Paul versus Jesus

A new poster to the “Islam and Christianity Debate Group” posted a long analysis of “The Difference between Jesus Christ’s Concept of Salvation and Paul of Tarsus’s Concept of the Salvation” (which I cite in part):

The Muslim Challenge:

Paul misled the way to salvation by excluding one of the essential elements, that is observance of the Law of Commandments. He advised only the lip service, escaping from the responsibility to keep the commandments. He wronged the concept of righteousness and faith, and misrepresented the judgement of God. To become righteous, and to achieve salvation, faith alone, is not sufficient, obedience to God’s commands is a must, but according to Paul he has a different and weird concept :

a-” For we come to the conclusion that a man is justified by faith without the works of the Law.” (Romans 3:28)

b-” It is the message of faith, which we preach, that if you confess with your lips the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved. For with the heart one believes so that he is made righteous and with the mouth confession is made for salvation.”
(Romans 10:9)

Although Jesus {P.B.u.h.} taught his followers that anyone who attains salvation, must have faith in God, and at the same time must obey the revelations of God. It is contrary to every human intellect, that the salvation can be obtained by faith, leaving aside the practical obedience to God.

However, we read in (Matthew 5:19)
“Whoever, therefore, abolishes the least significant of these commands and so teaches the people , he shall be of least significance in the Kingdom of heaven; but whoever shall observe and teach them shall be prominent in the Kingdom of heaven.”

And in (Matthew 19:17)
“If you wish to enter into life keep the commandments.”


My Answer:

In my careful and considered judgement, your understanding of the connection between Jesus and Paul is mistaken.

First, it is recorded in the Bible that Jesus Himself specially chose the Apostle Paul, as recorded in Acts 9:15,

Act 9:15  But the Lord said unto him, Go thy way: for he is a chosen vessel unto me, to bear my name before the Gentiles, and kings, and the children of Israel:

Second, I believe you may not properly understand the relationship between Law and Grace.

Jesus fulfilled the requirements of the Law. Jesus brought grace as the means of salvation, grace which is freely available to all who truly believe in our Lord Jesus Christ:

John 1:17  For the law was given by Moses, but grace and truth came by Jesus Christ.

John 3:16  For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.

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.

John 14:6  Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.

Third, it is clear from the written record that Paul received his message or doctrine by direct revelation from our Lord Jesus Christ Himself:

Gal 1:11  But I certify you, brethren, that the gospel which was preached of me is not after man.

Gal 1:12  For I neither received it of man, neither was I taught it, but by the revelation of Jesus Christ.

Gal 1:11 My friends, I want you to know that no one made up the message I preach.

Gal 1:12 It wasn’t given or taught to me by some mere human. My message came directly from Jesus Christ when he appeared to me. (CEV)

1Co 14:37  If any man think himself to be a prophet, or spiritual, let him acknowledge that the things that I write unto you are the commandments of the Lord.

Fourth, the divine inspiration of what Paul wrote was acknowledged by Peter, who speaks of Paul’s letters as Scripture:

2Pe 3:15  And account that the longsuffering of our Lord is salvation; even as our beloved brother Paul also according to the wisdom given unto him hath written unto you;

2Pe 3:16  As also in all his epistles, speaking in them of these things; in which are some things hard to be understood, which they that are unlearned and unstable wrest, as they do also the other scriptures, unto their own destruction.


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Daily Bible Nugget #572, Titus 2:13

The Nugget:

Tit 2:13  Looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ; (KJV)

A Muslim Question:

Did Jesus Christ ever worship God?

If Jesus Christ worshipped God before, why do you call him God?

My Answer:

Because the Bible itself calls Jesus God in the original language (Greek New Testament).

