Bible Study - Sermon / Scripture Devotion

A Picture of Christ in the Old Testament – Chapter Eight – The Minor Prophets

This is a New Study I developed at Faith Baptist Church on Wednesday night.  I would love to hear from you.

Chapter Eight – The Minor Prophets

The Same, yesterday, today, and forever

That’s what Hebrews says about Jesus.  As the writer of Hebrews wrote to the Jewish Community, dispersed, perhaps to Rome or to Alexandria, he wanted them to fully understand Jesus.  And so, he used many “types” of Christ for them to see: God’s Word, Angels, The Sacrifices, The Law, The Prophets, The Promises, were all pointing us to Jesus.  Jesus was in it all, he was the fulfillment of it all, and so he is greater than it all.  So, as he closes his teaching he says in Hebrews 13:6 “so we say with confidence, ‘The Lord is my helper; I will not be afraid.  What can man do to me?”  And what is this confidence?  V8 “Jesus Christ is the same, yesterday, today, and forever.

Don’t believe those who try and paint a divergent picture of God, of Christ, in the Old Testament, New Testament, and Today.  He is, he has been, will be the same.  That is not to say that he does always for us what he has done for someone else, but his character does not change.  His glory doesn’t change.  So when we look at the Old Testament and find Jesus, then we have a better understanding of God in the Flesh, Immanuel, who we see in the Gospels.  We then better understand the Christian Living enjoined in the writings of the Apostles.  Through it all we can understand what he has said, how to apply the promises, carry out his commands, and live in expectation, Today.

So, one section still to walk through – The Minor Prophets, or the less recorded prophets.  They are NOT minor.  God’s word is never minor; it is always major.  Some of the greatest prophesies are in these minor works.  We only have time for a few, but let’s see.

Hosea

Oh what an amazing and wonderful thing it is when the Lord speaks.  It is truly an amazing thing when he speaks to us, calls us by name.  But as we have seen already that the Word of God given to his preacher is not always something pleasant.  I had preachers counsel me, “don’t be a preacher, unless God will not let you do anything else.” Because when the word of God comes it is not all flowers and fluffy clouds.  But I guess if God’s people were always following him, and in communion with him there wouldn’t be a reason for preachers.

And so God’s Word comes to Hosea …

In 1:2 –  … the Lord said to him, “Go, take to yourself an adulterous wife and children of unfaithfulness, because the land is guilty of the vilest adultery in departing from the Lord.”

“I’m sorry Lord, what was that?”

Israel was always seen as the wife of God.  So unfaithfulness to him and his commands was equal to adultery.  The Church is the promised bride of Christ, being prepared for a beautiful wedding in Heaven.

So he obeys God, then Hosea and his wife Gomer have a son, and name him Jezreel = God sows, because God was about to do some plowing under in Israel.  Then a daughter was born, Lo-Ruhamah = Not loved, because God’s love for Israel was not going to be shown.  And then they had another son, Lo- Ammi = not my people for v8 you are not my people and I am not your God

Wow …see a pattern developing … where is the good news?  V10 YET …

Yet the Israelites will be like the sand on the seashore, which cannot be measured or counted.  In the place where it was said to them, ‘you are not my people,’ they will be called ‘sons of the living God.’ 11 The people of Judah and the people of Israel will be reunited, and they will appoint one leader and will come up out of the land, for great will be the day of Jezreel

Where is Jesus?  In this adulterous generation where do we find Jesus? He is the seeker of the Sinner to be his Bride.  The same lover who seeks his beloved in the Song of Solomon.  The same one who seeks the one who wants to be loved and loving, seeks the one who is rebellious.  The same one also calls the fickle follower back to himself as Hosea would have to do when Gomer left him to return to her old ways.  And so Romans 5:8 God demonstrated his love toward us in that WHILE we were STILL SINNERS Christ died for us

The beginning of this fulfillment came in the ministry of Christ and the provision of the Cross

1 Peter 2:10 (NIV84) Once you were not a people, but now you are the people of God; once you had not received mercy, but now you have received mercy.

