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Top Ten Old Testament Stories: #6 Joshua and the Walls of Jericho
TIMING: In the last story of the Exodus from Egypt we timed the life of Moses to approximately 1400-1201 B.C., and there we also mentioned that Joshua is the leader that took over after Moses to lead the Israelites into the promised land. What is incredibly exciting and interesting is that there is archeological evidence that dates the fall of Jericho to 1400 B.C., which is quite consistent with the biblical timeline (http://www.nytimes.com/1990/02/22/world/believers-score-in-battle-over-the-battle-of-jericho.html). The site was first discovered in 1868 by Charles Warren, and in the 1930’s John Garstang discovered the network of collapsed walls, but it was not until the 1980’s that carbon dating corroborated the historical timing of the ruins.   REASON TO READ: Without getting political, let us just say that sometimes a transition of leadership is challenging to an organization, regardless of whether it is a company, a nation, a church, or the descendants of Jacob wandering the desert in prehistoric times. It is remarkable that in the story of Joshua we have such an excellent model of transition of leadership, and in this article, after summarizing the events, we can discuss how Joshua is able to be a little different from Moses, while still serving in the same Spirit and maintaining the same credibility in leading the people of Israel.   BRIEF SUMMA...

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Noah - An Example of Righteousness
 "... Noah was a righteous man, who was perfect in his generation and well-pleasing to God." (Genesis 6:9) Continuing on with the Story of Noah, this verse raised many questions.  In a previous article we talked about The Righteousness of Noah.  In describing his righteousness, the above verse adds "in his generation".  Why did the bible need to say "perfect in his generation"?  Does this mean that perfection is relative?  Is perfection in Noah's generation different than todays? Certainly not!  Perfection is from God, and perfection is God.  Our Lord Jesus Christ in His sermon on the Mount teaches us saying "Therefore you shall be perfect, just as your Father in heaven is perfect." (Matthew 5:48).  Also, from St. Paul we know that "Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever." (Hebrews 13:8).  If God is Perfect, and we know that God is the same yesterday, today, and forever, then it must be the case that perfection is the same as well.  So now the question still remains, why did the verse add "perfect in his generation".  Also why did the verse need to add "well-pleasing to God" since it already said that he was a righteous and perfect man? The verse starts by saying that "Noah was a righteous man", then it goes on to explain this righteousness in two parts:  The first ...

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How to Gain God's Respect
In Genesis 4 verses 4 and 5 we read the following: "...The Lord respected Abel and his offering, but He did not respect Cain and his sacrifices." The question is: How did Abel gain God's respect? What did he do differently than Cain? "Now Abel was a shepherd of sheep, but Cain was a tiller of the ground. Now in the process of time Cain brought a sacrifice to the Lord from the fruits of the ground. Abel also brought a sacrifice from the firstborn of his flock and of their fat. The Lord respected Abel and his offering, but He did not respect Cain and his sacrifices..." (Genesis 4:3-5) Abel had faith and through his faith he understood the proper sacrifice. In Hebrews we read "By faith Abel offered to God a more excellent sacrifice than Cain..." (Hebrews 11:4) Abel by faith learned that a blood sacrifice had to be offered. Perhaps he observed the garments of skin that the Lord God made for Adam and Eve in Genesis 3:21. The skin garments had to have come from a blood sacrifice. Perhaps also he learned from his parents that they tried first to sew fig leaves together and that wasn't sufficient (Genesis 3:7). Abel's faith was one of the factors that caused him to gain God's respect. In Hebrews we also read that "...without faith it is impossible to please Him..." (Hebrews 11:6). Abel had a discerning heart through faith to offer a more excellent sacrifice. Another factor that ca...

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