Monday, April 25, 2005


Mathematicians From the East

Well, I’m pretty sure Daniel had no clue how awesome the Seventy Sevens were because of its complexity. But he wrote the prophecy down and things happened that no one could know, at the time, actually were according to Plan. Since the disciples and Gospel writers don’t refer to it, I suspect these blessed men and women never grasped these current events in full. With God, it’s plan A, all the way. In Zion’s Fire, issue Jan./Feb. 2002, there is a fascinating insight by Rev. Dan Hayden. Did you ever wonder why the wise men were so alert to the coming of a King? Why would they travel a long journey’s way to “follow a star”? One does not follow a star anyway. Stars don’t move! These magi were astronomers and astrologers, which indicates their origin as Babylon, a place where magi would study the stars, historically. This next part is so logical yet so new, obvious yet ‘revelationary’, old yet fresh…I wanted to shout! These men would have been studying Daniel, their predecessor and past chief of magi in Babylon! You know, like we study the classics…Pythagoras, Kepler, Plato, and St. Augustine! (Well, at least the scholarly do!) These guys had read Daniel. They did the math! They knew the time was near…and when they saw the star in the heavens, it was a sign from God. And it was! According to Daniel 1, Daniel was an Israelite, from Jerusalem (Hayden, p 17) Of course, the wise men are going to start with chapter 1, duh. Where else to go, looking for a Jewish King…this Anointed One or Messiah Daniel had foretold?! The star didn’t exactly “lead” them to Bethlehem…but nevertheless, God did use that star over Bethlehem to bring these scholarly men nigh to worship the newborn King. Reading Daniel 7:13-14 gives a clear picture of why these obscure travelers from Babylon would bow down and worship Jesus (Matthew 2:11). “As my vision continued that night, I saw someone who looked like a Son of Man coming with the clouds of heaven. He approached the Ancient One and was led into His presence. He was given authority, honor, and royal power over all the nations of the world, so that people of every race and nation and language would obey Him. His rule is eternal—it will never end. His kingdom will never be destroyed.”

Friday, April 22, 2005


AP Math

H-hm. Shall we pretend we know Jesus was crucified in 33 A.D.? I’m game. There is a message behind the Seventy Sevens and it would be a shame to get tripped up in historical dating and so disregard the historical calculations here. God’s prophecy clearly states 483 years is a key number of years leading up to this moment in time. We, in hindsight, are actually cheating a bit after all, with all those decrees before Jerusalem finally got underway…who could know how to interpret Daniel?!! I would love to go on to explain why God muddled matters so thoroughly. Lots of decrees—and seven sevens plus sixty-two sevens!! Not to mention the discrepancy with a 30 A.D. Good Friday! Holy! Absolutely, He is. I cannot explain and won’t pretend otherwise.
But anyway—here’s the math for Walvoord’s interpretation:

Jewish Calendar
(360 days/year)
(7 x 7)+(62 x 7) years = 483 yrs.

483 yrs.
x 360 days
=173,880 days

Now, take a look at the Gregorian Calendar:
(365 days/year)
444 B.C. to 33 A.D. = 476 yrs.*
476 yrs.
x 365 days
=173,740 days
+ 115 days in leap years
+ 25 days (March 5 - Mar. 30)
=173,880 days
*One year between 1 B.C. and 1 A.D.

I figured somebody was pulling a fast one, conveniently tacking on 24 days in March! But I knew March coincides with Nisan, of the Jewish calendar and Nisan 14 is Passover. So, I found a detailed explanation of Harold Hoehner’s (an expert, far be it from me) research. March 5 is the calculated date in 444 B.C. of Artexerxes’ decree. The 25 days needed to EQUAL prophetic years (483) takes this researcher right to the very day Jesus made His triumphal entry into Jerusalem, March 30,
33 A.D. or Nisan 10 of that year.
If that doesn’t amaze you, well…maybe you didn’t understand. I’ll say it this way. God told Daniel He would rebuild Jerusalem so that Jesus could achieve His purpose there, and He told Daniel, and all who would hear, exactly when. It is so pretty, breathtaking even, that I hate to let the former mentioned ideas taint it. Let me tell you that when I read Dr. Kennedy’s take on it, I was devastated. I have not personally asked him about the problems his belief creates. There are things he leaves unexplained in his book, Messiah. For now, I hope you will take in the beauty of this mathematical amazement, at least to ponder.

