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My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?


My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?

These are the first words of Psalm 22; “My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?” We can be sure that King David, who is credited as the Psalmist, felt rather desolate when he wrote those words. At varying times my life has taken me to dark and desolate places and I find great comfort in the promises made in Psalm 22. King David’s words reassure me that, even when all seems lost, God hears us. And as long as we rely on and trust in our Maker there will be a good end.

The fifth time the phrase live for ever is mentioned.

What we’re looking for in Psalm 22 is, where the phrase ‘live for ever’ is mentioned, and the context. It is mentioned by King David in Psalm 22 verse 26 as follows,

The meek shall eat and be satisfied: they shall praise the Lord that seek him: your heart shall live for ever.

or in a different translation as follows,

Let the oppressed eat and be filled! Let those who seek his help praise the LORD! May you live forever!

‘May you live for ever’ is a sincere wish, if not prophesy from King David to the oppressed. He states that they shall eat and be satisfied, with those who seek the LORD praising him and living for ever. This is the fifth time that the phrase live for ever has been mentioned in the bible.

To find out what context these words were used in, we’ll have a look at the whole of Psalm 22.

My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?

The first sentence in Psalm 22 is as follows: “My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?” These are the exact same words uttered by Jesus when he was crucified,

And about the ninth hour Jesus cried with a loud voice, saying, Eli, Eli, lama sabachthani? that is to say, My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?

Jesus did not expect His Father to ‘save’ him from that moment of suffering because Jesus knew what was expected of him. It appears that at the time of this outcry he felt disconnected from GOD. Jesus knew however what was about to happen because he had said shortly before his crucifiction, that all things that are written by the prophets concerning Him, should be accomplished,

Then he took unto him the twelve, and said unto them, Behold, we go up to Jerusalem, and all things that are written by the prophets concerning the Son of man shall be accomplished. For he shall be delivered unto the Gentiles, and shall be mocked, and spitefully entreated, and spitted on: And they shall scourge him, and put him to death: and the third day he shall rise again.

Much of what is described in Psalm 22 took place at Jesus crucifixion.

Psalm 22

A cry of anguish and a song of praise.

To understand the context of why the phrase ‘live for ever’ was mentioned I will quote the whole of Psalm 22 below,

For the Chief Musician; set to Aijeleth hash-Shahar. A Psalm of David, Psalm 22

1 My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me? why art thou so far from helping me, and from the words of my roaring?
2 O my God, I cry in the day time, but thou hearest not; and in the night season, and am not silent.
3 But thou art holy, O thou that inhabitest the praises of Israel.
4 Our fathers trusted in thee: they trusted, and thou didst deliver them.
5 They cried unto thee, and were delivered: they trusted in thee, and were not confounded.
6 But I am a worm, and no man; a reproach of men, and despised of the people.
7 All they that see me laugh me to scorn: they shoot out the lip, they shake the head, saying,
8 He trusted on the Lord that he would deliver him: let him deliver him, seeing he delighted in him.
9 But thou art he that took me out of the womb: thou didst make me hope when I was upon my mother’s breasts.
10 I was cast upon thee from the womb: thou art my God from my mother’s belly.
11 Be not far from me; for trouble is near; for there is none to help.
12 Many bulls have compassed me: strong bulls of Bashan have beset me round.
13 They gaped upon me with their mouths, as a ravening and a roaring lion.
14 I am poured out like water, and all my bones are out of joint: my heart is like wax; it is melted in the midst of my bowels.
15 My strength is dried up like a potsherd; and my tongue cleaveth to my jaws;
and thou hast brought me into the dust of death.
16 For dogs have compassed me: the assembly of the wicked have inclosed me: they pierced my hands and my feet.
17 I may tell all my bones: they look and stare upon me.
18 They part my garments among them, and cast lots upon my vesture.
19 But be not thou far from me, O Lord: O my strength, haste thee to help me.
20 Deliver my soul from the sword; my darling from the power of the dog.
21 Save me from the lion’s mouth: for thou hast heard me from the horns of the unicorns.
22 I will declare thy name unto my brethren: in the midst of the congregation will I praise thee.
23 Ye that fear the Lord, praise him; all ye the seed of Jacob, glorify him; and fear him, all ye the seed of Israel.
24 For he hath not despised nor abhorred the affliction of the afflicted; neither hath he hid his face from him; but when he cried unto him, he heard.
25 My praise shall be of thee in the great congregation: I will pay my vows before them that fear him.
26 The meek shall eat and be satisfied: they shall praise the Lord that seek him: your heart shall live for ever.
27 All the ends of the world shall remember and turn unto the Lord: and all the kindreds of the nations shall worship before thee.
28 For the kingdom is the Lord’s: and he is the governor among the nations.
29 All they that be fat upon earth shall eat and worship: all they that go down to the dust shall bow before him: and none can keep alive his own soul.
30 A seed shall serve him; it shall be accounted to the Lord for a generation.
31 They shall come, and shall declare his righteousness unto a people that shall be born, that he hath done this.

