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The Texas Blind Salamander

Date: 08/07/2005 
In 1895 in San Marcos, Texas a team of well drillers were attempting to construct an artesian well for a fish hatchery. So they sank a 190 foot shaft to reach an underground spring called purgatory creek.
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Hello this is Doug Batchelor. How about an amazing fact? In 1895 in San Marcos, Texas a team of well drillers were attempting to construct an artesian well for a fish hatchery. So they sank a 190 foot shaft to reach an underground spring called purgatory creek. With the water that came from the well came one of the strangest creatures in the world. There living in the pitch black recesses of the earth was a weird salamander which was the likes of which had never been seen before. Rathbuni salamander as it came to be called.

It has no eyes and as a matter of fact it has almost no head. Its pale transparent body is extremely thin and tapers into the head with a flat spoon like snout. Sticking out like antlers just behind its head are external gills for breathing. This strange salamander is also called the Texas blind salamander because it is found only in Hayes County Texas. And it is so rare it is on the endangered species list. It has four toes on the front feet and five on the hind feet. Its skinny legs are abnormally long enabling it to stand tall and better sense movements made by the tiny swimming organisms that make up its diet. The amount of food in purgatory creek is incredibly sparse.

Just a few tiny invertebrates and crustaceans and snails in fact scientists are amazed that anything can exist in such a food poor environment. Besides the fact that the Rathbuni salamander has much more highly developed lateral organ. These are special sensors that lie along the sides of water dwelling creatures. This is the organ that allows a school of fish to swim in such a well synchronized ballet. The more sensitive the lateral line sensors the easier it is for the creature to detect movements in the surrounding water. Can you imagine living your entire life in the frigid water of a dark subterranean cave? Oblivious that there was a bright world above teeming with life and likewise many people in our dark world are spiritually blind and totally unaware that there is a better brighter and more beautiful world above. Stay with us friends we will learn more as “Amazing Facts” brings you this edition of “Bible Answers Live”.

[PROGRAM INTRODUCTION]

Pastor Doug: Hello friends welcome and to those who have questions call 1-800-GOD-SAYS or 1-800-463-7297. This is a live, International and interactive Bible study. We are inviting you to participate and it is a free phone call if you in North America. We have some lines open if you have a question we will be here for about another 58 minutes. That’s 1-800-463-7297 and we are here with you live in the flesh. My name is Doug Batchelor.

Pastor Dick: My name is Dick Debit. Good evening Pastor Doug.

Pastor Doug: Good evening Pastor Dick. It has been a couple of weeks since we have been sitting across from each other. We have been staggering vacation time.

Pastor Dick: Yes we kind of ran into each other at least once.

Pastor Doug: Briefly at the campgrounds in the Redwood Forest.

Pastor Dick: Yes that is right.

Pastor Doug: But, it is good to be back with our friends and why don’t we start our program with a word of prayer?

Pastor Dick: And we are live so let’s pray together. Father in heaven we want to praise you and thank you for this privilege of being able to come into the studios and open the Bible and share God’s word with each other. And we pray heavenly Father that you will speak clearly to us that we may hear from your very throne room in heaven. You have a plan that you are working out for us lord and we thank you for that plan. And we thank you for being in control and we pray that you will teach us to be obedient and responsive to your word. And Lord may Pastor Doug have clarity of mind and thought tonight as we seek to answer the questions. Thank you Lord in Jesus’ name. Amen.

Pastor Doug: Amen.

Pastor Dick: This is a strange little creature that you have been taking about.

Pastor Doug: This is a very rare, very bizarre and it obviously has gone through a type of evolution. The evolution and I am not speaking of it from one species to the next, but this salamanders its’ eyes are basically the scaled remnants under the skin and its’ skin is almost translucent and just living off of these microbe crustaceans and snails. It is so strange that it would live in caverns and aqueducts. They are up to eighty feet down.

Pastor Dick: But, I know you well enough to believe it.

Pastor Doug: When I heard they found this poor creature in Purgatory Creek and in Texas they had named this underground river and you think about this thing as living in the dark it made me think of how many people are in their virtual purgatory and are living in this dark world and they don’t know what God has in store for them. And it is such a meager existence and this creature it almost looks malnourished because it has such a meager diet and that is very skinny and you can see pictures online.

Pastor Dick: And without the word of God we are all that way aren’t we?

Pastor Doug: That’s right and people they need to know that God has an abundant life for them. There is an eternal life and a better life above. And maybe some of our listeners don’t know that God tells us and Jesus went to prepare a place for you because in my Father’s house are many mansions. So we’d like them to know about that.

Pastor Dick: One of the people just before we came on the air in the studio with us said I want to know heaven looks like. And don’t we all?

Pastor Doug: Amen.

Pastor Dick: We really don’t know.

Pastor Doug: There are a few privileged people that Paul talks about someone that was caught up to the third heaven and saw things that cannot even be uttered. But, there are descriptions in the Bible describing the different facets of heaven.

Pastor Dick: That is right and we want to make available to our callers and listeners tonight his book written by Joe Crews it is called “Heaven is it for Real?” And it is free and if you will call our resource operators right now we will make it available to you. The operators are standing by waiting for your calls. 1-800-835-6747 is the number. 1-800-835-6747 if you call right now our operators are standing by to take your call. Folks I can tell you that this will plant a picture in your hearts and minds of what heaven really looks like. And it is something that will be with you the rest of your life. “Heaven is it for Real?”

