Friday, June 29, 2012

Hosea Bible Study Notes Chapter 3


6/29/2012

Hosea 3

-The LORD instructs Hosea to go back “again” and love this woman of harlotry (adultery, forsaking) as a loving and dedicated husband “even as the LORD loves the sons of Israel (Hosea 3:1).” Even though they had turned to other gods and loved their own raisin cakes (a reference to their selfish nature, for more explanation see http://thinkhebrew.wordpress.com/2010/08/03/haggah-on-some-raisin-cakes/) God had the heart to buy them back and instructed Hosea to illustrate that by his actions. *Application* This purchase of God for our redemption comes through Jesus Christ the Lord and Savior (Acts 20:28, Revelation 5:9).

“What a wonderful maker
What a wonderful savior
How majestic your whispers
And how humble your love
With a strength like no other
And the heart of a father
How majestic your whispers
What a wonderful God”

(From Wonderful Maker, Jeremy Camp- http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7OrzWb4xhwI)

-Some prophecy is revealed now in verse four. The sons of Israel would go many days without king or prince (referring to their exile and the time of the Gentiles, Luke 21:24), sacrifice or sacred pillar, ephod, or household idol. This refers to the idolatrous practices being carried out by Israel in false worship to false gods making a mockery of the One-True Living God. Because of their disobedience there would be many days of isolation and dispersion from their True Husband spiritually speaking. *Application* This is exactly what we have seen from the children of Israel even to this day. Paul speaks of this in Romans 9-11. Focus on Romans 11:25. There has been a hardening of the Jewish mind, but the LORD will return to them and heal all their distress.

-This is why the LORD through Hosea can say “afterward” as He begins verse five of this amazing little chapter. There is important language of returning and seeking the LORD and David their king (this is an obvious reference in a deeper sense to the Messiah, Jesus). The prophet says that they will come trembling to the LORD and His goodness in the last days. *Application* God is always faithful and paints the eschatology of what will transpire in the end of this age on earth. His people will eventually find Him and His goodness again. What a wonderful day that will be when they recognize their LORD with fear and trembling (Zechariah 12:10). Our benefit as Gentiles is that God has opened up His great salvation for us. This has always been His plan and He extends the opportunity for even us to turn to Him for salvation. We have been grafted in (Romans 11)!

Verse to Memorize: Hosea 3:5

Thursday, June 28, 2012

Hosea Bible Study Notes Chapter 2

6/28/2012
Hosea 2

-God continues to speak through the prophet Hosea condemning Israel’s unfaithfulness using the illustration of the harlot. In His discipline He will strip her naked, expose her, make her like a barren wilderness (or desert), and slay her with thirst. His compassion will not be available for her children, and her direction will be confused and pent up with obstacles (thorns). *Application* The end result and purpose of God’s discipline is important for us to underscore here (Hosea 2:7). He wants His unfaithful one to come back to Him, the first husband. He desires for us to see the futility of our wayward ways and realize that He is better than the worldly system with its lies and deceptions. God is the great Provider and He is jealous for us (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JoC1ec-lYps).

-God says that she (referring to Israel and all of His people) followed her lovers and forgot Me (Hosea 2:13). *Application* What a tragedy when we lose sight of our God and go our own way. His punishment comes upon us as a consequence to draw us back and remember who our LORD is.

-Verse 14 is the turning point. At the point of total rejection the LORD allures her back, bringing her into the wilderness to speak kindly to her. This is where she will find her vineyards (fruit, well being). In the most troublesome spot is her salvation. In the valley of Achor (the word means “trouble,” it is a reference to Joshua 7 where Achan sinned by keeping forbidden war plunder at this site and brought great disaster upon the children of Israel) there will actually be a door of hope (Hosea 2:15). *Application* God uses even our negative experiences to create opportunities to turn back to Him. He is pursuing us with His righteous Right Hand to remove our sin and dysfunction.

-God is at work to destroy the false gods and claim His rightful place as Husband to His people. In this eradication section we see future covenant language and abolition from violence and wars. His people, as well as those who receive Him that were not of His people (Hosea 2:23), will be safe and secure under His shelter and they will be betrothed to Him forever in righteousness, justice, lovingkindness, compassion, faithfulness, and above all knowing Him (Hosea 2:19-20). He will respond and take His people in. *Application* This time has not yet been seen in its total fulfillment. As with many Scriptures there is a now but not quite yet aspect to the prophecy. We have seen in our own spirits the change that comes about when we accept the LORD and His salvation through Jesus Christ, yet there is a coming glorification and perfection in the future that will trump even our present joy. Oh how we look forward to that time! We groan and long for it (Romans 8:18-28)!


