QUESTIONS/ANSWERS FROM THE QUESTION FORUM
Group Number 69
ON JESUS BEING CALLED "GOD" IN HEBREWS 1:9. I guess what is obvious to one isnít obvious to another. I do see God speaking of an earthly ruler in such terms. I see it in 1 Samuel 7:12-16; 1 Chronicles 17:11-14; and Daniel 7:13-14, 27 to name a few which come to me without much research. I see these verses as references to the Messiah. He is an earthly ruler above all other rulers and represents God perfectly. Psalm 45:7 says, ďYou have loved righteousness and hated wickedness; Therefore God, Your God, has anointed You With the oil of joy above Your fellows.Ē I read this verse as God, YHWH, being the God of this person God calls God. (If that sentence isnít confusing, Iíll try to do better next time!) The God is anointed above his fellows. Would that be fellow Gods? I donít see how. I donít think this Psalm refers to this God on the throne as being deity. I think it is in reference to the Messiah ruling the world sometime in the future.
" I donít know of any biblical references to angelic rulers. If you know of one, can you point it out to me?"
There are "principalities and powers in the heavenly places" (Eph 3:10), as well as despotic principalities and powers that were overthrown by Jesus (Col 3:15), and against whom believers wrestle (Eph 6:12). There was a "prince of Persia" that withstood a holy angel for twenty-one days (Dan 10:12-20). The Revelation speaks of an angel who had power over fire (Rev 14:18), another who had power to punish men (Rev 16:18), and one who had "great authority" (Rev 18:1). Michael is an archangel who stands for the people of Israel (Jude 9; Dan 12:1) -- to name a few.
"I do see God speaking of an earthly ruler in such terms."
You have missed the point of the Hebrews text. God never personally addressed an earthly ruler as "God." He has addressed the Son in that manner -- which is the point of the text. On one occasion the Lord told Moses He would make him as "god to Pharaoh" (Ex 7:1) -- but God never personally addressed Moses as "God." He did, however, address the Son as "God." God has never addressed any created personality as "God." In fact, He is dogmatic about this: "Fear ye not, neither be afraid: have not I told thee from that time, and have declared it? ye are even my witnesses. Is there a God beside me? yea, there is no God; I know not any" (Isa 44:8). Yet, in a personal word to the Son, He said "O God." You will have to take this matter up with God Himself. There is no point to arguing it with me.
"The God is anointed above his fellows. Would that be fellow Gods?"
The "fellows" are the "brethren" with whom He identified in taking upon Himself the "form of a servant" (Phil 2:5-8). This very point is particularly developed in the second chapter of Hebrews, where He refers to them as "My brethren" (Heb 2:12). Also, the subject elaborated in of Hebrews 1:9 is Jesus coming into the world, not a future reign (Heb 1:6).
If you are contending that Jesus is not properly called "God," then you must explain why the demonic world worshiped Him (Mark 5:6-9), and multitudes of people as well (Matt 2:11; 8:2; 9:2; 14:22; 15:25; 28:9,17; John 9:8, etc.). An angel rebuked John for attempting to worship him (Rev 19:10; 22:8-9). But no one was ever rebuked for worshiping Jesus! In fact, when He entered the world as a babe, God Himself commanded all the angels to worship Him (Heb 1:6). You will also worship Him, bowing your knee to Him and confessing that He is Lord. If, while you are in this world, you want to contend that Jesus is not Divine, that is your business. But you will make no such contention when you see Him as He His, in all of His glory.
"Why would God need to command someone to worship to worship God? God commanded the angels to worship His Son. When God commands one to worship, one worships. That is not proof Jesus is God. It is proof of the honor God wants to give to His Son."
Angels had never worshiped a man before, and apart from Jesus Christ, they never will. It was AFTER the Lord had humbled Himself, laying aside equality with God, that the angels were commanded to worship Him. You must be able to distinguish between the humanity of Christ and His Person. He was in a differentt form prior to this, having a glory that was properly identified with God himself, not angels (John 17:5).
