Date: 11/21/2004 
Everyone knows that the ancient Egyptians possessed great scientific and engineering knowledge. But, for more than fifteen hundred years the ...
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Hello friends this is Doug Batchelor. How about an amazing fact? Everyone knows that the ancient Egyptians possessed great scientific and engineering knowledge. But, for more than fifteen hundred years the history of this great civilization had remained a baffling secret. Even though the history was everywhere it remained locked up in a mysterious writing called hieroglyphics. The Egyptians had used hieroglyphics for nearly three thousand five hundred years. But, no one could decipher the meaning of the strange pictures and writing that is used in Egypt today. The Arabs who live in Egypt today are not the same race that built the pyramids. So even they had no idea how to read the odd writings. Then in 1799 while extending a fortress near Rosetta, a small city near Alexandria Egypt, a French Officer found a block of black basalt stone. It measured three feet nine inches long; two feet four inches wide and eleven inches thick. On it was etched a decree written in there distinct bands of language; Egyptian hieroglyphics, Egyptian demonic and Greek.

Scholars quickly realized that the same message was written in these three languages. After years of careful examination and study finally in 1824 a brilliant young scholar and linguist named Frances Champollion was able to decipher the hieroglyphics by comparing the ancient text on the Rosetta stone. Understanding the hieroglyphics unlocked the mysteries of the ancient Egypt.

You know friends the Bible is often compared to a rock that unlocks the plan of salvation. Stay with us friends and we will learn more as “Amazing Facts” brings you this edition of “Bible Answers Live”.


Pastor Doug: Welcome friends to a fresh edition of “Bible Answers Live”. My name is Doug Batchelor and I am very thankful that you have chosen to join us for this next hour where we are going to take a safari in the Scriptures. This is a live, interactive program and you can participate by picking up your phone and calling the toll free number. Right now is a good time to call because we still have a few lines open and that number is 1-800-GOD-SAYS or 1-800-463-7297. And if you will call now there is a good chance we will be able to get you the program. This evening Pastor Dick has the night off so I am going to be flying here in the studio by myself with my friends across the glass helping me. And so we will all pray together as we go which is what we are going to do right now. Father in heaven we thank you so much for his opportunity we have to make new friends and to better understand what the Bible says. Lord we ask that the Holy Spirit will take control of every aspect of this program and help us to better know what Jesus is saying to us and give us ears to hear what the Spirit says. Bless us now and be with us for we pray in Christ’s name. Amen.

Well once again friends if you have a Bible question you can pick up and make a toll free call in North America. 1-800-GOD-SAYS or 1-800-463-7297 and we will be talking about Bibl questions. There are programs that talk about romance and finance and all those others, but this one is dedicated to better understanding the word of God.

As our custom is we like to start with a few questions that people emailed to us because we get emails from all over the world and not everybody from around the world always call I so we. The question is I know the Bible says I should forgive others, but does that mean that I need to let those people back into my life? Perhaps they deeply hurt me.

Pastor Doug: No you don’t necessarily need to let them back in your life. Forgiveness does not mean that you have to be exposing yourself to unnecessary harm. Someone may steal from you and you may have an employee that chooses to steal from you and you can forgive them and choose not to prosecute for whatever reason, but that doesn’t mean you need to hire them again. There are people you can discover by their behavior are untrustworthy. And you may forgive them, but you don’t need to confide your secrets with them anymore. And so forgiving a person doesn’t mean that you need to be reckless about using judgment in regard to how they treat you and yourself how much you invest in them. Forgiveness means you are releasing them and that you are releasing yourself from the burden of bitterness and anger, but you are choosing not to prosecute them with your heart and mind and spirit, but let them go and that doesn’t mean you have to let them back in your life.

Pastor Doug: There is another question and someone is wondering about marriage. If Christian man and woman get married by the Justice of the Peace or a civil officer is that marriage valid in the eyes of God? And I am summarizing it for a lengthier question. Well yes it is because the Bible tells us to obey the laws of the land and marriage is largely something that is to be the marriage ceremony is to be something that is recognized by the culture. Marriage is in the culture where other people identify that you are married. And so a civil ceremony that is legal according to the civil laws of the land would also be legal in the eyes of God. But, you would automatically want to ask why not a Christian man would or a woman want to have their marriage validated in the presence of God and performed in the church? So I hope that helps a little bit. You know it just occurred to me without Pastor Dick here I just stumble along the way.

In our “Amazing Facts” we just opened with we talked about Hieroglyphics and better understanding the word of God. Of course Jesus says in Matthew 24 whoever hears these words of mine and does them is like a wise man who builds his house upon a rock. And the word of God is compared to a rock and Jesus is the word and He is also called the Rock of Ages. He is the stone and His word upon which we build our house and upon which the church is established. And we have a new book that we will send to anybody who would like to request it for free. Maybe you have wondered about the two witnesses in Revelation? Some have wondered is this Moses and Elijah or is it the word of God from the Old Testament; who are the two witnesses in Revelation Chapter 11 and we have a book called “The Two Witnesses” and it deals with this passage in Revelation and also the Mount of Transfiguration and that vision and that experience that the disciples had with Moses and Elijah.

