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Saturday, October 3, 2020

EXODUS – GOD’s MIRACULOUS DELIVERANCE of ISRAEL FROM EGYPT – Chapter FOUR

Contributing commentaries by pastors Sonny Islas, Albert Lopez and James Fire
Exodus 1-5 by pastor Chuck Smith

EXODUS 4 – by James Fire, for the Facebook video, go here.

INTRODUCTION: Chapter Four could really be considered Chapter Three – Part Two; because it picks right up from where Chapter Three ends; this is a reminder to us that just because we finish one chapter and begin another, that doesn’t necessarily mean it’s the start of a new subject, as you would expect in a text book or even a novel. The Chapters as well as the verses were added to our Bibles in the 15th and 16th centuries, so that we may conveniently locate any particular text.

So, by way of a quick review, let’s remember what Chapter three was all about:
The chapter opens with Moses in “the backside of the desert” – not exactly a complimentary location – and for forty years – with sheep (not his own, but his fathers-in-law’s). This was a prince of Egypt that was accustomed to literally, the royal treatment. Now instead of Egyptian servants catering to his every need, he tends to the needs of these sheep – wild and wooly company, indeed!
As pastor Sonny indicated, GOD took forty years to get Egypt out of this man. GOD replaces that in Moses that is unusable with meekness and faith, conditioning the man to become pliable putty and usable in His Almighty hand.
Incidentally – that is a good prayer to pray regularly: “LORD, keep me usable”.
He saw the presence of GOD in the burning bush; burning bushes weren’t unheard of in this desert full of thorn bushes, probably acacia bushes with resinous, oily sap, that when combined with the intense heat of the desert sun, would combust into flames, and eventually burn up. Not so with this bush – yes, it seemed to burn, but not get burned up. As was mentioned previously, a scriptural symbol of GOD’s grace: His holiness manifest in thorns, representing sin, but not consuming the bush.

He told Moses the ground on which he stood was holy; not that there was anything particularly more holy about that dirt than any other dirt – just that GOD’s presence made that dirt holy: the same way that GOD makes our dirt – these bodies of ours, made from the dust of the earth, holy by His presence in the hearts of those who are born again in Christ.
GOD informs Moses that He has both heard and seen the affliction of His people, and that He intends on delivering them from Egypt and deliver them to a land “flowing with milk and honey”. 

Likewise GOD has delivered us from the kingdom of darkness and sin and delivered us to the Kingdom of His dear Son, the LORD Jesus Christ (COL 1:13). He then reveals a bit more of the details of this deliverance: He is going to send Moses himself to deliver the people of Israel and gives him “a token”: that this very location, the mountain on which Moses then stood, will be where GOD’s people will serve Him.

GOD then reveals His name to Moses: I AM That I AM – the eternal One Who is all that He is, ever was and ever will be, the unchanging and Holy GOD, Creator and Provider for His saints.
He reveals to Moses that Pharaoh will certainly not let the people of Israel go, but that He will “smite Egypt with all [His] wonders” and then Pharaoh will let you go, but not empty handed, but with wagon-loads of jewels of silver, gold and raiment, “the spoils of Egypt”. So we pick it up in Chapter Four now...

EXODUS 4:1-2
1 And Moses answered and said, But, behold, they will not believe me, nor hearken unto my voice: for they will say, The Lord hath not appeared unto thee. 2 And the Lord said unto him, What is that in thine hand? And he said, A rod

Consider that since the days of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, and Joseph as well, GOD hadn’t made Himself known to His people for four hundred years; roughly twice the length of time of our U.S. history! Now after this time of slavery, of bondage, of affliction, this ex-prince of Egypt, Hebrew by blood, is supposed to show up and declare to the people of Israel that they are being delivered?!

I understand Moses dilemma; words are cheap – where’s the proof of his claims? After 400 years the people of Israel are to believe that suddenly, out of the blue, GOD is going to deliver them from the, then, world’s single super-power nation of Egypt? He was rejected once already by his countrymen; why should this second time be any different?

Then GOD asks Moses a question: What is that in your hand, Moses?
Obviously, GOD could see what he had in his hand; so why did He bother asking? GOD often asks questions of people in the Bible, but not because He needs information, but rather because He wants to draw attention to something.

What did Moses have by way of resources to deliver Israel? A large stick: a shepherd’s staff. Nothing really. But this, combined with the authority of GOD, will deliver the Good Shepherd’s sheep from Egypt! GOD is adept at taking nothing, and creating something awesome: from all creation that He created from nothing, to creating saints of GOD from the nothings that we were.

