29 April 2017

He's Coming Back

Theme: The King’s Return

Scriptures: Matthew 24:1-44

Notes and questions
B1 Different views on the passage
B2 Basic
  • Matthew 24 & 25 are Jesus’s answer to the disciple’s question in Matthew 24:1-3.
    • Now as He sat on the Mount of Olives, the disciples came to Him privately, saying, “Tell us, when will these things be? And what [will be] the sign of Your coming, and of the end of the age?” (Matthew 24:3, NKJV)
      • When will these things be?
      • What is the sign of your coming?
      • What is the sign of the end of the age?
    • Dr. Arnold Fruchtenbaum, says Israel must call for the Lord to rescue them as a condition for the second coming, based upon Matthew 23:39. Dr Fruchtenbaum explains: But then He declares that they will not see Him again until they say, Blessed is He that cometh in the name of the Lord. This is a messianic greeting. It will mean their acceptance of the Messiahship of Jesus. So Jesus will not come back to the earth until the Jews and the Jewish leaders ask Him to come back. For just as the Jewish leaders lead the nation to the rejection of the Messiahship of Jesus, they must some day lead the nation to the acceptance of the Messiahship of Jesus  Link   “O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, the one who kills the prophets and stones those who are sent to her! How often I wanted to gather your children together, as a hen gathers her chicks under [her] wings, but you were not willing! “See! Your house is left to you desolate; “for I say to you, you shall see Me no more till you say, ‘Blessed [is] He who comes in the name of the LORD!’ ” (Matthew 23:37-39, NKJV)
  • Cross references (Mark 13 and Luke 21)
  • Does this passage mainly speak of the time before the Rapture or of the time in the Tribulation? (Tribulation)
  • The are two main views of Matthew 24-25
    • Preterism, which is that all has been fulfilled by 70 AD (most hold that Messiah, Lord Jesus, did not return then).
      • Literal interpretation sometimes
      • Symbolic interpretation sometimes
      • So it depends how they can wrest the Scripture to support their view.
      • One point: The Temple was totally destroyed in 70 AD as predicted in Matthew 24:2; Mark 13:2; Luke 19:44. But the Temple in Matthew 24:15 is desecrated, not destroyed.
    • Tribulation time
      • Plain, normal sense interpretation throughout
      • Some things cannot have happened yet as in “Immediately after the tribulation of those days the sun will be darkened, and the moon will not give its light; the stars will fall from heaven, and the powers of the heavens will be shaken. “Then the sign of the Son of Man will appear in heaven, and then all the tribes of the earth will mourn, and they will see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of heaven with power and great glory. “And He will send His angels with a great sound of a trumpet, and they will gather together His elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other. (Matthew 24:29-31, NKJV)
    • Tribulation
      • 7 years
      • First 3.5 years are the tribulation.
      • Last 3.5 years are the great tribulation.
      • In the tribulation, God is dealing with Israel primarily, not Gentiles.
      • The Church is gone. Jesus came in the air to take us home. For the Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of an archangel, and with the trumpet of God. And the dead in Christ will rise first. Then we who are alive [and] remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And thus we shall always be with the Lord. (1 Thessalonians 4:16-17, NKJV)
B3 Questions

