Oceans of Love

Date: 06/08/2008 
One of the greatest triumphs of endurance is held by Benoit Lecomte who swam across the Atlantic Ocean. On the 16th of July 1998, he set out from Cape Cod with 8 wet suits, a snorkel, and some flippers.
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Hello friends! This is Doug Batchelor. How about an amazing fact?

One of the greatest triumphs of endurance is held by Benoit Lecomte who swam across the Atlantic Ocean. On the 16th of July 1998, he set out from Cape Cod with 8 wet suits, a snorkel, and some flippers. He was guided across the ocean by two friend sailors on a 40-foot sailboat. The boat also suspended a large cage with an electronic force field over Benoit to protect him from sharks. He did, however, still encounter sea turtles, dolphins, and jellyfish. Lecomte swam 6 to 8 hours a day through 3,736 nautical miles of relentless waves. He stopped to rest for one week in the Azores islands. 72 days after beginning his epic trip, he swam ashore exhausted but heroic in France. Lecomte is now considering swimming across the Pacific Ocean to the Philippines. What would ever make a man swim across an ocean? Basically, love. You see, when Benoit’s father died of colon cancer in 1992, it spurred him to do something extraordinary to raise awareness and money for cancer research.

The Bible says someone else crossed an ocean of space for the same reason. Stay with us friends! We’re going to learn more as Amazing Facts brings you this edition of Bible Answers Live.

Pastor Jëan Ross: Welcome to Bible Answers Live brought to by Amazing Facts Ministries. Are you looking for a clear, concise answer to your most challenging Bible questions? Maybe you’re struggling to understand difficult passage of Scripture. If so, you’ve come to the right place. Join us now as we open God’s Word to discover His will and find honest, practical answers to your Bible-related questions. This broadcast is pre-recorded. If you have a Bible question, call us Sundays from 7 to 8 P.M. Pacific Standard Time at 800-GOD-SAYS; that’s 800-463-7297. Now, let’s join our host, author, speaker, and evangelist, Pastor Doug Batchelor.

Pastor Doug: This is Bible Answers Live and it’s a perfect program if you’ve got a Bible question. Is there some biblical conundrum, enigma, mystery that troubles you and you’d like to find out, “What does the Bible mean?” and “What does the Bible say?” We don’t have all the answers but here, we do have the Word of God and we’ll search together. If you’ve got a question, call right now. We’ve got lines open. And the number to call to get here in the studio is 800-GOD-SAYS; 800 463-7297. Right now is a good time to pick up your telephone and make that call with your question. You have a good chance of getting that question on tonight’s broadcast. As you can tell from the name, Bible Answers Live, this is a live, international, interactive Bible study. And of course, you can participate by calling in your question, by listening, by praying as we do our best to find and deliver the answers from the Word of God, and also you can even go to the Internet and you’ll find a lot of the resources there at the Amazing Facts website; that’s simply amazingfacts.org.

And once again, my name is Doug Batchelor. Pastor Jëan Ross is out of town still with a speaking appointment and he’ll be with us again next week. But we’re going to begin our broadcast, as we always do, with a word of prayer.

Loving Father in heaven, we’re very grateful for this opportunity and privilege to come before you and to just study to better understand what is truth and what does Your word say about truth. Lord, I pray that each person listening will be blessed and edified as a result of our program tonight. We ask in Jesus’ name. Amen.

Well, I was thinking about this amazing fact—Benoit Lecomte who swam across the Atlantic Ocean—that’s just almost inconceivable. And it made me think about a story in the Bible in Mark chapter 5 where Jesus crossed an ocean through a storm and He came to the Eastern Coast of Galilee and He saved one man and then returned; crossed this ocean, went through the storm to save one man. It also reminds me of the love of God that he would cross the trackless expanse of limitless space to come from heaven to this world to save us. That’s a lot love, friends! And the Bible says that if we love Him, we want to obey His command because we want to follow Him when we see how much God loved us and that He laid down His life to save us.

You know, we have a free offer for anybody who asks tonight. It’s a book that we don’t offer very often. Perhaps, you’re struggling with some of the basics of living the Christian life; it’s a book called, “Tips for Resisting Temptation.” This is very interesting reading and practical tips regarding, “How can I get the victory?” Maybe there’s some area in your life where you’re struggling and it’s affecting your witness for the Lord. Because you love the Lord, you want to be a better example. And if you’d like this free book, “Tips for Resisting Temptation,” we’ll be happy to send that to you. All you have to do is call the resource number and that number is 800-835-6747. And tell them you’re listening to Amazing Facts and they’ll make arrangements to send that to you.

We’ve got one question that is coming from the Internet and it’s regarding the gospel of John 5:25 through 28. Jesus is speaking and He says, “Verily, I say unto you, the hour is coming and now is when the dead shall hear the voice of the Son of God and they that hear shall live.”

Now, first of all, in the first part of this passage, Jesus having, is talking about those who are spiritually dead. Paul addresses those who are dead in trespasses and sins. And one time, someone wanted to follow Jesus but they said, “First, I need to bury my father.” And Jesus said, “Let the dead bury the dead.” So there’s a spiritual death. And when Christ came, those who heard His voice that listened and believed, they lived spiritually. But you go on in that verse, you go to verse 28, for instance, and it says, “Marvel not at this for the hour is coming in that which all that are in the graves will hear His voice and shall come forth. They that have done good, the resurrection of life; they that have done evil unto the resurrection of damnation.”

And so, there are two resurrections. The Bible speaks, “The dead in Christ,” 1 Thessalonians 4, those are the ones who’ve done good. The second resurrection is the resurrection of damnation spoken of in Revelation chapter 20. It says, “Blessed and holy are those that have part in the first resurrection, the dead and Christ.” The rest of the dead don’t live until a thousand years are finished—that’s the resurrection of the wicked. Everybody is going be resurrected. And all will be rewarded according to their works, the Bible tells us. So, hopefully that will help you a little bit regarding that one. Also… and we got a lot of other Bible questions and archives at the amazingfacts.org website. But we’re going to get right to the phones here. I’m going to talk with… let’s see, Max is calling on… from Brooklyn, New York, listening on WMCA. Welcome, Max, you’re on the air!

