Tuesday, March 20, 2012

One Vision, Two Comings

Things Hidden-1
For we did not follow cleverly devised tales when we made known to you the power and coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, but we were eyewitnesses of His majesty. So we have the prophetic word made more sure, to which you do well to pay attention as to a lamp shining in a dark place, until the day dawns and the morning star arises in your hearts. But know this first of all, that no prophecy of Scripture is a matter of one's own interpretation, for no prophecy was ever made by an act of human will, but men moved by the Holy Spirit spoke from God. 1 Peter 1:16,19-21

The Holy Prophets of the Old Testament saw ONE vision concerning Christ's first and second comings. Scripture interprets Scripture and it's incredibly faith-building to see prophesies about Christ's first coming, some of which proclaimed 700 years before His birth and every stroke of the pen, fulfilled. As we wait with eager expectation, we must fix our eyes on Jesus, the Author and Perfecter of our faith. He is the One, whose name is The Word of God, who was, and is and is to come. He is the One, who spoke and it was, who knelt down and formed man out of the dust of the earth and yet for us and out of His abundant love for sinners, became that which He created.
The Lord Almighty has sworn, "Surely, as I have planned, so it will be, and as I have purposed, so it will stand." Isaiah 14:24. In Isaiah's visions, He saw a Suffering Servant and a reigning King and the two were not separated. Let me explain, In the book of Isaiah, which was written 700 years before Christ, Isaiah prophesies about the coming of the Lord, The Spirit of the Lord GOD is upon me, because the LORD has anointed me to bring good news to the afflicted; He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to captives and freedom to prisoners; to proclaim the favorable year of the LORD and the day of vengeance of our GOD. Isaiah 61:1-2. As was the custom, Jesus returned to His hometown of Nazareth to speak in the synagogue. Jesus when speaking in the synagogue in Nazareth, opens up the scroll to Isaiah 61 and reads "The Spirit of the LORD is upon Me, because He anointed Me to preach the Gospel to the poor. He has sent Me to proclaim release to the captives and recovery of sight to the blind, to set free those who are oppressed, to proclaim the favorable year of the Lord." And He closed the book, gave it back to the attendant and sat down; and all eyes of the synagogue were fixed on Him, Luke 4:18-21. Jesus then proclaims, "Today this Scripture has been fulfilled in your hearing." 4:21. Did you notice what Jesus did not proclaim to the people of Nazareth? He did not proclaim the day of vengeance of our God. The verse in Isaiah that Jesus read had one vision of two comings. Jesus, as coming to proclaim the favorable year of the Lord, and Jesus coming during the day of vengeance. After 400 years of silence, and as the nation was occupied by Roman rule, Christ the Messiah, comes to fulfill the prophesies of Suffering Servant, Lamb of God, Faithful Witness, and Firstborn among the dead.

Isaiah 53 The Suffering Servant
Who has believed our message? And to whom has the arm of the LORD been revealed? For He grew up before Him like a tender shoot, and like a root out of parched ground; He has no stately form or Majesty that we should look upon Him, nor appearance that we should be attracted to Him. He was despised and forsaken of men, A man of sorrows and acquainted with grief; and like one from whom men hid their face He was despised , and we did not esteem Him. Surely our griefs He Himself bore, and our sorrows He carried; yet we ourselves esteemed Him stricken, smitten of God, and afflicted. But He was pierced through for our transgressions, He was crushed for our iniquities; the chastening of our well being fell upon Him, and by His scourging we are healed. All of us like sheep have gone astray, each of us has turned to his own way; but the LORD has caused the iniquity of us all to fall on Him. He wasoppressed and He was afflicted yet He did not open His mouth; like a lamb that is led to slaughter, and like a sheep that is silent before its shearers, so He did not open His mouth. By oppression and judgment He was taken away; and as for His generation, who considered that He was cut off out of the land of the living for the transgressions of my people, to whom the stroke was due? His grave was assigned with wicked men, yet He was with a rich man in His death, because He had done no violence, nor was there any deceit in His mouth. But the LORD was pleased to crush Hi, putting Him to grief; if He would render Himself as a guilt offering. He will see His offspring, He will prolong His days, and the good pleasure of the LORD will prosper in His hand. As a result of the anguish of His soul, He will see it and be satisfied; by His knowledge the Righteous One, My Servant, will justify the many, as He will bear their iniquities. Therefore, I will allot Him a portion with the great, and He will divide the booty with the strong; because He poured out Himself to death, and was numbered with the transgressors; yet He Himself bore the sins of many, and interceded for the transgressors. NASB

Revelation, on the other hand, deals with Isaiah's prophesies of Messiah coming during the day of vengeance, when the favorable year of the Lord comes to a close and a new time is ushered in. The book of Revelation is the revealing of Jesus Christ, who is coming again in great glory and triumph, as King of Kings and Lord of Lords. It is in essence, His Revelation at His Second Coming, the culmination of events that usher in His Eternal Kingdom and fulfill His eternal promises to all the called, chosen and faithful.

Isaiah 11: Righteous Reign of the Branch
Then a shoot will spring from the stem of Jesse, and a branch from his roots will bear fruit. The Spirit of the LORD will rest on Him. The spirit of wisdom and understanding, the spirit of counsel and strength, the spirit of knowledge and the fear of the LORD, and He will delight in the fear of the LORD, and He will not judge by what His eyes see, nor make a decision by what His ears hear; but with righteousness He will judge the poor, and decide with fairness for the afflicted of the earth; and He will strike the earth with the rod of His mouth and with the breath of His lips He will slay the wicked. Also, righteousness will be the belt about His loins, and faithfulness the belt about His waist. And the wolf will dwell with the lamb, and the leopard will lie down with the young goat, and the calf and the young lion and the fatling together; and a little boy will lead them. Also, the cow and the bear will graze, their young will lie down together, and the lion will eat straw like the ox. The nursing child will play by the hole of the cobra, and the weaned child will put his hand on the vipers den. They will not hurt or destroy in all My holy mountain, for the earth will be full of the knowledge of the LORD, as the waters cover the sea. THEN IN THAT DAY, the nations will resort to the root of Jesse, who will stand as a signal for the peoples; and His resting place will be glorious. NASB
Things Revealed-1

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