Thursday, June 29, 2006

Genesis 15 - Fear Not - Part Two

Genesis 15:1 After these things the word of the LORD came unto Abram in a vision, saying, Fear not, Abram: I am thy shield, and thy exceeding great reward.

1) Fear not, the Lord will fight for you, and give you victory:

Exodus 14:13-14 And Moses said unto the people, Fear ye not, stand still, and see the salvation of the LORD, which he will shew to you to day: for the Egyptians whom ye have seen to day, ye shall see them again no more for ever. The LORD shall fight for you, and ye shall hold your peace.

Numbers 14:8-9 If the LORD delight in us, then he will bring us into this land, and give it us; a land which floweth with milk and honey. Only rebel not ye against the LORD, neither fear ye the people of the land; for they are bread for us: their defence is departed from them, and the LORD is with us: fear them not.

Deuteronomy 3:21-22 And I commanded Joshua at that time, saying, Thine eyes have seen all that the LORD your God hath done unto these two kings: so shall the LORD do unto all the kingdoms whither thou passest. Ye shall not fear them: for the LORD your God he shall fight for you.

Deuteronomy 20:2-4 And it shall be, when ye are come nigh unto the battle, that the priest shall approach and speak unto the people, And shall say unto them, Hear, O Israel, ye approach this day unto battle against your enemies: let not your hearts faint, fear not, and do not tremble, neither be ye terrified because of them; For the LORD your God is he that goeth with you, to fight for you against your enemies, to save you.

Joshua 10:24-25 And it came to pass, when they brought out those kings unto Joshua, that Joshua called for all the men of Israel, and said unto the captains of the men of war which went with him, Come near, put your feet upon the necks of these kings. And they came near, and put their feet upon the necks of them. And Joshua said unto them, Fear not, nor be dismayed, be strong and of good courage: for thus shall the LORD do to all your enemies against whom ye fight.

2 Kings 6:15-17 And when the servant of the man of God was risen early, and gone forth, behold, an host compassed the city both with horses and chariots. And his servant said unto him, Alas, my master! how shall we do? And he answered, Fear not: for they that be with us are more than they that be with them. And Elisha prayed, and said, LORD, I pray thee, open his eyes, that he may see. And the LORD opened the eyes of the young man; and he saw: and, behold, the mountain was full of horses and chariots of fire round about Elisha.

2 Chronicles 32:6-8 And he set captains of war over the people, and gathered them together to him in the street of the gate of the city, and spake comfortably to them, saying, Be strong and courageous, be not afraid nor dismayed for the king of Assyria, nor for all the multitude that is with him: for there be more with us than with him: With him is an arm of flesh; but with us is the LORD our God to help us, and to fight our battles. And the people rested themselves upon the words of Hezekiah king of Judah.

2 Kings 17:39 But the LORD your God ye shall fear; and he shall deliver you out of the hand of all your enemies.

2 Chronicles 20:17 Ye shall not need to fight in this battle: set yourselves, stand ye still, and see the salvation of the LORD with you, O Judah and Jerusalem: fear not, nor be dismayed; to morrow go out against them: for the LORD will be with you.

2) Fear not what man can do unto you:

Psalms 27:1, 3 The LORD is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear? the LORD is the strength of my life; of whom shall I be afraid? Though an host should encamp against me, my heart shall not fear: though war should rise against me, in this will I be confident.

Psalms 56:4 In God I will praise his word, in God I have put my trust; I will not fear what flesh can do unto me.

Psalms 64:1 Hear my voice, O God, in my prayer: preserve my life from fear of the enemy.

Psalms 118:6 The LORD is on my side; I will not fear: what can man do unto me?

Proverbs 29:25 The fear of man bringeth a snare: but whoso putteth his trust in the LORD shall be safe.

Isaiah 8:12-13 Say ye not, A confederacy, to all them to whom this people shall say, A confederacy; neither fear ye their fear, nor be afraid. Sanctify the LORD of hosts himself; and let him be your fear, and let him be your dread.

Psalms 56:11 In God have I put my trust: I will not be afraid what man can do unto me.

Isaiah 51:7, 12 Hearken unto me, ye that know righteousness, the people in whose heart is my law; fear ye not the reproach of men, neither be ye afraid of their revilings. I, even I, am he that comforteth you: who art thou, that thou shouldest be afraid of a man that shall die, and of the son of man which shall be made as grass;

Matthew 10:28-31 And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell. Are not two sparrows sold for a farthing? and one of them shall not fall on the ground without your Father. But the very hairs of your head are all numbered. Fear ye not therefore, ye are of more value than many sparrows.

Philippians 1:14 And many of the brethren in the Lord, waxing confident by my bonds, are much more bold to speak the word without fear.

1 Peter 3:13-16 And who is he that will harm you, if ye be followers of that which is good? But and if ye suffer for righteousness' sake, happy are ye: and be not afraid of their terror, neither be troubled; But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts: and be ready always to give an answer to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you with meekness and fear: Having a good conscience; that, whereas they speak evil of you, as of evildoers, they may be ashamed that falsely accuse your good conversation in Christ.

Revelation 2:10 Fear none of those things which thou shalt suffer: behold, the devil shall cast some of you into prison, that ye may be tried; and ye shall have tribulation ten days: be thou faithful unto death, and I will give thee a crown of life.

3) Fear not, for I will help you:

Psalms 46:1-3 God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble. Therefore will not we fear, though the earth be removed, and though the mountains be carried into the midst of the sea; Though the waters thereof roar and be troubled, though the mountains shake with the swelling thereof. Selah.

Isaiah 41:10, 13 Fear thou not; for I am with thee: be not dismayed; for I am thy God: I will strengthen thee; yea, I will help thee; yea, I will uphold thee with the right hand of my righteousness. For I the LORD thy God will hold thy right hand, saying unto thee, Fear not; I will help thee.

Mark 5:35-36 While he yet spake, there came from the ruler of the synagogue's house certain which said, Thy daughter is dead: why troublest thou the Master any further? As soon as Jesus heard the word that was spoken, he saith unto the ruler of the synagogue, Be not afraid, only believe.

June 29th/06
Jerry Bouey

For more studies based on Genesis 15:1:

Genesis 15 - Fear Not - Part One
Genesis 15 - Fear Not - Part Three
Genesis 15 - Fear Not - Part Four
Genesis 15 - Thy Shield
Genesis 15 - Thy Exceeding Great Reward

For more studies in Genesis (with Genesis as the springboard):

Genesis

Genesis 15 - Fear Not - Part One

Genesis 15:1 After these things the word of the LORD came unto Abram in a vision, saying, Fear not, Abram: I am thy shield, and thy exceeding great reward.

The first time in the Bible we see the word fear is in Genesis 9:2 - but here we see God's command to Abram, and the second use of the word fear - but now it is in the negative: fear not. Abram had just come back from a battle where he had risked his life to rescue his nephew, Lot, but God had kept him safe. Then he met the king of Sodom and was faced with a choice - the choice to take some of the spoil of the battle. Before he could choose, Melchizedek (a type of Christ) came out and met him, and encouraged him in his walk with the Lord by blessing him. His faith was strengthened and he thereafter chose not to take any of the spoils, lest the king of Sodom should say, I have made Abram rich.

Perhaps Abram was tempted by the riches or was wondering about the possibilities that the battle might not have fared so well for him - maybe those riches could have given him a sense of security after all, but he rejected them because of their source. After he made his choice, the Word of the Lord came to him - reminding him of where his trust and contentment should be. He need not fear man, nor even the snares and pitfalls of those riches (or lack thereof), for God would be his shield and exceeding great reward.

I believe these words to Abram are also quite applicable to all God's children: "Fear not, My child, I am your shield too, and your exceeding great reward. As long as you are walking in right fellowship with me, you need not fear anything this world has in store - for I will protect you and provide for you."

In meditating on this verse of Scripture (Genesis 15:1), I have decided to do a series of devotions on the three themes presented in it: walking without fear, the Lord God being our shield, and being our reward. This fear part will deal with passages that command us not to be afraid or contain promises on overcoming fear. The Lord wants His children to live without fear and know how to conquer it when it does come; the only fear the true believer is to have is the fear of the Lord - that is a reverence and an awe for God and a hatred of evil, an attitude that desires to turn from sin and walk in holiness before the Lord. In the approximately 700 verses dealing with fear and being afraid, a high percentage of them are in reference to the fear of the Lord; while I will not be covering that aspect of fear in this series of studies, it would definitely be a worthwhile topic for all God's children to dig deeper into.

As for the remainder of passages dealing with fear, I have chosen to focus specifically on the ones where believers in the Bible are commanded to fear not - if the passage is one we cannot directly apply (due to the circumstances surrounding the statement), we can still glean principles to apply to our own lives. Due to the vast number of verses, I will just quote some representative ones (ones that are particularly meaningful to me) on each aspect of what we are told by God to "Fear not."

1) Fear not, God is proving (testing) your heart and walk:

Exodus 20:20 And Moses said unto the people, Fear not: for God is come to prove you, and that his fear may be before your faces, that ye sin not.

2) Fear not other gods/idols:

2 Kings 17:36-37 But the LORD, who brought you up out of the land of Egypt with great power and a stretched out arm, him shall ye fear, and him shall ye worship, and to him shall ye do sacrifice. And the statutes, and the ordinances, and the law, and the commandment, which he wrote for you, ye shall observe to do for evermore; and ye shall not fear other gods.

