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Tag: Moses

Light of the World, Chapter Nine: The Promised Deliverer

Chapter nine: The Promised Deliverer

Because of his obedient faith in his creator God, Abraham received the promise that a great nation would come forth from the son of his old age. This might not seem as important to us in our time when many worry about the planet having to support too many people. It was different 4 thousand years ago. Having a family was even more important to Abraham, whose original name meant “exalted father.” Later the name given to him by God would be Abraham, or “father of a multitude.” In ancient days a person’s name often described him. Abraham’s very purpose in life was not simply to prosper in business, but to inherit the Promised Land, and to populate that land with his family. This family would then be God’s instrument through which all families of the world would be blessed!

Ironically, his family did not really flourish at first in the promised land. Many things would transpire before that time. Abraham’s grandson Joseph, was betrayed by the jealousy of his own brothers, and he became a slave in Egypt. In his integrity and faithfulness to God he endured much suffering and abuse, but was rewarded in the end. His God enabled him to interpret the dreams of Pharaoh and to lead Egypt through a great famine. Finally his brothers humbled themselves before him, and they were reconciled.

In this we see another parallel with Jesus, who while on the cross asked for forgiveness for his own people who in their jealousy rejected Him! The natural children of Abraham mostly have failed to recognize Him to this day, with only a minority believing in Him. However, we look forward in great anticipation with the apostle Paul who saw the day when their eyes would be open in great numbers! (Romans 11:25-29). Like Joseph and his brothers who wept and embraced one another, there will also come a time when the natural sons of Abraham will reconcile with the One who rescued them as well!

Zechariah 12:8-11:
8 “In that day the LORD will defend the inhabitants of Jerusalem, and the one who is feeble among them in that day will be like David, and the house of David will be like God, like the angel of the LORD before them. 9 “And it will come about in that day that I will set about to destroy all the nations that come against Jerusalem.

10 “And 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 first-born.

It appears that this mourning will not be limited to Israel, but to all nations, for we read in Revelations 1:7:

7 Behold, He is coming with the clouds, and every eye will see Him, even those who pierced Him; and all the tribes of the earth will mourn over Him. Even so. Amen.

What a great day that will be when all who have pierced Him with their words and actions of hatred, selfishness, pride and injustice finally grieve over their ways as He reveals Himself to them!

The Great I AM

This wonderful story of Joseph and his brothers had a happy ending. He brought His father and all that were with him to live in Egypt, where there was plenty of food which he had stored up during the seven plentiful years. The seventy families that were brought down with Jacob multiplied there greatly. However, after the death of Joseph another Pharaoh came to power. He feared that they might rise up against him, so he enslaved them and forced them to build great cities. In spite of this they multiplied even more! His next plan was to control their population growth by infanticide. The parents of Moses were wise and courageous enough to hide him and at the same time hopeful enough to risk sending him down the river to freedom. What would become of him? Would the God they trusted in watch over him and use him for something special?

Having been rescued by Pharaoh’s own daughter and raised in the palace, he could have been very content with his life. This situation might have been that easy for some, but not Moses. He saw how his people were being mistreated and he got involved. This led to his accidental killing of an Egyptian which resulted in his flight from Egypt. Then he again found a relatively good life as a shepherd. Could he at last find contentment? No. Like Joseph, Moses would be another example of Christ, the greatest of all deliverers, by leaving a place of comfort and ease for a place of suffering and struggle. This would lead to a greater purpose, the purpose of lifting others to a higher life! All of this prefigures our Savior Jesus Who left the riches of heaven to become the servant of all. (Philippians 2:5-11)

While in the wilderness, Moses would meet the Great I AM, The Eternal One, Who has no beginning or ending. Out of a bush on fire but not consumed by the flames, he received the call to go back to Egypt to deliver his people. God would give many great and powerful signs through Moses to demonstrate His superiority over the gods of Egypt and to liberate the children of Israel from slavery. Moses would be God’s spokesman throughout his lifetime and revealing in great detail how this great family was to become a civilized nation, and an example to the world.

