Thursday, 30 October 2008

Genesis Through Joshua- Leviticus: Sacrifices and Priests

Structure of Leviticus
1-7 Sacrifices
8-10 Regulations for Priests
11-16 Regulations of uncleanness and cleanness
17-25 General regulations for holy leaving
26 Blessing and cursing
27 Regulations of Vows

In this lecture we will be looking at chapters 1-10

The Holiness of Sacrifice 1-7
a) Literary Structure
1-6:7 the role of lay people in the sacrifices
6:8-7:38 the role of Priest in the sacrifices

Order of the sacrifices featured:
1-6:7 (lay people) = burnt, grain, fellowship, sin and guilt
6:8-7:38 (priests) = burnt, grain, sin, guilt, fellowship

b) Types of sacrifices
i) Burnt.
The sacrifice went up in smoke. These sacrifices happened every morning and every evening. Extra offerings happened on other holy days.
Exodus 29:39-42 tells us that burnt offerings were to happen every day
Burnt offerings used cattle, sheep or goats, dove or pigeon.

Rituals of the burnt offering:
Lay people brings the animal into the courtyard, worshipper lays hands, the priest accepts the offering, the worshipper kills the animal, priest collects the blood and sprinkles it on the alter, worshipper skins the animal (except for birds), priests burns the various pieces, worshiper washes the legs, the whole animal is burnt with the priest keeping the skin.

Purpose? 1:4 tells us that the laying on of hands transfers the guilt of the worshipper. Makes the worshipper acceptable by freeing him from guilt and it satisfies the divine wrath of God (expiation and propitiation).

ii) Grain 2:1-16, 6:14-23
A present given from one person to another. These offerings usually followed the burnt of offerings. Used in the first fruits time and adultery situations (Num 5:15)

2 types: Cooked/Uncooked. No yeast, honey, salt, oil or incense was used.

Worshipper prepares the grain, the worshipper takes the grain to the priest, the priest burns a portion of the offering, and then the priest eats the remainder of the offering.

It’s purpose was to demonstrate gratitude to God. The Priest benefits by eating the remaining food!

iii) Fellowship (also called peace) Offering
The offering was voluntary. Confession/free will offering/ vow would happen.
Different types: cow, sheep, goats or bread.

The ritual: The offering was taken to the courts, the worshipper would lay hands, priest would accept the offering then sprinkle blood and burn the fat, the priest would receive the breast and thigh of the offering. The worshipper, family and friends would eat together portions of the sacrifice. Other instructions are found in Lev 7:16-27
The purposes include communion with God and the celebration of God.

iv) Sin
Used in certain specific events and festivals (Numbers 28 and 29).
If a sin offering of the high priest = bull
If for a ruler = male goat
If for a commoner =female goat/lamb
If for the poor = flour

The Ceremony:
Lays hands on the hand
Blood is caught the rest of the blood is put at the foot of the alter
If for the priest the blood is sprinkled on the veil
If for the commoners the blood is put on the altar of burnt offerings

If for the Priest the fatty parts are burnt on the altar
If for laity the fatty portions are burnt on the altar. The Priest then eats the remainder of the offering.

It’s purpose: to cleanse for sins and make atonement. Forgiveness is provided through the sin offerings (Lev 4:26,35).

v) Guilt:
Guilt offerings are needed for times when restoration is necessary in the life of the worshipper. Examples include violation of holy things and theft or cheating (5:14, 6:2-5).

The worshipper makes restitution with a fine if necessary (6:4-5).
The animal is brought to the court, the worshipper confesses the sin, and makes restitution, worshipper kills the animal, priest sprinkles the blood on the altar, the priest burns the fat and entrails, the priest cooks the meat and then eats it, the priest uses the skin.

Purpose: to demonstrate repentance and make restitution through forgiveness.

Why write all these details?
The laity and the priest are both given instructions so that they know that the sacrificial system is sacred.

The Holiness of the Priesthood 8-10
a) Literary Structure
i) Moses consecrates Aaron and his sons as priests
ii) God approves of Aaron and his sons as priests
iii) Aaron and his sons learning how serious the being a priest is

i) Moses concretes Aaron and his son as priest
8:36 Aaron and his sons do everything Moses commands

ii) In chapter 9 God approves of Aaron and his son
9:23-24 God approves in a dramatic way
Moses and Araon go to the tent of meeting. They bless the people. Fire consumes the burnt offering. The people respond by shouting for joy.

iii) Aaron and his sons learning how serious the being a priest is
10:3 Nadab and Abihu brought unauthorised fire before God. Both Nadab and Abihu die.
10:8-11 gives a warning about alcohol and worship. Maybe Nadab and Abihu were drunk when giving the sacrifice?
10:12-20 the sons of Israel must recognise the holiness of God

Sacrifices Today
The OT sacrifices on earth have been shifted to heaven (Mark 10:45, Hebrews 7:27).
We do not need to make atonement for sin anymore. Christ is the final sacrifice given once for all.
We do give some sacrifices. These are not atoning sacrifices but gratitude sacrifices. See 1 Corinthians 9:13-14. The priest benefited from the OT sacrifices. The same should work today. Preachers should be paid a wage from the congregation

Hebrews 13:15-16 tells us that we should give a sacrifice of praise.
1 Peter 2:5 tells us that we are a living temple who give a sacrifice of worship (see also Romans 12:1-2).

God has accepted the atoning sacrifice of Christ. He expects Christ’s followers to make a continuous sacrifice of praise. God requires holiness in worship today, as the OT priests were to be holy.

Wednesday, 29 October 2008

Genesis Through Joshua- Leviticus: Overview

The Extrinsic Agents
1) Critical Viewpoint
Some critic’s claim that Leviticus was written by P (a priestly writer).
P apparently lived during the exile and after the exile. He reflected the mood of the day’s worship-ritualistic and legalistic. He claims that Leviticus wasn’t written in the time of Moses. Moses had liberation and freedom.

2) Mosaic Authorship
We believe in the inerrancy of scripture so we believe that Moses was the author.

3) The sources
1:1 Moses received revelations. Some of the book was written form Moses’ memory.

4) The date of final composition
The book was written anytime after Sinai but before the death of Moses.

5) Redemptive historical observations
The book doesn’t deal with history. It deals with rituals and laws.
The divine King gave Moses rules to instruct Israel and form them into a national theocracy. The book gives the standards of holiness for the people.

Suggested Literary Structure
1-7 Sacrifices
8-10 Regulations for Priests
11-16 Regulations of uncleanness and cleanness
17-25 General regulations for holy leaving
26 Blessing and cursing
27 Regulations of Vows

Meanings of the Book

1) Israel’s meaning
The book tells us about the regulations of holiness. These include rules about the sacrifices and the priesthood. The book ends with a list of blessing and curses. Moses lays out the rules to get people to obey the rules.

‘The future of Israel depends on compliance with the regulations of holiness that God gave at Sinai.’

2) Our meaning
Jesus drove a wedge between the OT regulations and us. There has been a fulfilment of Levitical laws in Christ. Jesus is the hermeneutical bridge between the OT and us.

Let’s divide the book up to find the meaning:
i) OT sacrifices ceremonies
These have heavenly realities that are alive and working for us today (Hebrews 9).
OT sacrifices must be remembered to point us to the greater sacrifice that is Christ.
The tabernacle was a small replica of the heavenly tabernacle.

ii) Regulation for Holy Living
The holiness rules are not to be obeyed explicitly but are to be lived out today as principles. .
Mark 12:30-31: Christ quotes Deuteronomy chapter 6. ‘Love your neighbour as yourself’ comes from Lev 19:18. Leviticus contains the 2nd most important commandment in the whole of scripture.

iii) Blessing and Cursing (Chapter 26)
Can we be cursed as NT believers?
We believe that people who are truly regenerated will never lose their salvation. But there are many who appear Christians but inwardly they don’t know God.
The visible church is threatened with the danger of apostasy. Continuation in sin brings the curse of God (Hebrews 10:26-31). When people who have joined themselves to the covenant by profession of faith turn away they are under the curse of the covenant.