Tit 2:13 We are filled with hope, as we wait for the glorious return of our great God and Savior Jesus Christ. (CEV, Contemporary English Version)

Tit 2:13 waiting for the blessed hope and manifestation of the glory of our great God and Saviour Jesus Christ, (Young’s Literal Translation)

Tit 2:13 waiting for our blessed hope, the appearing of the glory of our great God and Savior Jesus Christ, (ESV, English Standard Version)

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Daily Bible Nugget #571, Luke 24:31

The Nugget:

Luk 24:31  And their eyes were opened, and they knew him; and he vanished out of their sight. (KJV)

Luk 24:31 and their eyes were opened, and they recognized him, and he became unseen by them. (Young’s Literal Translation)

My Comment:

Sunday, the 17th of Nisan on the Jewish calendar, the First Day of the week, the Third Day since “these things were done” (Luke 24:21).

Jesus appeared to Mary (Matthew 28:1, 9;  Mark 16:9; Luke 24:10; John 20:11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18)

Jesus appeared to the Two Disciples (Luke 24:13-33)

Jesus appeared to Peter (Luke 24:34; 1 Corinthians 15:5)

Jesus appeared in the Upper Room (John 20:19; Luke 24:36, 37,  38, 39)

All told, it is most clear that Jesus was crucified on Thursday, not Friday, as must be the case if we properly account for what the two disciples spontaneously said on the road to Emmaus as recorded in Luke 24:21.

Since Sunday is stated to be “the third day since these things were done, then:

Saturday must be the second day since these things were done, and:

Friday was the first day since these things were done, so that:

Thursday MUST BE the day that Jesus was crucified, that being among the things that were done that the two disciples on the road to Emmaus were relating to the Stranger that began to accompany them, who turned out to be the Risen Lord Jesus Christ Himself (Luke 24:35).

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Daily Bible Nugget #570, 1 Peter 3:19

The Nugget:

1Pe 3:19  By which also he went and preached unto the spirits in prison;

My Comment:

What happened to Jesus after His body was placed in the tomb? There is a very interesting but largely misunderstood passage in 1 Peter 3:19 which gives us an interesting clue.

Saturday of Passion Week our Lord Jesus Christ–at least His physical body–still remained in the tomb of Joseph of Arimathea.

In terms of the Passion Week chronology, this was the 16th of Nisan, Saturday, the seventh-day Sabbath of the Jews.

And most important to understand and follow, this is “the second day since” “these things were done” (Luke 24:21).

I placed the following notes in the Ultimate Cross Reference Treasury which explain 1 Peter 3:19,

1 Peter 3:19

By which. or, By whom. FS136, +Isa 60:12, By Whom is a reference to the Holy Spirit of 1Pe 3:18 (LNT, fn f). 1Pe 3:16 g. 1Pe 1:11, 12; 1Pe 2:12 g. **1Pe 4:6, Neh 9:30, *2Pe 1:21, Rev 19:10.

he went. Note: Christ, as God, had gone, by his Spirit, inspiring his servant Noah, to denounce the approaching deluge, and preach repentance to incorrigible antediluvians, who perished in their sins, and whose “spirits” were in “the prison” of hell, when the apostle wrote; being confined there till the judgment of the great day. This appears to be the genuine sense of the passage, as it is perfectly agreeable to the whole of the context. Adding to the preceding original Note, this passage does not teach Christ’s alleged “descent into hell,” to preach the gospel to those who had never heard (Eze 16:55), as some mistakenly interpret. In this text only the antediluvians are mentioned as having been preached to: does anyone assert that when Christ allegedly went to hades to preach to the unsaved dead that he selectively preached only to those who had been living in Noah’s day in the time before the flood? Scripture positively forbids the notion that there is any second chance for salvation after death (+*Heb 9:27). Christ upon his death went to paradise, according to his promise to the dying thief (Luk 23:43). James Oliver Buswell, Jr., in Volume Two of his A Systematic Theology of the Christian Religion, p. 319, provides this translation: “…Christ once for all died for sins, the Just One for the unjust ones, in order that He might bring us to God. He was put to death in the flesh, but was made alive by the Spirit; in which [Spirit] He went and preached, in the days of Noah, while the longsuffering of God was waiting, while the ark was being built, to [the persons who are now] spirits in prison, to those who at [that] time were disobedient.” He comments, “It is evident, therefore, that Peter does not teach that Christ, during the time when His body lay in the grave, went to any limbus patrum, but rather Peter is emphasizing the fact that it was the Spirit of Christ in the days of Noah and through Noah who was preaching righteousness to those who rejected God’s grace and are lost.” 1Pe 3:22, +*Psa 16:9, 10, 11, Mat 27:52-53 x, Luk 23:34 x, Act 2:27 x, Joh 20:17, Eph 4:9-10 x, Heb 9:12; Heb 9:27.

