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7 Promises and a Call to Personal Holiness

7 Promises and a Call to Personal Holiness

Our world is in trouble and the bulk of that trouble stems from a lack of holiness. The words of Paul the Apostle, in his letter to the Church at Rome, ring true of America, perhaps more so than when Paul penned them, “There is no fear of God before their eyes (Romans 3:18). If we continue to read that letter we find that there is no one who seeks after God (Chapter 3 and Verses 10-17)  but we do not need to recap the entire epistle.

God has raised up His Church as a bulwark against wickedness. There is a particular message that is needed from the Church more than ever before, a call to personal holiness. What I mean by that is a disciplined set apartness to the Lord God and working toward His glory among the people we encounter every day.  There is frequently the question of what holiness looks like in practicality; I have found that the 7 Promises from Promise Keepers to be a good example.

PROMISE 1 HONOR GOD

A Promise Keeper is committed to honoring Jesus Christ through worship, prayer and obedience to God’s Word in the power of the Holy Spirit.

Proverbs 3:5-6

Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He will make straight your paths.

Hebrews 12:28-29

Therefore let us be grateful for receiving a kingdom that cannot be shaken, and thus let us offer to God acceptable worship, with reverence and awe,  for our God is a consuming fire.

 

PROMISE 2 BROTHERHOOD

A Promise Keeper is committed to pursuing vital relationships with a few other men, understanding that he needs brothers to help him keep his promises.

Ecclesiastes 4:12

Two are better than one, because they have a good reward for their toil.

Proverbs 17:17

A friend loves at all times, and a brother is born for adversity.

 

PROMISE 3 INTEGRITY

A Promise Keeper is committed to practicing spiritual, moral, ethical, and sexual purity.

Psalm 119:9-11

How can a young man keep his way pure? By guarding it according to your word. With my whole heart I seek you; let me not wander from your commandments! I have stored up your word in my heart, that I might not sin against you.

Proverbs 11:3

The integrity of the upright guides them, but the crookedness of the treacherous destroys them.

 

PROMISE 4 FAMILY

A Promise Keeper is committed to building strong marriages and families through love, protection and biblical values.

Proverbs 22:6

Train up a child in the way he should go; even when he is old he will not depart from it.

Psalm 127:3-5
Behold, children are a heritage from the Lord, the fruit of the womb a reward. Like arrows in the hand of a warrior are the children of one’s youth. Blessed is the man who fills his quiver with them! He shall not be put to shame when he speaks with his enemies in the gate.

 

PROMISE 5 SERVING

A Promise Keeper understands that Jesus calls him to be His hands and feet, serving others with integrity. He purposely lifts up the leadership of the church and his nation in prayer.

Philippians 2:3-4

Do nothing from selfish ambition or conceit, but in humility count others more significant than yourselves. Let each of you look not only to his own interests, but also to the interests of others. 

Matthew 5:16

In the same way, let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven.

 

PROMISE 6 UNITY

A Promise Keeper is committed to reaching beyond any racial, denominational, generational, and cultural barriers to demonstrate the power of biblical unity.

1 Corinthians 1:10
I appeal to you, brothers, by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that all of you agree, and that there be no divisions among you, but that you be united in the same mind and the same judgment.
Ephesians 4:1-3
I therefore, a prisoner for the Lord, urge you to walk in a manner worthy of the calling to which you have been called, with all humility and gentleness, with patience, bearing with one another in love, eager to maintain the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace.

 

PROMISE 7 OBEDIENCE

A Promise Keeper is committed to influencing his world, being obedient to the Great Commandment and the Great Commission.

Mark 16:15

And He said to them, “Go into all the world and proclaim the gospel to the whole creation…”

1 Peter 3:15

…but in your hearts honor Christ the Lord as holy, always being prepared to make a defense to anyone who asks you for a reason for the hope that is in you; yet do it with gentleness and respect. 

 

We will examine these further in the future. For now, I encourage you to meditate on these promises

Review of A Private Commentary on Scripture

Review of A Private Commentary on Scripture

There are many good commentaries out there, though not as many are written from a Dispensational Standpoint as I would like. One answer to that problem comes from our favorite guest teacher, James D. Quiggle, Th.M. It is a very helpful commentary series written from a Dispensational Standpoint. Why is such a thing important? In Dispensationalism we focus on a consistent interpretation and understanding across all segments of theology. You might be tempted to say does not everyone do that, but some do not. That, though, is for another day.

 Why is this commentary set important? This commentary is very practical- that is to say that it is not full of lofty words and  ideas, which my grandfather used to call four dollar words. It is clear and concise, easily accessible to any Christian, from the gentleman who came to Christ this morning all the way to the grandmother who has prayed for countless hosts of missionaries.  This is what I enjoy most about when James provides lessons for my readers- he writes not only as a teacher but as an Elder who has walked the Scripture for decades and calls the reader to be his student and to understand the Bible in a way that might have not been before. The Bible is meant to be understood and James excels in opening the Scripture to the reader.

Which translation does James use here? Like many commentators, James does his own translation. His translation reads very close to the English Standard Bible, which if memory serves correctly, is the translation he uses for teaching, His translation is what is called essentially literal, meaning that it is as close to a word for word translation as possible without it being unintelligible.

The translation is the most important choice when studying the Bible; the first question to address in study is, simply, what does it say? I would like to point out that James uses a number of excellent translations in addition to his own so that the reader might get the broadest possible meaning of the text.

What is included and is anything missing? Besides the verse-by-verse commentary, there is a fairly in-depth introduction. James treats several of the things unique to John and his Gospel Account.  He also gives considerable background information regarding the audience etc.

I do have two items that I wish were included but the fact that they are missing is neither bad nor good. It is just a fact. I would like to see a much more detailed outline and specifically with regard to teaching through the Bible. The simple fact is that most commentary users are pastors, Sunday school teachers etc. Most commentaries are lacking in giving a teaching outline.  Further, I would like to see a section on Interpretive Challenges.  Any teacher attempting to prepare helpful lessons will doubtlessly encounter points of view that attack the Scripture and it would he very helpful to have even a small treatment of these issues.

This commentary series is very well footnoted. There is so much to learn about each book and James has given us a tremendous number of footnotes not just for the purposes of citing references but primarily to provoke further study.

Overall Impression/thoughts

In personal study, I have found the material provided to be quite helpful. The most common question which I receive is “Who should use it?” I will tell you very simply and pointedly, this should be used by any person who is going to teach the Bible. If you have a wife, you should be teaching her the Bible and you should have this commentary set. Same goes if you have children. Do you teach Sunday School? This commentary series is for you. Are you a missionary? You guessed it; you should have this commentary set. Bible college students, seminarians, teaching elders, Sunday School teachers it’s a good fit for you. In fact, I will go this far…there are only two reasons this would not be a helpful commentary set- if you are unsaved or if you are dead but I repeat myself.

