Living a Fruitful Life ENCORE

Living a Fruitful Life ENCORE

Date: 03/11/2018 
Bible Answers Live is a live call-in radio program where listeners can have their questions answered directly from the Bible.
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Pastor Doug: You’d like to hear an amazing fact, you might be surprised to learn the world's biggest grapevine is not in France or Spain or Italy or one of the Mediterranean countries where grapes typically thrive, it’s in England. That's right, the Hampton Court grapevine was planted back in 1768 by Lancelot Brown.

A hundred and 20 years later in 1887, it was measured and found to be 4 feet around the base. Today, it's 13 feet around the base and the longest branches are a hundred and 20 feet. In fact, the Hampton Court, Palace grapevine is the largest and oldest grapevine in the world.

During its 250-year life, it has outlived five or six glass greenhouse that has been built and dismantled around it.

Throughout the year, the grapevine is carefully pruned, fertilized and thinned by specialists that are trained in viticulture. Because of all of this tender care, back in 2001 this single grapevine produced over 845 pounds of delicious black dessert grapes. Queen Victoria used to have the grapes sent to the Royal household at Windsor.

In 1909 King Edward VII decide the Royal household cannot use so many grapes, so they would be sold to visitors. Incredible, 845 pounds from one grapevine. The Bible tells us that Jesus compares himself with a grapevine. Stay with us friends and we’re going to talk about it as Amazing Facts brings you this edition of Bible answers live.

[PROGRAM INTRODUCTION]

Pastor Doug: Welcome listening friends to Bible answers live and we are alive and we have lines open, if you have a Bible question, we would encourage you to give us a call. It is a free phone call and the number is 800 God says, that's 800-463-7297 brings you here to the studio. One more time, 800 God says 800-463-7297 given a call right, now excellent odds your question will be on tonight's program. My name is Doug Batchelor.

Pastor Ross: My name is Jean Ross good evening, listening friends and Pastor Doug let's start the program with prayer. Dear Father, once again we thank you for the opportunity to study your word together. Lord we ask for your spirit to guide our hearts and build those listening whoever they might be leaders to a clear understanding of your word. For you have said, “They shall know the truth and the truth will set you free.” Thank you Lord for you promised to be with us in Jesus name Amen.

Pastor Doug: Amen.

Pastor Ross: Pastor when you opened the program you were talking about this incredible vine. You talked about a big vine, not only is it big but it's very productive. Produced tremendous amounts of grape and I guess these grapes are pretty good.

Pastor Doug: They were providing dessert for the palace it must have been pretty good. That’s amazing that it would do. All the same some redwood trees grapevine. When you think about grapevine, it is kind of interesting that you got the vine coming out of the ground and then you know hundred feet away it's carrying all the nourishment and producing this luscious fruit so far away from the source of the earth and the nutrients and minerals.

Jesus uses that illustration to make one of those most beautiful lessons for us in John 15. He says, “I am the true vine and my father's a vine dresser, every branch in me,” all the branches that are connected to the vine, "that does not bear fruit he takes it away, prunes it. Every branch that bears fruit, he prunes it that it may bear more fruit. You're already clean because of the word that I've spoken to you, abide in me and I and you. As the branch cannot bear fruit by itself unless it abides in the vine, neither can you unless you abide in me? I am the vine, you are the branches. He that abides in me and I in him bears much fruit, for without me you can do nothing.”

The Bible tells us there in Galatians chapter five that, the evidence that a Christian has been transformed by the Holy Spirit is they will have the fruits of the spirit. Its love of Jesus, Galatians 5:22 love, joy, peace, long-suffering, goodness, Faith, Meekness, mercy. All of this is going to be seen in the believer's life, if they’re abiding in Christ. The power of God and the love of Christ transforms us and makes us new creatures.

I know there's a lot of people that are listening that may be have grown up in a church, you’ve grown up in a Christian home, you go to church, you do the outward Christian things but you know in your heart you don't have that love, that joy, that peace and you long to have the fruits of the Spirit. We have a special offer, that is going to tell you how to have a productive fruitful life by being connected to the vine and it's free.

Pastor Ross: All you’re left to do is gives us a call on our resource phone number and you can ask for the study guide called A Love that Transforms. The number is 800-835-6747 and ask for the study guide called A Love that Transforms. One more time is the resource phone number it’s 800-835-6747. If you have a Bible question our phone line here to the studio is 800-463-7297 that’s 800-463-7297. Well, I think we already got our first caller this evening. We have Sebastian, listening from Palm Beach Florida. Sebastian, welcome to the program.

Sebastian: Good evening pastor Ross, good evening pastor Doug Batchelor. Thank you for taking my call.

Pastor Doug: Sure, we’re glad to talk with you.

Sebastian: Okay. Well, I know that in the books of Zachariah and in the book of Psalms, there are prophecies that reference Christ betrayal. My question is, was Judas predestined to betray Christ?

Pastor Doug: No, I don't think so and this is a great question. It's had a boy, lots of debate from theologians through the ages. Some would argue, "Yes, Judas was predestined to betray Jesus." I see a difference biblically between God being all-knowing and be able to predict what happens and a person still having the choice. While God knew what Judas would do-- God knows everything. He knows everything in the future, he knows everything in the past, he is all-knowing, he knows who is listening is going to be be saved and who is not. That doesn’t mean he is making it happen.

