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Lesson # Luke 3:1-2
Study Material - Luke 3:1-2
You must be in fellowship prior to your Bible study, so that the spiritual information you receive can become a source, of blessing to your soul and produce spiritual growth.
1 Now in the fifteenth year of the reign of Tiberius Caesar, when Pontius Pilate was governor of Judea, and Herod was tetrarch of Galilee, and his brother Philip was tetrarch of the region of Ituraea and Trachonitis, and Lysanias was tetrarch of Abilene, 2 in the high priesthood of Annas and Caiaphas, the word of God came to John, the son of Zacharias, in the wilderness.
John the Baptist was announced prior to his birth, but no one took notice. Only the miracle of the pregnancy of his mother in her latter years was noticed and celebrated. Then John was lost to the wilderness of the world. The world being caught up in its own priorities which exclude God.
Now the date of John's appearance is marked exactly. The fifteenth year of the Caesar, Tiberius. Who was the third in the line of 12. Israel is now firmly under the control of outsiders. Having permanently lost its right to rule itself. Its heyday of David and Solomon is long gone. The foundation upon which David and Solomon attained their greatness has been long forgotten. They relied on God, but the leadership now relies on their political aspirations, using God and the temple as a controlling device to guide the general population to their selfish wishes.
They have not learned anything. They were conquered long ago by various foreign powers, but retained some self rule even though they were puppets of foreign governments, but now they have lost it all. They scepter has departed and the Savior will now appear as stated in Gen. 49:10, and this occurred in the year of the birth of Christ, the first year of the tax census when all of Israel came under the final control of Rome, which had conquered it several decades before.
But now a second announcement is about to be made, and then a third announcement. John and then Christ.
Tiberius was a bad man. A drunkard and cruel. This is the level to which the nation has sunk. A nation without doctrine, a people without any spiritual resources, will fall into a pit and won't even recognize their predicament until it is too late. Even after the Cross, and some 40 years later after intense evangelization the country will in their stubbornness be swept away by the legions of Rome, and swept to the four corners of the world.
Under Tiberius, was the Governor, Pontius Pilate who was later sent off to Rome to answer for his evil actions. The underlings, Herod and Philip, had rulership over lessor territories within the nation. Herod the Great who died some years prior had his rule divided up into four regions which indicates the attempt of Rome to limit the amount of control any one person could have in the land. This was a distrustful age and a wicked age. All leaders were foreigners indicating the total loss of self rule for Israel.
God had commanded only one high priest at a time, but here we have listed two, Annas and Caiaphas. We have only one high priest and that is Jesus Christ. For centuries the scriptures so directed this practice as an point of doctrine which they Israelites did not learn. After Malachi had made his last writing and the Old Testament was closed about 400 years earlier, the priesthood fell to an all time low, splintering off into different factions, the Pharisees, the Saducees and several other groups. They claimed the Mosaic Law as their foundation, but they distorted it into their own kind of theology. A priesthood which was convenient to them.
Then the word of God came to John. Gods instructions come from heaven. Today we have the Bible, the closed canon of scripture, which is our only source of divine revelation. God no longer talks to people directly or through dreams and such, Heb. 1. But John had been placed on hold and John was contacted at the proper time, by God. He did not think up this plan on his own, but studies doctrine with a passion until called by God.
The political leaders and the religious leadership looked to themselves for guidance. They practiced deception and ruthlessness in order to gain their lustful desires, John waited and studied while he waited. And God called him out in accordance to Gods timing. John certainly was aware of the times and the evil which surrounded him. He knew that Jesus was near and could have gone off and tried to convince everyone of Jesus' existence and even gone to his home. He could have lead a great march on the capital, but he did none of these things. God is aware of the circumstances in this world. Nothing takes God by surprise. Jesus Christ controls history and He does things in accordance with His will and for our benefit. He does not do things on a whim.
John waited on God and then took action when called. John was prepared through his study. God uses prepared believers, not half cocked and emotional do gooders who want to change the world, which they cannot. You too can become a tool of God with your attainment of spiritual growth to maturity. You probably will not make it into the history books, nor the front pages of newspapers, nor into the high circles of government, but God sees you and you, as a mature believer are the real hero of this planet earth. God honors those who honor Him. You honor God by doing just what you are doing now, studying and learning His Word. Remaining in fellowship as you learn and grow and then applying Bible doctrine to your daily life.
Now is the time to post a prayer.
End Of Lesson
Study to show thyself approved (mature) unto God, a workman that needs not to be ashamed, rightly dividing (studying/discerning), the Word of truth.
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