Verse to Memorize: Hosea 2:20

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Hosea Bible Study Notes Chapter 1

6/27/2012

Hosea 1

-The LORD comes to Hosea for the first time telling him he will take a wife of harlotry because the land (nation of Israel) has committed flagrant unfaithfulness to the LORD by forsaking Him (Hosea 1:2). Idolatry then is the key theme that the LORD addresses with Hosea and this book will explore God’s response to His people’s unfaithfulness in light of His character and attributes previously given in His Word (Exodus 34:6-7). In this classic book we will see the full measure of God’s grace proving that the Old Testament underscores each attribute of the LORD in the same manner as the New Testament. *Application* There is perfect congruity and convergence of the two distinct revelations of God. Don’t let anyone tell you that God has changed or is more lenient in the coming of Jesus Christ. His grace has always abounded, and it is His desperate-unceasing plea for us to return to Him with a broken and contrite heart (Psalm 51:17) that defines His nature and will.

-The LORD tells His prophet Hosea to go and marry a wife of harlotry, and the prophet obeys. *Application* God will often put His servants in difficult life circumstances so that His purposes and messages can be accomplished. This is the perfect illustration of the character of God. Get the point…He loves us and calls us to Himself even though He knows will are unfaithful and transgress His ways. He is a merciful God that wants all of us in perfect union even though we don’t deserve it. His grace is sufficient where our loyalty to Him is not. We, as Israel, have broken covenant with Him every time we sin and break His holy heart. God is persistent to pursue us even in our fallen and messed up condition. This is who He is. What a marvelous thought concerning the truth of our Maker! Give Him praise and glory!

-Even with this characteristic of the LORD being displayed, we see here in this chapter three children with prophetic names given to them being born of Gomer. Jezreel will spell the end of the Northern Kingdom of Israel. Lo-ruhamah presents the running out of God’s compassion at a certain point of disobedience and rejection. Lo-ammi denotes a breaking away as to this group fulfilling the covenant of God. This Northern Israel who broke from Judah will no longer be His people in prophecy fulfillment and nationhood, yet we see that they will known as the sons of the living God. It is prophesied that one day the sons of Judah and the sons of Israel (Northern Kingdom) will be gathered together and will have one leader. *Application* This, I believe, represents the coming back together under the Name of Jesus Christ, which also includes Gentiles in God’s glorious Kingdom of every tribe and nation. This will be the great day of Jezreel, which actually represents “a scattering.” In verse 4 it represented judgment, but now in this last verse of the chapter the scattering has the sense of a farmer spreading out seed for a harvest. This is a sign of a new day and a new relationship between God and man (specifically here His children Israel).

Verse to Memorize: Hosea 1:2

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Exodus Bible Study Notes Chapter 40

6/26/2012

Exodus 40

-Moses erects the tabernacle on the first day of the first month in their second year of release from Egyptian captivity (Exodus 40:17). He, again as we saw in chapter 39, accomplished the work just as the LORD commanded and it was anointed and consecrated unto Him. Everything was in its place and the glory of the LORD could now indwell this perfectly completed vessel. As the book of Exodus ends, God’s presence was with them, and when He moved, they moved, when He stayed, they stayed (Exodus 40:36-37). *Application* This we can note is a picture of the Christian life completed in the work of Jesus Christ in His perfect life, substitutionary death on the cross, burial, and resurrection. Receiving Him completes us and finishes the tabernacle of our lives anointing and consecrating us for His abiding presence within us. We see the indwelling power of the Holy Spirit in this typology. He is the One who moves and directs us in the paths that we should travel in His will and plan. When He says stay, we should stay; when He says go, we should go. He directs, guides, teaches, and leads as He is always with us (paraclyte, John 14:26; 15:26; 16:7). Therefore, we should view this passage as a picture of the Spirit-filled life of the believer. God has established a New Covenant initiated by the blood of Jesus Christ and indwells us, His children, to will and to work His good purposes (Jeremiah 31:31-34, Luke 22:20, 2 Corinthians 3:6, Philippians 2:13, Hebrews 12:24).

Verse to Memorize: Exodus 40:38

Monday, June 25, 2012

Exodus Bible Study Notes Chapter 39

6/25/2012
Exodus 39

-The garments meant for ministering in the holy place were outlined and detailed unto the completion of the work done “as the LORD commanded.” This phrase is repeated nine times in the chapter, which should alert us to the importance of it. *Application* How critical is it to carry out the LORD’s commands in our life? Often we know what God is calling us to do. It is very clear in His Word, yet we neglect Him and His demands. Blessing is in the following of the LORD’s commands. It is no coincidence that the chapter ends with Moses’ blessing of the children of Israel due to their completion of the work that God had assigned. Whatever God has called you to do, do it with all your might and increase in it (Deuteronomy 6:5, Matthew 22:37-40, Colossians 3:23, 1 Timothy 4:14-15, 2 Peter 1:13). There will be peace in your good conscience towards your Heavenly Father as you obey His imperative commands. This is not what saves us for eternity (the work of Jesus Christ does that), but it is what blesses us on this earth by ensuring proper fellowship with our Maker.

