Lesson 7. Remnants of salvation: sowing the seed. Wow, all these names!

 

Genesis 5, 10, 11

Hello and welcome, students, pastors, and church leaders, to the 7th lesson at Scope Bible School’s online sessions! We’re delighted to have you join us as we continue our journey of biblical exploration and learning. Whether you’re a returning student or new to our online classroom, we’re here to delve into the depths of biblical wisdom and understanding. As we delve into this lesson, let’s keep our minds open to the lessons that this period of growth and spiritual development holds for us. Feel free to share your thoughts, questions, and reflections as we uncover the layers of this significant era in our biblical exploration.

This lesson focuses on a period that we shall call the ‘X Era‘; a post-Eden period characterized by growth, expansion, and split of the descendants of man ( i.e the human race) from two people (Adam and Eve) to a family, to larger families and later tribes, and then much later to nations and kingdoms (the physical). But most importantly this lesson picks up from where we left off in Lesson 6 by depicting how God started dealing with the sin problem (the spiritual). In lesson 6 we concluded by saying that He started his plan by picking a few individuals and names. These individuals we said (in lesson 1) are termed as ‘Remnants of Salvation‘. The purpose of these individuals was to bear and pass on the seed of Jesus Christ from one generation to another in a way that was so concealed from the notice of the devil.

It’s fascinating to revisit the significance of Jesus Christ, who is a major input in the Kingdom Blueprint’s Methodology, as discussed in Lesson 2. The idea that Jesus was planned by God to play a crucial role– although it is only visible at the end– in introducing the concept of Salvation (much later on in the Salvation History timeline) as an exit plan for man during the process of God dealing with Lucifer and his followers, adds a profound layer to the understanding of God’s Blueprint. The careful and indirect manifestation of Jesus, designed to operate in such a way that it remains hidden from the notice of God’s enemy, Lucifer, highlights the strategic nature of God’s Blueprint. It speaks to the wisdom and foresight in orchestrating salvation in a manner that would ultimately lead to the redemption of man.

To comprehensively study one part of the scope that this lesson focuses on (for this lesson focuses on (1) the events that were happening in the physical sense and (2) the unseen events that were happening in the spiritual world), we shall employ the use of two concepts: Genealogy Tables (Genealogy tables are important at Scope Bible School as are Geography, Social studies, Quantitative Units studies, archeology, etc) and Darwinian Theory of Evolution (Natural Selection).

  1. Genealogy Tables:

Genealogy tables play a crucial role in tracing the lineage of individuals and families across generations. In the context of the Bible, genealogy tables help us to understand the ancestry of key figures and how God’s plan unfolded through specific bloodlines. By examining the relationships and connections between generations, we can gain insights into the physical aspects of human history during the X era and even beyond.

  1. Darwinian Theory of Evolution:

The Darwinian Theory of Evolution, proposed by Charles Darwin in the 19th century, is a scientific theory that explains the process of natural selection as the driving force behind the diversity of life on Earth. It has a very important term called ‘Natural Selection.

Natural selection is the mechanism by which certain heritable traits become more or less common in a population over successive generations based on their impact on reproductive success. In simple terms ‘Natural Selection’ is the process by which certain organisms/species’ character traits survive and these traits get passed on due to their ability to adapt to fit in the environment in case of any changes in the usual environment setting; and by which others go extinct due to their inability to adapt and hence do not survive in the environment. For instance, there was a time (as the theory assumes) when a big environment change in the wild caused only tall trees to be the vegetation that wild animals could feed on. The giraffe is said to have had a shorter neck before this change, but due to the fact that trees with palatable leaves were now tall, it had to adapt or die of starvation. As the rest of the animals that did not develop long necks died off, the giraffe survived and has since passed on the genes of long necks among the giraffe species. The giraffe in this story is termed as selected for, and the other animals that died are termed as selected against.

Selection For: Means organisms with traits (physical or behavioral characteristics) that increase such an organism’s chances of survival and reproduction, and hence these traits become more likely to be passed on to future generations.

Selection Against: This means organisms that lack or fail to develop traits (physical or behavioral characteristics) that increase such an organism’s chances of survival and reproduction, and hence these traits become extinct and are less likely to be passed on to future generations.

