Thursday, December 18, 2014

New Testament fulfilment of Old Testament references to the Messiah (Part 1)

OT reference to the Messiah
1.Genesis 3:15

“And I will put enmity between you and the woman and between your offspring and her Offspring: He will bruise and tread your head underfoot and you will lie in wait and bruise His heel”

Revelation: Enmity between your offspring and her Offspring

Your offspring refers to the seed of the serpent. Who is this seed of the serpent? Natural humanity who was led into rebellion against God. So the reprobate (the flesh) against the spiritual.

The enmity is between the serpent and the woman, between the serpent’s seed and her seed. Eventually the head of the serpent and his seed will be crushed. Since we know that this is the end result, why do we choose the way of the flesh?

NT fulfilment of Genesis 3:15

Galatians 4:4

“But when the proper time had fully come, God sent His Son, born of a woman, born subject to the [regulations of] the Law”

Revelation: It was God who sent His Son (as mentioned in Galatians 4:4). It was God who said “I will put enmity between you and...” (Genesis 3:15). It was all God’s action.

This Son was from the seed (off spring) of the woman (“born of a woman” in Galatians 4:4 and off spring of Eve in Genesis 3:15). The genealogy of Yeshua in Luke 3:38 also traces his generational line to the first man, Adam, whose wife was Eve. Yeshua had only an adopted earthly father, i.e., Joseph (Matthew 1:20- Yeshua was conceived of the Holy Spirit. Matthew 1:26, Joseph named Yeshua, taking him as his adopted son)

OT reference to the Messiah 
2. Micah 5:2

“But you, Bethlehem Ephratah*, you are little to be among the clans of Judah; [yet] out of you shall One come forth for Me who is to be Ruler in Israel Whose goings forth have been from old, from ancient days(eternity)”

*Traditionally used to refer to Bethlehem. Also used to describe members of the Israelite tribe of Judah and founders of Bethlehem( 1 Chronicles 4:4 and 1 Chronicles 2:19). If used as a personal name, it means “fruitful”

[Also in Genesis 49:10- “The sceptre will not depart from Judah nor the ruler’s staff from his descendants until the coming of the one to whom it belongs, the one whom all nations will honor”]

NT fulfilment

Matthew 2:1, Matthew 2:4-6

Jesus was born in Bethlehem in Judea during the reign of King Herod...

(King Herod) called a meeting of the leading priests and teachers of religious law and asked “Where is the Messiah supposed to be born?” In Bethlehem, Judea,” they said, for this is what the prophet wrote: And you, O Bethlehem in the land of Judah, are not least among the ruling cities of Judah for a ruler will come from you who will be the shepherd for my people Israel

Revelation: The Messiah comes from Bethlehem and from the tribe of Judah.

OT reference to the Messiah
3. Isaiah 7:14

“ All right then, the Lord himself will give you a sign. Look! The virgin will conceive a child! She will give birth to a son and will call him Immanuel (God with us)”

NT fulfilment

Luke 1: 26-33

“In the sixth month of Elizabeth’s pregnancy, God sent the angel Gabriel to Nazareth, a village in Galilee, to a virgin named Mary. She was engaged to be married to a man named Joseph, a descendant of King David. Gabriel appeared to her and said, “Greetings, favoured woman! The Lord is with you! Confused and disturbed, Mary tried to think what the angel could mean. “Don’t be afraid, Mary,” the angel told her, “for you have found favour with God! You will conceive and give birth to a son, and you will name him Jesus. He will be very great and will be called the Son of the Most High. The Lord God will give him the throne of his ancestor David. And he will reign over Israel forever; his Kingdom will never end!”

Revelation: The passage in Luke specifically mentions that Mary was a virgin and that she will conceive a child who will be the Son of God. In Isaiah  7:14, the virgin will conceive a child- a sign from God Himself.

OT reference to the Messiah
4. Genesis 12:3

To Abraham the Lord said :

“And I will bless those who bless you and curse him who curses or uses insolent language toward you; in you all families and kindred of the earth will be blessed”

Genesis 17: 19

To Abraham the Lord said:

“But God said, Sarah your wife shall bear you a son indeed and you shall call his name Isaac and I will establish My covenant or solemn pledge with him for an everlasting covenant with his posterity after him”

Genesis 22:17- 18
To Abraham the Lord said:

“...And your Seed will possess the gate of His enemies. And in your Seed shall all nations of the earth be blessed and bless themselves because you have heard and obeyed My voice”

Genesis 49:10

“The sceptre shall not depart from Judah, nor a lawgiver from between his feet until Shiloh* come, and unto him shall the gathering of the people be”      
                                               
*Shiloh: In the Bible, it is the prophetic name for the Messiah.

