Scripture Reading: Psalms 69
During the month of April, we examined some of the different ways we can see the Lord Jesus in the Old Testament. When certain Greeks asked Philip, “Sir, we would see Jesus,” they had no clue what all was truly involved in seeing Him. Part of our study had to do with Biblical types, Scriptural illustrations of deep spiritual truths. Then we entered into the study of select prophesies of Jesus found in Old Testament writings. Beloved, there are many prophesies of our Lord recorded from the Book of Genesis all the way through the Book of Malachi, many more than we could adequately deal with in this devotional book. We will, however, continue our look into Old Testament prophesies of the Lord Jesus Christ.
There are some very familiar phrases found in the New Testament, phrases such as, “thus it is written by the prophet,” and “as it is written.” You will also find statements that go something like this, “that it might be fulfilled which was spoken of the Lord by the prophet....” Many such prophesies can be found in the Book of Psalms which find their fulfillment in the New Testament. For the next few days in our devotions, we will be noticing just some of those prophetic Psalms.”
Psalms 69 is a Messianic Psalm, filled with prophecies of the coming Messiah, the Lord Jesus Christ. Let’s notice prophetic references that are found in this great Psalm that are referred to in New Testament writings.
Psalms 69:4 “They that hate me without a cause are more than the hairs of mine head: they that would destroy me, being mine enemies wrongfully, are mighty: then I restored that which I took not away.”
Compare this with John 15:25 “But this cometh to pass, that the word might be fulfilled that is written in their law, They hated me without a cause.”
This prophecy was fulfilled throughout the life of the Lord Jesus Christ during the days of His earthly ministry, beginning even at His birth. For what cause was Herod’s hatred demonstrated toward the Lord when he ordered that all the young boys two years old and younger were to be slain? Beginning there, and continuing up until the time of His official rejection and subsequent crucifixion, they that hated Him did so without a cause. Notice the prophecy said, “They that hate me without a cause are more than the hairs of mine head.” That was not an exaggeration. Jesus is still hated “without a cause” to this very day. Some people simply do not believe in Him, but others are filled with vehement hatred for the Messiah, the Son of God. That has never changed, and the prophecy is still seeing fulfillment to this very day.
Let’s look at the next Messianic prophecy in Psalms 69.
Psalms 69:9 “For the zeal of thine house hath eaten me up; and the reproaches of them that reproached thee are fallen upon me.”
Compare this with John 2:17 “And his disciples remembered that it was written, The zeal of thine house hath eaten me up.”.
Also note Romans 15:2 “For even Christ pleased not himself; but, as it is written, The reproaches of them that reproached thee fell on me.”
When the Lord Jesus saw the defilement of the Temple by the money changers, the turning of His Father’s house into a house of merchandise, He was infuriated. He chased the money changers out of the House of God and cleansed it from their filth. When this happened, the apostles remembered the prophecy of Psalms 69:9, a Messianic prophecy that saw fulfillment literally in the Person of the Lord Jesus Christ. O, beloved, this should strengthen our faith in the Blessed Word of God!
Another Messianic prophecy in this great Psalm is found in the following verse:
Psalms 69:21 “They gave me also gall for my meat; and inmy thirst they gave me vinegar to drink.”
Compare this to Matthew 27:34 “They gave him vinegar to drink mingled with fall: and when he had tasted thereof, he would not drink.” and also John 18:28-29 “After this, Jesus knowing that all things were now accomplished, that the scripture might be fulfilled, saith, I thirst. Now there was set a vessel full of vinegar: and they filled a spunge with vinegar, and put it upon hyssop, and put it to his mouth.”
A thousand years before the incident, the psalmist David saw in prophetic visions our Lord Jesus Christ nailed to the Cross. One of the things, one of the minute details he was given, was the Lord Jesus being offered vinegar to drink by those looking on. Just a quick note; when He was offered vinegar mingled with gall, He refused to drink it after having tasted it. The reason for this is that gall was used as a pain killer, and the Lord Jesus refused it for He was willingly suffering for us that we might be saved. Blessed Redeemer!
Next, let’s examine Psalms 69:22-23 “Let their table become a snare before them; and that which should have been for their welfare, let it become a trap. Let their eyes be darkened, that they see not; and make their loins continually to shake.”
Compare this to Romans 11:9-10 “And David saith, Let their table be made a snare, and a trap, and a stumblingblock, and a recompence unto them: Let their eyes be darkened, that they may not see, and bow down their back alway.”
This, too, is a Messianic prophecy. It deals with the rejection of the Messiah by the majority of the people of His day, especially that of the religious leaders. Remember that judicial blindness was brought upon the majority of the Jews because of their rejection of the Blessed Messiah.
Let’s notice one last Messianic prophecy of Psalms 69.
Psalms 69:25 “Let their habitation be desolte; and let none dwell in their tents.”
