Daily Bible Nugget #315, Revelation 14:11

The Nugget:

Revelation 14:11 And the smoke of their torment ascendeth up for ever and ever: and they have no rest day nor night, who worship the beast and his image, and whosoever receiveth the mark of his name.

My Comment:

I received an email or two lately from John Little. He included information that Dr. John McArthur failed to answer a Bible question correctly. If the report is accurate, this time I must say I agree with Mr. John Little, and disagree with Dr. John MacArthur.

The question was: Can a person who has received the Mark of the Beast ever be saved?

Dr. MacArthur’s answer: Yes.

The Bible’s answer: No.

Now it may be that Dr. John MacArthur has studied this matter more thoroughly than I have and has a sound, Bible-based reason for his answer.

Just now, I have worked as far as Revelation, chapter 7, where I am ready to begin “step 5″ in my process for expanding the cross references for Bible study. It will be a while before I get as far as Revelation chapter 14. But as far as I know from my studies to this point, Dr. MacArthur must be mistaken, according to the verse cited above as today’s Daily Bible Nugget #315, Revelation 14:11.

If you have noticed my “Daily Nuggets” have not been “Daily” for the last two weeks, you have been a careful observer. There are many days when I have not been able to access the Internet.

But back to Dr. John MacArthur’s apparently mistaken answer. Mr. John Little attributes the error to Dr. MacArthur’s commitment to a mistaken view of Bible prophecy, namely, his belief in the Pre-tribulation Rapture. I have quite thoroughly answered Mr. John Little’s position on the matter of the Rapture, and you can see my several-part answer to his position at the right under the Category “Bible Prophecy.” Belief in the Pre-tribulation Rapture does not necessarily lead to the error Dr. John MacArthur made in his answer. There are many who believe and teach the Pre-tribulation Rapture who do not teach that those who have received the Mark of the Beast can still be saved.

I heard Dr. John MacArthur last week discuss 1 Thessalonians 4:17 in depth. He spent a good part of the program–I’m thankful that is the part I heard–trying to debunk the position I have taken in my note on that verse in The New Treasury of Scripture Knowledge. As I have Henry Alford (see the note in his Greek New Testament for this passage) and also George N. H. Peters on my side, I think I will kindly suggest Dr. John MacArthur has not done his homework on 1 Thessalonians 4:17. Dr. MacArthur offered no explicit Biblical evidence to counter the view of my note. By the way, he did not mention my note, and it is possible though unlikely that he was criticizing some other source. But in any case, I think he employed ad hominem argument rather than careful Bible exegesis to make his point.

The point of my note is that the Greek text of 1 Thessalonians 4:17 does not necessarily require that when we are caught up in the Rapture to be with Christ that we continue with Christ back to the Third Heaven for seven years. That is what most prophecy teachers say it means, but they are likely not correct. Rather, when Christ returns to this earth at the Rapture, though we meet Him in the air, we subsequently accompany Him to this earth to a place Paul in his abbreviated discussion did not identify. But if anyone takes the time to follow the cross references I have provided, they will discover Scripture is not altogether silent on this issue. Dr. John MacArthur rather cavalierly rejected the idea that we go up to meet Christ only to come right down again with a comment about just why bother having us meet Him in the air if we merely accompany Him to the earth almost immediately?

There are many who utilize this ploy to dispose of a doctrinal position they choose to disagree with. That is the opposite of Real Bible Study.

I’ve heard some pastors on the radio over the years who gave forth an excellent Gospel message, and I am thankful for their ministry. Yet some of them have struck me as individuals who have made no progress in their independent study of the Bible since they left seminary. They never speak of learning anything new to them in their study of the Bible. They never speak of having to change their mind or otherwise adjust their thinking based on newly learned information from the Bible they had not encountered before. I think those dear pastors are missing much they could gain from their Bible by doing Real Bible Study.

Once in a while I wonder if Dr. John MacArthur continues to study the Bible in a manner that leads him to new truths in the Bible he had not seen before. I don’t recall him mentioning such experiences during the radio programs I have heard. Yet I’m quite sure he studies the Bible most faithfully. I do think he has over-committed himself to the position of holding to full five-point Calvinism. Dr. MacArthur is excellent when he is not promoting that doctrinal error (monergism is an error–the Bible clearly teaches synergism: Greek grammar itself employs the middle voice in the New Testament to show that the individual has a part in his salvation by obeying the command to believe in Christ). Dr. J. Sidlow Baxter wrote a book whose title says it all: His Part and Ours. When it comes to understanding Bible prophecy, I do believe Dr. John MacArthur would be helped further by making a careful study of George N. H. Peters’ work, The Theocratic Kingdom, as would anyone else interested in the study of Bible prophecy.

Well, who am I–an unknown author, and a retired English teacher–to criticize some of the best known Bible teachers in our day? It may be, that I have done a little bit of Real Bible Study myself from time to time. The evidence is posted everywhere on this website for all to see and learn from.

For those who desire to DIG DEEPER into this subject:

(1) Consult the cross references given in Nelson’s Cross Reference Guide to the Bible on page 1508 for Revelation 14:11.

(2) Consult the cross references given in The New Treasury of Scripture Knowledge on page 1527 or in Logos 5 Bible software for Revelation 14:11.

(3) Lacking access to those two resources, consult the cross references for this passage as I have developed them as given below:

Revelation 14:11. smoke. Re 9:2. 18:9, 18. 19:3. Ge 19:28. +*Is 33:14. >Is 34:10. Joel 2:30. Mt 13:50. *Lk 16:23. torment. Re *20:10. Mt 18:34. Lk 16:23-28. for ever. Gr. aion, +Re 1:6. Re 4:9, 10. 5:13, 14. 7:12. +*Re 11:15. 20:10. 22:5. Ex 15:18. Ps 10:16. 145:1. +*Mt 25:41, 46. +*He 1:8. *Jude 1:7. no rest. T#573-3. Re 4:8. Dt 28:65. Ps 95:11. *Is 57:20, 21. Mt 11:28. *Mk 9:43-49. Lk 16:24, 25. He 3:18. day nor night. +Lk 18:7. who worship. ver. Re 14:9. +*Re 13:14-16. the mark. Re 13:17. *Re 19:20.

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Daily Bible Nugget #314, Mark 10:45

The Nugget:

Mark 10:45 For even the Son of man came not to be ministered unto, but to minister, and to give his life a ransom for many. (KJV)

Mark 10:45 For even the Son of Man came not to be served, but to serve, and to give His life a means of deliverance in behalf of many.” (Lavender NT)

My Comment:

There are at least two expressions in this verse (Mark 10:45) that may lead to misunderstanding its message. I see the term “ransom” as a point of difficulty. I also see the expression “for many” as problematical. A third point may well involve our understanding of “for” in the expression “for many.”

