II Samuel 4

1. When Saul’s son heard that Abner had died in Hebron, he lost heart, and all Israel was troubled.

Now Saul’s son Ishbosheth, who was ruling over the rest of Israel other than Judah, is greatly disheartened to hear of Abner’s death in Hebron. His supporters in all Israel are troubled at the death of this great man and Ishbosheth’s greatest supporter. They now have a weak king whose only great advantage, the strong man Abner, is gone. Yet they now also have no strong man to lead them in choosing David as king, as Abner planned to do. If Joab had left Abner alone, he may well have brought about David’s reign over Israel at this time. Instead, David is still going to have to wait. Read the rest of this entry »


I received the following question:

When you have some time,

Question concerning the promises spoken in Hebrews 11

Please give a little explanation:

Vs 13 Says “These all died in faith, not having received the promises……
Vs 16 “But now they desire a better, that is a heavenly country, Therefore God is not ashamed to be called their God, for He has prepared a city for them.”
Vs 17 “By faith Abraham…….and he who had received the promises offered up ……
Vs 33 “Through faith ….. obtained promises……
Vs 39 “All these, having obtained a good testimony through faith, did not receive the promise

Vs 13 and 39 says did not receive the promises, the others verses says they received the promises.

Thank you

I would be happy to answer your questions.

Hebrews 11:13. Read the rest of this entry »

I received the following question:

Apostolos is used in both Acts period books as well as later, including Eph.4 where apostles and prophets are mentioned with pastors and teachers. Many post Acts letters by Paul use it as part of his credentials. He was an apostle to the nations. (We) thought that apostles are called by God, that there are not any prophets or apostles in the Acts period sense today. Is the definition changed by context as to what an apostle can do today? Some denominations differ with us, i.e. Pentecostals. With the Word in final form, isn’t it the Word that can be used instead of an apostle commissioned by God who is given God’s message?

You ask a very good question. We know that the book of Acts is the record of the “Acts” of the apostles, and so we believe this book records the fact that they not only spoke words they were commissioned to speak, but also performed acts they were commissioned to act, so that both their words and their actions were Divinely inspired. This then raises the question of why there would have been anyone apostled after the dispensation changed? In our day, the Word itself is apostled, as you say, and It is our apostle to lead us to Christ. We do not believe that we have apostles today either whose words or whose actions are inspired. Why, then, are apostles mentioned in post Acts 28:28 books? Read the rest of this entry »

II Samuel 3 Continued

17. Now Abner had communicated with the elders of Israel, saying, “In time past you were seeking for David to be king over you.

This tells us that Abner had already spoken for David to the elders of Israel. He actually reminded them that they were ready and even seeking to make David king in time past. This was probably before Ishbosheth’s claim won out. This was, in fact, largely the situation that Abner himself had brought about, for it was he who had convinced the elders to be loyal to the house of Saul and to leave David to rule only over the tribe of Judah. Yet now Abner seeks to undo what he did before due to his anger with Ishbosheth. Read the rest of this entry »

II Samuel 3

1. Now there was a long war between the house of Saul and the house of David. But David grew stronger and stronger, and the house of Saul grew weaker and weaker.

This situation results in a long war between the house of Saul and the house of David. Of course, this does not mean that only their families were fighting, but rather that these two kingly houses were battling one another through the nations they ruled. This also does not mean that there were constant battles going on all during this time. There would have been skirmishes and battles, but not full-scale war at all times. In fact, we have no evidence that either side went to full-scale war with the other, or that either side attempted to invade and take captive the other. These two brother nations are at war, but the hostilities do not appear to have escalated to that point. Read the rest of this entry »

II Samuel 2

1. It happened after this that David inquired of the LORD, saying, “Shall I go up to any of the cities of Judah?”
And the LORD said to him, “Go up.”
David said, “Where shall I go up?”
And He said, “To Hebron.”

After the mourning of David and his men over their king and prince, he enquires of the LORD. David probably did this by Urim and Thummim, those two stones in the ephod or breastpiece of the high priest whereby one could ask questions of the LORD. Remember that the high priest Abiathar is still with David, since he had fled to him when Saul had murdered all the LORD’s priests in his mad fear of David due to his paranoid idea that they had conspired with him. Therefore, David has the means to contact the LORD this way, whereas Saul’s company had lost their access to such contact with God, if indeed they even wanted it. Read the rest of this entry »

I received the following question:

Was wondering if you have “Precepts” study guide(s) that address position in the Kingdom & position now (in the dispensation of grace) as we get ready for the coming Kingdom.

Nathan: I would be happy to answer your questions. I have spoken of these matters in a recent “Precepts” issue on “Kingdom Impacts in the Dispensation of Grace.” I have attached this study.

However, that is mostly about our position in the kingdom to come, and how God would have us to live now. So I will go on now and answer your second question, regarding what our position is before God now in the dispensation of grace. Read the rest of this entry »

I received the following question:

1 John 5:6,8

Hi Nathan,

Hope you’re doing well, need your opinion on the use of the word “water” in the above subject verses. Does it have anything to do with water baptism?

Best Regards

6. This is He who came by water and blood—Jesus Christ; not only by water, but by water and blood. And it is the Spirit who bears witness, because the Spirit is truth.

8. And there are three that bear witness on earth: the Spirit, the water, and the blood; and these three agree as one.

The key in this portion is the witness. The Greek is the word martureo, from which we get our English word “martyr.” This same word occurs in two important places in the gospel of John. First consider John 1:32-34. Read the rest of this entry »

I received the following question:

I need help, please, understanding the gospel of salvation in the Acts period.

Were different gospels of salvation preached during the Acts period?

It’s my understanding that the 2 gospels (of the circumcision, of the uncircumcision) in Galatians 2 were actually gospels offered TO the two different groups, not 2 different gospels as Mid-Acts teaches.

It is also my understanding that the gospel of the kingdom is not a gospel of salvation at all, but just an announcement that the long-awaited kingdom is near.

Is everyone in the Acts period saved by grace through faith?

Clearly I am confused, and I appreciate your help.

I will be happy to help you out with your questions regarding the gospel. Read the rest of this entry »

I received the following question:

How does one know the Holy Spirit is working with him when he honestly and laboriously works with the Word? (Since many who seem to labor hard at the truth never discover any advances beyond what they are taught) is it true that (the Holy Spirit works only with scholars for advances in truth), but in such a way, no one could ever know, even the scholar He works with. I would appreciate any comments you might have on this issue as I see it.

You bring up an important issue, and one that I will be happy to answer as best I can. You complain that an average student with average intelligence is probably not going to be able to study the Word of God and bring forth new truth and new light. This may well be true. I do not think that everyone is cut out to be a Mr. Sellers, or a Dr. Bullinger, or a scholar of that caliber. You are right that most people end up just struggling to “catch up” to others who have already walked the same ground they are seeking to walk before them. Blazing new trails is difficult. If I have done this in the past, even that is no guarantee that I will ever be able to do it again. Read the rest of this entry »