Hebrews – Part 3: Jesus: The Danger of Unbelief

The writer of Hebrews stressed the promise of God’s rest is fully realized through Christ whereas unbelief in Christ will meet the severest punishment.

Prologue

“Jesus: The Danger of Unbelief” is part 3 of a 10-part study on the Book of Hebrews. You may view any of the previous parts by clicking one of the links below.

Formats

This sermon is available in text, audio, and video formats.

Illustration

One great and fatal offense under the Old Testament was apostasy from the worship of Jehovah. This was punishable by death. It admitted of no repentance. The author strives to impress upon his readers that their danger was the same, their crime if they forsook Christ would be greater, and their punishment far more severe. It was greater, as much as Christ was greater than Moses, and His blood more sacred than that of bulls and goats. We need this caution and exhortation. – Source Unknown

Scripture

Hebrews 3 (NASB)
1 Therefore, holy brethren, partakers of a heavenly calling, consider Jesus, the Apostle and High Priest of our confession; 2 He was faithful to Him who appointed Him, as Moses also was in all His house. 3 For He has been counted worthy of more glory than Moses, by just so much as the builder of the house has more honor than the house. 4 For every house is built by someone, but the builder of all things is God. 5 Now Moses was faithful in all His house as a servant, for a testimony of those things which were to be spoken later; 6 but Christ was faithful as a Son over His house—whose house we are, if we hold fast our confidence and the boast of our hope firm until the end. 7 Therefore, just as the Holy Spirit says, “Today if you hear His voice, 8 Do not harden your hearts as when they provoked Me, As in the day of trial in the wilderness, 9 Where your fathers tried Me by testing Me, And saw My works for forty years. 10 “Therefore I was angry with this generation, And said, ‘They always go astray in their heart, And they did not know My ways’; 11 As I swore in My wrath, ‘They shall not enter My rest.’ ” 12 Take care, brethren, that there not be in any one of you an evil, unbelieving heart that falls away from the living God. 13 But encourage one another day after day, as long as it is still called “Today,” so that none of you will be hardened by the deceitfulness of sin. 14 For we have become partakers of Christ, if we hold fast the beginning of our assurance firm until the end, 15 while it is said, “Today if you hear his voice, Do not harden your hearts, as when they provoked Me.” 16 For who provoked Him when they had heard? Indeed, did not all those who came out of Egypt led by Moses? 17 And with whom was He angry for forty years? Was it not with those who sinned, whose bodies fell in the wilderness? 18 And to whom did He swear that they would not enter His rest, but to those who were disobedient? 19 Sowe see that they were not able to enter because of unbelief.

Hebrews 4:1-13 (NASB)
1 Therefore, let us fear if, while a promise remains of entering His rest, any one of you may seem to have come short of it. 2 For indeed we have had good news preached to us, just as they also; but the word they heard did not profit them, because it was not united by faith in those who heard. 3 For we who have believed enter that rest, just as He has said, “As I swore in My wrath, They shall not enter My rest,” although His works were finished from the foundation of the world. 4 For He has said somewhere concerning the seventh day: “and God rested on the seventh day from all His works”; 5 and again in this passage, “They shall not enter My rest.” 6 Therefore, since it remains for some to enter it, and those who formerly had good news preached to them failed to enter because of disobedience, 7 He again fixes a certain day, “Today,” saying through David after so long a time just as has been said before, “Today if you hear his voice, Do not harden your hearts.” 8 For if Joshua had given them rest, He would not have spoken of another day after that. 9 So there remains a Sabbath rest for the people of God. 10 For the one who has entered His rest has himself also rested from his works, as God did from His. 11 Therefore let us be diligent to enter that rest, so that no one will fall, through following the same example of disobedience. 12 For the word of God is living and active and sharper than any two-edged sword, and piercing as far as the division of soul and spirit, of both joints and marrow, and able to judge the thoughts and intentions of the heart. 13 And there is no creature hidden from His sight, but all things are open and laid bare to the eyes of Him with whom we have to do.

Opening Prayer

Heavenly Father, through the corruption of sin in the world, we are creatures of unbelief. Help us to be ever mindful of Your love, mercy, and grace. Let us not forget the gift of Your Son, our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. Thank You for Your longsuffering. Help us in times of unbelief. In Jesus’ name, amen.

Probing Question

How does belief in Christ determine receipt of God’s promised rest or the severest punishment of His wrath?

Transitional Sentence

Our belief in Christ determines our receipt of God’s promised rest or the severest punishment of His wrath because…

Main Points

1. Christ is Superior to Moses

Both were faithful

Hebrews 3:1-2 (NASB)
1 Therefore, holy brethren, partakers of a heavenly calling, consider Jesus, the Apostle and High Priest of our confession; 2 He was faithful to Him who appointed Him, as Moses also was in all His house.

Builder vs. Building

Hebrews 3:3-4 (NASB)
3 For He has been counted worthy of more glory than Moses, by just so much as the builder of the house has more honor than the house. 4 For every house is built by someone, but the builder of all things is God.

