How Great a Matter a Little Fire Kindles

How Great a Matter a Little Fire Kindles

Date: 08/04/2019 
Russia, Iran, Syria and Islam have all taken turns in the news spotlight... could it be possible that these countries are in Bible prophecy ? In this week's program, Pastor Doug and Pastor Ross explain end-time prophecies materializing in today's newspapers as they answer questions about Gog and Magog & the 144,000. They'll also search through Scriptures to find out if modern-day visions exist, and if marriage will continue in Heaven. Don't miss this week's installment of Bible Answers Liv
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Pastor Doug Batchelor: Welcome, listening friends. Would you like to hear an amazing fact? During World War II, the deadly German U-boats were decimating British ships, so the British came up with an unusual secret plan. They decided to make a gigantic aircraft carrier out of a massive iceberg. After all, icebergs were abundant, free, and unsinkable. Crazy as it sounded, the idea was approved in 1942 by Winston Churchill himself. The proposed frozen warship would be the largest ever built, 2000 feet long and 200 feet wide, more than twice as big as the Titanic and enough space to for 300 aircraft. It would sail the North Seas at a speed of about 8 miles an hour and could withstand waves of 50 feet, giving the British a secret weapon to hunt and destroy U-boats.

They gave the mission the project name of Project Habakkuk, based on Habakkuk 1:5 that says, "Look among the nations, watch and be utterly astounded," but secretly the workers called it Noah's Ark. A small prototype of the frozen ship was built and tested by mid 1943, but then the development of radar gave the British a better ability to track U-boats, so Project Habakkuk was abandoned. Didn't you know the Bible said, a very large ship can be turned around with a very small rudder. Stay with us, friends. We're going to learn more on this edition of Bible Answers Live.

Announcer: You're listening to 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 and our co-host, Pastor Jean Ross.

Pastor Doug: Welcome listening friends to Bible Answers Live. As you can tell from the name of the program, if you have a question about the Bible, give us a call. It is a free phone call. For the next hour or so, we'll be doing our best to answer any Bible-related questions that come in, anything about the word of God or living the Christian life. The number free phone call, 800-God-says. That's (800) 463-7297. My name is Doug Batchelor.

Pastor Jean Ross: My name is Jean Ross. Good evening, friends and Pastor Doug. Let's start the program with a word of prayer. Dear Father in heaven, once again, we thank you for the opportunity to open up your word and study together. We ask your blessing upon this program, be with those listening, and Lord guide us as we open up the scriptures, in Jesus' name. Amen.

Pastor Doug: Amen.

Pastor Jean: Well, Pastor Doug, you opened the program by talking about a rather creative plan that came about during World War II, and that was to build an aircraft carrier out of a giant iceberg. We were just talking before the program about some of the things that they were thinking to do with this giant iceberg that probably looked somewhat like a ship. They were able to put 300 planes, you said, inside this iceberg somewhere.

Pastor Doug: That was the target. Yes, they would be able to store 300 planes, either on the surface of it. They had the ideas about how to plate the top with wood for takeoff and landing and tying down the aircraft. There'd be chambers underneath. They drill right into the iceberg where they-- [chuckles] I'd like to be a sailor on that ship. I wouldn't need air conditioning. It would be like a meat locker, I suppose.

They had some wild ideas about what to do. They were so concerned about the German U-boats. Keep in mind, an iceberg, Only 10% of what you see is above the water. For it to clear the water 50 feet, it had to be 500 feet in length, and so they thought, "Submarines can blast away all day long, it's not going to hurt it, and of course, ice floats."

They thought they'd come up with a great plan, but about the time they finished their first model, they realized that, "We don't have the war supplies to put into this where we figured out how to beat the German submarines and radar had been developed. The allies were now winning the war," and so the project evaporated, but when you read the report about it, it was a pretty ambitious idea. I couldn't figure out how they could turn a ship that was going to be 2000 feet long. That's longer than aircraft carriers today. Then I remembered that verse in the Bible, and it says in James 3:4, "Look at also at the ships, although they are so large and driven by fierce winds and turned, they can be turned by a very small rudder, wherever the pilot desires. Even so the tongue, even though it's a little member can boast great things. See how great a forest, a little fire kindles."

We're reminded in the word that words are very powerful, though they're small. Once spoken, they can't be recalled. Jesus said, "In the judgment, we will give an account to God for every idle word that we speak." I think all of us struggle. We think sometimes we speak recklessly or can God forgive me for the careless things I've said? Of course, the answer is yes, but we have a free offer that talks about how to tame the tongue and just the importance of choosing our words carefully, that we'd like to make available.

Pastor Jean: We have a book that's called Tiny Troublemakers. Written by Joe Crews. It's a classic and it deals with the subject of the power of speech and how we as Christians ought to build people up with what we have to say, versus tear them down. This is our free offer for this evening. For anybody who would like to receive this, we'll be happy to send it to you for free in the mail. Give us a call on our resource phone line. That number is (800) 835-6747. Again, that number is (800) 835-6747. You can ask for the book called Tiny Troublemakers, and we'll be happy to send this to anybody who calls and asks.

