Archive for Gabriel

There Shall Be Seven Weeks: Show Bread

Posted in #PaulthePoke, Angels with tags , , , , , , , , , , on April 25, 2021 by paulthepoke

Daniel 9:25b …there shall be seven weeks…

The context of this series of posts is the course of the Jewish people for the initial 49 years of the 483 year period communicated from the angel Gabriel to the prophet Daniel. The city of Jerusalem has been rebuilt post exile. These events are covered in Nehemiah 8-13. Israel is returning to God’s Law. The focus is Temple worship service. Up first is the showbread or shewbread.

Nehemiah 10:33a …for the showbread…

Simply put the term for showbread is “bread” in the original Hebrew. The Hebrew term is lechem. The word is also translated as food or meal. It is bread made from the grain of barley, wheat, or corn.

The original source for the showbread comes from Leviticus 24.

Leviticus 24:5-9 “You shall take fine flour and bake twelve loaves from it; two tenths of an ephah shall be in each loaf. And you shall set them in two piles, six in a pile, on the table of pure gold before the LORD. And you shall put pure frankincense on each pile, that it may go with the bread as a memorial portion as a food offering to the LORD. Every Sabbath day Aaron shall arrange it before the LORD regularly; it is from the people of Israel as a covenant forever. And it shall be for Aaron and his sons, and they shall eat it in a holy place, since it is for him a most holy portion out of the LORD’s food offerings, a perpetual due.”

Let’s take a look at the specifics of the verses above from Leviticus 24.

There are 12 loaves of bread, 2 piles of 6. The point of the bread is a memorial portion as a food offering to the LORD.

The text makes it very clear. This is to be done every week on the Sabbath by the descendants of Aaron or the Levites. The bread is to be arranged regularly. It is a covenant forever for the priests. The bread is to be presented weekly as a perpetual due.

photo: Temple Institute

Fast forward roughly 1,440 years from Moses to Jesus. Christ is about to give the Pharisees more than they can handle. Jesus, of course, is going to choose the Sabbath to make a point.

Matthew 12:1-7 At that time Jesus went through the grain fields on the Sabbath. His disciples were hungry, and they began to pluck heads of grain and to eat. But when the Pharisees saw it, they said to him, “Look, your disciples are doing what is not lawful to do on the Sabbath.” He said to them, “Have you not read what David did when he was hungry, and those who were with him: how he entered the house of God and ate the bread of the Presence, which it was not lawful for him to eat nor for those who were with him, but only for the priests? Or have you not read in the Law how on the Sabbath the priests in the temple profane the Sabbath and are guiltless? I tell you, something greater than the temple is here. And if you had known what this means, ‘I desire mercy, and not sacrifice,’ you would not have condemned the guiltless.

If one is hungry, they can eat, even on the Sabbath. The disciples were hungry. It is not illegal to eat on the Sabbath.

But yet, the Pharisees wanted to make an issue of the situation. Jesus chose to use the illegal and sinful example of King David (See 1 Samuel 21 for the incident). David lied and manipulated the situation. Christ also pointed out the hypocrisy of the priests.

Jesus is the Lord. The showbread is a food offering to the LORD. The only crime Jesus committed is He broke the “law” of the Pharisees. Jesus is not breaking the law by eating the showbread on the Sabbath. Taking care of your friends with provision is more important than following a man made tradition.

Matthew 12:8 For the Son of Man is lord of the Sabbath.”

There Shall Be Seven Weeks: The Temple Tax

Posted in #PaulthePoke, Angels, Prophecy with tags , , , , , , , , , , on April 18, 2021 by paulthepoke

Daniel 9:25b …there shall be seven weeks…

The context of this series of posts is the course of the Jewish people for the initial 49 years of the 483 year period communicated from the angel Gabriel to the prophet Daniel. The city of Jerusalem has been rebuilt post exile. These events are covered in Nehemiah 8-13. Israel is returning to God’s Law. The Shemitah has been revived. Up next is the reinstatement of the Temple Tax.

