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#63 Closed Minds Close Hearts

Jesus’ heart aches when he hears about John.

He knows their disciples will not understand John’s call to martyrdom for the sake of thousands who will die for their faith. Some, in dungeons for years, will be comforted by the memory of John’s imprisonment and death.

Jesus takes John’s disciples to the desert to grieve.

Satan had schemed against John to discourage Jesus, but Jesus knows John is free from chains and pain—beyond Satan’s reach.

God knows that we wouldn’t choose to rewrite our stories, if we could see the end from the beginning as He does, and comprehend our glorious calling to help vindicate His character.

Now Jesus goes to the people in Galilee who are generally more receptive than the scholars and religious zealots. Jesus comes saying, “The kingdom of God is here; turn, see and believe the graciousness of your God.”

Ironically, those who studied the prophecies, mapping a timeline to Messiah, were the most closed. Jesus so loves the Jews and wants them to fulfill their privileged purpose.

They have studied Daniel’s prophecy,* but they haven’t understood Gabriel’s explanation:

“Four-hundred and ninety years are given to your people to accept their destiny… Understand that from the decree to rebuild Jerusalem, (457 BC)** until Messiah, shall be 483 years (27 AD—Jesus baptism). In the middle of the remaining seven, Messiah will be killed, not for himself…”***

God’s call to Jewish leaders included honoring them first to recognize God’s graciousness in Jesus, and have the privilege of presenting their Messiah to the world.
——————————————————————————–

Matthew 14:12-13, Mark 1:14-15, *Daniel 9:21-27, **Artaxerxes Longimanus gave the last decree to rebuild in 457 BC, Ezra 6:14, *** 69 prophetic weeks is the same as 483 years, one week is seven years (see one day = one year in prophecy, Numbers 14:34, Ezekiel 4:6)

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