Category Archives: GOD

What is “visitation” in Scripture?

WHAT IS “VISITATION” IN SCRIPTURE?

by Shawn Brasseaux

The word appears 15 times in the Authorized Version King James Bible. In Hebrew, it is “pequddah.” The Greek equivalent is “episcope” (“look over, inspect”). Depending on the context, it can be good or bad. For example, the first instance is Numbers 16:29: “If these men die the common death of all men, or if they be visited after the visitation of all men; then the LORD hath not sent me.” This, of course, is bad. It is in connection with physical death! In the case of Job 10:12, however, the word is employed in the sense of God’s caring or loving oversight: “Thou hast granted me life and favour, and thy visitation hath preserved my spirit.”

Most of the time in Scripture (especially Jeremiah), the idea concerns Divine judgment or God’s punishment of sinners:

  • Isaiah 10:3: “And what will ye do in the day of visitation, and in the desolation which shall come from far? to whom will ye flee for help? and where will ye leave your glory?”
  • Jeremiah 8:12: “Were they ashamed when they had committed abomination? nay, they were not at all ashamed, neither could they blush: therefore shall they fall among them that fall: in the time of their visitation they shall be cast down, saith the LORD.”
  • Jeremiah 10:15: “They are vanity, and the work of errors: in the time of their visitation they shall perish.”
  • Jeremiah 11:23: “And there shall be no remnant of them: for I will bring evil upon the men of Anathoth, even the year of their visitation.”
  • Jeremiah 23:12: “Wherefore their way shall be unto them as slippery ways in the darkness: they shall be driven on, and fall therein: for I will bring evil upon them, even the year of their visitation, saith the LORD.”
  • Jeremiah 46:21: “Also her hired men are in the midst of her like fatted bullocks; for they also are turned back, and are fled away together: they did not stand, because the day of their calamity was come upon them, and the time of their visitation.”
  • Jeremiah 48:44: “He that fleeth from the fear shall fall into the pit; and he that getteth up out of the pit shall be taken in the snare: for I will bring upon it, even upon Moab, the year of their visitation, saith the LORD.”
  • Jeremiah 50:27: “Slay all her bullocks; let them go down to the slaughter: woe unto them! for their day is come, the time of their visitation.”
  • Jeremiah 51:18: “They are vanity, the work of errors: in the time of their visitation they shall perish.”
  • Hosea 9:7: “The days of visitation are come, the days of recompence are come; Israel shall know it: the prophet is a fool, the spiritual man is mad, for the multitude of thine iniquity, and the great hatred.”
  • Micah 7:4: “The best of them is as a brier: the most upright is sharper than a thorn hedge: the day of thy watchmen and thy visitation cometh; now shall be their perplexity.”

The word twice appears in the Greek New Testament (Luke 19:44; 1 Peter 2:12): “episcope” means “look over, inspect.” It is translated “bishoprick” in Acts 1:20 (referring to Judas Iscariot’s apostolic office that Matthias later fills) and “office of a bishop” with respect to the local church leader (1 Timothy 3:1). Remember, the idea is “oversight,” as in a superintendent watching over operations. Acts 20:28, the Apostle Paul’s words to the elders of the church at Ephesus, captures this tenor: “Take heed therefore unto yourselves, and to all the flock, over the which the Holy Ghost hath made you overseers [episkopos], to feed the church of God, which he hath purchased with his own blood.”

In the case of Luke 19:44, Christ Jesus, having been rejected, spoke of Jerusalem’s future destruction: “And shall lay thee even with the ground, and thy children within thee; and they shall not leave in thee one stone upon another; because thou knewest not the time of thy visitation.” Israel did not have spiritual eyes to recognize the Lord Jesus Christ had fulfilled prophecy when He entered Jerusalem rising on the donkey. God was considering their response to His Son here, and they refused to have Him. Now, He would “pay them back” in righteous anger (yet future even now).

The final instance of “visitation” is 1 Peter 2:12: “Having your conversation honest among the Gentiles: that, whereas they speak against you as evildoers, they may by your good works, which they shall behold, glorify God in the day of visitation.” Israel’s believing remnant is exhorted or urged to conduct themselves separate and distinct from the evil world system. Gentiles (non-Jews) are observing them, so they need to have testimonies that lead the Gentiles to glorify the God of Israel. Daniel’s 70th Week will be another time of God considering or inspecting Israel’s behavior, their response to Him and His Son Jesus Christ.

Studying all these instances of “visitation” in Scripture, we understand the LORD God is looking over creation with considerate but righteous eyes. He is gracious and compassionate, watching over and blessing, like a loving parent monitoring the wellbeing of a child. However, He is also holy and separate from sinners, and His justice demands He enforce His righteousness. He must address and punish sin at some point. Thayer’s Greek Lexicon summarizes the concept succinctly: “In biblical Greek, after the Hebrew, that act by which God looks into and searches out the ways, deeds, character, of men, in order to adjudge them their lot accordingly, whether joyous or sad; inspection, investigation, visitation.”

Saints, please remember us in your monthly giving—these websites do cost money to run! 🙂 You can donate securely here: https://www.paypal.me/ShawnBrasseaux, or email me at arcministries@gmail.com. Do not forget about Bible Q&A booklets for sale at https://arcgraceministries.org/in-print/booklets-bible-q-a/. Thanks to all who give to and pray for us! By the way, ministry emails have really been backed up this year. I am handling them as much as humanly possible. Thanks for your patience. 🙂

Also see:
» Did God create evil?
» How can a “loving” God send people to Hell forever?
» Does God chasten us when we sin?

Does “neither the Son” belong in Matthew 24:36?

DOES “NEITHER THE SON” BELONG IN MATTHEW 24:36?

by Shawn Brasseaux

In the King James Bible, Matthew 24:36 reads: “But of that day and hour knoweth no man, no, not the angels of heaven, but my Father only.” Strangely, modern versions have: “But about that day or hour no one knows, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father.” (By the way, as a tangential comment, notice “my Father” was changed to “the Father,” eliminating a most important personal reference). We want to draw our attention to a stark inclusion. Whereas they usually omit or remove words found in the King James, here is one example of modern translations adding words. Modern versions contain “nor the Son,” but not the Authorized Version. Why does this disparity exist? How do we establish the correct reading? “For what saith the Scriptures?”

WHY THERE ARE DIFFERENCES: A BRIEF EXPLANATION

There are two reasons why the King James Bible and modern versions read differently. (And, contrary to what you have heard, there are differences—major differences! Here is one such instance, where a phrase is found in the former and not in the latter. That is distinction worth noting, and not to be taken lightly or easily dismissed.)

Firstly, there are two Greek New Testament manuscript families. It is not a matter of “old English” versus “modern English,” but rather competing manuscripts forming respective bases for those English versions. Earlier English Bibles—the last being the King James Bible—relied on one set of manuscripts (commonly called the Textus Receptus). However, about 140 years ago, British “scholarship” began to shift from that set of Greek Bible manuscripts and began to embrace the other manuscript stream. The result was the 1881 Revised Version (RV). Intended to be an “improved” Authorized Version (King James Bible), it was actually based on a different manuscript family. The alterations were extensive, and that was due to the influence of two apostate Cambridge “scholars,” Westcott and Hort, emphasizing Roman Catholic readings (Codices Vaticanus and Sinaiticus). In 1901, the American Standard Version—the American counterpart of the 1881 British RV—was released. Over 100 modern English versions have since followed, heavily depending on the “new” manuscript family as translation sources.

