163 - Les Feldick Bible Study Lesson 2 - Part 3 - Book 14 - Intro to Matthew

163: Intro to Matthew – Lesson 2 Part 3 Book 14

Through the Bible with Les Feldick

LESSON 2 * PART 3 * BOOK 14

INTRODUCTION TO MATTHEW

We trust you will get your Bible and follow the Scriptures with us, as we don’t like to impart anything as man’s idea, mine or anyone else’s. We hope we show everything from the Scripture. Most of these things are just as plain as they can be. There has been only one time in over twenty years of teaching that someone told me, “Well, that’s your interpretation.” But that dear brother after staying away from class for about three weeks, came back, and has been one of my best students. I still kid him about it. So I do very little interpreting. I just show you what the Scripture says. I don’t lift it out and say, “Well this doesn’t mean what it says, it means this and this.” Too many times, interpretation does that. Our problem is that most of us read these things and really don’t look at what it plainly says. Another point I like to make is this: It’s just as important to “realize what the Book does not say.” And that is just as important as seeing what it does say.

Now let’s finish the Book of Revelation. We’ve come to Chapter 22. This will wind up our study in Revelation. As we came through the Old Testament, we finished the Book of Daniel, and we were ready to move on into the New Testament in Matthew. But we had so many that wanted us to go ahead and study the end-times that we skipped Matthew and the Gospel, Acts, and Paul’s letters and went to Revelation. But after this lesson I hope we will be ready to begin in the Book of Matthew. So let’s finish Chapter 22.

Revelation 22:1,2

“AND he shewed me a pure river of water of life, clear as crystal, proceeding out of the throne of God and of the Lamb,” Evidently, there will be much the same geographical structure even on the new earth as we have on this one. In other words, I think Jerusalem will be the center of that new earth, and Jerusalem will be the abode of this tremendous new city. Out of this same area will come this river of water of life.

“In the midst of the street of it, and on either side of the river, was there the tree of life, which bare twelve manner of fruits, and yielded her fruit every month: and the leaves of the tree were for the healing of the nations.” Now let’s look at verse 2 more closely.

“In the midst of the street of it, and on either side of the river, was there the tree of life (the last time the tree of life was mentioned was back in Genesis. I told you then that the tree of life was going to pass off the scene because mankind can’t have access to it, lest he would live forever in the sinful state. But we would pick it up again in Revelation. Well, here it is in this glorious city. Not only do we have the river of water of life, but also the tree of life), which bare twelve manner of fruits (for eating. We will enjoy eating in our new body. Luke recorded that Christ ate fish and honeycomb in His new resurrected body, and Paul tells us that our new body will be like Christ’s resurrected body. And this fruit will enhance our eternalness), and yielded her fruit (what’s the next two words?) every month (that throws a curve at me, because the word `month’ indicates time. Maybe some great theologian has the answer to this. Anyway, here in eternity we have a time factor of a month. Whether it’s a thirty-day month I don’t know, but this tree of life is going to bring forth a different fruit every month): and the leaves of the tree were for the healing of the nations.” It’s unfortunate that the King James used the word `healing,’ because for healing one would need to be sick. And we know that there will be no sickness there. But the true meaning of the Greek work as I can gather is `therapeutic.’ In other words, “It’s like an apple a day that keeps the doctor away”

So eating the leaves will be a therapeutic thing for the citizens of this eternal home. Adam couldn’t eat of this tree or he would have lived forever. That is the whole concept of this tree of life, even here. Now we are going to eat of it because it will enhance our eternalness, which is what God wants, and what we would want. We also have the word `nations‘ at the end of that verse. I’ve always maintained that this Book is a nationalistic Book. We pride ourselves in America for being the melting pot of the nations. But that’s not what God intended. God intended the nations to be kept in their particular slots. And I think this is carried all the way through the Kingdom, as now we see nations as we come into eternity.

Go to II Samuel Chapter 7. Here we have the clearest indication of this Kingdom promised to the Nation of Israel. Since nations are listed in Revelation Chapter 22, it tells me the Nation of Israel will continue to enjoy her place of permanence, as she did during the millennium. In the millennium, or the thousand-year rule Israel will be the greatest nation, as in Deuteronomy Chapter 28. They will not be the tail, but the head. In II Samuel Chapter 7, Nathan speaks to David, but it’s the Lord speaking through the prophet!

II Samuel 7:12

“And when thy days be fulfilled, and thou shalt sleep with thy fathers (David would die), I will set up thy seed after thee, which shall proceed out of thy bowels (or innermost being), and I will establish his (Solomon’s) kingdom.” Who is going to establish it? God is!

II Samuel 7:13-16

“He (Solomon) shall build an house for my name (and you know he did), and I will stablish the throne of his kingdom (how long?) for ever.” Not for a thousand years, but for ever.

“I will be his father, and he shall be my son (that speaks not only of Solomon, but the nation as a whole). If he (or the nation) commit iniquity, I will chasten him with the rod of men, and with the stripes of the children of men.” And He has certainly done that. But in verse 15 we have the flip side.

“But my mercy shall not depart away from him, as I took it from Saul, whom I put away before thee. And thine house (the house of David. That royal family that would begin with David to the Messiah, the Christ Himself) and thy kingdom shall be established for ever before thee: thy throne shall be established for ever.”

That is why more and more I feel the whole millennium economy will go right on into the eternal state. Come back to Revelation Chapter 22. We’re going to have the nations as we saw in verse 2:

Revelation 22:3,4a

“And there shall be no more curse: but the throne of God and of the Lamb shall be in it (as we saw in the previous Chapter. God is going to be in the very center of this whole operation); and his servants (the believers from the ages) shall serve him:”

“And they shall see his face;…”

I know it’s hard for us to put a face on God, and I don’t think we should even try. God is eternal, He’s Spirit. Christ The God-Man is in Heaven at the Father’s right hand, but even so, I do not believe that we should try to picture Him in the flesh. God is so beyond anything that we can put together. But here when we finally get into His presence we will truly see Him face to face, and He will know us personally and we will have quality time with Him.

Revelation 22:5,6

“And there shall be no night there (evidently, we won’t need to sleep); and they need no candle, neither light of the sun; for the Lord God giveth them light: and they shall reign for ever and ever. And he said unto me, `These sayings are faithful and true: and the Lord God of the holy prophets sent his angel to shew unto his servants the things which must shortly be done.'”

Remember we are much closer to it now than John was about 1900 years ago. Now in verse 7, the Lord Jesus speaks to John and says:

Revelation 22:7

“Behold, I come quickly (I know the first human impression is “But it’s already been a long time.” But to God it’s only been a snap of the finger): blessed is he that keepeth the sayings of the prophecy of this book,” And to think that multitudes shun it!

I think it is so sad when people say, “Well, I never read the Book of Revelation.” I had a person tell me the other day that his pastor had said, “I wouldn’t touch that Book with a ten foot pole.” Well, why not? It is part and parcel of the Word of God. Granted it takes a lot of study, but it’s so thrilling that all of the prophetic things we can see are coming just as sure as day follows night.

Revelation 22:8-10

“And I John saw these things, and heard them. And when I had heard and seen, I fell down to worship before the feet of the angel which shewed me these things. Then saith he unto me, `See thou do it not: for I am thy fellowservant, and of thy brethren the prophets, and of them which keep the sayings of this book: worship God.’ And he saith unto me, `Seal not the sayings of the prophecy of this book (don’t shut it up): for the time is at hand.'”

Revelation 22:11-13

“He that is unjust, let him be unjust still: and he which is filthy, let him be filthy still (those who are doomed are not going to be changed): and he that is righteous, let him be righteous still: and he that is holy, let him be holy still. And, behold, I come quickly; and my reward is with me, to give every man according as his work shall be.” This reverts back to the earthly experience of every believer. Activities of our daily life as believers will go with us into the eternal state. God won’t forget. In verse 13, Jesus says:

“I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end, the first and the last.”

