Earth's Treasure, Heaven's Pavement

Earth's Treasure, Heaven's Pavement

Date: 10/01/2017 
It's used in everything from soda cans, to aircraft, to smartphones. It's light, strong, corrosion resistant, non-magnetic, non-toxic and naturally just good looking. We're talking about...
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Pastor Doug Batchelor: Hello, listening friends. Would you like to hear an amazing fact? It's used in everything from soda cans, to aircraft, to smartphones. It's light, strong, corrosion resistant, non-magnetic, non-toxic and naturally just good looking.

We're talking about aluminum, but if you live outside the United States, you call it out aluminium. This is because the British didn't think the elemental word aluminum was flashy enough, so they just added a vowel, the letter i, and they call it aluminium.

You see shortly before aluminum was first discovered in the early 19th Century, because it was so difficult to obtain, it was considered among the most precious metals on Earth.

At that time, it was worth more by weight than gold or platinum. In fact, because it was so precious, in 1884, the US government commissioned a nine-inch pyramid of the metal to use at the apex of the US Washington Monument. At 6.2 pounds, it was at the time, the largest single piece of solid aluminum ever cast.

Soon after, this research has found the new method to extract aluminum from common bauxite, and the price plunged. Scientists now know that aluminum is in fact among the most abundant minerals on Earth, making up about 8% of the world's landmass.

Perhaps a chin of surprises then in the Bible when it says gold, which is so precious in this world will be as common as asphalt in the new Earth.

Stay with us friends, we're going to learn more on this edition of Bible Answers Live.

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Voice-over 1: You're listening to Bible Answers Live, honest answers to your Bible questions.

Voice-over 2: Our phone lines are now open. If you have a Bible-related question, call us at 1-800 God Says. That's 1-800-463-7297. Now, let's join our host Pastor Doug Batchelor and our co-host Pastor John Ross.

Pastor Doug: Welcome listening friends to Bible Answers Live and we do have lines open if you have a Bible question or any question regarding what the Word of God says about living the Christian life, then we invite you to give us a call. That number 800 God Says, that's 800-463-7297. One more time, with your Bible questions, call now. Good chance to get your question on tonight's program 800-463-7297 and got well, yes, well, seven lines open. My name is Doug Batchelor.

Pastor John Ross: My name is John Ross. Good evening listening friends and Pastor Doug, let's begin the program with prayer.

Dear Father in heaven, we thank you that we have this time when we can open up the Bible and study together. As always, we want to invite the Holy Spirit to come and guide our hearts and our minds. Lead us Lord into a clear understanding of the Bible. For we ask this in Jesus name. Amen.

Pastor Doug: Amen.

Pastor John: Pastor Doug, when you opened the program but talking about well a fairly common material that is everything from as you mentioned, soda cans to probably airplane parts.

Aluminum, it's strong, it's light, it doesn't rust, and at one time, it was very, very expensive. Of course, it's not that way now but it was. [crosstalk]

Pastor Doug: Yes. It was like they say, it was worth more than gold because it was so hard to process and once they found that it was very common in bauxite, and it could be extracted, it just became very common.

I think most of the aluminum in the world comes from Australia right now. It's interesting there're several amazing facts that I even left out of the program about aluminum. Most of the high power electric lines that go around the country, they're aluminum, not because aluminum is the best conductor of electricity, copper really is, but it's so much lighter.

If they use copper, they'd have twice as many poles holding it up in the air because it's so much heavier. A lot of folks don't realize that.

Who was it? The Wright Brothers, when they first started using aluminum in aircraft engines. They were afraid their competitors were going to find out about their bright idea and they painted it all black so they'd think it was iron, but anyway, it's an amazing material.

One time, thought it was worth more than gold, and now, people throw them out of the window, the cans.

One more fact I heard about aluminum, since we're talking about it. They said aluminum, of course, is 100% recyclable. I think it only uses about 15% of the energy to recycle aluminum as it does to extract it from the earth and they said two-thirds of all the aluminum that has ever been produced is still in circulation because it's been recycled.

I thought that was also interesting but speaking of minerals and things that are rare now that may be common later, the Bible tells us that gold is very precious now but in heaven, it's going to be a pretty common material.

You can read in Revelation 21:21, "And the gates were of 12 pearls and each gate was made of a single pearl and the street of the city was pure gold, like transparent glass". They say the reason you see yellow in gold is 'cause there is a certain amount of of impurities in it and pure gold is almost looks like a mirror. It's almost transparent.

There was actually a time in the kingdom of Israel, when things were so prosperous that everything was made of gold.You can read in 1Kings10, during the time of Solomon, this is in verse 21 also, "And King Solomon's drinking vessels were of gold and all the vessels of the house of the forest of Lebanon" , this is somewhere else, "were of pure gold".

None were of silver. Silver was not considered as anything in the days of Solomon. It was like stones and so they recycled riches then. What the Bible says about gold shouldn't surprise anybody. I mean, it happened once with aluminum for us.

