Class Notes: 12/19/2012

The incarnation of the Seed of the Woman is celebrated on Christmas

We have been studying the battle that has raged throughout human history between he "seed of the serpent" and the "seed of the woman" that was prophesied in Gen 3:15;

We will now take a brief break from that study and take a look at the incarnation of the "seed of the woman" in the unique person of our Lord Jesus Christ whose birth we celebrate at Christmas.

The incarnation of the Son of God who is the "seed of the woman" is the common thread throughout the Bible. God's plan for time and eternity has the incarnation of the "seed of the woman" as its central theme and most important focus because the issue in salvation is always "believe in the Lord Jesus Christ and you will be saved" Acts 16:31; because no other person is a source of salvation. Acts 4:12;

In the Old Testament the incarnation of the Son of God is described by the word Messiah. The English word is derived from the Greek "Messias" that is a transliteration of the Hebrew "Mashiah" and the Aramaic "Meshiah" that means anointed. The equivalent word in the New Testament Greek is "Christos" that is transliterated as "Christ" in the English.

In the Old Testament the adjective form of the Hebrew word "mashiyach" that is translated as "anointed" is used for priests Lev 4:3, 5, 16; Lev 6:22; and the noun form used for kings. Saul, 1Sam 24:6, 10; David, 2Sam 19:21; 2Sam 23:1; and Zedekiah, Lam 4:20;

This is a perfect description of our Lord Jesus Christ in his unique identity because He is simultaneously a king and a priest. In the united kingdom of Israel and the southern kingdom of Judah the king had to be from the tribe of Judah and the priests had to be from the tribe of Levi.

These offices are mutually exclusive under the Old Covenant to Israel so a king could not be a priest and a priest could not be a king. Under the New Covenant to Israel our Lord Jesus Christ is both king and priest.

The term Messiah was used as a designation of the hope of the coming Savior and Deliverer by Daniel in Dan 9:25, 26; and was commonly used by the Jews at the time of the incarnation to express the concept. John 1:41; John 4:25;

Some of the prophesies that reference the Messiah are general such as in 1 Sam 2:35; "I will raise me up a faithful priest, that shall do according to that which is in my heart and in my mind: and I will build him a sure house; and he shall walk before mine anointed for ever" the near fulfillment of this prophecy refers to Samuel but the long view anticipates the coming of the Messiah.

In other passages the Messiah is identified by some specific or personal term such as in Isa 7:14; where the Messiah is identified with the unique term Immanuel that is a transliteration of the Hebrew noun" Immanuwel" that means God with us.

As we have seen in our study of the "seed of the woman" a well-defined line of prediction is provided in the Old Testament concerning the coming of the Savior. The line begins with Adam and Eve and is traced through a constantly narrowing channel until all the important parameters are eventually revealed.

The coming Savior will be "the seed of the woman" Gen 3:15; in the line of Seth Gen 4:25; through Noah, Gen 6:18; a descendant of Abraham, Gen 12:1-3;Through Isaac, Gen 17:19;, Jacob Gen 28:14;, Judah Gen 49:10; Boaz, Obed, Jesse, and David, 2Sam 7:12-13; At that point it is necessary to go to the New Testament genealogies that are recorded in Matt 1:2-16; and Luke 3:23-38;

The story of the lineage of the Savior is a demonstration of the sovereign purpose and certainty of God's will and at the same time it is a demonstration of Satan's constant efforts to impede and prevent it.

Satan's attack begins by leading Adam and Eve into temptation and the fall Gen 3:6; that is followed by God's promise of his Son "the seed of the woman" as Savior.

The seed of the woman would bruise the head of the serpent Gen 3:15;. Satan's first response is the murder of Abel by his brother Cain Gen 4:8; followed by God providing a new channel to the "seed of the woman" with the birth of Seth Gen 4:25;

Satan's attacks on human race and with it the line of the Messiah continues until the time of Noah and the flood with the destruction every creature on the earth that breathes except those in the ark with Noah's immediate family.

As we have seen, with the flood God purifies the race and preserves the genetic line to the "seed of the woman" but It doesn't take Satan long to influence mankind to defect with Nimrod and the Tower of Babel but through it all God continues with the selection of Abraham Gen 12:1-3;

Satan's opposition to the line continues with the delayed birth of Isaac and the attempt to replace him with Ishmael but in spite of this Isaac is chosen Gen 17:19; The disinterest of Esau and the selection of Jacob in his place Gen 28:14; and Judah Gen 49:10; in spite of his immorality.

The story of Ruth and Boaz and the providence of God illustrate God's sovereign design in the line of the Messiah where the line to David who becomes the King who will have a descendant on the throne forever is linked with Judah.

The lineage from David to Christ is incomplete in the Old Testament but the New Testament genealogies fill in the gap and show us that both Joseph and Mary are descendants of David. Matthew gives us the genealogy of Joseph and Luke gives us the genealogy of Mary.

We see from this that Joseph is descended from David through David's son Solomon the line of the kings of Judah, and Mary is descended from David through David's son Nathan. Bathsheba was the mother of both.

The two lines are fulfillment of the Old Testament prophecy referred to as the Davidic Covenant where God had promised David both the continuance of his seed and his throne forever 2Sam 7:12-16 ;

Years later because of his apostasy, Jehoiakim, king of Judah, is cursed in Jer 36:31-31; and his son Coniah, who is also known as Jehoiachin and Jeconiah, was carried off as a Babylonian captive when Jerusalem fell and the line of the kings of Judah ends. Jer 22:30; This is known as the Coniah curse and because of this the genetic line of the Messiah is preserved through Nathan rather than through Solomon.

