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Friday, October 24, 2014

A Conflict and Two Seeds?

Tina wrote:

I have never heard of whatever this false seed is? They were sinners born and bred. Also I believe at the great white throne judgement, there will be tares there. That is when all is said and done. Just my thoughts. Maybe I am wrong.
Thanks for listening.
Tina

Dear Tina,
God bless your beautiful heart and thank you for writing and sorry this reply took so long but we wanted to help you with a careful answer.   The Bible is the record of Gods purpose in the Ages, a record that reveals a spiritual foe of great power, and a conflict that involves two seeds, as indicated in the primeval prophecy of Genesis 3:

I will put enmity between thee and the woman, and between thy seed and her seed; it shall bruise thy head, and thou shalt bruise His heel (Gen. 3:15).
It is evident that a place must be found for this subject of The Seed.

Our first investigation must be into the words employed. We observe that the word seed as found in the A.V. is a translation of either the Hebrew words zera or perudoth, or of the Greek words sperma, sporos, spora or speiro. The word perudoth, The seed is rotten under their clods (Joel 1:17) need not detain us, it is derived from the Hebrew word parad to be separated or scatter, and does not occur elsewhere. The word zera is the word that we must consider both in its primitive meaning and in its usage. This word is derived from zara to spread or scatter as in Zechariah 10:9 I will sow them among the people. In two passages zera is translated child (Lev. 22:13; 1 Sam. 1:11), but the most frequent translation of the word is seed. It enters into the composition of the name Jezreel Sown of God (Hos. 1:4).

The word seed is used in the Scriptures of man, of beast and of plant, and indicates either the germ of life, secreted in animals from the blood, or their progeny, offspring or fruit. We meet the word seed in the first chapter of Genesis, where the substantive occurs six times, and the participle, translated bearing and yielding in relation to seed, three times. The herb yielding seed, and the fruit tree yielding fruit after his kind, whose seed is in itself (Gen. 1:11). In the first case, this is a statement of a material fact, but the record of Genesis 1 has more in it than the record of material creation. Pauls use of Genesis 1:2,3 in 2 Corinthians 4:6 For God, Who commanded the light to shine out of darkness, hath shined in our hearts is an indication that this record sub-serves a spiritual purpose. We are therefore prepared to find that what is said of the seed of herb and of fruit tree will be also true of the seed in its highest and spiritual sense. Three items call for notice.
  1. The expression yielding seed or as it is literally, seeding seed, brings before us the initial fact that a succession, a progeny is in view.
  2. The statement after its kind, assures us that the continuance or succession preserves its relationship and likeness to the parent seed. Intermixture is apparently disallowed.
  3. Whose seed is in itself further impresses us with the bounds that are set, and which are not to be transgressed.
These features are true of plants and of animals, but when we learn, as we shall when reading Genesis 3 that there is One, the Seed of the woman, Who is in conflict with another seed, the seed of the serpent, these statements take upon themselves a deeper and fuller significance.

The power and purpose of a seed to continue the line and have successors or progeny, and its relation to the creation of man, made for a little lower than the angels, should be noted. So far as we know, angels are separate creations, they neither marry nor are given in marriage and have no seed. Adam, by his creation was allied to the animal world, in that he could be the father of the succeeding race, and so was distinguished from the angelic world where progeny is unknown. In this, the Scripture suggests that he was a figure of Him that was to come, the Second Man, and the last Adam, Who in a higher and spiritual sense was also to seed His seed. Unlike the angels, all men are derived from a common ancestor, all are made of one blood, and the teaching of Romans 5 shows that Adam and Christ stand as type and anti-type and that as by one mans disobedience many were constituted sinners, so by the obedience of One shall many be constituted 'righteous, mankind being organically one as the angels never could be. When Seth was born, his mother called his name Seth, for God, said she, hath appointed me another seed instead of Abel, whom Cain slew (Gen. 4:25). Here we have the attack upon the true seed, its preservation, and a hint of the doctrine of Substitution.

The Ark was prepared by Noah at the command of God with the express purpose of keeping seed alive upon the face of all the earth (Gen. 7:3), and the destruction of all flesh by the flood is intimately connected with the abnormal alliance of the sons of God, the daughters of men, and their resulting hybrid progeny, the seed of the serpent in fact. With the true seed, thus preserved, the covenant of Genesis 9:9 was made. The next reference to a seed is that of Genesis 12:7 where the promise of God to Abraham is expressed in the one sentence Unto thy seed will I give this land.

The history of the Bible is largely that of the conflict between two seeds and the narrowing line through which the true seed came. In the time of Noah, it was indicated that through the line of Shem the seed should come, and of the descendants of Shem, the family of Abraham was chosen. Ishmael is passed by and Isaac is chosen. Esau is set aside and Jacob chosen. Of the sons of Jacob, Judah is chosen, and of Judah, came the family of David and so on unto the birth of Christ at Bethlehem. We are, however, conscious that in thus stating the case, we have narrowed our survey down to One, namely Christ, whereas it is perfectly clear from Scripture that the seed of Abraham was to be multiplied as the stars of heaven or as the sand of the seashore. We must return accordingly to Genesis 3, where the great prophecy concerning the Seed of the Woman is recorded, and consider it more closely.

It is however impossible to hope to arrive at any clear understanding of the import of Genesis 3:15 if we do not see its relation with the surrounding context. We must go back at least to Genesis 2:18-20 where we read that the animal creation were caused to pass before Adam who named them all, yet, adds the passage For Adam there was not found an help meet for him. Common and uncritical usage has introduced into our language the word Helpmeet, which, first being improperly hyphened, was then taken to mean Help-mate. This however does not fully express the truth intended. True, the wife is a help-mate, but the intention of Genesis 2:18 goes deeper. The Hebrew reads ezer help, ki as, and neged the front part, the front of a thing next to the speaker, before, in the presence of, over against. The LXX translates these words, once by kat auton according to him (Gen. 2:18), and homoios auto like to himself (Gen. 2:20). Here it is insisted that the principle already enunciated after its kind operates in the matter of man and marriage. The process whereby the woman was brought to man illustrates the principle whose seed is in itself.

Man by his constitution is called a being that breathes. God breathed into his nostrils the breath of life, and man became a living soul (Gen. 2:7); All flesh, wherein is the breath of life (Gen. 7:15). The word translated rib is translated chamber on two occasions, and may mean a cell, and in the LXX is rendered by the word pleura and is associated with the lungs or breathing. Woman was evidently, like the seed in the plant, after its kind. Adam looked upon the woman brought to him as a help meet for him and said This is now bone of my bones, and flesh of my flesh. Jacobs in the Anthologia Palatina shows that the Greek word pleura was used for a wife. The progeny of such a pair must be unmixed and after its kind.

Another matter of importance is the evident relation of Genesis 2:25 with 3:1. In both verses the Hebrew word arom is found. In Genesis 2:25 it is translated naked. The spelling of the word can be shown in English as arohm, and in 3:1 where it is translated subtil, the spelling of the word can be shown in English as aroom. In the first occurrence the primitive meaning of nudity is retained, in the second occurrence the secondary meaning to be cunning or crafty in a bad sense is intended. The figure of the seed is however not quite out of mind, although to the modern and Western reader there is nothing to call up the idea of seed. When the word translated naked takes the feminine form in the plural aremah, it is then translated heap of corn (Ruth 3:7), and this was because the corn was naked or stripped of husk and straw, the threshing being done on the spot. To this the apostle refers in 1 Corinthians 15:37. Speaking of the present mortal body and of the resurrection body, he says, bare grain. Here the word translated is gymnos naked, and is so translated in connection with resurrection in 2 Corinthians 5:3 we shall not be found naked. Adam and his wife were bare grain stripped of all that is suggested by chaff or husk. Bare or naked grain was ready for sowing, ready to be fruitful and multiply. We are reminded in 1 Corinthians 15 moreover that to every seed its own body is as true in the spiritual relation of resurrection as it is in the physical creation. The body of the believer, like the body of Adam is at first natural, and afterward in resurrection spiritual, for, there is a natural body, and there is a spiritual body. The natural body is that which we receive from the first man Adam, the spiritual body we receive from the second Man, the Lord from heaven, the last Adam. This associates the believer with Adam and with Christ and the two bodies that are in view, are embraced in the figure of the image.
As we have borne the image of the earthy, we shall also bear the image of the heavenly (1 Cor. 15:49).

The overreaching subtlety of the serpent, while plunging man into sin and death, opened the door for the redemptive purposes of God to operate, and symbolically man was clothed upon before being expelled from the garden. It is to be noted with worship and wonder, that the Hebrew word translated skin is Or, and while difficult to show in English letters, differs from the word naked in the original only by the omission of the final M. The word skin is in the Hebrew a derivative of the word naked. Before this clothing of the nakedness of the man and his wife took place the promise of the Coming Seed is given:
I will put enmity between thee and the woman, and between thy seed and her seed; it shall bruise thy head, and thou shalt bruise His heel (Gen. 3:15).
With the light we have received in this preparatory study, let us approach this great central prophecy with chastened hearts, yet with exultant spirits, for here lies enshrined the purpose of the ages, its conflict and its ultimate triumph.


The Evident Importance of the Seed
in the Unfolding Purpose

We have seen by the examination of Genesis 1 to 3, that The Seed, its purity, its preservation and its enemies therein foreshadowed, justifies the title that has been given to these early chapters of revelation, The Seed Plot of all Scripture. If this be admitted it will be further acknowledged that lying at the very center of the purpose there foreshadowed, is the dual prophecy concerning the Seed of the woman and the seed of the serpent (Gen. 3:15), and that any attempt to understand or explain the purpose of the ages that fails to give a prominent place to this prophecy, must necessarily be deficient and possibly misleading.

Before concentrating upon the actual terms of this prophecy in germ, let us take a large view. The last of the prophets is Malachi, and he it is that points back to Genesis 2 and 3, and by so doing brings the whole of the Old Testament revelation concerning the seed to a completion. When we open the New Testament we are confronted with a genealogy, The book of the generation of Jesus Christ as the Son of David, the Son of Abraham, and in a peculiar sense the Son of a woman, Who is nevertheless Emmanuel God with us, and on the last page of the New Testament we read of Him Who is both the Root as well as the Offspring of David. We have therefore Old Testament and New Testament linked together as prophecy and fulfillment, by these four passages.

A Genesis 1 to 3. The Seed of the Woman.
B Malachi 2:10-16. The Seed of God.
A Matthew 1. The Son of the Virgin. Emmanuel.
B Revelation 22:16. The Root and Offspring of David.
Let us examine the passage in Malachi. The A.V. reads in Malachi 2:15 a godly seed, but in the margin informs the reader that the Hebrew reads a seed of God. When the Old Testament writer wished to speak of the godly he used the Hebrew chasid, a fitting word, meaning one who has received grace, and so should be gracious. Here, in Malachi, something deeper is intended, and Elohim should be translated God in chapter 2:15 as it is in the six other passages where it occurs in Malachi. Malachi reproves both the priests and the people, and the first two chapters are devoted to this dual theme. It would take us too far afield to exhibit the complete structure of Malachi 1 and 2, but a brief outline of Malachi 2:10-16 will enable the reader to see the unity of the theme, and the essential features will be thrown into prominence.

Malachi 2:10-16

A 10 One Father. One God.
a 10. Covenant of fathers.

b 11. Treacherous dealing.

B 11 The daughter of a strange god.
A 15 One made. Wherefore One?
b Treacherous dealing.

a Covenant of marriage.

B 15 A seed of God.
Israels departure from their God, the dishonoring of the Covenant, the profaning of the holiness of the Lord, is made to impinge upon marriage with the daughter of a strange god, even as the purpose of God both at the creation of Man, and afterwards in the separating laws of Israel indicates that He sought a seed of God. The law forbidding the sowing of mingled seed (Lev. 19:19) had more in it than good husbandry, and its bearing upon the peculiar character of Israel is seen in Ezra 9:2 and the remainder of the book, where great grief is manifested at the mingling of the holy seed with the people of the land. Nehemiah also spoke severely concerning this same act, instancing Solomons sin in these things ... in marrying strange wives (Neh. 13:23-27).

In the prophecy of Daniel, we see very clearly that the strange god will be associated with the blasphemous beast of the time of the end (Dan. 11:39), and in the forecast of Gentile dominion Daniel reveals that at the time of the end some shall mingle themselves with the seed of men (Dan. 2:43), which suggests that as it was in the days of Noah so shall it be at the time of the end. To make the people of Israel aware of their profanation, the prophet Malachi leads them back to Genesis 2, Did not He make one? Both the record of Genesis 2:18-25, and the comment of the Saviour in Matthew 19:4-6 stress the fact that to Adam God gave one wife. Yet, continued the prophet, this limitation was not due to any deficiency, He had the residue of the spirit (or breath), and could have provided Adam with a number of wives, had He so intended. At marriage man and wife become one flesh, and this holy unity is designed by God to further His purpose; He sought thereby a seed of God. This fact will become more evident when we are examining the teaching of Scripture concerning the seed of the serpent.

Coming to the genealogy of Matthew 1 we observe that it is the book of the generations of Jesus Christ, the Son of David, the Son of Abraham, the Son of Mary, Emmanuel, God with us. In that genealogy there is a name that strikes us, it is Zorobabel. We have already seen that the Hebrew word for seed is zera and so Zorobabel, or Zerubbabel as it is written in the Old Testament speaks either of the seed, or the shoot of Babel or Confusion, or of those who were scattered in Babylon. It is arresting, whatever its primary meaning may be for another reason, and that is its place in the genealogy found in Luke 3. Zerubbabel is called the son of Shealtiel or Salathiel (Ezra 3:2,8; Hag. 1:1; Matt. 1:12; Luke 3:27), but in 1 Chronicles 3:19 he is called the son of Pedaiah, the brother of Salathiel (17,18).

We may not know just exactly what occurred, but that something of importance happened we gather by consulting the genealogy given in Luke 3. There, we read once more of Zorobabel and Salathiel (Luke 3:27). At first one may see nothing remarkable in this fact. Are not Abraham, Isaac, Jacob and David found in both genealogies? Why should not these two men figure in both? The answer is that David had two sons Solomon and Nathan. The line that is pursued in Matthews genealogy is that through Solomon, but the line pursued by Luke is that through Nathan. Now no man can be the son of his own uncle, and consequently when we read in Luke that Salathiel was the son of Neri who was in direct descent from Nathan, we must understand the expression to mean son in law and this is substantiated by examination of the passage.

