OBADIAH – There is just one short chapter to this book, and little is known about the Prophet himself. The name means Servant of Yahveh, or worshiper of Yahveh. There are at least twelve men mentioned in the Old Testament who bear this name. However, our only concern here is with the Prophet himself.
The main theme of his writing is the punishment to come upon Edom, a heathen neighbor of Judah. Edom in this book seems to be a type of Christendom, particularly here in the end of the Age. There is wide difference of opinion on the time that the Prophet lived, some contending that he lived before the conquest of Judah by Nebuchadnezzar in the Fall of 607 BC. Others, with equal vigor, place it after that date. Some capable men think it is about the fifth century BC because it foretells the imminent destruction of Edom as a nation – about the time of Malachi.
Obadiah uses some of the identical phrases to be found in Isaiah, which would prove only that he was quite familiar with the writings of the major prophet. It is the shortest book of the Old Testament, consisting of but one chapter of 21 verses; and is marked by vigorous poetic language. Much of the prophecy consists of God’s own words to personified Edom, which feature gives a direct and personal quality to the book. He uses striking comparisons. He says that the fatness of Edom is like an eagle’s nest high up on the mountain; the plunderers of Edom are compared to night thieves. Edom’s crimes are listed in order in verses 10‑14; and the destruction is sure to come, even as Israel is to be fully restored after the establishment of the Kingdom of God.
The entire prophecy derives its incentive and strength from the great Truth, clearly discerned by other holy men of God, that the Day of Jehovah is coming upon all nations (vs. 15) to the destruction of every foe, native and foreign, of God’s rule on earth and the Kingdom shall be the Lord Jehovah ‘s. The prophecy is very generally ascribed by most capable writers to the Chaldean period, when Jerusalem was alternately subject to the king of Egypt and the king of Babylon, and was finally captured by Nebuchadnezzar in the Fall of 607 BC, at which time the Temple was razed to the ground, and its inhabitants carried into captivity to Babylon ‑ where they remained for threescore and ten years. (2 Chron. 36:21)
At that time Edom (type of Christendom) was severely criticized by the prophets of that era, because Edom gave its sympathy to the Chaldeans. Thus the prophecy in the place it occupies in the Bible has no relation to the date of its composition, which, as we have stated, is not clearly given anywhere in the Bible or in secular history. It should be emphasized here that Obadiah does not stress the fall of Jerusalem, the burning of the Temple, the razing of the walls, and the annihilation of the city.
The hostile attitude of Edom had been of long standing (in the antitype it occupied the major years of the Gospel Age) and the feeling against Edom had been voiced by Amos more than a century before the Chaldean invasion. Jerusalem had been plundered by the Egyptians in the time of Rehoboam (1 Kings 14:25, 26), by Arabians and Philistines in the reign of Jehoram (2 Chron. 21:16, 17); and in the reign of Amaziah, who slaughtered the Edomites, the king of Israel entered Jerusalem, broke down the wall of the city, plundered the Temple and palace, and carried off hostages. (2 Kings 14:13, 14; 2 Chron. 25:11, 12, 23, 24) These events may have instigated Edom’s unbrotherly spirit, which Obadiah rebukes.
It is not our wish to discuss every line in this prophecy, but a few excerpts may prove helpful: verse 15 tells us that “the day of the Lord is near.” Considering the fact that this prophecy was written some 2,500 years ago it seems far away. However, when we reckon time from God’s standpoint, then it is near: “A thousand years in thy sight are but as yesterday when it is past, and as a watch in the night.” (Psa. 90:4) Viewing it in this broad sense, 2,500 years would be but 21 days. Even we would consider such a stupendous matter as near if it were stated as just 21 days. Then verse 16 states that the heathen (all incorrigible unbelievers) “shall be as though they had not been.” And this is very directly stated concerning Babylon the Great: “Thus with violence shall the great city Babylon be thrown down, and shall be found no more at all.” (Rev. 18:21) In almost all civilized countries today – and in many heathen countries the violent are presently resorting to violence. “There was no peace to him that went out, nor to him that came in.” (2 Chron. 15:5) So we need not say “the Day of the Lord is near.” We may say, it is here; and this is our strong assurance ‑ that the Kingdom is knocking at the door. In Acts 3:21 it is recorded that “the times of restitution of all things [the Kingdom] which God hath spoken by the mouth of all His holy prophets” shall come; and, since Obadiah is one of the holy prophets, we should logically expect to find where he had also spoken about it; and so we do find: “Saviors shall come up on Mount Zion; and the kingdom shall be the Lord’s.” (verse 21) And may our readers lift up their heads and rejoice as we ponder that great Kingdom which lies just ahead of us in the immediate future.
