Proclaiming the Kingdom
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In a recent post on The Gospel Coalition, I joined Paul in charging pastors and teachers to preach the word (2 Timothy 4:2), which includes the Scriptures Paul would have been referring to in 2 Timothy 3:16––Jesus’s only Bible, the Old Testament. Along with this charge, I unpacked seven tips for preaching the Old Testament well.
Earlier this week cinemas throughout the country showed “Patterns of Evidence: The Red Sea Miracle, Part 1.” As I noted in a previous post, after Christ’s saving of believing sinners from God’s just wrath, Yahweh’s delivering the nation of Israel from Egypts unjust oppression is the greatest saving event in the history of the world (Deuteronomy 4:32, 34–35). And it intentionally stands as a type for Jesus’s saving work (see Luke 9:31), as it both clarifies and predicts how the Lord would save his people from every future enemy. Thus, the second half of the prophetess Miriam’s song that Israel sung at the sea foretells that the surrounding nations were already trembling at God’s majestic display of saving power (Exodus 15:13–18). And the prophets speak of the greater deliverance from the curse as a second exodus that a Davidic ruler will lead on behalf of the world (e.g., Isaiah 11:10–12:6; Jeremiah 16:14–15; 23:5–8; Hosea 3:5). read more…
Next to the saving work of Jesus, the greatest redemptive event in history was when Yahweh delivered Israel from Egyptian bondage––an entire nation set free from slavery to the greatest known power on earth. As Moses himself declared,
For ask now of the days that are past, which were before you, since the day that God create man on the earth, and ask from one end of heaven to the other, whether such a great things as this has ever happened or was ever heard of…. Has any god ever attempted to go and take a nation for himself from the midst of another nation, by trials, by signs, by wonders, and by war, by a mighty hand and an outstretched arm, and by great deeds of terror, all of which the LORD your God did for you in Egypt before your eyes? To you it was shown, that you might know that the LORD is God; there is no other besides him. (Deuteronomy 4:32, 34–35).
We live in a world were most religions outside Christianity teach that we justify ourselves before God by our good deeds (legalism). Then there are professing believers who continue to assert that in light of Jesus’s justifying work on our behalf, calling others to pursue holiness is misguided; we need only to rest in saving grace (anti-nomianism [anti-law]). Finally, there is a strong contemporary voice warning Christians against the Old Testament altogether. Knowing that believers today are not part of the old covenant, how should new covenant saints relate to Mosaic Instruction? read more…
If you follow this resource website, you know I often write about seeing Jesus in the Old Testament. I recently presented a paper at the annual meeting for the Evangelical Theological Society on this very topic, and I highlighted seven ways that the practice of biblical theology helps us to both see and celebrate Jesus from his Bible.
In a world scathed with darkness, light is powerful gift from God. The more extended your time in the night, the more you appreciate and hope for light. In a recent chapel message at Midwestern Baptist Theological Seminary I walk us through Ecclesiastes 11:7–12:1. The Preacher in Ecclesiastes is one who had tasted the bitterness of this world and the bigness and beauties of God and who supplies tangible help for those of us who know the Lord and yet who cannot fully grasp his ways in this crooked and confused world.
In the August 2019 issue of Themelios, I provide a biblical-theological foundation for reading the Old Testament in a Christ-centered way. I argue that Jesus himself provides both the light for enabling us to see and savor what is in the OT and the necessary lens that influences and guides us as we interpret.