Just one more time, friends. If you'd like to receive our free book called Tiny Troublemakers, the number to call is (800) 835-6747 and ask for the book, Tiny Troublemakers. Write down that number because throughout the program, we'll be giving you some other free resources that'll help in your Bible study. (800) 835-6747.

Well, in just a few moments, we're going to begin by taking some of the calls that we have. Again, we want to thank those who are joining us. I believe we have some folks who will be joining us on Facebook in just a few moments. Just a reminder, we do have a lot of additional resources on the Amazing Facts website, amazingfacts.org. All of the resources that we actually share with you, they are actually available for free for download. If you'd like to download it on your computer, or your iPad, or tablet, whatever you might have, even on your phone. You'll be able to read these different books for free online, right there at the Amazing Facts website. It's amazingfacts.org.

Pastor Doug: Amen.

Pastor Jean: Over that, I think we're ready to go to our first caller. We have Ruth listening in Saint Thomas, Virgin Islands. Ruth, welcome to the program.

Ruth: Hi. Good evening.

Pastor Doug: Evening.

Ruth: My name is Ruth David. How are you doing today?

Pastor Doug: Great, and thank you for calling. Your question.

Ruth: My question is, well, I'm from Saint Thomas, Virgin Islands and we just went through two category sized hurricanes, and what I noticed that since these hurricanes from the first maybe two months, everyone was, like almost the whole island was helping each other and praising God and just turning around. Then all of a sudden, they went back to then, a lot of them, back to wicked ways, which is really sad for me because a lot of them are my friends. Like people who didn't talk to me for months, and here, they started talking to me, and then they stopped abruptly after about two months maybe. Yes, after about two months of the hurricane, they just started going back to their normal ways and even worse than before. [crosstalk]

Pastor Doug: Is this a Bible question, Ruth.

Ruth: Yes, because my question is, what are some of the ways that as Christians, we can help the unsaved understand that they're running out of time and there's no time to be evil? Like if you're going to change, just change. There's no time to go back to your vomit per se. As it says in the Bible, a dog going back to his vomit, someone looking in the mirror and forgetting who they were. How do we help people understand without rubbing them the wrong way, without chasing them away from the word of God?

Pastor Doug: There's three things that you can do to try to help a person. One is, of course, you pray for them. The second is that if they're open, you share information. The third is, of course, you be a good witness. Now sometimes, people get frightened by calamities. I remember after 9/11, we had record church attendance here in California. I expect across the country, a lot of churches experienced the same thing that we saw in our church, but then it levels back down to average again after a while.

Fear is not the right reason to serve the Lord. Fear might shake people up and get their attention. A few people will be permanently woken up by some crisis, and they'll turn back to God and they'll stay close to God, but the majority of people, when there's a crisis and they become very spiritual, once they're out of the foxhole, isn't long before they forget. You need a motive better than fear. Motive needs to be love for God and love for your fellow man, and wanting to know God and know his will. Yes, pray for them, be a good witness, and if they're open, share information. We'll pray that there's a revival when that happens.

Pastor Jean: That's the stories that we read about in the Old Testament, where the people of Israel, they would walk away from God and forget his commandments until something terrible would happen, and they'd be oppressed by an enemy. Then, suddenly, they get real religious, and there's a revival that takes place, and the Lord's able to bless them, and then they prosper. Then, when things are going well, they forget God. I think that's true in the experience of an individual. Don’t take for granted the blessings that God gives.

Pastor Doug: That’s right.

Pastor Jean: Next caller that we have is Marcy, listening from Illinois. Marcy, welcome to the program.

Marcy: Hi, thank you so much. I really enjoy your program, and also, I watch Amazing Facts on Sunday mornings on television.

Pastor Doug: Oh, good.

Marcy: My question is-- Well, let me set it up. My dad died two years ago. He was a World War II veteran, and he was 93 years old. Shortly before he passed, my sister was able to lead him to Christ, which we were very happy about.

Pastor Doug: Oh, wow.

Marcy: Now, a few days after the funeral, my sister and I were in his bedroom, and his TV turned on and off by itself. Of course, we thought that it was maybe our dad. Then, there were a few other strange occurrences that happened after that. The ceiling fan lights flickered on and off, for like a period of 30 seconds. Then, my sister that slept in his bedroom after he died, she was awoken in the middle of the night by a nudge. I know what the Bible says about familiar spirits, but I'm just curious as to whether-- Is it possible that our spirit or our soul, is it possible for it to linger somewhat on earth before you pass on to heaven?

Pastor Doug: Well, I appreciate--

Marcy: Can I say one more thing real quickly?

Pastor Doug: Yes.

Marcy: When my husband and I got home, we live 400 miles away, when we came home, we had two of our TVs do the exact same thing. They turned on by themselves, and then turned back off. That happened for about a period of three or four days.

Pastor Doug: All right. Well, let me dive in and ask you a couple of questions and maybe give an answer too. First of all, do you believe that it's possible for the devil or for fallen angels to create signs and to create ghostly happenings?

Marcy: Yes, I do.

Doug: If you were the devil, wouldn't it be--? First, I need to back up and just say, you never know. There are things that happen called coincidences, and electrical flashes, and impulses, and things like that do happen. I had a circuit in my house that I thought was haunted, and I found that it was a rheostat that was shorting out. Things were coming off and on by themselves, you think, "Oh, what does this mean?" Well, it turned out to be purely electrical.

