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3 Unlikely Prayers God (Eventually) Answered

As born-again believers, there are some expectations that the Bible (and hence, God) has of us. One important feature of a believer is that we ought to walk in the spirit so we won’t “fulfil the lust of the flesh” (Galatians 5:16).

The Scriptures also instruct us to “set your affection on things above, not on things on the earth” (Colossians 3:2).

In one famous parable, Jesus even warns against the “cares of this world, the deceitfulness of riches, and the lusts of other things” (Mark 4:19).

With these admonitions in mind, I have found it a bit puzzling and somewhat startling, that God honoured certain requests in the Bible. From a religious and dogmatic viewpoint, there are some requests that don’t seem to be as spiritual or heaven-centred as I thought they needed to be!

Here are three prayers that got an answer I did not expect a holy God to give.

The Prayer of the Syro-Phoenician Woman (Matthew 15: 22-28)

If anyone shouldn’t have had the nerve to approach God, it would have to be the Syro-phoenician woman (Miss SP for short).

First of all, Miss SP was a Gentile who at that time had no lot with Israel. Jesus was blunt in reminding her of who His priority in ministry were–and it didn’t include her.

First reason not to pray? Check!

As if that wasn’t enough, her request was denied–by Jesus Himself. Another reason not to pray!

She was, however, shameless, and showed determined persistence. In fact, according to the Matthew account, Miss SP’s faith would eventually earn the commendation and admiration of the Lord.

But if she had processed things too much (like, I don’t know, maybe me?), I guarantee she would not have approached Jesus in the first place. Before He would have had a chance to tell her “no”, she would have already disqualified herself from making her request known.

Then to hear Jesus say you can’t have what you’re asking for would have deterred even the boldest of intercessors, but not her.

What kind of crazy faith does it take to hear God say you’re a dog and you still keep groveling before him?!

What Kept her Praying?

I can only make some guesses about what could have pushed Miss SP to stoop so low.

It could be the love she had for her daughter back home who was tormented by a demon.

It could be the frustration of knowing how her own life was being disrupted by the extra care she had to give to that ‘sick’ child.

Or perhaps it was pure desperation from having no-one else to turn to for help.

Whatever her motivation was, it was strong enough to cause her to endure blatant disregard and rejection.

Would You Ask God for Crumbs?

Miss SP was so desperate, it seems, that even after being hinted at as an unworthy dog, she started begging for crumbs! That was not very dignified to say the least, but something happened to Jesus when she made herself “of no reputation”.

What was deemed as a closed door just a few sentences before in the story, suddenly turned in her favour. Not only was her request granted, but it was granted “from that very hour” (Matthew 15:28).

Miss SP was among the least qualified persons to get God’s attention.

She is proof that we too can come boldly unto the throne of grace. The mercy and grace that Jesus gave to her may very well be made available to you today–if you’re willing to ask for crumbs too!

The Prayer of Jabez (1 Chronicles 4:10)

The prayer of Jabez is a famous prayer, no doubt. Books and songs have been based on this man’s testimony that continues to inspire believers.

But if I had met Brother Jabez, I would have probably wagged a finger of rebuke at him! (I hear you gasp in disbelief!) I would have thrown 1 Thessalonians 5:16 at him–Rejoice evermore! And then I would have dished out Ephesians 5:20–giving thanks always for all things!

I would have found every spiritual Scripture to encourage Jabez to accept his condition and to “seek those things which are above”.

Now why would I do that? Why would I have challenged Jabez’s desire to be blessed?

Because that’s what I would do to MYSELF!

Aren’t true blessings found in the presence of God and at His right hand? Are we not to be focused on the lively hope we have for Christ’s return?

The answer is yes and yes again.

The prayer of Jabez could very well have been “Lord, give me the strength to go through”.

Or, “God, give me the grace I need so I won’t be distracted by worldly affairs”.

Those are great prayers, but those were not Jabez’s desires.

Jabez had some things bugging him, and he was not about to be a religious hypocrite about them. When something bothers you enough, it would be wise to call on God to fix it! There are times when you just need to blow off some steam before God, and let God know how you honestly, truly and really feel–and that’s what Jabez did.

Of course there’s no guarantee that you’re going to get every single whim and fancy fulfilled, but don’t let that stop you from praying about it!

In Jabez’s case it just so happened that God decided He would fix it. Who knows? You might end up having the same testimony as Jabez! Winner-winner!

The Prayer of Hannah (1 Samuel 1:1-20)

There are few prayers that wreak with carnality as does the prayer of Hannah for a son. (I know she was barren, so before you stone me, let me tell you why I think her focus was possibly of the flesh.)

We know that Hannah was one of two wives to Elkanah and despite her barrenness, she had a couple things going for her:

  1. She was the wife who Elkanah loved

  2. She was always given more (a worthy portion) than the other wife

  3. Her husband never pressured her to bear children

In fact, it appears to me that even Hannah was ok with the way things were. She was happy! No child, no problem.

But that was until she started being teased about her barrenness.

What previously was not an issue steadily grew into a burden. What had not been on her mind at all, started to become her focus.

