Paul, the author of Philippians, wrote this thank you letter to the Philippians Christians between AD 60-62 in the Roman prison, chained to a Roman Pretorian guard, According to church tradition, Emperor Nero released Paul in AD 62, but rearrested and beheaded him in AD 66 at the Mamertine prison in Rome.
This is one of the 4 Pauline prison epistles,. Philippians, Ephesians, Colossians, and Philemon.
The theme of Philippians is “joy and rejoice in Christ”.
17 Not that I seek the gift, but I seek the fruit that abounds to your account. 18 Indeed I have all and abound. I am full, having received from Epaphroditus the things sent from you, a sweet-smelling aroma, an acceptable sacrifice, well pleasing to God. 19 And my God shall supply all your need according to His riches in glory by Christ Jesus. 20 Now to our God and Father be glory forever and ever. Amen.
Paul was not greedy for money. He encouraged the Philippians Christians, and us, to give generously out of a grateful heart, to receive God’s blessings in return. Paul was in chains, hungry, secluded, and needy, but his spirit soars like an eagle. He was contented, at peace, and grateful. He thanked his supporters for their timely and generous support. God will supply all that he needed out of the abundant riches of Christ. God is no debtor to anyone. He owned every cattle on a thousand hills.
“But this I say: He who sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and he who sows bountifully will also reap bountifully”
1 Corinthians 9:6
“Give, and it will be given to you: good measure, pressed down, shaken together, and running over will be put into your bosom. For with the same measure that you use, it will be measured back to you.”
“And my God shall supply all your need according to His riches in glory by Christ Jesus”
What have you got to worry about? God knows all your needs and all your problems. He will supply all that you need. Surrender your life to Him. Let Him take over the driver’s seat of your life. God will replenish the things that Covid pandemic took away. and eaten Do not throw in the towel. Trust Him. Do nor fear, just believe.
Heaven Father, thank You for abundant provisions. Help us to sow generously to the work of Your kingdom. Help us to store up treasures in heaven that lasts into eternity, in Jesus’ name, Amen
The Gospel of Matthew opened with a genealogy of 42 generations, from Abraham to David (14), from David to the Babylonian exile (14), and from the Babylonian exile to Jesus Christ (14). This proved that Jesus was from the lineage of Abraham and David.
The genealogy included 5 women, Tamar, Rahab, Ruth, Bathsheba, and Mary, who gave birth to Jesus. Joseph was named the husband of Mary. Joseph was Jesus Christ’s legal father but not His biological father because Mary was conceived by the Holy Spirit.
18 Now the birth of Jesus Christ was like this: After his mother, Mary, was engaged to Joseph, before they came together, she was found pregnant by the Holy Spirit. 19 Joseph, her husband, being a righteous man, and not willing to make her a public example, intended to put her away secretly. 20 But when he thought about these things, behold, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream, saying, “Joseph, son of David, don’t be afraid to take to yourself Mary as your wife, for that which is conceived in her is of the Holy Spirit. 21 She shall give birth to a son. You shall name him Jesus, for it is he who shall save his people from their sins.”
Mary was engaged to Joseph. She and a virgin who miraculously conceived by the Holy Spirit. Joesph was a righteous man. When He found out that Mary was pregnant, he wanted to send her away quietly, so as not to shame her. God sent the angel Gabriel to Joseph in a dream and told him not to be afraid to take Mary as his wife because she was conceived by the Holy Spirit. Gabriel pronounced that Mary shall give birth to a son and His name shall be called Jesus. The Greek word for Jesus is Joshua, which means, God saves. Jesus saves us from our sins. Immanuel means God with us. Joseph took Mary as his wife and did not consummate the marriage until after Jesus was born. Jesus’ virgin birth fulfilled the Old Testament prophecy of Isaiah 7:14, prophesied 700 years before Christ.
Therefore the Lord himself will give you a sign. Behold, the virgin will conceive, and bear a son, and shall call his name
The genealogy of Jesus proved beyond any doubt that He was a descendant of Abraham and David. Anyone who claimed to be Christ (Messiah) must prove that He is a descendant of Abraham and David. God preserved the genealogy of Jesus to prove that He is Christ. Isaiah prophesied the virgin birth of Jesus Christ 700 years before He was even born! The accuracy of Bible prophecy was simply minded boggling! No one can give a prediction 700 years before it happens and fulfill it 700 years later. Only God can do this. Jesus fulfilled 581 Old Testament prophesies! The mathematical probability for this to happen by random chance is 1 in 10 to the power of 17!
Jesus Christ is Immanuel, which means God with us. If you are a Christian, God lives in you as the third person of the Holy Trinity, the Holy Spirit.
Heavenly Father, thank You for preserving the genealogical record of Jesus Christ to prove that He is Christ (Messiah). Thank You for that we have a written record of the life story of Jesus Christ through the eyewitness account of the apostle Matthew. Help us to encounter Christ through the pages of Your infallible, inspired, and inerrant words. Thank You for sending Jesus Christ into the world 2000 years ago to save us from our sins. Thank You that You are Immanuel, God with us, in Jesus’ name, Amen.
