Biola 1 BROADCASTER
Monthly Publication of the BIOLA FELLOWSHIP Vol. 5 No. 10 OCTOBER, 1965 CONTENTS ISR A E L: G O D 'S PEO PLE ............. 3 G O D 'S J U S T IC E .......................... 5 P O T T E R A N D C L A Y .................... 6 G O D 'S L O V E ................................ 7 R O C K O F O F F E N SE .................... 9 T H E C H U R C H 'S R A P T U R E .......... 11 T IM E O F T H E R A P T U R E ............ 13 T H E T R IB U L A T IO N .................... 16
T H E G R E A T R E U N IO N ........... 19 Q U E S T IO N S A N D A N S W E R S ......20 P A R A B L E S A N D P E A R L S ............2 7 T U E S D A Y -T H U R S D A Y S T U D Y ....32 STAFF President .................. S. H. SUTHERLAND Editor ................
.................. VIRGINIA LUBER
Photography .....................BILL EHMANN Printing .......................
Published monthly by the Radio Department BIBLE INSTITUTE OF LOS ANGELES 558 So. Hope St., Los Angeles, Calif. 90017
YOUR CHR IST IAN W ILL Did you know that there is a way to invest in Biola for the training ol students while saving costly estate taxes. Ultimately you may be able to leave more money for your loved ones. As a Fellowship member you are under no obligation when you write for information or counsel. BIOLA STEWARDSHIP DEPARTMENT
H O U R
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CAL IFO RN IA Arroyo Grande-San Luis Obispo KOAG 1280 Bakersfield-Wasco KAFY 550 KW SO 1050 Chico-Marysville KHSL 1290 Fresno-Dinuba KRDU 1130 KCIB 94.5 (FM) Lodi-Stockton KC VR 1570 Los Angeles KBBI 107.5 (FM) K T Y M 1460 Los Angeles-Long Beach KGER 1390 KGER 1390 8:30 8:00 8:30 9:00 11:00 10:30 Oxnard-Ventura-Santa Barbara KO XR 910 Redding-Red Bluff KQMS 1400 San Bernardino-Riverside K F X M 590 Santa Cruz
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SEPTEMBER RADIO MESSAGES
Qod’s People Israel
This Address: “The Sovereignty
Bible Conference Speaker Evangelical Foundation, JÉ Philadelphia, Pa.
T here have been many theological battles fought over one of the most blessed truths of the Bible, name ly, the sovereignty of God. While some men may shun this truth, the Apostle Paul emphasizes it over and over again. In Romans 9:16 we read, “So then it is not of him that willeth nor of him that runneth, but of God that showeth mercy.” (Verse 14 also should be studied in this connection.) Since some men feel they must contribute something to their salvation, they have not accepted these words in all the depth and truth the Holy Spirit has meant for them. If it were possible for us to save ourselves, or even to have the smallest fraction or part in our salvation, we would be the first to take all of the credit for it. Man is arrogant, proud, and selfish, doing everything in his power to steal the glory away from God. The Lord wants us to know that He alone is
God. In Ephesians 2:1-10 we see that salvation is all of the Lord and none of us. First of all, apart from Christ, we are dead in trespasses and sin. Second, we are all children of wrath. I submit that only a sovereign God could break through these barriers. This is exactly what the Lord has done in sovereign grace. The children of Israel should have learned this vital lesson. As an example, all barriers had to be broken concerning Pharoah’s willingness to let them leave the land. If Israel had taken any part in their miraculous deliverance, they would have been proud and boastful, no matter how little they may have done. This is shown, too, in Romans 9:17. ' In discussing the works of God we frequently hear scientists and philos ophers speak of “secondary causes.” They try to tell us that it wasn’t really God who formed all things. Men are 3
very loath to give God credit for His works. In Exodus 4 through 11 we note the various plagues befalling the Egyptians. At the end of this time there was no doubt in anyone’s mind that the God of Israel was the God of heaven and earth. The false deities of Egypt were powerless to help in any wise. Salvation thereby was brought to the house of Israel. This further illus trates Romans 9:18, “Therefore hath he (God) mercy on whom he will have mercy, and whom he will he harden- eth.” Don’t read this passage careless ly. Do not get the impression that God is sitting up in heaven making some people’s hearts favorable to Him and others to hate Him. Salvation is not some kind of a divine sport. The Lord never hardens hearts a r b itr a r ily . There isn’t a line in Scripture to sug gest such teaching. We rather see how God has every right to condemn people to hell, but rather, it is His eternal purpose to display His mercy and grace through His Son, Jesus Christ. In Genesis 6:3 we have a quotation of interest: “And the Lord said, my spirit shall not always strive with man.” This was because of the ex treme and gross wickedness of the human race. God hardened the hearts of men. This was not out of a mere
arbitrary caprice, for He is not will ing that any should perish. When hearts are tender they come to hear the Word. When people reject the truth and men live in sin, their hearts become hardened. The same sun that causes plants to grow and bloom will harden the clay with its continued bright rays. The sovereignty of God is a blessed truth by which to warm our hearts, to the end that we might bring forth precious fruit for the Lord Jesus Christ. SAVED TO SERVE There are some people only interested in working in the church if they can have the key job or be the committee chairmen. The Lord Jesus said, “Who soever will be great among you let him be your servant.” During the American revolution a sergeant was commanding a small squad of men giving them orders as they sought to hoist a large timber to the top of a military structure being repaired. Because it was so heavy the men were not quite able to lift it. The sergeant angrily shouted, “Come on, you men, get under that and heave! Strain a little bit; put your shoulders under it. That’s' the only way to get it up!” While not in his recognizable uniform, an officer happened by. He quickly observed that what the men needed was really another pair of hands. He asked the sergeant, “Why don’t you help your men? They’d have no trouble if another man lifted." Indignantly the pompous response was, “What do you mean ? I ’m in command! I’m the sergeant!" The unrecognized officer sa id no more. Dressed as a civilian he removed his hat and coat and joined the men. With his help the log was quickly raised. Then he spoke politely, “Mr. Sergeant, when you have another difficult job to do without enough men to help, just send for your Commander-in-Chief. I ’ll be glad to come back and serve." What a shock for the proud and arrogant sergeant. He had been giving orders to none other than General George Washington. God meas ures greatness not by expressions and sentiments but by acts of truly humble service. Go, labor on; spend, and be spent, What joy to do the Father’s will; It is the way the Master went, Should not the servant tread it still? —H. Bonar 4
Studying medical charts is but one phase of the unique preparation received by students enrolled in the Biota School of Missionary Medicine. Young people who are planning on foreign service for Christ have the opportunity of training in several of the major Southern California hospitals.
