Etikettarkiv | tree

Being cut off from the VINE due to lack of FRUIT, despite starting out in Jesus – John 15

tree 2A branch can start out in the vine (Jesus) and still be cut off at a later stage due to lack of fruit

”Fruit” is often used as another term for ”works” – as in showing our faith by doing good deeds towards others. We are not saved by either faith alone or works alone, but the two must go together. The following are some things we learn from John 15:

  • Branches that bear at least some fruit (which is a sign of life) will be pruned, but if branches bear no fruit at all they will be removed and thrown into the fire
  • The branches that were cut off were so because they did not abide by bearing fruit, and they will WITHER which shows they used to be alive and fresh.
  • Jesus declared his disciples ”clean” and yet they (along with all of us) were warned to not be cut off the vine due to lack of fruit.
  • Being thrown in the fire is a common term for being thrown into hell, and this happens when people transgress God’s commandments and refuse to repent.
  • We are fervently urged to ABIDE. We are not simply told that we absolutely WILL abide because it’s not possible to lose our salvation. It’s the other way around since we are told to stick with Jesus, or else terrible things will follow.
  • There are many IF:s in the chapter. ”IF a man abide not in me…”, ”IF ye abide in me….”, ”IF ye keep my commandments, ye shall abide in my love….” ”IF ye do whatsoever I command you, you are my friends”, etc. Why all these IF:s if we are eternally secure once we are in Jesus?
  • God is GLORIFIED when we bear fruit, so his desire is that we bear fruit so that he can be more glorified. That means that it’s something negative if a branch that used to be in him must be cut off due to being useless.
  • Bearing fruit is a condition for being a disciple of Jesus.
  • We are told to CONTINUE in his love. We are not told that it’s a certainty that we will.
  • We are told that we are friends of Jesus IF we obey his commandments.
  • Jesus gives us a commandment to love one another, just like Jesus has loved us. This shows us that we can heed to this commandment.
  • Jesus also tells us that he has kept his Father’s commandment and therefore he abides in his love, and we are asked to do the very same (obey the commandments so that we can abide in Jesus love).
  • Jesus had even ordained his disciples to bear much fruit, but this naturally doesn’t mean that they had no ability to disobey. Judas (a chosen disciple) had departed earlier, but from history we learn that the other eleven remained with Jesus and showed much good fruit throughout their lives.
  • Certain people ”had not had sin” if it weren’t for the fact that they rejected Jesus despite that he had come and spoken to them and shown them amazing works of God that no other man has done. Their refusal to accept Jesus made them guilty as sinners, despite that they were very religious Jews eager to obey the law of Moses.

John 15:1I am the true vine, and my Father is the husbandman.Every branch in me that beareth not fruit he taketh away: and every branch that beareth fruit, he purgeth it, that it may bring forth more fruit.3 Now ye are clean through the word which I have spoken unto you.4 Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, except it abide in the vine; no more can ye, except ye abide in me.5 I am the vine, ye are the branches: He that abideth in me, and I in him, the same bringeth forth much fruit: for without me ye can do nothing.6 If a man abide not in me, he is cast forth as a branch, and is withered; and men gather them, and cast them into the fire, and they are burned.7 If ye abide in me, and my words abide in you, ye shall ask what ye will, and it shall be done unto you.8 Herein is my Father glorified, that ye bear much fruit; so shall ye be my disciples.9 As the Father hath loved me, so have I loved you: continue ye in my love.10; even as I have kept my Father’s commandments, and abide in his love.11 These things have I spoken unto you, that my joy might remain in you, and that your joy might be full.12 This is my commandment, That ye love one another, as I have loved you.13 Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends.14 Ye are my friends, if ye do whatsoever I command you.15 Henceforth I call you not servants; for the servant knoweth not what his lord doeth: but I have called you friends; for all things that I have heard of my Father I have made known unto you.16 Ye have not chosen me, but I have chosen you, and ordained you, that ye should go and bring forth fruit, and that your fruit should remain: that whatsoever ye shall ask of the Father in my name, he may give it you.17 These things I command you, that ye love one another. —.22 If I had not come and spoken unto them, they had not had sin: but now they have no cloak for their sin.—24 If I had not done among them the works which none other man did, they had not had sin: but now have they both seen and hated both me and my Father.

While the above chapter shows that we can be cut off from the vine due to lack of fruit, the following chapter shows that we as branches can be cut off from the olive tree due to lack of faith (unbelief).

  • The good olive tree with its roots is a picture of the Jews to whom the gospel was first provided. We are also told about another olive tree (wild by nature) which is a picture of the gentiles. Some of the branches in the good olive tree were broken off when Jews rejected Jesus as the Messiah, and the gentiles could be grafted in – provided they had faith.
  • Paul tells us not to boast about our place in the olive tree, but he also says ”IF you boast...” showing that we might choose to be disobedient to God against his will.
  • We are told that we stand in the olive tree by FAITH, so this is a condition for salvation (both for the Jew and the gentile).
  • We are told to not be high-minded , but Paul wants us to live in ”fear” (in another letter he says: ”work out your own salvation with fear and trembling”) since God has shown that he doesn’t necessarily spare the branches if they don’t cooperate by having faith.
  • We are told to TAKE HEED, which would be a useless warning unless there were a real risk that we could lose our place in the olive tree. We are specifically told that we might not be spared due to unbelief.
  • We are told to keep those who tragically fell in mind, because we too might be cut off if we don’t continue in his kindness.
  • Jews (or anyone) can be grafted in AGAIN (meaning we can go from being in the tree, to not being in the tree, to being in the tree again). The condition is FAITH and that we continue to abide.

Rom. 11:16 For if the firstfruit be holy, the lump is also holy: and if the root be holy, so are the branches.17 And if some of the branches be broken off, and thou, being a wild olive tree, wert grafted in among them, and with them partakest of the root and fatness of the olive tree;18 Boast not against the branches. But if thou boast, thou bearest not the root, but the root thee.19 Thou wilt say then, The branches were broken off, that I might be grafted in.20 Well; because of unbelief they were broken off, and thou standest by faith. Be not highminded, BUT FEAR:21 For if God spared not the natural branches, TAKE HEED LEST HE ALSO SPARE NOT THEE.22 Behold therefore the goodness and severity of God: on them which fell, severity; but toward thee, goodness, IF THOU CONTINUE IN HIS GOODNESS: OTHERWISE THOU ALSO SHALT BE CUT OFF.23 And they also, IF THEY ABIDE NOT STILL IN UNBELIEF, shall be grafted in: for God is able to graft them in again.24 For if thou wert cut out of the olive tree which is wild by nature, and wert grafted contrary to nature into a good olive tree: how much more shall these, which be the natural branches, be grafted into their own olive tree?

In the below parable we can read about a vineyard who belongs to the ”well-beloved”, and we are told he is the same as ”The Lord of hosts”. He worked hard to produce good grapes, but contrary to his expectations WILD grapes were brought forth. What else could he have done to his vineyard apart from what he has already done? Nothing, and yet things didn’t turn out the way he wanted. The Lord of hosts then proceeded to lay his vineyard to waste.

