Bible Interpretation Rule 3 another example

I think I learn more when I encounter a viewpoint I have not heard before. I hope you do too. This post is more controversial, but I think I can marshal enough evidence to both make and prove my point.

Rule 3 of Bible Interpretation has to do with understanding and applying the impact figures of speech have on understanding what the Bible means and emphasizes.

Here is what I consider to be a fascinating application of heeding figures of speech to get the right meaning of what the Bible says:

Mat 24:35  Heaven and earth shall pass away, but my words shall not pass away.

For those who know their Bible well, this statement by our Lord Jesus Christ contradicts what is clearly taught elsewhere in the Bible, unless you understand the figure of speech here. The Bible elsewhere declares that “the earth abideth forever” (Ecclesiastes 1:4).

Now some who are well acquainted with the Bible might object to using a verse from Ecclesiastes to prove a Bible doctrine. In answer to that objection, I would simply state that comparing the cross references given at Ecclesiastes 1:4 will demolish that objection, for the same truth is declared elsewhere in the Bible.

Ecc 1:4  One generation passeth away, and another generation cometh: but the earth abideth for ever.

Some cross-references given at Ecclesiastes 1:4,

Psalms 78:69
69  And he built his sanctuary like high palaces, like the earth which he hath established for ever.
King James Version

Psalms 104:5
5  Who laid the foundations of the earth, that it should not be removed for ever.
King James Version

Psalms 72:5
5  They shall fear thee as long as the sun and moon endure, throughout all generations.
King James Version

Psalms 148:6
6  He hath also stablished them for ever and ever: he hath made a decree which shall not pass.
King James Version

Isaiah 9:6
6  For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace.
King James Version

Isaiah 9:7
7  Of the increase of his government and peace there shall be no end, upon the throne of David, and upon his kingdom, to order it, and to establish it with judgment and with justice from henceforth even for ever. The zeal of the LORD of hosts will perform this.
King James Version

1 Chronicles 16:30
30  Fear before him, all the earth: the world also shall be stable, that it be not moved.
King James Version

These seven passages out of many more I could cite from the cross references given in The Ultimate Cross Reference Treasury or The New Treasury of Scripture Knowledge  or Nelson’s Cross Reference Guide to the Bible should demonstrate that the Bible affirms that the earth shall abide forever.

So much for the current “climate change” hysteria being foisted on school children and the general public that will cause this earth to be uninhabitable within eleven years, which absurd claim I just heard on the radio right before beginning this post today. Climate change is a bogey man to scare school children and uninformed adults who are not well taught in either actual science or the Bible.

Matthew 24:35 employs the figure of speech called Meiosis, also known as Litotes involving a Balanced Sentence where the first statement is contrary to fact or reality, and is used in a contrast to most strongly emphasize what is affirmed in the last statement.

In this form of statement the last statement is frequently introduced by the word but, which helps  to mark this figure (see Isaiah 51:6; Isaiah 54:10; Luke 11:4).

Scholars can wrangle with my assertion all they please (and some time ago I found where they did just that when I did a Google search!). Their contrary opinion only demonstrates they have not studied the Scriptures carefully enough. I have. But they are welcome to come to this site and leave a comment below for further discussion. I am always willing to change my mind if I am presented enough clear evidence that would prove me wrong. Let’s see if they can make that claim.

Jesus does not, and absolutely could not, affirm that heaven and earth will pass away. Surely Jesus knew that He is to reign forever upon this earth on the Throne of David (Luke 1:32, 33). That prophecy alone would require that the earth must “abide forever” in order for the eternal reign of Christ upon this earth to take place (Revelation 11:15).

The expressions used in Matthew 24:35 are frequently reflected elsewhere in Scripture (as seen in the seven Parallel Passages I cited above).

Surely our Lord Jesus Christ and His Jewish hearers, intimately acquainted with the Hebrew Scriptures, were aware of the context, for example, of Psalm 102:26 as seen in Psalm 102:28, something apparently missed by some modern scholars, such as those I saw mentioned on Facebook earlier today who are called “full preterists.” “Full preterists” believe that all the prophecies in the New Testament were fulfilled before or by 70 AD. They do not believe in a literal millennium or thousand year reign of Christ here on this earth. They do not believe that we are to inherit this earth (Matthew 5:5), not the third heaven, for our ultimate eternal abode.

Psa 102:25  Of old hast thou laid the foundation of the earth: and the heavens are the work of thy hands.

Psalms 102:26
26  They shall perish, but thou shalt endure: yea, all of them shall wax old like a garment; as a vesture shalt thou change them, and they shall be changed:
King James Version

Psalms 102:28
28  The children of thy servants shall continue, and their seed shall be established before thee.
King James Version

God’s Covenant Promises are absolutely guaranteed as being more sure than the promise that the earth abides forever and shall never perish, so sure are the “sure mercies of David,” mercies above and greater than the heavens (Psalm 108:4).

Psalms 108:4
4  For thy mercy is great above the heavens: and thy truth reacheth unto the clouds.
King James Version

Note carefully in the context of Psalm 102:26 the statement of Psalm 102:28 that the generations “of thy servants shall continue” (see also Psalm 72:5) and be “established before thee”–surely the Bible writers who cite or allude to Psalm 102:26 were most aware of its context and the assurance of Psalm 102:28, so when Jesus states “Heaven and earth shall pass away, but my words shall not pass away,” His words are the guaranteed words of the Abrahamic and Davidic Covenants, which are more sure than the heavens and will certainly come to pass.

God Himself appeals to the promised eternal constancy of the universe (Jeremiah 31:35, 36, 37) to affirm the absolute certainty of the “Sure mercies of David” (Isaiah 55:3).

Isaiah 55:3
3  Incline your ear, and come unto me: hear, and your soul shall live; and I will make an everlasting covenant with you, even the sure mercies of David.
King James Version

To suggest the heavens or the earth shall literally pass away would violate the provisions of the Abrahamic Covenant (See Genesis 12:2 note in The Ultimate Cross Reference Treasury) and the Davidic Covenant (2 Samuel 7:10 note), which would contradict the very character of God Himself (Malachi 3:6), which is utterly impossible (Genesis 18:25).

If our Lord Jesus Christ is to rule eternally here upon this earth in Jerusalem on the throne of David forever over the whole earth (Isaiah 24:23; Daniel 7:13, 14; Zechariah 14:9; Matthew 5:5;  Luke 1:32, 33;  Revelation 11:15), then the earth as we know it will stand forever (1 Chronicles 16:30; Psalm 148:5, 6).

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