Tuesday, February 28, 2006

What About Local Church Associations?

Dr. Couch, our church belongs to the Association Of Churches in our town. They are holding a Day of Prayer, with all the churches, that sounds very liberal. Do you know about this? 
    As a pastor I would never join the local Church Associations! They are downright stupid, and at the most, only accomplish some limited charitable fund raisers. While this may not be bad in itself, I would rather our church do its own charity work and not associate with churches that are liberal, self-serving, ecumenical, feministic, shallow, etc. 

    To show how sick all of this can be, for the event you are talking about, the churches are getting involved in A World Day Of Prayer. The theme is “Uniting Under God’s Tent,” whatever that means! The purpose this year is to call to action the churches to pray “for a fulfilled life for all people” of the world! This is purely socio-economic and has nothing to do with spiritual truth coming from the Word of God! From the Scriptures, what in the world does this mean? 

    It is a bunch of swell. This year’s theme was proposed by the women of Paraguay. The observance will feature a “rustic cross, a symbolic tent, and a large nanduti, which is a handcraft and a woven floral pattern with “single thread, as a symbol of unity within diversity.” 

    This is a false attempt to unit people, blur national and biblical distinctions, and have unity just for the sake of unity! Christ and the Bible have nothing to do with anything! This is pure warmed over liberalism that has come back to life from the 1920s. Churches and pastors who know better should avoid such ecumenical dribble! 

    Thanks for asking.

    Dr.  Mal Couch

Monday, February 27, 2006

What About Faith Being a Gift of God?

Dr. Couch, thank you for some clarification about faith being a gift of God. It seems as if the best of theologians agree, right? 
    That is correct. And especially those who know Greek. 

    What I teach from the Greek text is that faith is merely the instrument by which we are saved, but it is clearly the gift of God. A. A. Hodge writes: “Faith is the gift of God—Eph. 2:8; Phil. 1:29.” Thiessen writes:

From the divine side: The writer of Hebrews speaks of Jesus as being “the author and perfecter of faith” (Heb. 12:2). Clearly, faith is a gift of God (Rom. 12:3; 2 Pet. 1:1), sovereignly given by the Spirit of God (1 Cor. 12:9; cf. Gal. 5:22). Paul speaks of the whole aspect of salvation as being a gift of God (Eph. 2:8), and surely that includes faith.
    The former president of Wheaton College (where I attended and Walvoord also), James Buswell, said in his Systematic Theology: “Saving faith is a Gift of God. In Eph. 2:8 touto is neuter, showing that it is not merely grace, and not merely faith, but the entire concept of grace accepted by faith, which must be regarded as a gift of God.”
    Shedd in his Systematic Theology writes:
Election does not rest upon faith …, any more than upon a foreseen outward work. Faith is a gift of God to man (Eph. 1:8); therefore it cannot first be a gift of man to God, as the ground and reason of his electing act. If election depends upon foreseen faith, God does not first choose man, but man first chooses God, which is contrary to John 15:16. The Bible represents God as the author alone of election, regeneration, faith, and repentance (Rom. 9:16; 8:7; John 1:12-13; 3:5; 6:44, 65).
    Thanks for asking.

    Dr. Mal Couch

Conquest of America?

What do you think of Pat Buchanan’s new book State of Emergency: The Third World Invasion and Conquest of America?
    ANSWER: While I have not read the book (though I plan to), I have read a detailed synopsis of it and have heard him discuss it on a talk show. What I know about the book’s contents causes me to be highly impressed. But more, I know from being a historian that he is right on as to what is happening in both Europe and America. 

   The greatest problem he says (and I agree) is that the West has repudiated its Christian traditions. We are also repudiating our Western culture and civilization. The modern argument is that we should be a nation of inclusiveness and multi-culturalism. This is garbage and the lie from the pit! This really means we should accept all aberrant behavior and that all religions are the same. This argument has come from the halls of academia where communists, atheists, and liberals are really attacking our Christian orientation and heritage. They hate the white male and Calvinistic leaders of the past. They want to do here what happened in France some centuries past: a total and complete secularization of our culture where God completely disappears over the horizon. 

   The bad news is that the enemy is winning! And since I believe in the total sovereignty of God, nothing is happening by accident. We are getting what we deserve. A large percentage of Americans turned their backs on God and true believers in Christ allowed it to happen. The world is setting up for the apostasy, and for the tribulation. We will not turn the tide. Our job now is but to win as many to Christ as we can. We no longer have the power or the wherewithal to turn things around! 

   Thanks for asking,

   Dr. Mal Couch

Friday, February 10, 2006

The German Blitz and Hanukkah

Dr. Couch, I heard you speak about the people of London, England joining in on Hanukkah during the German Blitz of 1940. Could you explain? 
   ANSWER:   As the German bombers came over night after night, the English people were at their lowest spiritual ebb. It was near Christmas time in December which was the same period of remembering Hanukkah, or the Jewish Festival of Lights, celebrating the victory of the Jews over the Greeks in 167 BC. 

    Some Germans were listening to the BBC radio broadcast because of its Christmas celebrations on England’s only radio station that was government operated. The Germans by this time in 1940 had been forced to give up the Nativity celebration and replace any Christmas festivities with a pagan, German Winter Solstice Festival. 

    The Germans who were listening to the forbidden English station, must have gotten an ear full, because the BBC was broadcasting the Hanukkah Festival lead by the Chief Rabbi of the British Empire. The ceremony included readings from the Psalms: “I will praise You,” and a Hanukkah hymn “Rock of Ages, let our song praise Your saving power.” The service was closed by the Cantor and Choir of the Great Synagogue Choir of London. 

    Non-Jews hiding in the subways from the German bombs heard the broadcast. They joined in and sang along with the Maoz Tsur, the official Hanukkah melody. In the shelters children celebrated Hanukkah and held a tea party and played games. The celebrations were greatly enjoyed by all who were present, including the non-Jewish shelterers, who openly expressed the pleasure it gave them to join their Jewish friends in their religious celebration,” the news reported. 

    Since Hanukkah coincided with Christmas the Rabbi sent greetings to all in the underground shelters, and conveyed the compliments of the season. 

    Could it have been that the trials of the war had humbled British Christians to open their hearts to their Jewish neighbors and join together in such religious expressions? This closeness between Jew and Christian was unprecedented in British and Jewish relations. During the Blitz England had a great spiritual revival and a turning back to Christ. 

   Thanks for asking,

   Dr. Mal Couch

Thursday, February 9, 2006

Is Sunday the Sabbath?

