Friday, April 05, 2013

Part 2 - To Number Our Days Aright - More Examples of 3 Things and Then a 4th

To number our days aright let [us] know, And we bring the heart to wisdom. ~ Psalm 90:12 YLT

In Part 1, I offered three passages of scripture as exhibits of the pattern the Lord revealed to me first from John 13:38, where three things of a kind are followed by a special fourth of a different kind. In each case, a cryptic prophetic scenario appeared in that fourth thing that will be fulfilled during this fourth Shemittah counted off from the sign of the Lord's return in judgment. What we found in the parable of the soils (which was underscored by the way the accounts were recorded), in the calling of the prophet Samuel and in the journey that resulted in the taking up of Elijah in a whirlwind amounts to a small sampling of this validating testimony in the scriptures. The following examples speak just as loudly to me.

When Joshua led the children of Israel into the promised land he accomplished what had been denied Moses before him. It is a peculiar feature about the life of Moses that it comprised three equal divisions of time, of 40 years each. This can be easily gleaned from Acts 7.

23 But when he was approaching the age of forty, it entered his mind to visit his brethren, the sons of Israel.

29 At this remark, Moses fled and became an alien in the land of Midian, where he became the father of two sons. 30 “After forty years had passed, AN ANGEL APPEARED TO HIM IN THE WILDERNESS OF MOUNT Sinai, IN THE FLAME OF A BURNING THORN BUSH.

36 This man led them out, performing wonders and signs in the land of Egypt and in the Red Sea and in the wilderness for forty years.
~ Acts 7:23, 29-30 and 36

Because Moses' life is so neatly divided into three equal parts and because Joshua's life leadership may be seen as something of an extension of Moses, the same pattern is evident!

In this next example, a parable from the Gospel of Luke presents a sequence of four agents sent by the owner of a vineyard, the fourth of whom is the owner's beloved son.

9 And He began to tell the people this parable: “A man planted a vineyard and rented it out to vine-growers, and went on a journey for a long time. 10 At the harvest time he sent a slave to the vine-growers, so that they would give him some of the produce of the vineyard; but the vine-growers beat him and sent him away empty-handed. 11 And he proceeded to send another slave; and they beat him also and treated him shamefully and sent him away empty-handed. 12 And he proceeded to send a third; and this one also they wounded and cast out. 13 The owner of the vineyard said, ‘What shall I do? I will send my beloved son; perhaps they will respect him.’ 14 But when the vine-growers saw him, they reasoned with one another, saying, ‘This is the heir; let us kill him so that the inheritance will be ours.’ 15 So they threw him out of the vineyard and killed him. What, then, will the owner of the vineyard do to them? 16 He will come and destroy these vine-growers and will give the vineyard to others.”When they heard it, they said, “May it never be!” ~ Luke 20:9-16

And yet, it will be, and according to that same pattern!

In the seventh chapter of Daniel, the prophet relates a dream and visions where four great beasts were coming up from the sea.

1 In the first year of Belshazzar king of Babylon Daniel saw a dream and visions in his mind as he lay on his bed; then he wrote the dream down and related the following summary of it. 2 Daniel said, “I was looking in my vision by night, and behold, the four winds of heaven were stirring up the great sea. 3 And four great beasts were coming up from the sea, different from one another.

( description of three beasts in sequence )

7 After this I kept looking in the night visions, and behold, a fourth beast, dreadful and terrifying and extremely strong; and it had large iron teeth. It devoured and crushed and trampled down the remainder with its feet; and it was different from all the beasts that were before it, and it had ten horns.
~ Daniel 7:1-3, 7

Matching the now familiar prophetic pattern, the fourth in sequence is different from the three before it. Later in the chapter an interpretation is given where the four beasts are four kings (v 17). After inquiring again more particularly about the fourth beast, the explanation given links to a vision given later to John (as recorded in the book of Revelation).

23 “Thus he said: ‘The fourth beast will be a fourth kingdom on the earth, which will be different from all the other kingdoms and will devour the whole earth and tread it down and crush it. 24 As for the ten horns, out of this kingdom ten kings will arise; and another will arise after them, and he will be different from the previous ones and will subdue three kings. 25 He will speak out against the Most High and wear down the saints of the Highest One, and he will intend to make alterations in times and in law; and they will be given into his hand for a time, times, and half a time. 26 But the court will sit for judgment, and his dominion will be taken away, annihilated and destroyed forever. 27 Then the sovereignty, the dominion and the greatness of all the kingdoms under the whole heaven will be given to the people of the saints of the Highest One; His kingdom will be an everlasting kingdom, and all the dominions will serve and obey Him.’ ~ Daniel 7:23-27

Once more, we note how that it is within the different fourth that these very notable things prophesied will be fulfilled.

That account from the seventh chapter of Daniel must be compared to one from the second chapter, where we find another distinctive countdown sequence.

32 The head of that statue was made of fine gold, its breast and its arms of silver, its belly and its thighs of bronze, 33 its legs of iron, its feet partly of iron and partly of clay. 34 You continued looking until a stone was cut out without hands, and it struck the statue on its feet of iron and clay and crushed them. ~ Daniel 2:32-34

The interpretation given explains how the fourth is a kingdom that is different from the former three.

40 Then there will be a fourth kingdom as strong as iron; inasmuch as iron crushes and shatters all things, so, like iron that breaks in pieces, it will crush and break all these in pieces. 41 In that you saw the feet and toes, partly of potter’s clay and partly of iron, it will be a divided kingdom; but it will have in it the toughness of iron, inasmuch as you saw the iron mixed with common clay. 42 As the toes of the feet were partly of iron and partly of pottery, so some of the kingdom will be strong and part of it will be brittle. 43 And in that you saw the iron mixed with common clay, they will combine with one another in the seed of men; but they will not adhere to one another, even as iron does not combine with pottery. 44 In the days of those kings the God of heaven will set up a kingdom which will never be destroyed, and that kingdom will not be left for another people; it will crush and put an end to all these kingdoms, but it will itself endure forever. 45 Inasmuch as you saw that a stone was cut out of the mountain without hands and that it crushed the iron, the bronze, the clay, the silver and the gold, the great God has made known to the king what will take place in the future; so the dream is true and its interpretation is trustworthy.” ~ Daniel 2:40-45

It's at the end of this distinctly different fourth kingdom that the Lord's own kingdom arrives! In the first decade of this millennium, some analysts were reporting that the span from 1991 to 1998 was notable as a season of prosperity, as something of a gold kingdom. This led me to consider the following seven year span from 1998-2005 in light of Joseph's prophetic season in Egypt, when seven years of plenty were followed by seven of a wasting famine. That, however, was not the pattern that identified the target Shemittah, which became painfully obvious in 2001 when the sign to the Bride in the 3rd year on the 13th day of the 1st month was not seen, but only its shadow. That Shemittah was to compare to the silver kingdom, to be followed by the bronze of 2005-2012. We are now in the iron kingdom, the 4th Shemittah, and the genetic mixing of the iron and clay is a hot topic!

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