FRIDAY MORNING MANNA  

Biblical Numerology: NUMBER SEVEN Part 1

Repetition and Enlargement:

Divine Principles & Laws Seen in Creation and Prophecy

 

    Remember the Sabbath day to keep it holy. Six days shalt thou labor and do all thy work but the seventh day is the Sabbath of the Lord thy God. Exo. 20:8.

   “For in six days the Lord made the heavens and the earth, the sea and all that in them is and rested the seventh day. Wherefore the Lord blessed the Sabbath day and hallowed it.” v  11.

Some may say, “Hold it right there. You are preaching to the choir who already know all that stuff.” Perhaps. But didn’t Jesus, after His baptism, followed by His victorious 40-day struggle with Satan in the wilderness of temptation, first begin His ministry of preaching, teaching, healing, and performing miracles, confirming Him as the promised Messiah, to His own people, the Jews, direct descendants from the loins of Abraham, the first Jew before ministering to the Gentiles?  Didn’t He instruct His first Twelve and then the seventy disciples:  “Go first to the lost sheep of Israel before going to the Gentiles?” “To the Jew first, then to the Gentiles.” Matt. 10: 5; Rom. 1: 16, etc .

Maybe, just maybe some of us who claim to be the “spiritual Jews” may pick up one or two things here and there, or refresh our understanding of this familiar subject/doctrine from this discourse. It might interest one to know that the term “Gentile” was applied early in the church’s history to the idolatrous people who worshipped the sun Notice:

Quoted from Facts of Faith by Christian Edwardson, p. 100:

      “Professor Gilbert Murray, M.A., D.Litt., LL.L. D., F.B.A., Professor of Greek in Oxford University, says:

      ‘Now since Mithras was ‘The Sun,’ the Unconquered,’ and the Sun was ‘The royal Star,’ the religion looked for a King whom it could serve as a representative of Mithras upon earth: . . .  The Roman Emperor [who later on transferred his ‘seat, great power and authority’ to the Bishop of Rome’] seemed to be clearly indicated as the true King. In sharp contrast to Christianity, Mithraism recognized Caesar as the bearer of divine Grace, and its votaries filled the legions and the civil service . . . It had so much acceptance that it was able to impose on the Christian world its own Sun-Day in place of the Sabbath, its Sun’s birthday, twenty-fifth December, as the birthday of Jesus.’—‘ History of Christianity in the Light of Modern Knowledge,’ Chap.III; cited in ‘Religion and Philosophy,’ pp. 73, 74, New York: 1929.

     “Rev. William Frederick likewise states the same historic fact:

           ‘The Gentiles were an idolatrous people who worshipped the sun, and Sunday was their most sacred day. Now, in order to reach the people in this new field, it seems but natural, as well as necessary, to make Sunday the rest day of the church.” – ‘Sunday and the Christian Sabbath”, pp. 169, 170; quoted in Signs of the Times, Sept. 6, 1927.

CTAM 110-113

In the chapter “The Scriptures Are Written Upon the Principle of Enlargement by Repetition,” the late Australian evangelist, scholar, and, and author, Louis F. Were, in his book “The Certainty of the Third Angel’s Message, wrote for the encouragement,  edification, and enlightenment of all sincere and thorough Bible students:

     “Jesus warned against the use of ‘vain repetitions.’ Matt. 6: 7. Instances of vain repetitions by the heathen are given in 1 Kings 18: 26; Acts 19: 34. But the Divine Teacher employed useful repetitions. God selected the Hebrew nation to proclaim His truth, and they expressed themselves by repetition—the repetition being an enlargement of that which preceded it. Illustrations of this will be seen in such texts as Isa. 1; 10, 16: 28: 23; 41: 8; 44: 1-3, etc. In these, and the many other instances in the Scriptures, we notice that the repetition is not ‘vain,’ for it is used to explain and enlarge upon what has been already said.

     “The Rev. W.P. Wilkinson, M.A., in his ‘Personal Names in the Bible,’ p. 17, says:—-‘According to the genius of Hebrew poetry, when words or phrases of substantially the same import occur in two parallel or antithetical clauses, the variation of the second from the first consists of its beingexplanatory, or expansive, or augmentative of the notion which h the fist contains.’

    “Bruce Barton, in ‘The Book Nobody Knows,’ p. 41, says:—

          “Hebrew poetry does not consist of rhyme or meter, but in balance of thought, a Parallelism. One line says a thing, and the next repeats it with slight and skilful variations.’

     “The Bible is not only full of enlarging repetitions in individual verses, but it is full of explanatory repetitions in parables [there are 40 recorded  in the Bible] , sermons, prophecies, history, etc.

      The Crescendo Plan. “Bible themes are written upon the crescendo plan. The earlier books lay the foundations for later developments. The details accumulate until, like an artist dipping his brush in different colors, a complete picture is produced. To change the metaphor, the seeds of truth planted in Genesis grow to large plants in later books. ‘The path of the just is as the shining light, that shineth more and more unto the perfect day.’ Prov. 4: 18. The Bible is written on this growing plan.