Where is there the slightest evidence that God wants to give the honor of worship to anyone that is not, in His own estimation, "God"? And how is it that it is declared that, prior to coming into the world, our Lord was "in the form of God," (Phil 2;6), and was the "exact representation of His nature" (Heb 1:3). The point of Hebrews is that such things have never been said of any created personality, regardless of their high rank.
It was said of the Lord Jesus, however, at His lowest point -- when He "came into the world." And how is it that He received worship from both men and demons, without the slightest suggestion that it was out of order? And if Jesus received worship from them, does He receive it from you? Do you worship Jesus? Do you acknowledge that the fullness of Deity dwelt in Him, as is affirmed (Col 1:17; 2:9)? And do you not see that if this was true AFTER He voluntarily took upon Himself the form of a servant, entering the world to die (Heb 10:5-9), much more was it true of Him before that? Even the Jews knew that Jesus affirmed
equality with God when He declared God was His Father (John 5:18). How is it that you struggle with this?
Would you include in "those under the earth to be those who are dead, demons or both?
The phrase "under the earth" is a most intriguing one. Moses used it of the domain of certain sea creatures (Ex 20:4).
Philippians 2:10 uses it as one of the domains from which the Lord Jesus will be honored by the bowing of the knee and the confession of the mouth. It is my opinion that the emphasis of this text is particularly the subjugation of Christ's enemies. If that is true, then those "under the earth" include the ungodly dead and the world of evil spirits who are aligned against the Lord's Christ. Some versions, emphasizing this perspective, translate the term "underworld" (New Jerusalem Bible and Basic Bible English). Both of these versions say "under the earth" in Revelation 5:3,13.
Revelation 5:3 and 13 uses the term in a favorable sense. Here is appears to be the realm occupied by the godly dead, and would be similar to "under the altar" (Rev 6:9).
"Under the earth," therefore, is the domain occupied by unseen spirits, not bodies. It does not refer to the grave. The texts in Revelation confirm this is the case, for activity is taking place there. The phrase appears to denote a realm occupied by those who have in some way trafficked in this world, whether in the flesh, or in the form of demons, principalities, powers, etc. Jesus will be honored by every personality presently occupying that area: willingly from the redeemed, unwillingly from the lost and fallen spirits.
What is the deal with the "ban" in the OT? Why did God put some things under the "ban?" I mean, it would seem good to put some of that stuff to good use instead of just destroy it. thanks for your help, Troy
I am not sure what you mean by "the ban." I am assuming you are referring to the Lord's instruction to Israel not to take the cursed things from the city of Jericho. I believe this is what you are referring to. "But as for you, only keep yourselves from the things under the ban, lest you covet them and take some of the things under the ban, so you would make the camp of Israel accursed and bring trouble on it" (Joshua 6:18).
In this particular text, God told them why they were not to take those things: "lest you covet them and take some of the things under the ban." God was providing for Israel, just like He did all through the wilderness. He was giving them the land of Canaan, and they did not require the things the heathen people in the land possessed. Those things had been defiled by the idolatry of the heathen nation, and were thus associated with the devil who had enslaved those people. Just as there are things through which God works, there are also things through which the devil works. They tend to draw people away from God, and are therefore to be avoided.
God did not always command the people to react in this way. When they were delivered from Egypt, they took all manner of things from the Egyptians (Exodus 3:22; 12:36). When the Syrian army was chased from their camp by a noise produced by God, they left their possessions behind. Some Israelite lepers ate the food, and carried out their silver and gold. They also shared the spoil with the rest of the king's household (2 Kings 7:6-16). When David killed Goliath, the Israelites plundered the tents of the Philistines (1 Samuel 17:53). The same thing happened when Israel defeated the Ethiopians (2 Chron 14:12-14).
But it was different with Jericho. God tested Israel there, forbidding them to become covetous when they first entered the promised land, knowing they would be distracted from the recollection that he had brought them there.
When you die does your soul go to heaven right away?
