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Revelation Bible Study – Part 20

Revelation Bible Study Notes & Aids

The Great Tribulation – Part 3

Mark 13:14-23 (ESV)

The Abomination of Desolation

14 “But when you see the abomination of desolation standing where he ought not to be (let the reader understand), then let those who are in Judea flee to the mountains. 15 Let the one who is on the housetop not go down, nor enter his house, to take anything out, 16 and let the one who is in the field not turn back to take his cloak. 17 And alas for women who are pregnant and for those who are nursing infants in those days! 18 Pray that it may not happen in winter. 19 For in those days there will be such tribulation as has not been from the beginning of the creation that God created until now, and never will be. 20 And if the Lord had not cut short the days, no human being would be saved. But for the sake of the elect, whom he chose, he shortened the days. 21 And then if anyone says to you, ‘Look, here is the Christ!’ or ‘Look, there he is!’ do not believe it. 22 For false christs and false prophets will arise and perform signs and wonders, to lead astray, if possible, the elect. 23 But be on guard; I have told you all things beforehand.

The Tribulation is a future time period when the Lord will accomplish at least two aspects of His plan:

  • 1) He will complete His discipline of the nation Israel (Daniel 9:24), and 2) He will judge the unbelieving, godless inhabitants of the earth (Revelation 6 – 18).
  • Within eschatology (the study of future things), the Tribulation refers to the full seven-year period while the “Great Tribulation” refers to the second half of the Tribulation.

A manifestation of God’s wrath using Satan and mankind as the instruments of divine. Rev. 5:6-9; 6:1, 3, 5, 7, 9, 12; 8:1); Isaiah 24:1-13; 26:21; Daniel 9:24-27; Joel 1:15; Zeph. 1:18; Revelation 6:1-17; 11:18; 14:7, 10, 19; 15:4, 7; 16:1, 7, 19; 19:1-2.

Names Used of the Tribulation

(1) Jacob’s trouble or distress (Daniel 9:24-27)

(2) Daniel’s 70th week (Daniel 9:24-27)

(3) A time of trouble or distress (Daniel 12:1)

(4) The great day, the one of their wrath (Rev. 6:17)

(5) Hour of testing which shall try the whole earth (Rev. 3:10)

(6) The indignation (Isaiah 26:26)

(7) Tribulation and the Great Tribulation
(Matthew 24:9, 21, 29; Mark 13:19, 24; Rev. 7:14)

(8) The Day of the Lord (Joel 1:15; 2:1; 1 Thess. 5:2)

Reasons for the Great Tribulation

1.  Harvest – Matt. 13

2.  Satan is false – Isa. 14:12–15

3.  To prepare a great martyred – Rev. 7:9, 14

4.  To prepare a multitude for the Millennium  – Matt. 25:32

5.  To punish the Gentiles – Rom. 1:18; 2 Thess. 2:11–12;
Rev. 19:15

6.  To purge Israel  – Ezek. 20:23, 38; Zech. 13:8–9; Mal. 3:3
Zechariah 13:7–9

Key Players:

Unbelievers: Rev. 3:10; 1 Thess. 1:10; 5:9).

Jews and Gentiles: 1 Cor. 10:32; Gen. 10; 11; 12; 2 Sam. 7:12-16; Rom. 3:9, 19; 11:1-32; Luke 21:24.

144,000 Bondservants of God: 12,000 Jews from each of the twelve tribes.

The Two Witnesses: maybe Moses and Elijah but the Bible does not say. Revelation 11:1–14 (NKJV) 

Satan and his Demons: Rev 9:1-11; 12:3-17; 16:13-14; 13:2.

  • All the lawlessness, the murders, drugs, wars and blasphemies of this period are a result of satanic activity in conjunction with the degeneracy of man (2 Thess. 2:9-12).