Verse to Memorize: Exodus 39:32

Saturday, June 23, 2012

Exodus Bible Study Notes Chapter 38

6/23/2012
Exodus 38

-The work is now completed on the tabernacle by the hands of Bezalel, Oholiab, and the rest of the skilled workman that gave their talents and abilities and treasures for the commanded project. A detailed account is given as to the dimensions and details of the diverse aspects of the tabernacle and it courts. This chapter focuses on the altar of burnt offering made of acacia wood and overlaid with bronze along with all its needed utensils and d├ęcor. The court was also detailed with its pillars, curtains, sockets, and screens. There were exact numbers for all the supplies in gold, silver, and bronze. A number of those men who passed over were also given twenty years old and upward. 603,550 men give us the enormity of the camp group Moses had direction over. *Application* The sense of accomplishment in a completed task that God has assigned is phenomenal. I’m sure these men were overjoyed at the success of this project as everyone pitched in and gave what they could to complete the project. Whatever projects or visions you have before you, keep in mind the end goal and work hard to accomplish the things God has set before you to complete. He has no pleasure in those who do not follow through and finish the work (Hebrews 12:1-2). Be a finisher!

Verse to Memorize: Exodus 38:21

Friday, June 22, 2012

Exodus Bible Study Notes Chapter 37

6/22/2012

Exodus 37 

-The work on the furniture for the tabernacle headed up by Bezalel is depicted for our information here in chapter 37. The ark, the mercy seat, the two cherubim (angelic depictions), the table (with its untensils, dishes, pans, bowls, and jars), the lampstand, and the altar of incense were all covered with pure gold in their instructed dimensions. Along with these the holy anointing oil and incense spices were made as the work of a perfumer. *Application* What strikes me is how everything was covered in the purest of gold. This reminds of our future with Christ in the New Jerusalem with streets of pure gold (Revelation 21:21). This will be a beautiful sight as one can imagine. In this present age the city of Jerusalem is adorned with beautiful pale, meleke and dolomitic limestone as old as the earth. Its foundation walls, ancient buildings, as well as modern masonry are all this white stone that was mandated throughout the city in all new structures in 1918 by British law. This requirement has remained in effect to this day and creates a uniform appearance in the holy city that is splendid and breath taking. The only noticeable variation to the limestone (which makes up nearly all sidewalks and steps as well) is the dome of the rock, which is covered in gold. This dome shines forth as the dominant center piece of the city where the Temple once stood (and will stand again). This shining gold is to me a glimpse into what will make up the New Jerusalem in God’s glory and radiance when He comes and makes things completely perfect.

Verse to Memorize: Exodus 37:1

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Exodus Bible Study Notes Chapter 36

6/21/2012

Exodus 36

-The craftsmen get down to the nitty-gritty of working on the tabernacle here and the work proceeds unhindered because of their willing heart and spirit. They do all that the LORD commanded and He blessed their work.

-The people continued to bring freewill offerings of the supplies that they needed for the work. In fact there was an over abundance and the decree went forth not to bring any more because the resources were more than sufficient to perform all the work they needed to do. *Application* It is a beautiful thing when God’s people get united for a project of Kingdom proportions. There is an energy and passion when the LORD gives us a mind for His purposes (Philippians 2). This necessitates us dying to ourselves and living in the greater work of His will (Galatians 2:20, Colossians 1:27).

-The remainder of the chapter details the construction process.

Verse to Memorize: Exodus 36:7

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Exodus Bible Study Notes Chapter 35

6/20/2012
Exodus 35

-Now we see the working out of the things God had commanded in the tabernacle construction. The people had a gracious and giving nature to bring in all that was needed to accomplish the large task of providing a material sanctuary that the LORD could dwell in during their journey through the wilderness. Whoever’s heart was moved and stirred brought a freewill offering of all that was required for the tabernacle. Many times the text refers to their hearts in regards to their willingness in the contribution. *Application* We know that the LORD loves a cheerful giver (2 Corinthians 9:7). This is the great requirement when it comes to our contribution to Him and His work. This is not only treasure (i.e. money, valuables, etc.), but our time and talent. Notice how Bezalel was given the Spirit of God in wisdom, understanding, knowledge, and all craftsmanship (Exodus 35:31).  He used his gifts and abilities for the work of the LORD as he was designed to do. Not only that, but he taught others to fill them with the skills needed to accomplish the work. God places in us incredible creative abilities and inventive work. We should have a heart to use these talents for His glory and praise. Be a giver!

