Pastor Josh does not want anyone to die, nor is he advocating actual stoning. That is both dishonest and unfaithful to God and His word. There are real people that advocate killing infidels and using real stones to kill sexually immoral people, namely Muslims. By using this passage to slander Pastor Josh, you belittle the real evil that Jesus was addressing and the real evil that is happening today on the other side of the world.
Shame on you. I pray that Josh takes time to pray and seeks Gods wisdom,and refrains from writing ignorant posts. Beth Moore us a false teacher. She makes her own interpretations up about what verses mean as she flails around on stage acting like a stand-up comedian. She has also crossed the line giving so-called unbiblical prophesies. She is a danger to women. Men taking her classes isnt really her fault now is it?!
With a few exceptions some women philosophers , advanced education was a male domain. Because most people in Mediterranean antiquity were functionally illiterate, those who could read and speak well generally assumed teaching roles, and—with rare exceptions—these were men. Paul commended the ministry of a woman who brought his letter to the Roman Christians Romans ,2. Phoebe was not the only influential woman in the church.
Special Assembly of the Synod of Bishops for the Pan-Amazon Region - 6 to 27 October
Whereas Paul greeted about twice as many men as women in Romans 16, he commended the ministries of about twice as many women as men in that list. While passages such as these establish Paul among the more progressive writers of his era, the primary controversy today rages around other passages in which Paul seemed to oppose women in ministry.
Before turning there, we must examine one passage where Paul clearly addressed a local cultural situation. I am disgusted by whatever generalization you have put on Beth Moore or Christine Caine or Joyce Meyer or any other woman in the church who feels called to speak up. Women can LEAD. God is proud of his daughters. Amen, sister! This article is so outside the lines of the life of Christ. He must be a trump supporter.
How Christians cannot create space for equality is reprehensible. I pray that this thinking becomes a thing of the past so that the gospel will move forward in life redeeming ways. Clinton, ROFL. If the write of the article is a Trump supporter then what would make me since I am not even remotely concerned about Amedica as it is not my country and the outcome of your elecotoral results would not impact my personal life or living standards; neither I am an Male Chauvinist MCP who shuns women down or beat them up.
Kindly do not assume political alliance based on their Biblical viewpoint that is more in the line of calling spade a spade. Your Truly. Completely agree. Also if you look at the context in which Paul was speaking it was a cultural issue. They are freeing and drenched in the open love of Jesus. Good post! If God had no call on Joyce Meyers life she would not be so heavily gifted! Same with all of them! In fact God will judge u for not using your gift! I noticed he is against charismatics! That is case closed he is not grounded in the word…read the book of acts! That is charismatic Christianity in action!
A lot of people think that one scripture cancels out another. Instead, we need to compare scripture with scripture and rightly divide the word. But it has to mean something! So what does it mean, exactly? Rather than trying to cancel it out with other verses, why not take some time to tell us what you think Paul means in this passage? I sometimes listen to Beth Moore in the distance.
That is, I listen to her on the radio while washing clothes, vacuuming, etc. Jonie, nope. But kindly back check whatever you hear. Paul commended them Bereans because they did not believe him point blank but went to the scripture and checked whatever Paul has preached. It applies to whoever we are listening. You will know then for sure if listening to Beth Moore is profitable for you or not. Just saying.. Thank you for this article it makes me love Beth all the more as you are narrow minded and unloving in this article.
Few are addressing this particular passage in their defense of lady preachers. I am personally interested in anyone explaining to me why Paul would forbid this if the culture of his time truly supported women in leadership…which is what everyone seems to be claiming. Clearly, using the argument of Paul forbidding women preacher because no one would accept women in a leadership role, is contradicted by what all the pro lady preacher crowd is saying about the early church accepting women in leadership. I ask in response, why are you even turning to this scripture when referring to a woman who is a teacher of other women.
All her books speak to the reader assuming the reader is feminine. Beth Moore never went to seminary.
The Holy City: The New Jerusalem - John Bunyan
Because seminary is not where Baptist girls are supposed to go. Women are luck that Beth Moore studies scriptures as intently as she does. You mentioned if your heart is telling you something is wrong, then it usually is. Actually, Jeremiah 17 tells us that the heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked. We need the word of God, not a feeling we have, to confirm the truth we believe. You need to read what the Bible has to say on this matter, and not go by your feelings. Please give your biblical justification for the art and science of hermenuetics.
What does this device of man have to do with faith? Acts How do those trained in science and observation, walk by faith, but sight, when we are not to walk by sight?
In Acts 14 Paul rips his clothes to shreds when named in honor of this false god for the message he delivered. Why do we yet strive to be able ministers of the letter and not the Spirit 2 Cor. One thing I have learned is that no one not even Paster. My Grandmother was my first preacher.
Women were preachers. Who are you to Judge God and who he works through.. There is a vs that says in those days we will be has the angels neither male or few male. Paul commends the Bereans for being skeptical of his message. Should we not follow the same example for anyone who comes into our sphere?
This point has been hammered enough in this thread. If it is wrong to judge, then stop judging. You are taking that verse out of context. We are all equal in Christ, but we all have different roles. You will never sing bass, and I will not have babies. The real problem here goes back to Genesis …. God was saying that Eve because she was found in the transgression……. Bingo… her in lies the problem and has always been the problem.
Amazonia: New Paths for the Church and for an Integral Ecology
I am so glad there is no marriage in Heaven….. Reading these comments is exactly why people struggle to understand Christianity. Would Jesus Christ judge a woman vs a man like this? It is so strange to see Beth and her ministry so judged based on scripture in Timothy. Shame on the article coming against 2 very anointed women of God. You are the one that has taken the scriptures out of context.
In Christ there is neither male nor female. How many of Gods people will be poisoned by your opinion. Amen I hope you will repent and ask God to deliver you from a Pharisee spirit you have crucified Gods daughters. Appalled that ignorance of the scripture and not sound doctrine have lead you to write what you wrote. The writer of this article sounds like a stuffed shirt who has misinterpreted scripture himself.
Know them by their fruit. Beth Moore and Joyce Meyer are more thorough than many men who teach from the scriptures. I appreciate your concerns and efforts. Please keep it up! To be forewarned is to be forearmed, spiritually! We have a duty to be the watchmen in Ezekiel 3 and 33 to look out for false doctrines and anything that draws souls away from the simplicity that is in Christ. I am very encouraged by your example.
Thank you Michelle! Paul had MANY women on his ministry team and left many women behind to start home churches. Women always preached in the churches, always. Paul often encouraged it. In fact in 1 cor , Paul admonishes the Corinthian church to stifling a woman from preaching but instead encourages the church to allow her to speak. Timothy was having problems with these women snubbing him and working on their outer appearance as opposed to doing good works. He will one day give an account to God over all of this.
So yes, you can teach outside the church walls and at conferences. The article is weak. No references or teaching anything about the original language. Head, authority, submit, have often been misinterpreted from the original greek for purposes of power and control. Beth is clearly ordained of God. Not my personal liking, but she has been called to preach. Kim, Michelle is not wrong and she most certainly knows scripture.
Paul made it very clear that women are not to teach over men. And if they desire to learn anything, let them ask their own husbands at home; for it is improper [disgraceful] for a woman to speak in church. But I do not allow a woman to teach or exercise authority over a man, but to remain quiet. Beth Moore tells a lot of blah-blah me stories, with some Scripture verses thrown in.
Josh, thanks for your succinct list of the main problems with teachers like Beth Moore. Spot on! These pide pipers are twisting the word of God by not reading it in its full context. I can see many people oppose this article.
They are the weak Christians voting for Hillary Clinton. I am sure they have not even recognized the evil Obama has done, but that pales in comparison to what Clinton is about to do. I have attended several teachings of Beth Moore. I personally love what she has to say. God talks to me on a regular basis too. I am not catholic… I am a daughter of my king! The king of kings and the Lord of Lords… and yes, my Father talks to me because He loves me and we have a relationship together.
