Bible Ministries International

Bible Studies

A series of verse by verse studies by Gunther von Harringa Sr

Act 17:11 These were more noble than those in Thessalonica, in that they received the word with all readiness of mind, and searched the scriptures daily, whether those things were so.

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JUDGES - PART 25

March 7, 2016


Good evening and welcome to Searching The Scriptures. This will be Part 25 in the Book of Judges, and we left off at the latter part of  Judges 1:7 in our last study and Lord willing, we want to continue on to verses 8-9: 


“And Adonibezek said, Threescore and ten kings, having their thumbs and their great toes cut off, gathered [their meat] under my table: as I have done, so God hath requited me.  And they brought him to Jerusalem, and there he died. {8} Now the children of Judah had fought against Jerusalem, and had taken it, and smitten it with the edge of the sword, and set the city on fire. {9} And afterward the children of Judah went down to fight against the Canaanites, that dwelt in the mountain, and in the south, and in the valley.” 


As I Have Done So God Hath Requited Me


The first phrase we want to look at is, “...as I have done [`asah:H6213], so God [’elohiym:H430] hath requited [shalam:H7999 - the root word for “peace,” (shalowm:H7999)] me,” which is made up of three words. Two of them - “as I have done” and “hath requited” appear together in 14 verses, as the following passages reveal, and helps to clarify yet another principle that we find in both the Old and New Testaments, namely, the principle of “sowing and reaping” as we read in Galatians 6:7-8,


“Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap. {8} For he that soweth to his flesh shall of the flesh reap corruption; but he that soweth to the Spirit shall of the Spirit reap life everlasting.”


These two terms in Judges 1:7b -  “as I have done” and “hath requited” -  surface in verse 12 of Deuteronomy 20:10-18, and are rendered as “and if it will make no peace” and “with thee, but will make.” This passage highlights two very important principles that God laid down for the Israelites prior to their entrance into the Promised Land -  and as we shall see as we continue our journey through this first chapter of Judges - one that was violated over and over again: “When thou comest nigh unto a city to fight against it, then proclaim peace unto it. {11} And it shall be, if it make thee answer of peace, and open unto thee, then it shall be, [that] all the people [that is] found therein shall be tributaries unto thee, and they shall serve thee. {12} And if it will make no peace [shalam:H7999] with thee, but will make [`asah:H6213] war against thee, then thou shalt besiege it: {13} And when the LORD thy God hath delivered it into thine hands, thou shalt smite every male thereof with the edge of the sword: {14} But the women, and the little ones, and the cattle, and all that is in the city, [even] all the spoil thereof, shalt thou take unto thyself; and thou shalt eat the spoil of thine enemies, which the LORD thy God hath given thee. {15} Thus shalt thou do unto all the cities [which are] very far off from thee, which [are] not of the cities of these nations. {16} But of the cities of these people, which the LORD thy God doth give thee [for] an inheritance, thou shalt save alive nothing that breatheth: {17} But thou shalt utterly destroy them; [namely], the Hittites, and the Amorites, the Canaanites, and the Perizzites, the Hivites, and the Jebusites; as the LORD thy God hath commanded thee: {18} That they teach you not to do after all their abominations, which they have done unto their gods; so should ye sin against the LORD your God.” 


In verse 19 of 1 Samuel 24:17-19, these two words are translated as “reward” and “for that thou hast done.” This is one of the numerous occasions, in which Davis had an opportunity to kill King Saul, who was bent on killing David, yet David, because of his fear for God, always let him go free. Notice Saul’s confession:  “And he said to David, Thou [art] more righteous than I: for thou hast rewarded me good, whereas I have rewarded thee evil. {18} And thou hast shewed this day how that thou hast dealt well with me: forasmuch as when the LORD had delivered me into thine hand, thou killedst me not. {19} For if a man find his enemy, will he let him go well away? wherefore the LORD reward [shalam:H7999] thee good for that thou hast done [`asah:H6213] unto me this day.”


In verse 6 of 2 Samuel 12:1-14 these terms are “and he shall restore” and “he did.”  David is is view again, but under very different circumstances: “And the LORD sent Nathan unto David. And he came unto him, and said unto him, There were two men in one city; the one rich, and the other poor. {2} The rich [man] had exceeding many flocks and herds: {3} But the poor [man] had nothing, save one little ewe lamb, which he had bought and nourished up: and it grew up together with him, and with his children; it did eat of his own meat, and drank of his own cup, and lay in his bosom, and was unto him as a daughter. {4} And there came a traveller unto the rich man, and he spared to take of his own flock and of his own herd, to dress for the wayfaring man that was come unto him; but took the poor man's lamb, and dressed it for the man that was come to him. {5} And David's anger was greatly kindled against the man; and he said to Nathan, [As] the LORD liveth, the man that hath done this [thing] shall surely die: {6} And he shall restore [shalam:H7999]  the lamb fourfold, because he did [`asah:H6213] this thing, and because he had no pity. {7} And Nathan said to David, Thou [art] the man. Thus saith the LORD God of Israel, I anointed thee king over Israel, and I delivered thee out of the hand of Saul; {8} And I gave thee thy master's house, and thy master's wives into thy bosom, and gave thee the house of Israel and of Judah; and if [that had been] too little, I would moreover have given unto thee such and such things. {9} Wherefore hast thou despised the commandment of the LORD, to do evil in his sight? thou hast killed Uriah the Hittite with the sword, and hast taken his wife [to be] thy wife, and hast slain him with the sword of the children of Ammon. {10} Now therefore the sword shall never depart from thine house; because thou hast despised me, and hast taken the wife of Uriah the Hittite to be thy wife. {11} Thus saith the LORD, Behold, I will raise up evil against thee out of thine own house, and I will take thy wives before thine eyes, and give [them] unto thy neighbour, and he shall lie with thy wives in the sight of this sun. {12} For thou didst [it] secretly: but I will do this thing before all Israel, and before the sun. {13} And David said unto Nathan, I have sinned against the LORD. And Nathan said unto David, The LORD also hath put away thy sin; thou shalt not die. {14} Howbeit, because by this deed thou hast given great occasion to the enemies of the LORD to blaspheme, the child also [that is] born unto thee shall surely die.”


In Jeremiah 32:18, these terms are rendered as “Thou shewest” and “and recompensest,” referring to how deals with the elect and non-elect respectively:Thou shewest  [`asah:H6213] lovingkindness unto thousands, and recompensest [shalam:H7999]  the iniquity of the fathers into the bosom of their children after them: the Great, the Mighty God, the LORD of hosts, [is] his name,”


On the other hand in Jeremiah 51:24, God decrees what He will to do Babylon (representing the world or the kingdom of Satan) after He had finished using it to bring judgment against Judah and Jerusalem (which spiritually symbolize the New Testament churches and denominations): And I will render [shalam:H7999] unto Babylon and to all the inhabitants of Chaldea all their evil that they have done [`asah:H6213] in Zion in your sight, saith the LORD.


Lastly, let’s look at a passage which will have bearing on verses 8-9 of Judges 1. It is Joshua 10:1, which recounts: “Now it came to pass, when Adonizedek king of Jerusalem had heard how Joshua had taken Ai, and had utterly destroyed it; as he had done [`asah:H6213] to Jericho and her king, so he had done [`asah:H6213] to Ai and her king; and how the inhabitants of Gibeon had made peace [shalam:H7999] with Israel, and were among them;” I’ll continue reading the context in Joshua 10: 2-5, and please note the name of the king of Jerusalem, Adonizedek - not to be confused with the king of Bezek - Adonibezek - which we have been discussing… “That they feared greatly, because Gibeon [was] a great city, as one of the royal cities, and because it [was] greater than Ai, and all the men thereof [were] mighty. {3} Wherefore Adonizedek king of Jerusalem sent unto Hoham king of Hebron, and unto Piram king of Jarmuth, and unto Japhia king of Lachish, and unto Debir king of Eglon, saying, {4} Come up unto me, and help me, that we may smite Gibeon: for it hath made peace with Joshua and with the children of Israel. {5} Therefore the five kings of the Amorites, the king of Jerusalem, the king of Hebron, the king of Jarmuth, the king of Lachish, the king of Eglon, gathered themselves together, and went up, they and all their hosts, and encamped before Gibeon, and made war against it.”


You might recall in lesson # 23 that these 5 Amorite kings were mentioned, since Joshua ended up defeating them, at the urgent request of the Gibeonites, since Adonizedek had summoned these other 4  kings in order to wage war against the inhabitants of Gibeon (a spiritual portrait of the elect - their mutual “neighbors,” who had craftily deceived the Israelites in pretending to come from a “far country” in order to sue for peace, (as Deuteronomy 20:10-11 had stipulated) and circumvent their certain death (according to Deuteronomy 20:15-16)


“ When thou comest nigh unto a city to fight against it, then proclaim peace unto it. {11} And it shall be, if it make thee answer of peace, and open unto thee, then it shall be, [that] all the people [that is] found therein shall be tributaries unto thee, and they shall serve thee… {15} Thus shalt thou do unto all the cities [which are] very far off from thee, which [are] not of the cities of these nations. {16} But of the cities of these people, which the LORD thy God doth give thee [for] an inheritance, thou shalt save alive nothing that breatheth:

 

In Joshua 10:24-26, Joshua had his captains put their feet on the necks of these kings to underscore their conquest (by God’s enabling) prior to killing them:


“And it came to pass, when they brought out those kings unto Joshua, that Joshua called for all the men of Israel, and said unto the captains of the men of war which went with him, Come near, put your feet upon the necks of these kings. And they came near, and put their feet upon the necks of them. {25} And Joshua said unto them, Fear not, nor be dismayed, be strong and of good courage: for thus shall the LORD do to all your enemies against whom ye fight. [lacham:H3898] {26} And afterward Joshua smote [nakah:H5221] them, and slew them, and hanged them on five trees: and they were hanging upon the trees until the evening.”


Judges 1:8


This is the backdrop to what follows in Jud 1:8, in which the Israelites took the king of Bezek, Adonibezek, to Jerusalem (i.e., “teaching of peace”) where he died; please note that the focus is still of the tribe of Judah - alluding as I have stated, to its pre-eminent Son - the Lord Jesus Christ, “...the Lion of the tribe of Judah…”:


“Now the children of Judah had fought [lacham:H3898]  against Jerusalem, and had taken [lakad:H3920] it, and smitten [nakah:H5221] it with the edge of the sword, and set the city on fire.”


Once again we encounter two words in this verse - “had fought” and “it, and smitten” -  that we noted previously in Judges 1:5 [“fought” (lacham:H3898) and “and they slew” (nakah:H5221)]:


“And they found Adonibezek in Bezek: and they fought [lacham:H3898] against him, and they slew [nakah:H5221] the Canaanites and the Perizzites.”


This is also the case in Joshua 10:25-26 where these same terms are rendered as : “against whom ye fight” (lacham:H3898)  and “smote” (nakah:H5221):


And Joshua said unto them, Fear not, nor be dismayed, be strong and of good courage: for thus shall the LORD do to all your enemies against whom ye fight. [lacham:H3898] {26} And afterward Joshua smote [nakah:H5221] them, and slew them, and hanged them on five trees: and they were hanging upon the trees until the evening.”


The Absolute Supremacy Of The Word of God


Before we examine Judges 1:8 more closely, I want to remind each of us of the absolute supremacy of the Word of God. It always accomplishes all that God intends as both Hebrews 4:12 and Isaiah 55:11 respectively insist - in the matter of salvation (during the day of salvation) and with regard to judgment: 


“For the word of God [is] quick, and powerful, and sharper than any twoedged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and [is] a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart.” 


“So shall my word be that goeth forth out of my mouth: it shall not return unto me void, but it shall accomplish that which I please, and it shall prosper [in the thing] whereto I sent it.”


The profound statement by Rahab the harlot in Jericho (who is in the bloodline of the Lord Jesus Christ Himself) in (pointing to the perfection of whatever is in view)  is worth repeating:


“And she said unto the men, I know that the LORD hath given you the land, and that your terror is fallen upon us, and that all the inhabitants of the land faint because of you. {10} For we have heard how the LORD dried up the water of the Red sea for you, when ye came out of Egypt; and what ye did unto the two kings of the Amorites, that [were] on the other side Jordan, Sihon and Og, whom ye utterly destroyed. {11} And as soon as we had heard [these things], our hearts did melt, neither did there remain any more courage in any man, because of you: for the LORD your God, he [is] God in heaven above, and in earth beneath.”


Lord willing, in our next study I would like to recap the specific verses that relate to the deliverance from Egypt, and the victories over Sihon and Og, since they also impact the continued conquests in the book of Judges.


JUDGES - PART 26

March 9, 2016


Welcome to Searching The Scriptures! This is Part 26 in the Book of Judges. As I mentioned at the close of our last study, I  would like to recap the specific verses that relate to the deliverance from Egypt, and the victories over Sihon and Og, since they also relate to the continued conquests in Joshua as well as in the Book of Judges.


Deliverance From Egypt


The deliverance from Egypt (a picture of being freed from bondage to sin and slavery to Satan - typified by Pharaoh) is one of the greatest historical parables in the Bible concerning salvation. We read the following in Exodus 15:1-19,


“Then sang Moses and the children of Israel this song unto the LORD, and spake, saying, I will sing unto the LORD, for he hath triumphed gloriously: the horse and his rider hath he thrown into the sea. {2} The LORD [is] my strength and song, and he is become my salvation: he [is] my God, and I will prepare him an habitation; my father's God, and I will exalt him. {3} The LORD [is] a man of war: the LORD [is] his name. {4} Pharaoh's chariots and his host hath he cast into the sea: his chosen captains also are drowned in the Red sea. {5} The depths have covered them: they sank into the bottom as a stone. {6} Thy right hand, O LORD, is become glorious in power: thy right hand, O LORD, hath dashed in pieces the enemy. {7} And in the greatness of thine excellency thou hast overthrown them that rose up against thee: thou sentest forth thy wrath, [which] consumed them as stubble. {8} And with the blast of thy nostrils the waters were gathered together, the floods stood upright as an heap, [and] the depths were congealed in the heart of the sea. {9} The enemy said, I will pursue, I will overtake, I will divide the spoil; my lust shall be satisfied upon them; I will draw my sword, my hand shall destroy them. {10} Thou didst blow with thy wind, the sea covered them: they sank as lead in the mighty waters. {11} Who [is] like unto thee, O LORD, among the gods? who [is] like thee, glorious in holiness, fearful [in] praises, doing wonders? {12} Thou stretchedst out thy right hand, the earth swallowed them. {13} Thou in thy mercy hast led forth the people [which] thou hast redeemed: thou hast guided [them] in thy strength unto thy holy habitation. {14} The people shall hear, [and] be afraid: sorrow shall take hold on the inhabitants of Palestina. {15} Then the dukes of Edom shall be amazed; the mighty men of Moab, trembling shall take hold upon them; all the inhabitants of Canaan shall melt away. {16} Fear and dread shall fall upon them; by the greatness of thine arm they shall be [as] still as a stone; till thy people pass over, O LORD, till the people pass over, [which] thou hast purchased. {17} Thou shalt bring them in, and plant them in the mountain of thine inheritance, [in] the place, O LORD, [which] thou hast made for thee to dwell in, [in] the Sanctuary, O Lord, [which] thy hands have established. {18} The LORD shall reign for ever and ever. {19} For the horse of Pharaoh went in with his chariots and with his horsemen into the sea, and the LORD brought again the waters of the sea upon them; but the children of Israel went on dry [land] in the midst of the sea.”


On The Other Side Of Jordan


Deuteronomy 2:24-25 reveals the Israelites’ victories over Sihon and Og:  “Rise ye up, take your journey, and pass over the river Arnon: behold, I have given into thine hand Sihon the Amorite, king of Heshbon, and his land: begin to possess [it], and contend with him in battle. {25} This day will I begin to put the dread of thee and the fear of thee upon the nations [that are] under the whole heaven, who shall hear report of thee, and shall tremble, and be in anguish because of thee… {3:1-6} “Then we turned, and went up the way to Bashan: and Og the king of Bashan came out against us, he and all his people, to battle at Edrei. {2} And the LORD said unto me, Fear him not: for I will deliver him, and all his people, and his land, into thy hand; and thou shalt do unto him as thou didst unto Sihon king of the Amorites, which dwelt at Heshbon. {3} So the LORD our God delivered into our hands Og also, the king of Bashan, and all his people: and we smote him until none was left to him remaining. {4} And we took all his cities at that time, there was not a city which we took not from them, threescore cities, all the region of Argob, the kingdom of Og in Bashan. {5} All these cities [were] fenced with high walls, gates, and bars; beside unwalled towns a great many. {6} And we utterly destroyed them, as we did unto Sihon king of Heshbon, utterly destroying the men, women, and children, of every city.”


