Lost and Found

Lost and Found

Date: 03/01/2009 
Joe Richardson of Buna, Texas has a fish story that might be hard to swallow, but it’s true. More than twenty years after losing his graduation ring from Universal Technical Institute while fishing in Lake Sam Rayburn, Richardson received a phone call to inform him his ring had been found.

The Ultimate Resource (PB) by Doug Batchelor

The Ultimate Resource (PB) by Doug Batchelor
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Hello friends, this is Doug Batchelor, how about an amazing fact? Joe Richardson of Buna, Texas has a fish story that might be hard to swallow, but it’s true. More than twenty years after losing his graduation ring from Universal Technical Institute while fishing in Lake Sam Rayburn, Richardson received a phone call to inform him his ring had been found. It was not found on the lakeshore or an area pawnshop but in the mouth of an 8.4 pound bass. The forty-one year-old mechanic says he received a call the day after Thanksgiving 2008 from a fisherman who claimed he had found the long lost ring in the mouth of a large bass he’d caught. At first, Richardson thought the call was from an old friend pulling a prank, but he soon realized it was real. His wife Lisa said he was in shock and couldn’t believe it until he held the ring in his hand. Three soldiers fishing during the holiday reeled in this eight pound bass on the lake.

When the fish started flapping around in the bed of the boat, the fishermen noticed the ring pop out of its mouth. Using mosquito spray and WD-40 the soldiers started to clean the grime off the ring. Eventually, they were able to barely make out the name Joe Richardson edged on the inside of the band. Then right there on the lake one of the fisherman pulled out his iPhone and started searching the internet for Joe Richardsons in the area. He made three phone calls before reaching the right person. They later met Joe and Lisa at a Dairy Queen and presented them with the original ring. Lisa said this was like a miracle. And we wondered why did God choose to perform this miracle in our lives, Joe on the other hand, couldn’t help but wonder how many fish the ring had been through in two decades. Did you know the Bible talks about finding money in a fish’s mouth? Stay with us, friends, we’re going to learn more as this edition of Amazing Facts comes to you from Bible Answers Live.

[PROGRAM INTRODUCTION]

Pastor Doug: Hi, listening friends, this is Bible Answers Live and if you have tuned in for the first time, it’s a live, international, interactive Bible study. We are glad that you are listening. If you have any Bible questions you are invited to call right now. We’ve got several lines open and for the next fifty-eight minutes or so we’ll just be taking Bible questions and doing our best to search the word of God together and find out what the truthful answers are. To get your questions on tonight’s broadcast that toll free number one more time 800-GOD-SAYS. So for your Bible questions, pick up the phone now and call 800-463-7297. And we’ll admit we always try to give a little bit of preferential treatment to first time callers, and so you might just mention that to the operators when you call in. My name is Doug Batchelor.

Pastor Jëan Ross: My name is Jëan Ross, and good evening listening friends. Pastor Doug, before we get to the Bible questions let’s start with prayer. Dear Lord, we thank you again for this opportunity to open your word. And we ask for your special blessing for it’s our desire to find truth not only truth as we think of it as abstract truth but we’d like to see the person Jesus who is the truth revealed in Scripture. Be with us this evening in Jesus’ name, amen.

Pastor Doug: Amen.

Pastor Jëan Ross: Now that was quite the fish story, Pastor Doug, that you opened the program with, finding something valuable in the mouth of a fish but then, of course, you mentioned that the Bible tells about another fish story, where somebody found money in the mouth of the fish.

Pastor Doug: That’s right, it’s actually in the Bible and you can read about this in Matthew chapter 17:27. It’s the only place this story is found. Peter had promised that Jesus was a law abiding taxpaying citizen. But He didn’t have the money for the temple tax. And there might be friends out there that are listening now and they’ve got bills they can’t pay. So Peter was instructed by the Lord to do something odd. Jesus said to him, “Go to the sea and cast in a hook and take the fish that comes up first. And when you have opened its mouth you’ll find a piece of money, take that and give it to them for me and for you.” Now we don’t know whether that was bronze or copper, silver, gold, money, it doesn’t say but it was adequate, some metallic coin was in the fish’s mouth. And you and I were talking just before the program wondering how did that ring get in the mouth of that bass? And probably the fisherman had hooked the ring where the hook probably went on the floor of the lake and hooked the old ring and as it was coming up the bass bit it.

And I’ve seen that before because sometimes they go after anything shiny. But this fish sucked up a piece of money and Peter caught it, and it was there to then pay their bills. And there’s a spiritual lesson there, friends. In the Bible fish represent souls. Jesus said to Peter, “Follow me and I’ll make you a fisher of men.” And when Christ rose from the dead two times He ate fish, indicating that He was satisfied if we would bring Him souls, that’s what He wants from us. And when Jesus sent out the apostles preaching, He said, “You don’t even need to take a purse with you, if you are soul winning I will provide for your needs.” So one of the first things we might recommend, friends, is if you’re struggling financially, make sure and seek first God’s kingdom. If you’re willing to be a witness for Him and seek His kingdom, the rest of that Scripture promises everything you need would be added to you. I also think there’s another interesting verse in the Bible, Solomon said in Ecclesiastes 11:1, “Cast your bread upon the waters for it shall return to you after many days or you’ll find it after many days.”

And that’s what Joe Richardson did, he lost his ring there and after twenty-one years he found it again. But of course, that’s not what the Bible’s talking about. When we cast our bread on the water it’s talking about investing in God’s kingdom. Waters represent multitudes of people. And we’re sharing the word of God with people, that’s the bread of life. It comes back to us. It ends up blessing and feeding and nourishing us. And maybe you’re struggling financially, friends, a lot of people are right now, there are promises in God’s word that you can claim that will activate the promises of God to provide for your needs. And if you’d like to know more about those promises of God to sustain you during these difficult times, we have a special gift for you. It’s free. It’s a study guide illustrated a lot of Amazing Facts insight. And we will send it to you simply for asking.

Pastor Jëan Ross: And the name is, “In God We Trust.” “In God We Trust.” It’s Amazing Facts study guide dealing with the subject of money. To receive it, call our resource line 1-800-835-6747. That’s 1-800-835-6747 and asks for the study guide, “In God We trust,” and we will be happy to send that out to you. Well, let’s go to the phone lines. Jim is listening on the internet from Austintown, Ohio. Jim, welcome to the program.