I know that for most of you here there is no problem with this. You know that Christ was in eternity past to eternity future. But many people don’t understand this. I’ve even had some in my class with the idea that Christ somehow came on the scene at Bethlehem. Nothing could be further from the truth. He is eternal! He never stopped being God! I’ve had questions like this; “How and when did Christ come on the scene?” He’s always been and will be forever. We see Him coming on the scene in Genesis Chapter 1 in creation. The New Testament makes it plain that the Son called everything into being. He is manifested all the way through the Old Testament. Then in the New Testament we have the invisible Person of the Godhead become flesh. He became visible. When did Christ show His Deity? When He was born? After He was 12 years old? After He was thirty? When? My own idea is that He never stopped being God. He was just as much God in the womb as He was all the way to His ascension. He never stopped being God. It was under control of course. I’m sure when the baby Jesus was playing with the kids on the block, He didn’t exert His Deity. He didn’t lord it over other kids. Even as a child he was still able to be completely in control of the whole situation. He acted like an ordinary child, except He did not sin, because He had no sin nature. Even in His earthly ministry that carried on. I’ve always emphasized He never let His Deity over-take His humanity under circumstances that would have benefited Him. He always kept them separate. When He was Deity, He was Deity. When He was man, He was man.

Revelation 22:14,15

“Blessed are they that do his commandments (this doesn’t necessarily mean the ten. Although they are valid as far as they go. Once we are out from under the Law and come under Grace, every instruction of God becomes a commandment. So, when the Apostle Paul writes, “Pray without ceasing. Resist the Devil and he will flee from you,” these things that God has put into words have become commandments), that they may have right to the tree of life, and may enter in through the gates into the city.” Those pearly gates. Verse 15 has thrown a curve at a lot of people. They say, “Why is this verse in here?”

“For without are dogs, and sorcerers, and whoremongers, and murderers, and idolaters, and whosoever loveth and maketh a lie.” This statement is in the previous Chapter. I think what is implied here is that none of these are going be in this eternal state.

Revelation 22:16

“I Jesus have sent mine angel to testify unto you these things in the churches (do you realize that word has been absent in Revelation since Chapter 3. Why? The Church hasn’t been around while the Tribulation was going on. The Church had no part in it. But here in eternity, the Church again becomes prominent, and is part of the overall eternal economy). I am the root and the offspring of David, and the bright and morning star.” There are seven distinct “I Am’s” in the Old Testament, with regard to God and the Nation of Israel.

When Abraham was about to offer Isaac on the altar, what was caught in the thicket? A ram. So Abraham took the ram and used it as the sacrifice and he named the place Jehovah-jireh, “The LORD will provide.” Another one is Jehovah-tsidkenu, “The LORD our Righteousness.” The very first verse of Psalms 23 is what? Jehovah-roi, “I Am your Shepherd.” Another one is Jehovah-shalom, “the LORD our Peace.” Then we have Jehovah-ropheka, “The LORD healeth.” Then we find, Jehovah-Nissi, “The LORD my Banner.” And the last one is Jehovah-shammah, “The LORD is present.”

In the Gospel of John, there are again seven I AM’s. “I AM the good shepherd…” “I AM the resurrection and the life…” “I Am the bread of life…” “I Am the light of this world…” I Am the true vine…” I Am the the way, the truth, and the life…” I Am the door of the sheep…”

Here in Revelation we come up with what I like to call the eighth “I AM.” You remember as we came up through Scripture that God’s number seven is that which completes. So number eight follows that which is completed. In other words, “New Beginning.” Now isn’t it interesting that this eighth “I AM” of the New Testament is, “I am the bright and morning star.”When do you see the morning star? Just at the end of darkness and the beginning of a new day. And that is exactly what you have here. At the close of human history, and at the beginning of the eternal day we have the “I Am” as the bright and morning Star. You see how everything fits so beautifully all through Scripture. Now verse 17 and following:

Revelation 22:17-21

“And the Spirit and the bride say, `Come, And let him that heareth say, Come. And let him that is athirst come. And whosoever will (salvation is not limited to a few), let him take the water of life freely. For I testify unto every man that heareth the words of the prophecy of this book, If any man shall add unto these things, God shall add unto him the plagues that are written in this book: And if any man shall take away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God shall take away his part out of the book of life, and out of the holy city, and from the things which are written in this book. He which testifieth these things saith, Surely I come quickly.’ Amen. Even so, come, Lord Jesus. The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you all. Amen.”

162 - Les Feldick bible Study Lesson 2 - Part 2 - Book 14 - Final 1007 Years

162: Final 1007 Years – Lesson 2 Part 2 Book 14

Through the Bible with Les Feldick

LESSON 2 * PART 2 * BOOK 14

FINAL 1007 YEARS

Turn to Revelation Chapter 21. I’m reminded of a gentleman who recently came into our class in McAlester, Oklahoma for the first time. He had been watching our program for quite a while. When he showed me his Bible, it thrilled my heart the way he had the margins filled up with notes and references from our teaching. This is the reason I teach, to get people into The Book to see what it really says. I do this as a layman. I’m a full-time rancher, punching cattle during the day and teaching at night. The Lord’s blessed us in this, so we’ll keep on as long as He gives us strength to do so.

After a review of our last program, we saw the end of the thousand years and the end of time as we know it. The eternal state is coming. Eternity, as the Old Testament states, will be a continuation of the Kingdom forever and ever. Eternity will not be on this Heaven and earth. This takes place after the thousand-year reign and the Great White Throne Judgment, and we are ready for eternity.

Revelation 21:1a

“AND I saw a new heaven and a new earth:…”

I try to get people to ask themselves questions as they study their Bibles. This verse should stir a question. What happened to the old ones? Scripture has the answer. Go to II Peter 3:10. I feel these verses in II Peter give us the reason for Revelation Chapter 21:

II Peter 3:10

“But the day of the Lord (remember this term, “…the day of the Lord” actually begins with the onset of the Tribulation and runs all the way through the thousand-year reign of Christ in the Kingdom) will come as a thief in the night (it will catch the world by surprise. Notice there is a semicolon at the end of night. Many times a punctuation mark in the Scripture will skip hundreds or thousands of years. That’s the case here); in the which the heavens shall pass away with a great noise, and the elements shall melt with fervent heat, the earth also and the works that are therein shall be burned up.”

I like Peter who, though an uneducated fisherman with no degree in science, uses the very terms that scientists use today. We speak of this earth made up of elements. The various elements and fervent heat in verse 10, spoken of in verse 11 as dissolving, is another science term. These are the exact words that Peter uses with regard to this planet, “the earth also and the works that are therein shall be burned up.” I see no room here for leaving even the core of the earth.

II Peter 3:11

“Seeing then that all these things (what things? Everything that makes up the planet. I don’t know if this will include the solar system or not. Our solar system is just a pin-point compared to all of outer space. My pastor made an analogy in a sermon which I liked. He said if man could launch a rocket, pointing it to outerspace, and even if he could get it going 186,000 miles per second (the speed of light), at any given point in time will it stick into the ceiling of outer space? I’d never thought of that. Naturally the answer is “no.” If it did, there would have to be something on the other side. This is completely beyond our imagination – the vastness of space; that something going at the speed of light can keep on going forever. But, as far as space goes, God is always beyond it. The infinity of God and space is mind boggling. But we know that “these things” applies to all that makes up our planet) shall be dissolved, what manner of persons ought ye to be in all holy conversation and godliness,”

Peter is saying, “Since you dealing with this kind of God, who is man to even attempt to reject Him.” But we also know that throughout human history the largest percentage of men have kept God out of their life. I try not to get on a stump and start preaching, but I get so alarmed that our younger generation seems to have no concept of God, of eternity, or things that are spiritual. They’re living for the here and now. They’re living for the gratification of the flesh, with no concept of the Scriptures. It just scares me. On the other hand we have to understand that all of this is getting ready for these end-time events, when the Anti-christ will appear. These kids in our so-called “Christian America” have no concept of what’s coming. Being ignorant of the Scripture, when they hear this charismatic individual promising peace and prosperity, they will fall for him hook, line, and sinker. Back to Revelation 21. As this planet has been plagued with the curse and sin for so long, we find that it is totally dissolved. Then the following:

Revelation 21:1

“AND I saw a new heaven and a new earth: for the first heaven and the first earth were passed away (gone!); and there was no more sea.”

