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Pastor Scott Markle

Independent Fundamental Baptist
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Everything posted by Pastor Scott Markle

  1. I can agree with that portion of your post which I have emboldened, as long as we are talking about that which I have presented as "inspirational authority," not "inspirational origin." Thus I can and DO indeed ascribe "inspirational authority" to the King James translation; and I do indeed hold it as the very Word of God in English for me to follow.
  2. When Hezekiah quoted Solomon's writings and put together part of the book of Proverbs - Hezekiah was a holy man of God who was being moved by the Holy Spirit of God in precisely the manner that 2 Peter 1:21 presents. Thus Hezekiah was not simply copying Scripture; rather, he himself was being directly inspired by the Holy Spirit to arrange Scripture. When any of the Greek-speaking and Greek-writing New Testament writers quoted the Hebrew of the Hebrew Old Testament Scriptures - they were holy men of God who were being moved by the Holy Spirit of God in precisely the manner that 2 Peter 1:21 presents. Thus they were not simply copying and translating Old Testament Scripture into Greek; rather, they themselves were being directly inspired by the Holy Spirit to formulate the New Testament Scriptures. When Luke quoted Paul's Hebrew speeches and testimony in the book of Acts, originally spoken in Hebrew, but quoted in Greek - Luke was a holy man of God who was being moved by the Holy Spirit of God in precisely the manner that 2 Peter 1:21 presents. Luke was not simply copying and translating speeches from Hebrew into Greek; rather, Luke himself was being directly inspired by the Holy Spirit to formulate a portion of the New Testament Scriptures. Actually, this begs the question (just as I have presented in my earlier posting) - Is it Biblically accurate to claim that the King James translators were moved by the Holy Spirit of God in precisely the manner that 2 Peter 1:21 presents? Or to put it another way - Is it Biblically accurate to claim that the King James translators were moved by the Holy Spirit of God to translate the Holy Scriptures into English in precisely the same manner that the various Old Testament penmen and New Testament penmen were moved by the Holy Spirit of God to originally author and arrange the Holy Scriptures as per 2 Peter 1:21? Furthermore, it may be asked - Is it Biblically accurate to claim that this same process of inspiration as per 2 Peter 1:21 has also occurred with other translations into English and/or that this same process of inspiration as per 2 Peter 1:21 has occurred with translations into other languages than English? (Note: If you answer "yes" to these questions, then by definition you DO hold to a "re-inspirational" viewpoint of translation.) The question here is NOT about what the Lord our God, the Almighty God, is able to do; rather, the question is about what the Lord our God has revealed concerning what He HAS done in this matter. If anyone claims a teaching that is not accurate to what God's Word itself reveals as truth, then that teaching is false, even if that teaching sounds really good. Indeed, the Lord our God, the Almighty God, HAS presented such a promise in His Word. For this reason I myself very firmly hold to the Biblical doctrines of both Biblical inspiration and Biblical preservation. Yeah, I hold very firmly to the doctrine of "JOT AND TITTLE" preservation for EVERY generation of God's people on the earth. However, as even you yourself have presented above, "JOT AND TITTLE" preservation means "every word and every punctuation mark IN THE ORIGINAL." By definition, the very moment that an individual translates from the original language to ANY other language, the jots and tittles (the words, letters, and punctuation marks) CHANGE. Thus by definition, NO translation actually fulfills the precise definition of "JOT AND TITTLE" preservation. (Note: If an individual holds only to "CONCEPT" preservation, then that individual might have room to claim that a translation could fulfill the definition of such preservation.) Actually, by definition "JOT AND TITTLE" preservation is all about copying under the providential work of God to preserve every "jot and tittle" of His original Word from generation to generation unto the present and into the future. Thus He most certainly did NOT say that His Word was only preserved until copied, since copying is built into the very definition of Biblical preservation. Yet the Biblical doctrine of "jot and tittle" preservation does NOT indicate that ALL copying and copies would be providentially protected with "jot and tittle" accuracy. This means that deceivers CAN create copies with alterations to teach falsehood, and that there CAN be an accumulation of both truly preserved and falsely altered copies over time in competition with one another (such as exists, I believe, in our present day). On the other hand, as I have presented above, by definition "JOT AND TITTLE" preservation is a matter for the ORIGINAL words, letter, and punctuation. By definition "JOT AND TITTLE" preservation CANNOT carry to a translation, since translation by definition requires changes in the "jots and tittles." For example - (Note: I wanted to use actual Greek letters for this, but could not get them to paste over) "agape" (employing the actual Greek letters) and "love" do NOT have the same "jots and tittles." Nor would this be the case if we employed the English word "charity" in place of the English word "love." Greek letters are NOT the same as English letters. The number of letters in a given Greek word are NOT necessarily the same as the number of letters in the English word to which the Greek word is translated, and the same would hold with Hebrew words. Even so, when the Lord our God promised to preserve His Word with "JOT AND TITTLE" preservation, He by definition did NOT include the work of translation within the doctrine of "jot and tittle" preservation. Now, does this mean that I do not view the King James translation has retaining any aspect of inspiration? No. Rather, I believe that the Biblical doctrine of inspiration is BOTH about "inspirational origin" (given by) and "inspirational authority" (of God). I believe that ONLY the original writings can claim "inspirational origin," but that ANY copy that is providentially preserved and protected ("jot and tittle" preserved) and ANY translation that is accurately translated from that which has been providentially preserved retains "inspirational authority" (is IN TRUTH the very Word OF GOD in whatever language). However, I most certainly do NOT hold that 2 Peter 1:21 (which clearly speaks in the past tense) can be applied to the process of copying and translating, but ONLY can be applied to the original work of the Holy Spirit in the original formulation of the Holy Scriptures (both in its original writing and original arranging).
