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A Christmas Message

A Bible Study by Jack Kelley

Let’s take just a moment to look beyond the controversy over when the Lord came and focus on why He came.  I think Isaiah gave us the best explanation the Bible offers. What follows is my adaptation of Isaiah 53.

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Christmas … the Rest of the Story

For You created my inmost being, You knit me together in my mother’s womb … all the days ordained for me were written in Your Book before one of them came to be.
–Psalm 139:13,16

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The Virgin Mary Had a Baby Boy

A Bible Study by Jack Kelley

Therefore the Lord Himself will give you a sign. The virgin shall be with child and will give birth to a son, and will call him Immanuel (Isaiah 7:14).

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Previous Feature Articles

The Christmas Story … Part 1

A Bible Study by Jack Kelley

For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given, and the government will be on his shoulders. And he will be called Wonderful, Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. (Isaiah 9:6)

Therefore the Lord himself will give you a sign: The virgin will be with child and will give birth to a son, and will call him Immanuel. (Isaiah 7:14)

In the past he humbled the land of Zebulun and the land of Naphtali, but in the future he will honor Galilee of the Gentiles, by the way of the sea, along the Jordan. The people walking in darkness have seen a great light; on those living in the land of the shadow of death a light has dawned. (Isaiah 9:1-2)

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Who Are We, Anyway?

As we begin another Christmas season, let’s review exactly what the Lord’s arrival on Earth has done for us. It’ll help us remember the reason for the season and rekindle our joy in the midst of all the hustle and bustle.

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God’s Blessing Game

Commentary by Jack Kelley

Every year at Thanksgiving I’m reminded of the holiday’s origin, the Jewish Feast of Tabernacles. It was the crowning event in Israel’s cycle of fall feasts that also included Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur. It was a celebration of the harvest, of God’s mercy in forgiving their sins for another year, and a remembrance of the time when He lived among them in the wilderness, setting them apart as His people.

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Want To vs. Have To: Discovering the Joy of Giving

A Bible Study by Jack Kelley

Because we’re adults, we think we’re pretty responsible. We have ourselves convinced that by and large we do the “right thing.” But sub-consciously we’re still governed by something called the “want to vs. have to” principle.  Here’s what that means.

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Life’s Most Important Choices

A Bible Study by Jack Kelley

Recently I’ve been asked about witnessing to “unsaved believers” as one writer called them. I usually refer to them as Christians-in-name-only. They call themselves Christians and do some things that make them appear to be Christians. They go to Church, make regular contributions, sign up for volunteer service projects, even teach Sunday School, but they’re not born again. Being born again means you know you’re a sinner in need of a savior. You believe Jesus died for all your sins and have asked Him to be your Savior. According to Jesus, people who are not born again will be denied entrance into the Kingdom (John 3:3) no matter how “good” they’ve been on Earth.

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How To Win Your Crowns

A Bible Study by Jack Kelley

So, forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus. All of us who are mature should take such a view of things. And if on some point you think differently, that too God will make clear to you. Only let us live up to what we have already attained. (Phil 3:13-16)

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Believe In The One He Has Sent

A Bible Study by Jack Kelley

Then I saw a great white throne and him who was seated on it. Earth and sky fled from his presence, and there was no place for them. And I saw the dead, great and small, standing before the throne, and books were opened.  Another book was opened, which is the book of life. The dead were judged according to what they had done as recorded in the books. The sea gave up the dead that were in it, and death and Hades gave up the dead that were in them, and each person was judged according to what he had done.Then death and Hades were thrown into the lake of fire. The lake of fire is the second death.  If anyone’s name was not found written in the book of life,  he was thrown into the lake of fire. (Rev. 20:11-15)

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Ask A Bible Teacher

Clothed In Scarlet

Q. I have a friend who has begun the study of Revelation with her husband and she asked if I had any material to help them understand it better. I printed out your complete study on the book. It’s the best that I have read.

As a result of my friends interest it has prompted me to “re-study” it and I do have a question concerning Chapter 17 where the woman on the beast is revealed, it says the beast was scarlet. What is the implication of it being this color?

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Why Do I Have A Choice?

