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And the Earth Groans Under Mankind’s Sin

I have to chuckle at these fools like Al Gore who push a false agenda of so-called global warming so that he can profit from it. I believe what we witness today and see growing worse each year is the continued groaning of the earth. It is the groaning of the pain it experiences from the initial sin of mankind in the Garden that brought about the curse on all of God’s creation. It is that groaning that will continue to get worse as our sin grows worse. When God returns, He will make an end of our sin and an end of the groanings. He will make a New Heaven and a New Earth. Isaiah speaks of this in Chapter 24. (Matthew Henry’s Concise Comments added)

Isaiah 24

1 Behold, the LORD maketh the earth empty, and maketh it waste, and turneth it upside down, and scattereth abroad the inhabitants thereof.
2 And it shall be, as with the people, so with the priest; as with the servant, so with his master; as with the maid, so with her mistress; as with the buyer, so with the seller; as with the lender, so with the borrower; as with the taker of usury, so with the giver of usury to him.
3 The land shall be utterly emptied, and utterly spoiled: for the LORD hath spoken this word.
4 The earth mourneth and fadeth away, the world languisheth and fadeth away, the haughty people of the earth do languish.
5 The earth also is defiled under the inhabitants thereof; because they have transgressed the laws, changed the ordinance, broken the everlasting covenant.
6 Therefore hath the curse devoured the earth, and they that dwell therein are desolate: therefore the inhabitants of the earth are burned, and few men left.
7 The new wine mourneth, the vine languisheth, all the merryhearted do sigh.
8 The mirth of tabrets ceaseth, the noise of them that rejoice endeth, the joy of the harp ceaseth.
9 They shall not drink wine with a song; strong drink shall be bitter to them that drink it.
10 The city of confusion is broken down: every house is shut up, that no man may come in.
11 There is a crying for wine in the streets; all joy is darkened, the mirth of the land is gone.
12 In the city is left desolation, and the gate is smitten with destruction. (All whose treasures and happiness are laid up on earth, will soon be brought to want and misery. It is good to apply to ourselves what the Scripture says of the vanity and vexation of spirit which attend all things here below. Sin has turned the earth upside down; the earth is become quite different to man, from what it was when God first made it to be his habitation. It is, at the best, like a flower, which withers in the hands of those that please themselves with it, and lay it in their bosoms. The world we live in is a world of disappointment, a vale of tears; the children of men in it are but of few days, and full of trouble, See the power of God’s curse, how it makes all empty, and lays waste all ranks and conditions. Sin brings these calamities upon the earth; it is polluted by the sins of men, therefore it is made desolate by God’s judgments. Carnal joy will soon be at end, and the end of it is heaviness. God has many ways to imbitter wine and strong drink to those who love them; distemper of body, anguish of mind, and the ruin of the estate, will make strong drink bitter, and the delights of sense tasteless. Let men learn to mourn for sin, and rejoice in God; then no man, no event, can take their joy from them.)

13 When thus it shall be in the midst of the land among the people, there shall be as the shaking of an olive tree, and as the gleaning grapes when the vintage is done.
14 They shall lift up their voice, they shall sing for the majesty of the LORD, they shall cry aloud from the sea.
15 Wherefore glorify ye the LORD in the fires, even the name of the LORD God of Israel in the isles of the sea. (There shall be a remnant preserved from the general ruin, and it shall be a devout and pious remnant. These few are dispersed; like the gleanings of the olive tree, hid under the leaves. The Lord knows those that are his; the world does not. When the mirth of carnal worldlings ceases, the joy of the saints is as lively as ever, because the covenant of grace, the fountain of their comforts, and the foundation of their hopes, never fails. Those who rejoice in the Lord can rejoice in tribulation, and by faith may triumph when all about them are in tears. They encourage their fellow-sufferers to do likewise, even those who are in the furnace of affliction. Or, in the valleys, low, dark, miry places. In every fire, even the hottest, in every place, even the remotest, let us keep up our good thoughts of God. If none of these trials move us, then we glorify the Lord in the fires.)

