KHCB Broadcast – Pastor’s Q & A – May 25, 2023• Dr. Andy Woods • May 25, 2023 • KHCB Radio
KHCB – 05-25-2023 – Full Program Transcript
Announcer: [00:00:09] Good evening. The time is now 9:30 Central time. And we welcome you to our weekly Question and Answers program. A program where you can call us with your questions about the Bible, a scripture or the Christian way of life. Our guests will answer the question for you live on the air. Tonight’s guests are Dr. Andy Woods, Senior Pastor at Sugar Land Bible Church. He’s also president of the Chafer Theological Seminary. The church is located at 401 Matlage Way in Sugar Land, Texas. That’s right off of Highway 6 and Brooks street. Dr. Woods has authored and contributed to many Christian books and theological journals. He speaks on a variety of topics at Christian conferences and churches. He’s joined tonight by Dr. Jim McGowan, Associate pastor of Sugar Land Bible Church.
You can find the church website is SLBC.org and you can also find Pastor Woods and Pastor McGowan on Pastors Point of View on YouTube and Rumble. They discuss current issues and prophecy updates. You can find them on YouTube (PPOV) and Rumble, Andy Woods Ministries.org and Andy Woods Bible Studies. If you’re calling from inside the Houston listening area, you can dial (832) 922-4444. That’s (832) 922-4444. If you’re calling from around the KHCB network outside the Houston area, you can dial (877) 999-5422. That’s (877) 999-5422. Or if you’d rather email your question to us, you can send that to questions. That’s plural Questions@KHCB.org and it will appear on our computer screen here in the studio and we’ll forward it to our guests. We ask that you not mention any denominations or personal names, because our aim tonight is to answer questions relating to the Bible. And now to get us started, here are our guests Dr. Andy Woods and Dr. Jim McGowan.
Pastor Jim: [00:02:37] Welcome once again listening friends. We are indeed very happy and excited to be back in the studio this evening to take your Bible questions. And as always, we will be relying on the Bible for answers, because the Bible is God’s Holy Word and it is the only inspired, authoritative revelation of everlasting truth which contains everything we need for life and godliness. And we’re convinced that God wants to speak to you personally through His word. So when you call in to share your question, expect to hear from Him. And then be sure to remember to praise and thank Him for the answers that he provides. And keep in mind, as we go to the phones this evening here momentarily, that we do have three on-air directives. First of all, please keep your on air time to one question only. Please remember also to turn your volume down before we bring you on the air. And finally, please remember also that once you’ve shared your question, go ahead and hang up and listen for the answer, because that frees up a line for those who might be wanting to call in. We do appreciate your cooperation in that regard. Now, just before we go to our phones, I do want to pick up on a question that came in in our last session. There was an individual that called in and was asking about the passage in Ecclesiastes. He couldn’t find it and he wanted to know where this passage was. It had to do with the death of men and animals. And I took the time to go look that up off air. And the verse is Ecclesiastes 3:19. So, if you’re listening this evening, write that down. Ecclesiastes 3:19. I hope that helps you out. I want to make sure that we followed through. We said we would do it and now we’ve done it. So there you are. Anyway, praise the Lord. All right. I see we have two callers waiting, so let’s not waste any more time. Let’s go to the phones. Thank you so much for calling the program this evening. What is your Bible question for Doctor Woods?
Caller: [00:04:29] Good evening. The action about the Grace Dispensation. When does that basically end and when does the Kingdom Age start? Because I’m looking at that number in Revelation. I think it’s 6 where there’s a number that no man can number. And I understand they are the people that came through the Great Tribulation. Is that group, those that are part of the Grace Dispensation up until the Kingdom Age or just when does the Kingdom Age begin and when the Grace Dispensation end? That’s my question.
Pastor Jim: [00:04:57] All right. That’s an excellent question, Pastor.
Pastor Andy: [00:05:00] All right. Well, just kind of as a side note, I’ve never been very content with the expression Grace Dispensation because it kind of gives the impression that, you know, only our age is the age of grace. No one else ever had grace in the whole Bible. But you go back to Genesis 6 and you’ll learn that Noah, you know, I think it’s around verse 9, found grace in the eyes of the Lord. So Grace, I mean, Adam and Eve were clothed with animal skins that God, I believe, killed an animal right there on the spot and clothed Adam and Eve. So they received grace, you know, at the very beginning of the Bible. So probably a better expression is the Church Age, the unique man that we are in now called the Body of Christ. And that’s something that started in Acts Chapter 2 and would extend all the way till the Rapture. So the moment the rapture happens, the Church Age officially is over at that point. And the earthly ministry of the church at that point is over. So what follows after that is, I think, a well, remember, Daniel in the age of law was given a clock. It had 490 years on it. We believe 483 of those 490 years have expired, leaving 7 years. And so I think that seven year tribulation period is a seven year completion of the age of the law. And that’s where those folks in Revelation 6, I think he was talking about, are saved. So they’re not part of the Church Age, but they’re saved by grace in that missing seven years in the age of the law. And then Jesus at the end of that 7 year time period will return to the Earth physically and visibly. We’re not talking about the Rapture anymore. We’re talking about the bodily return of Christ at the end of the tribulation period, and then that’s in Revelation 19. And then what follows is his thousand year kingdom. So that’s when the Kingdom Age starts after the seven year tribulation is over. So I hope that clarifies a little bit.
