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Sunday, October 18, 2020

Noah..Only Eight..Escaped

First Published: February 21, 2019

". . .once the longsuffering of God waited in the days of Noah, 

while the ark
was a preparing,

Wherein
few,
that is,
eight souls
were saved
by water."
-1 Pet.3:20

Introduction...

The Lord Jesus Christ tells us that it will be like the days of Noah when He comes for His Bride 

... At that time ... 
only eight escaped.

But ... as Jesus describes how genuine believers will be taken, we begin to understand that the number "8" can represent a much larger number than literally "8"

... Since the number "8can also represent "infinity"... it becomes a picture of those destined for "infinity" as well ... not used strictly as a number to calulate a quantity.

Nevertheless ... by comparing "8" to the huge number of people left behind in the flood of Noah's day ... we are also led to consider that ... comparatively ... those escaping in the Rapture ... may not represent as large a group as some might presume.

In other words ... we can safely expect a greater number than "8"... but perhaps not the "millions" we have heard mentioned by some professing believers.

The following description regarding departure of the genuine believers ... also clearly reveals the requirements for departure ... which will definitely affect the size of the group that will actually be taken.

In ... Luke 17... Jesus reveals these requirements:

"And
as it was
in the days
of Noe,
so shall it
be also
in the days
of the Son of man."
-v.26

"Whosoever
shall seek
to save his life
shall lose it;
and whosoever
shall lose his life
shall preserve it.
-v.33

Much confusion has been generated by taking verse 33 out of context and attempting to make it apply to the topic of "fear" in general 

... to the point of some believing that self-preservation and self-defense are somehow forbidden by God.

However ... a careful study of the totality of the Word of God ... teaches otherwise.

So ... when we accurately keep it in the context of the days of Noah ... as it speaks of End Times 

... we see that "preserving one's life" is really referring to "compromising" our beliefs in order to continue to enjoy the benefits and pleasures of this world

...and...

... disregarding the Word of God to preserve our "life-style"... not wanting to suffer any hardships as a result of believing contrary to the system of this world ... therefore willing to participate in it's agenda.

Jesus gave this warning as a picture of separation ... not only to those who would be "taken" out of this world by the Rapture ... but also those "taken" after the Rapture ... when there is a time of godless chaos ... hell on earth breaks out ... and dead bodies will be found wherever "eagles"... "birds" of prey ... enemies of God ... hunt down those who have been left behind.

"Wheresoever the body is, thither will the eagles be gathered together."
(Luke 17:37)

...At that time those who try to save their life in this world ... will lose their eternal life

...and those who die for their faith in Christ ... will find eternal life.

I tell you,
in that night
there shall be
two men
in one bed;
the one shall be
taken,
and
the other
shall be left.
Two women
shall be
grinding together;
the one shall be
taken,
and
the other
left.

Two men
shall be
in the field;
the one shall be
taken,
and
the other
left."
-v.34-36

The Lord Jesus Christ is our "Ark" now ... some who by giving up their life in this world ... will preserve their life ... lifted up by the Water of the Word of God ... above the turbulent waters of this world ... to be taken to the Father's House ... but some will be left behind and lose their life ... in order to have eternal life.

"Therefore be ye also ready:
for in such
an hour as
ye think not
the Son of man
cometh."
(Matt.24:44)

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Thursday, October 15, 2020

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Monday, October 12, 2020

Rapture..Remembering...Lot's Wife




Genesis
Chapter 19



v.1
"And
there came two angels
to Sodom at even;
and

Lot sat in the gate
of Sodom:
and

Lot seeing them
rose up to meet them;
and

he bowed himself
with his face

toward the ground;

This very first verse concerning Lot's escape from Sodom ... reveals that the city of Sodom was destined to burn from the very beginning

... even before Lot chose to dwell in that place of looming destruction.  

