2 - Les Feldick Bible Study Lesson 1 - Part 2 - Book 1 - Attributes of God

2: Lesson 1 Part 2 Book 1 – Attributes of God: Genesis 1:1-5

Through the Bible with Les Feldick

LESSON 1 * PART 2 * BOOK 1

Attributes of God

Genesis 1:1-5

Now we’re going to start with Genesis chapter 1:1 in this lesson, and we would invite you to take your Bible and follow along with us as we study God’s Word. As you study with us you might also take notes as the people here in the studio do, because it’s the only way to really get involved in Bible study. I trust that you don’t just read your Bible, because you have to learn how to study it, and I think that’s the reason the Lord constructed it the way He did. He did not just lay it out in 8th grade reading form, but rather all these little tidbits are buried, and you just have to compare Scripture with Scripture to dig them out.

Genesis 1:1

“In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth.”

We’ll be taking this rather slowly, in fact in our study format, Genesis is something that we take verse by verse. We will almost take it that slowly in the Book of Exodus, but there will be parts of the Old Testament that we will just skim over rather lightly. And then we’ll come back into a Book like Daniel, and take it pretty maticulously, then the four gospels, and when we get to the Book of Acts, I definitely teach that Book verse by verse, as well as all of Paul’s epistles. But for starters now let’s look at the very first verse in the Bible.

Genesis 1:1a

“In the beginning God…”

Now there’s where I usually stop. Like I said in the last lesson, we don’t know when in the beginning was, and I don’t concern myself whether it’s billions of years or if it’s thousands, I say it really doesn’t make that much difference, but what does make a difference is “WHO” started it all? GOD!

So in the beginning whenever it was, God started it all. Here we have the term of Deity spelled G-O-D in our English, but in the Hebrew it was Eloheim. And Eloheim in the Hebrew is a plural word. If you have a text in your Old Testament that refers to the pagan gods, plural, it’s the same Hebrew word only without the capitalization. It’s the small “e”- eloheim.And so it’s the Triune God of a plurality of persons. And I’m a stickler in that I am a firm believer in the Trinity, or the Triune God. God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit. Now always remember that none of them supercede, or are above one of the others. They are all co-equal. And we see this teaching throughout all of Scripture. Now, in the beginning, whenever it was, God, the Triune Godhead created… Now again, the word in the Hebrew is “Barah”, which means “called out of nothing”. I think this is so important. God didn’t start with something and then somehow rearrange it. He started with absolutely nothing but Himself. And out of that nothingness He called the universe into being.

Now when we get into the New Testament here in a little bit, I’m going to show you what person of the Godhead actually spoke the word and called it into being. But for here, as the Triune God spoke the word and out of nothing He created everything. The heavens as well as the earth. Now I think it’s rather interesting that way back here in the very first verse of Genesis before the nation of Israel has even been hinted at and before we have any idea of the call of this man Abraham, that God is already giving us a clue that throughout all of His dealings with you and I, as members of the human race, He’s going to constantly divide things between heaven and earth. Now, why would He do this? Genesis chapter 12.

As soon as Abraham is called out of Ur of the Chaldees, as I showed on the timeline in our last program, God separated him from that mainstream of humanity and promises that out of that one man will come a distinctive race and nation of people – the nation of Israel. But here’s what makes them distinctive. From the very onset of the promise to Abraham until the nation is finally dispersed after they had rejected their king, Israel had it constantly drummed into their mindset that they were a special, called out, separated, covenant people of God,and all their promises are earthly. And so we refer to them as God’s earthly people.

Now, the last time I taught this someone misunderstood me and when I said that there is nothing in the Old Testament pertaining to a Jew dying and going to heaven. Well, what I really meant was, concerning his eternal abode. Now, we know that when an Old Testament saint died he went to Paradise. He certainly didn’t stay on the earth. And even today when a Jew dies he goes to his place of reward. If he’s a believer he goes to Paradise. But what I have in mind when I say that the Jew who had no concept of dying and going to heaven, I meant in their resurrected state. When the Jews experience their resurrection as believers, they will not be a heavenly people, they are going to be an earthly people, in that earthly 1000 years kingdom that is still future. And so consequently, even in their life in the flesh, all of Israel’s promises were earthly.

