All posts by Eddie

Back in 1975, I was basically an atheist or agnostic. I did not believe in God and generally held the belief that religion was invented by man in order to keep the people in line, make money, and provide comfort to those who thought too much about death. I believed religion came from superstition and interpretation of natural events. But, my wife got tired of me telling her how "wrong" she was about things. So, I started to read the Bible to prove her wrong. It was in this intense study that I met Jesus, and the prophets. I began to understand things that were different from what I had heard. I asked Jesus to come into my life and I have not stopped studying since, except for about a 10 year period when I left God....but He never left me...

Sanctification-A Lost Bible Teaching-Part 1

Sanctification is a Bible Doctrine

*Erroneous theories of sanctification, also, springing from neglect or rejection of the divine law, have a prominent place in the religious movements of the day. These theories are both false in doctrine and dangerous in practical results; and the fact that they are so generally finding favor renders it doubly essential that all have a clear understanding of what the Scriptures teach upon this point.

True sanctification is a Bible doctrine. The apostle Paul, in his letter to the Thessalonian church, declares:

“This is the will of God, even your sanctification.” And he prays: “The very God of peace sanctify you wholly.”

1 Thessalonians 4:3; 5:23.

The Bible clearly teaches what sanctification is and how it is to be attained. The Saviour prayed for His disciples:

“Sanctify them through Thy truth: Thy word is truth.”

John 17:17.

And Paul teaches that believers are to be

“sanctified by the Holy Ghost.”

Romans 15:16.

What is the work of the Holy Spirit? Jesus told His disciples:

“When He, the Spirit of truth, is come, He will guide you into all truth.”

John 16:13.

And the psalmist says:

“Thy law is the truth.”

Psalm 119:42

By the word and the Spirit of God are opened to men the great principles of righteousness embodied in His law. And since the law of God is

“holy, and just, and good,”

Romans 7:12

a transcript of the divine perfection, it follows that a character formed by obedience to that law will be holy. Christ is a perfect example of such a character. He says:

“I have kept My Father’s commandments.” “I do always those things that please Him.”

John 15:10; 8:29.

The followers of Christ are to become like Him—by the grace of God to form characters in harmony with the principles of His holy law. This is Bible sanctification.

This work can be accomplished only through faith in Christ, by the power of the indwelling Spirit of God. Paul admonishes believers:

“Work out your own salvation with fear and trembling. For it is God which worketh in you both to will and to do of His good pleasure.” Philippians 2:12, 13.

The Christian will feel the promptings of sin, but he will maintain a constant warfare against it. Here is where Christ’s help is needed. Human weakness becomes united to divine strength, and faith exclaims:

“Thanks be to God, which giveth us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.”

1 Corinthians 15:57.

Sanctification is Progressive

The Scriptures plainly show that the work of sanctification is progressive. When in conversion the sinner finds peace with God through the blood of the atonement, the Christian life has but just begun. Now he is to

“go on unto perfection;”

Hebrews 6:1

to grow up “unto the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ.”

Ephesians 4:13

Says the apostle Paul:

“This one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto those things which are before, I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus.”

Philippians 3:13, 14.

And Peter sets before us the steps by which Bible sanctification is to be attained:

“Giving all diligence, add to your faith virtue; and to virtue knowledge; and to knowledge temperance; and to temperance patience; and to patience godliness; and to godliness brotherly kindness; and to brotherly kindness charity. . . . If ye do these things, ye shall never fall.”

2 Peter 1:5-10.

Examples of Sanctification

Those who experience the sanctification of the Bible will manifest a spirit of humility. Like Moses, they have had a view of the awful majesty of holiness, and they see their own unworthiness in contrast with the purity and exalted perfection of the Infinite One.

The prophet Daniel was an example of true sanctification. His long life was filled up with noble service for his Master. He was a man “greatly beloved” (Daniel 10:11) of Heaven. Yet instead of claiming to be pure and holy, this honored prophet identified himself with the really sinful of Israel as he pleaded before God in behalf of his people:

“We do not present our supplications before Thee for our righteousness, but for Thy great mercies.” “We have sinned, we have done wickedly.”

He declares:

“I was speaking, and praying, and confessing my sin and the sin of my people.” And when at a later time the Son of God appeared, to give  him instruction, Daniel says: “My comeliness was turned in me into corruption, and I retained no strength.”

Daniel 9:18, 15, 20; 10:8.

When Job heard the voice of the Lord out of the whirlwind, he exclaimed:

“I abhor myself, and repent in dust and ashes.”

Job 42:6.0

It was when Isaiah saw the glory of the Lord, and heard the cherubim crying,

“Holy, holy, holy, is the Lord of hosts,” that he cried out, “Woe is me! for I am undone.”

Isaiah 6:3, 5.

Paul, after he was caught up into the third heaven and heard things which it was not possible for a man to utter, speaks of himself as

“less than the least of all saints.”

2 Corinthians 12:2-4, margin; Ephesians 3:8.

It was the beloved John, who leaned on Jesus’ breast and beheld His glory, that

fell as one dead before the feet of the angel.

Revelation 1:17.

No Sanctification Without the Cross

There can be no self-exaltation, no boastful claim to freedom from sin, on the part of those who walk in the shadow of Calvary’s cross. They feel that it was their sin which caused the agony that broke the heart of the Son of God, and this thought will lead them to self-abasement. Those who live nearest to Jesus discern most clearly the frailty and sinfulness of humanity, and their only hope is in the merit of a crucified and risen Saviour.

The Easy Religion

The sanctification now gaining prominence in the religious world carries with it a spirit of self-exaltation and a disregard for the law of God that mark it as foreign to the religion of the Bible. Its advocates teach that sanctification is an instantaneous work, by which, through faith alone, they attain to perfect holiness. “Only believe,” say they, “and the blessing is yours.” No further effort on the part of the receiver is supposed to be required. At the same time they deny the authority of the law of God, urging that they are released from obligation to keep the commandments. But is it possible for men to be holy, in accord with the will and character of God, without coming into harmony with the principles which are an expression of His nature and will, and which show what is well pleasing to Him?

The desire for an easy religion that requires no striving, no self-denial, no divorce from the follies of the world, has made the doctrine of faith, and faith only, a popular doctrine; but what saith the word of God? Says the apostle James:

“What doth it profit, my brethren, though a man say he hath faith, and have not works? can faith save him? . . . Wilt thou know, O vain man, that faith without works is dead? Was not Abraham our father justified by works, when he had offered Isaac his son upon the altar? Seest thou how faith wrought with his works, and by works was faith made perfect? . . . Ye see then how that by works a man is justified, and not by faith only.”

James 2:14-24.

The testimony of the word of God is against this ensnaring doctrine of faith without works. It is not faith that claims the favor of Heaven without complying with the conditions upon which mercy is to be granted, it is presumption; for genuine faith has its foundation in the promises and provisions of the Scriptures.

Let none deceive themselves with the belief that they can become holy while willfully violating one of God’s requirements. The commission of a known sin silences the witnessing voice of the Spirit and separates the soul from God.

“Sin is the transgression of the law.”

1 John 3:4

And “whosoever sinneth [transgresseth the law] hath not seen Him, neither known Him.”

1 John 3:6. 

Though John in his epistles dwells so fully upon love, yet he does not hesitate to reveal the true character of that class who claim to be sanctified while living in transgression of the law of God.

“He that saith, I know Him, and keepeth not His commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him. But whoso keepeth His word, in him verily is the love of God perfected.”

1 John 2:4, 5.

Here is the test of every man’s profession. We cannot accord holiness to any man without bringing him to the measurement of God’s only standard of holiness in heaven and in earth. If men feel no weight of the moral law, if they belittle and make light of God’s precepts, if they break one of the least of these commandments, and teach men so, they shall be of no esteem in the sight of Heaven, and we may know that their claims are without foundation.

Cannot Claim to be Without Sin

And the claim to be without sin is, in itself, evidence that he who makes this claim is far from holy. It is because he has no true conception of the infinite purity and holiness of God or of what they must become who shall be in harmony with His character; because he has no true conception of the purity and exalted loveliness of Jesus, and the malignity and evil of sin, that man can regard himself as holy. The greater the distance between himself and Christ, and the more inadequate his conceptions of the divine character and requirements, the more righteous he appears in his own eyes.

*Great Controversy, p.469-473

In part 2, we will discuss how Bible sanctification as set forth in the Scriptures embraces the entire being—spirit, soul, and body.

The Best Comfort Regarding Death

God Compares Death to Sleep

None of the Bible writers believed that death is the time when the saints go to their reward in heaven.  They all looked forward to the resurrection when the reward would be given to all those who trust in Jesus. Jesus said,

“Behold I COME quickly; and My REWARD  is WITH me, to give every man according as his work shall be.”

Revelation 22:12. 

The holy men of the Old Testament did not contradict the writers of the New Testament:

“Behold the Lord God will come…Behold His reward is with Him.”

Isaiah 40:10,

Well-meaning people have used a few verses out of context to contradict the multitude of texts which illustrate death is compared to sleep.

God, the only one who knows everything—including what death is like–tells us over and over in both the Old and New Testament that death is a “sleep.” Note these consistent statements:

Writing under inspiration,

The Psalmist David prayed to God lest he “SLEEP the SLEEP of Death.”

Psalm 13:3

“Now shall I SLEEP in the dust; and thou shalt seek me in the morning, but I shall not be.”

Job 7:21

“Them that SLEEP in the dust of the earth shall awake, some to everlasting life and some to shame and everlasting contempt.”

Daniel 12:2

(Note the reference to the two resurrections. The first is for those “dead in Christ.” The second one is for the rest of the dead and the final judgment where they will be dead forever (2nd death)

“Blessed and holy is he who has part in the FIRST RESURRECTION. Over such the SECOND DEATH has no power.”

Revelation 20:6 

“Now the days of David drew nigh that he should DIE…So David SLEPT with his fathers, and was buried.”

1 Kings 2: 1, 10

Miracles occurred when Jesus died on the cross:

“The earth quaked, and the rocks were split, and the graves were opened; and many bodies of the saints who had fallen ASLEEP were raised; and coming out of the graves after His resurrection, they went into the holy city and appeared to many.”

Matthew 27: 51-53

“AWAKE thou that SLEEPEST, and arise from the dead.”

Ephesians 5:14

When Stephen was stoned to death as the first Christian martyr, the Bible says,

“he fell ASLEEP.”

Acts 7:60

These are but a few of many examples from such diverse Bible writers as David, Job, Matthew, and Paul, and others who consistently speak of death as a “sleep.” Let’s hear and example from our Lord’s own lips.

One day Jesus received news that His friend Lazarus was very sick. After waiting two days before going to Lazarus, Jesus said:

“Our friend Lazarus has fallen ASLEEP; but I go, that I may AWAKEN him out of SLEEP.’ The disciples therefore (knowing how helpful bed rest is to sick people) said to Him, ‘Lord, if he has fallen asleep, he will recover.’ Now Jesus had spoken of his DEATH, but they thought that He was speaking of literal sleep. Then Jesus therefore said to them plainly, ‘Lararus is DEAD.”

John 11-11-14 NASB

Jesus used the same comparison of death to sleep in regard to the daughter of Jairus, whom he miraculously raised from the dead.

“He said to them, ‘Make room, for the girl is not dead, but sleeping.'” Matthew 9:24. See also Mark 5:39, Luke 8:52

The words of the Master Himself should settle the matter beyond all debate.

Speaking of death as a sleep is an appropriate, beautiful metaphor. But when the Word of God uses that term so consistently, it becomes more than a convenient euphemism for an unpleasant subject. For all who take the Bible seriously, it becomes FACT. And death itself becomes nothing to fear: It’s comforting to realize that just as drowsy slumber comes at the end of day, so death quiet, restful sleep comes at the end of life.

Psychiatrists know that death holds a terror for many people. But “men fear death as children fear the dark”—because it is unknown. Once we know the truth about death, that it’s simply a sleep without consciousness of time, its horror is dispelled.

If you were told by the Lord Himself to be comforted by certain words about death, would you listen? Would it be that your loved one is enjoying the streets of gold? Would your loved ones miss you? Of course they would, but is that heaven? God has a better plan! We will all see the Lord and go to heaven at the same time!

Listen to the words written by Paul under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit. But notice that he ends his description of the second coming with the encouragement to get our comfort from his words:

“For the Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of an archangel, and with the trumpet of God. And the dead (sleeping) in Christ will rise first. Then we who are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And thus we shall always be with the Lord. THEREFORE COMFORT ONE ANOTHER WITH THESE WORDS.”

