Animals, Colors, Metals, Numbers and Signs in Scripture.
term, "four square," implies precision. For something to be four square
the four sides must all be the exact same length and the four corners
must be exactly 90 degrees. The works and buildings of man are almost
never that precise. The most precise instruments and machine
measurements have some tolerances.
Four (Part XI) Four Sore Judgments
Ezek. 14:21 "For thus saith the Lord GOD; How much more when I send my four sore judgments upon Jerusalem, the sword, and the famine, and the noisome beast, and the pestilence, to cut off from it man and beast?" Listed in this verse is God's four sore judgments: sword, famine, noisome beast, and pestilence. Perhaps the most prevalent theme in the entire bible is the judgment of God. God is the judge of all the earth. In addition, several times we read that God is just. In meeting out judgment upon nations, upon groups of people, and upon individuals we see God using these four sore judgments.
God used the sword of the nation of Assyria to destroy and scatter the
10 tribes of Israel as well as to destroy several other nations.
Likewise, God used the sword of Babylon to destroy and bring into
captivity the nation of Judah as well as many other nations. Likewise,
God put away evil from among the children of Israel by use of the sword
in Ex. 32:27 "And he said unto them, Thus saith the LORD God of Israel,
Put every man his sword by his side, and go in and out from gate to gate
throughout the camp, and slay every man his brother, and every man his
companion, and every man his neighbour. 28 And the children of Levi did
according to the word of Moses: and there fell of the people that day
about three thousand men." Today, we are sometimes slain from our evil
ways by the sword of truth: Rev. 1:16 And he had in his right hand seven
stars: and out of his mouth went a sharp twoedged sword: and his
countenance was as the sun shineth in his strength."
God sometimes uses the noisome beast to judge his disobedient people:
1. Ex. 8:16 "And the LORD said unto Moses, Say unto Aaron, Stretch out thy rod, and smite the dust of the land, that it may become lice throughout all the land of Egypt. 17 And they did so; for Aaron stretched out his hand with his rod, and smote the dust of the earth, and it became lice in man, and in beast; all the dust of the land became lice throughout all the land of Egypt."
2. 1 Kings 13:23 "And it came to pass, after he had eaten bread, and after he had drunk, that he saddled for him the ass, to wit, for the prophet whom he had brought back. 24 And when he was gone, a lion met him by the way, and slew him: and his carcase was cast in the way, and the ass stood by it, the lion also stood by the carcase. 25 And, behold, men passed by, and saw the carcase cast in the way, and the lion standing by the carcase: and they came and told it in the city where the old prophet dwelt. 26 And when the prophet that brought him back from the way heard thereof, he said, It is the man of God, who was disobedient unto the word of the LORD: therefore the LORD hath delivered him unto the lion, which hath torn him, and slain him, according to the word of the LORD, which he spake unto him."
3. 1 Kings 20:36 "Then said he unto him, Because thou hast not obeyed the voice of the LORD, behold, as soon as thou art departed from me, a lion shall slay thee. And as soon as he was departed from him, a lion found him, and slew him."
4. 2 Kings 2:23 "And he went up from thence unto Bethel: and as he was going up by the way, there came forth little children out of the city, and mocked him, and said unto him, Go up, thou bald head; go up, thou bald head. 24 And he turned back, and looked on them, and cursed them in the name of the LORD. And there came forth two she bears out of the wood, and tare forty and two children of them."
5. 1 Pet. 5:8 "Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour:"
Finally, God uses plagues to judge his people:
1. Num. 11:33 "And while the flesh was yet between their teeth, ere it was chewed, the wrath of the LORD was kindled against the people, and the LORD smote the people with a very great plague."
2. Num. 16:46 "And Moses said unto Aaron, Take a censer, and put fire therein from off the altar, and put on incense, and go quickly unto the congregation, and make an atonement for them: for there is wrath gone out from the LORD; the plague is begun. 47 And Aaron took as Moses commanded, and ran into the midst of the congregation; and, behold, the plague was begun among the people: and he put on incense, and made an atonement for the people. 48 And he stood between the dead and the living; and the plague was stayed. 49 Now they that died in the plague were fourteen thousand and seven hundred, beside them that died about the matter of Korah."
3. 2 Sam. 24:21 "And Araunah said, Wherefore is my lord the king come to his servant? And David said, To buy the threshingfloor of thee, to build an altar unto the LORD, that the plague may be stayed from the people."