We discover this through searching the Word, "Sodom"... in Strongs Concordance:

"Sodom"
[H5467]
= burning

Further study of the Words:
"burn ... burning ... burneth ... burned" 
reveal:

... Heathen burn sacrifices to idols /Baal
   (Jer.19:5 and elsewhere)

... Lust .."burned" one toward another in an unnatural way.
   (Rom. 1:27)

... Wrath of God burns .. destroys by fire
   (Ps. 89:46 .. elsewhere)

The Frog
   ... Principle


An interesting principle can be found ... in the correlation of the idols heathen folks worship ... and the judgments God brings upon them.

In the case of frogs:

     Frogs were worshiped in Egypt.

     ... Then ...

     Frogs were sent as judgment.

In the case of Sodom/"Burning":

     Burning lust/Baal worshipped

     ... Then ...

     Burning was sent as judgment.

                    Their 
              favorite sin
                = equals 
                their own
        judgment of choice

While all hardships in life are not judgments as a result of sin

... sin and judgments for sin ... are defined in detail in the Word of God ... the Holy Bible

...and unless there is true repentance and conversion to Christ ... all sin will ultimately be judged.

As in the case of Sodom ... God was no longer going to tolerate their sin ... so brought judgment and His wrath upon the land.

We can therefore surmise ... finding reference in the Scriptures ... that some judgments which come upon some lands are ... in fact ... a direct result to corresponding sins ... such as:

Disregard for God's Word .. (Water of the Word)
   = flooding water and
      tempestuous storms

Disregard for .. or misrepresenting the Holy Spirit (wind)
   = tornadoes and
      hurricanes

Theft
   = loss of own property

Murder
   = loss of life
      (self or loved ones)

Lust .."burning"
(unnatural desires)
   = being unloved
      .. unable to have a
          family
Extreme .. like Sodom
   = destructive fire sent
      from God

In the Evening...

It was "at even".. evening when the two angels came to Sodom .. where Lot was sitting at the gate.

"Even"
[H6153]
= "at sunset"

[H6150]
= "growing dark"

**This establishes a time-frame regarding Lot's departure .. escape from Sodom.**

...Lot meets the angels when it is just beginning to get dark.

v.2
"And 
he said,
Behold now, my lords, 
turn in, I pray you, into your servant's house, 
and
tarry all night, 
and
wash your feet, 
and
ye shall rise up early, 
and
go on your ways. 
And
they said, Nay; 
but
we will abide 
in the street
all night."

Lot offers the two angels (that appear to be men) accommodations in his home.

However ... these two angels were on a much greater mission than just finding a place to stay for the night.

They came to save Lot and his family from the wrath of God and total destruction.

But First ... the Test:



The angels had to test the condition of Lot's heart.

... So they respond to Lot's offer of respite in his home by saying:

..."No thanks ... we will be staying in the street all night."  

After all ... Lot was a resident of Sodom ... not exactly the most wholesome address in which to reside.

... So it was possible that some of "Sin City" could have influenced him.

... Maybe he was no longer worthy to escape the things that were about to come upon the earth

...Therefore ... Lot had to be tested. 

The Question ...

Was Lot going to be concerned for the welfare of these two men (angels) ... considering the immoral climate of this city?

... Or was he not going to be concerned ... because he had been accustomed to looking the other way

... or ... had possibly even participated in their sinful ways?

v.3
And

he pressed upon them greatly
and
they turned in
unto him, 
and
entered into
his house
and
he made them
a feast
and
did bake
unleavened bread, 
and
they did eat."

Lot successfully passes the test by insisting that they absolutely must stay in his home.

... So the angels agree to go with Lot.

When the angels get to Lot's home ... he prepares a feast for them ... bakes bread ... and they eat.

**All of this preparation of food ... baking ... and eating ... must have taken some time

... So here ... we are provided with another amount of time ... to work into the time-frame of Lot's escape.



v.4
"But before
they lay down
the men of the city, 
even the
men of Sodom
compassed
the house round, 
both old and young, 
all the people
from every quarter:"
v.5
"And
they called unto Lot, 
and
said unto him, 
Where are the men 
which came in
to thee this night? 
bring them out
unto us, 
that we may
know them."