The expression “for many” is found also at Matthew 26:28,

Matthew 26:28 For this is my blood of the new testament, which is shed for many for the remission of sins.

I provided the following cross references and note at Matthew 26:28 in The New Treasury of Scripture Knowledge which may help explain the meaning of “for many,” when we naturally would expect the expression “for all.” As presently translated by the KJV, the expression “for many” might appear to support the mistaken doctrine of “limited atonement.”

which is shed. Mt 1:21. Mk 10:45. Jn 10:11. 11:50-53. *Ro 8:32-34. +*1 Cor 15:3. Ga 1:4. Ep 5:25-27. He 2:17. 3:1. 9:28. 10:3, 4. for. Gr. peri (S#4012g). **Mt 20:28n. many. *FS171F, Is +53:12. Notice that when “many” is used in a contrast (as with one, or one person, Christ), it clearly means all (**Ro 5:12, 15, 19). +*Mt 20:28. +Is 53:12. Mk 10:45. +*Jn 1:9. **Ro 5:12, 15, %+*Ro 5:18, 19. *Ep 1:7. *Col 1:14, 20. *He 9:22, 28. *1 J 2:2. *Re 7:9, 14.

Probably Romans 5:19 is the clearest example to show that “many” is sometimes used to express the idea of “all,”

Romans 5:19 For as by one man’s disobedience many were made sinners, so by the obedience of one shall many be made righteous.

Paul by his words “one man’s disobedience” has reference to Adam. By Adam’s disobedience, many were made sinners, Paul states. In actuality, all have been made sinners, for Paul clearly tells us that “all have sinned and come short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23). This, then, is a clear example of the use of “many” to mean “all.”

The concept of “ransom” in Mark 10:45 is better understood to mean “means of deliverance” as rendered in the Lavender New Testament quoted above.

The Lavender New Testament provides the following note for Mark 10:45,
means of deliverance:

See Matt 20:28 on discussion of lutron, means of deliverance. It is vital to have a clear understanding that the Son of Man came to serve…to give His life as Priest and Sacrifice or as Offerer and Offering; accordingly, He offered up Himself (Heb 7:27, note g; cf. He 9:14, 26). Consequently, the atonement is Priestly-Sacrificial; thus the Atonement is intrinsically in Himself, and not extrinsic as in penal atonement.

The Lavender New Testament provides the following note for Mark 10:45,
in behalf of:

In behalf of translates the preposition anti. Here we note an off premise argument for substitutionary atonement. Dana and Mantey say that Atonement is penal or substitutionary, and so instead of. They give three sentences from Gen 22:13; 44:33; and Num 3:12 where anti is used, and claim these references “unmistakably deal with
substitution” (§ 107). But the greater issue is the context of substitution, which they do not mention, and that is precisely the point when it comes to Christ’s Atonement – context. We add to what they have already correctly observed with respect to the Genesis and Numbers passages: Yes, these passages “unmistakably deal with substitution” in their context, but not in contexts dealing with the Atonement of Christ! Note that an option is present in these passages. For an example, in Gen 22:13, the point that they did not bring out, Abraham had the option of two offerings: his son, or the ram; and obviously we translate anti (instead of) in a substitutionary sense, one in place of another – the animal in place of (anti) the human being. But the obvious sense in Gen 22:13 is absurd when applied to Calvary. At Calvary there was one option, and only one! God provided no other, as on the mount for Abraham. Thus, at Calvary, there can be no substitution of the Self-sufficient One. There none takes His place; there He takes the place of none. There in utter Self-sufficiency of Himself, by Himself, in Divinity and blood, He makes Atonement in behalf of, not instead of, every son and daughter of Adam’s fallen race, for there is no other Atoning sacrifice!

“Christ died in our behalf, not in our place. Man was dead in sin; Christ did not take our place there. Man was under punishment of the Fall and eternal punishment imminently; Christ was not under punishment whatsoever.

“Christ, a being of another order, took His place in Atonement in the sphere of His being – the God-man. He did not condescend to our place in any sense – to be made sin, to take our punishment due to sin, etc. He was truly Incarnate, but in no sense did He take, or partake of, our fallen nature or the punishment due it. He effected Atonement, not by substitution, but in the merit of His Person, His other than nature, by Divinity and humanity in bloodshed and death! (Cf. Gal 3:13 and note; See use and agreement of prepositions in Atonement passages: Appendix 4).”

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Daily Bible Nugget #313, Galatians 3:13

The Nugget:

Gal 3:13 Christ hath redeemed us from the curse of the law, being made a curse for us: for it is written, Cursed is every one that hangeth on a tree:

My Comment:

The Atonement of Christ is a central doctrine of New Testament teaching. None of us have been helped in our understanding of this doctrine by the very mistaken translations of important Atonement terms and related salvation vocabulary that have been present in all of our English Bible translations.

Historically, the problem stems from the failure of the Protestant Reformers to understand these doctrines correctly. They simply brought over into Protestantism and Protestant Bible translations the salvation vocabulary they had learned from the Roman Catholic Church.

I pointed out in the last two or three Bible Nuggets that a major clue to the fact that something is very wrong in our understanding of Bible doctrine is the contradiction between Romans 2:13 and Romans 3:20. At Romans 2:13 it is proper to translate the underlying Greek word by the English word “justify.” But to translate the same underlying Greek word by the same English word “justify” at Romans 3:20 results in a contradiction.

In Romans 3:20 and most other places where the underlying Greek term appears in the New Testament, when it does not directly refer to the Old Testament dispensation, the term should not be translated “justify” but “made righteous.”

The mistaken theology which has led to much mistranslation in the New Testament portion of our English Bibles has to do with the Atonement of Christ. There are a number of different “atonement theories,” nearly all of them seriously mistaken on major points. But the chief culprit is known as the “penal satisfaction theory of the Atonement.” This theory was propounded historically by Augustine and very beautifully by Anselm. At first look, it seems to be in accord with the Bible, and all of us who have learned anything of theology and Bible doctrine at all have been taught this theory.

I raised this question before:

So what difference does it make?

You be the judge.

If the Bible teaches one thing, but we are being taught another, does it matter at all?

I say it does.

So what is so wrong with the “penal atonement theory”?

First, something must be very wrong if in the effort to support this theory we are provided wrong translations of our Bible!

The penal atonement theory claims that our Lord Jesus Christ was punished for our sins. The Bible says no such thing.

The penal atonement theory claims that our Lord Jesus Christ paid the penalty for our sin on the cross. The Bible says no such thing.

The penal atonement theory claims that our Lord Jesus Christ became our substitute when He died in our place. The Bible says no such thing.

The penal atonement theory claims the righteousness of Christ is imputed to us when we believe on Him. The Bible says no such thing when it is correctly translated.