The virgin will conceive and give birth to a son, and will call him Immanuel
Heavenly Father, please direct our thoughts to connect with You and speak to us from Your word. You are pleased when we talk to You. Help us to pray without ceasing. Nourish us spiritually through the living Bread of Life. Revive our hearts, renew our spirits, restore our faith, ignite our souls, and transform our minds in service and obedience, in Jesus’ name, Amen.
Luke 1: 26-35
26 Now in the sixth month the angel Gabriel was sent by God to a city of Galilee named Nazareth, 27 to a virgin betrothed to a man whose name was Joseph, of the house of David. The virgin’s name was Mary. 28 And having come in, the angel said to her, “Rejoice, highly favored one, the Lord is with you; blessed are you among women!” 29 But when she saw him, she was troubled at his saying, and considered what manner of greeting this was. 30 Then the angel said to her, “Do not be afraid, Mary, for you have found favor with God. 31 And behold, you will conceive in your womb and bring forth a Son, and shall call His name Jesus. 32 He will be great, and will be called the Son of the Highest; and the Lord God will give Him the throne of His father David. 33 And He will reign over the house of Jacob forever, and of His kingdom there will be no end. 34 Then Mary said to the angel,’’ How can this be since I do not know a man?”35 And the angel answered and said to her, “The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Highest will overshadow you; Therefore the Lord himself will give you a sign: The virgin will conceive and give birth to a son, and will call him Immanuel. He, therefore, also, that Holy One who is to be born will be called the Son of God
(Read the rest of Luke 1 and Matthew 1)
In the 6th month of Elizabeth’s pregnancy, God sent the angel Gabriel to visit a teenage Jewish girl, Mary of Nazareth, who was a virgin. Mary’s cousin, Elizabeth, had miraculously conceived even though she was barren and advanced in years. Gabriel pronounced a blessing on Mary saying that she was highly favoured by God. Mary was shocked by the unexpected angelic visitation. Gabriel announced to Mary that she shall conceive and give birth to a son and shall call Him Jesus. Jesus, Son of the Most High God shall reign over the throne of His father David. At this time, the throne of David did not exist! 1000 years before Christ, God covenanted with David that his house, kingdom, and throne, shall be established forever. One of his descendants shall reign on this throne as Messiah. Jesus fulfilled this Davidic covenant in 2 Samuel 7:16. House of Jacob refers to the nation of Israel. Jesus, the Messiah shall reign over the nation of Israel and His kingdom shall be an everlasting kingdom.
Mary was shocked because she was a virgin. The angel Gabriel proclaimed that nothing was impossible with God. The power of the Holy Spirit shall come upon her and make her conceive miraculously. This shall be a sign to her from the Lord, Isaiah 7:14. He shall be called Immanuel, Holy One, and Son of God. Mary willingly submitted to the will of God and called herself maidservant of the Lord. Immanuel, in Greek, means God with us. Jesus is God with us in the flesh, through His incarnation. Incarnation, which means embodied in flesh.
Joseph was Jesus’ legal father but not his biological father. because Mary was conceived by the power of the Holy Spirit. Mary was a descendant of the tribe of Judah and a descendant of David.
Your house and your kingdom will be made sure forever before you. Your throne will be established forever
2 Samuel 7:16
Therefore the Lord himself will give you a sign: The virgin will conceive and give birth to a son, and will call him Immanuel
Jesus was conceived by the Holy Spirit and born by the virgin Mary. Isaiah prophesied this 700 years before Christ was born. No one can make a prediction 700 years earlier and make it come to pass 700 years later. Only God can do this because He is omnipotent, omnipresent, and omniscient. This was only one of 351 Old Testament prophecies fulfilled by Christ. The statistical chance for all these prophecies to be fulfilled by random chance is 1 in 10 to the power of 17. This is mathematically impossible, but with God all things are possible. This proves beyond any doubt that the Bible is truly the word of God.
Jesus is God in the flesh. 2000 years ago, God step out from eternity and entered the time-space continuum to become a human being through the virgin birth of Mary. He lived a perfect life and died a cruel death on a Roman cross to pay the payment of your sins for us. All we have to do is believe in Jesus and weour shall be saved. This is the good news of the gospel.
Heavenly Father, thank You for speaking to us today. Strengthen us in the faith for personal life enrichment. Engage us with Your word daily. Feed our weary souls and quench our spiritual thirst. Develop in us, a desire to know You more. Let Your word dwell richly in us. Thank You for including us in Your plan of salvation for the world. Thank You for the hope that we have in You. Even as we read about the birth of Your Son, we are humbled by His humble beginnings. We pray that You help us understand what we read today, in Jesus’ name, Amen.
Revelation 1 begins with the prologue in verses 1 to 8, followed by John’s vision of the Glorified Risen Christ in verses 9 to 20.
The Greek word for revelation is apokalupsis which means to unveil. This book unveils the truth about Jesus Christ. This revelation came from God, the Father, to Jesus Christ, the angels, the apostle John, and the seven churches in Asia Minor (Turkey). God unveiled a vision of future events to the apostle John. God promised a special blessing to everyone who reads, hears, believes, and applies the teachings in this book.
