Which Is God ?

Which Is God ?

Date: 08/18/2019 
Studying the Bible often brings many questions or confusions. In this installment of Bible Answers Live, Pastor Doug and Pastor Ross peruse through the Bible to help callers clear doubts about forgiveness, the Godhead and the first angel's message. Pastor Doug also elaborates on Scriptures about the pope and the beast, and end-time signs. Tune in to learn and with God's blessing, understand more of His Word. Open your Bible with us !
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Pastor Doug: Hello listening friends? This is Doug Batchelor. Would you like to hear an amazing fact. Among the first wave of English settlers that set foot on Plymouth Rock in 1629 was a Puritan named John Endecott, who came to serve as the first governor of the Massachusetts Bay Colony. In approximately 1630, as his children looked on, Endecott planted one of the first fruit cheese to be cultivated in the new world. It was a pear sapling imported from his estate across the Atlantic.

At the time, he said, "I hope the tree will love the soil of the old world and no doubt when we have gone the tree will still be alive." The tree did outlive John Endecott and his children's children and many generations that followed. By 1763, colonists noted that the tree, dubbed the Endecott pear tree was already very old and showing signs of decay, but still had continued to thrive and bear fruit. In fact, in 1809, the tree had such notoriety that even president John Adams received a special delivery of its pears.

After holding fast through scorching heat, freezing cold and multiple hurricanes which battered the region in the 19th century, the tree became a cherished fixture and the community erected a wooden fence to protect it. As early as 1852, folks were already proclaiming Endecott's pear tree as the oldest cultivated fruit tree in North America. The old tree was nearly destroyed by vandals in 1964, who chopped off the branches and cut the trunk off about six feet above the ground. Still, it recovered and sprouted new branches and more fruit.

Although its pears have been described as medium in size, unattractive and coarse-textured, the trees amazing tenacity overshadows its mediocre fruit. Today, the tree is surrounded by a chain-link fence on an inconspicuous plot of land, hidden behind an office building on Endecott street in Danvers, Massachusetts. It might be hard to believe, but this original American settler is still alive today, and still bearing fruit after 383 years. Friends, the Bible says there's many things a man can learn from a tree. Stay with us, we're going to learn more as Amazing Facts brings you this edition of Bible Answers Live.

Speaker 1: 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 John Ross.

Pastor Doug: Now, if you have a Bible question, friends, just pick up the phone, we have lines that are open and if you call now a good chance of getting your question on tonight's program. 800, God says, that's 800-463-7297 maybe you weren't ready, got your pencil. Bible questions, call this number 800-463-7297. My name is Doug Batchelor.

Pastor John: My name is John Ross. Good evening, friends and Pastor Doug as usual, let's go ahead and start the program with a word of prayer. Dear Father in heaven, we thank you that we have this opportunity to study the Bible together. We ask the Holy Spirit once again to come and guide our hearts and our minds. Be with those who are listening, Lord, and may we all come to a clear and a full understanding of what the Word says because you said we shall know the truth and the truth will set us free. Be with us this evening in Jesus name, amen.

Pastor Doug: Amen.

Pastor John: Pastor Doug you opened the program by talking about a remarkable tree. We know trees live for a long time but this one first planted by the early settlers that came over from Europe to the United States and I understand it's still living today?

Pastor Doug: Yes.

Pastor John: Producing pears?

Pastor Doug: Still produces pears. I believe this because you've been to our cabin up in the hills. When we moved to that land 40 years ago, there were old fruit trees there from settlers that came during the gold rush. Those fruit trees as of last week were still there out in the field, [chuckles] and some of the original trees and again, the pears aren't that good but they're pretty tenacious and so I believe every word of it. Imagine that. That could be what David was thinking of when he said in Psalm one, if you go to the second verse, speaking about a man who survives and thrives, it says his the light is in the law of the Lord and in his law, he meditates day and night.

He will be like a tree planted by the rivers of water that brings forth its fruit in season, whose leaf will not wither and whatever he does, will prosper. Again, the Lord says that those who are faithful their days in heaven will be like the days of a tree. Isaiah 65:22. David was comparing a person who listens to the law of the Lord and loves the law of the Lord and follows it, that person will be like a tree that is planted, and that is fruitful. The Lord wants us to have the fruits of the Spirit in our life, and a determination to put the Word of God before us and by His grace and spirit to obey His law helps us to have fruitful lives.

There might be people out there wondering, you don't hear much about it these days, but the truth has not changed. God still wants Christians to keep the 10 commandments, not to be saved but because we are saved and Jesus said, "If you love me, keep my commandments," If you'd like to better understand this relationship between love the Lord and the law, we have a special offer for you tonight.

