More Things (2)

More Things ....  •  Sermon  •  Submitted   •  Presented   •  29:07
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God’s Entourage

Children often ask, “what was there before the world?” The answer most Christian adults would give is that GOD was there. That is true but incomplete. God has company. And I am not talking about the other members of the Trinity.

The heavenly host existed before creation

The Biblical answer is that the heavenly host was with God before creation. In fact, they witnessed it. What God says to Job is clear on that:
Job 38:4–7 ESV
“Where were you when I laid the foundation of the earth? Tell me, if you have understanding. Who determined its measurements—surely you know! Or who stretched the line upon it? On what were its bases sunk, or who laid its cornerstone, when the morning stars sang together and all the sons of God shouted for joy?
when God laid the foundations of earth, the “sons of God” (beney Elohim) were there, shouting for joy. But who are the sons of God? They aren’t human. This is before the creation of the world. We might think of them as angels, but that is not really accurate.

The sons of God (beney elohim) are not human beings but rather part of a divine hierarchy; not angels or archangels

the unseen realm has a hierarchy, something reflected in such terms as angels or archangels. This hierarchy is sometimes difficult for us to discern since we are not accustomed to looking at the unseen world in that way. like a royal household. But an Isrealite would have been able to see this and the terms would have helped.

beney elohim vs mal’ak

the sons of God is a phrase used to describe divine beings with higher level responsibilities or jurisdictions — the term we use for Mal’ak - angel- has a lesser task.. delivering messages.
In Job 38, the sons of God are referred to as “morning stars”. That name description is found outside the Bible in ancient texts from the Biblical world and time. Ancient people thought the stars were living entities. Their reasoning was simple. Many stars moved. That was a sign of life to the ancient mind. Stars were the shining glory of living beings.
The stars also inhabited the divine realm. Literally - in the sense that they were off the earth. The ancients believed that divine beings lived far away from humans in areas humans could not go .. the heavenlies.
Morning stars are the stars one sees over the horizon just before the sun appears in the morning. They signal new life — a new day. The label works. The original morning stars, the sons of God, saw the beginning of life as we know it - the creation of earth.

Right from the start, God has company

Other divine beings, the sons of God. Most discussions of what’s around before creation, omit the members of the heavenly host. That’s unfortunate, because God and the sons of God are the first pieces of the mosaic.

Already a challenge

We’ve barely made it to creation so far, and already we have uncovered some important truths from Scripture that have the potential to affect our theology in simple but profound ways. Their importance, if it isn’t clear yet, will be soon.

Sons of God, divine not human

they witnessed creation long before people were created. They are intelligent nonhuman beings. They are also divine (supernatural if you would, this is a word choice issue). the language is metaphorical, but they exist and are created beings.

Label “sons”

it is a family term, and that is important. God has an unseen household. The logic is the same as that behind Paul’s words in Acts 17 … all humans are God’s offsprings .. household. God has created a host of nonhuman beings who domain is not in our ability to see (unless God chooses). Because He created them God calls them his sons … his household.

A lot is not clear about them

they are divine… with God before creation… what does that mean? how do they relate to God?