Maybe our friends listening would like to know more about that kingdom. It is not just pie in the sky, by-and-by, but this place that Christ is going to prepare is very real. We have a free offer for anyone that would like to be encouraged by what the Bible tells us about heaven.

Pastor John: The book is called 'Heaven: Is It For Real?' We'll be sending that to anybody who calls and asks. The number to call is 800-835-6747. That is the resource phone line. Just ask for the book called 'Heaven: Is It For Real?' I'll be happy to send that to you or you can read it for free online at the Amazing Facts website, amazingfacts.org.

If you have a Bible question, our phone line here to the studio is 800-463-7297. The number again is 800-463-7297.

We're going to the phone lines. Our first caller is Jenna, listening in Washington. Jenna, welcome to the program.

Jenna: Hi.

Pastor John: Hi, how are you doing?

Jenna: Pretty good. Thank you.

Pastor John: Your question?

Jenna: My question is, how do I know that my salvation is secure in God?

Pastor Doug: Well, first of all, if you follow the invitation that Jesus has given, His promises that if you come to Him, He will in no way cast you out and that if we renew our commitment with Christ each day, we can be sure God is going to keep His promises.

God keeps His promises, you have faith. Jesus said, "It will be to you according to your faith. If you believe His promises, you'll receive it" .

Don't let the devil scare you. The Bible says that, "He that has begun a good work in you will perform it" . There's also promise that God is the author and the finisher of our faith. Now, the key to winning the race is keep on running. If you slip and fall, don't stay down, get up.

You can read in the book of Hebrews 12, that when you run that race, you lay aside the sin and the weights that slow us down, and you look to Jesus, who is the author and finisher of your faith.

I actually have a book I can send you a free copy and it deals with assurance. How Do You Have Assurance As A Christian? Would you like a copy of that?

Jenna: Sure.

Pastor John: All right. Well, tell you what, we're going to give you another phone number. It's a free phone call. Just call and give them your contact information and we will send you that book on assurance.

Pastor Doug: The number to call is 800-835-6747. That is the resource phone line. Call and ask for the book written by Pastor Doug on the subject of assurance. How we can have assurance that our sins are forgiven. That we're part of God's family.

Sure to call and ask for that. We'll be happy to send that out to anybody who does. Our next caller is let's see. We have Stephen listening from Georgia. Stephen. Welcome to the program.

Stephen: Yes, thank you. Pastor, this is something that's pestered me for a while from Romans 8:6-8. "Because the carnal mind is enmity against God: this is opposed for it is not subject to the law of God, neither indeed can be". Could you help me with that a little bit?

Pastor Doug: Well, there's two different conditions that you find in the Bible, there's love and selfishness, two opposite notice. There is the spirit and the flesh. Now the Bible uses the words carnal, if you speak Latin or Spanish, the word carne means flesh.

I'll give you a quick little tip, in ancient Rome they used to have these terrible battles in the Coliseum and there was all kinds of death and bloodshed and gore and they called it carnage. Sometimes they called it a carnival and all it meant that there was a lot of flesh and blood shed a carnival, because the word carne means flesh.

We've all got the animal side of our natures, then we have the spiritual higher part of our natures. If we live for the animal side, like the lust of the flesh and the lust of the eyes and selfishness, we're going to be lost, but if through the power of Christ, we subdue the flesh and we live by the Spirit, walk in the Spirit, then we can end up doing the will of God. It's only through the spirit that we can do the will of God.

Stephen: Basically, it's just that the indwelling Spirit of Christ that gives us the power?

Pastor Doug: Yes, I'm sure there have been times where you thought, "Well, I feel like doing this, but I know it's not right", and so your spirit won over the flesh. Jesus never made a decision based on the flesh, He made His decisions based on the spirit.

Now you can be spiritual and know when it's time to eat, you need food, it's nourishment, you can be a spiritual person and fulfil the natural sexual desires within a marriage and there's nothing unspiritual about that.

Being controlled by the Spirit and going against the law, or being controlled by the flesh and going against the law of God, that's sin.

Stephen : When the flesh, so to speak, attacks you, then as was true and hollow, just pure and lovely, think on these things. We ask the Holy Spirit to give us the power to draw out these thoughts, these kind of thoughts, the spiritual thoughts?

Pastor Doug: Yes, exactly. When Jesus was in the garden of Gethsemane and he was praying intensely, "Father, if there's any way, let this cup pass from me". He recoils from what He knew was going to be the torture and mostly the separation from His father, but He said, "Look, I want to do the will of God, not the lust of the flesh" .

In fact a final good verse that we can do on this is in 1st John 2:15 where it says, "Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world, for all that's of the world is going to pass away. The lust of the flesh, the pride of life and the lust of the eyes, but he that does the will of God will abide forever". We don't want to live life carnally, we want to live life spiritually.

Stephen: God's word is as well then yes.