Jim: Thank you, brothers. Pastor, I love your show. I really appreciate it, very helpful. God bless you and everything. One quick question…

Pastor Doug: Yes, sir.

Jim: …I’m doing a study on, you know, the hellfire and a lot of your materials really helpful. In one verse where it talks about where the fire is not quenched and the world does not die, I think you said a place, it was outside Jerusalem where they kept the fire burning and they put the stuff in there. Is there a particular place in the Bible that tells about story?

Pastor Doug: Yeah, if you look in Mark 9; verse 44 Jesus says, “Where the worm dies not, and the fire is not quenched.” Now the word that Christ uses there for hell in the--and that’s the previous verse, verse 43, He said, “It’s better to go in life maimed,” of course nobody is going to go to heaven maimed or crippled.

Jim: Correct.

Pastor Doug: Then going into hell, and the word He uses for hell here is Gehenna. Gehenna was a steep valley and it’s still there today just outside Jerusalem. It used to be steeper but over millennia they filled it in.

Jim: Okay.

Pastor Doug: And you couldn’t…

Jim: You know, well, not to cut you off, I apologize. I do have that Scripture but does it say in the Bible about the place Gehenna?

Pastor Doug: The word Gehenna is in the original group…

Jim: Well, I mean, is there a place that tells of where they…

Pastor Doug: Yes. Let me look here real quick and I’ll see if I can find. Or maybe Pastor Ross will look that up. It’s Valley of Hinnom. If you type that in, Pastor Ross, the Valley of Hinnom. Let me give you another verse in addition to what we just shared with you there for just a second, Jim. If you look in Jeremiah 17:27 and you are not specifically asking about this, but it says in that verse, “But if you’ll not hearken unto me, to hallow the Sabbath day and not to bear a burden, even entering the gates of Jerusalem on the Sabbath day, then I will kindle a fire in the gates thereof and it will devour the palaces of Jerusalem and it shall not be quenched.” Now, when Jerusalem was conquered by Nebuchadnezzar, he burnt the palaces, he burnt the temple; he burnt the gates with the fire that was unquenchable, meaning, the people couldn’t put it out. So here’s an example of how to interpret when Jesus says something cannot be quenched, that gates of Jerusalem are not still burning today from the Babylonian captivity.

Jim: Correct.

Pastor Doug: But here in the Bible it says they’re burned with unquenchable fire.

Jim: You know, it’s just amazing…

Pastor Doug: That means it’s not extinguished.

Jim: That’s really amazing because the more I study into this subject it’s becoming so clear. And I was discussing with a friend that believes that, you know, that there’s a permanent hell and the only verse that she quoted was the one where it says the worm, you know, does not die and everything. And, you know, I told her, I said, there’s a lot of other Scripture that just says, you know, they were perished, they will consume away; they will be no more. And it’s just kind of amazing how I think where we’ve become so lazy and then…

Pastor Doug: If people would just read, the verses are there. And if you don’t mind my sharing and you may already know this, Jim, but others listening would like to know, there’s a website out there, it’s one of the most popular websites, if not the most popular website on the subject of hell.

Jim: Yup.

Pastor Doug: It’s called helltruth.com. Helltruth.com.

Jim: Great website.

Pastor Doug: Now I found the verse I was looking for. It’s Joshua 15; verse 8. When they are talking about the boundaries for Judah it specifically mentions, “It lies before the Valley of Hinnom.” Now, the Hebrew’s the word Hinnom, Greek, it’s Gehenna.

Jim: Okay.

Pastor Doug: Same thing. So that was the valley, steep valley outside Jerusalem. It was a dump and it was always smoldering and it was called the Valley of Hinnom. It was a cursed place.

Jim: Because one of the things that make a lot of sense to me too--this is going to be my last comment because I don’t want to, you know, interfere with the other people calling--was where you made the comment about that there was nowhere in the Bible that God ever compared the soul to a worm, which really made a lot of sense because it says the worm does not die.

Pastor Doug: Right.

Jim: You know, that was another point that, you know. Pastor, I appreciate…

Pastor Doug: Hey, we appreciate, Jim.

Jim: …so much and God bless and may, you know, you just keep doing what you are doing.

Pastor Doug: Thank you. And for our friends listening, Jim, they already know this or have it, but there’s a study guide that we have called “Is the Devil in Charge of Hell?” “Is the Devil in Charge of Hell?” And if you’d like to know what the Bible really teaches about the punishment of the wicked, there is a hell, there is a lake of fire, the Bible does not teach it burns through ceaseless ages. And there’s a lot of Scripture in the Bible that makes this very clear. Call for toll free number.

Pastor Jëan Ross: 1-800-835-6747. And the study guide is entitled, “Is the Devil in Charge of Hell?” And we’ll be happy to send that to you. Hannibal is listening on the internet from Los Angeles. Hannibal, welcome to the program.

Hannibal: How’s it going, Pastor Doug?

Pastor Doug: Good. And your question tonight?

Hannibal: When we get into Leviticus chapter 11 it speaks of the dietary and health laws.

Pastor Doug: Yes.

Hannibal: Now we know God gave these laws out of love as opposed to being a punishment. When we move ahead to Matthew chapter 29 Jesus speaks about famish to come.

Pastor Doug: Yes.

Hannibal: Revelation also speaks about the time when you can’t buy yourself.

Pastor Doug: Right.

Hannibal: My question is during these times would it be wrong to eat these unclean foods and take part in these forbidden practices?

Pastor Doug: Well, I might answer your question with a question. In the days of Christ when they brought a temple, when they brought a sacrifice into the sanctuary, they were supposed to bring a clean animal. You could bring a lamb or a goat or a dove. If you didn’t have a lamb or a goat or a dove, would it be okay to bring a pig, a skunk and a buzzard?

Hannibal: I would think not but…

Pastor Doug: Into the temple of God and offered as a sacrifice.

Hannibal: Excuse me?

Pastor Doug: Would it be okay to bring a pig, a skunk or a buzzard into the temple and offered as a sacrifice?