God’s Whole Armor

God’s Whole Armor

Visiting Professor Matt Bassford had treated us to a great article on the Armor of God. May you be blessed by it…

God’s Whole Armor

Ephesians 6:13-17 is perhaps the most familiar passage in the entire epistle. Most Christians have heard at least one sermon about the whole armor of God, complete with a helpfully labeled illustration of a Roman soldier. Certainly, there is much to be gained from considering the importance of salvation, righteousness, and so forth to our spiritual lives!

However, there’s another point in this well-known text that is worth considering, and it comes from the phrase that usually only supplies the title for the sermon. We read, “the whole armor of God,” and we think, “OK; this is the armor that God gives us.” That’s true, but it’s incomplete. The whole armor of God isn’t only the armor that God gives. It’s also the armor that He wears.

This is evident from Paul’s use of the Old Testament. He didn’t invent any of the items of the Christian’s armament. Instead, he took passages describing the armament of God and cited or adapted them.

This is most obvious when it comes to the helmet of salvation and the breastplate of righteousness. Both come from Isaiah 59:17, in which Isaiah says of God, “He put on righteousness like a breastplate, and a helmet of salvation on His head. . .” (NASB95, and throughout). Paul clearly adapted that language for his own purposes, and the adaptation gives us the key to his whole approach.

Similarly, we find the shield of faith in the last part of Psalm 91:4, which tells us, “His faithfulness is a shield and bulwark.” The same Greek word is translated in our Bibles as both “faithfulness” and “faith”.

The other items in the panoply are a bit trickier. The sword that is the word of God is taken from Hosea 6:5, where God says of His unfaithful people, “Therefore I have hewn them in pieces by the prophets; I have slain them by the words of My mouth. . .” The passage doesn’t say straight up that God’s word is a sword; it merely describes His words as a hewing, slaying implement. However, from “hewing, slaying implement” to “sword” isn’t much of a leap.

The belt of truth also takes a little bit of digging to figure out. In the Old Testament, it appears in the Messianic prophecy of Isaiah 11:5, which reads, “Also righteousness will be the belt about His loins, and faithfulness the belt about His waist.” The link becomes clearer when we realize that the Hebrew word for “faithfulness” also can be translated “truth” and is so translated in the Septuagint, which Paul used in his writing.

Finally, we come to the preparation of the gospel of peace. This comes from Isaiah 52:7, which says in part, “How lovely on the mountains are the feet of him who brings good news, who announces peace. . .” If we look only at the verse, the antecedent of “him” is unclear, but the previous verse, Isaiah 52:6, is about God speaking. In Isaiah 52:7, “him” probably should be “Him”.

Paul, then, isn’t merely telling us to use the equipment that God offers us. He’s telling us to fight like He does, with all of His weapons and His virtues. If that’s the way we enter into spiritual warfare, the devil scarcely can hope to defeat us.

Forgiven

Forgiven

One of the most important concepts to the Christian Faith is that we are forgiven in Christ and by Christ. It is our privilege, as the redeemed, to feel secure in our salvation and have peace in, with, and from the Lord Jesus,  Let us look at some points  from the Scripture

  1. Joseph, who foreshadows Christ, forgives his brothers without condition, (Genesis50:1-21)

  2. In the Old Covenant, sacrifices were integral to forgiveness (Leviticus 5:1-19)

  3. God forgives His rebellious peoplen(Jeremiah 50:1-20)

  4. God forgives spiritual unfaithfulness (Hosea 14:1-9)

  5. The Son of Man forgives sins and heals from the consequences of our sin (Matthew 9:1-8)

  6. The Lord Jesus show s compassion to sinners (Luke 7:36-50)

 

Keep the words of the old hymn in your mind daily: “Jesus sinners doth receive.” Forgiveness is available to all the believing (John 3:16) Simply confess that Jesus is Lord, that God raised Him from the dead and you will be forgiven (Romans 10:9-10). Afterall, if we will confess our sin, the Lord Jesus, who is faithful and just, will forgive our sins and cleanse us from the filthiness of our sin.

 

Until next time, Grace to you.

Where is God when I am suffering

Where is God when I am suffering

The following Pathfinder Discipleship Guide focuses on one of the most commonly asked questions that people bring to pastors: Where is God when I am suffering? Does He even care?  I pray that the points which follow will bless you and be of help and comfort.

 

  1. A possible explanation for suffering: Suffering can help us to identify sin in our lives and also avoid it. (Job 36:1-21)

  2. A prayer in time of anguis (Psalm 22)

  3. God’s Compassion: Via the Prophet Isaiah, God tells all of his people througout all time that He will have compassion on them and bring their suffering to a close. (Isaiah 49:8-1)

  4. Jesus promises us both suffering and peace, we will overcome the world because He did first (John 16:33)

  5. God promises us that we will share in future glory with Him (Romans 8:15-20)

  6. Help in our times of need: Since Jesus has come to Earth and lived among us, he understands our struggle and we can come to Him for help in our suffering (Hebrews 4:15-16)

  7. God is sovereign, cares for us, and will see us thtough (1 Peter 5:6-10)

Prayer:  Lord Jesus, you have given us your Holy Spirit to be with us until you come. When we suffer, will you have Him bring your Scritpture to our minds and let us feel His comforting presence. Most importantly, when we suffer, help us to use that suffering to bring glory to Your Name. Amen

NKJV Large Print Wide Margin Reference BIble

NKJV Large Print Wide Margin Reference BIble

Click for additional photos

I have a very special relationship with Thomas Nelson’s NJKJV Wide Margin Reference Bible. My current is actually called The Precious because of the story behind its acquisition. I was delighted to find out that one would be offered in comfort print and I am ecstatic at the opportunity to review it.  (Thomas Nelson sent this copy free of charge in exchange for an honest review. My opinions are my own.)

 

Translation

Naturally, this is offered in the New King James Version, a fastidiously literal update to the KJV.

Side note: NKJV has been my primary teaching translation for the last 14 years of the 24 years I have taught the Bible. I have used it in over 13,000 interactions with Scripture.

The New Testament is based on the Textus Receptus, just like its predecessor the KJV.

Cover and Binding

Like the rest of the Premier Collection, the cover is black goatskin. The cover is moderately grained, not ironed smooth but there is also not a pronounced grain on the cover.  As will all the Premier Collection’s Bibles, it is quite delightful to the touch. The edge  lined cover is quite limp and supple, a favorite feature of mine when it comes to the Premier Collection. I enjoy the fell of their covers more than most other goatskin Bibles. I would like to suggest a full-yapp offering from the Premier Collection but it is not a deal breaker that they do not have it.

