Reading through the Bible together

Friday, December 12, 2014

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Jesus had just finished sharing the parable of God’s vineyard—a vineyard of sour tasting grapes. The 490 year cup of Israel’s probation, spoken of by the prophet Daniel, was almost full. All that Deity could do to call the people from danger to safety had been done.


Verse one of Mark 13 begins with Jesus and the disciples leaving the temple for the final time. Ellen White makes an interesting statement on this moment, “It is the mysterious farewell of the long-suffering love of the Deity” (TheDesire of Ages, page 620). We discover more depth to this thought when we read Mark’s counterpart to the story in Matthew 23:37. 


Just prior to Jesus walking out of the temple He addressed the nation’s leaders one final time and called them, “blind guides.” His next words were delivered with great remorse, “O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, the one killing the prophets and stoning those who are sent to her, how often would I have gathered your children together, even as a hen gathers her chicks under her wings, and you would not!”


Ellen White continues, “The Pharisees built the tombs of the prophets, and adorned their sepulchers, and said one to another, ‘If we had lived in the days of our fathers, we would not have united with them in shedding the blood of God's servants.’ At the same time they were planning to take the life of His Son” (TheDesire of Ages, page 618).


God had done all in His power to give warning after warning—all delivered through His prophets.  His greatest desire was to gather His people under His mighty protective care, keeping them safe from the Devil’s fierce attacks, but they would not listen nor would they follow.


II Chronicles 20:20 says, “Believe in Jehovah your God, and so you shall be established. Believe His prophets, and so you shall be blessed.” They did not heed the prophets so there could be no blessings; hence, their house had been left unto them desolate! The temple would be destroyed. The nation would lose all protection so freely offered by God. The fate of Israel spoken of by Jesus on that day would shortly come to pass. Israel’s leaders had not followed the Divine counsel and were ultimately led by Satan to kill the Son of God. 


Dear reader, how is it with you? Will you listen to the prophets and follow all they say? You can do so, by the power of the Holy Spirit—your eternal destiny depends upon it! God has sent us His prophets to lead us from danger to safety.  Will you listen and follow?


Jim Ayer
Vice President
Adventist World Radio
General Conference