  3. Two significant New Testament passages concerning inspiration are the following: 2 Timothy 3:16 - "All scripture is given by inspiration of God." 2 Peter 1:21 - "For the prophecy came not in old time by the will of man: but holy men of God spake as they were moved by the Holy Ghost." Concerning the application of these passages in relation to the King James translation, we might consider whether the following is Biblically legitimate to claim: 1. All the King James translation is translated (given) by inspiration of God. 2. The King James translation came not in 1611 by the will of man, but holy men of God translated as they were moved by the Holy Ghost. Concerning other English translations, we might consider whether the following is Biblically legitimate to claim: 1. All the Geneva translation is translated (given) by inspiration of God. 2. The Geneva translation came not in past time by the will of man, but holy men of God translated as they were moved by the Holy Ghost. Or, 1. All the New International translation is translated (given) by inspiration of God. 2. The New International translation came not in past time by the will of man, but holy men of God translated as they were moved by the Holy Ghost. (Note: In this posting I am NOT revealing my own position concerning these considerations; rather, I am presenting these considerations in order to challenge precise understanding within doctrinal positioning.)
  4. Indeed, let us claim that EVERYTHING which Christ said matters; but then let us ignore an entire half of the verse. If everything that Christ said really mattered, then it would be necessary to consider the ENTIRE sentence of the verse, and to demonstrate the grammatical and contextual relationship of the second half of the verse to the first half of the verse.
  5. Brother Bruce, As you can see, whatever the problem was now seems to have fixed itself. And thank you for praying for me.
  6. I do apologize. Lately, for a week or more now, I have not been able to access Online Baptist at my home. I am now at someone else's house to read through what I have missed. Hard to stay up to date at the moment because of this, and even harder to engage in a lengthy discussion.
  7. From my personal devotional reading today: Psalm 5:1-12 - "Give ear to my words, O LORD, consider my meditation. Hearken unto the voice of my cry, my King, and my God: for unto thee will I pray. My voice shalt thou hear in the morning, O LORD; in the morning will I direct my prayer unto thee, and will look up. For thou art not a God that hath pleasure in wickedness: neither shall evil dwell with thee. The foolish shall not stand in thy sight: thou hatest all workers of iniquity. Thou shalt destroy them that speak leasing: the LORD will abhor the bloody and deceitful man. But as for me, I will come into thy house in the multitude of thy mercy: and in thy fear will I worship toward thy holy temple. Lead me, O LORD, in thy righteousness because of mine enemies; make thy way straight before my face. For there is no faithfulness in their mouth; their inward part is very wickedness; their throat is an open sepulchre; they flatter with their tongue. Destroy thou them, O God; let them fall by their own counsels; cast them out in the multitude of their transgressions; for they have rebelled against thee. But let all those that put their trust in thee rejoice: let them ever shout for joy, because thou defendest them: let them also that love thy name be joyful in thee. For thou, LORD, wilt bless the righteous; with favour wilt thou compass him as with a shield." (Note: The whole issue herein concerns those who have pleasure in wickedness in contrast to those walk in righteousness. Still seems that Mr. Bonhoeffer got it wrong.)
  8. Indeed, I remember; and I take notice that throughout His ministry of healing and helps, one great truth is emphasized - "According to your faith be it unto you." (NOT - according to your suffering be it unto you) Well, this one I cannot remember - because it is not true. Matthew 11:20-24 - "Then began he to upbraid the cities wherein most of his mighty works were done, because they repented not: Woe unto thee, Chorazin! Woe unto thee, Bethsaida! For if the mighty works, which were done in you, had been done in Tyre and Sidon, they would have repented long ago in sackcloth and ashes. But I say unto you, It shall be more tolerable for Tyre and Sidon at the day of judgment, than for you. And thou, Capernaum, which art exalted unto heaven, shalt be brought down to hell: for if the mighty works, which have been done in thee, had been done in Sodom, it would have remained until this day. But I say unto you, That it shall be more tolerable for the land of Sodom in the day of judgment, than for thee." Furthermore, our Lord Jesus Christ did not come down hard on the religious people of his day because they spent "most of their time criticizing others." Rather, he came down hard on them because they were self-righteous hypocrites, who trusted in their own "so-called" righteousness, refused to acknowledge their own sinfulness, and thus rejected their need for Him as their personal Savior from sin.
  9. Indeed, I remember. Mark 12:41-44 - "And Jesus sat over against the treasury, and beheld how the people cast money into the treasury: and many that were rich cast in much. And there came a certain poor widow, and she threw in two mites, which make a farthing. And he called unto him his disciples, and saith unto them, Verily I say unto you, That this poor widow hath cast more in, than all they which have cast into the treasury: for all they did cast in of their abundance; but she of her want did cast in all that she had, even all her living." Luke 21:1-4 - "And he looked up, and saw the rich men casting their gifts into the treasury. And he saw also a certain poor widow casting in thither two mites. And he said, Of a truth I say unto you, that this poor widow hath cast in more than they all: for all these have of their abundance cast in unto the offerings of God: but she of her penury hath cast in all the living that she had." (Note: This whole account is about what individual's were doing and about the character of what they were doing - casting money into the treasury of the temple. The widow was not distinguished from the others because she had suffered more than they had. Rather, she was distinguished from the others because of the manner of her giving in comparison to their manner of giving (which is something they were all doing). She was distinguished because they were giving out of their abundance, whereas she was giving ALL that she had. By this means our Lord emphasized in the matter of giving, not the greatness of the amount, but the greatness of the percentage. Yet giving itself is something that is done or not done. Certainly the widow had suffered much; but if she had not given anything, her suffering would not have been relevant to this case. It was not how much she gave in relation to how much she suffered that mattered. Rather, it was how much she gave in relation to how much she owned that mattered.)
