Taking the Epistle

A biblical journey through the epistles

Tag Archives: Saul

TTE Advent Calendar Day Eight – December 8th

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TTE Advent Calendar Day 8 – December 8th

Thank you for reading our eighth installment of our advent series, please check out our advent page for more articles in this series.

In the last few days we have looked at the genealogy of the Messiah, we have narrowed it down from a woman, to a virgin, to being born in Bethlehem, to being from Abraham, Isaac,  Jacob and also from the tribe of Judah. Today we look at the promise that he would come from the lineage of King David.

2 Samuel 7:11 (ESV) And I will appoint a place for my people Israel and will plant them, so that they may dwell in their own place and be disturbed no more. And violent men shall afflict them no more, as formerly, 11 from the time that I appointed judges over my people Israel. And I will give you rest from all your enemies. Moreover, the LORD declares to you that the LORD will make you a house. 12 When your days are fulfilled and you lie down with your fathers, I will raise up your offspring after you, who shall come from your body, and I will establish his kingdom. 13 He shall build a house for my name, and I will establish the throne of his kingdom forever.

This promise to David that the LORD would raise up an offspring after him had both near prophetic and further prophetic implications. The line of Saul was gone as God had allowed David and his family to reign. (You have to remember it was the people of Israel who wanted a king against Gods advice and Saul was chosen as the first king)

God had committed to bless Israel and seek their best interests at heart, God knew that Israel would not always be faithful and I am sure had made provision for this. God did remove Israel from their place due to unbelief and David’s line due to their sins; we read this in the Old Testament in the book of Isaiah.
We read in verse 13 that David’s offspring would build Gods house, David was a man of war, a king that fought mightily for God, God chose Solomon, not because he was perfect but he used Solomon to build the temple. How much of a blessing is it for David to know that his line will build God a magnificent house.

The further implications speak of the messiah, that he would come from the line of David and that his throne will be established forever. This tells us that it will not be a king with a finite amount of years on this earth. We read this further in the book of Jeremiah chapter twenty three.

Jeremiah 23:5 (ESV) “Behold, the days are coming, declares the LORD, when I will raise up for David a righteous Branch, and he shall reign as king and deal wisely, and shall execute justice and righteousness in the land. 6 In his days Judah will be saved, and Israel will dwell securely. And this is the name by which he will be called: ‘The LORD is our righteousness.’

Who could be more “righteous” than the messiah, kings are flawed. Saul sinned, David sinned, Solomon sinned… Need I go on?

Here is where we lose our friends at the Jehovah’s Witness halls. I say this as this verse speaks about Jesus in the same terms as being one with the father. In the context we look and acknowledge that it is speaking of that messiah.

The founder of Calvary Chapel Chuck Smith talks of this in his C2000 bible commentary series when he says:

“Who is that righteous Branch that God shall raise up from David? Who is that One who is coming and will reign in righteousness over the earth? None other than Jehovah Shua who will then be called Jehovah Tsidkenu. Jehovah Shua is another name for Jesus, Yashua.”

Really says it much more eloquently than I ever could. The saving of Judah is a redemption, a future restoration if you will. John 3:16 tells us that “God so loved the world…” and we can be part of that redemption to if we believe and come to a living faith in the messiah, Jesus Christ.

This is the only Government I trust in, a non-corrupt, justice driven fair society run by the one who is truth with no phony election promises, sign me up!

Forever Government?

Let’s look at the book of Isaiah for confirmation of the longevity of this Government.

Isaiah 9:7 (ESV) Of the increase of his government and of peace there will be no end, on the throne of David and over his kingdom, to establish it and to uphold it with justice and with righteousness from this time forth and forevermore. The zeal of the LORD of hosts will do this.

We read again, on the “throne of David” we read the two standards of his reign will be…

1) Justice
2) Righteousness

For the true followers of Christ this will be wonderful, it will be a wonderful kingdom ruled by the King of Kings and Lord of Lords. Can you imagine being ruled by the “servant King”? a king that is not corrupt and gives far more than he could ever receive in return. A king that is willing to suffer the worst humiliation and cruelest death to allow you to be with him forever.

