Week 11: Day 5- Deuteronomy 18:21-22

(21) And if thou say in thine heart, How shall we know the word which the LORD hath not spoken? (22) When a prophet speaketh in the name of the LORD, if the thing follow not, nor come to pass, that is the thing which the LORD hath not spoken, but the prophet hath spoken it presumptuously: thou shalt not be afraid of him.

Deuteronomy 18:21-22

Explanation:

God raises the question that many of the children of Israel were probably thinking. How can we discern which prophets are from God and which ones are speaking on their own authority? How can we know which one to believe? “How shall we know the word which the Lord hath not spoken?”

God answers the question with this answer. The prophet that speaks on behalf of the Lord will have their foretelling come to pass. When God tells of something that will happen through His prophet it will happen.

This makes sense, because man being finite and bound by time and space would not have a capacity to truly foretell the future. Being an infinite, eternal, timeless, space-less, immaterial Being, God knows what will happen, and can substantiate His message through the prophet being affirmed by the supernatural foretelling of events that will come to pass.

Since the prophet that is false should be rejected, this would serve as a sufficient means for identifying people bold enough to try to fake speaking for God. It would also substantiate those who God wanted to speak as His representatives, saying what He wanted them to say.

Application

God is not speaking directly to mankind in the same authoritative way, giving new revelation to mankind in the way that He did with Moses, Isaiah, Paul or Peter. God has already spoken. He substantiated His Word in several ways.

In Old Testament Prophecies fulfilled in the Old Testament.

In the first coming of His Son. The Old Testament foretells of Jesus’ birth, death, burial and ressurection in a way that is undeniable in the New Testament.

By the external evidence of God working through the authors of scripture.

People like Paul, John, Peter, and the other authors of the New Testament were substantiated by having walked and been dicipled by Jesus, having performed supernatural signs and miracles in the name of Jesus, and giving their lives as martyrs by not denying Jesus as the Resurrected Lord and Savior.

By the internal evidence of God working through the pages of scripture.

The Bible testifies to itself of its authority. It is its own validation.

(12) For the word of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any twoedged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart.

Hebrews 4:12

(3) According as his divine power hath given unto us all things that pertain unto life and godliness, through the knowledge of him that hath called us to glory and virtue:

2 Peter 1:3

There are other evidences that could be mentioned, but it is enough to say this. Today we substantiate the messengers of God by the alignment of what they preach and teach with what the Bible says, and how they live this message out in their own lives.
When we speak, we must speak what God’s Word says. When we listen to someone teach us, the question on our hearts must be “is this consistent with what God’s Word says?”

Response:

  1. Do you treasure the miracle that is the written Word of God that you have in your posession? Do your actions and words substantiate this in your life?
  2. When you speak on behalf of God, are you diligently trying to say what God says in His Word?
  3. Are you listenting to people who are not speaking in accordance with His Word?

Week 5: Day 3- Numbers 22:28-30

28  And the LORD opened the mouth of the ass, and she said unto Balaam, What have I done unto thee, that thou hast smitten me these three times?29  And Balaam said unto the ass, Because thou hast mocked me: I would there were a sword in mine hand, for now would I kill thee.30  And the ass said unto Balaam, Am not I thine ass, upon which thou hast ridden ever since I was thine unto this day? was I ever wont to do so unto thee? And he said, Nay.

Numbers 22:28-30

Explanation:

This is obviously a strange and supernatural account.  The donkey sees the angel that Balaam doesn’t see. Balaam gets angry and beats him.  The donkey asks why, and Balaam responds. We’ll deal with the rest of the account and what follows in the next couple of days.  For now, a few things strike me about this exchange.

1. Balaam beating the donkey is presented here as negative.  He is not seen as noble because of it.

2. Balaam does not seem to be surprised by the talking animal, but rather responds to it, even reasoning with it at a certain level.

3. I can hear the skeptic saying, “There is no way this really happened. See! The Bible is not trustworthy. The Bible is a myth!”  To that I would reply, “Is anything to hard for the Lord? What is more incredible- that a donkey would talk or Genesis 1:1? If Genesis 1:1 is possible, then Numbers 22:28 is possible.  In fact you would imagine that miracles could be used, rarely by definition, to get our attention and substantiate God’s identity to us as he reveals himself.

Application:

God reveals Himself supernaturally.  Today what is supernatural is His Word in our hands and His Spirit in our hearts for those who know Him as Savior.  We have an incredible gift in God’s Word.  It is trustworthy.

Response:

Do you have an answer for the skeptic about this and other passages of the Bible?  If not, how can you resolve that problem?

Is there a portion of scripture that you need to believe specifically today?

What a way to end!

He which testifieth these things saith, Surely I come quickly. Amen. Even so, come, Lord Jesus. The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you all. Amen. (Revelation 22:20, 21)

This is the last two verses in Revelation, which is the last book of the Bible.

These verses tell us a couple of really cool things.

1. One day Christ is coming back.“Surely I come quickly. Amen.”One of the last things we’re told is that Jesus Christ is coming back. And He said He’s coming quickly.

2. The grace of Christ is for everyone. “The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you all.”. Isn’t that a really great way to end the Bible? You know that the grace of Christ is offered to all. It’s up to us to share that message!

Application:
Are these two truths a big part of your life? Should they be?