Because the earth here has passed away, that’s the reason Hell has to be emptied out. Most people don’t think of these things. Hell as we know it is, at this moment, in the very center of this earth. But since this earth is going to blow up and be completely destroyed (as we saw in II Peter Chapter 3), even the inhabitants of Hell must be removed. In order for this to happen, Christ will resurrect the lost bodily out of Hell to stand before the Great White Throne. Then this old planet can be destroyed. Now for the exciting part:

Revelation 21:2

“And I John saw the holy city, new Jerusalem (the one for all eternity), coming down from God out of heaven, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband.” Remember in John Chapter 14?

John 14:2

In my Father’s house are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you.”

I don’t know if Jesus had the new Jerusalem in mind here, but we know that God has this glorious abode that we’ll enjoy for all eternity. He’ll still have a thousand years to work on it if He needs that much time. It will be beyond our comprehension. Now verse 3:

Revelation 21:3

“And I heard a great voice out of heaven saying, `Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men, and he will dwell with them, and they shall be his people, and God himself shall be with them, and be their God.'”

When this happens, God is going to be in the very present (not in a distant place where we have to take Him by faith). And eternity being what eternity is, it is in another dimension that you and I can’t comprehend. Even though there will be billions in eternity, each one of us will know God as personally as we do our own parent. That is one of the unique qualities of the eternal. Now verse 4:

Revelation 21:4-6

“And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes (this is what makes Heaven the Heaven as we think of it); and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away. I like to tie tears, death, sorrow, and pain to this earth. That is part of the curse and the earth today! And he that sat upon the throne said, `Behold, I make all things new.’ And he said unto me, `Write: for these words are true and faithful.’ And he said unto me, `It is done, I am the Alpha and Omega (only one Person in the Godhead says that. It’s Christ. So the Lord Jesus refers to Himself as), the beginning and the end. I will give unto him that is athirst of the fountain of the water of life freely.'” That’s the eternal part again.

Revelation 21:7,8

“He that overcometh shall inherit all things; and I will be his God, and he shall be my son.” In verse 8 we have a reminder from God of those who will not be in this eternal state with us.

“But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers, and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death.” The final separation from God.

Revelation 21:9-11

“And there came unto me one of the seven angels which had the seven vials full of the seven last plagues (of the Tribulation), and talked with me saying, Come hither, I will shew thee the bride, the Lamb’s wife.” These are terms of position, not communal living. This bride is the new Jerusalem descending out of Heaven.

“And he carried me away in the spirit to a great and high mountain, and shewed me that great city, the holy Jerusalem, descending out of heaven from God. Having the glory of God: and her light was like unto a stone most precious, even like a jasper stone, clear as crystal;”

I won’t read all the descriptions (which are completely beyond our comprehension). With the gem stones and jewels that will make up this city (it isn’t just going to be gold), it’s going to be everything that we think of as wealth and beauty.

Revelation 21:12-15

“And had a wall great and high, and had twelve gates, and at the gates twelve angels, and names written thereon, which are the names of the twelve tribes of the children of Israel: On the east three gates; on the north three gates; on the south three gates; and on the west three gates. And the wall of the city had twelve foundations, and in them the names of the twelve apostles (Peter and the eleven) of the Lamb. And he that talked with me had a golden reed to measure the city, and the gates thereof, and the wall thereof.” Now in verse 16, he brings it into language we kind of understand.

Revelation 21:16

“And the city lieth foursquare (it won’t be so many miles wide and long, as our cities are today, but rather long, wide, and high – actually a cube. Some feel it might be a pyramid, but I doubt that; I think it will be a cube), and the length is as large as the breadth: and he measured the city with the reed, twelve thousand furlongs. The length and the breadth and the height of it are equal.”

So we have a cube that is 1500 miles in each direction, plus 1500 miles high. That is from New York City to Denver to Mexico City. From Mexico City into the South Atlantic Ocean and back to New York City. That would be a 1500 mile square. And this city goes up 1500 miles. What’s another reason we’ll need a new earth? Well, that city could never rest on the earth we have now. The curvature of the earth would fall away from it, and most of the city would be setting out there like birds’ wings. I think this new earth will be so big, that even a city this size won’t go beyond the curvature. Get your calculators out and tell me how large this new earth will have to be for this city to sit on it. And there will be billions in glory. I think most Bible believers agree that infants and little children under the age of accountability are going to be in glory.

Looking back through human history, what percentage of infants got beyond infancy? Take the third world tonight and think of the millions of infants that die before they are even a year old. They will all be in glory as adults. That makes me think this new earth will be so huge and beautiful that no one is going to be crowded. Remember, this 1500-mile city is just our apartments so to speak. And as you come down through the text, we find there is going to be food production. I think there will be all the aspects of the thousand-year Kingdom reign. I feel there will be an animal Kingdom, and birds. There won’t be a sea, so there might not be fish. I think it will be an extension of the Kingdom economy, except on a greater and grander scale. God is preparing this that we might have pleasures evermore. Not pleasures as the world thinks of pleasure, but as God thinks of pleasure. I don’t know what that will be but I know one thing (knowing God as I do), He can’t make a mistake. It’s going to be glorious. To think that man will turn his back on all of this for seemingly 10 or 15 years of a so-called “good time.”

Put it this way. Show me a person who “lives in the fast lane” (we see this constantly with entertainers, etc.). How long can their body take it? Only a few years. They burn themselves out for just a few years of “pleasure.” And they have turned their back on an eternity of real pleasure! Isn’t it foolish? But mankind can’t get these concepts straight. They think in terms of living their own life and having a good time for three-score years and ten, not worrying about what comes after that. I look at it the other way around. I’m not that concerned about this three score and ten; I’m more concerned about the billions of years ahead of us. Now, let’s move on.

Revelation 21:19,20

“And the foundations of the wall of the city were garnished with all manner of precious stones. The first foundation was jasper; the second, sapphire; the third a chalcedony; the fourth, an emerald; The fifth, sardonyx; the sixth sardius; the seventh chrysolite; the eight, beryl; the ninth, a topaz; the tenth, a chrysoprasus; the eleventh, a jacinth; the twelfth, an amethyst.”Such beautiful gem stones! These foundations are going to be garnished with them. And then verse 21. This would make any bride’s mouth water.

Revelation 21:21

“And the twelve gates were twelve pearls, every several gate was of one pearl (the Bible says it. Women have gone to great lengths to possess the biggest pearl in the world, but here we will have gates made of a single pearl): and the street of the city was pure gold, as it were transparent glass.” This is where songwriters have picked up that we will tread the streets of gold. But this is our prospect. Since God is present with us there is not need for a place to worship.

Revelation 21:22,23

“And I saw no temple therein: for the Lord God Almighty and the Lamb are the temple of it. And the city had no need of the sun (that doesn’t mean there won’t be a sun. Because when you get into Chapter 22 the sun is mentioned again. But there won’t be a need for the sun), neither of the moon, to shine in it; for the glory of God did lighten it, and the Lamb is the light thereof.”

Revelation 21:24

“And the (what’s the next word? Please underline it) nations (Remember, the Kingdom economy will slip right into eternity, except on a new Heaven and earth. We have nations in the Kingdom and we’ll have nations in eternity. The Kingdom will be forever and ever) of them which are saved shall walk in the light of it: and the kings of the earth do bring their glory and honour into it.” It appears there will be nations with subgovernments under the headship of God (which comes back to the promise to you and I as believers). We will reign and rule with Him.

Revelation 21:25-27

“And the gates of it shall not be shut at all by day: for there shall be no night there. And they shall bring the glory and honour of the nations into it. And there shall in no wise enter into it any thing that defileth, neither whatsoever worketh abomination, or maketh a lie: but they which are written in the Lamb’s book of life.”