1 Thessalonians 4:16-18

What words are are to be comforting to us who mourn the death of a beloved?  Is it that they have gone to heaven and are looking down on us?  No!  The words that are to comfort us is that Jesus is coming!  He will resurrect us, not matter how long we have been sleeping the slumber of death.  And then there will be a reunion of all those who died “in Christ.”  Then we will receive immortality and new bodies:

Behold, I tell you a mystery: We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed— in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet. For the trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changedFor this corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal must put on immortality. So when this corruptible has put on incorruption, and this mortal has put on immortality, then shall be brought to pass the saying that is written: “Death is swallowed up in victory.”[

1 Corinthians 15: 51-54

I once heard a preacher trying to comfort the mother and father of a young man who died suddenly.  He said, their son was in heaven enjoying eternal youth and that “Death was swallowed up in victory.” But, look closely at how the pastor took this portion of scripture totally out of context.  It is only when Jesus returns and the dead in Christ are resurrected that this saying that is written can be proclaimed.

We cannot claim that Death is swallowed up in victory until Jesus returns:

 The last enemy that will be destroyed is death

1 Corinthians 15: 26

Recently, I had surgery and was put under anesthesia. The doctor told me that they were administering the drug to put me asleep. That was the last thing I remembered. It seemed like a nanosecond had passed before the nurse was waking me up, but yet it had been a couple of hours.

The sleep of death is but for a second.  The next thing a Christian will see in their resurrected body is the Lord returning in the clouds of heaven to take us to where he is. Here are the words Jesus used to comfort his disciples.  May it comfort us too.  May it give us the longing to Jesus come again soon

“Let not your heart be troubled; you believe in God, believe also in Me.  In My Father’s house are many mansions; if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to Myself; that where I am, there you may be also.

John 14: 1-3

“Surely I am coming quickly.” Amen. Even so, come, Lord Jesus!

Revelation 22:20

Comfort one another with these words….

The New Definition of Tolerance and The Christian

A predominant word used in today’s politics and legal circles is “tolerance.” Tolerance is defined as:

“the ability or willingness to tolerate something, in particular, the existence of opinions or behavior that one does not necessarily agree with.

What does it mean to”tolerate something?” It means to:

allow the existence, occurrence, or practice of (something that one does not necessarily like or agree with) without interference.”

To tolerate different opinions should be in the heart of every American who understands that this country arose from the ashes of religious and civil intolerance in Europe.  The desire of the settlers of America was to create a nation of tolerance and acceptance because of their experience with intolerance in the “old country”.

During the Reformation era, as the Bible became more and more the source of faith for individual believers. it conflicted with the teachings of the powerful church in Europe and persecution soon followed. The followers of Jesus and the Bible during these tough times desired freedom of conscience and to worship without being claimed a heretic and facing death.   But, the ruling class and the powerful Roman Catholic church forbid any thoughts different than its own dogma and tradition.  Throughout, its history, the papacy leveraged the state to enforce its will upon the masses.  Millions died who were not “tolerated” by the church/state.  These people were not “allowed to exist” because of their Biblical views.  The history of persecution and death from the papacy over the controversy of who should be the final source of truth (Jesus or the Pope) is the classic definition of intolerance.  Millions of dissenters from the church were destroyed because the Pope did not want them to exist.

“From the birth of Popery in 606 AD to the present time, it is estimated by careful and credible historians, that more than fifty millions of the human family, have been slaughtered for the crime of heresy by popish persecutors, an average of more than forty thousand religious murders for every year of the existence of popery.”

— “History of Romanism,” pp. 541, 542. New York: 1871.

The founders of America wanted a nation without a pope or a king.  Why?  Because they desired all views to be tolerated or allowed to exist, particularly Christian Biblical views.  

Of course, to have a nation like this, the Christians would have to live by their own words and “tolerate” other worldviews they did not agree with and allow their existence and practice in this new nation.


Does Disagreement With Someone’s Religion or World View Necessarily Mean They are Intolerant?

If we understand the word “intolerant” and the history of “intolerance” we know the answer to this question to be “No.” The deciding factor to turning the answer into a “Yes” is the actions taken by those with the power to force the dissenter to either not exist or to persecute them in some way.

The Christian who believes that Jesus is the only truth and does not accept a different view is not intolerant in their beliefs any more than the Muslim who feels the same way about Mohammed, but it becomes intolerance when one of the groups persecutes the other.

The apostle Paul expressed the concept of “tolerance” in the great love chapter of 1 Corinthians 13 when he said,

“Love suffers long and is kind….endures all things.”

1 Corinthians 13: 4,7

To disagree with someone’s religion or political views is not intolerance unless they persecute. Without a doubt, a follower of Christ must be tolerant, but at the same time, there is put within the heart of the Christian to make known the truth as found in Christ.

“♦…today a new definition of tolerance is systematically being foisted upon the minds of all people.  As an example, Thomas A Lambda Chi Alpha fraternity, states, ‘The definition of new tolerance is that every individual’s beliefs, lifestyle, and perception of truth claims are equal…Your beliefs and my beliefs are equal, and all truth is relative.”

So the modern historically uninformed college student who is encouraged to erase and rewrite “bad history,”  seeks to adopt an exaggerated form of tolerance where all philosophies and word views are equal. I can’t help but think of the words of a classic rock song,

“Nobody’s right if everybody’s wrong.”-Buffalo Springfield, For What It’s Worth.”

It the context of an equal and relative truth these lyrics could also read,

Nobody’s wrong if everybody’s right.

But, here is the immediate danger in this new definition of tolerance….the real truth, becomes lost or eliminated if we obtain truth by our feelings and whatever we desire it to be.  Under this thinking of relative truth, everybody is right!

♦The misconception about relative truth assumes that truth is inclusive, that it gathers under its wings claims that oppose each other. The fact, however, is that all truth is exclusive---at least to some degree---for it must exclude as false that which is not true.

For instance, it is true that Washington D.C. is the capital city of the United State of America. This means that no other city in the United States is that country's capital. In fact, no other city on planet Earth or anywhere in the universe can lay legitimate claim to being the capital city of the United States. One city and one only fits the bill and that's Washington D.C.

Simply because just one city is the United States' capital does not mean that the people who affirm this truth are therefore intolerant.  They may like scores of other cities and even live in different cities themselves.  They may even live in different countries and prefer their country to America.  Accepting the exclusive truth claim about Washington D.C. does not make a person tolerant or intolerant---it simply makes him or her correct about what the capital city of the United States is.

The same is true about Christianity.  If the claims of the Christian faith are true---and many people accept them as true---these people are no more intolerant for their belief than those people who accept Washington D.C. as the United States capital. They are either correct or mistaken about how God has revealed Himself in the world.

The main problem with the all-inclusive view of truth is that it also stifles the follower of this philosophy to seek the truth. The Christian will tell you that the source of truth is found in God’s word and in the life of Jesus.  To test this or any other claimant of truth must have a starting place.  That origin of entry for truth must be historical with eyewitnesses accounts and proof that the truth works on a practical plain.

For more information, the study of different philosophical claims of different religions, click here: Will the Real God Please Stand Up?-An Overview

Jesus claimed,

I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.

John 14:6

He made many other claims. He clearly stated  that the Tanakh (Old Testament) was about Him:

You search the Scriptures, for in them you think you have eternal life; and these are they which testify of Me.

John 5:39

He explained to the uninformed and misunderstanding disciples how the Tanakh “testified of Him.”

Then He said to them, “These are the words which I spoke to you while I was still with you, that all things must be fulfilled which were written in the Law of Moses and the Prophets and the Psalms concerning Me. And He opened their understanding, that they might comprehend the Scriptures.

Luke 24: 44, 45

But many people are afraid to “Search the Scripture” to see if what He claims is true or not.  Why?  The only reason can be FEAR.

Fear of being wrong. Because of pride, people resist admission of having the wrong idea, philosophy, or worldview.

Fear of Change or lifestyle.  They reason their life won’t be as fun and enjoyable.

Fear of Accountability.  Things they practice may have consequences.

Fear of Losing Friends.  Accepting truth may push away friends and family.

It was these types of fears and misconceptions about tolerance that kept the people of Noah’s time from getting on the boat and saving their lives.  In the end, failing to pursue truth regardless of what one might think to be truth will keep many from eternal life as promised by God and Jesus Christ.

Nothing has changed since the days of Noah.  People continue to avoid pursuit of truth because of fear.

And as it was in the days of Noah, so it will be also in the days of the Son of Man:

Luke 17:6

To conclude this short discussion on tolerance and its relationship to truth, an appropriate story (from the book, Great Controversy) about the pursuit of truth comes from a man called Gaussen who was influenced by the prevailing truth of the day (18th and 19th century) i.e. rationalism.  It is defined as:

a belief or theory that opinions and actions should be based on reason and knowledge rather than on religious belief or emotional response.

But, he studied about Jesus and the prophecies…then his life changed.  He wanted to tell the adults in his part of the world about what he discovered in the Bible but found them resistant, so he taught the children to see if they could understand the information.  The results were unexpected.

Many today claim to be tolerant and have an open mind.  There is no human with a mind more open than a child.  Jesus knew this when he said,

“Assuredly, I say to you, unless you are converted and become as little children, you will by no means enter the kingdom of heaven.

Matthew 18:3

♦As he (Gaussen) pursued his investigation of the prophecies he arrived at the belief that the coming of the Lord was at hand.  Impressed with the solemnity and importance of this great truth, he desired to bring it before the people; but the popular belief that the prophecies of Daniel are mysteries and cannot be understood was a serious obstacle in his way.  He finally determined—as Farel—had done before him in evangelizing Geneva—to begin with the children, through whom he hoped to interest the parents.

“I desire this to be understood,” he afterward said, speaking of his object in this undertaking.  “it is not because of its small importance, but on the contrary because of its great value, that I wished to present it in this familiar form, and that I addressed it to the children. I desired to be heard, and I feared that I would not be if I addressed myself to the grown people first.”  “I determined, therefore, to go to the youngest, I gather an audience of children; if the group enlarges, if it is seen that they listen, are pleased, interested, that they understand and explain the subject, I am sure to have a second circle soon, and in their turn, grown people will see that it is worth their while to sit down and study.  When this is done, the cause is gained,” I. Gaussen, Daniel The Prophet, vol. 2, Preface

The effort was successful.  As he addressed the children, older persons came to listen.  The galleries of his church were filled with attentive hearers. Among them were men of rank and learning, and strangers and foreigners visiting Geneva, and thus the message was carried to other parts.

The understanding of God’s word is simple— provided the person is willing to pursue truth no matter where it leads and with an open mind free of preconceived ideas.  Fear will be replaced with joy and confidence.  But a person will never know unless they start…they will never receive from God if they desire their own pleasures.

You ask and do not receive, because you ask amiss, that you may spend it on your pleasures.

James 4:3

The new definition of tolerance (all ideas are equal and true and therefore should be accepted) is false.  To believe the truth found in God’s word and the exclusive claims of Christianity is not intolerance.   A true follower of Christ will demonstrate acceptance of the person in love but reject what they know to be false and dangerous to that person.  They will encourage the pursuit of truth out of love and no other reason.

In modern America, the country of religious freedom, it is the founders of tolerance (Followers of Jesus) who are now being forced through legal actions to accept the beliefs of people they know to be in error.  The courts want to control the beliefs of Christians regarding sex and their worldview. This is persecution. No other religion is being sued and harassed as are Christians.  So, I end with this question.  Who are the people who are intolerant?  Who hates those who don’t accept their beliefs? Who desires for the other group to not exist?

Blessed are you when men hate you, And when they exclude you, And revile you, and cast out your name as evil, For the Son of Man’s sake.

Luke 6:22

The world cannot hate you, but it hates Me because I testify of it that its works are evil

John 7:7

The New Evidence That Demands a Verdict, Josh McDowell




Common Misconceptions About Christianity-BLIND FAITH

“Grow up!  It is silly to believe in the man-in-the-sky  stuff!”

“Your belief is based on myths, the human need for comfort, and blind faith.”

“There is no evidence for your faith.”

How many times have Christians heard this?  In this series, we are going to explore the misconceptions associated with Christianity and the reasons and evidence for belief in Jesus Christ.

I have learned over the 40 years, as a believer in Jesus, that people who make derogatory statements like the ones above are simply uninformed. But even if they are informed, it does not guarantee an acceptance of the truth about Jesus and the word of God.

Benjamin Warfield from Princeton University put it this way,

“We are not absurdly arguing that *Apologetics has in itself the power to make a man a Christian or to conquer the world to Christ. Only the Spirit of Life can communicate life to a dead soul….But we are arguing that faith is, in all its exercises alike, a form of conviction, and is, therefore, necessarily grounded in evidence.”

*Note: Apologetics (in the Greek language apología) is not about "aplogizing" in the modern sense of the word, but rather a reasoned defending the faith.

As Christians, we are directed by Peter (one who was an eyewitness to the life of Christ) to:

….always be ready to give a defense (apología) to everyone who asks you a reason for the hope that is in you, with meekness and fear.