Wednesday, 22 October 2008

Genesis Through Joshua- Exodus: Worship under Moses

The Basic Content of 25-40:38
Tabernacle Instructions 25-31
Rebellion and Renewal 32-34
The tabernacle construction 34-40

Tabernacle Instructions
The tabernacle was patterned after something. Where did Moses get the idea to build a tabernacle in this way? God told him to. How did this happen? God gave him a vision of the heavenly tabernacle.
As Israelites worshipped on earth they reflected the heavenly worship.
The tabernacle was similar to some aspects of the cultural in the day.

1) The tabernacle layout
Larger court had bronze alter, basin.
Inner structure had a holy place and the most holy place or the holy of holies.
The inner sanctum is where the King would sit.
Courtyard where the Priests would work
Outer court.

It was a portable, movable place for the King of Israel.

2) The content legitimates Moses
The material in 25-31 was to show the Israelites that Moses was in legitimate authority
27:21, 28:43- lasting ordinances for generations to come. These things were not oly for the time of Moses.

29:44-45 the tabernacle brings the presence of God. Maintaining the tabernacle was a lot of trouble.

31:18 the giving of the 10 commandments was done in conjunction with the giving of the priestly instructions.

The Israelites should obey because these are commands that have been set down by God not only Moses. What God put in place carries on. We obey these commands through the fulfilment of Christ.

The Rebellion and Renewal

1) Rebellion and Punishment
Aaron and the people put together the golden calf. It illustrates a violation of Mosaic worship structures. God decides to destroy the Israelites. Moses acts as a mediator. God sends a punishment (32:15). Moses comes down hears the noise and rebukes the people (32:25). Moses goes up to the Lord in verse 30. He asks for forgiveness in verse 32. God promised to blot those from the book who have sinned.

God decides that He is not going to be present with the people. Moses pleads and God decides to go with them (32-34).
Sin brings the threat of destruction. Israel continues because of Moses’ intercession.

The tabernacle construction 34-40
1) Literary Structure
34 Sabbath Issued and discussed
35-39 Building materials, offerings, tabernacle, courtyard, priests being put in place
39 Inspection of these things, erection of the tabernacle and the final descent of glory.

Moses did exactly what God had constructed. 39:42-43 ‘Just as the Lord had commanded.’

40:36-38 whenever the cloud lifted they left the tabernacle.

When Israel followed Moses instructions for the tabernacle they were blessed. The second generation must do this as well.

2) Moses Legitimacy
God was with His people because Moses had followed God’s commands.
If the 2nd generation Israelites wanted the power and presence of God with them then they should follow God’s commands.

3) Our meaningWe worship God as Christ has instructed pre-figured in Moses. We lose the blessing of God when we fail to worship according to Christ’s way.

Genesis Through Joshua- Exodus: Modern Perspectives on the Mosaic Law

The Challenge
The OT laws were gifts from God for Israel. How can we apply these laws today?

1) The Problems
The law is a complicated issue because OT laws are complicated. We need to exercise humility when applying the OT law to modern life.

2) The Controversy
The diversity in opinion over the law has always existed. You can find a dominant tendency but not an anonymous voice in history.

Major Trends among Evangelicals regarding the Law
1) Dispensationalism
2) Reconstructionism
3) Traditional Calvinism

1) Dispensationalism
i) The variations among dispensationalists
There are many different threads of Dis. Among the more extreme include Schofield and Darby. The Old Schofield Bible represents a strong view of Dis. The New Schofield Bible moves away from the extreme viewpoints represented by the previous Schofield Bible.

ii) Segmentation of Redemptive History according to C.I. Schofield
These ages are separate divine economies:
Eden- the age of innocence
Fall to the flood- the age of conscience
Noah to Babel- the age of human government
Abraham to Egypt- the age of promise
Moses to John the Baptist- the age of law
Church Age- age of grace
Millennium- age of the Kingdom

Fundamentally each age has its own way of defining the relationship between God and man.
Dispensationalism has been known to say that sinners can be saved by keeping the law in the dispensation of ‘Moses to John the Baptist’.
What about transferability? Can we transfer the law of Moses to the Church age?
Answer: Yes if the teachings of the older age are re-affirmed by the teachings of a later age.

Dis say that 9 out of the 10 commandments are to be kept. The Sabbath principle is not re-affirmed in the NT therefore not to be obeyed.

iii) The Authority of OT Law
The OT law is an inseparable unity. The whole of the OT law will be re-instituted in the millennium. This means the temple must be re-built and animal sacrifices will be re-instated.

iv) Evaluations of this view
Views on the separation of the law
The focus that Dis. have on the effect of Christ’s coming. They take the question ‘What did Jesus do?’ very seriously. They claim He changed the divine economy dramatically.

The segmentation of the Bible. The Bible represents itself as an organic unity.
Dis. tend to have a negative view of the law.

2) Reconstructionism
i) Variations
Moderate = Greg Bahnsen ‘Theonomy in Christian Ethics’
More extreme = Garry North

ii) The unity of Redemptive History
The Bible is like a seed. It grows into a tree. Scripture is one unified revelation of God growing throughout time. Each age builds cumulatively throughout time.

iii) Transferability
Everything from a previous age transfers over unless a revelation from a newer period specifically modifies old principles.
Civil authorities should respect and follow the judicial and moral OT laws with proper sanctions and restrictions. The ceremonial laws are not to be obeyed

iv) Evaluations of this view
The unity of the Bible
They have a positive view of the law

They separate the judicial and ceremonial laws.
They don’t have a high view of Christ’s coming in terms of Christ’s expansion and application of OT principles

3) Traditional Calvinism
i) Unity and diversity of Redemptive History
See chapter 7 of the Westminster Confession of Faith.
Covenant of Works (pre-fall)
Covenant of Grace (promised after the fall and fulfilled in Christ)
The Covenant of Grace is differently administered. The OT is full of the shadows of Christ. The NT is full of the substance of Christ.
The OT and NT are similar and separate. About the two testaments: ‘same substance, different administration’ –Calvin.

ii) How does the Law relate to NT believers?
The WCF divides the law abruptly between the judicial, ceremonial and civil laws.
The moral law binds all people at all times. Christ doesn’t take away from the law. He strengthens the 10 commandments.
Christ is the fulfilment of the ceremonial laws. All worship is given in a new way.
Christ is the fulfilment of the judicial laws. We are no longer a theocracy.

iii) Evaluations of this view
One covenant with different administrations
Christ brings a new way of life
The OT law is looked upon as a positive law

It assumes a sharp distinction within the law.

Dr Pratt’s Position
Dr Pratt leans towards traditional Calvinism. The NT makes out that the OT moral law is given to us today as NT principles.
The Kingdom of God is not a theocracy anymore. From the judicial laws we learn principles of equity and justice.
We learn from the ceremonial laws general principles of holiness and worship.

OT laws are for today but must be understood in the light of Christ.

Tuesday, 21 October 2008

Genesis Through Joshua- Exodus: The Original Meaning of the Law

Suggested structure of Exodus
1-18 Deliverance of Israel under Moses
19-24 The Covenant law under Moses
25-43 Covenant worship under Moses

Unity and Variety within the OT Law
1) The traditional 3-fold division of the law
i) Moral 10 commandments
ii) Judicial Law (social/political structures)
iii) Ceremonial Law (worship regulations)

The OT gives a special status to the 10 commandments. See Exodus 1:18 it is written with the finger of God.
Duet 10:5 = The 10 commandments we’re exclusively put in the Ark of the Covenant.

2) Problems with the 3-fold division
The 10 commandments have judicial and ceremonial elements. 20:16 refers to the court.
Exodus 20:4 refers to a ceremonial law.
31:14-17 = the tabernacle law includes moral aspects.

3) A more integrated approach
There are implications that connect all three types of the law. The background to the ceremonial and judicial law is the moral law. The judicial and ceremonial laws are applications of the moral law. All the laws are cross defining. When dividing the law we have to speak in terms of emphases. When cannot separate the law into mutually exclusive elements.

