go through mountains, you can move them. Stay with us friends, we're going to talk about this on today's edition of Bible Answers Live.

Advert: You're listening to Bible Answers Live. Honest answers to your Bible questions. Our phone lines are now open. If you have a Bible related question, call us at 1-800-GOD-SAYS. That's 1-800-463-7297. Let's get to our first Bible question with Pastor Doug Batchelor and our co-host, Pastor Jean Ross.

Pastor Doug: Welcome listening friends to Bible Answers Live and this is the time if you have a Bible question there's nothing we enjoy more than searching the word with you. All you have to do is call in. We have plenty of lines open and you'll have a really good chance of getting your question on tonight's program. Here's the number again 1-800-GOD-SAYS. We use the Bible as our resource. 800-463-7297, one more time 800-463-7297 with your Bible questions in the studio. We'll be giving another resource number later. My name is Doug Batchelor.

Pastor Jean Ross: My name is Jean Ross. Good evening listening friends and Pastor Doug. As usual, let's start the program with prayer. Dear Father in heaven, we thank you once again that we're able to open up your word and study together. We ask your blessing upon this program. We ask a special blessing on those listening wherever they might be. Lord lead us into a clearer understanding of the Bible and its important teachings for we ask in Jesus name. Amen.

Pastor Doug: Amen.

Pastor Jean: Pastor, I'm sure you've been through some long tunnels in your travels. I know I've been through several. But to travel through a tunnel that is 35 miles long. That must be quite something.

Pastor Doug: It is. I've traveled through some tunnels, but I've never been through one that long. I've driven through some tunnels in the Alps. You probably have too. But I can imagine you probably get claustrophobia.

Pastor Jean: [laughs]

Pastor Doug: But as the trains going on a 155 miles an hour you would not be under the mountain very long. I guess that'd be about 15-20 minute ride [laughs]. But what makes me think about that verse where Jesus said in Mark 11:22, he said to them, "Have faith in God. For surely I say to you, whoever says this mountain be removed and cast into the sea and does not doubt in his heart, but believes in those things he says will be done. He'll have whatever he says."

Jesus said if you have faith you can move mountains. When I first read that verse I thought that meant if you have enough faith that you can move masses of dirt. But then I read another place in the Bible where it says that God takes our sins and casts them into the depths of the sea. So, the Lord isn't just talking about our having faith to move mountains and cast them into the sea, everyone is really struggling under the curse of a mountain of sin.

We wonder how can we have victory over these battles? Through faith all things can be done and we can have victory over all kinds of habits and practices. Some people have struggled. They've resisted temptation and fallen for years. They wondered, "Can I ever be free of whatever this addiction is, whatever this bad pattern is?" The Bible says that you can do all things through Christ. Is it possible without living as a captive to sin? Maybe you'd like to know about that and if you do, have faith, because we've got a free book for you.

Pastor Jean: We have a book. It's called Is It Possible to Live without Sinning? We'll be happy to send this to anybody who calls and asks. All you need to do is call our resource phone number. The number is 800-835-6747 and that's 800-835-6747. You can ask for the book called Is It Possible to Live without Sinning? I think you'll be encourage as you read that book. A lot of scripture references there. One more time, the number to call is 800-835-6747. That is the resource phone line and ask for the book Is It Possible To Live Without Sinning?

If you have a Bible question, the phone line near to the studio with you Bible question is 800-463-7297. That's 800-GOD-SAYS-463-7297. Well Pastor Doug, I think we're ready for our first call of this evening. We have Joseph who is listening in Virginia. Joseph, welcome to the program.

Pastor Doug: Hello, Joseph. You on the air?

Joseph: Yes, Doug. Thanks for accepting my call.

Pastor Doug: Absolutely. How can we help you tonight?

Joseph: The question is about the four signs in Matthew 24:29. I don't know if it's an official interpretation, but maybe a certain group, they interpret those signs to mean eventual happens. In the year 1755 the earthquake and then the 1780 the Dark Day and then 1833 the stars falling. I want to offer you a better interpretation.

Pastor Doug: Wait. Are you asking a question?

Joseph: What?

Pastor Doug: Are you asking a question?

Joseph: I want to offer you this other- [crosstalk]

Pastor Doug: Well tell what -- because you're getting ready to offer something to me and you haven't heard what I believe. Give me a second to explain what this verse says and then I'll let you make a statement, okay?

Joseph: Okay.

Pastor Doug: All right, that sound fair? Because our listener don't know what verse we're talking about right now. For friends, in Matthew 24:29, Jesus is talking about signs of the second coming. He says immediately after the tribulation of those days, the sun'll be darkened, the moon will not give its light, the stars will fall from Heaven, the powers of Heaven will be shaken, then sign of Son of Man will appear in Heaven and all tribes of the Earth will mourn and they'll see the Son of Man coming in the clouds of Heaven with power and great glory. I think what Joseph is referring to is there are a couple of views regarding this prophecy.

First of all, there is, what you call, the historic fulfillment. When you can look over the panorama of history, there was a great tribulation of the Dark Ages. There was a great earthquake that happened in Europe, what they call the Lisbon earthquake, was one of the greatest earthquake at the time. There was a day called the Dark Day and another day when the stars fell. These are all in the encyclopedia.

