The Berean Expositor
Volume 17 - Page 82 of 144
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Studies in the Prophets.
Times and Seasons.
July 1927
The great burden of the Prophets is Israel's restoration, its basis is the new covenant, and its
blessings can only be enjoyed by a new heart. So far we have seen. Another item that must of necessity
be considered is that of time. All events that happen within human ken must be related to space and time.
The place where this restoration takes place we must consider, but for this present article we will look
into the question of the time when this promised blessing shall take place.
When we speak of time in connection with prophecy, we must remember that we have no warrant
from Scripture to fix dates. It is a pathetic sight to see upon a second-hand bookstall, books that most
solemnly and seriously fix the date of the Lord's return, and the end of the age, all discarded and self-
condemned. Such attempts are foredoomed to failure. We should remember the reply of the Lord to His
disciples when they enquired concerning the time of Israel's restoration, "It is not for you to know the
times or the seasons, which the Father hath put in His own power" (Acts 1: 7). What is provided for us in
the word of prophecy is a sequence of events which must be fulfilled, and as we by faith see this
fulfilment of Scripture, we are exhorted to look up, and lift up our heads, for our redemption draweth
nigh (Luke 21: 28).
It ought not to be necessary, yet for clearness sake we would state that this passage from Luke,
while providing us with a principle of interpretation, is not quoted here as though the hope of our calling
is in any way connected with Israel's restoration, other than the broad inference that if Israel's time of
blessing is obviously near, how much nearer must our own hope be. We are therefore to look into the
prophets to note any features concerning the period of restoration, and shall expect that as these
particulars accumulate, so the time of Israel's restoration will become more clear. Among the expressions
that recur in this connection are (I) "The day of the Lord," (2) "In that day," and (3) "In the last days," or
"In the latter days."
Prophetic periods in Isaiah.
The first reference to prophetic periods in Isaiah is that of chapter 2: Here we read of "the last days,"
"in that day," and "the day of the Lord of hosts." If we are to give careful examination of these passages,
Isa. 2: will occupy the remainder of our available space. We feel, however, that the reader will be better
served if we continue to take a broader view, and give a general impression. Therefore we shall assume
that the passages will be studied and read while we content ourselves with outlines and salient points.
Isaiah 2:
A. In the last
B. a. The Lord's house exalted. All nations flow.
. . . we will walk.
days (1-5).
b. Many people say. Come ye, let us go
a. The Lord shall judge among the nations.
b. 0 house of Jacob, Come ye, let us walk.
100: 6-9. The land full of idols.
D. 10. Enter into rock, and hide in dust, for fear of the Lord, and for the glory of His majesty.
B. a. The lofty humbled. The Lord alone exalted.
A. In that day
b The day of the Lord of hosts "upon" ten features of human pride.
The Lord
of hosts. (11-17)
a. The loftiness of man bowed down. The Lord alone exalted.
100: 18. The idols shall utterly pass away.
D. 19-21. Go into holes of rocks, and caves of the earth, for fear of the Lord, and for the glory of His majesty.
This brief analysis brings forward several features which are severally expanded in the remainder of
the prophets:
1. The exaltation of the mountain of the Lord's house, and
2. The exaltation of the Lord Himself.
3. The coming of the nations to learn of the law from Jerusalem.
4. The abolition of war.
5. The abolition of idols.
6. The terror of man.