We still have choices and we need to live as if we have those choices. Jesus gave Judas every opportunity to change his mind. He went to wash his feet, he appealed to him them but he hardened his heart. It's not like God was creating creatures and he said, “We’ve got to make one be the fall guy, that will betray Jesus. Sorry Judas, but you're going to have to be the traitor, I’m going to make you to be a traitor and then after you betray Jesus doing just what I'd created you to do and then I'm going to throw you in hell." Can you see there would be a problem with that, it almost makes God an accessory to the crime?

Sebastian: Yes. I see.

Pastor Doug: God knows what was going to happen and he predicted in the prophecies. You're right about that, but I don't think the Judas was born with the mission that he should betray Christ. Everyone is born with a free will and opportunity.

Sebastian: It’s okay. That was just something that has been taking my interest in the whole lot, the Judas situation and whether or not he was predestined. I've always known that he had the freedom of choice, because God gave everybody the freedom of choice. I just want to get the clarification on this particular situation. Thank you.

Pastor Doug: Absolutely Sebastian, I appreciate your call.

Pastor Ross: We have a book talking about this idea that, where does free will coming to our salvation and freedom to choose. The book is called Can a Saved Man Choose to be Lost. We’ll be happy to send it to anybody who calls and asks dealing with the subject of predestination. All you need to do is to call us on our resource phone number the number is 800-835-6747. You can ask the book called Can a saved man Choose to be Lost. We’ll be happy to send it to anybody who calls and asks. You also read it for free online at the Amazing Facts websites, amazingfacts.org. Our next caller is Christopher and he’s listening from my New York. Christopher welcome to the program.

Christopher: Good evening.

Pastor Doug: Evening, and your question tonight?

Christopher: Yes, I'd like to know your biblical definition of everlasting fire and Matthew 25:41.

Pastor Doug: All right, I’m going to go there really quick, and here Jesus is sharing a parable where he’s talking about the sheep and the goats. And he said, he’ll then say to those on His left hand, “Depart from me you cursed into everlasting fire prepared for the devil and his angels.” So you want to know what does everlasting there mean?

Christopher: Yes, what was the definition of everlasting?

Pastor Doug: Well, the word everlasting there means -- I think its aeonus, which means aeons. But I believe it means everlasting. But what is everlasting there, is the destruction of the fire lasts forever. There’s no repentance. There’s no second chance. What the fire does is it’s going to be everlasting. One reason we know this and I forget the verse of Him where He talks about Sodom and Gomorrah are destroyed with eternal fire. The Lord tells us that the way that He’s going to deal with the wicked is the same way that He dealt with Sodom and Gomorrah. He tells us that Sodom and Gomorrah were destroyed with eternal fire.

Pastor Ross: That’s Jude seven.

Pastor Doug: Jude verse seven, there’s only one chapter in Jude.

Pastor Ross: Jude [cross-talk].

Pastor Doug: Jude verse seven. You want to read that for us?

Pastor Ross: Yes. Sodom and Gomorrah and the cities around them, in similar manner to these, having given themselves over to sexual immorality and gone after strange flesh, are set forth as an example and here’s the point. Suffering the vengeance of eternal fire, of the translation say 'everlasting fire'.

Pastor Doug: Right. Then it’s just telling us that those cities were burned up, the Bible says they were never rebuilt and the result of that fire was everlasting. Does that make sense Christopher?

Christopher: The cursed doesn't want to be kept into fire if the fire's only put out.

Pastor Doug: Well, the Bible says that the wicked -- If you look at Malachi chapter four, it says, “The day is coming that will burn as an oven and all the proud and all that do wickedly will be burnt up. It will leave them neither root nor branch.” Bible tells us they will be consumed. So there is a lake of fire. There is punishment. Everyone is rewarded according to his works. But ultimately, the Lord is going to make all things anew. Revelation says, “There’s no more pain or sorrow or death. The former things have passed away. All things are made new.”

So yes, we believe what the Christians believed many years ago, that Bible tells us that ultimately the fires of hell consumed the wicked, that they perish and that God does not have an eternal torture chamber where, a zillion years down the line, he has people writhing in sulfur and brimstone and they’ve only just begun. Billion years go by and still has not begun- [laughs].

Christopher: Malachi 4:1, that’s an old covenant. Jesus came in to bring the new covenant. He said that the old covenant . So the fire is everlasting. He said that punishment is everlasting. The life eternal is everlasting in 46. They both the same . The life that--

Pastor Doug: Yes, do you believe that the bodies are burned or the souls continue to burn or both body and soul continue to born? What do you believe?

Christopher: I believe that both body and souls will cast into the lake of fire and the sinners are going to pay for his sins eternally because if there’s no eternal punishment, there’s no purpose enough Jesus done on the cross. You could just live in fornication in your whole life. You just want to die.

Pastor Doug: Is the only reason you want to live in fornication because you’re afraid of eternal punishment?

Christopher: No. You live in fornication, but there’s no consequences to the sin. You’re just going to die-

Pastor Doug: If a person goes to the lake of fire and they burn according to what they deserve, let’s suppose for a moment they burn for a month, that’d be pretty bad. I mean, I think that’d be a major deterrent. Does a person need to burn forever and ever in order for it to be a deterrent? I don’t think the hell should be the reason anyone serves the Lord. I think love ought to be the reason we serve the Lord.

