Wednesday, August 25, 2010

daniel 12:7 adn preterism


Preterists quote Daniel 12:7 to prove that God ended His unique relationship with the nation Israel in A. D. 70 after He had finally “scattered the power of the holy people.”

Dan 12:7 … it shall be for a time, times, and an half; and when he shall have accomplished to scatter the power of the holy people, all these things shall be finished.

1. What does “all these things” refer to? Everything in the book of Daniel? The events of Daniel 11 and 12? Only the abomination of desolation of the Temple from Daniel 11 and 12? The rule of the little horn or Daniel 7? Or only when God will finish “scattering the power of the holy people”? Does this say that God is “finished” dealing with Israel as a nation?

Dan 12:11 And from the time that the daily sacrifice shall be taken away, and the abomination that maketh desolate set up, there shall be a thousand two hundred and ninety days.

2. Daniel 12:11 ends with the persecuting power victorious and makes the setting up of the abomination of desolation the final event. Yet common sense teaches that there must be more.

Dan 12:12 Blessed is he that waiteth and cometh to the thousand three hundred and five and thirty days.

3. Daniel 12:12 says there is a blessing on those who survive until the end of 1335 days which is 75 days after the “finish” of the 1260 days (3 ½ times) of 12:7. Therefore the “bad” “finish” of 12:7 has changed into an “blessing” 75 days later.

Dan 12:13 But go thou thy way till the end be: for thou shalt rest, and stand in thy lot at the end of the days.

4. According to Preterists the general resurrection of the dead occurred in A. D. 70 at the end of the days of Daniel 12:7. If this were true there must be at least one more general resurrection from the dead of those who have died since A.D. 70.

Dan 12:1 And at that time shall Michael stand up, the great prince which standeth for the children of thy people: and there shall be a time of trouble, such as never was since there was a nation even to that same time: and at that time thy people shall be delivered, every one that shall be found written in the book.

5. Daniel 12:7 is a brief repeat of the final events of chapter 11. The event which immediately follows the desolation of Daniel 11 is the restoration of national Israel by Michael in Daniel 12:1-2. At the end of the time of trouble Messiah will return and resurrect the righteous dead -- at that time thy people shall be delivered. In the context of the book of Daniel this refers only to national Israel but in Revelation 20:6 it refers to all saints. Thus Israel will be finally restored for the Millennial reign of Messiah on earth per Revelation 20. This will occur after the end of the 3 ½ times of Daniel 12:7.

Dan 2:35 Then was the iron, the clay, the brass, the silver, and the gold, broken to pieces together, and became like the chaff of the summer threshingfloors; and the wind carried them away, that no place was found for them: and the stone that smote the image became a great mountain, and filled the whole earth.

Dan 2:44 And in the days of these kings shall the God of heaven set up a kingdom, which shall never be destroyed: and the kingdom shall not be left to other people, but it shall break in pieces and consume all these kingdoms, and it shall stand for ever.

6. Daniel 2:35, 44 clearly show that God will set up a literal physical kingdom ON EARTH which consumes and replaces the literal physical kingdoms of Babylon, Persia, Greece, Rome and Confederated Rome.

Dan 7:25 And he shall speak great words against the most High, and shall wear out the saints of the most High, and think to change times and laws: and they shall be given into his hand until a time and times and the dividing of time.

Dan 7:26 But the judgment shall sit, and they shall take away his dominion, to consume and to destroy it unto the end.

Dan 7:27 And the kingdom and dominion, and the greatness of the kingdom under the whole heaven, shall be given to the people of the saints of the most High, whose kingdom is an everlasting kingdom, and all dominions shall serve and obey him.

Dan 7:28 Hitherto is the end of the matter …

7. Daniel 7:25-28 parallel Daniel 12:7; both mention the 3 ½ time period. Notice the word “until.” This means that “after” the 3 ½ time period ends, Israel will be restored as a nation on earth. The “end” of 7:26 is the “finished” of 12:7. Daniel 7:27 is not a description of heaven itself and must be a literal physical kingdom on earth as in 2:35, 44. The “end of the matter” is not in 12:7 but in 7:27.

Dan 8:13 … How long shall be the vision concerning the daily sacrifice, and the transgression of desolation, to give both the sanctuary and the host to be trodden under foot?

Dan 8:14 And he said unto me, Unto two thousand and three hundred days; then shall the sanctuary be cleansed (restored).

8. In a slightly different setting Daniel 8:13-14 is the same time period of 3 ½ times as seen in 7:25 and 12:7. It is a secondary fulfillment of the events of 168-165 B. C. The 2300 evening-morning sacrifices covers almost 3 ½ years. The point here is that the time period ends with the sanctuary on earth being restored (although necessarily in the context of the New Covenant) per Jeremiah 31 and Hebrews 8.

Dan 9:18 O my God, incline thine ear, and hear; open thine eyes, and behold our desolations, and the city which is called by thy name: for we do not present our supplications before thee for our righteousnesses, but for thy great mercies.

Dan 9:19 O Lord, hear; O Lord, forgive; O Lord, hearken and do; defer not, for thine own sake, O my God: for thy city and thy people are called by thy name.

Dan 9:24 Seventy weeks are determined upon thy people and upon thy holy city, to finish the transgression, and to make an end of sins, and to make reconciliation for iniquity, and to bring in everlasting righteousness, and to seal up the vision and prophecy, and to anoint the most Holy.

9. In Daniel 9 the prophet was concerned about the desolated and destroyed temple from 586 B. C. He reminded God that He must restore Jerusalem “for thine own sake, for thy name” because God would appear unfaithful after His many unconditional promises from Abraham to David and through the prophets. Even though God answered that there would be even more future desolations of future temples, the final outcome would be a final “anointing of the most holy place” of the Temple as seen in Daniel 8:14.

Monday, August 23, 2010


MATTHEW 19:28; LUKE 22:29-30; REVELATION 20:3-4, 7, 8; 21:1-2, 12 JUDGING TWELVE TRIBES

Many Christian denominations teach that there will be no literal Messianic kingdom reign on earth. In Matthew 19:28 and Luke 22:29-30 Jesus promised His disciples that they would sit on twelve thrones judging the twelve tribes of Israel after they had been resurrected and regenerated. This cannot be a description of heaven and must refer to God’s future kingdom on earth.

Matt 19:28 And Jesus said unto them, Verily I say unto you, That ye which have followed me, in the regeneration when the Son of man shall sit in the throne of his glory, ye also shall sit upon twelve thrones, judging the twelve tribes of Israel.

Luke 22:29 And I appoint unto you a kingdom, as my Father hath appointed unto me;

Luke 22:30 That ye may eat and drink at my table in my kingdom, and sit on thrones judging the twelve tribes of Israel.

