Posted by: biblestudyseattle | December 2, 2016

Reading the Law

Then Moses commanded them, saying, “At the end of every seven years, at the time of the year of remission of debts, at the Feast of Booths, when all Israel comes to appear before the Lord your God at the place which He will choose, you shall read this law in front of all Israel in their hearing.  Assemble the people, the men and the women and children and the alien who is in your town, so that they may hear and learn and fear the Lord your God, and be careful to observe all the words of this law.  Their children, who have not known, will hear and learn to fear the Lord your God, as long as you live on the land which you are about to cross the Jordan to possess.”  Deuteronomy 31:10-13

The Sabbath year in particular was a time that all the people must hear the law.

“Then it will come about that any who are left of all the nations that went against Jerusalem will go up from year to year to worship the King, the Lord of hosts, and to celebrate the Feast of Booths.”  Zechariah 14:16

No doubt, the people will hear the law read when they go to the Feast of Booth (Sukkot) in the future.  The law was even more read by the king:

Now it shall come about when he sits on the throne of his kingdom, he shall write for himself a copy of this law on a scroll in the presence of the Levitical priests.  It shall be with him and he shall read it all the days of his life, that he may learn to fear the Lord his God, by carefully observing all the words of this law and these statutes, that his heart may not be lifted up above his countrymen and that he may not turn aside from the commandment, to the right or the left, so that he and his sons may continue long in his kingdom in the midst of Israel.”  Deuteronomy 17:18-20

Posted by: biblestudyseattle | November 23, 2016

Too Few Firstborn?

So Moses numbered all the firstborn among the sons of Israel, just as the Lord had commanded him; and all the firstborn males by the number of names from a month old and upward, for their numbered men were 22,273.”  Numbers 3:42-43

“These are the numbered men of the sons of Israel by their fathers’ households; the total of the numbered men of the camps by their armies, 603,550.”  Numbers 2:32

How could there only be 22,273 firstborns among a population of 603,550?  The answer lies in the redemption price.

For the ransom of the 273 of the firstborn of the sons of Israel who are in excess beyond the Levites, you shall take five shekels apiece, per head;”  Numbers 3:46-47

“But if they are from a month even up to five years old, then your valuation shall be five shekels of silver for the male, and for the female your valuation shall be three shekels of silver.”  Leviticus 27:6

22,273 firstborn is counting only the boys from one month to five years old.

Posted by: biblestudyseattle | November 19, 2016

70 Elders go up

Then Moses went up with Aaron, Nadab and Abihu, and seventy of the elders of Israel, and they saw the God of Israel; and under His feet there appeared to be a pavement of sapphire, as clear as the sky itself.  Yet He did not stretch out His hand against the nobles of the sons of Israel; and they saw God, and they ate and drank.”  Exodus 24:9-11

This happened just after the first Feast of Weeks, the fiftieth day after leaving Egypt.  Is this picturing the completion of the church?  This scripture sounds something like:

“and before the throne there was something like a sea of glass, like crystal; and in the center and around the throne, four living creatures full of eyes in front and behind.”  Revelation 4:6

“And I saw something like a sea of glass mixed with fire, and those who had been victorious over the beast and his image and the number of his name, standing on the sea of glass, holding harps of God.”  Revelation 15:2

Interestingly, immediately after this, YHWH instructs the Israelites to construct the tabernacle to offer sacrifices.  This should be the pattern; after the bride is complete, the temple can be set up.

Christ Jesus Himself being the corner stone, in whom the whole building, being fitted together, is growing into a holy temple in the Lord, in whom you also are being built together into a dwelling of God in the Spirit.”  Ephesians 2:20-22

Posted by: biblestudyseattle | November 19, 2016

The World is Getting Better

Despite some appearances, the world is getting better.  Here are ten charts showing this: http://singularityhub.com/2016/06/27/why-the-world-is-better-than-you-think-in-10-powerful-charts/

It appears that the world is in the seven years of plenty with Joseph on the throne.  The truth is definitely rising, just as the 150 days(years) of rising water (Noah’s flood) would suggest.  Also, knowledge and travel have increased dramatically in the last 150 years.

“But as for you, Daniel, conceal these words and seal up the book until the end of time; many will go back and forth, and knowledge will increase.”  Daniel 12:4

This last prophecy is so obvious, that many conclude we must be right at the end.  We’ve still got a way to go.