Pastor Jim: [00:07:16] Yeah, there’s a lot of confusion on this issue, isn’t there, Pastor? So you’ve done a lot of excellent teaching. I know you have a series on the on the Book of Revelation. You have a series on the book of Daniel, and I would encourage our callers to maybe go to our website and check out the archives.
Pastor Andy: [00:07:32] Yeah. Thank you. Yeah.
Pastor Jim: [00:07:34] All right. Very good. Let’s go back to the phones. Thank you so much for waiting and calling the program this evening. Okay. I’m sorry that it should be slbc.org for the website and then you can just go to the Sermon Archives there on the web page and find that material. Thank you so much, brother, for clarifying that for us. Okay, now back to the phones we go. Thank you for waiting. What is your Bible question this evening?
Caller: [00:08:03] Hi, good evening. I just have a question regarding 2nd Thessalonians, I believe verse 2 through chapter 2, verses 6 and 7. But I’m mistaken. I’m sorry, I don’t have the Bible with me, but it’s regarding the restrainer. I know, I heard. I have heard so many interpretations saying that the restrainer is, some people would say it’s an angel. I heard other version says that it’s God. But can you can you guys please clarify me what who is the restrainer and why is it I guess if it’s the Holy Spirit, you know, is there a way we can back it up in the Bible where it specifically says it’s the Holy Spirit? Thank you, guys, and have a good night.
Pastor Jim: [00:08:42] All right. Boy, Pastor, we’re getting some great questions right off the bat here. So who is the restrainer? What’s that all about?
Pastor Andy: [00:08:48] Well, it’s a long debated passage. As he mentioned, some think it’s an angel like Michael the Archangel. That’s a problem, though, because Jude 9 says that Michael the Archangel doesn’t like to contest Satan and this restrainer is holding back Satan. Satan’s man of the hour. Who is the Antichrist? Other people say the restrainer is Satan, but that would cause Satan to fight against his man of the hour, the Antichrist. Jesus said a house divided against itself can’t stand. There are those that say the restraint is Rome, the political power that was in existence when this was written. But Rome is gone and the restraint is still here. Other people say it’s human government. From Romans 13:1 through 7. Human government a restrains evil. But, you know, I think human government can be used as a tremendous source of evil. That’s what the antichrist will do with government. And that’s what Nimrod did at the Tower of Babel. So I think the best explanation is the restrainer is the Holy Spirit. And how do we get that? I mean, it doesn’t say Holy Spirit. Well, the reason it doesn’t say Holy Spirit is because, Paul, in this chapter, just look at the words right before verses 6 and 7, verse 5, Don’t you remember? He says, When I was telling you these things.
Pastor Andy: [00:10:20] In other words, he’s reviewing so he’s not going to lay the foundation anew. So he’s when you review, you know, you use a shorter vocabulary. So I think what he’s doing is he’s identifying the spirit by his ministry. You know, sometimes the Holy Spirit is identified by his ministry. He’s called the spirit of life, the spirit of truth. And here it’s a reference to the spirit of restraint. He’s playing right now a unique role in holding back Satan’s Man of the Hour or the Antichrist, from making his debut on the world stage. And whoever this restrainer is, he’s got to be God because he’s holding back God’s arch-enemy, the devil. So only deity could do that. And that fits the Holy Spirit, the third member, the eternally existent third member of the Godhead. And in Greek, something very, very interesting happens as you look at that participle restrainer, as you move from verse 6 to verse 7, there’s a switch in gender and I believe it switches from the masculine to the neuter. If I have that right, or switches.
Pastor Jim: [00:11:33] From neuter to masculine neuter.
Pastor Andy: [00:11:35] To masculine. Thank you. I’m actually looking at you’re looking at fantastic. That’s the Participle, Restrainer and English. That doesn’t mean much to us, but in the Greek language, it meant everything. And so that’s a wonderful description of the Spirit because sometimes Jesus called the Holy Spirit “He”, you know, he used the personal pronoun “He” to describe the Holy Spirit. And other times the spirit is just called the Spirit, the Greek word there is pneuma, which I think is a neuter noun. So the switch, you know, in gender there would be a wonderful description of the Holy Spirit. So I think the Holy Spirit view has, you know, the fewest problems with it. And we know from John 14, 16 through 18 that the Holy Spirit lives in the child of God, the church age believer forever. And so I think the Holy Spirit is restraining Antichrist right now through the presence of the church on the earth. But one of these days that restraint will be removed, which means the containers in which he indwells will be removed as well. And that becomes an argument for the pre-tribulation rapture of the church. And then Satan’s man of the hour, the Antichrist, who Satan will express himself through, is unleashed on the world stage. It’s important, though, to understand that in the Tribulation Period, the Holy Spirit is still active. Because in the prior call we just learned that many are going to get saved in the tribulation. It’s just his unique ministry of restraint that he’s doing right now in the church age, in between the day of Pentecost and the Rapture, that ministry will end. And so that’s what I think. That’s who I think the restrainer is.
Pastor Jim: [00:13:22] All right. Awesome. Pastor. Well, let me give those phone numbers out. Again, we are looking for some more lines to light up. So if you’re in the local area here, Houston area, it’s 832-922-4444. Again 832-922- 4444 If you’re outside the local area, you can call toll free at 877-999-5422. 877-999-5422. And as our brother Noah mentioned earlier, if you would prefer to send in an email question, you can do so to questions (in the plural) Questions@KHCB.org. Pastor While we’re waiting for the phones to light back up, I have an email that came in and this individual writes, “I believe the Old Testament is just as important as the New Testament. And I’ve been told from different individuals in conversation that they do not read the Old Testament because they are a New Testament church. So the question is, are the Old and New Testament of equal importance? And if so, what do you tell someone that says they are a New Testament church but they don’t believe in the Old Testament?” So, Pastor, how would we handle that?
