May 30, 2022

Ep.: What is the difference between a burnt offering and a sin offering?

There was clearly a difference between sin offerings and burnt offerings. Each of these offerings were subdivided, depending on the occasion. But the main difference is that sin offerings were compulsory while burnt offerings, peace offerings and grain offerings were voluntary.  That difference is significant. The main sin offering required by God was on the great Day of Atonement, when the sins of the entire nation were atoned for. (Leviticus 16). This is symbolic of the atoning sacrifice of Christ as the “antitypical” bullock offered on that day.

However, there were other, less significant sin offerings presented. The chart below may be helpful in seeing the various types of offerings. It details the types of sin offerings, who they were for, how the sacrifices were handled, and the symbolic meaning of each one.

One key to knowing when these other sin offerings are applied anti typically is to answer, “what was done with the blood?”

If it was taken into the Holy and sprinkled towards the second veil, the symbolism pertained to the church in this age or time period. This was the case when a sin was committed by a priest or the congregation, If the blood remained in the court and sprinkled around that altar, then the picture pertains to the next age when mankind is resurrected and dealt with. This was the case when an individual Israelite sinned.

Burnt offerings served a different purpose. Since they were not required, they represent freewill offerings. For example, in Leviticus 1 any Israelite could bring a burnt offering of various types of animals, from bulls to pigeons. (See the chart on the various animals used) He gave these to the High Priest and they were burned on the altar in the tabernacle court. This cooperation between the one bringing an offering and the High Priest sacrificing the animal, represents the work of Jesus and the church during the Millennial Age as they work with mankind to train them in righteousness. To make progress each individual must be willing to learn and grow. This is shown when the individual places his hands on the animal, as if saying, “this animal represents me.” The priest then offered the sacrifice to God on behalf of the individual. In burnt offerings we see a cooperation between individual Israelites and the High Priest.

However, there is one burnt offering that strictly applies to Jesus. It is called the “continual burnt offering,” It’s the second burnt offering category listed on the sheet. One lamb was offered in the morning, as the first offering of the day, and another lamb was offered in the afternoon, the last offering of the day. This beautifully corresponds to the time Jesus spent on the cross. He was placed on the cross at 9:00 AM and died at 3:00 PM. His offering allowed all future sacrifices to be acceptable to God. It was continual in the sense that Jesus’ sacrifice continues without the need for repetition.  As you can see there is much to study along these lines.

For a detailed look at the different offerings see our chart: Tabernacle Offerings

To learn more about sacrifices and the Jewish tabernacle listen to, “Should Christians Care About the Jewish Tabernacle?”

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May 30, 2022

Ep.1231: What if I’m Not Good Enough for Heaven?

Uncovering the destiny of humanity's billions who don’t go to heaven

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CHAPTERS

[00:15:46]
What is the Day of Judgment actually about?


[00:30:12]
What does the reconciliation process look like for those who aren't good enough to go to heaven?


[00:45:29]
Does Bible prophecy show the end result of every human being?


Theme Scripture: Matthew 7:13-14

The vast majority of Christian belief systems may have a problem. What do they do with the billions of humanity who aren’t true followers of Jesus, but they aren’t terrible people either? These billions try to live a good life by being decent and kind to one another. Many of these have not heard the name of Jesus in any meaningful way. Can we say that God will destroy them for essentially being born in the wrong time and place? That doesn’t make sense! Can we say that they go to heaven when they die? That doesn’t make sense either. Jesus taught us that going to heaven is a call that is difficult and requires deliberate choices. God loves humanity so much that he sent His only son Jesus as our ransom. That being the case, what does happen to those billions who are not good enough for heaven?

Continue Reading

Who are the "good" people?

The idea that all good people go to heaven cannot be even remotely defended from the Bible. According to Jesus’ own words, following him requires one to deny themselves, take up their cross and follow him daily. This is no recipe that the masses of good-hearted humanity would ever sign up for. Fortunately, the Bible does clearly describe the fate of those whose destination is not heaven. Here’s a big hint:  this destination is not some burning place of torment either.

Everyone was condemned to sin and death, but...