The above is Psalm 22 as written by King David.

Many similarities between Psalm 22 and the events at Jesus crucifixion.

Many of the sentiments expressed in Psalm 22 are echoed with Jesus crucifixion. For instance; Jesus couldn’t feel GOD’s presence in his darkest hour. Jesus asked for the cup to pass from him, yet either way had utmost confidence in His Father’s decisions, He cried in the night. He was despised and mocked, in trouble with none to help. Jesus was surrounded by strong people who were after his life, dry … into the dust of death … he was pierced. He was looked and stared upon, his garments parted among them, with lots cast upon his vesture. Jesus was merciful on another afflicted soul who was crucified with him. Jesus shall live for ever and all the ends of the world are remembering and turning unto the Lord. A seed shall come, and shall declare his righteousness unto a people that shall be born, that he hath done this.

There are a lot of similarities between Psalm 22 and Jesus crucifixion. There seem to be some translation errors in Psalm 22 as mentioned by various sources. Just the same, even when we take these proposed errors into consideration, there remain many similarities between the events described in Psalm 22, which was written around one thousand years before Jesus crucifixion, and the events which took place at the crucifixion.

In what context is the phrase ‘live for ever’ mentioned?

Confidence in GOD

Psalm 22 was written by King David who was known in times of trouble to pour his heart out to GOD. When he wrote Psalm 22 King David must have been in a dark place indeed, yet he continues to trust in GOD and knows with a surety that The LORD will deliver him. Yes, it is true that King David says, “My God why have you forsaken me?” But it is equally true that shortly after this exclamation King David praises God and expresses his confidence in the saving power of The LORD.

And yes, Jesus also exclaimed, “My God why have you forsaken me?” But prior to that heartfelt anguish, Jesus invited a repentant criminal into heaven with him. This shows that Jesus has confidence in his Father’s saving power and promises and teaches us followers and believers the significance of genuine repentance and fear of GOD.

Jesus was recognised as the Son of God straight after his exclamation,

And when the centurion, which stood over against him, saw that he so cried out,
and gave up the ghost, he said,
Truly this man was the Son of God.

King David states that the LORD always listens to the oppressed and always delivers them, and even though King David is suffering whilst he writes this Psalm he is praising the LORD in advance for his deliverance and for his kindness towards the oppressed. Psalm 22 is a prophetic psalm where King David prophesies about the times where all nations shall worship The LORD.

All the ends of the world shall remember and turn unto the Lord: and all the kindreds of the nations shall worship before thee. For the kingdom is the Lord’s: and he is the governor among the nations.

For good measure King David mentions that,

 … none can keep alive his own soul.

There’s a lot of comfort in that for me. I’ve been close to death a number of times and every time I’ve prayed to and relied on The LORD to keep me alive. As did the people around me. And every time The LORD answered our prayers and kept me alive. Praise The LORD! If I thought that it were up to me or the people around me to keep myself alive, I would fret endlessly about it and worry about doing the wrong thing. Knowing that  GOD is in charge makes me sleep well at night and gives my mind peace during the day.

The context of the phrase ‘live for ever.’

Even though the Psalmist is suffering to the point of death, and the outlook appears hopeless, just the same the Psalmist has faith and is confident that the LORD will save those who trust in Him and ensure that those who rely on Him in earnest will live for ever.

The relevance of the prophesy.

Jesus crucifixion, which took place around a thousand years after Psalm 22 was written, plays out at least part of the scenario as described in Psalm 22.

The finale is where GOD raises His Son Jesus from the grave to indeed live for ever as had been prophesied with already many of the world now remembering and turning unto the Lord: and many of the nations now worshiping before the LORD.

What do Psalm 22 and Jesus resurrection story have in common?

Both Psalm 22 and Jesus crucifixion and resurrection tell us that all those who trust in The LORD will be saved and may live for ever.

