One True Church

One True Church Part 15

“And the law shall go forth from Zion”. Isaiah 2:4, Micah 4:2 Here is the sounding of the death knell for any denomination. Since no denomination even CLAIMS to have started in Jerusalem, without any other argument offered, this one argument dismisses all the claims they could ever have for being the original church Jesus started!! How important is this claim to have begun in Jerusalem? In the book of Galatians we have Paul and Peter at odds as to the doctrine of circumcision. Galatians 2:1-21 There was a sect of the Lord’s church that tried to make physical circumcision a part of the plan of salvation. Their doctrine was ‘he that believeth, is baptized, and physically circumcised, shall be saved’. They wanted physical circumcision a part of the preaching of the New Testament Church so the Jew would leave them alone, thinking the Church of Christ to be just another sect of Judaism!! This would cause the Jews not to take a stand against the Lord’s Church. This was intended to be taught in every Gentile congregation the apostle Paul had started.
Peter, the first apostle to preach the gospel to the uncircumcised Gentile, had not had them physically circumcised. Galatia had predominately Gentile members. Peter had been worshipping with the Church of Christ at Galatia where most of the male membership was Gentile. Suddenly, a group of the brethren came from Jerusalem preaching this new doctrine. They must have had a lot of power behind them for when they came Peter dis-associated himself from the Gentile brethren making pretense that he agreed with their doctrine. When the apostle Paul saw the hypocrisy of Simon Peter, he “withstood him to the face, because he was to be blamed.” Galatians 2:11 If this had been allowed, the gospel of Christ would have lost the support of Deity!! PHYSICAL CIRCUMSISM, YOU SEE, WAS THE SIGN Christ gave Abraham that would cause every male born of his seed to remember and know that the promise Christ had given Abraham was true and genuine. If physical circumcism was still demanded that would mean the Messiah had not yet come. If not, why not: if the Messiah had come the reason for physical circumcism was over!
For some strange reason (unknown to those who do not study the scriptures) Paul and Peter were directed to return to Jerusalem. The why was not given in Galatians. Jesus had directed while here with the disciples; “if any of you disagree on earth as touching any thing that they shall ask, it shall be done for them of My Father which is in heaven.” Matthew 18:20 This makes it rough of Peter being the first Pope, but Jesus had foreseen problems arising and directed how to resolve them!! Coupled with His directive that all new doctrine was to be preached FIRST in Jerusalem, to let this go and not be stopped, this would not only be a NEW doctrine, but a contrary doctrine. This was taken in hand, the Holy Spirit ‘bade Paul and Peter to return to Jerusalem’ for what was the ONLY council to ever be held under the auspicious of the Holy Spirit. There could be no others, the apostles were dead and gone and they alone had the seat on Thrones to rule and judge-legislate-hand down and bind upon mankind, for the Master!! Matthew 19:28
Now, in Jerusalem, the Holy Spirit takes charge, Acts 15, and Peter, Paul, and the whole church gets a letter, handwritten by James the step-brother of Christ, solving the whole problem. Those “angels from heaven” (Jews who were teaching something other that what the apostles taught) were soundly defeated in promoting error as truth. Any NEW doctrine had to be first preached in Jerusalem. Denominationalism has NEVER BEEN taught, first in Jerusalem, it was first preached where it began!!