Nehemiah 10:32 We also take on ourselves the obligation to give yearly a third part of a shekel for the service of the house of our God:

Under the leadership of Nehemiah, the Temple Tax was reinstated. Let’s look at what Nehemiah is proposing compared to what Moses states in the law.

Exodus 30:13-16 This is what everyone who is numbered shall give: half a shekel according to the shekel of the sanctuary (the shekel is twenty gerahs), half a shekel as a contribution to the Lord. Everyone who is numbered, from twenty years old and over, shall give the contribution to the Lord. The rich shall not pay more and the poor shall not pay less than the half shekel, when you give the contribution to the Lord to make atonement for yourselves. You shall take the atonement money from the sons of Israel and shall give it for the service of the tent of meeting, that it may be a memorial for the sons of Israel before the Lord, to make atonement for yourselves.”

Here are the specifics of the Temple Tax for service.

  1. Tax of 1/2 Shekel is cost.
  2. Men 20 years of age and older shall pay.
  3. No sliding scale of taxation. Rich and poor pay the same.
  4. Yearly contribution required.
  5. Purpose is for atonement of personal life.

Everything appears to be in alignment with one exception. Moses said 1/2 shekel and Nehemiah says 1/3 shekel. Why the difference? Is Nehemiah being disobedient or cheap?

There are many theories and conjectures as to why the difference. The most reasonable explanation may come from Ridgeway’s Origin of Currency and Weight Measures.

In Moses’ day, Jews contributed a beka or a half shekel.

Exodus 38:26 a beka a head (that is, half a shekel according to the shekel of the sanctuary)…

One beka or a half shekel equals 5.67 grams or about 65 grains.

Roughly one thousand years had passed from the Exodus and Moses (1440 BC) to Nehemiah’s return to the Promised Land (440 BC).

In Nehemiah’s day, the Babylonian Empire standard was the stater or shekel. This would have been the relevant currency for the Israelis of the time. The stater weighed about 173 grains. One third of a stater or shekel would be 58 grains.

One beka or a half shekel equals 65 grains verses one third stater or shekel equals 58 grains. These two measurements relative to their time and cultural influence are essentially equal.

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Fast forward about another 470 years to the time of Jesus. The Roman Empire is in control over the region of Israel and the city of Capernaum. The Jewish historian Flavius Josephus made the following observation.

‘The emperor commanded every Jew to pay the two drachma annually to the Capitol which they had before been accustomed to pay to the Temple at Jerusalem.’

Matthew 17:24 When they came to Capernaum, the collectors of the two-drachma tax went up to Peter and said, “Does your teacher not pay the tax?”

This had to really irritate the Jews, specifically Peter and the apostles. The trap had been set. The Roman tax collectors knew who Jesus claimed to be. Jesus was the Jewish King and Messiah. Would Jesus bow to the Romans and pay the tax?

The two-drachma tax is known as the δίδραχμον/didrachma in the original Greek text. The didrachma was a silver coin during the life and times of Jesus that was equal to one half shekel.

We know how the rest of the story goes. Jesus had Peter go fishing. No problem, Jesus and Peter’s tax was paid.

Historical research provided by Cambridge Bible for Schools and Colleges via Bible Hub.

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So here we are roughly 2,000 years later from the time of Christ. Israel is back in the land. Jerusalem is their capital. The modern day Sanhedrin has reconvened. The Temple Tax and the beka are back in the news.

The modern day Sanhedrin issued a Temple Tax back in February 2017. They even minted 1,000 coins with the images of Cyrus the Great and President Donald Trump. They are raising money for the promised third Temple.

So a tax written by Moses as told to him by God over 3,400 years ago, still relevant…

There Shall Be Seven Weeks: The Sabbath

Posted in #PaulthePoke, Angels with tags , , , , , , , , on February 28, 2021 by paulthepoke

Daniel 9:25b …there shall be seven weeks…

The context of this series of posts is the course of the Jewish people for the initial 49 years of the 483 year period communicated from the angel Gabriel to the prophet Daniel. The city of Jerusalem has been rebuilt post exile. These events are covered in Nehemiah 8-13. Israel is getting back to God’s ways. The next step is honoring the Sabbath.