Secondly, modern English versions differ from the King James Bible because they were rendered using two divergent translation philosophies. Opinions of men have crept into the modern versions through a technique called “dynamic equivalence” (words can be changed, so long as their “sense” is retained—which is impossible!). The King James is not only based on the proper manuscripts, it was rendered correctly because of its “formal equivalence” (individual words matter, not merely thoughts!). While more could be said, this is enough information to set the background for the matter at hand.

WHY THERE IS A DIFFERENCE IN MATTHEW 24:36

Let us look at the verse comparison once again.

  • King James: “But of that day and hour knoweth no man, no, not the angels of heaven, but my Father only.”
  • Modern versions: “But about that day or hour no one knows, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father.”

“Nor the Son” appears in modern versions, but not the King James. Why? This is because modern versions depend on manuscripts that are not the same as the manuscripts on which the King James is based. The modern Greek has “nor the Son” in Matthew 24:36; the King James Greek (Textus Receptus) lacks it.

At this point, the modern version proponent would appeal to the parallel verse, Mark 13:32. Here is the verse in the King James: “But of that day and that hour knoweth no man, no, not the angels which are in heaven, neither the Son, but the Father.” Now, Mark 13:32 in modern versions: “But about that day or hour no one knows, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father.” So, the phrase “nor the Son” appears in both the King James and modern versions in Mark 13:32. Yet, it appears in Matthew 24:36 in modern versions only. The modern version supporters would argue it belongs in both verses, and the King James and its manuscripts are wrong in “eliminating” it from Matthew 24:36.

To summarize, one of two possibilities is true:

  1. Either…. The King James and its manuscripts removed “nor the Son” (“oude o huios”) from Matthew 24:36. Thus, Mark 13:32 indicates the phrase belongs in Matthew. (Here is what modern-version supporters contend.)
  2. Or…. The modern versions* and their manuscripts added “nor the Son” (“oude o huios”) in Matthew 24:36 to force it to match Mark 13:32. (This is the argument of the King James users.)

(*Modern versions: American Standard Version, Amplified Bible, English Standard Version, Good News Translation, Holman Christian Standard Bible, Living Bible, The Message, New American (Roman Catholic) Bible, New American Standard Bible, New International Version, New Living Translation, New Revised Standard Version, New World Translation [“Jehovah’s Witness bible”], Revised Standard Version, the Voice.)

Who is right? Which position is correct? This will be quite a challenge, huh? How would we even proceed in resolving this technical conflict? Actually, friend, it is not that difficult!

It is generally agreed that the Book of Matthew presents Jesus Christ as King, while the Book of Mark views Him as Servant. A careful comparison of both Books yields this to be true. This would explain why Matthew and Mark do not read word-for-word all the time. The Holy Spirit is emphasizing or stressing various and sundry points in order to portray Jesus from diverse angles. (Luke and John are two other independent Gospel Records, meant to read differently as well.)

John 15:14-15 is useful here: “Ye are my friends, if ye do whatsoever I command you. Henceforth I call you not servants; for the servant knoweth not what his lord doeth: but I have called you friends; for all things that I have heard of my Father I have made known unto you.” Could the Bible be clearer here? Does the servant know what his master is doing? No! Both the Authorized Version and modern versions agree here. Let us read those same verses in the New International Version: “You are my friends if you do what I command. I no longer call you servants, because a servant does not know his master’s business. Instead, I have called you friends, for everything that I learned from my Father I have made known to you.” The servant submits to his boss. Stated another way, the employer determines what should be done, then he issues orders to his employee to follow. Jesus’ comments in John actually help us resolve the textual disagreement concerning Matthew 24:36.  

CONCLUSION

Does “neither the Son” belong in Matthew 24:36? NO! If Mark is stressing Jesus’ servanthood (and that is the overwhelming consensus), and Matthew is underscoring His royalty (and that too no one denies), then Matthew and Mark would not harmonize concerning “knowledge.” Mark would certainly need “nor the Son,” for the Son of God is acting as Servant to Father God. Matthew, however, would not need “nor the Son,” for Matthew is not stressing Jesus’ servanthood. In other words, modern versions discredit themselves. John 15:15 in any and every version demands the inclusion of “nor the Son” in Mark 13:32, but there is no such necessity for its presence in Matthew 24:36 (an entirely different view of Christ!). No, the King James Bible and its underlying Greek did not eliminate “neither the Son” from Matthew. Modern English versions and the modern Greek added “nor the Son” to Matthew, so as to harmonize it with Mark… and they are wrong in doing so.

SUPPLEMENTAL: IF JESUS WERE GOD, HOW DID HE NOT KNOW?

“But of that day and hour knoweth no man, no, not the angels of heaven, but my Father only” (Matthew 24:36 KJV). “But of that day and that hour knoweth no man, no, not the angels which are in heaven, neither the Son, but the Father” (Mark 13:32 KJV). No man or angel knows when Jesus Christ will return to Earth at His Second Coming. How could Jesus say that only the Father knew when He would return? Was not Jesus God? Why did Jesus not know when He would return?

Jesus Christ is serving His Father, so He is submitting to His Father when it came to setting dates. Jesus could have openly declared precisely when He would come back, but He would appear to be autonomous (independent). He showed His reliance on Father God by saying that only Father God knew the date of His coming. Remember, Jesus Christ is both God and Man. As God, He knew the future, but, as a Man, Jesus could honestly say He did not know when His Second Coming would occur. Luke 2:40,52 say He learned just like we learn. This is not a detraction of His Deity; it is an emphasis on His Humanity (which we should never ignore either). “And the child grew, and waxed strong in spirit, filled with wisdom: and the grace of God was upon him…. And Jesus increased in wisdom and stature, and in favour with God and man.”

Also see:
» Did Jesus ever claim to be God?
» Does God suffer from Alzheimer’s disease?
» Why did God ask where Adam was?

How does the LORD “dwell in the thick darkness?”

HOW DOES THE LORD “DWELL IN THE THICK DARKNESS?”

by Shawn Brasseaux

We read this expression twice in a King James Bible. “Then spake Solomon, The LORD said that he would dwell in the thick darkness (1 Kings 8:12). “Then said Solomon, The LORD hath said that he would dwell in the thick darkness(2 Chronicles 6:1). In what sense does God “dwell in the thick darkness?”

Back when God appeared to the nation Israel at Mount Sinai, Scripture states the following: “And the LORD said unto Moses, Lo, I come unto thee in a thick cloud, that the people may hear when I speak with thee, and believe thee for ever. And Moses told the words of the people unto the LORD” (Exodus 19:9). Also, Exodus 20:21: “And the people stood afar off, and Moses drew near unto the thick darkness where God was.” This was repeated 40 years later, in Deuteronomy. “And ye came near and stood under the mountain; and the mountain burned with fire unto the midst of heaven, with darkness, clouds, and thick darkness(Deuteronomy 4:11). “These words the LORD spake unto all your assembly in the mount out of the midst of the fire, of the cloud, and of the thick darkness, with a great voice: and he added no more. And he wrote them in two tables of stone, and delivered them unto me” (Deuteronomy 5:22). Finally, Leviticus 16:2: “And the LORD said unto Moses, Speak unto Aaron thy brother, that he come not at all times into the holy place within the vail before the mercy seat, which is upon the ark; that he die not: for I will appear in the cloud upon the mercy seat.”

