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Bible Questions and Answers, Part 22

Grace To You / John MacArthur
The Truth Network Radio
October 16, 2020 4:00 am

Bible Questions and Answers, Part 22

Grace To You / John MacArthur

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October 16, 2020 4:00 am

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The word of God is the source of all spiritual truth. Everything we need to know for salvation sanctification in the hope of glory is given us in the Scripture answer questions from his congregation at Grace Community Church well today you get to listen in on one of those Q&A sessions so stay here as John answers questions that more than likely you have had as you study God's word. The first question comes from a man in John's congregation, and then you'll hear John's answer. The Scripture I like to have explained its first Peter 321 the part where it says in courting and corresponding to that, baptism now saves you, not the removal of dirt from flesh, but to appeal to God for a good conscience versus saying is that Peter just talked about first time. At first Peter 318 Christ is once suffered for sins that just for the unjust, they might bring us to God and so forth, and it talks about their Christ's provision of salvation. And then it says that when his body was on the cross that his spirit was alive, not the Holy Spirit there in verse 18, but his spirit and he went in preach to the spirits in prison and I believe these were demon beings and the word preach is not to preach the gospel you on the lid so but Kate Russo to proclaim a triumph. I believe that when when he was dying on the cross is a marvelous truth when he was dying on the cross and the demons like perhaps they won the victory and so at the very moment when his body was dead. During that period of time. The spirit was alive.

It says in verse 18 and he went right down into the prison where the spirits are And you want to know what spirits they were verse 20 says they were the ones disobedient. During the time of no and you remember in those days the time of Noah, God sent the flood because the sons of God, mingled with the daughters of men, so they were spirit beings are cohabitated with women creating a sort of a rosemary baby race of people, and God destroyed them all. The flats of these are demon spirits. That's all you really need to know he can. He went into the place. Proclaim the triumph over the demon spirits even in the midst of his death and talks about the are in which people were saved by water. The art then becomes a symbol and in verse 21 the like figure under which even baptism doth also now save us, but it is not the putting away of the filth of the flash.

In other words, he is saying that as that are was saved in water so are we saved in water but it is not external water student is not the water that washes the flash the physical body. Not that at all. But is that it is purification of the conscience is the purification of the conscience that he's really referring to in other words, it's symbolic as the ship was saved by the water floating on the water. The water was it salvation, so we are saved by a certain kind of being in water but it is not the water of the physical baptism.

Water is Titus 35 tells us, not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy he saved us, here comes by the washing of regeneration. Okay, it's that washing of the heart go back with Peter and you go back with call to a Jewish concept that's really starts in the New Testament would Nicodemus doesn't Jesus says you must be born of what water John three spirit now what water was that while little anemic. Nicodemus understand Nicodemus was a Jew. He was the teacher and is really was an erudite scholar. The Old Testament and he would know that back in Ezekiel's prophecy in chapter 36 Ezekiel said Sunday God is going to come in a unique way and he is going to wash you with clean water. Take out the stony heart of flesh and give you a heart of flesh and put his spirit within you.

So Nicodemus knew that someday the Messiah would come and he would do a washing work in the heart and plant the spirit that's the water and the spirit of John three, and so water which always in the Old Testament outward cleansing symbolized inward cleansing always does the same in the nude so that the art then becomes a figure of being saved through a water and that water is not an external baptism this verse and Peter argues against baptismal regeneration, but rather a washing of the heart through the working of God and forgiveness through Christ.

Okay thank goodness yes my question is, did God establish salvation on the basis of faith because of Adam and Eve's lack of faith that God establish salvation on the basis of faith because of Adam and Eve's lack of faith, no, I don't think so now you're into a very difficult area of theology, which is known as lapse Arianism right sub lapse Arianism supra lapse Arianism more infra-lapse Arianism that was your heart and what it basically means is you really asking the question, did God establish salvation because of what Adam and Eve did or did God establish salvation before Adam and Eve did anything and what did God establish first and what is the sequence and what is the order and the answer to all of that is I don't know but some people are sub lapse area and some people are infra-lapse or in some people are supra lapse or and and and or a Labrador retriever's and I really don't. I'm really not. Did first so I tend to say that God didn't do anything as a reaction to what Mindy I believe that the reason God has given us salvation by faith just simply is because it most exalts him because it eliminates anything that we might do right. Okay hi my name is Alan Gordon and I just moved here from Florida before he moved a lot of people said that if I came to this church that we believe in election and I don't understand it completely, and I'd like to get it cleared up because so far of what I do understand. It seems right.