Pastor John: We have a study guide that is called Written in Stone. We'll be happy to send this to anybody who gives us a call. Again, the study guide is called Written in Stone and the phone number to receive this free resource is 800-835-6747. That is our resource line. Again, the number is 800-835-6747. You can ask for the study guide cold Written in Stone, and we'll be happy to send that to anybody who calls and asks. Pastor Doug we also have some folks who are listening via the internet outside of North America and they can also participate in this free offer by simply going to the Amazing Facts website and they can actually do this Bible study for free online.

They can actually study this lesson called Written in Stone. It's all about God's law, and I think it'll be a great blessing to those who study it. Again, if you have a Bible-related question, friends, the number to call here in studio this evening is 800-463-7297, 800-463-7297. Pastor Doug, we're ready to go to the phone lines. Our first caller for this evening is Sophia listening in Ontario. Sophia, welcome to the program.

Sophia: Hi, Pastor Doug? Hi, Pastor Ross?

Pastor John: Hi.

Sophia: My question is, the Bible says that our sins will be cast to the bottom of the sea if we ask for forgiveness. On judgment day, will our sins be read out aloud for everyone to hear that are already forgiven?

Pastor Doug: No. That's a quick two-letter, one-word answer. If we have come to Christ and confess our sins and repented of our sins, then He washes away our sins. In the day of the judgment, now everybody does stand before the Lord, the Bible is pretty clear. All will stand before the judgment seat. Christ stands on our behalf, He pleads his blood, and all of our sins have been paid for. They're basically under the blood, as the song says, "Thank heavens, that when we repent of our sins and confess our sins and forsake our sins, God says, He casts them into the depths of the sea." I"ve heard a pastor say, and He sets up a no fishing sign. He doesn't want them being fished up again. A matter of fact, I think it's in Ezekiel 18 it says that if the wicked man turns from his wickedness, all of his sins will not be remembered. There's a lot of promises. That's a relief, isn't it?

Sophia: Yes, it is.

Pastor Doug: For me and you. God bless and you will enjoy our study guide on the law, we'll send you a free copy if you'd like Sophia.

Pastor John: The number to call again is 800-835-6747. You can ask for the study guide called Written in Stone. I'll be happy to send that to anybody who calls and asks. Our next caller is Dennis and he's listening in California. Dennis, welcome to the program.

Dennis: Thank you very much for being there for us.

Pastor John: Thank you.

Dennis: In light of the struggle in Israel today with the Palestinians and stuff like that, I've been wondering if when I think it was in 2 Samuel said that God didn't intend for us to have kings and yet I think Israel said, "We want to have kings like the other tribes in the land." It just seems like every sin from the apple on the tree, the multiple wives of Abraham and Jacob, every human ideas seems to sidetrack God's intentions. I'm just wondering, what did he intend for Israel to be a strong conquering dominant nation or almost an angelic example to the world?

Pastor Doug: He said that He wanted them to be, and Pastor Ross will look this up. I know where it is in 2 Peter, but it's also in I think, Leviticus, maybe even Exodus where it says He wanted to be a nation of Kings and priests. I think it's even repeated in Revelation that they will live and reign with Christ. He didn't want them to have a single king over them but the Lord said I am their King. I'm sure every tribe was to have leaders and judges and patriarchs but they were to be a nation of priests that were to bring the other nations to God.

They were to make atonement and intercede and lead the other nations to God. It was really during the time of Solomon, they got as close as they could get to the ideal. I know that during the time of Solomon, he, of course, was a king but when the queen of Sheba and other nations were coming to Israel to learn about their God that had blessed them so much. That was what God wanted them to do is to lead the others, to Him, to be a light on a hill, as a kingdom. He wanted the people to trust in him as King and not to look to a single man.

Dennis: Could there be an application to today?

Pastor Doug: Well, now it's the church. Peter says, we're a Royal priesthood. We're a Holy nation. We are a nation of kings and priests that the Lord says He's given us a kingdom and it tells us that we're a Holy priesthood. Now it really applies to the church, both Jew and Gentile.

Dennis: Is there any hope for what's going on over there in Israel today?

Pastor Doug: I hope so. I think in one week, Pastor Ross and I will be there and we're watching the headlines as they're lobbying missiles back and forth between Syria and Israel. We're going anyway.

Dennis: You'll be miles away from the point of Armageddon.

Pastor Doug: Well, you know what? You would be interested. I just finished a three-part series last week on Armageddon. Let me see. You can probably get that on my Facebook page. Just go to the Facebook page and scroll down a little bit. You'll see all the messages, Armageddon part one, two, and three and I talk about that. You'll enjoy that. Well, thank you. Appreciate your call. Take care, Dennis. Bye-Bye.

Pastor John: Our next caller that we have is Barbara listening in South Carolina. Barbara, welcome to the program.

