|Dr. Couch, what do we do with Galatians 2:20? Have you noticed the similarity with Romans 6:6?|
ANSWER: Yes, there is a similarity but too, there is a difference. Romans 6:6 reads: "Knowing that our old man was crucified with Him, that our body of sin might be done away with, that we should no longer be slaves to sin."
"Crucified (once and for all) with Him" is an Aorist Tense. It is completed and finished action. In our Position before God, we died with Christ. Our old self was crucified and judged but still active and causing us grief in the Christian walk. Paul attests to this when he writes: "I am not practicing what I would like to do, but I am doing the very thing I hate" (7:15).
Galatians 2:20 goes from this statement about Positional truth to the daily Experience of the believer as he walks about here on earth. Paul uses the Perfect Tense which reads: "I have been progressively crucified with Christ …" In other words the action started in the past and comes up to the present. The result is impacting us now.
On the Perfect Tense, the great Greek grammarians Dana and Mantey say this: It "shows the progress of an act to a point of culmination with its finished results. It implies a process that reaches its consummation, into a finished state. It can be shown this way:
Start>>>>>>>>>>>>>Culmination in the Present.
Putting it all together, Galatians 2:20 reads
I have been crucified with Christ (with the present impact being) it is no longer I who am presently living (Present Tense), but Christ is presently living (Present Tense) in me; and the [life] which I now am living (Present Tense) in the flesh (in this body), I am living (Present Tense) by the Son of God, the One who distinctly loved (Aorist Participle) me and who distinctly gave Himself over, delivered Himself up (Aorist Participle) for me.
The verse starts with Positional truth and then progresses to Experiential truth concerning daily living out the Christian life! This is about the mysterious work of Christ living through the believer. It is impossible to fully understand or explain. We are new creatures. But too, there is the struggle in the Christian walk because there is conflict going on with the flesh. He deals with that in chapter 5. Paul writes: "I say, be continually walking by means of the Spirit, and you will not carry out the lust of the flesh" (v. 16). If we walk by the Spirit then "you may not do the things that you please" (v. 17). "For the flesh sets its desire against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh; for these are in opposition to one another" (v. 17a). "If we are in the new Position, living by means of the Spirit, then let us also in our Experience be walking by means of the Spirit [and not by means of the flesh]" (v. 25).
Can believers transgress in the flesh? You bet they can! Paul writes, "Brethren, even if a man is caught in any trespass …" (6:1).
I hope this helps. Thanks for asking.
Dr. Mal Couch
Saturday, February 28, 2009
Friday, February 27, 2009
| As reported by the Simon Wiesenthal Center, persecution of the Jewish community in Caracas, Venezuela is increasing. It has gotten worse over the past few years with Hebrew schools being targeted. Some are talking about going home to Israel. God has often used persecution to drive the Jews back to the Holy Land. The Jews who got to Israel after World War II said that clearly the Lord used Hitler as a whip to drive them back to the Promised Land!|
Los Angeles: Anti-Israeli marches with swastikas painted on Israeli flags that read "Upgrade to Holocaust 2.0."
Amsterdam: Marches in the streets: "Gas the Jews!"
France: Increasing of firebombing of synagogues, Jewish children beaten in the streets.
Fort Lauderdale, Fl.: Demonstrators shouting, "Go back to the oven! You need a big oven, that's what you need!"
Denmark: School principles have told Jewish parents that their children are unwelcome because of an offense to Muslim students.
Sweden: Demonstrators shouting, "The Jews should leave!"
Quebec: Over eighty professors at colleges and universities have supported boycotting the Jewish State. They say Israel has caused destructive attacks on children.
Things are getting worse, not better. – Dr. Mal Couch
Thursday, February 26, 2009
|Dr. Couch, what does the word "power" mean, and what is going on in Matthew 26:64?|
ANSWER: The verse reads: "Hereafter you shall see the Son of Man sitting at the right hand of Power, and coming on the clouds of heaven."
Some foolish allegorists and amillennialists think this is about Christ's final coming to simply judge humanity, with eternity beginning right after that. Actually, the word here is speaking of God Himself! The passage is about the Lord's coming to reign on the Davidic throne for the 1,000 year millennial rule. The expression Son of Man is messianic and is never used in relationship to the church. The rule here is not His rule presently over the church. And the Kingdom of God is certainly not the church. It is the promised Kingdom period. Christ has two main offices: (1) to die for the sins of mankind, and (2) to be the King of Israel sitting on the literal throne in Jerusalem as promised in the OT. How dare the amillennial guys to remove His second major office from history! They say that the church has "replaced" His Kingdom reign! What audacity!
The NAS translates dunameos as Power. The word has the thought of "might, strength, ability, capability." In this Matthew 26:64 passage the word is used of God Himself. He is the POWER. He is no less! There is no other Power in the universe!
The word can also be used simply as a noun. Mark 13:25 speaks of the "stars of heaven falling and THE POWERS (pl.) of the heavens being shaken."
Ephesians 1:21 says that Christ presently is "seated at the right hand of God in the heavenly places, far above all rule and authority and powers (exousia) and DOMINION (dunameos)." Dominion implies that Christ's great power controls all aspects of the universe. He is fully in charge!
Thanks for asking.
Dr. Mal Couch
Wednesday, February 25, 2009
|Dr. Couch, some say that John 10:14-16 shows that the church is now part of Israel. Is this so?|
ANSWER: Of course not. And, those who take such a view have not read the passage carefully. In the context, Christ is calling Himself the "good shepherd" (v. 14). He is taking on the description of God that is found in Ezekiel 34. There, the heavenly Father calls Himself the Shepherd and Israel His sheep. He reminds them that they are being scattered but that He will someday bring them back to their Promised Land (v. 13).