John wrote this book while in exile, on the Greek island of Patmos, in the Aegean Sea, off the coast of Asia Minor. While in the Spirit, John heard God’s voice telling him to write what he was about to see into a book. John sent this book to the seven churches of Asia Minor, viz. Ephesus, Smyrna, Pergamum, Thyatira, Sardis, Philadelphia, and Laodicea.
We need to thank apostle John for giving us a glimpse into the appearance of the Glorified Risen Christ in these eight verses of scripture.
12 I turned to see the voice that spoke with me. Having turned, I saw seven golden lamp stands. 13 And among the lamp stands was one like a son of man, Daniel 7:13, clothed with a robe reaching down to his feet, and with a golden sash around his chest. 14 His head and his hair were white as white wool, like snow. His eyes were like a flame of fire. 15 His feet were like burnished brass as if it had been refined in a furnace. His voice was like the voice of many waters. 16 He had seven stars in his right hand. Out of his mouth proceeded a sharp two-edged sword. His face was like the sun shining at its brightest. 17 When I saw him, I fell at his feet like a dead man. He laid his right hand on me, saying, “Don’t be afraid. I am the first and the last, 18 and the Living one. I was dead, and behold, I am alive forever and ever. Amen. I have the keys of Death and of Hades. 19 Write therefore the things which you have seen, and the things which are, and the things which will happen hereafter. 20 The mystery of the seven stars which you saw in my right hand, and the seven golden lamp stands is this: The seven stars are the angels of the seven assemblies. The seven lamp stands are seven assemblies (read the whole of Revelation 1 on your own).
John turned around and saw a vision of seven golden lamp stands and the Glorified Risen Christ. The lamp stands were menorahs. ‘Son of Man’ is the messianic title of Jesus Christ. The seven golden menorahs, represent the seven churches of Asia Minor, Revelation 1:20. The Glorified Risen Christ walked in the midst of the seven churches. John described the vision of the Glorified Risen Christ as vividly as he could. He was dressed in a full-body garment and had a golden sash around His chest. His head and hair were as white as wool and snow, His eyes were burning like fire. His feet were as polished as brass. His voice was like the sound of a waterfall. He carried seven stars on His right hand. The seven stars represent the seven angels of the seven churches. He had a sharp double-edged sword in His mouth. The double-edged sword was the word of God, the Sword of the Spirit, Hebrews 4:12, Ephesians 6:17.. His face was as bright as the sun. John’s description of the Glorified Risen Christ is strikingly similar to that of Daniel 7:9.
John collapsed at the feet of the Glorified Risen Christ like a dead man. He laid His right hand on John and woke him up, saying He is the first and the last, who was dead, resurrected, and is alive forever. He has the keys to death and Hades. He commanded John to write the thing that was, the things that are, and the things that are to come. Here is an outline of the book of Revelation.
Chapter 1, the thing that was, the vision of the Glorified, Risen Christ.
2. Chapters 2 to 3, the things that are, Christ’s seven letters to the seven churches of Asia Minor.
3. Chapters 4 to 22, the things that are to come, the tribulation, the war of Armageddon, Christ’s second coming, the millennial kingdom, the great white throne judgment, the new heaven and the new earth, and the world without end, etc.
I watched until thrones were placed, and one who was ancient of days sat. His clothing was white as snow, and the hair of his head like pure wool. His throne was fiery flames, and its wheels burning fire
For the word of God is alive and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart
And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.
Jesus Christ is the Alpha and the Omega, the author and finisher of you and my faith. He is from eternity past to eternity future. He is the pre-existent, self-existent, and eternal God. He is before time, space, and matter. He is I AM, Eigo Eimi, Yahveh, Adonai, Elohim, Great High Priest, Melchizedek, and Messiah. Jesus Christ is God manifest in the flesh. He is fully God and fully man.
Christ appeared to John on the island of Patmos and commissioned him to write the book of revelation. Today, you can visit the island of Patmos as a tourist. You can also visit the ruins of the seven churches of Revelation in Turkey. The Bible is about real people, real places, and real events. Whoever hears God’s voice and believes in Christ will be saved.
Most certainly I tell you, he who hears my word and believes him who sent me has eternal life, and doesn’t come into judgment, but has passed out of death into life
Heavenly Father, thank You for preserving this wonderful book of Revelation through 2000 years of world history, for our benefit. We pray for the anointing of the Holy Spirit to teach us the book of Revelation. Help us to interpret, understand, and apply the truth of Your word. We pray for open eyes, open ears, open hearts, open minds, open spirits, and open heaven. We pray for the double-edged Sword of the Spirit to convict, correct, teach, and train to live righteous lives, in Jesus’ name, Amen.
The Jew’s favorite question to Jesus was what they must do to inherit eternal life. The rich, young ruler man was no different. Luke 18:23 described him as very rich. Matthew 19:20 described him as young. Luke 18:1 described him as a ruler. Mark 10:17 said he ran to Jesus and knelt down to worship Him. He was very sincere and desperately wanted eternal life.
