Questions & Answers Dealing With These Subjects --
(NOTE: If Subject is BOLD, this indicates it is a newly added Question and Answer)
Age A Person Can Partake in the Lord's Supper
QUESTION: My daughter is starting to stay in once in a while with the adults during our studies, and she was here for the Lord’s Supper on Sabbath. But we were both confused at what age can the kids start to do the Supper – for bread and wine? The children are 6 and 11. Thank you.
ANSWER: The Lord’s Supper dealt with each of the disciples partaking of the symbols of the Lord's body (bread) and blood (grape juice), thus symbolizing a close union and oneness between the Lord and each disciple. This oneness and closeness between the disciples and their Lord was only possible because each had already publically confessed Jesus Christ to be their Lord and Saviour through public baptism. Therefore if one today has not yet studied and accepted the truth as it is in Jesus, and has not yet publically confessed Jesus Christ to be their Lord and Saviour through a public baptism by immersion, then they are not yet ready to partake in the Lord’s Supper and share in this close union and oneness between them and the Lord.
This means that age is somewhat irrelevant regarding when one can partake of the Lord's Supper, since it all depends on when one can understand the truth and can be thoroughly convicted of their sins and of their need of the Saviour Jesus Christ to save them, and then intelligently decides to be baptized. Now any child or adult can participate in the foot washing ceremony since it deals with surrender of pride to serve one another. But only those who are batpized can participate in the Lord's Supper.
Apostles of Christ Doing Wonders Today
QUESTION: I was wondering if "apostles" are also accompanied with signs and wonders in this day?
ANSWER: God never changes, so it is possible that these same signs and wonders will occur among His people today. Yet, at the same time, we cannot take any of these signs and wonders as absolute proof that God is indeed blessing the group or person we see these signs connected with. This is because the Devil can also cause signs and wonders to occur among his followers, and even make his servants appear as ministers of righteousness in order to deceive unwary souls (2 Corinthians 11:14-15).
So because signs and wonders are not a true test of who is really serving God, then how do we know who is really following God, and who is really following the devil?
“To the law and to the testimony: if they speak not according to this word, [it is] because [there is] no light in them.” Isaiah 8:20.
“Wherefore by their fruits, ye shall know them.” Matthew 7:20.
Appointment of Pastors, Deacons, etc.
QUESTION: I have a question regarding how pastors are appointed in a church. Obviously we know the requirements of being a preacher according to 1 Timothy chapter 3, but how is a preacher chosen. My wife ask me the question "How does pastors, apostles, deacons, prophets, etc., get their titles, are there any requirements other than owning a bible? Are they appointed by man or by God ". If you can shed some light on this for me I will greatly appreciate it.
ANSWER: In Acts 13:1-4 we find the answer to your question:
“Now there were in the church that was at Antioch certain prophets and teachers; as Barnabas, and Simeon that was called Niger, and Lucius of Cyrene, and Manaen, which had been brought up with Herod the tetrarch, and Saul. As they ministered to the Lord, and fasted, the Holy Ghost said, Separate me Barnabas and Saul for the work whereunto I have called them. And when they had fasted and prayed, and laid [their] hands on them, they sent [them] away. So they, being sent forth by the Holy Ghost, departed unto Seleucia; and from thence they sailed to Cyprus.”
This tells us that the one to be ordained as a minister is not chosen by other church leaders, but is chosen by God the Holy Spirit (see Acts 13:2). The one to be ordained as a minister or a deacon or elder, etc., is also not approved by the consensus of the other home churches, but is approved by the consensus of the local home church members where he resides (Acts 13:1, 3).
When the Holy Spirit impresses the hearts of the majority of members in the same home church that one man among them has exhibited the Biblical fruits descriptive of a minister, then these members are led by God to set aside, lay hands upon and ordain this man to be their minister (see Acts 13:1-3).
So Biblical Gospel Order is one is which the Holy Spirit Himself chooses a particular man among a particular home church to be its minister, etc., and then it is the home church members themselves that recognize this fact by publically setting aside and ordaining this man to be their minister. You know, who better understands whether a man should be ordained as its minister, or elder or deacon, etc., than the very members themselves who have seen the fruits and life of this particular man?
Attending a Funeral in a Sunday-Keeping Church
QUESTION: What is your counsel on attending a funeral at a Sunday-keeping church? I personally do not want to ever enter in, as I would be afraid of causing the message we stand for to be stained by knowingly entering into a church I know does not preach the truth, even if it was not for a sermon but for a funeral. My grandmother is in her eighties. She will soon go to sleep, and I am the only Sabbath keeper in the family. None of my family, as far as I know, believe in the truth about the state of the dead, so I know I will hear the heresy of the immortality of the soul. They did not even anoint Jesus' body because of the Sabbath approaching, but waited until after the Sabbath. I have decided, at this point, to not go when that day comes unless the Lord impresses me with His desire for me to go to be a witness. I can see the problems arising already, but I must stand firm. I ask for your prayers in this regard.
ANSWER: This particular issue is between you and the Lord God as to what you should do – especially in a non-Catholic setting. But since this service would be dealing with your grandma, you have every right to take literature about the true state of the dead for your relatives and others to take. You can even distribute this literature before the service began on all the seats. That way the truth about the state of the dead could be known by all the attendees, and you would not just be there to hear the error of the immortality of the soul.
Attending a Wedding on the Sabbath
QUESTION: Last year my brother was married on a Sabbath, as many today are, and I refused to attend. What is your counsel on weddings being held on God's holy day? I feel it is wrong to have weddings on the Sabbath, a day to honor God, not self. What are your thoughts? Also, what are your thoughts on funerals being held on the Sabbath?
ANSWER: In Isaiah 58:13-14 it plainly states: “If thou turn away thy foot from the sabbath, from doing thy pleasure on my holy day; and call the sabbath a delight, the holy of the LORD, honourable; and shalt honour him, not doing thine own ways, nor finding thine own pleasure, nor speaking thine own words: Then shalt thou delight thyself in the LORD; and I will cause thee to ride upon the high places of the earth, and feed thee with the heritage of Jacob thy father: for the mouth of the LORD hath spoken it.”
God declared that the Sabbath was His “holy day”, not ours. It was a day that was specifically devoted to be focused upon God. A special day centered upon Him, where we were to honor Him by not doing what we want to, or finding our own pleasure to perform, or even speaking our own words, as it is a time wherein to worship God and place Him first and foremost in our hearts, thoughts and words to others who may gather together with us.
Now a wedding is just the opposite, as it is a day specifically devoted to be focused upon the couple getting married. It is a special day centered upon the couple, where they are to be honored. Even though God can be mentioned during the wedding ceremony, yet it is still a day wherein the plans and pleasures of the couple are to be carried out, and their happiness is to be first and foremost in the hearts, thoughts and sayings of all the guests who come to join in the festivities.
The same about a funeral. A funeral is a day specifically devoted to be focused upon the person who has died. It is a special day centered upon that person, where they are to be honored. Even though God can be mentioned during the eulogy, yet it is still a day wherein the plans of the deceased and their family are to be carried out, and thoughts of the life of the deceased are to be first and foremost in the hearts and saying of all the guests who come to join in the service.
So as you can hopefully see, to hold a wedding or even a funeral upon God’s Sabbath day would not be honoring God supremely, because this sacred time would also be partly devoted to honoring the couple getting married, or even honoring the person who had died. Thus part of God’s sacred and holy day would be devoted to someone else, and God would thereby be robbed of all the worship and all the honor due to His holy name during those times.
As this is true, then let all of God’s followers devote all 24 hours of each and every Sabbath to honoring and worshipping God – their Creator, and not be tempted to even devote a small portion of this sacred day to honoring someone else.
Book of Enoch
QUESTION: Regarding the book of Enoch: why isn’t it a part of the bible? And should we take that book into consideration and read it?
ANSWER: I believe the answers to both your questions are No. The Book of Enoch is not inspired by God, but is the fanciful production of men. It teaches that the number of angels who fell was only 200, whereas the Bible teaches that out of all the millions upon millions of angels in heaven, there were fully 1/3 that fell into sin and were then cast out of heaven to the earth (Daniel 7:10; Revelation 5:11).
The Book of Enoch also teaches that once these 200 fallen angels reached earth they then decided to mate with human females, who then became pregnant and gave birth to giants called the Nephilim. Whereas the Bible states that the angels cannot marry, or in other words they have no ability to reproduce any offspring (Matthew 22:30).
So this means that the Book of Enoch conflicts with the Bible, and therefore is not inspired of God, and is not part of any materials needed for salvation. Now if you are wanting to research into the books of Enoch in order to expose the errors it teaches, that is one thing. But to believe it contains material necessary for you to be saved, the answer is – it does not.
Call No Man Your Father
QUESTION: Please explain Matthew 23:9 – "And call no man your father upon the earth: for one is your Father, which is in heaven."
