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Good Report or Bad Report


(This is from the Bible study Tongues.)



When the twelve Israelite spies were sent into the Promised Land, only two, Joshua and Caleb, came back with a good report (see the Bible study The Sons Of Jephunneh). The other ten lacked the faith to believe what God had told them about the promised place of their inheritance, in spite of what they saw with their eyes (Numbers 13:25-33). They returned with a bad report (i.e. unfaithful/unbelief). God will always test His servants in like manner to see if we will believe Him or not, if we will be faithful or not.

The writer of Hebrews declares in chapter eleven;


“By faith Abel offered to God a better sacrifice than Cain, through which he obtained the testimony [3140- see def. below in John 1:6-9] that he was righteous, God testifying [3140] about his gifts, and through faith, though he is dead, he still speaks. By faith Enoch was taken up so that he would not see death; AND HE WAS NOT FOUND BECAUSE GOD TOOK HIM UP; for he obtained the witness [3140] that before his being taken up he was pleasing to God [see the Bible study Well Pleased]. And without faith it is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God must believe that He is and that He is a rewarder of those who seek Him.”

(Hebrews 11:4-6/NASU)


So we see that Enoch did not see death because, like Jesus (Matthew 3:17), the Father was well pleased with him (see notes for Hebrews 11:5-6 below). To please God is by definition of the Greek, “to gratify entirely, to be well-pleasing.” Only those who act by faith, doing what God says which is the context of this entire great chapter, can be declared “well-pleasing” in His sight. This was the Father’s testimony/good report of Jesus. God rewards those who “carefully and diligently seek after” Him (see the NIV for this passage), investigating and searching out His will and way so as to then do, not just hear, what He desires (this is true faith). He rewards those who crave after Him. Paul said to the church in Ephesus, “…you were formerly darkness, but now you are Light in the Lord; walk as children of Light… trying to learn what is pleasing to the Lord.” (Eph. 5:8-10/NASU) The reward is “the reward of the inheritance,” the promised inheritance of eternal life from the Lord (Colossians 3:24).

Paul said to the Christians in the city of Corinth;


“…for we walk by faith, not by sight… Therefore we also have as our ambition, whether at home or absent, to be pleasing to Him.”

(2 Corinthians 5:7, 9/NASU)


A bad report from the Lord will be declared over all His people who give “bad reports” (i.e. an unfaithful witness) regarding what He has promised. The opposite is also true; a good report will be obtained by all who hear and do what the Spirit is saying to them. They will obtain the witness/testimony from God from their “good report,” faith-filled life in Christ to the world, thereby obtaining the promised eternal life in Him. They will not die at the end of this age when Christ returns, but will instead cross over into the Promised Land, glorified and made perfect together with the faithful witnesses throughout all history. (See the Bible study The Testimony.)



John 1:6-9Like John, the one who gives a “good report” of Christ to the world is the faithful servant who pleases Him (see the Bible study Well Pleased). They do not hide the Light within by a disobedient life, but by obedience are allowing His light to shine through them upon those living in darkness. We, His followers, are called to be His beacon of life to those perishing. It’s the evidence given (i.e. witness) before mankind that He is the Messiah, the Light of life.

If the lost do not see Jesus it is because His people are not allowing Him to be manifested through them. Jesus exhorted His disciples, saying, “You are the light of the world. A city set on a hill cannot be hidden; nor does anyone light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on the lampstand, and it gives light to all who are in the house. Let your light shine before men in such a way that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father who is in heaven.” (Matthew 5:14-16/NASU) According to Jesus, good works give a good report to all that see us.

6 There came a man sent from God, whose name was John.

7 He came as a witness [3141], to testify [3140] about the Light, so that all might believe through him.

8 He was not the Light, but he came to testify [3140] about the Light.

9 There was the true Light which, coming into the world, enlightens every man.

NASU


NT:3141 marturia (mar-too-ree'-ah)

(Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance)

from NT:3144; evidence given (judicially or genitive case):

KJV - record, report, testimony, witness.

(Thayer’s Greek Lexicon)

1. a testifying: the office committed to the prophets of testifying concerning future events (Rev. 11:7)

2. what one testifies, testimony: universally (John 5:34)


NT:3140 martureo (mar-too-reh'-o)

(Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance)

from NT:3144; to be witness, i.e. testify (literally or figuratively):

KJV - charge, give [evidence], bear record, have (obtain, of) good (honest) report, be well reported of, testify, give (have) testimony, (be, bear, give, obtain) witness.

