April 2019 Newsletter - "Not So Old Testament" by Brian Lollock
How many people do you know who read the Bible but mainly focus on reading the parts with Jesus in the text?
Often times, people pass over the Old Testament part of the Bible, because at first glance it seems like a bunch of old stories and rules compiled together, which don’t apply to us today. Many people, including Christians, believe that Jesus doesn’t come into the story until the Gospels: Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John. However, Scripture reveals a greater understanding of Jesus, one the natural mind does not perceive, that Jesus always was, is, and is to come. He is the same yesterday, today, and forever (Heb 13:8).
With the help of the Holy Spirit, let’s go through the veil of the Old Testament and into the light of Christ, the revealing of the New Testament.
Let’s start at the very beginning, Genesis 1:1, “In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.” Most would interpret this scripture as, “6,000 years ago, God created everything in space and our planet earth.” Consider this: God says His Word is “living and active,” (Heb. 4:12) meaning creation is still happening and ongoing. So, let’s take a look at Genesis 1:1 with a living and active understanding.
Beginning- “In the beginning” does not mean “in the beginning of time.” The Hebrew word for “beginning” is the word “reshith,” which means “the beginning of the mind, thought, or the head of someone in authority.”
God- God is not some entity in the sky. God in Hebrew is “Elohim.” There are many ways to define Elohim, but in Ancient Hebrew, it is “the authority Who creates and teaches through power and might.”
Created- When God created, it isn’t talking about creating outer space. This word “bara” (relates to reshith) means “the filling of man with life and the image of God, to fashion, to cut down, to transform, to give new circumstances and conditions.”
Heaven- Heaven is not what we see with our physical eyes or up in the sky. “Shamayim,” is two Hebrew words “Shama” and “Ayin.” Shem means “to hear, listen, and understand.” Ayin means to “look, see, to watch and perceive.” In a teaching, Apostle Michael Petro has said, “It means to have spiritual eyes to see and spiritual ears to hear,” like we see in Matthew 13:15.
Earth- This is not speaking about our physical planet Earth. In Hebrew, Earth means, “Erets,” which means “soil, land, ground, field, way, territory, region.”
What is God showing you now that we have taken the step to breakdown these words?
One facet we can take from the unveiling of Genesis 1:1 is, “God brings power, authority, His character, His image, and transformation into our minds. This gives us spiritual eyes to see and ears to hear. Knowing that Adam (man) was created out of the dust of the earth, we can connect that we are symbolically the earth, the ground, the soil. It is also our heart and inner-being.”
Let’s continue in Genesis 1:2-4, “The earth was without form, and void; and darkness was on the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God was hovering over the face of the waters. Then God said, ‘Let there be light’; and there was light. And God saw the light, that it was good; and God divided the light from the darkness.” Our earth (us) is empty and dark (no understanding). Then God’s Spirit hovers over our waters (the substance and depth of our soul) and gives light (illumination, manifestation, revelation, knowledge, understanding, order).
Consider just one of these functions of God that was presented: He brings light to darkness.
Now let’s look to the Apostle Paul in the New Testament. He states, “For it is the God who commanded light to shine out of darkness, who has shone in our hearts to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ,” in 2 Corinthians 4:6.
The Apostle Paul, had a personal revelation of Jesus in Genesis 1! When Paul (who was Saul) encountered Jesus on the road to Damascus, he had a Genesis 1 experience. He received light shining out of darkness, resulting in his conversion from Judaism to Christianity. “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new.” – 2 Corinthians 5:17
This is an example of seeing Jesus in the Old Testament and in the Torah. The unveiling of the Old Testament is called the “New Testament.” What’s interesting is that if you read the New Testament according to the letter (no spiritual understanding) only, it is considered “Old Testament” because the veil is over the Scripture. When we receive revelation and an unveiling of Christ through any book of the Bible, it is called “Gospel.”
The Old Testament isn’t just about God and Jesus. It’s about you and what God wants to do through you. God established His Word like this for a purpose. The entire Old Testament is written in a “shadow” or in “parables” not to confuse us but to help get us out of our carnal and natural state of mind/understanding in order to be closer to Him. These “shadows” and “parables” are defined as “an earthly example of a heavenly meaning.” God wants to remove our veils, the things that block us from Him, and restore us into His new and living ways with Him.
Knowing this, not only does the Old Testament have Jesus in it, it is also the beginning and foundation of obtaining salvation. In every book, story, law, commandment, and precept in the Old Testament, Jesus is there, concealed in a mystery, waiting to be revealed and inscribed into our hearts.
“The light, moreover, which was contained in the law of Moses, but which had been concealed by a veil, shone forth at the advent of Jesus, the veil being taken away, and those blessings, the shadow of which was contained in the letter, coming forth gradually to the knowledge of men.” – Origen of Alexandria
Origen of Alexandria – De Principiis, Book IV, Ch. I