So much could be said about the importance of Moses, but here I simply want to point out how his ministry fits into the eternal plan of God through Christ. It was Moses who was instructed by God to oversee the building of a place where God would meet with His people. The tabernacle in the wilderness was built to show how serious God was about renewing that relationship He had with Adam and Eve in the garden. In it He provided a place where they could express repentance for their sins and also receive His grace and be at peace with Him. His blessing would be demonstrated in the glory of the pillar of cloud by day and fire by night and the provisions made for their journey back to the Promised Land.

Sadly, as is often the case, many missed the point. Far too many worshipped outwardly but not from the heart, right up until the time of Jesus. Jesus pointed this out to many religious leaders of His day who thought they really understood Moses:

John 5:45-47:
45 “Do not think that I will accuse you before the Father; the one who accuses you is Moses, in whom you have set your hope. 46 “For if you believed Moses, you would believe Me; for he wrote of Me. 47 “But if you do not believe his writings, how will you believe My words?”

So how did Moses write of Jesus? The answer might be found in a concept described by the author of the letter to the Hebrews.

Hebrews 10:1-2:
10:1 For the Law, since it has only a shadow of the good things to come and not the very form of things, can never by the same sacrifices year by year, which they offer continually, make perfect those who draw near.

Paul also made a similar observation in Colossians 2:16-17:

16 Therefore let no one act as your judge in regard to food or drink or in respect to a festival or a new moon or a Sabbath day — 17 things which are a mere shadow of what is to come; but the substance belongs to Christ.

Around the time of the First Century, biblical scholars were looking into allegorical interpretations of the Scriptures. The New Testament apostles and teachers also began to see amazing parallels between the old and new covenants. Jesus Himself took special time to show that He was written about in the law of Moses, the writings of the prophets and in the poetry of the Psalms and the wisdom literature of the Hebrew canon. (Luke 24:44-45). When individuals become open to see how Jesus was concealed in the stories, the characters, and the rituals of the old testament, a rich and wonderful portrait of Christ becomes available to them. He reveals Himself by the Spirit to the humble of heart.

The law given by Moses, with it’s ethics, with it’s order, with it’s sacrificial system and it’s clear method of separating His people from the world — was a mere shadow of the good things to come in Christ! In depth studies of this marvelous, and mysterious body of literature have proven to encourage many to believe in God’s eternal purpose in Christ and His Church! Not only was He the Lamb of God that takes away the sin of the world, but also the Light of the world as seen by the candlestick in the tabernacle. Likewise the bread on the table in the tabernacle pointed to Christ who is the Bread of Life.

The entire tabernacle tells the story of how fallen humanity returns to intimacy with God through the work of Jesus on the Cross. Christ is the door of the tabernacle, He is the sacrifice on the brazen offer which represents my repentant heart. He is the sanctuary where we receive His Light from the candlestick, the sustenance from the Showbread, and we can offer up prayers and praise in the golden alter of incense. Finally, by His grace we can enter into the holiest place of all, where His presence, His word and His blood on the alter seal our relationship with God forever! (Hebrews 9:1-15, 10:19-22)

As Moses defeated the mighty Pharaoh and his false gods, Jesus brought down the lies of the devil by proving the love and goodness of God on our behalf, as well as His power over death. (Hebrews 2:14-15). Moses led his people out of bondage in Egypt and on their journey to Canaan. Christ snatches us from our old lives of sin and the corruption of this world. Even now He provides for us all we need on this wilderness journey while being surrounded by hostile forces.

Moses on Mount Sinai gave Israel the law written by the Finger of God, to prove to the world their identity as God’s chosen people. Jesus revealed the true intent of that law in His Sermon on the Mount to prove that by faith we can become citizens of heaven while still living on this earth!

Moses could have been speaking of Jesus when he made this statement:

Deuteronomy 18:15:
15 The LORD your God will raise up for you a prophet like me from among you, from your countrymen, you shall listen to him.

Peter and others declared that Moses was in fact foretelling the coming of Jesus even back then. (Acts 3:19-22, John 6:14)

Are you beginning to see how the many pieces of the puzzle begin to fit together in Jesus Christ? But here we are just beginning, there is so much more to come! Christ is not only delivering us from the effects of the fall, He is restoring us to the relationship we had with Him in paradise before the fall! Not only that, but something greater! We already bear the image of God in an earthly manner, but we are to also bear the image of God in a much deeper way. Even now, those who worship Him are being daily transformed!