**By now ... night has come:

But before the household could retire for the night ... the men ... young and old men ... from every part of Sodom

... surrounded Lot's house ... demanding Lot to send out the men (angels).

v.6
"And
Lot went out 
at the door
unto them, 
and
shut the door
after him..."
v.7
"And said,
I pray you, brethren, 
do not so wickedly."
v.8
"Behold now, 
I have two daughters 
which have not
known man
let me, I pray you, 
bring them out
unto you, 
and
do ye to them
as is good
in your eyes: 
only unto these men
do nothing; 
for therefore
came they 
under the shadow
of my roof."

The men of Sodom are launching an attack against the sanctity of the home of Lot.

Lot tries to reason with them ... even offers his two daughters ... tells these crazed men that he anticipated this attack.

This is the very reason he brought the two men (angels) into the safety of his home.

v.9
"And they said,
Stand back. 
And
they said again, 
This one fellow
came in to sojourn, 
and
he will needs be
a judge: 
now will we
deal worse with thee, 
than with them. 
And
they pressed sore 
upon the man,
even Lot, 
and
came near
to break the door."

The evil crowd continues to threaten Lot ... and becomes violent ... pushing Lot ... coming at the door ... intending to break it down.

v.10
"But
the men put forth
their hand, 
and
pulled Lot into
the house to them, 
and
shut to the door."
v.11
"And
they smote the men
that were at the door
of the house 
with blindness,
both small and great: 
so that they
wearied themselves 
to find the door."

The angels take charge ... coming to Lot's defense ... blinding the would-be intruders ... until they became weary ... trying to find the door.

v.12
"And
the men said
unto Lot, 
Hast thou here
any besides? 
son in law,
and
thy sons, 
and
thy daughters, 
and
whatsoever thou hast
in the city, 
bring them
out of this place:"
v.13
"For
we will destroy
this place
because
the cry of them 
is waxen great 
before the face
of the LORD; 
and
the LORD 
hath sent us
to destroy it."

Next ... the angels deliver the message God has given them to bring to Lot instructing him:

... to get his family together

... take them out of this place

... sudden destruction was imminent

... God had sent them to warn him.

v.14
"And Lot went out, 
and
spake unto his
sons in law, 
which married
his daughters, 
and said, 
Up, get you out
of this place; 
for the LORD
will destroy this city. 
But
he seemed as
one that mocked 
unto his sons in law."

Lot tries to alert his family to the coming danger and their need to depart.

He goes to His sons in law to inform them ... but what Lot is telling them is so far outside of their frame of reference

... they think he is "mocking"

... therefore they pay no attention to him ... don't take what he is saying seriously.

"mocking"
[H6711]
= making sport
= joking

v.15
"And when
the morning arose, 
then the angels
hastened Lot, 
saying, Arise, 
take thy wife, 
and
thy two daughters, 
which are here; 
lest thou be
consumed in
the iniquity
of the city."

***Now it is sunrise...

The angels increase pressure with another warning ... urge Lot to get up 

... tell him to gather his wife and two daughters

... or they will surely perish in this city of sin.



v.16
"And
while he lingered,
the men laid hold
upon his hand, 
and
upon the hand
of his wife, 
and
upon the hand
of his two daughters; 
the LORD
being merciful
unto him: 
and
they brought
him forth, 
and
set him without
the city."

Lot hesitates ... perhaps he is having difficulty processing the reality of the angels' description of this looming disaster ... himself.

So while Lot lingers ... the angels take action.

Time is Running out.

This is not a time to freeze in one's tracks ... with confusion and disbelief.

Because of God's mercy ... the angels take hold of Lot's wife and two daughters ... and bring them out of the city.

v.17
"And
it came to pass, 
when they
had brought them 
forth abroad, 
that he said, 
Escape for thy life; 
look not behind thee
neither stay thou 
in all the plain; 
escape to the mountain, 
lest thou be consumed."

Lot and his family were finally out of Sodom ... but not completely out of danger.