The penal atonement theory claims our sins are forgiven when we believe on Christ. The Bible when correctly translated says no such thing. Forgiveness is a legal action where no real change occurs in the one forgiven for the change takes place in the attitude of the forgiver toward the one forgiven. That is not what Bible salvation is about. Bible salvation is about the removal of sin in this life through the power of regenerative change wrought by the Holy Spirit in the life of every believer. That regenerative change produces the fruit of the Spirit (Galatians 5:22, 23) in our life providing the power to live above sin and in righteousness.

The penal atonement theory attributes no more efficacy to the blood of Christ than it attributes to the blood of the Levitical animal sacrifices under the Law, for the penal atonement theory and its advocates deny that the blood of Christ produces any change in this life, directly contrary to the affirmations of the New Testament.

The seriousness of these matters is briefly expressed in the note at Galatians 3:13 in the forthcoming Lavender New Testament, which I cite below at the cross references given for Galatians 3:13. Please read that note carefully and repeatedly until you understand it.

On another note, you may have noticed I have not posted any Bible Nuggets for nearly a week. The Internet has been “out” in my area, perhaps because of severe thunderstorms, I have not directly heard. I am to be visited tomorrow to have my service checked out carefully. I noticed that the Internet is now on today, but sometimes it goes off unexpectedly. I wish to thank those who have expressed concern.

For those who desire to DIG DEEPER into this subject:

(1) Consult the cross references given in Nelson’s Cross Reference Guide to the Bible on pages 1350-1351 for Galatians 3:13.

(2) Consult the cross references given in The New Treasury of Scripture Knowledge on page 1370 or in Logos 5 Bible software for Galatians 3:13.

(3) Lacking access to those two resources, consult the cross references for this passage as I have developed them as given below:

Galatians 3:13. Christ. +*1 Cor 15:3. hath redeemed. Gr. exagorazō (S#1805g: Ga 4:5. Ep 5:16. Col 4:5). T#834. See on ver. Ga 3:10. **Ga 4:4, 5. Ge 8:21. 22:9. Ex 32:30. Le 4:20. 8:17. **+Le 16:22. 27:28. Nu 28:30. +*Ps 107:2. Is 35:9. 41:14. 42:7. 49:9. *Is 53:5-7, 10-12. Da 2:8. +*Da 9:24, 26. *Zc 13:7. Mt 20:28. +*Mt 26:28. *Mk 10:45. +*Ro 3:24-26. *Ro 4:25. 7:4. 8:3, 4. 1 Cor 1:30. 5:7. *1 Cor 6:20. **2 Cor 5:21. *Ep 1:7. 5:2, 16. *Col 1:13, 14. 4:5g. +*1 Th 1:10. *Titus 2:14. *He 7:26, 27. 9:12, 14, 15, 26, 28. 10:4-10. 1 P 1:18-21. *1 P 2:24. *1 P 3:18. +2 P 2:1. **1 J 2:1, 2. 4:10. +*Re 1:5. 5:9. 13:8. 22:3. us. i.e. the Jewish believers; as occasionally in his writings the Apostle here associates himself with his nationals, compare Ep 1:11, 12 with Ep 1:13. The Gentiles were not under the law; indeed the law was itself the “middle wall” that divided them from the Jews; see Ep 2:14, 15 (Hogg & Vine, p. 134). from the curse of the law. ver. *Ga 3:10n. %*Ge 22:18. Le 15:28. Dt 11::26. **Dt 27:15-26. *Dt 28:15. 30:15. *Pr 3:33. **Pr 26:2. Is 42:21. +*Da 9:11. +*Zc 5:3. *Mal 3:9, %Mal 3:11. +Mt 25:41. **Ro 7:6. *Ro 8:1. being made a curse. FS121N2, +Ge 34:29. This is one of the verses used in an effort to prove that Christ was under a curse, under penalty of sin upon the tree. Christ became a curse in the sense that He hung upon a tree, and only in that sense! Paul did not finish the quotation in his reference to Dt 21:23 for obvious reasons; he left off accursed of God because Christ was not under the penalty of sin whatsoever! Sin was not judged in the Person of Christ at Calvary. Atonement is not what was done to Christ, it is what He did (cf. Jn 10:17-18). As the Priest, He offered Himself, the Sacrifice (cf. Ep 5:2; He 7:27; 9:14; 10:12). Atonement does not consist in an outside extrinsic force of God’s wrath penally poured out upon Christ, satisfying justice. Atonement is internalized in the Person of Christ—”And He, Himself, is Atonement….” (1 J 2:2)—and not externalized by punishing Him. By the innate merit of His Person, Atonement is He—by Him, through Him, of Him in Triune Oneness with the Godhead. And so, Atonement stands wrought in the merit of His Person. The validating efficacy is Divinity, the bloodshed is in His humanity. He offered himself through Himself. Had there not been a Divine Self through Whom to offer himself (hypostatical union), sin could not have been removed and we would be where the Levitical animal and the Calvinists left us—in sin. The Reformation, Calvinists, and Jews have in common that they esteem Him stricken, smitten by God (cf. Is 53:12). But God is one God; thus the Punisher and the punished cannot be one! Atonement by punishment is false to the Scriptures, blasphemes Christ (cf. 2 C 5:21), destroys the Trinity (cf. Mt 27:46), contaminates the purity of the Sacrifice (cf. Le 22:19-22; Dt 17:1; Ml 1:8, 13-14; He 9:14; 1 P 1:18-19), limits the Atonement (cf. 2 C 5:14; 1 J 2:2), and results in salvation concepts on the level of the Law (cf. Ro 2:13; Ep 1:7), thus stripping the Gospel of its saving essence and transforming power! (Cf. Ro 3:20-31; 5:1; Ep 4:24; Col 3:9-10). Atonement by punishment is a satanic perversion of Christ’s work on the cross! The greatest urgency of our time is that the people of God rise up and take Calvary back! (Cf. 1 C 1:18 and note) [LNT, fn k]. Le 16:27. +=Le 23:19. 2 K 22:19. Is 53:4, 10. Je 44:22. 49:13. Da 9:27x. Mt 27:46. *Lk 22:37. Jn 18:32. Ro 9:3. 1 Cor 12:3n. *2 Cor 5:21. *He 13:11, 12. for us. 2 S 17:23. 18:10, 14, 15. 21:3, 9. Est 7:10. 9:14. Mt 26:38. 27:5. Mk 10:45. +*Jn 1:29. *Jn 10:15. 11:51. Ac 10:45. Ro 8:34. *1 P 2:24. for it is written. **Jn 5:46. Cursed. Ga 1:8. >Dt 21:23. Jsh 10:26, 27. Ps 37:22. 88:16. +*Ps 119:21. Ac 23:12. hangeth. Ge 40:19. *Dt 21:22n, 23n. 2 S 18:9. 21:9. Est 8:7. 9:13. Mk 15:24. Lk 23:33. Jn 12:32. 19:18. +Ac 5:30. Phil 2:8. tree. FS121D8, +Ge 40:19. Ac 5:30. 10:39.