In The Land Of Canaan


And in Joshua 12:7-24 God continues to chronicles their defeat over 31 kings:  “And these [are] the kings of the country which Joshua and the children of Israel smote on this side Jordan on the west, from Baalgad in the valley of Lebanon even unto the mount Halak, that goeth up to Seir; which Joshua gave unto the tribes of Israel [for] a possession according to their divisions; {8} In the mountains, and in the valleys, and in the plains, and in the springs, and in the wilderness, and in the south country; the Hittites, the Amorites, and the Canaanites, the Perizzites, the Hivites, and the Jebusites: {9} The king of Jericho, one; the king of Ai, which [is] beside Bethel, one; {10} The king of Jerusalem, one; the king of Hebron, one; {11} The king of Jarmuth, one; the king of Lachish, one; {12} The king of Eglon, one; the king of Gezer, one; {13} The king of Debir, one; the king of Geder, one; {14} The king of Hormah, one; the king of Arad, one; {15} The king of Libnah, one; the king of Adullam, one; {16} The king of Makkedah, one; the king of Bethel, one; {17} The king of Tappuah, one; the king of Hepher, one; {18} The king of Aphek, one; the king of Lasharon, one; {19} The king of Madon, one; the king of Hazor, one; {20} The king of Shimronmeron, one; the king of Achshaph, one; {21} The king of Taanach, one; the king of Megiddo, one; {22} The king of Kedesh, one; the king of Jokneam of Carmel, one; {23} The king of Dor in the coast of Dor, one; the king of the nations of Gilgal, one; {24} The king of Tirzah, one: all the kings thirty and one.


And so we see the expansion of Israel - the external representation of the kingdom of God on earth - in the land of Canaan, “by little and little” as God had commanded them. 


Judges 1:8 (Cont.)


Getting back to Judges 1, we left off at the latter part of verse 8, which declares: 


“Now the children of Judah had fought against Jerusalem, and had taken it, and smitten it with the edge [peh:H6310] of the sword [chereb:H2719], and set [shalach:H7971] the city [`iyr:H5892] on fire [’esh:H794].”


Here in Judges 1:8 God gives additional details that we did not find in Joshua 10, where we learned that the Israelites had defeated the king of Jerusalem (along with 4 other Amorite kings as well) -  namely they came against it with “the edge of the sword” and “set the city on fire.” The first expression, “with the edge of the sword,” is comprised of two words - “it with the edge” (peh:H6310) and “of the sword” (chereb:H2719) is found in 37 places and with the exception of perhaps two citations (and even these relate to judgment in part) always in connection with destruction; these are Job 5:15 (regarding God’s elect) and Isaiah 49:2 (regarding the Lord Jesus) respectively: 


“With The Edge Of The Sword”


“But he saveth the poor from the sword [chereb:H2719], from their mouth [peh:H6310], and from the hand of the mighty.”


“And he hath made my mouth [peh:H6310]  like a sharp sword [chereb:H2719]; in the shadow of his hand hath he hid me, and made me a polished shaft; in his quiver hath he hid me;”


These two terms - “it with the edge” (peh:H6310) and “of the sword” (chereb:H2719) - also appear in the following passages in the Book of Judges (besides Judges 1:8), which Lord willing, we will develop, if God allows, once we get there:


Judges 1:25 states, “And when he shewed them the entrance into the city, they smote the city with the edge [peh:H6310] of the sword [chereb:H2719]; but they let go the man and all his family.”


Judges 4:15-16 reveal: “And the LORD discomfited Sisera, and all [his] chariots, and all [his] host, with the edge [peh:H6310] of the sword [chereb:H2719] before Barak; so that Sisera lighted down off [his] chariot, and fled away on his feet. {16} But Barak pursued after the chariots, and after the host, unto Harosheth of the Gentiles: and all the host of Sisera fell upon the edge [peh:H6310] of the sword [chereb:H2719]; [and] there was not a man left.”


Judges 18:27 asserts, “And they took [the things] which Micah had made, and the priest which he had, and came unto Laish, unto a people [that were] at quiet and secure: and they smote them with the edge [peh:H6310] of the sword [chereb:H2719], and burnt the city with fire.”


Judges 20:37 and 48 explain:  “And the liers in wait hasted, and rushed upon Gibeah; and the liers in wait drew [themselves] along, and smote all the city with the edge [peh:H6310] of the sword [chereb:H2719]. ... {48} And the men of Israel turned again upon the children of Benjamin, and smote them with the edge [peh:H6310] of the sword [chereb:H2719], as well the men of [every] city, as the beast, and all that came to hand: also they set on fire all the cities that they came to.”


Judges 21:10 adds, “And the congregation sent thither twelve thousand men of the valiantest, and commanded them, saying, Go and smite the inhabitants of Jabeshgilead with the edge [peh:H6310] of the sword [chereb:H2719], with the women and the children.”


“And Set The City On Fire”


The last phrase in Judges 1:8 is made up of three words - “...and set [shalach:H7971] the city [`iyr:H5892] on fire [’esh:H794]” and these three expressions are only found in two passages, besides Jud 1:8,


Judges 20:48 also contains the first phrase, “with the edge of the sword” as well as the latter, “and set the city on fire.” By God’s grace, if we get there someday, we will discover that this chapter deals with the 11 tribes’ retaliation against the tribe of Benjamin, who were responsible for the abuse and murder of the concubine in Judges 19 - a dramatic representation and historical parable concerning the end of the church age: “And the men of Israel turned again upon the children of Benjamin, and smote them with the edge of the sword, as well the men of [every] city [`iyr:H5892], as the beast, and all that came to hand: also they set [shalach:H7971] on fire [’esh:H794] all the cities [`iyr:H5892] that they came to.”


The theme of Hosea 8:14 and the entire book of Hosea paints the same picture, but uses the marriage of Hosea to a harlot to symbolize Israel’s spiritual idolatry and adultery against her Husband, God Almightly: “For Israel hath forgotten his Maker, and buildeth temples; and Judah hath multiplied fenced cities [`iyr:H5892]: but I will send [shalach:H7971] a fire [’esh:H794]  upon his cities [`iyr:H5892], and it shall devour the palaces thereof.”


Judges 1:9


This brings so to Judges 1:9, which states: 


“And afterward the children of Judah went down to fight against the Canaanites, that dwelt in the mountain, and in the south, and in the valley.”


Lord willing, in our next study we will consider this verse, as we have come to the end of today’s program.






JUDGES - PART 27

March 11, 2016


Welcome to Searching The Scriptures! This is Part 27 in the Book of Judges, and we have just finished with Judges 1:8, which states,


“Now the children of Judah had fought against Jerusalem, and had taken it, and smitten it with the edge of the sword, and set the city on fire.”

 

Starting from Judges 1:8 until Judges 3:9 we find a recapitulation of the first 40-year period in the Book of Judges; this initial period was from 1407 BC - 1367 BC, as Mr. Camping pointed out in his “Chronology of the Judges” in both Adam When? and Time Has An End.  He also stated (pg. 72, Adam When?) that during this time, Joshua spearheaded the conquest of the land during the first 7 years (1407 BC - 1400 BC), according to the following passages:


Joshua 14:7-10 states with regard to Caleb: Forty years [40] old [was] I when Moses the servant of the LORD sent me from Kadeshbarnea to espy out the land; and I brought him word again as [it was] in mine heart. {8} Nevertheless my brethren that went up with me made the heart of the people melt: but I wholly followed the LORD my God. {9} And Moses sware on that day, saying, Surely the land whereon thy feet have trodden shall be thine inheritance, and thy children's for ever, because thou hast wholly followed the LORD my God. {10} And now, behold, the LORD hath kept me alive, as he said, these forty and five years [45], even since the LORD spake this word unto Moses, while [the children of] Israel wandered in the wilderness: and now, lo, I [am] this day fourscore and five [85] years old.”  


And Deuteronomy 2:14 reveals,“And the space in which we came from Kadeshbarnea [1445 BC], until we were come over the brook Zered, [was] thirty and eight [38] years; until all the generation of the men of war were wasted out from among the host, as the LORD sware unto them.”


During this first period we also learn that Othniel ruled as the judge, who delivered the Israelites from their 8-year captivity to the king of Mesopotamia, according to verses 8-9 of Judges 3:7-9,


“And the children of Israel did evil in the sight of the LORD, and forgat the LORD their God, and served Baalim and the groves. {8} Therefore the anger of the LORD was hot against Israel, and he sold them into the hand of Chushanrishathaim king of Mesopotamia: and the children of Israel served Chushanrishathaim eight years. {9} And when the children of Israel cried unto the LORD, the LORD raised up a deliverer to the children of Israel, who delivered them, [even] Othniel the son of Kenaz, Caleb's younger brother.


You might also recall that because of Israel’s rebellion in not driving out all the inhabitants of the land quickly as God has stipulated, He used them as a “testing” program against Israel, as was discussed in some of our earlier lessons in this study, and so they had to live - very much like believers in our present time who are being similarly tried - in the presence of their enemies.


Judges 1:9-15


We read in Judges 1:9-15, “And afterward the children of Judah went down to fight against the Canaanites, that dwelt in the mountain [har:H2022], and in the south [negeb:H5045], and in the valley [shephelah:H8219]. {10} And Judah went against the Canaanites that dwelt in Hebron: (now the name of Hebron before [was] Kirjatharba:) and they slew Sheshai, and Ahiman, and Talmai. {11} And from thence he went against the inhabitants of Debir: and the name of Debir before [was] Kirjathsepher: {12} And Caleb said, He that smiteth Kirjathsepher, and taketh it, to him will I give Achsah my daughter to wife. {13} And Othniel the son of Kenaz, Caleb's younger brother, took it: and he gave him Achsah his daughter to wife. {14} And it came to pass, when she came [to him], that she moved him to ask of her father a field: and she lighted from off [her] ass; and Caleb said unto her, What wilt thou? {15} And she said unto him, Give me a blessing: for thou hast given me a south land; give me also springs of water. And Caleb gave her the upper springs and the nether springs.”


“In The Mountain, And In The South, And In The Valley” 


Once again in verse 9, God’s focus is on the tribe of Judah (a portrait of Christ - “the Lion of the tribe of Judah”) as they fight the Canaanites (representing the non-elect) on three fronts - “in the mountain” (har:H2022), “and in the south” (negeb:H5045), and “and in the valley” (shephelah:H8219). These same three fronts also appear in Joshua 12:7-8; in our last study I read through verse 24, which lists all thirty-one Canaanite kings whose countries Joshua (picturing the Lord Jesus Christ) and the Israelites (typifying God’s elect) vanquished:


Joshua 12:7-8 declares, “And these [are] the kings of the country which Joshua and the children of Israel smote on this side Jordan on the west, from Baalgad in the valley of Lebanon even unto the mount Halak, that goeth up to Seir; which Joshua gave unto the tribes of Israel [for] a possession according to their divisions; {8} In the mountains [har:H2022], and in the valleys [shephelah:H8219], and in the plains, and in the springs, and in the wilderness, and in the south country [negeb:H5045]; the Hittites, the Amorites, and the Canaanites, the Perizzites, the Hivites, and the Jebusites:”


The utter annihilation of these kings and their cities as Joshua 11:12, 15-16, and 19-20 describe, typify the fate of all the non-elect, in which these same terms are repeated twice; please note the significance of verse 20 as well, reminding us of God hardening Pharaoh’s heart in the same manner to accomplish God’s purposes: 


“And all the cities of those kings, and all the kings of them, did Joshua take, and smote them with the edge of the sword, [and] he utterly destroyed them, as Moses the servant of the LORD commanded. ... {15} As the LORD commanded Moses his servant, so did Moses command Joshua, and so did Joshua; he left nothing undone of all that the LORD commanded Moses. {16} So Joshua took all that land, the hills [har:H2022], and all the south country [negeb:H5045], and all the land of Goshen, and the valley [shephelah:H8219], and the plain, and the mountain [har:H2022] of Israel, and the valley [shephelah:H8219] of the same; ... {19} There was not a city that made peace with the children of Israel, save the Hivites the inhabitants of Gibeon: all [other] they took in battle. {20} For it was of the LORD to harden their hearts, that they should come against Israel in battle, that he might destroy them utterly, [and] that they might have no favour, but that he might destroy them, as the LORD commanded Moses.


Unusual Usage Of The Term “Mountain” (Or “Hill”) [har:H2022]


The term “the hills” and “the mountain” (har:H2022)  in Joshua 11:16 is used in a very unusual way in Psalm 75. It appears 545 times in the Old Testament as “mountain,” “mount,” “hill,” and “hill country.”  But only in Psalm 75:6, is it rendered as “promotion,” [in combination with the Hebrew verb ruwm (H7311)] and relates to what we have been discussing besides characterizing our current “day of judgment.”  I’ll read the entire Psalm for the sake of the context:


“[To the chief Musician, Altaschith, A Psalm [or] Song of Asaph.] Unto thee, O God, do we give thanks, [unto thee] do we give thanks: for [that] thy name is near thy wondrous works declare. {2} When I shall receive the congregation I will judge uprightly. {3} The earth and all the inhabitants thereof are dissolved: I bear up the pillars of it. Selah. {4} I said unto the fools, Deal not foolishly: and to the wicked, Lift not up the horn: {5} Lift not up your horn on high: speak [not with] a stiff neck. {6} For promotion [ruwm:H7311/har:H2022] [cometh] neither from the east, nor from the west, nor from the south. {7} But God [is] the judge: he putteth down one, and setteth up another. {8} For in the hand of the LORD [there is] a cup, and the wine is red; it is full of mixture; and he poureth out of the same: but the dregs thereof, all the wicked of the earth shall wring [them] out, [and] drink [them]. {9} But I will declare for ever; I will sing praises to the God of Jacob. {10} All the horns of the wicked also will I cut off; [but] the horns of the righteous shall be exalted.”


Judah’s Inheritance


There is a parallel passage to Judges 1:10-15 found in Joshua 15:14-19, respectively, which among other things, is a chapter that lists the borders and cities allocated to the tribe of Judah: 


“And Judah went against the Canaanites that dwelt in Hebron: (now the name of Hebron before [was] Kirjatharba:) and they slew Sheshai, and Ahiman, and Talmai. {11} And from thence he went against the inhabitants of Debir: and the name of Debir before [was] Kirjathsepher: {12} And Caleb said, He that smiteth Kirjathsepher, and taketh it, to him will I give Achsah my daughter to wife. {13} And Othniel the son of Kenaz, Caleb's younger brother, took it: and he gave him Achsah his daughter to wife. {14} And it came to pass, when she came [to him], that she moved him to ask of her father a field: and she lighted from off [her] ass; and Caleb said unto her, What wilt thou? {15} And she said unto him, Give [yahab:H3051] me a blessing: for thou hast given me a south land; give me also springs of water. And Caleb gave her the upper springs and the nether springs.”


“And Caleb drove thence the three sons of Anak, Sheshai, and Ahiman, and Talmai, the children of Anak. {15} And he went up thence to the inhabitants of Debir: and the name of Debir before [was] Kirjathsepher. {16} And Caleb said, He that smiteth Kirjathsepher, and taketh it, to him will I give Achsah my daughter to wife. {17} And Othniel the son of Kenaz, the brother of Caleb, took it: and he gave him Achsah his daughter to wife. {18} And it came to pass, as she came [unto him], that she moved him to ask of her father a field: and she lighted off [her] ass; and Caleb said unto her, What wouldest thou? {19} Who answered, Give [nathan:H5414] me a blessing; for thou hast given me a south land; give me also springs of water. And he gave her the upper springs, and the nether springs.”


In these two accounts we find two apparently contradictory statements regarding “Sheshai, and Ahiman, and Talmai”: in Judges 1:9 it says that the tribe of Judah “slew” (or killed) these men., whereas in Joshua 15:14 it states that Caleb [of the tribe of Judah] “drove” them away. Since we know that there are no contradictions in the Bible, both accounts have to be accurate. It could be that Caleb himself drove them out, and then the other members of the tribe killed them. There is one other discrepancy as far as I could tell, regarding the individual Hebrew words that God employs in both these accounts. The word translated “give” in Judges 1:15 and in Joshua 15:19 are different; in the former it is the word yahab (H3051); in the latter it is rendered by a term that we have seen before - nathan (H5414).


Caleb, Achsah, and Othniel, And The Conquest Of Debir (Or Kirjathsepher) - A Historical Parable 


Both in Judges 1:11-15 and Joshua 15:15-19 we read about the conquest of Debir [Debiyr:H1688 - same as -  debiyr:H1687, “oracle” (or “Holy of Holies”) from dabar (H1696), or “word”] (formerly Kirjathsepher or Kirjathsannah - meaning, “city of the book”) by Othniel (`Othniy’el:H6274 - “lion of God”) who accepted Caleb’s challenge that whoever conquered the city would win the hand of his daughter, Achsah, in marriage, followed by her intriguing request. Let’s examine this short historical parable more closely which is virtually identical in both Joshua 15 as well as in Judges 1. 


Othniel Took (lakad:H3929) “The Holy of Holies”/ “City Of The Book”


The term “and taketh”/“took” (lakad:H3920) in both Judges 1:12-13 and Joshua 15:16-17 referring to Othniel’s capture of the city is used frequently in the same manner throughout the Old Testament, as the subsequent verses testify: 


It was found in Judges 1:8 as “and had taken”: “Now the children of Judah had fought against Jerusalem, and had taken [lakad:H3820] it, and smitten it with the edge of the sword, and set the city on fire.”


