This is Chapter three of a New Study I developed at Faith Baptist Church on Wednesday Nights. I’d love to hear what you think.
A Picture of Christ in the Old Testament
Session Three: In The History Books part two
Joshua, Judges, The Kings
So, this is not and could not be exhaustive, but let’s see a few instances and make broad strokes to see Christ in the Old Testament
What is a Theophany? A Manifestation of God that can be experienced by the humans senses
What is a Christophany? A Theophany that is personified in the 2nd Person of the Trinity. Scripture seems to say, though that ALL Theophanies are Christophanies as Jesus is the revelation of God. And scripture says that no man HAS or CAN ever see God … So ..
What is a Type of Christ in the Old Testament? A method of biblical interpretation where an element found in the Old Testament prefigures or displays Christ in character, action, pointing to his coming, character, and completion of the picture shown. They can be Historical, Legal, or Prophetic.
So we dealt with the Law last time
But in the Exodus … I see a type in The Red Sea
The Red Sea – was opened and man crossed. Both God’s People and those pursuing
But God’s people crossed on dry ground and were saved
Those pursuing, were swallowed up and died
The ground was dry for God’s people but the depths said to bog down the wheels of the Pharaoh’s army.
So too Jesus
1 Corinthians 1:23–25 (NIV84)
23 but we preach Christ crucified: a stumbling block to Jews and foolishness to Gentiles, 24 but to those whom God has called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the power of God and the wisdom of God. 25 For the foolishness of God is wiser than man’s wisdom, and the weakness of God is stronger than man’s strength.
Matthew 21:44 (NIV84)
44 He who falls on this stone will be broken to pieces, but he on whom it falls will be crushed.”
So they were Led by Christ, The Angel of the Lord who inhabited the pillar of cloud and the pillar of Fire … they were led even when they wandered in the wilderness because they were unwilling to believe …
So … a new generation rises, all over the age of 20 besides Caleb and Joshua die off, and they are ready to enter The Promised Land.
They send out Spies to see Jericho, the first city they have been told to take.
The spies meet a woman of questionable occupation a woman named Rahab. I would venture that she would have known most everyone. And she would have been a woman of discretion. She also is said to have had her house IN the Wall, so it was easy to get in and out.
Whenever God brings someone into your realm of influence, you can be sure that he has been working already.
Notice her knowledge and faith Joshua 2:9 “I know that the Lord has given this land to you and that a great fear of you has fallen on us, so that all who live in this country are melting in fear because of you. 10 we have heard how the Lord dried up the water of the Red Sea for you when you came out of Egypt, and what you did to Sihon and Og … 11 when we heard of it, our hearts melted and everyone’s courage failed because of you, for the Lord your God is God in heaven above and on the earth below
Did she already have faith? Yes … She just didn’t know what to do and was waiting to be shown.
V12 … swear to me … that you will show kindness to my family … give me a sure sign …
So what was the sign?
Joshua 2:17–21 (NIV84)
17 The men said to her, “This oath you made us swear will not be binding on us 18 unless, when we enter the land, you have tied this scarlet cord in the window through which you let us down, and unless you have brought your father and mother, your brothers and all your family into your house. 19 If anyone goes outside your house into the street, his blood will be on his own head; we will not be responsible. As for anyone who is in the house with you, his blood will be on our head if a hand is laid on him. 20 But if you tell what we are doing, we will be released from the oath you made us swear.” 21 “Agreed,” she replied. “Let it be as you say.” So she sent them away and they departed. And she tied the scarlet cord in the window.
So … they left … we will come back to her in just a minute …
So Chapter 3 they get ready to go across the Jordan into The Promised Land
V5 consecrate yourselves, for tomorrow the Lord will do amazing things among you
V8 Tell the priests … ‘when you reach the edge of the Jordan’s waters, go and stand in the river.’”
V13 as soon as the priests … set foot in the Jordan, it’s waters … will be cut off and stand up
V15 Jordan was at flood stage … could have been a mile across …
… Yet as soon the priests … reached the Jordan and their feet touched the water’s edge 16 the water from upstream stopped flowing, it piled up in a heap
So … it is with our faith … Faith in action is the key. I may KNOW that he says he will forgive … I may know that he says he will save … but it is not until I STEP IN … confess him as Lord, believe in my heart and THEN … the flow of God’s wrath is stacked up …
They stacked up 12 stones in the middle where they crossed to remember what God had done.
