Call-In Classic Christianity Radio – Bob George P618 (03-19-21)
An interesting topic of discussion among many believers is when the man of lawlessness will be revealed and the timing of the rapture, that event in history spoken of in 2 Thessalonians, where we will meet the Lord in the air. Certainly, people have different understanding of that, and maybe it is because all of it has not been revealed in regard to the details of these things. We know a rapture will occur, but the details are written down but not easily discerned. Do you recall what the Lord told Daniel, whom God revealed details concerning end time events?
8 I heard, but I did not understand. So I asked, “My lord, what will the outcome of all this be?”
9 He replied, “Go your way, Daniel, because the words are rolled up and sealed until the time of the end. 10 Many will be purified, made spotless and refined, but the wicked will continue to be wicked. None of the wicked will understand, but those who are wise will understand.
There are certain things that will not be revealed until the time of the end. The wise will understand, but the wicked will not.
Although it is desirable to understand these things in more detail, it is very important that we do not lose sight of living day by day in Christ, learning to depend on Him, in allowing Him to live His life in you and through you. Remember, the only thing that counts is faith expressing itself through love. Do not neglect loving your wife or reaching out to the lost as you are spending an increasing amount of time getting all bogged down in end time events.
It is good to know more about the New Covenant we live under today. Sadly, the book of Hebrews, which explains it so thoroughly, is hardly taught in churches today. Indeed, so many preachers, generation after generation, keep propagating false teaching, such as predestination, for example. As they teach it, God chooses who goes to heaven or hell, and speaks of this irresistible grace and other nonsense. Predestination, as used in the scripture, in Ephesians, is about the Jew and the Gentile predestined to be saved the same way, through faith in Christ Jesus. The context of Ephesians makes that very clear. The sovereignty of God is about God giving man the ability to choose life, and not all men will accept the life He offers, which is eternal life. But it is in the heart of God that none should perish, but all come to repentance, as we read in 2 Peter 3.
It is also helpful when reading the first four books of the New Testament to understand that Jesus was still living under an Old Covenant while speaking of the New to come. For the New Covenant was not started yet. As explained in Hebrews 9, a will, also a covenant and a testament, synonyms, does not go until effect until the one living who made the will dies. We all understand a natural will, where the will is read to those who will inherit your possessions after you die. But it does not go into effect until the one who made the will dies. So too with Christ Jesus. The New Covenant did not go into effect until He died and man received all that is Christ for the first time on the day of Pentecost, when, for the first time in history, the Spirit of God permanently indwelled men, to those who received the inheritance, eternal life, that God offered.
Ron from Huntington Beach, CA
Ron: According to 2 Thessalonians 2:1-3, verse 1, it talks about the coming of our Lord, gathering together to Him, which I take to be the rapture. Then verse 3 says to let no one deceive you in any way, for the rapture will not come until the apostasy occurs first and the man of lawlessness is revealed. Is this saying before the rapture, we will be able to identify the man of lawlessness, the beast?
2 Thessalonians 2:1-3
1 Concerning the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ and our being gathered to him, we ask you, brothers and sisters, 2 not to become easily unsettled or alarmed by the teaching allegedly from us – whether by a prophecy or by word of mouth or by letter – asserting that the day of the Lord has already come. 3 Don’t let anyone deceive you in any way, for that day will not come until the rebellion occurs and the man of lawlessness is revealed, the man doomed to destruction.
Bob: I think so. You have different viewpoints on that. We are all dealing with that seven year period, with the prophecy concerning that. Does the rapture occur in the beginning, the middle or the end? I tell people I do not care which way it occurs. I will be gone one way or another. I think you will see the man of rebellion being revealed. It talks about that fact and that he declares himself to be God.
Ron: Yes, in verse 4.
2 Thessalonians 2:4
4 He will oppose and will exalt himself over everything that is called God or is worshiped, so that he sets himself up in God’s temple, proclaiming himself to be God.
Bob: Yes, I think it all ties into the rapture and the fact that he will be revealed. Ron, I do not know. We just speculate on these things. There is one side of me, where you see the work of Satan so many times. In essence, it says, “Okay, the Messiah came through the Jewish line. I will bring antichrist also through the Jewish line”. You see a lot of times where that takes place. You got your people, the Jews, then you have those of the Sigmund Freud’s, totally of antichrist. I wonder if antichrist is going to be Jewish or out of the Arab community. I do not know. We will know when he appears and when we see him. I think the people of God will identify him.