Servant vs. Son

Hebrews 3:5-6a (NASB)
5 Now Moses was faithful in all His house as a servant, for a testimony of those things which were to be spoken later; 6 but Christ was faithfulas a Son over His house—whose house we are…

2. Danger of Unbelief

Hebrews 3:6b (NASB)  6 …whose house we are, if we hold fast our confidence and the boast of our hope firm until the end.

Israel’s Unbelief in the Wilderness

Hebrews 3:7-11 (NASB)
7 Therefore, just as the Holy Spirit says, “Today if you hear His voice, 8 Do not harden your hearts as when they provoked Me, As in the day of trial in the wilderness, 9 Where your fathers tried Me by testing Me, And saw My works for forty years. 10 “Therefore I was angry with this generation, And said, ‘They always go astray in their heart, And they did not know My ways’; 11 As I swore in My wrath, ‘They shall not enter My rest.’ “

Warning Against Unbelief

Hebrews 3:12-19 (NASB)
12 Take care, brethren, that there not be in any one of you an evil, unbelieving heart that falls away from the living God. 13 But encourage one another day after day, as long as it is still called “Today,” so that none of you will be hardened by the deceitfulness of sin. 14 For we have become partakers of Christ, if we hold fast the beginning of our assurance firm until the end, 15 while it is said, “Today if you hear his voice, Do not harden your hearts, as when they provoked Me.” 16 For who provoked Him when they had heard? Indeed, did not all those who came out of Egypt led by Moses? 17 And with whom was He angry for forty years? Was it not with those who sinned, whose bodies fell in the wilderness? 18 And to whom did He swear that they would not enter His rest, but to those who were disobedient? 19 Sowe see that they were not able to enter because of unbelief.

Hebrews 4:1-2 (NASB)
1 Therefore, let us fear if, while a promise remains of entering His rest, any one of you may seem to have come short of it. 2 For indeed we have had good news preached to us, just as they also; but the word they heard did not profit them, because it was not united by faith in those who heard.

Warning Against Not Entering God’s Rest

  • Necessity of Faith

Hebrews 4:3-11 (NASB)
3 For we who have believed enter that rest, just as He has said, “As I swore in My wrath, They shall not enter My rest,” although His works were finished from the foundation of the world. 4 For He has said somewhere concerning the seventh day: “and God rested on the seventh day from all His works”; 5 and again in this passage, “They shall not enter My rest.” 6 Therefore, since it remains for some to enter it, and those who formerly had good news preached to them failed to enter because of disobedience, 7 He again fixes a certain day, “Today,” saying through David after so long a time just as has been said before, “Today if you hear his voice, Do not harden your hearts.” 8 For if Joshua had given them rest, He would not have spoken of another day after that. 9 So there remains a Sabbath rest for the people of God. 10 For the one who has entered His rest has himself also rested from his works, as God did from His. 11 Therefore let us be diligent to enter that rest, so that no one will fall, through followingthe same example of disobedience.

The “rest” is not referring to Canaan or present salvation but future promise of God. For if they had already possessed the rest, then they would not need to be urged to enter the rest. Rather, it is an exhortation not to be complacent. We have not arrived yet; it is something that they (and we) should “strive earnestly to enter”.

If “entering the rest” is a reminder for us not to be complacent, then “today” is an urgent reminder for us to accept God’s promise, His invitation. His promise is still available; but, it won’t last forever. If we keep on delaying the opportunity to accept God’s promise, one day we will live to regret it.

  • The Penetration of God’s Word

In addition to being warned against unbelief, complacency, and procrastination, we are warned against self-deception. We often think sins committed in private are not sins or don’t matter. Here, we’re reminded that nothing can escape from the scrutiny of God.

Hebrews 4:12-13 (NASB)
12 For the word of God is living and active and sharper than any two-edged sword, and piercing as far as the division of soul and spirit, of both joints and marrow, and able to judge the thoughts and intentions of the heart. 13 And there is no creature hidden from His sight, but all things are open and laid bare to the eyes of Him with whom we have to do.

 Conclusion

How does belief in Christ determine receipt of God’s promised rest or the severest punishment of His wrath? Because:

  • Christ is superior to Moses
    • Both were faithful
    • Builder vs. Building
    • Servant vs. Son
  • Danger of Unbelief
    • Israel’s unbelief in the wilderness
    • Warning against unbelief
    • Warning against not entering God’s rest
      • Necessity of faith
      • The Penetration of God’s Word

Practical lessons to be learned:

  • Focus Our Thoughts on Jesus
    • Appreciate the esteemed position of Jesus in God’s household
    • If we associate with Him:
      • We are also accepted into the household of God
      • We enjoy the privileges Jesus gained for us through His sacrifice
  • Understand and Accept the Urgency to Repent
    • Do not to miss the opportunity to accept God’s invitation
      • God’s promise is still available, but it won’t last forever
      • If we keep on delaying the opportunity to accept God’s promise, one day we will live to regret it
    • Today Won’t Last Forever
  • Encourage Each Other Daily
    • This is why we come to
      • Worship together
      • Pray together
      • Study the Bible together
    • Even though we may belong to the minority group in today’s society, we should not and need not feel alone as we have the support and encouragement from each other
  • Take heart to Enter God’s Rest
    • Even when facing seemingly insurmountable obstacles
    • Let us hear the voices of Joshua and Caleb in our midst

Closing Prayer

Heavenly Father, may those who do not know You come to an everlasting knowledge of Your gift of salvation. May those who do know You grow in faith and obedience every day. Give us the courage, strength, and perseverence necessary to combat unbelief in our lives. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.

