Prayers to Heaven

Date: 12/30/2018 
Without question, the Voyager 1 and 2 spacecraft are among the most successful scientific expeditions in history. First launched in 1977, and designed to last about five years, they are both still communicating with earth 40 years later.
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Pastor Doug Batchelor: Hello friends, would you like to hear an amazing fact? Without question, the Voyager 1 and 2 spacecraft are among the most successful scientific expeditions in history. First launched in 1977, and designed to last about five years, they are both still communicating with earth 40 years later. The Voyagers gave us some of our first close up photos of the great planets in the furthest reaches of our solar system. They explored Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, Neptune, as well as a number of other moons and asteroids.

Just in case they encounter intelligent life, both Voyager 1 and 2 spacecraft are carrying with them a gold record with photos and drawings, spoken greetings in many languages, music and earth sounds. However, the extraterrestrials will have to figure out how to build a record player to hear it. Both of the Voyager craft have now left our solar system and they're traveling through interstellar space at more than 38,000 miles an hour.

Powered by a radioisotope thermal geoelectric generator, Voyager 1 may keep exploring space for another 10 to 20 years before its power runs out. Because they're over 13 billion miles from Earth, it takes over 16 hours for scientists to receive data from the Pro. On the other hand, the Bible says that your prayers reach heaven instantly. Stay with us friends, we're going to learn more on this edition of Bible Answers Live.

Automated: You're listening to the Bible Answers Live, honest answers to your Bible questions. This broadcast is a previously recorded episode. To receive any of the Bible resources mentioned in this evening's program, call 800-835-6747, once again, that's 800-835-6747. Now, let's Join our host, Pastor Doug Batchelor.

Pastor Doug: Welcome, listening friends. If you have a Bible question, that's what this program is all about. Just pick up your phone. We have lines wide open right now. Excellent opportunity to get your call on tonight's program. That number, once again 800-GOD-SAYS. You got a pencil, 800-463-7297. Yes, we are live. We think this is the best format and medium for radio. We don't talk about romance or finance unless it's biblical finance but we talk about the Word of God and any questions about living the Christian life. Lines are open.

Here's the number once more, 800-463-7297. I'm Doug Batchelor. Pastor Ross has the night off. We're going to start the program with a word of prayer. Loving Lord, we just thank you that we can know that when we talk to you, you hear us instantly. It's faster than the speed of sound or the speed of light. It's the speed of prayer. Lord, I pray that you will just look down right now on this broadcast this evening and bless with your spirit. We pray that the questions that are asked and the answers that are given are all in harmony with the word of truth. We pray these things in Jesus name. Amen.

We started out at the beginning of the program talking about prayer. I want to remind you, we do have lines open. One more time, 800-GOD-SAYS, that's 800-463-7297 brings your question into the radio program tonight, 800-463-7297. We spoke at the beginning about this incredible journey of the Voyager 1 and the Voyager 2 spacecraft. It really is pretty amazing when you think that there's something that man has made now that has gone beyond the solar system. It's escaped the gravitational pull of the sun, and it can conceivably go on for millions of years at the speed it's traveling before it will really collide with anything. It was built with technology that we would laugh at now, from 1977.

Basically, they're powered by a little mini nuclear reactors. When I heard that the battery of the Voyager spacecrafts are still operating, I thought, "Well, I'd like some of those batteries in my car and my other devices." As fast as those things are traveling, your prayers travel much faster. The Bible tells us even before we call, He will answer. Now it's important to pray but Jesus tells us He knows what things we have need of even before we pray.

One time the disciples saw Jesus rising from prayer and He was walking away, and they could see that His face was glowing after communion with His father. In awe they said to Jesus, "Teach us to pray." Now you know how Jesus responded. He gave them what we commonly think of as the Lord's Prayer. Now you find that in both the Gospel of Matthew and the Gospel of Luke. In Matthew's version, it says, "Our Father," and first of all, Jesus says, "In this manner pray." It's certainly not wrong to repeat the Lord's Prayer, but he didn't say, "Just repeat this prayer."

He said, "Pray in this manner." The Lord's Prayer is really an outline for our prayers, beginning by addressing God, "The Father, reverently, hallowed be thy name, Your kingdom come," keeping the big picture of our work in this world to share His kingdom, "Your will be done." Now, there's seven petitions in the Lord's Prayer. Three of those petitions that are God, the other four petitions that deal with our relationship with our fellow man.

Then it says, "Give us this day our daily bread. Forgive us our debts as we forgive our debtors and do not lead us into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one." Some of you listening may remember that just a week or so ago, the Pope said that he thinks that the translation of the Lord's prayer in at least Italian, English and many other languages, is not very accurate, where it says, "Lead us not into temptation." It makes it sound like God wants to tempt us, and we have to beg Him not to. It actually is saying, "Lead us away from our natural leaning to temptation. Then of course, "Deliver us from the evil one, for yours is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever."

The Lord's Prayer is a beautiful pattern for prayer. There's a lot we can learn about God and our needs in this prayer. Now, I've written a book that I'm going to share with anybody that calls and asks for tonight. It's a book called The beautiful secrets of prayer. If you'd like to get a copy of that book, you just tell them that you want my book on prayer. They'll be happy to send that to you, and it will, I believe, strengthen your faith and just deepen your relationship with the Lord.