(Thayer’s Greek Lexicon)

to be a witness, to bear witness, testify,

a. in general; absolutely, to give (not to keep back) testimony (John 15:27)

b. emphatically; to utter honorable testimony, give a good report: with a dative of the person (Luke 4:22)

c. the middle voice, according to a false reading, to conjure, implore (1 Thess. 2:12 (11))



Enoch; The Pleasing One Of The Lord That Will Not Die


Hebrews 11:5-6At the end of this age when the Lord comes to “snatch away” His Bride, she will be, in character, as Enoch was to God; pleasing to Him (see the Bible study Well Pleased). He obtained the “witness,” the good report from God and, thereby, did not “see death.” Neither will those at Christ’ return who obtain a good report from Him. (See the Bible study Elul; The Season Of Preparation And The 40 Days Of Favor.)

The Greek for “seek” (NASU), “earnestly seek” (NIV), or “diligently seek” (KJV) in the different versions is ekzeteo(ek-zay-teh'-o) which is defined as “to seek out for oneself, search for, investigate, scrutinize, beg, crave.” It is our earnestly/diligently seeking after him that He will reward. Our finding of Him will allow for us to not be found by mankind when He judges the earth.

5 By faith Enoch was taken up [3346] so that he would not see death; AND HE WAS NOT FOUND BECAUSE GOD TOOK HIM UP [3346- see Genesis 5:21-23 right below]; for he obtained the witness [3140] that before his being taken up [3331] he was pleasing to God.

6 And without faith it is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God must believe that He is and that He is a rewarder [3406- “one who pays wages, rewarder”] of those who seek [1567] Him.

NASU

Hebrews 11:5-6

5 By faith Enoch was taken [3346] from this life, so that he did not experience death; he could not be found, because God had taken him away. For before he was taken, he was commended as one who pleased God.

6 And without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him.

NIV

Hebrews 11:5-6

5 By faith Enoch was translated [3346] that he should not see death; and was not found, because God had translated him: for before his translation he had this testimony, that he pleased God.

6 But without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him.

KJV


NT:3346 metatithemi (met-at-ith'-ay-mee)

(Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance)

from NT:3326 and NT:5087; to transfer, i.e. (literally) transport, (by implication) exchange (reflexively) change sides, or (figuratively) pervert:

KJV - carry over, change, remove, translate, turn.

(Thayer’s Greek Lexicon)

to transpose (two things, one of which is put in place of the other)

1. to transfer (Acts 7:16)

2. to change (Hebrews 7:12)

3. passive voice or (more commonly) the middle voice, to transfer oneself or suffer oneself to be

transferred, i. e., to go or pass over (Galatians 1:6)


NT:3331 metathesis (met-ath'-es-is)

(Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance)

from NT:3346; transposition, i.e. transferal (to heaven), disestablishment (of a law):

KJV - change, removing, translation.

(Thayer’s Greek Lexicon)

1. a transfer (Hebrews 11:5)

2. change (Hebrews 7:12)

metathesis [NT:3331] - "a transposition, or a transference from one place to another" (from meta, implying "change," and tithemi "to put"), has the meaning of "change" in Hebrews 7:12, in connection with the necessity of a "change" of the Law (or, as margin, law), if the priesthood is changed (see B, No. 3). It is rendered "translation" in 11:5, "removing" in 12:27.

(from Vine's Expository Dictionary of Biblical Words, Copyright © 1985, Thomas Nelson Publishers.)

"change of position" (transliterated in Eng., "metathesis," a transposition of the letter of a word), from meta, implying "change," and tithemi, "to place," is used only in Hebrews and translated "removing" in 12:27; "translation" in 11:5; "change" in 7:12.

(from Vine's Expository Dictionary of Biblical Words, Copyright © 1985, Thomas Nelson Publishers.)


NT:1567 ekzeteo (ek-zay-teh'-o)

(Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance)

from NT:1537 and NT:2212; to search out, i.e. (figuratively) investigate, crave, demand, (by Hebraism) worship:

KJV - enre-) quire, seek after (carefully, diligently).

(Thayer’s Greek Lexicon)

a. to seek out, search for (Acts 15:17)

b. to seek out, i. e. investigate, scrutinize (1 Peter 1:10)

c. to seek out for oneself, beg, crave (Hebrews 12:17)

d. to demand back, require (Luke 11:50)



Genesis 5:21-23See the note below.