Compare this with Acts 1:20 “For it is written in the Book of Psalms, Let his habitation be desolate, and let no man dwell therein: and his bishoprick let another take.”
When the religious leaders rejected the Lord Jesus with such vehement hatred, they sought for a way to apprehend Him when not in the presence of all the people who regularly gathered around Him. Judas Iscariot knew just where that apprehension could take place, so he bargained with the Christ-haters for thirty pieces of silver. This prophecy of Psalms 69 was looking ahead at this wicked deed.
This one Psalm penned by David was filled with Messianic prophecies of the Lord Jesus. When the Gentiles inquired of Philip, “Sir, we would see Jesus,” they needed only to examine this blessed prophetic Psalm to see more clearly the dear Son of God. Thank God for those blessed glimpses of Him in the pages of God’s prophetic Word.
Scripture Reading: Psalms 22
In continuing our thoughts on seeing Jesus through the prophesies of the Old Testament, we now turn our attention Psalms 22. This chapter provides one of the most vivid prophesies of the crucifixion of Christ found in all the Word of God. As we did in Psalms 69, we will compare these prophesies with their fulfillment in the New Testament.
Psalms 22:1 “My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me? why art thous so far from helping me, and from the words of my roaring.”
Compare this with Matthew 27:46 “And about the ninth hour Jesus cried with a loud voice, saying, Eli, Eli, lama sabachthani? that is to say My God, my God, why has thou forsaken me?”
This prophecy that was written a thousand years before it’s literal fulfillment foretold the fact that the Lord Jesus suffered alone in order to provide our eternal redemption. The Father had to forsake the Son when He became sin for us Who knew no sin, for He cannot look upon sin. O, the extreme loneliness endured by the Son of God, the extreme suffering He experience so that He could in turn say to us, “I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee.” (Hebrews 13:5)
See Psalms 22:7-8 “All they that see me laugh me to scorn: they shoot out the lip, they shake the head, saying, He trusted on the LORD that he would deliver him: lete him deliver him, seeing he delighted in him.”
Compare this with Matthew 27:39,43 “And they that passed by reviled him, wagging their heads....” “He trusted in God; let him deliver him now, if he will have him: for he said, I am the Son of God.”
What an amazing prophecy! This is the marvel of Scriptural prophecy. The Psalmist David wrote this under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit. He never experienced anything like this personally, nor did he know anyone who had experienced such. This revelation came to him concerning One he had never seen, One Who, although a descendant, would be his Redeemer. The Lord Jesus suffered such rejection, even in His most extreme suffering there was little or no sympathy at all from the majority of those observing his death on Calvary.
See Psalms 22:18 “They parted my garments among them, and cast lots upon my vesture.”
Compare this with Matthew 27:35 “And they crucified him, and parted his garments, casting lots: that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by the prophet, They parted my garments among them, and upon my vesture did they cast lots.”
What a detailed prophetic account is here given, some one thousand years before fulfillment! One of the things we forget concerning Christ’s sufferings on the Cross is the shame that was involved. “And they crucified him, and parted his garments....” What shame our Lord endured on the Cross! What shame endured by the very God that created all things, and that sustains all things by the Word of His power! What love compelled Him to endure this shameful treatment!
See Psalms 22:22 “I will declare thy name unto my brethren: in the midst of the congregation will I praise thee.”
Compare this with Hebrews 2:11-12 “For both he that sanctifieth and thy who are sanctified are all of one: for which cause he is not ashamed to call them brethren, Saying I will declare thy name unto my brethren, in the midst of the church will I sing praise unto thee.”
We have only pointed out four passages out of this great chapter to show the detailed prophesies of the crucifixion of our Lord. Honestly, every verse points to Calvary! Any earnest, seeking heart, longing to know the truth, could see Jesus Christ through the prophetic lens in Psalms 22. Once Jesus told His adversaries, “Search the scriptures; for in them ye think ye have eternal life: and they are thy which testify of me.” (John 5:39) Psalms 22 certainly testified of Him. Thank God for this matchless testimony!
Scripture Reading: Psalms 40; Hebrews 10:5-10
To truly see the Lord Jesus, one must see Him as the great Sacrifice for sins, the “Lamb of God” which takes away the sins of the world. In Psalms 40, there are several references to that glorious Sacrificial Lamb. Notice Verse 12, “For innumberable evils have compassed me about: mine iniquities have taken hold upon me, so that I am not able to look up; they are more than the hairs of mine head: therefore my heart faileth me.” You might read this and think, “This could not be a prophecy of Christ, for He was the perfect, sinless Lamb.” Yes, that is true, but remember, “For he hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him.” (2 Corinthians 5:21) Isaiah saw this, as is recorded in Chapter 53, Verse 6, “...and the Lord hath laid on him the iniquity of us all.” So, as you can see beloved, our sins that were laid upon Him were innumberable, more than the hairs of His glorious head. Truly for our sins, He became “poor and needy.” Blessed Redeemer!
