How do you interpret the parable of the sower in view of your stance on OSAS. Would you suggest that the seed that fell on rocky ground equates to those who do not receive the word and therefore are not saved? But what then of those who fall away in the heat of testing, and the ones whose growth is choked by the cares and worries of this life? Are they “Saved” in the first place? Or would you say that they never really received the word in the first place?
A quick question: in at least two of your studies you have used the expression “Let’s get mystical”. And in the study about the first miracle of Jesus, you go as far as saying that John (the apostle) was a mystic. Can you clarify this for me? I’ve always been under the impression that I should consider mysticism something wrong in the eyes of God, although I must admit I do not know a great deal about it.
I am currently researching the question if the Kingdom of Heaven and the Church are one and the same. Most Commentaries I read say so. Somehow this does not gel with me.
Reading Daniel 2:43-44 it appears to me that the things revealed to him are incredibly precise up to the first coming of Christ. Then the vision appears to leap to the time of the end. “And in the days of these kings shall the God of heaven set up a kingdom…”
Could it be that the terrible beast, the fourth empire, encompasses all the time and empires from Rome on until today, peaking in the ‘Anti-Christ’s’ empire. If so, then the Kingdom of Heaven would be set up when Christ comes to destroy this last chapter of the great and terrible beast.
If this scenario has any validity then the Church can not be the Kingdom, for the Kingdom of Heaven has not as yet arrived on earth, and the ‘kingdom’ parables in Matthew 13 do not address the Church directly, although some of the lessons learned from them apply also to the Church. Can you please shed light on this?
Why did the apostles choose to suffer a martyrs death? If Christ died once and for all for our sins, and bore all the suffering of mankind, why did they feel the need to be martyred? They were the closest to Christ, so shouldn’t they have best understood Christ’s message of “it is finished”? I don’t understand why they didn’t preach in hiding like what takes place in Muslim and communist countries today. It sounds like they believed in redemptive suffering- a Catholic concept.
I enjoy reading your extensive bible studies and use them as a study tool. Because I am human, some areas I have pause, but in areas of doctrine I believe, using the Bible as the only true measure, that our views parallel. Therefore I am very interested in how you view the reading of Jeremiah 30:6. Just this morning it struck me that this passage seems to be describing someone suffering from poison, esp poison gas, like sarin.
I know China and the kings of the east are not under his authority for they gather an army of 200 million men to attack the anti-Christ. Does God use them for his purpose to destroy the Anti Christ, or will God also eliminate this Army?