On top of the historic fulfillment, there's also a literal fulfillment. These things, Joseph, are going to happen literally in quick succession before the second coming. There will be a great time of trouble just before Jesus comes. The sun will be darkened, the moon will not give its light, the stars will fall, the Heavens will roll together and Jesus will come.

A lot of prophecies Christ gives have, what you call, a dual application. When he's answering questions in Matthew 24, they're asking him, at the beginning of Matthew 24 the disciples say, "When will this be, the destruction of Jerusalem? What would be the signs of your coming and the end of the world?" In some places, you'd say it's a try fulfillment, because he's telling the destruction of Jerusalem then he gives a panorama historically of the signs of the second coming. Then he talks about thing that'll happen in quick succession at the end of the world.

So now, go ahead. I cut you off, because I figured people listening weren't -- what we're talking about.

Joseph: I want to give you a alternative explanation in which one thing causes all those signs as -- just take your in contrast to the other explanation where all those things have separate clauses. My view is that -- one, the thing that causes the sun to turn black and the moon to turn red would be the same thing that causes the stars to fall. The stars would be manmade stars, nuclear war heads. They become fire balls and, at that time, there is a thing called wave interference where the top of one light wave runs into the crest of another light wave and they cancel each other out and there's a moment of darkness. That would take care of the sun blackening and the stars falling.

The next thing would be the sky rolling up like a scroll. That's from Revelation 6 of course, but the irony is it wouldn't be the sky rolling up, it would be the mushroom clouds in the sky, the horizontal ring-

Pastor Doug: So you think that -- We can't go too long, Joseph. You think that this is going to be in connection with a nuclear event?

Joseph: [inaudible 00:11:15] the pass about the sky departing like a scroll being rolled up. Finally, number four is the moon reddening. That would be the last thing to happens. It would take a few hours and days for all the sooth from our cities, where there cities used to be -- all that shit would rise into the sky and [inaudible 00:11:38] later filter and then block out all the --

Pastor Doug: Yes. That even happens right now, Joseph. When there is a forest fire. The sun goes dark, the moon turns to blood. Whenever there were times of war, very often would burn fields and burn cities and the sky would go dark, the moon looked like blood. You can find that same phrase in the book of Joel. There may be a nuclear event at the end of time, but I don't believe that's what's going to cause these things to happen in quick succession. But we do appreciate your calling and sharing these thoughts.

Pastor Jean: We do have a study guide talking about events associated with the second coming of Jesus. It's called The Ultimate Deliverance and, Joseph, I think you'll enjoy studying this. For anyone wanting to learn more about events associated with how Jesus will come and when he will come and that kind of thing, give us a call on our resource phone number. The number is 800-835-6747. Ask for the study guide called The Ultimate Deliverance. Again, that number is 800-835-6747. Our next caller is Megan listening from South Dakota. Megan, welcome to the program.

Pastor Doug: Hi, Megan, you there?

Megan: Yes, I am. Hi, Pastor Doug.

Pastor Doug: Hi, thanks for calling and your question?

Megan: My question is, we've been doing Bible studies with some people and we just were doing one on has God created the devil or not. We came across a Bible verse from first John 3:8 where it talks about the devils sin. And brought up, we were wondering, the beginning of what?

Pastor Doug: Let me read this for everybody and this is first John 3:8. It says, "He who sins is of the devil, for the devil has sinned from the beginning. For this purpose, the son of God was manifest, so that he might destroy the works of the devil." The devil sinned from the beginning of the time he became the devil. Before he was sinful, he was known as Lucifer. He was a beautiful unfallen angel. When it says from the beginning, it's specifically taking about the beginning of our world.

John, in his other letters often talks about the beginning. All the way back at the beginning with Adam and Eve, the devil sinned and he inspired or incited man to sin. This is what I think he's talking about. But I'm not sure, am I answering what you're asking?

Megan: I think you did, yes. That makes more sense. I wasn't sure how to explain that, but yes, if John uses beginning frequently -- the beginning of our world -- that makes a lot of sense then.

Pastor Doug: Yes, he does in -- even in Revelation, he talks about the lamb slain from the foundation of the world and John wrote Revelation as well. He often focuses about -- From the very beginning, God activated a plan to save man and the devil was right there in the Garden at the beginning. That was after his fall. I think John also talks about him being a murderer. Meaning he inspired Cain to kill his brother Abel. That's again at the beginning. There's no record of angels murdering each other before man was made.

Appreciate your question, Megan. Thank you for calling.

Megan: Thank you.

Pastor Doug: Of course, you've got the lessons sounds like.

Megan: Yes [unintelligible 00:15:04].

Pastor Jean: We're up for anyone else. For anyone else wanting to learn more about that we have a lesson called Did God Create a Devil? and we'll be happy to send that to anyone who calls and asks. Again, the number is 800-835-6747. You can ask for the study guide called Did God Create a Devil?. If you have a Bible question, the phone line here to the studio is 800-463-7297 with your Bible question. That's 800-463-7297.

