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Is. 65:17-20

6/29/13 V. 17, This promise of creating a new heavens and a new earth John, in Rev 21:1-5, sees in vision being fulfilled. The former things, particularly sin, God again promises, will pass away forever.

V. 18, For eternity we will be filled with gladness and joy at God’s new creation because God originally created us for joy and gladness in him. Rev 11:15-18 and 19:1-6, examples of this rejoicing, are cross-referenced with this verse.

V. 19, God himself will also rejoice and be glad in us. Nowhere in all of God’s vast creation will there be sorrow and weeping, which reminds us of the promises to wipe away every tear Rev 7:17 , 19:1, and 21:4. And this is in contrast to Babylon, in Rev 18:22-23, where the merchants weep and mourn over her and it is promised that the sound of music and the voice of celebration “will never be heard in her again.”

V. 20, Clearly the preceding verses deal with the end of time from our perspective, but had Israel fulfilled the purpose for which God had predestined it, these preceding promises would have been fulfilled to great degree even before the Second Coming.

This verse shows some of the things that would have come about had Israel remained faithful. Infant mortality would have disappeared. No one would die accidentally, and instead everyone will be able to live a full life of at least 100 years.

Even though this promise was not fulfilled, God’s promises always come to pass eventually. And this promise will not only be fulfilled but will be fulfilled on an even grander scale because we shall live forever, reigning with God (Rev 11:15, 22:5).

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Posted by on June 29, 2013 in Uncategorized

 

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Is. 65:15-16

6/28/13 V. 15, Throughout eternity this time of evil will not be forgotten, and the name of the wicked will live on as a curse. They will be destroyed by God. However, the people of God shall receive new names (Rev 3:12).

Names in Scripture are often connected character. In Rev 14:1 and 22:4 we see that they have the Father’s name written on their foreheads. In other words, God’s people have become in character like God. We were, after all, originally created in his image.

The wicked, on the other hand, have the name of the beast on their foreheads and hands (Rev 13:16, 14:9).

V. 16, In the new earth there will not be any of the former evil. Everyone who blesses or swears (makes an oath or promise) will do so in the God of “amen.” It’s possible that this is judgment language, which would tie in with Rev 20:4 where God’s people are given judgment and reign with God.

Even though the time of evil will never be forgotten (we will always have the scars of Jesus, after all) the former troubles will be forgotten. In other words, we will be heal and the former things will not continue to cause us pain. These things will be hidden by God himself.

 
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Posted by on June 28, 2013 in Uncategorized

 

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Is. 60:6-9

5/27/13 V. 6, The abundance of wealth and prosperity to be given over to the people of God is illustrated in terms of the wealth of Isaiah’s day: camels, gold, frankincense, flocks and herds of animals. And everyone will talk of the good news of God’s salvation and sing their praises to the Lord (Rev 5:9-10, 7:9-12).

V. 7, In an OT setting masses of sheep for sacrifices at the temple were a symbol of prosperity and gratitude to God for that prosperity. For instance, the number of sacrifices made by Solomon at the dedication of the temple were specifically counted and noted because of the greatness of the gift to the Lord. In a NT this doesn’t necessarily mean that there will be a reinstatement of the sacrifices, but it still serves as a literary device to illustrate the worship that will be directed to God.

V. 8, Those who have been loyal to the Lord will come together like a great flock of birds in number (Rev 7:9). Perhaps this is even a hint of being able to fly in the new earth?

V. 9, The islands (a symbol of God’s people) wait for their deliverance (LXX: have waited). The ships of Tarshish would likely represent the bearers of the wealth of the nations that has been promised to the redeemed. And the first to be brought will be the sons from afar (see v. 4). And thus God will glorify his redeemed people. We who have been humbled will finally be exalted, just as God promised.

 
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Posted by on May 27, 2013 in Uncategorized

 

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Is. 57:17-21

5/20/13 V. 17, It is, among other issues, the greed of his people that leads us to cheating and other methods of enriching ourselves at other’s expense that makes God so angry that he has punished us. His punishment is the hiding of his face, which is to say that he distances himself from us. Separation from God is what brings on the consequences of our path of wickedness.

The problem is that we don’t recognize the problem. We don’t see that our ways are separating us from God. So we keep on turning away from him in our hearts.

V. 18, But in spite of knowing the wickedness of our ways, God, in his great mercy, has plans to heal us (Rev 22:2), to lead us back to himself, to restore the comfort of a close relationship with him. And we will no longer weep (Rev 7:17).

V. 19, Instead, we will praise the goodness of our God. God has ordered peace for his people when he heals us. And healing is what we need, because we have been so damaged by sin.

V. 20, For the wicked who refuse to be healed, because that is an option, they are doomed to continuing to a tempestuous life of stress, anger, hate, immorality, and all manner of spiritual garbage and mud. In the words of Rev 14:11, “they have no rest day or night…”

V. 21, So long as they live the wicked will never have peace. We must understand that if we do not have peace in our hearts it’s precisely because we still have wickedness within us that needs to be healed by God.

 
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Posted by on May 20, 2013 in Uncategorized

 

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Is. 49:19-23

4/25/13 V. 19, Where once the land of God’s Servant was a desolate, empty wilderness, God will make it such a place that will support many people, and our enemies will be far away.