Well, glad to have it from Florida. God bless thanks for coming election. Well, this is easy. Let's other words, people always ask offering the question for you. Are we chosen to be saved or do we choose ourselves to be set right right do. Did I come to Jesus Christ because I was irresistibly drawn by Gartner nothing to do with or did I come to Christ because my heart that I want them to in the answer is yes and that symbol only see if I can explain it to you simply okay. The Bible teaches election and uses that word many times it says we are left according to the foreknowledge of God. It says we were chosen in him before the foundation of the world as our names written in the Lamb's book of life before the foundation of the world it says you have not chosen me, but I've chosen you and ordained you, the book of acts it says that God said, I have much people in that city. People were even saved yet, but he had his name on them to be safe, you cannot deny election Ephesians 1 chosen him before the foundation of the world. We know we are Alexa, when you come to a passage on election you preach with all your heart, you just preach it, it's there. You can't argue with where lack chosen by God. Nobody ever came to Jesus Christ except the father did what drawing so we are saved because of God's predetermined love and that we are elect of God, and what a marvelous thing it is, and that's when the document security because of the elect says he's going to hold us right right so we teach and we preach it and when you come across a passage on election you just preach it fully and completely because that's what the Bible teaches. But the Bible also teaches human volition.

Jesus said, you will not come to me that you might have life.

Jesus tell Jerusalem Jerusalem half that were gathered. He is a hen gathers her brood and you would not, in other words, Jesus, on the one hand said you can't come to me unless the father draws you in on the other hand, if you don't come here to be blamed.

Nine our minds does seem like opposite South paradox is unresolvable and they really are over here who are saved by God's election over here. If you're damned it's your own choice and let me tell you something that shouldn't be a problem for you.

Because of this, God's mind is greater than our mind right if I can understand everything I begot if I was God, the world would really be in bad shape but man loves to think he's God. He wants everything if it was mine. So what he does is take those kinds of things and try to find the truth in the middle that accommodates both in the end he destroys both and so you come up with this thing where will you see God looked at her own nieces I see where they're going I know what's going to happen whether going over there so I just more like them because I can see that and so God becomes the victim of the things that men do that is what the Bible teaches. If you deny election, you denied something in the Bible. If you deny the choice of man where it says and whosoever will let them come take the water of life freely. Revelation 22. You can't deny either one you leave them there and if you try to harmonize them in the middle, you destroyed multiple just leave them there. She said I don't understand that's not that proves you're not God and that makes us all very comfortable say another thing it's there is John Murray the theologian and Westminster seminary says there is an apparent paradox in every local doctor in every major biblical example asking simple questions. Who wrote Romans Paul God Holy Spirit who did Paul write a verse then got write a verse and fall right versus God you say was all the Holy Spirit is every word in Romans from the mind of the Holy Spirit yes is every word in Romans from the mind of the apostle Paul in his heart and his vocabulary yes who wrote it was all God. It's all it's all Paul will help you to be all God know what can't be in our human thinking that's paradoxical but is master. This was Jesus.

God or man. Yes, that God hath man what A man what's happened God nothing. He was 1% God 1% made candy that's right it's paradoxical, but if you try to make it in the middle and mix it in and take away a little of his deity, and a little of his humanity to come up with a hybrid would be just done, you destroyed the person of Jesus Christ. So you leave that alone and you say to yourself I can't know that secret things belong to the Lord. Deuteronomy 2929 I will not play God and assume that everything has to fit into my computer to be true unless you know the question who lives your Christian life Buddha do you are you other thing I'm going to live my Christian life for the children you say no it's Christ in me. I don't do anything. I just when he does it all. No known I am crucified with Christ. Nevertheless I live yet not I but Christ lives in the same paragraph she whatever you try to reduce the truth of God down to the human brain are going to have some stuff left over to stand and consequently you got to be able to allow for what we call divine tension. Just leave it Bible teaches election Bible teaches human choice but a teachable God understands how it all goes together. We know it's a matter of faith is some ability to destroy both so people want to sale. We can't believe in election because it messes up on this and are really doing what they have no right to do their say we got to reduce God to our own thinking processes and assume is going to do only the things that we can fully understand that's not so okay John concerning last week's teaching on the illumination of the spirit of the Scriptures.