4. 1 Kings 8:38 "What prayer and supplication soever be made by any man, or by all thy people Israel, which shall know every man the plague of his own heart, and spread forth his hands toward this house:"
Thus, God showed forth his four
sore judgments upon the children of Israel and of individuals who had
sinned against him. Likewise, we are judged spiritually by the Lord
through the sword of truth, the famine of hearing the word of God, the
noisome beast of secular government and false religious systems, and the
plague of our own heart. Thus, the Holy Spirit works in us to bring us
to repentance and to be obedient to the word of God.
Four (Part XII) Four Carpenters
Zec. 1:20 "And the LORD showed me four carpenters. 21 Then said I, What come these to do? And he spake, saying, These are the horns which have scattered Judah, so that no man did lift up his head: but these are come to fray them, to cast out the horns of the Gentiles, which lifted up their horn over the land of Judah to scatter it."
The Children of Israel had been scattered by the four horns set forth in Daniel's vision. These four horns were the Babylonian Empire, the Medo-Persian Empire, the Greek Empire, and the Roman Empire. The four carpenters were come to fray the effects of the horns and to build up the Kingdom of God.
The purpose of carpenters is to build. Sometimes it is necessary to tear down poorly constructed or badly constructed structures in order to build a proper structure. This is also true with the gospel. Sometimes it is necessary to show the errors of false teaching in order to build up the truth in the minds of God's people.
The four carpenters would seem to be typical of the four gifts of gospel ministers set forth in Eph. 4:8-13: "Wherefore he saith, When he ascended up on high, he led captivity captive, and gave gifts unto men. (Now that he ascended, what is it but that he also descended first into the lower parts of the earth? He that descended is the same also that ascended up far above all heavens, that he might fill all things.) And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers; For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ: Till we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ."
The apostles, prophets, evangelists, and pastors and teachers were given to edify or build up the body of Christ. Eph. 2:19 "Now therefore ye are no more strangers and foreigners, but fellowcitizens with the saints, and of the household of God; 20 And are built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ himself being the chief corner stone; 21 In whom all the building fitly framed together groweth unto an holy temple in the Lord: 22 In whom ye also are builded together for an habitation of God through the Spirit." 1 Pet. 2:5 "Ye also, as lively stones, are built up a spiritual house, an holy priesthood, to offer up spiritual sacrifices, acceptable to God by Jesus Christ." Acts 20:32 "And now, brethren, I commend you to God, and to the word of his grace, which is able to build you up, and to give you an inheritance among all them which are sanctified." The gospel ministers must have the indwelling and leadership of the Spirit of God in order to build up the church of the Lord Jesus Christ and her members.
Four (Part XIII)
Gifts of the Gospel Ministry
These four gifts are:
It is the Lord who gave these gifts and it is the work of the Holy Spirit to call men to the work of those gifts.
There are similarities and differences in all four of these gifts.
The similarities in these four gifts include the fact that they are all called of God and send of God and preach the same gospel in power and demonstration of Spirit and all are laboring in the Kingdom of God and are working to the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry and for the edifying of the body of Christ. They all are attempting to feed God's people with the spiritual food of God's word. There truly are more similarities than differences between the four gifts.
The main difference between the four gifts of the gospel ministry is the extent of their work. First the apostles had to be eye witnesses of the resurrected Christ. They were given authority that the other gifts weren't given in the establishment of church government and ordinances that were given them from the Lord. They like the apostles had a direct revelation of God's word to deliver unto the people. There were also signs which were associated with the apostles that the other gifts of the gospel ministry did not have. They, like the prophets, and the evangelists went forth to various locations doing the work of evangelists in carrying forth the gospel.
The prophets did not have to be eye witnesses of the resurrected Christ, but they were given a revelation from God of His word to deliver to the people. They like, the evangelists went forth to various locations doing the work of evangelists in carrying forth the gospel.
The evangelists did not have to be eye witnesses of the resurrected Christ, nor were they given a revelation of God word to deliver to the people. They did go forth to various locations doing the work of the evangelists in carrying forth the gospel.
The pastors and teachers did most of the work in the church of which they were made overseers by the Holy Spirit. Their work is primarily in that location until or if the Holy Spirit directs them to another location. They have the responsibility in that location to teach and preach to God's people to edify and build them up in the most holy faith that was once delivered to the saints. In this location, they also do the work of the evangelists, but don't generally go to various locations as the evangelists, prophets, and apostles did.
When the cannon of scripture was completed, then there ceased to be the need for apostles and prophets and thus today we have the two gifts that remain of evangelist and pastor and teacher.