Verse to Memorize: Exodus 35:21

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Exodus Bible Study Notes Chapter 34

6/19/2012
Exodus 34 

-The Two Tablets of the Covenant and God’s Ten Commandments are given again to Moses on top of Mt. Sinai and reestablished here in chapter 34. The LORD’s proclamation concerning Himself is important here. “The LORD, the LORD God, compassionate and gracious, slow to anger, and abounding in lovingkindness and truth; who keeps lovingkindness for thousands, who forgives iniquity, transgression and sin; yet He will by no means leave the guilty unpunished, visiting the iniquity of fathers on the children and on the grandchildren to the third and fourth generation (Exodus 34:6-7).” This phraseology is often repeated in the Word of God and gives us a true picture of His nature. He is patient; He is kind. But, He is also just and demands our recognition and repentance (a turning away from sin) for forgiveness. *Application* Psalm 32 best describes what our response should be to a loving God who wants proper relationship and fellowship with His created children. This is also Moses’ response when he hears the words of the LORD. He quickly bowed low to the earth and worshipped the King of kings. He begged His favor and presence not just for himself, but also for his people. He was an intercessor.

-God renewed His covenant because of His great grace and mercy. Let us never forget His kindnesses. He was exacting and clear, but He also was flexible. He made a way back to Himself when it was certainly not required of Him. *Application* Over and over in Scripture we see the nature of God being One who gives multiple chances to come to Him and submit to His authority. He is forbearing with us when we grieve and quench His Spirit within us. Take time today to come before him as Moses did and worship this forgiving Sovereign who loves us soooo much!

-God again gives warning as to His exclusivity. He is attempting to prepare His people so that they do not make covenants with the enemy, which would become a snare and a means of stumbling in their faith (Exodus 34:12). God is called by the Name Jealous (Exodus 34:14). *Application* He does not want to play the harlot with any other gods (Exodus 34:15-16). In other words, our faithfulness to Him alone is required and expected. Our worship is to be centered on Him only. The god of this age is often money. Has this god become a snare to your obedience to Him? Has it enslaved you because of your allegiance to it? Jesus said plainly, “No servant can serve two masters; for either he will hate the one, and love the other, or else he will hold to one, and despise the other. You cannot serve God and mammon (money) (Luke 16:13)." When Jesus said this before the Pharisees, He was scoffed at and ridiculed by the money lovers (Luke 16:14). How will you receive this word today?

-Finally, Moses was filled with brilliance in radiant glory by being in the presence of God. His light shone on all who observed him as he came back to the people to the point that he had to place a veil over his face because it scared the people (Exodus 34:30). He would take off the veil when talking with God, but put it back on in the presence of the assembly. *Application* Our light should also be shining as “a city set on a hill (Matthew 5:14-16).” Jesus is the true Light and in Him we see clearly (John 8:12). He is the One who gives us illumination. Allow His Light to shine in you so that all you come into contact with will have a chance to see and know Him.

Verses to Memorize: Exodus 34:5-7

Monday, June 18, 2012

Exodus Bible Study Notes Chapter 33

6/18/2012
Exodus 33

-The LORD tells Moses that it is time to depart from the Sinai area where they had been venturing toward the land of promise. God had taken care of the business He needed to and would lead them out after He replaced the two tablets that Moses broke (Exodus 34). He promised he would send forth His angel to drive out the enemies of Israel: the Canaanite, the Amorite, the Hittite, the Perizzite, the Hivite, and the Jebusite. This Promised Land would be a land flowing with milk and honey, the sustenance they would need to live.

-God, however, related He would not go in their midst anymore because they were “an obstinate people” and He would “destroy them on the way (Exodus 33:3).” This broke the people’s hearts and they went into mourning and gave up all their ornaments. This was a demonstration of brokenness and repentance. God did go with them and would meet with Moses face to face outside the camp in the tent of meeting. Whenever Moses would enter the tent, the pillar of cloud would descend and stand at the entrance, and God would speak with Moses. This awesome sight would cause the children of Israel to rise and worship the LORD at their own tent entrance. *Application* God again we see is in the relenting, compassionate business. He made flexible agreements with His people to stay close to them. Thank the LORD today that He will never leave us or forsake us even when we are unfaithful to Him. His love never ends!

-It is interesting that Joshua continually stayed in the tent of meeting. This was more than likely primarily a guarding occupation that he was taking up. It was a continuation of his development as a military and spiritual leader of the people.

-Favor becomes the theme as the chapter crescendos. Moses does not want to move at all unless he knows the LORD is with them by His presence. He wants to be shown the glory of the LORD in all His radiance (Exodus 33:18). The LORD does show His servant His back as He covers with His Hand until His front side passes by. *Application* God has His ways of showing us just what He desires. Even though Moses was enabled to speak face to face with his King and Sovereign there were limits to seeing the glory of the LORD. Again we see the mystery and intrigue of following this Majesty. From our perspective we will never fully comprehend His ways. They are higher than ours. However, the fact remains that He was gracious and compassionate revealing parts of Himself and giving blessing and favor and His presence to His chosen people. He will do that with us as well in an even more powerful way through His Holy Spirit in this age of the New Covenant.

