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A LOOK AT THE FIRST CENTURY CHURCH

Part 7

Review

Heb 4:12

12 For the Word that God speaks is alive and full of power [making it active, operative, energizing, and effective]; it is sharper than any two-edged sword, penetrating to the dividing line of the breath of life (soul) and [the immortal] spirit, and of joints and marrow [of the deepest parts of our nature], exposing and sifting and analyzing and judging the very thoughts and purposes of the heart.      AMP

So if the emphasis of God is on His Word then it would stand to reason that words are extremely important. Thus a study of specific words and their origins is essential to understanding the importance of not only their meaning but the implications that they have on our lives and how we respond to what we believe to be true.

 

What we have discussed in the previous 6 meetings will be covered tonight. We will take one final glance at what has been presented and hone in on the scriptures tonight and cover the God ordained worship services for the next few weeks.

 

In all of the books of the New Testament, the writers assume that everyone reading either the gospels or the letters, understand what is being written about. For the most part, almost all of the writings are not explained or have minimal reference to the scriptures. It becomes, therefore necessary to give due credence to the Old Testament to gain a deeper understanding of the intentions of the authors in the writings of the New Testament.

The Gospels and Epistles are written for the benefit of both Jews and Gentiles. To the Jews the life and purpose of Jesus of Nazareth is explained in the light of the scriptures and to the Gentile it is an overview or summary of the entire Old Testament. On the one hand, Jews would understand and in the case of the Gentile believer, it would become a helpful guide for understanding the character and will of God for all mankind and link the life of Jesus to the plan of God for all. It is necessary to then have both functioning harmoniously by giving close attention to both. This is not for the purpose of coming under the “law” but rather to understand the purpose of the law. What is considered and misrepresented as law is the Torah and all the scriptures. The word Torah is correctly translated “teachings” and Paul calls it so in his letter to the “ekklesia” at Galatia.

Gal 3:21 Is the law then against the promises of God? God forbid: for if there had been a law given which could have given life, verily righteousness should have been by the law. 22 But the scripture hath concluded all under sin, that the promise by faith of Jesus Christ might be given to them that believe. 23 But before faith came, we were kept under the law, shut up unto the faith which should afterwards be revealed. 24 Wherefore the law was our schoolmaster to bring us unto Christ, that we might be justified by faith. 25 But after that faith is come, we are no longer under a schoolmaster. 26 For ye are all the children of God by faith in Christ Jesus. 27 For as many of you as have been baptized into Christ have put on Christ. 28 There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither bond nor free, there is neither male nor female: for ye are all one in Christ Jesus. 29 And if ye be Christ's, then are ye Abraham's seed, and heirs according to the promise.      KJV

So, what this means is this. No, we do not have to be bound to the “law” but rather we learn from it the magnificence of God and His character that is expressed in His Son, Yeshua HaMashiach, Jesus the Messiah. Not only do we have this excellence of the knowledge of the Son of God, but God Himself comes and dwells in us and teaches us all things. We need the knowledge of the scriptures as a whole, not fragmented. If we take the New Testament and try to live it, we will never understand it if we do not consider the Old Testament. The Old Testament will prove frustrating without giving due credence to the New Testament. They are Siamese twins with only one heart and they are inseparable.

I will end on this. The following occurrences of the word "scripture" or "scriptures, are in the New Testament. Remember, the entire New Testament is founded on the Tenach or Hebrew Torah, Psalms, Prophets along with various extra Biblical writings such as The Book of Enoch(Jude). Hebrews draws heavily on Leviticus as well as other traditional sources available in the first century. Hebrews is interesting in that it assumes its readers are familiar with some of the discourse on the temple and various items associated with the forms of worship that took place there.

 

2 Ti 3:12 Yea, and all that will live godly in Christ Jesus shall suffer persecution. 13 But evil men and seducers shall wax worse and worse, deceiving, and being deceived. 14 But continue thou in the things which thou hast learned and hast been assured of, knowing of whom thou hast learned them; 15 And that from a child thou hast known the holy scriptures, which are able to make thee wise unto salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus. 16 All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness: 17 That the man of God may be perfect, thoroughly furnished unto all good works. KJV

2 Pe 1:16 For we have not followed cunningly devised fables, when we made known unto you the power and coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, but were eyewitnesses of his majesty. 17 For he received from God the Father honour and glory, when there came such a voice to him from the excellent glory, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased. 18 And this voice which came from heaven we heard, when we were with him in the holy mount. 19 We have also a more sure word of prophecy; whereunto ye do well that ye take heed, as unto a light that shineth in a dark place, until the day dawn, and the day star arise in your hearts: 20 Knowing this first, that no prophecy of the scripture is of any private interpretation. 21 For the prophecy came not in old time by the will of man: but holy men of God spake as they were moved by the Holy Ghost.            KJV

We are going to dive into covenant, the festivals and the God ordained form of worship in the next few weeks.

 

 

This is only the beginning of this journey with our living God.

                DO NOT TELL ANYONE "Bob Berning said to leave your church." That is not what this is about!

o   Am I telling you to convert to Judaism?                                Absolutely not!

o   Am I suggesting leaving your current fellowship?                 Absolutely not!

o   Am I suggesting maybe looking into the scriptures to learn for yourself and seek the fellowship of like minded believers?                                                YES

"As Christians, we read what we believe, but do we believe what we read?" 6