Date: 03/01/2017 Issue Number: 344
Jonah was called to preach the word of warning to the city of Nineveh, but he ran in the opposite direction. He knew that God was compassionate and suspected that the city might repent and be spared. He did not want the city to be spared, because he knew that the Assyrians would eventually conquer Israel.
While on the ship to Tarshish (Spain), God sent a storm that threatened to sink the ship. Jonah 1:7 then says,
7 And each man said to his mate, “Come, let us cast lots so we may learn on whose account this…
Date: 02/01/2017 Issue Number: 343
The prophet Jonah is perhaps the most complex of all the biblical prophets. His prophecies—and he himself—can be viewed on multiple levels. He is a prophetic type of Israel, of the Church, and of Christ in both of His comings on earth.
Jonah might be compared to Isaiah in that his revelation of the death of Christ is clearly set forth, even as seen in Isaiah 53. The difference is that Jonah’s name means dove, and so he fulfills the prophecy in the law of cleansing lepers in Lev. 14, whereas Isaia…
Date: 01/01/2017 Issue Number: 342
After giving us two legal principles to consider in regard to the transmission of holiness, the prophet Haggai then gives the application of these truths to the people of his time. Haggai 2:15-17 says,
15 “But now, do consider from this day [today] onward [mahal, “upward, or backward”]: before one stone was placed on another in the temple of the Lord, 16 from that time when one came to a grain heap of twenty measures, there would be only ten; and when one came to the wine vat to draw fifty measur…
Date: 12/01/2016 Issue Number: 341
Notice for reader: This issue has a lot of the same content as issue #340, although there are some changes made throughout.
Haggai 2:6-8 says,
6 For thus says the Lord of hosts, “Once more in a little while, I am going to shake the heavens and the earth, the sea also and the dry land. 7 And I will shake all the nations; and they will come with the wealth of all the nations; and I will fill this house with glory,” says the Lord of hosts. 8 “The silver is Mine, and the gold is Mine,” …
Date: 11/01/2016 Issue Number: 340
Haggai 2:6-8 says,
6 For thus says the Lord of hosts, “Once more in a little while, I am going to shake the heavens and the earth, the sea also and the dry land. 7 And I will shake all the nations; and they will come with the wealth of all the nations; and I will fill this house with glory,” says the Lord of hosts. 8 “The silver is Mine, and the gold is Mine,” declares the Lord of hosts…
As we showed earlier, Haggai prophesied during the time of the Persian empire, which God raised …
Date: 10/01/2016 Issue Number: 339
Haggai 2:1 says,
1 On the twenty-first of the seventh month, the word of the Lord came by Haggai the prophet saying…
This word came to Haggai about seven weeks after his first word. Hag. 1:1 dates the beginning of his revelation as the first day of the sixth month, and that word stirred up the people. They met to start work on the 24th day of the same month (Hag. 1:15), and it took a week to set up the altar of burnt offering.
Ezra 3:6 tells us,
6 From the first day of the seventh month they began to off…
Date: 09/01/2016 Issue Number: 338
Haggai 1:6 implies that the people were suffering crop failures because they had lost interest in rebuilding the temple in Jerusalem.
6 You have sown much, but harvest little; you eat, but there is not enough to be satisfied; you drink, but there is not enough to become drunk; you put on clothing, but no one is warm enough; and he who earns, earns wages to put into a purse with holes.”
What was the reasoning behind this prophetic statement? What does building the temple have to do with prosperity and the la…
Date: 08/01/2016 Issue Number: 337
The prophet Haggai ministered in Jerusalem after the Babylonian captivity while Zerubbabel was the governor. His main focus and calling was to give the word of the Lord to those constructing the second temple. But, as we will see, his prophecies had applications far beyond his time, and his revelation was actually of a greater temple that was to be built out of living stones.
The first appearance of Christ laid the foundations of this spiritual temple, described in Eph. 2:20-22,
20 having been built upon the foun…
Date: 07/01/2016 Issue Number: 336
After giving us the message from God that we will be blessed if we “bring the whole tithe into the storehouse,” the prophet records the popular objection that he faced in his day. Malachi 3:13-15 says,
13 “Your words have been arrogant against Me,” says the Lord. “Yet you say, ‘What have we spoken against Thee?’ 14 “You have said, ‘It is vain to serve God; and what profit is it that we have kept His charge, and that we have walked in mourning before the Lord of…
Date: 06/01/2016 Issue Number: 335
What is the divine purpose in refining and purifying the so-called “sons of Levi” in Malachi 3:3? The prophet tells us the reason: “so that they may present to the Lord offerings in righteousness.”
Why is this so important? The next verse tells us:
4 Then the offering of Judah and Jerusalem will be pleasing to the Lord, as in the days of old and as in former years.
Apart from priestly integrity (and real faith), their offerings carry no weight with God. Offerings are valued according to t…
Date: 05/01/2016 Issue Number: 334
Malachi links the third and fourth messengers in a special relationship. The third prepares the way for the fourth. The fourth is the Messiah Himself and the mediator of the New Covenant.
The last part of Mal. 3:1 says, “the messenger of the covenant, in whom you delight, behold He is coming.” Both the people and the priests were desirous of the Messiah’s coming. The thought was delightful, but only because they did not truly understand His mission. The prophet then foretells the mission of both …
Date: 04/01/2016 Issue Number: 333
Two Wrong Views of the Law
After criticizing the priests for their partiality and their unjust marriage policies, the prophet says in Mal. 2:17,
17 You have wearied the Lord with your words. Yet you say, “How have we wearied Him?” In that you say, “Everyone who does evil is good in the sight of the Lord, and He delights in them,” or “Where is the God of Justice?”
The prophet implies that the priests did not agree with his assessment. Instead, they argued with him and with Go…