- This part really relates to the revolutions, which were generally accompanied by bloody wars. We follow a Master who has told one who was ready to defend Him: “Return thy sword to its place; for all who take the sword shall perish by the sword” (Matthew 26:52). The Lord’s instruction seems plain enough! Peter’s conviction to take up the sword flowed from genuine love for His Lord, there was nothing amiss with that, but genuine godly conviction can nevertheless very easily lead to a totally wrong action. And so we see this very frequently in history. Yet the Lord used it, but this does not excuse those who should have known better.
- The answer to this question is really simple: Do not take part in politics and you will have the separation that is needed. Lot tried to help control Sodom’s town council; he had no success in that, but his entire family life was a spiritual disaster! The Lord Jesus has been cast out because the world did not want this Man to reign over them. Are we now to appoint another one in His stead? Did our Master ever take part in politics? He bowed in everything to the authorities (there is no authority except from God) even to the evil ones as long as He Himself was not asked to do anything that would dishonor God, His Father.
- Your remarks show that you consider that your country has been established on Christian principles. Yet its basis was in rejecting the God-given authority of the English crown. True, those men spoke a good deal of God, but they showed by their actions that they greatly misunderstood what God wanted from them. Yet, here again, God used it for good, but also: that did not excuse those who should have known better.
- Your question assumes that the voting process was originally a Christian testimony. That which we wrote before already shows how questionable your assumption really is. But let me address the last part of that sentence. It would be wrong to say that all those who vote are knowingly seeking to alter God’s will. Whatever the outcome, good or bad as we might think it to be, it is allowed by God and He will use it to bring about a world condition that is ripe for judgment and the introduction of Christ’s millennial kingdom, the great ultimate event of God’s purpose with this sinful world. His reign will begin by severe judgment of all that man has set up – just as God took king Saul, the choice of the people, away in His wrath.
Ps. 19:1 The heavens declare the glory of God; and the expanse shows the work of his hands.
Ps. 97:6 The heavens declare his righteousness and all the peoples see his glory.
If he was speaking of Christ, we can read what the Lord said to the two on their way to Emmaus in Luke 24. He addressed them as being “senseless and slow of heart to believe in all that the prophets have spoken” before asking them: “Ought not the Christ to have suffered these things and to enter into His glory?” In asking this question the Lord intimated that had they believed the prophets they would have known that the Christ would suffer before entering into His glory. Peter in 1 Peter 1:11 also speaks of Christ’s sufferings “and the glories after these.” He says this by referring to the Old Testament Scriptures.
But possibly the speaker may also have referred to the experience of true Christians, not just the experience in our own lives, but as foretold in the New Testament. To begin with the Lord Himself said: “In the world you have tribulation” (John 16:33). This would be our lot before we will be glorified with Him. And in Romans 8:17 Paul writes that we are “heirs of God, and Christ’s joint heirs; if indeed we suffer with Him, that we may also be glorified with Him.” This shows that suffering before our being glorified is even an imperative for those who through faith have become children of God.
But some would say; But what about 1 Peter 3:18-20?
To answer this question we need to read especially verse 19, for this is often misunderstood. This has resulted in the wrong teaching that the Lord perhaps was then in prison. So here is what the context of verse 19 says: “Christ was…made alive in the Spirit, in which [i.e. in the Spirit] also going He preached to the spirits which are in prison.” Compare this verse with Colossians 2:5. “For if indeed in the flesh I am absent, yet I am with you in spirit.”
So then the Lord was not present in the flesh, just as now He is made alive in Spirit: we do not see Him, yet He is with us in Spirit. But so it was in Noah’s day He then, though absent in the flesh, preached in Spirit by the mouth of Noah to the spirits which are now in prison because they did not believe the words Noah spoke to them on the Lord’s behalf.
“Every scripture is divinely inspired, and profitable for teaching, for conviction, for correction, for instruction in righteousness; that the man of God may be complete, fully fitted to every good work” (2 Tim. 3:16-17).
But what benefit do the ages of these ancient people have for us? First of all, although all Scripture is meant for profit to man, this does not mean that we understand everything, nor is necessarily every piece of information given to us, for the benefit of us who live today. Still, the ages given in Genesis give us a clear picture of the age of the world. This, together with the creation account gives, to those who believe God, the assurance that the Theory of Evolution is not of God, but of man.
Jesus is at once presented in a twofold way. He is Son of David and therefore the royal crown that God originally bestowed on David belongs to Him. He is also Son of Abraham, therefore He has the title to the land and all the promised blessing is vested in Him. Having stated this, we are given His genealogy, from Abraham, through Joseph the husband of Mary. This would be His official genealogy, according to Jewish reckoning. The list given is remarkable for its omissions, since three kings, closely connected with the infamous Athaliah, are omitted in verse 8; and the summary as to the "fourteen generations," given in verse 17, shows that it is not an accidental omission, but that God disowns and refuses to reckon the kings that sprang more immediately from this devotee of Baal-worship.
Now Luke introduces His genealogy through Mary to show how really He is also Man. Matthew traces His descent down from Abraham, the depository of promise and David, the depository of royalty. Luke traces Him back to Adam and to God, for it is simply His Manhood that is the point and that was through Mary, for Joseph was only supposed to be His father. He is truly a Man, though the Son of God. He is the Second Man, the Lord from heaven, the One overflowing with the grace of God. F.B.H