Nehemiah 10:31a And if the peoples of the land bring in goods or any grain on the Sabbath day to sell, we will not buy from them on the Sabbath or on a holy day.

The concept of the Sabbath was introduced to Israel when they were wandering in the desert for 40 years. This is the first mention of the term “Sabbath”. The specific details are noted in Exodus 16:22-30. God is promising Israel He will provide. Take a day off and rest. It is a gift from God.

Exodus 16:23 then he said to them, “This is what the LORD meant: Tomorrow is a Sabbath observance, a holy Sabbath to the LORD. Bake what you will bake and boil what you will boil, and all that is left over put aside to be kept until morning.”

Exodus 16:29 “See, the LORD has given you the Sabbath; therefore He gives you bread for two days on the sixth day. Remain every man in his place; let no man go out of his place on the seventh day.”

The word “Sabbath” in the Hebrew is transliterated. It is also “Sabbath” in English. The term is equated with rest. It is to be set apart, sacred, and holy.

God introduced the concept in the creation week. On the seventh day, He rested and reflected on His work. God did not need to rest but He did. The Sabbath is “barak” in the Hebrew or blessed. This day is set apart and clean. The ordinance is best described as given to Moses by God Himself. The context is the 10 Commandments.

Exodus 20:8-11 “Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy. Six days you shall labor, and do all your work, but the seventh day is a Sabbath to the LORD your God. On it you shall not do any work, you, or your son, or your daughter, your male servant, or your female servant, or your livestock, or the sojourner who is within your gates. For in six days the LORD made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that is in them, and rested on the seventh day. Therefore the LORD blessed the Sabbath day and made it holy.

Nehemiah is teaching Israel about the Sabbath at the end of the week and the holy days. Economic activity will cease during these days. Sales will come to a halt. God set the standard.

There Shall Be Seven Weeks: Marriage & the First Commandment

Posted in #PaulthePoke, Angels with tags , , , , , , , , , , on February 14, 2021 by paulthepoke

Daniel 9:25b …there shall be seven weeks…

The context of this series of posts is the course of the Jewish people for the initial 49 years of the 483 year period communicated from the angel Gabriel to the prophet Daniel. The city of Jerusalem has been rebuilt post exile. These events are covered in Nehemiah 8-13. Israel is getting back to God’s ways.

Nehemiah 10:1a On the seals are the names of Nehemiah the governor, the son of Hacaliah…

It is from this verse we learn of Nehemiah’s position and title. We have the term “governor” in English. The original Hebrew text has the word tirshatha which is a Persian word for “governor”. This term is used five times in the Bible and only by Nehemiah and Ezra.

Nehemiah 10:1-27 is a list of people who were willing to seal their name as a commitment to keep God’s laws and commandments. Others willing to commit to God’s law included a pretty comprehensive list. These folks were required to swear allegiance to God with their obedience (Nehemiah 10:29).

Nehemiah 10:28 The rest of the people, the priests, the Levites, the gatekeepers, the singers, the temple servants, and all who have separated themselves from the peoples of the lands to the Law of God, their wives, their sons, their daughters, all who have knowledge and understanding…

The first item on the agenda with Nehemiah is marriage. The first item on God’s agenda in the garden was marriage.

Nehemiah 10:30 We will not give our daughters to the peoples of the land or take their daughters for our sons.

This is a reminder from the Mosaic Law. The law is mentioned in Exodus and Deuteronomy.

Exodus 34:16 …and you take of their daughters for your sons, and their daughters whore after their gods and make your sons whore after their gods. See also Deuteronomy 7:3-4.

The issue is ultimately worshipping the God of Israel. If a man marries a pagan worshipping woman, he will follow her spiritually. He will turn his back from God and go another way. The result will be a violation of the First Commandment.

Exodus 20:3 You shall have no other gods before Me.

