#29──水閘──The Floodgates

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第三部分:創造的體系

第二十九章 水閘

水閘──「世界上的水閘是什麼?」你可能會問… 或者更準確地說:「天上的水閘是什麼?」為了開始解釋,我將直接從希伯來文中逐字翻譯創世記1:7(逐字翻譯希伯來語的話是難以閱讀的,故此我將添加一些的標點符號):「神造了穹蒼。把穹蒼之下的水和穹蒼之上的水分開了,就是這樣。」非常有趣,似乎在在創造的第二天中所造的唯一東西是一個分割物…穹頂(穹蒼)──當洪水淹沒挪亞的大地時,就是打開這個東西讓水下來的396──大地之下的水(泉源)裂開、大地之上的水因水閘而淹沒。

「之下的水」和 「之上的水」有何區別,它們是什麼?它們不是一樣的嗎?正如我之前說過的,在挪亞的日子,上帝敞開了穹蒼的水閘,水就出來,降在地上。我們稍後將討論大地之下的水,但大地之上的水必須來自某個地方,它不是從雲彩而來,乃在雲層之上──天上的水從水閘傾瀉而出,作為對人的咒詛。幸運地,耶和華只做了這麼一次,並以彩虹作為立約的憑據──祂不再如此做了。許多我認識的人都在談論著一場偉大的「泥沙洪流」,我指著彩虹發笑:上帝絕不是個騙子,祂將再次從水閘把審判降在地,但不再是天上的水,好消息的是,同樣是「閘門」,但不會僅用於洪水審判的。

以賽亞說以雨為比喻形容天上的窗戶,是為大地帶來救恩:「諸天哪、自上而滴.穹蒼降下公義、地面開裂、產出救恩、使公義一同發生、這都是我耶和華所造的。」397瑪拉基說,它們可以敞開賜下祝福:「萬軍之耶和華說、你們要將當納的十分之一、全然送入倉庫、使我家有糧、以此試試我、是否為你們敞開天上的窗戶、傾福與你們、甚至無處可容。」398顯然,它們不僅僅是比喻,但由於我不想犯「私意解經」(eisegesis)的錯誤,試圖將經文納入我的信念中,所以我將按好的「釋經」(exegesis)方法,嘗試將我的信念納入經文內──雅各的天梯或能幫助我們做到這一點。

「雅各出了別是巴向哈蘭走去。到了一個地方、因為太陽落了、就在那裡住宿.便拾起那地方的一塊石頭、枕在頭下、在那裡躺臥睡了。夢見一個梯子立在地上、梯子的頭頂著天、有 神的使者在梯子上、上去下來。 耶和華站在梯子以上、〔或作站在他旁邊〕說、我是耶和華你祖亞伯拉罕的 神、也是以撒的 神、我要將你現在所躺臥之地賜給你、和你的後裔.你的後裔必像地上的塵沙那樣多、必向東西南北開展.地上萬族必因你和你的後裔得福.我也與你同在、你無論往那裡去、我必保佑你、領你歸回這地、總不離棄你、直到我成全了向你所應許的。雅各睡醒了、說、耶和華真在這裡、我竟不知道。就懼怕說、這地方何等可畏、這不是別的、乃是 神的殿、也是天的門。」399

17節說:「這是天的門」。哇!這是個非比尋常的聲稱。「門」這個字在希伯來語中是 “ַשַׁעַר”,就是”shaar”,在332個被翻譯為「門」(gate) 的詞中,有 35次被翻譯為「法庭」(courts) 或「城鎮」(town),或與古代希伯來文化中「完成事情的主要場所」(Primary place where you get stuff done) 相類似的東西。對於古代的希伯來人來說,它的意思並不單只是「門」,門是長者們坐在那裡判斷誰可以進來、當地的匯率是多少、水的價格是多少、並且經常作為審理律法和個人事務的地方;它也不僅是一個打招呼的地方、也是一個審計、領導和判斷之地。在創世記的這段經文中,它的有趣之處在於它也用在統計你的戰鬥力的地方。而雅各提到這為「天的門」時,人們必須理解它確實是一個偉大的地方。

