Through the Bible with Les Feldick
LESSON 2 * PART 3 * BOOK 78
PART 1 of the MESSIANIC PROPHECIES – Part 3
Psalms 2, 8, and 16
Okay, it is good to have everybody back, again; and you’ve had your break. For those of you joining us on television, we’re just an informal Bible study. We like to compare Scripture with Scripture primarily. My main reason for using so much of Scripture is to prove to the scoffers that this is a supernatural Book unlike anything else on Earth. All you have to do is study it, and it becomes obvious. But most of the world will not do that.
We’re especially looking at Psalms for a few programs. I know we’ve had a lot of requests over the years to teach some Psalms. Today, a gentleman just told me that he was moved a month or two ago to start studying Psalms. So he’s appreciating today.
All right, we’re going to pick right up where we left off in the idea of the Messianic Psalms. There are sixteen chapters throughout the Book of Psalms that deal quite completely with the death, burial, and resurrection. Now I’m going to jump up to the next one, which is Psalms chapter 16. We just finished chapter 8. If you’ve noticed in your Bible—I’m sure they all have it—that it’s called a Michtam of David. A Michtam was something that was actually set in stone, and it was a prayer of David. There are several of them throughout the Book of Psalms that were engraven, and they, too, were primarily concerned with Christ and His resurrection.
Psalms 16 was just that. It was engraved in stone of some sort—much like the Ten Commandments, I guess—and it became a prayer concerning the death and resurrection of Christ. Now the first several verses we’re not going to make comment on. We’ll just drive right on down until we get to the part where, again, I can show from the New Testament proof-positive that we’re talking about His death, burial, and resurrection. This will be down in verse 10, where Peter quotes it in Acts chapter 2. But we don’t want to skip all these good verses. So if you’ll bear with me, we’ll just read them and realize that the underlying thought is resurrection.
“Preserve me, O God: for in thee do I put my trust.” Now, I’ve done this before. I’ll do it again. There are three words in Scripture that are all quite synonymous – trust is the Old Testament word. The New Testament words are primarily – faith and believe. You put the three of them together, and they all mean the same thing. When you believe, you’re trusting. When you’re trusting, you believe. And when you believe and trust, you’re exercising faith. Always remember that when the Old Testament speaks of this “I have put my trust,” it’s putting his faith. He believes it. Now verse 2:
“O my soul, thou hast said unto the LORD, Thou art my Lord: my goodness extendeth not to thee; 3. But to the saints that are in the earth, and to the excellent, in whom is all my delight.” Now the saints in the Earth in David’s vocabulary would have been what people? Well, it would have been Israel—the believing element in Israel—because the Gentiles for the most part had nothing to do with Israel. So, to the saints within the Earth, would have to be the believing remnant of Israel:
“…and to the excellent, in whom is all my delight.” Well, now it figures, doesn’t it? Who do you suppose David had the most real sincere fellowship with? The believers or the unbelievers? Well, naturally the believers.
It’s doesn’t matter where you are. Iris and I have gone all over the United States the last two months, and no matter where we go, we don’t hit strangers over five minutes. Why? Because they all love the same Lord that we do. And it is (even though we get tired) so thrilling to know that we have like-minded believers from Maine to California. And that’s just part of being members of the Body of Christ. All right, let’s read on.
“Their sorrows shall be multiplied that hasten after another god:…” Well, now what’s that taking about? The pagans and the idolaters in Israel. They can’t enjoy any of the blessings of the God of Abraham that David can. But on the other hand, their sorrows shall be more.
Now I can’t help this as I read these things. Other verses come to mind, and I have to use them. Turn with me to Jeremiah 44 to show that when David spoke of those who were adhering to other gods, he wasn’t necessarily speaking of the Gentile world. He was speaking of fellow Israelites. Jeremiah chapter 44 and this is why I use it as often as I do—the shocking experience that in Israel there was this much blatant pagan worship. And this, of course, is why God had to deal with them so severely over and over.
Come back to Jeremiah 44, so that we’ll know what David was referring to. Jeremiah isn’t that far removed from David. A couple of hundred years and Israel never did improve, so it all stayed the same. Now Jeremiah 44 and drop in at verse 15. We’ve done this before, but it’s been a long time ago.