  10. Indeed, I remember Matthew. Matthew 9:9-13 - "And as Jesus passed forth from thence, he saw a man, named Matthew, sitting at the receipt of custom: and he saith unto him, Follow me. And he arose, and followed him. And it came to pass, as Jesus sat at meat in the house, behold, many publicans and sinners came and sat down with him and his disciples. And when the Pharisees saw it, they said unto his disciples, Why eateth your Master with publicans and sinners? But when Jesus heard that, he said unto them, They that be whole need not a physician, but they that are sick. But go ye and learn what that meaneth, I will have mercy, and not sacrifice: for I am not come to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance." Mark 2:13-17 - "And he went forth again by the sea side; and all the multitude resorted unto him, and he taught them. And as he passed by, he saw Levi the son of Alphaeus sitting at the receipt of custom, and said unto him, Follow me. And he arose and followed him. And it came to pass, that, as Jesus sat at meat in his house, many publicans and sinners sat also together with Jesus and his disciples: for there were many, and they followed him. And when the scribes and Pharisees saw him eat with publicans and sinners, they said unto his disciples, How is it that he eateth and drinketh with publicans and sinners? When Jesus heard it, he saith unto them, They that are whole have no need of the physician, but they that are sick: I came not to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance." Luke 5:27-32 - "And after these things he went forth, and saw a publican, named Levi, sitting at the receipt of custom: and he said unto him, Follow me. And he left all, rose up, and followed him. And Levi made him a great feast in his own house: and there was a great company of publicans and of others that sat down with them. But their scribes and Pharisees murmured against his disciples, saying, Why do ye eat and drink with publicans and sinners? And Jesus answering said unto them, They that are whole need not a physician; but they that are sick. I came not to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance." (Note: Concerning Matthew there does not seem to be single thing mentioned about anything that he had suffered, but only about what he did - At Christ's call he left all, followed Christ, and made a great feast for Christ in his own house. Concerning the other publicans and sinners who gathered to this feast, there also does not seem to be a single thing mentioned about anything that they had suffered, but only about what they did - They were sinners; They sat with Christ and His disciples; They followed Christ. In fact, Christ's defense against the accusation of the Pharisees is not what individuals suffer, but is about what individuals choose to do. Our Lord did not say that He came to call sufferers to comfort. Rather, He said that He came to call sinners to repentance. They were sinners because they had committed sin (things that they had done or not done); He called them to repentance (something they needed to do in order to deal with their sinfulness).)
  11. Indeed, I remember Zacchaeus. Luke 19:1-10 - "And Jesus entered and passed through Jericho. And, behold, there was a man named Zacchaeus, which was the chief among the publicans, and he was rich. And he sought to see Jesus who he was; and could not for the press, because he was little of stature. And he ran before, and climbed up into a sycomore tree to see him: for he was to pass that way. And when Jesus came to the place, he looked up, and saw him, and said unto him, Zacchaeus, make haste, and come down; for to day I must abide at thy house. And he made haste, and came down, and received him joyfully. And when they saw it, they all murmured, saying, That he was gone to be guest with a man that is a sinner. And Zacchaeus stood, and said unto the Lord; Behold, Lord, the half of my goods I give to the poor; and if I have taken any thing from any man by false accusation, I restore him fourfold. And Jesus said unto him, This day is salvation come to this house, forsomuch as he also is a son of Abraham. For the Son of man is come to seek and to save that which was lost." (Note: Again there does not seem to be a single word about what Zacchaeus suffered, but only about what Zacchaeus DID - Sought to see Jesus, Climbed the sycomore tree to see Jesus, Received Jesus into his house joyfully, Committed to give half of his good to the poor, Committed to restore fourfold unto anyone he had cheated.)
  12. Indeed, I remember. John 4:1-30 - "Then cometh he to a city of Samaria, which is called Sychar, near to the parcel of ground that Jacob gave to his son Joseph. Now Jacob’s well was there. Jesus therefore, being wearied with his journey, sat thus on the well: and it was about the sixth hour. There cometh a woman of Samaria to draw water: Jesus saith unto her, Give me to drink. (For his disciples were gone away unto the city to buy meat.) Then saith the woman of Samaria unto him, How is it that thou, being a Jew, askest drink of me, which am a woman of Samaria? For the Jews have no dealings with the Samaritans. Jesus answered and said unto her, If thou knewest the gift of God, and who it is that saith to thee, Give me to drink; thou wouldest have asked of him, and he would have given thee living water. The woman saith unto him, Sir, thou hast nothing to draw with, and the well is deep: from whence then hast thou that living water? Art thou greater than our father Jacob, which gave us the well, and drank thereof himself, and his children, and his cattle? Jesus answered and said unto her, Whosoever drinketh of this water shall thirst again: but whosoever drinketh of the water that I shall give him shall never thirst; but the water that I shall give him shall be in him a well of water springing up into everlasting life. The woman saith unto him, Sir, give me this water, that I thirst not, neither come hither to draw. Jesus saith unto her, Go, call thy husband, and come hither. The woman answered and said, I have no husband. Jesus said unto her, Thou hast well said, I have no husband: for thou hast had five husbands; and he whom thou now hast is not thy husband: in that saidst thou truly. The woman saith unto him, Sir, I perceive that thou art a prophet. Our fathers worshipped in this mountain; and ye say, that in Jerusalem is the place where men ought to worship. Jesus saith unto her, Woman, believe me, the hour cometh, when ye shall neither in this mountain, nor yet at Jerusalem, worship the Father. Ye worship ye know not what: we know what we worship: for salvation is of the Jews. But the hour cometh, and now is, when the true worshippers shall worship the Father in spirit and in truth: for the Father seeketh such to worship him. God is a Spirit: and they that worship him must worship him in spirit and in truth. The woman saith unto him, I know that Messias cometh, which is called Christ: when he is come, he will tell us all things. Jesus saith unto her, I that speak unto thee am he. And upon this came his disciples, and marvelled that he talked with the woman: yet no man said, What seekest thou? or, Why talkest thou with her? The woman then left her waterpot, and went her way into the city, and saith to the men, Come, see a man, which told me all things that ever I did: is not this the Christ? Then they went out of the city, and came unto him." (Note: There does not seem to be any direct reference in this context toward anyone's amount of suffering. Rather, the Lord confronted this woman concerning her sin of fornication ("He whom thou now hast is not thy husband") and of her need to trust in Him as her Savior. In fact, when this woman gave testimony to the men of the city concerning her encounter with Jesus the Christ, she herself gave the report, "Come, see a man, which told me all things that ever I DID." She did not indicate that Jesus the Christ focused at all upon all things ever she had suffered, only on all things ever she had done or not done.)
