B.A.S.I.C. NEWSLETTER #11
B.A.S.I.C. Newsletter #11
I Cor. 16:9 For a great and effective door has opened to me, and there are many
June 5, 2003
We exercise our faith.
The Man and the Butterfly
A man found a cocoon of a butterfly. One day a small opening appeared. He sat and watched the butterfly for several hours as it struggled to force its body through that little hole. Then it seemed to stop making any progress. It appeared as if it had gotten as far as it could, and it could go no further. So the man decided to help the butterfly. He took a pair of scissors and snipped off the remaining bit of cocoon. The butterfly then emerged easily. But it had a swollen body and small, shriveled wings. The man continued to watch the butterfly because he expected that, at any moment, the wings would enlarge and expand to be able to support the body, which would contract in time. Neither happened! In fact the butterfly spent the rest of its life crawling around with a swollen body and shriveled wings. It never was able to fly. What the man, in his kindness and haste, did not understand was that the restricting cocoon and the struggle required for the butterfly to get through the tiny opening were God’s way of forcing fluid from the body of the butterfly into its wings so that it would be ready for flight once it achieved its freedom from the cocoon. Sometimes struggles are exactly what we need in our lives. If God allowed us to go through our lives without any obstacles, it would cripple us. We would not be as strong as what we could have been. We could never fly.
Millenium – There are Christians who teach that Christ will reign on earth visibly for exactly one thousand years. They will use the words of Rev. 20:1-6 to prove this. First of all it should be remembered that after the messages to the seven churches in Rev. 1-3 we have symbolic or picture language to reveal the truths of God. To say that it is exactly a thousand years in chapter 20, is to depart from the explanation of the figurative language in the many chapters before. One thousand years is a perfect period of time during which something is accomplished. 1000 is ten times ten times ten. Ten is a number of completeness to the Hebrews. In v. 2 Satan is defeated, Christ conquered him on Calvary and the empty tomb. During the “thousand years” the conqueror on the white horse goes forth with His Word to win others for the kingdom, Rev. 19:11-16 At the end of this perfect period of time the devil is allowed to exercise his power, Rev. 20:3,7, Matt. 24:22 Then in the end the devil and his allies are destroyed forever. Rev. 20:10 We are now in the battle, the continuous Armaggedon, the fight of faith. But the victory is ours already and victory is assured by our resurrected Lord. To say Christ will reign visibly on earth is to dispute Him when He said that His kingdom was not of this world. Jn. 18:36 and that the kingdom of God is within or in the midst of you, Lk. 17:21
We will begin a Hermeneutics Study on the fifteen “Principles of Interpretation”. II Peter 1: 20-21 knowing this first, that no prophecy of Scripture is of any private interpretation, for prophecy never came by the will of man, but holy men of God spoke as they were moved by the Holy Spirit.
1 We work with a translation. The translation is only accurate as long as it expresses the truth as recorded in the original languages. The Old Testament was written in Hebrew and Aramaic and the New Testament was written in Greek. We must be able to work with the original languages so that we may discover the deeper meaning of certain words and passages. An understanding of the original languages will aid us to answer questions on interpreting difficult passages.
We as pastors must be sure that the chapter, paragraph and verse we study gives the essential message that the Spirit wants to convey. In true Lutheran tradition we require our pastors to have a working knowledge of Greek, and some of Hebrew.
A study of certain words in the original language yields a wealth of insight and information. For instance “chesed: in the Hebrew is a jewel which has many facets to it. It can be translated: mercy, pity, steadfastness, loving kindness, steadfast love. If we did not know the Hebrew we would miss part of the wealth of this word.
In Christian love,