The promise Jesus made to His disciples that they would sit on twelve thrones judging the twelve tribes on earth is to be fulfilled during the Millennial reign as seen in Revelation 20:3-4, 7-8.

Rev 20:3 And cast him into the bottomless pit, and shut him up, and set a seal upon him, that he should deceive the nations no more, till the thousand years should be fulfilled: and after that he must be loosed a little season.

Rev 20:4 And I saw thrones, and they sat upon them, and judgment was given unto them: and I saw the souls of them that were beheaded for the witness of Jesus, and for the word of God, and which had not worshipped the beast, neither his image, neither had received his mark upon their foreheads, or in their hands; and they lived and reigned with Christ a thousand years.

Rev 20:7 And when the thousand years are expired, Satan shall be loosed out of his prison,

Rev 20:8 And shall go out to deceive the nations which are in the four quarters of the earth, Gog and Magog, to gather them together to battle: the number of whom is as the sand of the sea.

Even the new earth and eternity will for ever remind saints that God never did forget His chosen nation. In Revelation 21:1, 2, 12 The eternal city of the new earth is only entered through twelve gates with the names of the twelve tribes of Israel. This makes no sense if God had permanently rejected Israel as His unique chosen nation.

Rev 21:1 And I saw a new heaven and a new earth: for the first heaven and the first earth were passed away; and there was no more sea.

Rev 21:2 And I John saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down from God out of heaven, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband.

Rev 21:12 And had a wall great and high, and had twelve gates, and at the gates twelve angels, and names written thereon, which are the names of the twelve tribes of the children of Israel.

Sunday, August 22, 2010



Those who do not believe in a future literal reign of Christ on earth quote Luke 17:20 as a proof text.

Luke 17:20 And when he was demanded of the Pharisees, when the kingdom of God should come (erchetai) he answered them and said, The kingdom of God cometh (erchetai) not with observation.

The Pharisees assumed that the real Messiah would initially come like most kings with a sudden highly visible announcement of majesty, power, splendor and outward physical conquest.

Jesus was not saying that the kingdom of God would not be a literal physical kingdom on earth. Such would contradict all the prophets which He had previously inspired. He simply denied that the kingdom would come in the manner which the Pharisees expected. Jesus was saying that its initial “coming” would not be observable because the initial coming of God’s kingdom is an inner change of the heart (17:21). The first disciples’ desire to see just one of the days of the Messiah would end in disappointment because Israel had rejected its Messiah and the visible coming of His kingdom would be long delayed (17:22).

Luke 17:24 For as the lightning, that lighteneth out of the one part under heaven, shineth unto the other part under heaven; so shall also the Son of man be in his day.

When some shall say “Here or there is the kingdom” do not believe them (17:23). When the kingdom does arrive visibly, you will know it because it will be as visible as lightning (17:24).

Friday, August 20, 2010



It is the purpose of this article to demonstrate that the phrase “kingdom of heaven” cannot refer to everyday life in heaven itself and must refer to life on earth.

When Jesus said “the kingdom of heaven is like,” He was describing how life should be under God’s rule on earth. Some of the 32 references apply to current life during the “mystery” phase of the kingdom of God. However many of the 32 references can only be logically explained as how life will be during the future theocratic kingdom rule of Messiah on earth. Since sin is often involved, most of the “kingdom of heaven” phrases cannot refer to heaven itself.

All 32 references to the “kingdom of heaven” are in Matthew, the Gospel to the Jews. As a covenanted kingdom it is the national hope of Israel (2 Sam 7:4-17). John the Baptist, Christ, and the apostles announced that the kingdom of national Israel was "at hand." That offer was rejected and, in its earthly manifested form, was postponed until Christ's second advent. According to Matthew 13 the present gospel age only represents the mystery form of the kingdom. If there is to be no future kingdom of God’s direct rule on earth, then Jesus’ phrase “the kingdom of God is like” makes no sense.

Matt 3:1 In those days came John the Baptist, preaching in the wilderness of Judaea,
Matt 3:2 And saying, Repent ye: for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.

John was telling Israel that the Messiah was about to appear and acceptance of the Messiah would quickly usher in the long-promised and long-awaited theocratic Kingdom in which God would rule over the entire earth from Jerusalem.

Matt 5:10 Blessed are they which are persecuted for righteousness' sake: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.

Jesus was teaching that those who have been persecuted for righteousness’ sake will be rewarded in the future kingdom of God on earth.

Matt 5:19 Whosoever therefore shall break one of these least commandments, and shall teach men so, he shall be called the least in the kingdom of heaven: but whosoever shall do and teach them, the same shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven .

Matt 5:20 For I say unto you, That except your righteousness shall exceed the righteousness of the scribes and Pharisees, ye shall in no case enter into the kingdom of heaven.

Verse 19 is not describing sin in heaven itself. Those Jews with only an outward righteousness will not be resurrected to live in the future kingdom on earth.

Matt 7:21 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.

While this is also true of Christians, salvation and eternity in heaven itself, the immediate context is Jesus’ Jewish audience (of Matthew) and its hope of being resurrected to live in the Messianic kingdom on earth (Dan 7:18; 12:1-3).

Matt 8:11 And I say unto you, That many shall come from the east and west, and shall sit down with Abraham, and Isaac, and Jacob, in the kingdom of heaven.

Jewish eschatology was completely associated with the idea of a kingdom reign of Messiah on earth and not one in heaven. When Jesus promised a home in heaven to His disciples in John 14:1-3 He was addressing the nucleus of something altogether unheard of by the Old Testament saints. He was talking to His mystery body, the Church.

Matt 10:5 These twelve Jesus sent forth, and commanded them, saying, Go not into the way of the Gentiles, and into any city of the Samaritans enter ye not:

Matt 10:6 But go rather to the lost sheep of the house of Israel.

Matt 10:7 And as ye go, preach, saying, The kingdom of heaven is at hand.

See comments at Matthew 3:1,2. The “kingdom of heaven” was primarily a Jewish promise of an earthly kingdom under God’s direct rule.

Matt 11:11 Verily I say unto you, Among them that are born of women there hath not risen a greater than John the Baptist: notwithstanding he that is least in the kingdom of heaven is greater than he.

Matt 11:12 And from the days of John the Baptist until now the kingdom of heaven suffereth violence, and the violent take it by force.

Ever since John had announced “the kingdom of God is at hand” he had been severely rejected and the teaching that God was ready to establish His kingdom-rule on earth at that time had been rejected. Jesus was not describing heaven above.