So we see in the New Testament that the legal right to the throne of David is passed through Solomon and Jehoiakim to Joseph and to Joseph's legal son Jesus Christ but the physical "seed of the woman" is passed through Nathan and Mary to Christ and the genetic promises to David are fulfilled in the incarnation of Jesus Christ.

What we have here is an example of the accuracy of the prophesies in God's Word, God anticipates the apostasy of the kings of Judah and the curse, and at the same time it provides a confirmation of the virgin birth because if Jesus had been the physical descendant of Joseph He would have been disqualified by the curse upon Jehoiakim.

The Scriptures therefore provide an accurate and indisputable record of the qualifications of Jesus Christ as the inheritor of the unconditional promises to David. The genealogies of the Jews were destroyed in the destruction of Jerusalem in 70 A.D. leaving the New Testament record as the only source for the genealogies to identify the Messiah.

The prophecies that predict the lineage of the Savior anticipate His birth and the specific location of His birth was revealed in Micah 5:2;

This passage is so clear that it was commonly known that Bethlehem was destined to be the birthplace of the Messiah. The scribes and the chief priests informed Herod of this fact when the Magi came for direction to the King of the Jews. Matt 2:1-6;

Isaiah prophesied that His birth would be a sign: "Therefore the Lord himself will give you a sign: behold, a virgin shall conceive, and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel" Isa 7:14; Matt 1:23;

The date of birth of the Messiah is also revealed within certain limits. According to Gen 49:10; the Messiah was to come before the destruction of the Jewish government that occurred with the destruction of Jerusalem in 70 A.D. and the termination all Divinely sanctioned Jewish rule until Jesus returns.

The prophecies of Dan 9:25; indicate that sixty-nine weeks of seven years would elapse before the Messiah would be cut off have been shown to culminate in the death of Christ.

The Old Testament prophecies provide testimony concerning both His humanity and His deity. In the Old Testament the information is not provided with the same clarity or specificity as in the New Testament, but the major ideas are presented.

The true humanity of the coming Savior is involved in practically all of the Messianic passages From Gen 3:15; where the Messiah is described as the "seed of the woman", to the predictions of the later Old Testament prophets, where the Messiah is declared to be human.

The testimony concerning His lineage, His connection with Israel and the tribe of Judah, His predicted birth in Bethlehem, and His title as a son leave no doubt about His humanity. The Jews expected that the coming Deliverer would be a man, born in Bethlehem from a Jewish mother.

There are also recurring prophecies regarding His deity. According to Isa 7:14; He was to be born of a virgin. The clear intent of this passage is to state that He was to be supernaturally conceived without a human father. The same passage goes on to state the He is to be worthy of the title, "Immanuel" or "God with us".

In Isa 9:6-7; the child born and the son given is described as "Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace."

The predictions of His birth, in Micah 5:2;, describes the child as being born as one "whose goings forth are from long ago, from the days of eternity."

This is the strongest possible statement of His eternal existence before His birth. The combined testimony of these passages leaves no doubt that the nature of the Messiah as being undiminished Deity and true humanity in one person forever.

Many of the Messianic prophecies also portray information about His life, His public ministry that He was to be preceded by a messenger, Mal 3:1; "Behold, I am going to send my messenger, and he shall prepare the way before me: and the Lord, whom you seek, will suddenly come to his temple; and the messenger of the covenant, whom you desire is coming, says the Lord of hosts"

Isaiah had prophesied of the "voice of one that calls, Prepare in the wilderness the way for the Lord" Isa 40:3;. There is no doubt that the reference in both cases is to John the Baptist Matt 3:3; Matt 11:10 ; Mark 1:2; Luke 7:27; and the Gospels all record the fulfillment of these prophecies.

The Messiah was to fulfill the offices of prophet, priest, and king. Moses had predicted the coming of such a prophet in Deut 18:15-18; The New Testament points specifically to its fulfillment in Christ John 1:21; John 4:29 ; John 5:46; John 6:14 ; John 8:28 ; John 14:24; and Acts 3:20-23;

The priesthood of Christ was anticipated in the whole priestly system that was revealed initially by the patriarchal and later the Levitical system. The prophecy given in 1Samuel 2:35; can be only be completely fulfilled by Christ, even if it is partially fulfilled by Samuel.

The prediction of Psalm 110:4; that is quoted in Heb 5:6; and discussed at length in the book of Hebrews, is clearly fulfilled in Christ. Zechariah combines the priestly and kingly offices in his prophecy, "He shall be a priest upon his throne" Zech 6:13; The context indicates that the reference is to Christ.

The kingship of Christ is the first to be mentioned in prophecy and is the most prominent Old Testament prediction. As early as the time of Abraham, God revealed that kings should be among Abraham's descendants.

The kingly line is narrowed to Judah's descendants in Gen 49:10; The hint of a particular king in Gen 49:10; is made more definite in Num 24:17; where it is predicted, "I see him, but not now; I behold him, but not near: There shall come forth a star out of Jacob, And a scepter shall rise out of Israel, and shall smite through the corners of Moab, and break down all the sons of tumult."

A major revelation is found in 2Sam 7:12-16;. Here it is revealed that David's house will be perpetuated in the coming Messiah, that his throne, and kingdom will continue forever. The New Testament confirms this interpretation in Luke 1:31-33;

In Psa 2:6-8; The Lord declares that He will set His Son on the throne in Zion. The dominion and rule of the King is foretold in Psa 110:1-7; The prophecy of His rule on earth is integral in Messianic prediction in Isa 2:1-4; Isa 4:1-6; Isa 49:7; and Isa 52:15;

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