21 Enoch [2585] lived sixty-five years, and became the father of Methuselah.

22 Then Enoch walked with God three hundred years after he became the father of Methuselah, and he had other sons and daughters.

23 So all the days of Enoch were three hundred and sixty-five years.

24 Enoch walked with God; and he was not, for God took [3947] him.

NASU


OT:2585 Chanowk (khan-oke')

(Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance)

from OT:2596; initiated; Chanok, an antediluvian patriarch:

KJV - Enoch.

(Thayer’s Greek Lexicon)

as a proper noun, masculine:

Enoch = "dedicated"

1) the oldest son of Cain

2) a son of Jared and father of Methuselah whom God took home to heaven without dying

as a proper noun, location:

3) the city which Cain built and named after himself; as a proper noun, masculine: Hanoch = "dedicated"

4) a son of Midian, the third child

5) the oldest son of Reuben


Enoch’s name means “initiated” or “dedicated.” The witness of God is that he walked with Him, which means his life was one of dedication toward God. Because of his earnest seeking of Him, it is written that He pleased God and was taken by Him. He did not die but was translated from here into His presence. The Hebrew for “took” in verse 24 is laqach (law-kakh'), [3947]. It’s defined as;


“to take, receive, take away… Primarily this word means “to take, grasp, take hold of,” as when Noah reached out and “took hold of” the dove to bring it back into the ark (Genesis 8:9). A secondary meaning is “to take away, remove, take to oneself,”… Of special interest is the use of the verb in the absolute sense: God “took away” Enoch so that he was not found on earth (Genesis 5:24). This meaning of receiving one into heaven to Himself seems to be the force of Psalm 73:24 and perhaps of Psalm 49:15.”

(from Vine's Expository Dictionary of Biblical Words, Copyright © 1985, Thomas Nelson Publishers.)


The Brown, Driver and Briggs Hebrew Lexicon describes laqach in numerous ways; “to take, to get, to fetch, to lay hold of, to seize, to receive, to acquire, buy, to bring, to marry, to take a wife, to snatch, to take away.” Two of these definitions stood out to me. The first was “to snatch, to take away.” As I stated in regards to Hebrew 11:5-6 above, Enoch is a picture of those at the end of this age whose walk with God is pleasing to Him and will not die. They will be translated/transformed into the image of God in the first gathering of God’s people (see the Bible study Elul; The Season Of Preparation And The 40 Days Of Favor for much more on this subject).

The second definition to grab my attention was “to marry, to take a wife.” The word is used in the story of the unnamed servant who was sent out by Abraham searching for a bride for his son, Isaac (Genesis 24). It’s an incredible picture of the Father sending out His trusted (i.e. dedicated) servants looking for a Bride for His Son, Jesus Christ. The story begins, saying;


“Abraham said to his servant, the oldest of his household, who had charge of all that he owned, ‘Please place your hand under my thigh, and I will make you swear by the Lord, the God of heaven and the God of earth, that you shall not take a wife for my son from the daughters of the Canaanites, among whom I live, but you will go to my country and to my relatives, and take [3947] a wife for my son Isaac.’”

(Genesis 24:2-4/NASU)


So again, Enoch is a type of the wise virgin who is prepared and dressed in readiness. They are the devoted Bride of Christ who will not die but will be joyfully “snatched away” by Him when He returns.

To be dedicated to the Lord is to be consecrated, or set apart unto Him. It is to be wholly dedicated to Christ as a bride is to be to her husband. We are commanded to sanctify, or set apart Christ as Lord in our hearts (1 Peter 3:15). Those of His children who listen and obey will be rewarded in like manner as Enoch was. They will be translated into the very presence of the Lord God Almighty. (See the Bible studies Glorified and Consecrated.)



(This passage is from the Bible study The Right To Possess And Sonship.)

Revelation 21:6-8The overcomer sons and daughters of God. See the note below.

6 Then He said to me, "It is done. I am the Alpha and the Omega, the beginning and the end. I will give to the one who thirsts from the spring of the water of life without cost [1432].

7 "He who overcomes [3528] will inherit these things, and I will be his God and he will be My son [sonship!].

8 "But for the cowardly [1169- “timid, fearful, faithless”] and unbelieving [571- “without faith or trust, unfaithful”] and abominable [948- “to be disgusted; to loathe or detest; properly, to turn oneself away from because of the stench”] and murderers and immoral persons [4205- “a man who indulges in fornication, a male prostitute”] and sorcerers [5332] and idolaters and all liars [5571- “lying, deceitful, false, a false witness”], their part [3313- “a division or share, a part due or assigned to one, a lot or destiny”] will be in the lake that burns with fire and brimstone [“burning sulphur”], which is the second death." [See the Bible study The Second Death.]