Pastor Andy: [00:14:36] Okay. The first question: are the Old Testament and the New Testament of equal importance? Um, I would say yes, because when you go to First Timothy 5 and you look at verse 18, it says “for the scripture says, you shall not muzzle the ox while he is threshing”. That’s Deuteronomy 25, verse 4. And here comes the second quotation “The laborer is worthy of his wages”. That’s Luke 10, verse 7. So you notice that Paul puts Deuteronomy Old Testament and Luke New Testament on equal level because he calls them both Scripture. And when you go over to 2nd Peter, chapter 3 and you look at verse 2, it says that you should remember the words spoken beforehand by the Holy prophets. That would be Old Testament prophets. And the commandment of the Lord of the Lord and Savior spoken by your apostles. The Apostles wrote the New Testament. So Peter is saying, you know, pay attention, pay attention to both. And when you go over to that same chapter and you look at verses 15 and 16, it says, “regard the patience of our Lord as to salvation just as our beloved brother Paul, according to the wisdom given to him, wrote to you also in all his letters speaking of things in which some things are hard to understand, which the untaught and the unstable do as they do the rest of the scriptures to their own destruction.”
So there Peter is saying, you know, even though some of the things Paul says are hard for him to understand, not impossible to understand, by the way, but harder, he wrote with divine wisdom. So whether it’s 1st Timothy 5:18, 2nd Peter 3, verse 2, 2nd Peter 3, verses 15 and 16, you’ll see that the New Testament is always taking the Old Testament and the New Testament and calling them both inspired and calling them both Scripture. So if that’s true, then they’re both of equal importance. So the second part of this question is, if so, what do you tell someone that says they’re a New Testament church and does not even want to hear about the Old Testament? Well, what you tell them is 2nd Timothy 3:16, which is the New Testament, and it’s telling pastors what to focus on in the life of the church. And it says there in verse 16, all scripture is inspired by God and profitable.
Pastor Jim: [00:17:33] It says all.
Pastor Andy: [00:17:33] All for teaching reproof, correction for training in righteousness that the man of God may be adequately equipped for every good work. Now, what equips you all Scripture? He doesn’t just say the New Testament. In fact, I think when he made this statement, he was probably referring to the Old Testament. Since the New Testament Canon was just being developed. Had all the New Testament books hadn’t even been written yet. When he said that Book of Revelation probably hadn’t been written yet. The Gospel of John may not have been written yet. The three epistles of John hadn’t been written yet, and we could go right on down the list. And so you can’t make any sense of 2nd Timothy 3:16 if you’re just going to toss out the Old Testament. Now, it is true that the New Testament covers our age. It’s what’s directly binding on us. You know, all scripture is for us, but not all scripture is about us. So I get that point that the New Testament ought to receive priority when you’re trying to figure out what’s normative in the life of the church age Christian today.
Pastor Jim: [00:18:45] Especially the epistles.
Pastor Andy: [00:18:46] Right? Especially the epistles or the letters. But that doesn’t mean you toss out the Old Testament for reasons I’ve already tried to explain. You know, you want to preach Acts 20 verses 26 and 27, the full Council of God’s Word, which would include Old Testament and New Testament, helping people to understand that the Epistles are the section that’s directly binding on us. But that doesn’t mean you camp in the Epistles to the point where you toss out the book of Genesis, Exodus, etcetera. In fact, a lot of the lingo in the New Testament, it’s impossible to understand unless you have a knowledge of the Old Testament.
Pastor Jim: [00:19:30] You know, I was just about to I was just about to say that. So thank you for saying that, Pastor.
Pastor Andy: [00:19:33] Like the word “redemption”. What does that even mean? Well, you have an example of it in the Book of Exodus, where through the blood of the Passover lamb, the nation of Israel was released from 400 years of Egyptian bondage. Well, that becomes a picture of what Jesus has done for us in terms of being that perfect sacrifice for us, who has released us from the bondage of the slave market of sin. So that whole imagery doesn’t make sense without a knowledge of the Book of Exodus. The New Testament actually is not going to re-explain everything. It’s not going to say, okay, here’s what redemption is. Let me map the whole thing out. It’s sort of assuming that you have a prior knowledge of the Old Testament to understand the New Testament. So I hope that helps a little bit.
Pastor Jim: [00:20:20] Awesome. Thank you so much, Pastor. Great answer and what a great question. All right. Let’s go back to the phones. Thank you for taking the time to call the program this evening and for waiting. What is your Bible question for Dr. Woods?
Caller: [00:20:31] Yes, sir. I was trying to find out. There’s two questions between the Major Prophets and the Minor Prophets. And the second question is, is that what is your favorite book between the Major Prophets and the Minor Prophets?
Pastor Jim: [00:20:51] All right. Thank. All right. Thank you so much for calling, Pastor Major versus Minor Prophets, What’s the distinction there? And then what is your favorite?
Pastor Andy: [00:21:00] Well, it’s like the expression the Age of Grace. I personally do not like the expression Major Prophets and Minor Prophets, because when you go to Matthew 23, around verse 34, 35, 36, what you learn is all of the prophets from Able to Zechariah, you know, were mistreated and most of them martyred. And I don’t I don’t plan on getting up into heaven and meeting Haggai and saying, you know, you’re just a minor. You know, you’re a minor prophet.
