Rightly Dividing the Word of Truth
Introduction to the book of Revelation
Always remember it’s all about what this book says.
Let’s go to Daniel chapter nine.
Here we find the outline of the end of prophecy as it relates to the Jewish Program; but remember the gentile race will not be excluded from God’s judgment.
(The Archangel) Gabriel Brings an Answer
20: Now while I (Daniel) was speaking and praying, and confessing my sin and the sin of my people Israel, and presenting my supplication before the LORD my God in behalf of the holy mountain of my God,
21: while I was still speaking in prayer, then the man Gabriel, whom I had seen in the vision previously, came to me in my extreme weariness about the time of the evening offering.
22: He gave me instruction and talked with me and said, “O Daniel, I have now come forth to give you insight with understanding.
23: “At the beginning of your supplications the command was issued (Who issued this command? God did), and I (Archangel Gabriel) have come to tell you, for you are highly esteemed (or anointed); so give heed to the message and gain understanding of the vision.
Seventy Weeks and the Messiah
24: “Seventy weeks (490 years) have been decreed for your people (the Jews) and your holy city, to finish the transgression…
Some Bible translations have the word “rebellion” instead of“transgression;” either will work.
This speaks of sin!
Sometimes you need to park on a Bible verse; and this is one.
Please open your Bibles to Micah chapter one at verse five.
Since this is a Bible study, we are allowed to ask questions; and seek answers.
Why 490 years; and where did this number come from?
And what exactly was this transgression (or sin) the Jews committed?
You know you need look no further than this book for the answer.
For Scripture interprets Scripture.
Around the year 920 BC Israel was in an apostate condition (Renounced Jehovah God).
The nation of Israel is divided between the ten tribes to the north, its kingdom being located in Samaria, and two tribes, plus the Levites, to the south where the Temple and Jerusalem were located.
Micah predicted the fall of her capital, Samaria (Northern nation) and also foretold the inevitable desolation of Judah. (Southern nation)
Several significant historical events occurred during this period:
In 734-732 BC, Tiglath-Pileser III of Assyria led a military campaign against Aram (Syria), Philistia and parts of Israel and Judah. Ashkelon and Gaza were defeated. Judah, Ammon, Edom and Moab paid tribute to the Assyrian king, but Israel did not fare as well. According to 2 Kings 15:29, the northern kingdom lost most of its territory, including all of Gilead and much of Galilee.
Damascus fell in 732 and was annexed to the Assyrian empire.
In 722-721 Samaria fell, and the northern kingdom of Israel was conquered by Assyria.
In 712 King Sargon II of Assyria captured Ashdod (see Isaiah 20:1).
In 701 Judah joined a revolt against Assyria and was overrun by King Sennacherib and his army, though Jerusalem was spared.
So, this was the political climate at that time.
Both the Northern tribes and the Southern tribes of Israel were warring with their enemies and losing. Where is their Protector? Where is Jehovah?
Jehovah’s relationship with the nation of Israel is “conditional.”
5: “Now then, if (small word “if” but it means so much) you will indeed obey My voice and keep My covenant, then you (The nation of Israel) shall be My own possession among all the peoples, for all the earth is Mine…;”
What caused their fall from Grace? Disobedience!
How were they disobedient?
What is the very first commandment?
3: “You shall have no other gods before Me.
4: “You shall not make for yourself an idol, or any likeness of what is in heaven above or on the earth beneath or in the water under the earth.
5: “You shall not worship them or serve them; for I, the LORD your God, am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers on the children, on the third and the fourth generations of those who hate Me,
6: but showing lovingkindness to thousands, to those who love Me and keep My commandments.
I reason since this is the first commandment, it sets the tone for those which follow; and its position in relation to the other nine signifies its importance.
5: All this (turmoil and God’s punishment) is for the rebellion (sin) of Jacob And for the (What’s the next word) sins of the house of Israel. What is the rebellion (sin) of Jacob? Is it not Samaria? What is the high place of Judah? Is it not Jerusalem?
What is this “rebellion?” Is it not something extremely grievous?
Samaria and Jerusalem, the principal cities, are infected with idolatry.
Each has its idol worship, in opposition to the worship of the true God.
Idolatry was practiced by the elders of Israel, even in the Temple of Jehovah.
(Please read Ezekiel 8). As the royal cities in both kingdoms gave the example of gross idolatry, no wonder that it spread through the whole land, both of Israel and Judah. And here is the key to the prophecy God gave Daniel in regard to these 490 years:
Israel did not repent of their sin of idolatry; so these 490 years of punishment were added to their infamy, according to the Mosaic Law.
God has neither forgotten nor rejected His Elect.
Jewish prophecy will be fulfilled.
A Jewish remnant will be saved.
The nation of Israel will experience these last seven prophetical years.
The Lord Jesus Christ is the Victor
(To be continued)
By: GJ Heitzman