Jesus Himself began to be about thirty years of age, being legally reckoned (nomizo) the son of Joseph, who in his turn was legally reckoned the son of Heli. Heli was the father of Mary (Doctor John Lightfoot quoting Hieros Chagigah), and Joseph the son of Jacob (Matt. 1:16) became his son by marriage. There is however more in this genealogy than meets the eye. To illustrate our point, let us turn back to Genesis 36. It is clear from verses 24 and 25 that Anah was a man. He fed his fathers asses, and was the father of Aholibamah his daughter. With this knowledge let us read Genesis 36:2. Aholibamah the daughter of Anah the daughter of Zibeon.

This reads, on the surface, as though Anah a man, is called the daughter of Zibeon. The truth is of course that the genealogy should read, Aholibamah was the daughter of her father Anah, and so Aholibamah was also the daughter of Zibeon, not that her father Anah was the daughter of Zibeon. So, when we read in the genealogy of the Saviour, the words which was the son of that recur throughout, they refer always to Christ.
Jesus (as was legally reckoned) the son of Joseph, and so the son of Heli, and at length the son of Adam and finally the Son of God.
Luke does not teach here that Adam was the son of God, the phrase is a continuous and unbroken succession from Jesus Christ to God His Father, Joseph at one end of the scale and Adam at the other being but human links in the chain. Owing to the failure of Jechoniah who was written childless it appears that a marriage took place uniting the line of Zerobabel through Solomon, with the line that descended from Nathan, and so to Mary the mother of the Christ, the womans Seed. Both Matthew and Luke speak of the virgin birth of Christ, but this is too solemn a subject to attempt to crowd into a paragraph here.

If we would be fully equipped, we must give our attention to the teaching of Scripture regarding the Seed of Abraham, the Seed of David, the bearing of Romans 16:20 upon the prophecy of Genesis 3:15, the purpose of the words relative to the parable of the Sower How then will ye know all parables? (Mark 4:13), and the words of Galatians 3:16 and 29 Not, And to seeds, as of many; but as of one, And to thy seed, which is Christ, Then are ye Abrahams seed, but some of these aspects must be omitted in the present survey.


The Corruption of Man
and
the Preservation of the Seed

One of the illuminating discoveries that the student of Scripture makes, is the fact that at the call of Abraham we have traversed but eleven chapters of the book, but in time have moved half way from Adam to Christ. There is at first sight an element of disproportion in this fact. If we take a chapter as a standard unit, we have the following. There are 939 chapters in the Old Testament and consequently eleven chapters form only one eighty-fifth part of the whole. Yet the time covered by the one eighty-fifth portion of the Old Testament from the creation of Adam to the birth of Abraham is 2008 years (reckoning Adam as 4004 b.c. and the birth of Abraham to be 1996 b.c., which for the present purpose is near enough to be accepted without dispute). This leaves 1996 years from Abraham to Christ, and as the year 2002 b.c. is exactly halfway between Adam and Christ it will be seen that it is correct to say that when one reaches the twelfth chapter of Genesis, the record is chronologically half-way through the Old Testament. The apparent disproportion in the record is explained by the purpose that lies behind the historical record.

If it had been the Divine intention to have satisfied the human mind with a scientific explanation of Creation, can we hope that 939 chapters, or the whole of the Old Testament would have been sufficient? Had it been the Divine intention to have put on record a history of the world, then inasmuch as there are seventy nations listed in Genesis 10, at least seventy separate Bibles would have been necessary. Nor is this all, even though we have so great a literature of Israel, we are obliged to admit that the half has not been told. In some cases we have a fairly detailed account of some episode in a familys history, in other cases, the reign of a king is compressed into a few verses. When we become aware that the Bible is concerned with Redemption, and Redemption is concerned with sin and death, then its apparent disproportion suddenly takes new shape, its omissions are readily understood, and the call of Abraham and the history of the chosen people are seen in something of their true light.

Now closely allied with redemption is the purpose of God in the Seed, and it is because the channel through which the Seed should come is narrowed down to the line of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, that the history of Israel becomes the history of the conflict between the seed of the woman and the seed of the serpent. References to the seed form the link between Adam and Abraham. The attack by Cain upon his brother Abel manifested the enmity that existed between the two seeds, and the birth of Seth was acclaimed with the joyful words God hath appointed me another seed instead of Abel, whom Cain slew (Gen. 4:25). The line of Cain is given in Genesis 4:16-24, a line containing names identical in some cases, and similar in others, to names that are found in the true line through Seth, an indication and a warning, that deception and misdirection are the methods adopted by the Enemy to divert the testimony of the Scriptures away from the true seed, to the false.

Cains first child is called Enoch, and so, when Jude would refer to Enoch who walked with God, he is careful to speak of him as the seventh from Adam (Jude 14). The succeeding names in the line of Cain, namely Irad, Methusael, and Lamech who boasted of his prowess and used the phrase sevenfold and seventy and sevenfold, are not unlike the names that occur in Genesis 5, namely Jared, which differs from Irad by one letter, and Methuselah which could easily be confused with Methusael, while Lamech who made no boast like his evil name-sake, nevertheless has this in common, that he lived seven hundred and seventy and seven years. This Lamech had a son Noah, the other Lamech had two sons, with whom the line of Cain ends.

When the genealogy came to be written as a preface to the book of the true succession, it reads Adam, Sheth, Enosh (1 Chron. 1:1), and the name of Cain is blotted out of the record, never occurring after Genesis 4, in the remainder of the Old Testament. A son was born to Seth, whom he called Enos, and the Scripture adds as a comment Then began men to call upon the name of the Lord (Gen. 4:26). As the passage stands in the A.V., it would give cause for rejoicing to think that, consequent upon the extinction of the line of Cain and the continuance of the line through Seth, godliness was now established in the earth. It is however evident from the early pages of Genesis, that men called upon the name of the Lord before the days of Enos, and that extreme ungodliness had so developed by the time that Enoch lived, as to call for the pronouncement of judgment by the Lord (Jude 15), and the prophecy of the coming Flood, for the name of Enochs son, Methuselah, means At his death it shall be.

That there was something hidden beneath the surface in Genesis 4:26 the following notes will make evident. The LXX inserts the verb elpizo to hope and reads as follows: ... Enos: he hoped to call on the nam e of the Lord. The translators of the A.V. also were not quite satisfied, for they insert in the margin the words Or, to call themselves by the name of the Lord. Now one may call himself by the name of the Lord for good, or for evil reasons, and there is a persistent tradition from early days, to show that the Rabbinical interpretation of these words understood them to be evil in intent. The Targum of Onkelos reads: then in his days the sons of men desisted from praying in the name of the Lord. The Targum of Jonathan says: That was the generation in whose days they began to err, and to make themselves idols, and surnamed their idols by the name of the Word of the Lord. Rashi reads:
Then was there profanation in calling on the name of the Lord,
and Maimonides in a treatise on idolatry, traces its probable origin to the days of Enos. With this interpretation The Companion Bible is in entire agreement. To the English reader there does not appear in the words began to call anything that suggests profanity; yet, if masters of the language have consistently represented the passage as so doing, the English reader will naturally desire to become more closely acquainted with the original.

The word translated began is the Hebrew verb chalal, but the idea of beginning is entirely secondary. Chalal primarily means to perforate or pierce through. Thus to wound Psalm 109:22; Isaiah 53:5. From this primitive meaning comes the derived sense of laying open, giving access to and so to profane as one might a sanctuary (Lev. 19:8), and is used of profaning seed (Lev. 21:15). Chalal is translated in the A.V. be defiled, polluted, profaned, and prostitute, seventy times! The word chalal occurs in Genesis just eight times, and we give the references in order to provide every help possible in arriving at a true understanding of the passage before us:

Genesis
4:26 Then began men to call upon the name of the Lord.
6:1 When men began to multiply.
9:20 Noah began to be an husbandman.
10:8 Nimrod ... he began to be a mighty one.
11:6 This they begin to do.
41:54 The seven years of dearth began to come.
44:12 He searched, and began at the eldest.
49:3,4 Reuben ... then defiledst thou it.

It is not without significance that the one occasion in Genesis where the verb chalal is translated defile, the reference is to Reuben who committed a defiling sin against his father and so lost the excellency of the firstborns position. Here was a most definite attempt to pollute the seed and is but one of many similar attempts that are recorded in the book of Genesis. The second reference, Genesis 6:1 is recorded as a preface to the violation of Gods will by the sons of God, another attack upon the seed. Even the innocent record Noah began to be an husbandman is but a preface to his drunkenness and the illegitimate begetting of Canaan (Gen. 9:20-27), (see later in this article) and Nimrod stands as the head of the abomination that is associated with Babylon throughout the entire Word of God.

Genesis 11:6 also is connected with Babylonian rebellion, this they begin to do being balanced by which they have imagined to do. The reader will see, therefore, that there is good ground for the suggested translation began to profanely call in Genesis 4:26. Eminent and learned men are of opinion that the word rendered began should be translated began profanely; and that the spirit of inspiration has recorded the fact in this place, as being the first public step in that course of audacious impiety which was rapidly manifesting itself, and by which the ambitious and infidel leaders arrogated to themselves the name, prerogatives and attributes of Divinity (Robt. Jamieson D.D.).

The line of Cain might be extinct, but the Enemy of truth was still active, and was preparing the minds of men for the next invasion of humanity and attack upon the purity of the seed, as revealed in Genesis 6. The next occurrence of the word seed in Genesis is found in chapter 7, where the purpose of the Ark is indicated to keep seed alive upon the face of all the earth (Gen. 7:1-3). Something most terrible must have taken place since the days of Enos, for so marvellous a provision for the preservation of seed to be called for. That terrible thing was the corruption of mans way upon the earth, and the consequent threat of a deluge. Genesis 6 deals with a phenomenon so unnatural that the mind at first turns from it and searches for a more reasonable interpretation than that which lies upon the surface. As this chapter is to the world of Noah and his three sons, what Genesis 3 is to Adam and the entire race, we must spare no pains in our endeavor to understand its teaching. Who, and what are the sons of God? In what way could such beings take to themselves wives? and how could such wives bear them children? How are we to understand the word giants? and what is the meaning of the words And after that in Genesis 6:4? What is the significance of the word perfect when applied to Noah (Gen. 6:9), and what the intention of the words all flesh had corrupted his way upon the earth? (Gen. 6:12). These subjects should be studied by the student of the Bible in the context of the seed of the serpent.

The Preservation of the Seed in Noah

In direct contrast with the prevailing corruption, the patriarch Noah stands out in the record of Genesis 6, as a notable exception.
But Noah found grace in the eyes of the Lord (Gen. 6:8).
The wickedness of man was so great in the earth and every imagination of the thoughts of his heart only evil continually, that we read the extraordinary statement And it repented the Lord that He had made man on the earth, and it grieved Him at His heart (Gen. 6:6). This word repented challenges us. In what way can God be said to repent? This is not the only occasion when repentance is predicated of the Lord. At the intercession of Moses, the Lord repented of the evil which He thought to do unto His people (Exod. 32:14); this repentance is repeated in the days of David (2 Sam. 24:16); and this repentance is commemorated in Psalm 106:45. It was the complaint of Jonah that he knew full well that God being merciful would repent if only Nineveh would turn to Him (Jonah 3:9,10; 4:2).

These gracious repentings we can perhaps understand, but it is strange indeed to read that the Lord repented that He had made man. In the first place we may say that repenting and being grieved at the heart are instances of the figure of speech known as anthropopatheia, a figure which ascribes human attributes to God. The Hebrews called this mode of speech Derek Benai Adam The way of Adam, and without such condescension on the part of God, man could never apprehend His revelation. But conceding all this, and admitting that the use of such parts of the body as face, nostril, eyes, ears and hands with reference to God are accommodations to our limitations, we nevertheless believe that they stand for realities, even though we can affix to such spiritual realities no human name.

In like manner, though we may not take the words grief, anger, jealousy and other similar affections and feelings at their surface value, we nevertheless know that they stand for something equivalent on the high plane of Divine experience. Consequently we are to gather from Genesis 6:6, that something of extreme antipathy to the purpose of God and creation had come in and spoiled the work of Gods hands, grieved His heart, and made Him repent that He had made man. In the language of the parable, the reason is found in the fact that an enemy hath done this, and that with reference to two sowings of seed (Matt. 13:28). Throughout the Bible we have the consciousness of a conflict, a conflict between good and evil, darkness and light, God and Satan, and that the battle is intensely real, making demands upon the Wisdom and Power of the Almighty, and culminating in the sparing not of His Beloved Son. If such inroads had been made into the nature of mankind by the evil one, that it could be said, all flesh had corrupted his way upon the earth, then God must act and act drastically if the situation were to be saved. The word translated corrupt in Genesis 6:11 and 12, and the word translated destroy in Genesis 6:17 is the Hebrew shachath. The only remedy was to destroy it (de facto) as it had become destroyed (de jure) (The Companion Bible). At the time of the sounding of the seventh angel, the wheel has come full circle, as it was in the days of Noah and we read that the time had come to destroy them which destroy (or corrupt) the earth (Rev. 11:18). Standing separate and almost alone in the midst of well nigh universal corruption was Noah. It is not without significance that the name Noah is derived from the selfsame Hebrew word translated repent. The Hebrew word is nacham and is found for the first time in Scripture in the words of Lamech This same shall comfort us (Gen. 5:29), and refers to the Ark and the Flood. The next occurrence of nacham is in Genesis 6:6 where it is written it repented the Lord. The reason why the one Hebrew word can have such opposite meanings is that primarily nacham means a change of mind or affection and obviously the mind may change sometimes in one way, sometimes in another. God changed His mind regarding mankind as a whole and destroyed them, He changed His mind about Noah in particular and saved him. What constituted the essential difference between Noah and the rest of mankind? We shall find upon examining the history of Israel that they are denounced as wicked, and corrupt and evil, yet even though enemies because of the gospel, they are beloved because of the fathers, for the gifts and calling of God are without repentance (Rom. 11:29). Israel, for all their sins were the chosen seed, and so were saved. Even after the Flood, the words are written I will not again curse the ground any more for mans sake; for (although, Heb. ki) the imagination of mans heart is evil from his youth (Gen. 8:21). What was it that the Lord saw in the generation before the flood that demanded total destruction? It was the corrupting of the seed, and it is the separation of Noah from this that marks him out in Genesis 6.
These are the generations of Noah: Noah was a just man and perfect in his generations, and Noah walked with God (6:9).
Noah, like Enoch, walked with God, but this was not all. Noah found grace, the first to so find in all Scripture, but in addition Noah was perfect in his generations. As the word generations occurs twice in this passage, let us note that the first word is a translation of toledoth family history, and can read either forward or backward, can speak of either ones ancestors or of ones descendants, but the second word is a translation of the Hebrew dor which refers to Noahs contemporaries, the men living at the same time as himself. With regard to his contemporaries Noah was perfect.