It’s not because having a child was her initial desire–it’s because she was now being “provoked”. The other wife wanted Hannah to “fret”.

She did it on purpose!

She knew Hannah was ok and comfortable, content in love and acceptance from her husband. Things only changed when Hannah allowed her adversary to nag her away from contentment and into worry.

When the Flesh Rises Up

What I want you to see is that Hannah would not have prayed for a son if she hadn’t been mocked by a competitor. If she had stood her ground in contentment (as every good Christian should) she would have kept her peace and been unmoved (as every good Christian should).

For Hannah to react the way she did, that sounds like the flesh to me!

Why didn’t she rest in the love and pampering she was already known to receive from her husband?

The religious me would have told Hannah to go and be thankful.

“Be content with what you already have”, I would say.

“This is the plan of the enemy to distract you, Hannah”, would have been my counsel.

I would have told her to pray, but for forgiveness because she was taking her eyes off eternity!

Show of Hands if This Is You

So Hannah fell for it. She caved. She gave in to the devices of her enemy. Hannah was shaken from her eternal focus and began to be bothered by a temporal thing.

But aren’t you and I guilty of this too?

How often are we quite content with our lives until an old friend from high school shows up with the model wife, owning the large corporation and he’s not even going bald?!

Yes, life was good before I saw my friends on Facebook promoting their third book and all before the age of 40!

But you know what? ‘Carnal’ Hannah still prayed.

She didn’t allow the ‘unspiritualness’ (did I coin that word?) of her desires to fester inside of her. She poured it all out to her God! Yup, Hannah shows us how to pray when we get jealous!

And of course we know the history–she got an answer! Who would’ve thought that a prayer fueled by a desire to be like someone else would have gotten God’s attention? Well, somehow it did! And that blows my mind!

The Conclusion

A friend once told me this: If it’s too big to be a prayer, then it’s too small to be a burden!

In other words, what made something suitable for my prayer list was not how well it fit my concept of true spirituality, but how much it was a burden to me! Friend, if your feelings and worries don’t make it on your prayer list, they shouldn’t be on your mind either!

The desires and concerns of your heart may not always follow the rules of your religion, oh Christian. You may not even be at “the place” (whatever that means) to pray. But the same Bible that teaches you not to “mind the things of the flesh”, also teaches “casting all your care upon Him because He careth for you”.

You are wrestling with whether or not you should even say such things to a holy God. You think it might not be the most spiritual conversation to start with your Father. But if it’s bothering you, go ahead and talk to God about it!

I don’t promise you that you’re going to get that large coast Sir Jabez; or that breakthrough Miss SP; or that child, Hannah.

What do I promise? Only what is said in Philippians 4:6-7:

“Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God. And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.”

Translation? If you pour out what’s on your heart, you will at least get some much-needed peace on the matter that weighs so heavily on you!

Ignorance is Costing Your Spiritual Growth

It is advised for Christians to submit to the will of God—to acquire his wisdom and guidance; however, knowledge is pivotal in understanding, interpreting, and taking action towards this discussion (Proverbs 1:7).

God is the one who gives wisdom, knowledge, and understanding to those who explore a genuine relationship with him, but how can you have that honest relationship with God if you lack knowledge of who he is?

Understanding the importance of knowledge and ideas in your Christian journey

Knowledge is information and facts we acquire through education or experiences we pass through. To effectively power your spiritual life and understand God’s plan for your life, you need to understand who he is through learning his word.

In John chapter 1, we learned that in the beginning was the word, and the word was with God, and the word was God.

The New Testament was first translated from Hebrew to Aramaic and Greek, and these three translations bear words in their weight, unlike the English translation.

In Greek, the term for “word” is “logos,” which means an expression of an idea. So let us have John chapter one again: In the beginning, there was an expression of ideas, and the expression of ideas was with God, and the expression of ideas was God.

Looking at Chapter 4, we can see that the expression of God’s ideas (logos) is life, which is the light of men. So, you have to know what light is to have life.

The word light in Hebrew means knowledge, and darkness means ignorance, so you need knowledge to understand the expression of God’s idea for the world and your life and shatter all the bonds of ignorance.

Satan can only rule your life to the extent of your ignorance

Satan is referred to as the prince of darkness, but this doesn’t mean he moves around at night; it means he can only take advantage of you in areas where you are least knowledgeable.

This is why Satan is not threatened when emotional preaching is delivered; he is only scared when teachings towards spiritual and personal growth are delivered because he will keep losing grip on you the more you keep acquiring light.

When you tell someone, “do not fornicate,”  you only make the idea more pleasurable, but once you teach the same person what it means to be the temple of the Holy Ghost, he or she automatically begins to think about what is good for the temple of the Holy Ghost or not.

More like keeping a jar of candy in front of a kid and asking him not to go for it, you will only pique his attention, and until he steals some of those candies, he won’t be himself.

In Romans 7:7-8, Paul explains how the law makes sin more desirable. Also, in James 2:9–11, we can see the condemning nature of the law, and this is what Satan takes advantage of when he manipulates our minds, keeping us rooted in sin and addiction.

