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Posts Tagged ‘jack kelly’

Great overview of the current rapture theories and some of the issues they pose.

Remember, the darker it gets, the brighter and farther our little light shines!

Maranatha, Lord come quickly!

myblessedhope

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Rapture? Which Rapture?

By Jack Kelley

http://gracethrufaith.com

Among Christians who believe there will be a rapture of the Church, the great majority of us are convinced it will precede the end times judgments. This position is commonly called the pre-tribulation rapture.

Those who reject the pre-trib view are either mid-tribulation, post tribulation or pre-wrath rapture advocates.       In this study we’ll review these rapture positions. (more…)

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It always amazes me how the same themes and models of Christ , the Trinity, and the God Head are worked throughout the Bible, Old and New Testament.  I have never understood people who say the New Testament is the only book for Christians.  It does layout our “history” as a church and the covenant we have with God through Christ Jesus, but it certainly does not stand alone.  There is so much pointing going on between the books through prophecy and direct reference that we would miss so much if we only studies one or the other.

It is through these prophetic references that we gain so much reassurance of how solid the Rock is that we found our faith on.  Jack Kelly does such a great job systematically stepping us through verse by verse how the different prophecies connect, how the translations impact our interpretation, and How the context/audience impacts that interpretation.

Enjoy!

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The Man From Eternity

by Jack Kelly


But you, Bethlehem Ephrathah, though you are small among the clans of Judah, out of you will come for me one who will be ruler over Israel, whose origins are from of old, from ancient times (Micah 5:2).

Everyone who has ever received a Christmas card is familiar with Micah 5:2.  But here’s something you might not know about it.

Beyond the common understanding that it’s a prophecy of the Messiah’s birth place, the way Micah described Him is unique, to say the least, and contradicts the Jewish thought prevalent at the time of His birth that he would be an ordinary man.  The English phrase “whose origins are from of old, from ancient times” is remarkable in itself but only tells part of the story.  A literal translation from the Hebrew shows that the  promised ruler of Israel existed before time began, and would continue to exist forever. He wouldn’t just be a human descendant of King David with a human life span, but would be a man like no other.  A man from eternity.

Later John would say the following about Jesus. Calling Him “The Word” He wrote,

In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God (John 1:1).

So we wouldn’t misunderstand who “The Word” is, John followed up with,

The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the One and Only, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth (John 1:14).

And Jesus Himself made the point that if the Messiah was just a son (descendant) of David’s why did David, speaking through the Holy Spirit, call Him Lord? For David said,

The Lord said to my Lord, “Sit at my right hand until I put your enemies under under your feet” (Matt. 22:43-44)

In our English translation the meaning isn’t clear, and even if you look up the Greek text of Matt. 22:43-44 you can miss it.  (more…)

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Over the last few months there has been a lot of activity within the Church to pray, fast, repent, cry’s for our nation to repent and turn back to God.  It has always made me somewhat uneasy and when I participate, I feel worse.

Jack Kelly really sums up better than I could my gut feelings.  When I found and read the article below and shouted out “Praise the Lord” and I think I shed a few tears.

Deep in my soul I knew that this is a personal deal, not collective in the least.  I can not save you, you can not save me.  It is something between you and God and me and God.

I think too much energy has been spent praying for our will for our nation instead of for God’s will to be done as Christ prayed.  What ever that is, it is guaranteed to be better than anything we can come up with.  He will give us what we need to “occupy” until he returns to rapture us home.

Maranatha Lord, come quickly!

-myblessedhope

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Repenting On Behalf Of Our Country?

by Jack Kelly


Now the glory of the God of Israel went up from above the cherubim, where it had been, and moved to the threshold of the temple. Then the Lord called to the man clothed in linen who had the writing kit at his side and said to him, “Go throughout the city of Jerusalem and put a mark on the foreheads of those who grieve and lament over all the detestable things that are done in it.”

As I listened, he said to the others, “Follow him through the city and kill, without showing pity or compassion. Slaughter old men, young men and maidens, women and children, but do not touch anyone who has the mark. Begin at my sanctuary.” So they began with the elders who were in front of the temple. (Ezekiel 9:3-6)

The principle of marking those who would be protected from judgment was first mentioned in Genesis 4:15 when the Lord marked Cain as a warning to those who might try to kill him for murdering Abel.

It had also been hinted at when the Lord told Elijah He had reserved 7,000 faithful in Israel who had not succumbed to idol worship (1 Kings 19:18), but Ezekiel 9:4 stands as the clearest example in history of the Lord marking those who are His and protecting them from danger.  In the spiritual world the mark is a sign that the marked person belongs to the Lord and is off limits to anyone else.

Have You Been Marked?

And you also were included in Christ when you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation. Having believed, you were marked in him with a seal, the promised Holy Spirit, who is a deposit guaranteeing our inheritance until the redemption of those who are God’s possession—to the praise of his glory (Ephes 1:13-14).

Now it is God who makes both us and you stand firm in Christ. He anointed us, set his seal of ownership on us, and put his Spirit in our hearts as a deposit, guaranteeing what is to come (2 Cor. 1:21-22).

