Sunday, June 30, 2013

Timing of the Rapture Pt.6

How close we are we to the rapture?  We’re one day closer. J  The rapture could happen at any moment; it is imminent.  The apostle Paul thought it would happen in his day.

1 Thessalonians 4:15
For this we say unto you by the word of the Lord, that we which are alive and remain unto the coming of the Lord shall not prevent them which are asleep.

1 Corinthians 15:51
Behold, I shew you a mystery; We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed,

Paul would have never guessed that it would be 2,000 years, because he didn’t know how many it would take for the fullness of the gentiles to be come in. 

Romans 11:25
For I would not, brethren, that ye should be ignorant of this mystery, lest ye should be wise in your own conceits; that blindness in part is happened to Israel, until the fulness of the Gentiles be come in.

Only God knows that.  So how close are we to the catching away?  Obviously, if Paul expected it to happen in his day, we are very close—much closer than in Paul’s day.  It could be today; it could be 100 years from now.

I think that God is on a 7,000-year schedule that he established in Genesis with the seven days of creation, with the seventh day being the Sabbath rest – the Kingdom rest for the earth.

Genesis 2:3
And God blessed the seventh day, and sanctified it: because that in it he had rested from all his work which God created and made.

Hebrews 4:10
For he that is entered into his rest, he also hath ceased from his own works, as God did from his.

Six thousand years of human history and one thousand years of rest.

2 Peter 3:8
But, beloved, be not ignorant of this one thing, that one day is with the Lord as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day.

To be continued…

Saturday, June 29, 2013

Timing of the Rapture Pt.5

Paul would say for some peoples’ sake, “I hope he postpones the rapture for a few years so they can grow.”  So let’s redeem the time and grow.  Don’t be ready to leave this world; let’s be ready to build Christ in us and in others. 

Ephesians 4:29
Let no corrupt communication proceed out of your mouth, but that which is good to the use of edifying, that it may minister grace unto the hearers.

Let’s be ready to get into Romans through Philemon and get that doctrine in us, that’s the work of faith.  Believe it and let it work in us.

Philippians 2:12b
work out your own salvation with fear and trembling.

Let us do the labour of love.  Let’s have the patience of the hope of glory as we endure suffering. 

1 Thessalonians 1:3
Remembering without ceasing your work of faith, and labour of love, and patience of hope in our Lord Jesus Christ, in the sight of God and our Father;

Don’t be ready to go home; be ready to get the gospel in you and to others. 

Romans 1:15a
So, as much as in me is, I am ready to preach the gospel

When Paul said that he was a debtor, he knew this truth:

Romans 1:14
I am debtor both to the Greeks, and to the Barbarians; both to the wise, and to the unwise.

Paul built the gospel of grace up in him and he was ready to give it to others and to suffer for Christ so that we might reign together with him.

2 Timothy 2:12a
If we suffer, we shall also reign with him

To be continued…

Friday, June 28, 2013

Timing of the Rapture Pt.4

When Paul tells us to keep looking for that blessed hope, he isn’t saying that we should be looking for Christ to come take us out of this world because we’re tired.  He’s saying, “Oh Lord, I’m ready to get my reward; I’ve been suffering for you.

2 Corinthians 1:5
For as the sufferings of Christ abound in us, so our consolation also aboundeth by Christ.

I fought a good fight; I finished my course; I kept the faith.”

2 Timothy 4:7-8
I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the faithHenceforth there is laid up for me a crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, shall give me at that day: and not to me only, but unto all them also that love his appearing.

2 Timothy 1:12
For the which cause I also suffer these things: nevertheless I am not ashamed: for I know whom I have believed, and am persuaded that he is able to keep that which I have committed unto him against that day.

That day is the judgment seat of Christ following the rapture.  Paul never looked for the rapture/resurrection to take him away from his problems.  No!  He gloried in his infirmities.

2 Corinthians 12:9
And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.

He looked for it as the day of reward when our work is finished and it’s time to go home.

1 Corinthians 3:8
Now he that planteth and he that watereth are one: and every man shall receive his own reward according to his own labour.

But he also viewed the rapture as a day of shame for some.

2 Timothy 2:15
 Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.

To be continued…

Thursday, June 27, 2013

Timing of the Rapture Pt. 3

If you’re ready to go home and see the Lord, praise God!  But you have to temper that with understanding.  God has a will for you today [1 Timothy 2:4].  If you’re ready and eager to learn (i.e., come to the knowledge of the truth) – that’s the will of God for you .