Isaiah 5:1 Now let me sing to my Well-beloved A song of my Beloved regarding His vineyard: My Well-beloved has a vineyard On a very fruitful hill. 2 He dug it up and cleared out its stones, And planted it with the choicest vine. He built a tower in its midst, And also made a winepress in it; So He EXPECTED IT TO BRING FORTH GOOD GRAPES, BUT IT BROUGHT FORTH WILD GRAPES .3 “And now, O inhabitants of Jerusalem and men of Judah, Judge, please, between Me and My vineyard.4 What more could have been done to My vineyard That I have not done in it? WHY THEN, when I expected it to bring forth good grapes, Did it bring forth wild grapes?5 And now, please let Me tell you what I will do to My vineyard: I will take away its hedge, and it shall be burned; And break down its wall, and it shall be trampled down.6 I will lay it waste; It shall not be pruned or dug, But there shall come up briers and thorns. I will also command the clouds That they rain no rain on it.”7 For the vineyard of the Lord of hosts is the house of Israel, And the men of Judah are His pleasant plant. He looked for justice, but behold, oppression; For righteousness, but behold, a cry for help. (NKJV)

I had planted you a noble vine, a seed of highest quality. How then have you turned before Me Into the degenerate plant of an alien vine?” (NKJV) is the question asked in Jeremiah 2:21. God planted one thing and expected a certain result (a noble vine), and yet he received a totally different result (an alien vine). Things don’t always end up as God desires, and that is due to our free will that he created us with.

Jeremiah 2:19 Thine own wickedness shall correct thee, and thy backslidings shall reprove thee: know therefore and see that it is an evil thing and bitter, that thou hast forsaken the Lord thy God, and that my fear is not in thee, saith the Lord God of hosts.20 For of old time I have broken thy yoke, and burst thy bands; and thou saidst, I will not transgress; when upon every high hill and under every green tree thou wanderest, playing the harlot.21 Yet I had planted thee a noble vine, wholly a right seed: how then art thou turned into the degenerate plant of a strange vine unto me?22 For though thou wash thee with nitre, and take thee much soap, yet thine iniquity is marked before me, saith the Lord God.

Jeremiah 8:12 Were they ashamed when they had committed abomination? nay, they were not at all ashamed, neither could they blush: therefore shall they fall among them that fall: in the time of their visitation they shall be cast down, saith the Lord.13 I will surely consume them, saith the Lord: there shall be no grapes on the vine, nor figs on the fig tree, and the leaf shall fade; and the things that I have given them shall pass away from them.

The Lord of hosts planted a tree and called it ”a green olive tree, fair and of goodly fruit”. Yet, he ended up destroying it and branches were broken off. It’s a picture of God’s holy people ending up rebelling against him and provoking him to anger due to their evil deeds.

Jeremiah 11:15 What hath my beloved to do in mine house, seeing she hath wrought lewdness with many, and the holy flesh is passed from thee? when thou doest evil, then thou rejoicest.16 The Lord called thy name, A green olive tree, fair, and of goodly fruit: with the noise of a great tumult he hath kindled fire upon it, and the branches of it are broken.17 For the Lord of hosts, that planted thee, hath pronounced evil against thee, for the evil of the house of Israel and of the house of Judah, which they have done against themselves to provoke me to anger in offering incense unto Baal.

Every man is judged based on his fruit. It’s wise to win souls:

Jeremiah 17:10 I the Lord search the heart, I try the reins, even to give every man according to his ways, and according to the fruit of his doings.

Proverbs 11:30 The fruit of the righteous is a tree of life; and he that winneth souls is wise.

More from the New Testament (apart from John 15 and Romans 11 above)

tree 1

We have not truly repented if we bring forth bad fruit. John the Baptist refused to baptize Jews who were still stuck in their corruption and sins. Every tree which doesn’t bring forth good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire.

Matthew 3:8 Bring forth therefore fruits meet for repentance:9 And think not to say within yourselves, We have Abraham to our father: for I say unto you, that God is able of these stones to raise up children unto Abraham.10 And now also the axe is laid unto the root of the trees: therefore every tree which bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire.

Even evil people can give good gifts to their children, but this doesn’t mean they are saved. It does mean that we can all do good. (Seeking God and repenting are two examples of good things that an unsaved person might choose to do.) We are told to enter the narrow gate, meaning the choice is ours. We are told to beware of false prophets, which shows that there is a risk that believers might be deceived. It also shows that people are NOT forced into being ”non-elect” or ”elect”, because for the non-elect a warning to beware of false prophets would fall into deaf ears, and the elect don’t even need to be warned because they can’t even lose their salvation. False prophets might be dressed in sheep’s clothing but we are still able to know them by their fruit. Are they for instance willing to be corrected by the Bible? Do they often lose their self-control and resort to name callings? Do they subtly encourage people to sin by declaring that we can safely serve two masters and still be saved? Do they show good deeds in their lives? We decide what kinds of trees we want to become, but we are also likened with branches (see above) that can be cut off.

”Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that DOETH the will of my Father which is in heaven.” Doing wonderful works in God’s name (prophesying, casting out demons, etc) is of course not a sin, but if you add iniquity into the picture you’re a sinner and therefore lost. Naturally everyone can get his/her soul restored by repenting! In the story below, Jesus had never known the people spoken about – probably because they had always been workers of iniquity and lawless.

”Whosoever heareth these sayings of mine, and DOETH them…” shows that not everyone is doing the will of God – but if he is doing the will of God, then that person is wise and is likened to having built his house on a rock. Notice that it’s not God who builds the house on the rock for him, but he does so himself and that is the reason he is considered to be wise – by obeying his Lord, which sadly not all choose to do.

Matthew 7:11 If ye then, being evil, know how to give good gifts unto your children, how much more shall your Father which is in heaven give good things to them that ask him?12 Therefore all things whatsoever ye would that men should do to you, do ye even so to them: for this is the law and the prophets.13 Enter ye in at the strait gate: for wide is the gate, and broad is the way, that leadeth to destruction, and many there be which go in thereat:14 Because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it.15 Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves.16 Ye shall know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes of thorns, or figs of thistles?17 Even so every good tree bringeth forth good fruit; but a corrupt tree bringeth forth evil fruit.18 A good tree cannot bring forth evil fruit, neither can a corrupt tree bring forth good fruit.19 Every tree that bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire.20 Wherefore by their fruits ye shall know them.21 Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven.22 Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works?23 And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work INIQUITY.24 Therefore whosoever heareth these sayings of mine, and DOETH them, I will liken him unto a wise man, which built his house upon a rock:

We certainly can’t blame God for placing evil thoughts into our hearts, because then he would be blamed for our iniquities. On judgment day we are to give account for every unnecessary word that we have said, showing that it’s our own responsibility to master our own tongues. We choose if we want to be a good person or an evil person.

Matthew 12:33 Either make the tree good, and his fruit good; or else make the tree corrupt, and his fruit corrupt: for the tree is known by his fruit.34 O generation of vipers, how can ye, being evil, speak good things? for out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaketh.35 A good man out of the good treasure of the heart bringeth forth good things: and an evil man out of the evil treasure bringeth forth evil things.36 But I say unto you, That every idle word that men shall speak, they shall give account thereof in the day of judgment.37 For by thy words thou shalt be justified, and by thy words thou shalt be condemned.

”Why call ye me, Lord, Lord, and do not the things which I say?”Luke 6:46. Why indeed? We certainly don’t have to disobey God, but if we do it’s our own choice and nothing that we can blame on God.

Luke 6:43 For a good tree bringeth not forth corrupt fruit; neither doth a corrupt tree bring forth good fruit.44 For every tree is known by his own fruit. For of thorns men do not gather figs, nor of a bramble bush gather they grapes.45 A good man out of the good treasure of his heart bringeth forth that which is good; and an evil man out of the evil treasure of his heart bringeth forth that which is evil: for of the abundance of the heart his mouth speaketh.46 And why call ye me, Lord, Lord, and do not the things which I say?

Some people bless God with the same mouth as they curse others – for instance their brothers and sisters. James says to this brothers (indicating it also concerns believers) that it should not have to be in that way.