As you read through there notice how many times it says “The Lord said to Joshua” “The Lord Said” … etc
So … We are Looking for Christ in the Old Testament … and we see him …
Read with me …
Joshua 5:13–15 (NIV84)
13 Now when Joshua was near Jericho, he looked up and saw a man standing in front of him with a drawn sword in his hand. Joshua went up to him and asked, “Are you for us or for our enemies?” 14 “Neither,” he replied, “but as commander of the army of the Lord I have now come.” Then Joshua fell facedown to the ground in reverence, and asked him, “What message does my Lord have for his servant?” 15 The commander of the Lord’s army replied, “Take off your sandals, for the place where you are standing is holy.” And Joshua did so.
Joshua saw a MAN standing in Front of him … Drawn Sword …
“Are you for us or against us?”
Answer: None of the Above … What was Joshua doing? Was he Marching with his people when this manifestation took place or was he alone? I have always just pictured him with his people. But perhaps more likely is that He had gone to scout out, to look over the city. And while he was looking this way, then he looks that way and now there is a man there who wasn’t there before.
“Are you For us?”
Wrong Question. Abraham Lincoln was asked if God was for the Union or for The Confederacy. Lincoln is reported as saying “I’m not near as concerned whether or not God is with us as whether we are WITH GOD.”
Joshua fell face down to the ground and worshiped him … what message does my Lord have?
Remember that a simple angel/messenger wouldn’t receive worship. This Angel received Worship because this is God … this is The Angel of the Lord … the 2nd person of the Trinity
The Commander of the Lord’s army replied ‘take off your sandals for the place where you are standing is holy.’
The Word Holy means “apartness, set apart for a sacred purpose” … God says “I’m about to do something altogether set apart … you have never seen this before” That’s what Joshua told the people the Lord will do amazing things
What else transpired we don’t know, don’t need to know … God revealed that HE was in charge, that HE was the commander … that he was leading if Joshua would follow, he had everything he needed …
So with God’s instructions they go to Jericho and march in silence around the city one time each day for six days. On the seventh day they march around seven times with the priests blowing their horns. On the seventh time they blow a long blast, and all the people SHOUT, and the wall of the city will collapse.
6:20 So on the seventh day on the seventh time … the people shouted a war cry and the wall collapsed and they took the city.
Can you see with your mind the demolition? Like a building coming down from an implosion. Dust is everywhere … but as the dust clears … There stands ONE SECTION of the Wall. That one piece of wall stood pointing to Rahab’s hope, Israel’s hope, GOD ALONE … The Word of God
She didn’t have much too stand on, she didn’t have a Bible, a Manger, a Cross. But she had the story of the crossing of the Red Sea and the defeat of the Amalakites. She had the word of God’s spies and it was enough. She obeyed their word. She hung a SCARLET CORD … Oh aren’t you glad it wasn’t just any color cord. It was a scarlet cord. Since Genesis 3 it is the Scarlet Cord. It is pointing us to the Blood of Jesus.
Oh some of us need to take the message of the Scarlet Cord into some dark houses … Oh don’t you know … Joshua had told them that Rahab was going to be the only one saved.
Not only that but her whole family … but Only those who were IN THE HOUSE. It isn’t enough to HEAR ABOUT the Scarlet Cord, we have to believe IN the Cord and come into the house.
And so Rahab came out with God’s people and numbered herself among God’s people.
And Matthew 1:5-6 tells us that she married Salmon, a Jew, and they had a son named Boaz, who married Ruth, a Moabite converted to Judaism, and their son was Obed. Obed had a son named Jesse, and Jesse had a son named … DAVID who became KING …
Oh the power of the Scarlet Cord. Oh the Power of Faith in Action
Faith in a Scarlet Cord
The Angel of the Lord at Bokim
Judges 2:1–3 (NIV84)
1 The angel of the Lord went up from Gilgal to Bokim and said, “I brought you up out of Egypt and led you into the land that I swore to give to your forefathers. I said, ‘I will never break my covenant with you, 2 and you shall not make a covenant with the people of this land, but you shall break down their altars.’ Yet you have disobeyed me. Why have you done this? 3 Now therefore I tell you that I will not drive them out before you; they will be thorns in your sides and their gods will be a snare to you.”