Pastor Doug, do you want to take a couple of email questions before we take our first call? So the first one is from Jeff and he says explain to me if you will 1 Peter chapter 3 where it says Jesus went and preached into the spirits when he died and was in the tomb.

Pastor Doug: This is one of the most misunderstood passages and whole doctrines have been built on a very simple misunderstanding. Let me read it to you friends 1 Peter Chapter 3: 18 “For as Christ also suffered once for sins, the just for the unjust, that he might bring us to God, being put to death in the flesh, but quickened by the Spirit.” Now the subject here is the spirit and Jesus was brought alive by the spirit. And He went and preached to spirits “small s’ sometimes it refers to all the souls in the city and it doesn’t mean ghost. It means people. Those who were imprisoned by the devil back in the day of Noah are what are what he is referring to. Through the Holy Spirit God preached and the same Spirit that brought Jesus back from the dead God preached to those people in prison by the devil that were formerly disobedient when once the long suffering of God waited in the days of Noah while the Ark was being prepared.

Now some people believe that Jesus went back and preached in hell to the people who died during the time of Noah in the flood who were in some kind of incarceration down there to give them another chance. That teaching really flies in the face of every other teaching in the Bible that says this life has a chance to choose. And it is appointed once unto man to die and after that the judgment. He was referring to a verse in Genesis Chapter 6: 3 where god says “My Spirit will not always strive with man.” He is talking about when God’s Spirit strove with people preaching Noah for 120 years that is the same Spirit that brought Christ back and a lot of people think that Jesus really didn’t die on the cross that He entered another dimension where he preached to people to give them a second chance and while it might be an entertaining doctrine; you should never build a new theology on one verse. This is what it is talking about.

Pastor Dick: It doesn’t fly does it? And Joshua said chose you this day whom you will serve. This is our chance. This life is our chance.

Pastor Doug: Exactly.

Pastor Dick: Second question. This is from Brad who says my question is in Isaiah and the messiah is to be called Immanuel. And in the gospels the angel told Mary his name shall be Jesus. I don’t find anything in the Bible that says Jesus means Immanuel or vice versa.

Pastor Doug: Well it doesn’t because the word Jesus is the Greek pronunciation of the name Yashua which means savior or Yahweh is savior. Shua is the word savior. Like Elisha is God Elohim is Savior. Yashua is Yahweh is Savior. And the angel said this is what His name will be and they named Him Yashua. And as a matter of fact if you went to the temple in the time of Christ that is what they wrote next to his name when he was circumcised on the eighth day. But Isaiah is referring to one of His titles. He will be called God with us. And they said this is what happened God has come to dwell with us.

They did say that of Jesus during His life. And it was one of His titles and of course Jesus has got more titles than any other person; everything from the bread of life, to the living water, to the door, the Sheppard, and the Lamb so one of His many titles; God with us. God came to earth in the form of a man to dwell among us.

Pastor Dick: Amen. Praise the Lord. Well let’s go to the phones and take our first call of the evening and I just want to remind folks that we do have at least one line open right now at 1-800-GOD-SAYS or 1-800-463-7297. If you have a Bible related question now would be a good time to call.

Pastor Doug we will start in Sulphur, Oklahoma with Alison. Hello Alison. Welcome to the program.

Alison: Hi.

Pastor Dick: And your question please?

Alison: My question is the Bible says that when Jesus comes back every eye will see Him and even those who pierced Him. And I wondered how that could be possible because the earth is round.

Pastor Doug: Good question and we have had that several times. You find that in Revelation Chapter 1: 7 “Behold, he cometh in the clouds; and every eye shall see him, and they also which pierced him: and all kindreds of the earth shall wail because of him. Even, so, Amen.” And if you notice it does not say that every eye will see Him simultaneously and this is where people are confused they assume that everyone will see Him all at once, but it says it with the understanding that as the Lord comes He sweeps around to circle the earth and His feet do not touch the ground when He comes this time. 1 Thessalonians says we are caught up to meet Him in the air. Leading us to believe that He never does come to touch the earth again until the end of the 1000 years when the Bible says His feet touch the Mount of Olives in Zechariah 15. So and then I have had people ask me before what will happen to the people on the space shuttle or space station when He comes back and that really confounds me more than this question.

[Laughter]

Pastor Doug: But, I see that the Lord is going to sweep around the circle of the earth and you know in one day the whole world can see the sun…

Alison: Yes that is right.

Pastor Doug: … because the earth is circling and in the same way the Lord will sweep around and I think if I am not mistaken the space station in one day circles the earth many times. And in the same way I think the Lord will sweep around the earth and every eye will see Him. And He will rapture up those who are redeemed and then evil is destroyed by the brightness of His coming and He takes them back to heaven for a millennium.

Alison: So wicked are destroyed they are destroyed as He like you said encircles the earth. They will see the glory and be destroyed by the glory and then the saints will be gathered together and taken up.

Pastor Doug: Yes it is what it tells us in 1 Thessalonians that the wicked are destroyed by the brightness of His coming. So at His coming that same glory that the saints praise the wicked you know they run from it and hide under the caves in the mountains. And it is a consuming fire. The glory of God is a consuming fire to the lost.

