FRIDAY MORNING MANNA

Biblical Numerology: NUMBER FOUR & FORTY– Part XVI

The Master Prophecy of the Bible Predicts Only Four World Empires

 

While Daniel 8: 14 is the Bible’s master prophecy, the mother of all prophecies and promises and the seed of the everlasting gospel (Gen. 3: 15; Rev. 14: 6-7) with its comprehensive plan of redemption was in the Creator’s declaration to Satan, disguised as a serpent, and to Eve who had first yielded, then herself became an agent of temptation by inducing her husband to follow her example in disobeying the command of the Creator. They failed the very first test of faith, love, and loyalty through unquestioning and willing obedience. The highest form of worship and adoration is loving obedience, not elaborate and high ceremonies or effusive lip service!

“When the fullness of time was come, God sent forth His Son.” Gal. 4: 4, 5. The Savior’s coming was foretold in Eden—the promised Seed who would bruise the head of the serpent, Satan. When Adam and Eve first heard the promise, they looked forward to its immediate fulfillment. They joyfully welcomed their first-born son, Cain, hoping he was the Deliverer. Instead, he became the first human murderer (Satan was “the murderer from the beginning.”John 8: 44), vagabond, fugitive, and exile.

Untested and untried character of free moral agents with a conscience and a will—the governing power in the nature of man, even in its original sinless nature—cannot be trusted, yet. It had to be developed then, and much more now, six thousand years after the fall through divinely-measured and administered tests and trials until Christ’s image is fully reproduced in fallen man. “Christ in you is the hope of glory.” Col. 1: 26, 27. As promised, “Where sin abounds; grace much more abounds.” Rom. 5: 20, 21. Sin is from Satan and its wages is eternal death. Grace is from God, empowering the penitent sinner to overcome sin, the flesh, and the devil; its reward is eternal life. This life-long work is called sanctification in the Bible, or character perfection. This is what Christ meant in conclusion to His Sermon on the Mount: “Be ye therefore perfect even as your Father in heaven is perfect.” Matt. 5: 48.  Man is to be perfect in his mortal sphere even as God is perfect in His immortal sphere.

The sacred record says: “For Adam was formed first, then Eve. And Adam was not deceived, but the woman, being deceived, fell into transgression. Nevertheless she will be saved in childbearing if they continue in faith, love, and holiness, with self-control” (1 Tim. 2: 13-15; cf. Gen. 3: 1-24). Thus Paul says: “Therefore, just as through one man {Adam] sin entered the world, and death through sin, and thus death spread [passed into] all men, because all sinned. . . .Nevertheless death reigned from Adam to Moses, even over those who had not sinned according to the likeness of the transgression of Adam, who was a type of Him who was to come.” Rom. 5: 12.

As the “second Adam,” (1 Cor. 15: 47), Christ the Creator (The Father’s” unspeakable gift”) took on the “same flesh and blood nature” in which all men are tempted (Heb. 2: 9, 10, 14), He had to be similarly tested on the same grounds that the first Adam fell.  So we read: “Though He was a Son, yet He learned obedience by the things which He suffered. And having been perfected [as mankind’s Example and Savior from sin], He became the author of eternal salvation to all who obey Him.” Heb. 5: 8, 9.

Before moving farther into our topic, l dare not pass up this opportunity for it may never present itself again for someone, to share a New Year’s message from the pen of inspiration as we already end the first week of the New Year 2017! So, whatever your resolutions is/are/were, please consider the following thoughts based on the theme of A Consecrated Life, in the devotional My Life Today by Ellen G. White, p. 5:

      “In the way of righteousness is life; and in the pathway thereof there is no  death.” Proverbs 12: 28.

      Another year now opens its fair unwritten pages before you. The recording angel [our guardian angel as well], stands ready to write. Your course of action will determine what shall be written by him. You may make your future life this year good or evil; and this will determine for you whether the year upon which you have just entered will be to you, a happy new year. It is in your power [imparted by the Holy Spirit to all who importune God for Christ’s enabling grace]—to make it such for yourself and for those around you.

     Let patience, long-suffering, kindness, and love [see fruits of the Spirit, Gal. 5: 22-26] become a part of your very being; then whatsoever things are pure and lovely and of a good report [see Phil. 4: 4-8] will mature in your experience.