and preached. or, heralded. Gr. kērussō (S# G2784, Mat 3:1). A different word from 1Pe 4:6; here it is “heralded”; there “evangelized” (F. W. Grant, Numerical Bible). Jesus did not do any preaching in Hades or hell while he was physically dead awaiting resurrection on the third day. There is no basis to suppose there is any reason He would do so. He preached through Noah in Noah’s day. How explain that Jesus preached in hell only to the antediluvians (those who were living before the Flood in Noah’s day): did Jesus single those out and preach only to them? If so, why? Scripture positively forbids the notion that there is any second chance for salvation after death (Heb 9:27). Christ upon his death went to paradise, according to his promise to the dying thief (**Luke 23:43 note). In a note in Lange on Rev 21:8, E. R. Craven remarks “All that the use of kērussō calls for is the proclamation of a fact or facts. These facts, in the case before us, may have been the completion of the work of the atonement, and the consequent deliverance of those who had accepted of Christ under the types of the old economy (p. 377). %1Pe 4:6, Psa 68:18, *Isa 61:1, Jon 3:2; Jon 3:4, Mar 1:45; Mar 5:20; Mar 7:36, Luk 8:39; Luk 12:3, Act 15:21, Rom 2:21, 2Co 4:5, Gal 5:11, +*Eph 4:8; +*Eph 4:9, *2Pe 2:5, Rev 5:2.

spirits. Gr. pneuma, +Luk 24:37, 1Pe 3:22, Col 2:15, +*Heb 12:23, %Rev 6:9; Rev 20:4.

in prison. Gr. phulakē (S# G5438, Mat 5:25). The wicked of Noah’s time who are, at the time of Peter’s writing, in hadēs (cf. 2Pe 2:4 and note r) [LNT, fn h]. =Gen 39:20, Isa 24:22, 23; Isa 42:7; Isa 49:9; Isa 61:1, Mat 5:25; Mat 14:3; Mat 18:30; Mat 25:36, Mar 6:17; Mar 6:27, Luk 2:8; Luk 8:31; *Luk 12:58; Luk 21:12; Luk 23:19, Joh 3:24, Act 5:19; Act 8:3, 2Co 6:5, Heb 11:36, *2Pe 2:4; *2Pe 2:5, *Jud 1:6, Rev 9:1; **Rev 20:7.

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Daily Bible Nugget #569, Hosea 6:2

The Nugget:

Hos 6:2  After two days will he revive us: in the third day he will raise us up, and we shall live in his sight.

My Comment:

Mr. Roy M. Allen, author of the book Three Days in the Grave, makes reference to Hosea 6:2 in his chronological chart for the Passion Week. He associates the “two days” with the time Christ’s body was in the grave before His resurrection on the third day. The point is that Christ died while on the cross some hours before He was buried in the tomb. The time He experienced physical death such that His soul was “in the heart of the earth” was a longer time than His physical body remained in the grave, for obviously He experienced death before He was placed in the grave. This circumstance resolves the issue brought up by reference to what Jesus said in Matthew 12:40. Jesus said He would give no special sign to the wicked religious leaders of that day except the sign of the prophet Jonah:

Mat 12:40  For as Jonas was three days and three nights in the whale’s belly; so shall the Son of man be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth.