2 Corinthians 5:5-8
Now he that hath wrought us for the selfsame thing is God, who also hath given unto us the earnest of the Spirit.  Therefore we are always confident, knowing that, whilst we are at home in the body, we are absent from the Lord:  (For we walk by faith, not by sight:)  We are confident, I say, and willing rather to be absent from the body, and to be present with the Lord.

To depart and be with Christ is far better than being here.  But do you know what Paul says?

Philippians 1:23-24
For I am in a strait betwixt two, having a desire to depart, and to be with Christ; which is far better:  Nevertheless to abide in the flesh is more needful for you.

He says that to stay in his flesh and teach the word of God is more needful for the body of Christ.

Who wants to live in this lost, dying, Christ-rejecting, saint-rejecting world?  They reject us too because we are “in Christ’s stead.”

2 Corinthians 5:20
Now then we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God did beseech you by us: we pray you in Christ's stead, be ye reconciled to God.

But like Paul, every day when I wake up without being raptured in my sleep, I see it as another day to serve the Lord.  I start praying for the saints, getting into the word and doing the work of the ministry.

Ephesians 4:12
For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ:

I will keep doing that every day, Lord willing; and he is, as long as I’m willing. 

To be continued…

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Timing of the Rapture Pt.2

In Paul’s thinking, the rapture and the judgment seat of Christ are synonymous.  You are not ready for the judgment seat of Christ if you are new to Pauline doctrine [the revelation of the mystery].  You want to continue to be built up by the word of his grace.

Acts 20:32
And now, brethren, I commend you to God, and to the word of his grace, which is able to build you up, and to give you an inheritance among all them which are sanctified.

You’re not ready yet; you’re not perfected yet.

2 Corinthians 13:11
Finally, brethren, farewell. Be perfect, be of good comfort, be of one mind, live in peace; and the God of love and peace shall be with you.

Ephesians 4:12-13
For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ:  Till we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ:

Colossians 1:28
Whom we preach, warning every man, and teaching every man in all wisdom; that we may present every man perfect in Christ Jesus:

You haven’t attained.

Philippians 3:12
Not as though I had already attained, either were already perfect: but I follow after, if that I may apprehend that for which also I am apprehended of Christ Jesus.

You want to be qualified at the judgment seat of Christ.

2 Corinthians 5:10
For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ; that every one may receive the things done in his body, according to that he hath done, whether it be good or bad.

You want to be a faithful servant in the truth.

1 Corinthians 4:1-2
Let a man so account of us, as of the ministers of Christ, and stewards of the mysteries of God.  Moreover it is required in stewards, that a man be found faithful.

You want to have the mind of Christ.

1 Corinthians 2:16
For who hath known the mind of the Lord, that he may instruct him? but we have the mind of Christ.

Use the time to build up the doctrine.

1 Timothy 4:13, 16
Till I come, give attendance to reading, to exhortation, to doctrineTake heed unto thyself, and unto the doctrine; continue in them: for in doing this thou shalt both save thyself, and them that hear thee.

To be continued…

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Timing of the Rapture Pt.1

What are your thoughts on how close we are to the catching away?  Is there any scripture that clues us in as to when that event will occur?  I’m ready to go home!

That is two different issues.  Praise the Lord that you’re ready to go home and see the Lord.  I have dealt with saints who, as they see the world getting worse and worse, are setting their attention where Paul say we should not – the things of this earth. Rather...

Colossians 3:2
Set your affection on things above, not on things on the earth.

If you are ready to go home because you’re tired of this world, that is okay; but if you’re ready to go home because you’re discouraged because of the things happening in the world and you’re worn out and faint because of the things of this world, then you need some spiritual comfort.

2 Corinthians 4:1
Therefore seeing we have this ministry, as we have received mercy, we faint not;

The mindset of Christ is that we redeem the time.

Ephesians 5:16
Redeeming the time, because the days are evil.

We want to take advantage of all the time we have here because we understand what the Father is doing.

2 Corinthians 5:8-9
We are confident, I say, and willing rather to be absent from the body, and to be present with the Lord.  Wherefore we labour, that, whether present or absent, we may be accepted of him.

God left us here so that all men could be saved and come unto the knowledge of the truth.

1 Timothy 2:4
Who will have all men to be saved, and to come unto the knowledge of the truth.

He left us here so that we could go through the curriculum that our Father has given us as sons; and, that is to build up the doctrine within us, aka, a work of faith

Philippians 2:15
That ye may be blameless and harmless, the sons of God, without rebuke, in the midst of a crooked and perverse nation, among whom ye shine as lights in the world;

Colossians 2:7
Rooted and built up in him, and stablished in the faith, as ye have been taught, abounding therein with thanksgiving.

