We have been studying the future period of time that we call the revolt against the kingdom. This period will be a most strange one on earth, yet it is a very critical one in God’s plans. It is set forth in many passages of Scripture. All the truth regarding Daniel’s seventieth week is related to this period. The entirety of the first nineteen chapters of Revelation is related to this time as well. Yet there are also many other passages that deal with this critical time of testing in the kingdom. Let us examine some of these passages and learn what we can about the revolt against the kingdom.

Psalm 2

The first passage we will consider that has to with the revolt against the kingdom is Psalm 2.

1. Why do the nations rage,
And the people plot a vain thing?

Psalm 2 opens with a question. It regards the nations at the time of the revolt against the kingdom. After centuries of peace and stability, something has changed, and the nations now appear as a turbulent sea. The sea is a common figure for the nations and their peoples. Consider its use in Isaiah 57:20. Read the rest of this entry »

It is my conviction that we are currently living in the dispensation of the grace of God. In this dispensation, God works with all mankind on earth under the principles of grace, of faith, and of secrecy. If God cannot act in grace, then He does not act at all. If men will not believe by faith in God’s Word, then God will not give them anything else to believe in. And God hides all His works in secret, so that the skeptical man can deny that He is working at all.

This is what God is doing today, but it is not what He will be doing forever. God has a plan to carry out, and someday when this dispensation has run its course, He will begin a new work on earth. When that work begins, next on God’s agenda is a dispensation of God’s government upon earth. God’s government will take control of all nations on earth, and God Himself will govern them. God is not governing in this world now. Instead, He is allowing all men to walk in their own ways. Yet in spite of our advances in science and technology, this world needs God to govern it now more than ever. Read the rest of this entry »

I would like to remind my readers that I am a regular column contributor to the Word of Truth Ministry’s Bulletin. This last Bulletin, my article was on “Passion in the Life of a Believer,” discussing the enthusiasm we should all have as believers in the Bible and in the Lord Jesus Christ. I consider passion for our fellow believers, for our families, for the truth, and for God Himself. Read this article at:


Thank you to all of you who have been reading and enjoying my Precepts writings for many years! I wanted to update you on my radio ministry, as announced in a previous article. I am no longer broadcasting on Sundays as of Sunday, January 25, 2015. My ministry “Knowing God in the Word” is now funded and supported by The Word of Truth Ministry of Canyon Country, California. The program is still a half hour radio show, and is now broadcast on four different radio stations. Read the rest of this entry »

Before we close out our study of the return of the Holy Spirit, there is one question that may need to be answered for some of my readers. I have been speaking of the return of the Holy Spirit. Yet there are others who speak of something similar, a second sending of the Holy Spirit, and yet who connect it with the charismatic revival of modern days. This idea is often called the “latter rain,” and consists of the idea that the Holy Spirit that was sent at Pentecost returned in the manifestation of the charismatic gifts that started around 1901 at the beginning of the Pentecostal movement. So we will consider this question before we close our study. How does the second coming of the Holy Spirit relate to the “latter rain” idea that many set forth, especially in the charismatic movement?

The idea that is set forth by those who claim to be a part of this “latter rain” experience is that the “former rain” was the pouring out of the Holy Spirit at Pentecost and throughout the Acts period, while the “latter rain” is the pouring out of the Holy Spirit that is being experienced now by those in the charismatic and Pentecostal movements. They claim this idea is found in Scripture, so we will examine the evidence found there. The phrase “latter rain” occurs in eight passages in the Scriptures, so it will be a simple matter to consider them all. Read the rest of this entry »

Another great verse from the Psalms speaking of this light from heaven, this word God sends into the world through the Spirit, is Psalm 76:8.

8. You caused judgment to be heard from heaven;
The earth feared and was still,

This verse is in the past tense, yet this is an example of an important Biblical principle: that God often speaks of those things that are not as if they were, or, as the New King James puts it in Romans 4:17, “calls those things which do not exist as though they did.” This does not mean that God says untrue things, but rather that God speaks of things that do not yet exist as if they already did. He speaks of things that have not yet taken place as if they had already taken place and were in the past. That is what God is doing here. He is speaking of what is going to happen in the future as if we were already beyond it and looking back on it from the future. Read the rest of this entry »

We have been studying the great future event of the return or second coming of the Holy Spirit. He first came or was sent at the feast of Pentecost in Acts 2, and yet Scripture makes it clear that He will be sent again in the future, when the Spirit will be poured out on all flesh.

