LMOT-1 - Genesis: God's Book of Beginnings

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Transcript

LIVING MESSAGES OF THE OLD TESTAMENT
“Living Messages of the Old Testament: Lesson 1- Genesis”

Introduction by narrator accompanied by a cappella singing:
THE GOSPEL OF CHRIST. Spreading the soul-saving message of Jesus. And now,
Ben Bailey.

“In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth,” Genesis
1:1.
Welcome to our study of living messages of the Old Testament. In
this series of lessons we want to do several things. Think about Genesis 1.
Look at the great characters! God's hand of creation! We want to familiarize
ourselves with the book. In these lessons, more importantly, we want to ask
what does Genesis, what does Exodus, what do these great books of the
Old Testament teach us today? How can they help me to live for God and
live for Christ better? Friend that's exactly what the New Testament says
these books can do. Romans 15:4 says ‘the things that were written
aforetime, specifically the old covenant the Old Testament, was written for
our learning that we through patience and comfort might find hope these
Scriptures.’ These Old Testament lessons can teach us great lessons
about God, about man, and about the hope that we have as a child of God.
We want to see Christ in the Old Testament. It is been said that if you
don't see Christ in the Old Testament, you've missed the whole point. That
is so true. The Bible teaches us in Galatians 3:24-26 that the law was our
tutor bringing us up to Christ. Romans chapter 7 says ‘Christ is the
completion or the end of the law.’
The great book of Genesis will teach us many practical lessons and
will see glimpses and pictures of Christ along the way.

As we think about the book itself, the key word and the key phrase in
the book of Genesis would be the word ‘beginning’ or ‘in the beginning.’ It's
all about origins. You've got the beginning of man, the beginning of the
world, the beginning of language; the beginning of sin- a host of things
began with this great book. It's about origins or beginnings. The key verse
of Genesis would be Genesis 3:15. This is really pointing us even at the
early stages toward Christ himself. I want you notice what Genesis 3:15
said. The Scripture says and, “I,” God speaking, “will put enmity between
you and the woman and between your seed and her seed. He shall bruise
your head, and you shall bruise his heel.” Here God's talking to that
serpent, to Satan. He says, ‘I'm to put division enmity between you, the
seed of woman is going to bruise your head’- there's that deathblow-dealt
by the seed of woman- none other than Jesus Christ Himself.
In the initial stages we see that hope. We see God working toward
salvation. A key chapter to the book of Genesis would be Genesis chapter
3. In chapter 3, Adam and Eve are in the luscious garden. They have
everything they need. They have everything they want. God gives them
everything they need, but they decide they need more. They will ‘be like
God,’ and so they eat of that forbidden fruit. Sin enters the world, and God
begins to plan for hope from that time forward.
To outline the book of Genesis we could say that Genesis uniquely
divides into two categories. You have the book of beginnings- Genesis 1
through 11. There we have multiple origins, multiple things that start, man,
creation the world, marriage, sin, languages, and the flood. Then you have
the book of the patriarchs- Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, and Joseph- Genesis
12 through Genesis chapter 15. It is so very unique and very easy way to
remember the book of Genesis.
There are great events that occur in this first category. It is the book
of beginnings. There are 4 things that are very unique to this section. You
have got the creation- friends this world that we live in is not an accident. It
did not start by evolution. There was no big bang somewhere. There wasn’t
somehow out of some cesspool of nothing, ever came to existence. The
world was created by supernatural power, by the power of God. God spoke
and the world came into existence. God said, ‘Let there be light,’ and there
was light. God said, ‘Let us make man in our image,’ and man became a
living being, Genesis 1:26-27. The first powerful event is the creation of all
things.