EXODUS 4:3-5
3 And he said, Cast it on the ground. And he cast it on the ground, and it became a serpent; and Moses fled from before it. 4 And the Lord said unto Moses, Put forth thine hand, and take it by the tail. And he put forth his hand, and caught it, and it became a rod in his hand: 5 That they may believe that the Lord God of their fathers, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob, hath appeared unto thee
.

The staff becomes a serpent; in NUMBERS 21, the children of Israel, having been delivered from Egypt and traveling through “the wilderness of Sin” (that’s the actual name of the region, not coincidentally, I think) and they’re complaining about this, that and the other thing; and so GOD chastens them with poisonous serpents, but then in mercy, provides a cure: any who looked upon the brass serpent on the pole would be healed: This is a representation of faith in Christ, who was raised up on ‘a pole’ – the cross, and all who trust in Him shall be saved from the deadliest poison there is: sin!

The transformation of a staff into a serpent is the first sign GOD provides Israel that I AM has sent Moses. Now GOD provides sign #2:

EXODUS 4:6-8
6 And the Lord said furthermore unto him, Put now thine hand into thy bosom. And he put his hand into his bosom: and when he took it out, behold, his hand was leprous as snow. 7 And he said, Put thine hand into thy bosom again. And he put his hand into his bosom again; and plucked it out of his bosom, and, behold, it was turned again as his other flesh. 8 And it shall come to pass, if they will not believe thee, neither hearken to the voice of the first sign, that they will believe the voice of the latter sign
.

Leprosy is a type of sin in the Scriptures: this disease attacks the nervous system and kills these tissues so that all sensation of feeling is lost. This disease necrotizes the flesh also, rotting it, so people afflicted with this malady would lose fingers, toes, ears, and nose. Sin is like that: it desensitizes us to GOD’s conviction against sin; we don’t feel guilty, we don’t experience the conviction of the Holy Spirit (HEB 3:13 speaks of the deceitfulness of sin; 1 TIM 4:2 talks of how deception as a result of sin will sear the conscience).

Sin brings loss, not of fingers, toes, ears and nose – but the loss of peace, prosperity, life and hope; sin defiles everything in a life that it touches, and nothing escapes its touch!
Where does Moses put his hand that it becomes leprous? In his bosom, close to his heart, the very source of sin, the central cause of trouble for the human race:
JEREMIAH 17:9
9 The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked: who can know it?
MATTHEW 15:18-20a
18 But those things which proceed out of the mouth come forth from the heart; and they defile the man. 19 For out of the heart proceed evil thoughts, murders, adulteries, fornications, thefts, false witness, blasphemies: 20 These are the things which defile a man
. . .

It’s when he places his hand the second time into his bosom that the leprosy is cured, and I believe this speaks of the second birth; our hearts are full of sin in our first birth, but becomes a habitation of the Holy Spirit in the second birth (EZEK 36:26; JOHN 3:3).

EXODUS 4:9
9 And it shall come to pass, if they will not believe also these two signs, neither hearken unto thy voice, that thou shalt take of the water of the river, and pour it upon the dry land: and the water which thou takest out of the river shall become blood upon the dry land
.

Here GOD provides yet a third sign: the transformation of water into blood; this sign demonstrates the power of GOD, proving that His deliverance is assured. Remember at the cross – when the Roman centurion took a spear and thrust it into our LORD’s side: remember what flowed out from the wound? Blood and water: proving that GOD’s deliverance from sin, death and hell is assured for all who trust in JESUS.
GALATIANS 1:3-5
3 Grace be to you and peace from God the Father, and from our Lord Jesus Christ, 4 Who gave himself for our sins, that he might deliver us from this present evil world, according to the will of God and our Father: 5 To whom be glory for ever and ever. Amen.

COLOSSIANS 1:12-14
12 Giving thanks unto the Father, which hath made us meet to be partakers of the inheritance of the saints in light: 13 Who hath delivered us from the power of darkness, and hath translated us into the kingdom of his dear Son: 14 In whom we have redemption through his blood, even the forgiveness of sins:
Three powerful, GOD-ordained miracles to show the people of Israel that the LORD is with them! And how does Moses respond to these remarkable feats of GOD Almighty?