One True Church Part 14

What describes a thing, where it began, in what year, what name it wears, and who was present when it began will satisfy the honest heart about which church to belong!!
All of us use this as a means of recognizing persons, countries, and societies making sure those societies are not clandestine. If I wanted to verify the genuineness of any product, person, or thing I would use these criteria, would I not? That being true, these criteria will identify the ONE true church Jesus Christ brought into existence and eliminates all those begun by man!!
As stated last week, the Church of Christ is the only church prophesied in the scriptures. This may seem cultish to some, egotistic to others, and ridiculous to even more, YET, the proof of such a statement will satisfy any truth-seeking soul. Isaiah 2:2, Micah 4:2, Luke 24:47-49, Acts 1:4-6 all teach this fact. Zion in the scriptures is the hill country around Jerusalem. The church started in Zion (to prove this to yourself, read the cited scriptures. Any church that did not start in Jerusalem then, is NOT the Bride of Christ, which He named the Church of Christ!! Not only did she start in Jerusalem as prophesied, she came in the right century!! Jesus stated: “there are some of you that stand here, that shall not taste of death until you have seen the kingdom come with power.” Mark 9:1 The church Christ started had to have started in the lifetime of the apostles!! This truth is inescapable. The fact is that all of the apostles were alive when the church came down from God out Heaven except Judas who had killed himself when his plot to stop Jesus from dieing was foiled. All the apostles belonged to the Church of Christ; NONE belonged to any of today’s denominations!! Fact: no denomination existed while the apostles were on the earth, the Roman Catholic under the emporer Constantine did come into existence until 313 AD. It is 200 years too late to be the church Christ started!! All the apostles were alive, except Judas, on the day of Pentecost, AD33, at 9:00am that Sunday morning!! Constantine had not even been born, Martin Luther (Lutheranism) was not the figment of anyone’s imagination, Charles Wesley (Methodism), John Smythe’s (Baptist) great-great-great-great grandparents were still 229 generations away from arriving on the planet, so the same with Ellen White (7th Day Adventist), Charles Russell (Jehovah’s Witness), John Knox (Presbyterian), peeping Joe Smith (Morons,sic, or Later Day Saints) and you can go on to name the others!!
Since none of the church originators were alive when the apostles were on the earth and NONE of their denominations existed, how could anyone take them seriously, follow their doctrines, and belong to them INSTEAD of the church that actually began in the first century, the sad thing is denominationalism DOES NOT EVEN CLAIM to have begun in the first century!! (The Baptist may claim John the Baptist started their denomination, but they lie about a lot of things!!) History verifies the existence of the Church of Christ in the 2nd, 3rd, 4th, 5th, 6th, and on, show us ONE place it mentions the originators of any denomination in the 1st century!! “In vain, do they worship Me teaching for doctrines the commandments of men.” Matthew 15:9 “Beware, lest any man spoil you through philosophy and after vain deceit, after the tradition of men, after the rudiments of the world, and NOT AFTER CHRIST.” Colossians 2:8
In order to have a different church one must have a different doctrine they teach!! Every denomination has that DIFFERENT doctrine, NO it is not found in the Bible; they have to write their own Bible or creed book to support their damnable lies. In this, they compete with the Lord Jesus for the souls of men!! They are fools!!

