Friday, December 15, 2017

The Bible - It's 66 Books In Brief by Leslie Grant

And thou shalt remember all the way which Jehovah thy God led thee these forty years in the wilderness, to humble thee, and to prove thee, to know what was in thy heart, whether thou wouldest keep His commandments or not. Deuteronomy 8:2

Deuteronomy means "repetition of the law." It is mainly an address by Moses to Israel, in which he faithfully reviews their history, bringing everything out in the light of God's own glory. He shows in that history not only God's approval of their acts of obedience and His disapproval of faithlessness and disobedience, but also the marvellous grace, patience, and wisdom of God in the ways of His government. So they are to remember that God has led them, and all the way in which He has led them. Far from exalting them in the world, He has humbled them, and put them to the proof as to whether or not they would be obedient. He had allowed them to hunger, and fed them with manna, that they might realize their dependence upon Him and upon the truth and sufficiency of His Word.
The book also confirms and emphasizes the responsibility of Israel to diligently do the will of God in view of giving account to Him. In this way it puts us in mind of the judgment seat of Christ; and being a book of great detail, it reminds us that the details of our lives are far more important than we might like to think, for these will receive close attention when we stand before the Lord in that day.

Every place whereon the sole of your foot shall tread have I given to you, as I said unto Moses. Joshua 1:3

Joshua means "Jehovah Savior," the same name asJesus in the Greek language. This is a book of militant conquest and victory. Israel is seen calmly dependent upon God, not rushing eagerly to battle, but with quiet deliberation taking each step as led by the Word of God. They enter the Promised Land by the divine stepping of the river Jordan, a type of the death and resurrection of Christ as linked with His people. Each enemy in turn must give way to God's power among His armies. Though there were painful setbakcs for Israel because of their lack of faith, yet the general theme is that of taking possession of the land God had given them, and this by disposessing their enemies.

The book compares with Ephesians in the New Testament, for the land of Canaan speaks of "heavenly places," the present blessed sphere into which believers are brought "in Christ Jesus." Our blessings are in heavenly places (Eph. 1:3); our position is there (ch. 2:6); and our conflict is there also (ch. 6:12). And in order for us to take proper possession of our possessions, we must have on "the whole armor of God," by which to resist and defeat the hosts of Satan, who would hinder our enjoying what is rightly ours. Therefore, the Word of God is to be our meditation "day and night" (Josh. 1:8). And Joshua is a type of "Christ in you," that is, in all His saints, leading them in victory over all the enemy's power. By faith let our feet tread in that good land, and make it experimentally our own.

In those days there was no king in Israel; every man did what was right in his own eyes. Judges 21:25

Judges is a sad contrast to Joshua. It deals with the time in which a succession of judges followed Joshua as governors of Israel in their land. But its main theme is that of Israel's failure to take possession of all their land. Instead, through indifference or weakness (or both), they did not drive out the enemies of God, so that those enemies often and again brought Israel into subjection to them. Again and again, through disobedience to God, they were overcome by enemies*, yet on every such occasion God in wonderful mercy raised up a deliverer for them.

This reminds us of those books in the New Testament, such as Galatians and I Corinthians, written because of the need of serious reproof and correction. Though we may in some degree be enjoying the pure truth of the living Word of God, our inheritance ‑ that great land of the heavenly places with its innumerable blessings ‑ remains very largely unpossessed by the saints of God. Lack of faith, lack of spiritual energy, lack of genuine love for Christ, has left us too indifferent to the precious fulness of the possessions that are properly ours.

The last verse of the book of Judges, quoted, above, emphasizes Israel's unthankful independence in those days, each man doing right in his own eyes. A spirit of insubjection to proper authority will leave any of us just as barren of spiritual prosperity.

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