EXODUS 4:10-12
10 And Moses said unto the Lord, O my Lord, I am not eloquent, neither now [heretofore], nor since thou hast spoken unto thy servant: but I am slow of speech, and of a slow tongue. 11 And the Lord said unto him, Who hath made man's mouth? or who maketh the dumb, or deaf, or the seeing, or the blind? have not I the Lord? 12 Now therefore go, and I will be with thy mouth, and teach thee what thou shalt say
.

In MATTHEW 13, the LORD Jesus is confronted by people in His own hometown with their expression of blatant unbelief; and it was because of this “He did not many mighty works” (vs. 18).
How we limit GOD by our unbelief because we consider our weaknesses, our inabilities, over GOD’s Almighty power. Our Creator GOD made this entire universe from nothing other than His spoken Word! 

GOD in His fullness fashioned for Himself a human body: becoming fully GOD, fully man – eternally begotten of the Father. He Who has made all people, whether deaf or hearing, whether blind of seeing – no matter to GOD, He can and will use anyone – as long as they rely on His ability and not consider their own inability or disability as an obstacle.

QUESTION: What weakness or inability of ours can stop GOD from using us for His purposes? Look through the length and breadth of Scripture, and it testifies of saints no different than you or I, who in spite of their frailties and weaknesses, were used mightily by GOD – simply because they placed their faith in the Almighty and did not consider any inadequacies of their own!

This is something I had to come to terms with when the LORD made it known that I’m to be a pastor: all I could see was my weaknesses, frailties, inabilities; and I had to recognize that I was paying more attention to these things, than the power that GOD promises me, if I will simply follow Him by faith – bragging about my weakness, so that GOD’s power could be demonstrated! And it’s the same for all of us! 

None of us knows how to function and work in GOD’s kingdom according to our own understanding, knowledge, and abilities – but no fear: GOD teaches us! “[GOD] will teach you what you shall say”, (and what you shall do)!

Consider the man Gideon, hiding out from the Midianites, the (then) enemies of Israel, and what the angel of the LORD declared to him:

JUDGES 6:7-12, esp. vs.12
7 And it came to pass, when the children of Israel cried unto the Lord because of the Midianites, 8 That the Lord sent a prophet unto the children of Israel, which said unto them, Thus saith the Lord God of Israel, I brought you up from Egypt, and brought you forth out of the house of bondage; 9 And I delivered you out of the hand of the Egyptians, and out of the hand of all that oppressed you [Canaanites], and drove them out from before you, and gave you their land; 10 And I said unto you, I am the Lord your God; fear not the gods of the Amorites, in whose land ye dwell: but ye have not obeyed my voice. 11 And there came an angel of the Lord, and sat under an oak which was in Ophrah, that pertained unto Joash the Abiezrite: and his son Gideon threshed wheat by the winepress, to hide it from the Midianites. 12 And the angel of the Lord appeared unto him, and said unto him, The Lord is with thee, thou mighty man of valor
. (I think maybe Gideon might have looked over his shoulder to see who the angel was talking to!)

Consider Abraham:
ROMANS 4:19-21
19 And being not weak in faith, he considered not his own body now dead, when he was about an hundred years old, neither yet the deadness of Sarah's womb: 20 He staggered not at the promise of God through unbelief; but was strong in faith, giving glory to God; 21 And being fully persuaded that, what he had promised, he was able also to perform
.

We can actually ‘glory’ – that is brag about our own weaknesses when GOD uses us, because in our weakness, GOD gets the glory. 

One of the reasons I believe why and how GOD chooses pastors and His servants as He does: He looks for the weakest, most foolish people (at least how the world sees them) He can find who will simply, with a meek and humble heart, trust GOD, have faith in Him that He’ll do what He promises for all who trust Him, according to His Word!
The LORD says to us, what He said to the apostle Paul:

2 CORINTHIANS 12:9-10
9
. . . My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory [brag] in my infirmities [weaknesses], that the power of Christ may rest upon me. 10 Therefore I take pleasure in infirmities, in reproaches, in necessities, in persecutions, in distresses for Christ's sake: for when I am weak, then am I strong.

It’s been said so many times before, “GOD doesn’t call the qualified (there aren’t any!), He qualifies the called. If GOD guides you into a certain calling, then GOD provides all that you need, instilling you with all the Jesus-style qualities to fulfill that calling.