Use the audio player below if you are experiencing bandwidth problems with the video or would just prefer to listen to the audio only.

Use the video player below to watch a video of this sermon as it was delivered to Double Springs Baptist Church in Maben, Mississippi at their 11:00am Morning Service on Sunday, June 24, 2012. I pray it speaks to your heart.

Epilogue

“Jesus: The Danger of Unbelief” is part 3 of a 10-part study on the Book of Hebrews. You may view any of the following parts by clicking one of the links below.

Gospel Invitation

Is the Holy Spirit stirring within your heart? Is He convicting you of the need to make changes in your life and/or calling you to take action? The Bible says:

James 4:17 (NASB)
17 Therefore, to one who knows the right thing to do and does not do it, to him it is sin.

1 John 5:3 (NASB)
3 For this is the love of God, that we keep His commandments; and His commandments are not burdensome.

If the Holy Spirit is urging you to take action, it is important to respond with immediate obedience. Delayed obedience is disobedience. Please read the following sections that apply to your current situation and prayerfully consider the suggested course of actions.

I am lost. I need to accept Jesus Christ as my Lord and Savior.

John 3:16-18 (NASB)
16 "For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life. 17 "For God did not send the Son into the world to judge the world, but that the world might be saved through Him. 18 "He who believes in Him is not judged; he who does not believe has been judged already, because he has not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.

Action

  • To learn more about Jesus and His gift of redemption, read God's Plan of Salvation. If you are already familiar with the Plan of Savation, skip forward to section How to Become a Christian.
  • If you accept Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior, please let us know by participating in our poll located on the top left column of the page and filling out the Contact Form below.

I am saved; but, I have sin in my life that I need to confess and repent.

1 John 1:8-9 (NASB)
8 If we say that we have no sin, we are deceiving ourselves and the truth is not in us. 9 If we confess our sins, He is faithful and righteous to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.

Acts 3:19 (NASB)
19  "Therefore repent and return, so that your sins may be wiped away, in order that times of refreshing may come from the presence of the Lord;

Action

  • Fill out the Contact Form below to confidentially confess the sin in your life and your desire to repent. The information you send will not be shared with anyone else. Your privacy will be protected.

I am saved; but, I need to rededicate my life to the Lord.

Praise the Lord.

Action

  • In your own words, pray a prayer similar to the following:

Heavenly Father, I have fallen short of Your glory and have failed to live up to Your expecttions for me. Please forgive me. Lord, I rededicate my life to You. Not my will; but, Your will be done. Thank You for being a God of second chances. Use me Lord. Shape me and mold me into the person You would have me to be. I pray this in the name of Jesus Christ, my Lord and Savior. Amen.

  • If you just rededicated your life to the Lord, please let us know by participating in our poll located on the top left column of the page and filling out the Contact Form below.

I benefit from this ministry and want to become a member and/or make a donation.

Praise the Lord. We are glad you find Saved by Grace edifying.

Action

  • If you would like to become a member, please click "Register" in the "Log In" section on the top right column of the page. Members are allowed to comment on posts and other comments and may also provide Feedback.

Malachi 3:10 (NASB)
10  "Bring the whole tithe into the storehouse, so that there may be food in My house, and test Me now in this," says the LORD of hosts, "if I will not open for you the windows of heaven and pour out for you a blessing until it overflows.

  • If you benefit from this ministry and would like to support its efforts, projects, and missions, please consider making a tax deductible donation, of any amount. May God bless you for your generosity.




I need to discuss my situation confidentially.

James 5:16 (NASB)
16  Therefore, confess your sins to one another, and pray for one another so that you may be healed. The effective prayer of a righteous man can accomplish much.

Action

  • Fill out the Contact Form below to confidentially discuss the situation in your life that is troubling you. The information you send will not be shared with anyone else. Your privacy will be protected.

Contact Form








 

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2011 Christmas Series Part 2: A Savior Promised – Prophesies of a Messiah

God created a perfect world.

Man was placed in a garden paradise to enjoy fellowship with God.

Man fell from grace through disobedience to God, causing sin and death to enter the world.

God already planned a Savior to redeem mankind and restore fellowship with Him.

Scripture contains increasingly specific prophecies pointing to the Savior and God’s plan for redemption.