In the third chapter of his second letter to the Corinthian church, Paul describes a situation where some biblical scholars had failed to see the portrait of Christ hidden in their scriptures, our Old Testament. Their minds and their hearts were blinded, as if separated from seeing Him by a veil. But — when any heart turns to the Lord, that veil is taken away! Of course we know that it can only be the Holy Spirit Who warms our hearts, convicts us of our sin and forgetfulness, and leads us to repentance.

2 Corinthians 3:13-18:
14 But their minds were hardened; for until this very day at the reading of the old covenant the same veil remains unlifted, because it is removed in Christ. 15 But to this day whenever Moses is read, a veil lies over their heart; 16 but whenever a man turns to the Lord, the veil is taken away. 17 Now the Lord is the Spirit; and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty. 18 But we all, with unveiled face beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory, just as from the Lord, the Spirit.

Did you get that? We can be transformed into the image of Christ, who is the express image of the invisible God! (2 Corinthians 4:4, Colossians 1:15, Hebrews 1:3).

Romans 8:28-30:
28 And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose. 29 For whom He foreknew, He also predestined to become conformed to the image of His Son, that He might be the first-born among many brethren; 30 and whom He predestined, these He also called; and whom He called, these He also justified; and whom He justified, these He also glorified.

Remember the original blessing in Genesis One? God had intended all along for humanity to bear His image, to rule the earth on His behalf and to fill the earth with His glory. Disobedience and sin disrupted that plan, but God could not fail in His purpose. The world was being prepared for the promised deliverer by God’s work through many beforehand. Glimpses of Him would be seen in Abraham, Joseph, Moses and others. In fact the entire created universe testifies of Him. (Romans 1:20).

Throughout the ages God has been working with us as a potter works with clay in his hands. Everything that has happened and is happening is leading to a great climax in which the knowledge of the glory of the Lord will cover the earth as the waters cover the sea! (Isaiah 11:9, Habakkuk 2:14) Creation itself will be delivered from the bondage of corruption and into the glorious liberty of the children of God! (Romans 8:20-21)

In all of this you and I have a part to play. We get to be incorporated into the the very Body of Christ, Who is the Seed, the descendant of Abraham through Whom all the families of the earth will be blessed! Where do I get this crazy idea? In the bible of course!

Romans 8:18-21:

18 I consider that our present sufferings are not worth comparing with the glory that will be revealed in us. 19 The creation waits in eager expectation for the sons of God to be revealed. 20 For the creation was subjected to frustration, not by its own choice, but by the will of the one who subjected it, in hope 21 that the creation itself will be liberated from its bondage to decay and brought into the glorious freedom of the children of God.

Once we begin to see the big picture, from a great panoramic view of the entire bible, the individual pieces of the puzzle begin to fit into place. Have you ever tried to work a picture puzzle without having the cover of the box that shows the end result? Sometimes we just see individual pieces in God’s plan without having a clue to the way they fit together. If you can bear with me, I believe we can show in this simple study how beautiful the bigger picture really is. More than that, I hope each of us can find what our part in God’s great plan might be, giving us a greater sense of purpose in this life!

Light Of The World, Chapter Eight, The Promised Sacrifice

Chapter 8: The Promised Sacrifice

In case someone might think that I am making things up as I go along, let’s look at another Old Testament story from Genesis. We believe that the New Testament cannot be fully understood without some understanding of the context in which events recorded there took place. The context was a nation that sprang forth from Abraham, whose faith gave him the privilege of being called the Friend of God.

Even before Abraham the Good News from God stated that the evil one who deceived the whole world would be defeated by one who would descend from Eve. (Genesis 3:14-15). Later Abraham set the pattern for all who would follow God by acting on his faith in God’s Word, His promises. His promise to Abraham and Sarah was not only for a son in their old age, but through that son his descendants that would number as many as the sands of the seashore and the stars of heaven that cannot even be counted! Not only that, but these descendants would bring forth one particular “seed” through which all the families of the earth would be blessed! (Galatians 3:8-9,16). This is part of that “Impossible Dream” that I wrote about in the last chapter. And yes, this is also part of the Gospel of Jesus Christ, the Gospel of the Kingdom to be announced 2,000 years later.