  • Matthew 24:1-3
    • The people of Israel, both leaders and citizens, have rejected Messiah. What is the result of this rejection?
    • What stones is Jesus referring to?
    • How does He know this information?
    • What is the role of prophecy?
      • Proof of Jesus being Yahweh
      • Warning, comfort, and knowledge of the future.
    • Why did He speak to them privately?
    • Did the Lord Jesus answer the question when?
  • Matthew 24:4-14
    • What is the first thing that the Lord Jesus tells the disciples? (Don’t be deceived).
    • How many Messiahs are there? (One)
    • How many claim to be Messiah? (Many)
    • What is the motive for all the wars? What is the spiritual condition of these people?
    • Why are there so many false prophets during this time?
    • Why does the love of many grow cold?
    • In light of Matthew 24:13, what does persecution accomplish for believers? (It separates the true from the false. When we are persecuted, God’s grace will help us endure. Now to Him who is able to keep them from stumbling, and to make you stand before His glory, blameless with exultation, (Jude 1:24 [EMTV]
    • Four things in light of Matthew 24:14
      • This is speaking of the tribulation period.
      • There will be 144,000 Israelite evangelists. Revelation 7:14
      • There will be the 2 witnesses. (I think they are Elijah and Enoch; most others believe Elijah and Moses. Regardless, there will be 2 witnesses). Revelation 11:3
      • Finally an angel will go through the earth, traveling in the sky, to preach the Gospel. Revelation 14:6
  • Matthew 24:15-28
    • Matthew 24:15 refers to the actions of The Antichrist: desecration of the Temple, self worship, causing others to worship him, and ultimate rebellion. The passage refers to Daniel 9:27 and Daniel 12:11.
    • Matthew 24:16-22 refer to those wise Jews who believe God. Note the word Sabbath, for Jews had limitations on travel. Those who believe God will flee, those who don’t will stay. Is it OK to flee persecution?
    • Matthew 24:23-28, who is our deliverer, our Messiah? Why do people turn to false messiahs? Do all false messiahs have to be religious figures?
    • The New Living Translation has Matthew 24:28 as: Just as the gathering of vultures shows there is a carcass nearby, so these signs indicate that the end is near.
  • Matthew 24:29-31
    • Has this happened yet?
    • Will it ever happen?
  • Matthew 24:32-35
    • Who is this generation? Some believe it is the people Jesus is speaking to, while others believe it is the people living at the time of the things happening in this chapter. It is most likely those who are living the incidents in this chapter, thus it is not those to whom Jesus was speaking but those living in the future.
    • Note the words all these things.
    • Tommy Ice writes: Since "all these things" did not take place in the first century then the generation that Christ speaks of must be future. Christ is saying that the generation that sees "all these things" occur will not cease to exist until all the events of the future tribulation are fulfilled. Frankly, this is both a literal interpretation and one that was not fulfilled in the first century. Christ is not ultimately speaking to His contemporaries, but to the generation to whom the signs of Matthew 24 will become evident. Dr. Darrell Bock concurs: What Jesus is saying is that the generation that sees the beginning of the end, also sees its end. When the signs come, they will proceed quickly; they will not drag on for many generations. It will happen within a generation. . . . The tradition reflected in Revelation shows that the consummation comes very quickly once it comes. . . . Nonetheless, in the discourse's prophetic context, the remark comes after making comments about the nearness of the end to certain signs. As such it is the issue of the signs that controls the passage's force, making this view likely. If this view is correct, Jesus says that when the signs of the beginning of the end come, then the end will come relatively quickly, within a generation. Link: http://www.pre-trib.org/articles/view/an-interpretation-of-matthew-24-25-part-31
    • In light of Matthew 24:35, does Jesus make mistakes in His words?
  • Matthew 24:36-44
    • “Nor the Son,” “Ed Glasscock echoes this understanding: "The Lord did not attempt to display His deity but rather, in contrast, emphasized His humanity. As an obedient servant in His humanity, Jesus did not know the day or the hour of His return." Source: Ed Glasscock, Matthew: Moody Gospel Commentary (Chicago: Moody Press, 1997), p. 476.
    • What happened in the days of Noah? How does that compare to the time the Lord Jesus is referring to?
    • In Noah’s day, were the people aware or did they make fun of the dire warnings from Noah? How do people today view the judgments coming on the world?
    • How are people to be ready?
  • Next week:
    • Embracing purity
    • Theme: Biblical purity
    • Scripture: 1 Corinthians 6:12-20 and Romans 12:1-2

21 April 2017

The King’s Commission

Theme: The King’s Commission

Scriptures: Matthew 28:16-20 and Acts 1:6-11

Know: Christ commissioned His followers to make disciples wherever He sends them.
Think: Live with the understanding that I am to share and teach the gospel at every opportunity, and be part of getting it to all the world.
Do: Share and teach the gospel with those I come in contact with, and help sent the gospel to all people groups.