Hannibal: I don’t know.

Pastor Doug: Well, I think not. I think that because, you know, when you bring an offering to God you want it to be a clean offering. Now there are some things that--like I’m a vegetarian, but if I was dying of hunger I might eat clean fish but I would not eat something that God’s words specifically said, “Thou shalt not touch it.” I mean it’s like the Lord said, “Thou shalt not bow down to a graven image, thou shalt not kill.” There are certain things that it’s a clear command of God.

Hannibal: So it’d be better to perish than to break the law.

Pastor Doug: Yeah, I think when it comes to eating something that God calls an abomination. An example in the Bible is Daniel chapter 1, Daniel said, “They had resolved, they would not defile themselves with the king’s food,” and so they were willing to lose their heads and starve to death rather than eat things that were unclean.

Hannibal: Right.

Pastor Doug: So I think you need to, you know, put God first and He’ll take care of you.

Pastor Jëan Ross: And, you know, we do have a promise…

Hannibal: Take care of (Unintelligible)

Pastor Jëan Ross: We do have a promise in Isaiah 33; verse 16, where God says that, “Our bread and our water will be sure.” And so when we find ourselves in those types of situations, God has promised to provide for us. He doesn’t say that we’ll have a three course meal but He will provide our necessity.

Pastor Doug: That, you know, reminds me, of course, when the children of Israel who were going through the wilderness, God provided for them. He provided quail which was a clean bird and then He provided bread. When Elijah was fleeing from Jezebel, he didn’t start eating lizards because he was hungry. An angel stopped and brought him food and even Jesus angels came to ministered him. So in that time of great need God often miraculously provides food. So we shouldn’t worry about these hypothetical worries or concerns. Hey, appreciate that, Hannibal, and freeze up another line if you’d like to call in with your question.

Pastor Jëan Ross: Our next caller is Donna and she’s listening on WMUZ from Detroit, Michigan. Donna, welcome to the program.

Donna: Hello, how are you? Praise the Lord.

Pastor Doug: Doing well. How can we help you tonight?

Donna: Well, you know, I had the same question about the dietarian laws but my questions are these. You know, certain cheeses and mustard and I drink coffee but I switched to decaffeinated coffee. And I’m trying to find out where in Scripture or where can one get information about specific foods that are really not…

Pastor Doug: Not every food is mentioned in Scripture, is that what you’re asking about? Well, some of the things you just named you’re not going to find the word caffeine or coffee or even tea, I don’t think, no it’s not mentioned in the Bible. There are some principles that are in the Bible, Donna. First of all, there is the ideal diet. The ideal diet is the one that you find God originally designed for the human race which was the diet He gave Adam and Eve, beginning with fruits, grains, nuts, beans, legumes. Then He added vegetables, believe it or not vegetables were added after man was chased from the Garden of Eden. He said, “You’ll eat the herb of the field.” Then after the flood when all the vegetation was destroyed as sort of an emergency they were allowed to eat up the clean animal.

Donna: Clean meat.

Pastor Doug: Yeah.

Donna: Okay.

Pastor Doug: Right. And so, you know, I find that it works just to use a simple principle of a stop sign or a stop light at a traffic signal. You’ve got red, green and yellow. The green light of the things I mentioned that Adam and Eve ate in the Garden of Eden they are good, they are blessed, they are good for you and all the scientific evidence is there. We’re a lot better off if we avoid animal products. Then it’s yellow light. There are some things you should eat or you can eat but it ought to be done in moderation. The Bible says, “Eat honey for its good, don’t eat too much honey or you’ll vomit.” And so obviously sugar and some things or treat, Bible says, “He’ll lead us to a land flowing with milk and honey.” Well, maybe a little bit but too much milk and honey ends up in ice cream. You know what I’m saying? And you can’t eat too much of that.

Donna: Okay.

Pastor Doug: And then there are things that are addictive, any food or substance that is addictive, people get addicted to caffeine, anything that can be addictive should be avoided and…

Donna: If we switch to non-caffeinated coffee…

Pastor Doug: Well, that’s certainly a big improvement. And, you know, probably the worst part of coffee is the caffeine. It’s the most addictive part. And that’s why so many soda drinks became addictive. Pepsi and Coca Cola, the reason they swept the market is because they had several, their primary drinks are caffeinated and now look at all the caffeinated drinks they’ve got on the shelves. In just 7-Eleven they’ve got these things that are like hyper-caffeinated drinks. And lot of young kids, I understand, are going to school now and they’re just all just wound up and it’s getting to be quite a problem. It can wreak havoc on the nervous system over a period of time. You know, so there are some basic principles certain foods may not be mentioned in the Bible, you mentioned mustard and some of these, some can irritate the digestive system. And, you know, Advil is good if you got a headache but you take a lot of Advil and it can burn the lining of your stomach.

Donna: Yeah.

Pastor Doug: So, you know, this is just common sense. You’re not going to find all that information in the Bible because of course, they didn’t even have those things back then. We do have a study guide that we’ll be happy to share with you, Donna, and it’s talking about “God’s Free Health Plan.” It’s filled with Bible information on what the Bible says about health secrets for a longer, stronger life. We’ll send it to you or anyone who wants to know what are the Bible secrets for a longer, stronger life and also, for healing? “God’s Free Health Plan.”

Pastor Jëan Ross: The number is 1-800-835-6747 and again, “God’s Free Health Plan,” an Amazing Facts study guide that we’ll be happy to send you on the subject of health. Our next caller is Mark and he is calling from Twin Falls, Idaho, listening on the internet. Mark, welcome to the program.

Mark: Well, thank you and thank you, Pastor Doug, for taking my call.

Pastor Doug: Yes, sir, how can we help?

Mark: Yes, I was curious about-- I’ve been working for farms for about the past seven years and I’ve started following what I believe to be biblical Sabbath, of the seventh day of the week. And the farmers, I’ve work with two farmers and they both allow me to do that. But they believe that you can’t really do that. You know, they work seven days a week. And I was wondering-- I always thought God, you know, didn’t want--it’s livestock you’ve got to take care of it whatever the problem. Currently I’m working on is basically irrigation. And I wanted to know if there are the Biblical verses that deal with God saying that even agricultural work shouldn’t be done on the Sabbath unless that’s absolutely necessary.