ANSWER: God declared in His 5th commandment that we are all to “honor our father and our mother...” (Exodus 20:12). Thus it is permitted by God Himself to call your literal birth male parent your father – because he really is. But no other human male has the right to be called or known as your father because they really are not.
So what Christ was meaning in Matthew 23:9 was that we are not to call any non-parent our father, and especially is this the case in a religious setting. This is because God Almighty is our real Father in heaven. Therefore to call anyone your father, other than your real earthly birth father or your real heavenly Father, would in fact be stealing away this endearing, loving and affectionate title from them and giving it to an impostor.
Christ Baptised at Age 30
QUESTION: If the Age of accountability is 20 and above (Exodus 30:14), why was Christ baptized at the age of 30 (Luke 3:21-23)? Is it because at that moment "the time was fulfilled" (Daniel 9:24-27 and Mark 1:15)? That probably answered my question there, but still I need confirmation of this.
ANSWER: Yes, you are correct. Christ began His public ministry at the time of His baptism, which was the beginning of the 69th week of the 70 week prophecy of Daniel 9:24-27. This was when Christ was about 30 years of age.
So then what was Jesus doing with His life before that time – say from about 20 years old to 30? He was helping take care of His parents, especially of His mother after Joseph had died. This shows that Christ was fulfilling the fifth commandment, even though He was already an adult and of the age of accountability.
Danger of Remaining in Corrupt and Apostate Churches
QUESTION: Is it ok to remain connected with a church which I know is corrupt and no longer following the truth it once was founded upon? How else are we to witness with those in the church who know nothing is wrong?
ANSWER: The idea that you must remain within the corruption and apostasy of a church in order to try and reach the people is nothing new. Way back during the first century, there was a man who ran up and down the streets of Jerusalem for seven years trying to warn the people that destruction was about to occur (see Spirit of Prophecy, vol 4, p 31; and Great Controversy, p 30). He warned the people of Jerusalem for three and a half years, and then the abomination of desolation was planted in the holy ground, and instead of separating himself from his church and fleeing as Christ had commanded all of His followers to do (Matthew 24:15-18), he decided instead to stay and continue to warn the people from within. But his message did not change one bit. He continued to preach about the abominations and the judgments that were to come upon Jerusalem, but he refused to preach to the people that separation out of the church to Jesus – their professed Master and leader – was a necessity for their eternal lives because the abomination of desolation had already been planted. And even though he stayed and continued to warned the people that destruction was about to occur, there is no evidence that anyone heeded his message and was saved by fleeing Jerusalem. So even though he disobeyed Christ and stayed to warn the people, it did no good.
Now it is very interesting that the historian, Josephus, reveals that this man's name was Jesus (See Jerusalem and Rome: The Writings of Josephus, p 161). Yet all the church members had a choice of following either the example and command of the real Jesus Christ--by willingly separating themselves from their apostate church, or by choosing to follow the example of this false Jesus by remaining in the church to warn about all the abominations going on within it.
What happened to this false christ and those who chose to follow his example by disobeying the real Christ and remaining in the doomed apostate church? More that one million Jewish church members were destroyed right along with the apostate church. But not one Christian perished in this destruction, because these had already obeyed the real Christ and separated from the doomed church to a place of safety outside Jerusalem (Matthew 24:15-18; Luke 21:20-21).
Did this false-christ ever realize that because he chose to disobey God and refused to separate himself from the church, that he was lost along with all the rest of those who followed His example? This false christ blindly continued to proclaim the abominations and woes of the church, until the very end when he did finally wake up to the fact that he was going to lose his eternal life in its destruction!
Josephus records his last words: “...for seven years and five months he continued his wail, his voice did not weaken, nor did he grow weary until, during the siege, when he beheld his prophecies come true, his voice was stopped. For then, as he was making his rounds on the wall, crying in a piercing voice, ‘Woe, woe once more, to the city, to the people, and to the Temple,’ and this time adding, ‘Woe, woe to myself also,’ he was struck by a stone shot from the ballista and killed on the spot, his dying lips still uttering the same portentous words.” Jerusalem and Rome: The Writings of Josephus, p 162 (War VI, 5:3).
This man lost both his temporal and eternal life because he disobeyed Christ's command and refused to separate from the apostate church, and not one single soul was reported to have been saved by his choice to remain inside the church and warn the people from within! So by his refusal to separate from the church and by his example of disobedience (even though he continued to cry about all the abominations) he showed that he was a false christ. Thus he died in vain along with all who refused to leave the church in order to be with Christ and His true followers on the outside.
He should have obeyed the Lord and separated from the doomed church, showing by his example of obedience the way of life. Thus others might have taken notice of his example, and saved their own lives. Nevertheless, all were given ample opportunity to escape, and all made their decisions to leave or stay. And those who lost their lives for eternity can only blame it upon their own choice to disobey Christ's command to separate!
This same exact scenario is being repeated today! There is no way that any of the corrupt churches can corporately escape the doom awaiting them--probation for these churches has closed. And there will be no way that any individual will escape destruction should they choose to remain connected with and a part of these apostate churches. The only way to escape God's judgments on these churches is to completely separate yourself (including your membership) from them all (Revelation 18:1-5), and as you are doing so try to awaken and bring as many of your fellow church members out with you.
After you are no longer connected with the apostate church you can still witness to your friends and loved ones who are still within it about the necessity of coming out. But now you will be witnessing to them on a personal one-on-one basis and not within the atmosphere of the corrupt church, and thus your witness can be much more effective.
Dying Without Being Baptized
QUESTION: What if I die right now WITHOUT being baptised?
ANSWER: Our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ has declared that “He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved” (Mark 16:16). And the Apostle Peter tells that after we are baptized, then “ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost” (Acts 2:38). So those who believe that God Almighty has sent His Son Jesus Christ to become their personal Saviour, are to signify this belief in public by being baptized. Then, once they are baptized, they begin walking on this straight and narrow pathway that leads to their salvation, and can receive the gift of the Holy Ghost to work in their lives and help them remain on this pathway to eternal life without falling off.
But baptism signifies something more which many may not realize. By choosing to follow this command of our Lord actually shows that you have “justified God, [by] being baptized” (Luke 7:29). This is because you signify through your public baptism that you actually believe that God has indeed sent His Son to save you from your sins, or you would not have been willing to submit to it. Now then this also plainly tells us that those who may believe that Jesus is their Saviour, but who choose not to be baptized, have actually “rejected the counsel of God against themselves, [by] being not baptized” (Luke 7:30). And by rejecting this counsel of God, they cannot be saved.
So now to answer your question: If you know the truth and have accepted Christ as your personal Lord and Saviour, but consistently refuse to publically acknowledge your acceptance of the Lord through baptism, then you are choosing to reject this important step in your walk with the Lord, you are also refusing to publically justify God, and you are also refusing to receive the gift of the Holy Spirit in your life. Should you continue to persistently refuse to obey the Lord’s will by being baptized, and this happens to remain your decision until you die, then you have rejected this command of our Lord, have also rejected the counsel of God against yourself, have also rejected the gift of the Holy Spirit in your life, and thus you cannot be saved, but will be lost!
Easter in the Bible
QUESTION: Is this verse a misprint? Acts 12:4, "And when he had apprehended him, he put him in prison, and delivered him to four quaternions of soldiers to keep him; intending after Easter to bring him forth to the people."
ANSWER: The Roman soldiers mentioned here were pagan, and the verse is speaking about them intending after their celebrated Spring Equinox or Easter to bring Peter out to be publicly killed. So the Bible is not endorsing Easter, but telling you the intentions of these pagan Roman soldiers.
Footwashing With Just One Person
QUESTION: How can someone who is by himself join the Lord's Supper when he has nobody to wash feet with?
ANSWER: The purpose of washing another's feet was to voluntarily humble yourself to do the work of a servant and serve one another. But if you are all alone and have nobody else to partner with in this service of humility, you have the option of either washing your own feet, which may even be more humbling than washing the feet of another, or you can simply skip the foot washing ceremony and still be able to partake of the Lord’s supper. God understands your situation, and if you are all alone through no fault of your own, then you can still partake of the Lord’s supper even though you have no one else to wash feet with.
Going Against the Holy Spirit
QUESTION: I do not understand how you can go against the Holy Spirit?
ANSWER: It is the work of the Holy Spirit to “reprove the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment” (John 16:8). This the Holy Spirit does by pricking our conscience that we are about to sin or have already sinned and broken God’s law. Should we resist this pricking of our conscience and go ahead and commit sin anyway or continue to live in sin, then we are actually going against the Holy Spirit working in our lives and are fighting against His efforts to lead us to live righteously.
If we persistently continue to resist the Holy Spirit’s efforts to reprove us of our sin, and of the correct way to live righteously, then eventually He will cease to convict us of our wrong actions, and then all we have to look forward to is the judgment sure to be visited upon us for our sins.