Pastor Jim: [00:21:36] Get out of the way. I want to see Isaiah.
Pastor Andy: [00:21:37] Yeah, exactly. So, you know, I just find that whole lingo very problematic. I mean, they’re all major as far as I’m concerned. But why do we have this expression, Major and Minor Prophets? It just has to do with how the Protestants have organized what we call Old Testament, right? We take the longer writing prophets and we have we put them first. So you would have, you know, Isaiah, Jeremiah, Ezekiel, Daniel. And then you have some of the smaller prophets, you know, I’m thinking of Zechariah, Malachi, Haggai, Habakkuk, you know, those that are not massive in length, like the, the so called Major Prophets. And we organize them as Minor Prophets in our, you know, organization of the Old Testament. So that’s the only reason we have that distinction. And we need to explain that to people. Because if you don’t explain to people, people will think, well, Isaiah is more important than Malachi which is not true. Which one is my favorite? Well, I used to ask my Professor J. Dwight Pentecost. What’s your favorite book of the Bible? And he said this “Whatever book I’m studying at the moment”. That’s a good answer, whatever I’m teaching through. So, I mean, all of, all of the whole Bible is wonderful. I guess if you’re going to push me on it, I’d pick as my favorite major prophet Ezekiel and probably my favorite so called minor prophet. I guess I would have to pick Zechariah. But if you asked me that same question six months from now, I might say something completely.
Pastor Jim: [00:23:18] Next time we’re on the air, we have a different answer. All right. Thank you for calling the program. We hope that was helpful to you. And let’s go back to the email, shall we? This individual writes “Greetings send these questions on my father’s behalf, sending these questions on my father’s behalf. What is the meaning of the passage in the Book of Job Chapter 20, verse 10, and then the story of the Pool of Bethesda. If God healed when they got in the pool, then this individual wants to know why we’re sick people lying around for years and years”. And so, Pastor?
Pastor Andy: [00:23:53] Okay, well, let’s do the first one here. First, the Book of Job, chapter 20 and verse 10. It says “His son’s favor, the poor and his hands give back wealth”. Now, you have to keep in mind who’s speaking, it’s Zophar. And Zophar here attempts to make to make a suffering Job appear to be a sinning Job because Zophar didn’t have a fully developed understanding of divine suffering. And he thought, well, you know, Job is suffering, there’s obviously sin in his life. And we as the readers of the Book of Job, know that that’s not true. It had to do with the conversation between God and Satan in Heaven that job really didn’t know anything about. And so Zophar basically here is trying to blame Job’s sins on Job and, you know, Job supposedly had acquired riches dishonestly. So that’s what I think the meaning there is in Job chapter 20, verse 10. You want to add something to that?
Pastor Jim: [00:25:07] I was just going to say you know, in that time frame, too, there wasn’t there a sort of a general understanding that people had that when calamity fell upon you, it was because you had been wicked in some way, shape or form.
Pastor Andy: [00:25:20] Sure. And you’re dealing with people. The Job is the first book of the Bible in terms of date of writing. So you’re dealing with people without a complete understanding of God. And so obviously, anybody that suffers must have sin in their life. It’s like the man born blind in John 9, and they’re saying, Well, who sinned Lord, this sinner or his parents, that he be born blind? Well, that’s what Job’s three counselors, you know are. And later, Elihu – four counselors basically are trying to convince job of. So that’s inadequate understanding. Yes, sin does cause suffering, but you can’t blame all suffering on sin. And the Book of Job is a refutation to that very shallow way of thinking. But Zophar, you know, really didn’t get it. The second question here has to do with the pool of Bethesda. If God, what does it say here? The story of the pool of Bethesda says if God healed when they got in the pool. If that’s true, what were the multitudes of sick people doing lying around the pool for years? Well, it actually doesn’t say God healed people. What it says is in John 5, 3 and 4 that an angel supposedly did that. It says “Waiting for the moving of the waters for an angel of the Lord went down at certain seasons into the pool and stirred up the water”. Whoever. Then let’s see whoever then first after the stirring up of the water from whatever disease. Excuse me. I’m reading that wrong. Let me start over with verse 4. “For an angel of the Lord went down at certain seasons into the pool and stirred up the water. Whoever then first, after the stirring up of the water stepped in was made well from whatever disease with which he was afflicted”. So there was apparently some kind of belief that an angel went and stirred the water up and first one in gets healed. Well, I believe that what is being described there is not actually what happened. It’s a superstition. It’s a tradition. It’s a myth that the people at that time believed in. But just because they believed in it, you know, doesn’t make it true. The reason I think this is a myth is because, boy, it sure makes God look cruel if he’s if he’s in control of these angels and, you know, how cruel is it of God to let a guy, you know, a lame man never get into the pool?
Pastor Jim: [00:28:10] As is indicated in the very next verse, The guy had been there 38 years.