  13. Indeed, I remember. John 8:1-11 - "Jesus went unto the mount of Olives. And early in the morning he came again into the temple, and all the people came unto him; and he sat down, and taught them. And the scribes and Pharisees brought unto him a woman taken in adultery; and when they had set her in the midst, They say unto him, Master, this woman was taken in adultery, in the very act. Now Moses in the law commanded us, that such should be stoned: but what sayest thou? This they said, tempting him, that they might have to accuse him. But Jesus stooped down, and with his finger wrote on the ground, as though he heard them not. So when they continued asking him, he lifted up himself, and said unto them, He that is without sin among you, let him first cast a stone at her. And again he stooped down, and wrote on the ground. And they which heard it, being convicted by their own conscience, went out one by one, beginning at the eldest, even unto the last: and Jesus was left alone, and the woman standing in the midst. When Jesus had lifted up himself, and saw none but the woman, he said unto her, Woman, where are those thine accusers? hath no man condemned thee? She said, No man, Lord. And Jesus said unto her, Neither do I condemn thee: go, and sin no more." (Note: Does not seem to be a single reference in this passage to anyone's suffering, but only to different individual's sins, what they had or had not done. Thus it would appear that the matter of how much suffering an individual endured is not really relevant to this account. Rather, the matter of doing or not doing sin is what is relevant to this account.)
  14. Psalm 26:4-5 - "I have not sat with vain persons, neither will I go in with dissemblers. I have hated the congregation of evil doers; and will not sit with the wicked." Psalm 101:3-8 - "I will set no wicked thing before mine eyes: I hate the work of them that turn aside; it shall not cleave to me. A froward heart shall depart from me: I will not know a wicked person. Whoso privily slandereth his neighbour, him will I cut off: him that hath an high look and a proud heart will not I suffer. Mine eyes shall be upon the faithful of the land, that they may dwell with me: he that walketh in a perfect way, he shall serve me. He that worketh deceit shall not dwell within my house: he that telleth lies shall not tarry in my sight. I will early destroy all the wicked of the land; that I may cut off all wicked doers from the city of the LORD." 1 Timothy 6:3-5 - "If any man teach otherwise, and consent not to wholesome words, even the words of our Lord Jesus Christ, and to the doctrine which is according to godliness; he is proud, knowing nothing, but doting about questions and strifes of words, whereof cometh envy, strife, railings, evil surmisings, perverse disputings of men of corrupt minds, and destitute of the truth, supposing that gain is godliness: from such withdraw thyself." 2 Timothy 3:1-5 - "This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come. For men shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, without natural affection, trucebreakers, false accusers, incontinent, fierce, despisers of those that are good, traitors, heady, highminded, lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God; Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from such turn away." (Note: God's Word does not seem to agree with Bonhoeffer's word. So, which will we choose to follow? As for me, I will follow God's Word as the very truth, and will disregard Bonhoeffer's word as a falsehood against the truth.)
  15. Ok, with that I can express more full agreement. Thank you Brother Hugh for clearing up the "confusion."
  16. Brother Totoosart, What Brother Hugh said is not precisely accurate. The apostle Peter under the inspiration of God the Holy Spirit stated the following in 2 Peter 3:15-16 -- "And account that the longsuffering of our Lord is salvation; even as our beloved brother Paul also according to the wisdom given unto him hath written unto you; as also in all his epistles, speaking in them of these things; in which are some things hard to be understood, which they that are unlearned and unstable wrest, as they do also the other scriptures, unto their own destruction." Some things in God's Holy Word are easier for understanding, but other things are harder for understanding. Furthermore, Proverbs 1:7 states -- "The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge: but fools despise wisdom and instruction." Even so, those who walk in the fear of the Lord have the foundation upon which to grow in their understanding of God's wisdom from God's Holy Word. However, those who will not choose the fear of the Lord (as per Proverbs 1:29-30) will not be able to grasp God's wisdom from God's Holy Word. Indeed, being wise in their own conceits, they will remain fools and will ever grow deeper in the darkness and blindness of their foolishness. Finally, in John 8:31-32 we read, "Then said Jesus to those Jews which believed on him, If ye continue in my word, then are ye my disciples indeed; and ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free." Growth in the truth and wisdom of God's Holy Word comes only to those who continue in the Word with diligent study, daily mediation, AND dedicated obedience. Without faithful obedience there will not be spiritual growth of maturity or understanding. Consider the following passages: James 1:21-25 - "Wherefore lay apart all filthiness and superfluity of naughtiness, and receive with meekness the engrafted word, which is able to save your souls. But be ye doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving your own selves. For if any be a hearer of the word, and not a doer, he is like unto a man beholding his natural face in a glass: for he beholdeth himself, and goeth his way, and straightway forgetteth what manner of man he was. But whoso looketh into the perfect law of liberty, and continueth therein, he being not a forgetful hearer, but a doer of the work, this man shall be blessed in his deed." Hebrews 5:12-14 - "For when for the time ye ought to be teachers, ye have need that one teach you again which be the first principles of the oracles of God; and are become such as have need of milk, and not of strong meat. For every one that useth milk is unskilful in the word of righteousness: for he is a babe. But strong meat belongeth to them that are of full age, even those who by reason of use have their senses exercised to discern both good and evil." In Proverbs 8:32-36 the personified Wisdom of God's Word states - "Now therefore hearken unto me, O ye children: for blessed are they that keep my ways. Hear instruction, and be wise, and refuse it not. Blessed is the man that heareth me, watching daily at my gates, waiting at the posts of my doors. For whoso findeth me findeth life, and shall obtain favour of the LORD. But he that sinneth against me wrongeth his own soul: all they that hate me love death."
  17. Hmmm. Sorry that I presented so much. I just wanted to provide a thorough presentation of my reasoning, not just my "answer." Actually, not precisely correct. I admit that this involves a RESURRECTION, but not that it is a rapture (catching up). Brother Mike, In your belief system, what or who is the "withholder" in 2 Thessalonians 2:6-7; and what does it mean for this "withholder" to be "taken out of the way"?