There is very little record of Micah’s life other than in the Scriptures. One authority says that Micah lived in Judah, but he prophesied for Israel as well as Judah. It is thought that the latter part of the prophecy belongs to the reign of Manasseh. The prophecy consists of four discourses. The sins of Micah’s time were of the most flagrant nature. The people were misled by deceivers, the poor were ground under the heel of oppressors. The prophet’s deep sympathy with those who are wronged, and his indignation against those who exercise cruelty give us a picture of the condition of the day.
Micah is one of the holy prophets mentioned in Acts 3:21 who prophesied of the “Restitution of all things” in Messiah’s Kingdom. He emphasizes the fact that Messiah is the hope of the world. Education, culture, legislation, politics, cannot save the world. In the shifting of foundations, the breaking up of the moral, religious and social orders, with growing disintegration, the hope of the world is the Messianic Kingdom in which His redeeming power shall extend from pole to pole.
“The word of the Lord that came to Micah the Morasthite in the days of Jotham, Ahaz and Hezakiah, kings of Judah, which he saw concerning Samaria and Jerusalem. Hear, all ye people; hearken, O earth, and all that therein is: and let the Lord God be witness against you, the Lord from His holy temple.” (1:1, 2)
“Woe to them that devise iniquity, and work evil upon their beds! when the morning is light, they practice it, because it is in the power of their hand.” (2:1) “The heads thereof judge for reward, and the priests thereof teach for hire, and the prophets thereof divine for money: yet will they lean upon the Lord, and say, Is not the Lord among us? no evil can come upon us.” (3:11)
This not only has application to Israel at that time, but also to Christendom of our day. “They all look to their own way, every one for his gain, from his quarter.” (Isa. 56:11) That Servant tells us: “With honors and titles go salaries, not according to the minister’s needs, but on the commercial basis of his ability to attract large congregations and wealthy people.” (F‑286)
“But in the last days it shall come to pass, that the mountain of the house of the Lord shall be established in the top of the mountains, and it shall be exalted above the hills; and people shall flow unto it.” (4:1) “Hear ye now what the Lord saith; Arise, contend thou before the mountains [kingdoms], and let the hills hear thy voice. Hear ye, O mountains, the Lord’s controversy, and ye strong foundations of the earth: for the Lord hath a controversy with his people [with His professed people], and he will plead with Israel. O my people, what have I done unto thee? and wherein have I wearied thee? testify against me. For I brought thee up out of the land of Egypt, and redeemed thee out of the house of servants; and I sent before thee Moses, Aaron, and Miriam.” (6:1‑4)
“Who is a God like unto thee, that pardoneth iniquity, and passeth by the transgressions of the remnant of his heritage? he retaineth not his anger forever, because he delighteth in mercy. He will turn again, he will have compassion upon us; he will subdue our iniquities; and thou wilt cast all their sins into the depths of the sea. Thou wilt perform the truth to Jacob [Israel], and the mercy to Abraham, which thou hast sworn unto our fathers from the days of old.” (7:18‑20)
The following by That Servant is a beautiful picture of the Messianic Kingdom:
“The Kingdom Of Peace – ‘Nation shall not lift up sword against nation, neither shall they learn war anymore.’ (Micah 4:3) The whole world has for a long time been boasting that civilization and Christianity have won the day, that the world has become God’s Empire and that the blessings of the Millennium are ours to enjoy. Aid Conferences and Peace Councils and Peace Commissions have flared up for the moment only to die down. The cry of ‘Peace, peace,’ has brought no peace. We are beginning to see that we have been deceiving ourselves into thinking that the nations of the earth are kingdoms of God. We are beginning to see that the Bible styles them ‘kingdoms of this world,’ kingdoms of the Gentiles, and that it tells us that ‘the Prince of this world, who now worketh in the hearts of the children of disobedience,’ is Satan, the usurper, ‘a liar from the beginning and abode not in the truth.’