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Daily Bible Nugget #312, Romans 3:24

The Nugget:

Romans 3:24 Being justified freely by his grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus:

My Comment:

Here is an example of a verse where the word justified should be translated made righteous. This is so because the term justified applies exclusively to the Old Testament era, the time before our Lord Jesus Christ died upon the cross for us. When the underlying Greek word has reference to the Old Testament dispensation of what was done under the law, it is properly translated justified. When that same underlying Greek word pertains to this dispensation reflecting what Christ has made possible for us, it should be translated made righteous.

The unmistakable clue that leads to this distinction is the apparent contradiction between Romans 2:13 and Romans 3:20 previously discussed.

And so, what difference does all this make?

Because we have all been reading mistaken Bible translations, some essential truths about the Atonement of Christ and its benefits for us have been obscured, if not altogether lost.

How we understand the Atonement of Christ has great impact in how we understand its benefits, and to what extent, if any, we are able to live the Christian life in the power of those benefits.

For those who desire to DIG DEEPER into this subject:

(1) Consult the cross references given in Nelson’s Cross Reference Guide to the Bible on page 1277 for Romans 3:24.

(2) Consult the cross references given in The New Treasury of Scripture Knowledge on page 1297 or in Logos 5 Bible software for Romans 3:24.

(3) Lacking access to those two resources, consult the cross references for this passage as I have developed them as given below:

Romans 3:24. justified. or, made righteous. ver. Ro 3:20n. *Ro 4:16. 5:1, 16-19. **Ro 8:30. Is 45:25. Ac 13:39. *1 Cor 6:11. *Ep 2:7-10. **Titus 3:5-7. freely. The word implies that nothing, whether it be faith or works, that precedes justification, can avail to deserve it (Liddon). Ro 4:4, 5. Nu 14:18. Is 52:3. 55:1. Ho 14:4. +Mt 10:8. Lk 7:42. +Jn 15:25. 2 Cor 11:7. 2 Th 3:8. Re 21:6. 22:17. by his grace. The grace of Almighty God is the original source of this free gift (Liddon). ver. Ro 3:28. Ro 4:4, 5, 16. 5:1, 9. Je 9:24. +*Jn 1:17. *+Ac 11:23. 13:43. +Ac 15:11. 20:24. 2 Cor 5:19. Ep 1:6. 2:5, 8. 2 Tim 1:18. Titus 3:7. through. ver. Ro 3:25. *Ro 5:9. Ex 40:29. Le 4:25, 35. 12:7. Nu 7:15. *Is 53:5, 11. Zc 9:9. 13:7. +*Mt 20:28. 1 Cor 1:30. +Ga 3:13. *Ep 1:6, 7. 2:13. *Col 1:13, 14. 1 Tim 2:6. **Titus 2:14. He 2:10. 9:2-15. *1 P 1:18, 19. 2:24. Re 5:9. 7:14. redemption. Gr. apolutrōsis (S#629g). Ro 8:23g. Jb 33:24. Is 1:27. 45:13. Da 4:32. +Lk 1:68. 21:28g. *1 Cor 1:30g. *1 Cor 7:23. *Ep 1:7g, 14g. +*Ep 4:30g. *Col 1:14g. He 9:15g. 11:35g (deliverance). that is in. Nu 35:25. Christ Jesus. Ro 6:3, 11, 23. +Ac 24:24. 1 Cor 15:3. Ga 3:17. 1 Tim 1:15. 1 J 3:5.

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Daily Bible Nugget #311, Romans 3:20

The Nugget:

Romans 3:20 Therefore by the deeds of the law there shall no flesh be justified in his sight: for by the law is the knowledge of sin. (AV/KJV)

Romans 3:20 because no flesh will be made righteous before Him by means of works of law, for by law is full knowledge of sin. (Lavender NT)

My Comment:

As translated by all the translations I have on this computer, all English translations are in error except the Lavender NT here. All other translations produce a contradiction with Romans 2:13,

Romans 2:13 (For not the hearers of the law are just before God, but the doers of the law shall be justified. (AV/KJV)

Romans 2:13 For not the hearers of the Law are just before God, but the
doers of the Law will be justified. (Lavender NT)

Under the Law, “doers of the law shall be justified” (Romans 2:13).

Under Grace, believers in Christ are made righteous, not merely justified, apart from the works of the Law. Believers are not justified by the Law.

The Lavender New Testament provides the following note for Romans 2:13 on the word “justified”:

“Justified, dikaioō, is used here, as in a few other places in Romans as under Law. When used as under Law dikaioō means declared just, acquitted, righteousness imputed, but under grace dikaioō means to make righteous (cf. Ro 3:24, 26, 28, 30; 5:1, 9, 19; 8:30, 33); further, these meanings accord with the respective systems as to ability to put away sin. Under the Law the blood of Levitical animals could not take away sins (cf. Heb 10:4, 11); thus the sins of God’s people were “passed over” and they were declared righteous. But the blood of Christ, under the better covenant, does what the Law could never do – takes away sin. Regenerative change of the inner man was not possible under Law (cf. Ro 3:20); these conditions thus verify the need to justify. But in Christ there is a power not known under Law; in Christ there is a power by which sinners may be made righteous (cf. Ro 3:20-31).”

The Lavender New Testament provides the following note for “made righteous” for Romans 3:20,

“Made righteous: Even though the Jews were in the sphere of the Law, it was unable to make them righteous because under the Law the blood of the Levitical animals could not take away sins (cf. Heb 10:4, 11). The Law could justify, but it could not make righteous (see Ro 2:13 and note).”

In his commentary on Romans (page 20), Dr. Malcolm Lavender states:

“(1) Under the Law men were justified by a forensic act of God, or a legal declaration, and so, counted righteous, not made righteous.

(2) The ground for legal justification consisted in the fact that the Law could not make righteous (Romans 3:20; Hebrews 10:4, 11). But God in righteous forbearance passed over sins, until Calvary (Romans 3:25; cf. Acts 17:30).

(3) Thus in Romans 3:20, no flesh will be made righteous [not justified] in His sight under law. But now a man is made righteous [not justified] by faith (Romans 3:28) on the ground of the shed blood of Christ (Romans 3:25) apart from law (Romans 3:21).

(4) Here we establish the meaning of dikaioō in Romans and, indeed, in the NT: Under the Law dikaioō was forensic, to justify, to declare righteous, but in the NT it means to make righteous on the ground of the blood of Christ. We now have the reality of the “how much more” efficacy (Hebrews 9:14) of the blood transcendently exceeding the “counting as righteous” under the Levitical animal that never could “take away sins” (Hebrews 10:11).