Matt 13:11 Because it is given unto you to know the mysteries of the kingdom of heaven, but to them it is not given.

In the parable of the sower (Mt 13:1-23) Jesus described how the righteous rule of God will take from unbelievers and reward true believers. This will not happen until the direct kingdom-rule is established on earth.

Matt 13:24, 36-43 Another parable put he forth unto them, saying, The kingdom of heaven is likened unto a man which sowed good seed in his field.

In the parable of the tares (Mt 13:24-30) the wicked live alongside the righteous during the kingdom reign on earth. Whereas here the wicked will be gathered first, in the parable of the net, all are gathered at the same time (Matt 13:48).

Matt 13:31 Another parable put he forth unto them, saying, The kingdom of heaven is like to a grain of mustard seed, which a man took, and sowed in his field:

Mt 13:32 Which indeed is the least of all seeds: but when it is grown, it is the greatest among herbs, and becometh a tree, so that the birds of the air come and lodge in the branches thereof.

In the parable of the mustard seed (Mt 13:31-32) Israel, one of the smallest of nations, will rule the entire earth.

Matt 13:33 Another parable spake he unto them; The kingdom of heaven is like unto leaven, which a woman took, and hid in three measures of meal, till the whole was leavened.

Since leaven (sin) affects both the mystery form of the present kingdom and also the future kingdom on earth, this parable is also a parable of the kingdom of God. These are not descriptions of heaven above which has no sin (leaven). This must apply to a kingdom on earth.

Matt 13:44 Again, the kingdom of heaven is like unto treasure hid in a field; the which when a man hath found, he hideth, and for joy thereof goeth and selleth all that he hath, and buyeth that field.

The parable of the hidden treasure (Mt 13:44) is a description of the righteous rule of God during His kingdom reign on earth. Men are digging in the ground.

Matt 13:45 Again, the kingdom of heaven is like unto a merchant man, seeking goodly pearls.

Matt 13:46 Who, when he had found one pearl of great price, went and sold all that he had, and bought it.

The parable of the pearl of great price can only fit a literal kingdom on earth where God rules. It is not a description of heaven itself.

Matt 13:47 Again, the kingdom of heaven is like unto a net, that was cast into the sea, and gathered of every kind:

Matt 13:48 Which, when it was full, they drew to shore, and sat down, and gathered the good into vessels, but cast the bad away.

Matt 13:49 So shall it be at the end of the world (eon: age): the angels shall come forth, and sever the wicked from among the just

Matt 13:50 And shall cast them into the furnace of fire: there shall be wailing and gnashing of teeth.

The parable of the net (Mt 13:47-50) parallels Matthew 24:29-31, 37-41). Parables are not always to be interpreted literally. Unlike Matthew 13:30 which is interpreted by Jesus, here both good and bad are gathered at the same time. According to Revelation 19-20 the Second Coming of Christ in glory will be followed by the Millennial reign of Christ on earth.

Matt 13:52 Therefore every scribe which is instructed unto the kingdom of heaven is like unto a man that is an householder, which bringeth forth out of his treasure things new and old.

The parable of the householder is yet another parable which will occur in the future on earth as the scribes accept new teachings.

Matt 16:19 And I will give unto thee the keys of the kingdom of heaven: and whatsoever thou shalt bind on earth shall be bound in heaven: and whatsoever thou shalt loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven. (Compare 18:18.)

The Greek tense of the verbs is Future-Perfect (“shall be – having been bound/loosed” already). God’s people who are living under God’s kingdom rule on earth declare what God has done already in heaven.

Matt 18:1 At the same time came the disciples unto Jesus, saying, Who is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven?

Matt 18:2 And Jesus called a little child unto him, and set him in the midst of them,

Matt 18:3 And said, Verily I say unto you, Except ye be converted, and become as little children, ye shall not enter into the kingdom of heaven.

Matt 18:4 Whosoever therefore shall humble himself as this little child, the same is greatest in the kingdom of heaven.

Matt 18:5 And whoso shall receive one such little child in my name receiveth me.

One must remember that Matthew’s audience is Jewish and the Jewish concept of afterlife was living in the kingdom of God’s direct rule on earth.

While the parables of the kingdom of heaven often describe sinners within that kingdom, only converted true believers will initially enter that kingdom at the second coming of Christ as seen in Matthew 24:28-31 and Revelation 19.

Matt 18:23 Therefore is the kingdom of heaven likened unto a certain king, which would take account of his servants.

The parable of the unjust servant (Mt 18:23-35) describes how God will deliver righteous punishment during His kingdom reign on earth. This is not a description of events in heaven.

Matt 19:14 But Jesus said, Suffer little children, and forbid them not, to come unto me: for of such is the kingdom of heaven.

During the kingdom reign of God on earth, simple faith like that of small children will be rewarded by salvation.

Matt 19:23 Then said Jesus unto his disciples, Verily I say unto you, That a rich man shall hardly enter into the kingdom of heaven.

This could apply to either the mystery form of the kingdom of God during the Church age or to the events of Revelation. In the last days, a real Christian could not possibly hoard money during the events of the last seals, trumpets and vials.

Matt 20:1 For the kingdom of heaven is like unto a man that is an householder, which went out early in the morning to hire labourers into his vineyard.

The parable of the laborers (Mt 20:1-16) is an example of how God rules according to His own priorities.

Matt 22:2 The kingdom of heaven is like unto a certain king, which made a marriage for his son,

Matt 22:3 And sent forth his servants to call them that were bidden to the wedding: and they would not come.

The parable of the wedding feast (Mt 22:2-14) points out that most Hebrews will not enter into the Millennial kingdom reign and will be replaced by others. Compare the 144,000 with the great multitude of Revelation 7 and 14.

Matt 23:13 woes

Matt 25:1 Then shall the kingdom of heaven be likened unto ten virgins, which took their lamps, and went forth to meet the bridegroom.

The parable of the virgins (Mt 25:1-13), in context, is more about constant readiness under God’s direct rule than it is about the second coming of Christ. During the kingdom reign on earth, failure to always be ready brings fast and dreadful consequences.

Matt 25:14 For the kingdom of heaven is as a man travelling into a far country, who called his own servants, and delivered unto them his goods.

Matt 25:15 And unto one he gave five talents, to another two, and to another one; to every man according to his several ability; and straightway took his journey.

The parable of the talents (Mt 25:14-30) teaches than those under the direct rule of God should use our gifts and talents wisely during the kingdom reign on earth.

