Self Mutilation During the Great Trib

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Today's "On Track" Reading Begins At
Matthew 18:7

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Matthew 18:7-9 probably contains one of the hardest sayings of Jesus found in the Bible.

Is he really telling us there is ever an appropriate time to cut off pieces of our anatomy, or is he speaking metaphorically?

I won't get sidetracked onto a second subject, but I will say that there are those who claim
that Jesus' teachings about hell fire are metaphorical.

But Jesus knew there would always be some who would take every word he said as literally as possible, so I do not believe he would say something as extreme as the words contained
in Matthew 18:8-9 without good reason... and without meaning it.

I will also cite the scripture which says Jesus is the Way, "Truth" and Life (John 14).

He does not and cannot lie.

He wasn't lying when he spoke of hell fire, and he wasn't lying when he warned there would come
a time when self-mutilation would be preferable to the alternative.

So when exactly, is this awful time he is speaking of (when such unspeakable "offenses"  [:7] will be occurring) that will instigate a need remove hands or feet--members of our bodies that could cause us to commit a sin so grievous (a sin that cannot be repented of) that we would end condemned forever and being consigned to hell fire?

And when will the righteous ever be entering
into life "maimed?"

Question: If a child of God dies maimed or crippled, do they arrive in Heaven like that?

Absolutely not, because the soul cannot be maimed or crippled like the physical
body can.

Which brings me to my conclusion:

I believe, in answering the disciple's
question about who was greatest in the Kingdom (18:1), Jesus went on (as he frequently did) to give them the really important information about the Kingdom (such as how to "get in").

I believe (in Matthew 18:8-9) he was actually speaking to believers who would be living in the time just prior to his physical return.

I believe he was referring to the time of the Great Tribulation, the Mark of the Beast, and entrance into his earthly Kingdom--not Heaven (Matthew 24:27-30).

One of the reasons I believe this is, because
there is only one judgement mentioned in the
scriptures where both the righteous and the
wicked receive judgment and reward or
condemnation at the same judgment
(Matthew 8:11-12, 13:41-43, 18:8-9, 25:32-34, 41,46).

Only the saved are being judged and rewarded at The Judgment Seat of Christ
(1 Corinthians 3:12-15 2 Corinthians 5:10),

And only the wicked are being judged and at the
Great White Throne Judgment (Revelation 20:11-15).

It is at the Judgment of the Nations (which takes place, on earth, at the end of the Great Tribulation) when the mortal survivors of the Great Tribulation are judged and either
granted entrance into the Kingdom (life) or are cast into hell fire (Matthew 25:34,46).

Those who take the mark will not even be
going through that judgement. They are condemned already (Revelation 19:20), and the angels will be sent by Jesus, at his return, to gather them up and cast them into the fire (Matthew 13:41-43).

But everyone else (those who did not take the mark) must pass under the rod of judgment (Ezekiel 20:37-38).

Now, let's go back to the only instance where self mutilation is recommended in the scriptures.

What could possible justify such a thing?

Question: Where are the only two places, on the
human body where the Mark of the Beast will be placed?

Answer: The right hand or the forehead (Revelation 13:16.

If a person does not have a right hand, that only leaves the forehead... and what does the scripture say will befall many who refuse to take the mark?

They will be beheaded (Revelation 20:4).

Jesus, in Matthew 18:8-9, is making a way out of a terrible temptation that many know they will have a difficult time resisting.

But they also know they will be sealing their own eternal doom if they don't succeed in resisting it.

So there will be some who take Jesus at his word.

It's an awful way, but for some will be the "only" way or Jesus would not have offered it as a viable alternative.

If a person is so determined to stay out of hell fire (not to take the Mark of the Beast), that they are willing cut off which ever member of their anatomy they believe will give them the most temptation to give in...
 
then they most certainly will allow themselves to be beheaded later if that becomes necessary.

if any of these courageous souls survive the Great Tribulation, then they most certainly will enter into life
(Christ's earthly Kingdom). 
 
And they will enter in "maimed" (how long they will stay that way is up to Jesus).

But, according to the words of our Lord himself....

At the moment they are told, "enter thou into the joy of the Lord" (Matthew 25:21,23)....
 

They will still be maimed
(Matthew 18:8-9).

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