by Dr. Ralph L. Keiper
W hat would you say if you were asked to prove that God is really just? Romans 9:17 gives us a good basic understanding of this question, but let us take it in the proper con text. Paul has asked why it is that God finds fault. As some men have foolishly said, “If we can’t determine the course of our own actions why does the Lord find fault with us?” Taking the whole counsel of God into consid eration we see His sovereignty as well as our free will. The two are not in conflict whatsoever. As an example, the death of the Lord Jesus was deter mined from all eternity. It ultimately was brought about through Judas as the human agent carrying out the steps that led to Christ’s ultimate cru cifixion. God did not create Judas for these acts. He didn’t force him to per form such dastardly deeds. God holds every man responsible for his own individual acts. Man is a free agent as is indicated from cover to cover in Scripture. Man turns a deaf ear to the perfect counsels of God and says in essence, “Don’t interfere with me, I’ll run my life. I am the captain of my faith.” What a picture of rebel lion. The Holy Spirit will not always strive with the human race. Out of continual rebe llion and arrogance mens’ hearts are hardened. When Adam and Eve sinned, the first thing they did was to hide from God. It wasn’t man who sought God. The Lord said to Adam, “Where art thou?” He sought him in tenderness, mercy, and grace. When Adam realized his wicked state, realizing he was naked and bereaved of all blessing, God provided him with a covering, as well as with a promise of the Redeem er. Always, in the midst of judgment, God remembers mercy. Men are not willing to read and to heed the truth (Rom. 1:18). What are you doing with the truth ? Are you holding it down? If you know the
Lord Jesus Christ as personal Sav iour, are you walking in His way? As we see the tragedy and shame hard ness of heart brings upon people, let us pray for tenderness of spirit with TRAVELING W ITH GOD M y plans were made, I thought my path all bright and clear, M y heart with songs o'erflowed, the world seemed full of cheer. M y Lord I wished to serve, to take H im for my guide, To keep so close that I could feel Him by my side, A n d so I traveled on. But, suddenly, in skies so clear and full of light, The clouds fell thick and fast, the days seemed changed to night; Instead of paths so clear and full of things so sweet. Rough things and thorns and stones seemed all about my feet? I scarce could travel on. I bowed my head and wondered why this change should come. A n d murmured, "Lord, Is this because of aught I've done? H as not the past been full enough of pain and care? W h y should my path again be changed to dark from fa ir?" But still I traveled on. I listened, quiet and still, there came a voice, "T h is path is mine, not thine, I made the choice; Dear child, this service will be the best for thee and me, If thou wilt simply trust and leave the end to m e." A n d so we travel on. a willingness to be led by the Lord. May we hear Him say, “This is the way, walk ye in it.” There can be no other pathway of peace and blessing. 5
by Dr. Ralph L. Keiper
POTTER AND CLAY
S INCE the sovereign power a n d mercy of the Lord foolishly has been held to scorn by some, the Apos tle Paul gives us some excellent illus trations in Scripture through the in spiration of the Holy Spirit. In Ro mans 9:19-21 we find an excellent statement, “Thou wilt say then unto me, Why doth he yet find fault? For who hath resisted his will? Nay but, 0 man, who art thou that repliest against God? Shall the thing formed say to him that formed it, Why hast thou made me thus? Hath not the potter power over the clay, of the same lump to make one vessel unto honor, and another unto dishonor?” Man has always questioned God. Some falsely reason asking, “Why does God find fault if we have no power of our own?” While it is certainly true that God is absolute and powerful, this does not rule out man’s free will. The Lord gives to everyone a freedom of choice. We have the power to do good or to do evil. The Bible clearly tells us that God is not willing that any should perish. He has no delight in the death of the wicked. In the final analy sis man has the power to believe in Christ. God has decreed that certain things are to become true. He has ordained the means whereby they are to be ac complished. One of the ways by which the Lord has ordained that man should come to know Him is through personal choice and belief. Although man is responsible for his soul’s eternal des tiny, this does not take away from God’s absolute power and sovereignty. How can we question God? Are we as good as He is? Certainly we are not. It is unthinkable. We have an excellent picture of man’s heart de scribed by Job. Many false comforters had come to this saint bringing any thing but peace for his troubled soul. God intervened, and Job asked appro priately, “Shall he that contendeth