1 Peter 3:15

We are also told by Paul, another eyewitness and major player in the growth of Christianity, that

 faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.

Hebrews 11:1


Unprepared for the world’s attack.

Herein is the problem with the great loss of faith by our young children who enter college and face mature men and women armed with questions and doubts determined to convert their minds into their own agnostic/atheist beliefs.

We raise our young children in almost sterile environments complete with band memberships, Christian socials, and fun things, which are OK.  At night we tell them nice Bible bedtime stories, also good,  but we don’t give them the evidence, substance,  nor the reasons for their faith in Jesus.  Many are ignorant of the Bible itself and its faith-giving prophecies.  Perhaps even more crippling is the absence of a personal experience with and dedication to Jesus.

Even us adults may find ourselves in a state of doubt and an anemic  Christian experience because our faith is not based on facts, but rather feelings and family tradition.

Faith is not blind, it has substance and evidence. I agree with those who say, “my heart cannot rejoice in what my mind rejects.” God invites us to think and use our minds, not just our heart (feelings)

Jesus quoted from the Old Testament when he said,

“…you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind, and with all your strength. 

Mark 12:30

The Christian experience includes the mind (reasoning) and not just the emotion.  God asks us to “reason together” with him (Isaiah 1:18). Reasoning involves communication and this communication is performed through prayer and the opening of the heart to what He has already revealed to us in scripture. But, it also involves having “facts” for faith in Jesus.

The order of the three “f’s” in Christianity must occur in this order: Facts, Faith, Feeling.  The facts about Jesus give you reasons for your faith (trust in Jesus), and all this give you the peace and all the feelings that come from the promises of God’s word.

An experience that starts and based only on feelings is destined to wither under the heat of life’s events.  Faith cannot be mustered up by mental exercises. The faith and feelings will come only by the facts.  This is what Paul stressed when he said,

 So then faith comes by hearing and hearing by the word of God.

Romans 10:17

As one evangelist, I knew, said,

“Little time in God’s word equals little faith, but much time in God’s word equals much faith.”


Not Blind Faith

When Jesus Christ and the apostles called upon a person to exercise faith, it was not a ‘blind faith” but rather an “intelligent faith.”  The apostle Paul said,

I know whom I have believed”

2 Timothy 1:12

Jesus said,

You shall know (not ignore) the truth, and the truth shall make you free.

John 8:32

For me personally and many like me, I could not exercise blind faith about Jesus, I needed substance and evidence. I found it in three sources:  1.)  The prophecies about Jesus, 2.) History, and 3.) Eyewitness accounts.

“*The Christian faith is an objective faith; therefore, it must have an object. The Christian concept of ‘saving’ faith is a faith that establishes one’s relationship with Jesus Christ (the object), and is diametrically opposed to the average ‘philosophical’ use of the term faith in the classroom today.”

“Faith in the Christian sense goes beyond reason but not against it” (Paul Little)

For the Christian, historical facts are critical.  Paul drives home this point when he described the historical fact of the resurrection:

“And if Christ is not risen, then our preaching is empty and your faith is also empty…And if Christ is not risen, then our preaching is empty and your faith is also empty.”

1 Corinthians 15: 14, 17

The Stories of the  Bible Are Not Myths

“Critics sometimes charge, ‘Events such as the virgin birth, the resurrection and ascension, Jesus’ turning water into wine and walking on water didn’t really happen. They were inserted to elevate Jesus to the status of a divine figure, though, if he lived at all, he was no more than a mere mortal.” “A professor of a world literature class to which I spoke asked the question, ‘What do you think of Greek mythology?’ I answered with another question, ‘Do you mean, were the events of the life of Jesus, the resurrection, virgin birth, etc., just myth?’ He answered ‘Yes.’ I replied that there is an obvious difference between the events recorded about Christ in the Bible and the stories conveyed in Greek mythology that bear a vague similarity. The similar stories , such as resurrections, and others, of Greek mythology were not applied to real flesh-and-blood individuals, but instead to non-historical, fictional, mythological characters However, when it comes to Christianity, these events are attached to the historic Jesus of Nazareth who the New Testament writers knew personally, the professor replied, ‘Your’re right, I never realized that before.”

The Bible Contains Eyewitnesses Unlike Mythology or the Writings of Other Religious Works

Peter was an eyewitness who refutes the events as fables:

For we did not follow cunningly devised fables when we made known to you the power and coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, but were eyewitnesses of His majesty.

2 Peter 1:16

John saw and touched Jesus:

 That which was from the beginning, which we have heard, which we have seen with our eyes, which we have looked upon, and our hands have handled, concerning the Word of life— the life was manifested, and we have seen, and bear witness, and declare to you that eternal life which was with the Father and was manifested (made known) to us—  that which we have seen and heard we declare to you, that you also may have fellowship with us; and truly our fellowship is with the Father and with His Son Jesus Christ.

1 John 1: 1-3

Luke, an educated physician put together a narrative from a “perfect understanding” of the events.

Inasmuch as many have taken in hand to set in order a narrative of those things which have been fulfilled  among us, just as those who from the beginning were eyewitnesses and ministers of the word delivered them to us, it seemed good to me also, having had perfect understanding of all things from the very first, to write to you an orderly account, most excellent Theophilus,

Luke 1:1-3

Luke followed it up with “infallible proofs” as Jesus was seen by many for “forty days” after the cross.

The former account I made, O Theophilus, of all that Jesus began both to do and teach,  until the day in which He was taken up, after He through the Holy Spirit had given commandments to the apostles whom He had chosen, to whom He also presented Himself alive after His suffering by many infallible proofs, being seen by them during forty days and speaking of the things pertaining to the kingdom of God.

Acts 1: 1-3

Paul saw Jesus after 500 people saw him “at once” ( a congregation of people), then James and all the apostles saw Him.

After that, He was seen by over five hundred brethren at once, of whom the greater part remain to the present, but some have fallen asleep. After that, He was seen by James, then by all the apostles Then last of all, He was seen by me also, as by one born out of due time.

1 Corinthians 15: 6-8

John was an eyewitness to Jesus’ miracles and signs, most were not even written down! 

And truly Jesus did many other signs in the presence of His disciples, which are not written in this bookbut these are written that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that believing you may have life in His name….And there are also many other things that Jesus did, which if they were written one by one, I suppose that even the world itself could not contain the books that would be written. Amen.

John 20: 30-31, 21:25

Luke states they were all witnesses even His death, resurrection, and having meals with Him afterward.

And we are witnesses of all things which He did both in the land of the Jews and in Jerusalem, whom theykilled by hanging on a tree. Him God raised up on the third day, and showed Him openly not to all the people, but to witnesses chosen before by God, even to us who ate and drank with Him after He arose from the deadAnd He commanded us to preach to the people and to testify that it is He who was ordained by God to be Judge of the living and the dead.

Acts 10: 39-42

Peter witness not only His sufferings but also looked forward to the second glorious return as taught by Jesus before he died!

The elders who are among you I exhort, I who am a fellow elder and a witness of the sufferings of Christ, and also a partaker of the glory that will be revealed:

1 Peter 1:5

His followers listened and watched as Jesus ascended to heaven as promised.

Now when He had spoken these things, while they watched, He was taken up, and a cloud received Him out of their sight.

Acts 1:9

Peter discloses to hecklers to the Pentecost that they also saw and know the actions and events of Jesus life

Men of Israel, hear these words: Jesus of Nazareth, a Man attested by God to you by miracles, wonders, and signs which God did through Him in your midst, as you yourselves also know

Acts 2:22

After Festus called Paul mad, Paul discloses that all that Jesus did was in the open and King Agrippa must have known about it. Further, Paul appealed to King Agrippa’s knowledge of the prophets and the fulfillment of their words in Jesus.

Now as he thus made his defense, Festus said with a loud voice, “Paul, you are beside yourself! Much learning is driving you mad!”

 But he said, “I am not mad, most noble Festus, but speak the words of truth and reason For the king, before whom I also speak freely, knows these things; for I am convinced that none of these things escapes his attention since this thing was not done in a cornerKing Agrippa, do you believe the prophets? I know that you do believe.”

28 Then Agrippa said to Paul, “You almost persuade me to become a Christian.”

Acts 26: 24-28


The Christian beliefs are not based on blind faith nor myths and fables. They are based on substance and evidence. Like all historical characters, there were eyewitnesses.  Faith is based on substance and evidence, but even the evidence is not enough to convert a person.  That person will only be convinced and converted if they yield to the encouraging the work of God’s Spirit which brings conviction about sin and its ultimate results.  Once the person goes “all-in” with Jesus, they will discover a life of peace, real joy, and hope in the coming events proclaimed by Jesus and God’s word.

Next time we will continue our study on misconceptions about Christianity.

*Much thanks to Josh McDowell and his book The New Evidence That Demands A Verdict. Volume I and II

Science, Sickness, and Death-Good Reasons to Doubt?

Listen to my teaching, and you will be wise; do not ignore it.

Proverbs 8:33

A Brilliant Mind Falls Short

Albert Einstein was arguably one of the most brilliant minds of all times, yet he admitted his short-comings and “limited mind” on the topic of God.  He did not believe in a personal God. He considered himself an  agnostic or a “religious unbeliever.”

Einstein was not an atheist. He could see the work of a Creator in the order of the cosmos. He often complained about being put into the atheist camp:

“In view of such harmony in the cosmos which I, with my limited human mind, am able to recognize, there are yet people who say there is no God. But what really makes me angry is that they quote me for the support of such views.”5

“I’m not an atheist and I don’t think I can call myself a pantheist. We are in the position of a little child entering a huge library filled with books in many languages. The child knows someone must have written those books. It does not know how. It does not understand the languages in which they are written. The child dimly suspects a mysterious order in the arrangements of the books but doesn’t know what it is. That, it seems to me, is the attitude of even the most intelligent human being toward God.”6

Einstein also expressed his skepticism regarding the existence of an anthropomorphic God, such as the God of Abrahamic religions, often describing this view as “naïve”[3] and “childlike”.[11] 

In a 1947 letter, he stated, “It seems to me that the idea of a personal God is an anthropological concept which I cannot take seriously.”[12] In a letter to Beatrice Frohlich on 17 December 1952, Einstein stated,

“The idea of a personal God is quite alien to me and seems even naïve.”[13]

He also said, in an interview with the Saturday Evening Post (1929):

“As a child, I received instruction both in the Bible and in the Talmud. I am a Jew, but I am enthralled by the luminous figure of the Nazarene.”

When asked,

“Do you accept the historical existence of Jesus?”, He replied emphatically,

“Unquestionably! No one can read the Gospels without feeling the actual presence of Jesus. His personality pulsates in every word. No myth is filled with such life.”7


The Shortcoming of Scientific Intelligence-Lack of Knowledge

Here is the oxymoron of Einstein’s statements. It fits many who consider Jesus to be a wise teacher, but nothing more:

Albert had doubts about the existence of a personal God, but he found Jesus wise and appealing in many ways. That is personal. Despite all this, he would not follow God’s own instructions so that he could know him personally:

And you will seek Me and find Me, when you search for Me with all your heart.

Jeremiah 29:13

God, Himself, tells the reader of His word that it is possible to know and understand Him.

But let him who glories glory in this,
That he understands and knows Me,
That I am the Lord, exercising lovingkindness, judgment, and righteousness in the earth.
For in these, I delight,” says the Lord.

Jeremiah 9:24

It is possible to have a personal relationship with One who delights in things.  Being delightful is a very human emotion. It is an emotion that God possesses. There are human beings (like God) who are loving, kind, and always does the right thing for others, often sacrificing their own desires and comforts.  They did not come to be this way by themselves.  God is the author of these qualities!  But, there is another author at work that has opposite qualities.

Here is the big hangup in the scientific mind.  They won’t accept the fact that evil had a beginning and the flames of its passion are whipped up by this entity in the minds and hearts of people every day.   He is the author of destruction and death.

The scientific mind can’t, or won’t, consider the Bible as a viable book to read and study; therefore they will not search for spiritual knowledge. And since they won’t search its inspired writers, their skepticism grows. The converted Paul said,

But the natural man does not receive the things of the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him; nor can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned.

1 Corinthians 2:14

They can’t see the order of the cosmos and life as did Mr. Einstein. They would rather attribute it to chance and billions of years of blind luck. But, let’s be fair.  There are some very good reasons for people to doubt the existence of God or, at the least, a personal God.


Religion and Jesus-Two Different Things:

Real followers of Christ (not the religious) have found that the key to understanding God is Jesus. It is all about Him from Genesis to Revelation:

1 Corinthians 2:14

You search the Scriptures,…. these are they which testify of Me.-Jesus

John 5:39

At another time, Jesus revealed to his disciples an important truth about the God of the Old Testament and Himself.