This word, which translates the Hebrew tamim means without blemish and primarily refers to physical, not moral perfection. It is in constant use to describe the blemishless character of a sacrificial animal (Exod. 12:5; Lev. 1:3). Job was described as perfect, as well as upright (Job. 1:1,8; 2:3), and Jacob is described as a plain man (Gen. 25:27), using the same word as is employed in Job and translated perfect, while undefiled is the translation of the word in Song of Solomon 5:2 and 6:9. The testimony of Genesis 6:9 is that Noah was uncontaminated so far as his pedigree was concerned, and the channel through which the Seed of the Woman could come, though narrowed down by the well nigh universal corruption that had set in, was still preserved.

As we proceed with the history of the Seed of the Woman we shall assemble a series of Divine interpositions, each one marked by its own peculiar character, and together building up a system of teaching that points irrevocably to Christ. Let us note the following as a beginning of this special phase of truth:
  1. The Seed is diverted from Adam, at the Fall, and is referred to as The Seed of the Woman. This introduces the element of miracle or a dealing by God that is not natural. We must never lose sight of the supernatural associations of The Seed.
  2. The Seed is in the second place bound up with vicarious suffering. His heel shall be wounded in the conflict with the serpent.
  3. Ultimate victory is prophesied for the Seed of the Woman, for although in the conflict He shall be wounded in the heel, it is the head of the serpent that is bruised.
  4. The next principle that emerges is the principle of substitution. The attack upon Abel is countered by the appointment of Seth, or as the Hebrew reads, God hath Sethed me another seed. Seth was appointed instead of Abel whom Cain slew (Gen. 4:25).
  5. The sending of the Flood, and the destruction of every living person except the eight souls preserved in the Ark, or as Peter puts it, God spared not the old world, but saved Noah, reveals the solemn fact that the question of numbers does not enter into the plan. If the seed can be preserved, though it cost the destruction of millions, the Lord will do it. If such a conclusion should appear harsh, let us remember that the selfsame word spare is used of Christ He that spared not His own Son.
  6. The provision of the Ark introduces into the story another aspect of the redemptive side of the story of the seed. It is common knowledge with students that the noun and verb pitch it within and without with pitch (Gen. 6:14) translate the words kaphar and kopher, which are used by Moses and the rest of the Old Testament Scriptures for the propitiation made by the sacrificial offerings, indicating in fuller measure the nature of the bruising that should be received in the conflict with the serpent. It pleased the Lord to bruise Him said Isaiah, showing that even though wicked hands took and crucified the Son of God, that bruising of His heel was at the same time the sacrificial offering made for sin. The word bruise in Isaiah, however, is not the word used in Genesis 3.
  7. Finally, or at least so far as we have gone, the preservation of the seed is associated with newness of life, resurrection ground, the beginning of a new world, and a new day. This is forced upon the attention of the reader throughout the record of the Deluge by the fact that the date upon which the Ark rested on one of the mountains of Ararat, namely the seventeenth day of the seventh month, became after the revision of the calendar at the Passover (Exod. 12:2), the third day after the offering of the Passover on the fourteenth day of the month, and so the very day of the Saviours resurrection. The emphasis upon the first year the first month the first day in Genesis 8:13 carries the idea forward, while the numerical features associated with Noah (the eighth person) and his family (eight souls), each emphasizing the number eight and the commencing of a new period, round off this testimony to resurrection and newness.
Although the purpose of God concerning the Seed was so far safeguarded, the words already noted in Genesis 6:4, also after that, prepare us for further conflict.


Abraham, The Hebrew

When Noah and his family stepped out from the Ark, they stepped out into a world that was empty and devoid of life, and to them the words uttered at the creation of Adam were repeated:
Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth (Gen. 9:1).
The dominion given to Adam is passed on to Noah in modified terms, and instead of the sun, moon and stars being indicated as signs (Heb. oth) the rainbow was appointed for a token (Heb. oth). This is another feature that we must remember, namely the changed tokens that accompany the dispensational changes that mark the onward story of the Seed. If the Seed is to continue, it must of necessity come through Noah and one of his sons. The blessing pronounced in Genesis 9:26,27 indicates that the choice fell upon Shem:
Blessed be the Lord God of Shem ... he (Japheth) shall dwell in the tents of Shem.
Japheth was the eldest brother (Gen. 10:21; 1 Chron. 1:5), but grace seldom recognizes any precedence in the flesh. Consequently we find the generations of Shem lead on to Terah and so to Abraham (Gen. 11:10-32).
Unto Shem also, the father of all the children of Eber, the brother of Japheth the elder, even to him were children born (Gen. 10:21).
The additional note the father of all the children of Eber calls for attention. No such clause follows the reference either to Japheth or to Ham. Moreover, we observe that Eber himself is not mentioned again until verse 24.

Shem had five sons, and Eber is the descendant of Arphaxad, the third of those that are named in Genesis 10:22. Now Eber had two sons, Peleg so named because in his days the earth was divided, and Joktan. Joktans descendants are named, but Pelegs descendants are reserved until The generations of Shem are given in Genesis 11:10, where Joktan finds no place. The line of the Seed therefore from Noah, runs as follows: Noah, Shem, Arphaxad, Eber, Peleg and so on to Terah, the father of Abram. Shem is called the father of all the children of Eber for this reason.

The record of Genesis 10 is the record of the nations, and the words By these were the nations divided in the earth show that the settlement of the nations and the lands inhabited by them is the important theme, and it is the descendants of Joktan and their lands that is recorded in Genesis 10 whereas, in Genesis 11 Joktan is omitted, but the generations of Peleg are given in detail and this proves to be of the most importance, for this is the line of the true seed. Our attention therefore is called to the fact that the line of Joktan does not exhaust the descendants of Shem. The two names Eber and Peleg demand our attention. The Hebrew name Eber means beyond, and occurs in such phrases as beyond Jordan, on this side Jordan or on the other side Jordan (Gen. 50:10; Num. 22:1; Josh. 2:10). The verb abarmeans to pass or to pass over and is often used in connection with the passing over of the Israelites into the land of Canaan (Deut. 12:10; Josh. 3:16). In Genesis 14:13 Abraham is called The Hebrew. This is partly explained in Joshua 24:2,3.
Your fathers dwelt on the other side of the flood ... I took your father Abraham from the other side of the flood.
This flood is the River Euphrates, the word translated flood being the same as that which is rendered river, meaning the river Euphrates (Josh. 1:4). The LXX translates Abraham the Hebrew, by the words ho perates the one who crossed over, the word peran being employed in Genesis 50:10, and Joshua 2:10 cited above. While therefore Eber had many descendants, Abraham stands out pre-eminently not only as one descendant out of many, but as the one who fulfilled the meaning of the name. Peleg too, is associated with rivers, and is so translated nine times, and once stream in the Old Testament (Psa. 1:3). Job uses the word palag when he speaks of God Who hath divided (palag) a watercourse (Job 38:25). The same form of the word, pelaggah is twice translated divisions (Jud. 5:15,16) and once rivers (Job 20:17).

Rivers formed natural boundaries in ancient days, so much so that in English the word rival comes from the idea that men living on opposite banks of a river would be divided in their loyalties.

It is not true to say that the words of Genesis 10:25 the earth was divided cannot refer to the division of the earth as an inheritance, but only by some geological division as that which has formed the continents, for the feminine form of both the Hebrew and the Chaldee words is employed to speak of the division of both families and of the priests (2 Chron. 35:5; Ezra 6:18). In Pelegs day the earth was divided among the nations, according to the number of the children of Israel (Deut. 32:8). The reader will discover that there are seventy nations mentioned by name in Genesis 10, and the words When the Most High divided to the nations their inheritance, when He separated the sons of Adam, He set the bounds of the people according to the number of the children of Israel have regard to that number seventy.
Seventy souls went down with Jacob into Egypt, that they might restore the seventy families by the confusion of tongues. For these seventy souls were equal to all the families of the whole world (Zohar).
How good is thy love towards Me, O thou congregation of Israel? It is more than that of the seventy nations (Targum on the Song Solomon).
So conscious was Israel of this high place, and so equally conscious that the Gentile nations would be provoked should they realize it, that we find the LXX reads according to the number of the angels of God, for the Gentile world would not know that to each nation had been appointed an angel, as is indicated in Daniel 10 The prince of Grecia, the prince of the kingdom of Persia and Michael your prince. So precious in the sight of God is The Seed, that He counts the seventy souls that went down into Egypt, who formed the nucleus of the nation of Israel, of more importance than the whole seventy nations that inhabited the rest of the world, and in order to appreciate this concentration of the Lords care, we must continue the story of the generations until we arrive at Abraham, the father of the great nation, whose seed is prominent in Genesis 12:7. While both Joktan and Peleg are mentioned in Genesis 10:25, Peleg only appears in the genealogy of Genesis 11:10-26, for the seed only is there in view. The line is preserved from Eber through Peleg to Terah, the father of Abram. Mens attempt to make us a name and their consequent scattering (Gen. 11:1-9) was but another attempt to frustrate the purpose of God. The word name is actually Shem.
The chapter begins with mans attempt to unify mankind, and ends with Gods new provision to unify all in blessing with Abrahams seed (The Companion Bible).
When we reach the generations of Terah, we are at the central generation of the eleven which are found in the book of Genesis. In both the conclusion of Shems genealogy (Gen. 11:26), and the opening of Terahs, Abrams name stands first. although, as subsequent study will reveal, Abram was not the eldest of Terahs sons. Like Shem, Abram is put first because he was the chosen channel of the Seed. For the first time in Scripture appears the statement that any woman was barren, and this is said of Sarai, Abrams wife.

But Sarai was barren: she had no child (Gen. 11:30). So into the story of the coming seed is now interposed human inability, in order that it may be demonstrated that the true seed is indeed of God. This Hebrew word translated barren aqar, signifies a mere stock or stem without branches, a dry tree. Bateman says of Ecclesiastes 3:2, where the A.V. reads a time to pluck up, to lop as trees, cut them close to the stock or stem. This supernatural element is emphasized later in the story of Ishmael and Isaac, and a definite reference is made to it in Romans 9, where we read In Isaac shall thy seed be called, that is, They which are the children of the flesh, these are not the children of God: but the children of the promise are counted for the seed (Rom. 9:7,8).

Immediately following the statement concerning Sarais barrenness, comes the record of Terahs trek towards Canaan and his tarrying and death at Haran. We learn from Stephen in Acts 7:2, that The God of glory appeared unto our father Abraham, when he was in Mesopotamia, before he dwelt in Charran. Terah, it would appear was moved by the revelation given to his son, and took Abram, Lot and Sarai, but by so doing contravened the distinct commandment Get thee out of thy country, and from thy kindred moreover, although they went forth from Ur of the Chaldees to go into the land of Canaan they did not accomplish this purpose for we read they came unto Haran, and dwelt there. This partial obedience to the separating command of God, will be met again. For example in Exodus 8:25 where Pharaoh substitutes for the three days journey, Go ye, sacrifice to your God in the land or Sacrifice to the Lord your God in the wilderness: only ye shall not go very far away (Exod. 8:28).

According to Hebrews 11, Abraham when he obeyed God did not know the land that God had promised him, and so the language of Genesis 11:31 written after the event must be considered as supplemental. Terah, whose name among other meanings seems to be wanderer, was evidently moved by the call that had come to his son, but the thing to be noticed is that although he made that trek from Ur of the Chaldees, as far North as Haran, he never passed over the Euphrates. After 600 miles separation from Ur he still dwelt in the same country, and had in reality made no essential change. Terahs movement was like many religious movements, they fail in essentials.

Abraham was called The Hebrew for he passed over the dividing river. Terah was never a Hebrew. He came out of Ur but he died in Haran, a city of the same country. He had but changed one denomination for another. Terah died in Haran, and until he died he was a hindrance to faithful obedience. Terah represented the old man, who can be religious and do almost everything except pass over. Only when the old man (Rom. 6:6) dies, can the believer rise and walk in newness of life. We are however tracing the history of the Seed, and must not allow ourselves too many doctrinal excursions, but the reader will doubtless perceive that the spiritual history of the individual believer finds an echo many times in the record of the Seed and its conflict.

Cain and Canaan, were Both of that Wicked One

As the different attacks are made by the enemy upon the life or purity of the true seed, certain terms are introduced, which mark the spiritual side of the conflict, and reveal the character of the provision and protection afforded by the Lord. These we shall have to consider together as a whole when we have pursued this theme further, but the reader may be helped by an anticipation of this particular study. Certain words or phrases emerge as the story of the seed progresses, and the following will indicate the nature of this particular aspect of truth.

(1)     The first prophecy of the Seed, Genesis 3:15
The bruising of head and heel.
(2)     The second reference, Seth, 4:25
Instead -- the principle of substitution.
(3)     The third reference, Noah, 5:29
Comfort because of curse.
(4)     The fourth reference, The Ark, 6:14
Propitiation (pitch).
(5)     The fifth reference, Barrenness, 11:30
The flesh set aside.

These items will give the reader some idea of what we intend, but the above list is temporary, and will be revised when the subject is considered as a whole.

At the moment we are concerned with the onward progress of the true seed, and have reached the time when, at the death of Terah, Abraham was free to pass over and become Abraham the Hebrew. At Genesis 12, the nations of the earth go into the background and only come into the record as they touch the land and people of Israel. The channel through which the Seed should come is now narrowed down to one man, a descendant of Shem, and to that man a promise was given of a land and of a seed.
Unto thy seed will I give this land (Gen. 12:7).
The delay occasioned by the action of Terah was seized upon by the enemy as will be made clear if we put two passages together:
And Terah took Abram ... to go into the land of Canaan; and they came unto Haran, and dwelt there (Gen. 11:31).
And Abram ... went forth to go into the land of Canaan; and into the land of Canaan they came ... and the Canaanite was then in the land (Gen. 12:5,6).
Before we can rightly proceed, some understanding of the Scriptural meaning and intention of the Canaanite is called for, as it is evident that this people were Satans countercheck to the Divine plan. Canaan was one of the sons of Ham, his brothers being Cush, Mizraim and Phut (Gen. 10:6). From Cush, came Nimrod, the beginning of whose kingdom was Babel, and from Canaan sprang Sidon, Heth, and the Jebusite, Amorite and others, who became known as Canaanites. The circumstances of the birth of Canaan are unrevealed, but the record of Genesis 9:20-29 is highly significant and calls for examination.
And Noah began to be an husbandman, and he planted a vineyard (Gen 9:20).
Why does the Scripture use this form of speech, why say he began to be? The reader will remember that we found it necessary to retranslate Genesis 4:26 Then began men to call upon the name of the Lord, Then men profanely called upon the name of the Lord. We find this word began in the opening of that ominous passage Genesis 6 when the sons of God saw the daughters of men, and when there were giants in the earth. We observe that this same word began is used of Nimrod, the rebel. He began to be a mighty one (Gen. 10:8). At the building of the tower of Babel the Lord said this they begin to do (Gen. 11:6), so that we find that in the space of Genesis 1 to 11, which covers the history of the ancient world from Creation to Abraham, chalal occurs five times, each occurrence being associated with an attack upon the purpose of God, either the profaning of the name of the Lord, the irruption of the sons of God, the founding of Babel, and this reference to Noah. There is evidence that at the Flood such disturbance took place as to alter materially the meteorological conditions, and now, for the first time wine fermented, with the result that Noah was drunken (Gen. 9:21), and not only so, was uncovered. Noah in many things takes the place of Adam in the earth.