If you call the resource number, ask for the book Teach us to pray. Here's the number again. This is for the book, 800-835-6747. This is for the resource, 835-6747, that's Toll-Free 800. If you want to call in with your questions, we still have plenty of lines open 800-GOD-SAYS, 800-463-7297. With that, we're going to go to the phones. I'm going to talk to Rosarita. Is that right?

Rosetta: Rosetta.

Pastor Doug: Rosetta. I'm sorry and welcome, you're on Bible Answers Live.

Rosetta: Hi, Pastor Batchelor. I wanted to know about Ezekiel chapter 37.

Pastor Doug: Okay. What verses?

Rosetta: Verse 19. Is that information about David, a metaphor or an expected future event?

Pastor Doug: All right. Let me get there and I'll read it for everybody. Most of our listeners are riding in the car but let's see here, Ezekiel, Chapter 37, you said Verse 19, "He said to them, thus says the Lord God; surely, I will take the stick of Joseph which is in the hand of Ephraim, and the tribes of Israel, his companions, and I will join them with it, with the stick of Judah, and make them one stick. And wherever they have gone, they shall no longer be two nations, nor shall they ever be divided into two kingdoms." Again, is that the verse you want?

Rosetta: A little more.

Pastor Doug: "And they shall not defile themselves any more with their idols, nor with their detestable things, nor with any of their transgressions, but I'll deliver them from all their dwelling places in which I bring them." Then it says, "My servant David shall be king over them." Is that the part you're wondering about?

Rosetta: Yes. Is that a metaphor or a future event?

Pastor Doug: It is a metaphor. Now, even in heaven, David will be resurrected. David's going to be in heaven, but Jesus was always the one that David looked to as his Lord. Even David prophesied, "Let me put your enemies beneath your footstool." David always understood that the Messiah would be the ultimate king of Israel. Jesus is referred to as the son of David and it says, "I will give you the throne of your father David." A prophecy about Jesus. When the blind men came and asked for healing they said, "Son of David have mercy on me."

All the Jews understood that the Messiah would be from the line of David and so when it says, "David my servant will be king over them."Iit means a descendant from the house of David. Let me explain why it says all that. You notice it talked about Joseph and Judah, talked about these two sticks, I'll join them together. After the time of Solomon, the nation of Judah where David reigned, Judah, Benjamin and Levi, they were separated from the Northern Kingdom. There was a civil war and because of this civil war, they were separated right up until the Babylonian captivity.

The Northern Kingdom never recognized the sons of David as king, but it's telling us in heaven they'll no longer be two nations but they'll once again be a united people.

It's talking here about spiritual as well as anything, "and they'll be one nation." It is a metaphor for Jesus. Jesus in the book of Revelation is called the son of David, the throne and the keys of David the father are given to Jesus.

Rosetta: I appreciate that explanation and thank you very much, Pastor Batchelor. God bless you.

Pastor Doug: Thank you very much, I appreciate your call. We're going to try line number one now. Doc, are you on the air?

Doc: Yes I am Pastor Doug.

Pastor Doug: Hi, thank you and your call tonight?

Doc: It has to do with the food laws. This time of the year, there's a lot of get-togethers and a lot of stuff laid out on the table. Tonight I even saw something I've never seen before, a double egg with a crispy piece of bacon sticking out of it. I haven't read Leviticus and there was a pork and shellfish and knowing something about biology that all these animals are scavengers and if it was toxic back then, it stands a reason to me that it's toxic now and when I try to bring this Leviticus up they say that had to do with the Jews and that Paul changed all that. I don't think Paul changed the biology of these animals, so I don't know what to say to these individuals scripture-wise.

Pastor Doug: Let me give you a couple of thoughts, Doc. First of all, the distinction between clean animals and unclean animals goes back before the Jews. You remember that when God told Noah to take the animals on the ark, everybody sings a song that they came two by two but if you read it in the Bible it says the unclean animals came by two, the clean animals came by sevens.

Doc: Yes, I've read that.

Pastor Doug: Now, was Noah Jewish? Because everybody in the world is related to Noah today, right? The whole world is repopulated by Noah and his family. God even told Noah there's a distinction-- What's that?

Doc: The three sons and the daughter-in-laws.

Pastor Doug: That's right, and so everybody is related to Noah. If God made a distinction between clean and unclean for Noah, then you will, you would think that it still applies today. There's another verse you can read in Acts Chapter 10 where when Peter has his vision and this sheet full of unclean animals comes down from heaven and God says, "Arise, kill and eat," Peter says, "Not so Lord, I've never eaten anything common or unclean."

This is three and a half years later after Christ has died, Peter still says we've never eaten anything unclean and he never does take anything from the sheet. Later God shows him the vision is because he should not call the Gentiles unclean and Peter says God has shown me not to call any man, commoner, unclean. The vision had nothing to do with food and yet Peter says, "I've never eaten anything unclean."

You can read in Isaiah chapter-- I think it's chapter 66. It says, "For with fire and with my sword, I will plea with all flesh and the slain of the Lord will be many in that day." It says, " Those that sanctify themselves and purify themselves behind a tree, eating the abomination, the mouse and the swine are going to be consumed by the Lord when He comes." Here it's saying that it's comparing eating pigs with eating rats or mice.