with the Almighty instruct him?” This is basically the same question Paul raised. Man is nothing more than a lump of clay. The prophet Isaiah uses this same figure of speech (Isaiah 64:8). Paul reveals man’s complete depen dence upon God. We are absolutely
TH Y WAY, NOT MINE Th y way, not mine, 0 Lord, However dark it be! Lead me by Thine own hand, Choose out the path for me. Smooth let it be or rough, It will be still the best; W in d in g or straight, it matters not, It leads me to T h y rest. I dare not choose m y lot, I would not, if I might; Choose Thou for me, my God, So shall I walk aright. The kingdom that I seek Is Thine; so let the way That leads to it be Thine, Else I m ight surely stray. Take Thou my cup, and it W ith joy or sorrow fill, A s best to Thee may seem; Choose Thou my good and ill. N ot mine, not mine the choice, In things both great or small; Be Thou my guide, my strength, M y wisdom, and my all.
— Horatius Bonar
powerless except for the Lord. The power of God can never be modified by any false power which man may think he possesses. It is wonderful for us to realize that God is still on the throne. He is sovereign and truly we can rejoice in Him.
by Dr. Ralph L. Keiper
N ot too long ago I was speaking on the subject of the sovereignty of God. After the meeting a young stu dent came to me and asked, “You have emphasized this one aspect tonight. I want to know, however, what the dif ference is between that and the aspect of fate as we find in many of the eastern religions and philosophies. There is very little question here. The complete difference is the love of God. In Romans 9 :33, “What if God, will ing to show his wrath, and to make his power known, endured with much longsuffering the vessels of wrath fitted (headed) for destruction.” Paul rightly points out that God has every right to show His wrath. Men have turned their backs upon Him from the very beginning of time. Basically, apart from Christ, men’s hearts are against God. Instead of revealing His wrath, however, the Lord endured with much longsuffering the vessels of wrath which can only be bound for perdition. Always, where man has been in rebellion against God, the Lord has been longsuffering and mer ciful toward him. The next verse (23) tells us, “And that he might make known the riches of his glory on the vessels of mercy, which he had afore prepared unto glory.” God’s great desire in the mani festation of His power is not to dem onstrate wrath, although at times this is necessary. He is a just and right eous God. Sin must be punished. The work in which God delights most of all is to demonstrate His glory and grace. Take a concordance and trace down the word “riches” someday. What a rewarding study. Going on we read, “Even us, whom he hath called, not of the Jews only, but also of the Gen tiles?” We must keep in mind the Old Testament background if we are to understand the significance of this verse. Originally Gentiles had no claim upon God, simply because they were
not members of the Covenant. For a Gentile to receive anything from God at all, he first had to become a Jew. When the Lord Jesus Christ came, however, this was all changed. John the Baptist proclaimed, “Behold the Lamb of God who taketh away the sin of the world.” The Gospel doors were thrown open. “Herein is love, not that we loved God, but that he loved us, and gave his Son to be the propitia tion for our sins.” Then in verses 25 and 26 we have two excellent illustrations from the Old Testament. “As he saith also in Osee (Hosea), I will call them my peo ple, which were not my people; and her beloved which was not beloved. And it shall come to pass, that in the place where it was said unto them, Ye are not my people; there shall they be called the children of the living God.” Hosea had married an adulteress. She symbolized the unfaithfulness of Is rael toward God. Hosea’s wife was absolutely nothing, but he made her everything. From this metaphor comes a great truth. Israel, having drifted away from God, was absolutely noth ing. Yet because of God’s great love
Charles Ivans of Encino, California, is one of the many Biola students who has the oppor tunity of playing on the beautiful Lansing Memorial pipe organ installed in Biola’smusic building.
