All posts by Washington Bible Students Ecclesia

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Which place was Jesus staying before the baptism? 

Which place was Jesus staying before the baptism?  When Jesus went to the desert after his baptism, who did John and the disciples meet the next day, then on to the wedding at Cana, then to Capernaum?

Answer: Mark 1:9 tells us that Jesus came from Nazareth in Galilee.  Matthew 3:13 tells us that Jesus came from Galilee to the Jordan so John the Baptist could baptize him.

Regarding who John met the next day after Jesus’ baptism, you may be referring to the fact that the book of John appears to indicate that the next day after Jesus was baptized, John the Baptist identifies Jesus as “the Lamb of God” to some of John’s followers as Jesus was walking by (John 1:29-42).  What we must remember regarding the gospels is that they are four separate personal accounts of their experiences and events with Jesus.  Different gospels highlight different aspects important to the authors, while some aspects are duplicated. Gospel accounts are not fully chronological and in many cases, one must put all the accounts together using facts from each to create a chronological series of events.

Many have the perception that as soon as Jesus was baptized, he was immediately swept off to the desert to be tempted of Satan. The facts of the gospels indicate that there were several days before Jesus went to the desert. During that time, after his baptism, Jesus meets Andrew and Peter for the first time. They were interested in what John the Baptist was doing and witnessed him identifying Jesus as the Messiah. They followed and stayed with Jesus to get to know him more.  How long is not clear, but it was at least one day.  A point of fact is that Jesus did not call or invite them to follow him, they sought Jesus out.  At some point, Jesus and the two brothers part ways and Jesus goes into the desert for his 40 days of temptation by Satan (Matt. 4:1). We know from the scriptures that during that time, John the Baptist had been arrested by Herod and Jesus returns and begins his ministry (Matt. 4:12).

We then see Jesus begin calling his Apostles. Who does he call first? Probably the first two to show interest in him were Peter and Andrew (Matt. 4:18). Notice that he had already met them in John 1:35-42, but this time he encounters them while they are fishing in their boat and he, for the first time, calls them to follow him.  He then begins to call others like Philip and Nathanael (John 1:43-45).

What made the Israelites to go into exile?

Why the Israelites were into exile?

 

Answer:  The quick answer is “themselves.”  In Leviticus 26:1-16, God provided the Jews a preview of the blessings they would enjoy if they were faithful to Him and the Law.  Leviticus 26:14-44 likewise provided a preview of what would happen if God removed his favor from them due to disobedience.  God provided them with many blessings but they were unfaithful. The first wave of exiles occurred as a chastisement when the 10 tribe Kingdom of Israel (they had split away from the combined 12 tribe kingdom) strayed greatly from the Levitical Law and was conquered by the Assyrians and dispersed into many nations.  Then Judah (and Benjamin) went down the same evil path.  God had promised seven times (7 times 360 years of blessings or 2520 years) of blessings if they remained faithful to him.  However, in 607 BC (others say 587 BC), their prolonged lack of faithfulness resulted in a severe chastisement when Judah was conquered by Babylon and Jerusalem destroyed.  This started a time period of seven times of Gentile influence and control over the Jewish people which lasted 2520 years until 1914, when the “times of the Gentiles be fulfilled” (Luke 21:24).  The Jews lost all favor in 33 AD when Jesus declared their house was “left desolate” (Matt. 23:37-39).  We know that approximately 40 years later, the Jewish nation was completely destroyed by the Romans and they were dispersed throughout the world as slaves and exiles as Jesus said would happen.  In Leviticus 26:45, however, God reveals he will have mercy on the Jews and remember their covenant with them. We see that 1845 years after they were left desolate, God began to restore them in the land of promise in 1878 AD when the Jews were first allowed to return to Palestine, purchase land, and establish the first community Petah Tikva (Gate of Hope).  Then, 70 years later, as if to correspondingly undo the 70 years of desolation at the hands of Babylon at the beginning of the 2520 years, the Jewish nation of Israel was re-established in 1948.

What is eschatology?

What is eschatology?