Ron: Some people believe the rapture takes place before the start of the tribulation, and they say we will not be able to recognize or identify the antichrist.
Bob: If you are talking about tribulation. It comes at the end of that seven year period.
Ron: Before the last seven year period, do you believe there is a seventieth week of Daniel?
Bob: Yes, I do Ron. In studying that, especially as it relates to the accuracy of the sixty-nine weeks, which takes you from the time that Artaxerxes had given permission to Nehemiah to rebuild the temple walls until the coming of the Messiah. It brings it right down to the day of Jesus’ entry into Jerusalem. Because of the accuracy of that, I have to take that seventieth week and believe that is talking about the end times. I maybe wrong on it, but that is from my understanding that I have interpreted it up to this point.
Ron: I talked to a lot of these preachers, some on the radio, who are in the pre-tribulation camp, who say there is no event that must take place before the rapture or before the start of the tribulation. I just do not see it with these three verses here. It says clearly to me that we will identify the antichrist before the rapture. So I think there is that. There are other things to look for. In Revelation 13, it talks about a world government, a world economy and a world religion. I think these things have to be put together and we are going to see them being put together before that seventieth week and even before the rapture takes place.
Bob: As you well know, this subject, and because of the importance of it, every single cult, including Jim Jones and others, every one of them are around interpreting prophecy. Every single one of them. You have all kinds of divisions among churches over the interpretation of prophecy. Quite frankly, I do not think anyone knows prophecy until it is revealed. I don’t. The prophets of the Old Testament, they did not have a clue what they meant until Jesus came and revealed what they meant. We can talk about those things, but in the final analysis I am going to talk about them loosely. I will sit back and say we will know when it occurs. Meanwhile we have a life to live on earth, people to love, salvation to extend to the lost. So personally, I am just not going to get hung up on figuring out end times. Half the time I cannot figure out life I am living in right now.
Ron: So you do not emphasize prophecy, looking for things of the rapture and tribulation? You just focus on living life day by day.
Bob: I know it is going to occur, but all the details are all over the place. I know it is going to occur and when it occurs is fine with me.
Ron: Okay. Thank you, Bob.
Bob: It may be a cop out on my part, but to me, I have seen people so hung up on prophecy and they never get around to lead someone to Christ or going home loving their wife. They are just too busy trying to figure out end times. I have never been able to get into that. Your life right now is so important that Jesus tells us to live one day at a time. I am trying to learn how to walk in dependency on Jesus Christ today.
Ron: The Christian life is a balance. You cannot overemphasize one thing, doctrine of salvation or doctrine of eschatology. You cannot just focus on just one or two primary things and leave other things out. You have to deal with all of it. And live life. Ephesians 6 talks about putting on the full armor of God, but you cannot ignore certain doctrines.
Ron: I have sat in churches five, ten or fifteen years where the preacher never once talked about prophecy. So I think that is wrong. So there is a balance that is necessary.
Bob: Well, I appreciate your comment, Ron. God bless you, my friend.
Randy from Wall Pork, OR
Randy: I got a couple of questions. I will read through them real quick and then you can respond. My first question is this. I have dear friends, and we started talking about Bob George. I was explaining to them what your concept, which I believe is true, the New Covenant versus the Old Covenant. In particular, I addressed the four gospels. When Jesus was alive in those first four books of the New Testament, He was giving instructions for us to follow. I was trying to explain to them that Jesus was trying to show the inadequacy of the Old Covenant, of the Jewish religion, and He was there to point it out. It was not until the day of Pentecost that the New Covenant was formed and began to be obtained by man through the Holy Spirit.
Bob: I think you would be better off on that by using the ninth chapter of Hebrews, that no will, testament or covenant, goes into effect until the one who made it dies.
16 In the case of a will, it is necessary to prove the death of the one who made it, 17 because a will is in force only when somebody has died; it never takes effect while the one who made it is living. 18 This is why even the first covenant was not put into effect without blood. 19 When Moses had proclaimed every command of the law to all the people, he took the blood of calves, together with water, scarlet wool and branches of hyssop, and sprinkled the scroll and all the people. 20 He said, “This is the blood of the covenant, which God has commanded you to keep.”[Exodus 24:8] 21 In the same way, he sprinkled with the blood both the tabernacle and everything used in its ceremonies. 22 In fact, the law requires that nearly everything be cleansed with blood, and without the shedding of blood there is no forgiveness.