They're scavengers in spite of what some people say that you can just prayer over it now, in the New Testament whatever you pray over is clean that's really not a very strong argument because no parent would accept that from their child. Their child cannot eat ice cream Sunday for breakfast and say but I'm just going to pray over it. We all know that you can't mock God, you're going to sow what you reap and whatever you eat, there's consequences for what you eat.

The verses where Paul talks about praying over your food, it has nothing to do with pork, pork is never mentioned in those verses. Paul is talking about things sacrificed to idols, we don't have to worry about that. If you eat food in a Chinese restaurant, they got a Buddha statue in the restaurant doesn't mean your food is going to suddenly be spirit possessed. That's what Paul is talking about, they had those concerns back then.

You're on the right track. Hey, you know, I've got a study I can send you Doc for free and it's called God's Health Plan and it's got all the verses that you're looking for in one study. Would you like a copy of that?

Doc: I sure would.

Pastor Doug: Just dial this number, it's separate from this studio number. It's an 800 number 835-6747, 800-835-6747, ask for God's Free Health Plan, they'll send it to you for free and nobody will pester you.

Doc: God bless, thanks for your ministry.

Pastor Doug: I appreciate, thank you for your call. That does free up another line, if you'd like to call on with your Bible question. One more time that number, 800-463-7297.

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Pastor Doug: We're going to be talking next to Toronto, I think is it, Liza? There we go.

Liza: Liza.

Pastor Doug: Liza, I'm sorry. Hi, you're on the air with Bible Answers Live.

Liza: Thank you very much and I'm so sorry I didn't jot down your name, I apologize.

Pastor Doug: That's okay. Just call me Pastor Doug.

Liza: I have a question, Pastor Doug. Judges 9:23. My question is, why would God send evil spirit to, in this case, Abimelech and the men of Shechem? I'm just wondering, why would God send an evil spirit?

Pastor Doug: Let me give you a story in the Bible that explains how that work. You may remember the Book of Job and the devil comes to the Lord and God says, "Have you considered I've got a faithful servant named Job," and then he says, "The only reason Job's faithful is because you protect him." Anyway, there's this dialogue between the devil and God and finally, God says, "I'm going to let you test Job and you're going to find out that the reason for Job's faithfulness is not just because I'm blessing him.

It says that the Lord withdrew His protection from Job, the devil came in, there were limitations on what the devil could do. When it says, "God sent an evil spirit," God didn't send the devil to Job any more than he sent this evil spirit to Abimelech. When they rejected the Lord, it's like when you reject light, the automatic consequence of rejecting light is darkness comes in. That's what happened there, is when they rejected the Light the darkness came in. Does that make sense, Liza?

Liza: It does make sense.

Pastor Doug: There's a couple of other places, the pharaoh and others it talks about them. They basically rejected God and it sounds like God hardened their hearts but it's just he withdrew his protection and the devil comes in and then hardens your heart. God doesn't tempt anyone, God is the author of every good and perfect gift. Thank you very much for your call, we appreciate that. With that, we're going to be talking to Christie who is calling on line four. You didn't know you were on line four, did you? Christie, you're on the air with Bible Answers Live.

Christie: Hi, thank you. I'm calling to ask about, you guys were talking earlier about the water into wine or grape juice but I was wondering if you can explain that a bit more how it would be grape juice and not wine because I was always told that what made it such a great miracle was that, because wine takes time to ferment and Jesus could turn the water into wine right away.

Pastor Doug: I don't know that it would be any easier to turn water into fermented grape juice then it would be to turn it into unfermented grape juice.  The chemical difference between water and grape juice is pretty astounding to just speak the word and have that change. The reason I don't believe that it was fermented is the word wine in the Bible. You're not going to find the word grape juice anywhere in the Bible. It's always called wine because the word wine comes from an ancient word and it means the juice of the vine.

Christie: I'm sorry. The juice of what?

Pastor Doug: The vine. Like a grape vine.

Christie: Oh, [crosstalk]

Pastor Doug: It's a similar root word. You're not going to find a place where it says grape juice. You do find places in the Bible where it says, "You don't put new wine." What is new wine? New wine is grape juice, right? "You don't put new wine in old wineskins," because the new grape juice will expand and it bursts the skins. That's what Jesus said. Jesus compared his teaching to new wine, grape juice. You can read in Isaiah; I think it's 65 it says, "For as the new wine is in the cluster." Well, if it's still in the cluster, it's not fermented yet.

In the original Greek here where it's talking about the grape juice, let me give you one more verse that I think is proof for that. At the Last Supper, there was bread and wine, correct? You know what Jesus said, He said, "I will not drink," and this is in Matthew, "I will not drink of the fruit of the vine again until I drink it with you new in my Father's kingdom." He specifically says, "I'll drink it with you new," meaning it'll be new wine. Old wine, you can get old wine all year long. Fermented wine, you can get any time of year. You can only get grape juice. Back then they didn't have Welch's grape juice. You can only get fresh grape juice around the time of the harvest.

