Saturday, February 15, 2020

The Enigma of Time

In the first two chapters of the Bible, the very first chapter of Genesis states that all of creation took place in six days and on the seventh day the Creator rested. 
“And on the seventh day God finished his work which he had done, and he rested on the seventh day from all his work which he had done. So God blessed the seventh day and hallowed it, because on it God rested from all his work which he had done in creation.” (Genesis 2: 2-3)

Six days, and from these verses sprung some of the most prideful and contentious arguments in recent history. Bible expositors we’ll refer to as “The Creationists” believe in six literal days referring to the twenty four hour period of daylight and darkness. It is entirely possible that Almighty God could have created everything over six twenty four hour periods, however the following passage was specifically intended to clarify the cycle of the rising and setting of the sun.

“And God said, “Let there be light”; and there was light. And God saw that the light was good; and God separated the light from the darkness. God called the light Day, and the darkness he called Night. And there was evening and there was morning, one day.” (Genesis 1: 3-5)

On the other hand those who disbelieve the biblical narrative and who we will refer to as “The Evolutionists,” contend that it all evolved over a period of millions and maybe trillions of years and that what are now know as human beings initially sprung from a single celled life form that emerged from a primordial sludge pond. Some of what they say makes sense as we know for certain there has been an evolutionary process involved in the creation. 

Almighty God the Creator of heaven and earth is eternal and exists beyond the confines of time, there is no past and no future beyond the fourth dimension only the eternal present. It’s difficult for humans to wrap finite minds around infinity, however all lives are governed by time, a beginning and an end to life and all living things. It was not always so, but the confines of time entered the world as sin and death at the fall of man in the Garden of Eden. In the following passage Peter, the Apostle of Christ brought to mind that God is an infinite being which is intended to indicate that God is infinite and His days and years are immeasurable in human terms.

But do not ignore this one fact, beloved, that with the Lord one day is as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day. (2Peter 3: 8)

The six days of creation were more than likely completed over a period of tens of thousands of years years humanly speaking. Thus we have a convergence in both the Biblical version of creation and the evolutionary theory of the origin of the world and of all life, fostered by the finite and often times contentious and obtuse minds of man. But that is not all there is to the story and how mankind became a captive of time or of the means used by the Creator to remedy man’s problem.

“The Lord God formed man of dust from the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living being. And the Lord God planted a garden in Eden, in the east; and there he put the man whom he had formed. And out of the ground the Lord God made to grow every tree that is pleasant to the sight and good for food, the tree of life also in the midst of the garden, and the tree of the knowledge of good and evil.” (Genesis 2: 7- 9)

“Now the serpent was more subtle than any other wild creature that the Lord God had made. He said to the woman, “Did God say, ‘You shall not eat of any tree of the garden’?” And the woman said to the serpent, “We may eat of the fruit of the trees of the garden; but God said, ‘You shall not eat of the fruit of the tree which is in the midst of the garden, neither shall you touch it, lest you die.’” But the serpent said to the woman, “You will not die. For God knows that when you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.” So when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was a delight to the eyes, and that the tree was to be desired to make one wise, she took of its fruit and ate; and she also gave some to her husband, and he ate.” (Genesis 3: 1- 6)

God created Adam and Eve the original man and woman immortal but they listened to the voice of Satan and failed to follow the Lord’s simple command and sin and death entered the world, they were expelled from the Garden and relegated to the confines of a world governed by time where they eventually died. There is much to be read about in previous commentaries concerning all that transpired and how God remedied mankind’s problem and provided a means of redemption through the death and resurrection of Christ which occurred over two thousand years ago.

“But what God foretold by the mouth of all the prophets, that his Christ should suffer, he thus fulfilled. Repent therefore, and turn again, that your sins may be blotted out, that times of refreshing may come from the presence of the Lord.” (Acts 3: 18-19)

“If you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For with the heart one believes and is justified, and with the mouth one confesses and is saved. For the Scripture says, ‘Everyone who believes in him will not be put to shame.’ For there is no distinction between Jew and Greek; for the same Lord is Lord of all, bestowing his riches on all who call on him. For ‘everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.’ (Romans 10:9-13)

“First of all you must understand this, that scoffers will come in the last days with scoffing, following their own passions and saying, “Where is the promise of his coming? For ever since the fathers fell asleep, all things have continued as they were from the beginning of creation. The Lord is not slow about his promise as some count slowness, but is forbearing toward you, not wishing that any should perish, but that all should reach repentance. ” (2 Peter 3: 3 -4 & 9) 

“And on the seventh day God finished his work which he had done, and he rested on the seventh day from all his work which he had done.” (Genesis 2:2)

The seventh day will arrive when God himself returns and sets up His kingdom on earth.