If you guessed that the text block was smythe sewn, you would be correct. A sewn binding is not simply a mark of quality, it is an essential feature in a Bible that is designed to last a lifetime. It is also what causes the Bible to lay flat in both Genesis and Revelation.

Paper, Layout, & Font

The Large Print Wide Margin Bible is offered in Comfort Print at a 10.5-point with 11-point leading. Placed side by side  with the NKJV Preaching Bible reveals that it is the exact same font in both Bibles.

Like its cousin, the Preaching Bible, the Large Print Wide Margin Bible is laid out in a double column verse by verse format. Footnotes are placed beneath the Scripture text in the footer of the Bible. The wide margins are 1.25 inches, ample space for your annotations.

The paper is a mild white, 36 GSM I  believe. The opacity is wonderful. I cannot think of a modern Bible that is more ideal for writing in. My primary recommendation is Prismacolor for color coding notes and Papermate Sharpwriter Pencil for notes. If you like to use pen, I recommend Pilot Pen Company’s Better Retractable brand.

Helps

Cross-References

This Bible contains Thomas Nelson’s Complete Cross Reference System. There are 72,000 references, 4000 of which are redundancies/alternate reference points. As far as reference systems go, only two Bibles top the offerings of Thomas Nelson, The Thompson Chain Reference Bible and the Westminster Reference Bible.

Introductions

The Introductions are a couple paragraphs each. The usual material (author, historical background etc.) is included.  Each Introduction is around a half a page. I am glad to see that they do not inundate with information but I would like to see an outline, at least a basic one.

Complete Concordance

The full NKJV Topical Concordance is included. It is always good to see a full concordance rather than the abbreviated concordance that some publishers include. For the Sunday School Teacher or the everyday Christian, the Concordance is THE essential tool for answer ing the question, “What does the Bible teach?”

How do I use it?

There is no right or wrong way to use the Large Print Wide Margin. I, personally, pair the Large Print Wide Margin with the NKKJV Preaching Bible. They are similar enough that the Wide Margin is used for Study and annotation while the Preaching Bible is used in the pulpit.

As an every -day Bible

This Bible has some heft to it and may or may not suit you as a daily carry Bible. The size is not an issue for me but for some it is. It will work well on just about any desk.

As a preaching Bible

Being so similar as the Preaching Bible, this Bible works well for preaching, Some of my colleagues actually prefer to preach from a wide margin Bible so that they have all of their exegetical notes handy.

Final Thoughts

This is an excellent Bible. It is my favorit in the Premier Collection.

Jeremiah Essentials

Jeremiah Essentials

A little more than a century after Isaiah preached in Jerusalem, Nebuchad­nezzar king of Babylon launched his final invasion into the southern kingdom of Judah. After a terrible siege, he destroyed the city and its temple, wiped out its royal house, and deported its citizens as slaves and exiles to his own capital city. And Jeremiah the prophet was there in Jerusalem to witness it all and to explain to the people of Judah precisely why it was all happening: because they had broken faith with the Lord their God, shattering the covenant he had made with them and thereby calling that covenant’s curses down on their own heads.

Jeremiah’s book is very different from Isaiah’s. Where Isaiah is highly structured around a definite and easily recognizable plotline, Jeremiah’s book is more like an abstract painting. Images, oracles, visions, sermons, and narrative are thrown (somewhat chaotically and not always in chronological order) against the canvas, and the result is not so much a linear story as an impression of truth and emotion and meaning. But even if Jeremiah’s literary approach is somewhat unusual, his message comes through loud and clear: Judah has sinned by disobeying and ignoring the Lord’s word, and just as with her sister kingdom Israel to the north, the hammer blow of God’s wrath and justice is about to fall on them.

Theme: Jeremiah reminds us that faith demands action. Covenant living requires a faithful response to God in the form of proper worship and of helping, not exploiting, the weak and vulnerable.

Author: The book itself states that its contents are “the words of Jeremiah son of Hilkiah” (Jeremiah 1:1). The prophet Jeremiah dictated most of his prophecies to his secretary, Baruch, who wrote them down word for word. Chapter 52 may have been added by a later editor.

Date of Writing: Jeremiah wrote these words over the course of his ministry (626–585 BC). Chapter 52 was added sometime after King Jehoiachin’s release from captivity (approximately 560 BC).

Encouragement From Jeremiah: “‘I know the plans I have for you,’ declares the LORD, ‘plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future’” (Jeremiah 29:11). God gives this promise to Israel while they are in captivity in Babylon- though they are in the midst of judgment, the Lord has not forgotten them and He reminds them that their chastisement is for their good. They are still God’s covenant people.

Challenge From Jeremiah: “‘You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart. I will be found by you,’ declares the LORD” (Jeremiah 29:13–14).

Reflection From Jeremiah: “LORD, I know that people’s lives are not their own; it is not for them to direct their steps. Discipline me, LORD, but only in due measure—not in your anger, or you will reduce me to nothing” (Jeremiah 10:23–24).

 

Storyline

On the eve of His crucifixion, Jesus (the foretold “righteous Branch”) ate a final meal with his twelve disciples; during their time together, He declared that the new covenant spoken of in Jeremiah had arrived. Unlike the old covenant, which gave merely a picture of forgiveness through the sacrifice of bulls and goats, the new covenant, established through the precious blood of Christ, would accomplish true, enduring salvation. As the Lord declared through the prophet, “I will forgive their wickedness and will remember their sins no more” (Jeremiah 31:34).

Key Verses: Jeremiah 7:23, 24 and 8:11, 12—“But this is what I commanded them, saying, ‘Obey My voice, and I will be your God, and you shall be My people. And walk in all the ways that I have commanded you, that it may be well with you.’ Yet they did not obey or incline their ear, but followed the counsels and the dictates of their evil hearts, and went backward and not forward” (7:23, 24).

“For they have healed the hurt of the daughter of My people slightly, saying, ‘Peace, peace!’ when there is no peace. Were they ashamed when they had committed abomination? No! They were not at all ashamed, nor did they know how to blush. Therefore they shall fall among those who fall; in the time of their punishment they shall be cast down, says the LORD” (8:11, 12).

The Christ of Jeremiah

The Messiah is clearly seen in 23:1–8 as the coming Shepherd and righteous Branch who “shall reign and prosper, and execute judgment and righteousness in the earth. In His days Judah will be saved, and Israel will dwell safely; now this is His name by which He will be called: THE LORD OUR RIGHTEOUSNESS (23:5, 6). He will bring in the new covenant (31:31–34), which will fulfill God’s covenants with Abraham (Gen. 12:1–3; 17:1–8), Moses and the people (Deut. 28–30), and David (2 Sam. 7:1–17).