That's why at the wedding, they were amazed. They said, "You've saved the best for last." They didn't mean the hard stuff. Now, I've got a book I wrote on that because it's a really good question and people struggle with it and I'll send it to you for free. Then you also just need to ask this question Christie, would Jesus after people have been at a wedding feast for several days, would he make 30 gallons of booze? Look at what happens at weddings after people have had too much to drink. In some weddings, have gotten off to a really bad start because of the drinking that happens.

Christie: That's right, yes.

Pastor Doug: Typically, wine, the Bible says, "Wine is a mocker, strong drink is raging. Whoever is deceived thereby is not wise." That's setting proverbs 22. Let me send you the book called, Alcohol & the Christian. All you got to do is call this number. They'll take down your address, they'll send it to you. It's that easy. You can even read it online for free right now, at the Amazing Facts website. Just type in Doug Batchelor, Alcohol & the Christian. You just Google that, you'll find it and it'll--

Christie: Thank you so much.

Pastor Doug: All right. Appreciate your call. By the way, if you want a copy to hold it's 800-835-6747. If you'd like to call in with a question, then just give us a call that number again. We have another line open 800-463-7297 to call the studio, 463-7297. I do see the other callers that are waiting. We're going to keep on marching along here. Talking next to Brian who's calling in. Brian, you're on the air with Bible answers live.

Brian: How are you doing tonight Pastor?

Pastor Doug: I'm always doing much better than I deserve.

Brian: Okay, I'm listening to you on LifeTalk Radio. I'm calling from New Port, Richey. I live right across from Jeff [unintelligible 00:23:34] synagogue and I go there.

Pastor Doug: Bless your heart. Well, I'm glad you're tuning in. You say hello to Jeff for me.

Brian: I will. Okay. My question is about the white horse in Revelation. I know that's symboling, but what is it speaking of? The sword in his mouth is the word of God. Okay, but there's no animals in heaven. What does that white horse mean that he's coming back on?

Pastor Doug: Well, that's right. Now, you're correct. Most of the animals that you find in Revelation are symbols. Revelation 4 talks about a Lamb that was slain. Who do you suppose that lamb represents?

Brian: That would be Jesus.

Pastor Doug: Then in Revelation Chapter 12 it talks about a dragon chasing after a woman. Who do you think the dragon represents?

Brian: That would be Satan.

Pastor Doug: When Elijah went up to heaven, it says there were chariots and horses of fire. I used to think the angels ride horses when they pick someone up. God is using terms that we can understand. Princes used to often mount, they'd ride on horses. They were high, it was exalted. It represented power, it represented speed because horses could go much faster than a man could run. Jesus is pictured coming as a conquering King and the white horse, white is a symbol of purity. That's why brides typically wear white. That white horse is symbolizing the majesty, the purity, the speed, the power of Christ's return.

Brian: Okay, because I wasn't sure. People were arguing with me. They take everything literally.

Pastor Doug: Yes, no. Revelation is full of symbols.

Brian: Can I ask you one other quick question?

Pastor Doug: Sure.

Brian: Can you tell me, I think it's in Matthew where if you have faith you can move mountains, exactly what that means? I believe it would take the problems out of your life. I'm not 100% sure.

Pastor Doug: Well, you're right. The biggest problem in our life is sin, right?

Brian: Correct.

Pastor Doug: Jesus said, "If you got faith, you can say to this mountain, be plucked up and cast into the sea and it will be done."

Brian: Right. Yes, that makes sense. It's a lot better than praying to move Mount Everest or anything like that.

Pastor Doug: God gives us bulldozers for that. There's another verse in the Bible and I just read it. I think it's maybe in Micah where it says, "He takes our sins and cast them into the depths of the sea."

Brian: Correct.

Pastor Doug: He tells us that this mountain of sin is what he wants to cast into the depths of the sea. That mountain is a symbol for the burdens that we bear.

Brian: That's right. Yes, whatever the problems you have in life. Okay, thank you, Pastor Doug. I'll tell next week while I go to the synagogue, I'll tell them Doug said hello.

Pastor Doug: All right, I sure appreciate that. Thanks so much, Brian. We appreciate your phone call. Friends, that opens up another line and we're going get started on another call though we might have to take a break before we're complete with it. All right, we're going to go to talk with Christina. Christina, you're on the air with Bible Answers Live.

Christina: Hi, Pastor Doug, thanks for taking my call.

Pastor Doug: Yes, we'll get started and then we may need to take a break and come back to you, okay?

Christina: Not a problem. My question is, from Matthew 5:20. I was wanting to know exactly what did Christ mean by being more righteous than the Pharisees? Does that mean if we're more righteous than the Pharisees, we can get into heaven?

Pastor Doug: Well, the way Jesus said it, it would mean yes, but he's not talking about the legalistic righteousness. When Christ said, except your righteousness exceeds the righteousness of the Pharisees. He's saying you need a higher quality of righteousness. Theirs was a righteousness that was all outward display. Christ said, "You need a righteousness that's based on a transformed heart." He's not saying that we needed to be more legalistic than the Pharisees. He's saying we need a higher caliber of righteousness.

Now, go ahead and ponder that thought for just a moment. Christie, we're going to be taking a break. This is what they call a heartbreak at the halfway through the program. Some of our other affiliates to do station ID right now and gives us a chance to get a drink of water. We'll come back. We do have other lines open. If you have a Bible question for tonight, best half of the program is yet to come. 800-GOD-SAYS, that's 800- 463-7297 and also so much of what we offer is at We're coming right back.