Antichrist—a false prophet and evil being who will set himself up against Christ and the people of God in the last days before the Second Coming. 1 John 2:18

  • Satan’s deception began in the Garden of Eden (Gen. 3) “God cannot be trusted”… “You can be like God”
  • The Dragon (or Serpent) of Revelation 12 is Satan
  • That work reaches its climax in the Antichrist – Rev. 13:4
  • The idea of Satan working through the Antichrist is clearly rooted in the prophecies of Daniel. – Dan. 7:7-8; 7:11; 7:13-14.
  • The Antichrist will be the sum total of the beasts referred to in Daniel 7 (Rev. 13:1-17).
  • The Antichrist makes war against Christ and His army, but he is captured and is “cast alive into the lake of fire burning with brimstone” (Rev. 19:20).
  • The devil, the Beast (or Antichrist), and the False Prophet form a kind of unholy trinity, counterfeiting Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.
  • The Antichrist is also called the lawless one (v. 9) who, empowered and inspired by Satan, will lead the final rebellion against God (v. 3) but will be destroyed at the coming of the Lord.

False Prophet: is religious and promotes the ministry and person of the beast (Rev. 13:11-18).

The Fallen Angels and Michael and His Angels: Rev. 12:7.

The Lord Jesus Christ, Rev. 4; 5; and 19.

The Bride of Christ, Rev. 19:7f

The Great Harlot, Religious Babylon: one-world religious system – Rev. 17

The Merchants of the World: Rev. 18

The Ten Nations of Europe: Rev. 17:12.

The Kings of the East: Rev. 16:12f. – an oriental block of nations who will march across the Euphrates River when it is miraculously dried up.

The Time of the Tribulation

The Tribulation occurs after the removal of the church (1 Thess. 4:13-18; 5:l-9) and is followed by the 1,000 year reign of Jesus Christ (Rev. 20:1-4; Ezek. 20:33-38; Matt 24 and 25).

The Purposes of the Tribulation

  • For Israel: Jer. 30:7 it is a time to discipline Israel, prepare her for restoration and regathering Matt. 23:37-39; Ezek. 20:33-38; Zech. 12:10; Jer. 30:1-17)
  • For the Nations: divine judgment -Zech. 1:15-21; 12:3f; 14:3; Joel 3:2; Jer. 30:8, 11, 16
  • In Relation to Satan: Matt. 25:41; Rev. 12:7-12; 20:1-3; Isa. 14:12-17; Ezek. 28:12-19
  • In General: open judgment- Zeph. 1:15- 18; Joel 3:12-14; Rev. 6:16-17).

In Relation to God: demonstrate that God is holy, righteous, just, and still on the throne. That He has not ignored man’s rebellion or sin 2 Pet. 3:4-9

——————————————-

“Where the Bible makes plain sense,
seek no other sense,
lest you turn it into nonsense”.

The ESV® Bible (The Holy BibleEnglish Standard Version®) is adapted from the Revised Standard Version of the Biblecopyright Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the U.S.A. All rights reserved. https://www.crossway.org/


A Nation Who Rejects God is Doomed

Note: this message takes many points and notes from a message by John MacArthur to which I’ve added my own thoughts and teaching. Here is MacArthur’s original message: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t5vAA_QpNh8

This my message Sunday morning Oct 11 on this topic.

John 19:11 Jesus answered, “You would have no authority over Me, unless it had been given you from above; for this reason he who delivered Me to you has the greater sin.”

  • Nations are obligated to follow the true God or suffer dire consequences
  • Not just Christians, or “Christian nations”, all nations

No Other Gods
Exodus 20:3 You shall have no other gods before[a] me. 4 “You shall not make for yourself a carved image, or any likeness of anything that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth. 5 You shall not bow down to them or serve them, for I the Lord your God am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers on the children to the third and the fourth generation of those who hate me, 6 but showing steadfast love to thousands[b] of those who love me and keep my commandments.

There’s only one God, only one true God.

  • All humanity is commanded to worship that one true God, and the fundamental reason, the fundamental plan of God, as far as nations are concerned, is to bless the nations that acknowledge Him as the true God.

Judgment becomes inevitable because when you turn from the one true God you therefore turn from His law; and when you turn from His law:

  • reverence is gone,
  • morality is gone,
  • fear is gone,
  • virtue is gone,
  • and God is gone.

Acts 14: “God has allowed all the nations to go their own way.” It’s the way of destruction.

That’s the cycle of the history of nations.