James 3:9 Therewith bless we God, even the Father; and therewith curse we men, which are made after the similitude of God.10 Out of the same mouth proceedeth blessing and cursing. My brethren, THESE THINGS OUGHT NOT SO TO BE.11 Doth a fountain send forth at the same place sweet water and bitter?12 Can the fig tree, my brethren, bear olive berries? either a vine, figs? so can no fountain both yield salt water and fresh.

Jesus always hopes for that we will bear fruit, and he doesn’t give up until one final day when it’s too late. Then the fig tree will finally be cut down for good:

Luke 13:6 He spake also this parable; A certain man had a fig tree planted in his vineyard; and he came and sought fruit thereon, and found none.7 Then said he unto the dresser of his vineyard, Behold, these three years I come seeking fruit on this fig tree, and find none: cut it down; why cumbereth it the ground?8 And he answering said unto him, Lord, let it alone this year also, till I shall dig about it, and dung it:9 And if it bear fruit, well: and IF NOT, then after that thou shalt cut it down.

Annonser

ADAM and EVE sinned in Eden – and caused physical death on their posterity

adam-och-evaWhen Adam sinned, he caused physical death on all his posterity 

Both Adam and Eve transgressed God’s law, but their sins were still a bit different from each other. Eve was deceived by the serpent (1 Tim. 2:14) which resulted in her transgression of the law, but Adam sinned for other reasons and he is viewed as the head of his household and also regarded as the forefather of all inhabitants of the earth. That’s why the focus is much more on Adam’s sin than on Eve’s sin, and why we often say that Adam brought sin into the world. Adam also means ”man” or ”human being”.

When Adam sinned he died spiritually since death is the wages of sin, and if a person dies spiritually he must also die physically – a living soul must continue to have a body to live in. It’s actually a good deal to die physically once stuck in a sinful world, because living for eternity in this type of world is nothing to look forward to.  God has a much greater plan in mind, and he was prepared with his salvation offer from the start – knowing there would be a chance that Adam might choose to sin. So physical death is required whenever there is spiritual death, but it’s also possible to die physically even though you haven’t sinned. Jesus Christ is a good example of this, and innocent babies is another. Adam and Eve were evicted from the garden of Eden, and they could no longer reach the tree of life which previously sustained them. Eating from the tree of life was needed in order to not let their bodies start decaying (eating other things will only sustain your bodies for an extended period of time), but since they were evicted from the garden they slowly started to die physically and Adam’s future posterity couldn’t reach the tree of life either.

So in a way we die physically due to Adam, but even if Adam had not sinned it’s possible that WE would still sin, and then we would be the ones causing physical death upon ourselves. Most importantly, we cause spiritual death upon ourselves if we sin (and we have), and this can never be blamed on Adam. Sinning is something we might choose to DO, and it can’t be inherited. Adam’s nature was not affected through his sin, but we are told that Adam would have to work from the sweat of his brow for his bread, and till the ground to produce crop.  Eve would greatly multiply her pain in childbearing. Those ”curses” from God affected all of us. So Adam opened up a can of worms, that God never intended for him to open. God promised that Adam and Eve (clean people) would DIE if they sinned, and the serpent said the exact opposite – that Eve would NOT die if she sinned. The serpent’s lie seems to be an easy lie to expose, and yet many churches today teach the same Satanic message: ”Oh, you’re sinning? Just do your best, and remember that God loves you as you are. Faith alone will save you, and Jesus imputed his righteousness into you and took both your sins and your punishment, so now you’re totally free. Death no longer has any hold on you, and you’re unconditionally eternally secure”. 

Gen. 2:17 But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it: for in the DAY (then when, or whenever…) that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die (dying thou shalt die)

Gen. 3:4 And the serpent said unto the woman, Ye shall not surely die

In Romans 5  Paul is talking about a spiritual death, a separation from God when a person sins.  It’s about condemnation and justification, and the condemnation is referring to spiritual death, not physical, for those who are justified still die physically. Notice that death spread to all men (not sin), and that the reason for this is because they sinned (and not because Adam sinned on their part).

Rom. 5:12 Therefore, just as through one man sin entered the world, and death through sin, and thus death spread to all men, because all sinned

Paul says that some sinned NOT according to the “likeness” of Adam’s original transgression (Rom. 5:14), and it’s true that we sinned in different ways (but it’s still sin).  Adam broke a command that he personally received straight from God, which isn’t the case with us. Sin is not a physical substance that is inbred in our flesh, but sinfulness is rather connected to an individual’s conduct. The Bible doesn’t teach that all men are automatically made righteous by Christ apart from repenting and believing, and neither that all men are automatically made sinners by Adam apart from their choice to sin.

Deuteronomy 24:16 Fathers shall NOT be put to death for their children, nor children for their fathers…every man shall be put to death for his own sin

Ezekiel 18:4 All souls are mine; as the soul of the father, so also the soul of the son is mine; the soul that sins, it shall die.

1 Cor. 15:21-22 is often quoted “For as in Adam all die…”, but this passage is strictly speaking of physical death because the context is the physical resurrection of the dead. Death is a consequence springing from the man Adam, just as a glorified body shall come in the future through the man Jesus Christ.

1 Co. 15:21-22.For since by man came death, by Man also came the resurrection of the dead. For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ all shall be made alive

It is YOUR iniquities and YOUR sins that separates you from God, and not someone else’s sin.

Why did God create a tree which is forbidden to eat from?

I believe the tree was there for our benefit – like all things from God. Each time Adam and Eve passed the tree of knowledge of good and evil, they would have to make an active decision whether to obey God – by avoid eating from the tree – or disobey him.  Having a good contact with our Creator, and adhering to his commands are of great importance for our own well-being. We need his wisdom and his guidance.

Lucifer fell AFTER the Creation 

God’s angels were probably created BEFORE or perhaps DURING the creation of the earth, because when God laid the corner-stone of the earth, the morning stars sang together and the sons of God shouted for joy (those are two categories of angels). Also Satan was an angel, and this means that he too must have been created before the creation of the earth.

Job 38:4 Where wast thou when I laid the foundations of the earth? declare, if thou hast understanding.5 Who hath laid the measures thereof, if thou knowest? or who hath stretched the line upon it?6 Whereupon are the foundations thereof fastened? or who laid the corner stone thereof;When the morning stars sang together, and all the sons of God shouted for joy?

We also know that Satan must have rebelled against God AFTER the completion of the creation week, because we can read that the created week was ”Very Good”. Is it possible to label a scenario where you have a proud angel who rebels against his Maker for ”Very Good”?  Hardly. Neither is it ”Very Good” that 1/3 of the angels chose to side with Satan and fell together with him.

Gen.1:31 And God saw every thing that he had made, and, behold, it was VERY GOOD. And the evening and the morning were the sixth day.

Rev. 12:4 And his tail drew the third part of the stars of heaven, and did cast them to the earth: and the dragon stood before the woman which was ready to be delivered, for to devour her child as soon as it was born.—7 And there was war in heaven: Michael and his angels fought against the dragon; and the dragon fought and his angels,8 And prevailed not; neither was their place found any more in heaven.9 And the great dragon was cast out, that old serpent, called the Devil, and Satan, which deceiveth the whole world: he was cast out into the earth, and his angels were cast out with him.

We can learn from Ezekiel that the same day as Satan was created, he was covered with precious stones, and that he had this appearance in the garden of Eden (which was also created at this point).  Satan was perfect from the day of his creation until iniquity was found in him, and we can read that the reason for Satan being cast out of the mountain of God, was due to his pride and violence which sprung from his beauty. The garden of Eden, the mountain of God, the beautiful stones, they were all there before Satan sinned, so it could not have been before day 6th of the creation week.

