Hebrews 11 is known as the “faith chapter” of the Bible it contains a list of several heroes of the Old Testament who were known for their great faith. Number three on this list is Noah, who, “being divinely warned of things no yet seen, [and] moved with godly fear, prepared an ark for the saving of his household, by which he condemned the world and became heir of the righteousness which is according to faith” (Hebrews 11:7 NKJV).
The Old Testament concept of being clean can be difficult to grasp. The basic idea sounds foreign to modern ears, and the legislation that describes how that state is achieved and maintained can overwhelm us, making books like Leviticus, Numbers, and Deuteronomy much more difficult to understand. But when we acquire a clearer understanding of the notion, we find that the image of being clean is a helpful one that spreads its influence from Genesis through Revelation.
Times of misfortune are also likened to the unexpected and inescapable nature of a trap: “Makeover, no one knows when their hour will come: As fish are caught in a cruel net, or birds are taken in a snare, so people are trapped by evil times that fall unexpectedly upon them” (Eccles 9:12). These harsh times could be the product of their own making, as in the case of the exile of God’s people from the Promised Land that entrapped them (Isa 42:22; Lam 4:20; Ezek 19:8).
Ancient hunters used four different trapping devices to catch game animals and birds: the pit trap, the snare, the entangling net, and the fowler’s net. In the case of the pit trap, the hunters dug a hole on a game trail that was big enough to hold the animals and deep enough to prevent its escape once it had fallen in. A net was stretched over the top of the pit and disguised so that it looked like solid ground. When an animal stepped on the net, the apparently solid ground collapsed, tripping the animal (Psa 35:7; Jer 18:22). The snare was also set along a game trail. It consisted of a cord with a loop on one end that could tighten around an animal’s foot. The
The Bible also contains examples of flogging that are figurative or symbolic. In several places in Proverbs we read of a spirit that has been flogged (NIV “crushed”) Heartache can be unbearable; it can beat down one’s spirit like a whip on the bare back, robbing us of joy and leaving up physically exhausted (Prov 15:13; 17:22; 18:14). Sometimes that heartache is caused by those who speak maliciously about us. That is why the tongue itself is likened to the whip that delivers a flogging (Job 5:21).
These commercial activities that upset Jesus were being conducted in an outer court of the Jewish, temple during the observance of the Passover in Jerusalem.
All male Jews were expected to attend this festival, even if they lived a long distance from Jerusalem (Exod 23:17). The money changers were probably exchanging foreign coins of these pilgrims for the appropriate coins with which to pay the temple tax (Matt 17:24).
Looking at Genesis 1, were read that God created the heavens and the earth in such a way that they are functional, vibrant, and pulsating with life. On the fifth day, God started forming the creatures that would live on the earth. Then, on the sixth day, he reached the pinnacle of his creative purposes with the creation of humankind.
In the Old Testament, the object erected time and time again to communicate the presence and power of God was an altar. The altar could be a single rock or a loosely organized arrangement of large stones, so people were never far from an altar or could build one in a few moments. Nothing was more prominent as a biblical image for worship and allegiance to God than the altar. It is no exaggeration to say that the most visible sign of one’s devotion to the true God in the worship of the old covenant was the building of altars or traveling to them for acts of sacrifice or offering. Continue reading SIGNS AND SYMBOLS OF THE BIBLE (ALTAR)→
Elevate site, usually found on the top of a mountain or hill; most high places were Canaanite places of pagan worship.
HEATHEN WORSHIP AT THE HIGH PLACE: The average high place would have an altar (2 Kings 21:3; 2 Chron 14:3), a carved wooden pole that depicted the female goddess of fertility (Asherah), a stone pillar symbolizing the male deity (2 Kings 3:2), other idols (2 Kings 12:31; 13:32; 16:32-33). At these places of worship the people sacrificed animals (at some high places children were sacrificed according to Jer 7:31), burned incense to their gods, prayed, ate sacrificial meals, and were involved with male or female cultic Continue reading DEFINITON OF THE DAY (HIGH PLACE)→