2 Timothy 3:10
But thou hast fully known my doctrine, manner of life, purpose, faith, longsuffering, charity, patience,

…and also to do a labour of love to see other people saved and come unto the knowledge of the truth…

1 Thessalonians 1:3
Remembering without ceasing your work of faith, and labour of love, and patience of hope in our Lord Jesus Christ, in the sight of God and our Father;

...and to suffer with and for Christ so that we receive a full reward.

Romans 8:17
And if children, then heirs; heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Christ; if so be that we suffer with him, that we may be also glorified together.

1 Corinthians 3:14
If any man's work abide which he hath built thereupon, he shall receive a reward.

When we talk about the rapture – looking for that blessed hope…

Titus 2:13
Looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ; is not just so that the Lord can come and deliver us from this present evil world.  That is good, but there is something more there.  What is associated with the rapture/catching away/resurrection is the glory – the judgment seat of Christ. 

Romans 8:18
For I reckon that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us.

To be continued…

Thursday, June 20, 2013

Acts Can Be Confusing

I get many questions about the book of Acts, and it is no marvel; it can be a confusing book because it is a transitional book.  It is not used to build doctrine like Romans, Hebrews and others.  The purpose of the book of Acts is to convey the actions and activities of God the Holy Ghost and his ministry in the earth through the apostles; first through the 12 apostles to Israel, and then through the one unique and distinct apostle Paul to us (primarily gentiles) in the body of Christ in this dispensation of grace.

Because of that, there are some confusing passages, especially for us because Acts is a Jewish letter written to and about the nation of Israel, not to and about us.  Therefore the focus and intent of Acts is to speak to the Jewish people.  That is why we see Paul circumcising Timothy.

Acts 16:3
Him would Paul have to go forth with him; and took and circumcised him because of the Jews which were in those quarters: for they knew all that his father was a Greek.

Also Paul was baptized and baptized a few Jews [early in his ministry].

Acts 9:18
And immediately there fell from his eyes as it had been scales: and he [Saul/Paul] received sight forthwith, and arose, and was baptized.

Acts 19:3-5
And he said unto them, Unto what then were ye baptized? And they said, Unto John's baptism.  Then said Paul, John verily baptized with the baptism of repentance, saying unto the people, that they should believe on him which should come after him, that is, on Christ Jesus.  When they heard this, they were baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus.

That was their program; and it can be confusing to us.  As a transitional book from law to grace it is a bridge from God’s prophetic program with Israel to his mystery program with us today in the dispensation of grace.  Not only was Israel set aside, cast aside, fallen…

Romans 11:11
I say then, Have they stumbled that they should fall? God forbid: but rather through their fall salvation is come unto the Gentiles, for to provoke them to jealousy.

…but they also had a diminishing.

Romans 11:12-14
Now if the fall of them be the riches of the world, and the diminishing of them the riches of the Gentiles; how much more their fulness?  For I speak to you Gentiles, inasmuch as I am the apostle of the Gentiles, I magnify mine office:  If by any means I may provoke to emulation them which are my flesh, and might save some of them.

Paul’s ministry was a provoking ministry to the nation of Israel. 

God teaches Israel in Acts using a cycling of information; as he also does in Revelation and Genesis.  He gives information and then builds upon it; he will restate it and give commentary.  In Genesis 1 we see the creation of everything; then in Genesis 2 God gives the details.

Revelation 7 talks about the kingdom being established.

Revelation 7:14-17
And I said unto him, Sir, thou knowest. And he said to me, These are they which came out of great tribulation, and have washed their robes, and made them white in the blood of the Lamb.  Therefore are they before the throne of God, and serve him day and night in his temple: and he that sitteth on the throne shall dwell among them.  They shall hunger no more, neither thirst any more; neither shall the sun light on them, nor any heat.  For the Lamb which is in the midst of the throne shall feed them, and shall lead them unto living fountains of waters: and God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes.

Then we see it again in Revelation 21, but with more detail.  So there is cycling, a rehashing of events that gives more and more information and understanding.

Hopefully this helps...Maranatha!

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Silly women

2 Timothy 3:6-7
For of this sort [this kind of men] are they which creep into houses and lead captive silly women laden with sins, …

It’s interesting how the apostle speaks of this kind of men, in that they creep in.  When you go into someone’s home, you knock on the door and you ask to come in.  Creeping in is something that thieves do; they sneak in.  It’s kind of Satanic.  Today they do it through the media:  through radio and television.  Look at the sneakiness of this kind of men.  They creep into houses and they ‘lead captive silly women.’

These are women who are unaware.  They are easily deceived.  They trust too easily.  That is the point. They just go along with any doctrine that they hear that is supposedly of God because the guy is reading the Bible. 