One True Church Part 13

Jesus said, “Upon this rock, I will build My Church..” Matthew 16:16-18 There are many who claim to love the Lord, but because of this clear statement, declare Him a liar!! By agreement of nouns and verbs, there can be only as many churches built by Jesus Christ as there rocks, yes or no? Did Jesus mean to say what He said or did the apostle record His words incorrectly? How many rocks were there upon which Jesus said He would build? If there was ONE rock (statement of truth), there then can be only ONE church, yes or no?
No other church ever started with a pronouncement by God, the Father!! What an introduction!! It was not done in secret, nor under the cover of night, nor as a whisper campaign, god, the Father declared what man would have never confessed; “This, is My beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased, HEAR YE HIM”!! Matthew 17:5 What was the rock? The Greek uses a word that would describe something so large and gigantic, it would be un-moveable. It would be the basis upon which Christ would build? Peter had just confessed Christ as the “Christ, the Son of the living God.” Jesus responded, “Blessed art thou, Simon Bar Jonas, flesh and blood hath not revealed this to thee, but My Father which is in Heaven.” What did this statement mean: it meant Jesus would be the NEW lawgiver, the NEW high priest, the NEW sacrifice, the NEW SOVERIGN LORD that was to be worshipped, and His authority and IT ALONE was all that had to be adhered to, no other law or testament was to be obeyed.
That upon which a house is built is usually called a foundation. The foundation has to be prepared. It has to close, that is it has to meet on all four sides. It has to be planned. No man ever built a house that he first did not set down and pre-determines its purpose. No house ever came together by accident. That which Jesus built was planned, prepared, did not come into existence by a mere co-incidence, nor was it built as it went. Jesus emphatically DID intend to build a NEW church when He started the Church of Christ, in AD 33, in the city of Jerusalem!! He NEVER intended to put a patch on an old garment. Christianity was NEVER intended to be another sect of Judaism. With denominationalism, this is not the case. No denomination that I know about was planned, prepared for before it came about, and was altogether an accident in coming to be. Most denominations I know about came about trying to reform another denomination that already existed!! They were an accident, not a planned development. Constantine did not intend to bring about a new church at the Council of Nicene, he was trying to bring the Church of Christ under his control so he could salvage his kingdom, and He knew there was only ONE church that should exist. The faithful church did and never allowed this to be true!! Martin Luther did not plan on bringing into existence the Lutheran church; he meant only to reform the Roman Catholic. King Henry VIII did not intend to bring about the Episcopalian denomination; he only wanted to marry Anne of Bolin. The Pope said “No!” Henry said, “Watch me”. John Wesley was not trying to bring into existence the Methodist church; he was trying to put some life in the old Episcopalian church in which he was a priest. The Separatist movement of the late 1500’s never intended to start a new denomination, all they wanted was to worship God as they deemed proper in England where the King of England reigned supreme and would only allow his denomination to exist.
No other church started in Jerusalem!! All the Old Testament prophets prophesied that the church was to start in the city of Jerusalem. Isaiah 2:2-4, Micah 4:2.

One True Church Part 12

One of the hardest things some people have in understanding God is the question often asked; “is there really just ONE church”? Some people consider you and I bullies, cultists, egotists, and partially insane who think Christ is married to just ONE church, that only those in that ONE church have a chance of gaining that eternal home. They think God UNFAIR and we His children irrational and a little beside themselves who take His Word as our proof for this belief, after all “surely not ALL the people in ______ denomination are lost, are they?” These fair-minded, people loving kind are heard to say; “My cousin is a ‘good man’ and surely God will not send him to Hell just because he does not see the scriptures as you, will He?” I warn you our reply is often mighty disturbing. But, let me invite you into a conversation that occurred on this exact subject and you see the ploys of Satan and the answers to their questions.
“My best friend is a good woman, she has been in the Baptist Church all her life; if there is anyone who is better that she, I do not know them.” Answer: “Is she good enough to burn in Hell for eons of endless existence with you by her side?? Is she better than Jesus Christ, He was brash enough to claim, ‘I am the way, the truth, and the life, NO MAN cometh to the Father, but by Me.’ He will died for you, He will call you in death; He said ‘He that believes and is baptized shall be saved’!! Do you not consider her life as one which every day calls Jesus Christ a liar? (Oh, I forgot that is unkind by those who do not study God’s Word and want to FEEL GOOD!!) Question: “Jesus would NEVER have been so unkind as to have said something like this, let alone have such come from His lips”!!, they contend. “My cousin just does not like the Church of Christ’ doctrine; are you sure you are justified in making the above statements, will you not run us away from the Church of Christ by making such statements, you are not much like Christ, are you? This seems so hard-hearted and judgmental”!! Answer: “Now wait a minute, you have picked on the best friend I have ever had in my life, Jesus Christ, you have called into question His motives, and you expect me not to defend Him?? When did your cousin get better, smarter, more qualified to know what MUST BE DONE than the written document called the Bible? How can you justify taking his word for something AGAINST the inspired Word of God? If he is that good, he will be too good to go to Heaven, Heaven is for the people Jesus had to die to save, that had to obey what Jesus said for them to do, and who considered it the greatest honor of their existence when Jesus added them to the Church of Christ!! Why should you be so concerned about every-ones feelings but Jesus, the God of Heaven and Earth?? Did this cousin you are so considerate of die for you? If he did, that is sad, his death will not make any difference in your soul’s station in eternity; but this Jesus—His death has made ALL the difference!! Are you sure you are choosing the right man to lead you into the shores of timelessness?? I recommend you follow the Man who created EVERYTHING”!!
“Strive to enter in at the strait gate: for wide is the gate, and broad is the way, that leadeth to destruction, and many there be which go in thereat: because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that findeth it.” Matthew 7:13-14 Question: “My cousin will not attend with me.” Answer: “Will they be with you beyond this life? “For it had been better for you not have known the way of righteousness, that, after they have known it, to turn from the holy commandment delivered unto them.” 2 Peter 2:21. They will not be with you in Hell, either, your fate will be far worse than theirs, you cannot win by your standards, only Jesus can win.

