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Genesis 50:1 - Exodus 2:10

All day I couldn’t get out of my mind what would it have felt like to grow up in a country that you are a stranger in? Even though you were born there and possibly died there, you were still a stranger in the land... Clustered in a designated part of the country, you keep your customs, your language and your belief system. Yes, a few might venture off into the other part of the land and may even assimilate into the predominant culture, but most are grouped together within the same community unchanged for hundreds of years. Imagine being a stranger in the land of your birth. Imagine having to be removed from your promise in order to maintain your identity to receive that promise.

Israel/Jacob is called the church in the wilderness (Acts 7:38), the called out ones, the ek-klay-see'-ah. The church was called out to be in the world but not of or apart of the world.

What happened to Israel back in the day, is what we are experiencing in this day. We are the called ones, the ones given the promise yet separated from that promise while we mature in becoming Christ like. We are strangers in a strange land given a mandate to separate, not isolated, from the world. While strangers in a strange land we are to be to those we live amongst, a peculiar people, a royal priesthood, a chosen people (1 Peter 2:9).

The pressure and resentment those who are born in a country where they are estranged, “aliens,” to assimilate is undeniably strong. Just think of how nuts people who live in the United States get when they think that a group of people are not becoming “American” enough for their taste. We cry out for closed borders, we demand that these immigrants/aliens get on board, learn the language, and stop consuming “our government programs,” without contributing anything to society and the tax roles. Think about it, that more than likely was spewed out on Israel while she grew to be a mighty number in Egypt. Do you think they might have had a “Egyptian” only cry when creating directional signs and such like?

The same pressures exerted on Israel to confirm, the same pressure we in the United States exert on the foreign born, even when they are born here to confirm is the same pressure Believers are met with while trying to keep on the path God has predestined all those that call on His name to walk.

Israel, the church in the wilderness: what things can we learn from her, what “type” and “shadow” can we find in her that we can relate to the messed up churches we find ourselves attending?

Grace and peace,
Ramona

For me there is no greater verse that brings me comfort than Matthew 16:18 for I am reminded that Christ is going to build HIS church, not I. As a pastor, it is a tremendous relief that He is in control of what we are doing as well as the results. Praise the Lord!

Blessings,

Manny

It seems so barbaric that pharoah ordered the midwives to kill ALL of the Hebrew male children, just because Israel was becoming more populous then Eygpt. For I give you good doctrine, forsake ye not my law. I love the Transfiguration when Jesus becomes white as light.

My family moved around to much when I was little for me to attend church regularly, then I moved to MN and attended a wonderful church for highschool and college, the sanctuary was shaped like Noah's Ark. For the last several years I have been attending a Presbyterian church in FL that has a large contemporary service, I am an usher and help in the nursery on Sundays. I could not imagine NOT attending church every week.

I guess a major reason why Israel was embalmed because Joseph had to transport his body days or even weeks to Cannan to bury him in Abraham's field.

What do you think?

Lots of wonderful soul food today.
i am totally ministered to by the forgiveness Joseph showed his brothers. This is the most powerful story to me in the scriptures of how to walk through hurt that others have done to us.

And also, I appreciate so much how Joseph was able to see God's hand even in the midst of the atrocities committed against him.
it reminded me of proverb 16:7 that says, "when a man's ways please the Lord, he makes even his enemies to be at peace with him."

There's a new-ish book called, "Why We Love the Church" that is a very good read. It talks about what the church does right.

Also, here is a link to a great song regarding the confession of Peter, "You are the Christ..." Incidently it also talks about the songwriter growing up in a church! :)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eAzGsImqKWQ&feature=related

Sorry, I don't know how to imbed it so you can just click it!!

Raeann,

"When Israel blessed Judah was he refering to Christ in his blessing?"

Gen 49:10 "The sceptre shall not depart from Judah, nor a lawgiver from between his feet, until Shiloh come; and unto him [shall] the gathering of the people [be]".(KJV)

Used the KJV because in the literal Hebrew the word Shiloh is repeated.

"until that he sahll come Shiloh, Shiloh...."

Something repeated twice in Hebrew is for emphasis of something that should be paid attention to, or is important.

Some say this is Solomon, but the people are already a nation under David before Solomon's reign.