Solomon for all of his wisdom did not follow this command. He intermarried many times over and the result was pagan shrines, temples, and idols being built all over Israel. His heart was with pleasing his wives instead of worshipping and focusing on God.

Granted, we are not under the Mosaic Law today in Jesus Christ. For Christians, the issue is not marrying within our tribe or country. We are called to seek the like-minded in Christ in marriage.

2 Corinthians 6:14 Do not be unequally yoked with unbelievers. For what partnership has righteousness with lawlessness? Or what fellowship has light with darkness?

Christians should present themselves differently. Because of Christ’s work on the cross, we are free from the bondage of sin. He fulfilled the law for us. Jesus imputed righteousness to believers. An unbeliever remains stained with the guilt of sin.

Jesus calls believers to be salt and light for the world. 1 John 1-2 proclaims believers should walk in the light of Christ and keep His commandments. How can an unbeliever illuminate if they are not in the source of light?

In all cases whether it is the Old Testament or the New Testament, this is ultimately about having one’s heart set towards God. Place God first in your lives. Stay focused on God. He knows and wants what is best for us.

There Shall Be Seven Weeks: God Is With Us

Posted in #PaulthePoke, Angels with tags , , , , , , on February 7, 2021 by paulthepoke

Daniel 9:25b …there shall be seven weeks…

The context of this series of posts is the course of the Jewish people for the initial 49 years of the 483 year period communicated from the angel Gabriel to the prophet Daniel. The city of Jerusalem has been rebuilt post exile.

As the Israelites read the law, confessed their sins, and worshipped God, the priests made a proclamation.

Nehemiah 9:5b “Stand up and bless the LORD your God from everlasting to everlasting. Blessed be your glorious name, which is exalted above all blessing and praise.”

The focus of the announcement was a history of who God is and what God has done. It was a time for review and reminder. God is with us.

  • God is the Creator (Nehemiah 9:6).
  • God called Abram and established a covenant with Abraham (Nehemiah 9:7-8).
  • God saw and heard the misery and poverty of His people in Egypt (Nehemiah 9:9).
  • God performed miracles against Pharaoh and Egypt (Nehemiah 9:10).
  • God divided the Red Sea (Nehemiah 9:11).
  • God led by smoke and fire (Nehemiah 9:12).
  • God delivered the law on Mount Sinai (Nehemiah 9:13-14).
  • God provided manna and water (Nehemiah 9:15).
  • God was forgiving, gracious, and compassionate when Israel disobeyed (Nehemiah 9:16-17).
  • God stuck with and continued provision for Israel even when they made idols (Nehemiah 9:18-20).
  • God provided and clothes were preserved for forty years in the desert (Nehemiah 9:21).
  • God gave Israel the Promised Land and the people multiplied (Nehemiah 9:22-24).
  • God delivered prosperity to His people (Nehemiah 9:25).
  • God gave Israel to oppressors because of their disobedience (Nehemiah 9:26-30).
  • God does not forsake Israel and remains gracious and compassionate (Nehemiah 9:31-32).
  • God is just (Nehemiah 9:33).

At this point in the proclamation, Israel admits their iniquities and sins. They know they are guilty many times over. Israel realizes they are deserving of punishment.

  • Every level of society from top to bottom was disobedient to the law (Nehemiah 9:34).
  • Israel did not serve God or repent (Nehemiah 9:35).
  • Israel acknowledges slavery to God and the land due to sin (Nehemiah 9:36-37).

The good news, Israel is not stuck in its past because of sin. God has an answer for sin. Gabriel told Daniel a Messiah is coming.

Daniel 9:25 Know therefore and understand that from the going out of the word to restore and build Jerusalem to the coming of an anointed one, a prince…

From our view point today in the 21st century, history tells us Israel rejected their Messiah at His first coming. Despite the rejection, Jesus died on the cross for their sins as well as the remainder of humanity.

Isaiah 53:12 Therefore I will divide him a portion with the many, and he shall divide the spoil with the strong, because he poured out his soul to death and was numbered with the transgressors; yet he bore the sin of many, and makes intercession for the transgressors.

