Colonies of Ants

Colonies of Ants

Date: 12/16/2007 
The largest known cooperative organism living on earth is a single super colony of ants that stretches more than 3,700 miles. Scientists say the vast colony of Argentine ants extends from the Northwest of Italy, tracing around the Mediterranean coast of France and rounding Spain up to Portugal, a distance wider than the entire United States.

The Life of Victory by Meade MacGuire

The Life of Victory by Meade MacGuire
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Hello friends, this is Doug Batchelor, how about an amazing fact? The largest known cooperative organism living on earth is a single super colony of ants that stretches more than 3,700 miles. Scientists say the vast colony of Argentine ants extends from the Northwest of Italy, tracing around the Mediterranean coast of France and rounding Spain up to Portugal, a distance wider than the entire United States. Argentine ants were first introduced to Italy about 90 years ago. It’s believed they hitched a ride across the ocean on a freighter carrying South American fruit. After landing, they quickly became established in the idea of habitat. With plentiful food and few natural enemies, they spread like a plague.

A team of researchers captured about 5,000 ants from 33 separate nests in Italy, France, Spain and Portugal and transported the insects back to a laboratory. Once in the lab the scientists arranged ant fights, pitting ants one against another from among the 33 different nests. See, Argentine ants will normally be friendly and cooperate with ants from their own colony, but they’ll fiercely fight with other types of ants who are members of other colonies. Over the span of a year, the scientists arranged more than 1,000 ant fights. What they discovered was that ants from 30 of the nests were closely related to the other ants that were from this vast colony.

It’s estimated that this single, enormous colony of ants contains at least ten times as many ants as the number of stars in the Milky Way. Did you know in the Bible God promised that His people would someday grow beyond the number of the stars? Stay with us friends. We’re going to learn more as Amazing Facts brings you this edition of Bible Answers Live.

[PROGRAM INTRODUCTION]

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Here we are friends, another fresh installment of Bible Answers Live. For anybody who may be tuning in for the first time either by plan or by providence, this is a live, international, interactive radio program where you can call in your Bible questions and we’ll do our best to find answers from the word of God together. My name is Doug Batchelor.

Pastor Jëan Ross: My name is Jëan Ross. Good evening listening friends and welcome again as Pastor Doug had mentioned to this edition of Bible Answers Live. Pastor Doug, before we go to the phone lines and start talking about the different questions that come in, let’s start with prayer. Dear Father, once more we thank You for this opportunity today where we can open up Your Word. We ask a blessing upon this program and be with those who are listening wherever they might be, and may Your Spirit lead and guide in each of our hearts and our minds as we seek to find truth from Your Word. For this we ask in Jesus’ name, amen.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Amen.

Pastor Jëan Ross: The amazing fact that opened the program, Pastor Doug, this huge colony of ants, it’s almost mind-boggling to think about it. The point that really stood out to me is that there were more ants in this colony than all of the stars in the Milky Way Galaxy.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Right. Now I’ve heard estimates--and I’m just winging it now--but I thought once I read that the Milky Way Galaxy could have as many as two hundred billion stars. Sometimes I get my B's and my N's mixed up but what difference does it make? I’m sure there’s more than two hundred million of those ants. There's probably more than two hundred billion. And you think about, that stretching over 3,700 miles of one ant colony. When I read this, my mind was taken back to that prophecy in Genesis 15, first book in the Bible, God speaking to Abraham. He brought him forth out of his tent and he looked up at the sky and He [God] said, “Look towards heaven and tell or count the stars if you’re able to,” and He said, “So shall your seed be.” In other words, “Your descendants will be more numerous than the stars.”

Now, Abraham was not just looking at the stars in the Milky Way Galaxy. He was looking at all the stars above which would include many other galaxies. God said that his seed would be like the stars of heaven. And obviously that’s a symbol; but it is true that God’s people are going to exceed the number of the stars or be countless as the stars in the final day.

Pastor Jëan Ross: Well, does this mean, then, that Abraham’s seed, or the Jews, are the ones that this prophecy is concerning, or could it be more than literal Jews?

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Well it would certainly include the Jews because from the time of Abraham to the time of Christ, God’s people were, largely, the Jewish people, or at least they had the Scriptures. I know God had His children in other places at that time. But in a special sense from the time of Christ, anybody, Jew or Gentile, who accepts Christ, Paul says, “He that accepts Christ, he is Abraham’s seed.” So it’s not any longer circumcision of the flesh, it’s circumcision of the heart. Over the span of history God has had His people all over the planet that, in the great gathering when Christ comes, we’re going to see that the redeemed are greater in number than the stars.

Now we might have a lot of friends out there that are wondering about this. Matter of fact, there’s a prophecy in Revelation 12 of a woman standing on the moon clothed with the light of the sun and twelve stars above her head. She is a symbol for God’s church. A lot of people wonder, "Does it matter what church you go to? Couldn’t you just go to any churchbecause you like the architecture or it’s close to your house? Does it matter what they believe? How important is that?" We’ve got a lesson on Bible criteria to identify God’s people.

Pastor Jëan Ross: The lesson is entitled, “The Bride of Christ.” The church is symbolized in Scripture as the Bride and Jesus as the Bridegroom. To receive this free study guide, all you’ll need to do is call our resource number, 1-800-835-6747, and ask for the study guide “The Bride of Christ” and we’ll be happy to send that to you. We have two questions that has come via the email. The first one today is a good question. It comes from 1st Samuel Chapter 16 and verse 14, and the question is, “What is the distressing spirit which the Lord sent to Saul?”

