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Wednesday, March 31, 2021

Ezekiel 4:3

Moreover take thou unto thee an iron pan, and set it for a wall of iron between thee and the city: and set thy face against it, and it shall be besieged, and thou shalt lay siege against it. This shall be a sign to the house of Israel.

For further study - Ezekiel 4:1-17

The last ten words of our key verse in our devotional reading for today, "this shall be a sign to the house of Israel," expresses not only the 4th chapter, our extended reading for today, but the entire book of Ezekiel as it records the life and ministry of a unique man who God gave a unique ministry.

What God would have Ezekiel do as a "street preacher" in front of the Jewish people, Ezekiel's own people, would indeed be a "sign" to the "whole house of Israel." Even the "tile" with Jerusalem drawn upon it and the "iron pan" that Ezekiel would use were both object lessons to the Jewish captives who had been taken into the Babylonian Captivity.

The Lord then has His prophet to lay in the street on his "left side" for 390 days and then on his "right side" for 40 days for a total of 430 days. Each day was to represent a year of judgment to come upon the Jews.

The Lord realized that His prophet would get both hungry and thirsty during his "street" ministry. The Lord made provision for Ezekiel to have about 8 ounces of meat every day, verse 10, and about one quart of water each day, verse 11.

Ezekiel would receive all the ingredients for the prophet to make his bread daily and then God gave him very strange instructions. God told Ezekiel that he was to bake his bread over a fire made out of "human excrement" that was the result of a "bowel movement" done in public, verse 12.

Please excuse what may seem to you vulgarity but I am simply quoting the text. This strange method of baking the bread was for the purpose of revealing to the Jews that they would eat "defiled bread" among the Gentiles as part of their judgment.

This was an action that conveyed to the Jews the seriousness of their sin. You will notice that the Lord did ease up on the baking of the bread and told Ezekiel that he could substitute "cow dung" for "human dung."

I chose this passage to illustrate to each of us the extent, and seriousness of God's judgment upon His people, the Jewish people.

I also believe that this passage best illustrates how a man who sees the "Glory of the Lord," Ezekiel 1:28will be obedient to the Lord no matter what He calls him to do.

You may say, "But how can we see the Glory of the Lord?" The Psalmist told us in chapter 19"the heavens declare the Glory of the Lord." That 19th Psalm also says that all of creation reveals the "Glory of the Lord."

Our problem is that we don't take advantage of the opportunities we have to look and see the result of His glory. We must "stop and smell the roses" and observe the "Glory of the Lord" so that we might follow His directions without hesitation.

PRAYER THOUGHT: Help me, to recognize Your "glory", dear Lord, in Your "handiwork" in all of creation and then to be obedient to You.
Tuesday, March 30, 2021

Ezekiel 3:17

Son of man, I have made thee a watchman unto the house of Israel: therefore hear the word at my mouth, and give them warning from me.

For further study - Ezekiel 3:1-27

After Ezekiel saw the "glory of the Lord," chapter 1, the priest-prophet, Ezekiel, is selected by the Lord to go to his own people with prophecy that will be fulfilled in the short-term.

A study of the person of Ezekiel will be of great benefit to your study of Bible prophecy. In the years I've been studying Ezekiel, almost 20 years, I have come to know a man that allowed God to use him for the Lord's own purpose without any reservation.

In Ezekiel 2 we see the record of the Lord setting the priest in the office of prophet as well, verse 5. There are only three men in scripture that were both priest and prophet. Ezekiel is one, and Jeremiah and Zechariah are the other two.

God's plan for Ezekiel would include not only having him as a "street preacher" but the prophet that He would give all the details for what is called "Messiah's Temple." This is the temple that Jesus will build and rule and reign from during the Kingdom period.

You will notice also that the Lord sends Ezekiel to a rebellious nation, Ezekiel 2:3, and a people that will reject his message and in fact, even mock the prophet, Ezekiel 2:5. In chapter 3 God does something very strange, He makes Ezekiel mute or "dumb," that is, unable to speak, Ezekiel 3:26. He then told Ezekiel he could only speak what the Lord would put in his mouth, the words he would speak would be God's messages to the Jewish people, Ezekiel 3:27.

Ezekiel would be mute for over seven years, talking only when God put something in his mouth. God also made the prophet a "watchman," one who would warn the people of a coming danger, Ezekiel 3:17.

A watchman would "hear the word from the Lord" and "warn the people." I believe God wants all of us to be "watchmen," hear the prophetic word of the Lord and then, knowing the urgency of the hour, warn the people.