You got to be careful not to say, "Oh, is this a message coming through?" Even if it is, you don't want to assume, "Well, is dad trying to contact us by nudges, and bumps, and flashing TVs and lights, and what would that message be?" The devil wants us to think, the dead aren't really dead and they're not asleep, and that they're communicating with us somehow. The Bible tells us in Isaiah 8, that the living should not be consulting the dead. Moses said that too, very clearly. The devil we know can appear as an angel of light. The devil can pose as the sea spirits, as he did in the book of 2 Samuel. Let's see, I guess it's the end of 1 Samuel.

We need to stick with what the word of God says. I have no question in my mind, that I've seen supernatural events, but what are you going to do about that, if the devil makes things go bump in the night? If you give it more attention, he likes to mess with us. I just ignore it and say, "All right, I already believe that there was a devil before that happened." What's being accomplished by it? I'm in God's hands. These things happen. You know what, if you rebuke the devil and ignore him, he flees from you.

Marcy: Yes. This was over two years ago that he's been gone, and it hasn't happened since. It happened for a short period of time, but I was just confused because I do know that the devil can do things that make you think otherwise. It was just the trauma of losing him and everything, and then for something like that to happen-- [crosstalk]

Pastor Doug: I understand.

Marcy: [laughs]

Pastor Doug: I lost several family members, and you have all these memories of them. Sometimes you wonder, "Is there any way to communicate? Or are they watching us?" These thoughts go through your mind. A lot of it's because your mind is filled with memories of them. Jesus said, "Our friend Lazarus is asleep." You just got to believe that our loved ones are resting in peace, and they're not trying to guide us and haunt us and things like that.

Pastor Jean: We do have a verse. Ecclesiastes 9:5-6 says, "For the living know that they will die, but the dead know nothing, and they have no more reward for the memory of them is forgotten." Verse 6 says, "Also their love, their hatred, their envy have now perished. Nevermore, will they have a share in anything that is done under the sun." Meaning that it's not a dead loved one that might come back and do something to send a message, but they're asleep as the Bible describes death, waiting for the resurrection when Jesus comes, if they're a believer.

The Bible says the dead don't have anything to do with life here on the earth now. There's nothing happening. They don't come back to their homes and that kind of thing. Really, the study guide called, Are the Dead Really Dead? which gets into this in more detail.

Pastor Doug: Perfect.

Pastor Jean: I think you'd find that helpful, Marcy or anybody wanting to see what the Bible has to say about this subject.

Doug: Amen. Well, thank you, Marcy. Appreciate your question.

Speaker 1: Throughout recorded history, tales of ghosts and spirits can be found in folklore in nearly every country and culture. Egyptians built pyramids to help guide the spirits of their leaders. Rome sanctioned holidays to honor and appease the spirits of their dead. Even the Bible tells of a king that used a witch to contact the spirit of a deceased prophet. Today, ancient folklore of spirits and apparitions have gone from mere superstitions, to mainstream entertainment and reality.

Scientific organizations investigate stories of hauntings and sightings, trying to prove once and for all, the existence of ghosts. Even with all the newfound technology and centuries of stories all over the world, there is still no clear-cut answer. How do we know what's true? Why do these stories persist? Does it even matter? We invite you to look inside and find out for yourself. Visit deathtruth.com.

Pastor Jean: Our next caller is Kenny calling from Washington. Kenny, welcome to the program.

Kenny: Good evening, Pastor.

Pastor Doug: Evening. Thank you for calling.

Kenny: My question is, I was reading in Samuel about when the Lord told Saul to destroy the Amalekites. I went a little further with it, and I was curious, in the Bible dictionaries that I've read, they say that the Amalekites came from Esau's grandson, Amalek.

Pastor Doug: Correct.

Kenny: I'm confused on it because the Amalekites are in Genesis 14, before Esau was even born.

Pastor Doug: Some of the names are repeated. You'll find even in the-- In other words, Amalek, there may have been more than one. You'll find in Genesis 5, when it talks about the genealogy of Cain and then you read about the genealogy of Seth, they had some kids that were the exact same names that it makes very clear are from different families. You're going to find a lot of Eliezers in the Bible and some other names are repeated. That may have been a different Amalek, but I think the Amalek, the desert dwellers were descendants of a son of- or wasn't a son, or may have been a grandson of Esau, I forget.

Kenny: Yes, he's the grandson.

Pastor Doug: I think that the one you're going to find earlier in Genesis is just-- It's a repeat of the name.

Kenny: Okay, that's what I thought, but I wasn't sure because I couldn't find any place in the Bible where it actually specifically said that Esau's grandson Amalek was the descendant or the-- [crosstalk]

Pastor Doug: Father of the Amalekites. Yes, most commentators believe that because where Esau settled and where this nation arose was the same area.

Kenny: Exactly, yes. Okay, well, thank you very much. I just wanted to use another resource. [laughs]

Pastor Doug: Okay. Well, thanks. That's been my understanding, and I appreciate your question.

Pastor Jean: The next caller that we have is Steve, listening from Washington. Steve, welcome to the program.