  18. In my previous posting, I presented the possibility that the harvest-event as reported in Revelation 14:14-16 is the same harvest-event as is reported in Revelation 14:17-20, and presented the possible Biblical grounds for such a conclusion -- However, a closer consideration of the immediate context around Revelation 14:14-20 may lead us (and has led me) to a different viewpoint concerning the harvest event of Revelation 14:14-16. In the first place, let us consider whether a prophetic harvest-event can be viewed Biblically as a positive harvest of deliverance/blessing. Clearly the character of the prophetic harvest in Revelation 14:17-20 is a negative harvest of judgment, as per verse 19 - "And the angel thrust in his sickle into the earth, and gathered the vine of the earth, and cast it into the great winepress of the wrath of God." This negative character of judgment for a prophetic harvest is supported Biblically through Joel 3:9-17, as per verse 13 - "Put ye in the sickle, for the harvest is ripe: come, get you down; for the press is full, the fats overflow; for their wickedness is great." (Note: I myself would contend that Joel 3:9-17 is speaking concerning the same prophetic event as Revelation 14:17-20.) However, Mark 4:26-29 seems to present a prophetic harvest (in relation to the kingdom of God) from a more positive perspective - "And he said, So is the kingdom of God, as if a man should cast seed into the ground; and should sleep, and rise night and day, and the seed should spring and grow up, he knoweth not how. For the earth bringeth forth fruit of herself; first the blade, then the ear, after that the full corn in the ear. But when the fruit is brought forth, immediately he putteth in the sickle, because the harvest is come." So then, is it possible that Biblically a prophetic harvest may be presented as either negative unto judgment or positive unto blessing, depending on the context? Actually, Matthew 13:24-30 seems to present a prophetic harvest-event wherein both the negative and the positive component are present in the same exact event - "Another parable put he forth unto them, saying, The kingdom of heaven is likened unto a man which sowed good seed in his field: but while men slept, his enemy came and sowed tares among the wheat, and went his way. But when the blade was sprung up, and brought forth fruit, then appeared the tares also. So the servants of the householder came and said unto him, Sir, didst not thou sow good seed in thy field? From whence then hath it tares? He said unto them, An enemy hath done this. The servants said unto him, Wilt thou then that we go and gather them up? But he said, Nay; lest while ye gather up the tares, ye root up also the wheat with them. Let both grow together until the harvest: and in the time of harvest I will say to the reapers, Gather ye together first the tares, and bind them in bundles to burn them: but gather the wheat into my barn." Furthermore, in Matthew 13:36-43 our Lord Jesus Christ gave His own explanation for this parable - "Then Jesus sent the multitude away, and went into the house: and his disciples came unto him, saying, Declare unto us the parable of the tares of the field. He answered and said unto them, He that soweth the good seed is the Son of man; the field is the world; the good seed are the children of the kingdom; but the tares are the children of the wicked one; the enemy that sowed them is the devil; the harvest is the end of the world; and the reapers are the angels. As therefore the tares are gathered and burned in the fire; so shall it be in the end of this world. The Son of man shall send forth his angels, and they shall gather out of his kingdom all things that offend, and them which do iniquity; and shall cast them into a furnace of fire: there shall be wailing and gnashing of teeth. Then shall the righteous shine forth as the sun in the kingdom of their Father. Who hath ears to hear, let him hear." So then, if it is possible (as it seems) that Biblically a prophetic harvest may be presented as either negative unto judgment or positive unto blessing, depending on the immediate context, which character is the harvest-event of Revelation 14:14-16 in accord with its immediate context? I myself would contend that contextually Revelation 14:9-20 is to be viewed a single contextual unit. The reference to "the wine of the wrath of God" in verse 10 seems to correspond with the reference to "the great winepress of the wrath of God" in verse 19. As such, this correspondence would seem to join the beginning and ending of this context, and thus to encompass the passage as a single contextual unit. Even so, I would contend that the contextual unit of Revelation 14:9-20 can be divided into four parts, as follows: 1. The final judgment for those who worship the beast. (Revelation 14:9-11) 2. The final blessing for those who believe on Jesus the Christ. (Revelation 14:12-13) 3. ???The prophetic harvest under question. (Revelation 14:14-16) 4. The negative prophetic harvest unto judgment. (Revelation 14:17-20) Indeed, since the beginning part and the ending part of this contextual seem to carry a specific correspondence, I would further contend that the four parts of this context are to be viewed in a "chiastic" formulation (wherein the first part corresponds with the last, and the two middle parts correspond with each other), as follows: 1. The final judgment for those who worship the beast. (Revelation 14:9-11) 2. The final blessing for those who believe on Jesus the Christ. (Revelation 14:12-13) 3. ???The prophetic harvest under question. (Revelation 14:14-16) 4. The negative prophetic harvest unto judgment. (Revelation 14:17-20) Now, if we recognize this "chiastic" formulation for this contextual unit, then we would recognize that the prophetic harvest-event from Revelation 14:14-16 is to be viewed as corresponding with the final blessing for those who believe on Jesus the Christ from Revelation 14:12-13. Even so, from this contextual correspondence we would be led to view the prophetic harvest-event from Revelation 14:14-16 as a positive harvest of blessing just as the positive presentation of the final blessing for those who believe on Jesus the Christ in Revelation 14:12-13. So then, our "chiastic" layout for this contextual unit would now be as follows: 1. The final judgment for those who worship the beast. (Revelation 14:9-11) 2. The final blessing for those who believe on Jesus the Christ. (Revelation 14:12-13) 3. The positive prophetic harvest unto blessing. (Revelation 14:14-16) 4. The negative prophetic harvest unto judgment. (Revelation 14:17-20) Yet what be the timing for this positive harvest unto blessing from Revelation 14:14-16? Since I am viewing the section of Revelation 14:9-11 as corresponding with Revelation 14:17-20, and since I am viewing these two sections as encompassing the entire context, I would contend that the prophetic events of Revelation 14:12-16 occur at the same timing as the prophetic events of Revelation 14:9-11, 17-20. Furthermore, since I am viewing the prophet events of Revelation 14:9-11, 17-20 as corresponding with the prophetic event of Revelation 19:15, 17-21, I would contend that the prophetic events of Revelation 14:9-20 as a whole, both negative and positive, occur at the "Revelation-Coming of Christ," as per Revelation 19:11-21. Indeed, this would mean that both the positive harvest of blessing from Revelation 14:14-16 and the negative harvest of judgment from Revelation 15:17-20, both the positive and negative component, occur within the same prophetic event, which would correspond quite well with our Lord's teaching from Matthew 13:24-30, 37-43. However, one question remains. I have concluded that the character of the prophetic harvest-event from Revelation 14:14-16 is a positive character unto blessing. I have concluded that the timing for the prophetic harvest-event from Revelation 14:14-16 is the same as the timing for that of Revelation 14:17-20, that is -- the timing of the "Revelation-Coming of Christ." Yet what is the definition of the prophetic harvest-event from Revelation 14:14-16? Who will be "harvested" in this positive harvest-event unto blessing? Since contextually the harvest-event from Revelation 14:14-16 seems to correspond with the final blessing for those who believe in Jesus the Christ in Revelation 14:12-13, I would contend that this positive harvest is a harvest of believers unto blessing. Furthermore, since I have concluded that this positive harvest-event occurs at the "Revelation-Coming of Christ," I would contend that it corresponds with Revelation 20:4-5 - "And I saw thrones, and they sat upon them, and judgment was given unto them: and I saw the souls of them that were beheaded for the witness of Jesus, and for the word of God, and which had not worshipped the beast, neither his image, neither had received his mark upon their foreheads, or in their hands; and they lived and reigned with Christ a thousand years. But the rest of the dead lived not again until the thousand years were finished. This is the first resurrection." Indeed, I would contend that the prophetic harvest from Revelation 14:14-16 is a "harvest" of believers specifically from the seven year Tribulation Period unto the blessing of the thousand year reign of Christ upon the earth. This "harvest" of believers from the seven year Tribulation Period could be viewed as having two elements - 1. The resurrection of those believers who died/were killed during the seven year Tribulation Period. 2. The rewarding of those believers who lived through the seven year Tribulation Period.