V. 20, The children who have been taken from us in death will be restored and there will be so many that they will need more room. This isn’t to say that the life God has planned will be insufficient. It’s hyperbole to make the point of abundance of the things most precious.

V. 21, And when God’s people are so blessed we will in effect shake our heads in wonder and ask, “Where did all these children come from? This isn’t my life! I’ve lost my children. I’m an exile, a lonely wonderer. How did this come to me?” God has wonderful things in store for his people.

V. 22, God has promised that he will finally end this terrible reign of evil. He will hold up his hand and halt sin. This planet will once again become fully part of his kingdom and his will will be supreme. And when that happens the children we have lost will be carried to us by “the nations.” Who these nations include I suppose we can’t be sure. But we can know that they are not the enemies of God’s people. They will be those loyal to God. So angels, inhabitants of other worlds, and so on are the logical ones to assume.

V. 23, Kings will help with the children, princesses will be nurses. Again, this is hyperbole. These unfallen beings will bow before us in respect for what we have been through.

And we will not have any room for self-pride, because we will recognize that our Lord is the one who has carried us through. If we will depend on him, waiting for his time, we will be glorified with him beyond any glory we can imagine. Incredible promises!

 
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Posted by on April 25, 2013 in Uncategorized

 

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Is. 47:1-7

4/16/13 V. 1, Babylon is personified as a young woman who will be humiliated. Babylon conquering Jerusalem was God’s judgment upon Jerusalem for their disloyalty to him, but Babylon went farther than God intended in its cruelty to Israel. Therefore, God cast judgment upon Babylon. This will be further explained in v. 6.

Babylon and Tyre are code words in Revelation for the religious power at the end of time that will persecute God’s people just before the perousia. See Rev 14:8, 17:5, 18:2.

In Revelation there are two women, or more accurately, there is one woman who becomes two women. She begins pure and holy but then apostatizes and becomes a spiritual prostitute. She represents the people of God who become disloyal to him. Those who remain loyal are represented by the pure woman while those who are disloyal are represented by the prostitute.

Each of the women have children. In Rev 12:17 the children of the pure woman are the remnant who keep the commandments and have the testimony of Jesus. In Rev 2:20-23 the children of Jezebel (a different symbol for Babylon) are those involved in sexual (spiritual) immorality. In other words, they are disloyal to God.

This is the group in view here. In the OT prophets sexual immorality is constantly a symbol of spiritual unfaithfulness to God. The daughter of Babylon, thought she claimed to sit as queen (Rev 18:7) would be dethroned and cast to the ground.

V. 2-3, She would instead become a slave at the millstone grinding meal, and humiliated with nakedness. Since it’s a religious system that is being represented in Revelation, obviously the nakeness is a symbol of vulnerability, humiliation, loss of power, etc. And this would all be the result of God working against her (Rev 16:19, 18:5-20) in vengeance for what she has done to his loyal people (Rev 6:9-10).

V. 4, This is the word of the Lord whose word never fails.

V. 5, This woman would be sent into darkness, a spiritual wilderness, and would no longer have her kingdom (Rev 17:3-5, 18, 18:7-19, 21-24).

V. 6, Yes, God had been rightfully angry with his people because of their unfaithfulness to him. So he cursed them. He gave them over to the conquering power of false religion, and that power then went on to draw God’s people into deeper and deeper apostasy.

V. 7, And she wrongly thought that by her own power she was able to rule the nations around her, not remembering or even realizing that it was God who had engineered these circumstances. So like Nebuchadnezzar of physical Babylon who claimed that he had built this great city by his own power and might, she claimed and one day will again claim that she will be queen forever (Rev 18:7).

 
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Posted by on April 16, 2013 in Uncategorized

 

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Is. 44:1-5

4/7/13 V. 1, Although, for the sake of discipline and purification God allows his people to face severe suffering at the hands of their enemies, he is does not give us up. He has chosen his elect.

V. 2, He made us, formed us from the beginning, and therefore he cares deeply for us and will help us. For those who are faithful to him we need not fear. Jacob means deceiver, Jeshurun, we’re fairly certain, means upright one. There is a contract between what we were and what we become in relationship with God.

V. 3, Living water is a persistent theme for God. In Rev 7:16, when God finally rescues his people, we will never again thirst spiritually speaking because we will be able to drink freely from the water of life (Rev 21:6, 22:17). But this living water isn’t just an eventual reality. Jesus promised the woman at the well that he would give her living water as soon as she asked for it. The way he would do that is the same way he will do it today if we ask for it. He will pour out his Spirit on us. This is spiritual water, rain.

V. 4, The result of this life-giving water is that we will spring up like green grass and healthy trees. Often in scripture grass and trees are a symbol of people loyal to God (i.e. Rev 9:4), and in Revelation when we see grass and trees being burned and such like in Rev 8:7 it’s a picture of spiritual thirst, the Spirit of God not being poured out, and the world suffering in this spiritual drought.

V. 5, When the living water is poured out on us we will bear the Lord’s name and the name of his church with pride and honor.

 
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Posted by on April 7, 2013 in Uncategorized

 

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