 

 

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Leap for joy … a message from Jesus about churches part two


Jesus often taught out in the open.

He healed them all.

Nowadays we think of churches and synagogues as buildings where believers get together and GOD’s Word is taught.
In the old days, churches and congregations were often at people’s houses or in the open. According to scripture Jesus regularly  taught out in the open.

Jesus often had large crowds following him and at various times he would also feed his followers. On this particular occasion Jesus stood in the plain, surrounded by his disciples and a great multitude of people out of all Judaea and Jerusalem, and from the sea coast of Tyre and Sidon. They all came to hear him and they came to be healed of their diseases. Everyone wanted to touch Jesus and he healed them all.

Blessed are ye, when men shall hate you, for my sake … leap for joy

Jesus told his followers not to worry if other gatherings would not receive them or throw them out because they were His followers. He said,

Blessed are ye, when men shall hate you, and when they shall separate you from their company, and shall reproach you, and cast out your name as evil, for the Son of man’s sake. Rejoice ye in that day, and leap for joy …

Hahaha, didn’t I tell you that GOD hath made me to laugh? I’m leaping alright!

Leap For Joy

Leap For Joy settings quality on our screen is best on 240p but may differ on different screens and can be adjusted on bottom right of screen by adjusting the little wheel next to the youtube symbol on the left.

 Leap for joy

The whole multitude sought to touch him:
for there went virtue out of him,
and healed them all.
And he lifted up his eyes on his disciples, and said,
Blessed be ye poor: for yours is the kingdom of God.
Blessed are ye that hunger now: for ye shall be filled.
Blessed are ye that weep now: for ye shall laugh.
Blessed are ye, when men shall hate you,
and when they shall separate you from their company,
and shall reproach you, and cast out your name as evil,
for the Son of man’s sake.
Rejoice ye in that day,
and leap for joy …

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A message from Jesus about churches – part one


Looking for a church with biblical values.

The other day I was talking with a friend who told me that she has not been able to find a church that reflects biblical values. Our chat reminded me of why I am writing this blog, which is to share my study on how to live for ever according to scripture. Many Christians and believers I’ve met have set ideas about ‘living for ever.’ Their beliefs are usually based on what their churches teach them. I decided to find out for myself what the bible has to say about ‘living for ever’ without church doctrine or denominational flavours.

The Second Commandment was taken out of the Catholic bible.

I was raised a Catholic and Catholics aren’t known to read their bible much. I used to sit in church with Mum and Dad and listen to sermons being preached in Latin. I was only a child and didn’t understand a word of what was being said in Latin. Even if I had understood I still would not have known if it was God’s Word or not because we were not encouraged to read our bible, so I would not have been able to cross reference.  I just assumed that churches preach God’s Word.

It wasn’t till years later that I discovered that the Catholic church actually changed the wording in their bible. For instance the Second Commandment has been taken out of the Catholic bible. This explains why idolatry is rife within the Catholic faith but that’s another story.
Before I read the bible I used to think that all church doctrine is based on scripture and I was really surprised to find out that this is definitely not always the case.

Jesus wasn’t too jazzed about churches.

On my blog I am sharing what GOD’s prophets and His Son have to say about ‘living for ever’ based on the words ‘live for ever’ as they appear throughout scripture. During my studies I discovered that Jesus isn’t too jazzed about what goes on in churches. Jesus sent stern warnings to various churches in the first three chapters and the last chapter of the book of Revelation, which is the last book in the bible.

Many of today’s churches teach us that ‘people are saved by faith.’ What does Jesus have to say to the churches about this? Jesus doesn’t tell us that we’re saved by faith only. Jesus tells us that it matters what we think as well as what we do,

… all the churches shall know that I am he which searcheth the reins and hearts:
and I will give unto every one of you according to your works

Jesus says that everyone will receive according to their works. He mentions this in the last book of the bible. First in the second chapter and then He repeats this in the last chapter. No promises here of special treatment for anyone. Just plain common sense .. according to your works.

Jesus says, I won’t acknowledge lawless ones as my own.

Is having your bum on a church pew as good as a ticket in?

Jesus did not say, ‘Oh well you believe in me, so therefore you’re part of my special posse.’ No, He said, believe on him that sent me. Jesus has specific requirements for his followers and there are many requirements that seemingly very dedicated followers won’t adhere to. This often happens because church doctrine confuses people and they’ve been made to believe that having their bum on a church pew is as good as a ticket in. Or church doctrine teaches people that a statement of faith is all that is required to receive eternal favours.

