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The Alaskan Oil Pipeline

Date: 11/07/2010 
Running 800 miles north to south, the Alaskan Oil Pipeline is one of the man-made wonders of the modern world. The four-foot-wide pipeline crosses three mountain ranges and passes across 800 rivers and streams.
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Hello, friends. This is Doug Batchelor. How about an amazing fact? Running 800 miles north to south, the Alaskan Oil Pipeline is one of the man-made wonders of the modern world. The four-foot-wide pipeline crosses three mountain ranges and passes across 800 rivers and streams. Every day, this colossal conduit transports 88,000 barrels of oil from Prudhoe Bay on Alaska’s north slope to Valdez, Alaska’s southern ice-free port. Engineers had to design the pipe to survive earthquakes, forest fires, and extreme temperatures. Because the oil emerges from the ground at around 180 degrees Fahrenheit and it travels through the pipe at over 120 degrees, much of the pipe had to be elevated to prevent the permafrost from melting.

Otherwise, the pipeline would sink in the mud and possibly break. The vast pipeline was constructed in six sections by five different contractors, employing 21,000 people at the peak of the work. 31 workers died in construction accidents. From conception to completion, the Alaskan Oil Pipeline took nearly 10 years to build and cost about 8 billion dollars. When the oil arrives in Valdez, it is stored in one of eighteen storage tanks where it is pumped into ocean tankers and carried to U.S. refineries by sea. The storage tanks are 63-feet-tall and 250-feet-wide and they hold 9.1 million barrels. Remember, each barrel of oil contains 42 gallons. This energy lifeline is crucial to the U.S. economy because more than 15% of America’s oil now flows through the Alaskan Pipeline each year. Did you know one of the Bible prophecies speaks of an oil pipeline? Stay with us, friends, we’re going to learn more as Amazing Facts brings you this edition of Bible Answers Live!

[PROGRAM INTRODUCTION]

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Hello, listening friends, and for those who are tuning in for the first time, you’ve found Bible Answers Live. This is a live call-in program where you can call in with questions regarding the Word of God, the Bible. If you have a question, right now is a good time to call in. We have some lines open. That number is 800-GOD-SAYS, and that translates to 800-463-7297. My name is Doug Batchelor.

Pastor Jëan Ross: My name is Jëan Ross. Good evening, friends and Pastor Doug. Let’s begin the program with prayer. Dear Father, we thank You that we have the opportunity to talk about Your Word. We ask your special blessing upon this program. We do recognize that the Bible is Your Word and in order for us to correctly understand it, we need the leading and the guiding of the Holy Spirit, so please be with us here in the studio and be with all of those listening, wherever they might be. In Jesus’ name, amen.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Amen.

Pastor Jëan Ross: Pastor Doug, you opened the program by talking about the Alaskan Pipeline. Fascinating fact, but what prophecy were you talking about, about a pipeline for oil in the Bible?

Pastor Doug Batchelor: That’s right. There is a prophecy that you find in the book of Zachariah, talks about an oil pipeline. But it’s not a very long pipe. It says here in Zachariah 4:12, and you can read through verse 14, “Again, I asked him, ‘What are these two olive branches besides the two gold pipes that pour out golden oil?’ He replied, ‘Do you not know what these are?’ ‘No, my Lord,’ I said. He said, ‘These are the two who are the anointed, to serve the Lord of all the earth.’” And this is a parallel passage, talking about the two witnesses that you find in Revelation 11. But that oil. In the Bible, they actually had a lampstand in the temple, and they constructed it with the golden pipes that carried oil to the actual lamps. That oil is a symbol of the Holy Spirit. A person might even say that there is a pipeline that reaches from Heaven to earth, and it’s not the golden pipe spoken of here in this prophecy, but in a sense, Jesus, on the cross, is a bridge. It’s through Christ, the Holy Spirit – and that’s often symbolized by oil in the Bible – comes to our world.

Christ came that He might send the comforter. You find that in John 14. In the Old Testament, when someone was anointed as a king or as a prophet or as a priest, they would pour oil on them. That was a symbol that they were being anointed by the Spirit. When Christ was baptized, the Holy Spirit came down and filled Him at his baptism with a special measure of the Spirit. That’s why He was called “The Anointed” or “The Christ.” So, Jesus then became the vehicle. Because Christ is 100% God and God became man in Jesus, the incarnation. The cross really became a bridge between Heaven and earth. It’s the vehicle that permits the Holy Spirit to come into our hearts. Friends, in the same way that pipeline is bringing life down to the lower fifty states, Jesus and His cross is bringing the power of His Spirit from Heaven into our world. Maybe you’d like to know more about how you can receive the gift of the Spirit. We have a free offer.

Pastor Jëan Ross: We’ve got a book entitled “Life In The Spirit” dealing with the subject of the Holy Spirit. How do we obtain the Holy Spirit? What is the work of the Holy Spirit? To receive this free resource, give us a call on our resource line, that’s 1-800-835-6747. That number again is 800-835-6747 and ask for the book “Life In The Spirit” and we’ll be happy to send that out to you.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Listening friends, just before I forget about it, we know we have a number of people that are listening either on radio or on Internet down in Southern California. I just want to extend a personal invitation. I will be in the LA area. I will be at the White Memorial Church that is right in the intersection of, I think, Interstate-10 and 5 or 405 right there in southern California, Los Angeles. This coming Friday night, that’s the 12th, 13th, 14th of November. Next week. So, any friend down there, if you’d like to come, I’d love to meet you, shake your hand. Tell your friends and enemies to come join us.

Pastor Jëan Ross: I believe for more information, you can get that at the Amazing Facts website.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: It’s right on the homepage.