  19. Brother Mike, Having completed the process of my extended answer concerning 2 Thessalonians 1 - 2, I am now ready to engage your question concerning Revelation 14:14-16 - "And I looked, and behold a white cloud, and upon the cloud one sat like unto the Son of man, having on his head a golden crown, and in his hand a sharp sickle. And another angel came out of the temple, crying with a loud voice to him that sat on the cloud, thrust in thy sickle, and reap: for the time is come for thee to reap; for the harvest of the earth is ripe. And he that sat on the cloud thrust in his sickle on the earth; and the earth was reaped." Herein we find a report concerning a prophetic harvest-event. The description for the "Harvester" in this portion would seem to be Lord Jesus Christ Himself. The place of this harvest-event is a "harvest of the earth." The reason and timing for this harvest-event, as provided in the passage itself, is because "the harvest of the earth is ripe." However, the information of this passage does not seem to reveal whether this harvest-event is a negative event of judgment or a positive event of deliverance/blessing. Now, that which follows in the context of Revelation 14:17-20 also presents a report concerning a prophetic harvest-event - "And another angel came out of the temple which is in heaven, he also having a sharp sickle. And another angel came out from the altar, which had power over fire; and cried with a loud voice to him that had the sharp sickle, saying, Thrust in thy sharp sickle, and gather the clusters of the vine of the earth; for her grapes are fully ripe. And the angel thrust in is sickle into the earth, and gathered the vine of the earth, and cast it into the great winepress of the wrath of God. And the winepress was trodden without the city, and blood came out of the winepress, even unto the horse bridles, by the space of a thousand and six hundred furlongs." Herein this harvest-event seems clearly to be a negative event of judgment, for herein the "clusters of the vine of the earth" are cast "into the great winepress of the wrath of God." The "harvester" in this passage is described as an angel, rather than as "the Son of man" from the previous passage. The place of this harvest-event is "the vine of the earth." The reason and timing for this harvest-event, as provided in the passage itself, is because the grapes of the earth-vine "are fully ripe." The result of this harvest-event is that the "winepress of the wrath of God" is trodden "without [outside] the city [most likely a reference to Jerusalem]," and blood comes out of that winepress of God's wrath, "even unto the horse bridles," for a space of 1600 furlongs. From these two reports we find some similarities and some differences. The first similarity is that both report a prophetic harvest-event by means of a sickle. The second similarity is that both report a prophetic harvest-event of the earth, when the earth/vine of the earth is fully ripe. The first difference is that in the first report One like "the Son of man" is doing the harvesting, whereas in the second report an angel is doing the harvesting. The second difference is the first report does not specifically reveal whether the harvest-event is a negative harvest of judgment or a positive harvest of blessing, whereas the second report clearly reveals that the harvest-event is a negative harvest of judgment within "the winepress of the wrath of God." Thus a question is raised - Do the similarities of these two reports, being within the same full context, indicate that they are reporting about the same prophetic harvest-event; or do the differences of these two reports, along with the grammatical transition from one report to the other ("And another angel came out of the temple . . ."), indicate that they are reporting about different prophetic harvest-events? Now, the winepress of God's wrath is referenced one other time within the Book of the Revelation. At the "Revelation-Coming of Christ" as reported in Revelation 19:11-16, verse 15 states, "And out of his mouth goeth a sharp sword, that with it should smite the nations: and he shall rule them with a rod of iron: and he treadeth the winepress of the fierceness and wrath of Almighty God." Even so, I would contend that Revelation 14:17-20 & Revelation 19:11-16 are speaking concerning the same prophetic event, such that the negative harvest of judgment from Revelation 14:17-20 will occur specifically at the "Revelation-Coming of Christ." The harvesting of "the clusters of the vine of the earth" to be cast "into the the great winepress of the wrath of God" from Revelation 14:18-19 seems to correspond with our Lord Jesus Christ's smiting of the nations and treading "the winepress of the fierceness and wrath of Almighty God" from Revelation 19:15. Furthermore, the report of Revelation 14:20 ("And the winepress was trodden without the city, and blood came out of the winepress, even unto the horse bridles, by the space of a thousand and six hundred furlongs.") seems to correspond quite well with the report of Revelation 19:17-21 - "And I saw an angel standing in the sun; and he cried with a loud voice, saying to all the fowls that fly in the midst of heaven, Come and gather yourselves together unto the supper of the great God; that ye may eat the flesh of kings, and the flesh of captains, and the flesh of mighty men, and the flesh of horses, and of them that sit on them, and the flesh of all men, both free and bond, both small and great. And I saw the beast, and the kings of the earth, and their armies, gathered together to make war against him that sat on the horse, and against his army. And the beast was taken, and with him the false prophet that wrought miracles before him, with which he deceived them that had received the mark of the beast, and them that worshipped his image. These both were cast alive into a lake of fire burning with brimstone. And the remnant were slain with the sword of him that sat upon the horse, which sword proceeded out of his mouth: and all the fowls were filled with their flesh." Now, if this correspondence of Revelation 19:15, 17-21 with Revelation 14:17-20 is correct, then we have an interesting factor to consider. In Revelation 19:15, 17-21 it is not an angel, but the Lord Jesus Christ Himself who is smiting the nations with sword of His own mouth and who is treading the winepress of Almighty God's fierce wrath. Such would mean that our Lord Jesus Christ Himself is centrally involved in the negative harvest of judgment as reported in Revelation 14:17-20, even though He is not specifically mentioned in Revelation 14:17-20. Even so, this factor might allow us to view the report of the harvest-event from Revelation 14:14-16 and the report of the harvest-event from Revelation 14:17-20 as speaking concerning the same prophetic event, simply from two different perspectives. As such, the report of Revelation 14:14-16 would be placing emphasis upon Christ's on involvement in this negative harvest of judgment; whereas Revelation 14:17-20 would be placing emphasis upon the results of this negative harvest of judgment for the ungodly of the earth. In fact, the conclusion of the previous paragraph had been my past viewpoint through general readings of Revelation 14:14-20. However, in order to answer Brother Mike's question with integrity of thorough Bible study, I have been required to look more closely at the context of Revelation 14:14-20. Even so, my viewpoint concerning Revelation 14:14-16 is now somewhat different than I held in the past. Thus more to follow in a future posting . . .
