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The goat, the ram and the anti-Christ

The goat, the ram and the anti-Christ

Not all prophecy is difficult to understand. Sometimes the text tells us exactly what it means. That's what we have here in today's reading with the Ram and the goat. Take a look.

Daniel 8:Daniel's Vision of the Ram and the Goat

1 In the third year of the reign of King Belshazzar a vision appeared to me, Daniel, after that which appeared to me at the first.

2 And I saw in the vision; and when I saw, I was in Susa the capital, which is in the province of Elam. And I saw in the vision, and I was at the Ulai canal.

3 I raised my eyes and saw, and behold, a ram standing on the bank of the canal. It had two horns, and both horns were high, but one was higher than the other, and the higher one came up last.

4 I saw the ram charging westward and northward and southward. No beast could stand before him, and there was no one who could rescue from his power. He did as he pleased and became great.

5 As I was considering, behold, a male goat came from the west across the face of the whole earth, without touching the ground. And the goat had a conspicuous horn between his eyes.

6 He came to the ram with the two horns, which I had seen standing on the bank of the canal, and he ran at him in his powerful wrath.

7 I saw him come close to the ram, and he was enraged against him and struck the ram and broke his two horns. And the ram had no power to stand before him, but he cast him down to the ground and trampled on him. And there was no one who could rescue the ram from his power.

8 Then the goat became exceedingly great, but when he was strong, the great horn was broken, and instead of it there came up four conspicuous horns toward the four winds of heaven.

9 Out of one of them came a little horn, which grew exceedingly great toward the south, toward the east, and toward the glorious land.

10 It grew great, even to the host of heaven. And some of the host and some of the stars it threw down to the ground and trampled on them.

11 It became great, even as great as the Prince of the host. And the regular burnt offering was taken away from him, and the place of his sanctuary was overthrown.

12 And a host will be given over to it together with the regular burnt offering because of transgression, and it will throw truth to the ground, and it will act and prosper.

13 Then I heard a holy one speaking, and another holy one said to the one who spoke, "For how long is the vision concerning the regular burnt offering, the transgression that makes desolate, and the giving over of the sanctuary and host to be trampled underfoot?"

14 And he said to me, "For 2,300 evenings and mornings. Then the sanctuary shall be restored to its rightful state."

The Interpretation of the Vision

15 When I, Daniel, had seen the vision, I sought to understand it. And behold, there stood before me one having the appearance of a man.

16 And I heard a man's voice between the banks of the Ulai, and it called, "Gabriel, make this man understand the vision."

17 So he came near where I stood. And when he came, I was frightened and fell on my face. But he said to me, "Understand, O son of man, that the vision is for the time of the end."

18 And when he had spoken to me, I fell into a deep sleep with my face to the ground. But he touched me and made me stand up.

19 He said, "Behold, I will make known to you what shall be at the latter end of the indignation, for it refers to the appointed time of the end.

20 As for the ram that you saw with the two horns, these are the kings of Media and Persia.

21 And the goat is the king of Greece. And the great horn between his eyes is the first king.

22 As for the horn that was broken, in place of which four others arose, four kingdoms shall arise from his nation, but not with his power.

23 And at the latter end of their kingdom, when the transgressors have reached their limit, a king of bold face, one who understands riddles, shall arise.

24 His power shall be great---but not by his own power; and he shall cause fearful destruction and shall succeed in what he does, and destroy mighty men and the people who are the saints.

25 By his cunning he shall make deceit prosper under his hand, and in his own mind he shall become great. Without warning he shall destroy many. And he shall even rise up against the Prince of princes, and he shall be broken---but by no human hand.

26 The vision of the evenings and the mornings that has been told is true, but seal up the vision, for it refers to many days from now."

27 And I, Daniel, was overcome and lay sick for some days. Then I rose and went about the king's business, but I was appalled by the vision and did not understand it.

Daniel 9:Daniel's Prayer for His People

1 In the first year of Darius the son of Ahasuerus, by descent a Mede, who was made king over the realm of the Chaldeans---

2 in the first year of his reign, I, Daniel, perceived in the books the number of years that, according to the word of the LORD to Jeremiah the prophet, must pass before the end of the desolations of Jerusalem, namely, seventy years.

3 Then I turned my face to the Lord God, seeking him by prayer and pleas for mercy with fasting and sackcloth and ashes.

4 I prayed to the LORD my God and made confession, saying, "O Lord, the great and awesome God, who keeps covenant and steadfast love with those who love him and keep his commandments,

5 we have sinned and done wrong and acted wickedly and rebelled, turning aside from your commandments and rules.