If you would like a copy of the book “The Two Witnesses” all you have to do is call the resource line at 1-800-835-6747. Now that is a different number than the studio and if you are interested in the book and keep your pencil in hand call 1-800-835-6747 and we will send that out tonight. Tell them you are listening to “Amazing Facts” and you want the offer “The Two Witnesses”. I think that having done that that we are ready to go to the phones. So why don’t we go ahead and begin. We will start by okay I am going to talk to Trevor who is calling from Eagle Point, Oregon. You are on the air Trevor. Welcome to the program Trevor.

Trevor: Hi.

Pastor Doug: Hi thanks for the call.

Trevor: My question is according to the Scriptures is it pagan to have a painting or image of Jesus in the sanctuary and how does it relate to Exodus 20: 4?

Pastor Doug: Okay in the Ten Commandments in Exodus 20: 4 one of the commandments is not just the making of an image, but it is inclusive of making an image and bowing down to it. Now when you read the commandment it says thou shall not make unto thee any image of the likeness of anything in the heaven above or the earth beneath or the waters under the earth. And thou shall not bow down thyself and serve them. First thing we need to ask Trevor is God forbidding us from making a kind of a likeness of anything in the world? For instance a photograph in a wallet is an image. It is a likeness and a reproduction. You know if we were to put a painting of a flower on the wall. Any of those things could be seen as an image or reproduction. God obviously was not forbidding any reproduction or even in a church for that matter because when He told the Israelites to build the temple He told them to put bells and pomegranates and calves were underneath the altar in Solomon’ temple. Angels were engrave din the wall in the Holy of Holies. The command was don’t make them and bow down to them. Of course God told Moses to make a serpent and put it on a pole as a symbol of something. Some people pray to statues or paintings as though they are God or something as if these inanimate pieces of canvas or marble have power. So does that help answer what you are asking?

Trevor: Yes it does. Thank you.

Pastor Doug: Alright thank you very much good question. We are talking next to Isaac who is calling from Rosslyn, Maine.

Isaac: No Massachusetts.

Pastor Doug: Massachusetts I am sorry and your question?

Isaac: My question is what does the Bible say about suicide?

Pastor Doug: The Bible does not explicitly talk about physically killing yourself. It does say thou shall not kill and that of course when a person commits suicide that is self murder and they are killing is what it is. So in that sense it is forbidden and the examples of suicide we have in the Bible; I can think of at least three. And all of them were lost as far as we know.

You have Judas of course who hung himself after betraying Christ. He probably grieved away the Holy Spirit. King Saul likewise grieved away the Spirit. The Bible is very clear and he fell on his sword. Of course King Bailiwick he had asked somebody else to thrust him through. Which is sort of suicide it is assisted suicide you might say. And then you have Ahihophel who betrayed David and just killed himself like Judas did. They are not a very good record. The ones who commit suicide in the Bible it seems they died in a lost, hope less condition. So it is something the Bible forbids some people gets very discouraged and contemplates or commits suicide because they are discouraged and they think it will relieve them from physical or emotional suffering. But, in reality suicide does not usher us into a better existence. For a person who commits suicide if they die sin a lost condition their next conscious thought is the resurrection of the lost. So how can that be an improvement? Talk about misery and depression. Do you know what I Am saying?

Isaac: Yes.

Pastor Doug: So any young people who are contemplating that and I hope you are not contemplating it.

Isaac: Oh no.

Pastor Doug: But, that’s the best answer.

Isaac: Okay well real quick because there is a verse in Scripture that talks about Joshua asking God to take his life. I am not sure what verse because I don’t have it with me.

Pastor Doug: Well it does talk in the Bible where Job asks God to take him. Elijah got discouraged and said Lord take my life I am not better than my fathers. That is a little different than killing yourself and we have all felt like dying before, but going though with the act is a completely different thing. But, you are right and I am sure Jesus when He was on the cross did not want to live separate from God. Do you know what I am saying?

Isaac: Umm-hmm.

Pastor Doug: So it isn’t necessarily a sin to get discouraged like—like that—I won’t even go that far like it may be a sin, but I am not saying that Jesus sinned. I am saying that when Elijah got discouraged and wanted to die and Job. But, committing the act and thinking it is not the same thing.

Isaac: Yes that was what I wondered.

Pastor Doug: Because they were asking God to take their life because God gives life.

Isaac: That is true; that’s true. Thank you so much.

Pastor Doug: Alright thanks for your question.

Isaac: Have a good night.

Pastor Doug: God bless you. Thank you. Next we are going to talk to let’s see here. We are talking to David calling from Brooklyn, New York listening on WMCA. Welcome David. Daniel I am sorry not David.

Daniel: Hello.

Pastor Doug: Hi Daniel you are on the air.

Daniel: Hello. Hello Pastor Doug I’m asking my question in regard to the 4th commandment.

Pastor Doug: Okay.

Daniel: I came to the knowledge of the Sabbath truth this year and I’ve been trying my best. I have been trying my best to keep it through God’s grace. But, something came up between me and my spouse where the question came up whether or not being intimate with each other would be breaking the Sabbath 4th commandment. If we did it on the Sabbath because we are not keeping it holy or I just wondered about this?

Pastor Doug: Good question.

Daniel: I just wanted to call and ask that.

Pastor Doug: That is a good question. First of all there are times when Paul says in 1 Corinthians 7 a husband and wife might choose to fast and pray and abstain from marriage relations for a set period of time. Now notice what they are doing. They are fasting which means they are not eating. Right?

Daniel: Umm-hmm.

Pastor Doug: And they are praying and they are abstaining from sexual intimacy. We always try and find a delicate way to say that on the radio, but that is what it amounts to. Is there anything wrong with eating on the Sabbath day?