Colossians 2:14 By canceling the record of debt that stood against us with its legal demands. This He set aside, nailing it to the cross.

Romans 5:8 But God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.

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But there is more good news for those who believe in Jesus. He is coming again.

1 Thessalonians 4:16-17 For the Lord himself will descend from heaven with a cry of command, with the voice of an archangel, and with the sound of the trumpet of God. And the dead in Christ will rise first. Then we who are alive, who are left, will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air, and so we will always be with the Lord.

For those who think this is nonsense and do not believe. Your choice has consequences regardless of what you think.

Revelation 20:11-15 Then I saw a great white throne and him who was seated on it. From his presence earth and sky fled away, and no place was found for them. And I saw the dead, great and small, standing before the throne, and books were opened. Then another book was opened, which is the book of life. And the dead were judged by what was written in the books, according to what they had done. And the sea gave up the dead who were in it, Death and Hades gave up the dead who were in them, and they were judged, each one of them, according to what they had done. Then Death and Hades were thrown into the lake of fire. This is the second death, the lake of fire. And if anyone’s name was not found written in the book of life, he was thrown into the lake of fire.

There Shall Be Seven Weeks: Confession of Sin

Posted in #PaulthePoke, Angels with tags , , , , , , on January 31, 2021 by paulthepoke

Daniel 9:25b …there shall be seven weeks…

The context of this series of posts is the course of the Jewish people for the initial 49 years of the 483 year period communicated from the angel Gabriel to the prophet Daniel. The city of Jerusalem has been rebuilt post exile.

The people of Israel have returned to God and celebrated the Fall Feasts for the first time as a nation in their Promised Land and in Jerusalem. The Fall Feasts concluded on Tishri 22nd. Two days later…

Nehemiah 9:1 On the twenty-fourth day of the same month, the Israelites gathered together, fasting and wearing sackcloth, with dust on their heads.

Israel under the leadership of Nehemiah and Ezra, they wasted no time. The date is two days after the solemn assembly on the 24th of Tishri. We know the occasion is of serious tone. Note the description of the scene: fasting, sackcloth, and dust on their heads. Humility is the idea.

Nehemiah 9:2 And the Israelites separated themselves from all foreigners and stood and confessed their sins and the iniquities of their fathers.

The nation Israel “separated” or badal in the Hebrew. They set themselves apart from other peoples. Badal is the same word used in the creation week. God divided the day from night. He separated the light from darkness.

The same is true for us today as followers of Jesus Christ. Believers are not to be a part of this world. We are called to be holy and different.

John 15:19 If you were of the world, the world would love you as its own; but because you are not of the world, but I chose you out of the world, therefore the world hates you.

1 Peter 1:15-16 but as He who called you is holy, you also be holy in all your conduct, since it is written, “You shall be holy, for I am holy.”

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and confessed their sins and the iniquities of their fathers.

This is a corporate and historical confession. The people of the nation of Israel are admitting they are sinners both currently and in the past. Israel is expressing their guilt. They know they are worthy of punishment. But, the people continued to worship God.

Nehemiah 9:3 And they stood up in their place and read from the Book of the Law of the LORD their God for a quarter of the day; for another quarter of it they made confession and worshiped the LORD their God.

Decree to Rebuild Jerusalem, Year

Posted in #PaulthePoke, Angels, Gospel with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , on January 10, 2021 by paulthepoke

Daniel 9:25 Know therefore and understand that from the going out of the word to restore and build Jerusalem to the coming of an anointed one, a prince, there shall be seven weeks. Then for sixty-two weeks it shall be built again with squares and moat, but in a troubled time.

The context of the discussion is Gabriel’s message from God to Daniel. The question is, what year was the decree to rebuild Jerusalem?

Nehemiah 2:1a In the month of Nisan, in the twentieth year of King Artaxerxeswhen wine was before him, I took up the wine and gave it to the king…

When was the twentieth year of King Artaxerxes?