PRAYER THOUGHT: Help me to study your prophetic word Lord, so that I can understand the times we live in today and warn the people, as many as possible, as soon as possible.
Monday, March 29, 2021

Lamentations 1:8

Jerusalem hath grievously sinned; therefore she is removed: all that honoured her despise her, because they have seen her nakedness: yea, she sigheth, and turneth backward.

For further study - Lamentations 1:1-22

The sorrow of Jeremiah expressed in Lamentations is from the loss of the City of Jerusalem to the mighty Babylonian army under the leadership of Nebuchadnezzar. The chapter preceding Lamentations 1 is the 52nd chapter of Jeremiah, which is a record of the destruction of Jerusalem and the carrying away into the Babylonian captivity of the Jewish people.

In his third siege of Jerusalem, the Babylonian King killed the leadership of Judah, many of its Jewish residents, burned the city down and destroyed the Temple (read Jeremiah 52 and II Chronicles 36). The loss of all that was sacred to the Priest-Prophet Jeremiah was what motivated him to write Lamentations, of course under the "inspiration" of the Holy Spirit.

Once a year, even until today, the Jewish people will gather at the entrance to the Temple Mount to pray for the Temple to be rebuilt. They also mourn as they read through the book of Lamentations. This is their effort to have the Lord restore their Temple worship and sacrificial system to meet the needs for purification as they search for "redemption" outside the person and work of Jesus Christ.

According to Bible Prophecy, there will be another Temple in Jerusalem, in fact, two more Temples, but neither one will give them the "salvation" that only Jesus can give. By the way, all the preparations have been made for the next Temple to be erected in Jerusalem.

The next Temple in Jerusalem will be the one built during the Tribulation Period. All that must be done to build and operate a Temple has been done except for removing the gold-domed structure known as the "Dome of the Rock."

When the Temple Mount is clear of any other religious building on this very sacred spot then the Jews will erect their Temple. Remember, this will happen sometime after the Rapture - which could happen today.

PRAYER THOUGHT: Help me Lord to live today as if the Rapture will happen today.
Sunday, March 28, 2021

Jeremiah 51:1

Thus saith the Lord; Behold, I will raise up against Babylon.

For further study - Jeremiah 51:1-11

The passage of prophecy is a parallel passage to Jeremiah 50, which we have looked at in a previous devotional. This chapter, as well, deals with the "final" destruction of the city of Babylon, which is the area of modern-day Iraq.

The Lord’s first statement in this chapter, and in our key verse for today, verse 1, is that He will rise up against Babylon. Remember, this passage was written over 50 years before the fall of the Babylonian Empire, which happened in 539 BC.

This prophecy, however, is not written for the "near time fulfillment" of the "pre-written" history, written by the Jewish Prophet Jeremiah. This is a prophecy that will be fulfilled at the end of the Tribulation Period, Revelation 18.

This prophetic passage must be read in the context of Isaiah 13 and 14Jeremiah 50Revelation 16:17-21 and 18. These chapters call for the total destruction of the city of Babylon, which has never been fulfilled. Only the Babylonian Empire was destroyed in the past, Daniel 5.

Verses 6-8 and 10 speak of how the Lord will use the city of Babylon to accomplish His will in the future. Revelation 18 reveals that in the last three and a half years of the Tribulation Babylon will be the world headquarters for the "one-world" economic, political, governmental system that will be controlled by the "Antichrist."

Jeremiah 50:28 and verse 11 of our devotional reading for today indicates that the reason for the removal from the earth of this historic city, Babylon, is the Lord’s vengeance of His Temple and what the Babylonian King Nebuchadnezzar did to the Temple and the implements of the Temple, II Chronicles 36:18-21.

These prophecies will be fulfilled and the "stage" is actually set now for this to all happen. The focus of this world on the Iraqi war and the rebuilding of war-torn Iraq has been that which has helped "set the stage" for God’s Word to be played out.

Just before we conclude this devotional thought please look at the first part of verse 11. It mentions the Medes of the Medes and Persians of Biblical times. Experts tell me that the Biblical "Medes" are the modern-day Kurds located in the northern area of Iraq.

Jeremiah 51:11 records the Lord’s action of raising up the "spirit of the kings of the Medes" for the purpose of the destruction of Babylon. Will God use the "Kurd’s" in Iraq to help bring down Babylon, I do not know.

What I do know is that Babylon will be destroyed. Bible prophecy will be fulfilled. The world today is set up for these prophecies to be fulfilled, but first the Rapture will take place. He will shout and call us up to meet Him in the "air." That could happen at any moment, keep looking up.

