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Friday, March 9 2012
Times And Seasons
The English word "time" originated from the same Anglo-Saxon root word as the English word "tide" ("the periodic rise and fall of the sea level under the gravitational pull of the moon"). Considering the "sea" in season, one might wonder if that word had the same or related meaning as time / tide, but "season" actually originated from a different word, the Old English word seson, which meant the time to sow.
The single English word "time" (or "times" in plural) is used to translate a number of different Hebrew and Greek words of the Holy Scriptures. As is often the case, translations commonly use a "one size fits all" (or "one meaning fits all") word for a surprising number of words that were originally written with an also-surprising variety of literal meanings.
A few examples of Hebrew words translated as "time" or "times":
A few examples of Greek words translated as "time" or "times":
As is the case with "time," the single English word "season" (or "seasons" in plural) is used to translate numerous Hebrew and Greek words of the Holy Scriptures.
A few examples of Hebrew words translated as "season" or "seasons":
A few examples of Greek words translated as "season" or "seasons":
King Solomon, while he had his great wisdom (ironically, in his case, there was "a time to be wise, and a time to be a fool"; see A History Of Jerusalem: The Glory Of Solomon) summed up the nature of physical life with his famous "To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven."
"3:1 To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven:
"To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven"
"Time" and "season" are used in two different ways in the Holy Bible, but they are similar in that both involve birth, physical or spiritual, with the due time determined by the LORD. Sarai (later renamed by the LORD as Sarah) knew that the LORD had delayed the "season" of her having children ("16:2 And Sarai said unto Abram, Behold now, the LORD hath restrained me from bearing" Genesis 16:2 KJV) to the point that she thought that she would never have children, but as she discovered, according to God's purpose, "Is any thing too hard for the LORD? At the time appointed I will return unto thee, according to the time of life, and Sarah shall have a son."
"18:9 And they said unto him, Where is Sarah thy wife?
There were actually a number of such incidents recorded in the Scriptures. A lesser known occurrence was with a faithful woman who assisted the prophet Elijah (whose name and purpose were later used generically for John the Baptist, "the Elijah to come" Matthew 11:12-14 KJV). While "verily she hath no child, and her husband is old," "the woman conceived, and bare a son at that season that Elisha had said unto her, according to the time of life." It wasn't just a matter that her husband was old - they had no children when they were young either. It was a miraculously-enabled natural conception.
"4:8 And it fell on a day, that Elisha passed to Shunem, where was a great woman; and she constrained him to eat bread. And so it was, that as oft as he passed by, he turned in thither to eat bread. 4:9 And she said unto her husband, Behold now, I perceive that this is an holy man of God, which passeth by us continually. 4:10 Let us make a little chamber, I pray thee, on the wall; and let us set for him there a bed, and a table, and a stool, and a candlestick: and it shall be, when he cometh to us, that he shall turn in thither.
Centuries later, John the Baptist, the "Elijah to come" was conceived in exactly the same way that Elijah had miraculously assisted the old couple in Shunem. Although John's father, a Temple Levite, stated that "I am an old man, and my wife well stricken in years," John was born in the due time that the LORD had decided.
"1:13 But the angel said unto him, Fear not, Zacharias: for thy prayer is heard; and thy wife Elisabeth shall bear thee a son, and thou shalt call his name John. 1:14 And thou shalt have joy and gladness; and many shall rejoice at his birth. 1:15 For he shall be great in the sight of the Lord, and shall drink neither wine nor strong drink; and he shall be filled with the Holy Ghost, even from his mother's womb. 1:16 And many of the children of Israel shall he turn to the Lord their God. 1:17 And he shall go before him in the spirit and power of Elias, to turn the hearts of the fathers to the children, and the disobedient to the wisdom of the just; to make ready a people prepared for the Lord.
