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BIBLE STUDY: Truths and Lies About The Bible (Part 2)

“It is impossible to mentally or socially enslave a Bible-reading people. The principles of the Bible are the groundwork of human freedom.” – Horace Greeley, Editor of the New York Tribune (America’s most influential newspaper from the 1840s to the 1870s) 

We are continuing today from Part 1 of this study, which is available at http://www.onug.us/content/bible-study-truths-and-lies-about-bible-part-1

Welcome back! If you missed last week’s study, feel free to “catch up” on what we covered, by visiting the above link (or go to www.onug.us) and download the first half of this study. In it we examined how it was possible, for so many people to get so far off track in their beliefs, about some very basic Biblical Truths.

The greater part of modern Christianity (with more than 300,000 churches and 217 main denominations in America), has twisted, perverted, or ignores many of the scriptures we examined last week. We shall see the same is true for the scriptures we will ask God to clarify for us today. Rediscovery of God’s Truth is best accomplished by examining the easiest to understand Bible verses first; once we have proven their clear intent and meaning, we can safely proceed on to more complex scriptures dealing with the same subject.

Let’s begin with one of the biggest lies, most Christians have come to believe – simply because they never took the time to prove whether it was true or not, from the pages of their Bibles.

Lie # 1: When I Die (As A Christian) I Will Immediately Ascend Up To Heaven And Be With God and Jesus Forever!

I have seen this statement or a variation of it, in many, many “Gospel” tracks; and it is also frequently found in the Statement of Beliefs for many churches throughout America. Sometimes, it is also accompanied by a scripture like John 3:16 or 1 Thessalonians 4:16-17. But do these scriptures really promise us an eternity in the Third Heaven, with God and Jesus Christ, upon the physical death of a Believer?

The answer is, No, they do not. You can try to twist them to say that, but you would just be fulfilling Peter’s warning to us not to be led away with your error (see 2 Peter 3:13-18). The Truth of God is just the opposite, and in fact is a much better deal for Christians than what this lie promises!

The Reward of The Saved Is NOT To Ascend Up Into Heaven. In Fact, We Never Will!

The proof comes from the Words of Jesus Christ, Himself. Let us read a scripture we almost never hear read aloud in most churches today: John 3:13! When Jesus Christ says “No Man” that is exactly what He means! No person who was ever a human upon the earth - is in heaven, except the very same Jesus who came from heaven!

What I find absolutely amazing about this, is that so many “Christians” who can recite John 3:16 by memory, don’t have a clue that verse 13 even exists! Now let’s put John 3:13 in context. Let’s read John 3:9-12. Jesus is chastising Nicodemus [who was a Pharisee, a ruler of the Jews, a master of Israel (see verses 1 & 2)] for not understanding the Plan of God which Jesus was explaining to him. Then Jesus tells Nicodemus because he has rejected the explanation and knowledge of earthly things, Nicodemus would also reject the knowledge of heavenly things if they were also explained to him (:12).  To prove His point, Christ then recites John 3:13, (or tells Nicodemus about a heavenly thing) forever clarifying to every human being born since, “that NO ONE is going to heaven”!!! Yet countless millions of professing Christians (and their ministers) fulfill Christ’s prophecy by still continuing to NOT BELIEVE the very Words of Jesus Christ! Amazing Indeed!

God clearly tells us in the Bible that His people will inherit the earth (not heaven), and keep it as an everlasting (never-ending, forever) possession. Let’s also look at Matthew 5:5 / Genesis 17:7-9. Because Satan has truly deceived the whole world, most Christians today, are totally confused about where God says they will spend eternity.

How Most People Get Off-Track With Biblical Truth:

The reason, beyond Satan’s initial deception (2 Corinthians 4:4), is that most people start off with “hard to understand” verses of scripture; instead of beginning their study with easy to understand verses like John 3:13 / Matthew 5:5 & Genesis 17:7-9. Starting off any Bible Study, on any subject, by first reading the difficult to understand verses is foolish. This can cause scriptural confusion, which shrewd & deceptive ministers (the Bible and Jesus said they are out there!) can use to get you off- track, and keep you off- track; especially if you are not reading the verses for yourself. You must prove for yourself that each verse means what you are being told it means; before you go on to understand the next concept in your study of God’s Word! So many people today, read books about the Bible – to understand the Bible; instead of reading just the 66 books that make up the Bible! God will never let those He is calling, and trying to reach, be devoid of the understanding of His Word (John 14:16, 15:26, 16:7)!

