Pro and Con 45

Incoming Email, uploaded 12-20-97

First, I am concerned about the person in Pro/Con 44 who said the bar codes could not possibly have the 666. If not, then why is it that whenever the variable 'No. 6' occurs on the right half of the bar code, it is always identical to the three constant separators.

In other words, if the two parallel lines always mean '101' and is always the decimal equivalent of '5', then it would also hold true within the variables as well. But we all know that it doesn't. Thus, since the three constant separators always match the '6' on the right side of the bar code, it seems they should also be recognized as 6-6-6 as well. Any comments?

Also, the person who spritualized the second coming of Christ in Pro/Con 42 completely astonished me. It was a sad thing to read about someone giving up on our blessed hope. While reading this, I immediately thought of something that he and others might want to consider.

Two men in white appeared to the disciples right after Jesus ascended and spoke to them this message:

"Ye men of Galilee, why stand ye gazing up into heaven? This same Jesus, which is taken up from you into heaven (physically/bodily, for they touched Him, ate with Him etc.), shall so come IN LIKE MANNER (not in a different, spiritual manner) as ye have seen Him go into heaven." (Acts 1:11)

I can't imagine anyone after seeing this continuing to hold to a spiritual return that is already fulfilled.

My reply

I should ask the people that make bar codes, but I have been so busy...

I should have quoted the scripture you did about Christ's coming in like manner. It would have carried more weight than my words. Thanks.

Incoming Email

You refer to "eternal security" only twice on your website; once in 'Pro and Con 5', where you say: "He doesn't believe in eternal security either, but Jesus said, "And this is the Father's will which has sent me, that of all which he hath given me I should lose nothing, but should raise it up again AT THE LAST DAY" John 6:39. Wouldn't you say that there is a chance that we do have eternal security?" (Unquote)

And once again in 'Pro and Con 13', where you are asked: "Does eternal security play a part, and if not, in your opinion what constitues an unconfessed sin?" You answered by saying" "Eternal security comes into place in the second Rapture. At that time, at the end of the shortened Tribulation just before the Wrath of God is poured out (therefore Pre-Wrath), all members of the Body of Christ will be in Heaven." (Unquote)

I take for granted that you do believe in the eternal security of the believer in the church age. Concerning the Laodiceans Christians that are spued out of His mouth (Rev.3:16). If I understand you correctly you say that they become Tribulation saints. Does that mean they lose their position in the Body of Christ when they are spued out? If they then become Tribulation saints, does the same rules apply for them then as before the Rapture?

The Scripture PLAINLY says, "If ANY MAN worship the beast and his image, and receive his mark in his forehead, or in his hand, The SAME shall drink of the wine of the wrath of God, which is poured out without mixture into the cup of his indignation; and he shall be tormented with fire and brimstone in the presence of the holy angels, an in the presence of the Lamb: and the smoke of their torment ascendeth up for ever and ever: and they have no rest day or night, who worship the beast and his image, and WHOSOEVER receiveth the mark of his name." (Rev.14:9-11). Let's say they get hunger and decide to take the mark of the beast just to eat--does that mean they LOSE THEIR SALVATION the same as anyone else would that then took the mark of the beast? Does that mean that a Laodicean Christian can then LOSE THEIR SALVATION? What does that do to eternal security? What about people that are saved after the first Rapture during the Tribulation period--do they also have eternal security or can they lose their salvation by taking the mark of the beast? Is eternal security only for the saints during the church age? What about saints of other ages before the church age--or even afterwards, can they lose their salvation also? The Scriptures seems to indicate that the Holy Spirit came and went from believers before the present church age. I would be very interested in knowing WHAT you believe concerning these things and more importantly WHY you believe them. I used to say that you could tatoo me from head to toe and that would not cause me to lose my salvation--what do you think?

