Posted by: jesusmessiah | September 10, 2010

I Have Returned

I began this blog over 2 years ago wanting to share what I’ve learned about the Bible and end times. Since the time I first began posting articles on this blog much has changed.

I have learned the distinction between Dispensationalism and Covenant Theology.
I have learned the differences between Arminianism and Calvinism.
I have studied Reformed Theology.
I have studied all views of the Millennium.
All this, along with many other particulars.

In summary, my understanding of God and His word have changed much these past two years.

As a result of all the study conducted over this time, I am now a 5-point Calvinist. I understand Covenant as the structure of how God deals with man as apposed to Dispensationalism.

I also understand Amillennialism as the correct, literal and clear biblical teaching of the eschatology.

I help my readers to understand a few other particulars I’ll just state that I am a Reformed Baptist and hold to the London Baptist Confession of 1689.

I do not believe that paedobaptism (infant baptism) is biblical and I would use Acts 2:38-41 and Hebrews 8 to help support this.

One area I’m still unsure about is the regulative principle of worship. I’m still studying this and understand and agree with it to an extent but you start getting into adiaphora and so I hold back.

Well, that’s basically it in a nutshell. I’m going to leave my older posts because they’re evidence of how I’ve grown and my be able to use them for conversation later. I may even pick them apart and explain where I was wrong in cases.

Posted by: jesusmessiah | August 22, 2008

History of the Bible

I composed this blog post from notes I had taken from a sermon preached by Craig Groeschel from Life Church. If you have not checked into Life Church yet, I STRONGLY suggest you do so. Goto www.lifechurch.tv.

God’s Word tells us in Hebrews 4:12,

“For the word of God is living and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart.” (NIV)

And in Psalm 119:16,

“I delight in your decrees; I will not neglect your word.” (NIV)

The word neglect comes from the Hebrew shakach which means to lay aside, to forget, or to take for granted.

John 1:1-2 tells us,

“In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was with God in the beginning.” (NIV)

Sometime between 1400-1500 B.C. God Himself wrote the 10 Commandments on stone in an ancient form of Hebrew. For thousands of years Scripture was recorded on animal skins that were called scrolls. They may have used deer, cows or sheep but never a pig. A pig was considered unclean and that was totally inappropriate for God’s Word. When the entire Pentatauch is found on a scroll it’s called a Torah. When you unroll and entire Torah scroll, it would be over 150 feet in distance. The scroll was so long, it would take an entire herd of sheep to make one Torah scroll.

By approximately 500 B.C., the 39 books we know as the Old Testament were completed and continue to be preserved in Hebrew on scrolls. By the end of the 1st century A.D. the New Testament was completed and preserved in Greek on papyrus, a thin paper like material made from stalks of a reed-like plant.

In 367 A.D. the Bishop of Alexandria, named Athenasius, composed his Easter letter and in it, he listed all the books you read today in the New Testament. Then in 393, the African Senate of Hippo approved all the books we find in the New Testament.

By 500 A.D., the Bible had been translated into over 500 different languages. People from all over were thankful because they could read God’s Word in their own language. But then something very unusual happened, in just the next 100 years, by the year 600 A.D., the Bible is only allowed in one language.

The Catholic Church of Rome at the time was the only recognized church in the land and they issued a decree that no Bible in any other language was allowed. If anyone found a Bible in any other language was found in other than Latin, the person holding that Bible could be executed on the spot.

The reason is because the Catholic Church became corrupt and the priests were the only ones educated in the Latin language so the common person could never read God’s Word. This gave the priests ultimate power. They could teach the parts of the Bible they wanted to. They could even throw in some things that were not in the Bible at all, and that was very common.

In fact, it was common to go and pay for indulgences in a sense that they were paying for forgiveness. If they sinned, they could go pay a certain amount of money and the priest would say that because they paid that price, they are forgiven.

The Catholic Church also taught about a place called Purgatory, a word that’s not found in Scripture. But they said if your relative dies, they go to Purgatory which is a type of holding place, a place that you really don’t want to be. But for a certain amount of money you could purchase the freedom for your relative from Purgatory. In todays world it would kind of be like this, if your grandmother dies, for $99.95 you could buy grandmother a ticket out of Purgatory.

The priests used this forced ignorance, and between the years 400-1400 A.D. they deceived the masses during a 1000 year period which was known as the Dark Ages.

Even the darkness will not be dark to you; the night will shine like the day, for darkness is as light to you. – Psalm 139:12 (NIV)

So how did the church break free of this long period of dark and horrible corruption?

Once the Bible, the truth of God’s Word got into the hands of enough people and the right people, God used His truth trough people to bring about the necessary reformation of the church.

In the year 563 A.D. there was a guy named Columba, sometimes referred to as Columba of Iona. He started a secret Bible society or a Bible school where people could faithfully teach God’s Word. This group of people became the remnant on Earth where God’s Word was taught faithfully for centuries. The students of this group were called the Culdees. The word means certain strangers. They were strangers of this world but for 700 years the Culdees would disciple one another and they faithfully studied God’s Word. In fact, it was out of this group that God raised up the right people to bring about the reformation.

In the late 1300’s, one of these by the name of John Wycliff, was a man that God used to do tremendous things. He was the first person to translate the Bible into the English language. When he did so, all of a sudden all these people who before couldn’t read Scripture were now able to do so. At this time some say it would take about 10 months to translate one Bible into this language. He was faithful in spreading God’s Word, but unfortunately he was called a heretic, and the Pope was so disgusted by this guy that 44 years after his death, the Pope ordered Wycliff’s bones to be dug up, destroyed and then spread across the river. Some people even say that Wycliff was actually the morning star of the reformation. He was the one that God used to start the ball rolling in the very necessary reformation of the church.

Wycliff also had disciple or another student by the name of John Huss. Huss was equally passionate about getting God’s Word in the hands of as many people as possible. Unfortunately, Huss too was called a heretic and he was burned at the stake. But get this, what do you think they used to start the fire around Huss as they burned him at the stake? They used his teacher, Wycliff’s Bibles. They spread Bibles all around him and lit the Bibles on fire to burn Huss at the stake. But it was Huss’ final words that became known as a prophecy that helped direct the future of the church. At the stake before he was burned, the last words of John Huss were these. He said, “In the next 100 years, God will raise up a man whose call for reform cannot be suppressed.” And that’s exactly what God did.