Notice the expression, “in the heart of the earth.” This expression is not used merely of  the grave, but of the place where the soul or spirit goes upon death. Jesus spoke, in Luke 16:22, of a place called “Abraham’s bosom.” This is the place where souls of the righteous or saved rested in peace until the time of Christ’s resurrection, a place that might be called the good part of hades, perhaps also to be identified with paradise. When Jesus ascended to heaven, Scripture tells us (Ephesians 4:8, 9), He brought all the saved individuals with Him to heaven.

Jesus, when He was “buried,” was not placed in a hole in the ground, but in a burial chamber above ground. Mr. Roy Allan points out that the reference in Matthew 12:40 must refer to the disposition of Christ’s spirit, not the length of time His body remained in the grave or tomb.

On Friday, the 15th of Nisan, was the Passover Sabbath. It was also the Preparation of the Sabbath that followed the next day as the regular seventh day Sabbath. Notice, therefore, that at this time there were two Sabbaths in a row, the second Sabbath following immediately after the first. The first Sabbath, which occurred on the 14th of Nisan (the Passover), on Thursday, the fifth day of the week, is referred to in the Bible as “an high sabbath” or “high day” (John 19:31),

John 19:31  The Jews therefore, because it was the preparation, that the bodies should not remain upon the cross on the sabbath day, (for that sabbath day was an high day,) besought Pilate that their legs might be broken, and that they might be taken away.

This Friday is the Second Day.

This Friday of the Passion Week is also “The First Day Since” (Luke 24:21).

These things being so, this proves that Christ was crucified on Thursday, not Friday, as traditionally held.

In Luke 24:21, we read that the two disciples (walking home from Jerusalem on the First Day of the week) on the road to Emmaus said, “and beside all this, today is the third day since these things were done.” This thing that was done, therefore, must have happened on Thursday, so that Friday would be the first day since, Saturday would be the second day since, and Sunday would be the third day since Christ was crucified on the Cross.

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Daily Bible Nugget #568, Psalm 22:1

The Nugget:

Psalm 22:1 My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me? why art thou so far from helping me, and from the words of my roaring? (KJV)

Psa 22:1 (A psalm by David for the music leader. To the tune “A Deer at Dawn.” ) My God, my God, why have you deserted me? Why are you so far away? Won’t you listen to my groans and come to my rescue? (CEV)

My Comment:

The New Testament records seven sayings of our Lord Jesus Christ on the cross. One of those sayings is a partial quotation taken from Psalm 22:1.

Matthew 27:46  And about the ninth hour Jesus cried with a loud voice, saying, Eli, Eli, lama sabachthani? that is to say, My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?

Mark 15:34  And at the ninth hour Jesus cried with a loud voice, saying, Eloi, Eloi, lama sabachthani? which is, being interpreted, My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?

This saying was the basis of a question presented on the Logos forum earlier this week. I decided not to answer the question on that forum since theological discussion is frowned upon there.

But I have answers to the posed question and will give them here.

The question revolves around the issue of whether or not God deserted Jesus while Jesus was on the cross.

The Biblical answer is that it is certain that God did not desert Jesus.

First of all, with regard to Psalm 22:1, William Kay on the word forsaken states that “The whole tenor of the Psalm shows that this is not the cry of despair, but of the most perfect faith.” To this observation I have found that a number of different New Testament texts agree:

Heb 12:2  Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God.

I have provided a specific answer to the question in The Ultimate Cross Reference Treasury at Matthew 27:46,

Matthew 27:46

ninth hour. Our 3 p.m. +Mat 27:45, =Exo 12:6, Deut 16:1, Dan 9:21, Act 10:3.

Jesus. Mar 15:34, Luk 23:46, Joh 19:28, 29, 30, *Heb 5:7.

cried. Note the “seven words” from the cross: (1) Luk 23:34; (2) Luk 23:43; (3) Joh 19:26, 27; (4) Mat 27:46; (5) Joh 19:28; (6) Joh 19:30; (7) Luk 23:46 (CB). T1185, Luk 23:33, 34; Luk 23:42; Luk 23:46.

with a loud voice. Luk 19:40.