Daniel: No.

Pastor Doug: Well let me answer your question. God told the children of Israel to gather twice as much food on Friday when they went through the wilderness so they would have food to eat on the Sabbath day. So the idea that there is something wrong with sex in a marriage is a fallacy. It was part of God’s original plan before there was even sin the world and isn’t that right?

Daniel: Yes.

Pastor Doug: Now when God made Adam and Eve what day of the week did He make them?

Daniel: On the sixth day.

Pastor Doug: Do you think the day after god makes Adam and Eve and they are exactly following the creation they call their honeymoon—I mean that is what we would call it you know—for them to get married on the sixth day and for God to say now don’t touch her because that is not appropriate on the Sabbath is unholy. If it was unholy that would be true, but Paul says the marriage bed is undefiled. And that is in Hebrews I believe Chapter 13. So basically it is just a question of whether people believe that when there is intimacy in marriage that there is something unholy about it. We have been trained to believe that because it has so often been dealt with and treated that way, but in a marriage it is sanctified and so if a husband and wife agree and say look we are going to agree that this Sabbath we are going to fast and the Paul says, but let them come back together again so that they are not tempted by their lack of self-control. I am paraphrasing what you will find in 1 Corinthians 7. Does that answer your question? Now I am saying this by permission not by commandment if you know a couple is under conviction about this I have no burden to change their mind. But, I don’t find anywhere in the Bible where it is taught as a prohibition.

The Bible says don’t work on the Sabbath day. The Bible talks about not buying and selling. It talks about not cooking. But, it never makes any explicit command regarding sex.

Daniel: Okay then I shouldn’t feel guilty then because I have been married for six months and we have avoided having intimate relations on the Sabbath until last week and I felt guilty then.

Pastor Doug: Well here is the question. I am going to put a question back on you. Now God designed us to eat food correct?

Daniel: Yes.

Pastor Doug: It is a natural bodily thing wired into us. If there is no sin in satisfying that need on the Sabbath day then if God makes intimacy part of marriage and if it is declared to be holy then I don’t find there is Biblical support to say we should abstain from it unless there is an agreement and you say we agree we are going to do it this way.

Daniel: Okay it is basically up to us as to how our opinion of that or not?

Pastor Doug: Yes there is nothing in the Bible that forbids that any more than it forbids us to eat on the Sabbath day. So now the Bible does have restrictions about intimacy during the monthly cycle.

Daniel: Oh okay.

Pastor Doug: And that‘s the health issue, but is separate of what we would call completely distinct and separate from the Sabbath and marriage.

Daniel: Well I guess that is why they call it Holy Matrimony so we can feel free to be…

Pastor Doug: Yes Hebrews Chapter 13 the marriage bed is undefiled and is holy. Okay?

Daniel: Well thank you Pastor Doug.

Pastor Doug: Alright God bless good question. Let’s see now we are going to talk to Robert who is calling from Valley Stream, New York listening on WMCA in New York. Robert welcome to the program.

Robert: Good evening Pastor Doug. How are you?

Pastor Doug: Hi. I am doing well how are you?

Robert: I am doing well and thanks for the card.

Pastor Doug: Well I am glad you enjoyed it.

Robert: Okay well this is my question from the office of a Deacon. In 1 Timothy they are mentioning things to us about the office of a Deacon, but it seems to me that only a married person can be a Deacon. Now my question is can a single Christian man or a woman be a Deacon and can they also be ordained?

Pastor Doug: Alright you have good questions and you’ll find most of the information about Deacons in 1 Timothy Chapter 3: 7 and these were to be th people in the church—well first of all a Deacon is always a man just like a father is always a man.

Robert: Right.

Pastor Doug: Children never call their mothers’ father or their fathers’ mother. A Deaconess will be a woman. And the word Deacon means they are servants. So they are exclusive to a man. They are leading servants in the church.

Robert: Right.

Pastor Doug: I mean you look at the first Deacon and it was a pretty high caliber one of them Philip became an evangelist.

Robert: A Deacon, too.

Pastor Doug: Because he was the first martyr and they were both preachers. Now it talks about them having being the husband of one wife. That doesn’t necessarily mean they have to be married because by that—and that is in 1 Timothy 2: 2 & 3, but by that definition Paul would not qualify as an elder or a Deacon isn’t that right?

Robert: He wasn’t married so okay that is true.

Pastor Doug: So it is just saying they practiced a lot of polygamy back then and it was simply saying that part of the Christian faith is monogamy. One husband and one wife…

Robert: Right

Pastor Doug: … and according to that-–it is just saying they should not have more than one wife. That is what Paul was saying.

Robert: Right. Okay.

Pastor Doug: And of course they are to be people who are committed and by their example both in the home and the church that they have lives that are above reproach.

Robert: Okay.

Pastor Doug: So read 1Timothy 3: verse 2 through 13. And that will give you some good—it is a very high standard—some good description of what the ideal qualifications is.

Robert: But, are you saying they don’t have to be married?

Pastor Doug: Yes.

Robert: Okay.

Pastor Doug: I’m saying I don’t know why not. You know Paul sounds like he laid hands on Timothy who he is writing this latter to and they never mention Timothy’s wife. Paul said let no man despise your youth it sounds like he was a young, single, whipper snapper.