16 From the uttermost part of the earth have we heard songs, even glory to the righteous. But I said, My leanness, my leanness, woe unto me! the treacherous dealers have dealt treacherously; yea, the treacherous dealers have dealt very treacherously.
17 Fear, and the pit, and the snare, are upon thee, O inhabitant of the earth.
18 And it shall come to pass, that he who fleeth from the noise of the fear shall fall into the pit; and he that cometh up out of the midst of the pit shall be taken in the snare: for the windows from on high are open, and the foundations of the earth do shake.
19 The earth is utterly broken down, the earth is clean dissolved, the earth is moved exceedingly.
20 The earth shall reel to and fro like a drunkard, and shall be removed like a cottage; and the transgression thereof shall be heavy upon it; and it shall fall, and not rise again.
21 And it shall come to pass in that day, that the LORD shall punish the host of the high ones that are on high, and the kings of the earth upon the earth.
22 And they shall be gathered together, as prisoners are gathered in the pit, and shall be shut up in the prison, and after many days shall they be visited.
23 Then the moon shall be confounded, and the sun ashamed, when the LORD of hosts shall reign in mount Zion, and in Jerusalem, and before his ancients gloriously. (Believers may be driven into the uttermost parts of the earth; but they are singing, not sighing. Here is terror to sinners; the prophet laments the miseries he saw breaking in like a torrent; and the small number of believers. He foresees that sin would abound. The meaning is plain, that evil pursues sinners. Unsteady, uncertain are all these things. Worldly men think to dwell in the earth as in a palace, as in a castle; but it shall be removed like a cottage, like a lodge put up for the night. It shall fall and not rise again; but there shall be new heavens and a new earth, in which shall dwell nothing but righteousness. Sin is a burden to the whole creation; it is a heavy burden, under which it groans now, and will sink at last. The high ones, that are puffed up with their grandeur, that think themselves out of the reach of danger, God will visit for their pride and cruelty. Let us judge nothing before the time, though some shall be visited. None in this world should be secure, though their condition be ever so prosperous; nor need any despair, though their condition be ever so deplorable. God will be glorified in all this. But the mystery of Providence is not yet finished. The ruin of the Redeemer’s enemies must make way for his kingdom, and then the Sun of Righteousness will appear in full glory. Happy are those who take warning by the sentence against others; every impenitent sinner will sink under his transgression, and rise no more, while believers enjoy everlasting bliss.)

Image result for images of the earth in gods hands

 
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Posted by on June 27, 2017 in God's Truth

 

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“Fervent Heat”

Thank you Lord for this Baptist Bread Devotional! And thank you Pastor/Dr. Steve Harness for these great Godly words of wisdom!

II Peter 3:10 “But the day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night; in the which the heavens shall pass away with a great noise, and the elements shall melt with fervent heat, the earth and the works that are therein shall be burned up.

Believers are looking for the return of Christ, the Blessed Hope, for the Rapture, when Christ takes His own out of this Jesus-rejecting world. Once the Rapture takes place, the world will follow antichrist, and the Lord will begin judging the earth in what is called the Tribulation.

When God’s plan for the world is complete, the earth will be destroyed. This is what is being referenced in this passage in II Peter. Not too long ago, I was able to visit two volcanoes. What a thrill to see this amazingly powerful natural phenomenon. The destructive force of volcanoes and the lava they spew are incredible. Mount Pinatubo in the Philippines erupted in 1991. The effects are still seen over twenty years later! When the Bible talks about fervent heat and the elements dissolving away, it is speaking of an event more powerful than the eruption of a volcano.

II Peter 3:12 also mentions the melting with fervent heat, then verse 13 says, “Nevertheless we, according to his promise, look for new heavens and a new earth, wherein dwelleth righteousness.” Verse 11 tells us that in the meantime, while waiting for Christ, and later the new Heaven and new earth, that we are to carefully live holy lives before the Lord. Check your life and check your motives today. –Steve Harness

 
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Posted by on January 29, 2016 in God's Truth

 

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“I Will Answer”

Psalm 91:14-16 “Because he hath set his love upon me, therefore will I deliver him: I will set him on high, because he hath known my name. He shall call upon me, and I will answer him: I will be with him in trouble; I will deliver him, and honour him. With long life will I satisfy him, and shew him my salvation.” (Part II of D.L. Moody’s Sermon “The Ninety-First Psalm”)

II. “I Will Answer” “He shall call upon me, and I will answer him.” There is a chance for all of us to call. The great God that made Heaven and earth has promised, “I will answer him.” If you call on God for deliverance and for victory over sin and every evil, God is not going to turn a deaf ear to your call. I do not care how black your life has been, I do not care what your past record has been, I do not care how disobedient you have been, I do not care how you have back-slidden and wandered; if you really want to come back, God accepts the willing mind, God will hear your prayer, and He will answer.