Pastor Doug: One more verse I'll give you is if you look at the very end of chapter seven, it says, "Who will deliver me from this body of death," in verse 24. We've got this battle between the spirit and the flesh. He says, "I thank God through Jesus Christ our Lord, we're delivered". Then it says, chapter eight, "We do not walk according to the flesh, but according to the Spirit".

Stephen: "The just shall live by faith and then the power of Christ".

Pastor Doug: Sounds like, yes, you've got it. You're on the right track.

Pastor John: We have a book called Life In The Spirit that talks about this very thing and we'll be happy to send that to you. Let's see, we have Stephen. Just call and we'll be happy to send that to you. The number is (800) 835-6747, you can ask for the book called Life In The Spirit and we'll send it to anybody who calls and asks.

If you have a Bible question our phone line here to the studio is (800) 463-7297, that's 800 God says 463-7297. Our next call is Louis listening in North Carolina, Louis welcome to the program.

Louis: Thank you. Good evening and thank you for your ministry.

Pastor Doug: How can we help you tonight?

Louis: Hello?

Pastor Doug: Yes, are you there?

Louis: Okay, good. My questions in concerning comparing Joshua chapter 10 and chapter 15 with Judges chapter 1, was the Bezek possibly in the valley of Ashkelon?

Pastor Doug: Let me see, I'm going to those verses again. First, he said go to Joshua. What is it?

Louis: Chapter 10 and chapter 15, then comparing that with Judges chapter 1. It talks about the southern conquest of the children of Israel after the battle at Gibeon with the five kings mentioned in Joshua Chapter 10 and then in chapter 10, Joshua Chapter 10 verses say 11 on talks about going to Bethhoron and further down.

Pastor Doug: It says Bethhoron and the Lord cast down large hail stones from heaven as far as Azekah?

Louis: Yes.

Pastor Doug: Then you're wondering if that matches up with chapter 15?

Louis: Well, Judges chapter one, it talks about Bezek and how the children of Israel had met him at Bezek and he fled, they took him to Jerusalem.

In Joshua Chapter 10, talks about how they pursued them as far as Azekah and then returned to Gilgal. If they were in Azekah and they went to Gilgal, Jerusalem would be on the pathway, on a direct route. I'm wondering if Bezek was possibly in the valley of Ashkelon, where the hailstones were cast down.

Pastor Doug: It says, "And they found Adonibezek in Bezek and fought against him and they defeated the Canaanites and the Perizzites and Adonibezek fled and they pursued him".

This is a different battle. I don't think Adonibezek is connected with Azekah that you find in Joshua. Is that your principal question?

Louis: Yes, I'm just trying to place where Bezek is.

Pastor John: Well, Azekah, they have done archaeological excavations and they did find the site that they call Azekah that's referred here in Joshua Chapter 10, at least. It's got a modern name today.

Apparently after the Babylonian exile, some of the Jews went back and settled in that area. Let's see, today it's known as Tellzakariyeh, it's T-E-L-L Z-A-K-A-R-I-Y-E-H if you want to look that up.

Pastor Doug: Where tell always means Hill.

Louis: My question is more towards the location of where the Bezek is, though.

Pastor Doug: You know what you might find is-- Do you have any Bible software?

Louis: No, I don't.

Pastor Doug: Do you have a computer?

Louis: Other than just online tools.

Pastor Doug: Some of the online tools are very good. There is a free program you can download called e-Sword and there are commentaries in e-Sword that are really good. What I do sometimes is I just click on those and it actually has atlases and you look at what the commentators say about the places and they've got some tremendous history. You check out three or four of those ancient commentators, I find they're often just right on with the location of those places.

Pastor John: It's a maps.

Pastor Doug: Yes, but that's a whole study. It's real hard on radio, I'll just be honest with you, to help people visualize maps. We're saying places and people are going, "Where's that?" That was, I think the southern part of Israel, where they first enter the promised land. Thank you.

Pastor John: Thanks for your call. Our next call is David listening in Texas. David, welcome to the program.

David: Thanks for having me on. How are y'all tonight?

Pastor John: Doing great and your question?

David: Yes. I was wondering about 1st Corinthians 11:13-15. I've heard people bring up this chapter before about women having prayer shawls or veils or that type of thing. What I haven't understood is, I've never heard anyone reference these other three verses. I don't know if you want to read it for the listeners or not.

Pastor Doug: Sure. I'll start with verse 13. "Judge among yourselves, is it proper for a woman to pray to God with their head uncovered? Does not even nature itself teach you that if a man has long hair, it's a dishonor to him but if a woman has long hair, it's a glory to her, for her hair is given to her as a covering". Then he goes on to say, “But if anyone is contentious about this, we have no such custom nor does the churches of God".

David: My question is, when I've read that, I've always understood the covering to be the long hair itself, like in verse 15. When I read the rest of that passage, starting, of course, up higher in verse three and four, I've always seen it, basically saying, if a man has short hair, that's okay. But if he has long hair, that's a shame to him, and so long hair, he shouldn't have his head covered with long hair. Meanwhile, if a woman does not have her head covered with long hair, she may as well be shaved. That verse six or something. I've understood it that way. I don't quite understand where people are getting the fabric in there. I guess 'cause of Middle Eastern culture, I suppose, but I don’t know.