Note carefully the prophecy given in Verses 6-7, “Sacrifice and offering thou didst not desire; mine ears hast thou opened: burnt offering and sin offering hast thou not required. Then said I, Lo, I come: in the volume of the book it is written of me, I delight to do thy will, O my God: yea, thy law is within my heart.” Compare this with Paul’s writings in Hebrews 10:5-10. Here, Paul notes that the prophecy penned by David a thousand years before the birth of our Savior was fulfilled in Him. Note the words, “Lo, I come to do thy will, O God.” In John 6:38, the Lord Jesus said, “For I came down from heaven, not to do mine own will, but the will of him that sent me.” Then, in Verse 40 we find the following words, “And this is the will of him that sent me, that every one which seeth the Son, and believeth on him, may have everlasting life: and I will raise him up at the last day.”
“Let all those that seek thee rejoice and be glad in thee: let such as love thy salvation say continually, The Lord be magnified.” Truly this should be the response of all who have placed trust in the Lord Jesus, who have experienced first hand His gracious salvation, for that salvation was made possible through His willingly offering Himself for our sins. No animal sacrifice or offering could atone for sins, just as no good work or deed could declare anyone right with God.
“Lo, I come: in the volume of the book it is written of me.” What book would that be? Of course, we know that the “Book” is the Bible, the Holy Word of God. It is the story of the Redeemer and all that He did that we might be redeemed back to God. Remember, the theme of our devotional thoughts come from the request by certain Greeks that inquired of Philip, “Sir, we would see Jesus.” That is only possible when the “Book” is read and believed. Let’s ever search that blessed Book for greater insight into the Person and Word of our Wonderful Lord!
Scripture Reading: Psalms 41:9; John 13:18
The story of Judas Iscariot is a perplexing one. He was chosen by our Lord to be numbered with the apostles, but he was an unsaved man. The Lord knew this from the beginning. He said, “Have not I chosen you twelve, and one of you is a devil?” (John 6:70) Jesus, therefore, knew that Judas was an unsaved man, and not just an unsaved man, but one who was given over to the whims of the adversary. He was, however, a friend to the Lord. You will recall that when Judas led the Temple guards to the Garden of Gethsemane to apprehend Jesus, our Lord said to him, “Friend, wherefore art thou come?” He had betrayed the Lord with a feigned kiss of friendship, but Judas was no friend of the Savior.
Judas was seen in prophetic vision, as recorded in Psalms 41:9, “Yea, mine own familiar friend, in whom I trusted, which did eat of my bread, hath lifted up his heel against me.” Judas was trusted. In fact, John informed us that Judas was the treasurer of the evangelistic team that followed Jesus. When the incident happened when Mary anointed Jesus was the “precious ointment,” it was Judas who was infuriated, saying that the ointment could have been sold and given to the poor. John noted, “This he said, not that he cared for the poor; but because he was a thief, and had the bag, and bare what was put therein.” (John 12:6) Earlier, we examined the women that traveled with the Lord and ministered to Him of their substance. How much of this do you suppose Judas slipped from the “bag” for his own use?
The man that had been seen through the prophetic vision did just exactly as the prophecy specified. Jesus informed His disciples that one of His followers would betray Him on the same night He instituted the Lord’s Supper. “And as they did eat, he said, Verily I say unto you, that one of you shall betray me. And they were exceeding sorrowful, and began every one of them to say, Lord is it I?” (Matthew 26:21-22) None of the other disciples suspected that it was Judas that would betray the Lord. In fact, they each suspected themselves rather than him. The Lord answered, “He that dippeth his hand with me in the dish, the same shall betray me.” Then He added, “The Son of man goeth as it is written of him: but woe unto that man by whom the Son of man is betrayed! it had been good for that man if he had not been born.” (Matthew 26:22-25)
When Judas betrayed the Lord, he had specified that when he had led the men to the place where Jesus could be found in the absence of the crowd, he would identify Him by placing upon His cheek the kiss of friendship. Judas betrayed the Lord with a kiss. Think about this; he kissed the very Door of Heaven, the Lord Jesus Christ, and then went to hell the next day. He had walked with the Lord through His earthly ministry, had heard His gracious words and had beheld His acts of power and majesty, but he was not a saved man. O, what a horrible thought!
Yes, the story of Judas Iscariot is a strange one, but it has been repeated countless times over since that day. Many that have claimed to be His representatives and friends have sold Him out for less than thirty pieces of silver. May our Lord ever help us to be true and faithful, and may He help us to never betray our Lord or His cause for mere physical reward! Amen!
Scripture Reading: Psalms 45:6-7; Hebrews 1:8-9
We have examined prophesies of the Lord Jesus concerning His condescension, His sufferings and crucifixion, and in this passage we find a prophecy of His coming kingdom. Much more could be said concerning this glorious coming kingdom, but we will confine ourselves to the passages at hand.