The curse on Jehoiachin (Jeconiah, Coniah) in 22:28–30 meant that no physical descendant would succeed him to the throne. Matthew 1:1–17 traces the genealogy of Christ through Solomon and Jeconiah to His legal (but not His physical) father, Joseph. However, no son of Joseph could sit upon the throne of David, for he would be under the curse of Jehoiachin. Luke 3:23–38 t races Christ’s lineage backward from Mary (His physical parent) through David’s other son, Nathan (3:31), thereby avoiding the curse. The righteous Branch will indeed reign on the throne of David.

 

Key People in Jeremiah

King Josiah —sixteenth king of the southern kingdom of Judah; attempted to follow God (1:1–3; 22:11,18)

King Jehoahaz —evil son of Josiah and seventeenth king of the southern kingdom of Judah (22:9–11)

King Jehoiakim —evil son of Josiah and eighteenth king of the southern kingdom of Judah (22:18–23; 25:1–38; 26:1–24; 27:1–11; 35:1–19; 36:1–32)

King Jehoiachin (Coniah) —evil son of Jehoiakim and nineteenth king of the southern kingdom of Judah (13:18–27; 22:24–30)

King Zedekiah —evil uncle of Jehoiachin and twentieth king of the southern kingdom of Judah (21:1–14; 24:8–10; 27:12–22; 32:1–5; 34:1–22; 37:1– 21; 38:1–28; 51:59–64)

Baruch —served as Jeremiah’s scribe (32:12–16; 36:4–32; 43:3–45:4)

Ebed-Melech —Ethiopian palace official who feared God and helped Jeremiah (38:7–39:16)

King Nebuchadnezzar —greatest king of Babylon; led the people of Judah into captivity (21–52)

The Rechabites —obedient descendants of Jonadab; contrasted to the disobedient people of Israel (35:1–19)

Key Doctrines in Jeremiah

Sin —Israel’s sin demanded punishment from God (2:1–13, 23–37; 5:1–6; 7:16–34; 11:1–17; 17:1–4; 18:1–17; 23:9–40; Exodus 23:33; Deuteronomy 9:16; 1 Kings 11:39; Ezra 6:17; Job 1:22; Psalm 5:4; Micah 3:8; Matthew 5:30; Luke 17:1; Romans 1:29)

Judgment/Punishment (4:3–18; 9:3–26; 12:14–17; 15:1–9; 16:5–13; 19:1–15; 24:8–10; 25:1–38; 39:1–10; 44:1–30; 46:1–51:14; Exodus 12:12; Psalm 1:5; Hosea 5:1; Amos 4:12; John 12:31–32; Romans 14:10; 2 Thessalonians 1:7–10)

Restoration of Israel (23:3–8; chapters 30–33; Deuteronomy 30:1–5; Psalm 71:20–21; Isaiah 49:6; Nahum 2:2; Acts 1:6–8; 15:16; 1 Peter 5:10)

God’s Character in Jeremiah

God fills heaven and earth —23:24

God is good —31:12,14; 33:9,11

God is holy —23:9

God is just —9:24; 32:19; 50:7

God is kind —31:3

God is long-suffering —15:15; 44:22

God is loving —31:3

God is merciful —3:12; 33:11

God is omnipresent —23:23

God is powerful —5:22; 10:12; 20:11; 37:27

God is a promise keeper —31:33; 33:14

God is righteous —9:24; 12:1

God is sovereign —5:22, 24; 7:1–15; 10:12–16; 14:22; 17:5–10; 18:5–10, 25:15–38; 27:5–8; 31:1–3; 42:1–22; 51:15–19

God is true —10:10

God is unequaled —10:6

God is wise —10:7,12; 32:19

God is wrathful —3:12–13; 4:8; 7:19–20; 10:10; 18:7–8; 30:11; 31:18–20; 44:3

 

 

Teaching Outline

  1. JEREMIAH’S SPECIAL APPOINTMENT (1:1-19)
  2. THE PROPHET DELIVERS GOD’S MESSAGES (2:1–45:5)
  3. God’s Warnings to Judah (2:1–29:32)
  4. The Coming Exile and Restoration (30:1–33:26)
  5. The Fall of Jerusalem (34:1–45:5)
  6. GOD’S JUDGMENT ON THE NATIONS (46:1–51:64)
  7. A PAINFUL REMINDER OF PAINFUL DAYS (52:1-34)

 

 

Isaiah Essentials

Isaiah Essentials

Theme: Isaiah describes God’s judgment of sin, as well as God’s forgiveness, comfort and hope. Other than Psalms, Isaiah contains the most Messianic prophecies of any Old Testament book.

Author: The prophet Isaiah is identified as the book’s author, and other Scripture passages agree.

Date of Writing: The book of Isaiah was probably written between 700 and 680 BC.

Encouragement From Isaiah: “A bruised reed [the LORD] will not break, and a smoldering wick he will not snuff out” (Isaiah 42:3).

Challenge From Isaiah: “Even youths grow tired and weary, and young men stumble and fall; but those who hope in the LORD will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint” (Isaiah 40:30–31).

Reflection From Isaiah: “Woe to those who go to great depths to hide their plans from the LORD, who do their work in darkness and think, ‘Who sees us? Who will know?’” (Isaiah 29:15).

Storyline

New Testament writers quote Isaiah frequently because it contains many predictions of the Messiah. Best known are those of Isaiah 53, which declares that “like sheep” all humankind has “gone astray,” but that the Lord has “laid on him [Jesus] the iniquity of us all” (v. 6) so that He can “justify many” (v. 11). All those who trust in Jesus for salvation have the hope of “new heavens and the new earth” in which they will dwell forever with God (Isaiah 66:22).

 

The Christ of Isaiah

When he speaks about Christ, Isaiah sounds more like a New Testament writer than an Old Testament prophet. His messianic prophecies are clearer and more explicit than those in any other Old Testament book. They describe many aspects of the Person and work of Christ in His first and second advents, and often blend the two together. Here are a few of the Christological prophecies with their New Testament fulfillments: 7:14 (Matt. 1:22, 23); 9:1, 2 (Matt. 4:12–16); 9:6 (Luke 2:11; Eph. 2:14–18); 11:1 (Luke 3:23, 32; Acts 13:22, 23); 11:2 (Luke 3:22); 28:16 (1 Pet. 2:4–6); 40:3–5 (Matt. 3:1–3); 42:1–4 (Matt. 12:15–21); 42:6 (Luke 2:29–32); 50:6 (Matt. 26:67; 27:26, 30); 52:14 (Phil. 2:7–11); 53:3 (Luke 23:18; John 1:11; 7:5); 53:4, 5 (Rom. 5:6, 8); 53:7 (Matt. 27:12–14; John 1:29; 1 Pet. 1:18, 19); 53:9 (Matt. 27:57–60); 53:12 (Mark 15:28); 61:1, 2 (Luke 4:17–19, 21). The Old Testament has over three hundred prophecies about the first advent of Christ, and Isaiah contributes a number of them. The odds that even ten of them could be fulfilled by one person is a statistical marvel. Isaiah’s messianic prophecies that await fulfillment in the Lord’s second advent include: 4:2; 11:2–6, 10; 32:1–8; 49:7; 52:13, 15; 59:20, 21; 60:1–3; 61:2, 3.