Remember, the Bible (according to God) was written in such a way as to keep all people, except those God Himself chose to understand it; from understanding what they actually read (Matthew 11:25, 13:34-35 / Luke 10:21 / Mark 4:11-12)! Only those who have God’s Holy Spirit will understand God’s Word (John 16:13 / Acts 5:32)!

Most Christians do not study their Bibles. They are not intimate with God’s Word. They rely on what others tell them about the Bible, instead of seeing it and hearing it for themselves. We need to live the Bible! It needs to be our instruction manual in every situation (2 Timothy 2:15).

Where The Desire To “Go To Heaven” Really Came From:

Could the fallen angel, Satan, who fell from heaven like lightning (Luke 10:18), and who God says will make a second attempt to overthrow the throne of God in Heaven - in the last days before Christ returns (Revelation 12:1-17); could he be the source of this false doctrine? Let’s look again at what the Bible teaches about Satan’s deception of the church:

 -What did Jesus & The Bible say about false gospels and false teachers (Matthew 7:15, 24:4-5, 11, 24/ Galatians 1:8-9)?

-What did Jesus say about false churches (Matthew 15:8-9/ 6:5)?

Jesus says that one can worship Him, to no purpose – uselessly, if the doctrines on which that worship is based, have as their source man's (or Satan’s) erroneous ideas about how to interpret Scripture, rather than on the plain, intended teaching of God’s Word!

According to Scripture, many of the people who go to “church” today, those who even confess the name of “Jesus”; will be rejected by Christ at His return, because they believed and followed a false doctrine about Jesus (Luke 13:24-29 / Matthew 7:21-24).

Truth # 9: The Reward of The Saved Is Eternal Life On The Earth – For All Eternity. Even God the Father, Will Come Down From Heaven And Eventually Join Us, Here On Earth!

Not many people, in recent years, have been told this Truth in “church”! Let’s see what the Bible says:

Paul tells us not to be ignorant on this very subject (1 Thessalonians 4:13-18). Paul is telling us that God’s plan for our eternity is so much better than Satan’s lies for our future! Unlike Satan’s lies, we can prove God’s Truth from the pages of our own Bible! Paul even tells us we should be “encouraging one another” with his words – instead of teaching people to believe Satan’s warped fantasy that we go to heaven when we die!

According to the Bible, all humans, even the saints of God, wait in their graves until the return of Jesus Christ. Only then will those who died in Jesus Christ, be made alive and caught up to meet Him in the clouds (1 Corinthians 15:20-23). It is only at the Second Coming of Christ, that the saints will be resurrected from the dead, in the first resurrection. They will be kings and priests of God, and rule with Jesus, on this earth for 1,000 years! All the rest of mankind, who has died since the time of Adam; will have to wait until the end of this 1,000 year time period before they will be resurrected from the dead too (Revelation 20:1-6). When countless Billions upon Billions come back to life in the second resurrection, have the books of the Bible open to them with understanding, and eventually receive eternal life too; God the Father will bring His Holy City from heaven to “earth”, and God will dwell with men – on the earth forever (Revelation 21:1-8)!

TRUTH # 10: The Gospel Or “Good News” That Jesus Came To Deliver Was Not About Himself! The Gospel That Christ Preached Was That The Kingdom Of God, Was Coming To Earth!

Jesus told us what “Gospel” he came to preach (Mark 1:14-15). He said from that moment on, the Good News that the Government of God would arrival on earth, would be preached THROUGHOUT THE WORLD; and that His followers needed to 1) REPENT and 2) BELIEVE THAT GOSPEL!