Another question, when does the last member of the Body of Christ come into the Body? When is the Body of Christ completed? When does the fulness of the Gentile (Rom.11:25) come in? When does God stop adding people to the Body of Christ and start adding them to the next thing? Can He add them to more than one thing at the same time? The first members of the early church were Jewish Messianic believers and yet they were a part of the Body of Christ at the same time. Will it be something like that again during the Tribulation--in reverse? That Jewish world died on the cross but wasn't buried until 70 AD. (Heb.8:13). There was an overlap during the change over between 30 AD and 70 AD. In the church age between the coming of the Holy Spirit unto the Rapture, both Jews and Gentiles are on equal footing before God. The ground is level before the Cross. Even though they did not know or realize it until after Paul explained it to them.

I don't know very many that I would trust enough to ask these questions to. Most don't even know what I am taking about. I would appreciate your input in these things. Thanks very much.

My reply

> I take for granted that you do believe in the eternal security of the
> believer in the church age. Concerning the Laodiceans Christians that
> are spued out of His mouth (Rev.3:16). If I understand you correctly you
> say that they become Tribulation saints. Does that mean they lose their
> position in the Body of Christ when they are spued out? If they then
> become Tribulation saints, does the same rules apply for them then as
> before the Rapture?

Yes, I believe in eternal security. We are sealed until the day of redemption, whenever it is. Eph. 1:13,14 says, "in whom also after that ye believed, ye were sealed with that holy Spirit of promise. Which is the earnest of our inheritance until the redemption of the purchased possession."

As for the Laodiceans, that spewing out of the Body is temporary. Remember that the foolish virgins came back with more oil, but after the door was closed. The Laodiceans are told, "Behold, I stand at the door and knock: if any man hear my voice, and open the door, I will come in to him (they are now filled with the oil of the Spirit of Christ, as they should have been before the door opened), and will sup with him, and he with me" (probably meaning at the Marriage Supper of the Lamb) (Rev. 3:20).

As for their position, only the Lord knows any of our positions.

The same rules apply during the Tribulation, but one more is added, don't take the Mark of the Beast, even if you have to be a martyr. You just don't dare. Satan told Eve that she would not surely die, but she did. He will probably say that those who take the mark will not be lost, but they will. Those who are filled with the Holy Spirit will not take the mark. God will give them the strength they need.

>Is eternal security only for the saints during the church age?

It may be, I don't know. But the Age of the Church is not over until the Millennium begins.

>When is the Body of Christ completed?

At the Second Rapture.

> When does the fulness of the Gentile (Rom.11:25) come in? When does God stop
> adding people to the Body of Christ and start adding them to the next thing?

At the Second Rapture. After that moment, they become the remnant, sheep, that will live on into the Millennium.

> The first members of the early church were Jewish Messianic believers and yet they
> were a part of the Body of Christ at the same time. Will it be something like that
> again during the Tribulation--in reverse?

In the Church, there is neither Jew nor Gentile, at any time, just those that believe in Yeshua/Jesus.

His reply

Thanks for your response to my questions. Although I am a little disappointed in your answers. I was expecting more in the line of proof, that which you base your beliefs on, instead on merely stating what you believe, (which I already knew). Maybe I wasn't clear enough in my questions. Or maybe you just don't have the time to spend on it with me (I know you are busy), or you really don't know. I'm not sure. I do NOT wish to be argumentative with you at all. I respect your position. But I do have some problems with certain things.

If the church age doesn't close until the end of the Tribulation, then ANYONE that is saved during that time before its end is a CHURCH AGE SAINT--a member of the Body of Christ. If the Laodicean Christians are put out of the Body of Christ TEMPORARILY then how do they get back into it again? Are they resaved again--BORN AGAIN A-G-A-I-N? What Scripture do you have for that? I thought you said they cannot lose their salvation. What does that do to eternal security then? You say that the same rules that apply now in the church age will apply then during the Tribulation. But then you add "one more rule." But you can't have it both ways! Either they are saved FOREVER AND CANNOT E-V-E-R BE LOST or they too can take the Mark of the Beast and be ETERNALLY LOST just like anyone else at that time. WHICH IS IT??? Most those in the "church world" believe that all true Christians are taken out before the Tribulation, and that no Christians--only Tribulation saints will face the mark of the beast. So they don't see this as a problem. That is the problem that I wrote to you about and you did not touch it. Neither did you answer my questions about the eternal security of those saved before or after the present church age.