Verse to Memorize: Exodus 33:13

Saturday, June 16, 2012

Exodus Bible Study Notes Chapter 32

6/16/2012
Exodus 32

-This important chapter of Scripture involves the saga of the golden calf and the obstinate children of Israel at the foot of Mt. Sinai. The people grew impatient with the return of Moses, who was up on the mount for 40 days and nights with the LORD (Exodus 24:18). They assembled around Aaron and wanted him to make them an object of worship since they had no idea what had happened to Moses. They gathered gold, and Aaron fashioned a molten calf with a graving tool and called it the god who lead them out of Egypt proclaiming a feast to the LORD for the next day. This was understandable when we consider the nature of man and the culture that these individuals lived in. In Egypt, ultra popular gods were Hapi (Apis) and Hathor, which were thought of as a bull and a heifer. This would appeal to the Israelites because of their work with livestock in Goshen. In Canaan, where they were headed, the primary form of worship revolved around Baal, who was also thought of as a bull. Baal was a sacred symbol of power and fertility and was closely related to immoral sexual practices. It would have been natural for the people to turn away from a God that they could not see to a form of god they worshipped in ignorance made of gold, which was tangible and understandable. They quickly forgot the God without a face and His command just given them about not making an idol, or “any likeness of what is in heaven above or on the earth beneath or in the water under the earth (Exodus 20:4).” *Application* Our conceptions of God can easily be swayed in the same direction if we are not careful. We must stay on the straight line of Scripture (the cannon) to gain our understanding of the LORD. We can easily venture off the straight and narrow into man-made constructions of who and what God is. Anything that deviates off of what the Bible gives as the truth of who God is will lead into idolatry. If we are not careful we can be persuaded to follow the gods of this age and culture. These are misrepresentations of who God really is. Trust in His Word; it is the truth as to who the actual God is. Don’t make a form of god in your own image. The problem is that the Israelites, like ourselves, wanted to figure God out and comprehend Him. This is impossible other than His Divine revelation. In many ways we will never figure God out and comprehend Him on this side of heaven. This is a good thing because He is above us, His creation, in every way.

-God knew they had corrupted themselves in turning away from His recent commands that they said they would follow (Exodus 24:3). God called them obstinate and His anger burned against them to the point He was going to destroy them and rebuild His nation through Moses. I believe this was simply a test to see Moses’ response. The prophecies of the LORD would have to remain intact. He had promised the Messiah through Judah’s line of which Moses was not (Genesis 49:10). Moses’ response was correct and cooled the anger of God, yet when he saw the apostasy for himself his anger burned equally as strong. The important point here is that God relented from His anger. Here is a translation issue that I believe many well intentioned translators misrepresent. The term, which is primarily translated “relented, repented, or changed his mind” has the meaning actually of “compassion, feeling sorry for, and taking pity” in the Hebrew (check any Hebrew lexicon, Exodus 32:12, 14). This gives us a better description of what was happening in the mind of the LORD as He dealt with the disobedience of His people. They deserved harm. They had transgressed His commands and were under His just wrath. They were worshipping falsely and were engaging in pagan forms of celebratory feasting that could be termed almost as being an orgy. This is what the term often translated “rose up to play,” or “revelry” is all about (Exodus 32:6). *Application* God has every right to destroy us when we rebel against His authority and transgress His ways. Thankfully for us, He is a God who is gracious and compassionate taking pity on us when we sin (Exodus 34:6, 2 Chronicles 30:9, Nehemiah 9:31, Psalm 103:8, Joel 2:13, Jonah 4:2 to name just a few instances of this phrase). This is the heart of God. His mercy endures forever! Thank You Jesus!

Verse to Memorize: Exodus 32:14

Friday, June 15, 2012

Exodus Bible Study Notes Chapter 31

6/15/2012
Exodus 31

-Here in this chapter we see some interesting and completed thoughts and writings in the arenas of craftsmanship and rest. God completes His speaking with Moses on the mountain and gives him the stone tablets of the testimony, which were written by His finger.

-God uses the gifts, talents, and abilities in His precise callings. He calls by name Bezalel from the tribe of Judah and Oholiab from the tribe of Dan as skilled craftsmen to do the work of the tabernacle. They would need great artistry in the prescribe designs of gold, silver, bronze, cutting stones for settings, carving of wood in all the different requirements for God’s place of worship. Nothing was left out. All the things the LORD commanded for tabernacle worship are listed here for these men and their helpers are appointed to them for completion. These are the men that carry out the work and bring glory to God through the skills that He had blessed them with. *Application* There is certainly no unimportant part of the body of Christ. He gifts and ordains each part of it (1 Corinthians 12, Romans 12, Ephesians 4:1-15, 1 Peter 4:10-11). Recognize and embrace the giftings that the LORD has endowed you with for His Kingdom work (1 Timothy 4:14).