Barbara: Thank you. My question is I would like to preface it with saying, I respect you both very much. I watched the processeecode.com 2012. A friend send it to me and I watched all of the videos and I decided I've got to go visit this church. I did the church, I got baptized in 2013. My husband never did join but our new year's resolution was to observe the Sabbath. Every Sabbath since January 1st, 2013. I was recently disfellowshipped from my church and we had started a new one. I was disfellowshipped because I wanted to study about the Godhead or God the Holy Spirit.

I had been exposed to the truth about the Father, the one true God, and that He has a truly Begotten Son. I watched a debate that Doug Batchelor did with a guy named Steve. I think I saw it yesterday. I would like to ask you to have a similar situation with a one true God believer and our representative will come to you, to your venue, to where you're comfortable and in a respectful way to be able to discuss this because it's a hot topic. It is a hot topic. I was disfellowshipped because I wanted to study this and it's like, there's something wrong with this picture.

Pastor Doug: Well, now, one thing you're asking about a possible debate, and that really I would answer in a different venue than our call-in program right now. Did you have a question on the subject of the Trinity and the Godhead?

Barbara: I still have several but I'll ask a different question. I'll ask a different question. We know about the book of life. I've heard about that but then what is this book? Are there three books mentioned in the Bible or are there two books? One of them, I think they brought up yesterday was the book of remembrance.

Pastor Doug: Well, and Pastor Ross might chime in. Moses talks about a book. Then there are places he says, "Lord, take my name out of your book." Singular. In Daniel, it says everyone that is found written in the book. In Revelation, it talks about the books were open. There's been much discussion about, is it one book that contains like the Bible is one book with many books in it. Some have wondered, is it-- let me just tell you what we know the Bible says He has. There is a record of all those who have witnessed for Christ talks about those who thought upon His name. There's a record of every idle word we've spoken. The Bible says all of the books are open and the dead were judged out of those things written in the book. It says we're judged according to our works. We're saved by grace but our works show if we've been saved by grace. The book or books contains at least a record of those who have accepted the plan of salvation. One is the book of life and then there is the book of deeds.

Pastor John: You have a book as Pastor Doug mentioned where Jesus said every idle word that a man speaks, he shall give an account of. There's some form of record, whether that's a book of all of the sins that are committed or words spoken foolishly. There is a book of remembrance that the Bible speaks of where David says, you saved my tears in symbolic language or poetic language. My kids keep them in your bottle or book of remembrance. It's along those lines. That talks about the sufferings that Christians go through. There is a remembrance of that and of course the book of life, as you mentioned.

Pastor Doug: The book of life is mentioned in revelation several times. I don't know if that helps a little bit. We do have a lesson. We can send you a free copy of that and it's called Facing the Judge. Maybe you'll find some more. I think that actually has some more of those references in there. We'll send you a free copy of that and thank you, Barbara. Appreciate your call. As far as the possibility of a future debate, we'd probably do that through our office if we set that up. If we do, we'll announce it, and let everyone know.

Pastor John: The verse you're referring to about a book of remembrance is Malachi 3:16. Talks about that.

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Pastor John: Our next caller that we have is Geneva listening in Broomfield, Colorado. Geneva, welcome to the program.

Geneva: Thank you. My question is, in Hebrews six, I'm going to say verse four, I think. If it is impossible for those who are enlightened and have tasted the heavenly gift and were made partakers and whenever they-- where is it? Verse six. When they fall away to renew them again and to repent and seeing that they crucified themselves the Son of God of flesh and put Him to an open shame. Well, I've been baptized a bunch of times and I hope we can't be baptized too many times. I don't know. I guess I wasn't ready until about 30 years ago but anyway [crosstalk]. I do things that I know I shouldn't but I love the Lord. That verse scares me.

Pastor Doug: Well, let's first look at the verse and find out what it doesn't mean. A lot of people read Hebrews 6:4-6 and they think it's saying that if a person sins after they know the truth, that then they are forever lost, that's like unpardonable sin. If that's true, Peter who walked with Jesus tasted of the heavenly gift, went out and performed miracles and then denied Christ, ultimately was swearing and cursing. How could he be forgiven? He was. You've got several examples in the Bible of people like David who was spirit-filled working for the Lord. God was fighting side by side with him. He killed Goliath and then he takes the guy's wife and has him killed.

You would think, well, that would mean that there's no recovery for him. This verse is not saying that when believers make a big mistake or even backslide that there's no hope. You see what I'm saying? First let's decide what it doesn't mean because otherwise when Moses lost his temper or when Moses murdered somebody, that would mean there's no more hope for him. This verse is not saying that, I think the verses using the Greek terms for their ongoing verbs.

If a person continues in known rebellion after they've received all the fullness of God. In other words, God's given them the best of His spirit and He's given them clear understanding of the truth and they've tasted the powers of the age to come. If they turn their back persistently on the best that God has to offer, He's saying what else can God do when He gives the best, and it rolls off their back?