Monday, August 16, 2010


Friends of Russell Kelly

I certify that these comments have been motivated by a real email I received in mid August 2010. Personal details have been removed to protect many involved.
There are many in our churches who have already gone and are going bankrupt because of the tithing frenzy and are afraid to admit it. They have taken out loans “in faith” and have lost tens of thousands of dollars. This frenzy has even resulted in marriages breaking up and children losing parents.

Some have been encouraged to give a second and third tithe with the assurance that God will honor the sacrifice with monetary gains. Personally, I do not know who is the most to blame – greedy selfish preachers or greedy selfish givers. The con works both directions and the giver often receives the rewards he/she deserves by not searching God’s Word for the truth about tithing and spiritual giving.

The gospel of salvation as a free gift through faith in Jesus Christ is being replaced by a false gospel of prosperity which is motivated by greed. Thousands are leaving Christianity discouraged and deceived.

The prosperity false-gospel of tithing is quickly turning good soul-winning denominations such as the Assembly of God, Baptists, Church of God and Pentecostalism into poor examples of genuine Christianity. Just this week I have heard the cries of help from southern Chile in South America, to Nigeria and Kenya in Africa, to India, to Australia and New Zealand. This kind of mockery of the gospel will eventually sour people against Christianity and turn them towards Mohammedism. Is that what we want?

“I know many people who have left church because they saw God as impossible to attain. I did too once.”

When you give all you can give and hit the bottom financially, many of these churches will expel you because of little faith. Yet, while tithing is only mentioned once after Calvary, it is mentioned almost weekly in more and more churches as one of the most important doctrines of the faith. Friends, this is not so in church history.

“And whipped up by the excitement of the phenomena; and using a few examples of people that were already wealthy (rain falls on the good and the bad); several of my closest friends went into incredible debt and still are because of the inability to attain during that time of great world wide financial crisis and took out large loans “in faith” to receive a greater blessing. I know quite a few people who did just that, and it’s like gambling to them.”

I am still waiting for the masses ---the great majority of so-called prosperity tithers who have not been blessed--- to speak up and condemn this false doctrine. Common sense says that some will prosper. That is true even among atheists, Muslims, Hindus and Buddhists. It is wrong to showcase the few who do prosper (usually because of hard work and good business sense) as examples of the norm of prosperity tithers.

Phil 3:8 Yea doubtless, and I count all things but loss for the excellency of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord: for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and do count them but dung , that I may win Christ.

1 Tim 6:8-9 And having food and raiment let us be therewith content. But they that will be rich fall into temptation and a snare, and into many foolish and hurtful lusts, which drown men in destruction and perdition.

Gal 1:8-9 But though we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel unto you than that which we have preached unto you, let him be accursed. As we said before, so say I now again, If any man preach any other gospel unto you than that ye have received, let him be accursed.

Friday, August 13, 2010



Ezekiel wrote from Babylon during and after the last sieges of Jerusalem which ended in 586 B. C. He was aware of remnants of northern Israel which had been taken captive in 722 B. C. and addressed his prophecies to the whole house of Israel (2:3; 3:1; 4:3-6; 9:9; 37:16; 39:25). Ezekiel pleaded with the whole house of Israel to return in faith.

Like all the other prophets who wrote to Israel or Judah, God promised to punish sin and desolate the land (5:14; 6:14; 9:9; 15:8).

Also like all the other prophets, God promised to leave a remnant and not fully destroy His people (6:8-9+).

Restoration goes far beyond that seen in 538 B.C. because it includes both houses of Israel and all the land of Israel (11:17).

This is important. Restoration of Israel as a unified nation will clearly be in the context of the New Covenant, the everlasting covenant and a new spirit within believers. Fulfillment of the following nine (9) texts can only be explained in the context of a permanently indwelling Holy Spirit which was not true during the Old Covenant. Compare Jeremiah 31:31-37 and Hebrews 8:8-13.

1. Ezek 11:19 And I will give them one heart, and I will put a new spirit within you; and I will take the stony heart out of their flesh, and will give them an heart of flesh:

2. Ezek 16:60 “Nevertheless I will remember my covenant with thee in the days of thy youth, and I will establish unto thee an everlasting covenant.

3. Ezek 16:62 And I will establish my covenant with thee; and thou shalt know that I am the LORD.
4. Ezek 16:63 I will make a covenant of peace with them; it shall be an everlasting covenant with them: and I will place them, and multiply them, and will set my sanctuary in the midst of them for evermore (37:26).

5. Ezek 20:37 And I will cause you to pass under the rod and I will bring you into the bond of the covenant.

6. Ezek 36:26 A new heart also will I give you and a new spirit will I put within you: and I will take away the stony heart out of your flesh and I will give you an heart of flesh.

7. Ezek 36:27 And I will put my spirit within you, and cause you to walk in my statutes, and ye shall keep my judgments, and do them.

Note: Since the final total restoration of Israel will occur after it is under the New Covenant, the statutes and judgments must also be those of the New Covenant (compare 11:20 with 11:17).

8. Ezek 37:26 Moreover I will make a covenant of peace with them; it shall be an everlasting covenant with them: and I will place them, and multiply them, and will set my sanctuary in the midst of them for evermore.

9. Ezek 39:29 “Neither will I hide my face any more from them: for I have poured out my spirit upon the house of Israel, saith the Lord GOD.”

Note: This is the final word, the last verse, of promise to Israel in Ezekiel.

God MUST restore Israel, not because it has repented, but because He had sworn to do so by His own name, His own character. This is an extremely important principle for understanding Israel’s role in future prophecy. Nine (9) times God’s repeats His reason for eventually totally restoring Israel. The conditional time element will eventually be replaced by an unconditional aspect because of God’s name and vow.

1. Ezek 19:44 And ye shall know that I am the LORD, when I have wrought with you for my name's sake, not according to your wicked ways, nor according to your corrupt doings, O ye house of Israel, saith the Lord GOD.
Ezek 20:9 But I wrought for my name's sake, that it should not be polluted before the heathen …

2. Ezek 20:10 Wherefore I caused them to go forth out of the land of Egypt, and brought them into the wilderness.

Note: Israel did not deserve to be delivered out of Egypt either. God did so because He had promised Abraham, Isaac and Jacob.

3. Ezek 20:14 But I wrought for my name's sake, that it should not be polluted before the heathen, in whose sight I brought them out.

4. Ezek 20:22 Nevertheless I withdrew mine hand [OF PUNISHMENT], and wrought for my name's sake, that it should not be polluted in the sight of the heathen, in whose sight I brought them forth.

5. Ezek 20:44 And ye shall know that I am the LORD, when I have wrought with you for my name's sake, not according to your wicked ways, nor according to your corrupt doings, O ye house of Israel, saith the Lord GOD.

6. Ezek 36:21 But I had pity for mine holy name, which the house of Israel had profaned among the heathen, whither they went.