What did Jesus say about this? Jesus said, don’t come telling me that you’ve done all sorts of good things in my name if you don’t even get the basics right and refuse to follow my Father’s law.

Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven;
but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven.

Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name?
and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works?

And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you:
depart from me, ye that work lawlessness (iniquity).

It took me a little while to figure out who Jesus was referring to with the above scripture. Initially I found it hard to imagine that believers would think that they are above the law. Eventually I discovered that there are indeed many believers who are convinced that they have been made ‘holy’ and won’t have to make an effort to follow the commandments; just because they claim to have faith and believe in Jesus.

Thou believest that there is one GOD; Guess what? thou doest well: the devils also believe, and tremble … faith without works is dead.

Jesus says, ye hypocrites .. teaching for doctrines the commandments of men.

Jesus addressed the clergy of his time as hypocrites because of their church doctrine.

… Why do ye also transgress the commandment of God by your tradition?  ye made the commandment of God of none effect by your tradition … For laying aside the commandment of God, ye hold the tradition of men … Full well ye reject the commandment of God, that ye may keep your own tradition. … Ye hypocrites, in vain they do worship me, teaching for doctrines the commandments of men.

What the churches teach today is nothing new. They did the same in Jesus’ day, more than two thousand years ago. Churches still make up their own rules and regulations instead of sticking to the will of the Father and teach their followers to follow GOD’s commandments.

Jesus is the Son of GOD.

Jesus is the Son of GOD who came to earth to bare witness to his Father’s Word which is also called the truth. Just before He was crucified Jesus said,

To this end was I born, and for this cause came I into the world,
that I should bear witness unto the truth.
Every one that is of the truth heareth my voice.

Around one third of the word population claims to follow Jesus. But how many of us really do? How many of us walk as he walked?

Brethren, I write no new commandment unto you,
but an old commandment which ye had from the beginning.
The old commandment is the word which ye have heard
from the beginning.

Jesus preaching in the synagogue.

For people such as my friend referred to earlier in this post, who loves GOD’s Word but has not been able to find a church which reflects GOD’s Word; the following is what happened to Jesus when he spoke the truth in his own place of worship.

Jesus reading in the synagogue on the sabbath.

One day when Jesus was in Nazareth, where He had been brought up: and, as his custom was, He went into the synagogue on the sabbath day, and stood up for to read. And even though the churchgoers wondered at the gracious words which came out of his mouth; they also said, Is not this Joseph’s son? Jesus received a lukewarm reception because the people of the church knew him as the carpenter’s son.

Jesus speaking the truth and exposing hypocrisy.

Jesus continued his teaching by saying that being a believer doesn’t entitle anyone to favourable treatment. Jewish people are generally known as GOD’s chosen in a similar way that many Christians believe that they are Jesus’ chosen and entitled to special treatment and privileges. In the synagogue Jesus reminds the congregation that GOD sent special help and favour to a widow and her son who both were from a non-Jewish town. This was during a period of several years of severe drought when all Jewish people equally suffered throughout the drought. Yet a lady and her son from a non-Jewish town were helped by one of GOD’s prophets throughout the drought and favoured over and above all the believers.

With their hypocrisy exposed the ‘holier than thou’s’ in the church got so mad that they chased Jesus out of their church and city and attempted to throw Him down a hill.

The Son of God was thrown out of a church for speaking the truth.

Jesus ran away from the hypocrites and found himself another town where people were more receptive to his teachings and healings.

If you’ve been thrown out of a church or bible-reading gathering for speaking the truth and exposing hypocrisy; don’t fret, you’re in good company.

More messages from Jesus.

Other messages passed on by Jesus about preaching the gospel as relayed to his disciples were as follows,

The Kingdom of GOD is come nigh unto you.

Receiving the Good News is akin to accepting an invitation into the kingdom of GOD. Not everyone accepts this invitation. This may be because repentance goes hand in hand with this invitation and not everyone is genuinely remorseful about their muck-ups nor prepared to better themselves.

Step-by-step guidelines.

Following are step-by-step guidelines set by Jesus from start to finish for sharing the Good News, including what to do when the invitation is declined.