PRAYER THOUGHT: Thank you Lord for the prophetic word that is so up-to-date, it seems we are reading from the "newspaper" instead of the Bible. Help me to realize how close we are to the fulfillment of Bible prophecy and live my life in light of these truths.
Saturday, March 27, 2021

Jeremiah 50:28

The voice of them that flee and escape out of the land of Babylon, to declare in Zion the vengeance of the LORD our God, the vengeance of his temple.

For further study - Jeremiah 50:28-40

The passage of prophecy selected for today's devotional and extended reading is from the whole of Jeremiah 50. Though I have only given you thirteen verses to read, verses 28-40, I suggest that you also include the entire 50th chapter of Jeremiah for your reading today.

In fact, Jeremiah 50 and 51 go together as one prophecy; however, we'll take a look at Jeremiah 51 for another devotional reading. These two chapters are part of the prophetic ministry of the "priest-prophet" Jeremiah that God had selected, sanctified and ordained even before his conception or birth.

Jeremiah was selected as a Prophet to the nations, in eternity past, Jeremiah 1:5. There are other nations that Jeremiah wrote about prophetically in this book that must be understood as they relate to the end times as well.

As we come to Jeremiah 50 we see that this unique Prophet, 2,500 years ago, was actually pre-writing history for our day. Reading through Jeremiah is like reading from the front page of any major newspaper.

Jeremiah introduces this entire chapter, verse 1, as the prophecy from the Lord, given to Jeremiah and focused on Babylon. Remember, when Jeremiah wrote this chapter of prophecy, Daniel and his three Hebrew friends had just been taken into the Babylonian Captivity.

The Jews were facing the threat from Nebuchadnezzar and the mighty Babylonian Army, by which all Jews would be eventually taken into captivity. Jeremiah, before the fact, would tell the people how long they would be in this captivity, and out of Jerusalem, Jeremiah 25:11 and 29:10.

In this passage, this Jewish Prophet was revealing the eternal destiny of the Babylonians. Three times in Jeremiah 50 the Lord tells the prophet that Babylon, the literal city of Babylon, will be destroyed, forever.

In fact, when you include Jeremiah 51 in this prophecy it is seven times totally, that Jeremiah speaks of total destruction of Babylon, Jeremiah 50:13, 39-40 and Jeremiah 51:29, 37, 43 and 62.

Biblical Babylon is today modern Iraq. These passages of prophecy pertaining to the total destruction of Babylon have not been fulfilled. In Daniel 5 we see the record of the fall of the Babylonian Empire; however, the city of Babylon was not then destroyed and has not been destroyed yet.

This total destruction of the literal city of Babylon takes place at the end of the seven year Tribulation Period, Revelation 16:17-21, and it is done in one hour, Revelation 18:10, 17 and 19. (See my audio series, "The Babylon Factor.")

Before we leave Jeremiah 50 please look at verse 29. The reason that the Lord totally destroys the city of Babylon and all the Babylonians, the modern-day Iraqi's, is that King Nebuchadnezzar took the implements out of the Temple in Jerusalem and placed them in his idolatrous temple in Babylon, and then burned the Temple, II Chronicles 36: 18-21.

I mentioned that modern-day Iraq is Biblical Babylon thus all that we see happening today in that part of the world is setting the stage for Bible prophecy to be fulfilled, possibly in the near future.

Prophecy becomes very practical as we determine where we are on God's prophetic clock, by studying His prophetic plan, found in His prophetic Word.

PRAYER THOUGHT: As I come to an understanding of the times by studying Your Word, dear Lord, help me to get my heart right and please use me to warn others of the times in which we are living.
Friday, March 26, 2021

Jeremiah 33:20-21

Thus saith the LORD; If ye can break my covenant of the day, and my covenant of the night, and that there should not be day and night in their season; Then may also my covenant be broken with David my servant, that he should not have a son to reign upon his throne; and with the Levites the priests, my ministers.

For further study - Jeremiah 33:1-26

This thirty-third chapter of Jeremiah is a confirmation of the great prophecy concerning the Davidic Covenant that the Lord gave to King David, II Samuel 7, some 3,000 years ago. That covenant is as true today as it was when the Lord gave it to David, the second King of Israel.

Within this chapter are some great promises, not only to King David, and Jeremiah the Prophet, but by "spiritual application," to us today, as well. Look at the first one in verse 3. "We can call upon the Lord for great and mighty things, that we knowest not." Please remember, this promise is in light of the principle of prayer in I John 5:14-15.