Jeremiah 10:3-5 For the customs of the people are vain: for one cutteth a tree out of the forest, the work of the hands of the workman, with the axe. They deck it with silver and with gold; they fasten it with nails and with hammers, that it move not. They are upright as the palm tree, but speak not: they must needs be borne, because they cannot go. Be not afraid of them; for they cannot do evil, neither also is it in them to do good.

3) Fear not, I will keep my covenant with you:

Genesis 26:24 And the LORD appeared unto him the same night, and said, I am the God of Abraham thy father: fear not, for I am with thee, and will bless thee, and multiply thy seed for my servant Abraham's sake.

4) Fear not, I will guide you and be with you:

Genesis 46:3-4 And he said, I am God, the God of thy father: fear not to go down into Egypt; for I will there make of thee a great nation: I will go down with thee into Egypt; and I will also surely bring thee up again: and Joseph shall put his hand upon thine eyes.

Deuteronomy 31:6 Be strong and of a good courage, fear not, nor be afraid of them: for the LORD thy God, he it is that doth go with thee; he will not fail thee, nor forsake thee. (See also 1 Chronicles 28:20)

Psalms 23:4 Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me; thy rod and thy staff they comfort me.

Zephaniah 3:16-17 In that day it shall be said to Jerusalem, Fear thou not: and to Zion, Let not thine hands be slack. The LORD thy God in the midst of thee is mighty; he will save, he will rejoice over thee with joy; he will rest in his love, he will joy over thee with singing.

Acts 18:9-10 Then spake the Lord to Paul in the night by a vision, Be not afraid, but speak, and hold not thy peace: For I am with thee, and no man shall set on thee to hurt thee: for I have much people in this city.

5) Fear not, I will deliver you:

Psalms 34:4, 7 I sought the LORD, and he heard me, and delivered me from all my fears. The angel of the LORD encampeth round about them that fear him, and delivereth them.

Isaiah 35:4 Say to them that are of a fearful heart, Be strong, fear not: behold, your God will come with vengeance, even God with a recompence; he will come and save you.

Jeremiah 30:10 Therefore fear thou not, O my servant Jacob, saith the LORD; neither be dismayed, O Israel: for, lo, I will save thee from afar, and thy seed from the land of their captivity; and Jacob shall return, and shall be in rest, and be quiet, and none shall make him afraid.

6) Fear not, for I have redeemed you and will be with you through your trials:

Isaiah 43:1-2 But now thus saith the LORD that created thee, O Jacob, and he that formed thee, O Israel, Fear not: for I have redeemed thee, I have called thee by thy name; thou art mine. When thou passest through the waters, I will be with thee; and through the rivers, they shall not overflow thee: when thou walkest through the fire, thou shalt not be burned; neither shall the flame kindle upon thee.

7) Fear not, I will provide for all your needs and help you in your distress:

Genesis 21:17 And God heard the voice of the lad; and the angel of God called to Hagar out of heaven, and said unto her, What aileth thee, Hagar? fear not; for God hath heard the voice of the lad where he is.

1 Kings 17:13-14 And Elijah said unto her, Fear not; go and do as thou hast said: but make me thereof a little cake first, and bring it unto me, and after make for thee and for thy son. For thus saith the LORD God of Israel, The barrel of meal shall not waste, neither shall the cruse of oil fail, until the day that the LORD sendeth rain upon the earth.

Hebrews 13:5-6 Let your conversation be without covetousness; and be content with such things as ye have: for he hath said, I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee. So that we may boldly say, The Lord is my helper, and I will not fear what man shall do unto me.

June 29th/06
Jerry Bouey

For more studies based on Genesis 15:1:

Genesis 15 - Fear Not - Part Two
Genesis 15 - Fear Not - Part Three
Genesis 15 - Fear Not - Part Four
Genesis 15 - Thy Shield
Genesis 15 - Thy Exceeding Great Reward

For more studies in Genesis (with Genesis as the springboard):

Genesis

Sunday, June 25, 2006

But God...

I was reading another blog the other day, and I came across this quote in one of the comments that were posted:

"But God" ... What a wonderful phrase ... what a wonderful truth.

I do not recall the passage the poster was referring to (if he had actually stated it or not), but the phrase and his comment stuck with me. But God... So I started looking through the Bible to see some passages where this phrase (as well as "But the Lord") is used. Here are some that particularly blessed me:

Genesis 39:20-21 And Joseph's master took him, and put him into the prison, a place where the king's prisoners were bound: and he was there in the prison. But the LORD was with Joseph, and shewed him mercy, and gave him favour in the sight of the keeper of the prison.

Acts 7:9-10 And the patriarchs, moved with envy, sold Joseph into Egypt: but God was with him, And delivered him out of all his afflictions, and gave him favour and wisdom in the sight of Pharaoh king of Egypt; and he made him governor over Egypt and all his house.

Genesis 45:7-8 And God sent me before you to preserve you a posterity in the earth, and to save your lives by a great deliverance. So now it was not you that sent me hither, but God: and he hath made me a father to Pharaoh, and lord of all his house, and a ruler throughout all the land of Egypt.

Genesis 50:20 But as for you, ye thought evil against me; but God meant it unto good, to bring to pass, as it is this day, to save much people alive.

Deuteronomy 7:22-23 And the LORD thy God will put out those nations before thee by little and little: thou mayest not consume them at once, lest the beasts of the field increase upon thee. But the LORD thy God shall deliver them unto thee, and shall destroy them with a mighty destruction, until they be destroyed.

Deuteronomy 23:4-5 Because they met you not with bread and with water in the way, when ye came forth out of Egypt; and because they hired against thee Balaam the son of Beor of Pethor of Mesopotamia, to curse thee. Nevertheless the LORD thy God would not hearken unto Balaam; but the LORD thy God turned the curse into a blessing unto thee, because the LORD thy God loved thee.

Judges 15:18-19 And he was sore athirst, and called on the LORD, and said, Thou hast given this great deliverance into the hand of thy servant: and now shall I die for thirst, and fall into the hand of the uncircumcised? But God clave an hollow place that was in the jaw, and there came water thereout; and when he had drunk, his spirit came again, and he revived: wherefore he called the name thereof Enhakkore, which is in Lehi unto this day.

1 Samuel 7:9-10 And Samuel took a sucking lamb, and offered it for a burnt offering wholly unto the LORD: and Samuel cried unto the LORD for Israel; and the LORD heard him. And as Samuel was offering up the burnt offering, the Philistines drew near to battle against Israel: but the LORD thundered with a great thunder on that day upon the Philistines, and discomfited them; and they were smitten before Israel.

1 Samuel 23:14 And David abode in the wilderness in strong holds, and remained in a mountain in the wilderness of Ziph. And Saul sought him every day, but God delivered him not into his hand.

2 Samuel 22:18-19 He delivered me from my strong enemy, and from them that hated me: for they were too strong for me. They prevented me in the day of my calamity: but the LORD was my stay.

Psalms 34:19 Many are the afflictions of the righteous: but the LORD delivereth him out of them all.

Psalms 37:17 For the arms of the wicked shall be broken: but the LORD upholdeth the righteous.

Psalms 49:15 But God will redeem my soul from the power of the grave: for he shall receive me. Selah.

Psalms 73:26 My flesh and my heart faileth: but God is the strength of my heart, and my portion for ever.

Psalms 75:6-7 For promotion cometh neither from the east, nor from the west, nor from the south. But God is the judge: he putteth down one, and setteth up another.

Psalms 94:21-22 They gather themselves together against the soul of the righteous, and condemn the innocent blood. But the LORD is my defence; and my God is the rock of my refuge.

Psalms 118:13 Thou hast thrust sore at me that I might fall: but the LORD helped me.

Proverbs 16:9 A man's heart deviseth his way: but the LORD directeth his steps.

Isaiah 60:2 For, behold, the darkness shall cover the earth, and gross darkness the people: but the LORD shall arise upon thee, and his glory shall be seen upon thee.

Isaiah 60:19 The sun shall be no more thy light by day; neither for brightness shall the moon give light unto thee: but the LORD shall be unto thee an everlasting light, and thy God thy glory.

Jeremiah 1:6-7 Then said I, Ah, Lord GOD! behold, I cannot speak: for I am a child. But the LORD said unto me, Say not, I am a child: for thou shalt go to all that I shall send thee, and whatsoever I command thee thou shalt speak.

Jeremiah 10:9-10 Silver spread into plates is brought from Tarshish, and gold from Uphaz, the work of the workman, and of the hands of the founder: blue and purple is their clothing: they are all the work of cunning men. But the LORD is the true God, he is the living God, and an everlasting king: at his wrath the earth shall tremble, and the nations shall not be able to abide his indignation.

Jeremiah 20:10-11 For I heard the defaming of many, fear on every side. Report, say they, and we will report it. All my familiars watched for my halting, saying, Peradventure he will be enticed, and we shall prevail against him, and we shall take our revenge on him. But the LORD is with me as a mighty terrible one: therefore my persecutors shall stumble, and they shall not prevail: they shall be greatly ashamed; for they shall not prosper: their everlasting confusion shall never be forgotten.

Jeremiah 36:26 But the king commanded Jerahmeel the son of Hammelech, and Seraiah the son of Azriel, and Shelemiah the son of Abdeel, to take Baruch the scribe and Jeremiah the prophet: but the LORD hid them.

Joel 3:16 The LORD also shall roar out of Zion, and utter his voice from Jerusalem; and the heavens and the earth shall shake: but the LORD will be the hope of his people, and the strength of the children of Israel.