God’s Household

Pharaoh (Egypt) means great household. This arrangement of the ruling families was and is common. and the messengers are at the lowest status. The sons of God were administrators.
This is simply the way things are arranged and it should not surprise us that we arrange ourselves in reflection of how God arranges heaven.. remember
Psalm 82:1 ESV
God has taken his place in the divine council; in the midst of the gods he holds judgment:
the word elohim appears twice here…okay elohim is a plural word, in Hebrew you make a masculine word plural by adding - im
While the word is plural … its meaning can be either plural or singular. Most often in the text (2,000 times) it is singular referring to the God of Isreal.
So the first must be singular (his)
second must be plural — in the midst
Psalm 82:6 ESV
I said, “You are gods, sons of the Most High, all of you;
elohim … beney elohim
God is “most high”
Genesis 14:18–22 ESV
And Melchizedek king of Salem brought out bread and wine. (He was priest of God Most High.) And he blessed him and said, “Blessed be Abram by God Most High, Possessor of heaven and earth; and blessed be God Most High, who has delivered your enemies into your hand!” And Abram gave him a tenth of everything. And the king of Sodom said to Abram, “Give me the persons, but take the goods for yourself.” But Abram said to the king of Sodom, “I have lifted my hand to the Lord, God Most High, Possessor of heaven and earth,
Numbers 24:16 ESV
the oracle of him who hears the words of God, and knows the knowledge of the Most High, who sees the vision of the Almighty, falling down with his eyes uncovered:
Psalm 7:17 ESV
I will give to the Lord the thanks due to his righteousness, and I will sing praise to the name of the Lord, the Most High.
the sons of the Most High are clearly called elohim and the Most High is clearly the God of Isreal…
Psalm 82:6 ESV
I said, “You are gods, sons of the Most High, all of you;
the text is not clear whether all the elohim are under judgement or just some of them. The rule of nations they exhibit in this Psalm we will cover later...


we have many translations of the Bible that avoid even the idea that it might be but Elohim can be seen as a place locator … the supernatural… and God is Unique
We should not camouflage what the text says. People do not need to be protected from the Bible.


psalm 82 is not teaching polytheism at all..

Divine Beings are not Human

some take Psalm 82 as God talking to other members of the trinity which is heresy since if true one of them is corrupt....and they have authority that has failed over the earth… REJECT THIS
Others argue that the sons of God are Jews… this is as flawed as the trinity view. At no point in the OT were Jews put in authority over other nations. The opposite is true — they were to be separate from other nations. See Gen. 12: 1-3
Genesis 12:1–3 ESV
Now the Lord said to Abram, “Go from your country and your kindred and your father’s house to the land that I will show you. And I will make of you a great nation, and I will bless you and make your name great, so that you will be a blessing. I will bless those who bless you, and him who dishonors you I will curse, and in you all the families of the earth shall be blessed.”
humans are by nature not disembodied.. elohim is a place of residence term, humans are embodied elohim are not
But the real issue is reconciling the “human view” with other text talking about a divine council of elohim
Psalm 89:5–7 ESV
Let the heavens praise your wonders, O Lord, your faithfulness in the assembly of the holy ones! For who in the skies can be compared to the Lord? Who among the heavenly beings is like the Lord, a God greatly to be feared in the council of the holy ones, and awesome above all who are around him?
the assembly is in the heavens, humans not so much… there is no reference to a human council in the heavens… and if there are no heavenly beings than this Psalm is nonsense....
Look at these texts
Job 1:6 ESV
Now there was a day when the sons of God came to present themselves before the Lord, and Satan also came among them.
Job 2:1 ESV
Again there was a day when the sons of God came to present themselves before the Lord, and Satan also came among them to present himself before the Lord.
Psalm 29:1–2 ESV
Ascribe to the Lord, O heavenly beings, ascribe to the Lord glory and strength. Ascribe to the Lord the glory due his name; worship the Lord in the splendor of holiness.
humans or not? fairly clear if are honest

