Oct 12: 1Chr 29 | Eze 38 | John 4
Reading 1 - 1Ch 29:9
"The people rejoiced at the willing response of their leaders, for they had given freely and wholeheartedly to the LORD. David the king also rejoiced greatly" (1Ch 29:9).
THE PEOPLE REJOICED AT THE WILLING RESPONSE OF THEIR LEADERS: "They were not only glad that they had it to offer, but that they had hearts to do it; they found themselves quite free to do the work, and saw it was so with others, which gave them extreme pleasure..."
FOR THEY HAD GIVEN FREELY AND WHOLEHEARTEDLY TO THE LORD: "Not grudgingly, but cheerfully; not pressed and urged to it; not by constraint, but freely, and that with a pure view to the honour and glory of God..."
DAVID THE KING ALSO REJOICED GREATLY: "It made his heart glad exceedingly, now he was old, and just going out of the world, to see this good work in such forwardness, on which his heart had been so much set; it gave him reason to believe it would be set about in good earnest, be carried on with vigour, and brought to perfection" (John Gill).
Reading 2 - Eze 38; 39
Eze 38; 39 will be fulfilled after Christ has returned and begun his reign as King of the Holy Land:
Eze 37, 38, and 39 are to be read as one prophecy. Eze 37 begins with the dry bones of Israel scattered in Gentile lands (Eze 37: 21), and Eze 39:11 speaks of Gentile bones scattered in Israel's Land. If this is accepted, then what of the fine picture presented in Eze 37 of God's tabernacle planted in the midst of a sanctified Israel, and "my servant David being their prince for ever" (Eze 37: 25,27)? The northern invasion follows on AFTER this.
Repeatedly Israel is described as "dwelling safely" or "securely" (Eze 38:8,11; 39:26). This is a phrase which, in the prophets, is always associated with the Kingdom; eg, Eze 34:25,27,28; Hos 2:18; Zec 14: 11. Israel is plainly NOT "dwelling safely" today.
"Dwelling without walls, and having neither bars nor gates" (Eze 38:11) does not describe the Israel of today, which spends a higher percentage of its national income on armaments than any other nation. But, if these words are applied to Israel dwelling in peace under its Messiah, there is no difficulty. On the other hand Zec 2:4,5 uses very similar language about Jerusalem in its Kingdom Glory.
The invader is intent on carrying away "silver and gold, cattle and goods -- a great spoil" (Eze 38:13). This scarcely applies to the Israel of today.
Eze 38 is parallel to Psa 2: "The kings of the earth set themselves, and the rulers take counsel together, against the Lord, and against His Anointed... Yet have I set my king upon my holy hill of Zion" (Psa 2:2,6). The experience of David AFTER his capture of Jerusalem, and enthronement there (2Sa 8) makes an impressive prototype; so this is a prophecy of a time AFTER the Kingdom is established.
Reading 3 - John 4:35
"Do you not say, 'Four months more and then the harvest'? I tell you, open your eyes and look at the fields! They are ripe for harvest" (John 4:35).
"Jesus uses words which recall Isaiah's language concerning the gathering of Zion's children in the day of her exaltation: 'Lift up thine eyes round about, and behold: all these gather themselves together, and come to thee' (Isa 49:18). Even then the Lord himself was realizing the joy of sowing and reaping, and gathering fruit unto life eternal. He was the sower, and he called them to be fellow labourers with him. The work is one of toil and sometimes hardship. The clouds and the rain may discourage going out into the fields; but it has to be done at the cost of present advantage and comfort. It may even entail the suffering of present loss for future gain" (John Carter, "Gospel of John" 72,73).