Last night I had a few dreams I stopped and wrote down this dream. I was in a park pavilion with a group of people that I know. These were people scattered from different parts and times in my life. They had all been told that I was doing something evil or demonic or that I was faking being something. So they came to confront me. I listened to what they had to say and then I rose up off of the ground a few inches and spun. I taught them some things and told them a story and prayed for them. Some left unchanged. Some yelled out, ‘we’re baptist, we believe in these things’ and others said, ‘this is good stuff’ and others said ‘that’s not what I was told’.
It’s hard to say exactly who is going to want to question me, I’m not exactly well known. But I guess God is going to make me somewhat well known, at least to the point that everyone in my life decides to tell me I can’t walk with God the way I do. This dream shows that I am going to run into a time where the people who know me best will all tell come against me. But God will give me grace to respond somehow, in a simple way and He will restore the relationship with many of them. My baptists that surround my life will understand that it’s God in my life and God will get glory in a new way from all of this. This all sounds uncomfortable to me but I suppose it is a step in the process of growth that must happen.
Now let’s jump into the Bible and find Jesus in Ezra. Ezra is so fun, he has a band named after him, he has the best book of the entire apocrypha, and he gets to tell the story of Cyrus and the rebuilding of Jerusalem. We can find Jesus in today’s reading without issue and we could even find our place in a prophetic cycle happening in our time. But I’ll leave the Cyrus/Trump stuff to the professionals and I’ll just find Jesus in here.
King Cyrus comes up several times in the Bible but the earliest mention isn’t here in Ezra. Ezra is in the history portion of the Bible and comes near the end of that section. But later in the Bible a new section starts, the prophets. Isaiah, is early in that section and much earlier in history than Ezra. Hundreds of years before Ezra came along, while Israel was still living in Israel and before King Cyrus’s grandparents were a twinkle in their parent’s eyes, God told Isaiah to write to Cyrus. In Isaiah 44 and 45 Isaiah prophesies about and even directly to King Cyrus by name. It’s one of the most amazing prophesies in the Bible.
Several hundred years later Ezra brings the writings of Isaiah to Cyrus and Cyrus gives the order to rebuild Jerusalem. Maybe this is a good time to get into the Trump/Cyrus thing actually. During the time of Cyrus they started to rebuilt the temple and the city and it was his laws and commands that made it happen. But it didn’t happen during his lifetime. If we are expecting this prophetic pattern in America we need to expect a time period when the church is completely shut down from the highest levels of government. That’s the pattern, yes you can build, they start building, it’s a big fight, they lose the fight. Then another leader comes along years and years later who looks back and says ok you can finish now. So if Trump is like Cyrus, then our next president will be like Xerxes and trouble is coming. But I’ll leave all of that to the professionals.
So where is Jesus? The rebuilding of Jerusalem is a foreshadowing of the return of Jesus. The exile to Babylon told of the time in the early church when power left Christianity and people started to seek earthly power in Jesus’ name. Here we are at the end and since the time of the reformation, power has been coming back into the church. The understanding of Christianity was all but lost and so it has taken generations to rebuild. But layer by layer and holiness by holiness and power of God by power of God the church has been rebuilt in the direction of Jesus and what He started.
Jesus said that believers would do greater works than He did because the Holy Spirit is coming to us. Many believers don’t believe Jesus when He said this but when we look at the revivals of history it’s clear that the church is growing towards this reality. Paul says that we will live up to the fullness and stature of Christ. Meaning that the entire church will be like one big bunch of Jesus, all of us doing our portions of what He did. That’s the target that we shoot for as believers. If we can individually conform to His image, then we can corporately conform to His image.
We still have a long way to go. Ezra tells us that this time is going to be supernaturally supplied for, but also difficult and full of opposition. And right at the end there will be a time of repentance from all of the various falsehoods that have been built into the church during our time in Babylon. But we will come out and we will leave our compromised spiritual mixed marriages in the form of false doctrines and false beliefs about God and His church and His son. We will come fully out of paganism which is still very abundant in the church.
Today’s reading started in 2 Chronicles 36 and then went all the way through Ezra. There are many parts of this that point to Jesus and His church in the last days. I hope you have a chance to read along with us. May God open your eyes to His amazing plans! May He reveal to you more than He has ever revealed to me so that we can grow from glory to glory together! May you be filled with the Holy Spirit and fire. May the strong hand of God’s grace and wisdom rest upon you and may God bless all y’all.