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Well, if you read there in 1st Samuel 16:14 it says, “But the spirit of the LORD departed from Saul, and an evil spirit from the LORD troubled him.” And people often read that and they think, “Why would the Lord, the good, holy God send an evil spirit anywhere?” Well, the key is reading the first part of that verse. Whenever God’s light is withdrawn it’s always replaced by darkness. It says God took His Spirit from Saul. Saul grieved away the Holy Spirit. If Iwant to introduce darkness into this room, I just turn off the lights. The withdrawal of the light leaves darkness.

So when God withdrew His Spirit from Saul, the evil spirits automatically flowed in. Some might say, "Well, the Lord sent them because He created the vacuum." And in the Jewish mind they understood God as sovereign; but really Saul is the one who, grieving away the Spirit, invited the evil spirit into his life and this spirit brought depression and troubled him. The playing of David skillfully on the harp often helped to alleviate that spirit, drive it away temporarily.

Pastor Jëan Ross: Okay. Our next question, “When do you receive the Holy Spirit? Is it before, during or after baptism?

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Well, it could be either of the three; and before I dive into this answer I should probably tell our friends who emailed both of these questions, we have a booklet on the gift of the Holy Spirit. We’ll send them a free copy if they’d like that. But back to the question, when do you get baptism of the Holy Spirit? Is it before you’re baptized with water, during or after? Well you find all three examples in the Bible. When Jesus was baptized, at His baptism, the Holy Spirit came down like a dove. In Acts chapter 2 Peter says, “Repent and be baptized, and you shall receive the gift of the Holy Spirit."

You can find in Acts 19 where these 12 Ephesian believers were re-baptized by Paul and at the point of baptism, they received the Spirit. Well, some received the Holy Spirit before they were baptized in water. Acts chapter 10, Cornelius and his family, they were filled with the Holy Spirit; and then Peter says, “Wait, you haven’t even been baptized yet.” So then they were baptized afterward. And then, of course, the apostles and many, they were baptized by John the Baptist but they did not receive the filling of the Holy Spirit until Pentecost. So the Holy Spirit comes in different degrees in a person’s life.

I believe it’s the Holy Spirit that comes into a person’s life that inspires them to surrender and be baptized. Even in Acts chapter 2 the Holy Spirit came in mighty filling, empowered them to preach, but the tide must have gone out a little bit because it came again in Acts chapter 4. So the Holy Spirit sort of works a little bit, like, it comes in cycles in our lives as the need is present.

Pastor Jëan Ross: Alright, excellent. The book you offered, Pastor Doug, “Baptism of the Holy Spirit.”

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Just the “Holy Spirit.”

Pastor Jëan Ross: “The Holy Spirit?”

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Right.

Pastor Jëan Ross: And to receive that you can call the resource number. It’s 1-800-835-6747 or you can read it at the Amazing Facts' website, www.AmazingFacts.org. Our first caller for this evening, Joanna is listening on WMCA from Brooklyn, New York. Joanna, welcome to the program.

Joanna: Hi, how are you doing guys?

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Very well. How can we help you tonight, Joanna?

Joanna: My question is, as a Christian can we listen to--not to listen--yeah, listen to entertainment, like going to movies, listening to certain films--not cinema--like opera, that kind of stuff? Is it good for a Christian to go to those stuff or listen to those stuff?

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Well, the criteria is found in Philippians where Paul says, “Whatsoever things are pure, think on these things, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are good.” And so we should apply that test to whatever we take into our minds. I think that there are varying degrees of evil; and obviously, if somebody who is ostensibly a Christian, they’re going to watch movies that are filled with using God’s name in vain, and violence, and sex and profanity. That’s not in keeping with Christian principles and that should stand to reason.

Pastor Jëan Ross: You know, I’m looking at this verse in 1st John chapter 2, verse 15 where John writes, “Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If anyone love the world, the love of the Father is not in him.” Then he explains in verse 16, “For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world.” When you think about what’s being shown in movie theaters, at least for the majority of the time, it’s things dealing with the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes and the pride of life. So is that something that a Christian should spend money or time doing? I think there are better things that we can spend our time and money on.

Joanna: But actually my church--okay, my church, we're having a debate about it. Some people said that there’s a movie, educational, that we could watch, like going to the movies to see The Passion of Christ instead of always going to the movie theater; or are you saying that we’re not supposed to be in the movie theater at all?

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Let’s talk about that for a second, okay? Well, let me give you one more verse, Psalm 119, verse 37, “Turn away mine eyes from beholding vanity.” Now, what if there is a good movie, and there are occasionally good DVDs or nature movies or something that maybe historical or have value. Is it okay, then, to go to the theater to watch it? Alright, let me ask a question. Do you like orange juice Joanna?

Joanna: Yes.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Okay, do you buy your orange juice at a bar or do you buy it at the supermarket?

Joanna: Supermarket.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Okay, that’s right. The reason you don’t buy it at the bar is--I’m assuming you’re Christian--that’s not the best place for a Christian to get their orange juice for a couple of reasons. One is, you’re going to pay too much for it. Another is, it’s not a good environment because most of what they serve there is not orange juice. And another is, it’s not a good witness if people see you going in and out of a bar. They may not know you’re getting orange juice. They might think you’re getting whiskey. So for those reasons I don’t go to movies; I don’t go to the theater.

There may be an occasional good production, and in that case, we’ll just get the video and bring it home. It costs a lot less for one thing and the environment is not bad, and it doesn’t hurt your witness. See what I’m saying? So I think there are good reasons for Christians to avoid the traditional movie theater that are both for your witness and for the economy of it all. The average movie that comes out of Hollywood Christians probably shouldn’t be looking at.

Joanna: Okay, thank you very much.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: And I’d apply the same test to television. Obviously, there are subscriber stations that are just very inappropriate, but that doesn’t mean it’s wrong to watch the History Channel or the news or something. So you just have to use discretion.

Joanna: Okay.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Okay?

Joanna: Thank you very much.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Thank you, appreciate your question.