  20. Brother "SureWord," I am pondering on how to proceed in answer to your question. It may yet be some time, since I still have to answer Brother Mike's question concerning Revelation 14:15-16.
  21. In my previous two postings, I have handled to last two questions on this list. In this posting I wish to engage the first three questions on this list. Since I have indicated my position in an earlier posting that the "Revelation-Coming of Christ" and "the day of Christ" are the same event, I can merge the first and third questions above - Is the "Rapture-Coming of Christ" the same as the "Revelation-Coming of Christ"/"the day of Christ," or are these two different events? In order to answer this question, we really need to answer the second question above - Do we have some indicator throughout the context of 2 Thessalonians 2 for viewing the "Rapture-Coming of Christ" as occurring at a different time than the "Revelation-Coming of Christ"/"the day of Christ"? (Note: If we do not, then I would be compelled to concede that the "Rapture-Coming of Christ" and the "Revelation-Coming of Christ"/"the day of Christ" are one and the same, and that they occur at the end of the seven year Tribulation Period.) In answer, I believe that we do have such an indicator. As we have noted, according to the teaching of 2 Thessalonians 2:3-8 the "Withholder" must be "taken out of the way" first in order for the "man of sin" to be "revealed in his time." Even so, in my previous posting I have presented the reasons why I hold that the "Withholder" is specifically the Holy Spirit of God as our "Anointing," as the "Indweller" of New Testament believers. Thus for this "Withholder" to be "taken out of the way," at that event the Holy Spirit would cease to be the continual "Indweller"/"Anointing" for all believers. This would NOT necessitate that the Holy Spirit would cease to exist and work among mankind upon the earth. Rather, it would mean that He would cease to indwell believers from the moment of conversion unto the moment of death. From that moment the working of the Holy Spirit among mankind would be like that of the Old Testament time period, rather than that of the New Testament church age. Now, there seem to be two ways in which this "taken out of the way" might occur. On the one hand, the first possibility is that the Holy Spirit would be removed from New Testament believers as their Indweller, but the New Testament believers would remain on the earth. However, this possibility would seem to stand in contradiction with the teaching of the New Testament concerning the permanent indwelling of the Holy Spirit for New Testament believers, as per John 14:16-17, Ephesians 1:13-14, etc. On the other hand, the second possibility is that the Holy Spirit as the Indweller of New Testament believers would be removed from the earth specifically because all New Testament believers would themselves be removed from the earth. So then, is there any event presented in God's Word wherein all New Testament believers are removed from the earth? Yes, for it would seem that the "Rapture-Coming of Christ" would fulfill this occurrence. Even so, if this is a correct thought process and understanding, then the event wherein the "Withholder" (the Holy Spirit of God as the Anointing/Indweller of New Testament believers) is "taken out of the way" is Biblically equivalent to the "Rapture-Coming of Christ." As such, the ordering of prophetic events from 2 Thessalonians 2 would now be as follows: 1. A "falling away." 2. The "withholder" himself is "taken out of the way" - "the Rapture-Coming of Christ." 3. The revelation of the "man of sin," "the son of perdition" - The beginning of the seven year Tribulation Period. 4. The blasphemy by the "man of sin," "the son of perdition" - The middle of the seven year Tribulation Period. 5. The "day of Christ," "the Revelation-Coming of Christ" - The destruction of the "man of sin," "the son of perdition" - The conclusion of the seven year Tribulation Period. According to this understanding, we do indeed have some indicator throughout the context of 2 Thessalonians 2 for viewing the "Rapture-Coming of Christ" as occurring at a different time than the "Revelation-Coming of Christ"/"the day of Christ." Indeed, we have an indicator that the "Rapture-Coming of Christ" is equivalent to the event wherein the "Withholder" is "taken out of the way" such that the "man of sin," the antichrist, "might be revealed in his time." Furthermore, if we accept that the revelation of the "man of sin" occurs at the beginning of the seven year Tribulation Period (as I have contended in an earlier posting), then the "Rapture-Coming of Christ" would occur immediately before that revelation and that beginning. However, there are certain points of understanding that must be acknowledged in order for this conclusion to "fall into place." First, the point that the "Withholder" is specifically the Holy Spirit of God as Indweller would need to be acknowledged. If an individual does not agree with this point, then that individual would NOT come to the same conclusion concerning the placement for the "Rapture-Coming of Christ." Second, the point that the revelation-event for the "man of sin" occurs with the beginning of the seven year Tribulation Period would need to be acknowledged. Again, if an individual does not agree with this point, then that individual would not necessarily come to the same conclusion concerning the placement for the "Rapture-Coming of Christ." (Note: This is the reason that I handled each of these two points with specific postings.)