for them, He made them His people. The Lord, in His marvelous love, holds on to the people. In sovereign grace He promises to bring them back to Himself. The day will come when a nation will be born in a day. God will claim Israel as His own even as He foretells in this picture from Hosea. Verses 27 and 28 give the illustra tion from Isaiah, “Esaias also crieth concerning Israel, Though the number of the children of Israel be as the sand of the sea, a remnant shall be saved: For he will finish the work, and cut it short in righteousness: because a short work will the Lord make upon the earth.” The day will come when the work will be cut short. This quota tion suggests the foundation of Is rael’s national salvation, even as it is the basis of our personal salvation today. H EAVEN 'S GIFT An interesting story of aviation is re counted by POPULAR MECHANICS magazine. A Mrs. Evy Rogers, living on Jamaica, was one day out in her back yard hanging up clothes. All of a sud den a wet, flopping fish dropped out of the clear sky. Since she had very little she just considered it a gift from heav en. It was in her frying pan that night. The miraculous delivery of a fresh fish, however, didn’t end there. It became the talk and mounting mystery of all Jamai ca. News spread far and wide, with most people doubting that it ever could happen. Then from Pan American Air ways word came declaring that the fish had evidentally “hitchhiked” on a flight of its New York bound clipper. As the plane had taken off from the bay, the fish had been securely caught in the acute angle formed by the after sup porting struts of the aircraft. The briny creature had probably wriggled free over Mrs. Rogers’ backyard scoring a near miss on her head. Jamaicans still talk about the unusual gift from• the sky. Think how many wonderful and practi cal gifts the Lord provides for us each day from heaven. The Saviour Himself, of course, is the paramount bestowment of God’s love gifts. Then, day by day He loads us with blessings and mercies. The next time the outlook is bad, try the uplook!
THE EARTHEN VESSEL The Master stood in H is garden, Am on g the lilies so fair, W h ich H is own right hand had planted. A n d trained with tend'rest care; H e looked at their snowy blossoms, A n d m ark'd with observant eye. That H is flowers were sadly drooping, For their leaves were parch'd and dry. " M y lilies have need to be watered," The heavenly M aster said, "W h e re in shall I draw it for them, A n d raise each drooping h e a d ?" Close, close to H is feet on the path way, A ll empty, and frail, and small, W as an earthen vessel lying, That seemed of no use at all. But the M aster saw, and raised it From the dust in which it lay, A n d smiled as H e gently whispered, " M y work you shall do today; Y o u are but an earthen vessel, But close you are lying to M e; You are small, but clean and empty— That is all one needs to b e !" So forth to the fountain He bore it, A n d filled it full to the brim; How glad was the earthen vessel To be of some use to Him. H e poured forth the living water A ll over H is lilies so fair, Till empty was the vessel, A n d again He filled it there. The drooping lilies he watered, Till all reviving again, The Master saw with pleasure H is labor had not been in vain; H is own hand drew the water, Refreshing the thirsty flowers; But He used the earthen vessel To convey the living showers. A n d then to itself it whispered, A s aside H e laid it once more, " I still will lie in H is pathway, Just where I did before; For close would I keep to the Master, A n d empty would I remain, Perchance some day H e may use me To water H is flowers again."
by Dr. Ralph L. ' Keiper
ROCK OF OFFENSE
S o m e o f o u r Jewish friends may consciously or subconsciously won der why the Gentiles obtained the righteousness of God on the one hand while Israel seemingly missed it on the other. Romans 9:30 asks, “How is it that the Gentiles came to know this wonderful truth?” Paul points out, however, that there is a basic difference to be established. Israel sought her own righteousness and the end thereof was spiritual and national death. They had a ritual of “do” while God’s law had been fulfilled in Christ and was “done.” Do not be fooled. There are many religions, some of them bearing the name Christian, which do not depend upon the Lord Jesus Christ for salva tion. They may pay Him lip service, however, their hearts are far from Him. There is one legalistic group today which, among other things, does not favor meat eating. Yet they evi dently enjoy meat since they go to extremes trying to find artificial sub stitutes. Man, by nature, can never keep the law of God. How foolish it is for Christians who have the opportunity to trust the Lord Jesus Christ with all their hearts, to fall into the same error as Israel. Israel had the law in tables of stone. It was always plain ly before them. Yet they still went their own selfish ways. They habitual ly shunned the law since it revealed to them how really far away they were from God. They tried to get around it by tradition and compromise. Ro mans 9 :30 to 32 reveals this all to us. God had made provision for Israel’s failure to keep the law, however, they were not interested. In a sense they “played tag” with the Lord. The Gen tiles knew they were excluded and were aliens. Yet to these the Lord Jesus Christ came to bring personal, individual, and eternal salvation. Man does not attain heaven through a
“do” religion, but rather based upon the completed work of Christ. The hymn writer had it correct, “Nothing in my hand I bring, Simply to Thy cross I cling. All for sin cannot atone, Thou must save and Thou alone. Rock of Ages, Cleft for me, Let me hide myself in Thee.” Here is where Israel stumbled. She did not know the Rock. This is the meaning of verse 33. Paul borrows a figure of speech from Isaiah 28:13-16. DON 'T CARRY THE BURDENS OF TOMORROW God broke our years into hours and days, That hour by hour, and day by day, Just going on a little way, W e m ight be able, all along, To keep quite strong. Should all the weight of life be laid Across our shoulders at just one place, A n d the future, rife with woe and struggle, M eet us face to face: W e could not go; Our feet would stop, and so God lays a little on us every day. A n d never, I believe, in all life's way. W ill burdens bear so deep, Or pathways lie so steep, But we can go, if, by G od's power, W e only bear the burden of the hour. The only way of salvation has been, is, and will always be, by faith alone. This is the Stone at which men stum ble today. To those of us who have accepted the Saviour we find Him tried and true. His oath, His covenant, His blood Support me in the whelming flood. When all around my soul gives way, He then is all my hope and stay. On Christ the solid Rock I stand, All other ground is sinking sand.