A comparison of Genesis 9 with what had previously been said of Adam will reveal several similarities. Among them let us notice Adam and Noah are both associated with a garden planted, indeed the Hebrew word nata to plant occurs in Genesis 1 to 11 but twice, namely at Genesis 2:8 The Lord God planted a garden and here in Genesis 9:20 Noahs downfall is connected with an act he drank of the wine, even as the fall of Adam is connected with eating the fruit of the forbidden tree. In both cases, there is a strange sequel. Adam and Noah are found naked the only references to nakedness in this early section of Genesis. Adam covered his nakedness with fig-leaves, Shem and Japheth covered the nakedness of their father with a garment. God subsequently clothed Adam with a coat of skin. The enmity between the two seeds is revealed to Adam, and the earth is cursed for his sake. When Noah awoke, he strangely cursed, not Ham, but the son of Ham, Canaan, who was doomed to be a servant of servants.

At the door of the garden of Eden, the Lord caused to tabernacle (placed Gen. 3:24) the Cherubim, and Noah continuing his prophecy, said He (the Lord) shall dwell ("tabernacle") in the tents of Shem (Gen. 9:27). These again being the only occurrence of shaken to dwell or tabernacle in Genesis 1 to 11.

These parallels are on the surface, but there is more, not so plainly stated but nevertheless implied. Is it not illuminating that immediately consequent upon the fall of man, the Lord should speak of child-birth (Gen. 3:16)? and is it not equally illuminating that Noah should speak of Canaan the unborn child of Ham, and not of Ham himself? In the case of Adam and Eve, there is the positive statement that Cain was of that wicked one (1 John 3:12), but nothing positive is said of Canaan, yet by the time one has read all that is written of the Canaanites, there is no room left for doubting that of Canaan it could have been written Canaan was of that wicked one also. In the record of Genesis 3 Adam is accompanied by his wife who is named and addressed. In Genesis 9, the wife of Noah is not specifically mentioned, but, when we remember that the expression thy fathers nakedness (Lev. 18:8) is definitely said to indicate thy fathers wife, and when we further know that the words spoken of Noah to be uncovered (Gen. 9:21) are the same as those used in Leviticus 18, the sin of Ham begins to assume a more serious aspect, a sin that brought with it a curse as we can see by reading Deuteronomy 27:20.

It appears from the combined testimony of the several passages, that Ham was guilty of the same sin as that of Reuben (Gen. 49:3,4), where the word defiled translates the Hebrew chalal already examined. If Ham, like Reuben, taking advantage of his fathers drunkenness was guilty of incest, the door was flung open once more for the Evil One to sow his seed, and the Canaanite was the dreadful result. The Canaanite would therefore take the place occupied by the giants before the Flood, and because the Seed was now known to be destined to come through Abraham, the Canaanite was concentrated in advance in the land of promise. The meaning of the word Canaan is, something low, and in a secondary sense, a merchant, trafficker or trader. The name Canaan carries with it the debasement pronounced by Noah as the following passages which use the verb kana will show to bring low (Job 40:12), to subdue (1 Chron. 17:10), to bring into subjection (Psa. 106:42). Their name reveals their end, the Canaanites whether physical or spiritual, must one day be subjected beneath the feet of the victorious Seed of the woman. When the time came for Isaac, the true seed to be provided with a wife, Abraham made his eldest servant sware by the God of heaven and by the God of the earth, that he would not take a wife for Isaac of the daughters of the Canaanites (Gen. 24:3). The Canaanites were to be driven out of the land of promise by Israel (Exod. 23:28), and by the Lord (Deut. 7:1); and were to be utterly destroyed (Deut. 20:17). Something of the horror with which this evil seed was held can be gathered by reading the whole of Ezra 9 and 10.
The people ... have not separated themselves from the people of the lands, doing according to their abominations, even of the Canaanites ... the holy seed have mingled themselves with the people of those lands (Ezra 9:1,2).
The land is said to have spued out the nations that inhabited Canaan; that the very land was defiled by their abominable customs (Lev. 18:24-30). Such are the Canaanites, and one can feel the relief in the prophets mind when he said,
In that day there shall be no more the Canaanite in the house of the Lord of Hosts (Zech. 14:21).
An illuminating chapter, in reference to the Canaanites and the possession of the land, is Deuteronomy 2. There, not only Israel but the Moabites, the children of Esau and the Ammonites, all blood relations of Israel, find their possessions already occupied by Emim and Anakim a people great, and many, and tall, giants dwelt therein in old time. These the Lord destroyed before them, and they succeeded them, and this is put forward as being parallel with the case of Israel:
As Israel did unto the land of his possession, which the Lord gave unto them (Deut. 2:12).
Later, in the experience of Abraham, he was to learn that there must be a waiting period, during which his seed should suffer affliction in a strange land, and this because the iniquity of the Amorites is not yet full (Gen. 15:16). If we admit the sovereign right of the Lord to destroy the corrupted people of the earth by a flood, and if we admit His justice in destroying the wicked cities of Sodom and Gomorrah; if we admit His patience and long-suffering while He waited for the Amorite to fill up the measure of his iniquity, we can accept the revealed fact that Israel was chosen as the destroying agent of this foul progeny of wickedness, who in their turn typify the spiritual wickednesses that confront those whose blessings are to be enjoyed, not in the land of Canaan, but in heavenly places.

In Isaac shall Thy Seed be Called

The history of the true seed has now been before us from Adam to Abraham. We have seen the line descending from Adam through Seth to Noah, and through Noah to Shem, and from Shem through Eber, Peleg, Terah, to Abraham. Of Abrahams sons, Ishmael is repudiated, and Isaac the child of promise, the child of resurrection power, carries forward the great purpose. This process of selection and repudiation still goes on. Isaac has two sons, Esau and Jacob, but Esau is set aside. Jacob has twelve sons, but Judah, the son of Leah, the first wife of Jacob, is chosen as the channel through whom the seed should come. Judah is the ancestor of David the King, and it is sufficient for Matthews purpose that he shows that Jesus was the Son of David and the Son of Abraham to prove that the promise concerning the true Seed had at length been fulfilled.

With the opening of the New Testament we leave promise, and begin fulfillment, and as our salvation and hope are bound up with the realization of the promise of God concerning the seed, we must still give our attention to the unfolding of this great theme.

We observe that throughout the gospels, Christ is referred to as the Son of David, but when we consider the testimony of Paul, he avoids the title Son of David and uses the deeper and more significant title The Seed of David. At first sight this distinction may savour of hair-splitting, for He Who is the Seed of David must also be his Son. Yet on the other hand it is also true that he who is the son of David may not necessarily be his seed in the full significance of that term. We all know that Solomon was a son of David, and most of us will remember two other sons, Nathan and Absalom, but how many of us know that in the genealogy given in 1 Chronicles 3:1-9, there are nineteen sons named? Six were born in Hebron, four were born in Jerusalem, and nine are listed without specifying either the name of their mother or the place of their birth. Even this list of nineteen sons is not complete, for the Chronicler adds besides the sons of the concubines (1 Chron. 3:9). In the course of time Davids strength began to fail, and claimant voices began to be heard regarding succession to the throne:
Adonijah the son of Haggith exalted himself, saying, I will be king (1 Kings 1:5).
Nathan the prophet visited Bathsheba and warned her of the danger, and advised her to go to the king and say:
Didst not thou, my lord, O King, swear unto thine handmaid, saying, Assuredly Solomon thy son shall reign after me, and he shall sit upon my throne? why then doth Adonijah reign? (1 Kings 1:13).
The result was that Solomon was proclaimed king, and the rest of Davids sons were set aside, so far as succession to the throne was concerned. Throughout the gospel of the kingdom, Matthew, the title The Son of David is reiterated, for Christ as the Son of David was born to sit upon the throne of David (Luke 1:32). When we turn from the gospel of the kingdom to the epistles of the church, we do not find Paul speaking of Christ as the Son of David, as we have said, he goes deeper, he calls him the Seed of David. As the Son Christ was the rightful king of Israel, but this title and rule did not comprehend all that was conceived by God at the beginning.

Paul does not obtrude into the epistles to the Church a title that would confuse these two departments of their redemptive purpose, he omits the kingdom title and uses the deeper and more significant title the Seed of David. Not only so, he uses this title when writing the epistle to the Romans (1:3), and he uses it again after the dispensation of the Mystery had come in (2 Tim. 2:8), and Timothy is called upon to remember this relationship, and that it formed an integral part of that which Paul called especially my gospel. In both passages the resurrection is prominent. While therefore Davids son Solomon and his successors are the heirs to the throne, Christ alone as Davids Seed carries the great primeval promise of God to its glorious consummation.

The Syrophoenician woman was made to realize that in Christ as the Son of David she had no place (Matt. 15:22), but the Seed of David was declared to be the Son of God with power by the resurrection (Rom. 1:4), and the good news associated with Him in that capacity was addressed to both Jew and Gentile. While the succession to the throne came through Solomon, Marys line descends through Nathan, Solomons brother, and so in Matthew we have The Son of David with special reference to the king and kingdom, whereas in Luke 3 we have The Seed of the Woman descending from David, through Nathan and Mary. Luke was the evangelist who labored so faithfully with the apostle Paul, and it is Lukes account rather than Matthews that stresses The Seed. In like manner Christ is called The Son of Abraham (Matt. 1:1) but is never so called by Paul, for just as we found that Paul speaks of Christ as the Seed of David, so also does he speak of Christ as the Seed of Abraham.
Now to Abraham and his seed were the promises made. He saith not, And to seeds, as of many; but as of one, And to thy seed, which is Christ (Gal. 3:16).
Many of the reference books that have been consulted make Paul quote from different passages in Genesis here. The Companion Bible refers the reader to Genesis 21:12 In Isaac shall thy seed be called. This passage is most certainly quoted in Romans 9:7, and it has one item that attracts it to Galatians 3:16, and that is, that the word seed here must be understood as being singular, because the singular verb follows it, it shall be called.

Turpies book on quotations refers Galatians 3:16 to Genesis 22:18. We feel however that Paul would remind us that he was meticulous in his quotation, even to the word and, and to thy seed, and consequently we must refer Galatians 3:16 to such texts as Genesis 17:7,8 or to Genesis 24:7, which in the LXX agrees with the words quoted in Galatians. To these passages can be added Genesis 13:15. It must be remembered that the Hebrew word zeraim seeds, in the plural means various kinds of grain, even as the plural spermata does in 1 Corinthians 15:38, and Ellicott says on this passage, We hold, therefore, that there is certainly a mystical meaning in the use of zera in Genesis 13:15 (and in 17:8): though the writer was not necessarily aware of it. If we read the context of Genesis 13:15, we are met with the stated fact that the word seed is used in the plural, for verse 16 goes on And I will make thy seed as the dust of the earth ... so ... shall thy seed also be numbered. The same is true of the context of Genesis 17:8, for the words in their generations, which come in verse 7 and in their generations which is repeated in verse 9, show that the word seed is used in the plural. If we continue in our reading of Galatians 3, until we get to verse 29 we shall read:
And if ye be Christs, then are ye Abrahams seed, and heirs according to the promise (Gal. 3:29).
So therefore, all the seed are in Christ, even as in Isaac the seed were called. In Romans 9, the apostle has more to say about this seed. The high privileges that belong to Israel, set in contrast with their rejection which was imminent in the day when Paul wrote the epistle to the Romans, drew from the apostle the argument of chapter 9:6-13.

The End ... That God May Be All in All
(1 Cor. 15:24-28)

The conflict between the two seeds arose out of the disobedience of man in relation to the knowledge of good and evil (Gen. 3). Our first parents were deceived. When writing to the believers at Rome (Rom. 16:18), the apostle said concerning some, that by good words (christologia) and fair speeches (eulogia) deceive the hearts of the simple (akakos). He then went on to speak of their obedience, saying that he would have them wise unto that which is good (agathos), and simple (akeraios) concerning evil. Now this word simple akeraios, occurs in the proverb wise as serpents, and harmless (akeraios) as doves (Matt. 10:16), where it is evident that the simplicity inculcated by the Lord is in marked contrast to the subtlety of the serpent. These words of the apostle, akakos and akeraios, occur in Romans 16:18 and 19, just before he writes the concluding section which deals with the revelation of the mystery which had been kept in silence (Rom. 16:25-27). This mystery refers to the relationship that exists between Adam, his fall, and his seed. It is therefore no surprise to us to find in Romans 16:20 a most definite reference to Genesis 3:
And the God of peace shall bruise Satan under your feet shortly.
Strictly speaking these are the last words of positive doctrine in Romans. All leads up to this. In Romans 1, Christ is seen as coming of the Seed of David according to the flesh, and at the last, is seen, together with His redeemed, fulfilling the primeval promise that the seed of the woman should bruise the serpents head. This climax is comparable with the end which shall be attained at 1 Corinthians 15:24-28, the last enemy there being not Satan, but that power which Satan wields through sin, namely death. The passage has in common with Romans 16:20 the words under ... feet. These words quoted in 1 Corinthians 15; in Ephesians 1; and in Hebrews 2 in the phrase Thou hast put all things under His feet, are cited from the eighth Psalm, which has as its subscription the words Upon Muth-labben.  The limitations of space forbid any attempt to enlarge on the subject here.