Steve: Thank you. I just am curious to know, when Jesus died on the cross, did the animal sacrifice system stop on that day when the or did it actually stop until the temple was destroyed in 70 AD.

Pastor Doug: Well, the actual sacrifice on that Passover was interrupted by the death of Jesus. The temple curtain was torn and there was an earthquake. We don't think the sacrifice was completed that particular Passover, but I'm pretty sure the Jews reinstituted the sacrificial system and went through all the motions. Matter of fact, I think the historian Josephus says they did, up until the temple was destroyed in 70 AD.

When Christ died and the veil was torn in the temple, keep in mind, there's two tearings that happen when Jesus was tried and executed. The high priest tore his garments, which he was never supposed to do because we now have a new priesthood, we are a loyal priesthood. The temple was torn because Jesus said, "Destroy this temple and in three days, I will raise it up, speaking of the body of Christ, the church." That's why the veil in the temple was torn.

We have a new temple, but yes, I'm sure the Jews, they probably went through the motions of sacrifices, again, until the temple was actually destroyed in 70 AD. Then, they've not practiced that from that day to the present.

Steve: Great. Thank you very much. [crosstalk]

Pastor Doug: All right, I appreciate. Good question.

Pastor Jean: Next caller that we have is Phil, and he's listening from New York. Phil, welcome to the program.

Phil: Thank you very much. I appreciate it. I just want to say to begin with, you really have a great show. You know your stuff like the back of your hand, but you speak plainly, and I think you're getting right.

Pastor Doug: Well, thank you.

Phil: You're welcome, sir. My question is this, Russia and Iran traditionally, historically, have been enemies, but now they are allies and that alliance extends to include the Assad regime in Syria, Hezbollah in Lebanon, Hamas, and the Houthis in Yemen. My question is, are we seeing biblical prophecy materialize in today's newspapers? Is this the beginning of the war of Gog and Magog?

Pastor Doug: All right. That's interesting you would ask that question because I just talked about that this weekend. There's a two-fold answer to your question. Will Islam have a role in last day prophecy? I think the answer is yes. The second, and Pastor Ross can tell you the chapter, but there are prophecies in Revelation where it talks about the seven seals that deal with Islam. Some of them are in the past, there are still some prophecies and things that will happen in the future.

In the second to last chapter of Daniel, it's interesting that it mentions this king of the north, and it talks about several nations. It says Edom and Moab, and the people of Amman, and Egypt, and the Ethiopians, and the Libyans, and talks about all these nations. Presently, they're all Islamic nations, but I don't know that we need to take that literally. Gog and Magog in the Old Testament, they were enemies of God's people. You'll find them mentioned both in Genesis 10 and Ezekiel 38 and part of Ezekiel 39. It says Gog and Magog lead, the whole world, it says, many people with them. It talks about the Libyans, and it talks about nations to the north and nations to the south, and Egypt, and it says, they all form this alliance that attacks Israel.

Gog and Magog were enemies of God's people. It represents Gog. Magog means from the matrix or came out of Gog, the children of Gog. It's talking about a two-fold, a union of well, in the beast, dragon, or false prophet come against the people of God in the New Jerusalem in the last days. I don't think it's highlighting Russia, but what's happening now with Russia, Russia is fighting a proxy war with the United States now through Syria, and Syria is fighting with Russia through the rebels. It's like Vietnam all over again, where the Russians were supplying the North Vietnamese and America was supplying the South Vietnamese, and we were fighting each other on someone else's land.

That's beginning to happen again now in the Middle East, which is troubling, because I think America is mentioned in the last day prophecy in Revelation 13. It's a big subject. You got anything to add to that?

Pastor Jean: I was just going to add, I believe that if it's not posted yet, that the sermon you just preached on battle of Armageddon-,

Pastor Doug: Armageddon.

Pastor Jean: -probably would have a lot of good information. That might be on your Facebook page?

Pastor Doug: Yes. Actually, I think it is. I did a three-part series. I just finished on Armageddon. Yesterday, I talked about Gog and Magog. You just go to my Facebook page, scroll down a few posts and you'll see that.

Pastor Jean: You also asked about Islam in Bible prophecy, you'd read about in Revelation 9 under the fifth and the sixth trumpet. A number of Bible commentators all the way back to the early reformers identified the fifth trumpet has been the rise of Islam. The sixth trumpet has been the expansion of Islam, in particular, during the Ottoman Empire. Kind of an interesting study, very detailed description given. Many scholars believe that's describing Islam in Bible prophecy.

Pastor Doug: Thank you very much for your question. We appreciate that. Do we have time for one more before the break?

Pastor Jean: We've got, let's see, Joy listening from Kansas City, Missouri. Joy, welcome to the program.

Joy: Thank you very much.

Pastor Doug: Hi, Joy, you'll probably need to turn your radio off or you're going to hear everything twice.

Joy: I have no radio on. I have no radio on.

Pastor Doug: Okay.

Joy: I had the broadcast before this back on, so Jean. Anyway, I have a quick question. I know it says to work out through salvation with fear and trembling. I can't remember where that is. I was just wondering, do Christians have fear before they die?

Pastor Doug: Do Christians what before they die?

Joy: Do they have any fear?