Jesus sent them forth by two and two.
And gave them power to heal all manner of sickness and disease.
He said, go as you are without dilly-dallying.
Bring wishes of peace.
Freely ye have received, freely give.
Accept what is given to you.
Stay where you’re invited.
Don’t go from house to house.
If they don’t receive you … leave.
Know that ye shall be hated of all men for my name’s sake.
When they persecute you in a city, flee ye into another.
Wipe the dust of your feet and let them know that
The kingdom of GOD came nigh unto them.
He that heareth you heareth me;
And he that despiseth you despiseth me;
And he that despiseth me despiseth him that sent me.

He that knoweth GOD heareth us.

If people are not receptive, move on.

If people are not interested in what you have to share about the gospel it is time to move on.

 he that knoweth GOD heareth us

Don’t go telling others how to believe according to your own faith. If people don’t (want to) hear you, let them be. Not everyone is able to hear unless drawn by The Father.

Set a good example.

Extraordinary as this may seem, there are believers who make it their business to tell others that GOD’s law is not applicable to them. This is what Jesus has to say about that,

Once more, just plain good old common sense tells us to set a good example by sticking to some basic rules and obey our Maker by not lying, nor killing nor stealing, nor coveting and so on. Just as Jesus did, who is our example and without sin.

Don’t offend little ones.

Jesus is not impressed if newcomers or little ones that believe in him are offended.

And whosoever shall offend one of these little ones that believe in me,
it is better for him that a millstone were hanged about his neck,
and he were cast into the sea.

Some well-meaning believers think it is their duty to impart their wisdom and understanding upon others. What is wisdom and understanding according to scripture?

The fear of the LORD, that is wisdom; and to depart from evil is understanding …
A good understanding have all they that do his commandments.

Judge not.

If someone is helping others in Jesus’ name but is not part of your congregation or church; Jesus says, leave them alone. Don’t go telling others how to believe according to your faith. If anyone does good work in Jesus’ name, that speaks for itself and is not to be rebuked. Judge not that you’ll be not judged for the LORD is our lawgiver and judge.

GOD’s message is a message of truth.

So to my friend and others who are not being welcomed into church communities, Jesus was very clear about it. GOD’s message is one of truth. The LORD shall judge the people with his truth. The bible tells us what truth means. GOD’s law is truth, his commandments are truth, his Word is truth. His truth endures for ever. The Word was made flesh … full of grace and truth. Jesus came to bear witness to the truth and He said that everyone that is of the truth hears Him.

If people are not teaching this message or receptive to this message, move on. GOD’s people will hear you and if people despise you when you share Good News, don’t be surprised. Jesus warned us that this is likely to happen.

Marvel not, my brethren, if the world hate you.

 

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A greeting fit for royalty


The greeting ‘live for ever’ throughout history.

The words ‘live for ever’ have been used throughout history as royal greetings.

King David

The third time the words ‘live for ever’ are mentioned in scripture is just before King David’s death. King David lived from c. 1040–970 BC. His reign over Judah was c. 1010–1002 BC, and his reign over the United Kingdom c. 1002–970 BC. When King David makes good on his promise to hand over the reign of his kingdom to his son Solomon; Bathsheba, his wife and the mother of Solomon, responds as follows,

Then Bathsheba bowed with her face to the earth, and did reverence to the king, and said, Let my lord king David live for ever.

King Artaxerxes

The fourth time that the phrase ‘live for ever’ is mentioned in the bible is in the second half of the fifth century BC, in the 20th year of Artaxerxes, the King of Persia.  Nehemiah is the cup-bearer to the King in Susa, the Persian capital and learns that the wall of Jerusalem is destroyed. Nehemia asks the king for leave to return to Jerusalem and rebuild its walls. The king doesn’t only grant permission but gives aid to Nehemia so that he can go and rebuild the walls.  

Nehemia said unto the king, Let the king live for ever …

The book of Daniel

It appears that the book of Daniel was written about events which took place in the sixth century B.C. with the final composition of the book made during the second century BC. In the book of Daniel we find in chapter 2, 3, 4, 5, 6 and 12 the words ‘live for ever’ mentioned as follows,

King Nebuchadnezzar

The seventh time that the words ‘live for ever are used in the bible, is in the third year of the reign of Jehoiakim king of Judah. This is when Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon came unto Jerusalem, and besieged it.  In the second year of the reign of Nebuchadnezzar, Nebuchadnezzar dreamed dreams which troubled him and

Then spake the Chaldeans to the king in Syriack, O king, live for ever: tell thy servants the dream, and we will shew the interpretation.

The eighth time the words ‘live for ever’ are used is when Nebuchadnezzar the king made an image of gold and commanded all people to fall down and worship the golden image.