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Advertisement: What if you could know the future? What would you do? What would you change? To see the future, you must understand the past.

Alexander the Great becomes King when he's only 18 but he's a military prodigy.

150 years in advance, Cyrus had been named.

Nebuchadnezzar built this city as a showcase to the entire world.

Rome was violent. They were ruthless, they were determined.

This intriguing documentary hosted by Pastor Doug Batchelor explores the most striking Bible prophecies that have been dramatically fulfilled throughout history. Kingdoms in Time, an extraordinary adventure through the Bible's most amazing fulfilled prophecies. Are you ready? For life-changing Christian resources, visit


Automated: Every Bible question you have answered moves you one step closer to the fullness of God's will for your life. What are you waiting for? Get the answers you need for a fuller, richer, more confident life. You're listening to Bible Answers Live. This broadcast is a previously recorded episode, if you'd like answers to your Bible-related questions on the air, please call us next Sunday between 7 PM and 8 PM Pacific time.

To receive any of the Bible resources mentioned in this evening's program call 800-835-6747, once again, that's 800-835-6747. Now, let's join Pastor Doug Batchelor for more Bible Answers Live.

Pastor Doug: Welcome back, listening friends. This is Bible Answers Live. If you've joined along the way, it is a live international interactive bible study and you are invited to the table. If you'd like to call in with a Bible question, we still have some lines open, 800-463-7297, that's 800-463-7297 and my name is Doug Batchelor, Pastor Ross has the night off. Tonight, we're going to go back to a caller we left hanging. Christina was asking a question about Matthew 5:20 and where Jesus said unless your righteousness exceeds the righteousness of the scribe and the Pharisees you will by no means enter the kingdom of heaven. Christina, we're back. Did that beginning of an answer help you?

Christina: It did but I guess a better follow-up question would be, does Jesus expound or does he expound on this higher caliber of righteousness anywhere else in the gospel?

Pastor Doug: Yes. A matter of fact, it's in the context of what He's saying. If you go to the next verse, He said, "You've heard it said by them of all, you shall not murder." The scribes and Pharisees taught that, "and whoever murders is in danger of judgment but I say, if you're angry with your brother without cause, you're in danger of the judgment." Jesus said it's not just the action of murder, it's even the attitude of murder and He goes on and He says, "It's not just committing adultery, it's thinking it in your heart."

It's a higher caliber, it's not just the outward action, it's the inward attitude. Christ was saying, "Your righteousness has to be better." I don't know what version of Bible you might be looking at but if you look at Matthew 5:20 you'll notice the word, the righteousness does not appear, it's italicized which means it's added by the translators. The way this originally reads is, "For I say to you that unless your righteousness exceeds the scribes and Pharisees, you will by no means enter the kingdom of heaven."

He's talking really about a better kind of righteousness and by the way, the scribes and Pharisees were not truly righteous because He said, "You're devouring widows' houses and you're making long prayers," that's not righteous.

Christina: Then I can obtain this righteousness on my own?

Pastor Doug: No, all true righteousness comes by faith and accepting the gift of Christ righteousness which is better than the scribes and Pharisees and the righteousness of Jesus comes to you in two ways. First, you accept it by faith through prayer, that's called justification then as you follow Him, He cleanses your life and you begin to walk in newness of life, you begin to practice a different kind of life.

Christina: Where in the Bible would it say that?

Pastor Doug: Where in the Bible does it say that we receive Christ's righteousness?

Christina: Yes.

Pastor Doug: Through Faith, well you can look at Galatians 2:20, you can look at Romans Chapter six, you read just Romans Cchapter six there. A matter of fact, Romans Chapter eight. Romans has quite a bit about the righteousness of Christ and Galatians 2:20 Paul said, "It's not I that lives but Christ that lives in me." When we come to the Lord and we come in faith and say, "Lord please forgive our sins and we thank you that you died for our sins," He takes our badness, He gives us His goodness or His righteousness, His right living. Have you done that before, have you asked him?

Christina: Absolutely. The reason I ask all these questions is because here in Nome, Alaska we have a prison ministry and this was a question one of our residents had asked and we didn't have all the verses to give him and so I appreciate you to have all the answers.

Pastor Doug: I tell you what? We have a free book we'll be happy to send you and you can download that has all the verses because I can't in three minutes give you all the versus on the righteousness that Jesus offers us but if you ask for the book, Three Steps to Heaven. You can download that for free off the Amazing Facts website or we'll send you a copy even way up to Nome, Alaska though it may take a few days to get there. Give greetings to our friends in prison, you tell them Pastor Doug says hello.

Christina: Definitely, thank you so much, Pastor Doug.

Pastor Doug: Thank you, Christina, thanks for your patience. All right. With that, we're going to talk to Samuel who's been waiting patiently. Samuel, you're on the air with Bible Answers Live.

Samuel: Good evening, pastor. Thank you for taking the call. I'm calling to gain wisdom to what God in the Bible says about divorce and separation of family. I lost my family two years ago and I've been having a hard time dealing with it mentally. There's a lot of anger, there's a lot of resentment and I'm trying to-- I don't know why my dog just started barking.