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Before getting into the study, I would like to point out there are differing thoughts as to the year of the decree. Was the year 445 or 444 BC? There is excellent scholarship for both years. Encouraging all to look into the matter for themselves. There is and will be disagreement and that is okay. People are making a good faith effort to understand the mind of an infinite God. We are finite humanity in a broken and fallen state.

Full disclosure, this author is in the 444 BC camp. Some would say I have a confirmation bias. My answer would be yes. This date makes sense to me for many reasons. It fits in what we understand of time.

…in the twentieth year of King Artaxerxes…

Smith’s Bible Dictionary, John Walvoord’s Every Prophecy of the Bible, and many others indicate Artaxerxes Longimanus reign of power was initiated in 464 BC.

464 BC – 20 years = 444 BC

The Gregorian calendar we use today would not come into existence until 1582 AD. And this adds to the confusion. This prophecy was revealed in 539 BC. Scholars and experts are using years dated by a Gregorian system.

Jews recognized kings and their reign according to regnal years.

A regnal year is a year of the reign of a sovereign, from the Latin regnum meaning kingdom, rule. Regnal years considered the date as an ordinal, not a cardinal number. For example, a monarch could have a first year of rule, a second year of rule, a third year of rule, and so on, but not a zeroth year of rule. -Wikipedia

Many Biblical and secular historians and scholars believe Artaxerxes reign started in December 465 BC. That would mean the first regnal year of power would have been from December 465 BC to December 464 BC. The majority of the first year of Artaxerxes reign would have taken place in 464 BC.

Twenty years later would result in a time range of December 445 to December 444. We know the month is Nisan which equates to the spring months of March or April. Nisan 1/March/April 444 falls in this time frame.

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Looking at Daniel 9:25, God’s clock is started with the issue to rebuild Jerusalem. A time period is defined to the coming of a “prince“. We know that “prince” to be Jesus Christ. The verse states the following.

…there shall be seven weeks. Then for sixty-two weeks…

Per a Jewish calendar, time would be calculated in the following manner.

seven weeks or (7 X 7) + sixty-two weeks or (62 X 7) = 483 years.

483 years X 360 days = 173,880 days.

See the link below for calculating “sets of weeks“.

With a starting point of Nisan 1, 444 BC, a decree from Artaxerxes was made to rebuild Jerusalem.

Take your pick. 69 weeks, 483 years, or 173,880 days later, the math calculation results in the spring or Nisan of 33 AD.

(Nisan 1, 444 BC) + (69 weeks/483 years/173,880 days) = Passover 33 AD

33 AD is the year Jesus entered Jerusalem on a donkey and presented Himself. Jesus demonstrated Himself as the spotless sacrificial lamb under inspection. Christ was the sacrificed Lamb of God of Passover. He was buried as the symbol for the Feast of Unleavened Bread. And Jesus Christ was raised from the dead, resurrected as the First Fruits.

Galatians 4:4-5 But when the fullness of time had come, God sent forth his Son, born of woman, born under the law, to redeem those who were under the law, so that we might receive adoption as sons.

Decree to Rebuild Jerusalem, Nisan 1

Posted in #PaulthePoke, Angels, Prophecy with tags , , , , , , , , on December 5, 2020 by paulthepoke

Daniel 9:25 Know therefore and understand that from the going out of the word to restore and build Jerusalem to the coming of an anointed one, a prince, there shall be seven weeks. Then for sixty-two weeks it shall be built again with squares and moat, but in a troubled time.

The angel Gabriel continues with his revelation from God to the prophet Daniel.

Nehemiah 2:1a In the month of Nisan, in the twentieth year of King Artaxerxes, when wine was before him, I took up the wine and gave it to the king…

This is the date of the decree to rebuild Jerusalem. God’s clock starts on this date. Nehemiah is performing his duty as a cup bearer. Artaxerxes is drinking his wine…

In the month of Nisan… Dating the first part of the time stamp appears to be the easy part. Nisan is the first month on a Hebrew calendar. Nisan means “their flight”. Nehemiah 2:1 is the first time the month is called Nisan in the Bible. The month of Nisan is the beginning of the religious or spiritual year on a Hebrew calendar. The month of Nisan is synonymous with the constellation of the lamb in the Hebrew Mazzaroth.