The 10 Commandments 20:1-17
1) The Basic content
10 commandments are a brief set of principles.
The J and C laws are applications of the 10 commandments. The 10 C’s are a summary. We cannot ignore the judicial and ceremonial laws. To understand the 10 C’s we need to look at the other laws. To understand the J and C laws we must look to the 10 C’s.

2) The two-fold goal of the 10 Commandments
See 19:4-6. God says: ‘If you obey you will be my treasured possession.’
i) God is pulling out of the world a people for Himself- glory for Him
ii) Those who obey become blessed. The 10 C’s bring honour to the believer.

The 10 C’s are not saying ‘Obey me because I told you so’. God gives commandments for our benefit.

When you chase false God’s you get disappointed. When you pursue the real God you get satisfied!

Keeping the Sabbath?
We get relief from labour for worship and our rest.

When we see God commands honour us we gain motivation to obey.

The first 4 commandments focus on God
The last 6 commandments focus on humanity

3) Problem Areas in the 10 Commandments
The 2nd commandment prohibits idols. See Exodus 37. There was a great deal of art in the tabernacle. To what extent can a church go to when using symbols in worship?
What’s the focus of the Sabbath command? Is it rest or worship?
Calvin argues that Is 58:1-14 isn’t prohibiting lawful recreation on the Sabbath. It’s prohibiting sin on the Sabbath.
Is deception lying? Rahab deceived

The Book of the Covenant 20-23

1) The structure of the Book of the Covenant
Ancient-Eastern law codes weren’t normally structured.

i) Beginning: Worship regulations (20:22)
ii) Cases involving: servants, capital crimes, injury, property and possession, idolatry, oppression, loyalty to the divine order, and legal procedures.
iii) Exhortation to obedience 23:20-33
iv) The book closes with worship regulations (23:10)-Sabbath laws and the three annual feasts.

2) The Relationship between the B of C and the 10 C’s
The B of C is the application of the 10 C’s. Why did the OT have so many capital offences? The Bible sees human life as very sacred.
As we look at the B of C we must ask what

3) The Forensic Function of the Book of the Covenant
The book is highly selective. The book of the covenant features case laws. The law was used to show situations where the 10 commandments were applied.

4) The Restrictive and Prescriptive Dimensions of OT Law
Many customs and traditions existed when God gave the law to Moses. The ancient world had many
The Mosaic Law did not give Israel the ideal laws to follow. These laws were accustomed to Israel the laws given were the maximum that Israel could have borne at that time. See Matthew 19: Moses permitted divorce because of hardness of heart.
The command to give a divorce certificate was a command of accommodation. We need Jesus’ hermeneutic when we interpret the Old Testament. The OT we’re not the ideal.
Exodus 21:20 – we can wrongly interpret this, as ‘it’s ok to beat a servant, if he dies that’s ok.’ Instead God was regulating the beating of slaves in Israel. Slavery was not part of human life from the beginning. The ideal from the beginning is that of equality. God is not giving permission for miss-treatment. God is restraining the sin of Israel. This law is a restrictive law not a prescriptive law. A fuller revelation was needed.

5) Problem Areas
People use the OT law as a justification of slavery. ‘Bondservant’ is a person who gives himself willingly to being a slave.
Lev 25. People can become slaves permanently through the possession of law.
The African-American slavery is condemned because of the kidnapping and brutality involved.
Capital punishment is a maximum sentence. Numbers 35:31 speaks of a first-degree murder. We conclude that there are varying degrees of murder and so varying degrees of punishment.

Saturday, 18 October 2008

Genesis Through Joshua- Exodus: Divine Authorisation of Mosaic Law

Suggested structure of Exodus
1-18 Deliverance of Israel under Moses
19-24 The Covenant law under Moses
25-43 Covenant worship under Moses

The Basic Content
Looking at 19-24:11
19: Covenant ceremony
20: Ten Commandments and book of the covenant
24: Another covenant ceremony

The Mosaic Covenant
1) The Basic Idea
God gave an agreement to Israel through Moses (19-24).

Initial covenant agreement 19:1-8
Moses is exalted by God as mediator
Giving of the 10 commandments
Moses is exalted by the people as mediator-giving of the book of the covenant
Ratification of covenant 24

2) The 2 Covenant Ceremony’s
(i) 1st ceremony (19:1-8)
God calls Moses to come to the mount by addressing him first
God wanted the Israelites to remember His grace (v3-4)
Stipulations (v5) Israel must obey the covenant for reward

This is a covenant of grace. It has been initiated by God’s grace.
God’s grace precedes the giving of the law.

V8 The Israelites promise to obey
Moses returns to the Lord

(ii) The second Covenant Ceremony (24)
Moses and others are called to the mountain
V3 the people want to obey (24:7)
Moses writes things down and makes a sacrifice. The blood is sprinkled on the people.
V10 Moses and others saw the God of Israel. They ate and drunk the peace offering. This involved the worshipper eating part of the sacrifice.

The covenant agreement was of benefit to Israel. All people agreed to the covenant.

3) Divine and Popular Authorisation of Moses
19:9-25 there is a discussion between God and Moses.
God promises to come in a cloud and display His power so the people will listen to Moses as an authorised figure.

A similar thing happens in chapter 20:18-21
The people become frightened at God’s presence. The people want Moses to mediate.

God and Israel decided Moses role as mediator.

4) The 10 Commandments
(i) Types of covenants in the ancient near east.
The first is the parody covenant. Two peers make an agreement and bargain over it. These two are equals.
The second is where a superior dictates the terms of the covenant to the subordinate.

(ii) The covenant tablets
All 10 commandments are on the front and back of both tablets. Both copies are kept in the same place- the meeting place.

(iii) Theological implications
The law was benevolence and a mutual bond between God and His people.
The law is positive and good.

The 3 uses of the law
1) Reveal and incite sin
2) Restraining sin by the threat of punishment
3) The moral guide of believers

The law was not given to let Israel know how to earn salvation. God did not expect them to earn their salvation by obedience. The law was given out of God’s grace.

The law was given in 20:1-17
The book of the covenant is given in 20-23

All people were to be equal under the law. The human King was under the law (Duet 17:18-20).

5) The book of the covenant and its organisation
There is little logical order in the book of the covenant.

The book includes teaching on:
The worship of God 20:22-26
Sacred seasons and rituals

Hebrews servants, bodily injuries, how to deal with the poor, reverence for God’s order, sexual sins etc… these will be discussed in a later lecture

(ii) Theological implications.
The law was over all the people
The book of the covenant is not exhaustive. It doesn’t tell us all we need to know.
All these laws were of benefit to Israel.

1) Past meaning
Moses must be obeyed because he mediated God’s will

2) Our meaning today
We must obey Christ because He is our mediator.

Friday, 17 October 2008

Genesis Through Joshua- Exodus: Divine Authorisation in Deliverance and Travelling

Purpose of the book:
To depict Moses as someone authorised by God to establish the law and worship regulations

Suggested structure of Exodus
1-18 Deliverance of Israel under Moses
19-24 The Covenant law under Moses
25-43 Covenant worship under Moses

The Basic Content of Exodus 5-18:27
2 sections:
· The deliverance from Egypt
· The travelling to mount Sinai

Deliverance from Egypt 5-15
1) Literary Structure
First encounter with Pharaoh
Deliverance under Moses
Last encounter with Pharaoh

2) Analysis of the deliverance
Moses is honest about his attitudes and the attitudes of the Israelites
Egyptians take away straw making the work harder.
5:2 = Pharaoh’s attitude to the Lord
6:9 Moses reports what God says to the Israelites but the Israelites disbelief the word of God

6:10-11 God re-commissions Moses to speak to Pharaoh
6:12 Moses loses vision

Israel begins travel
God guides with smoke and fire

14:29-31- God kills the Egyptians in the red sea

15- Celebration of the red sea
A display of hope and confidence in the Lord

The Israelites went from saying ‘Can God deliver us?’ in Egypt to ‘Yes God can deliver us’ after the red sea.

Message to the 2nd Generation:
The story affirms Moses divine authorisation. They should trust in Moses and God.