I must just take a look at the "mountain peaks" in this chapter due to time and space. Really, I could write for three days of devotions on this one chapter. Please read the entire chapter and dig out the great truths found in Jeremiah's writings.

In verse 15 God speaks to Jeremiah about the "Branch," that which is a name for Jesus Christ, Isaiah 4:2 and 11:1Zechariah 3:8 and 6:12-13. God will raise-up the "Branch" to execute judgment and righteousness in the land of Israel.

At that same time the Lord will cause all who dwell in Jerusalem to dwell safely. Jerusalem will be called "the Lord our righteousness." Remember, the Davidic Covenant called for a Temple to stand in Jerusalem and a King to rule and reign from that Temple for the 1,000 year Kingdom, yet to come.

This thirty-third chapter of Jeremiah restates, confirms, afresh and anew that God will keep His promise to King David. Verses 20-21 tell us the only way God could break this covenant.

Jeremiah records the Lord's only "escape clause" to the promise, the day and the night would have to disappear from this time in history for the Lord to be able to break the promise. If day and night could be done away with then the Lord could also cast David away and the seed of Jacob, the Jewish people, as well.

Of course we can't make the day and the night disappear; therefore, there will be a Temple in Jerusalem and Jesus Christ, the "Branch," the Son of David, will rule and reign from there in the Kingdom He promised to King David and the Jewish people.

That is a promise that you can take to the bank. What is so precious to me about this chapter is that if the Lord can't break His promise to King David, He can't break His promises to me, the promises of salvation, provision, protection and all that He said will happen in the future. Praise His wonderful name.

PRAYER THOUGHT: Thank you Lord for being a promise keeping God, what a comfort that is to me.
Thursday, March 25, 2021

Jeremiah 31:35-36

Thus saith THE LORD, which giveth the sun for a light by day, and the ordinances of the moon and of the stars for a light by night, which divideth the sea when the waves thereof roar; THE LORD of hosts is his name: If those ordinances depart from before me, saith THE LORD, then the seed of Israel also shall cease from being a nation before me forever.

For further study - Jeremiah 31:1-40

The date June 7, 1967 marked one of the most important days in Israel's modern day history. On that date, after almost 2,000 years, the Jewish people reunited their "holy city" of Jerusalem.

The Israeli Defense Force stormed off the Mount of Olives, down through the Kidron Valley, through the Lion Gate of the Old City, and on to the Temple Mount to capture this sacred piece of real estate for the Jewish people.

This was a very emotional moment for paratroopers who captured the entire Old City on "day three" of the Six Day War. Israel fought this war on 3 fronts and was victorious. The Israelis were under attack from the north by Syria, from the east by Jordan, and from the south by Egypt.

I remind you of this benchmark in Israel's history because of our devotional reading for today, as it relates to that day. The prophet Jeremiah 2,500 years ago foretold of a time in history future from his day that the Jewish people would return to their land after centuries of being scattered around the world.

Jeremiah 31:8-10 tells of how the Lord will bring the Jewish people from all over the world back "home." Jeremiah 31:17 reveals that these Jews gathered from the "four corners of the earth," will be brought back into their land, into their own borders. Notice in Jeremiah 31:23, the Lord promises to give back to the Jewish people their Hebrew language.

Jeremiah 31:38-40 talks about the return of Jerusalem to the Jewish people, which was partially fulfilled on the date, June 7, 1967. I say partially because the city of Jerusalem will be a center of controversy until the Messiah, Jesus Christ, sets up His kingdom. Jesus Christ will reign over His kingdom from Jerusalem for 1,000 years.

Our key verses, Jeremiah 31:35-36, reveal to us the commitment of God Himself to His plan for the Jewish people. The only way that God would break His promises to the Jewish people would be if the sun, moon, and stars were to be destroyed in the heavens.

Jeremiah 31:31-33 records the "New Covenant" that is given to the Jewish people. The New Covenant lasts forever. It is referring to the time that the Jewish people accept Jesus Christ as Messiah and Saviour, and He becomes their God. It's a time, as well, when the Jewish people will be His people. This prophecy has yet to be fulfilled.

As we think of the reunification of Jerusalem on June 7, 1967, and with the other prophecies of Jeremiah 31 being fulfilled, we can know that the prophecy of Israel's salvation will also come to pass, seemingly in the near future.

PRAYER THOUGHT: Thank You, Lord, for Your commitment to the Jewish people in the past, and the future. It is an assurance of Your commitment to me, as well.
Wednesday, March 24, 2021

Jeremiah 30:7

Alas! for that day is great, so that none is like it: it is even the time of Jacob's trouble, but he shall be saved out of it.