In the John 10 passage, the Lord takes on that same designation, the Good Shepherd. He then says "I have other sheep, which are not of this (sheep) fold; I must bring them also, and they shall (in the future) hear My voice; and they shall (in the future) become one flock with one Shepherd (which would be Christ)" (v. 16).
Christ is the Shepherd to all believers, whether to the OT Jews or for the church. But note, the "other sheep" are not of the same (sheep) fold, that is the other sheep fold which is Israel, though there is a common relationship that OT saints and/or NT saints have with Him: He is the Shepherd for both! This does not mean that the church has become part of the Jewish Kingdom or of the nation of Israel.
All people who are redeemed are redeemed by the death of Christ. His death goes back to the saving of the OT saints, and it goes forward to saving the NT saints; but there are two different sheep folds!
Study by context, context, and, keep the lines straight when interpreting the Bible!
Thanks for asking.
Dr. Mal Couch
Tuesday, February 24, 2009
|Dr. Couch, I have friends who foolishly say the church is in the OT. They say that the Greek Septuagint, for example, translates the Hebrew word "congregation" from the Greek word "ecclesia" which can be "church." Thus, the doctrine of the church is in the OT. How do you answer?|
ANSWER: These people are just plain foolish and ignorant! I can't be anymore strong about it. The Greek word "ecclesia" can be translated "church, assembly, congregation" but that is simply a judgment call by the translators. Context determines whether we are speaking about the NT doctrine of the church or not. (Note Numbers 10:2.) This is simply a translation issue and not a doctrinal issue.
The doctrine of the church is something brand new in the NT. The Bible is not saying that the doctrine of the NT church is in the OT. And these people who so argue are really crazy and blind, and I might add, argumentative! I can't help but believe they really know better but they want the Bible to say what they want it to say, even throwing common sense to the wind!
In some ways, it is not worth our time to argue with them. Their heads are in the sand and their arguments are so nutty that it is impossible to discuss such issues with them!
Thanks for asking.
Dr. Mal Couch
Monday, February 23, 2009
|Dr. Couch, what is the "new" nation that Christ is speaking about in Matthew 21:43? Some say it is the church, and that the Kingdom of God has been taken away from the Jews and given to the "church," which is that new nation.|
ANSWER: The passage says (Matthew 21:33-44) that the vine-growers take the owner's son (who would be Christ in the context) and kill him and seize his inheritance (v. 38). The Lord adds: The stone which the builders rejected has become the chief corner stone (v. 42). Then, "The kingdom of God will be taken away from you (the chief priests and the Pharisees), and be given to a nation producing the fruit of it" (v. 43).
Some foolishly argue that this means the Kingdom of God is taken from the Jews and given to the Gentiles, the church! How does the church "produce the fruit of the Kingdom"? There is no comparison between what happens in the dispensation of the Kingdom and what is now taking place in the dispensation of the church! The Kingdom is a theocracy, with Israel, confined in its governorship to the Promised Land, though the Messiah's rule is worldwide. There is the restoration of the priesthood (Zadokian priesthood) and the restoration of a new Kingdom temple (Ezek. 40-48).
Secondly, the church is never called "a nation." The Jewish leadership got the point; they knew He was speaking of them. "They understood that He was speaking about them" (v. 45). Christ is speaking about a future generation of Jews, a new and later Jewish nation that will embrace the Kingdom. He said, "Truly I say to you, all these things shall come upon this generation" (23:36). A future generation, a new nation, will receive and accept the Kingdom!
Some dumbly attempt to say that when Peter quotes Exodus 19:6, he is there calling the church the "holy nation" as was applied to Israel. Exodus 19:6 reads: "You shall be to Me a kingdom of priests and a holy nation. These are the words that you shall speak to the sons of Israel." (Notice it has to do with Israel, not the church!) Peter quotes this in 1 Peter 2:9 and says to the Jews who are in the Diaspora (the scattered ones), "You are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation." While it is true that Peter is writing to Jews who now belong to the church, his point is that the believing Jews have this as their heritage with its national promise. He is not applying this in the broad sense to the church. He says to those Jews, the "scattered Jews," that they have such promises as a nation. In fact, he goes on and says, you are "a people for God's own possession" (v. 9). The believing Jews now have received the promised blessings of the New Covenant as prophesied in Jeremiah 31:31-on. These Jews "obeyed Jesus Christ and [were] sprinkled with His blood" (the New Covenant). They had received grace "in the fullest measure."
Thus, even believing Jews today can be proud of their historic heritage. They were God's "race," His holy race, and "a royal priesthood" that represented Him on earth, and as well, they were designated "a holy nation" which is not said of the church. The church is not a race or a nation, but this is how the Jewish people, even today, are described!
Thanks for asking.
Dr. Mal Couch
Sunday, February 22, 2009
|Dr. Couch, what is the lie that people will believe in the end times?|
ANSWER: The word lie comes from the word pseudos, and can be translated lie, deceive, false. Surprisingly, the NT uses the word often with many verifications and combinations. One of the key passages where the word is used in found in 2 Thessalonians 2:9-12. There, it is used in the context of the tribulation when Satan seems to have complete control of the world and its philosophies. But it must be kept in mind that, while the passage is about the seven year tribulation, what is happening in that period really began some years before the rapture of the church. In other words, the world progressively moves into that horrible period, not just suddenly!