Alison: Yes. Well thank you very much Doug. I appreciate it and that was what I wondered if He could encircle the earth and that is what I had asked a lot of friends and people and they just didn’t know what to say. But, I had wondered it hat were possible and I am glad that you told me that.

Pastor Doug: And what is more I think the Bible teaches that He is coming from the east which follows with the scientific model of how the earth rotates in that direction.

Alison: Wow. Well that is really neat and I am really glad to hear that. I was bothered by this question for quite some time. But, I am glad to hear it so thank you very much.

Pastor Doug: Well praise the Lord another happy customer.

[Laughter]

Pastor Dick: Thank you for the call Alison. We’ll go next to Ellenton, New York where Gina is listening on WMCA. Hi Gina and what is your question tonight?

Gina: Hi. My question is that I am going to have a baby brother or sister soon.

Pastor Doug: Congratulations.

Gina: What?

Pastor Doug: Congratulations that is exciting.

Gina: Thanks and I was baptized as a baby, but now Dad says it isn’t necessary to baptize the baby. When should you be baptized?

Pastor Doug: Alright well let’s find out what Jesus says and we’re going to believe what He says in the Bible. Right?

Gina: Yes.

Pastor Doug: Okay. In the Bible before you are baptized Jesus says in Matthew 28 we should be taught to observe what He has commanded us. Can a baby be taught to observe the commandments of God or are they a little young to understand that?

Gina: A little young.

Pastor Doug: In Acts Chapter 2 it says that we should repent and be baptized. Can a baby repent?

Gina: No.

Pastor Doug: Of course they don’t even know they have sinned at that age. And in the Bible in Acts Chapter 8 that we should believe and be baptized. Well can a baby believe? It is difficult for them. Right?

Gina: Umm-hmm.

Pastor Doug: So all of the things that the Lord says we should do in preparation for baptism are really impossible for a little baby to do. Matter of fact they need to wait until they get to be about your age. What are you about ten years old?

Gina: Yes.

Pastor Doug: When they prepare for baptism they need to understand the gospel and invite Jesus into their hearts and repent of their sins and then be baptized.

Gina: Okay thank you.

Pastor Doug: Alright good question. Thank you. Oh by the way if you would like Gina we have a free booklet on baptism we’d be happy to send you. All you have to do is call the number that Pastor Dick is going to give and ask for our lesson on baptism.

Gina: Okay.

Pastor Dick: Gina here’s the telephone number that I want you to call it is 1-800-835-6747

Gina: 6747 thank you.

Pastor Dick: Okay. Bye-bye and thanks for the call. Let’s go to Portland, Oregon Merlin is a first time caller. Welcome Merlin and your question?

Merlin: Hi. My question is there are two verses in Matthew and Luke that Jesus talks about of the end of time and the time of Christ coming. They both talk about a time of not having children and in those days’ specifically very young children. Can you explain both of those verses? Matthew 24:19 and Luke 23: 29 is it suggesting that there comes time when we recognize the signs that we should be maybe more focused on our personal lives than having children?

Pastor Doug: Matthew 24: 19 “Woe to them that are with child and to them that gives suck in those days!” Now keep in mind that Jesus is saying this in connection with Christians fleeing for their lives. And just after that in verse 20 “But pray that your flight may not be in the winter, neither on the Sabbath day: 21 For then shall there be great tribulation such as was not since the beginning of this world to this time, no, nor ever shall be.”

So He is talking about Christians that may have to flee. And some have wondered more specifically if He is talking about to the Jews and speaking about the destruction Jerusalem. And let me tell you why. When Christ was crucified He said to the women and this is in the gospel of Luke. Daughters of Jerusalem don’t weep for me weep for yourself because the day is coming when they will say blessed is th womb that does not bear and the breast that does not nurse. And He was speaking vey specifically there when Jerusalem would be besieged by the Romans and there was a terrible famine in the city and some of the parents ate their own offspring. And so when Christ answers in Matthew 24 they ask Him three questions. What is the sign of your coming, the destruction of Jerusalem and the end of the world? So remember He said there will not be left one stone upon another when the temple is destroyed. Some scholars are wondering if the verse about woe to those with child is that referring to the destruction of Jerusalem. Do you see what I am saying because they connect it with the verse in Luke?

Merlin: Right.

Pastor Doug: Now it is true there will also come a time when the abomination of desolation is set up and Christians are forced to flee because of the persecution it will obviously be more difficult for parents who have young children because they have to be carried and they are a little more tender. When Jacob was bringing his flocks back into Jerusalem he told his brother if I over drive them one day the young will perish. And so you have to be more delicate and there may come a time when those who have young children are really going to regret for the child’s sake their infancy. What that time is we don’t know. I wondered this very same question 29 years ago when we had our first child. Well I thought I had better not and I am glad I went ahead now. Do you know what I am saying?

Merlin: Yes.

Pastor Doug: So it is a question I would never dare to answer for someone you need to pray and ask the Lord how He would impress you. We don’t know when that day is.

Merlin: Yes that is a good point. Thank you.

Pastor Doug: Thank you.

Pastor Dick: Merlin thanks for the call we really appreciate it. Let’s go next to Queens, New York WMCA is the station and Gil has a question for us.