Pastor Doug: I tell you what, if you don't mind staying on the line, Joy, I'm going to come back. We took your question just before our halftime break. Friends, don't go away, we're coming right back and doing more Bible questions. We see those of you who are lined up. If there are some who still want to call in with your question, that number again is 800-God-says, 800-463-7297. We're going to take a quick break, and we're going to start off the second half with Joy's question about Christians and fear. Don't go away.

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Announcer: Everybody Bible question you have answered moves you one step closer to the fullness of God's will for your life, so 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 7:00 PM and 8:00 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 Pastors Doug Batchelor and Jeann Ross for more

Bible Answers Live.

Pastor Doug: Welcome back listening friends to Bible Answers Live. If you've tuned in somewhere along the way, this is a live international interactive Bible study, and you're invited to call in with your questions. We've got a few callers lined up here and we interrupted Joy's question. Joy was asking a question about the passage that says, "Work out your salvation with fear and trembling.

Pastor Jean: Philippians 2:12.

Pastor Doug: What does it mean? Do we need to fear before that we can be saved? Well, when it talks about fear there, it's not talking about living in fear, because Jesus said over and over, "Fear not." I never counted, but I think Dwight Moody said he counted 365 times in the Bible that it says, "Do not be afraid or fear not." That's one fear, not for every day of the year. Then in Revelation, it tells us, "The fearful will be in the lake of fire." Is it 1 John? "Perfect love casts out fear, for fear has torment." God does not want us to live in worry and in fear, he wants us to have peace.

Pastor Jean: The verse you're referring to is 1 John 4:18.

Pastor Doug: There it is, 1 John 4:18. To answer your question, God doesn't want us living in fear, but being a God-fearing person is talking about someone who has a reverence and understanding the awesomeness of God, so that being God-fearing, it is a kind of an awe. Any of the great prophets when they saw God, they felt this holy terror, but it's not the fear where you run from God. That's what the lost do. It's a love and a fear where you run to God.

When Daniel saw the Lord, he fell down before Him, and John and Ezekiel, and-- Who else am I leaving out? All the Bible prophets. Peter, James, and John on the Mount of Transfiguration, when they saw Jesus glorified, they hid their faces from the glory. We should be afraid of sin. Just like, I don't walk around afraid of rattlesnakes, but if I see a rattlesnake, I don't grab it. I've got a healthy respect. Christians ought to be afraid of sin. When it says, work out your salvation with fear and trembling, it means just be afraid to do anything that would hurt God or separate you from God through disobedience. Does that help a little bit, Joy?

Joy: Yes, thank you. That makes good sense.

Pastor Doug: All right. Thank you so much for your question. Let's see who's lined up.

Pastor Jean: Next caller that we have is Barb, listening from Washington. Barb, welcome to the program.

Barb: Thank you. Yes. My question was, in the day when God had Noah build the ark and was going to destroy the world, what was the gross sin that the people were committing that sent God to send destruction? Was their fallen angels or giants intermingled with the women on the earth? Are we doing these things today that cause the judgment? Because it says, "In times it will be like in the day of Noah."

Pastor Doug: All right, good question. First of all, we know what the sin was because he read in Genesis 6, "The thoughts of men's hearts were only evil continually." There was an impurity of heart. Then it says that there was violence that filled the land. Now, there's a common misunderstanding that when it says, "The son--" In Genesis 6, it says, "The sons of God saw the daughters of men that they were fair, and took wives of all whom they chose." The sons of God there are the descendants of Seth. When they began to intermarry with the daughters of Cain, they lost their distinctive holiness through marrying unbelievers. It's not talking about the sons of God there being aliens.

Now, proof for that would be is if you go to 1 John 3, where it says, "Behold, what manner of love the Father has bestowed on us, that we should be called sons of God." I think that these are the sons of God. Does that help a little bit? Are we making the same mistakes today that they made back in Noah's day? Yes, and then some, because Jesus said, "Not only as it was in the days of Noah," Jesus said, "as it was in the days of Lot." Meaning, the conditions of Sodom and Gomorrah, which are pretty rampant in the world today.

Yes, I think Billy Graham said-- Actually, I've heard it attributed to Billy Graham. I've heard it attributed to his wife, Ruth Graham that, "God is going to either need to apologize to Sodom and Gomorrah or our world is facing imminent judgment." Yes, you're on the right track. I think the very sins that were the problem back in the days of Noah of violence, impure thinking, and immorality. It says, "In the last days, the love of many will wax cold." All these things are happening today. Thank you, Barb. We have a lesson that talks about the signs of Christ coming, that we'd like to send you a free copy, if you'd like.

Pastor Jean: All you'll have to do is give us a call on our resource phone line, which is (800) 835-6747, and ask for the study guide called Ultimate Deliverance. Talks about the second coming of Christ and gives you signs of His second coming. Again, the number is (800) 835-6747. Ask for the study guide called Ultimate Deliverance. Next caller is, we have Dennis, listening from Arizona. Dennis, welcome to the program.

Dennis: Thank you. How are you all doing this evening?

Pastor Doug: Doing well. Thank you.

Denis: Okay. My question comes out of Ecclesiastes 9:5, where it says, "For the living know that they shall die, but the dead know not anything, neither have they anymore a reward," and this is the part that I have a question about, "for the memory of them is forgotten." Now does that mean that the person who dies, their memory is no more? It mustn't mean that, right, because I still remember loved ones that have passed away?

