Suzan sent the following e-mail message:
I just have a question about Revelation. Can you clear up the confusion? Who is the woman who runs into the desert to bear her child? To whom is John referring? Is it Mary or Hagar? The imagery is mind-boggling for a lay person.
The answer to Suzan’s question may, at first glance, seem somewhat circuitous, but please bear with me. Abraham, the father of Israel, was not chosen by God because he was a Hebrew. His mother and father both were Gentiles. Abraham was chosen because of his faith in God. Romans 4:3:
For what saith the scripture? Abraham believed God, and it was counted unto him for righteousness.
Just because one is born of Abraham does not make him the true seed of Abraham. Romans 9:6- 8:
6 Not as though the word of God hath taken none effect. For they are not all Israel, which are of Israel:
7 Neither, because they are the seed of Abraham, are they all children: but, In Isaac shall thy seed be called.
8 That is, They which are the children of the flesh, these are not the children of God: but the children of the promise are counted for the seed.
The seed of Abraham is Isaac, who was the miracle child of faith and obedience, and the seed of faith that was in Abraham was Christ. Galatians 3:16:
Now to Abraham and his seed were the promises made. He saith not, And to seeds, as of many; but as of one, And to thy seed, which is Christ.
The purpose of the seed of Abraham was to bring the Messiah into the world. The Messiah, of course, is Jesus Christ, who was the child of the Holy Ghost born of the Virgin Mary, and this Mary was of the true seed of Abraham. Again, the job of the seed of Abraham was to bring the Messiah unto Earth.
In the Old Testament, the children of Israel are often spoken of as being married to God. Remember that God is a Spirit—the life Spirit—and man is called to be one with God’s Spirit. When a man and woman marry, they, according to the Scriptures, become one flesh. This same principle takes place spiritually. Jesus said in John 17:21-23:
21 That they all may be one; as thou, Father, art in me, and I in thee, that they also may be one in us: that the world may believe that thou hast sent me.
22 And the glory which thou gavest me I have given them; that they may be one, even as we are one:
23 I in them, and thou in me, that they may be made perfect in one; and that the world may know that thou hast sent me, and hast loved them, as thou hast loved me.
Showing true fidelity to God is to cast off every imagination, thought, and doctrine of men and devils that are contrary to God and His Word, for His Words are spirit and life. This is how we become one with God.
Judah hath dealt treacherously, and an abomination is committed in Israel and in Jerusalem; for Judah hath profaned the holiness of the LORD which he loved, and hath married the daughter of a strange god.
Therefore the showers have been withholden, and there hath been no latter rain; and thou hadst a whore’s forehead, thou refusedst to be ashamed.
In the New Testament, the Christian ranks are spoken of in like manner. Romans 7:4:
Wherefore, my brethren, ye also are become dead to the law by the body of Christ; that ye should be married to another, even to him who is raised from the dead, that we should bring forth fruit unto God.
7 Let us be glad and rejoice, and give honour to him: for the marriage of the Lamb is come, and his wife hath made herself ready.
8 And to her was granted that she should be arrayed in fine linen, clean and white: for the fine linen is the righteousness of saints.
9 And he saith unto me, Write, Blessed are they which are called unto the marriage supper of the Lamb. And he saith unto me, These are the true sayings of God.
Understanding the principles just laid down, let’s read Genesis 37:9-11:
9 And he dreamed yet another dream, and told it his brethren, and said, Behold, I have dreamed a dream more; and, behold, the sun and the moon and the eleven stars made obeisance to me.
10 And he told it to his father, and to his brethren: and his father rebuked him, and said unto him, What is this dream that thou hast dreamed? Shall I and thy mother and thy brethren indeed come to bow down ourselves to thee to the earth?
11 And his brethren envied him; but his father observed the saying.
In Joseph’s dream, he sees the sun and moon, which are his father and mother, and the 11 stars, which are his brothers, all bowing down before him. These are the roots of Israel: Jacob, whose name is changed by God to Israel, and the 12 tribes made up of the descendants of Joseph and his 11 brothers, the offspring of Israel.
The scriptures record a woman in Revelation 12:1:
And there appeared a great wonder in heaven; a woman clothed with the sun, and the moon under her feet, and upon her head a crown of twelve stars:
This symbolism represents the righteous true seed of Israel, which is the seed of Abraham, whose purpose is to bring forth the Messiah. Our sister, the Virgin Mary, is not that woman. But as a true member of the seed of Abraham, she is part of that woman. Through Mary’s womb came the fulfillment of the Old Testament seed of Abraham’s calling.