Gill: Good evening. It is pleasure to meet you guys again. My question has to do with 1 Samuel Chapter 28 and it has to deal with Samuel. Do you believe that Samuel was literally Samuel? Or was that just some kind of a trick because I know in 2 Corinthians it says that Satan comes as an angel of light. What is your opinion on that?

Pastor Doug: Well you have given my opinion. That Scripture there in 2 Corinthians is the best answer. Do not marvel for Satan and himself is transformed into an angel of light. And for our friends who are listening King Saul who grieved away the Holy Spirit and God would not speak to him and he ended up committing suicide and just before he died he went to witch who supposedly conjured up Samuel the prophet form the dead and we have to ask the question. Does a witch have the power to call up dead saints of God? And I think the obvious answer is no. The devil does not have the power of resurrection. And these are people who belong to God and further more that is why the Lord commands us not to communicate or consult or tolerate people who are involved in witchcraft and sorcery and consulting with familiar spirits. Good message that this apparition appeared and claimed to be Saul, but the devil is the master of counterfeit. This message was a very discouraging message that ultimately caused Saul to commit suicide instead of repent. And that‘s the work of the devil. So I think it was a diabolical sprit that was impersonating Saul and it --I am sorry Samuel. Thank you Dick. And then we need to ask this question doesn’t the Bible tell us that Satan will impersonate Christ in the last days? There will be false Christ’s and false prophets. Well in order to look like a counterfeit Christ you need to resemble the real isn’t that true Gill?

Gill: Yes.

Pastor Doug: So the devil he hasn’t changed his motes operands for a long time. And way back then he was imitating the servants of God.

Gill: But, wasn’t the witch sort of scared when she saw Samuel? Wasn’t she kind of surprised?

Pastor Doug: Well I am sure she was because it was a real apparition. Any spiritual manifestation can be unnerving.

Gill: I meant wasn’t she surprised because she thought it literally was Samuel?

Pastor Doug: Well she may have been I am not denying that I believe the devil is trying to not only deceive God’s people, but sometimes he can deceive his own.

Gill: Yes.

Pastor Doug: Right.

Gill: Yes.

Pastor Doug: Alright I hope that helps a little bit and if you have more questions we have a lesson on that called “Are the Dead Really Dead?” Call and we will send that to you Gill.

Pastor Dick: 1-800-835-6747 Gill 1-800-835-6747 “Are the Dead Really Dead?” Give the operators a call and they will send it out to you. Let’s go next to Grand Forks, North Dakota and talk with Amanda who is listening on KPAR welcome Amanda.

Amanda: Hello. You know it says we need to be baptized so we are not lost forever? Well I don’t know how to share this with the people that my sister and brother are with because I am kind of scared that they will be lost just because they don’t know.

Pastor Doug: Well are they Christians? Baptism doesn’t make you a Christian baptism is something that is a commitment of Christians.

Amanda: Well they are young yet and so I imagine it is not the number one thing in their life.

Pastor Doug: How old are they?

Amanda: My sister is 20 and my brother is 18.

Pastor Doug: Well they are plenty old enough for baptism. You know what I would ask if they are open to you talking about spiritual things?

Amanda: Well my brother is adopted and my sister gets mad at me for trying to share.

Pastor Doug: There are three ways to witness to your loved ones and I think baptism would be a little further down the line.

Amanda: Well they used to go to church on Sabbath and…

Pastor Doug: And they have wandered away?

Amanda: Well it is because of the people they ended up being with now.

Pastor Doug: Ah I see. The relatives get in the way.

Amanda: I don’t know how to get through to them and yes. Well I just don’t want them to get mad and say well you just can’t talk to your sister and brother anymore.

Pastor Doug: I see what you are saying and there are three things you can do. And it sounds to me like you can do at least two out of these three.

1. Be a good example let them see Christ in you because sometimes this is the only sermon people will ever hear.

2. Pray for them and nobody can stop you from that. Ask the Lord to intervene and sometimes the Lord will use a third party to reach our loved ones because He can’t use us.

3. And then if it is possible to gracefully share information either verbally or you might give them a tape on salvation or a DVD or something like that or a book.

But, those are the three things that you can do to try to contact them for returning to the Lord.

Amanda: Well I pray for them all the time and I pray that Jesus will send somebody into their life to try to explain this better than I can I guess. You know since I am the sister having somebody come in and try to talk to them can be a good witness.

Pastor Doug: Oh I know I believe this. I understand completely. Well you keep doing that and it sounds like the prayers that you are storing in heaven right now are not going to be in vain. And pray for an opportunity to witness. Or that like I said God will reach them through a third party. Well we are going to take a break for just a few minutes to catch our breath. It is still only the last half and we will dedicate it to nothing but Bible questions. In the meantime you can listen to this program on the internet. To access all the free resources we have at our library just go to “Amazing Facts dot org” in addition you’ll see that there are a whole bookstore and catalog filled with Christian resources to help you with your witnessing and your personal relationship with Jesus. Once again that is “Amazing Facts dot org” and we will be back in just a moment after these announcements.

[COMMERCIAL BREAK]

Pastor Doug: We’re back and this is the second half of “Bible Answers Live” we are a live, International, interactive Bible study. If you want to call in a Bible question that’s 1-800-GOD-SAYS or 1-800-463-7297 and you can pray for us as we search the word together for answers. My name is Doug Batchelor.

