In verses 1-3, Hosea was prophesying that the bulk of the ten tribes would be taken as captives to Assyria, and some would flee to Egypt, where they would be ferreted out and punished. This was the literal, or natural, lesson. In addition, there is the spiritual lesson of the professed Church of Christ going astray into Papacy and the ways of the world. Paganism came into the Church and defiled it. In antitype, the more numerous ten-tribe kingdom pictures Catholicism; the two-tribe kingdom represents Protestantism.
Posts Tagged ‘ King Nebuchadnezzar ’
The setting of this chapter was right after the fulfillment of the 430 (390 + 40) days that Ezekiel lay on his left and right sides. During all that time, his hair grew. Now, at the end of the 430 days, Ezekiel was instructed to cut off all the hair on his head and beard—that was a lot of hair!—and divide it into three parts by carefully weighing it. Ezekiel’s treatment of the hair demonstrated how those of Judah would die in the coming literal siege of Jerusalem, for the hairs represented the people. There was a sufficient quantity of hair to make this demonstration dramatic. Ezekiel ended up bald.
One third of the hair was burned with fire in the midst of Ezekiel’s portrayal of Jerusalem. This action showed that the city would be destroyed by fire and that people would die in the fire. Another third of the hair was chopped with a knife, portraying that people would be slain in the violence of the war. The final third was scattered in the wind. As the hair was scattering, Ezekiel ran after the hair with a sword and slashed at it in the air, showing that people would be pursued and killed as they tried to escape from Jerusalem, ran out for food, or ran out to actively defend the city.
Rabbah’s being burned with fire and becoming a desolate heap had a past fulfillment, but in regard to the future fulfillment of Psalm 83, these terms indicate that Israel’s strike on its Arab neighbors will be decisive. Is there a suggestion here that nuclear power might be used?
In the antitype, Edom pictures Christendom. Just as Esau sold his birthright, the Abrahamic promise, so Catholicism was a golden cup in the hand of the Lord but lost the stewardship because of improper use. True spiritual Israelites inherit the stewardship. Esau (Christendom) will be stripped. In the type, the people tried to hide in rocks and caves, but they were searched out. “He is not” means extinction. Accordingly, the beast and the false prophet will go into Second Death (permanent extinction).
Imagine even the very best of them being like a “brier,” that is, sharp and dangerous! “The day of thy watchmen and thy visitation [punishment—RSV]” was the day of judgment. The prophets were the “watchmen” of the day of trouble. This thought is based on the fact that fortified cities in the past had walls upon which watchmen took turns day and night to look for approaching trouble, enemies, etc. That way the city could always be warned of impending trouble. Similarly, the Lord had some prophets arise late and early to watch over His people, Israel. Warnings were continually given of a coming day of judgment if the people did not repent and change their evil ways. Here Micah said that the day of judgment had come, that the experience was upon them.
In the antitype, Christendom will be in this situation, especially after the Harvest when “summer is ended” and the “salt of the earth” has been taken away (Jer. 8:20; Matt. 5:13). For the most part, no righteous man will remain (except the Great Company, who will not have a stabilizing effect on society).
The angel Gabriel did not interrupt Daniel’s prayer, but when Daniel had finished, Gabriel made him aware of his presence. Daniel looked to see who had touched him and recognized Gabriel as the one who had spoken to him in the previous vision of Chapter 8. In one sense, Chapters 8 and 9 are together—with Part A being the vision and Part B being Daniel’s long prayer.
Gabriel was “caused to fly swiftly” so that he touched Daniel “about the time of the evening oblation,” or 3 p.m. The “evening oblation” is sometimes called the “time of incense” or the “hour of prayer,” an example being when Zacharias, the father of John the Baptist, was praying in the Temple and Gabriel appeared to him (Luke 1:8-11).
Whatever punishment you decree will be a just judgment because the people are not amenable to instruction. They are using your name in vain.” The people did not grieve when they should have grieved, and they refused to receive correction, even though they were punished. Judah and Benjamin should have learned a lesson from the captivity of the ten-tribe kingdom, which had occurred because of hardness of heart. Instead the two tribes manifested the same symptoms of sin and disobedience—a sickness that indicated approaching doom, or death.
When their crops failed and there were other punishments for their waywardness, the people found fault with God and sought solace from false gods. They felt that Jehovah was too harsh and judgmental and did not realize they themselves were the problem.
Ezekiel chapter 17 is the Parable of Two Eagles. The first eagle represents King Nebuchadnezzar who was coming to destroy Israel. The Second eagle represents Egypt, another of the super powers of the day, who Israel was allying herself to.
The call to come out of Babylon is an individual call. For the truth’s sake, one may have to leave his father, mother, sister, brother, friend, or anyone else who stays behind and obey as an individual. Christians get rooted in spiritual Babylon; they are comfortable there with their social friendships that are enjoyable, good, and wholesome for the most part. For one to come out of Babylon means to leave friendships and thus to suffer a loss. Taking a stand and leaving mystic Babylon is very searching. The call is to come out so “that ye be not partakers of her sins, and that ye receive not of her plagues” (Rev. 18:4). To spiritually come out of Babylon is to move from one condition to another. Sometimes very tender ties have to be broken. Then comes the Christian walk, the journeying to “Jerusalem which is above” (Gal. 4:26).
The first chapter of Zephaniah and part of the second chapter speak of the complete desolation that occurred when Nebuchadnezzar invaded the land and left no inhabitants. Although the judgment to occur on the Arabs in the near future will not be utter desolation, there will, nevertheless, be devastating developments to remove the Arab threat. This judgment will solve the problems with Israel’s more local and surrounding enemies, but not with the distant ones, who will be dealt with when God saves the Holy Remnant out of Jacob’s Trouble.