Pastor Doug: Well, yeah, I think there are verses that support that. First of all, I agree. I mean, any Christian who is a farmer--and this has been the practice in America for hundreds of years all the Protestants used to keep Sunday, they would milk their animals and, you know, feed them. But they would not be out in the fields hoeing or planting or watering. They maybe work a little harder on Thursday and Friday or if they were Sunday-keepers they might even do it on Saturday but they didn’t rest the Sabbath even on the farms. Now, like I said, there are certain necessary things for, you know, the care of animals. Even Jesus talked about that you don’t leave your oxen or your sheep in the ditch on the Sabbath and you need to milk the cows or they suffer or you need to feed them. The animals even God cares about in the Sabbath commandment it specifically says your oxen or your donkey, now those were animals that were used for plowing.

Now if they are supposed to rest on the Sabbath how can you plough your field? And then the Jews also had a law that they not only took off every Sabbath from their farm, they took off every seventh year. The whole year they let the land keep a Sabbath. So talk about being strict about resting on the farm they rest the whole land for a whole year. And let the soil recover. So there’s a lot of verses in the Bible I think that, you know, support that they would lay aside the planting and the sowing, it specifically says on the Sabbath and harvesting. They gave Jesus and the disciples a hard time when they were just even harvesting in the field to eat. They were pulling corn from the sheaves of grain and eating that while they’re walking and some of the Pharisees says, “You’re harvesting on the Sabbath and that’s not allowed.” Well, they weren’t harvesting. They were like plucking an apple from a tree. So there’s a lot, all through the Bible there’s principles there that that should be avoided.

Mark: The main issue, he says, is that if we don’t irrigate seven days a week then we won’t be able to maintain the crops. And actually from my experience I believe that we would be able to.

Pastor Doug: Yeah, I think they’d be able to also. You can just plan ahead. They probably mean on their present schedule they couldn’t but if you plan ahead you just have to--you know, it’s more volume of water the more acreage you can do it. But land can go one day without water, even in the desert and not everything will die if it’s…

Mark: And that’s where we are. Now we’re in the high desert. But okay, thank you very much.

Pastor Doug: Alright. Hey, thanks, Mark, hope that helps. We got time for one more before our break, Pastor Ross.

Pastor Jëan Ross: Alright. Monique is listening on WMCA from Brooklyn, New York. Monique, welcome to the program.

Monique: Hi, Pastor Doug Batchelor.

Pastor Doug: Hi.

Monique: Nice to hear from you.

Pastor Doug: Well likewise. How can we help you tonight, Monique?

Monique: I’m calling in regards, because I wanted to know, you know, in Ezekiel where he talks about dry bone.

Pastor Doug: Yes, I think that--is that 37?

Monique: I’m not sure. I don’t have my Bible right now with me.

Pastor Doug: Okay.

Monique: And I was wondering, was that a vision or was that a real story?

Pastor Doug: It’s a vision.

Monique: It was a vision?

Pastor Doug: Yeah. See, and for our friends who are listening this is the vision of the dry bones that Ezekiel had. It was not uncommon in Bible times after a great battle between two armies, that the slain would not even all be buried because sometimes invading army was from another country. The bodies would just lay out in the field. They bleached, they’d get picked clean and you could find the valley of bones. Well, the children of Israel had been beaten up by the enemy and they felt like the valley of dry bones. And so when Ezekiel preaches the word and they come back to life he was saying, “I will bring you back to your land. You will rise up and be an army again. And the word of God will give you life again.” And so it was a vision that Ezekiel had. He didn’t really see a valley of bones that where bone came to bone and there was a great shaking and the wind blew. I mean that’d be pretty scary if it really happened. That will happen during resurrection. I mean…

Monique: Oh, I always thought it was a real story. I mean I just never thought about it. I just thought it was a real story.

Pastor Doug: No, it’s not something that he actually experienced. It says that, “The hand of the Lord was upon me.” This is Ezekiel 37; number 1. That usually means it’s a vision.

Monique: Oh, okay. Then thank you so much.

Pastor Doug: The spirit of the God came upon him and he had this vision. So I mean, you know, it says he was to preach to the bones and they all came together. And anyway, Pastor Ross?

Pastor Jëan Ross: Of course, there’s a spiritual application there where the word of God brings spiritual life to a person often. Someone feels as though they’ve sinned so much they’re so far from God that they’re just dry bones that God can’t do anything with them that they have no spiritual life. But when we hear and receive the word of God there is power in the word to transform us to give us spiritual life and strength.

Pastor Doug: And they rose up on their feet and were become exceeding great army.

Pastor Jëan Ross: Absolutely.

Pastor Doug: We have time for one more. He said two minutes.

Pastor Jëan Ross: Well, we could get started.

Pastor Doug: Let’s try.

Pastor Jëan Ross: Heidi is listening in KFIA from North Highlands. Heidi, welcome to the program.

Heidi: Hello. How are you?

Pastor Doug: Evening, we’ve got about two minutes before the break. Can we help you with this?

Heidi: I hope so. I’d like to know what does it actually mean to seek God’s kingdom first? I understand about praying and going to church and doing His will. But what does it mean to seek His kingdom?

Pastor Doug: Well, if you read in Jeremiah 29; verse 13, it says, “You’ll search for me and you’ll find me when you search for me with all your heart.” Seeking His kingdom, when you say the Lord’s prayer and you probably have heard that before, Heidi…

Heidi: Oh yeah.

Pastor Doug: ...“Thy will be done, thy kingdom come.” And so when it says seeking first the Kingdom of God it would mean the interests of Christ’s kingdom, the law of His kingdom, the word of His kingdom. You know, what Christ’s purpose is, is to win souls to His kingdom. So seeking first the Kingdom of God is to seek the interests of Jesus’ mission and make them the priority.

Pastor Jëan Ross: Yeah, the Kingdom of God is where Jesus rules supreme. And we want Him to rule Supreme in our hearts.