That the prophecy in Psalms 45 is one of the Lord Jesus Christ is proven by the reference found in Hebrews 1, Verses 8-9. Let’s begin there. The entire chapter, actually the entire Book of Hebrews, is an exaltation of the Lord Jesus, revealing His supremacy. Notice how the chapter begins; “God...hath in these last days spoken unto us by his Son, whom he hath appointed heir of all things, by whom also he made the worlds....” From the beginning we see the exaltation of the “Son,” pointing out that He is superior to the prophets. Next, we see Him exalted above the angelic beings. No angel was addressed as follows, “...Thou art my Son, this day have I begotten thee....” Nor could it be said of any angel, “I will be to him a Father, and he shall be to me a Son.”
“But unto the Son he saith, Thy throne, O God, is for ever and ever....” The “Son” is referred to by the Father as “God.” We certainly believe in the Triune Godhead, and this verse is just another proof of the Deity of Jesus Christ. This is not the only passage in Scripture where the Lord Jesus is referred to as “God.” Think about the prophetic revelation given by Isaiah, “For unto us a child is born unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, the mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace.” (Isaiah 9:6-7) “The mighty God,” that is easily understood. This is just one of many references proving that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, very God in the flesh. (See 1 Timothy 3:16)
You should also note the reference in Isaiah’s prophecy of the “government” and “kingdom” of Jesus Christ. It is this kingdom, this coming literal kingdom on earth of the Lord Jesus, that the Psalmist was speaking of in Chapter 45, to which Paul made reference in Hebrews 1 when proving the superiority of our Lord over the angelic beings.
Now, as to the prophecy. It was prophesied that Christ’s kingdom would be “for ever and ever,” which should be compared to the prophecy given to David in 2 Samuel 7:13. This could be said of no other earthly king. Next, we find something of the character of His coming kingdom when we read, “the sceptre (representing governmental authority) of thy kingdom is a right sceptre. Thou lovest righteousness, and hatest iniquity....” That certainly could not be said of any other earthly kingdom. Unfortunately, this is actually the exact opposite of the world’s kingdoms and governments, including our own.
I certainly do love our country and thank God for being able to be a citizen here. But all know of the corruption that is evident in our governmental officials and systems. Thank God there is coming a day when the Lord Jesus will set up His glorious kingdom upon this earth, a kingdom that will be known for its righteousness and justice. When we read such things as this, we join with the Apostle John and cry out, “Even so, come, Lord Jesus.” (Revelation 22:20)
Scripture Reading: Psalms 68:18; Ephesians 4:7-10
Remember, we are examining how the Bible would answer the question that was presented by the Greeks to Philip, “Sir, we would see Jesus.” In order to truly “see Jesus,” we must look to the Word of God, and we are currently looking at prophecies given in the Book of Psalms concerning our Savior.
Psalms 68:18 is an intriguing prophecy, and would have been impossible to completely understand without the added light of Ephesians 4:7-10. For instance, in Psalms 68 we read the following, “Thou hast ascended on high, thou has led captivity captive....” One would feel like the Ethiopian when asking the question concerning Isaiah 53, “...I pray thee, of whom speaketh the prophet this? of himself, or of some other man?” Who was the Psalmist speaking of in this prophecy? According to New Testament revelation, he was prophesying of the Lord Jesus. Paul wrote, “...When he (Christ, see Verse 7) ascended up on high....” As Christians, we certainly believe in the resurrection and ascension of Jesus Christ. (See Acts 1:6-11) Paul informs us that, before the ascension took place, there was first a “descending,” and that “into the lower parts of the earth.” From there, it is said that He “led captivity captive.” Here, there needs to be some additional studies done to understand what is being said.
Prior to the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ, the departed dead were not allowed to enter into the presence of God in heaven because of sin. Rather, those who died in faith were carried to the place called “paradise.” Jesus explained this in the Gospel of Luke, Chapter 16, when speaking of the deaths of the rich man and of Lazarus. They both were carried to the place of the departed dead, the rich man being in the place of torment and Lazarus being in Abraham’s bosom. According to Christ”s teachings in Luke’s Gospel, there was a great gulf fixed between the place of torment and the place of comfort and rest. After the death of Jesus Christ and before his resurrection, according to Ephesians 4, Jesus entered into that place of comfort to liberate those who were held there to make it possible for them to enter into the presence of God in heaven. This is what Paul was referring to when he wrote of Jesus leading “captivity captive.“ After the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ, it has been possible for those who die in faith to be carried directly into heaven to be with the Lord. Paul said it this way in 2 Corinthians 5:8 “...to be absent from the body, and to be present with the Lord.” There is now no need for “paradise,” for the perfect sacrifice for sin was offered, and now the redeemed can be carried directly to heaven upon death.
The Psalmist David foresaw this blessed event in prophetic vision. From the death of righteous Abel until the Crucifixion of Christ, paradise held the faithful dead captive. Jesus changed that forever when He “lead captivity captive.” Now, beloved, when God’s people close their eyes in death, they find themselves immediately in the presence of the One Who died and rose again.