And that’s why so many of them had such tremendous wealth. Abraham was a wealthy man. Isaac was wealthy for his time. Jacob was wealthy. David – glory of all of his kingdom, included wealth. You know Solomon and my when the Queen of Sheba saw it, the first thing she said was “the half has never yet been told”. Well, why? Because those Jewish people were enjoying those earthly promises.

Now when we get over into the epistles of Paul and the out calling, as we mentioned in our last program, and God now calls out of the mainstream of humanity, the Body of Christ, the Church, a mixture of predominately Gentiles, but also Jews, now we have a group of people to whom all the promises are not earthly, but what? Heavenly!! Every thing that is promised to the Church is not earthly, it’s heavenly. And our future is going to be to rule in the heavenlies. Well, this is immediately what I want people to recognize that as you study your Bible, you have to separate these two entities in God’s dealing. When you separate completely the nation of Israel even in the New Testament from the Church, the Body of Christ then all the contradictions disappear. All of the major questions disappear. And every thing becomes so sensible.

I had a young man just the other day out in Indiana to come up and he said, “My wife’s been a Christian a long time. I’ve never interfered with that but I’ve never had any interest. I never went to Church with her, I never read the Bible. I had no interest. But I watched a few of your programs and you’re the first one that makes sense.” Well, I don’t take the credit for that. I believe that’s the work of the Holy Spirit. But the Bible is a sensible Book and it makes sense IF you simply keep these two areas (the nation of Israel and the Body of Christ, the Church) separated.

So in the beginning the Triune, the Almighty God, called out of nothing, everything. The heavens. The angelic hosts. The earth. Everything that’s in it all began with our Creator. Now let’s take a look at how the New Testament treats this very same event, as we have here in Genesis. I’d like to have you turn now with me to John’s Gospel, chapter 1. All these writers are inspired of the Holy Spirit. They are moved of God to write what they write. And so now naturally John, as he speaks of the beginning, is going to use the same language that Moses did. I feel Moses wrote the first five books. And so John’s Gospel, chapter 1 and verse 1 says “In the beginning…” He doesn’t say twenty million years ago. He doesn’t say ten thousand years ago. All John says is “in the beginning” just as Genesis says. But in the beginning, according to John was the Word. It is capitalized so it is a term of deity.

John 1:1

“In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.”

So in the beginning was the Word, a person of that Triune Godhead, and this person, the Word, was with God, that is from eternity past, whenever that was, and the Word was God. Now we know we have some cults that disagree with me and they try to tell me that Jesus was not God. Well that flies in the face of the Book. Jesus was just as much God as God the Father or God the Spirit. And we’re going to see why I say that in just a few moments.

John 1:1-2

“In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. 2. The same was in the beginning with God.”

In other words, the Triune Godhead was complete and they were in absolute consensus with what they were going to do. Now verse 3.

John 1:3

“All things were make by him;…” (by whom? The Word.)

Now you know I’m a stickler for grammar because after all the whole idea of language is to communicate. And that is what the word “Word” implies. There had to be a person of the Godhead who would communicate with whatever it was that they’re going to call creation out of. Now personally, I think it was God Himself. But now, that’s not unusual. God talks to Himself. Every once in awhile my little wife will be in the kitchen and I’ll hear her and I say, “Who are you talking to?” She’ll just say, “Forget it, I’m talking to myself.” Well, I imagine you all have the same experience from time to time and God does too.

I’ve mentioned the fact one time that Martin Luther just had a real hang up with Christ’s statements from the cross when He seemingly spoke to God. And Martin Luther came to the conclusion that it was God speaking to God. Absolutely it was. And so the Word was the communicator. He was the one who spoke the power of creation. When we get to Hebrews in a little bit I’m going to show you that it’s the Word, the Son of God, Christ, who has spoken in this Book. This is the Word of the very person of the Godhead who is the Communicator, which is God the Son.