18 A certain ruler asked him, saying, “Good Teacher, what shall I do to inherit eternal life?” 19 Jesus asked him, “Why do you call me good? No one is good, except one: God. 20 You know the commandments: ‘Don’t commit adultery,’ ‘Don’t murder,’ ‘Don’t steal,’ ‘Don’t give false testimony,’ ‘Honor your father and your mother.’”, Exodus 20:12-16, Deuteronomy 5:16-29. 21 He said, “I have observed all these things from my youth up.” 22 When Jesus heard these things, he said to him, “You still lack one thing. Sell all that you have, and distribute it to the poor. Then you will have treasure in heaven; then come, follow me.” 23 But when he heard these things, he became very sad, for he was very rich. 24 Jesus, seeing that he became very sad, said, “How hard it is for those who have riches to enter into God’s Kingdom! (read the rest of Luke 18 on your own)
The rich young ruler asked Jesus what he must do to possess eternal life. He addressed Jesus respectfully as a Good Teacher. Jesus asked why he called Him good. Was he implying that Jesus was God? Jesus quoted the last 5 of the 10 commandments. The man happily ticked all the boxes. ‘I passed’ or so he thought! But Jesus gave him one more box to tick. Liquidate all his assets, donate all the proceeds to charity, follow Jesus, and inherit eternal life. He could not tick this box. He walked away from the deal with great sorrow because he was very rich.
What went wrong? Jesus diagnosed his spiritual condition as covetousness. Here was a man who loved possessions more than God. The radical surgery for this condition is to take away possessions. He chose to walk away from Jesus. He was very close to inheriting eternal life (salvation) but missed it. Sincerity will not do it. Keeping a set of laws will not do it. Only a radical change of heart will do it. Salvation required a spiritual heart transplant. He must be born again, John 3:3.
Jesus answered and said to him, “Most assuredly, I say to you, unless one is born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God”
John 3:3, NKJV
Here was a sinner who thought he was righteous (self-righteous). Did he pass the test of law-keeping? No way! Jesus exposed his true spiritual condition and gave him a chance to confess his sin. When asked to liquidate and donate to charity, the rich young ruler walked away from Jesus. It is easier for a camel to enter the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God. This is a hyperbole, an exaggerated figure of speech. The eye of a needle is a tiny little aperture. The camel is the biggest animal in Israel. But God can make this happen. Zaccheaus was a very rich man but he was saved, Luke 19:1-10.
The disciples left everything to follow Jesus and they will inherit eternal life, Luke 18:29-30.
He said to them, “Most certainly I tell you, there is no one who has left houses, or wife, or brothers, or parents, or children, for God’s Kingdom’s sake, who will not receive many times more in this time, and in the world to come, eternal life.”
Jesus’ injunction to liquidate and donate to charity is a specific injunction to the man in this story. This is not a universal call to poverty as a prerequisite to salvation. His love for money prevented him from following Jesus. Instead of possessing money, money possessed him.
The challenge to you and me today is to hold lightly to the things of the world. Prioritize your lives and put Jesus first before everything else. You can serve only one master. Will you serve Jesus or money?
Follow Jesus wholeheartedly. Do not let anything stand in the way.
So, what must you do to inherit eternal life?
It is not what you do. It is what Jesus had already done for you on the cross 2000 years ago. Jesus paid the price of your sin for you on the cross. All you need to do is to believe Him. Salvation is by grace through faith in Christ and not by work. Ephesians 2:8-9.
for by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God, not of works, that no one would boast.
Heavenly Father, thank You for the timeless lesson on the rich, young ruler. Help us not to covet. Help us to seek first Your kingdom and Your righteousness. Help us to surrender our lives to You and make You the center of our lives. Help us to love You vertically and help others horizontally. Thank You for salvation by grace through faith in Christ, in Jesus’ name, Amen.
Heavenly Father, we come before You with reverence and awe. We pray for quiet, soft, receptive, and teachable hearts. Speak to us as we listen to You, in Jesus’ name, Amen.
The Word became flesh
The Word became flesh and made His dwelling among us. We have seen His glory, the glory of the one and only Son, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth
I will dissect this verse into 5 parts.
The Word became flesh
The Word is Jesus Christ. The Word became flesh means incarnation. Incarnate means embodied in flesh. Jesus is the embodiment of God in human flesh. Jesus of Nazareth stepped out from eternity into our time-space continuum and became a man 2000 years ago. This explains why the calendar is divided into BC and AD.
In the beginning, was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God
That which was from the beginning, which we have heard, which we have seen with our eyes, which we have looked at and our hands have touched, this we proclaim concerning the Word of life
1 John 1:1
made His dwelling among us
The Greek word for “dwelling” is “tabernacle”. God dwelled among the Israelites in the tabernacle and later, the temple. The tabernacle or temple was a foreshadow of Jesus Christ. Today, Jesus tabernacled among us. The body of a Christian is the temple of the Holy Spirit. When someone is born again, the Holy Spirit tabernacled in his/her body. During the inauguration of the first temple, Solomon asked whether God would really dwell in the temple that he built, 1 Kings 8:27. God answered this question 1000 years later when Jesus came to earth and dwelled among us!
But will God really dwell on earth? The heavens, even the highest heavens, cannot contain you. How much less this temple I have built!
1 Kings 8:27
Or do you not know that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit who is in you, whom you have from God, and you are not your own?