Then as God has created man, man enters into sin. Genesis 3 and 4
we have the sin of Adam and Eve entering into the world. They see that
forbidden fruit. They look at its beauty. They think that will make them like
God. They see that it will make them wise, and so as they eat of that they
break God's commandments. Sin there enters into the world.
Now we're not talking about Adamic sin, where because of Adam, all
of us are now sinners, but they open the door. In Romans 5:12 says that all
of us have gone through that same door. All sin, Romans 3:23, Romans
5:12.
Then the world became so steeped in sin, so wicked in iniquity that
God decided He had enough. Genesis 5 through 10 we have where God
now is ready to destroy man. Man has become wicked. Yet Genesis
chapter 6 tells us that ‘Noah found grace in the eyes of the Lord.’ Noah and
his family are told to build that great ark. God sends the flood. God rescues
them. From Noah and his descendants, pointed again towards Christ, the
rest of humanity comes.
Then you have the event in Genesis chapter 11- the Tower of Babel.
The people have become proud again. They want to be like God. They
begin to build this big tower, and God begins languages to confuse them to
show them He still in control. He is still in power.
The initial chapters of Genesis show us God's power, but they show
us the mistakes that man began to make- and here we see the glimpses of
Jesus coming through.
Then in Genesis 12 through 50 that second category, the book of the
patriarchs, we now have mention 4 great figures that we’ll see through the
rest of this book. Abraham- friend of God, great man to whom the promises
are made. His son Isaac- that son of promise. Jacob who from his first day,
first moment into the world had his hand wrapped around his brother’s
ankle hand and has always been trying to pull himself up. Then Joseph,
that great man of God, who trusted God's providence, whom God worked
through to save his family and who we see is a great servant in the house
of God.

As we think about these 4 men, Abraham stands out as a great friend
of God. When we think about Abraham, what do we think about? We think
about a man who trusted God. Can you imagine being in Abraham's
situation? God in essence says ‘Abraham pack your belongings put them in
the truck. When you get ready to go, I'll tell you where you are going.’
Could you do that? Do you have the faith? Do we have the trust of
Abraham? Look at the great promise God makes to Abraham in Genesis
12:1. The Bible says now the Lord said to Abram, “Get out of your country
from your family and from your father's house to a land that I will show you.
I will make you a great nation. I will bless you and make your name great
and you shall be a blessing. I will bless those who bless you, and I will
curse him who curses you. And in you all families of the earth shall be
blessed.” Abraham was a man of trust. God said ‘get up and go,’ and
Abraham went. He was willing to do exactly what God said.
Friends as we think about practical lessons, like Abraham I need to
trust God fully. I may not always be able to see the end. I may not know
how things will always work out. What do I know? I know who is in control.
Proverbs 3:5-6 says “Trust in the Lord with all your heart. Lean not on your
own understanding, acknowledge Him in all your ways, and He'll direct your
paths.” God's in control. God knows far better what I need. If I will only trust
God, take Him at His word, you can be sure God will always lead us in the
best direction.
Think about the words of Hebrews 13:5-6. The Scripture says, “Let
your life be without covetousness for he has said, the Lord has said, ‘I will
never leave you nor forsake you, so that you may boldly say the Lord is my
helper what can man do to me?’” How we today need to walk in the
footsteps of Jesus, 1 Peter 2:21. We need to have the mind of Christ,
Philippians 2:5. We need to trust God fully.
What else made Abraham a great man of God? Abraham was a
friend of God, because he obeyed God. There are so many people today
who think that they can have this warm, fuzzy feeling and that somehow
Jesus lives in their heart, and yet live an absolute disregard for what this
book says. Do I have to obey the will of God to be a friend of God? Listen
to what God said Abraham. Look in Genesis 26:4-5. The Scripture says,
God speaking, “I will make your descendants multiply as the stars of the
heaven. I will give your descendants all these land and in your seed all the
nations the earth shall be blessed.” Why? “Because Abraham obeyed My