Pastor Doug: I don’t think there is anything in the Bible preventing a person from being ordained without being married. Once again Paul had someone lay hands on him. Ananias laid hands on him on Paul and ordained him as a preacher and he was single and that is Chapter 9 of Acts. Alright?

Robert: Alright. Thank you very much it helps me very much because they have asked me to serve for next year so.

Pastor Doug: Well bless your heart. You pray about it and if you feel that God is opening that door then walk through it.

Robert: Thank you very much and I pray God to bless you on this program.

Pastor Doug: Thank you and God bless you. Moving on now to talk with Aaron calling from Brooklyn, New York also listening on WMCA and welcome Aaron you are on the air.

Aaron: Okay hello very good how are you doing?

Pastor Doug: Alright.

Aaron: My question involves some stuff because I am a Christian and I am very interested in studying the science and the engineering of the ancient Egyptians. But, the problem is that many of the books written on this topic are written by men who are intelligent, but they include their own New Age philosophies in their pages. So my question is how I separate the interesting science and the engineering aspects of these topics from the unbiblical philosophies that a lot of the authors hold?

Pastor Doug: You ask the Holy Spirit to give you the gift of eating watermelon.


Pastor Doug: What I mean by that is you have probably eaten watermelon before and you eat the melon and spit out the seeds. You not only need that gift when you are studying science and you are in an environment where they have evolutionary New Age views.

Aaron: Right.

Pastor Doug: Any Christian just living in the world today needs to know how to as the Bible says. Hold fast to that which is good. Try to be serious and you need to be able to have the gift of discernment. And so when you hear the scholars and I just read through a book last week. It was a book on the origin of the Bible. And I learned a lot of things because the author of the book he gave a lot of excellent information and then at the end of the book he made it sound like the books of Moses were not actually written by Moses. So I thought eh; he is way off on that, but just he was informing me on history in other areas so I just held fast to the good and the other part of the book I wish I could have torn that part of the book if the rest of the book was not good for me. But, you hang on to what good and someone uses to say you eat the chicken and you spit out the bones, but I am a vegetarian so I say you eat the melon and spit out the seeds.

Aaron: well thank you that answers my question perfectly.


Pastor Doug: Alright well thank you that was an easy answer.

Aaron: Okay God bless you. Bye-bye.

Pastor Doug: And God bless you and that will open up another line so if you have question call 1-800-GOD-SAYS and for the numerical ones that want to call that is 1-800-463-7297. Now we are going to go talk to David calling from Victorville, California. Welcome David you are on the air.

David: Hello Pastor Doug how are you?

Pastor Doug: Good. Thanks for calling.

David: I am calling you from snowy Victorville, California.

Pastor Doug: Is it really snowing there now?

David: It has been snowing all day. I have lived here for almost twenty years and it is the first time I can remember that it actually snowed all day.

Pastor Doug: Well you know I have preached in the prisons down there a couple of times.

David: Well God bless you. God bless you that is a wonderful thing.

Pastor Doug: And your question?

David: Real quick I wanted to know about Ezekiel 13: 18 through Ezekiel 13: 20 where it basically talks about teaching the souls to fly and it talks about the pillows and I wanted to get a little bit of clarification on that and see if that was prohibition about teaching about the rapture specifically?

Pastor Doug: Well this is going to be hard, but we are going to break in about 3 minutes—I‘ll take a stab at it. Let me read this real quick. Ezekiel 13: 18 “And say, Thus saith the Lord God; Woe to the women that sew pillows to all armholes, and make kerchiefs upon the head of every stature to hunt souls! Will ye hunt the souls of my people, and will ye save the souls alive that come unto you? 19And will ye pollute me among my people for handfuls of barley and for pieces of bread, to slay the souls that should not die, and to save the souls alive that should not live, by your lying to my people that hear your lies?” I am just quickly going to summarize this; do you know how we have people that do fortune telling?

David: Correct.

Pastor Doug: They had people they were women that went through these rituals with pagan gods that would foretell the future with these ceremonies and claiming at times to communicate with the dead. Talking about making the souls fly has nothing to do with the rapture.

David: Okay.

Pastor Doug: And if you know like when people who are having a seuence and say that souls were flying around the room or spirits?

David: Go ahead.

Pastor Doug: It’s in this context and also I understand from the commentaries that it was dealing with the prostitution and the pillows that they had on their bed. So I have heard a couple of things about this. They had some religions in Bible times where prostitution was connected with the worship of Astaire and other pagan gods. They were called the temple prostitutes. And so this all seems to be something like your soothe saying prostitutes that work for these pagan gods. That would sort of sum it up in a sentence or two.

David: Okay that’s because Satan is a big part of that temple of Astaire. Is that correct? One of the reasons I ask is I go t a church and I am not going to name the denomination, but they teach in the secret rapture and I have come to the conclusion after reading some of your materials that it is something I do not believe in. The secret rapture I don’t believe in.

Pastor Doug: Yes. Did you read the book on that called “Anything But Secret”?

David: That is correct and I had.

Pastor Doug: By the way anyone who would like a copy of that just call our number.

David: It was very faith oriented and actually on thinking about it and reading what you wrote in--that book it I guess I might have—real quick my second question. Ami stuck going to this church or am I stuck trying to get them to change their way in this teaching?

Pastor Doug: Well sometimes you are trying to turn around a battleship and you might be better off going with people who are going in the same direction. Jesus said that if two walk together they need to be agreed. Obviously we are taking a break right now David and I can’t control that I apologize.

David: That is alright. God bless you.