3) Deliverance through Miracles
1st miracle snakes
3 series of miracles happen with warnings at the Nile- 3 plagues each time.
1st series: Magicians of Pharaoh are put down compared with Moses’ miracles.
2nd series: A distinction between Israel and Egyptians becomes clear. The Egyptians are affected by the plagues.
3rd series: Remarkable distinction between Israel and the Egyptians.
Last miracle of the Passover

The plagues on Egypt show that God supported the authority of Moses on Israel.

4) The Passover Celebration
The Lord sends an angel to pass through the town and kill the first born so of the house that didn’t have blood sprinkled on the doorposts.

11:1-10 Commission, warning, refusal of Pharaoh
12:14-28 Moses speaks to the audience directly
12:43-51 direct instructions for the future (for the 2nd generation)
13:1-16 Commandment to consecrate the first born

Moses is telling the story of the Passover because in the story we see regulations for how the 2nd generation Israelites are to live.

The Travelling to Sinai 15-18
People doubt Moses leadership and wisdom. These stories vindicate the leadership of Moses.

15:23 The Israelites grumble against Moses and refuse to obey. Moses cries out to the Lord
15:25 the water becomes sweet by Moses actions.
The Lord tests them and then re-affirms that He is the God who heals. The Israelites doubt Moses. Moses leadership is vindicated by the miracle and God’s own words.

16:2-3 in the desert the community grumble again.
16:6-8 Moses and Aaron speak to the Israelites and promise that they will see the glory of the Lord. ‘You are not grumbling at us but against the Lord’.
16:13-14 Miracle of manna and quail.

17:2-4 the Israelites were without water. The people test the Lord through Moses.
17:5-6 the miracle takes place at the rock of Horeb.

17:8-16 When Moses hands grew tired the Israelites started losing against the Amalekites. When Moses arms were lifted the Israelites prevail.
17:14 this is an event to be remembered.

18:20-21 Moses is supposed to teach the law and establish officials to teach the law.

The original Israelites should believe in the Mosaic leadership because God worked through the hands of Moses.

We should follow Moses and Christ because their leadership was vindicated.

Wednesday, 15 October 2008

Genesis Through Joshua- Exodus: Divine Authorisation in Moses' Birth and Call

We want to understand how the first 4 chapters of the book contribute to the rest of the book.

Moses writes this book to defend his authority and programme.

Remember the structure previously mentioned:
1-18 Deliverance of Israel under Moses
19-24 The Covenant law under Moses
25-43 Covenant worship under Moses

Basic Content
1:1-2:10 Moses Birth
2:11-4:31 Call of Moses

Moses Birth 1:1-2:10
Why did Moses write about his birth the way he did?

1) 3 failed oppressions
1-1:14 Israel multiplies under oppressive suffering
1:15-1:21 Pharaoh orders the midwives to kill the children -the midwives disobey
1:22-2:10 Pharaoh orders his men to throw the children in the Nile-story of Moses birth

2:10 = Moses is named

2) Ironic Reversal of Oppression
Pharaoh tries to stop the multiplication. He decides that working them hard would stop them increasing. The Israelites multiply all the more.

Pharaoh wants to oppress the Israelites by the midwives. The midwives makes a bad excuse. They say the Israelite women have children with speed! Pharoah accepts the explanation. More multiplication.

Pharaoh orders genocide. Moses is placed in the Nile. Pharaoh’s own daughter rescues Moses and names him. ‘Moses’ = he was drawn out of the water (this is the Hebrew explanation). The Egyptian word for Moses means ‘Son’.

Moses message: ‘My birth was the climax of God’s ironic reversal of decrees set against us’. It all worked for his good!

Moses’ call to lead Israel
Moses kills a man through anger at the oppression and so has to leave Egypt. Flees to Median. God then calls him by a burning bush. Moses comes back to Egypt.

1) Moses flees Egypt
The story shows that Moses was concerned about his own people. Moses identifies himself with Israel.
2:14 ‘who made you a ruler….’. Moses runs.

2) 2:15-2:22 Moses leaves to go to Midian.
2:21 Moses and Zipporah have a son called Gershom. Moses says ‘I have become an alien in a foreign land’ (NIV). KJV writes the verse in the past tense.
While Moses was in Egypt he was a foreigner. Moses is re-iterating that he is happy in Median. He does not see Egypt as his home. Moses is affirming to the Israelites that he belongs with them. He is defending his right and authority over the Israelites.

3) God remembers and has compassion.
Moses leadership was in fulfilment of the covenant that the Lord made with the patriarchs (2:24-3:1). Moses introduces his call as an act of God’s compassion and will.

4) 3:1-4:17 God calls a reluctant Moses.
Again Moses is defending his role as the leader of Israel. An angel of the Lord calls Moses.
Moses didn’t think of himself as adequate for the job. His position of leadership was not his desire. He has a lack of confidence in his natural skill and ability.

3:11 = Moses questions ‘Who I am?’. God promises a sign- worship on the mountain (Sinai). The readers knew this had happened.

3:14 = ‘I am who I am’ this could be translated ‘I cause to be what I cause to be’.
God is revealing Himself to Moses as a divine warrior leading the armies to battle. See 3:20. God is promising to act as a warrior.
15:3 = ‘The Lord is a warrior’ God enforces the promises of the covenant.

Moses is represented as one who is forced by God to take a leadership role.

5) Preparations for the tasks
4:19-20 Moses leaves Midian.
4:24-26 Moses fails to keep the covenant so Zipporah circumcises their Son.
Moses is humble admitting his mistakes.

6) Moses Returns to Egypt with Aaron
4:27-28 Moses and Aaron were a team

Summary Meaning
All of these stories tell the Israelites that Moses does not want to exert his own authority over the people. He only wants to respond to the calling of God.

Meaning for today
The church should look to Christ as their divinely ordained leader. The NT shows us that Christ is qualified for this work. Therefore we should trust him.

Genesis Through Joshua- Exodus: Overview

The Extrinsic Agents
1) Authorship
Remember the JEDP authors. We reject this on the basis of previous reasons.
Moses was the author. He used aural sources for the events not in his memory.

Exodus includes 2 separate documents:
Then 10 commandments, Exodus 20
The book of the Covenant, Exodus 21-24

2) Date of writing
Exodus 16:35 tells us that the Israelites ate manna for 40 years. Meaning this book was a second-generation book. See also Joshua 5:10-12.

This book was written when the Israelites were at the border of Canaan.
Scriptures in exodus tend to indicate that the book was written for the second generation who were faced with the task of going into Canaan.

Approaches to the text
We will be using an approach of literary analysis. This approach asks these questions:
Why does Moses write down these events? What was Moses teaching the 2nd generation?

Different approaches to the Structure of the Book.

Geographical approach:
Israel in Egypt
Israel in the wilderness
Israel at Sinai

Thematic approach:
18-24 Torah and its precepts
25-43 The tabernacle and its services

Dr Pratt’s approach:
1-18 Deliverance of Israel under Moses
19-24 The Covenant law under Moses
25-43 Covenant worship under Moses

The Message of Exodus
1) Original message
The people were saying: ‘why should we follow Moses?’
Moses’ leadership is continually questioned.

The original message tells us that God Himself has authorised the whole Mosaic programme.

2) The message for us today
The three major themes:
1-18 Deliverance
19-24 Law
25-43 Worship

Jesus has come to fulfil the book of Exodus. Moses has affirmed what Moses said. Christ is our leader. We follow everything He teaches as it is rooted in Moses. Christ has applied the Mosaic themes (deliverance, law, and worship) to His kingdom. We praise you King Jesus!!

Genesis Through Joshua- Genesis: Joseph's Life and Israel's Hope

We have already seen:

1) Primeval History: 1-11:9

2) Patriarchal Times including Abraham, Isaac, Jacob: 11:10-36:43
Now we look at the Life and times of Joseph (37-50)

The Basic Overview
1) Literary Structure
Joseph and his brother struggle about the future (dream, Joseph being sold)
Joseph’s rise in Egypt
Joseph and his brother are at peace about the future
Jacob’s death
Joseph’s death

2) Intra-tribal relations
The Joseph stories teach the tribes of Israel how to relate to each other.