Answer:  From Wikipedia we offer one definition. “Christian eschatology is a major branch of study within Christian theology dealing with the “last things  Eschatology, from two Greek words meaning “last” (ἔσχατος) and “study” (-λογία), is the study of ‘end things’, whether the end of an individual life, the end of the age, the end of the world or the nature of the Kingdom of God.  Broadly speaking, Christian eschatology is the study concerned with the ultimate destiny of the individual soul and the entire created order, based primarily upon biblical texts within the Old and New Testament.” The important thing to understand is to be diligent to study the word of God (2 Tim. 2:15), not theology, for even in Christendom, many have strayed from truth due to a dependence upon the musings and traditions of man (Matt. 15:8-9) rather than the fervent searching of the word of God (John 5:39, Acts 17:11).

How can we understand the following Scriptures – Matt: 27:45-46, Mark: 15:25, 33-34, and John 19:14?  

What time was Jesus Crucified? In the 3rd or in the 6th hour?

In order to place things chronologically, one must understand that not all the Gospel accounts are strictly chronological.  One must piece them together based on time clues provided in the verses. John was the last Gospel written and he is the most chronologically accurate, followed by Mark.  Matthew and Luke are more topical than chronologically accurate. John tends to cover mostly details that were not adequately addressed or were left out of the other Gospels. Some examples of this are the instances of Jesus going into the Temple, the cursing of the fig tree, and the anointing of Jesus by Mary.

On 31 March AD 33 (11 Nisan), Tuesday sometime in the morning, Jesus was going to the city of Jerusalem from Bethany. Mark tells us specifically of the time of the event (Mark 11:12-14) in the morning of Jesus’ triumphant entrance into the city, which happened on 10 Nisan. We assume that from the morning, Jesus spent considerable time in the temple this day teaching and healing. On the way from Bethany, Jesus curses the fig tree (Mark 11:12-14). It reminds him of the plight of Israel and he then weeps over the city (Luke 19:45-48).  He then goes on to cleanse the temple.  “When even was come, he went out of the city” (Mark 11:19).  Mark tells us, the next morning while on the way into the city from Bethany, Peter notices the cursed fig tree has withered (Mark 11:20-21). Mark provided chronological markers, whereas Matthew was merely recalling important events or concepts.

So why is all this discussion about days and times? Time markers in scripture are very important or you may just gloss over them and miss deep and profound truths. Also, to piece all the scriptural evidence together, you must have a basis. To understand all this, we have attached a timeline showing Jesus’ last day. The Hebrew day ran from 6 p.m. in the evening until 6 p.m. the next day. The beginning of the day was actually the night-time, with four watches of 3 hours each which took them from 6 p.m. to 6 a.m. The daylight hours were broken out into two mornings (6 a.m. to 9 a.m. and 9 a.m. to 12 p.m.).  At noon, the sun would reach its apex and then begin to even or set in the second half of the daylight hours. That part of the day was called the evening and it was divided into two evenings (noon to 3 p.m. and 3 p.m. to 6 p.m.). Then at 6 p.m., at evening, when the sun evened with the horizon, the Hebrew day would change again, starting a new day.

So let us practice using this basis. On Friday, 8 Nisan, was the Sabbath and Jesus could not travel.  At 6 p.m. on Saturday, the Sabbath ended and it became 9 Nisan.  He could now travel without violating the Law, but it was dark now. Jesus spent the night-time hours of 9 Nisan (first half of the day) at the home of Zacchaeus near Jericho on the way to Bethany (Luke 19:1-9).   The next morning, during the daylight hours of 9 Nisan, Jesus traveled to Bethany where he went to Lazarus’ house (possibly also known as Simon the Leper’s home). This would line up with John’s statement “six days before Passover”.  Passover was to start just after evening

(6 p.m.) on 15 Nisan, (Lev. 23:6, Exodus 12:17). 14 Nisan is the day of preparation and it is also the day Jesus died.  After you have a solid understanding of the Hebrew day, it becomes easier to specifically answer your question.