Pastor Doug: The idea was that when they came into the presence of God to worship, they should come humbly. Because a woman's hair was her glory-- We ought to cover our own glory, so only God's glory is seen. Now, I'm just telling you what the thinking was.

When a woman came into a place of worship, and especially if she was going to be praying publicly or upfront, she's got her head covered as a sign of humility, 'cause a woman's hair was glorious and beautiful. Women, typically their hair grows better than the head of men, and certainly last longer than most men. This was just an ancient tradition.

Paul was just saying, “Because we're Christians, in keeping with the customs of the Jews and even the Roman Empire, there ought to be a sign of humility.” Now, most of the—I’m sorry, go ahead.

David: I'm sorry. You wouldn't keep quite long hair as the

Pastor Doug: No. I've heard some read it that way. I don't think Paul would write a chapter saying, "Make sure that women don't go in with their heads shaved. I think he was saying he was going along with the idea of a woman having her head covered.

We should be careful not to build a doctrine unless you have other verses. There's one place where it talks about Rebecca veiling herself when she first met Isaac, and there are a few verses about veils.

It was a custom in the East for women to veil themselves and veil their beauty when we came into worship God, so men would not be distracted by the beauty of the women, when they come to look at the beauty of God. This was a custom. You don't hear too many.

There are some churches that are, orthodox that practices, there's certainly nothing wrong with it. I think we need to be careful about building a doctrine with one verse.

David: Fair enough. I appreciate your input.

Pastor John: Thank you. I appreciate it. Next call is Sharon listening from New York. Sharon, welcome to the program.

David: God bless. I would like to know what it mean in Exodus 4:23-25.

Pastor Doug: All right. I'll read this for the friends that are listening. I believe this is a story when Moses is on his way back. It says, “On the way to the encampment, the Lord met him and sought to kill him".

Now, Moses is going back to meet with the people of Israel. Then Zipporah, his wife took a sharp stone, and cut off the foreskin of her son, and cast it at Moses feet, and said, “Surely, you are a bloody man to me". He, the angel, let him go. Then she said, “You are a husband of blood because of the circumcision".

Now, the way I've understood this, and I'm satisfied with this answer, Moses, of course, he was born a Jew, and probably his mother had him circumcised when he was eight days old. She didn't put him up for adoption. I think he was three months old before she put him in the river. When he fled into the wilderness and lived with the Midianites, they may not have been practicing circumcision, even though they were distantly related to Abraham.

Moses failed to circumcise the two sons that he had with Zipporah. When he went to Egypt, he initially took his wife and at least one of his sons had not been circumcised. They had had a family argument about it. She had said, “This is barbaric. Why are we doing this?” He said, “It's the covenant that God made with Abraham".

Well, he was listening to his wife instead of the Lord. God said, “Look, you're the priest of the family. You need to do this".

He kept neglecting his duty, and God stopped him before he ever got to Israel. “Look, I've called you to do a great work among my people. How are you going to be a witness among my people, if you're not even leading in your own home?”

Finally, his wife said, “Okay, you're a bloody man and Jesus is barbaric”. But she circumcised his son. I'm hoping he was young at that time. Then God said, “Okay, now that you submitted to my covenant, I'm going to let you go on with your mission".

That's the explanation that I've heard that makes sense to me.

David: Thank you very much. Now, could you help me out with the word matrix in Chapter 13:12?

Pastor Doug: The word matrix, it means the womb. It means the womb. They used to say whatever--

David: It means the womb?

Pastor Doug: Yes. It means to come forth from. Typically, it's talking about when a baby was born. It uses whether it's a goat or sheep, it says, “Whatever comes from the matrix, meaning out of the womb, of the animal, the firstborn was to be offered to the Lord, at least committed to the Lord". That's what the word-- By the way, since you asked that, in the Bible, you'll hear the word Gog and Magog. Magog means from the matrix of Gog or the children of Gog. There's another place where you find that prefix used.

Hey, I appreciate your question. Maybe, with that call, I should also remind friends, we still have lots of lines open. If you've got a Bible question, good chance you'll get on tonight. Just pick up the phone and call. We probably get six or seven lines open right now. Any Bible question, we will do our best. Who do we have lined up, Pastor Ross?

Pastor John: I think we’re coming on a break. We might not have time to take another call.

Pastor Doug: One minute for break. You know what; maybe before we take another call, people can call in now, we'll get your call right after the break. But should maybe tell people about--

Pastor John: Absolutely. Something exciting happening starting on 4th November on the East coast.

Pastor Doug: We do this radio program once a week. It's live. It's on stations and satellite radio across the country and other parts of the world. Most of what Amazing Facts does these days is television.