You say above, "As for their position, only the Lord knows any of our positions." That sounds like a cop out, either you don't know, or are unwilling to say. I think it is dangerous to say things openly that we don't know or cannot prove by the Word of God. You have said (Pro and Con 10) that, "we have to examine Scripture very carefully. A casual reading will not do. One tiny missed point can led to a mistaken interpretation." I agree, that's what I am doing. That's why I am asking these questions. I want it right. I respect your years of hard study of the Bible, and I expected more from you.

I desire to be as accurate in my understanding of the Word of God as I can be so that I may be able to correctly "cut" the things that differ and teach the truth the best that I know to others. This is important to me!!! I MUST have it right first to do that. It does not matter to me how that is as long as it is right from the Word of God. What am I missing here? Please help me with this problem. Can you do that? If you really don't know just say so, and I will not bother you again, if that is what this is to you. Thanks again. May God bless you is my prayer.

My reply

I'm sorry. Maybe we mean different things by "position" in the Body of Christ. I mean that we are not told whether we are fingers, toes, etc. We can guess that people like Billy Graham are part of the mouth, or that I am part of a finger because I write, but that is only guesswork. Proverbs 25:6,7 says, "Put not forth thyself in the presence of the king, and stand not in the place of great men: For better it is that it be said unto thee, Come up hither; than that thou shouldest be put lower in the presence of the prince whom thine eyes have seen."

Maybe what you meant was just simply being in the Body of Christ or out of it.

> If the church age doesn't close until the end of the Tribulation, then
> ANYONE that is saved during that time before its end is a CHURCH AGE
> SAINT--a member of the Body of Christ.

Actually, It looks like all three ages, The Age of the Gentiles, The Age of the Jews, and the Age of the Church are extended and will all three end in a photofinish. However, it does seem that all who believe since the Crucifixion and Resurrection of Christ are members of the Body of Christ, even those who accept Christ during the Tribulation. The New Testament is not done away with as the law was nailed to the cross. The New Testament became effective at the death of the testator and remains in effect during the Tribulation. Heb. 9:16,17 says, "For where a testament is, there must also of necessity be the death of the testator. For a testament is of force after men are dead."

We can tell that the Age of the Jews is extended into the Tribulation by Dan. 9:27, "And he (the prince that shall come) shall confirm the covenant with many for one week (week of years, seven years): and in the midst of the week he ("that Wicked...whose coming is after the working of Satan," II Thess. 2:8,9) shall cause the sacrifice and the oblation to cease." He "sitteth in the temple of God, shewing himself that he is God" (II Thess. 2:4), thus defiling the temple and causing the sacrificing to cease.

The Age of the Church is extended also, because I Cor. 10:11 says that things happened to Israel for examples, and "they are written for our admonition, upon whom the ends of the world (tele ton aionon, ENDS of the ages; i.e., ends of at least two ages) are come."

I don't know of a verse that indicates that the Age of the Gentiles is also extended, but it seems that if two ages are extended, all three would be. During the Tribulation, God is dealing with Jews (144,000 mentioned in Rev. 7), and with the remnant of the Church (the Laodiceans whom Jesus said are spewed "out of my mouth" (Rev. 3:16). He is also dealing with the nations. The saved out of the Tribulation some from "all nations, and kindreds, and people, and tongues" (Rev. 7:9). Thus the Age of the Gentiles seems to be extended also. The ages are referred to as "time" and the Tribulation is "judgment" (Eccl. 8:5). All share the same judgment.

What happens to believers at the time of the Rapture? "Then shall two be in the field; the one shall be taken, and the other left. Two women (symbol of religious groups) shall be grinding at the mill; the one (the Philadelphians) shall be taken, and the other (the Laodiceans) left.

And what happens to those left? The faithful and wise servant is made "ruler over all his goods." Re the evil servant (he is a servant, therefore a believer), Mt. 24:50,51 says, "The lord of that servant shall come in a day when he looketh not for him, and in an hour that he is not aware of, And shall cut him asunder (cut him off), and appoint him HIS PORTION (the extension of the Age of the Church, which includes the Shortened Tribulation) WITH THE HYPOCRITES: there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth."