Now if you doubt that this is speaking about God the Son come down to verse 14 and there is the clincher.

John 1:14

“And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (Now you know God the Father or God the Spirit never became flesh so who is it? Well it’s God the Son – it’s Christ!) (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth.”

Now let’s move on quickly to Colossians, which is well into Paul’s writings. Let’s go to chapter 1, and here we find a tremendous little portion of Scripture. Remember we’re fitting this all back with Genesis 1:1. Now let’s look what Paul says in Colossians chapter 1 and we almost have to come down to verse 12.

Colossians 1:12

“Giving thanks unto the Father, which hath made us meet to be partakers of the inheritance of the saints in light: 13. Who (speaking of the Father. Here’s where grammar comes in.Who is modifying the word Father.) hath delivered us from the power of darkness, and hath translated us into the kingdom of his dear Son.”

Now in verse 14 the modification is going to change.

Colossians 1:14-16

“In whom (the Son) we have redemption through his blood, even the forgiveness of sins: 15. Who (speaking of the Son) is the image (that which you can see and touch) of the(what?) invisible God,) (remember the Triune God is a Spirit, He’s invisible, and) the first born of every creature.: (and now look at verse 16, and tying it with Genesis 1:1) For by him(the Son) 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: (yes, Satan himself is a created being. He was created by God the Son. Not only did He create) all things (but they) were created by him, and for him:”

And then you come down into verse 17 and not only is He before all things, not only is He the Creator of all things, but:

Colossians 1:17b

“…by him all things consist.”

And what does that word mean? Held together. Why doesn’t the universe just explode in nuclear fission? Why don’t the planets act like an atom and split one another into tremendous energy and explosion? And I think someday they will according to Peter. Well why don’t they tonight? Because God the Son controls every particle of it with the power of His Word.

Now let’s come back with me to the Book of Ephesians chapter 3, and look what the apostle Paul said here. Let’s drop in at verse 9.

Ephesians 3:9

“And to make all men see what is the fellowship of the mystery, which from the beginning of the world hath been hid in God, (the same God of Genesis 1:1) who created all things by Jesus Christ:”

Now isn’t that something? I make a point of that for a reason. I remember when I was teaching a class up in Iowa years and years ago, and I made the point, have you ever stopped to realize that the people who nailed Christ to that cross, and set Him up as a public spectacle were the created being of the Creator that they were crucifying? That shook up that class, because they had never had that kind of concept of who Jesus really was. But it’s true! It was the created beings, crucifying their Creator! I hope you never lose sight of that fact. I know when I have to think of my own salvation, I just have to thank God, that here He is, the Sovereign totally God of the universe, and yet it’s the same God that died the death that I should have died. It’s the same God that rose from the dead, and extended eternal life to all that would believe, and you can’t separate that from Him. He is, and was the Creator!

Now let’s go to another over in the Book of Hebrews chapter 1. For sake of tying in what I said moment ago with regard to every word of this Book, how it came to us. Yes the Holy Spirit inspired it, but it’s the Word of God the Son. And the apostle Paul over and over says: “I hear Him speaking to me.” Who? Jesus! Now look what it says here in Hebrews 1:1

Hebrews 1:1-2a

“God, (the Triune God of Genesis 1:1. The Trinity, God the Father, God the Son, and God the Spirit) who at sundry times and in divers manners spake in time past unto the fathers(that is the forefathers of Israel in the Old Testament) by the prophets, (But don’t stop there, because this same God) Hath in these last days…”

What are the last days of Scripture? Everything from Christ’s advent on. A lot of people think that the last days are just like the Tribulation and the Second Coming. No that’s the latter days. The last days is that whole period of time from His first advent to the end of the Age of Grace. So in these last days, from the time of His first advent, this same God hath already:

Hebrews 1:2b

“… spoken unto us by his Son, whom he (God) hath appointed heir of all things, by whom also he made the worlds;”

Now isn’t that plain, and isn’t that beautiful? Let’s go back to the Book of Acts chapter 2 for a moment and look at a passage. I’ve been using this more and more in my teachings lately just for an example. It’s a perfect example of how everything as I said in the last program is under the Sovereignty of God, without seemingly taking away the free will of mankind and nations. Yet everything comes to pass as He originally foreordained it. Nothing ever takes God by surprise or is He ever a day late.

