The Bible from 6,000 Feet, part 2

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Genre Alert

Wisdom Literature

 

          The next literary genre we encounter is wisdom literature. The Old Testament books considered in this category are Job, Proverbs, and Ecclesiastes. A number of the Psalms are also classified in this category. Song of Songs (Song of Solomon) can be placed in this category, but it is primarily romantic poetry. “Wisdom is the ability to make godly choices in life.” We do this by knowing and applying God’s principles when we have to make decisions.

 

So how do we get the most out of wisdom literature? As you read poetic literature, look for principles rather than promises. A principle is an insight into how God operates. A promise is something that always comes true. Even though the Bible is inspired and contains the truth, sometimes the truth means that it accurately records history and quotes of individuals. The words that these individuals spoke may or may not be true concerning God or doctrine. This is especially useful in reading Job and Ecclesiastes, which use speculative wisdom as a way of wrestling with the great issues of life.

 

Poetry has the careful wordings, cadences, and stylistic qualities that make it easier to commit to memory than prose, and thus poetry also became the medium of Old Testament wisdom.

 

The Book of Job

 

It may surprise many Christians to learn that Job is probably the oldest book of the Bible in terms of when it was written. The events of the book of Job are historical, and occurred during the time of the patriarchs.

 

Most people think that Job was written to answer the question, “Why does suffering exist?”  That is indeed the question that Job asks throughout the book, but if that is the major purpose for the book, then that question goes unanswered.

 

The book of Job reads like a Columbo episode because it tells you “who done it” at the first two chapters, and then the rest of the book is devoted to the characters in the story playing the role of the detectives trying to sort out theological clues as to how to solve the case.

What we are told in chapters 1 & 2 is how Job’s suffering came about, a picture that Job was not privy to himself. We are told that Satan appeared before God and questioned Job’s integrity and faith. Satan proposed a challenge to God in which he requested to take away Job’s possessions and loved ones, and eventually harm his physical body in an attempt to get him to curse God. God agreed to the challenge, but put specific limitations on what Satan was permitted to do. The book follows a series of discourses between Job and his “friends” in which they are trying to present their various cases as to why they believe these things are happening to Job. In chapters 38-41, God gives Job a science quiz that would stump any professor, and then restores back to Job everything that had been lost.

 

This tells us the real theme of the book of Job, which is God’s SOVEREIGNTY. Sovereignty is defined as having total power or to be self-governing. We may use this term to refer to kings, queens, and the rulers of countries and nations, but ultimately, there is only one who is truly sovereign, and that is God. The key point to remember about Job’s predicament is that Satan had to ask God’s permission to do anything to Job. As Satan put it, “Have you not put a hedge around him and his household and everything he has?” (Job 1:10)

 

So What Do I Do With This?

 

There are two great truths that we can take from the book of Job. The first thought is that whatever circumstances are present in our lives, whether they be temptations, trials, frustrations, annoyances, or blessings, are all God-filtered. In the New Testament, we are told that these things are not only God-filtered, but that God will not allow anything in our lives that we will not be able to handle. (1 Corinthians 10:13) This brings about the second great truth from the book of Job, and that is the proper way to view trials. If Job had been privy to the conversation between God and Satan in the first two chapters, his ability to understand why the trials were coming would have been changed dramatically. The truth is that God allowed Satan to inflict Job so severely because God knew Job’s faith, and He was confident in Job that he would be able to handle losing his entire family and wealth, along with his physical health, without turning his back on God. God also knew that if trials came Job’s way, and he reacted to them by standing firm in his faith, that these same trials would produce a maturity and strength to Job’s faith that couldn’t be produced by any other means. (James 1:2-4) The truth is that if we are “In Christ,” then we are “more than conquerors” through all of these things, (Romans 8:37) and the sufferings of this present time cannot be compared with what shall be revealed in us. (Romans 8:18) So, the next time that trials or persecution comes your way, rejoice that you were counted worthy to suffer for His name. (Acts 5:41)

Genre Alert

Law

 

          Genre #3 is law. The role of the law in Israel’s history was to establish the ways they were to live in community with one another and to provide for their relationship with and worship of Yahweh, their God. The commandments themselves are found almost exclusively in only four of the five books called “the Law”: Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, and Deuteronomy.