  • From bondage to spiritual faith.
  • From spiritual faith to great courage.
  • From courage to liberty.
  • From liberty to abundance.
  • From abundance to selfishness.
  • From selfishness to complacency.
  • From complacency to apathy.
  • From apathy to dependency.
  • From dependency back again into bondage

That’s what Paul’s talking about in

  • Romans 1:21 “They knew God, they glorify Him not as God, and the wrath of God was unleashed on them. God gave them over to lusts and impurity; gave them over to unlawful degrading passions, women with women, and men with men; gave them over to a depraved mind, and they heartily approved behaviors that they knew led them to judgment.”

God gave us the 10 Commandment and Government for a Reason

Three uses for the law of God:

  1. To show the sinner what holiness was like so the sinner could see how far short he falls, be convicted and repent personally, and receive the salvation that God offers through Christ.
  2. Too become the standard for believers’ behavior as they walk in sanctification and holiness.
  3. To restrain sin in society.

JC Ryle said about England: “In what manner God would punish England if English government casts off all connections with Him. I cannot tell whether He would punish us by some sudden blow such as defeat in war and the occupation of our territory by a foreign power, whether He would waste us away gradually and slowly by loss of commercial prosperity, whether He would break us to pieces by letting fools rule over us and allowing parliament to obey them, whether He would ruin us by sending a dearth of wise statesmen. But one thing I am sure: the state that sows the seed of national neglect of God will sooner or later reap a harvest of national disaster and national ruin.”

There is no god except the God of the Bible.

  • There is no true morality but the morality of the Bible.
  • There’s no true worship but the worship of the true and living God, the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ.
  • There is no personal blessing apart from Him
  • There is no national blessing apart from honoring Him
  • There is no way to Him except through Jesus Christ.

Removing the worship of the true God is a disaster to a nation.

  • First things we must do is Timothy 2:12, Paul said, “First of all, then, I urge that entreaties and prayers, petitions and thanksgivings, be made on behalf of all men, for kings” – rulers – “all who are in authority, so that we may lead a tranquil and quiet life in all godliness and dignity.”

For that to happen we have to pray for the leaders who are in authority,

  • Pray that they will submit to God:
  • Pray they would be saved

When God and Christ in Scripture are dishonored in a nation there will be violence, there will be a sea of lies, wickedness abounding, and shame.

  • There will not be a tranquil, peaceful life in all of godliness and dignity. Joshua 24:20, “If you forsake the Lord and serve foreign gods, then He will turn and do you harm and consume you after He has done good to you.”
  • There’s no question that God has done good to our nation; but He will consume this nation if it stays on the path it’s on.

Removing the worship of the true God, removing the authority of His Word, the voice of the church, the moral education of children and youth, removing the gospel because it’s too offensive is the path to national destruction.

Listen to how broad the Bible says worship of the true God is:

  • Psalm 33:8, “Let all the earth fear the Lord; let all the nations of the world revere Him.”
  • Psalm 117:1, “Praise the Lord, all you nations; and extol Him, all you peoples!” Now that has to come from leadership.
  • Psalm 72:11 says, “Let all kings bow down before Him, and all nations serve Him.”

All kings, all nations.

Jonah 3: The People of Nineveh Repent

God declared DOOM on a pagan nation who rejected Him

  • This is not about personal salvation; this is God’s principle that He blesses nations who recognize Him, and judges nation who reject Him

Daniel, Nebuchadnezzar & Belshazzar

Daniel 4–5:  Nebuchadnezzar who thought himself to be God, and he was turned into a beast. Belshazzar elevated himself and God judged him.

God is the same God today.

Immutable: unchanging over time or unable to be changed.

  • This puts a huge burden on leadership of a country.
  • A lot of people are pursuing political power.
  • You should be cautious of that because God holds you to account

Proverbs 29:2, “When the righteous increase, the people rejoice; when a wicked man rules, people groan.”

  • Have you been groaning? “When a wicked man rules, people groan.”

A “Country Changing” Election is Near

  • Two distinct and opposite ideologies are wanting your vote
  • Both sides have the common problems of fiscal insanity and degrading morality
  • One side wants to take us there immediately and openly rejects God
  • The other side still believes in law and order

As election day nears, we must consider what the Bible — which equips for every good work (2 Timothy 3:17) — says about civil ruler qualifications.

Rulers must be fear God to be Just

2 Samuel 23:3–4 (ESV) 3 The God of Israel has spoken; the Rock of Israel has said to me: When one rules justly over men, ruling in the fear of God, 4 he dawns on them like the morning light, like the sun shining forth on a cloudless morning, like rain that makes grass to sprout from the earth.