Christopher: Yes, that’s for the Christian. But the sinners have to be punished for their sins because God is the God of eternity.

Pastor Doug: We agree with that.

Christopher: Eternity is forever. They’re going to live forever in either heaven or hell. [crosstalk] for God is eternal.

Pastor Doug: You and I agree that the sinner is going to be punished. There’s no disagreement on that. The Bible is very clear, there is a lake of fire. It says the wicked are cast into the lake of fire. It calls it the second death. Where I think we disagree, is how long they stay in that lake of fire. I believe when God says there is no more pain, all things are made new, that sin is not immortalized forever and ever, that the sinner does not get eternal life. Eternal life is promised those who accept Jesus. Without the son there is no life. God told Adam and Eve, “When you disobey, you will die.”

Death means the absence of life. You’re saying that they’re alive in medieval torture chamber through ceaseless ages -- I mean, just think about that. You got some 14-year old. He’s passed the age of accountability and he’s going to burn just as long as Adolf Hitler and Josef Stalin. There’s really no justice in there. Hey Christopher, we have to take some other calls. I appreciate your question and we will send you a free study guide on this. It has all the scriptures that you’re talking about. It’s called Is the Devil In Charge of Hell.

Pastor Ross: Yes, the number to call is 800-835-6747. You can ask for the study guide called Is the Devil In charge of Hell. We’ll be happy to send this to you Christopher or anybody who calls and asks. That number again is 800-835-6747. We also have a website that’s dedicated to the subject of what happens to the wicked. It’s called helltruth.com. Great amount of resources and video you can actually watch of sermons, some books, study materials. Take a look at it, helltruth.com. I think you’ll find it very helpful.

Pastor Doug: Thank you for your call Christopher. Our next caller is Gabriel, listening from Riverdale, Iowa. Gabriel, welcome to the program.

Gabriel: Hi.

Pastor Doug: Hi and your question tonight.

Gabriel: Where did God come from?

Pastor Doug: I don’t know. You’ve asked the hardest question so far. Let me just see if I could answer this way Gabriel. There are some things that are a great mystery. Even the brightest minds in the universe don’t know where everything came from. I believe in God. I believe that God has always existed. I know it’s hard for us to comprehend that, but it’s something like a circle that doesn’t have an end or a beginning. "God is from everlasting to everlasting," the Bible says. It’s kind of like you could go around the world from east to west and you’ll never get to the end, you just keep going. So He’s always existed.

Some people that don’t believe in God, they believe in evolution. They think that the universe was formed when there was an explosion and the big bang and our solar system came from a big bang. Then you say, “What caused the big bang?” Well, there were these gas particles and this nebula and they collided. So where did the gas particles come from? Even scientists that don’t believe in God will say, “Well, we don’t know.”

Something always existed, because one thing we know Gabriel is that, from nothing you get nothing. So something has to exist to get something. So God has always existed. Now those are some deep things, does that make sense? You there?

Gabriel: Yes.

Pastor Doug: That helps a little bit maybe, huh?

Gabriel: Yes. But don’t you think that God has to come from somewhere?

Pastor Doug: Well, where do you think he comes?

Gabriel: I’m not sure.

Pastor Doug: [chuckles] Yes, you and I are together on that. I mean, in order for somebody to create God, then they would have to be God. Do you play with lego?

Gabriel: Yes.

Pastor Doug: Do you ever make anything out of lego?

Gabriel: Yes.

Pastor Doug: What’s the most interesting thing you made? Tell me real quick.

Gabriel: A lego bridge.

Pastor Doug: All right, when you look at the lego bridge, did it happen by itself or can you tell that someone had to use intelligence to make that bridge? Someone had to use their brain to make that bridge, right?

Gabriel: Yes.

Pastor Doug: That was you, okay? Whenever you see something that’s got order and design, it means there’s an intelligence that made it. You are a lot more complicated than a lego bridge, which means that there is an intelligence that made you. That ingenious, that intelligence that made you is God. He made all things. So He’s always existed. We don’t know. It’s a mystery where He came from. But I sure appreciate your call Gabriel. You would enjoy that number one study guide that we send out sometimes, Is There Anything Left You Can Trust.

Pastor Ross: The number to call is 800-835-6747. That is the resource phone number and you can ask for study guide number one. Actually, you know what Gabriel? I think you’ll also enjoy a series of lessons that Pastor Doug did for kids called Amazing Adventure. I don’t think we could give that away for free, but maybe your mom or your dad can get it at the Amazing Facts website. It’s called Amazing Adventure, a whole set of 10 lessons that are very interactive. I think you’ll enjoy that.

Pastor Doug: That’s right.

Pastor Ross: Friends, if you have a Bible question, the phone line here to the studio is 800-463-7297. Again, that number is 800-463-7297 with your Bible question and we’re going to go to our next caller now and we’ve got – let’s see, we’ve got Carol listening in from Ohio. Carol, welcome to the program.

Carol: Hello.

Pastor Doug: Hi, thanks for your call.

Carol: Thank you. I have a question about Jeremiah 45:5 especially the last part. The whole thing says, “And seekest thou great things for thyself? Seek them not for behold I will bring evil upon all flesh, saith the Lord. But thy life--" this the part that gets me, “thy life will I give unto thee for a prey in all places whither thou goest.” what does that mean?