But as all his promises, it won’t only come true in theory, and in allegory, but in reality in the end times.  Revelation 7:4-9; Galatians 4:27

3:1 Go show your love to your wife again though she is loved by another and is an adulteress.  Love her as the Lord loves the Israelites, though they turn to other gods …

V2 so I bought her for 15 shekels of silver, and about a homer and a lethek of barley.  This price btw … the silver with the barley equal 30 shekels of silver … which Exodus 21:32 says in the cost of a lost slave.

So too, while we had sold ourselves to slavery, Jesus bought us … he was betrayed for 30 pieces of silver but the price was DEATH … and he counted and paid it to the full

So, 14:1 Return, O Israel, to the Lord your God.  Your sins have been your downfall! 2 Take words with you and return to him.  Say to him: Forgive all our sins and receive us graciously, that we may offer the fruit of our lips.”

Oh Listen, all we have to take with us to Christ are words … “Lord forgive … receive” with intent to worship him with our lives.  Anything else we bring comes up short … but everything we need is in Christ

Joel

The Lord is prominent in  … The Day of the Lord this is a concept that will be throughout the minor prophets.

2:1 Blow the trumpet in Zion; sound the alarm on my holy hill.  Let all who live in the land tremble, for the day of the Lord is coming. 

1:3 tell it to your children and let your children tell it to their children, and their children to the next generation

The Day of the Lord was the day Jesus was born and lived, died, and rose.  It will be the day / season of judgment, and restoration.  It will be eternity in his presence.  And it was the day he became MY Savior, Lord, and Friend

Amos

Jesus is the Judge of Nations in Amos

1:2 The Lord roars from Zion, and thunders from Jerusalem; the pastures of the shepherds dry up, and the top of Carmel withers

His judgment is always Just and he gives legal reasons for his indictments in chapter 1.

5:23-24 away with the noise of your songs!  I will not listen to the music of your harps.  But let justice roll on like a river, righteousness like a never-failing stream

6:1 Woe to you who are complacent in Zion

9:11 in that day I will restore David’s fallen tent.  I will repair its broken places, restore its ruins, and build it as it used to be …

Then in those days … prosperity will flow

Jonah

What a wonderful little story to be included in these prophets’ writing.

The word of the Lord came to Jonah … 2 go to the great city of Nineveh and preach against it, because its wickedness has come up before me

It is a proclamation of Judgment.  Not on God’s people but on a wicked people.  Jonah didn’t want to go.  There is no promise of anything gracious here, just a promise of judgment.  On one hand Jonah would expect to be HAPPY to deliver a message like this to a place so wicked.  Nineveh was as wicked as they came.  This is a people that always tried to top God and bring him down.  The city was founded by Nimrod.  He was grandson of Noah’s son, Ham.  Outside of scripture, sources and tradition say this is where Babel was built when the people began to move east … They were wicked, cruel.  They would build with the skulls of their defeated and cover their walls in the skins of defeated foes.  So perhaps Jonah was scared to go preach.  But though understandable, that was NOT why Jonah didn’t want to go … We know more at the end of the story about the encounter with God.  Although God never promised to relent if they repented … Jonah knew God … and when the people responded to the proclamation of judgment with repentance, sack cloth and ashes, fasting … 3:10 when God saw what they did and how they turned from their evil ways, he had compassion and did not bring upon them the destruction he had threatened.

And Jonah got angry … and then we find out why he ran … what he had said to God in the first place …

4:2 O Lord, is this not what I said when I was still at home?  This is why I was quick to flee … I knew that you are a gracious and compassionate God, slow to anger and abounding in love, a God who relents from sending calamity

Jonah knew the glory of God Exodus 34:6-7 … and he wasn’t afraid of Nineveh, he was afraid Nineveh might get SAVED!  Greatest Revival in history … and he was mad about it.