We're on a number of major networks. We're going to be doing a large program coming from the Washington area, the DC area, beginning on November 3rd, it's called Foundations of Faith. Right there after, the celebration of the great reformation.

We're going to be talking about some things. If Martin Luther was alive today, he'd probably be telling folks about a lot of doctrines that have been neglected. Don't go away.

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Pastor Doug: Welcome back, listening friends. Thanks for standing by those who've been on the ride with us. If you joined along the way, this is Bible Answers Live. We do our best to answer your live Bible questions.

We never know how the Lord is going to lead this program. We just pray for guidance. We look at the word together. Lines are open if you want to give us a call with Bible question. 800, God says that's 800-463-7297. One more time 800-463-7297. I am Doug Batchelor.

Pastor John: My name is John Ross and we're ready to go to the next caller. We have Marjorie listening from Michigan. Marjorie, welcome to the program. You're on the air.

Marjorie: Thank you. It's good to hear your voices pastors.

Pastor Doug: Well, likewise.

Marjorie: Well, thank you. I have a question about Gabriel visiting Mary. He explained to her that she has been chosen by God to have, to conceive the baby Jesus. He said that the Holy Ghost was going to come upon her but I understood that it was all three were going to be present, God and the Holy Ghost and Jesus in the conception. According to Luke chapter one, verse 34, it starts and gives all three being present at that time.

Pastor Doug: Well this is, you're talking about when Mary speaks and she says, "How can this be?" The angel says that, "The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the highest will overshadow you. Therefore, that holy one who is born of you will be called the Son of God" .

That is a great point you have mentioned of the Holy Spirit. You have the Holy One which is Jesus, the Son of God born of the highest, which is the Father, all three are mentioned in that verse.

Marjorie: Yes.

Pastor Doug: Are you wondering, does that mean that all three were in Christ or all three involved in the conception?

Marjorie: All three involved in the conception.

Pastor Doug: Well, all three are definitely in the verse. I don't know that that means--

Marjorie: Yes, they are. There's three separate but one, well, if you want to look at it that way. My point is the minister that was talking about it said that God was not visible at that time, and I don't think he was right.

Pastor Doug: He said that God was not visible at that time?

Marjorie: Right.

Pastor Doug: Well, the Lord appeared to several people in the Old Testament. Jacob said, "I've seen God and I am preserved". Moses saw God, and Abraham saw God and they saw God, probably it's what they call a christiathony and they probably saw God the Son His glory veiled.

No man Jesus had a seen the Father at anytime and the Spirit is the Spirit. He sometimes appears as water, fire, wind.

Marjorie: The whole schmear, right?

Pastor Doug: Yes.

Marjorie: I honestly do believe that all three were present at the conception of Jesus.

Pastor Doug: Well, I have no problem believing that.

Marjorie: It's just that way that's read.

Pastor Doug: I know, I don't see anything wrong with what you're saying. Now, the conception of Jesus would be that supernatural moment that we, it is a mystery to us, how God, somehow the essence of God went into the egg of Mary.

I even heard one Christian, Jewish scholar say that there was a little bit of an artificial insemination that happened that God also took something from Joseph, because why does it give the genealogy of Joseph? It says the conception [crosstalk] he was also of the house of David.

Marjorie: He was of Judah.

Pastor Doug: Yes, he was of the line of David. It is a mystery. We got to be careful not to be too dogmatic about the incarnation.

There's two great mysteries that are mentioned in the Bible. One is the mystery of godliness, how God could be incarnate in a man. The other is called the mystery of iniquity. Why man would want to be God and the devil would want to be God.

But anyway, we appreciate that good question. You've actually got me thinking about something that-- you gave me a verse for another debate I'm doing. I appreciate that.

Pastor John: Our next caller is Pete listening from Arizona. Pete, welcome to the program.

Pete: Yes, hello.

Pastor John: Hi, Pete. How are you doing?

Pete: Hi. I'm doing fine. How you're doing?

Pastor John: Great. What's your question?

Pete: Okay. My question is, I've seen several of these movies like Passion of the Christ and all of those, and all of the other Life of Jesus movies, and they've mentioned actually how the rope that Judas hung himself with was the rope that was around the donkey's neck that Jesus rode in on. Is there any link to that or any meaning? Or is it just something that's really in the movies?

Pastor Doug: That's a colourful tradition that has been repeated. There's not a shred of Bible evidence other than legends that came hundreds of years after the Bible. There's not a shred of Bible evidence that says anything about the rope that was around the donkey and the rope around Judas. I think it would be very interesting to try to piece together.

[laughs]

What difference would that make? I guess some people are trying to make a point that Judas made a donkey's decision but yes, there's no Bible truth to that.

There's a number of interesting legends. You'll have legends about Barabas been converted and they make movies about it, but there's nothing in the Bible that says that.

I don't know, Pastor Ross, if you haven't run anything that talks about the rope around the donkey and the news of Judas.

I don't even think it says he used the word news doesn't appear just as he hung himself, so we don't know what he used. He could have hung himself with sheets.