Satan during the tribulation will be active "with all power and signs and false (lying) wonders" (v. 9). He will deceive the world "with all deception (trickery) of wickedness for those who perish, because they did not receive the love of the truth so as to be saved" (v. 10). Notice the open door for the satanic deception begins with the world's attitude of not loving the truth! The world does not desire the truth and has no love for it. For this reason, God will send upon them a deluding (leading astray) spirit (influence) "so that they might believe what is false (a lie), in order that they all may be judged who did not believe the truth, but took pleasure in wickedness" (vv. 11-12).
Now, what is the lie?
The lie may include many things but it begins with a denial of God. Paul writes in Romans 1:25: The lost "exchanged the truth (about) God for a lie (for that which is false), and worshipped and served the creature rather than the Creator …" The creature is better translated as "That which is created," the physical. To worship humanity is part of this as well. What mankind can create and do is worshipped rather than the God who made man.
Just recently many churches celebrated the birth of Charles Darwin. They consider him a great man and scientist. Darwin replaced "chance" with God, not just in his science, but in his theology. God is dead! The world today despises the truth, and rejects God. Therefore, it is becoming more and more humanistic and moving deeper into immorality. The world has said "There is no God" (Psa. 14:1). From that, men feel no compulsion to know the God of Scripture. Instead, they commit "abominable deeds; there is no one who does God." "They have turned aside; have become corrupt" (v. 3).
This is why there is on its way, the wrath of God! In the future, in the Kingdom period, "salvation will come out of Zion (Israel)" (v. 7), when the Lord restores His captive people, (then) Jacob (Israel) will rejoice, Israel will be glad" (v. 7b).
For the deceiver, the liar, "There is no fear of God before his eyes" (Psa. 36:1). TV shows us the direction the world is going. There is no turning back. We are into the apostasy. The rapture of the church is probably closer than we can imagine!
Thanks for asking.
Dr. Mal Couch
Saturday, February 21, 2009
| It's not going; it is gone! It is all over for this country. Evil is becoming more evil, and, we're now like the European nations—socialistic and virtually anti-God! American Socialist Party leader, Norman Thomas, said in a 1944 speech that America will never knowingly adopt socialism, but under the name of "liberalism," it will adopt fragments of the socialistic program, and, one day it will be socialistic. He went on to say: "I no longer need to run as a Presidential candidate for the Socialist Party. The Democratic Party has adopted our platform." Britain's Margaret Thatcher said: "The problem with socialism is that you eventually run out of other people's money."|
Where is the source of the sewage that is destroying and polluting America? It is our secular and state universities. They are pumping into the minds of our young people, anti-Christianity, evolutionary, socialistic, and liberalistic philosophies, etc. They should receive an A because they have done a great job and accomplished what they sat out to do—turn this nation into a communistic-like, socialistic nation! -- Dr. Mal Couch
Friday, February 20, 2009
|Dr. Couch, what is going on in Matthew 19:28 where Christ says that He would be with the believers in the "regeneration"?|
ANSWER: The Lord is talking about the regeneration, the receiving of salvation, in the Kingdom, "when the Son of Man sits on His glorious throne," with "the twelve disciples sitting on twelve thrones judging the twelve tribes of Israel." This word "regeneration" is palingenesia (the again birth) and it is used only one more time, in Titus 3:5.
That passage reads, God "saved us, not on the basis of deeds which we have done in righteousness, but according to His mercy, by the washing of the regeneration (the again birth) and the renewing (the again newing, remaking) by the Holy Spirit."
"The again birth" or the "regeneration," by the Holy Spirit, has to do with the New Covenant. The New Covenant was ratified by the death of Christ and launched at Pentecost. Christ said in Luke 22:20 "This cup which is poured out for you is the new covenant in My blood." His sacrifice on the cross, the pouring out of His blood, begins the New Covenant. The church does not fulfill this covenant but benefits by it.
The New Covenant will be fulfilled by Israel when the Kingdom begins, and that is what is said in Matthew 19:28. In Titus 3:5, it is clear that church saints are saved by the New Covenant, the regeneration work of the Holy Spirit. The church is not Israel, and Israel is not the church.
Paul makes it clear that we today represent the New Covenant. He says that God made us, the church saints, "adequate as servants of a new covenant, not of the letter (of the Law), but of the Spirit; for the letter (of the Law) kills, but the Spirit (through the New Covenant) gives life" (2 Cor. 3:6).
Matthew 19:28 is a great passage that proves the point. For Israel, the "regeneration" of the New Covenant will be fulfilled in the Kingdom.
Christ refers to the regeneration coming, in John 3:3. He told Nicodemus "Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God (the millennial kingdom)." Born again here is two distinct words. Born happens to be part of the word "regeneration," or the verb gennao. It is an Aorist Passive Subjunctive. The action comes upon the subject. The word again here is mistranslated. It is the Greek word anothen which is better translated from above. However, the idea, and the relationship between the two thoughts are related. To be born again is to be born from above. This is the work of the New Covenant carried out by the Holy Spirit! In John 3, Christ is talking about the same thing as He is in Matthew 19:28. He is not speaking about being born again in the church dispensation but in the Kingdom dispensation. The Lord makes that clear. "Truly, truly, I say to you (Nicodemus) unless one is born of water and (that is, even), the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God" (v. 5).
(Christ is not referring to water baptism but to the washing of the Spirit which is the application of the New Covenant. Jesus is referring to Ezekiel 36:25-27 which promises the coming work of the New Covenant. "This I will sprinkle (slosh) clean water on you (the Jews), and you will be clean … I will put My Spirit within you and cause you to walk in My statutes …" Christ chided Nicodemus that he should have known this Ezekiel passage. He asked him, "Are you the teacher of Israel, and do not understand (know) these things?" (John 3:10). Where could Nicodemus have known of that truth? Only from Ezekiel 36:25-27.
Thanks for asking.