 “These are the words which I spoke to you while I was still with you, that all things must be fulfilled which were written in the Law of Moses and the Prophets and the Psalms concerning Me. And He opened their understanding, that they might comprehend the Scriptures.

Luke 24:  44, 45

So if the scriptures are about Jesus, we can’t just say he is a “good teacher” or a “good moral man”….who suddenly and without warning appeared on the scene.  He is the One who all the writers of the Old Testament wrote and sought over the millennia of time. But, when

the time was right, God sent his Son…..Galatians 4:4

So, why wouldn’t a scientific mind desire to have a knowledge of Jesus and scripture?  It is because it is not science and does not fit into the comfortable world of science and its operational sterile paradigms.  The Bible is not a book of science, but rather a book about the human experience and spiritual truths. If God is all that He claims to be, then He is the author of science and the scientists are merely the discoverers of His science.  For example, scientists did not create the laws of gravity…they discovered them.


Religion is Its Own Worst Enemy

Another couple of reasons for the scientific mind to dismiss the book that provides insight into many of the human experiences not addressed by science is the radical religionists and suffering.

The religious people are their own worst enemy! The ones who are not real followers of Jesus, but people who are re”religious” portray the God of mercy and loving-kindness and his truth into undesirable rounds of ceremonies, does and don’ts, eternal torment, and guilt trips. Some even feel God desires them to terrorize people into belief…and I am not just talking about our friends in the middle east. How often is eternal burning hell used as a weapon to scare the uninformed into belief?

You can’t blame unbelievers.  For a long time, this was my main reasons for unbelief and disdain for churches.  There are no answers or peace in such a religious world. But, there is a path to truth in Jesus who invites people into a one-on-one experience with Him.

Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls.  For My yoke is easy and My burden is light.”

Matthew 11:28-30


Unbelief in God Because of Death and Suffering

Often I receive comments from readers of this blog and some of my Facebook sites who say that Jesus is “an imaginary friend.” While others ask, “Where was God’ when my (fill in a family member relationship) died from cancer or was killed in a car wreck, etc.

Einstein had similar feelings about the incompatibility of a caring God and the daily horrors of planet earth:

How many have asked….

 “Why would God allow my family member to die of cancer?”

Why has he allowed death and destruction to reign on this planet?”

Where was God when...If there is a God, He is not in control.”

These questions pre-suppose that God should make our lives perfect and without sin, death, and destruction.  To the uninformed, belief is contingent upon our feelings of what God should be like.  But, this is not according to what is revealed in God’s word.  This author captures my next thoughts exactly:

God made man perfectly holy and happy; and the fair earth, as it came from the Creator’s hand, bore no blight of decay or shadow of the curse. It is transgression of God’s law–the law of love–that has brought woe and death. Yet even amid the suffering that results from sin, God’s love is revealed. It is written that God cursed the ground for man’s sake. Genesis 3:17. The thorn and the thistle–the difficulties and trials that make his life one of toil and care–were appointed for his good as a part of the training needful in God’s plan for his uplifting from the ruin and degradation that sin has wrought. 

God’s Love for Man. Page 9

When God made man as described in the opening chapters of Genesis, everything He made, He declared “good” or “very good.” There was not death, decaying, or the curse. But something went terribly wrong. Evil in the form of a rebellious angel called Lucifer began the journey of sin, death, and decay.  He is the author of the bad things in this life not God for it is written:

 Everything good comes from God. Every perfect gift is from him. These good gifts come down from the Father who made all the lights in the sky. But God never changes like the shadows from those lights. He is always the same.

James 1:17 (ERV)

So when we blame God for the evil in this world, we demonstrate we do so without a knowledge of God and what He has revealed to us through his word.

“For My thoughts are not your thoughts,
Nor are your ways My ways,” says the Lord.
“For as the heavens are higher than the earth,
So are My ways higher than your ways,
And My thoughts than your thoughts.

Isaiah 55: 8, 9

Einstein’s failure to understand the motives of God are the result of his incorrect assumption that God intended this universe as His ultimate perfect creation. Einstein could not get past the moral problems that are present in our universe. He assumed, as most atheists do, that a personal God would only create a universe which is both good morally and perfect physically. Where Einstein erred was in that thinking that there was a god who designed the universe, but designed it in such as way as to allow evil without a purpose


It would be too inconvenient or dangerous to the dedicated scientist and to their worldview to consider there might be more to existence than what can be explained through formulas, books, test tubes, and philosophies, or unbelieving professors that focus only on what can be seen and understood by “limited human minds.”  Therefore, many won’t listen or follow any of Jesus’ words even though all are invited to follow Him down a path of discovery. So His words are chosen by unbelievers and religionists like fruit from the tree of knowledge to fit their own likeness of God, while other less palatable instructions are left to rot on the altar of narcissism and selfishness.

…while we do not look at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen. For the things which are seen are temporary, but the things which are not seen are eternal.

2 Corinthians 4:18

And you will seek Me and find Me, when you search for Me with all your heart.

John 5:39

Ultimately, we cannot project limited human thoughts, philosophies, or reasoning upon God and create Him in our own image. He is supreme.  We are not.  He is omnipotent, we are not.

 How can we intelligently base our decision to be an unbeliever based on cancer which is often the result of our own actions i.e. smoking cigarettes or runaway eating of anything and everything?

The order and intelligence of the design of the universe leave us will little excuse for unbelief.

For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even His eternal power and Godhead, so that they are without excuse,

Romans 1:20

Yes, you can know God personally, but you must search and desire to understand and gain knowledge unlike what you will gain from the textbooks or even blog sites like this.  Being a scientist does not mean you can’t study and read the Bible.  If you do, at the least, you will find wisdom.  In fact, there are many scientists who are believers in Jesus and have faith in God’s word.

I have concluded that unbelievers are the uninformed! When I searched out Jesus through the Bible I found Him. He is there if you will just look.

Listen to my teaching, and you will be wise; do not ignore it.

Proverbs 8:33

If you want to begin your Jesus journey through the Bible, I invite you to click on the site below to begin a basic understanding of God’s word.  These studies will lead you to a deeper and deeper to an understanding of spiritual things and the God who made the universe.

Free Online Bible School



  1. “Science without religion is lame, religion without science is blind.” (Albert Einstein, “Science, Philosophy and Religion: a Symposium”, 1941)
  2. “My position concerning God is that of an agnostic. I am convinced that a vivid consciousness of the primary importance of moral principles for the betterment and ennoblement of life does not need the idea of a law-giver, especially a law-giver who works on the basis of reward and punishment.” (Albert Einstein in a letter to M. Berkowitz, October 25, 1950; Einstein Archive 59–215; from Alice Calaprice, ed., The New Quotable Einstein, Princeton, New Jersey: Princeton University Press, 2005, p. 206. )
  3. Helen Dukas and Banesh Hoffman (eds) (1981). Albert Einstein, The Human Side. Princeton University Press. p. 43.
  4. Cable reply to Rabbi Herbert S. Goldstein’s (Institutional Synagogue in New York) question to Einstein, “Do you believe in God?”.
  5. Prinz Hubertus zu Lowenstein, Towards the Further Shore: An Autobiography (Victor Gollancz, London, 1968), p. 156.
  6. G. S. Viereck, Glimpses of the Great (Macauley, New York, 1930), quoted by D. Brian, Einstein: A Life , p. 186.
  7. G. S. Viereck, “What Life Means to Einstein,” Saturday Evening Post, 26 October 1929; Schlagschatten, Sechsundzwanzig Schicksalsfragen an Grosse der Zeit (Vogt-Schild, Solothurn, 1930), p. 60; Glimpses of the Great (Macauley, New York, 1930), pp. 373-374.




The Wisest Will Search For Him

Wise men journey

Now after Jesus was born in Bethlehem of Judea in the days of Herod the king, behold, wise men from the East came to Jerusalem, saying, “Where is He who has been born King of the Jews? For we have seen His star in the East and have come to worship Him.”

 When Herod the king heard this, he was troubled, and all Jerusalem with him.

Matthew 2:1-3


Our journey has been difficult.  We have fought sand storms, cold, and that never-ending heat! My back aches from the rocking motion of my camel.  It is like riding on a slow-moving boat pushed back and forth continually by repetitive and stern ocean waves.  But, I am sure our inconveniences will be rewarded! We have put our hearts and time into this journey, because we are certain of the prophecies from the ancient scrolls.

The camels have done well, but like us, they enjoy the breaks we often take and the people we meet along the way.  When we pass through the many villages, the beasts become the center of attention for the children who try to feed them hay and anything else they can find.

The adults are filled with questions about our journey and our destination.  They want to know where we come from.  Their wide eyes reveal they are impressed with the distance we have traveled.  We are glad to share with them the news of the Messiah and what we know from the ancient scrolls.  Some consider us crazy, but many listen and wish they could go with us.  They call it an adventure, but we know it is more…much more.

Night time is my favorite part of the day because of the brightness of the star in the east and the peace that comes from the quiet, disturbed only by the crackling fire and the occasional snort of a tired camel.  The star is a constant reminder of the accuracy of the scrolls and a confirmation of our journey.  Many people we have met have seen the unusually bright star in the east and wondered.  They don’t know what it means but are comforted by its beauty and marvel that its magnificence is not diminished by the light of day.  When we started, it was low on the horizon, but it is rising and become brighter as we have drawn nearer to our destination, Bethlehem!

I lean back on the saddle I have used as a pillow and enjoy the warmth of the fire.  I am warm and content.  My journal and mind are filling up with my notes.  I make this entry under the light from the twinkling star-lit night.

Now, we are only one day out from Jerusalem.  We hope to visit King Herod and celebrate with him the coming of the Messiah.  The town is surely busy with activity and celebration even though it has taken us many months to get this far.


Our anticipation grows so much that we wake in the clearness of the night so we can arrive in Jerusalem early in the morning to seek audience with the king before we head off to Bethlehem only about 10 kilometers (6.2 miles) to the south of the capital city.

So I rise with the others, full of energy.  We mount our ships of the desert, who match our excitement to start moving again.  This is going to be a good day! I can feel it!

The night is cold and the star brighter than ever!  We hear music in the distance.  As we approach the outskirts of Jerusalem, we are greeted by shepherds watching over their sheep.  With wonder in their eyes, they run up to our caravan and ask us the usual questions about us, our destination, and home.

I tell them the story of our journey and our wish to see the new baby king.  They are polite and respectful and let us speak first. When we have a pause, they begin to talk fast and together as if they will burst if their words are not heard.  Wonder and curiosity force us to quickly dismount our camels and gather around them.  They calm themselves and begin to talk one at a time.   Then begins their beautiful story of the night’s events when the Messiah was born.

We were in the field at night when we heard the sound of singing and joy and there was light all around us that lit up the countryside like it was daytime….only brighter.

Then the next one speaks with equal intensity.“We were afraid! I turned my eyes toward the ground”

A third young man, a little older says,“The brightness was coming from an angel who told us to fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people.”

The angel told us to go to the city of David where we would find Christ the Lord and we would find a baby wrapped in swaddling clothes lying in a manger.”

Another one talks before the older one finishes,”The music continued and many more angels appeared high in the night sky!”

It is starting to come all together for me.  The older boy exclaims with confidence, “That star you have followed are angels.  They began to sing again as your caravan approached us.”

The youngest one blurts out, “After the angels appeared to us, we left our flocks and raced towards Bethlehem.  There we found a woman by the name of Mary and her husband Joseph and there in a manger was the baby they call Jesus.”

My heart pounds faster as I realize we now know the name of the king!  His name is Jesus!

Their eyes are bright and they all nod their heads in agreement when the older shepherd boy slows down his words and says with tears in his eyes. “Our hearts are changed! We can’t stop talking about that night and the baby Jesus.  We have told everyone!  Even Mary rejoiced at our story!”


The visit with the young men has inspired and energized us!  We have also learned the name of the mother and father. It is an easier climb back on my camel.  Our strength has been renewed as well as our urgency to get to Bethlehem.  The music and praise in the heavens grow louder and brighter even as the yellow and orange of the sunrise pull us toward Jerusalem and King Herod.

We arrive in Jerusalem by mid-morning. The smell of food awakens our hunger. But, our great desire to see the king as soon as possible overrides all our other senses.

There is a crowd to meet us.  It is easy to notice they are not like the excited shepherds.  They are curious and seem afraid and worried.  Maybe it is our large caravan and the way we look.  Our skin and clothes are different.

We finally arrive at the king’s palace and request an audience with him.  To my surprise, we are immediately invited in.  A few of us go and the others mix with the growing crowd outside telling them of our journey and the new story from the shepherds which they had already heard.  And of course, the children ask many questions and try to feed the camels.

The king reflects the same aura as the people outside.  He looks concerned.  For a moment I wonder if we made a mistake coming here.

I am the first one to speak.

In my excitement, I blurt out words without considering that I am talking to a king.