The Scripture says it this way, "absent from the body, and to be present with the Lord" (2 Cor 5:8). We are not sure of everything that entails, but it will involve a closeness that was not experienced while the person remained in the body. John saw the souls of those who had been beheaded because of their testimony of Jesus. They are said to have been "under the altar' -- and the altar was in heaven (Rev 6:9). The moment Lazarus died, he was carried by angels to Abraham's bosom (Luke 16:22). When Stephen was stoned to death, He saw Jesus standing on the right hand of God (Acts 7:56). I assume it was to receive Stephen, for he said, "Lord Jesus, receive my spirit" (Acts 7:59). When Jesus comes again, He will bring believers who have died with Him (1 Thess 4:14). That means, of course, that there were with Him until then.
We will be most fully with Jesus when we have been gathered to Him at his coming (1 Thess 4:16-17). That does not mean we will not be with Him at all until that time. In my understanding, upon death, we will be with the Lord, but not in the fullest sense of the word. That is why the revelation speaks of souls being "under the altar." It is something like being on the porch of the house, but not in the interior of it. Or, like being in the holy place of the tabernacle, but not in the holy of holies.
I know Jesus is God, NO DOUBT! How do I explain that Jesus prays to God? He speaks of Him as Father. And that Jesus Sits at the right hand of God, if they are the same why different seats. I myself explain that just as we are made up of Mind, Body, and Soul so is God we have, Jesus for Body, Holy Spirit as Spirit, God as the Mind. What else can I say, please help:
Jesus prays to God, and speaks of Him as Father, because of His humanity, or His identity with the human race. He has become identified with the people He came to save -- and that without losing any of His Deity. He "emptied Himself," and took upon Himself the nature of the people He came to redeem (Phil 2:5-8; Heb 2:10-11). In order to be identified with us and represent us, He had to live like us, in reliance upon the Father.
Avoid trying to explain such things philosophically. It will not satisfy your heart. Rather, consider that God requires a Man to intercede for men. That is why "There is one Mediator between God and man, the Man Christ Jesus" (1 Tim 2:5).
Prior to becoming a man, Jesus did not pray to God or call him "Father." Then, He was "in the form of God" (Phil 2:6), and "was God" (John 1:1). When He took upon Himself the form of a servant, He put His Divinity in a sheathe, like a sword. He did not lose it, but chose to represent us as a Man. That is what it took to save us.
In studying the Shunnamite Woman....Was it culture that keeps her at arms length from Elisha? She is found to speak thru Gehazi the slave in most of scripture and Elisha as well does not speak directly to her. I can only guess that being a Holy man...she did not approach him face to face but I cant find anything on the culture of that time to lead me either way.
First, our introduction to this woman confirms she was a "great," or prominent woman. Seeing the prophet Elisha pass by her home., she personally constrained him to come in and eat bread in her home (2 Kings 4:8). Although she was married, she personally urged to eat in her home. She did not make the request of Gehazi. Later, when she perceived Elisha was a "holy man of God." she told her husband she felt they should make a special room for him with a bed, table, chair, and lamp stand (2 Kings 4:10).
Second, when Elisha had spent some time in this special room, he told Gehazi to call for the Shunammite woman. He did call for her, and she came and stood before the prophet Elisha. At that time, Elisha did hold a dialog with the woman through Gehazi his servant (2 Kings 4:10-14). Later, however, when Elisha promised she would have a son, he spoke directly to her as she stood before him. The woman also replied personally to him (2 Kings 4:15-16).
Third, following the death of her son, and when meeting the prophet again, she took hold of his feet. When the servant Gehazi sought to push her away, Elisha told him to let her alone, for the Lord had hidden what was troubling her from him. The woman then reasoned with the prophet concerning the death of her son (2 Kings 4:25-28). After elisha had raised her son from the dead, he told Gehazi to call the woman into the room where he remained with the raised boy. When she came into the room, Elisha told her to pick up the boy. The woman fell down at his feet, bowing to the ground, then arose and picked up her restored son.