not polytheism

many say these means Isreal moved from polytheism to theism …this goes to the word elohim....
let’s look at texts that use it
Genesis 2:4–5 ESV
These are the generations of the heavens and the earth when they were created, in the day that the Lord God made the earth and the heavens. When no bush of the field was yet in the land and no small plant of the field had yet sprung up—for the Lord God had not caused it to rain on the land, and there was no man to work the ground,
(Lord God — Elohim)
Deuteronomy 4:35 ESV
To you it was shown, that you might know that the Lord is God; there is no other besides him.
1,000 of times it is GOD
Psalm 82:1 ESV
God has taken his place in the divine council; in the midst of the gods he holds judgment:
Psalm 82:6 ESV
I said, “You are gods, sons of the Most High, all of you;
Judges 11:24 ESV
Will you not possess what Chemosh your god gives you to possess? And all that the Lord our God has dispossessed before us, we will possess.
god — elohim, ELOHIM
1 Kings 11:33 ESV
because they have forsaken me and worshiped Ashtoreth the goddess of the Sidonians, Chemosh the god of Moab, and Milcom the god of the Ammonites, and they have not walked in my ways, doing what is right in my sight and keeping my statutes and my rules, as David his father did.
god =elohim
Deuteronomy 32:17 ESV
They sacrificed to demons that were no gods, to gods they had never known, to new gods that had come recently, whom your fathers had never dreaded.
1 Samuel 28:13 ESV
The king said to her, “Do not be afraid. What do you see?” And the woman said to Saul, “I see a god coming up out of the earth.”
Genesis 35:7 ESV
and there he built an altar and called the place El-bethel, because there God had revealed himself to him when he fled from his brother.
Would any Isrealite, a biblical writer really think that the deceased human dead were equal to GOD… no. It is not a set of attributes but a definer of supernatural… there is no warrant for saying that it is a pantheon.. God is always MOST HIGH, LORD
and it it telegraphed in the text
Exodus 15:11 ESV
“Who is like you, O Lord, among the gods? Who is like you, majestic in holiness, awesome in glorious deeds, doing wonders?
Deuteronomy 3:24 ESV
‘O Lord God, you have only begun to show your servant your greatness and your mighty hand. For what god is there in heaven or on earth who can do such works and mighty acts as yours?
1 Kings 8:23 ESV
and said, “O Lord, God of Israel, there is no God like you, in heaven above or on earth beneath, keeping covenant and showing steadfast love to your servants who walk before you with all their heart;
Psalm 97:9 ESV
For you, O Lord, are most high over all the earth; you are exalted far above all gods.
and look at
Nehemiah 9:6 ESV
“You are the Lord, you alone. You have made heaven, the heaven of heavens, with all their host, the earth and all that is on it, the seas and all that is in them; and you preserve all of them; and the host of heaven worships you.
God is species-unique of the spiritual world.
But elohim can and did assume human form.

Why does God need a council?

He doesn’t … but he has one.
why does God need people .. he doesn’t but we exist.

Are Elohim real?

some say these descriptions are only idols but what does that mean? If just wood the biblical text is invalidated
Deuteronomy 32:17 ESV
They sacrificed to demons that were no gods, to gods they had never known, to new gods that had come recently, whom your fathers had never dreaded.
if just wood — wow… demons exist and the elohim must or the text is suspect...

“No Gods Besides Me?”

if God is God of gods … gods must exist or God is God of nothing...
Isaiah 47:8 ESV
Now therefore hear this, you lover of pleasures, who sit securely, who say in your heart, “I am, and there is no one besides me; I shall not sit as a widow or know the loss of children”:
same language of denial
Zephaniah 2:15 ESV
This is the exultant city that lived securely, that said in her heart, “I am, and there is no one else.” What a desolation she has become, a lair for wild beasts! Everyone who passes by her hisses and shakes his fist.
if the denial phrase means no others exist than we have to assume there are no other cities but Babylon and Ninevah? Which is absurd
the other “gods” can not measure up to GOD

What about Jesus?

he is the only begotten Son of God...
well it is a translation issue
monos (only) gennao (to begat, bear)
but if genes comes from genos ..(class, kind)?
the term means one of a kind
John 3:16 ESV
“For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.
notice the “skip”
John 3:16 KJV 1900
For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.
but this is not the only place
Hebrews 11:17 KJV 1900
By faith Abraham, when he was tried, offered up Isaac: and he that had received the promises offered up his only begotten son,
not his only son … the only one of the promise of his kind ,,, yes but not his only
back to a text from earlier
Job 38:7 ESV
when the morning stars sang together and all the sons of God shouted for joy?
what is going on… it is clear when laid out … but.... not what I’ve thought....
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