“Where is he that is born King of the Jews? for we have seen his star in the east, and are come to worship him.”

I begin to think this was not a good question and statement…asking a reigning king about a king that will rule the Jews in the future.  The king struggles to stay polite and excuses himself.  We can hear him calling all his wise men and priests together, who were standing close by.  He tries to whisper so we can’t hear, but the cold palace lets his voice carry easily through its halls.

He is angry and demands they tell him where this Christ would be born.  We hear them quote the same scrolls we studied before and after we left on our long journey.  The word “Bethlehem” is heard clearly.

We look at each other with the same surprise.  They have taken the words of their ancient prophets so lightly.  I feel foreboding and regret rising up as the king invites us back into his private chambers.

A forced smile appears on his troubled face. He apologizes for not being more hospitable and invites us to have some food and something to drink.  I am uncomfortable.  The meeting is uncomfortable.  We politely eat some of the food even though our hunger is of a different sort.

He asks about our trip and we tell him about our long journey, the star in the east, and the shepherds we met just outside of town.  We sense we should not be telling the king anything and look for an excuse to leave quickly.

Then he asks us a question he was eager to know.  It seemed to be the main reason for his talking with us hinged on this question.

“When was it you first saw the star and began the journey ?”

Reluctantly, I tell him it has been almost two years.  He then says in almost a whisper and an evil voice,

“Go and search for him and when you find him, bring him here to the palace that I might worship him too.”

With a jump and quick turn around, he immediately leaves us and disappears back into the palace.

The attendant escorts us back to our caravan and the crowd that has gathered. We never expected to have such a greeting.  I along with my friends have become suspicious and concerned.  We are glad to get back on our camels and back to following the star which has turned us south towards the sleepy little village of Bethlehem.


The sun has risen fast.  It waits for no one.  We continue our journey south towards Bethlehem.  It is a short distance, but we travel slowly enjoying the final leg of our journey.  It will be dark before we arrive.

The excitement of seeing the new king of the Jews comes back to our hearts as we travel along silently contemplating the events of last night and this morning.  The crowds have disappeared.


There before us, lies the twinkling lights of the little city of Bethlehem!  The star is just above the peaceful town shining its clear light and casting shadows on the surrounding hillside. How beautiful it is! We feel happiness and express our joy and congratulations to each other.  A journey of hundreds of miles has brought us to this moment! A small group of people comes to greet us at the entrance to the village.  We ask for Mary and Joseph.

The star is almost directly overhead, as a sweet girl escorts us to a tiny house near the edge of town.

Dismounting our camels, we hear the music again far up in the night sky.  Mary greets us at the door as we crowd into the small clean home.

We feel the presence of royalty as the young toddler Jesus walks into the room.  Emotions overcome us and we fall down and worship the child we know to be the fulfillment of thousands of years of prophecy.  We have seen him in all the scrolls of the Jews many times.  The face of God is in his! We can sense a power that searches our hearts. Many of us weep and then gather ourselves so we can give our gifts.

We bring in our offerings of gold, frankincense, and myrrh and we celebrate our time with Jesus, Mary, and Joseph.  They make our visit enjoyable and pleasant.  We spend the night laughing and playing with little Jesus.  I take him up in my arms and show him the camels.  They are calm and peaceful as Jesus reaches out and touches them.  He wants to touch all of them!  Never before have I see such a face as the One who looks at me.  The others demand their time to hold him, so  I pass him to the other men.  I still feel his warmth in my arms and on my chest.  The journey has been worth every step and more.  My heart wants to burst with joy!  I feel alive!

The rest of the night is spent talking and eating. Too soon,  our time with Mary, Joseph, and Jesus is finished. Before we leave we ask for permission to anoint Jesus with more gifts we brought. It is a special moment when we place the sweet smell upon the head of Jesus as he sits in his mother’s lap.  We are content and feel the presence of God in the room and in the sparkling eyes of the little king.

I am in wonder about why more people do not understand, that here before us is Immanuel (God with us)! This little boy will grow up to save the world from eternal death!  He will pay the penalty that we deserve and teach us spiritual things about the kingdom of God!  It is all in the ancient scrolls!

We wish to stay, but feel we must begin our journey back.  We promise to return when the child is older.  We know from the writings of the prophet Daniel, that the young child will live to be only about 30 years old and then he will sacrifice himself for the sins of the people and rise on the third day to show his power over the clutches of the grave and death.

Our wish is to return when he is older, but in the meantime, we pledge among ourselves to share, in our homeland, the good news of the birth of Jesus.  We will begin to tell our story with those we will meet along the way back to our home in the west.

We say our good-byes to Jesus, Mary, and Joseph and begin to head back north.

I am stopped in my tracks as I begin to consider our strange visit with King Herod.

We decide to take a different path home and head east instead of North.  The king is up to some evil and we don’t want to help him in any way.  We probably made a mistake visiting him and giving him information about the approximate age of the baby Jesus.  It is an unfortunate turn of events. We are going to miss the young shepherd boys on the way back.  I was looking forward to telling them of our visit.

The star is gone as we begin our travel home.  We stop to rest when we feel we have put some distance between us and King Herod.  Around the fire, we talk about our great journey and look again at scripture.  We come across a disturbing message from the prophet Jeremiah:

Thus says the Lord:
“A voice is heard in Ramah,
    lamentation and bitter weeping.
Rachel is weeping for her children;
    she refuses to be comforted for her children,
    because they are no more.”

Jeremiah 31:15

Soon the voices and the fire go out and we sleep…exhausted from excitement and the sleep we missed,I can feel the warmth of my camel next to me. The trip home will be long, but it will go fast as we tell the wonderful story of Jesus along the way.

Later, the next day, we hear the news and fulfillment of that passage in Jeremiah that troubled us.  King Herod had all the male children 2 years old and younger killed.  What a cruel and foolish man!

We also got news that Joseph was warned of Herod’s intention and our friends Mary, Joseph, and baby Jesus escaped to the safety of Egypt.

After Herod died a few years later, Joseph took his family to a little town called Nazareth.

More fulfillment of the ancient scrolls:

“And out of Egypt, I called my son.”

Hosea 11:1

Our journey to find Jesus was long and difficult, but we have been transformed by it. The scrolls, the star, the shepherds even the evil king Herod has made us wiser. But most of all, it has made us a believer in Jesus.

We will continue to study the ancient scrolls because now that we have seen Jesus ourselves, we can see Him in every story told there.

So many scrolls to read, so little time.

And ye shall seek me, and find me, when ye shall search for me with all your heart.

Jeremiah 29:13


My friends, join me in a Christmas worship of the One who gave all that we might have all.  Let us fall on our knees this night as we think about the birth of Jesus and the visit of men who were seeking Him.  They found Him!  Have you?

Click here for a beautiful video and song:

Oh Holy Night!


For additional study:

Jesus’  first coming was predicted in hundreds of Old Testament writings!

The one prophecy that pinpoints the exact time of His coming which helped in the wise men’s timing of their journey and a brief outline of his life, death, and ministry is found in Daniel 9.  To know more about this prophecy, click here:

353 prophecies about the first coming of Christ are below. Much more concerning his second coming…will discuss in future posts.