Isaiah 52:13–53:12 is the central passage of the consolation section (40–66). Its five stanzas present five different aspects of the saving work of Christ: (1) 52:13–15—His wholehearted sacrifice (burnt offering); (2) 53:1–3—His perfect character (meal offering); (3) 53:4–6—He brought atonement that issues in peace with God (peace offering); (4) 53:7–9—He paid for the transgression of the people (sin offering); (5) 53:10–12—He died for the effects of sin (trespass offering).

 

Key Verses: Isaiah 9:6, 7 and 53:6—“For unto us a Child is born, unto us a Son is given; and the government will be upon His shoulder. And His name will be called Wonderful, Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. Of the increase of His government and peace there will be no end, upon the throne of David and over His kingdom, to order it and establish it with judgment and justice from that time forward, even forever. The zeal of the LORD of hosts will perform this” (9:6, 7).

“All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned, every one, to his own way; and the LORD has laid on Him the iniquity of us all” (53:6).

Key People in Isaiah

Isaiah —prophet who ministered throughout the reigns of four kings of Judah; gave both a message of judgment and hope (1–66)

Shear-Jashub —Isaiah’s son; name means “a remnant shall return,” denoting God’s promised faithfulness to His people (7:3; 8:18; 10:21)

Maher-Shalal-Hash-Baz —Isaiah’s son; name means “hasting to the spoil, hurrying to the prey” denoting God’s coming punishment (8:1,3,18)

Key Doctrines in Isaiah

Christ as the Suffering Servant (49:1–57:21; Psalms 68:18; 110:1; Matthew 26:39; John 10:18; Acts 3:13–15; Philippians 2:8,9; Hebrews 2:9)

The first coming of the Messiah (7:14; 8:14; 9:2,6–7; 11:1–2; Ezekiel 11:16; Matthew 1:23; Luke 1:31; 2:34; John 1:45; 3:16; Romans 9:33; 1 Peter 2:8; Revelation 12:5)

The second coming of the Messiah (4:2; 11:2–6,10; 32:1–8; 49:7; 52:13,15; 59:20–21; 60:1–3; 61:2–3; Jeremiah 23:5; Zechariah 3:8; Matthew 25:6; 26:64; Romans 13:11–12; Philippians 4:5; Revelation 3:11)

Salvation through Christ (9:6–7; 52:13–15; 53:1–12; Isaiah 12:2; Psalm 103:11–12; Luke 19:9; John 3:16; Acts 16:31; Romans 3:21–24; 1 Timothy 1:15)

God’s Character in Isaiah

God is accessible —55:3,6

God is eternal —9:6

God is faithful —49:7

God is glorious —2:10; 6:3; 42:8; 48:11; 59:19

God is holy —5:16; 6:3; 57:15

God is just —45:21

God is kind —54:8,10; 63:7

God is Light —60:19

God is long-suffering —30:18; 48:9

God is loving —38:17; 43:3–4; 49:15–16; 63:9

God is merciful —49:13; 54:7–8, 55:3,7

God is powerful —26:4; 33:13; 41:10; 43:13; 48:13; 52:10; 63:12

God is a promise keeper —1:18; 43:2

God is provident —10:5–17; 27:3; 31:5; 44:7; 50:2; 63:14

God is righteous —41:10

God is true —25:1; 38:19; 65:16

God is unequaled —43:10; 44:6; 46:5,9

God is unified —44:6,8,24; 45:5–8,18,21–22; 46:9–11

God is unsearchable —40:28

God is wise —28:29; 40:14,28; 42:9; 44:7; 46:10; 47:10; 66:18

God is wrathful —1:4; 3:8; 9:13–14,19; 13:9; 26:20; 42:24–25; 47:6; 48:9; 54:8; 57:15–16; 64:9

Key Words in Isaiah

Light: Hebrew ‘or —2:5; 5:30; 10:17; 13:10; 30:26; 45:7; 58:10; 60:20—refers to literal or symbolic light. This Hebrew word often denotes daylight or daybreak (Judges 16:2; Nehemiah 8:3), but it can also be symbolic of life and deliverance (Job 33:28,30; Psalm 27:1; 36:9; 49:19; Micah 7:8,9). In the Bible, light is frequently associated with true knowledge and understanding (42:6; 49:6; 51:4; Job 12:25), and even gladness, good fortune, and goodness (Job 30:26; Psalm 97:11). The Bible describes light as the clothing of God: a vivid picture of His honor, majesty, splendor, and glory (Psalm 104:2; Habakkuk 3:3–4). A proper lifestyle is characterized by walking in God’s light (2:5; Psalm 119:105; Proverbs 4:18; 6:20–23).

Blessing: Hebrew berakah —19:24,25; 44:3; 51:2; 61:9; 65:8,16; 66:3— comes from a verb expressing several significant ideas, namely “to fill with potency,” “to make fruitful,” or “to secure victory.” The word alludes to God’s promise to benefit all nations through Abraham’s descendants (Genesis 12:3). When people offer a blessing, they are wishing someone well or offering a prayer on behalf of themselves or someone else (Genesis 49; Deuteronomy 33:1). Old Testament patriarchs are often remembered for the blessings they gave to their children. When God gives a blessing, He gives it to those who faithfully follow Him (Deuteronomy 11:27), providing them with salvation (Psalm 3:8), life (Psalm 133:3), and success (2 Samuel 7:29).

Servant: Hebrew ‘ebed —20:3; 24:2; 37:35; 42:1; 44:21; 49:5; 53:11—derives from a verb meaning “to serve,” “to work,” or “to enslave.” While ‘ebed can mean “slave” (Genesis 43:18), slavery in Israel was different than in most places in the ancient Middle East. Slavery was regulated by the law of Moses, which prohibited indefinite slavery and required that slaves be freed on the Sabbath (seventh) year (Exodus 21:2) and the Year of Jubilee, the fiftieth year (Leviticus 25:25–28). Sometimes the Hebrew word can refer to the subjects of a king (2 Samuel 10:19). But usually the word is best translated “servant.” God referred to His prophets as “My servants” (Jeremiah 7:25) and spoke of the coming Messiah as His Servant, the One who would perfectly obey His will (see 42:1–4; 49:1–6; 50:4–9; 52:13– 53:12).