Pastor Doug: Well, for one thing when it says your life I’ll give you as a prize and I’m reading the-

Carol: No, as a prey-

Pastor Doug: Yes, I’m reading the New King James Version, you’re reading the King James version, we’re looking at the same verse. It basically means that Jerusalem was about to be destroyed by Babylon. Many people would perish in that war. God is telling Jeremiah, "Don’t have big plans for what’s going to happen in Jerusalem but I’m going to save your life and I’m going to give you your life as a prize." Jeremiah did survive the destruction of Jerusalem, matter of fact the chief guard gave him a cash reward and said, “You want to go to Babylon with us, do you want to stay here?” He chose to stay.

He was spared through it all but the city and the nation was destroyed, just decimated, the temple was burnt, the palaces were burnt, it was basically turned to rubble because of their rebellion.

Carol: Okay, that makes it a little easier to understand.

Pastor Doug: Yes, and what he did for Jeremiah he also did for the nation in that, even though Israel was carried off captive, Judah was carried to Babylon. He preserved them there as a nation and brought them back again. Wherever they went he kept them alive as a nation. And it happened not only were they destroyed by the Babylonians, they were conquered by the Egyptians, they came back again, they came back from Babylon. Then they were conquered by the Romans for 1900 years and in 1948 they came back again so God has preserved Israel as a nation in a miraculous way unlike any other nation in the world.

Carol: True, just a short little question to ask you, when the Israelites left Egypt did they have animals and how did they feed them?

Pastor Doug: Yes, they did. They had quite a bit of livestock, matter of fact when Moses told Pharaoh, “We’re going into wilderness Pharaoh said, “You can go but leave your animals here,” and Moses said, “No, we need our animals cause some of them we’re going to use as sacrifices.” The Sinai Peninsula and even Saudi Arabia back-- you’re talking almost 4000 years ago, was a lot more temperate and they had grass and they had cattle and flocks. You can read the book of Job and the area around Edom, Job had vast flocks and herds and sheep there had to be a lot more pasture and grass.

Even in North Sahara there’s in the desert that show crocodiles and giraffes and all these savanna animals. The desert-- the climate’s changed a lot in 4000 years. It used to be a lot more pasture land back then.

Carol: Okay, the wilderness was just away from the city not necessarily desert?

Pastor Doug: Yes, it wasn’t the dry sandy desert that it is now, it was a little more of grasslands. They were probably able to feed their flocks. The problem had they never once said-- the whole wilderness wandering they never once said, "There’s no food for our flocks," they did say there’s no water so there must have always been grass.

Carol: Okay, all right thank you very much I appreciate it.

Pastor Doug: The next caller is Michael listening from Miami, Florida. Michael welcome to the program.

Michael: Hello Pastor David, Pastor Ross, good evening. My question is about confusion that I had when I was reading Proverbs chapter 26, verse four and verse five is where I got a little confused. They seem to contradict each other. In four, "Answer not a fool according to his folly, lest thou also be like unto him." Then verse five says, it's like the direct opposite, "Answer a fool according to his own folly, lest he be wise in his own conceit". I know Solomon sometimes speaks, I guess a bit enigmatically in Proverbs but I was wondering if you could shed a little light on that.

Pastor Doug: Well, we’ve got a few similar expressions in English that go along with what Solomon is saying here that, you lose either way is basically what he’s saying. Solomon is using a little bit of irony here, he said, “Don’t answer a fool according to his folly,” if he’s talking foolishly and you answer him according to his foolish question you start sounding like him but he said if you don’t answer him he’s going to think he’s right. No matter what when you talk to a fool you’re going to lose is what Solomon is saying.

This is a statement he’s making tongue and cheek.

If you answer a fool you start sounding foolish, if you don’t answer a fool he’s going to think he’s made a point and he’s right and you’re speechless so you got to answer him but then you start sounding foolish. It says you’re going to lose when you talk to a fool. In the verse proceeding he says quite a few things about the fool, if you know he’s talked about fools in verse three, he talks about fools and verse seven. Solomon who was the wisest man who ever lived was probably irritated when people asked silly questions.

Pastor Ross: It’s almost as if Solomon is thinking out loud and he says, “Well, don’t answer the fool,” then he thinks, “Wait a minute if I don’t answer the fool then he’s going to think he’s wise so no, then answer.” You can’t win either way, communicating with a fool there’s not a whole lot of options that’s available.

Pastor Doug: I think most people out there can relate to that, it’s in their life.

Michael: I was wondering would that then be like if I were to come across – wouldn’t call anyone a fool but if I were to come across a fool so to speak should I answer them according to their own folly, I don’t know?

Pastor Doug: I think you’re better off – you know what? There’s one more verse Solomon said, “He that restrains his lips is wise and even when a fool holds his peace he’s esteemed wise.” Sometimes I’ve been in board meetings, and I knew aware of my head. I don’t say anything so people will think I’m smart but--

[laughter]

Yes, when you are in doubt don’t say anything you’re usually safer. [laughs] We really appreciate your question Michael for giving us a call.

Friends in just a moment we’re going to be taking a break, we do have some lines open and we’re going to be coming back second half of the program, we want to hit the ground running and so I see some of you standing by. David, Sally, Jason we’re going to get your calls in just a minute and there are other lines open, if you have a Bible question give us a call.