Listen to the prodigal: “Father, I have sinned!” That was enough; the father took him right to his bosom. The past was blotted out at once. Look at the men on the day of Pentecost. Their hands were dripping with the blood of the Son of God; they had murdered JESUS CHRIST. And what did Peter say to them, “It shall come to pass, that whosoever shall call on the name of the Lord shall be saved.” Look at the penitent thief. It might have been that when a little boy, his mother taught him that same passage in Joel, “It shall come to pass, that whosoever shall call on the name of the Lord shall be saved.” As he hung there on the Cross, it flashed into his mind that this was the Lord of glory, and though he was on the very borders of hell, he cried out, “Lord, remember me,” and the answer came right then and there, “To day thou shalt be with me in paradise.” In the morning associated with thieves; in the evening, associated with the purest of Heaven. In the morning, cursing – Matthew and Mark both tell us that those two thieves came out cursing; in the evening, uplifted on high, an inhabitant of Heaven. In the morning, as black as hell could make him; in the evening, not a spot or wrinkle. Why? Because he took God at His word.

My dear friend, if you are unsaved, you just call upon God now, and here is a promise, “I will answer him.”

A few years ago an old returned missionary went to one of our leading hospitals to have a surgical operation performed. He was to go under ether, and it was doubtful whether he would come out or not; he might wake up in another world. He bade adieu to his friends, gave them his farewell blessing – he was a very Godly man – and when the doctor said, “Well, we are ready,” he faced them, and with a calm look, he said: “Would you just wait a minute?” Then he lifted his voice in prayer, “Now I lay me down to sleep, I pray the Lord my soul to keep. If I should die before I wake, I pray the Lord my soul to take.” Then, opening his eyes, he said, “Doctor, I am ready,” and passed under the knife, and out from under it into health.

My dear friends, it is a sweet privilege to pray; it is a sweet privilege to be in touch with Heaven, to be in communion with the great God that made Heaven and earth. “I will answer him.” I suppose there is not a Christian in this audience but can say Amen to that. You can say God has answered in the past, and you believe He will do so again. Some people say they cannot call. Perhaps you cannot make an eloquent prayer – I hope that you cannot – I have heard about all the eloquent prayers I want to. But you can say, “God, be merciful to me, a sinner…” Only be sincere, and God will hear your cry. Mark you, there is a sham cry. Mothers understand that; they know when their children cry in earnest, or whether it is a sham cry. Let the child give a real cry of distress, and the mother will leave everything and fly to her child. I have been forty years in Christian work, and I have never known God to disappoint any man or woman who was in earnest about their soul’s salvation. I know lots of people who pretend to be in earnest, but their prayers are never answered.

 
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Posted by on August 7, 2015 in God's Love

 

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The Doctrine of Heaven – Part 1

Introduction

Deuteronomy 10:14 “Behold, the heaven and the heaven of heavens is the LORD’s thy God, the earth also, with all that therein is.”

All of the heavens and heaven belong to God. The earth belongs to God, and we belong to God. The thief, satan, tries to steal them from God and claim ownership. Yet God is the Maker and Owner of all things. Heaven is the Lord’s. The word “Heaven” comes from the Greek word “ouranos” (oo-ran-os). Thus, the Doctrine of Heaven is called Ouranology.

What does heaven mean? The word heaven means “lofty” or “elevation.” Heaven is used in the Bible 551 times. It is used 313 times in the Old Testament, and 238 times in the New Testament. Consider that hell is mentioned only 54 times in the Bible. The Bible speaks of Heaven over 10 times more than it does hell. Hell was created for satan and his minions. Heaven is where God wants us all to end up! Let us rejoice in that fact. Be sure that you are saved from your sins, so that you can go to our Heavenly home some day!

The word heavens (plural) appears an additional 127 times in our King James Bible (it, along with many other words and verses have been removed or changed in the other corrupt versions of the Bible). Thus, the total times heaven is mentioned is 678 times.

God the Father 21

I. The Creation of the Heavens

  • The heavens were made by God

Genesis 1:1, “In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth.” They did not always exist as God has. They were made. Their making marked “the beginning.”

Nehemiah 9:6 “Thou, even thou, art LORD alone; thou hast made heaven, the heaven of heavens, with all their host, the earth, and all things that are therein, the seas, and all that is therein, and thou preservest them all; and the host of heaven worshippeth thee.”