Dr. Mal Couch
Thursday, February 19, 2009
| It is reported that the Chinese are getting tired of purchasing our government bonds and giving America a bail out from our accesses. We are now a consumer nation and not a producing country. "As you can imagine, this gives China tremendous leverage over us, making it the dominant player in the New World Order." China may soon grow tire of propping America up. They soon may stop financing our deficits, but if so, who will?|
No one will be capable of doing what they are doing, which means, America will have to start up the printing press and turn out more money, which in turn, will cause massive inflation!
It is my opinion that there is no way out of our national mess! We will make the 1929 Stock Market crash look like a Sunday school picnic. If you watch some of the news TV shows, you'll see America laughing and entertaining itself all the way to the edge of the cliff. The average citizen just does not get it! This is a judgment of God coming upon us, but not just us, the entire world will be looking for that strong man (Obama?) to get us out of the mess. Meanwhile, we will become slaves to the system, to the government, and to socialism. Our freedoms are slipping away quickly.
Though applied to the tribulation, 2 Thessalonians 2:10-12 gives us the set-up that leads to that terrible period. "God will send upon them (the world) a deluding spirit (influence) so that they might believe the lie, in order that they all may be judged who did not believe the truth, but took pleasure in wickedness." We need to "gain the glory," hold the traditions, "comfort and have good hope by grace," and "comfort and strengthen your hearts in every good work and word" (vv. 13-17). – Dr. Mal Couch
Wednesday, February 18, 2009
| Kissinger told CNBC that Obama is the architect of a "New World Order." He added, "It's a great opportunity, it isn't just a crisis." No one would have ever expected such a statement from him. He has to some degree been fairly conservative in his views. But such a statement is the sign of the times. In my opinion there is a satanic blindness going on that is unexplainable from a rational point of view.|
Tuesday, February 17, 2009
|Dr. Couch, is Psalm 83 about the end times? It seems to be prophetic concerning the nations that are near her and who come against Israel in the latter days. What do you think?|
ANSWER: I agree. The psalmist Asaph pleads with God not to remain silent. "For behold, Your enemies make an uproar; and those who hate You have exalted themselves. They [will] make shrewd plans against Your people, and conspire against Your treasured ones" (vv. 1-3). More, "They have said, 'Come, and let us wipe them out as a nation, that the name of Israel be remembered no more'" (v. 4).
They have conspired "together with one mind; against You do they make a covenant" (v. 5). (Does this seem like today!) What adds to this view is the fact that the nations mentioned who despise Israel are the nations surrounding her and that are the closest to the Promised Land! "Edom and the Ishmaelites," Moab, Ammon, and the Amalekites. Philistia and the inhabitants of Tyre. But more, even the Assyrians, who today would be the peoples of Iraq and Iran! The way the text puts it, is that the "Assyrians also have joined with them" (v. 7). In other words, the people of Iraq and Iran have joined in a pact to come and help the nations who are closer to Israel to come and help destroy her!
A hundred years ago or so, all the Arab peoples were called by the West, the "Ishmaelites." Today, the enemies of the Jewish people have all been mixed up together; they now are the descendants of the nations mentioned above.
As with the Arabs today, they want what the Jews have. They want to take over the Promised Land, the Holy Land, as their own. They say, "Let us possess for ourselves the pastures of God" (v. 12).
But the Lord will have the last word. He is beseeched by the psalmist to "make them like the whirling dust; like chaff before the wind. Like fire that burns the forest, and like a flame that sets the mountains on fire, so pursue them with Your tempest, and terrify them with Your storm" (vv. 13-15).
While these peoples have an opportunity to turn to God, they more than likely will not. "They will be humbled and perish" (v. 17). They will then know that God's "name is the Lord, and that He is the Most High over all the earth" (v. 18).
Unger believes also that Psalm 83 is a prophetic glimpse of Israel's future troubles and ultimate deliverance into the Messianic Kingdom, the Davidic reign of Christ. It is about the Wrath, the Tribulation, that will last seven years on earth. These nations will be chastened and finally destroyed, though some of the peoples will repent and be saved for the Kingdom.
Unger further points out that there has never been recorded a coalition in the past such as mentioned here in these verses, so the Psalm waits for a future fulfillment. But Unger goes further and says that it is not impossible that this passage could be fulfilled just before the Tribulation, that is, even in our present time! He writes:
Probably its fulfillment will come in some pan-Arabic coalition and attack
on the Israeli State before the church is taken out, or at least before Daniel's seventieth week begins. (Commentary, pp. 866-67)
Interestingly, some of the Rabbis of the past held that Edom was Rome, or the kingdom of Italy. Many have forgotten that about 150 years ago, all of Italy was the kingdom of the Pope. It was his own state, the Papal state. Then a civil war followed and the various kingdoms of the Italian peninsula broke away from the Vatican. That Edom is Rome is a minor view of some of the orthodox Rabbis. On the day of Edom's downfall, the Lord will make war against the nations. When He is victorious, there will come about the resurrection of the dead Old Testament saints in order that they may enter the Messianic Kingdom.
Below is Rabbinical fiction, but it is very interesting:
During this turmoil, the Jews will say to the Arabs, "The temple is ours. Take silver and gold and leave the temple." The Arabs will answer, "You have no right to the temple. Accept our sacrifice and we shall be one people. Accept our faith!" The Jews will answer, "We shall rather slay and be slain, but we shall not deny God!"
The Messiah in the Tribulation will end this conflict; He will say "See the salvation of the Lord!" He will blow upon the Arabs with the breath of His mouth, and all of them will fall dead before Him.
Thanks for asking.