Our next caller is Steven listening in New York. Steven, you're on the air.

Steven: Hello, Pastor Doug.

Pastor Doug: Evening. How can we help you tonight?

Steven: Pleasure talking to you. My question to you what is specifically meant in this phrase from the Bible, "The first shall be last and the last shall be first?"

Pastor Doug: Jesus is talking about that in the world, and, actually, that applies to -- and by the way, you find that in Matthew 19:30, you find it in Mark 10:31, "Many who are first will be last and the last will be first." There's going to be a great reversal of values when we get to the judgment day. People in this world, they think that the rich are the ones who are blessed and successful. Jesus said, "No, the poor in spirit will inherit the kingdom." People make a big deal about pride in this world, but, in God's eyes, humility is what matters. In this world, it's how much you get. In God's economy, it's how much you give. In so many ways it's different.

Jesus was speaking to the Jewish nation and many of the leaders thought, "We are the chosen people, we are Abraham's seed. We have a right, we've inherited this, we have the word of God. We are the chosen people." And Jesus was saying, "You know the gospel's going to go to the Gentiles, the people that you call dogs. So, you'll be surprised that the last or the lowest in your opinion will be the highest and some of the highest in your opinion will be the lowest."

Steven: Sounds good.

Pastor Doug: Yes. Basically, that's a statement that covers a whole kaleidoscope of principles, comparing Jesus' teachings with the way the devil and the world value things.

Steven: Yes. What? Thanks for answering my question, Pastor Doug.

Pastor Doug: Absolutely, thank you. It's a great question.

Pastor Jean: If you have a Bible question, the phone line here to the studio is 800-463-7297. That's 800-463-7297. We have James who's listening on the road in South Carolina. James, welcome to the program.

James: Thank you so much. Thank you for taking my call. My question is in regards someone who -- I was listening to a program prior to yours on XM and I called in. The pastor had given a biblical definition of an adulterous marriage. Someone who marries someone unlawfully according to scripture. His remedy, I wanted your take, was that those people should divorce. My question to him was, "If those people came to a saving knowledge of Jesus Christ after their marriage and discovered that they had actually entered into an adulterous marriage by one of the other not lawfully being divorced, what was the remedy?" He was alluding to the fact that they should divorce.

What is your take on that? Whether the person entered the marriage knowingly or unknowingly into now what was defined as an adulterous marriage?

Pastor Doug: It's sort of like the wheat and the tares parable. Once you sow the weeds among the tares, if you try to pluck them up and separate them, you make things worse. That's what the -- in the parable it teaches you just got to let it go. When king David entered into an adulterous marriage with Bathsheba, they were punished for their sin. They were both ostensibly believers in God and they sinned and they suffered for their sin. It talks about how when Nathan confronted David, he said, "You have taken the wife of Uriah."

At that point, David was married to Bathsheba, Uriah was dead. Nathan didn't say, God did not tell Nathan to say, "You need to divorce Bathsheba." Even after their first baby died, you would've thought, "They have no children now, they should divorce." But you know what the Bible says? God says he forgave David. David knew his wife, they had another son together who was Solomon who ended up becoming king and an ancestor of Jesus.

You can't unscramble scrambled eggs. If people enter into a marriage, and especially if there's children involved, the idea then that they're supposed to now divorce because they didn’t have biblical grounds for marriage -- In some cases, you have people that discover or become convicted about their marriage 20 years after they entered into a divorce or an adulterous relationship.

I'd say once you're married, you're married, because you made another covenant. Usually marriage is associated with a series of vows before God. And so how are you going to make things right by breaking your second vows? You see what I'm saying?

James: I agree with you a 100%. I'm so thankful for your program. I strongly believe the previous teacher was in grave error. I know that others like myself may have been listening to the show and I would have wanted another perspective. Because he was quoting what's in Mark when Herod was confronted by John the Baptist and said, "It's not lawful for you to have her." He asked me what did I think that John expected her to do. My answer was, "I think he expected John to respond to the law, but the teacher gave no provision for the new covenant and the grace that we are under whereby Paul said if we confessed our sins-

Pastor Doug: Yes, exactly. We confess our sins–

James: I know he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins.

Pastor Doug: Yes, exactly right. Something I'm going to have to look up is just to find out if -- I don’t even know if it says that Herodias was Herod’s wife. It says he had his brother's wife. It's almost like she just moved in. So, I'm not sure. She had a stepdaughter -- I'm not sure. It may say that they were married. I'm going to have to look that up. Either way, when people -- [laughs] when they're married like that -- I can't find -- The only places where God tells someone to put away his wife is in situations of polygamy.

He told Abraham to put away Hagar because you're not supposed to have more than one wife at a time. So that would be a case for that. Anyway, I appreciate your good question James. That’s important. Thank you very much. By the way, we do have a book that anyone listening now through -- I think you understand these things James, but we have a book called Marriage, Divorce and Remarriage that specifically addresses what the Bible says about this.

We know, we’re not guessing, we know there's listeners out there now that are struggling with these issues and wondering what does the Bible say about marriage, divorce and remarriage. Call Amazing Facts, we will send you this book. We just do it by faith and believing people will support the ministry and it will give you a lot of good Bible answers.

