Tag Archives: Zachariah
1 This is a revelation from[a] Jesus Christ, which God gave him to show his servants the events that must soon[b] take place. He sent an angel to present this revelation to his servant John, 2 who faithfully reported everything he saw. This is his report of the word of God and the testimony of Jesus Christ.
3 God blesses the one who reads the words of this prophecy to the church, and he blesses all who listen to its message and obey what it says, for the time is near.
John’s Greeting to the Seven Churches
4 This letter is from John to the seven churches in the province of Asia.[c]
Grace and peace to you from the one who is, who always was, and who is still to come; from the sevenfold Spirit[d] before his throne; 5 and from Jesus Christ. He is the faithful witness to these things, the first to rise from the dead, and the ruler of all the kings of the world.
All glory to him who loves us and has freed us from our sins by shedding his blood for us. 6 He has made us a Kingdom of priests for God his Father. All glory and power to him forever and ever! Amen.
7 Look! He comes with the clouds of heaven.
And everyone will see him—
even those who pierced him.
And all the nations of the world
will mourn for him.
8 “I am the Alpha and the Omega—the beginning and the end,”[e] says the Lord God. “I am the one who is, who always was, and who is still to come—the Almighty One.”
Vision of the Son of Man
9 I, John, am your brother and your partner in suffering and in God’s Kingdom and in the patient endurance to which Jesus calls us. I was exiled to the island of Patmos for preaching the word of God and for my testimony about Jesus. 10 It was the Lord’s Day, and I was worshiping in the Spirit.[f] Suddenly, I heard behind me a loud voice like a trumpet blast. 11 It said, “Write in a book[g] everything you see, and send it to the seven churches in the cities of Ephesus, Smyrna, Pergamum, Thyatira, Sardis, Philadelphia, and Laodicea.”
12 When I turned to see who was speaking to me, I saw seven gold lampstands. 13 And standing in the middle of the lampstands was someone like the Son of Man.[h] He was wearing a long robe with a gold sash across his chest. 14 His head and his hair were white like wool, as white as snow. And his eyes were like flames of fire. 15 His feet were like polished bronze refined in a furnace, and his voice thundered like mighty ocean waves. 16 He held seven stars in his right hand, and a sharp two-edged sword came from his mouth. And his face was like the sun in all its brilliance.
17 When I saw him, I fell at his feet as if I were dead. But he laid his right hand on me and said, “Don’t be afraid! I am the First and the Last. 18 I am the living one. I died, but look—I am alive forever and ever! And I hold the keys of death and the grave.[i]
19 “Write down what you have seen—both the things that are now happening and the things that will happen.[j] 20 This is the meaning of the mystery of the seven stars you saw in my right hand and the seven gold lampstands: The seven stars are the angels[k] of the seven churches, and the seven lampstands are the seven churches.
- 1:1a Or of.
- 1:1b Or suddenly, or quickly.
- 1:4a Asia was a Roman province in what is now western Turkey.
- 1:4b Greek the seven spirits.
- 1:8 Greek I am the Alpha and the Omega, referring to the first and last letters of the Greek alphabet.
- 1:10 Or in spirit.
- 1:11 Or on a scroll.
- 1:13 Or like a son of man. See Dan 7:13. “Son of Man” is a title Jesus used for himself.
- 1:18 Greek and Hades.
- 1:19 Or what you have seen and what they mean—the things that have already begun to happen.
- 1:20 Or the messengers.
Why Do Christian Women Say Don’t Dress Like A Muslim
Jehoahaz Rules in Judah
36 Then the people of the land took Josiah’s son Jehoahaz and made him the next king in Jerusalem.
2 Jehoahaz[a] was twenty-three years old when he became king, and he reigned in Jerusalem three months.
3 Then he was deposed by the king of Egypt, who demanded that Judah pay 7,500 pounds of silver and 75 pounds of gold[b] as tribute.
Jehoiakim Rules in Judah
4 The king of Egypt then installed Eliakim, the brother of Jehoahaz, as the next king of Judah and Jerusalem, and he changed Eliakim’s name to Jehoiakim. Then Neco took Jehoahaz to Egypt as a prisoner.