161 - Les Feldick Bible Study - Lesson 2 Part 1 Book 14 - REVELATION 21 & 22

161: Lesson 2 Part 1 Book 14 – Review – Revelation 21 & 22

Through the Bible with Les Feldick

LESSON 2 * PART 1 * BOOK 14

REVIEW – REVELATION 21 & 22

We will review more or less what we covered in the Book of Revelation up to these final two Chapters. I know reviewing is a way to help you grasp more readily the things you have learned. I would like to point out some of the aspects of these 1007 years. We have been coming out of the Church Age, and we know that the Church is the Body of Christ. That is the way the Apostle Paul usually refers to it. He says, “The Church which is His Body.” And that is what counts. It doesn’t matter whether we are a member of a particular denomination, bur rather what counts is, “Are we a member of the Body of Christ! Have we experienced His salvation!”

Remember that the Book of Daniel, Matthew Chapter 24, and the Book of Revelation have to do primarily with prophecy, and everything concerning prophecy is primarily connected to and directed to the Nation of Israel. There is nothing in prophecy concerning the Church. Consequently, the Church Age has been more or less a parenthetical period of time that was slipped in. It interrupted the 490 years that was prophesied by God on the Nation of Israel in Daniel 9:24. The Church Age is Gentile in nature, and most, if not all, of the basic Church Age doctrines come from the pen of the Apostle Paul. Since Grace and Law can’t mix, we know that the Body of Christ has to be removed before God picks up again with the prophetic program concerning Israel.

Many people write concerning the Rapture, and the first thing I know is that they have no comprehension of the fact that the Church is strictly a Pauline revelation from the risen Lord. In other words, you can find nothing concerning the Church in the Old Testament. You can find nothing concerning the Body of Christ in the four Gospels. And it isn’t until the Apostle Paul comes on the scene, and has this great revelation from the ascended and glorified Lord, that the Body of Christ has its beginning. Now since Israel has rejected and crucified her Messiah, and has rejected the King and the Kingdom, and the opportunity to evangelize the nations (there are many Scripture references for this in the Old Testament), which was theirs if they had not rejected their King and Kingdom, God then sets the Nation of Israel aside, and He puts her out in a dispersion that has lasted the past 1900 + years.

He then turned to the Gentiles completely without the Nation of Israel. That is a concept very few people seem to understand. That the Body of Christ is predominately Gentile in nature, and is not associated with prophecy, nor associated with the promises given to the Nation of Israel. But it is that unique outpouring of the Grace of God upon the Gentile masses, whereby they can experience salvation, and become a child of God by virtue of “Faith + Faith alone in the Gospel, as presented by the Apostle Paul in I Corinthians 15:1-4.”Whereby we become members then of the Body of Christ.

Israel, in the meantime, has now spent the last 1900 + years (according to the Old Testament, as well as according to Paul), in spiritual blindness. Which is still in effect even today. And even though they may seem religious in their practices of Old Testament Judaism, yet basically, they are blind to so much spiritual truth especially concerning their Messiah, the Christ. I know I have Jewish people watching and I say this very kindly with that in mind. They are blinded according to Romans 11:8 and they cannot see and comprehend these things, unless the Spirit opens their understanding. During this Church Age, the Body of Christ is strictly a Pauline revelation, and you won’t find it anywhere else except in the letters of Paul. So Paul talks about a mystery in I Corinthians 51. Now a mystery in Scripture is a secret. Which up until this time had been kept secret in the mind of God, and we will be looking at all of that in future programs. We can show it so clearly from Scripture, that these things were kept secret in the mind of God, until He saw fit to reveal it to Apostle Paul, the Apostle to the Gentile world.

I Corinthians 15:51

“Behold, I shew you a mystery; We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed.”

In other words, when the Body of Christ is finally finished and the last one has been brought in, there is going to be an outcalling of those who are alive and remain, by virtue of a change from this body to the new glorified body. All of those who have died in Christ during this Church Age will be resurrected with their new bodies. And we call that the Rapture of the Church.

After that happens, we find God picking up where He left off with the Nation of Israel. Remember, out of the 490 years that had been determined on the Nation of Israel, 483 of those years ended at the Crucifixion of Christ. Daniel 9:26. That left seven more years to make the prophecy complete. We call it the seven years of Tribulation. And that is what the whole Book of Revelation is all about. It is the unfolding of this final seven years of God dealing with the human race in general. But the Nation of Israel in particular. Then, as we found in the Book of Revelation, tying it all in with Daniel, we find that the very opening event of this final seven years, is the appearance of the Anti-christ. He will sign a seven-year peace treaty with the Nation of Israel. The treaties that have been signed by Israel with Palestine and Jordan, have caused a lot of confusion. Some people think that this is the peace treaty that Daniel speaks of in Daniel 9:27. But as far as I’m concerned, this treaty they have just signed is nothing but an agreement to agree or disagree. I don’t think it will hold much water for long. But we know the Anti-christ is going to come on the scene, and he will be born of woman, flesh and blood. He will be much like Judas and will be used of Satan to fulfill Satan’s aspirations. He will come on the scene as a tremendous political manipulator. He will be a charismatic type individual. He will be able to walk into any kind of summit meeting and command attention. They will listen to him, and, consequently, he will bring himself to a place of having the power of making that peace treaty with Israel as we referred to earlier.

The opening of the seven years will not only reveal the Anti-christ, but also his letting the Nation of Israel resume their Temple worship, with their animal sacrifices, and other Law-related rituals. We know that, even as we speak, the Nation of Israel has everything ready to resume Temple worship. However don’t have the place where the Temple must be built. But they will have when the right time comes. It may take an act of war or nature for the Mosque of Omar to be destroyed. But we do know that Israel will have Temple worship for the first 3 1/2 years, all with the approval of this man Anti-christ. So today, this is Israel’s anticipation, that they will have their Messiah and their Temple worship. But remember, Israel is looking for their Messiah to come the first time, because they don’t recognize that Jesus Christ was the Messiah.

At the opening of the Tribulation, there will be the two witnesses (Revelation Chapter 10). We studied how these two will be on the streets of Jerusalem. They will begin a witness of Jehovah God to Israel. Out of their preaching will come the sealing of the 144,000 young Jews who will come on the scene, but not to preach the Gospel of Grace, Faith in the Death, Burial, and Resurrection of Jesus Christ for salvation, we have had here in the Church Age. They will be preaching the Gospel of the Kingdom, that Jesus, John the Baptist, and the twelve preached that the King is Coming. Repent and be baptized. That certainly will be good news for that period of history. They will preach this message all over the world.

I think that shortly after the Tribulation begins, the Russian confederation will invade Israel. God will destroy them on the hills of Israel, so that will be a quick removal of those nations as enemies of Israel. And as we studied about the seals being removed, we found that one-fourth of the human race will be destroyed. By the time we come to the mid-point of the Tribulation, we find that the two witnesses will be killed and their bodies will lie on a street in Jerusalem for 3 days. Then they will be resurrected and the whole world will see them ascend back to Heaven.

Then at the mid-point of the Tribulation, the Anti-christ will come into the Temple in Jerusalem, and make war on the Jews. He will defile the Temple and set himself up as God, and force the Jew to worship him. Consequently, they will come under the horrible persecution of this man. Also at the mid-point, we find that Satan is cast down from Heaven for the final time. He knows his time is short (3 1/2 years) so now not only must the earth endure the wrath of Satan, but also in the Scriptures, this last 3 1/2 years is known as the Wrath of God. That is going to be a double-barreled unloading upon this planet. On one hand, from the Satanic forces, and on the other from a righteous God. You and I as human beings can’t comprehend what that last 3 1/2 years will be like. The scenes we see in Rwanda, and what we saw in the Holocaust, as awful as they were, will only be a drop in the bucket as compared to these final 3 1/2 years. Remember what Jesus said in Matthew 24.

Matthew 24:21

“For then shall be great tribulation, such as was not since the beginning of the world to this time, no, nor ever shall be.”