Yes. The one thing to follow up commentary is in the book of Acts chapter one. Peter says that whatever Judas used to hang himself broke and he fell. He must have hung himself from a high place, he fell, and he was dashed on the ground. It wasn't a pretty picture. Something like Jezebel fell out the window, Judas fell. Anyway, thank you very much for your question, Pete.

Pastor John: Next caller is Cliff listening from Florida. Cliff, welcome to the program.

Cliff: Hi, yes, thanks for taking my call. My question is in the New Testament where it talks about the new covenant will be based on better promises.

Why does it say that the new promises are based on that the law is now written on our hearts versus Old Covenant is written on stone, and because now it's written on our hearts, that we will have a willing desire to keep the commandments as we grow in deeper love with the Lord, it will flow from us naturally versus the Old Covenant keeping the law was more out of fear and obligation versus now it's out of love [crosstalk] in our hearts?

Pastor Doug: Yes, well, the right reason to keep the law has always been love. If you look in the 10 commandments, it says and I believe it's the second commandment, pastor Ross, where it says showing mercy and thousands of them that love me and keep my commandments.

Right in the 10 commandments is the key. Love me and keep my commandments. But a lot of people haven't gotten that. They didn't get it in Old Testament time and you probably know legalistic groups that don't get it now. When Jesus said the two great commandments are love the Lord and love your neighbour, Jesus was quoting the Old Testament.

You're reading Leviticus 19:18, it says that, "You should love your neighbor as yourself". You read in Deuteronomy chapter six, "You'll love the Lord with all your heart, mind, soul and strength" .

Loving the Lord and loving your neighbour are old covenants, but when he talks about the better promises, what you'll notice the big difference is when God gave the children of Israel the 10 commandments, they made a promise.

The nation said, "All that God said we will do, we will do it". Well, they didn't. They were trusting in their own strength. Then you get to the New Testament, God says the new covenant is I will, it won't be based on your promise. It'll be based on my promise.

I will put my law in your hearts, instead of you saying we will, God says I will. That's the better promise. The promise of God is infinitely better than the promise of people.

Pastor John: Of course, the new covenant is actually predating to the old covenant. If you look at it, the first reference of change of heart is found all the way back in Genesis when God says, "I'll put enmity between thee and the woman, between my seed and her seed" . That is the law written upon the heart. God made a covenant with Israel but they didn't trust in him to keep the law. They said, well, we're going to do it on our own. That's why it failed. What were you saying?

Cliff: That makes a lot of sense. I mean that Jesus is the better promise because he kept the law. We can't. That answers that question, but the follow up, what does it mean then that he writes the law in our heart? What does that mean for us

Does that just mean that-- To me, that means this was written on our hearts. We grow in deeper love with the Lord. We're going to just have a greater desire to-- He said, "If you love me, you will keep my commandments".

As we [crosstalk] deeper love. We'll have a desire to want to keep them not so unlikely, "Oh gee. I've got to keep the commandments that have some obligations, more of love. [crosstalk]

Pastor Doug: Yes. Well, we still want to keep the law. Keep in mind, I think I heard you say something. Well, we can't keep it. It's true we've all sinned. I believe that the Bible says, "Through Christ all things are possible" . When he puts his law in our heart, we can do what would otherwise be impossible.

Cliff: not in the hearts [crosstalk]

Pastor Doug: When it's in the heart-- I know too many men, they're going to tell their wives, "I know I promised not to commit adultery, but I can't keep the law". Not too many wives will accept that. They're going to say, "You better keep the law".

There are things that God can change our hearts. I praise the Lord. I used to use drugs and drink. God changed me. I praise the lord. That's it.

Cliff: The depth of the love is what keeps the desire to keep the commandments. The [crosstalk] of love, basically. That makes a lot of sense. [crosstalk].

Pastor Doug: Exactly. We've got a lesson that really spells this out. It is a tremendous lesson. Anyone that wants to better understand the relationship between the law and grace, we've got a lesson called Written In Stone. We'll send you a free copy, if you just call the line.

Pastor John: The number to call is 800-835-6747. You can ask for the study guide called Written in Stone. It's actually part of a whole series of lessons that Amazing Facts has and you can enroll for free right there when you call.

You can enroll in our Bible school and we'll be happy to send you a number of lessons dealing with important Bible truth. The number is 800-835-6747. Just ask for the study guide called Written in Stone. If you have a Bible question a phone line here to the studio is 800-463-7297.

Our next call is Stephanie listening from New Mexico. Stephanie, welcome to the program.

Stephanie: Hi, thank you very much for taking my call.

Pastor Doug: Yes, thanks for calling.

Stephanie: It's ironic, the caller previous to me. My question was basically similar. In 1st John chapter 2:3-6 where it talks about, "If we know him, we will keep his commands. He who says I know him and does not keep his commands is a liar. The truth is not in him. But whoever keeps the word, truly the love of God is perfected in him. By this we know that we are in him. He who says he abides in me ought to also walk as he walked".