Moses was entirely unable to deliver Israel in his own strength – he tried, remember? Where did that get him? – the backside of the desert. But note GOD’s sovereignty: that desert was exactly where he needed to be, where GOD prepared him for his encounter with the I AM!
And in that meeting with GOD, the LORD continued His work in this man’s life, to prepare him as “a vessel unto honor, sanctified and acceptable for the LORD’s use, and prepared for every good work” (2 TIM 2:21).

EXODUS 4:13-14
13 And he said, O my Lord, send, I pray thee, by the hand of him whom thou wilt send. 14 And the anger of the Lord was kindled against Moses, and he said, Is not Aaron the Levite thy brother? I know that he can speak well. And also, behold, he cometh forth to meet thee: and when he seeth thee, he will be glad in his heart
.

When the LORD allowed Isaiah to see Him in His glory and then asked who will go for Him and speak on His behalf, Isaiah speaks right up, “Send me!” When the disciples were called of JESUS, they dropped what they were doing and followed Him immediately. When Saul of Tarsus was on the Damascus road, on the way to arrest Christians, Jesus appears to him, knocks him off his horse and when this Pharisee asks, Who are you, LORD? The answer is “I am JESUS.” The LORD tells him to go into the nearby city and it will be told him what he is to do, and immediately, Saul – soon to become Paul the apostle does so.
In each case, the call is made, and GOD’s saints answer and obey.
So what’s Moses’ problem?

Isaiah, the disciples and Paul had the counsel of GOD’s Word, the Holy Scriptures that revealed GOD for Who He is; remember, Moses hasn’t even written GENESIS yet; because GOD has not revealed His Word yet. Moses has nothing to go on, except for this burning bush and what he knows of the GOD of the Hebrews, in His dealings with Abraham, Isaac and Jacob - - four hundred years ago!

Yet the LORD has shown His power in these signs; Moses would have done right to show the same faith as the patriarchs did when GOD spoke to them! When GOD commands the hosts of heaven, He is accustomed to being obeyed instantly; He was obeyed by the patriarchs – not perfectly but obeyed.
So, He’s exasperated with Moses and says, fine! You don’t want to trust that I’ll be “with your mouth” then go fetch Aaron your brother, “I know he can speak well; and speaking of which, he’s on the way to meet you, Mose! He’s going to be happy to see you!”

EXODUS 4:15-16
15 And thou shalt speak unto him and put words in his mouth: and I will be with thy mouth, and with his mouth, and will teach you what ye shall do. 16 And he shall be thy spokesman unto the people: and he shall be, even he shall be to thee instead of a mouth, and thou shalt be to him instead of God
.

So Moses is going to be speaking for GOD, but not directly to the people – he will speak to Aaron (who is destined to become the high priest of Israel) and Aaron will speak to the people. In this sense, Aaron becomes a type for Christ, the Son of GOD and Moses a type for the Father; for the Father didn’t speak directly to the people but told the Son what to say to the people on His behalf, and JESUS our high priest did that (JOHN 12:49-50).

EXODUS 4:17-18
17 And thou shalt take this rod in thine hand, wherewith thou shalt do signs. 18 And Moses went and returned to Jethro his father in law, and said unto him, Let me go, I pray thee, and return unto my brethren which are in Egypt, and see whether they be yet alive. And Jethro said to Moses, Go in peace
.

This rod, this shepherd’s staff that Moses no doubt used in tending to and defending the sheep of Jethro, his father-in-law; this same staff would be used of GOD to tend to and defend His own sheep in shepherding them from Egypt into the wilderness.
We see the same picture with David, who was always left behind to tend to the family’s sheep, which he did with the utmost of faithfulness. And the LORD likewise made David, king of Israel, tending to the LORD’s sheep.

Moses secures Jethro’s permission – yet even though he gave him leave, Moses was bound to obey GOD rather than people. Where people agree on the side of GOD, they are blessed; where they disagree with GOD’s Word, we are duty bound to obey GOD regardless.

EXODUS 4:19-21
19 And the Lord said unto Moses in Midian, Go, return into Egypt: for all the men are dead which sought thy life. 20 And Moses took his wife and his sons, and set them upon an ass, and he returned to the land of Egypt: and Moses took the rod of God in his hand. 21 And the Lord said unto Moses, When thou goest to return into Egypt, see that thou do all those wonders before Pharaoh, which I have put in thine hand: but I will harden his heart, that he shall not let the people go
.