Luke 12:46 says, "The lord of that servant (believer) will come in a day when he looketh not for him, and at an hour when he is not aware, and will cut him in sunder (cut him off), and will appoint him HIS PORTION WITH THE UNBELIEVERS."

> If the Laodicean Christians are put out of the Body of Christ TEMPORARILY
> then how do they get back into it again? Are they resaved again--BORN AGAIN
> A-G-A-I-N? What Scripture do you have for that?

None. Being born again AGAIN would be impossible. Heb. 6:4 says, "it is impossible for those who were once enlightened, and have tasted of the heavenly gift, and were made partakers of the Holy Ghost, And have tasted the good word of God, and the powers of the world (age) to come, IF they shall fall away, to renew them again unto repentance; seeing they crucify to themselves the Son of God afresh, and put him to an open shame."

The Laodiceans were in Christ or they could not be spewed out. Therefore, they are sealed until the day of redemption. Eph. 1:13,14 says, "in whom also after that ye believed, ye were sealed with that holy Spirit of promise, Which is the earnest of our inheritance until the redemption of the purchased possession." This sealing cannot be lost. Even the Laodiceans have it until the day of redemption. The lamps of the foolish virgins were literally going out. They had not gone out. There was some oil, but not enough to burn brightly.

As soon as the Laodiceans are spewed out, they get more oil (Mt. 25:10; Rev. 3:20).
"Afterward came also the other virgins, saying, Lord, Lord, open to us" (Mt. 25:11), but the door of Heaven was shut, not to open again until the beginning of the Millennium.

That is a two leaved door. The first door is the narrow one. The second is the wide one. We are to "Strive to enter in at the strait gate: for many, I say unto you, will seek to enter in, and shall not be able. When once the master of the house (whose house are we) is risen up, and hath shut to the door (as he shut Noah in), and ye begin to stand without, and to knock at the door, saying, Lord, Lord, open unto us; and he shall answer and say unto you, I know you not whence (from what place) ye are (he doesn't see their lamps burning brightly enough)...depart from me, all ye workers of iniquity. There shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth" (Luke 13:24-28).

What happens when we sin and get out feet dirty? We are not walking in the light (I John 1:7). We are saved but out of fellowship. Sin interrupts fellowship, but confession restores it. Confessing our sins is as Christ washing Peter's feet. Then he "cleanseth us from all sin" (I John 1:7,9). This is what the Laodiceans must do, thus buying the white raiment they need to enter the gate of Heaven. As soon as they do this they have their extra oil and seem to be the last foot of the Body of Christ. They are then walking in the light, ready to be born into the new world as soon as the other door opens. Since the foolish virgins immediately came back, it seems that the Laodiceans will do the same. Missing out on the Rapture will shake them up enough to get them back in fellowship with God.

They are not born again for they never lose the sealing of the Holy Spirit. They just buy more oil (Holy Spirit) to be bound tightly into the spiritual Body of Christ.

> You say that the same rules that apply now in the church age will apply then
> during the Tribulation. But then you add "one more rule." But you can't have it
> both ways! Either they are saved FOREVER AND CANNOT E-V-E-R BE LOST or they too can
> take the Mark of the Beast and be ETERNALLY LOST just like anyone else at that
> time. WHICH IS IT???

You surely don't think that I added "one more rule," myself. YHVH/Jesus gives man different instructions to follow in different eras. During the Tribulation, he makes it clear that believers are not to take the Mark of the Beast. He might have said that before, like maybe at the Sermon on the Mount, but the Mark of the Beast was not to appear until the Tribulation, so he put those instructions in Revelation.

Since all the New Testament is still in force, and believers are sealed until the day of redemption, I can't see how any true believer can be lost. Also, John 6:39,40 says, "And this is the Father's will which hath sent me, that of all which he hath given me I should lose nothing, but should raise it up again (i.e., the Second Rapture) at the last day. And this is the will of him that sent me, that EVERY ONE which seeth the Son, and believeth on him, may have everlasting life: and I will raise him up at the last day." Whether this means the last day of this age or the beginning of the seventh l000-year day makes no difference. This age ends as the Millennium begins. It is at this time that they will be raised up. Just exactly what hour, I don't know, but it must be before noon on the first day of the Millennium for the asteroid impacts at noon.