Here’s the number again, 800, you ready, 463-7297, 800-463-7297. Also, even as we’re listening if you’re near a smart phone or a computer or an iPad or some device if you’ve not been to the amazing facts website we hope that you’ll go there. It is one of the busiest Christian websites on the internet. I’m not just saying that. You type in the word amazing facts on Google, on Yahoo it takes you to our site because there are so many Bible resources there that people are using. We hope you’ll find that a blessing.

Going to take a break, get a breath, drink of water, be right back, call in with your questions.

[COMMERCIAL BREAK]

Pastor Doug: We're back and we are all ready to go. We do still have a line or two open. Again 800-463-7297 and we're thankful if you joined along the way this is Bible Answers Live where we are doing a live international interactive Bible Studying and my name is Doug Batchelor.

Pastor Ross: My name is Jean Ross and we got Sally listening from KY, where is-

Pastor Doug: Kentucky.

Pastor Ross: That's what it is. Sally, welcome to the program.

Sally: Hi there.

Pastor Ross: Hi. How are you doing?

Sally: Okay.

Pastor Ross: And your question.

Sally: You've just answered a gentleman's question about predestination and Judas, and I was good with that answer except that in the Bible it tells that the devil entered Judas to have him to go do what he did. Was that still Judas' free will?

Pastor Doug: Well, at one point, a person can grieve away the Holy Spirit and be possessed and before Satan entered Judas, that means he wasn't controlling Judas right? When Judas finally at the last supper, when Jesus said, "One of you is going to betray me." Judas had a chance to repent and confess Christ was washing his feet, but when Judas said, "Lord is it I?" Like he didn't know, he knew it was.

And finally, Jesus said, "Go do what you do quickly." Then Judas knew what he was talking about. That point Satan entered Judas. He probably reached the point of no return then and committed the unpardonable sin, and it doesn't mean that he was predestined all of a sudden. It just means that his doom was fixed at that point. Satan was controlling him then. Satan was also controlling him when Judas hung himself because the devil often discourages a person and leads him to despair and suicide.

Sally: Okay, I just never heard that part explained, I like that.

Pastor Doug: Well good. I'm glad that makes sense and we appreciate your calling in Sally thank you very much.

Pastor Ross: The phone line here to the studio if you have a Bible question is 800-463-7297. We do have some lines open. Good time to call. 800-463-7297 and we have Jason who is listening from Wisconsin. Jason welcome to the program.

Jason: Hi I'm doing alright tonight.

Pastor Ross: Good. And what's your question?

Jason: Today, I was talking with my mother in-law about disciplining my children, and she said that is if we're going to follow the Bible there should be verses in there about what we should and shouldn't do but I can't find any.

Pastor Doug: Well, there's several verses I think that talk about how to train your children. You know, of course, the Bible says, "Fathers do not provoke your children to wrath. Rather would you want to be fair and just with them?" And so to be loving, there are verses that talk about appropriate discipline. And it says, "He that loves his son chastens him." And that chastisement might mean time out in the corner. And when they're younger sometimes it may mean corporal punishment.

The Bible talks about part of family discipline is to train them by reading the Word of God and telling them the principles of God's law, what's right and wrong from a very early age. And it says, "When they rise up when you come to the house when you will go to bed at night." And just surrounding them with the principles. Pastor Ross did a program of family and child rearing a couple of years ago.

Pastor Ross: John: Yes, we did. And the verse that comes to mind is Proverbs 22:6 which says, "Train up a child in the way that he should go and when he is old he will not depart from it." From a very early age, we ought to be training our children in love guiding them. And of course, one of the biggest ways to teach our children is by example. Parents in living up their faith, they're an example to the kids. And then also encouraging them and disciplining is needed but leaving them alone, training them.

Pastor Doug: Someone said once, "While children may not listen to their parents they almost always imitate them." That someone else said that "Christianity is more caught than taught." Kids catch it because they see their parents living it out or they don't and then that's a different problem.

Jason: All right. Perfect answers.

Pastor Doug: We appreciate your call. If it were that series you'd probably see it on YouTube, about the family series that you did.

Pastor Ross: I don't know if it is but it's called Raising Your Kids for Heaven. If you just go to the Amazing Facts web site and type that in amazingfacts.org/com type in Raising Kids for Heaven I think it'll direct you there.

Pastor Doug: Appreciate your call Jason.

Jason: All right thank you.

Pastor Doug: Thank you.

Pastor Ross: Next caller is David listening from Minnesota. David welcome to the program.

Pastor Doug: That's Michigan I think.

Pastor Ross: Michigan. It's mixed up in all of these abbreviations.

Pastor Doug: Pastor Ross is from South Africa and so he struggles with some of the acronyms for-

Pastor Ross: I know they're pretty close together, Michigan and Minnesota, I know they're up there somewhere.

David: It's okay, there's no problem. Hi pastors. Thank you for taking my call. I rejoice in my salvation that Jesus has given me so much. I'm finding that I'm having some difficulty understanding what the scriptures talk about in the 2nd Thessalonians 2 about this man of sin here in chapter two. I know he's kind of spoken of a little bit by the Apostle Paul and the Apostle says that the mystery of iniquity is already working and I'm wondering and needing more knowledge about who is this man of sin?

