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September 20, 1998

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Q/A Topics:
Fig leaves -"heat"

'Notice the strange weather all over the world the last couple years? This summer it was heat. And, at least as far as the US was concerned, the "whole" US was experiencing heat...at the same time. Usually one region will be hot, and another cool. Or..."dry" and "rainy."

This past week a few days ago, the evening news carried a segment that NASA reported that the "entire globe" has been heating up this past year. (I would guess from the way it was stated, that this warming is more than the previously-assumed "global warming" amounts.) Usually such phenonenon is accompanied by solar flairs, etc. But not this time. This particular report "could not explain it."

Maybe a precursor to this....? "And the fourth angel poured out his vial onto the sun. And it was given to him to burn men with fire. And men were burned with great heat. And they blasphemed the name of God, He having authority over these plagues. And they did not repent in order to give Him glory." (Rev16:8-9)

The "beginning of sorrows"...? (Mt24:8)


A Cappella Music?

Regarding your Q/A of Sept. 8 regarding "where to draw the line regarding Christian Music." Would it not be proper to say that the silence of the Bible requires us to draw the line at any kind of music other than singing? From the practices of the early church and the writings of the epistles, is not singing the only music practiced and enjoined upon Christians? I have been raised acappella all my life and have only recently been questioning and discussing with others the correctness of this stance. What line of reasoning would you use to refute the acappella stance?

Yes...I thought about "side-swiping" this issue when that Q/A was done. But its topic focused in on the fact of Christians vs. non-Christians doing music/worship...and "participation" in "church activities" in general.

This "a cappella" issue is a totally different subject. As I see where the "church" has taken music, I have tended to think that "a cappella" might not be a bad idea; it would get rid of the "rock" aspects. However, "a cappella" alone would not resolve the matter of non-Christians participating in worship, nor the charismatic "mantra" thing which can still be done a cappella...in fact, is even better "suited to" it.

"A cappella" meaning "without accompaniment."

Typically, the reasons I've heard for "a cappella" music in church comes from two N.T. passages. "..singing and making melody in your hearts.." (Eph5:19) and "..singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord." (Col3:16)

It is often interpreted that "making MELODY" involves the absence of harmony or rhythm. And because these passages don't mention instruments, it is assumed that God intended them NOT to be used. And thus, as history shows, eventually singing in monophony developed into what is commonly called "chant" from the French "chanter", which came from the Latin "cantus", "to sing." The monks used it a lot, and to shorten this history lesson way down, it has become popularized as what is called "Gregorian Chant" ...from Pope Gregory.

However, when looking it up with Strongs, "making melody" in Eph5:19 comes from "psallo" == "to pluck off, to cause to vibrate by touching." And the association is made with "stringed instrument, or harp." In a very real sense, the vocal chords are a type of "string" (muscle) which are "caused to vibrate" when the breath passes through them.

I have not found any N.T. passage which makes the O.T. use of instruments obsolete, such as Ps150, etc. These two proof-texts neither support nor prohibit the use of instruments. They simply don't say, either way. When the Jerusalem leadership established some "rules" for the Gentiles, "music" was not on the list. (Acts 15:20,29)

The O.T. mentions the use of instruments A LOT in the temple worship. The N.T. doesn't mention "instruments" at all, either yea or nay. Neither Jesus nor the Apostles touch on the matter of "instruments." Thus, I tend to think that the use of instruments is just fine...because they are used in the O.T. and Psalms is full of them. The O.T. was not thrown out the window when the Church was established.

However, if some Believers feel they should not use instruments; well, I'm not going to judge them. (Rom14) This is not an issue which will save or condemn a person regarding their eternal standing with God. But neither should they judge those who do use instruments; for instruments' sake alone. The few times I have visited an "a cappella" fellowship, they have invariably sung in "4-part harmony." Not..."melody." And as such, they apparently don't even necessarily always follow their own suppositions of Scriptural interpretation and application.

But...what beautiful singing!! The likes of which I've not heard anywhere else! ...full harmony and all!


Job: when/where?

My question re: Job is this. Job mentions snow and storms yet I thought there were no storms until at the time of the Flood. and where was or is Uz?

According to Gen 36:28 you will see that Uz was a descendant of Esau. Also, see Lam 4:21. As such, it would have been "easterly" from Israel, somewhere along northern Arabia?? Or being called the "land of Uz" (Job1:1) perhaps it was the land of Uz, the descendant of Shem (Gen10:23); from the passage describing the dividing up of the earth amongst the descendants of Noah? (vs32) Whatever the case, he was in a region close enough for the "Chaldeans" to come against him.(Job1:17) "Ur of the Chaldees" (Gen11:31) was about where Kuwait is today.

And you'll find his "three friends" are descendants from both Esau and Abraham through Keturah. (Job2:11 vs. Genesis chs 25,36,37)

So...contrary to "popular" belief...Job was not nearly as "ancient" as many suppose. Was he around, possibly, during the time Israel was in Egypt? I have not stumbled onto the passages that might indicate it...nor have I calculated from these I've just given...if it is even possible to calculate from what's given. 'just never studied it.

So...obviously, this was "after" the flood, when the seasons had become established. In Job 9:9,38:31 is mention of "Pleiades" ...thought, by many, to be part of the "equation" of the causes of the Flood. And in ch38 God is explaining to Job all His power and mentions the flood in vs34. Obviously, such a concept was "past tense" ...since it had not rained on the earth before the flood.


Satan: heaven, to earth, and back?

Can satan still travel from earth to heaven and back?

Well...I would assume so. Rev12:9-10 speaks of the dragon being "cast out." ..and that part of his activities was to "accuse the brethren.... before God." Since this spiritual warfare is still "obviously" going on today, and Christians experience "accusations" ...it would seem likely that he "currently" has access to God's presence. And it is obvious the world is under deception, so he has access to the world, too ...but at some future time...likely during "Wrath" (??) that he will be cast down to the earth, with no more access to heaven (Rev12:12) having "great wrath" because he knows he has just a short time left.


Two natures?

The scriptures teach that when a person is saved he is a new creation, and that old things have passed away. Does that mean that we do not have the old nature anymore? Most people I speak to and the churches that I have been interested in say that we still are sinners, although, the Bible teaches that we are saints?

In Romans 7 Paul bemoans the "two natures" he was still struggling with. It is because we are still of "flesh and blood" (1Cor15:50) But at the rapture/resurrection (1Th4:14-17,1Cor15:51-57) we receive new "incorruptible" bodies as we become "like Him" (1Jn3:2)

Yes...we are sinners, in these bodies...albeit "saved by grace." (Eph2:8) Therefore we are, "accepted in the Beloved" (Eph1:6) and are the "righteousness of God in Him [Christ]" (2Cor5:21)

Saint == holy

We are exhorted to "be holy" (1Pt1:16)

The word "holy" means to be "separated, set apart" and so, as such we are not to be "unequally yoked" with unbelievers. (2Cor6:14) and are to "come of her my people" (Rev18:4)

But for now...we are still "flesh and blood" ... Sigh!

Certainly there must be some scripture which would make it indelibly clear that we are double natured. Yet I see a multitude of scripture that Now we are clean, and the Saviour's work was finished in regard to our salvation. If we have two natures, it is written a house divided against itself can not stand. We do not to have our upper lips covered crying, Unclean, unclean.

I thought Romans 7 should have been clear, as clear, could be. The "horse" can be at the "water trough" but he's gotta take the drink.


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