Max: Yes. Hi. Good evening, Pastor Doug.

Pastor Doug: Evening!

Max: Yes. I have a question. I was wondering, where do we find an explanation or how can we explain how did the stoning of Stephen fit into the 2,300-year prophecy?

Pastor Doug: Well, the stoning of Stephen fits more specifically into the 490-year prophecy. The 2,300-year prophecy, and for our friends listening, Max is referring to prophecies from Daniel chapter 8 and 9. In Daniel 9, it talks about the 490-year prophecy. It comes to an end with the stoning of Stephen. And so, it begins at 457 B.C. and it reaches to the stoning of Stephen. That was the time—3 ½ years after Christ ascended to heaven when the 1st martyr has died. He makes a wonderful, powerful spirit-filled gospel presentation to the Supreme Court of the Jewish nation and they respond by plugging their ears. They dragged him out of the city and they execute him—very much like what they did to Jesus.

Of course, then a great persecution arises. The apostles and disciples go everywhere. They fan out from Jerusalem preaching and they go largely to the Gentiles. A matter of fact, Paul was converted in the next chapter and becomes a disciple or apostle to the Gentiles. But that is not related specifically to the 2,300-year prophecy.

Max: Okay.

Pastor Doug: That’s… the stoning of Stephen really marks the end of the 490-year prophecy. Now, both of those—the 2,300 and the 490-year prophecy—have the same starting point. That’s the going forth of the commandment to restore and build Jerusalem.

Max: Okay, got you. Okay.

Pastor Doug: Alright. And you know, we have... you know, I don’t know what I was thinking… for you and anybody else who would like one, we’ve got a Bible study that specifically talks about that prophecy. And if you’d like a copy of that, it’s called, “God Sets a Date for the Judgment.” Oh, wait a second, that’s the old title. It’s called, “Right On Time…”

Max: Okay.

Pastor Doug: “…Prophetic Appointments Revealed Right On Time.”

Max: Okay.

Pastor Doug: If you don’t have that, just call our resource number and we’ll send that to you. That number is 800, Max, 835-6747. And I appreciate your question. I hope that helps fill in the blanks. Talking next to James who is calling us from Lauderdale, Florida. Welcome to the program, James!

James: Hello, Pastor Batchelor. How are you?

Pastor Doug: Good. I grew up not too far away from you.

James: Oh, awesome! Great. Hey, listen, my question comes from 1 Timothy 3:8 where it says, “Likewise must the deacons be grave, not double-tongued, not given to much wine, not greedy or filthy or lucre.” Now, I know in the Greek, the word the wine is “oenos” and it can either represent the drug alcohol or grape juice. But also in Titus chapter 2 and 3, it says that “each women, likewise that they be in behavior as becoming holiness, not false accusers, not given to much wine, teachers of good things.” In the Hebrew-Greek concordance, in Titus chapter 2 and 3 that makes reference to the drug alcohol. Now, since chapter 3:8 in Timothy, it’s pretty much the same Scripture. I’m assuming wouldn’t that be making reference to the drug alcohol and not grape juice?

Pastor Doug: You know, I believe that the references of Paul to wine, he’s principally thinking of grape juice. Now, let me explain something that will help put you in the mindset of where he’s writing from. Now, if we go to a convenience store, they will often sell grape juice and they will sell wine. If they got an alcohol license, or at least a supermarket will, and you can look on the wine bottle—I used to drink wine. I haven’t had wine in 25 or something years, I forget; it’s been a long time—it’ll say what the alcohol content is—10 proof, 12 proof, whatever, 15 proof. It will say that on a grape juice.

In the Bible, they put grape juice in wine skins. When it was first put in, it was called “new wine.” It tended to slowly deteriorate from there unless they did some things to prevent fermentation. Sometimes, they would dehydrate a little a bit, make more of a syrup and then reconstitute it or they drink it when it was fresh. That was called the “best wine.” The Christians in the New Testament did not endorse drinking of wine. They knew that if you drank grape juice that had been in the skin too long, it would have a little alcohol content. And as the older it got, the longer time, the more the content. You know what I’m saying? So…

James: Which is… well…

Pastor Doug: Well, anyway, go ahead. You were going to say?

James: Well, I agree with that. But what I was looking at is in Titus…

Pastor Doug: “The older women, likewise that they be reverent in behavior…”

James: Right…

Pastor Doug: “…not slanderous and not given to much wine?”

James: Right. And when I looked that up in Hebrew-Greek concordance, it made reference to the drug alcohol. The way… and I could be wrong in my understanding. I believed that Paul, when he wrote to Timothy and he was making reference to deacons, the way I first took it was what he was saying the drinking of alcohol, in a sense, would be the… the slavery, I’m sorry, to alcohol would be the exception and not the rule. In a sense, I’m saying since they newly established the church, I believe it was in Greek. I believe Paul was saying, “Okay, you know, pretty much since you all are accustomed to drinking wine in the Middle East, don’t be given to much wine because, you know, when we come to Christ, we come as we are.” Of course, God does not want us to stay in a position that we came in. But, I mean, you know…

Pastor Doug: Are you wondering… let me just zero in on the real issue, I think. Are you wondering if it’s okay for Christians to drink a little wine?

James: No, no. Not at all. I’m completely convicted that no one should drink the alcohol. No one, I mean, the drug alcohol. But I just really… well, really the question come from you wrote a book about Christians and alcohol.

Pastor Doug: Right.

James: And when I was studying it, you made reference to it being grape juice. But then, when I was looking at it in the Hebrew-Greek concordance, it kind of seem to kind of disagree.

Pastor Doug: Well…

James: So that’s when I… sorry, go ahead.

Pastor Doug: Yeah. Titus… what you just quoted there in Titus and Timothy, they’re both Greek.

James: Right.

Pastor Doug: And I believe the word there is interchangeable.

James: Okay.

Pastor Doug: Between the wine is… could be fermented. It could be the unfermented, the new wine.

James: Correct. Correct. I agree.

Pastor Doug: And it’s a context. I don’t believe that Paul is endorsing drinking any kind of fermented alcohol because then you’ve got those other verses that say, “Wine is a mocker. Strong drink is raging.”