Dr. Couch, what do you think of those who hold we should today be under the Sabbath? Also, some of the Reformed folks say Sunday is the Sabbath. This seems all very unbiblical. What do you think? 
   ANSWER: Yes, yes, and yes! You are right on! Your question just throws more light on why the Reformed people are off in so many places, especially with their unbiblical “Covenant theology” position. Only dispensationalism makes it clear how the Bible goes forward, and shows without a doubt we are not under any part of the Law. 

    The New Testament makes it clear that the early church met on the first day of the week (Sunday) and not on the Sabbath (Saturday). Check out Acts 20:7 and 1 Corinthians 16:2. Down through church history this became the norm for all the assemblies. Though it must be pointed out there is no “moral command” in the New Testament to meet on any particular day; this is just what the church did. Clearly, they were moving away from Sabbath meetings that were more Jewish and “synagogue” in nature. 

   Thanks for asking,

   Dr. Mal Couch

Wednesday, February 8, 2006

What Do You Think About Dr. Gary Gilley's Books?

Dr. Couch, have you heard of pastor Dr. Gary Gilley who has written several books: This Little Church Went to Market, This Little Church Stayed Home, and I Just Wanted More Land, which is a critique of Bruce Wilkinson’s book, The Prayer of Jabez
    ANSWER: Yes, I know of Gilley’s two books about how churches are bending to the left, and slowly turning away from the truth. Congregations are going into hot rock music, seeker-friendly atmosphere, etc. While I have not read these two books I am well aware of them through friends who have looked them over thoroughly. 

   He is right on about the fast rising and quick falling Jabez craze.

   Thanks for asking,

   Dr. Mal Couch

Tuesday, February 7, 2006

Olivet Discourse

Dr. Couch, I am currently working on the Olivet Discourse in Luke 21:20-24 where we read of the destruction of Jerusalem. There we find the phrase “The days of vengeance.” Does this have to do with the destruction of Jerusalem and the temple in 70 AD? And, where can I find more information in the subject of “the vengeance”?
   ANSWER:  I suggest three sources: I have a great volume entitled “A Handbook of the Book of Acts” published by Kregel. I have a complete study of the subject in that book. You’ll find it fascinating! Also, I have a full treatment in Dr. Tim LaHaye’s book: The Popular Encyclopedia of Bible Prophecy (Harvest House). Too, in January, my commentary on the book of Luke comes out, published by AMG Publications. All three volumes deal with the subject. 

   You can get the Handbook and the Luke commentary from The Scofield Prophecy Studies bookstore if you wish.

   Thanks for asking,

   Dr. Mal Couch

What About Messianic Assemblies?

Dr. Couch, I noticed that Miles J. Stanford’s website mentioned that he is opposed to Messianic Judaism/Hebrew Christianity. I know he was a dispensationalist, so why would he be opposing Messianic assemblies? 
    ANSWER: Many Messianic assemblies isolate themselves from the complete body of Christ which would of course include Gentiles believers. Some also want to go back to the Law. Some “almost” oppose salvation by grace alone, and place themselves into legalism. Dr. Arnold Fruchtenbaum is also concerned about this and is working hard to help these assemblies be truly dispensational/biblical. Practicing certain Jewish ceremonies and honoring their Jewish tradition is not the problem. But turning such practices into a legalism is a problem. 

   I do not know all of Stanford’s objections, so I am giving you what I think, and more than likely, this is what he also had in mind. Fruchtenbaum remarks that many assemblies are not very biblically astute and are not well theologically trained. Some almost look down at Gentile churches and Gentile Christians. Unfortunately, many Gentile Christians do not absorb well Jews into their church fellowship. And of course this is certainly wrong. And unfortunately for us all, cultural and social differences can divide though this is not supposed to be. 

   Thanks for asking,

   Dr. Mal Couch

Monday, February 6, 2006

Perseverance of the Saints

Dr. Couch, is the last point in Calvinism (the P, Perseverance of the saints) teaching that salvation is by works, or teaching that you need to work to maintain your salvation? 
    ANSWER: No, this is not the case at all. To some but not all Calvinists it can mean that one will not fall into terrible sins and slide backwards into unbelief. But to most, it means eternal security or eternal salvation. Those elect will indeed be brought home to heaven! The Westminster Confession of Faith says on the subject: 

   They whom God has accepted in His Beloved, effectually called and sanctified by His Spirit, can neither totally nor finally fall away from the state of grace: but shall certainly persevere therein to the end, and be eternally saved. 

   Boettner writes: 

   The doctrine of Election and Efficacious Grace logically imply the certain salvation of those who receive these blessings. If God has chose men absolutely and unconditionally to eternal life, and if His Spirit effectively applies to them the benefits of redemption, the inescapable conclusion is that these persons shall be saved. 

   I would be interested to know why you would think that Perseverance implies works on the part of the saved for salvation! 

   Thanks for asking, 
    Dr. Mal Couch

Sunday, February 5, 2006

Does God Love the Non-Elect?

Dr. Couch, does God love the non-elect? I noticed that A. W. Pink argues that He does not love the elect. What do you say? 
    ANSWER:  I always say what the Bible says. Later Calvinists went to extremes and pushed some of their election thinking too far, and certainly beyond what the Bible says.
  1. Total Depravity shows that no man can come to God on his own, by himself. He is dead in trespasses and sins.
  2. God provides redemption for all but the “all” (or none) will by themselves come to Him. “The sacrifice of Christ is sufficient for all but applied only to the elect.” Many Calvinists agree with this statement.
  3. Since none will come of themselves God divinely calls only the elect. He clearly is not “wishing” that any should perish, but He has not willed that ALL come to Him—and that is obvious to anyone who thinks about it!
  4. Election is specific. Only those whom God draws will come to Him!
    Many men like Pink went philosophical and left being biblical. You can’t do that! You have to take a passage at face value. You cannot say “well, it doesn’t mean that!” I’m specifically thinking of the passages that speak of God loving the world. The hard-core Calvinists have to say, “That means the world of the elect. It doesn’t mean what it says!” The passages do not say what they want them to say!
    Here are the verses that I think destroy their view of Limited Atonement, i.e., the view that says the atonement of Christ was ONLY for the elect. Don’t simply follow what the hard-core Calvinists say about Limited Atonement! Look up the passages for yourself:
  • John 3:16
  • 1 Tim. 2:4, 6
  • 2 Pet. 3:9
  • Titus 2:11; 3:4
  • I Tim. 4:10
  • 1 John 2:2
    I have a theological friend everyone reading this answer would know. He began to lean toward Limited Atonement and we were arguing. I said “what do you do with 1 John 2:2?” He went brain dead and finally answered: “Well, yes, I do have a problem with that passage!” I answered back “Dick Tracy, no kidding!” He never brought up the subject again. 