Pastor Jëan Ross: Alright, we’ll go to the phonelines. We’ve got David calling from Fairfield, California. David, welcome to the program.

David: Hi, there.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Hi, David, how can we help you tonight?

David: Yeah, I just got a question. What does the Bible say about pursuing a business in this day and age?

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Well, first of all, there will be businesses that will be created and operated right up the end, because Jesus said even as it was in the days of Noah, they’ll be buying and selling right up to the end. Then he compared it to Lot and Sodom, and he said that the day that Lot left Sodom, they were engaged in everyday activity and it kind of came suddenly. But there’s certainly nothing wrong with Christians being involved in business. Jesus said we should occupy till He comes. That’s in Luke, I believe, Pastor Ross, but I forget the verse. Maybe it’s Luke 17 or Luke 21, I think. But I don’t remember. He said occupy. In other words, stay busy. Christ, of course, tells the parable of the good man that left and he gave each of his servant’s talents for investing. So, God wants us to be faithful in our investing.

Pastor Jëan Ross: The verse you’re referring to is Luke 19:13.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: I hope I’m aiming near the bulls eye of your question, David. I could be skirting the edges. Are you still there, David?

David: Yeah. You’re kind of breaking up a little bit. But I can hear you a little bit.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Anyway, there’s nothing wrong with Christians being involved in business. Not every Christian is called to be an Apostle or to be an itinerant missionary. We’re all called to be servants in God’s cause, but some of us…Paul even made tents. I guess you could say that was a cottage industry. But, yeah, nothing wrong with a Christian being involved with a business. Just want to be faithful and represent Christ, whatever our business is. Christians should be careful about getting into business partnerships with non-believers. That could create conflict.

Pastor Jëan Ross: Alright. We’re going to take a look at our next caller. We have Adrian, who is calling from Grants Pass, Oregon. Adrian, welcome to the program.

Adrian: Thank you. I just had a question about what you guys thought about 1 Corinthians 5:4-5.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Alright, let me read this for our friends that are listening. “In the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, when you’re gathered together, and my spirit, with the power of our Lord Jesus Christ, to deliver such an one to Satan for the destruction of the flesh, that the spirit might be saved in the day of the Lord Jesus.” Paul here is addressing a situation. They actually had a young man in the Corinthian church that was committing adultery with his stepmother, the way I remember it. They were just looking the other way, and he said it’s bringing shame. They’re doing worse than the heathen do in the church, and they needed to deal with it. So, he said, this person needed to basically be put out of the church. When he says here “for the destruction of the flesh,” he’s basically saying that if he’s going to go down this road of living for the flesh, perhaps he’ll find out how unsatisfying that is, living for the devil, trying to find happiness through the things of the flesh, and it will bring him to repentance, that he might be saved. So, I don’t think he was saying you can put him out of the church, he can live for the world, but he’s still going to be saved. It was basically saying maybe by cutting him loose he’ll come to his senses. Living after the flesh, he’ll realize how unsatisfying that is and it might be the means of him saying, “Look, I’m outside the church now. I need to repent. I need to come back.” Pastor Ross, you have any thoughts on that?

Pastor Jëan Ross: Yeah, sometimes decisions have to be made and the church needs to act on certain things for the good of the person involved in the situation, that by the grace of God, through prayer and when they realize they’re wrong, that they’ll repent and turn back to God and join fellowship with the church. But, action is needed in some of these cases.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Yeah. Sometimes…are we still…it looks like we switched.

Pastor Jëan Ross: Adrian? You there?

Pastor Doug Batchelor: You there, Adrian?

Adrian: Yeah.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Yeah, sometimes we have a phantom that gets into our telephone line. We don’t know what it is, but…anyway, it’s very difficult when churches get together and they need to address disfellowshipping a person. Some churches call it excommunication. It basically means you take them officially out of church membership, and they think it’s an unloving thing to do. But it is actually the loving thing to do to bring them to repentance. It’s unloving to not do anything, and then they’re just hardened in their bad behavior. Does that help a little?

Adrian: Yeah. I was just thinking, it would probably be important, it seems to me, that you would still keep in connection with that person. Not necessarily officially through the church, but just showing that you still care about them, of course.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Yeah. You can look at how Jesus dealt with people. I mean, the Lord knew that Judas was basically extorting money from their meager supplies, and Jesus still called him friend. Even when Judas went out and betrayed Jesus, when he came to kiss him in the garden, Jesus called him friend. I would have thought that would’ve been pretty convicting, when he said, “Friend betrayest thou the Son of Man with a kiss.” I think we should still be loving to people. I don’t know that we should pursue a supporting relationship with them, meaning you don’t want to support them in their bad behavior, but you don’t want to be un-Christ like in your communications with them. Anyway, hope that helps, Adrian. Good question. Very relevant.

Pastor Jëan Ross: We have Robert, who is listening from Palm Springs, California. Robert, you’re on the air.

Robert: Hello, good evening.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Evening, Robert! Get real close to your phone.

Robert: Okay.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: And your question tonight?

Robert: Can you hear me now?

Pastor Doug Batchelor: I can.

Robert: Okay. My question is, Doug, you know that one time where the demons could not come out of the people and Jesus said, “These kind go out only with prayer and fasting.”

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Yes.

Robert: Now, was Jesus giving that instruction, that the demon-possessed person has to pray and fast or was he giving the instruction for the one that wanted to heal the demon-possessed person?