How is it that we understand that so many spirit filled and studious men come up with so many different doctrines about yeah that's a good question. Why is it that good men disagree right if it's the spirit of God is our teacher.

Okay, let me tell you, and this is hard to know to clarify and simple way but look at this were alternately wrong somewhere because we lack perfection through. I know I have errors in my theology.

I just don't know where they are far newer.

They were changing. I'm working real hard and I but I believe everything I say I really do and I got preach that we don't you get the idea that I really believe what I say.

I know that I'm imperfect and so I start with no no one person is the repository of all divine truth and I say that to say this, that all of us are made to some extent incapacitated because of our humanness and so there will be times. For example, when were working on a passage when were interpreting a passage that it will go into our permanent file and we done less than adequate scholarship on that passage so that part of what we done may not be's truly representative of what that text teaches so you're dealing one with the human element. Secondly, the reason their disagreement is because of the background and presuppositions.

In other words, that men are raised in a certain environment with certain definitions and parameters in life and certain presuppositions. The hardest thing in Bible study is to divorce yourself from all your presuppositions and take every text purely on its own merit. We tend to go into the text with all of our preconceived ideas and then fit this thing into the system that's already been developed, rather than to keep the system open enough to take what that thing said thirdly I think there's a very important reason why good men don't agree.

And that's because many good men don't really dig deep enough, and their two superficial and if they really were faithful to dig with great diligence, they find themselves coming together much more than they do not support the fourth reason that good men don't agree, is because some texts are obscure and difficult to interpret. And since you can't really be utterly absolutely dogmatic about them.

There is room for latitude at that point. But the thing that is so wonderful in all of this is that those who are those who represent the word of God and believe the word of God and you teach the word of God as the word of God and love the Lord Jesus Christ will have differences, but they will inevitably be peripheral differences that corner of the main line of God's revealed truth will be there. See, and the differences will come through their background through their scholarship adequate or inadequate through their presuppositions through their diligence, or lack of it through the fact that this text doesn't have enough information for us to really know but I think the good men basically agree right down the line. I stand and historic content. I'm basically teaching you what is been the mainline doctrine of the church since Jesus Christ and I haven't deviated from that while there may be some passages where I go off little bit here and there from somebody else's teaching, but the heart and soul of the message of the word of God is intact and the other reasons that I give you will explain why those variations appear really what we need to do is work harder and get rid of our preset presuppositions. That really helps. Yes, I'm never really understood the passage in Luke 536 to 39 that the new wine and the old bottles so I asked him! Okay, Luke 536. He spoke also a parable of them.

No man puts a piece of new garment on an old if so, then both the new makes a tear and the piece that was torn out of the new agree is not with the old no man puts new wine into old wineskins.

Else the new wine will burst the wineskins be spilled, the wineskins parish wine was to put a new wineskins, and both are preserved. So for okay what saying is you ladies know about that you get an old piece of garment to put a new patch in it and it'll rip the old to put a new patch in an old garment you put tell you get an old wineskins had wine in it for a long time in those days in that culture. We don't do things like that anymore. But what would happen as once it was emptied it would sit in it would dry and cracked. If you then pour liquid into it. What would happen but would leak yet have a new supple soft wineskin to handle it and I think this is so important because now I also did a tape on that Tom, in Matthew nine. By the way, because as parallel as there but what Jesus is saying is so vital. He says when he came into the world. He is saying look I am not here as an addendum to Judaism. I am not here to put some new wine in old wineskins.

I am here with the new covenant.

I think he's he's representing his ministry, not as something that in any way on the in the earth can fit into pharisaic Judaism as it existed in the land of Israel.

That's really what he saying there's no way that that I can accommodate the system that is and he was really calling men to come out totally from that self-righteous legalistic works centered system that was Judaism. He wasn't accommodating himself to that in any way shape or form what he brought was something new, and it had to come in a new package didn't it couldn't be contained by that old self-righteous works system.

That's the essence of what he saying I think in a parable. Yes, I'm a question that's been racking my mind for a while and then, as did the prayer of Moses on behalf of the people. In Exodus 32 change the mind of an omniscient sovereign, immutable God know Noah didn't change his mind what you have to understand the Scripture is that God relates to us in human terms. Okay. In other words what it says it repented God that he made man to God really repent. No, but we understand that but that means that on the surface it appears as though God was sorry about something that he had done. He felt sorry that even made man. What that means is that God is not ipso facto saying I am sorry I made man like you did something wrong but is relating to us in a human emotion that helps us identify with what God was feeling when he saw people turning their back on okay now when Moses prays to God on Israel's behalf or to spare the people you know if there's just a few righteous Abraham did the same thing you remember in Solomon tomorrow.