All have lost loved ones to the grave. None are exempt. However, because of our blessed Savior, we know that those who die as believers are with the Lord. What a comforting, hope filled thought. praise God for the hope we have in Jesus Christ.
Scripture Reading: Psalms 78:2; Matthew 13:34-35
Detailed prophesies were given concerning the life, ministry and chief purpose of the Lord Jesus. Even the method of His teaching was prophesied. Asaph was given the following prophecy, “I will open my mouth in a parable: I will utter dark sayings of old....” Matthew pointed out that this was indeed a prophecy of the Messiah.
Jesus taught deep spiritual truths in the simple language of common day experiences and events; such as sowing and reaping, and workers and wages. These parables were given to where the common people could understand, while the hypocritical religious leaders stumbled at those truths presented in parabolic form.
God’s Word is not a deeply mystical book intended to be understood only by a select few. Lynn’s Grandmother Bessie was not a theologian with years of seminary training, but her understanding of Scripture was advanced. She read it, prayed and sought God’s face for wisdom and simply believed the Bible for what it said. I spent much time with Bessie discussing the Bible, with her asking me questions that would stimulate my thought and interest in a deeper understanding of God’s Word. Her insight into the Scriptures and her stirring of my heart to know more about God‘s Word still benefit me today.
The teaching of the Lord Jesus was so designed that even a child can understand His message. His use of parables was part of that method enabling His listeners to understand the deep spiritual truths He was imparting to them. One of the best examples of this parabolic method is found in the parables of the seed and the sewer found in Matthew 13. Undoubtedly, all who heard Him teach these truths were familiar with the scenes that He described in these parables. Admittedly, there were some deep spiritual truths in these parables that He explained in greater detail to His disciples in private, but the basic truths were simple enough that even a child could have understood.
His use of parables in his teachings reveal the very heart of the son of God toward those to whom he was speaking, and to all who would come in contact with his word throughout all ages. His blessed truths we’re not veiled in order to hide their deeper meanings, that were presented in such a way that his desire to reach the masses is evident. When Jesus was speaking to Nicodemus in John three, he gave that great truth that is revealed in verse 16; “For God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten son that whosoever believers in him should not perish but have everlasting life.” God’s desire is that men and women, and boys and girls that hear his word understand and know His great longing to have a personal relationship with them through his son the Lord Jesus Christ. For this reason, the Bible is presented in simple words in order that all might have an understanding and come to know Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord.
When those men came to Philip asking for him to allow them to see Jesus, they would have seen and heard white for all intents and purposes would have been an ordinary man using ordinary words to reveal extraordinary truths. The message of The Lord Jesus Christ is a simple message filled with profound truths. Oh that people might hear his blessed message.
Scripture Reading: Psalms 102:25-27; Hebrews 1:10-12
Earnest and honest seeking souls who are endeavoring to know more about the Lord Jesus Christ will surely see His deity proclaimed throughout the Word of God. The revelation given in Psalms 102 is just another example of the exaltation of Christ. Paul referred to this passage in Hebrews 10 where he wrote, "And, thou, Lord, in the beginning hast laid the foundation of the earth; and the heavens are the works of thine hands: they shall perish; but thou remainest; and they all shall wax old as doth a garment; and as a vesture shalt thou fold them up, and they shall be changed: but thou art the same, and thy years shall not fail.”
Consider carefully all that is attributed to the Lord Jesus in this glorious passage. First, to our Lord is attributed the creation of the universe. In Genesis 1:1 we read, In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth.” This is the beginning of God's revelation of Himself to mankind, and we learn that the Savior was He through Whom the act of creation what is accomplished. Compare this to passages such as John 1:1-3; Colossians 1:15-17.
Secondly, this passage exalts the Lord Jesus as the eternal Son of God, Who is unchanging and Whose years shall not fail. He is the same yesterday, today and forever more. This unchanging nature of the son of God gives the believer great assurance and great confidence. Opinions change. Laws change. Governments of the world change, but the Lord our God is unchanging. For that we give him great praise. The Psalmist saw this prophetic image of Christ our Lord, and the Holy Spirit confirmed this through the pen of the Apostle Paul in the Book of Hebrews.
Scripture Reading: Psalms 110:1; Matthew 22:44; Luke 20:42; Acts 2:34; Hebrews 1:13
This entire Psalm is a Messianic Psalm as is clearly seen in New Testament references. It was written by David to be used by the priests in the worship of God, to be sung by the Temple Choir. Every time it was used in worship, the priests were looking ahead to the Sovereign Lord Who would reign supreme in the earth.