讓我們看看第12節:「看哪,有梯子立在地上」──這裡的「梯子」是 “sul-lām”,是我們在所有經文中唯一一次看到它,因此,這並不是個完整的概念。這字的字根是 “salal”,可翻譯為「建造」、「高舉」、「高速公路」、「堆積」,甚或是「獎賞」,所以,「梯子」是翻譯者們對它最有可能的描述。實際上,它也可以很容易地以「電梯」、「繩索」,甚至 「火箭」來形容(想像一下,聖經中的火箭),但樓梯似乎是它最佳的描述,所以就用了這個詞,而且我也認為這是個最好的例子。當你動一下腦筋,還有什麼更好、又簡單結構裝置可以讓我們以雙足行走的可以上上下下呢?我們的腿是用來抬起來,一個接一個…,事實證明,這種簡單的運輸方式可能是最好的。「雅各的天梯」似乎表明著,天上的門是一個真正的門、一個「天上的窗戶」。

四福音書都記載,當耶穌受洗時,天開了,他們看到彷彿鴿子降下,落在耶穌身上。400 我們傾向於將這最後一個想像成「雲彩分開」或「一縷陽光」又或諸如此類的童話故事,天開無光,你隨時可見雲彩飄動。路加同時記錄了司提反和彼得都看見天開了。 401

我相信經文中關於天門、天窗、甚至蒼穹上的門,都是由使徒之一的馬太所記錄下來的:「挪亞的日子怎樣、人子降臨也要怎樣。當洪水以前的日子、人照常喫喝嫁娶、直到挪亞進方舟的那日.不知不覺洪水來了、把他們全都沖去.人子降臨也要這樣。那時、兩個人在田裡、取去一個、撇下一個。兩個女人推磨.取去一個、撇下一個。所以你們要儆醒、因為不知道你們的主是那一天來到。」 402 所以我們看見,在挪亞的日子,惡人先沖去、帶走,義人則被存留。

然而,如同挪亞的日子一樣,公義的審判會從水閘中湧出,但審判世界的不再是死亡之水,乃是藉由生命之水來審判世界。

水將再次從水閘傾瀉而出。

「天上的天、和天上的水、你們都要讚美他。 」 403

396 創世記 6-9

397 以賽亞書45:8

398 瑪拉基3:10

399 創世記28:10-17

400 馬太福音3:16,馬可福音1:10,路加福音3:21,約翰福音1:51

401 使徒行傳7:56, 使徒行傳10:11

402 馬太福音24:37-42

403詩篇148:4

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Part Three : The System of Creation

Chapter 29: The Floodgates

Floodgates. “What in the world are floodgates?” You might ask… Or to be more exact: “What in the heavens are floodgates?” To start to explain, I will directly translate Genesis 1:7 from the Hebrew word for word. Hebrew word for word translation is a hard read, so I will add some punctuation. “Made God the firmament. Divided all waters under firmament – from waters above firmament. It was so.” Very interesting. It seems that the only thing created on day two of creation was a divider… The firmament. This was the thing that opened and let the waters down when it flooded Noah’s land.1 The waters under the earth broke and the waters over the earth were let down by the floodgates.

What’s the difference between the “waters under” and the “waters over.” What are they? Aren’t they the same? As I mentioned before, in the days of Noah, God opened the floodgates of the firmament and water came out. Water came down. We will talk about the waters under the earth in a moment but the waters over the earth had to come from somewhere, and they weren’t clouds. They were above the clouds. The waters of the heavens were going to be poured out through the floodgates as a curse on man. Fortunately, YHVH only did this the one time and gave us a rainbow to prove his covenant that He would never do it again. Many people I know talk about a great “Mud Flood” and I laugh and point to the rainbow. God isn’t a liar. He will rain judgement down again on earth from the floodgates, but it will not be the waters above. And the glorious news is that these same “gates” are not only used for judge-flooding.

Isaiah says that the windows of heavens can bring forth salvation on earth as a metaphor of rain: “Open up, O heavens, and pour out your righteousness. Let the earth open wide so salvation and righteousness can sprout up together. I, the LORD, created them.”2 Malachi says they can open up to give blessing. “Bring ye all the tithes into the storehouse, that there may be meat in mine house, and prove me now herewith, saith the LORD of hosts, if I will not open you the windows of heaven, and pour you out a blessing, that there shall not be room enough to receive it.”3 Clearly they were not only metaphor, but since I do not want to be guilty of eisegesis and try to fit the scripture into my belief set, I will press forward with good exegesis and try to fit my belief set into scripture. Jacob’s Ladder might help us do this.