  • They were made by the Son of God

Colossians 1:16 “For by him were all things created, that are in heaven, and that are in earth, visible and invisible, whether they be thrones, or dominions, or principalities, or powers: all things were created by him, and for him:”

  • They were made by the Holy Spirit

Job 26:13 “By his spirit he hath garnished the heavens; his hand hath formed the crooked serpent.”

  • They were made by the Word of the Lord

Psalm 33:6 “By the word of the LORD were the heavens made; and all the host of them by the breath of his mouth.”

The whole Trinity was involved in the creation of Heaven. They spoke it into existence. Man cannot speak anything into existence, but God can. That is the power of His Word. God uses His Word to do His work! We should do the same!

Holy Trinity

Next Entry will begin study of “The Three Heavens.”

 
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Posted by on July 20, 2013 in God's Truth

 

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Restoration of the New Heaven and New Earth

 

Between Heaven & Earth

heavens

A. New Heaven

1. Prophesied: Isaiah 65:17 “For, behold, I create new heavens and a new earth: and the former shall not be remembered, nor come into mind.” See also Isaiah 66:22. Matthew 24:35 “Heaven and earth shall pass away, but my words shall not pass away.” See also Matthew 5:18; Mark 13:31; Luke 21:33; Hebrews 12:25-29.

2. Fulfilled: 2 Peter 3:10, 13 “But the day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night; in the which the heavens shall pass away with a great noise, and the elements shall melt with fervent heat, the earth also and the works that are therein shall be burned up… Nevertheless we, according to his promise, look for new heavens and a new earth, wherein dwelleth righteousness.” See also Revelation 21:1.

3. Destruction of Present Heavens – Dissolved with fire and rolled back like a scroll – Isaiah 34:4; 2 Peter 3:12 – “And all the host of heaven shall be dissolved, and the heavens shall be rolled together as a scroll: and all their host shall fall down, as the leaf falleth off from the vine, and as a falling fig from the fig tree.” “Looking for and hasting unto the coming of the day of God, wherein the heavens being on fire shall be dissolved, and the elements shall melt with fervent heat?” Revelation 6:14 “And the heaven departed as a scroll when it is rolled together; and every mountain and island were moved out of their places.”

4. Creation of New Heaven (Isaiah 65:17; Isaiah 66:22) A direct creative act of God.

B. New Earth

1. Prophesied (Isaiah 65:17; Isaiah 66:22; Matthew 5:18; Matthew 24:35; Mark 13:31; Luke 21:33; Hebrews 12:25-29; Revelation 21:5)

2. Fulfilled – 2 Peter 3:7-14 “But the heavens and the earth, which are now, by the same word are kept in store, reserved unto fire against the day of judgment and perdition of ungodly men. But, beloved, be not ignorant of this one thing, that one day is with the Lord as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day. The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance. But the day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night; in the which the heavens shall pass away with a great noise, and the elements shall melt with fervent heat, the earth also and the works that are therein shall be burned up. Seeing then that all these things shall be dissolved, what manner of persons ought ye to be in all holy conversation and godliness, Looking for and hasting unto the coming of the day of God, wherein the heavens being on fire shall be dissolved, and the elements shall melt with fervent heat? Nevertheless we, according to his promise, look for new heavens and a new earth, wherein dwelleth righteousness. Wherefore, beloved, seeing that ye look for such things, be diligent that ye may be found of him in peace, without spot, and blameless. (Also Revelation 21:1)

3. Destruction of Present Earth

a. Destroyed by fire (2 Peter 3:7)

b. Destroyed by fervent heat (2 Peter 3:10, 12)

4. Creation of New Earth – Isaiah 65:17; 66:22 “For, behold, I create new heavens and a new earth: and the former shall not be remembered, nor come into mind.” “For as the new heavens and the new earth, which I will make, shall remain before me, saith the LORD, so shall your seed and your name remain.” Again, a direct creative act of God.

 

 
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Posted by on October 2, 2012 in Eschatology

 

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Creation of the First Woman

Adam and Eve

Adam and Eve (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

 

The first time the word woman appears in the Bible is when God created Eve from Adam’s rib or side. The Hebrew word for this usage of woman is nashiym (naw-sheem), “because she was taken out of man” (Genesis 2:23). The stress is on identification of womanhood.

God’s word tells us that he created the earth and the heavens and everything in them in seven days. It was on the 6th day that he created mankind. Genesis 1:26, 27 – “And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness: and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea and over the fowl of the air and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth. 27. So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them.”