Introduction

God created a perfect world.

Man was placed in a garden paradise to enjoy fellowship with God.

Man fell from grace through disobedience to God, causing sin and death to enter the world.

God already planned a Savior to redeem mankind and restore fellowship with Him.

Scripture contains increasingly specific prophecies pointing to the Savior and God’s plan for redemption.

Opening Prayer

Our most gracious Heavenly Father, although Your creation was perfect, You knew man would ultimately fail you and so, in Your infinite wisdom, before the very foundation of the world, made plans for a Messiah, a Savior for mankind, in the personhood of Your only begotten Son, Jesus Christ. Your love, mercy, and grace are unrivaled throughout all that exists. Thank You God for loving us despite our shortcomings. Thank You God for providing a path to reconcilliation with You. In Jesus’ precious name we pray, Amen.

Main Points

1. The Promised Seed

Genesis 3:15 (NASB)
15 And I will put enmity Between you and the woman, And between your seed and her seed; He shall bruise you on the head, And you shall bruise him on the heel.”

  • Protevangelium – The first hint of the Gospel (very generalized)
  • Although containing a promise for mankind, it is addressed to the serpent
    • Part of a sentence of judgment passed upon an enemy of God and man
    • It is about God’s rule as much as it is man’s need
  • It is also a prophecy of hostility and struggle
    • Enmity comes from a Hebrew word meaning “to hate”
    • Warns of opposition between Satan and mankind as well as the One who will bring God’s plan of salvation to pass
  • Enmity is with Satan and his seed, not against serpents in general
    • Scriptural use of enmity only occurs between persons and/or morally responsible agents
    • New Testament revelation reveals the figure of Satan behind the serpent

Revelation 12:9 (NASB)
9 And the great dragon was thrown down, the serpent of old who is called the devil and Satan, who deceives the whole world; he was thrown down to the earth, and his angels were thrown down with him.

  • The struggle is between Satan and the woman, his seed and her seed, and more specifically, between Satan and an individual of her seed
    • Satan’s defeat and that of his seed (the unbelieving world) would come from the seed of the woman
    • First anticipation of the virgin birth (her seed, NOT man’s, NOT theirs)
  • Two things are stated about the seeds and their enmity
    • Her seed will bruise/crush the serpent’s (Satan’s) head
      • Mortal wound
      • Her seed will be victorious
      • A deliverance is anticipated
    • The serpent (Satan) will bruise her seed on the heel
      • Her seed will suffer
      • It will not be a mortal wound
  • Eve gives birth to Cain and Abel

Genesis 4:1-2 (NASB)
1 Now the man had relations with his wife Eve, and she conceived and gave birth to Cain, and she said, “I have gotten a manchild with the help of the Lord.” 2 Again, she gave birth to his brother Abel. And Abel was a keeper of flocks, but Cain was a tiller of the ground.

    • Cain (“gotten” or “acquired”)
    • Did Eve think Cain was the promised seed?
    • God accepted Abel’s sacrifice over Cain’s, could he be the promised seed?
    • Cain soon murdered Abel, so it was obviously neither

2. The Godly Seed: The Line of Seth

Genesis 4:25-26 (NASB)
25 Adam had relations with his wife again; and she gave birth to a son, and named him Seth, for, she said, “God has appointed me another offspring in place of Abel, for Cain killed him.” 26 To Seth, to him also a son was born; and he called his name Enosh. Then menbegan to call upon the name of the Lord.

  • Seth is from a Hebrew word meaning “to set, place, or appoint”
  • Seth and his line (as opposed to Cain) begin to call upon the name of the Lord
  • Through the line of Seth, we eventually reach Noah
  • Except for Noah, his wife, and his three sons and their wives, the world had become so corrupt God decided to destroy it with a flood
  • After the flood, Noah’s sons, Shem, Ham, and Japheth became the fathers of the entire human race
  • Through the line of Shem, we eventually reach Abram

3. The Call of Abram and the Abrahamic Covenant

Genesis 12:1-3 (NASB)
1 Now the Lord said to Abram, “Go forth from your country, And from your relatives And from your father’s house, To the land which I will show you; 2 And I will make you a great nation, And I will bless you, And make your name great; And so you shall be a blessing; 3 And I will bless those who bless you, And the one who curses you I will curse. And in you all the families of the earth will be blessed.”

  • A specific portion of land is now in view (Canaan, later to be called Palestine)
    • This land will become the center of the world as God views it
    • The woman’s seed will come out of this land
  • A specific nation is now in view
    • A nation will arise from the descendants of Abram
    • God changes Abram’s name to Abraham meaning “father of a multitude”
  • Universal blessings are promised for all nations of the earth
    • Abraham’s seed will become a channel of blessing to all the world
    • The woman’s seed will come from Abraham’s descendants
  • The covenant is an everlasting, unconditional covenant

Genesis 17:3-8 (NASB)
3 Abram fell on his face, and God talked with him, saying, 4 “As for Me, behold, My covenant is with you, And you will be the father of a multitude of nations. 5 “No longer shall your name be called Abram, But your name shall be Abraham; For I have made you the father of a multitude of nations. 6 “I will make you exceedingly fruitful, and I will make nations of you, and kings will come forth from you. 7 “I will establish My covenant between Me and you and your descendants after you throughout their generations for an everlasting covenant, to be God to you and to your descendants after you. 8 “I will give to you and to your descendants after you, the land of your sojournings, all the land of Canaan, for an everlasting possession; and I will be their God.”