Tuesday, April 19, 2005


Do the Math

Daniel 9:25 breaks apart the Seventy Sevens into seven sevens and sixty-two sevens, totaling sixty-nine sevens. Hold that thought…we’re left hanging as far as the last single batch of seven years. So, the 70 (7’s) is split into three distinct sections: 7 (7’s) + 62 (7’s) + 1 (7) =70 (7’s). You might need to refer to this simple math problem a few times because when you add the words of prophecy, it can get lost. Right off the bat, “the first 49 years” (see 7(7’s))…okay, everybody without a math degree with me? My math aptitude is lacking (very low SAT score!) so this is for me, just so you know. In the first 49 years, Jerusalem is rebuilt “with streets and a trench, but in times of trouble.” (v. 25) This coincides with Nehemiah’s request for one in ten in Israel to build a house in Jerusalem (Walvoord, John F.; Every Prophecy in the Bible; p 255) upon completion of the wall. The people of Israel would bring to fulfillment the first seven sevens by rebuilding the city, streets and all, under the leadership of Nehemiah.
The second segment of 434 years (62 (7’s)) is added to the first 49 years, bringing the total to 483 years. Now, hold on to your seats! Remember verse 26 from my last post? The “Anointed One, (the Messiah) will be cut off and will have nothing” at this time…after the 483 years. It’s confusing if you are reading your Bible, which is a good idea! The verse says, “after sixty-two sevens.” Well, don’t give up! The prophecy refers to the middle group of 7’s…but more precisely, sixty-nine sevens had passed when you include the first group of 7’s. Remember 7 (7’s) + 62 (7’s)! Believe me, I’m getting lost writing this…I pray you are doing better reading it! The reason I’m stressing sixty-nine sevens when the verse says sixty-two sevens is the fitting of this prophecy into history. It is important to realize 483 years have passed at the cutting off of the Messiah—not just 434!!
Why? Why? Why?
If we neglect the first 7 (7’s) of v. 25, then the decree of Artaxerxes in 444 B.C. could not be the beginning of the Seventy Sevens yet it was this decree that made it all happen. AND there are no more decrees or logical events connected to Jerusalem’s renaissance 434 years previous to Jesus’ abrupt finish.. Nope, have to stick with 483 years, including the first seven sevens. We know Jesus, the Christ was crucified in 33 A.D., right? Just to keep this all very interesting, Dr. James Kennedy, among many, believes 30 A.D. was the year of Jesus’ crucifixion. What to do with this tangle. How bout I give the differing ideas and then the problem is yours! Ha! Dr. Kennedy calls this the “traditional view”. First of all, it does away with the Church Age gap between the 62 (7’s) and the final seven. This doesn’t float with me but more on that when we get there. Secondly, the interpretation gives the anointing of Christ, the entrance into ministry at His baptism, as the event following the 69 (7’s). Daniel says the Messiah will appear (perhaps His entry into Jerusalem) and is to be “cut-off” at this point, not anointed. But it is true that if you figure 26 A.D. as the crucial point of division (69 sevens), then the cutting off beautifully works out to be 30 A.D. Why must it be 30 A.D. and not 33? The historical records do show the exact dates of Tiberius Caesar’s reign which Luke used to date Jesus’ baptism. (3:1) The first census under Quirinius, governor of Syria, which took Joseph and Mary to Bethlehem, also has a date on it and is referred to in Luke 2. These alterations in Biblical dating, I might mention, throw our calendar off by three years because Jesus was thirty years old when He went public (Luke 3:23)! Jesus wasn’t born at the Divide between B.C. and A.D.! Sends my brain spinning, soooo…I say, give it to God. Walvoord does not dwell on the historical dating of Jesus’ birth and so on, no doubt as a means to retaining his sanity. I invite anyone who has a clue about these things to lend a hand. You’ll find me at my local mental institution. Otherwise, leave a comment.
Returning to some semblance of logic, Walvoord does offer much more on the Seventy Sevens which is some of the most exciting news I have ever encountered. I first studied this in the Community Bible Study which used the teachings of respected theologian Charles Swindoll to portray the popular interpretation as opposed to the traditional view of Dr. Kennedy. The reason I’ve included the latter is because I have great respect for Coral Ridge Ministries and Kennedy’s teachings. These are not truths that should divide us at all but simply encourage us to keep seeking God’s true interpretation because both cannot be right.