Ezekiel 28:13 Thou hast been in Eden the garden of God; every precious stone was thy covering, the sardius, topaz, and the diamond, the beryl, the onyx, and the jasper, the sapphire, the emerald, and the carbuncle, and gold: the workmanship of thy tabrets and of thy pipes was prepared in thee in the day that thou wast created.14 Thou art the anointed cherub that covereth; and I have set thee so: thou wast upon the holy mountain of God; thou hast walked up and down in the midst of the stones of fire.15 Thou wast perfect in thy ways from the day that thou wast created, till iniquity was found in thee.16 By the multitude of thy merchandise they have filled the midst of thee with violence, and thou hast sinned: therefore I will cast thee as profane out of the mountain of God: and I will destroy thee, O covering cherub, from the midst of the stones of fire.17 Thine heart was lifted up because of thy beauty, thou hast corrupted thy wisdom by reason of thy brightness: I will cast thee to the ground, I will lay thee before kings, that they may behold thee.18 Thou hast defiled thy sanctuaries by the multitude of thine iniquities, by the iniquity of thy traffick; therefore will I bring forth a fire from the midst of thee, it shall devour thee, and I will bring thee to ashes upon the earth in the sight of all them that behold thee.

We can trust the Biblical information that the earth was very good when God said it was, but things probably started to go downhill very fast…

We are not certain of when Cain was conceived, but some people believe it must have been after the fall IF the concept of inherited sin is valid. They reason that Cain couldn’t have been born in sin (inherited his father’s sin) if he was conceived before the fall, and that might be true if it was possible to inherit sin, but the fact is that it’s not. Sinning is something we might choose to DO, and nothing that can be inherited through the DNA. So we can’t be certain if Eve was pregnant or not when the serpent deceived her, but we do know that God asked Adam and Eve to be fruitful, to multiply and to replenish the earth. This command was given on the 6th day, which is the same day as their creation. If two ”very good” and healthy human beings are commanded to be fruitful, there is a good chance that they didn’t wait for days and weeks before they decided to obey their Lord.  God’s view is that we can rule over sin and avoid sinning (if we inherited sin, it wouldn’t be possible to avoid), but if we always choose to obey this command is another matter.

Genesis 4:7 If thou doest well, shalt thou not be accepted? and if thou doest not well, sin lieth at the door. And unto thee shall be his desire, and thou shalt rule over him.

Read more about God’s equal ways, and that a son shall not inherit sin from his father:

Ez. 18: 4 Behold, all souls are mine; as the soul of the father, so also the soul of the son is mine: the soul that sinneth, it shall die.—8 He that hath not given forth upon usury, neither hath taken any increase, that hath withdrawn his hand from iniquity, hath executed true judgment between man and man,9 Hath walked in my statutes, and hath kept my judgments, to deal truly; he is just, he shall surely live, saith the Lord God.—14 Now, lo, if he beget a son, that seeth all his father’s sins which he hath done, and considereth, and doeth not such like,—17 — hath walked in my statutes; he shall not die for the iniquity of his father, he shall surely live.—19 Yet say ye, Why? doth not the son bear the iniquity of the father? When the son hath done that which is lawful and right, and hath kept all my statutes, and hath done them, he shall surely live.20 The soul that sinneth, it shall die. The son shall not bear the iniquity of the father, neither shall the father bear the iniquity of the son: the righteousness of the righteous shall be upon him, and the wickedness of the wicked shall be upon him.21 But if the wicked will turn from all his sins that he hath committed, and keep all my statutes, and do that which is lawful and right, he shall surely live, he shall not die.22 All his transgressions that he hath committed, they shall not be mentioned unto him: in his righteousness that he hath done he shall live.23 Have I any pleasure at all that the wicked should die? saith the Lord God: and not that he should return from his ways, and live?24 But when the righteous turneth away from his righteousness, and committeth iniquity, and doeth according to all the abominations that the wicked man doeth, shall he live? All his righteousness that he hath done shall not be mentioned: in his trespass that he hath trespassed, and in his sin that he hath sinned, in them shall he die.25 Yet ye say, The way of the Lord is not equal. Hear now, O house of Israel; Is not my way equal? are not your ways unequal?

There are not two different creation accounts, but there is only one creation account described from two different perspectives. In Genesis 2 we can read the details from man’s perspective in Eden, after that Adam and Eve had been created. Genesis 1 contains the general description of the entire creation.

The world is created  BY Jesus own hands (and Jesus is God)alla4

Colossians 1:14 In whom we have redemption through his blood, even the forgiveness of sins:15 Who is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of every creature:16 For by him were all things created, that are in heaven, and that are in earth, visible and invisible, whether they be thrones, or dominions, or principalities, or powers: all things were created by him, and for him:17 And he is before all things, and by him all things consist.18 And he is the head of the body, the church: who is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead; that in all things he might have the preeminence.19 For it pleased the Father that in him should all fulness dwell;

Hebr. 1:8 But unto the Son he saith, Thy throne, O God, is for ever and ever: a sceptre of righteousness is the sceptre of thy kingdom.9 Thou hast loved righteousness, and hated iniquity; therefore God, even thy God, hath anointed thee with the oil of gladness above thy fellows.10 And, Thou, Lord, in the beginning hast laid the foundation of the earth; and the heavens are the works of thine hands:

The Gap theory and the age of the earth

It’s common to try to add millions of years between Gen. 1:1 and Gen. 1:2 (the gap theory) but the question is WHY there is such a need to squeeze in extra time into these verses when the Bible itself doesn’t mention it? What do we gain by doing so and who does it benefit? Is it possible that it has something to do with the Evolution theory and its urgent need of lots of time to make it plausible? There is absolutely no need to put out the red carpet for this theory, because it’s a fairy tale for grown ups, and compromising with Scripture leads to Bible contradictions. Some christians claim that they don’t believe in the Evolution theory, but only the millions/billions of years, but from where do they get this idea that the earth must be so old? Isn’t it from Evolutionists? There are scientists with PhD exams (from secular schools) who are young earth creationists, so it’s possible to be a scientist without making use of long ages. The long ages didn’t derive from objective science but from the subjective evolution theory, and that’s not the same thing. It’s of course possible to leave the Bible out of science (you can’t prove or disprove God by using science), but we still find evidence for a young earth by studying facts in our nature. We can also read the Bible and see what it says, and it suggests that the earth was created in six days:

Exodus 20:8 Remember the sabbath day, to keep it holy.9 Six days shalt thou labour, and do all thy work:10 But the seventh day is the sabbath of the Lord thy God: in it thou shalt not do any work, thou, nor thy son, nor thy daughter, thy manservant, nor thy maidservant, nor thy cattle, nor thy stranger that is within thy gates:11 For in six days the Lord made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that in them is, and rested the seventh day: wherefore the Lord blessed the sabbath day, and hallowed it.

Gen.1:31 And God saw every thing that he had made, and, behold, it was VERY GOOD. And the evening and the morning were the sixth day.

God could have created the heavens and the earth in 5 seconds, 5000 years or millions of years, but God had a reason for creating everything in 6 ordinary days. It was because he wanted to make a pattern for our lives – to encourage us to work for 6 days and rest 1 day, which seems to be a good life rhythm for man. During these 6 days God created heaven and earth, the sea and all that is in them”, and that covers pretty much everything. God didn’t create the earth to be void but to be inhabited, so why would God first create the earth and then sit around waiting for millions of years until he proceeded to create the rest of the stuff that he had already planned to fill his creation with? If someone suggests that it didn’t take millions of years from GOD’s point of view but only from our point of view, then why even give us the details about the six days? If it says ”six days”, isn’t it a risk that we believe it took six ordinary days? God is not the God of confusion, and he is able to express himself in a way that we understand.