Having All Things in Common
QUESTION: In Acts, "All the believers were together and had everything in common. Selling their possessions and goods they gave to anyone as he had need (2:44-45). However in Luke, I also see the Zacchaeus gave only half his goods and the Judge Himself said he has now salvation. Kinda Confusing! Also, if we can give half of our things and still have salvation like Zacc.: in Acts 5 you read about Ananias and his wife who only gave some and not all, then died for it. Now I know they died moreover because they were greedy or simply lacked faith that God would provide for them. But added with the other scriptures I have shown here, it seems very important to give all to GOD.
So if you can, please help me with understanding all this. I cant seem to rap my head around all this. Thanks.
ANSWER: This passage in Acts 2:44-45 dealt with a specific plan back then that was developed by the Christian believers to help the gospel spread as fast as possible without being hindered through lack of money. This plan called for believers to sell all of their lands, houses, and possessions and then give all the money they received for these things to the church. Since these believers no longer had any possessions or money of their own, then the church promised to freely house, feed and take care of them for the rest of their lives.
The problem with Ananias and Sapphira was that they didn’t want to give all of their money to the church, yet still wanted the church to freely care for them. So they hid some of their money, and then donated the remaining amount claiming that this smaller amount was really the full amount they had received. This deception and lie cost them both the loss of eternal life!
This same plan of selling all and donating all to the church for free life care is not in force today among God’s Remnant people.
Regarding Zacchaeus: Christ did not require him to sell half of his goods and then give the proceeds to the poor, but it was a free-will offering that Zacchaeus decided to make on his own.
But the main point I see behind these questions of yours is what are we to give to God in order to have salvation? The simple answer is: Give Him your whole heart!
“And he answering said, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy strength, and with all thy mind; and thy neighbour as thyself. And he said unto him, Thou hast answered right: this do, and thou shalt live.” Luke 10:27-28.
“Sirs, what must I do to be saved? And they said, Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved, and thy house.” Acts 16:30-31.
This plainly tells us that no one can purchase salvation with any amount of money. This is because salvation is found only in Jesus Christ, and all that Jesus requires is for you to believe on Him with your whole heart.
“Ho, every one that thirsteth [for salvation], come ye to the waters [water of life = Jesus Christ], and he that hath no money; come ye, buy [for free], and eat; yea, come, buy wine [doctrinal truth] and milk [simple faith in Bible being word of God] without money and without price. Wherefore do ye spend money for that which is not bread? and your labour for that which satisfieth not? hearken diligently unto me, and eat ye that which is good, and let your soul delight itself in fatness. Incline your ear, and come unto me [Jesus Christ]: hear, and your soul shall live.” Isaiah 55:1-3.
Now regarding financial giving beyond just the tithes in order to further the Lord’s work: this is between you and the Lord. Some are impressed by the Lord to sell their houses, lands, possessions and donate the proceeds to those Remnant Ministries or ministers who are indeed preaching the full present truth. Some are impressed to hold on to their houses, lands and possessions, and to donate smaller amounts to further the work. So how much you willingly donate to further the work of God is between you and the Lord.
But of what value will houses, lands and possessions be to the people of God when the time comes where no one can buy or sell? This fact tells us that it would be better to enter into this time of no buying or selling without having any possessions of value left unsold, than it will be to be stuck with these valuable possessions and then be unable to sell them in order to finish the work.
Jesus Born the Son of Mary
QUESTION: I have a friend, who we both used to go to the same church before I learned the truth. She was right beside me as I learned much of that truth. But since I moved from Oklahoma, she has fallen into a ....dare I say it...cult. This denomination teaches that Christ was NOT actually the son of Mary, so He was NOT Jewish in any way shape or form, so those who believe in the new testament, don't have to follow the "Jewish" ways. I argued that He kept Jewish law, emphasized that we were branches from the same root.... tons of stuff. Much of which she agrees with. BUT.... she argues that to say that Jesus was the literal son of Mary, makes him less than God. I tried to explain that He had to be of the line of David, He had to be man, in order to do the sacrifice....amongst all the other things. But she still holds to this theory. I have read and read and can't seem to find the right scripture to combat this line of thinking. Please help me. She has a deep faith, but I can't seem to find the right words. I prayed and asked the spirit for help, and your name popped into my head. Have you heard of this movement?
ANSWER: No, I have not heard of this particular movement or doctrine. But the Scriptures are very plain that the Messiah and Anointed Christ of God was to be born through the linage of both Abraham (Genesis 22:15-18; Galatians 3:16) and David (Matthew 1:1) and this was to be “according to the flesh” (Romans 1:3). The flesh spoken of here can only be human flesh, because “God is a spirit” (John 4:24) and therefore “hath not flesh and bones” (Luke 24:39) like a human being has.
Hebrews 2:14-17 plainly tells us the reason why Jesus Christ chose to be born in human flesh:
“Forasmuch then as the children are partakers of flesh and blood, he also himself likewise took part of the same; that through death he might destroy him that had the power of death, that is, the devil; And deliver them who through fear of death were all their lifetime subject to bondage. For verily he took not on him the nature of angels; but he took on [him] the seed of Abraham. Wherefore in all things it behoved him to be made like unto his brethren, that he might be a merciful and faithful high priest in things pertaining to God, to make reconciliation for the sins of the people.”
Now the Almighty God was the real Father of Jesus Christ, but since God is Spirit and therefore could not pass on to Jesus human flesh so that He could carry out the plan of salvation, then this means that Jesus could only have obtained this human flesh from His human mother Mary! And since Mary was of Jewish linage, then she could only have provided Jesus Christ with human flesh of the linage of Abraham, David and Mary. This is why it was not just the ancestral line of Joseph, or Christ’s human step father, that was listed in the Scriptures, but was also the linage of Mary!! (Compare Joseph’s ancestral line in Matthew 1:1-16 with the ancestral life recorded in Luke 3:23-38 and notice the differences, then realize that “Heli” in Luke 3:23 had to be Mary’s father, which then made Joseph, Heli’s son, or more correctly his son in law).
This fact proves that Jesus Christ was indeed Jewish in the flesh, and chose to be born through the linage of Abraham and David in order to be “touched with the feeling of our infirmities” and to be “in all points tempted like as we are” (Hebrews 4:15), so that by His personal experience in overcoming all of these temptations, then Jesus would be “able to succour [comfort, help] them that are tempted” Hebrews 2:18.
Since “God cannot be tempted with evil” (James 1:13), and yet Jesus Christ was tempted like as we are, “yet without sin” (Hebrews 4:15), then this proves without a doubt that Jesus Christ did not live in His Godhood, but indeed lived in the Jewish human flesh He received from His mother Mary. That is why Jesus refers to Himself over and over again as the “Son of man”, and not just the “Son of God”. He was both at the same time in one Being. To believe that Jesus was only the Son of God and not also the Son of man destroys the plan of salvation. That’s why Jesus referred to himself as the Son of man some 30 times in the book of Matthew alone!
Now regarding the idea that since Jesus was Jewish, then all of His followers today must abide by Jewish laws and ways, this is not true.
When Jesus Christ died on the cross, the veil of the temple was torn in two (Mark 15:28). This signified that the old covenant of Jewish ordinances had been set aside and was no longer to be followed (Colossians 2:14), because a new and “better covenant...established upon better promises” (Hebrews 8:6) had now been established.
This new covenant was based upon the foundation that any and all people of the world can choose to accept Jesus Christ as their God and Saviour from sin, and thereby become adopted by the Almighty God into being His real sons and daughters (Galatians 4:4-7; Ephesians 1:5). This meant that no longer was there a difference between Jews and Gentiles regarding who was a real child of God, because Christ had “broken down the middle wall of partition between us...that he might reconcile both unto God in one body by the cross, having slain the enmity thereby” (Ephesians 2:14, 16).
So as Galatians 3:26-29 plainly tells us: “For ye are all the children of God by faith in Christ Jesus. For as many of you as have been baptized into Christ have put on Christ. There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither bond nor free, there is neither male nor female: for ye are all one in Christ Jesus. And if ye [be] Christ's, then are ye Abraham's seed, and heirs according to the promise.”
Journey to Heaven Takes 7 Days?
QUESTION: Does it say anywhere that when the saints are traveling to the city of God that this journey takes seven days, and that they will have to stop somewhere to keep the Sabbath?
ANSWER: I have not found this particular theory plainly stated anywhere in the Bible. But it is possible that the Bible does lend partial support to this theory, depending on how you interpret the 7th seal.
The 6th seal, found in Revelation 6:12-17, deals with the signs and events that occur just before Christ appears in the clouds of heaven. Therefore the following 7th seal must deal with events connected with Christ’s actual second coming.
The 7th seal is found in Revelation 8:1, and it plainly declares that “there was silence in heaven about the space of half an hour”. Since the 7th seal deals with actual events of the second coming of Christ, then this silence in heaven must mean that there are no beings remaining there as they have all joined Christ. And the Bible does indicate that when Christ comes He is accompanied with “all of the holy angels” (Matthew 25:31). But for how long is heaven to be empty and silent?