     Angels of God are willing to show you the path of life. Decide now, at the commencement of the New Year, that you will choose the path of righteousness, that you will be earnest and true-hearted, and that life with you shall not prove a mistake. Go forward, guided by the heavenly angels; be courageous; be enterprising; let your light shine [see Matt. 5: 14-16] . . . . .

      If you have given yourself to Christ, you are a member of the family of God, and everything in the Father’s house is for you. All the treasures of God are open to you, both the world that now is and that which is to come. The ministry of angels, the gift of the Holy Spirit, the labors of His servants—all are for you. The world, with everything in it, is yours so far as it can do you good. Even the enmity of the wicked will prove a blessing, by disciplining you for heaven [see Heb. 4: 6-11, etc].”

Now this from Great Controversy by Ellen G. White, Plus supplementary material by the editor of Harvestime Books, pp. 350-51. PO Box 300, Altamont, TN 37301:

   “The master prophecy of the Bible is given in Daniel 8. This chapter closely connects with Daniel 7 and 9, and should be studied with them.

    “Daniel 7 (written in 553-552 B.C.) reveals world history from Daniel’s time to the second advent of Christ. In vision, Daniel sees FOUR WORLD EMPIRES symbolized as beasts, followed by a ‘little horn power’ (Dan. 7: 1-8, 15-21, 23-25). The Investigative Judgment then convenes in heaven (Dan. 7: 9-10, 13, 33, 26). And, after that, [earth’s] history ends with the second advent of Christ (Dan. 7: 14, 27-28).

         “The animals in Daniel 7 parallel the parts of the metal image of Daniel 2. The lion in chapter 7 is Babylon (605-538 B.C.). The bear is Medo-Persia (538-331 B.C.). The leopard beast is Grecia (331- 301 B.C.), at which time it was divided into four kingdoms which continued on until around 168 B.C.). The terrible beast was Pagan Rome [of the cruel Roman emperors] (168 B.C. to the 5th century A.D., when it was broken into 10 kingdoms). The ‘little horn’ is Papal Rome, which gained full [civil and religious] power by A.D. 538, by uprooting the 3 [Arian nations that opposed the popes] (the Heruli, Vandals, and Ostrogoths).

      “DANIEL 8 is composed of two major parts.  The first is an EVENT PROPHECY that closely parallels the prophecy of Daniel chapter 7. This prophecy is about two beasts and a “little horn” that follows them (Daniel 8: 1-12, 20-25).  The first beast, a ram, is the Medo-Persia (538-331 B.C.), and the he-goat which struck it down was  Grecia (331-168 B.C.).  The “notable horn[symbolized] Alexander the Great who, before his death in 323 B.C., carved out the largest empire in history up to that time—in only ten years! When he was broken off in the prime of life [at the age of 32], the empire divided into four sections. The little horn is Pagan Rome which, historians tell us, was taken over by Papal Rome. Much of Daniel 7 and 8 (Dan. 7: 8, 19-26 and 8: 9-12, 23-25) is given to a concern over this power which would speak blasphemies (7:8, 20; 8: 11), seek to kill God’s people (7: 21, 25; 8: 10, 24-25), cast down the truth (8: 12, 25), tear God’s sanctuary down from heaven (8:11), and even try to change the law of God (7: 25). Revelation 13 (read verses 6-7, for example) deals with the same little horn power—the Papacy.

        “The second part to Daniel 8 is a TIME PROPHECY (Dan. 8: 13-14, 26): The prophecy itself is given in Daniel 8: 14. ‘Unto two thousand and three hundred days; then shall the sanctuary be cleansed.’ Careful reading of this chapter reveals that, while the angel Gabriel was told to explain the vision of Daniel 8 to the prophet (8: 16),only the event prophecy was explained 98: 17-25) while the time prophecy was only referred to (8: 26). Daniel fainted under the burden (8: 27), and the prayer of Daniel 9 is the result. [read it!].

      “DANIEL 9 begins with the prophet’s prayer for guidance and help for his people (Dan. 9: 1-19). Gabriel, the one whom he had seen in his earlier vision (9: 21), is then sent in answer to his prayer (9: 20), in order to complete the explanation 99: 22-23).