5 Jehoiakim was twenty-five years old when he became king, and he reigned in Jerusalem eleven years. He did what was evil in the sight of the Lord his God.
6 Then King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon came to Jerusalem and captured it, and he bound Jehoiakim in bronze chains and led him away to Babylon. 7 Nebuchadnezzar also took some of the treasures from the Temple of the Lord, and he placed them in his palace[c] in Babylon.
8 The rest of the events in Jehoiakim’s reign, including all the evil things he did and everything found against him, are recorded in The Book of the Kings of Israel and Judah. Then his son Jehoiachin became the next king.
Jehoiachin Rules in Judah
9 Jehoiachin was eighteen[d] years old when he became king, and he reigned in Jerusalem three months and ten days. Jehoiachin did what was evil in the Lord’s sight.
10 In the spring of the year[e] King Nebuchadnezzar took Jehoiachin to Babylon. Many treasures from the Temple of the Lord were also taken to Babylon at that time. And Nebuchadnezzar installed Jehoiachin’s uncle,[f] Zedekiah, as the next king in Judah and Jerusalem.
Zedekiah Rules in Judah
11 Zedekiah was twenty-one years old when he became king, and he reigned in Jerusalem eleven years. 12 But Zedekiah did what was evil in the sight of the Lord his God, and he refused to humble himself when the prophet Jeremiah spoke to him directly from the Lord. 13 He also rebelled against King Nebuchadnezzar, even though he had taken an oath of loyalty in God’s name. Zedekiah was a hard and stubborn man, refusing to turn to the Lord, the God of Israel.
14 Likewise, all the leaders of the priests and the people became more and more unfaithful. They followed all the pagan practices of the surrounding nations, desecrating the Temple of the Lord that had been consecrated in Jerusalem.
15 The Lord, the God of their ancestors, repeatedly sent his prophets to warn them, for he had compassion on his people and his Temple. 16 But the people mocked these messengers of God and despised their words. They scoffed at the prophets until the Lord’s anger could no longer be restrained and nothing could be done.
The Fall of Jerusalem
17 So the Lord brought the king of Babylon against them. The Babylonians[g] killed Judah’s young men, even chasing after them into the Temple. They had no pity on the people, killing both young men and young women, the old and the infirm. God handed all of them over to Nebuchadnezzar. 18 The king took home to Babylon all the articles, large and small, used in the Temple of God, and the treasures from both the Lord’s Temple and from the palace of the king and his officials. 19 Then his army burned the Temple of God, tore down the walls of Jerusalem, burned all the palaces, and completely destroyed everything of value.[h] 20 The few who survived were taken as exiles to Babylon, and they became servants to the king and his sons until the kingdom of Persia came to power.
21 So the message of the Lord spoken through Jeremiah was fulfilled. The land finally enjoyed its Sabbath rest, lying desolate until the seventy years were fulfilled, just as the prophet had said.
Cyrus Allows the Exiles to Return
22 In the first year of King Cyrus of Persia,[i] the Lord fulfilled the prophecy he had given through Jeremiah.[j] He stirred the heart of Cyrus to put this proclamation in writing and to send it throughout his kingdom:
23 “This is what King Cyrus of Persia says:
“The Lord, the God of heaven, has given me all the kingdoms of the earth. He has appointed me to build him a Temple at Jerusalem, which is in Judah. Any of you who are his people may go there for this task. And may the Lord your God be with you!”
- 36:2 Hebrew Joahaz, a variant spelling of Jehoahaz; also in 36:4.
- 36:3 Hebrew 100 talents [3,400 kilograms] of silver and 1 talent [34 kilograms] of gold.
- 36:7 Or temple.
- 36:9 As in one Hebrew manuscript, some Greek manuscripts, and Syriac version (see also 2 Kgs 24:8); most Hebrew manuscripts read eight.
- 36:10a Hebrew At the turn of the year. The first day of this year in the ancient Hebrew lunar calendar was April 13, 597 B.c.
- 36:10b As in parallel text at 2 Kgs 24:17; Hebrew reads brother, or relative.
- 36:17 Or Chaldeans.
- 36:19 Or destroyed all the valuable articles from the Temple.
- 36:22a The first year of Cyrus’s reign over Babylon was 538 B.c.
- 36:22b See Jer 25:11-12; 29:10.