Pastor Doug: Yeah. And live our lives so that it glorifies Him and we’re living in harmony with His truth. Sorry to be quick with your answer, Heidi. We wanted to get one more in before we took our break and that’s all we are doing now, friends, we are taking a break. We’ve got some important announcements for you. But when we come back on the other end of this break we’re going to go back to the phones. Once again, the number is 800-GOD-SAYS. In the meantime, we want to remind you if you have a pencil or halfway decent memory you can remember Amazing Facts. Amazing Facts. You type in Amazing Facts just as I say Google it. I don’t know if you are using Yahoo, do Yahoo it.

But if you just type it into your search browser you’ll go right to our homepage and there’s just a very deep and wide, broad spectrum of Bible resources that are available at the Amazing Facts website. Sometimes we have to take just a short amount of time with our Bible questions during the program but then we direct people to the website because there is a lot more detail on these subjects and we’ve got booklets and study guide on hundreds of different questions that come in. You can also watch our TV programs there at the Amazing Facts website as well as engage in the Amazing Facts Bible study school. And so you can go there or even check out bibleuniverse.com. You’ll find out more about the Bible study school. Well we’re not gone. We’re just taking a break. We’ll be right back.

[COMMERCIAL BREAK]

Pastor Doug: We are back and we are live and we are going to the phones in just a moment. If you’ve tuned in along the way, this is Bible Answers live and if you have a Bible Questions you can call 800-GOD-SAYS. That’s 463-7297. Pastor Ross, let’s see who’s next.

Pastor Jëan Ross: Okay, our next caller is Kerry and he is calling from North Vernon in Indiana. Kerry, welcome to the program.

Kerry: Hey, how are you guys doing?

Pastor Doug: Good. And your question tonight?

Kerry: Okay. I’m just wanting to know what you guys can tell me about sacrifices and offerings in the Old Testament, you know, does a bull represent like a certain kind of sin or is there difference between offering a bull and a goat or goat and a sheep, doves? And, you know, what’s the way of offering and what’s the sin offering and a burn offering and anything you can tell me like that?

Pastor Doug: Alright. Hey, I appreciate that. I’ll give you some quick, an overview. They had offerings that were offerings of thanks giving from the field. They were fruit and food that required no shedding of blood or no taking of life. Those were your grain offerings. They would have the first fruit offerings. Those were like when we have Thanksgiving and we share our food with the poor. It’s really celebration of the harvest so they make offerings to God and to the temple. They didn’t burn their grain offerings as though God was going to eat them like some pagan cultures do. But they did offer some of it as a token and the best part of it was kept in store for the priesthood and the ministers, the Levites. Then you had offerings of animals. And they would range based on the value of an animal.

The simpler animals, and it often went by their size and intelligence, the doves were what the poor people gave. You remember when Jesus was born Mary and Joseph brought turtledoves because they were so poor that’s all they could afford when He was circumcised and named. Then they would offer a sheep, during Passover they offered a lamb. You could also substitute with a goat but a sheep was considered to be superior because the wool was valued more than the milk. Goats you get more milk, sheep you get more wool. An oxen was like the royal offering. It would be offered for a family or a tribe. Solomon has a majestic, very expensive offering, they would often then have a feast after an oxen was offered.

Solomon offered like a thousand oxen when he first became king before the Lord, so that was like the Cadillac of offerings. And it could represent a sacrifice, a blood sacrifice for the whole family. So I hope that helps a little bit, Kerry. That’s just sort of, like I said, an overview. We’ve got a booklet we can send you that tells a little bit about the sacrificial system and it’s called “Feast Days and Sabbath,” and we’ll be happy to send that to you if you a free copy or you can just call.

Pastor Jëan Ross: The number is 1-800-835-6747 and it’s “Feast Days and Sabbath,” and we’ll be happy to send that out. Our next caller is Robert and he is calling for Bloomfield, New Jersey, listening on WMCA. Robert, welcome to Bible Answers Live.

Robert: Good evening, Pastor Ross and Pastor Doug.

Pastor Doug: Evening.

Robert: And my question is concerning the commandment of the Sabbath in the New Testament. Now what I’m curious about is why is the Sabbath in the New Testament commanded by Jesus or any of the apostles? As a matter of fact, in Acts 15:20 at the Council of Jerusalem, when they said a lot of things of what not to do or to do, one of them mention the commandment of the Sabbath and it was like, to keep the Sabbath. So I’m curious as to why is it not mentioned or barely even mentioned as a commandment or something that should be kept within the New Testament? By either the apostles or Jesus Himself for that matter.

Pastor Doug: Alright. Well, let me take you on with that one. In Acts 15:20 what they are doing is they are talking to the Gentile converts to Christianity and there were some confusion about which of the ceremonial laws or what should they keep among the laws. There was no question about the Ten Commandments. In that--and I’ll read it from the Bible, it says, “But that we write unto them that they abstain from pollution of idols,” no idolatry, “from fornication,” that not only means adultery it means sex outside of marriage, “and from things strangled,” now here you got one of the Levitical laws about eating things that still had the blood in them because you can cut the throat and drain the blood, or you could strangle an animal.

It says they weren’t to eat things that were strangled and from blood. Now here you’ve got a law about not eating blood in the New Testament. But you’ll notice in this verse it doesn’t say anything about that you’re not suppose to kill, it also doesn’t mention not using God’s name in vain, it doesn’t mention that you’re not to dishonor your parents. Lot of the commandments were left out of that verse, so we can’t read that verse and say, “I guess it’s now okay to dishonor my parents, to murder, to steal, it doesn’t mention stealing. You see what I’m saying? So…

Robert: Right.

Pastor Doug: …the Sabbath is mentioned many times in the New Testament. There is one of the Ten Commandments that you do not find repeated in the New Testament, it’s a commandment that says, “Thou shalt not take the name of the Lord they God in vain for the Lord will not hold him guiltless that take His name in vain.” That’s not in the New Testament but I’m sure that you believe we should still keep that commandment.

Robert: Oh, absolutely.

