Friday, August 26, 2011


Let’s do some more on our survey of the Old Testament. In the past I did a commentary on the book of Genesis- so let’s just overview it briefly today.

Like I discussed the other day- the first 11 chapters cover a lot. You have the creation account, Noah’s flood and the origination of people groups [Tower of Babel- sometimes referred to as the table of nations].

Then in chapter 12- thru the end of Genesis- you read the story of one man and his family. God appears to Abraham- promises him a few things- and then the rest of Genesis covers this family.

In chapter 12 [and 15] God makes a covenant [promise] to Abraham. God says if you leave your home town- go to a place that I will show you [he goes by faith- doesn’t even know the final destination yet] then I will make you into a great nation- I will give you all the land and you will be a blessing to all nations.

The story continues with Abraham’s son Isaac- then to Jacob. Jacob’s name is changed to Israel- he has his 12 sons and they eventually go to Egypt and multiply.

Jacobs’s sons betray the favored son- Joseph- and they sell him into slavery. Eventually Joseph gains favor in Egypt and becomes the top administrator under Pharaoh. The land experiences a severe famine and the other boys who betrayed Joseph have to find food- in Egypt!

They go back to Egypt- they eventually have to confront Joseph and he forgives them and the entire family of Jacob [Israel] moves into Egypt [Goshen].

Genesis ends with the original promise of becoming a great nation only partly fulfilled. Though Abraham’s family did become huge- yet Abraham dies without possessing any land in the Promised Land- except his burial spot.

The book ends with some terrific promises that Jacob gives to the boys- this is a type of patriarchal blessing that the father passes on to the sons. A death bed blessing. And the sons go away with the final word from dad [a few ‘blessings’ are actually rebukes].

Okay- pretty simple- you just learned the whole book of Genesis- not that hard. Over viewing the bile like this is important [for those who want to learn] because it keeps the focus on the main thing.

Many people start out reading the bible with good intentions- and the first 2 books are interesting [Genesis, Exodus] but then you do get a little bogged down in Numbers and Leviticus and stuff.

If you get a basic overview of what’s going on- that God is ‘presenting’ Jesus to us- at an early stage- thru all these stories- then it helps to not get lost in the details.

Eventually these promises that God makes to Abraham get fulfilled- and the apostle Paul [and Peter- Acts] see the fulfilling of God blessing all nations thru Abrahams son- they say that this promise is today fulfilled thru Christ- one of the sons [down the line] of Abraham.

In Paul’s letter to the Galatians- chapter 3- he refers to this Abrahamic blessing and says it’s the promise of the Spirit being given to all who believe- that the blessing is being justified by faith thru Christ.

When we cover the 2nd book of the Pentateuch [Torah- the first 5 books of the Old Testament] Exodus- we will see the tables turn on the Jewish people- they multiply so much in Egypt that a new pharaoh will arise and begin persecuting the people.

This leads to the story of Moses- the Ten Commandments and the continued sags of ‘Abraham and his kids’. Okay- try and read some of these books the next week or so. Read a few of the key chapters I mentioned. I would also say read Genesis 22- the story of Abraham offering up his son Isaac on the altar.

This took place on a mountain called Moriah- which is the same mountain that God will offer his Son on many years later- Calvary.

Obviously this chapter is a key chapter in the story.

Okay- that’s it for now- and to all men friends in the North East- be careful. I’m praying for you all. Earthquakes- Hurricanes- yes it’s tough.

You are all in my prayers.

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