Acts 9:13-15 Then Ananias answered, Lord, I have heard by many of this man, how much evil he hath done to thy saints at Jerusalem: And here he hath authority from the chief priests to bind all that call on thy name. But the Lord said unto him, Go thy way: for he is a chosen vessel unto me, to bear my name before the Gentiles, and kings, and the children of Israel:

Acts 13:28-30 And though they found no cause of death in him, yet desired they Pilate that he should be slain. And when they had fulfilled all that was written of him, they took him down from the tree, and laid him in a sepulchre. But God raised him from the dead:

Romans 5:6-8 For when we were yet without strength, in due time Christ died for the ungodly. For scarcely for a righteous man will one die: yet peradventure for a good man some would even dare to die. But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.

1 Corinthians 1:26-29 For ye see your calling, brethren, how that not many wise men after the flesh, not many mighty, not many noble, are called: But God hath chosen the foolish things of the world to confound the wise; and God hath chosen the weak things of the world to confound the things which are mighty; And base things of the world, and things which are despised, hath God chosen, yea, and things which are not, to bring to nought things that are: That no flesh should glory in his presence.

1 Corinthians 2:9-10 But as it is written, Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love him. But God hath revealed them unto us by his Spirit: for the Spirit searcheth all things, yea, the deep things of God.

1 Corinthians 3:6-7 I have planted, Apollos watered; but God gave the increase. So then neither is he that planteth any thing, neither he that watereth; but God that giveth the increase.

1 Corinthians 10:13 There hath no temptation taken you but such as is common to man: but God is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear it.

1 Corinthians 12:24-25 For our comely parts have no need: but God hath tempered the body together, having given more abundant honour to that part which lacked: That there should be no schism in the body; but that the members should have the same care one for another.

Galatians 3:18 For if the inheritance be of the law, it is no more of promise: but God gave it to Abraham by promise.

Ephesians 2:4-5 But God, who is rich in mercy, for his great love wherewith he loved us, Even when we were dead in sins, hath quickened us together with Christ, (by grace ye are saved;)

2 Thessalonians 3:2-3 And that we may be delivered from unreasonable and wicked men: for all men have not faith. But the Lord is faithful, who shall stablish you, and keep you from evil.

Definitely a wide range of subjects covered here. Which ones are your favourite?

For me, I would have to say the references to God being with Joseph, the passage about Jesus rising from the dead, the part about God being the strength of my heart, that the Lord has quickened me together with Christ, and that He has revealed through His Spirit the things that He hath prepared for us.

June 25th/06
Jerry Bouey

For more studies in Genesis (with Genesis as the springboard):

Genesis

Living By The Word Of God

One word I have come across within the last couple of months is the word rhema. It is one of the Greek words used in the New Testament and translated as "word" in our Bibles. The main word used for "word" (as in the Word of God) is logos, and is generally a reference to all of the Bible - whereas rhema refers to a specific portion of the Scriptures. When you read these two definitions of this term that are quoted below and see its usage in various New Testament passages, you will see the important distinction that is being made by using this word. (It was these two articles that first introduced me to the meaning of this word - and challenged me to dig a little deeper.)

The following explanation of this term is from Meditate In Thy Precepts:

In Ephesians 6:17b we see, "...and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God." The word translated "word" is rhema, which is a Greek term describing individual phrases or passages in a literary work. Paul did not use logos, a term describing often the general summation of the Scripture, but rather rhema, describing more properly each individual passage in the Scripture, each verse that can, in one circumstance or another, be used to counteract a lie from satan. When the Lord was tempted of satan in the desert, He didn't just remind the enemy that God's logos says "this general refutation of your temptation". Rather, He quoted specific passages that uniquely dealt with the temptation at hand, and thus contrafuted and defeated the tempter.

Another good explanation is taken from What Is Truth (this blog entry is well worth the read, explaining the meaning of the term Paul used in 2 Timothy 2:15, "rightly dividing the word of truth"):

The message of God's Word works powerfully in its context. Romans 10:17 says that faith comes by hearing and hearing by the Word of God. "Word" there is the Greek word rhema. Rhema is not the Greek term for all of the Bible. Rhema speaks of a portion of the Word of God, a piece of God's Word that deals with a particular point of doctrine and practice, seen within an appropriate conception of its context... Our faith comes from seeing passages in their context and understanding them as the Lord intended.

As a brand new believer, I remember witnessing to the lost and fellowshipping with the saved, speaking about anything from the Bible, thinking that would be a benefit to others - and it never seemed to get anyone saved, and it certainly didn't strengthen anyone's faith. But then later, when I learned what passages (and facts) specifically to cover when presenting the Gospel or teaching a particular Bible study, I found that God's Word had an impact on their lives. The lost came under conviction through the presenting of the Gospel of Christ (rather than just discussing God's Word in general - that's where I was as a new believer, wanting to talk about everything, but not building precept upon precept), and believers were strengthened in their faith - when they saw something specific in the Word of God, when they saw something layed out systematically before them.

According to those definitions above, faith comes when we believe and apply specific portions of God's Word to our lives. It is not just reading in general - though that is beneficial - but studying out each specific theme or passage that builds our faith. If we want faith, for example, about how God answers prayer, reading just any passage is not going to help us in this area - but reading passages specifically about prayer, seeing examples of God doing this in Scripture, will do so.

For some examples, notice how the following passages show that it was a specific word that was brought to mind or referred to:

Mark 14:72 And the second time the cock crew. And Peter called to mind the word that Jesus said unto him, Before the cock crow twice, thou shalt deny me thrice. And when he thought thereon, he wept.

Luke 2:26, 28-30 And it was revealed unto him by the Holy Ghost, that he should not see death, before he had seen the Lord's Christ. Then took he him up in his arms, and blessed God, and said, Lord, now lettest thou thy servant depart in peace, according to thy word: For mine eyes have seen thy salvation.

Luke 2:49-50 And he said unto them, How is it that ye sought me? wist ye not that I must be about my Father's business? And they understood not the saying which he spake unto them. (Here the word "saying" is the word rhema.)

Luke 5:4-5 Now when he had left speaking, he said unto Simon, Launch out into the deep, and let down your nets for a draught. And Simon answering said unto him, Master, we have toiled all the night, and have taken nothing: nevertheless at thy word I will let down the net.

Luke 1:35-38 And the angel answered and said unto her, The Holy Ghost shall come upon thee, and the power of the Highest shall overshadow thee: therefore also that holy thing which shall be born of thee shall be called the Son of God. And, behold, thy cousin Elisabeth, she hath also conceived a son in her old age: and this is the sixth month with her, who was called barren. For with God nothing shall be impossible. And Mary said, Behold the handmaid of the Lord; be it unto me according to thy word. And the angel departed from her. (In this passage, the word rhema is used twice in reference to God's specific promise/statement that Mary would bear the Messiah, through the miracle of the virgin birth. The word "nothing" here is also the word rhema - this verse is indicating that nothing - that God has said or promised specifically - would be impossible to Him. The Lord keeps His promises to us! If we claim His promises and do our part, the Lord will surely do His! When we pray according to God's will - which means according to the Word of God - nothing He has said will be impossible, but will instead be fulfilled.)

Luke 24:6-8 He is not here, but is risen: remember how he spake unto you when he was yet in Galilee, Saying, The Son of man must be delivered into the hands of sinful men, and be crucified, and the third day rise again. And they remembered his words.

John 12:47-48 And if any man hear my words, and believe not, I judge him not: for I came not to judge the world, but to save the world. He that rejecteth me, and receiveth not my words, hath one that judgeth him: the word that I have spoken, the same shall judge him in the last day. (Here Jesus is speaking to the multitude, referring to specific sayings He has told them in His testifying to them - but then He states that if they refuse to heed His words - rhema - and get saved, they will be judged by His Word - logos, referring to the entirety of the Word of God.)

2 Peter 3:1-2 This second epistle, beloved, I now write unto you; in both which I stir up your pure minds by way of remembrance: That ye may be mindful of the words which were spoken before by the holy prophets, and of the commandment of us the apostles of the Lord and Saviour: (Specific words being referred to.)

Jude 1:17-18 But, beloved, remember ye the words which were spoken before of the apostles of our Lord Jesus Christ; How that they told you there should be mockers in the last time, who should walk after their own ungodly lusts.

Notice in the following passages that it is specifically the Gospel (the good news of salvation) that was being referred to, not the whole Word of God in general:

John 6:63 It is the spirit that quickeneth; the flesh profiteth nothing: the words that I speak unto you, they are spirit, and they are life.

John 6:68 Then Simon Peter answered him, Lord, to whom shall we go? thou hast the words of eternal life.

Acts 5:20 Go, stand and speak in the temple to the people all the words of this life.

Acts 10:22 And they said, Cornelius the centurion, a just man, and one that feareth God, and of good report among all the nation of the Jews, was warned from God by an holy angel to send for thee into his house, and to hear words of thee.

Acts 11:14 Who shall tell thee words, whereby thou and all thy house shall be saved.

Romans 10:8 But what saith it? The word is nigh thee, even in thy mouth, and in thy heart: that is, the word of faith, which we preach; That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.

1 Peter 1:25 But the word of the Lord endureth for ever. And this is the word which by the gospel is preached unto you.

To cap off this study, here are some specific words we need:

1) Words to live by:

Matthew 4:4 But he answered and said, It is written, Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God.

Yes, we need the whole Word of God - but we live by each daily portion. If we want to overcome the devil in our day to day spiritual battles, we need to do what Jesus did in His temptation in the wilderness: He quoted specific passages of Scripture that refuted the temptations of Satan. All three passages that Jesus quoted were from the book of Deuteronomy, and each one specifically addressed what the devil was saying.