Pastor Doug: And for our friends we are just taking a break with some important announcements. And if you have questions you can also email them from our website. “Amazing Facts dot org” or “dot com” will get you there. Also for those who want to get into more thorough Bible study you can go to our “Bible Universe” website and go through the Storicals of prophecy and you will get your degree as an apostle of prophecy. We’ll be right back.


Pastor Doug: Welcome back friends and if you just tuned in this is “Bible Answers Live” and you have found your way to a live, interactive Bible study. If you would like to call in with a Bible question in North America it is a toll free call. It’s 1-800-GOD-SAYS that’s 1-800-463-7297 and keep a pencil handy because we give out another number where you can call for the free resources. We have a lot of them and we have a book tonight that is brand new off the press and the ink is just dry. And it is dealing with the two witnesses. It is about the Mount of Transfiguration where both Moses and Elijah appeared to Jesus on that mountain and what does that mean and it ties into Revelation Chapter 11. So if you would like a free copy of “The Two Witnesses” call the resource number and that number is 1-800-835-6747.

Pastor Doug: Now we are ready to go back to the phones and talk to Barry who has been waiting patiently. He is calling from Fresno, California and listening on KARM welcome Barry.

Barry: Hello Pastor and thanks for taking my call.

Pastor Doug: Yes, sir.

Barry: My question is in regards to Acts Chapter 15: 19 & 20 and the Scriptures in there where the apostles are telling the Gentiles to abstain from certain things including sexual immorality and more specific blood. My question is how does this relate with blood transfusions? I have had people who come to my door that interpret in that way and I am not sure what to say.

Pastor Doug: Well first of all the prohibition against eating blood goes all the way back to Genesis and some people thought his was just a Jewish law. But, it is obviously not a Jewish law because back in Genesis when it is mentioned and back in the days of Noah he was not Jewish. Of course it is mentioned all the way through the Jewish dispensation, but it was mentioned for the Gentiles very clearly. So a matter of fact it is also repeated again in Acts Chapter 20. But, the difference is on the question of the prohibition of eating or drinking blood. Is that the same thing as a person getting a blood transfusion and I would say very definitely no. For one thing when you eat something it is going through your digestive system and it is assimilate differently. The danger of eating blood there is both a physical danger as well as a symbolic danger. It is completely different and typically people don’t drink human blood it is just animal blood. Then a person getting a blood transfusion from person to person of the same blood type is therefore the purpose of saving their life. Obviously if there is a health issue here it is healthier to get a blood transfusion and live than to not get one because of a religious misinterpretation and die. Now there is no verse in the Bible or virtue in that. So that would be my answer is I think it is a misapplication of the principle. Eating blood is not the same thing as a blood transfusion.

Barry: Well thank you very much for your time.

Pastor Doug: Alright well thank you very much good question. Who is next let me see here. It is time to talk with Steven who has been waiting on line 4 calling from St. Helens, Oregon and welcome Steven you are on the air.

Steven: Hi Pastor Doug how are you doing?

Pastor Doug: Good.

Steven: I wanted to thank you for your Bible series it is wonderful and I am just starting to watch the tapes and I am just so thankful; for your honesty I that.

Pastor Doug: Well praise the Lord. Yes we just came back from Chattanooga, Tennessee where we did a revival on two networks, 3ABN and the Hope Channel and it was a real thrill to be there. Yes I don’t get the network so I had a friend to tape them for me. Like I say I am just going through them now and they are just beautiful. So I really appreciate it.

Pastor Doug: Hey Steven do you mind? I wanted to say any of our friends who wanted to see the revival meetings we just conducted they have been very popular; just go to “04Revival dot org” and you can listen to them online on video or audio and that is 0 like the number “zero four revival dot org”. Thanks you for liking it.

Steven: Amen.

Pastor Doug: I had forgotten them Steven.

Steven: And I highly recommend them.

Pastor Doug: I appreciate that and I will pay you later.


Steven: Hey my question tonight since it is getting close to the season is on Jeremiah Chapter 10: 1-5.

Pastor Doug: The Christmas tree. Alright let me read to start I am actually going to read verse 3 “For the customs of the people are of man for one cuts down a tree out of the forest which is the hands of the hands of the workman when he uses the ax and they deck it with silver and gold and they fasten it with nails and with hammers that it move not. They are upright like a palm tree, but they speak not and needs be born for they cannot go and be not afraid of them for they cannot do evil and also it is not I them to do good.” Some people have seen this and think well this is a very interesting parallel and they cut a tree down and they deck it with silver and gold and fasten it with nails and people have images of getting an evergreen out of the forest. Then putting a stand on it and hanging it with gold and silver balls and putting it in their house. You know on first blush it almost looks like that and I get this question and as a matter of fact I had it two weeks ago. I get this question every year and it really is talking about idolatry. Now let em paint the picture of what happened. When they made idols in Bible times they were not pure gold or silver. They usually would have a wood base and then plate them with gold or silver. They would go to the forest and they would cut down a tree. They would build a pedestal. They would beat gold and silver on it and it usually looked like some person or some deity. And they would carry it around and pray to it and worship it. One clue here is it says it must be needs born. You’ve probably seen in some countries they carry statues of Mary down the street once a year. Right?

Steven: Right.

Pastor Doug: It wasn’t dealing with Christmas trees; it was dealing with idolatry. And they lavish it with gold and silver and say look if it was a god it could walk. You wouldn’t have to carry it around. It has to be propped up with a pedestal or it falls over. Do you see what I am saying?

