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bible reading dec 30



Bible reading for Dec 30. 

2 Chronicles 35.

"And slaughter the Passover lamb, and consecrate yourselves, and prepare for your brothers, to do according to the word of the LORD by Moses." (35:6)

THE GREAT PASSOVER. King Josiah initiates a Passover celebration like none before. The magnificent generosity, the involvement of many lay people (non-Levites, non-priests), and all the people helping one another, mark this as a unique and glorious event in the history of Israel. But this high point would not last. The unity and zeal of the people for the Lord would not endure. Instead, the Passover lamb pointed ahead to One who was yet to come (John 1:29; 1 Cor 5:7). He would be the one to gather and sanctify God's people forever (Ps 110:3; 1 Pet 2:5; Rev 5:9-10). 

THE GREAT DEFEAT. Many generations before, the Patriarch Jacob prophesied that the tribe of Judah would be like a lion, the reigning power, to whom would belong the obedience of the peoples (Gen 49:9-10).  This is echoed in Psalm 2, regarding God's anointed king. Did the descendants of David, like King Josiah, ever wonder if those passages applied to themselves? King Josiah, full of himself, did not consider that Pharaoh Neco's warning might be a word from the Lord. Josiah's death -- while disguised, struck by an arrow, taken out of the battle via chariot -- is eerily similar to the death of the ungodly King Ahab (1 Kings 22:29-37). However, the prophet Jeremiah honors King Josiah (v 25). This last great king of Judah, like all the others before him, was neither the promised Lion of Judah nor the sacrificial Lamb of God. But the Story wasn't over yet! 

REFLECT.  We can rejoice and praise God that our Lord Jesus is both the Lion of Judah and the Lamb of God:  "'Weep no more; behold, the Lion of the tribe of Judah, the Root of David, has conquered, so that he can open the scroll and its seven seals.' And between the throne and the four living creatures and among the elders I saw a Lamb standing, as though it had been slain..." (Rev 5:5-6). 

================   

Revelation 21. 

"Behold, the dwelling place of God is with man. He will dwell with them, and they will be his people, and God himself will be with them as their God." (21:3) 

THE NEW JERUSALEM. God's purpose for history will be realized: He will dwell among his people (Ex 6:7; Lev 26:11-12; Ezek 37:27; 2 Cor 6:16). From his footsteps in the garden of Eden to his glorious presence in the new Jerusalem, God is the Alpha and Omega of history. "The sea was no more" (v 1) does not mean that there won't be large bodies of water in the new creation, but that the sea as it is portrayed in apocalyptic imagery, with its dangerous, churning, and chaotic waters, will no longer exist to give rise to evil and destructive beasts (Rev 13:1; cf Dan 7:3). The holy city, the new Jerusalem, comes down like a bride, uniting heaven and earth. The size of the city -- being cubical like the holy of holies in the tabernacle -- is breath-taking in its immensity, comprising about 2.5 billion cubic miles. The details of construction, like the mention of gold and onyx (vv 18-21), recall the gold and onyx of the garden of Eden (Gen 2:12). What God begins he finishes. History is a kind of chiasm with Christ at the center, and Genesis and Revelation serve as bookends. [See my chart.]

REFLECT. Where is human history going? Is it, as atheists and naturalists believe, just a random flow of atoms and energy which will die out in a bang or whimper? Is it an endless cycle of birth and death and being absorbed? Or, is it as the Bible reveals, on its way to being realized in its fullest potential as the creation of the infinite, personal, holy God? Theologian Herman Bavinck summarizes it this way: "The essence of Christianity consists in this: that the creation of the Father, destroyed by sin, is again restored in the death of the Son of God and recreated by the grace of the Holy Spirit into a Kingdom of God." 


We are following the Robert Murray M'Cheyne (RMM) two-year reading schedule, as arranged by D. A. Carson. Scripture quotations, unless otherwise noted, are from The ESV® Bible (The Holy Bible, English Standard Version®), copyright © 2001 by Crossway, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers. Used by permission. All rights reserved. One recommended resource is NETBible.org, a ministry of bible.org.


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