James: Strong drink is raging. Right.

Pastor Doug: And then, you know, the bottom line is just… well, you’ve read the book, you know. Look what it does to our society. It’s the most destructive drug more than all the other drugs combined. Alcohol does more damage.

James: Right.

Pastor Doug: And so, Christians should not engage in that in any part. Results are the most addictive. I mean, you know, a lot more people are alcoholics or addicted to cracks or speed or anything else.

James: Right.

Pastor Doug: Well, I hope that helps, James. We’re going to try and get a couple more callers and if… I was going to offer you the book but it sounds like you got the book. Appreciate your call. Talking next to Chris who’s calling from Salinas, California, listening on KARM. Welcome, Chris!

Chris: Hi.

Pastor Doug: Hi, how can we help you?

Chris: I was wondering, how do I appropriate the healing of God? Because I have a stomach problem and like I have Strep Throat and a cold. I was wondering how you can best appropriate the healing of God. What kind of prayer, whatever that’s appropriate biblically the healing of God?

Pastor Doug: Alright. Well, the first things you want to do is, in the Bible, use the practical means that God gives you. In other words, do things that you know are just good common sense to help heal. And I’m not a doctor, but of course…

Chris: Yeah.

Pastor Doug: …a good diet, drinking water, or getting rest. There’s nothing wrong with going to a doctor. But at the same time, you know, pray to God He’ll heal you. Also, when you’re praying for healing, say, “Lord, if there’s anything in my life that is out of harmony with Your will, please show that to me.” And then you’ve got the example there in James chapter 5 where it says, “If someone’s sick, let them call for the elders of the church to pray over them, anointing them with oil. And the prayer of faith will save the sick. And so, the sick can be healed. I believe in divine healing. I also believe we need to use the practical means that God has given us. Sometimes, healing comes just with things run their course. And you know, I’ve had a few colds in my life and I prayed God would heal me. And sometimes He’d accelerate the healing, but oftentimes, it’s just nature taking its course and your body putting up its own natural defenses.

So, all of those things together, pray that you can do what you can do and that God will work miracles and facilitate healing, Chris.

Chris: Yeah. I… it’s hard to get your station on. I’m from Salinas.

Pastor Doug: Yeah. I’m glad that you are able to tune in.

Chris: Well, I’m tuning in through the phone but it’s hard to get on the radio.

Pastor Doug: Yeah. Well, you know…

Chris: I had to go home so I have numbers on my radio at home. But here, I have dialed to [inaudible 00:17:48] numbers. It shows numbers in… one in Santa Cruz where I used to live. I’m just here to see my mom.

Pastor Doug: Well, we’re glad that you tuned in and that must mean that you’re listening on other times in other places. We appreciate that. Thanks for your call, Chris. And hopefully, that will help you a little bit. We pray that you do get healed. Talking next to Mark who’s listening on WMCA from New York, New York. Welcome, Mark. You’re on the air with Bible Answers Live.

Mark: Thank you, Pastor Doug. My question is I think I have a problem trying to reconcile divine foreknowledge with human free will. It seems that one precludes the other. What’s your take on that?

Pastor Doug: Well, the question is, do we have a free will? And you know, do we have a choice? I believe the Bible’s very clear that because God knows what’s going to happen doesn’t mean that we don’t have a choice. He just knows what our choice is going to be. God knows everything from eternity in the future to eternity in the past—nothing hidden from Him. He’s all-knowing.

Mark: Right. In other words, if…

Pastor Doug: But that doesn’t mean we don’t have a choice.

Mark: I’d say, next week, God knows what I’m going to have for breakfast next Monday.

Pastor Doug: Yeah.

Mark: Say, He knows I’m going to have bacon and eggs. That means I have to have bacon and eggs. I can’t choose to have anything else because God knows ahead of time that I’m going to have that for breakfast.

Pastor Doug: Well, you’re… if you don’t mind my saying, so I think what you’re doing is you’re using reverse logic. God knows what you’re going to choose. But that doesn’t mean that you don’t have a choice. For instance, the Lord prophesied that the people of Nineveh would be destroyed in 40 days. Jonah went into the city, and said, “In 40 days the city’s going to be destroyed.” Well, the people repented. And God didn’t say, “Look, they’ve chosen to repent at this warning. And I’m going to postpone My judgment.”

Mark: But God knew they were going to repent.

Pastor Doug: Exactly. But do they have a choice?

Mark: I don’t know, it seems to me that they didn’t. Maybe I’m looking at it the wrong way.

Pastor Doug: If you think about it… well, think about it. Does God give us the ability to choose?

Mark: That’s what I’m trying to figure out.

Pastor Doug: Well, just look at the verses in the Bible. When God said, “Choose ye this day who you will serve.” Doesn’t that mean you have a choice? When Christ says, “Whoever will,” that means you get to use your will. “Whosoever will, let him come and take the water of life. So, when the Lord invites people to do something, He’s asking them to use their brains and make decisions and to choose because He knows what their choice is. It doesn’t mean they don’t have it.

Mark: Yeah, I can’t seem to reconcile… reconcile that in my own mind.

Pastor Doug: Well, there’s a difference between God making something happen and knowing what’s going to happen. I use this illustration sometimes. You get a helicopter or somebody’s up there in a satellite, Google Earth. They’re looking down at earth and they’re seeing in real-time, a traffic accident about to happen. They can see that when this Volkswagen comes up the hill into a tunnel on one side of a mountain and this truck is in the wrong lane going on the other side of the mountain, they know there’s going to be a crash in the tunnel. It’s the people in the cars that make crash happen. But the fella in the satellite or the helicopter, he can see it before it happens. He knows what’s going to happen. He’s not making it happen. He just knows it in advance.

Mark: I see that. Well, he doesn’t really know with a 100% certainty but with just a very high degree of certainty and that’s…

Pastor Doug: Well, but that’s the difference. It’s God’s knowledge is perfect but it still doesn’t mean that we don’t have a choice.

Mark: Right.

Pastor Doug: Otherwise, my bottom line is, why does God invite us to choose if we don’t have a choice?

