Ask Your Preacher

Ask Your Preacher

OLD TESTAMENT

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God's Elect

Friday, June 19, 2020
     I'm confused.  The people of Israel were once God's "chosen people".  Jewish people see Jesus as a prophet, not as the Son of God.  The way to the Father is through the Son (Jesus), so does that mean that Jews will not get to heaven?  What have they done to no longer be "chosen"?

Sincerely,
Not Picky

Dear Not Picky,

All those who reject Christ are lost (Jhn 14:6)… including Jews.  Paul used to visit the synagogues to preach Jesus to them (Acts 18:4).  The Jews are not Jesus’ chosen people; the church is.  Jesus says that Christians are His royal priesthood and chosen race (1 Pet 2:9).  Under the Old Testament, the Jewish people were God’s nation (Deut 7:6).  The Jewish nation was warned that if they rejected God’s Son, they would be rejecting God, and God would make a new nation out of those who believed in Christ (Jesus explained this to the Jews in the parable of the vineyard – Lk 20:9-19).  The vast majority of Jews didn’t believe in Jesus, and therefore, they never became a part of Jesus’ kingdom.  Jesus’ chosen people are those that love Him and keep His commandments (Jhn 14:15).  The Jewish people rejected God because they decided to keep their traditions instead of accepting God’s Son (Mk 7:9).

One Mad Mama

Tuesday, May 26, 2020
     Ex 4:24-26: I don't understand this at all.  Why did God confront Moses and why was He about to kill him?  Why did Zipporah, a Midianite, have any knowledge of this covenant ritual of circumcision, and how could she surmise that as the problem between God and Moses?  And did she and the children continue on to Egypt with Moses?

Thank you!  Please, if there is Scripture to confirm your understanding of this paragraph in Exodus, would you please share it with me also?  Thanks a lot, and God's blessings on you!

Sincerely,
Perplexed

Dear Perplexed,

Ex 4:24-26 is an odd little anecdote in Moses’ life.  We don’t get many details, so everything that we understand about it is from putting very few pieces of information together.  Here is what we know:

  1. God was angry enough with Moses to kill him.
  2. Zipporah, Moses’ wife, circumcised their son, and she wasn’t happy with the fact that she had to perform emergency surgery on her son.
  3. After the circumcision, Moses’ life was spared.

Using these meager pieces of information, our understanding is that God was mad at Moses because he hadn’t obeyed God’s command to circumcise his children.  Remember, circumcision was the sign of God’s covenant with Israel (Acts 7:8).  The fact that Moses, God’s chosen leader for Israel, wasn’t keeping that covenant with his children was a big deal.  Our understanding is that Moses had not circumcised his son, God was angry about it, and Zipporah was aware of the problem, and quickly saved everyone by circumcising her son.

As for whether or not Zipporah and her sons continued to Egypt, Ex 18:2-5 seems to imply that they went back home and met up with Moses once he had led the Israelites out of Egypt.

A Generation Gap

Monday, May 25, 2020
Why did God want all the older generation to die off (wander for forty years in the wilderness), and the younger generation with Joshua go into the promise land?

Sincerely,
A Question For The Ages

Dear A Question For The Ages,

Numbers 14 explains why God had the first generation of Jews that left Egypt wander in the wilderness for forty years.  God was punishing them for their lack of faith in Him.  When Moses sent forty spies to investigate the land of Canaan, the majority of those spies came back and said that it was impossible to conquer the land.  The people were afraid, murmured against God, and planned on returning to Egypt (Num 14:3-4).
God was incensed by their cowardice, lack of faith, and grumbling (Num 14:27).  He decided to punish that generation by having them all die in the wilderness (Num 14:33-34), and their children became the ones to conquer the land (Num 14:31).

No Starving Artists Here

Wednesday, April 29, 2020
     Gen 47:22 and 26 state that “the only land he [Joseph] did not buy was the land belonging to the priests.”  Who were these priests?

Sincerely,
Real Estate Agent

Dear Real Estate Agent,

The priests referred to in Gen. 47:22 and 26 are the Egyptian priests.  Pharaoh had granted his priests food during the famine, so they had no need to sell their land to avoid starvation.

Chariots Of Fire

Thursday, March 12, 2020
     I'm looking for a passage in the Bible I think I read some time ago.  It's where someone's eyes were opened to the spirit world of angels and demons and spiritual warfare.  Can you tell me where this is found?  Or did I just imagine it?

Sincerely,
Looking Around

Dear Looking Around,

The story you are most likely thinking of is Elisha praying that his servant’s eyes would be opened, so he might see the angelic army protecting them.  In 2 Kgs 6:14-15, the king of Syria sent an entire army to surround the city and capture Elisha, and his servant turned to him in fear and asked what they should do.  Elisha told him that there was nothing to fear for those who were with them were greater than the Syrian army (2 Kgs 6:16).  Elisha prayed that God would open his eyes, so he could see the chariots of fire and heavenly horseman protecting them (2 Kgs 6:17-18).

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