December 26

Zechariah 9:1-17

Zechariah 9 begins with the declaration of Israel’s ultimate victory over all her enemies – mentioned nations like Syria, Tyre, Sidon, the Philistines, Greece, and even the whole wide world who will oppose Israel under the leadership of the Antichrist, at the end of the age.

Nations that have money, might, wisdom and wealth will not escape the judgment and justice of God! The LORD will destroy, devour, cut-off their pride and defend His people.

Zechariah 9:16 (NKJV) “The LORD their God will save them in that day, as the flock of His people. For they shall be like the jewels of a crown, liffted like a banner over His land.”

God will not only spare Israel, He will restore to them “double” – He will open the windows of heaven and lavish blessings that make-up for all of their losses. It’s a word to all the prisoners who may have still been in Babylon, it’s time to come home!

Zechariah 9:12 (NKJV) “Return to the stronghold, You prisoners of hope. Even today I declare that I will restore double to you.”

All this is made possible, because of Jesus Christ! We read that amazing prophecy of His entrance into Jerusalem on a donkey. We commonly refer to it as Palm Sunday – that was the Day Jesus publicly revealed Himself as Messiah to the people.

Zechariah 9:9 (NKJV) “Rejoice greatly, O daughter of Zion! Shout, O daughter of Jerusalem! Behold, your King is coming to you; He is just and having salvation, lowly and riding on a donkey, a colt, the foal of a donkey.”

When a king rode into town on a donkey it meant He was coming in peace. This day was not only prophesied here, but also in Daniel 9:24-27. Daniel said it would be 62 “sevens” plus 7 “sevens” for a total of 69 seven-year periods from the issue to restore and rebuild Jerusalem to the coming of the King. The issue went forth on March 14, 445 B.C.. If you calculate the days involved it equals 173,880 days, which brings you to April 6, 32 A.D. – the VERY DAY Jesus rode into Jerusalem on a Donkey…according to Zechariah 9:9.

Revelation 17:1-18

One of the seven angels spoke with John in order to show him some details about the judgment of God on the “great harlot.” Many Bible teachers refer to Revelation 17 as the judgment of God on “Religious Babylon,” while Revelation 18 is the judgment of God on “Commercial Babylon.” Warren Wiersbe explains the harlot, “The woman represents the ultimate in godless world religion. She is joined with government (carried by the Beast) and corrupts everything she touches.”

As John is carried away in the Spirit he sees this woman sitting on (riding) a scarlet beast which has blasphemous names, seven heads, and ten horns (an obvious reference to the antichrist). We believe that in the last days there will be a dominant one-world religion that will “marry” (work hand in hand) with the antichrist. Revelation 17:5 associates her with Babylon the Great, the mother of all harlots, because it was there at the tower of Babel (Genesis 11) that man tried to reach heaven by his own works (religion). This is the heart and soul of every other belief system known to mankind – they’re all trying to earn their way to heaven through good works, they’re all trying to climb “up” the mountain. Christianity is the only belief system in the world where God has come down the mountain, we are saved by grace alone, through faith alone, in Christ alone, all other “religions” are descendants of, and bonded to Babylon.

In the last days this religion will ride the advantages of the government, something to be wary of. Again, Warren Wiersbe comments on this, “Though Christians must be good citizens and seek to influence government for the Lord, the church must not marry political systems. The systems will only use the church to promote their own plans and then abandon it.” Which is exactly what the antichrist does, in the end (see Revelation 17:16) once the antichrist is done using the religion of the day he devours it and creates his own, where he presents himself as God (2 Thessalonians 2:4).

Together the antichrist and the harlot are responsible for the death and blood of many, many martyrs of Jesus (Revelation 17:6). But it’s better to die for Christ, than to live for the devil. The only way a person can make sure he or she is not swept away by the antichrist (who will be the epitome of evil deception) is to have their names written in the Book of Life (found 7 times in the Book of Revelation). This principle is true of all our challenges and temptations in life – the only way to “overcome” is to place our faith in Jesus Christ – this is how we “win” against the antichrist.

John goes on to give us details on the 7 heads and 7 mountains (Revelation 17:9-11). Some might point to the 7 mountains as a reference merely to Rome, which is often described as a “city built on 7 hills,” – this same school of thought points largely to the Roman Catholic church as the harlot. That may be true, but as I read the description in Revelation 17:10 (…five have fallen…one is {present tense} the beast is of the seven but will be the eighth) it seems to refer to world powers, 1-Egypt, 2-Assyria, 3-Babylon, 4-Medo-Persia, 5-Greece, 6-Rome, 7-the Revived Roman Empire (European Community), 8-the antichrist will rise out of the Revived Roman Empire. The ten horns are the 10 districts this Empire will be divided into (these are the toes of Daniel 2:41-42). 

With all this on the horizon, let us flee mere religion and make sure we are those who are “…called chosen and faithful.” (Revelation 17:14)

Psalm 145:1-21

Another absolutely beautiful Psalm of David – speaking of the fact that we are called to bless the LORD – to praise the LORD, every single day of our lives!

May we praise Him. May our children praise Him, their children, and their children.

Psalm 145:4 (NKJV) “One generation shall praise Your works to another, and shall declare Your mighty acts.”

As we honestly meditate upon God and His mighty acts, we blessed that He is gracious and compassionate; He’s slow to anger. He’s good to all and tender over all His works. We are God’s work and at the same time we are called to work for God, to spread the Word of His coming Kingdom, and our coming King.

If you find yourself down or burdened, it’s good to know:

Psalm 145:14 (NLT) “The LORD helps the fallen and lifts those bent beneath their loads.”

There will be times when we fail and fall (many times) – but God will be there to lift us up, to encourage us when we’re down.

Let’s just do our best to walk with God and seek Him in all sincerity, if we do, we’ll find Him and be close to Him.

Psalm 145:18 (NKJV) “The LORD is near to all who call upon Him, to all who call upon Him in truth.”

Proverbs 30:32

Proverbs 30:32 (NKJV) “If you have been foolish in exalting yourself, or if you have devised evil, put your hand on your mouth.”

As the Proverb talks to all of us, I’m talking to myself:

If you’ve exalted yourself in any way, you might want to humble yourself right away. If you’ve talked smack and devised any evil, you might want to do whatever you can to stop such foolish talk, put your hand over your mouth, use duct-tape, if necessary – because God sees and hears everything, and He will deal accordingly.

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