voice, kept My charge, My commandments, My statues, and My law.” Here
God’s spoken Isaac and says ‘Look at what your father did. Here's the
reason all these blessings are going to happen.’ Friend if I'm going to be
blessed by God, if you're going to be blessed by God, you have to obey
Him there's no way around that.
Listen to what Jesus said. Jesus said, “If you love me, keep my
commandments,” John 14:15. Jesus said in Matthew 7:21 that “It's not
everybody that looks up into heaven and says ‘Lord, Lord’ that's going
there, but he who does the will of my Father in heaven.” Think about the
haunting question of Luke 6:46. Jesus said to the pious Pharisees “Why do
you call me ‘Lord, Lord’ and do not do the things which I say?” I'm
reminded the words of Hebrews 5:8-9. “Jesus is the author of eternal
salvation to all who obey Him.” If I'm going to please God, if I'm going to
learn lessons from these great texts of the Bible, friend I've got to learn I
must obey God to please Him. Then we notice the covenant that God made
with Abraham. I want you look at the words of Genesis chapter 15 and see
this great promise, this great contract we might say that God makes with
Abraham. Beginning in verse 4 the Scripture says, “And behold the word of
the Lord came to him saying ‘this one shall not be your heir,’ speaking of
Ishmael, ‘but one will come from your own body shall be your heir.’ Then he
brought him outside and said, ‘Look now toward heaven count the stars if
you're able to number them.’ And he said to him, ‘So shall your
descendants be.’” Here's that great statement. He believed in the Lord, and
he accounted to Him for righteousness. Now friends there is no direct
descendent of Abraham and Sarah. That promise has been made to them
and yet before the child is born, because of who God is and because of
what God's done, Abraham believed God. It doesn't mean he just knew. He
trusted to the point he was willing to change his life and live that way.
We talk about God making a covenant or promise, hasn't God done
that with us? 1 John 2:25 says this is the promise- He's promised us
eternal life. The Scripture says John chapter 14, Jesus said “I'm going to
prepare a place for you. And if I go to prayer place for you, I'll come again
and receive you to myself that where I am there you may be also.” There's
a promise. God's promised that those who walk in the light, 1 John 1:7,
those who are washed in the blood of the Lamb, Romans 6:1-4, and those
who live a life of purity can one day live in heaven.

If I will believe in Him, if I'll change my life to the point that I faithfully
follow God every day, just as sure as Abraham became the father of many
nations, so we can inherit that wonderful place called heaven.
As we think about Abraham-great man of God, friend of God, one
who obeyed God's voice-Abraham had a weakness. Genesis 12:10
following, he was afraid of what others might do to him because of the
beauty of his wife and lied. He did the same thing in Genesis 20:2. He
again becomes afraid of what's going to happen to him and what people
want to do them, and so he lied. Abraham, although he was a friend of
God, had a problem and that problem was he was afraid to tell the truth- or
at least he told half-truths and half lies at different times in his life.
When we think about Abraham, we also need to realize that none of
us are above sin. Abraham was a great man of God and yet he made
mistakes we too make. Let's realize today we all sin and fall short of the
glory of God, Romans 3:23. Let's realize that the wages of our sin is death.
As I think about Abraham, his powerful example, I realize as well that
Abraham was separated from God at times because of sin. The Bible says
in Isaiah 59:1-2 “The Lord's ears not heavy that He cannot hear. His arms
not shortened that He cannot save, but your sins and your iniquities have
separated you from your God.” “The soul who sins shall surely die,” Ezekiel
18:4.
Then we think about Isaac, the child of promise. Isaac has the same
promise given to him just as his father Abraham did. He believes that and
yet at times Isaac also made mistakes just like his father did. He also had
little trouble with lying as well, and yet God worked through these men. He
worked through Isaac to bring the seed promise. That same promise is
reiterated to Abraham in Genesis 22:17-18, ‘that through his seed- who is
Isaac- he will bless all nations.’ Isaac now is the one that God is working
through to bring the promised Messiah into the world. That son of promise,
you remember Isaac. God said, ‘take your son, your only son, up to the
mountain and sacrifice him.’ Do you remember the journey up the
mountain? As they're going up the mountain, the lad asked ‘Here's the
wood. Where's the Lamb?’ You remember Abraham's response. ‘God will
provide.’ Abraham was so convinced that Isaac was the son of promise that
according to Hebrews chapter 11 that even if he killed him, he believed
God would raise him from the dead. Abraham and Isaac- great men of God
whom God was working through!