 

One True Church Part 11

Among the ancients (Jacob as an example) and those of a not to far distant past, men paid monies, gave something of value when he asked for a woman’s hand in marriage. If a man had beautiful daughters his bank account was greatly enhanced, it was the way some families kept “soul and body together”. No man of stature would dare approach his future father-in-law without such a handsome fee. It was a way of assessing the value of the love he had for her. Christ bought His bride with His life’s blood. No higher price could be paid. Her value, in His sight, was without equal. This being true, Christ had as many brides as He had life’s with which to buy Her!! He married His bride before He created the heavens and the earth, but made an announcement of it to all mankind in Jerusalem, AD 33, at 9:00am on Sunday morning. Again, He married only ONE bride.
To make it so plain that none could misunderstand, Christ also called her His body. He did not mean to give some the understanding that it was some one else’s body, The bride’s body becomes the property of her husband upon marriage. “And He is the head of the body, the church: who is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead; that in all things He might have preeminence.” Colossians 1:18 I find that hard to misunderstand, but some do not, they think if it says ONE it is just kidding or that all religious bodies make up His complete body and their church is a part of that make-up. This may sound plausible until we come the verse which reads: “but now are there many members, yet but ONE body.” (emphasis mine) 1 Corinthians 12:20
In first Corinthians 12, all know Paul is discussing the relationship amongst the various and diverse members of the human body; does any think there is more than ONE body under discussion? He talks about the eye, hand, feet, head, ear, but they are ALL apart of just ONE BODY. (If you cannot see this, you are in need of serious help and this article may not help you!) “But now hath God set the members every one of them in the body, as it hath pleased Him.” 1 Corinthians 12:18 He concludes with the fact (undisputed by any and everybody) there is ONE AND BUT ONE BODY!! If this is not satisfactory and you want more proof, read Romans 12:4. “For as we have many members in one body, and all members have not the same office: So we, being many, are one body in Christ, and members one of another.” How can that be misunderstood? In First Corinthians 12: 12-13 Paul writes: “For as body is one, and has many members and all the members of that ONE body: so is Christ. For by one Spirit are we all baptized into one body, whether we be Jews or Gentiles, whether we be bond or free: and have been all made to drink into one Spirit.” You cannot think this is describing everybody that has a body, it describes ONE AND ONLY ONE, it is that ONE that people must be baptized to be saved to enter!
Ephesians 2:16 reads: “And that He might reconcile both (Jew and Gentile) unto God by the cross, having slain the enmity thereby.” I purposely left out what would make this verse satisfactory to the Devil and any denominational preacher IF the Holy Spirit had so done, they would have been agreeable. Christ made us reconciled to God in ONE body!! The body is His Church, He has only One, for her He paid the last true measure of devotion, His life’s blood, and for her He is returning!! I will cite the verse correctly: “And that He might reconcile both unto God in one body by the cross, having slain the enmity thereby.” This verse defines, dates, and distinguishes this body from any other—Christ reconciled (brought two warring parties, God and the sinner) by the church that came into existence in the first century—no denomination started, then!!