In the year 1517, God raised up the man named Martin Luther who was so fed up with all of the corruption in the church, he actually believed that God was calling him to help reform the church. In fact, it was on All Hallow’s Eve that Martin Luther took what became know as his 95 Theses, a document with 95 claims of heresy, and he went and he nailed it to the door of the Wittenburg Church. People now describe that event as “the knock that was heard around the world.” God used those accusations of heresy to spark what’s become known as the reformation of the protestant church. God also used Martin Luther to take the Bible and translate it into the German language. He then took the recent invention called the printing press, the invention of Gutenburg, and he leveraged it to now the Bible into the hands of the masses. Of course Luther was called a heretic, people wanted to kill him and he had to spend much of his life on the run. But God used him to spark major changes in the church and to get the Word of God into the hands of the masses.

About that same time there was another man, and Oxford professor, his name was John Colet and he translated the Bible into English for his Oxford students. He also taught the Bible in the English language at St. Paul’s Cathedral in London where believe it or not, over 20,000 people would pack themselves into this cathedral simply to hear the Word of God in a language that they understand. Not only were there 20,000 people in the building but it’s said there would be just as many people outside the building waiting for their turn to get in. Why? Because they were hungry, they were desperate, they would do anything to simply hear the Word of God. What’s sad is that beautiful cathedral still exists today, but instead of 20,000 people a weekend, they minister to about 200 people a weekend and most of these are simply tourists.

Your word, O LORD, is eternal; it stands firm in the heavens. -Psalm 119:89 (NIV)

In the year 1526, there was a man named William Tyndale who befriended Martin Luther and God used William Tyndale to print the very first English Bible. That’s the good news, the bad news is that anyone caught with this illegal bible would be executed immediately. You could imagine what demand there was for people who read English and wanted to read God’s Word in a language they could understand, they would do almost anything to get God’s Word into their hands. These people, they were incredibly creative and would often smuggle into England using all sorts of different means. Occasionaly, they’d put Bibles in bails of cotton to smuggle them in or sometimes they’d put Bibles into bags full of flour. Ironically, the biggest buyers of Tyndale’s Bibles, were actually the king’s men. That’s right, the king’s men would buy up as many English Bibles as they could not because they wanted to read them, but instead they wanted to burn and destroy all of Tyndale’s Bibles. Well, Tyndale was a good business man and he would simply take the profits of all the Bibles the king’s men would buy and he would use the money to print even more Bibles to get the Word of God out. Unfortunately, since what he was doing was considered illegal, Tyndale was on the run for 11 years of his life.

Blessed are those who are persecuted because of righteousness, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. -Matthew 5:10 (NIV)

Imagine waking up every single morning knowing that people were hunting you down wanting to kill you simply because you want to help other people experience the Word of God. That’s what Tyndale experienced day after day, week after week, month after month, year after year, he was running for his life as people wanted to execute him. Sadly, they eventually caught up to him and incarcerated him for about 500 days before they finally decided in the year 1536 to burn him at the stake. His last words though were a prayer to God which people will remember forever. He prayed, “Oh, Lord! Open the eyes of the King of England.” And 3 years later in 1539 God answered that prayer. Not only did the King of England allow the printing of the Bible in the English language, but he actually helped to fund it, setting the Word of God free.

Think about this. Remember all the people who died, gave their lives fighting with everything in them to help God’s living and active Word be available to you and sadly so many people today, they “shakach”, neglect God’s living word

“For the word of God is living and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart.” – Hebrews 4:12 (NIV)

Posted by: jesusmessiah | August 21, 2008

Behold, I Shew You A Mystery

In 1 Corinthians 15:51-54, the Apostle Paul tells the church at Corinth,

“Behold, I shew you a mystery; We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed, In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump: for the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed. For this corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal must put on immortality. So when this corruptible shall have put on incorruption, and this mortal shall have put on immortality, then shall be brought to pass the saying that is written, Death is swallowed up in victory.

And to the church in Thessalonica in 1 Thessalonians 4:16,

“For this we say unto you by the word of the Lord, that we which are alive and remain unto the coming of the Lord shall not prevent them which are asleep. For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first: Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord. Wherefore comfort one another with these words.”

The mystery being spoken of here is a truth that had not previously been revealed in the Old Testament but is now being revealed in the New Testament. Although the idea of the resurrection is clearly taught in the Old Testament, the teaching of the Rapture is not. This is the first mention of the Rapture of the Church.

The context of what Paul is talking about is the resurrection and the order of the events taking place at the time of the resurrection. Paul says that before the Rapture, the dead in Christ will rise first. These are those who have died from the time after the death and resurrection of Jesus until today. And then, we who are still alive at the time of the rapture will be caught up together to meet the Lord in the air. And in that moment our mortal bodies will be changed in the twinkling of an eye and we will receive our new glorified bodies.

Paul makes this very clear. Corruption putting on incorruption is a reference to the saints who have died and decaying and that their bodies are corrupt. Then the mortal putting on immortality is referring to those alive when He comes.

Now, look at the immanency of Christ’s return. Notice how Paul expects to see the Lord in his lifetime. Verse 52 shows the immanency. Notice how he uses the word “we”. He was including himself in the event of the Rapture. He lived his life in the light that Jesus could return and rapture the church at any moment. Paul’s take on it shows that the Rapture was of course a Pre-Tribulation rapture because he felt that it was so immanent.

Now listen to what Jesus tells his disciples in Luke 17:26-30.

“And as it was in the days of Noe, so shall it be also in the days of the Son of man. They did eat, they drank, they married wives, they were given in marriage, until the day that Noah entered into the ark, and the flood came, and destroyed them all. Likewise also as it was in the days of Lot; they did eat, they drank, they bought, they sold, they planted, they builded; But the same day that Lot went out of Sodom it rained fire and brimstone from heaven, and destroyed them all. Even thus shall it be in the day when the Son of man is revealed.”

Jesus is making a reference to the Rapture. He is telling the disciples that it will happen much as the days of Noah and Lot were. Taking place as it was in the days of Noah, how they were caught surprised. They were going about their normal day to day business. Then when Noah and his family stepped onto the ark, then the flood came. As with Lot, the people of Sodom and Gomorrah were going about their own sinful ways as well and when Lot and his family were removed from the city, then God’s judgment came down upon the cities. Likewise will it be with the Rapture. Once the Lord removes His Church from the sinful world, then the Tribulation will begin.

He mentions that He will come as a thief in the night indicating that he will not be seen by everyone. But when talking about the Second Coming, He says that every eye will see Him. Notice some are sleeping and some are working indicating that it will be night some places and daytime in others. No one will see Jesus at that time except for those who meet Him in the air. Carrying on with life as usual until the Lord comes and disrupts their scene.

God has not appointed His church to wrath. The wrath of God is the Tribulation period. The Bible tells us that we have tribulation now but that comes from the world and Satan. The Tribulation period is the wrath of God, and God is not going to punish His bride.