Exodus 13:4 On this day in the month of Abib, you are about to go forth.

Moses referred to this month as Abib. Per Strong’s Concordance, Abib means: fresh, young barley ears; month of ear-forming, of greening of crop, of growing green; month of Exodus and Passover.

Exodus 12:1-2 Now the Lord said to Moses and Aaron in the land of Egypt, “This month shall be the beginning of months for you; it is to be the first month of the year to you…”

This is when God proclaims His New Year. It is in the spring time when life emerges from winter.

Many commentators and scholars imply the date as the first of the month. Assuming the first of the month, Jews would have identified a new moon to signify the beginning of a new month. By definition, a new moon is proclaimed when the first little sliver emerges from a darkened moon. It is a tiny crescent that is noted briefly at sunset on the western horizon. The month begins at the sighting of the new moon. Jews have utilized the procedure every month for thousands of years. It is called Rosh Chodesh which means “head of the month”.

Thanks to math of Johannes Kepler and his laws of planetary motion and physics, we are able to calculate the movement of heavenly bodies. Kepler’s math allows us to map the exact location of the sun, moon, planets, and stars in time and space. The heavens are a finely tuned clock which can be run forward and backward. As a result, the dates can be confirmed.

Calculations start from Nisan 1. The ultimate question is the year.

Gabriel’s 70 Weeks: Why 70 Weeks? Part 2

Posted in #PaulthePoke, Angels, Prophecy with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , on November 15, 2020 by paulthepoke

Daniel 9:24 Seventy weeks are decreed about your people and your holy city

God knew from the beginning of Israel being a nation, ultimately they would not let the land rest. Israel was commanded to let the land rest in Leviticus 25:1-5.

God let Israel know. If the land is not allowed to rest from your activity, then God would make sure the land would rest. The consequence of disobedience was prophetic.

Leviticus 26:34-35 Then the land shall enjoy its Sabbaths all the days it lies desolate, while you are in the land of your enemies. At that time the land will rest and enjoy its Sabbaths. As long as it lies desolate, the land will have the rest it did not receive during the Sabbaths when you lived in it.

Later, the concept is stated again.

Leviticus 26:43 But the land shall be abandoned by them and enjoy its Sabbaths while it lies desolate without them, and they shall make amends for their iniquity, because they spurned my rules and their soul abhorred my statutes.

God communicated His Law to Moses around 1446 BC as estimated by Biblical scholars.

By historical accounts, the practice of ignoring the land’s Sabbath rest began around the time of Samuel the prophet and judge around 1100 BC. Israel continued to farm for economic purposes and development. It did not make economic sense to let the land rest.

Fast forward to the prophet Jeremiah circa 627-580 BC.

In Jeremiah 25, the prophet is warning Judah and the city of Jerusalem. Because of your disobedience, 70 years of captivity are coming.

Jeremiah 25:11-12 This whole land shall become a ruin and a waste, and these nations shall serve the king of Babylon seventy years. Then after seventy years are completed, I will punish the king of Babylon and that nation, the land of the Chaldeans, for their iniquity, declares the LORD, making the land an everlasting waste.

Keep in mind, Daniel was already in Babylon in 605 BC under King Nebuchadnezzar’s first captivity of Jerusalem. Daniel was protected by God who knew the future of Jerusalem. Daniel was acutely aware of Jeremiah’s prophecy.

Daniel 9:2 in the first year of his reign, I, Daniel, perceived in the books the number of years that, according to the word of the LORD to Jeremiah the prophet, must pass before the end of the desolations of Jerusalem, namely, seventy years.

In 586 BC, Jeremiah’s prophetic words would come to pass. Babylon under Nebuchadnezzar would capture and utterly destroy Jerusalem. Historians and commentators indicate the actual date was on the 9th of Av. A day which has become a national day of mourning for Israel.