One True Church Part 10

We have studied many of the parables of the Old Testament and found vital teachings EVERYWHERE we studied to backup the premise for these articles: there is only one. We could continue through the Old Testament for parable after parable and continue to show this premise to be true, but in fear of tiring some of the readers, we will press on to more internal proof from the New Testament.
The Church of Christ is the only church that could and did come from the side of Christ!! In John 19:34 the record reads: “But one of the soldiers with a spear pierced His side, and forthwith came there out blood and water.” This would have gone unnoticed had not the blood of God’s sacrifices been so pre-dominant throughout both Testaments. The first offering recorded was that which caused the life of the innocent and it should be expected, so the last!! Christ is the FIRST AND LAST and ONLY sacrifice to ever be accepted by God, the Father. All the sacrifices of the Old Testament were made to God the Son to appease the Father’s wrath because of sin. No sacrifice of the Old Testament was EVER presented to His Holiness, the Father.
It is extremely interesting that the Hebrew word for blood is the word dam, a word which also is used to describe the “juice of the grapes”. In Genesis 49:10-11 when Jacob was blessing his sons before his death, to Judah he proclaimed: “The scepter (authority to rule) shall not depart from Judah (remember the Kings of Israel from David on were from Judah), nor a lawgiver from between his feet (that is come out from the womb of one of his daughters, Mary) until Shiloh (the name of the Prince of Peace, Christ) come; and unto Him shall the gathering of the people be. Binding his foal unto the vine (Jesus had the new ass on which no man had ridden), and his ass’s colt unto the choice vine; he washed his garments in wine (blood), and his clothes in the blood (juice) of grapes.” No wonder the Lord’s Supper has the juice of the grape (fruit of the vine) as a symbol to represent the blood of Christ!!
There are two main categories for the use of the word blood in the Old Testament. One, a violent shedding of blood usually resulting in death such as during war or in murder. Two, the shedding of blood while making a sacrifice to God which always resulted in a death. Blood was required because “life is in the blood” we are told in Leviticus 17:11. Life is holy to God, it is His to give and take away, it makes the body of man function, therefore NO MAN has the right to take blood from another, medical assistance excepted.. If he does, he is taking the “role” God left for Himself in dealing with mankind. All the blood of a sacrificed animal had to be drained and distributed (Exodus 12:7, Leviticus 1:5, 4:6, Deuteronomy 12:24). Eating of blood is forbidden in both Testaments (Leviticus 3:17, 17:10-13, Acts 15:29) because blood is LIFE, no man can partake, absorb, take into himself another’s blood, he has not that right!!
Christ traded His life for ours. His blood, life was what PURCHASED His bride, Acts 20:28, it was what RANSOMED the “many”, Matthew 20:28, the “many” are they who have been baptized into Christ, Galatians 3:27. Only those, the many, who have been baptized into Christ, have met His blood, THE TRADE HAS BEEN MADE!! IF ONE DOES NOT MEET THAT SPECIFIED TRADING TOOL, GOD CANNOT TRADE!! For example: we trade $5 for $5 worth of merchandise. The $5 bill is our trading item, if we have only $1 we cannot buy, trade, and exchange one for the other. God made Christ’s life’s blood His tool of choice as a trading item, He will not use another, if man does not meet that “blood” he will be damned. Mark 16:16