Read carefully the references given in the New Testament. In Matthew 22, Pharisees had gathered around the Lord Jesus. He asked them the following question, “What think ye of Christ? Whose son is he?” All were expecting the coming of the promised Christ, the Messiah. They knew immediately the answer to His question; “The Son of David,” was their reply. He then presented them somewhat of a Scriptural riddle, “How then doth David in Spirit call him Lord…?” (Jesus here verified one of the cardinal doctrines of the Christian Church concerning the Word of God; that the Bible was given by Divine Inspiration. See 2 Timothy 3:16) He then proceeded to quote the Old Testament reference He was speaking of; “The Lord said unto my Lord, Sit on my right hand, till I make thine enemies thy footstool.” This would have been referring to the time after the death, burial and resurrection of the Lord Jesus, when He took His place seated at the right hand of the Father in heaven. (See the following, Acts 2:33; 5:31; 7:55-56; Romans 8:34; Ephesians 1:20; Colossians 3:1; Hebrews 1:3,14; 8:1; 10:12; 12:2; 1 Peter 3:22) Therefore this prophecy was looking forward to the resurrection of Christ, the single greatest proof of His Deity. For instance, Paul wrote, “Paul, a servant of Jesus Christ, called to be an apostle, separated unto the gospel of God, (Which he had promised afore by his prophets in the holy scriptures,) Concerning his Son Jesus Christ our Lord, which was made of the seed of David according to the flesh;
And declared to be the Son of God with power, according to the spirit of holiness, by the resurrection from the dead….” (Romans 1:1-4)
Notice carefully the answer Jesus gave when He was informed of the Greeks that wanted to see Him. He said, “The hour is come, that the Son of man should be glorified. Verily, verily, I say unto you, Except a corn of wheat fall into the ground and die, it abideth alone: but if it die, it bringeth forth much fruit.” (John 12:23-24) His answer revealed that the only way to accurately see and understand the Lord Jesus is to do so in light of His death, burial and resurrection.
When Jesus asked the Pharisees the probing question concerning whose Son the Christ would be, He was not testing their Biblical knowledge. He was endeavoring to help them to see Him, and their need of Him. Until Jesus is seen as the Christ, very God Incarnate, there will be no understanding of His earthly ministry, and certainly no understanding of His death on the Cross. May we ever present Him to the lost world around us as the Christ, the Messiah Who alone gives eternal salvation to those who trust in Him.
Scripture Reading: Psalms 110:4; Genesis 14; Hebrews 5:6; 6:13-18; 7:1-28
We are continuing our look at Jesus through the visions of the prophets. Psalm 110:4 is an amazing prophetic vision in which the Psalmist David looked back at a character found in the first book of the Bible and then looked forward to the fulfillment of his antitype, the Lord Jesus Christ.
Little is known about the Old Testament character Melchizedek. His story is found in Genesis 14 where he went out to meet Abraham returning from the battle to free Lot. He was the king of Salem and was “the priest of the most high God. It is interesting to note that God was working among the people of Salem apart from His dealings with Abraham. In other words, God had a work among the Gentiles of that day through Melchizedek. How extensive that work was is uncertain, as is its history or its extent past that particular time.
According to the Apostle Paul, Melchizedek was a type or foreshadowing of the Lord Jesus Christ. Some argue that this “priest of the most high God” was actually a preincarnate appearance of the Lord Jesus, which is a feasible interpretation, but He certainly was a Old Testament type of our Savior. Let’s note Paul’s description of this Old Testament character. “For this Melchisedec, king of Salem, priest of the most high God, who met Abraham returning from the slaughter of the kings, and blessed him; To whom also Abraham gave a tenth part of all; first being by interpretation King of righteousness, and after that also King of Salem, which is, King of peace; Without father, without mother, without descent, having neither beginning of days, nor end of life; but made like unto the Son of God; abideth a priest continually.” The fact that there is nothing stated about his family or of his birth or death makes the priesthood of Melchizedek unique by Old Testament standards. Old Testament priests were of the tribe of Levi, and had a limited priesthood. Priests were constantly changing by reason of age and death. Nothing is stated about Melchizedek’s beginning of days or end of life. In this, his priesthood was a foreshadowing of the priesthood of the Lord Jesus. We know that Jesus did not have His beginning at Bethlehem, but He is the eternal Son of God. Consequently, because He is the eternal Son of God, His priesthood is eternal. The character Melchizedek was an Old Testament illustration of our Great High Priest, the Lord Jesus Christ.
Paul spoke of the greatness of this Old Testament priest noting that Abraham presented to him a tithe of all of the spoils that he had taken in his victorious battle to free Lot. Melchizedek pronounced blessings upon Abraham saying, “Blessed be Abram of the most high God, possessor of heaven and earth; and blessed be the most high God, which hath delivered thine enemies into thy hand.” This scene in Genesis 14 is our last look at Melchizedek in his dealings with Abraham. However, reference is made to this priest throughout the rest of God’s word. The emphasis of these references are the teachings concerning Christ’s priesthood.