3) Disunity and Egypt
Joseph and his brother’s struggle, Joseph gets sold to Egypt. These brothers are the heads of the tribes of Israel. Joseph is a proud guy.

When in Egypt the dreams of Joseph become true. The brothers start to understand why bad things happen to them. They repent and have humility.
44:16-34 shows us that the brothers had guilt.
V16- God uncovered the guilt.

The brothers have violated the law-they need reconciliation.
45:4 ‘Come near to me’ says Joseph to his brothers.

In chapter 50 Jacob dies. The brothers are worried that the reconciliation might end.
They Joseph might pay them back.
50:20 = God meant everything for his good! Joseph is an example of humility, love and unity.

This message is suitable for today. We need unity within the tribes in the church (denominations) with need to show kindness and unity.

The Blessings of the Tribes
Duet 33:1-29 lists blessings and roles for the tribes to have.
48:1-22 Joseph is honoured as the first-born as a result his Son’s (Manasseh and Ephraim) were treated as equal to all the other tribes of Israel.

Chapter 49 describes the other sons of Joseph and their prophetic blessings.

1) Joseph’s Special Role
Jospeh is a proud brat
He shows himself to be morally pure
He is blessed because God is with him
He is used for revelation
He is loving and forgiving
He is an exemplary Wiseman
He has confidence that the Israelites will be in the land of promise

Joseph starts off as a negative character and then turns into a positive character.

2) What about Judah?
He has many positive attributes.

Judah has a leading role in the future. Judah is the tribe that gives birth from Judah.
Joseph and Judah are the honoured tribes among the Israelites.

Israel’s Hope for Canaan
Jacob died and was buried in the land of promise. The Israelites turn back to Egypt.

In Chapter 50:24-25 we see the last words spoken by Joseph. He is speaking about how God will bring the Patriarchs to the land of promise. Moses is telling the Israelites that they must move forward to the Promised Land.

End of Genesis!

All of Genesis taught Israel to leave Egypt and pursue victory in Canaan.

Tuesday, 14 October 2008

Genesis Through Joshua- Genesis: Jacob's Life and Israel's Hope

We are going to continue in the Patriarchal History (Genesis 11:10-36:43).

Abraham’s Life 11:10-25:18
Jacob’s Life 25:19-36:43

Isaac’s life does not have a separate section. His life is combined in these sections as Abraham’s Son and Jacob’s Dad.

Typical Concerns
Jacob’s ladder
Jacob’s deceit
Jacob’s personality- he doesn’t seem to be a good by
Jacob’s wrestling with God

Literary Structure
Jacob and Esau
Jacob with Laben
Jacob with Esau

Jacob and Esau: The Names and the Nations
(Genesis 25 and 35:16-36:43)

Pre-natal struggle-25:21
Rebekah has twins who are fighting inside.
25:23- two nations are in Rebekah’s womb- the older shall serve the younger.

Descendants of:
Jacob =Israel
Esau = the Edomites
Jacob means trickster or deceiver.
Esau means hairy or red.

25:27-34 The selling of the birthright
Esau was the expected air as the first-born son.
25:33 Esau swears an oath selling his birthright.
The Israelites have a right to the inheritance because he gave it over by oath.
The Edomites lost their birthright by legal oath. Esau despised his birthright.

Jacob represents the 12 tribes of Israel.
36:43 the descendants of Esau are the Edomites.

Israel was instructed to live at peace with the Edomites (as with the Moabites) because they were cousins.

Conflict and Reconciliation between Jacob and Israel
1) Conflict
26:34 Esau’s wives and failures. His wives caused grief to Isaac and Rebekah.
Jacob gains his inheritance by deceit. The Israelites should be humble to the Edomites.

Jacob flees Esau and finds a wife within Israel. Israel is the pure line.

Esau intermarries with Ishmaelites and Canaanites (28:6-9).

28:10-22 God promises Esau the promises and thus the Israelites receive the promises.

2) Reconciliation
32: Jacob fears and prays with humility
32:7-12 Jacob divides the people into two groups in fear of the Edomites.
Jacob realises how undeserving he is.
32:20 Jacob acts with kindness.

Jacob admits his name to God as a deceiver when wrestling with Him.
God gives Jacob a new name ‘Israel’ meaning the one who struggles with God.
Names characterise the people.

33:12-17 Jacob leaves Esau behind. There is reconciliation but no lasting unity as they move onto Canaan.

The Foreign Conflict: Jacob’s blessing and Isaac’s blessing
Isaac’s blessing 26:1-33
The inheritance belongs to Isaac. God gave the inheritance to Isaac.
Isaac was the father of Jacob.

The Message for the Israelites
Don’t worry the land is yours!

Genesis Through Joshua- Genesis: Abraham's Life and Israel's Hope Part 2

The Structure of Abram’s Life
11:10-12 Abram’s election and blessing (i)

13-14 Abram and surrounding people (ii)

15-17 Abram’s covenant relationship with God (iii)

18-21 Abram and surrounding people (iv)

22-25 The future of Abraham’s blessing (v)

We’re going to be looking at (iii) and (v)

(iii) The Literary Structure of Genesis 15-17
15: The promises that God makes to Abraham
16: Abraham fails by going in with Hagar
17: God comes back to Abram and renews the covenant

1) The Covenant Promises
It was important for the Israelites to have children.
God assures Abraham of the promise.

15:7-21 God confirms the promise to Abram that he will receive the Promised Land.
Abram prepares a ceremony cutting up animals. Abram falls asleep and has a trance. God assures Abram of His promises in the dream. God promises that He will be cursed if He doesn’t keep up to His promises.
God promises on the basis of grace and not works.
16- Abraham’s failure
Galatians 4 tells us that Abram turned away from the promise taking things into his own hands. Ishmael is born by Hagar. Ishmael is in hostility against others forever.

The practise of having a surrogate mother in this culture was acceptable.

2) Covenant Responsibilities
17:1 is written 13 years after the Ishmael event. God makes it clear that he must walk before Him and be blameless.
V9 tells us that Abram had a responsibility in the covenant- circumcision.
People who violate the covenant will be cut off from the covenant and left to die.

Was the covenant conditional or unconditional?
It was both.
Unconditional: the goodness comes from God’s promises and grace.
Conditional: anyone who claimed to be a child of God and turned away in denial was cut off from the covenant.

3) Moses message:
Israel must learn that their covenant relationship is the same to that covenant given to Abraham.

(v) Genesis 22-25 Literary Structure
Isaac is the illustration of multiplication and victory.
The death of Sarah signifies the partial possession of the Promised Land.

1) Abraham’s Assurance of a Future
Abraham was willing to sacrifice his own Son as a result his seed possess the land.
24:1-66 (Marriage of Isaac to Rebekah) has a lot to do with the purity of the line.
24:60 the result of purity is blessing.

Israel is to be reminded that they are airs of Isaac- the pure line to posses the gates of their enemies.

The Message to us
We have a two-fold covenant. We are blessed with grace but must persevere to the end to be saved.
Our future blessings are Abraham’s future blessings in Christ.

Thursday, 9 October 2008

Genesis Through Joshua- Genesis: Abraham's Life and Israel's Hope Part 1

The Life of Abraham: Starting at Genesis 11:10

An Overview

1) The Exodus Readers
We want to know what Moses was teaching the Israelites through this section.

2) Literary Structure

There is not an easy to discern pattern. But we can say an overarching structure.

11:10-12 Abram’s election and blessing (i)
13-14 Abram and surrounding people (ii)
15-17 Abram’s covenant relationship with God (iii)
18-21 Abram and surrounding people (iv)
22-25 The future of Abraham’s blessing (v)

Gen 12:1-3 = the call of Abram by God
V1: God’s command (12:1 = should be ‘the Lord had said’)
V2a-c: God’s blessing on Abram
V2d-3: Abram’s relation to others. Others will be blessed or cursed through him.

(i) 11:10-12:20 Abram’s election to blessing

11:10-11:32 the background to Abram’s life

1) Genesis 12:1-9
Abram is called to the land of Canaan. This is not an abstract land.
12:7 God says that Abram’s offspring would gain the land. Moses is saying to the Israelites ‘this is your land’.
12:6 The Canaanites were in the land. Abraham went from the north to the south. The Israelites had to go from the south to the north.