“And Jacob went out from Beer-sheba, and went towards  Haran. And he lighted upon a certain place, and tarried there all night, because the sun was set: and he took of the stones of that place, and put them for his pillows, and lay down in that place to sleep. And he dreamed, and behold, a ladder set upon the earth, and the top of it reached to heaven: and behold, the angels of God ascending and descending on it. And behold, the LORD stood above it, and said, I am the LORD God of Abraham thy father, and the God of Isaac: the land on which thou liest, to thee will I give it, and to thy seed. And thy seed shall be as the dust of the earth; and thou shalt spread abroad to the west, and to the east, and to the north, and to the south: and in thee and in thy seed shall all the families of the earth be blessed. And behold, I am with thee, and will keep thee in all places whither thou goest, and will bring thee again into this land: for I will not leave thee, until I have done that which I have declared to thee. And Jacob awaked out of his sleep, and he said, Surely the LORD is in this place; and I knew it not. And he was afraid, and said, How dreadful is this place! this is no other but the house of God, and this is the gate of heaven.”4

“Tbis is the gate of heaven” verse 17 says. Wow. That’s an extraordinary claim. The word “gate” is “ַׁשַׁעַר” in Hebrew,  which is: “shaar” and of the 332 it is translated “gate” it is 35 times translated “courts” or “town” or something equally similar to the “Primary place where you get stuff done” in the ancient Hebrew culture. It doesn’t simply mean “door” to an ancient Hebrew. The gate was where the old men would sit and judge who could come in, what the local exchange rates were, what the price of water was, and often serve as judges over legal and personal matters. It was not only a place of greeting, it was a place of accounting, leadership, and judgement. What is interesting in its usage in this passage in Genesis is it is also the place to tally up your forces for battle. At the “gate of heaven” as Jacob puts it, one must understand it to be a mighty place indeed.

Let’s look at verse 12. “and behold, a ladder set upon the earth” The word for “ladder” used here is “sul·lām” which is the only time we see it in all of scripture. So it’s not really the complete idea. The root word is “salal” which is translated: “build”, “exalt”, “highway”, “pile up,” or once even “prize.” So, “ladder” is a translators depiction of what it could be. Really it could just as easily be “elevator”, “rope”, or even “rocket.” Rockets in the Bible, imagine that. But since stair seemed the best way to describe it, they went with that. And I think it may be the best example. When you put your mind to it, what better simple construction device is there to go up and down in our bipedal form? Our legs are made to lift up, one after the other… It bears out that this simple mode of transportation could be best. “Jacob’s Staircase” seems to indicate that the gate at the top in heaven is a real gate… A “Window of Heaven.”

All four gospels record that when Jesus was baptized, the heavens opened and they saw the likeness of a dove descend upon Jesus.5 We tend to envision this last one as “the clouds parted” or “a ray of sunshine” or some such fairy tale. The opening of the heavens is no light thing, and you can see clouds move at any time. Luke records both Stephen and Peter also seeing the heavens open.6

I believe the most important passages about the gates, windows, or even doors in the firmament are recorded by Matthew, one of the Apostles. “As the days of Noah were, so the coming of the Son of Man will be. For in those days before the flood they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the day Noah boarded the ark. They didn’t know until the flood came and swept them all away. This is the way the coming of the Son of Man will be. Then two men will be in the field; one will be taken and one left. Two women will be grinding grain with a hand mill; one will be taken and one left. Therefore be alert, since you don’t know what day your Lord is coming. 7 So we see just as in the days of Noah, the wicked will be swept away first. The righteous will be left and the evil men and women taken.

Just as in the days of Noah righteous judgement will come from the floodgates, but it will not be waters of death to judge the world, it will be the Water of Life to judge the world.

Water will fall again from the floodgates.

“Praise him, highest heavens, and the waters above the sky.”8

Footnotes

1 Genesis 6-9

2 Isaiah 45:8 NLT

3 Malachi 3:10 KJV

4 Genesis 28:10-17 WBT

5 Matthew 3:16, Mark 1:10, Luke 3:21, John 1:51

6 Acts 7:56, Acts 10:11

7 Matthew 24:37-42

8 Psalm 148:4 GNT

──Biblical Cosmology by Pauly Hart
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見證

奪回(三)──陳影音 Esther

八歲開始偷竊,十六歲開始吸毒;四次牢獄,接近二十多年的偷竊習慣及毒癮…人的盡頭、神的開始…

teddy hung

丟棄萬事 得著基督──FORMER MAFIA BOSS BECAME A FOLLOWER OF JESUS CHRIST

黑社會大佬信耶穌?當神帶他去了地獄與天堂,便震撼地起了天翻地覆的改變…在人不能,在神凡事都能…

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