Why Does the New Testament Say
We Should Study the Exodus?
Lorraine Day, M.D.
Many “New Testament” Christians belittle the study of the Old Testament, thinking it to be unimportant for Christians, saying that the Old Testament is for the “Jews.” These Christians do not realize that there is no such thing as a “Jew”, a least not ethnically. (See Who is Israel? Who Is The Church? at the website www.goodnewsaboutgod.com)
Jewishness is a culture, not an ethnicity. Jewishness is the culture of the Talmud, the “holy” book of Judaism that turns the Bible upside-down and inside-out. The Talmud distorts and perverts every precept given by Jesus Christ when He was on earth. When Jesus rebuked the Pharisees and their traditions, calling the Pharisees vipers, hypocrites, and the synagogue of Satan, He was referring to their diabolic belief system. He was referring to what we now know as the Talmud, the written-down false doctrines of the “traditions of the elders” the Pharisees.
But the apostle Paul in the Tenth Chapter of 1 Corinthians, makes it very clear that the Exodus of the Israelites from Egypt “happened for examples” to those alive when Paul was writing, as well as those alive since that time, and those alive now, irrespective of their ethnicity. As far as God is concerned, there are only two groups of people: those who BELIEVE in Jesus Christ, and those who DON’T! (Though we know that eventually ALL will be in the group of Believers! See “What Happens At The Judgment.”)
Now all these things happened unto them for examples and they are written for our instruction upon whom the ends of the ages are come. 1 Corinthians 10:11
The term Israelites (notice the term is NOT the “Jews”) means those who worship the God of heaven, the God that Jacob (Spiritual name Israel) worshipped. The Spiritual name of Israel was given to Jacob after he became an overcomer, after he had given up his ways of deceit and had become a true follower of the God of heaven. (Genesis 32:28) The name Israel was given by God to affirm the change of Jacob’s character, from a deceiver to one “at peace with God and man.”
The term “children of Israel” is found in Exodus 1:1 to identify those of Jacob’s literal sons who went down into Egypt and whose offspring multiplied for 400 years while they were held captive by the Egyptians. Jacob (who later was given the Spiritual name Israel) was the grandson of Abraham and Sarah, two Babylonians. They both came to Canaan, a pagan nation, from Ur of the Chaldees, Babylon - another pagan nation. Abraham and Sarah, AND their offspring, were Babylonians or, if you prefer Canaanites. They were NOT “Jews.”
In addition, Jacob happened to be a twin. Jacob’s TWIN brother, Esau, became the leader of the Edomites, a group that NO ONE (including the “Jews” of today) claims was “Jewish.” How could one twin be “Jewish” and the other twin NOT be “Jewish”? Jacob was not “Jewish.” He was just the grandson of two Babylonians.
Flee From Idolatry
Let’s look at 1 Corinthians, Chapter 10 (Literal Concordant Translation).
1 For I do not want you to be ignorant, brethren, that our fathers all were under the cloud, and all passed through the sea,
Paul is obviously speaking of the Exodus of the Israelites from Egypt.
“The redemption of Israel out of Egypt was to typify the spiritual deliverance which is ours in Christ. All, indeed, were redeemed by the blood of the paschal lamb, but not all by any means pleased God in the wilderness journey. They all went through the Red Sea on dry land, all were identified with Moses, all ate the manna, and all drank the water brought forth by Moses’ rod in the desert.
“Yet, notwithstanding these privileges, they failed in self-control, they went back in heart to the flesh pots of Egypt, reverted to idolatry, sinned and murmured. . . These things still have their appeal to us unless we, like the apostle, reduce our bodies to bondage” to Christ Jesus. Knoch, A. E.,Concordant Commentary of the New Testament, p 257
2 and all are baptized into Moses in the cloud and in the sea,
3 and all ate the same spiritual food,
4 and all drank the same spiritual drink, for they drank of the spiritual Rock which followed. Now the Rock was Christ.
Notice here that Paul is telling us that CHRIST, Himself, was in the cloud leading the Israelites out of Egypt. Christ was the one giving the instructions to Moses.
Often, Christians say that God is the “Justice” part of the Deity and Christ is the “Mercy” part, because they know that when Christ was on earth, He never killed or even hurt anyone! “New Testament Christians” often are uncomfortable studying the Old Testament because they believe that it gives a picture of a warrior God, the “justice” God, a blood-thirsty God who kills His enemies, a God who supports war. But this is the “God” that the entire “Christian” Church worships, a “Killer God” who has a character just like “man.”
5 But not in the majority of them does God delight.
God was not happy with the way the majority of the Israelites behaved.
6 For they were strewn along in the wilderness. Now these things became types (examples) for us, for us not to lust after evil things, according as they did lust.
7 Nor yet even becoming idolaters, according as some of them, even as it is written, Seated are the people to eat and drink, and they rise to sport.
Eating, drinking and rising to “sport.” It sounds like our culture today, consumed with satisfying their appetites of all kinds.
8 Nor yet may we be committing prostitution, according as some of them commit prostitution, and fell in one day, twenty-three thousand.