Moses message through this passage: As Abram responded to God’s call to blessing in the land so Israel should respond to God’s call of blessing.

2) Gen 12:10-20
V10 Abram travels to Egypt for a little while. Abram gets stuck in Egypt
V17 God plagues Pharaoh for taking Sarai
V20 Abram leaves with riches

The passage obviously corresponds to the situation in Exodus.

(ii and iv) Abraham and Surrounding Peoples

In the stories of Abram’s life he dealt with different kinds of people:
Lot, the King of Sodom, Ishmael, Abimelech.
All of these people are representatives of tribes:

Lot = father of Moab and Amon
Sodom= Canaanites
Ishmael = Ishmaelites (Arabs)
Abimelech = Philistines

The Israelites were to learn how to act with these people groups through Abram’s example.

Duet 20:10-18 shows who were to be destroyed. The Canaanites were to be destroyed but the Ishmaelites, Philistines and Moabites were to be left.

1) Abraham and Lot: Gen 13:1-18
Abraham and Lot have a conflict. Abraham shows kindness by moving northward letting Lot go south. Lot goes to the bottom of the Jordan valley. Lot settles near the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah. Lot moves in the way of sin. The Israelites come across the descendants of Lot (the Moabites). They are to be to be kind to them as Abraham was but to be separate because they have an inclination to get in the way of sin.

2) Genesis 14
Northern Kings come to the South and subjugate it. Rebellion against the Northern Kings. The Northern Kings stamp out the rebellion. They move back to the North with Lot and take the treasure. Abram comes with 318 men kills the Northern Kings rescues Lot and returns the riches. Melchizedek blesses Abram.
Abram refuses to deal with the King of Sodom.

Moses’ message from the passage: ‘Israel will have victory against great odds. By kind to the Moabites and separate yourself from their sin. ’

3) Abraham and Mediation 18-19, 20
Sodom and Gomorrah is a listen for the Israelites to intercede for the righteous.
Abram intercedes for Abimelech even though He was from the line of the Philistines.

These stories teach Israel to intercede for the righteousness; even the righteousness that don’t belong to Israel.

4) Abram and the Ishmaelites
From 21:11-13 we see Abram has Isaac (child of promise) and Ishmael. 21:11 and 13 tell us that Ishmael was blessed by God and cared for by God. This should be the attitude of the Israelites and Ishmaelites today.

5) Abram and the Philistines
Abram made a covenant of peace and lived with the Philistines (21:27-32).
Israel should observe these terms of peace.

Overall Meaning

Israel has been called and delivered as Abraham was called and delivered. The church should do the same.

Wednesday, 8 October 2008

Genesis Through Joshua- Genesis: Judgement/Deliverance and the New Order

In this lecture we’re going to be looking at the last portions of the primeval history.

Life in Egypt was opposite to life in Eden.
The fallen world is paralleled to Egypt. The Garden of Eden is parallel with Canaan.

The Overview

1) The Basic Content
6-9:17 The Flood as judgement

2) Competing Viewpoints
Moses is dealing with different viewpoints
The Israelites saw their deliverance as trouble not restoration.

The judgement and deliverance of the flood 6:9-9:17

1) Typical concerns:

Where is the ark?
What about the stability of seasons (end of chapter 8)?
Was the flood global or local?

We will answer the last question.

2) Reasons to believe in a universal flood:

i) 2 Peter 3:5-15
Peter divides time into 3 separate ages
Creation of the earth (pre-flood) v5-6
Present heavens and earth (post-flood) v7
New Heaven and Earth at the 2nd coming v13

Peter saw the food as parallel to the 2nd coming of Christ.
Is the 2nd coming of Christ local or global? It is a global judgement therefore the flood of Noah is universal.

ii) The waters described
The waters come from above and from below. This language is used at creation. Creation was global (!) as is the flood.

iii) The flood of Noah is universal in that it destroys all of humanity.
God repeats the cultural mandate (Gen 1:28-31) suggesting a complete re-establishment of the culture.

3) Literary Structure of the Flood
Begins: Corruption of the world- Noah enters the ark
Ends: The new world – Noah exits the ark
Gen 8:1 = ‘God remembers Noah’ is the middle of the story.
We see symmetry in the story.

4) The Original Meaning of the Flood and the Ark Story

God’s flooding signified His anger.
God’s bow in the sky signified peace.

After the ark the world is set into an arena of peace. We have a restoration and re-order. ‘Rainbow’ means bow like an Indian’s bow and arrow. God has arrows like as in Psalm 18. God is shooting arrows from the bow in judgement during the flood.
After the flood God leaves His bow in the sky promising never to judge in the same way again. The bow is pointing away from us. By this God shows us He is declaring peace (Gen 8:21-22).

God re-iterates the cultural mandate in Genesis 9.

One of the first things that caused the destruction of humanity was Cain’s murder of Abel. God immediately establishes a new ethical order to Noah (Gen 9:5). No longer will murderers be protected by God, they should be punished.

Noah is the deliverer from judgement of the flood.
Moses is the deliverer from judgement of Egypt.

Israel is delivered through the red sea and the Egyptians are punished by the red sea.
In the same way Noah and his family was saved by water and the rest were punished by it.

Noah means ‘rest’. It is a rest from corruption.
Moses calls Canaan a similar name to Noah. He is saying that Canaan is a place of rest.

Moses is saying: I am like Noah bringing you out of judgement into restored rest and new order

The New Order: Genesis 9:18-11:9

1) Basic Content
i) Genesis 9 and 10
Ham, Shem and Japheth
Ham looks on Noah’s nakedness. (Could be a homosexual act).
9:24 Noah curses Canaan (the son of Ham). This is a curse on the Canaanites.

Shem is blessed. The Canaanites are to be slaves to the Shemites (9v26).
Japeth is blessed. The Japhethites will conquer the Canaanites by living with them (9v27).

The future of Noah’s sons was a story that gave justification for the Israelites to take over Canaan.
From the time of Noah the act of Ham set up the Holy war of Israel towards the Canaanites.

ii) Genesis 11: The Tower of Babel
The people plan to build a tower to reach heaven. God mocks them for such an idea and scatters them.

Duet 1:26 ‘up to the sky’ is the same expression as reaching to Heaven.
Duet 9:1 ‘walls up to the sky/heaven’
Moses is saying: ‘there has been a city that tried to reach heaven. This city [referring to Duet 1:26/9:1] seems invincible because its walls were so high. God didn’t have trouble with the tower of Babel. He destroyed that tower and will help us.’

Babel means ‘gate of God’. Hebrew word ‘confuse’ sounds like ‘Babel’. With this understanding Gen 11:9 makes sense.

The Judgement Delivers a New Order

The concept of Holy War is part of the restoration process.
The church should recognise deliverance in Christ produces a good holy war in the soul. Our fighting of these battles evidences the restoration waiting for us in Heaven.

Saturday, 4 October 2008

Genesis Through Joshua- Genesis: The Corruption of Cosmic Order

2 Cor 5:17- becoming a Christian is being remade back into the original cosmic order
Hebrews 4:9- there is a Sabbath rest for the people of God

Therefore Genesis 1 is not just about the creation then. It’s about our new nature now and what we have to look forward to in the new creation! Genesis 1 teaches us about salvation. The passage wasn’t only intended to instruct about history, it is meant to teach about today and the future!

Overview: 2nd part of the Primeval Period
Expulsion from paradise 2-3
Corruption of paradise 4-6:8

Moses looks at Egypt as a place of curse. He saw the movement toward Canaan as a place of blessing and rest.

1) Expulsion from Paradise: Chapters 2-3
Answers questions about marriage, death, hardness of life, the root of evil.
These questions are not going to be answered by using the Literary analysis.