One True Church Part 9

Again, I must bring to your attention that parables, which are so common in the teaching ministry of Jesus while on the earth, were also what He used when He was the God of the Old Testament called Jehovah. Exodus 6:3 These parables have often been reduced to “children bed-time stories” or Sunday School stories to entertain our young and start them on a Biblical understanding of God. They ALL pointed to a New Testament truth. This would be lost IF WE DO NOT use them as Author-intended!!
The life of Jacob is full of such. Jacob’s two marriages, having already been discussed, is just a pattern. When Jacob fled from Esau he spent his first night ALONE. Oh! What an agony for a momma’s boy. What is interesting about this “place” he spent the night was what it was. It was a certain place, you know like the place Abraham “happened” upon when he offered his “only begotten son” for a sacrifice at the command of God. In this “certain place” Jacob rested on his journey to Syria. The Hebrew word leads to the thought it was a place of waiting, a place of hope. Here, with God as his canopy and stones as his pillow he dreamed. All my life I was taught of Jacob’s ladder. Unfortunately it has been named incorrectly. Maybe it should have been called HOPE. On this ladder were the messengers of God (angels) descending (bringing the message from God) down to man and angels (messengers of God) ascending (having the privilege to be with God in the Heavens!!) At the top of the ladder (the pathway to Heaven and peace) stood one lone figure, the Great I AM. He had a message to give mankind. “Thy seed (Christ) shall bless all the families of the earth.” Genesis 28:14
This was a great revelation to a scared boy with no friends in the world, all alone, in a strange place, without direction. God, Christ in the New Testament, wanted Jacob to know He was with him even though his travels took him away from everyone he loved. (In fact, Jacob NEVER saw the face of his beloved father and mother, again. So someone else MUST sustain him.) I don’t think by now I have to spell out the obvious; Jacob is like those of us who have had to forsake father, mother, sisters, and brothers for the Kingdom of Heaven’s sake. We might have to be the ONLY one in our families who get in the Ark (the Church of Christ) to make it to the other side, the rest are in “feel-good” churches who think “one is as good as the other”. But tell me, all alone, no friends, no hope, where would you expect Christ to house those who are His?? You’re right!!, He adds them to His church (the one God LEADS to). Acts 2:47 We might be the ONLY ONE IN THE WORLD who is a member of the Church of Christ, bought by the blood of God’s only begotten Son (Acts 20:28) left on the planet, yet holding true to God’s word and promises, like Noah, we will arrive home after awhile!! Of course it helps to know that the word Bethel (Genesis 28:19) means “house of God”. House is the New Testament equivalent church and God (the name of a nature, not an individual, has to be defined by the action mentioned. This being called God is the One who would DIE for His bride, the church!!). In the New Testament, the God who “purchased His church with His own blood, is Christ.” Acts 20:28, Ephesians 5:23-25 The “certain place” Jacob spent the first night was in, at the Church of Christ—the place of Hope!!, that to whom Christ adds. YES, THERE IS ONLY ONE!! Ephesians 4:3-4
Again, Jacob states a truth, “this is none other but the gate of Heaven”. Paul wrote Timothy and nailed down this point when he, by the inspiration of the Holy Spirit wrote; “until I come, that you may know how you ought to behave yourself in the house of God, which is the church of the living God (Christ)…1 Timothy 3:15 There is only ONE!!

One True Church Part 8

If you read last week’s blog, you found the story of the Jewish enslavement purposeful and fulfilling. Some may have thought we lost our way in this series (and maybe we have and do not know it! ha!), but I do not think that is true. Sometimes “asleep at the wheel” semi drivers are extremely dangerous on the open road (for that matter so is everyone else). Such is the case with those who do not know WHY the Lord gave us all the parables in the Old Testament without calling them by the name parabolis.
Sometimes you have to dig a little deeper to get the best fruit of the crop; we are told to “search the scriptures, for in them you think you have eternal life; and they are they which testify of Me”, John 5:38-39, and to “study to show ourselves approved”, 2 Timothy 2:15, and “these are written for our learning, that through patience and comfort of the Scriptures we might have hope.” Romans 15:4 Now, if you will just take a second and think you will see the trap you have fallen into that this line of teaching forever and irrevocably teaches is: in ALL the examples/parables, THERE IS ONLY ONE thing being taught, whether it be of peoples, nations, or individuals that the explanation is used and that will fit!! The Greek word for “study” is spoonae and it means to dig with all your might, for the value is within. The Greek word for “approve” is dokimos and it means to recognize, be approved and accepted in the furnace of adversity. The Old Testament stories/parables/Sunday School messages were NEVER meant for a simple cursory reading which required no thought or digging into!! Sometimes the easy is the hardest.
When we come to the story/parable of Esau and Jacob, this is no exception. These two brothers represent two peoples and how they were to accept the gospel of Jesus Christ. Esau as the type of Israel had the birthright by being the first-born son who mocked, treated with no concern, and was very indifferent to what it meant. He could have cared less that the Messiah was to come from his ancestry. When offered a minimal exchange for the birthright, Esau traded immediately because he had a selfish interest to take care of; he was hungry and had not been successful at the hunt. Jacob, on the other hand, had a great, overwhelming desire for the birthright his brother so foolishly ignores. Also, before the boys came from Rebecca, God had told her and her alone that the older was His choice: “JACOB have I loved and ESAU have I hated.” Romans 9:13 The Jew was complaining that God had treated them badly and had cheated them out of their inheritance without any consideration. They felt sorry for themselves and complained because they had gone through all the grief and misery for 1500 years just so the Messiah could come through their blood line that would bless ALL NATIONS. Genesis 15 This pity had to cease when they had revealed to them the reason for the story/parable, Sunday School message they had know from their youngest memories!! God MADE choice BEFORE either boy had done anything good or evil, (by the way, it was quite all right with them when THEY were the recipients of the special providence of God in selecting Jacob who was their father in the flesh, they even thought God was JUST in so choosing—now, they did not think as highly of the message as they once did thinking themselves the ONLY ONE!!) Notice the message ONLY ONE?? Maybe Ishmael and Esau had a complaint BUT God had a PLAN!! See how easy this explains the Jewish dilemma? Thanks to brother Paul and the Holy Spirit for making us dig into this in Romans 9. You cannot complain when you have had your chances for 1500 years and blown it!! Without “the Seed” the Jew was nothing.