 

There are 5 steps to understanding how to apply law as a Christian. The Old Testament law was a covenant made between God and the nation of Israel. The Old Testament is not our testament, meaning that we as Christians are under the new covenant in which Christ has redeemed us from the curse of the law. (Galatians 3:13) We should assume that none of its stipulations (laws) are binding on us unless they are renewed in the new covenant, and even then,  every imperative (command) is based on an indicative (statement of identity). The Christian life is about allowing the living Lord Jesus to live His life and His law of love through you. (Galatians 2:20)

 

Two kinds of old-covenant stipulations have clearly not been renewed in the new covenant. Israelite civil laws-those that specify penalties for various crimes (major and minor) for which one might be arrested and tried in Israel. Israelite ritual laws are the largest single block of Old Testament laws and are found throughout Leviticus, as well as in many parts of Exodus, Numbers, and Deuteronomy.  These laws tell the people of Israel how to carry on the practice of worship, detailing everything from the design of the implements of worship, to the priests’ responsibilities, to what sorts of animals should be sacrificed and how.

 

Part of the old covenant is renewed in the new covenant. Some aspects of ethical law are restated in the New Testament as applicable to Christians. Such laws derive their continued applicability from the fact that they serve to support the two basic laws of the new covenant, on which depend all the Law and the Prophets.

 

“Teacher, which is the great commandment in the Law?” And he said to him, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the great and first commandment. And a second is like it: You shall love your neighbor as yourself. On these two commandments depend all the Law and the Prophets.” (Matthew 22:36-40)

 

All of the Old Testament law is still the word of God for us even though it is not still the command of God to us. We cannot know our story without knowing Israel’s story. All of these laws fit into the two commands of the new covenant. The Law shows us how impossible it is to please God on our own. (Romans 3:20) The Law was not thought of in Israel as a “means of salvation.” It was neither given for that reason nor could it possibly function in that way.

The Book of Exodus

 

Anybody who’s ever been to a movie theatre and looked up at a glowing sign that reads “EXIT” knows what the book of Exodus is all about. It is a book that tells the story of God’s DELIVERANCE of the Israelites out of slavery in Egypt and the beginning of their journey toward the promise land promised to Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. After a departure to tell the story of the book of Job, we now return back to the main narrative of the history of God’s redemption. Genesis left off with Jacob and his remaining eleven sons moving down to Egypt due to Joseph’s position of authority there. For a long period of time, the Israelites (Jacob’s descendants) enjoyed prosperity and favor in Egypt. They began to multiply and became very numerous. And then…

 

Delivered from Slavery

Exodus 1-15

 

We are told in the first chapter of Exodus that a time came when a Pharaoh rose to power who did not know Joseph’s story and saw the Israelites not as an ally, but as a threat. (Exodus 1:8) To prevent any possibility of the Israelites joining any invading foreign armies in an attempt to overthrow Egypt, they were subjected to harsh slavery, building some of Egypt’s greatest cities and monuments. Despite the harsh treatment, the Israelites continued to grow in number until one day Pharaoh issued a decree that every male child that is born is to be thrown into the Nile River.

 

One of the boys born just in time to be thrown into the Nile was Moses. In an attempt to save Moses’ life, his mother built a basket of reeds and floated Moses upon the Nile River. God steered Moses’ basket to Pharaoh’s court, where Pharaoh’s daughter saw him, and desired to raise Moses as her own child. Moses’ sister arranged for Moses’ biological mother to nurse Moses, and to make the deal even sweeter, she got paid to do it.

 

After the period of nursing, Moses was raised in Pharaoh’s court, and had an inner sense that he was going to deliver his people, the Hebrew slaves, but he thought he would do it by rising to power in Egypt, like Joseph before him. God had other plans.

 

Moses killed an Egyptian who was beating a Hebrew. When the word spread and Pharaoh tried to kill Moses he fled to the desert in Midian, where he got married and became a shepherd for another 40 years, bringing his age to 80.

God appeared to Moses in a burning bush and told Moses that he was his chosen vessel to free his people from Egypt. God told him that Pharaoh was going to be resistant, but God would send Moses with His power to bring plagues on Egypt until Pharaoh let the Hebrew slaves go. Moses was resistant and made many excuses, but God eventually made him go, and called his brother Aaron to be his mouthpiece. Moses and Aaron are both descendants of Levi, the priestly line. This is when God reveals himself as “I am that I am,” or the unpronounceable 4 Hebrew consonants of YHWH, where we get the English Jehovah or Yahweh.