9 Nor yet may we be putting the Lord on trial, according as some of them put Him on trial, and perished by serpents.
10 Nor yet be murmuring even as some of them murmur, and perished (destroyed) by the exterminator (destroyer).
The Israelites were constantly complaining, and because of this they perished in the wilderness. This is a very important lesson for us. As we go through life, we must be careful not to complain. God has written the script for our life before He created the world. EVERYTHING in our life is meant to build character in us to make us holy.
If we complain, we are really saying that God doesn’t know what He is doing that we don’t agree with the way He is running the world and presumably WE could do a better job. Those are the words of Satan, and if we utter them, we are Satan’s children.
11 Now all these things happened unto them for examples. And they are written for our admonition (instruction), upon whom the consummations of the eons have attained.
“The eons, of which there are five (See “Does Forever Really Mean Forever?”), are divided into two classes, the first three, which are preparatory and the last two, called the ‘eons of the eons’, which turn the evil of the first class into good. The last two eons, are the fruit and consummation of the evil eons. In spirit, Paul brought those under his ministry into the new creation. It is only thus that the consummations of the eons had already reached the Corinthians.” Ibid
We are now living in the third of the five eons. The fourth eon will begin with the return of Jesus Christ when the righteous will be taken to heaven for the 1,000 year millennium. The last, or fifth eon, will begin AFTER the millennium, when the unsaved dead are resurrected for the Great White Throne Judgment. The last eon, beginning with the Judgment, will be a very long period of time, possibly a thousand years. This is the time when the unsaved will be judged, reap what they have sown, and eventually turn back to right-doing (righteousness) and receive salvation.
“When Thy judgments are in the earth, the inhabitants of the world will learn righteousness (right-doing). (They will learn how to do right.) Psalm 94:15
12 So that, let him who thinks he stands, beware lest he fall.
13 No trial has taken you except what is human. Now faithful is God, Who will not be leaving you to be tried above what you are able, but, together with the trial, will be making the sequel also, to enable you to undergo it.
Notice the literal translation of this text, compared to the translation in the King James and other Bible version:
Verse 13 in the KJV:
There hath no temptation overtaken you but such as is common to man: but God is faithful, Who will not suffer you to be tempted above what you are able; but will with the temptation also make a way TO ESCAPE, that you may be able to bear it.
“God does not try us to break us down but to build us up. Hence He sends nothing insupportable. He does not, however, make “a way of escape”, as many of His saints have found by experience. If He did, why or how could that enable them to undergo it? They would not need to endure it if He took them out of it. He makes a sequel. This word occurs again in Hebrews 13:7: ‘contemplating the sequel (KJV end) of their behavior.’
“All the great examples of trial were sustained by a contemplation of its sequel. Joseph held the scepter in the prison. David wore the crown in Adullam. Even Job knew that he would see His Redeemer. We should not try to escape trial, but seek grace to endure it. We should not occupy ourselves with it, but contemplate the blessed outcome which it is designed to produce.” Ibid
14 Wherefore, my beloved, flee from idolatry.
15 I speak as to wise men; judge ye what I say.
16 The cup of blessing which we bless, is it not the fellowship (communion) of the blood of Christ? The bread which we break, is it not the fellowship (communion) of the body of Christ?
17 For we who are (the) many are one bread, and one body: for we are all partakers of that one bread.
The “One Bread”, of course, is Jesus Christ, the “bread (manna) from heaven” and the “Bread” represented by the Shewbread in the Sanctuary. Jesus feeds us Spiritually when we “feed” on His Word.
18 Behold Israel after the flesh: are not those eating the sacrifices participants with the altar?
This tells us clearly that there are TWO Israels: One “after the flesh” the carnal, earthly Israel, and the other is “of the Spirit” Spiritual Israel, the true followers of God, who is Jesus Christ.
This also is telling us clearly that Paul is talking about a particular subject: eating food sacrificed to idols
19 What am I then saying? That an idol sacrifice is anything, or that an idol is anything?
Paul tells us that if food happens to have been placed in front of an idol, it does not adulterate the food, because the idol is nothing. But if you become a stumblingblock to a new Christian, by eating something sacrificed to idols, then don’t do it, for HIS sake.
20 But I say, that the things that the Gentiles (nations - heathen unbelievers) sacrifice, they sacrifice to demons, and not to God: Now I do not want you to become participants with the demons.
“There seems little doubt but that the heathen divinities were no mere myths, but actual demons. These are rampant today in spiritism, and often deceive the saints into believing that they are the holy Spirit of God by mimicking the gifts that were bestowed” during Pentecost. Ibid.
This verse also shows us that the word mistranslated “Gentiles” has nothing to do with ethnicity, it pertains to a belief system. There were the Judeans, those who lived in the area of Judea, who worshiped the one true God (they didn’t do it very well, but they at least knew who He was), the heathen, (Gentiles) again designated by their religion who they worshipped, NOT their ethnicity. They worshiped many pagan gods. And then there was the ecclesia the true followers of Christ, especially the NON-Judeans.
21 You cannot drink the cup of the Lord and the cup of demons. You cannot be partakers of the Lord’s table, and of the table of demons.