Then we have Jacob and Esau. Jacob is a great character in the Old
Testament in that he was willing to pull himself up by his bootstraps we
might say. He comes out of the womb, his brothers ahead of him and yet
he comes out and his hand is around Esau's ankle. From that time forward,
he's trying to get God's blessing. He's trying to get a leg up we might say.
God uses Jacob in His plan and for his purpose as you see throughout the
Old Testament.
Then of course we have Joseph as well. Joseph would be that fourth
and great character in the book of Genesis through whom God's
providence worked. You remember the story of Joseph. Joseph is the
youngest. His brothers are jealous of him because of some of the visions
that he has. His brothers at an opportune time take him. They throw him in
a pit. They take his coat, put blood on it, and give it back to his father. His
father now believes he's dead. He's left in that pit initially, but then a band
of Midianites comes along. His brothers begin to see dollar signs. They get
him up out of that pit. They sell him to the Midianites. He is sold into slavery
pretty much. That band of Midianites goes into Egypt, and lo and behold
Potiphar who is second in command of Pharaoh, buys Joseph. He is in
Potiphar's house. He rises up to up a great status. Then Potiphar’s wife
begins to look at Joseph with longing eyes. Every day it says she begins to
test him and tempt him. ‘Lie with me.’ He won't do that. He leaves his
garment in her hand and runs out of the house. She's embarrassed and
cries rape. Joseph is still determined to do the right thing. He now ends up
in prison. The Butler, the Baker there, Joseph is there and he interprets
certain visions and dreams. Before you know it he's gotten out of the
prison, and he is second in command only to Pharaoh himself. He now has
an opportunity not just to be an example in Egypt, but to save his own
family in the midst of the famine.
Genesis 50:20 is a great verse about Joseph and his faithfulness.
Joseph looking back at all the events that have occurred says to his
brothers, ‘You meant it for evil; God turned it out for good.’ God is able to
take that which we may see as evil and bad, Romans 8:28 says ‘He works
all things together for good to those who love the Lord and those who are
called according to His purpose.”
Let's look at that third aspect. I want to see in these living messages
of the Old Testament where we see Christ in the book of Genesis. I know

Christ hasn't come to the world yet. I know we're not in the New Testament
age where Christ lived. Is Christ in the book of Genesis?
You bet he is! He's there at the very beginning! Remember that great
passage Genesis 1:1? “In the beginning God created the heavens and the
earth.” Did you know that Jesus was an active agent in creation? John 1:1
the Scripture says “In the beginning was the Word and the Word was with
God and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things
were made through Him and without Him nothing was made that was made
in Him was life, and that life was the light of man. Just like Colossians 1:15
Jesus is there at creation. God is using Him in that process. We see His
hand in creation. We see Jesus as the ultimate seed of woman. The
promise made to Abraham that promise transcends through Isaac, that
promise works through many people but the promise ultimately is through
Christ. In Genesis 3:15 God says ‘The seed of woman will crush the head
of Satan.’ Who's that talking about? Look at Galatians 3:16. The Scripture
says, “Now to Abraham and to his seed were the promises made and he
does not say and to seeds as of many, but as of one,” and notice, “and to
your seed who is Christ.”
The promise made Genesis 3:15, the promise made in Genesis
chapter 12, Genesis chapter 22:17-18, that same promise ultimately made
to David in 2 Samuel 7:12-14-who is that all about? “Seed as of one, and to
your seed who is Christ.” We see Christ as the ultimate seed of woman,
both God and man, humanity and deity, coming to earth to destroy the
works of Satan.
Then we see Christ in Genesis chapter 12 as that great promise is
made to Abraham. Who fulfills that promise? Well the Jews view that
promise as fulfilled. They viewed the land promise the land of Canaan as
the ultimate rest and the blessing that Abraham gave to the Israelite nation.
Such is not the case according to Galatians 3:29. The Scripture says this
“And if you are Christ then you are Abraham's seed and heirs according to
the promise.” What promise? That promise that he would bless all nations
wasn't just the land promise. That's the promise blessing that if men and
women live faithful to God, Revelation 2:10 says ‘be faithful unto death and
I'll give you the crown of life.’ It's the ultimate hope we have of heaven. I
don't have to be a Jew. I don't have to be a descendent of Abraham. If I'm a
child of God, I have just as much right and just as much hope to that great
promise God will bless me and bless you just as he did the Israelites as

