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Flight ZHA01 - Part B

Connect with Skip Heitzig / Skip Heitzig
The Truth Network Radio
July 12, 2023 6:00 am

Flight ZHA01 - Part B

Connect with Skip Heitzig / Skip Heitzig

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July 12, 2023 6:00 am

Pastor Skip brings you more biblical truth as he wraps up his teaching from Zephaniah and begins to look at the prophetic writing of Haggai.

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This is God saying, I'll be back.

I'm coming back. I'm going to, my presence is going to dwell in Jerusalem and I'm going to be there in person and up close. Today on Connect with Skip Heidzig, Pastor Skip brings you more biblical truth as he wraps up his teaching from Zephaniah. Thank you for joining us today. Connect with Skip Heidzig exists to connect listeners like you to God's truth, strengthening your walk with him and bringing more people into his family.

And when you support this ministry, you keep these teachings you love available to you and so many others around the world so they too can grow and connect with God. Just call 800-922-1888 to give a gift today. That's 800-922-1888 or visit connectwithskip.com slash donate. That's connectwithskip.com slash donate.

Thank you. Now let's head over to Zephaniah as we join Pastor Skip today. Jerusalem is surrounded by hills. On the east you have the Mount of Olives and then you have a valley called the Kidron Valley. Then you have what we call today the Temple Mount where the temple stood. Then you have another little indentation valley. Then you have what is called today Mount Zion. Then on the other side of that you have the valley of Hinnom or Gehenna, sometimes called translated Hell. So if we had an aerial view, if we were over in a drone over the city of Jerusalem, over the old city, if you flew a drone with a camera, and by the way, you can't. It's protected space. I know because last time I brought a drone to Israel and tried to fly it on the Temple Mount, highly restricted.

You get in big trouble for doing that. We found that out. So if you're looking from the sky, an aerial view, it looks like a W. So I'm holding up my fingers to give you that W and I'll show you why. It looks like a W is the letter Shin, S-H-I-N, Shin. Shin is what pronounces the SH sound in Hebrew.

So it looks like a Shin or to us a W. That's what the aerial view looks like. So you have three valleys that look like three fingers. One valley is the Kidron Valley. One valley is called the Tyropoean Valley or the Cheesemakers Valley and the other valley is Hell, Gehenna, the valley of Hinnom. That one in the middle is what was called in ancient times Maktesh because it was the marketplace. Now, Maktesh today, if you've been to Jerusalem, is where the Western Wall is or the Wailing Wall where the Jews congregate to worship. That's that little valley.

That's Maktesh. It talks about the second quarter. The second quarter would be Jerusalem today as four quarters, the old city of Jerusalem. The Christian quarter, the Jewish quarter and the Armenian quarter. The second quarter mentioned in this verse would correspond roughly to the Jewish quarter almost toward the Temple Mount. So that's what it's talking about here, about judgment coming on this place. Now, it mentions the Fish Gate.

I won't get too bogged down. I just want you to know why it's here. The reason the Fish Gate is mentioned is because the Fish Gate is on the north part of the Old Walled City of Jerusalem. It is facing the north, facing toward the Jordan River would be accessed and where the Sea of Galilee would be accessed. If you want to go to Galilee, you go out the Damascus Gate, you go north. So fish from the Sea of Galilee and the Jordan River was brought in through the Fish Gate, through that northern gate. The gate that corresponds with that today in the present day Old City of Jerusalem is the Damascus Gate. I bring that up because it was the Fish Gate. It was the northern gate. It was the northern part of the city that Nebuchadnezzar penetrated when he overthrew Jerusalem.

He went through the Fish Gate. It was the most vulnerable part of the city. So that's part of the prophecy. Verse 14, the great day of the Lord is near. It is near and hastens quickly. The noise of the day of the Lord is bitter. There the mighty men shall cry out. That day is a day of wrath, a day of trouble and distress, a day of devastation and desolation, a day of darkness and gloominess, a day of clouds and thick darkness.

Sounds pretty bad, doesn't it? The day of the Lord is mentioned by the Old Testament prophets and the phrase the day of the Lord shows up in the Bible 26 times in Old and New Testament. 26 times. Zephaniah alone uses it 18 times. Of those 26 times.

