Friday, January 16, 2015

Journal Through the Bible: Week 91 Wednesday

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I Chronicles chapter 22

Even though God had told David that he would not be the one to build Him a house but that his son would, David set to work preparing building materials in abundance so that they would be ready for his son to build God a house of worship. Then he gave his son instructions for building that house.

Does God issue any commands?

  • David told Solomon of God's commands. God had instructed that David not build the house of worship because he was a man of war but instructed that his son, Solomon (even the name was taken from shalom, peace), be the one to build the Temple because he would be a man of peace.


Does God make any promises?

  • God promised that Solomon could build the Temple with the things that David had prepared for it.
  • David told Solomon of God's promise of an everlasting covenant.


Does this chapter teach anything about Jesus?
  • The whole Old Testament is about God getting everything ready for the Messiah, Jesus, the Son Who came to prepare a place for us so that we could forever worship the Father in the beauty of holiness. Jesus Himself told His disciples in John 14 that He was going to prepare a place for us and then would come again to receive us unto Himself so that where He is we will be there also. He also said in that chapter that He and His Father are one and that anyone who saw Jesus saw the Father revealed in Him.
  • It can be said that God is a God of war because He was forced to wage battle against sin in order to purchase His creation once more. Jesus is the Prince of Peace. This relationship between the Warrior King and the Prince of Peace is pictured by David and Solomon.
  • Just as David instructed his beloved son in building a place where God and man would meet, Jesus said that He had kept all of His Father's commands for building a place where God and man must meet. 
  • Solomon had access to all of his father's riches and provisions. Jesus had access to all of His Father's riches and provisions. And because of Jesus, all who repent of their sin and trust in Him as their savior also have access to the Father's riches and provisions.

Does this chapter teach anything about yet-future events?

  • The splendor and glory of all the provisions that David set aside to build a magnificent Temple surely point out what a spectacular place the mansions of Heaven must be!

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Journal Through the Bible: Week 91 Tuesday

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I Chronicles chapter 21

In the last post I mentioned that even though the chapter did not say so the events recorded there transpired at the time of the David and Bathsheba affair. We can know this by comparing chapter 20 with its counterpart in II Samuel.

This chapter doesn't pull any punches though. It tells us that David sinfully numbered Israel which then brought judgment upon the whole nation.

The writer of this chronicle, compiling his edition in the post-exile years for the citizens returning from 70 years of captivity, evidently had access to the notes that Joab made and gave to David concerning this census because the tallies between this chapter and that of its counterpart in II Samuel seem to be consistently off by approximately the same number. Verse 6 of this chapter mentions that Joab refused to count the tribes of Levi and Benjamin but since their inclusion could raise the totals as found in II Samuel it seems reasonable to conclude that David sent someone to finish the task by counting those two tribes. That would account for their inclusion in II Samuel which was written prior to the exile and their absence in I Chronicles which was written after. Levi and Benjamin would have been 2 tribes represented in the southern kingdom of Judah that the descendants of David ruled until they went into exile in Babylon. Judah was the other one, as the name of the country itself suggests. Thus some of the returning exiles would have been descendants of the two tribes, Levi and Benjamin.

The tribes counted by Joab, with the exception of Judah, were later captured by Assyria and were therefore not as well represented when the diaspora ended. These are sometimes called the "Lost Tribes of Israel" but we know they were not totally "lost" because even at the time of Jesus' birth the aged woman, Anna, that had been waiting in the Temple for many years for God to reveal to her the promised Messiah was said to be from the tribe of Asshur which was a tribe of that northern kingdom. Remember that the Assyrian empire ended when they were conquered by the Babylonians, the Medes, and the Persians. Those Jews that had survived the cruel Assyrians were then absorbed into those empires as their brethren from the nation of Judah had been.

Notice also that the original tabernacle and the altar for burnt offerings were still in existence and being used at Gibeon at the time of this judgment. David could not go there to offer sacrifices because of the angel that held the sword.

Does God issue any commands?
  • Through Joab God warned David not to persist with his plan to number Israel.
  • Through the prophet Gad God told David to make a choice of three punishments offered. (David decided it was better to fall into the hands of God than the hands of men.)
  • The angel of the LORD commanded Gad to tell David to set up an altar unto the LORD in the threshing floor of Ornan the Jebusite. (Notice that the angel was visible to everyone present.)
  • The LORD commanded the angel to put away his sword.