1. Gen. 3:15 Seed of a woman (virgin birth) Galatians 4:4-5Matthew 1:18
2. Gen. 3:15 He will bruise Satan’s head Hebrews 2:141John 3:8
3. Gen. 3:15 Christ’s heel would be bruised with nails on the cross Matthew 27:35Luke 24:39-40
4. Gen. 5:24 The bodily ascension to heaven illustrated Mark 16:19, Rev. 12:5
5. Gen. 9:26, 27 The God of Shem will be the Son of Shem Luke 3:23-36
6. Gen. 12:3 Seed of Abraham will bless all nations Galatians 3:8Acts 3:2526
7. Gen. 12:7 The Promise made to Abraham’s Seed Galatians 3:16
8. Gen. 14:18 A priest after the order of Melchizedek Hebrews 6:20
9. Gen. 14:18 King of Peace and Righteousness Hebrews 7:2
10. Gen. 14:18 The Last Supper foreshadowed Matthew 26:26-29
11. Gen. 17:19 Seed of Isaac (Gen. 21:12) Romans 9:7
12. Gen. 22:8 The Lamb of God promised John 1:29
13. Gen. 22:18 As Isaac’s seed, will bless all nations Galatians 3:16
14. Gen. 26:2-5 The Seed of Isaac promised as the Redeemer Hebrews 11:18
15. Gen. 28:12 The Bridge to heaven John 1:51
16. Gen. 28:14 The Seed of Jacob Luke 3:34
17. Gen. 49:10 The time of His coming Luke 2:1-7; Galatians 4:4
18. Gen. 49:10 The Seed of Judah Luke 3:33
19. Gen. 49:10 Called Shiloh or One Sent John 17:3
20. Gen. 49:10 Messiah to come before Judah lost identity John 11:47-52
21. Gen. 49:10 Unto Him shall the obedience of the people be John 10:16
22. Ex. 3:13-15 The Great “I AM” John 4:268:58
23. Ex. 12:3-6 The Lamb presented to Israel 4 days before Passover Mark 11:7-11
24. Ex. 12:5 A Lamb without blemish Hebrews 9:141Peter 1:19
25. Ex. 12:13 The blood of the Lamb saves from wrath Romans 5:8
26. Ex. 12:21-27 Christ is our Passover 1Corinthians 5:7
27. Ex. 12:46 Not a bone of the Lamb to be broken John 19:31-36
28. Ex. 15:2 His exaltation predicted as Yeshua Acts 7:5556
29. Ex. 15:11 His Character-Holiness Luke 1:35Acts 4:27
30. Ex. 17:6 The Spiritual Rock of Israel 1Corinthians 10:4
31. Ex. 33:19 His Character-Merciful Luke 1:72
32. Lev. 1:2-9 His sacrifice a sweet smelling savor unto God Ephesians 5:2
33. Lev. 14:11 The leper cleansed-Sign to priesthood Luke 5:12-14Acts 6:7
34. Lev. 16:15-17 Prefigures Christ’s once-for-all death Hebrews 9:7-14
35. Lev. 16:27 Suffering outside the Camp Matthew 27:33Heb. 13:1112
36. Lev. 17:11 The Blood-the life of the flesh Matthew 26:28Mark 10:45
37. Lev. 17:11 It is the blood that makes atonement Rom. 3:23-241John 1:7
38. Lev. 23:36-37 The Drink-offering: “If any man thirst” John 7:37
39. Num. 9:12 Not a bone of Him broken John 19:31-36
40. Num. 21:9 The serpent on a pole-Christ lifted up John 3:14-1812:32
41. Num. 24:17 Time: “I shall see him, but not now.” John 1:14Galatians 4:4
42. Deut. 18:15 “This is of a truth that prophet.” John 6:14
43. Deut. 18:15-16 “Had ye believed Moses, ye would believe me.” John 5:45-47
44. Deut. 18:18 Sent by the Father to speak His word John 8:2829
45. Deut. 18:19 Whoever will not hear must bear his sin Acts 3:22-23
46. Deut. 21:23 Cursed is he that hangs on a tree Galatians 3:10-13
47. Joshua 5:14-15 The Captain of our salvation Hebrews 2:10
48. Ruth 4:4-10 Christ, our kinsman, has redeemed us Ephesians 1:3-7
49. 1 Sam. 2:35 A Faithful Priest Heb. 2:173:1-367:24-25
50. 1 Sam. 2:10 Shall be an anointed King to the Lord Mt. 28:18John 12:15
51. 2 Sam. 7:12 David’s Seed Matthew 1:1
52. 2 Sam. 7:13 His Kingdom is everlasting 2Peter 1:11
53. 2 Sam. 7:14 The Son of God Luke 1:32Romans 1:3-4
54. 2 Sam. 7:16 David’s house established forever Luke 3:31Rev. 22:16
55. 2 Ki. 2:11 The bodily ascension to heaven illustrated Luke 24:51
56. 1 Chr. 17:11 David’s Seed Matthew 1:19:27
57. 1 Chr. 17:12-13 To reign on David’s throne forever Luke 1:3233
58. 1 Chr. 17:13 “I will be His Father, He…my Son.” Hebrews 1:5
59. Job 9:32-33 Mediator between man and God 1 Timothy 2:5
60. Job 19:23-27 The Resurrection predicted John 5:24-29
61. Psa. 2:1-3 The enmity of kings foreordained Acts 4:25-28
62. Psa. 2:2 To own the title, Anointed (Christ) John 1:41Acts 2:36
63. Psa. 2:6 His Character-Holiness John 8:46Revelation 3:7
64. Psa. 2:6 To own the title King Matthew 2:2
65. Psa. 2:7 Declared the Beloved Son Matthew 3:17Romans 1:4
66. Psa. 2:78 The Crucifixion and Resurrection intimated Acts 13:29-33
67. Psa. 2:89 Rule the nations with a rod of iron Rev. 2:2712:519:15
68. Psa. 2:12 Life comes through faith in Him John 20:31
69. Psa. 8:2 The mouths of babes perfect His praise Matthew 21:16
70. Psa. 8:56 His humiliation and exaltation Hebrews 2:5-9
71. Psa. 9:7-10 Judge the world in righteousness Acts 17:31
72. Psa. 16:10 Was not to see corruption Acts 2:3113:35
73. Psa. 16:9-11 Was to arise from the dead John 20:9
74. Psa. 17:15 The resurrection predicted Luke 24:6
75. Psa. 18:2-3 The horn of salvation Luke 1:69-71
76. Psa. 22:1 Forsaken because of sins of others 2 Corinthians 5:21
77. Psa. 22:1 “My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?” Matthew 27:46
78. Psa. 22:2 Darkness upon Calvary for three hours Matthew 27:45
79. Psa. 22:7 They shoot out the lip and shake the head Matthew 27:39-44
80. Psa. 22:8 “He trusted in God, let Him deliver Him” Matthew 27:43
81. Psa. 22:9-10 Born the Saviour Luke 2:7
82. Psa. 22:12-13 They seek His death John 19:6
83. Psa. 22:14 His blood poured out when they pierced His side John 19:34
84. Psa. 22:1415 Suffered agony on Calvary Mark 15:34-37
85. Psa. 22:15 He thirsted John 19:28
86. Psa. 22:16 They pierced His hands and His feet John 19:343720:27
87. Psa. 22:1718 Stripped Him before the stares of men Luke 23:3435
88. Psa. 22:18 They parted His garments John 19:2324
89. Psa. 22:2021 He committed Himself to God Luke 23:46
90. Psa. 22:2021 Satanic power bruising the Redeemer’s heel Hebrews 2:14
91. Psa. 22:22 His Resurrection declared John 20:17
92. Psa. 22:27-28 He shall be the governor of the nations Colossians 1:16
93. Psa. 22:31 “It is finished” John 19:30Heb. 10:10121418
94. Psa. 23:1 “I am the Good Shepherd” John 10:111Peter 2:25
95. Psa. 24:3 His exaltation predicted Acts 1:11Philippians 2:9
96. Psa. 30:3 His resurrection predicted Acts 2:32
97. Psa. 31:5 “Into thy hands I commit my spirit” Luke 23:46
98. Psa. 31:11 His acquaintances fled from Him Mark 14:50
99. Psa. 31:13 They took counsel to put Him to death Mt. 27:1John 11:53
100. Psa. 31:1415 “He trusted in God, let Him deliver him” Matthew 27:43
101. Psa. 34:20 Not a bone of Him broken John 19:31-36
102. Psa. 35:11 False witnesses rose up against Him Matthew 26:59
103. Psa. 35:19 He was hated without a cause John 15:25
104. Psa. 38:11 His friends stood afar off Luke 23:49
105. Psa. 38:12 Enemies try to entangle Him by craft Mark 14:1Mt. 22:15
106. Psa. 38:12-13 Silent before His accusers Matthew 27:12-14
107. Psa. 38:20 He went about doing good Acts 10:38
108. Psa. 40:2-5 The joy of His resurrection predicted John 20:20
109. Psa. 40:6-8 His delight-the will of the Father John 4:34Heb. 10:5-10
110. Psa. 40:9 He was to preach the Righteousness in Israel Matthew 4:17
111. Psa. 40:14 Confronted by adversaries in the Garden John 18:4-6
112. Psa. 41:9 Betrayed by a familiar friend John 13:18
113. Psa. 45:2 Words of Grace come from His lips John 1:17Luke 4:22
114. Psa. 45:6 To own the title, God or Elohim Hebrews 1:8
115. Psa. 45:7 A special anointing by the Holy Spirit Mt. 3:16Heb. 1:9
116. Psa. 45:78 Called the Christ (Messiah or Anointed) Luke 2:11
117. Psa. 45:17 His name remembered forever Ephesians 1:20-21Heb. 1:8
118. Psa. 55:12-14 Betrayed by a friend, not an enemy John 13:18
119. Psa. 55:15 Unrepentant death of the Betrayer Matthew 27:3-5Acts 1:16-19
120. Psa. 68:18 To give gifts to men Ephesians 4:7-16
121. Psa. 68:18 Ascended into Heaven Luke 24:51
122. Psa. 69:4 Hated without a cause John 15:25
123. Psa. 69:8 A stranger to own brethren John 1:117:5
124. Psa. 69:9 Zealous for the Lord’s House John 2:17
125. Psa. 69:14-20 Messiah’s anguish of soul before crucifixion Matthew 26:36-45
126. Psa. 69:20 “My soul is exceeding sorrowful.” Matthew 26:38
127. Psa. 69:21 Given vinegar in thirst Matthew 27:34
128. Psa. 69:26 The Saviour given and smitten by God John 17:418:11
129. Psa. 72:1011 Great persons were to visit Him Matthew 2:1-11
130. Psa. 72:16 The corn of wheat to fall into the Ground John 12:24-25
131. Psa. 72:17 Belief on His name will produce offspring John 1:1213
132. Psa. 72:17 All nations shall be blessed by Him Galatians 3:8
133. Psa. 72:17 All nations shall call Him blessed John 12:13Rev. 5:8-12
134. Psa. 78:1-2 He would teach in parables Matthew 13:34-35
135. Psa. 78:2 To speak the Wisdom of God with authority Matthew 7:29
136. Psa. 80:17 The Man of God’s right hand Mark 14:61-62
137. Psa. 88 The Suffering and Reproach of Calvary Matthew 27:26-50
138. Psa. 88:8 They stood afar off and watched Luke 23:49
139. Psa. 89:27 Firstborn Colossians 1:1518
140. Psa. 89:27 Emmanuel to be higher than earthly kings Luke 1:3233
141. Psa. 89:35-37 David’s Seed, throne, kingdom endure forever Luke 1:3233
142. Psa. 89:36-37 His character-Faithfulness Revelation 1:519:11
143. Psa. 90:2 He is from everlasting (Micah 5:2) John 1:1
144. Psa. 91:1112 Identified as Messianic; used to tempt Christ Luke 4:1011
145. Psa. 97:9 His exaltation predicted Acts 1:11Ephesians 1:20
146. Psa. 100:5 His character-Goodness Matthew 19:1617
147. Psa. 102:1-11 The Suffering and Reproach of Calvary John 19:16-30
148. Psa. 102:25-27 Messiah is the Preexistent Son Hebrews 1:10-12
149. Psa. 109:25 Ridiculed Matthew 27:39
150. Psa. 110:1 Son of David Matthew 22:42-43
151. Psa. 110:1 To ascend to the right-hand of the Father Mark 16:19
152. Psa. 110:1 David’s son called Lord Matthew 22:4445
153. Psa. 110:4 A priest after Melchizedek’s order Hebrews 6:20
154. Psa. 112:4 His character-Compassionate, Gracious, et al Matthew 9:36
155. Psa. 118:1718 Messiah’s Resurrection assured Luke 24:5-71Cor. 15:20
156. Psa. 118:2223 The rejected stone is Head of the corner Matthew 21:4243
157. Psa. 118:26 The Blessed One presented to Israel Matthew 21:9
158. Psa. 118:26 To come while Temple standing Matthew 21:12-15
159. Psa. 132:11 The Seed of David (the fruit of His Body) Luke 1:32Act 2:30
160. Psa. 129:3 He was scourged Matthew 27:26
161. Psa. 138:1-6 The supremacy of David’s Seed amazes kings Matthew 2:2-6
162. Psa. 147:36 The earthly ministry of Christ described Luke 4:18
163. Prov. 1:23 He will send the Spirit of God John 16:7
164. Prov. 8:23 Foreordained from everlasting Rev. 13:81Peter 1:19-20
165. Song. 5:16 The altogether lovely One John 1:17
166. Isa. 2:3 He shall teach all nations John 4:25
167. Isa. 2:4 He shall judge among the nations John 5:22
168. Isa. 6:1 When Isaiah saw His glory John 12:40-41
169. Isa. 6:8 The One Sent by God John 12:38-45
170. Isa. 6:9-10 Parables fall on deaf ears Matthew 13:13-15
171. Isa. 6:9-12 Blinded to Christ and deaf to His words Acts 28:23-29
172. Isa. 7:14 To be born of a virgin Luke 1:35
173. Isa. 7:14 To be Emmanuel-God with us Matthew 1:18-231Tim. 3:16
174. Isa. 8:8 Called Emmanuel Matthew 28:20
175. Isa. 8:14 A stone of stumbling, a Rock of offense 1Peter 2:8
176. Isa. 9:12 His ministry to begin in Galilee Matthew 4:12-17
177. Isa. 9:6 A child born-Humanity Luke 1:31
178. Isa. 9:6 A Son given-Deity Luke 1:32John 1:141Tim. 3:16
179. Isa. 9:6 Declared to be the Son of God with power Romans 1:34
180. Isa. 9:6 The Wonderful One, Peleh Luke 4:22
181. Isa. 9:6 The Counsellor, Yaatz Matthew 13:54
182. Isa. 9:6 The Mighty God, El Gibor 1Cor. 1:24Titus 2:13
183. Isa. 9:6 The Everlasting Father, Avi Adth John 8:5810:30
184. Isa. 9:6 The Prince of Peace, Sar Shalom John 16:33
185. Isa. 9:7 Inherits the throne of David Luke 1:32
186. Isa. 9:7 His Character-Just John 5:30
187. Isa. 9:7 No end to his Government, Throne, and kingdom Luke 1:33
188. Isa. 11:1 Called a Nazarene-the Branch, Netzer Matthew 2:23
189. Isa. 11:1 A rod out of Jesse-Son of Jesse Luke 3:2332
190. Isa. 11:2 Anointed One by the Spirit Matthew 3:1617Acts 10:38
191. Isa. 11:2 His Character-Wisdom, Knowledge, et al Colossians 2:3
192. Isa. 11:3 He would know their thoughts Luke 6:8John 2:25
193. Isa. 11:4 Judge in righteousness Acts 17:31
194. Isa. 11:4 Judges with the sword of His mouth Rev. 2:1619:1115
195. Isa. 11:5 Character: Righteous & Faithful Rev. 19:11
196. Isa. 11:10 The Gentiles seek Him John 12:18-21
197. Isa. 12:2 Called Jesus-Yeshua Matthew 1:21
198. Isa. 22:22 The One given all authority to govern Revelation 3:7
199. Isa. 25:8 The Resurrection predicted 1Corinthians 15:54
200. Isa. 26:19 His power of Resurrection predicted Matthew 27:50-54
201. Isa. 28:16 The Messiah is the precious corner stone Acts 4:1112
202. Isa. 28:16 The Sure Foundation 1Corinthians 3:11Mt. 16:18
203. Isa. 29:13 He indicated hypocritical obedience to His Word Matthew 15:7-9
204. Isa. 29:14 The wise are confounded by the Word 1Corinthians 1:18-31
205. Isa. 32:2 A Refuge-A man shall be a hiding place Matthew 23:37
206. Isa. 35:4 He will come and save you Matthew 1:21
207. Isa. 35:5-6 To have a ministry of miracles Matthew 11:2-6
208. Isa. 40:34 Preceded by forerunner John 1:23
209. Isa. 40:9 “Behold your God.” John 1:3619:14
210. Isa. 40:10. He will come to reward Revelation 22:12
211. Isa. 40:11 A shepherd-compassionate life-giver John 10:10-18
212. Isa. 42:1-4 The Servant-as a faithful, patient redeemer Matthew 12:18-21
213. Isa. 42:2 Meek and lowly Matthew 11:28-30
214. Isa. 42:3 He brings hope for the hopeless Mt. 12:14-21John 4:1-54
215. Isa. 42:4 The nations shall wait on His teachings John 12:20-26
216. Isa. 42:6 The Light (salvation) of the Gentiles Luke 2:32
217. Isa. 42:16 His is a worldwide compassion Matthew 28:1920
218. Isa. 42:7 Blind eyes opened. John 9:25-38
219. Isa. 43:11 He is the only Saviour. Acts 4:12
220. Isa. 44:3 He will send the Spirit of God John 16:713
221. Isa. 45:21-25 He is Lord and Saviour Philippians 3:20Titus 2:13
222. Isa. 45:23 He will be the Judge John 5:22Romans 14:11
223. Isa. 46:910 Declares things not yet done John 13:19
224. Isa. 48:12 The First and the Last John 1:30Revelation 1:817
225. Isa. 48:1617 He came as a Teacher John 3:2
226. Isa. 49:1 Called from the womb-His humanity Matthew 1:18
227. Isa. 49:5 A Servant from the womb. Luke 1:31Philippians 2:7
228. Isa. 49:6 He will restore Israel Acts 3:19-2115:16-17
229. Isa. 49:6 He is Salvation for Israel Luke 2:29-32
230. Isa. 49:6 He is the Light of the Gentiles John 8:12Acts 13:47
231. Isa. 49:6 He is Salvation unto the ends of the earth Acts 15:7-18
232. Isa. 49:7 He is despised of the Nation John 1:118:48-4919:14-15
233. Isa. 50:3 Heaven is clothed in black at His humiliation Luke 23:4445
234. Isa. 50:4 He is a learned counselor for the weary Matthew 7:2911:2829
235. Isa. 50:5 The Servant bound willingly to obedience Matthew 26:39
236. Isa. 50:6 “I gave my back to the smiters.” Matthew 27:26
237. Isa. 50:6 He was smitten on the cheeks Matthew 26:67
238. Isa. 50:6 He was spat upon Matthew 27:30
239. Isa. 52:7 Published good tidings upon mountains Matthew 5:1215:2928:16
240. Isa. 52:13 The Servant exalted Acts 1:8-11Eph. 1:19-22Php. 2:5-9
241. Isa. 52:14 The Servant shockingly abused Luke 18:31-34Mt. 26:6768
242. Isa. 52:15 Nations startled by message of the Servant Luke 18:31-34Mt. 26:6768
243. Isa. 52:15 His blood shed sprinkles nations Hebrews 9:13-14Rev. 1:5
244. Isa. 53:1 His people would not believe Him John 12:37-38
245. Isa. 53:2 Appearance of an ordinary man Philippians 2:6-8
246. Isa. 53:3 Despised Luke 4:28-29
247. Isa. 53:3 Rejected Matthew 27:21-23
248. Isa. 53:3 Great sorrow and grief Matthew 26:37-38Luke 19:41Heb. 4:15
249. Isa. 53:3 Men hide from being associated with Him Mark 14:50-52
250. Isa. 53:4 He would have a healing ministry Matthew 8:16-17
251. Isa. 53:4 Thought to be cursed by God Matthew 26:6627:41-43
252. Isa. 53:5 Bears penalty for mankind’s iniquities 2Cor. 5:21Heb. 2:9
253. Isa. 53:5 His sacrifice provides peace between man and God Colossians 1:20
254. Isa. 53:5 His sacrifice would heal man of sin 1Peter 2:24
255. Isa. 53:6 He would be the sin-bearer for all mankind 1John 2:24:10
256. Isa. 53:6 God’s will that He bear sin for all mankind Galatians 1:4
257. Isa. 53:7 Oppressed and afflicted Matthew 27:27-31
258. Isa. 53:7 Silent before his accusers Matthew 27:12-14
259. Isa. 53:7 Sacrificial lamb John 1:291Peter 1:18-19
260. Isa. 53:8 Confined and persecuted Matthew 26:47-7527:1-31
261. Isa. 53:8 He would be judged John 18:13-22
262. Isa. 53:8 Killed Matthew 27:35
263. Isa. 53:8 Dies for the sins of the world 1John 2:2
264. Isa. 53:9 Buried in a rich man’s grave Matthew 27:57
265. Isa. 53:9 Innocent and had done no violence Luke 23:41John 18:38
266. Isa. 53:9 No deceit in his mouth 1Peter 2:22
267. Isa. 53:10 God’s will that He die for mankind John 18:11
268. Isa. 53:10 An offering for sin Matthew 20:28Galatians 3:13
269. Isa. 53:10 Resurrected and live forever Romans 6:9
270. Isa. 53:10 He would prosper John 17:1-5
271. Isa. 53:11 God fully satisfied with His suffering John 12:27
272. Isa. 53:11 God’s servant would justify man Romans 5:8-918-19
273. Isa. 53:11 The sin-bearer for all mankind Hebrews 9:28
274. Isa. 53:12 Exalted by God because of his sacrifice Matthew 28:18
275. Isa. 53:12 He would give up his life to save mankind Luke 23:46
276. Isa. 53:12 Numbered with the transgressors Mark 15:27-28Luke 22:37
277. Isa. 53:12 Sin-bearer for all mankind 1Peter 2:24
278. Isa. 53:12 Intercede to God in behalf of mankind Luke 23:34Rom. 8:34
279. Isa. 55:3 Resurrected by God Acts 13:34
280. Isa. 55:4 A witness John 18:37
281. Isa. 55:4 He is a leader and commander Hebrews 2:10
282. Isa. 55:5 God would glorify Him Acts 3:13
283. Isa. 59:16a Intercessor between man and God Matthew 10:32
284. Isa. 59:16b He would come to provide salvation John 6:40
285. Isa. 59:20 He would come to Zion as their Redeemer Luke 2:38
286. Isa. 60:1-3 He would shew light to the Gentiles Acts 26:23
287. Isa. 61:1 The Spirit of God upon him Matthew 3:16-17
288. Isa. 61:1 The Messiah would preach the good news Luke 4:16-21
289. Isa. 61:1 Provide freedom from the bondage of sin John 8:31-36
290. Isa. 61:1-2 Proclaim a period of grace Galatians 4:4-5
291. Jer. 11:21 Conspiracy to kill Jesus John 7:1, Matthew 21:38
292. Jer. 23:5-6 Descendant of David Luke 3:23-31
293. Jer. 23:5-6 The Messiah would be both God and Man John 13:131Ti 3:16
294. Jer. 31:22 Born of a virgin Matthew 1:18-20
295. Jer. 31:31 The Messiah would be the new covenant Matthew 26:28
296. Jer. 33:14-15 Descendant of David Luke 3:23-31
297. Eze.34:23-24 Descendant of David Matthew 1:1
298. Eze.37:24-25 Descendant of David Luke 1:31-33
299. Dan. 2:44-45 The Stone that shall break the kingdoms Matthew 21:44
300. Dan. 7:13-14 He would ascend into heaven Acts 1:9-11
301. Dan. 7:13-14 Highly exalted Ephesians 1:20-22
302. Dan. 7:13-14 His dominion would be everlasting Luke 1:31-33
303. Dan. 9:24 To make an end to sins Galatians 1:3-5
304. Dan. 9:24 To make reconciliation for iniquity Romans 5:102Cor. 5:18-21
305. Dan. 9:24 He would be holy Luke 1:35
306. Dan. 9:25 His announcement John 12:12-13
307. Dan. 9:26 Cut off Matthew 16:2121:38-39
308. Dan. 9:26 Die for the sins of the world Hebrews 2:9
309. Dan. 9:26 Killed before the destruction of the temple Matthew 27:50-51
310. Dan. 10:5-6 Messiah in a glorified state Revelation 1:13-16
311. Hos. 11:1 He would be called out of Egypt Matthew 2:15
312. Hos. 13:14 He would defeat death 1Corinthians 15:55-57
313. Joel 2:32 Offer salvation to all mankind Romans 10:9-13
314. Jonah 1:17 Death and resurrection of Christ Matthew 12:4016:4
315. Mic. 5:2 Born in Bethlehem Matthew 2:1-6
316. Mic. 5:2 Ruler in Israel Luke 1:33
317. Mic. 5:2 From everlasting John 8:58
318. Hag. 2:6-9 He would visit the second Temple Luke 2:27-32
319. Hag. 2:23 Descendant of Zerubbabel Luke 2:27-32
320. Zech. 3:8 God’s servant John 17:4
321. Zech. 6:12-13 Priest and King Hebrews 8:1
322. Zech. 9:9 Greeted with rejoicing in Jerusalem Matthew 21:8-10
323. Zech. 9:9 Beheld as King John 12:12-13
324. Zech. 9:9 The Messiah would be just John 5:30
325. Zech. 9:9 The Messiah would bring salvation Luke 19:10
326. Zech. 9:9 The Messiah would be humble Matthew 11:29
327. Zech. 9:9 Presented to Jerusalem riding on a donkey Matthew 21:6-9
328. Zech. 10:4 The cornerstone Ephesians 2:20
329. Zech. 11:4-6 At His coming, Israel to have unfit leaders Matthew 23:1-4
330. Zech. 11:4-6 Rejection causes God to remove His protection Luke 19:41-44
331. Zech. 11:4-6 Rejected in favor of another king John 19:13-15
332. Zech. 11:7 Ministry to “poor,” the believing remnant Matthew 9:35-36
333. Zech. 11:8 Unbelief forces Messiah to reject them Matthew 23:33
334. Zech. 11:8 Despised Matthew 27:20
335. Zech. 11:9 Stops ministering to those who rejected Him Matthew 13:10-11
336. Zech. 11:10-11 Rejection causes God to remove protection Luke 19:41-44
337. Zech. 11:10-11 The Messiah would be God John 14:7
338. Zech. 11:12-13 Betrayed for thirty pieces of silver Matthew 26:14-15
339. Zech. 11:12-13 Rejected Matthew 26:14-15
340. Zech. 11:12-13 Thirty pieces of silver cast in the house of the Lord Matthew 27:3-5
341. Zech. 11:12-13 The Messiah would be God John 12:45
342. Zech. 12:10 The Messiah’s body would be pierced John 19:34-37
343. Zech. 12:10 The Messiah would be both God and man John 10:30
344. Zech. 12:10 The Messiah would be rejected John 1:11
345. Zech. 13:7 God’s will He die for mankind John 18:11
346. Zech. 13: A violent death Mark 14:27
347. Zech. 13:7 Both God and man John 14:9
348. Zech. 13:7 Israel scattered as a result of rejecting Him Matthew 26:31-56
349. Zech. 14:4 He would return to the Mt. of Olives Acts 1:11-12
350. Mal. 3:1 Messenger to prepare the way for Messiah Mark 1:1-8
351. Mal. 3:1 Sudden appearance at the temple Mark 11:15-16
352. Mal. 3:1 Messenger of the new covenant Luke 4:43
353. Mal. 3:6 The God who changes not Hebrews 13:8
354. Mal. 4:5 Forerunner in spirit of Elijah Mt. 3:1-311:10-1417:11-13
355. Mal. 4:6 Forerunner would turn many to righteousness Luke 1:16-17