23 It was necessary, then, for the copies of the heavenly things to be purified with these sacrifices, but the heavenly things themselves with better sacrifices than these. 24 For Christ did not enter a sanctuary made with human hands that was only a copy of the true one; he entered heaven itself, now to appear for us in God’s presence. 25 Nor did he enter heaven to offer himself again and again, the way the high priest enters the Most Holy Place every year with blood that is not his own. 26 Otherwise Christ would have had to suffer many times since the creation of the world. But he has appeared once for all at the culmination of the ages to do away with sin by the sacrifice of himself. 27 Just as people are destined to die once, and after that to face judgment, 28 so Christ was sacrificed once to take away the sins of many; and he will appear a second time, not to bear sin, but to bring salvation to those who are waiting for him.
Bob: So the New Covenant went into effect at the death of Christ. Therefore, you can easily understand that it went into effect at the death of Christ, just as a person’s will you are talking to will not go into effect until he dies. Everybody understands that. That means Jesus taught under an Old Covenant, not under a New Covenant because He had not died yet. So teaching under an Old Covenant, He buried them. He showed them what pure righteousness was in His life, and in so doing, showed us our unrighteousness, which is the only thing that would prepare us for the cross. If He had not taught His righteousness, and in so doing, showing me my unrighteousness, I would not be prepared for the cross. So everything that Jesus taught in the gospels buried us. There is no way in the world we could hold up to that, to turn the other cheek when someone comes up and slaps the daylights out of you. Try that on for size. Try being perfect for size. So that was Him. This is what perfection is, but it is in Christ. It is not in you. That is what prepares us for the New Covenant. But the New Covenant actually went into effect at the death of Christ and was activated on the day of Pentecost into our lives.
Randy: I did not place it in your words. I short-circuited it. Yes. What I am trying to do is to get them away from their church’s delivery of having to go up and ask for forgiveness and all the things that churches are fostering. It is so difficult because they are very good people and believe so strongly into their teaching that they receive from their church. I am trying to give them something. In the 9th chapter of Hebrews, I should have thought of that.
Randy: But, I appreciate it, brother. It is good to talk with you and I should have thought of Hebrews. I know that is the foundation for most of everything you teach.
Bob: Well, it is really an explanation of the New Covenant going into effect, which is in Hebrews. That is why most people miss it. Hebrews is seldom taught in churches today because it is not understood.
Randy: Right. I have heard people explain to me that because we do not know who the exact author of it was that it may not be accepted for that reason. I cannot see that. It was part of the bible.
Bob: The early apostles didn’t feel that way or it would not be in the scriptures. That is an indicator that if a person does not understand Hebrews, they would not be making that statement.
Randy: Sure. I understand that. Thank you for your response there. Easy one for you to see, but for me I struggle and struggle to find something to tell them. That is all I got to tell them is the 9th chapter of Hebrews.
Bob: A will is not anything new and a will does not go into effect until the one who made it dies. It never goes into effect while the one who made it is living. Therefore, the New Covenant could not have gone into effect until the death of Christ. So the gospels are a record of His life here on earth, and that was in the Old Covenant and not the New.
Randy: Okay. Thank you, brother.
Bob: Thank you, Randy. God bless you, pal.
Pat from Atlanta, GA
Pat: I have been studying the last couple of days on the subject of predestination. I have got so many questions about this. It would take your entire show to answer all the questions I have about this. I am not sure if I am completely understanding it. People who believe in this are saying that God has to choose me, but I do not have the ability to choose Him. That He has to choose me. If that is true, if I am just as much a sinner as my next door neighbor, why would God choose me and not necessarily choose him?
Bob: That is the nonsensical theology that it is. Predestination, Pat, we can explain very easily. In the book of Ephesians, you will see that predestination is dealing with the Jew and the Gentile. We are chosen and He predestined us to be adopted as sons through Christ Jesus. That is the Jew,. And in Him, we, the Gentile also have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins.
