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Bible Readings

by

Ron Parsons

Introduction 2:

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The aim of this series:

“Then He said to them, ‘O fools, and slow of heart to believe all that the prophets have spoken: ought not Christ to have suffered these things, and to enter into His glory?’ And beginning at Moses and all the prophets, He expounded to them in all the scriptures the things concerning Himself.” Luke 24:25-27.


Introduction part 2

I’d like to put a suggestion to you about something else I have seen in the book of Genesis. See if you can see it too.

There is an interesting group of verses in this early record in the Bible. Here is the first of them.

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Genesis 2:4.

These [the words which have gone before, from 1:1 to 2:3] are the generations [the story of the beginnings] of the heavens and of the earth when they were created, in the day that the LORD God made the earth and the heavens.

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Unlike modern writers who tell us who they are at the beginning of their books, the ancient/s were identified only at the end, and this usually by someone else in harmony with the thought that the author did not "blow his own trumpet". Thus, the previous record in Genesis is the "story" from the LORD God, Jesus, passed down from generation to generation.

The words were later written in a scroll by Moses, but he identified the Author of them for us as the Son of God. Only He could tell us of those events because most of them happened before man was created. Of course, it was not written as we would write today, but was handed down orally over the centuries until Moses put "pen to paper".

In like manner, Moses tells us that the next portion of the Bible, Genesis 2:5 through to 5:1, was authored by Adam, for it is the tale of the events he personally lived through.

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Genesis 5:1.

This [the words before this point] is the book of the generations [beginning] of Adam.

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Following this pattern, the next section after that (Genesis 5:2 to 6:9) was recorded by Noah, and tells us of the story of the Flood.

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Genesis 6:9.

These are the generations [the beginnings, or the story] of [by] Noah…

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The verses following were authored for us by the sons of Noah, for it is their version of events which is recorded in Genesis 6:10 to 10:1.

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Genesis 10:1.

Now these are the generations [the story] of [by] the sons of Noah, Shem, Ham, and Japheth: and to them were sons born after the flood.

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Shem told the next portion of the Bible and Moses appended his signature of identification at 11:10.

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Genesis 11:10.

These are the generations of Shem: Shem was a hundred years old, and begat Arphaxad two years after the flood...

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By chapter 11:27 we have come to the end of the story supplied by Terah the father of Abraham.

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Genesis 11:27.

Now these are the generations of Terah: Terah begat Abram, Nahor, and Haran; and Haran begat Lot.

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Following this thought through we can see that the next long portion of the narrative of Genesis, 11:28 to 25:11, was recorded by Ishmael, the firstborn of Abraham.

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Genesis 25:12.

Now these are the generations of Ishmael, Abraham's son, whom Hagar the Egyptian, Sarah's handmaid, bore to Abraham:

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Then his brother Isaac told us about him.

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Genesis 25:19.

And these are the generations of Isaac, Abraham's son...

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Esau told us about Isaac up to 36:1, and then went to tell us about himself in 36:2-9! (He was not a Christian.)

Jacob composed the latter events in Esau’s life between 36:10 and 37:2.

Then Moses began to compile the record for us.

 

Something else you may be interested in.

The five books written by Moses, the Bible books from Genesis to Deuteronomy, which are called "The Torah" by the Jewish people, tell us not only WHAT happened, but also WHY it happened. Therefore they permit us to discover the laws or principles of history. Once we know those laws we may also peer into the future and come to an assessment of what is going to happen to humanity, and especially, of how we are to be saved from our present existence. The wise man knew this and said:

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Ecclesiastes 1:9-10.

"The thing that has been, it is that which shall be: and that which is done is that which shall be done: and there is no new thing under the sun. Is there any thing whereof it may be said, 'See, this is new'? It has been already of old time which was before us."

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The five books are:

Genesis - the beginning and how we got into sin (aka Egypt/sinful world).

Exodus - how to get out of Egypt (sin) and meet at the sanctuary (Christ).

Leviticus - the laws (principles) of Christian life.

Numbers - the result (beginning) of failure.

Deuteronomy - the lesson of how to get out (exodus) repeated..

........................................ (and continuation of the failure)

 

This then, is one of the major reasons for the existence of the Bible.

Each story has been carefully selected by the Holy Spirit, and the minds of the writers have been guided (not controlled) to present them in such a way that we can understand them in human terms. But, because the Bible was compiled by both human and divine, we need the presence of the Spirit each time we read it to bring to our minds the present (spiritual) truth of it. He was not the Author, but the Guide, in the collection we know as "The Book."

It contains no contradictions, but there are "overlaps". Just as the dispensations (the time periods of Biblical history) overlap by the second one starting before the first once finishes, some stories in the Bible are repeated, with one having greater detail than the other. For instance, in Mark’s story of the madman of Gadarene, he mentions only one person. Mark 5:1-15. Matthew’s account tells us that there were two madmen there. Matthew 8:28-34. This is not a contradiction but simply Mark being impressed by one man’s behaviour more than the other. The Spirit soon shows us what is important in the story if we allow Him.

Similarly, the death of king Saul is ascribed to God’s action, but the truth is in the second set of verses (which actually comes first in the chapter!).

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1 Chronicles 10:13-14.

So Saul died for his transgression which he committed against the LORD, even against the word of the LORD, which he kept not, and also for asking counsel of one that had a familiar spirit, to inquire of it; and inquired not of the LORD: therefore He slew him, and turned the kingdom to David the son of Jesse.

1 Chronicles 10:4-6.

Then said Saul to his armourbearer, "Draw your sword, and thrust me through therewith; lest these uncircumcised come and abuse [torture] me." But his armourbearer would not; for he was sore afraid. So Saul took a sword, and fell upon it [he committed suicide].

And when his armourbearer saw that Saul was dead, he fell likewise on the sword, and died. So Saul died, and his three sons, and all his house died together.

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Here is a great code for understanding the way God’s system works. The texts are just representative, you can find many others which would do just as well.

1. God protects saint and sinner alike with His grace. Romans 3:23-24.

2. Sin is chosen against the advice of God. Job 22:15-17.

3. The Spirit withdraws His pleadings. Isaiah 54:7-9.

4. The person leaves God and the result is trouble. 2 Chronicles 29:8.

5. God gets the blame. Psalm 10:1.

(He often pre-empts the sufferer’s accusation by accepting the responsibility. Isaiah 45:7.)

6. But He is innocent. Matthew 27:4.

7. The sinner repents and returns to our Father (the prodigal son).

8. He is allowed to protect again until the next temptation.

 

Till next week,

Ron.

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