NT Fulfilment

Matthew 1:1

“The Book of the ancestry of Jesus Christ (the Messiah and the Anointed), the son (descendant of David), the son (descendant) of Abraham. Abraham was the father of Isaac, Isaac the father of Jacob, Jacob the father of Judah and his brothers”
Romans 9:5

“To them belong the patriarchs and as far as His natural descent was concerned from them is the Christ Who is exalted and supreme over all, God blessed forever! Amen”

 Galatians 3:8

“And the Scripture foreseeing that God would justify (declare righteous put in right standing with Himself) the Gentiles in consequence of faith, proclaimed the Gospel [foretelling the glad tidings of a Saviour long before hand] to Abraham in the promise saying In you shall all nations [of the earth] be blessed”

Luke 3: 33

“Which was the son of Aminadab, which was the son of Aram, which was the son of Esrom, which was the son of Phares which was the son of Judah”

Hebrews 7:14

“For it is evident that our Lord sprang out of Judah, of which tribe Moses spake nothing concerning priesthood”

Revelation: First thing that came to me was that the Messiah was to be one to bring blessing to all the earth and the blessing was justification of all gentile and Jew by God.

Second that He will possess the gates of the enemies. This means He is in control. Today when we see evil so prevalent, He is still in control.

And the obvious, that is intended to illustrate in the scriptures above is that the Messiah  was the seed of Abraham and Isaac.

He would also, more specifically come from the tribe of Judah (Also see Micah 5:2 above).

Friday, October 3, 2014

Worry

"Quote by Rick Warren

To worry about something that CAN change is silly
To worry about something that CANT change is stupid"

Bible Verse:  Matthew 6: 25-27

For this reason I say to you, do not be worried about your life, as to what you will eat or what you will drink; nor for your body, as to what you will put on. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothing? 26"Look at the birds of the air, that they do not sow, nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not worth much more than they? 27"And who of you by being worried can add a single hour to his life?…


Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Memories Shape Us



Memories shape us. The bad ones can cause us to be bitter and vengeful. We may become so consumed by our bad memories that we see all things, decide all things in life through the lenses of these bad memories.  We could come to see ourselves as victims of life.  Needless to say, this is not the kind of life Jesus wants us to live. A life of no peace, no joy, hindered from absorbing, from realizing the full potential of, His love for us. It is not the life of a victorious Christian, thus ineffective to Him. There is no shalom (wellness,  completeness,  safety,  soundness, success, health  and wholeness).

The good news is we can decide what we want to do with these bad memories.  Let them embitter us? Suppress them? Or  lay them at our Lord’s feet?  The choice is obvious. I would first remember that each of our lives is a story. The main character, the hero in the story is not me- my SELF but Jesus. My painful experience happened. It gave me a bad memory- that can never be taken away. It has done its damage. But here comes my hero Jesus and I gaze at Him and I meditate . I say to Him, you are that which is true, honourable, just,  pure, lovely, admirable, praiseworthy (Philippians 4:8-9).  True! Trustworthy ! Just with honor.  This means you may be trusted and  your words can only be true and beneficial.  I cannot understand “the why” of these incidents that gave rise to my bad memories. But I can do what you, the truthful and honourable and just God want me to do. To believe that You are the perfect love that drives out my fears (1 John 4:18), that you have said “the Lord is at hand” – nearby, within my reach. “Do not be anxious about ANYTHING but in EVERYTHING by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let my requests be made known to you And your peace which is beyond my understanding will guard my heart and my mind in Jesus (Philippians 4: 5-7)” I pray therefore for help to let go, lay it at your feet and not retrieve the bad memory once laid. I surrender all to the hero of this story for Him to takeover. I have no more control. 

He may bring us to a point where we are able to see the usefulness of the bad memory. Perhaps the memory enables us to relate and to help others who have similarly suffered. Perhaps it has built our character, making us stronger, more persevering. Perhaps it has increased our faith- for faith is letting go to that other to take care of the cause of anxiety (not to say we let go but take it back for us to feed our anxiety). Perhaps it has brought us to meet other people who changed our lives or whom we may influence change. 

Perhaps He will bring to remembrance a more accurate picture of the memory. We tend to focus on how we are wronged and forget how we have had a hand in the incident which brought about the bad memory.  We may pray to our Lord to give us a more accurate picture of what really happened. Did I have a hand in it? Get our memories accurate. By His grace, we may be brought to a point where we realize that we have also done wrong (no matter how small our contribution to that wrong has been) and we may forgive as we have been forgiven.

We may be shaken up to realize that we have put someone or something in the centre of our lives, instead of putting God in the centre- as should be the case for us to be able to lead  lives that He intended to the fullest.  It is inevitable that when that someone, that centre leaves us or hurts us, we are shaken. We see cases of persons who cannot be without a partner crushed when that partner leaves them. They are able to rise out of their misery only once another partner comes along and it goes on.  Such draw their identities not from their creator and life source (which is natural) but from a person or perhaps their jobs or their money (which is or should be unnatural).

He may help us focus on how we have been delivered from death to life! Such grace to choose me to know Him (broken sinful person that I am) that I may move forward to please Him.  Perhaps I would come to a point where I am dominated in my thoughts of this deliverance and not dominated by the bad memory. I would do then all things in remembrance of Him. This would be my new lenses.
My prayer is for you to leave your bad memory at His feet- daily if necessary, till you are enveloped by the promised peace.