“Then all the men who knew that their wives had burned incense (To whom?) other gods, (What were the other gods? The pagan gods and idols of the Gentiles. The men knew that their women were doing it. Did they do anything about it? No. They went right along with it.) and all the women that stood by, a great multitude, even all the people that dwelt in the land of Egypt, in Pathros, answered Jeremiah, saying,”
Now, you see, Jeremiah was God’s prophet. Jeremiah had been sent to warn Israel of coming judgment if they wouldn’t refrain from this open idolatry. And, you know, when we taught this—of course, that’s quite a long time ago—one of those valleys at which the Jewish people offered their little babies to the brazen fire god, Moloch, they actually called the Valley of Drums.
And do you remember what the reason was? In order to cover the screaming of their little babies as they laid them on that hard, white-hot god Moloch. To cover their screaming they would beat the drums. Awful! Beyond comprehension. God’s chosen people who should have known better. It’d be one thing for the pagan Gentiles, but here we have the Jews doing it. But here’s the evidence, see, verse 16:
“As for the word that thou hast spoken unto us in the name of the LORD, we will not hearken unto thee. (They knew that Jeremiah was a valid prophet. Do you see the rebelliousness here?) 17. But we will certainly do whatsoever thing goeth forth out of our own mouth, to burn incense unto the queen of heaven,…” Who’s the queen of heaven in antiquity? The female goddesses—Athena was one. There were several of them in various cultures. They all had the female goddess, which was usually the one that led into the most hideous immorality.
“…to burn incense unto the queen of heaven, and to pour out drink-offerings unto her, as we have done, we, and our fathers, our kings, and our princes, (See, they weren’t just a small minority.) in the cities of Judah, and in the streets of Jerusalem: for then (Now what a lie.) we had plenty of victuals (or food), and were well, and saw no evil. 18. But since we left off to burn incense to the queen of heaven, and to pour out drink-offerings unto her, we have wanted all things, (In other words, things haven’t been going well.) and have been consumed by the sword and by the famine.”
Well, what was the real reason? It was God’s chastisement upon them. And they couldn’t even recognize that. Now that’s how ridiculously ignorant people can become of the things of God. All right, verse 19:
“And when we burned incense to the queen of heaven, and poured out drink-offerings unto her, did we make cakes to worship her, and pour out drink-offerings unto her, without our men? 20. Then (the prophet) Jeremiah said unto all the people, to the men, and to the women, and to all the people which had given him that answer, saying,”
“The incense that ye burned in the cities of Judah, and in the streets of Jerusalem, ye, and your fathers, your kings, and your princes, and the people of the land, did not the LORD remember them, and came it not into his mind? 22. So that the LORD could no longer bear, because of the evil of your doings, and because of the abominations which ye have committed: therefore is your land a desolation, and an astonishment,…”
But they couldn’t even recognize that. And they rebelled totally against Jeremiah until finally the Babylonians came in. And from what I’ve read from ancient history, the Babylonians found Jeremiah in a deep, dark dungeon where the Jews had pitched him. They didn’t actually kill him, for a change. But they didn’t like the message, so they got rid of the messenger.
Well, this is the very thing that David is referring to in Psalms chapter 16. This is what he’s referring to—oh, my goodness, all of this other part of Israel that was contrary to the things of God. Now verse 4:
“Their sorrows shall be multiplied that hasten after another god: their drink-offerings of blood (Not the drink-offerings of the wine and so forth that God prescribed. But they are so wicked; they are so evil, much like Satan-worship is today—blood becomes a part of their worship.) will I not offer, nor take up their names into my lips. 5. The LORD is the portion of mine inheritance and of my cup: thou maintainest my lot. 6. The lines are fallen unto me in pleasant places; yea, I have a goodly heritage.” Because David was an obedient believer.
“I will bless the LORD, who hath given me counsel: my reins also instruct me in the night seasons. 8. I have set the LORD always before me: because he is at my right hand, I shall not be moved.” I think that’s a verse that sounds familiar. Now verse 9, we’re getting close to where I’m going to jump up to the New Testament.
“Therefore, my heart is glad, and my glory rejoiceth: my flesh also shall rest in hope.” Now what’s he talking about? Resurrection. The flesh will die. David died. His tomb is still remembered in Jerusalem, but David isn’t there in the tomb. The real David is in the presence of the Lord.