Strong’s Concordance defines “Gospel” :

“to announce good news, declare, or bring glad tidings…”

Today we have invented many other gospels; gospels “about” Jesus (the messenger – instead of His message), gospels about healing, salvation, or grace. As a result, most Christians do not know Christ came to proclaim the glad tidings that God’s government or God’s Kingdom would be coming to this earth – in its entirety, to restore all things, and that it would last forever! Jesus did not come to speak about Himself (John 7:16, 18)

Most Christians today, have been deceived into believing “they are permanently saved”. That all they have to do is “accept Jesus as their Savior”, He will then come into their hearts, and when they die, they will float up to heaven to live with Jesus in the clouds forever (Revelation 3:11 / Song of Solomon 5:7 )! The Bible is clear we will not become the Saints of the Most High God, if we do not serve and obey Him (Daniel 7:27 / Revelation 14:12). Today’s wrong focus on “Christ as the gospel”, is not supported by any of the 101 times the word “gospel” appears throughout the Bible!

Gospel = The Good News of the Coming Kingdom or Government of God. Christ was the messenger, NOT the message! He is our Savior, but he is not the focus of the message Jesus brought to this earth. He will be King of Kings – ruling until He gives the entire world, submitted to Him, to God the Father (1 Corinthians 15:22-26).

Because many churches and their Pastors have taught believers in Christ another gospel, a gospel about Jesus, that they are permanently saved once they confess Christ, that the Law was done away with; many, many go about their “Christian lives” putting their cares and their wants in the forefront of their lives, in the place that only God and His Word should occupy for a true follower of Jesus Christ (1 Corinthians 10:14 / 1 John 5:21 / Revelation 2:14, 20). Remember, an idol is anything that substitutes for God, His Word, His Ways. An Idol is anything that keeps us from obeying God or keeping His Commandments (1 John 2:4 / Leviticus 19:3).

God is warning His people today, to come out of false religious systems that carry the “Jesus label”, so that we do not partake in the Wrath of God that will surely come upon those who practice such things (Revelation 18:1-6). !

Truth # 11: God has called Christians Today, To Be In Training For A New And Much Different Government.

Babylon means confusion. God’s people should not be confused about God’s Plan, or His Government’s way of doing things. We should be practicing now for the leadership roles we will have in His soon coming Kingdom (2 Corinthians 6:17).

Jesus knew we would have to be in this world, but He did not want us to be of this world (John 17:15-17)! It is the Truth, God’s Truth, which “sanctifies” Christians from the world around them. God’s Word is Truth, yet so many “Christians” do not obey His Words today! True Christians must abandon this world’s values, ideas, and philosophies and leave them behind! We must practice the Truth, the whole Truth and leave nothing out; NOT popular and unscriptural beliefs… or we will be held accountable by an Almighty Righteous God!

Truth # 12: Jesus Christ is the God of both the Old and New Testaments!!!

God did not have a Plan A, then replace it with Plan B when it failed!!! What God began in the Old Testament, He is finishing in the New. Jesus Christ was the God who thundered down from Mount Sinai (1 Corinthians 10:3-4)!!! In both the Old and New Testaments we can plainly see that God does not change (Malachi 3:6 / Hebrews 13:8)! New Testament teachings reflect the Old Testament teachings! Praise God! The Ten Commandments and God’s Law are still binding on Christians today, but only those called by God will see this!

When we really examine biblical doctrines such as, “what happens when we die?”, “what is sin?”, “what is the True Gospel?”, and so many others, we see that the New Testament is in complete agreement with the Old!!!

If the scriptures we have looked at so far, were not ignored or twisted by many today; they would point to the True God of the Bible, and lead many to see that the primary purpose of the New Testament is the establishment and building of God’s True Church, preparing it for the arrival of Jesus Christ to this earth (Matthew 16:18)! Notice, God builds His True Church (singular); not the varied assortments of every flavor of religion which we see today in our “Christian” world. Today “you” can pick “your” church; with the building style, music, times, and days of worship that suit you and your idea of what “church” is. God calls (or picks) those he wants to be in His church (John 6:44)! Your job is to seek out and find a church (body of believers) that God put together, to find His Church! It is only there you will receive true spiritual nourishment, grow in Godly Character, and begin to understand basic Bible verses and Truths. God Built His Church (body of believers) to carry out His Commission (Matthew 28:18-20 / Mark 16:15-20).