NASU


NT:3528 nikao (nik-ah'-o)

(Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance)

from NT:3529; to subdue (literally or figuratively):

KJV - conquer, overcome, prevail, get the victory.

(Thayer’s Greek Lexicon)

to conquer

a. absolutely, to carry off the victory, come off victorious (Rev. 3:21; 6:2)

b. with the accusative of the object: tina, by force (Luke 11:22)


NT:5332 pharmakeus (far-mak-yoos')

(Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance)

from pharmakon (a drug, i.e. spell-giving potion); a druggist ("pharmacist") or poisoner, i.e. (by extension) a magician:

KJV - sorcerer.

(Thayer’s Greek Lexicon)

one who prepares or uses magical remedies; a sorcerer (Rev. 21:8)


The Lord revealed to John another example of those who will receive His inheritance. They are those who “overcome.”The Greek for this is nikao (nik-ah'-o). It’s defined as “to subdue, to conquer, to carry off the victory, to come off victorious, to prevail.” We are told that it is only the overcomers who “will inherit these things.”

Not every follower of Christ, though, is guaranteed to be an overcomer. It is a “right” as a Christian to gain, through obedience, our sonship in Him. But as we are now seeing in America, God given rights can not only be ignored by those who have the right of access to them, but can also be taken away through careless negligence by those who would desire to enslave us again.

Overcoming is not automatic, as some would teach, but conditional upon our running the race per His revealed guidelines or face the eternal consequence of being disqualified (1 Cor. 9:24-27) from gaining the victory (nikao) and being revealed as a son or daughter who persevered and, like Jesus, overcame and took possession of the reward set before us (Hebrews 12:1-2). As we have already seen, the right of possession/inheritance/redemption is only granted to those followers of Christ who are sons/daughters, because they have overcome. This can only occur as we “work together” with the Holy Spirit (2 Cor. 6:1).

(The following insights are new, for this study.)

The Greek for “liars” is defined as “lying, deceitful, false, a false witness.” A false witness is an unfaithful witness, one who gives a bad report/witness of Christ to the world. As a Christian, we are representatives of the Lord to them. A false witness testifies what is not true. We present a false image of who God is. A disobedient, unfaithful heart reveals another Jesus, one of our own making, per our own values and principles rather than the will of God. This type of Christian betrays Jesus as Lord. Like Judas, it will cost them their place in Christ (John 13:8).



Genesis 37:1-2While tending the flocks with his brothers, Joseph saw things he thought were not good and then brought back a bad report to Jacob, his father.

1 Now Jacob lived in the land where his father had sojourned, in the land of Canaan.

2 These are the records of the generations of Jacob. Joseph, when seventeen years of age, was pasturing [7462- “to tend, to graze, to feed, to shepherd”] the flock with his brothers while he was still a youth, along with the sons of Bilhah [1090]and the sons of Zilpah [2153], his father's wives. And Joseph brought back a bad [7451- “bad, evil, wicked, sore”] report [1681] about them to their father.

NASU


OT:1090 Bilhah (bil-haw')

(Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance)

from OT:1089; timid; Bilhah, the name of one of Jacob's concubines; also of a place in Palestine:

KJV - Bilhah.

(Brown Driver Briggs Hebrew Lexicon)

Bilhah = “troubled”

proper noun, feminine:

1) Rachel's handmaid whom she gave to Jacob as a concubine, mother to two of Jacob's children, Dan

and Naphtali proper noun, location:

2) a city in Simeon


OT:2153 Zilpah (zil-paw)

(Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance)

from an unused root apparently meaning to trickle, as myrrh; fragrant dropping; Zilpah, Leah's maid:

KJV - Zilpah.

(Brown Driver Briggs Hebrew Lexicon)

Zilpah = “a trickling”

the Syrian given by Laban to Leah as a handmaid, a concubine of Jacob, the mother of Asher and Gad


1681 dibbah (dib-baw')

(Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance)

from OT:1680 (in the sense of furtive motion); slander:

KJV - defaming, evil report, infamy, slander.