   Thanks for asking,

   Dr. Mal Couch

Friday, February 3, 2006

Huguenots in Church History

Dr. Couch, who were the Huguenots in church history? 
   ANSWER:  The Huguenots were French Protestants and Calvinists who were also the leading middle class of that nation for sometime. The name was adopted from a leading Swiss Calvinist by the name of Hugues. In 1685 the evil king of France revoked the Edict of Nantes that disallowed religious persecution against Protestants. The Huguenots became then fair game for official government and Catholic persecution.

   French soldiers could then pillage and torture them, but mercifully, (supposedly) not kill them. They were scalded with boiling water down their throats, burned on the arms and legs, forced to hold burning charcoal. The women could be raped and made to stand naked in the streets. 

   Some feigned conversation to Catholicism to avoid such torture but most held their ground. They escaped to other countries and many migrated to Canada and America. At one time they numbered up to a million and a half but were cut down in France to be but a few thousand in number. However, before they escaped, at the end, thousands were slaughtered. 

   I believe God keeps good score. I do not believe it was an accident as to how France suffered during their Revolution. They had long ago driven their most spiritual people from the land. Also, the French suffered terribly during both World War I and World War II. 

   I happen to know today several descendants of the Huguenots in Texas. Their families fled France during this terrible period and brought strong Christianity to America! 

   Thanks for asking, 
    Dr. Mal Couch

Thursday, February 2, 2006

Lordship Salvation

I know, Dr. Couch, that you were a friend of S. Lewis Johnson. I am hearing that he may have held to Lordship Salvation. What do you say? 
    ANSWER:  Dr. Johnson was a friend but I also sat under him in graduate school for Greek courses on almost the entire New Testament. Later I was instrumental in having him teach five graduate Greek courses in a seminary setting. I had many conversations with him, and I know that he turned to accept the five points of Calvinism. (In reality only four are defensible from the standpoint of context and the Greek text.) 

   Dr. Johnson was a gracious and godly teacher of God’s Word but he became enamored with a “system” rather than the detailed truths that come off of the pages of Scripture. He knew that I knew my theology pretty well and he did not want to debate over some of these issues. 

   To your question: I never heard anything in his teachings, while in graduate school or in any other setting, which would make one think he held to Lordship. Lordship is an aberrant view that just popped up in the last ten years or so. It cannot be sustained by scriptural proof! Don’t worry about it—it is disappearing! 

   Thanks for asking,

   Dr. Mal Couch

Wednesday, February 1, 2006

Which Study Bible Do You Recommend?

Dr. Couch, I am considering purchasing either the Scofield Reference Bible or a Ryrie Study Bible. Which do you recommend? 
   ANSWER: I have for years used both. You can now get the Scofield in the NAS version. I think this is excellent and use it mostly. Ryrie is good and reliable but a little thin in content in some places. 

   The most important thing is that both are clearly premillennial and dispensational. They sell the most—in the millions of copies! A plain Covenant and Reformed Bible does not sell. This tells me that the layman wants to know the truth and always goes with dispensational writers, though not being sophisticated as to all the issues. The Bible IS premillennial and dispensational! 

   Thanks for asking,

   Dr. Mal Couch

Tuesday, January 31, 2006

Are we under the Law by Works?

Dr. Couch, do Romans 3:31 and Hebrews 10:16 support the Covenant theology idea that believers are under the Law as a rule of life and for sanctification? It seems to me that the NT teaches that believers are not under the Law but under grace. 
    ANSWER:  If we were under Law by works, we would fail, as the Jews failed trying to keep it. Peter reminded the Jews at the Jerusalem Council that they could not keep the Law which was like putting a test upon God “by placing a yoke (upon our necks) which neither our fathers nor we have been able to bear” (Acts 15:10). The point in Romans 3:31 is that God sees my faith, in a sense, fulfilling the Law: “We establish the Law” by our faith. The Greek word “establish” means “to confirm.” Thus by faith God sees me as a Law keeper, though really it was Christ who lived the perfect life and kept it! 

   Romans 3:31 says nothing about placing the church believers back under the Mosaic Law system. 

   In Hebrews 10:16-17, the author is establishing the fact that the New Covenant is now in operation. Jeremiah 31:31-on shows that the New Covenant replaces the Mosaic system. By this New Covenant God sees the believer as having the Law principles established inside, in the heart and in the mind. It no longer is something to keep by external standards. If you go back and look at the prophecy of the New Covenant in Jeremiah 31:31-on, you see that the Mosaic Law has been replaced. We are of course to live out in our lives the moral and spiritual principles that can be seen in the Law, but this is not saying we are now under the Mosaic Law as a way of life or as a system. We are not! 

   The Covenant guys just put all of the Bible into one big mixing bowl and stir it all up. Dispensational guys look carefully at context and see the unfolding plan. 

   Thanks for asking,

   Dr. Mal Couch

Monday, January 30, 2006

Best Dispensational Commentaries on the Book of Romans

Dr. Couch, what do you think of the book Romans Verse By Verse by William Newell? I heard it is one of the best dispensational commentaries on Romans. 
    ANSWER:  It is a great volume on Romans. Newell years ago taught at Moody Bible Institute where I worked and taught at for awhile. He was an outstanding practical dispensational scholar. I also highly recommend from my NT commentary series, of which I act as general editor, Romans by Woodrow Kroll, published by AMG Publishers. Both commentaries would be an excellent addition to your library. 

   Thanks for asking,

   Mal Couch, Ph.D., Th.D.

Sunday, January 29, 2006

Were Spurgeon and Pink into Lordship Salvation?

Dr. Couch, why are so many saying now that “The Greats,” Spurgeon and Pink (both five point Calvinists) believed in Lordship Salvation? Are they reading something into their writings? Were they into Lordship Salvation? 
    ANSWER:  I have a collection of the old Calvinistic writings, including the ones you mentioned in your question. And you could not come up with Lordship Salvation from their writings. The term did not come along until John MacArthur published his book The Gospel According to Jesus. MacArthur admits why he came up with the saying and this teaching. He saw so much carnality in churches that he deduced many must not have claimed Christ as Lord when they made a “profession.” In fact he goes on and writes that one can not be saved unless he claims Christ as Lord! 

   His deduction is wrong! Christians can be carnal, and as Paul says, “walk like mere men.” What MacArthur did (though he would deny this) was to put an additional requirement upon simple and basic salvation faith. Over forty times “belief” is mentioned by itself for salvation in the book of John. What MacArthur was trying to do was screw the nut down tightly in order to “force” Christians to live a sanctified life! 