Pastor Jëan Ross: Robert is listening on the internet from Frankfurt, Indiana. Robert, welcome to the program.

Robert: Thank you. Good evening, gentlemen.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Good evening.

Robert: It’s quite a privilege. My question has to do with this theme I’ve heard you state before, or principle, of the book of Daniel and Revelation. The book of Daniel and Revelation demonstrate--a theme is stated, and then is restated in greater detail later in the book. In 13:3 and 13:9 of Revelation, it states that, “This wound is to a head and is led into captivity.” And from a study from you, that this represents the loss of power to a religious entity. Is this again restated in 17:8, that this beast that you saw "was before and then is not," that’s my question. Is it being restated in greater detail in 17:8 on?

Pastor Doug Batchelor: “The beast that thou sawest was, and is not; and shall ascend out of the bottomless pit, and go into perdition: and they that dwell upon the earth shall wonder, whose names are not written in the book of life.” Well, there’s a lot of similarities between Revelation 17:8. For one thing, whenever it says, “They on the earth shall wonder,” you read in Revelation chapter 13, “All the earth shall wonder after the beast.” And so I think it’s a reference to the same beast...

Robert: Yes sir.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: …that you read about in Revelation 13.

Robert: Is this point in time of loss of power in 1798?

Pastor Doug Batchelor: I believe it is.

Robert: Okay, I agree.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Have you seen our study guide? It sounds like you watch our programs so you’ve seen our study guide on “The Mark of the Beast” and “Who is the Antichrist?” I think the lesson in particular, “Who is the Antichrist,” talks about this. But yeah, most of the Protestant Reformers were in pretty close agreement on who that beast was.

Robert: Yes, they were.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: They didn’t all live to see the dates fulfilled but…

Robert: What’s so troubling is Protestants have now lost that light, many of them.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Yeah, yup. Any of our friends who want to know what we’re talking about, we’ve got that lesson called, “Who is the Antichrist” and we’ll send it to you. If you want to study it, you can read it at the Amazing Facts' website. No, wait a second. I think that’s one of our advanced lessons. We don’t post that because that's so heavy they’ve got to order it, yeah.

Pastor Jëan Ross: Yeah. Well, it’s worth ordering. It’s something you want to have on hand that you can refer to. It’s called, “Who is the Antichrist?” It’s a study guide. All you need to do to receive that is call our resource number. Again it’s 1-800-835-6747. If you’d like to get your question this evening on the air with Pastor Doug the number to call is 1-800-GOD-SAYS, that’s 1-800-463-7297. There are a few lines that are still open. We’re going to go to our next caller. Wilbert is listening on KJIT from Bismarck, North Dakota. Wilbert, welcome to the program.

Wilbert: Thank you. I’ve been told that demons and fallen angels are separate entities or spirits, and that demons are lesser spirit than the fallen angels, and that demons are created by fallen angels.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: You know, my question on that, Wilbert, would be what Scripture was put forward for that? I’ve never heard any Scripture that would support that and so I’m just wondering if whoever was sharing that, if you were able to jot down, or even some reference?

Wilbert: I see.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Because in the Bible fallen angels are demons, they’re one and the same. In the Bible, for instance, if you go to Revelation chapter 12, the devil is referred to by about four different names there. He’s called the devil, the serpent, Satan, the adversary, so it’s the one individual. Demons are called demons. They are fallen angels. They are those stars that were taken to the earth with Lucifer when he was cast out. But there’s nowhere that says that they’re different, that I know of.

Wilbert: Okay. Another argument is the man in the Gadarenes with the legion of…

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Yeah, the demoniac, yes.

Wilbert: ...demoniac, legion of the demons…

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Yes.

Wilbert: …how can 3,000 fallen angels be in one man?

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Well first of all, they're not physically filling him. Keep in mind that the Bible says that, “We don’t wrestle against," this is Ephesians chapter 6. “We don’t wrestle against flesh and blood.” So when it says that there was a legion of demons--I think a Roman legion was in the neighborhood of 2,000--that could mean influencing him. It doesn’t mean they dive inside of him and all dwell in different corners of his anatomy.

Wilbert: I see, okay.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Yeah, because when evil angels possess a person, it doesn’t mean that they’ve necessarily jumped into their toe or their thumb or some part of their body. They begin to manipulate their minds through, probably from the outside in. See, even when a Christian is tempted, the devil can tempt any of us, matter of fact, we all get tempted every day. It doesn’t mean we’re possessed. He somehow is uttering, or through his fallen angels, his temptations. But it doesn’t mean he’s moved into our bodies.

Wilbert: The devil can’t create any kind of a spirit or demon or…

Pastor Doug Batchelor: The devil does not have creative power to create life. Whatever demons or fallen angels the devil has are the ones that he enticed to follow him in his rebellion when he was cast out of heaven, and you’ll also read about that in Revelation chapter 12 and Isaiah chapter 12.

Wilbert: Okay.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Or is that Isaiah 14

Wilbert: Isaiah 14, okay.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Yeah, Isaiah 14.

Wilbert: Okay, thank you Doug.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Alright, thank you very much Wilbert.

Pastor Jëan Ross: You know we have a study guide on that. It’s called, “Did God Create the Devil?”

Pastor Doug Batchelor: That’s right.

Pastor Jëan Ross: Deals with the subject of…

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Yeah, Wilbert, please ask for that.

Pastor Jëan Ross: …evil angels and so on. So to receive that call the resource number, 1-800-835-6747 and again, our phone number here to the studio is 1-800-GOD-SAYS, 1-800-463-7297. Greg is listening on the internet from Pennsylvania. Greg, welcome to the program.

Greg: Hello.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Hey, thanks for calling.