 

God brings 10 plagues on Egypt as Pharaoh resists. The 10 plagues were not random, but were intentional attacks designed by God against the Egyptian gods showing Himself sovereign over the gods of Egypt. The last plague of the death of the firstborn was an attack on Pharaoh, who believed he was a human god, and finally got Pharaoh to let the Israelites go.

 

In preparation for the 10th plague, the death of the firstborn, God commanded every Hebrew household to slaughter a lamb without blemish, drain the blood, and paint the doorposts with the blood. They were to cook and eat the whole lamb and meal with their staff in their hands and sandals on their feet because after this night they were to leave Egypt.

 

The Israelites gathered the gold and jewelry from the Egyptians as God had promised and headed out. God led them appearing as a cloud (the Shekinah glory) by day, and a pillar of fire by night.

 

Pharaoh changed his mind and chased after the Israelites and cornered them by the Red Sea. The fire of God stood in between Pharaoh’s army and the Israelites. God told Moses to place his staff in the Red Sea, and they would walk across on dry ground. Moses obeyed, and the water formed as walls on their left and right, and they walked across on dry ground.

 

When they had crossed, the pillar of fire relented and Pharaoh’s army charged across the Red Sea. Then the walls of water collapsed and Pharaoh’s entire army drowned in the Red Sea.

 

Israel went into Egypt as a family, but came out as a nation. The sins of the Amorites had now reached the “Judgment button,” (Genesis 15:16) and God was ready to lead the nation of Israel into the land He had promised Abraham so many years before.

Delivered to Service

Exodus 16-40

 

God’s deliverance is always from something (bondage) and for something (service and worship). After the Israelites camped in the desert of Sinai, Moses went up on Mt. Sinai to meet with God, and God gave him both the law and the instructions for building the tabernacle. Moses came down and told the people all of the commands that they were to keep, and they agreed with joy and excitement. Moses went back up the mountain, and God carved two stone tablets containing the Ten Commandments with his finger. While Moses was receiving the tablets from God, the Israelites were making a golden calf and offering sacrifices to it. God was ready to destroy them when Moses interceded on their behalf and God relented from his wrath. Moses had to go back up the mountain and receive new tablets of the Ten Commandments.

 

The Tabernacle was to be built according to God’s specific instructions. It was to be God’s dwelling place among the Israelites when they camped. It was also the place where God would meet with Moses, and where the Levites would perform the sacrificial and ceremonial duties for the Israelites.

 

The Book of Leviticus

 

The book of Leviticus, along with 1 Chronicles, is usually the most under-appreciated book of the Bible. We tend to get lost amongst all of the sacrifices, laws, feasts, and regulations for the priests. It doesn’t seem to be very relevant to our lives, so we tend to skip over this book, or throw down the Bible in disgust having been disappointed that we haven’t found all the answers to life’s questions in reading through the first three books of the Bible.

 

I would encourage you to not pass up this book because if you put in the effort, you will discover Jesus Christ on every page. Everything in this book points to the life, ministry and death of Jesus. You will also encounter the HOLINESS of God more in this book than perhaps any other book. If we have a proper understanding and reverence for God’s holiness, and the consequences of sin, we will fall to our knees in repentance and gratefulness as we reflect on God’s great gift of forgiveness.

 

The Book of Numbers

 

After crossing the Red Sea and witnessing the death of the Egyptian army, the Israelites began their journey across the Sinai Desert. God provided for their needs with manna (bread) from heaven and clean water from different sources.  The Israelites from day one did little much than COMPLAINING. They complained about the food that God was providing for them. They complained about Moses’ leadership. They complained that life was better in Egypt. Each time they complained, God sent a punishment.

 

Fire from the Lord burned among them and consumed some of the outskirts of the camp. (11:1-3) God gave the Israelites meat until it came out their nostrils and they loathed it. (11:4-35) Miriam was given leprosy. (12:1-16) God caused the Israelites to wander in the desert for forty years until the complacent and unfaithful generation died off. (13:1-14:45) The ground split apart and swallowed Korah and his rebellious followers and their possessions. (16) Moses could not enter into the promise land because he misrepresented the Lord. (20:1-13) God sent venomous snakes to bite and kill the Israelites. (21:4-8)

 

The book of Numbers contains the history during Israel’s forty years of wandering in the wilderness. It is only about 11-13 days journey from Egypt to the promise land, but it took Israel forty years to make this journey because of unbelief. When they got to the border of the promise land, they sent twelve spies into the land. Ten of the spies returned petrified because of the giants living in the land. Joshua and Caleb returned confident and rejoicing in God’s promises to give them the land. Israel believed the ten spies, and God’s judgment was that this unbelieving generation would die in the wilderness. Only Joshua and Caleb would ever see the promise land from this group.