The seed of faith, which was Christ, now continues in the church, His body, encompassing all that walk in the faith of faithful Abraham—Jews and Gentiles alike. Galatians 3:6-9, 14, and 27-29:
6 Even as Abraham believed God, and it was accounted to him for righteousness.
7 Know ye therefore that they which are of faith, the same are the children of Abraham.
8 And the scripture, foreseeing that God would justify the heathen through faith, preached before the gospel unto Abraham, saying, In thee shall all nations be blessed.
9 So then they which be of faith are blessed with faithful Abraham.
14 That the blessing of Abraham might come on the Gentiles through Jesus Christ; that we might receive the promise of the Spirit through faith.
27 For as many of you as have been baptized into Christ have put on Christ.
28 There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither bond nor free, there is neither male nor female: for ye are all one in Christ Jesus.
29 And if ye be Christ’s, then are ye Abraham’s seed, and heirs according to the promise.
Sister Suzan, the answer is not a person but the entire seed of faithful Abraham. Hagar, by the way, is the antithesis of the seed of faith. Read Galatians 4:22-31.
A visitor to GodSaidManSaid named Chris posed this question, "What does God say about cigarette smoking?" The scriptures make no statement about cigarettes specifically, but in general the answer is found in I Corinthians 3:16-17:
16 Know ye not that ye are the temple of God, and that the Spirit of God dwelleth in you?
17 If any man defile the temple of God, him shall God destroy; for the temple of God is holy, which temple ye are.
I Corinthians 6:16-20:
16 What? know ye not that he which is joined to an harlot is one body? for two, saith he, shall be one flesh.
17 But he that is joined unto the Lord is one spirit.
18 Flee fornication. Every sin that a man doeth is without the body; but he that committeth fornication sinneth against his own body.
19 What? know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own?
20 For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God’s.
II Corinthians 6:14-18:
14 Be ye not unequally yoked together with unbelievers: for what fellowship hath righteousness with unrighteousness? and what communion hath light with darkness?
15 And what concord hath Christ with Belial? or what part hath he that believeth with an infidel?
16 And what agreement hath the temple of God with idols? for ye are the temple of the living God; as God hath said, I will dwell in them, and walk in them; and I will be their God, and they shall be my people.
17 Wherefore come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing; and I will receive you,
18 And will be a Father unto you, and ye shall be my sons and daughters, saith the Lord Almighty.
The word "defile" used in the first passage is defined by Noah Webster’s 1828 dictionary as "to make unclean; to render foul or dirty; in a general sense." [End of quote]
The first Scripture passage, dealing with the principle of our bodies being the temple of God, is a general one. The second deals with fornication, which includes any manner of illicit sex. The third deals with being separate from sinners. Defiling your temple results from many deeds of disobedience, which would include the use of alcoholic beverages, cocaine, marijuana, cigarettes, socializing with sinners, gluttony, and if you do your research, various foods that prematurely destroy the body. In this issue, it is obvious that we should be busy searching out our own selves. I Thessalonians 4:3-7:
3 For this is the will of God, even your sanctification, that ye should abstain from fornication:
4 That every one of you should know how to possess his vessel in sanctification and honour;
5 Not in the lust of concupiscence, even as the Gentiles which know not God:
6 That no man go beyond and defraud his brother in any matter: because that the Lord is the avenger of all such, as we also have forewarned you and testified.
7 For God hath not called us unto uncleanness, but unto holiness.
The following e-mail message is from Zach concerning a feature on this website titled "One Long Missing Day and the Cry of the Skeptics." It follows in part:
I was investigating a forward I got in an e-mail, and saw that link elsewhere on the site. That story is also referenced in a book I have called 301 Proofs and Prophecies Proving God Exists. Unfortunately it’s not true, and NASA really has issued a public statement about its falsehood. It was just really strange how I stumbled upon that this morning by accident, hours before even knowing of your site’s existence. Maybe God arranged things for me to e-mail you about this. I don’t know. I just wanted to inform you about this. So far, this is the only thing on this site that I have found disagreeable. I don’t blame you because I also have believed this story for years. Anyway, thank you for your time, and God Bless! Please e-mail me and let me know what you decide to do!
Dear Brother Zach, thank you for your consideration. GodSaidManSaid did not endorse or discredit Harold Hill’s experience concerning the missing day spoken of in the book of Joshua and II Kings, but declared the controversy. We went on to endorse the Biblical record with scholarly research and history from the following:
∙ British Chronological Association
∙ Various ancient civilizations
In defense of Mr. Hill, it should be noted that Charles Totten’s work included the alignment of lunar and solar calendars. Mr. Hill’s statement was, "I think one of the most amazing things that God has for us today happened recently to our astronauts checking the position of sun, moon and planets out in space."