When Abraham set out with his wife to find the home God had planned for him, his faith was expressed. But after his son came into the world, his faith would be tested. In this test, we can look back and see another glimpse of what would come to be fulfilled in Jesus Christ.

In Abraham’s day there were no church services to attend, no preaching to listen to or hymns to sing. His primary act of worship was to leave his home and migrate to another land, a land that his descendants would later possess. His faith, his trust in His God was already shown to be real by the great risks he had taken so far. While so many were migrating to the fertile lands of Mesopotamia, this man and his family were leaving their security and journeying into the unknown. This theme of a quest, or a journey into unknown territory would appear again and again in both the old and new testaments, and in the entire history of the church of Jesus Christ.

When the promised son finally came to Abraham and Sarah, he would face his greatest test. Would his faith sustain him?

The God who led Abraham out from his home to become a tent dweller in Canaan and gave him the son that was promised, was now asking him to give that son up as a sacrifice on Mount Moriah. Abraham took his son and before they went up the mountain, he told his servants that both of them would later return. Did he really believe that, or did he mislead the servants? In the New Testament Abraham was seen as a model of great faith. Perhaps he still believed in God’s promise to make a great nation from Isaac. In order to fulfill it maybe he hoped God would raise him from the dead even after offering him. (Hebrews 11:17-19). In another place he made an even greater confession of faith that would not be fully understood for 2,000 years. When Isaac asked his father about the animal that they needed for the sacrifice, he gave us another one of those statements in the Old Testament concerning Jesus! He answered: “My son, God will provide himself a lamb for a burnt offering.” (Genesis 22:8).

The death of Isaac was not God’s plan all along, but a test of Abraham’s faith. In the story God intervened and did provide a ram that had his horns caught in a bush. He did provide an immediate sacrifice for Abraham but there is an even higher, deeper, prophetic meaning to his words. 2,000 years into the future God who through His great love for the world would offer His only son Jesus to atone for all of our sins. Through belief in Him we can now have everlasting life! (John 3:16, 1 John 2:1-2, 1 Timothy 2:1-6) Allow me to go even further out on a limb with this declaration. God did not only provide a sacrifice, but He provided Himself as a sacrifice! Is this a play on words or did God actually surrender Himself on the Cross for the sins of the whole world?

If you believe that there is only One God who is revealed and personified as the Father, The Son and The Holy Spirit, you might be able to see that He is so at one with Jesus that He suffered with the Incarnate Son, the one Who is fully Human and fully divine — the Great I AM! (John 8:58, 10:30, 14:8-11, 17:5).

So God was in Christ, reconciling the world unto Himself, not counting our trespasses against us! (2 Corinthians 5:17-21) This great cosmic and catastrophic event paved the way for the very promise which Abraham received from God, that his descendants would be impossible to count! Through Jesus the wall of separation between Jews and gentiles would be brought down and all of us can become a part of that great family! How? By faith and trust in His righteousness and not our own! (Ephesians 2:12-22). (6 minutes)

God does have a plan for the ages! Paul wrote about this in his letter to the Christians at Ephesis:

Ephesians 3:8-12:
8 Although I am less than the least of all God’s people, this grace was given me: to preach to the Gentiles the unsearchable riches of Christ, 9 and to make plain to everyone the administration of this mystery, which for ages past was kept hidden in God, who created all things. 10 His intent was that now, through the church, the manifold wisdom of God should be made known to the rulers and authorities in the heavenly realms, 11 according to his eternal purpose which he accomplished in Christ Jesus our Lord. 12 In him and through faith in him we may approach God with freedom and confidence.

God had been preparing the world for the coming of Jesus, the Messiah from the very beginning. Even Abraham had a glimpse of Him! (John 8:56) Later, when his descendants found themselves enslaved in Egypt, they had a preview of Jesus in their deliverer, Moses. Amidst all of the miracles and astonishing events that God performed through Moses, He also demonstrated the manner in which an innocent lamb would protect them from the curse of sin and death. Only those who sacrificed a flawless lamb, consumed its nourishment and applied its blood to their dwelling would be spared the plague of death that took the firstborn of all Egypt.

