To See the Invisible Hope #3

Saturday, November 5, 2016

“For we know that the whole creation groaneth and travaileth in pain together until now. And not only they, but ourselves also, which have the firstfruits of the Spirit, even we ourselves groan within ourselves, waiting for the adoption, to wit, the redemption of our body. For we are saved by hope: but hope that is seen is not hope: for what a man seeth, why doth he yet hope for? But if we hope for that which we see not, then do we with patience wait for it” (Romans 8:22-25 KJV).

How do we see the hope that cannot be seen?

What Paul only mentions briefly in today’s Scripture, he provides great detail in Second Corinthians.

Chapter 4: “[16] …[B]ut though our outward man perish, yet the inward man is renewed day by day. [17] For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, worketh for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory; [18] While we look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen: for the things which are seen are temporal; but the things which are not seen are eternal.

Now, chapter 5: “[1] For we know that if our earthly house of this tabernacle were dissolved, we have a building of God, an house not made with hands, eternal in the heavens. [2] For in this we groan, earnestly desiring to be clothed upon with our house which is from heaven: [3] If so be that being clothed we shall not be found naked. [4] For we that are in this tabernacle do groan, being burdened: not for that we would be unclothed, but clothed upon, that mortality might be swallowed up of life. [5] Now he that hath wrought us for the selfsame thing is God, who also hath given unto us the earnest of the Spirit. [6] Therefore we are always confident, knowing that, whilst we are at home in the body, we are absent from the Lord: [7] (For we walk by faith, not by sight: ) [8] We are confident, I say, and willing rather to be absent from the body, and to be present with the Lord.”

Rather than using physical eyes, we employ the eyes of faith….

To See the Invisible Hope #2

Friday, November 4, 2016

“For we know that the whole creation groaneth and travaileth in pain together until now. And not only they, but ourselves also, which have the firstfruits of the Spirit, even we ourselves groan within ourselves, waiting for the adoption, to wit, the redemption of our body. For we are saved by hope: but hope that is seen is not hope: for what a man seeth, why doth he yet hope for? But if we hope for that which we see not, then do we with patience wait for it” (Romans 8:22-25 KJV).

How do we see the hope that cannot be seen?

If we begin reading in verse 16, we better appreciate Paul’s words in today’s Scripture: “[16] The Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God: [17] And if children, then heirs; heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Christ; if so be that we suffer with him, that we may be also glorified together. [18] For I reckon that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us.”

Follow the logic in these verses. Since we are the children of God, we are heirs. Because we are heirs, we are heirs of God, and we are joint-heirs with Christ. Since we suffer with Christ (suffering here being groaning and travailing in pain; cf. today’s Scripture), we will be glorified together. Because we will be glorified, the sufferings we now endure “are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us.”

Verses 19-21 further explain: “[19] For the earnest expectation of the creature waiteth for the manifestation of the sons of God. [20] For the creature was made subject to vanity, not willingly, but by reason of him who hath subjected the same in hope, [21] Because the creature itself also shall be delivered from the bondage of corruption into the glorious liberty of the children of God.”

In God’s program, there is a day called “the adoption, to wit, the redemption of our body” (today’s Scripture). That is, we wait for that day when we are freed from the presence of sin, when we leave behind these weakening, ailing, fallen bodies riddled with sin….

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To See the Invisible Hope #1

Thursday, November 3, 2016

“For we know that the whole creation groaneth and travaileth in pain together until now. And not only they, but ourselves also, which have the firstfruits of the Spirit, even we ourselves groan within ourselves, waiting for the adoption, to wit, the redemption of our body. For we are saved by hope: but hope that is seen is not hope: for what a man seeth, why doth he yet hope for? But if we hope for that which we see not, then do we with patience wait for it” (Romans 8:22-25 KJV).

How do we see the hope that cannot be seen?

Sometime ago, a Christian sister told me about how her physical body was aging and wearing down. She tried to take care of it earlier in life, but now that she is in her senior years, it is becoming more apparent that bodily degeneration is inescapable. While she is thankful for physicians and medication to ease the pain, she looks forward to the day when she gets her glorified body in heaven! (A Christian brother, much older than her, also suffering health issues, told me likewise. He knows there is more to life than just what we can see with the naked eye.)