The God I serve is a God of Love and not dictatorship. Josh you contradicted yourself in the same message… you said that the apostles died and so did the miracles… and then later you said that the Word of God was true. The first 12 apostles died but there are modern day apostles and there are still many miracles today. You need to spend some alone time with God and practice the art of humility along with a whole lot less self-righteousness.
On a witch hunt now are we? Let me lead the way!! Militant feminism has and is creeping into the churches. The apostate church as described by Paul in II Timothy embrace her heresies. The rise of a dark, subtle sensual spirit of antichrist blended with Babylonian charm is sweeping over our land like a storm. This fits perfectly with the pattern of the rise of the LGBT occult. The stage for the antichrist to soon emerge is rapidly being set up with hurling velocity.
Notice this: Moore.. If they were as spiritually astute as they profess they would be at home serving their kids and loving their husbands. Are you serious? You sound like one of those male chauvinists. The preferences of Paul are not to be taken literally. He is writing from a male Jewish perspective. I am not saying she is completely right but you need to watch how you treat women. Timothy must have had problems with them and the ladies basically told Timothy to Buzz off.
- Theres Not a Grove?
- The Budget Book for Film and Television, Second Edition.
- City Guide Rom.
- Why Your Pastor Should Say "No More to Beth Moore".
Paul always encouraged women to preach as many of them had home churches as seen in a lot of his letters. Woman do not want to be put in the back of the church, not allowed to speak, lets just turn the universe back years. He plainly stated that though he believes he speaks with the mind of God, he was still a man and therefore capable of mistake. Jesus had many women within His inner circle. Mary Magdalene, an independently wealthy, unmarried from what we can tell from scripture was only one of them.
Jesus appeared first to a woman, not by mere coincidence. All i here here is jealousy. This Sounds of the preist who worked to get Jeasus crusified. How sad you are that you harp about men , i seen none should she eject any that show up? I find it ironic that we hold Lottie Moon up for the saint that she was and tell how she led men and women in China to Christ, and that was OK because she was called a missionary. But here in the states women cannot do that.
I think you make a good point, Peggy. Clearly, God utilized Lottie Moon in great ways to His glory. Rather, he stated that he does not allow women to exercise authority over men and the context of that prohibition is in the church. He states that women should remain quiet, and the context of that is in church gatherings. But she spent most of her time and efforts evangelizing women and children. But each has his own gift from God, one of one kind and one of another. For it is better to marry than to burn with passion. Lottie Moon seems to be a tremendous example of what is possible when God works through a single believing woman.
My pastor once said, when listening to ANY human teaching, eat the meat and spit out the bones. The primary command of Jesus Himself? My heart breaks when I read articles like this one. May God have mercy on your soul! Randy, you are correct. This is a big issue, that women bring their feminist views and try to alter scripture to excuse their sin. Like they know what it means more than God does!
Many have their idols that they are unwilling to let go of, believing that they are teaching rightly the word of God without searching scripture to see if what they teach are true. No discernment. It is knowing the difference between right and almost right. Since they hear Beth Moore teach some truth, her avid fans assume all truth comes out of her mouth. Men are to be over their wives, not the other way around. Same goes for teaching, women do not teach over men.
Good luck with that. Have you heard her teach? What specifically have you heard her say that was flat out a lie and unbiblical? But sadly this article is false too. Hey scripture says greet each with a holy kiss oh my why are you not doing that Also say how terrible it is for a women not to wear head covering. Context matter most. The article even hypocrite as it say Moore Faulty Biblical Hermeneutics. You the writter just as faulty. Hello Peter daughter were prophet to the church. Judge over Israel was a woman. Romans guess what a women was a apostle. The name is a female name.
So many cannot read the bible. So things are custom of the day not a absolute for all time. Washing feet was the custom does ever church do that today? Sadly women run to Meyers and other false women without any discernment at all. Paula White another false women love. You cannot be serious????
I cannot believe that you are believing what you are even saying… Jezebel spirit?!?! At home serving their kids and husbands? You clearly have studied Revelation…sadly, the ones arguing against this article have not. Even setting aside the argument regarding women teaching men, the rest of this critique of Beth Moore is spot on!
A significant reason is because of secular humanism tied to feminism creeping into Biblical interpretation, and thus misinterpretation of scripture to fit secular society falsely empowers women in the church to the point that they overstep traditional Biblical boundaries, and intimidate and virtue signal men, to the point where men stop attending due to the false doctrine that is turning churches lukewarm, apostate, and ultra-feminine.
Jesus help these men not be so obtuse when it comes to interpreting scriptural Context and give the rest of us credit for knowing the scriptures as well as they do and have done our own studies and conclude just as intelligently but differently than they. Thank you for this, pastor. This is discernment done correctly. Are you kidding? Where are the men? There are far more women in the church then men. When did you ever serve in the nursery or bring food when needed or sing in the choir or teach a bible study. Most men sit at home while the wives go to church and take the kids.
When is the last time you invited someone to church or lead someone to Christ? Barbara, none of that matters. As Justin Peters one of the most humble men I have ever met said, she is one of the most dangerous women in evangelicalism today. She is so skilled at twisting the Scripture that she makes it virtually unnoticeable by the less discerning.
Maybe the problem is the lack of male leadership which some of the comments here seem to leave a sense of threatened men. As you know, prophesy is a word from God. Why do people keep mentioning Deborah? Deborah was a judge. It says absolutely nothing about Deborah teaching the Word or being in authority over men or anyone in spiritual areas. And in Judges 5 she sings a song of praise to God for what He had done.
Just read Judges chapters 4 and 5, friends. Barbara Your forgetting the important part here. This is a commandment from the Lord. And if you read in the bible and look up 1st Timothy 2 you will plainly see what it indicates that God himself said those words. And are you better than God huh?? If you are denying God. You need a wake-up call. God specified why he wanted man as a prophet. God is perfect. Just remember that. Quit being a racist person. And think women rule everything. Because they sure do not.
If you are not saved. You would not understand the ways of the Lord. As God says that in the bible also. The loss are like the blind leading the blind. They know not the lord and his ways. You might do things in Church. But your a lost soul who truly does not understand the Lord. I will pray for you. One tip bit here. I do a lot for the church. And I also do bible study. So I am well knowledgeable in the words of the Lord. And I do read daily the bible as well.
Do you??? Doug — Deborah WAS a prophetess. Further, Paul mentions women using the gift of prophecy in 1 Cor I have no problem with good male leadership. Just wish I could see more of it once in a while. Barbara, I sympathize with your frustration. Read my comment above. Satan is attacking not only the American church, but America as well. There are positive movements among men in Christ; Iron Sharpens Iron is one of them. I agree with you. Her ministry comes from the Bible. I am the shepherd of my little home flock and that being said, I become a servant to my lovely wife and beautiful daughter leading them by example as I follow Christ.
They would have it no other way. We, as a family, seek only to Glorify God and enjoy Him forever. Read more Scriptures and there is plenty of evidence of women ministering and even leading. I have seen some very powerful and anointed female ministers, who are called of God and not to the egocentric whims of men. Muslim, gypsy to name a few, are cultures who also believe women are not equals or viable and merely there to facilitate men. When a man loves his wife as how his own flesh would like to be treated and cares for her as Christ gave His life for the church, then a marriage can be filled with love and respect.
Unfortunately, where women are regarded as second rate citizens, the country is economically weak and a place where none care to immigrate. Dewy Beezly, Gal is referring to salvation. Meaning there are no social, economic, or gender barriers when it come to receiving Christ. Many people use that scripture in error.
Men and women are equal, but have different roles. We see this in marriage and the church, institutions created by God. For they are not permitted to speak, but should be in submission, as the Law also says. If there is anything they desire to learn, let them ask their husbands at home. For it is shameful for a woman to speak in church. Or was it from you that the word of God came? Or are you the only ones it has reached?