Pastor Doug: It's because you're asking a spiritual question probably.

Samuel: I've been dealing with resentment, I've been dealing with bad thoughts and it's very cumbersome, it wears down on me. I've had a lot of things go wrong since the separation of my family and I reached a point where I don't know what the Bible has to say.

Pastor Doug: I'll tell you what-- Conrad, we're getting a lot of background noise here. Let me see if I can address some of your question about what the Bible has to say. First of all, obviously, one of the most traumatic things a person can go through is a divorce and I've had some friends that say, death is sometimes easier, dealing with a death in the family than divorce because you need to continue to interact especially if there's children involved and there's a lot of pain, there can be resentment, there can be anger, there can be regret over mistakes, usually mistakes on both sides.

The first thing to do is to just completely present yourself to the Lord and say, "Lord, I'm broken, the marriage is broken and I need a new beginning." Kind of like that Samaritan woman. When she met Jesus, she had been through five husbands." That sounds like a Hollywood film star and she was living with a guy she wasn't married to and yet Jesus came to her and revealed He was the Messiah.

You just completely surrender if you've done that before, you surrender a new to the Lord and you start rebuilding your life. Even though God forgives us, there's always going to be some scars. You pray that God will give you healing. You've been hit by a tidal wave, whenever you go through a large grief, it could be a death, it could be a divorce, some traumatic experience, it could be a terrible health crisis.

You feel you're hit by a tidal wave but as time goes by and God heals, the waves get further apart and the waves get smaller and you will begin to heal from this and rebuild your life. You sound like you're still a relatively young man. I have a book I'd like to send you, I wrote for this particular reason. It'll be great of you to get some good counsel from a pastor and be part of a recovery group dealing with divorce recovery.

The book I wrote, I'll send you a copy, it's called Marriage, Divorce and Remarriage. Just call the resource line, this is a different phone number than the studio, 800-835-6747 and we'll be happy to send you a free copy. Thank you very much, I'm going to bring your volume back up, did that help your question at all?

Samuel: Yes, it did. There are times where I feel that I have all the answers and I have it under control and then a thought would come to me, a thought of something that has happened and I seem to slip right back into the same mindset as before.

Pastor Doug: You gave the key right there, you'll catch yourself thinking about these triggers that bring the frustration and the anger, ask the Lord to just guide your thinking, think on those things as Paul says that are just, I think this is Philippians, just noble and pure and holy and good. Philippians 4:8. When you pray that prayer and you catch some of these old memories coming in your mind just start to trigger the unhappy feelings.

Say, "Lord, I'm not going to dwell on that." Those thoughts will come but you can reject them and it'll get easier. Thank you very much and we'll be praying for you, I know there's a lot of people out there that are struggling that have maybe been through a divorce or some of these trials and they're very difficult. It happens to Christians too.


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Pastor Doug: All right, we're going to talk next to Mrs. Pamela? Hi, How are you, Pamela? Thanks for calling in.

Pamela: Hi, Pastor Doug, how are you?

Pastor Doug: I'm doing wonderfully. I appreciate your call.

Pamela: I have a question. How do you really know when God is trying to give you a message or tell you something?

Pastor Doug: There's a variety of ways. The first and foremost, God will speak to you through His word. When you read the word you'll say, "Oh, Wow, God is telling me in His word, do this or don't do that," but not every decision in life comes via the Bible. Sometimes God guides us through Christian counsel. If you've got several friends that maybe, they got a good relationship with the Lord, and they're counseling you in a certain direction, He may be trying to speak to you through them. Sometimes providence will tell you.

When I say providence, things happen, and God will start closing the door because He's nudging you in another direction, or He may open a new door and He's nudging you towards this new opportunity. You look at things happening around you, God does speak to us through our spirit but that's not always the safest guide because sometimes we get our own desires mixed up with the holy spirit and we can't tell the difference.

That can be a little bit dicey saying, "Or is it God's spirit telling me this, or is it my own desires?" Even the devil can give you feelings. The feelings are not the safest guide. You just pray for providential indicators, and spend time in prayer, because if you commit your way to the lord, He will direct your path.

Pamela: Okay. Thank you so much, Pastor Doug.

Pastor Doug: Absolutely. Pamela, I've got a book I'll send you for free. It's called, How to know the will of God. If you call the resource line, I'll be happy to send that to you. That's 800-835-6747, and tell them you're listening to Bible Answers Live and you've been offered the book, How to know the will of God. That sounds like it's up the alley of your question. All right, appreciate your call. Let's see, we've got a few people who have been waiting patiently. I'm going to talk next to Christie. Christie, you're on the air with Bible Answers Live.

Christie: Hi, how are you doing Pastor Doug.

Pastor Doug: Doing great, thank you for calling.

Christie: A group of us have been having discussions in dealing with demon possession with a young lady. We know that in Mathew when Jesus encountered the demon-possessed man, He rebuked them. Our question is, in dealing with such a thing, we know that without prayer, you can't deal with such because Christ said that we are not dealing with anything of this realm. We have actually witnessed the demonic spirits in this lady. Where in scripture can we find, or is there, in dealing with such?