When God manifested His presence to ancient Israel, it was in the form of a shadowy cloud. It may help us to think of it as resembling a fog, mist, or haze. This is the “Shekinah glory” (“dwelling glory”) as found above the Mercy Seat, the lid of the Ark of the Covenant, that sat in the innermost room of the Tabernacle. Go to Exodus chapter 40: “[34] Then a cloud covered the tent of the congregation, and the glory of the LORD filled the tabernacle. [35] And Moses was not able to enter into the tent of the congregation, because the cloud abode thereon, and the glory of the LORD filled the tabernacle. [36] And when the cloud was taken up from over the tabernacle, the children of Israel went onward in all their journeys: [37] But if the cloud were not taken up, then they journeyed not till the day that it was taken up. [38] For the cloud of the LORD was upon the tabernacle by day, and fire was on it by night, in the sight of all the house of Israel, throughout all their journeys.” (See also Exodus 25:22; Leviticus 16:2; 2 Samuel 6:2; 2 Kings 19:14-15; Psalm 80:1; Isaiah 37:16; Ezekiel 9:3; Ezekiel 10:18; Hebrews 9:5.)

Returning to King Solomon’s words as found at the beginning of our study, we understand they are made in relation to his Temple in Jerusalem. You can read 1 Kings chapters 5–7 and 2 Chronicles chapters 2–4 for all the details. After its completion, Solomon dedicated the edifice with a speech to the people and a prayer to the LORD. Whereas the LORD had been abiding with Israel in the Tabernacle, now Solomon besought Him to move into a new house. “Then spake Solomon, The LORD said that he would dwell in the thick darkness. I have surely built thee an house to dwell in, a settled place for thee to abide in for ever” (1 Kings 8:12-13). “Then said Solomon, The LORD hath said that he would dwell in the thick darkness. But I have built an house of habitation for thee, and a place for thy dwelling for ever” (2 Chronicles 6:1-2).

The LORD most certainly approved of Solomon’s Temple, as recorded in 2 Chronicles chapter 5: “[13] It came even to pass, as the trumpeters and singers were as one, to make one sound to be heard in praising and thanking the LORD; and when they lifted up their voice with the trumpets and cymbals and instruments of musick, and praised the LORD, saying, For he is good; for his mercy endureth for ever: that then the house was filled with a cloud, even the house of the LORD; [14] So that the priests could not stand to minister by reason of the cloud: for the glory of the LORD had filled the house of God.”

Also see:
» Why was the Temple’s veil rent when Christ died?
» How could Jonah flee from God’s presence?
» Can you explain Luke 18:13, “God be merciful to me a sinner?”

How could Jonah flee from God’s presence?

HOW COULD JONAH FLEE FROM GOD’S PRESENCE?

by Shawn Brasseaux

The Book of Jonah opens: “[1] Now the word of the LORD came unto Jonah the son of Amittai, saying, [2] Arise, go to Nineveh, that great city, and cry against it; for their wickedness is come up before me. [3] But Jonah rose up to flee unto Tarshish from the presence of the LORD, and went down to Joppa; and he found a ship going to Tarshish: so he paid the fare thereof, and went down into it, to go with them unto Tarshish from the presence of the LORD. [4] But the LORD sent out a great wind into the sea, and there was a mighty tempest in the sea, so that the ship was like to be broken.”

According to Psalm 139, the God of the Bible is omnipresent (“ever-present,” everywhere): “[7] Whither shall I go from thy spirit? or whither shall I flee from thy presence? [8] If I ascend up into heaven, thou art there: if I make my bed in hell, behold, thou art there. [9] If I take the wings of the morning, and dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea; [10] Even there shall thy hand lead me, and thy right hand shall hold me.”

“But Jonah rose up to flee unto Tarshish from the presence of the LORD, and went down to Joppa… to go with them unto Tarshish from the presence of the LORD” (Jonah 1:3). How could Jonah actually believe he could flee from God’s presence? Wherever he would go, would not God be there? Yes, but “presence” here takes on a distinctive meaning. Since JEHOVAH God is God, He is indeed everywhere. Also, since He is God, He can choose to manifest His Person in a unique way at a specific place. Such is the case of the Jerusalem Temple, and the “Shekinah” (“that which dwells”) glory of God.

About 920 B.C., King Solomon dedicated the Temple in Jerusalem centuries prior to Jonah, as 1 Kings chapter 8 reports: “[10] And it came to pass, when the priests were come out of the holy place, that the cloud filled the house of the LORD, [11] So that the priests could not stand to minister because of the cloud: for the glory of the LORD had filled the house of the LORD. [12] Then spake Solomon, The LORD said that he would dwell in the thick darkness. [13] I have surely built thee an house to dwell in, a settled place for thee to abide in for ever.” Did you see how God is manifesting His Person in the Temple—and it is called His “house?” In “time past,” no other nation but Israel had such a place and a God as this (Romans 9:4-5; Ephesians 2:11-12)!

In Jonah’s time, Solomon’s Temple is still functioning in Jerusalem. Jonah lived at least 750 B.C. (2 Kings 14:25)—possibly a century earlier. Until the Babylonian Captivity (beginning 606 B.C.), God’s presence is in the Jerusalem Temple. Jonah was fleeing from the land of Palestine wherein was the Temple, the place God had chosen to manifest His glory at that particular time. Even so, as the rest of the Book of Jonah bears out, God found Jonah hiding aboard that ship in the Mediterranean Sea and fleeing to Tarshish (Spain?). He caused a great sea storm that played a significant role in Jonah’s correction.

Once the Prophet Jonah was reformed, he prayed to God out of the fish’s belly: “Then I said, I am cast out of thy sight; yet I will look again toward thy holy temple (Jonah 2:4). “When my soul fainted within me I remembered the LORD: and my prayer came in unto thee, into thine holy temple(Jonah 2:7). Jonah is now focused on the Jerusalem Temple, mindful of the LORD who lives there, and ready to preach to Nineveh as He instructed!

Also see:
» Did Jonah live in the whale’s belly?
» What swallowed Jonah—a fish or a whale?
» How can God hear all the prayers of all Christians?

Does God suffer from Alzheimer’s disease?

DOES GOD SUFFER FROM ALZHEIMER’S DISEASE?

by Shawn Brasseaux

According to the American National Institutes of Health, Alzheimer’s disease is “an irreversible, progressive brain disorder that slowly destroys memory and thinking skills, and, eventually, the ability to carry out the simplest tasks.” It is absolutely ironic to find Bible verses that describe God “remembering” Israel’s sins and other verses that speak of Him “not remembering” them. After all, is He not omniscient? Does He not know everything? Then how should we handle these passages? Does Alzheimer’s disease afflict God’s mind? “For what saith the Scriptures?”

GOD REMEMBERING ISRAEL’S SINS

  • Jeremiah 14:10: “Thus saith the LORD unto this people, Thus have they loved to wander, they have not refrained their feet, therefore the LORD doth not accept them; he will now remember their iniquity, and visit their sins.”
  • Hosea 8:13: “They sacrifice flesh for the sacrifices of mine offerings, and eat it; but the LORD accepteth them not; now will he remember their iniquity, and visit their sins: they shall return to Egypt.”
  • Hosea 9:9: “They have deeply corrupted themselves, as in the days of Gibeah: therefore he will remember their iniquity, he will visit their sins.”

Here, the LORD God certainly brings Israel’s sins to mind. He will not let them escape the consequences of their breaking the Old Covenant. Curses or punishments must follow, as per Deuteronomy chapter 28: “[14] And thou shalt not go aside from any of the words which I command thee this day, to the right hand, or to the left, to go after other gods to serve them. [15] But it shall come to pass, if thou wilt not hearken unto the voice of the LORD thy God, to observe to do all his commandments and his statutes which I command thee this day; that all these curses shall come upon thee, and overtake thee:….”