You are referring to a verse that is about the elect as a whole. A elder must be someone who has one wife. If so, why all the legalism when it comes to the role of women in the church while turning a blind eye to head coverings, fine jewelry, and expensive clothing? And what do you make of Paul permitting women to prophesy i. And why would God have blessed Deborah of the Old Testament — knowing she exercised authority over men as judge and prophetess?
You speak of scriptural context — can we not consider that Paul was addressing the very specific needs of the early church? You tell us to read Judges, right? Amen to that , and Josh picking out a couple scriptures should check himself for Pharisee attitude. The Spirit speaks through all believers and their anatomy has nothing to do with it!! Thank you, Dewy. Finally someone who speaks from well studied and rightly divided Truth.
The Holy Father
If only Craig and Josh were brave enough to accept the challenge of opening their minds to deeper study and scriptural exegesis. They are blinded to the fact that the Jezebel spirit they are projecting onto women, they are actually embodying in male form. I wish these men and some women would get about the business of winning souls to Christ instead of foolish arguments that stem from uninformed and unlearned teachings. Peace to all and a very Happy New Year. Wild west of Christianity? Have you witnessed a Benny Hinn crusade lately?
Every kind of disorder in those meetings. And men leading the way. He is a heretic of the highest order. Wave his hand and people fall in thier seats. Yes I agree with you on this man. Yes, Tracy and James…. Benny Hinn scares me. Very true. Women tend to let their emotions get in the way.
James : Beware of the people of the evangelist on TV or in person. If you remember God says beware of false prophets pretending to be something they are not. There are a lot of people in this world. They do this to make the money and are like wolves in sheep clothing. Just saying here. Thank you, thank you, for this article! This is in my church and am trying to get the word out about all these false teachers. So hard to get people to listen. I think I agree with Rick. Why not publish an article about what women can do as they serve in the church.
The article made me feel like I should do nothing; however, I know there are women in the bible who did great things. Look at Esther for one. What is your point? Jesus redeemed Mary Magdalene cleansed her of demon possession after which she was among the women along with Mary the Mother of Jesus and others who followed Him, and she was the one at the tomb that He appeared to first after His resurrection, so she ran to let the others know. How does that relate to this? I do not understand how you could be left with that feeling.
The Bible lays out a beautiful calling on women. If women want to know how to serve in the church, they should try opening their Bibles. Barbara: if you read more about the crucified of God on the cross. As when one stood by asking and telling God. Look over yonder is your mother and brothers. And instead they should be praying to God directly. And the Catholic people go constantly to denounce their sins. And what does God say about that huh? He teaches us not to continue to do continuing sins of the same sins over and over again.
It is not about equal rights or about What Men can do Women can do the same. Ilan Arad. Ilan Sharif. Isaac Shweky. Israel Antiquities Authority. James McDonald. Jerzy Strzelecki. Joe Freeman. Kasper Nowak. Little Savage. Magdala Project. Marcin Monko. Marie-Armelle Beaulieu. Nazareth Cultural and Tourist Information Association. Nir Ohad. Oregon State University Archives. Sergey Serous. Shmuel Browns. Stanislao Lee.
Tasher Bahoo. Tom Powers. Vassia Atanassova. Yair Haklai. Yehudit Garinkol. Allenby capture Palestine from Ottoman Turks. The founding patriarch of the Israelites , Ishmaelites , Midianites and Edomite peoples, he is considered father of the three monotheistic faiths tied to the Holy Land today — Judaism, Christianity and Islam. Here Abraham entered into a covenant: He would recognise Yahweh as his God, and in return he would be blessed with numerous offspring and the land would belong to his descendants.
The fifth book of the New Testament, it is traditionally ascribed to Luke the evangelist and is a sequel to his Gospel. The announcement by the archangel Gabriel to the Virgin Mary that she would become the mother of the Son of God, who would be named Jesus. In particular, the Apocrypha refers to the books from the Greek translation of the Old Testament that are included in the Roman Catholic and Eastern Orthodox Bibles, but not in the Jewish or Protestant Bibles although they were originally included in the King James Version.
In general, the term apocryphal is applied to any scriptural text that is excluded from a Bible. Since different denominations differ on what their Bible contains, there are different versions of the Apocrypha. The word is also applied to texts of uncertain authenticity, or that may be fictional or spurious.
The apostle Peter, by Giuseppe Nogari, Wikimedia. A language related to Hebrew and Arabic, and probably the mother tongue of Jesus. It was the language most people spoke in the villages and towns of Palestine and is the main language of the Jewish Talmud. Now it is the first language of scattered communities in several countries of the Middle East, and the language of worship in the Syriac Orthodox Church.
The scientific study of ancient civilisations, usually by excavating historical or sacred sites. It involves the discovery and interpretation of material remains left behind by those who lived there long ago. In the Holy Land it helps to re-create the environment and culture in which biblical events occurred. The first archaeological excavations in the Holy Land took place at Nineveh in A wooden box, covered with gold, containing the stone tablets inscribed with the Ten Commandments.
Carried by the Israelites on their Exodus journey through the desert, it represented the presence of God among his people and was the most sacred religious symbol of the Hebrew people. A place name given in Revelation as the location of the final battle in which good will triumph over evil. The mount of Megiddo is near the modern settlement of Megiddo, in northern Israel, situated at a strategic crossroads in the Jezreel valley and at the foot of the Carmel mountain range. The departure of Jesus from earth to heaven, 40 days after his Resurrection.
Tradition locates the event on the top of the Mount of Olives in Jerusalem, at a place now marked by the Dome of the Ascension. Its world headquarters is on Mount Carmel in Haifa. An Italian architect who designed several of the most striking churches and sanctuaries in the Holy Land. A prayerful man, he lived a humble life and meditated at length on the Gospels before undertaking any design. He always tried to make his buildings express the events they commemorated. A bas-relief of the architect is set into a wall outside the Church of the Transfiguration on Mount Tabor.
A rectangular building divided by a central nave and side aisles, usually formed by rows of columns. Such public buildings in Rome served as centres of justice or administration. Architects adapted this form for Christian churches from the fourth century AD. The reference year is the birth of Christ but there is no year 0, so 1 BC is immediately followed by AD 1. Dionysius established what he thought was the year of the birth of Jesus, but he was out by at least four years.
Scholars now believe that Jesus was born between 4 and 7 BC. Desert-dwelling and Arabic-speaking nomads who inhabit much of the Middle East and northern Africa. Bedouin have traditionally made their living by animal husbandry, those herding camels being best known. Since many governments have nationalised their traditional range lands, many have now settled in Israel and other countries.
The accepted collection of sacred books of Judaism and Christianity, divided into Old and New Testament s. However, Protestants and Jews on the one hand, and Roman Catholics and Orthodox Christians on the other, differ on which books belong in the Old Testament. Jewish rabbis finalised their collection of holy books the Hebrew Bible by the end of the first century AD. They included only books written in Hebrew or Aramaic and excluded those originally written in Greek though original Hebrew versions of some have since been found.
The early Christian Church drew up its first listing of texts accepted as authentically inspired in the 4th century. It included several books that were part of the Greek Old Testament from pre-Christian times including Judith, the Wisdom of Solomon and 1 and 2 Maccabees. The traditional division of chapters was made in the 13th century, and the numbering of verses in the 16th century. The Bibles of the Eastern churches include some books not accepted in the Catholic and Protestant Bibles. A style of architecture, art and cultural influence arising from the ancient city of Byzantium later renamed Constantinople and now Istanbul.
From about AD until , this city replaced Rome as the capital of the Roman Empire and major governing force of the Mediterranean world. The land God promised to the descendants of Abraham. Though various boundaries are given in the books of Genesis and Exodus, the Promised Land apparently encompassed present-day Israel, Palestine and Lebanon, plus parts of Jordan, Syria and Egypt. Apart from being a group of singers, the choir in church architecture is the area between the transept and the main apse.