1 Corinthians 6:10
If anyone loves Me, he will keep My word, and My Father will love him, and we will come to him and make Our dwelling place with him
John 14:23, amplified Bible
we have seen His glory
The Greek word for glory is “doxa” which means splendour. “We” is a plural pronoun. John and the apostles had seen, heard, and touched Jesus. They saw the glory, grace, and truth of the Son of God. John was not only an eyewitness of Jesus but also a reliable one. John was a cousin of Jesus because his mother Salome and Jesus’ mother Mary were cousins. As children, they would have played together as a family. This was how close they were.
the glory of the one and only Son, who came from the Father
The Greek word for one and only is “monogenes’’ which means the only unique or the only begotten. Jesus Christ, the unique Son of God, came from the Father as the Second Person of the Holy Trinity.
He was in the beginning with God
No one has ever seen God, but the one and only Son, who is himself God and is in closest relationship with the Father, has made him known
full of Grace and Truth
Grace is to get something that we do not deserve. Truth is something that is authentic. The Hebrew words for grace and truth are “hesed” and “emet”, which means unfailing love and faithfulness. Hesed and emet in the Old Testament correspond to Grace and Truth in the New Testament. Salvation is by the Grace of God through faith in Christ, who is Truth.
So, the Word became human and made his home among us. He was full of unfailing love and faithfulness
John 1:14 (a), NLT
For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith, and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God
I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me
And you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free
Jesus Christ stepped out from eternity into our time-space domain to become a human being. Jesus Christ is God in a human body. He is not just a good man, wise teacher, or prophet. He is fully God and fully man. He is God whom you can know, see, hear, love, and relate to. He is the message, the Word of God.
Do you know Jesus? Do you want to know Him? You can know Him right now, right where you are.
If you want to know Jesus say this prayer with me:
Dear God, I confess that I am a sinner. Please forgive me. I believe You died on the cross to pay the punishment of my sin for me. I surrender my life to You, in Jesus’ name I pray,
If you prayed this prayer you are born again as a child of God. This is the first step. Find a Bible-believing church near you, inform the church pastor about your decision, and join in the fellowship of believers to grow and mature in the faith.
Heavenly Father, thank You for sending Your Son Jesus Christ to step out of eternity into our time-space domain to live among us. Thank You for showing us Your Glory, Unfailing Love, Faithfulness, Grace, and Truth. Thank You for the gift of salvation and eternal life by grace through faith in Christ, in Jesus’ name, Amen.
In the first year of King Darius’ reign, Daniel studied the prophecy of Jeremiah and came to the conclusion that the seventy years of exile were coming to an end. He prayed, interceded, and fasted in sackcloths and ashes, to seek the Lord’s will.
While Daniel was still praying, angel Gabriel appeared to him in a vision, saying that the Lord had answered his prayer. In Daniel 9:24-27, angel Gabriel gave a profound end-time prophecy from the Lord.
In this article, I will walk you through the prophecy of the 70 weeks of Daniel. This interpretation is based on a pre-millennial, pre-tribulation rapture position.
24 Seventy ‘sevens’ are decreed for your people and your holy city to finish the transgression, to put an end to sin, to atone for wickedness, to bring in everlasting righteousness, to seal up vision and prophecy, and to anoint the Most Holy Place. V 25 Know and understand this: From the time the word goes out to restore and rebuild Jerusalem until the Anointed One, the ruler, comes, there will be seven ‘sevens,’ and sixty-two ‘sevens.’ It will be rebuilt with streets and a trench but in times of trouble. V 26 After the sixty-two ‘sevens,’ the Anointed One will be put to death and will have nothing. The people of the ruler who will come will destroy the city and the sanctuary. The end will come like a flood: War will continue until the end, and desolations have been decreed. V 27 He will confirm a covenant with many for one ‘seven.’ In the middle of the ‘seven’ he will put an end to sacrifice and offering. And at the temple, he will set up an abomination that causes desolation, until the end that is decreed is poured out on him (Read the rest of Daniel 9 on your own).
Daniel 9: 24-27
Verse 24, seventy sevens
Seventy ‘sevens’ refer to seventy weeks of years i.e. 490 years. Your people refer to Daniel’s people i.e. the Jews. Your holy city refers to Daniel’s holy city i.e. Jerusalem. This prophecy is for the Jews and Jerusalem. The entire duration of the prophecy is 490 years. At the end of 490 years, there will be no more sin, transgression, and wickedness and there will be everlasting righteousness. The vision and prophecy will be sealed, and the Most Holy place of the temple will be anointed.
Verses 25-26, Part 1
The prophecy has a starting point and an ending point. The starting point is from the time a decree was given to rebuild Jerusalem. The ending point will be the second coming of Christ as will be explained later.
The prophecy has two parts. Verses 25 to 26 spelled out Part 1. It started with the issuing of the decree to rebuild Jerusalem in 445 BC and ended with the first coming of Christ in 33 AD.