Why is this emphasis of such great importance? Christ’s unchanging priesthood is of very much importance. As we look in God‘s Word at the various priests that served in the Tabernacle and later in the Temple , the problems that arose from the ever changing priesthood become clearly evident. There were good priests that loved God, His people and the service they rendered. They took their positions most seriously, counting themselves to be blessed to serve God and His people. Sadly, the Biblical record tells of other priests who were not men of such character. Some were reckoned as “sons of Belial,” who “knew not the Lord.” (See 1 Samuel 2:12) Many of the priests in Jesus’ day were of the same sad character as were the wicked sons of Eli. Because of the ever changing priesthood, there were times in the history of Israel that the common people “abhorrred the offering of the Lord.” (1 Samuel 2:17)
The priesthood of the Lord Jesus is not so. Patterned after that of Melchizedek, His priesthood is unchanging and eternal. Although the Lord Jesus was not of the tribe of Levi, (neither was Melchizedek) He is the Great High Priest of the Most High God, our Blessed Representative seated at the right hand of God the Father on high. There will never be corruption, inconsistency or any other negative aspect of the priesthood of the Lord Jesus Christ. He is a priest forever after the order of Melchizedek. Amen, and praise the Lord.
Scripture Reading: Psalms 118:6, 22-23, 26; Hebrews 13:6; Matthew 21:9,42; 23:39; Mark 11:9; 12:10-11; Luke; 13:35; 19:38; 20:17; John 12:23; Acts 4:11; Ephesians 2:20; 1 Peter 2:7
The Apostle John wrote, “He was in the world, and the world was made by him, and the world knew him not. He came unto his own, and his own received him not. (John 1:10-11) The Gospels are filled with accounts of Jesus being rejected by His own, especially by members of the ruling and religious class of His day. These were the “builders,” those whose responsibility was the building up of Israel’s spirituality. For the most part, these leaders in Israel rejected the Lord Jesus in fulfillment of Old Testament prophesies foretelling such.
“The stone which the builders rejected is become the head stone of the corner.” This was a most significant prophecy. Jesus is the “Rock,” (Matthew 16:18; 1 Corinthians 10:4) the “Stone,” (Daniel 2:34) and the “Foundation” (1 Corinthians 3:11) upon which all of God’s great plan is built. Paul declared, “...other foundation can no man lay than that is laid, which is Jesus Christ.” The religious Jews of Jesus’ day built their system on traditions and the writings of respected men of the past. Consequently they refused Him, turning down the Chief Cornerstone.
People are still rejecting Him today in their efforts to “build” what should be God’s work. All sorts of building materials and foundations are being chosen; such as music, entertainment and passing fads. “Christian churches” are being transformed into coffee bistros and cool gathering places. And some are enjoying great success in the eyes of the world. However, the way in which the world measures success and the way God measures success is vastly different. The religious system of Jesus’ day appeared successful outwardly, but the reality was far different in the eyes of God. It must ever be the goal of the true Church to have all ministries and functions of the work built upon the Lord Jesus Christ for He alone is our foundation, our message and our hope.
My hope is built on nothing less,
Than Jesus’ blood and righteousness.
I dare not trust the sweetest frame,
But wholly lean on Jesus name.
On Christ the Solid Rock I stand,
All other ground is sinking sand.
All other ground is sinking sand.
Although written a thousand years before the time of Christ, David’s prophecy was thoroughly accurate during the days of Christ’s earthly ministry, and is just as applicable in our day. To see Jesus is to see Him Who has been rejected by most, but Who is still the “Head of the Corner” to this very day. May He ever be the foundation upon which we build our lives, our homes and our Church.
Scripture Reading: Luke 24:27
One of the blessed sources to which we can turn to more clearly see Jesus are the visions and writings of the prophets. We spent some time going through the prophesies of our Lord found in the Psalms. Now we will turn our attention to the writings of God’s “seers.” (1Samuel 9:9) The prophets saw glimpses of every aspect and phase of our Lord’s life and ministry. For instance, the prophets saw circumstances surrounding His birth; the fact of the miracle of the virgin birth, the family through which He would come and the very town wherein His life on earth would begin.
The first book found in that section of your Bible know as the “Prophets” is the Book of Isaiah. This “Major Prophet” is filled with prophesies of Jesus. Let’s note some of these amazing prophesies.
First, and this is one of the more familiar prophesies, in Isaiah 7:14 we read, “Therefore the Lord himself shall give you a sign; Behold, a virgin shall conceive, and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel.” The Virgin Birth of the Lord Jesus was clearly prophesied 700 years before His birth. (Actually much before that. See Genesis 3:15.) Then, in Isaiah 9:1-2, we read the following, “Nevertheless the dimness shall not be such as was in her vexation, when at the first he lightly afflicted the land of Zebulun and the land of Naphtali, and afterward did more grievously afflict her by the way of the sea, beyond Jordan, in Galilee of the nations.