Now the angels tell them to quickly escape ... to run for their lives

... specifically ... not to look back ... not to stay in the area ... but to escape to the mountain

...or they would perish.

v.18
"And
Lot said unto them, 
Oh, not so, my Lord:
v.19
Behold now, 
thy servant
hath found grace
in thy sight, 
and
thou hast magnified
thy mercy
which thou
hast shewed 
unto me
in saving my life; 
and
I cannot escape 
to the mountain
lest some evil
take me, and I die:..."

Lot is a very fearful city dweller.

He begs for mercy and tries to bargain with the angels.

After all God has done to provide Lot's safe escape from Sodom ... and to save his life

... Lot is still afraid to "rough it" on the mountain ... to go into unfamiliar territory

... to step out in faith ... into an unknown environment trusting God to keep him safe.

v.20
"Behold now, 
this city is near
to flee unto, 
and
it is a little one: 
Oh, let me
escape thither, 
(is it not a little one?) 
and
my soul shall live.
v.21
And he said unto him, 
See, I have
accepted thee 
concerning
this thing also, 
that I will not
overthrow this city, 
for the which
thou hast spoken.
v.22
Haste thee,
escape thither; 
for I cannot
do any thing 
till thou
be come thither. 
Therefore
the name of the city 
was called Zoar.
v.23
The sun was risen 
upon the earth 
when Lot
entered into Zoar."

Processing Fear...

Interesting ... the angels do not deny the existence of this fearful situation ... or rebuke Lot for being fearful

... but grant Lot's request ... demonstrating the mercy of God ... in these very stressful circumstances

... they consider the human condition

... reminding us that faith and courage are God-given attributes ... but so are mercy and grace.

...remembering that fear must first be validated by confirming the reality of what is actually taking place 

... or by removing the source of fear

... before it can be correctly processed and successfully overcome.

Denying that a fearful situation exists ... only causes more fear ... in the end.

So Lot and his family escape to a city called "Zoar."

"Zoar"
[H6820]
= "insignificant" place

Lot is now content to leave a very sinful worldly place ... for an "insignificant"... very humble one.

It's morning ... when Lot enters Zoar ... and God's judgment is carried out.



v.24
"Then the LORD 
rained upon Sodom 
and
upon Gomorrah 
brimstone and fire 
from the LORD
out of heaven;
v.25
And
he overthrew 
those cities,
and all the plain,
and
all the inhabitants
of the cities, 
and
that which grew 
upon the ground."

God said it ... and it was done.

The wrath of God is poured out upon

... Sodom and Gomorrah

... all of the surrounding area

... destroying all of the inhabitants

...destroying all of the plants that grew in the land.



v.26
"But
his wife looked back 
from behind him, 
and
she became 
a pillar of salt." 

... BUT ... Lot's wife doesn't heed the warning of the Word of God ... which His angels had brought to them


... She does the very thing they were warned 

... NOT  TO  DO.

Lot's wife looks back to Sodom.

Her heart was not following the direction in which God was leading them

...God was taking them out of the sinful world in which they had lived.

But the heart of Lot's wife was not focused on where God was taking them

... but instead ... on the world she loved and the place she really longed to be.

Because of the condition of her heart

... she lost her life.

This historical event recorded in the Word of God ... clearly pictures the rapture of believers ... the Bride of Christ

...by means of escape ... departure. 

. . .BUT. . .
The moral 
of 
this true story
is found 
in the true condition 
of 
our own heart
. . .AND. . .
the warning Jesus gave 
to us all
when He said. . .


"Lay not up for yourselves
treasures
upon earth, 
where moth and rust
doth corrupt, 
and 
where thieves 
break through and steal:

But lay up for yourselves 
treasures
in heaven
where neither 
moth nor rust doth corrupt, 
and
where thieves 
do not break through
nor steal:

For where

your treasure is, 
there will 
your heart be also."
-Matthew 6:19-21

. . .And. . . 

"Remember Lot's Wife."
-Luke 17:32



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