OLd Testament Prophets
Second Semester 1950-51
Dr. W. Noble King
Bethany Nazarene College
All Rights Reserved
This document consists of
notes taken by students who attended Dr. King's class at Bethany Nazarene
College. The notes therefore reflect student response to Dr. King's lectures
and do not necessarily represent fully or accurately his thought in all
respects. I (JR) received these notes from Paul Harper of Smith Center,
Kansas who took the class in 1950-51.
The Book of Daniel
In the fourth year
of Jehoiakim, king of Judah. Nebuchadnezzar, having besieged Jerusalem,
and having its king made a tributary (608-7 B.C.) carried away a number
of captives (in this case they would have been hostages) to Babylon.
Among the captives were Daniel and his three friends, namely Hananiah,
Mishael, and Azariah. (See A. Clarke). If the seventy years
of captivity then began that would carry us to 536. Seventy years
from 536 would carry us to 606. It probably took some months after
the Edict from Cyrus was issued. The seventy years of captivity evidently
began with the overthrow of king Jehoiakim.
The book of Daniel consists
of two parts.
a. Chapters 1-6 consists
of the experiences of Daniel and his three companions under Nebuchadnezzar
and under Belshazzar and Darius the Medes in Babylon. This part is
mainly historical with some prophecy in the second chapter. This
part was also written in Hebrew and Chaldean. Chapter 1:1-2:3 is
in Hebrew; 2:4-6:25 is in Chaldean. The language in which it was
written appears to have been determined by the other people to whom it
b. Chapter 7:1-12:13
consists largely of prophesy. Prophesy and subject matter.
That is, they often dealt with the same events under different figures.
It also was written in Hebrew (See PHC).
The modern slant is that
chapters 2:4b-7:22 were written in West Aramaic, another name for Chaldean
and chapters 1 and 8-12 in late Hebrew and with Greek and Persian loan
There is no good reason why we should not ascribe the book of Daniel to
the Daniel referred to therein. Daniel lived during the whole of
the Babylonian Captivity, down to the third year of Cyrus (Dan. 10:1).
He is mentioned outside of this book (Ezek. 14:14,20). Together with
Noah and Job (Ezek. 28:3). In the former passages his righteousness
is spoken of; in the latter, his wisdom. Josephus’ statements with
regard to Daniel prove that Daniel was a well-known figure before the Grecian
Antiquities of the Jews,
X,11.1). Apparently Daniel died in exile, not having returned home
with the migrating crowds.
Part I. - Chapters 1:1-6:28
1. Chapter One records the
captivity of Daniel and his companions in the third year of the captivity
of Jehoiakim. They were trained for Civil Service at the court of
Nebuchadnezzar in Babylon.
Jehoiakim was put under tribute
but he rebelled and was subdued by neighboring Babylonian tribes.
During this stage, Jehoiakim was slain and buried with the burial of an
ass, evidently at the first of three years of tribute to Babylon. Vessels
from the house of God, captive children, and young men were taken to Babylon
(606 B.C.). The seventy years begin here (2 Kings 24:6a; Dan. 1:16).
In the third year
of the reign of Nebuchadnezzar, who then marched to Carchemish and defeated
Pharoah Necho. He then besieged Jerusalem and defeated Jehoiakim
and bound him to Babylon. He either never carried him to Babylon
or returned him to his throne, for he rebelled three years later and he
was buried shamefully (2 Chron. 36:6-8).
There appears to have been
a large group selected as those from Judah are mentioned as from Judah
so they must have been other groups. (Dan. 1:6a). Those young men
were to be taught the language and the wisdom of the Chaldeans. They were
to eat of the King’s meat and wine Daniel 1:5. This was to continue for
a period of three years (five years of our time, school time). Then Nebuchadnezzar,
himself was to evaluate them. The first thing to happen to them was
a change of name. Their Jewish names had a religious meaning in Judaism
and was changed to have a heathen significance Belteshazzar, Shadrach,
Meschach, Abednego. This change and environment did not change their
religious experience. Their devotion to God was as steady as ever
and their love to God was as steady as ever.
They were placed in the royal
school of science and there their first test arose. The wine and
the meat that they were to eat had been first dedicated to the heathen
god and had they eaten, they would have been identified with the heathen
religion of the land and they refused in the wisest possible way.
They requested a ten-day trial of bread and pulse (vegetable diet).
Pulse – seeds. Naturally they looked better than the other children
were gorging themselves
with intoxicants did and unhealthy foods did. Their request was granted.
At the end of the three years
they came before Nebuchadnezzar and in his presence. He probably
gave them their questions. They were found to be much wiser than
others of their sorts. Daniel was first then the other three followed
him. Nebuchadnezzar was very learned or could not keep kingship.
Chapter Two deals with the
dream of Nebuchadnezzar in which he saw a four-fold image, which stands
for four great world empires.
The dream is dated in the
second year of the reign of Nebuchadnezzar. That could not have been
more than five years after Daniel was in Babylon. Daniel was still
a very young man — probably now about twenty-five years old.
Nebuchadnezzar dreamed a
dream and then forgot it, but it left a terrible impression on him. Hence
he called in the wise men — the old timers, not the recent graduates.
He demanded them to tell him the dream and the interpretation. They
told him this was unreasonable. He told them how could they give
an interpretation that was sure unless they knew what the dream was.
They had a time limit and if they failed, they were to be killed and their
houses destroyed. This included all the wise men even the recent
Jewish graduates. (2:4-6, 10, and 12.)
Daniel went to Arioch, the
captain of the king’s guard, to find out the matter. Daniel then
apparently went to Nebuchadnezzar in person and asked for an extension
of time for he did not know of the dream till then. He went home
and told his three friends. They went to prayer. God revealed
the whole thing to Daniel in the night. (2:14, 16, 17, 19.)
Daniel then requested Arioch
that he be presented before Nebuchadnezzar. He appeared before him
and told Nebuchadnezzar that there was a God in heaven above who could
and had revealed the dream unto him. The brightness of the image
was excellent and its form terrible (2:31). “This image’s head was gold,
and his breast and arms were of silver. His belly and thighs were
of brass; his legs were of iron and his feet part of iron and part of clay”
(2:32-33). A small stone fell upon the image, smashing first its feet then
the whole image was ground to powder. Then the stone occupied the
earth (2:34-35). This is
the first and Second Coming of Christ seen together.
Daniel also interpreted the
dream. An inferior kingdom was to defeat him. This was done
by Cyrus the Persian through Darius the Mede. In turn the Persians
were defeated by Alexander the Great; the Greeks were in turn defeated
by Rome. The head of gold lasted about seventy years. Belshazzar
was probably the grandson of Nebuchadnezzar. The breasts were of
silver – inferior in quality and unity and referred to the Medes and Persians.
It lasted about two hundred years. With the exception of Cyrus himself,
the rest of the Medo-Persian kings were probably the most degrading line
of kings as has ever ruled an empire. The belly and sides referred
to the Greco-Macedonian Empire of Alexander the Great. As the empire
fell when he dies, it was divided between his four generals. Two were stronger
– the house of the Seleuceda in the North and the Ptolemy in the South.
Rome succeeded the Grecians. The legs were of iron – strong but weak
as they later mixed with other peoples. In fact her later rulers
were foreigners. The image was all of one piece. It was ground
to powder as a piece. The little stone hit the feet and then ground
the whole image and then tilled the whole earth. We have here the
first and Second Comings of Christ seen together. Their oneness is
not as clear as in Isa. 9:6, but it is there nevertheless in 2:33-35.
The ten toes refer to the ten kingdoms of the Romans. Ten is also
a symbol of material completeness as is seven in religious field.
There is no scripture teaching that the Roman Empire is to be revived,
neither is there any against. We are not commanded to look for the
Roman Empire, but for the immediate coming of the Christ.
Chapter Three deals with
the image of gold that Nebuchadnezzar set up in the plains of Dura.
The image was 60 cubits high
(90 ft.) and 6 cubits wide (6 ft.). It was not necessarily solid,
but was at least plated with gold so that it looked pretty solid, however
it could have been really solid. (3:1).
All the rulers were bidden
to the dedication of the image and were evidently commanded to stand and
worship before it. (3:2,3)
A herald cried that all were
to fall down and worship the image at the beginning of music. Those
who did not worship were to be thrown into the fiery furnace. (3:4-7)
All the people and rulers
fell down to worship but Daniel’s three friends. Daniel is not mentioned
here. He was evidently away. His three friends are the heroes
here. They were evidently already promoted to offices of great estate.
Nebuchadnezzar was angry
and commanded his sentence to be executed. They were cast in.
The guards who did so were slain but the three walked in the fire in the
presence of the fourth – Christ himself. He must have been in glorious
apparel for Nebuchadnezzar said he saw one like unto the Son of God (3:21,
23, 26). This is a type of the witnesses being sustained by Christ
during the first half of the tribulation. Nebuchadnezzar was a type
of the anti-Christ.
The God of the three was
exalted to a world position in the relations of the empire, and the three
to world leadership (3:29-30). The prophetic picture is this:
the world, and possibly the anti-Christ along with the golden image.
The anti-Christ wins the worship of the world by gold and not by the sword.
All shall have to worship
the anti-Christ. The Jews refuse and the anti-Christ goes to destroy them.
Christ appears and fights for them and conquers.
Christ becomes the world
ruler, and the Jews are promoted to world rulership.
Chapter Four contains the
record of Nebuchadnezzar’s dream concerning the great tree.
all peoples, languages and nations that dwell on earth, and then acknowledged
the goodness of the high God toward him, and declared that His kingdom
was everlasting from generation to generation. This information is in verses
1 and 2 of Chapter four. Nebuchadnezzar now regards himself as a universal
monarch. Some time must have therefore elapsed since he took the
throne. He still called Bel his god.