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Well, I think he’s principally talking to the ones who are seeking to help deliver someone from demonic possession, ‘cause the disciples had tried to cast out this devil from a boy, and Christ wasn’t saying that the boy wasn’t praying and fasting. The disciples were going, “Why couldn’t we do that?” That’s, by the way, Mark 9:29. It’s probably a couple places.

Pastor Jëan Ross: Matthew 17:21, as well.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Yeah. Matthew 17:21, Mark 9:29, Jesus said, “This kind can come forth by nothing but prayer and fasting.” There are some cases that are especially troubling, and Christians need to really focus and fast and pray, ‘cause you’re involved in kind of a titanic battle with spiritual forces and you need to make sure you’ve got the armor of God on and plenty of faith. Now, if the person is being harassed by devils and they have enough spiritual awareness where they can fast and pray also, well, that certainly helps. If a person’s struggling with some demonic harassment, and they’re able to fast and pray for their own soul, by all means. But yeah, principally, he’s talking to the disciples, ‘cause their question is, “Why could not we cast him out?” And He said you’ve got to fast and pray, and I think He’s addressing them.

Robert: Right. So, that means that when you have a certain party that’s having real difficulty and you know there may be some devil possession, it’s better to pray and fast on behalf on that person.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: If a group of members, elders, ministers get together and spend some time in fasting and prayer before they actually meet with the person and pray over them. Part of that fasting and prayer, also, is not because they’re building up gunpowder. What it’s really doing is, when we present ourselves and when our hearts are purified, God is then more able to answer our prayers for another individual. Our intercession is more effective as we are more consecrated, so I think that’s what’s at the heart of that.

Robert: Okay. Great. Well, thanks a lot.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Thanks, Robert. Good question.

Pastor Jëan Ross: We’ve got Kurt, who is calling from Brooklyn, New York. Kurt, welcome to the program.

Kurt: Hi, good afternoon. I mean, good evening, I’m sorry.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: I’m sure it’s afternoon somewhere, so you’re alright.

Kurt: I just wanted to say I’m very excited and nervous at the same time. I listen to the program every chance I get, and I am so excited.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: And this is the first time you’ve called!

Kurt: Thank you.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Yeah, we’re glad you called in.

Kurt: The question that I wanted to ask is for you to help settle something between a friend and I. His question, or his accusation, really, is where he’s able to point out to me several places in the Bible where it states as the dead being unclean, but he points out to several churches where we would have a funeral service and we allow the dead body to be in the sanctuary. He’s basically saying that that’s against the Bible, and in order to argue against it, he would like Biblical references. I can’t go to him and say, “Well, Pastor Doug says that it’s okay.” He pointed out Biblical references to me where it is stated that the dead is unclean, so I wanted to see if I could get an answer to that question.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Well, it’s talking about touching a dead body that is unclean. When anybody dies, sometimes there’s disease. Handling or preparing a dead body can make you unclean. Now, you do have the disciples of Christ that were touching and handling His body when they took Him down from the cross just before the Sabbath. Then, of course, they went back Sunday morning. When a person touched a dead body, they weren’t supposed to be associating or touching with other people until they washed themselves and went through a day of purification. That’s very practical. When we have a body at a church for a funeral, no mortician is in the church, preparing the body and touching the body. Having people file by and do their last viewing, usually folks, if they do, they’re not handling the body. So, in the Bible, really, it was an idea of being contaminated through something that may have killed them.

Pastor Jëan Ross: We also need to bear in mind that during those Old Testament times, the children of Israel were traveling through a wilderness, through a desert, and if somebody died, they had to deal with that body very rapidly, especially in that heat. So, God gave practical principles on how one was to deal with the dead and there was a time period where they had to wash, change their clothes. A day was to pass before they touched somebody else. So, some real practical principles. It’s a little different today. They didn’t have refrigeration the way we do today, so I wanted you to consider that as well.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Yes, but there’s no conflict. The church is not rendered unclean because they wheel in and wheel out a body during a funeral.

Kurt: Okay.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: I’ve never heard of any kind of epidemic being caused by that. So, yeah. If you’ve got a friend that’s looking for a reason not to go to church, that would probably be a diversionary tactic. I can think of better reasons than that. Anyway, good question. Appreciate it, Kurt.

Kurt: Thank you very much.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Thank you.

Pastor Jëan Ross: We’ve got Michelle, who is listening in Brooklyn, New York. Michelle, welcome to the program.

Michelle: Hi. Good evening.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Evening.

Michelle: My question is, once a person acknowledges Sabbath as God’s day of rest, would attending worship services on Sunday be considered worshipping Baal?

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Well, let me just fill in some background a little bit, Michelle. Most Bible Christians realize that…Christmas, for instance, Jesus was not born the 25th of December. In the same way, I think most Christians realize that Sunday, what we commonly call the first day of the week, is not the Sabbath. It’s the day Jesus rose. There’s no Bible command anywhere to keep Sunday as the Sabbath. Once a person knows that, if they go and they visit a church on Sunday, are they worshipping Baal, ‘cause original Sunday came from sun worship that’s connected with Babylon or Egypt or a lot of Pagans. Not necessarily Baal, but a lot of Pagan backgrounds was involved in sun worship. You can go to church any day of the week. There’s no mandate that says you can’t go to church on Sunday and worship God. You can go to church any day you want. As far as fellowshipping, we, at out church, meet on Wednesday night. I don’t know, Pastor. We have Tuesday. You meet Wednesday.

Pastor Jëan Ross: We meet Wednesday.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Yeah. So, different churches meet. There’s nothing inherently wrong with gathering together, but that’s not the Sabbath. Now, if a person begins to honor as the Sabbath, a day that is really set aside for worshipping the sun, then I’d start questioning what their motives are. Once a person knows the truth, Jesus said, “When you know these things, happy are ye if you do them.” So, you see what I’m saying? Part of it is knowledge.