  22. Hmmm. I am starting to wonder if I am talking into the air to myself here lately. Nevertheless, in my previous posting I handled the fourth of the above questions. In this posting I wish to engage the fifth of the above questions - Who is this "he" which holds back (withholds) the revelation of the man of sin? 2 Thessalonians 2:6-8a states, "And now ye know what withholdeth that he [the "man of sin" from verse 3] might be revealed in his time. For the mystery of iniquity doth already work: only he who now letteth [withholdeth] will let [withhold], until he be taken out of the way. And then shall that Wicked be revealed . . . ." Herein we learn a number of truths concerning the "Withholder" in relation to the "man of sin" - 1. The "Withholder," who is a singular "he," is holding back the revelation of the "man of sin" until "his time." 2. "The mystery of iniquity" is involved in the bringing forth the "man of sin." 3. "The mystery of iniquity" was already at work in the first century of the church age, and has continued at work since the first century of the church age unto the present. 4. The one reason that "the mystery of iniquity" has not yet brought forth the "man of sin" is because the "Withholder" is still holding back his revelation. 5. The "Withholder" shall continue to oppose the "mystery of iniquity" and hold back the revelation of the "man of sin" until "he be taken out of the way." 6. As soon as the "Withholder" is taken out the way, "then shall the Wicked [man of sin] be revealed." Thus we observe a relationship between three elements - between "the mystery of iniquity," the "man of sin," and the "Witholder" who opposes "they mystery of iniquity" and the revelation of the "man of sin." So, do we have any other passages of Scripture that present a similar relationship? I believe that we have two - 1 John 2:18-ff and 1 John 4:1-4. 1 John 2:18 states, "Little children, it is the last time: and as ye have heard that antichrist [singular] shall come, even now are there many antichrists [plural]; whereby we know that it is the last time." I would contend that the singular antichrist from 1 John 2:18 , who shall come some time in the future, is Biblically the same as the "man of sin, the son of perdition," who shall be "revealed in his time," from 2 Thessalonians 2:1-12. Even so also, I would contend that the many plural antichrists from 1 John 2:18, who are "even now" already among us, are Biblically equivalent to "the mystery of iniquity" from 2 Thessalonians 2:7, which "doth already work" among us. 1 John 4:3 states, "And every spirit that confesseth not that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh is not of God: and this is that spirit of antichrist, whereof ye have heard that it should come; and even now already is it in the world." I would contend that the "spirit of antichrist" that "should come" in the future is a reference to the coming of the singular antichrist, as per 1 John 2:18, and the revelation of the "man of sin," as per 2 Thessalonians 2:3-12. Even so also, I would contend that the "spirit of antichrist" that is "even now already . . . in the world" is Biblically equivalent to the many plural antichrists who are "even now" among us, as per 1 John 2:18, and to "the mystery of iniquity" that "doth already work" among us, as per 2 Thessalonians 2:7. Thus I would contend for the following Biblical equivalencies from the three passages: 1. The antichrist = the man of sin = the son of perdition -- who shall come/be revealed in the future. 2. The many antichrists = the spirit of antichrist = the mystery of iniquity -- which is even now already at work. Yet why is this of significance? 2 Thessalonians teaches us that there is a "Withholder" who is presently opposing and holding back "the mystery of iniquity" from bringing in the "man of sin" at the present time, until that "Withholder" is "taken out of the way." Thus we may ask if 1 John 2:18-ff and/or 1 John 4:1-4 reveals who this singular "Withholder" might be. Do either of these passages reveal anything about anyone who stands in opposition to the many antichrists of the spirit of antichrist that is even now already working? I would contend that the answer is "yes." 1 John 2:18-20 states, "Little children, it is the last time: and as ye have heard that antichrist shall come, even now are there many antichrists; whereby we know that it is the last time. They [the antichrists] went out from us, but they [the antichrists] were not of us; for if they [the antichrists] had been of us, they [the antichrists] would no doubt have continued with us: but they [the antichrists] went out, that they [the antichrists] might be made manifest that they [the antichrists] were not all of us. But [in contrast to the many antichrists] ye have an unction from the Holy One, and ye know all things." Even so, we learn that the spiritual power which stands in opposition to the spirit of antichrist, "the mystery of iniquity," is the "unction" that we have received "from the Holy One." So then, what is this "unction?" In 1 John 2:26-27 some answer is given, "These things have I written unto you concerning them that seduce you. But the anointing [the same Greek word as is translated "unction" in 1 John 2:20] which ye have received of him abideth in you, and ye need not that any man teach you: but as the same anointing teacheth you of all things, and is truth, and is no lie, and even as it hath taught you, ye shall abide in him." Even so, this "unction" that we have received "from the Holy One" abides within us believers, is our teacher of all truth, is itself truth and no lie, and specifically teaches us how to abide in the Holy One, our Lord Jesus Christ. To me this sound like the indwelling Holy Spirit of God. Furthermore, 1 John 4:1- states, "Beloved, believe not every spirit, but try the spirits whether they are of God: because many false prophets [many antichrists] are gone out into the world. Hereby know ye the Spirit of God: Every spirit that confesseth that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh is of God: and every spirit that confesseth not that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh is not of God: and this is that spirit of antichrist, whereof ye have heard that it should come; and even now already is it in the world. Ye are of God, little children, and have overcome them [the false prophets/antichrists]: because greater is he that is in you, than he that is in the world." Even so, we learn that He who opposes the spirit of antichrist which is "even now already" at work "in the world" is "the Spirit of God." Furthermore, we learn that we believers at present are able to overcome this "spirit of antichrist" specifically because the Holy Spirit of God who dwells in us is greater than the spirit of antichrist that dwells in the world. Thus I would contend for the following addition to the Biblical equivalencies of these passages: 1. The antichrist = the man of sin = the son of perdition -- who shall come/be revealed in the future. 2. The many antichrists = the spirit of antichrist = the mystery of iniquity -- which is even now already at work. 3. The unction/anointing that we have received from the Holy One = the indwelling Spirit of God = the Withholder. Yet I would emphasize a particular aspect of this point. The "Withholder" is NOT simply the Holy Spirit of God in general, but is specifically the Holy Spirit of God as our "Anointing," as the "Indweller" of New Testament believers. Both 1 John 2:20-ff and 1 John 4:4 emphasize this characteristic of the Holy Spirit as the Anointing who dwells IN US. (Note: This point will be a significance when we come to the other three questions concerning 2 Thessalonians 2:1-12.)
  23. Brother Bruce, I am still here, and have not forgotten our planned discussion. Good to know that you are also still here.
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