Dispensations of the Mosaic Law. We may not be much different than the Rebellious Jews.

Grace Bible Church
Pastor Teacher
Robert R. McLaughlin
Tree of Life
Weekly Review
Dispensations of the Mosaic Law.
We may not be much different than the rebellious Jews.
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As we continue our study of the Exodus congregation, I think that we need to take some time out and remember just how easy it would be for anyone of us to fall into the same traps as they did.
In NUM 14, we have a depressed congregation: NUM 14:1, Then all the congregation lifted up their voices and cried, and the people wept that night. This is a very active bunch of depressed believers, and these depressed believers are making accusations against Gods men, verse 2. They are complaining about the place that the Lord has led them to and making accusations against the Lord, in verse 3. Then they are making plans to elect new leaders in verse 4. Then in verse 10, they have stones in their hand and are getting ready to throw them at Moses.

Let’s read it again in NUM 14:2-10, And all the sons of Israel grumbled against Moses and Aaron; and the whole congregation said to them, Would that we had died in the land of Egypt! Or would that we had died in this wilderness! And why is the Lord bringing us into this land, to fall by the sword? Our wives and our little ones will become plunder; would it not be better for us to return to Egypt? So they said to one another, Let us appoint a leader and return to Egypt. Then Moses and Aaron fell on their faces in the presence of all the assembly of the congregation of the sons of Israel. And Joshua the son of Nun and Caleb the son of Jephunneh, of those who had spied out the land, tore their clothes; and they spoke to all the congregation of the sons of Israel, saying, The land which we passed through to spy out is an exceedingly good land. If the Lord is pleased with us, then He will bring us into this land, and give it to us, a land which flows with milk and honey. Only do not rebel against the Lord; and do not fear the people of the land, for they shall be our prey. Their protection has been removed from them, and the Lord is with us; do not fear them. But all the congregation said to stone them with stones. Then the glory of the Lord appeared in the tent of meeting to all the sons of Israel.

So, this is a very active bunch of depressed believers. They are very frustrated, disappointed, discontent believers who are now living in terrible depression. And therefore they are looking for someone to blame for their depression.

In vs 2, it’s the leaders fault; In vs 3, it’s the Lords fault; In vs 4, it’s the geographical location; in vs 10, stoning is the answer. However, everyone of us have something within us which could snap under pressure at any time unless we have integrity or the spiritual strength to challenge the different pressures of life. This is why we need to understand and recognize a doctrine coming up which is the doctrine of mercy and compassion which Moses will reveal in verses 11-14. All of us need to remember the mercy of God in dealing with our own life as well as the life of others.

The mercy of the Lord is illustrated by the mercy seat. For example, look at EXO 25:16-22, And you shall put into the ark the testimony which I shall give you. And you shall make a mercy seat of pure gold, two and a half cubits long and one and a half cubits wide. And you shall make two cherubim of gold, make them of hammered work at the two ends of the mercy seat. And make one cherub at one end and one cherub at the other end; you shall make the cherubim of one piece with the mercy seat at its two ends. And the cherubim shall have their wings spread upward, covering the mercy seat with their wings and facing one another; the faces of the cherubim are to be turned toward the mercy seat. And you shall put the mercy seat on top of the ark, and in the ark you shall put the testimony which I shall give to you. And there I will meet with you; and from above the mercy seat, from between the two cherubim which are upon the ark of the testimony, I will speak to you about all that I will give you in commandment for the sons of Israel.

The mercy seat was constructed of wood and gold. Inside the ark were three items that spoke of the sins of Israel. On each side was a gold cherub: One represented the Righteousness of God; One represented the Justice of God. When the high priest came into the Holy of Holies twice on the day of atonement, he sprinkled blood over the top of the ark or mercy seat. That blood represented the saving work of Christ on the Cross. One golden cherub representing the righteousness of God looked down and was satisfied because Jesus Christ was perfect in His humanity. The other golden cherub representing the justice of God judged those sins, and God the Father was satisfied with His own judgment placed upon His Son, The Lord Jesus Christ.