Ephesians 4:14b
…tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the sleight of men, and cunning craftiness, whereby they lie in wait to deceive;

These men know that.  The Lord said as much about the Pharisees and Scribes in that they devour widows’ houses.

Matthew 23:14
Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye devour widows' houses, and for a pretence make long prayer: therefore ye shall receive the greater damnation.

They go in and destroy women who don’t have coverings (authorities over them); they destroy their faith and take their money.  These men today do that too. 

They lead captive silly women laden with sin in that they are women who are trying to be unburdened of their sinful life and they are looking for an answer.  These men say they have the answer, but they don’t.  They are reprobate concerning the faith (2 Tim. 3:8).  They put these women under a performance-based acceptance system before God, and tell them that if they give them their money [love/seed offering] they will help them do it, instead of giving them the grace message.

Romans 6:14-15
For sin shall not have dominion over you: for ye are not under the law, but under grace. What then? shall we sin, because we are not under the law, but under grace? God forbid.

Paul says that these women are:

…led away with divers lusts, Ever learning [they are in the scriptures], and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth.

They are being biblical and scriptural, but because they are not dispensational in their bible study, they don’t understand it.  They never come unto the knowledge of the grace truth.

1 Timothy 2:4
Who will have all men [and women] to be saved, and to come unto the knowledge of the truth.


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Thursday, June 13, 2013

Goal of Prophecy

Genesis 1:1
In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth.

The book of Acts comes right before Paul’s epistles.  It shows the bridge between God dealing with the nation of Israel in time past and his dealing with us gentiles through the books of the apostle Paul (Romans through Philemon).

Romans 11:13
For I speak to you Gentiles, inasmuch as I am the apostle of the Gentiles, I magnify mine office:

2 Timothy 1:11
Whereunto I am appointed a preacher, and an apostle, and a teacher of the Gentiles.

But when you leave Paul’s epistles, after the dispensation of grace has ended, the next book in scripture in chronological order is the book of Hebrews which is written to the people of Israel – the Hebrews (their race, their language).

Hebrews 1:1-2
God, who at sundry times and in divers manners spake in time past unto the fathers by the prophets, Hath in these last days spoken unto us [Israel] by his Son, whom he hath appointed heir of all things, by whom also he made the worlds;

Genesis 14:13
And there came one that had escaped, and told Abram the Hebrew;

The book of Hebrews has a future context even though it was written nearly 2,000 years ago.  It has a prophetic view.  All the books of Hebrews through Revelation are written [to and] about the nation of Israel.

James 1:1
James, a servant of God and of the Lord Jesus Christ, to the twelve tribes which are scattered abroad, greeting.

They have a future context in that Day of the Lord, particularly the 70th week of Daniel, the time of Jacob’s trouble, which is right before the kingdom. 

Isaiah 13:9
Behold, the day of the Lord cometh, cruel both with wrath and fierce anger, to lay the land desolate: and he shall destroy the sinners thereof out of it.

Daniel 9:24-27
Seventy weeks are determined upon thy people and upon thy holy city, to finish the transgression, and to make an end of sins, and to make reconciliation for iniquity, and to bring in everlasting righteousness, and to seal up the vision and prophecy, and to anoint the most Holy.  Know therefore and understand, that from the going forth of the commandment to restore and to build Jerusalem unto the Messiah the Prince shall be seven weeks, and threescore and two weeks: the street shall be built again, and the wall, even in troublous times.  And after threescore and two weeks shall Messiah be cut off, but not for himself: and the people of the prince that shall come shall destroy the city and the sanctuary; and the end thereof shall be with a flood, and unto the end of the war desolations are determined.  And he shall confirm the covenant with many for one week: and in the midst of the week he shall cause the sacrifice and the oblation to cease, and for the overspreading of abominations he shall make it desolate, even until the consummation, and that determined shall be poured upon the desolate.

Jeremiah 30:7
Alas! for that day is great, so that none is like it: it is even the time of Jacob's trouble, but he shall be saved out of it.

The issue again is the Law of Moses and the prophetic program.  Israel will be under the law, particularly until the kingdom comes when they (the believing remnant) will have God’s law written in their hearts.

Jeremiah 31:31-33
Behold, the days come, saith the Lord, that I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel, and with the house of Judah:  Not according to the covenant that I made with their fathers in the day that I took them by the hand to bring them out of the land of Egypt; which my covenant they brake, although I was an husband unto them, saith the Lord:  But this shall be the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel; After those days, saith the Lord, I will put my law in their inward parts, and write it in their hearts; and will be their God, and they shall be my people.