Definitions of Shiloh vary with Scholars:
Have seen:
"peace, tranquility"

Vulagtes bible's translation: "he who is to be sent"

Hebrew baby names: his gift, he who was sent

Strong goes through a bunch of translations of Shiloh in Gesenius's Lexicon at this link:
http://www.blueletterbible.org/lang/lexicon/lexicon.cfm?Strongs=H7886&t=KJV#

I believe you are correct that it is the Messiah, Jesus Christ because of the subsequent verses talking about ass colt (Zech 9:9) tied to choice vine (Jesus from John 15), and the idea of red stained garments, wine and grapes from Isaiah 63 and Rev 19.

All talking about the Messiah, Jesus Christ.

Some commentators say that those verses are about the abundance in Judah, and perhaps the prophecy has a double meaning to include Judah's propserity (tribe).

However , I believe the long range implication of the blessings is referring to Christ - for the reasons above.

I was raised in a family that believed in going to church regularly and so I did that until I was about 16 years old. Then I stopped going for about 8 years and even went through a period where I questioned my faith in God. Then, thankfully I felt God calling me to bring up my children in the belief of God and to take them to church (real evidence of Proverbs 22:6). However, it wasn't until I had been back to regular participation for several years that I began to develop a personal relationship with Jesus Christ and really began living for him. My suggestion to someone who is not participating as part of a church regularly would be to read the bible every day, praying first that the Holy Spirit would guide you to understand what you read. I believe that will create a hunger in you for the Word of God, that will also make you desire to become part of a church, where you can grow in your spirit and live the life that Christ calls His followers to live. I have been a part of several different churches,in various denominations and believe that there is a body of Christ that all Christians fit into at some time. I don't think that everyone can find one church body and fit in there forever; some people can do that, others cannot. Thankfully there are many churches available in the U.S. today and so if one doesn't work, you can try another until you find one that fits you and you fit it. I am not trying to advocate church hopping, because I believe that relationships require work, and being part of a church is a relationship. But some relationships end up not working, no matter how hard you try, and so we can't let that be the reason for not being part of a church - the devil would win if we all give up that easily. Being part of a church really matters to me because it allows me to feel connected to others who also believe in Christ and to fuel my spirit in a different way than I can do by reading my bible and praying on my own. I believe that God designed us to be connected with other human beings and I haven't found any connection that works better than the Church. I truly appreciate my church because it is constantly growing as it reaches out to people in the community who either don't know Jesus or aren't part of a church. This is a major part of what the church is about and it helps build my faith that God is still working in the salvation of sinners. Praise the Lord!

Matthew 16:13-17:9

Matthew 16

Peter's Confession of Christ

Three things:

18And I tell you that you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church,
1) Rock - In Aramaic the word for rock would have been the same. However, the Bible (NT) is written in Greek for a reason. The richness of the Greek language much of the time has more than one Greek word for our English word.

This is the case here. Peter's rock is a stone. The church's rock is a massive stone, large crag, just plain big. So what is Christ building His church on?

Eph 2:20
built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, with Christ Jesus himself as the chief cornerstone.

God's Household - believers - assembly - Church is built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets. It is not the men themselves - but what they taught and proclaimed - God's Word.

2) and the gates of Hades will not overcome it.

Gates here in the Greek is the gates that keep people in. These are the prison gates of Hades, not hell. It does not say Gehenna. Hades is the place before the cross where everyone's soul went after death. Had a good side, a large seperation, and a bad side.

The prison gates of Hades will not be able to overcome it (the church). Why? because death was defeated at the cross, and the believers when they die will now go to heaven. Hades will not prevail over the church. Although wicked will still be there until Gehenna is created and they are cast into that different place.

3) I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven; whatever you bind on earth will be[e] bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth will beloosed in heaven."

The keys are not only for Peter but also the apostles, and in Matthew 18:18 - the church.

What are the keys to the kingdom? They are the teachings of knowledge based on God's word.

Luke 11:52 "Woe to you experts in the law, because you have taken away the key to knowledge. You yourselves have not entered, and you have hindered those who were entering."

Peter, the apostles and even the church will have the ability to teach correctly God's Word, which will allow people entry into heaaven.

"bound" thing is badly translated. Most scholars agree it is "shall have been bound in heaven" (perfect tense). Same for loose. Based on teaching of God's Word whatever is bound or loosed - Heaven is in agreement, because His will is being done on earth and in heaven. We have no authority it is all based on the acceptance or rejection of God's Word.

Matthew 17

Transfiguration

Unfortunately there is a man made chapter break here between 16 and 17. There is no such break in Mark 9 and Luke 9.