Salvation: Hebrew yeshu ‘ah —12:2; 25:9; 33:6; 49:6; 51:8; 59:11; 62:1— describes deliverance from distress and the resultant victory and well-being. The term occurs most often in Psalms and Isaiah, where it is frequently used along with the word righteousness , indicating a connection between God’s righteousness and His saving acts (45:8; 51:6,8; 56:1; 62:1; Psalm 98:2). This word can be used for a military victory (1 Samuel 14:45), but it is normally used of God’s deliverance (Exodus 15:2; Psalm 13:5,6). The expressions the salvation of the Lord and the salvation of our God speak of God’s work on behalf of His people. The expression the God of my salvation is more private in nature, referring to the deliverance of an individual (12:2; 52:10; Exodus 14:13; 2 Chronicles 20:17; Psalms 88:1; 98:3).

Teaching Outline

  1. God’s overture to his people (chs. 1-6)
  2. Threat and promises (ch. 1)
  3. Present failure and future hope (chs. 2-4)
  4. Lament for God’s vineyard (ch. 5)
  5. Isaiah’s call and ministry (ch. 6)
  6. The hope of Immanuel (chs. 7-12)
  7. The contrast with faithless King Ahaz (7:1-9:7)
  8. God’s discipline and promises (9:8-10:34)
  9. Cosmic hope (chs. 11-12)
  10. King of the nations (chs. 13-27)
  11. Babylon to Egypt (chs. 13-20)
  12. Babylon to Tyre (chs. 21-23)
  13. The world is judged and Israel renewed (chs. 24-27)
  14. Trust and obedience (chs. 28-39)
  15. God’s judgment pronounced on human rebellion (chs. 28-33)
  16. A choice of two destinies (chs. 34-35)
  17. The example of faithful King Hezekiah (chs. 36-39)
  18. The Servant King (chs. 40-55)
  19. Here is your God! (ch. 40)
  20. The glory of God and the futility of idols (chs. 41-48)
  21. The servant’s work accomplished (chs. 49-53)
  22. The growth of God’s eternal kingdom (chs. 54-55)
  23. The Sovereign Conqueror (chs. 56-66)
  24. Faithfulness and trust in the waiting time (chs. 56-59)
  25. The glories of the King and his eternal kingdom (60:1-63:6)
  26. The prayer of faith (63:7-64:12)
  27. The ultimate triumph (chs. 65-66)
1 Kings Essentials

1 Kings Essentials

Storyline

Solomon demonstrated that human wisdom is not sufficient to guarantee holiness and salvation. Of course, when used rightly, his wisdom did result in obedience and blessing. But Solomon’s vast knowledge of plants, animals, birds, reptiles, and fish, along with his collection of proverbs and songs (1 Kings 4:32–33) could not prevent him from disobeying God. He needed a transformed heart. Centuries later, the apostle Paul articulated the truth that Solomon illustrated when he declared in 1 Corinthians that the cross of Christ is the only means of salvation and called human wisdom “foolishness” in comparison (1 Corinthians 1:18–21).

 

Years of blessing

The transition of kingship from David to Solomon, just as promised (1 Chronicles 22:6-10), was somewhat unsteady (1:1-2:46). Solomon’s reign was characterised by:

Wisdom. When invited to choose his blessing, Solomon chose wisdom (3:5-15). His wisdom was both down-to-earth (3:16-28) and far-reaching (4:29-34). Proverbs records many of his sayings. Worship. Solomon built the temple David had planned (5:1-7:51). God’s presence filled it as Solomon dedicated it to God (8:1-66). God reaffirmed his covenant, but reminded Solomon to obey him (9:1-9). The temple remained the focus of worship until destroyed by Babylon in 586 bc. Wealth. Solomon became extremely wealthy (10:14-29), as the Queen of Sheba witnessed (10:1-13). Some wealth came from trade, but some from taxes. Wives. Solomon showed his wealth by having 700 wives and 300 concubines. This inability to rule his sexual appetite would be his downfall, for his foreign wives brought their foreign gods which stole Solomon’s heart (11:1-13).

Years of division

Sadly, Solomon sowed the seeds of Israel’s destruction, through crippling taxes and compulsory labour, which bore fruit in the reign of his son, Rehoboam. Rejecting the elders’ wisdom, he threatened to make things even harder for the northern tribes, on whom the greatest burden had fallen (12:1-15). They therefore rejected him, crowning instead Jeroboam, one of Solomon’s officials, and established a separate kingdom (12:16-24). God’s people split into two – Judah in the south and Israel in the north – never to come together again. To prevent people going to Jerusalem to worship, Jeroboam established shrines (12:25-33), a sin rebuked by prophets (13:1-14:20) and known thereafter as “the sin of Jeroboam”.

The author then deals with these two kingdoms in parallel – Judah first and then Israel. Israel’s kings were wicked; most of Judah’s were good.

Years of challenge

A major focus is Elijah (17:1-21:29; 2 Kings 2), who challenged Israel for adopting Baal worship, or at least trying to blend worshipping Baal with worshipping the living God. Miracles are associated with Elijah’s ministry, showing God’s provision (17:1-6), compassion (17:7-24; 21:1-29) and supremacy (18:16-46).

 

 

Key Verses: 1 Kings 9:4, 5; 11:11—“Now if you walk before Me as your father David walked, in integrity of heart and in uprightness, to do according to all that I have commanded you, and if you keep My statutes and My judgments, then I will establish the throne of your kingdom over Israel forever, as I promised David your father, saying, ‘You shall not fail to have a man on the throne of Israel’ ” (9:4, 5).

“Therefore the LORD said to Solomon, ‘Because you have done this, and have not kept My covenant and My statutes, which I have commanded you, I will surely tear the kingdom away from you and give it to your servant’ ” (11:11).