Speaking of the Israelites’ victories, and how God helped them at every turn, verse 25 of Nehemiah 9:23-25 records part of  Nehemiah’s prayer, in which this same word is translated as “And they took”:  “Their children also multipliedst thou as the stars of heaven, and broughtest them into the land, concerning which thou hadst promised to their fathers, that they should go in to possess [it]. {24} So the children went in and possessed the land, and thou subduedst before them the inhabitants of the land, the Canaanites, and gavest them into their hands, with their kings, and the people of the land, that they might do with them as they would. {25} And they took [lakad:H3820]  strong cities, and a fat land, and possessed houses full of all goods, wells digged, vineyards, and oliveyards, and fruit trees in abundance: so they did eat, and were filled, and became fat, and delighted themselves in thy great goodness.”


Lastly, speaking of our day, Isaiah 24:18 pronounces: “And it shall come to pass, [that] he who fleeth from the noise of the fear shall fall into the pit; and he that cometh up out of the midst of the pit shall be taken [lakad:H3920] in the snare: for the windows from on high are open, and the foundations of the earth do shake.”


Well, Lord willing, we will have to continue our exploration of this passage in our next study, as we have run out of time. 







JUDGES - PART 28

March 21, 2016


Welcome to Searching The Scriptures! This is Part 28 in the Book of Judges. We left off at Judges 1:12-15 in our previous study, which, as I mentioned, is a historical parable:


“And Caleb said, He that smiteth Kirjathsepher [or “city of the book”], and taketh it, to him will I give Achsah [“anklet”] my daughter to wife. {13} And Othniel [Caleb’s nephew -“lion of God”] the son of Kenaz [“hunter”], Caleb's [“dog”] younger brother, took it: and he gave him Achsah his daughter to wife. {14} And it came to pass, when she came [bow’:H935][to him - Othniel?]that she moved  him [cuwth:H5496][Othniel?] to ask of her father [Caleb] a field: and she lighted from off [her] ass; and Caleb said unto her, What wilt thou? {15} And she said unto him, Give me a blessing: for thou hast given me a south land; give me also springs of water. And Caleb gave her the upper springs and the nether springs.


He That That Smiteth Kirjathsepher/Kirjathsannah (Debir)


Towards the end of our last study we began looking at the the word “taketh” (lakad:H3920) in Judges 1:12, but I did not develop the term “He that smiteth” (nakah:H5221) in this particular spiritual context - even though we encountered this term in Judges 1:4, 5, 8, and 10 -  and we will continue to see it employed over and over again in the book of Judges. Let’s consider this more closely, keeping in mind that Kirjathsepher or Kirjathsannah (H7158) (as it is referred to once) was the former (compound) name of this city signifying “city of the book,”  while its present name, in the historical context, is Debir (Debiyr:H1688) which is identically spelled as “oracle” (referring to the “holy of holies”) (debiyr:H1687), which is always translated this way in the 16 times in which it appears. So how can we understand the parabolic meaning that God has hidden in this passage with regard to the “smiting” or “killing” of the “city of the book,” or “oracle” ? We read, for example, in verse 2 of  Psalm 48:1-3, where the same word for “city” (qiryah:H7151) is used [incidentally, the more common word for “city” is utilized in verse 1 - (`iyr:H5892)].


Psalm 48:1-3, “[A Song [and] Psalm for the sons of Korah.] Great [is] the LORD, and greatly to be praised in the city [`iyr:H5892] of our God, [in] the mountain of his holiness. {2} Beautiful for situation, the joy of the whole earth, [is] mount Zion, [on] the sides of the north, the city [qiryah:H7151] of the great King. {3} God is known in her palaces for a refuge.” 


In this context, the “city of God” or “Temple of God” (as it is described in other places) that is in view is Mount Zion or Jerusalem which typifies the kingdom of God (either externally or the body of Christ) - which is altogether related to the Lord Jesus Christ, as His faith and atonement (before the foundation of the world) provided the only entrance into that city for all the elect; Christ is also typified by the “holy of holies,” or “oracle;” you might also recall how the “veil” of the Temple (separating the “holy of holies” from the rest of the Temple is likened to His “flesh” as Hebrews 10:19-20 underscores,


“Having therefore, brethren, boldness to enter into the holiest by the blood of Jesus, {20} By a new and living way, which he hath consecrated for us, through the veil, that is to say, his flesh;”


We see this same imagery in view in verse 11 (even though this is an entirely different word) of Lamentations 3:1-19, with the statement: “[He hath] ...pulled me in pieces…”:


“I [am] the man [that] hath seen affliction by the rod of his wrath. {2} He hath led me, and brought [me into] darkness, but not [into] light. {3} Surely against me is he turned; he turneth his hand [against me] all the day. {4} My flesh and my skin hath he made old; he hath broken my bones. {5} He hath builded against me, and compassed [me] with gall and travail. {6} He hath set me in dark places, as [they that be] dead of old. {7} He hath hedged me about, that I cannot get out: he hath made my chain heavy. {8} Also when I cry and shout, he shutteth out my prayer. {9} He hath inclosed my ways with hewn stone, he hath made my paths crooked. {10} He [was] unto me [as] a bear lying in wait, [and as] a lion in secret places. {11} He hath turned aside my ways, and pulled me in pieces [pashach:H6582]: he hath made me desolate. {12} He hath bent his bow, and set me as a mark for the arrow. {13} He hath caused the arrows of his quiver to enter into my reins. {14} I was a derision to all my people; [and] their song all the day. {15} He hath filled me with bitterness, he hath made me drunken with wormwood. {16} He hath also broken my teeth with gravel stones, he hath covered me with ashes. {17} And thou hast removed my soul far off from peace: I forgat prosperity. {18} And I said, My strength and my hope is perished from the LORD: {19} Remembering mine affliction and my misery, the wormwood and the gall. {20} My soul hath [them] still in remembrance, and is humbled in me.”


Getting back to Othniel (“lion of God”) who obeyed Caleb’s command to “smite” Kirjathsepher (“city of the book”) or Debir [“oracle” (“holy of holies,” i.e. Christ)] we are reminded of another “smiting” that took place in Exodus 17:6 and Numbers 20:11. Here we see Moses disobediently striking the Rock (Christ) twice with the rod (symbolizing the Word of God). Nonetheless, through this incident, God is indicating that the Atonement took place in actuality “from the foundation of the world,” and then again in 33 AD as a “tableau” or demonstration:


“ Behold, I will stand before thee there upon the rock in Horeb; and thou shalt smite [nakah:H5221] the rock, and there shall come water out of it, that the people may drink. And Moses did so in the sight of the elders of Israel.”


“And Moses lifted up his hand, and with his rod he smote [nakah:H5221] the rock twice: and the water came out abundantly, and the congregation drank, and their beasts [also].”


In the historical context, Othniel struck and took Kirjathsepher, as Caleb had ordered - in accordance with what God had previously stipulated in Deuteronomy 7:1-2, where this same word “thou shalt smite” surfaces in verse 2:


“When the LORD thy God shall bring thee into the land whither thou goest to possess it, and hath cast out many nations before thee, the Hittites, and the Girgashites, and the Amorites, and the Canaanites, and the Perizzites, and the Hivites, and the Jebusites, seven nations greater and mightier than thou; {2} And when the LORD thy God shall deliver them before thee; thou shalt smite [nakah:H5221] them, [and] utterly destroy them; thou shalt make no covenant with them, nor shew mercy unto them:”


Who Does Caleb Represent?


It would appear that Caleb (Kaleb:H3612) in this historical parable is a portrait of God the Father. His name signifies a “dog,” which is spelled the same (keleb:H3611) and immediately we think of an unclean animal, which at first blush is confusing. However, God also uses “dogs” in the judgment process; furthermore, His divine nature exemplifies both judgment as well as mercy. Consider the following illustrations of how God uses the word “dog” as an instrument of retribution:


In verse 5 of Judges 7:4-7 we read of God using Gideon (the 5th judge and a picture of Christ) and his men (representing true believers according to 1 Corinthians 6:2 and other verses) to bring judgment against the Midianites: “And the LORD said unto Gideon, The people [are] yet [too] many; bring them down unto the water, and I will try them for thee there: and it shall be, [that] of whom I say unto thee, This shall go with thee, the same shall go with thee; and of whomsoever I say unto thee, This shall not go with thee, the same shall not go. {5} So he brought down the people unto the water: and the LORD said unto Gideon, Every one that lappeth of the water with his tongue, as a dog [keleb:H3611] lappeth, him shalt thou set by himself; likewise every one that boweth down upon his knees to drink. {6} And the number of them that lapped, [putting] their hand to their mouth, were three hundred men: but all the rest of the people bowed down upon their knees to drink water. {7} And the LORD said unto Gideon, By the three hundred men that lapped will I save you, and deliver the Midianites into thine hand: and let all the [other] people go every man unto his place.”


Similarly, Jeremiah 15:5 also underscores this truth: “And I will appoint over them four kinds, saith the LORD: the sword to slay, and the dogs [keleb:H3611] to tear, and the fowls of the heaven, and the beasts of the earth, to devour and destroy.”


And Psalm 68:1-2, 21 and 23 further corroborate this: “[To the chief Musician, A Psalm [or] Song of David.] Let God arise, let his enemies be scattered: let them also that hate him flee before him. {2} As smoke is driven away, [so] drive [them] away: as wax melteth before the fire, [so] let the wicked perish at the presence of God. ... {21} But God shall wound the head of his enemies, [and] the hairy scalp of such an one as goeth on still in his trespasses...{23} That thy foot may be dipped in the blood of [thine] enemies, [and] the tongue of thy dogs [keleb:H3611] in the same.”


Who Does Othniel Represent?


Othniel (“lion of God”) is the one that “smites” Kirjathsepher (“city of the book”) or Debir (“oracle” or “holy of holies”) so he must typify the Word of God - the “Sword of the LORD.” God can also be represented as a “lion;” in fact Christ is called “the Lion of the tribe of Judah” (Revelation 5:5) Very often the word for “smite” (nakah:H5221) is used in connection with “the edge (peh:H6310) of the sword (chereb:H2719).” You might recall that we took note of these two words in Judges 1:8, and they also appear together in 7 other verses in the Book of Judges:


“Now the children of Judah had fought against Jerusalem, and had taken it, and smitten it with the edge [peh:H6310] of the sword [chereb:H2719], and set the city on fire.”


As a result of  Othniel conquering Kirjathsepher, he is given Caleb’s daughter, Achsah (`Akcah:H5915) to wife. 


Who Does Achsah Represent?


Who then does Achsah (`Akcah:H5915) typify? H5915 is only used 5 times within the historical context, but it is derived from a root word (`ekec:H5914), which is only found in two interesting places:


In Proverbs 7:22 it is rendered “of the stocks;” this chapter deals with keeping God’s law, and highlights a foolish young young man who is enticed by a harlot, and as a result is destroyed. Spiritually speaking, the “harlot” typifies the churches and denominations that God abandoned as of May 21, 1988, when judgment commenced at the “house of God,” according to 1 Peter 4:17 and Jeremiah 25:29:  “He goeth after her straightway, as an ox goeth to the slaughter, or as a fool to the correction of the stocks;” [`ekec:H5914]


This is further emphasized by Isaiah 3:18, where this same term is rendered,  “In that day the Lord will take away the bravery of [their] tinkling ornaments [`ekec:H5914] [about their feet], and [their] cauls, and [their] round tires like the moon,”


Again, we see that these verses are speaking of national Israel - who typifies the churches and denominations that have come under the wrath of God. 


Well, we have run out of time today, so we will have to pick this up in our next study, Lord willing.






JUDGES - PART 29

March 23, 2016


Welcome to Searching The Scriptures! This is Part 29 in the Book of Judges, and we are continuing our examination of the historical parable found in Judges 1:12-15,


“And Caleb said, He that smiteth Kirjathsepher, and taketh it, to him will I give Achsah my daughter to wife. {13} And Othniel, the son of Kenaz, Caleb's younger brother, took it: and he gave him Achsah his daughter to wife. {14} And it came to pass, when she came [bow’:H935][to him] that she moved  him [cuwth:H5496] to ask of her father  a field: and she lighted from off [her] ass; and Caleb said unto her, What wilt thou? {15} And she said unto him, Give me a blessing: for thou hast given me a south land; give me also springs of water. And Caleb gave her the upper springs and the nether springs.


Who Does Achsah Represent (Cont.)?


We ended our last study looking at two verses in which the root word (`ekec:H5914) for Achsah (`Akcah:H5915) was found. These passages are Proverbs 7:22 and Isaiah 3:18,


Proverbs 7:22 reveals, “He goeth after her [the “harlot”] straightway, as an ox goeth to the slaughter, or as a fool to the correction of the stocks;” [`ekec:H5914]


And in Isaiah 3:18 we read:  “In that day the Lord will take away the bravery of [their] tinkling ornaments [`ekec:H5914] [about their feet], and [their] cauls, and [their] round tires like the moon,”


H5914, in turn, has a root or parent word, spelled the same as H5914 which is only found in one citation - in this very same chapter - in Isaiah 3:16,


“Moreover the LORD saith, Because the daughters of Zion are haughty, and walk with stretched forth necks and wanton eyes, walking and mincing [as] they go, and making a tinkling [`akac:H5913] with their feet:”


As you can see in both Proverbs 7 and Isaiah 3, the focus is on God’s judgment which fell on the institutional churches and denominations, symbolized by a “harlot,” which the “daughters of Zion” have become. And this is now associated with Achsah, Othniel’s wife, whose name signifies these “tinkling ornaments;”  in other words, the institutional churches and denominations have really become spiritual “stocks,” designed to confine one’s feet (or “will”) and bring its members under the wrath of God. So, if Othniel represents the Word of God, His wife, Achsah, typifies national Israel (the external representation of the kingdom of God on earth - and by extension - the New Testament  churches and denominations who superseded her). We also know that God that God initiated and entered into a marriage relationship with national Israel, (as Ezekiel 16:1-15 maintains) until He divorced her (on the basis of Deuteronomy 24:1 for her spiritual adultery/idolatry) when Christ hung on the Cross:


Ezekiel 16:1-15 describes the rise and fall of His relationship with national Israel: “Again the word of the LORD came unto me, saying, {2} Son of man, cause Jerusalem to know her abominations, {3} And say, Thus saith the Lord GOD unto Jerusalem; Thy birth and thy nativity [is] of the land of Canaan; thy father [was] an Amorite, and thy mother an Hittite. {4} And [as for] thy nativity, in the day thou wast born thy navel was not cut, neither wast thou washed in water to supple [thee]; thou wast not salted at all, nor swaddled at all. {5} None eye pitied thee, to do any of these unto thee, to have compassion upon thee; but thou wast cast out in the open field, to the lothing of thy person, in the day that thou wast born. {6} And when I passed by thee, and saw thee polluted in thine own blood, I said unto thee [when thou wast] in thy blood, Live; yea, I said unto thee [when thou wast] in thy blood, Live. {7} I have caused thee to multiply as the bud of the field, and thou hast increased and waxen great, and thou art come to excellent ornaments: [thy] breasts are fashioned, and thine hair is grown, whereas thou [wast] naked and bare. {8} Now when I passed by thee, and looked upon thee, behold, thy time [was] the time of love; and I spread my skirt over thee, and covered thy nakedness: yea, I sware unto thee, and entered into a covenant with thee, saith the Lord GOD, and thou becamest mine. {9} Then washed I thee with water; yea, I throughly washed away thy blood from thee, and I anointed thee with oil. {10} I clothed thee also with broidered work, and shod thee with badgers' skin, and I girded thee about with fine linen, and I covered thee with silk. {11} I decked thee also with ornaments, and I put bracelets upon thy hands, and a chain on thy neck. {12} And I put a jewel on thy forehead, and earrings in thine ears, and a beautiful crown upon thine head. {13} Thus wast thou decked with gold and silver; and thy raiment [was of] fine linen, and silk, and broidered work; thou didst eat fine flour, and honey, and oil: and thou wast exceeding beautiful, and thou didst prosper into a kingdom. {14} And thy renown went forth among the heathen for thy beauty: for it [was] perfect through my comeliness, which I had put upon thee, saith the Lord GOD. {15} But thou didst trust in thine own beauty, and playedst the harlot because of thy renown, and pouredst out thy fornications on every one that passed by; his it was.” 


Romans 7:1-4 outlines the reality that every single individual - whether Jew or Gentile as well as national Israel corporately  - is married to the Law of God (their spiritual Husband), and as a result, will be brought into judgment unless they are one of God’s elect, which means that they have a “new” Husband (i.e., Christ). This, in turn, signifies that their “former” Husband (the Law of God) had died - meaning that they are no longer guilty of having violated the Law of God, since Christ paid for all their sins, “...from the foundation of the world.” 


“Know ye not, brethren, (for I speak to them that know the law,) how that the law hath dominion over a man as long as he liveth? {2} For the woman which hath an husband is bound by the law to [her] husband so long as he liveth; but if the husband be dead, she is loosed from the law of [her] husband. {3} So then if, while [her] husband liveth, she be married to another man, she shall be called an adulteress: but if her husband be dead, she is free from that law; so that she is no adulteress, though she be married to another man. {4}Wherefore, my brethren, ye also are become dead to the law by the body of Christ; that ye should be married to another, [even] to him who is raised from the dead, that we should bring forth fruit unto God.”