2) Words to fight our spiritual battles by:

In Jesus' example, we see the sword of the Spirit (the Word of God) in action:

Ephesians 6:17 And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God:

This is an active use of the Word of God - offensively using passages of Scripture (specific portions) in our witnessing, in resisting the devil, in fighting temptation, in exhorting our brethren; whereas the shield of faith (see next point) is defensively using the Bible to stop the devil's lies, temptations and slanders - his fiery darts - from taking lodge in our hearts and minds. In both cases, we need specific portions of the Word of God - portions that address the particular battle we are facing.

3) Words to trust by:

Romans 10:17 So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.

It is specific passages and portions that will increase our faith in each area of our lives. For example, if we want to grow in our faith in the area of God's provision in our lives, we need to study out passages, promises, and principles dealing particularly with that.

4) Words to pray by:

John 15:7 If ye abide in me, and my words abide in you, ye shall ask what ye will, and it shall be done unto you.

Specific portions of the Word of God that applied to the particular request being prayed for. If we want to pray according to God's will (and therefore be assured that our requests will be answered - see 1 John 5:14-15), we first need to dig into the Word of God and find passages that teach us what His will is in each area we are praying for.

5) Words to cleanse our lives by:

Ephesians 5:26 That he might sanctify and cleanse it with the washing of water by the word.

Here we see that it is specific passages that cleanse us in our daily walks with the Lord. As James 1:22-25 refers to, we need to see our sin and the solution, then apply those specific passages to our lives - and God says His Word will cleanse us.

Are you living by the Word (rhema) of God - living each day by specific passages, taking and applying to your life each portion that particularly addresses it? Fighting your battles and using both the Sword of the Spirit and the shield of faith to protect yourself against specific attacks and wiles of the Devil? Building your faith by digging in the Bible and clinging to certain promises? Praying according to particular passages? And cleansing your heart and conduct by what God has revealed in His Word?

June 25th/06
Jerry Bouey

Friday, June 23, 2006

Shadows And Wings

One theme that I enjoy reading in the Psalms is that of being under God's shadow, under His wings. The idea there is that of protection and safety, provision and security, and also of tenderness.

Song of Solomon 2:3 As the apple tree among the trees of the wood, so is my beloved among the sons. I sat down under his shadow with great delight, and his fruit was sweet to my taste.

There is an element of quietness and assurance under God's shadow. There we can be free from worry and fear, and there we can have rest in the presence of our Saviour.

Psalms 91:1 He that dwelleth in the secret place of the most High shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty.

It is a place where we can dwell in safety - knowing that the Lord is in control and is watching over us. God's shadow is a place of refuge - a place we can run to in the storms of life; a place of refreshing in the heat of the trials we face; a place where we can abide in perfect peace of mind and contentment in the midst of the wickedness of this sin-cursed world.

Isaiah 4:6 And there shall be a tabernacle for a shadow in the daytime from the heat, and for a place of refuge, and for a covert from storm and from rain.

Isaiah 25:4 For thou hast been a strength to the poor, a strength to the needy in his distress, a refuge from the storm, a shadow from the heat, when the blast of the terrible ones is as a storm against the wall.

Isaiah 32:2 And a man shall be as an hiding place from the wind, and a covert from the tempest; as rivers of water in a dry place, as the shadow of a great rock in a weary land.

Lamentations 4:20 The breath of our nostrils, the anointed of the LORD, was taken in their pits, of whom we said, Under his shadow we shall live among the heathen. (This verse is referring primarily to King Josiah, who was a type of the Lord Jesus Christ. Yes, the Anointed of the Lord - the Messiah, Jesus Christ - was taken and killed, but He arose from the dead and is alive forevermore - all those who place their faith in Him are living in His shadow, though we may be living among the heathen.)

Our Heavenly Father will bear His children up on His wings - on His wings He carries us and draws us close to Himself; on His wings He bears us up and teaches us how to fly - how to mount up with wings as eagles above our circumstances and trials.

Exodus 19:4 Ye have seen what I did unto the Egyptians, and how I bare you on eagles' wings, and brought you unto myself.

Deuteronomy 32:11-12 As an eagle stirreth up her nest, fluttereth over her young, spreadeth abroad her wings, taketh them, beareth them on her wings: So the LORD alone did lead him, and there was no strange god with him.

Under our Lord's wings we are nourished; under His wings we are protected and covered; and under His wings we are held close to His heart.

Ruth 2:12 The LORD recompense thy work, and a full reward be given thee of the LORD God of Israel, under whose wings thou art come to trust.

Psalms 61:4 I will abide in thy tabernacle for ever: I will trust in the covert of thy wings. Selah.

Psalms 91:4 He shall cover thee with his feathers, and under his wings shalt thou trust: his truth shall be thy shield and buckler.

Matthew 23:37 O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, thou that killest the prophets, and stonest them which are sent unto thee, how often would I have gathered thy children together, even as a hen gathereth her chickens under her wings, and ye would not!

In the wings of our Saviour, the Lord Jesus Christ, we find healing.

Malachi 4:2 But unto you that fear my name shall the Sun of righteousness arise with healing in his wings; and ye shall go forth, and grow up as calves of the stall.

There are also various passages where these two ideas are put together - the shadow of His wings.

Under the shadow of His wings we find shelter - shelter from strife and from the maliciousness of our enemies; under the shadow of His wings we can trust Him to watch over us in His providential care; under the shadow of His wings we can find comfort in His presence during the midst of the storms; in the shadow of His wings we can rest secure in Him - knowing that His wrath will not touch us and that we are kept safe in all our trials - everything that we face as His children is in His sovereign control, and is allowed for a purpose, even the Refiner's fire: "Every joy or trial falleth from above, traced upon our dial by the Son of Love."

Psalms 17:8 Keep me as the apple of the eye, hide me under the shadow of thy wings.

Psalms 36:7 How excellent is thy lovingkindness, O God! therefore the children of men put their trust under the shadow of thy wings.

Psalms 57:1 Be merciful unto me, O God, be merciful unto me: for my soul trusteth in thee: yea, in the shadow of thy wings will I make my refuge, until these calamities be overpast.

God's shadow and wings - the best place to be if you're His child (through faith in Christ alone for salvation) is in His shadow, and under the shadow and shelter of His wings.

Shadows and wings - the place of refuge, safety, rest, security, and rejoicing:

Psalms 63:7 Because thou hast been my help, therefore in the shadow of thy wings will I rejoice.

June 23rd/06
Jerry Bouey

For a study that builds on this theme:

Genesis 15 - Thy Shield

For a list of studies that use the Song of Solomon as the springboard:

Song Of Solomon

Wednesday, June 21, 2006

Marrow In Your Bones - Spiritually

This was something I had posted on a message board in March 2005, when my Mom was undergoing cancer treatments and the complications that resulted from that:

What happens when the marrow in your bones is depleted and how does that effect you physically? This is what my Mom is experiencing due to her health problems this past year. When she mentioned the fact of her marrow being depleted last week, it caused me to think of several passages in the Scriptures. I was wondering how the physical effects could picture spiritual effects.

Psalms 32:3-5 When I kept silence, my bones waxed old through my roaring all the day long. For day and night Thy hand was heavy upon me: my moisture is turned into the drought of summer. Selah. I acknowledged my sin unto Thee, and mine iniquity have I not hid. I said, I will confess my transgressions unto the LORD; and Thou forgavest the iniquity of my sin. Selah.

Job 21:24 His breasts are full of milk, and his bones are moistened with marrow.

Psalms 63:5 My soul shall be satisfied as with marrow and fatness; and my mouth shall praise Thee with joyful lips:

Proverbs 3:8 It shall be health to thy navel, and marrow to thy bones.

I have read some commentaries where they state the moisture and the marrow is referring to spiritual vitality. Is your physical vitality or strength lost when your bone marrow is being depleted or the moisture is diminishing - and vice-versa? How does that relate to the spiritual picture?

I remember reading Spurgeon's comments a while ago on Psalm 32, from his Treasury of David, so I will also post those here:

Verses 3-5. David now gives us his own experience: no instructor is so efficient as one who testifies to what he has personally known and felt. He writes well who like the spider spins his matter out of his own bowels.

Verse 3. When I kept silence. When through neglect I failed to confess, or through despair dared not do so, my bones, those solid pillars of my frame, the stronger portions of my bodily constitution, waxed old, began to decay with weakness, for my grief was so intense as to sap my health and destroy my vital energy. What a killing thing is sin! It is a pestilent disease! A fire in the bones! While we smother our sin it rages within, and like a gathering wound swells horribly and torments terribly. Through my roaring all the day long. He was silent as to confession, but not as to sorrow. Horror at his great guilt, drove David to incessant laments, until his voice was no longer like the articulate speech of man, but so full of sighing and groaning, that it resembled to hoarse roaring of a wounded beast. None knows the pangs of conviction but those who have endured them. The rack, the wheel, the flaming fagot are ease compared with the Tophet which a guilty conscience kindles within the breast: better suffer all the diseases which flesh is heir to, than lie under the crushing sense of the wrath of almighty God. The Spanish inquisition with all its tortures was nothing to the inquest which conscience holds within the heart.

Verse 4. For day and night thy hand was heavy upon me. God's finger can crush us — what must his hand be, and that pressing heavily and continuously! Under terrors of conscience, men have little rest by night, for the grim thoughts of the day dog them to their chambers and haunt their dreams, or else they lie awake in a cold sweat of dread. God's hand is very helpful when it uplifts, but it is awful when it presses down: better a world on the shoulder, like Atlas, than God's hand on the heart, like David. My moisture is turned into the drought of summer. The sap of his soul was dried, and the body through sympathy appeared to be bereft of its needful fluids. The oil was almost gone from the lamp of life, and the flame flickered as though it would soon expire. Unconfessed transgression, like a fierce poison, dried up the fountain of the man's strength and made him like a tree blasted by the lightning, or a plant withered by the scorching heat of a tropical sun. Alas! for a poor soul when it has learned its sin but forgets its Saviour, it goes hard with it indeed. Selah. It was time to change the tune, for the notes are very low in the scale, and with such hard usage, the strings of the harp are out of order: the next verse will surely be set to another key, or will rehearse a more joyful subject.