Pastor Jëan Ross: One also wants to consider the example that we are setting for fellow believers. If we are just following tradition, even though we know that it’s not supported scripturally, what type of an example are we to our fellow friends?

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Right. I know a number of people that grapple with it. I know some couples where one is a Sabbath-keeper and the spouse is not. Every now and then, they will accompany their spouse to church on Sunday, or the other one will accompany the spouse to church on Sabbath because they say, “We want to have some unity in the family,” but they’ve made it clear, “This is not my conviction. I’m just wanting to spend time with the family today.” So, it creates some challenges. Anyway, hope that helps a little Michelle, and we appreciate your question.

Pastor Jëan Ross: You know, we do have a study guide, Pastor Doug, dealing with the subject of the Sabbath. We’ve had a lot of questions on that. If you’d like to receive our free resource entitled “Forgotten Day in History”, our Amazing Facts study guide, call our resource line. 800-835-6747, and you can ask for the study guide on the Sabbath, “Forgotten Day in History”. We also have a website dealing with the subject of the Sabbath called SabbathTruth.com.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: That’s got a lot of good information.

Pastor Jëan Ross: Lot of good information there. Resources, scripture…very valuable resources. Our next call is Melissa, and she’s also listening from Brooklyn, New York. Melissa, welcome to the program.

Melissa: Hi. Thank you for accepting my call. My question is that why did God have to prove the statement that Job would serve Him, no matter what? God knows that. God knows Job. Why did He have to prove to the enemy that?

Pastor Doug Batchelor: That’s a good question. First of all, God already knows ‘cause God knows everything. But there are other angels. In other words, what’s happening here on earth is being watched by the heavens. When the devil makes an accusation about God’s justice and fairness, sometimes the Lord needs to allow things to play out. For instance, why didn’t God destroy the devil as soon as he rebelled? He had the power to do it. Why is He allowing the devil to act out his rebellion here on this planet? Well, part of it is because the devil has made some terrible accusations about God. His character, His government, His law, and the Lord is allowing Satan to demonstrate the futility and the error of his accusations. When the devil is accusing God before the whole universe, saying, “None of the people on earth serve you because they love you. They’re only serving you because you give them blessings or you bless them physically. If you take away these blessings, they won’t serve you.” God reluctantly said, “Alright, Satan. I’m going to have to prove you’re wrong.” And He withdrew His protection, and it demonstrated to us today. I mean, Job’s example brings us faith. It demonstrates to the universe that there are people who serve God because they love Him.

Pastor Jëan Ross: You know, there’s also another way to look at that. God, in essence, staked His reputation on Job. That, too many, is really an honor, that God would say, “He’s faithful. He loves me. He knows me. He’s true.” That was really God saying, “I can trust Job with my reputation.” Tremendous honor.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Yeah. Well, He gives us that opportunity, too. Let’s hope we’re faithful.

Melissa: Okay. Thank you.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Appreciate that, Melissa. Thank you.

Pastor Jëan Ross: Next caller is Dawn, and she is calling from New…

Pastor Doug Batchelor: I don’t think Dawn is ready yet. They’re probably still…

Pastor Jëan Ross: Are they still busy getting her ready? Let’s go to Peggy. We’ve got Peggy calling from Queens, New York. Peggy, welcome to the program.

Peggy: Pastor Doug, I have a question. I’ve gotten Isaiah 42:9 and Isaiah 46:9 literally, but I wanted to know what you think about those two.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Alright, let me read this for our friends. Isaiah 42:9, “Behold, the former things are come to pass and new things do I declare. Before they spring forth, I tell you of them.” And, do you want me to read the other verse as well? Isaiah 46:9? Alright. Give me a second. Are you there, Pastor Ross?

Pastor Jëan Ross: “Remember the former things of old, for I am God and there is no one else. I am God and there is none like me.”

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Did you want us to try to touch on that a little bit?

Peggy: Yes, thank you.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Alright. Think for a moment about how intelligent you would have to be to anticipate at what second a person might get off a bus in another country ten years from now. All the circumstances of their being born and the weather and the traffic. It would take a supernatural intelligence to be able to see all those details. Any little thing that changes in history affects everything else. Every atom and molecule interact with the ones around it. Only God, that would be infinite in knowledge, can predict the future with such precision, thousands of years in advance, and God says, “There is none like me, ‘cause I can tell you what’s going to happen before it happens. Years in advance.” I mean, I might be able to tell you what the weather’s going to be a few hours in advance by looking at the sky or the channel.

Pastor Jëan Ross: You know, God sets that forth as evidence that He is God. No other being in the whole universe can declare accurately what’ll happen in the future, but God can. He knows the end from the beginning. And that should give us comfort and hope, because He’s got our future in His hand.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Got a plan for our lives.

Pastor Jëan Ross: That’s right.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: And He can make it happen.

Peggy: Thank you very much. I believe that.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: That’s right. He’s got a plan for you. He’s got a plan for us. By the way, we have a website dedicated to Bible prophecy, and it’s called BibleProphecyTruth.com. I think you can even do .org, just in case you get mixed up. You’ll get there either way. BibleProphecyTruth.com. One of the most popular Amazing Facts websites, talks about the principles of prophecy and how only God can foretell the future.

Pastor Jëan Ross: You know, Pastor Doug, you mentioned a little earlier that you’re going to be down in southern California just in a few days. As we come upon our break, tell us again, where is it?