Nebuchadnezzar was at ease
— kingdom was at rest — when he dreamed a dream which caused him to be
troubled (4:5). All the wise men (magicians) were brought in.
Daniel being chief of them all would be brought in last (Ellicott).
The king told them the dream. They failed to interpret it.
Daniel was then brought in (4:7-8).
The king told Daniel his
dream this time. It was a tree in the midst of the earth. It
grew and was great and reached to heaven and filled the earth (4:10, 12).
The leaves were fair. The fruit much. The beasts rested under
it and the fowls rested in its branches. All flesh fed of it.
A Herald from heaven was
commanded to cut down the tree and to trim it thoroughly, but the stump
was to be left in the earth and banded with brass and iron. The stump
was to be neglected until seven times (years) had passed over it.
The tree was identified with man, in that its man’s heart was to be changed
to a beast’s heart (4:13-17).
The king declared that Daniel
could make the dream known (4:18 cd). Daniel pondered for an hour
in troubled thought, as the dream was against the king and in favor of
his enemies (4:19). The tree was Nebuchadnezzar himself (4:22).
Nebuchadnezzar was to be driven from the haunts of men and was to make
his abode with the beasts of the field and to be wet with the dew of heaven
until seven times passed over him. This was to be a judgment on him
for pride (4:25).
The stump was to be banded
with iron and brass and was again to grow, so the kingdom was to be made
sure to Nebuchadnezzar. Daniel urged him to repent and thus put off
the evil day (4:27).
At the end of the 12 months
all that happened to the king (4:29). He walked and strutted in his
palace. He bragged about himself for building great Babylon (4:30).
God spoke to him from heaven, and in the same hour it all took place.
His hair grew like eagle’s feathers and his nails like birds’ claws (4:33).
(There is a disease called Zoanthropia in which one thinks himself as something
and then imitates that something. The king fancied himself an ox
and therefore acted like one.)
His reason did leave him
for at the end of the period his reason returned, and he blessed the God
of heaven. At the same time his glory and kingdom were returned (4:34,
The picture is this:
The tree represented Nebuchadnezzar
who represented the world. The tree was destroyed, but the stump
Madness hit the king because
of self-exaltation for a period of seven years at the end of which his
kingdom was handed back to him.
The seven years represented
the seven years of tribulation madness due to come because of the people
who followed the anti-Christ. It is a tribulation picture.
If Nebuchadnezzar died about
561 B.C. that would give him approximately 43-45 years of reign.
His son Evil-Merodach succeeded him but was murdered by his own brother-in-law
Nergal-shar-user, who ruled for four years. After him came Labasha-Marduk,
who in turn fell a victim to conspiracy and was succeeded by Nabonidus
(father of Belshazzar) who in turn took sides with Crosus in the battle
between Croesus and Cyrus. Cyrus determined to get even with him
for it and marched against him for it. This Nabonidus was the father of
Belshazzar, who was called the son of Nebuchadnezzar. Belshazzar’s
mother was evidently a daughter or granddaughter of Nebuchadnezzar.
Chapter Five deals with the
famous or infamous feast of Belshazzar. The empire is thought to
have fallen about 25 years after the death of Nebuchadnezzar (Ellicott).
This would give Nebuchadnezzar 43 or 45 years of rulership. Thirty
years are placed between the fourth and fifth chapters.
The kingdom was ruled by
two monarchs. When one was off, one was home to protect it. This
was true at its fall. Nabonidus was off with one army and his son
was home with the other.
Cyrus took after Nabonidus
and Darius was to go after Belshazzar. The river ran along a ridge.
Darius cut the banks and the river flowed around into the low land.
And then his army rushed through on the riverbed. This bed was tile,
hence was solid.
The feast was for a thousand
lords evidently in honor of Bel their god. The feast was for
Belshazzar’s 30th birthday and Bel. Drunken orgies followed.
With this we are familiar. God wrote on the wall, and Daniel was
called in from semi-retirement. He read the fateful death sentence to the
king and to the empire. That night Belshazzar was slain and Darius
was made king, being then about 62 years old. This happened in 538
B.C. Darius was uncle of Cyrus (5:30, 31).
This section is added from Major Prophets class notes from
Paul Harper, taken in 1949. By request Dr King added a more detailed description
of the great hall and the dimensions of Babylon. Dr. King used this material
in a sermon that I heard him preach in Chapel in either 1963 or 1964.
(John Ross 8-15 2000)
The feast was for one thousand
Lords (1000 tables one lord at each table). Each warlord had from 50 –300
of his wives with him. The warlord went up to the blackboard and wrote
exploits of the King. Peacocks were trained to run among the crowd pulling
wagons with food in them and the guest helped themselves. Evidently the
feast was in honor of Belshazzar’s birthday and in honor of a pagan God.
Dimensions of Babylon. It
was built on a plain with canals intersecting it. There were strips of
shrubbery along the canals. The Euphrates River fed these canals. There
were four arches that spanned the river. They had stored up a food supply
for fifteen years. There were vacant spaces with in the walls used for
farming. Babylon was 15 miles square. The wall was 60 miles in circumference.
The outer wall was 700 feet at the bottom and 350 feet high and 300 feet
wide at the top. A racecourse, for 7 war chariots was on top of the outer
wall. They could run at night. It was built of brick 18”” long (a cubit).
The outside of the outer bricks contained paintings and decorations. The
sun rose and made the walls glisten and glitter like gold.
There were 250 gigantic pillars
on the outer wall. Each was erected in honor of some famous warlord. Each
had his name on it. On top of the pillars were containers filled mostly
with pitch, and lit at night. Night was banished from Babylon.
Another wall within the outer
wall was 250 feet high. On top of it Babylon kept a standing army to pour
boiling lead on the enemy.
A great ditch on the outer
wall was filled water. A jackknife bridge at each outer gate spanned the
ditch. The bridge was closed at night. The streets were tiled. They could
flood the streets and when they did the water came around to the riverbed.
There were 25 streets in the city 3/5 of a Mile long. The two center ones
did not run all the way through the 15 miles. One of them was cut by the
temple as beautiful as the Palace. Belshazzar’s Palace cut the other. There
were 103,000 slaves employed to build artificial mountains.
The dining hall
Had an area of 8,712,000
Square feet. At Four square feet for each person, We could get 2,178,000
people in the dining hall. 450 pillars stood around the walls made of great
stone elephants. These were 25 feet high and 30 feet long. On the back
of each of them there stood a long Slave (?) who held a great chain which
extended across the hall to the other Slave (?) Upon 450 such chains rested
the dining hall’s roof gardens. The gardens were planted with beautiful
The tables were built in
the form of horseshoes and extended across the entire width of the hall.
The warlords sat at the crest of each one of these tables with his favorite
wife at his right the next favorite wife at his left then the next favorite
wife at his right and so on.
Belshazzar and his father
both ruled at the same time
Belshazzar had 348 wives
at the age of 30.He had just married a Negro from the North. She would
marry him if he would build more artificial mountains. It would take from
100,000 to 200,000 slaves to carry leather bags filled with earth to plant
Cedars of Lebanon on the plain. The hanging gardens were suspended over
the edge of the terraces. They lay in rows of 80 feet long and covered
one square mile. There were artificial lakes on the terraces and swans
swam in them. Lovers rowed on the lakes and sang choruses to Belshazzar.
The Banquet Hall
There was a great orchestra
The African peacocks drew
wagons carrying meats and wines. Each table ran through the wall into the
Belshazzar was half sitting
half lying at the crest of the royal table. The Lords with a great crayon
would write with large letters, “Oh King live forever.”
After he gave this description Dr King said, “ Ladies
and Gentleman, that was quite a dining hall." (John Ross)
Chapter Six, we have the
lion’s den incident, which to Daniel was no incident.
Darius set 120 princes over
the whole kingdom. Over these he placed three. Over these three
he considered to place Daniel. Daniel is thus brought out of semi-retirement
to active duty in a high office. He is about ninety years old.
This preferment of Daniel
aroused the ire of the others and then they sought occasion against him
They then sought occasion
against him with his worship of his God, called “the law of his God.”
King Darius was interviewed
by them against Daniel, through a law forbidding any to ask any petition
of She any god or men save the king for 30 days. The penalty for
violating that was to be cast into the lion’s den. The decree was
signed by the king and broken by Daniel before the ink was dry. Daniel’s
admirable custom of praying three times a day is brought to light (6:7,
10). “He kneeled before God…”
They were watching Daniel
and at once rushed to the king with the intelligence. The king was
displeased with himself, and weakly tried to release Daniel (6:12, 14).
Daniel was cast in and the
stone at the mouth was sealed and the king returned and fasted all night
in concern for Daniel. He rushed to the den the next morning and
cried in to Daniel, and lo! Daniel was well and greeted the king.
He was at once taken out and his accusers were cast in, families and all
(6:16, 17-20). Daniel declared that God had shut the lion’s mouths
(6:22). Daniel’s three friends are absent here, as was Daniel at
the fiery furnace incident.
Darius then issued a proclamation
in favor of the God of Daniel and Daniel prospered during Darius’ reign
Part II - 7:1 – 12:13
The second part is mostly
prophecy and much of it is parenthetical or recurrence in vision under
different symbols of what has been discovered from the viewpoint of history.
In Chapter Seven we have
the visions of four beasts, diverse and strange, representing four kings
or kingdoms (7:17).
The four winds strove upon
the great sea, i.e.; the whole earth is concerned in it (7:2). In
the whirling confusing four beasts arose. (trouble) (7:3). This chapter
is dated in the first year of the reign of Belshazzar (7:1).
The first beast was Babylon.
The then captive world empire tottering to its doom. In Daniel 7:4,
we have similar statement of the vision of the tree.