You’ll notice that the Rapture takes place at the sound of a trumpet. The trumpet sounding is what signals the Rapture. Notice also that it is called the LAST trumpet. Now having said that we know that there are 7 angels that are given 7 trumpets to sound and when they do sound there are 7 judgments that come upon the earth. There are those that say that the last trumpet is the 7th trumpet being spoken of in 1 Corinthians 15:52. That would mean that the Rapture does not take place until the middle of the Tribulation. So in order for the church to hear the last trumpet the church must go through the first half of the Tribulation.

This is just simply not true.

Without a doubt, these are not the same trumpets. First of all the trumpets sounded are sounded by angels. The trumpet that will sound when the Rapture takes place is the trumpet of God. God will blow his trumpet.

This trumpet signals great joy! Only believers will hear this. The 7th trumpet in Revelation is considered a woe. Woe, woe, woe it is said of the last 3 trumpets. The trumpet of God is not a trumpet of judgment but of rejoicing. We are to comfort one another with these words. If the trumpet that sounds at the Rapture is the 7th, then this doesn’t seem like a comforting doctrine to me. We’re going to go through hell on earth before the Rapture even takes place. We’ll go into the Tribulation and there will be suffering and persecution. This is not a comforting doctrine to me. Is this was Paul was speaking of? No, of course not. The Rapture becomes comforting to me when I know that this event removes me from the Tribulation to come.

The church is not going through the Tribulation. Why would God the Father want to punish His bride? The Tribulation is referred to as a time of Jacob’s trouble. It has to do with the Jews. It’s at that time that God wakes up the Jewish people and brings them to salvation. When will the rapture take place? When will the trumpet sound? At the end of the church age. When the last person who needs to get saved, gets saved.

Revelation 2-3 is an overview of church history. Even though they were written to 7 churches existing at that time. Each of these has a secondary application as often does in Scripture, especially prophecy. They actually are a reference to the 7 different stages of church history as God sees them from beginning to end.

Then John says in Revelation 4:1, once he is finished writing about the churches,

“After this I looked, and, behold, a door was opened in heaven: and the first voice which I heard was as it were of a trumpet talking with me; which said, Come up hither, and I will shew thee things which must be hereafter.”

After these things (pertaining to the church), after the church ages are over, a door in heaven was opened and a voice that sounded like a trumpet saying come up hither and I will show you things AFTER this. After the church age. I believe this is the Rapture right here.

Does this ring a bell?

When the church ministry on earth is complete a door will open and a trumpet will sound and the church will be caught up. Paul wrote in Romans 11:25,

“For I would not, brethren, that ye should be ignorant of this mystery, lest ye should be wise in your own conceits; that blindness in part is happened to Israel, until the fulness of the Gentiles be come in.”

Until the fullness of the Gentiles comes in. Since the Jews rejected Jesus as Messiah, God is now working among the Gentile nations to bring a bride unto Himself. Once that last Gentile who needs to be saved comes to salvation, God will focus His energy on Israel.

Many claim that the whole concept of a Pre-Tribulation rapture was never even heard of until 1828 when John Darby first began teaching it. Well, these people are wrong who believe this because there is evidence of the Church teaching the Rapture 1100 years before John Darby.

One of the most important evidences for this is an apocalyptic sermon from the 4th century titled “Sermon on the End of the World”. It is said to be from a man named Ephrem the Syrian who lived from 306-373 A.D. He was a Syriac deacon, theologian, and hymnographer of the 4th century. He wrote many hymns, poems, homilies and biblical commentaries. Some suggest it may not have been written until a later date between 565-627 A.D., but for our purposed, the exact date doesn’t matter, allowing the sermon’s composition as late as the 7th century. This is still 1100 years prior to John Darby.

The ancient author wrote this:

“Why therefore do we not reject every care of earthly actions and prepare ourselves for the meeting of the Lord Christ, so that he may draw us from the confusion, which overwhelms all the world? Believe you me, dearest brother, because the coming (advent) of the Lord is nigh, believe you me, because the end of the world is at hand, believe me, because it is the very last time. Or do you not believe unless you see with your eyes? See to it that this sentence be not fulfilled among you of the prophet who declares: “Woe to those who desire to see the day of the Lord!” For all the saints and elect of God are gathered, prior to the tribulation that is to come, and are taken to the Lord lest they see the confusion that is to overwhelm the world because of our sins.”

There is no mistaking that the author was speaking of the saints being gathered together before the Tribulation.

There were many others who believed this long before John Darby.

In 150 AD, the Rapture idea was preached by the Shepherd of Hermas.
In 270 AD, Victorinus, the Bishop of Pettau, a Catholic ecclesiastical writer preached it.
In 400 AD, Jerome in the Latin vulgate (in the Catholic Bible)

Why then has the Pre-Tribulation doctrine emerged so prominently over the past 200 years?

The Bible, prior to 200 years ago was kept out of the hands of the common people. The bible was effectively locked in museums and monasteries for 1000 years during the period known as the Dark Ages. It wasn’t until the Bible was translated into the language of the common people and that then the hope of the pre-millennial return of Christ was once again established in the Church, the Rapture. Once the Scriptures were made available to everybody the ancient truth of the Rapture before the Tribulation period was once again discovered.

Here are some other teachers of the Pre-Tribulation Rapture beginning around the ending of the Dark Ages.

In 1304 AD, Reverend Dolcino proclaimed the Pre-Tribulation Rapture.
In 1400 AD, Bible translations in the native tongues led to a new propagation of the Pre-trib Rapture.
In 1627 AD, Joseph Mede
1627 AD Increase Mather
1687 AD, Peter Jurieu
1700 AD, John Asgill
1738 AD, Philip Doddridge
1748 AD, John Gill
1763 AD, James McKnight
1744 AD, Morgan Edwards
1792 AD, Thomas Scott
And then in 1830 AD, John Darby.

So you’ll see, John Darby was not the originator of this doctrine.

*For more information on the Bible and the Dark Ages, look for an upcoming post titled History of the Bible.*

Posted by: jesusmessiah | August 19, 2008

Special Announcement

As I have mentioned previously before I went on vacation, I have been working on something big. I had intended to complete it within a few weeks, but it may take a little longer. Rather than post everything here when I am finished, I have decided that I will make an attempt to instead turn it into a book and attempt to get it published. So if you all would pray for me I would greatly appreciate it.

I do not wish to give many details about the book as of yet but I will tell you that it is non-fiction. Only 2 people know of what I have been doing. One is my wife and the other is a good friend of mine who is the inspiration for the book.