Dr. Mal Couch
Monday, February 16, 2009
|Dr. Couch, thank you for your most excellent and in-depth answers to Bible questions. I need to have things compute. A thorough knowledge of Scripture combined with original language skills, enables you to clear up any confusions. Your resources should be a part of every Bible student's toolbox.|
ANSWER: Thank you for your kind words. I was blessed in graduate school to be thoroughly trained in the biblical languages. However, when I graduated, that institution, and some of the others I attended, started downgrading the training in Hebrew and Greek. I had one recent graduate tell me he could not really exegete the Scriptures because he did not receive enough course work in these languages.
When we lose our exegeses, we will lose our sharpness in doctrine and interpretation. Because the churches no longer want teachers, most of the seminaries are downplaying language training.
But I have learned long ago, that there is no turning things around. This is our generation and it is marching to the drums of the apostasy when strong doctrine will no longer be taught.
Again, thank you for your kind thoughts.
Dr. Mal Couch
Sunday, February 15, 2009
|Dr. Couch, I agree with you as to what is happening today in our world. It is indeed growing more evil and deceitful. Can you give some additional verses of Scripture?|
ANSWER: Isaiah 26:10 is a great verse of Scripture. God "shows favor to the wicked" but His grace and patience rarely changes things. The wicked "does not learn righteousness. He deals unjustly in the land of uprightness." In other words, he destroys what is good. That is what is happening in America, though the righteous cannot simply blame the evil person. We are responsible for our lethargy and our own sins of omission and commission! There are national corporate sins and individual sins. And there are cultural sins. By importing in a wholesale manner other cultures into America, we are weakening our Reformed, European heritage. But again, we are not innocent. We have allowed what is now going on. All individuals are equal before God, but not all cultures are equal.
I should know. I have been in every Central American country and most of Europe, the Middle East, and North Africa. All nations and cultures are not the same!
Every believer in Christ, and many, many people who are not Christians, all see the same things happening. And they are agreeing that we now have a nation divided between those who are conservative and want to hold on to strong principles, and those who are leaning to socialism. One European who came to the States recently said, "I'm from Europe and America has now moved into European socialism."
Isaiah 26:10 closes with: "The wicked does not perceive the majesty of the Lord." He just does not get it! The wicked does not understand God and will destroy the nation in which he resides, and that is attempting to honor Him!
Psalm 7:11 points out that God is a righteous Judge, "and a God who has indignation every day" against evil. But His grace is held back for a time. And then His wrath falls upon that evil nation. Even though we are in the dispensation of grace, God still brings judgment upon the world. This is why there are wars and judgments that fall upon the evil countries of the world. It is now building up on America. We are starting to get ours! It will finally tumble in upon us in a rush. It has already begun! One can hear the rumbling as we get closer to the abyss!
Thanks for asking.
Dr. Mal Couch
Saturday, February 14, 2009
|Dr. Couch, if the Jews were expecting the Messiah based on Daniel's Seventy-Week timeline found in Daniel 9, how could they reject Jesus?|
ANSWER: Good question. But it must be remembered that not all the Jews were looking for His coming. And, I'm quick to point out that they were looking for "the season" of His appearance. Only the pious and Godly Jews were looking for His arrival and the promised Kingdom. They did not know the exact time of His coming, but I believe that some, not all, the Rabbis has done some basic calculations and felt that the Kingdom period was close.
I'm basing this on the Gospel of Luke. It is said that Simeon "was a righteous man and devout, looking for the consolation (the Kingdom) of Israel, and the Holy Spirit was upon him" (Luke 2:25). Also, Anna (was among) "all those who were looking for the redemption of Jerusalem" (v. 38). The only indication they could have would be a calculation of Daniel's Seventy Week prophecy. Since ancient people did not have detailed calendars, they would have to estimate some of the facts from that prophecy. They could not be absolute in their figuring.
To accept the Lord was a spiritual matter. Never mind what they could have calculated. Only the Godly would have been ready for His appearance. We read the Jewish leadership said "If we let Him go on like this [in His miracles], all men will believe in Him, and the Romans will come and take away both our place and our nation" (John 11:48).
Thanks for asking.
Dr. Mal Couch
|Dr. Couch, what is your understanding of 1 Timothy 4:10, where Paul says that God is the Savior of all men, especially of believers?|
ANSWER: This verse, along with about eight other passages, destroys the hard Calvinists' doctrine of Limited Atonement. Christ died for all but His sacrifice is applied only to the elect. The Limited Atonement guys say He died only for the elect.
The verse reads: "We have fixed our hope on the living God, who is the Savior of all men, especially of believers." Christ's sacrifice is sufficient for all but applied only to the elect. All men can not, and will not, come to Him as Savior. This is the doctrine of Total Depravity. No one by himself can come to Him. And only the elect are drawn to Him in a sovereign way.
The word especially is the Greek word malista which should be translated "particularly, most of all, above all." Alford writes: "His will is that all men should be saved, and He has made full and sufficient provision for the salvation of all; so that, as far as salvation stands in Him, He is the Savior of all men. And it is in virtue of this … salvation offered by God, that we have rested our hopes on Him and become saved, especially them that believe, God has provided, become actual, He is the same Savior towards all; but these alone who believe appropriate His salvation." This is of course done by His sovereign election.
Thanks for asking.
Dr. Mal Couch
Friday, February 13, 2009
|Dr. Couch, there seems to be a difference in the land promised to the Jews for the Kingdom, from Genesis 15:18 and Ezekiel 47:18. In Genesis, the extent of the land goes "from the river of Egypt as far as the great river, the river Euphrates." But in Ezekiel, it only mentions "the land of Israel, shall be [to] the Jordan. … This is the east side." Why the difference?|
ANSWER: The full extent of the land runs all the way to the Euphrates river in present day Iraq. But notice what is going on in Ezekiel 47:13-23!