Pastor Doug Batchelor: It starts Friday night at the White Memorial Church. It’s right by the White Memorial Hospital, which is the intersection of two interstates, so it’s easy to access from the interstate. It’s in downtown Los Angeles. I think it’s Cesar Chavez Road. Anyway, the address is at the Amazing Facts website, and so if our friends will just go to the Amazing Facts website, they’ll see the information. It’s called A Weekend In The Word, and we hope to see everybody there. It’s at Los Angeles. And we’re also doing evangelism training during that time. Anyway, we’re not going away friends. We’re just taking a break for a few important announcements. We will be right back.

[COMMERCIAL BREAK]

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

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Hi, friends. This is Bible Answers Live. If you have joined us somewhere en route, we’re glad you’re on board. This is a Bible question program, and you can call in with your Bible questions. By the way, we do have some lines open right now. Might be some people who forgot or kind of spaced a little bit when Daylight Savings Time came back. If you have a Bible question, that number one more time is 800-463-7297. Call now. There’s a good chance you can get your Bible question on tonight’s program. I just want to remind our friends, Amazing Facts has a plethora of websites to help you in your Bible study. Among the websites, Pastor Ross and I were just in Michigan taping a new series of meetings for teenagers. Matter of fact, I just got an email from, I think, someone up in Alaska. A group up there said they were watching it and it changed their lives. My son went to a youth event this weekend. He wasn’t sure what was planned, and he came back smiling. He said, “Dad. They were showing the MIQ program.” Poor kid, had to watch his dad preach. But, anyway, it turned out really well. So, you just type in MIQTeens.com and you can still watch those programs. Forward the link to your friends. I’ll mention something I almost never mention. There’s a whole lot of good Amazing Facts programs, if you just type in Amazing Facts and go to YouTube. You’ll see, there’s quite an array of broadcasts and programs that we’ve done there, and you can see them as well. Where we going next, Pastor Ross?

Pastor Jëan Ross: I’ve got Raul, who is calling from Washington State. Paul, welcome to the program.

Raul: Hi, Doug. Thank you very much. I had a question on how do I get the armor of God on? How do I put it on, and do you have a book you can send me?

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Well, yes. First of all, I’ll say yes we do have a book. I wrote a book called “The Armor of God”, and we will send that to you. You call our resource number, we’ll send that to you. But very quickly, I want to try and give you a quick answer to your question. Of course, when we talk about putting on the armor of God, it says, “Put on the whole armor. Put on the helmet of salvation. Put on the belt of truth. Take the sword of the Word of God.” So, they’re all symbols. Obviously, we don’t walk around with a sword and we don’t walk around with some war-helmet on. When it talks about the sword, it’s talking about get to know your Bible. When Jesus fought the devil, when He was tempted, He quoted the scripture ‘cause He had it in His head. “Thy Word I have hidden in my heart, that I might not sin.” When it talks about having the helmet of salvation, the sacred senses to your soul are all from the neck-up.

What comes into your ears and your eyes and even your mouth. You’ve got seven openings above your neck, and they’re sacred, and you’ve got to be careful what you watch, what you listen to, what you say, what you eat, and that effects who we are. Asking God to give us that helmet…Think of it like a space helmet where you’ve got a heavenly atmosphere that you’re breathing that’s protecting you. Then, the gospel shoes. In the Bible, your shoes represent your walk. Are you walking with the Lord? Are you going in the right direction? So, it talks about having a sacred walk. It’s hard to fight when you’re sliding. Good shoes keep you from backsliding. So, order the book, and there’s a lot more in there that deals with these principles, but thank you Raul, and hope that’s helpful.

Pastor Jëan Ross: And, by the way, the verse that talks about the armor of God is Ephesians 6:17-18. To receive that free resource, call 1-800-835-6747. You can ask for the book “The Armor of God” and we’ll send that out to you. We have Dawn that is listening on WMCA from New Jersey. Dawn, welcome to the program.

Dawn: Hi. Thanks. Thank you for welcoming me.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Hi, Dawn, and your question tonight? I think we lost Dawn. Is she still there?

Pastor Jëan Ross: Hang on. There we go.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Dawn, you there? Try one more time. Your question?

Dawn: I know that Adam and Eve had two children, Cain and Abel, and that Cain killed Abel. I know they went on to have other children, but at the time Cain killed Abel, he was advancing to the other side of the world. He was nervous about the people over there, what they might do to him. Where did those people come from?

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Well, Cain, when he took his wife and he went eastward, Cain is anticipating that Adam and Eve are going to obey God. God said, “Be fruitful and multiply.” Adam and Eve also had another son named Seth, and you read in Genesis 5:4, it says that they also had sons and daughters. So, it wasn’t just Seth. Cain took his sister. Cain lived 900-something years, but they knew that in 900 years, you’ve got a lot of generations. Look at how many people are in America in 200 years. Can you imagine how populated our country would be in 900 years? So, Cain knew – they were very intelligent back then – that the world was going to be swarming with people, and he would be infamous for being the first murderer. And he said, “Someone’s going to try and take vengeance on me.” So, he was anticipating. And God said, “I’ll put a mark on you, lest anyone that attacks you.”

Pastor Jëan Ross: So, really, his wife was his sister back then.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Right. There’s nothing wrong with it back then. If we think about it, Adam, in a sense, married his sister. They both had the same parents, Adam and Eve. He married his sister and she came out of his rib. So, how do you…yeah. That’s interesting. They must have been kin somehow. Good question, Dawn. Appreciate that, and hope that helps a little bit.

Pastor Jëan Ross: We’ve got Michael, who is calling from Canada, listening in Montreal. Michael, welcome to the program.

Michael: Hi. Thanks for taking my call.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: And your question?