Isaiah 45: 18 For thus saith the Lord that created the heavens; God himself that formed the earth and made it; he hath established it, he created it not in vain, he formed it to be inhabited: I am the Lord; and there is none else.—21 Tell ye, and bring them near; yea, let them take counsel together: who hath declared this from ancient time? who hath told it from that time? have not I the Lord? and there is no God else beside me; a just God and a Saviour; there is none beside me.22 Look unto me, and be ye saved, all the ends of the earth: for I am God, and there is none else.

The classical concept of ”Big Bang” can’t be true at the same time as the Biblical explanation is true since they are mutually exclusive. It’s one or the other. According to the Bible the earth was created Day 1 before the sun, the moon and the stars (which were created Day 4), but not so according to the Big Bang theory. According to the Bible the first land animals were created Day 6th (after the birds), which was the same day as man was created, but not so according to the Evolution theory where land animals lived millions of years before man evolved. The Evolution theory also places dinosaurs (land animals) before birds, but it’s the other way around according to the Bible.

Some christians try to squeeze the millions of years into the creation week by adding some of them each day. However, if the duration of the nights were thousands/millions of years, the vegetation would die, and animals wouldn’t get any food. If the days were longer, vegetation would get the much-needed light but too much of it, and the ecological chain would still be interrupted . We all need both light and darkness, regularly and in perfect proportions, or else we will die due to lack of food. 

If God didn’t create in six days as he said he did, then he has completely failed to convey for us how long it really took, despite that the Bible is meant for us to understand.  It would have been better to not give us any indications of time at all, instead of saying first day, second, day, six days, etc, and not mean a thing with such misleading details which only confuse honest people who would like to read the Bible as it says. Furthermore, it’s not possible to squeeze thousands of years in between the generations that we can read about in Genesis and in the book of Luke, because no generation is missing. Enoch is even mentioned as the 7th from Adam (Jude 1:14), but perhaps this information can’t be trusted either, despite that it can be read in the New Testament? If we can’t trust the information concerning time in Genesis, when can we start to trust it?  We can read that God created Adam and Eve in the BEGINNING OF THE CREATION, but if we squeeze in millions of years somewhere in the creation week, Adam and Eve will be placed in the very END of the creation week which is the opposite of what Mark says.

Mark 10:6 But from the BEGINNING OF THE CREATION God made them male and female.7 For this cause shall a man leave his father and mother, and cleave to his wife

 Adam, Eve, Cain, Abel, Enoch and Noah were real people to whom we are related

We can trust that Genesis means what it says, and that it should not be read as poetry or allegories, but as our real history. 

Oxford Hebrew scholar and Professor James Barr:

”… probably, so far as I know, there is no professor of Hebrew or Old Testament at any world-class university who does not believe that the writer(s) of Genesis 1–11 intended to convey to their readers the ideas that:

  • a) creation took place in a series of six days which were the same as the days of 24 hours we now experience
  • b) the figures contained in the Genesis genealogies provided by simple addition a chronology from the beginning of the world up to later stages in the biblical story
  • c) Noah’s flood was understood to be world-wide and extinguish all human and animal life except for those in the ark.’

If the below verses should not be read as real history, the Bible ends up being a very confusing book and it’s hard to know what can be trusted or not.

Genesis 3:20 And Adam called his wife’s name Eve; because she was the mother of all living.21 Unto Adam also and to his wife did the Lord God make coats of skins, and clothed them.22 And the Lord God said, Behold, the man is become as one of us, to know good and evil: and now, lest he put forth his hand, and take also of the tree of life, and eat, and live for ever:

Genesis 5:2 Male and female created he them; and blessed them, and called their name Adam, in the day when they were created.3 And Adam lived an hundred and thirty years, and begat a son in his own likeness, and after his image; and called his name Seth:4 And the days of Adam after he had begotten Seth were eight hundred years: and he begat sons and daughters:5 And all the days that Adam lived were nine hundred and thirty years: and he died.

1 Chron. 1:1 Adam, Sheth, Enosh,2 Kenan, Mahalaleel, Jered,3 Henoch, Methuselah, Lamech,4 Noah, Shem, Ham, and Japheth.5 The sons of Japheth; Gomer, and Magog, and Madai, and Javan, and Tubal, and Meshech, and Tiras.6 And the sons of Gomer; Ashchenaz, and Riphath, and Togarmah.7 And the sons of Javan; Elishah, and Tarshish, Kittim, and Dodanim (see also Gen. 10: 1-2)

Deut. 32:7 Remember the days of old, consider the years of many generations: ask thy father, and he will shew thee; thy elders, and they will tell thee.8 When the Most High divided to the nations their inheritance, when he separated the sons of Adam, he set the bounds of the people according to the number of the children of Israel.

Job 31:33 If I covered my transgressions as Adam, by hiding mine iniquity in my bosom

Hosea 6.7  But they like men (”Adam”, Strong’s H120) have transgressed the covenant: there have they dealt treacherously against me.

Luke 3:37 Which was the son of Mathusala, which was the son of Enoch, which was the son of Jared, which was the son of Maleleel, which was the son of Cainan,38 Which was the son of Enos, which was the son of Seth, which was the son of Adam, which was the son of God.

Romans 5:12 Wherefore, as by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death (notice that it doesn’t say SIN) passed upon all men, for that all have sinned:13 (For until the law sin was in the world: but sin is not imputed when there is no law.14 Nevertheless death reigned from Adam to Moses, even over them that had not sinned after the similitude of Adam’s transgression, who is the figure of him that was to come.—18 Therefore as by the offence of one judgment came upon all men to condemnation; even so by the righteousness of one the free gift came upon all men unto justification of life.19 For as by one man’s disobedience many were made sinners, so by the obedience of one shall many be made righteous.

1 Tim 2:13 For Adam was first formed, then Eve.14 And Adam was not deceived, but the woman being deceived was in the transgression.

1 Cor. 15:22 (About the physical resurrection) For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ shall all be made alive. —45 And so it is written, The first man Adam was made a living soul; the last Adam was made a quickening spirit.

1 Cor. 11:8 For the man is not of the woman: but the woman of the man.9 Neither was the man created for the woman; but the woman for the man.10 For this cause ought the woman to have power on her head because of the angels.

Acts 17:26 And hath made of one blood all nations of men for to dwell on all the face of the earth, and hath determined the times before appointed, and the bounds of their habitation;27 That they should seek the Lord, if haply they might feel after him, and find him, though he be not far from every one of us:

More verses which show that Genesis is valid as our true history

Jude 1:6 And the angels which kept not their first estate, but left their own habitation, he hath reserved in everlasting chains under darkness unto the judgment of the great day. —11 Woe unto them! for they have gone in the way of Cain, and ran greedily after the error of Balaam for reward, and perished in the gainsaying of Core.—14 And Enoch also, the seventh from Adam, prophesied of these, saying, Behold, the Lord cometh with ten thousands of his saints,

Matteus 23:35 That upon you may come all the righteous blood shed upon the earth, from the blood of righteous Abel unto the blood of Zacharias son of Barachias, whom ye slew between the temple and the altar.

Luke 11:51 From the blood of Abel unto the blood of Zacharias which perished between the altar and the temple: verily I say unto you, It shall be required of this generation.

Hebr.12:24 And to Jesus the mediator of the new covenant, and to the blood of sprinkling, that speaketh better things than that of Abel.