The second was like a bear,
and it devoured much flesh. This corresponds to the Medes and Persians.
They were already hot on the trail of the Babylonians (7:5).
The third was like a leopard
(swift and strong) with four wings and heads. Dominion was given
to it (7:6). This was Alexander the Great, whose kingdom was divided
among his four generals at his death.
The fourth beast was great
and terrible and strong exceedingly; it had great iron teeth (corresponding
to the iron feet in image). It had ten horns (totality in the physical
field) (meaning world dominion). Among them then a little one arose
and removed three. Seven remained. This little horn had eyes
of a man and a mouth speaking great things. This little horn is identified
as the anti-Christ and is dethroned by the coming of the Ancient of Days
whose dominion was everlasting one. This is the overthrow of the
anti-Christ at the end of the tribulation period (7:7, 8, 9, 11,
In Chapter Eight we have
the vision of the ram and the he-goat. This again is a parenthetical
vision. It is dated in the third year of Belshazzar’s reign.
In the vision Daniel as at Shushan in the palace of the province on Elam.
He was by the river Ulah (8:1, 2).
A ram with two high horns
appeared. The last to appear (Cyrus) grew higher than the former.
This ram was Media and Persia. The higher horn was Persia, who rose
last and highest under Cyrus (4:20).
A rough goat appeared from
the west and swept across the face of the earth swiftly. He had a
notable horn between his eyes. He dashed at the twin horned ram and
destroyed it (8:6). Alexander.
The he-goat waxed great and
when he was strong he mastered the earth. The one horn was broken,
and four grew in its place. This goat was Greece, and Alexander was
the first horn, and when he died, his four generals split the earth into
Antipater – received Macedonia
and part of Greece.
Lysimachus – received Thrace,
Bithynia and the northern regions.
Ptolemy – received Egypt,
Cyrene, and Cyprus.
Selucus - received the kingdom
of Syria with upper Asia and the eastern provinces.
Let us carefully orientate
ourselves here. The he-goat is Greece. The horn is Alexander.
The four horns are his four generals. The first is biblically stated
and the rest must follow. Now from one of the four horns grows a little
horn. And it waxed great against the hosts of heaven (8:10).
The daily sacrifice was taken away. The sanctuary was cast down.
One saint asked of another how long such outrage would continue.
The answer was until 2,300 days, and then the sanctuary would be cleansed
(8:14). The indignation referred to the time of the end (8:19 also
The Bible has this horn or
king of wickedness or deceit arising before there was a Roman Empire.
It is not the same as the little horn that arose among the ten, but it
refers to the same, later day tenor, hence this man is a type of the anti-Christ,
and is not the anti-Christ himself. Isaac and Joseph were types of
Christ but were not the Christ.
This man Antiochus Epiphines,
the son of Antiochus the Great, was a brutal murderer of the people of
God. His sister, Cleopatra, having died, he laid claim to Palestine
and “waxed great toward the south.”
While he was conquering Egypt,
the Jews heard a false report concerning his death, and at once disposed
of his representatives. He marched back and ravaged Palestine.
(This is what people are yet looking for.) This battle in Egypt make
some think the anti-Christ will come from Egypt, but it is only a type.
Menelaus betrayed the Jews
to Antiochus and was made High Priest.
He slew 40,000 persons in
three days, and took as many more captives and sold them as slaves.
He entered the Holy of Holies
and there sacrificed a sow upon the altar of burnt offerings; a broth was
made from the same unclean animal and he sprinkled the broth over the sacred
precincts to defile them.
He also carried away a great
many of the sacred vessels therefrom. He was later checked by the
Egypt, and then returned
and vented his anger against the Jews and destroyed Jerusalem. They
waited until the people were at worship and then fell upon them all.
Then the daily sacrifice ceased to be offered. Jupiter Olympus was
introduced into the temple and sacrifices were offered unto him upon the
Proclamations were issued
demanding the cessation of circumcision and the eating of unclean and the
disregard of the Sabbath and Holy Days.
Heathen religions with their
feasts of vile nature were substituted for the feast of the Tabernacles.
Under the Maccabees the Jews
regained partial freedom and the temple was cleansed and worship restored.
Josephus says that just three years and six months after the statue of
Jupiter was set up, the temple was cleansed – literally half of 2,300 days.
This corresponds with the breaking of the covenant with the Jews in the
This man was to die without
human hands (8:25). The anti-Christ is to be destroyed by God’s hand.
Antiochus Ephipanes is not the anti-Christ, yet he is the Bible type.
In Chapter Nine we have the
70 weeks foretold. This is dated in the first year of Darius (9:1).
Daniel learned by the study
of books (Jeremiah) that the 70 years of punishment was nearly closed.
So he set himself to pray for Jerusalem. He took the crimes of Jerusalem
upon himself, and pleaded for them (Jer. 25:11, II Chr. 36:21, Ezra
1:1, and Lev. 26:34).
While Daniel was thus praying
the angel Gabriel touched him about the time of the evening oblations.
Gabriel informed him that he was greatly beloved and then informed him
of the 70 weeks. The 70th week was the week of tribulation.
The church age falls in between
the 69th and 70th. Seven years in one week brings us back from the
cross to Babylonian captivity. The church age was not seen by Daniel
and had Messiah not been cut off the Church Age would not have been at
In Chapter Ten, the third
year of Cyrus, king of Persia.
Daniel was fasting and praying
for three full weeks (10:2, 3). In the twenty-fourth day in the fist
month he was by the river Hiddekel, and a glorious figure appeared to him
(10:4-6). Daniel fell into a deep sleep.
A hand touched him and sat
him on his knees then on the palms of his hands, then he spake to him and
told him he was greatly beloved. Daniel then managed to stand, trembling.
Gabriel informed him that
from the first day he prayed Gabriel started to come to him, but was hindered
by the prince of the kingdom of Persia. (Satan should probably be
understood.) Michael helped him to get past, so he made it (10:12,
He then told Daniel that
he was about to tell him what was to befall his people in the latter times.
Again Daniel became speechless and weak and had to be strengthened.
Gabriel had to return and fight against the prince of Persia and evidently
help the prince of Greece (10:20, 21).
In Chapter eleven we
have the overthrow of Persia by Greece, and we have the dominion of Greece,
dated the first year of Darius (11:1).
Three other kings were to
follow in Persia, Cyrus being the first, he was followed by Cambyses and
then by Darius, and Xerxes. Xerxes was the wealthy great king who
stirred up the spirit of the Grecians (11:2).
The mighty king mentioned
next is not stated to be Persian or Grecian. He could be either as
far as the Bible is concerned. But his description points to Alexander
the Great, whose infant son did not inherit, but whose four leading generals
did (11:3, 4).
The inheritors of the south
— Ptolemy made himself strong and had great dominion. The king of
the North (Selucia) also became strong.
Ptolemy Philadelphus gave
his daughter Berenice in marriage to Antiochus-Theos on condition that
he should divorce his wife Laodice and exclude her children from succession
from the throne. Ptolemy died two years later. Antiochus put
away Berenice and recalled Laodice. She caused him to be put to death,
then through her, her son caused the death of Berenice and through her
son and servants, war resumed.
In his desire to possess
Egypt, Antiochus the Great gave his daughter Cleopatra to Ptolemy Ephiphanes,
but she sided with her husband and the plan failed. This is probably
referred to in Chapter 11:17.
We are again dealing with
a type of the anti-Christ, but the two mix (11:19). To the end, we
have a picture and the account of Antiochus Ephipanes, a type of the anti-Christ.
This period of battles between north and south (Egypt and Syria) in which
the type played a most prominent part is often confused with the present,
or looked for in the future.
Xerxes, whose wealth was
great, marched five million men against Greece. One hundred years
later Alexander used this as an excuse to march against Persia.
Antiochus Ephipanes referred
to as being broken in hands; he returned in defeat and died in poverty
by a loathsome disease. “He died without hands.” Jesus, Paul
and John did not look for the anti-Christ to come in war, but in peace.
The closing of the Book of
Daniel starts off with the
tribulation period yet the people of God were to be delivered. The
angel Michael was to stand for them (12:1).
We then have the first and
second resurrections stated together, not so much together in time as side
by side in revelation (12:2). Jesus deals with them together (John
5:28, 29). John deals with them together, but places them a thousand
years apart (Rev. 20:5, 6). Place the three cases together and we
have the truth. There are two but there is a period of a thousand
years between (Dan 12:2; John 5:28, 29; Rev. 20:5, 6).
The vision was to be sealed
to the time of the end (Dan. 12:4). Two spoke to each other and asked
how long it would be till the time of these wonders! During the tribulation
the abomination that maketh desolate would be set up. After this
it would be 1290 days. Then a blessing was pronounced on those who
came 1335th day. Judgment for 45 days. Enough remained to be
Daniel was to go his way
(die) and rest and then stand in his lot in his day.
(Matt. 24:1-41; I Cor. 15:1-39;
I Thess. 4:1-18, and II Thess 2:1-17)
Clarke, A., Foreign Theological
Gaeblline, A. C., The Prophet
Keil. C. F., Daniel.
Kelly, W., Lectures on the
Book of Daniel.
Seiss, J. A.,Voices from
Tregellen, S. P., Remarks
on the Prophetic Visions in Daniel.
West. N., Daniel’s great
THE TWELVE MINOR PROPHETS
The 12 Minor Prophets
were put together in one book by the men of the Great Synagogue in the
Hebrew Canon. Ezra appointed this Great Synagogue, - Josephus, and
Matthew Henry. They were lesser or Minor prophets because they didn't
write as much as the others. They, however, preached much and many
excellent prophets wrote little or nothing, like Elisha.
Nine are thought to
have prophesied before the Babylonian captivity and three after it.