Michael: My question is kind of a loaded question, but I’ll try to simplify it. We all know that God’s omnipotent, and He can see the beginning from the end, right?

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Correct.

Michael: So therefore, He can pretty much see the entire course of history, and He knows our actions before we commit them.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Yup.

Michael: Does God’s omnipotence and His ability to see the beginning from the end, does that effect our free will because God’s aware of our actions before we commit them, so are human beings free to act?

Pastor Doug Batchelor: You’re asking the big question theologians have battled over for centuries. But you also, in your question, really gave the answer. Is there a difference between God knowing and God forcing? Because He knows what will happen because He knows everything, does that mean He is manipulating and making everything happen, or do we still have a choice? If God is manipulating and making it all happen and we’re all just pawns in this cosmic charade, then is there love? If we don’t have a choice to love God, is it love? If a person is forced to love because they’re pre-programmed to do it, if I program a computer to say, “I love you, Doug. I love you, Doug. I love you, Doug.” Does it love me?

Michael: No, it doesn’t.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: So, in order for us to love God, then He really must give us freedom to choose to love Him. So, you really hit on it with your question. There’s a difference between God knowing it and God manipulating it.

Pastor Jëan Ross: You know, it’s also interesting to note, if you look at the example of Judas, Jesus treated Judas with as much love and giving him as much of an opportunity to respond to the Gospel as he did to the other disciples. So, even though Christ knew that Judas would eventually betray Him, He still treated him the same as He did the others.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: He just responded differently, and that was his choice. When Jesus washed the disciples’ feet, Judas could have repented.

Michael: Okay. I kind of understand. So, basically, even though God knows our actions before we commit them, Him only knowing it still maintains our free will?

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Sure. Because He knows what’s going to happen doesn’t mean He’s making it happen. A lot of parents know when their teenagers leave home, that they’re going to do some things that the parents don’t agree with. That doesn’t mean the parents are making it happen, but the kids have freedom and they love them and they say, “You know, they’re just going to have to go out there and make some mistakes.” You know what I’m saying? God loves us. He may know what’s going to happen. He’s not making it happen.

Michael: Okay. Cool. Thank you very much.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Alright, good question. By the way, we do have a book, and it’s “Can A Saved Man Choose To Be Lost?” Talks about free will.

Pastor Jëan Ross: The number for the book is 800-835-6747. It’s free, if you’d call and ask for the book “Can A Saved Man Choose To Be Lost?” Again, that number is 800-835-6747, and we’ll be happy to send that out. We’ve got Jonathan, who is listening online from Nashville, Tennessee. Jonathan, welcome to Bible Answers Live.

Jonathan: Thank you. Thank you.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: And your question tonight?

Jonathan: Yes. My question was, what role do you see the Ark of the Covenant playing in the last day events? If it would be found, if it’s something that would just be lost forever? I was just curious on that possibility.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Well, I’d like to believe that they will, somehow, miraculously locate it. I do believe it’s still in existence on earth. There is a reference, but it’s a vision. It’s a prophecy you find in Revelation 11:19 where it says, “The temple of God was open in Heaven, and there was seen in His temple the Ark of His testament.” It says there were lightnings and vothunderingunderings and an earthquake and a great hail. So, that final earthquake and that great hail that’s connected with the Second Coming sounds like the contents of the Ark will be exalted before the Second Coming. Of course, we have the contents of the Ark in our Bibles. It’s the ten commandments. The Ark is a golden box. The important thing about the Ark were the rocks in the box, which had the Word of God written with the finger of God on them. Everybody here, most of the people listening have got a transcript of the Ark, information in our Bibles. I can tell you exactly what’s in the Ark. I can read it to you. It’s the Word of God, it’s the Law of God. So, that’s the important thing. I’d love for the artifact, the golden box to be found. I’d like them to find good, tangible evidence of Noah’s Ark. It may happen. It may not happen, but that won’t affect my faith.

Jonathan: Right. Right. And I’ve heard stories of it being buried underneath the time of Christ’s crucifixion, so the mercy seed could actually catch blood. I heard a couple other various theories, and I’m not sure if they’re just stories or not.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Well, I’ve heard that before also, and I’ve not really seen any tangible evidence, but I’ve been to Jerusalem a couple of times. Jerusalem is honeycombed with caves, and as near as we could tell, the last time that the Ark was mentioned was during the time of Jeremiah. Actually, I think it’s mentioned last in Hezekiah’s time. Scholars believed Jeremiah, knowing Nebuchadnezzar was going to destroy the temple, he foretold it, he and some priests, they secreted the Ark in a cave somewhere before the destruction of Jerusalem, and it’s probably hidden there today. But, they’ve got a total honeycomb, just a catacomb, it’s all underneath Jerusalem. From graves and caves and every time they dig there, they find something new.

Pastor Jëan Ross: Just to remind the listening friends, if you have a Bible question, we do, Pastor Doug, have just a couple lines that are still open. Give us a call if you have a Bible question. That number is 1-800-GOD-SAYS. That’s 800-463-7297. 800-463-7297. We’ll try and get to your question before the program finishes this evening. Next call is Annette, and she’s listening in Queens, New York. Annette, welcome to the program.

Annette: Hi. Thank you for taking my question.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Sure, and your question is?

Annette: There is a growing movement that states that the date of when the Lord is returning. Isn’t this contrary to the Word of God and direct opposition to the Word of God?