Pastor Jean: The number to call is 800-835-6747 and, again, the book's called Marriage, Divorce and Remarriage. 800-835-6747. And if you have a Bible question, the phone line here to the studio is 800-463-7297. We've got Nancy listening in South Carolina. Nancy, welcome to the program.

Nancy: Hello, Pastor Ross, so happy to talk to you. My question is, we’re not to talebear or gossip, but is it the same if you relate to your husband, you're supposed to be one, and talk about community gossip to him?

Pastor Doug: First of all, you should be able to confide in your spouse, but it’s one thing to talk about genuine concerns. But if through the course of the day, a husband or wife becomes privy to gossip, that a person is not going to be edified by repeating or someone else hearing, you're not under obligation to God to just kind of repeat all the gossip that you’ve heard. I know, I tried to confer with my wife and tell her things that I think are relevant, that we can pray about or that may be genuine concern.

I hear all kinds of things as a Pastor. Especially people if you're counseling, people counsel with a pastor in confidence and you hear a lot of things and you pray for them and you just leave it between you and God and that person. And so those things should be kept in confidence. What do you think Pastor Ross?

Pastor Jean: Yes, absolutely. I think it that case, Pastor, that if you're sharing with somebody or somebody's sharing with you and -- it’s in confidence. Especially if you're providing some counsel to them. Some of those things you probably don’t want to share with your spouse, because you don’t want to affect their relationships, especially if it’s a church member. You don’t want them to look at that person differently or maybe there's things that they’ve done that they don’t want people to know about. I think it’s correct to, if it’s spoken in confidence, to be quite about it. It’s different than just sharing general things with your spouse.

Nancy: Internal things.

Pastor Jean: I think we should be free to share those things.

Pastor Doug: Yes. If we hear that a person out there has had a tragedy in the family and they need prayer, you share that. You pray together and those will be the things. But if you hear scandalous, "Why, there's just a whole lot of gossip on Facebook these days." You could get consumed listening to all of that. But-

Nancy: Yes.

Pastor Doug: [laughs] [unintelligible 00:25:32] spend a lot of time. But anyway, I think you get the point and so–

Nancy: I know.

Pastor Doug: Does that make sense Nancy?

Nancy: Yes, [inaudible 00:25:39] and I appreciate your advice.

Pastor Doug: All right, thank you very much. Thanks for your question.

Pastor Jean: Our next caller is Gary listening in Dallas, Texas. Gary, welcome to the program.

Gary: Hi, good evening.

Pastor Doug: Evening.

Gary: Yes, so I had a question about Old Testament. There's two passages that are [unintelligible 00:25:58]. I think there might be a couple more, but they kind of parallel. Joshua 24:19. The second part of the verse, Joshua is saying -- he's talking about God. He says, "He will not forgive your transgressions nor your sins." Then also in Exodus 23:21, he says, "Don’t provoke him for he will not pardon your transgressions."

Pastor Doug: I know and everything else in the Bible seems to say God does forgive and pardon. In fact, that’s the main message of the scriptures. So you're wondering, is this -- this sounds like a contradiction?

Gary: Right, some inconsistencies. I'm just wondering for some clarity.

Pastor Doug: First of all, with both Moses who's in Exodus and Joshua who's in the book of Joshua, they both understood the whole sacrificial system was built around seeking forgiveness from God for sin. So they knew that God was a merciful God and when God revealed himself -- Pastor Ross, I forget the verse where Moses says, "Show me your glory." And the Lord revealed his glory and there's a statement that Moses makes about God. Long-suffering, merciful, forgiving transgression, iniquity and sin. That, matter of fact, that might be the one you're quoting there in Exodus right now.

I think that Joshua -- let me look at that verse in 19. It says, "Joshua said to the people, you cannot serve the Lord for he is a Holy God, he is a jealous God. He'll not forgive your transgressions nor your sins if you forsake the Lord and serve foreign Gods." So he's saying, he won't forgive, if they forsake the Lord. Of course, he does forgive when we repent of our sins. You can count on it then. So many other things in the Bible are pretty clear that God is a merciful, long-suffering and forgiving God. What was that verse?

Pastor Jean: It’s in Exodus chapter 33 beginning verse 22.

Pastor Doug: Yes, says the same thing there. If you repent, he’ll forgive. We’ll be right back, friends.

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Every Bible question you have answered moves you one step closer to the fullness of God's will for your life. So what are you waiting for? Get the answers you need for a fuller, richer, more confident life. You're listening to Bible Answers Live. We still have a few phone lines open. If you have a Bible related question, call us at 1-800-GOD-SAYS. That's 1-800-463-7297. Now let's join Pastors Doug Bachelor and John Ross for more Bible answers live.

Pastor Doug: We're back listening to friends. You'll know the truth and the truth will set you free. If you want to be a little more free, call in for your Bible questions. Who do we going to go talk to next Pastor Ross?

Pastor John: Yes. We've got Ethan listening from Utah. Ethan welcome to the program.

Ethan: Hi.