It is hard to set a date for some of them. The three to prophesy
after the Babylonian captivity are Haggai, Zechariah, and Malachi.
Five are thought to have been before Isaiah, or, are contemporary with
his earlier years. Seven are thought to be contemporary with his
later years. The present order in which we have them is that of the
ancient Hebrews, who were men of Ezra’s time. Their dates differ
greatly and their order also differs. In the German schools the date
of Obediah differs by 600 years.
The 12 began the prophetic
writings as such. They were the first to write and they closed the prophetic
writings as such. In other words they were the last to write. The
earliest of the 12 wrote next in order of time to the Psalms of David:
i.e. the writings of David, the Psalms of Asaph, and sons of Korah who
was Levites and wrote 10 Psalms. The messianic revelations of the
12 antedate the revelations of the Major Prophets. Isaiah was not
the first prophet, as he had some of the 12 to build on. Joel tells
us of the outpouring of the Spirit on all flesh, and Jonah tells us in
symbol of the three days of Jesus in the heart of the earth. (His stay
3 days in the belly of the fish.) Jonah was a type of Jesus in becoming
the first missionary to journey to a foreign country. Jonah did what
Peter would hardly do.
Furthermore, the earliest
of the 12th followed closely after Elijah and Elisha. Elisha on his
deathbed told Joash of the three victories over the Syrians in order to
recover the cities of Israel. The cities were taken from his father
Jehoahaz. In the very next reign of Jeroboam II, there arose the
first of a brilliant group of Prophets called Minor Prophets.
The beginning of the
Minor Prophets was the darkest period in Israel's history. Jeroboam
the second, the son of Joash was second to last to rule Israel by divine
appointment. God promised Jehu for partial obedience that is children
would sit the throne to the fourth generation. Jehu was back in Ahab's
day and he ran over Jezebel in Jezreel. This promise expired with
Jeroboam the second’s son, Zechariah who reigned six months. After
that the Kings made their way to the throne by anarchy and murder.
Shallum slew Zacharias, Menahem slew Shallum, and Pekah slew the son of
Menahem. Hoshea slew Pekah. The whole kingdom of Israel was
a military despotism. Those in military command came to the throne,
Baasha, Zimri, Omri, Jehu. Menahem, and Pekah all held military offices
before they became kings. And each of those usurpers made foreign
alliances to strengthen themselves on the throne and then brought in the
foreign idolatry and evils. Such was Israel when the Minor Prophets
The Book of Hosea 785B.C.
Hosea was the earliest
prophet who interpreted God in terms of love. Hosea was the son Beeri
and was said by the ancients to the been from Bethshemesh of the tribe
of Issachar. He prophesied in the Northern Kingdom, Israel, during
the time of Jeroboam the second, at the latter end of his reign and certain
following kings. They were Uzziah, Hezekiah, Jotham, Jeroboam, He
prophesied from 40 to 50 years maybe as many as 65 years. The book
represents a series of sermons delivered over a long period time.
Chapter 7 followed Chapter 5 by about 20 years.
Jeroboam I, the son of Nebat
brought in calf worship. When he took the Northern 10 tribes
in his rebellion, he left Rehoboam with the two southern tribes.
Jerusalem was in the hands of Rehoboam. Jeroboam’s people had to
go back to Jerusalem to worship and Jeroboam thought they would be wooed
back and be reunified. He set up altars in Dan in Beersheba to the
golden calf. Moses had said there was just one place to worship and
that worship passed to Baal worship in the Northern Kingdom. Baal
was the leading idol who was worshiped in the Northern Kingdom. In
the days of Jeroboam II, Israel was exceedingly corrupt in her princes,
priest, and people. Immorality was a phase of Baal worship and it
crept into Israel.
Hosea is said to have been
the first of the writing prophets - Matthew Henry. His book is more
like a collection of writings or proverbs than a series of addresses.
He was contemporary with Isaiah to the opening years of Isaiah ministry.
He was also contemporary with Joel, Micah, Amos-Irwin, Ellicott, and Pusey.
Hosea was to teach
as much by his own personal history, like Isaiah, as by either his preaching
or his writing. This method was not unusual to God in those days.
The Ethical Theory of atonement is based on Hosea’s life. That theory
says God’s son died to show his love for us. That theory is not so.
Ezekiel did the same thing in another field. The wrongs Hosea was
suffering at the hands of his unfaithful wife whom he passionately loved,
were typical of the wrongs suffered by God from Israel whom he passionately
loved. Hosea was asked to marry a disreputable woman by the
name of Gomer, the daughter of Diblaim. Her connection with Diblaim seemed
to add to her shady character.
Their first child,
a son, was called Jezreel-referring to the fact that God would revenge
the blood shed by Jehu in cleaning up the house of Ahab. Jehu did
this, then he went into calf worship (2 Kings 9:21, 37; 10:11). God
often used such characters as Jehu to clean up another like him.
But he held the first person responsible for his heart intentions.
An example is a cat does well by killing mice, but with an evil desire.
The same principle applies here.
The second child, a girl
was called Lo-ruhamah meaning not having obtained mercy or not pitied,
or no mercy-Irwin. Israel was to receive no mercy at the hands of
The third child, a
son was called Lo-ammi. His name means not my people. Hosea's
wife left him and he pleaded with her and asked her children to plead with
her to amend her ways. Her type was a type of Israel's attitude to
God. Yet in all such denunciations, mercy and ultimate good were
always promised to Israel.
Again God told Hosea
to go get his wife who was beloved by another man, that is she lived with
another man (3:1).
Gomer’s position was that
of a slave concubine in a poor and destitute condition. He bought
her back for 15 pieces of silver and one and half homers of barley, the
price of a slave (3:2). She was to abide with him many days.
So Israel was to abide many days without a King, and no form of government.
Israel would then return to God and the house of David. This last
has yet to be fulfilled.
An exact arrangement of
the chronological order of Hosea’s prophecy is impossible. It may
with some possibility be divided as follows.
Which was written during the closing years of the reign of Jeroboam II
as shown by reference to the House of Jehu (1:4). The unfaithfulness
of Hosea's wife as a figure of the unfaithfulness of Israel is the burden
of the first three chapters.
Chapter 4 describes
the moral degradation and the idolatry of people and priest. There
was no truth, nor mercy, nor knowledge of God in the land (4:1).
The gamut of the catalog of sins had practically reached its limit 4:2.
This is a rather strong chapter.
Chapter 5 and Chapter
6: Here we have Tiglath-Pileser's invasion referred to. Their repentance
is shallow as is proved by the many in Gilgal that were stained with blood
Chapter 7 and Chapter
8: The drunkenness of the Princes and the foolish alliances with both Egypt
and Syria are referred to. Drinking and cussing occurs wherever salvation
is known. Heathen nations don’t go in for this so much. Cussing
is the most loathsome habit of all; there is no excuse at all for it.
If anything the in sphere God's creation has a right to cuss it is the
skunk. We also have the idolatrous corruption of Ephriam, and his
unfaithfulness to Jehovah set forth. Possibly this section occurred
during Hoshea’s reign (8:3).
We have the divine chastisements and pleadings mentioned. The Assyrian
captivity is mentioned in 9:3. We also have some outstanding proverbs
in this section (10:13).
Chapter 12-14. We
have teachings from the patriarchal period referred to and then the last
words of rebuke and the final statements of ultimate hope.
The book could be
divided into two parts:
Part 1-3 Which
is dealing with the symbol of the home of Hosea in relation to Israel and
Part two could be
Chapter 4-14; which describes Israel's moral decadence. People and
priest alike are utterly false (4-8). Punishment is threatened (9-11).
But if Israel will repent and renounce her sins and turn in repentance
to Jehovah, he will receive forgiveness and God again will bless them (12-14).
“Hosea was a man of emotions rather than of logic: a poet rather than a
The Book of Joel
Little is known of
Joel except what he says of himself. ”Joel, The son of Pethuel.” He apparently
prophesied in Jerusalem as he speaks of as though the priests were then
and there present. Pusey.
Some hold that the
book was written as early as 870 or 830 B.C. (correct). Others think it
was written as late as 444 B.C., that is, after the exile (untrue) -Irwin
In a time of famine
and drought, wave after wave of desolation and destruction had swept over
the land (1:4). The harvest had perished, fruit trees withered, their
seeds had rotted in the clods, and the cattle were perplexed because there
was no pasture (1:10-12, 17-20). In that dark hour the promise of
God flashes out (2:25, 28).
This period of Jewish
history saw a great revival after the idolatrous movement of Athaliah.
, The queen mother, and daughter of Ahab and Jezebel had been repressed.
The protectorate of the Kingdom during the minority of Joash whom the priest
had hid was in the hand of the high priest, Jehoiada. He had
generated much enthusiasm in the temple and its service. Joel could
have lived through that (1:13). He prophesied during the time of
Amos was acquainted
with the little Book of Joel. Compare Amos 1:2; 3:1 and Joel 3:16.
The book may be divided
into two parts or four parts.
in which we have the lamentation over the devastating plagues and the exhortation
of the prophet o the people to repent it, and returned again to Jehovah.
Chapters 2:18-3:21 which
contain the answer to the prayer and the promise of blessing in the future
and the outpouring of the Spirit on the return of the captives to Jerusalem
and to Zion is revealed.
in which we have the desolation made by a host of insects.
in which we have promises of mercy upon repentance.
in which we have further promises of a greater sweep of mercy; The great
promise of the outpouring of the Spirit upon all flesh, and Israel in Israel’s
the final era. Peter uses this section of Joel to explain Pentecost
to the Jews. This prophecy was not completely fulfilled at Pentecost.
Pentecost was the same thing. But Israel’s real fulfillment lies
in the future. This alone makes Joel great (2:28-32, Acts 2:16f).