John's mother Elizabeth was an older, married relative of Mary, an unmarried teenage virgin. Although the two examples we've covered were married women who were miraculously enabled to conceive in a natural way (i.e. the fathers were the biological fathers), the virgin Mary conceived with a greater miracle - but yet as a foremost example of how all of God's children (as we will explain further) are conceived by the Holy Spirit at the time of their conversion, and that God is the Father of all of humanity who choose not to abort their salvation by refusing to repent and grow in the way of righteousness.
"1:26 And in the sixth month the angel Gabriel was sent from God unto a city of Galilee, named Nazareth, 1:27 To a virgin espoused to a man whose name was Joseph, of the house of David; and the virgin's name was Mary. 1:28 And the angel came in unto her, and said, Hail, thou that art highly favoured, the Lord is with thee: blessed art thou among women.
The power of the LORD is absolute; along with all other things, as we've read "he changeth the times and the seasons" according to His Purpose.
"2:20 Daniel answered and said, Blessed be the name of God for ever and ever: for wisdom and might are his: 2:21 And he changeth the times and the seasons: he removeth kings, and setteth up kings: he giveth wisdom unto the wise, and knowledge to them that know understanding: 2:22 He revealeth the deep and secret things: he knoweth what is in the darkness, and the light dwelleth with him." (Daniel 2:20-22 KJV)
Many people incorrectly think that they are "born again" now (see the Fact Finder question below), far out of "due season" (as declared by the LORD; see When And Where Your Eternal Life Will Begin and The Eighth Day: What Does It Mean?) because they have been deceived by a great false church (and its "protestant" daughters who have kept the same false doctrines) that proclaims itself with the power to change times and seasons. As quoted above, Daniel described how the LORD rightfully does it. Daniel also described how the religious frauds have done it - and their coming fate for doing so.
"7:25 And he shall speak great words against the most High, and shall wear out the saints of the most High, and think to change times and laws: and they shall be given into his hand until a time and times and the dividing of time. 7:26 But the judgment shall sit, and they shall take away his dominion, to consume and to destroy it unto the end." (Daniel 7:25-26 KJV)
The Messiah never "set dates" for His return. Quite the contrary, He commanded His people, "It is not for you to know the times or the seasons, which the Father hath put in his own power." Those who claim to know the time of Christ's return are not only claiming something that Christ Himself said that He doesn't know, but they are attempting to put themselves in place of God.
"1:1 The former treatise have I made, O Theophilus, of all that Jesus began both to do and teach, 1:2 Until the day in which he was taken up, after that he through the Holy Ghost had given commandments unto the apostles whom he had chosen: 1:3 To whom also he showed himself alive after his passion by many infallible proofs, being seen of them forty days, and speaking of the things pertaining to the kingdom of God: 1:4 And, being assembled together with them, commanded them that they should not depart from Jerusalem, but wait for the promise of the Father, which, saith he, ye have heard of me. 1:5 For John truly baptized with water; but ye shall be baptized with the Holy Ghost not many days hence.
The apostle Paul never "set dates," but also warned that the return will seem to happen to all who reach the end of their physical life, because the dead have no sense of the passage of time to the future time, as decided by God alone, when the resurrection will occur (see Could Christ Return Tonight? and the Fact Finder question below).
"5:1 But of the times and the seasons, brethren, ye have no need that I write unto you. 5:2 For yourselves know perfectly that the day of the Lord so cometh as a thief in the night. 5:3 For when they shall say, Peace and safety; then sudden destruction cometh upon them, as travail upon a woman with child; and they shall not escape." (1 Thessalonians 5:1-3 KJV)
Being "born again" isn't merely a fantasy in this physical life; it will occur "in due season" at the future resurrection (again, see the Fact Finder question below that covers, from the Bible, what "born again" and the famous "John 3:16" really mean).
"3:5 Jesus answered, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God. 3:6 That which is born of the flesh is flesh; and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit. 3:7 Marvel not that I said unto thee, Ye must be born again. 3:8 The wind bloweth where it listeth, and thou hearest the sound thereof, but canst not tell whence it cometh, and whither it goeth: so is every one that is born of the Spirit." (John 3:5-8 KJV)
Like crops that are sown in different times and seasons, and are harvested in their due season (e.g. the calling to repentance before or after the return of Jesus Christ, and the resurrection/change to salvation on the day of Christ's return or at the end of the 1,000 years - again see When And Where Your Eternal Life Will Begin and The Eighth Day: What Does It Mean?), salvation is being accomplished according the "due times and seasons" that have been declared by God.
