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#16 Ask, Seek, Knock

series: Red Letter City

title: Ask, Seek, Knock

date: July 31, 2016

teacher: Jacob Bender

scriptures: Matthew 7:7-12, James 3:9-12, James 4:11, 1 John 4:20-21, Matthew 25, Proverbs 8:17, Colossians 1:18, Ephesians 4:15-16. 

#5 Culminating at Grace

Series: The Narrative of Grace

Title: Culminating at Grace

Teacher: Jacob Bender

Date: December 13, 2015

scriptures: Matthew 1:16-15, Matthew 1:1, 1 Corinthians 1:27, Matthew 18:20, Leviticus 25:1-7, Leviticus 25:5, 2 Chronicles 36:18-21, 1 Peter 2:5, Galatians 6:2.

Q: is everyone’s sabbath year the same? So if I start working in 2003, and you start in 2005, is my sabbath year 2010, yours 2012 or both in 2010?

A: You can read about it in Leviticus 25, but essentially what Happened was God said to the Israelites “when you come into the land I have given you… The land shall keep a sabbath.” So the way I have always understood it (I am not 100 percent though) is that from the time they all arrived, together, the cycle began.

How that applies to you today may vary… For me the primary takeaway from the sabbath year is, “do you trust God, truly? With everything?”

Simple, but in the new covenant, that is how I personally apply it.

Q: Do you think that Luke’s genealogy pertains to Mary & not Joseph? It would resolve some apparent contradictions between Matthew and Luke’s genealogies, but wouldn’t that also mean that Jesus was physically of the line of David through Mary?

That’s a great question, one that I wish I had mentioned in the sermon, and one that we don’t know for certain the answer to. It would make sense that the genealogy would belong to Mary because they are the same until we get to King David, and then the genealogy in Matthew continues through David’s son Solomon (the King) and Luke’s genealogy continues through David’s son Nathan. However, it is hard to say for sure because even Luke’s genealogy begins by saying (Luke 3:23) Jesus, when he began his ministry, was about thirty years of age, being the son (as was supposed) of Joseph, the son the Heli… Luke’s genealogy is listed in the more traditional way, only listing the Father and son, and actually takes it all the way back to Adam.

The other question that arises in Luke comes from Luke 2:4-5, when it says that Joseph goes to Galilee to register, because HE was of the house and lineage of David. It said that he went to be registered with Mary, who he was engaged to, who was pregnant, and it was during that trip that she gave birth to Jesus. The way this is written seems to emphasis that he needed to be registered, not her, and that she was marrying into the family.

Matthew in general follows the story of the birth of Jesus from the perspective of Joseph, while Luke takes it more from Mary’s perspective, also adding more weight to the possibility that the genealogy in Luke belongs to Mary. (ie – in Luke, we read about Mary’s encounter with her cousin, Elizabeth, about John the baptist leaping in Elizabeths womb when he is in the presence of the Christ living in a pregnant Mary. It also records Mary’s song the magnificat, and the angel of the Lord visits Mary in Lukes account, where Matthew records when the angel visited Joseph, and the battle that Joseph had internally to keep Mary as his wife after everything that had happened. Romans 1:3 also says that Jesus descended from David “according to the flesh” which many also use as evidence that Mary was also a descendant.

In this message, I should have made this more clear, because it is very possible that Mary was also of the line of David, but we know without a doubt that Joseph was, and because this study is on the genealogy in Matthew, we tried to look at it from the perspective of whom Matthew was writing to. Matthew was written to the Jews, to win the Jews to Jesus, and he knew that in that culture, if the Father, adopted or not, was not of the family line, they would never have accepted him as the savior.

So at the end of the day, Mary needed Joseph to not leave her alone on Christmas, and the Jews needed Joseph to accept Mary if they were going to accept Jesus. It can be said with certainty that Joseph was of the family line of David, and in the case that the genealogy in Luke does belong to Mary, it would reconcile some complicated issues between the two genealogies and would have fulfilled the prophecies with or without Joseph but it would not change the fact that to the Jewish culture whom Matthew was writing to win to Christ, Joseph was a key to this story.

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#1 The Decalogue

Series: Realities
Title: The Decalogue
Teacher: Jacob Bender
Date: September 13, 2015

scriptures: Exodus 20:1-17, Psalm 1:1-3, Exodus 11, Exodus 19:17, Deuteronomy 5:7, Exodus 34:28, Hebrews 1:1-2, Hosea, John 1:1, John 1:14

The word we translate as “commandments” is the Hebrew word dabar, and it really has a much simpler meaning than you would think. It means “words.” So the Hebrews said it this way, “The Ten Words” – or like we talk about in this teaching, they called it a ten word Ketubah. It was the terms of their marriage.

In the Greek, the Ten Commandments are “deka logos” – again, on the surface, it means, “the ten words” – many of you who grew up in a Catholic tradition or Lutheran or any more traditional denominations, you have probably heard of the ten commandments referred to as “The Decalogue.” And this is where get this term from. From “deka logos.”

So “the Decalogue” is a pretty famous name for the Ten Commandments, and it is the way the Greeks translated it.

Well, deca, as we said means ten, and logos which we just said means word, comes from the word… “Logue” means logic… and in the Greek it is the principle behind reality. You know the phrase “it’s only logical….” Well that may be a better way to look at the commandments… It’s really pure logic. It’s more of a reality than it is a law.

When you think of laws, you probably think of things like these:

Things like “No skateboarding” – but if you are a skateboarder, most likely, that sign is not going to stop you. Unless there is a police officer right there or someone of authority who can enforce the regulation that the sign is placing on you, then it is just a sign. Its more like a request that should you choose to not obey, may be met with a consequence of some sort.

A speed limit sign represents a law.

A “Do not Liter” sign represents a law.

But these, these are realities:

When you look at it this way, rules seem nice, don’t they? Rules you can break. Most rules you can screw up some times, and even if you do get caught, you will pay a price, in most cases do your time, and move on.

But with these, there is no slipping through the cracks… There is no “NOT getting caught”… and in fact you may not walk away at all. And if you do walk away, there is permanent damage.

And that is the Ten Commandments. Each and every one of these, if you do not follow them… You are going to crash. You are going to get burned.

You are going to hurt yourself. You are going to hurt your community. It is going to destroy you. Not because God is mad at you because you did something he said not to do so now you are getting punished… No, it’s not like that.

These things in and of them themselves are toxic.

Dr. Frank Seekins was the first one that I heard use an example like this, he gave the example of a speed limit sign vs. a low clearance sign and the differing consequences of ignoring the two… and in fact it was that description that inspired this entire series on the Ten Commandments that we are calling “Realities.”

So we hope that you will join us over these next 8 weeks as we look at an ancient text, hopefully through fresh eyes.

RESOURCES:

 

Here is more information about the Hebrew letter “yod”.

 

This ebook is a transcript of a multi-part teaching by Shane Willard. In it, he makes an amazing correlation between the five parts of a Jewish wedding, and the process that God brought the people of Israel through leading up to giving them the Ten Commandments. Pastor Shane is a friend of my Pastor in New York, and has been a guest in our church there. This low-priced ebook will be an amazing resource to you.

Dr. Frank Seekins is one of the leading authorities on Hebrew word pictures alive today. He did an amazing teaching about the Ten Commandments in word pictures, and this message “The Ten Realities” is in part the inspiration behind the series we are doing and the perspective which we are coming at this classic passage of scripture. “The Ten Realities” is the second teaching in this video, so to watch it you would either need to skip ahead, or first watch his teaching on honor.