Open Forum for 2011-03-20
- | Chris McCann
- Audio: Length: 37:25 Size: 6.4 MB
Question Summary with Starting Times in Audio File
- 00:00 From the EBF website: So what happens when you wake up on the 22nd and the 23rd?
- 04:00 From Franklin, NC from someone who visited the EBF website: . I have some verses for you, such as Matthew 24:36, Revelation 22:18-19, and there are more. If you honor the Bible, why have you blatantly cast these verses aside?
- 18:20 I just wanted to mention that in Luke 21:34, the word for “unawares” is translated as “sudden” as in “sudden destruction” that is spoken of in 1 Thessalonians 5.
- 29:00 Can you give all of the verses that you know pertaining to Judgment Day coming in a rolling fashion from “nation to nation”?
- 34:43 Does Lamentations 4:10-15 apply to this?
Question #1 came from the EBF website: So what happens when you wake up on the 22nd and the 23rd?
Chris: This same question has been stated in many ways. Many people want to know what we are going to do on the 22nd. What they are asking is, “What are we going to do if nothing happens? If this day passes without event, then what?” They do not realize that there is no possibility of this. There is no possibility at all.
Someone was saying to me, “You know, you are doing a risky thing in setting a date,” and I just thought about this and said back to them, “No; there is no risk in doing this. If this information was coming from me or if this was coming from you or anyone else, then this would be a big risk. More than likely, we would have the wrong date, and this has been the case throughout history; but since God knows the end from the beginning and since He puts this information in the Bible and is now opening up the Bible to reveal this to His people, where is the risk? Is it risky to think that Christ is the Saviour? Is it risky to think that God is one but three? Is it risky to know that we are saved by the faith of Christ? You see, there is no risk when the Bible clearly teaches something. There is no risk at all.”
So many people have these kinds of questions for the child of God, “What are you going to do when May 22nd comes?” But what are they going to do when May 21st comes as God has declared? What are they going to do on that day? Is this not the real question? Is this not the most important thing? When the ground under their feet starts to shake and when it starts to open up all across the world as the earthquake comes to each land and God begins to raise the dead and the living are raptured while they are left behind, what are they going to do?
I will tell you one thing that they are going to do. They are going to regret that they spent so many days leading up to that day wondering about the 22nd. They are really going to regret that they knew that the 22nd of May would come, because it did come for them. It did, because they will still be here; but God’s people will not be here. They will be in Heaven for those five months. Then they will be eternally with God forevermore, while the unsaved will be left here. They will be here and they will be in big trouble.
It will be at that point that the individual who has been laughing at us all along and saying that they are really going to be laughing at us on the 22nd will realize that they had wasted all of this time. They wasted their opportunity. They just wasted the possibility of salvation. They neglected “so great salvation.” They will then be left here on this earth and that will be it for them. That will be it.
Question #2 is from Franklin, NC from someone who visited the website: I have some verses for you, such as Matthew 24:36, Revelation 22:18-19, and there are more. If you honor the Bible, why have you blatantly cast these verses aside?
Chris: We know that Matthew 24:36 says “of that day and hour knoweth no man.” Revelation 22:18-19 has to do with adding or subtracting from the Word of God and being subject to “the plagues that are written in this book.”
What is the answer to this person’s question? Are we ignoring even one verse? No. Are many people ignoring the rest of the Bible and just landing on one or two or three verses? Yes, definitely; most definitely they are. They are ignoring everything that God has said elsewhere. They are ignoring the Biblical pattern of history that we see with Noah and with Lot and with Jonah. They are ignoring that all throughout the Bible God forewarned before He did something. He actually says in Amos 3:7:
Surely the Lord JEHOVAH will do nothing, but he revealeth his secret unto his servants the prophets.
I heard this analogy that I think originated with Mr. Camping. Someone else told this to me and I really think that this is a good analogy. The Bible is like a crime scene that really needs to be investigated, but people go to the Bible and just flip through it. They are being led to do things this way by their pastor. The pastor tells them to look at Matthew 24:36, which says:
But of that day and hour knoweth no man, no, not the angels of heaven, but my Father only.
They close the Bible. Their pastor told them to read this one verse and they did this. They read it. From there, they conclude that this one verse proves that we cannot know the day or hour, that we cannot know that Judgment Day will be May 21st; but the Bible is a rather thick Book. How many verses did they look at?