Hebr. 11:1 Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.2 For by it the elders obtained a good report.3 Through faith we understand that the worlds were framed by the word of God, so that things which are seen were not made of things which do appear.By faith Abel offered unto God a more excellent sacrifice than Cain, by which he obtained witness that he was righteous, God testifying of his gifts: and by it he being dead yet speaketh.By faith Enoch was translated that he should not see death; and was not found, because God had translated him: for before his translation he had this testimony, that he pleased God.

1 John. 3:12 Not as Cain, who was of that wicked one, and slew his brother. And wherefore slew he him? Because his own works were evil, and his brother’s righteous.

Death is an enemy

 1 Cor. 15:26 The last enemy that shall be destroyed is death.

God’s original intention could never have been that an ENEMY would roam around freely on earth, because an enemy is an intruder. Physical death is something hurtful both for man and animal, considering  all  the emotions and pain that are often involved. Getting old, sick and eventually die is usually connected with lots of tears and a number of people missing the deceased person. God’s idea of  ”very good” doesn’t involve any pain, tears and longing for friends or family members. Vegetation and insects, on the other hand, do not have such negative feelings (and probably not fish either) so they could still have been planned to die all along . They are most likely created to be included in the natural biological cycle where they die (or  wither away), and they feel no discomfort when they go through that process. It was never the intention for man to be meat eater, but of course God was prepared for that sin would arise which would lead to death, and if animals would start to die why not eating them? So the fact that we have pain and suffering in this world is due to the fall, and God certainly didn’t plan the fall.

God commanded man and animals to eat various herbs:

Man: every herb bearing seed, and every tree, in the which is the fruit of a tree yielding seed; to you it shall be for meat (Gen. 1:29)

Every beast, fowl of the air, and every thing that creepeth: (all that includes ”nephesh chayyah”): every green herb for meat (Gen. 1:30)

Man and land animals are referred to as ”creature that hath life” or ”living creature” which is ”nephesh” in Hebrew. See Gen. 1:20, 21, 24, and also Gen. 2:7 where Adam becomes ”a living soul” (nephesh chayyah). The expression shows that it concerns a certain category of living creatures that can breathe, and maybe with other characteristics – such as containing blood. Plants and flowers do not have such awareness or ability to breathe and feel pain, and they are not included in ”nephesh”. We can also read that ”the life of the flesh is in the blood” (nephesh)3 Mos. 17:11, 1 Mos. 9:4.  Adam’s job to give name to all animals also gives us further clues to what kind of animals are included in ”nephesh cayyah”. He gave name of every living creature – every beast of the field, and every fowl of the air – (nephesh chayyah) in Gen. 2:19.   After the fall, people were still not commanded to change their food sources. Meat was not allowed until Noah disembarked the Ark at Ararat, but it’s very possible that man still ate meat prior to this day.

Rom. 8:19 For the earnest expectation of the creature waiteth for the manifestation of the sons of God.20 For the creature was made subject to vanity, not willingly, but by reason of him who hath subjected the same in hope,21 Because the creature itself also shall be delivered from the bondage of corruption into the glorious liberty of the children of God.22 For we know that the whole creation groaneth and travaileth in pain together until now.

1 John 5: 19 And we know that we are of God, and the whole world lieth in wickedness.

Read this blog article about dinosaurs. 

There is only ONE Book of Life, and names can be REMOVED from it

bible 4There is ONE book of life, and that is the book of the lamb

Book” is a translation from the Greek word βίβλῳ (bibliō, Strong’s 976).

Only those who overcome the sins of this world will be clothed in white raiment, and they will not risk getting their names blotted out of  the book of life. It’s in the end of the ages where the Christians will get their new white clothes, and at that point they will no longer risk to get their names removed from the book of life – because they enter the kingdom of God and remain there for ever.

Revelation 3:4 Thou hast a few names even in Sardis which have not defiled their garments; and they shall walk with me in white: for they are worthy.5 He that overcometh, the same shall be clothed in white raiment; and I will not blot out his name out of the book of life, but I will confess his name before my Father, and before his angels.

Some people suggest that there are two books of life, and that the first book is a book into which everyone’s name is supposedly entered by default – the universal book of life. They suggest that the second book – ”The Lamb’s Book of Life”- is the book where only the true believers’ names are written and whose names will never be blotted out. The two-book proponents seem to reason that if a particular scripture passage speaks of names being added to the Book of Life, then this must be the Lamb’s Book of Life, but if a passage speaks of names being removed from the Book of Life, then surely it must be referring to the Universal Book of Life. Applying such selective reasoning is dishonest.

If people end up in the Universal Book of Life by default at birth (or at conception?), at which point will they be removed from this Universal Book of Life if they refuse to believe in Jesus Christ throughout their entire lives? Will they be removed as soon as they are adults (and remain unbelievers), and when exactly does this happen? And what if another person starts to believe in Jesus Christ when he is 50 years old. Does this mean he was in the Universal Book of Life the entire time before he turned 50, when he was also added in the Lamb’s Book of life? I suppose the two-book opponents couldn’t believe that a person can be removed from the Universal Book of Life at 15 (if he at this point refuses to accept Jesus as Savior) and then added again when he becomes a christian at age 50?

There is no Biblical evidence for two Books of life

The Bible does talk about books in plural that we will be judged by, but Daniel is referring to the books which record the deeds of every human being who has ever lived. Rev. 20:12 states that the dead are judged on the basis of the things written in the books which include their deeds, so these are not books of names but books of DEEDS, and these books of deeds are distinct from another book (singular) which in the same passage is called the Book of Life. If there are indeed two Books of Life, then it might have been helpful to know which one was being opened here – the book of the true believers, or the universal book of life? In reality, no such distinction needs to be made because there is only one book of life.  

Daniel 7:10 A fiery stream issued and came forth from before him: thousand thousands ministered unto him, and ten thousand times ten thousand stood before him: the judgment was set, and the books were opened. 

Revelation 20:11 And I saw a great white throne, and him that sat on it, from whose face the earth and the heaven fled away; and there was found no place for them.12 And I saw the dead, small and great, stand before God; and the books were opened: AND ANOTHER BOOK was opened, which is the book of life: and the dead were judged out of those things which were written in the books, according to their works. 13And the sea gave up the dead which were in it; and death and hell delivered up the dead which were in them: and they were judged every man according to their works. 14And death and hell were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death. 15And whosoever was not found written in the BOOK OF LIFE was cast into the lake of fire. 

Also Moses seems to believe there is only one book of life, because he refers to it as ”thy book which thou hast written”, and God lets Moses know that each person is responsible for his own entry in that book. God refuses to accept Moses’ ”blotting out” as a substitutionary offering for the sin of the people.

Exodus 32:30 And it came to pass on the morrow, that Moses said unto the people, Ye have sinned a great sin: and now I will go up unto the Lord; peradventure I shall make an atonement for your sin.31 And Moses returned unto the Lord, and said, Oh, this people have sinned a great sin, and have made them gods of gold. 32 Yet now, if thou wilt forgive their sin — and if not, blot me, I pray thee, out of thy book which thou hast written. 33 And the LORD said unto Moses, Whosoever hath sinned against me, him will I blot out of my book

If people are automatically included in the universal book of life, it wouldn’t be a big deal if also Clement and Paul’s other coworkers had their names there too along with every one else – so why even mention it?

Philippians 4:2 I beseech Euodias, and beseech Syntyche, that they be of the same mind in the Lord. And I entreat thee also, true yoke-fellow, help those women which labored with me in the gospel, with Clement also, and with other my fellowlabourers, whose names are in the book of life. 

Below is the only place, apart from Rev. 21:27, where the term The Book of Life of the Lamb” appears. It’s rather natural that the book of life belongs to the lamb, so the extra detail ”of the lamb” (Jesus Christ) must not be taken as a sign of that it’s a completely different book than the already mentioned ”the book of life”.  Jesus Christ is our Lord and Savior, and he will be judging all people according to their deeds. Compare the below passage with Rev. 17:8.