This is where stalls for the clergy or liturgical singers are placed. A receptacle for liquids, usually a hole dug in the ground to collect and store rainwater. Emperor of Rome from AD to , who is best known for being the first Roman emperor to become a Christian. He ceased persecutions of Christians and granted freedom of religion within his empire. During a building campaign overseen by his mother, St Helena , he built many churches in the Holy Land, including the original Church of the Holy Sepulchre in Jerusalem and Church of the Nativity in Bethlehem. A series of military campaigns from Christian Europe in the Middle Ages to regain control of the Holy Land from Muslim rule and resume safe access for pilgrims.
There were nine Crusades over a period of years, beginning in Crusaders captured Jerusalem in Their Kingdom of Jerusalem fell after a decisive defeat by the sultan Saladin in at the Horns of Hattin, overlooking the Sea of Galilee. The excesses of the Crusaders sowed seeds of mistrust between East and West that still remain. But historians also recognise the enormous contribution the Crusades made to exchanges in trade, culture, scholarship and technology between Europe and the Middle East. For pilgrims and tourists, the Crusaders left a vast legacy of castles, churches and fortifications in the Holy Land.
An agency of the Catholic Church that administers and maintains 50 sacred sites in Israel, Jordan and Syria. Part of the international Franciscan religious order, its brown-robed friars are a familiar site in the holy places. The custody also known by its Latin name, Custodia Terrae Sanctae has had a presence in the Holy Land since early in the 13th century. Its role encompasses prayer and worship in the holy places, service to local Christians, and hospitality to pilgrims including guesthouses and spiritual support.
It also provides guides for pilgrimage groups and runs the Christian Information Centre just inside the Jaffa Gate in Jerusalem. The symbol of the Franciscan custody is the Jerusalem Cross. It consists of an heraldic cross with crossbars, surrounded by four smaller crosses. The five crosses together are seen to symbolise the five wounds of Christ. A grouping of 10 cities in Palestine and the Transjordan, founded by Alexander the Great and his successors around BC. Members of a strict and highly organised Jewish sect that flourished at the time of Jesus.
Apparently formed in reaction to what they saw as religious laxity in Jerusalem, they lived an austere lifestyle and encouraged celibacy. The sect ceased to exist during the 2nd century AD. Bishop of Caesarea in the early 4th century and prolific author of histories, apologetic and theological works, and biblical commentaries. Eusebius of Caesarea c. His Church History is the principal primary source on the rise of Christianity during its first three centuries. The deportation of many of the inhabitants of Jerusalem and Judaea to Babylonia in present-day Iraq during the 50 years from BC.
The escape of the Israelites from slavery in Egypt under the leadership of Moses. The central event of the Hebrew Bible, the Exodus is also a model for subsequent experiences of liberation in biblical, Jewish, Christian and Muslim traditions. The Exodus entails not only the events in Egypt but also those encompassed within the period from Moses to Joshua, including the wilderness wanderings and the conquest of the land of Canaan. A name originally given in the Middle East to Christians from western Europe, in particular the French who dominated the Crusader Kingdom of Jerusalem, and subsequently to the Franciscans who were seen as their successors.
A reminder of the name survives at the Church of the Holy Sepulchre. A small chapel at the top of the stairway to the right of the entrance is called the Chapel of the Franks, meaning Chapel of the Franciscans. A golden rooster stands on the roof of the present church, completed in The entry point to a walled city. In New Testament times it was applied both to non-Jews and non-Christians.
After some controversy, the early Christian leaders decided that gentiles too, not only Jews, could become Christians. St Paul is referred to as the apostle to the gentiles, both in the Acts of the Apostles and in his own letters. The message of Jesus Christ and the salvation he brought to humankind.
A Semitic language written from right to left with an alphabet of 22 letters. Originally only consonants were used, but vowels were later introduced. Hebrew died out as a vernacular language in Palestine, probably in the late 2nd or 3rd century AD, but continued to be used by Jews for prayer and study.
St Helena, detail from a Bulgarian icon Wikimedia. Mother of the emperor Constantine , she instigated several major churches in the Holy Land and is credited with finding the True Cross. Helena c. Her son Constantine named her Augusta majestic when he became emperor in There she ordered churches built on several holy sites.
A Rome-appointed client-king of Israel. Known for his colossal building projects and his brutality, he is usually called Herod the Great to distinguish him from other members of the dynasty he established. Herod BC , an Idumaean by birth, identified himself as a Jew but maintained a decadent lifestyle. He rebuilt the Second Temple in Jerusalem, the Mediterranean seacoast city of Caesarea and the fortress of Herodium where he was buried. He ordered the killing of the Holy Innocents at Bethlehem and executed several members of his own family, including one of his several wives and two of his sons.
Three of his sons inherited his name and parts of his kingdom. The most notable was Herod Antipas, who had John the Baptist executed. The spread of Greek language, culture and religion through the Middle East, south-west Asia and north-east Africa during the dominant period of the Greek empire. Most Jews in Palestine resisted this influence on religious grounds. A portrait or image, usually representing Christ or a saint, painted on a wooden surface.
Icons are especially venerated by Eastern Christians. The traditional technique uses egg-tempera on solid wood panels, with prayer and contemplation at each step of the process. A screen in Eastern churches that separates the area around the altar from the main body of the church. It is hung with icons and typically has three openings or doors. The central Christian belief that the Son of God took flesh and became a man in the form of Jesus. The word refers both to the event by which Jesus was conceived in the womb of the Virgin Mary, and to the ongoing reality of Jesus being fully human and fully divine.
A monotheistic religion, it is the most populous faith in the world after Christianity. St Jerome, detail, by Marinus van Reymerswaele, c. A Dalmatian-born priest and scholar c. Jerome was encouraged to undertake his translation project by Pope Damasus I, for whom he served as secretary. In he moved from Rome to Bethlehem , where he lived and worked in a two-room cave. The translation he completed, known as the Vulgate , remained the authoritative version of the Bible for Catholics until the 20th century. The Catholic and Eastern Orthodox churches recognise him as a saint.
Jerome also known as Hieronymus, the Latin version of Jerome was known for his ascetic lifestyle and his passionate involvement in doctrinal controversies. The historian Josephus John C. A Jewish historian c. When Jotapata, in northern Galilee, fell to the Romans after a bloody battle in 67, Josephus and 40 companions were trapped in a cave. All made a pact to commit collective suicide by killing each other, one by one. A collective community in Israel, originally based on agriculture but now encompassing other industries including hotels. A member of a kibbutz is called a kibbutznik.
There are about kibbutzim the plural form in the country. Though they began as a blend of socialism and Zionism, most have now been privatised and no longer practise communal living. Food fit for consumption according to Jewish dietary laws, many of which are derived from the books of Leviticus and Deuteronomy.
These laws exclude mammals such as pigs that do not both chew their cud and have cloven hooves. Fish must have skins and scales so shellfish are excluded. Mammals and birds must be slaughtered in a specific way and by a trained individual, and as much blood as possible must be drained or broiled out of it because consumption of blood is forbidden. Meat must not be eaten with dairy products or cooked using the same utensils observant Jews have separate sets of utensils for meat and milk. Wine and other grape products must be made by Jews a restriction that derives from laws against consuming products used in idolatry.
A prescribed form of public worship practised by a specific religious group, according to its traditions. The origin of the word is a Greek composite meaning a service to the state undertaken by a citizen as a public duty. In Judaism this may centre on the reading from the Torah. In Eastern Christianity it is the Eucharist, but in Western Christianity it also encompasses other rites and ceremonies that are part of the public worship of God, as opposed to private devotions.