The analogy we have is one of a crime scene. Since murder is so common in our day, let us say that there has been a murder. The detective comes to the scene. It is a messy crime scene. There is evidence everywhere, but he walks over and picks up just one piece of evidence and then claims that he has solved the case.
Maybe this works with Columbo on television, but this is not the way that this works in real life. Since he did not look at everything else, he is more than likely going to arrest an innocent man. This is because he has done lousy detective work. He needed to look at the whole scene. He needed to look at the body, how the intruder came into the house, and all of the stuff that was overthrown in the room. All of these things need to be checked out thoroughly or they will not come to a correct verdict or conclusion when they do finally arrest someone.
Many people examine the Bible in this way in our day; and, actually, is the church not the ones who are teaching this kind of methodology? They simply go to the Bible and pick and choose a couple of verses; but when someone picks and chooses just a couple of verses, they can make the Bible say whatever they want.
In 1 Timothy 4:10, it says:
For therefore we both labour and suffer reproach, because we trust in the living God, who is the Saviour of all men, specially of those that believe.
Okay. Now we have gone to the Bible and we can prove that Christ is the Saviour of all men. This is the conclusion that we can come to when we go to this verse and then find a couple of supporting verses. He evidently saves everybody. Right?
This is what some churches teach, because this is exactly what they do. They all follow the same method of Bible study in regard to salvation that they are following with the whole idea of no man knows the timing of the end.
The problem is that in coming to this conclusion, we would be absolutely wrong. Christ did not die for everyone. He is not the Saviour of every human being. He is the Saviour of His elect.
To understand this, we need to go elsewhere in the Bible. We need to turn to other verses and look at all of the evidence. It is then we can say that we know that this is what God is saying. He is the Saviour of “all” men when “all” represents His elect people, but He is not the Saviour of every human being. This is an error and this is a false gospel that the churches declare, because they do not know how to come to truth.
Let us go back to Isaiah 28. We looked at this a little bit last week. In Isaiah 28:9, it says:
Whom shall he teach knowledge? and whom shall he make to understand doctrine? them that are weaned from the milk, and drawn from the breasts.
At this time, God is taking us off “milk” and giving us the “strong meat” of all of the truths that were sealed up and hidden; and so this really does have a lot to do with our day.
God is basically saying that this is how He teaches and that this is how we can understand doctrine, which is the teaching of the Bible. Then He gives us a methodology in the next verse, Isaiah 28:10:
For precept must be upon precept, precept upon precept; line upon line, line upon line; here a little, and there a little:
What is another way of saying this? What is a quicker way of saying this same thing? We are to compare Scripture with Scripture or as the Bible puts it: “comparing spiritual things with spiritual.” 1 Corinthians 2 says that if we do this, “the Holy Ghost teacheth.”
If we do not do this, who is teaching? It is not the Holy Ghost. It is not God who is teaching then.
So here God is saying that this is the way that He will teach us knowledge, that this is the way that we will understand doctrine. It is when we follow His prescription. It is when we follow His method: “here a little, and there a little.”
Then He goes on to say in Isaiah 28:11-13:
For with stammering lips and another tongue will he speak to this people. To whom he said, This is the rest wherewith ye may cause the weary to rest; and this is the refreshing: yet they would not hear. But the word of JEHOVAH was unto them precept upon precept, precept upon precept; line upon line, line upon line; here a little, and there a little…
This must be very important because God said this twice. It continues:
…that they might go, and fall backward, and be broken, and snared, and taken.
In other words, God wrote the Bible this way and it has to be understood as we compare Scripture with Scripture. If we do not follow this way, guess what? We are going to “fall backward,” “be broken,” “snared,” and “taken,” because we are not coming to the Bible in the way that God says that we have to come to the Bible.
In relation to being snared and taken, there is a passage in Isaiah 8 that relates to this. We read in Isaiah 8:14-15:
And he shall be for a sanctuary; but for a stone of stumbling and for a rock of offence to both the houses of Israel, for a gin and for a snare to the inhabitants of Jerusalem. And many among them shall stumble, and fall, and be broken, and be snared, and be taken.
Then it says in the next verse, Isaiah 8:16:
Bind up the testimony, seal the law among my disciples.
This sounds like what we read elsewhere: “seal the book [the Word], even to the time of the end.” This is because it is God’s plan to lay a snare at this time.