From the decree to rebuild Jerusalem to the first coming of Christ will be 7 X 7 plus 62 X 7 years i.e. 49 + 434 i.e. 483 years. The decree to rebuild Jerusalem was given by King Artaxerxes Longimanus to Nehemiah in Nehemiah 2:8-9 in 445 BC. The first coming of Christ as Messiah was on Palm Sunday in 33 AD. Zechariah prophesied this around 500 BC, Zechariah 9:9.
445 BC to 33 AD is 478 Gregorian/ Roman/ solar years, based on 365 days per year. However, the Jewish lunar calendar is based on 360 days per year. 478 Gregorian/ Roman/ solar years is equivalent to 483 Jewish/ lunar years.
Jerusalem was rebuilt in times of trouble amidst opposition from the Samaritans. On Good Friday, 33 AD, Christ was killed (cut off). In 70 AD, Jerusalem and the temple were destroyed by the Romans. Wars and more wars had continued unabated ever since.
Hence, the first 483 years of Part 1 as spelled out in verses 25 to 26 were fulfilled by the first coming of Christ.
Verse 27, Part 2
Part 2 is prophesied in verse 27. The last 7 years of world history remain unfulfilled. The ‘He’ of verse 27 is the antichrist. The starting point of Part 2 will be the signing of a peace treaty between the Jews and the Arabs, brokered by the antichrist. In the middle of this 7-year, the antichrist will set up the abomination of desolation in the future third temple. Part 2 will ends with the second coming of Christ at the culmination of world history.
Between Part 1 and Part 2 is an interlude called the church age, and we are now living in this interlude for the past 2000 years.
God stopped the prophetic timer at the 483rd year. of the prophecy. The clock will start ticking again after the rapture, 1 Thessalonians 4:16-17.
The antichrist will allow the Jews to rebuild the third temple and resume the temple sacrifice. In the middle of the 7 years, he will set up his image in the Most Holy Place and force the Jews to worship him. This image will be called the abomination of desolation, Mathew 24:15. The Jews’ refusal to worship the image will trigger off intense persecution by the antichrist in the last 3 1/2 years of world history. This is called the great tribulation.
In 174 BC, Antiochus Epiphany IV erected a statue of Zeus in the Most Holy Place, splashed swine blood on the altar, and desecrated the second temple. The future antichrist will desecrate the third temple in the same way during the tribulation. Jesus Christ will come back from heaven on a white horse and defeat the antichrist in the battle of Armageddon., Revelation 9:11 and following. He will set up His millennial kingdom on earth and fulfill the seventy weeks prophecy of Daniel, Rev. 20:4 and following.
Please note that the rapture and the second coming of Christ are two separate events.
“And may I have a letter to Asaph, keeper of the royal park, so he will give me timber to make beams for the gates of the citadel by the temple and for the city wall and for the residence I will occupy?” And because the gracious hand of my God was on me, the king granted my requests”.
Rejoice greatly, Daughter Zion! Shout, Daughter Jerusalem! See, your king comes to you, righteous and victorious, lowly and riding on a donkey, on a colt, the foal of a donkey
So when you see standing in the holy place ‘the abomination that causes desolation,’ spoken of through the prophet Daniel, let the reader understand
For the Lord himself will come down from heaven, with a loud command, with the voice of the archangel and with the trumpet call of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first. After that, we who are still alive and are left will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And so we will be with the Lord forever.
1 Thessalonians 4:16-17
I saw the heaven opened, and behold, a white horse, and he who sat on it is called Faithful and True. In righteousness, he judges and makes war.
I saw thrones, and they sat on them, and judgment was given to them. I saw the souls of those who had been beheaded for the testimony of Jesus, and for the word of God, and such as didn’t worship the beast nor his image and didn’t receive the mark on their forehead and on their hand. They lived and reigned with Christ for a thousand years.
The Bible has given us sufficient information on how the world will end. The future is not looking optimistic. More troubles will break out as we move closer and closer to the end of world history. The covid 19 pandemic had already taken a toll on every one of us. The dust of the pandemic has not even settled and war broke out in Ukraine! We are truly in uncharted territories. If this war gets out of control and nuclear war breaks out, millions of lives will be wiped out in a matter of seconds! Whether you believe in a pre, mid, or post-tribulation rapture, one thing is for sure. Christ’s second coming is not too far away. Are you ready for His return? Have you accepted Christ as your Lord and Savior? Today, if you hear His voice, do not harden your heart. Come to Christ. With a simple prayer, confess your sin, accept Him as your Lord and Savior, and surrender your life to Him. You will be saved and even if anything happened, you will have eternal life.
Heavenly Father, thank You for Your word to us today. We know that Your second coming is not that far away. We know that You are in control of world events. We pray that the war in Ukraine will not get out of control but will come to an end soon. We pray that You will protect the people of Ukraine. We pray for the soldiers, the civilians, the refugees, and all others. May Your mercy and grace be upon all the people of Ukraine. Help us to surrender our lives to You because our future is in Your hand, in Jesus’ name we pray, Amen.