Worship services in the Middle East, where Christian liturgy first developed, tend to be more elaborate — with more bells, candles and incense, and longer prayers — than Western Christians are accustomed to. Also known as the Our Father or in Latin Pater Noster, it is the simple and spontaneous prayer taught by Christ to his disciples as a model of how to pray. Two versions are given in the New Testament, one in Matthew and the other in Luke Probably the best-known prayer in Christianity, it is also the principal prayer used by Christians in common worship.
According to a long tradition, the Church of Pater Noster on the Mount of Olives in Jerusalem stands over a cave in which Jesus taught this prayer. A person who voluntarily accepts being put to death rather than deny his or her religious beliefs. Originally the word signified a witness who testified to a fact of which he or she had knowledge from personal observation.
In Jewish tradition it denotes an expected or long-for saviour. Jewish tradition envisioned that God would send a saviour from the line of King David to deliver his people from suffering and injustice. The idea that this saviour would suffer appears in numerous psalms attributed to David. A bath or pool, constructed as part of a building, used by Jews for immersion to cleanse from ritual impurity. Many ancient examples have been found in Israel. The authoritative collection of rabbinical oral tradition on various topics of Jewish law, compiled early in the 3rd century AD at Sepphoris.
An art form in which small cut pieces of stone, coloured glass or other materials are laid on a surface to create pictures, geometric patters or inscriptions. Each cut piece, normally roughly cubic, is called a tessera plural tesserae. Some mosaics contain hundreds of thousands of tesserae. Wall, ceiling and floor mosaics, often elaborate, are found in churches throughout the Holy Land.
The word Mosaic is also used to indicate an association with Moses , such as the Mosaic Law found in the Torah. The pre-eminent leader and lawgiver of the Jewish people, who led the Israelites in their Exodus from Egypt and their journeyings in the wilderness. During this time, the Bible says, he received the Ten Commandments from God. But God did not allow Moses to enter the Promised Land. Instead, he viewed it from the top of Mount Nebo , then died at the age of His burial place is unknown.
Jewish religious tradition regards Moses as the author of the Torah , the first five books of the Hebrew Bible. A place of worship for followers of Islam , and usually also a meeting place and focal point for the local Muslim community. Distinctive features often include grand entryways and tall slender towers, or minarets, from which an official called a muezzin or a recording summons the worshippers to prayer five times a day. There are no chairs or seats. The floor is often covered with expensive carpet. Visitors must remove their footwear — not as a sign of respect, but to protect the carpet.
In one wall is a mihrab, a niche indicating the direction of Mecca. Near it is the minbar, a seat at the top of steps, used by the preacher as a pulpit. A place for ablution is usually attached to the mosque. Muhammad, from an early 14th-century manuscript Wikimedia. The founder of the Islamic faith, regarded by Muslims as the last and greatest prophet of God.
His name is sometimes spelt Mohammed or Mohamet. Born in Mecca now in Saudi Arabia around , Muhammad became a successful merchant. When he was 40, according to Muslim tradition, he was visited by the archangel Gabriel, who informed him that he was a messenger of God. In he was forced to flee for his life to Medina.
The collection of 27 books that forms the second section of the Christian Bible. These books, telling the story of Jesus Christ and his apostles, and of the early Church, are the most important writings for Christians. They consist of the Gospels of Matthew, Mark, Luke and John; the Acts of the Apostles, also attributed to Luke; the letters of Paul and several other writers; and the prophetic book of Revelation or Apocalypse.
The collection of books that forms the first section of the Christian Bible. It is similar to the Hebrew Bible, but with some variations. It includes books of history, laws, theology, wisdom, prophecy and poetry. Christian churches differ on the number of books they accept as belonging to the Old Testament. The Orthodox churches generally accept 51 books, the Catholics 46, and the major Protestant denominations The split along doctrinal, theological, linguistic, political and geographic lines divided medieval Christianity into Eastern Greek and Western Latin branches.
The Eastern Orthodox communion now consists of 14 or 15 self-governing churches and 5 others whose leader must be confirmed by a mother church. Many have counterparts that have returned to union with Rome, but retain their own distinctive ritual, language and culture. These are called Eastern-Rite Catholic churches. From the 1st century BC until about AD 70, because space in tombs was scarce, Jews customarily buried their dead in a tomb for a year, then collected the bones and placed them in an ossuary.
Among the ossuaries that have been discovered, particularly in the Jerusalem area, some are decorated with carvings and inscriptions identifying the deceased. A Muslim military administration, based around the Turkish sultan, that ruled much of the Middle East as well as parts of North Africa and the Balkans in Europe from until It was succeeded by the modern Republic of Turkey.
At the height of its power, in the 16th and 17th centuries, it encompassed most of southeastern Europe up to the gates of Vienna; Iraq, Syria, Palestine and Egypt; North Africa as far west as Algeria; and most of the Arabian Peninsula. Historically, this is the region that stretches from the Jordan River valley to the Mediterranean Sea. It is named after the Philistines, who settled on the coastal strip of Canaan.
The name was used for this region as far back as the 5th century BC by the Greek historian Herodotus. Later references were by the Greek philosopher Aristotle and the Jewish scholar Philo of Alexandria — a contemporary of Jesus. FIFTH, A relation of its maintenance, by which it continueth in life, ease, peace, tranquility, and sweetness for ever.
To all which I shall speak something in their proper places, and shall open them before you. But before I begin with any of them, I must speak a word or two concerning John's qualification, whereby he was enabled to behold and take a view of this city; which qualification he relateth in these words following: Verse And he carried me away in the spirit to a great and high mountain, and showed me that great city, the holy Jerusalem, descending out of heaven from God. The angel being to show this holy man this great and glorious vision, he first, by qualifying of him, puts him into a suitable capacity to behold and take the view thereof; 'He carried me away in the spirit.
Whence take notice, that an ordinary frame of spirit is not able to comprehend, nor yet to apprehend extraordinary things. Much of the Spirit discerneth much of God's matters; but little of the Spirit discerneth but little of them: 'I could not speak unto you as unto spiritual, but as unto carnal, even as unto babes in Christ; I have fed you with milk, and not with meat; for hitherto ye were not able to bear it, neither yet now are ye able' 1 Cor Thus it was with the saints of old, when God had either special work for them to do, or great things for them to see.
Ezekiel, when he had the vision of this city in the old law, in the captivity at Babylon, he must be first forefitted with a competent measure of the Spirit Eze Whence note again, that when God calls a man to this or that work for him, he first fits him with a suitable spirit. Ezekiel saith, when God bid him stand upon his feet, that the Spirit entered into him, and set him upon his feet Eze ,2. As a man must have much of the Spirit that sees much of God, and his goodly matters; so he must be also carried away with it; he must by it be taken off from things carnal and earthly, and taken up into the glory of things that are spiritual and heavenly.
The Spirit loveth to do what it doth in private; that man to whom God intendeth to reveal great things, he takes him aside from the lumber and cumber of this world, and carrieth him away in the solace and contemplation of the things of another world; 'And when they were alone, he expounded all things to his disciples' Mark Mark, and when they were ALONE; according to that of the prophet, 'Whom shall he teach knowledge, and whom shall he make to understand doctrine?
Whence observe also, he is the man that is like to know most of God, that is oftenest in private with him Luke He that obeyeth when God saith, Come up hither, he shall see the bride, the Lamb's wife. For 'through desire a man having separated himself, seeketh and intermeddleth with all wisdom' Pro He carried me away in the Spirit to a great and high mountain. Thus did God of old also; for when he showed to Moses the patterns of the heavenly things, he must ascend to the Mount Sinai Exo He must into the mount also, when he hath the view of the Holy Land, and of that goodly mountain Lebanon Deu Whence we may learn that the things of God are far from man, as he is natural; and also that there are very great things between us and the sight of them: none can see them but such as are carried away in the Spirit and set on high.