Pastor Doug: Well, I think that Solomon is looking beyond one generation. He's saying, for the most part, when people die and the others go on with life within a couple of generations, they're pretty well forgotten. The living who are living, experienced life, they're aware. Matter of fact, if you look at Verse 4, it says, "For him--" This is Ecclesiastes 9:4. "For him who is joined to the living, there's hope, for a living dog is better than a dead lion."

He's just basically saying that even though a lion might be it known as a majestic creature, once it's died, it's not conscious of anything. A living dog is more majestic than a dead lion. Has more dignity and more purpose. It's not that when people die, they're not thinking any memories at the moment. That doesn't mean when they're resurrected, then I can remember anything because that's kind of like reincarnation, where you have no memory of your past life.

Of course, we're going to remember and will be judged according to our work, so we'll have some knowledge of that. This is basically seen as the generations go by, most people are forgotten. That's a theme that runs through Ecclesiastes. He says, the futility of all this stuff that you do and you build, all of Solomon's, the gardens and temples that he built and his houses, they're all gone. They were the most magnificent in the world, but within a few generations, they fell apart.

Dennis: Yes, thank you very much.

Pastor Doug: All right. Hey, thank you. I appreciate your question.

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Pastor Jean: Next call is Renee, listening from Stockton, California. Renee, welcome to the program.

Renee: Hello.

Pastor Doug: Hi, is this Renee?

Renee: Yes, it is.

Pastor Doug: Your question.

Renee: My question is about vision. Does God still do visions today?

Pastor Doug: Yes. Pastor Ross will help me find it. It's into Joel 2, talks about, "In the last days, I'll pour out my Spirit on all flesh." He says "The last days and your sons and your daughters will see visions. Your old men will dream dreams and young men will see visions." I think is what it says.

Pastor Jean: That's Joel 2:28.

Pastor Doug: Joel 2:28.

Renee: Joel 2. What is it that every since I've seen a vision, I've been so scared? I've changed my life drastically for the good. Does that still count for good, or does it mean that I'm lost and I didn't believe the word, and I didn't change until I seen the visions or what?

Pastor Doug: Well, if God has spoken to you, and God does sometimes speak to an individual through a dream or a vision to try to capture their attention, and you're responding to that warning, then the Bible says in Ecclesiastes-- It is Chapter 18? Where he says that, "If the wicked person turns from their sins, God will forget all of their wickedness and they'll live, but if they do not listen to the warnings from God and they don't turn, they'll die in their sins." The Lord is pleading with us to turn. I think it's Ezekiel 18.

Renee: I was hoping that the probation because I know you guys talk about probation is going to be up because for a long time, I've been studying the word and I've been changing slowly. Over the period of time, I backslid a few times, and I was just hoping that God didn't give up on me and my probation is up and I'm lost. I just don't want to be lost.

Pastor Doug: Amen. Well, that's good. The Holy Spirit's working on you. I'm worried about the people that have no concern. If you're sensitive to the voice of the Spirit and if you're still feeling the conviction of the Spirit, that's the gift of the Holy Spirit because one of the things the Holy Spirit does is convict. Renee, don't be discouraged, but do listen to what God says and His word. Don't put more credence in a vision than you would in what the Bible says, but God may speak to you personally through a vision or a conviction, but mostly, it's follow the word and you're safe. [crosstalk] You're building on the rock when the storm comes.

Renee: Okay. I've been following it and stuff, but like I said, it was just changing me slowly. I've been backsliding, but this time, I'm really serious. I'm not playing no more.

Pastor Doug: You know what will really help you, and I promise you, I promise you, if you've not done it before, if you sign up for the Amazing Facts Bible study guide, going through this series, it's a series of Bible studies, it will inspire you with more power through the study of the word.

Renee: I have already done the whole 14 series. I've done them all already. It's been--

Pastor Doug: Well, we got 28 of them. We've got 28. You maybe haven't done the last 13.

Renee: Okay, I've done. 14.

Pastor Doug: If you go online-

Pastor Jean: You're halfway through it.

Pastor Doug: -and you'll get-- The best is yet to come.

Renee: I will.

Pastor Doug: You can contact Amazing Facts. You can do them online or they'll send you the actual studies.

Pastor Jean: Just call our resource phone line, tell them you'd like to continue with the Amazing Facts correspondence Bible school, and we'll finish up. You'll end up doing all 27 lessons. The number is (800) 835-6747 and ask again to enroll in the free Amazing Facts Bible school program.

Speaker 2: Did you know Amazing Facts has a free Bible school that you can do from the comfort of your own home? It includes 27 beautifully illustrated study lessons to aid in your study of God's word. Sign up today for this free Bible study course by calling 1-844-215-7000. That's 1-844-215-7000.

Pastor Jean: Our next caller is Courtney, listening from Michigan. Courtney, welcome to the program.

Courtney: Thank you.

Pastor Doug: Thanks for calling.

Courtney: Yes, all right. Good evening.

Pastor Doug: Evening.