What The Bible Says About Television
Things Unsaid (Three)
(#299 from Suffer Well Devotional Series©)
A simple look at the life, and not just the words, of key figures in Scripture:
Without citing specific Scriptures, for a moment, let’s take a panoramic view at how a few prominent historical figures related to Yahweh and their calling. This is another piece to the pattern which helps unravel and reveal the calling in your life. Instead of recounting a series of scriptural narratives to reveal this pattern, we will pose questions, rather than recite verses.
A big portion of identifying your personal calling is having the ability to remove anything that hinders you from that calling. Most often it is a wrong mindset, which leads to a troubled mind. The ability to hyper focus and to ask Yahweh, and have answered, these broad stroke, yet essential questions is the next step.
• “Who am I to You Father, and what is my personal calling inside the body of the Messiah?”
• “What in my life, first in consciousness, and then in physical manifestation, would bring You the most glory?”
These questions should cause you to wonder just how many current personal priorities get in the way of you hearing the answers. Let’s take a look at just a few specific questions you might consider and how your answers affect the revelation of your calling:
1. Was Adam, before the fall (breach from perfected thinking), ever at risk of not having everything he needed to sustain his life and his personal calling?
2. Did the consequences of having to “toil” and “painful birth” remove the Father’s sovereign hand from our daily lives?
3. Is there any scriptural account that Abraham, Isaac, Israyl, Kepha, Shaul, or the Messiah Himself, were ever concerned that their basic provisions would be provided? And who provided them and why?
4. What are the common worries of mainstream American Christians today?
5. What are your greatest concerns?
These are just a few of many sample questions to help expose crucial mindsets, which will either hinder or lead to revelation about the calling in your life. If you are honest, many of the questions could be answered in a single statement. “American Christians spend most of their lives simply trying to “provide” for their families and, therefore, assume this is their calling in life.” Oh, how paradoxical this thinking is to creation. We pray instead that, at this very moment, His Holy Spirit would pierce your heart with this thought. “The revelation of your personal calling is already in you. The Messiah in you guarantees it.” If you have the courage and faith to accept that answer, it will expose all the deceptions in your own heart (mind). Then you are free to step into your destiny!
(#283 from Suffer Well Devotional Series©)
It’s never “just semantics.” Every word that proceeds from your mouth reveals your state of mind, and your state of mind is either completely holy or it isn’t. He who called you is holy, you also be holy in all your conduct, because it is written, “Be holy, for I Am holy.” (1 Peter 1:15-16) Can you have wrong thinking and still be holy? Can a house (mindset) be divided and still be whole? Yes, your house is your mindset, the thoughts that permeate your being! But Yahshua knew their thoughts, and said to them: “Every kingdom divided against itself is brought to desolation, and every city or house divided against itself will not stand.” (Matthew 12:25) How better can we demonstrate the undivided mind than by the words of Yahshua Himself? “I can of Myself [ego] do nothing. As I hear [the Father], I judge; and My judgment is righteous, because I do not seek My own will but the will of the Father who sent Me.” (John 5:30) Unless His will is your will, you are a house divided.
And now you are responsible for this reality. You can make no excuses, allow no room for compromise. As you embrace this truth, your mind will become soothed, calmness will overtake you, and your faith will be reassured. But, let’s go deeper and add an extraordinary nuance to your understanding.
This soothing experience is not taking place in your own mind. It is actually His Spirit in you, His mind in you that you are sensing. It is no longer you, but the Messiah who lives in you! (Galatians 2:20) For “who has known the mind of the Master that he may instruct Him?” But we have the mind of the Messiah. (1 Corinthians 2:16) He speaks in the Holy of Holies within His temple. You are that temple (1 Corinthians 3:16-17). And remember, flesh and blood (self) cannot enter this most holy place. Praise Yahweh that “you are not in the flesh but in the Spirit, if indeed the Spirit of the Almighty dwells in you.” (Romans 8:9)
If you are lazy, you may claim semantics are at work here; but the cost of doing so will be high. Rather than dismiss it, let this prayer marinate in your bones. “Father I know Your Spirit within me is always in a perfect state, complete in every way, lacking nothing. I deeply sense the effects of Your Spirit and how soothing You are. Thank you, and may I always proclaim that it is not I who lives, but You who lives in me. Let my life song sing…’I do not seek my own will, but the will of my Father who sent me.’”