Are you worried that a believer might take the Mark of the Beast? If they believe Scripture, would they dare? The outcome would be too terrible to contemplate. One would rather die and go to Heaven right then.

Who will accept it? those that believe a lie, but those that believe a lie "believed not the truth" (II Thess. 2:12) in the first place.

> Neither did you answer my questions about the eternal security of those saved
> before or after the present church age.

I don't know for certain, but Job is the oldest book in the Bible, and Job knew his salvation was sure. In Job 14:13,14, he said, "O that thou wouldest hide me in the grave, that thou wouldest keep me secret, until thy wrath be past, that thou wouldest appoint me a set time, and remember me! If a man die, shall he live again? all the days of my appointed time will I wait, till my CHANGE come."

Change ties in with I Cor. 15:51,52, which says, "We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed, In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump: for the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed." The day of the last trump is the day of the second Rapture.

Even during the Dispensation of the Law, men thought they were saved by obeying the commandments, but they were really saved by grace just as we are. Man's test in every age is that the just shall walk by faith. We should have faith in God even though we cannot see him. We should obey him even though we cannot see him. Abraham believed God, and it was counted to him as righteousness. I think the scales are heavy on the side of eternal security once any man believes God. The promise of a Saviour was given as early as Genesis 3:15. Those who believed in his coming were saved all through the Old Testament days. After the Messiah came, we are saved by believing that Jesus is the Messiah. It is not so different after all. Whether we look backward or foreward, faith in our Saviour is essential. If this is so nearly the same, it seems that all would have eternal security if we do. What do you think?

Incoming Email and my interspersed comments

> You certainly took a beating in pro con 44. I felt sick after reading the
> letter..then he challenged you to answer! I knew you would with kindness. It's
> hard ? to believe that you are on pro con 44! You added your first one when I was
> already visiting your page. I still enjoy it. I have written several times. I don't
> expect you to remember, but I always respect and appreciate your answers.

I recognize your email as soon as it goes into the Inbox for it shows ... That is pretty distinctive. Thanks for writing....

> Putting phrophey aside for a minute, I hope you don't mind if I ask you a
> question. I am still looking for a church. If I study the Word and teach
> my children, is it still God's wish that I find a church? That wasn't my
> question.

He said not to forsake assembling ourselves together, so much more so as ye see the day approach.

> In Luke 1:41 and 1:67 John the Baptist's parents were filled with the Holy
> Spirit. Jesus hasn't been born yet. I thought that it was not possible
> until the day of pentecost? Were Elizabeth and Zechariah the first born
> again believers?

In Old Testament days, the Holy Spirit came and went upon people. David said take not thy Spirit from me. During the Church Age, believers are indwelt and Jesus said, "I will never leave you."

> When I walked into the religion section of the book store, I told God to
> show me a book to buy that would keep me reading and studying His Word. He
> showed me your book The End of The Age. Well He certainly answered that
> prayer for me. Just before that I had taken a college course , Intro to the
> Bible, It was wonderful. For the first time in my life I understood what
> the Bible was all about and how it was laid out. I also know that our whole
> purpose here on earth is to find people to witness and to prepare for our
> eternal life. I am not finding anyone in my daily routine to witness to,
> but I am hopeful. I am not sure how to bring it up.

Prepare yourself to give an answer of the hope that is in you. Then pray for the Lord's leading. The opportunity will present itself. Something will come up that will lead into it. If not, the Lord knows that it would do no good.

> I am looking forward to your new book. I tried to but it today, but it's
> not at the book store close to me yet. I am checking downtown tomorrow.

Try B. Dalton's. You can always get it from me too. Well not "always." I plan to leave here next Pentecost.

> I bought a Bible Commentary today be Warren W. Wiersbe--have you heard of him?

No. I haven't. When I get hold of different ones, I look at their understanding of Ezekiel 1 and 10. Not one tells the real story so far.

> Well thanks again

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Updated 12-20-97-97