How can he be recognized? Especially after the Apostle had mentioned that that day that he speaks of here isn't going to come until he's revealed or until he is recognized. How can we recognize him more for who he is and all that he actually is?

Pastor Doug: Great question there. In Thessalonians, let me just read the verse to our friends that are driving and I'll start with verse three. This is 2nd Thessalonians 2:3 "Let no one deceive you by any means for that day, speaking of the day of the Lord, will not come unless a falling way comes first and the man of sin is revealed the son of perdition who opposes and exalts himself above all that is called God or worship. So that he sits as God in the temple of God showing himself that he is God." There it's talking about this office, this person that is going to be putting themselves in the place of God, showing themselves that they are God.

Now a common mistake I think is made and many dear people in the Christian world when it says, "Sitting in the temple of God showing himself that he is God." Well, when Paul wrote this the Jewish temple was about to be destroyed and it's never been rebuilt since 70 A.D. and so some look at this verse and say in order for this Anti-Christ power and John says, there were many Anti-Christ power. But this is certainly an anti-Christ power sitting in the temple of God that means they must rebuild the Jewish temple.

Not necessarily. The Bible says that "The church is the temple of God." Paul says, "What don't you know that you are the temple of God." And Jesus said, "Destroy this temple made with hands that I will make one without hands so that's a body of Christ."

This Anti-Christ power puts himself over the church or the temple of God asking for worship. Saying that he is God or taking at least divine privileges. Claiming divine privileges. To fully answer what that power is and who this individual is, I'd like to send you a study guide for free. It's called Who is the Anti-Christ. Because this can take too long to go through it all. I may have to go to Daniel 7 and Revelation 13 and several verses. But can we send you a copy of that David?

David: You surely can.

Pastor Doug: All right. Pastor Ross will give you the number. It's a free phone call and no one will harass you. We will just send you the lesson.

Pastor Ross: The number to call is 800-835-6747 you can ask the study guide called "Who is the Anti-Christ" and we'll be happy to send that to anybody who calls and asks. Again the number is 800-835-6747. Ask the study guide 'Who is the Anti-Christ'. Our phone line here to the studio with a Bible question is 800-463-7297. And we have Chris that is listening from Chico, California. Chris welcome to the program.

Chris: Hello Pastor Ross and Pastor Batchelor.

Pastor Ross: Hi.

Chris: Hi, the question I had, I was talking to a friend of mine from a certain denomination and he seems to think that God or Jesus when he died, didn't go to the right hand of the father afterwards.

Pastor Doug: Well, when Christ-- first of all, God is omnipresent. Right? The idea that Christ could be separated from God, and the only time Jesus was separated from God was when he was on the cross and when he's suffering for our sins. The father basically forsook him for us because he experienced what the sinner experiences. But God also does have a dwelling place when we pray, we say "Our Father which art in heaven," because there's a place where he dwells. Even though he is a spiritual being, he does seem to have a body of some form and he is in this heavenly temple. When Christ rose from the dead he told Mary, "Do not cling to me," this is John 21, "for I have not yet ascended to my father but go to the brethren, say I go to my God and your God and to my father and your father." Christ ascended to the father, he was coroneted, he was seated throned, victorious at the right hand of the father as soon as he ascended. Then that basically act of it as work as our High Priest, where he continues to serve.

Then you read in Hebrews, Jesus is before the Father and he serves as our High Priest, and for the first couple of thousand years of church history or nearly 1800 years, Jesus was going through the comparable service of what a priest would have done on a daily basis interceding in behalf of the lost.

The Bible says,” He ever lives to make intercession for us.” But then as we enter the last age of the church the late age of Laodicea crisis entered into the Holy of Holies now, a heavenly day of atonement just before he comes. I don't know if this is what you're talking about. Does that make sense?

Chris: I was just reading Colossians, it says, "Then you have been raised with Christ, seek the things that are above where Christ is seated at the right hand of God, which would be the Holy of Holies doesn't Holy place on the right of God?

Pastor Doug: Yes, I don't know that-- we have to be careful not to fix Jesus into one geographic position and say for the last 2,000 years like when you're on an airplane, going through turbulence the pilot says don't anyone get out of their seat. Jesus has not been buckled in for 2,000 years, the idea that he can't get up, move around or do anything he is certainly honored and enthroned by the father but he's also ministering as our high priest in heaven. Jesus talks to the other beings in the universe and his angels, he's not like us to disrupt him.

Pastor Ross: Yes, just one additional thought on that. It doesn't mean that the God the Father is also limited exclusively to the most Holy place for the last 2,000 years. it's quite possible that the Father could have also been in that first compartment of the heavenly sanctuary with the Son. Daniel gives the idea that at some point God the Father called the Ancient of Days moves into the most Holy place, then one like into the Son of Man which would be Christ enters in and this heavenly judgment begins in heaven. So, yes this is probably several verses that give us that idea.

Pastor Doug: What you're reading there in Colossians, of course we all agree with that and Jesus is with the father. Thank you very much for we do have that study guide that talks about the sanctuary.

Pastor Ross: Yes, called God drew the plans-

[crosstalk]

-the number to call for that is 800-835-6747, you can ask the study guide called God drew the plans. Again 800-835-6747, the study guide name is God drew the plans. Our next caller is Eva listening from Vancouver Washington, Eva welcome to the program.