4. The Line of Isaac

Genesis 17:17-21 (NASB)
17 Then Abraham fell on his face and laughed, and said in his heart, “Will a child be born to a man one hundred years old? And will Sarah, who is ninety years old, bear a child?18 And Abraham said to God, “Oh that Ishmael might live before You!” 19 But God said, “No, but Sarah your wife will bear you a son, and you shall call his name Isaac; and I will establish My covenant with him for an everlasting covenant for his descendants after him. 20 “As for Ishmael, I have heard you; behold, I will bless him, and will make him fruitful and will multiply him exceedingly. He shall become the father of twelve princes, and I will make him a great nation. 21 “But My covenant I will establish with Isaac, whom Sarah will bear to you at this season next year.”

Genesis 21:12-13 (NASB)
12 But God said to Abraham, “Do not be distressed because of the lad and your maid; whatever Sarah tells you, listen to her, for through Isaac your descendants shall be named. 13 “And of the son of the maid I will make a nation also, because he is your descendant.”

  • God will make nations from both Ishmael and Isaac
  • However, Isaac will be the line through which the covenant is established
    • Isaac has two sons, Esau and Jacob
    • The Deliverer will come from one of these lines

 5. The Line of Jacob

Genesis 25:21-26 (NASB)
21 Isaac prayed to the Lord on behalf of his wife, because she was barren; and the Lord answered him and Rebekah his wife conceived. 22 But the children struggled together within her; and she said, “If it is so, why then am I this way?” So she went to inquire of the Lord. 23 The Lord said to her, “Two nations are in your womb; And two peoples will be separated from your body; And one people shall be stronger than the other; And the older shall serve the younger.” 24 When her days to be delivered were fulfilled, behold, there were twins in her womb. 25 Now the first came forth red, all over like a hairy garment; and they named him Esau. 26 Afterward his brother came forth with his hand holding on to Esau’s heel, so his name was called Jacob; and Isaac was sixty years old when she gave birth to them.

  • God reiterates the Abrahamic covenant through Jacob

Genesis 28:10-15 (NASB)
10 Then Jacob departed from Beersheba and went toward Haran. 11 He came to a certain place and spent the night there, because the sun had set; and he took one of the stones of the place and put it under his head, and lay down in that place. 12 He had a dream, and behold, a ladder was set on the earth with its top reaching to heaven; and behold, the angels of God were ascending and descending on it. 13 And behold, the Lord stood above it and said, “I am the Lord, the God of your father Abraham and the God of Isaac; the land on which you lie, I will give it to you and to your descendants. 14 “Your descendants will also be like the dust of the earth, and you will spread out to the west and to the east and to the north and to the south; and in you and in your descendants shall all the families of the earth be blessed. 15 “Behold, I am with you and will keep you wherever you go, and will bring you back to this land; for I will not leave you until I have done what I have promised you.”

  • God changes Jacob’s name to Israel, which is where the nation gets its name
  • Jacob has twelve (12) sons which become the twelve (12) tribes of Israel: Reuben, Simeon, Levi, Judah, Issachar, Zebulon, Dan, Naphtali, Gad, Asher, Joseph, and Benjamin

6. The Tribe of Judah

Genesis 49:10 (NASB)
10 “The scepter shall not depart from Judah, Nor the ruler’s staff from between his feet, Until Shiloh comes, And to him shall bethe obedience of the peoples.

  • On his deathbed, Jacob pronounced his blessings on his sons, indicating the royal line would be in the tribe of Judah
  • Judah means “praise”
    • Through this tribe God would do things to cause men to lift up their voices in praise
  • The “scepter” and the “ruler’s staff” refer to Judah’s right to rule and to it being the royal line
  • “Shiloh” is a messianic title referring to the woman’s seed or the coming Deliverer
  • Jacob’s blessing prophesied that
    • Judah will become the royal line
    • The right to rule will always remain with Judah until the Deliverer comes

 7. The Family of Jesse

1 Samuel 16:1 (NASB)
1 Now the Lord said to Samuel, “How long will you grieve over Saul, since I have rejected him from being king over Israel? Fill your horn with oil and go; I will send you to Jesse the Bethlehemite, for I have selected a king for Myself among his sons.”

Isaiah 11:1,10 (NASB)
1 Then a shoot will spring from the stem of Jesse, And a branch from his roots will bear fruit. … 10 Then in that day The nations will resort to the root of Jesse, Who will stand as a signal for the peoples; And His resting place will be glorious.

