What Is the Good News of Yeshua? (Part 18)

Rejected by both His people and their king, God nevertheless remained faithful to His covenant and to His plan of reconciliation and salvation for the world. Despite the people’s treasonous intentions in demanding a king, God would redeem their evil plea by establishing a king in Israel with a heart both for righteousness and for Him. From the sons of a lowly shepherd, Adonai would choose His true champion. To correct the people’s mistake in King Saul, the God of Redemption would restore Israel’s kingdom in David. Read more

What Is the Good News of Yeshua? (Part 17)

Following the death of Moses, it would be his successor Joshua who would finally bring Israel into the land. With the tablets of the testimony before them, the people set off on their divinely appointed campaign to conquer and resettle their ancestral home. Through obedience to God, miraculously falling walls (Joshua 6:12ff), physics-defying celestial events (10:12f) and five years of fighting, the land promised to Israel’s fathers was theirs… mostly. God had dispossessed the previous occupants because of their wickedness, giving the land to His covenantal people (Deuteronomy 9:4-6, cf. Leviticus 18:3ff). And Israel served Adonai for all of Joshua’s days, and for all the days of the elders who outlived him… Read more

What Is the Good News of Yeshua? (Part 16)

Faulty, frail, imperfect Israel had long been waiting at the foot of God’s mountain. There, He brought Heaven to earth in preparation for the journey—and the purpose—of their lives. Through the giving of the commands, the construction of the Tent, and the creation of the priesthood, God introduced His people to the means for the remediation of sin. Not only would it form the foundation for their forgiveness, but the bloody basis for the atonement and reconciliation of the world. Read more

What Is the Good News of Yeshua? (Part 15)

The God of Israel requires blood for sin because “the life of the flesh is in the blood” (17:11) and “the wages of the sin is death” (Romans 6:23). Inasmuch as sin, disobedience, and violation of God’s commands incur a deathly deficit, the God of Atonement has assessed that that debt can only be paid with life. This is why “it is the blood which makes atonement for the soul” (Leviticus 17:11). Yet in order for sinners to be saved from paying with their own lives, the merciful, covenantal Creator provided a remedy whereby the blood from a sinless life could be accepted as payment for another’s sins. And since, among mere men, “there is none righteous, not even one” (Romans 3:10), God allowed for the substitution of blameless, spiritless animals to be that surrogate life. But because of the nature of those “same sacrifices that they continually offer” (Hebrews 10:1), such work could only ever serve as a reminder (Hebrews 10:3) that the problem of sin cannot be solved… not as long as the mediator—who has sin of his own—must use “the blood of others” to make atonement (Hebrews 9:25). For no matter how many innocent animals are slaughtered, “it is impossible for the blood of bulls and goats to take away sins” forever (Hebrews 10:4). And yet, this is not even the biggest problem where it comes to sin… Read more

What Is the Good News of Yeshua? (Part 14)

As the first anniversary of the Exodus drew near, while Israel remained at the mountain, God proceeded to detail through Moses the patterns and particulars of the priestly, propitiatory order (Leviticus 1:1ff). Serving also as food for the priests, the edible offerings brought by the people often included various combinations of grain, flour, bread, oil, spice, salt and wine. Yet most of the different types of offering-payments were mainly those of animal sacrifice, ranging from the less expensive turtledoves or pigeons to the larger and increasingly more costly sheep, goats and bulls. The people were invited to make voluntary offerings as acts of devotion to express thankfulness (7:12) or to make a vow (7:16). But when God’s commands were broken—resulting in sin—only a sin offering would suffice. Read more

What Is the Good News of Yeshua? (Part 13)

The Creator of the universe had made His choice: humanity’s national facilitator of reconciliation would be the groaning, ungrateful, stiff-necked people of Israel. In fulfillment of His covenant with the patriarchs, the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob had delivered His holy people through astonishing feats of power, and given them His commands of love with the sobering assurance of either abundant mercy or glorious wrath. In terrifying displays of authority, the God of Commandments—through His faithful law-giver Moses—made clear Israel’s objective and definition as a distinctive treasure among all the nations. As His priestly servant and mediator, God required Israel’s faithful submission and obedience to His word. But for the people of Israel to fulfill their uniquely ordained mission of helping to save the world, they first needed to be shown the method and the means of dealing with their own sin, and to find the way of righteousness that would accomplish their own reconciliation.

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The Bible claims that Yeshua is the Son of God, but how can the eternal Creator of the universe have a son? Did He mix with humanity to father biological offspring? Or maybe replicate His essence through some kind of cosmic reproduction? No, the reality and sense in which the God of Israel can have a Son—and for that Son to be Yeshua—is nothing like anything any mere mortal could conceive. And though it defies comprehension, it was through this embodiment of Himself that God decided—from the beginning—He would not only restore Israel, but bring salvation to the world.

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What Is the Good News of Yeshua? (Part 12)

As Moses neared the camp, he began to see and hear the sights and sounds of sin rising from the people. During his forty-seven-day absence while he was on the mountain with God, the people had “sinned a great sin” (32:30), having “turned aside quickly from the way that [God] had commanded them” (32:8). With the willful and ignorant assistance of Israel’s soon-to-be high priest, the people threw off their oath, cast their gold earrings into the idolatrous shape of a calf, bowed down to it, and triumphantly announced, “These are your gods, O [Israel], who brought you up out of the land of Egypt” (32:4).

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What Is the Good News of Yeshua? (Part 11)

To their newly stated national definition, thirsty, hungry, and temperamental Israel was instantly resolute in her response: “All that Adonai has spoken we will do” (Exodus 19:8). And with that resounding, unalterable voice of conviction and commitment, the people consecrated and washed themselves, complied with the instructions not to touch or approach the mountain, and quietly awaited further instructions from their God.

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What Is the Good News of Yeshua? (Part 10)

The Creator of the universe had been long at work to restore mankind from their self-induced separation from Him. Having chosen a people through whom He would make that Way, God set the sons of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob on their promised path. The following four-century journey of salvation and pain would lead them down to foreign Egypt in favor. And though it would also permit their oppressive enslavement there, God would still remember and fulfill His unbreakable covenant to Israel’s fathers, and multiply His people ten-thousand-fold. Out of their misery and suffering, God raised up reluctant but faithful Moses to confront Pharaoh and deliver Israel from bondage through powerful, supernatural acts and wonders. And by the shedding of the innocent blood of the lamb, the God of Deliverance saved Israel from Egypt’s national, deathly judgment and mightily set His people free.

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