Also I should add that with my new goal ahead, I may not have as much time to work on as many posts as usual but I will do my best. The support from my readers helps motivate me to do as much as I can and hopefully after my book is completed I will be able to publish many more posts.

I will keep you all posted with the progress.

Posted by: jesusmessiah | August 16, 2008

God’s Waiting Room

This I compiled together from notes I had taken from church a couple months ago. I hope everyone enjoys this. Sometimes it feels like God has gave us a mission or dream and yet, it doesn’t seem like is acting as fast or in the way we want Him to. It’s kind of like being in the waiting room of a doctor’s office just waiting our turn. I’m sure Abraham felt the same way and it seems like God has a certain method of going about things.

“He has made everything beautiful in its time. He has also set eternity in the hearts of men; yet they cannot fathom what God has done from beginning to end.” -Eccl. 3:11

How to Keep on Believing While You’re Waiting On God

1. Understand the Six Phases of Faith

Phase 1: Dream (Age 75)
“I will make you into a great nation…” Gen. 12:1-3

Phase 2: Decision
“So Abraham left as the Lord had told him to…” Gen. 12:4

Phase 3: Delay (Age 86)
“But Sarah still had not borne any children…” Gen. 16:1

Phase 4: Difficulty (Age 99)
“How can a son be born to a man my age?” Gen. 17:17

Phase 5: Dead End
“Take your only son, whom you love, and sacrifice him…” Gen. 21:1-6, 22:1-12

Phase 6: Deliverance
“Don’t hurt the boy…I’ve provided a lamb…” Gen. 22:12-14

2. Remember What God Can Do
“Abraham believed God who gives life to the dead and who creates something out of nothing.” -Romans 4:17 (NCV)

“What is impossible with men is possible with God.” -Luke 18:27

3. Rely on God’s Promises
“Against all hope, Abraham in hope believed and so became the father of many nations, just as it had been said to him, “So shall your offspring be.” -Romans 4:18

“While God was testing him, Abraham still trusted in God and his promises, so he offered up his son Isaac…” – Heb. 11:17 (LB)
“Though it seemed Abraham’s hope could not be fulfilled…he did become the father of many nations, exactly as God had promised.” -Romans 4:18

4. Recognize The Facts in Faith
“Without weakening in his faith, he faced the fact that his body was as good as dead…and that Sarah’s womb was also dead. Yet he did not waver through unbelief…” – Romans 4:19-20a

5. Rejoice In Anticipation
If you’re at the dead end of your journey…congratulations! Our God is faithful and deliverance is on it’s way. So rejoice and be patient and keep the faith.

Posted by: jesusmessiah | August 11, 2008

Sigh of Relief

Well, I sure am glad nothing catastrophic happened on the 9th of Av as many things have in history.

I may not get around to posting much this next week since I will be on vacation, but I am currently working on something very big. I hope to complete it within the next couple weeks.

Posted by: jesusmessiah | August 8, 2008

Answers for the Rational Response Squad (Part 4)

11. In II Kings 2-23/24 we read about God sending 2 she-bears to attack children for calling the prophet Elisa bald, which he was, the bears killed 42 of the children. Was this a good thing to do? — Brandon and IG[Note: I have heard some argue that the boys were a gang. So?! I didn’t read anywhere in that passage where they laid a finger on the guy . Also, what kind of bears are these that can kill 42 kids? Super Bears? Surely the kids had to be running away.]

–First of all, these were NOT young children who were mocking Elisha. They were “nearim ketannim” (Hebrew), i.e. young men probably in their early 20’s.

Second: Elijah had just ascended to Heaven and these young men were aware of this. In Hebrew, they shouted “aleh kereach, aleh kereach,” which means “ascend, empty skull, to heaven.” In other words, they were mocking God, even though He had just performed a genuine sign and miracle. They were accusing Elisha, who was Elijah’s understudy, of taking part in Elijah’s stupidity. This is blatant blasphemy and Elisha pronounced a curse upon them.

Since Bethel was the royal religious center of the northern kings and Elijah and Elisha were known to frequent Samaria, the youths from Bethel no doubt assumed that Elisha was going up to Samaria to continue Elijah’s struggle against royal apostasy. Baldness was uncommon among the ancient Jews, and luxuriant hair was viewed as a sign of strength and vigor. By calling Elisha “baldhead,” the youths from Bethel expressed that city’s utter disdain for the Lord’s representative, who,they felt, had no power.

Elisha pronounced a curse similar to the covenant curse of Leviticus 26:21-22. The result gave warning of the judgment that would come on the entire nation should it persist in disobedience and apostasy. This Elisha’s first acts were indicative of his ministry that would follow: God’s covenant blessings would come to those who looked to him, but God’s covenant curses would fall on those who turned away from him.–

12. I have often heard from many believers that even Satan has a presence in the church, which is why even in church people can still have impure thoughts. If Satan can find his way in the church, how do Christians know that Satan didn’t find his way into the Bible and twist the whole book? After all, men did vote on which books would make the Holy Bible. – The Infidel Guy

–We know that the Bible is true and uncorrupted because of the person of Jesus Christ and because it is consistent with reason, facts, and shows evidence of God’s inspiration. You see, Christianity is only as true as Jesus is true.  If it can be shown that Jesus lied, failed to perform miracles, was not God in flesh, and did not rise from the dead, then Christianity is false and we are deceived. Jesus, who claimed to be divine, performed many miracles, and rose from the dead said that he alone was the truth.  He was either right or wrong.  There is no in between.  If Jesus is wrong, then Christianity is a wrong.  If Jesus did not rise from the dead, then we should abandon our faith because he would be no different than anyone else.  If Jesus is not God in flesh, then we should denounce him as a madman because you can’t claim to be God and be sane — unless the claim is true.  Therefore, if what Jesus said about himself is true, then Christianity is true.

Did Jesus fail to rise from the dead?  If so, why could no one produce the body?  Were the eyewitnesses of his resurrection really conspirators and liars?  Then how did they concoct such a lie based on eyewitness accounts that could have been verified at that time — yet we have no historical refutations of the gospel claims exist.  Why would they invent such a story that they know would probably cost them their lives?  Why would Paul, of Pharisees sent to destroy Christianity, suddenly convert and he said his conversion was based upon the appearance of the resurrected Christ?  The answer to always questions as best found in believing that Jesus was who he said he was, performed miracles, and rose from the dead.

You see, Christianity is only as true as Jesus is true.  If it can be shown that Jesus lied, failed to perform miracles, was not God in flesh, and did not rise from the dead, then Christianity is false and we are deceived.