So, knowledge or light is what we need to conquer all spheres of life in accordance with the will of God.

How can we acquire this knowledge?

Faith comes by hearing, and hearing, God’s word (ideas). If you want to change the trajectory of your life positively, you need to change the ideas you have been receiving.

John 1:14 says that the word (God’s ideas) became flesh. So Jesus Christ is God’s ideas in the flesh. This is why Jesus says he is the light (knowledge), and darkness (ignorance) cannot stand or comprehend the light.

God had revealed his thoughts to us—the blueprint for our lives through Jesus, and if you want to acquire this big idea, you have to listen to Jesus.

All the problems we face in the world—crimes, poverty, unemployment, dealing with sin, and a lack of love and empathy are caused by a key thing we are missing that Jesus brings.

We all think the answer to problems is religion and some other ideas, which is why we have numerous ideas and religions littering the earth, but there is still no peace.

For unto us a child is born, and 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)

The government he is referring to here is not a coup or an election, but of peace (to expel worries) and righteousness (towards the infinite goal), which, if you look at Isaiah 9:7, is the increase of his government upon which there shall be no end.

The kingdom of heaven (Jesus’ government) is like yeast (Matthew 13:33), and I have never seen yeast lose a fight in a dough. Once the yeast is worked in, the dough has no other option other than to keep increasing until it is worded into a fine final product, despite the degree of heat it may face.

Summing up

Knowledge is going to come through a deeper understanding of Jesus, which places you miles ahead of the devil as you can grasp the width of his devices—stopping him in his tracks with the new power you gained in your permanent role in Jesus’s government, which is bound to bring you peace in all the plights of life and make you excel in the face of persecution.

Your life will become the ideas you have accepted as truth. So what truths are you accepting today?

I am Joshua Odogwu, a lover of the word of God. Nothing excites me like sharing knowledge and revelation of his works and words. https://dreampeas.com/biblical-meaning-of-windows-in-dreams

Learning How to Follow God

The story of the Bible is the history of God leading His people through the wilderness. The clearest illustration of this is found in the books of Moses and the records of the Hebrew nation and their road to the promised land. It proved to God’s people He would be their leader in the wilderness through Moses, as Psalm 77:20 says, “You led Your people like a flock by the hand of Moses and Aaron.”

Once God brought His people through the Red Sea and guided them to Mount Sinai, He defined for them a new relationship with Him through the Torah, His laws. Paul tells us in Galatians 3:23-24 that “we were kept in custody under the law,” the law becoming a tutor (one who leads children) to lead us to Christ. God’s plan was that He would be with them, His presence going before them as a pillar of cloud by day and fire by night. His presence would reside in the middle of all religious activities as the Ark of the Covenant to remind them of His holiness. Ultimately, the Father was guiding His people through the wilderness to find His Son. He was teaching them how to be led and how to follow.

While the Tabernacle and all its elements were being constructed, Moses would move his tent outside the camp as the tent of meeting where Moses would meet with God, evidenced by the pillar of cloud (Exodus 33:7-9). The people would spend more than a year in this place, getting oriented to this new way of experiencing God. Moses asked God not to lead them anywhere unless His presence went with them (verse 15). God acknowledged that He would honor Moses’ request in verse 17: “The Lord said to Moses, ‘I will also do this thing of which you have spoken; for you have found favor in My sight and I have known you by name.’”

Then in Numbers 10:11-12, the cloud left Sinai “in the second year, in the second month,” heading to Kadesh-barnea (interpreted as “a holy place in the desert”). It turned out to be a regular stopping point as the people wandered in the wilderness before entering the promised land. It also was from this place that Moses would send spies into the promised land in Numbers 13. God wanted them to immediatelygo in and possess the land which the Lord swore to give to your fathers” and their descendants (Deuteronomy 1:8).

But that’s not what happened.

Two Conclusions

God instructed Moses to choose twelve men who would sneak into the promised land to “See what the land is like, and whether the people who live in it are strong or weak, whether they are few or many” (Numbers 13:18). In verses 27-29, ten of them reported that the land was truly fruitful, but the people living in the land were too strong for them to overcome. These ten spoke for the masses. The other two had a different take. They told Moses, “We should, by all means, go up and take possession of it, for we will surely overcome it” (Verse 30). These two recognized that the people were not limited by their own ability and that the Lord would be the difference. Caleb and Joshua’s testimonies were not enough to sway the people, and the nation ended up wandering in the wilderness for another 38 years.

What caused this difference in conclusions? It had to do with the relationship that each had with God. It is one thing to follow, and it is another thing to trust in the leader. In Numbers 14:24, “But My servant Caleb, because he has had a different spirit and has followed Me fully, I will bring into the land which he entered, and his descendants shall take possession of it.” God was promising Caleb that he and his descendants would enjoy the fruit of the promised land, unlike those who could not trust Him. In addition, God chose Joshua to succeed Moses in leading the people into the new land because he was “a man in whom is the Spirit” (Numbers 27:18), one who could be trusted because he was a man being led by the Holy Spirit. According to Joshua 14:8, he says, “I followed the Lord my God fully.”