 

Key People in 1 Kings

David —king of Israel; appointed his son Solomon to be the next king to rule (1–2:10)

Solomon —son of Bathsheba and David; third king to rule Israel and builder of the temple; God made him the wisest man ever born (1:10–11:43)

Rehoboam —son of Solomon; succeeded him as king of Israel; his evil actions led to the division of Israel into two kingdoms; later became king of the southern kingdom of Judah (11:43–12:24; 14:21–31)

Jeroboam —evil king of the northern ten tribes of Israel; erected idols and appointed non-Levitical priests (11:24–14:20)

Elijah —prophet of Israel; accomplished extraordinary acts of faith against the prophets of Baal (17:1–19:21; 21:17–28)

Ahab —eighth and most evil king of Israel; committed more evil than any other Israelite king (16:28–17:1; 18:1–19:1; 20:1–22:40)

Jezebel —married Ahab and became queen of Israel; promoted Baal worship (16:31; 18:4–19; 19:1–2; 21:5–27)

 

Key Doctrines in 1 Kings

God’s judgment of the apostate nations (9:3–9; Deuteronomy 4:26; 28:37; 2 Samuel 14–16; 2 Chronicles 7:19–20; Psalm 44:14; 89:30; Jeremiah 24:9; Hosea 5:11–12; Matthew 23:33–36; John 3:18–19; 12:48; Romans 2:5–6; 2 Peter 3:10; Revelation 18:10)

Fulfilled prophecies of God (13:2–5; 22:15–28; Numbers 27:17; 2 Kings 23:15–20; 2 Chronicles 18:16; Matthew 9:36; Mark 6:34; John 2:18)

God’s faithfulness to His covenant with David (11:12–13,34–36; 15:4; 2 Samuel 7:12–16; Luke 1:30–33; Acts 2:22–36)

God’s Character in 1 Kings

God fills heaven and earth —8:27

God is glorious —8:11 God is merciful —8:23

God is a promise keeper —8:56

God is provident —21:19; 22:30,34,37–38

Christ in 1 Kings

The wisdom of Solomon typifies Christ who “became wisdom from God” (1 Corinthians 1:30). Yet, in the book of 1 Kings, Solomon led his kingdom into apostasy by marrying many foreign women (11:1). In contrast, Christ Himself proclaimed that He was “greater than Solomon” (Matthew 12:42). The future kingdom of Christ will not pass away.

Key Words in 1 Kings

Baal: Hebrew ba’al ––16:31; 18:19,21,26,40; 19:18; 22:53—literally means “master,” or “husband.” Baal refers to pagan gods of fertility and storms throughout the ancient Middle East. Canaanite literature links Baal with the fertility goddess Asherah, who is mentioned numerous times in the Old Testament (2 Kings 21:7). Worship of these pagan deities included self-mutilation, ritual prostitution, and infant sacrifice. God punished the Israelites for adopting the worship of Baal and Asherah (Judges 2:11–15; Jeremiah 19:4–6).

Supplication: Hebrew techinnah–– 8:28,33,45,47,52,54,59; 9:3—refers to the petitioning of God or a specific person for favor or mercy (Jeremiah 37:20; 38:26). Solomon uses this word repeatedly in his dedication prayer over the temple (8:23–9:3; 2 Chronicles 6:14–42). Supplication is often used in relation to impending distress in the midst of one’s enemies (Psalms 55:1–3; 119:70; Jeremiah 36:7). The Bible describes the supplications of David (Psalm 6:9), Solomon (9:3), and of wicked King Manasseh, who humbled himself before God (2 Chronicles 33:12–13).

Name: Hebrew shem ––1:47; 3:2; 5:5; 7:21; 8:17; 9:3; 11:36; 18:24—most likely means “to mark.” In biblical history, a person’s name often described personal characteristics such as destiny or position (see 1 Samuel 25:25 for the explanation of Nabal’s name, which meant “Fool”). Sometimes, God renamed people to reflect a change in their character or status (see Genesis 35:10). The various names of God reveal important aspects of His nature (for example, God Most High, Almighty God, I AM). The name of God should be used with honor and respect (Exodus 20:7). God shared His name with Israel to express His intimate covenantal relationship with them (Exodus 3:13–15).

Gold: Hebrew zahab ––6:21,28; 7:49; 9:28; 10:14; 12:28; 15:15; 20:3—describes both the substance and the color of gold (1 Kings 10:16; Zechariah 4:12). Gold, usually mentioned with silver, symbolized wealth (Genesis 13:2; 2 Chronicles 1:15; Ezekiel 16:13). Most references to gold in the Old Testament relate to Solomon’s temple and palace (Exodus 25:3; 2 Chronicles 2:7; 9:13–27). However precious gold appears, nothing compares to the value of wisdom (Job 28:17), loving favor (Proverbs 22:1), and the commandments of the Lord (Psalms 19:9–10; 119:72,127).

 

 

2 Samuel Essentials

2 Samuel Essentials

Storyline

At the height of his reign, David decided to honor God by building Him a great house: a temple to replace the more portable tabernacle. Surprisingly though, God rejected and reversed David’s offer. Instead of David’s building God a house, God promised to build David a house—a dynasty that would last forever with a king who would reign eternally (2 Samuel 7:1–17). Centuries later, when the angel Gabriel announced to Mary that she would give birth to Jesus, he quoted that very promise and told her that the Lord would fulfill it through her child (Luke 1:32–33).

 

A New Covenant (The Davidic Covenant)

David felt it strange that, while he lived in a palace, God had only a tent (7:1-2). So he decided to build a temple. But God said that he didn’t want David to build a house for him; rather he would build a house for David (7:4-11), promising him an eternal kingdom (7:12-16). These words of promise are known as the Davidic covenant. David responded to God’s words with a prayer of humble gratitude and praise (7:18-29).

 

Even the man after God’s own heart fails

Failure in his personal life, through adultery and conspiracy to murder (11:1-27). Through confessing quickly, however (in contrast to Saul who excused sin or blamed others), David was forgiven (12:1-25).

 

Failure in his family life, through weak fathering. David failed to discipline Amnon when he raped Tamar (13:1-21), and Absalom when he avenged her (13:23-39). When David eventually allowed Absalom to return from self-imposed exile (14:1-33), Absalom interpreted this as weakness and gathered people (15:1-6), finally leading a coup (15:7-12). David fled, leaving his country in civil war (15:13-17:29). It fell to Joab to deal with Absalom (18:1-18) and persuade David to return (18:19-20:26). Failure in leadership, through counting his soldiers. Whether an act of pride, or lack of trust in God, he was judged for it (24:1-25). Not even the king was exempt from God’s discipline (7:14).

 

The Christ of 2 Samuel

As seen in the introduction to 1 Samuel, David is one of the most important types of Christ in the Old Testament. In spite of his sins, he remains a man after God’s own heart because of his responsive and faithful attitude toward God. He sometimes fails in his personal life, but he never flags in his relationship to the Lord. Unlike most of the kings who succeed him, he never allows idolatry to become a problem during his reign. He is a true servant of Yahweh, obedient to His law, and an ideal king. His rule is usually characterized by justice, wisdom, integrity, courage, and compassion. Having conquered Jerusalem, he sits upon the throne of Melchizedek, (“Righteous King”; see Gen. 14:18). David is the standard by which all subsequent kings are measured.