There is nothing within the scope of Christian teaching that denies reason.  The doctrine of the Trinity may be a mystery, but it is not illogical.  The incarnation may be paradoxical in that the person of Jesus is both divine and human, but it is not impossible.  The resurrection of Christ may be enigmatic, but it does not defy logic — unless you deny the miraculous to begin with. Christianity is reasonable; that is, it does not violate logic.  It may contain mysteries and paradoxes, but there is nothing within its body of teaching that contradicts reason.

There is nothing within Christian teaching that denies the facts of history.  History and archaeology confirm the Bible.  We have many non biblical accounts of New Testament events and/or people. Josephus a Jewish historian (AD 37-101) mentioned John the Baptist and Herod (Antiquities, Book 18, ch. 5, par. 2), as well as Jesus (Antiquities, Book 18, ch. 3, par. 3) and James (Antiquities, Book 20, ch. 19).  Tacitus, a Roman historian (AD 55-117), mentions Jesus (Annals XV); Thallus (Circa AD 52), mentions the eclipse of the sun.

The facts of archaeological and history support the Bible and do not contradict it.  Various cities mentioned in it have been discovered:  Arad, Bethel, Capernaum, Chorizin, Dan, Ephesus, Gaza,  Gezer, Hazor, Hesbon, Jericho, Joppa, Nineveh, Schechem, Susa, etc.  The Hittites have been verified, as has the stables of Solomon, etc.  The point is, there is nothing in archaeology that contradicts biblical truth.  It agrees with and is consistent archaeology and history.

Evidence of biblical inspiration can be clearly seen in the prophecies found in the Old Testament and their fulfillment in the New.

The following cities were prophesied to be destroyed and never rebuilt which has come true since they have not yet been rebuilt.  Nineveh (Nah. 1:10; 3:7,15; Zeph. 2:13-14), Babylon (Isaiah 13:1-22), and Tyre (Ezek. 26:).

Prophecies about Jesus:  Jesus would be born of a virgin Isaiah 7:14 fulfilled in Matt. 1:18,25; His birthplace in Bethlehem Micah 5:2, fulfilled in Matt. 2:1; Preceded by a messenger Isaiah 40:3, fulfilled in Matt. 3:1-2; side pierced Zech. 12:10, fulfilled in John 19:34; that he would be crucified Psalm 22:1, 11-18, fulfilled in John 19:23-24.

Prophecies of the future and their fulfillment are evidence of God’s involvement in Christianity.  Though much more can be written on this topic, the evidence of God’s work in the Bible can be reasonably demonstrated to be true.  It is scientifically accurate, archaeologically accurate, and historically accurate.  This combined with the extremely well preserved documents written by the eyewitnesses, leads us to reasonably conclude that the Bible is excellently preserved, is not merely the product of human effort, and is divinely inspired.

Of course, there are critics who say that the Bible was altered to make it look as though Jesus fulfilled prophecies.  But this would mean the Bible was purposely written to be a deception.  What evidence exists for that claim?  How do the critics account for the Bible’s declaration of teaching truth while it is based on a lie?  Why would the disciples knowingly deceive and suffer ostracization from their culture and be willing to die for what they knew was false?  Such basic questions would need to be answered because those who would propose a new theory, need to answer the tough questions that their theories would raise.  Can they give a more reasonable explanation than the one contained in the Bible — that Jesus was who he said he was in and did what the Scriptures say he did? If no more feasible theories can be proposed that would account for all the facts, then the critics have nothing to stand on end the claims of Scripture are true.

There are other beliefs systems that claim to be valid, but they are either non-verifiable historically, or irrational internally.  For example Mormonism clearly contradicts the Bible (teaches God was a man on another planet, is married to a goddess wife, etc.), has no historical evidence to validate the book of Mormon, and teaches the logical impossibility of an eternal regression of causes.  It teaches that there is an infinite regression of gods being formed, i.e., an infinite list of causes in the past.  But this is impossible since this would require crossing an infinite amount of time (causal events) to get to the present. But an infinite amount of time cannot be crossed — otherwise it isn’t infinite.  Therefore, there cannot be an infinite regression of new gods being formed and Mormonism can’t be true.

Islam teaches that the Quran is the absolute truth revealed from their god Allah.  It further states, and this is critical, that if one fact in the Quran is incorrect, then Islam is not true.  But the Quran teaches a man’s seed comes from his chest, not testes, (Quran 86:5-7).  It describes crucifixion before its invention (Quran 7:123-124) and says that birds and ants can talk (27:16; 27:18).  Since these are not true, Islam can’t be either.

Atheism, as a negative world view, cannot be validated to be true, nor can it account for rationality since its materialistic perspective cannot bridge the gap between absolute, conceptual realities (i.e., logical absolutes on which reason is based) and the principle of materialism — that all things in the universe can be understood in terms of motion, matter, chemical reactions, etc.  Again, atheism can’t be verified as being true since it is a position of negativity.  A denial of the existence of something is almost always impossible to validate.

Reincarnation religions (Hinduism, Buddhism, etc.) have the problem of karma, the residual cause-and-effect from previous lives that governs future incarnation levels.  These incarnations serve the goal of teaching the soul, through life’s journey’s, so that they can return to the divine source (how can this be verified?).  But each soul had at its initial incarnation perfect karma, yet each soul failed to return to the source even while having had perfect karma.  Instead, each soul is locked in the ongoing cycle of reincarnation.  If the soul could not learned its lessons after experiencing perfect karma, how can it do so with imperfect karma? Furthermore, eastern-based religions deny the absolutes of logic and infer counter logical systems that contradict logic and cannot be validated through history or reason.  In essence, they are non-falsifiable.

The New Age Movement offers subjective, unverifiable experience as the underlying framework for its theological perspectives such as human divinity, divinity of nature, etc. It is an eclectic movement with numerous contradictory belief systems that rest under its broad umbrella.  How can anyone take it seriously.

These simplified and brief analysis of various systems demonstrate that their claims must be verifiable in some way (archaeology, ancient documents concurrent with verifiable history, etc.) and rational.  But, when a theological system cannot be verified using either normal historical examination or internal logical consistency, how can it be assumed to be true?  It can’t.

In conclusion, if anyone has anything better to offer than the claims, the deeds, and the sacrifice of Christ then perhaps we would go that way.  But since no one else has anything better to offer than Jesus and since no one else has fulfilled prophecies, performed miracles, raised people from the dead, risen from the dead, and promised to return for his people, than we are forced by reason and the evidence to continue to believe in Jesus, his teachings, and the truth that Christianity represents as is found in him.

