Grace Bible Church
The Tree of Life
A Weekly Review
Week ending 112810
The Doctrine of The Open Door. Part 12.
Since we noted the subject of biblical numerology in this doctrine of the Open Door, I thought it would be fitting for us to look at a so-called coincidence in our study of the doctrine of the open door. This is the 37th message on the doctrine of the Open Door and it is fascinating to see what the Bible had to say about numerology. Remember that the chapters and verses in the Bible are not really divinely inspired and officially recognized as the Holy Scripture, God always speaks to us through the Bible as His spoken Word, which is called logos.
God loves to be personal with us and He speaks to us in a very special way through the logos, the Word of God, a word of encouragement sometimes referred to as a rhema.
Rhema is just simply God's way of speaking to us in a personal way as He fulfills HEB 11:6c, that He is a rewarder of those who seek Him. Just as we will see today, that God also speaks to us in a humorous way.....there’s a time to laugh.
One of the reasons why the Bible is filled with God’s humor is because humor brings God closer to mankind. God seems more understandable and less unapproachable and different from us when He shows us his humor. Many times, through His actions, He reveals this to us. In fact, the first time laughter is mentioned is found in GEN 17:15-17, where God dealt with Abraham and Sarah in a humorous way. Their son would be called Yitschaaq meaning laughter because they laughed at God.
Now we never build our doctrine on the basis of a rhema, a personal word from God, our doctrinal viewpoint is based upon the logos, the written word inspired by God the Holy Spirit. I say all of that because I find it very interesting that being our 37th lesson on the doctrine of the Open Door that the number 37 has a very interesting significance in the Bible.
Under the doctrine of Numerology the number 37 speaks of perfection, sanctification, and salvation, or being saved. God speaks to us in a very personal way through His Open Doors in His perfect Divine Timing. He has done so by means of the word of God, and what some call a coincidence, which I believe are really personal rhemas or words of encouragement from God.
So, the Number 37, made up of a 3 and a 7, has some startling so-called coincidences such as the 3700th verse of the Bible finds the Lord selecting the Levites to be the tribe of Priests who are to be holy and set apart for serving God.
We can only serve God by means of going through the open doors that He provides. In the book of Numbers this principle is found in the 3rd chapter and 7th verse (37).
And they shall keep his charge, and the charge of the whole congregation before the tent of meeting, to do the service of the tabernacle. (NUM 3:7)
This is just one of the Bible’s many examples showing how number 37 is related to being saved, raised up, or being holy or perfect. This example is also given by the fact that there are only seven books in the Bible that have a chapter 37 and all seven chapters speak of being saved, raised up, or being holy or perfect.
I just find it to be interesting that there happens to be only seven chapters in the Bible called thirty-seven and all point to the principle of being saved, raised up, or being holy or perfect. Consider Gen 37 - Joseph is thrown into a pit but in GEN 37:36, he is lifted out of it and is delivered (saved).
In Exo 37 - There is the perfection of furniture in the tabernacle which represents - things of Pure Gold or being holy or perfect.
In Job 37 - in the 13,777th verse in the Bible, JOB 37:7 says He seals the hand of every man because He is holy and perfect. InJOB 37:7 -- The Lord will save his people - Psalm 37:37 says “Mark the blameless man” (saved).
LUK 1:37, “For nothing will be impossible with God.”
Don’t be surprised when you see that God has done the impossible. Like God, His numbers and the Bible’s perfection are beyond our comprehension. We have now come to the last principle in our doctrine of the open door.
Point 11. The Importance of Divine Timing Pertaining to the Open Doors from God.
Ecc 3 teaches that everything in life is a matter of divine timing and God's open doors.
There is an appointed time for everything. And there is a time for every event under heaven—(ECC 3:1)
When it comes to the Open Doors that God provides, some of these doors depend totally upon the sovereign will of God in spite of the free will of man. Most of them depend upon the sovereign will of God working together with the free will of man. For example, pertaining to the sovereign will of God in ECC 3:2, we read there’s A time to give birth.
Divine timing is perfect and God is perfect, therefore, you were born at the perfect time according to divine timing and then sent through the open door of life. Regardless of the circumstances and events that surround your birth, God gave you life at that moment, so that was the right time for you to be born. You did not choose your parents; God did! You did not choose your birthday; God did! Your volition wasn’t involved at all!
Notice pertaining to the sovereign will of God in ECC 3:2, there’s a time to die. God’s timing is perfect and you will die when God determines under divine timing and sent through the open door of eternity. Because of the infinite and eternal wisdom of God, He cannot be wrong in determining the time, manner, or place of our death. There are at least two times in life you will go to and through the open doors provided by God under His perfect divine timing, - the day of your birth, and the day of your death.
God’s timing is perfect and you will die when God determines to send you to the open door of eternity in His time. You have no choice as to whether or not you remain alive forever, because you will. Your choice lies in where you will spend eternity for the issue will be MAT 22:42 “What do you think about the Christ”?
If you refuse to believe in Christ, God has an open door that you will be forced to go through where you will be separated from Him forever as you go into the open door of the fire of Torments, when you die (LUK 16:23-25).
On the other hand, if you believe in Christ, the moment your soul departs from your body you will be “absent from the body, face to face with the Lord” forever; (2CO 5:8). The point is that what you do with the human life which God permanently imputed to your soul is strictly up to you. As well as the question of where you spend eternity. That depends upon your attitude toward the open door provided by God.
Solomon writes in ECC 3:2, there’s A time to give birth, and a time to die; [next he says there’s] a time to plant,
The Hebrew word for plant is nata which means to plant, to work, to invest. God has allotted or assigned to you a profession, a business, a job, and this also includes the time for parenthood. There’s a time to begin and a time to end or rest from that responsibility. A time to start and a time to quit. A time to engage in your job and a time to retire from it. That includes even in your thoughts.