Pastor Doug: But in the New Testament there’s multiple times-- for instance if you go to Acts chapter 13; verse14, it says that they were going to the synagogue on the Sabbath day. You go to Acts 13; verse 27 and it says they read them every Sabbath. Jesus as His custom was He went into the church on the Sabbath day. It was a custom of Christ. So, you know, even all the way when you get to Hebrews, it says, “There remains therefore the keeping of a Sabbath for the people of God.” So, you know, it’s a myth I often hear repeated that the Sabbath is not mentioned in the New Testament. It’s mentioned many times.

Robert: So when Paul says in the Book of Acts to gather on the first day and have the orphans really comes by and he picks it up, that’s…

Pastor Doug: Well actually he says that--that’s not in Acts, that’s in 1st Corinthian 16.

Robert: Oh, I’m sorry, yes. Okay yeah, you’re right. But that’s not really a religious gathering. That’s really more or less say, I guess, a collection for offerings that are for a community or something like that, right?

Pastor Doug: Well, the key for it is, he says on the first of the week let everyone lay by him in store that there’d be no gatherings when I come. He is saying I don’t want you to make a collection when you’re together. I want you to lay by yourself in store, meaning, at home set something aside. So the first of the week there has nothing to do with the religious day. And, you know, I think that we have to ask a real simple question, if God speaks the Ten Commandments with His voice, writes it with…

Robert: Right.

Pastor Doug: …His finger and specifies we should remember to keep the seventh day, if He was going to change that to another day, would that change be so nebulous or would He be clear about it?

Robert: You’re right. And I know somewhere along, I think in the second century eventually changed somehow rather into this first day of the week.

Pastor Doug: You’re right.

Robert: You know it wasn’t…

Pastor Doug: They gradually began to change.

Robert: Even though it wasn’t ordered.

Pastor Doug: Yeah, you’re right. That’s what happened.

Robert: Oh, okay.

Pastor Doug: The church gradually began to substitute the first day of the week for the seventh day of the week because they went through an era where the Jews became very unpopular and that Christians were trying to distance themselves from the Jewish and said, well let’s just keep the day the Romans are keeping which was Sunday. That was the day they worship the sun. Anyway, anything to add to that, Pastor Ross?

Pastor Jëan Ross: Well, I’m just looking at some of the resources we have here. We have, of course, that website called sabbathtruth.org that is filled with great resources…

Pastor Doug: Again.

Pastor Jëan Ross: …with the Sabbath subject.

Pastor Doug: That’s one of the most popular websites on the subject, sabbathtruth.org or even if you type in sabbathtruth.com, if you even Google Sabbath truth lot of good resources there at that website that you can study and it addresses the question that Robert just asked.

Pastor Jëan Ross: And then, of course, we also have the Amazing Facts study guide called “The Lost Day of History” talking about the Sabbath. We’d be happy to send that out to anyone who calls our resource line 1-800-835-6747 and ask for the study guide on the Sabbath and we’ll send that out to you. John is listening on the internet from Dallas, Texas. John, welcome to the program.

John: Yes, good evening, Pastors, how are you all doing?

Pastor Doug: Evening, John.

John: Alright. My question has to do with-- I don’t know if it’s a direct answer from the Bible or this was more opinion, your view on it, but what do you think about the reciting of the fourth commandment, every service, once a week when you meet for worship service and you recite the Sabbath fourth commandment? And also, what is your take on travel, having to take a fight during the Lord’s Sabbath hours?

Pastor Doug: Alright. Two questions there. One is dealing with, you know, is it wrong or is it necessary? Two, recite the fourth commandment every Sabbath. You know, there is certainly nothing wrong with reading the Scriptures on the Sabbath, or you don’t want to do anything where it’s overly repetitive because, you know, Jesus said, “Don’t pray in vain repetition.” But hey, you know, I know some churches that years ago that used to read through the Ten Commandments every week. You know, some might interpret that as tedious. I think it’s good to remember the word of God and to recite the word of God. There certainly no commandment that you have to do it. The only concern would be you wouldn’t want it to be monotonous so after a while people weren’t really listening to what you said.

And then your second question was what about taking flight, meaning, I supposed domestic travel or domestic flying on the Sabbath. Well, you know, you want to avoid, first of all, buying and selling and sometimes the environment of an airport with delays and things is not a very spiritual atmosphere. I always try to avoid ever scheduling any flying on the Sabbath hours because you want to be at home, you want to rest, the commandment says, you know, you should abide in your tent. Meaning, you know, you should find a home and relax and spend time with the family, gather together for worship. But sometimes I’ve flown overseas where because of the time change I found myself stuck in an airport, you know, you can’t avoid it. I would recommend that people try to avoid it. It’s not the best environment but anything to add?

Pastor Jëan Ross: Yeah, absolutely. You know, if you want to make Sabbath special it’s difficult to make it special when we’re running to catch a plane or in that environment. If at all possible try and schedule the Sabbath hours to be at home or to be spending it with fellow believers, to be worshipping. That’s really what God would have us do.

Pastor Doug: Exactly. Hope that helps a little bit, John. And appreciate your call. We also have that lesson we’ve offered a minute ago on “The Lost Days of History.”

Pastor Jëan Ross: Our next caller is Marsha listening on WMUZ from Dearborn, Michigan. Marsha, welcome to the program.

Marsha: Yes, good evening, Pastor Doug and Pastor Ross. Thank you for having me on your show. How are you doing?

Pastor Doug: Good. How can we help you, Marsha?

Marsha: Yes, I got another Sabbath question.

Pastor Doug: Well, we’ve had several tonight.

Marsha: I was talking with my (Unintelligible 42:23) about the National Sunday law. And they want to know, when the Sunday law was passed can you keep or what about keeping both days as a Sabbath?

Pastor Doug: Alright. Well, I tell you what, why don’t I do…

Marsha: Keeping both days.

Pastor Doug: Yeah. Let me answer the question that way if it’s okay. If a person learns the truth about what day is the Sabbath, of course, a lot of dear Christians go to church in the first day of the week, what we call Sunday biblically and even most pastors will admit that biblically the seventh day or Saturday is the Sabbath that God blessed in the Ten Commandments. What about a person keeping both days. Well, there’s certainly nothing wrong with going to church Sunday through Saturday, seven days a week. If you want to go to church seven days a week, you want to be careful about giving the wrong impression. If you’re going to the church with a congregation that doesn’t support the Scriptures, you could leave the impression that you’re endorsing something that isn’t correct.