  • God informs Samuel that He has selected a king from among the sons of Jesse
  • Isaiah also prophesies that one of Jesse’s sons will bear much fruit, becoming a signal for the people
    • Prophecies are moving away from the general toward the more specific
    • Could one of Jesse’s sons be the promised deliverer/redeemer?

 8. The Line of David

  • The people of Israel demand a king

1 Samuel 8:4-10,19-22 (NASB)
4 Then all the elders of Israel gathered together and came to Samuel at Ramah; 5 and they said to him, “Behold, you have grown old, and your sons do not walk in your ways. Now appoint a king for us to judge us like all the nations.” 6 But the thing was displeasing in the sight of Samuel when they said, “Give us a king to judge us.” And Samuel prayed to the Lord. 7 The Lord said to Samuel, “Listen to the voice of the people in regard to all that they say to you, for they have not rejected you, but they have rejected Me from being king over them. 8 “Like all the deeds which they have done since the day that I brought them up from Egypt even to this day—in that they have forsaken Me and served other gods—so they are doing to you also. 9 “Now then, listen to their voice; however, you shall solemnly warn them and tell them of the procedure of the king who will reign over them.” 10 So Samuel spoke all the words of the Lord to the people who had asked of him a king. … 19 Nevertheless, the people refused to listen to the voice of Samuel, and they said, “No, but there shall be a king over us, 20 that we also may be like all the nations, that our king may judge us and go out before us and fight our battles.” 21 Now after Samuel had heard all the words of the people, he repeated them in the Lord’s hearing. 22 The Lord said to Samuel, “Listen to their voice and appoint them a king.” So Samuel said to the men of Israel, “Go every man to his city.”

  • God had already planned to give them a king
    • One after His own heart
    • One who would rule under God’s authority with God ruling over his heart
  • Due to Israel’s impatience, God gave them a king
    • Saul, from the tribe of Benjamin, NOT Judah as had been prophesied by Jacob (Genesis 49)
    • God’s sovereignty and providence despite Israel’s impatience
      • Judah sinned and had illegitimate sons, Perez (firstborn) and Zera (Genesis 38:6-30)
      • Being the firstborn, Perez was the seed or royal line (Matthew 1:3; Luke 3:33)
      • However, illegitimate sons are prohibited from entering the congregation of the Lord until the tenth generation (Deuteronomy 23:2)
      • Perez, and any of his descendants, until the tenth generation, were therefore prohibited from serving as either a king or a priest
      • Jesse, David’s father, was a ninth generation descendent of Perez
      • David, was a tenth generation descendent, and, as such, was eligible to serve as king
    • God gave Israel Saul until David could come of age

1 Samuel 16:12-13 (NASB)
12 So he sent and brought him in. Now he was ruddy, with beautiful eyes and a handsome appearance. And the Lord said, “Arise, anoint him; for this is he.” 13 Then Samuel took the horn of oil and anointed him in the midst of his brothers; and the Spirit of the Lord came mightily upon David from that day forward. And Samuel arose and went to Ramah.

  • King David was well liked and had won the hearts and minds of the people
  • Many probably began looking to him as the fulfillment of the prophesy
  • Through his sins (e.g., Bathsheba), they discover that David can not the chosen one, they must look to his descendants

Isaiah 9:6-7 (NASB)
6 For a child will be born to us, a son will be given to us; And the government will rest on His shoulders; And His name will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Eternal Father, Prince of Peace. 7 There will be no end to the increase of Hisgovernment or of peace, On the throne of David and over his kingdom, To establish it and to uphold it with justice and righteousness From then on and forevermore. The zeal of the Lord of hosts will accomplish this.

  • God affirms this through the Davidic Covenant

2 Samuel 7:12-17 (NASB)
12 “When your days are complete and you lie down with your fathers, I will raise up your descendant after you, who will come forth from you, and I will establish his kingdom. 13 “He shall build a house for My name, and I will establish the throne of his kingdom forever. 14 “I will be a father to him and he will be a son to Me; when he commits iniquity, I will correct him with the rod of men and the strokes of the sons of men, 15 but My lovingkindness shall not depart from him, as I took it away from Saul, whom I removed from before you. 16 “Your house and your kingdom shall endure before Me forever; your throne shall be established forever.””‘ 17 In accordance with all these words and all this vision, so Nathan spoke to David.

  • The royal line passes from David to his son, Solomon

1 Chronicles 28:4-5 (NASB)
4 “Yet, the Lord, the God of Israel, chose me from all the house of my father to be king over Israel forever. For He has chosen Judah to be a leader; and in the house of Judah, my father’s house, and among the sons of my father He took pleasure in me to make me king over all Israel. 5 “Of all my sons (for the Lord has given me many sons), He has chosen my son Solomon to sit on the throne of the kingdom of the Lord over Israel.