The issue in Ezekiel is the inheritance of the "occupied" area during the 1,000 year Kingdom reign. The occupied land area just goes out to the Jordan to the east. It is the "inheritance" to live on. It is for the "occupied boundary" that would be inhabited during the Kingdom reign! It is to be "measured" out to the north, south, east, and west ("to the eastern sea": the Mediterranean).
It is this portion, over to the Jordan river, that is "divided by lot for an inheritance among yourselves and among the strangers who stay in your midst, who bring forth sons in your midst." These strangers (Gentiles) or foreigners "shall be allotted an inheritance with you among the tribes of Israel" (v. 22).
The majority of the Kingdom population will reside in the core of the land, that just goes over to the Jordan river, though the full territory designated the Kingdom land will be all the way over to the Euphrates.
An illustration: I live in the country on an acre and a half piece of property. But our house and yard are confined to just about one third of that space. We do not mow or garden on the front one acre. Our entire land is just one and a half acres but we only live on a third of that!
I hope this helps. Thanks for asking.
Dr. Mal Couch
Thursday, February 12, 2009
|Dr. Couch: I understand there is a different translation on the word "Friend" in Matthew 26:50. What does the word mean?|
ANSWER: Judas brought the Jews to the Garden of Gethsemane in order to arrest Christ while He was there with the other eleven to pray with Him. When he came up to the Lord and said "Hail, Rabbi" and kissed Him, Jesus said to him, "Friend, do what you have come for." The word friend is not a good word to use. It is not the Greek word phileo. The word is hetairos. And though it is translated as friend, this is not the best rendering. The word is used only in Matthew: 11:16; 20:13; 22:12; 26:50.
The better translation is "comrade, mate, partner, fellow." Judas was part of the contingency of the apostles who were to witness or confirm who Christ was, but he did not have fellowship with Him as one who was close and intimate in the spiritual work of the Lord. From the very beginning he was a turncoat and one who would betray Jesus.
Judas' betrayal was even prophesied in Psalm 41:9: "Even my close friend, in whom I trusted, who ate my bread, has lifted up his heel against me." "Close friend" is not a good translation either. It is better translated "the man of my peace." It is a strong idiomatic expression in Hebrew for the man with whom I was at peace. And this is true of Judas. Alexander notes that "Our Lord applies this verse expressly to Himself and Judas (John 13:18), which shows that Judas was really included in the class to which the psalm relates." But Judas with his betrayal would kick at Christ with his heel in turning his back against the Lord.
Thanks for asking.
Dr. Mal Couch
Tuesday, February 10, 2009
|Dr. Couch: Enclosed is my year's support for the yearly Gathering Storm CD. In our church library I'm placing your CDs when I am finished with them. They are used by visiting missionaries to borrow also. You now have worldwide coverage! Keep on punching holes in the devil's ever-increasing fog of delusion! – For Jesus' sake!|
Dr. Couch: Thank you for all the great information! – website reader
Dr. Couch: I've wanted to let you know how much we appreciate your timely biblical messages that cut through the fog of our humanistic culture today. Keep up the good work! I've enclosed a small amount to keep your wheels turning! – Press on!
Dr. Couch: Please keep the Gathering Storm CD coming! Enclosed is a donation! – Idaho
Dr. Couch: I've passed out ten of your new book "For The Cause Of Zion". I couldn't put it down! Another friend thinks it is outstanding. Everything you write is right on! We are moving to the edge of the abyss, as you put it. And as you have said, I do not believe we will ever see a "conservative" Republican Congress again in Washington. The forces of evil and liberalism has now split this nation with two citizenships. Those who want all the socialist give-aways, and those who understand what real freedom is all about. Christians need to hold on to their hats! Only the gospel will change the hearts and minds of our citizens! – Texas
Please join Dr. Couch and the Clifton Bible Church's study of the book of 1st Corinthians, John, and 2nd Thessalonians. These are the newest audio files now available:
1 Corinthians 13
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2 Thessalonians 2
1 Corinthians 13
1 Corinthians 14
1 Corinthians 15
1 Corinthians 15 (Part Two)
2 Thessalonians 2
Monday, February 9, 2009
| Someone just sent me a series of photos of punk rockers mutilating and cutting their bodies, and stretching their lips and ears with cans and other objects. The pictures are so gross I would not share them with anyone else.|
I have been around the world and visited backward places (Africa, South America, etc.) where terrible things like this were happening. I saw people who, without a doubt, were demon possessed! There is no question that those in these pictures are demon possessed. I have never seen anything like this in the U.S. before. In other words, such possession is now with us in this country! Besides the mutilation, the eyes of the kids in these pictures were glazed over from drug usage. They were the personification of evil. We have arrived, and there is no where else to go but down!
I could not help but think of Leviticus 19:28 and 21:5. God told Moses that Israel "shall not make any cuts in your body for the dead, nor make any tattoo marks on yourselves: I am the Lord" (19:28). Then He added, "You shall not make any cuts in your flesh" (21:5). While some of such verses are aimed at the priesthood, never mind, no one is to defile himself in such a manner.
We are there! We have arrived. The cultural apostasy is here!
-- Dr. Mal Couch
Sunday, February 8, 2009
|Dr. Couch, I know you've been doing a series on awards. What about 2 Timothy 4:8?|
ANSWER: Yes, that's a great passage. Below is a translation of it that really brings forth what Paul is talking about in terms of awards.