Romans chapter 5 is perhaps one of the most detailed explanations of the destiny of all humanity in the entire Bible. The chapter begins with Paul speaking about true Christianity and the amazing gift of grace they have all been given. He then shifts his focus and talks about the entire race of humanity being condemned to sin and death because of Adam. Paul’s undeniable point is that Jesus’ sacrifice unequivocally included every single person who was ever born in Adam. He says that Jesus’ righteous sacrifice gave every one of them “justification of life,” according to Romans 5:18. So, what does that mean? How does that work?

To be "justified" is to be made right before God. Obviously, the people of the world in all of their sin and godlessness are not now in any way made right before God. The Bible tells us this being made right will be as a result of their resurrection. But doesn’t the Day of Judgment happen then? Yes, it does! So, how does this all fit together?

Check out our May 30, 2022 podcast, “What if I’m Not Good Enough for Heaven?” for details. We focus in on what the Bible reveals is in store for those who are not heaven bound. We weigh the blessing of their resurrection against the weight of their coming accountability. What we find is a logical and revealing process of how God’s plan works for and not against them. Join us as we unfold the several similarities and major differences between salvation for Jesus’ followers and for everybody else.

 

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May 30, 2022

Ep.: Why did God consider certain animals “unclean”?

The main reason God categorized certain animals as “unclean” was to highlight the difference between holiness and sin. Dietary laws controlled what individuals put into their bodies. For ancient Israel, which was surrounded by heathen nations and customs, it was important to have physical reminders of what constituted sin and what was holy. Not only were there health benefits to kosher laws, but the implied message was that Israel’s relationship with God was to influence every aspect of their lives.

In Lev. 11:45 God said,

“For I am the LORD that bringeth you up out of the land of Egypt, to be your God: ye shall therefore be holy, for I am holy.”

The Law itself made it clear that a person’s conduct could be sinful, but with the addition of unclean “things” the lesson was made even stronger, that sin came in many forms, from the grossest sins to simple sins of neglect. This is a meaningful lesson for us today. What we put into our minds and the activities we put into our lives can be wholesome and pure, or sinful on various levels.

Our relationship with God demands that we conduct our lives in a way that reflects God’s own purity. When an Israelite violated a kosher law there were various remedies that must be followed. For example, If someone touched the carcass of an unclean animal he was to wash his clothes and remain unclean until evening (Lev. 11:25). Other, more severe cases, required that certain animal sacrifices be offered (Lev. 5:6).

Jews also considered Gentiles as unclean and were not permitted to keep company with them (Acts 10:28).  The reason Peter was given the vision of the unclean animals in Acts 10 was to reveal that Gentiles were now acceptable to God and should be accepted as equals. Gentiles could now have a relationship with God, not through animal sacrifices, but because Jesus’ atoning sacrifice was now available to all.

When Peter hesitated eating an unclean animal God’s response was, “What God hath cleansed, that call not thou common” (Acts 10:15). Peter’s vision then has little to do with what they ate but was given to show that anyone desiring to know and serve God could come to Him through the merit of Christ.

Most Christians today believe we are no longer restricted in what to eat. Israel’s dietary laws were meant to keep them apart from the sinful practices and influences of the Gentiles. But, on a spiritual level, that same principle of staying away from sin and living holy lives still applies and is termed “sanctification.”

To learn more about what the law means for Christians listen to, “Does the Old Testament Law Apply to Me?”

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May 23, 2022

Ep.1230: Why Would God Bless Two Immoral Women?

How Tamar and Rahab faced their immorality and found God’s blessing

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CHAPTERS

[00:13:51]
Did Tamar have the right to sin because of how she was treated?


[00:30:44]
How was Rahab faithful in spite of her circumstances?


[00:43:05]
Why is there an unusual scarlet thread in the accounts of both Tamar and Rahab?


Theme Scripture: Joshua 2:12

God does not reward sin. On the contrary, He abhors it! Satan’s first rebellious thoughts against God will result in his eventual destruction. Adam’s sin of disobedience has and continues to result in the power of sin, evil and death plaguing our world to this day. Enter Tamar and Rahab. These are two Old Testament women who both acted immorally and yet found their way into a very unusual position of God’s favor. They were two of only five women listed in the genealogy of Jesus. How can this be? Did God make an exception for them? What was it they did or didn’t do to have the privilege of having Jesus be a descendant of their blood lines? The answers to these questions are found in the fascinating accounts and decisions of their lives.

Continue Reading

Who was Tamar?