You know I told my classes here in Oklahoma so many times, that if there is a period of human history where that truth is so evident that God is Sovereign, and yet He’s let generals, and presidents, and dictators seemingly make decisions of their own free will, yet the Sovereign will of God shines through. There is no greater time where that is so evident than in World War II. All you have to do is go back and look at the history of World War II and how many times things just all of a sudden fell into place at just the right time, it’s absolutely amazing. Well here is where it all began in Acts chapter 2, verse 22 and 23. This is where Peter is addressing the nation of Israel with regard of them having crucified the Christ.

Acts 2:22-23a

“Ye men of Israel, hear these words, Jesus of Nazareth, a man approved of God among you by miracles, and wonders and signs, which God did by him (Jesus) in the midst of you, as ye yourselves also know: 23. Him, (Jesus of Nazareth) being delivered by the determinate counsel…”

I think in at least my own thinking, and I never want to do violence to the translation here, but I think in my own English I could use the word determining counsel. You all know what it is to counsel. It the meeting of minds. In other words when our president calls a cabinet meeting, what’s the purpose? For counsel. They’re not going to make a decision until there’s a meeting of the minds, at least we certainly hope that’s the way it works.

Now that’s exactly what the Triune God did someplace way back in eternity past. Now I don’t think they had to sit there all afternoon between the three of them, and batty this back and forth. No, no, but nevertheless the Triune God sometime in the past came together, before anything was ever created, and what did they do? They laid out this whole plan of the ages. And in that plan of the ages, was the coming of Jesus of Nazareth to the nation of Israel. In that plan of the ages, was the nations rejection of the their king, in that plan of the ages was the crucifixion, was the resurrection, was the ascension, and every little jot and title detail was all formulated back there in this pre-determining counsel, before anything ever began to happen.

Now in the moment or two we have left let’s go back to Genesis 1:1, and just look at it once again.

Genesis 1:1

“In the beginning (whenever that was) God (the Triune God in all of His power and Sovereignty delegated to the Son to call it all into being). created the heaven and the earth.”

So the Son spoke the Word, and the universes began to come together. He spoke the Word and the angelic hosts were created, and He spoke the Word to that dust, and Adam appeared. He put Adam to sleep, and He spoke the Word and who came on the scene? Eve. And so it is in all creative acts of God, it’s God the Son, yes the same One that hung there on that cross of Cavalry that spoke the Words of creation, and everything begin to happen.

Now for just a little review of what we have learned today. Everything in God’s dealing with the human race you have to separate between Him dealing with the nation of Israel, His earthly people, and the Church to which is His heavenly people.

And as you study your Bible remember that God primarily deals with Israel, the Jew from Abraham to the writings of Paul. But when you come into the letters of Paul, he speaks primarily to the non-Jew, or Gentiles, and he addresses us today in the Church Age. When you read Romans through Hebrews, you read that as if God has written it to you with your name and address on it. But when you read the Old Testament, don’t try to put that into your life today, because that was written to and given to the nation of Israel. We can use it for our learning, but not for our doctrine.

1 - Les Feldick Bible Study Lesson 1 - Part 1 - Book 1 - Attributes of God

1: Attributes of God: Genesis 1:1-5 – Lesson 1 Part 1 Book 1

Through the Bible with Les Feldick

LESSON 1 * PART I * BOOK 1

Attributes of God 

Genesis 1:1- 5

Now as we begin this first program we trust that as we open the Word that you will learn, and grow in the Grace and knowledge, which is why the Lord has left us here. Now let’s just get right into the meat of the Word of God, and since we’re going to be following a format of “Through the Bible” as our program title indicates, we’ll be starting in the Book of Genesis, but before we start looking at the Scriptures which we will probably do in our next program, for this lesson today I just want to give an overview of the plan of the ages that the Almighty Triune God precipitated sometime way back in eternity past. That’s when, according to Acts chapter 2, the Triune God met in counsel, and with the foreknowledge of God, set everything in motion.