Finally, there is right now (presently) laying up for me the crown (stephanos) of righteousness (how I lived rightly) which the Lord, the Righteous Judge, will (in the future) give forth (award) to me, on that day, yet not only to me, but to all the ones who have been loving (Perfect Tense) the appearance (the coming manifestation) of Him.
God already has the crown prepared, laid up, that has to do with how we live the Christian life. He will in the future bestow it upon us! It will reflect how we have been, in an ongoing process, loving Him. And that loving produces in us a desire to live rightly for His sake. If we have not been going through our walk progressively loving Him and the fact of His return, we will not be desiring to do what He says! The appearance has to do with His coming for His own—the rapture of the church saints up to meet Him in the clouds, in the air, just prior to the wrath that falls upon a wicked and wayward world.
This is a powerful passage!
Thanks for asking.
Dr. Mal Couch
Saturday, February 7, 2009
| I just received in the mail a six page, four-color brochure on a Christian counseling center, that is sponsoring a weekend retreat, which is eaten up with secular psychology and contemporary feel-good language! The brochure uses such expressions as:|
Self Worth, Surviving Sexual Abuse, Post-Abortive Healing, Healing Path, To Connect With, Your Journey, Healing and Change, Creating Boundaries, Breaking Through Layers of Hurt, Step out of your Comfort Zone, etc.
And then the ultimate of promises: "Become the Miracle," "A weekend that will CHANGE YOUR LIFE FOREVER!"
Now the surprise! Christ is mentioned no where in the brochure. God is mentioned only three times, but actually only twice, because He is mentioned two times in the same sentence! Where did the Lord go? How is He involved in this so-called process of "healing" the brochure advertises?
Of course, all of the advertising pictures of people in this publication are smiling like crazy! They are receiving instant help and immediate change! The only word in the brochure that may reflect something about the Word of God, is the one use of the term Forgiveness. Otherwise, you would not think this seminar is sponsored by a Christian organization.
Secular psychology puts emotional and spiritual issues in the same box along with the same need for physical healing. You really have a spiritual disease! You can be cured by psychological methods and manipulation. The Word of God is secondary to the process of growing up and maturing spiritually.
The folks who are behind this organization are more than likely integrationists. One of the "big" seminaries in the Dallas/Ft. Worth area has courses that they claim "integrates" psychological methods and the Bible to bring about "healing." They use the expression of "spoiling the Egyptians." That is, as Moses left Egypt with the riches of the Egyptians, so Christians can use secular psychological principles borrowed or taken from the world. This is a misleading and foolish comparison. God is not telling us to use worldly "spiritual" principles and mix them with the spiritual principles of His Word in order to receive spiritual healing!
We are not going to stop such false teaching in our churches. Secular psychology is rampant in our schools, and a new generation just does not understand what the differences are about! There is no hope. We are not going to turn things around. The apostasy just marches forward without any stopping!
-- Dr. Mal Couch
Friday, February 6, 2009
| Dick Morris in the January 20 issue of Human Events, writes: "We enter Obama's administration as free enterprise, market-dominated, laissez-faire America. We will shortly become like Germany, France, Britain, or Sweden—a social democracy in which the government dominates the economy, determines private-sector priorities and offers a vastly expanded range of services to many more people and much higher taxes.|
Obama will accomplish his agenda of "reform" under the rubric of "recovery." Using the electoral mandate bestowed on a Democratic Congress by restless voters and the economic power given his administration by terrified Americans, he will change our country fundamentally in the name of "lifting the depression." His stimulus package won't do much to shorten the downturn—although they will make it less painful—but they will do a great deal to change our nation." – Dick Morris
In many ways, we cannot blame Obama for what is happening. It was mainly the younger, liberal crowd that put him into office, those who have been trained in our social-agenda, liberal public schools. These institutions, from first grade through the government run state universities, propagate inclusivism, and almost downright communism. Morally, our schools are spiritually and morally bankrupt. In teacher training schools, little kids in kindergarten are taken to the same bathrooms where they do their business openly before the other kids. The teachers being trained are told this is alright! In some universities, there are now not just coed dorms but coed rooms available for the students! While all of this was beginning to happen, the Christian community said nothing. The only excuse is that, often we did not know what was happening until it was too late!
The younger crowd, even some who claim to be Evangelical Christians, now see no problem with abortion nor homosexuality. They are bringing into our churches the gospel of Green because we "must save the planet!" We are the pilots of our own destiny. There is no God!
There is no turning back. We are into the prophesied apostasy! – Dr. Mal Couch
Thursday, February 5, 2009
| Everyone sees it but no one can stop it! America is rapidly moving into a form of slavery! We are marching to socialism, a system that denies freedom to the individual and removes God from the equation. Europe, and Nazi Germany, was already wading deep in socialism, in the 1930s. And this became part of the trap that killed thousands and thousands of Jews in the middle of World War II.|
In 1941, thousands of poor Jews were herded into the old fortress city of Theresienstadt, Czechoslovakia. They were told they were going to a comfortable resort to escape the ravages of the war that was coming on Germany. The Czechs were driven out of the town, and the Jews were jammed by the thousands into the apartments that were vacated by the Czechs. It quickly became a horrible nightmare. Dozens were crammed into small rooms with sewage backing up and water running out. They began to die by the thousands. They could at least go outside in the town's parks and sleep in the open when the weather was warm.
But Hitler wanted to trap all the Jews of Germany. He made a social contract with the wealthy Jews who still had bank accounts and property. He would give to them full social benefits if they signed over to the state all their finances and property. They would receive free housing, free medical care, all the food and provisions they needed. While it may be that they had no choice, nevertheless, they all signed up to allow the state full control of their lives. These remaining rich Jews would join the poor Jews who had been shipped to Theresienstadt.
