The Last Days / Part 1
Good Morning Joes and Janes;
Before heading out to work this morning I wanted to put a few thoughts on paper; well, I guess there isn’t really any paper involved anymore in this process. That’s how sayings can go on in a language even though they are no longer rooted in reality. This thought actually is related to today’s devotional so let’s get started.
A new week begins and as promised in last Friday’s post I will spend some time looking at what the Bible means by “the Last Days”. First let me say that the Bible is written for the common man. The plain and simple meaning is what the text says in the common language. If you believe you have found a contradiction in the Bible then you may need to dig a little deeper, looking at words from the original languages; Greek in the New Testament and Hebrew in the Old Testament. Also just the meaning of words change over time so sometimes you must look at a dictionary for the antiquated meaning of words, particularly if you are using an older translation like the King James Bible.
Are there hidden or deeper meanings in the Bible? Yes, but they will never contradict the plain and simple message at the surface. They may add depth of meaning or more detail but they will never deny the message. I will spend a few days looking at how the words “the Last Days” are used throughout the Bible.
The first use of the term that I found is in Isaiah 2.
1 This is what Isaiah son of Amoz saw concerning Judah and Jerusalem:
2 In the last days the mountain of the LORD’s temple will be established as chief among the mountains; it will be raised above the hills, and all nations will stream to it.
3 Many peoples will come and say, “Come, let us go up to the mountain of the LORD, to the house of the God of Jacob. He will teach us his ways, so that we may walk in his paths.” The law will go out from Zion, the word of the LORD from Jerusalem.
4 He will judge between the nations and will settle disputes for many peoples. They will beat their swords into plowshares and their spears into pruning hooks. Nation will not take up sword against nation, nor will they train for war anymore.
5 Come, O house of Jacob, let us walk in the light of the LORD.
This is a vision that Isaiah, son of Amoz had. It is also important to look at who the text is talking about. The two major groups throughout the old and New Testaments are:
- The Jews; God’s chosen people. Blood line descendants of Abraham.
- Gentiles; All of the other people of the world regardless of skin color, nationality or ethnic origin.
In this case verse 1 says that Isaiah saw things concerning Jerusalem and Judah. There is no reason to start reading mysterious places into this. That is what gets Bible interpreters into trouble. If I had more space I could give you numerous examples but one is a book that I have in my library that was copyrighted in 1947 stating, “obviously there will never be a nation of Israel again” so verses talking about the nation of Israel in the future must be applied to America. This fit a common thinking of the day that we were the “new Israel” where the lost tribes had gone to or that the Jews when they crucified Christ gave up the title of “God’s Chosen People”. The very next year the Nation of Israel was reborn in one day as prophesied in the Bible.
Verse 2 says that in the Last Days the mountain of the Lord’s Temple will be raised up above the hills and all of the people of the world will stream to it. By raised up it could mean physically that it will be taller as through an earthquake or that it will become the dominant place of worship over other places, or both. In either case we know that there is not a temple there now on the Temple Mount in Jerusalem. So it is a point in the future. We also know from reading other texts in the Bible that there are several events that must take place before this time. This is one event “in the last days”.
This time will be a time when many people will go to the Temple Mount and God will teach his ways to them. How can this be? We know from the book of Revelation that Christ returns physically to earth to reign as king for 1000 years, in the last days. It says that he will sit in the Holy of Holies in the Temple and lead the nations. So this happens during the 1000 year reign of Christ in the Millennium.
So the Millennium is one of the Last Days or included in the term the Last Days. In verse we find that he judges between nations and settles disputes for many people. He is a personally involved in a physical reality on our level of existence. This verse also is the verse that is found outside of the United Nations talking about turning weapons into farming implements. During this time war will not be practiced anymore. Imagine a world without weapons! This is the time that it actually occurs but it is brought about by Jesus Christ and his power, not man. Verse 5 is really a closing prayer or encouragement to this section of the text. In other words; because of all of the above things that are promised; let’s follow the Lord, house of Jacob. So again Isaiah is talking to the Jews; the house of Jacob. Can we apply it to us? Well, in the sense that we are grafted into the branch of the Jews when we accept Christ as Savior, yes, but be careful in doing that across the board in verses of prophecy. Some things are written clearly to the Jews in the last days and don’t apply to Gentiles.
More on the “Last Days” tomorrow morning I need to get out the door on my morning run, grab some breakfast and be off to work. Have a great day in the Lord!
- Former PM Olmert: Divide Jerusalem For Peace (jewishpress.com)
- Video of IDF capturing Temple Mount, 1967 (ifaynsh.wordpress.com)
- The First and the Last: Read first the Jewish Bible, and last the New Testament? (onedaringjew.wordpress.com)
- When God is in Charge 2 (livinginthereign.wordpress.com)
Posted on May 21, 2012, in DAILY DEVOTIONAL and tagged Bible, Isaiah, Jerusalem, Jews, Men's Daily Devotional, Regular Joe, Religion and Spirituality, the last days, the Millennium, Tribe of Judah, Zion. Bookmark the permalink. 3 Comments.