(Brown Driver Briggs Hebrew Lexicon)

whispering, defamation, an evil report

a) whispering

b) defamation, defaming

c) an evil report, an unfavorable saying



1 Samuel 2:22-25Eli heard through the people about his son’s wicked acts with the women who were serving the Lord. He said to them, “it is not a good report that I hear spreading among the Lord's people.” His sons did not listen to the rebuke of their father because “it was the Lord's will to put them to death.” So again, we see that a bad report before the Lord of His children can, like the ten spies, cause Him to put them to death. It’s a matter of how hard our hearts are and whether or not, when confronted by the Lord as His sons, we repent.

22 Now Eli, who was very old, heard about everything his sons were doing to all Israel and how they slept with the women who served at the entrance to the Tent of Meeting.

23 So he said to them, "Why do you do such things? I hear from all the people about these wicked deeds of yours.

24 No, my sons; it is not a good report that I hear spreading among the Lord's people.

25 If a man sins against another man, God may mediate for him; but if a man sins against the Lord, who will intercede for him?" His sons, however, did not listen to their father's rebuke, for it was the Lord's will to put them to death.

NIV



Isaiah 8:2The Lord’s declaration of taking to Himself “faithful witnesses for testimony.”

2 "And I will take [5749] to Myself faithful [539] witnesses [5707] for testimony, Uriah [223- “flame of Jah/Yahweh is my light (flame)”] the priest and Zechariah [2148- “Jah has remembered/Jehovah (Yahweh) remembers”] the son of Jeberechiah [3000- “blessed of Jah/Jehovah (Yahweh) blesses”]."

NASU


OT:5749 `uwd (ood)

(Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance)

a primitive root; to duplicate or repeat; by implication, to protest, testify (as by reiteration); intensively, to encompass, restore (as a sort of reduplication):

KJV - admonish, charge, earnestly, lift up, protest, call (take) to record, relieve, rob, solemnly, stand upright, testify, give warning, (bear, call to, give, take to) witness.

(Brown Driver Briggs Hebrew Lexicon)

1) to return, to repeat, to go about, to do again

a) (Piel) to surround, to go round and round

b) (Pilel) to restore, to relieve

c) (Hithpalel) to be restored

2) to bear witness

a) (Qal) to bear witness, to say again and again

b) (Hiphil)

1) to testify, to bear witness

2) to cause to testify, to take or to call as witness, to invoke

3) to protest, to affirm solemnly, to warn, to exhort or enjoin solemnly, to admonish, to charge

c) (Hophal) to protest, to give warning

‘ud [OT:5749] – “to take as witness, bear witness, repeat, admonish, warn, assure protection, relieve.” This verb, which occurs 42 times in biblical Hebrew, has cognates in Ugaritic (perhaps), Arabic, Aramaic, Syriac, Phoenician, and Ethiopic.

In 1 Kings 21:10 ‘ud means “to bear witness”: “And set two men, sons of Belial, before him, to bear witness against him....” The word means “to warn” in Jeremiah 6:10: “To whom shall I speak, and give warning, that they may hear?”

(from Vine's Expository Dictionary of Biblical Words, Copyright © 1985, Thomas Nelson Publishers.)


OT:539 'aman (aw-man')

(Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance)

a primitive root; properly, to build up or support; to foster as a parent or nurse; figuratively to render (or be) firm or faithful, to trust or believe, to be permanent or quiet; morally to be true or certain; once (Isa 30:21; interchangeable with OT:541) to go to the right hand:

KJV - henc, assurance, believe, bring up, establish, fail, be faithful (of long continuance, steadfast, sure, surely, trusty, verified), nurse, (-ing father), (put), trust, turn to the right.

(Brown Driver Briggs Hebrew Lexicon)

to support, to confirm, to be faithful

a) (Qal) to support, to confirm, to be faithful, to uphold, to nourish

1) foster father (a substantive)

2) foster mother, nurse

3) pillars, supporters of the door

b) (Niphal)

to be established, to be faithful, to be carried, to make firm

1) to be carried by a nurse

2) to made firm, to be sure, to be lasting

3) confirmed, established, sure

4) verified, confirmed

5) reliable, faithful, trusty

c) (Hiphil)

to stand firm, to trust, to be certain, to believe in

1) to stand firm

2) to trust, to believe


OT:5707 `ed (ayd)

(Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance)

contracted from OT:5749 concretely, a witness; abstractly, testimony; specifically, a recorder, i.e. prince:

KJV - witness.

(Brown Driver Briggs Hebrew Lexicon)

witness

a) witness, testimony, evidence (used of things)

b) witness (used of people)



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