The ark was a wooden box made of acacia wood overlaid with gold. The wood represents the humanity of Christ; the gold represents the deity of Christ. Together, they represent the Hypostatic union. Inside the box was:
1) The urn of manna, which represented sin as rejection of Gods logistical grace provision. Analogous to the murmuring and complaining that has taken place in the congregation of Israel. And also analogous to the murmuring and complaining which takes place in the life of believers today. However, the Lord meets our murmuring and complaining with his mercy.
2) Aarons rod that budded, which speaks of sin in the sense of rebellion against the authority of God and rejection of Gods system for communication of doctrine. This was analogous the congregation of Israel and their rejection of Moses as their spiritual leader, and also analogous to the rebellion and rejection of Gods system for communication of doctrine today. However, please note that the Lord meets our rebellion and rejection once again with His mercy.
3) The tablets of the Law, which spoke of sin as transgression of divine law. The contents represented Christ bearing our sins on the cross, 1PE 2:24; 2CO 5:21. And so the mercy seat was the place and is the place that God meets fallen humanity. Every believer has a relationship with God which is based on His mercy. DAN 9:9, to God belongs mercy and forgiveness. HEB 8:12, For I will be merciful to their iniquities, and I will remember their sins no more. Therefore, mercy is the basis and the grounds for the believers relationship to God. And mercy is that which the congregation of Israel should have remembered every time that they failed one of the tests that the Lord gave them.
Look at PSA 86:15, But Thou, O Lord, art a God merciful and gracious, slow to anger and abundant in lovingkindness and truth. Now before we go on with the children of Israel we need to understand that all believers fail and all believers sin. And if the congregation just would not listen to the bad report of the ten spies they would have had a better chance to trust the Lord. This is why the Bible says; PSA 118:9, It is better to take refuge in the Lord than to trust in princes. Do not trust in people because of their rank or position. PSA 146:3, Do not trust in princes, in mortal man, in whom there is no deliverance. When people lean on people for their strength, and need to feel loved and wanted, they will end up totally frustrated, disappointed and depressed! They will be under a curse as Jer 17:5 teaches. JER 17:5-10, Thus says the Lord, Cursed is the man who trusts in mankind And makes flesh his strength, And whose heart turns away from the Lord. For he will be like a bush in the desert And will not see when prosperity comes, But will live in stony wastes in the wilderness, A land of salt without inhabitant.

Blessed is the man who trusts in the Lord And whose trust is the Lord. For he will be like a tree planted by the water, That extends its roots by a stream And will not fear when the heat comes; But its leaves will be green, And it will not be anxious in a year of drought Nor cease to yield fruit. The heart is more deceitful than all else And is desperately sick; Who can understand it? I, the Lord, search the heart, I test the mind, Even to give to each man according to his ways, According to the results of his deeds.
Do not trust in a man, ever! Always trust in the Lord and His word whenever you are faced with the giants in the land!
JOB 11:12, And an idiot will become intelligent when the foal of a wild donkey is born a man.
When will the foal of a wild donkey be born a man?
Never!
Then don’t expect anything from people, especially if you know that they are idiots. You cannot count on the brethren to be faithful to you and to be your strength in time of trouble. PSA 49:7, No man can by any means redeem {his} brother, or give to God a ransom for him Man is weak and basically he lacks discernment as Solomon said: ECC 1:8, All things are wearisome; man is not able to tell {it.} The eye is not satisfied with seeing, nor is the ear filled with hearing.
ECC 7:20, Indeed, there is not a righteous man on earth who {continually} does good and who never sins.
ISA 2:22, Stop regarding man, whose breath {of life} is in his nostrils; for why should he be esteemed?
PSA 62:9, Men of low degree are only vanity, and men of rank are a lie; in the balances they go up; they are together lighter than breath.
Now, it doesn’t even matter what stage of spiritual growth that you are at…without Him all of us are nothing. Therefore, we need to note that there are three patterns of sinfulness in the life of any believer during this dispensation. Frequent sinning, which is life in the cosmic system. Occasional sinning, which is spending more time in the PPOG than in the cosmic system. This is accomplished through rebound and recovery and PMA of B.D. Sporadic sinner, which is momentum in the PPOG resulting in the attainment of the three stages of spiritual adulthood and therefore infrequent sinning.

Therefore, we must all understand that if not for the grace of God we would be no different than the children of Israel. So, I would like to begin what I call the Doctrine of Flaws.
Point 1 definition: Distinction must be made between genetic and environmental handicaps and flaws. Genetic flaws are the weaknesses with which we are born because of the old sin nature in the cell structure of the body. Environmental flaws are those which we acquire because of where we live and the surroundings. In genetic handicaps and flaws, human volition is simply not involved. We are just born with a sin nature which has weaknesses and strengths. In environmental handicaps or flaws, human volition is involved.