Psalm 8 looks in two directions, back to Adam and the limited dominion given to him, and forward to Christ, and the universal dominion given to Him. In Hebrews 2 the reference to the eighth Psalm is associated with His suffering and death, and to the world to come oikoumene. In 1 Corinthians 15 the reference to the eighth Psalm looks beyond the limitations of the habitable world, to the goal when God shall be all in all; while Ephesians 1 alludes to Psalm 8, when speaking of the principalities and powers that are subjected beneath the feet of Christ, in His capacity as Head over all things to the Church. The bruising of the serpents head was not accomplished however without extreme suffering on the part of the Great Deliverer -- He shall bruise His heel. It is not surprising that this primeval prophecy should have been known to the ancient world. The ancients confounded the name zeroashta the seed of the woman, interpreting the word ashta to mean fire, and so gave the name Zoroaster. Throughout the mythology of the ancient world, the struggle between the serpent and a Deliverer is well known.
And while sublime his awful hands are spread,
Beneath him rolls the dragons horrid head,
And his right foot unmoved appears to rest,
Fixed on the writhing monsters furnished crest
In Greek mythology the constellation that sets forth the crushing of the serpents head is called engonasis the kneller but this is owing to the confusion of tongues. In Chaldee E, the, nko, to crush, nahash a serpent, give us enkonahash, which became in Greek engonasis. The story of Achilles, vulnerable only in his heel, is also a most evident echo of Genesis 3:15. The word bruise used in Genesis 3:15 is the translation of the Hebrew shuph, which is by no means so simple a word. Authorities differ as to the primary meaning of the word. Gesenius derives the word from a root which meant, first to gape upon, then lie in wait, to fall upon. Davidson gives the second meaning to cover with darkness, which is very similar to Parkhursts to cover, overwhelm as with a tempest. This word is found in Job 9:17, He breaketh me with a tempest, and again in Psalm 139:11 Surely the darkness shall cover me. That some of the ancients understood this to be the meaning of the word shuph is clear; Symmachus uses episkepasei will hide, and a Hexaplar version kalupsei cover or veil. Shuph in a reduplicated form is used of a species of serpent so called from its concealing itself in the sand and in holes, and occurs in Genesis 49:17 Dan shall be a serpent by the way, an adder ... that biteth the horse heels.

Here it will be observed, two words occur that are also found in Genesis 3:15 bruise shuph (shephiphon adder), and aqeb heel, and this fact must be kept in mind when translating Genesis 3:15 The apostle, in Romans 16:20 employs the word suntribo to translate shuph bruise. In Romans 3:16 the apostle uses the word in slightly different form, suntrimma, Destruction and misery are in their ways. Suntribo is translated elsewhere in the New Testament bruise (Matt. 12:20), break, or break in pieces (Mark 5:4; 14:3; Luke 4:18 [in the Received Text]; John 19:36 and Rev. 2:27). The English word triturate, to reduce to fine powder by rubbing, trite, worn out by constant use or repetition, tribulation, from the wearing down effect of a threshing instrument, and diatribe, a discourse which wears away time, will no doubt occur to the reader. Taking all things, therefore, into consideration, the bruising of Genesis 3:15 and of Romans 16:20 indicate an agonizing and protracted process, wearing in its effect, and associated with concealment, darkness and attack. To the fact that it is a protracted struggle, the record of the ages bears witness. That it was agonizing, the cry both of Gethsemane and of Calvary reveal:
  • All Thy waves and Thy billows are gone over Me (Psa. 42:7).
  • My God, My God, why hast Thou forsaken Me? (Psa. 22:1).
  • This is your hour, and the power of darkness (Luke 22:53).
  • From the sixth hour there was darkness over all the land unto the ninth hour (Matt. 27:45).
The glorious outcome of this dreadful conflict is given in Isaiah 53:
He shall see His seed ... He shall see of the travail of His soul, and shall be satisfied (Isa. 53:10,11).
Into the redemptive work of Christ, none can enter. He alone could be the sin bearer, He alone could be the ransom. Yet, the primeval prophecy of Genesis 3:15 speaks not only of enmity between Satan and Christ, but between the womans seed and the serpents seed. Inasmuch as all the seed are found in Christ (Gal. 3:16,29), they, like the apostle himself fill up that which is behind of the afflictions of Christ (Col 1:24). Like the seed of Abraham they suffer affliction, and are kept waiting for their inheritance, while the iniquity of the Amorite reaches its fullness (Gen. 15:13-16). All the seed shall at length come out with great substance, they shall enter into their possessions, and when that day comes there shall be no more the Canaanite (Zech. 14:21), even as there shall be no more death, curse, sorrow and sin. Satan and his angels shall no more corrupt the true seed, nor hinder and frustrate the purposes of God.

He shall see His seed;
He shall see of the travail of His soul;
He shall be satisfied.

Come quickly Christ Jesus our Lord.

All God's Blessings,
The Believers

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Jonah, and the Great Fish
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MAN!! What Bible are you reading?
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The Mystery is ... Shame on You?
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Ephesians 1:7
In whom we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of his grace;
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Good Newsflash

Did you know that The Great Mystery or Secret was hid in God from Ages and Generations until it was first revealed to the Apostle Paul?  Ephesians 3:9 states "And to make all {men} see what {is} the fellowship of The Mystery, which from the beginning of the world hath been hid in God, who created all things by Jesus Christ:"  Click to read more.

 

Frequently Asked Questions

1. In John 16:12,13 we read, I have yet many things to say unto you, but ye cannot bear them now. Howbeit when He, the Spirit of truth is come, He will guide you into all truth . Does this refer to the administration of the mystery?

In Eph 3:1-4 the apostle Paul makes it clear that it was by a special administration of the grace of God that he was the sole recipient of the gospel of the mystery which he might give to the Gentiles. Down in verse 8 he speaks of himself as less than the least of all saints, but that he should make known the administration of the mystery. The 12 had a part in the administration of promise. They are to sit with Christ in the millennium and judge the nations of the earth and evangelize them. The Church of the mystery has no such mission. The 12 have their names written in the foundations of the New Jerusalem which is to be here on the earth. There were things that the 12 could not bear to hear at that time, but which had reference to further truth in the administration of promise. There was a perfection to be attained in that administration as well as in the other. They were to be given all the truth that they would need to proclaim the coming of the King and His kingdom during the period of the Acts.

2. Some claim that the term Israel refers to the 10 tribes and that Jew refers to Judah (with Benjamin and Levi). Is this true?

The Word of God makes no such distinctions. This is another example of men bending the truth to fit the lie. The 10 tribes were in Persia at the time of Esther, yet in that book they are called Jews 6 times. Our Lord came to the lost sheep of the house of Israel, according to His own words. But some would have you believe that the 10 tribes were in Ireland at that time. Did the Lord go to Ireland seeking them? Paul said he was a Jew (Acts 22:3) yet he was of the tribe of Benjamin. Our Lord Himself was a Jew (John 4:9) while Nathaniel called Him the King of Israel (John 1:49). If you use the concordance, you will find many more examples.

3. I still have a little difficulty about the deity of Christ. Where does He come out and say that He was God?

May I ask, Where did the Lord ever come out and say that He was the Messiah of Israel? The signs and the testimony were sufficient and those who could read the OT and see the signs had all the testimony they needed. It is the same with the deity of Christ. Every attribute of God is also attributed to Him. So where is the difficulty? There is no lack of proof, but there is a great lack of belief. That was also Israel's trouble. As for Scripture references look at John 1:18, John 5:18-27, John 8:23-24, John 10:30-38, John 20:28, Eph 3:9 and there are many others.

4. If people do not really die, then why did the Lord say, Because I live, ye shall live also (John 14:19)?

It was not God that said, Ye shall not surely die, but Satan (Gen 3:4). All in Adam do die. Man's only hope for survival is in resurrection. All in Christ will be made alive. He is the first fruits of them that slept. No hope is given for those outside of Christ.

5. Does the Holy Spirit indwell the believer of this age, those in the administration of the mystery? If so, why?

Yes. The Spirit Himself beareth witness with our spirit (new nature within), that we are the children of God. Although found in Romans 8:16 this statement is undispensational, truth for all time. Verse 9 tells us that if we do not have the spirit, the new nature, we are none of His. And verse 11 tells us that there is a quickening here and now in our bodies, in our lives, that comes from this indwelling spirit. So it is this indwelling Spirit that seals the believer (Eph 1:13) and it is this indwelling Spirit that can be grieved (Eph 4:30). It is by this indwelling Spirit that God can make The Church, the temple, which is the body of Christ, His habitation (Eph 2:22). The vain and foolish philosophies of the Gnostics of course would have no place for this doctrine.

6. What is this mystery in Romans 16:25 which had been hid since the ages began?

This is not the mystery that had been hid in God from ages and generations which you will find in Colossians and Ephesians. The context of this verse reveals that it is the mystery of Christ which Paul is preaching to the Romans. The mystery of Christ began with the creation in Gen 1:1 of which we find later He is the Creator. Eph 3:3-5 tells of the mystery of Christ. It was known to the sons of men in past ages. But not as fully as when Paul finishes the Word of God, the canon of Scripture, showing Christ to be Head of The Church which is His body. Romans 16:26 tells that this mystery of Christ is manifested by the Scriptures of the prophets. Now the prophets of Eph 4:11 had not written Scriptures at this time of writing. A part of the mystery of Christ is well set forth in Isaiah 53. In fact all the Scriptures speak of Him and further reveal the mystery concerning Him. And in Romans, Christ is brought out as a federal head in contrast to Adam, showing that by Adam came sin and death, but the hope of resurrection by Jesus Christ. So Romans 16:25 tells nothing about the great secret or mystery which had been hid from ages and generations in God that the Salvation of God is now sent to the Gentiles.

7. What is the gospel of the grace of God in Acts 20:24?

It is the gospel of the uncircumcision that we find mentioned in Acts 15 and also in Gal 2:7. It is the good news that the Gentiles could become a part of the congregation of Israel and partake of their blessings (Romans 15:27) without being under the law. So in that early church the Jew walked by law, the Gentile by grace.

8. What gospel must one preach today lest he be accursed (Gal 1:9)?

No one can be accursed today for preaching any so-called gospel. For one to be accursed, he had to be subject to the law. Israel and the law are set aside today and so no one has been accursed for about 1900 years. Where there is no law, no sin can be imputed. We are under grace today.

9. Why at the end of the prophecy of Jonah does it speak of over 120,000 children and then mention much cattle? What can be the connection?

God definitely said by the mouth of Jonah that He was going to destroy Nineveh in 40 days. There were no conditions or if's about it. But the people, including the king, believed God and they repented. So God in mercy and kindness did not do what He said He was going to do. No one can find fault with a judge that will excuse one at the bar thru mercy. We have 2 other instances of like doing by the Almighty. Adam did not die the day he ate of the fruit, and God did not destroy Israel and make a nation from Moses and his family as He said He would. The sentence was lifted in mercy each time. But there is something there to connect the children and the cattle. In Ecc 3:19,20 we see that in dying there is no difference between man and beast, and they go to the same place. But we also find in Deut 8:3 that even though man was barred from the tree of life, he can live by faith, by believing what God has said. These children were not yet old enough to believe unto life, so like the cattle they would have no resurrection.

10. What does repentance have to do with salvation? What is it?

According to the usage of the word, it means a change of mind, and that for the better. We cannot read any more than that into the word. It does not occur in John's gospel which is the great salvation book for the human race today. But it is obvious that if a man believes, he has changed his mind from unbelief. However, the word repentance is used much more in the case of those who belong to God and rarely of those who do not believe. It was Israel that was called to repent for the kingdom of heaven was at hand. Today this word has lost much of its original meaning and most folks think it means penance. But the word penance cannot be found anywhere in the Bible. It is not there.

11. Did Paul write any epistles while in the prison at Caesarea?

There is no evidence that he did. And there is strong evidence that he did not. When Paul's testimony was not received at Jerusalem, the Lord said to him, Depart; for I will send thee far hence unto the Gentiles. This cannot be said of Caesarea, for it was not far from Jerusalem. Paul's ministry was in Asia, Europe, and ended at Rome.

12. Can it be true„that God will raise up the unbelievers in their original bodies, punish them, and then destroy them?

Resurrection or raising up these people would be an act of creation. Does God create sin or sinners? Would that be according to His attributes? Furthermore why should He punish them? They were slaves of sin and could not help themselves. Also 2Cor 5:19 tells us that Christ died for their sins and no trespasses are imputed. So there is no reason for punishment. The question is just this; What part would this play in redemption?

13. It says in 2Cor 5:18 that all things are of God. Does this include sin and death and also Satan himself?

In the verse before, it says that old things have passed away for the believer and that all things have become new. So all things that are of God are these new things. Never neglect the context. If all things were unlimited, as some suggest, then we can go back to Ecc 1:2 and prove that all things are vanity. But in that case it is the human labors referred to in verses 3-8 that are vanity. Always look for the antecedent.

14. What does the Bible say about birth control?

Nothing, absolutely nothing. There are some things written in 1Cor 7 which seem to pertain to the subject, but it is in view of the coming tribulation and is in keeping with what is revealed in Matt 24:19. After Acts 28:28 Paul advised the younger widows to marry and no longer spoke of the coming distress which was postponed.

15. How did the tradition get started that the church began at Pentecost?

Rome said so. There is no other evidence either historical or Biblical.

16. Some say that Paul never proclaimed the kingdom of God, but preached only the mystery. What is the evidence?

Paul was told first of all by the risen Lord to preach the things which he had seen (Acts 26:16). What he had seen was what the 12 and others were doing. So if Paul preached only the mystery, then we will have to say the same of the 12 and also of Stephen whom Paul heard. In Acts 17:7 the men of Thessalonica heard Paul preach and reported that he preached another King instead of Caesar. Evidently Paul was preaching the kingdom, the same as the 12, up to Acts 28:28.

17. Did not Paul begin a new ministry when he turned to the Gentiles in Acts 13:46? Was not this the beginning of the church?

If you read the next verse you will find that Paul quotes from Isaiah 49:6 for his authority to turn to the Gentiles. Then this was no mystery or secret hid from ages and generations.

18. What was the purpose of the ministry of Peter in the house of Cornelius?

We must note some things that are not true in order to appreciate that which is true. Nothing is said about Cornelius attending temple or synagogue. All we know is that he was a centurion at the head of an Italian band of soldiers and that he was devout, feared God, gave alms to poor Jews, and prayed to God always. This sums up all we know about him. Even after his experience at the preaching of Peter there is nothing said about him, whether he went to the temple or synagogue or whether he ever joined with the band of Christians at Jerusalem or elsewhere. With that out of the way, we can see that this was a preparation for Paul and his ministry to Gentiles during the Acts period of time.

19. How shall I choose a church or place of worship to attend?

In John 4 you will find that this was also the question of the Samaritan woman. And what was the answer? But the hour cometh, and now is, when the true worshipers shall worship the Father in spirit and in truth; for the Father seeketh such to worship Him. So today worship has no place designated, but the quality is stressed. It is to be a true spiritual worship. What better place to start it than in the home?

20. You have said that John was preaching to Israel only. What proof do you have for saying that?

Acts 13:24.

21. What would be the condition of our country if there had been no churches? Have they not been a great force in keeping our civilization?

We have a great many people today who have gotten all mixed up and they equate civilization and salvation. There are many ministers today dedicated to the task of saving our society at any cost. We have the do-gooders who want to improve the world and the old nature of man so that he will finally reach the peak of evolution and become as God and be fit for heaven. It is true that the churches have improved and preserved a moral tone of our civilization. But that does not save men. Billy Sunday once said, "There is no difference between the up-and-out and the down-and-out. They are all out." That is right. So we cannot say how many would have been saved today without the churches. Many are being saved in spite of them. We do not know how much of the message of salvation would have been preserved in the families of our country if there had been no churches. We just cannot answer your question, for there is no way of knowing. Conditions might have been better or they might have been worse as far as true worship is concerned. Speculation is useless.