   I have been accused of not reading his “Gospel According to Jesus” but this is not so. I have over fifty dog-ears on the pages where he is intellectually and biblically misleading the reader. 

   In their doctrine of Perseverance of the Saints, the old Puritans and Calvinists wanted to add to the doctrine of Eternal Security the “near” perfect walk of the saints. For example the old giant Puritan Baptist John Gill writes in his theology volume: 

   "By Perseverance God keeps the believer from sin, not from the indwelling of it in the hearts of believers; nor from all acts of sin in their conduct; but from the dominion, power, and tyranny of it; and from a final and total falling away through it." 
   While there is absolute truth in this statement it could be interpreted that Christians will never sin “bad,” but only slightly bad! What Gill wrote is basically true but anyone in the pastorate knows that the sheep can sin and do terrible things. Paul of course teaches the same thing: “Brothers (Christian brothers), even if a man is caught in any trespass (bad, bad sin), you who are spiritual restore such a one in a spirit of gentleness; each one looking to yourself, lest you too be tempted” (Gal. 6:1). 

   Read what MacArthur writes: “Christ is Lord, and those who refuse him as Lord cannot use him as Savior. Everyone who receives him must surrender to his authority, for to say we receive Christ when in fact we reject his right to reign over us is utter absurdity.
   What MacArthur writes is absurd! I have been in the ministry almost fifty years and I have never seen a new believer in Christ “refuse, refuse to surrender to his authority, reject” Him as Lord! We all do that when we rebel and sin! That shows our carnality! I have never known anyone who consciously “refuses” Christ in the way MacArthur is claiming. 

   In his book MacArthur also takes to task Lewis S. Chafer for pointing out from 1 Corinthians 2-3 that Paul describes two types of Christians: those who walk spiritual and those who walk carnal. This is what Paul writes. MacArthur jumps on Chafer for simply quoting Paul! MacArthur must not believe Christians can walk carnal! 

   Lordship Salvation will fade away as all error finally does. It is an aberrant position and won’t last! 

   Thanks for asking,

   Dr. Mal Couch

Saturday, January 28, 2006

Is Revelation 13:3 a Reference to the Antichrist or to the Restoration of the Roman Empire?

Dr. Couch, is Revelation 13:3 a reference to the Antichrist or to the restoration of the Roman Empire? 
    ANSWER:  The Antichrist is the “beast” in this passage, but he will be the instrument in restoring the Roman Empire. Note in verse 3 he “appears” to have been slain and to have come back from the dead. This is a counterfeit of the actual death and resurrection of Christ. We are now seeing the progressive construction of the Roman Empire taking place in Europe. There is the European parliament, common money, open borders, a common European taxation, and open trade between countries. 

    We premillennialists and dispensationalists are continually being proven correct in our normal, literal interpretation of Scripture. I don’t know what the poor allegorist/covenant/amillennial guys are going to do! They have no biblical and prophetic answers as to what we see in history that matches up with Scripture. I sometimes watch Dr. Kenney on television. He never can speak of international issues. His audience is going to sleep, and they rarely have a Bible in their laps. Covenant theology is a dead end and can not speak to the issues of the rapture, the tribulation, and the coming earthly reign of Christ in Jerusalem! Poor fellows! 

    To show how demented the covenant guys are in reference to prophecy, we look to Ellicott’s commentary on Revelation. He says, “The beast of Rev. 13 is always the figure of the kingdoms of this world today.” And, “the wild beast (the Antichrist) broke forth when Christianity seemed to have put fetters on the Roman empire.” What??? What sick interpretation. 

  Thanks for asking,

  Dr. Mal Couch

Friday, January 27, 2006

Christian Mandate in the Founding of America

Dr. Couch, many argue that there was not a Christian mandate in the founding of America, and this was supposed to be simply a secular society. How do we answer? 
   ANSWER: The Bible was central to the thinking of the founding fathers even though not all of them (Jefferson) were Christians. People get confused on this issue. They rejected sectarianism, i.e. that this country was to be founded on the Church of England, on Baptist or Methodist doctrine. This they rejected but not the principles of Scripture. Here are some important quotes: 

       “What we obtain too cheaply, we
       esteem too lightly; it is dearness only
       that gives everything its value.
       HEAVEN knows how to put a price upon
       its goods, and it would be strange
       indeed if so CELESTIAL an article as
       freedom should not be highly rated.”
              --Thomas Payne, 1776 

       “For the support of this declaration
       with a firm reliance on the protection
       of the DIVINE PROVIDENCE, we mutually
       pledge to each other, our lives, our
       fortunes, and our SACRED honor.”
              --Declaration of Independence 

   Thanks for asking,

   Dr. Mal Couch

Thursday, January 26, 2006

Dispensational Commentary on Matthew

Dr. Couch, can you recommend a good dispensational commentary on Matthew? I am studying the Sermon on the Mount and need some help. 
    ANSWER:  Yes, indeed I can! Dr. Stanley Toussaint has a great commentary published by Kregel entitled “Behold the King.” He was one of my professors in graduate school. Also, Dr. John F. Walvoord’s volume on Matthew entitled “Thy Kingdom Come” put out by Kregel as well. I am extremely high on Dr. Ed Glasscock’s “Matthew” published by Moody. 

    In a few weeks my own commentary on “Luke” will be coming out, published by AMG Publications, in the 21st Century Commentary series. And, I am general editor with Dr. Ed Hindson on that same series. Some time this spring his “Matthew” should be published by AMG. 

    All the above is good material that will not compromise the true dispensational and premillennial framework of the Word of God. 

   Thanks for asking,

   Dr. Mal Couch

Wednesday, January 25, 2006

Good Dispensational Books in Spanish

Dr. Couch, do you know of any good dispensational and conservative books in Spanish? I teach in a Spanish church and we need good material. 
   ANSWER:  I have an excellent four-color dispensational booklet called God’s Plan of the Ages. You may have all you want, just send me your address and we’ll get them out to you. Also, I highly recommend from Kregel my award winning volume Spanish version of The Dictionary of Premillennial Theology. Kregel’s order phone number is (616) 451-4775. Kregel should also have a Spanish catalog that you can order with other books listed. 

    One of the problems in reaching another culture is that there is a need for better theological works in order to strengthen the pastors. 

   Thanks for asking,

   Dr. Mal Couch

Tuesday, January 24, 2006

What do you think of Marvin Rosenthal’s Pre-wrath Rapture Position?