Of course the beauty of Bible study is to see that God as Sovereign as He is, nevertheless let men and nations exercise their free will and yet here we are as close as we can tell nearly 6000 years from the creation of man’s beginning. Also everything since that time has fallen right in place according to God’s timetable. Now how He does that without making human beings simply robots is beyond our understanding, but it’s so factual, and we can see it. Everything that was prophesied concerning His first coming was all fulfilled to the last jot and tittle. Everything that has been more or less prophesied concerning the end time, we can now see that these prophecies are falling into place. And it’s all according to His timetable, and yet He has never made man or governments just robots.

So as we consider the subject matter in this half hour we want to look at the overall scheme of things as God laid it out from eternity past beginning with the creation of man. Now I don’t like to get involved with controversy to the origin of the universe. I always say, so what. What difference does it make, because the main thing we have to understand is at sometime in the past, “God created it out of nothing” and we’ll be covering that in the next lesson.

At this time I’m going to put a timeline on the chalkboard, and I’ve been doing this now for the 20 some years that I’ve been teaching. I also want to explain why I prefer a chalkboard, and why I put information on the timeline as we teach rather than using transparencies, overheads, and some of the other technologies. Way back in my college days, if I had a professor who would write the things he was teaching on the chalkboard as he taught, then I could identify with it, and could write it in my notes and could remember it. On the other hand I could look at something that was pre-prepared and laid out on a note page for me, and when test time came I didn’t know it. So I’m still using that same old format, that when I put it on the board, I want you to possibly put it on your own note page. I think I personally have lead more completely indifferent, and ungodly (no sign of God in their life) people from that kind of background to a knowledge of salvation using this timeline than any other one thing.

I remember years ago, a gentlemen came up to my ranch, and it was at the end of a long day of ranching. I got off my tractor and he was waiting for me. He had a lot of questions, so I took him into the house and set a cup of coffee in front of him, I ask him, “Well where are you coming from? What are you thinking?” And I’ll never forget the question he asked me, and I’ve said many, many times, that I wish more people would ask that same question, and it relates to the biggest problem in Christianity and the world today. His question was,“Who in the world is Jesus Christ?” You see, the world doesn’t really know who He is. In our study of the Corinthian letters show how He is above every name. He is above everything that has ever been named or created. And one day He’s going to defeat the final enemy of mankind, death itself. But it’s the same Jesus Christ that created the universe.

Ephesians 3:9

“And to make all men see what is the fellowship of the mystery, which from the beginning of the world hath been hid in God, who created all things by Jesus Christ.”

Remember as we lay out this timeline it brings the whole Bible into focus, so I would encourage you to learn to use this timeline. Many people have shared with me, “this timeline is what got them interested, this is what began to make sense out of what the Bible is saying.” So I’m going to go over to the very left hand end of the timeline and begin. And remember this timeline will show the unfolding of human history which is God’s term for His story.

We’ll start back here with the creation of Adam and Eve at approximately 4004 BC, and we’ll just keep moving on up through time. As you can see I already have the cross out here in about the middle of the timeline, so I always like to go to about the middle between Adam and the cross and put in the man Abraham, and that would be at 2000 BC. But before we move on toward the cross after Abraham, let’s back up about 400 years from Abraham to Noah’s flood, and that would make the flood at approximately 2400 BC. In other words, about 400 years before Abraham comes on the scene we have the flood of Noah.