Folks have been converted, tribes have sought the Lord.
TEN FUTURE M ISSIO NAR IES Ten future missionaries heard G od's call divine; One was married wrongly; that left only nine. N ine future missionaries— they could hardly wait— M other needed one though; that left only eight. Eight future missionaries bound for God and Heaven; O ne got to m aking money; that left only seven. Seven future missionaries — if only each one sticks— One lost out completely; that left only six. Six future missionaries, for the Lord alive; One preached in the homeland; that left only five. Five future missionaries waiting an open door, One grew tired of waiting; that left only four. Four future missionaries bound for eternity, One no longer willing; that left only three. Three future missionaries — for the need how few— One the Board rejected; that left only two. Two future missionaries, a daughter and a son, O ne developed ulcers, that left only one. O ne future missionary- — thank the Lord for him! H e refused to ever let the vision dim. Body, soul, and spirit,, he to God did yield; Now for years h e 's labored pn the foreign field—
God in H eav'n rejoices, "B lessed child of M ine, You have done M y will — but what about the n in e ?" — Everek R. Storms THE PRAY ING HAND S The "P rayin g H a n d s" are much, much more than just a work of art, They are the 'so u l's creation' of a deeply thankful heart— They are a priceless masterpiece that love alone could paint, A n d they reveal the selflessness of an unheralded saint. These hands so scarred and toilworn, tell the story of a man W h o sacrificed his talent in accor dance with G od's plan. For in G o d's plan are many things man cannot understand, But we must trust G o d's judgment and be guided by H is hand. Sometimes He asks us to give up our dreams of happiness, Sometimes we must forego our hopes of fortune and success. N ot all of us can triumph or rise to heights of fame, A n d many times what should be ours, goes to another's name. But he who makes a sacrifice, so an other may succeed, 1$ indeed a true disciple of our blessed Saviour's creed. For when we 'give ourselves away' in sacrifice and love, W e are 'laying up rich treasures' in G o d's kingdom up above. A n d hidden in gnarled, toilworn hands is the truest art of living, Achieved alone by those who've learned the "V icto ry of G ivin g." For any sacrifice on earth, made in the dear Lord's name, M eans the giver has a place in Heav en's hall of fame. A n d who can say with certainty W here the greatest talent lies,
O r who will be the greatest In our heavenly Father's eyes!
Faithfully proclaim ing G od's own holy Word,
— Helen Steiner Rice
by Dr. Lehman Strauss
THE CHURCH'S RAPTURE
T hese are days when the whole realm of prophetic teaching has been thrown into confusion. Some Bible schools and seminaries have sought to explain away or to spiritu alize Scriptural passages which re late to our Lord’s second coming. While there has been an increased interest in p ro p h e tic teaching throughout evangelical circles, the liberals or neo-orthodox theologians have not had time for the subject. Peter declares, under the Spirit’s inspiration, “Knowing this first, that there shall come in the last days scoffers, walking after their own lusts, and saying, Where is the promise of his coming?” (II Peter 3:3-4). That the Lord Jesus is com ing again is generally admitted among all who accept the Bible as the inspired Word of God. One would hardly expect anything else since the Scriptures are replete with refer ences to this great event. The fre quency with which our Lord’s return occurs in the Bible is numbered in the hundreds. Considering the su b je c t, “The Rapture of the Church,” we need to define what we mean by “the Church.” Here is where confusion has existed. It is characteristic of some to assume that the word is all inclusive, synonymous perhaps with the terms “saint” and “elect.” This causes the erroneous conclusion that all saints, whether among Israel in Old Testament times, or those who are the redeemed in this present age, are automatically included. To be wrong in ecclesiology (the Church) will lead to erroneous interpreta tions in eschatology (end times). The Church had its beginning, with the descent of the Holy Spirit at Pentecost. The statement of our Lord to Peter is sufficient to show that the Church was not yet formed when Christ declared, “And I say
also unto thee, That thou art Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church ; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it” (Matthew 16:18). The Church is Christ’s. He is the head over it according to such verses as Ephesians 1 :22. Moreover, it is Christ who places us in His Church. The Church must stand upon His shed blood, according to Acts 20:28 and be sustained by His life, according to Ephesians 5 :23 to 32. The term “Church” then, as used by our Lord, applies to the body of redeemed saints in this present dis pensation. The Christian usage of the word is distinct from both the Jewish and the heathen. A passage bearing this out is taken from the inspired writing of Paul in I Corin thians 12:13, “For by one spirit are we all baptized into one body, wheth er we be Jews or Gentiles, whether we be bond or free; and have been all made to drink into one Spirit.” It is apparent that a new thing has been formed into “one body” of which He is the head. This relation-
Biola student George Jones has the opportunity of working his way through school as he serves on the maintenance staff caring for some of the many lawns about the campus. Water is drawn from a small creek which flows through the Campus to irrigate some of the fields.