Pastor Doug: Evening. Thanks for calling.

Ethan: How are you doing?

Pastor Jean: Better than we deserve. How are you doing?

Ethan: Good evening Pastors. I've got a hard questions for you guys. It has to do with in the Book of Revelations. John witnesses the dragon making war with Michael the Archangel and cast out of heaven. It's very perspective, right prior to that, there's something that happens with these woman figure. Heavenly woman figure giving birth to the Son of God, I believe.

Pastor Jean: Man child. Yes.

Ethan: The dragon goes after the Son of God. Right after that Michael and the angels go to war with him and his cast out. I wonder, why we don't look to that scripture more as the source of understanding of why Satan was cast out of heaven?

Pastor Jean: It's interesting you would say that because we do actually talk quite a bit in amazing facts, has written quite a bit about Revelation 12. It's one of my favorite studies on the whole book. You got the whole plan of salvation wrapped up in that story. You've got the battle between the dragon and the woman, which takes you all the way back to the garden of Eden. Where God said that the seed of the woman would crush the serpents head and the serpent would bruise to heal of the seed of the woman. And seed of the woman been the church.

You find these battle between the dragon, it tells us in Revelation that serpent called that dragon and Satan. We know that serpent, that dragon is the devil and he has been at war with the woman. The woman is a symbolic term in prophecy for the church or the bride of Christ. Bible says, "Husband's love, your wife's as Christ loves the church." God has liken his church. His people, his daughter of Zion to a woman.

All through the Bible, you got that symbolism. This beautiful woman clove with the sun, moon, and stars in Revelation is the church. Jesus said to the church, you are the light of the world. God made the sun, moon, and stars natural light. You got this battle. You're the man child, she brings forth is the Christ. Of course, the dragon wants to devour that child. That's why King Herod sent his soldiers in to Bethlehem to destroy the babies when Jesus was born. That's why Pharaoh tried to kill all the babies in Egypt and Athaliah tried to kill the seed of David.

They're all trying to kill or prevent the Messiah from coming. There has been this war. Christ ascended to heaven, the dragon can't reach Christ anymore. The devil now takes his wrath out on the people, who reflect Christ, the church. He goes after the woman, she flees into the wilderness. I can go on and on. We got a whole lesson on this study.

Ethan: Yes that makes sense. What about some of the other details like on the third of the-- angels followed him, the dragon and they were cast out and no room was left for them in heaven anymore and they'll cast down to the earth that old serpent. I see a chronological event when I read that. I just wonder because it's so detailed in the chronology. I wonder if it's more literal than symbolic, that this is really what happened.

Pastor Jean: Just say a litle bit more to that, it's interesting when it talks about this two castings. There is a casting out and there is a casting down. The casting out and the casting down is not necessarily the same event. The casting out is the result of this war in heaven. Satan and his angels are expelled but there is a casting down to the earth that occurs at the cross.

Where all the universe sees the true nature of the devil and his attempt to-- well, he was successful in crucifying Christ. Inspiring people to crucify Him. He was cast down to the earth. Prior to that, you read about how that there was this meeting, with the Sons of God and Satan came from the earth. Seemed that he claimed to be the representative of earth. After the cross, Satan no longer is the representative of earth but Christ is now the representative of the earth. Right after that writs says he was cast into the earth. Then it says they overcame by the blood of the lamb by the word of testimony. There are these two events that's been highlighted there in the Revelation 12.

Pastor Doug: Yes. We actually have a lesson if you'd like Ethan. We will send you a free lesson that talks about the--

Pastor Jean: Bride of Christ. Yes.

Pastor Doug: Revelation 12 as a whole lot lesson.

Pastor Jean: The number to call is 800-835-6747. That is the study guide. You can ask for the lesson called the bride of Christ, 800-835-6747. If you have a Bible question the phone line here to the studio is, 800-463-7297. 800-463-7297. Our next call is Larry listening in North Carolina. Larry, welcome to the program.

Larry: Hello.

Pastor Doug: Hi. Evening.

Larry: I'm calling about a couple of verses on Revelation. One of them is Chapter two verse nine, the other is Chapter three verse nine. Both verses is talking about the Synagogue of Satan. People and churches, they don't seem to be been warned about these people. They're not been warned about what these people say. It's just like the Lord tells them, your prophecy about what's going to happen to this. Any thoughts on these two verses?

Pastor Doug: Well, yes. When it talks in Revelation about the Synagogue of Satan. The word synagogue means gathering or congregation of Satan. Obviously for every truth that Jesus has, the devils got a counterfeit. The devil has counterfeit Gospels and he got counterfeit church. Jesus said the day is coming. I think it's John Chapter 16, when those who kill you will think their serving God. It's like when Paul was killing Christians, he was part of that time of the Synagogue of Satan. Jesus said if you’re not with Him, you're against Him. We all know there's plenty of people that go to church that are not with Christ. There's a whole counterfeit religion.

Pastor Jean: Also during the time period that we read there in Revelation, it's prophetic. It's talking talk about events that transpired during the Christian era. There were many pagan rituals and practices that found their way into the church. People were setting aside the commandments of God and following these pagan rituals and practices. In essence they were thinking they were worshiping God but they're actually following manmade tradition. That's something that's saluted to that in their verse.