Greg: My question is Isaiah 47, verses 1 through 5. Is that talking about spiritual Babylon in the last days or the woman in Revelation 17?

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Isaiah’s prophecies about Babylon, many of them are seen as dual prophecies. What was happening, Isaiah lived during the time of Hezekiah and Manasseh, and Babylon was getting ready to come. Matter of fact, Isaiah is the one who told Hezekiah that Babylon would come and carry away his descendants and carry away all the treasure. So when Isaiah talks about Babylon coming and conquering God’s people and oppressing God’s people, first he’s speaking about the literal conquering of Babylon of Israel. But there is a spiritual second application about what spiritual Babylon would do to God’s people in the latter days.

So I think this is one of the examples in the Bible where prophecy had the literal, immediate, first-hand application; and then over the course of history there is also a spiritual Babylon that has oppressed and persecuted God’s people. And you find that, of course, referred to in Revelation 17. Even Peter, when Peter wrote and he said he’s writing from Babylon, Peter was not in ancient Babylon, he was in Rome. One of the words that they used for Rome back then was Babylon because even the Jews understood it was like the spiritual Babylon.

Greg: Right. And in verse 3 it says, “Thy nakedness shall be uncovered.” And it sounds like in Revelation 17 where God will expose...

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Exactly.

Greg: Alright.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: You’re on the right track.

Greg: Okay.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Matter of fact, we’ve got a booklet that I’ll tell you about. We don’toften offer this but it’s called, “The Beast, the Dragon and The Woman,” just a classic written by Joe Crews. I double-checked and we still have some of those left. If you’d like a copy, it talks especially about Babylon and Revelation 17.

Greg: Okay, thank you.

Pastor Jëan Ross: All you need to do, Greg, or anyone listening who’d like that, “The Dragon, the Beast and the False Prophet,” just call the…

Pastor Doug Batchelor: “The Beast, the Dragon and the Woman”

Pastor Jëan Ross: “The Beast, the Dragon and the Woman.” Call the resource number 1-800-835-6747, and we’ll be happy to send that out to you. Our next caller is Casey and he’s on his cell phone from Tennessee. Welcome to the program.

Casey: Hey guys, how are you this evening?

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Good. How can we help you tonight Casey?

Casey: I just tuned in and I was just listening. I’ve got kind of a philosophy-type question I've always kind of thought. In reading, especially the New Testament and the four Gospels, what is you guys’ feelings on the casting out of demons, because you have so many different methods used today when Jesus would simply speak a word?

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Well, that’s right. Now, there is the example in the Bible--well first let me back up and just give agreement to what you said. I’m not sure what happened with line two but I think Casey just dropped off. Casey, if you call back we’ll try and make it a priority, but I did get your question. When Jesus would cast out a devil, He would just say, “Get behind Me” or “Come out of him.” Sometimes there would be some turmoil. The person might writhe and struggle, and then come out. But there was one time when this father brought his demon-possessed son to Jesus, and this is in Mark chapter 9, and he said, "Sometimes the devil tries to throw him in the water, sometimes in the fire and the disciples could not cast out the devil."

And Jesus later told him, “This kind does not come out except by prayer and fasting.” That tells us that the casting out of devils can happen instantaneously through prayer and speaking the name of Christ through the authority of Christ, and it could take days or weeks as you pray and fast because fasting isn’t something that happens in sixty seconds.

Pastor Jëan Ross: You know another thing Pastor Doug, we do have power, those who believe in Christ, Jesus had promised to give them power over these evil spirits, but we shouldn’t go look for evil spirits.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Yeah, and some people, that’s sort of the--

Pastor Jëan Ross: That’s right.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: --they hang out their shingle like that’s their ministry; and I don’t see anywhere in the Bible where the disciples were looking for devils they could cast out. They seem to abhor the whole business, but they do it when they had to. Matter of fact, this girl following Paul in Acts 16 I think, they ignored her for several days and finally he said, “Enough is enough." He turned around, he casts out the devil. So I don’t think they were looking for devils to cast out.

Pastor Jëan Ross: Of course, we have the experience of the men who tried to cast out some demons and the demons responded and said, “We know who Jesus is, we know who Paul is, but we don’t know who you are.” And they actually beat up those men.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: The seven sons of Sceva...

Pastor Jëan Ross: Sceva’s sons, that’s right

Pastor Doug Batchelor: ...tried to cast out the devil.

Pastor Jëan Ross: So it’s good to know that God gives us power over these evil spirits but we shouldn’t be looking for them.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Exactly. We have time for one more before our break?

Pastor Jëan Ross: Two minutes, yes I think we do. Let’s go to line number six. Fred is on his cell phone again. Fred, welcome to the program.

Fred: Yes, hi. My question has to do with the creation week and God resting on the seventh day. How do we know that time has not been changed from the creation week to today?

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Good question, how do we know what day the seventh day of the week is? Well, there are several ways I think we can know. One is, we know at least from the time of Christ to the present day, there has been no change in the calendar that affects the weekly cycle. Matter of fact, you could just ask this question: why would any monarch, king, governing agency need to make a change in the weekly cycle? Periodically they’ve made adjustments in the calendar. The calendar cycle and the weekly cycle are totally distinct. People get confused. They look at a calendar, they see the month, they see the days of the week. They think that when you change the calendar it affects the days of the week. It never affects the days of the week.

The week goes one, two, three, four, five, six, seven; one, two, three, four, five, six, seven. It’s not affected by the calendar. So when they would adjust the calendar for the planting seasons they’d do that, but they never had a reason to change the week. We also know, of course, there is a whole nation of Jews that date back to 2004 B.C. and every seventh day they remembered the Sabbath. We know the whole nation did not fall asleep and forget it. And from Abraham back to Adam there was no need for a change then. Matter of fact, all through Noah’s flood the calendars were kept during Genesis about the days of the flood. So they were keeping track of that time.