From that time on, Israel would look back on that day every year without realizing they were also looking ahead to the day when God would offer His son not only for their sins, but for the sins of the whole world. (1 John 2:2). Every sacrifice and offering they brought would remind them of their weaknesses and dependence upon God and point to the time when God would more fully take up residence in them to live His righteous and holy life in them! In Christ we are made one and complete in Him! He identified with us in our weaknesses so that we can identify with Him in His victory over sin and death!

2 Corinthians 5:21:
He made Him who knew no sin to be sin on our behalf, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him.

2 Corinthians 8:9:
For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though He was rich, yet for your sake He became poor, that you through His poverty might become rich.

All of this takes us back again to the original blessing in Genesis 1:26-28:

26 Then God said, “Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness; and let them rule over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the sky and over the cattle and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth.” 27 And God created man in His own image, in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them. 28 And God blessed them; and God said to them, “Be fruitful and multiply, and fill the earth, and subdue it; and rule over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the sky, and over every living thing that moves on the earth.”

God is still in the process of making mankind into His image. He is determined to fill the earth with His sons and daughters, in order that Jesus would become the firstborn in this great family of God! (Romans 8:28-29) Jesus died on the cross to deliver us from the curse, and also that God’s eternal purpose could be fulfilled in us! Then He sent His disciples out into the world with the Gospel, teaching all the nations His Kingdom principles of faith, hope and love. This was the time to be fruitful and to multiply in a greater and higher order!

While some would postpone this purpose until the afterlife, I find great inspiration in knowing that it can be fulfilled in space and time!

Titus 2:11-14:
11 For the grace of God has appeared, bringing salvation to all men, 12 instructing us to deny ungodliness and worldly desires and to live sensibly, righteously and godly in the present age, 13 looking for the blessed hope and the appearing of the glory of our great God and Savior, Christ Jesus; 14 who gave Himself for us, that He might redeem us from every lawless deed and purify for Himself a people for His own possession, zealous for good deeds.

So let us not diminish the great sacrifice of our Lord, the spotless Lamb of God. Let us wholeheartedly, as did our spiritual ancestors, anticipate the fullness of what God desires for His creation! Let us honor and cherish His great act of love for us that cannot fail to bring about His plan for His glory!

The Promise of the Kingdom Continued

First the Kingdom, Part 7: The Promise of the Kingdom Continued

The New Testament of the Bible begins with a gigantic emphasis on the Kingdom of God. 2,000 years later we are beginning to hear more about the Kingdom of God again, and that excites me. What also really excites me is learning that the ages of time leading up to the First Century were actually the preparation for what was to begin unfolding for the Early Church and is continuing to unfold today!

We are part of God’s great plan of the ages! I have suggested that an important part of that plan is for us to understand the promises God made to many Biblical characters from Adam and Eve, to Noah, to Abraham, Moses and many others.

The New Testament writer and apostle, Paul, made Jesus and His message of the Kingdom the center of his life. He had this to say concerning the Old Testament prophecies:

Acts 26:22-23:
Having therefore obtained help of God, I continue unto this day, witnessing both to small and great, saying none other things than those which the prophets and Moses did say should come:

That Christ should suffer, and that he should be the first that should rise from the dead, and should show light unto the people, and to the Gentiles.

In another places Paul explained even further how God’s promise to Abraham was relevant to the Good News of the Kingdom of God.

For instance, Galatians 3:8-9:
The Scripture, foreseeing that God would justify the Gentiles by faith, preached the gospel beforehand to Abraham, saying, “ALL THE NATIONS WILL BE BLESSED IN YOU.” So then those who are of faith are blessed with Abraham, the believer.

When we isolate the message of the New Testament from the Old we can miss the bigger picture. We can easily get wrapped up in our tiny part in God’s economy. Then we might miss the value that it represents when placed along side the other parts. It is like playing with the pieces of a picture puzzle and never attempting to fit them together. And if we do not understand the overall plan that began in the beginning, we are like people working a puzzle without the illustration on the puzzle box!

