Have you ever encountered the thought that every time you see the word scriptures in your New Testament, its actually referring to the Torah or the writings of the prophets? After all, at the time the New Testament was being written, THERE WAS NO NEW TESTAMENT! What you had were only the Torah (first five books of the Bible) and the writings of the Prophets.
Actually there are three parts together called the TaNaKh
- Torah (tor-AH) — The Law, also called the Pentateuch (Greek for “five books”)
- Nebiim ( neh-veh-EEM) — The Prophets
- Ketubim (keh-tu-VEEM) — The Writings
During the time of Yeshua/Jesus and the Disciples and Paul, that is ALL they had!
We live in these modern days where software programs allow us to do instant word searches of the Bible. Try sometime to do a word search on “Scriptures” in the New Testament and ponder for a bit on how that word is used throughout your results.
Let’s give a great example!
1 Corinthians 15:4
“And that he was buried, and that he rose again the third day according to the SCRIPTURES:”
What could this be referring to? Your first thought might be in Matthew 12:40 where Yeshua/Jesus himself gives the sign of Jonah. But at the time Paul’s letter was sent to the believers in Corinth, the Gospel of Matthew was not available and some scholars agree that it wasn’t even written yet. So Paul is not referring to Matthew 12:40.
So how can Paul state that He (Yeshua) rose again on the third day according to the scriptures? He GIVES us a BIG Clue just a few verses later.
1 Corinthians 15:20
But now is Christ risen from the dead, and become the FIRSTFRUITS of them that slept.
This is why its SO important to understand and read the Torah before you can begin to understand the back of the book. First Fruits was the day during the Feast of Unleavened Bread where the 50 day count began toward the Feast of Pentecost (Shavuot) as stated in Leviticus 23:10-17
That is the SCRIPTURE Paul is referring to in 1 Corinthians 15:4. He can easily show that Yeshua/Jesus fulfilled the Spring Feasts of the Father given in the Torah by His death, burial and resurrection (first fruits). First Fruits being the day after the weekly Sabbath during the Feast of Unleavened Bread as started in the chart below.
Three days and three nights with our Messiah being raised on the day of First Fruits, beginning the count toward the Feast of Pentecost (Shavuot) 49 days later.
We really need to be careful when we read the back of the book without first reading and understanding the front of the book. Otherwise, our ability to Err can be greatly increased as our Messiah said Himself.
“Jesus answered and said unto them, Ye do err, not knowing the SCRIPTURES, nor the power of God.”