For further study - Jeremiah 30:1-11

Starting with the thirtieth chapter of Jeremiah we move into the section of this prophetic book referred to as the "messages of consolation," where Jeremiah, "the weeping prophet," reveals his heart and the prophetic Word of God that is somewhat of a "consoling message" to the Jews who had heard the previous messages of retribution.

Jeremiah 30-33 are the four chapters where the Lord uses the ministry of Jeremiah to console the Jewish people. As the prophet begins this section he does so in chapter 30 with a mix of retribution and consolation.

Jeremiah lets the Jews know that though they will go into the Babylonian Captivity, and indeed they were taken captive by the Babylonians, that the Lord would bring them back into "the land of their forefathers," verse 3.

Jeremiah told the Jews that they would actually "possess the land" as promised to the patriarchs, Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, verse 3b. This passage has a "double fulfillment" as is the case in other prophetic passages as well.

This means that there would be a "near term fulfillment" of these prophecies, and these prophecies were fulfilled, the Lord did return the Jews to the "land of their forefathers." The "long term fulfillment" of these prophecies, that the Jews would come back into the land in the last days, is in the process of being fulfilled, even today.

Verse 8 says that the "yoke" of the enemies of the Jewish people will be broken in the future, and that "King David" will be raised up to be co-regent with Jesus Christ as the Lord rules and reigns at the Temple in Jerusalem in the future Kingdom.

Notice verse 7 and the warning of "troublesome times" for the Jewish people, which is also yet future. I'm referring to the seven year "Tribulation Period" that takes place after the Rapture of the Church.

Jeremiah referred to the "time of Jacob's trouble" which is the last three and a half years of the seven year "Tribulation Period." The "time of Jacob's trouble" is like no time ever in the history of the Jewish people, verse 7.

It will be a time when the Lord dispatches the Archangel Michael, Daniel 12:1, to keep the Jews from being totally eliminated. God promised Jeremiah that there will be a great number of Jews to be saved, both physically and spiritually, out of the "time of Jacob's trouble."

By the way, as we watch the events of today unfolding and those things happening in Israel and among the Jewish people, it seems to be an indication that we are quickly approaching the "time of Jacob's trouble."

Remember, the Rapture takes place before the Tribulation, and the Lord's shout for us to join Him in the heavenlies could happen today.

PRAYER THOUGHT: Thank you Lord for Bible prophecy that alerts me of the times I'm living in. Help me to live for You as I await Your return.
Tuesday, March 23, 2021

Jeremiah 25:11

And this whole land shall be a desolation, and an astonishment; and these nations shall serve the king of Babylon seventy years.

For further study - Jeremiah 25:1-14

You must remember that God chose Jeremiah to be a "prophet to the nations" before he was born, before he was conceived, in fact the prophet was chosen by God in the Lord's mind in eternity past, Jeremiah 1:5.

As a "prophet to the nations" Jeremiah was a prophet first to his own people, the Jewish nation. In the passage from our devotional reading for today we see that the prophecy of the "seventy years" was mentioned in Daniel. Daniel 9:2 reveals when Daniel in his own quiet time, his devotional reading, read about the "seventy years" that Jerusalem would be desolate.

I’ll have more on that in a moment.

This passage is a record of the prophetic ministry of Jeremiah before the Jews would be taken into the Babylonian Captivity. Jeremiah forewarns the Jews that the King of Babylon, Nebuchadnezzar, verse 9, would be the "servant of the Lord."

The Babylonian King would be used by God to make the Jewish people give the land that He had given them the "sabbatical" that He called for in Leviticus 25:1-7.

Every seventh year the Jews were to rest the land, plant no crops on the land, give the land a "Sabbath." The Jews had not obeyed the Lord for 490 years so He would use "His servant" Nebuchadnezzar, to take the Jews out of the land for that "70 Sabbaths" that the land should have been given.

What a practical lesson we can learn from this event in the lives of the Jewish people. When God tells us to do something He means for us to obey. Sometimes when we disobey He will force the issue and we learn the hard way to be obedient.

Now back to Daniel and his quiet time, his reading in Jeremiah, actually he read the same passage as we are today and he learned that Jerusalem would be desolate for 70 years, verses 11-12.

When Daniel read Jeremiah he was 85 years old, 70 years after he was taken captive by King Nebuchadnezzar, when he was 15 years old. Daniel was able to understand where he was in God's prophetic time and plan by reading the prophetic Word of God.

We also can understand the times we are living in and how close we may be to the Lord's return by reading the prophetic scenario for the "end times" found in Bible prophecy.