Courtney: I praise God for what you do. My question was, is it possible to have grieved away the Holy Spirit but to still, by much resistance, but to still desire him? I know you kind of just answered that. [chuckles]

Pastor Doug: With the previous caller a little bit, but I think you're being more specific about it. Well, first of all, is it possible to grieve away the Spirit? Yes. Most people I talked to that are concerned they've grieved away the Spirit, in my opinion, they haven't, they're just under a great conviction. That's usually the Holy Spirit working on them. When you look at the examples in the Bible of people that grieve away the spirit like Judas, or Balaam, or King Saul, or There's a number of stories where people just, they despaired God wanted to speak to them, they committed a series of grievous sins. Saul killed the priests and prophets, and God finally stopped talking to him and he ended up falling on his own sword.

Peter, when he denied Christ-- Three times he denied Christ. Then Jesus looked at him with a look of love, and he went out and he wept bitterly. Jesus did ask him, "Peter, do you really love me? Do you love me? Do you love me?" Well, he ended up becoming one of the greatest apostles. He obviously didn't commit the unpardonable sin, but he was under great conviction for his denial.

Now, some of us have denied Christ. All of us probably listening have at some point denied Christ in our behavior. It's persistence in doing that, that leads to grieving away the Holy Spirit. God is very patient. Praise God. I'd be in trouble if he wasn't patient. He's very patient with us and he works with us-

Courtney: Very.

Pastor Doug: -over the course of years. He loves us more than a parent loves their child. Like the prodigal son who wandered for years and yet the father received him back. If we hear God calling and we respond, He will always receive us with open arms. Grieving away the Holy Spirit means you've really lost your capacity to even repent and come home, but if a person still has a desire to turn back to God, that's the Holy Spirit working in their heart.

Pastor Jean: All right. Our next caller that we have is, let's see, Brian. Brian listening from New York. Are you there?

Brian: Yes. Hello. Thank you for taking my call. Good evening.

Pastor Doug: Hi, thank you.

Brian: My question concerns Revelation 7, where it talks about the 144,000 in Revelation 7:4. Then also farther down at that chapter, Revelation 7:9, it mentioned a number which no man could number. I've always had concerns with that 144,000 because my understanding of that, reading the whole chapter, is that it seems to describe the number of faithful people who will be on the earth when Jesus comes the second time. [crosstalk]

Pastor Doug: Are you wondering, is that the only amount that's saved?

Brian: No, I know that's not the only amount that's saved, but is that going to be the only amount of people living on the earth who never see death that are faithful that will be saved? Because I see the population of earth is 7.6 billion, and if we're saying, okay, when Jesus comes, in addition to the people that will be resurrected, it's only 144,000 that will actually be living on the earth that are faithful that will be translated.

Pastor Doug: No, I don't think so. I think that the key to the 144,000 is in the number. When you look at the number 12, that was an important number to Jesus. He picked 12 apostles and when Judas killed himself, Acts 1, they decided to elect one more to replace him so they would preserve the number 12. You remember?

Brian: Yes.

Pastor Doug: God not only saved the 12 apostles but there was 120 in the upper room that got filled with the Holy Spirit at Pentecost, and then a great multitude was baptized through their preaching. I think the number is a key to a special group that are like last day apostles. Now, Jesus had 12 apostles that went to the lost sheep of the house of Israel for his first coming. When it comes to the second time, he's going to have 12 times 12,000. This is sort of a symbol for the last day apostles that do a mighty work, and there's a great conversion, a great revival of people that are saved through their influence.

How many will be living when Jesus comes? Well, I think there's a great multitude. Even if you had a 10 million and when Jesus comes, we almost have 8 billion in the world now and suppose there's 10 billion in the world. If he's got 10 million when he comes, it's still not very many [chuckles] I think though compared to the world. The saved will be in, they will be the minority when Jesus comes.

Jesus had few there be that find it, but I think it's going to be a lot more than 144,000. That number is a- it represents leadership. You had 12 tribes in the Old Testament, 12 judges in the old Testament, 12 princes in the Old Testament, 12 apostles in the New Testament. 12 represents the leaders. The 144,000 is a group of spiritual leaders. I have a book on that. I'll send you a free copy.

Brian: Sure. Thank you.

Pastor Doug: Would you like that? Pastor will also give you the number.

Brian: Yes, please.

Pastor Jean: The number to call is (800) 835-6747. You can ask for the book called Understanding the 144,000. It's called, Who Will Sing the Song. The number again is (800) 835-6747. You can ask for the book, Understanding the 144,000. We'll be happy to send this to anybody who calls and asks. The next caller that we have is Chris and he is listening in New Mexico. Chris, welcome to the program.

Chris: Hello? Can you guys hear me?

Pastor Doug: Yes.

Pastor Jean: You're on the air.

Chris: All right, good evening. I have a question that has really bothered me for quite some time, and it's a reference to marriage. Matthew 22:29-30. Jesus is responding to one of the Pharisees' question that says there's no marriage in heaven. I'm just paraphrasing. My question is, marriage is a good thing. I've been married for 12 years. I love my wife and sometimes I think about that and it makes me sad because I don't want there not to be marriage, so why would Jesus say that?

