Over the last week I’ve presented a ton of information dealing with the ancient Hebrew mindset.
All of this preparation was absolutely necessary before diving into the specifics of God’s justice system.
Unfortunately, in the process, I found myself violating my own policy to keep each post short and sweet and ended up writing much more than I had expected.
Well, since I’m a teacher at heart and have been by profession, I well understand the importance of reviewing certain material to make sure it sticks.
So to help you all out and keep things easy-to-digest, what I have done in this post is organize all the content from articles E21-2 to E21-6 into a quick one-page snapshot review of the essential points dealing with the ancient Hebrew mindset.
This shouldn’t take you more than 2 minutes to read.
POINT 1: Man’s righteousness (TZEDEK) is NOT the same as our righteousness
This shouldn’t be difficult to accept because the Scriptures make it clear that God is NOT a man and that His ways and thoughts are as far removed from us as the earth is from the heavens.
God’s righteousness or His TZEDEK is directly connected to His purpose and will to save all of mankind.
POINT 2: Man is the object of God’s righteousness or His “will to save us”
According to the Scriptures, man is pronounced righteous once he or she accepts God’s saving plan for his or her life.
In our day and age, the definition of a righteous man is one who accepts Yeshua’s sacrifice as the perfect justification for his or her sin.
POINT 3: MISHPAT (usually translated as “justice”) is nothing more or less than the Old Testament term for “The Gospel”
When we do a deep word study of the Hebrew term MISHPAT, we find that from God’s perspective, it means nothing more or less than “the revealed Word of God’s plan of salvation for all mankind”, which is the precise scholarly definition of “The Gospel” as it pertains to the New Testament.
POINT 4: The gentile Church has MISTAKENLY defined The Gospel as only referring to the birth, life, death, and resurrection of Yeshua
This assumption that the gentile church has taught concerning The Gospel is completely wrong and unscriptural.
While Yeshua is certainly the cornerstone of God’s plan of salvation, man’s awareness of The Gospel began with Abraham.
There was much that had to occur prior to Yeshua’s first coming and there is a lot more that has to occur prior to His second coming.
The Old Testament is where The Gospel begins and is established.
The New Testament simply identifies for us who the Messiah of the Old Testament Gospel is.
Again, let us not forget that Yeshua and His disciples taught “The Gospel” using ONLY those Scriptures the gentile church now calls the Old Testament.
POINT 5: The Israelites fierce dedication to obey God’s Torah was because they believed life ended at the grave (SHEOL) and that death permanently separated them from YHVH
Since the Hebrews did not have an articulated sense of what lay beyond the grave, they believed that this life was pretty much the only chance they had to show gratitude to YHVH by obeying His commandments.
Their obedience to God had nothing to do with trying to get saved, but all about the expression of their gratitude to the One who had already saved them.
So that wraps up the quick review.
Next time we will begin taking a look at the individual commands and regulations of God, which are really the beginning of the development of The Gospel.
In other words, next time we quite literally begin Act One of The Gospel.