Christianity is true and we are not deceived because Christianity is based on the person of Jesus who fulfilled prophecy, claimed to be God in flesh, performed many miracles, died, and physically rose from the dead, because it is consistent with reason, facts, and shows evidence of God’s inspiration. And finally, all other religious systems are either unverifiable or irrational thereby disqualifying them as being true.

Therefore, it is reasonable to conclude that Christianity is true and that we are not being deceived. —

Posted by: jesusmessiah | August 8, 2008

Answers for the Rational Response Squad (Part 3)

4. When the believer gets to Heaven, how can Heaven be utter bliss when people they love and care about are burning in Hell ? – The Infidel Guy – [Note: Some say God erases your memories of them, but if God erases your memory, you as Mr. Joe /Jane Smoe ceases to exist.]

— The unregenerate mind has no concept of God’s mind or His infinite power. If God can speak the sun into existence; if He can see every thougth of every human heart at the same time; if He can create the human eye with its 137,000,000 light-sensitive cells, then He can handle the minor details of our eternal salvation. God promises that there will not be sorrow or crying in heaven. Our focus in heaven won’t be on our loss, but on our gain. I don’t know exactly how God will handle it, but He will. BTW, there is no biblical evidence that God will erase your memories.


5. How can a God have emotions, i.e. jealousy, anger, sadness, love, etc., if he is omnipotent, omniscient, and omnipresent? Emotional states are reactionary for the most part. How can God react to us if he is all-knowing and has a divine plan? – IG [Note: Indeed, many religious texts display their gods this way . Listen to the An Emotional Godshow.]

–Knowing something does not prevent someone from reacting or being emotive toward it. If you were about to have a child, you know it’s coming, and when it comes out, that doesn’t stop you from being happy about it does it? Let me add that no where in Scripture is it ever mentioned that God was suprised by anything. So just because God knows what’s going to happen doesn’t stop Him from showing emotion toward it. —

6. Why would God create a place such as hell to torture sinners forever when he foreknew who would disappoint him? – IG [Note: Some say you have a choice, but this misses the point. If God hates sin so much, why create Adam and Eve when he knew they’d sin? The only conclusion I can come up with, if Yaweh exists, is that he wanted sin to enter the world.]

–First of all, Hell was not created as a place to torture sinners. Hell was created for the devil and his angels (Matthew 25:41). Secondly, God created Adam and Eve perfect and with free will. We can not possibly know all the reasons why God considered Creation. The Bible does tell us though that it is God’s desire for people to love and worship him. If mankind was forced to love God, that wouldn’t be true love at all. God wants us to choose to love him, that’s why Adam and Eve were given the free will. They had to option to love God by trusting and obeying Him, or they could sin against God by doing as they please.–

7. “God is all merciful,” we hear quite often. Wouldn’t it be more merciful of God to simply snap sinners out of existence rather than send them to hell? Or better yet, since he’s all-knowing, not allow them to be born at all? – IG
ON GOD’S LOVE & HELL
1.) God’s love is superlative.
2.) God’s love of man exceeds man’s love of self.
3.) Man’s love of self prohibits torture.
4.) Considering God’s greater love for us, Hell (eternal torture) is illogical.

— Simply put, no. It would not be more merciful of God to do that. God can use anyone for his purposes. That may be the alcoholic abusive father of a child. After being abused by his drunken father for years and finally having children of his own, makes a decision to never be like his father and instead is led to repentance. That person, whether they become a Christian or not in their lifetime, has the ability to affect others who may decide to accept Christ because of them. Another choice would be for God to judge and remove those who choose to commit evil acts. The problem with this possibility is that there would be no one left, for God would have to remove us all. We all sin and commit evil acts (Romans 3:23; Ecclesiastes 7:20; 1 John 1:8). While some people are more evil than others, where would God draw the line? Ultimately, all evil causes harm to others.

One more example would be the Joseph who was sold by his brothers as a servant and later came to power in Egypt. Later after famine set in where his family lived, his brothers came to Egypt for help. Later Joseph’s brothers begged for Joseph to forgive them of their terrible sin. And Joseph replied, “As for you, you meant evil against me, but God meant it for good in order to bring about this present result, to preserve many people alive.” —

8. Muslims are supposed to pray 5 times a day towards Mecca. Each prayer includes a variety of ritualism and posturing. If a muslim astronaut were to land on Mars. Prayer to Mecca would be ritualistically impossible due to the rotation of Earth and Mars. Are Muslims stuck here in Earth? IG [Note: Since this was first posted, a Muslim astronaut was faced with this very dilemma. The authoritative clergy informed him to pray as he normally would. I see this no where in the Koran. You see? Religions must change, or die out. It’s interesting to note that, in the Koran, the moon is believed to be in the lowest Heaven, the level for those that barely made it to Heaven. Surah 71:15-16. One problem, no man can supposedly get to Heaven until they die. Yet, we’ve been to the moon. Our satellites beyond that.]

–This question doesn’t particularly pertain to Christianity. If anything, this should help to prove that Islam is a system of false beliefs since there are no Muslims on the moon.–

9. Why haven’t we seen God reattach severed heads, restore someone who was burned alive or regrow amputated limbs? Surely these would be miracles difficult to deny. – Adam Majors and IG [Note: The typical answer is that man doesn’t dictate God’s actions. The conundrum here however is that, if God wants us to “know” him, then surely feats such as those mentioned above would be happening all over the world. Until they do, I’ll remain an atheist.]

— Strange how you say you would believe these miracles yet you can’t even believe in God after He raised someone from the dead.
Luke:16:31 “And he (Jesus) said to him, If they hear not Moses and the prophets, neither will they be persuaded, thoug hone rose from the dead.?–

10. Why does God entrust the spreading of ‘His’ word to sinners? Why doesn’t he do it himself? – IG [Note: Surely God would have known that not everyone would be convinced by the reality[sic] of his Bible. If God loves us so much, we are all going to Heaven. If God knew that I would be an atheist, and he doesn’t like atheists, he shouldn’t have allowed me to come into existence. But he did. Therefore, I must be serving the will of God, for I exist. Smiling]

–In answering this question, one may simply choose to say “because He’s God and it’s His decision.” And that is true and even biblical (For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts -Isaiah 55:9)

In addition to the above theory, I would also offer this answer. I would describe God’s using us to accomplish His purposes as an act of love on His part toward us. He could do it without us, but then we wouldn’t be privileged to enjoy seeing God accomplish His purposes through us. For example, it’s always great when a hungry person gets food, but it is much more personally fufilling if you got to be the one to hand them the bread. I’m always excited to hear of someone trusting in Christ, but nothing is as exciting as when God allows me to be there when it happens! God uses us to accomplish His purposes for His good pleasure and for our benefit, not because we can do something he cannot.–

Posted by: jesusmessiah | August 8, 2008

Answers for the Rational Response Squad (Part 2)

2. If Gen 3:24 is true, why hasn’t anyone found the Cherubims and the ” flaming sword which turned every way”?

— The tree of life is no longer in the Garden of Eden, it’s in the paradise of God (Revelation 2:7) —

3. It’s been proven that modern humans originated from Africa. Yet, the Adam and Eve story claims the first Humans lived in a garden in Eden, near 4 rivers. ( Most of which no one can find). One of these rivers mentioned is the Euphrates, which runs through Iraq, Syria and a portion of Turkey. What’s the truth? Did man come out of Africa or near the Euphrates River? – The Infidel Guy

— It has not been proven that humans originated from Africa, only that the “oldest known human remains” have been found in Africa. It is still only a theory and no theory should be believed as long as it is but theory.