During His earthly ministry, the Lord Jesus proclaimed both the first and the second comings of the Holy Spirit. In regards to His first coming, let us consider John 14:16-17.

16. And I will pray the Father, and He will give you another Helper, that He may abide with you forever— 17. the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it neither sees Him nor knows Him; but you know Him, for He dwells with you and will be in you.

The word translated “Helper” is the Greek word for a “Paraclete,” parakletos. While we do not use “paraclete” much in modern English, it is recognized as an English word at dictionary.reference.com, which defines it as an “advocate or intercessor.” The idea of the Greek word is of “one who comes alongside to help.” The Lord had been this up to now to His disciples, but as He is speaking in John 14 He is about to leave them, and so now He will pray the Father that He will send the Holy Spirit to abide with them for the outflow and be the advocate or intercessor for them. He defines this Spirit as “the Spirit of truth.” The world cannot receive this Spirit, for it neither sees Him nor knows Him, but the disciples know Him since they know the Lord Jesus, Who dwelt with them already. Yet when He sent the Spirit as their Paraclete, He would be in them. Read the rest of this entry »

water02I received the following question:

Nathan, will you please explain to me your views on water baptism? Thanks.

Thanks for the question regarding water baptism. I will try to answer as briefly as I can, and as clearly as I can. Yet this is a complicated issue, and the answer is not simple.

The fact is that the word “baptism” is basically a Greek word that has not been translated when bringing it into English. Whatever our English ideas about baptism might be, the real question is what the idea of baptism was to one who spoke Greek? To answer this, we would need to consider the use of the Greek word baptisma, and its related verb baptizo. Read the rest of this entry »

waiting02I received the following question:

I am having a difficult time understanding Romans 8:19-21.  I understand Paul is writing to those exiled Israelites in Rome.  What I am confused about is where Paul speaks about the creation waiting for the manifestation (revealing?) of the sons of God.  Also, in v.21 where it speaks of the creation being delivered into the glorious liberty (glorified state with liberty as a characteristic?) of the children of God.

Who are the sons (huios) of God in v.19 and who are the children ((teknon) of God in v. 21 and how and why would the creation (ktiseos) anxiously expect them?

Any help you can give would be appreciated very much.

The passage in question starts out talking about those who walk, not according to the flesh, but according to the Spirit (verse 1). These, in the Acts period, were set free from the law of sin and death (verses 2-11). This extended to their minds being absorbed in the things of the Spirit. Their life came from the Spirit, and this resulted in them being sons of God, that is, those who represented His character, as well as representing Him in their actions. They were God’s children, as verses 16-17 make clear. Read the rest of this entry »

We discussed in our last message that, even though we call two events Christ’s “first coming” and His “second coming” or return, these are not the only times Christ has actually appeared on earth. In the same way, when we speak of the “return of the Holy Spirit,” we do not mean to imply that the Spirit has only been sent twice, or even that He is not active on earth now. The fact is that the Holy Spirit has been active upon earth since the very beginning. The first time we read of the Spirit is in Genesis 1:2.

2. The earth was without form, and void; and darkness was on the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God was hovering over the face of the waters.
3. Then God said, “Let there be light”; and there was light.

In the first appearance of the Holy Spirit in Scripture, He brought light to the world. Bringing light is one of the Spirit’s activities, and one of the reasons for which God sends Him. This brings us to an important principle about the Holy Spirit that we need to learn: when God sends Him, He always accomplishes exactly what God sent Him to accomplish, and nothing more nor less. Some people seem to have the idea that the Spirit always does the same thing when He comes upon people. Some think, for example, that when the Spirit comes upon anyone, that that person will always speak with tongues. Others think that when the Spirit comes, He will always make a person a flaming witness or a powerful speaker. Yet the Spirit can do many things when He comes upon people. He is not limited to only doing certain things. For a clear example of this, consider Exodus 31:1-5. Read the rest of this entry »


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