Now let us compare that with what we shall term as Divine Selection. While the Darwinian Theory of Evolution is a scientific framework primarily applied to the natural world, we can draw some metaphorical parallels to the divine selection process of individuals in the biblical narrative, particularly in the context of God’s mission to establish the Remnants of Salvation. There were individuals who were selected for, and others who were selected against; as you read the Bible you will see such figures (individuals, families, nations). In natural selection, organisms survive and are favored in the ecosystem by physically developing adaptative features; in divine selection on the other hand, people are selected for because of faith (Hebrews 11), but this faith is not something that they can boast about. It is just bestowed upon them purposefully, to be able to fulfill God’s task (any particular task, or the general task of passing on the seed of God, or both). This is called Grace; that is why a phrase like ‘…Noah found Grace in the eyes of the Lord…’ does not necessarily mean that Noah was living right by his own ability and power. Noah is reported to have been righteous before the Lord, but he was only righteous because the Lord gave him the Grace to be righteous, his righteousness being influenced by God. Why? Because God wanted him to (1) preserve the next generation and (2) he had the role of passing on the seed of God to the following generation. Now while a giraffe can boast of being able to develop a long neck in order to eat the eaves of tall trees, a person like Seth or Noah or Abraham can not boast of being selected to bear the seed of Christ. In the same way Christians can not (or should not) boast of their Christianity or their level of faith, but instead should be glad that they found undeserved Grace before God, and this Grace enabled them to develop that faith in order to please God (for without faith it is impossible to please God). So in essence it is God pleasing himself through us! I hope that is starting to make sense.

Individuals who were selected against are those who seem to have been rejected by God (e.g Saul, the first king of Israel, who lost his position because of disobedience (1 Samuel 15:23); Judas Iscariot, one of the twelve disciples, who faced consequences for betraying Jesus (Matthew 26:24), etc. But in the essence of this study, individuals that were selected against are simply the ones who were not chosen to bear God’s seed, the ones that are not remnants (Cain, Ham, Japeth, Haran, Nahor, Ishmael, Esau, the eleven brothers, etc). Sometimes God simply rejected someone without any reason, or because of a reproach (which God Himself purposed that that person should bear. How? Sometimes God manipulated Lucifer to do to man what he is good at doing– tempting, leading to sin and inflicting pain and sorrow– so that God in seeming to punish that person for their reproach, He was actually having His bigger purpose fulfilled. Judas Iscariot for instance was selected against to be tempted by Lucifer because he already was a greedy thief, but if he had been a righteous person we would not have received salvation, would we? ). It might be surprising that Judah, a not-so-righteous folk (womanizer, liar and opportunist), was chosen to bear the seed of Christ instead of, you guessed right, Joseph! Judah just found unmerited and unexplainable favor and Grace. Imagine having to call Jesus the ‘lion of Jospeh’!

Task 1: Read Malachi 1:1-4 and identify the figures that were selected for, and ones selected against in the passage. In your free time think of other figures from other passages in the Bible; write down a list and share it with a Bible study friend. Discuss.

Task 2: Read Genesis 15:6 and try to explain to a friend how and why Abraham was selected for. (Mention words like faith and grace).

 

The Remnant Pattern

God worked out his plan by a very intricate pattern that involved individuals, families, nations, a nation, and later nations. When you observe from the general viewpoint of Bible history (the Salvation History Timeline), these remnants were formed according to a certain pattern; or to put it more clearly, the seed was passed on according to a certain pattern. This is what we are calling the Remnant Pattern, and let’s break it down.

 

Individuals (From Seth to Noah), Families (Shem, Ham, Japeth), Nations (the descendants of Shem, Ham and Japeth), Individual (Shem), Family (Family of Terah),  Individual (Abraham), Individual (Isaac), Individual/Family (Jacob/Israel), Nation/Kingdom (12 Tribes of Israel), Individual (Judah), Family (Family of Jesse), Individual (David), Individuals/Families (David to Joseph and Mary), Individual (Jesus), Nations (Gentile Nations/Kingdoms– other nations).