GOD NOT REMEMBERING ISRAEL’S SINS

  • Isaiah 43:25: “I, even I, am he that blotteth out thy transgressions for mine own sake, and will not remember thy sins.”
  • Jeremiah 31:34: “And they shall teach no more every man his neighbour, and every man his brother, saying, Know the LORD: for they shall all know me, from the least of them unto the greatest of them, saith the LORD: for I will forgive their iniquity, and I will remember their sin no more.”
  • Hebrews 8:12: “For I will be merciful to their unrighteousness, and their sins and their iniquities will I remember no more.”
  • Hebrews 10:17: “And their sins and iniquities will I remember no more.”

While Israel broke the Old Covenant with her repeated idolatry, God will make another agreement with her. This is the New Covenant first promised in Jeremiah 31:31-34, and repeated in the Book of Hebrews (chapters 8 and 10). Yet, how can God simply overlook Israel’s transgressions? What does He do with those sins? He cannot just pretend like they are not there, like they never occurred. Why, He does not remember those sins because He places them under the shed blood of Jesus Christ! Once He ratifies the New Covenant at Christ’s Second Coming (Romans 11:25-29), He will not see Israel’s sins but rather Christ’s righteousness applied to their national account! Instead of concentrating on Israel’s filthy past, He will focus on them washed in the blood of Christ!

Hebrews chapter 10 pronounces: “[1] For the law having a shadow of good things to come, and not the very image of the things, can never with those sacrifices which they offered year by year continually make the comers thereunto perfect. [2] For then would they not have ceased to be offered? because that the worshippers once purged should have had no more conscience of sins. [3] But in those sacrifices there is a remembrance again made of sins every year. [4] For it is not possible that the blood of bulls and of goats should take away sins.

“[5] Wherefore when he cometh into the world, he saith, Sacrifice and offering thou wouldest not, but a body hast thou prepared me: [6] In burnt offerings and sacrifices for sin thou hast had no pleasure. [7] Then said I, Lo, I come (in the volume of the book it is written of me,) to do thy will, O God. [8] Above when he said, Sacrifice and offering and burnt offerings and offering for sin thou wouldest not, neither hadst pleasure therein; which are offered by the law; [9] Then said he, Lo, I come to do thy will, O God. He taketh away the first, that he may establish the second. [10] By the which will we are sanctified through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once for all. 

“[11] And every priest standeth daily ministering and offering oftentimes the same sacrifices, which can never take away sins: [12] But this man, after he had offered one sacrifice for sins for ever, sat down on the right hand of God; [13] From henceforth expecting till his enemies be made his footstool. [14] For by one offering he hath perfected for ever them that are sanctified. [15] Whereof the Holy Ghost also is a witness to us: for after that he had said before, [16] This is the covenant that I will make with them after those days, saith the Lord, I will put my laws into their hearts, and in their minds will I write them; [17] And their sins and iniquities will I remember no more.

“[18] Now where remission of these is, there is no more offering for sin. [19] Having therefore, brethren, boldness to enter into the holiest by the blood of Jesus, [20] By a new and living way, which he hath consecrated for us, through the veil, that is to say, his flesh; [21] And having an high priest over the house of God; [22] Let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled from an evil conscience, and our bodies washed with pure water.”

Saints, please remember us in your monthly giving—these websites do cost money to run! 🙂 You can donate securely here: https://www.paypal.me/ShawnBrasseaux, or email me at arcministries@gmail.com. Do not forget about Bible Q&A booklets for sale at https://arcgraceministries.org/in-print/booklets-bible-q-a/. Thanks to all who give to and pray for us! By the way, ministry emails have really been backed up this year. I am handling them as much as humanly possible. Thanks for your patience. 🙂

Also see:
» Is God finished with the nation Israel?
» Are we under the New Covenant today?
» Does the New Covenant take away Israel’s free will?

Why does the Bible say, “Have no other gods before Me?”

WHY DOES THE BIBLE SAY, “HAVE NO OTHER GODS BEFORE ME?” ARE THERE OTHER GODS? I THOUGHT THERE WAS ONLY ONE GOD?

by Shawn Brasseaux

The First Commandment, Exodus 20:3,: “Thou shalt have no other gods before me.” (These “other gods” appear some 60 times in the King James Bible.) It is the adjective “other” that causes people to stumble. If Judaism and Christianity are both monotheistic—adherents worshipping and serving one God—then why would the Judeo-Christian Bible speak of “other gods?”

Simply put, sin causes counterfeit gods or usurpers to creation’s throne. These are those “gods” (lowercase “g” not capital “G!”). In this world, innumerable ideas and individuals are competing for the loyalty we owe to the Creator God alone. What we have to be most cautious about is ourselves—we want to worship and serve self, to be our own god, our own authority. That is what sin is. Romans 1:25 describes this as such: “Who changed the truth of God into a lie, and worshipped and served the creature more than the Creator, who is blessed for ever. Amen.” And, Isaiah 53:6: “All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned every one to his own way….”

The “other gods” of which the Scriptures speak are idols that actually represent evil spirits (fallen angels). Gentiles, the nations, were given over to this heathenism back at the Tower of Babel (Genesis chapters 9–11, especially 11; cf. Romans 1:18-32). The evil spirits behind the idols rebelled against the Creator God when Lucifer (Satan) rebelled. They are connected to the heavenly bodies, which is why Deuteronomy 17:2-3 says to Israel: “[2] If there be found among you, within any of thy gates which the LORD thy God giveth thee, man or woman, that hath wrought wickedness in the sight of the LORD thy God, in transgressing his covenant, [3] And hath gone and served other gods, and worshipped them, either the sun, or moon, or any of the host of heaven, which I have not commanded;….” Worshipping and serving the idols of wood or stone, or the heavenly bodies, is a form of aligning with the evil spirits that the idols and heavenly bodies represent. Hence, JEHOVAH God forbade the Israelites from engaging in the heathen religion of their Gentile neighbors. “Ye shall not go after other gods, of the gods of the people which are round about you;…” (Deuteronomy 6:14).

It is important to know that Satan himself heads the universe’s current rebellion against the Creator, the Lord Jesus Christ. Therefore, Satan is rightfully called “the god of this world” (2 Corinthians 4:4). It is ultimately he who is worshipped and served when the Creator God is neither worshipped nor served.

Also see:
» Why does God let Satan exist?
» Why are the heavens not clean in God’s sight?
» Where in the Bible did God give Satan domain over the Earth?

Was Jesus’ last name “Christ?”

WAS JESUS’ LAST NAME “CHRIST?”

by Shawn Brasseaux

No. “Christ” was not Jesus’ last name but rather an office He holds (see #6 in the ensuing list). He is Father God’s “Anointed” (Hebrew, “Mashiyach;” Aramaic, “Messiah;” Greek, “Christos;” English, “Christ”)—see Psalm 2:2, Acts 4:26, and John 1:41. The idea here is being ordained to serve in a specific capacity. Jewish kings, priests, and prophets were “anointed” (smeared, dabbed) with olive oil before they were allowed to discharge the duties of their respective offices (Exodus 29:7; 1 Samuel 16:13; 1 Kings 19:16; et cetera). Likewise, Father God poured out the Holy Spirit on the Lord Jesus at His water baptism, “anointing” Him to serve as Prophet, Priest, and King (see Matthew 3:16-17; Acts 10:38; Hebrews 1:8-9; Psalm 45:6-7; Isaiah 61:1-2; Luke 4:18; Acts 4:27).

Considering the cultures and times of Bible characters, they do not have “last names” as we do. So as to distinguish individuals who had a common first name, various qualifiers were affixed (although there are some exceptions, and these make it impossible to separate people). This too makes a fascinating study, as we will see now.