ship of the members of the body to the Head is true of every believer in Christ. The Church had her commence ment at Pentecost and she will con tinue on earth until Christ comes to take her unto Himself. This event we call the Rapture and will be the next event in God’s g r e a t prophetic drama of the end times. While the word “rapture” does not appear in the Bible, it comes from a Latin word meaning “to catch up,” “to seize,” “to snatch away.” There is associated with this word the ad ditional idea of ecstasy and delight. This is the Christian’s blessed hope referred to in Scripture as a sure and steadfast hope. The idea of the Rapture is not an isolated fact in the Bible. There are striking, typical illustrations of it found elsewhere in Scripture. We read in Genesis 5:24, “And Enoch walked with God: and he was not; for God took him.” In Hebrews 11:5 we have a commentary on this, “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.” He was a man of like passions with us who was raptured to heaven without experiencing death. Genesis 5 is an interesting and informative chapter. Before arriving at the verse which tells of Enoch’s translation, we read the names of six men who went before him. About each one it is written, “and he died.” Enoch, the seventh in order, did not die. In stead he was caught up alive to heaven before God’s judgment upon the earth through the flood. What God did for Enoch He is going to do for a whole generation of Christians one of these days. He was transferred alive from earth to heaven. The other day I was trans ferred bodily from Miami to Detroit. I stepped into a jet plane and three hours later I arrived at my destina tion. It didn’t take the Lord that long to transfer Enoch! Enoch was
translated by faith (Heb. 11:5). To the unbeliever this whole idea of the rapture sounds preposterous and un believable. Yet we Christians know it will come to pass because God said it would. By faith we look for our Lord to come in the air and take us to be with Himself. Another typical illustration of the Rapture is to be found in the trans lation of Elijah. In II Kings 2:11 we read, “And it came to pass, as they still went on, and talked, that, behold, there appeared a chariot of fire, and horses of fire, and parted them both asunder; and Elijah went up by a whirlwind into heaven.” What an honored departure this Old Testament saint experienced. The record stands as a grand prophecy of what will happen to those saints who are living on the earth when the Saviour comes for His Church. We can look forward to a translation far more wonderful than that of either Enoch or Elijah. With a mighty throng, we shall be caught up to meet the Lord in the air. How much bet ter it is to leave the departure from this earth with God. The other Scriptural illustration of the Rapture to which we call your attention is that of the Lord Jesus Christ Himself. When He was taken up to heaven on the day of His ascension we read in Acts 1:9, “And when he had spoken these things, while they beheld, he was taken up; and a cloud received him out of their sight.” Christ is the first fruits while the Church will follow as the harvest. May we be found, “Looking for that blessed hope and the glorious appear ing of the great God and our Saviour, Jesus Christ.” M EN T A L BALANCE A well known medical specialist de clared at a doctor’s convention, “As one whose whole life has been concerned with the sufferings of the mind, it is my view that all the hygienic measures to counteract disturbed sleep, depression of spirits, and the various miserable sequels of a distressed mind, I would under score in first place the importance of the simple habit of prayer." 12
by Dr. Lehman Strauss
TIME OF THE RAPTURE
W hile the B ible clearly tells us of the Rapture of the Church, Revelation 11 deals with another rap ture. This will occur during the Trib ulation, after the Church has been caught up to heaven to be with Christ. This specific “catching away” in the last book of the Bible consists of God’s two witnesses. They testify for three and a half years after which time they are killed and their bodies remain in the streets for three and a half days. Then they are miraculously restored to life by God. In verse 12 we discover, “And they heard a great voice from heaven saying unto them, Come up higher. And they ascended up to heaven in a cloud; and enemies beheld them.” It may well be that these two are none other than Enoch and Elijah. We are not dogmatic on the point, however, both were prophets of judgment. Since neither died, it could be that God permits them to die and then to be raised and raptured a second time. The fact remains, however, that we have here the divinely in spired prophecy of a future rapture. To spiritualize the passages in the Bible telling of the Rapture makes Scriptural language of no signifi cance and the verses must be dis missed as meaning nothing at all. The coming again of Christ will be as He went, personally, bodily, liter ally, and visibly. So He will come, and so we will go up to be with Him. Thinking of the Rapture of the Church, the entire Church is in view. It is not a partial rapture. All believers in this present Church Age will be resurrected and translated at Christ’s coming in the air. There are those who teach that the body of Christ will be divided into two or more groups. They say that those to be caught up first will be the zeal ous Christians who were working, waiting, and watching for the Lord
to return. The partial rapturists seize upon a number of Scriptures in support of this view. We will ex amine several so that you may be come acquainted with the general idea. Matthew 24:36-51 is one sec tion and should be read carefully in its entirety. It is essentially an ex hortation to preparedness and readi ness. The key word is “watch.” But this passage does not refer to the Church at all. It speaks of Israel during the Tribulation. The return of Christ here is His second coming to the earth at the end of the Tribu lation. When Christ comes to this earth the second time, those who re main will enter into the blessing of the Millennium. In II Timothy 4:8 we read , “Henceforth there is laid up a crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, shall give me at that day: and not to me only, but unto all them also that love his ap pearing.” The partial rapturists see this v e rse as showing that the “catching away” is the reward of
Biolagraduate Eddie Wagner, well-known evan gelist, was a recent guest on the radio broad cast. Rev. Wagner is available for specialmeet ings and now makes his home in Southern California. He may be contacted through the Alumni office.