Pastor Doug: Of course, you have Mark Chapter Five where Jesus cast a legion of demons out of one man. That's the most intense example in the Bible because this man is running around naked, he's covered with chains, he's living among toons and pigs. He's a perfect example of an absolutely lost individual, and Jesus sets him free and then sends him out preaching. It's the most radical conversion in the Bible. When the disciples one time came to Jesus and they said, "Why couldn't we cast out this demon?" That's the same chapter, actually a little later on, he said, "This kind does not come out except prayer and fasting."

There might be difficult cases where you might want to take some time and fast and pray for a brother and sister that's struggling with what may be demonic possession. Some people have genuine mental problems, and they just need healing, or sometimes they may need a chemical [laughs] that's missing. It is true a person can be low on B12 or something else and actually, it will affect them mentally. Prayer, be a good witness, claim the promises of God. I don't recommend that Christian groups get involved in exorcisms.

You'll notice in the Bible that the apostles never went looking for demon-possessed people. It seems like they just showed up, and they had to deal with it. Paul was out preaching and this girl began to follow him and he cast the devil out of her. Jesus was preaching and this demon-possessed man came into the synagogue, but they never really went out looking for them. I think you ought to avoid it, there's enough demonic activity in the world that we run into without looking for it.

Christie: Oh, no, we didn't go looking for it.

Pastor Doug: I know what you mean.

Christie: We were actually told last week by this person that, "I'm just using you," and it just brings chills, but, just how the outward appearance just totally changed on this person. Even the eyes went darker when all of a sudden it started vocalizing [crosstalk].

Pastor Doug: Yes, there could be physiological changes if a person is demon possessed, just as if a person is filled with the spirit. Bible says, Moses's face was shining. I do have a sermon that if you go to just Youtube, type in Doug Batchelor-- I hate to say this, but, type in 'Doug Batchelor demons', and you'll see a sermon I did on dealing with demonic possession. I think it's called, dealing with demons and evil spirits, but I deal with a bunch of scriptures on that.

There's a lot more there that I can share with you in just a moment or two. See if that helps Christie, and we do appreciate your call. There is a Bible study we offer if you want a free copy, it's called, Did God create a devil? I think you'll find that very helpful, it tells us about the origin. Why do we have evil spirits in the world? You can get that by calling 800-835-6747, and thank you for your call. I'm going to talk next with Robert.

Robert: Good evening?

Pastor Doug: Evening, thank you for waiting.

Robert: No problemo. I have a couple of questions regarding Sabbath.

Pastor Doug: Okay

Robert: One is I hear a lot of people say that the Sabbath was only meant for Israel.

Pastor Doug: All right, do you want me to address that real quick.

Robert: Yes

Pastor Doug: The first mention of the Sabbath, is on the seventh day of creation, in Genesis Chapter Two. You can't really go back much further than Genesis Chapter Two. God blessed the day, He sanctified it, He sets it aside way back in the beginning, and He did it for man. Jesus said the Sabbath was made for man. I think the word there in greek is Anthropos, meaning mankind, humanity. The idea that the Sabbath is just for the jews, and that only Jews need a day of worship and rest is really absurd when you think about it.

It goes back to the beginning. It even says in heaven. You can read in Isaiah 66, it says that from one Sabbath to another, all flesh will come and worship before Him in the new heaven and the new earth. If you've got it all the way back there in Genesis for Adam and Eve, and if you've got it, of course, in the wilderness, and you've got it with the apostles in Christ, and you have it in heaven, why wouldn't we need a day of worship and rest? Now, does that make sense?

Robert: Yes. Have you heard before that the Sabbath wasn't really kept until the giving of the manna?

Pastor Doug: Yes, I have heard that, but I think I can show otherwise. For example, the giving of the manna is chapter 16, of course Ten Commandments don't come until after chapter 20, but when God does rain the manna down from heaven in chapter 16 of Exodus, the people did not listen, they went out gathering on the Sabbath day and God says, "How long will you refuse to keep my commandments?" God refers to the Sabbath as a commandment before he even gave the Ten Commandments.

If you go to Genesis, is it chapter three? Where the Pharaoh said to Moses, Moses met with the leaders of Israel and they started to rest, and the Pharaoh said, "You're causing the people to Shabath." He said, "You're making the people rest." The original word there is Sabbath. Even when Moses first began the Exodus odyssey, he said, "Look, you need to return to the Lord," and part of that was to return back to the commandments of God they'd gotten from Genesis. Even, in Isaiah, I can't remember the verse, it might be 65, he says, "And the sons of the stranger that join themselves to the lord and keep his Sabbath." Meaning the Gentiles.

Robert: I think that's 56.

Pastor Doug: Yes, that's it. Correct, thank you. Isaiah 56. I think there's a number of examples in the Bible where the Sabbath is not made for one race of people. You said you had a second part to your question?

Robert: Yes, Hosea 2:11, talks about God taking away the Sabbath.

Pastor Doug: Yes not only in Hosea 2, but I think he also says it in Isaiah. He says, "Away with your Sabbath." Meaning, any of their holidays or feasts that they kept, thinking they were earning them the righteousness, that God-- anyone thinking about it, if you look at Hosea, it means Jesus hasn't even been born yet.