By the way, when you do read Bible prophecy you will realize we are very close to the Lord's "shout" at the Rapture, to call us up to be with Him. That Rapture could actually happen today, so keep looking up.

PRAYER THOUGHT: Help me, Lord, to live for your soon return as I understand the times we are living in by reading Bible prophecy.
Monday, March 22, 2021

Jeremiah 16:17

For mine eyes are upon all their ways: they are not hid from my face, neither is their iniquity hid from mine eyes.

For further study - Jeremiah 16:10-21

Jeremiah was a Prophet, chosen and set apart for his ministry by the Lord, in eternity past. We know this from His statement in Jeremiah 1:5, "Before thou camest forth out of the womb I sanctified thee, set thee apart for service."

In fact, the first part of verse 5 says that "Before I formed thee in the belly I knew thee," referring to Jeremiah who God knew in His mind in eternity past. Jeremiah was set apart to be the "prophet to the nations" which included the nation of Israel as well.

In Jeremiah 16 the Lord, through Jeremiah, speaks to the Jews about the way their fathers failed to obey the Lord and walk in His way. Then he says to them, verse 12, "and ye have done worse than your fathers."

This is exactly what is happening among the Jews today, but there is a "spiritual application" in these verses as well. The "Body of Christ," the Church, is moving each and every day away from the purpose of the Church, set in place by Jesus, the "Head of the Church."

The purpose of the Church is basically two-fold, to be Holy as He is Holy and to go out into the world and win people to the Lord for their eternal salvation. By the way, we are to "go out" not try and bring the people into the church.

The early Church, during the first century, set the pattern, Acts 5:42. The new Christians daily went into the Temple, which was not a church, but a gathering place, and house to house as they "ceased not to teach and preach Jesus Christ."

This is a "spiritual application" from this passage. As we come back now to the "technical interpretation" of the passage notice in verses 13-15 that the Lord speaks of scattering the Jews across the world, casting them out of their land to places they knew not, where they would serve other gods and the Lord would show them no favor.

Verse 14 reveals that the day will come when the Jews will not speak of the "Exodus" at the Passover Seder, as is the custom, but instead will talk about how the Lord brought them from the "land of the north" verse 15, and all the lands where they had been scattered for the last 2,000 years.

This prophecy is being fulfilled even today as we witness over one million Jews from Russia, the "land to the north," immigrating into Israel. There are Jews who have come from over one hundred nations of the world, back into the land as Jeremiah said they would do in the last days.

Please notice one other verse before we leave this passage. It's our key verse for today, verse 17. "They are not hidden from my face, neither is their iniquity hidden from my eyes." The eyes of the Lord are upon us at all times. He sees everything that we do, 24/7.

That is an awesome thought as we watch the Jews returning to the land, nearing the fulfillment of Bible prophecy. That Bible prophecy will be completely fulfilled at a time soon after we have departed from earth at the Rapture. At that point we will stand face to face with Jesus. That could happen very soon, perhaps today.

PRAYER THOUGHT: Please Lord help me to live in the realization that Your eyes are upon me at all times.
Sunday, March 21, 2021

Jeremiah 7:16

Therefore pray not thou for this people, neither lift up cry nor prayer for them, neither make intercession to me: for I will not hear thee.

For further study - Jeremiah 7:1-20

The time of the writing of this passage is around 600 years before the birth of Jesus Christ during the days of King Josiah, King of Judah. Daniel and his three Hebrew companions had already been taken into Babylon to be trained as "counselors" in the court of King Nebuchadnezzar.

Jeremiah, the prophet, receives a message from the Lord, verse 1, a warning to pass along to the Jewish people. The Prophet was to stand at the gate of the Temple complex and to warn all that came up to the Temple to worship.

God's spokesman, Jeremiah, was to tell the Jewish people to amend their ways, in other words, to "get their hearts right with God or else face judgment." The judgment from the Lord was to start at the "house of the Lord," the Temple. The Lord had Jeremiah remind the people of Israel of the judgment that took place at Shiloh, some 500 years earlier, I Samuel 3 and 4.

You might remember that Shiloh was the headquarters for the children of Israel when they came into the Promise Land under the leadership of Joshua. It is also where they erected the Tabernacle, to house the Ark of the Covenant.

Shiloh was the political and spiritual capital of the Jewish people for the first 350 years they were in the Promised Land, Joshua 18:1. The account of God's judgment on the Jewish people at Shiloh in I Samuel 3 and 4 indicates that the "Glory of the Lord departed from Shiloh."

