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Tuesday, March 15 2016
Matthew 16: The Sign Cover Up
"They gave large money unto the soldiers, Saying, Say ye, His disciples came by night, and stole him away while we slept ... So they took the money, and did as they were taught: and this saying is commonly reported among the Jews until this day"
The Messiah's Ministry had begun with miraculous power for all to see (see Feeding The Hungry, Walking On Water). And yet the religious "authorities" came to Him and demanded a "sign." His answer, to the unbelievers, was specific to the unbelievers: "A wicked and adulterous generation seeketh after a sign; and there shall no sign be given unto it, but the sign of the prophet Jonas."
"16:1 The Pharisees also with the Sadducees came, and tempting desired him that he would shew them a sign from heaven.
It was not the first time that the Messiah made that declaration to them. He had stated it to them earlier, as His Ministry had just begun, before the martyrdom of John the Baptist (see How Did The Messiah Free John The Baptist From Prison?). Notice that the incident quoted above is recorded as chapter 16. The Messiah had already said it to them, as quoted below, in chapter 12. John the Baptist was martyred, as recorded in chapter 14 - between them. The scribes and the Pharisees knew what the sign to them would be.
"12:38 Then certain of the scribes and of the Pharisees answered, saying, Master, we would see a sign from thee. 12:39 But he answered and said unto them, An evil and adulterous generation seeketh after a sign; and there shall no sign be given to it, but the sign of the prophet Jonas: 12:40 For as Jonas was three days and three nights in the whale's belly; so shall the Son of man be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth. 12:41 The men of Nineveh shall rise in judgment with this generation, and shall condemn it: because they repented at the preaching of Jonas; and, behold, a greater than Jonas is here. 12:42 The queen of the south shall rise up in the judgment with this generation, and shall condemn it: for she came from the uttermost parts of the earth to hear the wisdom of Solomon; and, behold, a greater than Solomon is here." (Matthew 12:38-42 KJV)
After the Messiah's Crucifixion and entombment (see The Day That The Messiah Was Crucified and The First Day In The Tomb On The Passover High Day), the chief priests and the Pharisees knew what the Messiah had told them was going to happen - His resurrection after 3 days and 3 nights. In their stubborn, stiff-necked refusal to believe, they had guards posted at the Tomb so that the only way out was by a Resurrection. But in their unbelief of the resurrection, they were going to provide the incontrovertible proof that the resurrection wasn't faked.
"27:62 Now the next day, that followed the day of the preparation, the chief priests and Pharisees came together unto Pilate, 27:63 Saying, Sir, we remember that that deceiver said, while he was yet alive, After three days I will rise again. 27:64 Command therefore that the sepulchre be made sure until the third day, lest his disciples come by night, and steal him away, and say unto the people, He is risen from the dead: so the last error shall be worse than the first. 27:65 Pilate said unto them, Ye have a watch: go your way, make it as sure as ye can. 27:66 So they went, and made the sepulchre sure, sealing the stone, and setting a watch." (Matthew 27:62-66 KJV)
When the resurrection happened, as the fulfilled prophesied sign to them (see Jonah: Three Days And Three Nights), as witnessed by the guards themselves ("some of the watch came into the city, and shewed unto the chief priests all the things that were done"), the religious "authorities" then knowingly and deliberately conspired a plot to cover up the resurrection. They bribed the guards to say that the Body had been stolen while they were asleep on guard duty - a death penalty offense in the Roman army, except that the religious "authorities" also bribed the governor to ignore it ("If this come to the governor's ears, we will persuade him, and secure you").
"28:11 Now when they were going, behold, some of the watch came into the city, and shewed unto the chief priests all the things that were done. 28:12 And when they were assembled with the elders, and had taken counsel, they gave large money unto the soldiers, 28:13 Saying, Say ye, His disciples came by night, and stole him away while we slept. 28:14 And if this come to the governor's ears, we will persuade him, and secure you. 28:15 So they took the money, and did as they were taught: and this saying is commonly reported among the Jews until this day." (Matthew 27:62-66 KJV)
It was primarily for that reason that the Messiah often went to places that were not under the mind control of the religious "authorities" - where the crowds followed Him because they had faith (see also The Salt Of The Earth and Light Of The World Prophecy).
