In the Beginning

The Minor Prophets — Part 2

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While their messages were generally shorter, the last 12 prophets of the Old Testament were anything but minor. Their prophecies speak of the punishment due to Judah and the surrounding nations because of their idolatry and unrighteousness. They describe aspects of the great trouble or shaking that God will use to bring this present evil world to an end. They prophesy about the building of God’s spiritual temple (Christ and the church) during the Gospel age, the coming of the Messiah, and the blessings that the Messiah and the temple will bring to Judah and all mankind after the trouble.

Here, we focus on the messages from the prophets Micah, Nahum, Habakkuk, Zephaniah, Haggai, Zechariah, and Malachi.

The first article, “The Poetic Prophet,” looks at the last portion of Micah’s prophecy and how its poetry describes God’s coming blessings for Israel and all mankind.

“Nahum’s Prophecy for Our Day” examines how his prophecy describes God’s then-future punishment of Nineveh and His preparations for the time of trouble and Armageddon.

The third article, “Habakkuk, the Unknown Prophet,” focuses on the two questions that the prophet asked God, and God’s responses: (1) Why does the evil in Judah go unpunished, and (2) How can a just God use the wicked Babylonians to punish Judah, a people more righteous than they? God’s answer should satisfy us.

“Zephaniah and a Pure Language” looks into the warnings Zephaniah wrote regarding Judah, Philistia, the Ethiopians, and Assyria, and how these warnings may have motivated King Josiah’s reforms in Judah.

The next article, “I Will Fill This House with Glory,” reviews Haggai’s encouragement to the Jews to finish rebuilding God’s house in Jerusalem and how this pictures the building of God’s spiritual temple, Christ and the church, during the Gospel Age.

“Zechariah’s Eight Night Visions” reviews how these visions picture various features of God’s divine plan of the ages and its ultimate goal, the peaceable kingdom of righteousness.

The final article, “I Have Loved You! Did You Forget?,” looks at God’s conversation with Israel regarding their waywardness. Malachi also prophesied about the coming Messiah who would purify the sons of Levi (Jesus’ followers during the Gospel Age), and bring healing to the nations in his earthly kingdom.

May the articles of this issue help each of us gain a better appreciation of the lives, and for the messages, of these prophets of God.

Categories: 2018-May/June

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