All right, now another verse comes to mind. Let’s see, I want to go Job. I think it is chapter 19. In Job 19 you have the same kind of language, written long before David. But it all fits. It’s still the same language. We’ll jump in at verse 25. This is the verse that first opened up to me about rightly dividing the Scriptures. You know, I’ve shared this, I think, with a lot of people over the years. I was under the typical denominational umbrella, teaching the denominational line obediently, you know. Then one day they asked me to come and teach a home Bible study in some other denominations. Actually, it was a Methodist couple and a Lutheran couple that asked Iris and me to come in one night a week and teach a home Bible class.
Well, it hadn’t been two or three weeks and the Methodist lady came up afterwards and she said, “Les, why isn’t Heaven taught in the Old Testament?” I said, “What?” She said, “Why isn’t Heaven taught in the Old Testament?” I said, “What do you mean?” She said, “Well, those Jews had no idea of dying and going to Heaven.” Well, I’d never considered that before. So I said, “Well, I don’t know. You’re throwing a new one on me, you know.” This is the first time they’d ever done this outside the church umbrella.
So anyway, for my study to prove the answer to her question, this is the first thing I came up with. Job doesn’t say a word about dying and going to Heaven. So, the lady was right. Well, that was a whole new opening for me in Scripture. And that’s what set the whole stage then – you deal with Israel as God’s earthly people. They had no concept of dying and going to Heaven. And you’ve got the Body of Christ who are God’s heavenly people. And that just opens everything up! All right, but now look what Job said. That’s what reminded me of it, verse 25.
“For I know that my redeemer liveth, and that he shall stand at the latter day upon the (Portals of heaven? No. Where?) upon the earth: (So what are we dealing in? Earthly things.) 26. And though after my skin worms destroy this body, yet in my flesh shall I see God:”
Now what’s he talking about? Physical death—when the body goes back to the dust of the Earth. He knew that much. But it doesn’t stop there. “… worms destroy this body, yet in my flesh I will see God.” Well, what kind of flesh? Resurrected flesh. A resurrected body.
And, good heavens, you all know that the Lord Jesus, after He came out of the tomb—for forty days He gave an example of what we have to look forward to. Why? Because He moved and ate and did everything in a resurrected body that didn’t look any different than the gardener. And you say, well, where’d you get that? Well, that’s what Mary thought He was.
Now I don’t know that gardeners looked like something from outer space, did they? No. They looked very common. They were working-class people. So we get this little bit of information in that forty days. And in those forty days, what did He do? He walked with them. He talked with them. He ate fish with them. All right, so now we have the concept of what Job already had way back here—that in the resurrected state, he would be in a physical body of flesh and bone. And though he had no concept of dying and going to Heaven, yet he certainly had the concept of resurrection life! All right, back to Psalms 16 once again to make a little headway. Okay verse 9, repeat it.
“Therefore my heart is glad, and my glory rejoiceth: my flesh also (That’s what made me think of Job.) shall rest in hope.” Because even though he goes back to the dust of the Earth, in resurrection power he’s going to come back with a body fit for all eternity. Whether it’s Old Testament believers, or whether it’s you and me in the Body of Christ.
All right, verse 10, now the scenario switches to prophecy. Because we’re going to show from the New Testament that this is God the Son speaking through the prophet David.
“For thou wilt not leave my soul in hell (or Hades); neither wilt thou permit thine Holy One to see corruption.” All right, now we’ve got to jump up to the New Testament and see where that is quoted by Peter on the day of Pentecost. This proves the point, then, that these Old Testament references are always to Jesus Christ as we know Him in the New. Now, we don’t refer to Him as Jesus Christ in the Old Testament. He’s God the Son. He’s the Anointed One. He’s the Messiah. But it’s the same person. We’re just in a different scenario of language.
All right, Acts chapter 2 and the day of Pentecost. I think I’ll go all the way up to verse 22, so that you get the flow. Peter is speaking to these thousands of Jews gathered in Jerusalem for the Feast of Pentecost—a Jewish feast day. So the terminology is as it should be.
“Ye men of Israel,…” Now, I’m the first to admit that a good portion of even dispensational Christendom maintain that this is already the Body of Christ Church. And I just don’t see how they see it. I don’t see how they can come to such a conclusion when there’s nothing in here to indicate the Body of Christ.
The thought of the Body of Christ hasn’t even been revealed yet. That won’t come until Paul’s apostleship. There is not one word with reference to a Gentile—even in the crowd here. It’s all Jews. The language is Kingdom language—not a word of the Gospel of Grace. But be that as it may, they can fault me all they want. I just say you’ve got to show me some Scripture, because I can’t find anything of the Gentile makeup whatsoever. So Peter said:
“Ye men of Israel, hear these words; Jesus of Nazareth, a man approved of God among you by miracles and wonders and signs, which God did by him in the midst of you, as ye yourselves also know:” That’s the three years of His earthly ministry.