they followed him.
There's one more picture of Christ we want to see. That's in Genesis
49:10. Notice what the Scripture says here. The Bible says, “The scepter
shall not depart from Judah nor a lawgiver from between his feet until
Shiloh comes and to him shall be the obedience of the people.” Here is that
great promise that the scepter, the lawgiver, is going to come. He's going to
come from Judah. Hebrews 7 says it's evident our Lord came out of Judah.
Jesus is of the tribe of Judah, and He is the lawgiver. He gave us the great
law of liberty today, James 1:21-22.
Jesus is still holding the scepter. The scepter is a symbol of kingship,
power, and authority. Jesus is right now reigning at the right hand of the
Father in heaven. As we thought about Genesis, a great book that tells us
God created us and that God wants to and is willing to bless us if we're
willing to follow Him faithfully- have you done that? Are you a child of God?
Why would you want to miss out on the hope and the joy of heaven?
Why would you want to miss out on all spiritual blessings that are ours in
Christ Jesus? Just like the great promises made to the patriarchs, we have
the promise of one day living with God in heaven forever. If you're not a
child of God, we encourage you today to become one.
The Bible says to become a Christian you first must hear God's word.
Romans 10:17 says ‘faith comes by hearing and hearing by the word of
God.’ Once you've heard this word and you realize it is God's truth, will you
then believe that? Jesus said in John 8:24 “Unless you believe that I'm he
you'll surely die in your sins.” Will you believe so much so that you change
your life and repent? Acts 3:19 Peter preached “Repent and turn again that
your sins may be blotted out.” Jesus said Luke 13:1-5, “Unless you repent
you will all likewise perish.”
Repentance is a changed will that leads to a changed way. Would
you change way of thinking and change way of acting to God's way? Would
you make that great confession that the Ethiopian eunuch did? “I believe
Jesus is the Christ the Son of God,” Acts 8:36-39. Would you today be
baptized in water to have the hope of heaven?
Here's how plain Jesus made it. Jesus said, “He that believes and is
baptized will be saved. He that does not believe shall be condemned.”

The Bible teaches ‘baptism does now also save us.’
If you've not obeyed the gospel, we beg you today in view of the hope
of Christianity, the joy of living a life with real meaning and purpose- won't
you today make it right with God so that one day you can ultimately live in
heaven?

Study Questions for:

“Living Messages of the Old Testament: Lesson 1”
1. According to Genesis 1:1, who created the heavens and the earth?

2. What does Romans 15:4 say of the Old Testament?

3. What is the key verse in Genesis?

4. What 2 categories is Genesis divided into?

5. Why did God begin languages in Genesis chapter 11?

6. What does Proverbs 3:5-6 tell us to do?

7. According to John 14:15, what does Jesus say for us to do if we love
Him?

8. What promise did Jesus make to us in John 14?

9. According to Isaiah 59:1-2, what separates us from God?

10. According to Romans 8:28, what does God do in times of trouble for the
ones who follow Him?