Verse 5. I acknowledged my sin unto thee. After long lingering, the broken heart bethought itself of what it ought to have done at the first, and laid bare its bosom before the Lord. The lancet must be let into the gathering ulcer before relief can be afforded. The least thing we can do, if we would be pardoned, is to acknowledge our fault; if we are too proud for this we double deserve punishment. And mine iniquity have I not hid. We must confess the guilt as well as the fact of sin. It is useless to conceal it, for it is well known to God; it is beneficial to us to own it, for a full confession softens and humbles the heart. We must as far as possible unveil the secrets of the soul, dig up the hidden treasure of Achan, and by weight and measure bring out our sins. I said. This was his fixed resolution. I will confess my transgressions unto the Lord. Not to my fellow men or to the high priest, but unto Jehovah; even in those days of symbol the faithful looked to God alone for deliverance from sin's intolerable load, much more now, when types and shadows have vanished at the appearance of the dawn. When the soul determines to lay low and plead guilty, absolution is near at hand; hence we read, And thou forgavest the iniquity of my sin. Not only was the sin itself pardoned, but the iniquity of it; the virus of its guilt was put away, and that at once, so soon as the acknowledgment was made. God's pardons are deep and thorough: the knife of mercy cuts at the roots of the ill weed of sin. Selah. Another pause is needed, for the matter is not such as may be hurried over.

"Pause, my soul, adore and wonder,
Ask, O why such love to me?
Grace has put me in the number
Of the Saviour's family.
Hallelujah!
Thanks, eternal thanks, to thee."

A couple more quotations from the same book:

Verse 4. My moisture is turned into the drought of summer. Another meaning may be attributed to these words. We may suppose the psalmist to be referring to spiritual drought.

Verse 4. My moisture is turned into the drought of summer. The summer is from the middle of August to the middle of November. The intensity of the heat is great, and almost intolerable...

For more studies that use passages in the Psalms as the springboard:

Psalms Series

EXpiration Or INspiration?

Breathed Out Or Breathed In?

2 Timothy 3:16 All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness:

Most people refer to Inspiration in the manner that God "breathed OUT" the Scriptures, and therefore this only refers to the originals. Ie. in the sense that He breathed out the exact Hebrew, Greek, and Aramaic words - therefore some of these same people have a problem with using the term inspiration to refer to copies or translations (though that is EXACTLY what the Apostle Paul WAS referring to in the above verse).

But the English word INspiration and the Greek word theopneustos both mean "breathed IN" (for clarity's sake - the Greek word means "God breathed" - see below definition - and the English equivalent is the phrase "given by inspiration of God"), not "breathed OUT" - that would be "EXpiration".

Strong's #2315 theopneustos
from 2316 and a presumed derivative of 4154; divinely breathed in:-- given by inspiration of God.

Practically, is there any theological difference between these two concepts? I believe there is.

When I think of God breathing into the Word of God, I think of the Holy Spirit giving life to the Words of Scripture - so they are not just some dry, dusty words penned in the original languages, but the living Word of God. Therefore if this is right, then the inspiration of Scripture is not limited solely to the words originally given - but also to all faithful copies and foreign translations (ie. into other languages) of that Word.

Some verses along this theme:

Hebrews 4:12 For the word of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any twoedged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart.

1 Peter 1:23-25 Being born again, not of corruptible seed, but of incorruptible, by the word of God, which liveth and abideth for ever. For all flesh is as grass, and all the glory of man as the flower of grass. The grass withereth, and the flower thereof falleth away: But the word of the Lord endureth for ever. And this is the word which by the gospel is preached unto you.

For the record, I do believe that the King James Bible IS God's inspired, preserved Word for English-speaking believers today. I believe we HAVE God's Word and can hold it in our hands, read from it, study it - and yea, even live from every word that proceedeth (present tense) out of the mouth of God, as Matthew 4:4 teaches - in order to live by every word of His Word we have to have it preserved for us; and we do - just as He promised.

August 9th/05
Jerry Bouey

I found this article on the same theme interesting:

Scripture: Inspired or Expired? By Moses LemuelRaj

Genesis: Claiming The Promises

In studying out Bible types, one theme that has intrigued me for years has been the command to Abraham (then later to Joshua) to claim the land.

Genesis 13:14-17 And the LORD said unto Abram, after that Lot was separated from him, Lift up now thine eyes, and look from the place where thou art northward, and southward, and eastward, and westward: For all the land which thou seest, to thee will I give it, and to thy seed for ever. And I will make thy seed as the dust of the earth: so that if a man can number the dust of the earth, then shall thy seed also be numbered. Arise, walk through the land in the length of it and in the breadth of it; for I will give it unto thee.

Joshua 1:2-6 Moses my servant is dead; now therefore arise, go over this Jordan, thou, and all this people, unto the land which I do give to them, even to the children of Israel. Every place that the sole of your foot shall tread upon, that have I given unto you, as I said unto Moses. From the wilderness and this Lebanon even unto the great river, the river Euphrates, all the land of the Hittites, and unto the great sea toward the going down of the sun, shall be your coast. There shall not any man be able to stand before thee all the days of thy life: as I was with Moses, so I will be with thee: I will not fail thee, nor forsake thee. Be strong and of a good courage: for unto this people shalt thou divide for an inheritance the land, which I sware unto their fathers to give them.

Now, before I get accused of taking anything out of context, I will clarify and state that I believe these passages are literally referring to the land of Israel - the land that God first promised to Abraham, and then later led Joshua, the leader of Israel, to go in and take possession of.

Many times I have thought about how the Promised Land represents our victory in Christ and the Canaanites represents the sins in our lives that the Lord wants us to conquer through faith in Him. (See these two studies for a look at these types in Scripture: Rest For Your Souls - The Rest Of Victory In Christ, Conquering The Canaanites In Your Life) Because of looking at these types and related passages, I have also become convinced that these commands to Abraham and Joshua also picture something spiritually to us - not in physically or even spiritually claiming actual land or some geographical area (as some would claim is the application, though I am convinced does not fit Scripture) - that will one day be fulfilled literally during the Millenial reign of Christ when the nation of Israel (Abraham's descendents) will finally dwell in and own all the land they were promised. I believe the spiritual application of these passages is something entirely different.

We are promised all spiritual blessings in Christ:

Ephesians 1:3 Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ:

I believe the land we are to claim are the promises found in God's Word. We are to go through the land of the Scriptures, walk about the length and breadth of them - From Genesis To Revelation - find the promises that the Lord wants to give us, and then claim them by faith. How many believers do this? Not enough from what I have seen! There are many promises and passages that the average Christian is woefully ignorant of - yet those very same promises and passages would have helped them so much in the battles or struggles they faced day by day!

Too many people want to find satisfaction and fulfillment outside of the Lord Jesus Christ and His Word - as if these weren't enough to equip us for the Christian life. Yet I find that this is exactly what we need - a living, vital relationship with Christ and a heart that meditates on and digs into His Word.

2 Timothy 3:16-17 All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness: That the man of God may be perfect, throughly furnished unto all good works.

Perfect means to make complete. It is only the Scriptures studied and applied through the wisdom of the indwelling Holy Spirit that have the power to equip us for all that we will face in our Christian walk, in our service, in our witness for Christ.

Notice the following passage:

2 Peter 1:3-4 According as his divine power hath given unto us all things that pertain unto life and godliness, through the knowledge of him that hath called us to glory and virtue: Whereby are given unto us exceeding great and precious promises: that by these ye might be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust.

2 Corinthians 1:19-20 For the Son of God, Jesus Christ, who was preached among you by us, even by me and Silvanus and Timotheus, was not yea and nay, but in him was yea. For all the promises of God in him are yea, and in him Amen, unto the glory of God by us.

The Old Testament saints lived by the promises of God - some they saw fulfilled in their lives, others (like the promise of inheriting the land, the promise of the coming Messiah, the promise of the future resurrection, etc.) they did not see - but these promises were or would be fulfilled nonetheless; some during the course of their lives (such as promises regarding daily provision, guidance, protection, etc.), and some much later - during Christ's first or second comings (such as promises regarding His complete atonement for our sins, His covenants and His reigning from Jerusalem, His judging of their enemies, etc.). Hebrews chapter eleven is an excellent passage showing the victory of OT saints through faith - and we have their examples to learn from:

Hebrews 11:13 These all died in faith, not having received the promises, but having seen them afar off, and were persuaded of them, and embraced them, and confessed that they were strangers and pilgrims on the earth.

Hebrews 11:32-38 And what shall I more say? for the time would fail me to tell of Gedeon, and of Barak, and of Samson, and of Jephthae; of David also, and Samuel, and of the prophets: Who through faith subdued kingdoms, wrought righteousness, obtained promises, stopped the mouths of lions, Quenched the violence of fire, escaped the edge of the sword, out of weakness were made strong, waxed valiant in fight, turned to flight the armies of the aliens. Women received their dead raised to life again: and others were tortured, not accepting deliverance; that they might obtain a better resurrection: And others had trial of cruel mockings and scourgings, yea, moreover of bonds and imprisonment: They were stoned, they were sawn asunder, were tempted, were slain with the sword: they wandered about in sheepskins and goatskins; being destitute, afflicted, tormented; (Of whom the world was not worthy:) they wandered in deserts, and in mountains, and in dens and caves of the earth.