Pastor Doug: Yes. Go ahead Larry.

Larry: They were actually they weren't been warned about them. They were just told what was going to happen to them. I don't see why it would be a bad thing, would it be so bad the people to claim they were a Jew, if they're not? Why would that be so bad? I don't understand.

Pastor Doug: Well, not just Judaism, it's for person to claim being a follower of God, when they're not really a follower of God. Yes, we certainly have it. We've got some study guides that actually talk about being a genuine Christian. We have a book called Alone in the Crowd that deals with that. Well send you a free copy for that if you like Larry or anyone that's asking.

Pastor Jean: The number to call is 1-800-835-6747. You can ask for the book called Alone in the Crowd. Again that's 800-835-6747. If you have a Bible question the phone line here at the studio is 1-800-463-7297.

Our next call is Alex. Listening in Connecticut. Alex welcome to the program.

Pastor Doug: Alex are you there?

Alex: Yes. I'm here.

Pastor Doug: Your question tonight?

Alex: Yes. I would like to ask a question about tithe. If it still good for new Testament [unintelligible 00:38:53] because Paul said that Christ died on the cross so that it [inaudible 00:38:57] would not be followed anymore. How come we still pay tithe?

Pastor Doug: First of all, there are laws that we no longer follow as new Testament Christians. Circumcisions doesn't matter, sacrificing of lambs, Jesus is our lamb. Some people have taken Paul's statement to mean that we don't keep the 10 commandments anymore. Obviously it is still a sin to lie or kill or steal for Christians. I think you would agree there are laws that Christians should still keep. Is that right?

Alex: That's right.

Pastor Doug: Okay. The 10 commandments, that hasn't changed, that's eternal. God has laws for like supporting His work. Tithe was the law, not just given to the Levites. Tithe is first mention by Abraham. When Abraham won this battle, when he rescued lot, he gave tithe to Melchizedek the priest, then Jacob made a promise and he said, "Lord if you'll bring me home again a 10th of all that you give me I will give to you." He did that. He gave it to his brother Esau because his brother Esau was the priest of the land at the time. Then Jesus said-- If you go to Matthew chapter 23, I don't know if you have a pencil or a Bible handy. I can read this to you. It's easy to remember, Matthew 23:23.

Jesus said, "Woe to you Scribes, and Pharisees, hypocrites, for you pay tithe of mint and anise and cumin." Those are little herbs in the herb garden. The Pharisees were so legalistic they would count out 10 little parsley stalks and they would give one to the Lord, a tenth. They were paying tithe on their herb gardens which is pretty fastidious. Then Jesus said, "You've neglected the weightier matters of the law, justice and mercy and faith."

These you ought to have done and notice what he says, "Without leaving the other undone." In other words, keep paying your tithe but don't be paying tithe on your herb garden and forget about justice mercy and faith. The New Testament principle for giving is actually more than a tithe. If you look in Acts chapter 2--

Alex: You okay?

Pastor Doug: Yes, can you hear me?

Alex: Yes.

Pastor Doug: If you look in Acts chapter 2, it says, that no man said that ought that he had was his own but they all have everything in common and the disciples in Acts chapter 4 and Acts chapter 5. They were selling their houses and lands and bringing it to the church. They were giving a lot more than 10%. If a person doesn't believe that tithe is still a principle that should be followed, well then they should be following the New Testament principle that's going to be a lot more than tithe.

They were just liquidating everything and supporting the work back then. I would think as a basic minimum Christians should still pay tithe. We have a lesson on this and we'll send it to you for free. It's got a lot of scripture in it and it's full of promises and encouragement.

Pastor Jean: The Lesson is called In God We Trust and the number to call is 800-835-6747. You can ask for the study guide called In God We Trust. again 800-835-6747. Our next caller is John and he is listening in North Carolina. John welcome to the program. You're on the air.

Pastor Doug: John, are you with us? Might have--

John: Yes.

Pastor Doug: There we go. Probably had the mute on. How can we help you tonight?

John: [inaudible 00:42:37] My question to you pastor is about why God blame us for sin. I want to give you some illustration. Can we blame a dog for barking or a bird for flying or for fish swims in the water? We cannot blame them because that's the nature and that's how God created them. In our case, we were created with a fallen nature and that's why we sin. God blames us for that sin. He gave us that fallen nature that's why we sin.

Pastor Doug: Well, first of all-

John: Then he goes--

Pastor Doug: -in your question--

John: Then he goes I'm--

Pastor Doug: Go ahead. I'm sorry, finish. I'll let you finish.

John: Then he goes, I'm going to send you the savior. My question to you pastor, before the savior, before Jesus Christ, God created us with the fallen nature. That's why we sin. I don't think there should be any punishment for a nature that he gave us, to begin with.

Pastor Doug: Alright, I see what you're saying, I've asked the same question before, when I was a baby Christian. I thought Lord, why would you send me to hell for sinning if I'm born with this propensity to sin. Lord, you created me so you must have made me with this desire for sin. All humans sin and rebel and then you're going to throw us in the lake of fire for doing that. When I studied the Bible I found out that God actually didn't make us that way.