Revelation 13:And it was given unto him to make war with the saints, and to overcome them: and power was given him over all kindreds, and tongues, and nations.8 And all that dwell upon the earth shall worship him, whose names are not written in the book of life of the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world.9 After this I beheld, and, lo, a great multitude, which no man could number, of all nations, and kindreds, and people, and tongues, stood before the throne, and before the Lamb, clothed with white robes, and palms in their hands;10 And cried with a loud voice, saying, Salvation to our God which sitteth upon the throne, and unto the Lamb.

Maybe Rev. 17:8 is the passage that is most commonly used as an attempt to support  a universal book of life, since we can read ”the book of life from the foundation of the world”, but it’s the BOOK that is from the foundation of the world and not necessarily the names in it (before man even started to spread on earth). Word for word from the Greek it’s ”the names in the book of life from foundation of world”. Furthermore, it seems like ”the book of life of the lamb” in Rev. 13:8 is the same book as the one below in Rev. 17:8, even if the term there is only ”the book of life”, because both places talk about people who are not included in this book, and who are amazed (wonder, marvel) over this beast and even worship it. We can read about  ”the foundation of the world” in both accounts, and even a clarification in Rev. 13:8, that it’s the lamb that is slaughtered from the foundation of the world.

Revelation 17:The beast that thou sawest was, and is not; and shall ascend out of the bottomless pit, and go into perdition: and they that dwell on the earth shall wonder, whose names were not written in the book of life from the foundation of the world, when they behold the beast that was, and is not, and yet is.

If you don’t have your name in the book of life, you will ultimately be thrown in the lake of fire and that is true both when it comes to the book of life as well as the lamb’s book of life. Again, we are likely talking about the same book.

Revelation 20:1515 And whosoever was not found written in the book of life was cast into the lake of fire.

Revelation 21:27 And there shall in no wise enter into it any thing that defileth, neither whatsoever worketh abomination, or maketh a lie: but they which are written in the Lamb’s book of life.  

If a person could never lose his salvation, then he could absolutely afford to both add and delete things from the Book of Life and still get away with it, but clearly that would be a false assurance. A person can be disallowed from getting his promised PART of the Book of Life and OUT OF THE HOLY CITY, despite that he had an opportunity to receive such blessings to start with.

Revelation 22:18For I testify unto every man that heareth the words of the prophecy of this book, If any man shall add unto these things, God shall add unto him the plagues that are written in this book: 19And if any man shall take away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God shall take away his part out of the book of life, and out of the holy city, and from the things which are written in this book. 

Why would God need two books with names, and why would a universal book of life be referred to as the book of life and confuse honest Bible readers? It doesn’t make sense for God to automatically include people in a universal book of life despite knowing that he would he removing some of these names at a later occasion. It makes a lot more sense to have an opportunity to be included in the book of life (through repentance, faith and obedience) and also to risk deletion if we choose to live in sin.

Prophets or blood did not exist from the foundation of the world, even though we can read about them below in relation to their blood shed from the foundation of the world. Most people have no problem accepting this to be true without maintaining that prophets have been around since the very day of creation:

Luke 11:50 That the blood of all the prophets, which was shed FROM THE FOUNDATION OF THE WORLD, may be required of this generation

What about Psalm 69:28?

Ps. 69:28 Let them be blotted out of the book of the living, and not be written with the righteous. 

This verse cannot be compared with the verses of the book of life in Revelations, partly because it is a translation from Hebrew, and partly because we have to take into account that the book of Psalms often contains truths expressed in poetry, songs, parables, hyperboles etc. Still, this psalm confirms the picture of losing previous rights. In psalm 69 we can see David urgently praying for his safety to God, with many ”Let them …” and ”Let me …”, and he is speaking about his present situation and the distant future. David is concerned about his enemies who are working against everything that is good. He might have the picture of the civil lists of registers of the Jews in mind, and his feeling that his unrighteous enemies should not have the same rights as the righteous (Ez. 13:9, Jer. 22:30). At one point Jewish individuals and families were written in, but they could also be removed which normally occurred when they died. This system was evidently not about eternal souls but concerned the rights among the Jews living on earth. Do read more about the the house of Israel in the Bible.

The tree of life

We can also read about the ”tree of life” of course, and that’s the tree that we found in Eden and which we will also find in God’s new Jerusalem.

Revelation 2:7 He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches; To him that overcometh will I give to eat of the tree of life, which is in the midst of the paradise of God.

Revelation 22:2 In the midst of the street of it, and on either side of the river, was there the tree of life, which bare twelve manner of fruits, and yielded her fruit every month: and the leaves of the tree were for the healing of the nations.—14 Blessed are they that do his commandments, that they may have right to the tree of life, and may enter in through the gates into the city.

Jesus paid a high price as a sin offering for us, but he did not PAY for our SINS

In the parable in Matthew 18:23–35, we can see that the servant who had a debt (sin) to the King was LOOSED and FORGIVEN for it. The debt was REMOVED. TAKEN AWAY. No one offered to pay the debt for this servant but it was simply ERASED due to his pleadings. However, when the same servant later refused to forgive another person, then the same debt was back on the table yet again! Had the debt been paid for originally, then the King couldn’t request for yet another payment of a debt which is already paid and settled, regardless of any bad  behavior of the guilty servant. But we know that when we ask for forgiveness and repent, it’s our PAST sins that are forgiven and removed. Not our FUTURE sins. If Jesus had PAID for all our sins on the cross, then we would be BORN forgiven and saved. If we would sin, we could always suggest that we’re still safe since Jesus has already PAID for our transgressions, and this means we don’t have to. We could also suggest that we can actually serve two masters and still be saved, because our sins are already forgiven. We would actually be off the hook and free from punishment no matter what we did. Clearly this is not the true scenario. This is the parable:

Matt 18:23Therefore is the kingdom of heaven likened unto a certain king, which would take account of his servants. 24And when he had begun to reckon, one was brought unto him, which owed him ten thousand talents. 25But forasmuch as he had not to pay, his lord commanded him to be sold, and his wife, and children, and all that he had, and payment to be made. 26The servant therefore fell down, and worshipped him, saying, Lord, have patience with me, and I will pay thee all. 27Then the lord of that servant was moved with compassion, and LOOSED him, and FORGAVE him the debt. 28But the same servant went out, and found one of his fellowservants, which owed him an hundred pence: and he laid hands on him, and took him by the throat, saying, Pay me that thou owest. 29And his fellowservant fell down at his feet, and besought him, saying, Have patience with me, and I will pay thee all. 30And he would not: but went and cast him into prison, till he should pay the debt. 31So when his fellowservants saw what was done, they were very sorry, and came and told unto their lord all that was done. 32Then his lord, after that he had called him, said unto him, O thou wicked servant, I forgave thee all that debt, because thou desiredst me: 33Shouldest not thou also have had compassion on thy fellowservant, even as I had pity on thee? 34And his lord was wroth, and delivered him to the tormentors, till he should pay all that was due unto him. 35So likewise shall my heavenly Father do also unto you, if ye from your hearts forgive not every one his brother their trespasses.

When it comes to the animal sacrifice system in the OT, there are no verses which say anything close to ”sins were transferred to the animal”. Was the animal sacrificed OR punished? The animal certainly suffered and died as a result of the sin of man, but never did the animal become posessed by sin and die for those sins. This would imply guilt and that the animal was being punished for sins it did not commit. In the same way Jesus suffered and died because of man’s sin. He did not die because sin was transferred to Him, otherwise it would not be an adequate sacrifice. Rather than being an offering for sin and suffering an unjust death, he would have been punished for our sin which we know was not the case since He was without sin.