As those various judgments come to pass, don’t forget that the whole reason for all of this is to pay off the mortgage that Satan is holding on the earth. Remember, Satan picked up the mortgage on the earth when Adam lost it the moment he sinned. We saw in Revelation Chapter 5, a scroll that has the seven seals on it (the mortgage that Christ will pay off). Paying off the mortgage is really the whole scope of the Tribulation. As a result, the curse will be lifted from the whole planet. Having now consummated these seven years, Christ will return at His Second Coming, and destroy the remaining armies at Jerusalem in the battle of Armageddon. As a result of the curse being lifted, and the defeat of Satan, the earth will be made for a renovation project, which God will accomplish in short order, making it ready for the Kingdom.

Christ will then set up His Kingdom on earth and it will be glorious. The earth will be brought back like it was in the Garden of Eden. Now comes the thousand-year reign and rule with Him upon this earth. I remind my classes that the Kingdom has been spoken of and prophesied all the way through the Old Testament. The coming of the King and the Kingdom. But it isn’t until we get to Revelation that we have a time frame attached to it of a thousand years. The Old Testament speaks of it as being forever and eternal. Well, we have to reconcile some things then: why does Revelations speak of a thousand years? The reason the first part of it must be limited for a thousand years is this: as a result of the events of the Tribulation, most of the world’s population is going to lose their lives. Most of those who have become believers as a result of the preaching of the 144,000 will have been martyred, and they will be resurrected with the Old Testament saints at a later time.

By the time we come to the end of the seven years, Isaiah 24:6 says, “There will be few men left.” However, there will be survivors. Some of whom have heard the message and believed will be mostly Gentiles. They will become the seed stock for the Gentile nations to repopulate during this thousand-year rule. And the rest who survive will be lost. We then find these two groups standing before God as the Kingdom is set up in Matthew 25:32-46. They are noted as sheep and goats. One group, the sheep, will inherit the Kingdom. The other group, the goats, will go into everlasting punishment. We will also have another flesh and blood group that will go into the Kingdom, and that is the remnant of Israel. We saw that they went down into the mountains Southeast of Jerusalem at the mid-point of the Tribulation, and we found that in Matthew 24:16. God will feed, clothe, and protect them there for the final 3 1/2 years. They go out in unbelief, but will believe when they see Christ at His Second Coming. They will then be the seed stock to go into this Kingdom to repopulate it for the Nation of Israel.

Coming into the Kingdom with Christ ruling and reigning as King, we have the Gentile believers, and the believers from the remnant of Israel. These two flesh and blood groups will be responsible to repopulate the whole world. There will be a tremendous population explosion. The curse is lifted, there will be no pain in childbirth, and these children that are born will live the entire thousand years. There will be no sin, and Satan will have been locked up these 1000 years. It will be like the Garden of Eden, but on a world-wide basis. The children coming from these believers, though they are born with the old sin nature, do not have a tempter to exploit it, since Satan is locked up during that time. However, keep in mind that they have been living under the rule of the King, Who is benevolent. Also, these children have not had to make a choice for, or against God, as you and I and the rest of the believers had to make. So we find at the end of the thousand years that Satan must be released just for a little season. This will be a time of testing for the children. They will have to exercise their free will even as we did. And to give a choice, there has to be more than one option.

So Satan is brought back for the sole purpose of giving these new generations of children that choice to choose between Christ or Satan. Satan is given the opportunity to present his options to these children. And just like he did to Eve in the Garden of Eden, it will be that same type of temptation. Because the Kingdom has been so glorious, who could want anything different? Remember, Eve had it that good, but what was Satan’s ploy with Eve? “You can be like God.” And I think the same thing will happen here. I think he will say,“You’ve got it perfect, but you’re still not God. Wouldn’t you like to be like God?” And the vast majority will follow him hook, line, and sinker. After they have made their choice, and when they try to come against God, He will destroy them with fire. That then will be the end of time as we know it. After all that has happened, it’s time for the Great White Throne judgment, where all the lost will be resurrected out of hell to be judged by Christ, and then sent to their final doom in the lake of fire. Jesus tells us there will be degrees of punishment for those going into the lake of fire, depending on their works here on earth. Now in our next lesson we will be going into Revelation Chapter 21 and verse 1:

Revelation 21:1

“AND I saw a new heaven and a new earth: for the first heaven and the first earth were passed away; and there was no more sea.” That means the Kingdom will be lifted off the planet long enough for a whole new planet to come on the scene. I think I’ll have the reason for that in our next lesson.

160 - Les Feldick Bible Study Lesson 1 - Part 4 - Book 14 - Revelation 20

160: Lesson 1 Part 4 Book 14 – Revelation 20

Through the Bible with Les Feldick

LESSON 1 * PART 4 * BOOK 14

Revelation 20

Now let’s turn to Revelation Chapter 20, We know that we will come back with Christ at His Second Coming, when He will then set up His Kingdom. Then at the end of the thousand-year reign let’s see what happens. So now let’s look at verse 7. We have touched on this before, so this will be just a brief review.

Revelation 20:7

“And when the thousand years are expired (that thousand years of Christ’s Kingdom rule here on earth. There has been no sin and all has been glorious. But also remember it will be a time of testing, because of this new generation of children that have been born from the believers who were the survivors of the Tribulation (as we saw in Isaiah 24:1-6 where few men were left, and in Matthew 25:31-46 where Christ is separating these survivors at the beginning of this Kingdom rule). The children that are born during this thousand years of Kingdom rule still have the old Adamic nature, but have had no need to use it because Satan has been locked up, and they are under the rule of the King. But on the other hand, they have never had to make a choice. Everyone else, from Adam to the last saved soul, had to make as far as salvation is concerned. Eve, remember lived in a perfect environment and was tempted and so it will be for these children who have been born in this perfect environment), Satan shall be loosed out of his prison,”

Revelation 20:8,9

“And (Satan) shall out to deceive the nations (the nations have been repopulated) which are in the four quarters of the earth,… together to battle: the number of whom is as the sand of the sea. And they went up on the breadth of the earth, and compassed the camp of the saints about (Jerusalem) and the beloved city: and fire came down from God out of heaven and devoured them.” Christ destroys all of these rebels.

Revelation 20:10

“And the devil that deceived them (these children born in the Kingdom Age) was cast into the lake of fire and brimstone, where the beast and the false prophet (world religious leader)are (remember these two were cast into the lake of fire at the end of the Tribulation as we saw in Revelation 19:20), and shall be tormented day and night for ever and ever.” So the Anti-christ, the false prophet, and Satan are the first that will be cast into the lake of fire. But now at the Great White Throne judgment we see that the lost also go there.

The first Resurrection, although it comes in at least three different segments, is still called the first Resurrection and is only for believers. 1. We have Christ and the firstfruits. 2. The Body of Christ (that’s you and I as believers) which is by far the largest group, and then we have 3. The Old Testament and the Tribulation saints who were killed. So there you have all the believers of all the ages in what the Bible calls the first Resurrection.

Here in verse 11 we come to the second resurrection or the resurrection of the lost from Cain to these children that are deceived by the devil here in verse 10. Many people don’t understand that lost people are also going to be resurrected out of hell as we know it. We will look at that in just a moment. But now let’s look at verse 11, where we find the Great White Throne. It is only for the lost. You and I as believers will not come before the Great White Throne.

Revelation 20:11

“And I saw a great white throne, and him that sat on it, from whose face the earth and the heaven fled away; and there was found no place for them.” And as we saw earlier, I think that’s what Peter was talking about in II Peter:

II Peter 3:10,11a

“But the day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night; in the which the heavens shall pass away with a great noise, and the elements shall melt with fervent heat, the earth also and the works that are therein shall be burned up. Seeing then that all these things shall be dissolved,…”

And then we are going to see in Revelation 21:1 that this earth is going to disappear from view, because in that verse we see a new Heaven and a new earth coming on the scene. We will be talking more about that in the next lesson. But now coming back to the Great White Throne in Revelation 20:12

Revelation 20:12

“And I saw the dead (of all ages), small and great, stand before God (in their resurrected bodies);…”

Their bodies won’t be glorious like ours. But theirs will be fit for the lake of fire. Remember, their bodies will not be consumed or burned up, but their bodies will be tormented forever and ever. They will have all of their senses and feelings. As awful as it is, and it is awful, that’s why most people have quit talking about it. But that still doesn’t take it out of Scripture. Don’t forget, the finished work of the Cross has made it possible for every human being to escape this lake of fire judgment. They will realize when they stand before God they made their choice for this punishment. We look at certain aspects of human history, and say they never had a chance, they never heard. Well, they must have had some kind of chance; otherwise God would not tells us in the Book of Romans 1:18:20 “…so that they are without excuse.” And they are without excuse! I think that will be part of their torment of that final doom – that constant regret that they are there, and they didn’t have to be.