That's why it says in verse seven, "For the earth that drinks in the rain of the water that comes upon it and bears herbs, it receives blessings but if someone is rejecting the reign of the Holy Spirit, they'll give away the Holy Spirit." If you're still sensitive to the Spirit of God, if you've made mistakes, you confess, you repent of your mistakes and God's mercy is available as long as we're willing to really repent. He is still willing to really forgive. Can you think of anybody in the Bible that asked God for mercy that didn't get mercy?

Geneva: Well, no.

Pastor Doug: He even forgave the Ninevites when He had already pronounced their judgment. When they repented, He forgave them. God is very merciful, even King Manasseh who had his own children offered to pagan gods and killed the prophet Isaiah, a terrible king. He repented, God forgave him. God is so merciful, so don't get discouraged and just know God has a better forgiver than you are a sinner.

Geneva: Okay. I normally do one question, but can you be baptized too many times?

Pastor Doug: Well, I wouldn't overdo it, but the Bible never gives a number saying once you get baptized over 70 x 7 is too many. I think baptism ought to be like marriage where you hope you only do it once, but sometimes it happens more than once. You need to take it very seriously. There may be times where divorce yourself from the Lord, you need to get remarried, but there's no prescribed number in the Bible that after 10 baptisms it doesn't count anymore. All right, well thank you very much for your questions [crosstalk]

Geneva: Fall on God's grace.

Pastor Doug: Amen. Well, He's still working on your heart, or you wouldn't have called.

Geneva: Okay, thank you so much.

Pastor Doug: Thank you. We do have a book, we'll send you a free copy of Riches of His Grace.

Pastor John: The number to call is 800-835-6747 you can ask for the book called Riches of His Grace, we'll be happy to send that to you and anybody who calls and asks.

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Pastor John: The next caller that we have is Jade, listening from Michigan. Jade, welcome to the program.

Jade: Pastor Ross, how are you?

Pastor John: We're doing well thank you, and yourself?

Jade: Doing fine. Pastor Doug?

Pastor Doug: Hi, how are you doing, Jade?

Jade: Doing good. There's a movement right now, there's no Holy Spirit or He's not God, and now I'm hearing that Jesus is not God and so I'm wondering if you could explain. Hebrews 1: 6-8,10 down through there. It sounds to me that God Himself is calling Jesus God. Can you clear that up a little bit?

Pastor Doug: Yes. Well first of all Jesus meets every definition of God. He is God the Son, He's 100%, God. The Bible says that you're not supposed to worship anybody but God, but you read here in Hebrews 1:6, God said let all the angels of God worship Him. Well, when the Apostle John tried to worship an angel, the angel says, "Don't do it. You're only supposed to worship God." Jesus when He rose from the dead, it says they worshipped Him. The Bible says that God created everything in the beginning. Well, the Bible says Jesus created everything. All things that were made were made by Him.

The Bible says there's no savior but Jehovah. Well, the Bible says Jesus is the Savior. The Bible says God and God only can forgive sin. Well, the Bible says that Jesus can forgive sin. The Bible says only God knows the thoughts of men's hearts. Well, Jesus knew what was in man. You go through all the definitions.

Jade: Great.

Pastor Doug: Go ahead, you were saying something.

Jade: That's great. Listen, the slightest thing I've heard is that if we worship Jesus then we're putting an idol before the Father, before God and we're not supposed to worship idols. Have you heard that?

Pastor Doug: No, I haven't but I'm not surprised. My question would be why would Jesus say when He rose from the dead, "All hail?" That's He's inviting them to worship and says, and they worshipped Him. Why would Jesus tell them to break the commandments? The Father is constantly trying to glorify the Son, and the Son, the Father.

Pastor John: I think the verse who you referring to there makes it quite clear where in verse eight, Paul who we believe wrote the book of Hebrews is quoting from the Old Testament, and he says but to the son He says, this is God the Father speaking to the Son. "Your throne, oh God is forever and ever." Here you have the Father referencing Christ and referring to him as God. You can't get more of a testimony than that.

Pastor Doug: Yes. If you're not going to believe the testimony of God, what higher authority do you appeal to?

Pastor John: Absolutely.

Pastor Doug: Very good. Hey, we appreciate your questions, Jade. I've just completed a new book dealing with a subject of understanding the mystery of the Trinity and not that anyone understands at all but we're going to do our best. Well, we can also send you a copy of the book right now. That's called The Trinity: Is it Biblical? where we talk about some of these issues. Appreciate your question. We're going to go back to the phones in just a moment, friends. We're going to take a drink of water, we do have some lines open, give us a call.

Speaker 1: Stay tuned. Bible Answers Live we'll return in a moment.