One True Church Part 7

For years I had heard the story of Egyptian bondage. For years I had searched the Old Testament for reasons this happened. I looked for a reason. The closest thing I could come up with was Abraham’s improper offering of a sacrifice in Genesis 15. I was missing the point as have most others who have read these stories. God was telling Abraham HOW He was going to accomplish the bringing in of the Christ-child. Abraham had grown a little concerned that his “heir” was not going to be. So, like the rest of the world, Abraham tried to help God out a little. “Behold to me thou hast given no seed: and, lo, one born in my house is my heir. And, behold, the word of the Lord came unto him, saying, ‘This shall not be thine heir; but he that shall come forth out of thine won bowels shall be thine heir.” Genesis 15:4 Once we know what is being discussed, we can get in on the discussion! Abraham believed but God was going to show him how He would accomplish the promise.
Why did the house of Israel go into Egyptian bondage? Most people do not know, yet they tell the story over and over, again. Again, God deals in types to explain the anti-type (the physical to explain the spiritual). It seemed unduly unfair for the house of Israel to go into punishment as this. We have felt sorry for them for years, yet, we have never known the plan of God. “A picture is worth a thousand words”, they tell us and a story, allegory, parable is even better!! Do not ever begin to think Jesus only used parables in His earthly ministry, He used them throughout the Old Testament, we just have not seen them as such. A parable, they tell us is “an earthly story with a heavenly meaning”, true, so what is the story meant to be told by the 440 years of Egyptian bondage of the Jewish people?? To understand the parable/story/allegory intended, we have to again go BACK to the text and see the story line. God was telling Abraham HOW He would accomplish His purpose, an heir was coming through Abraham’s wife (even though she would be impregnated for 40 more years) and NO substitute would be acceptable!
The story of Egyptians bondage is no different that the truth of our bondage in sin before we were led out of this bondage by the servant of God, Jesus Christ. Our plight is/was no worse for us than it was for them. Like them, we are in a strange land, “this world is not our home IF we are children of God.” Being enslaved to sin is no worse than being enslaved to some Egyptian Lord; most of us just do not see it that way.
Moses came, born in the death threat of male children under 2 years old, as did our Lord. When prepared by God, Moses returned to lead his people, they rejected him. He worked miracles (called plagues) to prove his calling. So did our Lord. John 14:11, 15:24 Moses led them across the Red Sea, Christ leads us into His blood in the watery grave of baptism. 1 Corinthians 10:1-4, Mark 16:16 Moses was the great law-giver, Christ the greater. As Moses led the children of Israel 40 years in the desert preparing them for entrance into the promised land so Christ sent the Holy Spirit and worked with the Church of Christ 40 years before they were free from Judaism and “go into all the world”. Moses required ALL those who were apart of his covenant to be circumcised, Christ requires ALL of us who are apart of His covenant to be spiritually circumcised as we are baptized into Christ. Colossians 2:11-13 As those who crossed the Red Sea were released from their Egyptian bondage so all who are baptized into Christ are forgiven of their past sin. This is not coincidental; this was given so God could explain HOW He was to accomplish the salvation by the heir of Abraham. Galatians 3:13-16 Don’t feel sorry for the Jew; feel sorry for yourself IF YOU HAVE NOT OBEYED THE GOSPEL!!