2 Chronicles 36:20-21 He took into exile in Babylon those who had escaped from the sword, and they became servants to him and to his sons until the establishment of the kingdom of Persia, to fulfill the word of the LORD by the mouth of Jeremiah, until the land had enjoyed its Sabbaths. All the days that it lay desolate it kept Sabbath, to fulfill seventy years.

Now, there is the matter of Leviticus 26 and God’s consistent statement, I will punish you seven times more for your sins.

70 x 7 = 490

Israel’s punishment is not complete.

To be continued…

Gabriel’s 70 Weeks: Why 70 Weeks? Part 1

Posted in #PaulthePoke, Angels, Prophecy with tags , , , , , on November 1, 2020 by paulthepoke

Daniel 9:24 Seventy weeks are decreed about your people and your holy city

Why were 70 sets of 7 or 70 weeks set aside for Israel and Jerusalem? On the surface, this seems rather arbitrary. Don’t kid yourself, God has a purpose and a reason. And He sent the angel Gabriel to tell Daniel.

The issue is Israel’s response to God’s Law. Moses recorded the following.

Leviticus 25:1-5 Then the LORD said to Moses on Mount Sinai, “Speak to the Israelites and say to them: When you enter the land that I am giving you, the land itself must observe a Sabbath to the LORD. For six years you may sow your field and prune your vineyard and gather its crops. But in the seventh year there shall be a Sabbath of complete rest for the land, a Sabbath to the LORD. You are not to sow your field or prune your vineyard. You are not to reap the aftergrowth of your harvest or gather the grapes of your untended vines. The land must have a year of complete rest.

The concept is straight forward. The land can be worked and farmed for six consecutive years. But, the land is to rest on the seventh year. That means no tilling, sowing, working, planting or pruning. Let the land rest.

This pattern of rest was initiated in God’s creation week. On the seventh day, God Himself rested.

Genesis 2:1-3 Thus the heavens and the earth were completed, and all their hosts. By the seventh day God completed His work which He had done, and He rested on the seventh day from all His work which He had done. Then God blessed the seventh day and sanctified it, because in it He rested from all His work which God had created and made.

God is beyond fair and an effective communicator. He gives the good news first. If Israel followed His directions, there would be significant benefit for the nation. God’s blessings for obedience are written in Leviticus 26:1-13. These national blessings have yet to be realized by Israel but will come to fruition during the Millennial Kingdom and into eternity under the leadership of the Messiah, Jesus Christ.

On the flip side, there are negative consequences for disobedience. Israel’s prophetic rebellious history is laid out with God’s response in Leviticus 26:14-39.

Multiple times God warns of the consequences of the nation’s disobedience.

Leviticus 26:14-16a But if you do not obey Me and do not carry out all these commandments, if, instead, you reject My statutes, and if your soul abhors My ordinances so as not to carry out all My commandments, and so break My covenant, I, in turn, will do this to you: 

Look at the verbs in the initial statement by God in reference to Israel’s conditional attitude and actions.

  1. Do not obey
  2. do not carry out
  3. reject
  4. abhors
  5. not carry out
  6. break

Leviticus 26:18 ‘If also after these things you do not obey Me, then I will punish you seven times more for your sins.

Leviticus 26:21 If then, you act with hostility against Me and are unwilling to obey Me, I will increase the plague on you seven times according to your sins.

Leviticus 26:23-24 And if by these things you are not turned to Me, but act with hostility against Me, then I will act with hostility against you; and I, even I, will strike you seven times for your sins.

Leviticus 26:27-28 Yet if in spite of this you do not obey Me, but act with hostility against Me, then I will act with wrathful hostility against you, and I, even I, will punish you seven times for your sins.

Above are 10 different examples of prophetic disobedience in the text.

10 X 7 for your sins = 70.

God is telling Israel, if you disobey and act with hostility… not only is this your consequence, this is your course of history.

To be continued…

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