These promises of God contain all that we need to live the victorious Christian life through faith - everything from grace and strength to daily provision and guidance; from forgiveness and peace of mind to intimacy with our Heavenly Father.

For further thought, consider these sevenfold promises:

1) The promise of closeness with God through being separated from evil unto Him:

2 Corinthians 6:14-18 Be ye not unequally yoked together with unbelievers: for what fellowship hath righteousness with unrighteousness? and what communion hath light with darkness? And what concord hath Christ with Belial? or what part hath he that believeth with an infidel? And what agreement hath the temple of God with idols? for ye are the temple of the living God; as God hath said,
a) I will dwell in them,
b) and walk in them;
c) and I will be their God,
d) and they shall be my people.
Wherefore come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing;
e) and I will receive you,
f) And will be a Father unto you,
g) and ye shall be my sons and daughters, saith the Lord Almighty.


The very next verse gives us this exhortation:

2 Corinthians 7:1 Having therefore these promises, dearly beloved, let us cleanse ourselves from all filthiness of the flesh and spirit, perfecting holiness in the fear of God.

2) The promise of having everything we need to do the good works that the Lord has prepared for us to do (see Ephesians 2:10):

2 Corinthians 9:8 And God is able to make all grace abound toward you; that ye, always having all sufficiency in all things, may abound to every good work:

When was the last time you walked spiritually through the Promised Land - or should I say, the Land of Promise? When was the last time you searched through the Scriptures, looking through the length and breadth of God's Word for promises that applied to the situations you were currently facing, and then claimed them by faith? Isn't it about time you took another stroll? There are more promises waiting to be discovered! Claim some today!

Hebrews 6:12 That ye be not slothful, but followers of them who through faith and patience inherit the promises.

God's Precious Promises

God's precious promises are tried,
In the furnace of life - they are purified.
Every single promise of the Lord is true;
Test them yourself and watch Him come through.

For these precious promises there are conditions;
For this treasure, not everyone can stake a claim.
God's precious promises are only for His children -
For whosoever has called upon the Saviour's name.

For Noah's family, there was the rainbow,
For Abraham, there was his greatly beloved son,
For every child of God, there's perfect peace of mind,
blessings innumerable, and victories to be won.

In Jesus Christ, all these promises abound;
In the pages of His holy Word they are found.
They have been purified in this furnace of earth,
Test them yourself and discover their worth!

Poem written April 8th/02
Devotional June 21st/06
Jerry Bouey

For more studies in Genesis (with Genesis as the springboard):

Genesis

Tuesday, June 20, 2006

The Great Commission

It is interesting to note that there are five places in the New Testament that the Great Commission is given to Jesus' disciples (the NT church) - but each passage has a slightly different emphasis:

The Content Of The Great Commission:

Luke 24:46-49 And said unto them, Thus it is written, and thus it behoved Christ to suffer, and to rise from the dead the third day: And that repentance and remission of sins should be preached in his name among all nations, beginning at Jerusalem. And ye are witnesses of these things. And, behold, I send the promise of my Father upon you: but tarry ye in the city of Jerusalem, until ye be endued with power from on high.

The Recipients Of This Commission:

Mark 16:15-16 And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature. He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned.

Who's To Go Fulfill It:

All New Testament believers - John 20:21 Then said Jesus to them again, Peace be unto you: as my Father hath sent me, even so send I you.

How To Fulfill The Great Commission:

Witness/preach the Gospel, baptize converts, teach them Bible doctrine (build them up in the faith) - Matthew 28:18-20 And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth. Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world. Amen.

Where To Start (The Plan Of Action):

Start at your Jerusalem, the place where you live, then go out further from there, to the regions beyond you - Acts 1:8 But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth.

In Matthew 28:18 we also have on whose authority we are to go and preach the Gospel - the risen Christ's.

In Acts 1:8 we have the power for our service - the Holy Spirit working in and through us.

In Mark 16:20 and all through the book of Acts we have the church in action, going out on the authority of Jesus and in the power of the Holy Spirit, fulfilling this Great Commission, bringing the Gospel of Christ to a lost and dying world.

Are you and your local church a part of fulfilling this Great Commission?

June 20th/06
Jerry Bouey

Thursday, June 15, 2006

A Song In The Night

I have been meditating a lot on the book of Job lately, and last night at church I figured out what the Lord would have me preach on Friday - In The Dark - from Job 9:11; 23:8-10; 35:10, 14; and Isaiah 50:10-11. Also, I was thinking of some of those passages sort of to the tune of Since The Saviour Found Me (it was the last song we sang before the message). I know the syllables don't completely fit the song, but they can go to the basic tune, if it was adapted slightly.

A Song In The Night

Though darkness hides the sunlight,
A song is in my soul;
In the night of my affliction,
The Lord is in control.

I cannot see His footsteps –
The path He leads me down;
All the way, there’s a promise:
His path leads to a crown.

Within the stormy blackness,
Jesus has His eye on me;
Though the darkness hide Him,
By faith I still can see.

Though nighttime falls around me,
The cross leads to the tomb,
My footsteps will not falter,
His Word lights up the gloom.

Though I know not the journey,
The Lord will take me through;
I will trust in my Saviour –
He has my best in view.

Even though my steps be darkened,
My Father knows the way;
And He will safely guide me –
From the shadows into day.

June 14th/06
Jerry Bouey

But none saith, Where is God my maker, who giveth songs in the night.
Although thou sayest thou shalt not see him, yet judgment is before him;
therefore trust thou in him.

Job 35:10, 14

Monday, June 12, 2006

Genesis: God Remembered

Did you ever stop to think about what God meant when He said He remembered someone or something? Our omniscient (all-knowing) God surely cannot forget about His creation. Yet we find statements like this in Scripture:

And God remembered Noah...
God remembered Abraham...
God remembered His covenant with Abraham, with Isaac, and with Jacob...


It is not that God forgot, but that now it was time for God to act! To step in on behalf of His chosen people, His nation of Israel, or individual believers who have placed their faith in Him - act on their behalf, move in response to their heartfelt cries and prayers, and resolve their dilemma or relieve their distress.

Now it was time to remember Noah, abate the waters off the earth, bring Noah, his family, and all the animals safely out of the ark:

Genesis 8:1-3 And God remembered Noah, and every living thing, and all the cattle that was with him in the ark: and God made a wind to pass over the earth, and the waters asswaged; The fountains also of the deep and the windows of heaven were stopped, and the rain from heaven was restrained; And the waters returned from off the earth continually: and after the end of the hundred and fifty days the waters were abated.

Now it was time to remember Abraham's prayers and protect his nephew, Lot:

Genesis 19:29 And it came to pass, when God destroyed the cities of the plain, that God remembered Abraham, and sent Lot out of the midst of the overthrow, when he overthrew the cities in the which Lot dwelt.

Now it was time to remember certain women, and answer their prayers for children:

Genesis 30:22 And God remembered Rachel, and God hearkened to her, and opened her womb.

1 Samuel 1:19 And they rose up in the morning early, and worshipped before the LORD, and returned, and came to their house to Ramah: and Elkanah knew Hannah his wife; and the LORD remembered her.

Now it was time to remember His covenant, and to deliver His people from their Egyptian bondage, to act on their behalf and fulfill His promises toward them:

Exodus 2:24 And God heard their groaning, and God remembered his covenant with Abraham, with Isaac, and with Jacob. (See also 6:5)

Psalms 105:8, 42 He hath remembered his covenant for ever, the word which he commanded to a thousand generations... For he remembered his holy promise, and Abraham his servant. (See the context of the chapter and notice how God acted on behalf of Abraham's descendants, the nation of Israel.)

Psalms 106:43-45 Many times did he deliver them; but they provoked him with their counsel, and were brought low for their iniquity. Nevertheless he regarded their affliction, when he heard their cry: And he remembered for them his covenant, and repented according to the multitude of his mercies.

Now it was time to remember Israel and deliver them from their enemies:

Numbers 10:9 And if ye go to war in your land against the enemy that oppresseth you, then ye shall blow an alarm with the trumpets; and ye shall be remembered before the LORD your God, and ye shall be saved from your enemies.

Now it was time to remember the weakness of His chosen people, and to show them His mercy:

Psalms 78:38-39 But he, being full of compassion, forgave their iniquity, and destroyed them not: yea, many a time turned he his anger away, and did not stir up all his wrath. For he remembered that they were but flesh; a wind that passeth away, and cometh not again.

Psalms 136:23 Who remembered us in our low estate: for his mercy endureth for ever:

Luke 1:54 He hath holpen his servant Israel, in remembrance of his mercy;

Now it was time to remember the lost, and to remember those who were earnestly seeking the truth and the true God from their heart, and bring them the Gospel of Jesus Christ so they could receive it and be saved:

Psalms 98:3 He hath remembered his mercy and his truth toward the house of Israel: all the ends of the earth have seen the salvation of our God.

Acts 10:31 And said, Cornelius, thy prayer is heard, and thine alms are had in remembrance in the sight of God.

Now it was time to remember end-times Babylon and judge her for her sins:

Revelation 16:19 And the great city was divided into three parts, and the cities of the nations fell: and great Babylon came in remembrance before God, to give unto her the cup of the wine of the fierceness of his wrath.

Revelation 18:5 For her sins have reached unto heaven, and God hath remembered her iniquities.

