Tuesday, May 17, 2011
To Know The Truth
“Do not let your heart be troubled;
believe in God, believe also in Me.
“In My Father’s house are many dwelling places;
if it were not so, I would have told you;
for I go to prepare a place for you.
“If I go and prepare a place for you,
I will come again and receive you to Myself,
that where I am, there you may be also.
“And you know the way where I am going.”
Thomas said to Him, “Lord, we do not know where You are going,
how do we know the way?”
Jesus said to him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life;
no one comes to the Father but through Me. John 14:1-6
Hello my friends. The purpose of this post is to help those who are readers of this blog better understand my plans here for the coming year. With new readers now following each day, we now have 2 or 3 readers every hour 24 hours a day from all over the world. In only a little over a year, that is encouraging, since growth of followers has not been a primary goal. Originally Paradox Principles was an effort by me to memorialize writings that would speak to my small grandchildren in the future when they are adults. I wanted to leave them something that they could look at and say: this is Bob West, my grandfather. My hope is that my beliefs, personality, and character would become clearer to them as they read my words. This is especially important to me since I am at a distance from my grand-daughters, and with my ongoing health issues; one just never knows how long we have left here. That plan has now been accomplished with these writings. I will soon publish Paradox Principles in book form for the future review of my grandchildren.
Obviously, my greater desire was to fulfill my purpose and God’s will for me here in Christ; which is as an ambassador for Christ with a ministry of reconciliation. God has placed a desire in my heart for reading, writing, and meditating on His Word in my quest to gain His wisdom, understanding, and the Truth; and to share with others these Truths which He has revealed to me. What a blessing it is for me to be able to teach others. We will now move forward in an in depth study of the prophetic scriptures.
It is important that we always work to keep our thinking in context as we progress with these studies. So the question I would be asking, if I were you is: “what are Bob West’s qualifications to teach me regarding God’s Word?” That is a good question. The answer is: “from a worldly perspective; I’m just an average guy struggling to survive. I have no great seminary education, but I have been taught by some of the greatest Biblical scholars in America. I have read hundreds of books and listened to hundreds of lectures by Dallas Theological Seminary professors. My first pastor upon receiving Christ was Chuck Swindoll; clearly one of the greatest Biblical teacher/pastors of my generation. But more importantly than that, I have the guidance of God’s Word and the Holy Spirit in my quest for Wisdom and Truth. I know that I am of a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a person possessed by God, and that I am to proclaim the excellence of Him who has called me out of darkness and into His marvelous light. I have the power of the Holy Spirit inside of me. I am convinced that the Creator of the universe is literally speaking out to all through these posts. It is with that belief in mind that I will carefully now move forward with a detailed and chronological Bible Study of the end-times prophetic teachings that God has given all of us; so that we can better understand his plan. I will hold nothing back that is made clear; but I will try to refrain from inserting my personal opinions, beyond those which are clearly revealed by God in His Word.
Political correctness, tolerance, teachings of the world, and concern for the feelings of those teaching false religions are not important here. I do not want to offend, but will not compromise my mission and beliefs in tolerance of false beliefs. We are called to confront the lies of false religions and the teachings of men. I will continue to post as usual as well with my focus on Paradox Principles, spiritual growth, and learning to live the love of Christ; the reality in Christ that is foreign to most of us who have been trained in the ways of the worldly; and live in a world controlled by the forces of the evil one. Of course politics will also continue to be touched upon, especially as it relates to end times and conflicting values. But my continuing focus will be on those teachings in the scripture that are prophetic as they relate to the end times. Much of it is hard to believe, but as we see the prophecy and the continuing fulfillments … as a scientist friend of mine once said; “in light of the evidence, there is so much evidence … it would have been foolish for me not to acknowledge Jesus Christ as the Messiah, and receive His forgiveness and His free gift of eternal life.”
The Bible is not hard to understand. But people do have a habit of making it hard to understand. How do they do that? The tool that is used by our enemy to deceive us is to lead the unsuspecting into the practice of a belief system that is most prone to allegorizing and spiritualizing passages of Scripture. They tend to ignore a literal interpretation of the Bible. The trend is to appeal to and follow human logic and feelings, and the teachings of those that promote a religion of personal opinion. They see each person deciding what they believe for themselves; rather than God revealing His Truth to them through the Bible and the leading of the Holy Spirit.
This is consistent with our constitution and seems fair and right; but God has the only and the better way. Anyone can create a false story or allegory about anything they choose, out of context; and create a whole new meaning. As a result, we have thousands who create their personal definitions and beliefs; and the result is that there thousands of false religions out there, all calling themselves Christianity. Another deception is to take a principle that sounds or feels good, and find a verse out of context that supports the general idea … and once again promote the conclusion as Christianity. As mentioned previously, “context is critical to understanding God’s Truth” (read here about the Rule of Context)
In addition to the Rule of Context, the first and most important rule is the Golden Rule of Interpretation which states:
“When the plain sense of scripture makes common sense, seek no other sense; take every word at its primary, ordinary, usual, literal meaning, unless the facts of the immediate context studied in light of related passages and axiomatic (self-evident) and fundamental truths, indicate clearly otherwise.”
In other words, the scriptures should be taken literally, exactly as they are written, unless there is something there that indicates that we should consider something other than a literal interpretation. When we follow this law consistently, we are not only better able to understand the Truth, but also reject views that are leading us in the wrong direction and to wrong conclusions. The Bible is not hard to understand. But it is impossible if we follow those that make up their own truth all along the way.
Premillennialism, as a system, is based on a literal or normative method of biblical interpretation as opposed to Amillennialism which spiritualizes its interpretation and does not take the Bible literally. Our desire to understand “the WHY questions” which is so important to our inquisitive human nature, and this is where we often get ourselves into trouble. This is why paraphrases and the various Bible translations are helpful, but always need to be tested by God’s Word and the leading of the Holy Spirit. We will never understand the reasoning of the omniscient Creator of all things. But, understanding what he actually reveals is all we need to know.
For those who are serious about understanding the prophetic end-times revelations of our Creator, I suggest you purchase “The Footsteps of the Messiah” by Dr. Arnold Fruchtenbaum. It is an in-depth study of the Sequence of Prophetic Events. This is the most Biblically based; informative and complete study of the end times that I have ever read and has become one of my most treasured resources.
“Do not let your heart be troubled; believe in God, believe also in Me. “In My Father’s house are many dwelling places; if it were not so, I would have told you; for I go to prepare a place for you.”
God Bless you my friends, Bob