Eli. i.e. my God, *S# G2241, only here. >Psa 22:1; Psa 71:11, Isa 53:10, Lam 1:12.
Eli. FS84, +Gen 22:11.

sabachthani. i.e. hast thou forsaken me? *S# G4518. Mat 27:46, Mar 15:34.

My. FS59, +Gen 28:16, Psa 31:14; Psa 42:6, Dan 6:22.

why hast. 2Co 13:4.

forsaken. or, leave Me in this circumstance (LNT). Gr. egkataleipō (S# G1459, 2Co_4:9). Did You leave in translates egkatelipes; Moulton says on this word, “Egkataleipō will serve as a type of some others: kataleipō abandon (perfective) is supplemented with en, pointing to the plight in which the victim is left” (James Hope Moulton, A Grammar of New Testament Greek, Vol. 2, p. 305, § 118, (a)). [The Greek has been transliterated.] The term is a compound word made up of en (in), kata (down, downwards), and leipō (to leave). So, in keeping with its definitive characteristics, the word means to leave in some circumstance. Note that Moulton’s term, perfective, means that the preposition en, expresses completion to the rest of the word in this context. Christ was left, but in what sense? En, in, the redemptive role: suffering, bloodshed, death! God cannot leave, forsake, or run out on God the Son. God IS one, as in a state of being, and there cannot be departure whatsoever among the Trinity, of the One from the Other. God’s effort was not abandonment, but redemption! We further note that the same word, egkatelipen, is used of Demas forsaking Paul (2Ti 4:10). Thus Paul was left, but in what sense? He was left in the plight of desertion. The purpose of the leaving declares the difference in meaning: Demas’ purpose was another love, requiring a separation; God’s purpose was redemption, requiring togetherness and oneness (LNT, fn i). $>Psa 22:1; Psa 69:17; Psa 88:14, Lam 3:8, **Hab 1:13, 2Co 5:21, Heb 13:5 g.


I believe 2 Corinthians 5:19 requires us to understand that God did not abandon Jesus on the Cross, but was most closely associated with Jesus in this work of Redemption and Reconciliation:

2Co 5:19  To wit, that God was in Christ, reconciling the world unto himself, not imputing their trespasses unto them; and hath committed unto us the word of reconciliation. (KJV)

2Co 5:19 That is, that God was in Christ making peace between the world and himself, not putting their sins to their account, and having given to us the preaching of this news of peace. (BBE, Bible in Basic English)

These things took place on Thursday of Passion Week.

Thursday of Passion Week began (by our mode of  reckoning time) with the arrest of Jesus. This took place on the fifth day of the week, the 14th day of Nisan, the Preparation Day for the Feast of the Passover, the day the lamb was slain in the ninth hour, our 3 pm, the precise hour that Jesus died on the Cross.

Jesus Dies. Marking The First Day (see Luke 24:21)

Jesus descends to “the heart of the earth.”


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Daily Bible Nugget #567, Luke 22:13

The Nugget:

Luke 22:13  And they went, and found as he had said unto them: and they made ready the passover.

My Comment:

A number of times in the Gospel records it happened that the disciples “found as he had said unto them.” Taken together, I believe these passages demonstrate that Jesus was omniscient. To me, the most remarkable instance is found at Matthew 17:27,

Mat 17:27  Notwithstanding, lest we should offend them, go thou to the sea, and cast an hook, and take up the fish that first cometh up; and when thou hast opened his mouth, thou shalt find a piece of money: that take, and give unto them for me and thee.

In context, Peter had been challenged by the Temple tax collectors, who asked him, “Doth not your master pay tribute?” When Peter arrived back at the house where Jesus was, Jesus anticipated Peter before Peter had a chance to say a word, for Jesus knew about what the collectors of the tribute money had asked Peter.

