Genesis Chartper 18 Series, Part 10, Verses 16-22

God opened up the doctrine that “hell” was not a place of torment,
  • | Chris McCann
  • Audio: Length: 27:34
  • Passages covered: Genesis 18:16-22, John 14:26, John 16:12, John 16:13 & 13-15, Mark 13:10-11,
    John 16:13, 1Corinthians 2:11, 1Corinthians 2:12, Matthew 11:27, Acts 1:7.

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Welcome to EBible Fellowship’s Bible study in the Book of Genesis. Tonight is study #10 of Genesis, chapter 18 and we are reading Genesis 18:16-22:

And the men rose up from thence, and looked toward Sodom: and Abraham went with them to bring them on the way. And JEHOVAH said, Shall I hide from Abraham that thing which I do; Seeing that Abraham shall surely become a great and mighty nation, and all the nations of the earth shall be blessed in him? For I know him, that he will command his children and his household after him, and they shall keep the way of JEHOVAH, to do justice and judgment; that JEHOVAH may bring upon Abraham that which he hath spoken of him. And JEHOVAH said, Because the cry of Sodom and Gomorrah is great, and because their sin is very grievous; I will go down now, and see whether they have done altogether according to the cry of it, which is come unto me; and if not, I will know. And the men turned their faces from thence, and went toward Sodom: but Abraham stood yet before JEHOVAH.

We are looking at verse 17. We are taking an in-depth look because God has made a very important statement. Every statement of God is important, but this statement is especially important because it involves God’s plan to reveal truth to His people. So many things are dependent upon God revealing truth. For instance, it is the revealing of truth that determines “times and seasons.” It was through the revealing of truth that showed that God’s relationship with Israel was over and through revealing of additional truth, the church age began. Then God revealed the end of the church age and His relationship with the New Testament churches and congregations of the world was over. And, finally, it was through the revealing of truth that God showed the last time allotted for people to seek salvation, peradventure God would be pleased to grant it to them. This time also had a timeline that would conclude on the day of May 21, 2011 and then there would no longer be salvation as we entered into the Day of Judgment, the period in which we find ourselves living.

So many things that we currently understand are based upon the Spirit of God revealing information from the Bible to His people. This is how we are led from one date to the next. Remember what the Lord Jesus Christ said in John 14:26:

But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you.

We keep reading this term “all things,” again, and again. The Lord God will do nothing but He reveals His secret to His servants the prophets. They that seek JEHOVAH understand all things. Here, the Comforter (the Holy Ghost) will be sent to teach you all things. Of course, this fits with John 16:12:

I have yet many things to say unto you, but ye cannot bear them now.

This is what Jesus said, but why did He say they “cannot bear them now”? It was because the things Christ would say would be written, but they would not be understood until the time of the end of the world. There is a timeline for the opening and revealing of certain truths and we must reach the appropriate point in time before God will open the Scriptures to reveal His plan for that time. So Jesus is pointing out that He has many things to say unto them, but they cannot bear them now; that is, it was not for the Christians that would live during the many centuries of the church age to “bear the burden” of the Great Tribulation and the final judgment of the world. Why should they, when it did not apply to their day? God very wisely appropriated Scriptures here and there, like when He said, “But of that day and hour knoweth no man,” and He would not open the understanding of those people regarding what He meant by that, so they would concentrate on those things they were responsible to bear for their particular time in history during the church age, whether it was the 2nd century or the 15th century or the 20th century. The time came when the church age would end and then God opened the Scriptures to reveal truth that is relevant to His people that are living in this time and now we must bear it because it appertains unto us. It is for us because we are living at this specific time in history. We are not to go back to former doctrines and things that appertained to an easier time. God has reserved tremendous amounts of truth for the time of the end and, in His wisdom, He opened up the hidden things that were concealed in the parables of the Bible. He has revealed them to us and that is what Jesus is saying: “I have yet many things to say unto you, but ye cannot bear them now.”

Then it says in John 16:13:

Howbeit when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth…

Or, we could say, He will guide you into “all things,” as we read in John 14:26. It has to do with truth. Again, it says in John 16:13-15:

Howbeit when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth: for he shall not speak of himself; but whatsoever he shall hear, that shall he speak: and he will shew you things to come. He shall glorify me: for he shall receive of mine, and shall shew it unto you. All things that the Father hath are mine: therefore said I, that he shall take of mine, and shall shew it unto you.