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Yeah. I know of two or three new theories. Of course, every few years, there’s a new theory. I remember when the planets lined up in 1986 or 87, everybody said, “This is it.” Then there was, of course, the Millennial fever during the year 2000, when everyone said, “This is it.” Then you had 1996, which was 2000 years after the birth of Christ. Christ was probably born about 4 BC, actually. Everyone said, “This is it.” Now, you know, the people are talking about the Mayan calendar. Of course, that has nothing to do with the Bible. And they say 2012. They made a movie about that. This is it. So, now there’s a new group that says it’s not 2000 years from the birth of Christ. It’s 2000 years from the death of Christ. So, it’s going to be 2031, Jesus will come back. Jesus said no man knows the day or the hour, and I still believe Him.

Pastor Jëan Ross: Yeah, let me give you the verses there. It’s…actually, it’s mentioned several times. Matthew 24:46, Jesus said, “But of the day and the hour knoweth no man.” You can read about it in Mark 13:32, where Jesus said, “But of the day and of the hour knoweth no man. No, not the angels in Heaven, neither the Son, but the Father.”

Pastor Doug Batchelor: The big question is, what difference would it make? In other words, nobody knows if they’re going to live through this day. Probably some who are listening won’t, just statistically. We’re on 400 stations. Statistically someone is probably going to be listening to the Word of God for the last time. We should be ready all the time. Even if we live…the average is 75 years in North America. Women live a little longer. What is that compared to eternity? We all have a short time. The older I get, the shorter it gets. So, we need to be ready now. The idea of gambling about getting ready because we’ve found a date when He’s coming back. Well, we know He’s coming back. He’s coming back when we die, for one thing. Our next conscious thought will be the Resurrection. Or, we’ll live and reign until the literal Coming. Either way, we’ve got to be ready. People put it off like they do paying their taxes, like I can file the day before it expires. We shouldn’t gamble with eternity that way.

Pastor Jëan Ross: You know, the Bible is so clear that nobody knows the day and the hour when Christ comes, it makes me nervous when someone claims that he knows. Anyone that’s claiming to know when exactly Jesus is going to come, you wonder what is the agenda behind that.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Yeah. They have inside information, they’re claiming. So, hope that helps. Keep in mind that we should be studying the prophesies to know when the time is near. I think the Lord wants us to stay in a state of expectancy. He wants us to believe in the imminence of His coming, but to go around and mark it on the calendar and tell everybody, “This is the date,” is, I think, reckless. I appreciate your question. We do have our website, Bible Prophecy Truth has some studies on the signs of Christ’s nearness, the nearness of His coming.

Pastor Jëan Ross: Alright. Next call is Frank, and Frank is calling from Orlando, Florida. Frank, welcome to the program.

Frank: Hello. Nice to talk to you.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Evening, and your question?

Frank: Yes, sir. Somewhere in the Bible, it mentions that St. Paul rebukes people about getting circumcised, yet he insisted that Timothy get circumcised. It seems a little contradictory. I’m sure there’s probably an explanation for that.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Yeah. Well, Paul does say, for instance, 1 Corinthians 7:19, he says, “Circumcision is nothing. Uncircumcision is nothing. But keeping the commandments of God is what matters.” In other words, circumcision was a covenant God made with Abraham. There may be some medical benefits of circumcision. It’s still practiced in hospitals today, but it’s not…The spiritual covenant aspect of it was circumcision represented a consecration to God. The holy people through who the Messiah would come were the seed of Abraham. Well, the Messiah came. So, that sign, that outward sign in the males, it was fulfilled. If someone practices circumcision for medical benefit or whatever, then it’s a different thing. The reason that Paul had Timothy circumcised, Timothy was half-Jewish. Timothy was going to be more accepted and better able to minister to the Jewish Christians if that was not an obstacle.

As far as Paul was concerned, “If I have to wear a yamaka for me to be able to speak to Jewish Christians, then I’ll wear a yamaka.” Know what I mean? So, it was something that Timothy was able to do to just…I remember once, I went to this one church, and they said, “You can’t preach here unless you wear a tie.” Well, I didn’t believe in ties back then. This was a long time ago. So, I had to pray about that and I finally said, “Alright, I’ll wear a tie, if that’s what it’s going to take to be able to preach to you.” So, I think that’s why Paul circumcised Timothy, just to help avoid the prejudice some Jews would have.

Frank: I see.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: But, yeah, it’s not necessary or salvation. A number of verses talk about that. Good question. Appreciate it, Frank.

Pastor Jëan Ross: Our next caller is Lynn, and she is calling from New York. Lynn, welcome to the program.

Lynn: Hi. Thank you for taking my call. When my husband was alive, we always tithed and made sacrifices in our offerings. A few years ago, I’m in a very bad spot financially, and I was listening to a famous TV evangelist, and he had a live show. The question was, “Do you have to tithe now?” It was by an older woman like me, in a bad position. He said, “No. It’s basically the Old Testament.” But it’s not. There’s, like, dozens of scriptures in the New Testament that says you should tithe. I was just wondering, being that it’s very, very hard, I try and I do it frequently, but the bills are unbelievable. My husband’s been gone for some time now, and I have no family to help me. What’s your feelings about this?

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Well, Lynn, my heart goes out to you. But really, the most important thing is what does the Bible say? And I think you’re right. The principle of tithing is not an Old Testament principle just for Jews. You can go back to before Moses, Abraham paid tithes to Melchizedek. Jacob said, “Lord, if You bring me back home again, all that You give me, I’ll give a tenth to You.” Even in the New Testament, Jesus, in Matthew 23:23, the Jews were making a big deal about tithing from their mint garden. He said, “These are the smaller things. You should pay tithe, but don’t omit the weightier matters.” The principle of tithing is certainly there, and God says in Malachi 3, “Prove me, and see if I won’t open a few of the windows of Heaven.” So, I know tithing is a lot easier when we have reserve. It does require faith when we don’t. But that’s an opportunity to say, “Lord. I don’t know how I’m going to get through, but I’m going to trust you.”