Following the Leader

2 And Moses summoned all Israel and said to them, “You have seen all that the Lord did before your eyes in the land of Egypt to Pharaoh and all his servants and all his land; 3 the great trials which your eyes have seen, those great signs and wonders. 4 Yet to this day, the Lord has not given you a heart to know, nor eyes to see, nor ears to hear. 5 I have led you forty years in the wilderness; your clothes have not worn out on you, and your sandal has not worn out on your foot. 6 You have not eaten bread, nor have you drunk wine or strong drink, in order that you might know that I am the Lord your God. 7 When you reached this place, Sihon, the king of Heshbon and Og the king of Bashan came out to meet us for battle, but we defeated them; 8 and we took their land and gave it as an inheritance to the Reubenites, the Gadites, and the half-tribe of the Manassites. 9 So keep the words of this covenant to do them, that you may prosper in all that you do. (Deuteronomy 29:2-9)

In the process of finding an individual and personal conviction to follow God, the believer finds others who appear to follow the Lord and gets behind them. This is the process of following those placed in one’s life as an example since they have proven themselves by their consistent walk. In Philippians 3:17, Paul writes, Brethren, join in following my example, and observe those who walk according to the pattern you have in us. Moses was that example for the Hebrews in the wilderness while they learned to trust in the Lord’s provisions. All the provisions necessary for fullness in the believer’s life are realized in the process of following. In Verse 6, “You have not eaten bread, nor have you drunk wine or strong drink, in order that you might know that I am the Lord your God.” Even victories over enemies are found there. It is God’s way of demonstrating that this quality of life is possible and real.

The Spirit of Christ

If we are to fully follow God, we must believe on and trust in the One whom we follow. Jesus left us with the Holy Spirit, the Spirit of Truth, Who will guide us into all the truth. The Spirit is also referred to as the Spirit of Christ in Romans 8:9 and 1 Peter 1:11. Without faith, it is impossible to please God. Without faith in Who Jesus is, we become no more than people wandering in the wilderness, just like the nation of Israel. Moses was a great man of faith, and Hebrews 11:27 tells us, “By faith he left Egypt, not fearing the wrath of the king; for he endured, as seeing Him who is unseen.” Moses saw Jesus as he was being led!

14 “For all who are being led by the Spirit of God, these are sons of God. 15 For you have not received a spirit of slavery leading to fear again, but you have received a spirit of adoption as sons by which we cry out, ‘Abba! Father!’ 16 The Spirit Himself testifies with our spirit that we are children of God.” (Romans 8:14-16)

The leading of the Holy Spirit produces maturity, sons rather than just children. This happens when we see our heavenly Father as “Abba,” Daddy, and then our relationship with Him becomes personal and not abstract. It produces an assurance, a confidence that we truly are His children, part of His royal family. We are then able to trust Him no matter where He leads us.

Why the Law of Moses?

From the time Abraham received promises from God in response to his faith in Genesis 12:1-3 (approximately 2000 BC) until God gave Moses the entire Law on Mount Sinai in Exodus 20 (approximately 1476 BC), the Hebrew nation functioned spiritually under this covenant God gave to Abraham that He would bless those who bless Abraham. For a number of those years, the Hebrews were held in bondage in Egypt by pharaohs until Moses was raised up to lead the nation across the Red Sea into the wilderness. The question arises as to why God would introduce the Law of Moses to His people when it was to be a temporary covenant, until such a time as Messiah would introduce the new covenant nearly 1,500 years later? What purpose did this old covenant serve?

In Galatians 3:19, Paul asks and then answers the question, “Why the Law then?” The conclusion is understood in the context of the covenant made with Abraham that the inheritance from the promise of God is not based on law, but through faith in the promise made to Abraham, who is the father of us all (Romans 4:16). The Law, then is added because of transgressions, meaning that it was intended to lead us to Christ, “so that we may be justified by faith” (Galatians 3:24). In verse 23, Paul explains that those who put their faith in the Law of Moses are being kept in custody under [the power of] the Law until Messiah would come. The benefits of spiritual life are realized by faith in God’s promises and not in the celebration of religious rituals and legal obedience.

A different gospel

The churches of Galatia were struggling with the influence of those who were teaching that Christians need to keep the Law of Moses in order to be justified into the Christian faith. There had been a Council led by James (Jesus’s half-brother) held in Jerusalem dealing with this matter and described by Luke in Acts 15. The results of that account were reported in Acts 15:19-20 where James states, “Therefore it is my judgment that we do not trouble those who are turning to God from among the Gentiles, but that we write to them that they abstain from things contaminated by idols and from fornication and from what is strangled and from blood.” Christians would not be required to keep the Law of Moses. This conclusion did not end the controversy and there remained those, known as Judaizers, who would continue to require it. Attempts like these continue to this day as men try to complicate the new covenant with old covenant and other man-made requirements.