(A) Literary Structure
Beginning: Man is commissioned to cultivate the garden
End: Expulsion from the garden

V18-25 Conditions get better with the birth of woman
Adam and Eve violate their commission and hence God
They want knowledge like God

God curses them both and expels them
Their sin brings great shame
3:21 God deals with the shame by covering them

(B) What’s the Original Meaning?
The garden is the garden of God, the place of the King who rules the universe.
The garden is described as a plenteous place
Adam and Eve are given rest in the garden

Kings in the time of the Israelites had great gardens. Only Kings were allowed to eat from the garden. But in the Garden of Eden Adam and Eve are allowed to eat from all but one of the trees.

Eden is compared to Canaan. Moses is saying: ‘I’m trying to take you to place where God intends you to be. That is Canaan.’
The ideal of Eden contrasts with Egypt.

Violation brought Adam and Eve out of the garden.
Disobedience to the law brings fear, judgment and shame.
Moses reminds the Israelites through Genesis 2 and 3 that it’s not blessed to disobey.

Man is cursed with toil and labour. This is paralleled with the slavery experienced in Egypt.

2) Corruption of Paradise: Humanity Under the Curse chapters 4-6:8
(A) Literary Structure
(i) Cain murders Abel
(ii) Cain’s genealogy
(iii)Seth replaces Abel
(iv)Seth’s genealogy
(v) Closure Story (6:1-8)

(i) Cain murders Abel
They have different social roles:
Cain is an agriculturalist. Abel is a shepherd.

Abel’s sacrifice was accepted. Cain’s sacrifice was not accepted.
Cain murders Abel.
Cain cries out in mercy.
God puts a mark (not a curse) on Cain (4:9-15) to protect him.

4:16 = Cain lives protected by God even though he’s a murderer. The faithful one is not protected.
Cain becomes a city builder.

(B)(i) Original Meaning
Egyptians and Israelites
Gen 46:34 = All shepherds are detestable to the Egyptians.
Abel = Shepherd. Israelites are the faithful to God.
Cain is like Egypt. Life in Egypt is like Cain killing the faithful. It’s unfair.
Cain is murderous and protected. The Egyptians killed and prospered because of their wickedness.
Moses is saying: ‘the murder of Cain is like the persecution you experience in Egypt. The ideal is gone when you leave paradise.’

(iii) 4:25-26
Seth is born. At that time men started to call on the name of the Lord.

Exodus 3:7 = the people cry out to the Lord because of suffering.
The Sethite’s start to cry out to God because of the murder of Abel

(ii) Cain’s genealogy
Why are the genealogies written?
Cain and Seth both have an Enoch.
4:17 = Cain’s Son Enoch is named after the city.
The Egyptians named cities after themselves.

4:23-24 = Lamech is saying that God will protect him for unjust murder.
The Cainites are delighting in their murders. Just like the Egyptians did.

4:20-22 Adah bring increasing sophistication and increasing evil.

(iv) Seth’s genealogy
This Enoch walked with God (5:24)
This Lamech (5:28) had a son called Noah. Brought a son that brought comfort.

Cainites = Increasing Sophistication and wickedness
Sethites = Increasing love for God, had humble words, brought deliverance and rest.

Moses was born to bring deliverance for the people of God.
Meaning: Moses is a Sethite in nature; follow him!

(v) 6:1-8
Sons of God = Royalty
The royalty force themselves on peasant women bringing corruption.
Their sin grieves God so much that He vows to wipe out mankind apart from Noah.

Moses is saying: ‘God will judge those who have oppressed (the Egyptians) and He will spare the righteous.’

NT Elaboration
We as Christians must eave the world as it is corrupt and God will judge it. We need to move on and embrace the paradise God has for us! Amen!!

‘Oh how I love Your law it is my meditation day and night’ :-)

Friday, 3 October 2008

Genesis Through Joshua- Genesis: The Primeval History

The Primeval period is Genesis 1:1-11:9

Content of the Primeval Period
1) Overview of the Primeval History
1-2:3 Ideal cosmic order (creation story)
2:4-3:24 Corruption of the cosmic order (the fall)
4-6:8 Corruption of humanity and genealogies of Cain and Seth
6:9-9:17 Judgement of the flood
9:18-11:9 Stories after Noah (future/new order)

2) Ancient near-Eastern Background to the Primeval History
The book does not stand alone-other texts sound similar to Genesis.
Moses wrote things in Genesis which resembled other stories in the ancient eastern background

Other texts:
Anooma-elish: Babylonian creation myth
Gilgamish epic: flood legend
Anti-levian Kings: Primeval Kings roaming the earth before the flood

Optra-Housis text: One big story featuring information from the other texts.

(Don’t copy these spellings! I tried to write down the sounds I heard)

3) The Original Meaning of the Primeval History
People used the texts to guide current national policies.
The texts establish the authority of the present King.

Overall purpose: Moses is trying to convince the Israelites that leaving Egypt an going to the Promised Land is a creation ordinance.

The Ideal Cosmological Order

Critical View: Scholars don’t believe that Gen 1-3 is historical but mythological.

Other approaches:
1) Literal- 6 days of 24 hours.
These people believe in a 6-10 thousand year old earth.
God rests on the Sabbath
The text features the words ‘evening and morning' to define days

2) Epical approach- 6 days means 6 periods of time
These people tend to accept an old earth theory
‘Yom’ = day doesn’t always mean a 24 hour period in Genesis

Both of 1) and 2) can be varied by ‘The Gap Theory’
The Gap Theory states that there is a time gap between Genesis 1v1 and Genesis 1v2

3) Hymnic or poetic approach- claims that the creation account is not in chronological order.
Gen 2v4 is considered the beginning of the creation account.

The 6 Days of Order
In Genesis 1v2 we learn two things about the universe
Formlessness – no shape
Empty/Void –nothing to occupy the shape

Form is brought by days 1, 2 and 3
Occupation (to fill the void) is brought by days 4, 5 and 6

There is correlation between days 1 and 4, 2 and 5, 3 and 6. The creation of day 1 is filled by the creation of day 4 and so on.

The Message of the Primeval Period
The world was formless and the Spirit was hovering over the deep.
Deuteronomy 32:10-11 = poetry describing God’s bringing Israel out of Egypt
Same Hebrew words (for formlessness and hovering) are used in Gen 1:1 and Deut 32:10-11.

Egyptians say only Pharaoh is the image of God
Babylonians say only the emperors are in the image of God
Genesis says that all people are in the image of God!

Adam and Eve are supposed to subdue and fill the earth, same for Israel in Canaan.

God’s Sabbath rest in creation parallels with our rest commanded for the 7th day.

In the text life in Egypt parallels to the pre-created world. Life in Egypt for the Israelites was void and formless where Pharaoh was the only one in the image of God. The good created world is paralleled with the land of Canaan. Hence it encouraged the Israelites to travel through the wilderness to pursue the good land.

The Modern Meaning of the Story
Life in Christ is a return to the proper cosmological order form. The implications of John 1:1 prove that in Christ is a new world-the good created order!
The light that is shown through Christ is the same light shown in creation!

Praise God for an inspired book!

Thursday, 2 October 2008

Genesis Through Joshua- Genesis: Overview

The Extrinsic Agents
Who is the writer of the book?

1) The Critical Documentary Hypothesis of the OT Pentateuch
Julius Wellhausen (1844-1918) a German Scholar used a set of criteria to find the supposed four main traditions behind the Pentateuch. These criteria are as follows:

· Divine Names used in a particular passage
· Doublets used. These are sections of scripture that say the same thing.
· The Theological emphases in a passage.

The four sources are known as J, E, D, and P.

· Refers to God as YHWH (Jehovah)
· The writer of the Davidic period (1000BC)
· Supposedly wrote the stories of creation and the fall
· Wrote to support David’s monarchy

· Used Elohim to refer to God.
· Northern Writer
· Writing 800-700BC
· Emphases the background of the northern tribes

· Wrote the book of Deuteronomy
· Wrote to support Josiah’s reforms in 622BC

· Authored by Priests
· Wrote during or after the exile
· Wrote to support the Priestly function
· Wrote the worship/sacrifice parts of the Pentateuch

Critical scholars don’t agree on the identity of J, E, D, and P.
Recently many dispute this theory (Rev Charles from Yale)

The Jews have always considered the first five books of the Bible as written by Moses

2) Mosaic Authorship
Moses used aural and written sources to compose the Pent.
It’s reasonable to assume that Moses gained information from his mother for the Pent.
Moses used scribes to write the Pent.
Moses didn’t sit down and write the Pent all at once with God speaking directly. He collected sources.
Moses was the controller of the text.