7. Ezek 36:22 … I do not this for your sakes, O house of Israel, but for mine holy name's sake, which ye have profaned among the heathen, whither ye went.

8. Ezek 36:23 And I will sanctify my great name, which was profaned among the heathen, which ye have profaned in the midst of them; and the heathen shall know that I am the LORD, saith the Lord GOD, when I shall be sanctified in you before their eyes.

9. Ezek 36:32 Not for your sakes do I this, saith the Lord GOD, be it known unto you: be ashamed and confounded for your own ways, O house of Israel.


Major portions of Ezekiel 19, 36 and 37 relate to the land itself. By fulfilling the unconditional promises of the land made to Abraham through David, Israel will eventually be restored to its land even before the invasion of Gog and Magog. This will involve both houses of Israel and it will involve the New Covenant.

1. Ezek 19:38 And I will purge out from among you the rebels, and them that transgress against me: I will bring them forth out of the country where they sojourn, and they shall not enter into the land of Israel: and ye shall know that I am the LORD.

Note: God promised that the “rebels” of Israel shall not enter the land. Since this has not yet occurred, it must be future.

2. Ezek 19:40 For in mine holy mountain, in the mountain of the height of Israel, saith the Lord GOD, there shall all the house of Israel, all of them in the land, serve me: there will I accept them, and there will I require your offerings, and the firstfruits of your oblations, with all your holy things.

Note: Since these things will occur under the New Covenant context, the “offerings, firstfruits, oblations and holy things” must be interpreted in the context of New Covenant things.

3. Ezek 19:42 And ye shall know that I am the LORD, when I shall bring you into the land of Israel, into the country for the which I lifted up mine hand to give it to your fathers.

4. Ezek 36:24 For I will take you from among the heathen, and gather you out of all countries, and will bring you into your own land.
5. Ezek 36:25 Then will I sprinkle clean water upon you, and ye shall be clean: from all your filthiness, and from all your idols, will I cleanse you.

Note: This is not a description of what happened in 538 B. C. and must be future.

6. Ezek 36:28 And ye shall dwell in the land that I gave to your fathers; and ye shall be my people and I will be your God.

7. Ezek 36:29 I will also save you from all your uncleannesses ….

Note: This is the New Covenant context of Israel’s restoration.

8. Ezek 36:30 And I will multiply the fruit of the tree, and the increase of the field …

9. Ezek 36:33 In the day that I shall have cleansed you from all your iniquities I will also cause you to dwell in the cities, and the wastes shall be builded.

Note: Complete and full restoration in the land is coupled with New Covenant cleanliness.

10. Ezek 36:34 And the desolate land shall be tilled, whereas it lay desolate in the sight of all that passed by.

11. Ezek 36:35 And they shall say, This land that was desolate is become like the garden of Eden; and the waste and desolate and ruined cities are become fenced, and are inhabited.

12. Ezek 36:36 Then the heathen that are left round about you shall know that I the LORD build the ruined places, and plant that that was desolate: I the LORD have spoken it, and I will do it.

Note: The curse of desolation will be reversed.

13. Ezek 36:38 As the holy flock, as the flock of Jerusalem in her solemn feasts; so shall the waste cities be filled with flocks of men: and they shall know that I am the LORD.

14. Ezek 37:12 I will open your graves, and cause you to come up out of your graves, and bring you into the land of Israel.

15. Ezek 37:14 And shall put my spirit in you, and ye shall live, and I shall place you in your own land: then shall ye know that I the LORD have spoken it, and performed it, saith the LORD.

Note: Again the indwelling spirit of the New Covenant is a vital part of the restoration of Israel to its land.

16. Ezek 37:25 And they shall dwell in the land that I have given unto Jacob my servant, wherein your fathers have dwelt; and they shall dwell therein, even they, and their children, and their children's children for ever: and my servant David shall be their prince for ever.

Note: Sixteen (16) texts prior to the Gog-Magog invasion confirm God’s unconditional promise to restore Israel to its land during the Millennial Kingdom Reign on Earth.


After all Israel has been restored to its land and lives at peace in un-walled cities, there will be one final crisis which is very similar to that seen in Revelation 20:7-9. If these events occur at the end of the thousand year reign of Messiah on earth, the absence of modern weapons would be understandable.

1. All Israel will have been restored and will be dwelling safely in its land (Ezek 38:8, 14).

2. Gog and Magog will invade to take spoil (38:11-12). The countries listed appear to include all known nations of Ezekiel’s time. The latter day invasion of Israel at the end of the Millennium would include all nations per Revelation 20:8.

3. Gog and Magog cover the land of Israel (38:16).

4. A great earthquake will occur in Israel (38:19). All mountains and walls will fall (38:20).

5. God will cause Gog and Magog to fight each other (38:21). Insects and hailstones will fall on them (38:22). Only a sixth of them will survive (39:2). The scavengers will eat their dead bodies (39:4. 17, 18, 20).

6. None of God’s people will be harmed during this invasion.

7. It will take seven months to bury the dead (39:12) and seven years to burn the weapons (39:9).

8. The major problem with placing the invasion of Gog and Magog at the end of the millennium is the seven year period of 39:9. It should be noted that the “new heavens and new earth” of Isaiah 65:17 and 66:21 are not totally new. Placing Gog and Magog either before or at the beginning of the tribulation period does not satisfy the “un-walled cities” and “weapons” of wood context.


1. Ezek 39:26 After that they have borne their shame, and all their trespasses whereby they have trespassed against me, when they dwelt safely in their land, and none made them afraid.

2. Ezek 39:27 When I have brought them again from the people, and gathered them out of their enemies' lands, and am sanctified in them in the sight of many nations;

3. Ezek 39:28 Then shall they know that I am the LORD their God, which cause them to be led into captivity among the heathen: but I have gathered them unto their own land, and have left none of them any more there.

4. Ezek 39:29 Neither will I hide my face any more from them: for I have poured out my spirit upon the house of Israel, saith the Lord GOD.

5. Permanent complete and full restoration is coupled with the New Covenant and the indwelling Holy Spirit.


1. Ezek 40:8 “And he said unto me, Son of man, the place of my throne, and the place of the soles of my feet, where I will dwell in the midst of the children of Israel for ever.”

The whole house of Israel is being enticed by God’s desire to dwell among them for ever.

2. Ezek 40:9 “Now let them put away their whoredom, and the carcases of their kings, far from me, and I will dwell in the midst of them for ever.”

God wants Israel to repent and be revived before He dwell with them. This is the Old Covenant conditions of 538 B. C.