Proverbs 17:7, “Excellent speech is not fitting for a fool, much less lying lips to a ruler.”

  • Are you not weary of lying people in power?
  • Proverbs 20:28 says, “Loyalty and truth preserve the king.”

To be a virtuous ruler, to lead a nation that God will bless, a leader must:

  • worship the true God,
  • must conduct his life and his affairs on behalf of the country with righteousness, justice, wisdom, honesty, morality.
  • He must be humble.
  • He must be a protector of those who need protection.
  • He must have courage.

A person who has character, conviction, virtue, righteousness, wisdom, honesty  and courage will be very careful with power;

  • As opposed to most of our political leaders today want power at all costs, and will do anything to keep it, and enrich themselves through it

There is no other way to distinguish a good ruler from a bad ruler. It’s not personality.

  • God’s standards are the only way to distinguish a good ruler from a bad one.

Short of national revival of the Gospel and a nation wide repentance, it is unlikely we will ever have Godly leaders again.

Despite the patriotic, fiscal and civil good the current President has done, which is a good thing… we’ve seen no repentance, humility, increasing morality or a declaration of national recognition of God (not government forced recognition, voluntary recognition)

Is there an ideal king?

A King will come who will reign righteously, and He will establish His kingdom – none other than the Lord Jesus Christ.

Psalm 67:1–7 (ESV)  1 May God be gracious to us and bless us and make his face to shine upon us, Selah   2 that your way may be known on earth, your saving power among all nations.   3 Let the peoples praise you, O God; let all the peoples praise you!   4 Let the nations be glad and sing for joy, for you judge the peoples with equity and guide the nations upon earth. Selah   5 Let the peoples praise you, O God; let all the peoples praise you!   6 The earth has yielded its increase; God, our God, shall bless us.   7 God shall bless us; let all the ends of the earth fear him!


Revelation Bible Study – Part 19

Revelation Bible Study Notes & Aids

The Great Tribulation – Part 2

Mark 13:14-23 (ESV)

The Abomination of Desolation

14 “But when you see the abomination of desolation standing where he ought not to be (let the reader understand), then let those who are in Judea flee to the mountains. 15 Let the one who is on the housetop not go down, nor enter his house, to take anything out, 16 and let the one who is in the field not turn back to take his cloak. 17 And alas for women who are pregnant and for those who are nursing infants in those days! 18 Pray that it may not happen in winter. 19 For in those days there will be such tribulation as has not been from the beginning of the creation that God created until now, and never will be. 20 And if the Lord had not cut short the days, no human being would be saved. But for the sake of the elect, whom he chose, he shortened the days. 21 And then if anyone says to you, ‘Look, here is the Christ!’ or ‘Look, there he is!’ do not believe it. 22 For false christs and false prophets will arise and perform signs and wonders, to lead astray, if possible, the elect. 23 But be on guard; I have told you all things beforehand.

The Tribulation is a future time period when the Lord will accomplish at least two aspects of His plan:

  • 1) He will complete His discipline of the nation Israel (Daniel 9:24), and 2) He will judge the unbelieving, godless inhabitants of the earth (Revelation 6 – 18).
  • Within eschatology (the study of future things), the Tribulation refers to the full seven-year period while the “Great Tribulation” refers to the second half of the Tribulation.

TROUBLE AND SORROWS

  • Jesus gives the sign that will identify this period of time. Matthew 24:15–44 (NKJV)    
  • What is the abomination of desolation? Daniel 11:31; Dan. 12:11, an image of Antichrist which will be set up in the temple; speaking of the temple rather than the church, because the church has no holy place.

“whoever reads, let him understand” which means the people who are living at that time will understand.

  • This will not be a time to sit around and wait to see what happens; it’s time to get out of Dodge and HIDE, get away from population centers
  • Things will get so bad so fast, that worrying about your property or belongings will be a waste of time and foolish
  • If you are at work, don’t be concerned with going back to get anything from your home. Just run!
  • It will be particularly difficult and tragic for expectant mothers and those with little babies to protect and care for

Revelation 7:14 the literal translation is “the tribulation the great one,” for emphasis; this tribulation is unique.