Pastor Dick: My name is Dick Debit. And Pastor Doug we want to go straight to the phones and take the first cal from Lola in Fresno, California who is listening on KARM. Hi Lola.

Lola: Hi. You answered part of my question in 1 Peter 3: 19 about the spirits in prison.

Pastor Doug: Yes.

Lola: But, the second half of my question was in Ecclesiastes 12: 7 “Then shall the dead turn to dust and the spirit shall return unto God who gave it.” I’m confused about who were these different spirits?

Pastor Doug: Well I’ll tell you what confuses people. Is that the word for spirit there in Ecclesiastes 12: 7 it says in their deaths will return to the dust and the spirit will return to God who gave it.

Lola: Is it 7 or 17?

Pastor Doug: Ecclesiastes 12: 7 I looked it up.

Lola: Okay sorry.

Pastor Doug: This is talking about the spirit of all men not just the saved or lost and even the creatures. And the word spirit here is translated literally “the breathe”. Do you remember in Genesis that it says and God breathed into the nostrils of Adam the breathe of life? It is the exact same word and he became a living soul. And so it is simply saying that when a person dies his body turns back to dust and the spirit returns to God. And that is all that it is saying. This is not a little ghost that goes flying to heaven and begins a new existence because that would make it sound like that everybody goes to heaven when they die.

Lola: Right. Thank you. So in this the spirit is the breathe of life?

Pastor Doug: it is. Al you have to do is get a Strong’s concordance and look it up and the word is “rolla” I believe. Matter of fact in the book of Job it says “The spirit of God is in my nostrils.” Well we don’t normally think of the Holy Ghost inhabiting our nose, but it is the same word there. The breath of God is in my nostrils. Okay?

Lola: Okay thank you very much and bless you much.

Pastor Dick: Thank you Lola. And we will go next to Milken, Illinois Anita is listening on the internet. Welcome Anita.

Anita: Hi. I was wondering about the dietary law of not eating the milk and meat together. Are we supposed to still follow that and not use the same by- products of animals like eggs and chicken or milk and beef or maybe not even drinking milk with beef.

Pastor Doug: Well really if I am not mistaken the law about the milk and beef was not really a health issue. I think it says that you are not supposed to cook a kid in its mother’s milk. And I think that there is a spiritual application there. The milk was to keep the kid alive can you imagine what a paradox that would be to baste a baby goat in the same milk of its mother?

So this is a law of decency that God gave them in the Bible. I don’t think it was a health law. Is that the way you understand that?

Pastor Dick: Umm-hmm.

Pastor Doug: I don’t think that He is making a statement that you are not supposed to eat milk and meat together. Well they are both high in cholesterol.

Anita: Because of the baby and the mother?

Pastor Doug: Yes that is the emphasis I think is meant. I am trying to find that verse right now.

Anita: Exodus 23: 19 is one of them.

Pastor Doug: Yes I have it right here. It says “Thou shall not seethe a kid in his mother’s milk.” If you’ll notice it doesn’t say eat meat and milk, it says cook a kid goat in the milk of its own mother that’s the law.

Anita: So it doesn’t mean like the verse that the Jews cited on that why they don’t do those things?

Pastor Doug: Well there are—of course there are a number of other kosher laws that are given in another category in Exodus and Leviticus. But, that’s distinct from this law. This is a principle. Let me give you another example of a law that matches this one. It said you are not supposed to yoke a donkey and oxen together when you plow your field. You should yoke two donkeys or two oxen, but not an oxen and a donkey. One is an unclean animal and one is a clean animal. And their habits and temperaments are so different that it is confusing to try and get them to pull in harmony.

Anita: Okay.

Pastor Doug: So sometimes God gives some practical laws about avoiding mixing certain things and violating purity. He says you’ll not sow your field with mixed seed. You weren’t to mix up your rye and your barley and your whet and go throw it altogether in the field because they sprout at different times. And so it is just a law about purity and decency.

Anita: Okay. Thank you.

Pastor Doug: Thank you.

Pastor Dick: Thanks for the call Anita. We’ll go next to Altamonte Springs, Florida. William is listening on WHAM William welcome to the program.

William: Good evening and thank you for the opportunity to be in your program. My question is how much does God need our prayers?

Pastor Doug: God doesn’t need our prayers.

William: Alright because that is the argument that I had this morning with George and they told me that God needs our prayers. And I said God doesn’t need our prayers God doesn’t need nothing from us.

Pastor Doug: Well let me quote to you Matthew Chapter 6: 8 “Be therefore not like unto them the pagans praying in vain repetitions. For your Father knoweth what things you have need of before you ask him.” Never praying to inform God praying does not bring God down to us; prayer brings us up to God. He knows what we need before we ask Him so we are not informing Him. Now the Lord loves to hear us pray because He wants to have a relationship with us.

William: Amen.

Pastor Doug: So in that sense you might say He needs our prayers the same way as in a marriage we need communication. Do you see what I am saying?

William: Correct. Yes. I really appreciate the way that you answer because you gave me a good text to refute their way of thinking.

Pastor Doug: Alright well glad we could help.

William: Thank you.

Pastor Dick: Thanks for the call William. God bless. Let’s go to Orange, New Jersey Maria is listening on WMCA. Hi Maria.

Maria: Oh hi.