-Rest is the final key component that the LORD reiterates with His servant Moses. The Sabbath rest is to be surely observed as a sign between God and His people throughout all generations for the purpose of them knowing that it is He who sanctifies (sets apart, purifies). It is holy to the people and is punishable by death or being cut off from the society if they profane or disregard it. This also reiterates the six days of creation as being literal. On the seventh day God rested from His labor as a completed-good work and was refreshed (Genesis 1:31-2:3, Exodus 31:17). *Application* Too often we want to strive and strive and strive. Even when we may be doing good and needed work in the Name of the LORD, we can become burned out and exhausted. God’s prescription is abundantly clear. We need that time of refreshing each week that we set apart as holy, reflecting on Him and doing no intensive work. Take the time each week to get your proper spiritual, mental, physical, and emotional rest. Recharge so that you stay sharp in the work that you are doing in continuity and with endurance. At times we may even need sabbatical type rests to refocus and abide in the LORD. Nothing is more important than tuning in to His voice and His plans for us. If we are not careful in our modern-busy society, we will get too bogged down in the minutia and totally miss the bigger, more important things that the LORD intends for our lives. Take thought to how God renews you through His periods of rest in your life. Also, appreciate the times of rest and reflection He gives you and do not fret over what is not being done. God is in control and will work even when we sleep (Psalm 127:1-2).

Verse to Memorize: Exodus 31:18

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Exodus Bible Study Notes Chapter 30

6/14/2012
Exodus 30

-The descriptions and activities of the alter of incense, the incense itself, the washing laver, and the anointing oil along with a census ransom contribution are given here in this 30th chapter of Exodus. The incense shall bring a soothing aroma to the LORD daily in front of the veil near the Ark of the Testimony in front of the mercy seat. *Application* Ephesians 5:2 says, “and walk in love, just as Christ also loved you, and gave Himself up for us, an offering and a sacrifice to God as a fragrant aroma.” 2 Corinthians 2:14-16 adds, “But thanks be to God, who always leads us in His triumph in Christ, and manifests through us the sweet aroma of the knowledge of Him in every place. For we are a fragrance of Christ to God among those who are being saved and among those who are perishing; to the one an aroma from death to death, to the other an aroma from life to life. And who is adequate for these things?” Once again we see the Tabernacle requirements reflected in the Christian life as the New Covenant takes shape under the authority of Jesus Christ and His work. Giving Christ our lives and presenting Him to others is the sweet aroma He desires in us.

-With the ransom contribution we see that all are on an equal footing. It brings to my mind Acts 10:34, Galatians 3:28, and 1 Corinthians 12:13. God shows no partiality. There is no way the rich man can buy off God and the poor cannot avoid paying his ransom. *Application* Thank the LORD that Jesus Christ paid our ransom for sin on the cross. His blood purchased our redemption with the Father. All to Him we owe!

-The laver of bronze for the washing depicts the cleanness with which we must enter the holy place of God. *Application* Again, it is Jesus Christ who washes all our sins away and allows us to boldly approach the throne of God for our time of need (Hebrews 4:16).

-The anointing oil represents the Spirit of God’s covering for His most holy place. This again consecrates the activities of the priests in the work of the LORD. *Application* The Holy Spirit must permeate all we do in the Name of the LORD. Without His presence we are doing things in our own human strength. This is never what God wills or has designed.

Verse to Memorize: Exodus 30:10

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Exodus Bible Study Notes Chapter 29

6/13/2012
Exodus 29

-The commands for consecration, ordination, and anointing the priests of the LORD are given here in this chapter. There are specific rules and guidelines that are to be followed for proper order and designation of the holy place where the LORD would meet with His people. The key factor is that He is the LORD their God who brought them out of the land of Egypt (slavery, a metaphor for sin and the lost and dying life before Christ’s salvation). God would dwell with them as their LORD. This is absolutely significant and necessitates a solemn set of rituals to purify the holy place. *Application* What do we do to consecrate our lives before God? He has expectations for us that our laid out for us in the Scriptures. He expects us to abide by these good precepts for wisdom, success, favor, and blessing. Shunning the Word of the LORD has disastrous consequences in our lives. Pay attention to what He tells you to do for the sake of obedience and proper fellowship with Him. You won’t regret it even though there may be pain in the offering; persecution and testing are what I am referring to here. God desires to dwell with us just as much as He did when the children of Israel. Let Him walk beside you through His Holy Spirit. You’ll experience the most amazing things in life! He is our comforter, counselor, convictor, illuminator, enabler, and helper (Acts 1:8, John 14:26). This is the abundant life that the LORD wants you to have in Him (John 10:10).