18 times. When you see the term the day of the Lord, we're speaking about a day, a time, a period of direct intervention by God in the affairs of the earth. Most often the term day of the Lord is used eschatologically.

Do you know what that word means? End times. Way out in the future. The end of the end. The end of times. The end of days. The last days of mankind on earth. That's eschatologically.

But sometimes it is used in a non-eschatological sense. So in Zephaniah, for example, and we have seen this with other prophets, a day of the Lord is sort of a lens through which we can also see the day of the Lord that is coming. A day of the Lord is coming on Judah. God's punishment, God's direct intervention. But mixed with that is some language that expands it into the ultimate day of the Lord in the future. Make sense? So we have kind of a dual fulfillment.

One that's coming up very soon. One that will be fulfilled in the end of days. Jesus said, blessed are the meek. Now I think the best way to understand the true meaning of the word meek is to take the word and divide it into two words. When you really understand the truth about yourself before God, before a holy God, and you see yourself, it's like, me?

When you really understand God, His holiness, His perfection, and you see yourself in the light of that, you get a true understanding of yourself. Peter said, depart from me, Lord. I'm a sinful man. That's meekness. Isaiah saw the glory of the Lord in a vision. He said, woe is meek. I am undone. That's meekness.

He saw himself in the light of who God is. Seek the Lord, all you meek of the earth, who have upheld his justice. Seek righteousness. Seek humility.

Now watch this. It may be that you will be hidden in the day of the Lord's anger. The name Zephaniah means the Lord will hide. And so you have here another play on words of the word meek. The name of the prophet.

You remember that from our last study. Micah means who is like God. Micah, who is like the Lord. And toward the end of his book, he says, who is a God like you?

It's a play on word of his own name. So the name Zephaniah means the Lord will hide. And he says, it may be that you will be hidden in the day of the Lord's anger. To me, this is a principle. I find it in the scripture that when God judges, God makes a difference with whom he judges.

His judgments are not indiscriminate. In fact, there are several occasions where when God's wrath is poured out, he shelters his own from the expression of his wrath. The flood. The flood destroyed the earth.

But not everyone on the earth. There were eight souls above on an ark. They were, now get this, lifted up off the earth. Judgment came on the earth. These righteous ones were lifted up. They were sheltered. They were taken up during God's time of wrath. When God judged the Egyptians, he made a difference. Those were his words.

I make a difference when I judge. And he protected the children of Israel and Egypt. When it comes to the rapture of the church in the future, Paul says, God has not appointed us unto wrath, but to receive salvation or to obtain salvation. Now, we're talking here about the day of the Lord. We're talking here about a day of wrath. There are perhaps no prophecies that are more detailed in the Bible than the day of the Lord. Now, I know the phrase is mentioned 26 times, but the event is in great detail throughout the Bible. Matthew chapter 24, Luke chapter 21, Revelation chapter 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, and 19. All of those chapters are details about the coming day of the Lord. The day of wrath. Judgment.

Let me just sum it up for you. You know how the book of Revelation, there are three courses of judgments. There are the seven seal judgments, followed by seven trumpet judgments, followed by seven bowls of wrath that are poured out on the earth. And some of the events that occur, smoke, fire, heat, lightning, darkness, falling stars, locusts that torment men five months on the earth.

Here's the snapshot. The opening of the fourth seal judgment in the book of Revelation kills one fourth of the entire population of planet earth. That's one of the seal judgments. By the time we get to the second course and we come to the sixth trumpet, another one third of the population of the earth is decimated. All the people living on earth destroyed in judgment. That's why Jesus said there's not a time like it since the beginning of humanity, nor shall there ever be. When we get to the seventh bowl judgment, the islands flee away, the mountains are leveled, and hailstones come out of heaven that weigh 125 pounds apiece.

On whom they hit. God's a good aim. But through it all, through that day of the Lord, through that tribulation period that is coming through all that pain, all that suffering, God preserves a remnant. That also shows up in the book of Revelation. So that's the first part of this book, a look within his coming wrath on Judah. Second part of this book is look around the coming wrath on other nations. The nations that he's dealing with are in four different directions.