Jesus will bring peace because there will be a final battle, we will be called to a heavenly army and we read in the book of Revelation that he will wipe out the enemy himself. There will be no border invasions or need for a non-partisan foreign policy. He will reign and reign forevermore.

Basically, imagine all that is wrong with man-made power, flip it on its head and then you get close to what Jesus throne will be like.

How do we know this is Jesus?

We read the following in the book of Luke chapter one…

Luke 1:26 (ESV) In the sixth month the angel Gabriel was sent from God to a city of Galilee named Nazareth, 27 to a virgin betrothed to a man whose name was Joseph, of the house of David. And the virgin’s name was Mary. 28 And he came to her and said, “Greetings, O favored one, the Lord is with you!” 29 But she was greatly troubled at the saying, and tried to discern what sort of greeting this might be. 30 And the angel said to her, “Do not be afraid, Mary, for you have found favor with God. 31 And behold, you will conceive in your womb and bear a son, and you shall call his name Jesus. 32 He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High. And the Lord God will give to him the throne of his father David, 33 and he will reign over the house of Jacob forever, and of his kingdom there will be no end.”

The physician Luke talks about what familial history the messiah will have, he will be regarded as a “son of David” and will rule over the “house of Jacob” forever. he will have no beginning and no end.

Jesus is the Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end. We read in Revelation 22 the following…

Revelation 22:13 (ESV) I am the Alpha and the Omega, the first and the last, the beginning and the end.”

I think we can safely say that Jesus is the one spoken about in these texts, the one that has no beginning and no end. The one who will reign forever, He is named in teh text in Luke as Jesus of Nazareth (called the Christ) and we have further confirmation in Paul’s letter to the Romans.

Romans 1:1 (ESV) 1 Paul, a servant of Christ Jesus, called to be an apostle, set apart for the gospel of God, 2 which he promised beforehand through his prophets in the holy Scriptures, 3 concerning his Son, who was descended from David according to the flesh 4 and was declared to be the Son of God in power according to the Spirit of holiness by his resurrection from the dead, Jesus Christ our Lord

Paul introduces himself as an apostle, who was set apart on the road to Damascus (Acts 9) when he was literally “blinded by the light” Paul gives a genealogy list of who Jesus was, confirmed that the verses we looked at earlier in this article were promised by the prophets in the scriptures. (At this point they only had the Old Testament)

He also confirms WHO Jesus was he was the following:

1) Descended from David
2) A man who took on flesh
3) Son of God
4) Resurrected from the dead
5) Our Lord

He is this and much more, Jesus is the only way to heaven. In Acts chapter sixteen verse thirty one we read of a man who was tried to the point of suicide. He was a Philippian jailer who was charged with guarding the apostle Paul. He fell asleep and was awoken with an earthquake, he wakes up and see’s that all of the cell doors are wide open. He is shamed and decides to take his life, as he lifts his sword Paul alerts him that he stayed behind.

He then asks “what must I do to be saved?” knowing they were indeed telling the truth and were sent by God. And they said, “Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved, you and your household.” If you have not done so, you have that choice today, if you have been sliding backwards – Repent! God loves you and will welcome your obedience with open arms.

These are only a small handful of scriptures that point to a messiah coming from the line of David, I chose only the relevant ones in order to keep the article readable and at a length that someone investigating the claims of who Jesus was could get a concise article. Should you have any questions then please contact me and I would love to share further.

Can you tell that I desire to have you join me in heaven?

God bless you one and all, I thank you for reading this article. Please share, comment or like below as the LORD leads you too.
TGBTG
TTE

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No other gospel

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No other Gospel

Galatians 1:6 (ESV) I am astonished that you are so quickly deserting him who called you in the grace of Christ and are turning to a different gospel–7 not that there is another one, but there are some who trouble you and want to distort the gospel of Christ. 8 But even if we or an angel from heaven should preach to you a gospel contrary to the one we preached to you, let him be accursed. 9 As we have said before, so now I say again: If anyone is preaching to you a gospel contrary to the one you received, let him be accursed. 10 For am I now seeking the approval of man, or of God? Or am I trying to please man? If I were still trying to please man, I would not be a servant of Christ.

Oh Foolish Galatians!