"24:32 Now learn a parable of the fig tree; When his branch is yet tender, and putteth forth leaves, ye know that summer is nigh: 24:33 So likewise ye, when ye shall see all these things, know that it is near, even at the doors. 24:34 Verily I say unto you, This generation shall not pass, till all these things be fulfilled. 24:35 Heaven and earth shall pass away, but my words shall not pass away.
Fact Finder: When will humans be "born again"? What was the full teaching of "John 3:16"?
This Day In History, March 9
141 BC: Liu Che, known as Emperor Wu of Han, assumed the throne of the Han Dynasty of China.
632: The last public sermon of Muhammad, the founder of his religion of Islam (see A History Of Jerusalem: Constantine and Muhammad).
1074: Pope Gregory VII excommunicated all married Roman Catholic priests.
1230: Bulgarian tsar Ivan Asen II defeated Theodore of Epirus at the Battle of Klokotnitsa.
1276: Augsburg became an Imperial Free City.
1496: Jews were expelled from Carintha, Austria.
1796: Napoleon Bonaparte married Josephine de Beauharnais, widow of a French officer who was executed during the revolution.
1812: Swedish Pomerania was taken by Napoleon.
1831: The French Foreign Legion was founded in Algeria by King Louis Philippe.
1873: The Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) was established.
1888: Wilhelm I, Emperor of Germany and King of Prussia from 1861, died.
1916: Pancho Villa and 1,500 Mexican cavalry troops raided New Mexico.
1933: State Police ("Gestapo" is the German abbreviation for "the State Police") in Nazi Germany opened the Dachau concentration camp, near Munich.
1936: The German press warned that all Jews who voted in the upcoming elections would be arrested.
1945: The Bombing of Tokyo by the U.S. Army Air Force began; it became one of the most destructive bombing raids in history.
1961: The Russian Sputnik 9 carried a dog into orbit.
1968: General William Westmoreland requested 206,000 more U.S. troops to become involved in the Vietnam civil war (earlier French imperialism in southeast Asia resulted in the ancient nation of Vietnam being divided into North and South Vietnam, a foreign-imposed partition of the Vietnamese people that did not end until the early 1970s after the U.S. had involved itself in the Vietnamese civil conflict for over a decade).
1986: U.S. Navy divers found the crew compartment of the space shuttle Challenger, along with the remains of the astronauts, nearly 6 weeks after the disaster.
1992: Former Israeli Prime Minister Menachem Begin died at age 78. He and President Anwar Sadat of Egypt were awarded the Nobel peace prize in 1978 for the Camp David Peace Accord.
1995: A Canadian Coast Guard ship fired upon and arrested the fleeing Spanish ship Estai after pursuing it out into international waters off the Grand Banks of Newfoundland. The Spanish ship was observed violating Canadian law within Canadian waters; as well, a Canadian Navy submarine later recovered the net that the Spanish ship cut while being pursued and found it to have an illegal small-mesh liner that was "vacuuming the ocean" of fish of all sizes, thereby exterminating future fish stocks. The seizure of the Spanish ship and its crew led to weeks of political tension and an escalating high-seas warship standoff between Canada and the rising-superpower European Union (which forced Britain to chose between its European Union membership and "the Canadians that have always been there for us during two world wars" - to which the British government chose Canada; as well, during the crisis hundreds of British fishing boats flew Canadian flags while working off the coast of Europe).
1997: A solar eclipse permitted people in China, Mongolia and eastern Siberia to see the Hale-Bopp Comet during the day.
2010: The first homosexual "marriages" in Washington, D.C. were conducted.
2011: The Space Shuttle Discovery made its final landing after 39 flights.