 Othniel, Achsah, and Caleb (Cont.)


As we continue to investigate this short historical parable in Judges 1:12-15 we notice some awkward language here:  apparently Othniel was prompted by Achsah to ask her father, Caleb, for a field, yet we do not read of this conversation actually taking place. Following this, there is an abrupt “shift in gears” as she alights from off her donkey, and asks her father for a “blessing” - acknowledging that she had been given a “south land” -and now requests “springs of water.” Caleb concedes, granting her “the upper springs” as well as “the nether springs.” Let’s look at each of these terms more closely, to see the spiritual dimension in this historical account. 


When She Came [To Him]


The first Hebrew word that we want to consider is actually rendered in verse 14 as a phrase in English: “And it came to pass, when she came...” (bow’:H935) This word is used in many different ways, and appears over 2500 times in the Old Testament. Here are some  examples:


In Genesis 2:22, it is rendered, “and brought”: “And the rib, which the LORD God had taken from man, made he a woman, and brought [bow’:H935] her unto the man.”


This same word is used repeatedly in Genesis 6 and 7, and in verse 16 of  Genesis 7:13 and 15-16 it is doubled, and appears as “entered” and “...went in”:


“In the selfsame day entered [bow’:H935] Noah, and Shem, and Ham, and Japheth, the sons of Noah, and Noah's wife, and the three wives of his sons with them, into the ark; ... {15} And they went in [bow’:H935] unto Noah into the ark, two and two of all flesh, wherein [is] the breath of life. {16} And they that went in, [bow’:H935] went in [bow’:H935] male and female of all flesh, as God had commanded him: and the LORD shut him in. 


In Genesis 49:10 we find this word rendered “come,” pointing very directly to the Lord Jesus Christ, Who is “Shiloh”: The sceptre shall not depart from Judah, nor a lawgiver from between his feet, until Shiloh come;[bow’:H935] and unto him [shall] the gathering of the people [be].


In Genesis 15:12 and 17 it is used in connection with the sun which is described as “was going down” and “went down” in yet another historical parable: “And when the sun was going down, [bow’:H935] a deep sleep fell upon Abram; and, lo, an horror of great darkness fell upon him. ... {17} And it came to pass, that, when the sun went down, [bow’:H935] and it was dark, behold a smoking furnace, and a burning lamp that passed between those pieces.


This term can also refer to sexual intimacy as Genesis 16:2 describes, in which it is translated “go in”: “And Sarai said unto Abram, Behold now, the LORD hath restrained me from bearing: I pray thee, go in [bow’:H935] unto my maid [Hagar]; it may be that I may obtain children by her. And Abram hearkened to the voice of Sarai.


In Ruth 2:4, Boaz represents the Lord Jesus Christ and the reapers God’s elect, in which this word is rendered, “came”:  “And, behold, Boaz came [bow’:H935] from Bethlehem[or “house of Bread”], and said unto the reapers, The LORD [be] with you. And they answered him, The LORD bless thee.”


And in Ruth 2:12, it appears as “thou art come,”: “The LORD recompense thy work, and a full reward be given thee of the LORD God of Israel, under whose wings thou art come [bow’:H935] to trust.”


In the magnificent exchange between David and Goliath in 1 Samuel 17:45 the words “comest” and “come” are utilized, but who they represent are vastly different (i.e., Satan vs. God):  “Then said David to the Philistine, Thou comest [bow’:H935] to me with a sword, and with a spear, and with a shield: but I come [bow’:H935] to thee in the name of the LORD of hosts, the God of the armies of Israel, whom thou hast defied.”


Psalm 40:7-8 records the very essence of the Lord Jesus Christ: “Then said I, Lo, I come: [bow’:H935] in the volume of the book [it is] written of me, {8} I delight to do thy will, O my God: yea, thy law [is] within my heart.”

Isaiah 63:4 is a reference to our current “day of judgment”: “ For the day of vengeance [is] in mine heart, and the year of my redeemed is come.” [bow’:H935]


And in Jeremiah 8:7, God highlights the blindness of those who are corporately, “God’s people”:  “Yea, the stork in the heaven knoweth her appointed times; and the turtle and the crane and the swallow observe the time of their coming; [bow’:H935] but my people know not the judgment of the LORD.”


In Ezekiel 20: 1, 3, 10, 15, 28-29, 35, 37-38, and 42, God makes reference to Israel in the wilderness as well as their comportment in the land of Canaan, which relates very definitely to our study in the book of Judges: “And it came to pass in the seventh year, in the fifth [month], the tenth [day] of the month, [that] certain of the elders of Israel came [bow’:H935] to enquire of the LORD, and sat before me. ... {3} Son of man, speak unto the elders of Israel, and say unto them, Thus saith the Lord GOD; Are ye come [bow’:H935] to enquire of me? [As] I live, saith the Lord GOD, I will not be enquired of by you. ... {10} Wherefore I caused them to go forth out of the land of Egypt, and brought [bow’:H935] them into the wilderness. ... {15} Yet also I lifted up my hand unto them in the wilderness, that I would not bring [bow’:H935] them into the land which I had given [them], flowing with milk and honey, which [is] the glory of all lands; ... {28} [For] when I had brought [bow’:H935] them into the land, [for] the which I lifted up mine hand to give it to them, then they saw every high hill, and all the thick trees, and they offered there their sacrifices, and there they presented the provocation of their offering: there also they made their sweet savour, and poured out there their drink offerings. {29} Then I said unto them, What [is] the high place whereunto ye go? [bow’:H935] And the name thereof is called Bamah [Bamah:H1117 - “high place”] unto this day. ... {35} And I will bring [bow’:H935] you into the wilderness of the people, and there will I plead with you face to face. ... {37} And I will cause you to pass under the rod, and I will bring [bow’:H935] you into the bond of the covenant: {38} And I will purge out from among you the rebels, and them that transgress against me: I will bring them forth out of the country where they sojourn, and they shall not enter [bow’:H935] into the land of Israel: and ye shall know that I [am] the LORD. ... {42} And ye shall know that I [am] the LORD, when I shall bring [bow’:H935] you into the land of Israel, into the country [for] the which I lifted up mine hand to give it to your fathers.”


Lord willing, we will continue our investigation of this historical parable in our next study.







JUDGES - PART 30

March 25, 2016


Welcome to Searching The Scriptures! This is Part 30 in the Book of Judges, and we are continuing our examination of the historical parable found in Judges 1:12-15,


“And Caleb said, He that smiteth Kirjathsepher, and taketh it, to him will I give Achsah my daughter to wife. {13} And Othniel, the son of Kenaz, Caleb's younger brother, took it: and he gave him Achsah his daughter to wife. {14} And it came to pass, when she came [bow’:H935][to him] that she moved  him [cuwth:H5496] to ask of her father  a field: and she lighted from off [her] ass; and Caleb said unto her, What wilt thou? {15} And she said unto him, Give me a blessing: for thou hast given me a south land; give me also springs of water. And Caleb gave her the upper springs and the nether springs.


That She [Achsah] Moved Him [Othniel] 


The next word that we want to consider in Judges 1:14 with regards to Achsah and Othniel is “...that she moved” (cuwth:H5496) in the phrase, “...that she moved him to ask of her father a field…”  If our understanding is correct, we have concluded that Caleb represents God the Father, Othniel, The Word of God, and Achsah represents national Israel and its counterpart - the institutional churches and denominations that have come under the judgment of God. Let’s see if these conclusions can continue to be confirmed -  if not we have to go back to the Bible -  and see where we’ve erred. May God give us His understanding because this is a difficult passage - at least it is for me. As I mentioned in our last study, there is no mention of a conversation that took place in which Othniel approached Caleb to ask him for a field; we simply read the statement that Achsah tells Caleb that she was given a “south land,” and then asks also for “springs of water.”  This is very curious language indeed, but we suspect God has much spiritual truth hidden in this historical parable.  The word, “that she moved” (cuwth:H5496) is found 18 times in the Old Testament and is translated in the following ways:  “persuade,” “ move,” “ set on,” “stir up,” “away,”  “entice,” “provoked,” and “removed.” Besides Judges 1:14 (and its parallel verse, Joshua 15:18) only one other reference -  out of a total of 18 -  is positive in nature; the other 15 are definitely negative (and this might even include Judges 1:14 and Joshua 15:18), as we note how God uses this word in Scripture.


In 2 Chronicles 18:31, we find God actually taking steps to ensure that Jehoshaphat’s life is preserved: “And it came to pass, when the captains of the chariots saw Jehoshaphat, that they said, It [is] the king of Israel. Therefore they compassed about him to fight: but Jehoshaphat cried out, and the LORD helped him; and God moved [cuwth:H5496] them [to depart] from him.”


Now consider some of the other entries, which convey the opposite implication:


Deuteronomy 13:6 commands, “If thy brother, the son of thy mother, or thy son, or thy daughter, or the wife of thy bosom, or thy friend, which [is] as thine own soul, entice [cuwth:H5496] thee secretly, saying, Let us go and serve other gods, which thou hast not known, thou, nor thy fathers;”


In 1 Samuel 26:19, we read of David’s heartfelt petition to King Saul who attempted to kill him on numerous occasions: “Now therefore, I pray thee, let my lord the king hear the words of his servant. If the LORD have stirred thee up [cuwth:H5496] against me, let him accept an offering: but if [they be] the children of men, cursed [be] they before the LORD; for they have driven me out this day from abiding in the inheritance of the LORD, saying, Go, serve other gods.”


1 Kings 21:25 portrays the diabolical nature of King Ahab’s wife - who typifies those within the New Testament churches that came under the wrath of God - which according to Revelation 2:20, are engaged in false teaching, spiritual fornication and idolatry:  “But there was none like unto Ahab, which did sell himself to work wickedness in the sight of the LORD, whom Jezebel his wife stirred up.” [cuwth:H5496]


2 Chronicles 18:2, we find Ahab (king of Samaria) persuading Jehoshaphat (king of Judah) to disobey God’s clear directive to not go up to Ramothgilead to fight:  “And after [certain] years he went down to Ahab to Samaria. And Ahab killed sheep and oxen for him in abundance, and for the people that [he had] with him, and persuaded [cuwth:H5496] him to go up [with him] to Ramothgilead.”


In 2 Chronicles 32:15 the Assyrian spokesman, Rabshekah, pompously asserts,  “Now therefore let not Hezekiah deceive you, nor persuade [cuwth:H5496] you on this manner, neither yet believe him: for no god of any nation or kingdom was able to deliver his people out of mine hand, and out of the hand of my fathers: how much less shall your God deliver you out of mine hand?”


Lastly, in Job 2:3, this word is rendered “although thou movedst”: “And the LORD said unto Satan, Hast thou considered my servant Job, that [there is] none like him in the earth, a perfect and an upright man, one that feareth God, and escheweth evil? and still he holdeth fast his integrity, although thou movedst [cuwth:H5496] me against him, to destroy him without cause.”


Overwhelmingly, these passages and the rest that I did not mention - with the exception of 2 Chr 18:31 - relate to judgment: either by God or (as God permitted), by Satan, or a representation of his kingdom (like the king of Assyria)  However, it is difficult to say, at this point, if this also applies to Judges 1:14 and Joshua 15:18, because the language is not definitive as in these other citations. So, for the time being, I would like to wait until we can uncover more evidence either way.


To Ask Of Her Father A Field


The term for “field” (sadeh:H7704) appears 333 times, and is predominantly rendered as such, and occasionally as “country,” “land,” “wild,” “ground,” and “soil.” Here are some illustrations of the way that God uses this particular term:


In Exodus 23:16 it is used in connection which two of the three main feasts which God commanded the Israelites to celebrate:  “And the feast of harvest, the firstfruits of thy labours, which thou hast sown in the field: [sadeh:H7704] and the feast of ingathering, [which is] in the end of the year, when thou hast gathered in thy labours out of the field.” [sadeh:H7704]


Verse 12 of Joshua 21:11-12 (along with its parallel verse in 1 Chronicles 6:56) outlines the fields (and villages) surrounding Hebron (formerly known as Arba) which was given to Caleb of the tribe of Judah:  “But the fields [sadeh:H7704] of the city [Hebron], and the villages thereof, gave they to Caleb the son of Jephunneh for his possession.”


Proverbs 31:16 presents this “virtuous woman,”  as a spiritual picture of true believers giving the Gospel during the “day of salvation”: “She considereth a field, [sadeh:H7704] and buyeth it: with the fruit of her hands she planteth a vineyard.”


This term, “field,” also appears frequently in the book of Ruth and is translated as “country [of Moab]” (referring to Ruth’s homeland of Moab, which is frequently repeated to highlight her spiritual homeland - a picture of those who are under the wrath of God or she is named “the Moabitess”) as well as “field” - in which Ruth - typifying the elect (God having graciously saved her), who during the “day of salvation” were busy working in the “fields” (representing the entire world - according to Matthew 13:38) by giving the Gospel; notice, too, in verse 1 that this is occurring during the time “...when the judges ruled…”:


Ruth 1:1-2, 6, and 22 reveal: “Now it came to pass in the days when the judges ruled, that there was a famine in the land. And a certain man of Bethlehemjudah went to sojourn in the country [sadeh:H7704] of Moab, he, and his wife, and his two sons. {2} And the name of the man [was] Elimelech, and the name of his wife Naomi, and the name of his two sons Mahlon and Chilion, Ephrathites of Bethlehemjudah. And they came into the country [sadeh:H7704] of Moab, and continued there. ... {6} Then she arose with her daughters in law, that she might return from the country [sadeh:H7704] of Moab: for she had heard in the country [sadeh:H7704] of Moab how that the LORD had visited his people in giving them bread. ... {22} So Naomi returned, and Ruth the Moabitess, her daughter in law, with her, which returned out of the country [sadeh:H7704] of Moab: and they came to Bethlehem in the beginning of barley harvest.”


Ruth 2:2-3, 6, 8-9, 17, and 22 continue and again please note that when God uses the word “country,” as opposed to “field,” it is always in association with “Moab”: “And Ruth the Moabitess said unto Naomi, Let me now go to the field, [sadeh:H7704] and glean ears of corn after [him] in whose sight I shall find grace. And she said unto her, Go, my daughter. {3} And she went, and came, and gleaned in the field [sadeh:H7704] after the reapers: and her hap was to light on a part of the field [sadeh:H7704] [belonging] unto Boaz, who [was] of the kindred of Elimelech. ... {6} And the servant that was set over the reapers answered and said, It [is] the Moabitish damsel that came back with Naomi out of the country [H7704] of Moab: ... {8} Then said Boaz unto Ruth, Hearest thou not, my daughter? Go not to glean in another field, [sadeh:H7704] neither go from hence, but abide here fast by my maidens: {9} [Let] thine eyes [be] on the field [sadeh:H7704] that they do reap, and go thou after them: have I not charged the young men that they shall not touch thee? and when thou art athirst, go unto the vessels, and drink of [that] which the young men have drawn. ... {17} So she gleaned in the field [sadeh:H7704] until even, and beat out that she had gleaned: and it was about an ephah of barley. ... {22} And Naomi said unto Ruth her daughter in law, [It is] good, my daughter, that thou go out with his maidens, that they meet thee not in any other field.” [sadeh:H7704]


Similarly, Ruth 4:3 and 5 state: “And he said unto the kinsman, Naomi, that is come again out of the country [sadeh:H7704] of Moab, selleth a parcel of land, [sadeh:H7704] which [was] our brother Elimelech's: ... {5} Then said Boaz, What day thou buyest the field [sadeh:H7704] of the hand of Naomi, thou must buy [it] also of Ruth the Moabitess, the wife of the dead, to raise up the name of the dead upon his inheritance.”


In Jeremiah 26:18 we learn of the destruction of Judah and Jerusalem by Nebuchadnezzar - typifying the end of God’s usage of the New Testament churches and denominations:  “Micah the Morasthite prophesied in the days of Hezekiah king of Judah, and spake to all the people of Judah, saying, Thus saith the LORD of hosts; Zion shall be plowed [like] a field, [sadeh:H7704] and Jerusalem shall become heaps, and the mountain of the house as the high places of a forest.”


Micah 3:12 likewise affirms,  “Therefore shall Zion for your sake be plowed [as] a field, [sadeh:H7704] and Jerusalem shall become heaps, and the mountain of the house as the high places of the forest.”


Joel 1:10-12, and 19-20 reiterate this same theme: “The field [sadeh:H7704] is wasted, the land mourneth; for the corn is wasted: the new wine is dried up, the oil languisheth. {11} Be ye ashamed, O ye husbandmen; howl, O ye vinedressers, for the wheat and for the barley; because the harvest of the field [sadeh:H7704] is perished. {12} The vine is dried up, and the fig tree languisheth; the pomegranate tree, the palm tree also, and the apple tree, [even] all the trees of the field, [sadeh:H7704] are withered: because joy is withered away from the sons of men. ... {19} O LORD, to thee will I cry: for the fire hath devoured the pastures of the wilderness, and the flame hath burned all the trees of the field. [sadeh:H7704] {20} The beasts of the field [sadeh:H7704] cry also unto thee: for the rivers of waters are dried up, and the fire hath devoured the pastures of the wilderness.”