6 We have not listened to your servants the prophets, who spoke in your name to our kings, our princes, and our fathers, and to all the people of the land.

7 To you, O Lord, belongs righteousness, but to us open shame, as at this day, to the men of Judah, to the inhabitants of Jerusalem, and to all Israel, those who are near and those who are far away, in all the lands to which you have driven them, because of the treachery that they have committed against you.

8 To us, O LORD, belongs open shame, to our kings, to our princes, and to our fathers, because we have sinned against you.

9 To the Lord our God belong mercy and forgiveness, for we have rebelled against him

10 and have not obeyed the voice of the LORD our God by walking in his laws, which he set before us by his servants the prophets.

11 All Israel has transgressed your law and turned aside, refusing to obey your voice. And the curse and oath that are written in the Law of Moses the servant of God have been poured out upon us, because we have sinned against him.

12 He has confirmed his words, which he spoke against us and against our rulers who ruled us, by bringing upon us a great calamity. For under the whole heaven there has not been done anything like what has been done against Jerusalem.

13 As it is written in the Law of Moses, all this calamity has come upon us; yet we have not entreated the favour of the LORD our God, turning from our iniquities and gaining insight by your truth.

14 Therefore the LORD has kept ready the calamity and has brought it upon us, for the LORD our God is righteous in all the works that he has done, and we have not obeyed his voice.

15 And now, O Lord our God, who brought your people out of the land of Egypt with a mighty hand, and have made a name for yourself, as at this day, we have sinned, we have done wickedly.

16 "O Lord, according to all your righteous acts, let your anger and your wrath turn away from your city Jerusalem, your holy hill, because for our sins, and for the iniquities of our fathers, Jerusalem and your people have become a byword among all who are around us.

17 Now therefore, O our God, listen to the prayer of your servant and to his pleas for mercy, and for your own sake, O Lord, make your face to shine upon your sanctuary, which is desolate.

18 O my God, incline your ear and hear. Open your eyes and see our desolations, and the city that is called by your name. For we do not present our pleas before you because of our righteousness, but because of your great mercy.

19 O Lord, hear; O Lord, forgive. O Lord, pay attention and act. Delay not, for your own sake, O my God, because your city and your people are called by your name."

Gabriel Brings an Answer

20 While I was speaking and praying, confessing my sin and the sin of my people Israel, and presenting my plea before the LORD my God for the holy hill of my God,

21 while I was speaking in prayer, the man Gabriel, whom I had seen in the vision at the first, came to me in swift flight at the time of the evening sacrifice.

22 He made me understand, speaking with me and saying, "O Daniel, I have now come out to give you insight and understanding.

23 At the beginning of your pleas for mercy a word went out, and I have come to tell it to you, for you are greatly loved. Therefore consider the word and understand the vision.

The Seventy Weeks

24 "Seventy weeks are decreed about your people and your holy city, to finish the transgression, to put an end to sin, and to atone for iniquity, to bring in everlasting righteousness, to seal both vision and prophet, and to anoint a most holy place.

25 Know therefore and understand that from the going out of the word to restore and build Jerusalem to the coming of an anointed one, a prince, there shall be seven weeks. Then for sixty-two weeks it shall be built again with squares and moat, but in a troubled time.

26 And after the sixty-two weeks, an anointed one shall be cut off and shall have nothing. And the people of the prince who is to come shall destroy the city and the sanctuary. Its end shall come with a flood, and to the end there shall be war. Desolations are decreed.

27 And he shall make a strong covenant with many for one week, and for half of the week he shall put an end to sacrifice and offering. And on the wing of abominations shall come one who makes desolate, until the decreed end is poured out on the desolator."

Things to think about…

1.Daniel 8 is fairly self-explanatory. It is all about the Medo-Persian empire being overtaken by the Greeks under Alexander the Great. He is the great horn. He was broken off in his strength and his kingdom given to his 4 generals (the 4 conspicuous horns, vs 8). The greatest general was Ptolemy (out of the 4 little horns he became great) . His kingdom grew strong until Rome conquered him. I believe Dan 9:23-25 refers to Herod who tried to rise against the Prince of princes, vs 25. He tried to kill Jesus as a baby and was broken, but not by a human hand – he died of an horrific intestinal condition that made him physically repulsive to everyone. Some say Daniel was written after all this occurred because his prophecies were so accurate. That was until they found the dead sea scrolls which pointed to an earlier date. There is no doubt Daniel was writing in the 500's BC while Alexander the Great came two centuries later.

2.Note that Daniel 8 refers also to the future from where we stand. Dan 8:23-27 refers to one who will rise up against the Prince of princes. This will be thew anti-Christ speaking against Christians and Jews. But he will understand riddles – he will understand things about himself and others, yet he will continue, knowing his season will be short.