We see the same message from the LORD to Joseph in regard to he and his wife Mary, taking refuge in Egypt, saying it was safe to return to Israel because Herod who sought to kill the Christ child was dead (MATT 2:19-20). 

The LORD reminds Moses to perform all of the miracles that He showed him at the burning bush. Yet the LORD also states that He will harden Pharaoh’s heart – this is the first time the LORD mentions this. Scripture mentions the hardening of Pharaoh’s heart eighteen times!
In most of these cases it states that GOD hardened his heart, in a couple of instances it states that Pharaoh did it himself.

Why would GOD harden his heart though? Does it seem fair that GOD should harden Pharaoh’s heart, only to turn around and plague Egypt because of Pharaoh’s hardened heart? Notice what it says in:

EXODUS 5:1-2
1 And afterward Moses and Aaron went in, and told Pharaoh, Thus saith the Lord God of Israel, Let my people go, that they may hold a feast unto me in the wilderness. 2 And Pharaoh said, Who is the Lord, that I should obey his voice to let Israel go? I know not the Lord, neither will I let Israel go
.

Since Pharaoh refused to let the people of Israel go, the LORD made his decision resolute – so that the LORD would have the opportunity to display His power, that there would be no doubt, that He is the true Creator GOD above all of the other so-called gods of Egypt. Ten plagues were sent down upon Egypt, revealing that the GOD of Israel is supreme over the 10 primary gods of Egypt.
He shows Himself as Creator GOD, and Sovereign LORD over all that He owns (everything He created), and then brings special revelation* through the inspiration of the writings of Moses, including this book of EXODUS that we are now reading.
* For an explanation of the difference between general revelation and special revelation, check out this article: What is general revelation and special revelation?

EXODUS 4:22-23
22 And thou shalt say unto Pharaoh, Thus saith the Lord, Israel is my son, even my firstborn: 23 And I say unto thee, Let my son go, that he may serve me: and if thou refuse to let him go, behold, I will slay thy son, even thy firstborn

The LORD pronounces His most severe judgment first but executes this judgment last. It is the nature of our GOD to drag His feet to bring judgment, but He sprints to show mercy!
The LORD is saying, “Let Me take my son, Israel My first born – or I will take your first born Pharaoh!” Yet even though, as we will see, Pharaoh, time and time again, refuses to let Israel go, the LORD brings down plague after plague, but none of them fulfills this promise of slaying the first born of Egypt – until the very end.

It was the same with the Flood Judgment: It was prophesied that in the year in which Methuselah died, that the flood would come – and Methuselah is recorded as the oldest man in the Bible (he died at 969 years old!) – what does that say about the longsuffering and mercies of GOD?

When Amos, Hosea and Isaiah prophesied of the coming judgment upon Israel, for the people’s rebellion against the Law of GOD, and in the worship of false gods, the judgment didn’t finally take place until the days of Daniel (around 150 years later).

EXODUS 4:24-26
24 And it came to pass by the way in the inn, that the Lord met him, and sought to kill him. 25 Then Zipporah took a sharp stone, and cut off the foreskin of her son, and cast it at his feet, and said, Surely a bloody husband art thou to me. 26 So he
[the LORD] let him go: then she said, A bloody husband thou art, because of the circumcision

This seems bizarre – after all this orchestration of GOD getting Moses to Midian, spending 40 years there as an outcast of Egypt, reduced from ‘prince to shepherd’, now the LORD arranges this meeting at the burning bush, and commissions Moses to go as His spokesman to Pharaoh – only to see about killing him?

What is the reason for this?

Apparently, because Moses neglected to see to his son’s circumcision. Remember though that Moses has two sons, and there’s no mention here of his other son. We might safely presume that his other son was circumcised, otherwise both would be mentioned. So Moses dropped the ball here – and because of this, his wife Zipporah had to deal with this herself.

But was this circumcision to important, that GOD would slay His man, Moses over such a neglect? What was so important about this?

