THE STORY OF GOD’S PEOPLE

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THE STORY OF GOD’S PEOPLE. A Story of Ups and Downs… A Story of the People’s Unfaithfulness AND God’s Ongoing Faithfulness. WHAT AN INCREDIBLE STORY…. 1290 B.C.—Exodus and Wilderness 1250 B.C.—Entrance into the Land 1050 B.C.—Beginning of Kingship - PowerPoint PPT Presentation

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  • THE STORY OF GODS PEOPLEA Story of Ups and Downs A Story of the Peoples Unfaithfulness AND Gods Ongoing Faithfulness

  • WHAT AN INCREDIBLE STORY1290 B.C.Exodus and Wilderness 1250 B.C.Entrance into the Land1050 B.C.Beginning of Kingship922 B.C.Division between North and South9th and 8th centuriesProphets appeared (Elijah, Elisha, Amos, Hosea, Isaiah, Micah)722 B.C.NK (Israel) Falls to Assyria587 B.C. SK (Judah) Falls to BabylonExilic prophets Isaiah, Jeremiah, Ezekiel

  • Now, approximately 700 years after Exodus from Egypt

  • EXILE!587 B.C.

  • Leaders taken to BabylonSome escaped to EgyptPoor and untrained stayed in Jerusalem

  • DURING THE 500 YEARS AS A KINGDOM, A FALSE SENSE OF SECURITY HAD DEVELOPEDGod had promised LANDGod had established a DYNASTY (king)God resided in the TEMPLE in Jerusalem

  • EXILE (587 B.C.)the breakdown of all the systems in which the people trustedLoss of landLoss of kingLoss of temple

  • This creates a major theological crisis for the people of God!Confidence in GodQuestion of identityWhere do we go from here?

  • The Historical AccountsChronicles A look back to the good old days David Ezra-Nehemiah rebuilding the temple, the walls, and the faith of the peopleEsther Courage and Hope God is with His people!

  • 537 B.C.The ReturnRise of Persian Empire under CyrusEdict of Cyrusreturn to homeland and relative freedom to practice religion and customs

  • THE PRE-EMINENT PROBLEM: No Longer a NationTHE PRE-EMINENT QUESTION: Who are we? What is our identity?

  • WHAT WOULD YOU DO???If you were the vision team of a group returning from exile, how would you go about trying to re-establish a source of identity?

  • ARTICULATING AN IDENTITYTEMPLE--People who worship GodTORAH--People of a sacred writingRELATION TO OTHERS--Insiders vs. Outsiders

  • TEMPLEPeople of WorshipFoundation of new temple almost immediately under SheshbazzarTemple completed 20 years later under the leadership of a new governor Zerubbabel and the encouragement of prophets, Haggai & ZechariahHymnbook of the Second Temple--PsalmsNew HistoryChroniclers History a king like David!

  • TORAHPeople of a Sacred Writing

    Ezra, a priest who had grown up in Persia (Babylon) brings back the story that defines their identitythe TORAH (teaching; instruction)

  • THE GREAT DILEMMAWhat do we do with outsiders??? COMPETING VOICESEXCLUSIVE???The basic approach of Ezra and NehemiahINCLUSIVE???The short stories of Ruth and Jonah

  • DISCOVERING A POST-EXILIC IDENTITY537 B.C. Return from ExilePeople of WorshipRebuilding of Temple, Developing a Hymnbook, and Rewriting a History (temple completed by 515 B.C.)People of Written ScriptureTorah presented by Ezra the priest (450 B.C.)People in Relationship to OutsiderExclusive approach by Ezra and Nehemiah; Inclusive approach by short stories of Ruth (Moabite) and Jonah (preacher to Assyria)

  • DEVELOPMENTS IN THE FAITH DURING EXILELAMENTthe honest expression of grief to Godno cover up to God!HOPEan understanding of creation as the LORDs capacity to take chaos (like exile) and bring order

  • Wisdom Literature Learning about life from the God of creationDealing with Lifes RealitiesJob, Ecclesiastes, Proverbs Voicing Grief and HopePsalms, Lamentations, Song of Songs

  • The Character of this Diverse Literature:Dealing honestly with LifeRefusing to remove God from the equationWilling to host alternative voices and viewpoints as the truth, the whole truth