Jesus told Peter to go to the sea, cast in his hook, and take up the first fish, and take the needed tax money out of the mouth of the fish–enough  to pay the tax for both Peter and Jesus. How did Jesus know that poor fish had the proper size coin in its mouth and would bite on the hook Peter cast into the water? This surely is a mark of omniscience on the part of Jesus.

On Wednesday of Passion Week, Jesus similarly directed Peter and John about how to find where they should prepare for the Passover Meal:

Luk 22:7  Then came the day of unleavened bread, when the passover must be killed.
Luk 22:8  And he sent Peter and John, saying, Go and prepare us the passover, that we may eat.
Luk 22:9  And they said unto him, Where wilt thou that we prepare?
Luk 22:10  And he said unto them, Behold, when ye are entered into the city, there shall a man meet you, bearing a pitcher of water; follow him into the house where he entereth in.
Luk 22:11  And ye shall say unto the goodman of the house, The Master saith unto thee, Where is the guestchamber, where I shall eat the passover with my disciples?
Luk 22:12  And he shall shew you a large upper room furnished: there make ready.
Luk 22:13  And they went, and found as he had said unto them: and they made ready the passover.

The Companion Bible comments on the words “a man meet you, bearing a pitcher of water,” that this was “An unusual sight. They might have met many men carrying wine-skins, and women carrying pitchers, but not a man carrying a pitcher.”

There are some who earnestly believe and teach that Jesus was crucified on Wednesday, not Friday, as traditionally believed. They argue that Matthew 12:40 requires 72 hours or three full days as the time the body of Jesus must remain in the tomb. If Christ were to have died on Friday, and have been resurrected on Sunday morning, that leaves too little time.

Some who teach this view insist that the Triumphal Entry did not take place on Sunday (what we call Palm Sunday) but on Saturday. It seems unlikely that Jesus and His followers would parade into Jerusalem on the Sabbath! Furthermore, since Jesus cleansed the Temple on the same day as His Triumphal Entry, this could hardly have taken place on the Sabbath, for the money-changers would not be doing business in the Temple on the Sabbath!

Some who teach a Wednesday Crucifixion lay great stress upon the event described in Matthew 28:1, teaching that the time Mary Magdalene and the other Mary came to visit the tomb of Jesus was in the evening. But the meaning of the underlying Greek text speaks of them venturing forth just before dawn, not at dusk, so this visit corresponds with the visit of the women mentioned in the other Gospels.

Rather, on Wednesday evening, Jesus and the disciples go to Jerusalem where the “Last Supper” was eaten.

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Daily Bible Nugget #566, Mark 11:22

The Nugget:

Mar 11:22  And Jesus answering saith unto them, Have faith in God.

My Comment:

Tuesday, Day three of the Passion Week, the 12th day of Nisan on the Jewish calendar, is marked by the return from Bethany to Jerusalem. On the way, the disciples called attention to the fig tree Jesus had cursed the day before when “they saw the fig tree dried up from the roots” (Mark 11:20).

On this day Jesus gave His famed Olivet Discourse, found recorded in Matthew 24 and 25, spoken before and perhaps during the return to Bethany from Jerusalem. This discourse is the longest and most detailed of the prophetic discourses that Jesus gave during His earthly ministry. The discourses are largely misunderstood by many, if not most, interpreters today. For one thing, there is no mention of the Rapture of the Church or living believers in this discourse. For another thing, the references are explicitly Jewish. Many fail to understand what Girdlestone in his book, The Grammar of Prophecy, discusses as the near and the far aspect of prophecy often evident in the same passage. Thus, Preterists mistakenly suppose the entire prophecy was fulfilled by A.D. 70 at the destruction of the Temple. Most interpreters fail to note the setting, whether on the Temple grounds or on the Mount of Olives in the parallel accounts in Matthew and Luke. These things all make a huge difference on how these prophecies are to be interpreted. If we fail to notice these and many other things carefully, we are sure to be mistaken in our understanding of these passages.

