Seven Comes Before Eight!

One mistake we novices make in reading the Bible is to take scripture out of context. We try to understand what God is saying by looking at one or two verses. In fact, if truth be told many denominations are even built on the basis of a few scriptures, refusing to look at the Bible in its’ entirety.

Admittedly without someone to explain it to us, it can be a confounding task. Old school church had/has the benefit of Sunday School – but even with this, if the teacher does not get proper instruction, they and their students can be misled. There is a Word given by Jesus Himself which can give us hope:

"But when the Father sends the Advocate as my representative–that is, the Holy Spirit – he will teach you everything and will remind you of everything I have told you." John 14:26 (NLT)

Technically this  is Jesus speaking to His disciples, but fortunately for us when we claim the Name of Christ, we also become His disciples and receive the benefit of this Word. Therefore, we can "ASK" the Holy Spirit to teach us things "too hard to understand". 

God, being the same yesterday, today and forever also spoke to some of His servants in the days before Christ came and revealed to them the secrets of His Word. One such individual was Daniel. We see in Daniel, chapter 9 the following passage"

In the first year of Darius the son of Ahasuerus, of Median descent, who was made king over the realm of the Chaldeans— 2 in the first year of his reign, I, Daniel, understood from the books the number of years which, according to the word of the Lord to Jeremiah the prophet, must pass before the desolations [which had been] pronounced on Jerusalem would end; and it was seventy years. 3 So I directed my attention to the Lord God to seek Him by prayer and supplications, with fasting, sackcloth and ashes. Daniel 9:1-3 (AMP)

Daniel sought the Lord as he studied the writing so the prophet Jeremiah and he was finally able to understand that the children of Israel would be in Babylon for seventy years. As devout as he was, I wondered, why did it take him so long to discover this. I felt prompted to go back to Chapter 8 – it was here that I read the prophetic declaration revealed to Daniel concerning the end times. It was mind boggling to him. Then I understood. After this revealing prophecy Daniel pursued the scriptures with a greater passion, with more intense fasting and prayer. This led to his receiving a new understanding of what was there all along.

It’s the same for us – before we understand chapter eight – we need to experience chapter seven!