The children of Abraham did multiply greatly. By the fourth generation they settled in Egypt during a famine. Eventually there were millions of them but now they lived as slaves to Pharaoh. So God raised up Moses to be their leader and through demonstrations of supernatural power they were led out of Egypt and began their journey to the land promised to Abraham.

Moses delivered the people from bondage in Egypt, but he looked forward to a deliverer who would save them from themselves. He foresaw the next individual who would also demonstrate supernatural power and words of incomparable truth. Where Moses saved the people from slavery to men, Jesus would save them from their sins. (Deuteronomy 18:15, John 6:14, Acts 3:19-26, 7:37, Matthew 1:21).

Israel finally occupied the promised land and David eventually took the throne. Being also a spiritual man, he was given understanding of the Kingdom that would come. David wanted to build a house for God, a resting place for the Ark of the Covenant. The prophet Nathan agreed, but God visited Nathan with His Word on the matter. David would not build a house for God, but a house would be built.

1 Chronicles 17:11-15:
‘And it shall come about when your days are fulfilled that you must go to be with your fathers, that I will set up one of your descendants after you, who shall be of your sons; and I will establish his kingdom. He shall build for Me a house, and I will establish his throne forever.  I will be his father, and he shall be My son; and I will not take My lovingkindness away from him, as I took it from him who was before you. But I will settle him in My house and in My kingdom forever, and his throne shall be established forever.”‘ ”  According to all these words and according to all this vision, so Nathan spoke to David.

David’s son Solomon built the beautiful temple in Jerusalem, but his throne did not last forever. Hidden in this prophesy concerning Solomon is another glimpse of Christ and His Eternal Kingdom!

One of the most intriguing stories is that of the prophet Daniel and his interpretation of King Nebuchadnezzar’s dream. Daniel explained that God was revealing how four great kingdoms were described in the dream, symbolized in a great statue made of gold, silver, brass, and iron mixed with clay. we know them as Babylon, Medo-Persia, Greece under Alexander, and Rome. In the dream a rock was cut out of a mountain without hands, which struck the stature and destroyed it, to become a great mountain that filled the earth. (Daniel 2:31-45). Then Daniel declared that the mountain was the Kingdom of God!

Dan 2:44-45:
“In the days of those kings the God of heaven will set up a kingdom which will never be destroyed, and that kingdom will not be left for another people; it will crush and put an end to all these kingdoms, but it will itself endure forever. “Inasmuch as you saw that a stone was cut out of the mountain without hands and that it crushed the iron, the bronze, the clay, the silver and the gold, the great God has made known to the king what will take place in the future; so the dream is true and its interpretation is trustworthy.”

This prophecy and others in Isaiah, Jeremiah, Micah, and Malachi would be remembered by the people living under the Roman occupation of Israel and Judah. They believed that the promised Messiah-King would free them as Moses did from Pharaoh centuries before. However, many could not see the deeper deliverance that would come. His name would be called the Wonderful Counselor, the Mighty God, the Prince of Peace. The nations will willingly come to learn about the Lord, beating their swords into plowshares, and their spears into pruning hooks, to no longer war with one another. Many of them failed to see that righteousness, peace and joy can only come from the Holy Spirit living within us! (Isaiah 9:6, Micah 4:1-4, Romans 14:17)

God through Jeremiah foretold of a change of heart that would change everything. The people who worshiped God would no longer measure their success according to their performance, but they would begin to relate to God in a way that only a few had understood until then. He said He would write his laws upon their hearts and minds, and that they would know Him for themselves. Ezekiel spoke a similar word from the Lord where He would give them a new heart and His Holy Spirit would live in them so they could do His will from a pure desire. (Jeremiah 31:31-34, Ezekiel 11:19-20, 36:25-27)

Is it possible that these prophecies are relevant today? Do some of God’s people need to return to that fresh innocence when they first received a new heart towards Him?

Please consider these things and stay with us as we move from the Old Testament times of promise to the New Testament times of fulfillment! Is is easy to “like” and “follow” our Living Truth Facebook page or subscribe to our blog on

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