May 19

John 7:1-31

Jesus celebrates the Feast of Tabernacles, which is celebrated at the end of September and the beginning of October. It is a festival of thanksgiving for the harvest. This festival also is thanksgiving for how the Lord led the Hebrews through the wilderness and brought them into their promised land. To commemorate their journey, the Jews would erect temporary shelters made of branches.

During this feast, all Jewish men were to return to Jerusalem. Jesus was cautious, knowing people would be looking to harm Him. Jesus came into the city secretly. When He was known, the rulers did try to apprehend Him, but He escaped because it wasn’t the right time. This shows us that no one could take Christ’s life, but He willingly laid it down in the proper time. More people looked to Him as being the Messiah.

Jesus is revealed in all the seven feasts God gave to the Jews. The seven feasts are in three groups. The first set are around Passover in the spring, and Christ is revealed in the sacrifice of Passover. The second set is Pentecost, 50 days after Passover. Christ is revealed in pouring out the Holy Spirit. The third set is around the Feast of Tabernacles. We believe this will be significant of His return when He gathers us in the rapture.

Jesus is coming for us one day! Let’s determine to live for Him.

2 Kings 23-25

There are two phrases I want to look at today. One is, “In his own eyes” and the other is “In the sight of the Lord.” We find both of these phrases over and over in Scripture. “In his own eyes” means in his own consideration or in his own opinion, from his perspective. When we say “In the sight of the Lord” we mean in God’s consideration or God’s opinion, from God’s perspective.

In Romans 12:16, it says that we should not be wise in our own opinion. Why? Because our opinion could be wrong. God’s opinion is never wrong because God is the definition of right and wrong.

In chapter 23, we read about King Josiah’s life, a life that was lived right in the sight of the Lord. Josiah made a covenant with the Lord to follow after Him. He restored Passover. He tore down anything that was not according to Scripture. We should also take inventory of our lives – is there anything we are allowing in our homes or our hearts that goes against the Bible or against our conscience? If so, we don’t need any strongholds holding us back from a full life with God. Let’s tear down those high places, and let Jesus be Lord over every area of our lives.

Josiah did what was right; however, because of Manasseh, the Lord had given His word to not only allow the northern tribes of Israel to go into captivity to Assyria; but He would also allow the southern tribes of Judah to go into captivity. To read more of God’s perspective, Isaiah was a prophet during these times, and he has much to say in his book.

Josiah was killed in battle at Megiddo by Pharaoh Necho in 608 B.C. The Pharoah removes Jehoahaz as the next king of Judah, and replaces him with Josiah’s son, Eliakim. Eliakim chooses to lead from wickedness.

In chapters 24-25, Judah was attacked and weakened under evil kings until King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon took Judah into captivity. Nebuchadnezzar burned Solomon’s great temple and palace, and he took all the treasures out of them.

This captivity lasts 70 years. The length of time is not random. This captivity was decided ahead of time by God – one year for every seventh year the people did not allow their land to rest as God commanded them, a span of 490 years. This was also known as the Sabbath year or the Shmita (Leviticus 25). That seventh year was also a remission year where debts were forgiven (Deuteronomy 15:1-6; 31:10-13).

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