Predestination – Two Trains Gk: pro-orizo – to sketch out beforehand like the drawing of an architect The directions of the Two Trains are determined beforehand, sketched out in advance. It has been pre-arranged that all who follow Christ will go to Heaven It has been pre-arranged that those who follow the Devil will end up in the Lake of Fire But who you follow is up to you – which is why we must preach the gospel to those who are lost to give them the chance to join us on the Heaven-Bound Train
The Salvation Bell Curve People have differing levels of spiritual sensitivity – spiritual senses such as our heart and our spiritual eyes and ears… Some are very spiritually sensitive and take to the gospel quickly (John the Baptist) Other are greedy, cruel and hardened (Pharaoh, Judas) The bulk of people are ‘somewhere in-between’ during revivals they become more spiritually sensitive and follow God but during apostasy they become deceived and fall away. The ability of people to be saved is directly proportional to their ability to receive and understand God’s Word Matthew 13:14-17, Acts 28;25-28, Hebrews 5:14
Predestination vs. Free Will In the bar of silver the individual free- floating electrons move randomly and have free will But the voltage of the overall bar of silver is precisely determined “predestined” God can control history very precisely despite our individual choices and without over-riding our free will and our ability to choose Him and to love Him Predestination and free will can co-exist at the same time!
Predestination Summary God can control history while allowing us a free will choice The biggest choice we make is whether we will believe in Jesus and follow Him This choice has a predestined result – Heaven for one choice, Hell for the other and there is nothing in-between Our ability to make that choice depends on our spiritual sensitivity to God so we must open our hearts and minds to Jesus and listen to him as His disciples!
Easter & Other Festivals… Two views: a) Psalms 16:4 MKJV Their sorrows shall be multiplied who run after another god. I will not pour out their drink offerings of blood; and I will not take their names on my lips. b) Is not a rose just as sweet by any other name? (In other words what you call God or a festival does not matter)
The Radical NT View The New Testament does not have the disciples praying using the specific name of a God – like Baal or even to Elohim or to YHWH or to Jehovah God does not dwell in temples made by human hands! (Even the Jewish Temple) (Isaiah 66:1,2 Acts 7:48, 17:24 It goes far beyond tribal or national religions The apostles pray to the Father, in the name of Jesus, and in the power of the Holy Spirit – e.g. Ephesians 3:14-21
The Radical NT View - 2 Even the names of the days of the week are converted to ‘neutral’ numbers e.g the first day of the week, the seventh month etc. Neither Jewish or pagan names are used All festivals seen as a danger to faith, especially when part of a religious calendar Galatians 4:10, 5:1-11 Colossians 2:8-23 We do not observe the systems of human religion, we instead have a direct relationship with the Father.
Host Of Heaven ( צבא השּׁמים, c e bhā' ha-shāmayīm): The expression is employed in the Old Testament to denote (1) The stars, frequently as objects of idolatry (Deu_4:19; Deu_17:3; 2Ki_17:16; 2Ki_21:3, 2Ki_21:1; 2Ki_23:4 f; Jer_8:2; Jer_19:13; Zep_1:5), but also as witnesses in their number, order and splendor, to the majesty and providential rule and care of Yahweh (Isa_34:4; Isa_40:26, “calleth them all by name”; Isa_45:12; Jer_33:22); and (2) The angels (1Ki_22:19; 2Ch_18:18; Neh_9:6; compare Psa_103:21). (1) Star-worship seems to have been an enticement to Israel from the first (Deu_4:19; Deu_17:3; Amo_5:26; compare Act_7:42, Act_7:43), but attained special prominence in the days of the later kings of Judah. The name of Manasseh is particularly connected with it. This king built altars for “all the host of heaven” in the courts of the temple (2Ki_21:3, 2Ki_21:5). Josiah destroyed these altars, and cleansed the temple from the idolatry by putting down the priests and burning the vessels associated with it (2Ki_23:4, 2Ki_23:5, 2Ki_23:12). (2) In the other meaning of the expression, the angels are regarded as forming Yahweh's “host” or army, and He himself is the leader of them - “Yahweh of hosts” (Isa_31:4, etc.) - though this designation has a much wider reference. See ANGELS; ASTRONOMY; LORD OF HOSTS; compare Oehler, Theol of Old Testament, II, 270ff (ET).
Emergent Church Tries to re-invent church so it is ‘more relevant’ Unfortunately tends to question the Scriptures and their authority At its best is very accepting of the marginalized in society But tends to merge with the New Age and other beliefs Has basically become a branch of the old ‘liberal’ theology of the 1920’s