Christian

Where Do You Turn?

See to it that no one takes you captive through hollow and deceptive philosophy, which depends on human tradition and the basic principles of this world. (Colossians 2:8, NIV 1984)

My Musings – Where do you go for the truth, when there is so much misinformation that masquerades as the truth? What “authority” can you rely on, when the authority’s credentials are often fabricated? It is way too easy to be taken “captive through hollow and deceptive philosophy.” One does need a standard to measure the people and information that self-proclaims the “truth.” A standard that has never varied with “human tradition and the basic principles of this world.

Here’s a hint: it’s not google. There is some gold out there, but how can one distinguish it from the “fool’s” gold? Often, it is not even the latest scientific “findings.” You cannot follow the science, when the science is following the money. And even if it is not following the money, it’s all too often following a pre-conceived bias. Sometimes unintentional, but frequently intentionally. The news sources. It not hard to see which way the wind is blowing (from the left or the right). Political leaders? Puh-leeze! So many have lost all credibility.

My Advice – Turn to God. But you have to open your Bible. You have to spend some time on your “knees.” You have to spend time with other like-minded believers. Not just socially, but in church and in small groups. You need to be discipled by a trustworthy disciple-maker. 

“Do your best to present yourself to God as one approved, a workman who does not need to be ashamed and who correctly handles the word of truth.” (2 Timothy 2:14–15, NIV 1984). Correctly handling the word of truth will enable you discern what are “deceptive [philosophies], which [depend] on human tradition and the basic principles of this world.” No longer to be taken captive by them.

Today’s post was written by Steve Brewer, one of my favorite bloggers. Visit thebrewisamusing.com for daily inspiration from God’s Word. You’ll be glad you did!

Love, Cindy

Do you want to know more about Jesus? See my page Who Is Jesus?

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Christian

Friday’s Verse, 12/2/22

 “For God says, “At just the right time, I heard you.
    On the day of salvation, I helped you.” Indeed, the “right time” is now. Today is the day of salvation.” 2 Corinthians 6:2 NLT (emphasis mine) Read full chapter

Do you want to know more about Jesus? See my page Who Is Jesus?

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Christian

Verse for Meditation, 12/1/22

“The Spirit Whom He has caused to dwell in us yearns over us and He yearns for the Spirit [to be welcome] with a jealous love…” James 4:5 AMPC (emphasis mine) Read full chapter

Love, Cindy

Do you want to know more about Jesus? See my page Who Is Jesus?

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Christian

Quote of the Week, 11/30/22

“If the Bible is truly God’s Word, then we should cherish it, study it, obey it, and fully trust it. If the Bible is truly the Word of God, then it is the final authority for all matters of faith, practice, and morality. If the Bible is the Word of God, then to dismiss it is to dismiss God Himself.”

GOTQUESTIONS.ORG

Love, Cindy

Do you want to know more about Jesus? Read my page Who Is Jesus?

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Christian

Tuesday’s Verse, 11/29/22

“The revelation from Jesus Christ, which God gave him to show his servants what must soon take place. He made it known by sending his angel to his servant John, who testifies to everything he saw—that is, the word of God and the testimony of Jesus Christ. Blessed is the one who reads aloud the words of this prophecy, and blessed are those who hear it and take to heart what is written in it, because the time is near.” Revelation 1:1-3 NIV Read full chapter

Do you want to know more about Jesus? See my page Who Is Jesus?

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Christian

Monday’s Verse, 11/28/22

“But do not forget this one thing, dear friends: With the Lord a day is like a thousand years, and a thousand years are like a day.  The Lord is not slow in keeping his promise, as some understand slowness. Instead he is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance.” 2 Peter 3:8-9 NIV Read full chapter

Do you want to know more about Jesus? See my page Who Is Jesus?

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Sunday’s Memory Verse, 11/27/22

“The Lord delights in those who fear him,
    who put their hope in his unfailing love.” Psalm 147:11 NIV

Do you want to know more about Jesus? See my page Who Is Jesus?