Dr. Couch, what do you think of Marvin Rosenthal’s Pre-wrath rapture position? 
    ANSWER: When you want Bible answers listen to those capable of truly exegeting the Scriptures. Rosenthal has virtually no biblical training. Those of us who have had years and years of strong theology, and hours and hours of the biblical languages, are far better qualified to explain the truth, and that is in this case, the fact is that the rapture of the church is clearly a PRE-TRIBULATIONAL RAPTURE! 

    A close friend of mine and a fellow graduate school graduate, Dr. Renald Showers, has done the final word on this crazy belief in his book The Pre-Wrath Rapture View (Kregel). Get the book. It will answer the issue once and for all. However I found the Achilles Heal on the subject in Revelation 6:12-17 as clearly shown in my Greek translation. This is the sixth seal, which is way up front at the start of the tribulation and the beginning of the wrath. From the Greek verses 16b-17 we read: 

       “Hide us from the presence of Him who is right now sitting on the throne
       and from the wrath of the Lamb, for the great day of “their” wrath [the wrath
       of the Father and the Son] CAME, ARRIVED, IS HERE, and who is able to
       continue to right now be left standing.”

    In other words at this point, at the beginning of the tribulation, the wrath of God and His Son had already arrived, whereas Rosenthal says the wrath comes further down in the book of Revelation. He even foolishly calls in 6:17 the CAME as a future aorist tense, which will in no way fly by the full context and the grammar of the passage. In other words, Rosenthal has an agenda. He wants desperately to put the church somewhere into the tribulation so it can get “cleaned” up from its sins. This is the nutty view of “tribulation sanctification,” which means Rosenthal does not understand “Positional” sanctification of the believer, and the fact that this “Positional” truth is what gets us to heaven, not some phony cleaning up by the pain of the tribulation! 

    Why is it that people want to always go down the bumpy back road and not stay on the main highway of clear, obvious meaning of a text? It is because they have an axe to grind, an agenda that somehow fits into their preconceived ideas. And, for some reason, they hate like crazy the obvious pre-tribulational view that is so easy to exegete and explain from the plain meaning of the Bible texts. 

   Thanks for asking,

   Dr. Mal Couch

Monday, January 23, 2006

When Did the Synagogues Begin?

Dr. Couch, in Psalm 74:8 there is a mention of the synagogue. I thought the synagogue did not begin until the period between the Testaments. How do we answer? 
    ANSWER:  Many Bible versions translate the word in this verse as “the meeting place.” It is the Hebrew word Mo’av. The Rabbis point out in my Jewish commentaries that this psalm was probably written during the Babylonian captivity when the Temple had been destroyed. They say, “It is preferable to find the setting of the psalm in the onslaught in the sixth century which destroyed the Southern Kingdom and the Temple, and inaugurated the Babylonian captivity.” Thus, more than likely, the Jews in captivity began meeting in small groups that later developed into synagogues in Babylon, and of course in the land, when they returned from the exile. 

    The Holman Dictionary has another take on the passage and writes: “Worship centered around the Temple in Jerusalem. Psalm 74:8, written late in Old Testament times, seems to refer to local places of worship destroyed when the Temple was destroyed.” Unger agrees in his OT Commentary I had re-published. He believes these were “meeting places,” houses of sacred worship where the Law was read even while the Temple was standing. He prefers to call them “houses of sacred meetings.” 

   Thanks for asking,

  Dr. Mal Couch

Sunday, January 22, 2006

What about Calvinism?

Dr. Couch, what about Calvinism? We have a new pastor who says he believes what Calvinism says. We voted him in without knowing what he held on this issue. I am confused and my heart is heavy. Can you help? 
    Your heart should be glad that the young pastor is teaching the great truths about the sovereignty of God. Let me tell you my story: 

    Before I went to college I heard a seminary student teach on God’s sovereignty and His divine election and predestination. I thought he was crazy, so in college, I used all my free time in the library trying to refute him. Lo and behold I ended up the strongest Calvinist you can imagine, minus their teaching on Limited Atonement, which cannot be supported by Scripture. “Basic” Calvinism is what has been taught at all our most formidable Evangelical colleges and seminaries. Many (but not all) in the Covenant and Reformed camp teach Limited Atonement, but as I say, I can debate anyone on this issue to show that it is not biblical. 

    To me “Basic” Calvinism would be: (1) the absolute and total sovereignty of God, (2) the providence of God (He holds all things together and sustains all), (3) the Total Depravity of Man (man is dead in his sins, as a dead body!), (4) the absolute and complete election and predestination of some to salvation, but obviously not all, (5) the security of the believer (all who are saved will be kept saved!). I can prove all of these doctrines by Scripture. I taught the same at the schools founded by D. L. Moody, and by C. I. Scofield who founded Philadelphia College of Bible (now Philadelphia Christian University). 

   As for the freewill of man, you cannot find "freewill" in Scripture, though from Geneis to Revelation, you find that mankind is "responsible." How can man be responsible for his actions and God be sovereign? Or how can God be absolutely sovereign and man be responsible for his actions? I DON'T KNOW, but that is what the Bible shows to be true. 

    You have been taught that Calvinism is “bad” but you have been taught wrong! I suggest you purchase Pink’s Sovereignty of God, and Boettner’s The Reformed Doctrine of Predestination. And if you can get your hands on it, Lewis Sperry Chafer’s Systematic Theology, volumes I and III. Again, I do not hold to Limited Atonement because as a Greek teacher, this view cannot be sustained grammatically and textually. It is the weakest view proposed by hard core Calvinists. Nevertheless, all the Reformers held the views I believe are biblically sustainable. America was founded basically on Calvinistic theology. 

We owe a great debt of gratitude to our understanding of systematic Bible study to John Calvin, yet I do not hold to a view simply because Calvin, or any Bible teacher, taught such. I must be able to explain the Bible textually and verse by verse. And that is what Scofield Ministries is all about—the propagation of biblical truth and sound biblical exegesis. 

   Thanks for asking,

   Dr. Mal Couch

Saturday, January 21, 2006

What about Gerald Standon's Book on the Rapture?

Dr. Couch, what do you think of Gerald Stanton’s book on the rapture entitled Kept From the Hour
    I think it is one of the most outstanding volumes on the doctrine of the rapture ever written. The late Dr. John F. Walvoord thought the same. He constantly recommended it for study. Stanton has missed nothing in fully explaining this doctrine. It still amazes me that anyone could deny such a clear teaching put forth in about fourteen clear passages of Scripture, especially since it is called “the blessed hope.” There is a satanic hatred against this truth, but those so opposing give no reason for their denial of the doctrine. 