So from Adam to the flood is a period of about 1600 years during which time the whole human race had opportunity to have a knowledge of God after the format that He gave to Cain and Abel, that if they would bring a blood sacrifice when they sinned, God would accept them on the basis of their faith, but for the most part the human race then was no different than it is now, and so they walked it all underfoot, until finally God had to destroy them.

Now coming back to our timeline, we have one other important event that took place between Noah’s flood and Abraham at approximately 2200 BC or 200 years before Abraham and that was the Tower of Babel. The one thing that I always like to emphasize when we teach the Tower of Babel is that every false religion, every pagan religion, every cult, every mythological, every idolatrous religion, has it’s roots at the Tower of Babel. Remember God had ordered mankind to scatter after the flood, and they would not. So that group of people was determined to find an alterative way to approach God, and that was the whole idea of the Tower of Babel. It was a place of false worship. So from the Tower of Babel for the next 200 years the human race just goes deeper and deeper in false religions so that by the time you get to the call of Abraham at 2000 BC, I maintain that there wasn’t a single believer in the true God left on earth. Once again the whole human race has succumbed to Satan’s counterfeit religions which had begun at Babel. In other words, they were all idolaters including Abraham himself.

Joshua 24:2

“And Joshua said unto all the people, Thus saith the LORD God of Israel, Your fathers dwelt on the other side of the flood in old time, even Terah, the father of Abraham, and the father of Nachor, and they served other gods.”

So after that debacle at the Tower of Babel, God does something totally different when He calls out Abraham. Remember from Adam to Abraham, approximately 2000 years mankind has had opportunity of experiencing a salvation as Adam, Abel, Noah and so forth, but for the most part mankind had rejected it. So God had seen in 2000 years of human history man would not succumb to His offer of simply being obedient and believing what He said, and so now He’s going to do something totally different, when He calls out this man Abram (Abraham). God is going to bring out of this river of humanity that’s headed for a lost eternity, this one man Abraham. He’s going to give him a covenant in Genesis chapter 12, and He’s going to tell this man, “that out of him will come a nation of people, the nation of Israel or as we better know them “the Jews.” So from Genesis chapter 12 all the way up into our New Testament, the Bible is dealing almost totally with the nation of Israel.

Genesis 12:1-3

“Now the LORD had said unto Abram, Get thee out of thy country, and from thy kindred, and from thy father’s house, unto a land that I will shew thee: 2. And I will make of thee a great nation, and I will bless thee, and make thy name great; and thou shalt be a blessing: 3. And I will bless them that bless thee, and curse him that curseth thee: and in thee, shall all families of the earth be blessed.”

God put that nation of people in one geographical area of land between the Mediterranean Sea and the Jordan River, which we call the Holy Land. The ancients even before Abraham, for one reason or another referred to that land as the Divine land, and they didn’t really know why. It was evident that God had his finger on that little piece of real estate. Well after Abraham had been promised a nation of people, in a geographical area of land, the third part of that covenant, as we always emphasize, was the coming of a government, in the person of a king. So here is the beginning, then, of God dealing with the nation of Israel, under covenant promises, and is setting the stage for the coming of their King who would be the government. You know common sense tells you that you can’t have a nation of people operating as a society if there is no kind of a government, because then all you have is anarchy. Of course that happened often in Israel’s history. The Book of Judges tells us so plainly as we see in the last verse of the Book.

Judges 21:25

“In those days there was no king in Israel: every man did that which was right in his own eyes.”

Well that’s anarchy, but they had that constant promise out there in front of them, that the time would come when God would provide their government in the person of the King, the Messiah, who would be the Son of God! So your whole Old Testament, whether it’s history, Psalms, or the Books of the prophets, is preparing the nation of Israel for the coming of their King, and their Messiah, and Redeemerbecause there had to be salvation before any of the rest of the promises could come to past. Now then as we come up through the Old Testament, and we reach the time of Christ and His three years of earthly ministry, this is going to be the whole vortex of His ministry. The reason for all His signs and miracles was to prove to this nation of Israel that He was the Messiah, and a lot of people miss this.