In Bible prophecy a day represents an entire year (Ezekiel 4:6; Numbers 14:34) composed of 360 days. As there are 24 hours in a day, so one prophetic hour would then represent 1/24th of a year – or 15 literal days. Thus ½ hour of prophetic time would represent 7 ½ literal days of time.
So if this particular interpretation of the 7th seal is correct, then the amount of time it takes Christ to leave heaven and appear in the clouds of earth, then raise the righteous dead (1 Corinthians 15:51-55) and together with the righteous living gather them off the earth to be with "the Lord in the air" (1 Thessalonians 4:16-17), as well as destroy all the wicked still living on the earth with “the brightness of his coming” (2 Thessalonians 2:8-12), begin travelling back home to heaven, and then at least for some of the angels (who can travel between heaven and earth in just a few moments -- see Daniel 9:3-23) to return safely back to heaven, and thus heaven is no longer silent as they prepare for the arrival of all the redeemed, must all occur within 7 ½ literal days.
If this is true, then one of these 7 days has to be a Sabbath in which no traveling could be done, since Christ Himself warned His people that they were to avoid traveling long distances on the Sabbath hours (Matthew 24:30).
So this is the interpretation of the 7th seal that deals with this theory of it taking a week of traveling, and having to stop somewhere in order to keep the Sabbath holy. This theory is definitely not a salvational issue, and thus it is not worth taking a strong stand over or allowing it to grow into an argument with those who interpret the 7th seal differently. If we are faithful, then we will see if this theory is true or not. So we will just have to wait and see.
Meaning of Isaiah 66:15-17 (Abomination and the Mouse)
QUESTION: What is "the abomination and the mouse" mentioned in Isaiah 66:15-17?
ANSWER: Since the abomination listed in this verse is connected with eating something, in this case eating mice -- which is forbidden by God, then the abomination mentioned here must also refer to eating other forbidden foods besides the mouse and swine’s flesh. Leviticus 11:10-23 lists other forbidden foods that are an abomination to God.
Meaning of Ezekiel 1:4-12
QUESTION: Please explain the four faces in Ezekiel 1:4-12: and are they talking about the four gospels?
ANSWER: I do not believe so, but the four gospels do figure into this vision.
Ezekiel describes seeing four living creatures, and each of these had four wings and four different faces – the face of a man, lion, ox and eagle. These four creatures are not separated from one another, but are closely linked and united together so that they all move in perfect harmony and without division (Ezekiel 1:11) while traveling as fast as lightning (Ezekiel 1:14). Ezekiel further describes these same four living creatures in Chapter 10 as being cherubs or angels whose bodies are full of eyes (Ezekiel 10:12).
Now Ezekiel declares that it is the Holy Spirit Himself who is the One that controls these four cherubs (Ezekiel 1:12), and further describes the Holy Spirit as being in the appearance of a man who was clothed in linen garments like a priest (Ezekiel 10:2), and who had a writters inkhorn by his side which he used to obey the Lord God’s command to place a mark upon the foreheads of those who sighed and cried for all the abominations taking place (Ezekiel 9:1-11).
Located closely beside each one of these cherubs are four “high” or gigantic wheels, which are also full of eyes all over (Ezekiel 1:18). Each one of these wheels is controlled by the particular cherub it is positioned by (Ezekiel 1:20). Yet when these angels controlled all these wheels, they came together and appeared like four wheels all joined and intricately working one within each other (Ezekiel 1:16) without hitting or conflicting against one another. So the picture Ezekiel sees and writes about shows that when the Holy Spirit desired these four cherubs to go somewhere, they immediately went, and since the cherubs controlled these four wheels, then the wheels also went along with them to perform their intricate work (Ezekiel 1:21).
Ezekiel further describes that above these four cherubs and their wheels was a throne of blue like a sapphire stone, and upon the throne sat the Lord God Himself who appeared as a man (Ezekiel 1:26, 10:1). The glory of the Lord God was like the appearance of fire, and the brightness cast abroad by this glorious fire bore the appearance of a rainbow (Ezekiel 1:27-28). Ezekiel also states that this throne of God, as well as the place where these four cherubs and wheels were located, was within the sanctuary or temple of God itself (Ezekiel 10:2-7).
So what I believe the vision Ezekiel saw and is describing here is depicting the control room of heaven. Overseeing all that takes place on the earth is the Lord God Himself seated on a throne. This throne was located within the temple or sanctuary itself, and since the sanctuary involves truths dealing with the entire plan of salvation for fallen mankind, then God is pictured here as overseeing all the different types of work involved in the spreading of His salvational messages of truth in trying and save mankind from death and destruction which are occurring at any given time in all the different countries, states, cities, towns, villages, homes, and especially in the hearts of human beings all across this world.
These four united cherubs along with their four high and gigantic interconnected wheels represents this great and high work of God taking place across this entire world, and as each angel and each wheel is all covered over with eyes, then nothing occurring in God’s great work on this earth escapes their notice, no matter how small.
Now the great work of these united cherubs is depicted by their wheels working within each other without conflicting or hitting together, and this working appeared so intricate and complex that it seemed as if all was in confusion. Yet their complex and intricate movements were absolutely in perfect harmony and unity so that they worked together without the slightest friction, flaw or mistake, and thus the work of God was able to move forward without any delay in accomplishing God’s perfect will in His perfect timing. This was only possible because the Holy Spirit was the One God directly in control of these four cherubs and their wheels, and above the Holy Spirit was the Lord God Himself overseeing all the work done.
I believe all of this was shown to Ezekiel, not just for his day alone, but especially for those of us who are living in these last days of earth’s history. This vision gives us today the assurance that God is indeed in control of His great work. As such then none of us need ever fear that God’s great work of salvation will ever fail to accomplish its purpose at the proper time, even though to our limited eyesight it may appear at times that little is being done to ever bring this work to completion.
I also believe this vision is a warning to those among us who might like to try and take control of God’s work and run it as we think best. This is because the work shown to Ezekiel was so complex and intricate that no human being could possibly ever be able to control it. That is why the vision clearly showed that only God – the Holy Spirit can control such an intricate and complex work for mankind’s salvation, and to make completely sure that there are no mistakes made in either effect or timing of the messages of truth, the Lord God Himself is overseeing it all.
Also, the vision did not depict just one wheel doing all the work. Neither did this vision depict these different wheels working separate and distinct from each another. But these four wheels were each united and working harmoniously together as one. Thus God was trying to teach His people – especially those of us living in these last days – that none of us can finish the work all by ourselves, no matter how energetic we may be, or how large our ministry might grow to. But instead we are all to be united and working together in order to try and finish this great work.
Therefore since none of God’s followers are capable of controlling God’s work in these last days, and none are capable of finishing this work by themselves, then all that we can do is to patiently continue to obey God’s commandments ourselves, humbly seeking to perform His will and faithfully filling the appointed lot and place which God has mercifully raised us up to do. But we are to also unite together and work in harmony and unity with all others that are standing upon the same platform of truth, avoiding all strife and conflict with one another so that the work moves smoothly forward. In this way we can indeed imitate the example of these angels and the wheels in their united and harmonious work of filling this entire earth with the knowledge of the plan of mankind’s salvation, which the Lord God Jesus Christ has made possible through His life, death, and resurrection.
So in regards to your question as to whether the four faces of each of these four angels represents the four different gospels: each of the four gospels clearly describes the four different types of the character and mission work of our Lord God Michael or Jesus Christ while He was a human being living on this earth. Each gospel shows that Jesus Christ was indeed a human born man, that He was the lion from the tribe of Judah, that He came to serve and minister to others just like an ox does, and that He came to bring healing, nourishment and shelter to mankind just like an eagle does to its chicks.
Therefore the four faces of these angels do not represent the four gospels, but they instead represent the four different types of character and mission work of our Lord Jesus Christ. But since these four angels did not have just one of these four faces each, but each angel had these four faces themselves, then it is possible that these four angels could in a way represent the four different gospels that clearly presented these four different characteristics of our Lord Jesus Christ. But this cannot be all that these angels represent, because they are involved in the entire work of God taking place throughout all this earth at any and all times and places.
Meaning of Amos 8:5,7 (Sabbath Breaking Remembered After Conversion)
QUESTION: What if a person used to be like Amos 8:5,7 describes, but now they are trying by God's grace to do as He says. Are their bad works still remembered?
ANSWER: “And the times of this ignorance God winked at; but now commandeth all men every where to repent” Acts 17:30. So all the times in the past when we were ignorantly breaking God’s holy Sabbath because we did not know any better will be mercifully forgiven by God when we finally understand the binding claims of His law and then humbly repent of our past sins and accept Christ as our Saviour. Jesus will then cover these confessed sins with His precious blood, and we are then forgiven and clothed with His righteousness.
But even though these sins are forgiven and covered by the blood of Christ, yet they are still listed in our record books until the time when we are judged. If at that time our record books show that we have remained faithful to Christ and the truth we knew, then these covered sins are forever blotted out and only a clean and righteous record book remains (Acts 3:19).