3. Ezek 40:10 “Thou son of man, shew the house to the house of Israel, that they may be ashamed of their iniquities: and let them measure the pattern.”

God tells Ezekiel to describe the general pattern of the new Temple in order to entice them to full faith and repentance.

4. Ezek 40:11 “And if they be ashamed of all that they have done, shew them the form of the house, and the fashion thereof, and the goings out thereof, and the comings in thereof, and all the forms thereof, and all the ordinances thereof, and all the forms thereof, and all the laws thereof: and write it in their sight, that they may keep the whole form thereof, and all the ordinances thereof, and do them.”

God tells Ezekiel not to give Israel the details of the new Temple unless they express sincere repentance. Northern Israel did not return in 538 B. C. Neither northern Israel nor southern Judah has ever returned in full faith. This conditional prophecy failed and does not apply to the future.


God is still able to fulfill His unconditional prophecy. Through Ezekiel He said that Egypt will never again be a leader among the nations (Ezek 29:15) and that Edom will no longer be a nation (35:9). The Ammonites will cease to be a nation (Ezek 25:10).

Monday, August 02, 2010


such still does not validate tithing of money to gospel workers because ---

1. The Law defines tithes as only food from inside God’s holy land of Israel which He had miraculously increased (Lev 27:30-34).
2. The Law does not accept tithes from what man increased or from outside Israel (Lev 27:30-34).
3. The Law commands that the first whole Levitical tithe be given to the Levites servants of the priests (Num 18:21-24).
4. The Law commands the Levites to give one tenth of the tithe they receive to the priests (Num 18:25-28).
5. The Law requires OT priests to kill anybody attempting to enter the sanctuary (Num 18:7, 22).
6. The Law requires those who receive Levitical tithes to forfeit property ownership and inheritance (Num 18:20, 23).
7. The Law requires a second tithe (20% total) to be eaten in the streets of Jerusalem during the 3 annual feasts (Deu 14:22-26).
8. The Law requires a third tithe every third year to be kept in the homes for the poor (total 23%) (Deu 14:28-29).
9. The Law would not permit Gentiles to tithe either to Jesus or to the Temple system (Deu 7:2).
10. The Law’s application did not allow money with images to enter the Temple –thus the money-changers (Mt 22:20-21).

THEREFORE appealing to the Law to justify tithing among New Covenant Gentile Christians still does not justify a changed definition and application of tithing.



When Jesus was asked if the Hebrew law allowed for tribute to Rome (Mt 22:17-18), He answered “Show me the tribute money. Whose image and superscription is on it?” (Mt 22:19-20).

The answer was “It is Caesar’s image and superscription.” Jesus then said “Render therefore unto Caesar the things which are Caesar's and unto God the things that are God's” (Mt 22:21).

What was Jesus talking about?

The answer relates to the nature of the Temple shekel and the money changers. Every Hebrew man, woman and child was required by the Old Covenant Law to pay an annual poll tax, or head tax, which was used to maintain the Temple and pay for sacrifices for the nation (Ex 30:13).

It is extremely important to realize that the Temple shekel was NOT from money which had an image on it! Such was forbidden inside God’s holy temple. Roman currency was not allowed because it had the image of Caesar on it along with a Roman superscription in a pagan language.

This must also apply to our own currency. It has images of our presidents, images of buildings, images of animals and images of our nature. Shocking as it is, our money does not qualify to be used as gifts to God or the OT Temple!

The money-changers were “bankers” and probably “Levites”. Their tables were set up in the court of the Gentiles and not inside the Temple itself because the money brought to them could not enter the Temple. The money-changers exchanged legitimate Roman currency for lawful “Temple money” which did not contain images or foreign writing. This is common in many eastern religions even today. The money-changers charged an exchange rate which resulted in the worshippers receiving less “Temple money” than their real money was worth.

Jesus was angry. Even though this occurred in the Court of the Gentiles which was outside the proper Temple grounds, it was still too near the Temple. Jesus wanted a buffer zone between defiled pagan money with images on it and the HOLY Temple grounds.

Although the texts say that Jesus was inside the “temple of God,” they must be understood as a reference to the Court of Gentiles beside the Temple itself (Mt 21:12; Mk 11:15).

The Jewish people were extremely critical about image-bearing pagan currency (shields, ensigns or anything else). A study of Jewish history will reveal several revolts over this issue.

WHAT DOES THIS HAVE TO DO WITH TITHING? Have you looked at your money lately? It bears pagan images and would have never been accepted at tithes under the Law. Those who teach we are to obey the tithing commands of the Law are inadvertently saying that our money cannot be used for tithes. Wow!

Sunday, August 01, 2010


By Russell Earl Kelly
August 1, 2010

I just returned from a whirlwind trip to Chicago which began with a 17 bus ride from Marietta, Georgia to Chicago followed by a 12 hour stay in Chicago followed by another 17 hour bus ride back home. All I can say is that reporters can really learn a lot about lower and lower-middle class in the U. S. A. by such a trip.


Three weeks before my trip, I bought a ticket via telephone. The ticket agent spoke good English but he was very slow and did not know his job well. In the process of repeating things over and over, the date of my departure and return was changed and even I got confused. When I caught the error I was told that the only way to correct it was in person at the bus station. The only other choice was to speak with customer service.


I called on a Monday and was placed on hold never to be answered in 30 minutes. I called again on Tuesday and was again placed on the same hold with no answer. The recording suggested I call between 2 and 5 PM for best service. I called Wednesday at 3 PM and the call was placed on hold for eternity.


Two weeks before the trip I went to the bus station to change my ticket. Although the address of the station was that of a U. S. highway, it was impossible to get to the station from off the highway. We had to call the station for directions. Having arrived at the station, I was told that a change of ticket could only be made with cash –the only kind of payment in the system which was cash only. With no ATMs around I left.


The second trip to the station was with $15.00 cash to correct the ticket. No receipt. I am guessing that this $15.00 is kept by the station attendant as part of the system plan.


The station attendant in Marietta was the most pleasant Greyhound employee I met. She immediately learned my name and the others awaiting a bus.

I learned that Greyhound made no reservations. This means that my trip could be changed any time a bus arrived which was already full. Not a pleasant thought since I later met many at other stations who had experienced that delay.

I mentioned that I dressed up and performed as an Elvis impersonator often. That led to an impromptu singing of two partial Elvis songs, Heartbreak Hotel and Blue Suede Shoes in the small station. It was fun.

After mentioning that I had written 3 books on Bible subjects, a 40-ish gentleman asked me for some texts. He opened his hand luggage and pulled out a Bible. He began looking for Timothy over and over in the FRONT of his Bible and became frustrated that he could not find Timothy.