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Speaker 3: Journey back through time to the center of the universe. Discover how a perfect Angel transformed into Satan, the archvillain. The Birth of evil, a rebellion in heaven, a mutiny that moved to earth. Behold, the creation of a beautiful new planet, and the first humans. Witness the temptation of evil. Discovered God's amazing plan to save His children. This is a story that involves every life on earth. Every life. The cosmic conflict. If God is good, if God is all powerful, if God is love, then what went wrong?

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Speaker 3: Every 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 John Ross for more Bible Answers Live.

Pastor Doug: Welcome back listening friends, we're going to go to phones in just a moment. This is Bible Answers Live and we do international interactive Bible study. You can call in with your questions. Once again, the number to the studio with your question, 800-463-7297. My name is Doug Batchelor.

Pastor John: My name is John Ross. We're going to go to our next caller. We have Mark listening in Indianapolis. Mark, welcome to the program.

Mark: Hi, thanks for taking my call.

Pastor Doug: Thank you for your patience. Your question?

Mark: I was in an ecumenical Bible study. The conversation started basically an activist where talks about having no images in the sky, on the ground, or under the ground, I believe. I don't have the exact track in front of me. Then the conversation went on to why did God instruct the Levites to put two large cherubim on the ark of covenant? Then we began talking about the snake that Moses was told to make and then have them gaze upon it. No one really had a good answer why after the fact those were instructed to be built. Then we digressed into major scenes, which may or may not be related.

Pastor Doug: I think the key, first of all, they're quoting from the second commandment, which says, "You're not to make the likeness of anything in the heaven above the earth, beneath the water, under the earth, and bow down thyself to them and serve them." God does not have any commandment against making a facsimile of something because when you think about it, God told Solomon to make 12 oxen and put it under the lever. That was the temple that Solomon built later. God told Moses to have the women inscribe angels on the veil curtain. The priest had pomegranates on the bottom of his garment. That's an image of something. The thing was, they were not to worship those things.

Now, there is one denomination, they don't even allow photographs. If you have a photograph in your wallet of your grandkids, or your kids, that's the likeness. I suppose there are some grandparents who do worship them. The idea is, you're not to have anything to be an idol or an image of a god. That's idolatry. Now, there are a number of churches that make statues of Peter, James, John, and Mary and people pray to them or the various saints, that is forbidden. To have a picture of your son or your daughter, your wedding picture on your piano or your wall, you're not praying to it. There's nothing wrong with that.

The commandment is not just don't make them. It says, "Do not make them and," see the sentence doesn't end, "Don't make them and bow down thyself to them."

Mark: Just an issue of worship, which the issue of worship is somewhat subjective on the viewer's part? [crosstalk]

Pastor Doug: Well, it can be. If a person's kneeling before an image and burning a candle, well, that's-- I talked to my Roman Catholic friends, and they said, "We're not worshiping this statue of Mary. I said, "Look when you're kneeling before it and burning the candle when you're praying." They said, "That's just to help us visualize Mary." I said, "I'm sorry then." Even the Buddhists when they kneel before a statue of Buddha, they know that statue is not the real Buddha. I don't think the excuse works when you take it that far. We shouldn't be prostrating ourselves before these things and bringing--

You go to some countries and they bring gifts and flowers and food and set it before these statues, that's idolatry. Having a photograph, or when God said to put angels on top of the ark, that's just to create an image of what heaven is like. We're not to pray to the ark, or to any idol.

Hey, thank you very much. You would enjoy the lesson we're offering tonight, it contains the commandments. That's called Written in Stone.

Pastor John: The number to call is 800-835-6747. You can ask for the study guide called Written in Stone.

Speaker 3: Written by the hand of God and spoken with His voice, some words will never fade.

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Speaker 2: Get Pastor Doug Batchelor's 12 parts sermon series on the 10 commandments by calling 800-538-7275 or visit afbookstore.com.

Pastor John: We have David listening in Ohio. David, welcome to the program.

David: Hi. Hello, Pastor Doug. How are you today?

Pastor Doug: Good. Thanks for calling.

David: Excellent. I have a question, but I also have a request. Here in Cleveland, Ohio area, we'd like to see perhaps a little more evangelism out here. If it would be possible at some point, we'd love to see your Amazing Facts to come out here and do an evangelistic series. It's been a while. I've noticed that it really doesn't get over to the North Coast this much.

Pastor Doug: Send us an invitation. I don't think I've ever done a meeting in Ohio. I'd love to come.

David: Okay. Yes, I'd love that. I will orchestrate that if possible. My one question is in regards to the first angel's message. It starts out by saying this angel was proclaiming the everlasting gospel. I've been reading areas where it talks about preaching the gospel, and I see where Jesus preached the kingdom of the gospel. Also, Paul and Barnabas preach the kingdom of God. Then it even says in Galatians 3:8 that, "By faith, the gospel is preached to Abraham." That tells me that the same gospel has been preached from Genesis to Revelation and it's unchanging. I'm noticing in chapter 14 of Revelation 14:7, talking about, "To worship Him who made the heaven, the earth, the sea, and the springs of water." Can you elaborate on that, and how that identifies God's authority over the earth, and how it points to the fourth commandment?