On a contrary note: when God says He will not remember someone or some nation because of their sins, then the passage indicates an active opposition against them. See Lamentations 2:1; Ezekiel 3:20; 33:13.

For further consideration (a project for me to dig in a bit more as well): look up all the passages where God's people were told to remember, or where they remembered or brought something into remembrance. When a Biblical promise, precept, person, or past history was brought to mind, they acted on it by faith. When reminded of God's promises, they stepped out in faith and served Him. When reminded of His people, they prayed for them, and praised the Lord for the work He was doing in their lives. When reminded of God's past deliverances and faithfulness, they worshipped Him and gave Him the glory. When reminded of His commandments to them, they obeyed.

Their remembrance was active - and so should ours be! The Biblical example is acting on that remembrance, stepping out in faith, or in obedience, or in prayer - not just momentarily thinking about something and then dismissing it from mind once again.

John 14:26 But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you.

June 12th/06
Jerry Bouey

For more studies in Genesis (with Genesis as the springboard):

Genesis

Genesis: God's Sovereignty

At times I will be reading some passage of Scripture, and be reminded anew of God's sovereignty over His creation. Take for example this passage:

Genesis 6:19 And of every living thing of all flesh, two of every sort shalt thou bring into the ark, to keep them alive with thee; they shall be male and female.

What if God wasn't keeping those animals safe in the ark for that year? What if they were to die on the journey? That would be it for that species! What if when Noah released the animals from the ark the lions decided they wanted a chicken dinner, and ate up a bunch of the other animals before they had an opportunity to be fruitful and multiply? What if some of these wild animals got hungry and had a taste for Shem Kabobs and Ham burgers? Goodbye human race...

But God was in control then, and still is today. Consider the following passage:

Matthew 10:29-31 Are not two sparrows sold for a farthing? and one of them shall not fall on the ground without your Father. But the very hairs of your head are all numbered. Fear ye not therefore, ye are of more value than many sparrows.

Luke 12:6-7 Are not five sparrows sold for two farthings, and not one of them is forgotten before God? But even the very hairs of your head are all numbered. Fear not therefore: ye are of more value than many sparrows.

I don't think this means that God merely knows when one of His creatures dies, but that He is in complete control of their life and death. Near the end of his life, the apostle Paul possibly had these passages in mind when he faced being shipwrecked once again:

Acts 27:22-25 And now I exhort you to be of good cheer: for there shall be no loss of any man's life among you, but of the ship. For there stood by me this night the angel of God, whose I am, and whom I serve, Saying, Fear not, Paul; thou must be brought before Caesar: and, lo, God hath given thee all them that sail with thee. Wherefore, sirs, be of good cheer: for I believe God, that it shall be even as it was told me.

Then a little later he makes this statement:

Acts 27:34 Wherefore I pray you to take some meat: for this is for your health: for there shall not an hair fall from the head of any of you.

And in verse 37, we have God's count of all the lives that were on that ship. Different situation, with a different outcome, but just as God was in control of the lives on that first ship (Noah's ark), even so He was in control of the lives on the ship Paul sailed in - and is still in control today.

June 12th/06
Jerry Bouey

For more studies in Genesis (with Genesis as the springboard):

Genesis

Monday, June 05, 2006

Earthen Vessels

John 9:1-7 And as Jesus passed by, he saw a man which was blind from his birth. And his disciples asked him, saying, Master, who did sin, this man, or his parents, that he was born blind? Jesus answered, Neither hath this man sinned, nor his parents: but that the works of God should be made manifest in him. I must work the works of him that sent me, while it is day: the night cometh, when no man can work. As long as I am in the world, I am the light of the world. When he had thus spoken, he spat on the ground, and made clay of the spittle, and he anointed the eyes of the blind man with the clay, And said unto him, Go, wash in the pool of Siloam, (which is by interpretation, Sent.) He went his way therefore, and washed, and came seeing.

Jesus is not limited by methodology - He healed various people in various ways. He even healed blind men in several different ways. Many find His actions here puzzling, but I find them intriguing. Why did Jesus heal the man with clay He had formed with His own hands? I think a look at various passages of Scripture will give us the answer.

Jesus indicated that the man that was born blind was made so by God that the works of God should be made manifest in him. It wasn't an accident - God had a purpose in this disability. God the Father was glorified and Jesus Christ was exalted through the healing of this man, but I also believe that Jesus was proclaiming who He was through this miracle.

On the sixth day of creation, the Lord God formed man - out of the earth:

Genesis 2:7 And the LORD God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul.

The man (and the human race) was named Adam, signifying what he was made out of physically: earth or red earth. In fact, there are various places in the Bible where our bodies are referred to as earthen vessels. Several are:

2 Timothy 2:20-21 But in a great house there are not only vessels of gold and of silver, but also of wood and of earth; and some to honour, and some to dishonour. If a man therefore purge himself from these, he shall be a vessel unto honour, sanctified, and meet for the master's use, and prepared unto every good work.

Lamentations 4:1-2 How is the gold become dim! how is the most fine gold changed! the stones of the sanctuary are poured out in the top of every street. The precious sons of Zion, comparable to fine gold, how are they esteemed as earthen pitchers, the work of the hands of the potter!

Webster's 1828 Dictionary defines vessel as: Something containing. He gives the following examples:

Vessels of wrath, in Scripture, are such persons as are to receive the full effects of God's wrath and indignation, as a punishment for their sins.

Vessels of mercy, are persons who are to receive the effects of God's mercy, or future happiness and glory.

Chosen vessels, ministers of the gospel, as appointed to bear the glad news of salvation to others; called also earthen vessels, on account of their weakness and frailty.

Romans 9:20-23 Nay but, O man, who art thou that repliest against God? Shall the thing formed say to him that formed it, Why hast thou made me thus? Hath not the potter power over the clay, of the same lump to make one vessel unto honour, and another unto dishonour? What if God, willing to shew his wrath, and to make his power known, endured with much longsuffering the vessels of wrath fitted to destruction: And that he might make known the riches of his glory on the vessels of mercy, which he had afore prepared unto glory.

Two other passages that portray earthen vessels as types are found in:

Leviticus 14:5 And the priest shall command that one of the birds be killed in an earthen vessel over running water. This is a type of the Lord Jesus Christ, the Son of God who came down from Heaven, to be killed in a human body - an earthen vessel. (See my study on Leprosy for further explanation of this type.)

Jeremiah 32:14 Thus saith the LORD of hosts, the God of Israel; Take these evidences, this evidence of the purchase, both which is sealed, and this evidence which is open; and put them in an earthen vessel, that they may continue many days. This is a wonderful type of the believer - though it is beyond the scope of this study to expound on it. (Lord willing, one of these days I hope to get my friend's sermon notes on this passage, where he really opens up this neat picture. He preached his message about three or four years ago.)

Webster's gives this definition of earthen: Made of earth; made of clay; as an earthen vessel.

Earth when mixed with water becomes clay. It is interesting to note that the verse just prior to the account of God making man out of the dust of the ground states this:

Genesis 2:6 But there went up a mist from the earth, and watered the whole face of the ground.

I had always connected this verse with the previous verse (verse 5) about the plants and herbs and the fact that it had not rained yet - but today I noticed it in connection with verse 7. Scientifically, we know that our bodies contain the same chemical elements as common dirt, and that we are composed mostly of water. Earth and water... Clay - in the hands of the Potter!

Isaiah 64:8 But now, O LORD, thou art our father; we are the clay, and thou our potter; and we all are the work of thy hand.

Isaiah 45:9 Woe unto him that striveth with his Maker! Let the potsherd strive with the potsherds of the earth. Shall the clay say to him that fashioneth it, What makest thou? or thy work, He hath no hands?

This is probably the most known passage on the Lord God being the Potter and man being a clay vessel in His hands:

Jeremiah 18:2-6 Arise, and go down to the potter's house, and there I will cause thee to hear my words. Then I went down to the potter's house, and, behold, he wrought a work on the wheels. And the vessel that he made of clay was marred in the hand of the potter: so he made it again another vessel, as seemed good to the potter to make it. Then the word of the LORD came to me, saying, O house of Israel, cannot I do with you as this potter? saith the LORD. Behold, as the clay is in the potter's hand, so are ye in mine hand, O house of Israel.

Man is as clay in the hands of the Potter. That is a theme that the book of Job brings forth again and again:

Job 4:19 How much less in them that dwell in houses of clay, whose foundation is in the dust, which are crushed before the moth?

Job 10:9 Remember, I beseech thee, that thou hast made me as the clay; and wilt thou bring me into dust again?

Job 13:12 Your remembrances are like unto ashes, your bodies to bodies of clay.

Job 33:6 Behold, I am according to thy wish in God's stead: I also am formed out of the clay.

Man formed out of dust, out of clay - an earthen vessel in the hands of the Potter - in the hands of God the Creator. How easy it is for the Potter to put the earthen vessel He is molding back on the wheels and reshape it into a form that will bring Him honour! If it is cracked or broken, He can fix it. If it is marred, He can remold it so that it is better than it was before. The Creator has all power to recreate His vessels as He chooses. From a vessel of dishonour to a vessel of honour in His hands. With a touch of the Master's hands (to quote a well-known hymn) that which was broken is made whole.

John 9:6-7 When he had thus spoken, he spat on the ground, and made clay of the spittle, and he anointed the eyes of the blind man with the clay, And said unto him, Go, wash in the pool of Siloam, (which is by interpretation, Sent.) He went his way therefore, and washed, and came seeing.

