Today we read one chapter of second Corinthians and the first chapter of Esther.
July 11: 2 Corinthians 8, Esther 1 (click on the chapter to begin reading)
2 Corinthians 8. The Macedonians excelled in giving but first gave their own selves to the Lord. Christ is our pattern in giving himself. The Corinthians took up a collection for the Judean saints. Titus was sent to the Corinthians.
Esther 1. A fantastic book that made it to the Holy Bible, even though the name of God is not mentioned, not even once. Yet, the hand of God is everywhere in it. Read all of it! It starts with a big, decadent feast, and queen Vashti refused to make a spectacle of herself so she was deposed. Now what do you do without a queen?
Esther 1, the Big Feast, Queen Vashti Deposed
The four beasts in Daniel: “In my vision at night I looked, and there before me were the four winds of heaven churning up the great sea” (Daniel 7:2).
1: “The first beast was like a lion, and it had the wings of an eagle” (Daniel 7:4). “The four great beasts are four kings that will rise from the earth” (verse 17). This first beast is representative of King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon. (Daniel 4:34–35).
2. The second beast in Daniel’s vision is “like a bear. It was raised up on one of its sides, and it had three ribs in its mouth between its teeth” (Daniel 7:5). This beast represents the Medo-Persian Empire; the raising up of one side of the creature indicates that one of the kingdom’s parts (Persia) would be dominant. The three ribs in the creature’s mouth symbolize nations that were “devoured” by the Medes and the Persians. These three conquered nations are known to be Babylon, Lydia, and Egypt.
3. The third beast is “like a leopard,” except it has four bird-like wings on its back and four heads (Daniel 7:6). This beast is given authority to rule and represents Greece, The four heads are predictive of the four-way division of the empire following Alexander the Great’s death. Daniel’s vision of the ram and the goat gives further details of the second and third kingdoms (see Daniel 8).
4. The fourth beast is rising from the sea and is the most dreadful—“terrifying and frightening and very powerful” (Daniel 7:7). This fourth beast has “bronze claws” (verse 19) and “large iron teeth; it crushed and devoured its victims and trampled underfoot whatever was left” totally annihilating its prey (verse 7). The fourth beast has ten horns. This creature represents the Roman Empire, a mighty kingdom that indeed crushed all its foes.
After the fall of Rome, after the death of Muhammad in 632 A.D. the expansion of the Muslim Caliphates began and expanded until the decisive battle of Tours in 732 A.D, only one hundred years later.
The ancient City of Susa.