Mark: Right, right. That’s what Scripture says, I guess.

Pastor Doug: Yeah, of course.

Mark: Yeah.

Pastor Doug: You know, all through the Bible, appeals are made for people to choose.

Mark: Yeah, I read something by, I guess, a discourse between Erasmus and Martin Luther.

Pastor Doug: Of talking about free will and predestination.

Mark: Yeah. That seem that…

Pastor Doug: Oh yeah. That’ll really make your brain explode. Those guys had pretty good minds.

Mark: Yeah, so according to Martin Luther, we, you know, we’re predestined. God is 100% sovereign. No… He has full foreknowledge…

Pastor Doug: And Erasmus believes in… that we have free choice.

Mark: That’s right.

Pastor Doug: As did John Wesley. So, you know, there’s… of course, the predestination, Calvin was the real champion of that but I just think that if you go through history until you get to Calvin, virtually, all of the great church fathers believe that we… the Holy Spirit guides us and leads us but we get to choose. That’s how a person grieves. Why would God say, “Do not grieve the Holy Spirit if we couldn’t choose to grieve it or not to grieve it? All through the Bible, appeals were made…

Mark: That was Erasmus’ argument.

Pastor Doug: Yeah. Well, hey I’m in good company then. [Laughing] I appreciate your question very much, Mark. And you know, we do have a book. I’ll send you a copy. I’m trusting you’re still listening there. It’s called, “Can a Saved Man Choose to be Lost?” “Can a Saved Man Choose to be Lost?” And that’s a classic. If you’d like a free copy, just call 800-835-6747. We’ll send one to you for, not only free, but 50% off free. And I appreciate your question, Mark.

Talking to Joanna who’s calling from the Internet, Newton, Tennessee. Welcome, Joanna, you’re on the air! Did I say your name right?

Johanna: Yes, Johanna.

Pastor Doug: Okay, and your question?

Johanna: My question is in Genesis where Joseph talks to his brothers and says to them like, “You are spies,” and over there where it says that they took two silver cups and everything.

Pastor Doug: Right.

Johanna: Was that lying? Because the Bible tells us not to lie. How did God justify that?

Pastor Doug: Well, keep in mind, everything that you see in the Bible doesn’t mean God justifies it. The Bible reports that David took a man’s wife and then had the man killed. That doesn’t mean God endorsed that or that He wanted that. Joseph was also human. Nowhere in the Bible does it say Joseph was perfect or sinless. Joseph did use deception. And the reason he was doing that—and I’m not saying it was right—I’m just saying the reason he did it, he wanted to see if his brothers had changed. He wanted to see if they were treating Benjamin the way that they had treated him because Benjamin was his little brother. So he puts them through a series of tests to see if they were different. He knew that in order to test them, he would have to cloak who he was.

Now, you know, Jesus, in a sense, did that when He came to earth. God became a man. God hid who He was in the veil of humanity. It’s not that He was deceiving us. It’s the only way we could handle looking at God and learning about God was when God became a man.

Johanna: Yeah.

Pastor Doug: So, there’s some symbolism there in what Joseph did. It’s very powerful. But you’re right. He did use some deception there and mislead his brothers in order to test them.

Johanna: And does that mean that it’s okay for us to lie or?

Pastor Doug: No.

Johanna: No.

Pastor Doug: No, you’ll find in the Bible where King David pretended he was crazy one time because he was afraid and where Joshua pretended they were retreating from the city of Ai and they weren’t really retreating. They were just pretending so they could draw the army out. Many times, God’s people, you know, they did things that were deceptive or dishonest or misleading. And God records it but it doesn’t mean He approved of it.

Johanna: Okay.

Pastor Doug: So, the Bible’s a history book as well as everything else.

Johanna: Okay, thank you.

Pastor Doug: Alright! Good question, I appreciate that. How much time do we got before our break here? Assuming I can maybe do one more question here. By the way that opened up a bunch of lions, friends. We’ve been just plowing through the questions. If you had a Bible question tonight, pick up the phone now. Maybe something you’ve heard or read stirred your mind. 800-GOD-SAYS brings you to the studio; that’s 800-463-7297. Talking next to Anita who’s calling from Fort Myers, Florida. Welcome, Anita, you’re on the air!

Anita: Hello, Pastor Doug.

Pastor Doug: Hi. We got about 2 minutes before the break so I want to try and squeeze your question in.

Anita: Okay, I’ll be fast. How could pride enter Lucifer’s heart in a perfect heaven?

Pastor Doug: You know, that is what they call the mystery of iniquity in the Bible. Someone called a few moments ago, I don’t know if you were listening, and they asked about free will. Some of the greatest evidence that God’s intelligent creatures—and the angels are intelligent creatures—that they have free will is Lucifer. God cannot make us love Him. If He forces us to love Him, it’s not love. A person must choose to love. And Lucifer began to be jealous. He stared loving himself more. He chose to love himself more. And he began to be jealous of Christ and His position with the Father and His power. And he wanted to be God. And that’s, of course, in Isaiah chapter 14, Isaiah… I’m sorry, Ezekiel 28 talks about that.

Anita: Could that mystery of iniquity happen again when the same soul get to heaven?

Pastor Doug: You know, it could but it won’t. And the reason I say that is there’s a promise in the book of Nahum and it says, “Iniquity will not rise up the second time. The scars in the hands of Jesus will forever be a warning sign from anybody to doubt God’s love and to rebel against Him. So the Lod tells us that this terrible experiment with sin that Lucifer launched off into is never going to repeat itself because no one, from now on, will ever doubt the justice and love of God. That’s why Paul says at the very end, after the great judgment, “Every knee will bow, every tongue will confess that Jesus is Lord. Everyone will confess that God is just.”

So, you know, Anita, before the music chases us away, I wanted to let you know that there is a lesson that we’ll be happy to send you that deals with this. It’s called, “Did God Create a Devil?” If you call the resource number and ask for “Did God Create the Devil?” we’ll send you a free copy. Appreciate your call.