3) Minor Additions to the Pentateuch
Genesis 14v40: The place ‘Dan’ was not called Dan until Judges 18. It looks like someone has updated the text.
There can be minor additions to the Pent books.
The Hebrew of the Pent is not in the style of the Moses would have written in. The Hebrew was updated to the Hebrew of the Patriarchal times.

E.J. Young: ‘Under divine inspiration there may have been later minor editions and even revisions. Substantially and essentially it is [the Pent] the product of Moses.’

The stories of the Pent come from the time of Moses.

Biblically why is Moses the author?
Moses is seen as the prominent lawgiver in the NT.
References to the Pent are quoted as Moses in the NT.
The Literary analysis supports the idea.

4) The Date and Location of the Final Composition of Genesis
Written: After the burning bush event Exodus 3
And before Moses death-recorded in Deuteronomy 34:5

Genesis could have been written in Egypt, Sinai, Wilderness, or Moab.

Literary Structure of Genesis
1) 10 sections found by observing the Hebrew word for generation:

Heaven and Earth
Noah’s Sons

2) Alternative Division proposed by Dr Pratt:
Primeval History: 1-11:9
Patriarchal Times including Abraham, Isaac, Jacob: 11:10-36:43
Joseph’s Times 37-50

The Message of Genesis
1)Why did Moses write this book?
The book of Genesis had a relevant message to the audience that was hearing it.

2) What were the concerns of Moses readers?
Could be one of two groups of people:
Either 1st Generation: All minus 2 (Joshua and Caleb) died in the Wilderness, or 2nd Generation

The concerns of the 1st generation:
‘Did we do the right thing by leaving Egypt and marching through the miserable wilderness?’

The concerns of the 2nd generation:
Numbers 13 and 14: ‘Entering Canaan and conquering the giants will be a hard thing’

Moses wrote Genesis to address both of these issues. He didn’t write Genesis just to record history!

So the summarised meaning of Genesis:
‘Leaving Egypt and possessing Canaan is God’s design for Israel.’
The Israelites were to read the stories of Genesis to see that it’s right to go onto the Promised Land.

Genesis taught the 1st generation that He would take them out of Egypt. It was pre-planned by Him.
Genesis to the 2nd generation taught of the assurance of possessing Canaan.

The Modern Application of Genesis
We should leave the world based on the promises of Christ to pilgrimage to the new Heaven and Earth. We’re not following Moses; we’re following Christ.

Wednesday, 1 October 2008

Genesis Through Joshua- Introduction: Summarising the Original Meaning

Can we understand the original meaning of a text in a way that is effective for the church?

Original Meaning and Interpretive Summaries
The text has one coherent meaning.

Our interpretations of the text can be true but not comprehensive- we have partial summaries.

How many Atlantic oceans? There’s one objective, coherent ocean.

How many ways are there to describe this ocean? Multiple. You can describe the ocean in terms of location, types of water, colour, etc. We can describe the ocean in multiple ways.

Partial and true interpretations of Genesis 1v1:
God created the heavens and the earth
There was a beginning in time
You can divide the creation into the heavens and the earth
There’s only one God

There are different ways of summarising the same reality.
Many disagreements happen over emphasis not heresy.

Angles on the Original Meaning
What are the main ways to make interpretative summaries on a passage?

Three types of analysis used when looking at OT passages:

Thematic: things that are of interest to the reader

Historical: what events are taking place in the time?

Literary: What was important to the writer?

1) Thematic Analysis is:

Looking at the Bible as a mirror that reflects back on the readers topics of concern
Eg looking at the Bible as a book of examples leads to treating Noah as a character to imitate.

TA often majors on minors.
Systematic Theology is another form of TA.
TA is a legitimate way of looking at scripture.
The writer of Hebrews uses thematic analysis to write Hebrews 11.

2) Historical Analysis is:

Treating the Bible as a window to look back onto past events.

HA takes two forms:
Factual form: looking at texts to gain information about a particular site or city.
Biblical Theology: A redemptive historical analysis. The Bible is a history of God saving people.

E.g. Gen 1
Factually? What does Gen 1 tell us about the events of the time

3) Literary Analysis is:

Keeping the form and content of the passage together not just using the bare data.
LA is used for looking at prominent themes. Hence it majors in majors and minors in the minors.

This course will tend to use the literary approach.
We’ll be looking at Genesis and Exodus as books for the Israelites.

Example of Literally Analysis using Genesis 12v10-20
Usual interpretations are dominated by questioning Abraham’s morals in lying.
Thematic and Historical approaches don’t being out the main point of the passage.

Literary Analysis by using a dramatic flow:
V10-11 Abraham travels to Egypt
V20 Egypt leaves Egypt

V11-16 Abraham and Sarah plan to lie and then are captured by Pharaoh
V18-19 Pharaoh releases Abram and Sarah

V17 God afflicts Pharaohs house with plagues
The Israelites knew that the God who sent plagues in Abram’s day sent plagues in there day. The narrative is written for the readers and so identifies with them.

Moses is talking about Abram in order to tell them about themselves.
God delivered Israel and Abram by intervening by plagues. Abram and Israelites leave with riches.

The Implications for the original audience:
‘God has done this before. We should trust in God’s call to Canaan because He led our Father Abram.’

Implication for us:
Am I in Egypt?
Have I made a mistake? No this is what God did for Abram and for Christ.

Genesis Through Joshua- Introduction: Focus in Old Testament Interpretation

There tend to be two extremes among Christians-

Popular Concerns:

Laypeople want to know what God is saying to them through a passage. They need to see the relevance and message of text to the people

Academic Concerns:

The opposite of popular concerns: They want to know about the meaning in the context of the time to the origin readers.

We need to know what the text is saying within the context and what the text says to our context.

The Text’s Full Value
Three stages are used to obtain the text’s full value:

1) Original Meaning
We have to be concerned with the original meaning of a text; that which is closet to the text itself.
We need to uncover and discover the original meaning.
What was the human writers intention as he gave a passage to the original audience?
What did Moses want the readers of Exodus to understand?
Our first priority is not the meaning of us today but the audience back then.

Example: Genesis 1
We search for contemporary meaning addressing the tension between Evolution and Creationism as soon as we read Genesis 1. But what did Moses want to communicate?
It was written to give insight into the perfect cosmic order of the universe.
Israelites say: ‘Why are we going to Canaan?’
Answer from Genesis: ‘Because Canaan is the ideal and good world as God wants it to be.’

2) Biblical Elaborations
2 Cor 5v17 is a Biblical elaboration of Genesis 1. It opens up the original text to our lives in terms of us being created as good in Christ.

2 Cor 4v17 is another Biblical elaboration on Genesis 1. God shines into our hearts like it shone in beauty at creation by the voice of God.

3) Legitimate Applications
Legitimately applying the text is the process of thinking of ways to express the text in order to change us today.

Example from Genesis 1 and 2 Cor 5v17:
Has God shone in my heart?
Is my nature and character evidencing goodness as the original creation was good?

Another application is that of creation and evolution but not the only application.

The Anchor of the Original Meaning
Why consider the original meaning?

Three in-clues to the original meaning:
1) Text
2) Author
3) Audience

1) Consider the conventional character of a text.
Language has meaning because we agree their meaning.
‘House’ means the same as a ‘Casa’.
We agree to make these sounds have the same meaning.

Come to the text asking: ‘What did it mean?’ at that time.

2) Consider the organic inspiration through the writer
God doesn’t eliminate the outlook and personalities of the writers. He incorporates them into the meaning.
Author and Text are used to communicate meaning.
The dictatorial view of inspiration and the romantic view of inspiration are both wrong.

We need to know why the original writers wrote what they wrote.

3) Consider divine accommodation
We need to understand the need of the audience.
God revealed in a way that the audience could understand.
The Bible is not God’s direct communication to us. We are overhearing a conversation between God and other men. This conversation is still very useful.