Read 62.) Deuteronomy 16:1 thru 18:22. With today’s reading, we see two marvelous things. One will be in chapter 17, but the other, much more important, is seen in chapter 18. We begin with some of Israel’s Holy Days in chapter 16; Passover, Weeks and Tabernacles. We’ve read of these before, and saw them with the reading numbered 56 in Leviticus chapter 23, and then, again, in reading number 59 in Numbers chapters 28 and 29. It’s good to relate here, that a correspondence between Israel’s Holy Days and events relating to Messiah in the New Testament exist. The first is that Passover relates directly to the sacrificial death of Jesus, the Messiah, on the Cross. Fifty days later came the Feast of Weeks, or Pentecost, and was also the day, in Acts 2, when Jesus poured out the Holy Spirit, starting His Church. It is wondered whether His Return won’t also coincide with one of the other remaining Holy Days of Israel, which tend to fall the end of our summer period, or the early part of the fall season. For example, read of Tabernacles in 16:13-17 and ask if it wouldn’t express the idea of Jesus reaping and harvesting His own from out of the earth at His Second Coming! You can see that, can’t you? Perhaps this year!
Chapter 17 opens by relating the penalty for violation of the 1st and 2nd Commandments. See later how many will violate these very commands, and no one does a thing. It will ultimately become Israel’s downfall, as will be clearly prophesied in just a few more days reading. The amazing thing in chapter 17 is seen in verses 14 to the end. It is a prophecy. Israel will one day set a king over themselves! We will watch for this. It will be fulfilled about 254 years later. See the limitations prescribed to the king, and let us note whether these are ever followed, and what happens when they are not. It’s all a part of Israel’s story. Pride is the downfall of kings, but humility and obedience would establish a dynasty!
Then with chapter 18, the first part became the justification for the state churches of early Protestantism. The concept of separation of church from state was derived from the New Testament, where Jesus founded His Church as having no connection with any form of civil government in its day. A key passage begins with verse 15, and goes thru 19. This is the 5th prophecy of Messiah. From Genesis 3:15, He would be human man born of a woman and defeat the serpent. From Genesis 12:3, and to Isaac and Jacob, He would be of their lines. Then, in Genesis 49:10, He would be from Judah. The fourth was found in Numbers 24:17, by Balaam, and how that Messiah would be rise to be a ruler out of Israel, and which drew the Magi of Matthew 2. Here, He is referred to as the Prophet Who would be like unto Moses unto Israel, and so Jesus was, when He came to them 1,400 years later. They had to listen to Him, or they would be called to account… they did not listen, and called to account, they most certainly were! This, too, is what the Book is all about!
Harold F Crowell