Listening friends, we’re not going away. We’re just taking a break. Coming back, we’ve got a number of questions that are lined up. Lisa and others that are waiting, just standby. We’ll get to your questions. Also, I want to remind you that we have a new website… oh, I just looked in my computer and there it is! It’s called amazingfacts.tv. Right now, I’m staring at a program that’s on right now. If you go to simply amazingfacts.tv; amazingfacts.tv—24 hours a day, 7 days a week. You can watch a broad spectrum of Amazing Facts DVDs and radio programs. And you can also donate… or donate [laughing]. You can download some of your favorites. We’ll be right back, friends!


Pastor Jëan Ross: Welcome back to Bible Answers Live with Pastor Doug Batchelor. This broadcast is pre-recorded. If you have a Bible-related question, you can call us from 7 to 8 P.M. Pacific Standard Time on Sundays and receive clear, honest answers directly from Scripture. Call 800-GOD-SAYS; that’s 800-463-7297. Now, please join us as we look to God’s Word for more Bible answers live with author and evangelist, Pastor Doug Batchelor.

Pastor Doug: We are back and we are live. If you have a Bible question, that number to get your question on the air is 800-463-7297. And without further ado, we’re going to go right back to the phones and going to see if we can get in as many questions as possible. Talking now with Melissa who is listening on the Internet from Phoenix, Arizona. Welcome, Melissa, you’re on the air!

Melissa: Hi, Pastor Doug. Thanks for taking my call.

Pastor Doug: Now, before we go to your question, you know, I’m going to be in Phoenix in two weeks.

Melissa: I know. I’m very excited.

Doug: Oh, okay. You’re going to try and make it to that Christian camp meeting.

Melissa: Definitely!

Pastor Doug: Wonderful! And your question?

Melissa: Well, basically, as I told you’re staying there as screen caller, my son, we recently… I’m very upset about this. I apologize that they can’t get to fallout without crying but we recently found out that he’s still making out some inappropriate websites and he’s homeschooled. We do our very best to keep him sheltered from, you know, specific types of movies and things to that nature. And my question is, you know, how does the Bible or what does the Bible say about trying to help a child to get back to understanding a pure way of looking at a relationship between a man and a woman or just not not even thinking about those things at such an early age?

Pastor Doug: How old is this young person?

Melissa: He’s 10 ½, he’ll be 11 soon and, you know…

Pastor Doug: Well, if you ran into some of the obscene things that is some pretty dark stuff out there…

Melissa: Right.

Pastor Doug: …it would be good for mom and… is there a dad in the home?

Melissa: Yes.

Pastor Doug: To sit down with them, it might be less intimidating of just dad sits down with him and have a preliminary conversation about the birds and the bees, and that… you know, the devil takes every beautiful thing that God makes and he perverts it. And the devil can take beautiful things and wonderful things and that are okay within, you know, God’s blessing and he twists them and he makes them ugly and abuses them. And, you know, just trying to encourage the young man not to have his idea about those things defined by the devil but by mom and dad. So, you know, dad’s going to have to probably try to counteract that influence by telling them, you know, what is going on and what it’s for and, you know what I’m saying? And then another thing, just yesterday, it’s interesting you would call.

I had lunch with someone who is involved with Internet security for the US government. And we’re talking about the prejudice on the Internet and he’s written up some material we’d like to put out as a book for parents on how to, you know, guard and even restore the purity of your children because of the Internet issues. And this person was saying the best thing to do when… if you’ve got kids in your house even with all the software they have that supposedly screens things, he said none of it is full proof. Best thing is just don’t let them on the Internet unless you’re in the room with them. That makes a world of difference. And if you’re going to be out of the room then, yeah, you put the computer on sleep and you have a code that only mom and dad know. But…

Melissa: Definitely and unfortunately, running that the hard way. But I just, I guess I wondered now that the damage is done, are there any specific Scriptures that he can, you know, try to memorize and rely on when he’s feeling weak and, you know…

Pastor Doug: “Blessed are the pure in heart. They will see God,” Matthew chapter 5. You know, Jesus says He wants us to be pure in heart and that means pure in mind and He won’t be happy by going after the impure things. “Blessed” means happy. He’ll be happy by focusing on the pure things. There’s quite a few, you know, if you’ve got a computer program or the Bible, just type in the word “purity” and you’re going to see a whole plethora of Scriptures pop up on that. I did a whole sermon on purity. A matter of fact, if… when it seem too opportunistic, if you go to the Amazing Facts website, I’ve got an article I wrote called, “Power and Purity,” and a number of promises right there. It’s, you know, of course, amazingfacts.org and if you search the word “purity,” there’s an article I’ve written on that.

Melissa: Okay.

Pastor Doug: Are you there Melissa?

Melissa: Yes. Thank you very much.

Pastor Doug: Alright. And we’ll be praying for you. I know that’s extremely troubling to have that kind of revelation of what’s going on. Bless your heart. I appreciate your question. Going to talk next with Tamm who’s calling from Bridgeport, Connecticut on WMCA. Welcome, Tammy, you’re on the air!

Tammy: Thank you so much for taking my call, Doug. How are you?

Pastor Doug: Very well! How are you?

Tammy: Good. My question for you tonight is I read in the Bible that it says that, you know, if you’re Christian, then you know, you’re saved from sin and you’re no longer a sinner although you sin. So, my question for you is, if a saved person commits suicide that obviously is a sin, but is that person condemned to hell because of that sin?

Pastor Doug: Ooh! That’s a big question. Well, first of all, typically saved people don’t commit suicide. Now, I’ve said “typically.”

Tammy: Right.

Pastor Doug: There are people who are Christians and because of some, you know, chemical imbalance that, you know, only God or maybe the doctor knows about or you know, some people are just overwhelmed with depression because of maybe a terminal disease. They may make a decision that is totally out of character. But in most situations—and I’m being careful because there are exceptions—in most situations, if a person’s last act of their life is self-murder, you know, the Bible says, “Thou shalt not kill,” and that really translates “Thou shalt not murder,” and that would certainly include don’t murder yourself. And so, you know, I would think that their future would be… I’d be troubled about the future if the last act of a person’s life is self-murder.