But if at that time of our judgment our record books show that after we had repented and accepted Christ we did not remain faithful, then none of our sins can continue to be covered by the blood of Christ or His righteousness, including the ones previously forgiven.
This then means that if those who already know about God’s law, and have “have tasted of the heavenly gift, and were made partakers of the Holy Ghost, And have tasted the good word of God, and the powers of the world to come, If they shall fall away, to renew them again unto repentance; seeing they crucify to themselves the Son of God afresh, and put him to an open shame” Hebrews 6:4-6.
“For if we sin wilfully after that we have received the knowledge of the truth, there remaineth no more sacrifice for sins, But a certain fearful looking for of judgment and fiery indignation, which shall devour the adversaries.” Hebrews 10:26-27.
So if you remain faithful to God to the end, then you will be saved (Matthew 10:22, 24:13). But if you give up the warfare and go back into sin, then you will be held responsible for every sin you ever committed throughout your lifetime. Solemn thought! But praise God that the plan of salvation has been devised, carried out, and is freely available to any and all who choose to accept this amazing gift. And thank God that you yourself have chosen to accept this gift of love!
Now “Therefore leaving the principles of the doctrine of Christ, let us go on unto perfection; not laying again the foundation of repentance from dead works” Hebrews 6:1.
Meaning of Matthew 16:28
QUESTION: Explain please Matthew 16:28: as I am confused about this verse: “Verily I say unto you, There be some standing here, which shall not taste of death, till they see the Son of man coming in his kingdom.”
ANSWER: Is this prophetic verse declaring that some will never taste death until Christ comes the second time? If so, then at least one of those standing there hearing these words of Christ would be nearly 2000 years old by now. As this cannot be true, then Christ must have meant something else by these words.
I believe that Christ simply meant that some standing around and listening to His words at that time would not taste of death until they saw in vision the Son of man coming in His kingdom. And since we know that the beloved disciple John indeed saw the coming of Christ in vision before he died (see Revelation 1:1, 7), then we know that John is at least one who fulfilled this prophetic saying of Christ in this verse.
Meaning of Mark 12:29 (Our Lord God is One)
QUESTION: Why does it say in the gospel “hear O Israel our Lord God is one”?
ANSWER: This is found in Mark 12:29 which states: “And Jesus answered him, The first of all the commandments is, Hear, O Israel; The Lord our God is one Lord.” In this passage Jesus was quoting from Deuteronomy 6:4. This meant that the one Lord God of the earth which this passage was referring to was actually Himself – the Lord God Michael – who was the One God that led the Israelites out of Egypt and into the promised land.
Yet this is not saying that Jesus is the only Lord God throughout the entire universe. Jesus was the representative of God the Father, who is the Almighty Lord God over all the universe. This means that the Father is a God, and also Jesus is a God. And in unity and connection with these 2 Gods is the Holy Spirit - who is also a God. This means that there are 3 distinct Gods in the Godhead, not just 1 God manifested in 3 different ways as the Babylonian Trinity doctrine teaches, but 3 distinct and individual Gods who are united together in one purpose – to make possible the plan of our salvation. Thus, just like the Apostle Paul states in Ephesians 4:4-6:
“There is one body, and one Spirit, even as ye are called in one hope of your calling; One Lord, one faith, one baptism, One God and Father of all, who [is] above all, and through all, and in you all.”
To those who believe in the Trinity doctrine of there being just one God, this verse seems to clearly back up their position. Yet when you take the time to examine what the Greek words mean, you will find that Paul was teaching just the opposite of the Trinity belief of just one God.
“There is...one Spirit”. The Greek word for Spirit used in this text is from Strong’s Exhaustive Greek Concordance, word #4151, and it translates “God” or “divine...Spirit”.
“There is...one Lord”. The Greek word for Lord used in this text is from Strong’s, word #2962, and it translates “God” “supreme in authority”.
“There is...One God and Father”. The Greek word for God used in this text is from Strong’s, word #2316, and it translates “God” “supreme Divinity”.
So putting all these meanings together, let us re-read the text:
“There is one body, and one God - divine Spirit, even as ye are called in one hope of your calling: One Lord God - supreme in authority, one faith, one baptism, One God - supreme Divinity and Father of all, who is above all, and through all, and in you all.” Ephesians 4:4-6.
So how many Gods does the Bible teach there are? Is it just one God as Trinity teaches? No. Is it only two Gods? No. The Bible teaches that there are three different Gods! God - the Father, who is supreme in Divinity; God - the Son Jesus Christ our Lord and Saviour, who is supreme in authority; and God - the divine Holy Spirit!
Now what about the other Bible texts which state that there is only one God - the Father? Well, this is absolutely true! But instead of going to the extreme interpretation and twisting these verses to teach that the Father is the only God in the entire universe, which then forces you to ignore, reject or deny the rest of the Scriptures which declare otherwise, let us seek to harmonize all the Scripture texts so that we get a full and complete picture of this truth.
There is indeed only one God whose name is the Father. And there is indeed only one God whose name is Jesus Christ. And there is indeed only one God whose name is the Holy Spirit. So instead of ignoring the scriptures which declare that there are three different Gods in heaven, let us understand that each of these three Gods have their own name, have their own Person and personality, and have their own particular work to do in our salvation.
That is why Christ declared this command to each and every follower:
“Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world.” Matthew 28:19-20.
If there was indeed only one God whose power alone was sufficient to keep all baptized followers safe from the Devil’s control and allow them to make it to heaven, then why did Jesus Himself state that His followers needed to be baptized in the name of 3 different Gods? It is because the divine powers of all 3 Gods in unity – being the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit – are necessary to successfully combat all aspects of sin in the life of Their followers which will then enable them to safely make it to heaven and gain everlasting life.
This means that if you are only baptized in the name of just one of these 3 God’s, then you would lack the divine power and authority of the other two in your life! So I hope you can see more clearly the reason why Jesus commanded all of His followers to be baptized in the names of all 3, and also why there is more than just one God in the Godhead!
Meaning of Romans 7:25 (Law of Sin)
QUESTION: I thought the 10 commandments are God's Law, put in place as a deterrent to sin. If my understanding of the 10 commandments being God's Law is correct, then what/or which is the law of sin, spoken of in Romans 7:25?
ANSWER: The word for “law” in this text is the Greek word “nomos”, and it translates and means “through the idea of prescriptive usage” (Strong’s Greek Concordance, word # 3551). Because Adam and Eve sinned, all of mankind are more prone to serve sin due to our fallen natures we inherited, than we are prone to follow God’s law. Thus we are more prescribed to sin – it is in our nature to follow “the motions of sins” (Romans 7:5) – even though we might know better. So with the mind we serve God, but if we allow the flesh and self to control us, then we will serve the ways or law of sin.
But praise God that He gives us the power to control self and the lusts of the flesh when we recognize our weakness, and then flee to Him for His grace and strength to help “in every time of need” (Hebrews 4:16)!
Meaning of Hebrews 9:10 (Until the Time of Reformation)
QUESTION: What is the meaning of "until the time of reformation" in the following verse: Hebrews 9:10: “Which stood only in meats and drinks, and divers washings, and carnal ordinances, imposed on them until the time of reformation”?
ANSWER: When Christ died the Old Covenant ceased as a requirement, and the New Covenant, “established upon better promises” (Hebrews 8:6), took its place. Thus the reformation of “Christ being come an High Priest” in the heavenly sanctuary (Hebrews 9:10-15) replaced the Old Covenant which had been nailed “to his cross” (Colossians 2:14).
Meaning of Revelation 1:4, 11 (7 Churches)
QUESTION: The 7 churches described in Rev. 1:4, 11 looks to be the "fruits" of each 7 churches, as described in the entire second and third chapters of Rev. But are these 7 churches, spoken of in Rev. 1:4, 11, literal & limited to only Asia, continent-wise? Or is "Asia", including its "7 churches", just allegorical/metaphorical?
ANSWER: These seven churches were literal in John’s time and were all located in Asia. But their messages apply to all Christians in every generation.
Meaning of Revelation 11:19 (Open Door Where into Sanctuary)
QUESTION: What does Rev 11:19 mean?
ANSWER: There were two doors or veils in the temple or sanctuary of God. One door was before the Holy Place or the first apartment (Exodus 26:36-37), and the other door was before the Most Holy Place or the second apartment (Exodus 26:31-34).
Also there were different articles in each apartment. In the first was the Candlestick of seven lamps of fire (Exodus 25:31-40), the Table of Shewbread (Exodus 25:23-30), and the Altar of Incense (Exodus 30:1-10). In the second apartment was the Ark of the Covenant (Exodus 25:10-22). And we are told that the arranging of this earthly temple or sanctuary was patterned after the actual arrangement of the heavenly temple or sanctuary (Exodus 25:9, 40; Hebrews 9:23, 8:5).