In Galatians 1:6-7 Paul says, “I am amazed that you are so quickly deserting Him who called you by the grace of Christ, for a different gospel; which is really not another; only there are some who are disturbing you and want to distort the gospel of Christ.” When Jesus said He came to fulfill the Law of Moses (Matthew 5:17), He meant that there was to be a newly defined relationship with God, known as the new covenant (promised to Israel in Jeremiah 31) and enacted on better promises (Hebrews 8:6), therefore making the old covenant obsolete (Hebrews 8:13). The old covenant represents God’s perfect justice, but without the spiritual ability to fulfill it. It had to be kept perfectly or the follower would be classified as a transgressor (James 2:10).

Righteousness of the Law

In Romans 7:7-12, Paul further explains that “the Law is holy and righteous and good” (verse 12), but its intended purpose is to help followers of the Law to understand that righteousness is not derived from the Law, but that the Law makes sin come alive and exposes the sin that is “taking opportunity through the commandment” (verse 11) and deceives me resulting in separation from God (spiritual death). In 1Timothy 1:8-10, “But we know that the Law is good, if one uses it lawfully, realizing the fact that law is not made for a righteous person, but for those who are lawless and rebellious, for the ungodly and sinners, for the unholy and profane, for those who kill their fathers or mothers, for murderers and immoral men and homosexuals and kidnappers and liars and perjurers, and whatever else is contrary to sound teaching”.

In Romans 10, Paul addresses the Jewish nation of his day, clearly defining how the Law cannot lead to righteousness because Jews do not “subject themselves to the righteousness of God” (Romans 10:3), but rather their own ability to keep the law, otherwise known as “righteousness based on the law”, and that attempt produces a self-righteousness. God’s righteousness can never be earned (see Romans 4:4-5) but is received by faith in the One Who is righteous! Romans 10:4 summarizes the argument when it concludes “For Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to everyone who believes”. Faith in Jesus as the Christ is the only avenue to God’s righteousness (see John 14:6).

Righteousness by faith

According to Galatians 3:12-14, trying to be a Christian and yet attempting to live under the Law of Moses is a curse and Messiah had become a curse for us so that Jews and Gentiles “would receive the promise of the Spirit by faith”. This promise is only realized through a real faith in Jesus as Messiah, having trusted in His sacrificial death and resurrection and not in one’s own efforts to be or become righteous. In verse 11, Paul quotes the Old Testament passage found in Habakkuk 2:4 as his evidence and confidence: “THE RIGHTEOUS MAN SHALL LIVE BY FAITH”.

Under the old covenant, salvation came from God and was perceived to be experienced when one became a part of God’s people. Rahab, a Gentile is a good example of this principle, as Joshua 6:25 says: “However, Rahab the harlot and her father’s household and all she had, Joshua spared; and she has lived in the midst of Israel to this day, for she hid the messengers whom Joshua sent to spy out Jericho.” She became a Jew by believing in the God of Israel and acting on that faith. According to the Apostle Paul in Romans 9:8, “That is, it is not the children of the flesh who are children of God, but the children of the promise are regarded as descendants”. Faith in the God of Abraham, Isaac & Jacob has always been the avenue of salvation.

Uniting the Jew and Gentile

The new covenant encourages believers to assemble together often and all the more as the time of Jesus’s second coming draws near (Hebrews 10:25). The locations of the gatherings are not defined nor the particular means of worship, etc., unlike the old covenant. Yet the new covenant has ordained that both Jew and Gentile will come together since the dividing wall between the two has been broken down in Christ (Ephesians 2:14) and all are members of God’s household. This is only possible because the “Law of commandments contained in ordinances” is no longer a requirement and therefore peace is established between the two groups. In Romans 5:1, “Having been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ” Faith in Jesus as Christ resolves all divisions.

In Ephesians 2:20, Paul connects the foundation of the apostles [new covenant] and prophets [old covenant] as one foundation, meaning both groups now have the same foundation and it is not the Law of Moses. In Romans 3:21, Paul states, “But now apart from the Law the righteousness of God has been manifested, being witnessed by the Law and the Prophets”, meaning that the Old Testament Scriptures predicted that it would take a “prophet” (Messiah) Who will speak with God’s words as was given to Israel in Deuteronomy 18:15, “The Lord your God will raise up for you a prophet like me from among you, from your countrymen, you shall listen to him”.

Jesus Christ, our point of reference

The fact is that Messiah’s arrival did not create a large fanfare among the Jews (John 1:11) and the Jewish leadership fought constantly against His acceptance as the Promised One since it meant that their positions of leadership were threatened. Isaiah (53:1) warned of this rejection and was quoted by Paul in Romans 10:16-17, “However, they did not all heed the good news; for Isaiah says, “LORD, WHO HAS BELIEVED OUR REPORT? So faith comes from hearing, and hearing by the word of Christ.” As Galatians 3:24 states, the Law is intended to lead us to the Messiah. The point of reference is not the Law of Moses, but the person of Jesus Christ.