Daniel & Revelation-Part 6- Longest Time Prophecy

Then I heard a holy one speaking;…“How long will the vision be, concerning the daily sacrifices and the transgression of desolation, the giving of both the sanctuary and the host to be trampled underfoot?”

And he said to me, “For two thousand three hundred days; then the sanctuary shall be cleansed.”

Daniel 8:13-14


Recap from the last study

See: Daniel and Revelation-Part 5-Longest Time Prophecy-Ram and Goat

In Daniel’s vision, he saw a vicious battle between a ram and a goat.  The two animals are easily identified as the kingdoms of Media-Persia and Greece:

The ram which you saw, having the two horns—they are the kings of  Media and Persia. And the male goat is the kingdom of Greece. The large horn that is between its eyes is the first king.

Daniel 8:20-21

So, there can be no doubt who these animals represent. History has proved the succession of these nations to be absolutely correct. The large horn of the kingdom of Greece is the first king who history has shown to be Alexander the Great.

As the prophecy predicted, Alexander’s great kingdom of Greece was divided into “four notable” generals: Ptolemy Lysimachus, Cassander, and Seleucus.

Then “from out of one of them came a little horn.”  This little horn power represented pagan Rome, the next kingdom in the succession of conquering kingdoms. This power corresponded to the iron legs in the metal image of Daniel 2 and the “dreadful beast” of Daniel 7.

These prophecies of Daniel 2, 7, and 9 are clearly interpreted from God’s own word within each chapter and further confirmed by the historians looking back on that time period.

This little horn now becomes the center of attention of Daniel.  He understood the rise and fall of the nations, but his main focus is on the little horn power and the destructive events at its hand.

The battles and events have been on a horizontal plane up to this point, but now it turns vertical and a spiritual war against the host of heaven.

 And it grew up to the host of heaven, and it cast down some of the host and some of the stars to the ground and trampled them. He even exalted himself as high as the Prince of the host, and by him, the daily sacrifices were taken away, and the place of His sanctuary was cast downBecause of transgression, an army was given over to the horn to oppose the daily sacrifices; and he cast truth down to the ground. He did all this and prospered

Daniel 8: 10-12

This little horn power that “grew up” greatly concerned Daniel.  At this point in his vision, Daniel heard a conversation between the two attending angels:

 Then I heard a holy one speaking; and another holy one said to that certain one who was speaking, “How long will the vision be, concerning the daily sacrifices and the transgression of desolation, the giving of both the sanctuary and the host to be trampled underfoot?

 And he said to me, “For two thousand three hundred days; then the sanctuary shall be cleansed.”

Daniel 8: 13-14

Even the attending angels wanted to know how long this little horn power would rule and wage its war against God’s people and even Jesus Himself (Prince of the host). The chapter ends leaving us in suspense because even though the question about “how long” has been answered as “two thousand three hundred days” we have no idea as to the starting point. Daniel is so troubled by this little horn power that he faints and becomes sick. This time period is the only part of this prophecy not interpreted….at least at this point.