Of course, David’s life as recorded in chapters 1–10 is a far better portrayal of the future Messiah than is his life as it is seen in 11–24. Sin mars potential. The closest way in which he foreshadows the coming King can be seen in the important covenant God makes with him (7:4–17). David wants to build a house for God; but instead, God makes a house for David. The same three promises of an eternal kingdom, throne, and seed are later given to Christ (Luke 1:32, 33). There are nine different dynasties in the northern kingdom of Israel, but there is only one dynasty in Judah. The promise of a permanent dynasty is fulfilled in Christ, the “Son of David” (Matt. 21:9; 22:42), who will sit upon the throne of David (Is. 9:7; Luke 1:32).

 

Key Verses: 2 Samuel 7:12, 13; 22:21—“When your days are fulfilled and you rest with your fathers, I will set up your seed after you, who will come from your body, and I will establish his kingdom. He shall build a house for My name, and I will establish the throne of his kingdom forever” (7:12, 13).

“The LORD rewarded me according to my righteousness; according to the cleanness of my hands He has recompensed me” (22:21).

 

Key People in 2 Samuel

David —greatest king of Israel; also a shepherd, musician, and poet; direct ancestor to Jesus Christ (1:1–24:25)

Joab —military commander of David’s army (2:13–3:39; 8:16; 10:7–12:27; 14:1–33; 18:2–24:9)

Bathsheba —committed adultery with David; became queen of Israel and mother of Solomon; direct ancestor of Jesus (11:1–26; 12:24)

Nathan —prophet and advisor to David; urged him to repent of his sin (7:2–17; 12:1–25)

Absalom —son of David; attempted to overthrow the throne of Israel (3:3; 13:1–19:10)

 

Key Doctrines in 2 Samuel

Davidic covenant —God’s promise to David to extend his throne and kingdom forever (7:12–16; 22:51; Genesis 49:8–12; Numbers 24:7–9,17–19; 2 Kings 8:19; 2 Chronicles 13:5; 21:7; Psalm 89:20–37; Isaiah 16:5; Acts 15:16–18; Revelation 22:16)

Sin —Israel’s sin created personal and national consequences (6:6–7; 12:13–14; Genesis 3; Numbers 4:15; 15:30–31; 1 Kings 11:38; 13:34; 2 Kings 21:12; Psalm 106:43; Isaiah 22:14; Jeremiah 19:3; Ezekiel 7:3; 18:30; John 8:34; Romans 2:5; Hebrews 10:4,26–31)

Messiah —foretold to David by Nathan to be the anointed king who will triumph over all nations opposed to God (7:12–16; 22:51; Matthew 1:16–17; 12:22; Mark 1:1; John 7:42; Acts 2:30–33)

God’s Character in 2 Samuel

God is kind —2:6

God is a promise keeper —7:12–13

God is provident —17:14–15

God is true —2:6

God is unequaled —7:22

God is unified —7:22

God is wise —7:20

God is wrathful —6:7; 21:1; 24:1,15,17

 

Key Words in 2 Samuel

Ark: Hebrew ‘aron ––6:2,4,10,12,17; 7:2; 11:11; 15:24—can be translated “chest” (2 Kings 12:9) or “sarcophagus” (Genesis 50:26), but most often appears in the phrase ‘aron haberith , which means “ark of the covenant.” The ark was a wooden chest overlaid with gold (Exodus 25:10–22), housing the Ten Commandments (Exodus 40:20), Aaron’s staff, and a pot of manna (Hebrews 9:4). It sat in the Most Holy Place as a reminder of Israel’s covenant with God and His presence among them. When the Israelites became careless with the ark (1 Samuel 4:1–11), God allowed it to be captured in order to demonstrate that His covenant relationship with them transcended symbols and superstitions. What He required was continual obedience to His covenant and a contrite heart surrendered to Him (Psalm 51:17; Isaiah 57:15).

Jerusalem: Hebrew yerushalaim ––5:5; 8:7; 11:1, 15:8,29; 16:15; 17:20; 19:19; 24:16—related to the word for “peace.” During the reign of King David, Jerusalem was made the political and religious capital of Israel and became central to the unfolding of God’s redemptive plan. Jerusalem is described variously in the Old Testament as the city of God (Psalm 87:1–3), the place where God has put His name (2 Kings 21:4), a place of salvation (Isaiah 46:13), the throne of God (Jeremiah 3:17), and a holy city (Isaiah 52:1). The prophets foresaw an approaching time when Jerusalem would be judged because of its iniquity (Micah 4:10–12), but in pronouncing judgment they could also see its glorious restoration (Isaiah 40:2; 44:25–28; Daniel 9:2; Zephaniah 3:16–20). This vision of a restored Jerusalem included the hope of a New Jerusalem in which God would gather all His people (Isaiah 65:17–19; Revelation 21:1–2).

Mighty Men: Hebrew gibbor ––1:25; 10:7; 16:6; 17:8; 20:7; 23:8,22—emphasizes excellence or unusual quality. In the Old Testament, it is used for the excellence of a lion (Proverbs 30:30), of good or bad men (Genesis 10:9; 1 Chronicles 19:8), of giants (Genesis 6:4), of angels (Psalm 103:20), or even God (Deuteronomy 10:17; Nehemiah 9:32). The Scriptures state that the mighty man is not victorious because of his strength (Psalm 33:16) but because of his understanding and knowledge of the Lord (Jeremiah 9:23–24). The phrase mighty God is used three times in the Old Testament, including Isaiah’s messianic prophecy of the birth of Jesus (Isaiah 9:6; 10:21; Jeremiah 32:18).

 

Teaching Outline

  1. David’s Triumphs (1:1–10:19)
  2. Saul’s Death (1:1–27)
  3. David Anointed King of Judah (2:1–7)
  4. Civil War Exists with Israel, Ruled by a Son of Saul (2:8–4:12)
  5. David Becomes King of All Israel (5:1–5)
  6. David Takes Jerusalem (5:6–16)
  7. David Defeats the Philistines (5:17–25)
  8. David Brings the Ark to Jerusalem (6:1–23)
  9. God Promises to Establish David’s Kingdom (7:1–29)
  10. David Defeats Enemies (8:1–18)
  11. David Keeps His Promise to Jonathan (9:1–13)
  12. David Defeats the Ammonites (10:1–19)
  13. David’s Troubles (11:1–20:26)
  14. Personal and Moral (11:1–12:31)
  15. Family (13:1–18:33)
  16. Nation (19:1–20:26)

III. David’s Trials (21:1–24:25)

  1. Famine (21:1–14)
  2. Warfare (21:15–22)
  3. Praise (22:1–51)
  4. Confidence (23:1–7)
  5. Control (23:8–39)
  6. Census (24:1–25)[1]

 

[1] Lawrence O. Richards, The Bible Reader’s Companion, electronic ed. (Wheaton: Victor Books, 1991), 202.