Another problem is that Carbon-14 dating is unreliable. Carbon-14 dating is the standard method used by scientists to determine the age of certain fossilized remains. As scientists will often claim something to be millions or billions of years old (ages that do not conform to the Biblical account of the age of the earth), Christians are often left wondering about the accuracy of the carbon-14 method. The truth is, carbon-14 dating (or radiocarbon dating, as it’s also called) is not a precise dating method in many cases, due to faulty assumptions and other limitations on this method.

Carbon has a weight of twelve atomic mass units (AMU’s), and is the building block of all organic matter (plants and animals). A small percentage of carbon atoms have an atomic weight of 14 AMU’s. This is carbon-14. Carbon-14 is an unstable, radioactive isotope of carbon 12. As with any radioactive isotope, carbon-14 decays over time. The half-life of carbon 14 is approximate 5,730 years. That means if you took one pound of 100 percent carbon-14, in 5,730 years, you would only have half a pound left.

Carbon-14 is created in the upper atmosphere as nitrogen atoms are bombarded by cosmic radiation. For every one trillion carbon-12 atoms, you will find one carbon-14 atoms. The carbon-14 that results from the reaction caused by cosmic radiation quickly changes to carbon dioxide, just like normal carbon-12 would. Plants utilize, or “breath in” carbon dioxide, then ultimately release oxygen for animals to inhale. The carbon-14 dioxide is utilized by plants in the same way normal carbon dioxide is. This carbon-14 dioxide then ends up in humans and other animals as it moves up the food chain.

There is then a ratio of carbon-14 to carbon-12 in the bodies of plants, humans, and other animals that can fluctuate, but will be fixed at the time of death. After death, the carbon-14 would begin to decay at the rate stated above. In 1948, Dr. W.F. Libby introduced the carbon-14 dating method at the University of Chicago. The premise behind the method is to determine the ratio of carbon-14 left in organic matter, and by doing so, estimate how long ago death occurred by running the ratio backwards. The accuracy of this method, however, relies on several faulty assumptions.

First, for carbon-14 dating to be accurate, one must assume the rate of decay of carbon-14 has remained constant over the years. However, evidence indicates that the opposite is true. Experiments have been performed using the radioactive isotopes of uranium-238 and iron-57, and have shown that rates can and do vary. In fact, changing the environments surrounding the samples can alter decay rates.

The second faulty assumption is that the rate of carbon-14 formation has remained constant over the years. There are a few reasons to believe this assumption is erroneous. The industrial revolution greatly increased the amount of carbon-12 released into the atmosphere through the burning of coal. Also, the atomic bomb testing around 1950 caused a rise in neutrons, which increased carbon-14 concentrations. The great flood which Noah and family survived would have uprooted and/or buried entire forests. This would decrease the release of carbon-12 to the atmosphere through the decay of vegetation.

Third, for carbon-14 dating to be accurate, the concentrations of carbon-14 and carbon-12 must have remained constant in the atmosphere. In addition to the reasons mentioned in the previous paragraph, the flood provides another evidence that this is a faulty assumption. During the flood, subterranean water chambers that were under great pressure would have been breached. This would have resulted in an enormous amount of carbon-12 being released into the oceans and atmosphere. The effect would be not unlike opening a can of soda and having the carbon dioxide fizzing out. The water in these subterranean chambers would not have contained carbon-14, as the water was shielded from cosmic radiation. This would have upset the ratio of carbon-14 to carbon-12.

To make carbon-14 dating work, Dr. Libby also assumed that the amount of carbon-14 being presently produced had equaled the amount of carbon-12 – he assumed that they had reached a balance. The formation of carbon-14 increases with time, and at the time of creation was probably at or near zero. Since carbon-14 is radioactive, it begins to decay immediately as it’s formed. If you start with no carbon-14 in the atmosphere, it would take over 50,000 years for the amount being produced to reach equilibrium with the amount decaying. One of the reasons we know that the earth is less than 50,000 years old is because of the biblical record. Another reason we can know this is because the amount of carbon-14 in the atmosphere is only 78% what it would be if the earth were old.

Finally, Dr. Libby and the evolutionist crowd have assumed that all plant and animal life utilize carbon-14 equally as they do carbon-12. To be grammatically crass, this ain’t necessarily so. Live mollusks off the Hawaiian coast have had their shells dated with the carbon-14 method. These test showed that the shells died 2000 years ago! This news came as quite a shock to the mollusks that had been using those shells until just recently.

I’ve listed five faulty assumptions here that have caused overestimates of age using the carbon-14 method. The list of non-compliant dates from this method is endless. Most evolutionists today would conclude that carbon-14 dating is – at best – reliable for only the last 3000 to 3500 years. There is another reason that carbon-14 dating has yielded questionable results – human bias.

If you’ve ever been part of a medical study, you’re probably familiar with the terms “blind study” and “double-blind study”. In a blind study, using carbon-14 dating for example, a person would send in a few quality control samples along with the actual sample to the laboratory. The laboratory analyst should not know which sample is the one of interest. In this way, the analyst could not introduce bias into the dating of the actual sample. In a double-blind study (using an experimental drug study as an example), some patients will be given the experimental drug, while others will be given a placebo (a harmless sugar pill). Neither the patients nor the doctors while know who gets what. This provides an added layer of protection against bias.

Radiocarbon dates that do not fit a desired theory are often excluded by alleging cross-contamination of the sample. In this manner, an evolutionist can present a sample for analysis, and tell the laboratory that he assumes the sample to be somewhere between 50,000 years old and 100,000 years old. Dates that do not conform to this estimate are thrown out. Repeated testing of the sample may show nine tests that indicate an age of 5000 to 10,000 years old, and one test that shows an age of 65,000 years old. The nine results showing ages that do not conform to the pre-supposed theory are excluded. This is bad science, and it is practiced all the time to fit with the evolutionary model.