Pastor Andy: [00:28:14] Yeah, so it’s just hard for me to believe that this this myth or this superstition, you know, was actually true. I mean, there’s all kinds of superstitions in this world. I mean, a lot of elevators don’t have the number 13 in it, for example. But that doesn’t mean that has any bearing on reality. So something else that’s very important to understand is this is a text critical issue. You’ll notice I’m reading out of the New American Standard Bible that those words that I just read about the angels stirring up the waters, those are in brackets. Here’s a note in my study Bible. It says this phrase and all of verse 4 are not found in some of the manuscripts. So when you start to study this out, you’ll find that no early manuscript contain those words in verses 3 and 4 before 400AD. And so, you know, it’s the authenticity of these verses is in doubt as well. And beyond that it’s not even the point of the passage. I mean, the point of the passage is not about an angel healing anybody. It’s about Jesus finding someone in a totally hopeless condition and healing him accordingly. So here’s a man who was a victim of a superstition of some kind. Perhaps he was a victim of a physical limitation on he was even a victim of sin. Because Jesus says later on, you know, leave your life of sin or something worse will happen to you. I believe it says that later on, does it not? Is that in John 5? Hopefully I’m not merging my stories together. But my point is this man was a victim and Jesus came and healed him. That’s the point. Not to get into a big discussion about, you know, you know, an angel that supposedly stirred up the waters. So I think, A: it’s a superstition. B: there’s a text-critical issue here. And C: let’s not get focused on these verses and forget what the whole paragraph is about.
Pastor Jim: [00:30:26] All right. Well, we hope that was helpful. Thank you so much for calling or actually thank you for emailing your question in. And it’s time for us to take a station break. So if you’ll stand by for a few seconds, we’ll be back with you in just a moment and we’ll have our prayer for the nation. See you on the next side.
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Pastor Jim: [00:31:35] All right. Welcome back to KCB’s Question and Answer program. It’s the top of the hour, so we like to pause and pray for the nation. So if you’re in a position where you can do so safely, would you join us in prayer at this time? Abba Father, we come joyfully to praise you for the free access that you grant us to your throne of grace. And we come with gratitude, knowing that you hear us. You care for us. And you always do what is best, right and perfect for us. We come also to acknowledge that all your works are true and all your ways are just, and that as your children, we are beneficiaries of your unfathomable love, which is super, abundantly and eternally showered upon us. We thank you also for our Founding Fathers and for our Republic and the Constitution upon which our Nation was formed. We come in obedience to pray for all who are in authority so that we might lead a tranquil and quiet life in all godliness and dignity. As we’re told in 1st Timothy 2:2. We lift up our leaders local, state and federal and ask that you might lead and motivate them to seek out wise and godly counsel, to walk in humility and integrity and to set aside personal agendas and aspirations. Please, Father, encourage them to be honest, morally upright, and to work for the benefit of the people as true servant leaders. We also ask you to come alongside the true believers serving in our government and encourage them to seek the wisdom that comes from above, as we’re told in James 3:17 And to remember also that they are ambassadors for Christ first, according to second Corinthians 5:20 and servants of the people second.
Pastor Jim: [00:33:37] We plead for the salvation of the unbelievers serving in our government that they might respond to the offer of eternal life through Jesus Christ. Abba Father, please also protect all of our first responders, law enforcement officers, our firemen and women, EMTs, doctors and nurses, the men and women faithfully serving in our military. And please keep them from hurt, harm and danger. Abba Father, please encourage the body of Christ, your children, to be salt and light and faithful witnesses to those who are lost, those who are dying all around us so that the lost might come to place their faith, their confidence and their trust in your beloved son Jesus, your one and only provision for the eternal safekeeping of their soul. And finally, Abba Father, help us to continue to develop and consistently exhibit Christ likeness in our attitudes and our actions, and to remember that believers are called to faithfully represent you until we are united with you through death or the glorious appearing of our great God and Savior Jesus Christ. And these things we pray in the name of Jesus, Maranatha and Amen. Thank you so much for praying with us. And now let’s go back to the phones. Thank you for waiting. What is your Bible question for Doctor Woods this evening? Yes, this is me. Yes, go right ahead.
Caller: [00:35:19] Fantastic. Actually, this is man, this is a bad idea. I’m here to tell you I could I could stay up all night with questions for you and pepper you. But let’s do a couple of questions on marriage, if I might. The one question in, I guess in terms of unequally yoked, maybe a slightly, slightly softer deal, perhaps if the one person, in terms of in terms of considering whether or not you should get married, if the one person is caught up in the Kenneth Hagen theology and the other person is not. Say the other person is reformed, is that unequally yoked? That’s one question. The other question is, in reading the Bible through, there is a – Paul seems to contradict himself in several different passages and I don’t have them off the top of my head, but I could find them pretty quickly but in several different passages in marriage, He seems to say in some places, do not get married. You know, I would that you were not married. But then in other places he says you should get married. Marriage is great. Marriage is honorable. Marriage is, you know, especially a younger woman. Younger women should get married as opposed to, you know, getting in trouble. So, how do you reconcile those differing exhortations, if you will, from Paul? And thank you very much for this for this program.
Pastor Jim: [00:37:05] All right. Thank you so much for calling the program and thank you so much for your questions. Pastor, what do we do with this issue of unequally yoked when people have theological differences?