2 Cor. 5:21 For he hath made him [to be] sin for us, who knew no sin

Hebrews 10:8 — saying above, Sacrifices and offerings and whole burnt offerings and [sacrifices] for sin thou wouldst not, neither hadst pleasure therein.

It is not uncommon to the Scriptures to use the word ”sin” to refer to a ”sin offering” as the word ”sin” is translated ”sin offering” in numerous places throughout Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, Chronicles, Nehemiah, and Ezekiel, because the context of such passages is clearly referring to a sin offering and not an act of sin. In Leviticus alone, it is rightly translated as sin-offering over 50 times! The same is true in Hebrews 10:6-8 which is a quotation from Psalm 40:6. In the Psalm, the Septuagint also does not have the word ”sacrifice” in the text. Albert Barnes said To be sin – The words ”to be” are not in the original. Literally, it is, ”he has made him sin, or a sin-offering”Even a footnote in the ASV gives sin-sacrifice as the meaning, as do other translations. This view of the atonement, that Christ suffered our penalty and took our punishment, has inevitably lead to the errors of universalism, limited atonement, unconditional salvation, and once saved always saved. These conclusions cannot be logically denied if the premise is accepted that Jesus Christ took our punishment or suffered the penalty for our sins.

Gal. 3:13Christ hath redeemed us from the curse of the law, being made a curse for us: for it is written, Cursed is every one that hangeth on a tree

What is the curse of the law? Did the law of God ever demand for sinners to be crucified? No. In the civil government of Israel, the severest punishment of the law was stoning. Crucifixion was sanctioned by Roman law, but it was not sanctioned by Jewish law. Under the moral government of God, the severe punishment of the law is eternal hell. That is why the text says that Jesus suffer ”a curse” not sufferedthe curse of the law”. The curse of the law is what we are saved FROM; a curse is what he ENDURED. The curse of the law was SUBSTITUTED with a curse.”

Jesus Christ shed his blood ”for the remission of sins” (Matt. 26:28), but the Bible says that even after the atonement that sinners must still repent ”for the remission of sins” (Acts 2:38)

Jesus died to reconcile God and man (Rom. 5:10; Col. 1:21) but after the atonement we have the ”ministry of reconciliation” (2 Cor. 5:18) and after the atonement we are to tell men ”be ye reconciled unto God”(2 Cor. 5:20)

If Christ bore the sinner’s punishment as a Substitute, then the sinner is unconditionally free from it, for both the sinner and the Substitute cannot be justly punished for the same offence. The theory, therefore, leads necessarily to either universalism on the one hand, or unconditional election on the other. The truth is though that Jesus died on my behalf but did not take MY place on the cross.

The animal for a sin-offering had to be absolutely pure, without a blemish, all of which Jesus was. For Him to have become ”sin” in the sense of disobedience to God, He would have become a blemished sacrifice. The priests making an offering under the Law also had to be as spotless as the sacrifice they offered. Just so, Jesus as High Priest was ”holy, guileless, undefiled, separated from sinners, and made higher than the heaven … when he offered up himself,” Hebrews 7:26-27. Leviticus 16:22 says the scapegoat will ”bear … unto a land” the sins of the people. This was figurative, meaning to ”take away” sins, remove sins as is the likely definition of ”azazel.” The scapegoat symbolized the removal of sins. This is exactly the meaning to be attached to Jesus’ ”bearing our sins”.

Isaiah 53:4, 11-12.Surely he hath borne (nasa) our griefs, and carried (sabal) our sorrows … for he shall bear (sabal) their iniquities … and he bare (nasa) the sin of many, and made intercession for the transgressors.

Notice that the two words are used interchangeably.

Matthew 8:16-17And when even was come, they brought unto him many possessed with demons: and he cast out the spirits with a word, and healed all that were sick: that it might be fulfilled which was spoken through Isaiah the prophet, saying, Himself took our infirmities, and bare our diseases.

What Jesus performed in healing the physical diseases was the fulfillment of Isaiah 53:4, specifically that He bore (nasa) our griefs and carried (sabal) our sorrows. But, their diseases were not transferred to Jesus so that he then became a leper, demon possessed, blind, etc. Yet, he ”bore” their diseases in fulfillment of Isaiah 53:4 and he took away their diseases! The Greek word for ”bare” in Matthew 8:17 is bastazo, which is the inspired translation of nasa. Bastazo may mean to take up, to transport, to carry, to take away or to remove. In this figurative use, the emphasis is on the taking away, removal. The word for ”took” in this passage is lambano. It’s obvious in Matthew 8:17 that bastazo and lambano are synonyms and mean to remove.

Matthew 3:11 I indeed baptize you in water unto repentance: but he that cometh after me is mightier than I, whose shoes I am not worthy to bear (bastazo).

Seeing that the Holy Spirit gives us the meaning of nasa and sabal in Isaiah 53:4, why should we understand these words to mean any differently in Isaiah 53:11-12 when it says He ”bare their iniquities” or ”bare the sins of many?” This only tells us that He ”took away” the sins and iniquities, not that the sins and iniquities were transferred to him or imputed to him.

 Hebrews 9:26 …else must he often have suffered since the foundation of the world: but now once at the end of the ages hath he been manifested to put away sin by the sacrifice of himself … so Christ also, having been once offered to bear the sins of many, shall appear a second time, apart from sin, to them that wait for him, unto salvation,” , 28.

Verse 28 repeats the subject of verse 26 with a slight change of words. ”Put away” in verse 26 becomes ”bear” in verse 28. ”Sacrifice” in verse 26, becomes ”offered” in verse 28. Jesus bore our sins in that He took them away.

I Peter 2:24″—who his own self bare (anaphero) our sins in his body upon the tree, that we, having died unto sins, might live unto righteousness; by whose stripes ye were healed.

In this passage, the ”cross” replaces the altar as the place of sacrifice. The body of Jesus was offered up on an altar, an offering to God. The last sentein the Septuagint by anaphero. He ”shall bear (sabal/anaphero) their iniquities” and ”he bare (nasa/anaphero) the sin of many”. We have seen the meaning of nasa and sabal to be to take away. The same is true in an offering up of a sacrifice.

Isaiah 53:6 All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned every one to his own way; and the Lord hath laid on (paga) him the iniquity of us all

Paga is found in Isaiah 53:12 ”made intercession for the transgressors”. So, even in the context of verse 6, the same verb is used to mean ”intercession.” The Hebrew scholars who translated Isaiah 53:6 into Greek ”and the Lord gave him up for our sins”. The verb paredoken, from paradidomi, means to deliver up or intercede. Paradidomi is in the following two N.T. passages,

Romans 8:32 He that spared not his own Son, but delivered him up for us all, how shall he not also with him freely give us all things?

John 1:29 On the morrow he seeth Jesus coming unto him, and saith, Behold, the Lamb of God, that taketh away the sin of the world! 

 I Peter 2:24…who his own self bare (removed) our own sins in his body upon the tree

The fact that Jesus ”bore” our sins and iniquities does not mean our sins, guilt and punishment were transferred (imputed) to him. His death actually occurred but the terms used to describe what it accomplished are used figuratively.

1 Cor. 7:23 Ye are bought with a price; be not ye the servants of men.

Jesus indeed paid a high price for us because he gave up his LIFE for us! The price he bought us with was his life. It doesn’t say we are purchased unconditionally though. In the same breath Paul tells us to NOT be servants of men. What would happen if we disobeyed him and became servants of men (as in living for people instead of God)?

Partly from Jesse Morell and Mike DeSario