Well friends, we’re going to take a break now and have some important announcements for you. I’d like to remind you if you haven’t written it down yet, just write down the word Amazing Facts. You type that into the internet, it’ll take you to our web page. You can add .com, .org; and you’ll see that there’s a broad spectrum of resources to enhance your personal study. We’ll tell you more in just a moment.

[COMMERCIAL BREAK]

Pastor Doug Batchelor: We’re back ready for your Bible questions. Before we go to the phones, I’d just like to remind you friends that there’s a list of websites that's growing actually of some of the more common questions that people bring in on the Bible. One of the ways you can remember is the word “truth.” It’s not too hard to remember truth. That’s what we’re about, the Bible truth. And matter of fact, we’ve got that website, the Bible Universe, in addition. But if you have a question on the Sabbath, we just had one a moment ago and I want to tell our caller from Kennewick, Washington you can type in SabbathTruth.com. We get questions periodically on the punishment of the wicked. We have a website called Hell Truth. People ask what happens when you die, Truth About Death. We’ve got…

Pastor Jëan Ross: Prophecy Code.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: …Prophecy Code; questions about Mary Magdalene and Mary the Mother of Jesus, MaryTruth.com. So, yeah, and the Prophecy Code. If you’d like to study prophecy in more depth, and not only can you read the material there but there are DVDs for you to watch. You can listen to the audio. You can have it just about any way you want. We just can't shake your hands and give you a potluck, but there’s a lot of truth at the Amazing Facts' website. Are we ready for the phones Pastor Ross?

Pastor Jëan Ross: We are. Let’s go to Judy who is listening on WMUZ from Bloomfield Town, Michigan. Judy, welcome to the program.

Judy: Hi, Pastor Doug. How are you?

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Hi. Very well. And your question?

Judy: Yes, my Bible teacher made a comment regarding remarriage after divorce based on Matthew 5, verses 31, 32. And she said, “Well, I won’t make any more comment other than what is written in the Word, other than people who are seeking remarriage are, you know, adulteresses.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: So if somebody has been divorced, if they’re saying if they remarry for any reason, no matter what the grounds for divorce were, that they’re breaking the Word?

Judy: Right. Now, in the Word it says, you know, aside from someone having outside relations with their spouse, there is really no cost of being divorced and particularly, you know, shouldn’t be remarried.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Well, of course Jesus said that, "Saving for the cause of fornication," in other words, that then was permissible if, obviously, if a man or woman is married to someone and they’re philandering with or they run off with someone else, the Lord, I think, is not holding you where you’re no longer free for the remainder of your earthly life to marry him; and you can think of a lot of scenarios where that would be cruel. Then there is one other situation in 1st Corinthians chapter 7 where it talks about if a person has an unbelieving spouse. And this is a scenario that, suppose you’ve got two pagans, one of them accepts Christ, suppose the wife accepts Christ. The husband says, “Look, I married a pagan who worshiped Jupiter and now you’re worshiping this Christian religion. I’m leaving you. I’m not going to have any part of this."

Paul says if at all you can stay together and keep your marriage together for the sake of the children, do it. But if your husband departs or if your spouse departs, let them depart; and it says you’re not under bondage in those cases.

Judy: That was kind of like my situation. I thought I was a Christian…

Pastor Doug Batchelor: And by the way, that’s 1st Corinthians--I’m sorry Judy--that’s 1st Corinthians chapter 7, verse 15. “But if the unbelieving depart," meaning the unbelieving spouse, "let him," or her, "depart. A brother or a sister is not under bondage in such cases.” Now what kind of bondage was he talking about? That they were bound to that marriage vow and they were no longer free. So it’s the only bondage that you could be thinking about. What kind of binding is there here that they’re no longer under? I’m sorry, you were explaining something and I jumped in.

Judy: Oh no, I was just mentioning at the time, you know, I was married to a non-believer. I thought I was a Christian at the time. Now I know that I am, but at that time I thought, at least, I was a believer and he wasn’t and he decided to terminate our marriage when our children were very young. And so it’s always trouble.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Well, I don’t mean to be personal but has this ex-husband remarried or?

Judy: Yes.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Well, even under that criteria then, as long as you were faithful you have grounds for remarriage. If you were abandoned because of your faith and he has remarried, according to both definitions, you would have grounds it would seem to me. Does that make sense Pastor Ross?

Pastor Jëan Ross: It does.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Yeah, we have a study guide, Judy, we’ll be happy to send you and it’s talking about “Keys for Happy Marriage.” It’s not just talking about when you’re in marriage, it’s talking about setting up a new one and it deals with some of the principles of marriage. We’d love to send that to you.

Pastor Jëan Ross: Judy, you’ll need to call the resource number, 1-800-835-6747. Ask for the study guide, “Keys for a Happy Marriage.” For anyone who wants to strengthen their marriage or who is contemplating marriage, a great resource, what does the Bible have to say, principles for a happy marriage. Our next caller is, let me see, Rena listening on the internet from Syracuse, Utah. Rena, welcome to the program.

Rene: Yeah, it’s Rene.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: We’re sorry about that. We’re going to blame our engineers who typed it in [laughing], and your question?

Rene: It’s okay. Yeah, my question was, is it okay to judge others like--I don’t know how to make it more specific, like, is it okay to--if you’re Christian, you know, and is it okay to judge others for what they do and tell them, or is it a bad thing?

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Well, you know, Jesus says, “Judge not, lest you be judged.” But then He says, “When you judge, judge a righteous judgment.” Matter of fact, that other one is in John 7:24, He said, “Judge not according to the appearance, but judge righteous judgment.” Now God is not saying that we’re not to use judgment. He says we’re not to pass sentence. Jesus said, “Be careful, with what measure you mete, it’ll be measured to you.” So when we judge and pass sentence on others, we’ve heard many people quote that verse, “Judge not, lest you be judged.” But God isn’t really saying there don’t judge. He’s saying be consistent.

