OceanSide church of Christ
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QUESTONS AND ANSWERS (2)
Victor M. Eskew
A. When Philip met the eunuch, he was reading from the prophet Isaiah (Acts 8:30).
1. The exact text was Isaiah 53:7-8 (Acts 8:32-33).
The place of the scripture which he read was this, He was led as a sheep to the slaughter; and like a lamb dumb before his shearer, so opened he not his mouth: in his humiliation his judgment was taken away: and who shall declare his generation? For his life is taken from the earth.
2. When the nobleman heard this passage, immediately a question issued forth from his lips (Acts 8:34).
And the eunuch answered Philip, and said, I pray thee, of whom speaketh the prophet this? of himself, or of some other man?
3. The heat was now on Philip. Would he be able to answer this man’s question? (Acts 8:35).
Then Philip opened his mouth, and began at the same scripture, and preached unto him Jesus.
B. We are, at times, like both of these men.
1. Sometimes we have questions.
2. Sometimes we are the ones answering questions.
C. In our lesson this evening, we are allowing you to ask the questions. We are going to do our best to answer some of the questions that have been posed. Remember, the Q & A box is on the table in the foyer. Please submit your questions along with your name, and we will try to answer them.
I. Is there a contradiction found within the conversion accounts of Saul? Please look at Acts 9:7 and Acts 22:9.
A. Let’s begin by reading the two verses.
1. Acts 9:7.
And the men which journeyed with him stood speechless, hearing a voice, but seeing no man.
2. Acts 22:9.
And they that were with me saw indeed the light, and were afraid; but they heard not the voice of him that spake to me.
B. The problem is very apparent. Acts 9:7 states that they heard a voice and Acts 22:9 declares that “they heard not the voice.”
C. The answer.
1. The Greek word is the same in both verses, “akouo,” to hear.
2. The cases of the verb are different, however.
a. In Acts 9:7, we find the genitive case. It expresses that certain sounds reached the ears of the men, but there is no indication of understanding.
b. In Acts 22:9, it is the accusative case. Here, the hearing involves an apprehension of the message spoken.
c. Saul’s companions heard certain sounds, but they did not comprehend the sounds they heard.
II. Please harmonize the apparent contradiction between II Samuel 24:24 and I Chronicles 21:25.
A. Again, let’s begin by reading the verses.
1. II Samuel 24:24.
And the king said to Arunah, Nay; but I will surely buy it of thee at a price: neither will I offer burnt offerings unto the Lord my God of that which doeth cost me nothing. So David bought the threshing floor and the oxen for fifty shekels of silver.
2. I Chronicles 21:25.
And king David said unto Ornan, Nay; but I will verily buy it for the full price: for I will not take that which is thine for the Lord, nor offer burnt offerings without cost. So David gave Ornan for the place six hundred shekels of gold by weight.
B. The problem is simple to state. The text of II Samuel indicates that David bought Arunah’s threshing floor and oxen for 50 shekels of silver. The book of II Chronicles reveals another price, six hundred shekels of gold by weight.
C. The answer.
1. Nowhere in the text of the Bible is the specific solution given.
2. It is here that we pose a “possible” solution to the problem. Remember, if there is a “possible” solution, there is no contradiction.
3. Two possible solutions.
a. One article in the Pulpit Commentary had this solution: “No other course is left, therefore, than to assume that the number must be corrupt in one of the texts.” The author makes the difficulty a transmission problem. During the time that the text was being copied, he believes that an error was made by one of the copyists. He specifically believes that the difficulty has to do with the fifty shekels of silver. NOTE: The problem is one of only a few, and it does not involve a major doctrinal issue.
b. Another answer is to assume that both prices were paid to Arunah. II Samuel says that David bought the threshing floor and oxen for fifty shekels of silver. I Chronicles reveals that David gave six hundred shekels of gold for “the place” the place being the entire land area upon which the threshingfloor stood.
4. Barnes Notes poses another possible answer. It does not really seem logical, however.
“In explanation, it is supposed – that the fifty shekels here mentioned were gold shekels, each worth twelve silver shekels, so that the fifty gold shekels are equal to the 600 shekels; that our text should be rendered, David bought the threshing floor and the oxen for money, viz., fifty shekels; and that the passage in Chronicles should be rendered, David gave to Ornan gold shekels of value (or weight) of 600 shekels” (Barnes Notes, F.C. Cook, ed., “Samuel-Esther,” p. 128).
III. If you are baptized and don’t go to church will you still go to heaven?
A. The phrase “go to church” involves the attendance of the worship services of the church. Thus, if one is baptized and does not attend the worship services, can he still go to heaven?
B. The answer to this question is a simple, “No.” The writer of Hebrews bluntly tells us not to forsake the assembly (Heb. 10:25).
Not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as the manner of some is; but exhorting one another: and so much the more, as ye see the day approaching.
1. Those who forsake the assembly have disobeyed a command of God.
2. Only those who obey the commandments will enter into the heavenly city (Rev. 22:14).
Blessed are they that do his commandments, that they many have right to the tree of life, and may enter in through the gates into the city.
C. This question and answer highlight the fact that there are conditions of salvation that come after one has become a Christian.
1. Obedience to the divine commands is one of the conditions of salvation following baptism.
2. If these conditions are not met, one can fall from the grace of God.
3. It is imperative, therefore, that we
a. Constantly examine ourselves (II Cor. 13:5).
Examine yourselves, whether ye be in the faith; prove your own selves. Know ye not your own selves, how that Jesus Christ is in you, except ye be reprobates?
b. Keep under our bodies and bring them into subjection (I Cor. 9:27).
But I keep under my body, and bring it into subjection: lest that by any means, when I have preached to others, I myself should be a castaway.
A. We have four (4) more questions that have been submitted. We will answer those next month.
B. Please, keep your questions coming.
C. The most important question one can ask is the one asked by the Jews on Pentecost Day (Acts 2:37).
Now when they heard this, they were pricked in their heart, and said unto Peter and to the rest of the apostles, Men and brethren, what shall we do?
D. Peter’s answer stands unto this day (Acts 2:38).
E. Those who gladly received his word, did as they were instructed (Acts 2:41). Won’t you gladly receive the word and do as they did?