  1. Individual levels: At the individual levels, specific individuals were chosen as bearers of the seed of salvation.
  2. Family levels: The remnant pattern extends to families, where the chosen individuals passed on the seed of salvation to their descendants.
  3. Tribal level: The twelve tribes of Israel, arose from the twelve families of the twelve sons of Israel (Jacob), who was a Shemite through Abraham his grandfather.
  4. Nation/Kingdom level: The twelve tribes of Israel became a nation chosen by God which carried the seed of salvation through its history. At this point, they became a kingdom or nation and distinguished themselves not as Shemites but Israelites.
  5. Nations Level: Following Jesus’ life, death, and resurrection, the remnant pattern expanded globally as the message of salvation reached beyond the borders of Israel. The Great Commission (Matthew 28:19-20) signifies the global extension of the Remnant Pattern to the Gentile Nations of the world. When Israel rejected Jesus Christ, a chance for salvation was availed to the other nations, which are popularly known as Gentile nations; but later Israel, according to Prophecy, will be joined with their Gentile counterparts into salvation when their eyes will be opened so that they embrace their messiah. When this comes to pass all nations will have been gathered into salvation.

This intricate pattern, operating at different levels from individuals to nations, illustrates the depth and complexity of God’s plan. The remnant pattern ensures the continuity of the seed of salvation across generations, weaving together the stories of diverse individuals, families, a nation, and nations into the overarching narrative of God’s redemptive plan. It was made complicated in order to be ‘attack-proof’ in case Lucifer might try to interfere. And interfere he tried. Numerous times.

Please click here and here to study the pattern of the remnants observed in the genealogy of Jesus Christ.

The study on the X Era will largely focus only on individuals and families. As a matter of fact, the Law/Torah books as well as Judges books cover only these two aspects. The nation and nations aspects are covered in the books that come in later on in the dawn of the Old Testament (931 BCE to 433 BCE) i.e the Kings books (1&2 Samuel, 1&2 Kings, 1&2 Chronicles) and the books that follow (if organized chronologically that is).

 

How Seth becomes the first Remnant: Genesis 4: 8-25

Cain and Abel, the sons of Adam and Eve, present offerings to God. God favors Abel’s offering, which leads to jealousy and anger in Cain’s heart. In a fit of rage and jealousy, Cain lures Abel into the field and kills him. The Lord confronts Cain about the murder, and as a consequence, Cain is banished from the land, becoming a wanderer. This leads to the rise of Seth (Genesis 4:25). This is how: in the aftermath of these tragic events, Adam and Eve conceive another son, whom they name Seth. Genesis 4:25 states: “And Adam knew his wife again, and she bore a son and called his name Seth, for she said, ‘God has appointed for me another seed instead of Abel, for Cain killed him.'”  The phrase “another seed instead of Abel” emphasizes God’s providential response to the loss of Abel. It is highly possible that God had purposed the seed of salvation in Abel. The devil is seen planting jealousy and anger in Cain to kill Abel; he masterminded the murder of Abel. The reason behind this murder is not because Lucifer realized the essence behind the person of Abel, but because unlike the other three humans (Adam, Eve, and Cain) recorded at this point in history, Abel has not displayed any traits of sin. This drives the devil crazy and into suspicion. What’s with this little chap who doesn’t seem to sin? He looks suspicious. He therefore kills Abel. The devil does not actually realize that he has done something very grave: cut off God’s remnant! God does something symbolic after this murder: he banishes Cain from His sight, something similar to what He had done to Lucifer and that He will do to him when he throws him into flames of fire. But He, almost immediately, provides a replacement, Seth, through whom God’s seed plan continues. This act of God shows His mercy and commitment to the fulfillment of the Remnant Pattern.

Through chapters 5 to 11, the complex and multiplying nature of the human race seen through growing societies, paints a vivid picture of the challenges faced by the human race during the X era. The earth is increasingly getting sophisticated socially, politically and economically, with all these complexities based on a certain kind of knowledge (of good and evil of course)— people are dividing and expanding, and nations are arising and governments are being formed from small ‘primitive’ units of leadership. The devil had evidently made a very effective template that was producing results for him which required no more effort from him at all. All that we notice being innovated by the human race in this era (whether physically tangible things or conceptual ideologies) are an effect of a combination of 3 things: (1) the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, (2) the curses of God and (3) the sinful nature/seed. In the midst of this complexity, God, with His divine foresight, was working on a solution—a solution that involved sowing a seed in a select line of people through Seth. From all the multitude of individuals spread all over the face of the earth, everyone doing as they pleased, everyone carrying on with their own affairs, just a few here and there living godly lives, God singles out Seth as the individual through whom all these thousands would be saved from the danger that they were unconsciously headed to face.

 

The Genealogies of the X-Era

The X era can be further divided into 3 sub-eras (let’s call them that):

Era 1: From Adam to Seth to Noah (chapter 5).