Pastor Jëan Ross: You know, the verse you’re referring to, Pastor Doug, where Jesus said that we ought not to neglect the pain of our tithe, is Matthew 23:23.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Lynn, we do have a study that goes through what the New and the Old Testament says about the principle of tithing.

Lynn: Really?

Pastor Doug Batchelor: We’ll be happy to send you that. It’s called “In God We Trust.”

Lynn: Oh! Okay! Thank you very much!

Pastor Doug Batchelor: It’s got all the scriptures on the subject. I think you’ll really appreciate it.

Pastor Jëan Ross: It’s also important to note, Lynn, that this is one area where God says, “Put Me to the test. Go ahead and set aside that portion that belongs to Me and I’ll bless you. I’ll provide for your needs.” And we can take God at His word.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: And there’s two ways He blesses. One is He opens the windows of Heaven. He does something about the increase from above. And He says, “I will rebuke the devourer.” There are things that gobble up our income. Expenses here below. He says, “I’ll make what you have go farther and I’ll pour more in from above.” So, 90% with God’s blessing goes a lot farther than 100% without it. That’s just my theory.

Pastor Jëan Ross: Absolutely. To get that resource, call 800-835-6747 and ask for the study guide “In God We Trust.” The number again is 800-835-6747. We’re going to go to Joe, who is listening from San Diego. Joe, welcome to the program. Joe from San Diego, you’re on the air.

Joe: Yes. My question is, after God created the heavens and earth and rested the seventh day, can you tell me where the Sabbath was mentioned again for the first time after that?

Pastor Doug Batchelor: First reference we have to the Sabbath after creation in the book of Genesis is in the book of Exodus, when Moses came to the Pharaoh. Before he went to the Pharaoh, he met with the elders of Israel and then the Pharaoh said, “You are causing the people to Sabbath.” The word in the original Hebrew is Shabbat. Pharaoh says, “You are causing them to rest, so I’m going to double their labor.” So, one of the things they discussed when Moses first met with them was keeping the Sabbath. This is before they ever got to Mount Sinai and the Ten Commandments. Then, you have in Exodus 16, I believe it is, when the manna fell from Heaven. Now, Ten Commandments are Exodus 20. Exodus 16…

Pastor Jëan Ross: Just to get back to the previous one, where Moses was talking to Pharaoh, that’s Exodus 5:5.

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Okay. And then you have in Exodus 16, where it says the manna would fall six days a week, but there’d be no manna on the Sabbath. ‘Cause that was a holy day. Now, God still had not spoken the Ten Commandments yet, or written them down. So, the people of God knew about the Sabbath all the way from creation up till the Ten Commandments were given.

Joe: After he argued with Pharaoh about that, the first thing you mentioned. Were they forced to keep the Sabbath or did they keep it?

Pastor Doug Batchelor: Well, the Pharaoh was trying to prevent them from keeping the Sabbath. He said, “I’m going to double your workload and I’m not giving you any straw. You’re going to have to gather your own straw, and you’re going to have to…” Well, he didn’t say he’d double the workload, but they were going to have to keep up the same tally of brick.” So, he was trying to keep them from observing the Sabbath, which has happened several times through history, whenever the people of God have been conquered. But we do have a website that has a whole history on this, Joe, and it’s…Actually, if you type in the word Sabbath in Google, we’re on the first page. It’s one of the most popular websites on the subject. It’s called SabbathTruth.com. Check that out. We have a lesson, too, that we offered already tonight.

Pastor Jëan Ross: Called…what is the name of that, Pastor?

Pastor Doug Batchelor: “The Forgotten Day in History.”

Pastor Jëan Ross: Yes. “The Forgotten Day In History.” If you’d call 800-825-6747, ask for the study guide on the Sabbath, “The Forgotten Day In History”. We’ll also be happy to send that out to you. David is calling from St. Louis, listening on KSIV. David, welcome to the program.

David: Yes, thank you. Praise the Lord. My question would be, where is it found in the Bible where a living soul must reconcile his life with the Lord in stability and his marriage and stay in God’s glory? Where I stay in fellowship with Him. How do I stay in God’s will, my daily walk with Him?

Pastor Doug Batchelor: I think I understand the core of your question. How do we stay connected to God and stay in His will and, of course, that will the influence our work and our marriage. We do have a book, just before I forget, ‘cause we’re going to just about run out of time. We do have a book called “The Will of God” and just make sure and call the number. We’ll send you the book on how do you know the will of God. We’ll send that to you for free, David. But, the main thing is having a devotional life is how you stay connected. The way that you keep the power is through the Word. Jesus is the Word, and as we study His word, as we spend time in prayer, that’s how the love relationship grows between us and God. Oh, I am sorry.

This is the fastest hour of the week, Pastor Ross. It seems like we just get started and build up our momentum, and then the hours gone by. It’s hard to believe. Well, listening friends, this is a pleasure, to be able to get to know you, make some new friends. But I feel a little one-sided. We’d love to hear from you. Please contact us. If you go to the website, there’s a button that says Contact. Kind of like starting an old airplane. Contact! So, if you want to contact us, go to AmazingFacts.org. Let us know who you are, if the program’s been a blessing, and if you’d like to help keep us on the air, a donation is appreciated. God bless. We’ll see you, God willing, next week.

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Life in the Spirit (PB) by Joe Crews

Life in the Spirit (PB) by Joe Crews
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