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First Reading: Isaiah Chapter 18 and 19 and 20
1 Ah, the land of the rustling of wings, which is beyond the rivers of Ethiopia;
2 that sendeth ambassadors by the sea, even in vessels of papyrus upon the waters, `saying', Go, ye swift messengers, to a nation tall and smooth, to a people terrible from their beginning onward, a nation that meteth out and treadeth down, whose land the rivers divide!
3 All ye inhabitants of the world, and ye dwellers on the earth, when an ensign is lifted up on the mountains, see ye; and when the trumpet is blown, hear ye.
4 For thus hath Jehovah said unto me, I will be still, and I will behold in my dwelling-place, like clear heat in sunshine, like a cloud of dew in the heat of harvest.
5 For before the harvest, when the blossom is over, and the flower becometh a ripening grape, he will cut off the sprigs with pruning-hooks, and the spreading branches will he take away `and' cut down.
6 They shall be left together unto the ravenous birds of the mountains, and to the beasts of the earth; and the ravenous birds shall summer upon them, and all the beasts of the earth shall winter upon them.
7 In that time shall a present be brought unto Jehovah of hosts `from' a people tall and smooth, even from a people terrible from their beginning onward, a nation that meteth out and treadeth down, whose land the rivers divide, to the place of the name of Jehovah of hosts, the mount Zion.
1 The burden of Egypt. Behold, Jehovah rideth upon a swift cloud, and cometh unto Egypt: and the idols of Egypt shall tremble at his presence; and the heart of Egypt shall melt in the midst of it.
2 And I will stir up the Egyptians against the Egyptians: and they shall fight every one against his brother, and every one against his neighbor; city against city, `and' kingdom against kingdom.
3 And the spirit of Egypt shall fail in the midst of it; and I will destroy the counsel thereof: and they shall seek unto the idols, and to the charmers, and to them that have familiar spirits, and to the wizards.
4 And I will give over the Egyptians into the hand of a cruel lord; and a fierce king shall rule over them, saith the Lord, Jehovah of hosts.
5 And the waters shall fail from the sea, and the river shall be wasted and become dry.
6 And the rivers shall become foul; the streams of Egypt shall be diminished and dried up; the reeds and flags shall wither away.
7 The meadows by the Nile, by the brink of the Nile, and all the sown fields of the Nile, shall become dry, be driven away, and be no more.
8 And the fishers shall lament, and all they that cast angle into the Nile shall mourn, and they that spread nets upon the waters shall languish.
9 Moreover they that work in combed flax, and they that weave white cloth, shall be confounded.
10 And the pillars `of Egypt' shall be broken in pieces; all they that work for hire `shall be' grieved in soul.
11 The princes of Zoan are utterly foolish; the counsel of the wisest counsellors of Pharaoh is become brutish: how say ye unto Pharaoh, I am the son of the wise, the son of ancient kings?
12 Where then are thy wise men? and let them tell thee now; and let them know what Jehovah of hosts hath purposed concerning Egypt.
13 The princes of Zoan are become fools, the princes of Memphis are deceived; they have caused Egypt to go astray, that are the corner-stone of her tribes.
14 Jehovah hath mingled a spirit of perverseness in the midst of her; and they have caused Egypt to go astray in every work thereof, as a drunken man staggereth in his vomit.
15 Neither shall there be for Egypt any work, which head or tail, palm-branch or rush, may do.
16 In that day shall the Egyptians be like unto women; and they shall tremble and fear because of the shaking of the hand of Jehovah of hosts, which he shaketh over them.
17 And the land of Judah shall become a terror unto Egypt; every one to whom mention is made thereof shall be afraid, because of the purpose of Jehovah of hosts, which he purposeth against it.
18 In that day there shall be five cities in the land of Egypt that speak the language of Canaan, and swear to Jehovah of hosts; one shall be called The city of destruction.
19 In that day shall there be an altar to Jehovah in the midst of the land of Egypt, and a pillar at the border thereof to Jehovah.
20 And it shall be for a sign and for a witness unto Jehovah of hosts in the land of Egypt; for they shall cry unto Jehovah because of oppressors, and he will send them a saviour, and a defender, and he will deliver them.