Therefore, I do not see this woman as standing back from the prophet Elisha. On the occasion when Elisha spoke to her through Gehazi.
When you say "Israel were sons collectively", do you mean that Israel is saved "en masse" and not on an individual basis?
Israel is collectively called "son," NOT "sons (Ex 4:22-23; Hos 11:1). The people were collectively called God's children, not on an individual basis (Deut 14:1). That status is NOT the same as being "saved" as declared in Christ Jesus. As a nation they were begotten and delivered by God, but none of them were "born again" as those who are in Christ Jesus. Such salvation did not exist prior to Christ's exaltation. This is a salvation in Christ Jesus that comes "with eternal glory" (2 Tim 2:10) -- something that was not even mentioned under the Law, much less promised. In Jesus, God begets us to a living hope "BY the resurrection of Jesus Christ" (1 Pet 1:3). That is something altogether new. There could be no such begetting in the redemptive sense prior to the resurrection of Christ Jesus. The Prophets spoke of this salvation, even inquiring and searching diligently concerning its truth. They were prophesying "of the grace that should come" to those in Christ Jesus (1 Pet 1:10). That salvation was related to the sufferings and glory of Christ. God even revealed to the prophets that their message "was not unto themselves" (1 Pet 1:12).
This condition is precisely why Jesus said the following of John the Baptist. "Assuredly, I say to you, among those born of women there has not risen one greater than John the Baptist; but he who is least in the kingdom of heaven is greater than he" (Matt 11:11). It is certainly not that the greatness of the "least in the kingdom" is found in a person-to-person comparison to John the Baptist. It is what we have become in Christ that accounts for a "greater" condition. You might say John was a giant standing in a valley, while those in Christ are like midgets standing on a mountain.
As you well point out, those prior to Christ who were accepted by God had faith. Their faith in God, however, while of the same order as those who believe on the Son, was vastly inferior to it. Through it, they obtained a "good report" while they sojourned in this world -- but they did NOT receive the promised salvation until after Jesus took sin away and was exalted to the right hand of God (Heb 11:39; 9:15).
If Jesus had not come, removing the barrier of sin, destroying the devil, spoiling principalities and powers, and removing the handwriting of ordinances that was against us, no one would have been saved -- eternal life would never have been realized by anyone.
Faith had nothing whatsoever to do with the Old Covenant. Faith was strictly on an individual basis, and was not a covenantal issue. This is specifically stated in Galatians 3:12: "The law is not based on faith; on the contrary, 'The man who does these things will live by them.'" The Law did not require men to believe, but to "DO." There was no commandment under the Law to believe. The entire matter of life was placed in the hands of man, and was based upon strict conformity to the Law in every sense, and at all times.
If you do not have a proper understanding of the distinction between the Old and New covenants, you must set yourself to obtain it. The New Covenant is precisely that -- "new." It bears no resemblance to the Old Covenant, and is said to be "not according" to that covenant (Jer 31:31-34; Heb 8:8-13). It is a different kind of covenant -- of another order.
Faith has always been recognized by God, whether before the Law in Abel, Enoch, or Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, Joseph, and Job, or after the Law in Moses, David, and the Holy Prophets. That faith, however, rested in the promise of a coming Seed, and that is precisely why it was honored by God. However, it depended upon the coming of that Seed.
We give honor to, and receive, believers who lived prior to Christ's redemption. But they "received not the promise," and could not be "made perfect apart from us" (Heb 11:39). That is a matter of record.
There is such an abundance of revelation on this in the Apostles' doctrine that I am alarmed by the kind of dialog that is going on over this issue. It is a fundamental issue, specifically addressed in Scripture. It is the business of every believer to know what the Scriptures say about a matter before they engage in endless discussions about it. Such discussions bring no honor to Christ, tend toward confusion, and provoke all manner of foolish talking.
Wasn't the reason Joseph had his bones interred in the promised land because God had promised the land, not because there was anything special about having them buried? In other words, his decision was based on the promise of God, not on an intrinsically valuable form of disposal.