Remember that circumcision was a covenant agreement between the LORD and Abram:
GENESIS 17:2,5,7-10
2 And I will make my covenant between me and thee and will multiply thee exceedingly. 5 Neither shall thy name any more be called Abram, but thy name shall be Abraham; for a father of many nations have I made thee. 7 And I will establish my covenant between me and thee and thy seed after thee in their generations for an everlasting covenant, to be a God unto thee, and to thy seed after thee. 8 And I will give unto thee, and to thy seed after thee, the land wherein thou art a stranger, all the land of Canaan, for an everlasting possession; and I will be their God. 9 And God said unto Abraham, Thou shalt keep my covenant therefore, thou, and thy seed after thee in their generations. 10 This is my covenant, which ye shall keep, between me and you and thy seed after thee; Every man child among you shall be circumcised. 14 And the uncircumcised man child whose flesh of his foreskin is not circumcised, that soul shall be cut off from his people; he hath broken my covenant
.
GOD is serious about His Word, He is serious about being believed by faith according to His Word, and just as serious about obedience from those who follow Him by faith. Moses failed to obey the LORD in seeing both of his sons circumcised – and so his wife sees to this, and out of resentment for being negligent in his duties as the head of the house, she throws the bloody foreskin at his feet. “A bloody husband you are to me”. 
Husbands and fathers - remember: you are designated by GOD as the high priest as it were, of your family. You are accountable to the LORD for the welfare of your wife and children; most especially, their spiritual care! 
Disobedience to the LORD always results in ruin, in damage, in destruction, even in death:
~ Samson disobeyed the LORD and it resulted in his being enslaved by the Philistines and was blinded by them and made to grind grain like a beast. He eventually ended up bringing down the pagan temple of the Philistines, ending his life as well as theirs (JUDGES 16).

~ When King Saul disobeyed the LORD it resulted in losing his authority as king of Israel and the eventual desolation of his house and family lineage. In dismay Saul ended up committing suicide by his own sword on the battlefield (1 SAMUEL 28).

~ The apostle Peter denied the LORD Jesus Christ; Satan had sifted Peter just as he wanted to, and this would have meant the death of his ministry, but the LORD prayed for him, and in grace and mercy, restored him to his apostleship (MARK 14).
For more details on this, look at this brief article from Apologetics Press, Why did God Want to Kill Moses? By Alden Bass. 

EXODUS 4:27-30
27 And the Lord said to Aaron, Go into the wilderness to meet Moses. And he went, and met him in the mount of God, and kissed him. 28 And Moses told Aaron all the words of the Lord who had sent him, and all the signs which he had commanded him. 29 And Moses and Aaron went and gathered together all the elders of the children of Israel: 30 And Aaron spake all the words which the Lord had spoken unto Moses and did the signs in the sight of the people
.

Four decades has passed since Moses left Egypt – how much longer was it that Moses and Aaron even saw each other face to face, we don’t really know. But out of the blue, the LORD speaks to Aaron and says, Go and see your brother – he’s in the wilderness.
I can’t imagine the joy that these brothers must have experienced when they saw each other for the first time after forty years plus!
PSALM 133:1
Behold, how good and how pleasant it is for brethren to dwell together in unity!

ECCLESIASTES
9 Two are better than one; because they have a good reward for their labour.
10 For if they fall, the one will lift up his fellow: but woe to him that is alone when he falleth; for he hath not another to help him up
.
Note that it’s not just the signs that Moses performed before all the elders of Israel, it was coupled together with the true Word of the LORD. This is how every true prophet is known, by the Word of the LORD that will conform to all prior revelation. Up until now, the only revelation that the LORD had given was to the patriarchs, and none of that was written down in canon, that is, authorized Scripture recognized as from GOD.

This is about to happen however, with Moses; what GOD will reveal to this prophet, the Law giver will be a template by which all other forthcoming Scripture will be held up against to see if it matches.

In fact, you can think of all the chapters and verses of all of the sixty-six books of our Bible as pieces of a jigsaw puzzle. Each piece has its place and makes up a part of the whole picture of what the Bible shows us. What this picture shows us, is a portrait of the LORD Jesus Christ!
Other extra-bibical books like the Book of Wisdom, the Gospel of Thomas, the Book of Enoch, the Book of Mary and others, when you try to fit them in with the Bible, it’s like taking pieces from a different jigsaw puzzle and trying to make them fit with those pieces that they don’t belong with.

So what the LORD begins with Moses and these first five books of the Bible (the Tanakh or the Pentateuch) is the foundation upon which all the rest of the books of the Bible will be validated and recognized as canon – or the measure by which we determine if something is legitimate or not.

EXODUS 4:31
31 And the people believed: and when they heard that the Lord had visited the children of Israel, and that he had looked upon their affliction, then they bowed their heads and worshipped
.

This is the proper response by the saints, when the LORD gives the Word, and makes Himself known to us – we bow down and worship – for the LORD is worthy!

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