Is The “Field” The Same As A “South Land”?


At this point we have to ask the question, is the “field” (sadeh:H7704) which spiritually points to the world - and the task of the believers whether during the church age or afterwards, who were to bring the Gospel during the day of salvation (which ended on May 21, 2011) -  the same as the “south (negeb:H5045) land” (’erets:H776) that we read about in Judges 1:15 ?


I will let you ponder that, since we have run out of time today. Lord willing, we will discover the answer to that in our next study.



JUDGES - PART 31

April 4, 2016



Welcome to Searching The Scriptures! This is Part 31 in the Book of Judges, and we are continuing our examination of the historical parable found in Judges 1:12-15,


“And Caleb said, He that smiteth Kirjathsepher, and taketh it, to him will I give Achsah my daughter to wife. {13} And Othniel, the son of Kenaz, Caleb's younger brother, took it: and he gave him Achsah his daughter to wife. {14} And it came to pass, when she came [bow’:H935][to him] that she moved  him [cuwth:H5496] to ask of her father  a field: and she lighted from off [her] ass; and Caleb said unto her, What wilt thou? {15} And she said unto him, Give me a blessing: for thou hast given me a south land; give me also springs of water. And Caleb gave her the upper springs and the nether springs.


Is The “Field” The Same As A “South Land”?


At the end of our last study, I posed the question if the “field” (sadeh:H7704)  that Achsah (a picture of national Israel) moved her husband Othniel (representing the Word of God) to ask Caleb (typifying God the Father) is the same as the “south land” which she received. Keep in mind that the “field” can refer to the world (as we read in Matthew 13:38), and the believers’ job during the church age and after was to get the Gospel into the world - typified by Israel who was also the external representation of the kingdom of God on earth; it can also refer to God’s judgment upon the churches and denominations - symbolized by national Israel - in addition to our present “day of judgment,” as a “field” that is “plowed” in a destructive sense - and the fruits of the field including the cattle - are depicted as being “wasted,” “perished,” “withered,” and “burned,” as we saw in our previous study in Joel 1, Micah 3, and Jeremiah 26.  Let’s consider how God uses this term, “south” (negeb:H5045) and “land” (’erets:H776). By itself, “south” is found 112 times, translated as: “south,” “southward,” “south side,” and “south country.” On the other hand, “land” is found over 2500 times in the Old Testament, and primarily as: “land,” “earth,” “country,” and “ground.” They appear together in 21 references - here are a few examples:


Genesis 20:1, “And Abraham journeyed from thence toward the south [negeb:H5045] country [’erets:H776], and dwelled between Kadesh and Shur, and sojourned in Gerar.”


Genesis 24:62, “And Isaac came from the way of the well Lahairoi; for he dwelt in the south [negeb:H5045] country.”[’erets:H776]


In order to look for a wife among his relatives, Isaac sends Jacob from Beersheba (the southernmost point in Canaan) to his relatives in Haran as we read in verse 10 of Genesis 28:10-19; in verse 14 we find our two words, “of the earth” and “to the south,” even though in this context it is referring to the elect who would come from all points of the compass:


“And Jacob went out from Beersheba, and went toward Haran. {11} And he lighted upon a certain place, and tarried there all night, because the sun was set; and he took of the stones of that place, and put [them for] his pillows, and lay down in that place to sleep. {12} And he dreamed, and behold a ladder set up on the earth, and the top of it reached to heaven: and behold the angels of God ascending and descending on it. {13} And, behold, the LORD stood above it, and said, I [am] the LORD God of Abraham thy father, and the God of Isaac: the land whereon thou liest, to thee will I give it, and to thy seed; {14} And thy seed shall be as the dust of the earth [’erets:H776], and thou shalt spread abroad to the west, and to the east, and to the north, and to the south [negeb:H5045]: and in thee and in thy seed shall all the families of the earth be blessed. {15} And, behold, I [am] with thee, and will keep thee in all [places] whither thou goest, and will bring thee again into this land; for I will not leave thee, until I have done [that] which I have spoken to thee of. {16} And Jacob awaked out of his sleep, and he said, Surely the LORD is in this place; and I knew [it] not. {17} And he was afraid, and said, How dreadful [is] this place! this [is] none other but the house of God, and this [is] the gate of heaven. {18} And Jacob rose up early in the morning, and took the stone that he had put [for] his pillows, and set it up [for] a pillar, and poured oil upon the top of it. {19} And he called the name of that place Bethel [i.e., “the house of God”]: but the name of that city [was called] Luz at the first.”


From the preceding verses we understand that the patriarchs (portraying the elect) were associated with the “south land,” because Abraham, Isaac and Jacob lived in Canaan. Christ is also in view as the “king of the south” in Daniel 11:40, Who goes to war spiritually with the “king of the north” (who represents Satan) which has to do with the fact that God allowed Satan to take over the churches and denominations, as a judgment against them, as of May 21, 1988, which also marked the beginning of the Great Tribulation:


“And at the time of the end shall the king of the south [negeb:H5045] push at him: and the king of the north shall come against him like a whirlwind, with chariots, and with horsemen, and with many ships; and he shall enter into the countries [’erets:H776], and shall overflow and pass over.”


One needs to recognize that this was altogether in accordance with what God had stipulated in 1 Peter 4:17,


For the time [is come] that judgment must begin at the house of God: and if [it] first [begin] at us, what shall the end [be] of them that obey not the gospel of God?”


In the New Testament, the “queen of the south” (Matthew 12:42; Luke 11:31) refers to the Queen of Sheba, who, in turn, represents the Bride of Christ. Prior to Joshua’s conquest of the land we read the following details regarding the various peoples who inhabited the “south” (and others parts of Canaan) in Numbers 13:29 and Numbers 33:40 respectively,


“The Amalekites dwell in the land [’erets:H776] of the south [negeb:H5045]: and the Hittites, and the Jebusites, and the Amorites, dwell in the mountains: and the Canaanites dwell by the sea, and by the coast of Jordan.”


“And king Arad the Canaanite, which dwelt in the south [negeb:H5045]  in the land [’erets:H776] of Canaan, heard of the coming of the children of Israel.”


Joshua 11:40 outlines the extent of Joshua’s victory - by God’s enabling -  over many of these heathen nations: “So Joshua [a figure of the Lord Jesus Christ] smote all the country [’erets:H776] of the hills, and of the south [negeb:H5045], and of the vale, and of the springs, and all their kings: he left none remaining, but utterly destroyed all that breathed, as the LORD God of Israel commanded.”


I want to back up a bit as I inadvertently forgot to research two key words in Judges 1:14 (and its parallel verse in Joshua 15:18) “...him to ask [sha’al:H7592] of her father [ab:H1]…”


“...Him To Ask [sha’al:H7592] Of Her Father [ab:H1]…” 


These two Hebrew words , rendered “...him to ask...” (sha’al:H7592) and “...of her father…” (ab:H1) are found in 9 other passages (besides Judges 1:14 and Joshua 15:18) - one of which is particularly germane to our discussion. It appears in  Deuteronomy 32:7, where these terms are translated as “ask,” and “thy father.”  I’ll read verses 5-36 to get the context which covers the rise and fall of national Israel, whom God was married to; please note the same word “field” surfaces in verse 13 and a derivative in verse 32:  


“They have corrupted themselves, their spot [is] not [the spot] of his children: [they are] a perverse and crooked generation. {6} Do ye thus requite the LORD, O foolish people and unwise? [is] not he thy father [that] hath bought thee? hath he not made thee, and established thee? {7} Remember the days of old, consider the years of many generations: ask [sha’al:H7592] thy father [ab:H1], and he will shew thee; thy elders, and they will tell thee. {8} When the most High divided to the nations their inheritance, when he separated the sons of Adam, he set the bounds of the people according to the number of the children of Israel. {9} For the LORD'S portion [is] his people; Jacob [is] the lot of his inheritance. {10} He found him in a desert land, and in the waste howling wilderness; he led him about, he instructed him, he kept him as the apple of his eye. {11} As an eagle stirreth up her nest, fluttereth over her young, spreadeth abroad her wings, taketh them, beareth them on her wings: {12} [So] the LORD alone did lead him, and [there was] no strange god with him. {13} He made him ride on the high places of the earth, that he might eat the increase [or “fruit”] of the fields [sadeh:H7704]; and he made him to suck honey [symbolizes the Word of God] out of the rock [Christ], and oil [a picture of the Holy Spirit] out of the flinty rock.[Christ] {14} Butter [derived from “the milk” of the Word] of kine [i.e., “cattle”], and milk [i.e., the Gospel - milk of the Word] of sheep, with fat [belongs to the LORD - “abundance”] of lambs, and rams of the breed of Bashan, and goats, with the fat [belongs to the LORD - “abundance”] of kidneys of wheat; [the “Bread” of Life] and thou didst drink the pure blood [of Christ - the Gospel] of the grape. {15} But Jeshurun [synonymous with Israel] waxed fat, and kicked: thou art waxen fat, thou art grown thick, thou art covered [with fatness]; then he forsook God [which] made him, and lightly esteemed the Rock [Christ]of his salvation. {16} They provoked him to jealousy with strange [gods], with abominations provoked they him to anger. {17} They sacrificed unto devils, not to God; to gods whom they knew not, to new [gods that] came newly up, whom your fathers feared not. {18} Of the Rock [that] begat thee thou art unmindful, and hast forgotten God that formed thee. {19} And when the LORD saw [it], he abhorred [them], because of the provoking of his sons, and of his daughters. {20} And he said, I will hide my face from them, I will see what their end [shall be]: for they [are] a very froward generation, children in whom [is] no faith. {21} They have moved me to jealousy with [that which is] not God; they have provoked me to anger with their vanities: and I will move them to jealousy with [those which are] not a people; I will provoke them to anger with a foolish nation. {22} For a fire is kindled in mine anger, and shall burn unto the lowest hell, and shall consume the earth with her increase, and set on fire the foundations of the mountains. {23} I will heap mischiefs upon them; I will spend mine arrows upon them. {24} [They shall be] burnt with hunger, and devoured with burning heat, and with bitter destruction: I will also send the teeth of beasts upon them, with the poison of serpents of the dust. {25} The sword without, and terror within, shall destroy both the young man and the virgin, the suckling [also] with the man of gray hairs. {26} I said, I would scatter them into corners, I would make the remembrance of them to cease from among men: {27} Were it not that I feared the wrath of the enemy, lest their adversaries should behave themselves strangely, [and] lest they should say, Our hand [is] high, and the LORD hath not done all this. {28} For they [are] a nation void of counsel, neither [is there any] understanding in them. {29} O that they were wise, [that] they understood this, [that] they would consider their latter end! {30} How should one chase a thousand, and two put ten thousand to flight, except their Rock  had sold them, and the LORD had shut them up? {31} For their rock [is] not as our Rock, even our enemies themselves [being] judges. {32} For their vine [is] of the vine of Sodom, and of the fields [shedema:H7709] of Gomorrah: their grapes [are] grapes of gall, their clusters [are] bitter: {33} Their wine [is] the poison of dragons, and the cruel venom of asps. {34} [Is] not this laid up in store with me, [and] sealed up among my treasures? {35} To me [belongeth] vengeance, and recompence; their foot shall slide in [due] time: for the day of their calamity [is] at hand, and the things that shall come upon them make haste. {36} For the LORD shall judge his people, and repent himself for his servants, when he seeth that [their] power is gone, and [there is] none shut up, or left.”


The preceding account helps us to see that the “field” that Achsah (i.e., “national Israel”) was asking her husband, Othniel (i.e., the “Word of God”) to ask of her father, Caleb (typifying God the Father) had to do originally with God’s spiritual blessing and inheritance altogether - provided that Israel remained faithful to God - as Deuteronomy 28, for example, highlights God’s blessings (for obedience) as well as His curses (for disobedience). The above account reveals Israel rebellion (as we will see throughout the book of Judges in the cycle of “rebellion > oppression > deliverance and >rest” which characterizes this book. Initially, Israel was the custodian of the true Gospel in their day; as such, the term “increase of the fields” refers to spiritual fruitfulness (a result of God’s favor) but sadly Israel’s disobedience eventually degenerated into “the fields of Gomorrah,” and they (along with their future counterpart - the institutional churches and denominations) succumbed to the “world,” or the kingdom of Satan, as we read in 1 John 2:16,


“For all that [is] in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world.


It looks like we have run out of time today, so Lord willing, we will consider the interesting phrase, “...and she lighted from off her ass…” in our next lesson.

  



JUDGES - PART 32

April 11, 2016



Welcome to Searching The Scriptures! This is Part 32 in the Book of Judges, and we are continuing our examination of the historical parable found in Judges 1:12-15,


“And Caleb said, He that smiteth Kirjathsepher, and taketh it, to him will I give Achsah my daughter to wife. {13} And Othniel, the son of Kenaz, Caleb's younger brother, took it: and he gave him Achsah his daughter to wife. {14} And it came to pass, when she came [bow’:H935][to him] that she moved  him [cuwth:H5496] to ask of her father  a field: and she lighted from off [her] ass; and Caleb said unto her, What wilt thou? {15} And she said unto him, Give me a blessing: for thou hast given me a south land; give me also springs of water. And Caleb gave her the upper springs and the nether springs.


And She Lighted From Off Her Ass


In our previous study, we left off at the next phrase in Judges 1:15, “...and she lighted (tsanach:H6795) from off [her] ass…”


Besides Judges 1:14 (and its parallel verse, Joshua 15:18) the only other passage in which this particular Hebrew word, “and she lighted” appears is in Judges 4:21, where is is rendered “and fastened” with regard to the death of Sisera (a portrait of Satan) by Jael (representing the elect), which, if God allows, we will develop further, once we get there: “Then Jael Heber's wife took a nail of the tent, and took an hammer in her hand, and went softly unto him, and smote the nail into his temples, and fastened [tsanach:H6795] it into the ground: for he was fast asleep and weary. So he died.”


It’s significant that God utilized this word (tsanach:H6795), and not the more common word, “and she lighted off” (yarad:H3381), which is found 380 times, and frequently translated as “come down,” “go down,” or “descend.” The reason for this, as we will discover, is the spiritual implication that God wants to emphasize. H3381 is found, for example, in 1 Samuel 25:23, which is a very similar account involving Abigail (who later become one of David’s wives) dismounting her donkey to plead for mercy regarding her husband, Nabal, who maltreated David’s men, even though they had showed kindness to Nabal’s sheep shearers: 


“And when Abigail saw David, she hasted, and lighted off [yarad:H3381] the ass, and fell before David on her face, and bowed herself to the ground,” 


Donkeys Symbolize Mankind


Since Achsah dismounted from her donkey, it would behoove us to consider its spiritual ramifications. Throughout Scripture, an “ass” can represent mankind: those whom God saves (the elect), or the non-elect, whose necks are “spiritually” broken (since they lack a Savior) as Exodus 13:13 and 34:20 maintain respectively:


“And every firstling of an ass [chamowr:H2543] thou shalt redeem with a lamb; and if thou wilt not redeem it, then thou shalt break his neck: and all the firstborn of man among thy children shalt thou redeem.”


“But the firstling of an ass [chamowr:H2543] thou shalt redeem with a lamb: and if thou redeem [him] not, then shalt thou break his neck. All the firstborn of thy sons thou shalt redeem. And none shall appear before me empty.”


You also might recall that in the New Testament Christ came riding triumphantly into Jerusalem upon a foal, along with its mother as Matthew 21:1-9 depict. The spiritual reality that is pictured here is that Christ is ruling (which is the significance of “sitting) over the elect - typified by these two donkeys. The number “2” in the Bible is a reference to those who are the custodians of the Gospel:


“And when they drew nigh unto Jerusalem, and were come to Bethphage, unto the mount of Olives, then sent Jesus two disciples, {2} Saying unto them, Go into the village over against you, and straightway ye shall find an ass [onos:G3688] tied, and a colt [polos:G4454] with her: loose [them], and bring [them] unto me. {3} And if any [man] say ought unto you, ye shall say, The Lord hath need of them; and straightway he will send them. {4} All this was done, that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by the prophet, saying, {5} Tell ye the daughter of Sion, Behold, thy King cometh unto thee, meek, and sitting upon an ass [onos:G3688], and a colt [polos:G4454] the foal [huios:G5207] of an ass [onos:G3688]. {6} And the disciples went, and did as Jesus commanded them, {7} And brought the ass, and the colt, and put on them their clothes, and they set [him] thereon. {8} And a very great multitude spread their garments in the way; others cut down branches from the trees, and strawed [them] in the way. {9} And the multitudes that went before, and that followed, cried, saying, Hosanna to the Son of David: Blessed [is] he that cometh in the name of the Lord; Hosanna in the highest.”