They think He performed His miracles only out of compassion, because He felt so sorry for the sick, blind and so forth. Now that was certainly true, but the main thrust of His signs, miracles and wonders was to prove to the nation of Israel who He was. We’ll emphasize that when we get to our study of the four gospels. For example in Matthew chapter 16 as they have nearly come to the end of that 3 years of earthly ministry, and Jesus and the twelve are up there in northern Israel, up at the head waters of the Jordan River, and Jesus asked them the question:

Matthew 16:13b-16

“Whom do men say that I the Son of man am? 14. And they said, Some say that thou art John the Baptist: some, Elisas; and others, Jeremias, or one of the prophets. 15. He saith unto them, But whom say ye that I am? 16. And Simon Peter answered and said, Thou art the Christ, the Son of the living God.”

When we read those portions, I always point out to people, Peter didn’t add anything about the cross to his profession of faith because he didn’t know about the cross. Peter doesn’t say a word about resurrection, because he doesn’t know about the resurrection, and yet Peter said everything that needed to be said, because Jesus never said a word against it, but rather He commended him by saying:

Matthew 16:17

“Blessed art thou; Simon Barjonia, for flesh and blood hath not revealed it unto thee, but my Father which is in heaven.”

So was Peter right? Absolutely he was right, and we see this throughout the four gospels account. Then there was Martha at the account of Lazarus’s death, and she was a little up tight you know that Jesus had been absent when He should have been there to heal him from his sick bed, but Jesus’ answer was what?

John 11:23-27

“Jesus saith unto her, Thy brother shall rise again. 24. Martha said unto him, I know that he shall rise again in the resurrection at the last day. (then Jesus gave that classic answer)25. Jesus said unto her, I am the resurrection, and the life: he that believeth in me, though he were dead, yet shall he live. 26. And whosoever liveth and believeth in me shall never die. Believest thou this? 27. She said unto him, Yea, Lord, I believe that thou art the Christ, the Son of God, which should come into the world.”

Then you can come all the way up to Saul’s conversion, before the Gospel of Grace had even been whispered, and Saul has that tremendous conversion experience on the road to Damascus. After he had his body replenished with food, and he’d gotten his sight back, he goes straight to the synagogue of the Jews, and what does he preach?

Acts 9:20

“And straightway he preached Christ in the synagogues, that he is the Son of God.”

So the whole thrust of the Old Testament promises is that their government, in the person of the King and Messiah and Redeemer, would one day come to the nation of Israel. Well we know now from history, as well as from the Book, that Israel didn’t believe who Jesus was, for the most part. Only a small percentage believed that He was the Promised One,and so the majority cried out for His death. And that is where we have another classic statement, which was word for word from the Old Testament Scriptures “We’ll not have this man to rule over us!”

And so Rome carried it out at Israel’s request and He was crucified. Alright then, that takes us into that area of the timeline beyond the cross when Israel now, because of their rejection, is funneled back into the mainstream of humanity which we call the dispersion. This is when they were sent into every nation under heaven. This is when the temple was destroyed, and the priesthood was destroyed, and when Israel almost loses her national identity, for sure, as they are dispersed into the main line of humanity. And it was all because they rejected their Messiah and their opportunity for their king.

But you see, even though Satan may have thought that he had won the victory here, he may have thought he was close to destroying everything that was prophesied through the nation of Israel. But Satan didn’t know that just shortly before 70 A.D. when the temple would be destroyed, that God raises up the other apostle, the Apostle Paul. It was through Paul’s preaching of the Gospel of the Grace of God, God pulls out a people for His name which the Bible calls the Body of Christ, which is the Church. It’s a whole new concept which was never known back here in the Old Testament or the four gospels or even in the early Book of Acts. They had no idea that God would, without Israel, pull off of the mainstream of Gentile humanity, as well as the Jew, and would put them into one Body, which we call the Church, and it’s all by Grace.