Era 2: the Table of Nations and Kingdoms arising out of Noah’s 3 children (chapter 10).

Era 3: Shem to Abraham (Chapter 11:10-32).

 

We shall discuss these 3 periods, in reference to how God is dealing with the Sin Problem as follows:

 

Era 1: From Adam to Seth to Noah (Chapter 5)

This period falls approximately between 4004 BC to 2948 BC. Click here and here to see the Family tree/Genealogy Table.

Cain’s descendants are outlined in the previous chapter (Genesis 4). However, it’s noteworthy that all of Cain’s descendants perished in the flood (Genesis 7), so the only descendants who are accounted for after the flood are from Seth. This is how Cain is selected against.

 

Era 2: The Table of Nations and kingdoms arising out of Noah’s 3 children (chapter 10)

This period falls approximately between 2000 to 1500 BC, the post-flood period.

Click here to see Genealogy of Noah’s family (the 3 children: Shem, Ham and Japeth).

The descendants of Shem, Ham, and Japheth form major nations and kingdoms that play significant roles in biblical history. Notable kingdoms include Egypt, Philistia, Canaan, Aram, Cush, Gog and Magog, etc. These are the kingdoms that we find later on the Bible. It is important that, before we encounter these kingdoms as the Bible history picks up momentum in the later chapters of Genesis and the books that follow that, we try to understand them here at the primitive stage of their formation.

Click here

and here

and here to see the Table of Nations arising out of the 3 children of Noah and study their origin and settlements.

In this era, Noah pronounces a curse on Canaan, son of Ham (Genesis 9:25-27), notable in this curse is that he would be live and serve under Shem. This way Shem is selected for. This curse has implications for the future, it introduces a prophetic element into the narrative and lays the foundation for the relationship between Canaanites and Shemites (specifically the Israelites). It is interesting to note that God did not pronounce the curse unto Ham, though he was the perpetrator, but unto his son Canaan; perhaps because for some reason he was setting a foundation for contention between cousin and cousin (Canaan and Israel) other than brother and brother (Ham and Shem). Perhaps He was in the broader sense setting a foundation upon which He would give all that belonged to Canaan unto Israel as a way of showing his partiality towards Israel and as a way of blessing her. A contention between Ham and Shem would be but insignificant.

 

Era 3: Shem to Abraham (Chapter 11:10-32).

This period falls approximately between 2000-1600 B.C.

From Genesis 11:10 onwards, the biblical narrative narrows its focus to Shem’s lineage. The other two sons of Noah (Hamites and Japethites) appear later in the Bible history notably in the context of the Canaanites and their wrangles with their cousins the Israelites. The Japethites are seen much later during the rise of Gentile Empires (Greeks and Romans) at the dawn of the Old Testament.

Click here

and here to see Shem’s Genealogy down to Abraham. This lineage is of particular importance as it leads to the patriarch Abraham, who plays a pivotal role in God’s redemptive plan. This is a way Abraham was selected for. See you next week…

7 thoughts on “Lesson 7. Remnants of salvation: sowing the seed. Wow, all these names!”

  1. Ooh my God!!!…. I can’t stop thinking of how gracious our God is !!!!
    Imagine making Judah’s house the greatest of all the 12 tribes, in spite of all what he had done, it further sheds for me a picture that our God doesn’t consider what kind of people we are, our characters or anything bad about us.
    Imagine it’s Judah himself who even convinced the others to sell Joseph… Hmmm., womaniser, liar,… all these but he was made great of all his brothers 🤦.
    For real, we just find underserved favour in sight of the Lord and there indeed shouldn’t be need for anyone to boost around, …

  2. I don’t know if it’s fine when I share my answers here…. 👇👇
    Task 1.
    a)Figures selected for ..
    -Jacob.
    -Judah.
    b)Figures selected against ..
    -Esau.
    -Judah’s brothers .

  3. Allow me make some corrections on the above answer for task 1.

    a) figures that were selected for.
    -seth, shem, Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, Judah , David, Joseph and Mary.
    B)Figures selected against.
    -Cain, Ham,Japeth, Haran, Nahor, Ishmael, Esau, Eleven brothers .
    Thank you teacher, am learning something everyday ✍️✍️✍️✍️

    1. SCOPE BIBLE SCHOOL

      From the text in Malachi 1 the people that were selected for in the passage are Jacob/Israel against Esau/Edomites. This is just to add onto your already correct answer. Great work.

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