Posted by: biblestudyseattle | November 11, 2016

Learning Accidentally

One of the great side effects of studying and researching is the corollary truths them emerge in the process.  One popped out at me from the last post.  That is that war deaths in the U. S. are at least double homicides over 240 years.  This show that decentralized evil at the family and friends level is less harmful than the centralized evil that comes from aggressive kings and presidents making war.   It’s easy to see where Satan concentrates his efforts.  The most spectacular example of this is yet to come:

“And I saw the beast and the kings of the earth and their armies assembled to make war against Him who sat on the horse and against His army.”  Revelation 19:19

When the thousand years are completed, Satan will be released from his prison, and will come out to deceive the nations which are in the four corners of the earth, Gog and Magog, to gather them together for the war; the number of them is like the sand of the seashore. And they came up on the broad plain of the earth and surrounded the camp of the saints and the beloved city, and fire came down from heaven and devoured them.  And the devil who deceived them was thrown into the lake of fire and [f]brimstone, where the beast and the false prophet are also; and they will be tormented day and night forever and ever.”  Revelation 20:7-10

Posted by: biblestudyseattle | November 7, 2016

Surprises

Every once in a while, you come across information that is startling and jarring.  Recently I was looking up issues between men and women, and I came across data that moms abuse their own kids more often than fathers.  I was shocked.  I’ve always assumed that most abuse came from fathers.  At least that’s how media and feminist organizations portray it.  But look at the data: (on page 71): http://www.acf.hhs.gov/sites/default/files/cb/cm2014.pdf#page=77      (page 48): http://archive.acf.hhs.gov/programs/cb/pubs/cm06/cm06.pdf   Several years data:  http://www.acf.hhs.gov/cb/research-data-technology/statistics-research/child-maltreatment

Here are aggregates from DHHS data:

 

The following is an analysis of data aggregated from the abuse and fatalities tables from the DHHS Child Maltreatment reports from 1999 and 2012.

Victims by Parental Status of Perpetrators, Child Maltreatment 1999–2012
Child Abuse and Neglect Child Fatalities
Mother Only 3,344,668 4,046
Mother and Other 516,230 1,438
Mother Total 3,860,898 5,484
Father Only 1,563,136 2,156
Father and Other 87,457 213
Father Total 1,650,593 2,369
Total number of incidents involving one parent alone, or with non-parent Other
5,511,491 7,853
Percentage of incidents involving one parent alone, or with non-parent Other
Mother Involved (but not father) 70.1% 69.8%
Father Involved (but not mother) 29.9% 30.2%

The excuse is that moms spend more time with their kids.  But am I more likely to murder my child just because I’m around them more?!  This got me thinking.  Especially about an obscure scripture that you probably won’t hear in church:  “‘When a woman gives birth and bears a male child, then she shall be unclean for seven days, as in the days of her menstruation she shall be unclean.  On the eighth day the flesh of his foreskin shall be circumcised.  Then she shall remain in the blood of her purification for thirty-three days; she shall not touch any consecrated thing, nor enter the sanctuary until the days of her purification are completed.  But if she bears a female child, then she shall be unclean for two weeks, as in her menstruation; and she shall remain in the blood of her purification for sixty-six days.”  Leviticus 12:2-5

Also, there is the phenomenon of voting.  Women consistently vote more liberal.  Regardless of the reason, this is theft through the ballot box.  Then there is murder.  At first thought, men appear to have this one.  Think of all those millions dead because of war.   Since 1775, the United States has had just under 3,000,000 war deaths.  Let’s attribute that to men: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States_military_casualties_of_war

Next we add homicides.  The U. S. has averaged between 2 and 10 per 100,000 murders per year, currently just under 16,000 per year.  But population was much smaller in the past.  This means total homicides since 1776 are no more than 1,300,000.  Let’s say most of these are due to men.  That’s 4,300,000 war deaths and homicides in 240 years.

But since 1973, the United States has had over 50,000,000 abortions!  (Thankfully the number is going down)  That’s mainly women’s ‘choice’.   Perhaps this is why Peter says:  “You husbands in the same way, live with your wives in an understanding way, as with someone weaker, since she is a woman; and show her honor as a fellow heir of the grace of life, so that your prayers will not be hindered.”  1 Peter 3:7   Peter was not only referring to physical strength, but mental and moral as well.