Now I visit Christians that worship on the first day of the week and it’s good sometimes to just go in fellowship and spend time, and I believe they worship God and God meets and blesses them. But I wouldn’t do that as an ongoing practice because it might send the signal that I’m endorsing something that really isn’t biblical. And so that would be my concern with that, Marsha. And, yeah, when Marsh was referring to Sunday law many Christians believe in the same way that over history the devil has made laws requiring people to break one of the laws of God, then in the last days what if the devil were to make a law and inspire the government to require people to rest on Sunday and what would that do to Sabbath keepers. It’s something if you want to know more about it go to the Sabbath truth website, sabbathtruth.com.

Pastor Jëan Ross: Our next caller is a Byron and he is calling from Shawnee, Kansas, listening on the internet. Byron, welcome to the program.

Byron: Good evening. Thank you for your ministry.

Pastor Doug: Hi, thank you, Byron. And your question?

Byron: I have read a couple of different books. One was kind of a kids’ or young adult book and the other one was a novel kind of based on the life of Christ. That mentioned or referred to Jesus, James and John the disciples, sons of Zebedee as Jesus’ cousins. You know, neither of those was like, what I would say, a reference book, so I was just wondering where they might have gotten the idea that Jesus was a cousin to them and if that might be true or not?

Pastor Doug: You know, I’ve read that before. I don’t think there’s enough evidence in the Bible to be dogmatic about it. I’ve heard a number of commentators that have tried to say that and a part of the reason that Mary and the other--I’m trying to remember her name--she was at the cross with Mary.

Byron: Salome.

Pastor Doug: Salome, yeah. That they were either sisters or first cousins making Jesus, John and James cousins. Now, you know, like I said, you can’t really make a dogmatic argument about that from the Bible but I have read that in some of the commentaries. I think the evidence is weak. It is true that Jesus and John the Baptist were cousins.

Byron: Right.

Pastor Doug: That, you can prove because it’s right there in the text. But the other part is I think it grew out of tradition and it’s just stuck with us. I don’t know that you can prove it.

Byron: So it’s based on the relationship with Salome?

Pastor Doug: Yeah, Mary supposedly was either the sister of, or first cousin of James and Johns, Zebedee’s wife.

Byron: Oh.

Pastor Doug: James and John’s mother. And I can’t remember what their logic was but it didn’t sound very compelling to me.

Byron: Okay. Well, I hadn’t heard that until recently and I was wondering, you know, where it possibly could have come from.

Pastor Doug: It could be true. Of course, we wouldn’t change the doctrines of the Bible at all. It’s just an interesting piece of trivia.

Byron: Yeah. Well, thank you for your time.

Pastor Doug: Alright. Thank you very much, Byron. Appreciate your question.

Pastor Jëan Ross: Our next caller is Bryant listening on the internet from Phoenix, Arizona. Bryant, welcome to the program.

Pastor Doug: Bryant, are you on?

Bryant: I’m here. Can you hear me?

Pastor Doug: Yes, sir. And your question?

Bryant: My question is this. Okay. God gave Adam and Eve dominion of the earth in Genesis 1:26, right?

Pastor Doug: Correct.

Bryant: When they sinned they gave it to Satan, that’s Roman 6:16. Now I’ve been taught that when Jesus conquered the cross He took back, I guess, authority of the earth and I read that in Matthew 28:18, although He hadn’t died yet. Now my question is this, if Jesus took back the authority of heaven and earth, then like, why does He allow Satan to still be so deceptive and cause, you know, pain and suffering?

Pastor Doug: Well, first of all, the verse I think you might be…

Bryant: I think it’s Roman.

Pastor Doug: Right, the verse I think you might be referring to is John 12:31. Jesus said, “Now is the judgment of this world and now shall the prince of this world be cast out.” Satan up until the time of the cross claimed the earth as his dominion. But sometime sentence is pronounced on a criminal before sentence is executed. There’s a lot of people who are on death row for years before they actually are executed. And then there are some people who are tried before they are even arrested and, you know, with Osama bin Laden would be an example. Here you’ve got someone who’s basically the evidence is by his own admission that he is a terrorist and he is supporting, you know, killing of innocent men, women and children.

There is an international price on his head. He is basically been judged already and deemed guilty and worthy of death because the reward is dead or alive bring in Osama bin Laden. But he’s still out there. So he’s been judged. The difference is CIA and MI6 might not be able to find bin laden but Jesus is going to find Lucifer. And he is going to be judged when Christ comes back.

Bryant: So Pastor…

Pastor Doug: Yeah.

Bryant: …are you there?

Pastor Doug: I’m here.

Bryant: Yeah, so Jesus is the ruler now or is He going to be the ruler of the new earth? I mean, is He the ruler of the current earth now?

Pastor Doug: Well, the Bible tells us “the earth is the Lords and the fullness thereof,” that goes all the way back to the Old Testament. Satan has kidnapped the planet and obviously Satan’s a terrorist. He is still out there and at large. He is still wreaking havoc on the world, right?

Bryant: I see. Right, yeah.

Pastor Doug: So, I mean, Christ is the ruler of the world. He is king of kings. But the devil is still on the loose.

Bryant: Okay.

Pastor Doug: But he is going to be arrested and held bondage on this planet. “Angels is going to bind him with a chain for a thousand years,” Revelation 20 says, “when Christ descends from heaven.” So that day is coming very, very soon and the devil knows his time is short. He knows that day is coming and He has great wrath.

Pastor Jëan Ross: You know, there’s two parts in the Kingdom of God, you got the Kingdom of Grace and then you got the Kingdom of Glory. The Kingdom of Grace…

Pastor Doug: That’s right.

Pastor Jëan Ross: …is what God does in the hearts of those who believe in Him. A Christian is a citizen of the Kingdom of God but the Kingdom of Glory takes place when Jesus comes the second time and finally at the end of the one thousand years when the new earth is created and so on. But now by faith we look forward to that Kingdom of Glory but we can’t presently experience the Kingdom of Grace.

