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Friday, November 1, 2019

 

Over the last several weeks our sermon series has been on the feasts of Israel, particularly the “big three” that required a trip to Jerusalem. Jesus became the Lamb that was slain at Passover. The first members of the Church were added as the Holy Spirit was sent to the Earth during the Feast of First Fruits. Sukkot, or the Feast of Booths, has not yet seen a great move of God in the plan of salvation, but the imagery of the great harvest is all throughout scripture, leading me to believe this feast will be significant as we approach the end of the age and the Lord gathers the great harvest he describes in Matthew 13. We also saw that this great day of harvest is the day of the Lord’s return (often called the great day of the Lord in the Old Testament), the resurrection of the Saints, and the day of a great battle between Jesus and those who are determined to deprive Him of His rightful throne.
 

In my own faith journey, when I started studying the end of the age in scripture the whole story of salvation began to make sense. I realized I had been trying to force scriptures that spoke of the complete work of salvation into my incomplete bubble of understanding. When I saw and believed all God has said He is going to do through Jesus Christ I became much more settled in my faith. Suddenly, Revelation was no longer a cryptic book of mystery, but a gathering (By the Holy Spirit, not by John) of existing biblical imagery describing the end of the age. For those of you wanting to learn more, I am including a reading list below where you can find imagery of the end of the age echoed throughout scripture.
 

Old Testament

Psalms

Psalms 2 – A picture of kings of earth gathered against the messiah.

Psalm 47 – A celebration. The Messiah has put all kings under His authority. Notice the mention of trumpets again.

Psalm 110 – The reign of the Messiah.

Isaiah – Generally speaking, the prophet Isaiah’s words from the Lord are full of messianic imagery. Isaiah sees clearly the grace offered us through the cross, and the complete salvation accomplished by Christ’s own hand on what he calls the “Day of the Lord”. Many images appear in Revelation as well.

Is 2 – A description of the “Latter days”.

Is 13 – The tribulation, lots of imagery repeated in Jesus’ teachings and Revelation.

Is 24 – Tribulation imagery, imagery repeated in the bowl judgement of Revelation.

Is 25 – The restoration of all things. Death swallowed up, the wedding supper of the lamb.

Is 27 – Slaying the beast, the great harvest.

Is 40:1-5 – Shaking of the earth followed by the glory of the Lord being revealed.

Is 60 – Imagery of the kingdom after Jesus takes His throne.

Is 63 – The day of the Lord’s vengeance.

Is 64 – A prayer for the Messiah to return.

Is 65:17-25 – New heavens and a new Earth. Quoted in Rev 21:1-4

Is 66 – Final judgment, new Jerusalem.

 

Jeremiah 50-52: The destruction of Babylon. Many images appear in Revelation and Jesus’ teachings on the end of the age.

Ezekiel

37: Resurrection

38-39: The great battle, Gog and Magog, echoed in Rev 20.

43:1-7 – The return of Jesus to reign

47: Very similar language to Rev 22 and the tree of life.

Daniel – There are several important chapters in Daniel, but many of the prophesies are full of vague details that make the story line difficult to follow. Chapter 12 does have some fairly straightforward imagery of the tribulation and resurrection.

Joel: Chapters 2 and 3 are full of imagery that echoes in many places. The day of the Lord, trumpets, judgments, harvest, etc.

Zechariah – Honestly, the whole book. Zechariah is the Revelation of the Old Testament.

NEW TESTAMENT

Matthew 13 – The parable of the weeds

Matthew 24, Mark 13, Luke 17 all echo the same teaching about the signs of the end of the age.

1 Cor 15 – One of the richest chapters teaching about the resurrection of the dead.

1 Thess 4-5 – Paul teaches Christians about the return of Jesus.

2 Thess 1-2 – More end of the age, return of Christ teaching.

Revelation – Obviously… I would recommend reading Revelation after getting familiar with these other chapters. I think you will see Revelation looks a lot more organized when the imagery is not so foreign. I found a short study guide written by Mike Bickle to be very helpful to understand the flow of the book (Revelation Study Guide, ISBN 0982326203).

 

Blessings on your study and your week!

-Pastor Matt

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