(#269 from Suffer Well Devotional Series©)
He rules forever by His power. His eyes watch the nations, lest the rebels exalt themselves. (Psalm 66:7) Selah [ponder this]
If it is His power alone that rules all things, then you would do well to consider how it is you have reached any level of success or authority? “And Yahshua came and spoke to them, saying, ‘All authority has been given to Me in Heaven and on earth. Go therefore…'” (Matthew 28:18-19) If you have any authority at all, it is because He has passed the mantle to you. “Behold, I give you the authority to trample on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy, and nothing shall by any means hurt you.” (Luke 10:19) Therefore, if you’ve reached the “top” having never followed His leading to get there, then by what “power” did you arrive? “Not by might nor by [your own] power, but by My Spirit,” Says Yahweh of hosts. (Zechariah 4:6)
The author of true power, power which never diminishes, only releases such through His Spirit to the righteous (right thinking). Unfortunately, many of you will convince yourselves that you have been “good enough” to deserve His blessings and power. This personal “goodness” is nothing but a byproduct of “self” deception. “There is none righteous, no, not one; There is none who does good, no, not one.” (Romans 3:10, 12) And more so, what does the desire for, or the reliance on, personal power entail? It necessitates the use of tricks and manipulation. If you have “success” and it did not come through His power, then you have hijacked it. And remember, His eyes watch the nations, lest the rebels exalt themselves.
Conversely, if it is the power of Yahweh that has promoted you, then your success will always be accompanied by fruit in your life that has His signature on it: obedience, humility, repentance, and “self” realization. The latter, of course, meaning the realization that the “self” must die to make room for His true power to manifest in you.
What are you feeding on loved one? What desires do you have? Are they rooted and grounded in the perfect life of Yahshua the Messiah? A good way to know is to ask these questions; “Would He have cared about such things?” And, “Would He have done what I did to get them?” There is only one source of power loved one. Everything else is vanity and will be sifted like chaff from amongst the wheat.
Then I looked on all the works that my hands had done and on the labor in which I had toiled; and indeed all was vanity and grasping for the wind. There was no profit under the sun. (Ecclesiastes 2:11)
The Perfected Mind
(#249 from Suffer Well Devotional Series©)
All things were made through Him, and without Him nothing was made that was made. (John 1:3) The mind of Messiah is no less than the knowledge and wisdom of everything pertaining to sinless thinking. And the nuance we want you to grasp now is that the perfected mind itself is a creation of Yahweh for mankind. What an awesome perspective! Perfection in thoughts, and therefore by Holy design, perfection in actions, is a creation of the Almighty? In essence, Yahweh Himself is above perfection, beyond it, if you can imagine. Against such there is no law (Galatians 5:23).
Although perfection is commanded, “Therefore you shall be perfect, just as your Father in heaven is perfect”
(Matthew 5:48), how many of you are so emphatic that, “No one can be perfect!”? This equates to no less than a barefaced rejection of your full inheritance for which Messiah died. Don’t believe it?
· Whoever abides in Him does not sin. Whoever sins has neither seen Him nor known Him. (1 John 3:6)
· Whoever has been born of the Mighty One does not sin, for His seed remains in him; and he cannot sin, because he has been born of the Mighty One. (1 John 3:9)
· We know that whoever is born of the Mighty One does not sin; but he who has been born of the Mighty One keeps himself, and the wicked one does not touch him. (1 John 5:18)
If you continually excuse the lack of effort to reach for perfection, calling it humility, claiming that you are resisting the “self-indulgent” effort to be holy, again you tread dangerously close to trampling the shed blood underfoot. This is not humility loved one, but false humility. For if we sin willfully after we have received the knowledge of the truth, there no longer remains a sacrifice for sins… Of how much worse punishment, do you suppose, will he be thought worthy who has trampled the Son of the Almighty underfoot, counted the blood of the Covenant by which He was sanctified a common thing, and insulted the Spirit of grace? (Hebrews 10:26, 29)
A perfect mind is possible only because of Yahshua’s life manifesting in you and that is only available, or more precisely “mandated,” because of the blood He shed. For those who understand this, there are things you will need to remember. On your journey to perfected thinking, one crucial thing to grasp is humility, no, not just humility, vast humility. This is quite different from the false humility we just exposed.
