2 Thessalonians (Program #4) – A Further Word of Encouragement
According to 2 Thessalonians chapter 2 there are three definite things that need to take place prior to the Lord’s second coming and the rapture of the church.
First, the apostasy of God’s people must occur. Then the son of perdition, the man of lawlessness, the one we call anti-Christ must raise up and be revealed. And finally, the temple in the Holy City, Jerusalem must be rebuild, because at the certain point before the visible return of Christ, this anti-Christ sits himself in the temple and exalt himself above all that is called God.
There is no single passage in the Bible gives us all the details and specific timing of the end time events. For those we need to go to many different passages in the Bible. One of the most important of which is found in Daniel chapter 9 in the Old Testament and what is known as the 70 weeks of Daniel.
Daniel 9:24 says:”Seventy weeks are apportioned for your people and for your holy city, to close the transgression, and to make an end of sins, and to make propitiation for iniquity, and to bring in the righteousness of the ages, and to seal up vision and prophet, and to anoint the Holy of Holies.“ Well, the 70 weeks unfold in the next few verses and we will do our best to touch them today in a brief way.
Zechariah (Program #13) – The Prophecies of Encouragement (4)
In the Old Testament book of Zechariah, we are given extraordinary revelations of the New Testament Christ. We see Him as the Shepherd coming in an intimate and loving way to care for His scattered flock. We also see Him being rejected and even crucified for our redemption. But one of the most striking views of Christ in Zechariah is as the coming Triumphant Warrior to fight against Anti-Christ, the embodiment of Satan and to rescue God’s people, Israel, from their destiny on this earth, the war of Armageddon.
Zechariah (Program #9) – The Prophecies of Encouragement (1)
About 2500 years ago, the prophet Zechariah’s burden was to help the returned people of Israel to see God’s purpose. Today, God’s intention and His desire is that we will be one with Him. He’s brought us back to the very site, to the ground, even to the foundation of the temple typified by the recovery back to Jerusalem from Babylon in Zechariah’s day. Now God wants us to see that His interest, His desire and His burden are to finish the building of the temple, to build up the Body of Christ.
Zechariah (Program #3) – The Visions of Consolation and Promise (2)
Zechariah chapter 2 is one of the mysterious chapters in the Bible and to be sure the book of Zechariah is considered quite mysterious by many, if not most believers. A man with a measuring line appears in verse 1 and this man is measuring Jerusalem. Then, Jehovah declares that He will be the glory within Jerusalem and the fire round about her protecting the city and His people and its inhabitants. All of this is against the backdrop of the previous seventy years of history where Jehovah seemingly was silent and inactive. What has caused the Lord to rise up and take such an active and vigorous stand on behalf of His people? The answer is clear – His people has returned from captivity in Babylon and they are re-inhabiting Jerusalem and Jehovah is re-inhabiting His house, the temple.
During the days of the degradation of the house of Israel, God’s word was primarily limited to his overcomers, the prophets, such as Isaiah and Jeremiah. But as the people’s hearts began to turn back to the Lord, other prophets were still needed to bear Jehovah’s testimony and to release His speaking for His people in that age to accomplish His purpose and plan. Among these prophets were Haggai and Zechariah who shared in the captivity of Israel in Babylon but who were raised up by the Lord to accompany His people back to Judah and to encourage and exhort them to go back and rebuild the temple of Jehovah within Jerusalem.
Isaiah (Program #2) – The Salvation of Jehovah to His Beloved People and the Nations (1)
“The vision of Isaiah the son of Amoz, which he saw concerning Judah and Jerusalem. Hear, O heavens, and hearken, O earth, For Jehovah has spoken: I have brought up children, and I have raised them; And yet they have rebelled against Me.” These are the words of the Old Testament prophet Isaiah as he began his book of prophecy. God’s people have rebelled and their righteous and loving Father after confronting them with His complains begins the work of chastisement and drawing the stubborn people back to Himself. How does God deal with His own when they strayed? What can we see from this ancient account that is meaningful for us today as we live the Christian life?
The book of Ecclesiastes was written by King Solomon after his fall as described in 1 Kings 11:1-8 in his following after the foreign wives. Ecclesiastes begins, “The words of the Preacher, the son of David, the king in Jerusalem. Vanity of vanities, says the Preacher; Vanity of vanities; all is vanity. What advantage does a man have in all his work which he does under the sun? A generation goes and a generation comes, But the earth stands forever. Also, the sun rises, and the sun sets…All things are wearisome; No one is able to tell it; The eye is not satisfied with seeing, Nor is the ear filled with hearing. What has been is what will be, And what has been done is what will be done, And there is nothing new under the sun…I have seen all the works that are done under the sun, and indeed, all is vanity and a chasing after wind…“
Haggai (Program #1) – The Building of the House of Jehovah in Relation to Israel’s Welfare and Messiah’s Coming
Some of the most penetrating words in all of Scriptures are found in the Old Testament Prophet, Haggai. They are penetrating because they have immediate relevant to every believer. And they touch us in some of the most carefully guarded places in our hearts.
“Is it time for you yourself to dwell in your paneled-up houses?” he writes, “while this house,” God’s House “lies waste?..Consider your ways, you sown much but you bring in little, you eat but there is no satisfaction.”
Haggai was a prophet raised up by the Lord to accompany His people on their return to Judah and Jerusalem following the 70 long years of captivity in Babylon. And when they returned they faced the temple, God’s house in ruin and in desperate need of rebuilding. But they like so many of us today have become completely preoccupied and engrossed with their own needs and situations. And the result as imply by Haggai probing questions is that, in spit of all of their effort and dedication without God’s hand of blessing in their lives, they and we would never be satisfied regardless of how much material wealth or possession we acquired. These are questions that must be asked again and again among God’s people.
Psalms (Program #39) – The Preciousness of Zion and Jerusalem in the Experiences and Praises of the Saints (1)
15 Psalms from Psalms 120 to 134 comprised a section known as the Psalms of ascent. They are all very short and very sweet. Lord will we will see they bring us to the high peaks.
Psalms 120:1 ” In my distress I called out to Jehovah, And He answered me.”
That tells you a lot right there. The whole thing starts with distress and up until Psalms 119 is full of the law and they loved the law but they can’t keep the law, eventually the children of Israel don’t follow the law. And eventually start to serve idols. So, the result is they go to captivity and they are in distress. These Psalms of ascent started out with distress. If you do not have the distress where you go down you can never come up. So there is a lot of appreciation. more…
Psalms (Program #26) - Christ as the Center of God’s Move on the Earth
Did you know that the book of Psalms actually contains 150 different Psalms in all? So many poetic and prophetic utterances. Of course, as we have seen, some of these Psalms have a very high and profound content expressing the divine thought revealing Christ in brilliant detail. Others are not so high. In fact some are very low in the thought that they convey. Bit by bit as we read and study this book, we can learn to cultivate a taste for the high peaks contain in the Psalms. Perhaps the highest peak of all in the divine revelation of Christ in the book of Psalms is found in Psalms 68. This oft quoted Psalm actually begins with a quotation of its own. David the Psalmist quotes Moses from Numbers chapter 10 “as he sets out with the completed tabernacle to lead the children of Israel away from Sinai and ultimately into the good land of Canaan with the ultimate destination being Zion in the midst of Jerusalem and the cloud of Jehovah was over them by day when they set out from the camp”, Moses writes in Numbers 10. “And when the Ark set out, Moses said, Rise up, O Jehovah, and let Your enemies be scattered; And let those who hate You flee before You.”