(5) Reformation theology, and all forms of Calvinism, have destroyed the salvation vocabulary of the NT, by perverting the meaning of dikaioō to a legal status. The blood of Christ, the Son of God, has been reduced to an EQUALITY with the blood of the Levitical animal–neither remove sin or make righteous in this life.”

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Daily Bible Nugget #310, Romans 2:13

The Nugget:

Romans 2:13 (For not the hearers of the law are just before God, but the doers of the law shall be justified.

My Comment:

Have you ever found a contradiction in the Bible? Probably you haven’t.

So, let me show you one.

Romans 2:13 clearly states that “the doers of the law shall be justified.”

Now here is the verse in the Bible that rather obviously contradicts Romans 2:13. You will find that there is a contradiction between Romans 2:13 and Romans 3:20,

Romans 3:20 Therefore by the deeds of the law there shall no flesh be justified in his sight: for by the law is the knowledge of sin.

Do you see the contradiction?

To say “the doers of the law shall be justified” contradicts “by the deeds of the law shall no flesh be justified.”

If you have your “thinking cap” on, this obvious contradiction should “raise red flags” or “turn the light on” in your mind.


Because we know for sure that the Bible never contradicts itself.

You should immediately recognize that something is very wrong here.

And indeed, something is most certainly very wrong.

When we encounter a contradiction in the Bible, that should grab our attention. We should seek to find out what is the cause or basis of the contradiction. Sometimes when we encounter a contradiction, we realize we have been mistaken in our prior understanding of a subject related to the Bible. We need to then correct our understanding by changing our mind, by modifying our position, so that it is in accord with the Bible.

Sometimes a contradiction may appear because we lack the full information on the subject as it is revealed or taught in the Bible. In that case, we need to do a more thorough study of the subject from the Bible to be sure to come up with a correct understanding. In such a case, we must learn to change our mind and accept the new and fuller teaching from the Bible that resolves the apparent contradiction.

Sometimes a contradiction is created by the translators who themselves held a mistaken view of Bible doctrine. That is the reason Romans 2:13 appears to contradict Romans 3:20.

This is a very serious matter.

In this case, the issue extends far beyond Romans 2:13 and Romans 3:20. The matter is of utterly critical importance, for misunderstanding here leads to a total misunderstanding of Bible doctrine as it pertains to the basis of salvation. It leads to or produces a total misunderstanding of what our Lord Jesus Christ accomplished when He went to the cross. It produces a wrong understanding of the Atonement of Christ. And if you don’t think that is a serious matter, you had better think again. Go back over what I have written ever so briefly above about the seriousness of contradictions.

In this particular example using Romans 2:13 and Romans 3:20 the contradiction must be resolved by noting the fact that the term “justified” is used in two very different senses, and that for strict clarity and accuracy though the same Greek word underlies our English translation “justified” in both verses, the first passage (Romans 2:13) is in reference to Old Testament times before the coming of Christ, when sinners could only be justified in a legal or forensic sense because the Law could not bring about regenerative change. The sinner could be forgiven, but sin was not removed: the forgiven sinner continued in sin, powerless to do otherwise, and so the necessity of a continuing sacrifice involving Levitical offerings and an annual Day of Atonement, because such sacrifices were unable to take away sin (Hebrews 10:4, 11).

Now that Christ has come and made the once-for-all permanent sacrifice for our sins as our great High Priest, sins are not merely forgiven, but rather removed, because of His priestly-sacrificial Atonement. In this dispensation of the Gospel, those who truly believe in Christ are transformed such that a regenerative change (Titus 3:5) takes place and believers are made new creatures in Christ (2 Corinthians 5:17).

To suggest otherwise is a terrible case of doctrinal error. To suggest otherwise is to relegate the effectiveness of the blood of Christ to an effectiveness no different from what was accomplished by the blood of Levitical animals in the Old Testament dispensation. If that is the dispensation you are unwittingly holding on to or living in, you are not experiencing the full reality of the salvation benefits Christ has provided for you.

Perhaps now you perceive the importance of finding apparent contradictions and studying the Bible closely enough to resolve them.

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Daily Bible Nugget #309, John 6:14

The Nugget:

John 6:14 Then those men, when they had seen the miracle that Jesus did, said, This is of a truth that prophet that should come into the world.

My Comment:

The thirteenth proof for the Perspicuity of Scripture is the amazing knowledge of the Scripture exhibited by ordinary people among the populace as well as the leaders in the time of Christ (The New Treasury of Scripture Knowledge, Topic Number 1122, page 1598).

During a home Bible study with several members of my high school Sunday school class we, without planning to do so, began to brainstorm the subject of what the ordinary people or their leaders knew about the Bible as revealed in the New Testament. I am thankful that at the time I wrote down the Scripture references to the passages we found. I placed those collected references at John 6:14 as Topic Number 1122 in The New Treasury of Scripture Knowledge.

I believe there is much to be learned from this set of references. First, the common people in Israel and their leaders knew much about the Scripture–probably more than many of us today. Second, that they had such a broad understanding of the Scriptures pertaining to their promised Messiah shows they bear great responsibility for failing to recognize Jesus Christ as their Messiah. Third, that this knowledge was as diverse and widespread as we read it to be in the New Testament surely proves the Perspicuity of Scripture, for however they learned these truths they themselves mention–whether by hearing the Scripture read to them, or whether they read the Scriptures for themselves, surely that they understood them to such a degree demonstrates the Bible is understandable.

The only way I know to convey to readers here the thrill of the discoveries we made that evening in a home Bible study is to ask that you consider carefully the references we found, now given as Topic Number 1122, for John 6:14, at the key words This is as displayed below, and read the verses to see for yourself. I am posting the references for John 6:14 so that you may enjoy what we found, that it may be an encouragement to your spiritual life as you grow in your knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ (2 Peter 3:18) as we did.

For those who desire to DIG DEEPER into this subject:

(1) Consult the cross references given in Nelson’s Cross Reference Guide to the Bible on pages 1174-1175 for John 6:14.

(2) Consult the cross references given in The New Treasury of Scripture Knowledge on page 1196 or in Logos 5 Bible software for John 6:14.

(3) Lacking access to those two resources, consult the cross references for this passage as I have developed them as given below:

John 6:14. seen the miracle. ver. +Jn 6:2. Jn 2:23. 1 S 10:7. Ac 2:22. said. Jn 7:12, 31. This is. T#1122. Jn 1:21, 41, 45, 49. 7:31, 40-42, 52. 12:34. +*Da 11:33n. Mt 2:1, 2, 4-6. 10:15. 11:2-6, 22-24. 12:23. Mk 6:11, 15. Lk 2:25-35, 36-38. 7:16, 19-23. 9:19. 10:12-16. 19:11. 23:42, 43. 24:17-21. Ac 1:6. 17:6, 7. 26:26, 27. of a truth. Gr. alēthōs (S#230g, Mt 14:33). Jn 7:40. 8:30. Mt 14:33. Lk 4:25. 9:27. 12:44. 21:3. 22:59. Ac 4:27. 10:34. 1 Cor 14:25. that prophet. Jn 1:21, 25. +Jn 4:19, 25, 42. *Jn 7:40. 9:17. +*Ge 49:10. **Dt 18:15-18. +Mt 11:3. +Mt 21:11. Mk 6:15. Lk 7:16. 24:19. Ac 3:21-24. 7:37. should come. Jn 11:27. +Mt 11:3. world. Gr. kosmos, +Mt 4:8.