That is precisely correct. And the burial of the body is done in hope of the resurrection, as depicted in 1 Corinthians 15:42-45. I suppose that one could imagine cremation as the "sowing" of the body, but to me it requires a fanciful imagination to do so. This is not, as some have well pointed out, a matter of salvation -- at least it is not so represented in God's Word. It does, however, serve as an occasion when" the thoughts of many hearts" are revealed.
I do not know what the philosophical language "an intrinsically valuable form of disposal" means to you. But whatever it means, we are told our bodies "are the members of Christ" (1 Cor 6:15), and will thus be redeemed (Rom 8:23). If you are suggesting that such a marvelous hope is reflected in the act of cremation, I disagree with you. I believe Joseph would have disagreed with you, as well as Abraham, those who buried John the Baptist, and those who buried Stephen. But, that is, I admit, my opinion, and I am willing to leave it at that.
I have spent time responding to this issue because of the seeming confidence that was evinced by those upholding cremation, while speaking accommodatingly to those who have no heart for it. I do not believe their position can be supported by any form of spiritual reasoning, whether it be Scriptural precedence or inference. It is groundless human opinion, and ought to be so acknowledged. There is not a syllable of Scripture that would lead an honest and good heart to justify the cremation of the body.
I've been debating in my head for quite a while to ask you about a certain paragraph in one of your daily articles. It is the one mentioned in the subject line - the progressive nature of God's Kingdom for Oct 15, 2001. The thought had occurred to me that it is possible that the thrust of the Kingdom parables at that point is pointing out how there is evil amongst those people in the Kingdom. Yes, I agree that it does show too that the Kingdom is progressing -- in numbers perhaps -- the mustard tree, as you pointed out seems to show that, but I'm not so sure that the leaven parable is expressing that. My reason for believing that is because it seems strange to me that Jesus would use "leaven" to express anything good - like the gospel, or His church or the Kingdom as a whole. I can only find one time in all the Scriptures (Lev 23:17), that the inference of it is benign, or not negative (Amos 4:5 may seem okay - but I think it is sarcastic to make a point of their sin). Otherwise leaven is always used as an example of sin or evil.
In His matchless parables Jesus revealed the manner of increase and expansion that characterizes His Kingdom. "Whereunto shall we liken the kingdom of God? or with what comparison shall we compare it? It is like a grain of mustard seed, which, when it is sown in the earth, is less than all the seeds that be in the earth: But when it is sown, IT GROWETH UP, AND BECOMETH GREATER THAN ALL HERBS, and shooteth out great branches; so that the fowls of the air may lodge under the shadow of it" (Mark 4:30-32). "The kingdom of heaven is like unto leaven, which a woman took, and hid in three measures of meal, TILL THE WHOLE WAS LEAVENED" (Matt 13:33).
Of course with this argument the question arises, is the whole Kingdom bad now since "a little yeast leavens the whole". Well, I do have an opinion about that if you want to dialogue about this. I am sure this is an old argument and you've discussed this with others, but I'm not old and I am learning, so I'm open to discussion. Teach me.
Remember, "the kingdom of God" and "the kingdom of heaven" are not generic terms. Nor, indeed, are they ever applied to the workings of men. They depict the working of God, and its absolute triumph over all opponents and contrary influences. They have to do with what God is doing, not what men are doing. God's Kingdom will eventually swallow up all other kingdoms, decimating all opposition (Dan 2:34-45; Rev 11:15). That is the sense in which it is like a mustard tree.
When speaking the parable on the leaven, Jesus did not say, "corrupt religion is like leaven." He said "the kingdom of heaven is like unto leaven." He was speaking of the ultimate dominance of His kingdom, not of the introduction of corruption. The triad of parables that He gave on this subject all confirmed that to be true. In the parable of the tares of the field, they were all ultimately removed from His field. The parable of the mustard seed confirmed the kingdom began small, but finally outstripped everything else. The parable of the leaven shows the kingdom advances secretly, yet will finally dominate all, when God gathers everything together into one, both in heaven and in earth (Eph 1:10).