God told Jeremiah to warn the Jews that it could happen again if they didn't get right with Him. Our extended reading for today details the "sins of the people" against the Lord in Shiloh and in the days of Jeremiah's ministry. This was the lifestyle of those coming to the Temple, to supposedly worship the Lord.

This is a similar scenario at many churches in our present world. It was a very sinful time as indicated by the Lord's words to Jeremiah to pray not for these people, verse 16Verse 17 gives us the information of the worship the Jews were offering up to the "Queen of Heaven."

Let me give you some background on the "Queen of Heaven" from extra-Biblical material. The "Queen of Heaven" was the title of the wife of Nimrod, Semiramis, Genesis 11. Nimrod, who built a city, Babylon, Genesis 11:4, also established a religion. This religion was a "mother-son cult" where the mother, Semiramis, and the son, Tammuz, were co-equal recipients of worship.

That worship consisted of serving "cakes" in honor of this false religion established in Babylon. It also involved the parents painting hard-boiled eggs and hiding them for the children to find on their special "holy day" for the "Queen of Heaven" called "Ishtar."

Remember, God told Jeremiah not to pray for those who worship like this. The "mother-son cult," with worship of the "Queen of Heaven," was headquartered in Babylon until the fall of the Babylonian Empire in 539 BC.

The false Babylonian religion moved it's headquarters then to Pergamus in Asia Minor, modern-day Turkey, until the fall of the Roman Empire when it moved to the "seven-hilled city" of Rome, Italy, where it is today and where it will continue to be during the first half of the Tribulation Period, Revelation 17.

God's judgment will come even to those who supposedly worship Him. As we look at our world today we see a similar scenario, as was described for the last days. Judgment must begin at the "house of the Lord." We are living in the "last days."

PRAYER THOUGHT: Thank you Lord for the warning of judgment for sin. Help me to be pure before you in these last days.
Saturday, March 20, 2021

Jeremiah 3:17

At that time they shall call Jerusalem the throne of the LORD; and all the nations shall be gathered unto it, to the name of the LORD, to Jerusalem: neither shall they walk any more after the imagination of their evil heart.

For further study - Jeremiah 3:6-18

Jeremiah, the "weeping prophet," the one chosen by God in eternity past to be a prophet, Jeremiah 1:5, is selected to call a backsliding Judah to repentance. As you read our extended reading today it will remind you of Hosea who the Lord had to take for himself a "wife of whoredom."

Hosea's wife Gomer would continue in her adulterous ways and Hosea would go find her in the street, bring her back home and clean her up to be his wife.

The Lord is addressing the Jews, through Jeremiah, as His wife, Jeremiah 3:14, and calling them to repent, turn from their backsliding and return to service. That message given then, for the backsliding Jews, is appropriate for all of us as well, for today.

In the passage of our devotional reading for today there are three profound prophetic passages that I want you to notice.

Jeremiah 3:16 speaks of a time when there will be no need for the "Ark of the Covenant" and in fact the Jews will even forget the Ark. The Ark was the piece of Temple furniture in the Holy of holies. The Ark was where the "mercy seat" was located. It was where once a year on Yom Kippur the High Priest would enter to make atonement for the Jewish people for the one year, ahead.

As is the case with all implements of the Temple and every activity of the Temple they were a prototype of Jesus to come. The Ark was the model of Him to come. Of course when you have the "real thing", Jesus Christ seated on His throne in the Holy of holies of the Temple you no longer need the model.

Jeremiah 3:17 reminds us that the throne of our Lord will be in Jerusalem. One day the Jews will turn to the Messiah Jesus Christ who will sit on that throne. He will be their God and they will be His people, in Jerusalem.

The last verse I want you to look at is Jeremiah 3:18 which speaks of the time when there will be no longer "two houses for the Jewish people," Judah and Israel, but only one. I must remind you that there today is only one Jewish state, Israel. There are members of all twelve tribes in today's Israel. This has been the case since they returned to the land as recorded in Ezra 1, 2 and 6.

The ancient prophet Ezekiel foretold of a day in the future when there would be again two Jewish states in the Middle East, that's Ezekiel 37:15-23 (See my audio study "Ezekiel: Retribution or Restoration," which is available at This passage in Jeremiah speaks to the unification of these two Jewish states at a time in the future.

I suggest that in the near future, in all three cases, no more Ark, Jesus on His throne in Jerusalem and one Jewish state from two Jewish States, all of these prophecies will be fulfilled.

The stage is set for Bible prophecy to be fulfilled. The next event in prophecy is when the Lord will call us to meet Him in the air at the Rapture. It is so exciting to think that the Rapture could happen today.