The Lord says, "Don’t take a speck out of your neighbor's eye if you’ve got a log, a big old wood chip in your own eye.” He says, “First remove the log from your own eye, that you can see clearly to help your neighbor with the speck.” You notice He says it’s okay to take the speck out, but make sure you don’t have a log in your own eye. So God is not saying that we shouldn’t hold each other accountable, and that’s the way it’s often used. He never said that.

Rene: Okay.

Pastor Jëan Ross: You know, we don’t know the motive of the heart but we should know whether the actions are in accordance with God’s Word or not.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: That’s right.

Pastor Jëan Ross: We don’t know why they’re doing what they’re doing but if they’re doing something wrong, we should know that this is wrong. Maybe we can help them and encourage them.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: You know, we have a study guide that deals with the subject of judging and judgment and we’ll be happy to send that to you. It’s called, “Pending: Your Case in Court.” If you call the resource number we’ll send that to you for free.

Pastor Jëan Ross: Rene, just call 1-800-835-6747, ask for the study guide “Pending: Your Case in Court” dealing with judging and judging others. Our next caller is Parkley listening on the internet from Miami, Florida. I hope I pronounced your name correctly.

Ponsley: It’s fine, it’s Ponsley.

Pastor Jëan Ross: Ponsley, okay.

Ponsley: Yes. Hi, Doug.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Good. How can we help you tonight?

Ponsley: Good. My question is God created the seven days and created days and nights in creation.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Yes.

Ponsley: And God created Adam and Eve. Now Adam and Eve were made perfect, so what is the purpose of night? We need to sleep at night; then if we were made perfect, we were not supposed to be tired to sleep. What did Adam and Eve do at night? What was the purpose of nighttime?

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Well, there is a verse in the Bible that talks about in the New Earth, it implies that the light of moon will be as the light of the sun, and the light of the sun will be seven times brighter. Now I’m giving you a rough paraphrase on that and I think it’s in Isaiah. Pastor Ross might look up "seven times" or the "light of the sun" and find that in Isaiah for me. But after sin I think that everything got darker; and I believe that before sin, that even the night, the lights that came to the earth from the stars and the moon illuminated things in a beautiful way, and even man and plants, they didn’t necessarily have fatigue but they had a cycle of rest and enjoyment in that rest.

And so the day of activity, the night of rest, I think that was part of God’s original plan. There are some flowers that only open at night. It’s kind of amazing when you think about it.

Pastor Jëan Ross: You know, the body needs to rest, to regenerate, to build itself up...

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Yeah. But Ponsley is saying that, but not in…

Pastor Jëan Ross: ...but not before sin.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Yeah, and in heaven it says they’ll run and not be weary. So I think the rest is different before sin than it is now. Now we rest because we’re exhausted and we’re fatigued. I think it was a pleasant kind of rest. It may have even been conscious during that time, and the dreams. You’ve probably taken an afternoon nap where you just kind of dozed off which was very refreshing and pleasant. The body does--even in a perfect world--I think God designs that the body reboots. They say one of the most important things about rest is not the physical rest because you can lay your body down and still be exhausted, but something about the brain. When it sleeps it sort of reboots the computer so it’s fresh. Sometimes even a thirty-second nap can make a world of difference in how much sharper you are. So we don’t understand all that mystery.

Pastor Jëan Ross: That verse you’ve quoted Pastor Doug, Isaiah chapter 30 and verse 26, “Moreover the light of the moon shall be as the light of sun, and the light of the sun shall be seven fold.” I must be honored. I have never read this verse before.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Well, at least you found it for me. I knew the verse I couldn’t find it.

Pastor Jëan Ross: [Laughing] that's a great verse.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: So I think that’s the way it was before sin; and prophets who have into vision, when they come back to earth they say it’s so dark compared to heaven. You figure in heaven it says the light of God is going to illuminate the city. There is no need of the sun there because He’s so bright. I probably gave you more, what’s that word they say now, too much more information? Hope we didn’t give you too much information.

Pastor Jëan Ross: Overload. Alright, our next caller is Damien listening on WMCA from Brooklyn, New York. Damien, welcome to the program.

Damien: Hi, goodnight.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Good evening.

Damien: Good evening.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: And your question?

Damien: My question is based on choices. Now in the Bible it speaks about, it says, "It is not His will that any should perish, but that all should come to have everlasting life.” And the Bible also talks about predestination. So my question is do we have choices as human beings? Because some people believe that we don’t have choices; everything that happens to us that’s how God has it to happen. I want to know if we really have choices, or some people are to go to heaven and some are to go to hell, but some people believe that.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: I was listening to a sermon today, a Sunday sermon. Sometimes I surf the radio and this minister was preaching on this very subject. Sometimes I wish that I could jump through the radio speaker and get a hold of him and talk to him because they’re just way off. Here’s a foundational truth Damien. God wants our love. You cannot preprogram love. Love must be given willingly, intellectually, by free choice. If I make a computer that says, “I love you Doug, I love you Doug, I love you Doug,” that’s not going to make me feel any better if I preprogrammed the computer to say that.

Damien: Okay.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Love must be processed on its own. Forced love is sometimes called rape. The idea that God creates His creatures and some are preprogrammed to love Him and some are preprogrammed not to, then, for one thing that makes God arbitrary and forcing one group to love Him. It makes Him an accessory to sin in creating creatures that have no option but to sin. Then if we have no choice, why would Joshua say, “Choose ye this day”? Why would Jesus say, “Whosoever will”? That means we get to exercise our will.