God created man perfectly. Man was made with a free will. Adam had no desire or natural propensity to sin. What happened is, Adam then listened to the devil who told him don't believe Gods word. Adam developed a fallen nature which he passed on to all his children. God did not create us fallen. God created everything good if you read in Genesis. Everything God made it says it was good, good, very good. God hates sin. God doesn't tempt anybody to sin.

We are, it's true-- We are born in this enslaved condition just like the children of Israel, we're born in Egypt as slaves because of a decision their ancestors made. The children of Israel didn't want to be slaves. They were born in slavery. Why would God allow that? What God did is he sent Moses to set them free. We are born with these sinful natures. Sin it ends up causing all kinds of misery in our lives. When people drink, they suffer the results of it or if they smoke or if they curse, whatever it is. It ends up causing problems.

God wants to save us from these problems that we're born with. If a baby is born with some kind of medical problem and the doctors can heal and save that baby. Well we think, well, bless the doctors. We're born because of the decision our parents made, with these sinful natures God said, "I will give you a new heart. I will save you." It's not Gods fault. God is perfect. God is good and he wants to save us. It's the fault of our ancestors that we're all suffering with this disease of sin. Did that make sense John?

John: Gave us that bad heart, to begin with. Now, you’re going to tell us--

Pastor Doug: No. See, that's it, God did not give us a bad heart. God is offering to give us a good heart. We are born with a bad heart because of a decision our parents made to trust the devil, talking about Adam and Eve, instead of trusting God.

John: We're not to blame?

Pastor Doug: Not to blame God. God is good. The Bible says-- You can't believe anything the Bible says if you don't believe that God is good. It's very clear, God is love. God is good. God does not want us to suffer. If you just look at the life of Jesus. Jesus came down and suffer like we can't even comprehend to save us from suffering and death. He doesn't want us to suffer.

John: To save us from what? From sin?

Pastor Doug: Yes.

John: God gave us that sin-- [crosstalk]

Pastor Doug: No God didn't give us the sin. That's where we disagree.

John: We were born with that sin, to begin with. [Inaudible 00:46:43] If I get a syringe full of Aids virus and then I inject that syringe in your blood stream and now you become HIV positive. Then I come and tell you, now since you are HIV positive, I love you I'm going to give you that medication so you can get better. Why would I do that, to begin with?

Pastor Doug: You're starting with the assumption that God is the one who's injected us with this disease of sin. He did not. That's what we’re telling you. You're assuming that because we're born sinful God must be responsible since he's the creator. God created Adam and Eve, perfect. Adam and Eve our parents sinned. We inherited this fallen nature from them.

Pastor Jean: This is a good question. It's something that even the disciples were asking Jesus, there was a man that was born blind and the disciples said to Jesus, well who sinned. Did this man sin or his parents that he was born blind. Jesus said, "No neither he sinned nor his parents but that the works of God might be revealed." On another occasion, Jesus said to the Scribes and Pharisees, a woman who was healed in the Synagogue, he said, "Satan has bound her." She was crippled over 18 years. Jesus came to heal her. God is there to fix the problem of sin. He's not the one that brings it on.

Pastor Doug: He hates sin.

Pastor Jean: It's human choice that brings it on.

Pastor Doug: Yes absolutely. Do us a favor John. You are asking good questions. I am sure a lot of people are keying in on what you're asking. It seems very basic. I asked the same question. We've got a study guide that talks about the origin of Sin. We'd like to send you a free copy. Why is there sin in the world? It talks about did God make a devil? Please read that. Anyone out there if you're wondering about that, we sure hope you'll read it. It just gives you scriptures on it, you can decide yourself.

Pastor Jean: The number to call is 800-835-6747 and it's called, Did God Create a Devil? Again 800-835-6747. Our next caller is Kep and he's listening in Albuquerque in New Mexico. Kep, welcome to the program.

Kep: Thank you, Pastor Doug. I've got a question on Melchizedek. This would be out of Genesis 14: 18, 19, and 20. Who was Melchizedek as far as his position in with Abraham and Jesus.

Pastor Doug: Melchizedek is a king priest that appears out of nowhere. Abraham is coming back from rescuing Lot from a battle with these five kings up by Damascus. He's got all this bounty from the war. He stops in a place called Salem, later known as Jerusalem, same place. There is this king there, he was a priest and his name was Melchizedek and he's sort of a mysterious figure. We don't know for sure. If you want to do something interesting look at the genealogies in your Bible, you'll probably find them online.

One of the patriarchs, one of the sons of Noah was actually still alive during the time of Melchizedek. Shem lived 600 years. Some have wondered, I can't prove this and I don't know for sure, but one theory is that Melchizedek was called the "King of Righteousness" is what his name means. That Shem, one of the last survivors from before the flood, when he heard that Abraham had come to the Promised Land to worshiped the true God, he left all the idolatry in Mesopotamia. He came out with his family and Abraham paid tithe to him. Abraham called him a priest of the most high God.