After God spectacularly saved three of his devout followers, who refused to bow down to the golden image, from a fiery furnace, king Nebuchadnezzar made a decree.
And he said,  Blessed be the God of Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, who hath sent his angel, and delivered his servants that trusted in him, and have changed the king’s word, and yielded their bodies, that they might not serve nor worship any god, except their own God.

Therefore I make a decree, That every people, nation, and language, which speak any thing amiss against the God of Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, shall be cut in pieces, and their houses shall be made a dunghill: because there is no other God that can deliver after this sort.

During this whole process certain Chaldeans had accused the Jews and said to king Nebuchadnezzar,

O, king, live for ever.

King Nebuchadnezzar did not acknowledge that all his riches were blessings from God. As a result of his arrogance he lost his kingdom and found himself for seven years living with the beast of the field as had been prophesied to him by Daniel who was also called Belteshazzar.

At the end of his seven year exile Nebuchadnezzar’s reason returned unto him and he acknowledged our Creator as the most High, the King of heaven who lives for ever and said,  ‘Now I Nebuchadnezzar praise and extol and honour the King of heaven, all whose works are truth, and his ways judgment: and those that walk in pride he is able to abase.’

The ninth time the words ‘live for ever’ are mentioned in the bible is when Nebuchadnezzar praised God,

And at the end of the days I Nebuchadnezzar lifted up mine eyes unto heaven, and mine understanding returned unto me, and I blessed the most High, and I praised and honoured him that liveth for ever, whose dominion is an everlasting dominion, and his kingdom is from generation to generation …

King Belshazzar

The tenth time the words ‘live for ever’ are used is when Belshazzar the king made a great feast to a thousand of his lords. The king, and his princes, his wives, and his concubines, drank out of golden and silver containers that his father Nebuchadnezzar had taken out of the house of God, which was the temple in Jerusalem.
As they drank wine, and praised the gods of gold, and of silver, of brass, of iron, of wood, and of stone; fingers of a man’s hand appeared and wrote over against the candlestick upon the plaister of the wall of the king’s palace: and the king saw the part of the hand that wrote. And the king became extremely troubled.

Now the queen by reason of the words of the king and his lords came into the banquet house: and the queen spake and said, O king, live for ever: let not thy thoughts trouble thee, nor let thy countenance be changed …

King Darius

The eleventh time the words ‘live for ever’ are used is during the reign of king Darius when those in power set up a trap which had Daniel thrown into the lion den.

Then these presidents and princes assembled together to the king, and said thus unto him, King Darius, live for ever.

The twelfth time that the words ‘live for ever’ are used is when king Darius came to check in the morning to see if Daniel survived the lion’s den and found a cheery Daniel who greeted him,

Then said Daniel unto the king, O king, live for ever.

Daniel added that God hath sent him an angel to shut the lions mouth because Daniel was innocent before God as well as before the king. The king was so impressed that Daniel survived the lion’s den that he said, ‘I make a decree, that in every dominion of my kingdom men tremble and fear before the God of Daniel: for he is the living God, and stedfast for ever, and his kingdom that which shall not be destroyed, and his dominion shall be even unto the end. He delivereth and rescueth, and he worketh signs and wonders in heaven and in earth, who hath delivered Daniel from the power of the lions.’

The greeting ‘live for ever’ is commonly used to address royals.

From the above greetings we see that the greeting, ‘live for ever’ was commonly used to address royals. As mentioned above are the third, fourth, seventh, eight, ninth, tenth, eleventh and twelfth time that the words ‘live for ever’ are mentioned in scripture.

Batsheba addressed her husband King David with the greeting ‘live for ever.’ After this the prophet Nehemia addresses king Artaxerxes, the King of Persia in the same way. After this the Chaldeans to king Nebuchadnezzar in Syriack followed by King Nebuchadnezzar acknowledging our Creator as the most High, the King of heaven who lives for ever. Followed by the queen greeting Belshazzar the king with ‘live for ever’ and presidents and princes assembled together to king Darius, wishing him to live for ever. As well as Daniel himself greeting king Darius in this way.

Are our royals still greeted like this today?

Queen Elizabeth

At the Coronation of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II in the Abbey Church of St. Peter, Westminster, on the second day of June, 1953 after homage and alliance was pledged to the queen,

the drums beat, and the trumpets sounded, and all the people shouted, crying out:

God save Queen ELIZABETH.
Long live Queen ELIZABETH.
May the Queen live for ever.

