My question has to deal with the “elect” in the Olivet Discourse. Jesus was indeed talking to a Jewish crowd (his disciples). However, they were also His followers. I’ve taken Matthew 24 to mean that He’s referring mostly to the persecution of the Jews in His teaching. However, Luke 21:12, Jesus says, “…You will be brought before kings and ruler’s for my name’s sake.” Jews obviously don’t recognize “His name” as a deity, so clearly Jesus is referring to Christ-followers at this point. Historically, both Jews and Christians have been brought before kings and rulers, and been persecuted. So, I guess my question is, “Is Jesus talking to Jews, Christians, or both?” Also, do you believe the elect gathered from the 4 winds are Jews, or all of the Christians?
Can you explain why the rebuilding of the Temple is so important? Why, when Jesus died to take away our sins and we are able to worship God without a temple? And why is a Temple necessary during the Millennium? If Jesus is here with us, why does the Temple need to be rebuilt? It seems to be so vital to the Israelis. Forgive my ignorance on this matter.
As I was reading one of your responses, I noticed you referenced the Jewish historian Josephus. My former pastor claims that Josephus was an unreliable source, and was a self-serving ally of Rome. Have you come across such allegations?
I wanted to see what your thoughts were on the 13 letters penned by Paul. I have read in some research that scholars only are sure that 7 were penned by Paul, maybe another 2 are 50-50, and the rest are likely not penned by Paul (the pastoral epistles). Personally, I think Paul did pen them but have no proof of this other than faith. Since early church fathers did not question Paul’s letters as part of the New Testament canon, I would believe we should not either.
When believers choose to live sinful lifestyles (i.e. have an attitude of I do not care whether I sin or not, since I love sin and it is my lifestyle), does that mean they would reject eternal security if their intent is to live a sinful lifestyle? Or does it reveal that they are not truly saved?
I always thought that God was a spiritual form only but after reading one of your commentaries it stated that when God was living in the Holy of Holies the high priest would visit with him once a year and a rope would be tied around his ankles to pull him out if he displeased God to keep God from destroying him if he sinned in his presence. This indicates to me that God was in human form at this time. Is this correct?