He's going to speak emblematically of the nations, and he'll first of all speak of a nation to the west, and then to the east, and then to the south, and then to the north. Nations in all directions around Judah. The nations mentioned are nations that hassled God's people. God used those nations when they hassled God's people to spank God's people, but he's not going to let those nations that went against Israel to get off easily.

For you remember God said, whoever touches you touches the apple of my eye. So he will execute wrath on those nations that he used to bring judgment on his people because of their motivation. So look down at verse four. For Gaza shall be forsaken, Ashkelon desolate, they shall drive out Ashdod at noonday, and Ekron shall be uprooted. Four cities are mentioned. They are four of the five Philistine cities that were in ancient Israel. The Philistines were a sea people from the island of Crete and then Phoenicia, and they came down and settled along the coast of Israel. The Israelites under King David, et cetera. There were five cities, Ashdod, Ashkelon, Ekron, Gath, and Gaza. All of them are mentioned except the city of Gath where Goliath came from.

The other four are mentioned. Look down at verse eight. I have heard the reproach of Moab. Now we're going to the east of Judah. Verse 12, you Ethiopians also, you shall be slain by the sword.

Now he's going down south. The Babylonians not only invaded Judah, but they first invaded Egypt and Ethiopia. Verse 13, he will stretch out his hand against the north, destroy Assyria, and make Nineveh a desolation as dry as the wilderness. The city of Nineveh. Now remember, Jonah preached against Nineveh. They repented. Then Nahum preached against Nineveh because they went back to their old ways. By the time Zephaniah preached, Nineveh was about to be destroyed. In fact, it fell shortly after this prophecy was given in the year 612 B.C.

It fell. So God is dealing with Judah. God is dealing with other nations.

And guess what? God can because he's God and he is sovereign. And the Bible says the king's heart is in the hand of the Lord. And like a course of river, he turns it wherever he wishes.

He's thrust on the scales. All of these nations thought they were big stuff. And they were. At one time. But God shows them they're just small fries.

They're easy for him to manage. In fact, you probably have not met anyone who would be a Philistine lately. Have you? They're gone. They're long gone. These are nations.

Most of them have been utterly obliterated. The third part is to look beyond. Now we're in chapter 3 and I'm going to take you down to verse 9. Because after the day of the Lord, after the judgment that is coming, comes the well-being and the blessing to his people. And I'm going to take you to a couple of particular verses as we close. Verse 9. For then, for then God is speaking through his prophets. For then I will restore to the peoples a pure language. Or it could be translated, I will purify the lips of the peoples.

That they may call on the name of the Lord to serve him with one accord. Now there is debate. There is dispute as to what this verse exactly means. You don't know. So you're saying, well then if you don't know, just move on.

Well, let me give you a couple of ideas. Most people have the idea that God will take away profane speech, the language of idol worship, and in the coming kingdom, put in its place the language of praise, the language of worship, you know, purifying the lips of all the peoples to praise the Lord. Certainly that is true. That's what Charles Ryrie believes in his study Bible and his literature and many other Bible commentators as well. However, it could be, possibly, don't know, but some believe that it's a reference to the Hebrew language. That God will restore to Israel and eventually as the universal language during the kingdom age, a possibility, Hebrew. Now Hebrew is an interesting language.

It dates back to two millennium B.C. The second millennium before Christ, it was when Hebrew began and it was the official language in Israel until the captivity, until the exilic times. Pre-exilic it was Hebrew. Now post-exilic, when the Hebrews came back, even at the New Testament time, Jesus, the common language on the street, he didn't speak Hebrew. He spoke Aramaic. He spoke the language of the captivity.

That got inculcated and passed down even when they came back in post-exilic times. So Hebrew, up until the time of the captivity, was the official language. It has always stayed the ceremonial language, the language the priests used, the language in the temple and in synagogues, but the official language was in Hebrew. Interesting, however, in 1948 when the Jews were allowed to go back to their land and David Ben-Gurion, their first prime minister, said this is now the state of Israel. The official language once again became the Hebrew language.

What does that mean? It means the prophet Zephaniah today could walk down the streets of Tel Aviv and read the menu on the restaurants. Same language was brought back. A modern Hebrew can read even the ancient script like in the Dead Sea Scrolls. They can work their way through that ancient language. Now that may be true.