“We see it all. The kingdom of God, the kingdom of heaven, for which the Master taught us to pray, has not yet come. We are glad, however, that the Divine promise assures us that it will come and explains to us that the All‑Wise Creator is now, first of all, preparing for His Kingdom by gathering from amongst mankind a worthy, saintly few, to be associates of their King and Redeemer in that Kingdom of glory, by which the world will be blessed.
“But all are not yet convinced of these Bible truths. Some point to the coins of the various kingdoms, which declare that ‘In God we trust,’ and that the several emperors and kings of the earth are reigning ‘by the grace of God’ and claiming that they are of Divine appointment; while the Pope also makes the still greater claim that he is the personal representative of Messiah and His Kingdom and the only one authorized to reign over and govern the kings of the earth.
“To convince the more prejudiced nothing further should be necessary along these lines than to point out the difference between present conditions and those which the Scriptures declare will prevail when He who redeemed the world by the sacrifice of Himself will take His great power and reign as Messiah, the King of glory, to put down sin in its every form and death in its every form and release and uplift all the willing and obedient of the families of the earth ‑ including those who have gone down into the great prison‑house of death ‑ the grave, sheol, hades.” (Reprint 4795, cols. 1, 2)
“Pray For Messiah’s Kingdom – The hope for humanity is the Messianic Kingdom. The ‘mountain of the Lord’s house’ signifies the kingdom of God’s house, His Church. It will be established in the top of, or above the kingdoms of the world. It will be exalted amongst the nations and all the peoples will flow to it. There will be an attraction in it for all peoples. It will lead them to climb upward. The attraction which will thus draw mankind will be the blessings of health and restitution, which the kingdom will be prepared to grant to all peoples as they shall come into harmony with its requirements. (Acts 3:19‑23)
“That kingdom will be closely identified with the Zionist movement and the Holy Land. The Kingdom itself will be spiritual, invisible to men, but its earthly agents will be visible and they will be Jewish – ‘Ye shall see Abraham, Isaac and Jacob and all the prophets in the kingdom,’ etc. (Matt. 8:11) The Jews, already impulsed toward the Land of Promise, will go thither in increasing numbers, and all of the faithful of them will go in sympathy and representatively, through financial assistance. The Israelitish hopes and promises will attract that number strongly first. And gradually all the nations, learning of the Grace of God, and the blessings of restitution to be bestowed, will say, ‘Come, let us go up to the Mountain of the Lord and to the house of the God of Jacob; and he will teach us [as well as the Jews] of his ways and we will walk in his paths. For out of Zion shall go forth the Law and the Word of Jehovah from Jerusalem.’ (Isa. 2:3; Micah 4:2)
“Micah 4:3 tells of how Messiah’s judgments will be manifested, favoring most the nations which are most righteous and rebuking all unrighteousness. The effect will be that wars will cease. The metal previously used in weapons of destruction will be used in plowshares and pruning hooks. The earth shall no longer be soaked with human blood, but be tilled for the blessing of the race, with none to molest nor make afraid. The Lord’s people, at the beginning of that time, are represented as saying, Let each follow his own conception of God, but Israel must follow Jehovah. And at that time He will assemble her and gather her back into her own land – ‘a remnant.’ Then the Lord shall reign for the blessing and uplifting of all the willing and obedient.” (Reprint 4796 ‑ April 1, 1911)
LAST OF THE MINOR PROPHETS
MALACHI – Jesus said that John the Baptist was the last of the Old Testament prophets. (Luke 16:16) While John was the last of the Old Testament prophets, he did not contribute anything to the Old Testament section of our Bible. But Malachi did. His is the last book of that part of the Scripture, so it is he we are now discussing.