Pastor Andy: [00:37:16] Well, you know, the whole idea of unequally yoked comes from 2nd Corinthians 6. I think it is verses 14 through 16. And it really was like a harness, if you will, put over two animals. And if the animals had unequal strength, then the stronger one would influence the weaker one. So what he’s saying is when you get into a relationship with someone, and we typically apply this to marriage, but it could refer to any other kind of intimate relationship, business partnership, perhaps, things like that. You know, you don’t want to put yourself in a situation where the other person has values, you know, that you may not share biblically. Because basically what’s going to happen is you’re going to go into that relationship thinking you can change them, but they’re going to probably end up changing you more than you’re going to end up changing them. So I’m thinking of Lot who went into Sodom and Gomorrah probably with the best intentions. But when all is said and done, it was Sodom that really got into Lot at the end of the day. And to the point where the Angels had to drag him out, you know, before he could destroy the place. So the story of Lot really is a wonderful example of what it’s like to be unequally yoked. And, you know, that’s the principle. How do you apply that? Well, you wouldn’t marry an unbeliever. I would also say, given what Paul says about carnal Christianity, if you’re the more of a spiritual Christian, you would not marry a carnal Christian. To me, if someone is wrapped up in Word of Faith theology, that shows an extremely low level of understanding of the Bible, it shows me that the person probably is not as mature as the other person. So to me, that’s a major red flag in terms of not marrying somebody so well.
Pastor Jim: [00:39:18] And the example that he gave, he mentioned, you know, someone that’s from a Word Faith background and someone from a Reformed background. And I’m not so sure you could get to two more opposite individuals coming together. I don’t see how that would be workable.
Pastor Andy: [00:39:36] And you’re just going to be at loggerheads constantly, you know, where are we going to go to church? What ministries are we going to support? I mean, you can just see the conflict and how are you going to raise your children? How are you going to raise your children? So to me, the general principle of being not being unequally yoked, it’s a lot bigger than just don’t marry an unbeliever. That’s typically the teaching we get on it. But it’s deeper than that. And so that’s my best I can do on that one. Now, it is true. Getting to his second question in First Corinthians chapter 7, that the Apostle Paul did say that marriage is problematic. And that goes back to Genesis chapter 3, where, you know, God basically said because Adam and Eve sinned, they’re going to have difficulty and they’re going to have conflict in their marriage. He describes there in Genesis 3, kind of a power struggle. So Paul says, you know, I’m free of the power struggle because I’m not married. But he says not everybody can do that. In fact, that’s a gifting, you know, celibacy, that is a very rare spiritual gift. And so most people need to be married. After all, in Genesis 2, even before sin entered the world, God said, it’s not good for man to be alone, so I’ll make a helper for him. So there are many, many benefits of marriage. So Paul is not anti-marriage. What he’s saying, though, is if you do get married because of man’s and woman’s fallen state, there’s going to be an in-built power struggle.
Pastor Andy: [00:41:13] You see that power struggle described in Genesis chapter 3, where it talks there about how, it’s around verse 16, I believe it is Genesis chapter three, verse 16, to the second part of the verse, speaking to the woman. “Yet your desire shall be for your husband and he shall rule over you”. In Hebrew, that sentence is identical to a sentence in the next chapter – Genesis 4:7 concerning Cain contemplating murder. It says in Genesis 4:7, “If you do well, will not your countenance be lifted up? If you do not do well, Sin is crouching at the door and its desire is for you. But you must master it”. So Cain, you better control anger before it controls you. And so that same idea is going to happen within marriage. The woman is going to naturally try to usurp the place of leadership within the marriage, and the man won’t like it and he’ll fight back. And that’s the beginning of chauvinism and feminism. Let the battle of the sexes begin. And that’s what Paul’s talking about in First Corinthians 7, that those in this life would get married are going to have some problems because of our sin nature. But he’s not erasing marriage. He still says marriage is honorable. Marriage is to be respected. That’s the Biblical position. Jesus course performed his first public miracle at a marriage, a wedding in Cana of Galilee. So, I would not see Paul contradicting himself. Marriage is difficult, but he’s not anti-marriage at all. Marriage has some wonderful benefits and it’s God.
Pastor Jim: [00:43:01] And it’s a divine institution. It’s an institution. Yeah. Yeah. Amen. All right. Well, we hope that was helpful for you. Thank you so much for calling. And back to the phones we go. Thank you for waiting. What is your Bible question for Dr. Woods this evening? Hi, caller Are you there? I’m not getting anybody here. All right. Well, I’ll tell you what. Let’s go to an email question while we try to figure that out. All right. So here’s a question. “Are we really given power over other men’s sins or is this a reference to when others sin against us, as in the Lord’s Prayer, which says forgive us our sins as we forgive others who sin against us”? All right.
Pastor Andy: [00:43:54] All right. So that’s a question from John 20 and verse 23. Let me just flip over there real quick, John. 20 and verse 23, you actually just read it. But Jesus here is speaking. If you forgive the sins of any, their sins have been forgiven them. If you retain the sins of any, then they have been retained. The truth of the matter, though, is when you look at this verse against the whole counsel of God’s Word, since only God forgives sins and the rest of the question quotes John 9. I think it is to that effect. You can jot down Mark chapter 2, verse 7 “only God forgives sins”. Since only God can forgive sins, the disciples and the church are here given the authority to declare what God does when a man either accepts or rejects his son. Now, that’s a note from my Ryrie study Bible, and I think that just about covers it. The authority of the church comes from declaring what God has already declared. So if a person has trusted in Christ, then you can say, you know what, based on your decision, your sins have been forgiven. If a person rejects Christ, then you can say, okay, based on your decision, your sins have not been forgiven. But it’s not me, you know? Forgiving or not forgiving sins, that’s a prerogative that belongs only to God. It’s me declaring what God has already said in relation to the forgiveness of sins.
Pastor Jim: [00:45:44] All right, Pastor, we did have a caller that did not want to come on the air, but their question was, if they were involved in a prosperity church, should they leave? That’s the question.