Keep in mind that Isaiah 28:7 speaks of drunkenness, which relates to spiritually drinking other kinds of gospels and then being so deceived by them that it is like you are in a stupor, like you are so drunk that you stagger down the steps and do not even feel a thorn if it goes into your hand. You think that all is well between you and God because you drank the “strong drink” of another gospel. Spiritually, you are drunk. Then go to Luke 21, which is a parallel chapter to Matthew 24, where God says in Luke 21:34-35:
And take heed to yourselves, lest at any time your hearts be overcharged with surfeiting, and drunkenness, and cares of this life, and so that day come upon you unawares. For as a snare shall it come on all them that dwell on the face of the whole earth.
What is the snare? Their snare is Isaiah 28:10:
For precept must be upon precept, precept upon precept; line upon line, line upon line; here a little, and there a little:
Because the churches do not have the right way of studying the Bible since they do not know how to do this, they come up with a fancy-sounding hermeneutic. They say that we have to take the plain and literal meaning of the Bible and then try to determine what it meant to the people of that day. Then they claim that things are taken out of context when we compare Scripture with Scripture. They say all of these kinds of things, but this limits them. They say, “You cannot jump all around!”
Have you ever had somebody say this to you when you are sharing information from the Bible? They say, “Hold it! Hold it! What are you doing jumping over there? I want to stick with this verse here in this passage.”
Well, if they are limiting themselves in this way, what chance do they have for coming to truth? They do not have a very big chance. We have to go “here a little, and there a little.” This is the only way.
Since the churches do not have this methodology and actually mock this way of studying the Bible, of course they are going to be blinded and of course they are not going to understand the end of the church age. They do not understand these things because they cannot use the Bible in a right way.
We actually read in Romans 11:9:
And David saith, Let their table be made a snare, and a trap, and a stumblingblock, and a recompense unto them:
This is exactly what God is saying. What is their “table”? We read in Psalm 23, “Thou preparest a table before me in the presence of mine enemies.” In the Old Testament, the showbread would be set upon a table. This is also where we eat. We eat on a table.
In Isaiah 28, after speaking of drunkenness, it says in Isaiah 28:8:
For all tables are full of vomit and filthiness, so that there is no place clean.
This is picturing their gospel. The true Gospel should be laid out as a wonderful banquet, the Word of God, the Bread of Life, the water of the Gospel, and yet the tables are unclean because of drunkenness. What physically follows after one becomes extremely drunk? They vomit. It all comes up.
So God is indicating that their table is made a snare. This is a trap that God has set for all of the inhabitants of the earth.
Question #3 is from the fellowship: I just wanted to mention that in Luke 21:34, the word for “unawares” is translated as “sudden” as in “sudden destruction” that is spoken of in 1 Thessalonians 5. It says again in Luke 21:34:
And take heed to yourselves, lest at any time your hearts be overcharged with surfeiting, and drunkenness, and cares of this life, and so that day come upon you unawares.
Chris: If we go to 1 Thessalonians 5:2-3, it says:
For yourselves know perfectly that the day of the Lord so cometh as a thief in the night. For when they shall say, Peace and safety; then sudden destruction cometh upon them, as travail upon a woman with child; and they shall not escape.
So it comes “unawares.” It is “sudden destruction.” No matter how this is going to hit them on that day - wherever they are going to be, whatever they will be doing - this is going to be a shock and a surprise.
Does this mean that people will not be forewarned? No; it does not mean this. This is the same situation that we find with Noah and the flood in Matthew 24. It says there that they “knew not until the flood came,” but this does not mean that the people of Noah’s day did not hear. They did hear. The Bible says that Noah was “a preacher of righteousness.” In Noah’s day, it was a world of just a handful of million, which would have been like the city of Philadelphia and its surrounding area.
So here was this man who had been working for years on an ark. This would be like how the people of Philadelphia all know that there is a clothespin sculpture outside of City Hall. Do we not all know this? This is just an unusual bit of art, but most of the inhabitants of the city are aware of this sculpture. Why are we aware of this? We are aware of this because we grew up in this area and word got around, so we went to look at it.
Are we to think that knowledge of a man building a ship the size of a cruise liner in his yard was not going to get around? Of course this got around. The people of Noah’s day knew. Then why does it say that the flood came and they “knew not”?
We read about this in Matthew 24:38-39:
…Noe [Noah] entered into the ark, And [they] knew not until the flood came, and took them all away; so shall also the coming of the Son of man be.