which Paul speaks. Those who do not love Christ’s appearing will be left to go through the Tribulation. In ac tuality, however, Paul was approach ing death as he points out in earlier verses. The crown is one of the five to be given as rewards at the judg ment seat of Christ. The passage, however, says nothing about the Rap ture as being part of the reward. All believers in Christ will be caught up together at one time. Then the re wards will be apportioned. One last verse I want you to see in this regard is Luke 21:36, “Watch ye therefore, and pray always, that ye may be accounted worthy to es cape all these things that shall come to pass, and to stand before the Son of Man.” Some have distortedly in terpreted this to mean that some will be translated before the Tribulation while others will be left. Notice, however, that the Rapture is not men tioned or inferred in the entire con text. The signs here occur at the time when the Son of man returns to set up His millennial kingdom. The partial rapture theory condi tions the event upon human works, as opposed to the principles of grace. It also divides the body of Christ which is in opposition to Paul’s con sistent teaching of unity. Finally, it precludes a partial resurrection of those Christians who have died. This is why the theories are unthinkable. If I am to be saved from the great Tribulation, by virtue of my person al achievements and spiritual fitness, I will most certainly go through the tribulation, and indeed, I would be lost forever. Thank God, however, I am saved and kept by grace through faith, awaiting the return of the Lord Jesus Christ to rapture me unto Himself and to the place He has prepared for me. Salvation is all of grace from start to finish. The exact time of the Rapture is not known. Setting of dates for this event has been one of the gross er rors of some unthinking teachers and writers. We do not hesitate to make this statement, however, that the Rapture is the next major event
One of the most faithful members of the Biola staff for more than 15 years is Miss Doris Wetzler, administrative assistant serving in the President's office. Each month she has freely given of her time to prepare dinner for the members of the Board of Directors, which is where our photographer caught her for this picture.
in God’s prophetic program. There are certain unmistakable signs He has given us in His Word. The fact of His coming is certain while the exact time may be uncertain. When our Lord discussed with His disci ples His coming for His own, He used the language of eminency. Look at His promise in John 14:1-3, “Let not your heart be troubled: ye believe in God, believe also in me. In my Fa ther’s house are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto myself; that where I am there ye may be also.” There are no intervening events between Christ’s going to the Fa ther’s house in heaven and His re turn to take His own from earth to heaven. This was undoubtedly a new revelation to His disciples. They had been looking for Christ to establish His kingdom on earth right then. They wanted to share with Him in His reign. Even after the Lord’s resurrection, the disciples continued asking Him if He would at that time restore the kingdom to Israel. Their hope was entirely different from the hope of Israel as a nation. It was personal, even as ours must be today. 14
There are those who teach that the next event in God’s prophetic program is the Tribulation, indicat ing that the Church must go through this terrible period of God’s wrath. We must strongly reject this view. There is no denying that Christians experience severe trials in this life. In that sense there is tribulation in this world (John 16:34). But this is not the specific seven-year period known as Daniel’s 70th week. It will commence after the Church has been raptured. We will consider the purpose of the Tribulation in another study. It is totally unrelated to the Church. Assurance on this point comes from such verses as Romans 5:9, “Much more then, being justified by his blood, we shall be saved from wrath through him.” Again in Romans 8:1, “There is therefore now no con demnation (or judgment) to them which are in Christ Jesus.” A fur ther reference is I Thessalonians 5:9, “For God hath not appointed us to wrath, but to obtain salvation by our Lord Jesus Christ.” And from Revelation 8:10 we read, “Because thou hast kept the word of my pa tience, I will also keep thee from the hour of temptation, which shall come upon all the world, to try them that dwell upon the earth.” Are you ready for the Rapture? Do you know the Lord Jesus Christ as your personal Saviour? “For if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.” FOLLOW ING BEARS An elderly couple had been known for their harmonious lives. When asked the secret of their success they replied strangely, “Two bears did it! All we did was to follow them, we’re told about them in the Bible. By heeding the bears we’ve never needed to worry about hatred, distrust, jealousy, envy, and malice within the human heart." And what are those two bears? “Bear one another’s burdens ,” and “Forbearing one another in love."
Dr. Ray A. Myers, chairman of the Biota Board of Directors, is alwaysin attendance at the organizations' meetings. Several ofhis children and grandchildren haveattended the school. His faithful ministry for the Lord at Biola has extended over a period of more than three decades.