So then based upon this information, what door or veil was being opened in Revelation 11:19? What articles were seen? The Ark of the Testament or Covenant, which would show that this opened door was into the second apartment or the Most Holy Place. This then signaled that the antitypical Day of Atonement, whose services were connected with the Most Holy Place, had begun in this verse.
Prior to this time, Christ as our great High Priest (Hebrews 8:1-2) had been ministering in the first apartment ever since His ascension. You can clearly see this pictured in Revelation 4:1, where the door into the Holy Place or the first apartment was opened and the Candlestick of seven lamps of fire were seen (verse 5), as well as the Altar of Incense in Revelation 8:3. So Christ’s ministration in this first apartment began just after His ascension, and He continued ministering there until the 7th trumpet sounded (Revelation 11:19) and the door into the Most Holy Place was opened, which occurred on October 22, 1844 at the ending of the 2300 day/year prophecy of Daniel 8:13-14.
Meaning of Revelation 12:17
QUESTION: What is the meaning of Revelation 12:17: “And the dragon [satan] was wroth with the woman, and went to make war with the remnant of her seed, which keep the commandments of God, and have the testimony of Jesus Christ”? -- Who is the woman ?
ANSWER: The Protestant churches after 1798.
QUESTION: -- Who is her seed?
ANSWER: The offspring of the Protestant churches, or the Seventh-day Adventist Church.
QUESTION: -- Who is the remnant of the woman's seed?
ANSWER: The Remnant are those believers who have separated themselves from the SDA and Protestant churches, and who keep all 10 of God’s commandments. They are the last group or church of God’s faithful obedient people this world will ever see before Christ comes again.
Meaning of Revelation 19:10
QUESTION: What does Revelation 19:10 mean: “And I fell at his feet to worship him. And he said unto me, See thou do it not: I am thy fellowservant, and of thy brethren that have the testimony of Jesus: worship God: for the testimony of Jesus is the spirit of prophecy”? -- The testmony of Jesus is - His entire Word (OT and NT)?
ANSWER: Yes. It is the writings of all those prophets who have been inspired of God. Thus the Bible – where we find the law of God, and the Spirit of Prophecy, make up all of the Testimony of Jesus. That is why the Scriptures plainly declare that by these two things “the law and to the testimony” God’s followers are to use in comparison with any doctrinal teaching, and “if they speak not according to this word, it is because there is no light in them” (Isaiah 8:20).
QUESTION: -- What does it mean TO HAVE The Testimony of Jesus/The Spirit of Prophecy?
ANSWER: The Greek word “have” in this text is #2192 in the Strong’s Exhaustive Greek Concordance, and it means “to possess, to keep”. So to have the testimony of Jesus or the Spirit of Prophecy does not just mean to own, but it also means to keep or follow it.
Once Saved Always Saved?
QUESTION: Why do people believe in once saved always saved?
ANSWER: Some believe in this doctrine because they really believe it to be true, or because that is what their pastor has taught them. Others believe it because they either like to sin, or because they believe that they can never overcome sin, and yet they still want to be saved.
But all sin is the transgression of God’s law (1 John 3:4). And all sin or transgression of God’s law is unrighteousness (1 John 5:17). So then the keeping of God’s law must be righteousness and holiness, and the Bible declares that without holiness – or obedience to God’s law, “no man shall see the Lord” (Hebrews 12:14). So you can see that to believe you can sin and still be saved without overcoming that sin, is to believe a doctrine of devils because this idea is not founded in God’s word.
Now we know that God does provide to each and every person salvation as a free gift (Romans 5:14-21). But we also must remember that a gift, no matter how priceless, can always be refused, and also after being received can still be returned back to the giver at any time. This means that even “those who were once enlightened, and have tasted of the heavenly gift, and were made partakers of the Holy Ghost, And have tasted the good word of God, and the powers of the world to come, If they shall fall away” it would be “impossible...to renew them again unto repentance; seeing they crucify to themselves the Son of God afresh, and put him to an open shame” (Hebrews 6:4-6, see also Hebrews 10:26-29).
So dear ones, let us never return back the gift of salvation by denying our Lord after receiving Him, but instead let us patiently keep our hand to the plow moving forward towards heaven, and not turn or draw back to perdition (Luke 9:62; Hebrews 10:35-39).
QUESTION: What is (and what, in turn, is not) "open sin"?
ANSWER: Open sin means any known sin that is openly committed and continued to be committed without repentance. Examples of open sin would be knowingly committing adultery, fornication (or unmarried sex), incest, bigamy, polygamy, homosexuality, or other sexual sins, and then continuing in these openly known affairs and sinful practices. Other examples of open sin are knowingly eating or distributing for others to eat foods which the Bible clearly condemns, such as pork, all water crustations, all shell fish; etc. Or knowingly conducting business or having business conducted during the Sabbath hours thus breaking the sacredness of this holy day of God. Or any other known and continuiously practiced sin against any other of the commandments of God which can be seen in public. Any baptized follower who should be guilty of these types of open sins are not to be allowed to partake of the Lord’s Supper with God’s faithful, as to do so would make it appear that the church sanctions and blesses such sinful activities.
“But fornication, and all uncleanness, or covetousness, let it not be once named among you, as becometh saints; Neither filthiness, nor foolish talking, nor jesting, which are not convenient: but rather giving of thanks. For this ye know, that no whoremonger, nor unclean person, nor covetous man, who is an idolater, hath any inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and of God. Let no man deceive you with vain words: for because of these things cometh the wrath of God upon the children of disobedience. Be not ye therefore partakers with them. For ye were sometimes darkness, but now [are ye] light in the Lord: walk as children of light: (For the fruit of the Spirit [is] in all goodness and righteousness and truth;) Proving what is acceptable unto the Lord. And have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather reprove [them].” Ephesians 5:3-11.
Now the opposite of open sin would be those sins which are practiced in secret, and thus are not committed in public and therefore without public knowledge. Since these sins are unknown to the church, then these guilty ones cannot be excluded from partaking from communion, even though some might have discernment that something is wrong with them. God is the only one who knows what is truly in the hearts of all people, but there is not a single human being who has this divine ability. This means that we can only examine the fruits being produced by the actions of those we associate with, but we have no authority to say who can and who cannot partake of communion based just upon our own feelings, or prejudices, or discernment, or supposed insights into human nature, without such open fruits as these being seen that would thereby justify such exclusion.
Pass or Fail a Test
QUESTION: How do I know when I pass or fail a Trial?
ANSWER: A trial is any test of our faith – whether great or small. Anytime we are tempted to do any thing we know to be wrong, we are being tested and are under trial. Will we give in and commit sin and thus fail that test? Or will we do as James 4:7-8 states and flee to God for His help, submitting ourselves to doing His will, and then in His strength “resist the Devil” and overcome that temptation and gain the victory?
For example: Lets say your driving down the road, and someone unexpectedly turns into your lane and forces you to put on your brakes. Do you vent your anger in a barrage of heated words? Or do you quickly pray and give God your anger instead, and then remain calm and peaceful? The first reaction failed the test or trial of your faith, while the second reaction passed the test.
Now, what if someone vests their anger against you in a barrage of heated words. Do you respond back in the same heated exchange? Or do you quickly pray and allow God to take control, and instead remain quiet or calmly and softly respond back? Again, the first reaction fails the trial, while the second reaction passes.
Now what about watching TV programs that you know are bad to watch? Or how about listening to music that you know is bad and not good for your walk with the Lord? Or reading materials that are bad for your morals? Or eating in-between meals which hurts your digestive system? Etc. So tests and trials of our faith can occur many times in a day – especially the so-called smaller ones. But by always praying to God for help before you act, then nothing will be impossible for you together to overcome! (Matthew 17:20.)
Peace and Good WIll Toward Men
QUESTION: In Luke 2:14, it says: “ Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men.” What is meant by "good will toward men"? The word Men is generic – ALL men, meaning all people. However, the Croatian interpretation is usually (from corrupted bibles of course) - on earth peace TO (those) people (only) who are His favourites (meaning exclusivism). Or: on earth peace to those people who are cheerful, happy, those who are of goodwill (which would exclude the sick, the hungry, the suffering, afflicted etc, those who most need Jesus). And this cannot be right!
ANSWER: The Greek word for “good will” is “eudokia” (Strong’s word #2107), and it translates and means “satisfaction, delight, kindness, wish, purpose, good pleasure or good will, seem good.” Thus the birth of our Saviour into humanity was not a bad thing for all of the human race, but instead it was a good thing. This wonderful event showed the kindness, purpose and good will of the Almighty God of heaven which He wishes towards every human being without limitation. And this knowledge would in turn bring satisfaction, delight and good pleasure to all who realized what God was trying to do through allowing His Son to become human at that particular time in human history.
Probation Closed on My Church
QUESTION: How do we elaborate to others on how probation has closed on the church?