Look at the attached Hebrew Day Jesus Last Day. Note that based upon the Jewish Law, there were two daily sacrifices of a lamb, one at the third hour, and one at the ninth hour.  “Now this is that which thou shalt offer upon the altar; two lambs of the first year day by day continually. The one lamb thou shalt offer in the morning [9 a.m.] ….” (Exodus 29:38-9) Scripture tells us exactly when he was put on the cross, “And it was the third hour [9 a.m.], and they crucified him.” (Mark 15:25).  So Jesus was hung on the cross at the same time as the sacrifice of the first Lamb of the daily sacrifice.  The third hour of the daylight hours.

“Now from the sixth hour (12 p.m.) there was darkness over all the land unto the ninth hour

(3 p.m.).  “Now this is that which thou shalt offer upon the altar; two lambs of the first year day by day continually… the other lamb thou shalt offer at even (3 p.m.):” (Exodus 29:38-9)

At what time does Jesus say these words:  “My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?”  Before 9th hour or after 9th hour?

To answer your question, “And about the ninth hour Jesus cried with a loud voice, saying, Eli, Eli, lama sabachthani? that is to say, My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?” (Matt. 27:45-46, Mark 15:33-41, Luke 23:44-49).  “When Jesus therefore had received the vinegar, he said, ‘It is finished’: and he bowed his head, and gave up his spirit” (John 19:30, Matt. 27:50).  Scripture is specific here, Jesus hung on the cross for 6 hours. At the same time the Lamb of the second daily sacrifice was being killed at 3 p.m., Jesus also died, just at about 3 p.m. on 14 Nissan. Those are the facts we have. He as a perfect man, bore our sins in our place, he became the Lamb of God who died for the sins of the world, fulfilling the requirement of the sacrifice of the two lambs each day. But there is more.

Note that also between 3 p.m. and 6 p.m. on this day of preparation, 14 Nisan, the Jews would have also been killing a separate lamb, the Passover Lamb, to begin roasting it for Passover which would begin just after 6 p.m., the beginning of 15 Nisan. “In the fourteenth day of the first month at even is the LORD’S Passover” (Lev. 23:5),  “And they shall eat the flesh in that night, roast with fire, and unleavened bread; with bitter herbs they shall eat it” (Exodus 12:8).  “That night”, would be 15 Nisan, which was also the beginning of the Day of the Feast of Unleavened Bread, and also happened to be the start of a regular Jewish Sabbath day.

The Lamb of God, representing all three sacrifices of the lambs, were on one day.

 

What Does it Mean to Be a Sister In Christ?

Be a Sarah

Age does not matter

Trust and believe that all things are possible in God’s perfect timing and seasons.

Be a Rebekah

Never forget that the true beauty is within

Draw all your loved ones closer to God through your Christ-like character

Be a Rahab

Whatever the conditions or circumstances. Believe in the Power of God’s Word, give your best to Him and he will remember you and your household

Be a Ruth

Loyal in all your relationships, walk the extra mile, and don’t quit when it gets tough and someday you will see why it is worth the effort

Be a Hannah

Never cease to pray, it will never be in vain

Be a Abigail

Remember each decision can turn your life around for good or bad.  Be wise.

Be a Esther

Bold and courageous to stand for truth, voice your opinions, fight for the good of others even if it means to sacrifice yourself.  If God had put you in a position for a purpose. Never be afraid to heed your inner voice.

Be a Mary

Humble and submissive, you don’t have to do great things for God to use you.  You only need to obey.

Be an Elizabeth

Never doubt what God can do, He is the God of many miracles

Be a Mary Magdalene

Never let mistakes or judgment of other people stop you from experiencing the joy of God.

Be a Lydia

Let your homes be open, let your hands be generous, let your heart be big enough to help anyone in need.  Joy is the greatest when shared.

LIVING Hope and Joy

He is risen!

And he is satisfied, as he sees the unfolding of the Father’s plan, first in the development of the called-out ones, and then in the blessing of Israel and all the families of the earth.  Isaiah 53:11-12

Oh, what the faithfulness and resurrection of our Lord means to us and to every human life!