Steven: Yes.

Pastor Doug: And a Christmas tree—some people may make idols of their Christmas tree—so it would not be Biblically honest for me to tell you yes this is a Christmas tree because I don’t like Christmas trees, but this is not what it is talking about.

Steven: Okay.

Pastor Doug: And by the way my personal peeve about Christmas trees is that they just cut don so many nice trees every year just to throw them away a few weeks later. I told my wife a couple of years ago well I don’t want to get a Christmas tree and she thought well let’s just do something with the family and it is a good season. So what I did is I decorated a step ladder and put it up in the house sort of in protest. But, we all liked it.


Steven: Well myself I have kind of problems with Christmas, but I won’t go into that.

Pastor Doug: Well everyone knows—I think most people know that the date for Christmas is very much has a pagan origin.

Steven: Yes.

Pastor Doug: But, you have to ask yourself if as a Christian we are simply remembering the birth of Christ and that is the time of year the when the whole world is doing it, you know, Paul said I become all things to all men; so that I might lead some to Christ. Then I don’t see any virtue in being Ebenezer Scrooge and just slamming the door when people come along singing Christmas carols. So you need wisdom.

Steven: Yes and you know, I would never do anything like that, no.

Pastor Doug: I have had people do it. But, that is why I went with our church group singing Christmas carols once twenty years ago and some people said we don’t believe in Christmas and they slammed the door in our face. And I thought well I hope I don’t believe like you.

Steven: Anyway thanks for your time and God bless you. I just wanted to mention I read your book—wait a minute I just lost the title to it—the chains one—broken chains. Yes and that was wonderful and just actually gave it to a friend of mine. He just went into a drug treatment center.

Pastor Doug: Oh perfect for that.

Steven: Yes and she really appreciated it.

Pastor Doug: Well thank you very much and thanks for the plug.

Steven: Yes. God bless.

Pastor Doug: And God bless you. Bye-bye.

Steven: Bye.

Pastor Doug: We’re going to talk to Michael in East Orange, New Jersey. And your question Michael?

Michael: Yes how are you doing?

Pastor Doug: Good and you’ve been waiting awhile what is on your mind?

Michael: I am a born again Christian, but I was wondering when you commit suicide do you go to heaven or hell? Is it unclean; I mean there are different definitions everywhere?

Pastor Doug: Well first of all a born again Christian doesn’t commit suicide and let me explain why. A born again Christian commits suicide when they are born again. In other words when you follow Jesus and you really take up your cross we are crucified with Christ. When you take up your cross we are crucified with Christ. So a born again Christian has already committed suicide spiritually so I don’t think they contemplate physical suicide because they are crucified with Christ and they don’t—they are living a new life now they are born again. Do you see what I mean? It’s a paradox. It’s a contradiction, but you are asking another question which is hidden in your question and it’s can a person who commits suicide be saved? My answer would be generally speaking I would not hold out a lot of hope. But, there probably are exceptions. There are some people who I would imagine do it because they are so overcome with physical pain from maybe a lingering disease that they are not thinking straight or maybe because of some chemical problem and depression. I know some Christians and they had an accident and the pain and depression was so unbearable that they took their lives and we are inclined to think that perhaps God will judge them based on who they were before their mental state was affected. But, for a born again Christian to say well I have accepted Jesus so I am going to kill myself and go to heaven; no that is a very dangerous assumption. Does that help you a little bit Michael to answer the question?

Michael: Yes. Somewhat, yes.

Pastor Doug: Okay well I hope that helps you a little and I hope you are not considering that and we’ll be praying for you. We need to talk with Raymond who has been waiting from Patterson, New Jersey on WMCA. Hello Raymond you are o the air.

Raymond: Yes Pastor Doug how are you doing?

Pastor Doug: Get close to your phone I can barely hear you.

Raymond: Yes can you hear me now?

Pastor Doug: That’s better.

Raymond: Okay my verse I want a comment with is in John Chapter 20: 17. When Jesus is here after the resurrection and Jesus said for somebody not to touch Him and He said touch me not for I have not ascended to my Father, but go and tell my brethren and He made mention of God as being His Father. And is Jesus a sort of no longer a deity or is Christianity not a holy religion? Being that Jesus and not only His Father is God?

Pastor Doug: Not only is He here, but keep in mind when Jesus hung on the cross He said My God My God and then He said Father into your hands I commit my spirit. So He even said the same thing on the cross.

Raymond: Right so Jesus is not denying Hid deity because I believe He is the Deity even as Christ.

Pastor Doug: No now keep in mind that Christ was our example ad a lot of things that Jesus did He did not do to deny His deity, but to be our example. For instance Christ was baptized Raymond. He wasn’t baptized to wash away His sin, but as an example for us. Do you see what I am saying?

Raymond: Yes.

Pastor Doug: And He said when you pray; pray in this manner, Our Father and so the fact that He called God the Father doesn’t take away from His deity all through the Bible.

Raymond: He is regarded as God.

Pastor Doug: But, when Christ was on earth it says that in Colossians that—oh I am sorry this is in Philippians Chapter. He did not count Himself to be God. In other words Christ laid aside His divinity and he related to the Father on earth the way we do as an example for us.

Raymond: Right.

