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How Do I Discuss the End Times Without the “Doom and Gloom”?

Core Christianity / Adriel Sanchez and Bill Maier
The Truth Network Radio
February 23, 2022 1:30 pm

How Do I Discuss the End Times Without the “Doom and Gloom”?

Core Christianity / Adriel Sanchez and Bill Maier

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February 23, 2022 1:30 pm

Episode 909 | Adriel Sanchez and Bill Maier answer caller questions.

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CoreChristianity.com

Questions in this Episode

1. In Mark 16:15-18, Jesus talks about the signs accompanying those who believe and mentions tongues and snake handling, it seems. This seems very odd and today's skeptic could point to this and say, “here, Christian, drink this poison and you should be fine, right?” What is the context and explanation I should be aware of here?

2. As a follower of Christ I run across many others who believe we are living in the last days. For some, this gives them hope and others it gives them a sense of "gloom and doom." How do you communicate this to non-believers without making it seem like its a message of “gloom and doom"?

3. If God cares about his creation, why does he allow humans to tortue and mistreat animals every day?

4. Are our good works proof of our faith and salvation?

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Core Question - What Are the Main Views of the End Times?

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Core Question - Why Do You Talk About the Difference Between Law and Gospel?

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I discussed the end times without the doom and gloom best is one of the questions will be answering on today's addition of core Christianity will hi this is Bill Meyer along with pastor Gabriel Sanchez and this is the radio program where we answer your questions about the Bible and the Christian life every day. Our phone lines are open right now you can call us with your question. For the next 25 minutes or so.

Here's our phone number it's 833-843-2673 you can spell it out. 833. The core 833 the core. You can also post your question on one of our social media sites course you can always email us your question at questions at core, Christianity.com. By the way gorillas live on YouTube right now if you check out our YouTube channel.

We can also send us a message. That way if you have questions, you can interact with him right there in the studio on YouTube. Let's go to a voicemail we received from one of our listeners. This is from Scott. My question is any to Mark chapter 16 verse 15 through 18. Just seems strange. The things that Jesus said to the disciples, besides that will accompany those who believe in my name they will drive out demons will speak in new tongues, they will pick up snakes with their hands when they drink deadly poison will not hurt them at all. They will place their hands on people and they will get well. This seems very odd and like a skeptic could point to this passage of Scripture and say here. Believer is always in a get bit by the snake you should be fine right I would like clarification on this passage and maybe the context in a better description. Thanks and God bless.

Scott, thank you for your question, yes somebody comes to you and hands you a viper and says you're Christian you know what unity I do not recommend trying to play with that thing so a couple of things at the right is a passage here in Mark chapter 16 the ending of Mark. This is actually controversial text for a couple reasons and the reasons that you mentioned but also because you some. Some scholars will point out in the earliest New Testament manuscripts.

We don't we don't have this longer ending of Mark. And so there's some debate among textual scholars about whether or not they should should actually be here that the good news is there's nothing here that contradicts the teaching that we see in Scripture that even with regard to what we see in verses 15 and in verse 16 as well, and he said to them, going all the world and proclaim the gospel to the whole creation. Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved, but whoever does not believe will be condemned than on verse 17 and these signs will accompany those who believe in my name they will cast out demons.

They will speak in new tongues, they will pick up serpents with their hands and if they drink any deadly poison. It will not hurt them. They will lay their hands on the sick, and they will recover. And so so the question is, you know how you responded the skeptic who says well you know how is this fulfilled today or in your life. Unity drink poison and be fine. What I would probably say Scott is actually all these things set you up really well for the book of acts which is which is coming after the Gospels describing the ministry of Christ through the Holy Spirit in the in the church there in the early church, you have the disciples of our Lord laying hands on the sick and healing them speaking with new tongues you think of the day of Pentecost, even an example of Paul being bit by a serpent and being fine.

Not not getting sick or dying. It was it was part of this this miracle that allowed them to preach the gospel to two people who didn't know the gospel.

He said that next chapter 28 verse three, so there there was no fulfillment to these things. I don't think that we should be presumptuous as believers today and say well based on that text. You know in in Mark 16. I should be able to drink poison and boy, why am I not able to heal my friend who's sick with cancer or something else like that know God ordinarily works through means he does sometimes work in extraordinary ways.