In Matthew 16:27 it says Son of man will come in His glory. In 16:28 it says some here will not die till they see the Son of man coming in His kingdom. Kingdom can also be translated "royal power".

That is exactly what happened when the three apostles saw Christ transfigured. They saw Christ in His glory and royal power. Why three apostles - it takes two to three witnesses in Jewish law to verify an incident.

John 1:14 And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth.
======================================================
- Don't be hard on Peter here. It was the feast of tabernacles, and offering to build three shelters/tents was not that crazy an idea.

- Moses, Elijah, Jesus. Representing the Law, the Prophets, and the New Covenant?????? Perhaps.
======================================================
Pre-Trib People

If you hold the PRe-Trib view it is also symbolic.
- Moses - representing the dead believers.
- Elijah - who was carried up alive to be with God representing the people raptured.
- Apostles - representing the believers on earth after the rapture.
- Christ - the vehicle of it all in His Glory.

Joseph

Gen 50:17
"'This is what you are to say to Joseph: I ask you to forgive your brothers the sins and the wrongs they committed in treating you so badly.' Now please forgive the sins of the servants of the God of your father." When their message came to him, Joseph wept." NIV

The picture is now complete. Joseph had wanted to be reconciled to his brothers, but this is the first time it is recorded that they wanted to be reconciled to him. A picture of salvation. God wants us to be saved, but we must come humbled, acknowledging our sin, and ask forgiveness. Just like Joseph promises to provide for his brothers, Jesus will provide for us.

Exodus 1:8
Then a new king, who did not know about Joseph, came to power in Egypt.

That is the answer as to why the Jews became slaves in Egypt.

The records are horrible from that time, as their seems to be a transition in dynasties. Theories abound:

1) Two Egyptian dynasties who did not get along, and all previous records and deeds to land were nullified.
2) Hyksos (foreigners) ruled during Joseph, and Egyptians took over doing same as in number 1.

or it may be as simple as "Keil and Delitzch" say, that the translation may be the "new king" cared not to know about Joseph. The issue was the large growth.

Jews were settled in the north of Egypt and that is where the foreign attacks would come through in this period. The fear was that this large mass of people would join up with foreigners and help invade Egypt.

There are a few more theories that seem absurd, and the problem is - no one knows because of the lack of data. Apparently no two Egyptologists can agree on anything in this period of time.
======================================================
Moses

Quick Hits:

Satan is nothing if not persistent. Satan has always either tried to kill off, persecute and eliminate God's people. If satan can accomplish that - then God is a liar, his promises can not be fulfilled, and satan wins. That is why this technique is employed even to this day regarding Israel. Israel is secular today, but if satan can eliminate the Jewish race (as a people) there will be no remnant for God to save at Second Coming. Again the idea is to make God a liar.

Failing that satan tries to corrupt God's people. Sometimes it looks like satan is winning - that he may have God in a checkmate, but there is always a move to be made. God always preserves a remnant even in the worst of His chosen people's times.

In God's plan it is a long match, but in the end - no one human or angelic can stand up against God and win. Even when it looks like Satan is winning - Joseph is correct. What you meant for evil - God meant for Good.
======================================================
New Pharoah

Here the plan is to cap the population of the chosen people and reduce it by marrying off the daughters to Egyptians and diluting the bloodlines. the children by lineage would be Egyptians. Would take a while - but that is the plan.

Satan did not know that the midwives were in God's pocket, that Pharoah's daughter would have a soft heart, that in God's plan the boy would even be returned to his mother for nursing and growth.

Why?

In Hebrew it cannot be determined at what age Moses was turned over to Pharoah's daughter. I believe it is long enough for this faithful Jewish mother to instill the oral tradition of God's Word into Moses. At night the mother would tell Moses the story of the Garden, the promise of the redeemer, The promises to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, and the story of how Moses' people came Egypt and were saved from extinction by famine.

Conjecture on my part, but it would explain why Moses had a heart for His people and knew God. If Moses had been raised as an infant in Pharoah's court - it is unlikely that Moses would have the feelings above about His native people and God.

Frederick Y

"I guess a major reason why Israel was embalmed because Joseph had to transport his body days or even weeks to Cannan to bury him in Abraham's field."

Sounds logical to me. Of note is that the Egyprians embalmed Israel at all - it shows the high regard that the pharaoh held Joseph. The mourning of 70 days was two less than the maximum mourning period in Egypt. Pretty heady stuff for a man (Israel) that most of Egypt never knew.

"But many that are first shall be last and the last shall be first."

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