Chapter 2:3-3:21 the
conclusion. These are verses in regard to the final time. The
tribulation is pictured in 3:14.
The Book of Amos 780-755
This Amos was not
the father of Isaiah, Isa. 1:1. He was a native of Tekoa. Tekoa is an elevated
area 4 or 5 miles south of Bethlehem in Judea. Amos was by occupation
a herdsman and a dresser of sycamore trees, which are wild fig trees.
He was not the son of a prophet or of a priest. But God called him to be
an active prophet (1:1; 7:7; 14,15). Like Hosea, he also prophesied
in Israel mostly at Bethel, to the godless and the idolaters. King
Jeroboam II set up these idolatries. He prophesied somewhere between
804 B.C. and 760 B.C. He probably lived from about 780 B.C. on.
His period of prophecy was probably short. He introduces and explains
himself briefly in one verse (1:1). This earthquake is mentioned
by several of the prophets but its actual date is unknown. Jerusalem
is built on a fault that runs north and south through that area.
Amos ran into strong
opposition in delivering his message, but he delivered it. Mercy
shines through the clouds of judgment as the book closes with promises
of divine pardon and restoration (9:14-15).
The book can be divided
into two main sections; Chapter 1-6: and Chapter 7-9.
Chapters 1-6 contain
prophetic threatening against the nations including Israel (1:2-2:5).
There are brief denunciations' against Damascus, Philistia, Tyre, Edom,
Ammon, Moab, and Judah. One can fancy he hears “Amens,” and sees
smiles of approval from the “Amen corner” at that point, from Israel.
In 2:6-3, We have
the sudden indictments against Israel. The “Amens” and smiles are
gone. The prevailing idolatry is smitten. The oppression of the poor
and lives of the nobles are condemned.
Chapters 3-6 There
are three discourses. Each begins with the words “Hear ye.”
“Hear ye this word that the Lord hath spoken against you . . .” (3:1).
“Hear this word, you kine of Bashan . . .” (4:1). “Hear ye this word
which I take up against you, even a lamentation, O house of Israel” (5:1).
Here we have five prophetic visions that proclaim God's judgment upon Israel.
We have the interpretation by the priest, Amaziah and the judgments that
God would bring upon him.
The five visions are:
The plagues of grasshoppers
or locust (7:1).
The great fire, which could
be a drought (7:4).
The plumb line (7:7-9).
The basket of summer fruit
The terrible doom pronounced
by the Lord as he stood by, or on the desecrated altar (9:1-4).
At the close of the
plumb line prophecy (7:7-9), the priest Amaziah broke in. Jeroboam
II was at the height of his power. Israel was at the height of grandeur.
At such a time Amos said, "And high places of Isaac shall be desolate,
and the sanctuaries of Israel shall be laid waste; and I will rise against
the house of Jeroboam with the sword” (7:9).
Amaziah first informed
the king that Amos had conspired against the king. The land was being
weakened thereby. Jeroboam II was to die by the sword and Israel
was to be led away captives out of their own land. Amaziah
then said to Amos: “Then Amaziah, the priest of Bethel sent to Jeroboam
king of Israel, saying, Amos hath conspired against thee in the midst of
the house of Israel: The land is not able to bear all his words.
For thus Amos saith, Jeroboam shall die by the sword, and Israel shall
surely be led away captive out of their own land. Also Amaziah said
unto Amos, O thou seer, go, flee thee away unto the land of Judah, there
eat bread and prophesy there: But prophesy not again anymore at Bethel:
For it is the King's Chapel, and is the King's court.” (7:10-13).
Amos fearlessly replied
to Amaziah and wound up by saying, "Therefore thus saith the lord; thy
wife shall be an harlot in the city, and thy sons and thy daughters shall
fall by the sword, and thy land shall be divided by line; and thou shall
die in a polluted land: and Israel shall surely go into captivity forth
of his land” (7:17).
The victorious enemies
would divide their land among the foreigners who were shipped into the
land. This is the start of the Samaritans. God started the
nation of Israel before any of the great empires, so that the Jew could
be scattered among them with the knowledge of God. The Jews failed
to do so. So God scattered them (through their captivities) to accomplish
the same purpose.
captivity came soon after this. We have no Biblical statement as
to what happened to Amaziah. Probably he went into captivity.
In spite of all, mercy
shows through the dark clouds and the book closes with a promise of divine
restoration. The prophecies are found in Amos 9:14,15, Isa. 61:4; 60:21.
The fulfillment of these prophesies is seen in 2 Chron. 36:22.
The Book of Obediah
Nothing is known the
of author of the shortest of prophetic books except his name. He
is not to the identified with Ahab's famous officer 1 Kings 18:3.
He is not to be identified with any of the 12 or so of the Obediah’s in
the Bible. Obadiah is a common name in the Bible.
Dating the book is
difficult. The 11th verse probably determines the date. If
so, we have to place its date between 588 and 563 B.C. If such were
correct it would have been written shortly after the Babylonian captivity
and before the destruction of Edom. The Edomites territory is basically
that of the Kingdom of Jordan today.
The message is one
of judgment against the descendants of Esau or the Edomites. Their
attitude toward the Israelites was bad. There are parallel denunciations
in Isa. 21:11-12; Ezek. 25:12, 14; Jer. 49:7, Lam. 4:21-22.
The book is almost
entirely composed of judgments against Esau and his descendants in Mount
Seer for their attitude to Jacob or the Jews in their hour of trouble.
The beginning of that rivalry and its continuance in the persons of the
descendants of Esau and Jacob are discussed. Jacob and Esau could
weep on each other's neck in forgiveness and they did, but their descendants
Esau's home was among
the rocks. He thought his cities were impregnable and secure and
strong. He feared no foe because he could hardly be taken.
He, the Arabs, refused to help his brother, the Jews in the their time
of need. In fact he seemed to have helped the Babylonians and then
plundered Jerusalem after Babylon had finished (1:10-13). The doom
of Edom is an illustration of the eternal principle enunciated by our Lord
in Luke 6:38: "Give and it shall be given unto you; good measure, pressed
down, and shaken together, and running over, shall men give into your bosom.
For with the same measure that you mete withal shall be it measured unto
you.” Obed. 1: 5 states the same principle, “If thieves came to thee,
if robbers by night, would they not have stolen till they had enough? If
the grape gathers came to thee, would they not leave some grapes?”
Esau’s pride was to be humbled. They were to be made small and despised
among the Nation's (1:2-4, Isa. 63:1-3).
Their wealth was to
be plundered. They had plundered and now they were to be plundered.
They were deceiving themselves by trusting robbers (1:5-7).
Their wise man would
be destroyed. Their understanding would pass away and their mighty
men would be dismayed (1:8-9).
Their spiteful conduct
toward God's children would be avenged (1:10-16).
Then follows the gracious
promises to Israel. They shall be destroyed and reformed and shall
be victorious over the Edomites. They shall become the masters of
their own land and of their neighbors (1:17-20).
Future Messianic reign
The Kingdom of the
Redeemer would be set up in Mount Zion. The dominion would be the
Lord's. It is really a Messianic close, but the Messiah is not mentioned
by name (1:21).
Verse 20, this army
of Israelite exiles will march on the Canaanites as far as Zerathah, in
Lebanon just straight west of Mount Harmon on the coast between Tyre and
We read of this same
Jonah in 2 Kings 14:25, Where He prophesied that the borders of Israel
would be restored under Jeroboam II. This prophecy was fulfilled,
but it was not put into writing separately there Jonah is said to be of
Gath-hepher in Galilee. He belonged to the tribe of Zebulon in a
remote corner of the land of Israel (1:1). He is called the son of
Amittai. Matthew Henry dates him at 840 BC and others date him at
860 B.C. The dates below 840 B.C. are out.
The book has little
prophecy in it, just the prediction that Nineveh would be overthrown at
the end of 40 days. The rest of the book is history leading up to
that statement or it is history following that statement. The most
various opinions have prevailed as to the nature of this book. It
is declared to be a literal history, pure fiction, a parable, an allegory,
a poetic myth, and a dream.
Jesus referred to
it as factual history and Jonah as an actual historical figure. He
used the story as a symbol of his own death and resurrection Matt. 12:39-40.
Jesus also held up the Ninevites as a model case of Biblical repentance
and thus rebuked the narrowness of the Jews with regard to the matter of
The book is a great
plea for foreign missions. Jonah was a great foreign missionary.
He was the first Hebrew foreign missionary (Matt. 12:39-41; Luke 11:32).
It also delivers the deathblow to Jewish narrowness and to the exclusiveness
of the Mosaic system to the Hebrews. Here God heard prayers out of
that system and out of those people. The Jews believed that you could
worship God only on Jewish soil. Nahum took Jewish earth so he could
worship God in Syria on the Jewish earth of his own country.
There are some bothersome
facts in regard to the history of the book.
Joppa was the port
of Jerusalem about 30 miles away. The vessel was probably a Phoenician
vessel plying between Egypt and Spain. It stopped at Joppa between
Egypt and Spain. Tarsus or Tarshish was probably in Spain.
Some say it was in Italy. There was a Phoenician seaport colony on
the Atlantic near Gibraltar-Ellicott. It was on the river Guadalouwar
in the southwest of Spain (Gen. 10:4, 1 Chron.1: 7).
Nineveh has its origin
in Gen. 10:11. Probably city upon city had been built on top of each
other and then the great Nineveh on top of all of it. There were
60 miles around the walls, with fields and flocks and herds within the
walls. Babylon was built this way also.
The great fish could
have been a white shark or whale or a special fish for that occasion.
The Book of Jonah calls it an appointed or prepared fish. Jesus language
in the Greek means a sea monster.
The Book of Jonah
may be divided into four sections.