As I teach John’s Gospel, Chapter 10, about the Shepherd and the sheep fold, I always point out where the door is into the sheepfold. It’s not somewhere that is inaccessible, or unreachable, but right at ground level. Right smack in front of every human being as they sojourn through this life. And so God is absolutely just and fair, that when people have trampled under foot what He suffered and died for, then He doesn’t have to show mercy, and He won’t. This is going to be a place of judgment and it’s going to be awful. When people say that you and I as believers will sit and watch this Great White Throne judgment take place they don’t know what they are talking about. That would be horror of horrors. We wouldn’t want to see the lost stand there and hear their doom prescribed. And I’m glad we won’t. Now finishing verse 12:

Revelation 20:12b

“… and the books (plural) were opened, and another book (singular) was opened, which is the book of life: and the dead were judged out of those things which were written in the books, according to their works.”

Now the Book of Life is going to show them that their name is not there. There are two views on this. Some maintain that every person’s name is in the Book of Life, and if they die without salvation then their name is blotted out. The other view is that when people are saved and experience salvation, their name is placed in the Book of Life. And there are Scripture verses for both approaches. But regardless, at the Great White Throne they are going to see their name is not there. They will have no argument. God brings up their record. I know God has no problem keeping a record of every human being that ever walked the face of the earth. I know He will have the record, and it will be completely accurate.

Revelation 20:13

“And the sea gave up the dead which were in it; and death and hell delivered up the dead which were in them (now watch that language. Hell is going to give up those that are in it): and they were judged every man according to their works.” And then those who had been occupying hell…

Revelation 20:14

“And death and hell were cast into the lake of fire (do you see the difference between those two places? Death and hell is the place of the unbeliever who has died and is waiting for this Great White Throne judgment. He waiting for the resurrection out of hell, only to go to something far worse, which is of course the lake of fire. And the Bible calls this); This is the second death.” They died physically and now they die spiritually. The definition of death is: for the physical, it’s the separation of the spirit from the body. For the spirit realm, death is the separation from God. It’s an eternal separation. Now look at the difference between hell and the lake of fire.

First, we have to go back to some the scriptural descriptions of these things. Where is hell? And what is it comprised of? Let’s go back to Matthew Chapter 12. This is from the Lord’s own lips. The scribes and pharisees are dealing with Jesus, and Jesus says:

Matthew 12:39

“But he answered and said unto them, `An evil and adulterous generation seeketh after a sign; and there shall no sign be given to it, but the sign of the prophet Jonas:'”

There is a lot more in this verse than I have time to comment on. But I will say it refutes those who say that Jonah was an imagination, or a myth. Jesus gives perfect credit to him. Now verse 40:

Matthew 12:40

“For as Jonas was three days and three nights in the whale’s belly; so shall the Son of man be three days and three nights (where?) in the heart of the earth.”

We know that when the thief on the Cross turned to Jesus and said, “Remember me when thou comest into thy Kingdom.” Jesus’ answered, “Today shalt thou be with me in paradise.” But here Jesus says that in those three days and three nights, He’s going to be in the center of the earth.” He went down into what? The Apostle’s creed says that,“Jesus died, was buried and descended into hell.” I’ve had so many people say to me, “You mean Jesus actually went to hell?” Well, yes and no. And here’s the reason. We have three words in Scripture that all speak of the same place. Down in the `center of the earth’ is what Jesus’ own words were. And down there is what we call in Hebrew Sheol, In the Greek it’s called Hades. And in English it’s called hell. All three pertain to this center-most part of the earth. Go to Luke Chapter 16. The only way you can put these things together is to compare Scripture with Scripture. They are all in here, but you’ve got to look for it.

Now here in Luke 16, we have the account of the rich man and Lazarus. And we won’t take it verse by verse for sake of time. Most of you have heard sermons on this or at least you you can remember when you did. How that Abraham and Lazarus were there in Paradise, but the rich man was in torment. Let’s come down to verse 22 and 23:

Luke 16:22,23

“And it came to pass, that the beggar (Lazarus) died, and was carried by the angels into Abraham’s bosom: the rich man also died, and was buried; And in hell he lift up his eyes, being in torments, and seeth Abraham afar off, and Lazarus in his bosom.”

This is just one instance where this took place. It didn’t happen routinely, but the Lord presents this one instance for our benefit.

Luke 16:24

“And he (the rich man) cried and said, `Father Abraham, have mercy on me, and send Lazarus, that he may dip the tip of his finger in water, and cool my tongue; for I am tormented in this flame.'”

We know that he’s not there bodily, He will have that reserved body in the lake of fire, but here in hell he’s there only in the realm of the soul and spirit. But soul and spirit are so intrinsically involved with the body. And I always like to give this illustration: my wife is a nurse and she has told me (and I have read and you have heard) where an amputee comes into the hospital and experiences pain in the leg that is no longer there. They call it “phantom pain.” They have been so used to that leg, that even though it’s gone they still feel the pain that would be in it. And I bring that into this setting. The soul and spirit are so intertwined with the body of our make up, that even though the rich man’s body was in the grave upon the surface, yet the soul and spirit were suffering as if it were bodily suffering. So he was tormented and was in thirst. Abraham responds and says:

Luke 16:25

“But Abraham said, `Son, remember that thou in thy lifetime receivedst thy good things, and likewise Lazarus evil things: but now he is comforted, and thou art tormented.'”

Luke 16:26

“And beside all of this (even if I would want to come), between us and you there is a great gulf fixed: so that they which would pass from hence to you cannot; neither can they pass to us, that would come from thence.”

So what do we have? We’ve got hell, or hades, or however you want to define it, but Abraham defines it as a great gulf fixed. Now on one side was torment, no doubt about it. But on the other side was Paradise. We know that before the Cross, all the way from Adam, that men lived and died. Even the believers died with the two exceptions (and I’m always pointing out that God is God and He can make His exceptions). But there were only two that did not die and go down into Paradise, rather, they went up. They were Enoch and Elijah. Now those were God’s exceptions. Other than those two, the rest of the believers of the Old Testament could not go to Heaven. They had to go down to Paradise, because the atoning blood of Christ is the only thing that removes the stain of sin. Animals’ blood couldn’t. So these Old Testament believers were saved for eternity, but they were not ready for God’s presence, because their sins had not been atoned for by the blood of Christ. So they went down to Paradise.

On the other hand, the lost from Cain till even today are going down into hell as we understand it, but into the torment side. When the thief was told by Jesus, “Today shalt thou be with me in paradise,” Christ was speaking of what He said in Matthew about the center part of the earth. Remember Christ said that, I didn’t. That He would be three days and three nights in the center part of the earth. Now the Apostle Paul, the Apostle to the Gentiles, puts his stamp of approval on all of this in the Book of Ephesians, and that is why I find it so comfortable and easy to teach. And here it comes out in such plain language. This isn’t gobbledy-gook, or something that takes a theologian’s degree to understand. Just take it for what it says;

Ephesians 4:7

“But unto every one of us is given grace according to the measure of the gift of Christ.”

Ephesians 4:8

” Wherefore he saith, When he ascended up on high (as he did in John Chapter 20:17. That’s when I think Christ took all of these that were in Paradise with Him), he led captivity captive, and gave gifts unto men.” Watch the term `captivity and captive.’ Now verse 9:

Ephesians 4:9,10

“(Now that he ascended (in other words He went up), what is it but that he also (what?) descended first into (where?) the lower parts of the earth? He went down into the Paradise side of hell or Hades, where Abraham and the Old Testament saints were.

He that descended is the same also that ascended up far above all heavens, that he might fill all things.)”

