Sat, 29 March 2008
Way back in September of 2006 we posted a preview of "The Foundations of Biblical Thinking." This study of Torah has remained one of our most downloaded episodes, so by popular demand here it is in its entirety! So crucial to the Christian life, we will enter into Pentateuch's time-tested wisdom and find that the more we understand these first five books of the Bible, the more rest will come to our souls (cf. Jer 6:16).
Let us remember what Christ said "For truly, I say to you, till heaven and earth pass away, not an iota, not a dot, will pass from the law until all is accomplished. Whoever then relaxes one of the least of these commandments [referring to Torah] and teaches men so, shall be called least in the kingdom of heaven" (Mat 5:19-20). In addition, one cannot grasp Christ without a firm knowledge of the Old Testament.
Only by feeding upon Christ in Word as well as Sacrament will He transform us into Himself. These sacred texts are inspired by the Holy Spirit, without error and are ordained by God to be the means of solid instruction for His people. As the Old Testament is filled with riddles, however, one must dig deeply and prayerfully enter into them in order to it in order to adequately enrich ourselves – we bring folly upon ourselves when we ignore it.
The Old Testament offers four key gifts to Christians: (1) it points to Christ as the messiah and the savior of Israel; (2) it deepens our understanding of Christ by enabling us to read the New Testament in the light of the Old, and vice versa; (3) it provides a type of spiritual road-map for life, describing a saga which we are all fated to relive; and (4) it reformats our thinking to focus more on God, opening the doors into the infinite recesses of the Divine Heart and His sublime mysteries. What bountiful treasures await those who proceed in faith!
Far more than a myth, the Book of Genesis begins with the verse, "In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth" (1:1). In the distant beginnings of the human race, this verse establishes the most important things. Genesis is a book of origins and generations that follows the Hebrew logic that we understand the things of God by understanding His beginning.
If we humbly follow the Word to God on His terms instead of our own, He will increase our faith and will preserve us from doubting the veracity of these books. We simply must take these texts more seriously than we would children's stories; but the fact that some consider Genesis to be a series of mere fables highlights our need to interpret Torah correctly. By an earnest study of Torah throughout these fourteen episodes, we will gain a firm foundation to study the entire Bible, equipping ourselves to spread God's Word to the nations.
Remember that this series and all our other material is available on our webstore, siministries.org/Store. Thanks to Adam the Catholic for leaving us a review on iTunes - if you enjoy these podcasts please take a couple of minutes to leave us a short review there, as that will help us reach new listeners. Finally, this episode marks our first foray into music, and your feedback on that (and anything else, for that matter!) would be greatly appreciated: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Music: The Symphony No. 9, opus 95, "From the New World" by Antonin Dvorak from musopen.com.