Tamar lived long before the nation of Israel was established. She lived at the time when Jacob and his 12 sons (who would become the 12 tribes of Israel) were alive. Tamar was the widowed daughter-in-law of Judah, one of those 12 sons. Tamar’s sin was to dress up like a prostitute and entice Judah (who was a widower at the time) into sexual relations. Tamar got pregnant, had twins, and one of those twins ends up being in the lineage of Jesus himself. Before jumping to conclusions, it is important to point out that at this time in his life, Judah was no shining example of morality himself. Could two wrongs make something right? Why would God allow the lineage of Jesus to come from such a profoundly immoral ancestry?

Who was Rahab?

Our next example is Rahab. She lived several generations later. She was a Canaanite woman who lived in the city of Jericho at the time Israel conquered it. Rahab didn’t just dress up like a prostitute, she was one. In spite of her profession, she was instrumental in hiding and aiding the two spies Joshua sent into the city. How did she help them? She lied several times. Rahab and her family were spared from death when the city fell. They were relocated to live with the nation of Israel and Rahab also was blessed with being in the lineage of Jesus. Once again the question arises, why would God use such an person with such a reputation to be part of Jesus’ own ancestry?

Check out our May 23, 2022 podcast, “Why Would God Bless Two Immoral Women?” for more. We put these accounts of Tamar and Rahab in order by assembling and examining the details and their context. There are several profound lessons that this investigation reveals. One very foundational lesson is that no matter how it may appear, God does not condone immoral behavior. On the contrary, He always has and always will plainly condemn it. This foundation opens the door for being able to grasp how God was able to bless these women within the context of their wrongdoing. Join us for a fascinating journey into two rarely talked about biblical accounts that teach amazing lessons!

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May 23, 2022

VIDEO: Why Did God Tell Abraham to Sacrifice Isaac?

God gave Abraham a task, and Abraham promptly obeyed. But how could Abraham even consider such a thing? His faith and obedience inspires us. Parents and Bible class teachers, watch this 2-min video for kids to find the answer to this difficult topic. Subscribe to our channel at ChristianQuestions.com/YouTube to never miss a future video!

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May 18, 2022

Ep.: Are Christian apologetics biblical?

Apologetics is being able to give an answer for your Christian faith to those who ask.
1 Peter 3:15 says:

But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts, and be ready always to give an answer to every man who asketh you a reason for the hope that is in you, with meekness and fear.

The Phillips translation says:
After all, who in the ordinary way is likely to injure you for being enthusiastic for good? And if it should happen that you suffer “for righteousness’ sake”, that is a privilege. You need neither fear their threats nor worry about them; simply concentrate on being completely devoted to Christ in your hearts. Be ready at any time to give a quiet and reverent answer to any man who wants a reason for the hope that you have within you. Make sure that your conscience is perfectly clear, so that if men should speak slanderously of you as rogues they may come to feel ashamed of themselves for libelling your good Christian behaviour.
Reading the whole chapter is excellent.  In context, we are to repay evil with blessing and pursue peace whenever we can.  When we are persecuted or suffering for righteousness, we are told to be ready with a gentle and respectful explanation of why we are following Jesus which in turn has changed our characters to be as spotless as we can make them.  Those who malign us should have nothing to actually condemn us for.
Verse 17 says
“For it is better, if it is God’s will, to suffer for doing good than for doing evil.”
Knowing who we serve and what we stand for doctrinally is of utmost importance.  This is why continually Bible study, especially topical study, is crucial for our Christian growth and development.  We should not base our belief system on what we’ve been told, what everyone else in our surroundings believes, how we grew up or the traditions of man handed down through generations. We pray to have a greater measure of God’s spirit, His power and influence, to help us to understand.
1 Thessalonians 5:21:  Prove all things; hold fast that which is good.
What we have learned must be proven – compared against other scriptures to make sure there is harmony; compared against the character of God to make sure it does not conflict; compared against superstitions and traditions of the world to make sure we find what is true.  The word “good” here includes the thought of genuine.
This is what we are doing each week at Christian Questions, by topically and methodically using scripture to prove scripture so that our faith is both true and reasonable, and fits harmoniously with other scriptures and what has been revealed about the character of God and His son Jesus.  While we do not formally call this “apologetics,” this type of Bible study uplifts us, strengthens our faith, and yes, gives us the ability to explain to others why we have such a hope within us.
2 Timothy 2:5:  Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.
To learn more about how to approach Bible study listen to, “Are There Secrets to Studying the Bible?”
To learn more about how to figure out if your beliefs are biblically based or not listen to, “Are My Christian Beliefs Based on Truth or Error?”