Pastor Doug: But, when you look at all of the other characteristics of Christ He takes all the attributes of God. and He also when He rose from the dead He came back after Mary he was in heaven and His sacrifice was accepted and He came back down to earth and He told the disciples all hail in other words; worship. And then they worshipped Him. Well the Bible commanded worship God only. We were not even to worship angels.

Raymond: Right. Exactly.

Pastor Doug: So there is not a question about who He is. And while He was here He was relating to the Father the way we should.

Raymond: And Christianity is still considered a modernistic religion? Even though that Jesus God and the Father are under more than one God there?

Pastor Doug: Yes and part of the reason for that is in understanding the word one. A polytheistic religion is where they have got more than one god like their god of the bush and the god of the river and god of the sky and god of the plants. Our God is not different Gods they are one. But, one is like in Hebrews where a husband and wife get married and they become one.

Raymond: Right.

Pastor Doug: God the Father, the Son and the Spirit are one. So it is a monotheistic religion one God comprised of three persons. And I know that sounds like a contradiction.

Raymond: I know it caused me enough with the singular persons in three persons. It just seems difficult to grasp, but.

Pastor Doug: Well it is different. Well it is difficult because God is God. You know if you would like Raymond I have written a book a little more than a year ago that I will send you for free and it is simply called the “Trinity”. Would you like a copy of that?

Raymond: Sure.

Pastor Doug: Okay well here is the phone number. It’s 1-800-835-6747 and ask for the free book “The Trinity” that we offered. And I appreciate your patience. Alright let’s talk now to Danny who is listening from Mt. Olive, Mississippi on WSJC. Are you there Danny?

Danny: Yes sir.

Pastor Doug: Okay welcome to the program. Hi I am here. Are you there?

Danny: I would like to know what the Bible says about a woman preventing pregnancy such as a woman tying her tubes or birth control pills.

Pastor Doug: I know what you mean prevention of conception.

Danny: Yes sir.

Pastor Doug: Alright. Good question and we have a couple of questions that are on the marriage level tonight. I’ll do my best and first of all there is no explicit Scripture that uses the term birth control because well they just didn’t practice it that way back then. The only birth control they practiced in Bible times was one example in Genesis where one of the sons of Judah was slain, but it really didn’t have anything to do with birth control; it had to do with not wanting to raise up seed to his sister-in-law. But, the other times in the Bible God says be fruitful and multiply and fill the earth. The word replenish is the same word as fill. Well the earth is pretty full right now. And then Jesus also says any man who is going to build a tower; let him sit down and count the cost. People should not have more children than they are able to take care of. That is irresponsible. And but, abortion is the taking of human life. So the question is there anything wrong with preventing conception? And my understanding is if you are preventing conception then there is nothing wrong with that. So if you are planning your families that way I think God would have us be responsible.

Danny: Right.

Pastor Doug: Now if a person has a strong feeling otherwise as Paul said I am saying this by permission and not by commandment. So there is no plain Scripture so all I can give you are those principles. Okay Danny?

Danny: But, I had thought about sitting down and contemplating the cost of building a house, but that is a good answer.

Pastor Doug: Well you know it is true there is a responsibility in having a family. You want to make sure you are going to have the time to invest in the family and the means to raise them. But, you and I know there are families and they multiply like bunnies and all their children are being supported by the government because they are not thinking about caring for their children. And you can’t blame the Bible on that.

Danny: Yes a Christian man with children then it would be okay if his wife desired for her to tie her tubes?

Pastor Doug: In my opinion if I were you I would consult my doctor about what is the healthiest method, but preventing whether it is a permanent process or a medical process and as long as it is not going to harm your health then I don’t see any harm in it.

Danny: Okay I understand. Hey when you coming to Mississippi?

Pastor Doug: Is that in North America? I am teasing.


Pastor Doug: I will try to get there before too long okay?

Danny: I sure will be glad.

Pastor Doug: Alright. Well thanks a lot Danny. God bless. Alright who so we have here who has been waiting on line 2 Jessie is calling from Walla Walla, Washington on KGTS welcome Jessie.

Jessie: Hi God bless you. Yes and I have been doing some research on the Dome of the Rock stands on what part of Solomon’s temple used to be. Right?

Pastor Doug: Correct. It’s called the Basque of Omar.

Jessie: Okay my question is do you think that American Christians are aware that the Bush Administration liberation of Muslim countries is weakening control of the Muslim Nations over the Dome of the Rock which will actually help the anti-Christ rebuild Solomon’s temple and take his seat like mentioned in 11 Thessalonians 1?

Pastor Doug: Is this a question or are you making a statement?

Jessie: Do you think it’s a question?


Pastor Doug: Alright first of all I hear built into your question that you believe that the temple must be rebuilt before the anti-Christ can take his seat.

Jessie: Yes I think so.

Pastor Doug: Alright let me share a few thoughts with you. In the Christian church there are two primary views on that. A lot of what you are quoting is coming from 11 Thessalonians Chapter 2 where it talks about the beast power and I agree this sis the beast power. And it says “The wicked one who exalts himself above all that is called God for he sits in the temple of God showing himself as he is God.”

Jessie: Right.

Pastor Doug: Question is what does that tell you about the temple? When Jesus died on the cross the veil in the earthly temple was ripped from top to bottom because Christ fulfilled the sacrificial system and He is the Lamb of God right?

Jessie: Right.

