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Saturday, February 20 2016
Zechariah 10: The Former Rain And The Latter Rain
"If ye shall hearken diligently unto My Commandments which I command you this day, to love the LORD your God, and to serve Him with all your heart and with all your soul, That I will give you the rain of your land in his due season, the first rain and the latter rain, that thou mayest gather in thy corn, and thy wine, and thine oil. And I will send grass in thy fields for thy cattle, that thou mayest eat and be full"
From the agricultural perspective of the land of Israel, "the former rain, and the latter rain" were seasonal rains that in turn coincided with the time of planting, and then, as the crops were reaching maturity for harvest. Both rains were vital to the nation.
The rains in their due seasons were one of the promises made by the LORD (see The Identity Of The LORD God and The LORD God Our Saviour) to the people of Israel if they obeyed Him (see also When Will The Prophecy Of Israel Be Fulfilled? and the Fact Finder question below).
"11:8 Therefore shall ye keep all the commandments which I command you this day, that ye may be strong, and go in and possess the land, whither ye go to possess it; 11:9 And that ye may prolong your days in the land, which the LORD sware unto your fathers to give unto them and to their seed, a land that floweth with milk and honey.
Along with the promise of blessings for obedience, the Israelites were warned of the LORD's corrective wrath for those who were lured into Satan's loser ways (see Where Did True and False Prophets Originate?).
"11:16 Take heed to yourselves, that your heart be not deceived, and ye turn aside, and serve other gods, and worship them;
Just as the northern Kingdom of Israel had done before them (see The Politics And Religion Of The Lost Ten Tribes and How Did Israel Separate Itself From The Messianic King?), the Kingdom of Judah corrupted themselves - to which the LORD withdrew his blessings from them too.
"3:3 Therefore the showers have been withholden, and there hath been no latter rain; and thou hadst a whore's forehead, thou refusedst to be ashamed." (Jeremiah 3:3 KJV)
By the time of Zechariah, the people of Judah had destroyed their kingdom by their unfaithfulness to the LORD. While their return after the seventy years exile was a "replanting," they later repeated, and then repeated again, the same forsaking of the LORD's Word. All of the prophets were however also prophets of the time when, after the LORD's return, the people of Judah, and all of Israel, and all of humanity, will know the blessings of the LORD - when they truly know Him (see the Fact Finder question below). Then, "Ask ye of the LORD rain in the time of the latter rain; so the LORD shall make bright clouds, and give them showers of rain, to every one grass in the field. For the idols have spoken vanity, and the diviners have seen a lie, and have told false dreams; they comfort in vain: therefore they went their way as a flock, they were troubled, because there was no shepherd."
"10:1 Ask ye of the LORD rain in the time of the latter rain; so the LORD shall make bright clouds, and give them showers of rain, to every one grass in the field.
Fact Finder: How are the true Gospel and the true Christian Holy Days like seasonal harvests that are made to grow with "living waters"?
This Day In History, February 20
1339: The Battle of Parabiago between the Milanese army and the St. George's (San Giorgio) Mercenaries of Lodrisio Visconti.
1547: Edward VI was crowned King of England at Westminster Abbey.
1579: Sir Nicholas Bacon died at age 70. He was a high official in the government of Queen Elizabeth I (reigned 1558-1603) and the father of the philosopher Francis Bacon.
1685: Rene-Robert Cavelier established Fort St. Louis (St. Louis was named after French King Louis IX), thereby establishing the "New France" claim to Texas.
1653: During the first English-Dutch War, the Dutch fleet under Van Tromp fought the British at the Battle of Portland.
1707: Aurangzeb died at age 89. He was the last of the great Mughal emperors of India (1658-1707). Under him the Mughal empire reached its greatest extent, although his policies helped lead to its end.
1790: Holy Roman emperor Joseph II died at age 49 (see The Holy Roman Empire Of The German Nation).
1811: Austria declared itself bankrupt.
1831: Polish revolutionaries defeated the Russians at the Battle of Growchow.
1862: William Lincoln, age 11, son of President Abraham Lincoln, died at the White House.
1895: Frederick Douglas, escaped slave and U.S. antislavery leader, died at age 78.
1920: At the end of the First World War (listen to our Sermon The European World Wars), when Britain inherited the Middle East nations that had been under the Ottoman Empire for centuries (see A History Of Jerusalem: The British Mandate and listen to our Sermon The Ottoman Empire), Britain recognized the government of Trans-Jordan (listen to our Sermon The Balfour Declaration).
1938: British Foreign Minister Anthony Eden resigned in protest because of Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain's appeasement of Adolf Hitler (see Presidential Quotes On War, Terrorism, Religion).
1943: During the Second World War, U.S. movie studio executives agreed to allow the Office of War Information to censor movies and integrate nationalistic and political propaganda in "entertainment" films (a practice that has never stopped).
1947: Louis Mountbatten was appointed the last British Viceroy of India.
1959: "Black Friday" for the Canadian aviation industry of the 1950s. Prime Minister John Diefenbaker ended the CF-105 Arrow project. Built in Toronto by Avro Canada, the delta-winged interceptor Arrow was one of the fastest, most advanced fighters in human history (Mach 2 at altitude of 50,000 feet). Fighter aircraft designed and built over 50 years later (including the McDonnell-Douglas F-15 and F-18, both of which are slower and have a lower maximum operational height than the Arrow) are still inferior to the Arrow in some performance characteristics. When the Arrow was canceled, many of the Canadian Arrow engineers found work at NASA where elements of Arrow design and technology were used in the U.S. Space Shuttle.
1962: John Glenn became the second U.S. astronaut in space (after Alan Shepherd in May 1961) and the first U.S. astronaut to orbit the earth. Although almost totally ignored and unreported by the U.S. news media (leaving many of the U.S. population with a very limited and distorted view of history and present-day reality), Russian cosmonaut Yuri Gagarin was actually the first man in space, in April 1961.
1965: Charles Woolley died at age 80. The British archaeologist spent over 40 years in the field; he excavated Ur of the Chaldees (birthplace of Abraham; see The Journey From Ur Of The Chaldees) and discovered the ancient Sumerian civilization.
1984: Harris Shoerats, the oldest man in Britain, died at age 111.
1986: The Soviet space station Mir was launched into Earth orbit.
1990: Soviet Parliamentary leaders proposed a draft law which would allow the republics the right to break away from the Soviet Union.
2005: Spain became the first European nation to hold a referendum on ratification of the Constitution of the European Union.