The same kind of thing. If you can just find a few wood experiments over the Solon God is not changing his mind. God is not altering his behavior. God is not changing the plan, but from the human viewpoint prayer appears to have that effect on God and so God talks to us in those human terms so that we can perceive that that that that can be understood that way. For example, the Bible says the eyes of the Lord run to and fro throughout the earth's got advice, but if it said. God uses his lips to fracas you don't know what we don't know what that is.

But if it says he uses his eyes to see, we perceive then that he is able to take in information reports as the arm of the Lord is not shortly can heal doesn't have arm so severe is not deftly does not here.

In fact, it even says that he covers us with his feathers doesn't mean that God is a chicken or a doctor.


But God reduces himself in this very important with what's called antral or theism that comes from two Greek words enter Bossman morph a body.

Terms of the body of a man, God reveals himself to us in terms that are understood in human life so that we can perceive what is this happening from the only vantage point we could ever perceive that some humans are so it is not to say that God changes minor Ahlers's position or overseas view, it is to say that it appears that way from the human viewpoint when good. For example, anytime you pray the same sequences going on. You pray in the Lord heal somebody. God changes my would gotta feel the person anyway.

It's a very difficult question because the will of God only was the healer person. So what you prayed or notů Heal the person except for the fact that you are praying was part of the process for God to heal the first so that was in the plan to very difficult. Now you're trying to screw the inscrutable soon so when God told Moses that I will destroy these people even if Moses had not prayed, God would not destroy the people know because there what you know he can't say if he hadn't pray because he did. In other words, God, God is talking to Moses in human terms to draw him to pray for the people.

That's part of the plan. God knew what he would do an in again. God is reducing himself to a conversation perceivable to the human mind is the only way we can understand okay and its elites and then I granted leave some tough there is after.

But someday will knows were known, this is grace to you with John MacArthur thanks for tuning in. We broke from our regular schedule today to air a special time of Bible questions and answers. John, I love these Q&A sessions and one thing our listeners need to know is you don't know what questions are coming at you. You don't get to review a list of these at a time. You just up there and these, you blind and yet always it seems to me you have an answer that draws on some biblical principle or some key text in Scripture it's it's a really good illustration of how sufficient the Bible is for whatever question we might have. Ultimately, the Bible has some truth that gives us an answer yet. I enjoy the Q&A sessions and I feel comfortable doing it because of the fact that all the answers are in the one book so II might not be able to answer philosophical questions because I would have to be widely read to understand philosophy, but when it comes to biblical questions.

Having spent my life in the Bible. I know essentially what God's word says about most people's questions.

The point of writing the MacArthur study Bible notes.

Well, now what 25 years ago was to put the answers in the Bible so the people don't need to ask the question right then ask them anyway. Well, they always want to go beyond what you give an answer in the notes in the MacArthur study Bible.

And that's fine as far as it goes, but that leads to another question right that's that's great.

I love that as well.

But a good place to start with all your questions and if you're if you're reading the Bible you will have questions. A great place to start getting answers is with a copy of the MacArthur study Bible. The 25,000 footnotes on every single page explaining what you're reading in the Scripture giving you background, culture, geography, language that all is part of getting to the meaning of the text explaining hard to understand passages in all those kinds of things so you need to have a copy of the MacArthur study Bible comes in the new American Standard which I use the new King James the ESV it's available in Spanish, German, French, Russian, Chinese, Italian, Arabic, Portuguese, and of course great prices is always from Grace to you. Get a copy of the MacArthur study Bible and you'll have the notes that explain the meaning of the Bible and so many of your questions will be answered yes this all in one spiritual library can help you understand God's word like you never have before. To order a copy of the MacArthur study Bible for yourself or as a gift get in touch today.

Call toll-free 855 grace or visit our website Jide Again, the MacArthur study Bible is available in several English and non-English translations as well as in hardcover leather soft in premium leather prices are reasonable and shipping is free to see all the choices. Call 855 grace for shop and let me remind you of the impact you have when you support grace to you.

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