Does God make any promises?
  • It is implied that if David offered the required sacrifices at Ornan's threshing floor God would accept the offering and stop the plague that was sweeping through the land. This seems to be confirmed by the fact that God provided the fire for the sacrifice from Heaven.


Does this chapter teach anything about Jesus?
  • When David sinned innocent people died. When humanity sinned the innocent Jesus died.
  • The sacrifices of burnt offerings and peace offerings made by David at Ornan's threshing floor pictured the sacrificial atonement made by the blood of Jesus Christ.
  • At the time of the sacrifice God told the angel to put away the sword of death. Once Jesus made the ultimate sacrifice for our sin the sword of death hanging over our heads was put away. Death lost its sting! The grave was defeated!


Does this chapter teach anything about yet-future events?
  • We learn from the events at Ornan's threshing floor that the angels are used as instruments of judgment whenever God commands. In the book of Revelation we are told that the angels of God will be given power to bring death at times of judgment by using many forms of pestilence. 

Thursday, January 8, 2015

Journal Through the Bible: Week 91 Monday

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I Chronicles chapter 20

The Chronicles account does not include the David and Bathsheba narrative that happened chronologically between the events mentioned in I Chronicles chapter 19 and this one. Notice though that in I Chronicles chapter 19 David was leading the battles at the end but at the beginning of chapter 20 it is mentioned that David tarried at Jerusalem while Joab continued the battle against the Ammonites at Rabbah.

Verse 3 as written makes David seem as though he was a gruesome conqueror. Other literal translations render the Hebrew word as "put them" or other ways to denote that they were sentenced to menial labor with saws, iron harrows, and axes. The parallel passage in II Samuel 12 could also be translated this way. There it also adds passing through the brick kilns which was a job that Egyptians had assigned to the Israelites when they were enslaved. The Henry Morris Study Bible suggests that the phrase was colloquial or a figure of speech that we no longer understand. This makes sense. How many people unfamiliar with American figures of speech would understand if I said, "He cut me to the quick" that I am not meaning that he literally took a knife and pierced my flesh? Being cut to the quick hurts either way, just not in the same way.Whatever happened, it was the conqueror that always passed judgment upon the conquered.

Does God issue any commands?

  • God does not speak.


Does God make any promises?

  • God does not speak.


Does this chapter teach anything about Jesus?

  • The crown of the king of Rabbah was taken from his head and placed upon the head of David. Although Jesus refused to take the throne of Israel at the time of His first advent, at the final battle between the army of Christ and the army of men and Satan, Jesus will be wearing many crowns symbolizing His right of Creator and Conqueror of sin, death, hell and the grave to rule all nations. (see Revelation 1:5, 4:10, 11:15, 17:14, and 19:11-16; also Psalm 2:7-9; Daniel 7:13-14; Philippians 2:9-10)


Does this chapter teach anything about yet-future events?

  • All of the prophetic mentions of the Messiah tell of the time when He will reign over Israel and will conquer all other kingdoms, physical and spiritual. They will be placed under His rule. The 24 elders in Revelation 4 humbly lay down their crowns at His feet in submission. If the elders do this it is logical to conclude that all who possess any laurel or diadem will also place them at His feet.


Tuesday, January 6, 2015

Journal Through the Bible: Week 90 Saturday

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I Chronicles chapter 19

This chapter is also almost identical to II Samuel chapter 10. These are also the chapters that tell how David defeated Zobah, Ammon, and the Syrians as mentioned in chapter 18. These are the nations he defeated and gained gold and brass for the future Temple building project.

Does God issue any commands?

  • God does not speak.


Does God make any promises?

  • God does not speak.


Does this chapter teach anything about Jesus?

  • Like the servants of David, Jesus came as an ambassador from the Sovereign only to be treated disrespectfully. And like the battle that ensued between Israel and Ammon, God will fight those who are disrespectful to His Son. (Jesus told a similar story in a parable about a landowner who sent his son to collect the goods due him from the husbandmen who then sent his armies to fight the wicked husbandmen who killed his son.)


Does this chapter teach anything about yet-future events?

  • Those who disrespect God's Ambassador will not go unpunished.