Verse to Memorize: Exodus 29:46

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Exodus Bible Study Notes Chapter 28

6/12/2012
Exodus 28

-God outlines the holy garments for Aaron, and his sons, to wear as priests before the LORD. These robes, tunics, ephods, turbans, and sashes were for the glory and beauty of worship in the presence of the LORD so that they could minister unto God consecrated and set apart. *Application* We know that it is the heart that God is most concerned about and this consecration was to be an outward demonstration of an inward reality. Sadly, we see in the course of Israel’s history there were many times that the outward appearance did not match up with the inward reality (Jeremiah 32:32). God looks ultimately at the heart and will judge us not on what we present outwardly, but what the inner man truly is (1 Samuel 16:7, Proverbs 27:19, Jeremiah 17:10, Luke 6:45).

-The stones of the ephod are interesting in eschatology. The foundation stones of the New Jerusalem closely resemble these precious stones laid out here for the priests (Revelation 21:19-20). This to me demonstrates the glory and beauty of what God is preparing. The LORD is amazing in splendor and radiance and will bestow all good things in His glory to His people.

-The names of the tribes of Israel are to be worn as a memorial. God wanted His people to always remember and honor the history of His works and power that He demonstrated in setting the captives free. This was a simple but effective way to do that.

-The names of the sons of Israel were to be carried in the breastplate of judgment over the heart of the priest when they entered the holy place. They, the priests, carried the judgment of the sons of Israel over there heart before the LORD continually. They were anointed, ordained, and consecrated as ministering priests before God (Exodus 28:41). *Application* This once again points to the ultimate high priest, Jesus Christ, who daily bears our burden of sin before the LORD (Psalm 68:19). He, like the priests of old, was the “go between” with the Father to bridge the gap between the holy and the profane. The priests bore the judgment so that the people would not have to die. This is the propitiation that Christ gives us as believers in Him (Romans 3:25, Hebrews 2:17, 1 John 2:2; 4:10).

Verse to Memorize: Exodus 28:2

Monday, June 11, 2012

Exodus Bible Study Notes Chapter 27

6/11/2012
Exodus 27 

-The bronze alter and the courtyard measurements and requirements for the tabernacle are outlined in this chapter. The bronze alter would be the first thing one encountered when entering the tabernacle courtyard. This was the place where sacrifices were made. Its presence was a constant reminder to the people that the only way they could come before God was through a sacrifice. *Application* Paul tells us in Romans 12:1-2 that by the mercies of God we are to present our bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable unto God. This is the radical transformation that comes with the initiation of the new covenant ratified in the blood of Jesus Christ by His death, burial, and resurrection (Hebrews 8:6-9:28). The Savior’s once and for all time sacrifice releases us from the penalty and burden of sin when we accept it by faith into our lives. This changes us from a sinful-separated state with the Father into a union, which is sealed by the Holy Spirit (Ephesians 4:30). The Spirit transforms us into saints, making us servants and soldiers of the most high God conforming more and more into His image (Romans 1:1, Philippians 2:25, 2 Timothy 2:3-4). This process is what the Bible calls sanctification (Romans 6:19-23, 2 Thessalonians 2:13, Hebrews 12:14). Thank God for His incredible grace to sacrifice Himself so that we could have eternal life with Him! He bought us with a price (1 Corinthians 6:20).

-The other consideration in this passage for us today is the continual burning of the lamp required from evening to morning as a perpetual statute throughout the generations for the sons of Israel. The priests, Aaron and his sons, had this responsibility. *Application* Light as we know illuminates. The pure olive oil is representative of the Holy Spirit and the gifts and graces He gives us as believers. He, the Holy Spirit, is the One who illuminates our understanding of God through His revealed Word. God’s tabernacle in our world today is the church, the body of believers in Jesus Christ (who is the Head). We are to light the world with the message and knowledge of the Almighty to those who are lost and dying (Matthew 5:14-16). Go light your world with the love of Christ!

-Again, all these components of the God’s design in the tabernacle are pointings and tutors to our new covenant life in Christ Jesus helping us understand our roles and responsibilities in Him.

Verse to Memorize: Exodus 27:1

Saturday, June 9, 2012

Exodus Bible Study Notes Chapter 26

6/9/2012
Exodus 26 

-The curtains and boards for the tabernacle are described in great detail for us in this chapter. Fine twisted linen of blue, purple, and scarlet material made up the curtains and veils, the work of skillful craftsmen. There were curtains made out of goat hair curtains and rams’ skins with a covering of porpoise skins above. Acacia wood made up the boards fitted together and standing upright for the sides and corners of the tabernacle.

-The veil description and the layout between the holy place and the holy of holies are given. The shape of the tabernacle accurately makes the shape of a cross from the western top to the eastern bottom. This is not just ironic; it is a pointing to the Deliverer who would come and tear down the veil of separation between God and man. This Deliverer was none other than Jesus Christ, our blessed redeemer.