But Malachi, like the other lesser lights, leaves us very little about himself. It is not definitely known that Malachi was his real name, although there is some indication that his name as we know it is correct. It means “my angel,” or “my messenger,” or it may be obtained from the name Malachiah, which means “the messenger of Jehovah.” Others such as he have been described by various words, such as Prophet and Seer; and in 1 Chron. 29:29 these words are used to designate them. Malachi designates himself as Jehovah’s Messenger, which indeed he was; and he appeared on the scene between the time of the return from Babylon and about 400 years before Jesus Himself came in His first advent. And Jesus tells us that John terminated the old order, and introduced the new, when he baptized Jesus in the River Jordan.
Malachi came at a time when the religious enthusiasm had again sunk to a very low ebb, and the sharp reproofs of the Prophet are thus hurled at them. Mixed marriages seem to have become common practice at that time. (Mal. 2:10‑12) In this text “the daughter of a strange God” simply means a woman of foreign or strange religion. And this transgression had become so widespread that the earlier code of Moses and other faithful servants of the past had been just about forgotten.
The priests themselves had also fallen far from the pristine religion of “the fathers.” They were even accused of offering polluted bread as a sacrifice; the blind, the halt, the maimed (1:8) were readily offered in the place of a sacrifice which was to be “without blemish.” They robbed God with their tithes and offerings.
The Book falls easily into two parts: the first two chapters deal with the sins of Israel, and the last two with the blessings that will come to those who try earnestly to correct these maladies. The third chapter begins with a description of “my messenger,” the “one whom ye delight in,” referring, of course, to the expected Messiah. Then 3:2 raised the question, “Who may abide the day of his coming?” His coming? (His parousia, or presence) Then, “Who shall stand when he appeareth?” (maketh manifest – in the great time of trouble) In the Greek New Testament this word ‘appeareth’ refers to His epiphaneia, or bright shining, which the watchers are well able to understand.
At the time of Malachi the people had come to that doleful condition that caused them to feel that the true worship and service of God had become vain and useless; but of the few who held true religion, the promises are warm and glowing. “And they shall be mine, saith the Lord, in that day when I make up my jewels [in this present ‘day of the Lord’]; and I will spare them, as a man spareth his own son that serveth him.” (3:17) To them “The Sun of Righteousness shall arise, with healing in his wings” (4:2), then shall the wicked be as ashes under their feet.
Malachi 4:5 offers a glowing picture: “I will send you Elijah the prophet before the coming of the great and dreadful day of the Lord.” This Elijah has been the true church militant during the entire Gospel Age; and they have earnestly tried to convert the world, although their efforts have resulted in failure. But their effort has not been a complete failure. In those countries where the Christian religion has been preached there has been much uplift; and the promise has been fulfilled, “The entrance of thy word giveth light; it giveth understanding unto the simple.” (Psa. 119:130)
Malachi’s prophecy offers strong rebuke for the sins of the Jews at the time it was written, but it applies with equal and more elevating force of blessing to those who keep God’s law. The condemnation applied well to the disobedient Jews of that time: “They made their hearts as an adamant stone, lest they should hear the law, and the words which the Lord of hosts hath sent in his spirit by the former prophets.” (Zech. 7: 12) Like all the other Old Testament prophets, Malachi predicts the Kingdom; and he does this in very glowing and enticing words – words that are highly figurative, but offer inspirational reading to all who understand and believe them.
In the foregoing we have offered generalities on the four major and twelve minor prophets of the Old Testament, and we repeat once more the words of 2 Peter 1:19‑21: “We have a more sure word of prophecy; whereunto ye do well that you take heed, as unto a light that shineth in a dark place... For the prophecy came not in old time by the will of man; but holy men of God spake as they were moved by the holy spirit.”