What priest would be higher than Abraham? He's a type of Jesus. Now Melchizedek was not Jesus, he was a real person. He's a type of Jesus and Paul says, I think it's Hebrews in the New Testament he said, "Without beginning or end of days," meaning Melchizedek there's no genealogy that tells where he came from. There's no follow up that tells where he went. He just appears and that he brings forth bread and wine. Jesus in the covenant brings bread and wine at the Last Supper so he's a type of Christ.

Pastor Jean: That's Hebrews 7:3.

Doug: I hope that helps a little bit but yes you're on the right track there Kep and that's a blessing. We're going to try and take one or two more calls before our time evaporates.

Pastor Jean: We have Virginia listening in Orlando, Florida. Virginia, welcome to the program. Virginia, are you there?

Pastor Doug: Virginia -- Orlando.

Virginia: Yes, can I ask a question please?

Pastor Doug: Yes, please.

Virginia: Yes, is it important for us to keep the Sabbath today during our time?

Pastor Doug: Yes, we have a caller a minute ago who is asking about the law and we said that there are some ceremonial laws. A New Testament Christians don't need to worry about but the 10 Commandments are not God's 10 recommendations. They existed even before Mount Sinai. It was wrong to commit adultery back in the days of Joseph, it was wrong to murder back in the days of Cain, and it was wrong to lie.

The Ten Commandments, most churches agree with all the commandments, some don't agree with the one about idolatry but it's still there. The New Testament's clear, keep yourself from idols. One of the 10 Commandments that begins with the word remember is the Sabbath. Obviously we still need that time of rest, we still need that time of worship, and of course, God wants us to continue to keep the Sabbath day.

Pastor Jean: We have a study guide called The Lost Day of History and deals with this and looks at what the Bible has to say about the Sabbath. We'll be happy to send it to anybody who gives us a call and asks. The number is 1-800-835-6747 and again you can ask for the study guide called The Lost Day of history.

Pastor Doug: Amen. Virginia, we're going to try and take one more call. I hope that helps your question.

Virginia: Yes.

Pastor Jean: Next caller is Robert, listening from Washington. Robert, welcome to the program.

Robert: Yes, I made it.

Pastor Doug: Yes and you did. Real quick, though, because we're running on short of time.

Robert: Okay, this question is regarding on Isaiah 66:23 and 24.

Pastor Doug: Okay, do you want to read that or do you want us to read it?

Robert: Okay, you can read it.

Pastor Doug: Isaiah 66 and you said 23 and 24?

Robert: Yes.

Pastor Doug: It says, "For as the new," let me see, "And it shall come to pass, that from one new moon to another, and from one Sabbath to another, shall all flesh come and worship before me, saith the Lord. And they'll go forth, and look upon the corpses of the man who have transgressed against me," and it says, "For their worm do not die and the fire is not quenched and they'll be an abhorrence to all flesh."

This is talking about that people will always know that there has been a judgment that is fallen on the wicked, it says in Malachi chapter four, "You'll go forth and tread upon the wicked for they will be ashes under the soles of your feet." We have a study guide on that and I pray that you'll send for it Robert.

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Pastor Doug: Hello, friends. We all know a marathon is one of the longest and hardest races a person can run. Did you hear about the ultra-marathon they used to have in Australia? It was 544 miles from Melbourne to Sydney. It attracted as many as 150 world-class athletes. Something happened that no one will ever forget. In 1983, a 61-year-old potato farmer named Cliff Young, decided to enter the race. The people were very amused because he had on rubber galoshes over his boots.

When the race began and all the runners took off, sure enough, old Cliff is left behind shuffling along very slowly. He was shuffling very persistently. Normally, during the seven-day race, the runners would go about 18 hours of running and then they'd sleep for six hours but nobody ever told Cliff that. When the other runners stopped to rest during the night, Cliff just kept on running. Some people were afraid old Cliff was going to have a heart attack.

They were asking the race organizers to show mercy and stopped the crazy old man but he would have none of it. Each day, he was gaining on the pack because when they were sleeping, he was plodding along. During the last night of the race, Cliff passed all of these world-class athletes. Not only was Cliff able to run that 544-mile race without dying, he won beating all the other racers by nine hours breaking the record and become a national hero in the process.

It's really amazing as when they told him that he had won the $10,000 prize. He looked confused and said, he didn't know there was a prize and he decided to share with the other runners. When asked, "How he was able to run all night long?" Cliff responded that he grew up on a farm where they had about 2,000-head of cattle and because he couldn't afford horses, he used to have to round them up on foot, sometimes running two and three days non-stop.

Throughout the race, he just imagined he was chasing after the cows and trying to outrun the storm. Old Cliff's secret was to keep on running while others were sleeping. The Bible tells us that the race is not necessarily to the swift. Something like Aesop's parable of The Tortoise and The Hare, the tortoise just kept on plodding along. That's why Jesus tells us in Matthew 24:13, "He that endures unto the end, the same shall be saved." Now, you might slip and fall during the race, you might even get off to a bad start, but in the Christian race that we run, the main thing is you want to finish well. Keep on running friends and don't give up.

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