I have this one area where I'm just not-- I don't have self control, and I'm sinning. Then it takes me to Matthew 7: 21-23 where it talks about, "Not everyone who says Lord, Lord shall enter the kingdom of God, and how he'll say he never knew you. Those who practice lawlessness" .

I'm like, I don't want to be one of those people who is told I never knew you. I do love the Lord and I do strive to keep his commands and be obedient and walk the walk and not just talk to talk. There's that one area and I just don't--

Pastor Doug: You're struggling.

Stephanie: Yes. I don't want to be the one that told I never knew you.

PStor Doug: Well, I think that-- First thing you want to know is, it is possible for you to do what God asks you to do. God will help you do what he wants you to do. "Do not grow weary in well doing", the Bible says.

"As long as we're in this body in this life, there is going to be a struggle with sin and temptation. Praise the Lord and the new earth". We're not going to have that struggle. There is going to be a battle.

Paul said, "I fought the good fight. I finished the race. I've kept the faith. There's a battle. He said, "We wrestle against principalities and powers in heavenly places. There's a wrestling match. There's a fight".

Don't be discouraged. Sometimes you fall in the battle. Believe that God can finish what he started in your life. When you sin, don't become comfortable and say, well, that's just my weak spot and accept it. Repent and tell the Lord.

If you fall again, don't get back up, repent again. There's this place in the Bible where it says God cast seven devils out of Mary Magdalene. I don't think he did it all at one time. It makes it sound like seven different times she fell. The Bible says, "A righteous man may fall seven times yet he rises again" . Don't get discouraged.

What I tell people is, Stephanie, I struggled with smoking. I mean, I used all kinds of different drugs. I'm not going to brag about but for me, smoking was the hardest thing. I quit smoking so many times. It's like Mark Twain said, "Quitting smoking is easy. I did it 100 times".

I quit smoking so many times, and then I'd go back and I'd get discouraged. Then I quit again. I went back and I quit again. I went back. through them away and I didn't go take them out of the garbage can. It was a struggle and went on a long time. Couple of years.

Finally, by the grace of God, I threw him away 40 years ago, and I never had another one. Not once. Don't quit quitting. You know what I'm saying? You'll be so happy when you get the victory.

Stephanie: Exactly [crosstalk] I know I keep striving. I'm like that. In Romans whatever, six to eight where it talks about [crosstalk].

Pastor Doug: Yes. You know what you want to do and you do the thing you don't want to do.

Stephanie: Exactly. I appreciate--

Pastor Doug: Don't forget what Paul then writes in Romans eight. "I praise God now that we get the victory through Jesus Christ. We no longer walk after the flesh, but we can walk after the Spirit". We can pray for that victory. I think God will encourage your heart.

Stephanie: Thank you so much.

Pastor John: Stephanie, we got a book that I think you would appreciate if you just call and ask for. It's called Tips For Resisting Temptation. Of course, is something that we can all benefit from. We'll be happy to send that book to you.

All you're left to do is just give us a call on the resource phone line. That number is 800-835-6747 and ask for the book called Tips for Resisting Temptation. That number again is 800-835-6747.

Our next call is Larry listening in California. Larry, welcome to the program. Larry, are you there?

Larry: I am. How are you doing?

Pastor Doug: Great. Your question tonight.

Larry: My question tonight was about suicide.

Pastor Doug: What would you like to know?

Larry: Well, I want to know what the Bible says about it. My wife, almost 20 years, 11 years ago committed suicide because she was under depression. She was an alcoholic and other things. She had a behavior that was-- I'm trying to kind of think of the word here.

Pastor Doug: She had a up and down bipolar.

Larry: Yes, she was bipolar. I didn't find this out except through a friend of a friend whose wife was bipolar and she told me-- That woman told me that, "Yes. The only reason I decided to live with is 'cause I had two kids. She made the decision to break through the crust of the-- God damn it, what I'm I trying to say.

Pastor Doug: Well, are you wondering can a suicide be saved? Is that your question?

Larry: My question is, yes, can a suicide be saved?

Pastor Doug: All right. Now, that's an important question. There's two ways I always like to approach that question. One is, I think there will be people who went through tremendous mental trials and may have been under terrible duress from physical suffering and they took their lives. They were not themselves at the moment, and because God looks on the heart and he considers the circumstances if someone that may be committed their lives to the Lord, they love the Lord, but just were overwhelmed in a moment of weakness or may have even chemical imbalances that we don't understand, and they took their lives.

I think we've got to be careful not to close the door and say they couldn't be saved. Then there are people who are listening right now that think, "I have thought about checking out so many times".

Me personally, I used to toy with suicide even as a kid and the teenager you get so discouraged and you get the hormones going up and down and the little problems you think the whole world's crashing in around you. I frequently thought about suicide.

One of the things that kept me from it is just my curiosity. I thought I might miss something tomorrow, but for a person who believes, you've got to realize that suicide is out of context with God's will.