And so here on the timeline a few years after the cross I like to call this unknown period of time the Age of Grace, the calling out of a people by His name. This period has been going on now for 1900 + years. Now when the Church is complete and filled up then God has to take it out. So I am a strong proponent of the Rapture of the Church just shortly before the beginning of that final seven years. The Old Testament prophesied this final seven years of Tribulation, and always split it into, 3 ½ and 3 ½ . So as we come to the end of the Church Age and she is taken out of the way by what we call the Rapture, and God can then finish where He had left off with Israel back here where they crucified their king.

Again, we know that the Scripture is so meticulous all the way through prophecy. I guess I could take you back, at least mentally, to Daniel chapter 2. And you remember that great dream of Nebuchadnezzar, and how he lost his dream, and couldn’t remember it? But Daniel was brought out of his place and because of this interpretation he was elevated to the second man in the kingdom. But nevertheless, Daniel recovered the dream and interpreted it. And the dream, you remember was a great image of a human man. And his head was made of gold. The chest area was made of silver. The belly area of brass. The legs of iron. And then the ten toes were made of mixture of iron and clay.

Now you want to remember that as you come down the line of these metals we go from the most valuable, gold, all the way down to the least valuable, iron, and that which was isn’t even good for anything and that’s the iron and the clay. But the Scripture says that Babylon was that first empire. It was the greatest empire that the world, up to that time, had ever seen. But the amazing thing that it says is that an inferior empire would destroy it. I can remember about 25 or 30 years ago that’s the word that made me dig a little deeper. How could he call an empire that would defeat another empire “inferior”. Well, when you come down these metals, as I’ve already mentioned, you go from gold to silver to brass to iron, which are decreasing in value, but they are increasing in their hardness, or their ability to be used for manufacture.

In other words, I always give the example that you certainly wouldn’t make a plow with gold, even though it was as cheap as dirt because it has no strength. But iron, then, is the metal of choice. So what we have it a descending value which shows the descending ability of government to govern from an absolute dictator such as Nebuchadnezzar, down to the Medes and Persians who now had to have the consensus of two to the Greek Empire which was divided before 4 generals (you had to have a consensus of four) and then you come down to the Roman Empire, which was the first republic in human history. Yes, the Romans had a senate. If you remember correctly it was a senator who assassinated Julius Caesar. And then you come down to a weaker consortium of material and that’s the iron and clay, which we feel is the revived Roman Empire, which is coming upon western Europe even tonight.

Now then, what is the opposite? Well, as they ascended in military power, they descended in political power. That’s the quickest way I can explain it. And so everything through human history is an increase in military power of one kingdom over the next. But as the next empire came along and divided the authority, it weakened their political structure.

You know we love democracy, absolutely we do. But when it comes to getting things done, it’s the most inefficient government that man ever dreamed of. And yet, we can see that prophetically the world had to come to the place where we are tonight. And that is that every little nation from here to Timbuktu wants to have a democratic form of government. Who would have ever dreamed 50 years ago that the world in general would come under democratic forms of government? It’s prophetic! When you get down to the ten toes of Nebuchadnezzar’s vision, all of our democratic governments are as weak as cotton thread. And if you don’t believe that all you have to do is look what happened in Albania just a few months ago. Just over the fact of losing their investments, the little nation went into total anarchy. Well, that would have never happened under a strong armed dictator. But under a republic form of government, or a democratic form of government, the people can topple a government just by simply marching down the street. And this is what causes the instability.

So the Church’s is going to be Raptured out and the last 7 years of Tribulation comes to an end with the Second Coming of Christ as I’ve already shown here on the timeline. At that time Christ will return at His Second Coming and then He will be ready to set up the Kingdom that has been promised to Israel ever since Genesis chapter 12. And so there we have in this sort of an overall nutshell, the whole picture of human history from Adam to the cross, to the calling out of the Body of Christ, the Church, whereupon the Tribulation will come in under the rule of the anti-Christ, another world ruler. And then at the end of that Christ returns victoriously and the earth will revert back as it was in the Garden of Eden. And then we go into those final 1,000 years when He will rule and reign as King of Kings and Lord of Lords.