In these two passages Paul revealed that all born again believers were marked at the time they believed to show that they belong to the Lord.  It’s the spiritual equivalent of a rancher branding his cattle with his mark of ownership.  The presence of this mark will protect us like it has protected others He has marked throughout history.

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Great Study, can’t wait for part 2, hopefully next week…

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The Gospel of the Kingdom Vs. The Gospel of Grace

by Jack Kelly


 

Part 1.  The Gospel Of The Kingdom

In those days John the Baptist came, preaching in the Desert of Judea and saying, “Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is near.” (Matt. 3:1-2)

Prophecies of a Messianic King appear throughout the Old Testament and many in the Jewish leadership saw John’s arrival on the scene as their fulfillment.  They sent representatives to the place where John was baptizing to see if he was the promised Messiah. He said he wasn’t, but that the one they had been expecting was even then in their midst (John 1:19-28).

750 years earlier Isaiah had said when the Messiah came He would reign on David’s throne forever (Isaiah 9:6-7) but the throne of David had been vacant for 600 years.  John had come to tell them the time was finally at hand and they had better get ready for Him.

When Jesus began His ministry, John introduced Him as the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world (John 1:8) and publicly testified that Jesus was the Son of God (John 1:34).  Right from the beginning Jesus began teaching that the Kingdom of Heaven was near (Matt. 4:17), and sent His disciples through out the land to alert the people to this fact as well (Matt. 10:7-8).

But even with Isaiah’s prophecies, John’s testimony, and the Lord’s teaching, the Jewish leaders refused to accept that Jesus was the Messiah. They questioned His claims, His doctrine, and His miracles in spite of the fact that all were clearly foretold in their prophecies.

Isaiah had also said when He came the Messiah would have no beauty or majesty that would attract them to Him and that nothing about His appearance would make them desire Him (Isaiah 53:2). The fact that Jesus was not like they expected Him to be was a big problem for them.

Just before John was executed, He had sent a delegation of his disciples to confirm for themselves that Jesus was who He claimed to be.

In reply Jesus said, “Go back and report to John what you hear and see: The blind receive sight, the lame walk, those who have leprosy are cured, the deaf hear, the dead are raised, and the good news is preached to the poor. Blessed is the man who does not fall away on account of me.” (Matt. 11:4-6)

Jesus fed the multitudes, walked on water, healed the sick and raised the dead and still they asked for a miraculous sign.  Finally in frustration He responded, “A wicked and adulterous generation looks for a miraculous sign, but none will be given it except the sign of Jonah. For as Jonah was three days and three nights in the belly of a huge fish, so the Son of Man will be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth” (Matt. 12:38-40). They would get their sign, but only after they had executed Him.

Later, just a few days before His execution, He warned them again.  “Therefore I tell you that the kingdom of God will be taken away from you and given to a people who will produce its fruit (Matt. 21:43). He was speaking of the coming Church.

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This is such a common question that I believe we have all struggled with at some point in time of our lives or if not yet will at some point.  The answer is so reassuring and strengthening of our faith.  Studying prophecy has a similar effect.  I wish more understood how powerful it is.  God laid out for us what will happen before it happened so we could strengthen our faith in Him and with assurance put our trust in Him.  He knew we would struggle like Thomas with doubts and would need some reassurance.  Prophecy is that reassurance and yet largely as a church, Christ’s Bride, we ignore it or worse scoff at God’s predictions that He put in place to reassure us of His power and authority.

Maranatha, Lord Jesus come quickly!

-myblessedhope

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Is God In Total Control Of Everything?

by Jack Kelly


There’s a theory, only hinted at in Scripture, that Planet Earth had been the domain of Satan prior to his rebellion. Although he was only a created being, Satan was an enormously powerful dignitary in God’s Universe (Jude 1:9). He was the overseer of the Cherubim (the guardians of God’s Throne) and a leader of the angelic host. He was God’s most impressive creation (Ezekiel 28:12-15). Because of his position, his power, and his beauty he became proud and rebelled (Ezekiel 28:17, Isaiah 14:13-14), bringing about a judgment that destroyed planet Earth.

All this seems to have happened between Genesis 1:1 and Genesis 1:2. Hints of this in Scripture are

1) an alternate (and some say more literal) rendering of Genesis 1:2 reads, “But the Earth became formless and void”, rather than “and the Earth was formless and void.”

2) In Isaiah 45:18 the Lord said He didn’t create the Earth that way, using the same Hebrew word that’s translated formless in Genesis 1:2, but formed it to be inhabited. Putting these two points together hints at a judgment sometime after Earth’s original creation.

3) The angels already existed at the time of the Genesis creation account. They shouted and sang for joy when the Lord laid the foundations of Earth (Job 38:4-7) so they must have been created earlier. If so, then Satan must have been created earlier was as well.

4) The serpent seems to appear out of nowhere in Genesis 3:1 although there’s no mention of him in the creation account. Also the Hebrew word translated serpent comes from a root meaning enchanter, which could mean it was not an ordinary animal. And Eve didn’t seem to be reluctant to converse with him, indicating she might have recognized him for who he really was.

