My name is Philemon and this is my story. It’s been described as the application of the highest principles to the most common affairs, but at the time it happened it was just two people at odds with each other being reconciled by a common love for the Lord.
Every time I post a study on the completed work of the Lord who took away all the sins of the world, and how all that’s left for us to do is believe, I get a number of questions from people. These questions are always about others who don’t seem to have been changed at all by their salvation experience. The writers ask me, “Where’s the evidence of a changed life?” or, “What about sacrifice, and repentance, and death to sin?” or “Are you saying that just because a person went forward and mouthed some prayer, and then never did anything else, that means they’re saved?” Continue reading…
Lately I’ve been receiving questions again about various rapture positions. Several of these questions have to do with the claim that in the Olivet Discourse (Matt. 24-25) Jesus in effect said the Church will have to endure all of the seven years of Daniel’s 70th Week including the Great Tribulation. In this study I will attempt to show why He could not have done so.
Do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived. Neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor homosexuals, nor sodomites, nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners will inherit the kingdom of God. And such were some of you. But you were washed, but you were sanctified, but you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus and by the Spirit of our God (1 Cor. 6:9-11).
Note: Jack originally published this article in 2003. It remains one of the most popular on this site, and for good reason. It’s a great example of what we love about his studies: taking God at His Word and not relying on human logic or tradition. This study has been an eye opener for so many, but some have had a hard time reconciling the differences between the Jewish calendar and their own, in particular, that the Jewish day begisn at sundown. I created the new image you’ll find at the bottom of the article, hoping that a visual representation would make this all a bit clearer. I hope this helps! -Samantha
A Bible Study by Jack Kelley
In Matthew 12:38 Jesus was asked for a sign to show that He was the promised Messiah. The religious officials had just accused Him of using the power of Satan to perform His miracles, and so He described the only sign they would see. “Just as Jonah was three days and three nights in the belly of a huge fish,” He said, “So will the Son of Man be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth (Matt. 12:40).” By this He meant that because of their hardened hearts they would only know for sure that He was their Messiah after He rose from the dead, an unmistakably miraculous sign. History shows they didn’t accept even as incredible a sign as this, but His response has resulted in a 2,000 year controversy surrounding the time of His death.
When asked how he could be so certain that God exists, one great theologian responded with a 2 word answer, “The Jew.” The continued survival of the Jewish people in spite of numerous and concerted efforts to exterminate them unequivocally demonstrates God’s existence, His presence in the world and His involvement in the affairs of man. Continue reading…
Q. I was raised in a Reformed Church that subscribed to infant baptism. My parents had me so baptized at age 5. I always felt this was proper based on my understanding of the doctrine of covenant theology that says infants should be baptized, they way infants were circumcised, prior to faith (Acts 2: 39). I am a believer of many years and my wife and I recently decided to become members (covenant partners) at a non-denominational baptist background church we have attended for 3 years. Now I am told I can not become a member without a baptism of immersion. I know the points or arguments for both. I feel my baptism was sure, based on the character and integrity of God. What do you advise?
Q. I have a question about the crowns that the church is awarded at the Bema Seat after the rapture. Revelation 4:4 states that the twenty four elders , which represent the church, will have crowns of gold. Then in Rev. 4:10, the crowns are translated from the Greek word stephanos; crowns made of ivy, olive leaves, flowers etc. I know that stephanos crowns are victors crowns. what are your thoughts on this?
Q. I hear of crowns being awarded to the members of the church at the Bema Seat Judgment. In my mind and my heart I do not feel I deserve any crowns, awards or any acknowledgments for anything I may have done as a Christian on earth.
Q. I have recently posted to a Christian forum a study I did to learn more about and better understand the End-Time events. I was accused of error and of spreading false doctrine even though I backed up everything with many Scriptural references. I guess my questions are how do I deal with this, both on a personal level and in the public forum?
Q. Today I have read your thoughts on the scars of Christ’s incorruptible body, and the thought that ‘my’ scars may be permanent is quite a disappointment. I have several pronounced scars and half a left thumb and these are just ugly and I don’t much care. I don’t mind being ugly in a genderless afterlife but both my eyes have had the lens removed and synthetic replacements installed. I do not look forward to being totally blind for eternity. The verses you gave did not cause me to think that damage done to our mortal bodies would not be transferred to our replacements. Can you help?
Q. In the posting of April 23, you addressed a question about the validity of the Rapture. While I was reading in that portion of Scripture, the phrase “to the coming of the Lord” from verse 15 of 1 Thessalonians 4 caught my attention. Reading the verse from the beginning, it reads “For this we say to you by the word of the Lord, that we which are alive and remain to the coming of the Lord shall not prevent (precede) them which are asleep.” My question is what does Paul mean when he says those who remain “to the coming of the Lord…” Is this a timing statement?
Q. I was so thrilled that my roommate came to church with me on Easter Sunday. She isn’t walking with the Lord, although she calls herself a Christian. Afterward she expressed to me that something is missing in her life and that she feels broken. She had some bad church experiences and Bible study experiences in the past. Even so, I thought it might be a neat idea to do a Bible study with her. It might be a good bonding thing for us, and she would feel more comfortable studying the Word with just me, and I know we would both learn. Do you know of a good study for a baby believer we could do together?
Q. Every day I grow sicker and sicker to my stomach when I read how the US is turning against Israel. I hate the thought of being included in that betrayal. I am only one person and feel so powerless to support the nation of God’s chosen people. I pray for them, but is there anything we can do to support them any other way?
Q. Reading various questions on your website I am reminded of a something I’ve wondered about for some time. When I became a Christian 7 years ago I went through a period of great dismay when I realized how much controversy there was in the church. God loving, sincere and selfless Christians had different teachings and beliefs on spiritual gifts, how to be baptized, prophecy today etc. Each of them could point convincingly to scripture to support their view. My question is this – Why is this so? When God gave us His word He knew there would be misunderstandings. Why do you think God left some teachings in His word open to misinterpretation?