Pastor Doug: Yes. For our friends, listening, we're talking about Revelation chapter 14. These are three angel messages. They go to the world immediately prior to the second coming of Jesus. It talks about preaching the everlasting gospel. In that first message, it says, "Worshiping Him that made." I think that we know much of the first world countries now, they don't believe that God made anymore. They don't believe in God as a creator. In fact, every Sabbath day when you think about it, we're remembering that God is the creator because He made all things in six days and He made one more day to remember He's a creator. That's why it says in the fourth commandment, "For in six days, the Lord made."

Every time we remember the Sabbath, we're remembering that in six days, God made the heaven, the earth, and the sea. That's the same phrase that you find here in Revelation chapter 14, "Worship Him that made the heaven, the earth, the sea, and the springs of water." We're being called back to worship God as a creator. We've got a lesson that talks about that that I think people would enjoy.

Pastor John: Our study guide called Angel Messages from Space talks about the three angels messages, just a very important study. We'll be happy to send this to anyone who calls and ask. The number is 800-835-6747. Ask for the study guide called Angel Messages from Space. If you have a Bible question, our phone line here to the studio is 800-463-7297.

We have Marcus listening from Alabama. Marcus, welcome to the program.

Marcus: Hey, thank you so much. How are you doing, Pastor?

Pastor Doug: Doing great. Thanks for calling.

Marcus: Thank you. Hey, I just had one question, I've been studying concerning the end time and this gospel when Jesus would tell them the signs that would happen before he would come.

Pastor Doug: Yes.

Marcus: I ran across something that I just need a little bit more clarification on this. I've been praying and asking for some clarification is 2 Thessalonians 2:1-4, and really pertaining to verses 3 and 4 is--

Pastor Doug: "Let no man deceive you by any means: for that day shall not come, unless there come a falling away first, and the man of sin is revealed, the son of perdition, who opposeth and exalts himself above all that is called God, or that is worshipped, so that He sits as God in the temple of God, showing Himself he is God." That the one you want?

Marcus: Right. Yes, sir. When I'm looking at that, it's actually talking about the devil himself, not necessarily a man in flesh.

Pastor Doug: Yes and no. Of course, the devil would enjoy doing that, even vicariously through any man. When you think about the beast's power in Revelation, it says, "For it is the number of a man." It's a position that is held by a man.

Now, I don't want to anger any of my orthodox or Catholic friends. The Protestants traditionally believed-- If you ask Martin Luther or John Wesley or John Calvin, they all believe this was talking about the Pope because when it says, "He sits in the temple of God, showing Himself He is God," they weren't thinking of rebuilding the Jewish temple. They were thinking that the church is the temple of God. Jesus said, "Destroy this temple made with hands, three days, I'll raise it up." He spoke of his body. Church is called the body of Christ. They said, "Here, the Pope says he's the universal father of the temple of God, the church."

The Protestant leaders always applied that verse to the position of the Pope, which was held by a man. I know that's probably you're shaking for some people listening, but it's not new, it's very old. I say that in love. That's just the fact of how the Protestants viewed that verse. The charismatics today they're thinking more of a demonic incarnation that is going to be a political religious leader of the world, so they've gotten away from the traditional Protestant view. What was your specific question on this verse?

Marcus: It was there because, well, another part of it was when it says he will be revealed that that means somebody exposes him. If it is a person in flesh.

Pastor Doug: Well, yes, when you get to Revelation, it tells us that circumstances will really force the hand of the beast so it starts out speaking like a lamb, but ends up speaking like a dragon and so it becomes obvious, what power is behind him. He starts out lamb-like, like Christ, ends up dragon-like, and so along the way he's revealed. [crosstalk] We have a lesson, I'd like to send you a lesson on it about Who is the Antichrist.

Pastor John: All you need to do is call and ask for it, we'll be happy to send it to you, Marcus, the number is 800-835-6747. You can ask for the study guy called, Who is the Antichrist? Gets right into this backstabbing of references, this verse, as well as several others that you find in the Book of Revelation. Next caller that we have is Sue also listening in Alabama. Sue welcome to the program.

Sue: Hi, how are you?

Pastor Doug: Good. Thank you for calling and waiting.

Sue: Thank you for having me. My question is I been baptized a couple of years back and I understand that you're forgiven and everything, but I was wondering how can you forgive yourself? Because there's you always bring in it. You always think about the stuff that you've done. I'm wondering how can you let go? [crosstalk]

Pastor Doug: That's a good question, I think all of us have done things where we deeply regret and we're sorry and you tell God, you're sorry. I believe, in my own case, I believe that God forgives, but whenever for whatever reason, that memory comes back, you cringe and then I remind myself, God says, if you repent and confess your sins, and this is a First John 1:9, I think, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. Claim the promise that He forgives and He cleanses from all unrighteousness, then we've got to be careful that we don't set-up our opinion as a higher tribunal than God.