What do we see of Jesus?

… that he is CONCERNED about the Lostness of the Worst Sinners.

… that if he can save Me, he can save anybody

… that if he can save anybody, he can save me

Was Jonah real?  The Fish real?  Jesus said “As Jonah was 3 days in the belly of the huge fish so the son of man will be 3 days in the earth” …. Jesus believed he was real, and Jesus was buried for 3 days … if 1 isn’t true, is the other?

Micah

He was a contemporary of Isaiah, beginning with Uzziah’s son Jotham through Ahaz and Hezekiah.

1:3 Look!  The Lord is coming from his dwelling place; he comes down and treads the high places of the earth

“high places” refers to pagan worship sites.

Where do we see Jesus?

4:2 Come let us go up to the mountain of the Lord, to the house of the God of Jacob.  He will teach us his ways, so that we may walk in his paths.  The law will go out from Zion, the word of the Lord from Jerusalem.  3 He will judge between many peoples and will settle disputes for strong nations far and wide

Then it gives us a picture of the Millennium and Jesus ruling from Jerusalem

Swords into plowshares … spears into pruning hooks

4:5 all the nations may walk in the name of their gods; we will walk in the name of the Lord our God for ever and ever. 

Then we move into the passage that instructed the Magi …

4:8 As for you, O Watchtower of the flock … that is Migdal Eder  – the watchtower between Bethlehem and Jerusalem where they watched the flocks destined to be sacrificial lambs.  It was there where most likely the shepherds were that were called to Bethlehem that late winter, early spring night.

5:2But you, Bethlehem Ephrathah, though you are small among the clans of Judah, out of you will come for me one who will be ruler of Israel, whose origins are from old, from ancient times

Oh Jesus was born in Bethlehem but he didn’t start in Bethlehem … his origins are from of oldIn the beginning was the word and the word was with God and was God.  He was with God in the beginning

5:4 He will stand and shepherd his flock in the strength of the Lord, in the majesty of the name of the Lord his God.  And they will live securely, for then his greatness will reach to the ends of the earth.

Still we see his coming, and then still he is coming.  He provided peace, and yet peace is still to come.  Peace has come to our hearts and yet peace is still to come to our lives in a physical present way.

And finally in this book the most beautiful picture of Jesus

7:18-19 who is a God like you, who pardons sin and forgives the transgression of the remnant of his inheritance?  You do not stay angry forever but delight to show mercy.  You will again have compassion on us; you will tread our sins underfoot and hurl our iniquities into the depts. of the sea. You will be true to Jacob, and show mercy to Abraham, as you pledged on oath to our fathers in days long ago

He is a promise keeper

Nahum

Remember that the glory of God is Gracious, Compassionate, slow to anger, forgiving the guilt of our sin … but he will not let the guilty go unpunished …

So Nineveh, forgiven under the preaching of Jonah because of the repentance of the people.

Now 100 years later they have returned to their old ways, they are not repentant, and God brings their destruction and disappearance forever from history.

The other side of his glory … God will never send anyone to judgment, but a Just God must do what justice demands …

Nahum 1:2–8 (NIV84) The Lord is a jealous and avenging God; the Lord takes vengeance and is filled with wrath. The Lord takes vengeance on his foes and maintains his wrath against his enemies. 3 The Lord is slow to anger and great in power; the Lord will not leave the guilty unpunished. His way is in the whirlwind and the storm, and clouds are the dust of his feet. 4 He rebukes the sea and dries it up; he makes all the rivers run dry. Bashan and Carmel wither and the blossoms of Lebanon fade. 5 The mountains quake before him and the hills melt away. The earth trembles at his presence, the world and all who live in it. 6 Who can withstand his indignation? Who can endure his fierce anger? His wrath is poured out like fire; the rocks are shattered before him. 7 The Lord is good, a refuge in times of trouble. He cares for those who trust in him, 8 but with an overwhelming flood he will make an end of Nineveh; he will pursue his foes into darkness.