ANSWER: There is no Bible text which will plainly state in these words – “Probation for the Baptist, or Methodist, or Nazarene, etc., church is now closed, come out.” So then the only way to know for yourself that probation is really closed upon the church system is to examine the fruits being manifested by the church. Are they fruits of righteousness and/or repentance? Or are they fruits of rebellion and apostasy against God and His truth?
Christ has told us plainly that “by their fruits ye shall know them” (Matthew 7:20). Not maybe know them, or might know them; but ye SHALL know them, and the Holy Spirit will indeed lead and guide all who honestly desire to know the truth on this issue.
Salt of the Earth
QUESTION: What does this mean exactly – to be salt of the earth?
ANSWER: Salt is a seasoning that makes bland foods taste better and easier to endure. So then Christ, in Mark 9:50, was declaring that His followers needed to have salt in their lives, meaning that they were to live His life in their own; to do good in self-sacrificing deeds for the benefit of others. In doing so their influence would work to make this bland life better and easier to endure in the lives of others. But if they were just Christian in name only, then they are like salt that has lost its savor – which is worthless and of no benefit to anyone.
Satan Will Personate Christ for How Long?
QUESTION: How long will Satan personate Christ? Once Satan comes, will he then remain on the earth all the way until Christ comes?
ANSWER: I am not exactly sure how many days or months Satan will personate Christ on this earth. But from my studies of the Bible, especially Revelation 19 & 20, I do know that Satan will continue to personate Christ all the way until the real Lord Jesus Christ comes in the clouds of heaven.
At that time Satan will then be forced to watch as all of his many followers are destroyed by the brightness of Christ’s coming, and all of God’s followers taken off the earth to forever be with the Lord. Then Satan will be forced to remain all alone on this bare and desolate earth for 1000 years to dwell upon his foiled rebellious plans to take over and rule in heaven, and now his foiled rebellious plans to take over and rule on the earth, and also to ponder over all the evil and destruction he has caused for these 6000 years, and what his ultimate end will be.
After these 1000 years are ended, then Lucifer, along with all his followers raised back to life, will try the third time to try and rebelliously conquer God, but all their efforts will be useless as they all will be thrown into the lake of fire to be everlastingly destroyed into ashes (Revelation 20:7-15).
Selling All and Giving to the Poor
QUESTION: A brother elsewhere said I must sell all I own and give to the poor or I wont be right with God. He says this based on the rich young ruler in Luke 18. He also said that tithing was abolished when Jesus came and said to give it all. Now I read your article and have a better understanding that tithing is still very much in affect to this day. But are we called to sell all our things as Jesus said to in Matthew, Mark and Luke – in Luke He says that there is still one thing we lack?
ANSWER: No, although everything we have comes from God (Psalms 24:1, 51:10; Haggai 2:8; Psalms 116:12; 1 Chronicles 29:14; Proverbs 3:9; Deuteronomy 8:18) and is to be on the altar to be used at the proper time for His glory, yet Christ’s statement to sell all your possessions was directed specifically to the rich young ruler because his heart was fixed upon his possessions to the point that he relied more upon these things for his life than upon God or Christ. So all of his possessions needed to be sold and removed from him before his heart would be free to be given to Christ and to then depend solely upon Him for preserving of his life.
In this day and age, God will specifically impress His individual followers as to how much of their goods they are to sell at any given time if they have placed all on the altar for the glory of God and the spreading of His kingdom.
Seth Born in Adam's Image and Not God's
QUESTION: It says that “Adam lived an hundred and thirty years, and begat [a son] in his own likeness, after his image; and called his name Seth” Genesis 5:3. It says Seth was made in the image and likeness of Adam. Is this to say that only Adam was made in the image and likeness of God? Since Adam was born perfect, but later sinned, is that why Seth was born in Adam’s image and likeness and not God’s since sin is now in the picture?
ANSWER: Good question, and the answer is mostly yes. The Creator of Adam was God – specifically the Lord God Michael. As such, then Adam was created in the “likeness” or outward form of God, as well as in the “image” or the inward righteous character of God – although Adam’s character was not fully developed. Since Adam was directly created by God, then he was a “son of God” (Luke 3:38).
As Adam was in the likeness of God then all of Adam’s offspring, including us today, resemble this likeness of God (we all have legs, feet, hands, arms, a body, head, etc.). But we look like our parents in facial recognition, and not similar to Michael’s or Adam’s facial structure.
Now after sin, Adam’s nature was fallen, and thus he could not pass on the same perfect image of God’s righteous character, but only the image of the evil character of the author of sin – or Satan. But Michael/Jesus Christ chose to come down to earth, and was born a human being after the fall, thus becoming the son of man as well as the Son of the Almighty God. This was so that Michael/Jesus could experience all that humanity feels and goes through when they are tempted. Then by Jesus refusing to allow any of the tendencies to sin that are natural to the fallen nature of mankind to become part of His character, Christ has redeemed Adam’s failure and thus has given all of humanity the distinct privilege and honor to flee to Him in every time of need! Every one of us has the privilege of uniting ourselves with the divine nature of Jesus, so that we could then have all the power necessary to overcome all sin in our life just like Jesus did!
Should Writings of Church Fathers Be Enough for Doctrine?
QUESTION: Should we believe what the Fathers or Founders or Pioneers of the Church wrote as being the absolute truth?
ANSWER: My studied position is that all the writings of the Church fathers of any church, are not words that have been written under direct inspiration of God. Whereas those words that are found in the Bible and the Testimony of Jesus or the Spirit of Prophecy (Revelation 19:10) have indeed been written under the direct “inspiration of God”, and thus bear divine authority as to what is, or what is not, the truth (2 Timothy 3:16-17). This means that the writings of any of the Church fathers, Founders or Pioneers do not have the same inspired authority as does the Bible and the Spirit of Prophecy.
Without having such divine authority attending any of the writings of the Church Founders, then none of their writings can alone be used as absolute proof that a particular doctrinal position is the inspired true position to take. And for anyone to use only Pioneer writings as proof for a particular doctrine, and then lead others to believe that if they should reject this Church Founder's doctrine then they have actually rejected the truth and are in danger of being lost, is very extreme and is actually bordering on fanaticism. But this is what many do.
Since none of the Church fathers, Founders or Pioneers of any church are inspired, yet they were not dishonest in what they wrote because they honestly penned what they believed to be truth at that time. But without further inspired support from either the Bible or the Spirit of Prophecy, then their written positions on various doctrinal subjects bear only the weight of their personal opinions, and therefore should not be used alone as proof for taking the same doctrinal position they did. The only true foundational support for all doctrines comes directly from the Bible and the Testimony of Jesus (Isaiah 8:20), and not alone from the writings of anyone else – including the Church Founders or Pioneers.
So this is my position on the writings of any of the Church fathers, Founders or Pioneers. I respect their writings, but since what they wrote is not inspired – even though they believed God was inspiring them to write such words, then they are just giving their best studied opinion at that time on various doctrinal aspects, which could or could not be the truth. Again, it is only to the Law and to the Testimony where we find our true doctrinal positions to stand on, not to the Church Pioneers or to other writings of men, “for what is the chaff to the wheat?, saith the Lord” (Jeremiah 23:28).
Shroud of Turin
QUESTION: My question pertains to the "Shroud of Turin". I have always felt this is a deception. What is SDR's official position on the "Shroud of Turin"?
ANSWER: I cannot speak for the entire SDR Church or Movement. But I can tell you that the Shroud of Turin is a fake, and not really connected with Christ at all.
In John 19:40, it states that the body of Jesus was “wound in linen clothes”. But the Shroud of Turin is one long cloth about 12 feet long with an image on the front part and back part, like the cloth was laid on and then folded over a body length-wise, so it was not wound around the body.
Also in John 20:7 it states that Christ’s face covered with a napkin, and not connected with the linen grave clothes. But the Shroud of Turin has images of both the body and the face on the same piece of cloth. So it is clear that the image of that body seen in the Shroud of Turin cannot be that of Jesus Christ, and to say so is to deceive people with a fake.
The 70 Years of Babylonian Captivity
QUESTION: I am reading the study guide "Dream of Daniel 2". It is very good to say the least. I have a question on 2 Chronicles 36:19-21,Jeremiah 25:11-12, Daniel 9:2 and Zechariah 1:12. These 4 books speak of Jerusalem's desolation and the nations serving Babylon over a 70year period. What I am asking; if Jerusalem and the nations served Babylon for 70yrs as according to the verses I listed, how is it Babylon only reigned for 67yrs? Wouldn't Babylon have had to have reigned for 70years? Would 609BC have to be the official date of it's rule to equal 70yrs? Please share with me your views, for it is always important to have as best as we can 100% accuracy with God's time prophecies. Though it may seem small but we know nothing is small with Jesus Christ. God bless.