Notes and questions:
B1 Situation
  • Map
  • Distance
  • Mountain in Galilee
B2 Is every Christian a missionary?
B3 Is every Christian an evangelist?
B4 What is motive of preaching the Gospel?
B5 A few textual issues
  • Matthew 28:17
    • Some manuscripts have “...worshipped him” while others leave out “him.”
    • It seems that the context clearly shows the object of worship is Jesus.
    • “Some doubted” in Matthew 28:17 is literally “they doubted,” but as Wilbur Pickering notes, The Text actually says “they doubted”—it seems improbable that all of them would doubt (after all, they had seen Him at least twice already), so most translations render “some”. Although verse 16 refers specifically to the eleven, there may have been others (like His half-brothers, verse 10) along who had not seen Him yet.
  • Matthew 28:19
    • “... baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit.”
    • Note the words and of the.
    • Wilbur Pickering in his notes on this passages remarks: Our Lord defines the Trinity here. According to Greek grammar the use of ‘and’ plus the definite article with items in a series makes clear that the items are distinct entities. So “the Father” is different from “the Son” is different from “the Holy Spirit”. So we have three persons. But He also said, “in the name”, singular, not ‘names’. So we have only one name. God is one ‘name’ or essence subsisting in three persons.
B6 Matthew 28:16-20
  • Who are the eleven? What happened to the 12th?
  • Why are they in Galilee?
  • Who were the ones who doubted? (Probably more than 11 went to the appointed hill in Galilee, perhaps, including Jesus’ half-brothers).
  • What are the 4 commands that Jesus gave? (We are to go and make disciples. Then when there are disciples, we are to baptize and teach them).
  • Were they to only teach part of Jesus’ teaching?
  • Why did Jesus include the nations in this commission?
  • Baptism here is water baptism. Christian baptism shows at least 4 things.
    • Shows our burial and resurrection WITH Jesus Christ. Or do you not know that as many of us as were baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into His death? Therefore we were buried with Him through baptism into death, that just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life. (Romans 6:3-4, NKJV)
    • Shows our obedience to Jesus Christ. Matthew 28:19
    • Shows that we willingly place ourselves under the Lordship of Jesus Christ. 1 Corinthians 10:2 ...all were baptized into Moses in the cloud and in the sea, (1 Corinthians 10:2, NKJV) and Ephesians 1:22 And He put all [things] under His feet, and gave Him [to be] head over all [things] to the church, (Ephesians 1:22, NKJV)
    • Shows that we have a clean conscience.
      • The blood of bulls and goats were a covering for sin but did not cleanse the conscience.
      • The perfect Passover Lamb (Therefore purge out the old leaven, that you may be a new lump, since you truly are unleavened. For indeed Christ, our Passover, was sacrificed for us. (1 Corinthians 5:7, NKJV) is Jesus Christ whose sacrifice did cleanse the conscience.
      • Water has NO sacramental effect, that is, water does not wash away sin.
      • The physical water saved Noah and the other 7, because of the ark, while for the others, the water caused their death.
      • What washes us clean is the blood of Jesus Christ. (But Christ came [as] High Priest of the good things to come, with the greater and more perfect tabernacle not made with hands, that is, not of this creation. Not with the blood of goats and calves, but with His own blood He entered the Most Holy Place once for all, having obtained eternal redemption. For if the blood of bulls and goats and the ashes of a heifer, sprinkling the unclean, sanctifies for the purifying of the flesh, how much more shall the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered Himself without spot to God, cleanse your conscience from dead works to serve the living God? (Hebrews 9:11-14, NKJV) and Revelation 1:5 (and from Jesus Christ, the faithful witness, the firstborn from the dead, and the ruler over the kings of the earth. To Him who loved us and washed us from our sins in His own blood, (Revelation 1:5, NKJV) Also Revelation 7:14.
  • What does the word observe mean?
    • It means to guard, keep, watch, etc. In our sense here, it would be obey as we would say keep the speed limit).
    • A quote from Rhoderick Ice in the The Bible study New Testament Explanatory Notes comment on this passage: The second part is to teach and instruct these disciples. To obey. Christianity is a way of life. We honor God by living “new lives.” Everything I have commanded you.
  • How many of the commands of the Lord Jesus are we to obey?
  • Haven’t times and culture changed, so that we do not have to obey these outdated commands? This is an evil teaching, because
    • Jesus said all
    • Some verses
      • who exchanged the truth of God for the lie, and worshiped and served the creature rather than the Creator, who is blessed forever. Amen. (Romans 1:25, NKJV) (The teaching here is that everything about God, who He is, what He believes, what He teaches, and what He wants creation (including us) how to live is corrupted and changed into something else).