  • Notice that our Lord is the One who labels the end of the age as the Great Tribulation. If this prophecy was fulfilled in the 1st century by the Romans invading Jerusalem and destroying it, Jesus is guilty of false prophecy or gross over exaggeration

THERE WILL BE NO DOUBT IN ANYONE’S MIND THAT THIS IS BEING FULFILLED WHEN IT HAPPENS… that’s how we know that it has never been fulfilled!

  • We read in the Book of Revelation that during the Tribulation one third of the population of the earth will be destroyed; on another occasion one–fourth of the population will be destroyed.
  • However, there is comfort in this verse—“but for the elect’s sake those days shall be shortened.” God will not let mankind commit suicide. That is the reason this will be such a brief period.

JESUS ASSURES THEM CONCERNING HIS COMING

One big reason the ability to work miracles in our day should be looked upon with suspicion because the next great miracle worker will not be Christ; he will be Antichrist with his false prophets.

  • “If it were possible they shall deceive the very elect.” Who are the elect? In the Scriptures there are two elect groups: the elect of the nation Israel and the elect of the church.
  • When we simply take Scripture at face value (“the Church” means the Church, and “Israel” means the people and nation of Israel unless the passage CLEARLY defines otherwise, then the Bible remains literal and plain, rather than forcing us to take much of it as conceptual, symbolic and spiritual

Who has Jesus been talking about up to this point? Israel.

  • When He comes, there will not be any John the Baptist to announce Him.
  • When He comes, the whole world will know and it will be as public as lightning.
  • When Jesus comes the second time, with the angels and His Bride The Church, to establish His Kingdom on earth, everyone will know He is coming.

28 For wherever the carcass is, there the eagles will be gathered together.    Two things to consider here:

  • First, it is a sign, a pointer, the evidence of that something is happening and where it is happening…
  • Could also refer to Christ’s coming in judgment: Revelation 19:17–19; birds that feed on carrion seem to be agents of divine judgment.

“Immediately after the tribulation of those …” like at a show when the lights go down, and the music starts

“Then the sign of the Son of Man will appear in heaven”; In the Old Testament, the nation Israel was given the glory, the Shekinah presence of God. No other nation or people has ever had that, nor does the church have it.

“they will see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of heaven with power and great glory.”

This is His return to earth to set up His kingdom. There will be no mistaking it.

“they will gather together His elect from the four winds”

  • The elect spoken of in this verse is still the nation Israel. The prophets in the Old Testament foretold of a miracle that would bring the Jews back into their land.
  • When has the Church ever been gathered back into its “promised” land? This speaks of Israel
  • Again, taking the Bible plainly and literally keeps all this from being confusing
  • Jesus doesn’t need angels to gather the Bride for Him… we are waiting expectantly and will be instantly snatched away to be with Him
  • When Jesus says that the “angels … shall gather together his elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other,” we can be sure that He is talking about the nation Israel, not the Church will already be with Jesus as His Bride.

THE PARABLE OF THE FIG TREE AS A SIGN

  • Fig trees grow in abundance in Israel; fig trees and grapevines identify the land; the fig tree is a symbol.
  • A generation is about twenty years, and certainly the predicted events will take place in a much briefer time.
  • Most likely it refers to either one.
  • “Heaven and earth will pass away” Jesus puts on an exclamation point, a double
  • “But of that day and hour no one knows”   No one will know the specific day and hour but just like people in Noah’s day knew for a hundred years judgment was coming, all of creation will know time is drawing near 

Christ will come in a day which will be like the days of Noah.

  • The population before the Flood was CONSERVATIVELY six to eight billion, the same as today; every imagination of man’s heart was only evil continually (see Gen. 6:5).
  • “Eating and drinking” and “given in marriage”. Living as though God did not exist. Living as if nothing mattered except their physical desires and self-gratification.
  • “marrying and giving in marriage.” getting married implies that you think there is a future ahead
  • They did not believe that He would judge them and scorned the warning that a flood was imminent.“ and did not know until the flood came and took them all away, so also will the coming of the Son of Man be

40 Then two men will be in the field: one will be taken and the other left.   41 Two women will be grinding at the mill: one will be taken and the other left.