We will now quote verses of the four major prophets with bracketed comments. We begin with ISAIAH: Chap. 2:2 – “It shall come to pass in the last days, that the mountain [the house of Jehovah] shall be established in the top of [overtopping or overruling] the mountains [all earthly kingdoms], and shall be exalted above the hills [the lesser forms of earthly governments, such as the United States, Great Britain, etc.]; and all nations [strong and weak] shall flow unto it.”
ISAIAH 4:1, 2 – “In that day [the Day of the Lord, in which we are now living] seven women [all the false church systems that go to make up Babylon – confusion] shall take hold of one man [the glorified Christ], saying, we will eat our own bread [teach and preach our own erroneous doctrines], and wear our own apparel [parade in our own flaunted righteousness, instead of that of their leader Jesus Christ, the Righteous]: only let us be called by thy name [called Christians], to take away our reproach [that we are not true Christians]. In that day [in the Kingdom] shall the Branch of the Lord [“I am the vine, ye are the branches” – John 15:5] be beautiful and glorious [“then shall the righteous shine forth as the sun in the kingdom of their Father.” – Matt. 13:43], and the fruit of the earth [the reformed social order] shall be excellent and comely for them that are escaped of Israel.”
ISAIAH 6:1‑3 – “I saw the Lord sitting upon a throne, high and lifted up, and his train [His glorified followers] filled the temple [“Ye are the temple of God” ‑ 1 Cor. 3:16]... And one cried unto another, and said, Holy, Holy, Holy, is the Lord of hosts: the whole earth is full of his glory.”
ISAIAH 9:7 – “Of the increase [continuous success] of his government and peace there shall be no end, upon the throne of David, and upon his kingdom, to order it, and to establish it [It has been overturned ever since the days of Zedekiah, the last king of Judah, in the Fall of 607 BC] with judgment and with justice [‘Judgment also will I lay to the line, and righteousness to the plummet (All of earth’s affairs will be squared with righteousness and brought into strict conformity thereto.): and the hail (sharp cutting truth) shall sweep away the refuge of lies (the mountains of error that have blinded the people).’ ‑ Isa. 28:17] The zeal of the Lord of hosts will perform this [will accomplish this prophecy].”
ISAIAH 10:5,6 – “O Assyrian [type of the present‑day radicals, now being used to wreck present institutions, as they were used back there to wreck the Jewish rulership], the rod of mine anger, and the staff [the violent weapons of destruction] in their hand is mine indignation... I will give him a charge, to take the spoil, and to take the prey, and to tread them down like the mire of the street. [We see this going on in many nations today, and we will see yet more of it.]”
ISAIAH 11:1‑5 – “There shall come forth a rod out of the stem of Jesse... and the spirit of the Lord shall rest upon him [Jesus received the Holy Spirit without measure at His baptism by John in the River Jordan.],the spirit of wisdom and understanding [‘Jesus needeth not that any should testify about men, for He knew what was in man.’ ‑ John 2:25]... and shall make him of quick understanding. He shall not judge after the sight of his eyes, neither reprove after the hearing of his ears: but with righteousness shall he judge the poor, and reprove with equity for the meek of the earth [Now quite often the guilty go free, and the innocent are found ‘guilty’.]... and righteousness shall be the girdle of his loins, and faithfulness the girdle of his reins. [At the time of writing the Bible it was the general opinion that the reins – kidneys – were the seat of the intellect.]”
ISAIAH 18:1 – “Woe to the land shadowing with wings, which is beyond the rivers of Ethiopia.” A proper translation should read, “Ho to the land, etc.” This refers to the United States, which has been a haven for liberty lovers and truth seekers in the autocratic governments of earth. And, truly, it is well beyond the “rivers of Ethiopia.”
ISAIAH 19:19, 20 – “In that day [the Millennial Day] there shall be an altar to the Lord in the midst of the land of Egypt, and a pillar at the border thereof to the Lord. And it shall be for a sign and for a witness.” This refers to the Great Pyramid of Giza. “In the midst of the land” – of the land surface of the earth.