  1. The father’s name or mother’s name was attached to their own name. We can think of “James and John the sons of Zebedee” (Luke 5:10), “Gomer the daughter of Diblaim” (Hosea 1:3), “Joshua the son of Nun” (Joshua 1:1), “Hosea the son of Beeri” (Hosea 1:1), “Adonijah the son of Haggith” (1 Kings 1:11), “Anna… the daughter of Phanuel” (Luke 2:36), “James the son of Alphaeus” (Mark 3:18), and so on. This was especially useful if a man had several wives; his children could be differentiated by their mother’s name. Also, if you noticed, there were two Apostles named James—one was the son of Zebedee and the other was the son of Alphaeus.
  2. Their wife’s name or husband’s name was added to their own name. “Mary the wife of Cleophas” (John 19:25), “Joseph the husband of Mary” (Matthew 1:16), “Deborah… the wife of Lapidoth” (Judges 4:17), “Abigail the wife of Nabal” (1 Samuel 30:5), and so on, fall in this nomenclature group.
  3. Their child’s name was incorporated into their own name. Examples include: “Mary the mother of Jesus” (Acts 1:14), “Mary the mother of John” (Acts 12:12), “Mary the mother of James the less and of Joses” (Mark 15:40), “Bathsheba the mother of Solomon” (1 Kings 1:11), “Terah, the father of Abraham, and the father of Nachor” (Joshua 24:2), “Athaliah the mother of Ahaziah” (2 Kings 11:1), “Machir the father of Gilead” (1 Chronicles 2:21), and so on. For example, this is helpful in distinguishing the various women in the New Testament that are known by the name Mary.
  4. Their birthplace, hometown, or current city was part of their name. Think of “Saul of Tarsus” (Acts 9:11), “Mary Magdalene” (from Magdala, northern Israel; Matthew 27:56), and “Jesus of Nazareth” (Mark 16:6). The Apostle “Simon the Canaanite” (from Cana, northern Israel; Matthew 10:4) is not to be confused with Simon Peter the Apostle, or Simon the sorcerer of Acts chapter 8. Note there were two Apostles named “Simon.” Furthermore, the Apostle “Judas Iscariot” (“Iscariot” meaning “man from Kerioth,” southern Israel; Mark 3:19) is not the same as the Apostle “Judas the brother of James” (Acts 1:13).
  5. Their brother’s name or sister’s name was part of their own name. “Nahor, Abraham’s brother” (Genesis 24:15), “Laban… the brother of Rebekah” (Genesis 28:5), “James the brother of John” (Acts 12:2), “Shem… the brother of Japheth” (Genesis 10:21), “James the Lord’s brother” (Galatians 1:19), “Miriam… the sister of Aaron” (Exodus 15:20), and so on, are examples of this title.
  6. Their occupation or function was part of their name. “Simon a tanner” (Acts 10:32), “Chuza Herod’s steward” (Luke 8:3), “Cyrus king of Persia” (Ezra 1:3), “Matthew the publican [tax collector]” (Matthew 10:3), “Alexander the coppersmith” (2 Timothy 4:14), and “Erastus the chamberlain [treasurer] of the city” (Romans 16:23) are just a few instances.
  7. Their tribe or nationality was part of their name. “Ehu the son of Gera, a Benjamite” (Judges 3:15), “Hagar the Egyptian” (Genesis 21:9), “Anna… of the tribe of Aser” (Luke 2:36), “Ephron the Hittite” (Genesis 49:29), and “Laban the Syrian” (Genesis 31:20), and “Goliath the Gittite” (1 Chronicles 20:5) are some examples of this category.
  8. They occasionally had a second name or “nickname.” For example, “John Mark” (Acts 12:12) is to be distinguished from “John Baptist” (Matthew 14:8) and John the Apostle (Matthew 10:2). We cannot forget the Apostles “Simon Peter” and “Lebbaeus Thaddaeus” (Matthew 10:2-3). The man “Joseph called Barsabas, who was surnamed Justus” (Acts 1:23) is not to be confused with other men named Joseph or Justus.

Also see:
» Who was the father of the Prophet Zechariah?
» Does Matthew 1:11 contain errors?
» Does Matthew 1:12 contain an error?
» Is the Bible wrong to call Nebuchadnezzar the “father” of Belshazzar?

How is Jesus Christ “Prophet, Priest, and King?”

HOW IS JESUS CHRIST “PROPHET, PRIEST, AND KING?”

by Shawn Brasseaux

You have probably heard the expression—“Jesus Christ is Prophet, Priest, and King.” Is there a biblical basis for this? If so, what is its importance?

Hundreds of Old Testament Messianic promises foretold God’s “Anointed” (Hebrew, “Mashiyach;” Aramaic, “Messiah;” Greek, “Christos;” English, “Christ”). This special Man—the God-Man—would function in three specific capacities or roles. He would occupy the offices of Prophet, Priest, and King.

  • PROPHET/MESSENGER. Deuteronomy 18:15,18: “[15] The LORD thy God will raise up unto thee [Israel] a Prophet from the midst of thee, of thy brethren, like unto me; unto him ye shall hearken;…. [18] I will raise them up a Prophet from among their brethren, like unto thee, and will put my words in his mouth; and he shall speak unto them all that I shall command him (cf. Acts 3:22-23).
  • PRIEST/MEDIATOR. Zechariah 6:12-13: “[12] And speak unto him, saying, Thus speaketh the LORD of hosts, saying, Behold the man whose name is The BRANCH; and he shall grow up out of his place, and he shall build the temple of the LORD: [13] Even he shall build the temple of the LORD; and he shall bear the glory, and shall sit and rule upon his throne; and he shall be a priest upon his throne: and the counsel of peace shall be between them both.”
  • KING/MONARCH. Second Samuel 7:13-14: “[13] He shall build an house for my name, and I will stablish the throne of his kingdom for ever. [14] I will be his father, and he shall be my son. If he commit iniquity, I will chasten him with the rod of men, and with the stripes of the children of men:…” (cf. Hebrews 1:5).

According to Matthew chapter 12, Israel refused to have the Lord Jesus Christ serve them in all three offices.

  • PROPHET/MESSENGER. Matthew 12:41: “The men of Nineveh shall rise in judgment with this generation, and shall condemn it: because they repented at the preaching of Jonas [Jonah the Prophet]; and, behold, a greater than Jonas is here.” The Israelites believed they knew all there was to know about religious and spiritual matters, so Jesus’ preaching was of no importance to them. Proverbs 14:12: “There is a way which seemeth right unto a man, but the end thereof are the ways of death.”
  • PRIEST/MEDIATOR. Matthew 12:6: “But I say unto you, That in this place is one greater than the temple.” The Israelites did not think they needed a Saviour, believing rather they could access God through their own merits. Romans 10:1-3: “[1] Brethren, my heart’s desire and prayer to God for Israel is, that they might be saved. [2] For I bear them record that they have a zeal of God, but not according to knowledge. [3] For they being ignorant of God’s righteousness, and going about to establish their own righteousness, have not submitted themselves unto the righteousness of God.”
  • KING/MONARCH. Matthew 12:42: “The queen of the south shall rise up in the judgment with this generation, and shall condemn it: for she came from the uttermost parts of the earth to hear the wisdom of Solomon; and, behold, a greater than Solomon is here.” The Israelites were their own rulers, doing their own thing, throughly enjoying the path that they had chosen in life. Isaiah 53:6: “All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned every one to his own way; and the LORD hath laid on him the iniquity of us all.”

The Book of Hebrews applies all three offices to the Lord Jesus Christ. In spite of Israel’s rejection of Him, one day, He will still be Prophet, Priest, and King!