21 And Jehovah shall be known to Egypt, and the Egyptians shall know Jehovah in that day; yea, they shall worship with sacrifice and oblation, and shall vow a vow unto Jehovah, and shall perform it.
22 And Jehovah will smite Egypt, smiting and healing; and they shall return unto Jehovah, and he will be entreated of them, and will heal them.
23 In that day shall there be a highway out of Egypt to Assyria, and the Assyrian shall come into Egypt, and the Egyptian into Assyria; and the Egyptians shall worship with the Assyrians.
24 In that day shall Israel be the third with Egypt and with Assyria, a blessing in the midst of the earth;
25 for that Jehovah of hosts hath blessed them, saying, Blessed be Egypt my people, and Assyria the work of my hands, and Israel mine inheritance.
1 In the year that Tartan came unto Ashdod, when Sargon the king of Assyria sent him, and he fought against Ashdod and took it;
2 at that time Jehovah spake by Isaiah the son of Amoz, saying, Go, and loose the sackcloth from off thy loins, and put thy shoe from off thy foot. And he did so, walking naked and barefoot.
3 And Jehovah said, Like as my servant Isaiah hath walked naked and barefoot three years for a sign and a wonder concerning Egypt and concerning Ethiopia;
4 so shall the king of Assyria lead away the captives of Egypt, and the exiles of Ethiopia, young and old, naked and barefoot, and with buttocks uncovered, to the shame of Egypt.
5 And they shall be dismayed and confounded, because of Ethiopia their expectation, and of Egypt their glory.
6 And the inhabitant of this coast-land shall say in that day, Behold, such is our expectation, whither we fled for help to be delivered from the king of Assyria: and we, how shall we escape?
Second Reading: Psalms Chapter 77
1 I will cry unto God with my voice, Even unto God with my voice; and he will give ear unto me.
2 In the day of my trouble I sought the Lord: My hand was stretched out in the night, and slacked not; My soul refused to be comforted.
3 I remember God, and am disquieted: I complain, and my spirit is overwhelmed. Selah
4 Thou holdest mine eyes watching: I am so troubled that I cannot speak.
5 I have considered the days of old, The years of ancient times.
6 I call to remembrance my song in the night: I commune with mine own heart; And my spirit maketh diligent search.
7 Will the Lord cast off for ever? And will he be favorable no more?
8 Is his lovingkindness clean gone for ever? Doth his promise fail for evermore?
9 Hath God forgotten to be gracious? Hath he in anger shut up his tender mercies? Selah
10 And I said, This is my infirmity; `But I will remember' the years of the right hand of the Most High.
11 I will make mention of the deeds of Jehovah; For I will remember thy wonders of old.
12 I will meditate also upon all thy work, And muse on thy doings.
13 Thy way, O God, is in the sanctuary: Who is a great god like unto God?
14 Thou art the God that doest wonders: Thou hast made known thy strength among the peoples.
15 Thou hast with thine arm redeemed thy people, The sons of Jacob and Joseph. Selah
16 The waters saw thee, O God; The waters saw thee, they were afraid: The depths also trembled.
17 The clouds poured out water; The skies sent out a sound: Thine arrows also went abroad.
18 The voice of thy thunder was in the whirlwind; The lightnings lightened the world: The earth trembled and shook.
19 Thy way was in the sea, And thy paths in the great waters, And thy footsteps were not known.
20 Thou leddest thy people like a flock, By the hand of Moses and Aaron. Psalm 78 Maschil of Asaph.
THE ROLE OF PROPHECY
Part 1 of 6
According to Vine's An Expository Dictionary of New Testament Words, "prophecy, prophesy, prophesying" comes from a Greek word that signifies the speaking forth of the mind and counsel of God. Vine goes on to say: "Though much of O.T. prophecy was purely predictive, see Micah 5:2, e.g., and cp John 11:51, prophecy is not necessarily, nor even primarily, fore-telling. It is the declaration of that which cannot be known by natural means, Matt. 26:68, it is the forth-telling of the will of God, whether with reference to the past, the present, or the future, see Gen. 20:7: Deut. 18:18; Reve. 10:11; 11:3...."
I Corinthians 14 records the purposes of prophecy:
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