They heard, but they did not believe this. They dismissed this. They wrote him off as someone who was crazy, “In building this ark, this is an amazing thing that this man is doing, but he is crazy!”
There is also a mindset that people get into that is referred to in the Bible as “the will of the Gentiles” or “the will of man.” People follow along because of what is referred to as peer pressure. This is when people just follow along with what everybody else is doing and with what everybody else believes; and so the crowds were mostly likely mocking Noah and making a joke of this. I am sure that many felt, “I am not going to take a step out and say that I believe this, because I will also be mocked. I will be the joke.”
But look at the options that these people had. They could have either suffered a little reproach for the sake of Christ or die by drowning and perish forever. Who knows how an unsaved person is going to die when the five months begin.
Let us go to Proverbs 29 and we will see that God realizes that people hear His Word and do not listen. They do not listen. It says in Proverbs 29:1:
He, that being often reproved hardeneth his neck, shall suddenly be destroyed, and that without remedy.
There will be “sudden destruction” and they will be “unawares,” but did they hear? Yes; they heard. They heard “often.” They had been “often reproved.” The Bible tells us that “all scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness.”
As they keep hearing the Bible proclaim that Judgment Day is coming on May 21st, as they keep hearing this and hearing this and hearing this, they are being “often reproved.” They hear it or they see it on a billboard or they walk away from a person trying to hand them a tract or they leave the fellowship where they hear this proclaimed, and then they just move on with their lives and continue to live as though they did not hear this.
There are two ways in which people can respond. One way is to respond like all of the world before the flood, except for Noah and his family, and eat and drink and marry and give in marriage. It also says of Sodom that “they planted, they builded.” This just means that people were going about their everyday lives.
There is nothing wrong with eating and drinking. We have to eat and drink. There is nothing wrong with marrying and giving in marriage. God instituted this. He is the One who gave marriage. The problem is that these activities are for normal times, and we are in a very unusual time because we are at the time of the end.
This fact has never come upon another generation before us; and so people can respond like the people prior to the flood or the second option is that they can respond like the Ninevites. How did the Ninevites respond? The Ninevites sat in sackcloth and ashes and fasted. When people fast, do they eat and drink? No; not normally.
We know that the Ninevites also cried mightily unto God, and God leaves the information about the Ninevites there. He does not tell us how long the Ninevites did this. All that He tells us is that they did fast. In other words, the message of “yet forty days, and Nineveh shall be overthrown” interrupted their lives. They did not go on with business as usual. They allowed this to interrupt their lives.
It is like when people hear a hurricane warning. Has anyone ever experienced this? I never have. I know that they do in Florida. Has anyone ever been in a place where there was a hurricane warning and the weatherman was telling you when it was coming? They can almost predict the time that a hurricane can hit now.
So they give the warning out that a hurricane is coming within a couple of days. The individual who hears this also has an option. They can ignore this warning and just continue on with their daily routine of cleaning the house and going into the kitchen to make lunch and doing the laundry and getting the kids ready for school. They can treat this day like any other day.
But wait a minute! Did they not hear what the weatherman said? A hurricane is coming and it will bear down right on their city. It is going to come their way. It is going to hit their house, so what good does it do to do the dishes or to do the laundry when all of their dishes are probably going to be destroyed? What good is taking care of the clothes when all of the clothes that are in their house are going to be destroyed? This hurricane is going to rip their house to shreds.
So ignoring this is one option and this is the option that most people take, “I will just ignore this and dismiss this. I am not going to respond to this.” The other option is the option made by the Ninevites, and we know that only God can bring about this type of reaction.
Someone who takes this option when they hear that a hurricane is coming does not just sit back and wait for it. They take action. They board up their windows. They grab their valuables. They grab their family and they get in their vehicle and flee for safety.
This is what should happen physically in the world when people have enough sense to respond to danger in this way. Spiritually, we flee to God. We go to Him. We beseech Him for mercy. We cry out that He would save us.
In this nation, at least we are blessed that we are being “often reproved.” Things do not have to continue on the way in which we have been going. This does not have to continue. Now is a good time to take this warning seriously.
Jonah warned, “Yet forty days.” How long have we been talking about Jonah and Nineveh? In three weeks, it will be forty days until Judgment Day. We just have around sixty days left. In ten more days, we will be in the month of April and we will be able to say, “Next month will be Judgment Day.”