When Scripture uses leaven in a corrupting sense, it is very precise about it: "the leaven of the Pharisees and Sadducees" (Matt 16:6), and "the leaven of malice and wickedness" (1 Cor 5:8). That does not mean all references to leaven denote corruption or wickedness. As you mentioned, there are references to leaven that were not negative." More than that, they were commandments of the Lord referring to offerings made to Him -- something that would be absurd if leaven were a consistent reference to evil. Wave offerings were made "with leaven" (Lev 23:17-18). Sacrifices of thanksgiving were offered "with leaven" (Amos 4:5).
God's kingdom is never "bad," "evil," or "corrupt." Such ideas spring from the notion that the visible church is the kingdom. The point in every parable about the kingdom that introduces the idea of corruption, is that corruption will be eliminated, not that it pervades the rule of heaven or the rule of God. Such a thought contradicts the concept of God, portraying Him as no God at all, and suggesting what He begins is eventually defiled and corrupted. That, of course, is not the message of the Lord at all. Rather, it is that God finishes what He begins, bringing it to a conclusion in which evil is once and for all overthrown. No parable or teaching of Scripture leaves the Kingdom of God in shambles, a condition of corruption, or a state of demise. It is always pictured as ultimately triumphant -- which is exactly the point of the parables of the leaven and mustard seed.
Why do you interpret the Bible literally and to all extremes?
I am not sure what you mean by, "and to all extremes." The Bible is to be believed. The point is not interpreting the Bible, but understanding it -- and that comes through faith (Heb 11:3). There is an overall message in the Bible -- a sort of theme that runs throughout all of it. From the standpoint of pointing to an Individual, Jesus said the Scriptures spoke of Him (John 5:39). In this sense, Jesus is "the spirit," of life, of prophecy, or inspired declarations (Rev 19:10). From the view of what it says about Jesus, it is summarized as "the sufferings of Christ, and the glory that should follow" (1 Peter 1:11). From another point of view, the Bible is opening up to men the purpose of God -- what He is doing, and why He is doing it (Eph 1:11; 3:11; 2 Tim 1:9). From yet another vantage point, the Scriptures have been written to make people of God perfect, completely furnished to do every good work (2 Tim 3:16-17).
The Bible is understood within the framework of these verities. Sometimes the Bible speaks of historical realities in which God was prominent, and His will executed -- as in the deliverance of Israel, the Babylonian captivity, the repentance of Nineveh, and the travels and experiences of Paul. Other times, Jesus likened the Kingdom of God to things in this world -- a net for catching fish, a man looking for a treasure, a mustard tree growing from a small seed into something large, and other parables. There are also visions that revealed certain aspects of God's rule, like Nebuchadnezzar's vision of a small stone becoming a mountain that filled the whole earth, Joseph's dream of seven lean cattle eating up seven fat ones, Ezekiel's vision of the valley of dry bones, and Peter's vision of a net being let down from heaven with all kinds of unclean animals in it. Sometimes the Bible speaks of personalities in regard to their character, likening them to animals and beasts of the earth. It refers to Satan as a dragon, Jesus as a Lamb, the saints as a city, and false religion as a harlot. Earthly kingdoms are called beasts, certain kings were called mountains.
You are not using the word "literally" correctly. All of the Bible is to be taken "literally," or as meaning precisely what God intended. Sometimes the literal meaning of a passage is what lies beneath the surface - like Satan being "the old serpent," false teachers being "dogs," and the people of God "the sheep of His pasture."
The best procedure to follow when you are not sure of the meaning of Scripture is to ask the Lord for understanding. That is what men of God did in the Bible (Psa 119:34,73,125,144,169). It is also what Apostles prayed for people -- that God open the eyes of their understanding (Eph 1:15-20; 3:15-20).
What is your stance on evolution vs. what the bible says about creation?