In today’s Scripture, we read about “the whole creation groaneth and travaileth in pain together until now.” Then, Paul makes what some find to be a startling statement: “And not only they, but ourselves also, which have the firstfruits of the Spirit, even we ourselves groan within ourselves, waiting for the adoption, to wit, the redemption of our body….” Part of that “suffering” creation is suffering Christians!

There is a tendency for people to believe that once they trust Jesus Christ as their personal Saviour, all their troubles just disappear. While it is without a doubt true that their eternal troubles have been permanently settled at the cross of Calvary, Father God has temporary left them here in this fallen world of sin. These bodies are made of corruptible flesh. They are prone to any and every type of sickness and disease, and short of the Lord’s coming, they will experience the greatest “disease” of all—death!

However, we see the hope that cannot be seen….

“Missing” People?

Friday, August 19, 2016

“He telleth the number of the stars; he calleth them all by their names. Great is our LORD, and of great power: his understanding is infinite” (Psalm 147:4,5 KJV).

If the LORD God Almighty can number and name the stars (which outnumber the grains of sand on every earthly beach combined!), knowing the whereabouts of every last human being is quite an easy task for Him!

While visiting a store, my eyes glimpsed a giant poster featuring information about and pictures of missing persons. Some of these individuals have been missing for nearly 20 years. One lady disappeared almost 40 years ago, still missing even today. Are they still living? Or, did they die long ago? We can only wonder what happened to them, and to all the countless others who have mysteriously disappeared throughout human history.

The good news is that there is a God, a loving and just God, and He will eventually set these things right. At the resurrection-rapture for Christians (Body of Christ—1 Thessalonians 4:13-18), or the resurrection for the Jewish kingdom saints before the Millennium (Revelation 20:4-6), or at the end of the Millennium for all the lost of the ages (Revelation 20:11-15), God will resurrect every single person who has ever lived. He has never lost track of even one of these 10 billion-plus souls or even one of these 10 billion-plus bodies. They are all somewhere, and while we may not know their whereabouts He certainly does!

Believers separated by time and/or tragedy will be united one day in heaven’s glory. Their relationships are not lost forever, only interrupted momentarily. People have a tendency to want God to “take care” of certain wrongful things, but if He is to “take care” of those disorderly things, He will have to force everything else to be right as well. That means “taking care” (in judgment) of every person without Jesus Christ. Friends, may we not hope for God to “take care” of all the world’s problems just yet. People still need to trust Jesus Christ and be saved from the wrath to come. Joyful reunions for us Christians will come in due time, but let us not rush it or worry about it! 🙂

Understand and Enjoy the Bible! #5

Saturday, January 9, 2016

And account that the longsuffering of our Lord is salvation; even as our beloved brother Paul also according to the wisdom given unto him hath written unto you; As also in all his epistles, speaking in them of these things; in which are some things hard to be understood, which they that are unlearned and unstable wrest, as they do also the other scriptures, unto their own destruction (2 Peter 3:15,16 KJV).

Although there is so much confusion about it, can we really understand and enjoy the Bible?

There are three primary reasons why there is such extensive argument about what the Bible actually says. Thirdly, people who do not use God’s Word God’s way cannot understand and teach the Bible correctly. Notice 2 Timothy 2:15: “Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.”

Keep reading the passage, friend! “[16] But shun profane and vain babblings: for they will increase unto more ungodliness. [17] And their word will eat as doth a canker: of whom is Hymenaeus and Philetus; [18] Who concerning the truth have erred, saying that the resurrection is past already; and overthrow the faith of some.” Hymenaeus and Philetus were teaching “the resurrection is past already.” This involves a timeline—past, present, and future. These two men were not denying the doctrine of resurrection; they were merely saying “the resurrection” had already happened. Also, the context is not Jesus Christ’s resurrection. It is the false teaching that Christians have already been resurrected.

By Hymenaeus and Philetus telling Christians that Christians had already been resurrected, Christians who had not experienced that resurrection thus doubted their salvation (“overthrow the faith of some”). Innumerable precious believers have been duped in the centuries since Hymenaeus and Philetus. Christendom abounds with smooth-talking church leaders who “teach” the Bible but who do not teach it “rightly divided.” They are not “dividing” things that God has divided; they have thoroughly mixed the Bible verses. No wonder the professing church is so mixed-up and impotent today! May all the lost people hush, may all the false Bible users shush, and may all the non-dispensationalists hush, so confusion can subside and spiritual light can enter!