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Daily Bible Nugget #308, Acts 17:11

The Nugget:

Acts 17:11 These were more noble than those in Thessalonica, in that they received the word with all readiness of mind, and searched the scriptures daily, whether those things were so.

My Comment:

The twelfth proof for the Perspicuity of Scripture is that individuals are commended for testing the truth of what the apostles taught by checking those teachings against the Bible (The New Treasury of Scripture Knowledge, Topic Number 1121, page 1598).

If you were to carefully read Acts, chapter 17, you would learn that the Apostle Paul was meticulously teaching from the Scripture that Jesus is the true Messiah. Paul taught that the Scriptures prove that it was necessary that Christ, or the Messiah, must suffer, and then rise from the dead, “and that this Jesus, whom I preach unto you, is Christ” (Acts 17:3). For three Sabbath days Paul reasoned with the Jews of Thessalonica out of the Scriptures. Some of the Jews believed Paul, but others decided to use physical force to drive Paul out of town.

Paul went to Berea and taught the same message out of the Scriptures to the Jews in their synagogue. The Jews of Berea did not resort to physical force to suppress Paul’s message. Instead, they checked out what Paul was teaching by searching the Scriptures daily to discover whether what Paul had to say was really there in the Bible. They found what Paul taught is what the Bible said. Therefore, many of them believed (Acts 17:12). The Bereans had the right approach to spiritual things. They checked out what they were being taught by comparing it carefully with what they found in the Bible. When they found that what they were being taught was true to the Bible, they believed the teaching they had received.

Notice how this proves the doctrine of the Perspicuity of Scripture–that is, that the Bible is understandable. If the Bible were not understandable, the Bereans who attended the synagogue where Paul taught would not have been able to turn to the Scriptures by themselves, that is, on their own, to check out the truth of what Paul was teaching. But the Bereans were able to search the Scriptures daily to verify the truth of Paul’s message. This surely demonstrates most vividly that ordinary individuals were deemed competent to judge the truthfulness and correctness of the teaching of the apostles by comparing the apostolic teaching with what they found in the Bible, the twelfth proof for the Perspicuity of Scripture.

For those who desire to DIG DEEPER into this subject:

(1) Consult the cross references given in Nelson’s Cross Reference Guide to the Bible on page 1250 for Acts 17:11.

(2) Consult the cross references given in The New Treasury of Scripture Knowledge on pages 1270-1271 or in Logos 5 Bible software for Acts 17:11.

(3) Lacking access to those two resources, consult the cross references for this passage as I have developed them as given below:

Acts 17:11. more noble. or, well-born. Gr. eugenēs (S#2104g). High in rank, hence they were more courteous (CB). T#1099. *Ac 13:7. Ge 34:19. 1 Ch 4:9. *Pr 1:5. 9:9. Je 2:21. Lk 19:12g. Jn 1:46-49. 1 Cor 1:26g. Thessalonica. ver. +Ac 17:1. 1 Th 1:1. 2 Tim 4:10. they received. *Ac 2:41. 8:14. 10:33. 11:1. Ne 8:3. +*Jb 23:12. *Pr 2:1-5. **Pr 4:7, 20-22. 8:10. Ec 5:1. Song 8:2. Je 6:16. *Mt 13:11, 23. Mk 4:8. Lk 10:38, 39. 2 Cor 8:5. 1 Th 1:6. **1 Th 2:13. *2 Th 2:10. **James 1:21. **1 P 2:2. the word. Gr. logos, Mk 9:32n. +Ac 8:4. 10:36. *Lk 16:29. readiness of mind. Ac 10:33. %Ac 14:2. 16:14. %+*1 S 25:17. **Ps 25:9. Mk 12:37. *S#4288g: Ac 17:11. 2 Cor 8:11, 12 (willing mind), 2 Cor 8:19 (ready mind). 2 Cor 9:2 (forwardness). This word is used in the New Testament (1) of a ready desire to hear God’s word, and (2) of a ready desire to give to God’s work (Thomas Walker). and searched. or, examined. Gr. anakrinō, *S#350g. Rendered (1) examine: Ac 4:9. 12:19. 24:8. 28:18. Lk 23:14. 1 Cor 9:3. (2) judge: 1 Cor 2:15, 15. 4:3, 3, 4. 14:24. (3) ask question: 1 Cor 10:25, 27. (4) search: Ac 17:11. (5) discern: **1 Cor 2:14. Thayer defines this word “By looking through a series (ana) of objects or particulars to distinguish (krino) or search after. Hence, to investigate, examine, inquire into, scrutinize, sift, question” (Lexicon, p. 39). Compare “search” at Jn 5:39, the same English but a different Greek word (*S#2045g). T#1069. Le 11:3. 1 Ch 28:8. **Ps 1:2, 3. 119:18, 97-100, *Ps 119:148. Pr 2:2. +*Pr 8:9. *Pr 15:14. +**Is 8:20n. *Is 34:16. *Lk 16:29. *Lk 24:44. *Jn 3:21. +**Jn 5:39n, 40. 1 Cor 2:14g. 1 Tim 4:13. +**2 Tim 3:15-16. *1 P 1:10-12. +*2 P 1:19-21. *1 J 4:5, 6. the scriptures. ver. Ac 17:2. Ac 8:28. 26:22, 23. *Ps 119:105. *Ps 138:2. +*Je 15:16. +*Je 23:18, 22, 28, 29. +Mt 21:42. +*Mk 12:24. +*Ro 15:4. 2 Tim 2:15. daily. Ac 16:5. Ex 16:4. *Dt 17:18-20. +*Jsh 1:8. 2 Ch 8:14. Ezr 3:4. *Ne 8:18. +*Ps 1:2. Pr 8:34. Lk 11:3. +*Lk 21:36. +**Col 1:10. +*He 3:13. *He 11:6. *1 P 2:2. *2 P 3:18. whether. or, if. FS184D1, Lk +22:67. A. T. Robertson notes that the Bereans “were eagerly interested in the new message of Paul and Silas but they wanted to see it for themselves. What a noble attitude. Paul’s preaching made Bible students of them. The duty of private interpretation is thus made plain (Hovey)” (Word Pictures, vol. 3, p. 275). T#1059, T#1121. Ac 8:31n. Dt 13:3. +**Pr 14:15. 15:14. *Pr 18:1n, +*Pr 18:17. +**Is 8:20n. Ezk 14:10n. +*Da 11:30. Ho 6:3. +*Mk 4:24. +*Lk 8:18. Jn 4:42. 7:17. **Ro 14:12. 1 Cor 10:15. +*1 Cor 14:29. *2 Cor 4:2. +*Ga 1:8n, 9. **1 Th 5:21. 1 Tim 4:1. James 1:19. *2 P 3:16, 17. **1 J 4:1.