4 For he chose us in him before the creation of the world to be holy and blameless in his sight. In love 5 he predestined us for adoption to sonship through Jesus Christ, in accordance with his pleasure and will – 6 to the praise of his glorious grace, which he has freely given us in the One he loves. 7 In him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, in accordance with the riches of God’s grace 8 that he lavished on us.
Bob: If you will go through those passages. Look at Ephesians 1:11, for example.
11 In him we [Gentiles] were also chosen, having been predestined according to the plan of him who works out everything in conformity with the purpose of his will, 12 in order that we [Jews], who were the first to put our hope in Christ, might be for the praise of his glory. 13 And you [Gentiles] also were included in Christ when you heard the message of truth, the gospel of your salvation. When you believed, you were marked in him with a seal, the promised Holy Spirit, 14 who is a deposit guaranteeing our inheritance until the redemption of those who are God’s possession – to the praise of his glory.
Bob: It is talking about the Jew and the Gentile. You remember in Ephesians 2:11/
11 Therefore, remember that formerly you who are Gentiles by birth and called “uncircumcised” by those who call themselves “the circumcision” (which is done in the body by human hands) – 12 remember that at that time you were separate from Christ, excluded from citizenship in Israel and foreigners to the covenants of the promise, without hope and without God in the world. 13 But now in Christ Jesus you who once were far away have been brought near by the blood of Christ.
14 For he himself is our peace, who has made the two groups one
Bob: Who are the two? Jew and Gentile.
and has destroyed the barrier, the dividing wall of hostility, 15 by setting aside in his flesh the law with its commands and regulations. His purpose was to create in himself one new humanity out of the two thus making peace,
Bob: Who are the two? Jew and Gentile. What is the one new man? The Eklesia, called the church. His purpose in doing this is making this one new man called the Eklesia, both out of the converted Jews and Gentiles. His purpose was to create one new man out of the two, thus making peace.
16 and in one body to reconcile both of them to God through the cross, by which he put to death their hostility. 17 He came and preached peace to you who were far away [Gentile] and peace to those who were near [Jew]. 18 For through him we both have access to the Father by one Spirit.
19 Consequently, you are no longer foreigners and strangers, but fellow citizens with God’s people and also members of his household, 20 built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, with Christ Jesus himself as the chief cornerstone. 21 In him the whole building is joined together and rises to become a holy temple in the Lord. 22 And in him you too are being built together to become a dwelling in which God lives by his Spirit.
Bob: It goes ahead to talk about this mystery. This was a mystery held in the heart of God, talked about in the 1st chapter in regard to predestination and election.
4 In reading this, then, you will be able to understand my insight into the mystery of Christ, 5 which was not made known to people in other generations as it has now been revealed by the Spirit to God’s holy apostles and prophets. 6 This mystery is that through the gospel the Gentiles are heirs together with Israel, members together of one body, and sharers together in the promise in Christ Jesus.
Bob: Look also at Ephesians 4.
1 As a prisoner for the Lord, then, I urge you to live a life worthy of the calling you have received. 2 Be completely humble and gentle; be patient, bearing with one another in love. 3 Make every effort to keep the unity of the Spirit through the bond of peace. 4 There is one body and one Spirit, just as you were called to one hope when you were called;
Bob: There is one body, not a Jew body and a Gentile body. One body. You have one Spirit. You do not have a Jew Spirit and a Gentile Spirit. There is one Lord, not a Jew Lord and a Gentile Lord.
5 one Lord, one faith, one baptism; 6 one God and Father of all, who is over all and through all and in all.
Bob: That is the story of predestination. The Gentiles were predestined to salvation the same way as a Jew, which God pulled off when He went to the cross to die for both Jews and Gentiles and was raised from the dead to give life to whosoever wills, both Jews and Gentiles.
Pat: I see. Okay
Bob: That is all predestination is. This other thing is idiotic theology, that God just chooses who He wants to. So you have got a God who is literally going to send man to hell because God did not like him or God did not choose him. That is nonsense. It is nonsense that we do not have a will. They take the sovereignty of God and stretch it to mean something that it does not mean. The Sovereignty of God is that God gave man a will to choose. That is the sovereignty of God. When God made man, He made man with the ability to choose. They deny that. They say His will is irresistable. If His will is irresistable, then why would it say in scripture that it is not God’s will that none should perish, knowing full well they don’t? They say the none only means the non-elect. It is absolutely nonsensical theology.