Damien: Okay.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: So absolutely, we do have a choice. Now, without God’s help, we need to say, “Lord, help me do the right thing. Come into my heart.” But we can choose to give God our will.

Damien: But this is what I believed but different people that I spoke to, you know, believers and whatever, have a different opinion.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Damien, the reason this doctrine--it gets me upset, we’re going to do a booklet on this--the reason this doctrine is so dangerous is a lot of people are embracing it. It’s a popular doctrine because it basically says, "We are not responsible, we’re all victims, it’s God’s fault." That’s the accusation of the devil: "Sin in this world is God’s fault. God made the devil do it. God makes sinners behave the way they do. They’re preprogrammed, they have no choice." Well, you think about the ramifications of that, it turns God into a tyrant. It’s a very important subject for people to understand.

Damien: This is why I had believed, you know, because I felt that way strongly, that God gave us choices, you know. But some people believe otherwise.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Yeah. I think...

Pastor Jëan Ross: The devil loves that idea because, imagine someone who’s struggling with sin and it’s not always easy to overcome a bad habit or something. And if they have the idea that some are predestined to heaven and some to hell, it’s very easy for them to get discouraged and say, “Well obviously, I’m not the one who is predestined for heaven. I might as well just give up on this and live for the devil.” That’s something the devil would love.

Damien: And I don’t believe that at all, you know. That’s why I called. I listen to you guys all the time and I always wanted to call and to find out about that.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Well we’re glad you made it in. You know, we’re going to print a book on that. We’ve already got the material assembled. You can go to the website, Damien, and there’s an article there called, “Heavenly Hostage.” You can go to the Inside Report magazine articles and we wrote an article on it. We’re going to expand it into a book because we get so many questions on this. Matter of fact, we do have a booklet now, “Can a Saved Man Choose to be Lost?” By Joe Crews. That covers a lot of the material. Maybe we should be sending that to Damien tonight?

Pastor Jëan Ross: Damien, call the resource number 1-800-835-6747 and the booklet is, “Can a Saved Man Choose to be Lost?” Very important subject, we get a lot of questions on that. Our next caller is Max listening on the internet from Brooklyn, New York. Max, welcome to the program.

Max: Good evening, Pastors.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Good evening.

Max: Yes, my question comes from John chapter 5:37...

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Okay.

Max: ...where it says, “And the Father himself, which hath sent me, hath borne witness of me. Ye have neither heard his voice at any time, nor seen his shape.” Now I was wondering, with the experience that Moses had in Exodus 33:11 where it says, “The LORD spoke to Moses as a man speaks to his friend”; and Exodus 33:23 where God shows His back part to Moses, I was wondering is that Jesus that Moses had the experience with, or was that God the Father if we go back to John chapter 5:37 and compare?

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Well, I don’t believe anyone has seen God the Father. If you go to John 6:46, “Not that any man hath seen the Father, save he which is of God, he hath seen the Father.” Christ is saying, "The only Man that saw God the Father face to face is Me, God the Son.” Every other man in Bible times it says, “I saw God,” they saw God the Son, either before, or of course, after His incarnation.

Max: Okay.

Pastor Jëan Ross: In John chapter 8, verse 58, of course--just to back up a little bit--Moses, he's awakened in the wilderness and he sees the burning bush. God speaks to him from the burning bush and Moses says, “Who are you?” And God says, “I AM THAT I AM.” Then in John chapter 8, verse 58 Jesus said, “Verily, I say unto you, before Abraham was, I am.”

Pastor Doug Batchelor: He uses the same title that God used when He appeared to Moses.

Max: Okay.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: So yeah, when God appeared to Jacob, when God appeared to Moses, when God appeared to Abraham, that was God the Son. That’s why Jesus said to the apostles, “If you’ve seen Me, you’ve seen the Father,” So they see a reflection of the Father in Christ; but no man has seen God the Father’s face, except God the son. But in heaven--it says, “Now we see through a glass, darkly; but then face to face.”

Max: Okay. Alright, thanks.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Alright, thanks. Good question, Max.

Pastor Jëan Ross: Tim is listening on WMCA from Jamaica, New York. Tim, welcome to the program.

Tim: Okay, how do you do?

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Very well.

Tim: I’d like to know how it’s going to be when Christ returns? How it’s going to be, like, it’s going to be awesome when He returns and takes the good people up into heaven and leave the wicked behind?

Pastor Doug Batchelor: What will the earth look like?

Tim: Yeah, like, is it going to be so bright, like, you know, it’s going to be…

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Well, yeah. It tells us that the coming of the Lord is going to be like lightening, this is Matthew 24, going from one side of heaven to the other. If you read in Jeremiah chapter 4, verse 23, speaking of the coming of the Lord, Jeremiah says, “I beheld the earth, and, lo, it was without form, and void; and the heavens, and they had no light. I beheld the mountains, and, lo, they trembled, and all the hills moved lightly. I beheld, and, lo, there was no man, and all the birds of heaven were fled.” Well one more verse, “I beheld, and, lo, the fruitful place was a wilderness, and all the cities thereof were broken down at the presence of the LORD, and by his fierce anger.” So the world is going to look like a desolate wilderness at the coming of the Lord.

Tim: At this time nobody can stop it, right? Nobody, you know, obviously earth can stop Him from coming?

Pastor Doug Batchelor: No. Jesus said, “Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will not pass away.” When He comes He’s coming, and nothing can stop him from coming.

Tim: And then the earth will be burned up with the wicked, right?

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Yeah, if you read in 2nd Peter chapter 3 it says, “The elements shall melt with fervent heat, the earth also and the works that are therein shall be burned up.” [KJV]

Tim: But where is the real heaven going to be, on the earth?