    You might also check out my lengthy chapter on the subject that has been reprinted in several nationally published volumes on theology. It has been considered a classic chapter, and it is found in my work entitled: A Biblical Theology of the Church (Kregel).

   Thanks for asking, 

   Dr. Mal Couch

Friday, January 20, 2006

What About Progressive Dispensationalism?

Dr. Couch, I know you speak often of Progressive Dispensationalism. What is your main complaint? 
    Progressive Dispensationalism (PD) is not biblical! It was an attempt by some academicians to hold hands with Covenant theology. In fact, the “founders” of PD virtually admitted the same. They wanted to join the “intellectual” guys, the Reformed crowd, or at least to be accepted by them, so they came up with a compromised view. They say two things that are not biblical:
  1. Christ is now seated on the throne of David “in heaven.” They use Psalms 110:1-2 as proof which says: “The Lord says to my Lord: ‘Sit at My right hand, until I make Thine enemies a footstool for Thy feet.’ The Lord will stretch forth Thy strong scepter from Zion, saying, ‘Rule in the midst of Thine enemies.’” Then they try to tie the Melchizedekian order to the kingly Davidic covenant in verse 4. Wrong again! The book of Hebrews ties the order of Melchizedek to the fact that Christ is a priest “forever according to the order of Melchizedek” (Heb. 7:17), but then points to the fact that this order shows that Christ is the giver of the New covenant (Heb. 7). The Davidic covenant has to do with Christ’s future earthly rule and reign. Note “earthly” not “heavenly.” He is not on the throne of David presently, as further clarified in Revelation 3:21. There Christ differentiates between His Father’s throne in heaven, and His earthly throne He will set up on earth in the Millennium. This is further confirmed by the words of Jesus in Matthew 25:31-on where He speaks in the future tense of His coming to reign on His “glorious throne” on earth, in Jerusalem!
  2. Along with the allegorists and the amillennialists the PD guys try to say that Joel 2 was fulfilled in Acts 2:14-21. Peter does not say that. He does not use any word that indicates this quote is (a) an illustration, or (b) a fulfillment. He says “but this is what was spoken of through the prophet Joel” (v. 16). With the outpouring of the Holy Spirit at Pentecost the New covenant was LAUNCHED, BEGUN but not fulfilled! It will be fulfilled by Israel at their conversion in the kingdom. However, the church presently does BENEFIT by the New covenant but does not fulfill it.
   I understand that some of the PD fellows have changed many of their views and gone back, to a degree, to biblical dispensationalism! You cannot mix apples and oranges—Covenant theology (which is allegorical and amillennial) and true biblical dispensationalism! 

   I suggest you order the book Progresssive Dispensationalism by Dr. Ron Bigalke, published by University Press of America. I have two chapters in that book: “The Relationship Between Covenants and Dispensations” and “The Church Dispensation and the ‘Times of Refreshing.’”

   Thanks for asking,

   Mal Couch, Ph.D., Th.D.

Thursday, January 19, 2006

Is There a Normative Dispensational View Concerning The Seven Churches?

Dr. Couch, I understand many dispensationalists hold to the “time period” in interpreting the seven churches of the book of Revelation. Is there a normative dispensational view concerning these seven churches? What position holds the greatest weight? 
    There is no evidence in Revelation 2-3 that these seven churches represent seven periods of church history, if that is what you are referring to! I use the desert island interpretation and method of studying the Bible. If I was on a desert island, and had no Bible with study notes with me, simply a King James Version, let’s say, how would I take the clear and normative reading of these seven churches? 

    I would interpret them in a normal, contextual, ordinary sense. These were seven actual, existing churches that John was addressing in his day! Any other approach is a “stretch” and is not indicated in the verses. Many Bible teachers are not consistent, though all should be. And I know for a fact that dispensationalists are the most consistent, from Genesis to Revelation, above say, the Reformed folks who are allegorists. 

    To say that the seven churches represent seven periods of church history is a form of allegory and some dispensationalists wrongly have fallen into that “spiritualized” trap! You need to get my Handbook to the Book of Revelation (Kregel) found on the Scofield Prophecy bookstore. I discuss this issue thoroughly. Larkin appears to be the first dispensationalist who came up with the Church-age view. While I admire so much that Larkin did for early dispensationalism, he was wrong with this Church-age view. I write in my Handbook:
       This view, however, faces several problems. First, to make the seven churches    representative of church history, one has to force the specific problems of each     congregation into a certain period of church history. And those issues do not fit as easily a one may wish. Church history is far more complex. 
       Second, the Scriptures give no indication that the churches are to be understood in this  way. We should not impose on the Scriptures a theory without some evidence that it stems from the Bible. Third, one can readily observe that all seven kinds of congregations exist now and have probably existed simultaneously throughout much of church history. (p. 127) 

   Thanks for asking,

   Dr. Mal Couch

Tuesday, January 17, 2006

Should Christians Have an Obligation to Israel Today?

Dr. Couch, you are right on concerning your comments on Islam. I also really appreciate your strong stance on dispensationalism. Should Christians have an obligation to Israel today in the Middle East? Isn’t our main obligation to the great commission and let God work out His plans regarding Israel? Do you think God wants us someway to be involved to help Him achieve His stated purposes in regard to Israel? Please explain. 
    I could take your same argument you are proposing about Israel and apply it to the gospel. Why should we be involved in the great commission, and in sharing the gospel? Why not just let God work out His stated purposes in salvation? 

   You forget that God works through “means” to accomplish His “ends.” He uses us to give the gospel and He uses us to bless wayward Israel. I am not proposing that we have to do something politically or simply from the flesh to help Israel. They are God’s future earthly people and the Lord dearly loves them. I had better not be on the wrong side of that love. I am not proposing that Christians support Israel if they carry out immoral actions. And I assure you to support them in their time of need is not supporting their “aggression,” though innocent people and children will be caught up in combat and die! The Jewish people as a whole are innocent and even patient in their attempt to find peace with the Arabs. But peace will never come until their Messiah comes and sets up His Davidic Kingdom! 

   I support Israel from the statements of several scriptural passages. God made it clear to Abraham, “And I will bless those who bless you, and the one who curses you I will curse, and in you all the families of the earth shall be blessed” (Gen. 12:3). When Israel started to enter the Promised Land, Rahab the harlot of Jericho knew that God was demonstrating Himself through the Jewish people. She said, “I know that the Lord has given you the land, and the inhabitants of the land have melted away before you. … For the Lord you God, He is God in heaven above and on earth beneath” (Josh. 2:9, 11). 