 

The Book of Deuteronomy

 

Deuteronomy means “second law” and best characterized by the word REMEMBER. After the wilderness generation died, Moses preached to a new generation and reminded them of all the great things that the Lord had done for their fathers, and encouraged them in the promise that they would possess the land. Moses then went up on Mt. Nebo and had a chance to view the promise land, but was not allowed to enter into it because of an occasion in which he misrepresented God. He died on Mt. Nebo and God buried him.

 

The Book of Joshua

 

If there were one word that captures the mood of the book of Joshua, it would be VICTORY. The book of Joshua is where the nation of Israel, and the fulfillment of God’s promises to Abraham, finally begin to take shape. Abraham dwelt in the promise land, though he never possessed any of it. Neither did Isaac, Jacob, or any of Jacob’s twelve sons. After the Israelites were delivered out of slavery in Egypt, they were numerous, and in the wilderness God gave them the law, the leadership of Moses, and the Tabernacle. In the book of Joshua, the Israelites will find their home.

 

After the death of Moses, Joshua becomes the new leader of the Israelites. The generation that complained in the wilderness had all died off except Caleb and Joshua, and they are getting a second chance at entering the promise land. Joshua sends in two spies, which was dangerous because of their previous mistake, but these spies find Rahab, who was a prostitute that had heard about the Exodus and plagues and believed that God had given the land to the Israelites, so she hid the two spies, and ended up getting saved. The Israelites cross the Jordan witnessing the same miracles that occurred at the parting of the Red Sea. When they crossed over, they set up an altar of stones to remember the occasion.

 

The book of Joshua models the concept that God’s promises do not exclude our need to be faithful and diligent to bring those promises to pass. The first battle was at Jericho, which they captured without a battle by following God’s directions, which very oddly, violated every law of battle that God had given them in the Torah. The Israelites were instructed not to take any plunder from the city, but Achan took a Babylonian robe, along with some silver and gold. Because of this, the Israelites were defeated at the city of Ai. God had them inspect the camp and find the sinner, and kill him and his whole family.

 

The Israelites were mostly obedient from that point on and had victory in the rest of the battles. However, there still existed some forms of disobedience as they didn’t always kill every person in certain cities that God had instructed, and these people groups would be a constant thorn in Israel’s side for the rest of their history, including the present time.

 

After they had conquered the land, they divided the land among the twelve tribes. The tribe of Levi didn’t get any land, but were issued certain cities of refuge. Their inheritance was the Lord as they ministered in the Tabernacle.

 

Israel was now a nation with their own land, their own law, and their own identity. God had fulfilled the promise given to Abraham in part as his descendants inherited the land that God had shown him.

The Book of Judges

 

The book of Judges, along with 2 Kings, takes the award for the most tragic period in Israel’s history. Shortly after gaining victory over their enemies and possessing the promised land, Joshua dies, and this time there will be no great leader to take his place. Judges 2:10-23 explains the cycle that takes place during this 400 year period. Due to the Israelites failure to obey God fully in completely driving out the former inhabitants of the land, they began to be influenced by them. They started to worship other gods, so God sent raiders to plunder them. Then the people would cry out to God, so God would raise up judges (these aren’t judges as we think of them, but are actually warriors and leaders of the people) to save them from the raiders. Some of these judges are the better-known characters of the Bible (Deborah, Gideon, & Samson). When the judge died, then the people would return to their old ways, so God would again send raiders against them.

 

The key word for the book of Judges is RELATIVISM, because the phrase that is repeated several times throughout the book is, “In those days, Israel had no king, and everyone did what was right in their own eyes.” (Judges 21:25) One of the worst examples of how far the nation had sunk is contained in chapters 19-21. The book of Judges is very timely for our age in which the idea of absolute truth has been thrown out the window completely. Judges reminds us that when there is no standard of morality that is transcendent of ourselves, it only leads to sinful chaos and misery, not peace.