Satan and Dispensationalism #12

Friday, October 16, 2015

“But I would not have you to be ignorant, brethren, concerning them which are asleep, that ye sorrow not, even as others which have no hope (1 Thessalonians 4:13 KJV).

Today’s Scripture is one of the six key areas that Satan has found to be advantageous regarding confusing God’s people in this Dispensation of Grace, the Church the Body of Christ!

Satan wants ignorant Christians. After all, he can only rule over people who are unaware of what really matters. As one dear brother often says, “Ignorant brethren are the world’s largest denomination!” To add insult to injury, the exact six instances where Paul says not to be ignorant of some doctrine, they are the very doctrines of which Christendom is totally ignorant today! Awful! Shameful! Awful!

The final exhortation not to be ignorant is in today’s Scripture. Christians in Thessalonica were suffering intense persecution (1 Thessalonians 1:6; 1 Thessalonians 2:14; 2 Thessalonians 1:3-7). Today’s Scripture indicates some believers were murdered! Paul told the living saints in Thessalonica not to worry or sorrow uncontrollably. They would see their brethren in heaven. While grieving, they were to “comfort one another with these words” (verse 18). Before prophecy resumes, our Dispensation of Grace must close. All Christians who have died during the last 2,000 years—beginning with the Apostle Paul—will be resurrected. “Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord” (verse 17). We will all be given glorified bodies like Jesus Christ’s, thereby enabling us to function in the heavenly places forever for Jesus Christ’s glory (2 Corinthians 5:1-5; Philippians 3:20,21).

There is still a satanic agenda today to rob Christians of the blessed hope, our gathering together unto Christ in the air—not on Earth! Friends, let us ever be mindful of it. Many people today in so-called Christian circles scoff at the idea of the Rapture. They deny it, claiming we should be waiting for the seven-year Tribulation and Christ’s Second Coming. They are unaware of the very thing Paul said to pay attention to! Paul’s epistles, Romans through Philemon, are largely ignored… thus, Christendom is largely ignorant!

NOTE: Saints, with 12 studies, we are just “warming up” with “Satan and Dispensationalism!” We will temporarily suspend these studies tomorrow, to make way for a special one-day study. Please stay tuned! 🙂

When the Roll is Called Up Yonder #2

Thursday, April 9, 2015

“For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first: Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord” (1 Thessalonians 4:16,17 KJV).

The second verse of James Milton Black’s classic 1893 hymn “When the Roll is Called Up Yonder” highlights today’s Scripture.

“On that bright and cloudless morning when the dead in Christ shall rise,
And the glory of His resurrection share;
When His chosen ones shall gather to their home beyond the skies,
And the roll is called up yonder, I’ll be there.”

One day, when no one else wants to trust Jesus Christ as his or her personal Saviour, “the fulness of the Gentiles [will] be come in” (Romans 11:25). The Church the Body of Christ and the Dispensation of Grace will be complete: Paul’s Gospel (1 Corinthians 15:3-4) will no longer be a valid Gospel message. Once our mystery program ends with the Rapture (today’s Scripture), Israel’s prophetic program will resume where God paused it 2,000 years ago with Saul’s conversion in Acts chapter 9.

“Our gathering together unto [Christ]” (2 Thessalonians 2:1) is a most joyous hope, comforting bereaved and weary Christians: sadness and suffering permanently ends, a reunion with loved ones in Christ, and meeting Jesus Christ Himself! This world ending for us that we enter the heavenly places and fulfill God’s will there. The Rapture is much more than an escape from Earth. It is an appointment to keep in the heavens!

These weak, flesh-and-blood bodies cannot function in outer space. So, God will give all deceased Christians resurrected glorified bodies, and He will give us (living Christians) new glorified bodies as well (1 Corinthians 15:35-55). These new bodies will be just like Jesus’ resurrection body (Philippians 3:20,21), unlimited by time and space (meant to function in heaven). One day, I will be there, when all the saints are called up yonder to fill the heavens with Jesus Christ’s glory (Ephesians 1:18-23; Ephesians 2:6,7)! Will you?