Zechariah

Zechariah

AFTER THE RETURN of some of the Jews from exile in Babylon around 520 bc, in the reign of Darius I of Persia, Zechariah received prophecies from God about the future of Jerusalem and of God’s people. First prophecy (1:1–6) This is a call to God’s people to return to Him and to the words of His former prophets. Then He will bless them. Second prophecy (1:7– 6:15) This consists of eight visions which look ahead to God’s dealings with Israel, and encompass the cutting off of oppressing nations, the restoration of Jerusalem, the rise and fall of false worship, and the judgement of the nations when the Messiah comes. Third prophecy (chapters 7–14) This fills out the message from “the Lord of hosts”, whose armies fight for Israel. Chapter 7: God appeals to His people to hear Him. Chapter 8: He promises a future restoration. Chapter 9: the Greek

Haggai

Haggai

HAGGAI WAS SENT by God to the Jews who had returned from captivity in Babylon. They had been led back by Zerubbabel (of royal descent) and Joshua (a High Priest). The foundations of the new temple had been laid in Jerusalem, but after opposition from neighbouring nations enthusiasm for the building work had waned. Now, 18 years on, God’s message through Haggai and Zechariah (see Ezra 5:1) was intended to stir the nation into action. “Consider Your Ways!”Not only were the returned exiles distracted by adversaries hindering the work, but they were becoming comfortable and complacent: “Thus speaks the Lord of hosts, saying: ‘This people says, “The time has not come, the time that the Lord’s house should be built.” ’… Is it time for you yourselves to dwell in your panelled houses, and this temple to lie in ruins?” (Haggai 1:2, 4). They did respond, and the temple was

Your E-mails- May 2021

Your E-mails- May 2021

In your magazine you speak of Israelites and Jews as one and the same. They’re not! Jews are Israelites but not all Israelites are Jews. THAT’S CORRECT. ‘Jew’ actually means ‘man of Judah’, and Judah was just one of the 12 tribes of Israel. So why do we use the name ‘Jews’ to refer to all people of Israel? The kingdom of Israel began around 1000 bc. Its history is recorded in the Bible books of Samuel, Kings and Chronicles. In time the kingdom split in two—ten tribes formed the northern kingdom which is known as Israel, and two tribes formed the southern kingdom. Judah was the dominant of these tribes and so the southern kingdom was known as Judah. The northern kingdom was destroyed by the Assyrians around 700 bc and the ten tribes were scattered. The southern kingdom was destroyed by the Babylonians around 600 bc, but its

The Glory of Israel

The Glory of Israel

ALTHOUGH HIS PEOPLE were so frequently disobedient and unfaithful, God was supremely patient with them. As the prophet Isaiah reminded them: “I have stretched out My hands all day long to a rebellious people, who walk in a way that is not good, according to their own thoughts” (Isaiah 65:2). Some suggest that because of Israel’s unfaithfulness, which culminated in them rejecting and killing God’s own Son, He has disowned the nation of Israel. This is not what the Bible says. For example this is what the angel Gabriel told Mary: “Do not be afraid, Mary, for you have found favour with God. And behold, you will conceive in your womb and bring forth a Son, and shall call his name Jesus. He will be great, and will be called the Son of the Highest; and the Lord God will give him the throne of his father David. And he