Pastor Doug: Well, I think the key is, is the word marry is a verb. He doesn't say that you're not going to have a spouse. Let me explain that. God created marriage. He gave Eve to Adam. He performed their wedding. When Adam and Eve get to heaven, assuming they're both saved, God does not hand them divorce papers.

The scenario that the Sadducees gave to Jesus was, one woman married to seven men and who is she going to be married to in heaven? Jesus sort of dismisses it and said, "Look, in the resurrection, they don't get married and--" but they're like the angels, and there'll be no procreation probably in heaven, but I don't think if your best friend is your spouse that God says, when you get to heaven, "Congratulations, you made it. Here's your divorce papers."

Now, for someone like David who's had 10 wives and who knows how many concubines, or Solomon that had like 300 concubines and 700 wives. I get them mixed up, I'm sure he did too. That doesn't mean that they're going to be married to all these people in heaven. There are no new marriages in heaven because we are not going to procreate for like the angels.

God told Adam and Eve, "Be fruitful and fill the earth." Well, the earth is going to be populated by the redeemed. God's not going to need procreation. If we married and procreated in the new earth, pretty soon we'd be all falling off the planet like bunnies, just it'd be too many people, but will you and your wife still have the ability to be married in heaven? I think so.

Chris: Thank you. [crosstalk]

Pastor Doug: It doesn't mean there's new marriages, but I don't think that God is dissolving the old relationships.

Chris: All right, thank you.

Pastor Doug: All right, thanks a lot. God bless.

Pastor Jean: The next caller that we have is, I believe, Lola listening from Charlotte, North Carolina.

Lola: Good evening.

Pastor Doug: Evening. Thank you for calling.

Lola: Pastor, my question, when Jesus comes and the saved go to heaven, are their physical bodies immediately change to perfect form, like the height and the way the appearance, just like when he first created at Adam and Eve, or do they grow into perfection slowly?

Pastor Doug: That's a good question. Well, first of all, it says in 1 Corinthians 15, that we're changed in a moment in the twinkling of an eye at the last trump, so when the Lord comes, we go through an immediate physiological change from our corruptible bodies. The Bible says, when we get these incorruptible bodies, we get glorified bodies like Jesus had, but Jesus' body was a normal body. When He rose from the dead and He walked down the road in Luke 23 with the two disciples on the road to Emmaus, they thought he was just another person.

Then, you read in Malachi 4, it says, "They shall go forth and grow up as calves of the stall." I think that for who knows the first thousand years in heaven, we're going to continue to grow and mature to what the perfect plan was for our glorified bodies. What age will we be? Well, it's going to be a perfect age of maturity. We'll probably look like we did when we were 25 or 26 in our prime. Jesus died in his prime, he was 33. Somewhere in there where don't have your wrinkles yet and you're perfect and strong. Am I answering your question?

Lola: Yes, Pastor. What was that verse again? Ephesians?

Pastor Doug: Well, 1 Corinthians 15 is where it talks about, we are transformed. Philippians says we'll get a body like his glorified body. I don't remember that. It's like, Philippians 2, 5 or something.

Pastor Jean: Then Malachi 4:2 talks about how we're going to grow up in heaven.

Pastor Doug: Yes.

Lola: Okay, thank you so much.

Pastor Doug: Thank you. Appreciate your call. We got time for-- Two minutes. Let's see if we can get one more quick call in.

Pastor Jean: All right. We got Rebecca, listening from Michigan. Rebecca, welcome to the program.

Rebecca: I had a question. I was doing one of your devotionals and I got stuck on a Bible verse. Romans 14:5-6.

Pastor Doug: Is that the part where it says one man regards one day above another, another man regards every day alike?

Rebecca: Yes.

Pastor Doug: Are you wondering, does that mean that we're not to regard a day anymore, there's no Sabbath?

Rebecca: No, I just got a little confused. It's talking about the ceremonies and the festivals, and I just got a little kind of confused on that.

Pastor Doug: All right. Well, let me see if I can help you a little bit. Back when Paul wrote this, a lot of the Jewish converts to Christianity were telling the Christian converts, the Gentile converts that they needed to keep the Jewish fast days and they needed to keep the holy days, and Paul was saying, "Look, if you're going to regard a day, regard it under the Lord. If you're not, then to the Lord you don't regard it." In other words, live for God either way.

The Christians, the Gentile Christians were not being required to keep the Jewish ceremonial days in the Jewish fast days. Of course, this is separate and distinct from the Sabbath that we have every week, one of the 10 Commandments, but they had gotten mixed up in what animals they could eat because they were afraid once an animal was offered to a pagan god, they could no longer eat it, even if it was a clean animal, and Paul was saying, "Look, if your faith is weak and you just eat vegetables, don't judge somebody that eats the meat." He was just talking about some issues that were going on in the church back then.

Pastor Jean: We have a book called Feast Days and Sabbaths, which actually look at this verse and explain the difference between the ceremonial laws and Sabbath. We'd be happy to send it to you, Rebecca or anybody who calls and ask. The number is (800) 835-674.

Pastor Doug: Thank you very much, listening friends. You hear the music in the background. We want to remind you that Amazing Facts is only here because of people like you that listen and keep us on the air. If you'd like to support the ministry, we'd love to hear from you. Just go to amazingfacts.org and you can click donate. God bless, we'll study His Word together again next week.

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