 

The Book of Ruth

 

The book of Ruth is the bright spot in the period of the judges. It is a story of REDEMPTION. It is a story of a Moabitess named Ruth and her Jewish mother in law Naomi, who return back to the land of Israel after the untimely deaths of their husbands. One day, while in the process of gathering grain left for the poor, Ruth meets a man named Boaz, who turns out to be a near relative of Naomi’s. There was a law in the Torah that stated that if a man died without having a male heir, then the nearest kinsman could raise up seed for him. This nearest kinsman could also purchase back land for the deceased relative. In the case that the death was caused by murder or manslaughter, this same nearest kinsman’s duty was to avenge the death. This nearest kinsman was referred to as the kinsman-redeemer, as well as the avenger of blood.

 

Ruth, upon Naomi’s instruction, requests that Boaz fulfill his duties of a nearer kinsman, but they discover that there is a kinsman nearer than Boaz. Boaz approaches the nearer kinsman about fulfilling his duty. He agrees to buy back the land, but refuses to marry Ruth, and so he cannot fulfill his duty. Boaz is then free to be Naomi’s kinsman-redeemer and marry Ruth, and they live happily ever after.

United Kingdom

 

The Books of 1 & 2 Samuel

 

One of the ongoing themes of the books of Judges and Ruth was “there was no king in Israel.” From 1 Samuel – 2 Chronicles, the history of Israel is all about the different kings that reigned, and the prophets who were around during the reigns of these kings. Within the time period of the kings in Israel, there are three sections that will help us remember the different books found in these sections. These three sections are the United kingdom, Divided kingdom, exile and return from exile. When you think of the books of 1 & 2 Samuel, think UNITED kingdom.

 

The books of 1 & 2 Samuel are named after the last man to occupy the office of judge in Israel, ending the period of the judges, and the first man to occupy the office of prophet in Israel. It would be Samuel who would anoint the first king of the nation of Israel.

 

Israel wanted to have a king like the other nations, so they named Saul, who was from the tribe of Benjamin, a tall and handsome man, as their first king. Saul was disobedient to God’s commands, and the kingship, as well as the Holy Spirit were taken from him.

 

As God looks at the heart of a person, and not at the outer appearance, He had David in mind for king, who was from the tribe of Judah, and from the family line of Boaz & Jesse, who were all in the Messianic family tree. David was an unlikely candidate to be king because he was smaller and definitely not intimidating. He was a shepherd who wrote songs. David was anointed king by Samuel even while Saul was still reigning on the throne.

 

After David killed the Philistine giant warrior Goliath, the people sang of David’s triumphs as being better than Saul. Saul became jealous and David spent most of his kingship and life running from Saul who was trying to kill him. David is probably most remembered for committing adultery and murder through the episode with Bathsheba. Despite this, David was looked on as the “man after God’s own heart” because he always sought after God and repented of any evil that he committed. The highlight of David’s career was bringing back the Ark of the Covenant to Israel. David wanted to build a temple for God, but God wanted his son Solomon to build it because David was a warrior and had a career of blood.

 

In 2 Samuel 7, we have the fourth major covenant that God makes with humanity. The first covenant was made with Noah after the flood, the second was made with Abraham, the third was made with the Israelites when God gave them the Torah, and now the fourth will be made with David as a promise to the nation of Israel and humanity by extension. God made an everlasting covenant with David that one from his line would always sit on the throne in Israel, a prophecy that would be fulfilled in Jesus, and specifically will be fulfilled when Jesus sets up His millennial kingdom following His second coming.

Genre Alert

The Psalms

 

          Psalms were the written form of the worship songs of Israel, much in the same way that we have hymnals or praise song books today. Many Christians fail to recognize that the Bible contains words spoken to God or about God, not just words from God to people. Psalms are of several different types, including: psalms of praise/thanksgiving/confidence in God, psalms of lament (mourning and sadness), wisdom psalms, royal/messianic psalms (sung when anointing a king), psalms of repentance, psalms calling for God’s judgment on enemies, pilgrimage psalms (sung when arriving into Jerusalem for feast days) and historical psalms (reflecting back on God’s working in history).

 

There are three basic benefits of the Psalms. The psalms can serve as a guide to worship. The psalms demonstrate to us how we can relate honestly to God. The psalms demonstrate the importance of reflection and meditation on things that God has done for us.

 

The Book of Psalms

 

The book of psalms is a collection of poetry set to music. King David wrote most of them, but Psalms were written all throughout the history of Israel. Psalms was used as the WORSHIP book in the nation of Israel. It could be compared to The Book of Common Prayer used by the Church of England, otherwise known as the Episcopal Church. It contains songs not only to be sung during everyday worship, but specific songs that were sung during the coronation of kings, or sung during feast days.