Pastor Dick: Get real close to your telephone Maria.

Maria: Okay. Can you hear me now?

Pastor Dick: Yes that is better.

Maria: I have been reading the Bible from the beginning and it has made sense up until I got to Isaiah and I have been reading it over and over. I have one text that really confuses me it is Isaiah 14: 12 and it says “How you are fallen from heaven, O Lucifer, son of the morning! How art thou cut down to the ground, which didst weaken the nations!” And I don’t know why they bring Lucifer up and how it was confusing to me.

Pastor Doug: Alright good question. In prophecy and Isaiah is a prophet and this is a prophecy. It is common for a prophet to begin looking at an earthly power and in this case I think he is talking about the king of Babylon. Yes he is in verse 3 he is talking about the king of Babylon and then to look at the spiritual power behind the earthly power.

Let me give you another example. In Revelation 12 it talks about this great red dragon which is the devil. It calls him Satan, the serpent, the devil. You can’t confuse it and it says that this devil tries to destroy Jesus the man child when he is a baby. Well he worked through the Roman Empire king Herod. In Ezekiel Chapter 28 there is a prophecy about the king of Tyre. And all of a sudden the prophet’s eyes roll back and he sees behind the king of Tyre in a vision and he begins to talk about the devil who was in the Garden of Eden and how he had been made a perfect angel. So this is another case in prophecy where he is being taken behind the scenes of the king of Babylon and he sees the fall of Lucifer. Now Jesus quotes this in the New Testament when He says “I beheld Satan fall from heaven.” That’s Luke 10: 18 there Jesus says I beheld Satan fall as lightening from heaven. And the in Revelation 12 it says there was war in heaven and Satan was cast out. So when Isaiah said how are you fallen from heaven oh Lucifer—Lucifer is the original name of the devil and Lucifer means son of the morning and then he became Satan and that word means adversary.

So it is a good question, but the prophets are being taken from an earthly power to the spiritual one. The veil is being pulled aside and they are seeing the diabolical power behind the earthly power. Who do you think was behind Adolf Hitler? Jesus or the devil?

Maria: The devil.

Pastor Doug: Okay well that’s the point.

Maria: Okay. And how about the talk about hell from beneath is excited about you? And that is Isaiah 14: 9

Pastor Doug: Okay let me go back there. I have been jumping around. Isaiah 14:9?

Maria: Yes.

Pastor Doug: Well the word hell there means grave. Yes it says 9”Hell from beneath is moved for thee to meet at thy coming; it stirreth up the dead for thee, even all the chief ones of the earth; it hath raised up their thrones all the kings of the nations.”

Maria: Is it like a metaphor?

Pastor Doug: No this is actually a prophecy. You can read in Revelation 20 when it says at the end of 1000 years Satan is loosed from his prison and all the wicked come back to life. They come out of their graves. So if you read Revelation 20 connected with Isaiah 14:9 a light will come on and you will see the connection.

Maria: Okay.

Pastor Doug: There are a number of these Old Testament apocalyptic prophecies that find their fulfillment when you get to Revelation.

Maria: Okay. I find that the Bible keeps going back to what you read previously.

Pastor Doug: Well keep studying. Yes exactly. I am very proud of you that you have read straight through to Isaiah huh?

Maria: Yes.

Pastor Doug: Good keep it up and God bless.

Maria: Okay thank you.

Pastor Dick: Thanks for the call Maria. To Loma Linda, California Arden is listening on KTIE hello Arden.

Arden: Hello. Pastor Doug and Pastor Dick thank you for taking my call. Before I go on with my question I just wanted to say that I really enjoyed the Prophecy Code seminars that you had way back in March they were a true blessing to me. And to a friend and family alike as well as to myself; I just want to thank you for that.

Pastor Doug: Well we praise God that He used the program and it was a very successful series. We’re thankful.

Arden: My question is about the Bible itself. With respect to I am trying to read my Bible everyday and how do I know that I am reading my Bible for the right reasons and if I am not then how do I change my reasons?

Pastor Doug: Oaky I am going to start by answering something you’re not especially asking. Even if you are reading it for the wrong reasons keep reading it.

[Laughter]

Pastor Dick: Amen.

Arden: Okay sure.

Pastor Doug: You know sometimes a person may not have an appetite, but the doctor says you need to eat. And they may not even enjoy their food, but they eat.

Pastor Dick: That’s right.

Pastor Doug: And so sometimes you may not even enjoy reading it, but you need to keep on reading it. It is having a nutritional effect you are not even aware of. Now sometimes we eat and part of the Passover was they eat bitter herbs. But, there was no nutritional value.

So to answer your question how do you know if you are reading it for the right or the wrong reasons? There is nothing wrong with having a combination of reasons for reading the Bible. First of all it is there for instruction and righteousness according to 1 Timothy Chapter 3. It is there for inspiration. We read the Bible for guidance “Thy word is a lamp unto my feet.” You know sometimes a light unto my path. Sometimes the word will give you very specific guidance on decisions. And important choices you need to make. And sometimes you will find things in the word you weren’t looking for when you started, but you know that God is speaking to you. It is there for comfort especially you know if you read books like Psalms and Job they are just filled with comfort for almost any kind of circumstance and even depression. So the Bible is the bread of life and we should eat it every day. And I religiously read and listen to my Bible everyday and every night. Sometimes I go to sleep at night when I am listening to my Bible tapes, but I keep doing it. And you sometimes eat food and it doesn’t always assimilate. Do you know what I mean?