If it's a sin to commit murder, well that would include murdering yourself. It probably would not bode well for a person if the last act of your life is self murder.

If a person gets discouraged, and you're a believer and you think, "Well, if I just commit suicide then I'll be with the Lord". Actually what you can do is lose all your options and seal yourself in a very bad situation so you wake up in the wrong resurrection. You're permanently lost.

Solomon says, "Where there's life, there's hope", and that's an Ecclesiastes.

I would say that, "Can a person who committed suicide be saved?" I believe there are cases where that will be the exception, but a person should never presume to do that because in the most cases, it represents hopelessness and they've lost faith, and without faith it's impossible to please God.

That's a difficult question. I hope that helps a little bit and makes sense Larry.

Now, I wrote an article on this. If you go to Amazing Facts and type in Doug Batchelor suicide, you'll probably see the article I wrote on this and it may give you some more verses, and we appreciate your call.

Pastor John: Next caller is Cheryl listening from Minnesota, or Michigan rather. Cheryl in Michigan, welcome to the program.

Cheryl: Hello.

Pastor Doug: Hi, and your question?

Cheryl: Well, I am wondering about what happens when you die, but specifically, since it's a huge topic, what about angels? You hear they escort you to heaven, but if you are really actually going into a state of dormancy where you'll be resurrected at the second coming, then the angels aren't-- where are they escorting you to? Are they just there for comfort or are they always there? Is that not even biblical?

Pastor Doug: All right, great question. I can have pastor Ross look something up for me. "He'll send forth his angels to gather together his elect". I don't know if that's Matthew or Luke or Mark. There are three places where Jesus talks about his second coming.

The Bible does say that, "The Lord will descend from Heaven with a shout", this is first Thessalonians chapter four, "and the triump of God, and the archangel and the day that Christ arrives".

Now if all of us have guardian angels, I believe at the resurrection, those angels, they've marked the spot where we last were and they'll be there to join us in the resurrection and escort us up to the Lord.

Pastor John: Yes, it's actually two references. The one is Matthew 24:31, talking of Jesus at the second coming, and he'll send his angels with a great sound of a trumpet. They will gather together his elect from the four winds, from one end of Heaven even to the other". The same thing is also said in Mark 13:27.

Pastor Doug: Yes. I think the angels are involved in the second coming, both for the living and to escort, if you will, the resurrected.

The idea that people are resurrected and one by one the angels carry them to Heaven, first Thessalonians says, "We go to Heaven together. We're caught up with them together, and we go to glory". There will be angels there.

Cheryl: Okay, thank you. What about the presence of angels at that moments just before final death? Being at your bedside, I guess that could be your guardian angels or--

Pastor Doug: Yes. There are a number of places where in history people who are believers that were dying said they could see angels, and I have no reason to doubt that. I believe angels are around us all the time.

The Bible talks about Moses when he died and says, "God buried him". Well, God probably used his angels, and angels were there, of course, guarding the way to the tree of life.

Having angels nearby when believers passed away. I think that they were around the cross when Jesus died. We shouldn't doubt that they would be around believers when they're breathing their last. Yes. I'm trying to think of some verses. I can't think of too many, but there's no reason not to believe that.

Cheryl: I think what mostly prompted my question is-- and I've got total answer. Thank you, I'm very satisfied. Is the idea of this-- I think many people just think of being escorted. I think that comes out of the blink of the eye and you're going to be going straight.

Pastor Doug: The resurrection will seem like the twinkling in the eye for us. In a moment the twinkling of eye we'll be transformed. We have time for one more question. I'm looking at the We have a quick question, let's see who's left.

Pastor John: All right, we got Anthony in New York. Anthony, we've got a few moments in your question this evening.

Anthony: Hi, good afternoon. My question has to do with someone who is a Christian, but lately they have made a decision not to celebrate Christmas, not to celebrate Easter, not to celebrate the resurrection because they see these holidays as pagan holidays.

Pastor Doug: I've got to get to an answer. I'm going to have to cut you off, so let me give you an answer real quick on that.

First of all, we got a book. We'll send you a free copy and it is called Baptized Paganism. There's nothing wrong with a believer wanting to celebrate the resurrection, there's no command to do that.

There's certainly nothing wrong with a believer wanting to praise God or remember the birth of Christ while Jesus probably was most certainly not born the 25th of December. There's, I think, a lot of Bible evidence. It was more like the fall.

If a person wants to focus on some of the pagan trappings of these things, there is some history where these things were connected with the spring solstice and the winter solstice, but that's where you use Romans 14, "If you're going to regard today, regard it to the Lord."

Hey, I apologize we had to make your question so short Anthony, we're about to go off the air. Listening friends, we do have a couple of final announcements I want you to hear.

Don't forget to tune in to our special foundations of faith meetings that are beginning on November 3rd 3ABN, Hope Channel, Amazing Facts TV. Go to the website, amazingfacts.org.

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