The opening verses of this article state that the Lord repays those who hate Him to their face. Unlike the coward that shoots a man when his back is turned, the Lord assures the haters that they will recognize the hand that repays them for their hatred of Israel.
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Genesis Chapter 35: Benjamin Born, Rachel Dies and is Buried, Isaac Dies and is Buried in the Tomb of the Patriarchs (Cave of Machpelah)Mar 9th, 2010 | By admin | Category: Genesis, Verse by Verse --Studies led by Br. Frank Shallieu (Click on Book name)
At last, Jacob arrived at Mamre in Hebron where Isaac was. Thus Jacob met Isaac while his father was still alive. Isaac died at age 180. Esau and Jacob were together for the burial of their father. Since the cave of Machpelah was right there in Hebron, it was convenient to bury Isaac there with Abraham, Sarah, and Rebekah (Gen. 23:17-20; 25:8,9; 49:30-33). Abraham died at 175, Isaac died at 180, Jacob died at 147, and Joseph died at 110 (Gen. 25:7; 35:28; 47:28; 50:26).
Abram had been journeying south into Canaan. When famine came, he continued on into Egypt, which was known at that time for its fertility. His going to Egypt probably was not disapproved of God, but his strategy regarding Sarai was wrong. However, it was proper for him to subsequently return to Canaan, build an altar (at the site of the earlier second altar), receive assurance from God regarding the covenant, and start all over again.
The “man” Jacob met was an angel (Hos. 12:4). Something must have happened to make Jacob think this personage was a messenger of God. Since God did use human prophets to deliver messages, Jacob did not realize he was speaking to a materialized angel until later. The conversation must have been so inspiring that Jacob did not want the messenger to depart without giving a blessing. Hence Jacob began to wrestle with him for the blessing.
Joshua was saying that Terah and Abraham were ungodly unbelievers in the world, but they were called out. God took Abraham, the Israelites’ forefather, out of that environment and made him a believer. Abraham was brought through the “flood” (across the Euphrates) just as the Israelites were brought through the Red Sea and across the river Jordan. The spiritual lesson is that the heritage of the old man, which is ingrained in our human nature, will again conquer us if we do not fight. We must resist the world, the flesh, and the devil. Joshua was telling the Israelites to resist temptations—to remain obedient. By tracing this history, Joshua showed how God led the Israelites.
In this chapter, Paul directed attention primarily to the Gentiles. Before that, he spoke mostly to the Jewish portion of the class and discussed the prejudices they had to override in order to live together in harmony with the Gentile converts to Christ. After speaking to the Jewish element, and sometimes rather strongly, Paul now turned to the Gentiles and said they, too, should not be high-minded. If some of the natural branches of the olive tree had been broken off in order that wild branches could be grafted in, then the wild branches could also be broken off and the natural branches grafted back into the stock of the olive tree. Paul added that blindness in part has happened to Israel until the fullness of the Gentiles is brought in, and then “all Israel shall be saved” (Rom. 11:26).
The name Elimelech means “God is King.” His wife’s name, Naomi, signifies “pleasantness,” “pleasant one.” Mahlon and Chilion were their two sons. Mahlon means “sickly,” “one having an infirmity,” and the thought of Chilion is “pining” or “wasting.” Both of the sons’ names suggest a process of illness, a sickly condition. In antitype they represent the Jewish people, the ten-tribe and the two-tribe kingdoms, who rejected Jesus. Jesus said, “Behold, your house is left unto you desolate” (Matt. 23:38).
Ruth ended up in “a part of the field” that belonged to Boaz. At first glance, her being there seemed to be by chance, but she was providentially guided. The “field” was actually a valley or a plain, so the thought is that Ruth went to Boaz’s portion of the plain.
The Law required that corners of the field not be reaped in order to leave them for the poor. Therefore, the poor were at liberty to enter the corners and glean there. However, Ruth “gleaned … after the reapers”; that is, she gathered the “crumbs,” the residue, after the reapers had gone through. Whatever fell to the ground when the grain was bound in bundles was also to be left for the poor.
The Book of Ruth is a beautiful story of the Gospel Age from the standpoint of principle and the things that endear the Ruth class to Boaz (Jesus), but when Ruth and Naomi came back to Israel, it was the time of harvest. Hence, at that point, the picture shifts down to the end of the Gospel Age. Ruth 2:23 says that Ruth gleaned through both the barley and the wheat harvests. In gathering the wheat, she threshed only for her private use. Regarding the end of the age, the collective standpoint is also significant. Ruth gleaned to the end of the barley and wheat harvests and dwelled with her mother-in-law.
How did works of the flesh apply to Abraham? The term “pertaining to the flesh” refers to circumcision, which chapter 4 will treat. The topic is justification, but Paul was addressing the Jewish element in the class, who had confidence in the flesh. They used circumcision as an indicator of whether or not one was a true believer, and of course almost all Jews were circumcised after birth as a perfunctory act. However, their making such a point about circumcision cast an inference on Gentiles, who, as a rule, were not circumcised. Gentiles were the uncircumcised in the ecclesia, and Jews, having this mark in their flesh, tried to indicate that to really be in the family, to be a bona fide member, one had to go through this ritual. Paul said, “Are ye so foolish? having begun in the Spirit, are ye now made perfect by the flesh?” (Gal. 3:3). “For we are the circumcision [of the heart], which worship God in the spirit, and rejoice in Christ Jesus, and have no confidence in the flesh [in the ritual of circumcision]” (Phil. 3:3). The ritual of circumcision is not a true indicator, for it can be done perfunctorily.