  • Seems to refer to the Rapture, and many Christians use this verse as such; “well it says right there that….”
  • Pulls the verse out of context… there is nothing about the Rapture in this passage… it’s talking about the DAYS OF NOAH and judgment
  • The meaning here is that some will be judged and some will not. God’s judgment will fall on those who are unsaved even as they are standing next to something who is saved

“Watch therefore, for you do not know what hour your Lord is coming.”  

  • Today we are to wait and long for His coming as our Blessed Hope, the return of the Groom for His Bride
  • In that future day they will watch with anxiety for His return because they will be anxious for the horrible times to be over

The remainder of the Olivet Discourse is giving parables to illustrate the attitude of folk to His coming and what will happen when He does come.

“Blessed is that servant whom his master, when he comes, will find so doing”

This parable reflects the attitude of some folk in that future day.

  • “The Lord delays His coming, I’ll just live carelessly.”
  • When Christ returns, He will judge that man.
  • You and I ought to live our lives in the light of the fact that we are to stand in the presence of Christ.
  • Regardless of whether Christ comes a hundred years from today or a thousand years, you and I will stand in His presence.
  • Whether you are saved or lost, you will stand in His presence.
  • If you are saved, you will have to give Him an account of your life to see if you receive a reward.
  • If you are lost, you will stand there to be judged.
  • Therefore, every person should live his life in light of the fact that he is to stand in the presence of the Lord.
  • This is the great MESSAGE of Jesus from the Mount of Olives.

While not specifically written to US, the Bride, the Church, it certainly has application to us.

——————————————-

“Where the Bible makes plain sense,
seek no other sense,
lest you turn it into nonsense”.

The ESV® Bible (The Holy BibleEnglish Standard Version®) is adapted from the Revised Standard Version of the Biblecopyright Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the U.S.A. All rights reserved. https://www.crossway.org/


Book of John – Message 39 John 8:33-47

John 8:33–36 (ESV) 33 They answered him, “We are offspring of Abraham and have never been enslaved to anyone. How is it that you say, ‘You will become free’?” 34 Jesus answered them, “Truly, truly, I say to you, everyone who practices sin is a slave to sin. 35 The slave does not remain in the house forever; the son remains forever. 36 So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed.

The reaction of the religious leaders wasn’t, “That’s wonderful! Tell us more about what it means to be free by trusting in Your word.” Instead they reacted, we don’t need this. We’re good.  

· The word of God ought to have a place of high honor.

· The word of God ought to have a place of trust.

· The word of God ought to have a place of rule.

· The word of God ought to have a place of love.

· The word of God ought to have a permanent place.

Our Family

Everyone came from somewhere, some group, some background.

Two Families

Everybody’s in one of two families. 

  • Either in God’s family or in the devil’s family. 

Everybody sees themselves as children of God. 

  • “We are all just one of God’s children” is a common saying
  • You could just about ask anyone if they’ve believed they’re a child of God, and most would be likely to say yes. 

Why was Jesus So Blunt?

  • Why doesn’t He talk about making your life better, healing you, your “best day” and fixing everything wrong in your life?

As people hear the Gospel and reject it, and as time gets short for us all, the urgency and focus changes.

The message changes and the intensity grows as the danger becomes imminent and/or ignored.

They concluded that Jesus Himself was from the devil. 

  • The more they show Him hatred, the more He strikes at their hypocrisy.   
  • He never tries to patronize them.  He never uses “Jesus will improve your life” arguments or good marketing techniques, or ear tickling

John 8:33 (ESV)  33 They answered him, “We are offspring of Abraham and have never been enslaved to anyone. How is it that you say, ‘You will become free’?”

  • There’s no security in religion.  There’s no security in good works. 
  • There’s no security in your heritage
  • Only in Christ can sin be forgiven, and hell escaped. 
  • Only by saving belief and saving faith in Christ. 

We Are of Abraham Our Father

That’s what a Jew would say to claim acceptance by God. What do people say today:

  • I’m a good person
  • I was born in a Christian family
  • I’m American, of course I’m Christian
  • I go to the right church
  • My parents are Christians
  • I’ve gone to church all my life
  • I go to Church every Sunday
  • I’ve said a prayer, walked an aisle, responded to an altar call
  • I was baptized, confirmed, took Communion, had a priest pray for me

All these things in spirit were true of the Jews who claimed the right ancestry, the right heritage, and the right religion, and yet Jesus said “44 You are of your father the devil,”

Religious people in false religions never see themselves the way they really are. 