Matthew 21:5 is a quotation taken from Zechariah 9:9, and thus we have what is called a “word bridge” between the Old and New Testament which supplies more information about each of these Hebrew and Greek terms. The first occurrence of the term “ass,”(chamowr:H2543) in Zechariah 9:9 is found in Judges 1:14; the second word for “ass” (’athown:H860) is different, denoting a female donkey:  


“Rejoice greatly, O daughter of Zion; shout, O daughter of Jerusalem: behold, thy King cometh unto thee: he [is] just, and having salvation; lowly, and riding upon an ass [chamowr:H2543], and upon a colt [`ayir:H5895] the foal [ben:H1121] of an ass.” [’athown:H860]


Three of these identical terms in Zechariah 9:9 - “colt,” “foal,” and “ass” -  also appear in Genesis 49:11, pointing to the Lord Jesus Christ, in the context of the “last days,” which is a reference to the great tribulation of our day, the latter rain, and our present “day of judgment.” Genesis 49:8-12 reveal,


“Judah, thou [art he] whom thy brethren shall praise: thy hand [shall be] in the neck of thine enemies; thy father's children shall bow down before thee. {9} Judah [is] a lion's whelp: from the prey, my son, thou art gone up: he stooped down, he couched as a lion, and as an old lion; who shall rouse him up? {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]. {11} Binding his foal [ben:H1121] unto the vine [gephen:H1612], and his ass's [’athown:H860] colt [`ayir:H5895] unto the choice vine [soreq:H8321]; he washed his garments in wine, and his clothes in the blood of grapes: {12} His eyes [shall be] red with wine, and his teeth white with milk.”


A Closer Look At Genesis 49:11


Let’s take a closer look at Genesis 49:11 to see how this might provide a better understanding of the phrase in Judges 1:14,...and she lighted (tsanach:H6795) from off [her] ass (chamowr:H2543)…” 


Binding


The term, “binding” (’acar:H631) is translated predominantly as such, but it can also be rendered as “make ready” or “prepare.”


It is found in Isaiah 61:1, which underscores the mission of the Lord Jesus Christ during His earthly ministry, which was a reflection of what He had accomplished on behalf of His people, prior to the creation of our universe: “The Spirit of the Lord GOD [is] upon me; because the LORD hath anointed me to preach good tidings unto the meek; he hath sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives, and the opening of the prison to [them that are] bound;” [’acar:H631]


Unto The Vine [gephen:H1612]...Unto The Choice Vine [soreq:H8321]


What is relevant to our present study is how God associates the “colt,” “foal,” and “ass” in Genesis 49:11 with the “vine” twice; these are actually two different Strong numbers for “vine,” and they only appear together in one other place, besides Genesis 49:11, and that is in Jeremiah 2:21,


“Yet I had planted thee a noble vine [soreq:H8321], wholly a right seed: how then art thou turned into the degenerate plant of a strange vine [gephen:H1612] unto me?”  


The context of Jeremiah 2:1-13 and 32 (and other similar passages like Isaiah 5) serve to illustrate the spiritual degeneration that is in view in Jeremiah 2:21,


“Moreover the word of the LORD came to me, saying, {2} Go and cry in the ears of Jerusalem, saying, Thus saith the LORD; I remember thee, the kindness of thy youth, the love of thine espousals, when thou wentest after me in the wilderness, in a land [that was] not sown. {3} Israel [was] holiness unto the LORD, [and] the firstfruits of his increase: all that devour him shall offend; evil shall come upon them, saith the LORD. {4} Hear ye the word of the LORD, O house of Jacob, and all the families of the house of Israel: {5} Thus saith the LORD, What iniquity have your fathers found in me, that they are gone far from me, and have walked after vanity, and are become vain? {6} Neither said they, Where [is] the LORD that brought us up out of the land of Egypt, that led us through the wilderness, through a land of deserts and of pits, through a land of drought, and of the shadow of death, through a land that no man passed through, and where no man dwelt? {7} And I brought you into a plentiful country, to eat the fruit thereof and the goodness thereof; but when ye entered, ye defiled my land, and made mine heritage an abomination. {8} The priests said not, Where [is] the LORD? and they that handle the law knew me not: the pastors also transgressed against me, and the prophets prophesied by Baal, and walked after [things that] do not profit. {9} Wherefore I will yet plead with you, saith the LORD, and with your children's children will I plead. {10} For pass over the isles of Chittim, and see; and send unto Kedar, and consider diligently, and see if there be such a thing. {11} Hath a nation changed [their] gods, which [are] yet no gods? but my people have changed their glory for [that which] doth not profit. {12} Be astonished, O ye heavens, at this, and be horribly afraid, be ye very desolate, saith the LORD. {13} For my people have committed two evils; they have forsaken me the fountain of living waters, [and] hewed them out cisterns, broken cisterns, that can hold no water… {32} Can a maid forget her ornaments, [or] a bride her attire? yet my people have forgotten me days without number.”


The allusion in verse 23 to a maid (or virgin) forgetting “...her ornaments or a bride her attire...” reminds us of Ezekiel 16:11-15,


I decked thee also with ornaments, and I put bracelets upon thy hands, and a chain on thy neck. {12} And I put a jewel on thy forehead, and earrings in thine ears, and a beautiful crown upon thine head. {13} Thus wast thou decked with gold and silver; and thy raiment [was of] fine linen, and silk, and broidered work; thou didst eat fine flour, and honey, and oil: and thou wast exceeding beautiful, and thou didst prosper into a kingdom. {14} And thy renown went forth among the heathen for thy beauty: for it [was] perfect through my comeliness, which I had put upon thee, saith the Lord GOD. {15} But thou didst trust in thine own beauty, and playedst the harlot because of thy renown, and pouredst out thy fornications on every one that passed by; his it was.” 


It looks like we’ve come to the end of our lesson for today. Lord willing, we will continue our examination of this historical parable in our next study.





JUDGES - PART 33

April 13, 2016



Welcome to Searching The Scriptures! This is Part 33 in the Book of Judges, and we are continuing our examination of the historical parable found in Judges 1:12-15,


“And Caleb said, He that smiteth Kirjathsepher, and taketh it, to him will I give Achsah my daughter to wife. {13} And Othniel, the son of Kenaz, Caleb's younger brother, took it: and he gave him Achsah his daughter to wife. {14} And it came to pass, when she came [bow’:H935][to him] that she moved  him [cuwth:H5496] to ask of her father  a field: and she lighted from off [her] ass; and Caleb said unto her, What wilt thou? {15} And she said unto him, Give me a blessing: for thou hast given me a south land; give me also springs of water. And Caleb gave her the upper springs and the nether springs.


And She Lighted From Off Her Ass


In our previous study, we left off at the phrase in Judges 1:15, “...and she lighted (tsanach:H6795) from off [her] ass…”


In our previous study, I mentioned that besides Judges 1:14 (and its parallel verse, Joshua 15:18) the only other passage in which this particular Hebrew word, “and she lighted” appears, is in Judges 4:21, where is is rendered “and fastened” with regard to the death of Sisera (a portrait of Satan) by Jael (representing the elect), which, if God allows, we will develop further, once we get there: “Then Jael Heber's wife took a nail of the tent, and took an hammer in her hand, and went softly unto him, and smote the nail into his temples, and fastened [tsanach:H6795] it into the ground: for he was fast asleep and weary. So he died.”


It’s significant that God utilized this word (tsanach:H6795), and not the more common word, “and she lighted off” (yarad:H3381), which is found 380 times in the Old Testament, and frequently translated as “come down,” “go down,” or “descend.” The reason for this, as we will discover, is the spiritual implication that God wants to emphasize.


Remember Achsah’s Name


In Part 29 we concluded the following with regard to the spiritual significance of Achsah’s name. The root word (`ekec:H5914) for Achsah (`Akcah:H5915) only surfaces in Proverbs 7:22 and Isaiah 3:18,


Proverbs 7:22 states, “He goeth after her [the “harlot”] straightway, as an ox goeth to the slaughter, or as a fool to the correction of the stocks;” [`ekec:H5914]


And in Isaiah 3:18 we read:  “In that day the Lord will take away the bravery of [their] tinkling ornaments [`ekec:H5914] [about their feet], and [their] cauls, and [their] round tires like the moon,”


H5914, in turn, has a root or parent word, spelled the same as H5914 which is only found in one citation - in this very same chapter - in Isaiah 3:16,


“Moreover the LORD saith, Because the daughters of Zion are haughty, and walk with stretched forth necks and wanton eyes, walking and mincing [as] they go, and making a tinkling [`akac:H5913] with their feet:”


As you can see in both Proverbs 7 and Isaiah 3, the focus is on God’s judgment which fell on the institutional churches and denominations, symbolized by a “harlot,” which the “daughters of Zion” had become. This is now associated with Achsah, Othniel’s wife, whose name signifies these “tinkling ornaments;”  in other words, the institutional churches and denominations have really become spiritual “stocks,” designed to confine one’s feet (or “will”) and bring its members under the wrath of God. 


God’s Associates Achsah (Who Represents National Israel As Well As The New Testament Churches) With Satan Receiving A Death Blow


With the foregoing information in mind one can see why God chose the word that He did (tsanach:H6795) in Judges 1:14, as opposed to the more common term (yarad:H3381) to form the association between Achsah (who represents national Israel as well as the New Testament churches) with Sisera (Satan) receiving a death blow, since God abandoned all churches worldwide, and without exception on May 21, 1988, bringing about their spiritual death. The death blow given to Sisera (Satan) is also reminiscent of what we read in Genesis 3:15,


“And I will put enmity between thee [Satan] and the woman [the elect], and between thy [Satan’s] seed and her [the elect’s] seed [Christ]; it [or “he,” i.e. Christ] shall bruise thy [Satan’s] head, and thou [Satan] shalt bruise his [Christ’s] heel.”


Give Me A Blessing


The next phrase that we want to consider in this historical parable is: “...and Caleb said unto her, What wilt thou? {15} And she said unto him, Give me a blessing [Berakah:H1293]…” The term “me a blessing” is a reference to salvation spiritually, and it appears 69 times in the Old Testament. Notice how God connects “blessing” with “water,” “dew,””floods,” and  “shower(s),” as the following passages illustrate:


Psalm 133:3,  “As the dew of Hermon, [and as the dew] that descended upon the mountains of Zion: for there the LORD commanded the blessing, [Berakah:H1293] [even] life for evermore.


Isaiah 44:3, “For I will pour water upon him that is thirsty, and floods upon the dry ground: I will pour my spirit upon thy seed, and my blessing [Berakah:H1293] upon thine offspring:”


Ezekiel 34:26, “And I will make them and the places round about my hill a blessing [Berakah:H1293] and I will cause the shower to come down in his season; there shall be showers of blessing.” [Berakah:H1293]


Most notably the word “blessing” is also used in connection with Esau, who, like Achsah, represents both national Israel as well as the churches and denominations that have come under the wrath of God, as we see from Genesis 27:12, 35-36, 38, and 41, which describes Jacob buying the “birthright” (Christ) and later, stealing the “blessing” (salvation) from Esau:


“My father peradventure will feel me [Jacob], and I shall seem to him as a deceiver; and I shall bring a curse upon me, and not a blessing. [Berakah:H1293] ... {35} And he [Isaac] said, Thy brother [Jacob] came with subtilty, and hath taken away thy [Esau] blessing. [Berakah:H1293] {36} And he [Esau] said, Is not he rightly named Jacob? for he hath supplanted me these two times: he took away my birthright; and, behold, now he hath taken away my blessing. [Berakah:H1293] And he said, Hast thou not reserved a blessing [Berakah:H1293] for me? ... {38} And Esau said unto his father, Hast thou but one blessing, [Berakah:H1293] my father? bless me, [even] me also, O my father. And Esau lifted up his voice, and wept. ... {41} And Esau hated Jacob because of the blessing [Berakah:H1293] wherewith his father blessed him: and Esau said in his heart, The days of mourning for my father are at hand; then will I slay my brother Jacob.”


For Thou Hast Given Me A South Land


In Part 31 we learned that the “south land” is a reference to the Lord Jesus Christ (“the king of the south” - Daniel 11:40) and to His elect people. Having been given a “south land” (the inheritance of true believers) Achsah (representing national Israel/the churches and denominations) also requests “springs of water” from her father Caleb (who pictures God the Father), and as we saw earlier -  the term “blessing” (indicating the blessing of salvation) -  is associated with water.  The two Hebrew words, “springs” (gullah:H1543) and “of water” (mayim:H4325) only appear together here in Judges 1:15 (and its parallel verse, Joshua 15:19), so we will have to look at these terms individually to see what God might reveal to us.


Springs


Besides the 6 times that this term, “springs” is used in both Judges 1:15 and Joshua 15:19, it appears 8 other times in the following verses:


1 Kings 7:41-42 describe the architectural components of the two brass pillars that graced the entrance of the first (Solomon’s) Temple, [which according to 1 Kings 7:21 and 2 Chronicles 3:17 reveal their position and meaning: Jachin (right) - “God will establish” and Boaz (left) - a great type of Christ ]: “The two pillars, and the [two] bowls [gullah:H1543] of the chapiters that [were] on the top of the two pillars; and the two networks, to cover the two bowls [gullah:H1543] of the chapiters which [were] upon the top of the pillars; {42} And four hundred pomegranates for the two networks, [even] two rows of pomegranates for one network, to cover the two bowls [gullah:H1543] of the chapiters that [were] upon the pillars;”


2 Chronicles 4:12-13 contains almost identical language, except for two words: “pommels” instead of “bowls;” and “wreaths” instead of “networks”: “[To wit], the two pillars, and the pommels, [gullah:H1543] and the chapiters [which were] on the top of the two pillars, and the two wreaths to cover the two pommels [gullah:H1543] of the chapiters which [were] on the top of the pillars; {13} And four hundred pomegranates on the two wreaths; two rows of pomegranates on each wreath, to cover the two pommels [gullah:H1543] of the chapiters which [were] upon the pillars.”


In Ecclesiastes 12:6, God declares yet another spiritual portrait relating to our present “day of judgment”: “Or ever the silver cord be loosed, or the golden bowl [gullah:H1543] be broken, or the pitcher be broken at the fountain, or the wheel broken at the cistern.”


Lastly, Zechariah 4:3 adds, “And two olive trees by it, one upon the right [side] of the bowl, [gullah:H1543] and the other upon the left [side] thereof.”


A careful examination of each of the foregoing passages would reveal that they refer to the “Temple” (i.e., both Christ as well as His elect people, since God always works with and through them) and the Candlestick or “menorah” (again pointing to the Lord Jesus as the “Light” of the world), in addition to the two olive trees on either side of the “bowl of oil” (oil typifying the Holy Spirit) - picturing the two “witnesses” - or the “Law and the Prophets.”  


I’m going to have to stop right here, as we’ve come to the end of today’s study. Lord willing, in our next lesson we’ll continue examining the rest of this historical parable. 






JUDGES - PART 34

May 9, 2016


Welcome to Searching The Scriptures! This is Part 34 in the Book of Judges, and we are continuing our examination of the historical parable found in Judges 1:12-15,


“And Caleb said, He that smiteth Kirjathsepher, and taketh it, to him will I give Achsah my daughter to wife. {13} And Othniel, the son of Kenaz, Caleb's younger brother, took it: and he gave him Achsah his daughter to wife. {14} And it came to pass, when she came [bow’:H935][to him] that she moved  him [cuwth:H5496] to ask of her father  a field: and she lighted from off [her] ass; and Caleb said unto her, What wilt thou? {15} And she said unto him, Give me a blessing: for thou hast given me a south land; give me also springs of water. And Caleb gave her the upper springs and the nether springs.


Springs (Cont.)


In our last study we considered the word, “springs” (gullah:H1543), noting that it was found translated as “bowls” or “pommels” 8 times in 4 citations - 1 Kings 7:41-42, 2 Chronicles 4:12-13, Ecclesiastes 12:6, and Zechariah 4:3 - besides the 3 times it is rendered as “springs” in both Judges 1:15, and its parallel verse, Joshua 15:18. A careful examination of each of the foregoing passages reveal that they refer to the “Temple” (i.e., both Christ as well as His elect people, since God always works with and through them) and the Candlestick or “menorah” (again pointing to the Lord Jesus as the “Light” of the world), in addition to the two olive trees on either side of the “bowl of oil” (oil typifying the Holy Spirit) - picturing the two “witnesses” - or the “Law and the Prophets ” - in other words, the Gospel that God’s people proclaimed to the world through the divine organism of the churches and denominations, and later outside of that sphere of influence, by God’s decree.  In Zechariah 4:3 we learned the following regarding the “Candlestick”: 


“And two olive trees by it, one upon the right [side] of the bowl, [gullah:H1543] and the other upon the left [side] thereof.”


In Revelation 11:2-4 God makes reference to the “two olive trees”/ “two candlesticks” during the time of the Great Tribulation [typified spiritually by “forty and two months” (42)] as well as to the entire period of the church age (a symbolical “a thousand two hundred and threescore days” (1260)]:


“But the court which is without the temple leave out, and measure it not; for it is given unto the Gentiles: and the holy city shall they tread under foot forty [and] two months. {3} And I will give [power] unto my two witnesses, and they shall prophesy a thousand two hundred [and] threescore days, clothed in sackcloth. {4} These are the two olive trees, and the two candlesticks standing before the God of the earth.”