We allow the environment to dictate to us and to control us and begin to make decisions based on that environment. Genetic or inherent flaws often manifest themselves through impulsive actions. The person may be caught off guard and the suddenness of a pressure situation brings out a weakness that you may have never seen in that person before. Remember, don’t ever be shocked what you find in man!
PSA 62:9, Men of low degree are only vanity, and men of rank are a lie; in the balances they go up; they are together lighter than breath.
However, volition sometimes does become involved with genetic handicaps and flaws under certain pressures. So under spiritual death, people are born with certain flaws or tendencies which become manifest through various pressures or temptations. They often reveal themselves through impulsive actions rather than deliberate actions. Pressure means adversity and in times of adversity many believers do not have the spiritual strength or the integrity to apply what they have been taught, many times, for years.
Now, temptation comes from the old sin nature. Temptation is not sin. Being tempted in a certain area is not sin, it is only when we choose to give into the temptation that sin results. Most environmental flaws or handicaps are directly related to the deliberate and conscious function of volition related to temptation. For example, drug addiction requires the circumstances of temptation. Therefore, drug addiction is not an inherent flaw, but is the result of temptation.
Now, there are exceptions such as when a baby is born addicted to drugs because of one or both of the parents with their addictions. Some categories of sin involve both inherent weaknesses in the body plus environmental exploitation of those weaknesses in volitional function; e.g., drug addiction or alcoholism. However, in these type of flaws the volition of man is always involved.
So, three categories of flaws emerge:
a. Flaws inherent in a dormant state and acquired under some circumstance or pressure, called impulsive flaws. They are dormant or inactive until the pressure or environment brings them out. This happened to the congregation of Israel – and it can happen to anyone of us without learning how to lean on the Lord Jesus Christ for victory.
Remember the Jews were going along just fine when all of a sudden the Lord would bring a tremendous test and pressure into their lives and their inactive flaws would become very active. This was one of the ways the Lord would use to reveal to mankind his need for a Savior. GAL 3:24, Therefore the Law has become our tutor to lead us to Christ, that we may be justified by faith.
Or notice how the apostle Paul put it in the book of Romans.
ROM 3:19-20, Now we know that whatever the Law says, it speaks to those who are under the Law, that every mouth may be closed, and all the world may become accountable to God; because by the works of the Law no flesh will be justified in His sight; for through the Law comes the knowledge of sin.
And why is God going to give these Jews a Law?
ROM 5:20, And the Law came in that the transgression might increase; but where sin increased, grace abounded all the more,

And then Paul really brings out the reason for the Law in ROM 7:7-14, What shall we say then? Is the Law sin? May it never be! On the contrary, I would not have come to know sin except through the Law; for I would not have known about coveting if the Law had not said, You shall not covet. But sin, taking opportunity through the commandment, produced in me coveting of every kind; for apart from the Law sin is dead. And I was once alive apart from the Law; but when the commandment came, sin became alive, and I died; and this commandment, which was to result in life, proved to result in death for me; for sin, taking opportunity through the commandment, deceived me, and through it killed me. So then, the Law is holy, and the commandment is holy and righteous and good. Therefore did that which is good become a cause of death for me? May it never be! Rather it was sin, in order that it might be shown to be sin by effecting my death through that which is good, that through the commandment sin might become utterly sinful. For we know that the Law is spiritual; but I am of flesh, sold into bondage to sin.
So, when God gave the Law to the children of Israel, is was to remind them how helpless and hopeless they are without the mercy and grace of God. So, the three categories of flaws:
a. Flaws inherent in a dormant state and revealed by some circumstance or pressure, called impulsive flaws.
b. The second category of flaws are flaws which are inherent or acquired. For example, bitterness can be inherent, acquired by the volition in some circumstance, or both. Most mental attitude sins fall into this category.
c. Then thirdly, we have flaws which are acquired as a direct result of volition responding to the temptation of the soul.

These are called environmental or acquired flaws. They include homosexuality, drug addiction, first degree murder, stealing, and some forms of lying, like pathological lying. Lying can be inherent, environmental, or volitional. Anger can fit into all three categories. Some people are born angry, and so their anger is impulsive. Others acquire anger through resentment of their environment; hence theirs is a deliberate acquired anger. Some combine the two to become sociopathic or psychopathic. There are different kinds of anger because there are different sources of anger, which the Bible recognizes. For example, some people are born angry, and some acquire it through frustration and arrogance, so that first it is impulsive, then it is developed.

My point is that they may not be such a tremendous difference between the children of Israel and believers today. While genetics is the source of inherent flaws, temptation is the source of all acquired or environmental flaws. Now some very important principles need to be understood. For example, Inherent flaws are there without your consent. We all have certain weaknesses and they are in our lives without us doing a thing to earn them or even deserve them. They have been inherited through the old sin nature.

Then there are environmental flaws are there with your consent. While human volition can restrain inherent flaws, volition is not the original source of these flaws (with the exception Adams volition); spiritual death is the source. You see, we don’t sin and then become sinners, we are born in sin, with an OSN and therefore we sin. In environmental flaws, human volition responds directly to the temptation of the old sin nature. Genetics is the original source of inherent flaws, but they are dormant until pressure brings them out. So, all of this falls under our first point. Definition.

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