Pastor Andy: [00:46:04] Well, how am I going to answer that? A lot of different ways. I guess the prosperity gospel is errant at its core. And the doctrine is much worse than simply believing that God wants us all rich and healthy. I mean, that obviously is not true because you look at the Macedonians in 2nd Corinthians 8 and 9, they’re praised and yet they were extremely poor. Jesus praises the church at Smyrna. You know, he says, you know, commenting on their poverty in Revelation 2, I want to say around verse 9, right in there, though, you’re poor, you’re rich. So this idea that godliness is equated with prosperity is not Biblical. I’m not against prosperity if God gives it to you. But the truth of the matter is, you shouldn’t always draw a direct relationship between piety and prosperity. And you shouldn’t tell people that healing is guaranteed in the atonement because it’s not this side of eternity. And I could show you in the Bible where Paul, in the book of Galatians around chapter 4, suffered from frequent illnesses. And he told young Timothy in the Timothy letters to take a little wine for his upset stomach and frequent ailments. And in 2nd Timothy chapter 4, he talked about how he I forgot the gentleman’s name. Was it.
Pastor Jim: [00:47:36] Trophimus or was it.
Pastor Andy: [00:47:37] Yeah, there it is. Trophimus. I left sick at Miletus and you’ll see that in 2nd Timothy for I want to say around verse 13 but right in that general time or area of scripture. So obviously you can’t draw a connect relationship, correct? A direct relationship between piety and prosperity, piety and health. It just doesn’t work that way all the time. So that’s why the whole prosperity movement is wrong. And there’s even a bigger problem with it than that is lurking behind the scenes of what I just described is a major heresy called the Little Gods doctrine. And yes, you are a little God, the prosperity teachers say, and therefore you are entitled to a life of health and wealth and you have to speak it into existence because it’s your right. And if you’re not experiencing those things, you know, like Joni Eareckson Tada, who’s in a wheelchair, you know why she’s in the wheelchair? According to the prosperity gospel, it’s her fault. It’s her lack of confession or her lack of faith or sin. So Joni Eareckson Tada has to go through life confined to a wheelchair. And if she were involved in prosperity gospel, having someone come alongside of her and pour on her double jeopardy, heap on her a bunch of condemnation. That’s why this prosperity gospel is wicked at its core.
Pastor Andy: [00:49:10] And we’re not little gods. That’s the lie that Satan tried to sell Eve on Genesis chapter 3, verse 5. Thinking you’re a God is what Satan deceived himself with. That’s why he lost his position in heaven. Isaiah 14:12 through 15. So, I’m of the opinion that this prosperity movement is one of the most demonic, satanic, diabolical teachings that has ever been foisted on the body of Christ. So since I believe all of that, my answer is if you’re in a church that’s teaching that nonsense, do not walk, but run to the nearest exit. Assuming you’re healthy enough to do that, you know, may the Lord help us. I mean, you shouldn’t want anything to do with this stuff for reasons I’ve tried to explain. And the Bible is very clear about. We talked about being unequally yoked. I mean, if you’re in a church and you’re a member of a church and you’re financially supporting this stuff, then you’re part of the problem. It’s almost like you’re a co-conspirator in the whole thing. So I may be speaking a little out of my out of turn here, Brother Jim maybe you have a lighter, more gentle perspective on it. But I just think, you know, you shouldn’t have anything to do with that stuff. All right, I’ll get off the soapbox.
Pastor Jim: [00:50:33] I’m so glad you answered that question, because, you know my background. I was involved in the word faith movement for almost 20 years. And so I think you just articulated what I would have said also. So anyway, thank you for that question. And back to the phones we go. Let’s see what we have on this time. Thank you for waiting. What’s your Bible question for Dr. Woods this evening? Hello. Caller Hello. Hey, go for it.
Caller: [00:51:00] Okay, Good. Good. Hey, Dr. Woods, I need your help with some of us are worshiping on Saturdays and worship on Sundays. But I’m thinking both of us cannot, may not be right. And then our detractors are using it as if we cannot even agree on anything. Do you have anything, any word for this Sabbath worship and Sunday worship? Thank you, sir.
Pastor Jim: [00:51:27] All right. What a great question. Thank you so much. What this issue of Sabbath and Saturday worship. Father, Pastor.
Pastor Andy: [00:51:39] (laughing) Don’t elevate me too highly.
Pastor Jim: [00:51:40] (laughing) Yeah, I think I’m older than you. Right. So anyway, Pastor. Yeah? How would we answer that?
Pastor Andy: [00:51:45] Well, Saturday as the Sabbath. That’s part of the Mosaic law. Right. And so you’ll see that in Exodus 20:8 through 11, Exodus 31, around verses 15 through 17, that the Jews, you know, going back to the time of Moses, all the way through the time of Christ, were to work six days and they were to rest on the, the last day of the week, which would be Saturday. You get into the New Testament and you discover that Jesus rose from the grave on a Sunday. He rose from the grave on the first day of the week. And as you start moving into the New Testament, you’ll find the early church meeting on Sunday. And these were Jews, by the way. And so they obviously believed to break to break out of a 1500 year old, 1500 year old tradition. I mean, they had to really believe in the resurrection, that in and of itself is proof that the resurrection must have happened to change their minds on that. But when you go over to Acts 20, for example, I think it’s around verse 7, it’s talking about the believers there in Troas. And it says “on the first day of the week when we were gathered together to break bread, Paul began talking to them”. So it looks to me like they’re meeting on Sunday, right? And when you get into 1st Corinthians chapter 16, you discover that the apostle Paul is raising collecting money for an offering, and he gives these instructions concerning this offering that he’s raising for the suffering saints in Jerusalem.