That may not be true. That is what the verse means. I'm not sure, but it's interesting to think about. There's all sorts of legends around the Hebrew language. It is called by the Jews, Lashon HaKodesh, which means the holy language. They often say this is the language the angels speak and the language God himself speaks. This is God's language. Of course, God can hear any language at all, but they like to say it's the language of the angels. So Paul said if I speak in the tongue of men or of angels and have not love, I am nothing.

He could have that as a reference. Don't think so, but I'm just kind of throwing all that stuff out there and seeing whatever sticks. Have fun with it.

Look it up on your own. Verse 15, the Lord has taken away your judgments. He has cast out your enemy, the king of Israel. The Lord is in your midst.

There's the promise. You shall see disaster no more. In that day, it shall be said to Jerusalem, do not fear Zion.

Let not your hands be weak. The Lord your God in your midst, the mighty one will save. He will rejoice over you with gladness. He will quiet you with his love. He will rejoice over you with singing.

Sound familiar now, right? We just sang it in the old King James, the Lord thy God in the midst of thee is mighty. He will save. He will rejoice over thee with joy. He will rest in his love. He will joy over thee with singing. So, like a bridegroom rejoicing over his bride, this is speaking of the future kingdom age, the millennial kingdom when Jesus will reign in the midst of Jerusalem with his people in a very real up close kind of a way for a thousand years. Judgment has passed.

The king is in his midst. And that's the reason for the joy. I've been to a couple of weddings. I've officiated a couple of weddings where the groom, as a surprise for the bride, had written a song. And during the wedding, he pulls that baby out and he starts singing over his bride. It's very touching, especially if he has a good voice.

If he doesn't have a good voice, it can be an awkward moment, but it's still a lovely gesture. I just love this thought of the Lord singing over you with joy. And it is speaking of God being present with his people. Do you remember in the book of Ezekiel, chapter 8, 9, and 10, especially chapter 10, where the prophet saw the glory of God depart from the city?

It moved toward the eastern gate, then it moved over the Mount of Olives, then it was taken away. This is God saying, I'll be back. I'm coming back. My presence is going to dwell in Jerusalem, and I'm going to be there in person and up close. That concludes Skip Heitzig's message from the series The Bible from 30,000 Feet.

Find the full message as well as books, booklets, and full teaching series at connectwithskip.com. Right now, we want to share about a resource that will connect you to the path to true spiritual freedom in Christ. Freedom is precious and in human history not common in governance. America was built on the cornerstone that man is endowed by his creator with rights that cannot be taken away. Our government was formed to secure existing rights, not provide them, but there is a higher permanent liberty, the freedom from sin. If you want to fix a society, they need truth.

If you want to fix a broken political system, you need to infuse it with truth and expose ourselves to the truth of the word of God. True freedom is ours, but we need to understand the terms. That's what you'll find in our freedom package of resources by Skip Heitzig. The package features Skip's 10 full-length message set of your path to freedom messages, including Securing the Foundations and Jesus in the Age of Confusion. The freedom package is our thanks for your gift of $50 or more to support Connect with Skip Heitzig.

So request your freedom package today when you give online securely at connectwithskip.com slash offer or call 800-922-1888. And we're excited to send you more content from Pastor Skip and this ministry right to your mobile device. To join our new text messaging group, just text the word connect to 74759.

That's connect to 74759. Then be on the lookout for your first message, a video from Pastor Skip welcoming you to the group. Come back tomorrow as Pastor Skip concludes his lesson from Haggai and challenges you to not lose focus or interest in what God has called you to do.

They have reversed their priorities. Jesus said seek first the kingdom of God and all these things will be added unto you. Our problem is we seek all of these other things and hope that the kingdom of God will be added to us. God says forget about those things, seek first the kingdom and his righteousness and I'll make sure you're taken care of. Make a connection, make a connection at the foot of the cross and cast all burdens on his word. Make a connection, connection. Connect with Skip Hyten is a presentation of Connection Communications. Connecting you to God's never changing truth in ever changing times.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-07-12 05:07:15 / 2023-07-12 05:15:46 / 9

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