Habbakuk

Don’t ever think that God’s silence in trials means he doesn’t hear and won’t bring justice …

1:2 How long, O Lord must I call for help but you do not listen?

1:5 Look at the nations and watch – and be utterly amazed.  For I am going to do something in your days that you would not believe, even if you were told.

What we see in Habbakuk is a God who hears and answers prayer

Zechariah

Well we won’t look at every book.  But you may know I LOVE Zechariah.  You can go online to our website and watch my 17 sermons from this book.

1:8A man riding a red horse! … standing among the myrtle trees … 10 the man standing among the myrtle explained … they report to the Angel of the Lord, who was standing among the myrtle … Lord Almighty how long will you withhold mercy from Jerusalem … the Lord spoke kind and comforting words … I am Jealous for Jerusalem … I will return to Jerusalem with mercy

God keeps his promise … 70 years has passed … God keeps his promise

He is a God who is jealous for his own, and for his glory

He does get angry in Justice

He will return with Mercy – Ezekiel 10:18-19; 11:22-23

I will Bring Prosperity and Blessing

Isaiah 40:1-11Comfort my people … speak tenderly … every valley shall be raised, every mountain and hill made low … he tends his flock like a shepherd.  He gathers the lambs in the arms and carries them close to his heart …

A Picture of what Happens Spiritually when we Turn to God is in – 3:1-10 – I Believe it is a picture of the supernatural in our salvation and anytime we repent and turn to God.

V1 – satan standing at his right side to accuse him … Oh the devil doesn’t want you to repent even less than Jonah wanted Nineveh to hear the message of God.  who do you think directed Jonah’s thoughts?  Why do you think some of your biggest fusses happen in the car on the way to church?  How many headaches, cares, concerns, come to a peak during or before service

1. satan will accuse you, before God, before men, before yourself

2. Christ comes to your defense

V2 the Lord said to satan, “the Lord rebuke you, satan!  The Lord who has chosen Jerusalem, rebuke you!  Is not this man a burning stick snatched from the fire?”

Oh God is FOR you … you are never so far away as when you are turned from him, but you are never so close as when you turn your head, turn your heart, turn your steps back to him, he is right there … to snatch you from the fire …

Romans 8:33-34who will bring a charge against those whom God has chosen? Who is he that condemns? … Christ Jesus … died … raised … is also interceding for us

3. Christ Transforms Us

V3 Joshua was dressed in filthy clothes … 4 the angel said to those who were standing before him, “take off his filthy clothes”… see I have taken away your sin, and I put rich garments on you” … put a clean turban on his head (Crown)

M. Henry – now that he looks clean … let him look Great

Oh he doesn’t just take from us he replaces with so much greater … richer … eternal

4. He Commissions Us

If you will walk in my ways and keep my requirements, then you will govern my house and have charge of my courts, and I will give you a place among these standing here

 

Oh he saves us in the heavenlies to bring us to the heavenlies … Hallelujah

 

Oh I wish I could preach you the whole book, because I just love it … but one more

12:7 the Lord will save the dwellings of Judah first … 8 on that day the Lord will shield those who live in Jerusalem, so that the feeblest among them will be like David, and the house of David will be like God, like the Angel of the Lord … 9 on that day I will set out to destroy all the nations that attack Jerusalem 10 And I will pour out on the house of David and the inhabitants of Jerusalem a spirit of grace and supplication.  They will look on me, the one they have pierced, and they will mourn for him as one mourns for an only child, and grieve bitterly for him as one grieves for a firstborn son.  11 … in the plain of Megiddo …

 

They will look on Him … given because God so Loved … he lived among us in perfection … called us to repentance … showed us God’s glory, gave a sacrifice …

And they will mourn …

Many mourned when he died … but until we mourn our sin … we don’t really understand his death.  His death was more than a waste, it was a sacrifice for ME …