Tammy: Right. Because essentially, what Jesus tells us is, you know, “I’ll never give you anything more than you can bear.” And by committing suicide, that’s going against, obviously, what He says—you know, if you commit suicide. So that was a little unclear to me. It’s in fact, you know, someone is saved and then there may be a situation that causes them to commit suicide, you know, whether something comes up in their household where they kind of suicidal, they need to take their life, whether or not…

Pastor Doug: Well, if you think about it, Tammy, in most cases, I heard someone explain to me one time that suicide is actually a very selfish act because almost always, there’s family and friends left behind that are devastated trying to unravel what happed. And their collective pain is usually a lot greater than the pain of the person. Now, you know, sometimes a person, like you said, has got unbearable physical suffering from some terminal illness or something like that. Sometimes a person is about to die—like Samson was a suicide—you ever thought about that?

Tammy: No, I haven’t, actually.

Pastor Doug: Well, Samson, you know, he was probably about to be executed. We can only speculate but we’re guessing the Philistines brought him into the temple of Dagon to make sport of him and then execute him.

Tammy: Right, right.

Pastor Doug: To please their gods. And Samson, knowing that was coming, he thought, “Well, I’m going to beat them to it.” And he brought the house down, so to speak, on his enemies. But he laid his life down. It was a sacrifice but he really killed himself.

Tammy: Right.

Pastor Doug: In a sense, Jesus—now be careful—but Jesus said, “I lay My life down.” Nobody could have killed God if He didn’t allow it to happen.

Tammy: Exactly.

Pastor Doug: So, you know, there are exceptions where a person will sacrifice themselves. You know, sometimes soldiers, during the war, someone throws a hand grenade into a group of soldiers and one of them jumps on it. Well, you could argue that’s a suicide. He knew he’d die.

Tammy: That’s right.

Pastor Doug: He could’ve run away from it but he laid his life down to save others. But in most cases, suicides—people say, “You know, I’m very discouraged about my circumstances. I’m just getting out of here.” And they’re really thinking about themselves. Sometimes they leave kids behind and family. They’re just devastated for life.

Tammy: Right.

Pastor Doug: So, I would… you know, I think it’s highly suspected if someone who’s a professed Christian does that. And I would say to anybody who’s listening—Christian or otherwise—if the last act of your life is committing suicide because you’re thinking you’re going to improve your circumstances, if a person dies lost, their next conscious thought is not an improvement of their circumstances. See what I’m saying?

Tammy: I do. I do.

Pastor Doug: So, I would just say anybody who’s tampering with the idea of suicide, put it out of your mind. It’s never a solution.

Tammy: Okay, great!

Pastor Doug: Yeah, appreciate your question very much, Tammy. And you know, you’d find I think a lot of comfort in just information also in the Amazing Facts Bible study course. If you’d like to get a free enrollment in that, just go to the Amazing Facts website. That’s amazingfacts.org and click there and sign up for it—the Amazing Facts Bible study course. Talking next with Bernard from Brooklyn, New York. Let me make sure I press the right button. Bernard, you’re on the air with Pastor Doug!

Bernard: Hello!

Pastor Doug: Hi, welcome!

Bernard: Hi. I’m going to lower my radio, okay?

Pastor Doug: Okay, that’s a good idea. Sometimes that can be confusing. Hopefully your radio is not far away?

Bernard: Okay, Pastor Doug?

Pastor Doug: Oh yeah. Okay. Yes!

Bernard: Yes! I have a question in regards to cremation. If someone who is born again, you know, Christian—true Christian—and they passed away and they are cremated because it says in Scripture that—I believe in Revelation—that the graves will be opened up and they will be risen from the grave. You know, if they’re cremated, they won’t be rising from a grave. Does that eliminate that person? And it sound like a silly question, but does that eliminate them because they were…

Pastor Doug: No, I don’t think so. You know, in the Bible typically, when a believer died, they were buried.

Bernard: Right.

Pastor Doug: But there are some examples like Jonathan was burnt. You know, his body was mutilated by the Philistines and then he was rescued or the remains were rescued by the people of Jaboth-Gilead…

Bernard: Okay.

Pastor Doug: …and they burned them. We expect to see Jonathan in heaven. Many of the murders of the Dark Ages were burnt by the persecuting powers. And they…

Bernard: Okay

Pastor Doug: …thought, “You know, if we burn them and scatter their ashes, then they can’t be resurrected.” And there’s nothing in the Bible that says that because God tells us these old bodies aren’t going to get the kingdom of heaven. At the resurrection…

Bernard: Right.

Pastor Doug: …God has new bodies.

Bernard: Right.

Pastor Doug: So, if a person’s buried, their body decomposes and turns back to dust and ashes, right?

Bernard: Right.

Pastor Doug: If they’re cremated, it just sort of accelerates the same process.

Bernard: Okay.

Pastor Doug: So the idea that God has to find the old pieces to resurrect them is really a myth. There’s nothing that says, you know, God can’t resurrect you unless He gets enough of the old parts together.

Bernard: Okay. Now, that’s very comforting to hear from you because I have a loved one—my mother actually—who’s very ill and eventually, I know that she will be with the Lord and I would know she would want a burial service but not necessarily she would be… how would you say, lain in the ground?

Pastor Doug: Right.

Bernard: You know, one of her things that she…

Pastor Doug: So she wants to be cremated?

Bernard: Probably, you know, that’s still what she would want it. But I know she will accepted the Lord 8 years ago, you know, and… so, I know that she’s a Christian and I know she’ll be with the Lord but I don’t want…

Pastor Doug: Well, if that’s the decision, you know… and more and more people are doing that today because it just… it’s so expensive. I heard that to bury someone in Forest Lawn cemetery, you could pay $800,000 for one plot—there’s an amazing fact for you. So it does get expensive and a lot of people are turning to cremation. I’ll probably be buried if that day comes before the Lord comes.

Bernard: Right.

Pastor Doug: But I think there’s nothing in the Bible that says, “Thou shalt not be cremated.”

Bernard: But what about the point right there and Scripture says, “They’ve risen from the grave. The grave shall open up?”

Pastor Doug: Well, it also, in the same sections, it talks about in Revelation about the souls of all those who are in the sea. So some people in the sea—well, they’re not in one place, you know…

Bernard: Right.

