This has been adapted from a bible-class talk and posted here that all may benefit from the study. Please contact me with any thoughts…
Our subject is Bet-Lechem בת-לחם – the house of bread – which in summary symbolises the Ecclesial household of faith throughout every age. Together, we will trace this symbol throughout scripture: from it’s roots to the prophetic climax yet to be fully realised. From the calling of a people for his name, to the exalting of David, the beloved over his brethren and sisters to stand before Yahweh. His multitudinous loaf body, broken and spread abroad, that all nations may cause themselves to be blessed in the eating of it, and the Glory of Yahweh fills the earth in those who manifest his character. This is an overwhelmingly beautiful subject, far more extensive than we could possibly do justice in this short study.
Firstly, we will establish the symbols from scripture-as a basis for the study. Then briefly follow through the main references to Bet-Lechem בת-לחם and bring out some of their teaching for us today. Finally we will finish with the uplifting prospect of the future age.
So what does Bet-Lechem mean then? It’s composed of two Hebrew words: bet בית, which is the name of the second letter of the alphabet and means a house (or a household); and lechem לחם, which means bread.
In this light we will consider together the symbols: of the house (or household), and of the bread.
It is worth noting here that the whole of creation was created for a purpose, and that is to manifest the glory of Yahweh! It is a pattern of the ultimate purpose of the father with this earth; it was termed good. Everything that was created was created to demonstrate to us some particular part or feature of the future kingdom. By reading scripture comparing passage with passage the symbolism of nature is revealed. And once understood… becomes a constant reminder of the character, the wisdom, the understanding, and the ultimate purpose of our heavenly Father with this earth.
We will now look at how the spirit uses the symbol of the house. 1 Peter 2:5 says, “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”. Note that here the household of faith is a household made up of priests, and they offer up spiritual sacrifices. Under the law of Moses, priests offered both for themselves and also those outside the priesthood-ultimately the entire populous of the earth!
Please come with me to Hebrews 3
Heb 3:1 Wherefore, holy brethren, partakers of the heavenly calling, consider the Apostle and High Priest of our profession, Christ Jesus;
2 Who was faithful to him that appointed him, as also Moses was faithful in all his house.
3 For this man was counted worthy of more glory than Moses, inasmuch as he who hath builded the house hath more honour than the house.
4 For every house is builded by some man; but he that built all things is God.
5 And Moses verily was faithful in all his house, as a servant, for a testimony of those things which were to be spoken after;
6 But Christ as a son over his own house; whose house are we, if we hold fast the confidence and the rejoicing of the hope firm unto the end.
There is one house, one household, the house of Abraham. Built-up and nurtured to maturity by El Shaday, and called out the land of Egypt through the name Yahweh.
Christ is the same as the Hebrew word Messiah, and both mean anointed one. And that anointing is the anointing of the eternal uncreated spirit at his baptism. At this point Yashua (Jesus) became the mercy seat, the Oracle through whom the Father spoke unto his children. It is for this reason that Paul under inspiration declares that Christ built the house; for that anointing spirit did indeed: call the children of Israel out of the darkness of Egypt, built up the house of Abraham, and create every thing that exists.
Christ grew up as a son in the house of his father, under the mosaic heavenlies. But when he had by himself purged us from our sins, sat down at the right hand of the Majesty on high-till all things be put under his feet.
Please come with me to 1 John 5, where we find some very relevant exhortation for us all.
1 John 5:1 – Whosoever believeth that Jesus is the Christ is born of God: and every one that loveth him that begat… loveth him also that is begotten of him.
:2 By this we know that we love the children of God, when we love God, and keep his commandments.
:3 For this is the love of God, that we keep his commandments: and his commandments are not grievous.
If we’re part of this household, then we will love the brethren and sisters just as our father loves them.