Weekly Devotional 8-17-15 God is Still at Work
In answer to a question that the prophet Daniel had asked God concerning the end of the seventy year captivity that he and his fellow Judahites had been suffering, the angel Gabriel had been dispatched by God to not only answer this question, but to tell him of Judah’s future. Gabriel told Daniel, “24Seventy weeks are determined for your people and for your holy city, To finish the transgression, To make an end of sins, To make reconciliation for iniquity, To bring in everlasting righteousness, To seal up vision and prophecy, And to anoint the Most Holy. 25Know therefore and understand, That from the going forth of the command To restore and build Jerusalem Until Messiah the Prince, There shall be seven weeks (49 years) and sixty-two weeks (434 years); The street shall be built again, and the wall, Even in troublesome times. 26And after the sixty-two weeks (years) Messiah shall be cut off, but not for Himself.” (Daniel 9:24-26).
Gabriel told Daniel that at the end of the seventy year captivity God would culminate His plan for Judah and Israel by: 1) “finishing their transgression”; 2) “making an end of their sins”; 3) “making reconciliation for their iniquity”; 4) “bringing in everlasting righteousness”; 5) “sealing up vision and prophecy”; 6) “anointing the Most Holy place.” Gabriel told Daniel that God would accomplish this after four hundred ninety years (490 years) had elapsed. He then broke that 490 year period into 3 segments. At the end of 49 years the city of Jerusalem and its wall was to be rebuilt and at the end of the next 434 years Judah and Israel’s Messiah would present Himself, but they would reject Him. Not only reject Him, but would cut Him off, end His life. Jesus was and is that Messiah. At the end of the 483 years of the prophesied 490 year period in which God was to accomplish the six things mentioned above, Jesus was killed. Israel’s Messiah and man’s Savior was killed without God accomplishing what He said He would do, Uh, oh.
Not to worry. There are still 7 years of that 490 year prophecy remaining and at a set time God will accomplish what He said He would do. The prophet Jeremiah writing of this time writes, “31Behold, the days are coming, says the LORD, when I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel and with the house of Judah— 32not according to the covenant that I made with their fathers in the day that I took them by the hand to lead them out of the land of Egypt, My covenant which they broke, though I was a husband to them, says the LORD. 33But this is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, says the LORD: I will put My law in their minds, and write it on their hearts; and I will be their God, and they shall be My people. 34No more shall every man teach his neighbor, and every man his brother, saying, ‘Know the LORD,’ for they all shall know Me, from the least of them to the greatest of them, says the LORD. For I will forgive their iniquity, and their sin I will remember no more.” (Jeremiah 31:31-34 NKJV).
God is at work. Presently He is preparing Israel for the re-entrance of Her Messiah, but He is also at work among we who are Gentiles. God is calling to Himself those who are to be saved. As the Holy Spirit breathed the breath of life into the lifeless body of Adam, so is He breathing spiritual life into those who are to respond to God’s calling. The Apostle Paul speaks of this in his letter to the Ephesians and to us indirectly.
“1And you He made alive, who were dead in trespasses and sins, 2in which you once walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, the spirit who now works in the sons of disobedience, 3among whom also we all once conducted ourselves in the lusts of our flesh, fulfilling the desires of the flesh and of the mind, and were by nature children of wrath, just as the others. 4But God, who is rich in mercy, because of His great love with which He loved us, 5even when we were dead in trespasses, made us alive together with Christ (by grace you have been saved), 6and raised us up together, and made us sit together in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus, 7that in the ages to come He might show the exceeding riches of His grace in His kindness toward us in Christ Jesus.” (Ephesians 2:1-7 NKJV).
God has not left mankind, neither Israel nor we Gentiles to take care of ourselves. He is at work, accomplishing only what He can accomplish causing spiritual life to be where there was no spiritual life. Thank you, Father, Son and Holy Spirit.
Transforming Power; The Work of God on Behalf of Man