Pastor Andy: [00:53:31] He says on the first day of every week, let each one of you put aside and save as he may prosper, that no collections be made when I come. So it’s the assumption that the church, because Jesus rose on the first day of the week the Christians who comprise the church are meeting on the first day of the week. So meeting on a Saturday to me is reminiscent of the Old Testament law, which we’re not under anymore. The Old Testament law was only given to Israel. Psalm 147 verses 19 and 20 seems to indicate that. And to me the New Testament pattern because Jesus rose on the first day of the week, is the early church was meeting on Sunday rather than Saturday. And so I think that’s God’s best for people to worship the Lord on Sunday. I understand work schedules. Da da da da da. And it’s not like we’re under the law where we go out and stone to death Sabbath breakers as they did. What is it? Numbers 15. Hey, we caught a guy picking up sticks on the Sabbath. Moses, what should we do? I’ll throw rocks at him, you know, till he’s dead. That was the Old Testament law. So we’re not legalistic about Sunday. We understand people have work schedules, but if at all possible, I would try to organize your life according to the New Testament pattern and to gather with your local church on a Sunday.
Pastor Jim: [00:54:56] All right, great, great question. And thank you, Pastor, for a great answer. And back to the phones we go. Thank you for waiting. What is your Bible question this evening for Dr. Woods? Hello? Hello? Yes, there you are. What’s your question?
Caller: [00:55:14] I would like to know about the unpardonable sin that I kind of like heard that the unpardonable sin is the only sin that cannot be forgiven. But I don’t know. I think I heard it a couple of days ago that when people try to ask for forgiveness and they keep going to the same old ways, then God will not even think about them of forgiven. Meaning if I’ve done it 4 or 5 times and I know I’ve done it bad, and I try to ask the Lord for forgiveness, he will kind of like even think about forgiving me because he thinks it’s kind of like a cat and mouse game, so to speak. You know what I mean? Like, you never I mean, you’re supposed to respect the God. You know, you’re supposed to respect the Lord. But the problem is that sometimes, you know, the system of the world is evil and God is pure holy and sometimes kind of like get tired of saying, oh, situation over and over, you know, because what I see on TV sometimes what I hear on the radio, a lot of people just kind of like think that, you know, when you’re born and you die and it’s not that.
Pastor Jim: [00:57:00] Okay, okay, listen, listen, we I think we have the context of your question, and I think we’re going to be able to bless you with a wonderful answer. So you go ahead and hang up and listen for the answer just momentarily here, Pastor, first of all, I think we need to understand what the Bible says the unpardonable sin is, right?
Pastor Andy: [00:57:17] Yeah, well, the unpardonable sin is mentioned in Matthew 12:31 where Jesus says, Therefore I say, any sin and blasphemy shall be forgiven, but blasphemy against the spirit shall not be forgiven. Now, you have to look at this in context. Matthew 12 is the hinge chapter in Matthew’s gospel. It’s where the kingdom is no longer being offered to Israel, and Jesus has now removed the offer of the kingdom from 1st century Israel. They could have had the kingdom right then and there had they trusted in the Messiah. But they did not do that nationally. Israel is going to be set aside for a season. She’s moving off into divine discipline. It’s irreversible and God is now Matthew 16, verse 18, going to raise up a new man called the church. So it’s in that whole context that we find this description of the blasphemy of the Holy Spirit. And just back up to verse 24 to see what it is. It says “but when the Pharisees heard it, they said, this man casts out demons by Beelzebub, the ruler of the demons”. So the Pharisees had attributed Christ’s miracles to Satan and the demons. And once the leadership did that, God said the kingdom, Matthew 21, verse 43, is going to be taken away from you and given instead to a nation. I believe that’s speaking of future Israel, a nation, an ethnos that will bear fruit.
Pastor Andy: [00:58:51] So, what has happened here with the blasphemy of the Holy Spirit is it’s not individual, it’s national. And this is Israel, the nation of Israel. And this is why God pulled out the carpet, I guess we could say or allowed to go into irreversible discipline. That couldn’t be reversed at this point. The nation of Israel, because they the leadership, committed this sin. And that’s what the blasphemy of the Holy Spirit is. Again, I’m looking here at my Ryrie study Bible, and there’s a note at the bottom and it says “The special circumstances involved in this blasphemy cannot be duplicated today”. So, when people are wondering if they individually have committed the blasphemy of the Holy Spirit, they’re confusing a national sin with an individual sin. And we talked about how the epistles are binding on the church today. And in the epistolary literature, there is no warning against blaspheming the spirit. We’re warned against grieving the spirit quenching the spirit. We have scripture against resisting the spirit, but nothing against the. Blasphemy of the Spirit meaning this is a one-time sin committed by 1st century Israel which led to irrevocable, irreversible national consequences that cannot be replicated today in the life of the individual child of God.
Pastor Jim: [01:00:23] All right. Well, we hope that was helpful for you. Thank you so much for calling the program. We do appreciate that. And we’ve reached the end of our program this evening, folks. So we want to thank you so much for calling and participating. We do appreciate you so much. We ask you to pray for us. We’re praying for you. And stick around for the next KHCB Question and Answer program coming to you next week. God bless and have a great weekend.