Sunday, April 17, 2005


Daniel in the Lion's Plan

Since the whole crux of the matter is Jesus, Him being at the center of our Gospel, maybe the starting place should be Daniel. Huh? The Seventy Sevens has been referred to as the “backbone of biblical prophecy”. An amazing prophet, Daniel was given a fulfillment of Jeremiah’s prophecy in his lifetime. Jeremiah 19:10 foretold Israel’s captivity in Babylon and put a number on it—seventy years. Hello…I thought we were talking about Jesus? Well yeah. Soon. Before I forget, this is not from Christianity is Jewish. Most of this info comes from Walvoord’s Every Prophecy in the Bible. Back to Daniel. Sixty-seven years after the prophecy of Babylonian captivity, Daniel read Jeremiah’s writings and began praying for the return of his people to their homeland. (Dan. 9) Seventy prophetic years (360 days/yr.) was cut slightly short (the captivity lasted from 605 BC-538-37 BC) possibly because of Daniel’s prayer of submission, confession, and petition. Daniel was then given Messianic prophecy, the Jesus part, and end-time prophecy. Gabriel came to Daniel while he was still in prayer, to tell him of the “Seventy Sevens”. Conservative scholars mostly agree that this means 490 years. What will happen in those years? Daniel 9:24 says:
1)”To finish transgression”
2)”to put an end to sin”
3)”to atone for wickedness”
4)”to bring in everlasting righteousness”
5)”to seal up vision and prophecy”
6)”to anoint the Most Holy”
Some could be considered fulfilled already. Jesus died on the cross to atone for wickedness. The book of prophecy has been sealed in the completion of the Bible. Nothing is to be added (or taken away). Some of these visions, we painfully know, are not completed. Sin has not ended and the ‘Most Holy’ has yet to have His Temple place, a throne. What these six things all have in common is that they are the Almighty God’s plan for His Creation. The setup was completed. Israel had been given the chance to freely follow God and they had failed.
Where does the 490 years begin? “Know and understand this: From the issuing of the decree to restore and rebuild Jerusalem until the Anointed One, the Ruler, comes, there will be seven ‘sevens’ and sixty-two ‘sevens’.” Problem: there were four separate decrees before the rebuilding of Jerusalem actually got going all the way to completion! Three rulers had to give it a push! The first decree given by Cyrus in 538 BC (at the release of the Jewish peoples) didn’t make it happen. (2Chron. 36:20-23) Cyrus is one of three people named in prophecy before they were born, by the way. (Isaiah 44:24-28) Jesus is another. Maybe we’ll learn the third later. A second decree of Darius, confirming the decree of Cyrus (Ezra 6:6-12) and the decree of Artaxerxes (Ezra 7:11-26) didn’t bring on a new Jerusalem. Not until a second decree from Artaxerxes (Nehemiah 2:1-8) and the miraculous date of 444 BC were the city and city wall rebuilt. Why so special is this? It marks the perfect beginning of the Seventy Sevens or 490yrs. Daniel's prophecy covers this time of rebuilding in Nehemiah through all history to the New Heaven, New Earth and the New, Eternal Jerusalem. (Rev. 21 and 22)
How can we know the decree is the beginning of the Seventy Sevens? Because Daniel gives us a date for when “the Messiah is cut off”. (Dan. 9:26) It’s after sixty-two sevens.

Thursday, April 14, 2005


God's a Dictator!

What are we doing when we attempt to revise God’s plans? Are we convinced He needs to change with the culture? Is that what we think we are doing when we accept homosexuality, women’s ordination, abortion, or when we don’t accept as history the miracles of the Bible. Is God’s judgment and our obedience to Him just too much righteous talk? Are we supposed to revise the Bible to fit our own truth? Is God still using people to breathe new truth? Or does He want us to continue in the old truth…His Work completed in the original authors’ words? Why does John write in the final verses, “If anyone adds anything to [these words]…”, threatening the worst of what Revelation has to offer? Is taking God at His Word an all or nothing proposition? Too radical? Edith Schaeffer thinks not. God is unchanging. So why on earth would He allow falsehoods to penetrate His Holy Book? Why would He change His Truth for this new age, this next generation? My God is so much bigger than that! He is solid. God is not swaying with every whim of humanity. He is a Rock. My favorite radio host once said, “God’s a dictator! Get over it!” Life is not simple….but God’s Truth Revealed in Scripture is. Believing it in this world of relativism, where human reasoning is changing truth daily, by the second, where truth is muddled in debate under the guise of democracy, is definitely NOT SIMPLE. But it is a choice we make and renew every day as believers. Edith Schaeffer helped strengthen my conviction and I want to share her insight with you. Before I do, the book of Daniel contains a gem not to be missed. It will be a sort of intro to Edith Schaeffer's perspective on prophecy.