Jesus Shatters Those False Securities. 

  • When Jesus said you’ll die, and your sins, and where I go, you can’t come, He was saying in spite of what you believe and have been taught, you aren’t going to heaven where I’m going; you’re going to hell. 

Three Claims

  1. their claim to be Abraham’s physical children,
  2. their claim to be Abraham’s spiritual children,
  3. their claim to be God’s children.

How do you know when someone’s a child of God? 

  • They love the truth; they love the Savior. 
  • Insisting that you’re a child of God because of some qualification like we’ve talked about doesn’t change the fact: you are NOT a child of God just because you claim to be.

If God is Not Your Father, Who Is?

John 8:44–45 (ESV)  44 You are of your father the devil, and your will is to do your father’s desires. He was a murderer from the beginning, and does not stand in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he lies, he speaks out of his own character, for he is a liar and the father of lies.   45 But because I tell the truth, you do not believe me.

  • You don’t believe the truth. 

No one had any dirt on Jesus, if they did it would be known by all because He was the most scrutinized person in history.

John 8:47 (ESV)  47 Whoever is of God hears the words of God. The reason why you do not hear them is that you are not of God.”

  • Everybody you meet is either of God or of the devil. 
  • Its not helpful to whitewash, dilute or avoid this truth. 

1 John 3:8 (ESV)  8 Whoever makes a practice of sinning is of the devil, for the devil has been sinning from the beginning. The reason the Son of God appeared was to destroy the works of the devil.

  • No one who is born of God goes on continually practicing sin because His seed abides in him.  He can’t sin.  He’s born of God. 

Children of God practiced righteousness. 


Revelation Bible Study – Part 18

Revelation Bible Study Notes & Aids

The Great Tribulation – Part 1

Mark 13:14-23 (ESV)

The Abomination of Desolation

14 “But when you see the abomination of desolation standing where he ought not to be (let the reader understand), then let those who are in Judea flee to the mountains. 15 Let the one who is on the housetop not go down, nor enter his house, to take anything out, 16 and let the one who is in the field not turn back to take his cloak. 17 And alas for women who are pregnant and for those who are nursing infants in those days! 18 Pray that it may not happen in winter. 19 For in those days there will be such tribulation as has not been from the beginning of the creation that God created until now, and never will be. 20 And if the Lord had not cut short the days, no human being would be saved. But for the sake of the elect, whom he chose, he shortened the days. 21 And then if anyone says to you, ‘Look, here is the Christ!’ or ‘Look, there he is!’ do not believe it. 22 For false christs and false prophets will arise and perform signs and wonders, to lead astray, if possible, the elect. 23 But be on guard; I have told you all things beforehand.

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“Where the Bible makes plain sense,
seek no other sense,
lest you turn it into nonsense”.

The ESV® Bible (The Holy BibleEnglish Standard Version®) is adapted from the Revised Standard Version of the Biblecopyright Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the U.S.A. All rights reserved. https://www.crossway.org/


Genesis Bible Study – Part 7

In the Beginnining

Note: in the video I refer to this as “Part 6”. This is Part 7. It was just a mistake on my notes.

The Test: Believe or Not Believe

Genesis 1:1 In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth.

Genesis: Origins, Beginnings


In the Beginning (time), God (force), created (action),
the Heavens (space), and the Earth (matter).


A loving, eternal, all powerful, personal God
created us in His image for a purpose
OR
Nothing  X Nobody = EVERYTHING


In the Beginning

“And the earth was …”

It is significant that every verse in the first chapter of Genesis (except Genesis 1:1) begins with the conjunction “And” (Hebrew waw).

  • This structure clearly means that each statement is sequentially and chronologically connected to the verses before and after.
  • Each action follows directly upon the action described in the verse preceding it.

“Without form and void”

This phrase is, in Hebrew, tohu wavohu, or tohu waw bohu.

  • It was formless and void (tohu and bohu), darkness was over the surface of the deep, and the Spirit of God was moving over the surface of the waters. 
  • Tohu means wilderness or unformed. 
  • Bohu means empty or uninhabited.  