      • But you have not so learned Christ, if indeed you have heard Him and have been taught by Him, as the truth is in Jesus: that you put off, concerning your former conduct, the old man which grows corrupt according to the deceitful lusts, and be renewed in the spirit of your mind, and that you put on the new man which was created according to God, in true righteousness and holiness. Therefore, putting away lying, “[Let each one of you] speak truth with his neighbor,” for we are members of one another. “Be angry, and do not sin”: do not let the sun go down on your wrath, nor give place to the devil. Let him who stole steal no longer, but rather let him labor, working with [his] hands what is good, that he may have something to give him who has need. Let no corrupt word proceed out of your mouth, but what is good for necessary edification, that it may impart grace to the hearers. And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, by whom you were sealed for the day of redemption. Let all bitterness, wrath, anger, clamor, and evil speaking be put away from you, with all malice. And be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God in Christ forgave you. (Ephesians 4:20-32, NKJV) (There is a Christian life to live).
    • The are about 1,000 laws in the New Testament for Christians. Some are given above in the quote from Ephesians.
    • God does not have a different law for different cultures, different eras, or different current nations.
    • By this we know that we love the children of God, when we love God and keep His commandments. For this is the love of God, that we keep His commandments. And His commandments are not burdensome. (1 John 5:2-3, NKJV) (Obedience is serious to God, and we should submit to God).
  • How long does Jesus promise to be with us?
    • Always
    • He is near to all, hoping for repentance. Acts 17:27-28 so that they should seek the Lord, in the hope that they might grope for Him and find Him, though He is not far from each one of us; “for in Him we live and move and have our being, as also some of your own poets have said, ‘For we are also His offspring.’ (Acts 17:27-28, NKJV)
    • He is near to all who call on Him for repentance and salvation. Psalm 145:18 The LORD [is] near to all who call upon Him, To all who call upon Him in truth. (Psalms 145:18, NKJV)
    • He is near all believers. 1 Corinthians 3:16 Do you not know that you are the temple of God and [that] the Spirit of God dwells in you? (1 Corinthians 3:16, NKJV)
    • He is near to meet all our deepest needs. Hebrews 13:5-6 [Let your] conduct [be] without covetousness; [be] content with such things as you have. For He Himself has said, “I will never leave you nor forsake you.” So we may boldly say: “The LORD [is] my helper; I will not fear. What can man do to me?”  (Hebrews 13:5-6, NKJV)
    • He is near us whenever and wherever we serve Him.
      • Philippians 4:10-13 But I rejoiced in the Lord greatly that now at last your care for me has flourished again; though you surely did care, but you lacked opportunity. Not that I speak in regard to need, for I have learned in whatever state I am, to be content: I know how to be abased, and I know how to abound. Everywhere and in all things I have learned both to be full and to be hungry, both to abound and to suffer need. I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me. (Philippians 4:10-13, NKJV)
      • Here is a good note in the book HandFuls on Purpose Volume 7 (1): This is not only the promise of His presence, it is the assurance of His co-operation. "The Lord is with thee... go in this thy might" (Judges 6:12-14). As servants, we are His property, to do His work, using His means and enjoying His presence and help. In this holy service we have nothing that we have not received, but in this lies the secret of our confidence. We take His yoke upon us, and so learn of Him who walks in the yoke with us.
    • Now hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out in our hearts by the Holy Spirit who was given to us. (Romans 5:5, NKJV)
    • Some have pointed out also that this can only be accomplished if Jesus is God the Son.
B10 Acts 1:4-11
  • Promise of the Holy Spirit baptism, which was fulfilled in Acts 2:1-4. This is the birth of the Church. The Church is all the believers in Jesus Christ from His resurrection until the rapture.
  • The Holy Spirit baptism happens to all true believers at conversion. There is NO so-called second blessing or the evidence of not receiving the Holy Spirit until one talks in tongues.
    • But you are not in the flesh but in the Spirit, if indeed the Spirit of God dwells in you. Now if anyone does not have the Spirit of Christ, he is not His. (Romans 8:9, NKJV).
    • In Him you also [trusted,] after you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation; in whom also, having believed, you were sealed with the Holy Spirit of promise, (Ephesians 1:13, NKJV)