Friday, April 08, 2005


The Perfect Gift

Why is it so difficult to take God at His Word?! Sometimes, the Truth isn’t convenient so we make excuses like, “It was just men like me who wrote the words down." "Sometimes the Word doesn’t fit with our culture today. After all, the gospel was written in a different context of time and place!" So we pick it to pieces. But if we don’t stand on “the gift” of Truth according to God, commonly referred to as the Bible, then we are certainly standing on shaky ground. Any actuality is truth according to me. As an aside, this same mistake is why freedom is in jeopardy as well. Our source of human rights is God because of His absolute Law and Truth. The source becomes mere men when God and the objective Truth He bestowed on His creation are obliterated. The courts, the State, government can make it up as they go. God’s Higher Law is crucial to the survival of Western Civilization. Many (I wish it were many) will read this and not even recognize the audacity of trumping God. What measure do finite, limited and heavily influenced humans have for deciding what is true? (Or what is Law?) Then you ask, “How could the finite, limited and heavily influenced men author God’s book?” Or do as I am doing, vouching for it? 2 Timothy 3:16 says, “the Word is God-breathed”…not inspired, not suggested. God did not allow mistakes and earthly influence to interfere with His Gift of Truth and Revelation to His children. That is what makes it so precious a gift, so Holy, so Divine. It is not to be toyed and tampered with. There have been negligible mistakes made by monks and scribes in copying the books by hand. They were virtually perfect…God’s doing. You know that’s not man-like! God works miracles to perfection using men of little consequence where and when His plan is in force.
I am finite, limited and heavily influenced and I have decided what is true. (Go ahead, punch me!) You are invited to keep an open mind to explore God’s revelation. The Schaeffers’ discernment arises from reality checks, the fit with human history and experience, internal and external evidence. Lee Strobel's books are amazing too. Now we are getting into epistemology…can we know? This is the dilemma of the Christian. We claim to know while we impugn men’s ability to know. It must be understood that all claimed knowledge comes from Scripture, Creation, and the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus Christ. It is not our own. No room for insolence. The gift is for every one.

Friday, April 01, 2005


Terri's Battlecry

"Judge for yourselves whether it is right in God's sight to obey [them] rather than God." ~Acts 4:19
Obedience to God's Law has always been the judicial foundation for this nation birthed in freedom. Always has been, is not now and MUST become again. How, in God's name did we think we could be a government by the people otherwise? This is the cradle of freedom...when the branches start fighting about who is right, the ultimate Truth MUST be derived from the Christian Bible and the Constitution. (NO CONFLICT HERE) God gets the last word. Since when would God ever want parents and siblings to have to watch a daughter/sister starve to death when it is NOT circumstances beyond anyone's control? God is the God of Life. Satan is the Father of death. Even if euthanasia were acceptable in God's eyes, (and it might be ONLY because of the extreme measures of modern medicine. I might wonder if they could revive and keep a corpse alive!) there must be a sworn affidavit/living will. None of this, "she said" evidence. Both sides said she said. The intent of solely the patient must be clear and suicide wishes don't count. Moreover, where on earth did we get the notion that feeding tube equals drastic measures?! Pumping the heart--making the person breathe--yeah, that gets weird and not very natural. But removing a feeding tube is too much like denying the emphysema sufferer an oxygen tank. C'mon, babies can't eat food either...oh, that's right! The law of the land has been allowing infanticide for a while. Could that be why this death of a disadvantaged woman was so acceptable to so many? Afterall, this case would never have happened in the entire history of this country...and never did, until now.
"I am gone like a shadow at evening;
I am shaken off like a locust.
My knees are weak through fasting.
My body has become gaunt with no fat...
With my mouth, I will give great thanks to the Lord.
I will praise Him in the midst of the throng,
For He stands at the right hand of the needy,
To save [her] from those who condemn [her] soul to death."
~Psalm 109:23,24,30,31
Dear Terri, rest in peace, your life's work done. The battle for Life, you have begun. Like a soldier lying down for freedom's cause. The army is stirring, onward, without pause.

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