25 May Father Steve’s bible Study Notes for Days 288 – 293
Notes for Day 288:
Ezekiel 35-36: In Ezekiel 35; we read about the judgement on Mount Seir; a mountainous area east of the Arabah that extends north-south throughout Edom. In Ezekiel 36:1-15, we read about God placing a blessing on Israel, and in Ezekiel 36:16-37; we read that there will be a renewal of Israel.
Revelation 9: In Revelation 9; we read about the blowing of the 5th & 6th trumpets. After the 5th trumpet came locusts who were given the authority to attack (torture) people for 5 months. The people who are attacked (tortured) wish they could die, but cannot. Who do we read in Revelation 9 that will NOT be attacked? The answer is in verse 4. Remember our notes on the mark of Christ that is placed on the newly Baptized?
Notes for Day 289:
Ezekiel 37-38: In Ezekiel 37:1-14; we read about the Valle of Dry Bones. For those who have attended The Great Easter Vigil; 37:1-14 should sound very familiar. Ezekiel 37:1-14 is one of the readings that we do during the Easter Vigil; Book of Common Prayer, page 290. In Ezekiel 37:15-28; we read about the “two sticks”. These two sticks represent the Northern & Southern Kingdoms. God says that the sticks will become one, just as the two kingdoms will become one. In Ezekiel 38; we read about the invasion by Gog of Magog. It is apparent that God physically leads Gog and his army out for battle (verse 4). In Ezekiel 38:17-23; we read about the Judgement on Gog.
Revelation 10: In Revelation 10; we read about the angel with the Little Scroll. In Revelation 10:4; John hears what the seven thunders say, and is about to write it down. However; he is ordered by either God or Jesus not to write down what he heard. Apparently John witnessed some divine secrets that must not be disclosed. In Revelation 10:9-10; we read about John eating the little scroll. This is a symbolic action, and we saw it in Ezekiel 2:8-3:3. It is a symbolic action of accepting a prophetic commission.
Notes for Day 290:
Ezekiel 39-40: In Ezekiel 39; we read about Gog’s army being destroyed. In Ezekiel 39:11-20; we read about the burial of Gog. Gog is buried in the Valley of the Travelers east of the sea (verse 11). In Hebrew; Valley of Travelers would be “Valley of the Obarim” or “Abarim”. This was a mountain range east of the Dead Sea in northern Moab. In Ezekiel 39:21-29; we read about Israel being restored to the land. In Ezekiel 40; we read about Ezekiel’s vision of the New Temple. In Ezekiel 40:1 we read when this vision occurred: “In the twenty-fifth year of our exile, at the beginning of the year, on the tenth day of the month, in the fourteenth year after the city was struck down…” (April 28, 573 B.C.) There are many measurements given for the dimensions, gates, and pillars, of the New Temple.
Revelation 11: In Revelation 11; we read about the two witnesses (verse 3). As with the other parts of Revelation; there is much symbolism in Revelation 11. The two witnesses are to prophesy for 1,260 days. This would be 42 months, or 3 & 1/2 years. The two witnesses according to Biblical scholars are prophetic figures; possibly Enoch and Elijah, or Moses and Elijah. In verse 4; we read about the two olive trees, and two lamp stands. These were originally thought to be metaphors for Joshua the priest and Zerubbabel the royal heir, God’s two anointed ones. In verse 7; we read about the beast coming up from the bottomless pit. The beast is the antichrist. In verse 8 we see two terms; “great city” and “Sodom”. The “great city” is Jerusalem, and “Sodom” was another name the prophets called Jerusalem. In verse 13; we read about a great earthquake that killed 7,000 people. However; there were others who were not killed; “…and the rest were terrified and gave glory to the God of heaven”. Those who gave glory to the God of heaven, were converted. In Revelation 11:15-19; we read about the seventh trumpet.
Notes for Day 291:
Ezekiel 41-42: In Ezekiel 41; we continue reading about Ezekiel’s vision of the temple. The temple was big. In Ezekiel 42; we read about Ezekiel’s visions of the Holy Chambers, outer walls, and buildings of the outer court. I find it somewhat interesting in Ezekiel 42:14; what is said about not wearing the priests vestments outside the temple. The vestments are considered Holy. My preferred practice as a priest is to not wear an alb (white vestment) outside the Church; or when I am inside a Church assisting with a service where I have no Sacramental role (Celebrating or assisting with the Eucharist). The one exception to me wearing an alb outside the Church, is when I am doing an outside Baptism. Usually, when I am outside the Church doing a service; I will wear my cassock, a surplice, and stole. This is all a preference of my personal piety.
Revelation 12: In Revelation 12; we read about the Woman and the Dragon. We see the term “great portent”. A great portent is a celestial phenomenon with a deeper symbolic meaning. Looking at the symbolism; the woman mentioned in Revelation 12; is thought to be the Blessed Virgin Mary. The dragon is satan. The term dragon is used 9 times in Revelation. The Greek translation in the Old Testament for satan is “Leviathan”; the enemy of God (Job 41:1; 40:25; Psalm 74:14, 73:14; Isaiah 27:1). The dragon with seven heads, symbolizes seven successive rulers. The ten horns symbolizes ten subordinate kings or kingdoms. The male child in verse five, symbolizes the Messiah.
Notes for Day 292:
Ezekiel 43-44: In Ezekiel 43; we read about the glory of God returning to the Temple. In Ezekiel 44; we read about the closed gate (verse 1-3). The closed gate symbolizes the final reentry of God into the temple. In Ezekiel 44:4-14; we read about who may enter the temple sanctuary. In Ezekiel 44:15-31; we read about the requirements of the Levitical Priests.
Revelation 13: In Revelation 13; we read about the first beast and second beast. I call your attention to the ending of Revelation 13, and the second beast; “six hundred sixty-six” (666). Some Biblical commentators explain the “666” this way for Revelation 13:18: The number of the beast, a code name based on the numeric value of letters. Six hundred sixty-six, perhaps the numeric value of the name Nero Caesar in Hebrew.
Notes for Day 293:
Ezekiel 45-46: In Ezekiel 45; we read about the layout of the Holy District (1-9); weights & measures (10-12); offerings (13-17); the the festivals of “Booths” (18-25). If we remember; the festival of Booths is also known as “Tabernacles”. In Ezekiel 46; we read about miscellaneous regulations that involve various offerings and sacrifices.
Revelation 14: In Revelation 14 today; we again read about the Lamb & 144,000. In Revelation 14:3; we see that there is a “new song” that only the 144,000 could learn. We saw in Revelation 5:9 another reference to a “new song”. In Revelation 14; we read about “male virgins”. Celibacy was a requirement for “holy warriors” (Deuteronomy 23:9-14:1; 1 Samuel 21:5-6). We then read in Revelation 14:6-13; about the three angels who deliver messages. The first angel is about the necessity of repentance in light of the imminent judgement. The second angel says; “Fallen, fallen is Babylon the great!” (verse 8). This reference to Babylon, is a code name for Rome. The third angel talks about those who worship the beast and have the “marks on their foreheads & hands”. These marks are the marks of satan – 666. In Revelation 14:13 may sound familiar to those who have attended an Episcopal Burial Service. This is one of the anthems that is said in Rite I (page 469), and Rite II (page 492). We then move into Revelation 14:14-22; reaping the Earth’s harvest. The symbolism used for those who are going to receive the wrath of God are sickles; grape vines, and grapes. These will be cut down and thrown into the “press of the wrath of God” (verse 19).