Pastor Doug Batchelor: No. Well, when Jesus first comes, the next time Jesus comes we are a caught up--this is 1st Thessalonians 4--to meet Him in the air. He takes us back to the mansions He has prepared off in heaven; some believe it’s through the constellation Orion or the nebula Orion.

Tim: But how is man going to be lifted up, like, will they have wings or how are they going to fly up there?

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Well, I don’t think that’s any problem for the Lord. An example would be in Acts chapter 1:11. When Jesus ascended to heaven, two angels stood there and they said to the disciples as they stood gazing up into heaven, “Men of Galilee, why do you stand here gazing up into heaven? This same Jesus will come in like manner as you have seen him go.” So the same way Christ was caught up in a cloud of angels--it doesn’t say He had wings or that He had a jet pack or anything like that--God is going to use the same power and the saints are going to be caught up. You know, it sounds like Tim would really appreciate our lesson on the second coming, which is, “The Ultimate Deliverance.”

Pastor Jëan Ross: That’s right. It’s a great resource dealing with the second coming of Christ called, “The Ultimate Deliverance.” Call our resource number, 1-800-835-6747. You know, Pastor Doug, there is another one that deals with this 1,000-year period after Jesus comes. It talks about what the earth will be like after the second coming, and we’d like to make that available. It’s called, “1,000 Years of Peace.” So to anyone listening, if you’d like either one of those study guides, call 1-800-835-6747. Our next caller is Fresno listening on WMCA from Brooklyn, New York. Fresno, welcome to the program.

Fresno: Hey, how are you doing? Good evening.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Very well.

Fresno: My question is from--I was reading Isaiah chapter 66, verse 23--and it speaks about how in the new heavens and the new earth, you know, there’s going to be the Sabbath. And my question is in heaven will there still be a seven-day period, and will the concept of a 24-hour day still be in heaven after Jesus Christ comes?

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Well, I think that is a good question. I would start by saying, go back in time before sin, was a 24-hour day part of God’s original plan for this paradise world?

Fresno: Uh-huh.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Okay. When the Lord comes back He is going to activate His original plan. The devil is not interrupting God’s perfect plan, so they’ll return to that. The earth is still going to rotate on its axis and there will probably still be a 24-hour day; because it also tells us that from one new moon to another, the months will be divided by the moon, the weeks will be divided by the days. And it says, “From one new moon to another, and from one Sabbath to another, shall all flesh come to worship before Me.” [KJV] So, I’ve got this theory. I can’t prove it, but no one can really disprove it. I think that the new moon is going to be exactly 28 days so that every new moon will fall on the Sabbath in the New Earth.

Fresno: Okay.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: See what I’m saying?

Fresno: Yeah.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: I think that the whole creation has--we know our earth is off its axis now. A lot of things have been affected by sin and the flood and who knows what; but I think in God’s perfect economy of time there will be four weeks to a month.

Fresno: How about while we’re in heaven during the 1,000 years?

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Well, that’s a good question. I don’t know what the Lord has planned, but I believe that there will still be Sabbath worship. That’s part of His perfect plan for humans. He says, “The Sabbath was made for man.” So if He made it for the human race, if He made it for Adam here on earth, during our time in heaven, well it would sort of be like a 1,000-year Sabbath, won’t it? But, yeah, there may still be weekly divisions. I don’t how God’s going to do it astronomically, but I’m not worried about that. I just want to be there. And we’ll get together around the Tree of Life and talk about it, okay?

Fresno: Yes, Doug.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Alright, God bless you.

Pastor Jëan Ross: Harry is listening on KFIA from California. Harry, welcome to the program.

Harry: Hi. Hey, I was just wondering, Pastor Doug, whether or not the exact year would be for the return of the Savior? Some televangelists and radio evangelists are doing that. I didn’t know if you have ever proclaimed a particular date.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: No, I never have. I've told people that I think, based on the signs, the time is near. Jesus tells us that it’s okay to recognize the signs. Matter of fact He says, “When you see these things come to pass, lift up your heads and know your redemption draws nigh.” So the Lord encourages us to be excited about the eminence of His advent. It’s called “The Blessed Hope.” But I’ve never picked a day or an hour or a year when I said He was going to come. The Lord, I think, gives us pretty clear guidance not to do that. Obviously, every date that people have picked prior to today has failed.

Harry: It’s true, yeah.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: But there are a lot of signs when we can see that the confluence of events are starting to intensify; and that day is getting closer.

Harry: Okay, thank you.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Thank you, Harry.

Pastor Jëan Ross: Let’s see if we can get one quick one in before the program finishes. David, listening on KACS. Welcome to the program, from Washington. David, welcome.

David: Hello. I have a question and it deals with when someone passes away, you know, they fall asleep with the Lord. And I had people--this is thirty-five years ago--people at the church telling me, you know, I should be happy because my mother is in heaven with Jesus; and even at that time at the age of twelve I had read in Revelation that when our mortal body dies, that we are asleep in the arms of the Lord and those who fall asleep are called to Him at His return first…

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Oh--hey David, we’re running out of time. Could I try and give you a quick answer to what you stated?

David: Certainly.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: You’re on the right track. The Bible is very clear that the next conscious thought that a saved person has when they die is the resurrection, but that’s in the future. Between the time they die and the resurrection when the Lord descends and they’ll be caught up to meet Him, they’re sleeping a dreamless sleep, no consciousness of time. We have a website called TruthAboutDeath.com. Truth about Death, David, a lot there. Oh listening friends, you can tell there’s just wall-to-wall Bible questions. We try to dedicate all our time to the questions.

We pray you’ll go to the website. We have a lot more answers there and even archives; and we’d love for you to go to "Contact Us" and write us a note. In the meantime between this program and the next program, there should be about six days and 24 hours. God bless. Jesus is the Truth that sets you free.

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