22. What are the basic differences between the kingdom and the church?

The kingdom is a part of the promise made to Abraham and pertains primarily to Israel; but The Church is made up of nations without any distinctions. The kingdom will have a King; The Church has a Head. The kingdom is to be here on the earth where David's kingdom was with Jerusalem as the great world center; The Church has its place in the heavenlies. The kingdom has laws; The Church walks by grace. In the kingdom there is a promise of a bride; but The Church is the body of Christ of which He is the Head. But there is one great common truth; all are saved by grace.

23. Is it true that the nation Israel must repent before the Lord can set up His kingdom?

From the human standpoint, Yes. For prophecy tells us that they will mourn and that they will say blessed is he that cometh in the name of the Lord. From God's standpoint, the day cannot be hastened. He will come in the fullness of time.

24. It is said in Rev 1:7 that when the Lord comes every eye shall see Him. Does this mean that all people of all ages will be there to see?

This is a figure of speech, synedoche, where a part is used for the person. Only those who have eyes and can see with them when He comes will see Him. Dead folks cannot see. And some living folks may be blind. They will not see either. We have a similar figure in Ph’p 2:10 where at the name of Jesus every knee shall bow, and every tongue confess that He is Lord. This points to a time farther on than that in Revelation. But it will all be voluntary and only the living and the resurrected will do it. No one will be forced to bow. There are many other Scriptures in which this figure can be found.

25. Is not Christ reigning as King now in the heavens and will not this rule continue? How come some say that he is coming down to earth again to Jerusalem and rule over the nations here?

At the present time Satan and his angels are in the heavens. They will be cast out in the midst of the last week of the 70 weeks determined on Israel (Dan 9:24). This is described in Rev 12:9. So it is patent that Christ is not supreme ruler in the heavens now, but rather that He is hid (Col 3:3), and that whenever Christ is manifested in the heavens the members of His church (not the bride) will be manifested with Him (Col 3:4): That is the hope of The Church of the administration of the mystery. But Christ will come and reign on the earth on the throne of His father, David. In Acts 1:6 the apostles wanted to know if the kingdom was going to be set up at that time. Now since the kingdom is primarily of Israel and they are to be a blessing to the nations of the earth, how will the Lord and Israel reign over the earth as pictured in Psalms 2 if they are in heaven? It is wise to take what the Word says instead of trying to force some private interpretation upon it, or change it.

26. Was the prophecy of Joel fulfilled at Pentecost and the kingdom established there and then?

No, the prophecy has not been fulfilled yet. At Pentecost the Spirit was not poured out upon all flesh in Mt. Zion and Jerusalem. There were many Roman soldiers that did not even know about it. There were no wonders in heaven and signs in the earth at that time. There was no change in the sun and the moon. True, Peter spoke of it as the last days when these things should happen, but many years later John says that he is in the last days (1 John 2:18), and Peter many years later speaks of the last days as still future (2 Peter 3:3). At Pentecost Peter mentions the prophecy of Joel merely to show that what was working in the apostles was the same Spirit as Joel spoke about. Peter did not say that Joel's prophecy was being fulfilled. The Lord's house was not established (Isaiah 2) but was totally destroyed shortly later. David's throne has not been occupied by Christ yet. No kingdom was set up and the apostles set on thrones.

27. What is a mortal sin?

It is a sin unto death (1John 5:16). Under the law, murder was a sin unto death. In the case of Ananias and Sapphira lying unto the Holy Spirit was a sin unto death. In 1Cor 11:30 Paul speaks of some who sin and are sickly, and some even died. That was a sin unto death. Mortal sin was never spoken of a Gentile. It was to those under the law. Today the law is not in effect, so we see no examples as above among Christians.

28. Should a Christian go to war?

When Jews who had hired out as soldiers came to John at the Jordan, he baptized them, but never told them to quit the army. Our Lord healed the son of a centurion, but never told this man to quit warfare. Peter was in the house of Cornelius, but there is no record that he told Cornelius to leave the army. No Scripture can be quoted for either side, except that we are to be subject to the powers that be. One who is in the will of the Lord and trusts Him, will have no difficulty with the question. The Lord will put him where he wants him, whether it be on the battle front or in some peaceful occupation. Such questions as this are from the fearful and unbelieving.

29. Can Satan leave hell and wander on the earth at will?

There is no Scripture that says or even hints that Satan was ever in hell or ever will be. At the present time he is just where he has always been from the time of his creation. Some day he will be cast down from that position in heaven to the earth with no power to ascend to heaven again. Hell is for those who are made of the dust of the earth. Satan is not such a creature.

30. What about men taking upon themselves the title of Reverend?

This word occurs in Scripture just once, Psalms 111:9. It is used of the name of God. It is blasphemous for man to take to himself that which pertains to God and His holy name.

31. Did our Lord wear long hair when here on the earth among men?

No. Unless a man were a Nazarite, it was a shame for him to have long hair (1Cor 11:14). Our Lord was not a Nazarite, for a Nazarite was not permitted to drink wine, and our Lord did.

32. Can a Christian become wealthy?

There is no reason why he cannot. Of course those who take the story or parable of the rich man and Lazarus as literal, make it mandatory that one has to get rid of all personal property and beg if he is to be saved. But there is no premium on poverty in God's Word. Abraham was wealthy and was a friend of God. David was wealthy and he was a man after God's own heart. Isaac and Jacob both were wealthy. Solomon had much wealth. And Joseph who buried the Lord was reputed to be the wealthiest Jew of the time. Wealth can be a curse, and it can be a blessing. But poverty can make a man steal. We have wealthy men today who have contributed much to the spread of the gospel.

33. I hear that you teach that there are two churches instead of one. Is this true?

Why not read what we write and see for yourself? From time to time we have written about the 7 churches in Asia. We have recognized that there was a church in the wilderness (Acts 7:38). We have taken note of the fact that the Lord was going to build His church on a rock (Matt 16:18). And besides these were the churches at Rome, Corinth, and many other places to which Paul addressed letters. But it is noteworthy that after Acts 28:28 the word church is never in the plural and it is The Church, not A church. And every church is a body. So today there is one body (Eph 4:4), One Church.

34. According to 1Cor 16:1 should there be a collection taken up in the meeting each Sunday?

There is one collection only in this passage. It is for the saints at Jerusalem. These saints were believing Jews. This one collection was to be taken up on the first of the weeks. The word day is not in the Greek. This is the first week after the Passover. Paul would then take up this collection and carry it with him to Jerusalem.

35. What is this resurrection in Php 3:11?

The out resurrection from among the dead is the prize of the high calling and is for those who have remained faithful and suffered like unto the suffering of Jesus Christ. Paul is saying he is not sure if he will attain to it so as to show it is a prize for believers that suffer and remain faithful to the end and to contrast it with other hopes and resurrections taught by the apostle. In Hebrews 11 he does speak of some who attained to a better resurrection. But they were of a different administration. It is not the resurrection that is the result of believing and obtaining everlasting life. For that is by faith, and not by attainment. By 2 Timothy Paul is confident of attaining the prize and also knows his life shall soon end by the hands of his captors.

36. I have heard, life defined as union with Christ and death as separation from Christ. Does this fit the Scriptures?

Try it for yourself. Read Romans 6:1-10 and use these definitions for life and death. Does this fit?

37. I notice that in the records of the baptism of our Lord in Jordan, that it says that He came up out of the water. Does this mean that He was immersed in the water?

Not necessarily. A river flows, as a usual thing in a bed, for water seeks the lowest level possible. So to get into the river it was necessary to go down into the water and to get out, meant going up out of the water.

38. Who are the other sheep of John 10:16?

The word other is allos which means others of the same kind. Since Israel are the sheep and these are of the same kind, they cannot be Gentiles. That fold ceased to exist at Acts 28:28. There is no fold now. But God will deal with Israel again some day and then there will be another fold and other sheep, not the same ones of this fold in John 10. The present era is between the folds. For, other references to these sheep, see Matt 22:9,10 and 24:31. Are not these all the same?

39. How is it that you teach Pauline doctrine, but do not advocate the Lord's table (1Cor 10 & 1l)?

We do not teach Pauline doctrine for the simple reason that there is no such thing. Paul preached 4 separate gospels during his ministry. In 1Cor 10 and 11 Paul is writing to Jewish believers whose fathers had crossed the Red Sea (10:1). And the feast he is talking about is the Passover which was observed in the homes, not in public. This feast was a supper, observed in the evening, never at morning or noon. These 2 chapters cannot be used for a proof text in support of the observance of the heathen Baal's supper which had been taken up by Christendom.

40. I wonder why that Satan is usually pictured as a black man with horns, hooves, and a tail, when it says in 2Cor 11:14 that he is transformed into an angel of light. What did he look like when he appeared in the garden to Eve?

The popular conception of Satan is really a picture of Nimrod, the great rebel of Babylon. It is told in the legends that he killed a wild bull of extraordinary strength and fierceness. He is supposed to have taken the horns of the bull and made himself a headdress. It did not take the artists long to add the hooves and the tail (always pointed as a spear) and you have the concept of Nimrod the great hunter of his fellow men. We are told in Ezekiel 28 that Satan was created as a covering cherub and when he appeared to Eve it was as the Nachash (shining one). So to Eve he did appear as a great and shining angel, one to revere and believe. No snake deceived Eve.

41. Why do you persist in using the King James version when there are so many modern ones that are more easily understood and which do not use obsolete words?

There are a number of reasons for retaining the Authorized Version. Many concordances would be useless, there would be difficulty with lexicons and the like for they are mostly founded on the AV. It is a sample of the best English of the past centuries. And no modern version can express the holiness and majesty of God as it does. It presents no difficulties to those who have been brought up in Christian homes where the Bible was read and prayers made. Neither does it present any difficulties to one who knows God. But the Bible will remain a closed book to the ungodly no difference what version it may be in. We are very suspicious of versions, for all too often they reflect some man's private belief which may be partial unbelief. None yet has surpassed the Authorized Version which also has the benefit of putting many words in italics where there were no corresponding Greek or Hebrew word in the original manuscripts. It is also one of the earliest English translations and although not perfect does contain less license to private doctrines and added words.

42. Who should keep the Passover?

All circumcised Israelites. It was to be eaten in the home. There was to be no leaven in the house. No manner of work was to be done on the day it was observed. Do not forget that this is all about the kingdom and not The Church. The children of the household were to ask why it was observed and the master of the house recited the story of the exodus from Egypt. The law never made any provisions for any uncircumcised to observe it. See Ex 12:47-49. It was in force till the end of Acts, where The Church began.

43. Should I put something into the collection plate when 1 go to a church?

Most certainly, yes, unless you are the type of person that would slip under the side of the circus tent to avoid paying admission. If you go for the show, then pay your share. Jonah paid his fare, even when running from the Lord (Jonah 1:3).

44. What is the meaning of Gal 2:20? How can one be dead and yet alive?

Christ is our life, we have no eternal life of ourselves. Christ is our supply. Holding Him we have nourishment ministered. This is the fact concerning ourselves as His own, a fact we are required to acknowledge against the background of our own death. He has accomplished for us our death to the end that He may now abide in us. The one has first to happen before the other can be. This is the meaning of the words: I have been crucified with Christ; yet I live; and yet no longer I, but Christ liveth in me (Gal 2:20). But for an acknowledgment that we, as to our human life, are mortal we can never believe that we are accounted to have died with Christ. Those of our fellow-brethren who hold that the soul of man is immortal may use the term that they died with Christ - but they cannot in actuality believe that they did die. They cannot envisage the truth that, as to their human life, they are accounted to have ceased to be.

45. Paul expected to be among the living at the rapture (1Thes 4:15-17; 1Cor 15:51,52). Is this rapture still Paul's hope, even though he died and will be among the dead believers of that time?

The rapture is only for the children of promise, primarily Jews but also Gentiles who became the children of Abraham by faith from Acts 10 to Acts 28:28. It has to do with the kingdom here on the earth. The rapture is just a little trip up into the air (not heaven) to meet the Lord as He comes with clouds of angels who will execute judgment as He sets up His kingdom seated on the throne of David in Jerusalem. Since the husbandman is to be the first partaker of the fruits, then Paul must surely have a part in the administration of the mystery which was entrusted to him to proclaim. Therefore he will have an earlier resurrection than that at the coming of the Lord and will be manifested with Him in the heavenly places.

46. Matthew 8:11 seems to indicate that Gentiles from the East and the West will have a part in the kingdom, but not from the North and the South. Is there any explanation for this?

There is no explanation that we can give at this time except the suggestion that it may be that the Russians and the Egyptians will not have a part in it. That could also include Lebanon and Syria. But this is only a guess. These nations might be all changed around by that time. But it is something to think about. The Word is exact and there is good reason for these words being written. The prophecies will be plain to all when fulfilled.

47. If the 70 weeks of Daniel 9 begins at the dedication of the temple, 1 always thought it had its beginning with the decree of Artaxerxes or Astyages in 454 B.C. Can you explain your position?

Very briefly, you will find 2 distinct prophecies in Daniel chapter 9. The first one is in verse 24 and speaks of the second advent of the Messiah. Note that 70 weeks are determined upon the people and the city. This cannot begin with the decree for the simple reason that the people are not in the city till about 49 years (7 weeks) later. So the 70 weeks determined on the city and the people must begin about the time of the dedication of the temple or 405 B.C. It is not hard then to figure that the coming of the Messiah to set up His kingdom would have been AD. 85. However the course of the city and the people did not run to this end, but the people were set aside at Acts 28:28 and since then have not been a people. The city was destroyed in 70 AD. Now if the people were cut off at the end of Acts, about A.D. 63, then there are about 3 weeks yet to run till the coming of the Messiah. We do not know when this prophecy will be resumed. Now the 7 and 62 weeks after the going forth of the decree brings us to A.D. 29, the date when Messiah was cut off. That has been completed.

48. Does Genesis 6:3 indicate that God will not always strive with men,. but that one can cross a deadline where there will be no more conviction by the Holy Spirit and they are forever lost?

Man, in this verse is Adam in the Hebrew: The verse means that God is getting weary of striving with Adam, for Adam (like others) is erring. See note in Companion Bible. So Adam is given another 120 years to live and he died at the age of 930. So we can take it that Adam was 810 years old when God finally made up His mind not to put up with him.