One True Church Part 6

The types and shadows of the Old Testament tell how God intended to carry out His Will from the beginning until the end or as the Book relates: “known unto God are all His works from the beginning of the world.” Acts 15:18 As we learned from the story of Noah and the Ark last week, God is not shy about His plan neither does He depend upon man’s approval. Numbers were and are never in His eye. When He decides, He commands!! He destroyed the world by water the first time, the second time He will bring this Earth to a fiery end and she will never again exist. 2 Peter 3:8-11
God first dwelt with the seed of Seth, then known as Ebonites, then the ancestry of Abraham, known as Israelites, and finally He has brought His Son into the world to redeem all of mankind through His bride, the Church of Christ!! He told us of this great plan through the life of a young man named Jacob.
Jacob traded his older brother Esau a bowl of lintel soup for the most valuable commodity then in existence; his birthright. Esau did not value his birthright and mocked God when he disposed of it for so little. (This is exactly how the Jewish nation did their favored status with God trading it for the affairs of this world!) Rebecca, Jacob’s mother had been told of God that the “elder shall serve the younger”. Genesis 25:23 As far as the record shows, Rebecca was the ONLY person given this information (later she took steps to fulfill the wishes of God by interfering in the bestowal of the birthright). Jacob had to leave home for his brother Esau swore vengeance against him. When he arrived at Rebecca’s brother’s house he found the woman of his dreams. It was “love at first sight”. Genesis 29:10-11 Then begins a drama that most people have never enjoyed for they do not understand its significance. Jacob and Laban made a deal so Jacob could work to earn Rachel’s hand in marriage. What seemed unfortunate for Jacob but revealing for Bible students, Jacob worked the first 7 years for the wrong woman, he got Leah, the older daughter of Laban. “Leah was tender eyed; but Rachel was beautiful and well-favored.” Genesis 29:17 Rachel pleased Jacob while Leah was really a means to an end. Without Rachel Jacob would have never been fulfilled!! What is more interesting is that Leah bore Jacob most of his sons, Rachel bearing only two-Joseph and Benjamin. One would think this would sway Jacob in his preference but it never did.
This story is told many times to our kids in the Sunday School classes and left as a tale of the inequity among men. The REAL story is never told. As with Jacob, Jesus Christ was married twice, to two women. The first woman was Israel, Jeremiah 3:1-25, like Leah, never the woman he loved, the second was Rachel, the woman of his desires. As with Jacob, Christ lived with and had children by Rachel yet NEVER was she the bride of choice. When He came into this world He came seeking the woman He would be with in eternity. Israel was NEVER THAT WOMAN and can NEVER BE THE WOMAN OVER WHICH CHRIST CHOOSES TO REIGN!! The pre-millennial preachers of our time have missed the REAL woman of Christ’s affections. This was shown us in Jacob! Remember, don’t miss the main reason, purpose of the story, it solves a lot of problems some have with Israel and the second coming of Christ!! Oh yes! there was only ONE bride that suited Christ, it is the Church of Christ!
Later, the children of Jacob and Leah were found in slavery in Egypt. Again, God was telling us of His plan. Coming into Egypt as the most favored of peoples the Jew outlived the Pharaoh that “knew Joseph”. This story like the others is told our children and unfortunately, they do not know what it is about.