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Daily Bible Nugget #307, Galatians 1:8

The Nugget:

Galatians 1:8 But though we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel unto you than that which we have preached unto you, let him be accursed.

My Comment:

The eleventh proof of the doctrine of the Perspicuity of Scripture is that individuals are deemed both competent and responsible to recognize false doctrine (NTSK, Topic Number 1120, page 1598).

Paul gave the Galatian churches one simple test to determine if doctrine was true or false. If it matched what he had already taught them, it was true. If teaching they heard did not match what he had already taught, it was false.

Today we have the record of what the apostles taught in the New Testament. Any teaching that does not agree with or match what is contained in the Old and New Testament is false doctrine.

This is why it is so important to know your Bible. It is important to both read and study the Bible. Churches, pastors, and Sunday school teachers need to equip those they teach with a good knowledge of Bible doctrine, and the answers to false doctrine. Knowing the answers to false doctrines taught by various groups is part of what is involved in the study of apologetics. This is part and parcel of what is involved in spiritual warfare.

If you have read very far on this site about Real Bible Study you know I frequently address false doctrine, no matter who might be teaching it. To be teaching (or learning/believing) false doctrine is a very serious matter. It can lead you right into apostasy, the aspect I have called doctrinal apostasy. Doctrinal apostasy can lead to loss of salvation as surely as moral apostasy.

The Jews in the time of Jesus were guilty of doctrinal apostasy. Jesus told the Jews, “If ye believe not that I am he, ye shall die in your sins” (John 8:24).

To have a wrong idea of who Jesus is, something the Jews did not understand (John 8:43) or believe (John 5:43, 46), is a most serious failing. In our day, the Jehovah’s Witnesses deny who Jesus really is. They have made a mistake similar to what the Jews made, or perhaps worse. Jehovah’s Witnesses are preaching what Paul called “another gospel”(Galatians 1:6). They are preaching “another Jesus,” whom they equate with the archangel Michael. To believe such error, to follow such error, is to come under the double curse Paul gave in Galatians 1:8, 9. Those who believe and teach such mistaken views of Christ do not possess the kind of saving faith that brings eternal life.

The Jehovah’s Witnesses I have spoken to claim to believe that Jesus is the Son of God, but they deny that Jesus is God the Son. They argue that Jesus is never in the Bible called “God the Son.” That is true. The precise words “God the Son” are not to be found in the Bible. But the teaching that Jesus is God the Son most certainly is. Is Jesus ever called God’s son? Yes–God Himself spoke the very words from heaven (Matthew 3:17). Is Jesus ever called God? Yes. Thomas called Jesus God and was neither corrected nor rebuked for doing so, but commended (John 20:28, 29). So in the New Testament, Jesus is clearly called God and is also identified by God Himself as God’s Son. Therefore, by necessary inference, Jesus must be God the Son as well as the Son of God.

If Jesus is the Son of God in a higher sense than any other person or being, Jesus logically must possess the nature of God His Father–that is, a Divine Nature. Paul says a number of things which bear this out, where in Philippians 2:6, where Paul speaks of Jesus being in the form of God, and Philippians 2:7, where Paul speaks of Jesus being made in the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men. Thus, Jesus had two natures in one Person, a human nature and a divine nature, in whom, Paul writes, dwells the fullness of the Godhead bodily (Colossians 2:9).

When we know the Gospel as it was taught by the original Apostles and Christ Himself–all preserved in the New Testament record for us to study and learn–we can spot a false gospel, another gospel, as soon as it rears its satanic head. This proves the Perspicuity of Scripture, for by it ordinary believers are expected and required to know the difference between true and false doctrine by comparing it to the original doctrine contained in Scripture, the eleventh Biblical proof of the doctrine of the Perspicuity of Scripture.

For those who desire to DIG DEEPER into this subject:

(1) Consult the cross references given in Nelson’s Cross Reference Guide to the Bible on page 1347 for Galatians 1:8.

(2) Consult the cross references given in The New Treasury of Scripture Knowledge on page 1367 or in Logos 5 Bible software for Galatians 1:8.

(3) Lacking access to those two resources, consult the cross references for this passage as I have developed them as given below:

Galatians 1:8. though we. or, even if we. FS102C, +Mt 5:29. FS185B, +Ga 6:1. ver. Ga 1:9. Is 9:15. Je 16:20. *Je 23:16. 1 Cor 16:22. *2 Cor 11:13, 14. 1 Tim 1:19, 20. Titus 3:10. **Re 22:18, 19. an angel. *1 K 13:18n. +*Ro 8:38. **2 Cor 11:14, 15. preach any other. T#1120. Individual Christian believers are here deemed competent to judge the doctrinal correctness of the preaching of an inspired apostle or even an angel from heaven, a very clear assertion of the Bible doctrine of the perspicuity of Scripture (Ps 119:104, 105. Pr 8:9. +Mt 12:3). This doctrine holds that, in all essential matters pertaining to faith and practice (Ps 19:7. 119:9, 11), the Bible is clearly understandable upon careful study to even the humblest believer (Ps 119:99, 100), without the interposition of an institutional or ecclesiastical authority to interpret the Scriptures for him (1 J 2:20, 27). Closely allied to this is the doctrine of the right and necessity of private judgment (Ac 17:11. 1 Cor 14:29. **1 Th 5:21n), which holds that the individual is responsible directly to God for his beliefs (Ro 14:12), and that God will hold him responsible only to believe what is taught in Scripture (Is 8:20), apart from the teachings of humanly devised creeds and institutions, or unwritten traditions however hoary with age. The doctrines of perspicuity and private judgment having been clearly established as scriptural (see the following reference passages and their notes), the conclusion to be drawn is that the ultimate authority in spiritual or doctrinal matters is the written word of God found in the Bible, not the teachings of any man or group of men. Thus there can be no “one true church,” for any church is only “true” insofar as its teachings rest squarely upon and are in accordance with the teachings of the inerrant and infallible verbally inspired word of God in the Bible. +Ps 102:18 (T#49). **Ps 119:105, 130. +*Pr 8:9. +**Is 8:20n. +*Je 23:28n. +*Da 11:33n. Mt 7:15. +*Mt 15:14. Mk 7:7-9. +Lk 12:57 (T#420). +**Jn 5:39n. 16:13n. Ac 8:31n. 15:15. +**Ac 17:11. **Ro 14:12. +*Ro 15:4. 1 Cor 10:15. 14:29. 2 Cor 3:14. +*Ep 4:14. +*Col 1:23. 2:18. **1 Th 5:21. +**2 Tim 3:15-17. **2 P 1:19, 20n. *1 J 2:20, 27. **1 J 4:1, 2. +*2 J 1:10. gospel. 1 Th 1:5. 1 P 5:12. than that. or, contrary to that. *Dt 4:2. *Dt 12:32. *Dt 13:8. Jsh 1:7. +*Pr 30:6. 2 Cor 11:4. **Re 22:18, 19. have preached. FS147A, +Ge 50:24. 1 K 13:20n, 21. let him. Ga 3:10, 13. 5:12n. Ge 9:25. +*Le 15:8. +*Dt 27:15-26. Jsh 9:23. 1 S 26:19. *Ne 13:25. Pr 28:10. +**Je 10:25. +*Mt 15:14. 25:41. 2 P 2:14. accursed. Gr. anathema (S#331g, Ac 23:14). Ga 3:10, 13. Jsh 7:1, 12. Mk 14:71. Ac 23:14. +Ro 9:3. +*1 Cor 12:3n. *1 Cor 16:22g.