The people that walked in darkness have seen a great light: they that dwell in the land of the shadow of death, upon them hath the light shined.” Jesus’ greatest success during the days of His earthly ministry came in the area of Galilee. You will recall that in Galilee there was the feeding of the five thousand with the lad’s meager lunch. And that was just counting the men. There could have been as many as twenty thousand there that day.
Isaiah also informed us that upon beginning His earthly ministry, He would be introduced by another, by a “voice crying in the wilderness.” “The voice of him that crieth in the wilderness, Prepare ye the way of the LORD, make straight in the desert a highway for our God. Every valley shall be exalted, and every mountain and hill shall be made low: and the crooked shall be made straight, and the rough places plain: And the glory of the LORD shall be revealed, and all flesh shall see it together: for the mouth of the LORD hath spoken it.“ (Isaiah 40:1-3)
Isaiah was blessed to see much by way of prophetic vision of the Coming Messiah. Look at the following passages, Isaiah 11:2,10; 26:19; 29:18-19; 50:6; 52:13,14; 53:1-12; 61:1-2. These are amazing prophecies of the Lord Jesus Christ. Now one can understand what Jesus was saying to His adversaries when He said, “Search the scriptures; for in them ye think ye have eternal life: and they are they which testify of me.” (John 5:39)
For inquiring souls to truly “see Jesus” today, they should turn to the prophesies of Jeremiah. In Jeremiah 11:19 we read, “But I was like a lamb or an ox that is brought to the slaughter; and I knew not that they had devised devices against me, saying, Let us destroy the tree with the fruit thereof, and let us cut him off from the land of the living, that his name may be no more remembered.” Here, the prophet saw the rejection of Jesus, a rejection that resulted in His death as the “Lamb of God.” Compare this with John’s introduction of Jesus, “Behold of the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world.” (John 1:29) That Jesus would be a descendant of David was clearly foretold in Jeremiah. See the following passages: 23:5-6; 30:9. Had the religious Jews only believed the Bible that they held as God’s revealed Word, they would have readily recognized the Lord Jesus.
The prophesies of Ezekiel also presented the Lord Jesus. Read carefully Ezekiel 34, then compare this to John 10. The “shepherds” of which the prophet was referring were the political and religious leaders in Israel. God condemned their lack of concern and care for the people, promising to rise up a Shepherd that would love them, guide and guard them as any good shepherd would his sheep. Jesus is the Good Shepherd, the Great Shepherd and the Chief Shepherd of the sheep. (John 10:11,14; Hebrews 13:20; 1 Peter 5:4)
Then there are the prophecies of Daniel, (2:44-45; 7:9-14; 9:24-27) prophesies that are yet to see fulfillment (But they most certainly will). Throughout the “Minor Prophets” we find glorious glimpses of the Lord Jesus Christ. These ever give blessed assurance as to the Person and Work of our Blessed Redeemer.
Scripture Reading: Psalms 40:7; Hebrews 10:5-7
“...in the volume of the book it is written of me....”
Beloved, “...we have not followed cunningly devised fables, when we made known unto you the power and coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, but were eyewitnesses of his majesty.” (2 Peter 1:16) Your faith in Jesus Christ is founded upon blessed truth presented in God’s Word from Genesis to Revelation. Gods Word is such a blessed book, a book upon which we can build our hope for eternity. And this glorious book given by God to man is the volume in which the story of Jesus Christ is clearly revealed. To deny the Scripture’s teaching of the Lord Jesus’ Person and work is simply willful unbelief. (2 Peter 3:5) It is truly a fascinating “volume.”
When the Greeks asked of Phillip to see Jesus, they were making the most important request any mortal could ever make. Man’s quest for knowledge has brought much advancement in our world, some most beneficial, while others are not so. Sadly, in his quest for knowledge, many in the human family have become fools. (See Psalms 14:1 and Romans 1:22) May we ever be as those wise “Greeks” in seeking to see Him more clearly and to know Him more intimately until the day we see Him face to face. In closing out this devotional study, sing with me this old hymn.
More about Jesus would I know,
More of His grace to others show,
More of His saving fullness see,
More of His love who died for me.
More, more about Jesus.
More, more about Jesus.
More of His saving fullness see,
More of His love who died for me.
More about Jesus let me learn,
More of His Holy will discern,
Spirit of God, my teacher be,
Showing the things of Christ to me.
More about Jesus on His throne,
Riches in glory all His own.
More of His Kingdom's sure increase,
More of His coming, Prince of peace. Chorus
1. What are the prophetic implications of the Abrahamic Covenant of Genesis 12:1-3?
2. Describe how Jesus can be seen in Genesis 22.
3. We spent a good deal of time examining prophesies of the Lord Jesus in Psalms. Chose two Psalms that contain prophesies of our Lord, and research the New Testament references noting the fulfillment of these prophesies. Write in your own words a brief explanation of these prophesies.
4. How can an understanding of Old Testament prophesies of Christ strengthen your faith?