The Bible belt has disappeared. This is a man who faithfully attends church regularly. If this is the kind of Bible knowledge we find from regular church-attendees, what horrible kind of manipulation is being done in the name of God among the even-more biblically ignorant?

5. MARIETTA, GA; 7:30 PM, Wed

It has been many years since I rode Greyhound. The first thing that I noticed was the plastic bullet proof cage around the driver. They must really feel like being in a cage with no room to stretch out. The driver had less space than the passengers. No wonder most of them where grouchy and rude.

As I began looking for a seat, the first person I noticed was a seat-hog. The man evidently did not want anybody sitting beside him as he had his carry-on luggage on the seat with his arm draped over it. I proceeded to find a seat without such nonsense and noticed that he was forced to move over as the bus filled up. He lost the opportunity to chose his own seat-mate.

The standard (paraphrased) driver‘s announcement given at each station departure: Good afternoon, my name is (name). There will be no alcoholic beverages, drugs, cursing, loud talking or other misbehavior on this coach. If you are guilty you will be removed from the bus by a state trooper. Place your cell phones on vibrate only. Use headphones. Do not come to the front of the bus for any reason. Do not sit in the seat behind me. Sit back and enjoy your ride.

The following portions of the announcement were totally ignored by many on the bus: cells phones rang loudly throughout the trip, conversations were loud and full of profanity and one driver instructed passengers come to the front of the bus rather than yell to him.


Nashville was a long layover to clean the bus. It was a brand new terminal (the only new one seen) and was full of passengers. The new men’s room only had two toilet seats for all those people.


In contrast to Nashville, the next terminal had an entire long wall full of toilets for men and the terminal was not a busy one.

While miles from nowhere there came a shout from the back of the bus that a man could not breathe. The driver yelled “What do you need?” The answer was “A gd mf doctor. What do you think?” The driver pulled the bus off the highway and looked at the man. He then drove to the next exit and checked again. Evidently the “unable to breathe” man decided that he would rather continue to his destination than be removed by an ambulance. Nothing else happened and we never knew what really was wrong.


This very old terminal was also the Amtrak station and was underneath the train tracks. The building shook much of the time from passing freight trains overhead. It has 2 toilets for men.

Something went wrong with our bus and we were asked to re-board another adjacent bus. However not all the luggage was transferred from one bus to the other and many passengers panicked at later stations. This is impossible to explain since one can see through the bottom of the bus when all its doors are open to load and unload luggage. Having been aware of this problem from 20 years ago. I did not have any checked luggage.

CHICAGO, IL; 1130 AM, Thursday

Arrived exhausted 17 hours later and was picked up soon.


CHICAGO, IL; 330 AM, Friday

I was dropped off around 1230 AM. About an hour later security came asking for tickets and making everybody without a ticket leave. They were rude. The officer walked up to me and said “You can show me your ticket anytime you want to.” I said “How about now and showed it to him.

There was a young girl (15?) sleeping in the middle of a crowd on a sleeping bag. She had no ticket. The officer said that she had been in the terminal for 3 days already and must leave. She left the station alone around 2:30 A.M. into the dark dangerous Chicago night. One would think that they would have at least tried to find her a homeless shelter for the night.

As the line of passengers grew to the capacity of the bus, I feared that it would fill up and I would miss the bus. The bus originated in Chicago and left full.

The bus was brand new. It had electrical outlets at every seat which made sure that everybody’s cell phone stayed charged and their music players did not stop. It has hooks for baby seats which protruded into a sitting person’s buttocks and prevented sitting all the way back in the seat.

And the bus had a wheel-chair life which the others did not have. Problem: the drivers did not know how to work it and somebody from the station usually showed them how. The wheel chair meant that 7 passenger seats were temporarily pushed together and unavailable.


Breakfast time: No hot breakfast food. Only cold hot dogs and pizza available. I bought two hot dogs and ate one. Yuck. The wheelchair person stayed on the bus.


To its credit, since the wheelchair person was going to Chattanooga, Greyhound changed from its normal plans from an older bus to keep the new bus going a different direction than originally planned. Therefore I did not switch busses in Cincinnati as scheduled. Only after leaving Cincinnati and knowing that I would not have to fear being bumped by an incoming full bus did I call home.

The return trip from Chicago to Indianapolis, to Cincinnati to Knoxville was horrendous. (1) Every time the wheelchair person had to use the bathroom there was a hassle. (2) A seemingly mentally deranged person sat opposite me and talked non-stop to a woman from Senegal who spoke very little English. (3) A man behind me was verbally abusive of his wife and the mental person told him to smother her with a pillow and push her down the stairs. (4) The mental person talked very loudly and was extremely obnoxious while describing unbelievable violence and death to somebody over the phone for hours. (5) Another man sitting farther back talked loudly non-stop for hours. (6) The abusive husband and his wife eventually got off and were replaced by a single woman with a crying baby.

There was a man on the bus who had been on vacation with a friend to go fishing in Canada. The Canadian border guard would not allow him in because of a DUI several years ago. He said that a DUI was a felony in Canada. His buddy went to Canada to fish and he returned home.

My seat mate was a small-frame 19 year old boy returning from Army duty in Afghanistan. He had been a demolition expert and had seen more than his share of death and violence for a 19 year old. He wanted to go back to Afghanistan but the Army would not let him. He said that he had never did have any real parents and his only friend here in Knoxville was his older brother. He lay against my shoulder and slept for several hours. When he awoke, I let him use my small pillow and he slept several more hours. I gave him my name and address and told him to call me if he wanted a father figure to speak with and go camping or something.


4:30 PM. Burger King. My first hot meal since the night before. It was great and I was starving. With no station attendant, the wheelchair person stayed on the bus.


Wheelchair ramp problems and delay.

The driver had a strong southern accent and was the friendliest driver of the trip. His departing speech differed in that he told us not to shout to him but to come up front and speak. He also allowed an overload and persons to sit in the seat behind the driver. After being told about 8 times by other drivers not to come up front, a passenger yelled that it was too hot. He yelled back “I don’t take long distance calls; come up front to speak to me.”


We arrived 20 minutes late and left another 30 minutes late because of the wheelchair ramp. Between the bus driver and station attendant, nobody knew how to use it.


We arrived 35 minutes late. The station had closed and had no attendant who knew how to operate the wheelchair ramp. The driver tried to de-bark the wheelchair first and this delayed other passengers another 10 minutes before he changed his mind. As I was getting off the bus, the wheelchair victim was lying on his back in his wheelchair on the bus and nobody could unhook the chair from the bus.


