Archive for the Category ◊ Old Testament ◊

18 Mar 2018 Judges (Program #2)

Judges (Program #2) – The Miserable History of Israel’s Forsaking God (1)

In the history of the children of Israel God had manifested Himself to Israel in many aspects.  He fought for them as a warrior against Pharaoh and his armies, becoming their protector when they were still in Egypt. Then He supplied them with water and food in the wilderness as the source of all their living for more than 40 years. In addition He cared for them not just as a father but more so as their king.  Eventually He unveiled to them His deepest longing and that was to be a husband to them and for them to be a bride, a pure and chaste wife to Him.  But again and again Israel turned away from Him as their husband and as their king. At least 4 times, in the book of Judges we see the same words, “In those days, there were no kings in Israel, every man did what was right in his own eyes.”  How much these words must had offended Jehovah, Who had revealed Himself so faithfully to Israel again and again. But His love is greater than the weaknesses of His people, so He appeared to them again, not as a king not even as their husband but as a servant, a slave to minister to them in their poor condition and lowest state.

17 Mar 2018 Judges (Program #1)

Judges (Program #1) – An Introductory Word

The first chapter of the book of Judges records the marvelous story of Judah and Caleb fighting against the Canaanites after the death of Joshua. Jehovah displayed again that He was with Israel and that they can trust Him to fight with and for them against their enemy. But just as an unfaithful wife forsake her husband thereby damaging their marriage Israel eventually forsook Jehovah.

Listen to Judges 2 : 11-13  “And the children of Israel did what was evil in the sight of Jehovah and served the Baals. And they forsook Jehovah, the God of their fathers, who brought them out from the land of Egypt; and they followed after other gods from among the gods of the peoples who surrounded them; and they worshipped them and provoked Jehovah to anger. And they forsook Jehovah and served Baal and the Ashtaroth. Then the anger of Jehovah burned against Israel, and He delivered them into the hands of plunderers; and they plundered them. And He sold them into the hand of their enemies around them, and they were no longer able to stand before their enemies.”

From this point on the book of Judges becomes an ugly history a failure and humiliation for Israel as she turned from the purity and enjoyment of her days as a bride to Jehovah, becoming a harlot in His eyes.

16 Mar 2018 Joshua (Program #14)

Joshua (Program #14) – Three Particular Matters Concerning the Allotment of the Land and the Departure of Joshua

The two concluding chapters of the book of Joshua concern his departure and his deep burden to charge the children of Israel not to forsake Jehovah as they were endeavoring to possess the land of Canaan. If they did he warned the ungodly nations that were in the land will become a snare to them. What a fitting conclusion coupled with an equally fitting warning. A warning that is still be heeded by God’s people today.  We will consider the final chapters of Joshua on our life study today and several meaningful points in our fellowship as we look back over this book.

15 Mar 2018 Joshua (Program #13)

Joshua (Program #13) – Ten Aspects of Christ

In the book of Mathew, one of the early names given to the Lord Jesus was Emmanuel, which means God with us. In Isiah chapter 8 Canaan the good land is called the land of Emmanuel, clearly identify the good land as a type of Christ. Canaan is a land that is rich in its’ variety. Listen to the wonderful details given to us in Deuteronomy 8 “For Jehovah your God is bringing you to a good land, a land of waterbrooks, of springs and of fountains, flowing forth in valleys and in mountains; A land of wheat and barley and vines and fig trees and pomegranates; a land of olive trees with oil and of honey; A land in which you will eat bread without scarcity; you will not lack anything in it; a land whose stones are iron, and from whose mountains you can mine copper. And you shall eat and be satisfied, and you shall bless Jehovah your God for the good land which He has given you.”

Actually it takes all the rich details in the Old Testament books like Deuteronomy and Joshua to depict all of the riches of the all-inclusive Christ.  Today as we look at 10 different aspects of Christ in the book of Joshua.

14 Mar 2018 Joshua (Program #12)

Joshua (Program #12) – The Saving of Gibeon

One of the most interesting aspects of the relationship between husbands and wives is how easily and freely the wife can agreed to do something often involving money without checking first with her husband. The husbands also make the same mistake with unfortunate frequency and result is usually the same. A cooling trend seems to over take the relationship for a period of time and the sweetness at least for a season is gone .