Maybe you are someone who is thinking, “I am a little nervous about this, so I am going to go to God tomorrow.” How long have you been thinking this? How long have you been saying this to yourself? It is always tomorrow, but you are running out of tomorrows. By God’s mercy, there is a tomorrow, but there are very few of them left.
Question #4 is from Paltalk: Can you give all of the verses that you know pertaining to Judgment Day coming in a rolling fashion from “nation to nation”?
Chris: We know that Jeremiah 25 speaks of “nation to nation.” Joel 2 is another good place to go. Many of us have been hearing Mr. Camping’s study on the book of Joel. Notice what it says in Joel 2:1-3:
Blow ye the trumpet in Zion, and sound an alarm in my holy mountain: let all the inhabitants of the land tremble: for the day of JEHOVAH cometh, for it is nigh at hand; A day of darkness and of gloominess, a day of clouds and of thick darkness, as the morning spread upon the mountains: a great people and a strong; there hath not been ever the like, neither shall be any more after it, even to the years of many generations. A fire devoureth before them; and behind them a flame burneth: the land is as the garden of Eden before them, and behind them a desolate wilderness; yea, and nothing shall escape them.
We can see this progression. This is actually referring to the people of God.
In Revelation 9, it identifies God’s people as “locusts.” What do locusts do when they swarm? They come upon a land. They devour everything and leave behind them a desolate wilderness; and then they move on.
It would appear that the idea of a rolling earthquake - beginning, we could say, in New Zealand and then progressing to Japan and the Philippines and beyond, until it reaches us in America - solves a lot of problems. This is because then everyone is on May 21st when the earthquake hits.
Also, if we go to Revelation 9, there was a troubling verse about “any green thing.” We read about locusts also in this passage. It says in Revelation 9:3-4:
And there came out of the smoke locusts upon the earth: and unto them was given power, as the scorpions of the earth have power. And it was commanded them that they should not hurt the grass of the earth, neither any green thing, neither any tree; but only those men which have not the seal of God in their foreheads.
This means that the “green thing,” the “grass” and the “trees,” are representing those who do have “the seal of God in their foreheads.”
People have been asking about this verse for quite awhile in relation to what this meant. Many thought that this was referring to the possibility of believers being here during the five months. However, we know that this is not possible. Now we can see that the locusts are coming like a progression across the earth as judgment comes to each nation.
Those of us who are in nations where this will happen later on, as well as the true believers in these nations who will not be affected by this judgment, might even be able to view what is going on in these other parts of the world; and so here God is telling the true believers not to worry because this judgment is not coming to hurt them. This is not coming to destroy the child of God. They will not be harmed. This judgment is only for the unsaved.
When it gets to us here in America on May 21st, this is what will happen. The earthquake will open the ground and God will take His people up. There will be no harm done to them by the locusts, because these locusts are the believers as they are going up into Heaven. God is going to use them to bring awful torment to the people of the world, especially to the professed Christians of the world.
There is another verse that I think ties in. We read in Psalm 46:1-3:
God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble. Therefore will not we fear, though the earth be removed, and though the mountains be carried into the midst of the sea; Though the waters thereof roar and be troubled, though the mountains shake with the swelling thereof. Selah.
So God’s people will not fear as this approaches. They will be able to see this coming, but God will give comfort. He will give encouragement to His people at that time. We can even recite this to ourselves. We will not fear even though we will be seeing the earth practically ripped apart and these things coming on the world.
Question #5 is from the fellowship: Does Lamentations 4:10-15 apply to this?
The hands of the pitiful women have sodden their own children: they were their meat in the destruction of the daughter of my people. JEHOVAH hath accomplished his fury; he hath poured out his fierce anger, and hath kindled a fire in Zion, and it hath devoured the foundations thereof. The kings of the earth, and all the inhabitants of the world, would not have believed that the adversary and the enemy should have entered into the gates of Jerusalem. For the sins of her prophets, and the iniquities of her priests, that have shed the blood of the just in the midst of her, They have wandered as blind men in the streets, they have polluted themselves with blood, so that men could not touch their garments. They cried unto them, Depart ye; it is unclean; depart, depart, touch not: when they fled away and wandered, they said among the heathen, They shall no more sojourn there.
I think we can again see God’s judgment on His people, the professed Christians in the churches and congregations, which ties into our day.
We will stop here.