Notice the instruction not to intermarry, not to make treaties was about THIS LAND at THIS TIME … and it was about creating partnerships with people who didn’t worship God. That was point. God wanted in Israel, a unique people protected from false gods.
Judges 2:4–5 (NIV84)
4 When the angel of the Lord had spoken these things to all the Israelites, the people wept aloud, 5 and they called that place Bokim. There they offered sacrifices to the Lord.
The problem here and going forward is that they failed to follow God’s word completely. And so v7 says they served the Lord throughout the lifetime of Joshua and of the elders
But then v10 says
Judges 2:10 (NIV84)
10 After that whole generation had been gathered to their fathers, another generation grew up, who knew neither the Lord nor what he had done for Israel.
We must pass along to the next generation The Reality, Presence, Word, of the Lord if we want them to follow it.
The Angel of the Lord to Gideon
Before God showed up in Power for Deliverance, there had to be a Preacher to proclaim their sin and call to repentance.
These words are the same as to Joshua in Chapter 2.
A prophet, who, we don’t know.
Judges 6:8–10 (NIV84)
8 he sent them a prophet, who said, “This is what the Lord, the God of Israel, says: I brought you up out of Egypt, out of the land of slavery. 9 I snatched you from the power of Egypt and from the hand of all your oppressors. I drove them from before you and gave you their land. 10 I said to you, ‘I am the Lord your God; do not worship the gods of the Amorites, in whose land you live.’ But you have not listened to me.”
So … then The Angel of the Lord appears again …
Gideon is threshing Wheat in a winepress. Why in a winepress? For fear … Marauders were coming in and stealing/ruining their crops every time they harvested. They were killing their livestock. It was like they were stripped by Locusts …
So v7 the Israelites cried to the Lord for help
And God, Jesus, came and sat down beside Gideon who was just trying to beat out some wheat for his family
Judges 6:11–14 (NIV84)
11 The angel of the Lord came and sat down under the oak in Ophrah that belonged to Joash the Abiezrite, where his son Gideon was threshing wheat in a winepress to keep it from the Midianites. 12 When the angel of the Lord appeared to Gideon, he said, “The Lord is with you, mighty warrior.” 13 “But sir,” Gideon replied, “if the Lord is with us, why has all this happened to us? Where are all his wonders that our fathers told us about when they said, ‘Did not the Lord bring us up out of Egypt?’ But now the Lord has abandoned us and put us into the hand of Midian.” 14 The Lord turned to him and said, “Go in the strength you have and save Israel out of Midian’s hand. Am I not sending you?”
- The Lord is With You – You are Not alone
- Mighty Warrior – You are more than you think you are
V13 but sir – IF … then why has this all happened? Where are all his wonders … the Lord has abandoned us …
He calls him SIR … so he didn’t realize yet this was The LORD … so he calls him adoni, sir …Go … in the strength you have … and save … I am sending you
If I am saying that you can … then you can …
V15 But Lord … how can I save Israel? … my clan is the weakest … I am the least in my family
Sound familiar? God doesn’t often call the confident and the composed, the powerful and poised … I can just see him looking around in the winepress and saying “do you see what I’m doing”?
Answer … v16 – I will be with you … and you will strike down …
V17 IF now I have found favor … give me a sign … don’t go away until I come back
The Lord said “I will wait …”
Oh the wonderful patience of the Lord with our unbelief … Difference is He knew just like with Moses … he WANTED to believe … Rahab WANTED to believe … God will give a sign to the one who wants to believe …
He placed an offering before the Lord … notice he brought bread WITHOUT Yeast … Yeast in offerings would have been considered sin … so he came prepared to faithfully worship … he brought unleavened bread.
V21 – interesting that the Lord had a staff? The Lord is my Shepherd
He touched the offering with his staff and fire came from the rock and consumed the meat and bread. And then he disappeared …
And THEN He realized who this was …
V22 then Gideon realized that it was the Angel of the Lord and exclaimed … now remember earlier he had called him Adoni (Lord) but it was in a casual sense. Now he says “Ah Sovereign Lord” which is Adoni Yahovih (yeh-ho-vee) This was a variation on Yehovah … that they would say so as not to take the actual pronunciation in vain.