Now putting it in just plain visual perspective, the following happens. From the Cross, He and the thief went down into the Paradise side of Sheol, Hades, or hell. But on the Resurrection morning, when He told Mary in John 20:17 “…Touch me not.; for I am not yet ascended to my Father:…” I think right here is where Christ emptied the Paradise side and took those Old Testament believers with Him. And where is Paradise today? It’s up in Heaven! Paul teaches in II Corinthians 5:8 “…rather to be absent from the body, and to be present with the Lord.” We don’t go down into the heart of the earth! We go immediately up into the presence of the Lord, because that is where Paradise is now located. The Old Testament tells us that hell, the place of torment, is enlarged. In other words, after Paradise was removed that whole area has now become then, totally the place of torment. So when an unbeliever dies today, that unbeliever still goes down to this place of torment.

Now here we are at the end of the thousand years reign and rule of Christ and we are at the Great White Throne. It’s up in space somewhere. It’s not on the earth, because the earth has fled away. So now in the resurrection of the unjust, they are brought back bodily because that’s what resurrection denotes. Now, back to Revelation 20. Here the lost stand before the Lord, Who in their case is the Judge, and not the Savior. As Judge, He shows them their record, and there will be degrees of punishment. Jesus made that so plain, when He said to the people of Capernaum in Matthew 11, the following:

Matthew 11:23,24

“And thou, Capernaum, which art exalted unto heaven, shalt be brought down to hell: for if the mighty works, which have been done in thee, had been done in Sodom, it would have remained until this day. But I say unto you, `That it shall be more tolerable for the land of Sodom in the day of judgment, than for thee.'” So He makes it very plain that the people of Capernaum would suffer more in their eternal doom, than the horrible people of Sodom.

In verse 14 of Revelation Chapter 20 we find:

Revelation 20:14,15

“And death and hell were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death. And whosoever was not found written in the book of life was cast into the lake of fire.”

I don’t care if people don’t like to preach this subject any more, the Book stills says it. And there are groups who try to make believe that a God of love couldn’t do this. But I’ve shown you that God’s love was so great at the Cross that there is no room for removing the eternal doom of the lost person. Now then the lake of fire, where is it? Well, who knows? We know it must be in space and not on the earth. And with the reading I do, it could even be a black hole in space, A black hole is a place where time is nothing. I also read at one time they thought that because of its tremendous specific gravity it is tremendously dense. And there is intense heat, even though it’s intense darkness, with a feeling of constantly falling. Anyway, that’s the thoughts of our people who study space. I’m just throwing that out as a possibility. I’m not saying it is, but we do know the lake of fire is eternal, without end and the lost will spend forever there. And the sad part is, they didn’t have to go there. That’s going to be awful. To think they missed glory because they didn’t believe the Gospel, as simple as it is. It’s sobering, as much as we would love to see the Lord come today, the only thing that tempers my enthusiasm is the fact that maybe today and tomorrow a few will still be saved and escape all of this. But it behooves us to be mindful that the eternal doom of the lost is something beyond our comprehension.

159 - Les Feldick Bible Study Lesson 1 - Part 3 - Book 14 - New Heaven and Earth

159: Lesson 1 Part 3 Book 14 – New Heaven and Earth

Through the Bible with Les Feldick

LESSON 1 * PART * BOOK 14

NEW HEAVEN AND EARTH

Revelation 20

We are going to come back to the activities in Heaven, as the Tribulation is raging here below. I think many times a lot of believers don’t have a good handle on what’s ahead of us (except going to Heaven). But the Bible tells us what we can look for. If it’s in here, then I think God wants us to know it. We will be looking at that aspect, beginning with Romans Chapter 7. We love to get letters from folk who tell us that they feel like they are a part of the class, and that’s the reason we conduct the class the way we do, in a very informal atmosphere. We love to teach The Book, and never want to be guilty of trying to twist arms. We just try to show you the Scriptures and tie them together where they dove-tail smoothly. We trust you will be blessed by our teaching. In the television studio here in Tulsa, a couple of months ago, we were ready to video one of the lessons, when someone said, “Les, do you get nervous when the cameras begin to roll?” I told him that I wasn’t in charge of the lesson. I totally rely upon the Holy Spirit. But, if I was in charge myself, then I would be nervous. And I do totally rely on the Holy Spirit for this teaching, as I do not have notes nor do I have my Bible marked. But it always thrills me to see people with their Bibles marked up. That tells me they are studying. So get your Bibles and let’s study together.

We realize that after we come through the Bema Seat in glory, the next aspect will be the wedding, which I feel will be in Heaven while the Tribulation is going on here on earth. The wedding will be between Christ the Lamb and the Body of Christ “the Church” Paul (especially since he writes concerning the Church), makes so much of Christ and His Body which is the Church. In Romans Chapter 7 we can only apply this to one verse and that is in verse 4:

Romans 7:4

“Wherefore, my brethren, ye also are become dead to the law (that is the Law of Moses. We are dead to that, it no longer has any power over us) by the body of Christ (we are not dead to be forgotten but);that ye should be married to another, even to him who is raised from the dead, that we should bring forth fruit unto God.”

Now, of course, that begins in this earthly sojourn. As soon as we become a child of God, and we become a member of the Body of Christ through faith in the Gospel, we are already connected to Christ. We have become joint heirs with Him, and He is the Head and we make up the members of the Body. We find more of this in the Book of Ephesians. Ephesians is where Paul gets into some of the deeper aspects of our position in Christ. The Book of Ephesians is not a simple Book. It’s very deep. But here in Chapter 5, Paul comes into the analogy of the husband and wife relationship here on earth, as being a correlation with Christ as the Head or Husband of the Body of Christ, that composite of Church Age Believers. Now I for one (I don’t expect everyone to agree with me on everything, and they don’t have to) don’t believe that the Old Testament Believers will be members of the Body. They were part and parcel of their relationship to their Jehovah God. The Body is unique to this Age of Grace. Those who have come by faith trusting in the finished work of the Cross, or the Gospel as we saw in our last lesson. And the Body will consist of mostly Gentile believers with some Jews but not many. Here in Ephesians, Paul is writing in regard to the human husband and wife.

Ephesians 5:21,22

“Submitting yourselves one to another in the fear (reverence) of God. Wives, submit yourselves unto your own husbands, as unto the Lord.”

I know there are some ladies out there raising their hackles at that statement, saying, “Now wait a minute, we believe in equality between the sexes.” That is all well and good. But God has still mandated this husband and wife relationship as is such, that the husband is the head of the wife. I’ve always told my classes over the years that does not mean that she can be his slave, or that he is someone who can lord it over her. The very next verse makes it so plain how this relationship is to be equated. And that is as the Lord is to the Church. That is how the husband is to be to the wife. And then the wife is to be to the husband as the Church is to Christ.

Ephesians 5:23a

“For the husband is the head of the wife, even as Christ is the head of the church:…”

Now there is that analogy. I have always asked my classes if there is anything uncomfortable or miserable about being in the Body of Christ with Christ as the Head? Of course not. He has nothing but the purest love for us. He has come that we might have life, and have it more abundantly. And that is exactly how the husband and wife’s relationship should be. The husband should live totally to the benefit of his wife. And she should not take advantage of that, but rather respond to it. When God created that first human couple; never throughout all of human history did God command the wife to love the husband. Not once. Not even here in the Book of Ephesians. But it’s the other way around:

Ephesians 5:25

“Husbands, love your wives (that’s a commandment. A lot of people think the only commandments are the Ten. But that’s not so. When the Bible stipulates something like this, it becomes a commandment), even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it;”

Any time you keep that analogy in view you can’t go wrong. Now backing up to Adam and Eve. If God mandated from creation that the husband was to love the wife, but doesn’t tell the wife to love the husband, what do we know He put into the woman? That responder. Do you see that? And that is exactly the way He has created us. That if the man will love the wife, God has put within the female of the species that ability to respond. And that’s what makes a marriage work. And this is constantly referred to as an analogy that as Christ is with the Church, so the husband is with the wife. Coming back to verse 23 and finishing it we find:

Ephesians 5:23b

“…even as Christ is the head of the church: and he is the saviour of the body.” That is the Body of Christ.