Our hope is LIVING, and the end result of our Blessing is sure!  This LIVING HOPE is similar to the joy set before him, Hebrews 12:2,  which is also the joy (and hope) set before us!  “…we may have strong encouragement, we who have fled for refuge in laying hold of the HOPE SET BEFORE US.   This hope we have as an anchor of the soul, a hope both sure and steadfast and one which enters within the veil, where Jesus has entered as a forerunner for us, having become a high priest forever according to the order of Melchizedek.”  Hebrews 6:18-20!!!

This LIVING HOPE will bear the fruit of the expectation, first in the heavenly inheritance according to His promise, part of the LIVING JOY set before us!

Until that final reward this LIVING HOPE is protected, by the process of our own protection through the power of God.  Another aspect of the LIVING JOY set before us is our present inheritance of protection and strength under Divine Loving Providence.

“Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ!  In his great mercy he has given us new birth (begettal) into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, and into an inheritance that can never perish, spoil or fade—kept in heaven for you, who through faith are shielded by God’s power until the coming of the salvation that is ready to be revealed in the last time.”  1 Peter 1:3-5

This LIVING HOPE provides the fiery trials that we experience for a short time, for the refinement of our faith.  The result will be glory to the Father and the Son. There is LIVING JOY in this process of refinement because it leads to our growth to their glory.

“In this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while you may have had to suffer grief in all kinds of trials.  These have come so that your faith—of greater worth than gold, which perishes even though refined by fire—may be proved genuine and may result in praise, glory and honor when Jesus Christ is revealed.”  1 Peter 1:6-7

This LIVING HOPE gives us a great depth of joy, another part of the hope and joy set before us, with the ultimate result of the deliverance of all in Adam.

“Though you have not seen him, you love him; and even though you do not see him now, you believe in him and are filled with an inexpressible and glorious joy, for you are receiving the goal of your faith, the salvation of souls.”  1 Peter 1:8-9

Hallelujah, what a Savior!

Is Joshua the high priest and Joshua who led the Israelites to subdue the promised land the same?

In  Zechariah 3:1:  (1)  Is Joshua the high priest and Joshua who led the Israelites to subdue the promised land the same?   (2)  How did the Joshua in Zechariah became the high priest to the Israelite people?  (3)  What is the name of the angel standing before the Lord in Zech 3:4?  (4)  So many years back Joshua (successor to Moses) died – how did Zechariah recognize Joshua?

The Joshua mentioned in Zechariah is not the Joshua, who led the Israelites into the promised land in the book of Joshua.  Joshua, the successor to Moses, was the son of Nun of the tribe of Ephraim (1 Chronicles 7:22, 26-27), grandson of Ammihud, great-grandson of Elishama.  As such, he was not a Levite and therefore could not have ever been a high priest.  Zechariah would have known Jewish history that would include Moses and Joshua.  However, recall from the Israelite leader Joshua to the time of Darius in which Zechariah wrote this (Zech. 1:1) was about 1000 years (from the division of the land, the time of the judges, the time of the Jewish kings, the 70 years of desolation after the Babylonian captivity, etc).  It would be utterly impossible for this to be that Joshua.

The verses in Zechariah Chapter 3 are meant to be an encouragement to Israel and are full of prophetic metaphor and symbolism and were evidently a vision. The name Joshua signifies “Savior” in Hebrew and in the Greek “Jesus.” Just as this Joshua is a high priest, he is a picture of the Church, the body of the spiritual high priest, Jesus. Thus the angel standing before the LORD is Jesus. Satan of course is the accuser, whereas Jesus is our advocate and is the head or high priest of the Church which is his body. Jerusalem in verse 2 is the Kingdom of God of fleshly Israel among mankind and specifically represents spiritual Israel, the Church (Rev 3:12, 21:2). Both God and Jesus has chosen it (the Church).

In this picture, Joshua represents the Church, the body of Christ. We know this because in the picture, God and Jesus (the angel) are present. The filthy rags show that Joshua represents a human class and is from the fallen race of Adam (Isaiah 64:6), whereas Jesus was not.  If Joshua represented only Jesus, he would not have worn rags as he was a perfect human (Psalms 37:37; Eph. 4:13), not of the seed of man, but blameless and without sin. Also, Satan would not be standing ready to accuse one who is without sin as he would have no basis in justice to do so.

