Over Comers And The Rapture

Q. Don’t know if this is an appropriate question for you. I already know your answer but I know there are a lot of people out there teaching erroneous things. I “surfed” by (a well known evangelist’s) teaching the other day and was troubled at what he said about the Rapture.

He stated that not all believers will go in the Rapture, only those who have “overcome”. He said we have to overcome “the world, the flesh and the devil before we are “true” believers.  Doesn’t this negate all that Jesus did on the Cross?? Maybe you can clarify this for some of the others who may have heard the same teaching.

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Confused About Rev. 7

Q.  I am studying your Revelation series.  I am confused about your commentary on Chapter 7 verses 9-17.  Specifically verse 14 where it describes that they came out of the Great Tribulation.  Your commentary states that technically the Great Tribulation hasn’t started yet and that it is still the first half of Daniel’s 70th week.  Sounds like a contradiction.  Can you explain that better to me?

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The Kinsman Redeemer

Q. Can you give references for the following statement from your Revelation 5 article? I am interested in searching further regarding it. “A son could redeem what his father had lost.” Could Seth have redeemed what Adam lost?

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Am I In An Emerging Church?

Q.  Do you think a church whose pastor does not give altar calls, has long musical worship services and frequently reads from articles instead of the Bible is an Emerging Church?

Your periodic answers to questions about the Emergent/Seeker Friendly Church sure sound a lot like the church  I recently started attending , but I don’t want to see something that’s not there.  Frankly I guess I know the answer to this question but would like your opinion. The lack of an altar call has me really worried as I’ve never gone to a church that did not have one at the end of each and every service.

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Eternal Service Status?

Q. I read an article about the rapture and the author mentioned the Bema Seat. He wrote:

“Those who have lived carnal lives and are not walking in the will of God will lose rewards at the bema, or judgment seat of Christ. The believer must do his or her best to live the way God expects of His children while still in this mortal flesh. The child of God should take this truth very seriously. How he or she attempts to walk righteously here on earth will determine his or her eternal service status when they look into their Lord’s omniscient eyes.”

What is disturbing me is this “determined eternal service status”. Is there any hint in the Bible for the validation of this statement? I’m not happy that I will probably lose rewards but I sure don’t want to be “doomed” to an eternal kind of state or status, whatever it is, that is unchangeable. It would be depressing that despite I’m in heaven, there won’t be a chance or a single ray of hope to change our state or status if this kind of things really exist. What is your opinion on this?

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Has Some Of Revelation Been Fulfilled?

Q.  I came upon a website recently that contends that Rev 9 was fulfilled through the decline of the Ottoman Empire. I don’t know history well enough to argue.

I have wondered in times past if any of what I would think is prophecy still to be fulfilled, has in fact already happened. On a similar note I was listening to a guest on a well known late night radio show where he (a Christian I think) contended that WWII fulfilled some of the prophecies, such as a third of the ships being destroyed or a great mountain, burning with fire, being cast into the sea (atomic bomb).

I suspect that many of us read prophecy relative to our own current and recent history. Christians from a thousand years ago were probably trying to understand events of their time in relation to their understanding of Bible prophecy, especially the book of Revelation. What are your thoughts?

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More on Free Choice Vs. God’s Plan

Q.  Re: Free Choice vs. God’s Plan  When I read things about free choice, such as this particular inquiry, it brings to mind a question about whose free will/choice is being allowed here.  In this case, the “free choice” of the murderers, etc. “happens”, while the “free choice” of those being murdered/stabbed, etc. does not.  Can you address this issue for me?

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Children of the Holocaust

Q.  During the Holocaust, where did Jewish children under the age of accountability go upon death, even if they had been taught the Jewish religion by their parents?  This really concerns me greatly.

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My Anger Is Holding Me Back

Q.  I have been under-employed for two years (10 – 15 hrs/wk at minimum wage) in spite of constant submissions of applications for jobs.  I am growing more depressed each day because my prayers for local jobs for my wife and myself seem to go unanswered.

While browsing your site for previous articles, I came across the Bible study titled “Forgiveness”. After reading it, I concluded that most likely my anger is keeping me from enjoying God’s blessings. In line with John’s and your teaching, I often invoke 1 John 1:9 only minutes later to find myself awash in the same anger for which I have just asked forgiveness.

I completely understand the concepts presented in your article and I have tried to forgive those against whom my anger is directed but my attempts in the practical application of that forgiveness fail miserably. How can an imperfect sin-filled creature such as myself even begin to fulfill the requirements of maintaining daily fellowship with God?

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The Third Day

Q.  I’ve long been interested in the wedding in Galilee as a clue to the rapture or second coming.  I found upon researching the “third day” in scripture that the Bible brings out some very interesting facts/events on the “third day.”  I’m wondering if you’ve done this study, and if so, if you feel there are clues in scripture re. the rapture or second coming?

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