Today’s text: Ezra 5-7, Revelation 11
I truly enjoy studying the book of Revelation. As I read the 11th chapter in preparation for this next to my last blog I was reminded of two illustrations that are so true when it comes to the study of eschatology.
The example of the polished needle: I once heard a gentleman talk about examining a highly polished needle with a magnifying glass and found it to be perfect. He then put it under a microscope and found it to be riddled with minute flaws. As he increased the magnification he found an ever increasing number of defects in the needle. He then looked at the wing of a butterfly with a magnifying glass and saw details and patterns not visible with the naked eye. When he placed the wing under the higher magnification he found an ever increasing level of detail and a degree of craftsmanship at the cellular level that is beyond the skill of man to duplicate. Studying the Bible is similar in that the more we dig down into the detail the more beauty we find.
The example of a South African gold mine: A number of years ago a farmer was clearing some debris from a field. He inadvertently scraped his burden against an outcropping of rock and happen to notice what appeared to be gold within the rock. As he chipped away at the rock he saw that there was more gold. Over the next few years he gradually chipped away finding more and more treasure. One day he decided to form a partnership with his son and grandsons and start a real mining operation. Over the next several years they drilled, blasted and hauled load after load of rock looking for gold. They always found enough to stay in business but never enough to make a very comfortable living for their families. One day they had made repairs to their refining process and wanted to test their work. Instead of waiting for some of the good ore to be brought up out of the mine they loaded up some rock from the spoil pile. Imagine their shock when they discovered what they had been dumping as scraped contained almost as much gold as the good ore. They learned by experience that there is more than one type of ore. They spent the next several years recovering the ore from the spoil as well as find enough ore in the mine to make them all very wealthy.
As we continually study the Bible we become increasingly more adept at recognizing where the treasure is found. At first we can only glean those nuggets that are in plain sight. When we have attained a better understating of scripture as a whole we find greater rewards that we would have previously passed over. As we become more seasoned and more mature in the discipline of study our magnification level increases and we find a whole new level to appreciate and enjoy. Don’t take my word for it. Remain disciplined, remain consistent to your study and see what treasures you may find.