   But the clincher for me as to why I presently love and support the Jewish people (even though they now are in unbelief) is found in Romans 11:28-29: Paul wrote:

   From the standpoint of the gospel they (the Jews) are enemies for your sake, but from the standpoint of God’s choice (His divine election) they are beloved for the father’s sake (for the promises He made to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob); for the gifts and the calling (the divine election) of God are irrevocable (without regret, cannot be taken back). 

   Though presently the Jews do not believe in Christ as their Savior, yet God presently, right now, loves them, and He has made promises to restore them and bring them to salvation, even though right now they have rejected the gospel! This is amazing grace! Look at the verses that follow! 

   Thanks for asking,

   Dr. Mal Couch

Monday, January 16, 2006

Christian from Canada

Hello sir, I am a Christian from Canada. It is refreshing to find someone so bold about Bible prophecy. Not too many people today in our churches talk about prophecy, and especially about the book of Revelation. Thank you so much. 
    In my opinion it is a satanic ploy to retard the truths revealed in Bible prophecy. Satan hates the idea of the return of Christ to reign and rule in this world on His Davidic throne. It must be remembered that Satan attempted to short circuit the reign of Christ by bypassing the cross. He offered Him the kingdoms of the world and all their glory (Matt. 4:8). All Christ had to do was to fall down and worship "the god of this world" (2 Cor. 4:4) and the Lord's death on the cross would be forfeited (Matt. 4:9). 

    This is why amillennial theology is so deceptive. It removes the concept of the millennial and literal reign of Christ on earth for a thousand years. I am not saying that amillennialists are demon possessed but I do say they are demonically deceived. 

    Most pastors today do not take the time to find out the truth. They are poor readers and students of the Word. They are too busy trying to build church monuments, be cheer leaders, coaches, etc. To study and to teach Bible prophecy, and the full council of God, is low on their priority list. Thank you for your observations and for your kind comments. 

   Thanks for asking,

   Mal Couch, Ph.D., Th.D.

G. Campbell Morgan, a Dispensationalist?

Dr. Couch, Is G. Campbell Morgan a dispensationalist, and is he solid?

I am not certain as to his complete teachings on Bible prophecy. He was a godly Bible teacher and a great man. Most of his books unfortunately are now out of print. He wrote some great survey volumes on the Bible, both Old and New Testaments. I am pretty certain he was premillennial.

Most do not realize it but the great W. E. Vine was dispensational and premillennial. You recognize his name for his work on biblical word studies. There are hundreds if not thousands of outstanding Bible teachers of the past who were dispensational but that fact has now been lost on this generation.

Vine wrote two important books: Touching the Coming of Christ and The Rapture and the Great Tribulation. For more on great premillennial godly Bible teachers, you need to purchase my book Dictionary of Premillennial Theology (Kregel). You can visit the book store section on the Scofield Prophecy Studies website or visit your local Christian Book store.

Thanks for asking,

Dr. Mal Couch

Sunday, January 15, 2006

The Theocratic Kingdom

Dr. Couch, I have just begun reading George Peters’ massive work The Theocratic Kingdom. On two separate websites it is said Peters held to a prewrath position and then others say he held to a partial rapture viewpoint. What do you say? 
    When in graduate school for a course in eschatology with Dr. J. Dwight Pentecost I surveyed all of Peters’ prophetic propositions (hundreds), and, I got an A for the course for doing so. But it would take a monumental search to prove the point of what he held. I cannot remember! 

    But I would say that, as I try to remember, the rapture issue was not the first thought in his mind. Peters was focusing on millennial kingdom issues. He had been a flaming Lutheran amillennialist until he started reading the Bible (which most amills do not, it seems!). Since most of the “old guys” had early-on simply lumped the thirteen or fourteen rapture passages in with second coming passages, they flat missed this great teaching in Scripture! The light started dawning around 1840, and to our great surprise, hundreds of outstanding old scholars saw it by the late eighteen hundreds. It is impossible to escape the rapture passages. They have to do with Christ coming for the church and taking the believers home with Him. That is different than the Lord coming to judge the world and to reign over the nations from the Davidic throne in Jerusalem! 

    By finding some of the books of the old guys, I am shocked at how many held to the pretribulational rapture position. 

   Thanks for asking, 
   Dr. Mal Couch

Friday, January 13, 2006

What Is Happening In The Middle East?

Dr. Couch, what is your take on what is now happening in the Middle East, as it may relate to Bible prophecy? 
    There is no question that what is happening is another piece of the prophetic larger picture. We do not want to be a date setters but only a fool, or an amillennialist, would deny the significance of where this is all going. 

    In a Waco, TX newspaper, a crowd of pastors interviewed made it clear they did not believe in a coming apocalyptic period on earth. They allegorize the Word of God and lambaste those who take the Scriptures in their normal, literal interpretation. 

Dispensationalists and premillennialists are daily being proven right concerning Israel and her role in Bible prophecy. Again, it must be clear, that we are not saying what is happening are “fulfillments,” but they are indeed steps toward the great tribulation, the wrath of God upon a sinful and denying world. 

    Doubters need to read Jeremiah 30. The “birth pangs” section is quoted by both Christ in Matthew 24, and the apostle Paul in 1 Thessalonians 5. The tribulation, the birth pangs, is yet future, and it they only take place when God has regathered Israel back into the land in the last days. 

   Thanks for asking,

   Dr. Mal Couch

Thursday, January 12, 2006

Are Dispensationalists Judaizing The Prophecies By Taking Them Literally?

Dr. Couch, I hear some Reformed folks criticize dispensationalists and say that they are but Judaizing the prophecies by taking them literally, as the orthodox Jews did. How do we answer? 
    The orthodox and pious Jews, along with Christ and the disciples, took all the words of the OT prophets in a literal manner. They looked for the Messiah to both die for the sins of the people, but also to reign and rule on the throne of David over Israel and the entire world. Christ’s first coming was literal and historic, and His second coming will be literal and historic. The NT confirms this in so many places but it also “assumes” this fact from the OT, and therefore does not have to continually repeat over and over again all the details of His second coming. 

    Take for example the following in the NT: 

      “When the Son of Man comes in His glory, He will sit on His glorious throne” (Matt. 25:31). 

       God will “send Jesus the Christ appointed for you (Israel), whom heaven must receive until the  period of restoration of all things about which God spoke by the mouth of His holy prophets from ancient times” (Acts 3:20-21).

       “Christ also having been offered once to bear the sins of many, SHALL APPEAR A

  SECOND TIME for salvation without reference to sin, to those who eagerly await Him”
       (Heb. 9:28). 