Pastor Doug: Now let me just go on. And I want to remind to remind you that I have been to the Dome of the Rock twice and I am Jewish so let me share with you what I do know. The Jews do not sacrifice labs anymore both in Israel and I North America there are orthodox Jews and even more secular Jews of course. There is another interpretation for what the temple means in the New Testament. Paul said what don’t you know that you are the temple of God? Not only in 11 Corinthians Chapter 3 and again Peter said we are living stones built up to a royal house. Paul says in Ephesians Chapter 2 that we are the temple of God. So Christ said destroy this temple made with hands and in three days I will make one without hands. So that church is also a temple so the anti-Christ power sitting in the temple of God can also be a picture of not rebuilding the Jewish temple, but it can be a picture of the beast trying to sneak into the church the way Judas did.

Jessie: Amen. Doesn’t it also mention the abomination of desolation sitting in the temple I think which is mentioned in one of the gospels?

Pastor Doug: Well yes Jesus talks about the abomination of desolation standing in the holy place. And so we just have to ask ourselves if Christ died on the cross what is that holy place? There is one theology that says well obviously the temple has to be rebuilt for there to be that holy place. You know this a big study can I make a recommendation to you?

Jessie: Sure.

Pastor Doug: There is a book that we carry at “Amazing Facts” And I can’t give this away to you because we don’t publish it. It is produced by Steve Wohlberg and he is a friend of mine a Jewish believer and it is dealing with the temple the rebuilding of the temple and the city of Jerusalem and it is a very fascinating book. And the title is “The Israel Deception” and it is the title of “Exploding the Israel Deception” and yes that is the title and I am trying to read their lips through the glass. Anyway when you go online you will find it just look up Steve Wohlberg.

Jessie: Okay and thank you.

Pastor Doug: It is an outstanding book and there are a lot of misunderstandings about where the temple fits in and I think you should see both sides of it.

Jessie: Yes.

Pastor Doug: And by the way I respect your initial comment and I agree with you that the dynamics between the Arabs and the Israelis are changing under this Administration. It is very interesting.

Jessie: Amen.

Pastor Doug: Well thank you for your question.

Jessie: Thank you God bless you.

Pastor Doug: Well I think we can get one more in here. We are going to talk to Pam is it Zillah, Washington?

Pam: Yes that’s right.

Pastor Doug: Is that like Godzilla. Okay KAOH and you are listening with your question please?


Pam: I have a seven and a half year old daughter and she wants to be baptized.

Pastor Doug: Bless her heart.

Pam: And last year she really wanted to be baptized, but we just had an evangelistic meeting and she really wants to be baptized. And the pastor has visited and said it is basically up to my husband and me. I have put her off with studies like we are studying now which would take her up to where she is eight years old, but may question is she really mature enough to do this?

Pastor Doug: What is the right age to get baptized?

Pam: Well I am wondering is she too young and could it damage her if she is baptized?

Pastor Doug: Well let me just share something with you and I was talking to an eighty–one year old Pastor last night who worked with kids for most of his life. He said that statistically the ones that make the decision between eight and ten that thirteen per cent of those become Christians do it during that time. The percentages drop after that. Now Jesus went to the temple when He was twelve and I think that is the ideal age when they are just going through puberty and know the plan of salvation and understand the difference between right and wrong. They know that they are sinners that need forgiveness and to accept that. In other words when they are old enough to be lost then they are then old enough to be saved. And you need to ask that question and my own opinion Pam is as a Pastor I feel more comfortable when the kids get to be nine and ten before they are baptized I just baptized my son who I think was nine at the time and my wife was baptized at nine and she is still in the church. So I am not drawing the line in the sand and please understand I mean if your daughter is tugging you are better off saying yes now and not regretting it the rest of your life.

Pam: That was my concern because she is young.

Pastor Doug: Well like you said give her some goals and the other thing I like to know is when I am baptizing young people do they have their own personal devotions?

Pam: and that is one thing I am working with, too.

Pastor Doug: I tell them look if you say you want to be a member of the church and you want to have this status of being married to Christ then you have to have your own personal relationship. That means every morning they get up and read their Bible and say their own personal prayers as well as family worship. And so there is a goal for er to shoot for okay?

Pam: Okay thank you very much.

Pastor Doug: God bless you I appreciate it. Okay I am looking at some of these questions and seeing what we have time for. Carolyn in Victorville, California we have about a minute can I do anything to help you in a minute?

Carolyn: Well actually thank you for taking my call real quickly. I have a friend who is Jewish and he is asking questions about the Bible and about I am not real knowledgeable on the Jewish religion or the faith or anything. He is starting to ask me questions about Christ and who Jesus was and I don’t know why. Does he want o know more about the Lord or if he wants to dispute me?

Pastor Doug: Be argumentative? Well I will tell you a quick way to solve that is to hand him a New Testament. He doesn’t need the Old Testament they already have that. Hand him a New Testament and say read Matthew, Mark and John I want to know what you think and then we’ll talk.

Carolyn: Okay do you have any books I can get? Do you have any literature out there for myself to read on that which might help me understand that also?

Pastor Doug: That perspective?

Carolyn: Yes.

Pastor Doug: Well at the “Amazing Facts dot org” website there is a lot you can go to and download. You can find a bunch of free information there to read on witnessing, sharing your faith and Bible studies. My testimony would appeal to a Jewish believer. Friends—oh I am sorry Carolyn we are out of time—we are glad you tuned in and pray that you will keep us in your prayers and remember this is a listener supported ministry and most of all it is not the details; it is knowing Jesus that is the truth that sets you free.




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