Verse to Memorize: Exodus 26:30

Friday, June 8, 2012

Exodus Bible Study Notes Chapter 25

6/8/2012
Exodus 25 

-The LORD gives Moses instructions for the tabernacle beginning in this section of Scripture. The instructions begin with telling the Israelites to raise a contribution for God. As the people’s hearts are moved shall the contribution be raised (Exodus 25:2). *Application* God’s work is usually accomplished through His people and their generosity. He wants our freewill offerings as demonstrations of our devotion and love for Him even in the modern era. We are not necessarily raising the items requested here in Exodus, but God does move our hearts to give to His causes all the time if we care to listen to His Spirit within us. Who or what is God asking you to bless for His Kingdom’s sake today?

-The detailed descriptions of the Ark, the table of showbread, and the golden lampstand are given in the subsequent passages of this chapter. These complicated instructions give us a glimpse into God’s greatness and transcendent quality. These were to be carefully crafted items that could be transported, which demonstrated God’s willingness to go with the children of Israel wherever they ventured. He is not a God who leaves and forsakes. God is with us, Immanuel (Isaiah 7:14; 8:8-10, Matthew 1:23). *Application* Christ in you, the Holy Spirit’s presence, is our hope of glory (Colossians 1:27).

-God will speak from His mercy seat above the Ark of the Covenant. The testimony of His Word was to be placed into the Ark itself. The word for mercy here in the Hebrew is kaporet, which literally means “atonement,” giving the sense of wiping away, covering over, pacifying, making propitiation. Some of you may be familiar with the Jewish Yom Kippur, which is the Day of Atonement having the same basic Hebrew root for word meaning. *Application* Obviously this has significance of meaning to us as well. God gives His commands but sits enthroned upon a mercy seat that is all about forgiveness and peace. He has always provided a covering for those who would call out to Him in faith (Genesis 3:21; 6:14, Romans 10:13). What a gracious God we serve!

-So we can sum up here some incredible aspects of the LORD shown in these worship requirements. First, in the Ark we see His presence, which will go with them throughout their journey and bring them peacefully into His good graces. Second, the table of showbread is significant because of His provision. Jesus said that He was the bread of life (John 6:29-51). He is the ultimate One who provides us with what we need in relationship with the Father. God provides! Thirdly, the golden lampstand signifies light and a clearing away of the darkness. Jesus also said that He was the Light of the world (John 8:12). In light we can see the right way to go and not stumble around in the darkness. Christ is the way, the truth, and the life (John 14:6)!

Verse to Memorize: Exodus 25:9

Thursday, June 7, 2012

Exodus Bible Study Notes Chapter 24

6/7/2012
Exodus 24 

-Here in this chapter we see the people of Israel affirming the covenant with God. The important phrase that is repeated is this, “All that the LORD has spoken we will do, and we will be obedient (Exodus 24:7).” Moses writes down all the words of the LORD and there is a ceremonial altar built at the foot of the mountain with twelve pillars for the twelve tribes of Israel. Burnt offerings and peace offerings were offered to the LORD here. At this point some explanation must be made as to the meaning of these sacrifices. The animal’s shed blood was to represent the fact that one life had to be given for another as a substitute for the sinner. On one hand the blood symbolized the death of the animal, but it also represented the life that was spared as a result of the sacrifice. We see here that Moses sprinkled half of the blood of the animals on the alter to show that the sinner could once again approach God because something had died in their place. The other half of the blood was sprinkled on the people to represent the fact that the penalty of their sin had been paid and they could be reunited with God. This symbolic-ceremonial act would be repeated over and over again pointing to the once and for all time sacrifice of Jesus Christ on the cross for the sin of all mankind (Hebrews 7:27; 9:12; 10:10, 1 Peter 3:18). *Application* “Jesus paid it all, all to Him we owe, sin had left a crimson stain, He washed it white as snow.” (From Jesus Paid it All)

-It is interesting that Moses went up with Aaron, Nadab, Abihu, and the seventy elders of Israel and saw God in splendid radiance, yet He did not stretch out His Hand against them. The Bible says they ate and drank in this presence (Exodus 24:11). This denotes how they were now in union with God because of their obedient commitment to the covenant and the sacrifices that were made.

-God calls Moses up on the mountain at this point to give him stone tablets with the law and commandments, which He had written for their instruction. The LORD’s appearance was glorious, like a consuming fire on the mountain top in cloud cover. Moses entered the midst of the cloud and was with the LORD for 40 days and nights. *Application* This communion with God is not just for servants like Moses. It can be for you as well. Jesus Christ has torn down the veil of separation between God and man and we can boldly approach His throne of grace in our time of need (Matthew 27:51, Mark 15:38, Luke 23:45, 2 Corinthians 3:16, Hebrews 4:16; 6:19; 10:12-23). Abide in Him and He will show you his radiant glory in fresh and unique ways. God loves His children and wants to spend time with us. What an amazing concept to contemplate!

Verse to Memorize: Exodus 24:7