Dear God, open a door for my message, so that I may proclaim the mystery of Christ. I pray that I may proclaim it clearly, as I should. Colossians 4:3-4

R4C

R4C
Reconciliation and Forgiveness ~ I am Sorry * Please Forgive Me * Thank You * I Love You. ~ Reconciliation and Forgiveness ~ I am Sorry * Please Forgive Me * Thank You * I Love You. ~ Reconciliation and Forgiveness ~ I am Sorry * Please Forgive Me * Thank You * I Love You.
Psalm 19:14, May the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be pleasing in your sight, O LORD, my Rock and my Redeemer.

Wednesday, 2 March 2016

God has spoken through the prophets ....


In the Old Testament, Israel’s fundamental experience of God is: “Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God is one Lord” (Deutronomy 6:4). Again and again the prophets exhort the people to abandon their false gods and to convert to the one God: “For I am God, and there is no other” (Isaiah 45:22). 
Again and again, God sends prophets to his people to call them to conversion and to the renewal of the covenant. The prophets proclaim that God will establish a new and everlasting covenant, which will bring about a radical renewal and definitive redemption. This covenant will be open to all human beings.

The books by prophets in the Old Testament,

Isaiah (Is); Isaiah, whose name means "God is salvation." Isaiah, the son of Amoz, was a member of the royal family. He made his first public appearance as the Divinely inspired prophet in the year of Uzziah's affliction with leprosy, and he ministered to the people for about ninety years, during the reigns of kings Uzziah, Jotham, Ahaz, and Hezekiah.
Jeremiah (Jer); Jeremiah, whose name means "God has uplifted." Jeremiah, the son of Hilkiah, a Levitical priest, was likely born between 650 and 645 B.C. He was from the small village of Anathoth, about three miles northeast of Jerusalem in the territory of Benjamin (Jeremiah 1:1). It was through Jeremiah’s childhood training for holy service in the priesthood that God began grooming him for his future role.
Lamentations (Lam); While the author of Lamentations remains nameless within the book, strong evidence from both inside and outside the text points to the prophet Jeremiah as the author.
Baruch (Bar); Ezekiel, whose name means "Blessed." The disciple of Jeremiah, and the traditional author of the deuto-canonical book, which bears his name. He was the son of Nerias (Jeremiah 32:12, 32:16;36:4, 8, 32; Baruch 1:1).
Ezekiel (Ezek); Ezekiel, whose name means “strengthened by God.” Ezekiel grew up in Jerusalem, served as a priest in the temple and was among the second group of captives taken to Babylon along with King Jehoiachin. While in Babylon he became a prophet of God, and his ministry began with condemnation and judgment of the nation Judah.
Daniel (Dan); Daniel, whose name means “God is my judge.” The biblical account of Daniel the prophet begins as he and other young men from Judah were taken captive by King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon (Daniel 1:1-4) in approximately 604 B.C. This captivity of citizens of Judah in Babylon lasted for 70 years, as God had foretold through the prophet Jeremiah (Jeremiah 25:11).
Hosea (Hos); The name Hosea means "Salvation" or "Deliverance." Hosea is the first of the twelve prophets in the Book of the Twelve. He was a native and citizen of Israel and followed Amos whom he may have heard in Bethel. His prophecy began with Jeroboam II, when the northern kingdom of Israel was at its zenith, and continued for the next 40 years until just before Samaria fell to Assyria in 722 B.C.
Joel (Joel); The name Joel means "Yahweh is God." Joel is the second of the twelve prophets in the Book of the Twelve. The Book of the Twelve Prophets was originally on one parchment roll because of the brevity of the text, and together formed one Book of the 24 Books of Hebrew Scripture. The son of Phatuel, and nothing is known of his life. The scene of his labours was the Southern Israelite Kingdom of Judah, and probably its capital Jerusalem, for he repeatedly refers to temple and altar.
Amos (Amos); The name Amos means "Carried." Amos is the third of the twelve prophets in the Book of the Twelve. The Prophet Amos lived during the long reign of King Jeroboam II. He was from the southern Kingdom of Judahbut preached in the northern Kingdom of Israel.
Obadiah (Obad); The name Obadiah means "Servant of God." Obadiah is not only the shortest prophecy, but also the shortest book of the Old Testament. The prophecy is largely concerned with the condemnation of Edom (descendants of Esau) for treachery toward their brother Israel (descendants of Jacob) and the resultant punishment Edom will endure.
Jonah (Jon); The name Jonah means "Dove." One of the greatest prophets during the time of Jeroboam II was Jonah the son of Amitai, who, as a prophet disciple, had anointed Jehu and who, therefore, enjoyed the king's benevolence.
Micah (Mic); The name Micah means "Who is like God." Micah is the sixth of the twelve prophets in the Book of the Twelve. Micah is called the Morasthite. This word means that he was an inhabitant of Moresheth Gath, a small village. It was about 22 miles south-west from Jerusalem. He was a prophet when Jotham, Ahaz and Hezekiah were kings of Judah. They were kings from 756 to 697 BC.
Nahum (Nahum); The name Nahum means "Comforter." Nahum is the seventh of the twelve prophets in the Book of the Twelve. Assyria was a country to the north and east of Israel. For many years, when Nahum, Habakkuk and Zephaniah lived, it ruled most of the world. In 722 B.C. Limited information that is known about Nahum. The Book of Nahum was written to between 663 and 612 B.C
Habakkuk (Hab); The name Habakkuk means "Embrace." Habakkuk is the eighth of the twelve prophets in the Book of the Twelve. Habakkuk makes no mention of Assyria, but he refers to the increasing Chaldean (also known as Babylonian) power. Habakkuk was commissioned to foretell the invasion and destruction of the land by the Chaldeans.
Zephaniah (Zeph); The name Zephaniah means "God has hiddden." The prophet Zephaniah was evidently a person of considerable social standing in Judah and was probably related to the royal line. Zephaniah was a fourth-generation descendant of Hezekiah, a notable king of Judah from 715 to 686 B.C. The intent of the author was to announce to Judah God’s approaching judgment and to encourage repentance.
Haggai (Hag); The name Haggai means "Festival." The book of Haggai was written in 520 B.C. With the fall of Babylon about 19 years earlier in 539 B.C., the fortunes of the Jewish captives had changed. The Persian King Cyrus encouraged the captive people to return to their country of origin and to rebuild the Jerusalem temple so that their God would once again have a house to live in (Ezra 1:1-4). The theme of the prophecy of Haggai is "get busy and build the Lord's house. In Haggai's day the Lord's house was the temple, and you may remember that they had some difficulty building the temple after the Babylonian captivity.
Zechariah (Zech); The name Zechariah means "God remembers." Zechariah was a Levite who was born in Babylon (Neh 12:1, 16). He was the son of Berekiah and the grandson of Iddo the priest (Zech 1:1; cf. 12:4, 16; Ezra 5:1; 6:14). Both Haggai and Zechariah were called and sent by God to motivate the inhabitants of Jerusalem to complete the construction of the temple. They played a key role in rousing the elders and people under Zerubbabel the governor and Joshua the high priest to complete the building program (Ezra 5:1-2; 6:14). Zechariah is the eleventh of the twelve prophets in the Book of the Twelve.
Malachi (Mal); The name Malachi means "My messenger." Malachi said that God accused the people. They were doing many wrong things. They did not give the best gifts to God (Malachi 1:6-14). The priests did not teach well (Malachi 2:1-9). The men divorced their wives without a proper reason (Malachi 2:13-16). Malachi is the last (twelfth) of the twelve prophets in the Book of the Twelve.