ISAIAH 26:9 – “When thy judgments are in the earth [the swift and unerring justice of the Millennial Age, side by side with mercy and peace], the inhabitants of the world will learn righteousness [contrary to much error that is now being circulated].”
ISAIAH 13:1‑13 is a composite picture of “THE DOOM” of Babylon (Christendom in its present confused condition): “Lift ye up a banner [standard] upon the high mountain [the exalted Kingdom]... I have also called my mighty ones for mine anger, even them that rejoice in my highness [those who see and appreciate the grandeur of the prospective kingdom]. The noise of a multitude in the mountains [the present autocratic governments]... nations gathered together [the United Nations assembly]... Howl ye; for the day of the Lord is at hand; it shall come as a destruction from the Almighty. Therefore shall all hands be faint, and every man’s heart shall melt: and they shall be afraid... they shall be in pain as a woman that travaileth... Behold, the day of the Lord cometh, cruel both with wrath and fierce anger, to lay the land desolate: and he shall destroy the sinners thereof out of it.
“For the stars of heaven [upon her head a crown of twelve stars ‑ the twelve Apostles – Rev. 12:1] and the constellations thereof shall not give their light [not understood by the vast majority]: the sun [the Gospel Truth, especially the New Testament section] shall be darkened... and the moon [the light of the Mosaic Law, now observed by the very few] shall not cause her light to shine.
“And I will punish the world for their evil, and the wicked for their iniquity; and I will cause the arrogancy of the proud to cease, and will lay low the terrible [such as Nero, Hitler, et al]. I will make a man more precious than fine gold; even a man than the golden wedge of Ophir.
“Therefore I will shake the heavens [present religious systems], and the earth [the present social order] shall remove out of her place, in the wrath of the Lord of hosts, and in the day of his fierce anger.” See also Rev. 16:16; Heb. 12:26‑29.
ISAIAH 28:17 – “Judgment also will I lay to the line, and righteousness to the plummet: and the hail shall sweep away the refuge of lies, and the water shall overflow the hiding place.”
“They [the present heavens and earth] shall all wax old as cloth a garment; And as a vesture shalt thou fold them up, and they shall be changed [from the kingdoms of this ‘present evil world’]: but thou art the same, and thy years shall not fail.” (Heb. 1: 11, 12)
ISAIAH 35:10 – This 35th chapter of Isaiah is a beautiful terse expression of the great blessings to come from the Messianic Kingdom, much of which we have discussed in previous papers; therefore, we shall offer verse 10 of this short chapter: “The ransomed of the Lord shall return [from the grave, or the death state], and come to Zion [the then ruling supervisors of earth] with songs and everlasting joy upon their heads: they shall obtain joy and gladness, and sorrow and sighing shall flee away.”
ISAIAH 40:1, 2 – “Comfort ye, comfort ye my people [the re‑gathered Jews in Palestine], saith your God. Speak ye comfortably to Jerusalem, and cry unto her, that her warfare is accomplished [this is far from the truth now, but it will soon be realized, the 2520 years from the Fall of 607 BC to 1914, when the Gentile kings came under the eviction process with the beginning of the World War at that time]... she hath received of the Lord’s hand double for all her sins.” [The “double” – Kephel – began with the crucifixion of Jesus in AD 33, and ended in 1878 – exactly 1845 years for the favor and disfavor. Since 1878 Israel has been experiencing the Time of Trouble along with the Gentile nations.]
ISAIAH 53 – This chapter offers a vivid portrayal of the sufferings of Jesus. Verse 9. “He made his grave with the wicked, and with the rich in his death; because he had done no violence, neither was any deceit in his mouth.” Verse 12: “Therefore will I [God] divide him a portion with the great, and he shall divide the spoil with the strong [His ‘joint heirs’ – strong in faith].”