* * If you don't learn anything from your mistakes there's no sense in making them. *
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■ by Dr. Lehman Strauss as the essential and basic fact of the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. The man who lacks assurance about the death and resurrection of Christ will have no assurance about his own resurrection and rapture. The reasoning here is logical. The Christian’s hope is not the outgrowth of some philosophical area of reason ing; it is the result of the actual death and literal bodily resurrection of the Saviour. “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, which according to his abun dant mercy hath begotten us again unto, a lively hope by the resurrec tion of Jesus Christ from the dead” (I Peter 1:3). There will not be a single believer who has died who will be left in the grave when Jesus comes. Christ’s own resurrection is the pledge of ours. “But if the Spirit of him that raised up Jesus from the dead dwell in you, him that raised up Christ from the dead shall quicken your mortal bodies by his Spirit that dwelleth in you” (Romans 8:11). “And God hath both raised up the Lord, and will also raise up us by his own power” (I Corinthians 6:14). “But now is Christ risen from the dead, and become the first- fruits of them that slept. For since by man came death, by man came also the resurrection of the dead. For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ shall all be made alive” (I Corin thians 15:20-22). In verse 15 we rejoice to contem plate, “For this we say unto you by the word of the Lord.” The phrase does not mean that what Paul has written about the Rapture consti tutes a hitherto unknown quotation, but rather Christ’s own testimony. There are some verses in Matthew 24 resembling the Rapture, however, they are actually p o s t-R a p tu re 16
THE TRIBULATION T here are a number of descrip tive passages in the Bible giving us an excellent picture of the Rap ture. One of the best is I Thessalo- nians 4:13-18. While the entire epis tle contains repeated references to these future events, these six spe cific verses contain the doctrine of the Rapture stressed with emphasis. In verse 13 we find the statement, “But I would not have you to be ig norant, brethren, concerning them which are asleep, that ye sorrow not.” When the apostle was in Thes- salonica he had doubtless preached concerning Christ’s return. In the meantime, however, some of the be lievers had died. This no doubt left certain ones with questions about their friends. Apparently no teach ing had been left them as to the re lation of the Rapture to the resur rection of the dead. Would those who had died miss some of the bene fits of the Rapture? Would the liv ing saints at the Rapture ever see their loved ones again? Whenever ignorance prevailed the apostle Paul invariably used the for mula, “I would not have you to be ignorant.” The subject concerned those who were asleep. Wherever the word “sleep” is used in the Bible, it is the death of a believer only. It does not refer to an unbeliever. Sleep also refers to the body. As slumber is known to be temporary, so the death of the body will not be permanent. Sleep has its waking while death will have its resurrec tion. In verse 14 we find, “For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so them also which sleep in Jesus will God bring with him.” (The word “if” re a lly means “since.”) The condition being true, the result is also true. The hope of Christ’s coming for His own, wheth er they be dead or alive, is as sure
of dying before the coming of the Lord. In verse 16 we read, “For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God.” This gives us the literal bodily return of Christ. The word “himself” is in the emphatic posi tion in the sentence. This means that no one else but the Lord Him self will usher in this great event. The two witnesses said, “This same Jesus, which is taken up from you into heaven, shall so come in like manner as ye have seen him go into heaven.” When a believer dies he goes to be with Christ; Christ does not come to him. The Lord who re turns is the same Jesus who died and rose again. It was Christ’s body, not a spirit, which was buried in Jo seph’s tomb. It was a body that was received up into heaven. It is the same body that shall descend from heaven. The phrase, “the dead in Christ,” is synonymous with “them also which sleep in Jesus.” Now observe closely the reference is not to all the dead but only to the resurrection of the dead in Christ or to believers only. A point to be made is that there is no reference to the resurrec tion of the unsaved. They shall be raised but not at the resurrection of the saved; not at the Rapture. Jesus said, in John 5:28-29, “Marvel not at this: for the hour is coming, in the which all that are in the graves shall hear his voice, And shall come fo rth ; they that have done good, unto the resurrection of life; and they that have done evil, unto the resurrection of damnation.” Here two distinct resurrections are men tioned. Before the Rapture some will come forth to the resurrection of life. After the Tribulation some will come forth unto the resurrection of damnation. Those who teach one general resurrection are in error. Every individual whoever lived will be raised physically, saved or not saved. 17
Miss Helen While, who has worked in various departments of Biola since the twenties, was recently honored at a special staff luncheon upon her retirement. With her are Mr, James Bramer, Controller, and Mr. James Canning. We thank the Lord for the faithfulness of those whom He has sent to be a part of the Biota family.
scenes. It is more likely that this truth concerning the Rapture and the resurrection was given to Paul by direct revelation. This shows the plenary inspiration of the Scriptures. The Holy Spirit revealed these im portant things to him. This particular revelation cleared up a number of matters. Among them was the one being that, “we which are alive and remain unto the coming of the Lord shall not prevent them which are asleep” (verse 15). It might seem that living ones at the time of the Rapture would have a “head start” on those who were in their graves. They would have six feet more to travel. The living, however, shall not prevent (which means “precede” or “go before”) those who have died. Contrariwise those who have been laid away in their graves will have the precious privilege of going on ahead. It seems more than a mere possibility that Paul was looking for the Rapture during his own lifetime. He be lieved that it was eminent and that it could take place at any moment. Still he refused to commit himself to date-setting. The same should be true with us today. We dare not overlook the fact that Paul spoke freely of the alternative possibilityPage 1 Page 2 Page 3 Page 4 Page 5 Page 6 Page 7 Page 8 Page 9 Page 10 Page 11 Page 12 Page 13 Page 14 Page 15 Page 16 Page 17 Page 18 Page 19 Page 20 Page 21 Page 22 Page 23 Page 24 Page 25 Page 26 Page 27 Page 28 Page 29 Page 30 Page 31 Page 32 Page 33 Page 34 Page 35 Page 36
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