  • PROPHET/MESSENGER. Hebrews 1:1-2: “[1] God, who at sundry times and in divers manners spake in time past unto the fathers by the prophets, [2] Hath in these last days spoken unto us by his Son, whom he hath appointed heir of all things, by whom also he made the worlds;….”
  • PRIEST/MEDIATOR. Hebrews 3:1: “Wherefore, holy brethren, partakers of the heavenly calling, consider the Apostle and High Priest of our profession, Christ Jesus;….”
  • KING/MONARCH. Hebrews 1:8-9: “[8] But unto the Son he saith, Thy throne, O God, is for ever and ever: a sceptre of righteousness is the sceptre of thy kingdom. [9] Thou hast loved righteousness, and hated iniquity; therefore God, even thy God, hath anointed thee with the oil of gladness above thy fellows.”

SUPPLEMENTAL: KING DAVID, A THREE-FOLD TYPE OF CHRIST

Everyone familiar with the Bible understands David was king of Israel. Very few, however, realize he was also a prophet and a priest. David—as prophet, priest, and king—is a preview of the Lord Jesus Christ some 1,000 years in advance.

The ephod was a priestly garment that resembled a vest. Even though he was not a priest by blood (David was from the tribe of Judah and not the priestly tribe of Levi), David wore an ephod when praising the LORD. “And David danced before the LORD with all his might; and David was girded with a linen ephod” (2 Samuel 6:14). “And David was clothed with a robe of fine linen, and all the Levites that bare the ark, and the singers, and Chenaniah the master of the song with the singers: David also had upon him an ephod of linen” (1 Chronicles 15:27). David even offered animal sacrifices as a priest would. “And the king said unto Araunah, Nay; but I will surely buy it of thee at a price: neither will I offer burnt offerings unto the LORD my God of that which doth cost me nothing. So David bought the threshingfloor and the oxen for fifty shekels of silver. And David built there an altar unto the LORD, and offered burnt offerings and peace offerings. So the LORD was intreated for the land, and the plague was stayed from Israel” (2 Samuel 24:24-25).

David, as the Holy Spirit moved him, wrote nearly half of the Book of Psalms. “Now these be the last words of David. David the son of Jesse said, and the man who was raised up on high, the anointed of the God of Jacob, and the sweet psalmist of Israel, said, The Spirit of the LORD spake by me, and his word was in my tongue” (2 Samuel 23:1-2). He spoke for God, and is thus called a “prophet.” Acts 2:29-31: “Men and brethren, let me freely speak unto you of the patriarch David, that he is both dead and buried, and his sepulchre is with us unto this day. Therefore being a prophet, and knowing that God had sworn with an oath to him, that of the fruit of his loins, according to the flesh, he would raise up Christ to sit on his throne; He seeing this before spake of the resurrection of Christ, that his soul was not left in hell, neither his flesh did see corruption.”

By the way, when King Saul attempted to usurp the priest’s office by sacrificing a burnt offering, God took the kingdom from him and gave it to David (1 Samuel 13:8-14)!

Also see:
» Who will be Israel’s King in the Millennium—Jesus Christ or David?
» Why did Jesus forbid others from preaching that He was Christ?
» How is Jesus Christ the “firstborn” of every creature?
» How can Jesus Christ be a priest if He is of the non-priestly tribe of Judah?

Why is Jesus called “the Son of Man?”

WHY IS JESUS CALLED “THE SON OF MAN?” DOES THAT MEAN HE WAS A MERE MAN, AND NOT GOD?

by Shawn Brasseaux

The title appears some 210 times in the Holy Bible. Just under half of those occurrences—93 to be exact—are God addressing the Prophet Ezekiel himself. One verse applies it to Daniel the Prophet (8:17). Most of the instances of “the Son of Man” concern the Lord Jesus Christ Himself. Occurring 81 times in the Books of Matthew through John, it is actually His preferred self-designation. Why is Jesus called “the Son of Man?” Does that mean, as sometimes assumed, that He is not God? What is the significance of the appellation, especially as it relates to Jesus Christ?

Of course, at the bare minimum, the expression “the Son of Man” highlights one’s humanity. Certain Bible passages make this apparent, especially those in Ezekiel and Daniel (as stated earlier). Moreover, “man” and “son of man” are nearly synonymous in Isaiah 56:2; Jeremiah 49:18,33; Jeremiah 50:40; and Jeremiah 51:43. (There is a subtle difference, and we will delineate it in this study.) The term is also applied to a human when being compared to Almighty God. Let us look at a few sample verses.

“God is not a man, that he should lie; neither the son of man, that he should repent: hath he said, and shall he not do it? or hath he spoken, and shall he not make it good?” (Numbers 23:19). “How then can man be justified with God? or how can he be clean that is born of a woman? Behold even to the moon, and it shineth not; yea, the stars are not pure in his sight. How much less man, that is a worm? and the son of man, which is a worm?” (Job 25:4-6).

“Put not your trust in princes, nor in the son of man, in whom there is no help…. Happy is he that hath the God of Jacob for his help, whose hope is in the LORD his God” (Psalm 146:3,5). “And I gave my heart to seek and search out by wisdom concerning all things that are done under heaven: this sore travail hath God given to the sons of man to be exercised therewith” (Ecclesiastes 1:13). “I, even I, am he that comforteth you: who art thou, that thou shouldest be afraid of a man that shall die, and of the son of man which shall be made as grass” (Isaiah 51:12).

Two key Bible passages identify the significance of the title “Son of man.” The first is Psalm 8: “[1] O LORD, our Lord, how excellent is thy name in all the earth! who hast set thy glory above the heavens. [2] Out of the mouth of babes and sucklings hast thou ordained strength because of thine enemies, that thou mightest still the enemy and the avenger. [3] When I consider thy heavens, the work of thy fingers, the moon and the stars, which thou hast ordained; [4] What is man, that thou art mindful of him? and the son of man, that thou visitest him?

“[5] For thou hast made him a little lower than the angels, and hast crowned him with glory and honour. [6] Thou madest him to have dominion over the works of thy hands; thou hast put all things under his feet: [7] All sheep and oxen, yea, and the beasts of the field; [8] The fowl of the air, and the fish of the sea, and whatsoever passeth through the paths of the seas. [9] O LORD our Lord, how excellent is thy name in all the earth!”

“Son of man” is associated with God appointing mankind—Adam and his children (us)—as His king or ruler over the Earth. It is man functioning in accordance with God’s will for him. We compare this to Genesis 1:26-28, the final day of the Creation Week before the first Sabbath: “[26] 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. [28] And God blessed them, and God said unto them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth, and subdue it: and have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over every living thing that moveth upon the earth.”

The Book of Hebrews provides us with even more light. Read chapter 1: “[1] God, who at sundry times and in divers manners spake in time past unto the fathers by the prophets, [2] Hath in these last days spoken unto us by his Son, whom he hath appointed heir of all things, by whom also he made the worlds; [3] Who being the brightness of his glory, and the express image of his person, and upholding all things by the word of his power, when he had by himself purged our sins, sat down on the right hand of the Majesty on high; [4] Being made so much better than the angels, as he hath by inheritance obtained a more excellent name than they. [5] For unto which of the angels said he at any time, Thou art my Son, this day have I begotten thee? And again, I will be to him a Father, and he shall be to me a Son? [6] And again, when he bringeth in the firstbegotten into the world, he saith, And let all the angels of God worship him. [7] And of the angels he saith, Who maketh his angels spirits, and his ministers a flame of fire.