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Daily Bible Nugget #306, John 5:24

The Nugget:

John 5:24 Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that heareth my word, and believeth on him that sent me, hath everlasting life, and shall not come into condemnation; but is passed from death unto life.

My Comment:

The tenth proof of the doctrine of the Perspicuity of Scripture is that the Bible must be understandable for each individual is held responsible to hear and believe its message for himself (NTSK, Topic Number 1119, page 1598).

Notice Jesus doubly assures us that those who keep on hearing His Word and keep on believing on the One who sent him continue to have everlasting life. For this to work in an equitable manner, the Word which is being heard must of course be understandable to those who hear it in order for them to be able to believe it. The word Jesus gave, what he here terms “my word,” is now available in only one place–your Bible. Therefore, the Bible must be understandable in order for those who hear or read its message to believe it. That most surely proves the Perspicuity of Scripture, the doctrine that the Bible is understandable to the ordinary person who hears or reads its message.

I remember as a teenager how striking this verse was to me. Now, many years later, it amazes me how much more is taught in this verse than what I understood at the beginning of my Christian life. At first I was most impressed by the portion of the verse which states “and shall not come into condemnation; but is passed from death unto life.” At that time I was taught that the perfect tense underlying “is passed” proved the doctrine of eternal security, for the perfect tense points to a past action with ever continuing results.

I later learned upon further study that the promise of “is passed” is contingent upon meeting the conditions specified at the beginning of the verse: he that keeps on hearing and keeps on believing is now having eternal life, the present tense verbs in the underlying Greek text emphasizing a continuing action, not a one-time single act of faith. Thus, the Bible teaches the absolute eternal security of the believer, not the unbeliever. Thus the doctrine widely taught and believed doctrine called “Once Saved, Always Saved,” or unconditional eternal security, is false to the Bible and is heresy and should not be taught.

Another important truth denied by some churches or denominations or religious organizations is the important fact that we have eternal life now, not merely after we die. And we can know for sure that we have eternal life in this present life and do not have to wait until after we die to find out whether we do or not.

I believe that the Council of Trent has an article which denies this truth. The present Roman Catholic Church’s doctrine is founded in large part upon what was decided or affirmed by the Council of Trent. Unfortunately, the Council of Trent was gravely mistaken on this issue if my memory of what it ruled on this issue is correct.

Well, so much for the validity of Church Councils and man-made creeds. If they agree with the Bible, fine. If they contradict what the Bible clearly affirms, they are of course mistaken. That is why it is best to go by the Bible alone and in its entirety. We can do that with the confidence that the Bible is understandable, and must be so for God to justly hold each of us individually responsible to hear and believe what it teaches. This constitutes the tenth proof of the Perspicuity of the Bible.

For those who desire to DIG DEEPER into this subject:

(1) Consult the cross references given in Nelson’s Cross Reference Guide to the Bible on page 1172 for John 5:24.

(2) Consult the cross references given in The New Treasury of Scripture Knowledge on page 1193 or in Logos 5 Bible software for John 5:24.

(3) Lacking access to those two resources, consult the cross references for this passage as I have developed them as given below:

John 5:24. Verily. ver. Jn 5:19. +Jn 1:51. +*Nu 5:22. +Mt 5:18. +Mk 14:18. He that. T#1119. **Jn 3:16, 18, 36. 6:40, 47. 8:51. *Jn 11:26. 12:44. **Jn 20:31. Mk 16:16. *Ro 10:11-13. **Ro 14:12. 1 P 1:21. **1 J 5:1, 11-13. heareth. +Jn 8:43. 12:37-40. +**Is 55:3. Mt 13:9. +*Mk 4:24. +*Lk 8:18. Ac 3:22. 10:22. Ro 8:17. He 3:7. my word. Gr. logos, Mk 9:32n. believeth. +*Jn 3:16n, Jn 3:36. **Jn 20:31. Ac 10:43. 13:39. +Ac 16:34. Ro 3:28. *Ro 4:5. Ga 3:22. Ep 2:8. 1 Tim 1:16. **1 Tim 4:10. Titus 3:8. He 6:1. *He 10:39. *1 P 1:21. **1 J 5:9-13. that sent me. ver. Jn 5:23, 38. hath. Eternal life is a present possession. ver. Jn 5:26, 39. +Jn 8:12. Lk 10:42. **1 J 5:13. everlasting. Gr. aionios, +Mt 18:8. Jn 3:15, 16. 6:68. **Ro 6:23. and shall not. **Jn 10:27-30. +*Jn 17:6. Ro 5:1, 2, 9. **Ro 8:1, 16, 17, 28-30, 33, 34. **Ep 4:30. 1 Th 5:9. *2 Th 2:13, 14. 1 P 1:5. *Jude 1:24. into condemnation. ver. Jn 5:29. Jn 3:18. **Ro 8:1. Re 20:11-15. but. Mt 18:8. *Col 1:13. *1 J 3:14. is passed. Gr. metabainō (S#3327g, Mt 8:34). FS144C1, +Ge 21:1. *Ps 37:28. Is 45:17. 51:6. Col 1:13. 1 J 3:14. from death. Lk 15:24. Ro 6:13. *Ep 2:1-3. +*James 5:20. 1 J 3:14. unto life. Ps 133:3. Pr 16:22. Ro 6:4. 2 Cor 5:15. Col 1:13. 2:13. 3:3. 2 Tim 1:1, 10. 1 J 3:14. *1 J 5:12.

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