It is interesting that only males could be priests.  Priests are all about sacrifice.  We’re supposed to believe that with more and more women in positions of leadership, the world will be a kinder, more nurturing place.  But wait:  “O My people! Their oppressors are children, And women rule over them. O My people! Those who guide you lead you astray And confuse the direction of your paths.”  Isaiah 3:12

Posted by: biblestudyseattle | November 1, 2016

Rebekah’s motives

Isaac and Rebekah had twins Jacob and Esau.  The question comes up: since Jacob already bought Esau’s birthright, why did he deceive Isaac to get the blessing?

Now it came about, when Isaac was old and his eyes were too dim to see, that he called his older son Esau and said to him, “My son.” And he said to him, “Here I am.”  Isaac said, “Behold now, I am old and I do not know the day of my death.  Now then, please take your gear, your quiver and your bow, and go out to the field and hunt game for me; and prepare a savory dish for me such as I love, and bring it to me that I may eat, so that my soul may bless you before I die.”

Rebekah was listening while Isaac spoke to his son Esau. So when Esau went to the field to hunt for game to bring home, Rebekah said to her son Jacob, “Behold, I heard your father speak to your brother Esau, saying, ‘Bring me some game and prepare a savory dish for me, that I may eat, and bless you in the presence of the Lord before my death.’  Now therefore, my son, listen to me as I command you.  Go now to the flock and bring me two choice young goats from there, that I may prepare them as a savory dish for your father, such as he loves.  Then you shall bring it to your father, that he may eat, so that he may bless you before his death.”  Jacob answered his mother Rebekah, “Behold, Esau my brother is a hairy man and I am a smooth man.  Perhaps my father will feel me, then I will be as a deceiver in his sight, and I will bring upon myself a curse and not a blessing.”  But his mother said to him, “Your curse be on me, my son; only obey my voice, and go, get them for me.”  So he went and got them, and brought them to his mother; and his mother made savory food such as his father loved.  Then Rebekah took the best garments of Esau her elder son, which were with her in the house, and put them on Jacob her younger son. And she put the skins of the young goats on his hands and on the smooth part of his neck. She also gave the savory food and the bread, which she had made, to her son Jacob.”  Genesis 27:1-17

Then Esau comes in:

Isaac his father said to him, “Who are you?” And he said, “I am your son, your firstborn, Esau.”  Then Isaac trembled violently, and said, “Who was he then that hunted game and brought it to me, so that I ate of all of it before you came, and blessed him? Yes, and he shall be blessed.”  When Esau heard the words of his father, he cried out with an exceedingly great and bitter cry, and said to his father, “Bless me, even me also, O my father!”  And he said, “Your brother came deceitfully and has taken away your blessing.” Then he said, “Is he not rightly named Jacob, for he has supplanted me these two times? He took away my birthright, and behold, now he has taken away my blessing.”  Genesis 27:23-36

The answer about the deception probably comes later:

“Rebekah said to Isaac, “I am tired of living because of the daughters of Heth; if Jacob takes a wife from the daughters of Heth, like these, from the daughters of the land, what good will my life be to me?”  Genesis 27:46

The deception was Rebekah’s idea.  She probably saw it as a way to get rid of Esau’s Canaanite wives.  What a merry band of schemers!

Posted by: biblestudyseattle | October 27, 2016

Isaac & Ishmael

Ishmael was born out of desperation.  Sarai had passed menopause, and YHWH didn’t seem to be moving on his promise to give Abram an heir.  When they took matters into their own hands, things turned out badly.  24 years after the promise, YHWH spoke again to Abram reiterating his promise of an heir.  He also made the covenant of circumcision:  “Then Abraham took Ishmael his son, and all the servants who were born in his house and all who were bought with his money, every male among the men of Abraham’s household, and circumcised the flesh of their foreskin in the very same day, as God had said to him. Now Abraham was ninety-nine years old when he was circumcised in the flesh of his foreskin.”  Genesis 17:23-24

This did not happen before Ishmael was born.  Paul explains that these two represent two different covenants:  “For it is written that Abraham had two sons, one by the bondwoman and one by the free woman.  But the son by the bondwoman was born according to the flesh, and the son by the free woman through the promise.  This is allegorically speaking, for these women are two covenants: one proceeding from Mount Sinai bearing children [t]who are to be slaves; she is Hagar.  Now this Hagar is Mount Sinai in Arabia and corresponds to the present Jerusalem, for she is in slavery with her children.  But the Jerusalem above is free; she is our mother.  For it is written,

Rejoice, barren woman who does not bear;
Break forth and shout, you who are not in labor;
For more numerous are the children of the desolate
Than of the one who has a husband.”