When we mourn our sin … and recognize his sacrifice … we are ready to receive … Grace and Supplication – God’s grace follows our repentance … Jonah knew it … it IS the Glory of God … slow to anger, gracious and compassionate, forgiving our sin …

John 6:37  whoever comes to me I will never drive away

 

From his wounds … God’s grace flows over us

Pierced, he presents himself for us …

Pierced he brings us in to God’s grace

Pierced he will remainJohn 20:27see my hands … reach out your hand and put it in my side … stop doubting and believe

 

Oh we will have no problem recognizing Jesus in Heaven.  The scars will still be there. And some day we will be in Heaven and Revelation 4 and 5 says God will be on the Throne arrayed in splendor.  All of the church, the priesthood of God will be there.  We will be dressed in white with crowns of gold on our heads.  Flashes of lightning and peals of thunder will come from the throne and the Holy Spirit will be ablaze before God.  There will be Heavenly Beings before the throne leading worship saying

 

Holy, Holy, Holy is the Lord God Almighty, who was, and is, and is to come

 

And every time they say that, we, the church will fall down in worship and lay our crowns down saying,

“you are worthy … to receive glory and honor and power, for you created all things and by your will they were created and have their being.” 

 

Then it says that God will have in his hand a scroll sealed up with seven seals.  And a call will go out across the multitudes of people, angels, and creatures asking “who is worthy to break the seal and open the scroll or even look inside?”  And no one in heaven or earth or under the earth will be worthy … Then one of those church folk, the 24 elders, maybe you, will say “do not weep! See, the Lion of the tribe of Judah, the Root of David has triumphed.  He is Able to open the scroll …”

And Then we will see a LAMB, looking as if it had been slain standing in the center of the throne … and He will take the scroll from the right hand of God and as we look on Jesus, the one they pierced, Still bearing the scars of our sacrifice, we will sing a new song

You are worthy to take the scroll and to open its seals

Because you were slain

And with your blood you purchased men for God

From every tribe and language and people and nation …

And all of Heaven will Declare

Worthy is the Lamb who was slain

To receive power and wealth and wisdom and strength

And honor and glory and praise!

To Him who sits on the throne and to the Lamb

Be praise and honor and glory and power

For ever and ever!

They will look on Him, The One Who Was Pierced …

Oh will YOU Look?

 

Pierced we see his love

Pierced we see the price has been paid

Pierced our sins are forgiven

Pierced we can be his children

 Look and Believe

Look and Receive

Look and Live

 

And so … chapter 13 says on that day a fountain will be opened … Oh what a Glorious Day … Idols banished …

Oh see him in 13:7 strike the shepherd and the sheep will be scattered …

Oh what a glorious day …

14:8 on that day living water will flow out from Jerusalem … 9 the Lord will be king over the whole earth.  On that day there will be one Lord, and his name the only name

V20 – Holy to the Lord will be inscribed on the bells of the horses, and the cooking pots in the Lord’s house will be like sacred bowls in front of the altar …

 

Oh God … on the day of Christ … the every day is amazing … the common place is supernatural and the supernatural common place …

 

Because Jesus Is Lord

 

If you have read through the Great Testament to God’s promises called the Old Testament you understand that you can’t fully understand the Testament to the Fulfillment of the promises called the New Testament, if you haven’t found Jesus in the previous testament.

 

May the Lord bless us as we see him in the fullest way we can … through his complete revelation in his word.  Old and New, exciting and mundane, Beginnings, Law, History, Poetry, and Prophesy … it is all by Jesus, it is all for Jesus, it is all to Jesus

 

Romans 11:33–36 (NIV84) Oh, the depth of the riches of the wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable his judgments, and his paths beyond tracing out! 34 “Who has known the mind of the Lord? Or who has been his counselor?” 35 “Who has ever given to God, that God should repay him?” 36 For from him and through him and to him are all things. To him be the glory forever! Amen.

Oh Who … Who … who?  It is Jesus … that’s who knows God, counsels with God, and reveals God … to him be glory forever and ever.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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