In other words if God says, "Look, I've forgiven you." And you say, "Yes, but I haven't forgiven myself," and God is thinking, "Who do you think you are? Do you think your opinion is more important than my word? If I say you're forgiven, you're forgiven." Now the devil will bring to our memory our past mistakes and as Martin Luther used to say, you cannot prevent the birds from flying over your head, but do not let them make a nest in your hair. Those thoughts may come, but when they come, just reject them and say that sin is now under the blood of Jesus and then move on.

Sue: Yes, sir, okay, I'll work on it.

Pastor Doug: Well, you should pray and believe. Trust the Lord. We've got a lesson that we can give you that talks about the grace of God.

Pastor John: The book you mentioned a little earlier, Richness of His Grace is a fantastic book. The number to call is 800-835-6747. That is the resource phone line. You can ask for the book called Richness of His Grace. I'll be happy to send it to anyone who calls and asks. We have Marla who's listening in Maryland. Marla welcome to the program.

Marla: Oh, hi pastors, I just have a question. My Bible study group, we were studying-- well, we still are studying Daniel and Revelation. Those two books go together like peas and carrots. I think it was in Revelation 22 where John is shown the vision of the river, of water of life and then, so John, who was he talking to? Was that Gabriel there?

Pastor Doug: Well say he calls him the angel of the Lord, many think it was Gabriel, but I don't know that it uses Gabriel's name.

Marla: I don't think it does, so John was talking to an angel regarding the river back in Daniel 12. This is my question. It's trivial, but it just got me thinking when we were studying it in our group, Daniel 12:5 says, "Then I Daniel looked and there stood two others, one on this river bank and the other on that river bank. One said to the man clothed in linen, who was above the waters of the river, how long shall the fulfillment of these wonders be?" Daniel was shown a vision of two people over the river. I'm wondering, was being shown a vision of John talking to the angel.

Pastor Doug: All Right, that's a great question. You've got my mind spinning, but I don't think so. If you look in Daniel 10:4, it says now on the 24th day of the first month, I was by the side of the great river. That is the Tigris and I lifted up my eyes and behold, a certain man clothed in linen. Now it's very symbolic because he realized the Tigris is mentioned in Genesis. I think it's one of the rivers with the Euphrates that's mentioned. If you look at the end of Ezekiel, that's the book just before Daniel and I'm trying to get the right verse, chapter four. I think it's, is it chapter 47? Yes.

Marla: Healing waters and the trees.

Pastor Doug: Yes, you go to chapter 47. He talks about along the bank of the river. Very many trees and it's very similar where it talks about revelation and the leaves of the tree and the fruit by the river, wherever the river goes, everything lives. Daniel, Ezekiel and Revelation end with a river of life. It sounds like. Now the Tigris was thought of to be river of life, but it's not the same Tigris or Euphrates that was in the Garden of Eden.

Anyway, I don't know if I made things. I don't think that Daniel was seeing John. I think Daniel was seeing the same vision and angel that Ezekiel and that John saw, that's talking about this river of life and the end of time, but the whole vision, Daniel 10, 11, 12 is one vision and he has the vision by the Tigris river but I think that's symbolic of the river of life that you've seen in Ezekiel and Revelation.

Marla: Okay, well that explains it.

Pastor Doug: All right well, that's a try.

Marla: I appreciate it.

Pastor Doug: Hey, thank you. Great question.

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

Robert: Thank you. I was calling about the Romans 8 and it mentioned three laws, the law of the spirit, the law of sin and death and the law of God. I was just wanting to know is the law of the spirit, is that equated with the law of God or the loss and death? Is that equated with the law of gun?

Pastor Doug: Well, the word law is sometimes Paul uses the word to talk about the rule or the way or the principle by which the spirit operates and when jogged by the law of the spirit, if you are spirit-filled, you will walk in the law of the Lord because the fruits of the spirit are love, joy, peace, so forth that you find in Galatians 5:22.

Pastor John: There are several laws referenced, but I think here Paul is emphasizing the fact that you have the law written on stone and it says, that's the law of sin and death. Meaning the wages of sin is death and in our own strength, we can keep the law and that's why he says in verse two, but the law of the spirit of life in Christ, Jesus has made me free from the law of sin and death.

It is through the power of God, working within the heart of the believer that became keep the law. Verse three, for what the law could not do, because it was weak through the flesh, God sending his own son in the likeness of sinful flesh on account of sin, condemned sin in the flesh. Here's the point verse four that, the righteous requirements of the law might be fulfilled in us who do not walk according to the flesh, but according to the spirit.