The Olivet Discourse is given most fully in Matthew and Luke. The account in Luke takes place before the account in Matthew. Luke presents the prophecy Christ gave that would be largely fulfilled in relatively near-term, and includes 25 or more remarkably specific predictions regarding the Fall of Jerusalem. I have given the precise details of these predictions in an article elsewhere on this site.

Jesus closes His discourse this day with a most important Bible promise and severe warning about our two possible eternal destinies:  heaven or hell.

Mat 25:46  And these shall go away into everlasting punishment: but the righteous into life eternal.

I have discussed Matthew 25:46 on this site in detail. Below, I share a portion of my notes on this verse from The Ultimate Cross Reference Treasury: 

everlasting. Gr. aionios, +Mat 18:8. Some go to great length to argue that the punishment threatened here by our Lord Jesus Christ is not truly everlasting or never-ending. Those who argue this way do so in an effort to bolster their mistaken notion of justice and their mistaken view of the character of God (+**Gen 18:25 note). Some quibble over the meaning of “eternal,” arguing from the fact that the word in Scripture is sometimes used in a finite sense (+Psa 24:9 note), and sometimes used in an infinite sense (John 6:54 note). From this fact they justify asserting a limited sense to the duration of everlasting punishment. The answer to this objection is simple. Jesus spoke of two ages, this age, and the age to come. In the King James Version these terms are translated “this world” and “the world to come” in Mat 12:32. When the word “eternal” is applied to things restricted to this age it is used in a finite or limited sense. When “eternal” has reference to things in “the age to come,” it is used in an infinite sense. Clearly God is eternal and will continue to exist in the age to come. Just as eternal life and eternal punishment pertain to and exist in the age to come, so “eternal” in reference to them is used in the infinite, never-ending sense. +*Mat 18:8. Psa 52:5; Psa 92:7, **Isa 33:14; Isa 38:18, +*Dan 12:2, *Mar 3:29, 2Th 1:9, Heb 6:2, *Rev 14:11.

Note the very significant time marker involving the chronology of Passion Week given by Matthew immediately after the close of  his record of the Olivet Discourse in Matthew 26:2,

Mat 26:2  Ye know that after two days is the feast of the passover, and the Son of man is betrayed to be crucified.

This was spoken on Tuesday, the third day of Passion Week, the twelfth day of Nisan on the Jewish calendar. Compare this with the notice of time stated by John in John 12:1, “six days before the passover.”

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Daily Bible Nugget #565, Mark 11:17

The Nugget:

Mar 11:17  And he taught, saying unto them, Is it not written, My house shall be called of all nations the house of prayer? but ye have made it a den of thieves.

My Comment:

I began this overview of the Passion Week starting at Palm Sunday, as represented in John’s narrative in the Gospel of John, John 12:13.

Prior to this event, on Friday, Jesus arrived at Bethany, John 12:1. On this day, Jesus was anointed by Mary with expensive ointment, John 12:3.

On Saturday, a curious crowd came, “not for Jesus’ sake only, but that they might see Lazarus also, whom he had raised from the dead” (John 12:9).

At this point we see again the darkness of the hearts of the chief priests, for they “consulted that they might put Lazarus also to death” (John 12:10). The chief priests were very upset that on account of this great miracle of the physical resurrection of Lazarus by Jesus after Lazarus had been dead four days many Jews followed Jesus. They could not deny the miracle. But many of the Jews “went away and believed on Jesus” (John 12:11).

Lazarus is not mentioned by name in the other three Gospels, nor is any reference to this miracle given. This silence is an undesigned coincidence that demonstrates the truth of this account. The first three Gospels were written earlier, presumably while Lazarus was still alive, when mention of him by name might attract harmful attention to him and his family. John’s Gospel was written later, when such mention would not pose this problem. This silence is sometimes called “intentional obscurity,” a very  important feature which involves the proper understanding of a number of passages in the New Testament.