Pastor Doug: Good point. When Jesus began preaching, He said the Kingdom of Heaven is at hand. So Christ did become prince of that kingdom in a sense when His sacrifice was successful. Hey, I hope that make sense, Bryant. And I’m trying to think if there’s anything that we can send him on that. We just talked why--“Did God Make the Devil?”

Pastor Jëan Ross: That would be a great study. For anyone wondering more about that, it’s called “Did God Create the Devil?” And the number is 1-800-835-6747, you can ask for the study guide about the devil, “Did God Create the Devil?” Our next caller is Patricia listening on KADV from Senora, California. Patricia, welcome to the program.

Patricia: Thank you. Good evening, Pastors.

Pastor Doug: Evening.

Patricia: I have a question. I’m studying with my friend’s mom. She is eighty-nine years old. And a question came about Jesus having brothers and sisters. And I didn’t know if you had any Scriptures that I could share with her in regards to this.

Pastor Doug: I do.

Patricia: Oh great. Thank you.

Pastor Doug: Matthew 13:55, Matthew 13:55. When Jesus was preaching in Nazareth and He was doing all the miracles it kind of bewildered His neighbors that had known Him all His life. They said, is not this the carpenter’s son, is not his mother called Mary and his brethren James, Joses, Simon and Judas and His sisters are they not all here with us? Well, it doesn’t tell us how many sisters but more than one because it says sisters. So he had at least four brothers and at least two sisters. And probably by the time He began His ministry Joseph had died already because he never appears at any point in Christ ministry, in the New Testament, after Jesus begins preaching. But yeah, Jesus had four brothers and at least two sisters and here they’re named in Matthew 13:55 and 56.

Patricia: 13:5 and 56. Great. Thank you so much. And thank you so much for your ministry.

Pastor Doug: Alright, thank you and God bless you.

Pastor Jëan Ross: Travis is calling from Taylor, Michigan, listening on WMUZ. Travis, welcome to the program.

Travis: Hi thank you. I had a question regarding salvation. I read a lot, especially in Galatians, how it says that Paul--he said, “There’s seventeen works for the flesh that those who practice and will not inherit the Kingdom of Heaven.” And my question is in regards to salvation when a Christian becomes born again, is it possible then for them to practice those works of the flesh and then lose their salvation?

Pastor Doug: There are two ways that Christians encounter sin. One is you can slip. The other is that it rains over you. If a person is habitually committing some act, then they are not free. I mean Christianity is about being free. Jesus said of the son will make you free, you’ll be free indeed. I mean what kind of witnesses a different person says I accepted Jesus, He forgave my sins and He saved me but I am still practicing alcoholic. It’s in congruous. But if a person is saved and, you know, if a Christian loses their temper and says a word that they shouldn’t say and they repent, it doesn’t mean that they’ve gone from lost to saved or lost to saved in one day. God immediately supplies grace for that. Paul puts it this way, “Sin shall not have dominion over you.” And so if sin has dominion over Christian, then they do need to seriously question their relationship with the Lord and if they are living a life of victory it’s…

Travis: Yeah, and what about somebody who has been serving God for a long time and they have been Christian for a long time, and those types of things come up in their life…

Pastor Doug: Well, every Christian is tempted. If they are not tempted, then there’s something wrong their comprehension.

Travis: Well, yeah. But also just a matter of fact that, let’s say, for example, a Christian is-- let’s say you start off as a young person and you’re Christian and let’s say the temptation of alcohol comes in and the Christians submits to that alcoholic tendency and that develops into a pattern of behavior that is destructive and at least the drunkenness, would that Christian then be considered someone who is now not saved even though they may professed Christ and they are praying for the victory? And I’m using it as an example. I’m not struggling with alcoholism, but it’s an example.

Pastor Doug: Okay, well, let’s take that as an example. What I’d rather do I would switch examples if it’s okay. Let’s suppose it’s immorality or adultery. You got someone who’s been godly a Christian and they are following the Lord and they slip into impurity, if they don’t repent of that--King David had that experience--that’s why I wanted to shift. He was saved but then he slipped and Nathan basically told him he was going to die if he did not repent. And David did repent and he’ll be in the kingdom, but he had that repent, I mean, he got on his face, he gave up the sin, he was suffered for his sin. All sin has consequences. And so if a Christian slips into drug use or alcoholism, they can’t say, oh, well I’m going to be practicing alcoholic but I went to the alter when I was ten years old so I’m saved.

No, they got to get the victory over that because sin shall not have dominion over you. That’s the key. Paul said, “Let not sin reign.” Now when sin reigns it means it’s on the throne. Sin should not be on the throne in our lives. And if a person is, you know, held by an addiction like that, then Jesus isn’t on the throne, they’ve got an idol there and it could be alcoholic, it could be sex, it could be drugs or shopping or money or all kinds of things. If anything else is on the throne other than Christ, their salvation is in a very precarious position. Does that make sense, Travis?

Travis: It does. So you are coming to conclusion that salvation can’t be acquired or it can’t be forfeited?

Pastor Doug: Yeah. And I think the Bible is very clear on that because you’ve got multiple examples of people who…

Travis: Sure.

Pastor Doug: …were saved and then they-- you know, Paul talks about those who turned away, Peter talks about it--and, yeah, salvation is something to be nurtured and cherished. Jesus will never let go of you, but we’re still free to turn our backs on Him.

Pastor Jëan Ross: You know, we have a book, Pastor Doug, called, “Can a Saved Man be Lost?”

Pastor Doug: Perfect. Perfect.

Pastor Jëan Ross: Which deals with the subject. The number real quick 1-800-835-6747, ask for the book “Can a Saved Man be Lost?”

Pastor Doug: Oh, that’s a good one, Travis. I hope you or anyone who wants to understand the subject of one saved always saved, it gives a balanced Scriptural support for that that I think you’ll find irrefutable. If you believe the Bible, that is. Hey, listening friends, have you ever been blessed by this program? The reason you are listening is because folks like you want to help keep us on the air. We’d love for you to be one of those friends. And if you would like to be a supporter of this broadcast, maybe you’ve never done anything like this before, good time to start. Go to amazingfacts.org you can donate right there online and learn about all we have. Remember friends, Jesus is the truth that will set you free.

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