The Potter remolded His marred clay vessel, and fixed what was wrong with it. The Creator touched His creation of clay and made it whole again. Jesus, the Saviour, healed the blind man - with a bit of saliva and some dirt - clay in His hands. And with that little bit of clay, He repaired His earthen vessel in a manner that testified to who He was - God manifest in the flesh, the Potter Himself!

Notice the progression of this man's understanding of who it was who had healed him:

John 9:15 Then again the Pharisees also asked him how he had received his sight. He said unto them, He put clay upon mine eyes, and I washed, and do see.

John 9:17 They say unto the blind man again, What sayest thou of him, that he hath opened thine eyes? He said, He is a prophet.

John 9:24-25 Then again called they the man that was blind, and said unto him, Give God the praise: we know that this man is a sinner. He answered and said, Whether he be a sinner or no, I know not: one thing I know, that, whereas I was blind, now I see.

John 9:26-27 Then said they to him again, What did he to thee? how opened he thine eyes? He answered them, I have told you already, and ye did not hear: wherefore would ye hear it again? will ye also be his disciples?

John 9:30-34 The man answered and said unto them, Why herein is a marvellous thing, that ye know not from whence he is, and yet he hath opened mine eyes. Now we know that God heareth not sinners: but if any man be a worshipper of God, and doeth his will, him he heareth. Since the world began was it not heard that any man opened the eyes of one that was born blind. If this man were not of God, he could do nothing. They answered and said unto him, Thou wast altogether born in sins, and dost thou teach us? And they cast him out.

John 9:35-38 Jesus heard that they had cast him out; and when he had found him, he said unto him, Dost thou believe on the Son of God? He answered and said, Who is he, Lord, that I might believe on him? And Jesus said unto him, Thou hast both seen him, and it is he that talketh with thee. And he said, Lord, I believe. And he worshipped him.

First the Potter healed the blind man physically, then He healed him spiritually. First Jesus healed this man's physical blindness, then He healed his spiritual blindness. When the man who was born blind, but who now saw, when he realized who it was who had healed him, he placed his faith in the Son of God.

The Potter, the Creator who made every one of us, has the power to remake us for His glory. Jesus has the power to take every blind man and give him sight - take every hellbound sinner and open their eyes to understand the truth of the Gospel. He can take every marred vessel and use it for His glory - He can take a vessel of dishonour and make it into a vessel of honour, through faith in Him and His finished work on the cross of Calvary. Then the Lord is glorified by the lives of those earthen vessels that were once marred but now are miraculously recreated; He is magnified by the testimonies of those He has healed; and He is worshipped by those whose lives He touches and transforms!

Are you an earthen vessel that Jesus has touched and changed? If not, you can be. The Potter who created you also has the power to recreate you - He can change your sinful, sin-filled vessel of wrath into a vessel of mercy that will honour and glorify Him (see Romans 9:22-23). Will you turn to Him and let Him remake you according to His perfect plan?

If you will turn from your sin and receive the Heavenly Potter, the Lord Jesus Christ, as your Saviour, then He can transform you into a vessel unto honour and use you for His glory. Though you are an only earthen vessel, a weak vessel made of clay, you can be sanctified (set apart for the Lord), and meet for the Master's use, and prepared unto every good work, as the power of God works in your life and through you.

2 Corinthians 4:7 But we have this treasure in earthen vessels, that the excellency of the power may be of God, and not of us.

June 6th/06
Jerry Bouey

On Friday, June 9th, I had an opportunity to preach my study Earthen Vessels from John 9. God sure does have a sense of humour!! The power went out just before I got up to preach. A darkened room where no one could see, except for the light behind me, really got the message of the healing of the blind man across!

Friday, June 02, 2006

A Picture In Genesis Five

I have been meditating a bit on various passages in the book of Genesis, and, Lord willing, might comment on some of those things - but I wanted to post the following study as well.

The following is a neat devotional study based on the names of those in the line of Christ from Genesis five. This idea is not unique to me, but this study is what I have put together, from various resources I had on hand (plus, wisdom from God).

What The Genealogy In Genesis Five Pictures

Genesis 5:1-2 This is the book of the generations of Adam. In the day that God created man, in the likeness of God made he him; Male and female created he them; and blessed them, and called their name Adam, in the day when they were created.

The Names In This Chapter

There are eleven names in this chapter in the line of Christ, from Adam unto Shem. Here are their names and basic definitions/explanations, then I will attempt to sum up what they picture:

1. Adam - Man/Mankind (meaning earth or red earth, signifying man being created from the dust of the earth)

2. Seth - Appointed or Substituted (Adam's "son in his own likeness" - verse 3)

3. Enos - Mortal (ie. "destined to die," from Webster's 1828 Dictionary)

4. Cainan - Possessor or Purchaser (may also include the idea of Redeemer, one who purchases back)

5. Mahalaleel - Praise God or God Be Praised

6. Jared - He Descends or Coming Down

7. Enoch - Dedication ("the seventh from Adam" who "walked with God" - verses 22 and 24 - and "he had this testimony, that he pleased God" by faith - see Jude 1:14; Hebrews 11:5; Amos 3:3)

8. Methuselah - When He Dies, Then Comes Judgment or He Dieth And Judgment Sent Forth (from Jamieson, Fausset, and Brown: "This name signifies, 'He dieth, and the sending forth.'")
- The literal fulfillment of his name was in Methuselah's death just prior to or at the time of the sending forth of the flood - he died and the judgment of God came.

9. Lamech - Conqueror

10. Noah - Rest

Genesis 5:29 And he called his name Noah, saying, This same shall comfort us concerning our work and toil of our hands, because of the ground which the LORD hath cursed.

"The allusion is, undoubtedly, to the penal consequences of the fall in earthly toils and sufferings, and to the hope of a Deliverer, excited by the promise made to Eve. That this expectation was founded on a divine communication we infer from the importance attached to it and the confidence of its expression." - from Jamieson, Fausset, and Brown.

Matthew Henry observes, "All the patriarchs here, except Noah, were born before Adam died..." - yet Noah did not come until after the death of Adam... This too was part of the picture that God was presenting here.

11. Shem - Name

What These Names Picture

From the meaning of the names and the order they are given, I offer this following interpretation of what they picture:

A. To Man (ie. mankind) it is Appointed To Die.
Or - As it is appointed unto men... to die - as Hebrews 9:27 states.
- but there is a Substitute, made in the likeness of man, who was destined to die... (See Romans 8:3)

B. The Possessor (or Purchaser), Praise God, is Coming Down. God Be Praised, The Redeemer Descends (to earth).

Webster's 1828 Dictionary gives the following definitions (in part):

Redeem: "In commerce, to purchase or pay the value in specie, of any promissory note, bill or other evidence of debt, given by the state, by a company or corporation, or by an individual... In theology, to rescue and deliver from the bondage of sin and the penalties of God's violated law, by obedience and suffering in the place of the sinner, or by doing and suffering that which is accepted in lieu of the sinner's obedience."

Redemption: "In theology, the purchase of God's favor by the death and sufferings of Christ; the ransom or deliverance of sinners from the bondage of sin and the penalties of God's violated law by the atonement of Christ."

Jesus, the Creator and Possessor of Heaven and earth (Genesis 14:19), came down to earth to be our Redeemer. He become one of us, made in the likeness of man (but without sin - Hebrews 4:15), in order that He may be our Sinless Subsitute.

C. He lived a life of Dedication - He walked with God and was well-pleasing to Him.

Hebrews 10:7 Then said I, Lo, I come (in the volume of the book it is written of me,) to do thy will, O God.

Matthew 3:17 And lo a voice from heaven, saying, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.

Hebrews 11:6 But without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him.

Jesus, the Son of God - God manifest in the flesh - the Son of Man - the Perfect Man ("the seventh from Adam" - seven in the Bible indicates perfection, completion) completely fulfilled the requirements of the law (which sinful man could never do), thereby pleasing His Heavenly Father. It is only when we are in Christ (through faith in His finished work of Redemption and receiving of this Saviour), and walking in faith with Him that the Lord is well-pleased with us.

D. When He Dies, Then Comes Judgment.
- As Hebrews 9:27 states, And as it is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment.
He Dieth And Judgment Sent Forth.
- The fulfillment of what this pictured is seen in Jesus' death on the cross for our sins; He bore our judgment - the judgment of God that we deserved - and literally shed His blood and died in our place as our Substitute. While He was dying (dieth - present tense) on the cross, He bore man's judgment.

E. The Conqueror brings Rest, through His Name.
Through Jesus' death, burial, and literal physical resurrection after three days and three nights in the grave, He became the Conqueror over death and Hell (see Revelation 1:18). He brings Rest through His Name.

Acts 4:12 Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved.

Matthew 11:28 Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.

Romans 10:13 For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.

1 John 5:13 These things have I written unto you that believe on the name of the Son of God; that ye may know that ye have eternal life, and that ye may believe on the name of the Son of God.

The Rest to Man could not come until after the Appointed Death of the Redeemer (Purchaser), the Son of Man. Praise God, Jesus Christ Descended to earth and was made in Man's likeness, becoming Mortal so that He could die for Man, Dying in his place as his Substitute, bearing the Judgment (and curse) of God for Man's sins. He was the perfect Sacrifice because of His sinless life and complete Dedication to fulfilling the will and law of God. As the only Conqueror over Death and Hell, He offers Rest to all those who will believe on His Name - the name of Jesus (ie. Saviour). This is spiritual Rest, Rest from the curse of our sins and from the dead works of our hands - through faith in the Saviour's finished work at Calvary. Praise Be to God, "It is Finished!" What a Comfort! What a Rest! What A Saviour!

February 11th/06
Jerry Bouey

For more studies in Genesis (with Genesis as the springboard):

Genesis