In verse 4, the iniquity is taken away and the Church is clothed with new raiment, picturing the covering of our sins with the robe of Christ’s righteousness while in the flesh (Matt. 22:11).  It also reminds us that we will be given a resurrection to a new spirit nature. Joshua the high priest is also given a turban or mitre, like a crown representing victory, righteousness, and life

(1 Cor. 9:25, 2 Tim. 4:8, James 1:12, Rev. 2:10, Rev. 3:11).  If we are faithful as Joshua was told, we will judge angels and man (1 Cor. 6:2-3) as part of Christ’s body.

We are reminded that God has brought forth a branch from the line of David, our Lord and Savior Jesus (this part of the prophecy fulfilled).  Zechariah 3:9 reminds us that God lays a stone before us (Isa. 28:16).  Jesus is the stone the builders rejected (Matt. 21:42). The stone cut out without hands (Dan 2:34). This stone, Jesus, has seven eyes showing perfect divine wisdom and he shall oversee the engraving of his character and law upon the living stones of the Church, the Body of Christ in the Gospel age.  It will also be the case for all mankind in the one day (2 Pet. 3:8), the millennial day, the 1000 year Kingdom of God on earth.  In that day, everyone will be at peace and on earth they will be sustained by the restored and perfected Eden of earth (Micah 4:4).

As you can see, it is a prophecy and an encouragement to Israel, mankind, and the Church.

The Memorial 2020

“For as often as you eat this bread and drink this cup, you
proclaim the Lord’s death until He comes.”
-1 Co. 11:26

The date of the memorial

TUESDAY 7th April 2020 (14th Nisan) after 7:30 pm.
For more details on locations where the memorial will be held please contact us at washingtonbiblestudents@gmail.com.

We suggest following study materials:

2020 Memorial Study Topics
2020 Memorial Last Week
Lord’s Last Week
Lord’s Last Days [R4212]

The Passover of the New Creation

Are there specific scriptures that lead a person to vote for conservative candidates?

Question: Are there specific scriptures that lead a person to vote for conservative candidates?

I believe God hates the shedding of innocent blood and is for traditional marriage, but I would like to get scriptures for proof that we will be held accountable for the people we put in office.

Answer:
Your question involves many intersecting scriptural principles. The examples you give of marriage and shedding of innocent blood are very good scriptural principles that apply to “God’s people” and you should certainly consider them in your decision-making. We will all be judged (Rom. 2:2, 2 Cor. 5:10, Rom. 14:10-12) at the appointed time in God’s plan. The world is not under judgment at this time in the Gospel age (John 3:17, 2 Pet. 3:7); it will be judged during the Millennial Kingdom of Christ (John 5:28-29 – “judgment,” not “damnation” – the King James Bible is a poor translation, John 9:39,10:16). We as consecrated Christians ARE under judgment in this Gospel age (1 Pet. 4:17) for we seek a heavenly calling now while in the world and therefore have placed ourselves under development and review. We have given up the world, the things of the world, and all that the world holds dear. We should be dead to the world. Therefore, we are no longer of the world (John 17:14-16, Phil. 3:20-21). We are strangers, pilgrims (Heb 11:13, 1 Pet. 2:11)  and ambassadors (Eph. 6:20), all of which should not get caught up in the affairs of a country or the world to which they no longer belong, nor would they bother voting in it.

It is clear, until Christ fully establishes his kingdom on earth (Matt. 6:10), it is under the influence and control of the “prince of this world” (John 14:30, Eph. 2:2). We have evidence of this in that Jesus, when he fasted in the wilderness after his baptism, was tempted by Satan to be given the kingdoms and glory of this world (Matt. 4:8-9). Jesus refused because he was on a mission from his Father, likewise, we are on a mission form Jesus. Jesus also said of this Gospel age, “… if my kingship were of this world, my servants would fight…” (John 18:36).  God’s saints should rejoice in the promise that soon Christ will overthrow all present earthly governments, and on their ruins establish the long promised Kingdom of God (Dan. 2:44).” It is not for us to attempt to form what God has already begun in his work. We should not presume that our efforts will bring about God’s outcomes or his will (Isa 55:8-9). Nor should we unwittingly be voting for someone that God has not ordained or appointed lest we be fighting against God (Acts 5:38-39). God does not need our help.