Pastor Doug: …so they’re often scattered ashes or, you know, I don’t want to go into detail but when a person’s buried at sea, their bodies are pretty much disintegrated by the elements and the fish.

Bernard: Right.

Pastor Doug: None of the Titanic victims were found.

Bernard: Right.

Pastor Doug: They found the Titanic and they found some of the leftovers but no people.

Bernard: Right. And people who die and say, terrorist attacks or anything.

Pastor Doug: Oh, yeah. All kinds of things.

Bernard: Right. Thank you.

Pastor Doug: So that… you know, those things don’t prevent God from resurrecting because He makes a new body, even the people who are alive when Jesus comes. It says, “They’re transformed in the twinkling of an eye. This corruptible puts on incorruption.” That’s in 1 Corinthians 15.

Bernard: Can you give me a Scripture also, and thank you very much, about that you say the Philistines that some of the murders were…

Pastor Doug: Oh, you’ll find that like 2 Samuel chapter 21. If you look that up, read that chapter there and I think you’ll find it where they took the bones of Jonathan and Saul and they burned them. So…

Bernard: Okay!

Pastor Doug: Alright?

Bernard: Thank you very much.

Pastor Doug: Alright. You take care, Bernard. Alright, going to talk next with James who’s calling from KPRZ in San Diego. Welcome, James, you’re on the air!

James: Yes, Pastors. Thank you for taking my call. My question is that I struggle with trusting and I’ve been through a very tough childhood and so forth. And I’m having a tough time trusting my fiancée and I feel that she could be cheating on me. And I know there’s a Scripture stating with prayer and supplication, let your request be known to God.

Pastor Doug: Yeah.

Bernard: She agreed to get a lie detector test to prove to me that I have nothing to worry about, that she is not seeing anyone else and I’m just wondering if, is that wrong for me or… to do that? Is that taking it out of God’s hands? Am I being… am I out of His will?

Pastor Doug: Well, you know, I would think… now, you know, what I’m not good at is the marriage counseling part of the program here. But I do want to just diverge a little bit from just giving you a list of Scriptures to talking about another issue which is trust. You’re better off, I would think, trusting and being wrong than having your… is this your wife or fiancée?

James: Fiancée.

Pastor Doug: Than asking her to take a lie detector test. Now, if you know, if your relationship is such now that you’re doubtful about her loyalty, you’re probably out to be dating someone else. If you’re dating someone’s that got to take a lie detector test, my first reaction would be you’re either dating the wrong person or she’s dating the wrong person. Depends on whether you’re just hyper-jealous or weather there’s real evidence. I don’t know that answer. But I know, as a Pastor, if I knew a couple that were not married but they’re thinking about it and they’re having to get one to take a lie detector test, I’d say they’re not matched well.

James: Yeah, because you know, we’re going through some tough times right now and being, you know, time apart and so forth, there’s… I don’t know, there’s that uncertainty. I know that there’s a lot of things in life that sometimes cannot, you know, bombards your mind and get you unfocused. And you don’t know where it’s coming from but it’s hard to pinpoint sometimes if you’re just, you know, being over…

Pastor Doug: Yeah, if you’re being too sensitive. Well, you know, as far as the Bible goes, you want to be able to trust somebody and you did go to Scripture there in Philippians—to be anxious for nothing but in everything with prayer and supplication, let your request be made known to God—and so just, you know, lay this out before Lord. And I’d lay the whole, you know, dating issue about this person and everything before the Lord. But you’ve got to have trust in relationship. You know, there’s a lesson that I’d like to recommend for you, James, and it’s “Keys to a Happy Marriage.” I think it would be perfect for you. If you… and you know, if your fiancée would like to read it, too. But it’s got great Bible principles on the marriage relationship and if you just go to your telephone, call 800-835-6747. Ask for a copy of the study guide called, “Keys to a Happy Marriage.” We’ll send that to you for free and hopefully that will help you a little bit.

Okay. We’re going to talk to someone in Honolulu, Hawaii. Christian is calling, listening on the Internet. Welcome, Christian, you’re on the air!

Christian: Hi! This is… Cristiano is my name. Cristiano.

Pastor Doug: Oh, I’m sorry. Cristiano, welcome!

Cristiano: No problem. Yes sir. Thank you for having me. I was looking through the Bible and I was looking at the 7 deadly sins. And my question is about the wrath of God thinking thedeadly sins for us who are mortal sinners, living souls—temporary living souls—now, I know that God is a Spirit and He calls the shots. But isn’t it contradictory to His loving nature for Him to have wrath and for us not to have wrath?

Pastor Doug: Well, the wrath of God is done in love. God is love. Nothing that God does is unloving and even the justice…

Cristiano: …in the creation of love, it have a creation of love?

Pastor Doug: Well, let me just finish this off real quick.

Cristiano: Yes.

Pastor Doug: When a parent has to punish their children, from the child’s perspective, it might look like wrath. If it’s a loving parent, the parent is really doing what they’re doing because they want to save their children. And so, that punishment, that fierceness might be to save them. When our children were little, if they wandered off the sidewalk into the street, we told them never go into the street. There might be what they thought was wrath But it’s done in love. You see what I’m saying?

Cristiano: So we are forced to live like…

Pastor Doug: …all of the wrath of God is coming from love. But not all human wrath is loving. Sometimes it’s very selfish. It’s almost demon possession. So it’s the same word but they’re different motives.

Cristiano: I see. I see your point now. Now, if I can just elaborate on this. So well, we know according to the Bible, Lord Jesus Christ talk more about the hearing the gospel than about heaven. It’s… did the Lord Jesus Christ conquered hell as well among with death and the sting of death, which it seems the sting of death, I assume, is sin. Did also Lord Jesus Christ conquered hell as well?

Pastor Doug: Yes, He did! You read that Revelation that He has the keys of death and hell. And if you read in Revelation chapter 20, it tells us that death and hell is revelation—this is Revelation 20:14—death and hell were cast into the Lake of Fire. This is the second death.

Chistiano: This Lake of Fire is separate thing from the hell?