Of  Water


In Part 32, I made the comment that God frequently associates “water” with salvation. This is also the case here, in which  the term for “water” (mayim:H4325) in the phrase, “springs of water,” is connected with “blessing” (Berakah:H1293) in 4 other verses (besides here in Judges 1:15 and Joshua 15:18); let’s take a look at two of them:


During the dedication of the rebuilding of the wall of Jerusalem, Nehemiah 13:2 refers to the (historical) reason the Ammonites and Moabites were barred from entering the congregation: “Because they met not the children of Israel with bread and with water [mayim:H4325], but hired Balaam against them, that he should curse them: howbeit our God turned the curse into a blessing.”[Berakah:H1293]


And Isaiah 44:3 beautifully proclaims, “ For I will pour water [mayim:H4325] upon him that is thirsty, and floods upon the dry ground: I will pour my spirit upon thy seed, and my blessing [Berakah:H1293] upon thine offspring:”


Upper And Nether Springs


The last phrase in Judges 1:15 states: “And Caleb [picturing God the Father] gave her [Achsah - representing national Israel/the churches and denominations] the upper [`illiy:H5492] springs [mayim:H4325] and the nether [tachtiy:H8482] springs.”[mayim:H4325] 


The Upper


The expression “the upper” (`illiy:H5492) only appears in Judges 1:15 and Joshua 15:18; its root word, however, is `alah (H5927) - a term that we have run across before in this chapter - specifically in verses 1-4, where is is rendered as “go up,” “went up,” and “come up”


“Now after the death of Joshua it came to pass, that the children of Israel asked the LORD, saying, Who shall go up [`alah:H5927] for us against the Canaanites first, to fight against them? {2} And the LORD said, Judah shall go up [`alah:H5927]: behold, I have delivered the land into his hand. {3} And Judah said unto Simeon his brother, Come up [`alah:H5927] with me into my lot, that we may fight against the Canaanites; and I likewise will go with thee into thy lot. So Simeon went with him. {4} And Judah went up; [`alah:H5927] and the LORD delivered the Canaanites and the Perizzites into their hand: and they slew of them in Bezek ten thousand men.”


Parts 10-12 were devoted to examining this word (`alah:H5927) in some detail; I made the point at the time that God employs this very significant term 889 times in the Old Testament, and it is an excellent example of what I refer to as a word being “pregnant” with many shades of meaning, since it is translated in a variety of different ways, such as: come, bring, offer, ascend etc. up,” “offer,” “come,” “bring,” “ascend,” “go,” “chew,” “offering,” “light,” “increase,” “burn,” “depart,” “put,” “spring,” “raised,” “arose,” “break,” “exalted,” and in 33 other miscellaneous renderings. God also associates this term with the following topics throughout the Old Testament: 1) offering sacrifices, 2) daybreak, 3) smoke and flame, 4) prayer, 5) worshipping false gods, 6) obedience, 7) disobedience, 8) punishment for disobedience, 9) God’s anger, 10) spiritual deliverance, 11) a portrait of Christ, 12) other types and figures of Christ, 13) the “rapture,” 14) the exaltation of God, 15) the annihilation of the wicked, 16) humility, and 17) God’s promises to the elect.


Is There A Connection Between (`Alah:H5927) And “Springs”(Mayim:H4325)?


Since the word, “upper” (`illiy:H5492) is only used in Judges 1:15, and the parallel account in Joshua 15:18, the question arises: is there a possible connection between its root word (`alah:H5927) and “springs” (mayim:H4325) that might aid us in understanding its spiritual meaning? Let’s consider a few passages that contain both of these words:


In Proverbs 30:4 they are rendered as “who hath ascended up” and “springs” is translated as “the waters” - referring to the Godhead:“Who hath ascended up [`alah:H5927] into heaven, or descended? who hath gathered the wind in his fists? who hath bound the waters [mayim:H4325] in a garment? who hath established all the ends of the earth? what [is] his name, and what [is] his son's name, if thou canst tell?”


Jeremiah 10:13 (and its identical passage, Jeremiah 51:16) “When he uttereth his voice, [there is] a multitude of waters [mayim:H4325] in the heavens, and he causeth the vapours to ascend [`alah:H5927] from the ends of the earth; he maketh lightnings with rain, and bringeth forth the wind out of his treasures.”


In Jeremiah 47:2 we find a portrait of water used in conjunction with judgment: “Thus saith the LORD; Behold, waters [mayim:H4325]  rise up [`alah:H5927] out of the north, and shall be an overflowing flood, and shall overflow the land, and all that is therein; the city, and them that dwell therein: then the men shall cry, and all the inhabitants of the land shall howl.”


This is also the case in Ezekiel 26:19, “For thus saith the Lord GOD; When I shall make thee a desolate city, like the cities that are not inhabited; when I shall bring up [`alah:H5927] the deep upon thee, and great waters [mayim:H4325]  shall cover thee;”


When we understand that `alah (H5927) or “ascend” points spiritually to the resurrection of Christ, it helps us to gain a clearer picture of the spiritual dimension: “Waters” or “rain” can also refer to “doctrine,” (Deuteronomy 32:2) - the Gospel, or God’s Word. The term “vapours,” is more commonly rendered as “prince,” “captain,” “ruler,” or “chief” “ascending” or resurrecting, alluding to Christ Who is the “Prince” or “Captain” of the believers’ salvation as we read in Hebrews 2:10. The “wind” (ruwach:H7307) is rendered primarily as either “Spirit,” “wind,” or “breath,” pointing to God, the Holy Spirit. So we understand that this language symbolizes the Godhead, God’s Word, and God’s salvation and judgment program.


Lord willing, in our next lesson we will move on to the rest of Judges, chapter 1.





JUDGES - PART 35

May 11, 2016


Welcome to Searching The Scriptures! This is Part 35 in the Book of Judges, and we are continuing our study where we left off at verses 16-18 in chapter 1:


“And the children of the Kenite, Moses' father in law, went up out of the city of palm trees [Jericho] with the children of Judah into the wilderness of Judah, which [lieth] in the south of Arad; and they went and dwelt among the people. {17} And Judah went with Simeon his brother, and they slew the Canaanites that inhabited Zephath, and utterly destroyed it. And the name of the city was called Hormah. {18} Also Judah took Gaza with the coast thereof, and Askelon with the coast thereof, and Ekron with the coast thereof.” 


The Nether


What about the next word - “nether” (tachtiy:H8482)? How does it relate to “springs” (mayim:H4325) or “water” ? It is found 19 times, and is translated in the following ways: “low, lower, lowest parts or places,” as well as “nether parts” or “nether stone.” Consider some examples of its usage:


In Genesis 6:16 it describes the first floor of Noah’s Ark - the Ark representing  salvation: “A window shalt thou make to the ark, and in a cubit shalt thou finish it above; and the door of the ark shalt thou set in the side thereof; [with] lower, [tachtiy:H8482] second, and third [stories] shalt thou make it.”


Exodus 19:17 records the location - at the bottom of the mountain - where the Israelites were commanded by God to assemble themselves: “And Moses brought forth the people out of the camp to meet with God; and they stood at the nether [tachtiy:H8482] part of the mount.”


Deuteronomy 32:22 reveals that God associates this term  with “Hell,” (which is the “grave”): “For a fire is kindled in mine anger, and shall burn unto the lowest [tachtiy:H8482] hell, and shall consume the earth with her increase, and set on fire the foundations of the mountains.” 


This same truth is confirmed in Psalm 86:13 as well, “For great [is] thy mercy toward me: and thou hast delivered my soul from the lowest [tachtiy:H8482] hell.”


And Psalm 88:6 further adds: “Thou hast laid me in the lowest [tachtiy:H8482] pit, in darkness, in the deeps.”


In Psalm 139:15, the formation of a baby in its mother’s womb appears to be in view, but spiritually can be applied to all the elect as a whole (or individually), since the work of Christ on their behalf in the Atonement (before Creation) required His death and annihilation (“lowest parts of the earth” - which in the New Testament is described as the “heart of the earth”) as well as His resurrection, or “re-birth” - which is why He is called “the firstborn from the dead”: “My substance was not hid from thee, when I was made in secret, [and] curiously wrought in the lowest parts [tachtiy:H8482] of the earth.”


Lamentations 3:55 speaks of God’s judgment on Christ in the grave too, typified by the “low dungeon,” - which is reminiscent of Jonah 2:6, “...the earth with her bars was about me for ever…” or Joseph’s (another figure of Christ) experience in the prison, as 


Psalm 105:18 testifies: “Whose feet they hurt with fetters: he was laid in iron”:  “I called upon thy name, O LORD, out of the low [tachtiy:H8482] dungeon.”


From the foregoing citations we can see how this word exemplifies a downward direction which spiritually conveys death and annihilation, and is associated with prison and the destructive force of water - as in the Flood or in the whale’s belly. Returning to our parable in Judges 1:12-15 we see that spiritually Caleb (symbolizing God the Father) grants Achsah (who typifies national Israel and the churches and denominations) two springs - the upper as well as the nether springs. Spiritually, both springs have to do with water: the former - with the blessing of salvation; and the latter - with destruction, reminding one of what we read both in 1 Peter 3:18-21 as well as in 2 Peter 3:3-7 respectively,


“For Christ also hath once suffered for sins, the just for the unjust, that he might bring us to God, being put to death in the flesh, but quickened by the Spirit: {19} By which also he went and preached unto the spirits in prison; {20} Which sometime were disobedient, when once the longsuffering of God waited in the days of Noah, while the ark was a preparing, wherein few, that is, eight souls were saved by water. {21} The like figure whereunto [even] baptism doth also now save us (not the putting away of the filth of the flesh, but the answer of a good conscience toward God,) by the resurrection of Jesus Christ:”


“Knowing this first, that there shall come in the last days scoffers, walking after their own lusts, {4} And saying, Where is the promise of his coming? for since the fathers fell asleep, all things continue as [they were] from the beginning of the creation. {5} For this they willingly are ignorant of, that by the word of God the heavens were of old, and the earth standing out of the water and in the water: {6} Whereby the world that then was, being overflowed with water, perished: {7} But the heavens and the earth, which are now, by the same word are kept in store, reserved unto fire against the day of judgment and perdition of ungodly men.”


Judges 1:16-18


Let’s move on to Judges 1:16-18 again:


“And the children of the Kenite, Moses' father in law, went up out of the city of palm trees [Jericho] with the children of Judah into the wilderness of Judah, which [lieth] in the south of Arad; and they went and dwelt among the people. {17} And Judah went with Simeon his brother, and they slew the Canaanites that inhabited Zephath, and utterly destroyed it. And the name of the city was called Hormah. {18} Also Judah took Gaza with the coast thereof, and Askelon with the coast thereof, and Ekron with the coast thereof.” 


And The Children Of The Kenite, Moses' Father In Law


In these verses we learn some more information regarding the descendants of Moses’ father-in-law along with the children of Judah. The Kenites are first mentioned in verse 19 of  Genesis 15:8-21, in which God bequeaths the land of Canaan (a picture of the kingdom of God) to Abraham’s “seed” (pointing to Christ in the first instance, and to all the elect as well), in which He lists 10 nations (pointing to the “completeness” of that land), of whom the Kenites are the first ones mentioned:


“In the same day the LORD made a covenant with Abram, saying, Unto thy seed have I given this land, from the river of Egypt unto the great river, the river Euphrates: {19} The Kenites [Qeyniy:H7017], and the Kenizzites, and the Kadmonites, {20} And the Hittites, and the Perizzites, and the Rephaims, {21} And the Amorites, and the Canaanites, and the Girgashites, and the Jebusites.”


Went Up Out Of The City Of Palm Trees


The next phrase they we want to look at is: “And the children of the Kenite, Moses' father in law, went up out of the city of palm trees…” From Deuteronomy 34:3 and 2 Chronicles 28:15 respectively we learn that the “city of palm trees” refers to Jericho, 


Deuteronomy 34:3, “And the south, and the plain of the valley of Jericho, [Yeriychow:H3405] the city of palm trees, unto Zoar.”


And likewise, 2 Chronicles 28:15 adds,  “And the men which were expressed by name rose up, and took the captives, and with the spoil clothed all that were naked among them, and arrayed them, and shod them, and gave them to eat and to drink, and anointed them, and carried all the feeble of them upon asses, and brought them to Jericho, [Yeriychow:H3405] the city of palm trees, to their brethren: then they returned to Samaria.”


Why Are The Children Of Moses’ Father-In-Law Along With The Children Of Judah Going Up Out Of Jericho Into The Wilderness Of Judah, Which Is Located In The South Of Arad?


We wonder what is going on in these verses that speak about the descendants of Moses’ father-in-law along with the children of Judah “going up” out of the city of Jericho to “the wilderness of Judah,” which is located in the “south of Arad”? For one thing what are they doing in Jericho which was destroyed earlier by Joshua, as we read in Joshua 6:21, and 24-26,


And they utterly destroyed all that [was] in the city, both man and woman, young and old, and ox, and sheep, and ass, with the edge of the sword. ... {24} And they burnt the city with fire, and all that [was] therein: only the silver, and the gold, and the vessels of brass and of iron, they put into the treasury of the house of the LORD. {25} And Joshua saved Rahab the harlot alive, and her father's household, and all that she had; and she dwelleth in Israel [even] unto this day; because she hid the messengers, which Joshua sent to spy out Jericho. {26} And Joshua adjured [them] at that time, saying, Cursed [be] the man before the LORD, that riseth up and buildeth this city Jericho: he shall lay the foundation thereof in his firstborn, and in his youngest [son] shall he set up the gates of it.”


We are also aware that Joshua’s curse came to fruition during the reign of King Ahab (who reigned from 874 BC - 853 BC, according to Mr. Camping’s The Biblical Calendar Of History, pg. 17) as 1 Kings 16:33-34 discloses:


“And Ahab made a grove; and Ahab did more to provoke the LORD God of Israel to anger than all the kings of Israel that were before him. {34} In his days did Hiel the Bethelite build Jericho: he laid the foundation thereof in Abiram his firstborn, and set up the gates thereof in his youngest [son] Segub, according to the word of the LORD, which he spake by Joshua the son of Nun.” 


Moses’ Father-In-Law - A Man With Many Names


Moses’ father-in-law is also a curious figure as this man - “the priest of Midian” -  is assigned three different names in the Bible, and had 7 daughters, one of which, Zipporah, whom he gave to Moses in marriage as we read in Exodus 2:16 and 21,


“Now the priest of Midian [Midyan:H4080] had seven daughters: and they came and drew [water], and filled the troughs to water their father's flock. ... {21} And Moses was content to dwell with the man: and he gave Moses Zipporah his daughter.”


Apparently, the Midianites were the descendants of Midian, one of Abraham’s sons through Keturah, as we learn from Genesis 25:1-2


“Then again Abraham took a wife, and her name [was] Keturah. {2} And she bare him Zimran, and Jokshan, and Medan, and Midian [Midyan:H4080], and Ishbak, and Shuah.”


What Is “The Wilderness Of Judah” And Its Significance?


The question also arises: what is the “wilderness of Judah” and its spiritual significance? We know that Judah was given a large inheritance (which they shared with Simeon), from Jerusalem southward toward Egypt, and westward from the Dead Sea to the Mediterranean Sea as Joshua 15:1-12 elaborates in some detail. 


Well, it looks like I’ve raised more questions than I have answers, but we have come to the end of this study, so Lord willing, we will continue examining this passage in our next study.







JUDGES - PART 36

May 13, 2016


Welcome to Searching The Scriptures! This is Part 36 in the Book of Judges, and we are continuing our investigation of verses 16-18 in chapter 1:


“And the children of the Kenite, Moses' father in law, went up out of the city of palm trees [Jericho] with the children of Judah into the wilderness of Judah, which [lieth] in the south of Arad; and they went and dwelt among the people. {17} And Judah went with Simeon his brother, and they slew the Canaanites that inhabited Zephath, and utterly destroyed it. And the name of the city was called Hormah. {18} Also Judah took Gaza with the coast thereof, and Askelon with the coast thereof, and Ekron with the coast thereof.” 


We are attempting to understand some of the spiritual implications in this unusual passage regarding the descendants of Moses’ father-in-law along with the children of Judah who go into the “wilderness of Judah” and “dwelt among the people.” Then we learn that Judah and Simeon together (they shared a very large inheritance or lot) destroyed Zephath (renaming it Hormah, which means “destruction”), and also took the cities of Gaza, Askelon, and Ekron. 


The Names Of Moses’ Father-In-Law


In trying to identify who the “children of Moses’ father-in-law” are, we need to back up a bit and consider this man more carefully. In our previous study (Part 35) I mentioned the following, which bears repeating: Moses’ father-in-law known as  - “the priest of Midian” -  is assigned three different names in the Bible, and had 7 daughters, one of which, Zipporah, whom he gave to Moses in marriage as we read in Exodus 2:16 and 21,


“Now the priest of Midian [Midyan:H4080] had seven daughters: and they came and drew [water], and filled the troughs to water their father's flock. ... {21} And Moses was content to dwell with the man: and he gave Moses Zipporah his daughter.”


Apparently, the Midianites were the descendants of Midian, one of Abraham’s sons through Keturah, as we learn from Genesis 25:1-2


“Then again Abraham took a wife, and her name [was] Keturah. {2} And she bare him Zimran, and Jokshan, and Medan, and Midian [Midyan:H4080], and Ishbak, and Shuah.”