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May 16, 2022

Ep.1229: I’m a Christian and I’m Angry! What Now?

How anger works and how to transform it into a positive influence

If you do not have a password, please subscribe to our FREE Premium Content for the Full Edition version of CQ Rewind. The welcome message will contain your password, and a reminder will be sent each week when the CQ Rewind is available online for you to read, print, or download.

CHAPTERS

[00:14:58]
What can we learn from God's anger?


[00:30:44]
What did Jesus' anger look like?


[00:46:07]
How can I transform my anger from a destructive force to a positive force?


Theme Scripture: Colossians 3:8

We all get angry. In today’s social media world, we can easily find a platform to express that anger. Our anger develops when we hear or see something that we interpret as causing fear, frustration or offense. We react to our perception, and the seeds of anger are sown and grown in an instant. Once angry, we often find it justifiable to lash out with our own brand of challenge, retaliation or defiance. Our anger has now grown from a personal internal emotion into a larger and more threatening external action which is usually destructive and not constructive. As Christians, what are we supposed to do with this human instinct? Should we allow ourselves to get angry? Both God and Jesus got angry, so does that give us permission?

Continue Reading

Anger doesn’t just happen on its own. On the contrary, it is generally seen as a secondary emotion. It engages because we have felt something else that provokes us to anger. According to the article in Current Topics in Behavioral Neurosciences, “Deconstructing Anger in the Human Brain,” by Gadi Gilam and Talma Hendler, there are three primary emotions that can drive us towards anger:

  1. Real or imagined threat such as physical or psychological pain
  2. Frustration due to goal obstruction
  3. Perceived personal offense due to unfair treatment, violation of social norms, insults, rejections, criticism, and the like.

Why is it important to know this? As Christians, we are just as susceptible to feeling threatened, frustration, and perceived personal offenses as anyone else. However, we are specifically given a much higher standard than others to manage our anger. While the Scriptures tell us being angry is not necessarily wrong, that is only the beginning of the story. The Bible also reveals different levels of anger, and we are specifically instructed to never engage in some of them.

We can learn from God's example of anger

If we observe the many biblical accounts where God was angry, we see a pattern. God’s anger was in a broad sense always focused on humanity's rejection of His righteousness - and therefore of Him. Because we know God does have a plan for all, we can understand His expressions of anger as for the ultimate good of humanity. God’s anger was and is a tool of His righteousness.

We can learn from Jesus' example of anger

There were a few times in Jesus’ ministry when he got angry. Very angry. When we look at what he said and what he did, it can help us understand what appropriate anger should look like. Here’s a hint, it is not easy to achieve! Check out our May 16, 2022 podcast, “I’m a Christian and I’m Angry. What Now?” for more. We observe how anger works on a physiological level and how our physiology automatically engages our emotions. Anger is instinctive. We can choose whether its drive will be a force of constructive contribution or a force of destruction and disaster. The anger we see in our world now is primarily destructive. Join us and learn how to stand against that tide!

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May 16, 2022

Ep.: What does it mean to be “wise as serpents”?

What Jesus said at the beginning of that verse is important. It says,
“Behold, I send you forth as sheep in the midst of wolves: be ye therefore wise as serpents, and harmless as doves.” Matthew 16:10
Jesus knew that the ones he was sending out to spread the Gospel would be in physical danger from some in the world. Jesus calls them “wolves,” while his followers he characterizes as “sheep.” When he says they should be wise as serpents, he meant they should be careful in dealing with the world. The Greek word translated “”wise” means to be “discreet or “careful.” A serpent is cautious when presented with a dangerous situation. So this is Jesus’ way to remind the preachers of the Gospel to use wisdom and not put themselves in unnecessary danger.
At the same time they should be harmless, or innocent as doves. They should not return evil for evil, but simply preach the truth and cause no harm. There is great wisdom in  what Jesus said. We are not to fear the world, but at the same time, be careful of its influence and occasional desire to harm those who speak truth.
To learn more about wisdom listen to, “Is Anyone Listening to the Wisdom of the Bible?”

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