Saturday, February 8, 2020

The Midst Of A Storm

All of humanity is living in a time of great strife and struggle. A monumental battle is ongoing in many of the nations of the world today for the minds, hearts and souls of their respective populations. A battle for control by forces of good against evil and freedom as opposed to oppression. Corrupt political powers striving to assert control through all manner of cunning lies and deceit  contending for the approval of a populace unaware of the nefarious intentions of the end game, total control and domination. Marxist socialism has raised it’s ugly head in nations where free enterprise has prospered. Democrat Progressives versus Conservative Republicans struggle on one hand as Islamic Jihadists murder Jews and Christians in an attempt to conquer the world and assert their demonic beliefs on others. We are living in troubling times!
The apostle John was banished by Rome to the Greek Isle of Patmos for preaching the word of God and the testimony of Jesus when the risen Christ appeared to him and said; “I am the Alpha and the Omega,” says the Lord God, who is and who was and who is to come, the Almighty. John was then given revelations concerning future events, this is allegorically written and but a part that which speaks of what is currently happening:

Now war arose in heaven, Michael and his angels fighting against the dragon; and the dragon and his angels fought, but they were defeated and there was no longer any place for them in heaven. And the great dragon was thrown down, that ancient serpent, who is called the Devil and Satan, the deceiver of the whole world he was thrown down to the earth, and his angels were thrown down with him. And I heard a loud voice in heaven, saying, “Now the salvation and the power and the kingdom of our God and the authority of his Christ have come, for the accuser of our brethren has been thrown down, who accuses them day and night before our God. And they have conquered him by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony, for they loved not their lives even unto death. Rejoice then, O heaven and you that dwell therein! But woe to you, O earth and sea, for the devil has come down to you in great wrath, because he knows that his time is short!” (Revelation 12:7-12)

Jesus ransomed the world positionally by means of His death and resurrection and will claim it and all who call on Him as Lord and Savior at the time of His return. Meanwhile it has been the will of God to let Satan and his demons remain until that time to test mankind with a choice of either serving Satan through sin and death or of serving the Lord by receiving salvation and eternal life. As this becomes clear to us, we begin to understand the underlying reasons for all that is going on in the world around us today. It can be extremely overwhelming if we focus on all of the horrific world events each day, the following two events on storm tossed waters gives us an example on how to deal with the stress of life and where to set our focus.

And when he (Jesus) got into the boat, his disciples followed him. And behold, there arose a great storm on the sea, so that the boat was being swamped by the waves; but he was asleep. And they went and woke him, saying, “Save, Lord; we are perishing.” And he said to them, “Why are you afraid, O men of little faith?” Then he rose and rebuked the winds and the sea; and there was a great calm. And the men marveled, saying, “What sort of man is this, that even winds and sea obey him?” (Matthew 8:23-27)

And yet at another time after a day of preaching to a large crowd…

Then he made the disciples get into the boat and go before him to the other side, while he dismissed the crowds. And after he had dismissed the crowds, he went up on the mountain by himself to pray. When evening came, he was there alone, but the boat by this time was many furlongs distant from the land, beaten by the waves; for the wind was against them. And in the fourth watch of the night he came to them, walking on the sea. But when the disciples saw him walking on the sea, they were terrified, saying, “It is a ghost!” and they cried out for fear. But immediately he spoke to them, saying, “Take heart, it is I; have no fear.” And Peter answered him, “Lord, if it is you, bid me come to you on the water.” He said, “Come.” So Peter got out of the boat and walked on the water and came to Jesus; but when he saw the wind, he was afraid, and beginning to sink he cried out, “Lord, save me.” Jesus immediately reached out his hand and caught him, saying to him, “O man of little faith, why did you doubt?” And when they got into the boat, the wind ceased. And those in the boat worshiped him, saying, “Truly you are the Son of God.” (Matthew 14:27-33)

There in those two remarkable passages we have the answer to all our anxiety, doubts and fears. Instead of focusing continually on the storm set your focus on Jesus, acknowledge Jesus as Savior and Lord, and repent, that is turn away from that which causes you to sin and cling to Jesus because all of our future lives depend on it. 

“For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but in order that the world might be saved through him. (John 3:16-17)

But to all who did receive him, who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God, (John 1:12)