Since God created the world, we
ought to take His Word on how it came into existence. Evolution does not require a God. It depends upon chance, and rejects a powerful and wise Creator. The difficulty with it is that the world is so precise in its order, and so consistent in its massive arrangement, that men cannot even set their clocks precisely enough. They must have an occasional leap year to make up for the time they lost. If evolution is true, then chaos has produced order, and precision has sprang out of confusion. That would be something like an explosion in a print factory that caused the World Book Encyclopedia to fall out of the air with every page printed perfectly, every book bound precisely, and all boxed up and ready for shipment. But even that is far too small to compare with our massive universe.
Evolution is not true, and thus it cannot be proved. The only way the evolutionist can make his case is to create millions, and even billions, of years of time in which gradual change could take place. It is pure fable, and much more difficult to receive than the God of heaven creating it precisely as he said. And if that cannot be believed, how can anything God has said be believed?
What is the office of Evangelist?
To be more precise, an "evangelist" is not an office, but a person -- just like an Apostle, prophet, teacher, elder, or deacon. An evangelist is an evangel, or proclaimed. He is one who announces or declares a message -- particularly the Gospel, together with its implications. Such a person is gifted by God to bring the message of Christ home to the hearts of people, moving them to react to that message. In our society, an evangelist would be similar to a reporter.
How many of their own laws did the Pharisees break to crucify Jesus Christ? Do you know which laws they broke?
If you are speaking of the traditions the Pharisees, Scribes, lawyers, etc., concocted, I have no extensive knowledge on that subject. I do not doubt that they did, in fact, violate many of their own traditions, for sin causes people to be inconsistent. The Sanhedrin was the legal branch of Judaism in those days -- something like our supreme court. In order for a man to be convicted, they required three things. 1. A public trial, 2. An opportunity to present a defense, and 3. A conviction confirmed by at least two or three witnesses. All three of these were conveniently ignored in the matter of
Jesus' trial and death, I also understand they were not to convene at night.
John MacArthur writes this. "The Sanhedrin also followed some important laws. Any false witness would pay the same penalty as the one he witnessed against. They could not prosecute the accused; they could only try him. No court could convene at night or in any other place except the Judgment Hall. No hearing could convene in the late afternoon, lest justice be hurried to a hasty and wrongful conclusion. No convicted criminal could be executed the same day he was tried. A one-day interval was required. No execution could be held on a feast day, or the day before. All the votes were carefully counted. And no one could incriminate himself by giving testimony against himself."
As for the Law of God, they ignored it in their determination to have Jesus put to death. They tried to avoid having Him put to death on a feast day, but that was because they feared the people (Matt 26:3-5).
1. They did not have two witnesses against Jesus (Deut 17:6).
2. The witnesses were to be the first to put their hand on the accused, to kill him (Deut 17:7).
3. They suborned false witnesses, rewarding those the Law required to be punished precisely in the manner in they had thought to do to the one they accused (Deut 19:15-19).
There are no doubt some other violations. I have not spent a lot of time on this subject.
How do I acknowledge the lord so that he can direct my steps?
The passage touching upon this subject is Proverbs 3:5-6. "Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge." The Proverbs include forms of Jewish poetry, which made a statement two different ways -- called a Hebraism. In this passage, the same reality is stated two different ways. Trusting in the Lord with all of our heart, and leaning not to our own understanding is the same thing as acknowledging Him in all of our ways.
Acknowledging the Lord in your ways includes not depending upon your own wisdom -- not launching out on your own without any regard to the will of God. Acknowledging Him is viewing what you are doing with a mind to please Him -- seeking His approval in what You do, and exercising yourself to avoid His displeasure. From another view, it is living by faith (Heb 10:38) or walking in the Spirit (Gal 5:16,25).
if you live in a conscientious effort to please the Lord, and to fulfill His as fully as you can see it, He WILL direct your paths. In the process of your life, through your understanding, trough your sensitivity, with inward promptings by the Holy Spirit, and strong inclinations, He will point you in the right direction. All of this, of course, must be believed. It is not something that can be confirmed by feelings.
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