'As a Thief in the Night'
Summary: A survey of the New Testament reveals that, though we may recognize the "signs of the times," we will not be able to determine when Jesus Christ will return. David Grabbe pursues the concept of Christ's second coming "as a thief in the night," and what this means to Christians in this end time.
'Behold, A Virgin Shall Conceive . . .'
Summary: To some, the virgin birth is a major teaching. However, Richard Ritenbaugh shows that it is only one of several signs that prove Jesus is the promised Messiah. Moreover, its major purpose is not to glorify Mary but her divine Son!
'Behold, He is Coming with Clouds'
Summary: Jesus Himself instructs us to live by every word of God (Matthew 4:4; Luke 4:4), advice that is also useful when we study the Bible. Most of the passages that describe Christ's return to earth in power and glory at the end of the age contain the same detail: that He will come in, on, or with clouds. David Grabbe provides biblical background to help us understand why this detail is significant.
'Seventy Weeks Are Determined...'
Summary: The Seventy Weeks Prophecy is a bone of contention among prophecy experts. Richard Ritenbaugh shows that simply taking the Bible at face value makes the meaning of this prophecy crystal clear!
Born of a Woman
Summary: Though the church of God has traditionally emphasized His death over His birth, the prophecies concerning Christ's first advent are vitally important in establishing our faith in His second coming. Richard Ritenbaugh summarizes twelve Old Testament prophecies and their significance to us.
Do You Desire the Day of the Lord?
Summary: The prophet Amos describes the Israelites of his day as proud and secure in their special relationship with God, while God Himself castigates them for presuming He approved of them. They so misjudged matters that they eagerly desired the Day of the Lord! Using their example, David Grabbe compares them to what Jesus says about the Laodiceans, sounding a warning to us to pay attention to our true spiritual condition.
Dominion and Glory and a Kingdom
Summary: After the Jewish leadership tried to indict Jesus with false testimony, the high priest asks Him directly, 'I adjure You by the living God that You tell us if You are the Christ, the Son of God.' Christ's affirmative answer raises more questions than it answers. David Grabbe uses the Old Testament sources of Jesus' answer to explain just what He conveyed to the chief priests, elders, and council members.
God's Kingdom in the Parables (Part Four)
Summary: The eight parables of Matthew 13 form a structure called a chiasm, in which the individual parables form pairs (first and eighth, second and seventh, etc.) that correspond to and resolve each other. Utilizing the prevailing theme of God's Kingdom, David Grabbe shows how Jesus' parables of the Pearl of Great Price, the Dragnet, and the Householder resolve the problems raised in their corresponding earlier parables.
God's Promises Are Sure!
Summary: Using primarily the story of Joseph, John Ritenbaugh expounds the lessons we can learn and the encouragement we can glean from God's dealings with men during the time of the Feast of Trumpets.
Is the Love of Many Growing Cold?
Summary: Among the best-known signs of the end of the age is Jesus' declaration in Matthew 24:12 that "the love of many will grow cold." However, David Grabbe advises caution in judging that such a state exists in others, in a church group, or in the church as a whole. Could love be there but just not as we might expect it?
Lowly and Riding on a Donkey?
Summary: Each of the four gospels include a description of the fulfillment of Zechariah's prophecy that Messiah would ride into Jerusalem on a donkey. Ronny Graham explores what we know of the donkey as an animal, revealing that this misunderstood beast has a symbolic meaning that sheds light on both our Savior and Christian character.
The 'Open Door' of Philadelphia
Summary: The modern church of God, particularly a few of its splinter organizations, have made a big deal out of Revelation's letters to the seven churches. Often highlighted is the "open door" promised in the letter to Philadelphia. David Grabbe provides proof from Isaiah 22 that our understanding of this image should be revised to reflect the insight given in this neglected Old Testament prophecy.
The All-Important Introduction to Revelation
Summary: Oftentimes, in our haste to get to the "good stuff," we skip the introductions of books and articles. Richard Ritenbaugh explores the first chapter of Revelation and shows that skipping it deprives us of vital information necessary for understanding the rest of the book.
Summary: The Branch is a well-known Old Testament prophetic figure, identified as the Messiah by most people. Yet, is there more to it than that? Why is the Branch not mentioned in the New Testament? What does it mean to us?
The End Is Not Yet
Summary: Every Christian longs for the return of Jesus Christ, and we search for fulfillments of the signs signaling that wonderful prophetic event. The seemingly rapid increase in natural disasters and heavenly spectacles can excite us to a fever pitch. Richard Ritenbaugh cautions that we need make sure that our understanding and interpretation of such signs align with what the Bible says about them.
The First Prophecy (Part One)
Summary: Genesis is a book of beginnings, and in that theme, it also contains the first prophecy. In the first part of this three-part series, Richard Ritenbaugh explains God's curse on the serpent in Genesis 3:14-15.
The Four Horsemen (Part One): In the Saddle?
Summary: The Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse are a terrifying image of impending doom. Richard Ritenbaugh searches out the details of these fearsome, yet enigmatic figures, whose hoofbeats can already be heard on the earth!
The Scepter of the Kingdom of God (Part Two)
Summary: In Part One, we saw that God’s scepter promise, given to the tribe of Judah in Genesis 49:10, descended from monarch to monarch of the royal house of David. ...
Thy Kingdom Come! (Part One)
Summary: We understand that the Kingdom of God stands at the center of the gospel message Jesus Christ brought, but while we are well aware of its future rule over mankind, many do not realize it also has past and present aspects. This article explores the ancient history of God's Kingdom, as well as its current reality to His people.
To Watch and Keep
Summary: The Bible is well known as a Book of prophecy, but what is the true purpose of prophecy? Is it merely to enlighten us about the future, so that the "wise" will have an advantage over everyone else when the time comes? Charles Whitaker suggests that God's spiritual purposes for prophecy concern the subjects of warning and keeping.
Was Jesus Christ's Body Broken? (Part Two)
Summary: In Part One, we saw that the word “broken” does not actually appear in the oldest and perhaps best Greek manuscripts of I Corinthians 11:24: “.. . and when [Jesus] had given thanks, He broke it and said, "Take, eat; this is My body ..."
What Is the Book of Revelation?
Summary: Everyone knows what the book of Revelation is all about, right? The end of the world, strange and fearsome symbols, and enigmatic clues about the shape of things to come. David Grabbe, however, argues that, though those are included in its pages, the real subject of Revelation is readily apparent.
Where Is the Promise of His Coming?
Summary: As this world keeps on turning, more people become skeptical about the return of Jesus Christ. The Bible, however, insists that He will come again and quickly. Richard Ritenbaugh advises watchful, sober expectation because the Lord does not delay His coming.
Where the Eagles Are Gathered
Summary: Jesus Christ's Olivet Prophecy provides a handful of specific signs of His return, one of which seems particularly obscure. David Grabbe analyzes His saying, "Wherever the carcass is, there the eagles will be gathered together," in Matthew 24:28, explaining that it is a warning that Jesus will come back in judgment against those who resist Him.