Miraculous ways even healing someone who sick but typically works through means through doctors medicine, you know surgery those those kinds of things. We give thanks to the Lord for those things as well and so there's no reason for you to be ashamed of this text of Scripture to feel like that you not. I swear this away with my Christian faith. As I said all of these things did actually happen, and in its recorded in the book of acts. So hey Scott, thanks for your question again and God bless.

This is core Christianity with pastor Gabriel Sanchez.

Our phone lines are open.

If you have a question about the Bible or the Christian life. Or maybe your skeptic. Maybe you have some doubts about Christianity, we are always open to getting calls from people who might consider themselves an atheist or agnostic and really has a challenging question for pastor Israel.

So jump on the phone right now will be a taking calls for the next 20 minutes or so, here's the number it's 833 the core that's 1-833-843-2673. By the way, we have a great Bible study available. We want to tell you about today. This is one that Pedro wrote himself on the book of Galatians. Yeah, I was able to put this together after having preached through the book of Galatians and it's a 10 week study on Paul's letter to the Galatians that really talks about that the distinction between the law on the gospel that talks about what what the gospel is a mean really, if you're familiar with the book of Galatians is one of Paul's letters in the New Testament and at the heart of that book was with theological controversy church. The church in Galatia was being led astray by agitators. Paul calls them false teachers who were compromising the gospel in the doctrine of justification by faith.

And so we get into that in in in this 10 week study.

Great for you as an individual. If you want to study through the book of Galatians or or for a group of people studying through the book of Galatians and get a hold of this resource for your gift of $20 or more over at core, Christianity.com and there's a drill said these are great for a group Bible studies.

Maybe if your small group for your Sunday school class is planning ahead for studies and could use this particular book. This would be a great one for you to dive into. You can learn more by going to core Christianity.com/studies again. Core, Christianity.com/studies and look for a rules Bible study on the book of Galatians. Let's get back to the phones. Here's voicemail we received from one of our callers named Jessica. However, I will lately a great help and advice. Grooming him as a believer and follower of Christ, how you handle that with nonbelief. Learning doom and gloom question.

I know that we are going to linking my question. I love this question Jessica because you're right that you know there's a lot of talk about living in the last days living in the end times and for some Christians you know you can just be the sort of dark cloud over everything like home and everything is going downhill.

The Lord is in a come back you know any moment now better sort of you know shut shut and locked the doors and hunker down and sort of isolate that kind of thing and I've I've seen this among some Christians, who you don't because they're concerned about things that are happening in society because it envisages the and I were living in in the last is asserted cut themselves off from the outside world and that it can be really not negative. Even this negative view of of outsiders of our neighbors.

That's why I love to go to Peter's exhortation in first Peter chapter 4 because he gives us very clearly.

Jessica, how it is that we should live as believers in light of the last days. If you will, in light of the that the situation that were presently in and have been in since the ascension of our Lord Jesus Christ, we could we could call the other days in the book of acts, the last days affect Peter does on the day of Pentecost when he quotes Joel's prophecy from Joel chapter 2, but listen to what Peter said in first Peter chapter 4 verse seven the end of all things is at hand.

Therefore be self-controlled and sober minded for the sake of your prayers.

Above all, keep loving one another earnestly, since love covers a multitude of sins. Show hospitality to one another without grumbling as each has received a gift use it to serve one another as good stewards of God's varied grace. Whoever speaks, as one who speaks the oracles of God.

Whoever serves as one who serves by the strength that God supplies in order that in everything God may be glorified through Jesus Christ.

To him be the glory and dominion forever.

Amen. You see, there you know Peter's words really words of comfort, words of guidance. He says the ends the end of all things is at hand were living in the last days, therefore here's what you should be committed to sober mindedness for the sake of your prayers so that you can have that communion with God. Love love for each other within the body of Christ love for those outside of the church.

Hospitality and the kind of hospitality that isn't stingy but hospitality without grumbling it. It's almost as if he sang it were living in the end times. You guys should really love each other at hand and a be hospitable to your neighbors, and open your hearts to those around you. Why so that they might know the glorious gospel of Jesus Christ. Note that he is advice here is not flea at you know right away and started Christian commune in and you know basically stockpile ammunition that kind of thing know he says continue to pray, continue to be steadfast in your faith and continue to love and show hospitality as II think when we think about the end times and the judgment that is coming.