To a great and high mountain. Wherefore Christ is called the Mountain of the Lord's house, or that on which the house of God is placed; he is also called the Rock of ages, and the Rock that is higher than we. This is the hill from whence the prophet Ezekiel had the vision of this city Eze ; 'And upon this rock [saith Christ] I will build my church, and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it' Matt The Vision of the Holy City in General. Jerusalem, in the language of the Scripture, is to be acknowledged for the church and spouse of the Lord Jesus; and is to be considered either generally or more particularly.
Now as she is to be taken generally, so she is to be understood as being 'the whole family in heaven and earth,' Eph ; and as she is thus looked upon, so she is not considered with respect to this or that state and condition of the church here in the world, but simply as she is the church: therefore it is said, when at any time any are converted from Satan to God, that they 'are come unto Mount Zion, and unto the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem; and to an innumerable company of angels; to the general assembly and church of the first-born which are written in heaven; to God the judge of all, and to the spirits of just men made perfect; and to Jesus, - and to the blood of sprinkling' Heb , But again, as Jerusalem is thus generally to be understood, so also she is to be considered more particularly: 1.
Either as she relates to her first and purest state; or, 2. As she relates to her declined and captivated state; or, 3. With reference to her being recovered again from her apostatized and captivated condition. Thus it was with Jerusalem in the letter; which threefold state of this city shall be most exactly answered by our gospel Jerusalem, by our New Testament church.
Her first state was in the days of Christ and his apostles, and answereth to Jerusalem in the days of Solomon; her second state is in the days of antichrist, and answereth to the carrying away of the Jews from their city into Babylon; and her third state is this in the text, and answereth to their return from captivity, and rebuilding their city and walls again: all which will be fully manifest in this discourse following.
Rev 13 , she goeth under the name of a woman, a woman in travail, a woman flying before the dragon, a woman flying into the wilderness, there to continue in an afflicted and tempted condition, and to be glad of wilderness nourishment, until the time of her enemies were come to an end Rev Now the reason why she lost the title of city at her going into captivity is, because then she lost her situation and strength; she followed others than Christ, wherefore he suffered her enemies to scale her walls, to break down her battlements; he suffered, as you see here, the great red dragon, and beast with seven heads and ten horns, to get into her vineyard, who made most fearful work both with her and all her friends; her gates also were now either broken down or shut up, so that none could, according to her laws and statutes, enter into her; her charter also, even the Bible itself, was most grossly abused and corrupted, yea, sometimes burned and destroyed almost utterly; wherefore the Spirit of God doth take away from her the title of city, and leaveth her to be termed a wandering woman, as aforesaid.
And truly thus it was in the letter, in the destruction of Jerusalem by the king of Babylon and his wicked instruments, by whose hands the city was broken up, the walls pulled down, the gates burned, the houses rifled, the virgins ravished, and the children laid dead in the top of every street 2 Chron ; Jer 52; Lam 1; 2; 3; 4. Now was Zion become a ploughed field, and Jerusalem turned to heaps; a place of briars and thorns, and of wasteness and desolation Micah ; Isa , Second, The phrase also that is joined with this of city doth much concern the point; she is here called 'the new and holy city,' which words are explained by these, 'prepared as a bride and adorned for her husband.
Wherefore this city is nothing else but the church returned out of captivity from under the reign of antichrist, as is yet farther manifest, because, Third. We find no city to answer that which was built after the Jews' return from captivity but this; for this, and only this, is the city that you find in this prophecy that is nominated as the antitype of that second of the Jews; wherefore John hath no relation of her while towards the doom of antichrist, and no description of her in particular until antichrist is utterly overthrown; as all may see that wisely read Rev To show us how great and numerous a people will then be in the church; the church may be a woman, a temple, a spouse, when she is but few, a handful, but two or three; but to be a city, and that in her glory, it bespeaks great store of members, inhabitants, and citizens; especially when she goeth under the name of a great city, as here she does.
He 'showed me that great city. She goeth rather under the name of a city, than temple or spouse, to show us also how plentifully the nations and kingdoms of men shall at that day traffic with her, and in her, for her goodly merchandize of grace and life; to show us, I say, what wonderful custom the church of God at this day shall have among all sorts of people, for her heavenly treasures. It is said of Tyrus and Babylon, that their merchandize went unto all the world, and men from all quarters under heaven came to trade and to deal with them for their wares Eze 27; Rev ,3.
Why thus it will be in the latter day with the church of God; the nations shall come from far, from Tarshish, Pul, Lud, Tubal, Javan, and the isles afar off. They shall come, saith God, out of all nations upon horses and mules, and upon swift beasts, to my holy mountain Jerusalem. Alas, the church at that day when she is a woman only, or a temple either, may be without that beauty, treasure, amiableness, and affecting glory that she will be endowed with when she is a prosperous city.
His marvellous kindness is seen 'in a strong city' Psa In cities, you know, are the treasures, beauty, and glory of kingdoms; and it is thither men go that are desirous to solace themselves therewith. It is called a city, rather than a woman or temple, to show us how strongly and securely it will keep its inhabitants at that day. Deu ,2; Num But lastly, and more especially, the church is called here a city, chiefly to show us that now she shall be undermost no longer.
Babylon reigned, and so shall Jerusalem at that day. Now shall she, when she is built and complete, have a complete conquest and victory over all her enemies; she shall reign over them; the law shall go forth of her that rules them, and the governors of all the world at that day shall be Jerusalem men. And saviours shall come up on mount Zion, to judge the mount of Esau, and the kingdom shall be the Lord's' Obad 20, There brake he 'the ships of Tarshish with an east wind. As we have heard, so have we seen in the city of the Lord of hosts, in the city of our God; God will establish it for ever' Psa For observe it, Christ hath not only obtained the kingdom of heaven for those that are his, when this world is ended, but hath also, as a reward for his sufferings, the whole world given into his hand; wherefore, as all the kings, and princes, and powers of this world have had their time to reign, and have glory in this world in the face of all, so Christ will have his time at this day, to show who is 'the only Potentate - and Lord of lords' 1 Tim At which day he will not only set up his kingdom in the midst of their kingdoms, as he doth now, but will set it up even upon the top of their kingdoms; at which day there will not be a nation in the world but must bend to Jerusalem or perish Isa For 'the kingdom and dominion, and the greatness of the kingdom under the whole heaven, shall be given to the people of the saints of the Most High, whose kingdom is an everlasting kingdom, and all dominions shall serve and obey him' Dan O holiness, how shall it shine in kings and nations, when God doth this!
What he here should mean by heaven. What it is for this city to descend out of it. And why she is said to descend out of it from God. For the word heaven, in Scripture it is variously to be understood, but generally either materially or metaphorically; now not materially here, but metaphorically; and so is generally, if not always, taken in this book. Now that it is not to be taken for the material heavens where Christ in person is, consider, that the descending of this city is not the coming of glorified saints with their Lord; because that even after the descending, yea and building of this city, there shall be sinners converted to God; but at the coming of the Lord Jesus from heaven with his saints, the door shall be shut; that is, the door of grace, against all unbelievers Luke ; Matt And observe it, though the church of Christ under the tyranny of antichrist, loseth the title of a standing city, yet in the worst of times she loseth not the title of heaven.
She is heaven when the great red dragon is in her, and heaven when the third part of her stars are cast unto the earth; she is heaven also when the beast doth open his throat against her, to blaspheme her God, his tabernacle, and those that dwell in her. Now, then, to show you what we are to understand by this, that she is said to descend out of heaven; for indeed to speak properly, Jerusalem is always in the Scriptures set in the highest ground, and men are said to descend, when they go down from her, but to ascend, or go up when they are going thitherwards Eze ; Neh ; Matt ,18; Luke ; But yet though this be true, there must also be something significant in this word descending; wherefore when he saith, he saw this city to descend out of heaven, he would have us understand, 1.