Truth # 13 : Jesus Christ is Lord of The Sabbath Day!

Jesus as the God of the Old Testament set one day a week as Holy time to Him(Mark 2:27-28)!!! The Sabbath was made to be a blessing to all of mankind, and Jesus was LORD of that day!

Is Sunday, the day of the Lord? Main stream Christianity thinks it is, and has for over 1600 years! What does the Bible say?  Did Jesus change the day He is LORD over, to another day?

We have some great articles on our website that deals with this topic in detail: Remember The Sabbath Day, To Keep It Holy and Do You Have The Sign Of God? at www.onug.us.

Jesus was the God of the Old Testament, and the Creator of ALL things (Colossians 1:16). It was Jesus that sanctified the Sabbath Day and made it HOLY (Genesis 2:2-3). Jesus is LORD of the Sabbath because He created it and set it apart as Holy. No other verse in the entire Bible even hints that Jesus ever changed this day, or ever became LORD of Sunday!

Matthew 12 (a parallel account of Mark 2) only shows it was lawful to “eat” , or satisfy hunger, on the Sabbath day. Jesus never did away with the Sabbath (1 Samuel 21:1-6)! The Pharisees concocted all kinds of man-made regulations for man on the Sabbath day. It was these man-made regulations that Jesus was condemning, NOT the Sabbath day itself! Today, misguided religious leaders, instead of loading up the Sabbath day with artificial regulations like the Pharisees did; have totally abandoned the Sabbath day all together, and make it of no effect at all! When one studies the scriptures about the Sabbath day, it is easy to resist shallow arguments that the Sabbath was made only for the Jews, or that it was done away with by Jesus. This day has been in effect as Holy time to God, since the foundation of the world. Therefore we should take the time to research exactly what God COMMANDS of us during this Holy Sabbath Day that comes each week! Man has NO AUTHORITY to take away or change ANYTHING God has made HOLY (Exodus 20:8-11)!

Truth # 14: Those Who Are Lead By The Spirit Of God, Will Obey God! Those Are They He Calls “Sons”!!!

We cannot be a Follower of Christ and “NOT” OBEY His Commands (Romans 8:14)! This verse defines a TRUE CHRISTIAN (see also Romans 8:9)!  A True Christian is one who has the Holy Spirit! How do we get this Holy Spirit?

We repent (Mark 1:15) and believe in the ONLY Gospel.

Then we are to be baptized (Acts 2:38) for the remissions of sins – then we receive the Holy Spirit! God’s Spirit will lead us in all TRUTH!

There is a great study on the Holy Spirit on our website:

BIBLE STUDY: The Holy Spirit of God - The Third Person of a Trinity, or The Power of An Almighty, Eternal God?

 

That will help make it much clearer to you, what it means to be a “son” of God.

We hope now you too have a much deeper understanding of the wonderful Truth Christ came to proclaim to those who follow Him!

You can continue on with Part 3 of this study which is available at: http://www.onug.us/content/bible-study-truths-and-lies-about-bible-part-3

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If you have never faithfully kept God’s seventh day Sabbath holy or God’s Holy Days, the way Jesus Christ did – in the flesh, and in the fellowship of other followers of the Son of Man; we invite you to obediently enter into God’s rest today, and to keep the Feasts of the LORD (Hebrews 4:1-11 / Leviticus 23:1-44)! Contact us to find out where we fellowship and worship God, in your area, on His Sabbath Days (Exodus 31:12-18). We would love to hear from you and help get you started!

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”But ye believe not, because ye are not of my sheep, as I said unto you. My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me: And I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck them out of my hand. My Father, which gave them me, is greater than all; and no man is able to pluck them out of my Father's hand. I and my Father are one” (John 10:26-30).

Christians must learn to read the Bible, interpret the scriptures according to Biblical principles (Isaiah 28:9-10, 13 / Matthew 13:52), and begin to apply the precepts they learn in their walk with God. Individual study is essential; coupled with fellowship times of group study, worship, and discussions of personal insights and observations.

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