God’s relationship to Israel in the Old Testament was also as a husband and the Israel was as His wife. Listen to Israel Jeremiah chapter 2, “Thus says Jehovah: I remember concerning you the kindness of your youth, The love of your bridal days, When you followed after Me in the wilderness.”  So what happened in this marriage when the wife acted on her own? Predictably the result was always a suffering for Israel. Such a case is recorded in Joshua 9, the story of the Gibeonites.

Today’s message touches the very essence of the divine romance; a favorite subject of the life study of the Bible and also a topic that Witness Lee frequently came to in his ministry.

13 Mar 2018 Joshua (Program #11)

Joshua (Program #11) – The Destruction of All the Nations

The last chapter in the book of Ephesians gives us the clear speaking in all of the New Testament regarding spiritual warfare. Listen to a few verses from chapter 6,  “Finally, be empowered in the Lord and in the might of His strength. Put on the whole armor of God that you may be able to stand against the stratagems of the devil, For our wrestling is not against blood and flesh but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the world-rulers of this darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenlies. Therefore take up the whole armor of God that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand.”

Throughout the ages these verses have aspired powerful sermons, stirring hymns, indeed of incredible faith and courage by the saints. But an enlighten study of the Old Testament provides us with even more of the details of how the forces of darkness are raged against God’s people, to frustrate and limit their pursuit and enjoyment of Christ. Among these portions are the middle chapters in the book of Joshua.  We will considered the warfare of the children of Israel and how their experience can be very meaningful in understanding much of what we go through in our Christian life.

12 Mar 2018 Joshua (Program #10)

Joshua (Program #10) – The Allotment of the Land (2)

When the children of Israel entered the good land, the land was apportioned to them according to their tribes. Each tribe received a different piece, some larger than others yet each one according to their condition and situation.

Bible interpreters long agrees that the good land is a type of Christ and Israel certainly typifies us, the Church.   So how is it that the Christ you receive may be in a sense bigger, more extensive than the one I have?   Well, it seems to be a paradox particularly in the light of the scripture clearly tells us in Hebrews 13:8 “Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today, yes, even forever.”  Well, we will see today that the Christ we experience matches our situation, our condition and our capacity.

11 Mar 2018 Joshua (Program #9)

Joshua (Program #9) – The Allotment of the Land (1)

We all know the story of Jacob, of course he had 12 sons, each one very different. These 12 sons then became the 12 tribes of the nation of Israel and the good land of Canaan was eventually apportioned to these tribes, the descendants of Jacob’s 12 sons.

The account of how these parcels were passed on to the various tribes of Israel may seems to us to be a meaningless bit of history as God’s New Testament people, yet it is recorded in the book of Joshua and as we will see today it helps to convey a very meaningful and very experiential aspect of our own enjoyment of Christ.

10 Mar 2018 Joshua (Program #8)

Joshua (Program #8) – The Destruction of Ai

After the wonderful victory at Jericho where the walls of the city crumbled before them upon their shout, the children of Israel then turned their attention to the city of Ai. No doubt full of expectation that this city would be delivered into their hands with equal ease.  But the record in the book of Joshua reveals that just the opposite happened. This time against a much less fierce opponent, the children of Israel were routed. Why such a change?  If the Lord had been with them to such an extent at Jericho what’s the reason that He abandon them now?

Well, the answers do not just tell us something about the history of Israel, they also tell us a lot of about our own history with God.

09 Mar 2018 Joshua (Program #7)

Joshua (Program #7) – The Destruction of Jericho

Remember the story of Jericho, for 6 days the children of Israel bearing the ark borne by the priests marched around the fortified city of Jericho.  No doubt as the inhabitants watched from the top of the city wall and sure wondered at the strange behavior of these occupying force.

And then on the 7th day after the priests blew the trumpet and the people shouted and they came about when the people heard the sound of the trumpets that “the people shouted with a great shout, and the wall fell down flat. And the people went up into the city, each straight ahead, and they captured the city.  And they utterly destroyed all that was in the city with the edge of the sword: both men and women, young and old, and oxen and sheep and donkeys. And Joshua said to the two men who had spied out the land, Go to the house of the harlot, and bring out from there the woman and all that belongs to her, as you swore to her. And the young men who had been spies went and brought out Rahab and her father and her mother and her brothers and all that belonged to her; all her family they brought out and set outside the camp of Israel. And they burned the city with fire and all that was in it;” more…