 9. The Messiah to be Preceded by a Forerunner

Isaiah 40:3 (NASB)
3 A voice is calling, “Clear the way for the Lord in the wilderness; Make smooth in the desert a highway for our God.

Malachi 3:1 (NASB)
1 “Behold, I am going to send My messenger, and he will clear the way before Me. And the Lord, whom you seek, will suddenly come to His temple; and the messenger of the covenant, in whom you delight, behold, He is coming,” says the Lord of hosts.

  • Prophecy predicted the Messiah would be preceded by a forerunner who would prepare the hearts of the people for the Lord

10. The Messiah to be Born of a Virgin

Isaiah 7:13-14 (NASB)
13 Then he said, “Listen now, O house of David! Is it too slight a thing for you to try the patience of men, that you will try the patience of my God as well? 14 “Therefore the Lord Himself will give you a sign: Behold, a virgin will be with child and bear a son, and she will call His name Immanuel.

  •  Virgin is the translation of the Hebrew word, hm;l][“ (`almâ), meaning “a mature, young, unmarried, and chaste woman” representing a young woman, one of whose characteristics is virginity
    • Long before any Christological controversies, the Septuagint used the Greek word, parqe/noj (parthenos), meaning “virgin”, in two of the seven occurrences of the Hebrew word, hm;l][“ (`almâ), including Isaiah 7:14, which is what the angel quoted to Joseph as a prediction of the virgin birth (Matthew 1:23)
    • There is no instance where one can prove that hm;l][“ (`almâ) designates a young woman who is not also a virgin
    • hm;l][“ (`almâ) is the only Hebrew word that unequivocally signifies an unmarried woman
    • It is sometimes argued that the Hebrew language has a more precise word for “virgin”: hl;WtK] (bethulah); however, this word may also indicate a betrothed virgin or one who is already married (Joel 1:8)
      • In such a case, the birth of the child might be viewed as the result of the normal husband/wife relationship
      • Instead, Isaiah is speaking of a young, unmarried virgin who conceives miraculously

 11. The Promise Preserved, Despite Royal Line Being Cut Off/Cursed

Jeremiah 22:28-30 (NASB)
28 “Is this man Coniah a despised, shattered jar? Or is he an undesirable vessel? Why have he and his descendants been hurled out And cast into a land that they had not known? 29 “O land, land, land, Hear the word of the Lord! 30 “Thus says the Lord, ‘Write this man down childless, A man who will not prosper in his days; For no man of his descendants will prosper Sitting on the throne of David Or ruling again in Judah.’ “

  • The Royal Line is cut off and cursed
    • No physical seed of Coniah (Jeconiah) could ever occupy the throne of David
    • Included in the royal line of David, through Solomon, was Jeconiah
    • Consequently, the royal line of David, through Solomon, was cut off
  • The Promise preserved
    • Through the virgin birth
      • Jesus was the legal son of Joseph by adoption
      • Jesus was the physical son of David though Mary
    • Joseph was in the royal line of David through Solomon, giving Jesus legal title to the throne by adoption (Matthew 1:1-17)
    • Mary was a descendant of Nathan, another son of David, which made Jesus a literal son of David (Luke 3:23-38)

12. The Time of the Messiah’s Birth

Daniel 9:24-27 (NASB)
24 “Seventy weeks have been decreed for your people and your holy city, to finish the transgression, to make an end of sin, to make atonement for iniquity, to bring in everlasting righteousness, to seal up vision and prophecy and to anoint the most holy place. 25 “So you are to know and discern that from the issuing of a decree to restore and rebuild Jerusalem until Messiah the Prince there will be seven weeks and sixty-two weeks; it will be built again, with plaza and moat, even in times of distress. 26 “Then after the sixty-two weeks the Messiah will be cut off and have nothing, and the people of the prince who is to come will destroy the city and the sanctuary. And its end will come with a flood; even to the end there will be war; desolations are determined. 27 “And he will make a firm covenant with the many for one week, but in the middle of the week he will put a stop to sacrifice and grain offering; and on the wing of abominations will comeone who makes desolate, even until a complete destruction, one that is decreed, is poured out on the one who makes desolate.”

  • Indicates when the Messiah will appear on the scene: 69 weeks of years, or 483 years (Daniel 9:25), commencing upon the decree to restore and rebuild Jerusalem in 445 BC (Nehemiah 2:1-8)
  • Indicates the Messiah will be rejected by His people
  • Indicates the Messiah will be cut off temporarily (a reference to the cross)
  • The words “…until Messiah the Prince…” refer to a time when the Messiah would be manifested as the Prince of Israel (although debated, probably refers to the triumphal entry of Christ into Jerusalem on Palm Sunday when He presented Himself and was recognized by the people as Messiah Prince – ca. 30-33 AD, placing His birth around 0-4 AD)

13. The Place of the Messiah’s Birth

Micah 5:2 (NASB)
2 “But as for you, Bethlehem Ephrathah, Toolittle to be among the clans of Judah, From you One will go forth for Me to be ruler in Israel. His goings forth are from long ago, From the days of eternity.”