And you brethren, like Isaac, are children of promise.  But as at that time he who was born according to the flesh persecuted him who was born according to the Spirit, so it is now also.  But what does the Scripture say?

Cast out the bondwoman and her son,
For the son of the bondwoman shall not be an heir with the son of the free woman.”

So then, brethren, we are not children of a bondwoman, but of the free woman.”  Galatians 4:22-31

Paul also quotes Isaiah 54 about who is the mother, but that is a different post.  Circumcision is detailed in the Torah of Moses:  “So circumcise [b]your heart, and stiffen your neck no longer.”  Deuteronomy 10:16  And,

The Lord your God will bring you into the land which your fathers possessed, and you shall possess it; and He will prosper you and multiply you more than your fathers.

“Moreover the Lord your God will circumcise your heart and the heart of your descendants, to love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul, so that you may live. The Lord your God will inflict all these curses on your enemies and on those who hate you, who persecuted you.”   Deuteronomy 30:5-7

Posted by: biblestudyseattle | October 24, 2016

Repentance before Forgiveness

In Christian circles it is common to ‘forgive’ someone their sins in absentia, or without repentance.  “But Jesus was saying, “Father, forgive them; for they do not know what they are doing.”  Luke 23:34

Jesus said this as they were crucifying him!  We must note that he says they knew not what they were doing.  This is important.  Jesus would not say that if he thought they knew what they were doing.  He also committed judgment to YHWH.  And yet the day will come, when they do understand what they did:

 “And in that day I will set about to destroy all the nations that come against Jerusalem.“I will pour out on the house of David and on the inhabitants of Jerusalem, the Spirit of grace and of supplication, so that they will look on Me whom they have pierced; and they will mourn for Him, as one mourns for an only son, and they will weep bitterly over Him like the bitter weeping over a firstborn.  In that day there will be great mourning in Jerusalem, like the mourning of Hadadrimmon in the plain of Megiddo.”  Zecheriah 12:9-11

The Me here probably represents YHWH, and the Him represents Jesus.  It’s important to note that the actual Jews that killed Jesus are resurrected and present in this scene.  Here they will realize the whole history and repent truly.  And YHWH will forgive them.  This is beautifully illustrated in the story of Joseph.  After the eleven brothers dealt treacherously with Joseph, Joseph deals harshly with the eleven in their distress.  He refuses to comfort or forgive them until they repent:  “When Judah and his brothers came to Joseph’s house, he was still there, and they fell to the ground before him.  Joseph said to them, “What is this deed that you have done? Do you not know that such a man as I can indeed practice divination?”  So Judah said, “What can we say to my lord? What can we speak? And how can we justify ourselves? God has found out the iniquity of your servants; behold, we are my lord’s slaves, both we and the one in whose [c]possession the cup has been found.”  Genesis 44:14-16

After this true repentance comes:  “Then Joseph could not control himself before all those who stood by him, and he cried, “Have everyone go out from me.” So there was no man with him when Joseph made himself known to his brothers.  He wept so loudly that the Egyptians heard it, and the household of Pharaoh heard of it.  Then Joseph said to his brothers, “I am Joseph! Is my father still alive?” But his brothers could not answer him, for they were dismayed at his presence.  Then Joseph said to his brothers, “Please come closer to me.” And they came closer. And he said, “I am your brother Joseph, whom you sold into Egypt.  Now do not be grieved or angry with yourselves, because you sold me here, for God sent me before you to preserve life.”  Genesis 45:1-5

Posted by: biblestudyseattle | October 24, 2016

Name vs Title

Can you imagine saying you’re going to meet Senior Software Specialist for coffee at Starbucks next Tuesday in order not to malign a friend’s name?  That’s the position of some Jews refusing to use YHWH’s name to not break the third commandment:

“You shall not take the name of the Lord your God in vain, for the Lord will not leave him unpunished who takes His name in vain.”  Exodus 20:7

Even if we substitute Senior Software Specialist for a friend’s personal name, we can still malign their name even though we are not using it.  YHWH accused Israel of this: “Therefore say to the house of Israel, ‘Thus says the Lord God, “It is not for your sake, O house of Israel, that I am about to act, but for My holy name, which you have profaned among the nations where you went.”  Ezekiel 36:22

Whether they directly profaned the NAME or not, their actions profaned the NAME.  This is the distinction between knowing the spirit & letter of the law and just the letter.

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