When people think of the Galatian church the first thing that people think of is the verse “Oh foolish Galatians” it is easy to think that as this letter to this church is very heavy on teaching and also very loving. Paul exhorts the church; he corrects and gives great instruction that is still applicable some 2000 years later.

The reason this is so prevalent today is that Paul marvels/is astonished (depends on the version of the Bible you read) that the Galatians have fallen into theology that is not correct. This is not a minor theological contention such as whether we sprinkle or fully immerse in baptism, whether we have one cup or many cups at communion or whether we wear suits or come as you are to church. They are turning away from the basic beliefs and tenets on the Christian faith, the building blocks of what makes them Christian.

They were embracing heresy based on confusion. Like so many of todays cults, they were trying to do “Jesus plus” what I mean was that Jesus was not enough, they had to do Jesus plus the law, Jesus plus something else, like the blood on the cross was not enough to atone for the sins of the world.

Works are good

Don’t get me wrong, as a guy who is very point by point, line by line, precept upon precept in my Bible studies, I find it beneficial to have certain works listed as good to do, but they should not be kept in the same line or same vein as what is required to be saved. Many of the things that we contend with each other these days are not Salvation issues, many are not even heretical, many are based on theological stances that attempt to help, but sometimes cause frustration.

Traditionally, (and my wife Chelsea would be the first to confirm this) I have been “works orientated” where I try to “tick the boxes” and try to (in Gods will and his power) live in a way that would befitting the title Christian. This is good, if you are a flaky person and need structure in your life then this is a good way to get some structure and have some way to grow as a Christian.

You have to be careful though, we have a tendency as humans to elevate the structure that we have as high as the reason we are doing this in the first place. Please do not allow the ritual to become the main thing and also by the same token do not worship the ritual, this leads to resentment of your mind on when you think of all the other stuff you could be doing with your time and then it leads to you dragging your feet and “going through the motions” with minimum effort.

God knows this, God knows your heart, he knows who has their heart in it and who does not.

If I don’t feel like it should I not worship God?

In the words of the Apostle Paul, God forbid. I read a really cool graphic on Facebook yesterday that read “There are two times to worship God, 1) When you feel like it 2) When you don’t.

I think this is an awesome reminder that worshipping God should be as natural as eating or drinking water, we were created to do so and if we allow our emotions to drive how we feel about God, it stands to reason that when things go badly, we will not be in a mood to worship God.

Paradoxically, when some people are in their deepest hole and when they have exhausted all other alternatives, that is when they find God. Those of whom are literally at the bottom of their “pit of despair”.

What if the hosts of heaven appear to me?

Paul states quite clearly, “if he or even an angel preaches any other gospel” and the instructions to go with that. This even happens today; I am sure you will remember about 6 years ago we had a guy called Todd Bentley who had his “Lakeland revival” in Florida. Part of this guy’s testimony was he was visited by an Angel called “Emma” who gave “new revelation” and advised that he was to do a spiritual outpouring and declare revival in the Florida area and beyond.

I am all for revival, however this testimony sounds like it is in contradiction to what is stated in Galatians. It is similar to the testimony by the founder of the LDS (Mormon) Church called Joseph Smith Junior, he was visited by an angel called “Moroni” and given golden tablets (that disappeared as soon as he translated them) in an ancient and forgotten language that he was given supernatural powers to translate into what is now called the “Book of Mormon”.

So what is the problem?

We are told that if they give a gospel contrary to the one of Jesus Christ, what Paul calls “no gospel at all” he will be “eternally condemned” If you want a picture of what that looks like, have a quick read of Revelation 20:7-10, doesn’t look like fun huh?

Trying to please men

Paul finishes by stating that what he states will not be popular among men and that if he had desired to be popular with men he would have stayed as Saul, the Jewish zealot who was a career persecutor and very popular hatchet man of the Jewish faith. Instead he had a zealous heart for what God wanted in his life, so when he was face to face with Christ (not angels as you notice) he followed what God wanted with scant regard for his own life!

LORD MAKE ME LIKE THAT PLEASE!

I hope and pray this was a blessing and please share this article and leave any comments as the LORD leads
TGBTG
TTE