We see that God made both man and woman in his image. One was not any more the image of God than the other. Neither sex was of more or lesser value to God. He fashioned and prepared us for various tasks, but his purpose was for us to live with the same intent: to honor God. Though one of us is not superior to the other, each of our genders has its own exclusive privileges.

In Genesis 2:18 God saw that it was not good for Adam to be alone; he was incomplete. “I will make him an help meet for him.” So God formed all of the beasts of the field and the birds in the air and gave them to Adam to see what names he would give them. But there was no help meet found for him among all of those.

God put Adam into a deep sleep and took one of his ribs and made a woman and brought her to him. The Hebrew word for rib used here is the feminine tsalah (tsal-aw). Literally it means a rib, as curved, of the body; or figuratively, a side or chamber of a person. Wow! It makes me think of woman actually being taken out of a chamber in man’s side. That helps me to understand why it is a God-given instinct for a man to take his woman under his wing to care for and protect her. It also explains why we women have a deep desire for our knight in shining armor to ride in, whisk us off our feet and devote his life to us. I believe that deep down inside, every woman wants her husband to step up and be the Godly leader that God created him to be. I know that I find that very comforting.

God could have made Eve from dust as he did Adam, but he chose to create her from the man’s flesh and bone. This symbolizes how a man’s and a woman’s hearts and lives are mysteriously joined together in marriage. We can see throughout God’s word that he takes this union very seriously.

A good question to ask ourselves before marrying is : “Are we willing to keep the commitment which makes the two of us one? The ultimate goal in marriage is more than friendship; it is oneness.

Side Note: God did not create man out of man nor woman out of woman that they would be godly joined in union as one. His word clearly states that he made woman from the side of man. The natural union of man and woman in marriage is a sacred blessing from God.

Homosexuality: to “change” or “leave the natural use of” sex

For those who live a homosexual lifestyle and try to justify it by pointing to God’s love and grace, I say, examine yourselves as to whether you are truly a born-again child of God, or ask yourselves if you are being led astray by Satan’s deceivers. Some are choosing to be deceived by so-called preachers (some who are homosexuals themselves) who teach that they cannot help being the way they are. Many believe and teach that their desires are normal and that they have a right to express them. God does not encourage us to fulfill all of our desires, as they are not all good desires. We must restrain those desires that violate his laws. Satan’s liars do not set the standard for God’s Law, and they will answer to God for it.

Yes, God does love the sinner, but he does hate the sin. He is willing to receive anyone who comes to him in faith, and as Christians, we should always love and accept others, but not their sin. We are not to stand in judgment, but to use good judgment when it comes to tolerating what God looks upon as sin.

Homosexuality is a sin in God’s eyes. Leviticus 18:22 “Thou shalt not lie with mankind, as with womankind: it is an abomination.” The Hebrew word here for abomination as referenced to God (because this act is an abomination in God’s eyes) is toebah (to-ay-baw) – and it describes people, things, acts, relationships, and characteristics that are detestable to Him because they are contrary to His nature.

Can a saved person live the life of a homosexual? I have pondered that question much because I know and love some who live that lifestyle and say that they are saved. Only God knows that for sure. Saved people are sinners and we will be until we be with our Lord. We are to live day by day in God’s grace, repenting for sins that our natural flesh is tempted to. Repenting means turning away from.

I would venture to say that if they are saved, they are ignoring the roots of whatever issues they have in their pasts that may have led them to this lifestyle. I would also submit, that if they were totally honest with themselves, they would admit that they do not have God’s peace that passes understanding in their spirits.

To those who have homosexual desires: You can and must resist acting upon them. As with temptation to any sin, you must consciously stay away from places and behaviors that you know will spark these temptations. Do not underestimate Satan’s power and goal to lead you astray. Also, I beg you to consider the risk you take for serious harm if you keep giving in to these temptations.

If you are saved and living a homosexual lifestyle: Do not forget that God will forgive sexual sins the same as he forgives other sins. The key is to completely surrender yourselves to the grace and mercy of God, and ask him to show you the way out of sin and into the light of his liberty and love. Immerse yourselves in prayer, Bible study, and the loving support of Christians in a Bible-believing church that does not water down God’s word to make you feel better about your sin. Those actions will help you to gain the strength that you need to resist those powerful temptations. You may even need to seek the help of a trustworthy and professional true, Christian counselor. Christian meaning living a Christ-filled, Christ-like lifestyle.

 
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Posted by on February 27, 2011 in God's Love

 

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