It was the Spirit of God who spoke through the mouth of Isaiah, Jeremiah, Ezekiel, and other prophets. After the prophet Malachi, there were 400 years of silence between Malachi and the coming of the Messiah (the time between the Old Testament and New Testaments), during which God did not speak to the Jewish people. “Behold, I am going to send you Elijah the prophet before the coming of the great and terrible day of the LORD. He will restore the hearts of the fathers to their children and the hearts of the children to their fathers, so that I will not come and smite the land with a curse" (Malachi 4:5-6) and after 400 years came John the Baptist, the last of these prophets, (as was foretold in Isaiah 40:3) not only foresaw the coming of the Messiah. He also met him and proclaimed him as the liberator from the power of sin.

A voice cries out: “In the wilderness prepare the way of the Lord,
make straight in the desert a highway for our God. (Isaiah 40:3)



With the spirit and power of Elijah he will go before him, to turn the hearts of parents to their children, and the disobedient to the wisdom of the righteous, to make ready a people prepared for the Lord. (Luke 1:17)

Bear fruits worthy of repentance. Do not begin to say to yourselves, ‘We have Abraham as our ancestor’; for I tell you, God is able from these stones to raise up children to Abraham. Even now the ax is lying at the root of the trees; every tree therefore that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. (Luke 3:8-9)

I baptize you with water; but one who is more powerful than I is coming; I am not worthy to untie the thong of his sandals. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and fire. (Luke 3:16)

Long ago God spoke to our ancestors in many and various ways by the prophets, but in these last days he has spoken to us by a Son, whom he appointed heir of all things, through whom he also created the worlds. (Heb 1:1-2)

During the sermon on the mount as recorded in the Gospel of Matthew, Jesus said, "Do not think that I have come to abolish the law or the prophets; I have come not to abolish but to fulfill. For truly I tell you, until heaven and earth pass away, not one letter, not one stroke of a letter, will pass from the law until all is accomplished." (Matthew 5:17-18) Jesus taught repentance from sin which is clearly defined as the transgression of the laws of God (I John 3:4).

During Jesus’ life in the flesh, all the Old Testament prophecies concerning His first coming were fulfilled. These prophecies included His miraculous conception and birth from the virgin Mary, the flight to Egypt to escape Herod, the return to Galilee and dwelling in Nazareth, the announcing of His ministry by John the Baptist, the healing and mighty works during His ministry, the preaching of the Gospel throughout the land of Judea and Galilee, the persecution and suffering that followed, His death by crucifixion, the place of His burial, and the time of His glorious resurrection. 

Hope is trusting in what God has promised us in creation, in the prophets, but especially in Jesus Christ, even though we do not yet see it. God’s Holy Spirit is given to us so that we can patiently hope for the Truth.

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