ISAIAH 65:17 ‑ “For, behold, I create new heavens [a new religious system – free from all error] and a new earth [a completely new social order ‑ without evil or violence – in the Kingdom, for which we have been praying for about 1950 years]: and the former shall not be remembered, nor come into mind.”
ISAIAH 66:22 – “For as the new heavens and the new earth, which I will make, shall remain before me, saith the Lord, so shall your seed and your name remain.”
“Exalted of the Lord” – The wailing prophet: This name was pinned upon him because a large part of his writing was his wailing against the backsliding nation of Israel and their wicked priests.
We begin with 2:21: “I had planted thee [Israel] a noble vine, wholly a right seed: how then art thou turned into the degenerate plant of a strange vine unto me?” In 2:1 he had told them the “word of the Lord” had come unto him, and he was commanded to declare it to the nation. His prophecy had occurred in the last forty years of Israel’s freedom, after the conclusion of which they never again had a government of their own; they were under the yoke of the Gentile governments until AD 1948. Much that occurred to Israel then was typical of what has been happening to the Gentile governments and the religious systems with which they are affiliated. Israel had been planted “a noble vine” under the pristine purity of the Aaronic priesthood and leadership of Moses, all of which had been almost completely forgotten by the time Jeremiah appeared on the scene.
Note the similarity between that time and our own time now. “An angel came and cried with a loud voice to him that had the sharp sickle [present truth], saying... gather the clusters of the vine of the earth [the fallen religious systems of this day]; for her grapes are fully ripe.” (Rev. 14:18) The Christian religious system had also been planted a “noble vine” under the leadership of the Apostles, but those teachings have been greatly buried by the earthly leadership that now prevails. Thus, the sentence has been pronounced: “The vine of the earth” is now being gathered, and will shortly be “cast into the great winepress of the wrath of God [the violent features of the Time of Trouble].” (Rev. 14:19)
Ezekiel is also one of the holy prophets who spoke of Restitution – the Messianic Kingdom. Ezekiel 34:23‑26: “And I will set up one shepherd over them, and he shall feed them, and he shall be their shepherd [in Messiah’s Kingdom]. And I the Lord will be their God, and my servant David a prince among them; I the Lord have spoken it. [‘Instead of thy fathers shall be thy children, whom thou mayest make princes in all the earth.’ – Messiah’s progenitors, the Ancient Worthies] And I will make with them a covenant of peace, and will cause the evil beasts to cease out of the land: and they shall dwell safely in the wilderness, and sleep in the woods. And I will make them and the places around about my hill a blessing; and I will cause the shower to come down in his season; there shall be showers of blessing.”
“And they shall no more be a prey to the heathen, neither shall the beast of the land devour them; but they shall dwell safely, and none shall make them afraid. Thus shall they know that I the Lord their God am with them, and that they, even the house of Israel, are my people, saith the Lord God.” (Ezek. 34:28, 30)
In answer to Nebuchadnezzar’s dream Daniel answered: “And in the days of these kings [Gentile kingdoms] shall the God of heaven set up a kingdom, which shall never be destroyed: and the kingdom shall not be left to other people, but it shall break in pieces and consume all these kingdoms, and it shall stand forever.” (Dan. 2:44) Berean Comments: “Gradually establish in power and in authority – Break in pieces – ‘As the vessels of a potter shall they be broken to shivers.’”
“We believe that the time for setting up the kingdom was September 21, 1914.” (That Servant, Reprint 5632, col. 2, par. 4) It will not be until after the Time of Trouble when the “kingdoms of this world” will be forcibly removed that the Mediatorial Kingdom will be established and the New Covenant is made with Israel.
This is the last of the articles on the four Major Prophets and the twelve Minor Prophets. We trust these articles have been informative and a blessing to the Lord’s people.
“And all thy children shall be taught of the Lord; and great shall be the peace of thy children.” (Isa. 54:13) “For the mountains shall depart, and the hills be removed; but my kindness shall not depart from thee.” (Isa. 54:10)
Sincerely your brother, John J. Hoefle, Pilgrim
(Written in October 1983)
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