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The Babylonian Exile: Fitting the Pieces Together

You are probably familiar with the stories of Queen Esther, Nehemiah rebuilding the wall, Daniel in the lions’ den, King Nebuchadnezzar, and other Old Testament figures. But how do these stories relate to each other?

The story of the Jews who were exiled to Babylon and then returned to Jerusalem can be confusing. At least it was to me. I had a lot of pieces to the puzzle, but I didn’t know how they fit together. So I did a little research and came up with a timeline and a summary that can help us fit the pieces together.

In order to get a better grasp of the timeline, I have renamed the years. I have called 606 BC (the date the first exiles were taken to Babylon) Year 1. You will see that 161 years will pass before the third wave of exiles returns to Jerusalem.

Babylonian Exile Timeline

606 BC (Year 1)   Nebuchadnezzar, King of Babylon, besieges Jerusalem. Daniel and Judean nobles are exiled to Babylon.

586 BC (Year 20) Jerusalem is destroyed by the Babylonians. Solomon’s Temple is destroyed.

539 BC (Year 67) Cyrus, King of Persia, conquers the Babylonian Empire

537 BC (Year 69) The 1st group of exiles returns to Jerusalem with Zerubbabel. 42,360 exiles return (plus slaves and singers) – a small remnant.

520 BC (Year 86) The Temple is completed.

486-465 BC (Years 120-141) Xerxes is King of Persia. He makes Esther the new queen.

458 BC (Year 148) The 2nd group of exiles returns to Jerusalem with Ezra. Artaxerxes is the King of Persia. Only 1,754 exiles return.

445 BC (Year 161) The 3rd group of exiles returns with Nehemiah to restore the walls. The walls were restored in 52 days.

 Summary

In 606 BC, the deportation of Judean nobles to Babylon begins. This group included Daniel, Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego. The people of Judah were not exiled all at once but were taken captive over a period of several years. Twenty years after the first captives were taken, Jerusalem and the Temple were completely destroyed by the Babylonians.

Sixty-seven years after the first exiles were taken to Babylon, Cyrus, King of Persia conquered the Babylonian empire. Only two years after he became king, he allowed the exiles to return to Jerusalem. A small remnant of 42,360 people returned to Jerusalem with Zerubbabel to rebuild the Temple.

First, they rebuilt the altar. Then they began to rebuild the temple, but opposition stopped the building for about 16 years. Rebuked and encouraged by the prophets Haggai and Zechariah, the people finally completed the construction of the Temple.

About 79 years after the first group of exiles returned to Jerusalem, a second group returned with Ezra, the priest. Only 1,754 returned this time. The new Persian King is Artaxerxes, son of Xerxes and Vashti. Vashti was the queen before Esther.

Meanwhile, in Jerusalem, the Israelites have taken foreign wives. Ezra leads the people to cry out for forgiveness and mercy. They turned from their wicked ways.

Thirteen years after the second wave of exiles returned, the third wave of exiles returned with Nehemiah. Nehemiah’s mission was to restore the walls and gates. They accomplished this in 52 days. It had been 161 years since the first group of captives was taken to Babylon!

Sources:

Jeremiah Study Bible

Old Testament books of 2 Kings, 2 Chronicles, Ezekiel, Jeremiah, Ezra, Nehemiah, Esther, Daniel, Haggai, and Zechariah

The Babylonian Captivity

GotQuestions.org

Photos from Google Images

Love, Cindy

Do you want to know more about Jesus? See my page Who Is Jesus?

realchristianwomen.blog  

Christian

Friday’s Verse, 11/25/22

“Surely the righteous will never be shaken;
    they will be remembered forever.
 They will have no fear of bad news;
    their hearts are steadfast, trusting in the Lord.” Psalm 112:6-7 NIV

Do you want to know more about Jesus? See my page Who Is Jesus?

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Verses for Meditation, 11/24/22

“Whom have I in heaven but you?
    And earth has nothing I desire besides you.
 My flesh and my heart may fail,
    but God is the strength of my heart
    and my portion forever.” Psalm 73: 25-26 NIV

Do you want to know more about Jesus? See my page Who Is Jesus?

Photo by Simon Maage on Unsplash

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