Eva: Hi

Pastor Doug: Hi Eva how are you.

Eva: I’m just fine thank you.

Pastor Doug: Your question tonight.

Eva: Okay, the wars and how God would have them destroy like groups of people, even the livestock, the women, in the Old Testament is that symbolic for today, where its spiritual warfare fighting against the evil?

Pastor Doug: Well, you are very perceptive. When the children of Israel came into the Promised Land, the Lord was concerned that if they spared some of these people that were involved in very disgusting pagan practices, there were a lot of sexual rituals and disease. It was-- some of those nations they'd child sacrifice and the Lord said,” Don't spare them because you'll inter-marry with them, then you will follow their ways and you'll Forsake me.” That's it, they didn't come obey the Lord they did spare some of them, they did intermarry, they did a wander from God.

All the things that God said would happen would happen. In our lives when we come to Jesus, he wants us to get rid of all the other Idols, all the things that are taking us away from the Lord need to be forsaken. You're right in that sense that we shouldn't make alliances in our lives with the world. Those things need to-- we need to plow up the ground, if you leave any weeds it's going to start choking the other plants. You want to say

Eva: That's what he's telling us, through the Old Testament is to destroy all the evil-- is that what you're getting from that?

Pastor Doug: That's probably how I would teach it even if you had an essay question-

Eva: It’s good-

Pastor Doug: Yes God wants us to do that in our lives where he's got complete dominion. He doesn't want to share it with the pagans. Good question Eva, I appreciate that. Thank you for your call tonight.

Pastor Ross: Our next caller is Emma listening from Toronto Canada, Emma welcome to the program.

Emma: Hi, pastors I was there good evening.

Pastor Ross: Good evening.

Emma: How are you?

Pastor Doug: We are doing well how are you?

Emma: I’m good thank you. I have a question regards to the tithe we pay in church. I see some pastors preach against the tithe because they say that in the Old Testament--but now some pastors also say, "If you don’t pay tithe, you don’t get blessings from God." I want to know which is which? Is it compulsoryfor us to pay Tithe because God said for us to get a blessing from God, that’s what I want to know?

Pastor Doug: Good question, well there are some pastors that say well tithing is an Old Testament teaching but there is a New Testament teaching. The New Testament teaching would go beyond Tithe, it wouldn't be less than tithe. If you look for instance in Acts chapter two, when the Holy Spirit was poured out it says that,” No man said that anything he had was his own but they were selling their houses, their lands, liquidating their property and giving it to the church to spread the gospel.”

In the Old Testament it was 10% of your increase went towards the proclamation of the word, now Jesus supports that at least tithe is still in place because in Matthew 23:23, Christ said to the Pharisees, he said, “You pay Tithe of mint and anise and cummin those are the plants in the herb garden. And he said,” But you're omitting the weightier matters of the law, just as mercy and faith.

These you ought to do and don't leave the other the tithing undone.” Jesus said,” Don't neglect tithing but don't forget about justice, mercy and faith.”

The New Testament would certainly support at least Tithe. So, if a church is saying all the tithe is the Old Testament I hope they're offering the New Testament teaching which is a higher percentage than tithes because New Testament Christians don't have less faith than Old Testament Christians, see what I'm saying? Does that make sense?

Emma: Okay. It makes sense. My question is

Pastor Doug: Your phone we can't hear you Emma, your phone is breaking up. You know sister we've got a bad connection let's tell you what, we'll send you a lesson on this that answers all the questions about tithing in the New Testament and what the teaching of tithe is, it's free.

Pastor Ross: The number to call is 800-835-6747, you can ask for the study guide called In God we trust. Again the number is 800-835-6747 the study guide is called In God We Trust. Our next caller is Alexandra listening from-- let's see that that is North Carolina, Alexandria Welcome to the program, we might have lost her.

Pastor Doug: Alexandra if you call back we will put you on.

[crosstalk]

Pastor Ross: We’ve got Henry listening from the Bronx New York, Henry welcome to the program.

Henry: Yes, how are you?

Pastor Ross: Doing well.

Henry: .

Pastor Doug: Well thank you likewise you can say that for a few more days and then we'll be in February.

Henry: I know I say that to a lot of people and they keep on telling me, "Happy New Year," that sounds better but-- my question is before Jesus Christ comes back, will all the prophecies be fulfilled?

Pastor Doug: All the prophecies up to the second coming there are prophecies in the Bible that talk about the millennium and their prophecies in the Bible that talk about heaven, those things don't happen until you know New Jerusalem comes down until the millennium is complete in the judgment. There's prophecies about the judgment and the punishment of the wicked. Those prophecies still remain but when Christ comes back, all of the prophecies about trouble on earth will be fulfilled and the different nations they'll all be fulfilled.

Do you like studying prophecy?

Henry: Yes I do. One more question I want to ask you, for people who don’t believe in God and the ones that are confused, when judgment day comes, what will happen to them?

Pastor Doug: Well, people who are confused, well-

Henry: Some believe that the second coming of Christ, some of them don’t believe some believe, some are confused, if they die being confused, when the day comes, what will happen?