     “Christ’s miracles were performed on this accumulative method. He raised 3 people from the state of death—a child, a youth, and a fully grown man. And progressive conditions are also observed in the details of the Scriptural narratives—the girl was in bed, having just died: the young man had been dead some time and was on the way to the cemetery; while the fully grown man [Lazarus] was decomposed in his grave [for 4 days. The Jews and Moslems do not practice embalming to this day].

    The Error of Two Creations. “The second chapter of Genesis enlarges on the important phases of the story of creation given in the first chapter. Some are confused over what they term the ‘two creations’ brought to view in these two chapters. Some say that in chapter 1 of Genesis a ‘pre-Adamic’ creation is referred to, whereas Genesis 2 presents the creation of Adam. This error occurs as false teachings originate namely, by not heeding the Divine laws of interpretation—in this instance, the law of repetition and enlargement.

    “The erroneous teachings of evolution are based partly on the fact that in living things upon the earth there is a gradation of species from the lower to the higher forms of life.       From the similarity of design and structure materialists suppose that the higher species have evolved from the lower.

    “A failure to understand the Creator’s laws of repetition and enlargement leads to this error.

    “In the Genesis record of creation week we see we see how God commences with the lowest forms of life and worked through to man—the highest. Certainly there is a gradation of species—-the higher forms of life do appear as improvements on the lower forms of life—but the first object of His creation is just as perfect as the last thing He has created!

     “To His creative and redemptive work, God commences from the lower and goes to the higher. He leads us from the material things to the spiritual: from our earthly abode to our heavenly. ‘The path of the just is as a shining light that shineth more and more unto the perfect day.’ Prov. 4: 18.

       [Redemption is a spiritual recreation of the heart. Realizing his great transgression in his sin against Bathsheba and her husband, Uriah the Hittite, David thoroughly repented and pleaded to God, “Create in me a clean heart, O God, and renew a right spirit within me.” Ps. 51: 10].

     “God’s method expressed in creation and revelation is that of working on the ‘more and more’ plan—keeping the best wine until the last. John 2: 10. In the Scriptures, we see the Gospel of John—the Gospel which especially reveals Christ’s divinity—and the Revelation—the most intricate and embracing of the prophetic books—kept till the last! The description of the glorious new world—the best of all God’s creation [and fullest and complete redemption of all that was lost through sin]—is reserved until the end of the Bible! Revelation, chapters 21, 22.”

      “The 7th day Sabbath came at the end of the six days of labor. Gen. 2: 1, 2; Exo. 20: 8-11. The 7thyear Sabbath came at the end of the six years of work. Lev. 25: 2-7. ‘And thou shalt number seven sabbaths of years unto thee, seven times seven years: and the space of seven sabbaths of years shall be unto thee forty and nine years. Then shalt thou cause the trumpet of the jubilee to sound . . . . and ye shall hallow the fiftieth year.’ Lev. 25: 8-13.

      “The 1,000 years of the earth’s desolation [the Biblical millennium]—the earth’s sabbath [or rest]—-comes at the end of the of 6,000 years of labor [the fallen earth is only 6,000 years old, certainly not “millions” much less “billions years” old as evolutions hold].

      “In brief, we see that at the close of six days of labor [in creation] came the weekly Sabbath [the memorial of creation]: after six years of labor came the yearly sabbath: at the end of ‘seven times seven years’  came the year of jubilee.  At the close of 6,000 years comes the millennium. These illustrate God’s system of enlargement—a system discerned throughout Scripture.”

     “The prophecies which follow Daniel [chapter] 2 are but the enlargements of this foundational prophecy: the prophecy of Daniel 7 covers the same course of history as that covered in chapter 2: this is again repeated in the prophecies of Daniel 8 and 9, and again in chapters 10 to 12. But with each repetition additional truths are brought to view. In the book of Revelation, also, we see the same principle.

     “The Revelation is the consummation of all preceding books. ‘In the Revelation all the books of the Bible meet and end.” AA 583-586. It contains 550 references to Old Testament passages. The Revelator [Christ Himself] repeats the past in prophesying the future—the past is repeated, but enlarged upon. The New Testament contains 1, 500 quotations of sentences and phrases from the Old Testament. The New Testament writers go over the history of the past, building on it in relation to the present and future.

    “In the deliverance of the children of Israel at the Red Sea is a type of the deliverance of the [faithful members of the commandment-keeping remnant] church at the end of human history. Rev. 15: 1-3. The record of every succeeding deliverance of God’s people adds details concerning the final deliverance of His people at the time of the outpouring of the 6th plague, when He completely overthrows the enemies of spiritual Israel at [the Battle of] ‘Armageddon’ “ –  Certainty of the Third Angel’s Message, pp. 112, 113.

Let’s close with this precious thought:

     “The Sabbath was hallowed at creation. As ordained for man, it had its origin when ‘the morning stars [angels] sang together, and all the sons of God shouted for joy.’ Job 38: 7. Peace brooded over the world; for earth was in harmony with heaven. ‘God saw everything that He had made, and behold, it was very good;’ and He rested in the joy of His completed work.

      “Because He rested upon the Sabbath, ‘God blessed the seventh day, and sanctified it,’—set it apart to a holy use. He gave it to Adam as a day of rest. It was a memorial of the work of creation, and thus a sign of God’s power and His love.”- E. G. White, Desire of Ages, p. 281.

                                                                                                            (Continued next week)