Once you begin, through strict and disciplined obedience, to access the mind of perfection, you will be able to root out any and all deceptive patterns of thinking. You must first do this in yourself before you are free to recognize it in others. This is a penetrating and humbling experience. Part of perfection is the decreasing “need” to correct the errors of others. Like Messiah in you (Colossians 1:27), you will learn to first pray for others rather than being quick to rebuke and correct. Be still and know that He is Yahweh, not you (Psalm 46:10). Part of perfect mindedness is the reality that prayer is the most powerful and effective tool you have. Ah yes, the effective, fervent prayer of a righteous man avails much. (James 5:16)
Another crucial concept to understand is that the perfected mind speaks only after having exhausted every possible remedy and conclusion that fails to meet the Holy standard. In other words, a question like, “Well, did you think about this?” will always be met in the affirmative. How could you be at a perfected level of thinking otherwise? All avenues have been considered, and the perfected mind picks the perfect way every time. This is no less than Yahweh’s fullness in you loved one. With this type of thinking, how could the solution not always be perfect?
But when that which is perfect has come, then that which is in part will be done away. When I was a child, I spoke as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child; but when I became a man, I put away childish things. For now we see in a mirror, dimly, but then face to face. Now I know in part, but then I shall know just as I also am known. (1 Corinthians 13:10-12)
It takes vast humility to sit face to face with Messiah! It is what will draw you closer to the perfect mind, and when you arrive it is what will keep you there. And then, it will take you beyond!
(#240 from Suffer Well Devotional Series©)
As we go, we grow, and we set a path. –Michael David Beiter, Jr.
There comes a time when you realize that the edge you once stood on, that threshold where your utter despair and Yahweh’s comfort joined hands, was just “one edge,” for a new edge had come. You had persevered the anguish, believing that it could never be that tough again. But then, there it was again, a new edge with new circumstances, and that old pain. You thought you had grown, matured, and gained deeper spiritual insight. But, in an instant, you were crippled all over again.
Thankfully, in the moment you recognize the patterns; truly they are all you have. You realize the need to stay silent as you teeter on this new edge. You battle with memories of the regrets you had from the last breaking point; “I don’t want to think that again; I know what it says to You Father.” You purpose to make no impetuous moves, no emotional mistakes. You can’t afford to slip. “Don’t let me fall Father,” is repeated often in your silence. You meditate on your past victories, remembering how strong you felt after overcoming. Somehow you expected that the strength you had gained would be more permanent, not just a new arrow in your quiver, but a new bow. But this new crisis seems to vanquish the enlightenment gained from past victories. You wonder if you actually learned anything. Doubts enter in; “Am I a fool? Is any of this faith I claim even real? Are You real Father; are You here?” You become ashamed of these thoughts, but if you don’t reckon with them, that old friend sorrow will soon return.
Why is a devotional such as this remotely possible after so many others have expressed the power we possess to overcome? The answer is profoundly simple, His Holiness of course. The Holiness we will attain from this new “death” is far more than what we gained from the last edge we stood on. And each new edge is a fresh stone of remembrance on the path to Him, a reminder of His promises and His faithfulness (Joshua 4).
“You mean even when I think I have learned to be ‘unoffendable’ and pure of mind, Your high calling is purer still? And not only this, but that each edge creates something beautifully new in me, even when it makes me feel like I have now failed in an area I once thought conquered? Even if it makes me feel like I have forgotten everything I had previously learned?”
That’s correct loved one. Death, death, and another death is the path to His Holiness. The embodiment of strength: it is made perfect in weakness (2 Corinthians 12:9). We have held you to a Holy standard. We know that illuminating patterns, and what they have produced within you, is inspirational. This word was to remind you that when you reach the place where you can only cry, “I can’t do it!” that is when you are in the safest, securest, most glorious, and transformational place possible; you are in the Palm of Yahweh—in the pure essence of His Holiness. You are going to make it. He is everything He claims to be.
You will keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on You, because he trusts in You. (Isaiah 26:3)