Friday, February 3, 2017
The book of Revelation, as stated in my last blog is a book for our day and time – 2017. It is a unique book, in that all of the other bible books culminate in it. It is a composite of many of the preceding books, especially the book of Daniel, and others that specifically have to do with end time prophecy.
Each book of the bible is broken up into segments called chapters; within each chapter are smaller segments called verses. Usually a reference of scripture is broken down accordingly: the name of the book (Revelation); chapter number (1), separated by a colon (:), followed by a numbered verse (1).
Example: Revelation 1:1 refers to the book of Revelation, the first chapter and the very first verse, which actually reads: “The Revelation of Jesus Christ, which God gave Him to show His servants – things which must shortly take place. And He sent and signified it by His angel to His servant John…” Although this book deals with a great deal of symbolism, yet there are many things that should be taken at face value. This quotation is an example of that reality.
The book of Revelation is a book about Jesus Christ designed to help the reader better understand who Christ is and how He has been present throughout the entire history of the Bible. So, when we read this verse, it is actually saying that God, the Father, gave to Jesus Christ this message found in the book of Revelation; Christ in turn, gave the message to an angel (messenger), who, in turn gave it to the Apostle John to write down, for others to read. That is what that verse means, in its simplest terms.
Additionally, this book is filled with “sanctuary” language, a language that is unique to the Old Testament and the rituals that surrounded their way of worshipping the Creator God. We shall address that in our next blog.
There are several repeating numbers to be found in this book, for example:
1) The seven churches = Ephesus, Smyrna, Pergamos, Thyatira, Sardis, Philadelphia, and Laodicea
2) The seven Spirits = Perfection of the one Holy Spirit
3) The seven golden candlesticks = The churches
4) The seven stars = Angels (messengers)
5) The seven seals = Segments of history at different times
6) The seven angels = A set of ‘messengers’ who have been assigned to each of the seven churches
7) The seven trumpets = A repeat and enlargement explanation of the same periods of history
8) The seven heads = Different kingdoms that would rule during these time periods
9) The seven last plagues = The punishments to be poured out upon the earth at end of this earth’s period.
10) The seven kings = Rulers of the seven kingdoms mentioned earlier
Other Repeating Numbers:
1) Four beasts = Four creatures that abide by the throne of God
2) Four and twenty elders = A special group of saints, who share the throne room with God
3) Four angels = Angels assigned to the different directions – north, south, east and west
4) An hundred and forty and four thousand = A symbolic number which represent the saved of the earth, when Jesus returns
5) The seven angels = These administer the seven last plagues
6) Third part=A symbolic term that describes the different portions of the earth, God’s people, etc.
7) Seven heads and ten horns = Identifying characteristics of the seducer/deceiver/ opposer of God
There are so very many aspects to the book of Revelation, but please don’t fear. For every question there is an answer. If you think that you would be interested in studying the book of Revelation, beyond my “Times Series”, simply click on the BIBLE STUDY link.
Please remember this one thing; the book of Revelation is a love story to God’s church. Although there are seven Asian churches named in the book, yet, all represent only one church at seven periods of time, beginning immediately after the Messiah left, until the time in which we live. Each church has particular characteristics that are seen in God’s chosen people – His ONE church, during those seven correlating time periods outlined in history; and although some of the time frames overlap, it still drives home the understanding of history; the progress of the Christian church and God’s intent for the world.
In this series, we shall seek to confine ourselves to the four time periods, as pointed out in Revelation 14:6-11 and Revelation 18:1-4.
Until next time, stay encouraged.
Bible Study Link: http://bit.ly/2k7LVQN
Wednesday, February 1, 2017
In my last blog, I mentioned the ‘about face’, which I had experienced, and stated that I was extremely concerned about sharing some messages concerning “time”. Consider this blog, as the beginning of those aforementioned messages. I plan to take my time (no pun intended), with this series, in an effort to be as thorough as possible, because despite the fact that each of us is on a journey, we are not traveling at the same speed. I pray not to leave anyone behind.
The “time” messages that I shall share with you are based on the teachings found in the Holy Bible. I realize that I am addressing people from many countries; therefore, there may be a different belief system. If you are not familiar with the Holy Scriptures, please allow me to give you a brief overview, of this divine book, in this post.
The bible is a collection of 66 books, written by 40 authors, which stretch over a period of about 1500 - 2000 years. It is broken into two sections called the Old and New Testaments. The Old Testament pours the foundation for the faith in the written word, in that, it explains and gives reason for the creation and existence of everything. It establishes all the key players in the universe and their roles in the life and interests of mankind.
For example, from the very first book of Genesis, we identify the divine beings responsible for the creation of the heavens and the earth, the atmosphere, sun, moon, stars, trees, plants, grass, animals, man and woman and every other living entity.