Pastor Doug: Which is what I was saying, if you're filled with the spirit and you're walking according to the law of the spirit, obviously if you're spirit-filled, you will not be lying or worshiping other gods, you'll be keeping the law. You're not under the penalty of the law anymore. The curse of the law. I think that you'd really enjoy that study guide that we're offering tonight, talking about written in stone, the law of God.

Pastor John: The number to call for that is 800-835-6747. You can ask for the study guide called written in stone. It talks about this very important subject, I think even references Romans 8 in that study guide. Our next caller that we have is Alan listening in Washington, Alan welcome to the program.

Alan: Yes, I'm calling from Iowa actually, Oskaloosa, Iowa. I really appreciate it you guys, I just heard your program for the first time tonight and I wanted to make a quick comment. Your answers on forgiveness and God's grace and mercy, spot on. I really appreciate you guys. I've got a question pertaining to suicide and losing our salvation, which I don't believe that you can. I had a really good friend that loved the Lord. She served him with all her heart, but she took her life. I believe when we need the Lord, I believe maybe He would say, "I wasn't expecting you for another 30 years. Why are you here now?"

That's my question. I've studied the scriptures, I've heard what other men of God have said on the subject, and I'm hesitant to ask because I don't want a Christian to think they can just end their life and still be eternally secure, but I believe that you are. I believe we might suffer a loss of rewards.

Pastor Doug: Well, let's talk about it for just a minute. You are asking one of the tough questions. I think virtually everybody listening, if you've lived for very long you've known somebody that was a believer and for whatever reason, in a moment of agony, depression, it might have been a chemical imbalance, it could've been medication from the final stages of cancer, they did something rash and they took their life. Does that mean their entire life of loving and serving the Lord evaporates? I think we have to be very careful not to judge that because God looks on the heart. We don't know everything they were going through. We don't know what kind of pain they were enduring.

I think God is a merciful God, so we need to be careful. But at the same time, it's a double-edged sword. We mustn't, as you just mentioned, give a person the idea that they can say, "Well, when I was nine-years-old, I accepted the Lord, so I'm having a rough time now. I'm just going to check out. I'm going to kill myself and God will resurrect me because once you're saved you can't be lost." That, I think, is reckless because if the last act of your life is self-murder, and we're made in the image of God, that's serious, too.

You look at the examples in the Bible of people that committed suicide and you have, I think of three examples, Ahithophel, who betrayed David and then he went out and hung himself like Judas, who betrayed Christ. Then you got Saul, I guess there was four, Saul and his armor-bearer, that fell on their swords. In all those cases, these characters were very likely not saved. Saul had grieved away the Holy Spirit. Judas said Satan entered him. The only one you can look at is maybe Samson, in a sense, is a suicide in that he probably knew they were about to kill him and he said, "Lord, let me die with the Philistines," and he stretched out his arms like Jesus and he laid down his life to defeat the enemies of God. Samson will be in heaven. You can read in Hebrews 11.

That's why I say we have to be very careful. Suicide is a very bad idea. People believe that life is sacred and people think that if I end my life, I'm somehow going to usher myself into a better existence. I think in most cases, they're going to be in for a big surprise, but I believe there's exceptions, so we got to be careful. Difficult question. I hope I didn't give too much of a rambling answer.

Alan: No, you did not. Yes, the secret things are of the Lord. Deuteronomy says that and I believe that. His ways and thoughts are higher than ours. I was hesitant to ask the question because I've been studying the scriptures about that. It does definitely show a lack of trust in the Lord and His will for our lives. I just was interested. I really enjoy your program and-

Pastor Doug: We hope it's habit-forming.

Alan: -[crosstalk] experience is just spot-on.

Pastor Doug: Call us again. Thank you very much.

Pastor John: The next caller that we have, we just got a few moments left, but we got Noah listening in Illinois. Noah, we have just a couple of minutes here before the end of the program.

Noah: Hey, Doug. My question is most my family are not Christians, right?

Pastor Doug: Yes.

Noah: Is there anyone in the Bible that is going through the same thing as I am?

Pastor Doug: Yes, where you're a believer and most of your family is not. Joseph, for a while there, had 11 brothers, or 10 brothers that sold him into slavery and lied about it. He felt pretty forsaken, even though they went to church, so to speak, they claimed to believe in God. They sure weren't following God. I think there are some others in the Bible that you can point to. When the Gospel started to go out among the Gentiles, you would have one Gentile in the family that would convert. Many others then were not believers and they had to try and be witnesses.

That's why it says in first Peter that if a woman is married to an unbeliever, by her behavior, she reaches her husband. Friends, you can hear the music. It's kind of chasing us off the precipice. We'd love to hear from you again next week. You can support this ministry. Simply go to amazingfacts.org and click donate. Is that blunt enough? We'd love to have your help to stay on the air. God bless friends.

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