Section one shows Jonah's
disobedience from God and his punishment (1:1-17). When God spoke
Jonah rose and fled to the far west. Nineveh had an army to go against
Egypt. They marched to Israel. Jonah prayed that God would stop and
destroy Nineveh. God said, “No.”. “You go preach to them.”
He went down to Joppa,
paid the fare to Tarsus; He went down to the ship. Down to the hole
and lay down, being dead tired, he soon fell asleep. A great tempest
rose and the mariners cast lots and the lot fell on Jonah. He was
cast overboard and swallowed up by a sea monster or prepared fish.
Interesting how far he is willing to go before he began to pray.
Jonah fled from the
presence of God and ran right into trouble a correlation with Ps.139:7-10.
He described his
location in the belly of the fish as hell, Sheol. Which means a place
of the dead in Hebrew (2:2). Section two of the book is Jonah’s prayer
deliverance (2:1-10). Then he prayed. It is really a song of
thanksgiving. In this respect it is somewhat like Hannah’s song in
1 Sam. 1-10.
The Lord then spoke
to the great fish. Through nature he made the fish sick and Jonah
was vomited on dry land (2:10). He probably landed at Joppa or returned
to Joppa where started from in the first place.
Section three of the
book: Jonah fulfills his commission (3:1-10)).
The command of God
came the second time to Jonah. We don't know where Jonah was at this
time. He at once went. He was whole hearted. He did what
he did with his whole might. He went the limit. The expression
" Now Nineveh was an exceedingly great city,” might indicate that the book
was written after the city was destroyed. The Hebrew however does
not teach that fact. Tenses are tricky in Hebrew.
Nineveh was a city of three
days' journey. This could be the circumference or the diameter.
The circumference of the wall was the way most ancient cities were measured.
Probably this is what is referred to here.
into the city a day’s journey: That is he walked a day through it and then
preached in a central spot. His sermon was, "Yet 40 days and Nineveh
shall be overthrown." There was no hope of forgiveness offered by
Jonah that we have record of. They knew enough about God to try it,
that is repentance, anyhow. They believed in Jonah’s message and
that his God was the true God. They proclaimed a fast. That
put on sackcloth. They sat in ashes from the least to the greatest.
It even included the flocks and herds who were not fed or watered.
They hoped that God would repent. God saw and heard and repented,
that is, He changed his attitude and did it not.
Section four: Jonah's
discontent and correction (4:1-10). When God spares them, Jonah was
displeased. He wanted them removed so Israel would be safe and said
so to God. This was the excuse he had made to God in his own country (4:1-4).
This was his excuse for not wanting to go in the first place. God
then showed Jonah by a gourd his mercy. He spared them and they repented.
Micah 750 B.C.
Micah was born in Moresheth-Gath,
a village in the west of Judah on the maritime plain near Eleutheroplis.
Hence he is called, Micah, the Morasthite. He probably was contemporary
with Isaiah with whom he appears to have been very familiar Isa 2:2,3;Mic.
4:1,2. Ellicott dates him at 750 B.C.
It is stated that
he preached during the days of Jotham, Ahaz, and Hezekiah kings of Judah.
He also foresaw the Assyrian invasion but his major burden was for the
people of Judah. He was a Judean. He is, however, also talking
about Samaria and Jerusalem i.e. both kingdoms. He foresaw and lamented
the captivity of the 10 tribes by the Assyrian hoard.
Micah is a good example
of the twofold office of the prophet. He was a messenger on behalf
of God, speaking God's message to his own time. Secondly he was a messenger
of the future- foretelling-, the doom of nations and the final victory
of righteousness and peace.
Micah was also a preacher
of righteousness and a heralder of the Messiah. No finer definition
of religion can be found than is found in the book of Micah: "He hath shewed
you thee, O man, what is good; and what doth the Lord require of thee,
but to do justly, and to love mercy, and to walk humbly with thy God" (6:9)?
He also foretold the
coming of Christ and his kingdom. The world ruler would arise from
Bethlehem (5:2f; 4:3f; Judg. 13:5; Matt. 2:6; John 7:42).
The theme or scope
of the whole book is to convince sinners of their sins by setting their
sins in order before them. He charges both Israel and Judah with
idolatry, covetousness, oppression, and contempt of the word of God.
He charges their rulers, religious and political rulers, with the abuse
of their powers, also showing them that the judgments of God were ready
to bear in upon them for their sins.
In Chapter 1 and Chapter
2 Micah warns of the covetousness of the rich and the eviction of the poor
from their homes and their lands (2: 2-9). They also dealt more barbarously
with women and children and with other harmless and defenseless people
(2:8-9). The people were oppressed and silenced God's real prophets.
They delighted in false prophets 2:6-7,11).
There are two ways
to silence a prophet; cut off his head, or stuff his mouth with gold.
Micah then gives gracious
promises of comfort for the good people among them, in the person of the
In Chapter 3 Jehovah
takes away the bread and water and men of war, judges, Prophets, elders,
diviners, and captains. That is He took away the skillful people
in all walks of life. Babes and children would be their leaders;
that is, inferior people would be their leaders. Each would oppress
the other. That which they had but did not value they would lose.
Chapter 3 however is interesting in that it was instrumental in saving
Jeremiah's life a decade later. Micah had said that Zion would be
"plowed as a field” (3:12). Then Jeremiah said about the same thing
(Jer. 25:18-19; 26:16-20). The princes who wished to spare Jeremiah
used Micah, and Hezekiah’s leniency to him, as a precedent to spare Jeremiah.
Micah had been fully spared. Why not spare Jeremiah? Brave
Micah paves the way for brave Jeremiah and made possible his message and
saved his life.
In Chapter 4 we have the
finest picture of the personal Christ on earth to be found anywhere in
the Bible. They are to beat their spears into plowshares and the
Lord is to reign from Mount Zion forever. Many make it the church
age, but it will not accommodate itself to the church age, that is, it
will not fit there. It is what it says or it is nothing.
Chapter 5 also belongs
to Chapter 4 and deals with the coming of the Messiah, the king.
The various dispersions of the Jews are referred to as well as their regathering.
Those two chapters are two remarkable chapters on the Messiah and his Kingdom,
his reign and the destruction of his enemies.
In Chapter 6 and Chapter
7 we have the following.
The prophet sets the sins
of Israel as a nation before them for their conviction and their humiliation
He shows them the
wrong course they had taken and their light proposals when rebuked.
They substituted forms
for heart change (6:6-8).
Their injustice and
idolatry would bring ruin upon them (6:9-15).
The prophet laments
the decay of religion and the deluge of impiety and the immorality, which
overworked the nation (7:1-6).
The prophet then prescribes
comfort and gives counsel. The trouble would continue long and they
were to make the best of it (7:11-13). Jeremiah also said this.
During that time they
were to encourage themselves with the promises of God, in answer to the
prayers of the prophets (7:14-15).
Their enemies, who
now would triumph, would fall (7:16-17). The Jews would, therefore,
triumph over all by the mercy of God, because of his covenant. With
that comfort the book is closed.
Nahum 765-713 860-840
This book also deals
with Nineveh. Nahum is called the Elkoshite. He is contemporary with
Habakkuk, Jeremiah and Zephaniah. His name means comforter. That
is about all we know of him. We don't know where Elkosh was.
The name of Nahum could have been a nom de plume, a pen name. Much
of this occurs in the Bible (Isa. 8: 3:3-4; Hos. 1:3, 7).
The purpose of writing is
made in the second verse of the book (1:2).
had been threatened, and she was not destroyed, because she repented. Now
150,years later she had relapsed into sin. She is declared to be a city
of blood; full of lies, of robbery and of vice and of superstition (3:1-4).
Her fall is to be complete (2:6, 9, 13; 3:3:7, 18). The nations,
which Nineveh had oppressed, shall rejoice in their deliverance from Nineveh’s
Jonah is dated at
about 840 or 860 B.C. Nahum is dated about or between 665-635, although
the King James Version dates it 713 B.C. Yet 663-635 scenes to be
more correct. Thebes was sacked in 663 B.C. If No, or No-Amon
refers to Thebes, which is believed by most, then the book would have been
produced between 663-635 B.C. (Elliott, Irwin), as the fall of No-Amon
is spoken of as a past event.
Nahum then treats
of the downfall of the Assyrian Empire whose capital was Nineveh.
In Chapter one the Prophets attention is mostly fixed on the last Assyrian
invasion of Judah namely that which resulted in the destruction of the
host of Sennacherib recorded in 2 Kings 19. Probably this catastrophe
had already taken place (Ellicott). Sennacherib’s disaster was the
first warning act in a tragedy far greater and yet to come (Isa., Chaps.
2 and 3).
Nahum prophesies of
the completion of this fuller tragedy. The bloody city is to fall
before the besiegers with the help of a flood. A flooded river carried
out a corner of the walls (2:6). Its population is to be led away
captive. Her site is to be to remain empty and void and waste. It
is this way to this day. It is possible that the Medes and Babylonians
humbled Nineveh still more, that is after the destruction of Sennacherib's
forces in Judea in 625 B.C. If so then Nahum wrote before 625 B.C.
Nineveh was thus warned twice before the final overthrow in 606 B.C.
Zephaniah quotes Nahum, therefore Nahum is before 630 B.C.
The Syrians had been the
leading power in upper Asia for more than 500 years. The original
abode of this great people appears to have been the mouth of the Tigris
and Euphrates rivers.
The Assyrian hordes
had migrated northward as early as 1600 B.C., while the Hebrews were in
Egypt. The colonists were probably subjected to Babylonian rule at
first. But they had their own monarchs as early as 1550 BC.
