| || |The Berean Expositor Volume 53 - Page 162 of 215 Index | Zoom | |
forgiveness and willingness to return again provided they repented (i.e. changed their
minds concerning Him), and were converted (i.e. turned again to Him) in Acts 3:, refers
to the testimony of the prophets and says "Yea, and all the prophets from Samuel, and
those that follow after, as many as have spoken, have likewise foretold of these days"
(Acts 3: 24).
So these Books in the O.T. Scriptures are not put into God's Word for their historical
interest. They are vital to an understanding of the N.T. They foretell (and those that have
eyes to see, and hearts to understand) the coming of Israel's mighty Deliverer, their
Messiah, God's Anointed One. Guided by the Spirit of God they wrote down, to their
utter dismay, that this Coming One would be afflicted and slain. That He would offer
Himself as the one sin-offering for all mankind, that all might be saved from the penalty
of sin and death. That in the end He would come in power and majesty and set up His
Kingdom on the earth in the city of Zion.
The message that Peter and the other disciples proclaimed in Jerusalem in Acts 2:, 3:
and 4: was that this Deliverer had come. That Jesus Christ of Nazareth, the man they
had crucified, whom God has raised from the dead, would return if they repented of their
wickedness and believed in Him as their risen and glorious Saviour.
As we now know, the Jewish people rejected the message of the disciples, even as
they rejected Jesus of Nazareth Himself as their Deliverer when He came among them
fulfilling all the signs and wonders foretold by the prophets. Every sabbath day the O.T.
prophets were read to the Jewish people in their synagogues. The doctors of the law who
were the religious leaders of the day were steeped in these books. Yet they failed to heed
the words of both Christ Himself and Peter and the other apostles. Their eyes were blind
and their hearts were hard: they refused even the second opportunity God offered them
to accept the One Who came and fulfilled all the O.T. prophecies that they were supposed
to know so well.
So temporarily they became set aside at the close of the Book of Acts, and will be
until they do acknowledge the Lord Jesus Christ as their Messiah. We, today, are living
in this dispensation of Grace, this interim period, and have the opportunity of accepting
by faith, not an inheritance on the earth, but one "far above all", as members of that
church which is the Body of Christ.
In several ways Samuel stands to David as John the Baptist does to the Lord. Both the
mothers of Samuel and John were naturally barren and waited a long time before their
sons were born. Samuel was dedicated as a Nazarite all his days (I Sam. 1: 11), while of
John it was said "He shall drink neither wine nor strong drink" (Luke 1: 15). Samuel
anointed David as king, while the special office of John the Baptist was to testify at the
baptism of the Lord at Jordan that the Messiah, Israel's King, had come. Samuel was
rejected by the people, while John similarly "decreased" until his final death in prison.
Hannah's song at the birth of Samuel is strikingly similar to the song of Zacharias at
the birth of John (I Sam. 2: 1-10; Luke 1: 67). Of Samuel it is written: "And the child