Let me hasten to add that I don’t believe in a pre-Adamite civilization. The Bible clearly calls Adam the first man (1 Cor. 15:45). It also says the animals were created on the same day as Adam (Genesis 1:24-26) so I don’t believe dinosaurs or any other animals preceded Adam’s creation.

After Earth sat submerged in ruin and darkness for who knows how long, God said “Let there be light” (Genesis 1:3) and the six day Genesis creation process began. It helps to remember that the Bible is not a book about eternity, it’s about the age of man. As such it begins with the creation of the first man and ends when the Millennium ends seven thousand years later. It gives only vague hints about what happened before the Age of Man began and what will come after it ends. All we really know is that there was an eternity past and there will be an eternity future.

God’s first instruction to Adam and Eve was to give them dominion over Planet Earth, telling them to subdue it and populate it (more…)

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I am re-posting this article from a while back.  It is one of my favorite articles that Jack Kelly has done.

With time drawing short, it is critical we understand Jesus’ words and which path we find ourselves on.

Maranatha Lord, come quickly!

-myblessedhope

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Two Roads, Two Gates, One Goal

A Bible Study by Jack Kelley

“Enter through the narrow gate. For wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it. But small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life, and only a few find it.” (Matt. 7:13-14)

This passage is often quoted in reference to the different roads traveled by unbelievers as opposed to believers.  Unbelievers are said to be on a broad road with many fellow travelers, all on the way to their destruction.  Believers on the other hand are a small segment of humanity and are on a narrow road to salvation.  This difference is further defined by some as pertaining to our behavior.  The unbeliever’s gate is wide and his road is broad, supposedly indicating that there’s room for all kinds of sinful behavior, while for the believer it’s a small gate and a narrow road suggesting that there’s very little latitude for misbehaving.  A careless step or two and you may find yourself being rerouted onto the broad road.

If you look at these 2 verses alone it’s easy to understand why so many see them this way.  But in the context of the chapter a different picture emerges.

In Matthew 7 the people in focus all claim to be believers, and the emphasis is on their fruit.  The Lord began by admonishing us against judging others,

“Do not judge, or you too will be judged. For in the same way you judge others, you will be judged, and with the measure you use, it will be measured to you.” (Matt. 7:1-2)

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Jack Kelly lays out a great comparison below of who the Tribulation is for.  I really like his concise explanation of the different audiences that are present in the Bible.  The majority of confusion surrounding prophecy comes when you do not take the time to put the scripture in context but also identify who the audience is that Jesus and/or God is speaking too.

It is the purpose of the tribulation that always kept coming up when I first started studying prophecy many years ago.  Some of the interpretations just didn’t make sense as to why it was needed.  Christ’s act of grace on the cross is all that we need, as the church, for salvation.  It allowed God to forgive us of our all of our sins: past, present, and future.

Just think about that for a moment…

How powerful is that?  He forgave through one-act of selflessness, all our past sins and our present sins, but also all of our future sins.  We are redeemed!  That to me is just mind-blowing.  He knows our heart and our actions before we even do them.  He knows we will struggle with sin while we are still in this world, but through Christ we have overcome!

Maranatha Lord, come quickly!

-myblessedhope

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The Tribulation’s Purpose Vs. The Church’s Nature

by Jack Kelly


Therefore keep watch because you do not know the day or the hour. (Matt. 25:13)

Those who shy away from the study of prophecy are fond of quoting the above verse as their justification.  But earlier in the same passage, the Lord had admonished all who read His words of prophecy to understand them (Matt 24:15).  In addition the Apostle Paul wrote that the events leading up to the end of the age should not take believers by surprise (1 Thes. 5:4) implying that we should be familiar with them.

Since the Bible cannot contradict itself, Matt. 24:15 must have been aimed at a different audience than Matt. 25:13.  And sure enough, a closer look reveals that both the implied timing and the intended audience of the two Matthew passages are different.  Matt. 24:15  was intended for everyone who would ever read the passage, but in Matt 25:13 the Lord was only speaking to people remaining on Earth at His Second Coming.  We know this because it follows Matt. 24:30 which describes the 2nd Coming.  Matt. 24:36-37 confirms the context to be the 2nd Coming, as does Matt. 25:1.  Of course in 1 Thes 5:4 Paul was addressing the church, who will not be on Earth at the 2nd Coming, but in the presence of the Father (1 Thes. 3:13).

What both the Lord (Matt.24:15) and Paul (1 Thes. 5:4) were saying is that while we won’t know the exact timing of things, we should understand the sequence of events leading up to the Day of the Lord. And perhaps no event in the sequence is more controversial than the Rapture of the Church, especially as it relates to the Great Tribulation.

It seems to me that the first thing we should do in trying to obey the Lord’s commandment to understand all this is to clarify two things, 1) the purpose of the Great Tribulation, 2) the nature of the Church.

The Purpose of the Great Tribulation

The phrase Great Tribulation makes reference to a specific event, not a general condition. While the Lord warned the disciples (more…)

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