Sunday is the day when Christ’s Triumphal Entry to Jerusalem took place on the tenth day of the Jewish month of Nisan. This is the date in the Passover/Exodus history when the lamb was to be set aside (Exodus 12:3). This event in Exodus is sometimes called a “type,” an event which prefigures something about the future Messiah, and in this case is about equivalent to a prophecy that helps determine the chronology of the Passion Week and specifies on what day Jesus was crucified.

We read of Christ’s return to Bethany at the close of what we call Palm Sunday in Mark 11:11.

Monday, the following day, Jesus returned to Jerusalem. On the way, Jesus cursed the fig tree (Mark 11:12, 13. 14). On this day the Temple was cleansed (Mark 11:15). Once again the scribes and chief priests sought how they might destroy Jesus, “for they feared him, because all the people were astonished at his doctrine” (Mark 11:18). Jesus again returned to Bethany (Mark 11:19).

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Daily Bible Nugget #564, Luke 19:40

The Nugget:

Luke 19:40  And he answered and said unto them, I tell you that, if these should hold their peace, the stones would immediately cry out.

My Comment:

Jesus said these words (“I tell you that, if these should hold their peace, the stones would immediately cry out”) in answer to the objections of some of the Pharisees, who were upset that on what we call “Palm Sunday” the crowd was proclaiming, “Blessed be the King that cometh in the name of the Lord: peace in heaven, and glory in the highest” (Luke 19:38), as Jesus entered Jerusalem.

In some quarters, the chronology of the Passion Week is much disputed. It is very highly likely that the chronology we traditionally celebrate today is actually mistaken. This is not a major issue, but the traditional account does not agree with the Bible when the Bible is carefully studied. This creates unnecessary so-called contradictions in the Bible account, which I have seen exploited by those of other faiths and world religions who do not accept the record of the New Testament as being true history.

Just last night I heard a brief fragment of the popular late night Coast to Coast radio program. It featured an interview with Bart Ehrman about his new book regarding heaven and hell. A caller posed a question about why should anyone bother to study the Bible, or even the New Testament, because it is filled with contradictions. Mr. Ehrman gave an academically respectable answer as far as I heard. But his approach is not the approach I would take. But my point is that unbelievers and atheists latch on to any objection they can find to attack the Bible in support of their unbelief.

A great portion of the New Testament Gospel accounts are given to the events of Passion Week. These records are filled with specific details. An author, Roy M. Allen, wrote a book on the Passion Week chronology, a book titled Three Days in the Grave, published in January of 1942 by Loizeaux Brothers, Bible Truth Depot, New York City. I have found this book to be the best work on this subject, and I plan, Lord willing, to present the events of this week in their proper chronological connection. I am following the “Chronological Chart of the events of the passion week, in terms of the Jewish Day of the Week, the Month Nisan  and our Modern Week Days” (page 160).

The account begins with the “Arrival at Bethany” of John 12:1.

Joh 12:1  Then Jesus six days before the passover came to Bethany, where Lazarus was which had been dead, whom he raised from the dead (see John 11:43, 44).

This took place on the 8th day of the Jewish month of Nisan, the 6th day of the week, our Friday.

On this day there was a supper and the anointing of Jesus, as recorded in John 12:2-8.

Joh 12:2  There they made him a supper; and Martha served: but Lazarus was one of them that sat at the table with him.
Joh 12:3  Then took Mary a pound of ointment of spikenard, very costly, and anointed the feet of Jesus, and wiped his feet with her hair: and the house was filled with the odour of the ointment.
Joh 12:4  Then saith one of his disciples, Judas Iscariot, Simon’s son, which should betray him,
Joh 12:5  Why was not this ointment sold for three hundred pence, and given to the poor?
Joh 12:6  This he said, not that he cared for the poor; but because he was a thief, and had the bag, and bare what was put therein.
Joh 12:7  Then said Jesus, Let her alone: against the day of my burying hath she kept this.
Joh 12:8  For the poor always ye have with you; but me ye have not always.

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