ANSWER: When Medo-Persia conquered Babylon, they did not destroy the capital city of Babylon, but took control over the city and its empire. They then decided to make Babylon their new capital city and began reigning from there. So you had Median or Persian kings – such as “Cyrus king of Persia” (Ezra 4:5) or “Darius king of Persia” (Ezra 4:5) or “Artaxerxes king of Persia” (Ezra 4:7) – reigning over the empire of Babylon and Persia from the conquered capital city of Babylon and thereby becoming its new king. That is why in Ezra 5:13 it refers to the ruling Persian kings as “Cyrus the king of Babylon”, or “Artaxerxes king of Babylon” (Nehemiah 13:6).
So even though the kingdom of Babylon was conquered some 3 or so years before the prophesied 70 year period of serving Babylon was over, yet the Israelites were still serving in Babylon, but now under Persian kings! In fact, it was these Persian kings that actually brought about the fulfillment of this prophecy of Jeremiah, by allowing the captive Jews to leave Babylon and return to Jerusalem and rebuild the temple and city.
Tithe for Church Building
QUESTION: Is it okay to give tithe for church building?
ANSWER: The answer is no. All tithe or “the tenth” of all income “is the Lord’s: it is holy unto the Lord” (Leviticus 27:30, 32), and God states in His word that this sacred tithe is to be devoted solely to the support of His living ministers in this earth.
Anciently, Abram gave “tithes of all” to Melchizedek who “was the priest of the most high God" (Genesis 14:18-20), and Melchizedek used it for his support and ministry in the work of God.
In the time of ancient Israel, the tithe was exclusively devoted to the use of the Levites, who were the priests or ministers of God. God specifically stated in Numbers 18:26, that all the tithes of the children of Israel were given to them for their inheritance, which they then used for their support and ministry work for God and His people.
In the time of the apostles, Paul states how God's tithe was to be used.
"Mine answer to them that examine me is this...Who goeth a warfare any time at his own charges? who planteth a vineyard, and eateth not of the fruit thereof? or who feedeth a flock, and eateth not of the milk of the flock? Say I these things as a man? or saith not the law the same also?...If we have sown unto you spiritual things, is it a great thing if we shall reap your carnal things?...Do ye not know that they which minister about holy things live of the things of the temple?...Even so hath the Lord ordained that they which preach the gospel should live of the gospel."1 Corinthians 9:3, 7-8, 11, 13, 14.
And so today, the tithe is still to be devoted to the support and maintenance of the living ministers who are preaching the present saving truth of God.
Now offerings, as well as free-will gifts and donations, can be used to build churches and supply all their necessary expenses in order to properly function as a house of God. But all the tithes are sacred and are to be strictly devoted and given out to those ministers who are preaching the full present truth gospel and who are working for the furtherance of the Lord’s cause in this earth.
Translating on the Sabbath Hours
QUESTION: Is translating Biblical tracts allowed on the Seventh-day Sabbath? I would say no, but need confirmation: so yes or no?
ANSWER: Yes, it is permitted under certain conditions because it is helping others to know the truth.
These conditions are: 1) - You cannot be compensated or paid for these translation services, or you would have broken the Sabbath by doing business. 2) - Doing translation work can not be in your normal line of work, as the Sabbath was meant for you to cease your normal weekly activities and worship God. 3) - The Sabbath is also to be for rest and re-cooperation from the exertion and stress of the previous six working days of the week. So if you are tired from a long week of mental or physical exertion, then it would be against the laws of health for you to over-exert yourself by doing translation work.
Unions Bringing On the Time of Trouble
QUESTION: Is it true that Unions will bring about the time of trouble?
ANSWER: We are warned in the Spirit of Prophecy that indeed Unions would indeed bring on the time of trouble. It is also not hard to imagine such occurring, especially in cases of emergencies. It only takes a few days, and in some cases just a few hours, for people to empty entire grocery stores of needed supplies. And then imagine what would occur if these same stores cannot be restocked because of striking Union workers!
Was Eli Really Lost?
QUESTION: Was Eli the priest lost, due to his NOT restraining his sons Hopni and Phinehas?
ANSWER: Yes, because in 1 Samuel 3:12-14 it plainly declares “that the iniquity of Eli's house shall not be purged with sacrifice nor offering for ever”.
When Are the 144,000 Made Up?
QUESTION: My question is: Do the 144,000 come after it's legal to kill Christians? For instance the Mark of the Beast becomes enforced and Christians then die till only 144,000 left?
ANSWER: Inspiration tells us several things about the 144,000. Revelation 7:3-4 tells us that the 144,000 are God’s servants and have His seal upon them. In Revelation 7:4 it states that John heard the number of them that were sealed, and there were only sealed 144,000 living saints. In Revelation 14:4-5 it tells us that they were not defiled with women. Women in this verse does not mean literal women, but symbolically represents churches (see Jeremiah 6:2; Ezekiel 16:2-63). So these 144,000 are not defiled by corrupt and apostate churches – meaning they had separated out of them all. These 144,000 saints were also without fault – meaning that they had perfected their characters through the blood of the Lamb and the word of their testimony. It also states in Revelation 7:14 that these 144,000 had all come out of great tribulation, and in verse 16 it states that they endured the time of the plagues.
All these verses reveal to us that all 144,000 saints are sealed in just one generation, that they remain alive and do not die, and that this is a literal number which will be made up before probation closes and the plagues fall. Thus all 144,000 have an experience such as no other group of God’s followers have ever had.
Now when will people be sealed into the 144,000? Any time within one generation 144,000 people fulfill all the conditions to be in this special group. This has not yet occurred, but once this does occur, then Christ will see that His bride (church) has made herself ready, probation for the world will then close, and Christ will then come to get his bride and take her home. This sealing, of course, could take place at any time, and therefore does not need the enforcement of the Sunday law to begin before anyone can be sealed into this special group. But I believe that probably the majority of the 144,000 will be sealed after the Sunday law is enforced as that will be a great test of character for most.
Since the 144,000 do not die after being sealed since they are still “alive and remain” at the coming of the Lord (1 Thessalonians 4:16-17), then those followers of Christ who are not in this special company, but who are still faithful to God, will be allowed to either fall asleep in Christ, or will suffer martyrdom and “die in the Lord” (Revelation 14:13) at the hands or governments of the wicked. So by the time probation closes upon the earth, there will be only two groups of people: those who are for God – being the 144,000 saints, versus all the rest of the world – being those who follow Satan.
Who Do We Pray To?
QUESTION: Who do we address when we ask for forgiveness of sins?
ANSWER: Christ stated in Matthew 6 that we are to address God the Father since He is the highest authority in heaven. But Christ is also a God, and He has also been exalted to sit with the Father on His throne (Psalms 110:1; Hebrews 1:13, 8:1; Acts 2:32-33). Therefore we can also ask Christ for forgiveness of our sins – just like many people had their sins forgiven by Christ when He was on this earth (see Matthew 9:2-6; Luke 7:47-48; Acts 5:31). So since Jesus Christ was the Lord God Michael in human flesh, and Michael was the God who continually forgave the repentant Israelites their sins for some 1500 or so years, so Jesus will still hear those who pray to Him for forgiveness.
Who is Jehovah?
QUESTION: I have a question in my mind which I haven't answered yet for a long time. Its been a dilemma for me, and it is about who really Jehovah is? Is He Christ or God the Father? The Jehovah's Witnesses says that He is the Father and not Christ. But in my own understanding He is Christ. Am I correct?
ANSWER: The word Jehovah refers to the eternal God (Strong’s Hebrew Concordance, word #3068). And as both the Father and Jesus Christ are a God and are therefore eternal, then this word Jehovah can refer to either the Father or to Jesus Christ.
One interesting and amazing fact about this is that the word Jehovah was the Jewish national name for the God which led them out of Egypt and into the promised land, and we know that this Lord God was actually Michael – who became Jesus Christ when He was born into humanity (1 Corinthians 10:1-10). This means that Jehovah was applied more times to Michael/Jesus Christ than to the Father in the Old Testament Scriptures. And further, this then sadly means that the Israelites rejected their own eternal Lord God when they rejected Jesus and instead chose Barabbas (Matthew 27:21) and then Caesar (John 19:15)!
Will Everyone Hear the Loud Cry?
QUESTION: In todays sermon, we were talking about the loud cry (Revelation 18:1-5), and how it would go out to all the world. So I was wondering, will all the people of the world hear the message before Christ comes back?
ANSWER: Yes, all the people of the world will have a precious opportunity to hear the last message of salvation. This is because Jesus plainly declares in Matthew 24:14 that “this gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in all the world for a witness unto all nations; and then shall the end come”.
Year in Bible Prophecy is Only 360 Days
QUESTION: Why is a year in Bible prophecy only composed of 360 days and not 365?
ANSWER: In Bible prophecy, each month has only 30 days. This is proven in Genesis 7:11 & 8:4 where it declares that the waters of the flood were upon the earth for a total of 5 months. Then in Genesis 7:24 it declares that the waters of the flood were upon the earth for a total of 150 days. So 150 days, divided by 5 months, would equal 30 days for each month. Thus in Bible prophecy a year is only composed of 360 days (12 months, times 30 days), and not 365.24 days.