“[8] But unto the Son he saith, Thy throne, O God, is for ever and ever: a sceptre of righteousness is the sceptre of thy kingdom. [9] Thou hast loved righteousness, and hated iniquity; therefore God, even thy God, hath anointed thee with the oil of gladness above thy fellows. [10] And, Thou, Lord, in the beginning hast laid the foundation of the earth; and the heavens are the works of thine hands: [11] They shall perish; but thou remainest; and they all shall wax old as doth a garment; [12] And as a vesture shalt thou fold them up, and they shall be changed: but thou art the same, and thy years shall not fail. [13] But to which of the angels said he at any time, Sit on my right hand, until I make thine enemies thy footstool? [14] Are they not all ministering spirits, sent forth to minister for them who shall be heirs of salvation?”

Now, Hebrews chapter 2, the second passage: “[5] For unto the angels hath he not put in subjection the world to come, whereof we speak. [6] But one in a certain place testified, saying, What is man, that thou art mindful of him? or the son of man that thou visitest him? [7] Thou madest him a little lower than the angels; thou crownedst him with glory and honour, and didst set him over the works of thy hands: [8] Thou hast put all things in subjection under his feet. For in that he put all in subjection under him, he left nothing that is not put under him. But now we see not yet all things put under him. [9] But we see Jesus, who was made a little lower than the angels for the suffering of death, crowned with glory and honour; that he by the grace of God should taste death for every man. [10] For it became him, for whom are all things, and by whom are all things, in bringing many sons unto glory, to make the captain of their salvation perfect through sufferings.”

Under the Holy Spirit’s guidance, the writer of Hebrews applied Psalm 8 to the Lord Jesus Christ. What Adam and his children failed to do because of sin, Jesus Christ will do for Father God’s glory. In the Garden of Eden, Adam handed over to Satan his political authority in the Earth (Genesis chapter 3). Satan thus boasted of his earthly power: “Again, the devil taketh him [Jesus] up into an exceeding high mountain, and sheweth him all the kingdoms of the world, and the glory of them; And saith unto him, All these things will I give thee, if thou wilt fall down and worship me. Then saith Jesus unto him, Get thee hence, Satan: for it is written, Thou shalt worship the Lord thy God, and him only shalt thou serve. Then the devil leaveth him, and, behold, angels came and ministered unto him” (Matthew 4:8-11).

Here is a great Bible theme: just as Adam is the federal head of the human race (leading to condemnation), so Christ is the federal head of a new human race (leading to justification). Read all of Romans chapter 5. See 1 Corinthians 15:45-47, which also compares Christ and Adam: “[45] And so it is written, The first man Adam was made a living soul; the last Adam was made a quickening spirit. [46] Howbeit that was not first which is spiritual, but that which is natural; and afterward that which is spiritual. [47] The first man is of the earth, earthy: the second man is the Lord from heaven.” It is expected that, in order to head the new human race, Jesus Christ’s humanity or relation to Adam must be stressed (although He is certainly God as well—verse 47 in a King James Bible, unlike the modern English versions, says He is “the Lord [JEHOVAH God] from heaven”).

Again, Jesus Christ will accomplish what sinful Adam refused to do. Christ will reign in the Earth for Father God’s glory, functioning as Father God’s King of the Earth. Read Daniel chapter 7: “[13] I saw in the night visions, and, behold, one like the Son of man came with the clouds of heaven, and came to the Ancient of days, and they brought him near before him. [14] And there was given him dominion, and glory, and a kingdom, that all people, nations, and languages, should serve him: his dominion is an everlasting dominion, which shall not pass away, and his kingdom that which shall not be destroyed.” Here is Jesus Christ approaching the throne of Father God, the Father anointing Him as King. This loops back to Hebrews chapter 1 (which also ties together Psalm 2, Psalm 45, Psalm 104, Psalm 97, Psalm 110, and so on). This will all occur at Christ’s Second Coming in Revelation chapter 19, Christ actually reigning in chapter 20.

It is also important to note that, when Jesus presented Himself to Israel as her King—as Earth’s King—Israel refused Him. She preferred to have Satan continue ruling her! “And Jesus saith unto him, The foxes have holes, and the birds of the air have nests; but the Son of man hath not where to lay his head” (Matthew 8:20). “And Jesus said unto him, Foxes have holes, and birds of the air have nests; but the Son of man hath not where to lay his head” (Luke 9:58). Matthew 8:20 is the first occurrence of the title in the New Testament Scriptures. The term appears one final time in the Bible in Revelation 14:14: “And I looked, and behold a white cloud, and upon the cloud one sat like unto the Son of man, having on his head a golden crown, and in his hand a sharp sickle.” Notice again the “crown,” His right to reign as King!

We will now look at various other supplementary verses to reinforce our understanding thus far. Remember, the term “Son of Man” as touching Jesus Christ deals with His governmental authority, His Kingship, His political power or might, His God-given right to be Ruler over creation.

  • Matthew 13:41: The Son of man shall send forth his angels, and they shall gather out of his kingdom all things that offend, and them which do iniquity;….”
  • Matthew 16:27-28: “[27] For the Son of man shall come in the glory of his Father with his angels; and then he shall reward every man according to his works. [28] Verily I say unto you, There be some standing here, which shall not taste of death, till they see the Son of man coming in his kingdom.”
  • Matthew 19:28: “And Jesus said unto them, Verily I say unto you, That ye which have followed me, in the regeneration when the Son of man shall sit in the throne of his glory, ye also shall sit upon twelve thrones, judging the twelve tribes of Israel.”
  • Matthew 24:30: “And then shall appear the sign of the Son of man in heaven: and then shall all the tribes of the earth mourn, and they shall see the Son of man coming in the clouds of heaven with power and great glory.”
  • Matthew 25:31: “When the Son of man shall come in his glory, and all the holy angels with him, then shall he sit upon the throne of his glory:….”
  • Matthew 26:64: “Jesus saith unto him, Thou hast said: nevertheless I say unto you, Hereafter shall ye see the Son of man sitting on the right hand of power, and coming in the clouds of heaven.”
  • Mark 13:26: “And then shall they see the Son of man coming in the clouds with great power and glory.”
  • Mark 14:62: “And Jesus said, I am: and ye shall see the Son of man sitting on the right hand of power, and coming in the clouds of heaven.”
  • Luke 21:27: “And then shall they see the Son of man coming in a cloud with power and great glory.”
  • Luke 22:69: “Hereafter shall the Son of man sit on the right hand of the power of God.”
  • John 1:51: “And he saith unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Hereafter ye shall see heaven open, and the angels of God ascending and descending upon the Son of man.”
  • John 5:27: “And hath given him authority to execute judgment also, because he is the Son of man.”
  • Acts 7:56: “And said, Behold, I see the heavens opened, and the Son of man standing on the right hand of God.”

Lest there be any misunderstanding, we close with an important remark. Never should we suppose that Jesus calling Himself “the Son of Man” is in any way a denial of His Deity. He is both “the Son of God” and “the Son of Man”undiminished Deity and full humanity. Actually, He used the term “the Son of Man” in the very same sentence He claimed to be God in human flesh. “For the Son of man is Lord even of the sabbath day” (Matthew 12:8). “Therefore the Son of man is Lord also of the sabbath” (Mark 2:28). “And he said unto them, That the Son of man is Lord also of the sabbath” (Luke 6:5). The Greek word for “Lord” here is “kurios;” the Hebrew equivalent is “Jehovah” (“LORD” of the Old Testament). Even as the Son of Man, Jesus also claimed to be the JEHOVAH God who created everything and then rested on that first Sabbath Day (Genesis 2:1-3)!

Also see:
» Did Jesus ever claim to be God?
» Why is Jesus Christ called “the Word of God?”
» Was God “unfair” to punish us for Adam’s sin?

Can you explain Job 32:8?