 

It has been said that the times in your life when you are going through the most trials, heartache, and confusion are going to be the times that you will get the most out of the book of Psalms. It is a book of high emotion. If you read the account of David’s life, you will understand why this is the case. David spent most of his life on the run avoiding being killed by King Saul and thwarting the plots of his sons to steal his throne. Perhaps the best lesson that we can learn from the Psalms is gleaning from David’s constant and unshakeable dependence upon God, and his honesty with Him. Even during the darkest times of David’s life, he was still able to find words of praise and trust in God. There are times when David will express anger, doubt, and praise all in the same psalm.

Divided Kingdom

 

The Books of 1-2 Kings

Part 1

1 & 2 Samuel chronicled the history of the United Kingdom. 1 & 2 Kings will now tell us the history of the DIVIDED Kingdom of Israel. As King David got older and was about to die, there were already signs of division beginning. His sons Absalom and Adonijah both attempted a coup of the throne. Yet upon David’s death, it was his son Solomon who was placed on the throne of Israel.

 

God came to Solomon and told Him to ask for anything that he wished. Solomon asked for wisdom to rule the people and make wise decisions. God was so pleased that Solomon chose wisdom over riches and success that he granted these things to him as well. Rulers and people from far away came to hear Solomon’s wisdom and to see the great temple and palace he had built. A permanent temple now replaced the portable and movable tabernacle in which God’s presence formerly resided. This symbolized the fact that the Israelites were now truly home.

The promising beginning of Solomon’s reign ended in bitter tragedy. Solomon found himself discontent with the wisdom and glory that he had established for himself, so he sought fulfillment in all kinds of endeavors, but his greatest passion was for women. Solomon blatantly disobeyed every commandment that was given by God directly to the kings of Israel. He multiplied chariots. He married foreign women to extend his reign and to form alliances with other nations. By the end of his life, Solomon had 700 wives and 300 concubines. When God gives a commandment, it is for a reason. God told the Israelites not to marry foreign women or to multiply wives because they would lead their hearts astray to worship foreign idols. This is exactly what happened to Solomon. Solomon erected places of worship for all of his foreign wives, which included places to worship Ashtoreth of the Sidonians, Molech of the Ammonites, Chemosh of Moab, and others. (1 Kings 11)

 

So What Do I Do With This?

 

Up until this point, the Bible may have been pretty easy to follow because the history found in the previous books that we have covered have been consecutive. From 1 Samuel until the end of the Old Testament, we are faced with a challenge of figuring out where we are in history. Even if you are reading 1– 2 Kings, it gets confusing because the story switches between the Northern Kingdom and the Southern Kingdom, and there are several times in which the kings from both kingdoms within the same time period will have the same names. There are times when the same king will go by two different names. In order to make it easier to get your bearings as to what you are reading in terms of when it happened, I have put together a chart in the appendix. This chart will tell you who is reigning in both the Northern and Southern kingdom’s at any given time period, as well as who is prophesying during that time period. This will help you tremendously when you start reading one of the prophetic books. For example, if you are reading Isaiah, and want to know where Isaiah’s prophecies fit in with the books of Samuel, Kings, Chronicles, and the other prophets, then you would find Isaiah in the Southern Kingdom during the reigns of Azariah/Uzziah, Jotham, Ahaz, & Hezekiah. You would also discover that Amos, Hosea, & Micah prophesied during the same time period as Isaiah in the Southern Kingdom, and Jonah who was from the Northern Kingdom (Galilee to be exact) had his adventures in the huge fish and prophesied to Nineveh during this time period.

 

The Book of Proverbs

 

Proverbs is the WISDOM book of the Old Testament. It was written by Solomon, who was proclaimed the wisest man that ever lived. (1 Kings 4:29-34) The book is written in the format of a father teaching his son valuable lessons about life. A proverb is a wise saying that is usually meant to be easily memorable. Unlike a fortune cookie however, these wise sayings come from the creator of the universe through the pen of Solomon and a few other writers. In this book we can find wisdom concerning relationships, knowing God, handling our money, and avoiding the common pitfalls of life.

 

The Book of Ecclesiastes

 

We all hope that when we die, our legacy will live on. We all desire to live a life that makes a difference. We all search for fulfillment. The book of Ecclesiastes chronicles King Solomon’s search for fulfillment and purpose apart from God. He searches for meaning in wisdom, escapism, legacy, etc… but finds that all is VANITY apart from finding fulfillment in serving God.