Do you know what I know…?
Genesis 3:15 And I will put hostility between you and the woman and between your offspring and her offspring; her offspring will attack your head, and you will attack her offspring’s heel.
Isaiah 7:14 Therefore the Lord Himself will give you a sign: Behold a virgin shall conceive and bear a Son and shall call His name Immanuel.
Isaiah 53:7-9 He was oppressed and He was afflicted, yet He opened not His mouth; He was led as a lamb to the slaughter, and as a sheep before its shearers is silent. So He opened not His mouth. He was taken from prison and from judgment, and who will declare His generation? For He was cut off from the land of the living; for the transgressions of My people He was stricken. And they made His grave with the wicked—but with the rich at His death, because He had done no violence.
Micah 5:2 But you, Bethlehem Ephrathah, though you are little among the thousands of Judah, yet out of you shall come forth to Me the One to be Ruler in Israel, whose goings forth are from of old, from everlasting.
I want to start by my earliest understanding of this verse in Genesis. Most folks do not like snakes—certainly not all are against them, but most do not like the slithering things. There are people on TV shows who go snake hunting, and then “charm” the beasts with music or whatever. I truly took this to mean, that we are enemies of snakes and vice versa. I recognize they CAN be beneficial in my garden, and when aware of them, will happily allow them a space in my garden while I move to a different section. All good. Don’t bite me, and I won’t try to throw a shovel at your head to chop it off. That was my initial understanding of that verse. But there’s more to it than that. That is God’s first promise of a savior.
The promise does state there will be forever a mistrust between Satan and people, (Satan appeared to Eve in snake form). It goes on to state that the evil one would eventually be destroyed by a Savior, one who would suffer in his “heel” by stepping on Satan’s head; but the Savior would come from a woman. Many years later, a virgin woman bore the savior, a babe which grew into a young man who was crucified and died. . . .but then three days later He rose, ascended into heaven. Jesus was our pure, blemish free, sacrificial lamb. He was the final sacrifice. There were no more needs to slaughter animals for all the different sins from the Mosaic law. Jesus was the Supreme.
How could Jesus orchestrate His death to occur, when He was sinless, and to be killed hanging between two thieves? How could it be orchestrated for His body to be claimed by a wealthy man who was sympathetic and a silent believer of Jesus? Joseph of Arimathea went to Pontius Pilate and offered his brand new rock-hewn tomb to be the burial place. No one could make these predictions—and there are more than a hundred—if not God?
Who could predict there would be a call for a census so Joseph and Mary would leave their town and go to Bethlehem, and deliver the Savior there? Only God. It is so mighty, so real, so GOD!
These are just a couple of the prophecies in the Old testament that are found occurring in the New Testament. It took a while for me to connect and correlate, but it is AWESOME! Exciting!
When I first became committed to reading the bible each year, I certainly did not understand it all. I could get hung up in the Old Testament laws, numbers, the sheer number of animals being slaughtered, and frankly I missed a lot of what was supposed to be educating me. Why were all these laws important to me? What were the number of silver bowls and candle holders important enough to be there? Why should it be important how many pounds of gold, silver and whatever was donated by each tribe? So, I’m ashamed to admit, I did very little READING of that, and a bunch of skimming, hurriedly getting to an area that concerned the people doing something.
I was selective in the OT stories I really enjoyed.
But I learned the more I read, the more bible studies I took, the more I listened to preachers on TV and had the different orders from God, priestly sacrificial duties, the need for a blood sacrifice for forgiveness, I was getting to understand more and more of the Old Testament and how it related and prophesied about the coming Messiah.
Finally, Moses, awkward in speech, finally convinced pharaoh and the Israelites they needed to leave. God had provided the way after many difficult plaques, and they needed to flee.
They escaped. Can you imagine the fear, the anxiety, the doubt and trepidation? They were fleeing their homes and all that was familiar; and yes, they lived as slaves in Egypt for many years. But I am sure there were many hesitations dealing with the devil you knew, versus plunging into a desert and devil you did not.
It took me awhile to connect Joseph being in a direct line to Jesus. And really, then Tamar and her father-in-law, Judah as ancestors; wait, now Rahab was also a maternal distant grandmother. I need to pay more attention here. I love stories that have characters in a series; and what a series this is!
Now my understanding growing. I searched out timelines to show me which king was here, especially when Israel and Judah were at odds. I read books by great novelists who had researched and now made a vast series of these times and a king, one of my favorites was a series by Francine Rivers concerning Hezekiah and Manasseh and the rest of those.
But my point is, the dots started connecting. I had always enjoyed the New Testament. Suddenly, the light was gradually getting brighter regarding the Old Testament to me. And that made all the difference. I believe firmly that I needed the bible classes, the connections made by various television preachers and my church leaders, and the novelists who made these persons live, made them real. I had always been able to imagine Mary being frightened being told by the angel that she would carry the Messiah with no husband; but how much more her story meant when put in light of other women in her story.
My mind was opening to some of the verses that had been so foreign to me. Again, using timelines, getting a list of the many prophecies concerning the savior preached by so many of the prophets, windows were opening, connections being made. How awesome!
There is NO way that all the prophecies could be made starting from the time of His earthly birth to His death on a tree that one man could have accomplished. There is only one Man, one God who could have orchestrated, who did orchestrate, the greatest story. I am so glad I know the story and continue to learn more and more.
Thank You, God, for choosing me and ‘mybellaviews.’