Carrying only one bag, they were herded on trains and joined the other Jews in the city "prison camp" of the town of Theresienstadt. Instantly, they realized they had been fooled and were trapped in this transit city while on the way to other death camps. They had been promised a comfortable life in the "Reich Home" for the aged. In reality, the Jews were hoodwinked into signing over their properties and assets to the evil Nazi S.S. organization that would soon be shipping them east to the crematoriums.
But to mask their sinister intentions, the Nazis developed the city into a "show camp" to show the world how well the Jews were being treated. Danish and Red Cross camera crews were allowed into the town in order to document the kindness in the way the Jews were being cared for. They were shown as "vacationing" around the swimming pool, doing light work, and establishing clubs and music groups. Often when the cameras were stopped, the Jews right then were herded onto trains and taken directly to the death camps!
Theresienstadt became the symbol for the ultimate of blinding a people to the most sinister of government manipulation and socialism. Once a people believes their salvation is in the government, they lose their freedoms. – Dr. Mal Couch
Wednesday, February 4, 2009
| At the President's inauguration, Rick Warren prayed but said nothing about Christ as part of the closing in his benediction, lest anyone was offended! The homosexual Episcopal bishop Gene Robinson, merely prayed in the name of "the God of many understandings." The atheists got a mention. Obama described America as "a nation of Christians and Muslims, Jews and Hindus—and nonbelievers." This pleased the atheists who are trying to organize themselves into something of a new denomination!|
One of the Muslim speakers at an inaugural prayer meeting is sought after by federal prosecutors as having ties to Hamas, the Palestinian terrorists.
No one blinked or complained at this drastic change in our traditions that have sustained America as being founded as a Christian nation, mainly European, Protestant, Reformation, in its makeup. That is now all gone, buried, and forgotten. Especially among our young people who have been brainwashed by going through our socialistic, federally-controlled public schools. There will be no return! Our nation is divided between the younger folks who have a completely new mind-set and want to keep it as it is—thank you very much! –Dr. Mal Couch
Tuesday, February 3, 2009
| Conservatism has its roots in the principles laid out in Scripture. At the base, conservatism clings to eternal rules and principles. Morality is always the same—what is right does not change. And what is right really does not come from the soul of humanity but from the laws of God. While conservatives can slip and fall, there is always something firm to go back to. The conservative confesses, apologizes, and returns to the ever tried-and-true directives laid out in the Bible.|
That is all now put to rest. The conservative Republican Party will never again be in power. The mind-set of the younger American has been changed. The illegal foreigners got to America illegally in order to receive the American bounty without labor. They know how their bread was buttered—by the Democratic Party. Socialism is going to give them everything they need and want—at no charge to them, thank you, but paid for by others who work hard and believe in the eternal principles of right and wrong!
The apostle Paul laid out the seeds of democracy many generations ago when he wrote:
Follow our example. We did not act in an undisciplined manner among you, nor did we eat anyone's bread, without paying for it, but with labor and hardship we kept working night and day so that we might not be a burden to any of you. … If anyone will not work, neither let him eat. … We exhort [them] in the Lord Jesus Christ to work in quiet fashion and eat their own bread" (2 Thess. 3:6-12).
Though this command was stated for the Christian community, the principle is the same for what one would do in the culture!
America has turned the corner into socialism, just as Europe did many decades ago. In the so-called free bailout now being forced upon the nation by the socialistic Democratic Congress, they have included millions of dollars going to free contraceptives, mainly to be given out to the illegal foreigners and minorities. In other words, morality is no longer controlled by the individual but by the government. And the government is going to open the door for many, many more to live immorally but not to have to face their own consequences. Medicaid free-bees will be increased, which means that the people who earn less will now have more free amenities and free health care. This will blunt personal responsibility and give such folks a free ride without sacrifice and work. No more will Americans be required to struggle and fight for what they need and want. It is all guaranteed by the government!
And again, as a reminder, those who are getting the free ride will all vote for the Democratic Party that provided it all. So long, Republican Party! Hello, American socialism! –Dr. Mal Couch
Monday, February 2, 2009
| While in America, only 9 percent of the population look on Jews unfavorably, that figure has reached 46 percent in Europe, and growing. The Muslim population in European countries is larger and more radical. (In France, 10 percent of the people are Muslim and Arab.) In Spain, the figure before 2005 was only about half that figure, around 25 percent who hated the Jewish population. Now it is the same as in the rest of Europe, 46 percent.|
Several weeks ago, the largest anti-Israeli rally was held in Spain, organized by the Socialist Workers party. In Barcelona, demonstrators burned an Israeli flag with a swastika in place of the Star of David. The Star of David is the emblem for Jesus, Israel's Messiah! Synagogues as well as Jewish homes in Britain, France, Belgium and Scandinavia, have been firebombed. In Denmark, children have been refused enrollment in some schools for fear of Muslim retaliation.
There are 17 million Muslims in Europe over against only 1.8 million Jews. Today, the Jewish people in both Europe and in Israel are far from perfect. They are taking on the mores and the cultural sins of the Gentile world. Nevertheless, they are God's earthly people whom He loves and is regathering back to the Holy Land. Their eyes are yet blinded but someday they will be opened. In fact, they are now coming to Christ, some 15,000 in Israel alone. Remember what Paul said, "From the standpoint of the gospel they [the Jewish people] are enemies for your sake [you Gentiles], but from the standpoint of God's election (choosing) they are beloved for the sake of the fathers [Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob], for the gifts and the calling of God are unchangeable [irrevocable]" (Rom. 11:28-29). --Dr. Mal Couch
P.S. Is it not interesting how little of this persecution we hear about in America? Our news media just does not care!