CAN YOU EXPLAIN JOB 32:8?

by Shawn Brasseaux

Could you shed light on Job 32:8? “But there is a spirit in man: and the inspiration of the Almighty giveth them understanding.”

The Book of Job details the experiences of a materially prosperous saint, Job, whom Satan has chosen to target with extreme hardship and loss (chapters 1 and 2). Job’s three “friends”—Eliphaz, Bildad, and Zophar—are much older than his father (Job 15:10). These aged men come to “comfort” Job during this time of his great distress. Chapters 3–31 contain their speculations as to why he is suffering, and Job’s responses to each. Essentially, they all agree against Job that he is a sinner and deserves his troubles. Their exchange deteriorates into a contest of name-calling and other insults. Of all those words spoken, nothing meaningful is actually accomplished. No light has been shed concerning Job’s plight!

By the time of chapter 32, a new character enters. This fourth friend of Job, Elihu, takes the discussion in a whole new direction: “[1] So these three men ceased to answer Job, because he was righteous in his own eyes. [2] Then was kindled the wrath of Elihu the son of Barachel the Buzite, of the kindred of Ram: against Job was his wrath kindled, because he justified himself rather than God. [3] Also against his three friends was his wrath kindled, because they had found no answer, and yet had condemned Job. [4] Now Elihu had waited till Job had spoken, because they were elder than he. [5] When Elihu saw that there was no answer in the mouth of these three men, then his wrath was kindled. [6] And Elihu the son of Barachel the Buzite answered and said, I am young, and ye are very old; wherefore I was afraid, and durst not shew you mine opinion. [7] I said, Days should speak, and multitude of years should teach wisdom. [8] But there is a spirit in man: and the inspiration of the Almighty giveth them understanding. [9] Great men are not always wise: neither do the aged understand judgment. [10] Therefore I said, Hearken to me; I also will shew mine opinion.”

Note that Job 32:8 actually serves as key support for Elihu’s advice (running all the way through to the end of chapter 37). While he lacks a great deal of insight into Job’s predicament, he has more wisdom than those three friends who have just rambled on and on with their religious traditions, vain philosophies, and baseless assumptions. In fact, as the following verses demonstrate, Elihu claims to be speaking to Job on God’s behalf.

Job 33:1-6: “[1] Wherefore, Job, I pray thee, hear my speeches, and hearken to all my words. [2] Behold, now I have opened my mouth, my tongue hath spoken in my mouth. [3] My words shall be of the uprightness of my heart: and my lips shall utter knowledge clearly. [4] The spirit of God hath made me, and the breath of the Almighty hath given me life. [5] If thou canst answer me, set thy words in order before me, stand up. [6] Behold, I am according to thy wish in God’s stead: I also am formed out of the clay.”

Continue with verses 29-33: “[29] Lo, all these things worketh God oftentimes with man, [30] To bring back his soul from the pit, to be enlightened with the light of the living. [31] Mark well, O Job, hearken unto me: hold thy peace, and I will speak. [32] If thou hast anything to say, answer me: speak, for I desire to justify thee. [33] If not, hearken unto me: hold thy peace, and I shall teach thee wisdom.”

Job 36:1-4: “[1] Elihu also proceeded, and said, [2] Suffer me a little, and I will shew thee that I have yet to speak on God’s behalf. [3] I will fetch my knowledge from afar, and will ascribe righteousness to my Maker. [4] For truly my words shall not be false: he that is perfect in knowledge is with thee.”

Again, Job 32:8 says, “But there is a spirit in man: and the inspiration of the Almighty giveth them understanding.” “God is a Spirit,” John 4:24 says. Not only has God given every person a spirit (starting with the first man Adam), He has given every person that same spiritual component to commune with Him. “And the LORD God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul” (Genesis 2:7). “The spirit of God hath made me, and the breath of the Almighty hath given me life” (Job 33:4). “All the while my breath is in me, and the spirit of God is in my nostrils” (Job 27:3). That spirit that God breathed into Adam—thus passing down to all men—is the means whereby we can connect with our Creator.

Once more, although spiritually immature, Elihu was willing to let the LORD God speak through him to Job to some degree. He wanted to actually be a consolation and beacon of truth to Job instead of attacking and berating him like those three “friends” had already done. Thus, Elihu counseled with Job in Job 32:8 (paraphrased): “Job, you have a spirit, so listen to what God the Holy Spirit has to tell you! Here is how you can gain comprehension into your tragic experiences.” Elihu speaks for the next six chapters.

If you read the rest of the Book of Job (chapters 38–42), you discover how God Himself finally speaks directly to Job and explains that an enemy (Satan) is active in creation. Yet, God reassures Job that He will conquer and destroy that adversary in due time. Concluding, the Book of Job has Job finally liberated from Satan’s oppression and doubly blessed of God. While beyond the scope of this study, suffice it to say that Job’s sufferings and deliverance provide comfort to Israel’s believing remnant as they suffer during the latter years of the Antichrist’s reign (cf. James 5:10-11; 1 Peter 4:19). The Book of Job has been preserved in the Bible record so that Israel of the future can learn what God is doing with them—and what Satan is doing to them. Like Job, they will also be delivered… to enter the Millennial Reign of Christ and be immensely blessed of God!

In closing, let us say more about the Bible itself. The word “inspiration” appears only one other time in the English (King James) Scriptures. Of course, that passage is 2 Timothy 3:16-17: All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness: That the man of God may be perfect, throughly furnished unto all good works.” In Greek, “given by inspiration of God” is one word—“theopneustos” (literally, “God breathed”). “Spirit,” “air,” “wind,” and “breath” are closely related in the Greek language. Therefore, the Bible is words God spoke forth or breathed out.

“Holy men of God spake as they were moved by the Holy Ghost” (2 Peter 1:21). Scripture is “every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of the LORD” (Deuteronomy 8:3; cf. Matthew 4:4). “The Holy Ghost by the mouth of David spake…” (Acts 1:16). “Have ye not read that which was spoken unto you by God, saying,…” (Matthew 22:31). The Psalmist in Psalm 119:13 spoke of the “judgments” (decrees, conclusions, laws) originating from God’s mouth: “With my lips have I declared all the judgments of thy mouth.”

Almighty God uttered “words,” not just thoughts. The Holy Spirit gave these inspired words to special men and He led them to write those Divine words. Either we believe this is the Bible’s origin (faith), or we do not (unbelief). There is no middle ground. Additionally, He gave those inspired words to preserve them throughout the centuries via a multiplicity of manuscript copies. We have those inspired, preserved words even now: in English, it is the King James Bible. That is, the Spirit of God can communicate with our spirit as we read the words on the pages of (inspired) Scripture. Again, Job 32:8: “But there is a spirit in man: and the inspiration of the Almighty giveth them understanding.”

Let us conclude with 1 Corinthians chapter 2: [9] But as it is written, Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love him. [10] But God hath revealed them unto us by his Spirit: for the Spirit searcheth all things, yea, the deep things of God. [11] For what man knoweth the things of a man, save the spirit of man which is in him? even so the things of God knoweth no man, but the Spirit of God. [12] Now we have received, not the spirit of the world, but the spirit which is of God; that we might know the things that are freely given to us of God. [13] Which things also we speak, not in the words which man’s wisdom teacheth, but which the Holy Ghost teacheth; comparing spiritual things with spiritual. [14] But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned. [15] But he that is spiritual judgeth all things, yet he himself is judged of no man. [16] For who hath known the mind of the Lord, that he may instruct him? but we have the mind of Christ.”

Also see:
» How does one know if he or she is maturing in the Word of God?
» What are some tips for faster spiritual growth?
» I have trusted Christ, so why do I see things in Scripture I have never noticed before?