FIRST-TRUMP#top..........Sound the alarm in Zion..... ...........................

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. A Priest sounds the alarm on a shofar

 

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BELIEVE YOU ME


How can ye believe, which receive honour one of another, and seek not the honour that cometh from God only? (John 5:44)

Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen. (Heb 11:1)

If I have told you earthly things, and ye believe not, how shall ye believe, if I tell you of heavenly things? (John 3:12)

Nicodemus was not an ignorant man. He apparently was part of the Sanhedrin, a collection of the seventy most knowledgeable people in the land regarding the Torah, the Bible of the Jews. This man could not understand the Heavenly things Jesus was telling him. Yet today, in the age of the apostate church, we tell new converts that they should go into the world and preach the Gospel, when they don't even know what the words means.

Afterward he appeared unto the eleven as they sat at meat, and upbraided them with their unbelief and hardness of heart, because they believed not them which had seen him after he was risen. And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature. He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned. (Mark 16:14-16)

But, we say, this is what Jesus charged His disciples to do. However, as we examine this command, we see that it went out to those who had followed Jesus for over three years and were given many instructions and had the example of their Master to emulate.

And how shall they preach, except they be sent? as it is written, How beautiful are the feet of them that preach the gospel of peace, and bring glad tidings of good things!

Most people when they enter the mission field have in their armory a minimum of resources from which to draw, but they are aided by the fact that those they approach are without resources as well. Today I would like to alter this situation, and present a story of one such neophyte who encounters a hard nut to crack:

I place before you Jack, a Christian from one of the denominational churches who is about to satisfy the command given by Jesus in the above verses. Let's follow his mission as he sets out to try and convince a non-believer that the Bible is the Word of God:

“Hi, my name is Jack. I see you're studying a book. Am I disturbing you at a bad time?”

“Not at all Jack. Have a seat. I was just about to take a break anyway. Good reading though. Silly, but interesting.”

“Do tell. What is it that has you so engrossed?”

“I'm reading about the gods the Greeks and the Romans believed in. Like Thor who they believed throws lightening bolts at us. And there's people like Paris who was supposed to be half god and half man, having a god as a father, and a mother who was an earthling. I see you're also into mythology, Jack?”

“Me? Into mythology? Why do you say that?”

“By the book you're carrying. It contains more fantasies than the Greeks had. I mean, you don't believe that stuff do you?”

“Sure I do. And what's in this Book is all true, it's not fiction at all.”

“Is that right? Ok then, let's look at what I was just talking about, I mean, the Greeks and their half-gods. Look at these verses and tell me what you think.”

Behold, a virgin shall be with child, and shall bring forth a son, and they shall call his name Emmanuel, which being interpreted is, God with us. (Mat 1:23)

Say ye of him, whom the Father hath sanctified, and sent into the world, Thou blasphemest; because I said, I am the Son of God? (John 10:36)

“See what I mean, Jack? Half man, half god, just like in this book I'm reading.”

“Yes, but this is different. The Bible is literally true, and those other gods are just myths, they're not real.”

“Who says so? The book you're reading says it's true, and to you that makes it true? That's circular reasoning, proving the book by the words in the book. I could prove that Mickey Mouse was real by that kind of reasoning.”

“It's a matter of faith.... I'm sorry, I didn't catch your name.”

“My name's Bill. Faith my eye. Faith in what? In a book filled with fanciful tales that contradict themselves? Here Jack, look at this, in your own book, and see if you can explain what it says here:”

There went up a smoke out of his (God's) nostrils, and fire out of his mouth devoured: coals were kindled by it. He bowed the heavens also, and came down: and darkness was under his feet. And he rode upon a cherub, and did fly: yea, he did fly upon the wings of the wind. (Psa 18:8-10)

“According to this, God has fire coming from His mouth like a dragon. And you tell me I'm supposed to believe this?

“This isn't supposed to be taken literally Bill. It's like a poem, a story, not something real.”

“And how am I or anyone else supposed to know what is real and what is merely a parable? You say the Bible is real and that you believe all of it, yet here you say what I read can't be taken as true. You contradict yourself while your words are still in your mouth. Now, let's take a look at another of the stories I'm supposed to believe just because they are in the Bible:”

Speak, and say, Thus saith the Lord GOD; Behold, I am against thee, Pharaoh king of Egypt, the great dragon that lieth in the midst of his rivers, which hath said, My river is mine own, and I have made it for myself. (Ezek 29:3)

“Here we have the Pharaoh seen as a dragon. Do dragons rule Egypt now?”

“You're taking the words too literally, Bill. Ezekiel doesn't really mean that the Pharaoh is a dragon.”

“I'm taking the Bible to literally? I thought you were the one who said the Bible is to be read literally. I'm just pointing out the places that literally says things that you say the Bible doesn't really mean. Can't you make up your mind what you believe and what you don't believe? Here, let's look at a story that is more in tune with your belief system, Jack:”

And Moses stretched out his hand over the sea; and the LORD caused the sea to go back by a strong east wind all that night, and made the sea dry land, and the waters were divided. (Ex 14:21)

"Anyone can tell you that this is impossible. No one can make the waters spread apart like that. Is this a metaphor like the others we just looked at? Or is this another story I'm supposed to believe just because it's in an unbelievable book?”

“This is a miracle, Bill. It's not supposed to be part of the natural world. Miracles are God working, like it says here. It says God separated the waters, not Moses.”