“Darkness upon the face of the deep”

  • The physical universe, though created, was as yet neither formed nor energized, and light is a form of energy.
  • The absence of physical light means darkness, just as the absence of form and inhabitants means a universe in elemental form, not yet completed.
  • No evil is implied in either case, merely incompleteness.

“Darkness was over the surface of the deep,” because God hadn’t created light. 

The entire surface of the earth is water; a global, primordial ocean, surrounded by universal darkness. 

  • Psalm 104:5–6 (NKJV)  5 You who laid the foundations of the earth, So that it should not be moved forever,   6 You covered it with the deep as with a garment; The waters stood above the mountains.
  • Like a cloak that covers you, the garment of the earth was water, and it says the waters were standing above the mountains. 
  • The unformed earth was literally covered with water.

In a sense, this is like a potter, who wishing to fashion a beautiful vessel and then to fill it to be used, first takes a lump of clay and places it on the wheel to mold and fit it to his purpose. 

  • God first gets the raw material, and it is a mix of elements covered with water existing in universal darkness – this before He begins to shape it. 

Proverbs 8:23–29 (NKJV) [The writer of Proverbs confirms Genesis] 23 I have been established from everlasting, From the beginning, before there was ever an earth.   24 When there were no depths I was brought forth, When there were no fountains abounding with water.   25 Before the mountains were settled, Before the hills, I was brought forth;   26 While as yet He had not made the earth or the fields, Or the primal dust of the world.   27 When He prepared the heavens, I was there, When He drew a circle on the face of the deep,   28 When He established the clouds above, When He strengthened the fountains of the deep,   29 When He assigned to the sea its limit, So that the waters would not transgress His command, When He marked out the foundations of the earth,

  • This section of Proverbs 8 is a remarkable summary of the work of the Second Person of the Godhead on each of the first three days of creation.

It was He who existed before there was an “earth” or a “deep” (Proverbs 8:23, 24), and it was He who “set a compass upon the face of the depth [deep]” (Proverbs 8:27).

  • It is thus a striking reference to the earth’s sphericity, especially referring to the shape of the ocean, the spherical form of whose surface is everywhere the standard of measurement in the vertical—that is, from sea level.

The fact that this “compass” had to be “set” on the face of the deep shows that the face of the deep originally had no such sphericity—it was formless, exactly as intimated in Genesis 1:2.

4 “The face of the waters”

Although the marvelous universe had been called into existence by the omnipotent Creator, it had not yet been imbued with energy and set in motion.

  • This must await the energizing action of the Spirit of God and the activating power of the Word of God.

5 “The Spirit of God moved” (hovered)

The word “Spirit” is the Hebrew ruach, which is also the word for “wind” and “breath.”

  • Since the universe was everywhere in need of activation, that person of the Godhead who is both omnipresent and energizing is appropriately mentioned as working in the creation at this point.

This activity of the Holy Spirit is called that of “moving” in the presence of the waters.

In modern scientific terminology, the best translation would probably be “vibrated.”

  • If the universe is to be energized, there must be an Energizer.
  • If it is to be set in motion, there must be a Prime Mover.

As the outflowing energy from God’s omnipresent Spirit began to flow outward and to permeate the cosmos, gravitational forces were activated and water and earth particles came together to form a great sphere moving through space.

  • Other such particles would soon come together also to form sun, moon, and stars throughout the universe.
  • There was now a “compass” on the face of the deep, and the formless earth had assumed the beautiful form of a perfect sphere.
  • It was now ready for light and heat and other forms of enlivening energy.

The “hovering” is not a MINOR point.

  • God is that He is directly involved in His creation. 
  • His hand is never lifted from the elements and the working of the material order. 
  • His presence is there superintending. 

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Genesis 1:1 (NKJV)  1 In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. Show the slides from “The Size of Things”


The plain meaning of Genesis 1:1 is unmistakable.

  • Let the Bible determine your system of belief…
  • Or bring your system of belief to the Bible and make the Bible fit it.

“The only proper way to interpret Genesis 1 is not to ‘interpret’ it at all. That is, we accept the fact that it was meant to say exactly what it says.” (Morris)


“Where the Bible makes plain sense,
seek no other sense,
lest you turn it into nonsense”.

The ESV® Bible (The Holy BibleEnglish Standard Version®) is adapted from the Revised Standard Version of the Biblecopyright Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the U.S.A. All rights reserved. https://www.crossway.org/