          “THE LONGEST (TIME) PROPHECY BEGINS. The 70-week prophecy (Dan. 9: 24-27) is thefirst part of the of the 2300-day prophecy. Seventy weeks are ‘determined’ (‘cut off’ in Hebrew—cut off from the larger 2300 day[year prophecy) for the Jews [Daniel’s ‘people.’] Therefore, the first part of the 2300-day prophecy of Daniel 8: 14 is a time allocated to the Jews, to conclude their probation as God’s specially-favored [chosen] nation.

     “In Bible prophecy, a day equals a year (Num. 14: 34; Ezekiel 4: 6). The decree of Artaxerxes [king of Persia], given in his seventh year as king in 457 B.C. (Dan. 9: 25; Ezra 6: 14, 7: 6-8), restoring the Jewish government, begins this vast time prophecy of 2300 years. The first 70 weeks (Dan. 9: 24-27) of this prophecy, cut off or allotted to the Jews, equals 490 years.  The walls of Jerusalem were rebuilt in 7 weeks, or 49 years (408 B.C.). Another 62 weeks brings us to the anointing of Christ for His mission in A.D. 27. Now, 483 years were past; only one week remained of the 70. In the “midst’ of this week (Dan. 9: 26-27), A.D. 31, the Messiah was ‘cut off,’ crucified. A second half week of 3 ½ years bring us to A.D. 34, when at the stoning of Stephen [by the Jewish Sanhedrin], the gospel was taken to the Gentiles.

       “THE LONGEST PROPHECY ENDS. In A.D 34 the 70 weeks, or 490 years, was completed.  There remained 1810 years of this longest Bible prophecy, of Daniel 8: 14, to be fulfilled. At its termination, in A.D. 1844, began the ‘cleansing of the sanctuary,’ predicted in this important passage of Daniel 8: 14.

     “Jesus is our High Priest in the heavenly sanctuary (the ‘pattern’ of the earthly). In 1844, He began His final work in it, prior to His second advent to the earth for His people.” (end of quote)

In Uriah Smith’s book, Daniel and the Revelation, which I encourage all students of prophecy obtain and study (Southern Publishing Association), he wrote, pp. 111-113:

    “A Little Horn Among the Ten (Dan. 7: 8). —The “little horn,” as we shall occasion to notice more fully hereafter, was the papacy. The three horns plucked up by the roots represented the Heruli, the Ostrogoths, and the Vandals. The reason for their removal was their opposition to the teachings and claims of the papal hierarchy.  ‘In this horn were eyes like the eyes of a man, and a mouth speaking great things’—fit emblems of the shrewdness, penetration, and arrogant claims of an apostate religious organization.

    “[Dan. 7: verses 9, 10 quoted]. A sublime description of a more awe-inspiring scene is not to be found in the word of God. Not the grand and lofty imagery alone could arrest our  attention;the nature of the scene itself demands most serious consideration. The Judgment is here brought to view. Whenever the judgment is mentioned, it ought to take an irresistible hold upon every mind, for all have a deep concern in its eternal consequences. [Those who claim “once-saved-always saved” or “all-are-already-saved because “it was finished at the cross” do away with the law upon which the last and final work and office of Christ as High Priest, Advocate, Mediator, and Judge of all the earth is based on before He “comes with His rewards according to every man’s work,” Rev. 22: 14].

     “By an unfortunate translation is verse 9, a wrong idea is almost sure to be conveyed. The phrase ‘cast down’ is from a Chaldee word, remi, which may be properly rendered ‘hurled by violence,’ as is plainly the case where it is used to describe the  casting of the three Hebrews into the fiery furnace, and of casting Daniel into the den of lions.  But another equally correct translation is ‘to set or place in order,’ as in the placing of the judgment seats mentioned here, as also a like setting or placing in Revelation 4: 2, in which the Greek bears out the same meaning. The Revised Version in Daniel 7: 9 reads properly, ‘thrones were placed,’ as Gesenius defines the root remah, with reference to Daniel 7: 9 as an example.” (To be continued next week)