  • Prophetic Voices in the postexilic periodNahum Gods judgment on Nineveh (contra Jonah)Habakkuk The just will live by His faithfulness!Zephaniah the Day of the Lord judgment/salvation

  • Prophetic Voices in the postexilic periodHaggai encouraging the leaders to rebuild the templeZechariah rebuilding, but also anticipating the Messianic AgeMalachi lets get things right, and prepare the way of the Lord

  • Prophetic Voices in the postexilic periodGods judgment is just!Life after exile is tough!Faith in God overcomes the toughest obstacles!Faith = Undivided Loyalty!God is coming! Get Ready!

  • GROWING DIFFICULTIES OF THE FAITH OVER A CENTURY (450-350 B.C.)FORMALISM: Temple Worship increasingly gave way to practices without meaningLEGALISM: Obedience to the Torah in a narrow sense became the means to be the people of YahwehEXCLUSIVISM: Keeping outsiders OUT became predominant

  • A NEW THREAT TO THIS NEW IDENTITY!!!THE RISE OF THE GREEK EMPIRE under Alexander the Great in 333 B.C.

    HELLENISMGreek language, culture, and thought

  • THE JEWS UNDER GREEK RULEAlexander the Great dies 323 BCEmpire inherited by successors:Ptolemy EGYPT Annexed PalestineJews relocate to Egypt and adopt Greek cultureSeptuagint (LXX)Diaspora

    Seleucids SYRIA Antiochus III 198 defeated Egypt and made Palestine part of Seleucid kingdomFavorable period for the Jewish people

  • THE THREAT OF HELLINIZATION175 BC Antiochus IV EpiphanesReturn to Hellenization project, including worship of Greek gods

  • HOW DO YOU RESPOND TO THIS THREAT???HASIDIMthe people of hesed (covenant faithfulness)the loyal and faithful ones

  • FORMATION OF VARIOUS GROUPSPHARISEESout of power in the templetherefore, quite liberal (wanted things to change); in the world but not of the worldlaws of separationSADDUCEESin power in the templetherefore, very conservative (to preserve status quo)ZEALOTStake up military arms and fightESSENESwithdraw to caves in the desert and wait for God to do something himself

  • ANTIOCHUS EPIPHANES in 167 B.C.Outlawed JudaismLooted the TempleBuilt Acra a Greek citadel city to control JerusalemPersecution of JewsABOMINATION OF DESOLATION

  • MATTATHIASand his seven sonsLet all who are zealous for Yahweh come out and fight!!!Judas Maccabeus (the hammer), the oldest son takes overthus becomes known as the Maccabean movement

  • Judas Maccabees defeats the Greek army,cleanses Temple, erects a new altar, andrededicates the Temple in December 164 BC Miracle of the oil Lamps keep burning for eight daysFestival of LightsHanukkahCentury of Jewish independence (163-63 B.C.)

  • RESPONSE TO PERSECUTION AND GREEK (323-63 BC) and then ROMAN POWER (63 BC)APOCALYPTICa way of viewing the world and a literature that expressed that worldview

  • Apocalyptic (literally meaning to see or to reveal) thoughtDualisticExpectationGod would eventually overthrow the world power and establish THE KINGDOM OF GOD Eschatologyend timesLed by an apocalyptic seerHidden, coded language

  • THE BOOK OF DANIELStories to sustain a distinctive identity in a world gone madStories to give hope and courage to people of faith in times of deep crisisStories to remind us of the ultimate triumph of God and Gods people, despite present circumstances or evidence

  • AS THE STORY OF THE OLDER TESTAMENT ENDS:People of God wrestling with the question of identity what does it mean to be the people of God in this world?People of God wrestling with the question of restoration what is the kingdom of God going to look like in this world?People of God wrestling with the question of a King When will God send us the promised Messiah (David-like King)?

  • PREPARETHE WAYOF THE LORD

    JESUS!

  • Reading Quiz Friday, Nov. 19 or Thursday, Nov. 18Chapter 18 (pp. 253-267) 18 termsChapter 19 (pp. 269-281) 12 termsChapter 20 (pp. 283-297) 14 termsChapter 21 (pp. 299-313) 15 terms58 pages of text36 terms24 matching questions59