49. Is there any escape from hell once one is in it? If so, how?

The common notion of hell is far from what the Word says that it is. It is sheol in the Hebrew and occurs 65 times in the OT. It is translated hell 31 times, grave 31 times and pit 3 times. The RV is consistent in that it renders it sheol each time. It could be translated grave all 65 times and not mar the meaning. In the NT hades is used 11 times. It is also used in the LXX to translate sheol. So it is the same thing. It is translated 10 times as hell and once as grave. Gehenna does not enter into this discussion, for although it is translated hell, it is the city dump outside of Jerusalem. Neither does Tartarus enter in either. The grave or hell is a place where people are dead and live not again till resurrection (Rev 20:5). Our Lord was in hell 3 days and 3 nites. He came out by resurrection and was the first fruits of the great harvest that is still to come forth. Death and hell are to be destroyed (Rev 20:13,14). So all go to hell or the grave at death. Those who have everlasting life will escape by resurrection.

50. What is the difference between the gospel of the kingdom and the gospel of the grace of God?

The former includes the latter in one sense. The gospel or good news of the kingdom was first proclaimed by John the Baptist, the Lord Himself, then the 12, and finally the 70, this being before the death of Christ. Then the apostles were further instructed as to the kingdom and this was the gospel preached by all up to Acts 28:28. The gospel of the grace of God began in the house of Cornelius, about 9 years after Pentecost. This was the only instance that Peter preached this gospel. None of the other 11 preached it at any time. And about 17 years after Pentecost Paul began to preach the gospel of the grace of God at Antioch to the Gentiles (just as Peter did) and continued it till the end of Acts. But in every instance Paul was careful to preach the gospel of the kingdom to the Jew first, and then turned to the Gentiles and preached to them the gospel of the grace of God, which meant that they could partake of all the spiritual blessings of Israel without keeping the law (being circumcised, keeping feasts, and the rituals). The same salvation (not eternal life) of the kingdom was at that time for both Jew and Gentile, but to the Jew first.

51. What is the preaching of Jesus Christ according to the revelation of the mystery (Romans 16:25)?

In this context we learn that the mystery that is in view is one that had been hushed since the ages began. So it is not the administration of the mystery which was hid from ages and generations and had its plans made before the ages began. This mystery, that had been hushed had been made known by the prophets as the context tells us, so it is not the mystery of Ephesians and Colossians. Also this mystery in Romans is made known to all nations for the obedience of faith. In the structure outline of Romans this is explained by the same words appearing in 1:1-5. It is the preaching of Jesus Christ as the Son of God, but connected with His being the seed of David. So then this is kingdom preaching and declares Jesus Christ not only the anointed one or Messiah, but truly the Son of God.

52. In what sense, if any, did works ever save?

Basically we have all through the Bible record the revelation of life as the gift of God, received by faith and in no connection whatsoever with works. But on that life we find based at least two salvations or lines of blessing. One is the promise made to Abraham. At least the kingdom aspect of the administration of promise has much to do with works as the sermon on the mount will indicate. Also Mark 16:16 adds that when the kingdom was being preached to Jews only, they must believe and be baptized in order to be saved. From 1Cor 3 we may infer that good works of themselves did not save, but could be burned up and the worker saved as by fire. When works were connected with salvation, they were for the most part specific rather than general. But today we have a salvation revealed in Eph 2:8-10 which is obtained by faith only. This salvation is a creation unto good works, not of works.

53. I am puzzled by Mark 13:32. Does this take away from the truth of the deity of Christ?

This passage says, But of that day and hour knoweth no man, no, not the angels which are in heaven, neither the Son, but the Father. This has been a favorite verse for those who deny the deity of Christ. But it may be that it does prove His deity. He knows that no man knows the day and the hour. He knows that the angels in heaven do not know the day and the hour. Does not this knowledge indicate deity? And what if He does not choose to know? Deity can forget or remember at will. He can forget our sins. That we cannot do. If the Lord chose not to know the time, then that was His business and we have no right to question Him.

54. Is glory a place?

If at any time it answers the question, Where?, then it is a place. Whenever the question of place comes up with any terms, this is a good question to ask. If it designates where something is to be or to happen, then it is a place. But you will note when you look up the word glory in the concordance that it is not always used the same. It may speak of the glory of God. It may speak of the glory of Christ. And there are other usages. In the mystery of godliness in 1Timothy 3:16 it says that He was received up into glory. This answers the question of Where?, and is definitely a place. You may try other passages with the same method.

55. What is dispensational truth?

It is the body of truth, doctrine and practice, that is for a particular household of God. Some dispensational truth may be common to both dispensations. Some truth may be peculiar to its own particular dispensation. For instance, citizenship in the heavenly places is peculiar to the dispensation of the mystery. On the other hand, a part in the new Jerusalem is peculiar to the dispensation of promise. The word chosen is common to both, but time of choosing makes the distinction. The choice of some is before the overthrow, and the choice of others since the overthrow. This is where the workmanship of right division comes in.

56. What is meant by falling from grace?

You probably refer to Gal 5:4. In the first place this epistle to the Galatians is written to the members of the administration of promise, and especially to the Gentile members who had been grafted into the blessings of Israel and the kingdom. To these Paul had preached the gospel of the grace of God, that they might receive all the benefits of the administration of the promise without being circumcised and keeping the law. But there were Judaizers who were convincing some of these Gentiles that they must be circumcised and keep the law. So Paul says to them, For I testify again to every man (Gentile) that is circumcised, that he is a debtor to do the whole law. Christ is become of no effect unto you, whosoever of you (Gentiles) are justified by the law; ye are fallen from grace. So to fall from grace was to leave the grace principle or gospel and go back to circumcision.

57. Was the crossing of the Red Sea literal, or was it just a figurative story?

If it was just a story, then we fail to see the point. If it was just a story, then how did the few million Hebrew slaves get out of Egypt?

58. What does it mean to be baptized with the Holy Ghost? Acts 1:4,5.

At Pentecost the apostles were baptized with the Holy Ghost in fulfillment of the promise in Luke 24: 49. They received power from on high. This power enabled them to speak in languages and perform many miracles. This was in connection with those who proclaimed the kingdom. It was not in any way connected with The Church. See The Giver and His Gifts by E. W. Bullinger for further light.

59. Can Gentiles partake of the New Covenant?

Jer 31:31 plainly states that the New Covenant is to be made with the house of Israel and the house of Judah. This is again quoted in Heb 8:8. This is with Israel, not The Church or the Gentiles. The Gentiles do have a promise (Eph 3:6; 2Tim 1:1; Tit 1:2). But Gentiles have always been strangers from the covenants of promise (Eph 2:12).

60. In Acts 20:27 Paul declares that he has shown the whole counsel of God, yet we are led to believe that the mystery which was later proclaimed had been hid from ages and generations and that Paul did not know it there in Acts 20. How can we reconcile these?

If you will look at Eph 1:9 and 11 you will see two words used which do not mean the same thing. One is counsel, and the other is purpose. Paul did not say that he had proclaimed the whole purpose of God, but God's counsel (in accordance with the purpose then revealed). But when a new purpose or further purpose was made known, then there was a counsel or working out of that purpose as you see in Ephesians one. Be careful with terms.

61. What are the gates of hell in Matthew 16:18?

Since no explanation is given in that place, we must then go back to the OT which the disciples at that time had. In Isaiah 38:10 we read, I shall go to the gates of the grave. Have the gates of death been opened unto thee? or hast thou seen the doors of the shadow of death? (Job 38:17). Thou that liftest me up from the gates of death (Psalms 9:13). Can this be resurrection from the grave? And we read in Psalms 107: 18, And they draw near unto the gates of death. Now going back to the passage in Matthew, we must conclude that the doors of the grave or hell cannot hold His church when He calls. They will come forth from the state of death.

62. If being born again in John 3:3 means resurrection, then what does it mean in 1Peter 1:23?

The same word is not used in these two passages. The latter means begotten (See margin in Companion Bible). So we must conclude that there can be no rebirth or resurrection without a begetting by the Word of God. Try using begotten in John 3:6 and see what the meaning is. Further study is needed in this subject.

63. Is it true that "ALL Paul's early epistles are addressed to Gentiles." References, such as Romans 11:13; 1Cor 12:2; Gal 4:8; and 1Thess 2:14, are given to prove the point. Can you give more light on this?

There is little doubt that Paul's first epistle was Galatians. And it appears that it was written to the Gentile Christians of Galatia. But at the same time it is evident that he wrote Hebrews, and that epistle is not to Gentiles at all! Romans 2 is to the Jewish believers, verse 17 emphasizing it. Chapters 10 and 11 of 1Cor are to those whose fathers crossed the Red Sea. Surely they must have been Jews. The fathers of the Gentiles never crossed the Red Sea. You will note in these chapters the directions for keeping the feast (the Passover) which was never lawful for Gentiles to keep.

64. Must the Roman empire be revived?

For many years we have heard this debated, but really have never yet found a Scripture which would indicate that this must be true. We are open to any proof anyone may offer for this, but we are afraid it is merely a tradition someone started.

65. How can every knee bow confessing Christ Lord, to God's glory, unless reconciled? (Philippians 2: 10,11).

Lest any be misled, we must emphasize the fact that reconciliation is not life nor is it salvation. The definition is given in 2Cor 5:19. It means that a work was accomplished so that the sins of the world are not imputed against it. This is good news for those who do not have life, for it gives them access to God to receive the precious gift of everlasting life. Those that have this life shall live. And in resurrection, they will be given knees which they can bow, and be given tongues with which they can confess. But those who do not have life and will never see life (John 3:36), but remain in the dust of the earth, will never have knees or tongues.

66. What does it mean in Philippians 2:12 where it says we are to work out our salvation with fear and trembling?

It is well to consider what salvation is before making any applications. It does not say that we are to work out our everlasting life. To equate salvation and everlasting life will only get us into confusion. And somebody has said that confusion is ignorance. When our Lord said to the woman of Samaria that salvation was of the Jews, He was not talking about everlasting life. By faith the Samaritans or any other people could have life. Peter recognized this fact in Acts 10:43. Israel had a salvation to work out. It was that they were to be a priestly nation and make known to the nations the name of Jehovah. They were promised the blessings of the kingdom. To them pertained the preaching of the kingdom. All this was their salvation and they were expected to work it out. And so when the salvation of God was sent to the Gentiles in Acts 28:28, it does not mean that they are then to obtain everlasting life. Their salvation was the administration of the mystery with all its hopes and blessings. This they were to work out.

67. What is the meaning of 1Timothy 1:8?

This verse states that the law is good if one uses it lawfully. There is law today, but not in the sense of the Mosaic law given at Sinai, although that law did reveal the righteousness of God and man's utter inability to attain unto such a state of holiness. But the law or will of God is given to us in the last seven epistles of Paul in the form of exhortations and the like. This is a good thing for us providing we do not attempt to use it as a means of boasting in the flesh. We can walk worthy of our vocation or calling, but there is nothing to brag about, for such a walk is where Christ lives in and acts thru us.

68. What is the difference between eternal life and everlasting life?

They both translate the same phrase in the Greek. However God alone can have eternal life for He has no beginning or end. His children do have a beginning and are given everlasting life through the works of His Son.

69. Your teaching seems very queer. How can Christ be King of kings on the earth and at the same time be Head of a church which is His body in heaven? This is absurd, is it not?

For finite beings such as you and I, this would be impossible and therefore absurd. But if Christ were deity, God manifest in flesh, then He is the Infinite and could appear in as many different places and forms as He might choose.

70. Was Christ a soul after the resurrection?

Psalms 16:10 says, Thou wilt not leave My soul in hell; neither wilt Thou suffer Thine Holy One to see corruption. This is quoted in Acts 2:27 by Peter, and part of it is quoted in Acts 13:35 by Paul. Christ went to hell just as have all others who have lived and died on this earth. But His soul was holy and so did not see corruption. It was raised from the dead. If He was a soul before death, then He was a soul in resurrection.

71. I have heard it said that God is acting in grace today to all the world, and that if He does not act in grace, He does not act at all. Is this according to the Scriptures?

In theory, this is but another version of universal reconciliation or salvation. It just happens that the Redeemer in the Hebrew is also the Avenger. The redemption of Noah and his family brought vengeance on the wicked world of that time. The redemption of Israel from Egypt brought vengeance on Pharaoh and his hosts. The very fact that God loves His people makes Him hate their enemies. We are told that Buddha loves everybody. He sits and does nothing about it. But that is not our God. His grace is for those that will partake of it. His wrath abides on others (John 3:36).

72. I am a little mixed up. It speaks of the inheritance of God in the heavenlies in Ephesians 1:18, and in Colossians 1:12 it says that we are made meet to be partakers of the inheritance in the holiest in light. However Ephesians 5:5 indicates that one may lose this inheritance. How is this?

The Church has an inheritance, even as did Israel. Individuals may lose it, even as many thousands of Israel lost their inheritance.

73. In Psalms 1:5 it says that the ungodly would not stand (arise) in the judgment, and that this meant no resurrection for the unbelievers. Somebody said that this word stand did not mean resurrection. Can you answer this?

A lot of people are quick to set forth their own ideas as gospel truth, but err, not knowing the Scriptures. You will find this word quwm (koom) on page 1101 of the Englishman's Hebrew Concordance. There is a long list of the places where used, but one or two will suffice. See Job 14:12; Psalms 88:10; Isaiah 26:14. You can also check this with Strong's concordance. The word number is 6965. This is what Scripture says.

74. Do you believe in the verbal inspiration of the Bible? If so, then how would you translate sheep and vine and the like for people who know nothing of these things? After all, is not the Bible just the words of men?

The Bible time after time claims to be the Word of God. If it is not, then it is false and should be thrown out altogether. It would even be dangerous if it were just the words of men. But look at Psalms 12: 6, The words of the Lord are pure words: as silver tried in a furnace of earth, purified seven times. God has spoken in man's language to man, but He does not use those words carelessly as man does. And the fact that some might not understand some of the terms used is no excuse to make any changes in the Word of God. How many understand love? How many comprehend the term righteousness? We who are teachers have to teach what these things are. And so it is up to a man to teach what a sheep or a vine is when speaking to the Eskimos. Some tribes do not know what a home is. It is up to Christians to teach and to show these what a home is. We must not tamper with the Scriptures. But we must remember that All Scripture is given by inspiration of God and is profitable...

75. What is the sin mentioned in Hebrews 12:1?

It is the sin of unbelief. That is the root of all other sins. Self-will nourishes it.

76. It seems strange that Rahab the harlot should be so well spoken of in the Bible. Why?

In this day when men think that respectability is Christianity, this does pose a real question. But Rahab was saved by faith and not by any moral qualities she may have had. So we can say that she was a sinner saved by grace. People who do not know the love and power of God cannot understand His works. Our Lord was criticized because He kept company with publicans and sinners. God is able to take the worst sinner living today and make a saint of him. But men with all their do-good programs and reformation cannot do this.