    • Do you not know that you are the temple of God and [that] the Spirit of God dwells in you? (1 Corinthians 3:16, NKJV)
    • And many others.
  • What is the Kingdom?
    • It is believers
    • It is the DNA nation of Israel. This is the plain teaching of the Bible.
      • Seventy weeks are determined For your people and for your holy city, To finish the transgression, To make an end of sins, To make reconciliation for iniquity, To bring in everlasting righteousness, To seal up vision and prophecy, And to anoint the Most Holy. “Know therefore and understand, [That] from the going forth of the command To restore and build Jerusalem Until Messiah the Prince, [There shall be] seven weeks and sixty-two weeks; The street shall be built again, and the wall, Even in troublesome times. “And after the sixty-two weeks Messiah shall be cut off, but not for Himself; And the people of the prince who is to come Shall destroy the city and the sanctuary. The end of it [shall be] with a flood, And till the end of the war desolations are determined. Then he shall confirm a covenant with many for one week; But in the middle of the week He shall bring an end to sacrifice and offering. And on the wing of abominations shall be one who makes desolate, Even until the consummation, which is determined, Is poured out on the desolate.” (Daniel 9:24-27, NKJV)
      • Zechariah 12 and 14
      • But you are those who have continued with Me in My trials. “And I bestow upon you a kingdom, just as My Father bestowed [one] upon Me, “that you may eat and drink at My table in My kingdom, and sit on thrones judging the twelve tribes of Israel.” (Luke 22:28-30, NKJV)
      • Many other places.
    • There is a physical kingdom and a spiritual kingdom.
      • The Kingdom of God (Heaven) is where God rules whether an individual, country, or universe and beyond.
      • There is coming a time when God rules all earth and universe. Some will receive the just sentence because of their sin, while others God’s blessing for their obedience to the Gospel.
        • Then the seventh angel sounded: And there were loud voices in heaven, saying, “The kingdoms of this world have become [the kingdoms] of our Lord and of His Christ, and He shall reign forever and ever!” (Revelation 11:15, NKJV)
        • Now out of His mouth goes a sharp sword, that with it He should strike the nations. And He Himself will rule them with a rod of iron. He Himself treads the winepress of the fierceness and wrath of Almighty God. And He has on [His] robe and on His thigh a name written: KING OF KINGS AND LORD OF LORDS. (Revelation 19:15-16, NKJV)
        • Jesus answered and said to him, “Most assuredly, I say to you, unless one is born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.” (John 3:3, NKJV)
        • Then [comes] the end, when He delivers the kingdom to God the Father, when He puts an end to all rule and all authority and power. For He must reign till He has put all enemies under His feet. The last enemy [that] will be destroyed [is] death. (1 Corinthians 15:24-26, NKJV)
      • There was a change when the Lord Jesus began His ministry. “The law and the prophets [were] until John. Since that time the kingdom of God has been preached, and everyone is pressing into it. (Luke 16:16, NKJV)
  • Why did Jesus not give a date for the Kingdom to be restored to Israel?
    • It is none of our business. We should be concerned with preaching that kingdom and living that kingdom. “But of that day and hour no one knows, not even the angels of heaven, but My Father only. (Matthew 24:36, NKJV)
    • We are to be prepared. “Now learn this parable from the fig tree: When its branch has already become tender and puts forth leaves, you know that summer [is] near. “So you also, when you see all these things, know that it is near–at the doors! (Matthew 24:32-33, NKJV)
  • What kind of power does Jesus refer to in Acts 1:8?
  • What kind of witnesses are we to be?
    • Wilbur Pickering makes a textural comment and a interpretative comment: A very small minority of Greek manuscripts (perhaps 2%), of inferior quality, read ‘my witnesses’ instead of ‘witnesses to me’. To my mind, at least, there is a significant difference in meaning—to be a witness to Jesus involves being like Him (Matthew 10:25) and doing like Him (John 14:12).
    • We are to be these witnesses.
    • Does Jesus want everyone to hear this?
  • Did Jesus really go up into heaven? How do we know?
  • Who are the two men?
  • What is the promise given?
  • Why hasn’t that promise been fulfilled yet? Jesus will return to the same place that He left. And in that day His feet will stand on the Mount of Olives, Which faces Jerusalem on the east. And the Mount of Olives shall be split in two, From east to west, [Making] a very large valley; Half of the mountain shall move toward the north And half of it toward the south. (Zechariah 14:4, NKJV)
  • What was the hope and joy of the disciples? (And they worshiped Him, and returned to Jerusalem with great joy, (Luke 24:52, NKJV).
B11 Next week
  • He’s coming back
  • Theme: The King’s Return
  • Scriptures: Matthew 24:1-44