22 Are we provoking the Lord to jealousy? We are not stronger than He is.
23 All is allowed me, but not all is expedient. All is allowed me but not all is edifying.
Paul is not talking about vegetarianism here. He is talking about eating food offered to idols. He is telling the Corinthians that it’s O.K. to eat food offered to idols, if you don’t become a stumblingblock to another new Christian.
24 Let no one be seeking the welfare of himself, but that of another.
Don’t be selfish. Be conscious that what you do, even though it may not be wrong in itself, it may viewed as offensive by another Christian.
25 Everything that is sold at the meat (food) market be eating, examining nothing because of conscience.
Again, Paul is not talking about vegetarianism. This whole passage is about whether or not it is wrong to eat food offered to idols.
26 For the earth is the Lord’s, and that which fills it.
Even though food has been offered to idols, idols can’t move or speak. All of the food belongs to God. He created it.
27 If anyone of the unbelievers is inviting you, and you want to go, be eating everything that is placed before you, examining nothing because of conscience.
28 Yet if anyone should be saying to you, This is a sacred sacrifice, do not eat it, for the sake of him who told you, and for conscience sake: for the earth is the Lord’s and that which fills it.
Again, we see clearly that this passage is about eating food offered to idols, not vegetarianism.
29 Conscience, I say, not your own, but of the other person: But why is my freedom being judged by another man’s conscience?
Paul is asking the rhetorical question,
30 For if I, with gratitude, am partaking, why am I being spoken evil of for that which I give thanks?
31 Whether you are eating or drinking, or anything you are doing, do all for the glory of God.
We are not our own. Jesus Christ bought us with His blood, on the Cross. He owns us! We do not have the right to eat as we want. We have the obligation to eat, drink and live the way Christ wants us to eat, drink and live. Everything we do must glorify God.
32 Do not become a stumbling block to Judeans (believers from Judea those who required “signs” in order to believe) nor to the Greeks (Unbelievers, mistranslated “Gentiles” those who seek after knowledge earthly “wisdom”), nor to the ecclesia of God (the body of true believers including especially the NON-Judean believers).
33 Even as I please all mankind in all things, not seeking my own profit (expedience), but that of the many, that they may be saved.
Frequently, the word “the” is dropped before the word “many” by the Bible translators. “The” many WILL be saved. “The” many refers to ALL except Christ. Christ is One - the head, and everyone else who has ever lived is encompassed in “the” many.
How do we know this refers to “the” many?
So Christ was once offered to bear the sins of (the) many. . . Hebrews 9:28
Certainly Christ bore the sins of ALL, not just “many.”
For as by one man’s disobedience (Adam) (the) many were made sinners. Romans 5:19a
Obviously Adam’s sin caused the entire human race to sin. Adam’s sin did not just cause “many” to sin. It is “the” many. Adam is one and everyone else is the “many.” 1 Cor 15:22 tells us “In Adam ALL die. . .”, not just “many.”
So by the obedience of One (Christ) shall (“the” same) many be made righteous. Romans 5:19b
Whenever the Bible speaks of Christ (One) and “many”, the literal translation explains that it is “the” many: One plus “the” many = ALL The same illustration is also used with Adam and “the” many. Here is yet another text to show that.
. . .For if through the offence of one (Adam) (the) many be dead, much more the grace of God, and the gift by grace, which is by one man, Jesus Christ, hath abounded unto (the) many.” Romans 5:14
All these texts show us that God eventually is going to restore AND save everyone “the” many. This is Universal Restoration.
In Hebrews, Chapters 3 & 4, God speaks of the rebelliousness of the Israelites during their exodus from Egypt, through the wilderness.
Wherefore, as God’s Spirit saith, Today if you will hear His voice.
Harden not your hearts, as in the REBELLION in the day of temptation in the wilderness
When your fathers (ancestors) tested Me, proved Me, and saw My works forty years.
Wherefore, I was angry with that generation and said, They do always go astray in their heart; and they have not known My ways,
So I sware in My wrath, they shall NOT enter into My rest. Hebrews 3:7-11
The author of Hebrews writes of the “Rebellion” in the wilderness by the Israelites. These experiences are written down for examples to us, examples of how we should not stray from God into idolatry, licentiousness, lusting after food and drink. When we stay close to the Lord, sin will not be attractive to us and we can then “enter into God’s Sabbath Rest.” (Hebrews 4:1-11)
So, What Are Some Of The Lessons Taught To Us By The Exodus?
1. The Health Message How to live, eat and drink the way God wants us to, not giving in to our own desires.
2. How not to become a stumblingblock to others.
3. How we must quit complaining as we go through life. Everything that happens to us has been predestined by God. And No One can do it better than God!
4. How not to become an idolater, whether to idols of wood and stone, or to idols of riches, fame, or even family. Anything that comes between us and God is idolatry.
5. How to enter into God’s Sabbath Rest.
6. The majority of professed Christians will wander away from God, just as did the Israelites of old.
© Lorraine Day, M.D. 2006. All Rights Reserved.
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