Arden: Right.

Pastor Doug: So keep reading because you will get something out of the crumbs. Keep reading it and pray to God and ultimately I think the best reason is that you want to know the author. God speaks to us through the word and a love relationship with Him.

Pastor Dick: That’s right.

Pastor Doug: That’s the best reason I think. It’s a love letter from Jesus and you want to open it and hear what He has to say to you every day.

Arden: Wow that is so true. Well that’s a big help thank you ever so much.

Pastor Doug: Thank you.

Pastor Dick: Thanks for the call Arden. God bless you, too. Let’s go next to Brooklyn, New York. Dixon is on WMCA. Dixon good evening. Your question please?

Dixon: Yes good evening. Yes my question is in 2 Samuel 6: 14 to 16 when David had brought up an ark before the Lord. Is this saying it is okay for us to dance in church? First part of the question and the second part is did David take off his linen ephod?

Pastor Doug: This is talking about when they first brought the ark up to Jerusalem and I think it was from the house of Abinadab and David in his exuberance was Spirit filled and it says that he lept and twirled and it calls it a dance. Is this a justification for dancing in a church? First of all David was not in a sanctuary and this is not in reference to dancing in a sanctuary. There are 20 references to dancing in the Bible. I just pulled them up on my computer and none of them have to do with in the sanctuary. Most of the dancing in the Bible was the women and not dancing with the men. Women were dancing a dance of victory when the soldiers came back from battle. When Jetha came back his daughter came out with him and had tambourines for praise and the victory. Miriam danced for victory with the other women over the Egyptians. You’ve got the women who danced when David and Saul came back over victory over the Philistines.

These were very innocent folk celebrations they weren’t illustrate and were not sexually suggestive dances. It was basically more like a parade of praise. And it never took place in the sanctuary so that answers your first question.

David took off his royal robe and that was a means of humbling himself. He still had a linen ephod on. It would have been like a white night gown for you and me. And that’s why his wife Micah kind of gave him a hard time and said there you were in front to fall the maidens of Israel in your nothing on, but your night shirt. And David said I was just humbling myself. He said I am not the king today God is the king and I’m taking my robes off and I am going to dance before Him and praise him as His servant.

Pastor Dick: Amen.

Pastor Doug: So that was the attitude of what was happening here, but a lot of the dancing you see going on in the church in my opinion is more of a pagan hoot-an Annie. And I really don’t see any example of that in the Bible as a matter of fact most of the church for the first 1800 years there was a great deal of reverence when they worshipped before God. And they are trying to bring what happens like this victory into the sanctuary and I think there is a distinction between the two.

Dixon: Okay well thank you very much for your answer. I am satisfied.

Pastor Doug: Okay good.

Pastor Dick: Thanks for the call Dixon.

Dixon: Okay you are welcome.

Pastor Dick: God bless. Let’s stay in New York and go to Long Island and talk with Michelle who is also listening on WMCA. Welcome Michelle.

Michelle: Hi. I have a question. My husband and my daughter have been studying the Bible very closely and we listen every week to this show. I tag along and listen. And we also watch “Amazing Facts” but, the problem is I have a lot of mixed feelings. All my life I have been brought up a certain way and now I feel defensive when my husband tries to enlighten me to the truth that goes against what I have been taught. So the problem is I am feeling defensive. I am on the fence and want to return to my ways although I cannot find a backing for them.

Pastor Doug: Well it is like this when you are learning Biblical truths. When you find our Biblically they can’t really be supported that is a tremendous struggle. The disciples went through that same experience. They believed all their lives that when the Messiah came that he would have a sword in His hand and over throw all the Romans and throne of David and when Jesus came like a lamb instead of a lion and He die on the cross they were devastated. That was completely out of harmony with what their ideas and teachings had been. And they had to reeducate themselves that the first mission of the Messiah was He is coming like a lamb and it is the next time He comes like a lion. It confused the prophecies.

You know it was—there was an age our grandparents illuminated their houses with kerosene lamps. But, when they found out about the convenience of electric light most of them converted. Do you know what I am saying?

Michelle: Umm-hmm.

Pastor Dick: And so there comes a time when you say hey kerosene that is what we had back then, but now we know that electricity has been around all this time and is much better.

Michelle: But, I cried about it because of certain things that like as far as will God know you? Because I don’t follow certain things or whatever.

Pastor Doug: Now let me give you something to think about Michelle. Any new light that God gives you is not to be a burden, but a blessing. That doesn’t mean there won’t be a struggle in embracing that light, but the Bible tells us—here’s what Jesus said in the gospel of John “If you know these things happy, happy are ye if you do them.” You won’t experience the happiness until you surrender and say okay Lord I am going to be a doer of the word and not just a hearer. And when you take that step of faith and you draw near to God the promise is –James Chapter 4 “He will draw near to you.” So God is waiting to just bless you when you take the steps of faith. So many miracles are just lost to Christians because they just don’t take those initial steps of faith and trust God. It is not easy, but the truth will set you free. And you have to embrace it.

Michelle: I don’t trust myself you know. I am going by what I grew up to believe. What I thought I believed and you know.