Pastor Doug: Well, no. The Lake of Fire is typically what you think of as hell. But when you also read in Revelation 21, it tells us, “And I saw a new heaven and a new earth. The first heaven and earth were pass away. There’s no more sea.” And it goes on to say that “There’s no more death,” this is verse 4, “neither sorrow nor crying; neither shall there be any more pain.” Now, what typically happens in hell?

Cristiano: Torment.

Pastor Doug: Yeah. So, here itsays that Godis even going to defeat that. No more pain!

Cristiano: I see.

Pastor Doug: Have you ever seen…

Cristiano: It’s out of love. Again, it’s out of love?

Pastor Doug: Yes. Everything God does is love. You know, there’s a lot of misunderstandings about the doctrine of hell. The Bible tells us, there is a Lake of Fire where the wicked are punished and consumed. But it doesn’t…

Cristiano: Is Gehenna the same thing, sir? Gehenna is the same thing or the bottomless pit or, how would you elaborate on that?

Pastor Doug: Yeah. Well, Gehenna is the same thing as what Jesus calls “hell.” These 4 words that Jesus used for hell—one is Gehenna; one is Tartarus; one is dealing with Hades; and then there is a Sheol which is an Old Testament word actually—and they… typically, they mean the grave but Hades is sometimes translated to talk about the place where the wicked are punished. You know what I’d like to do in order to give some other people a chance for a question tonight, Christian… Cristiano, I want to recommend that you read our lesson of “Is the Devil In Charge of Hell?” We will send you a free copy, “Is the Devil In Charge of Hell?” And all the things you’re asking are right there.

Anybody who has questions about the love of God and the justice of God, go to… you can call 800-835-6747, and ask for “Is the Devil In Charge of Hell?” or go to the Amazing Facts website; amazingfacts.org. And I’m going to be talking next to… let’s see, I’m just double-checking with the studio. Okay, talking to Claude who’s calling from Miami, Florida. Welcome to the program, Claude!

Claude: Hey. Hi, how are you doing?

Pastor Doug: Very well!

Claude: Yes. My question is as I’m looking in the events that’s going on in the world right now, can you possibly say that we are living at the tip… at the end of time, right now?

Pastor Doug: Well, it sure looks that way. I’ll tell you, when you think about the indicators of natural disasters, Jesus says there’ll be earthquakes in different places. Well, I don’t know if the numbers are in but last I heard, 60-65,000 people just died in China from an earthquake. They had…

Claude: Yes. A matter of fact, there’s one today…

Pastor Doug: And in Greece, they had an earthquake today. Though the casualties were low, they’ve been several around the world. The Bible says there’d be war and rumors of war that, you know, right now there’s severe economic…

Claude: Right.

Pastor Doug: …challenges that are facing the world and lot of upheaval. Men’s hearts failing for fear. So you got the confluence of all these signs at the same time…

Claude: Right.

Pastor Doug: …which leads a lot of people to think that we are nearing the final labor pains of this planet and when we’re going to be delivered is when Jesus comes.

Claude: And you think if someone is like 30 years old by the time these things… it comes by the time of Christ’s come, are you… some people would be alive at that time?

Pastor Doug: Well, I think in my heart, I believe that Jesus is going to come in this next generation. I’m not setting the day or the hour—nobody knows—but just from what I see happening in the world, I don’t know how it can last much longer.

Claude: You mean, next generation is a…

Pastor Doug: Well, the Bible generation is typically 40 years. But you know, I’m not trying to even put that number on it. I’m just saying that I think…

Claude: Yeah.

Pastor Doug: Well, let’s put it this way. I think most of the people in the world today are not going to die of old age.

Claude: Right, right?

Pastor Doug: If you understand.

Claude: Yes.

Pastor Doug: So, I hope that helps. And by the way, we do have a study guide that specifically talks about signs of the Second Coming. And if anybody wants to get a free copy of that study guide, it’s called, “The Ultimate Deliverance.” “The Ultimate Deliverance,” it’s a study guide talking about the Second Coming. Call 800-835-6747. We’ll send that to you. You can also order that on the Internet at amazingfacts.org. Oh, I see Chris has been waiting patiently. Chris, you’re on the air, listening on WLOJ from Calhoun, Georgia…

Chris: Yes. How are you doing tonight, Pastor Doug?

Pastor Doug: Very well! Thanks for waiting.

Chris: I have a… I’ve been suffering from anxiety.

Pastor Doug: Well, we’ve got about 2 minutes. Summarize it in a question and maybe I can help.

Chris: Where in the Bible can I find peace with that?

Pastor Doug: Well, first thing I’d ask is, is there anything in your life that is out of harmony with God’s will?

Chris: No, there isn’t.

Pastor Doug: Alright. The Bible tells us, “Perfect peace have they that love Thy law and nothing will offend them. Great peace have they that love Thy law,” and so, for one thing is a willingness to the will of God and obey God brings peace. There’s also peace that comes from knowing that your sins are forgiven. “If you confess your sins,” and God’s promises that “He is faithful and just to forgive” you and to “cleanse you from all unrighteousness,” then you know that you have your sins forgiven. Your name is in the Book of Life. What would you be anxious about if Jesus says, “I’m with you always.” If the Lord is always with you and if you know that God loves you more than you love yourself, then there’s really nothing to be afraid of, is there?

Chris: No.

Pastor Doug: That’s probably a good place for us to stop with that, Chris. And I sure appreciate that question. There are a lot of people out there struggling with anxiety. Even Christians. And they don’t need to be anxious for nothing. The Lord want us to have peace. Jesus said, “Let not your heart be troubled,” John chapter 14. And so, friends, don’t be troubled. Trust in the Lord. He’s always with you.

Listening friends, this is… we’re running into the tail-end of our last seconds here and I just want to remind you we’d love to hear from you. Go to the Amazing Facts website and there’s a little button you can click there. It says Contact Us. Write us a note. If you have a Bible question, send your question. You can email a question in or try and take care of it right here on the program. Don’t also forget about the new amazingfacts.tv website; it’s just amazingfacts.tv. You could be watching the video programs of this ministry 24 hours a day. Remember, ‘til next week, Jesus is the truth that sets you free!


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