1. Almost no sleep.
2. Clean bathroom smell was overpowering.
3. Dirty bathroom smell was even more overpowering.
4. Loud cell phones ringing.
5. Loud conversations. Non-stop talkers
6. A crazy man’s threatening on the phone.
7. An abusive husband’s talk
8. Angry cell-phone conversations all over the bus. A brother cussing another brother who thought that his own sister was lusting after him.
9. Crying baby
10. Conversations in 3-4 languages
11. Fear of missing connections because of full incoming buses.
12. Schedule confusion because of time zone changes back and forth.
13. Screaming for doctor because a man couldn’t breathe
14. Uncomfortable seats; baby seat hooks
15. Uncomfortable seats causing severe groin pain
16. Mostly rude drivers


1. The Greyhound dog logo shows the dog running like a rabbit with both front feet and both back feet extended at the same time. This is not how dogs run.
2. Watching people on the back seat is funny. They bounce like on a trampoline.
3. I wish I had photos of the many different attempts to contort bodies for sleep. Most likely all of us were sore somewhere when we got off.
4. There are still Trailways buses up north that go east and west. I think they are called Burlington Trailways.
5. I slept 14 hours the first night back, 3 hours during the day and 8 more the next night. During my sleep I removed my pillow-case and placed it over my feet. Strange indeed. What does that mean? I hope it does not mean that I am going to take another long bus ride soon.

Reply to CHURCH AT THE GATEWAY, Staten Island, NYC


The Monkey on My Back
Rev Doctor Daniel Mercado
July 31, 2010

Reply by Russell Earl Kelly, PHD

MERCADO: In Phil. 4:10-19, Paul knocks the monkey off our backs …

KELLY: This is dishonest, if the monkey on your back is tithing, Phil 4:10 is not discussing tithing. He is discussing freewill, generous, sacrificial and joyful giving. Tithes could not come from pagan land or have pagan images on it.

MERCADO: The first key to generous giving is CARING. In verse 10, “But I rejoiced in the Lord greatly, that now at last you have revived your concern for me; indeed, you were concerned before, but you lacked opportunity.”

KELLY: Generous freewill giving –YES. Tithing – NO. You are twisting the Scriptures. True biblical HOLY tithes were always only FOOD from inside God’s HOLY land of Israel which God had miraculously increased. Tithes could not come from what man increased, from Gentiles or from outside Israel. Paul never said that the Philippians nor any other church tithed. Be honest.

MERCADO: The heart of tithing and giving is Godly CONCERN, a CARING:

KELLY: No. This is not in the Bible. Tithes were required from food producers who lived inside Israel whether they cared or not. It was stone cold hard Old Covenant LAW.

MERCADO: -Caring for Christ’s work and the Church in the world.
-Caring for Christ’s worker and those who serve Him.
-Caring for Christ’s commission to spread the Gospel to the lost.

KELLY: No. Tithes were never used in the OT to evangelize the Gentiles. In fact God commanded Israel NOT to share its covenant with the Gentiles.

MERCADO: Tithing is a biblical principle consistently taught in the Bible:

KELLY: The consistent things about biblical tithes from the Law are: (1) its definition of only food from inside Israel, (2) Numbers 18 teaching that the Levites and priests were to KILL anybody attempting to enter the sanctuary, (3) whole Levitical tithes going to the servants of the priests and (4) recipients of Levitical tithes NOT allowed to own property. None of these consistent principles are followed today.

MERCADO: -Abraham tithed before the Law was given – (Genesis 14:20)

KELLY: Abram also returned the 90% to a pagan ruler and the church does not follow that example. According to Gen 14:21 the 90% was controlled by pagan Arab law of the land. Abram tithed pagan spoils of war because he was expected to obey the law of the land.

MERCADO: -Moses taught tithing in the Law – Leviticus (27:26)

KELLY: This defines the HOLY biblical tithes as only food from inside Israel. The tithe was neither the first nor the best –it was the tenth from inside Israel.

MERCADO: -Nehemiah reestablished the tithe after the Babylonian captivity (13)

KELLY: Neh 10:37-38 proves that the whole tithe was to be brought to the Levitical cities and not to the Temple. Neh 13:5-10 proves that the priests had stolen the Levites’ portion of the tithe –the probable context of Mal 3:10.

MERCADO: -Malachi warned that it was robbing God not to give the tithe (3:6-12)

KELLY: Tithing in Malachi is in the context of the blessings and curses of the whole law –all 600+ commands. The priests were cursed for stealing in 1:6-14; 2:1 and were chastised in 3:1-10.

MERCADO: -Jesus supported tithing as something that “should be done.” (Matt. 23:23)

KELLY: Of course He did –because the Law was still in effect before Calvary. He could not teach either His Jewish or Gentile disciples to tithe to him because both were illegal. The key phrase is “matters of the law.”

MERCADO: -Paul reminded the Hebrews Christians about tithing to our great High Priest, Jesus Christ. (7:8)

KELLY: 7:8 merely reminds readers that the Temple system was still in operation at that time. 7:12 says that it is necessary to change the law and 7:18 says that the change was the “abolishment, or disannulling, of the commandment (of tithing) going before” from 7:5. That is the context.

MERCADO: For 45 years I have consistently taught Scriptural tithing and relied on the obedient response of our people to support Gateway’s ministry at home and abroad.

KELLY: You have taught error. OT tithes were never used for missionary work to convert OT Gentiles. Tithing did not become enforceable Law until AD 777 per the Encyclopedia Britannica.

MERCADO: And we have taught tithing as the beginning of our giving in addition to offerings …

KELLY: This is wrong also. The only persons in the Old Covenant who were required to begin their level of giving were food producers who lived inside Israel. Tithing was not a principle for anybody else and tithes could not come from defiled pagan dust outside Israel.

MERCADO: I say all this to remind our congregation, and those of you reading this article, that the work of God depends on the faithfulness of His people. We will someday return to him with our “talents” (Matthew 25) and give an account.

KELLY: This is true but it does not justify teaching the false doctrine of New Covenant tithing instead of better New Covenant giving principles.

MERCADO: -God is asking us to tithe, yes 10% of our income to our church each week as He supplies.

KELLY: No texts.

MERCADO: [From the Church’s statement on What We Believe]
All He asks is that we believe, we have faith, and we wait patiently doing His good work and living a godly life until Jesus Christ, who rose on the third day so many years ago, will one day return in all His power and glory.

KELLY: PLUS TITHING. You teach that salvation is by grace through faith plus tithing.

The monkey is still on you back because you cannot and will not defend your position on tithing using common sense principles of interpretation. You have changed the definition and purposes of tithing to fit your own purposes without God’s approval.

Russell Earl Kelly, PHD