Pastor Doug: No it is not easy. I mean I went through that same thing. I mean I remember when I first became a Christian I worshipped with my friends on Sunday and I had been taught all my life that that was the day and when I examined it Biblically it couldn’t stand up and I said well this isn’t very popular, but I want to follow Jesus and when I took a stand He just blessed.

Pastor Dick: Umm-hmm.

Michelle: You know this society is actually based on Sunday?

Pastor Doug: Well Jesus never promises that the world is going to make it easy for us to follow Him. He promises the opposite. He says if they persecuted me they will persecute you. So if we are waiting for it to be convenient in the world to follow Jesus that way it won’t happen.

Michelle: Well thanks for answering my questions and I will have to call you back another time. Thank you. I have a lot more.

Pastor Doug: Well give us a call at the office sometime. God bless.

Michelle: Okay thanks.

Pastor Dick: Thanks for the call Michelle. Great calls tonight Pastor.

Pastor Doug: Let’s save this program.

[Laughter]

Pastor Dick: Let’s go to Teaneck, New Jersey and talk with Debbie listening on the internet.

Debbie: Hi how are you doing? I would just like some verification. The answers you gave to one of your first callers who asked about Revelation Chapter 1: 7 where you say every eye shall see Him. My question for clarification is this. You said that the verse was referring the second coming of Christ, but at the second coming of Christ, but not all that were dead the evil dead will be raised up. So really not every eye will see Him, but rather isn’t it referring to the third coming of Christ where or rather after the millennium where Satan takes his forces to marshal the city of Jerusalem?

Pastor Doug: No I think not. And the reason is the first part of the verse Debbie says, “Behold He comes in the clouds.” And Jesus always refers to His next coming as the coming in the clouds. And I think when He says every eye will see Him it is understood that it is every eye of those that are alive in the world. And I don’t think it is a stretch in the text to assume it is those that still have eyes in their head. But, the dead in the ground He is not saying that those eyes will see Him. But, all of the eyes that are alive and operating are going to see Him.

Debbie: Okay so therefore couldn’t the text be applying to those who are alive at the third coming, but you are saying just that because it says the clouds it is specifically referring to the second coming?

Pastor Doug: Well there are so many other references in the Bible in Matthew 24 and a number of other verses where it talks about—let me see here. I am looking back in Revelation again—there are several other passages—Mark 13: 26 “And they will see the son of man coming in the clouds with power and great glory.” So it is taking about His next coming. They will see Him coming in the clouds it is almost identical to Revelation and the next one is Mark 13: 26. Do you see what I am saying?

Debbie: Right okay. Okay alright, but what you are saying is…

Pastor Doug: One more “There shall appear the sign of the son of man in heaven and then shall all the tribes of the earth mourn and they shall see the son of man coming in the clouds with power and great glory.” And this is Matthew 24: 30 and it is very definitely talking about the next return if you read the context.

Debbie: Okay. Just one more clarification you said that Jesus will be circling the earth at His second coming and what Bible verses do we have for that?

Pastor Doug: Good question. You know I don’t have one I can give you for that other than common sense. The earth rotates and any body unless it is in a geocentric orbit like a satellite; will be seen to circle. And it does tell us that He is coming and there are references that He is coming from the east and we have the vision of Elijah when the cloud came. An so it is a natural thing if He is coming from the east and the earth is turning you go around in a circle of the earth before He went back to heaven. It does tell us and I am thinking here as I am speaking in Matthew 24 it tells us he’ll send His angels to the four corners of the earth. So as Christ let’s suppose just sweeps around the equator for sake of an argument; He is going to have His angels fanning out and gathering His elect and bringing them back to the main procession. Of course we are sort of talking about the logistics of His parade. And I am just hoping I am in that parade I don’t care how He does it. Do you know what I mean?

Debbie: Okay alright.

[Laughter]

Pastor Doug: Let us all pray that we are there.

Pastor Dick: Amen.

Debbie: Alright. Thank you very much.

Pastor Doug: Alright. God bless Debbie.

Pastor Dick: Debbie thanks for the cal we really appreciate it. Pastor Doug I don’t think we have time for another call we have less than two minutes. About a minute and thirty seconds I believe.

Pastor Doug: No we don’t want to—sometimes we take a question and we almost have to insult the person to answer it.

Pastor Dick: That’s right.

Pastor Doug: We have to drop them so quickly, but maybe just this is a good time to remind our friends that “Amazing Facts” that we have a radio program that can be heard in many parts of the world. I saw a radio 4 yesterday who broadcasts this program in Europe and our friends from 3ABN who broadcast it on their satellite network and I want to thank them. In addition we have TV programs that can be seen weekly just about anywhere in the world to the Middle East, Africa, the Orient, Australia and Europe. If you just go to the website; “Amazing Facts dot org” you’ll see a radio and TV log and why don’t you send a link to your friends and say hey do you want to see a great website for Bible studies? We give free Bible studies and matter of fact you can go to the “Bible University dot com” website and you can enroll. Especially if you want to know more about Bible Prophecy in this very interesting day you can take a visit there to “Bible University”. I could go on, but we’ve got “Prophecy Code dot com” “Final Event dot com” “05 Revive dot com” “Revival” website. I think “Amazing Facts” probably had about 20 websites. God bless you friends.

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