Q. I have always been taught that God gives us freedom of choice because He wants us to be free to love Him or not love Him by choice. Therefore we are free to either sin or not sin. If that is true, then why can’t I choose NOT to have freedom of choice? I WANT to be a robot, loving God and not sinning continuously. I constantly sin…constantly. I am beset by a sinful addiction.

I pray to God, through Jesus, to keep the opportunity for sin away from me. I do not place myself in situations where I can sin, but the thoughts of my sin barage me constantly, 24 hours a day and seven days a week. This week some sins that I committed 25 years ago came back to haunt me. I confessed these sins to Jesus and repented many years ago but, even though He forgave me, He let me suffer punishment now. I understand that just because He forgave me didn’t mean that I would escape punishment. These were some very serious sins.

What I would like to know is that long before I committed these sins I would have gladly given up my freedom of choice and would like to have been an “android for Christ” (if such a thing would have been possible). You seem to be a very spiritually blessed person so maybe you could answer this for me.

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I Never Asked For This

Q. I am going to try and articulate my question. First let me say, that I understand I am a sinner, have a sin nature and need a redeemer. I don’t DESERVE anything, but thru grace and faith and the work of Jeshua on the cross I am saved.

Here goes my analytical mind: I didn’t chose to be born. Since I didn’t chose to be born I didn’t chose to be a sinner. I have an invisible (to me) enemy that wants to see me in hell. I also didn’t chose my body/mind/ brokenness. Some I’ve known seem to be a lot more hard headed than me, etc. Which seems to lead them into the trap of not wanting/believing they need a savior. So they go to hell. That seems like a HUGE penalty for something one didn’t chose in the first place.

When I think about this it makes me very fearful that I could have missed it. But for the grace of God go I. I can almost hear your answer, the one I could come up with. My problem with that is it is hard for me to believe that everyone regardless of their issues got/gets at least one chance. My mind replies: what if? Maybe the answer is: It just is.

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Was There A Pre-Adamite Civilization?

Q. Do you believe there could have been a pre-Adamite civilization and if you don’t would you say why false teachers cling to this? I found some sites that give compelling reasons for its existence, but I have also found sites that come down hard on this teaching. Could you please share your thoughts?

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Everything’s Good?

Q. How do you answer the statement that Satan would have to have fallen after the creation since “everything He had made was good”?

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How Is Jesus Related To Abraham And David?

Q. An issue which bothers me is this, I know Jesus was conceived by a virgin. How then is he being linked in genealogy to Abraham and David if Joseph is not his father. Joseph, husband to Mary is also listed in this genealogy as giving legitimacy to the fact that Jesus as a man is a descendant of Abraham. It does not challenge my faith but it keeps on popping up as a question in my mind. Probably the devil trying to twist me around to doubt my faith. What can you say about it.

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Qualifying Jesus As Israel’s King

Q. There is something I want to ask my own church Minister, but never remember to when I see him.

In Mathew chapter 1 verses 1-17 it gives: The book of the generations of Jesus Christ, the son of David, the son of Abraham, showing that Jesus is a descendant of David. Mathew must have known that Joseph was the step-father of Jesus and therefore Jesus could not be a descendant of David through Joseph.

I think that I heard or read somewhere, many years ago, that Mary was also a descendant of David, but do not know if this is true. Is it mentioned anywhere in the Bible? I have not been able to find it.

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Seven Thunders

Q. What, in your opinion, was the content/nature of the seven thunders in the book of Revelation, that John was forbidden to record. The events of Revelation are quite terrifying. What could possibly be worse, so much so that the nature/content of the seven thunders is kept secret?

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Controversy Over John 8

Q. Thank you so much for being a continued source of reference.

I was in a conversation today with a gnostic and asked him what his point of view was on scripture. After some discussion he tried to tell me that there are inaccuracies in scripture. One of the things he brought up was that the “cast the first stone” story from John 8 wasn’t in the original mms and was added by the Catholic church as part of a conspiracy later. I told him that I was aware that it wasn’t in the older copies of John, but was in the older copies of Luke (which is how I understand it) He didn’t seem to believe that. I then told him that 2 Timothy 3:16 says that scripture is God breathed and that God would not allow His word to be corrupted to which he just replied “yeah, but it was.” Can you offer any more ammunition other than just knowing that he’s clinging to his a prior mind set regardless of the evidence presented?

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