These monarchs rose to equal rank with that of the Babylonians until Tiglath-Nam,
1270 B.C., styled himself the conqueror of Babylonia.
Babylonia was not
effectively weakened until the time of Sargon 721 B.C. Assyria was
at the zenith of its power during Sennacherib's time 704 B.C. For
some time it was a toss up between Assyria and Babylon as to who was most
powerful. Sennacherib was even more famous as a patron of the arts.
He had a great library and was a builder and was a warrior. Esarhaddon’s
reign and Ashurbanipal’s reign are described as about as great as Sennacherib
The crash came for
Assyria when the Medes under Cyaxares arose in arms and invaded Assyria.
Some allies including a dependent of the Assyrians called Nabopolassar
of Babylon, the father of Nebuchadnezzer assisted the Medes. This
siege lasted three years. Nature came to the assistance of the besiegers.
Heavy rains fell for days and the river carried away a great part of the
fortifications. They were in perfect safety until that happened and
were celebrating within the walls. The enemy then entered unopposed
and carried away much booty to both Babylon and Ecbatana, which was the
headquarters of the Medes. Its fall was quite like the later fall
of Babylon. Nineveh was as impregnable as was Babylon. Both
The usual procedure was
to repeople a captured city with people from other places. The conquerors
of Nineveh however destroyed it with fire. Possibly the fires were
started by the defeated King and people. In the excavation
of 3 or 4 Hills, which mark the corner of Nineveh, are found fire-scarred
ruins. The places are Kouyinjuk, Khorsabad, and Nimroud,
Nineveh has remained
just as they had said, “A desolation and empty void and waste.” Alexander
once marched past it, not knowing that a world empire like that which he
gave his life to found lay buried under his feet (Pusey). Lucien
wrote, “Nineveh has perished and there is no trace left where it was“.
Nahum tells it all.
The book may be divided
into the following sections
Jehovah's very character
appears to be a guarantee that he will right the oppressed and faithful
and that he will destroy their enemies (1:2-8).
The Northern expedition
of Sennacherib is portrayed chiefly with reference to the relief that his
overthrow afforded Israel. His own miserable end is referred to (1:9-15).
The siege of Nineveh
and its issued. The destruction of the oppressors (2:1-13).
A more extended statement
about the cause of this great catastrophe and the utter ruin thereby is
brought out (3:1-19).
Habakkuk 607 B.C.
The book gives nothing
of about the personality of the author, except that he is called a prophet
and appears to have some part in the temple service (1:1; 3:1). He
prophesied before the battle of Carchemish 609 B.C. Nebuchadnezzar
was young and it went up against Pharaoh Necho. He preached during
the reign of Jehoiakim and would have been contemporary with Jeremiah.
The occasion of the
writing. Habakkuk is summoned to announce Jehovah's intention of
punishing the iniquities, which prevailed among his fellow men. The
instrument to be used in the punishment is the army of the Babylonians.
This invasion was to be a fearful catastrophe and was to come in their
The battle of Carchemish,
609 B.C., brought the chosen nation under the heel of the king of Babylon,
that is, Nebuchadnezzar. The Jewish sympathies had been on the side
of the Egyptians and the Jewish king Jehoiakim was the nominee of Egypt.
It was only natural that Nebuchadnezzar's victory should have been followed
by an invasion of Judah.
Jehoiakim came to
terms with the conqueror. He remained on the throne as a tributary
to Babylon. Three years later he renounced this alliance and the
Babylonians further ravaged and subdued Judah and Jerusalem. Jehoiakim’s
son, Jehoiachin followed the same unwise policy. Nebuchadnezzar,
himself, came to besieged Jerusalem. Jehoiachin was disposed and
Jerusalem was sacked. Habakkuk statements came true (1:5).
Pusey places the composition
of the book from 698-643 B.C. before Babylon regained her standing after
having been defeated by Nineveh. This, the Jews thought was incredible
at the time. "Lo, I raise up the Chaldeans," which would infer that it
was before the battle of Carchemish (1:6). Others place the composition
between 625 and 600 B.C. This later date has a tendency to minimize
the supernatural elements of forth telling and furthermore it is apparently
incorrect. Even if it were just before Carchemish, the false prophets,
etc. who declared, Jeremiah's declarations would not come to pass, were
on the side of probability as no one expected the Egyptians to lose the
battle of Carchemish (Jer. 27:9). So they had declared Habakkuk’s’s
declarations to be impossible, Hence the date is it least before Carchemish.
Probably in that generation at least (1:5).
The book falls into
four main divisions:
Chapter 1:1-11: the
prophet deplores the anarchy, oppression and social disorder that prevailed
among his fellow men (1:1-4). Jehovah declares that the Chaldeans
are commissioned to execute a chastisement of fearful severity (1:5).
The appearance, character and operation of these invaders are described
(1:6-11). Habakkuk expostulates with God. The sins of his fellows
are surpassed by the Chaldeans wickedness. Are the Jewish people
to be exterminated? God answers him. Final triumph is not to the
godless Chaldeans, but to him who waits on God in faith.
The sins of the Chaldeans
are denounced which are drunkenness, greed, cruelty, insatiable ambition
and degrading idolatry. Justice demanded their punishment.
God is still on the throne. Let all the earth keep silent before
Chapter 3:1-15 is
a poem of great beauty. Habakkuk describes the divine interposition.
God shall reveal himself as he did in the time of the Exodus and of the
Judges. The nation shall tremble as they see mountains, rivers, seas,
sun, and moon all acknowledge his wonderful presence.
The prophet then reverts
to his own earlier revelation and describes his own emotions at the prospect
of the impending invasion. In the midst of all he is going to cling
confidently and cheerfully to God the all-powerful one (3:16-19).
For the Christian,
the permanent value of this book lies in its underlying tone of personal
faith. It is this that has made certain text in the book so
familiar to us (3:17-18). Chapter 2:4 is made use of by Paul in combating
Judaism (Gal. 3:11). Hebrews 10:38 also refers to it.
Chapters 3:17 and 18 are
memorial and everlasting, take that attitude and nothing can move one.
“Although the fig tree shall not blossom, neither shall fruit be in the
vines; the labor of the olive shall fail, and the fields shall yield no
meat; the flock shall be cut off from the fold, and there shall be no herd
in the stalls. Yet I will rejoice in the Lord, I will joy in the God of
my salvation. The Lord God is my strength, and he will make my feet
like hinds' feet, and he will make me to walk on mine high places” (3:17-19).
Zephaniah 641-610 B.C.
The author, we know
nothing of him other than what he tells of himself. But he tells
us quite a lot, as he appears to trace his ancestry to king Hezekiah.
"The word of the lord which came unto Zephaniah, the son of Cushi, the
son of the Amariah, the son of Hizkiah, in the days of Josiah, the son
of Amon, king of Judah” (1:1).
The occasion of writing:
Zephaniah wrote during the reign of Josiah, who reigned between 641-610
His period may be
divided into three sections.
1. That proceeding the demolishing
of idolatry 641-630.
2. The reformation which
culminated in a restoration of the temple in 624-623 B.C. There is
a renewal of the covenant and the celebration of the Passover.
3. Following this reformation
623-610. It is hard tell to which section the book of Zephaniah belongs.
Some date him 625-620: some date him 641-630 when idolatry prevailed (1:4-6).
Oppression and corruption prevailed (3:1-7). When Josiah started
his reformation, the above could hardly be said, hence we place it about
640-630 B.C. Zephaniah's message was one of mingled reproof and consolation.
Out in front stands the Chaldean invasion with its dire consequences.
This is apparently his day of wrath, so vividly depicted in Chapter 1.
He does not, however, name the nation that God has selected as his instruments
of chastisement. This is reserved for Habakkuk who was a little later
(Hab. 1:6). The Scythian, those, who gave Job a lot of trouble, invaded
into Media and Assyria. This took place about the time of Zephaniah.
The Scythians possibly extended southward toward Jerusalem but could not
be the desolation mentioned in Chapter 2, because it was too weak.
This invasion, however, is favored by modern writers who wish to do away
with the foreknowing of events by the prophets.
The visions and contents:
There's only one distinct break in the composition and it is between chapters
2 and 3. A transition of less marked degree divides the book into
The prophetic exhortation
announced a far-reaching judgment on Judah and Jerusalem. He then
sets forth the reasons for its afflictions; namely, the prevalence of idolatry
and religious apostasy (1:1-6).
The judgment is then
described in reference to the various classes on which it shall fall, namely;
princes, Kings, children; those clothed with foreign clothing i.e. strangers,
the violent, and the deceitful. Jerusalem would then be searched
with candles, that is by the Spirit of God, for the indolent and indifferent
(1:7-13). The destructive characteristics of the day of wrath are
then described (1:14-18).
And exhortation to
repent before it's too late is then given, "Before the decree bring fourth,
before the day pass as the chaff, before the fierce anger of the lord come
upon you, before the day of the Lord's anger come upon you" (2:2).
Encouragement is then
given for those who seek the Lord. Oppressive nationalities are falling
on all sides before the mighty axe of All Mighty God. His worship
is to be established in all the courts of the heathen.
Then referring to
his own country he denounces Jerusalem as full of corruption and as hopelessly
obstinate (2:4-15). Jerusalem obeyed not the voice of God, she received
not correction, she trusted not in the Lord, and she drew not near to her
God. These are four serious charges (3:1-7).
From this he immediately
passes again to the final issues, which are, God's wrathful visitation
shall ultimately result in the expansion of his kingdom to the gentiles.
The Second Coming of Christ winds it up (3:8-10). The promotion of
the purified remnant of Israel to a position of great honor is the result
Haggai 520 B.C.
The author: In a point
of time Haggai was the first of the post captivity Prophets. Of his
parents or tribe nothing is known. It is not known whether he was
born in Judea before the captivity or in Babylon during the captivity.
The actual time is
closely fixed to the day, the first day of the month, the sixth day of
the second year of Darius I.