14 In the same way your Father in heaven is not willing that any of these little ones should perish.
2 Peter 3:9
9 The Lord is not slow in keeping his promise, as some understand slowness. Instead he is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance.
Pat: I heard that very teaching. That the all was spoken of in 2 Peter, that God was wishing all would come to repentance and none perish, and that that all is talking about the elect.
Bob: Yes. It is absolutely nonsense to me.
Pat: I see. Thanks a lot, Bob .
Bob: You are sure welcome, brother. I hope that helps.
Pat: It sure did. Thanks a lot.
Delores from Sandia, TX
Delores: Thank you for taking my call. I have a question. I was raised with ritual-like witchcraft. If I had a nickel for every time she took me to every kind of psychiatrist and doctors but nobody knew my problem but I did. I had an emotional problem that happened to me when I was young. Now I am studying the bible for over ten years. I get questions from people who call me, and they call me at all times of the day and night. They say they have a hex. What do I tell them to give them a correct answer? The hispanics seem to believe a lot of that, about someone putting a hex on you. I just tell them to rebuke it in the name of Jesus.
Bob: Again, Delores, to say to rebuke that, you cannot rebuke that which does not exist. I believe you just ignore it.
Delores: I am known here in Orange Grove. I have a little chapel my husband built, but not to be a pastor.
Bob: Yes, you told me that.
Delores: They call for questions, and sometimes I want to give them the correct answer. The majority of these people will say, “Oh, that woman has a hex on me.” That is why I am having all these problems.
Bob: If that is not true, what do you tell a person?
Delores: You tell them it is not true. That is what I do.
Bob: So that is what you do. You stick with the truth. The problem with people that are thinking that are probably people who do not know the Lord at all. So you have to realize these questions are from people who are bogged down in tradition and mysticism. And you have to get beyond those two things. “So let us go to find out if you know the one who knows the answer to that question. Because if you are just asking me, that could be an opinion. Let me tell you about the one who knows the answer to that question, and his name is Jesus.” Try to get them to the gospel and get them to come to Christ. When they do, then they are indwelt by God and then are able for the first time in their life to understand spiritual truth.
1 Corinthians 2:14
14 The person without the Spirit does not accept the things that come from the Spirit of God but considers them foolishness, and cannot understand them because they are discerned only through the Spirit.
Delores: I do arts and crafts and go to flee markets. That gives me the ability to talk to lots of people. A lot of people do not like to hear religion. I tell them I do not practice religion. A person saw my church and my little display, and he said “I hate churches. I hate religion“. I reply, “I hate religion too. Are you an atheist?” He replies. “Do you know what I call Christians? SOBs.” I did not want to discuss it because I did not want to get into an argument. He must have had a bad experience with religion.
Bob: Obviously he has. I would say this. “You are not telling me the truth. There is nothing about Jesus to not like. I do not think it is Jesus you do not like. Evidently someone in religion has turned you off. I do not like religion either.” You are giving him the right answers.
Delores: The question I ask them when they come to me. “Can I ask you a question? What are these?” Well, there are two types of people, one that is a born again Christian and one that is about to be. Most of these people do not even know what born again is. The Catholics do not know what it is. I tell them to repeat after me after giving them scriptures about Nicodemus, and then give them a bible to help them understand the bible. I am not saying I am any better than them. I was lost too.
Bob: You keep doing what you are doing, Delores. Sounds to me you are right on. You are in a situation where people are coming to you with questions, and God tells you to be willing to give them the reason for the hope within you. And you are doing that. You are doing what God asks you incidentally to do. That is what God asks each and every one of us to do. We appreciate what you are doing, Delores.
1 Peter 3:15-16
15 But in your hearts revere Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect, 16 keeping a clear conscience, so that those who speak maliciously against your good behavior in Christ may be ashamed of their slander.
Delores: You helped me a lot because I needed some answers. There are a lot of different churches and they do not practice what they preach.
Bob: Yes. Yes.
Delores: I am glad for your ministry. I do not want to be calling all the time because I have so many questions. I appreciate all your help.
Bob: You are sure welcome, Delores. You call any time.
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