From the above we can tell that the greeting ‘live for ever’ has been used throughout history to honour kings and queens as is in line with the promise made in scripture that those who obey God may live for ever.

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Give ear, O ye heavens, and I will speak …


Give ear, O ye heavens, and I will speak …

The second time

There are only a few occasions in the bible where heaven and earth are called as witnesses. This is one of these occurrences. You can find another couple here.

Moses calls upon the heavens and the earth to be witnesses

The prophet Moses calls upon the heavens and the earth to be witnesses to his speech before God’s people will enter the promised land. The second time that the words ‘live for ever’ are mentioned in the bible is when both the heavens and the earth are called as witnesses by the prophet Moses. He says,

Give ear, O ye heavens, and I will speak; and hear, O earth, the words of my mouth …

Moses, just before his death, continues to address all of God’s chosen and reminds them that our God is a just God and one of truth. Moses reminds the people that God made and saved his people and led them through the wilderness despite the people being perverse and corrupt. God did so alone without any other gods beside him.

Yet the people rewarded God’s kindness by sacrificing their children unto devils and strange gods.
Moses then prophesises that God will punish the lawbreakers and those without faith and He will reward those that hate Him.

It is suggested that in the day of judgment those people call upon their gods for help and ask for their statues and images to rise up and help and protect them.

It is your life

Moses tells the people that their Maker is pretty peeved with the mediocre loyalty and faithfulness He receives in return for the fierce loyalty and protection He gives to his people always.

Moses finishes his speech and prophesy by saying that our life depends upon following God’s law and we are to tell our children to do the same.

See now that I, even I, am he, and there is no god with me:
I kill, and I make alive; I wound, and I heal:
neither is there any that can deliver out of my hand.
For I lift up my hand to heaven, and say,

I live for ever …

Command your children to observe to do,
all the words of this law.
For it is not a vain thing for you;
because it is your life …

This is the second time in scripture that the words ‘live for ever’ are mentioned.

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How many times is ‘Live For Ever’ mentioned in the bible?


How many times is ‘live for ever’ mentioned in the bible?

In earlier posts I explained where the concept of living for ever came from.

How many times is ‘live for ever’ mentioned in the bible? That really depends upon what bible translation we’re reading. In a search throughout the King James translation of the bible the words ’live for ever’ come up 28 times but only around 19 of these apply to living forever and around 7 of these occasions were royal greetings. That leaves 12 other occasions where the words ‘live for ever’ are mentioned.

The first time

The first time the words, ‘live for ever’ are mentioned is in the third chapter of the bible.

 And the Lord God said, Behold, the man is become as one of us, to know good and evil: and now, lest he put forth his hand, and take also of the tree of life, and eat, and live for ever:

And the Lord God commanded the man.

In the previous chapter God had commanded Adam not to eat of the tree of knowledge of good and evil. God was clear enough about it, he said, ‘If you don’t do as I tell you, you will die.’

And the Lord God commanded the man, saying, Of every tree of the garden thou mayest freely eat: But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it: for in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die.

Some bible commentators say that Adam was given a choice but what I read is that God ‘commanded’ Adam not to eat of the tree. A command is like an order and not a choice as far as I’m concerned.
It follows  from the above scripture that if we do as God tells us to, we may live for ever and if we don’t, we’ll die.

Young’s literal bible

Young’s Literal bible translates the same verses as follows,

And Jehovah God layeth a charge on the man, saying, `Of every tree of the garden eating thou dost eat; and of the tree of knowledge of good and evil, thou dost not eat of it, for in the day of thine eating of it — dying thou dost die.’

According to scripture some will die twice. However those who overcome won’t die twice. Twice? Yes twice.

1599 Geneva Bible

Once more the same scripture verses, this time from the 1599 Geneva Bible (GNV),

And the Lord God commanded the man, saying, Thou shalt eat freely of every tree of the garden, But of the tree of knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it: for in the day that thou eatest thereof, thou shalt die the death.

Stay in God’s good books

What does it mean ‘to die the death?’ In the book of Revelation we’re told about the second death.

He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches; He that overcometh shall not be hurt of the second death.

He that overcometh shall inherit all things; and I will be his God, and he shall be my son. But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers, and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death.

In the first book of the bible, in the second chapter of the book of Genesis, we’re told  that those who disobey God will ‘die the death.’ And in the last book of the bible, in the second chapter of the book of Revelation, we are told that he that overcometh shall not be hurt of the second death.