His prophecy was delivered
to Zerubbabel, governor of Jerusalem. Zerubbabel was in the royal
line. It was also delivered to Joshua the high priest (Hag. 1:1;
The occasion of writing;
The purpose was to arouse the restored exilests from a condition of religious
torpor or apathy, and to induce them to complete the restoration of the
The edict of the first
year of Cyrus, 536 B.C., had brought up to Judea 42,360-free men.
And 7,337-male and female slaves or helpers. In the seventh month
of 536 B.C. The exiles had set up an altar to Jehovah and had observed
the feast of tabernacles, which is in October. The next year 535
B.C., the foundation of the second house of God was laid. That was
15 years before, under the leadership of Zerubbabel, the governor of Jerusalem,
finished building the temple (Ezra 3:6, 8-13).
At that time Zerubbabel
had refused an offer of help from certain Samaritan groups and tribes.
The Samaritans then tried to hinder them (Ezra 4:4-5). Rehum and
Shimshai, who were leaders of this Samaritan group, appealed to the Persian
court to Ahasuerus, Cambyses. Their entreating did not come to a
head until the accession of Artaxerxes in B.C. 522 or 521 B.C. Artaxerxes
forbade the rebuilding of the city, but said nothing of the temple.
It was easy for Rehum and Shimshi to include the temple by force of power
(Ezra 4: 23-24).
lasted less than a year. The ascension of Darius II, Hystaspis in
B.C. 521 lifted the restrictions. But interest had waned and the
rich were building their own fine houses and the House of God remained
in semi ruin (Hag. 1:4). Work on it had been entirely suspended for
at least one year and a half.
It was at the close
of this period that Haggai and Zechariah came forward and prophesied to
the Jews in Judea and Jerusalem (Ezra 5:1). The mission of both Prophets
dates from the middle of the second year of Darius 520 B.C. (Hag. 1:1-22;
Divisions of the
book its contents; In the book there are five sections. All happens
within the period of four months. His career was brief but to the
Hag. 1:1-11: Haggai
rebuked his compatriots for their neglect of the House of God. Their
religious apathy is declared to be the cause of a drought. Neither
had their selfishness in building their own houses first profited them.
They expended much labor with little results (Hag. 1:1-2). NOTE: Ideas
for a tithing sermon Hag. 1:6-11 would be the reading and the text would
be Prov. 11:24.
Hag. 1:12-15: The
leaders of the people obeyed the voice of God through the prophets.
It was then that the building of the temple was resumed. It was completed
in four years and dedicated in the sixth year of Darius, B.C. 516 (Ezra
Hag. 2:1-9: the old
men in comparing the House as finished to the glory of the former one were
downcast. Haggai informs them that this Houses’ glory would exceed
the glory of the former temple (2:3-9). Then they were encouraged.
His prophecies were fulfilled in Luke 2:22, 46.
fourth address refers to the prevalent drought and shows that the labors
of men's hands had hitherto been cursed.
Hag.2: 20-23: The
Prophet’s final utterance attaches the promise of Chapter 2:1-19 to the
line of Zerubbabel. When the powers of this world are overthrown;
God shall select this line for special honor (2:20-23). Zerubbabel,
the son of Shealtiel, was in the Levitical line and hence in the messianic
On this web site in
the Apocalyptic Literature class notes in Lecture 7 is a chart that shows
this genealogical transition occurs in the person of Nathan.
Zechariah 520-581 B.C.
The prophet describes
himself as the son of Berechiah the son of Iddo. In Ezra 5:1. He
is called the son of Iddo, but is really the grandson. He was a contemporary
of Haggai and prophesied for two years 520-518. Much that he said
was fulfilled in the life of Jesus.
The case for writing
the book was the rebuilding of the temple which is also the occasion for
writing the book Haggai. The genuineness of chapters 1 to 8 has never
been a question. Chapter 9-14 is said to differ in style, and are
regarded by some as a different authorship. We shall deal with both
sections as written by Zechariah.
Contents of chapters
1-8: These chapters consist of three distinct prophetic utterances.
The first utterances
Chapter 1:1-6. It is a declaration of the prophetic mission and in
turn is exhortation to the people to turn to the Lord that He might turn
to them. He also warns them not to neglect the word of God, which
neglect proved so costly to their forefathers.
The second utterance is
found in 1:7-6:15. We have a series of seven visions with two appendices
(2:6-13 and 6:9-1, 5). Those additions appear to have been actual
1:7-17: the horsemen
among the Myrtle trees. They were to scan the horizon and be prepared
to move with God when he fulfilled his promises.
1:18-21: the four
horses and the four horsemen indicate that God will continue to remove
the hostility of the Persians even as he had already of overthrown the
power of the Assyrians, Egyptians, and Babylonians.
2:1-5: a man with
a measuring line refers to the enlargement and perfect security of the
people of God.
3:1-10: Joshua the
high priest is assigned before the Angel of the Lord. The priesthood whose
representative Joshua was, were to put away evil and change their garments
or purify themselves.
4:1-14: the candle
sticks with the two Olive trees. The anointing oil of the Spirit
of God was to be upon the priesthood and the civil powers. This represents
the millennial reign of Christ. Zerubbabel hands were to finish the
5:1-11: the Flying
role and the woman in the ephah, denotes possibly curses upon sinners and
the punishment of sin.
6:1-8: the four chariots-God's
judgments on the nations.
6:9-15: the appendix
and the crowning of Joshua, possibly referring to The Branch as a King
The inquiry concerning fasting and the prophets rebuke for the people for
their formalism. The answer to their inquiries is in the form of
a proverb and their fast should be turned into feast.
In Chapters 9-1, contents:
The style changes
after chapter 8 but this does not mean very much.
Chapters 9-10: the
doom of the surrounding nations which are mentioned in Chapter 9:1-6.
The struggle and eventual triumph is set forth and the coming of the king
Chapter 11, and 13:7-9.
Contains the storm that threatened the shepherds; their rejection of the
Good Shepherd; and the doom of the foolish shepherds.
Chapter 12:1-9 is
the struggle of Israel with the nations
Chapter 13:1-4: zeal
is expressed against the prophets in general. In this area there
is a great reference to Jesus being wounded in the house of his friends
Chapter 13:10-14 is
the mourning over him whom they pierced.
Chapter 14: the last
things as they are seen in the light of the old dispensation.
Malachi is written
after the exile. 460-432 B.C. His name is not mentioned by any other
writer of that period. Malachi possibly is not his name; a nom-de-plume
The contents of the
book are one of rebuke. In the form that we now have it, it is one
single address or else a systematically of arrangement of various oral
addresses. There are six sections each connected to the other.
Chapters 1:1-5, God's love
for Israel set forth and Israel's ingratitude declared “I have loved you.”
God then proves that he did by showing that he rejected Esau and chose
Chapter 1: his rebuke
of the priests. "O priests, that despise my name. And ye say, wherein
have we despised the name? Ye offered polluted bread upon mine alter;
and ye say, Wherein have we polluted thee? In that ye say, the table
of the Lord is contemptible” (1:6-7).
The prophecy of spiritual
worship of God among the heathen is then prophesied. “For from the
rising of the sun even unto the going down of the same my name shall be
great among the gentiles; and in every place incense shall be offered unto
my name, and a pure offering: for my name shall be great among the heathen,
saith the Lord of hosts” (1:11).
The people are rebuked for marrying heathen women, that is non God-fearing
women. They had divorced their Israeitish wives. “Yet ye say, wherefore?
Because the Lord had been a witness between thee and the wife of the youth,
against whom thou hast dealt treacherously: She is thy companion, and the
wife of thy covenant?”
The rebuke of the skeptics and a prophecy of the sudden coming of the Lord
to their temple. 2:17 is a much-quoted reference to the coming of the Lord
(3:1f; Luke 2:25-33).
The New Testament
begins exactly where the Old Testament leaves off; thus the Old and the
New are one book.
Chapter 3:6-12: a
further rebuke for the formalism and skeptics for withholding their tithes
and offerings. “Will a man rob God? Yet ye have robbed me.
But ye say, Wherein have we robbed thee? In tithes and offerings” (3:8).
the righteous are commended and the wicked condemned. The Sun of
Righteousness to arise with healing in his wings. God keeps the book of
remembrance. Elijah the prophet is to come first. Jesus explained
that it was John the Baptist: "And this is the Elijah which was to come
forth. (Mal. 4:5; Matt 11:14; Luke 21:17).
Conclusion: Closing notes:
The Bible begins with
an account of how light had dawned upon the earth. The Old Testament
closes with the announcement of the Sun of light who is Jesus who is the
coming of the spiritual light or the Sun of Righteousness (Mal. 4:2).
The New Testament begins with the star of the East (Matt 2:9-11).
With the dayspring from on high (Luke 1:18) and the coming of the light
of man (John 1:4-9). The New Testament ends with the prediction that
no light of man is needed, for Jesus will be the light of all (Rev.22:
The Bible is thus
message of light; starting with symbol and ending with glory.
Elijah was first to
come. He came in the person of John the Baptist, a man of fiery like temperament,
who was to herald the Christ. Jesus said that man was John the Baptist.
They all looked for such a person to come, and Jesus’ interpreting John
the Baptist as that man is shown in Matt. 17:2, Mal.4:5, Luke 1:13-17,
John 1:23, Matt. 11:14. He was not the very person of Elijah but
one in spirit and in the power of Elijah.
Thus the Old Testament
ties right on to the New Testament and Matt. 3:1 is where it continues.
List of Apocrypha Books
I. 1 Esdras
II. 2 Esdras
V. Addition to the Book
VI. Wisdom of Solomon
IX. Three additions to Daniel
X. The prayer Manasses
XI. 1 Maccabees
XII. 2 Maccabees