We also find a scoundrel, which seduces the woman (Eve) and causes her to ignore the explicit guidelines given to her and her husband (Adam), from the beginning. In this wayward act of rebellion on the part of the couple, they lost the dominion over the earth, which God had given to them; it was yielded to the deceiver and sin entered the world (sin - meaning: the transgression of the law).
The Creator God, out of love and compassion for the couple, offers the hope of redemption from sin, through its destruction, along with the deceiver. God then seals the promise with a covenant of blood. God chooses a man from among the children of Adam and eve, and from his descendants a nation of people ascends to the position of “the keepers of God’s covenant”. That nation becomes central to the teachings of the Old Testament and to them are committed the various prophecies that point to the coming Messiah/Savior, so that people would know what to look for and would not be deceived, when He arrived; but unfortunately, they were.
The New Testament introduces the physical arrival of the divine Savior, who was both human and divine and was promised in the Old Testament. In His life, He fulfills all of the prophecies predicted in the Old Testament that pointed to His coming and His mission while on earth.
Additionally, we find in the New Testament, other accounts of the establishment of Judo-Christianity as given by the inspiration of the divine Spirit. We read of the accounts of the struggling Christians, their persecution, their evangelism of the then known world, prophecies for the future of Christians and humanity in general, and the ultimate redemption of all who will accept Jesus (Yashua), as their Savior.
Among the 66 books that comprise the Holy Bible is the book of Revelation; the very last book in the set. The very name of the book is telling – Revelation – to reveal or make known. This book carries a threefold blessing in it, something that no other book of the bible has. The invitation to read it says: “Blessed (or happy) is he that readeth, and they that hear the words of this prophecy, and keep those things which are written therein: for the time is at hand.” Revelation 1:3 – King James Version
Note the last statement of the threefold blessing: “for the time is at hand.” Thus we can sense an urgency for the need to investigate the “Times Series”.
With this basic foundation, we shall proceed, in the next several blog presentations, to discover the meanings of the “times”. Until then, be very blessed or happy.
Study Link: http://bit.ly/2k7LVQN
Monday, January 30, 2017
Can you believe how quickly the time is passing by? Already, we’re at the end of January, with the cold winds of February, whistling around the corner, in some places, but not here.
I don’t know if it’s me; but I have heard that the older you get the slower you move, which results in your using more time to get things done, and thereby perceiving that time is rushing on. Then there is the philosophy that the earth has sped up and that things really are moving faster than normal. However, I’m inclined to believe that because there are so many ways to reach out and communicate with others, that a person just uses up their time socializing, rather than accomplishing some of the other things listed on their “to do list”.
Either way, the first month of the year has passed. It could result in a month of mourning for the loss of a dignified president of the USA, or a month of mourning for a self-engrossed one. Alright! I’ll stop being political (for a moment)! LOL
So why am I concerned about time? Well, time is what life is made of; it can also determine how much wealth can be accumulated within its confines, but mostly I’m concerned as an advent Christian about the readiness of my own life and of those who fall beneath my influence, in any wise. For those of you who are trying to figure out what an advent Christian is, it is one who believes in a literal second coming of Jesus in the clouds of heaven, to redeem His people.
There are four basic time messages with which I am concerned that are pertinent to this day and time. I shall list them for clarity’s sake.
1. The Christian church is living in a time of divine judgment, not sinners. If there ever was a time that the Christian believer should draw close to God; return to Bible based teachings; to put known sin out of his or her life and to seek the well-being of others, it is now.
2. There has been such a watering down of Christianity; of allowing the entry of pagan practices into the very heart of the church and a breaking down of moral principles, whereby one can live any way one wishes and still proclaim unity with Christ. However, it is totally against the will of God.
3. Also, I am under solemn obligation to tell others that there is a power that has arisen and is continuing to excel, who will soon demand worship from every person under heaven. For one to worship this particular power is to totally rebel against God’s commandments. It truly is a life and death matter.
4. And lastly, it is time for honest Christians to forsake those places of worship, which do not honor God totally. Failure to forsake those places of worship will result in their becoming something other than they wish to become and it will jeopardize their salvation.
Now, how am I to undertake the proclamation of these four messages of warning? We shall see in the upcoming blogs.
It has come full circle to me that I am, to spend less time on the mundane things of this world; to show fewer interests in politics, except where they directly interface with these four messages; and to share the beauty of the gospel, at every given opportunity. To some of you, it may be offensive; to others, it may come as a breath of fresh air; and still to others, it may very well answer many of the questions that you’ve been asking, but no one is addressing. Some of you may even stop reading. I do not know.
What I do know is that time is quickly passing by; God has given me an opportunity to share His word via this blog and I don’t know how much longer this opportunity will last. Therefore, prepare to hold on to your chairs, because some things may just blow you away.
I learned, from my dear departed mother that it is better to eat too much, than to say too much. Therefore, I shall end this discourse. However, keep reading future posts; I’m sure you will find much edification. Peace be with you for now.
More: My Death Poem