Perhaps the best description of the problem in attempting to use the Carbon-14 dating method is to be found in the words of Dr. Robert Lee. In 1981, he wrote an article for the Anthropological Journal of Canada, in which stated:

“The troubles of the radiocarbon dating method are undeniably deep and serious. Despite 35 years of technological refinement and better understanding, the underlying assumptions have been strongly challenged, and warnings are out that radiocarbon may soon find itself in a crisis situation. Continuing use of the method depends on a fix-it-as-we-go approach, allowing for contamination here, fractionation there, and calibration whenever possible. It should be no surprise then, that fully half of the dates are rejected. The wonder is, surely, that the remaining half has come to be accepted…. No matter how useful it is, though, the radiocarbon method is still not capable of yielding accurate and reliable results. There are gross discrepancies, the chronology is uneven and relative, and the accepted dates are actually the selected dates.”

The accuracy of carbon-14 dating relies on faulty assumptions, and is subject to human bias. At best, radiocarbon dating is only accurate for the past few thousand years. As we’ve seen though, even relatively youthful samples are often dated incorrectly. The Biblical record gives us an indication of an earth that is relatively young. The most reliable use of radiocarbon dating supports that position. This method of dating, overall, tends to be as faulty and ill conceived as the evolutionary model that is was designed to support. —

Posted by: jesusmessiah | August 8, 2008

Answers for the Rational Response Squad (Part 1)

A few months back I came across a set of 89 questions compiled by someone from the Rational Response Squad and decided I would work on answering these questions for them. I haven’t been able to answer all of them yet. I haven’t got to work on these questions in a few months but I’m going to post what I have answered and continue to answer all of them eventually.

1. If Jesus fulfilled all the OT prophecies so well, why didn’t the Jews recognize him as the messiah? – Francois Tremblay

There are a few reasons why Jews do not acknowledge Jesus as the messiah and I will address each one individually. Many of which are simple misunderstandings of the Scripture.

1. Jews believe Jesus did not fulfill the messianic prophecies.
A. Messiah is to build the Third Temple (Micah 4:1)
–This passage of Scripture does not mention that Messiah will rebuild the Temple, only that it will be rebuilt. —

B. Jews believe Messiah must be a member of the tribe of Judah (Genesis 49:10) and a direct male descendant of both King David (I Chronicles 17:11, Psalm 89:29-38, Jeremiah 33:17, II Samuel 7:12-16) and King Solomon. (I Chronicles 22:10, II Chronicles 7:18 )

— The main problem about this with the Jews is that Jesus did not have a physical father. They believe that a person’s genealogy and tribal membership is transmitted exclusively through one’s physical father (Numbers 1:18, Jeremiah 33:17). After examination of both of those passages of Scriptures, neither one states that a person’s genealogy and tribal membership is transmitted exclusively through one’s physical father, which is once again as I have mentioned a simple misunderstanding of the Scripture.

The next problem that arises would be the genealogies of Joseph and Mary (Jesus’ mother). The genealogy of Joseph mentions that he was a descendent of King Jeconiah, who in the Hebrew Bible was cursed to never have a descendent “sitting on the throne of David and ruling any more in Judah” (Jeremiah 22:30). Joseph’s genealogy, even if it were transmittable to Jesus, would only serve to further disqualify Jesus as the Messiah. But Joseph was NOT the physical father of Jesus, therefore this genealogy would not pertain to Jesus.

The next problem is with Mary’s genealogy. There is no mention of Jeconiah in Mary’s genealogy, but there is a mention of Zerubbabel, the grandson of Jeconiah. As part of the curse of Jeconiah mentioned in Jeremiah 22, he was to be childless and his descendants would not prosper.

The solution to this simply that Jeconiah repented, so God reversed the curse. Though Zerubbabel did not sit on the throne as king, the fact that Haggai 2:23 uses the same terminology as Jeremiah 22:24 shows that Haggai intended to indicate a reversal of the curse.

There are also many rabbinic sources which also agree that God reversed the curse on Jeconiah which they attribute to repentance on Jeconiah’s part. After examination, we even find the idea that the Messiah will descend from Jeconiah–exactly the opposite of what some say is impossible! For the sake of salvaging what room I can in this post, I will not include the actual context of the sources, but if someone desires for me to do so in another post I will. The sources come from the following:

  • Sanhedrin 37b-38a –Soncino Talmud edition, with selected footnotes
  • Pesikta de-Rab Kahana (5th c.) –Yale Judaica edition translated by William G. Braude and Israel J. Kapstein (Philadelphia: Jewish Publication Society of America, 1975), pp. 376-77. Bracketed portions are Braude and Kapstein’s explanations.
  • Leviticus Rabbah XIX:6 (5th-6th c.) –Soncino Midrash Rabbah vol. 4, p. 249
  • Pesikta Rabbati, Piska 47 (6th-7th c.) –Yale Judaica edition translated by William G. Braude (New Haven: Yale University Press, 1968), vol. 2, p. 797.
  • Numbers Rabbah XX:20 (date uncertain; 9th c.?) –Soncino Midrash Rabbah vol 6, pp. 812-13
  • Rabbi A. J. Rosenberg, on Jeremiah 22:30 (20th c.) –A. J. Rosenberg, Jeremiah: A New English Translation (New York: Judaica Press, 1985), vol. 1 p. 185. “Redak” is an acronym for Rabbi David Kimchi (13th c.), whose opinion Rosenberg cites.
  • Encyclopedia Judaica –“Jehoiachin” (9:1319).
  • Tanhuma Genesis, Toledot (8th-9th c.) –Midrash Tanhuma-Yelammedenu, translated by Samuel A. Berman (Hoboken, NJ: Ktav, 1996), p. 182.
  • Rabbi A. J. Rosenberg on Jeremiah 22:24 (20th c.) –Ibid., p. 183. Malbim is an acronym for Meir Loeb ben Jehiel Michale, a 19th c. rabbi and commentator. 22:24.
  • Jewish Encyclopedia –Louis Ginzberg, “Jehoiachin,” vol. 7 p. 84. —

    And the final problem Jews have about the lineage of Jesus is that since He was not the physical son of Joseph, He is not a direct descendant of King Solomon (I Chronicles 22:10, II Chronicles 7:18). In Mary’s genealogy, King Solomon is not included but rather his brother Nathan.

    After examination of these Scriptures, the same conclusion is drawn that it is nothing more than a misunderstanding of the Scripture. Neither of these verses mention that Messiah will be a direct descendant of Solomon.

    There are many more reasons that would consume a lot of time discussing which I’ll save for another time.

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