Now you’ve got to remember, Pentecost was only fifty days after the resurrection. That’s only a matter of days past His earthly ministry. They all understood what He was talking about—performing signs and wonders and miracles. Now verse 23:
“Him, (this Jesus of Nazareth) being delivered by the determinate counsel and foreknowledge of God,…” Now you’ve heard me address that way back years ago. What’s He talking about? That way back in eternity past—before anything had ever been created—the Triune God came together and formulated this whole work of humanity, including the plan of redemption. Every aspect of it was all—blueprinted is the word I like to use.
It was all blueprinted. And Peter could say absolutely correctly that it was the foreknowledge of God that was able to cause the Old Testament writers to speak of His death, burial, and resurrection. God knew the end from the beginning. It wasn’t anything that He didn’t understand. And so the correct word is:
“…and foreknowledge of God, (According to that whole plan of redemption, you are in perfect accord with it.) ye have taken, and by wicked hands have crucified and slain: (But did that stop God? No. What did He do?) 24. Whom God hath raised up, having loosed the pains of death: because it was not possible that he should be holden of it.”
God the Son was God! Nothing could hold Him in the realms of death. Nothing. So the power of God raised Him from the dead, in spite of all that had just happened. All right, now here it comes. The stamp of approval that David was speaking of this very thing.
“For David speaketh concerning him, (Who? Jesus of Nazareth!) I foresaw the Lord always before my face, for he is on my right hand, that I should not be moved: 26. Therefore did my heart rejoice, and my tongue was glad; moreover also my flesh shall rest in (What?) hope:” What kind of hope? Resurrection!
My, I’m confident that the Lord’s going to come before very many of us pass off the scene. But if not and if we die, and we go to the grave, hey, that’s not the end. You know, I don’t have many funerals. But I’ve had a few over the years for some of our class people. And when we’re at the cemetery, the first thing I want to remind the family – your loved one isn’t here!
We don’t have to traipse back every day and weep over that grave. They’re not there! Where is that loved one? They’re with the Lord in Glory! And what’s going to happen to that body in the grave? One day it’s going to be resurrected and reunited with that soul and spirit. Once again, like Thessalonians says, to be a complete body, soul and spirit for eternity.
But, oh, whether it’s death, or whether it’s the hope of the Rapture, it’s still an eternal hope that the best is yet to come. All right, so here the Lord Jesus Christ is speaking through the prophet David way back here at 1,000 B.C.
Because thou wilt not leave my soul in hell,…” Now, that almost takes another hour of explanation, doesn’t it? The word hell here is from the two Greek words that are described better as Sheol and Hades. It was not the Lake of Fire Hell that we normally think of as the eternal place of the wicked. But this was the waiting place for the dead before Christ’s first advent.
If you’ll go into Luke 15, what do you have? You have Abraham with Lazarus in his bosom in Paradise. But they’re in Hades. On the other side of the great gulf fixed, you have the rich man who was in torment in Hades. All right, but on Resurrection morning Christ took the believing element out of Hades and took them up to Heaven, and Hell was enlarged so the rich man stayed there. So ever since, lost people still go to Hades. That’s what Jesus says over and over. The saved person now goes immediately from death to be present with the Lord in Glory. And that happened as result of the death, burial, and resurrection. We in the Body of Christ today get into the Body by believing only—what?—for our salvation. What do we believe? That Jesus died for our sins, was buried, and rose again, and is alive today!—I Corinthians 15:1-4.
But see, at this point in time, David, of course, didn’t understand about the Body of Christ. All David was looking forward to, was that the Messiah must suffer. That’s why we had it on the board. Still got it? The sufferings would be followed by what? The glory that would follow. And what would it follow? The death, burial, and resurrection.
All right, if you’ll come back with me to verse 27.
“Because thou wilt not leave my soul in Hell (Hades), neither wilt thou permit thine Holy One to see corruption.” Now then, we always have to be reminded. When Christ’s body lay three days and three nights in the tomb, did corruption set in? Not one whit. His body never saw corruption. And again, because it was a supernatural, divine birth and conception that Christ’s body did not see corruption. And that’s far different from the norm. But nevertheless, that’s the fact that we have to understand. He never saw corruption.