77. Why don't we hear more about Jobs wife?

She was not much good as a wife. When Job was in trouble and grief, she was no comfort. All she had to say was that he should curse God and commit suicide (Job 2:9). God did not see fit even to put her name in Scripture. The same with Lot's wife.

78. Why did God have a program of healing in the apostolic times and not have it today?

During the time covered by Acts, the kingdom was still at hand. If any at that time would have been careful to study Daniel 9, they would have been able to set the date of the Lord's second coming and the setting up of His kingdom. It would have been A.D. 85, just 490 years from the dedication of the temple after the exile (405 B.C.). With that near coming at hand, it would be fitting that those who believed and entered into the kingdom would be alive and ready to meet the King at His coming. So the sick were healed and the dead raised during the time that the kingdom was in view. But when the kingdom was postponed at Acts 28:28, the gifts of the Spirit ceased. The two days of Hosea 6:2 must intervene before Israel will be raised and come into their kingdom. Resurrection and being manifested with Him in the heavenlies is the hope of the members of The Church which is His body today. A resurrection at about the time of the great white throne of judgment is the hope of those who have everlasting life, but no adoption (See Job 14:12 and compare with Rev 20:11). Thus we can see that there is no gifts of healing and the like today.

79. How about the common teaching that the church is Spiritual Israel? Is it true?

I am afraid that we will never be able to find the expression Spiritual Israel in the Bible. It is not there. History tells us that this expression originated with a man by the name of Origines. He was a Greek writer and teacher of the third century. It was a theory that God was forever thru with the Jew and now all the blessings and covenants had been transferred to the church. A few years later the Emperor Constantine saw in this a great chance to improve his position as ruler. This would make a fine basis for a church-state, making war in the name of and with the aid of religion, for ritual, pomp, splendor, and ecclesiastical theatricals. We have on hand today the tragic results of that lie, that theory, which has caused to much bloodshed and misery in centuries past. And if we are not careful, organized religion will again take over and rule the world. Then there will be great tribulation.

80. Is water baptism essential for the remission of sins?

Isaiah had a coal of fire laid upon his mouth, which in touching his lips took away all his iniquity and purged all his sins. Our Lord spoke to many during His earthly ministry, remitting their sins without baptism. The members of The Church of the administration of The Mystery are not under law, and they today have redemption through His blood, and the forgiveness of sins. They have only one baptism and this is explained in Col 2:12,13 as being identified with Christ in His death, burial and resurrection, even to a quickening with Him with the accompaniment of forgiveness of sins. No water baptism is mentioned in connection with The Church. It is a part of the law and the kingdom of Israel. But there are even now those who claim that they are Jews (Rev 2:9; 3:9)

81. It would seem that Romans 2:14 proves that man did not have a fall, but by nature does the things of the law. How do you see it?

The epistle to the Romans has suffered much at the hands of its friends, the commentators and the expositors. It is a case of being very careful to read the address on the envelope, to find out to whom the apostle is speaking. This epistle is written to the church at Rome which was made up of Jewish and Gentile believers. The man spoken to in verse 1 of chapter 2 is seen to be the Jew (see verse 17). When we read Galatians we see that the Gentile believers in the churches were not subject to the law of Israel. This is also brought out in the council at Jerusalem (Acts 15). So here in Romans 2:14 Paul is reminding the Jewish believers that the Gentile believers did by nature (the new nature in the believer) the things contained in the law. This would only be natural, for the law did contain the righteous requirements of God for His people. This does not say that the Gentiles observed the ritual of the law. That was settled in Acts 15:24-29.

82. There is a great deal of mention of the book of life in the Revelation. There seems to be a danger of being blotted out of it. How can one know his name is in this book?

This is another example of carelessly reading the Word. The book of life is mentioned about 7 times in the Revelation. Once it is called the Lamb's book of life (21:27). This might give us a clue. But the best explanation for it is given in Daniel 12:1. The names written in the book are those of Daniel's people, that is, Israel. So we do not look for the names of Gentiles to be written in that particular book. The Revelation is about Israel, their tribulation, and the overcomers. It is possible that there might be a book for the Gentiles, but you will find that elsewhere.

83. Do we today have need of the Advocate mentioned in 1John 2:1?

Under the law, men were judged by the law (Romans 2:12) and those that do not have the law cannot be judged by it. Where there is no law, sin is not imputed and therefore there can be no summons to court or a charge made against the sinner (see 2Cor 5:19 and Romans 5:13). Those under the law prayed that they might be forgiven as they forgave others. But we who are under grace are to forgive others freely because we have been forgiven (Eph 4:32). We have no need of an Advocate today, for we have forgiveness of sins (Eph 1:7 & Col 1:14).

84. What was the spiritual condition of the rich young ruler when he came to the Lord and asked what he should do to inherit eternal life?

This young man who must have been a "somewhat" in the synagogue was already a believer. He recognized the Lord as the Messiah, the King of Israel. His request was what he must do to have a place of importance in the kingdom. The reply of the Lord was very similar to His words in Matt 19:29. It meant the forsaking of everything in the world for His name's sake. The price was too high for this man.

85. Did Paul continue establishing churches or assemblies after Acts 28:28?

There is no record that he did. Neither is there any record that such churches or assemblies were in existence after Acts 28:28.

86. What part, or parts, of the gospel of John are truth for this administration?

In the first place, we do not use the term "this administration." If the administration of The Mystery is meant, then John's gospel is not to or for it. But John's gospel is truth for today. So many are misled by the expression "this administration," thinking it means this age or time in which we live and that it means a way in which God is dealing with mankind today in general. God does have a special way of dealing with the administration of The Mystery, a church already seated in heavenly places. But for the rest of humanity today, John's gospel applies (John 3:16). There is no administration teaching for today in this gospel. That which applies today and which is for Gentiles (the Jews have been set aside, 1:11), is 1:1-18; 3:13-21; and 3:31-36. The reason for the writing of the gospel is given in 20:30,31. There are some short explanations through the book for Gentile readers, and then the last 2 verses of the book are up-to-date.

87. Should those who are Christians gather together at some place for worship today?

It may be that the word worship is somewhat overdone these days. Even in Israel, the temple was the designated place of worship. The Synagogue was not a place of worship, but a place to teach the Scriptures and also as a court where men might be tried under the law and penalties meted out. Paul knew this very well, for he had been beaten in the Synagogues many times. In the epistles written after Acts 28:28 the word worship occurs just once. That is in Ph'p 3:3 where Paul says, For we are the (true) circumcision, which worship God in the spirit. This is an echo of John 4:23 where the Lord said to the woman of Samaria, But the hour cometh, and now is, when the true worshiper shall worship the Father in spirit and in truth. That worship has nothing to do with a place, a priesthood, nor a ritual. It is natural for those who love the Word and the One of whom it speaks to gather together, but we have no such command today. Leaders often wish it and even pretend it so they can get a following and a big collection.

88. Do you believe that there are 2 bodies?

In the administration of The Mystery there is 1 Body (Eph 4:4). In the administration of promise there was 1 body (1Co 12:13). Whether that included all believers I cannot tell. It may have been just the church at Corinth. So there was one body, and there is one body. But they are not the same. The first was of Israel with an earthly hope. There is one now of Gentiles already seated in heavenly places. The first was to minister to the nations of the earth. There is one now making known the manifold wisdom of God to principalities and powers in heavenly places. We are aware that most of Christendom does not know much about right division and the mystery.

89. I am curious about Acts 17:11. What was it that Paul told the Bereans, and what Scriptures might they have looked up to see if it was so?

You have done well to stop and ask such a question. Not many have done that. In the same chapter, in verses 2 and 3, you will find what Paul preached; And Paul, as his manner was, went in unto them (the synagogue of the Jews), and three Sabbath days reasoned with them out of the Scriptures, opening and alleging, that Christ must needs have suffered, and risen again from the dead; and that this Jesus-whom I preach unto you, is Christ. So it is clear that Paul was preaching and arguing from the Scriptures that Jesus of Nazareth was indeed their Christ and Messiah, the King of Israel. In verse 7 his enemies charge him with saying, that there is another king (than Caesar), one Jesus. The theme of their Scriptures, the OT, is of the coming kingdom and the King. And this is what the Bereans found. Paul was not preaching the administration of The Mystery. Even if he had, they could not have verified his message from the Scriptures they had, for it was a subject that had been hid in God from ages and generations (Eph 3:9; Col 1:26). Be sure to check this.

90. How can we know that the "voice" in Isaiah 40:3 refers to John the Baptist?

The Holy Spirit inspired Matthew to write of John the Baptist, For this is He that was spoken of by the prophet Esaias, saying, The voice of one crying in the wilderness, Prepare ye the way of the Lord, make His paths straight. This is quoted from the reference you gave. Also you will find that a messenger is to be sent to proclaim the coming of the Lord, the God of Israel (Mal 2:16,17; 3:1-4). This is the same Lord and God referred to in your text. Not only does John the Baptist fulfill the place of the messenger, but Jesus of Nazareth is the Lord and the God of Israel whose way is to be made straight. Christ is Jehovah.

91. Could it be that Philippians 2:9-11 refers to the man, Jesus, who is another creature or a god?

In this reference it is plainly stated that the highest name possible is given to Jesus of Nazareth. That name is found in Psalms 7:17, the first of 36 places it occurs in the OT. It is Jehovah-Elyon, or, Jehovah the Most High God. There is no name above this one. If Jesus of Nazareth was not Jehovah, the Most High God, then our Bible is wrong, not inspired, and can not be trusted. We might just as well throw it out and lean on our own understanding. Here is a further quotation from Isaiah 45:23, I am God, and there is none else. I have sworn by Myself, the word is gone out of My mouth in righteousness, and shall not return, That unto Me every knee shall bow, and every tongue shall swear. In this same context it is made plain that there is no other Savior. However Satan still is saying, Yea, hath God said! We find our directions made clear in 2 John 9,10, Whosoever transgresseth, and abideth not in the doctrine of Christ (what the Word testifies of Him) , hath not God ...If there come any unto you, and bring not this doctrine, receive him not into your house, neither bid him God speed. Just remember, the greatest of sins is unbelief.

92. What is the meaning of Romans 9:6 where it says, " For they are not all Israel, which are of Israel." Does this have to do with the true seed?

The true and the false seed are not in this context. Rather, the downfall of Israel and the blessing of the Gentile believers is the subject of chapters 9-11 here in Romans. Paul is making it plain that the true Israel of God is not all made up of the descendants of Israel, but also includes Gentiles. In his first epistle, Paul said to the Gentile believers, And if ye be Christ's, then are ye Abraham's seed, and heirs according to the promise (Gal 3:29). In verse 9 of the same chapter we read, So then they which be of faith are blessed with faithful Abraham. Now keep in mind that this is in the administration of promise, not The Mystery. Israel is still first.

93. Did John the Baptist have a message and a baptism for Gentiles?

There is no record that he did. In fact, there was no ministry to Gentiles in the NT until the day that Peter went to the house of Cornelius in the city of Caesarea (Acts 10 entire).

94. There is much talk these days about Moses being married to a black woman, and also that Philip preached to a colored man of Ethiopia. Do these have any bearing on truth for today?

None that I can think of. Zipporah was the wife of Moses. She was the daughter of a priest in Midian. His name was Reuel, Raguel, or Jethro. The Midianites were children of Abraham by his second wife, Keturah, and so would be the same race and color as Moses. Since Midian was in Arabia, a part of the land of Cush, she would be a Cushite by nationality, but a Midianite by race. So what? The eunuch, to whom Philip spoke, is not. said to be an Ethiopian, but from Ethiopia. He had the Scriptures and had been to Jerusalem to worship. So we must conclude that he was a Jew that was a slave in high position with the queen of Ethiopia. This would correspond with the condition of Daniel in the court of Nebuchanezzar and later in the court of Darius the Mede. I might add that the queen of Sheba was very probably not of Ethiopia, as tradition says, but queen Hatshepsut of Egypt (Sheba meaning south).

95. What is meant by the evil day in Ephesians 6:13?

There is a chance that at some time during the truth of the administration of The Mystery there may come a time of tribulation or trial upon those who dare to speak this truth. The spiritual failure and barrenness we see in Christendom today can well lead to such a condition.

96.  Are we to approach the throne of grace in prayer today as indicated in Hebrews 4:16?

The word throne does not appear in any of the epistles Paul wrote after Acts 28:28. It is not found in the gospel of John which was also written this side of Acts. Throne has to do with a King and a kingdom. There is no place for a throne in The Church. In the plural, it occurs in Col 1:16, but it is concerning thrones, dominions, and the like in heaven and earth, not the throne of God.

97. In Romans 6:14,15 it speaks of not being under the law, but under grace. Was not the Jew still under the law then?

Yes, the Jew was still under the ceremonial law, known as the law. But in the reference you gave, there is no article. Under faith, love, and grace, the Jew was no longer subject to the moral law. The moral law is contained in the last 5 of the 10 commandments. You can readily see that if one loves his neighbor as himself, then this moral law is made void. It is rather a strange thing to say that law is for the lawless. But that is right. The Gentile believers in Rome had the new nature and so did the things of the law, even though they never had it (Romans 2:14). Romans 13:8,10 shows that love is the fulfilling of the law (the moral law).

98. According to Ephesians 3:2 is not this the age or administration of grace?

No. This verse tells us that a special administration of grace was given to Paul that he might preach the gospel of the administration of The Mystery. Just notice how Paul follows this statement up in verses 7 & 8. Compare with Col 1:25 where he speaks of his ministry being an administration of God to him. The next verse speaks of this ministry as The Mystery.

99. When did water baptism cease to be the rule for God's people?

The apostles and Paul baptized with water in the Acts era. Paul makes it known that after Acts 28:28 there is one baptism (Eph 4:5) and in Col 2:12 this baptism is described as being identified with Christ in death, burial and resurrection. So we must conclude that water baptism ceased at the end of Acts.

100. Is it true that two distinct purposes of God are revealed in the Bible?

Yes that is true. (1) There is a distinctive purpose revealed concerning Israel, the kingdom, and the earth program (not connected with powers in the heavens). The kingdom phase culminates in the coming of the King, the rapture of His people, Israel, and the setting up of the kingdom. (2) There is another distinctive purpose revealed after Acts 28:28 which has to do with the Gentiles (nations) and this in connection with heavenly places and heavenly beings. This is The Church. All believers outside these two distinctive purposes from Adam till now will have their part with the dying malefactor in paradise (the new earth). This groups all believers into 3 groups, but with 2 spheres of blessing, the earth and the heavens.

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  • The Word of God makes known The Lord Jesus Christ; Who declares to the Believer our Heavenly Father that we might know Him. God has revealed Himself not according to religious viewpoints but reveals Himself by the written Word.  The Light that illuminates our path makes it possible for all who are willing to walk with Him and to see His clear instructions to live victorious lives in Christian Faith and Practice.
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