On the contrary, it has been said, “He who votes in an election is morally bound to sustain the government he has participated in making — even to the giving of his life in its defense.”  If we vote, and the one we vote for were as you point out, shed innocent blood, will we not also be guilty of participating in the shedding of the blood?  Others have stated, “…soldiers of the cross are not to battle with carnal weapons, but have consecrated their lives even unto death in the service of another kingdom, whose interests are often against those of all the kingdoms of this world.”  When God ensures that the governments of the world are replaced by his kingdom, it will not be by a bloodless revolution at the ballot box, but by “…a time of trouble such as was not since there was a nation…” (Dan. 12:1) in which the Lord will dash the kingdoms of this world to pieces, as “…pottery is shivered before the blows of an iron rod…” (Rev 2:26-27).

A pastor wrote, “A mistake is made by Christians in trying to apply to the world rules and laws given only to the saints.  Our earth life should, like Jesus’ life, be spent more for others than for self – doing good to all men, as we have opportunity, especially to the household of faith.”  Each one has opportunity to carry out this principle of self sacrifice in the everyday affairs of life.  In our judgment, the common habit of speaking and thinking of the new nature as being an engrafting of a spiritual element into a natural man and of the blending in us of the human and divine natures, are serious and hurtful errors.

Taking a case in point, after Jesus ascended to heaven, the 11 apostles took it upon themselves to vote Matthias to replace Judas (Acts 1:26). Later on the road to Damascus, the glorified Jesus chose Saul to become Paul and serve him. Which did God ordain to be the replacement for Judas and the 12 apostles? How many Christians consider Matthias an apostle to this day?

We are to abide while in this world and to obey our leaders (Heb. 13:17, Titus 3:1) but we must still keep God’s principles.  “Render to Caesar the things which are Caesar’s, and unto God the things that are God’s.” (Matt. 22:21).  Though this may seem foreign to some, we are to be bond servants to Christ (1 Cor. 7:22).  In Christ, we have grace (John 1:17, Rom. 1:5), justification (Rom 3:24) and God sanctifies us and shapes us unto holiness if willing (John 17:16-17). Making decisions about worldly issues such as candidates for worldly office will not separate us from God (Rom 8:38-39).  At the same time, if a Christian chooses to get into the affairs of the world, we should make every decision striving to applying the principles of truth, where and when possible, as we will have to give an account of our actions (Rom 14:12).

If you let the world worry about its own affairs (Matt. 8:22) and focus your efforts on serving God, then you should not have any concerns. God will work out his will for us and for the world (2 Tim. 2:21, Rom. 8:28).

What happened to Dinah (Gen 30:21)?  

Question: What happened to Dinah (Gen 30:21)?  The last time we read about her is when Jacob and all his descendants enter Egypt, at the end of Genesis (Chapter 34).  When Exodus starts we just read about the 12 tribes of Israel.

Answer:  We are not told in the current accepted Christian texts of the Old Testament what became of Dinah, the daughter of Jacob and Leah, except that she went down into the land of Egypt with Jacob and her extended family (Gen 46:6).  In Jewish rabbinic literature, there are various surmising and lore, however we cannot validate any of it by scripture, so we do not ascribe to any of the conclusions.  There is an interesting article at https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dinah which may provide some insight.  We make no recommendations as we are not given that data in scripture.  What we do understand is the whole episode is a tarnish on righteousness and Godliness.  It shows events and outcomes that may occur when we allow worldly desires, corruption and political or economic gain to shape our ethics and principles.  One point is clear, Dinah and her family were more than likely absorbed into, and represented in one of the 12 tribes at the Exodus.