It should give us a sense of urgency with regard to the advancement of the gospel sharing the gospel wanting others to know who Jesus is me. In second Peter when Peter talks about the coming of the Lord's is at the Lord is not slow, according to his promise. It's not that God is just taking his time with regard to coming back. It's that he's patient towards us, not willing that any should perish but that all should reach repentance. And so we should have this disheartened this this longing to see others come to know Christ. In light of the fact that that the Lord could could return that were living in the last days and so in our hearts. I think we should, by the grace of the Spirit have cultivated within us. This this desire to see others know and love Jesus and that should cause us to be hospitable people, and so I would say as opposed to being no anxious, nervous, afraid I'm suspicious of our neighbors, and you know cutting them out of our lives say we, I do not have time for you it should be just the opposite. We should be confident in the Lord and his grace in in the deliverance that he's going to bring at his coming and we should be eager to share the love of Christ in the hope of the gospel with the people around us. Thank you for your question. That is us some great advice. Rona reminds me of you know we look at the apostles during the during acts and what they experienced in and how bold they were in proclaiming the gospel and how passionate they were about to sharing Christ with others and that should be exactly our attitude so so thanks for that. That's right, this is core Christianity with pastor Adm. Sanchez. Our phone lines are open right now. If you have a question about the Bible or the Christian life also were open to questions about doctrine or theology or maybe how your Christian walk intersects with what's happening in our culture today. Some people find it really challenging to be a Christian on the job or in their school situation.

Would love to hear from you as well.

Here's the number it's 833 the core that's 1-833-843-2673 let's go to Carol in St. Louis, Missouri Carol, what's your question for pastor atrial hey Carol, I can hear you got another animal. Why are clearly unfortunately anyway. Are they outlined Marlin father Bell God created human gave them animal. I got me compassionate. The animal Kneeling number of any other letting me I think that would be greatly animal. Every day all of your forget there are whoever played their brain going and they don't get joy now live. If God created to gain any great players on the board and why would animal a constantly victim and at the mercy of many new human or going to be way hey Carol, thank you for that question. And I do believe in Christians do believe that God created the world and everything including the animals and you do have early on in Genesis this call for this charge given to Adam and Eve to exercise dominion over the earth, including the animals and I guess the question here is is is that dominion supposed to be cruel. Is that what God intended me we could we could even go a step further with your question, not just not just you know, cruelty to animals, but cruelty to one another as human beings as those created in the image of God, and I guess the first thing that I would say decedent were responsible agents as human beings as those whom God is created in before we do bad things were cruel to each other to one another to God's creation. God is not to blame for that. God is good and he created the world good and he calls us to be good to love his world and our neighbors in it, but often times we go against what God has called us to. That's what the Bible calls sin. Now there are a few passages of Scripture that talk about me thinking about this idea of dominion over the animals. It did talk about actually caring for the animals that your exercising dominion over it in in your in your life you think of what we read in Deuteronomy chapter 25 verse four. This is part of God's law that you shall not muzzle an ox when it is treading out the grain. That is to keep it from eating as it's doing it's it's work if you will resist call to to to not be cruel to your animal effect in the wisdom literature in the Proverbs in Proverbs chapter 12 verse 10 we read whoever is righteous as regard for the life of his beast or his animals, but the mercy of the wicked is cruel and so I think you're absolutely right that we think about from from a biblical worldview. We think about the creation God's world, that he made in making everything good that that the kind of dominion that mankind was supposed exercise was not a cruel dominion but but find in and good dominion out that there is. I'm sure a lot more wrapped up in your question, but I would just say we we wouldn't want to lay that cruelty I wouldn't lay that cruelty at God's feet, as it were, metaphorically speaking, it that that's our issue. That's our sin, you know that the cruelty that's in our own heart of the murder that's in our own heart that that's our problem. That's why we need God's forgiveness and the grace that he gives it so we should give thanks for the world that God made, we should give thanks for these gifts that God has given to us and we should honor the Lord with how we treat his creation, but especially with how we treat each other fellow image bearers of God and so Carol can really appreciate your question want to say thank you for it and thanks for listening core Christianity by the way of your regular listener to core Christianity you know that we have some great Bible studies available. One of those were making available today.