  • The Messiah would be born in Bethlehem

14. The Messiah’s Birth to be Celestially Announced

Numbers 24:17 (NASB)
17 “I see him, but not now; I behold him, but not near; A star shall come forth from Jacob, A scepter shall rise from Israel, And shall crush through the forehead of Moab, And tear down all the sons of Sheth.

  • God would provide a celestial sign, announcing the birth of Christ

Conclusion

  • The Bible is not a simple collection of semi-related books
    • The Bible reveals the character and nature of God
    • The Bible provides a theological history revealing:
      • God’s creation of a paradise within which He desired to have a relationship with mankind, whom He created in His image
      • Mankind’s fall from grace through sin, plunging him and creation into death and despair
      • God’s plan for redemption and restoration through a deliverer, redeemer, savior
  • From Genesis through Revelation, the Bible provides progressive revelation of God’s plan for redemption and restoration
    • First revelation given immediately upon the fall of man
    • Initial revelations are vague and non-specific, but, with each successive revelation they become clearer and more specific
  • Initial fulfillment came in the form of the birth of Jesus Christ
  • Final and complete fulfillment will occur when Jesus returns
  • Will you be ready when He comes?

Closing Prayer

Heavenly Father, Sovereign of Creation, thank You for knowing in advance that mankind would need redemption through the Savior You provided. Thank You for the progressive revelations of the Messiah so that we could have hope: hope of eternal reconcilliation with You. Lord I pray that those who do not possess that hope would draw nigh unto You and receive the hope and peace that can only come from You. In Jesus Christ’s name we pray, Amen.

Gospel Invitation

Is the Holy Spirit stirring within your heart? Is He convicting you of the need to make changes in your life and/or calling you to take action? The Bible says:

James 4:17 (NASB)
17 Therefore, to one who knows the right thing to do and does not do it, to him it is sin.

1 John 5:3 (NASB)
3 For this is the love of God, that we keep His commandments; and His commandments are not burdensome.

If the Holy Spirit is urging you to take action, it is important to respond with immediate obedience. Delayed obedience is disobedience. Please read the following sections that apply to your current situation and prayerfully consider the suggested course of actions.

I am lost. I need to accept Jesus Christ as my Lord and Savior.

John 3:16-18 (NASB)
16 "For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life. 17 "For God did not send the Son into the world to judge the world, but that the world might be saved through Him. 18 "He who believes in Him is not judged; he who does not believe has been judged already, because he has not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.

Action

  • To learn more about Jesus and His gift of redemption, read God's Plan of Salvation. If you are already familiar with the Plan of Savation, skip forward to section How to Become a Christian.
  • If you accept Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior, please let us know by participating in our poll located on the top left column of the page and filling out the Contact Form below.

I am saved; but, I have sin in my life that I need to confess and repent.

1 John 1:8-9 (NASB)
8 If we say that we have no sin, we are deceiving ourselves and the truth is not in us. 9 If we confess our sins, He is faithful and righteous to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.

Acts 3:19 (NASB)
19  "Therefore repent and return, so that your sins may be wiped away, in order that times of refreshing may come from the presence of the Lord;

Action

  • Fill out the Contact Form below to confidentially confess the sin in your life and your desire to repent. The information you send will not be shared with anyone else. Your privacy will be protected.

I am saved; but, I need to rededicate my life to the Lord.

Praise the Lord.

Action

  • In your own words, pray a prayer similar to the following:

Heavenly Father, I have fallen short of Your glory and have failed to live up to Your expecttions for me. Please forgive me. Lord, I rededicate my life to You. Not my will; but, Your will be done. Thank You for being a God of second chances. Use me Lord. Shape me and mold me into the person You would have me to be. I pray this in the name of Jesus Christ, my Lord and Savior. Amen.

  • If you just rededicated your life to the Lord, please let us know by participating in our poll located on the top left column of the page and filling out the Contact Form below.

I benefit from this ministry and want to become a member and/or make a donation.

Praise the Lord. We are glad you find Saved by Grace edifying.

Action

  • If you would like to become a member, please click "Register" in the "Log In" section on the top right column of the page. Members are allowed to comment on posts and other comments and may also provide Feedback.

Malachi 3:10 (NASB)
10  "Bring the whole tithe into the storehouse, so that there may be food in My house, and test Me now in this," says the LORD of hosts, "if I will not open for you the windows of heaven and pour out for you a blessing until it overflows.

  • If you benefit from this ministry and would like to support its efforts, projects, and missions, please consider making a tax deductible donation, of any amount. May God bless you for your generosity.




I need to discuss my situation confidentially.

James 5:16 (NASB)
16  Therefore, confess your sins to one another, and pray for one another so that you may be healed. The effective prayer of a righteous man can accomplish much.

Action

  • Fill out the Contact Form below to confidentially discuss the situation in your life that is troubling you. The information you send will not be shared with anyone else. Your privacy will be protected.

Contact Form








 

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