God created the world in six days. Whether this is a literal 24 hours day or not is something that is hotly debated. According to God’s reckoning, 1 day is as 1000 years and 1000 years is as 1 day, 2 Peter 3:8. God created, transcends, and is outside of the time, and space continuum. There are two schools of thought regarding the age of the universe. Is the age billions of years old or is the universe 6000 plus years old? There is also the gap theory. Is there an interval of time between Genesis 1:1 and Genesis 1:2? These are hotly debated issues among Bible scholars. As far as the Bible is concerned God is the creator of the universe. In the beginning, God created the heavens and earth. The universe is not a product of a massive explosion billions of years ago. The universe is not a product of random chance and mutations. Human beings did not evolve from monkeys or gorillas
“But don’t forget this one thing, beloved, that one day is with the Lord as a thousand years and a thousand years as one day.”
2 Peter 3:8,
In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth. 2 The earth was formless and empty. Darkness was on the surface of the deep and God’s Spirit was hovering over the surface of the waters. 3 God said, “Let there be light,” and there was light. 4 God saw the light, and saw that it was good. God divided the light from the darkness. 5 God called the light “day”, and the darkness he called “night”. There was evening and there was morning, the first day.
Genesis 1: 1-4
The Bible begins with “in the beginning God created”. We do not know when this beginning was. Is it billions of years or thousands of years? God created the universe in eternity past. The universe did not evolve by random chance over billions of years. It takes a lot more faith to believe in evolution than creation. God has no beginning. He is outside the time-space continuum. He is pre-existent, self-existent, eternal, from everlasting to everlasting, from eternity past to eternity future, from the Alpha, and to the Omega.
The six days of creation have a pre-set template, starting with “let there be…..” and ending with ”there was evening and there was morning………”
On the first day, God created the heavens, the earth, and the light. There are three heavens. The atmosphere from the ground to the clouds is the first heaven. The outer space from the clouds to the galaxies is the second heaven. The abode of God’s throne beyond the galaxies is the third heaven. When God created the earth, it was dark, empty, and structureless. Hebrews word for create is bara, which means to create something out of nothing, or ex-nihilo in latin.
God separated the light and the darkness, calling the darkness, evening, and the light, morning, and this was the first day. God defined a day as one evening and one morning. A Jewish day starts from 6 pm in the evening until 6 pm the next evening.
The Holy Spirit circled around the formless, structureless, dark, empty, and watery earth. God spoke, let there be light and light appeared on site. This was not the light of the sun but the light of God’s glory, Revelation 21:23. Jesus Christ is the word of God’s word, John 1:1.
The Trinitarian God of the Bible, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit created the universe. God saw that the light was good. He separated the light from the darkness and called them day and night. Hebrews for God is Elohim, a plural noun.
In the presence of the Holy Spirit, God, the Father spoke, and it came to be. Jesus Christ is the spoken Word of God, the father.
The city has no need for the sun, neither of the moons, to shine, for the very glory of God illuminated it, and its lamp is the Lamb.
“in the beginning was the word, and the word was with God, and the word was God.”
Genesis declared that everything is created by God. If you believe that God created the heavens and the earth in 6 days, you will have no problem believing the rest of the Bible. How big is your God? How big is your faith? It takes more faith to believe in evolution than in creation. Faith is the key to unlocking spiritual truth. Believe and you will see the glory of God. Without faith, it is impossible to please God.
Heavenly Father, help us to understand Your word. We pray for the anointing of the Holy Spirit to enlighten us and to give us wisdom and understanding. Open our hearts, minds, eyes, ears, and spirit to receive, understand, see, apply, honour, and hear the truth of Your word, in Jesus’ name, Amen.
12 Then Joshua spoke to Yahweh in the day when Yahweh delivered up the Amorites before the children of Israel. He said in the sight of Israel, “Sun, stand still on Gibeon! You, moon, stop in the valley of Aijalon!” 13 The sun stood still, and the moon stayed until the nation had avenged themselves of their enemies. Isn’t this written in the book of Jashar? The sun stayed in the middle of the sky and didn’t hurry to go down about a whole day. 14 There was no day like that before it or after it, that Yahweh listened to the voice of a man; for Yahweh fought for Israel. (Read the whole chapter of Joshua 10 on your own).
When Adoni-Zedek, the king of Jerusalem heard about the conquest of Jericho and Ai, and the Gibeonites’ surrender to Joshua, they were afraid. Adoni-Zedek in Hebrews means lord of righteousness. This is the first mention of Jerusalem in the Bible. Gibeon was a great royal city, and its inhabitants were warriors. Adoni-Zedek formed a confederation with four more kings to attack Gibeon. This five city-king confederation and their fighting men surrounded Gibeon and attacked her. The Gibeonites reached out to Joshua at Gilgal and pleaded for his assistance to rescue them.
Without any hesitation, Joshua obliged and gathered his fighting men. The LORD reassured Joshua to be strong and courageous because He would ensure his victory. Joshua and his fighting men marched the whole night from Gilgal to Gibeon. The LORD confused the fighting men of the five city-king confederation until they could not wage war effectively. Joshua defeated them at Gibeon and chased them all the way to Beth Haran, Azekah, and Makkedah. The LORD rained hail hailstones from the sky which selectively landed on and killed Joshua’s enemies! Even the hailstones have eyes to see and log on to its target!
