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CHURCH OF THE NAZARENE

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Church of the Nazarene

Home Worship Hour

Dr. Walter Martin

 

 

 

Summer Of Prophecy

     Our summer of prophecy has been going quite well. How stimulating it is for me to review the many passages that speak of the return of our Lord. This August 14th will be my 33rd birthday in Jesus.

 How well I remember those early days when my eyes were first opened to the truth and relevance of Christ's return. If you have missed any messages, be sure to listen at our Internet Cathedral.

 I still am amazed at the Biblical laziness engulfing the evangelical church. Any vibrant revival has always included love for God's word at its heart and core. As always, Israel is the key to prophecy.

Ezekiel 36:22 �Therefore say to the house of Israel, �This is what the Sovereign LORD says: It is not for your sake, O house of Israel, that I am going to do these things, but for the sake of my holy name, which you have profaned among the nations where you have gone. 23 I will show the holiness of my great name, which has been profaned among the nations, the name you have profaned among them. Then the nations will know that I am the LORD, declares the Sovereign LORD, when I show myself holy through you before their eyes.� �

24 � �For I will take you out of the nations; I will gather you from all the countries and bring you back into your own land. 25 I will sprinkle clean water on you, and you will be clean; I will cleanse you from all your impurities and from all your idols. 26 I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit in you; I will remove from you your heart of stone and give you a heart of flesh. 27 And I will put my Spirit in you and move you to follow my decrees and be careful to keep my laws. 28 You will live in the land I gave your forefathers; you will be my people, and I will be your God.� �

37:24 � �My servant David will be king over them, and they will all have one shepherd. They will follow my laws and be careful to keep my decrees. 25 They will live in the land I gave to my servant Jacob, the land where your fathers lived. They and their children and their children's children will live there forever, and David my servant will be their prince forever. 26 I will make a covenant of peace with them; it will be an everlasting covenant. I will establish them and increase their numbers, and I will put my sanctuary among them forever. 27 My dwelling place will be with them; I will be their God, and they will be my people. 28 Then the nations will know that I the LORD make Israel holy, when my sanctuary is among them forever.� �

Zechariah 12:1 This is the word of the LORD concerning Israel. The LORD, who stretches out the heavens, who lays the foundation of the earth, and who forms the spirit of man within him, declares: 2 �I am going to make Jerusalem a cup that sends all the surrounding peoples reeling. Judah will be besieged as well as Jerusalem. 3 On that day, when all the nations of the earth are gathered against her, I will make Jerusalem an immovable rock for all the nations.�
 10 �And I will pour out on the house of David and the inhabitants of Jerusalem a spirit of grace and supplication. They will look on Me, the One they have pierced, and they will mourn for Him as one mourns for an only child, and grieve bitterly for Him as one grieves for a firstborn son. 11 On that day the weeping in Jerusalem will be great, like the weeping of Hadad Rimmon in the plain of Megiddo.�

Zechariah 13:8 �In the whole land," declares the LORD, "two-thirds will be struck down and perish; yet one-third will be left in it. 9 This third I will bring into the fire; I will refine them like silver and test them like gold. They will call on my name and I will answer them; I will say, �They are my people,� and they will say, �The LORD is our God.� �

Zechariah 14   The LORD Comes and Reigns

1 A day of the LORD is coming when your plunder will be divided among you. 2 I will gather all the nations to Jerusalem to fight against it; the city will be captured, the houses ransacked, and the women raped. Half of the city will go into exile, but the rest of the people will not be taken from the city. 3 Then the LORD will go out and fight against those nations, as he fights in the day of battle. 4 On that day his feet will stand on the Mount of Olives, east of Jerusalem, and the Mount of Olives will be split in two from east to west, forming a great valley, with half of the mountain moving north and half moving south. 5 You will flee by my mountain valley, for it will extend to Azel. You will flee as you fled from the earthquake in the days of Uzziah king of Judah. Then the LORD my God will come, and all the holy ones with him.

These are some of many clear passages that indicate the city of Jerusalem will be the focal point of the world just before the return of Messiah. To spiritualize them makes no sense to me, especially in light of the events of history since 1948. Now we don't judge each other over prophecy, but you do need to ask yourself why so many Christians deny these passages mean what they say? Why would the Holy Spirit be so specific only to confuse the issue by the need to spiritualize the passages? It makes no sense to me. In my last study, I pointed out the two points of view regarding the Bible. The super naturalist agrees that the Bible is the word of God; then proceeds to twist the meanings in these areas to mean the opposite of what is written. Then we come to the anti-super naturalist. The Bible is respected but really not taken authoritatively. That is seen in the recent acceptance of an openly gay bishop in the Episcopal Church. We live in a postmodern world.

John 3:16 "For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life", is now hate speech in some countries. Long ago Isaiah warned us," (Isaiah 5:20) �Woe to those who call evil good and good evil, who put darkness for light and light for darkness, who put bitter for sweet and sweet for bitter."

We are right on schedule...........Jesus is coming! More than ever we need to stay close to the Lord and be in the word of God.

Pray for the radio show LET IT GROW. It airs every Saturday from noon until 1 PM on 970/WWDJ AM radio. If you have any questions regarding the Bible, call in and be a part of the program.

I trust the rest of summer will be a blessing. The God of peace be with you all.

Agape, Pastor Charlie Rizzo