It's on the book of Galatians and it wrote this himself. It is really excellent for personal study or for your small group. Maybe your Sunday school class and we also can make those available to you in a group discount if you want to buy some for your small group or for your church. You can find out more by going to core Christianity.com/studies core Christianity.com/studies and look for the Bible study on the book of Galatians to Brian calling in from Columbia, Missouri Brian what your question for pastor atrial question like Michael, I just wanted to send you a note of appreciation I been listening often on and have heard your responses pastor centers out and say that right and and encourage because all my life as a believer. I've heard from pastors a you know if you have a dilemma or give a question. You know what is the Bible say about that and and and I think the you know as Christian goes as on-site, urgently people I think it's so important that that every time we come up with something that troubles us.

You know I think God wants us to look to his word for the answer and I think you do a great job of doing that.

I've I've multiple times. I have been on the intimacy going okay house you can answer this and I every time you answered it. I've been like man that is so good and everything from political viewpoints to the covert thing to the end times.

I just heard I'm just really encouraged because you know as believers as people or not pastors are not in the ministry as followers of of of the leadership within the group Christian community. We really know we can find the answer and and it can be tough at times but it is really encouraging to hear use reference Scripture and provide those answers to people who you know may not get it at times, but in our discouraged but the answer is always there, so I'm really I just want to send you note of appreciation because that's that's really what our lives are about as good a word, Brian.

Amen. Everything you said I just want to say thank you for your kind words and and you're right that is what it's all about. We want to go back to the word and encourage people with the gospel of Christ and and I ate your one of the things that you touched on is just how we often times in our walk with the Lord have questions. I know I certainly have throughout my life and it's so important for us to seek out the answers to those questions, not just to sit on those questions. Oftentimes that's that's how you know unbelief begins to fester in our own hearts is is we have be serious questions about God and the Bible. And instead of looking for an answer and and searching the Scriptures we just reset on them and and sometimes even assume that moment there is no answer. And certainly there are there are difficult questions out there but one of the things I so appreciate about God's word is how it speaks to so many of the questions that we have the needs that we have and so I pray that the Lord continues to bless you Brian and to be with you and and again thank you for your encouragement Brian.

I would love to send you the book core Christianity as well.

If you hang on the line for just a second. Give us your address. That's a wonderful book that will help you in your own spiritual growth. Let's go back to the phones. David is on the line from Kansas City, Missouri David, what's your question for atrial. My uncle abruptly ended, I apologize for that. I had a question regarding salvation so a lot of churches teach that grace alone or people will save a person, and I was wondering if that works Have to be like proof to show that someone has paid due to certain fact, it is likely Jesus withered up a big tree that had no roots, likely when I leave it change where they talk about faith without works is dead.

Yeah so what is the relationship.

It sounds like to faith and works, and certainly that the passage you bring up and in James is an important one for us to go to and it's one that oftentimes comes up in in this discussion it in there. In particular, James says in James chapter 2 verse 14. I think getting right at the heart of your question David, what good is it it, my brothers, if someone says he has faith but does not have works can that faith save him and I think I think of the way that James asked that question is really important. He's talking about a particular kind of faith that what we might call historical faith, meaning you know and individually so yeah I Bible, even Jesus. We've seen this week we've heard this, why believe in Jesus the same.

I believe that Nino Abraham Lincoln existed or George Washington existed, but it doesn't really affect the way that I live my life. Faith is not just sort of the knowledge of the existence of Jesus. It really is. Trust laying our our faith on Christ leaning on him, trusting in him for the forgiveness of our sins and and the fruit of this or that there is the work of the Holy Spirit in our lives. We know that Mina were justified by faith alone, faith alone, grabs a hold of Jesus. If you will, and were saved by that one of the wonderful things. This is God continues to work in the individual who is justified so that he might sanctify that person growing in grace, day by day in the Christian life and so I think one of the things that James is highlighting in his epistle is that that's gonna take place that's going to happen if you believe in Jesus.

Yeah, the spirit of God is at work sanctifying you, transforming you, making you more and more into the image of Christ. But we don't want to confuse justification and sanctification, and I think that's really important as well. Faith is the saving grace. It's laying a hold of Jesus as an empty hand that comes to God, grasping the righteous robes of Jesus Christ for our salvation. Thanks for listening to core Christianity request your copy of today's special offer. Visit us at core, Christianity.com and click on offers and the menu bar or call us at 1-833-843-2673. That's 833 when you contact us. Please let us know how you been encouraged by this program and be sure to join us next time. As we explore the truth of God's word together


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