    The orthodox Jews believe everything dispensationalists believe except they do not believe that Jesus was the promised Messiah. They believe in a worldwide tribulation, an antichrist, a regathering of repenting and believing Israel, a judgment of the nations, the reign of the Messiah in restored Israel. Dispensationalists are in good “interpretative” company. It is the Reformed guys who use pagan Greek allegory to rewrite what the Bible says in the OT about the earthly reign of the Messiah! They replace the promises to Israel with the church. The church becomes the “new” Israel and God is through with the Jews!

   Thanks for asking,

   Dr. Mal Couch

Wednesday, January 11, 2006

Did Paul Know When The Canon Was Going To Be Closed?

Dr. Couch, how do you understand 1 Corinthians 13:10 which speaks of “when the perfect has come, the partial will be done away.” Some Bible teachers are saying this refers to the close of the canon of the NT, not the second coming of Christ. Did Paul know when the canon was going to be closed? What do you think? 
    Of course Paul did not know when the canon of Scripture would be closed, i.e., when the final book of the NT would be written. It happened to be, of course, the book of Revelation that was written by the last apostle, John, around AD 90-95. To understand what is going on in 13:10, one must look at the context of verses 8-11. Paul is discussing the issue of communicating the truth. His point is that spiritual truth is not simply communicated by one of the “communication” gifts (prophecy, tongues [languages], or knowledge), but by love. 

    These three gifts were used by the early church to convey spiritual truth that had not be recorded or written down yet. That was what these three gifts were all about. Some believer had the special gift of teaching (prophecy), or the gift of sharing truth in a mixed linguistic setting, or had an additional dose of spiritual knowledge that others did not have. When the canon was completed these gifts gradually faded away. 

    We know this especially about the gift of “languages” (tongues). In my book The Coming of the Holy Spirit, I quote Eusebius, Irenaeus, Chrysostom, and Augustine, who tells us tongues was a language and that it was with the early church but had ceased. This would fit what Paul said. 

    The apostle said (in Greek), “Prophecy will in the future be made inoperative, will be set aside.” “Tongues will in the future stop themselves.” He says of knowledge, “It will in the future stop itself.” The early church concurs this happened! These statements of Paul work perfectly with what we know in church history. 

    By the way, when Paul writes “when the perfect comes,” the word perfect is teleion and means that which is complete or whole. In is in the neuter gender and could not refer to Christ. He is masculine! I have the greater proof that Paul is referring to the cessation of the special gifts for communicating spiritual truth than others have that it is referring to the second coming. And besides, the rapture comes before the second coming. The church will be gone in the rapture. Paul has something else in mind in this passage besides the rapture! 

    You need my book "The Coming of the Holy Spirit". 

   Thanks for asking,

   Dr. Mal Couch

Tuesday, January 10, 2006

Is Baptism Necessary For Salvation?

Dr. Couch, what is going on in Acts 2:38? Some say that passage teaches that baptism is necessary for salvation. Can you explain? 
    Anyone who has taken basic English grammar, and of course Greek grammar, can answer this question easily. No, the passage is not teaching baptism is essential for salvation. The Greek grammar explains it all! 

   First of all, remember in English grammar that you do not mix singulars and plurals in the same sentence. But to do so in Greek is okay because the grammar is more distinct in its structure and syntax. It is easy to spot when one goes from one to the other without destroying the rules of Greek grammar. 

   With that said, here is what we see grammatically when we bunch all the plurals together and the singular construction together: 

   The verse best reads 

       “Repent (all of you, plural) … for the forgiveness of your sins, and you (all,
       plural) shall receive the gift of the Holy Spirit then let each of you (singular)
       be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ." 

   Alford writes: “Repentance, accompanied by faith in the forgiveness of sins in Christ, would be the receiving of the gift of the Holy Spirit, followed by the outward ritual of water baptism.” Water baptism is not the cause of salvation, it is only the sign of salvation and the cleansing work of the Spirit symbolized by water. 

   The BKC (Bible Knowledge Commentary) says, “The verb makes a distinction between singular and plural verbs and nouns. The verb ‘repent’ is plural and so is the pronoun ‘your’ in the clause ‘so that your sins may be forgiven,’ literally, ‘unto the remission of your sins.’ The imperative ‘be baptized’ is singular, setting it off from the rest of the sentence.” Thus personal water baptism follows after all the other issues in the verse have been accomplished by faith. The Jews never considered water as necessary for redemption. This is something that is the creation of “church theology” divorced from the background from whence it came! 

   It is easy when we study the Bible in the original grammar in which the Holy Spirit gave to us God’s Word! 

   Thanks for asking,

   Dr. Mal Couch

Monday, January 9, 2006

Do Dispensationalists Focus Too Much on Prophecy?

Dr, Couch, dispensationalists seem to focus more on prophecy than on practical living. How do you answer? 
    Dispensationalists seem to focus more on prophecy than on practical living. How do you answer? 

    We dispensationalists focus on prophecy because the Covenant guys do not, and probably over fifty percent of Scripture is prophetic! With you question I could not help but think of a statement by John Gregory, written in 1886, from his book The Seven Laws of Teaching. He wrote: 

       In the Bible more than in any other book are reviews needful and valuable. Not only does the Bible most require and most repay repeated study, but most  of all ought Bible knowledge to be familiar to us, if it be, as is claimed, the  Word of God. Its great truths ought to dwell in the heart and in the conscience  as a divine presence; its very language should haunt the memory as echoes from the hills of heaven. Its words and precepts should rest clear and precise in the  thoughts as the dictates of duty and the PROPHECIES OF DESTINY. Its grand  and divine doctrines, its vital precepts, its BLESSED PROMISES, its sublime  histories, and still SUBLIMER PROPHECIES, should inhabit continually the daily bread of our God-ward life. 

   Thanks for asking,

   Dr, Mal Couch

What About Home Churches?

Dr. Couch, I understand that Home Churches are growing like crazy. What do you think about this? 
  ANSWER: Because so many people are fed up with the Seeker Friendly church and the Hot Rock Congregations, they want to find peaceful and solid fellowship and teaching in the out-of-the-way places, like in a warm home setting. 

    I could not agree more whole-heartedly! While we know the early church traditionally met on the first day of the week, Sunday, this was not a “moral” imperative to do so. They were also instructed by Paul, “Therefore when you meet together …” which may imply that they did not meet consistently every week, but when they did, “do so and so”! (1 Cor. 11:20). 

 Home churches are exploding in number, and, more people are traveling some distances only a few times a month, in order to find a Bible teaching fellowship! 

   The Lord will always have His spiritually thirsty sheep who will go anywhere to hear His Word! 

   Thanks for asking,

   Dr. Mal Couch