It’s noteworthy that God assigns three different names to Moses’ father-in-law: “Reuel” (or “Raguel”), “Jethro,” and “Hobab”:


We first read about “Reuel” (a compound term which apparently means “friend of God”) in Exodus 2:18,


“ And when they [his daughters] came to Reuel [R@`uw’el:H7467] their father, he said, How [is it that] ye are come so soon to day?”


The name, “Jethro” (Yithrow:H3503) [apparently signifying “his abundance” according to the Blue Letter Bible, but the root word it is derived from (yether:H3499) is generally rendered as “rest,” “remnant,” or “residue,” which I think is more accurate] appears next in 9 citations, such as Exodus 3:1,


“Now Moses kept the flock of Jethro [Yithrow:H3503] his father in law, the priest of Midian: and he led the flock to the backside of the desert, and came to the mountain of God, [even] to Horeb.


It is also found as “Jethro” in Exodus 4:18, even though this verse appears under both Strong numbers - H3503 and H3500 - although every other time H3500 is rendered as “Jether,” and pertains to a different person altogether:


“And Moses went and returned to Jethro [Yithrow:H3503] [Yether:H3500] his father in law, and said unto him, Let me go, I pray thee, and return unto my brethren which [are] in Egypt, and see whether they be yet alive. And Jethro said to Moses, Go in peace.”


Lastly, “Hobab” (again, apparently meaning “cherished”) surfaces in the following two passages:


Numbers 10:29 declares, “And Moses said unto Hobab, [Chobab:H2246] the son of Raguel the Midianite, Moses' father in law, We are journeying unto the place of which the LORD said, I will give it you: come thou with us, and we will do thee good: for the LORD hath spoken good concerning Israel.”


Judges 4:11 mentions him as well in connection with Heber: “Now Heber the Kenite, [which was] of the children of Hobab [Chobab:H2246] the father in law of Moses, had severed himself from the Kenites, and pitched his tent unto the plain of Zaanaim, which [is] by Kedesh.”


Judges 4:11 is actually a very helpful verse in that it provides a clue in identifying who “the children of Moses’ father-in-law” represent, since we read that Heber “had severed” (parad:H6504) himself  from the Kenites. Here are some examples of how God uses this word, “had severed”:


Genesis 13:9 recounts the separation of Abraham and Lot: “[Is] not the whole land before thee? separate thyself, [parad:H6504] I pray thee, from me: if [thou wilt take] the left hand, then I will go to the right; or if [thou depart] to the right hand, then I will go to the left.”


And in Genesis 25:23, God answers Rebekah’s question: “And the LORD said unto her, Two nations [are] in thy womb, and two manner of people shall be separated [parad:H6504] from thy bowels; and [the one] people shall be stronger than [the other] people; and the elder [Esau] shall serve the younger.” [Jacob]


Deuteronomy 32:8 further reveals, “When the most High divided to the nations their inheritance, when he separated [parad:H6504] the sons of Adam, he set the bounds of the people according to the number of the children of Israel.”


Lastly, in verse 17 of Ruth 1:16-17, Ruth solemnly declares her allegiance to Jehovah God, and to her mother-in-law, Naomi, and her people (representing God’s elect): “And Ruth said, Intreat me not to leave thee [Naomi], [or] to return from following after thee: for whither thou goest, I will go; and where thou lodgest, I will lodge: thy people [shall be] my people, and thy God my God: Where thou diest, will I die, and there will I be buried: the LORD do so to me, and more also, [if ought] but death part [parad:H6504] thee and me.”


So in the case of Heber - who had separated himself from the Kenites - and particularly the actions of his wife, Jael, we have grounds to assume that, at the very least, they typify the elect. We also learn more about the character of  Moses’ father-in-law from Exodus 18:1-12,


“ When Jethro, the priest of Midian, Moses' father in law, heard of all that God had done for Moses, and for Israel his people, [and] that the LORD had brought Israel out of Egypt; {2} Then Jethro, Moses' father in law, took Zipporah, Moses' wife, after he had sent her back, {3} And her two sons; of which the name of the one [was] Gershom; for he said, I have been an alien in a strange land: {4} And the name of the other [was] Eliezer; for the God of my father, [said he, was] mine help, and delivered me from the sword of Pharaoh: {5} And Jethro, Moses' father in law, came with his sons and his wife unto Moses into the wilderness, where he encamped at the mount of God: {6} And he said unto Moses, I thy father in law Jethro am come unto thee, and thy wife, and her two sons with her. {7} And Moses went out to meet his father in law, and did obeisance, and kissed him; and they asked each other of [their] welfare; and they came into the tent. {8} And Moses told his father in law all that the LORD had done unto Pharaoh and to the Egyptians for Israel's sake, [and] all the travail that had come upon them by the way, and [how] the LORD delivered them. {9} And Jethro rejoiced for all the goodness which the LORD had done to Israel, whom he had delivered out of the hand of the Egyptians. {10} And Jethro said, Blessed [be] the LORD, who hath delivered you out of the hand of the Egyptians, and out of the hand of Pharaoh, who hath delivered the people from under the hand of the Egyptians. {11} Now I know that the LORD [is] greater than all gods: for in the thing wherein they dealt proudly [he was] above them. {12} And Jethro, Moses' father in law, took a burnt offering and sacrifices for God: and Aaron came, and all the elders of Israel, to eat bread with Moses' father in law before God.”


 So we understand that God gave Moses’ father-in-law these three names: “friend of God,” “remnant,” and “cherished;” furthermore, we know that the number “3” signifies the “purpose of God,” if it has any spiritual meaning. We also see that he was held in very high esteem by Moses and the elders of Israel. Keep in mind that he was a priest, and “took a burnt offering” and “sacrifices” for God, as a priest would do for himself as well as for the people. Apparently this occurred prior to the ordinances regarding the building of the Tabernacle and responsibilities related to the priesthood, with the exception of the theophany of (Christ as) Melchizedek in Genesis 18, which predated this.


Well, we’ve run out of time today, so we will have to pick this up in our next lesson, Lord willing...God bless you richly.



  



JUDGES 1 - PART 37

June 17, 2016


Welcome to Searching The Scriptures! This is Part 37 in the Book of Judges, and we are continuing our investigation of Judges 1, starting from verse 19.


The Continued Expansion Into Canaan


The rest of the chapter from verses 19-36 deal with the continued conquest of the land of Canaan and you will note the recurring theme of disobedience, which we have discussed previously in the cycle of disobedience >judgment>deliverance>rest.  


Judges 1:19-20


We read the following in Judges 1:19-20,


“And the LORD was with Judah; and he drave out [the inhabitants of] the mountain; but could not drive out the inhabitants of the valley, because they had chariots of iron. {20} And they gave Hebron unto Caleb [of the tribe of Judah], as Moses said: and he expelled thence the three sons of Anak.”


And He [Judah] Drave Out [The Inhabitants Of] The Mountain


We’re curious as to the spiritual significance of Judah driving out the [inhabitants of] the mountain, yet being unable to drive out the inhabitants of the valley, because they had chariots of iron. In the historical context, the mountain in view was part of the inheritance of Judah, as promised to Caleb in Joshua 14:12-14,


“Now therefore give me [Caleb] this mountain, [har:H2022] whereof the LORD spake in that day; for thou [Joshua] heardest in that day how the Anakims [were] there, and [that] the cities [were] great [and] fenced: if so be the LORD [will be] with me, then I shall be able to drive them out, as the LORD said. {13} And Joshua blessed him, and gave unto Caleb the son of Jephunneh Hebron for an inheritance. {14} Hebron therefore became the inheritance of Caleb the son of Jephunneh the Kenezite unto this day, because that he wholly followed the LORD God of Israel.”


Moreoover, Joshua 11:21 explains that Joshua had already expelled the Anakims from the mountains: “And at that time came Joshua, and cut off the Anakims from the mountains [har:H2022], from Hebron, from Debir, from Anab, and from all the mountains [har:H2022] of Judah, and from all the mountains [har:H2022] of Israel: Joshua destroyed them utterly with their cities.”


These Anakims are described in Numbers 13:27-33, when the 12 spies returned from searching out the land of Canaan for 40 days - apart from Joshua and Caleb, and because they were “walking” by sight - and not by faith, God consigned them to walk around in the desert for the next 40 years.


“And they [the spies] told him [Moses], and said, We came unto the land whither thou sentest us, and surely it floweth with milk and honey; and this [is] the fruit of it. {28} Nevertheless the people [be] strong that dwell in the land, and the cities [are] walled, [and] very great: and moreover we saw the children of Anak there. {29} The Amalekites dwell in the land of the south: and the Hittites, and the Jebusites, and the Amorites, dwell in the mountains: and the Canaanites dwell by the sea, and by the coast of Jordan. {30 }And Caleb stilled the people before Moses, and said, Let us go up at once, and possess it; for we are well able to overcome it. {31} But the men that went up with him said, We be not able to go up against the people; for they [are] stronger than we. {32} And they brought up an evil report of the land which they had searched unto the children of Israel, saying, The land, through which we have gone to search it, [is] a land that eateth up the inhabitants thereof; and all the people that we saw in it [are] men of a great stature. {33} And there we saw the giants, the sons of Anak, [which come] of the giants: and we were in our own sight as grasshoppers, and so we were in their sight.”


This account reminds of David and Goliath (a portrait of Christ and Satan), in which David declares under divine inspiration to Goliath (another “giant” in his own right) in 1 Samuel 17:45-47,


“Then said David to the Philistine, Thou comest to me with a sword, and with a spear, and with a shield: but I come to thee in the name of the LORD of hosts, the God of the armies of Israel, whom thou hast defied. {46} This day will the LORD deliver thee into mine hand; and I will smite thee, and take thine head from thee; and I will give the carcases of the host of the Philistines this day unto the fowls of the air, and to the wild beasts of the earth; that all the earth may know that there is a God in Israel. {47} And all this assembly shall know that the LORD saveth not with sword and spear: for the battle [is] the LORD'S, and he will give you into our hands.” 


Chariots Of Iron


There is also a similar account regarding the children of Joseph (the tribes of Ephraim and Manasseh) who faced the same kind of problem in Joshua 17:16-18.


“And the children of Joseph said, The hill [har:H2022] is not enough for us: and all the Canaanites that dwell in the land of the valley have chariots of iron, [both they] who [are] of Bethshean and her towns, and [they] who [are] of the valley of Jezreel. {17} And Joshua [who was of the tribe of Ephriam] spake unto the house of Joseph, [even] to Ephraim and to Manasseh, saying, Thou [art] a great people, and hast great power: thou shalt not have one lot [only]: {18} But the mountain [har:H2022]  shall be thine; for it [is] a wood, and thou shalt cut it down: and the outgoings of it shall be thine: for thou shalt drive out the Canaanites, though they have iron chariots, [and] though they [be] strong.


In Judges 4:1-3, the Israelites also faced a similar dilemma with Sisera (typifying Satan) and his “nine hundred chariots of iron”:


“ And the children of Israel again did evil in the sight of the LORD, when Ehud was dead. {2} And the LORD sold them into the hand of Jabin king of Canaan, that reigned in Hazor; the captain of whose host [was] Sisera, which dwelt in Harosheth of the Gentiles. {3} And the children of Israel cried unto the LORD: for he had nine hundred chariots of iron; and twenty years he mightily oppressed the children of Israel.”


In the foregoing passages, God is associating “chariots of iron” with the Canaanites who were unsaved) - and thus identify with Satan’s (portrayed by Sisera)  kingdom - who heads up all of the non-elect in his kingdom. This is also seen with respect to the “iron furnace” - a term in Deuteronomy 4:20 - which God uses to characterize the spiritual bondage to sin and to Satan, typified by the Israelites in Egypt for 400 years: 


“But the LORD hath taken you, and brought you forth out of the iron [barzel:H1270] furnace, [even] out of Egypt, to be unto him a people of inheritance, as [ye are] this day.”


The number “400” (4 X 100) points to the “ universal completeness” of the spiritual bondage that mankind is under, due to the Fall in the Garden of Eden; additionally 40 X 10 represents the “completeness of testing” that Israel - typifying God’s elect people - were forced to endure, while in Egypt, and then during their 40-year wilderness sojourn. 


The fact that Israel encountered such direct opposition from the kingdom of Satan during the conquest of Canaan was a result of their own disobedience to God’s specific directive, as God had declared to them through Moses in Deuteronomy 9:1-3,


“Hear, O Israel: Thou [art] to pass over Jordan this day, to go in to possess nations greater and mightier than thyself, cities great and fenced up to heaven, {2} A people great and tall, the children of the Anakims, whom thou knowest, and [of whom] thou hast heard [say], Who can stand before the children of Anak! {3} Understand therefore this day, that the LORD thy God [is] he which goeth over before thee; [as] a consuming fire he shall destroy them, and he shall bring them down before thy face: so shalt thou drive them out, and destroy them quickly, as the LORD hath said unto thee.”


Furthermore, as Joshua was approaching the end of his ministry, he reminded the Israelites of this same admonition and their failure to comply, according to Joshua 23:3-9 and 11-13,


“And ye have seen all that the LORD your God hath done unto all these nations because of you; for the LORD your God [is] he that hath fought for you. {4} Behold, I have divided unto you by lot these nations that remain, to be an inheritance for your tribes, from Jordan, with all the nations that I have cut off, even unto the great sea westward. {5} And the LORD your God, he shall expel them from before you, and drive them from out of your sight; and ye shall possess their land, as the LORD your God hath promised unto you. {6} Be ye therefore very courageous to keep and to do all that is written in the book of the law of Moses, that ye turn not aside therefrom [to] the right hand or [to] the left; {7} That ye come not among these nations, these that remain among you; neither make mention of the name of their gods, nor cause to swear [by them], neither serve them, nor bow yourselves unto them: {8} But cleave unto the LORD your God, as ye have done unto this day. {9} For the LORD hath driven out from before you great nations and strong: but [as for] you, no man hath been able to stand before you unto this day. {10} One man of you shall chase a thousand: for the LORD your God, he [it is] that fighteth for you, as he hath promised you. {11} Take good heed therefore unto yourselves, that ye love the LORD your God. {12} Else if ye do in any wise go back, and cleave unto the remnant of these nations, [even] these that remain among you, and shall make marriages with them, and go in unto them, and they to you: {13} Know for a certainty that the LORD your God will no more drive out [any of] these nations from before you; but they shall be snares and traps unto you, and scourges in your sides, and thorns in your eyes,  until ye perish from off this good land which the LORD your God hath given you.


This same warning is repeated in Judges 2:1-3 as well,


“And an angel of the LORD came up from Gilgal to Bochim [“weeping”], and said, I made you to go up out of Egypt, and have brought you unto the land which I sware unto your fathers; and I said, I will never break my covenant with you. {2} And ye shall make no league with the inhabitants of this land; ye shall throw down their altars: but ye have not obeyed my voice: why have ye done this? {3} Wherefore I also said, I will not drive them out from before you; but they shall be [as thorns] in your sides, and their gods shall be a snare unto you.


Psalm 106:34-40 also sadly records, 


They did not destroy the nations, concerning whom the LORD commanded them: {35} But were mingled among the heathen, and learned their works. {36} And they served their idols: which were a snare unto them. {37} Yea, they sacrificed their sons and their daughters unto devils, {38} And shed innocent blood, [even] the blood of their sons and of their daughters, whom they sacrificed unto the idols of Canaan: and the land was polluted with blood. {39} Thus were they defiled with their own works, and went a whoring with their own inventions. {40} Therefore was the wrath of the LORD kindled against his people, insomuch that he abhorred his own inheritance.


Once again we see the spiritual parallelism between Old Testament Israel and its counterpart - the institutional churches and denominations of the New Testament - to tolerate various doctrinal “high places,” tantamount to not rooting out the inhabitants of the land 100%, which subsequently provoked God’s judgment upon both of these divine organisms.


Judges 1:21


We read the following account in Judges 1:21, and immediately we again see the failure on the part of Benjamin to drive out the Jebusites from Jerusalem (a spiritual picture of the churches and denominations), which is a further reminder that during the church age the “tares” (representing the non-elect) coexisted with the “wheat” (typifying the elect), as we learn from the parable that bears that name, 


“And the children of Benjamin did not drive out the Jebusites that inhabited Jerusalem; but the Jebusites dwell with the children of Benjamin in Jerusalem unto this day. 


Matthew 13:24-30 reveals, “Another parable put he forth unto them, saying, The kingdom of heaven is likened unto a man which sowed good seed in his field: {25} But while men slept, his enemy came and sowed tares among the wheat, and went his way. {26} But when the blade was sprung up, and brought forth fruit, then appeared the tares also. {27} So the servants of the householder came and said unto him, Sir, didst not thou sow good seed in thy field? from whence then hath it tares? {28} He said unto them, An enemy hath done this. The servants said unto him, Wilt thou then that we go and gather them up? {29} But he said, Nay; lest while ye gather up the tares, ye root up also the wheat with them. {30} Let both grow together until the harvest: and in the time of harvest I will say to the reapers, Gather ye together first the tares, and bind them in bundles to burn them: but gather the wheat into my barn.”


On that note, we will have to bring today’s study to a close, but Lord willing, we will continue our examination of Judges 1.