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Inter-Testamental Period #16414
Tue Jul 20, 2004 7:02 PM
Tue Jul 20, 2004 7:02 PM
Joined: Feb 2004
Posts: 551
Eastern US
john Offline OP
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At church last week, there was a discussion on why there is nothing in the Bible written concerning the Inter-testamental period. Or maybe the question could be why did God cease to speak through his prophets for that period of time. I could only come up with two reasons. The first being that because the Bible is perfect and completely sufficient for us, it was obviously not God's will to provide any additional information (or speak) in the Bible during that period. This answer isn't always a satisfactory one for most people as they often think it's evading the question. The second is that the Old Testament is primarily concerned with the nation of Israel and God is always speaking through his prophets to Israel. During the Inter-testamental period, because the nation of Israel has been conquered and scattered throughout other nations, there really isn't much of a nation to speak to. I'm not so sure this is either a good or correct reason, but it was all I could come up with. I'm sure there has been a lot written about God's silence during that period. Are there any good articles someone can point to?

Thanks,
John

Re: Inter-Testamental Period [Re: john] #16415
Wed Jul 21, 2004 8:12 AM
Wed Jul 21, 2004 8:12 AM
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The Great White North, Eh!
Henry Offline
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The Great White North, Eh!
The intertestamental period is often referred to as the "400 years of silence," in the sense that God appeared to be silent (although of course He was still working). We can learn a lot about this period from history books, but the reason that there's nothing on it in the Bible is that there was no prophets, or special revelation, or miracles, or the like- again, the Lord was "silent."

The Apocrapha (the un-inspired, and sometimes errant, extra few books that the catholics use in their bible) contain some information on this period, like the books 1 and 2 Maccabees. Again, information like this is fascinating, and gives us an extremely rich understanding of the background for Christ's appearance, but it's not inspired in any way, and is clearly outside the scope of material that the Bible, as God's special revelation to us, is chiefly concerned about.

Hope that makes sense...

Last edited by Henry; Wed Jul 21, 2004 8:13 AM.

(Latin phrase goes here.)
Re: Inter-Testamental Period [Re: john] #16416
Wed Jul 21, 2004 11:29 AM
Wed Jul 21, 2004 11:29 AM

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Dear John,
I think your first observation is the right one, that it was God's will not to speak directly via a Prophet during the 'silent' years. But we should also keep in mind the the Old Testament is not a continuous dialouge between God and His people either. If one were to lay out the history of the Old Testament like a timeline, and mark the periods where God spoke to the People by a prophet, you would find more scilence than dialouge! <img src="/forum/images/graemlins/chatter.gif" alt="" />

Truth be know, there were many 'silent' times in the Old Testament, not just the inter-testimental period. The reason the 400 scilent years stand out is their length (a bit longer than other scolent times), and their obvious bridge between the Old and New Testaments.

God was never silent as long as the people had His Word.
However, if you are a Jew, He's still scilent. 400 years was nothing, for them It's been closer to 3000 years!

Kind regards,

Octavius
www.apcvan.ca/Jerblog

Re: Inter-Testamental Period #16417
Wed Jul 21, 2004 12:23 PM
Wed Jul 21, 2004 12:23 PM
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Interesting thought, that came to mind. The time of Israel in Egypt could be considered silent years. I believe is was about 400 years also.

Re: Inter-Testamental Period [Re: rcwilly2002] #16418
Wed Jul 21, 2004 1:45 PM
Wed Jul 21, 2004 1:45 PM

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good point.

Octavius,

www.apcvan.ca/Jerblog

Re: Inter-Testamental Period #16419
Wed Jul 21, 2004 2:00 PM
Wed Jul 21, 2004 2:00 PM

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Is every single word God spoke either to or through His prophets recorded?


God bless,

william

Re: Inter-Testamental Period #16420
Wed Jul 21, 2004 2:51 PM
Wed Jul 21, 2004 2:51 PM

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William,

The short answer is no. There are places in the Word that indicate communication with the Lord, but no revelation of what that was. The most obvious is when God walked with Adam in the cool of the day. We would think that some sort of communication occurred between Adam and the LORD.
I am also reminded of Christ's earthly ministry where John says, "And there are also many other things which Jesus did, the which, if they should be written every one, I suppose that even the world itself could not contain the books that should be written. Amen. " John 21:25

I know, if I put on my thinking cap I could think of several more instances of divine communication which is indicated in the Word, yet not recorded.

Kind regards,

Octavius

www.apcvan.ca/Jerblog

Re: Inter-Testamental Period [Re: john] #16421
Wed Jul 21, 2004 3:34 PM
Wed Jul 21, 2004 3:34 PM
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Quote
John asks:
Or maybe the question could be why did God cease to speak through his prophets for that period of time.

All that God intended to convey concerning Himself and His redemption which was going to be accomplished through the promised Messiah had been given. Israel, as a type and shadow of the universal Church and as an example to those who would be members of that universal Church had served its purpose. The old economy was about to be replaced by the new in Christ Jesus. Thus God ceased to speak through the prophets.

The understanding of all that had been revealed was to come through Christ; the final Prophet and the Holy Spirit Who would continue and finalize all that God intended to reveal to the Church. Thus, until His arrival, nothing more was spoken by God to man.


Hebrews 1:1-4 (ASV) God, having of old time spoken unto the fathers in the prophets by divers portions and in divers manners, hath at the end of these days spoken unto us in [his] Son, whom he appointed heir of all things, through whom also he made the worlds; who being the effulgence of his glory, and the very image of his substance, and upholding all things by the word of his power, when he had made purification of sins, sat down on the right hand of the Majesty on high; having become by so much better than the angels, as he hath inherited a more excellent name than they.



In His Grace,


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simul iustus et peccator

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Re: Inter-Testamental Period [Re: john] #16422
Fri Jul 23, 2004 8:56 AM
Fri Jul 23, 2004 8:56 AM
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Posts: 551
Eastern US
john Offline OP
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Hi everyone,

Sorry I've been away for a while. Instead of replying individually, I just wanted to thank everyone for their good answers. Although it's obvious now, until you pointed it out, I had never realized that God was silent in much of the OT period. ALso, I think the idea of a separation time between the old and new economies is a good one. I'm going to print out this thread and give it to my friends at church.

John


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