Let’s come back I Corinthians Chapter 12 for a moment. Here Paul makes such a beautiful description of this Body of Christ. And remember only Paul uses this term. Jesus never referred to a group of believers as His Body. Never! That is strictly a Pauline doctrine – that we are members of the Body of Christ.

I Corinthians 12:12,13

“For as the body (human body) is one, and hath many members, and all the members of that one body, being many, are one body: so also is Christ.”

“For by one Spirit (capitalized, so it’s the Holy Spirit) are we (not just the most spiritual, or the ones who are most holy, but) all (that includes every believer and they have been)baptized (by the Holy Spirit) into one body (the Body of Christ),…”

Can human hands touch that? No! This a baptism that no organization or denomination can adhere to. This is something that only the invisible, Almighty Spirit of God can do. And it happens the moment we believe the Gospel. That’s one of the results of our salvation. Immediately, the Holy Spirit places us into the Body of Christ. This whole wide congregation of genuinely born-again people, become part and parcel of this Body.

You can go into a strange community, and assemble with a group of genuine believers, and how long are you a stranger? Not over five minutes. I imagine you here in the class have already experienced that today. I know I have. I remember years ago I was invited to to go down into Central Iowa and teach a group of young people, and I didn’t know a single person. I was sort of filled with trepidation as I was driving, and I wondered what this was going to be like. But the minute I got into that living room full of kids, it was just like I had known them all my life. That’s the beauty of the Body of Christ, we are never strangers very long.

So as we are baptized into this Body by an invisible, unfeeling, act of God, it is something that we take by faith. Now continuing:

I Corinthians 12:13b,14-16

“… whether we be Jews or Gentiles (remember, they are the only two groups on earth), whether we be bond or free; and have been all made to drink into one Spirit.”

“For the body (the physical) is not one member but many.” And now he describes the members.

“If the foot shall say, `Because I am not the hand, I am not of the body;’ is it therefore not of the body?” Why of course not. They both are.

“And if the ear shall say, `Because I am not the eye, I am not of the body;’ is it therefore not of the body?”

Paul is making it very simple. No one in the Body of Christ can say, “I’m of no use.” And no one in the Body of Christ can say, “I’m at the top of the heap.” Regardless of our role, whether we are visible or just the little toe which most of the time is covered by the shoe, yet we are just as important in the sight of God, and in the Body of Christ as something out front and visible. And that is the point Paul is making here. That everyone of us are equally important in our role and function.

I Corinthians 12:18

“But now hath God set the members every one of them in the body, as it hath pleased him.”

In other words every believer is in a place that God puts them. And it’s up to us to simply say, “All right, Lord here I am, use me.” I’ve told people that you have to be careful when you say that, because you might be surprised how all of a sudden He will take hold, and start using you. So the Body is comprised of all the believers. And, since we are members of the Body and we have a common goal, it behooves us then to get out there and get busy and serve Him. Not only for the good of the Body, but also for the rewards we will received from our Lord. Now back to Ephesians Chapter 5, the whole function of the Body is to respond to the Head. Which is Christ! Use your own physical body as an example. If you stub your toe, where do you hurt? All over. And if you mash your finger with a hammer, the same thing. Why? Because all these nerves go up to the central nervous system that responds to every part of the body. It’s the same way with the Body of Christ. He is the Head, and if a believer over in China is hurting, every believer around the world should hurt with him. That’s just the way it is supposed to work.

Ephesians 5:25-27

“Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it;” Husbands should be willing to die for their wives. And that of course is the epitome of love isn’t it?

“That he might sanctify (set it apart) and cleanse it (the Body of Christ needs a constant cleansing just as sure as the physical body does. But instead of using water to cleanse, the spiritual Body is cleansed how?) with the washing of water by the word.” The Word of God! And that is why I love to get people into the Book so they can see these truths.

“That he might present it to himself a glorious church (or Body), not having spot, or wrinkle, or any such thing; but that it should be holy and without blemish.”

That’s the whole concept of walking the Christian life. We are not to be careless. We are not to take the attitude that I’m saved, so what. That should never be the believers’ attitude. Our attitude should be, I want to do all I can to bring glory to His name. And that brings about the old question about man, “What is the chief end of man?” To glorify God and enjoy Him forever. And that should be our constant desire to bring glory to Him. Now for a moment let’s go to the Book of Colossians in Chapter 1.

The Lord is filling up the Body of Christ, and we feel that it is getting awfully close to the midnight hour. When the last one will be brought into the Body, and then the Body will be complete. That is when we feel the Rapture will take place. Here in Colossians Chapter 1 are beautiful verses, but let’s jump in at verse 13:

Colossians 1:13,14

“Who (speaking of God the Father in verse 12) hath delivered us from the power of darkness, and hath translated us into the kingdom of his dear Son:” In whom (The Son) we have redemption through his blood, even the forgiveness of sins:”

Remember our last lesson on Salvation? The death of Christ made possible our whole plan of Salvation. Paul then say in verse 15.

Colossians 1:15

“Who (God the Son) is the image of the invisible God (now that would take another hour and a half to cover completely. God is what? Invisible. The Spirit God. The Triune God. The Godhead, as He refers to later in this Book, all are invisible. But at the appropriate time what happened? One member of the Godhead took on visibility), the firstborn of every creature:”

Colossians 1:16

“For by him (The Son) were all things created (remember in Genesis we found that God the Son did the creating. All three Persons of the Godhead were there, of course, but it was the Son Who was the Creator), that are in heaven, and that are in earth, visible and invisible, whether they be thrones, or dominions, or principalities, or powers: all things were created by him, (The Son) and for him:”

Colossians 1:17-19

“And he (The Son didn’t just come on the scene at Bethlehem, which a lot of people think. But rather, He has always been and) is before all things, and by him all things consist (He is holding all things together).”

“And he is the head of the body, the church (do you see that?): who is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead; that in all things he might have the preeminence. For it pleased the Father that in him (The Son) should all fullness dwell;” And that word `fullness’ is better translated `complement,’ it adds to or completes. What is the completion of the Son? It’s the Body of Christ. There is another verse along that same line in Ephesians Chapter 1:

Ephesians 1:22,23

“And hath put all things under his (The Son’s) feet, and gave him to be the head over all things to the church, Which is his body (the Church and His body are used in unison over and over), the fullness of him that filleth all in all (or the Church is the complement of the Son).

Remember you have that marriage relationship only as a positional thing, there is no reproduction in all of this so far as sexuality is concerned, this is all in the vein of position. But here, the Body of Christ, of which you and I are members, becomes the complement of Christ. Let’s go all the way back to Genesis Chapter 2. Here we have Adam, and up to this point in time Adam is still alone. We learned that Eve was within him. He named all the animals, and no doubt they came with their mate, and Adam must have been heartsick, because he didn’t have a mate. And so God says in verse 18:

Genesis 2:18

“And the LORD God said, `It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make him an help meet (a complement) for him.'” So as Eve was the complement that completed Adam in that relationship, so the Body of Christ is that complement for which Christ is still waiting and looking for. And when that Body is full, He will bring it unto Himself. Now back Revelation.

Revelation 19:7,8

“Let us be glad and rejoice, and give honour to him: for the marriage of the Lamb is come, and his wife hath made herself ready.” It is unfortunate they have used the word wife instead of bride, because in verse 8 we know it’s the bride.

“And to her (the bride) was granted that she should be arrayed in fine linen, clean and white: for the fine linen is the righteousness (or the positional aspect) of saints.”

Now several lessons ago, we looked at this Chapter in verses 11 through 16. We now have the Second Coming of Christ to the Mount of Olives as King of Kings and Lord of Lords. Verse 14.

Revelation 19:14

“And the armies which were in heaven followed him upon white horses, clothed in fine linen, white and clean.” Those are the saints! And as I’ve said so often, at the Rapture He comesfor the saints. At His Second Coming He comes with the saints. That separates these two events completely. Members of the Body, but also citizens of the Kingdom.