And I, Daniel, fainted and was sick for days; afterward, I arose and went about the king’s business. I was astonished by the vision, but no one understood it.

Daniel 8:27


Daniel’s Prayer

Chapter 8 ends with the words “no one understood it.”  The ram, the goat, the horns were all explained and everyone understood this part, because the angel interpreted the beasts to represent coming kingdoms that would rise and fall.   But the little horn and its time of rule remained mysterious.

Chapter 9 opens with Daniel studying another prophet-Jeremiah. We must remember that Daniel and the Jews were in captivity, but Daniel understood from the book of Jeremiah that their captivity would last 70 years and those 70 years were coming to a close:

“I, Daniel, understood by the books the number of the years specified by the word of the Lord through Jeremiah the prophet, that He would accomplish seventy years in the desolations of Jerusalem.”

Daniel 9: 2

Starting in verse 3, Daniel begins to pray to God in a state of great humility and confession for himself and his people (Jews) who have sinned against God.  Because of this, they did not enjoy the benefits, mercy, and protection God offers to those who keep His covenant and obey His commandments. They were in captivity!

Then I set my face toward the Lord God to make request by prayer and supplications, with fasting, sackcloth, and ashes.  And I prayed to the Lord my God, and made confession, and said, “O Lord, great and awesome God, who keeps His covenant and mercy with those who love Him, and with those who keep His commandments,..

Daniel 9: 3-4

(Note: God’s covenant can be either conditional or unconditional based on the context. In the previous passage, we see that those who love Him and keep His commandments are recipients of His covenant of mercy.)

“As it is written in the Law of Moses, all this disaster has come upon us; yet we have not made our prayer before the Lord our God, that we might turn from our iniquities and understand Your truth.

Daniel 9: 13

Such a great truth!  When we separate ourselves from Him and fail to follow His will, disaster is sure to come. But, through connecting back with this merciful God through prayer and turning from “our iniquities” we can find the path of righteousness and protection for our souls!


As Daniel is praying, Gabriel appears.  He was the angel who interpreted the dream in Chapter 8.  This messenger of God has returned to continue the explanation of the part of the prophecy that concerned Daniel in Chapter 8.

 Now while I was speaking, praying, and confessing my sin and the sin of my people Israel, and presenting my supplication before the Lord my God for the holy mountain of my God, yes, while I was speaking in prayer, the man Gabriel, whom I had seen in the vision at the beginning, being caused to fly swiftly, reached me about the time of the evening offering. And he informed me, and talked with me, and said, “O Daniel, I have now come forth to give you skill to understand. 

Daniel 9: 20-22

 The context of the following time prophecy is with the 2,300 days until the sanctuary will be cleansed. (Daniel 8:14).  Gabriel has come to help him understand the vision.  What vision?  It was the mysterious part of Chapter 8.  All of it was explained except for the little horn that concerned Daniel and the time part of the vision i.e. 2,300 days. We know this to be true because this is what Gabriel explains.

(Note: In our previous study, we determined through comparing Bible passages about time prophecy that a day represents a year. (e.g Numbers 14:34, etc). So we are talking about 2,300 years.


God’s Mercy – Daniel’s People Given Time

Seventy weeks are determined
For your people and for your holy city,
To finish the transgression,
To make an end of sins,
To make reconciliation for iniquity,
To bring in everlasting righteousness,
To seal up vision and prophecy,
And to anoint the Most Holy.”

Daniel 9: 24

Th Greek word chathak word is translated “determined” which means “cut-off” or “marked out” Out of the 2,300 years, 70 weeks are cut-off or marked out for Daniel’s people (Jews). Using the day-year principle of interpretation, The 70 weeks are 490 years (70 X 7).  So out of the 2,300 years, 490 are given to the Jews to complete their purpose as God’s chosen people.  Their purpose was to follow and believe God.  To obey His laws within their heart rather than through legalism. Equally important was to bring in everlasting righteousness and end the vision and prophecy via anointing the Most Holy (Jesus)

But when was the time period to start?  When did the 2,300 days begin as well as these 70 weeks (490 years)? The answer is found in the next verse:

“Know therefore and understand,
That from the going forth of the command
To restore and build Jerusalem
Until Messiah the Prince,
There shall be seven weeks and sixty-two weeks;
The streetshall be built again, and the wall,
Even in troublesome times.”

Daniel 9:29

Here is our starting point for the 2,300 days.  A portion of this time period is allotted or “marked out” for Daniel’s people the Jewish nation.

The starting point is the “command to restore and build Jerusalem.” This was a command still future to Daniel, but we can easily find the time and date of this command from the Bible and history!

This command to restore and build Jerusalem can be found in Ezra Chapter 7 when Artaxerxes gave the commandment in 457 BC. (See the notes at the end)

The Arrival Time of Jesus the Messiah Predicted

Starting with this date, the prophecy is unlocked.  From 457 BC until “Messiah the Prince” would be 69 weeks.  There are 483 days in 69 weeks, but using the day/year principal, we discover that 483 years after 457 BC brings us to 27 AD.  This was the date Jesus was baptized and began his ministry.  The Messiah had arrived right on time! He was “anointed” by the Holy Spirit in the form of a dove.

When He had been baptized, Jesus came up immediately from the water; and behold, the heavens were opened to Him, and Hesaw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and alighting upon Him And suddenly a voice came from heaven, saying, “This is My beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.”

Matthew 3: 16-17

Jesus also announced at the beginning of His ministry this message:

“Jesus came to Galilee, preaching the gospel of the kingdom of God, and saying, The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand. Repent, and believe in the gospel.”

Mark 1: 14, 15

The time of Daniel’s prophecy had been fulfilled. The Messiah the prince came right on schedule…483 years after the commandment to “restore and rebuild Jerusalem.” 

This time prophecy is further confirmed by the words of Paul (A great student of God’s word):

But when the fullness of the time had come, God sent forth His Son

Galatians 4: 4

But the prophecy continues

Jesus Ministry Confirms the Covenant

Jesus’ direct ministry would cover the space of 3 1/2 years. That is half of 7 years or the midst of the week. in 31  AD Jesus died on a cruel cross for us and not for Himself, but Jesus indirect ministry would continue through His disciples for an additional 3 1/2 years.

And after the sixty-two weeks
Messiah shall be cut off, but not for Himself...

…Then he shall confirm a covenant with many for one week;
But in the middle of the week
He shall bring an end to sacrifice and offering.

Daniel 9: 26

Jesus’ message was primarily to the “lost sheep of the house of Israel.” first and foremost.  There are many parables and direct statements of Jesus.  He was “confirming the covenant” as predicted in this Daniel 9 prophecy.  Here is one example:

But He answered and said, “I was not sent except to the lost sheep of the house of Israel.

Matthew 15: 24

To continue with the confirmation of the covenant  God made with “Daniel’s people” (Israel) even after the “Messiah the Prince” had been “cut off,” Jesus gave specific instruction to His disciples before they “preached the gospel in all the world

These twelve Jesus sent out and commanded them, saying: Do not go into the way of the Gentiles and do not enter a city of the Samaritans. But go rather to the lost sheep of the house of Israel

Matthew 10: 5,6

They obeyed the resurrected and ascended Christ by doing this very thing for an additional 3 1/2 years to complete the prophecy to “confirm the covenant for one week” (7 years).

In 34 AD, Stephen was stoned marking the end of the 70 weeks (490 years) cut off from the 2,300 years before the sanctuary would be cleansed.

After that point, the gospel burden went to the Gentiles and those who accepted Christ as the Messiah became the new Israel. Listen to the words of Paul confirming this understanding of the mission of Christ and the fulfillment of the 70-week prophecy:

Then Paul and Barnabas grew bold and said, “It was necessary that the word of God should be spoken to you first; but since you reject it, and judge yourselves unworthy of everlasting life, behold, we turn to the Gentiles.

Acts 13:46

Paul would go on to describe the real nation of Israel and how it is identified:

And if you are Christ’s, then you are Abraham’s seed, and heirs according to the promise.

Galatians 3: 29

 but he is a Jew who is one inwardly; and circumcision is that of the heart, in the Spirit, not in the letter; whose praise is not from men but from God.

Romans 2:29

Let’s review the 70 weeks (490 years) through this simple chart:



Here are the important dates:

  • 457 BC-The commandment by Artaxerxes (Ezra 7: 12-26) to “restore and rebuild Jerusalem
  • 483 years later, “Messiah the Prince” appeared right on time. This was in 27 AD when Jesus was anointed and began his ministry primarily to the nation of Israel
  • In 31 AD, Jesus was crucified (3 1/2 years after his ministry to the house of Israel began)
  • 34 AD marked the end of the 70 weeks (490 years) allotted to the nation of Israel to turn to their God. In this year,  Stephen was stoned and the disciples began to be persecuted. Shortly after, Paul would begin his ministry to the Gentiles. He called himself a preacher to the Gentiles:

 I was appointed a preacher, an apostle, and a teacher of the Gentiles

2 Timothy 1:11

  • 70 weeks (490 years) of the 2300 days (years) are used in this section of the prophecy.  1810 years remains.

1810 years from 34 AD leads us to the year 1844. Daniel was told in the longest time prophecy that at the end of the 2300 days (years) the sanctuary would be “cleansed.”  What doe this mean?  We will let the bible interpreted itself in our next study, but here is a short introduction.

The sanctuary services were instituted by God Himself.  The pattern was given to Moses.  This design is a copy of the heavenly sanctuary. Some might think there is nothing applicable to the Christian since these services ended when Jesus was “cut off” and,

“(brought) an end to sacrifice and offering.

Daniel 9:27

But, as we shall understand next time, Paul dedicated a whole book to the study of the sanctuary and its comparison to the ministry of Jesus in the heavenly sanctuary.  It is the book of Hebrews. If the earthly sanctuary and its services is a shadow of the heavenly sanctuary, then it must foreshadow the work of Jesus there in heaven.  He has gone to “prepare a place for us.”  Does this mean He is a carpenter and building mansions or is He a priest doing a service of preparation for His people?

The old sanctuary service of “cleansing” is a type of resolution and end of the sin issue. By studying closely the sanctuary services, we will see a picture of what God has planned for the return of Jesus and an end of sin which includes the conquering of the last enemy, death.

Moses was divinely instructed when he was about to make the tabernacle. For He said, “See that you make all things according to the pattern shown you on the mountain.”

Hebrews 8:5

And for this reason, He is the Mediator of the new covenant, by means of death, for the redemption of the transgressions under the first covenant, that those who are called may receive the promise of the eternal inheritance.

Hebrews 9:15

Until next time, may the Lord bless and keep you and your family.


Notes on the Ezra dates:

*Notes about the dates described above:

Ezra has three decrees with different dates that could be used.  Nehemiah has a date also.  But the decision as to which one to use, you must keep in mind the key words of the prophecy: “the command to restore and rebuild Jerusalem.”

The four decrees are :
The decree of Cyrus (Ezra 1:1-4)
The decree of Darius I (Ezra 6:1-12)
The decree of Artaxerxes I (Longimanuus) (Ezra 7: 12-26)
The decree of Artaxerxes (Nehemiah Chapters 1 and 2)
Let’s eliminate some of the dates  based on the guiding verse of Daniel 9:25
Ezra 1-gave instruction only for the rebuilding of the temple in Jerusalem. Said nothing about the whole city.  We can eliminate this date.
Ezra 6-simply the endorsement by Darius of the decree of Cyrus.  Only mentions the building of the “house of God.” We can eliminate this date.
Ezra 7 makes provision for complete restoration of the Jewish state, including the right to appoint magistrates and judges, hold trials, and pass and execute sentence upon violators of the own national laws. This is the date that fits the idea of “restoring and rebuilding Jerusalem.” 
Nehemiah 2-Wording has not been preserved but was simply a reinstatement of Artaxerxes original authorization to Ezra recorded in Ezra chapter 7.
Determination of the date of the decree: It was in the seventh year of Artaxerxes’ reign (Ezra 7:7,8)
Biblical evidence for the 457 BC start date:
The dates for Artaxerxes reign are well documented in the ancient sources: Greek historians, Ptolemy’s Canon
The Babylonian business tablets
Elephantine papyri from Egypt
From the above documents, we know that Xerxes was killed in late December of 465 B.C. and the reign of Artaxerxes began at the time.

Artaxerxes Reign

Fall to Fall

First year 464/463 B.C.
Second year 463/462 B.C.
Third year 462/461 B.C.
Fourth year 461/460 B.C.
Fifth year 460/459 B.C.
Sixth year 459/458 B.C.
Seventh year 458/457 B.C.


Therefore, the seventh year of Artaxerxes, according to Jewish reckoning, extended from the fall of 458 to the fall of 457 B. C.