ECC 3:2...a time to uproot what is planted.
Planting and plowing describe an agricultural economy at the time that Solomon wrote this. In our day we would say “there is a right time to invest and there is a right time to reap from that investment.” There is always a right time in business, in the stock market, to buy property, to get into your own business, etc. or a time to be an employee.
In effect, ECC 3:2 says that whatever you do in life by way of making a living, there's a right time and a wrong time. If you discover divine timing, them God will provide the open doors to go through.
ECC 3:2, A time to uproot what is planted.
Uproot is the Hebrew verb aqar which means to root up; to destroy, to exterminate. Before you can replant after your crop grows you must destroy the old to make room for the new.
In verse 3, Solomon says, there’s A time to kill,
Divine timing provides for us the open doors concerning when it’s time to harag, to kill the enemy in battle or to execute the criminal.
In ECC 3:3, a time to heal;
The verb for to heal is rapha which means to heal; to bind up wounds, to restore life; to save life; to mend or repair, or to reconcile. Divine timing reveals the open doors concerning the time to restore relationships and to heal and reconcile us to others.
ECC 3:3, a time to tear down,
A time to tear down is the Hebrew verb paratz which means to demolish or to break away. There’s a time when we must have things in our life completely removed, and God provides for us the open doors to separate. There’s a time when we need to break away from others.
ECC 3:3, And then there's a time to build up.
The Hebrew word banah is used for construction of something wonderful, something great, it can also mean to repair something. It could refer to a friendship, a relationship, and a family matter etc.
In ECC 3:4, A time to weep, and the time for laughter, a time to mourn, and a time to dance.
In other words, God has allotted a certain amount of time in your life for laughing and dancing and weeping and mourning. Pastors especially need to understand this. Many pastors spend all of their time trying to set people straight rather than just teaching the word of God and letting God do it!
In ECC 3:5, A time to throw stones, and a time to gather stones;
You must remember that stones were used as weapons in the ancient world. Throwing stones can mean a lot of things such as to fight for your country or if in law enforcement, practice capital punishment! However, to throw stones can also mean to pick up stones and to clear the land for construction or building.
To gather is the Hebrew verb kanac which means to collect materials for building; to collect stones for construction, or to clear a field for plowing, or to prepare the military with weaponry. This passage teaches that there are destructive and constructive times in the believer’s life. In other words, God has allotted a certain amount of time for us to be destructive and constructive and has provided the open doors to do so.
ECC 3:5, A time to embrace, and a time to shun embracing.
The phrase a time to embrace is the Qal infinitive construct of the Hebrew verb chabaq which refers to the love affair and sex with your mate. In other words, there’s a time for sex.
Then there’s a time to shun embracing. In other words, there is a right time to be together and there's a wrong time to be together.
In ECC 3:6, there’s another aspect of divine timing and the provisions of the open doors from God. This is going to be a surprise to some of you because you can’t stand the thought of ever losing or giving up anything. Not only that, but there are some people who never think about winning anything.
ECC 3:6 says there’s A time to search,
This means to depend upon the open doors to go to and through concerning the time to seek after, and the time when you should just give up because you must get on with your life.
a time to keep, and a time to throw away.
To keep means to guard, to protect, and a time to throw away to cast away things you thought were important before. What has happened is that your scale of values has changed. God allows us the time to change our foolish values for the Godly ones!
ECC 3:7, A time to tear apart, and a time to sew together;
A time to tear apart refers to the fact that it is inevitable that under certain circumstances as a believer growing in grace. You will have to forget about some friends who are not compatible with your norms and standards any longer and who become a distraction. There is a time to rip apart from these relationships. You may tell someone that you don’t want to see them anymore and they don’t get the message so you finally have to tear them apart with words.
You may even have to hurt the feelings of other people if they force you in a position to tell them the absolute truth! There is a time to do so and a time not to. If you disagree, well read Mat 23 and see if there's a time to rip apart with words! Those of you whom think that love is never saying anything unkind to people, you’re mistaken, that’s not love, that’s hypocrisy! There’s a time to level with someone and tell someone off and to make it clear even if it may sound like you’re ripping them to shreds. Then there’s a time to pick up all the pieces and sew them back up.
ECC 3:7, A time to tear apart, and a time to sew together;
Under the open doors He sets before us that lead us to the open doors of restoring our relationship with others.
In ECC 3:7, there’s a time to be silent, and a time to speak.
A time to keep silent means under the timing of God and the open doors that God provides, He reveals to us when to be still; to hold our peace; to keep silent; or to be quiet. There’s a time to speak, when you can open your mouth and say something that’s wonderful, edifying, helpful, and comforting. Again God's timing is the key.
In ECC 3:8, A time to love, and a time to hate;
“A time to love” means to give our total attention and concentration to the object of our love, a time to hate means to despise that which is anti-God; anti-establishment, or to hate human viewpoint, acts of injustice, prejudice ought to be hated.
A time to hate also refers to hating that which is antagonistic to God's will, plan and purpose, and Bible doctrine. It refers to hating legalism but not the legalists. Hating gossip and maligning but not the person who does so. You should hate hypocrisy, but not the hypocrite. You should hate lying but not the liar. So, there’s a time to love and a time to hate. The problem is most people don't know when to do either.
Then there is a time for war which means under the divine timing of God, He leads us and guides us to and through the open doors of the time to fight, to battle, to stand up for what is right and the time for peace, shalom, meaning the time for rest, peace and prosperity.