This is GOD … I have seen him FACE TO FACE
But God came back …
V23 the Lord Said to him, ‘peace be to you. Do not fear; you shall not die.’
Doesn’t that sound just like Jesus “Peace I leave with you, my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.” (John 14:27)
Do you hear the voice of Jesus every time The Angel of the Lord Speaks?
V24 So Gideon built an altar to the Lord there and called it The Lord is Peace.’’
Oh but Gideon had a family worship problem … His father had an altar to Baal and an Asherah pole
We can’t build an altar to God on the old altars we have had to Idols …
TEAR IT DOWN … CUT DOWN the Pole …
Build a PROPER Altar on top of it …
Matthew Henry suggests that he probably had to put an inscription on this one so everyone would know who this altar was for and there would be no mistake.
When you tear down the old objects of worship in your life, make sure that the new one to God is clear to all clear to you as well.
This word for proper or “in due order” – ma’arakah = battleline, army, fight – Oh we wrestle not against flesh and blood but rulers, authorities, powers of this dark world and against spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms … so put on the full armor of God … so that you may be able to stand your ground
V27 Gideon obeyed him … he did it at night rather than in the daytime
Ok so he’s not there yet … better obedience I guess at night than no obedience at all … So practice it at night if you aren’t ready but do it …
Men in town want to kill him and I love his father, Joash, his response
V31 If Baal really is a god, he can defend himself when someone breaks down his altar.
Tells me perhaps he wasn’t really sold on being a worshiper of Baal but he did what everyone did.
So then Gideon was given the nickname of “Baal-fighter” “Jerub-Baal”
V34 we are introduced to the 3rd Person of the Trinity … Then The Spirit of the Lord came upon Gideon, and he blew a trumpet,
Notice, the Holy Spirit was GIVEN for instances of work, for empowerment, but wasn’t Forever in the lives of God’s people before Pentecost. David is the only one who it says “the spirit of the Lord never left him.”
Notice also that I don’t think Gideon made a willful decision to sound the Alarm, but God’s Spirit did it through him. I think he blew it and went … wait what? What did I do.
But the men went out to meet him
And well … Gideon is ever in need of encouragement
V36 if you will save Israel by MY hand, as you have promised …
V37 – place a wool fleece … dew only on the fleece … ground is dry, then I will know you will save Israel by my hand, as you said
He keeps saying he knows God said it … but he needs to be sure
So it HAPPENED … a bowlful of dew
V39 – do not be angry with me … just one more … fleece dry and the ground covered with dew. 40 That night God did so …
Then we get the whole whittling down of numbers so that God can be glorified from 32,000 to 10,000 to 300
V7 The Lord said to Gideon ‘with the three hundred men … I will save you … who took over the provisions and trumpets of the others
I never noticed that before … they were left with 9700 or was it 32,000 left over trumpets, swords, food.
Finally God knows Gideon’s heart and he gives him one more encouragement and lets him in on a conversation …
Judges 7:13–15 (NIV84)
13 Gideon arrived just as a man was telling a friend his dream. “I had a dream,” he was saying. “A round loaf of barley bread came tumbling into the Midianite camp. It struck the tent with such force that the tent overturned and collapsed.” 14 His friend responded, “This can be nothing other than the sword of Gideon son of Joash, the Israelite. God has given the Midianites and the whole camp into his hands.” 15 When Gideon heard the dream and its interpretation, he worshiped God. He returned to the camp of Israel and called out, “Get up! The Lord has given the Midianite camp into your hands.”
Now we are READY …
They shined the Light, Blew Trumpets, Shouted … and the army woke up and killed each other …
The end of the story is actually sad They tried to make him King in v23
He said no … but asked for a donation from the spoils, earrings, and garments and he created an Ephod … a Sacred Garment, meant as a memorial but eventually it became and object of worship.
He didn’t train up the next generation and as soon as he died … they worshipped the false gods again, 40 years later.
We will wrap up there tonight and pick up next week …