That though the church under antichrist be never so low, yet out of her loins shall they come that yet shall be a reigning city Heb ,13, Generation is a descending from the loins of our friends; he therefore speaks of the generation of the church. Wherefore the meaning is, That out of the church that is now in captivity, there shall come a complete city, so exact in all things, according to the laws and liberties, privileges and riches of a city, that she shall lie level with the great charter of heaven.
Isa ,4,7. Thus therefore by descending we may understand that the church's generation shall be this holy city, and shall build up themselves the tower of the flock Micah When he saith, This holy city descended out of heaven, he would have us understand also what a blessing and happiness this city at her rebuilding will be to the whole world. Never were kind and seasonable showers more profitable to the tender new-mown grass than will this city at this day be, to the inhabitants of the world; they will come as a blessing from heaven upon them.
As the prophet saith, 'The remnant of Jacob shall be in the midst of many people, as a dew from the Lord; as the showers upon the grass, that tarrieth not for man, nor waiteth for the sons of men' Micah O the grace, the light and glory that will strike with spangling beams from this city, as from a sun, into the farthest parts of the world! And Sharon [where the sweet roses grew, Cant ], shall be a fold for flocks, and the valley of Achor a place for the herds to lie down in, for my people that have sought me' Isa Fear not, but let your hands be strong' Zech And now for the third particular, namely, What it is to descend out of heaven from God.
To descend out of heaven, that is, out of the church in captivity, 'from God,' is this: The church is the place in which God doth beget all those that are the children of him; wherefore in that they are said to descend out of heaven 'from God,' it is as if he had said, the children of the church are heaven-born, begotten of God, and brought forth in the church of Christ. For 'Jerusalem which is above is the mother of us all' Gal When he saith he saw this Jerusalem come out of heaven from God, he means that those of the church in captivity that shall build this city, they shall be a people peculiarly fitted and qualified for this work of God.
It was not all the children of Israel that had their hand in building Jerusalem after the captivity of old; 'their nobles put not their necks to the work of the Lord' Neh Also there were many of Judah that were sworn to Tobiah, the arch-opposer of the building of the city, because of some kindred and relation that then was between them and him Neh And as it was then, so we do expect it will be now; some will be even at the beginning of this work, in Babylon, at that time also some will be cowardly and fearful, yea, and even men hired to hinder the work Neh Wherefore I say, those of the church that at that day builded the city, they were men of a particular and peculiar spirit, which also will so be at the building of New Jerusalem.
Isa It was thus in all ages, in every work of God, some of his people, some of his saints in special in all ages, have been used to promote, and advance, and perfect the work of their generations. This city descends or comes out of heaven from God, that is, by his special working and bringing to pass; it was God that gave them the pattern even when they were in Babylon; it was God that put it into their hearts while there, to pray for deliverance; it was God that put it into the hearts of the kings of the Medes and Persians to give them liberty to return and build; and it was God that quailed the hearts of those that by opposing did endeavour to hinder the bringing the work to perfection ; yea, it was God that did indeed bring the work to perfection; wherefore she may well be said to descend 'out of heaven from God': as he also saith himself by the prophet, I will cause the captivity of Judah, and the captivity of Israel to return, and I will build them as at the first Ezra ; ; Neh ; ; ,16; Jer ; ; Eze ; ; Amos Lastly, When he saith he saw her descend from God out of heaven, he may refer to her glory, which at her declining departed from her, and ascended to God, as the sap returns into the root at the fall of the leaf; which glory doth again at her return descend, or come into the church, and branches of the same, as the sap doth arise at the spring of the year, for indeed the church's beauty is from heaven, and it either goeth up thither from her, or else comes from thence to her, according to the natures of both fall and spring Cant 2.
Thus you see what this heaven is, and what it is for this city to descend out of it; also what it is for this city to descend out of it from God. Again, As the glory of God departed from this city at her going into captivity, so when she returned again, she had also then returned to her the glory of God; whereupon this very prophet that saw the glory of God go from her at her going into captivity, did see it, the very same; and that according as it departed, so return at her deliverance.
It was according to the appearance of the vision which I saw, even according to the vision which I saw when I came to destroy the city, and the visions were like the vision that I saw by the river Chebar; and I fell upon my face, and the glory of the Lord came into the house by the way of the gate whose prospect is toward the east; so the Spirit took me up, and brought me into the inner court, and behold, the glory of the Lord filled the house' Eze Thus you see it was in the destruction and restoration of the Jews' Jerusalem, by which God doth plainly show us how things will be in our gospel church; she was to decline and lose her glory, she was to be trampled—as she was a city— for a long time under the feet of the unconverted and wicked world.
Again, she was after this to be builded, and to be put into her former glory; at which time she was to have her glory, her former glory, even the glory of God, returned to her again. And again, 'I am returned unto Zion, and will dwell in the midst of Jerusalem' Zech It is true God doth not leave his people in some sense, even in the worst of times, and in their most forlorn condition John , as he showeth by his being with them in their sad state in Egypt and Babylon, and other of their states of calamity Dan As he saith, 'Although I have cast them far off among the heathen, and although I have scattered them among the countries, yet will I be to them a little sanctuary in the countries where they shall come' Eze God is with his church, even in her greatest adversity, both to limit, bound, measure, and to point out to her quantity and quality, her beginning and duration of distress and temptation Isa ; Rev But yet I say the glory of God, in the notion of Ezekiel and John, when they speak of the restoration of this city, that is not always upon his people, though always they are beloved and counted for his peculiar treasure.
She may then have his grace, but not at the same time the glory of his grace; his power, but not the glory of his power; she may also have his majesty, but not the glory thereof; God may be with his church, even then when the glory is departed from Israel. The difference that is between her having his grace, power, and majesty, and the glory of each, is manifest in these following particulars;—grace, power, and majesty, when they are in the church in their own proper acts, only as we are considered saints before God, so they're invisible, and that not only altogether to the world, but often to the very children of God themselves; but now when the glory of these do rest upon the church, according to Ezekiel and John; why then it will be visible and apparent to all beholders.
Now, then, to speak a word or two, in particular to the glory of God, that at this day will be found to settle upon this city. Therefore, at her returning, she shall not only have his grace upon her, but the very glory of his grace shall be seen upon her; the glory of pardoning grace shall now shine in her own soul, and grace in the glory of it shall appear in all her doings.
Now shall both our inward and outward man be most famously adorned and beautified with salvation; the golden pipes that are on the head of the golden candlestick, shall at this day convey, with all freeness, the golden oil thereout, into our golden hearts and lamps Zech Our wine shall be mixed with gall no longer, we shall now drink the pure blood of the grape; the glory of pardoning and forgiving mercy shall so show itself at this day in this city, and shall so visibly abide there in the eyes of all spectators, that all shall be enflamed with it. And the Gentiles shall see thy righteousness, and all kings thy glory; and thou shalt be called by a new name, which the mouth of the Lord shall name' Isa ,2.
And again, 'The Lord hath made bare his holy arm in the eyes of all the nations, and all the ends of the earth shall see the salvation of our God' Isa ; Psa At that day, the prophet tells us, there shall be holiness upon the very horses' bridles, and that the pots in the Lord's house shall be like the bowls before the altar, and every pot in Jerusalem shall be holiness unto the Lord Zech , The meaning of all these places is, that in the day that the Lord doth turn his church and people into the frame and fashion of a city, and when he shall build them up to answer the first state of the church, there will such grace and plenty of mercy be extended unto her, begetting such faith and holiness and grace in her soul, and all her actions, that she shall convince all that are about her that she is the city, the beloved city, the city that the Lord hath chosen; for after that he had said before, he would return to Zion, and dwell in the midst of Jerusalem Zech , he saith, moreover, that Jerusalem shall be called a city of truth, and the mountain of the Lord of hosts, the holy mountain.