Again, and again, He speaks of showing us “all things.” This is written in John 16 and Acts 2 follows John 16 in the chronological order of the Bible and in the historical order. We should not think that when the Holy Spirit was poured out in Acts that it means that this is the point in time that the Spirit of truth would come and guide us into all truth. Yes, the Holy Spirit did come the first time on the Day of Pentecost and did guide us to truth during the church age, but did He guide us into all truth? It is obvious when you look at church history and the spiritual high places the churches held to during the church age that God did not guide them into all truth.

But we know there was a second outpouring of the Holy Spirit in a Jubilee year in 1994 after the church age had come to an end. There was that grievous 2300 days after the church age came to an end on May 21, 1988

and then on September 7, 1994 God poured out the Holy Spirit the second time to recover the remnant of His people. And because it was the time of the end, the Holy Spirit began to open the Scriptures as was promised to Daniel: “Shut up the words, and seal the book, even to the time of the end: many shall run to and fro, and knowledge shall be increased.”

God opened up the doctrine that “hell” was not a place of torment,

Beginning in 1994 God the Holy Spirit began to guide His people into all truth to fill up the degree of truth as He began to teach many things, like the Sunday Sabbath. Most of the churches had been correctly worshipping on Sunday throughout the church age, but they never fully understood why. It was not until the 1990s that we began to learn about the Sunday Sabbath and why it truly was the Sabbath Day. We began to see that it is the faith of Christ (not our faith), as God purified our understanding of His salvation program as the Latter Rain was being sent to the unsaved people of the earth to find the lost sheep of the house of Israel. God opened up information regarding the end of the church age and the fact that Christ was slain from the foundation of the world. God opened up the doctrine that “hell” was not a place of torment, but it is the death or the grave and God’s final judgment upon the sinner will be annihilation. God also opened up the timeline for the day of salvation and when it would end, and Judgment Day would begin on May 21, 2011. God kept opening more and more truths and even after that date as we live on the earth in the Day of Judgment we are learning about spiritual judgment. We are learning that the elect must make an appearance before the judgment seat of Christ. We are learning that God is now recompensing or repaying Satan and his kingdom of Babylon for the tribulation they brought against the city called by God’s name, the corporate church. It just goes on and on and we are being guided into “all truth.”

Lest you should think that John 16 is not referring to the time of the end, just read the parallel chapter in Mark 13. This is the chapter where the disciples asked the Lord Jesus Christ this question: “What shall be the sign of thy coming, and of the end of the world?” Jesus said in Mark 13:10-11:

And the gospel must first be published among all nations. But when they shall lead you, and deliver you up, take no thought beforehand what ye shall speak…

Remember what it said in 1Corinthians 2 that we speak the mystery of God, the hidden things. Again, it says in Mark 13:11:

… take no thought beforehand what ye shall speak, neither do ye premeditate…

We read earlier that Jesus said, “I have yet many things to say unto you, but ye cannot bear them now.” The churches would have been much better off if they had not premeditated and tried to understand the time of the end during the time period of the church age, at which time that information was not given to them to understand. That is what Jesus is saying. Then it goes on to say in Mark 13:11:

…but whatsoever shall be given you in that hour, that speak ye: for it is not ye that speak, but the Holy Ghost.

The Holy Ghost is the same as the Holy Spirit that would guide us into all truth. I will read that again in John 16:13:

Howbeit when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth: for he shall not speak of himself; but whatsoever he shall hear, that shall he speak: and he will shew you things to come.

Now we have a problem because it is referring to the Great Tribulation, the time of the end of the world. God had sealed the Bible. He had brought divine revelation until near the end of the 1st century A.D. and then He completed the Bible and the Holy Spirit stopped moving men of old to scribe the Bible. That whole process ended, and the Spirit was not moving men to write down His revelation any further because Genesis through Revelation is the complete written Word of God.