"16:5 And when his disciples were come to the other side, they had forgotten to take bread. 16:6 Then Jesus said unto them, Take heed and beware of the leaven of the Pharisees and of the Sadducees.
The Messiah often went to Lebanon and other borderland areas north of Galilee, such as Caesarea Philippi.
"16:13 When Jesus came into the coasts of Caesarea Philippi, he asked his disciples, saying, Whom do men say that I the Son of man am?
The twelve at first also denied that the Messiah would be killed - not because they were religious frauds like the "authorities," but because they saw the Messiah as a King who would lead a revolution and establish the Kingdom of the LORD then. Notice that the Messiah's rebuke of Peter was actually a rebuke of Satan because during the "temptation of Christ" the Devil had offered the Messiah "all of the kingdoms of this world" (see Showdown In The Wilderness). But the coming Kingdom of God will not be established by man-made religions and politics (see the Fact Finder question below).
"16:21 From that time forth began Jesus to shew unto his disciples, how that he must go unto Jerusalem, and suffer many things of the elders and chief priests and scribes, and be killed, and be raised again the third day.
This Day In History, March 15
44 BC: Julius Caesar was assassinated (stabbed 23 times while entering the Roman Senate) by Senators led by Brutus (Marcus Junius Brutus) and Cassius (Gaius Cassius Longinus). The date has become known as the "Ides of March" (Latin Idus Martii). The term ides was used for the 15th day of the Roman months of March, May, July and October, and the 13th day of the other months (see The Politics Of Rome and A History Of Jerusalem: Pompey And The Caesars; also How Did Rome Change True Time?).
351: Constantius II proclaimed his cousin Gallus to Emperor of the Eastern part of the then in-decline Roman Empire - which was superseded by Germany (see The Holy Roman Empire Of The German Nation).
493: Odoacer, the German conqueror of the West Roman empire (see The Holy Roman Empire Of The German Nation), was assassinated by Theodoric, who split him in two from shoulder to waist with a broad sword.
933: Henry the Fowler defeated the raiding Magyars at Merseburg, Germany.
1341: During the Hundred Years War, an alliance was made between Roman Emperor Louis IV and King Philip VI of France.
1493: Christopher Columbus arrived back in Spain after his first voyage to the "New World." Despite popular myth and propaganda, all of the four voyages of Columbus to "America" were actually only to the islands of the Caribbean Sea - Columbus never set foot on what today calls itself "America" (see the Christopher Columbus map at Thanksgiving In History and Prophecy).
The Vikings arrived on the east coast of North America, in what is today Newfoundland, Canada, about 5 centuries before Columbus was born.
1545: The first session of the Council of Trent began.
1603: French explorer Samuel de Champlain set out on his first voyage to what is now eastern Canada. He established friendly relations with the natives and explored the St. Lawrence River to the rapids above Montreal. He returned several times, and was made the first governor of "New France" in 1632 (see Thanksgiving In History and Prophecy).
1672: King Charles II of England issued the Royal Declaration of Indulgence that declared freedom of religion to non-Anglican Protestants and members of the Church of Rome.
1744: During the War of the Austrian Succession, France declared war on England.
1827: The University of Toronto was chartered.
1888: The Anglo-Tibetan War of 1888 began.
1906: Rolls-Royce was incorporated.
1916: Woodrow Wilson sent 4,800 troops over the U.S.-Mexico border to pursue Pancho Villa.
1917: Tsar Nicholas II of Russia abdicated the Russian throne; his brother became then Tsar.
1922: After Egypt was granted independence from the United Kingdom (see A History Of Jerusalem: The British Mandate), the Sultan of Egypt assumed the title of King Fuad I.
1939: German troops occupied Czechoslovakia.
1957: Britain became the 3rd nation to explode a nuclear bomb.
1985: The first Internet domain name was registered (symbolics.com).
1990: Iraq executed, by hanging, a British-based journalist for London's Observer newspaper after being accused of espionage.
1991: 4 Los Angeles police were charged with beating Rodney King, an incident that set off major riots in the city.
1998: Edwin Shoemaker died at age 90. He was the inventor of the "La-Z-Boy" (plushly padded rocking and swivel) chair. He died in one while taking a nap.
2004: French President Jacques Chirac signed the law on (in English) "secularity and conspicuous religious symbols in schools," commonly known as the headscarf ban.