The Law of Moses included not only the moral law, but also the ceremonial law (Jewish festivals) as well as the worship requirements associated with the tabernacle and later the temple. In Hebrews 9, the writer begins the conversation of the “regulations of divine worship” associated with the tabernacle, including a description of the various elements within the tabernacle that became the center of worship for the nation while in the wilderness. The priestly activities associated with each of these elements was always intended to point to the Messiah as High Priest, who would be the fulfillment of eternal redemption. As an example, the lampstand represents Jesus as the light of the world (John 8:12) and the table of the sacred bread is a picture of Jesus as the bread of life (John 6:35). The daily priestly activities were always pointing to the coming Messiah! In Psalm 27:5, David says, “For in the day of trouble He will conceal me in His tabernacle; in the secret place of His tent He will hide me; He will lift me up on a rock” (a reference to Christ in 1Corintians 10:4).

Christ is the fulfillment

The Jewish festivals also have their fulfillment in the first coming and second coming of Christ. For example, Passover (Leviticus 23:4-5) was fulfilled at the Last Supper, Unleavened Bread (Leviticus 23:6-8) at Calvary, First Fruits (Leviticus 23:9-14) on Easter and Feast of Weeks (Leviticus 23:15-22) at Pentecost in Acts 2 and the coming of the Holy Spirit. These festivals are all celebrated in the spring. The final three festivals are references to the second coming of Messiah, Trumpets (Leviticus 23:23-25) to be fulfilled at the Rapture (1Thessalonians 4:16-18), Day of Atonement (Leviticus 23:26-32) speaks of the Tribulation, and Tabernacles (Leviticus 23:33-43) refers to the 1,000-year reign of Messiah (the Millennium). These last three festivals happen in the fall.

The 1,500 years of life under the old covenant was meant to reveal the person of Jesus as Messiah for those who were fully engaged with their hearts. The symbols and types associated with the old covenant worship are a direct link to Jesus Christ as Messiah and Jesus would become recognizable to many because of the connections to the various aspects of regular worship. The new covenant is the only covenant referred to in Scripture as eternal (Hebrews 13:20), meaning it has always existed as the fulfillment of the fullness of God in man.

Antisemitism in History

The current war in Israel against Hamas is highlighting the climate around the world regarding the attitudes toward the Jews. Antisemitism is rearing its ugly head all over the world, evidenced by protests and other public displays against Israel’s right to defend itself against the horrific evil perpetrated by Hamas against the civilian population near Gaza on October 7, 2023. It is of great importance for the Christian believer to understand the history and the nature of this condition.

According to the U.S. State Department, “Antisemitism is a certain perception of Jews, which may be expressed as hatred toward Jews. Rhetorical and physical manifestations of antisemitism are directed toward Jewish or non-Jewish individuals and/or their property, toward Jewish community institutions and religious facilities.” It exists prevalently not just in nations that are opposed to Israel and its existence, but even within the Christian community in America and worldwide.

History of Israel

Understanding the nature of antisemitism requires an active look at the history of the Jewish nation and the world’s response to its existence. It begins with Abram and God’s promises to be a blessing to the nations of the world (Genesis 12:1-3). In Genesis 13:15-17, God promised Abram a particular tract of land, commonly referred to as the promised land: for all the land which you see, I will give it to you and to your descendants forever. “I will make your descendants as the dust of the earth, so that if anyone can number the dust of the earth, then your descendants can also be numbered. “Arise, walk about the land through its length and breadth; for I will give it to you.” According to many Scripture references, God promised that He would give it to Abram and his descendants forever!

The actual birth of the nation of Israel did not take place until Jacob moved himself and his family to Egypt with Joseph’s family. They were held in slavery in Egypt until Moses led them to the wilderness and eventually, the promised land. Joshua led them to take control of the promised land and the land was distributed among the twelve tribes according to God’s commands.

A Partial Hardening

For I do not want you, brethren, to be uninformed of this mystery—so that you will not be wise in your own estimation—that a partial hardening has happened to Israel until the fullness of the Gentiles has come in; and so all Israel will be saved; just as it is written, “THE DELIVERER WILL COME FROM ZION, HE WILL REMOVE UNGODLINESS FROM JACOB.” “THIS IS MY COVENANT WITH THEM, WHEN I TAKE AWAY THEIR SINS.” From the standpoint of the gospel, they are enemies for your sake, but from the standpoint of God’s choice they are beloved for the sake of the fathers; for the gifts and the calling of God are irrevocable. (Romans 11:25-29)

The rejection of Jesus as Messiah by the Jewish leadership of Jesus’s day was not the end of the story for Israel. Paul writes to the Roman church that the partial hardening that has happened will not be ended until the fullness of the Gentiles has come in, referring to the end of the church age and Jesus’s return in the second coming. God promises that her sins will be taken away and that the Jews are still the people of God since the gifts and the calling of God are irrevocable. Paul teaches that their rejection of the gospel had a purpose: But by their transgression salvation has come to the Gentiles, to make them jealous (Romans 11:11). God will use their jealousy, that other nations have access to some of the same privileges previously reserved for Israel, to bring them back to God. The Jews will be the center of attention in the Kingdom Age, when “In those days ten men from all the nations will grasp the garment of a Jew, saying, ‘Let us go with you, for we have heard that God is with you” Zechariah 8:23.