Again, we read that at the time of the end of the world we were not to premediate or take thought beforehand what we shall speak, “but whatsoever shall be given you in that hour, that speak ye.” Then God added an amazing statement: “for it is not ye that speak, but the Holy Ghost.” It is not the elect child of God that speaks, but the Holy Spirit. How can God do this? God is bound by His own Law and He has magnified His Word above all His name and He cannot break His own Law. He cannot just break the barrier of the supernatural and speak audibly to us at the time of the end. He cannot do that because He completed the Bible and He warned that whoever adds or subtracts from the Word of the prophecy of the Book is subject to the plagues written therein.

And, yet, God has a plan to “speak” through the Holy Spirit, who is eternal God, at the time of the end. Not only is He going to “speak,” but the people of God are going to speak the same thing: “but whatsoever shall be given you in that hour, that speak ye.” You and I and every child of God would speak what is given us in that “hour” of the Great Tribulation. What did we conclude earlier when we read John 16? It was not referring to Acts 2, because the Bible was still being completed, but it would be at the time of the end that the Spirit would lead and guide us into “all truth.” And here is the evidence in Mark 13:11:

…but whatsoever shall be given you in that hour, that speak ye: for it is not ye that speak, but the Holy Ghost.

The Holy Spirit will “speak” in the hour of the Great Tribulation. If we go to 1Corinthians, chapter 2 we will discover how it is that the Holy Spirit can “speak” and, yet, not violate His Word that He would not add or subtract to the written Word of God. It says in 1Corinthians 2:11:

For what man knoweth the things of a man, save the spirit of man which is in him? even so the things of God knoweth no man, but the Spirit of God.

We have been talking about this and how the unsaved person cannot know the things of God. Then it goes on to say in 1Corinthians 2:12:

Now we have received, not the spirit of the world, but the spirit which is of God; that we might know the things that are freely given to us of God.

This is exactly what we read in Matthew 11:27:

All things are delivered unto me of my Father: and no man knoweth the Son, but the Father; neither knoweth any man the Father, save the Son, and he to whomsoever the Son will reveal him.

You see, this is what is never taken into consideration when people say we cannot know anything about time and judgment or that we cannot know when the world will end. They say we cannot know these things. But I say, and all God’s people would say that we cannot know these things of ourselves, just as it says in Acts 1:7. By the way, we have to look at the original Greek to understand this verse properly, but it says in Acts 1:7:

And he said unto them, It is not for you to know the times or the seasons, which the Father hath put in his own power.

This verse is the genitive case and it literally should read, “It is not of you to know the times or the seasons.” And I would agree that it is not of me or of any man to know – we do not have that understanding. We lack everything necessary to know times and seasons, but that is not the point God is making throughout the Bible. What did Abraham know of the coming destruction of Sodom? He knew nothing until God revealed it. Did Noah know of God’s plan to destroy the world with a flood? He did not know anything about it until God told him to build the ark because He was going to destroy the world with a flood. And then God told him, “And yet seven days,” and He would bring the flood to destroy the earth. God is the one who told Jonah to go to Nineveh and preach the preaching He would bid him. What did Jonah know of it? He did not even like the idea of warning the Ninevites.

It is God’s program and of ourselves we do not know “time and judgment” until the Father reveals it, or Jesus Christ reveals it and the Holy Spirit guides us into truth. And then we can know. We are granted understanding. It says in Daniel 12:10: “…and none of the wicked shall understand; but the wise shall understand.” Evil men understand not judgment, but they that seek JEHOVAH understand all things. It says in Ecclesiastes 8:5: “…and a wise man’s heart discerneth both time and judgment.” Is it because we have a gift of discernment? It is only because the Holy Spirit gives us the ability to discern and to understand these things. It is how we can know the church age is over. It is how we can know that God has judged the churches. It is how we can know that spiritual judgment is presently upon the entire world.

And just at the time when the Bible reveals that spiritual judgment is upon all the nations of the world, we see the world “going crazy” and acting in madness in every area. There is public humiliation in this part of the world and that part of the world. Why is that? It matches with what God has revealed concerning Judgment Day that began on May 21, 2011. It matches because God has revealed it.

We did not get to it yet, but we will look again at 1Corinthians 2 and how the Holy Spirit can “speak” and, yet, not speak and how we can speak and, yet, it is the Holy Spirit that is speaking. This is something that is very important for us to know and we will look at it in our next Bible study.