Hebrews 8:10
 For this is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, saith the Lord; I will put my laws into their mind, and write them in their hearts: and I will be to them a God, and they shall be to me a people:

  The nation of Israel and the earthly kingdom are the focus.

Daniel 2:44
And in the days of these kings shall the God of heaven set up a kingdom, which shall never be destroyed: and the kingdom shall not be left to other people, but it shall break in pieces and consume all these kingdoms, and it shall stand for ever.

Matthew 8:11
And I say unto you, That many shall come from the east and west, and shall sit down with Abraham, and Isaac, and Jacob, in the kingdom of heaven.

People talk about prophecy and that is why you have to rightly divide the word.

2 Timothy 2:15
Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.

The goal of the prophetic program is the God of Heaven establishing a kingdom on earth All of the prophetic writings are looking forward to that.  When you rightly divide the word, the mystery writings – those committed to the apostle Paul – have to do with the God of Heaven reestablishing his rule and reign in the heavenly places and over all the principalities and powers there.

Colossians 1:16
For by him were all things created, that are in heaven, and that are in earth, visible and invisible, whether they be thrones, or dominions, or principalities, or powers: all things were created by him, and for him:

Ephesians 1:10
That in the dispensation of the fulness of times he might gather together in one all things in Christ, both which are in heaven, and which are on earth; even in him:

That is why the body of Christ was created—to rule and reign in the heavenlies (whereas, Israel will rule and reign with Christ on earth). 

2 Timothy 4:18
And the Lord shall deliver me from every evil work, and will preserve me unto his heavenly kingdom: to whom be glory for ever and ever. Amen.

1 Corinthians 6:3a
Know ye not that we shall judge angels?

We understand that when we rightly divide the word.  When we study Hebrews, we see how God deals with Israel in the earth, and then compare and contrast that to how God deals with us today in the dispensation of grace as members of the body of Christ.  That is how you study scripture.  You compare spiritual things with spiritual and you get great understanding.

1 Corinthians 2:13
Which things also we speak, not in the words which man's wisdom teacheth, but which the Holy Ghost teacheth; comparing spiritual things with spiritual.

2 Timothy 2:7
Consider what I say; and the Lord give thee understanding in all things.


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Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Righteousness of God versus Self-Righteousness

Romans 10:3
For they being ignorant of God's righteousness, and going about to establish their own righteousness, have not submitted themselves unto the righteousness of God.

Religious people are ignorant of God’s righteousness.

Romans 3:21
But now the righteousness of God without the law [“without religion” aka, a performance-based acceptance system] is manifested, being witnessed by the law and the prophets;

It is the righteousness of God by the faith of Jesus Christ:  his perfect faith to go to the cross.

Philippians 3:9
And be found in him, not having mine own righteousness, which is of the law, but that which is through the faith of Christ, the righteousness which is of God by faith:

Now (in the dispensation of his grace) God does not require the law performance for righteousness; he requires faith in his grace at Calvary.

Ephesians 2:8-9
For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God:   Not of works, lest any man should boast.

1 Corinthians 15:3-4
For I delivered unto you first of all that which I also received, how that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures;  And that he was buried, and that he rose again the third day according to the scriptures:

Religious people today are ignorant of the grace message, so to please God they are going about trying to establish their own righteousness.  That is called self-righteousness.  That is what you encounter when you tell someone about God’s grace message, and they say, “No, no, no.  There is something that I must do.  I have to...

…Be baptized
…Confess my sins
…Pray a prayer
…Join a church...”

No, they learned that from Acts 2:38. 

Acts 2:38
Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost.

Some religious person (whether a preacher, teacher, evangelist, or family member) told them that.  That is not what God’s spokesman, Paul, for us today tells you.
Romans 3:22
Even the righteousness of God which is by faith of Jesus Christ unto all and upon all them that believe: for there is no difference:

1 Corinthians 1:21
For after that in the wisdom of God the world by wisdom knew not God, it pleased God by the foolishness of preaching to save them that believe.

Galatians 3:22
But the scripture hath concluded all under sin, that the promise by faith of Jesus Christ might be given to them that believe.

1 Timothy 1:16
Howbeit for this cause I obtained mercy, that in me first Jesus Christ might shew forth all longsuffering, for a pattern to them which should hereafter believe on him to life everlasting.

But they are going about attempting to establish their own righteousness.  It is a submission issue; it is a heart issue.  They have not submitted themselves unto the righteousness of God.

Romans 10:4
For Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to every one that believeth.

So now since the Lord Jesus Christ showed up, lived a perfect life under that righteous law and died for sins – he is the issue.


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