Laying Down Your Life for the Sheep

“I am the good shepherd, and I know My own and My own know Me, even as the Father knows Me and I know the Father; and I lay down My life for the sheep. I have other sheep, which are not of this fold; I must bring them also, and they will hear My voice; and they will become one flock with one shepherd. For this reason, the Father loves Me, because I lay down My life so that I may take it again. No one has taken it away from Me, but I lay it down on My own initiative. I have authority to lay it down, and I have authority to take it up again. This commandment I received from My Father.” (John 10:14-18)

The world would blame the Jews for Jesus’s death even though Jesus gave up His life willingly. The Roman Emperor Constantine had a Christian conversion experience around 312 and declared tolerance for Christianity in 313. The Council of Nicaea took place in 325, and he wrote a letter referring to Jews as polluted wretches and to have no fellowship with the perjury of the Jews and that we have nothing in common with the usage of these parricides and murderers of our Lord. Even Martin Luther had strong feelings of antisemitism, as he wrote in The Jew and Their Lies (1543):

What shall we Christians do with this damned, rejected race of Jews? Since they live among us, and we know about their lying, blasphemy, and cursing, we cannot tolerate them if we do not wish to share in their lies, curses, and blasphemy. In this way, we cannot quench the inextinguishable fire of divine rage (as the prophets say) nor convert the Jews.

Antisemitism Throughout the Church Age

Several early church fathers saw the Jews as somewhat or totally culpable for the death of Jesus Christ. Justin Martyr (100-165) thought that the Gentiles replaced the Jews in God’s redemptive plan. Ignatius, Bishop of Antioch, wrote that those who celebrated Passover with the Jews were partakers with those who killed the Lord. And Tertullian (160-220), in his work Against the Jews, blamed the entire Jewish race for the death of Jesus.

Various Catholic leaders who had great influence over public thought throughout the church age, including Saint Gregory of Nyssa (335-394), Saint Augustine (354-430), Saint Jerome (374-419), Pope Innocent III (1160/61-1216), and Pope Pious IV (1499-1565), had varying feelings of antisemitism. Pope Pious made the following statement: The Jews who deny that Messiah has come and that He is God, lies. Herod is the devil, the Jews demons; that one is King of the Jews, this one the King of demons.

Antisemitism in America

Peter Stuyvesant, the first governor of Manhattan, was strongly antisemitic, constantly seeking ways to disqualify the Jews from public benefits to make them feel unwelcome. He referred to them as repugnant, blasphemers of Christ, and “Christ Killers.” He wrote the following in the 1650’s:

We have, for the benefit of this week and newly developing place and the land in general, deemed it useful to require them (the Jews) in a friendly way to depart; also praying most seriously in this connection, for ourselves as also for the general community of your worships, that the deceitful race – such hateful enemies and blasphemers of the name of Christ – be not allowed to infect further and trouble this new community.”

In the 1920s, Harvard and Yale began to restrict Jewish acceptances in response to the fact that they had been outperforming their Gentile classmates. At Yale, Dean Frederick Jones got the administration to consider “character” in addition to scholarship. He stated, “In terms of scholarship and intelligence, Jewish students lead the class, but their characteristics make them markedly inferior.” His perceived solution to this character flaw would be conversion to Christianity.

A Kingdom That Endures Forever

When Israel was finally recognized as a nation by the world in 1948, the Jews had just experienced the extermination of 6 million of its own, nearly 1/3 of the world’s Jewish population, by the Nazis. Immediately after May 14, 1948, five surrounding Arab nations declared war on the fledgling nation and this condition has defined Israel’s history since. The six-day war in 1967 and the Yom Kippur War of 1973 were intended to destroy Israel completely, but miraculously, Israel ended up adding territory in both wars. Israel has demonstrated throughout modern times that it is only interested in co-existing with Arabs, but the Moslem nations surrounding Israel, for the most part, are not interested in negotiating a lasting peace; their primary motive is in its destruction.

In the end, God will use all of the persecutions and other unfair attacks against the Jews to bring them to a knowledge of their Messiah. Israel and the Jews will be on center stage as the Kingdom Age is established by the Messiah.

Why We Believe Jesus is Son of God

Especially around the end of each year, when Christians celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ, we need more than ever to be sure about who He is. Was Jesus just a wise man who made the news headlines over two thousand years ago for speaking out against the rulers of the day? Was He a prophet with a direct line to God? Or was He indeed the Christ, our Savior, the Messiah?

Jesus knew it was vital His followers had no doubt about His identity. He asks them directly:

But who do you say that I am? Peter replies: “You are the Messiah.” (Luke 9:20)

We need to be as unequivocally certain as Peter was.

Why does it matter what we believe?

Believing Jesus is the Son of God, a member of the Holy Trinity, validates many of the key principles of our faith. We can be certain Jesus is God’s solution for this fallen world; that He is the only Way to salvation; that His sacrifice on the cross and His resurrection brings us into good standing with God and eternal life.

In this article, we share Scripture that firmly establishes Jesus as the Son of God, and God Himself. As believers, we find truth and confirmation in the pages of the Bible, the authoritative Word of God.