Pastor Doug: Well, the Lord looks on the heart and he knows that if a person is confused because they're neglecting knowledge or if they're confused just because they are uncapable of understanding and they just don't have the evidence. The Lord is going to if there may be people who will be redeemed that didn't understand some of the prophecies but they lived up to the Christian light that they had and then there are people the Bible says some are destroyed for lack of knowledge because they reject knowledge and that's in Hosea 6:4 because you reject knowledge I’ll also reject you. It depends on why they're confused.

The Lord is merciful though, Henry I know that-

Pastor Ross: That is Hosea 4:6 that you are referring to-

Pastor Doug: I said six for I knew I had that close.

[laughter]

Thank you very much for your question Henry and I appreciate that and we're going to take another call.

Pastor Ross: We've got Julie listening from Bronx, New York. Julie, welcome to the program.

Julie: Hey, how are you doing?

Pastor Ross: Good.

Julie: How are you doing Doug Batchelor?

Pastor Doug: Doing great.

Julie: I'm very glad to hear you because I'm listening to you every Sunday and I also watch everything online and on TV, everything from you.

Pastor Doug: Oh bless your heart.

Julie: I’m very happy to see all the prophecy call when everything you have the TV, everything I’m very happy.

Doug: Well, you make sure and tune in, in about two weeks Pastor Ross and I will be in Orlando doing a new prophecy program, it will be live on the Internet and it's called prophecy encounter and that effect all you get to do is type in prophecy encounter.com. You'll see the website, you can watch on Facebook, everyone out there.

Pastor Ross: You Tube if you watch it live and you watch on Facebook and all kinds of things.

[crosstalk]

Pastor Doug: Yes, free it is.

Julie: Well, my question is that, when I used to go to church a lot of church I went to, it seems to me they were asking all the kinds of money. I wonder why the churches talk too much about money and I don't hear in your ministry talking about money, I never heard anything about talking about money and stuff like that, I say why is it?

Pastor Doug: Well, we do talk about money, we don't make it a priority. We believe the reason people give to churches and to ministries like Amazing Facts, is so we can use as much of the time as possible talking about the gospel and changing lives. Then at the end of the program, you'll notice it will say, "Hey if you want us to keep this program going because this program growing because this program--" a lot of churches, ministries they only exist because people donate.

Very few of them get some kind of corporate subsidy and it's important for God's word to continue that people give. But you and I know some churches don't manage the money well and some churches spend a lot of time begging for money and some pastors-- they live like kings and queens and they're going to give an account for that someday.

Pastor Ross and I, we get a salary it doesn't matter whether members in our church give 10 dollars or a million dollars, we just get a fair salary to pay our expenses and travel and so forth. We're in this not for the money we're in this to share the gospel and help people get to heaven.

Julie: Very clear.

Pastor Doug: We've got a full time job. Yes, good question you would also enjoy that study guide pastor Ross just offered called in God we trust.

Pastor Ross: The number to call for that is 800- 835- 6747, you can ask the study guide called in God we trust. Next caller is Joe and he's listening from New Jersey, Joe welcome to the program.

Joe: Oh that’s so good. I’ve been listening to you for a long time, I’ve just thought of something I’ve been wondering about for a long time. I've heard a lot of people believe Peter was the first Pope. I've also heard that he was crucified, and he requested to be crucified upside down because he didn't feel he was worthy to be crucified in the same manner as Jesus.

Pastor Doug: Now, that is not in the Bible but the reason-

Joe: I know that.

Pastor Doug: Yes. That's in there-- it's probably true but you're not going to find that in the Bible. I have read that in Fox's Book of Martyrs and some of the early fathers say that Peter when he was sentenced by Nero to be crucified he told the executioners, “I don't feel worthy to die like Jesus.” He said, “Please crucify me with my head down.” They accommodated him and he probably died even quicker because the blood rushes to the head you go unconscious. On the other question about Jesus being the first pope, that's really a myth that's been often repeated.

Jesus is never referred to as a pope, a matter of fact the chairman of the-- or rather Peter has never been referred to as a pope in the Bible. The chairman of the first board meetings there you have in Jerusalem was James the brother of Jesus. Though this, some could argue was it James? People often take that verse that you find in Matthew 16:18 where Jesus said, “I say to you your name is Peter and on this rock I’ll build my Church and the gates of Hades will not prevail against it.”

Peter just said, “Jesus you are the Messiah.” and Christ is saying "You're Peter," and that word there Peter is Petros but then he goes on and says, “But on this rock this Petra." The Petra is that declaration that Peter made, "Jesus you are the son of the Living God," that's in verse 16. He said, “I'm going to build my church.”

Jesus did not build his church on Peter. A few verses later you find where Jesus says that Peter and this is verse 23, Get behind me Satan, you're an offense to me." Why would Christ say to Peter, "You're the foundation on which the church is going to be built," and a few verses later he said, “Get behind me Satan?” That wouldn't make any sense. Peter was a great apostle but the church was not built on him and by the way Peter was married and none of the popes are married, there's a problem there too.

Hey listening friends you can tell from the music that we're running out of question time, do stay tuned a few more moments, we got some exciting announcements to share with you and I hope you go visit the prophecy Encounter website. Tune into this live series or we're getting ready to do from Sanford Florida, that's prophecyencounter.com. Also don't forget we're all in this station because people like you keep us there. Drop us a note at Amazing Facts and donate, thank you very much.

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