We have to make sure that we are in God’s good books if we want to avoid the second death and live for ever.

And I saw the dead, small and great, stand before God; and the books were opened: and another book was opened, which is the book of life: and the dead were judged out of those things which were written in the books, according to their works.

 

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Qualifications


Credentials

What are my qualifications for writing a book on how to live forever? That is an excellent question and in some way also quite irrelevant considering that the information presented in ‘LIVE FOREVER how-to’ is not mine. It would be called plagiarism if it wasn’t that the author of the main book encourages his readers to share. The compilation of scripture verses in ‘LIVE FOREVER how-to’ are snippets of wisdom, collected straight from the source.

To put everyone’s mind at ease about my credentials and credibility I have the following to offer.

I read a lot and put what I read to good use.

Around ten years ago a cousin to whom I felt very close, came to tell me that he was going to live forever. He told me this just before he took his own life, a week later. His words prompted me to study living forever intensely for the next decade.

Over the last decade, I’ve read through the Bible most days to find the answers on to ‘how to live forever.’ That means that I roughly read around 1000 pages of the Bible, each year. I have distilled this information and intend to present this in an easy to read format of around 60 pages total, which can be casually meandered through within around ten minutes.

My background is varied and diverse.

I was raised a Catholic and married an atheist life saver as well as a Buddhist doctor, in that order and not at the same time. I grew up with brothers and sisters with wildly varying viewpoints and understandings of religion, the Bible, God and the church. My surroundings have been mainly secular inhabited by myriad good Samaritans. I have no hidden agenda nor a particular point to push across.

As a model I learned that imagery is deceptive.  As a secretary I learned that serving the boss comes first and everything else comes second. As a practice manager and director of a medical company I learned about suffering and my capacity for motivating others. As a wife and mum I learned that in the end the only thing that matters is just loving each other.

I’m considered a heretic.

Contrary to what the Catholic church preaches, I believe that God’s Word is over and above church doctrine. Because I was raised a Catholic and have been baptised into the Catholic church, the fact that I have different beliefs to the Catholic church makes me a heretic according to the Catholic doctrine.

Being seen to be a heretic according to church authorities means that my readers don’t have to be concerned that I’ll be injecting any kind of Catholic or any other church doctrine into my writing.

I am familiar with and respect worldly as well as religious perspectives.

Prior to reading the Bible I studied mysticism, practiced New Age disciplines as well as Wicca, Dzog Chen Buddhism and have come to understand the concepts of nothingness, yogic and tantric practices, enlightenment and states of bliss. This means that I am familiar with all different kinds of viewpoints and, even though I no longer participate in any of them, I respect those.

 I am not affiliated in any way with any manmade religion or doctrine.

I am not affiliated with any church, denomination, synagogue, temple or any manmade religion whatsoever. That means that my Scripture verses compilation is not coloured by any church or synagogue doctrine but is straight from the very source it came from; the bible, God’s Word.

I am an ace at how not to’s.

No further comment here, other than that I reckon in a round about way that this at least should qualify me for RPR (Recognised Prior Learning).

I love reading the Bible.

I enjoy nothing better than applying Scripture truths to daily life in a simple straight forward and no nonsense way. My greatest joy comes from sharing the peace and happiness that The Word brings me. I am anything but flawless and the Bible tells me that people such as I are qualified to receive and pass on Good News.

I occasionally read the news.

Every now and then I comment on news worthy events as the editor at the Lord’s Pub.

My Godchild and children teach me lots all the time.

As a mum and Godmother I’m supposed to know about certain things to do with heaven, birds and bees and so on. You can find me sharing and musing about these imponderables on the Babes and Little Children site.

I’ve got a thing for Instrumentals and old fashioned Dixie swing.

I know, it’s random but in my spare time I write lyrics for the band People is Grass which lives at itunes.

I’m head over heels.

I’m head over heels with the main character of my favourite book. I know that doesn’t give me any brownie points, just wanted to share that with you.

I know a few things about living for ever.

Although being a keen Bible reader on its own doesn’t necessarily qualify anyone for anything in particular, in my case it means that at a minimum I can tell my readers

a. Where the concept of living forever came from and

b. how many times this is mentioned in the Bible,

c. by whom,

d. and in what context.

e. Some of the main eligibility requirements for eternal life.

That is more than the average person will be able to tell you.

That’s a start.

 

all rights reserved copyright myemmanuel 2014