After defeating the Amorites, Joshua sought counsel from the LORD. In front of all the Israelites, Joshua commanded the sun to stand still in Gibeon and the moon to stand still in the valley of Ajalon! This was certainly a tall order! Immediately, the sun stood still over Gideon and the moon stood still over the valley of Ajalon until Joshua defeated all his enemies! The LORD gave Joshua one extra day to do battle. Wow, this is mind-blowing! One day became 2 days. God stood outside of the time-space domain and stopped the clock!
Earth stopped rotating
Joshua wanted more time to fight his battle and God stopped the clock for him! Isn’t this amazing? A 24-hour day became a 48-hour day.! The earth rotates around the sun once every 365 days. The earth also rotates on its own axis relative to the sun once every 24 hours. When the sun stood still, time was frozen, and the earth stopped rotating on its axis. God stopped the earth’s rotation for 24 hours.
How big is your God?
We serve a great and mighty God who created the heavens and the earth in six days. Jesus Christ, who is fully God and fully man, fed thousands with 5 miserable loaves of bread and 2 tiny little fish, calmed the storm, walked on water, changed water into wine, healed the sick, and raised the dead to life. Our Almighty God is omnipotent, omnipresent, and omniscient. There is nothing that He cannot do to the universe that He created. He is beyond time, beyond space, and beyond matter. He is the name above all names. All glory, honour, and praise belonged to Him.
How big is your faith?
Do you believe in the God of the Bible? Joshua had faith when he commanded the sun to stand still in front of all the Israelites. Imagine what would have happened if the sun did not stand still after his prayer! Faith is the key to unlocking the power of prayer. If you have faith as small as a tiny mustard seed, you can even move mountains, Matthew 17:20. Without faith, it is impossible to please God, Hebrews 11:6.
Matthew 17:20, He said to them, “Because of your unbelief. For most certainly I tell you, if you have faith as a grain of mustard seed, you will tell this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it will move, and nothing will be impossible for you
Without faith it is impossible to be well pleasing to him, for he who comes to God must believe that he exists and that he is a rewarder of those who seek him.
Heavenly Father, we acknowledge that You are a great and mighty God and there is no other God apart from You. We acknowledge that You are the only true and the living God of the Bible. We believe that You created the heavens and the earth in six days. We believe that nothing is impossible for You. We bring all our needs before You for healing, restoration, and a miracle. We bring all our battles before You and seek victory over them. We pray that You will increase our faith, subdue our enemies, and train us up to be prayer warriors, in Jesus’ name, Amen.
35 Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Could oppression, or anguish, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword? 36 Even as it is written, “For your sake we are killed all day long. We were accounted as sheep for the slaughter.”, Psalm 44:22. 37 No, in all these things, we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. 38 For I am persuaded that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor things present, nor things to come, nor powers, 39 nor height, nor depth, nor any other created thing will be able to separate us from God’s love which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.
Romans 8: 36-39
Paul formulated and answered his own rhetorical question and for our benefit. He asked his audience and us, can anything separate us from the love of Christ? What things? He went on to name some of the things, oppression, anguish, persecution, famine, nakedness, danger, and even martyrdom. These are the trials and sufferings we faced in life as Christians. What about wars, accidents, and natural disasters like landslides, floods, earthquakes, typhoons, hurricanes, cyclones, volcano eruptions, etc? When such things happened to us, does it mean that He did not love us? These are the things that Paul himself went through in his life. He was persecuted mercilessly by the Jewish leaders from day one and eventually faced martyrdom at the hand of Nero, yet he never even once doubted the love of Christ.
Paul went on to name even more things. What about death, life, angels, demons, present things, future things, powerful things, heights, depths, or any other created things? Can these separate us from the love of Christ? Paul’s answer? Nothing! No way! By no means!
For God so loved the world, that He gave His one and only Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish, but have eternal life
Go back to the cross whenever you begin to doubt the love of Christ for you. Jesus died for you and me on the cross to pay the penalty for our sins for us. This is how much Christ loved us. He died so that we can live. There is no greater love than to lay down one’s for another. Yet, Jesus died for you and me when we were still sinners and did not love Him. God loved you and me with an everlasting love.
Yahweh appeared of old to me, saying, “Yes, I have loved you with an everlasting love. Therefore I have drawn you with loving-kindness”
Right now, we are witnessing a brutal war in Ukraine, entering into its ninth month. Does this mean that Christ do not love the Ukrainian Christians? By no means! Christ loved the Ukrainians just as much as He loved everyone everywhere in the world. He died on the cross for everyone irrespective of race, religion, custom, creed, geography, or pedigree. God is a God of love.
Be careful of what you hear on the pulpit or read from the internet. Countercheck everything you hear or read with scripture and come to the correct and balanced conclusion.
Do not blindly believe and follow someone’s opinion hook, line, and sinker, without counterchecking with scripture. I was once following a Bible teacher on the internet, but when he kept on saying that God is not a God of love, I stopped following him!
Heavenly Father, thank You for speaking to us today right out of scripture. Thank You for your agape love for us. Thank You that while we were still sinners, You died for us. Thank You for doing something for us that we will never be able to do for ourselves. You paid the debt of sin for us on the cross which we will never be able to pay. Thank You for the truth that nothing can ever separate us from Your love, in Jesus’ name. Amen.