“Yeah, sure. And Thor throwing lightning bolts at people is a miracle too And so I'm supposed to believe in Thor?” Here's another of your famous miracles:”

And the LORD said unto Noah, Come thou and all thy house into the ark; for thee have I seen righteous before me in this generation. Of every clean beast thou shalt take to thee by sevens, the male and his female: and of beasts that are not clean by two, the male and his female. (Gen 7:1-2)

“Have you ever tried to figure out how Noah could put all those animals, and the food to feed them into that boat not nearly as big as a cruiser ship? I have, and it's impossible. Yet this story is one you expect people to believe even though it is physically impossible to accomplish. Come on now Jack, be reasonable.”

“All I can say is, it's in the Bible, so it has to be true. Man shall live by faith, and Bill, it takes no faith to believe those things that can be proven by science.”

“A nice philosophy, Jack, but that brings me back to Thor and Mickey Mouse, I believe in them because I have faith that they are real. See? If it works for you, then it works for me. Now here, let's look at another of the stories I'm to believe without evidence:”

And on the seventh day God ended his work which he had made; and he rested on the seventh day from all his work which he had made. (Gen 2:2)

“God supposedly made the world and everything on it in seven days. Not likely. I find it interesting that you church guys talk against kids who believe what they're taught in school, but yet you take on faith what they dish out to you in church with even less evidence then what the schools provide”

“The Bible says that a day is as a thousand years, so that gives us six thousand years for God to make everything. That's a lot more time than just seven days.”

“That's still not enough time, Jack. That doesn't leave time to account for all the dinosaurs and the shifting of mountains and other events that science has proven occurred on this earth. You're clutching at straws, and trying to call them life boats. Evolution is a proven fact. And that eliminates the possibility of your so-called creation theory.”

“Evolution isn't a proven fact, Bill. In fact it's foolishness from the get-go. It's just a tool the schools use to try and discount the creation story. Besides, haven't you heard about the gap theory where God created this world and then millions of years later had to do it over again? It's the time when Satan fell from grace, and was cast to earth. I'm sure you've heard of this before.”

“Sure I have, but not in the Bible. It takes a lot of finagling to find even a shred of evidence pointing at this theory. I think if the story of Satan's fall was real, and there was millions of years involved in that recreation, the Bible would have made it a lot more clear than to suggest it in ways that don't hold water. Here now, this is interesting, and it sounds a whole lot like what I'm reading in this mythological book. If it included the story of Samson, I would think I was reading something out of Homer:”

There were giants in the earth in those days; and also after that, when the sons of God came in unto the daughters of men, and they bare children to them, the same became mighty men which were of old, men of renown. (Gen 6:4)

“Giants having children by human women, creating more half gods. Right out of Homer. Here;s another of your popular fiction stories everyone is supposed to believe:”

And as he talked with them, behold, there came up the champion, the Philistine of Gath, Goliath by name, out of the armies of the Philistines, and spake according to the same words: and David heard them. (1Sam 17:23)

“Now we have a kid fighting a nine foot tall giant that all the warriors are afraid of. And you want me to believe this? Hang on, here's more mythology that comes straight out of the books written by the Greeks and Norsemen.”

And there appeared another wonder in heaven; and behold a great red dragon, having seven heads and ten horns, and seven crowns upon his heads. And his tail drew the third part of the stars of heaven, and did cast them to the earth: and the dragon stood before the woman which was ready to be delivered, for to devour her child as soon as it was born. (Rev 12:3-4)

“A dragon with seven heads after a woman standing on the moon. Come on now Jack, you don't really believe all this, do you?”

And in the midst of the seven candlesticks one like unto the Son of man, clothed with a garment down to the foot, and girt about the paps with a golden girdle. His head and his hairs were white like wool, as white as snow; and his eyes were as a flame of fire; And his feet like unto fine brass, as if they burned in a furnace; and his voice as the sound of many waters. (Rev 1:13-15)

“Now we have someone with fire coming from his eyes, and feet like brass. And here's more:”

But for us also, to whom it shall be imputed, if we believe on him that raised up Jesus our Lord from the dead; (Rom 4:24)

“A man raised from the dead. and not only this man, but there is supposed to be a whole lot more besides, when the time comes. And how about the big building the size of the moon that's supposed to come down out of the sky? This book of yours is a lot to swallow, Jack. Yet, without any evidence but your own say-so, you say you fully believe what's written here:”

And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of man be lifted up: That whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have eternal life. For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. (John 3:14-16)

“And here's the clincher, Jack. All I hear is that God loves everyone, and wants only the best for them. Yet He has a hell that will burn everyone up for an eternity if they flinch the wrong way, or decide not to be totally on His side. Besides this we see where He destroyed anyone and everyone He didn't like in the Old Testament, and is planning on doing even worse at the end of this age. No Jack, I don't think your Bible is believable, and if it is true, I can't accept what it says. And to tell you the truth, I don't think you believe it either. I think you just accept it because you want it to be true. What do you have to say about that?”

“Well Jack, I really can't argue with your logic or your examples, and it's not my purpose or intention to prove you wrong. All I can say is that there is something in me that goes against my logical mind and tells me that what I read in the Bible is true. I've had experiences in my life that convince me that God is real and working in my life. If you haven't had these experiences as well, then even if I could convince you of what I see, it would do you no good because you could only believe with your mind and not with your heart. It would be like fully believing that the book you're reading is true. Your belief would be as worthless as your Mickey Mouse comic book to which you referred. The Bible has something to say about such a situation as we are discussing, and I will leave you with it:”

But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts: and be ready always to give an answer to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you with meekness and fear: (1Peter 3:15)

No man can come to me, except the Father which hath sent me draw him: and I will raise him up at the last day. (John 6:44)

And he answering said, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy strength, and with all thy mind; and thy neighbour as thyself. (Luke 10:27)

So likewise, whosoever he be of you that forsaketh not all that he hath, he cannot be my disciple. (Luke 14:33)

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