PRAYER THOUGHT: Help me to stay in your Word Lord and close to You, so I won't backslide.
Friday, March 19, 2021

Jeremiah 1:5

Before I formed thee in the belly I knew thee; and before thou camest forth out of the womb I sanctified thee, and I ordained thee a prophet unto the nations.

For further study - Jeremiah 1:1-21

I love this first chapter of Jeremiah. It is the record of Jeremiah's call to be a "prophet to the nations of the world." It is God assuring Jeremiah that He can take one who is not a public speaker and give him the words to say. The Lord encourages Jeremiah to not be afraid, that He, the Lord, will deliver him and give him what to speak.

In fact, God set Jeremiah as a prophet among the nations, and a prophet to the nations. The truth is that God did this for Jeremiah before he was born. But wait, verse 5 says God set Jeremiah aside, not only before he was born but, before he was even formed in his mother's womb. In fact, Jeremiah was "chosen" in the mind of God in "eternity past," verse 5.

Jeremiah 1:5 not only gives us background in the forming of the prophet but also is the evidence of when "life" begins, the big question today as it relates to abortion. Life does not begin at birth or even at conception. Life begins in the "mind of God" in eternity past. Now that settles the question.

In a later devotional we will look at other prophetic texts in this awesome book. We will learn of judgments pronounced against the Jewish people and the enemies of the Jewish people. We will find out what will happen to the Jewish people in the last days, just prior to the Lord's return.

If you would like to read ahead, read Jeremiah 31 and 50-51 where you will read about the nation of Israel in the last days and the fate of the country of Iraq. I will have more on those prophetic passages at a later time (see my audio study on Jeremiah).

By the way, Daniel read Jeremiah and was able to determine where he was in God's time by the word of God, Daniel 9:2. You can read the word of God to know the times we're living in today.

A study of God’s prophetic word will help us to know how close we are to the "shout" from Jesus to join Him "in the air" at the Rapture. Let me encourage you to keep looking up, the Rapture could be today.

PRAYER THOUGHT: Dear Lord, help me to study Your Word and teach me to recognize, in these last days, how close we are to the Rapture. Help me to live in light of that knowledge.
Thursday, March 18, 2021

Isaiah 65:17

For, behold, I create new heavens and a new earth: and the former shall not be remembered, nor come into mind.

For further study - Isaiah 65:17-25

The key verse for our devotion for today may sound to you like a passage out of the book of Revelation, and you would be correct. However, the teaching of "new heavens and a new earth" is not original to the book of Revelation.

Actually, the ancient Jewish Prophet Isaiah was the first to mention such an idea. Of course we see the thought first mentioned in our key verse, but in the next chapter of his prophetic book, Isaiah also brings the subject to our attention, Isaiah 66:22.

This passage of Isaiah is looking at the blessings that God has planned for Israel, the Jewish people, in the Kingdom that is yet to come, but also in eternity future. Verses 17 through 19 are looking at the situation in eternity future. Verses 20 to 25 are looking at the Kingdom period as well as eternity future.

Verse 20 speaks of the birth of children in the Kingdom who will be "children" until one hundred years of age. By the way, these children will be born to those, in physical bodies, who trust in Jesus Christ during the Tribulation Period and enter the Kingdom.

At one hundred these "children" must receive Jesus as their Saviour or they will be "accursed" and sent to "hades" to await their sentencing into the eternal "Lake of Fire" at the Great White Throne, Revelation 20:11-15.

Also, please notice, that verses 21 to 25 also speak of this period on the earth known as the "Kingdom" when all will be focused on the "holy mountain" of the Lord, verse 25, where the Messiah, Jesus Christ will be located as He rules and reigns from His Temple. The "holy mountain" is the Temple Mount in Jerusalem, Daniel 9:16.

The first three verses of our devotional passage for today are referring to the time after the Kingdom, as we move into "eternity future" with the "new heavens and the new earth." Notice that the heavens and the earth are not "refurbished", but instead are "created," verse 17.

This old earth, and the heavens, will be destroyed, II Peter 3:10, and the Lord will create "new heavens and a new earth" because the original have been "cursed" by Satan and his evil angels.

This process all begins with the next main event in God’s plan for the future, the Rapture. With our world today moving so quickly towards the "end times" scenario found in God’s Word, the Rapture could happen today.

PRAYER THOUGHT: Thank you Lord for the "look into the future," even into "eternity future." Please help me to use this knowledge of Your plan for what’s ahead, in my life on this earth in the present, to live for You.