The idea that the Sabbaths were done during the time of Hosea, or what's the reason for that? God wasn't saying the Sabbath was over with. He was just saying all of your religious festivals, if you're not doing it through faith in me, it's smoke in my nose. I think that's what Isaiah calls it. He said, "You come and you pray long prayers and you stretch out your hands." Jesus, He said the same thing to the religious leaders in His day.

He said, "You fast to be seen of men. You give to be seen of men. You pray to be seen of men." Now, Jesus didn't say there was anything wrong with giving. We got to keep giving. Nothing wrong with fasting and nothing wrong with praying, but don't do it for selfish reasons. Same thing with the Sabbath and Hosea. He said, "You're doing it for carnal reasons." Does that make sense?

Robert: Not that he took away the Sabbath, He--

Pastor Doug: No. Why would God take away the one commandment that begins with the word 'remember'? See all the commandment begins with the word remember. Why would He say, "Now, that's the only one I want you to forget." Nobody argues about the other nine commandments. I can stand up at any church in the country and I've done it and preach, honor your father and mother and everybody says Amen. I could say, thou shall not covet. They look nervous, but they'll say Amen. You can say, thou shall not commit adultery. They may look nervous, but they'll say Amen.

You can go through all Ten Commandments and they'll say Amen. Then you say, remember the Sabbath Day, people are okay, as long as you don't say you're supposed to do it on the seventh day, then they get nervous. They'll say, we're not under the law. Now we're under grace. That always seemed a little bit strange. Hey, I got a study. We're going to go to another call, Robert, but let me send you our study on that. It's called, When God said to remember. We've got a special study guide on the Sabbath.

You call the resource line and that number is 800-835-6747 and ask for the Amazing Facts study guide on the Sabbath Day. There's a website that's become very popular. It's called Sabbath Truth. If you go to Google and you try to type in Sabbath truth, it's got everything about the Sabbath. The history, it's a very popular site and it's encouraging too. Thank you for your call. I'm going to talk next to Kenneth. He's been waiting patiently. Kenneth, you're on the air with Bible Answers Live.

Kenneth: Hi. Just want to say, I appreciate the work you do in the ministry and the clarity that you bring to the scriptures. My question is, we're doing a study in the book of Acts and there's reference to a multitude who came and became believers and then were later filled with the Holy Spirit. Now, when a person comes to Christ, Christ comes into their heart and lives within their heart. Then the work begins. Isn't it the Holy Spirit that does the work in your heart?

When it references being filled with the Holy Spirit, is it possible for a believer to not have the Holy Spirit? What was the significance in Acts where the multitude that came and became believers were later filled with the Holy Spirit?

Pastor Doug: Yes, because the spirit comes in different degrees. The Bible even uses that figure. It talks about the Holy Spirit, and it gives us the analogy of farming. That you can have a light rain and you could have a lot of rain. There could be heavy rain and at Pentecost, they were baptized. Baptism is immersion. That's a downpour, it's when you're just completely immersed. They were baptized with the Holy Spirit. It's the Holy Spirit that brings us to conviction. Even before we're believers, the Holy Spirit convicts us of our sin. It's the Holy Spirit that will lead us to come to Jesus.

The Holy Spirit comforts. You see the holy spirit coming in different waves. An example would be Acts chapter two, the disciples are baptized in the Holy Spirit. Well, the apostles are there that day, correct? You get to Acts chapter four it says, "And they prayed and the place was filled with the power of the spirit and they spoke the word of God." They were filled with the spirit again, in acts chapter four and you see several times where it says, "The Spirit of the Lord came on this person or that person."

It wasn't that the Spirit had totally left them, God's spirit is, I think, in me and you right now. That's different from being baptized in the Holy Spirit just before Jesus comes. Does that make sense, Ken?

Kenneth: Absolutely. That's where I want to be living, right there, in filling of the Holy Spirit.

Pastor Doug: Well, you and I both. Tell you what, I appreciate your question. I've got a book that I wrote on the Holy Spirit and it's called, The Holy Spirit: The Need. The Holy Spirit: The Need by Doug Batchelor. You call the resource line, we'll send you one of those. It's a little sermon book. Easy to read. 800 835-6747 for the free offer, and it's called The Holy Spirit: The Need. All right, we're going to try and take at least one more call here. We've got, Walter has been waiting patiently. Walter, you're on the air. We've got about a minute. Can you hear me?

Walter: Yes sir. I've been trying for years to get an answer to this question. Every year we celebrate Christ's birth, in Ecclesiastes seven says to cry at a birth and celebrate at death. Why do we do the opposite?

Pastor Doug: Well, Solomon is talking about the vanity of life in that passage, and he's saying, "It's better to go to the house of mourning than the house of feasting because the living will take it to heart." Even Job, when he was going through his sufferings, he said, "Let the day of my birth, when someone told my father there's a Man child, let it be darkness because of the suffering in life." At the same time, there are places in the Bible where it talks about rejoicing at the news of a birth. "Happy is the man that has his quiver full of children."

Yes, the birth of somebody is a bittersweet question. Hey, listen, dear friends, you can tell from the music if we didn't get to your call tonight, I apologize. We started slow and it filled up with calls. Give us a chance again next week and go to the Amazing Facts website. If you've been blessed, let us know and you can donate, keep us on the air. God bless you.


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