3.In Dan 9, Daniel knows the time of the Jewish exile in Babylon is up. 70 years have passed, Dan 9:1. He is writing around 536BC. Yet he himself repents of Israel's sins, Dan 9:2-19. Why does he do this? He did not rebel against the Lord and incur God's wrath? Do you think it is ever appropriate that we humble ourselves and repent of the sins of our countrymen – even where we have not been directly involved. What about the atrocities committed against aboriginals. Should we repent even though we were not directly involved? Certainly some of us are representatives of those who did commit them. Our Lord's blessing on our ministries as seen in the scriptures is intimately connected with the land, past atrocities and the hypocrisy or otherwise of acknowledging those past atrocities. A number of months ago the elders of CBC acknowledged past atrocities and asked for the forgiveness from God and representatives of the Yugarra people. We prayed with them and asked for Christ's blessing over our land.

4.What do you make of these 70 weeks in Dan 10:24-27? Christ is clearly the anointed One who was cut off. This can be dated at 33AD. Do the other 8 weeks finish at Jerusalem's destruction in 70AD, or do they start again when there is a covenant with the antichrist. Is this the Desolator that Jesus refers to in Matt 24. Remember scripture interprets scripture, that's why we have the book of Daniel sandwiched between our readings of the book of Revealtion. Join Andrew Otte this Sunday night as he tackles these topics.

5.Jerusalem is indeed being rebuilt in troubled times, Dan 9:25. After this period there the anointed one will be cut off, Christ. But the prince to come, the anti-Christ, Dan 9:26 will make war in Jerusalem and shall destroy the sanctuary (re-built temple). This anti-Christ prince will make a covenant with the Jews for 1 week (7 years). 3 and a half years in will break the covenant, putting an end to Jewish sacrifice and offering. After another 3 and a half years his desolation will come by Christ and His return. During this season many Jews will turn to Christ during this tribulation period accepting Him as Yeshua the Messiah.

Vision Point

CBC's Vision :- To be a growing biblical church community, significantly influencing our city and beyond, through intentional outreach, fulfilling our mission.

The reading was from Rev 7. The sermon was called "Every tribe, nation and language"

1.How do you understand the tribulation period? Do you think Christians will be raptured before, during or after the tribulation?

2.Andrew Otte mentioned 6 "P's" in his sermon. Can you remember some of them?

3.Andrew also mentioned the "until's". Do you remember what they refer to?

4.What is the evidence of someone who is saved in Christ.


Prayer Points

1.Pray for continued follow up rain

2.Pray for those who have recently come to CBC that they settle into the fellowship.

3.Pray for our help and response to Stanthorpe community.

4.Ministries this term 4 – PlayPatch, Kids@Church, Recharge youth.

5.Pastor Andrew Otte as he preaches this Sunday night on Rev 16-18.

6.More Sunday school and RI teachers

7.Our outreach initiatives as well as the Axiom podcast.

8.Sunday's messages. "The making of a King – Daniel 4"– "The bowls, the beast and Babylon" Rev 16-18 Andrew Otte – Sunday night.

9.Finish "Bean Redeemed" coffee shop and podcast area.

10.Church finances to meet our expenses.

11.Our City and Country – Pray for revival over our city and the leadership of our country.

12.Ray of Hope Trivia night – this Saturday 6pm and Members meeting 3rd Nov. Please RSVP – link in announcements section.


Praise Points.

1.Praise the Lord for more rain last night.

2.Andrew Otte's preaching ministry on Sunday.

3.Praise the Lord for rain that has fallen already in Qld and NSW.

4.More new people on Sunday – Praise the Lord.

5.Those who serve on our worship teams and ministry teams.

6.Unity, peace and Christ's love over our church.

7.A number considering baptism.


Announcements

1.Willey group - Hosting morning tea on Sunday morning.

2.Playpatch – Returns this Friday morning.

3.Recharge Youth – Friday night 7pm – High Schoolers.

4.Kids at Church – Primary school aged children Sunday mornings.

5.Andrew Otte preaching 13th Oct AM and 20th Oct PM.

6.Ray of Hope orphanage trivia night dinner to raise money for the orphanage, this Saturday 19th Oct 6pm. Please RSVP on facebook - https://www.facebook.com/events/2197393253897185/

7.Members Meeting 3rd November after morning service.


This month's catechism question...

Q. 5. How many petitions are there in The Lord's Prayer?
A. Six.


"Call to me and I will answer you, and will tell you great and hidden things that you have not known" Jer 33:3

Pastor Jay

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