For those who have a tough time believing the Bible, there are countless historical facts and testimonies that have stood the test of time, collaborating these truths. If you, or someone you love grapple with this, do not be afraid to explore some of these trusted resources that bring one to the very same truth. Sometimes the Holy Spirit uses science or history to lead people to God!

Proof Jesus is the Son of God found in the Bible

  1. The Father publicly proclaimed Jesus as His Son

Not once, but twice God audibly spoke to people in a very public setting, claiming Jesus as his son, first at Jesus’ baptism with John the Baptist, and again on the mountain where Jesus was transfigured.

…the heavens opened to him, and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and alighting on him. And a voice from heaven said, “This is my Son, who I love. I am very pleased with him.” (Matthew 3:16-17)

…suddenly a bright cloud overshadowed them, and from the cloud a voice said, “This is my Son, who I love. I am very pleased with him. Listen to him!” (Matthew 17:1-8)

  1. Jesus identifies Himself as God

In John 8:25, the Jews ask Jesus, “Who are you?” In His response, He uses language they would understand, words that connect his identity with how God has always identified Himself to them:

“Truly, truly, I say to you, before Abraham was, I am.” (John 8:58)

  1. Others agree!

People who encountered Jesus, including the prophets of the Old Testament, His disciples and especially the authors of the books of the Bible, made claims in terms of his divinity by (1) applying divine names to Him, (2) ascribing divine attributes to Him, and (3) telling of the myriad of divine works He performed.

His divine names

The prophet Isaiah proclaimed the Lord’s deity and oneness with the Trinity in Isaiah 9:6:

For a child is born to us, a son is given to us. The government will rest on his shoulders. And he will be called: Wonderful Councilor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.

In Romans 9:5, the apostle Paul says of Jesus:

Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob are their ancestors, and Christ himself was an Israelite as far as his human nature is concerned. And he is God, the one who rules over everything and is worthy of eternal praise! Amen.

And finally,

The Son is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation. (Colossians 1:15)

His divine attributes


In the beginning the Word already existed. The Word was with God, and the Word was God. He existed in the beginning with God. (John 1:1-2; also Isaiah 9:6, Revelation 1:8, 22:13)


Then Jesus came to them and said, “All authority/power in heaven and on earth has been given to me.” (Matthew 28:18; also Isaiah 9:6, Philippians 3:21, Revelation 1:8)


And knowing their thoughts Jesus said to them… (Matthew 12:25)

But he knew what they were thinking, and he said to the man… (Luke 6:8; also John 2:24-25, 21:17, Revelation 2:23)

Sharing the same attributes as the Father

For in Christ all the fullness of the Deity lives in bodily form. (Colossians 2:9)

Immutable (unable to change, forever the same)

He also says, “In the beginning, Lord, you laid the foundations of the earth, and the heavens are the work of your hands. They will perish, but you remain; …but you remain the same, and your years will never end.” (Hebrews 1:10-12)

His divine works

The New Testament brims with stories of the wonderous miracles Jesus performed, instances where He changed lives dramatically and, most often, publicly with many witnesses in tow to spread the Good News. While sceptics try to discredit His acts as if it were mere trickery, there are works that leave no doubt as to the divine power of Jesus Christ.

In Jesus’ own words:

Do not believe me unless I do the works of my Father. But if I do them, even though you do not believe me, believe the works, that you may know and understand that the Father is in me, and I in the Father. (John 10:37-38)

Let us explore a few of his specific powers or responsibilities … and stand in awe:

Jesus forgives the sins of man and gives eternal life

When Jesus told the paralyzed man in Mark 2:5-12, “Son, your sins are forgiven,” the teachers of the law was upset and asked, “Who can forgive sins but God along?” They had a point; but they did not grasp that the Man before them was indeed God. Jesus knew what they were thinking (His omniscience in play) and answered (v10):

“But I want you to know that the Son of Man has authority on earth to forgive sins.” (Also Matthew 9:2-7, Colossians 3:13)

Jesus receives and answers prayers

No ambiguity here! Jesus invites his followers to ask (pray) and assures them that their prayers will be answered–by Him!

You may ask me anything in my name, and I will do it. (John 14:14)

Christ created, upholds, and preserves all things

All things!

For in Him all things were created…. All things have been created through him and for him. He is before all things, and in him all things hold together. (Colossians 1:17)

Spend a bit of time here. What does it mean to you, personally, when you read that He holds all things together?

Jesus’ role in the resurrection

We have read about his immutability, the fact that He is Lord yesterday, today and will be tomorrow. He is also part of the final scenes of the world as we know it:

…who, by the power that enables him to bring everything under his control, will transform our lowly bodies so that they will be like his glorious body. (Philippians 3:21)

In the presence of God and of Christ Jesus, who will judge the living and the dead… (2 Timothy 4:1)

Having read that, what else can we do but pray: “In the presence of God and of Christ Jesus, we bow in awe and thankfulness. You are mighty and worthy and we praise you as the forever true Almighty God and King of our lives. Amen.”