As the glory of the grace of God will, at this day, be wonderfully manifest in and over his city; so also at that day will be seen the glory of his power. The sum is, God will, at the day of his rebuilding the New Jerusalem, so visibly make bare his arm, and be so exalted before all by his power towards his people, that no people shall dare to oppose—or stand, if they do make the least attempt to hinder—the stability of this city. The breaker is come up before them, they have broken up [the antichristian siege that hath been laid against them], they have passed through the gate, and are gone out by it, and their king shall pass before them, and the Lord on the head of them' Micah , But 'not by might, nor yet by power,' that is, the power and arm of flesh, but by the power of the Word and Spirit of God, which will prevail, and must prevail, to quash and overturn all opposition Zech ; Zeph ; Joel ; Zech Now the high ones, lofty ones, haughty ones, and the proud, shall see so evidently the hand of the Lord towards his servants, and his indignation towards his enemies, that 'they shall go into the holes of the rocks, and into the caves of the earth, - and into the tops of the ragged rocks, for the fear of the Lord, and for the glory of his majesty, when he ariseth to shake terribly the earth' Isa , Where the presence of the Lord doth so appear upon a people, that those that are spectators perceive and understand it, it must need work on those spectators one of these two things;—either first a trembling and astonishment, and quailing of heart, as it doth among the implacable enemies Josh , or else a buckling and bending of heart, and submission to his people and ways Josh As saith the prophet, 'The sons also of them that afflicted thee shall come bending unto thee, and all they that despised thee shall fall down at the soles of thy feet; and they shall call thee The city of the Lord, the Zion of the Holy One of Israel' Isa As Moses said to the children of Israel, 'The Lord your God shall lay the fear of you, and the dread of you, upon all the land that ye shall tread upon, as he hath said unto you' Deu At this day the footsteps of the Lord will be so apparent and visible in all his actions and dispensations in and towards his people, this holy city, that all shall see, as I have said, how gracious, loving, kind, and good the Lord is now towards his own children; such glory, I say, will be over them, and upon them, that they all will shine before the world; and such tender bowels in God towards them, that no sooner can an adversary peep, or lift up his head against his servants, but his hand will be in the neck of them; so that in short time he will have brought his church into that safety, and her neighbours into that fear and submission, that they shall not again so much as dare to hold up a hand against her, no, not for a thousand years Rev And out of them shall proceed thanksgiving, and the voice of them that make merry; and I will multiply them, and they shall not be few; and I will also glorify them, and they shall not be small: Their children also shall be as aforetime, and their congregation shall be established before me, and I will punish all that oppress them' Jer This therefore is another branch of her duty; she in her descending hath 'the glory of God,' and also 'the light of a stone most precious.
All which words, with the nature of their light and colour, the Holy Ghost doth in the vision of John comprise, and placeth within the colour of the jasper and the crystal-stone. And indeed, though the vision of John and Ezekiel, touching the end of the matter, be but one and the same, yet they do very much vary and differ in terms and manner of language; Ezekiel tells us that the man that he saw come to measure the city and temple, had in his hand 'a line of flax' , which line John calls a golden reed; Ezekiel tells us that the river came out of, or 'from under the threshold of the house' ; but John saith it came out of the throne of God and of the Lamb.
The like might also be showed you in many other particulars; as here you see they differ as touching the terms of the light and brightness that appears upon this city at her rebuilding, which the Holy Ghost represents to John under the light and glory of the jasper and crystal-stone; for indeed the end of Ezekiel's vision was to show us, that as when the glory of God departed from the city, it signified that he would take away from them the light of his Word, and their clearness of worship, suffering them to mourn for the loss of the one, and to grope for the want of the other; so at his return again he would give them both their former light of truth, and also the clearness of spirit to understand it, which also John doth show us shall last for ever.
And her light was like unto a stone most precious Now then when he saith this city hath the light of this stone to descend in, he means that she comes in the shining wisdom, knowledge, understanding, and influences of Christ, out of her afflicted and captivated state; and observe it, she is rather said to descend in the light of this stone, than in the light of God, though both be true, because it is the man Christ, the stone which the builders rejected, 'in whom are hid all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge,' of whose fulness we do all receive, and grace for grace; 'for it pleased the Father that in him should all fulness dwell' Col ; John ; Col See also Acts and Eph This showeth us, then, these two things— First.
That the time of the return of the saints to build the ruinous city is near, yea, very near, when the light of the Lord Jesus begins to shine unto perfect day in her. God will not bring forth his people out of Babylon, especially those that are to be the chief in the building of this city, without their own judgments.
As he saith also in another place, 'The light of the moon shall be as the light of the sun, and the light of the sun shall be sevenfold, as the light of seven days, in the day that the Lord bindeth up the breach of his people, and health the stroke of their wound' Isa The heart also of the rash shall understand knowledge, and the tongue of the stammerers shall be ready to speak plainly' Isa ,4.
The Lord shall be now exalted, and be very high, for he will fill Zion with judgment and righteousness, and wisdom and knowledge shall be the stability of thy times Isa ,6. When Israel went out of Egypt, they wanted much of this, they went out blindfolded, as it were, they went they knew not whither; wherefore they went not in the glory of that which this city descendeth in; as Moses said, 'The Lord hath not given you an heart to perceive, nor eyes to see, nor ears to hear, unto this day' Deu But these shall see every step they take; they shall be like the beasts that had eyes both before and behind: they shall see how far they are come out of Antichrist, and shall see also how far yet they have to go, to the complete rebuilding and finishing of this city.
This showeth us how sweet and pleasant the way of this church will be at this day before them. Light, knowledge, and judgment in God's matters doth not only give men to see and behold all the things with which they are concerned, but the things themselves being good, they do also by this means convey very great sweetness and pleasantness into the hearts of those that have the knowledge of them.
Every step, I say, that now they take, it shall be as it were in honey and butter. As he saith, 'Again I will build thee, and thou shalt be built; O virgin of Israel, thou shalt again be adorned with tabrets, and shall go forth in the dances of them that make merry. Behold, I will bring them from the north country, and gather them from the coasts of the earth, and with them the blind and the lame, the woman with child, and her that travaileth with child together; a great company shall return thither' Jer ,7,8.
By these words, the blind and the lame, the woman with child, and her that travaileth, he would have us understand thus much— 1. That the way of God shall, by the illuminating grace of Christ, be made so pleasant, so sweet, and so beautiful in the souls of all at that day, that even the blindest shall not stumble therein, neither shall the lame refuse it for fear of hurt; yea, the blind, the lame, the woman with child, and her that travaileth shall, though they be of all in most evil case to travel, and go the journey, yet, at this day, by reason of the glorious light and sweetness that now will possess them, even forget their impediments, and dance, as after musical tabrets.
This city, upon the time of her rebuilding, shall have her blind men see, her halt and lame made strong; she also that is with child, and her that travaileth, shall jointly see the city-work that at this day will be on foot, and put into form and order, yet before the end. At that time will I bring you again, even in the time that I gather you, for I will make you a name and a praise among all people of the earth, when I turn back your captivity before your eyes, saith the Lord' Zeph , And if so, then how beautiful, desirable, and precious will that light be, that is not only heavenly, and from Christ, but that will be universal among all saints, to show them the same thing, and to direct them to and in the same work.
The want of this hath, to this day, been one great reason of that crossness of judgment and persuasion that hath been found among the saints, and that hath caused that lingering and disputing about the glorious state of the church in the latter days; some being for its excellency to consist chiefly in outward glory; and others, swerving on the other side, conclude she shall not have any of this: some conceiving that this city will not be built until the Lord comes from heaven in person; others again concluding that when he comes, then there shall be no longer tarrying here, but that all shall forthwith, even all the godly, be taken up into heaven: with divers other opinions in these matters.
And thus many 'run to and fro,' but yet, God be thanked, knowledge does increase, though the vision will be sealed, even to the time of the end Dan But now, I say, at the time of the end, the Spirit shall be poured down upon us from on high Isa ; now 'they also that erred in spirit shall come to understanding' Isa 29;24 ; the city shall descend in the light of a stone most precious.