September 26, 2010

Divine-Human Word

How does Jesus as the divine-human Word help us to understand the Bible as divine-human Word?

Plainly stated, Jesus Christ is the centrality of scripture. He is what all the shadows and types of the Old Testament pointed to in their subtle and not so subtle allusions. He is the Messiah that the prophets pointed to and the most visible example of this in the Old Testament is Isaiah’s suffering servant of Isaiah 53.We can reach back as far as the proto-evangelium or “first Gospel” of Genesis 3:15 to see the first promise of a plan for salvation. We then can jump all the way forward to the last verses of Malachi 4 and see the mention of the Day of the Lord. All roads from the Old Testament converge at Calvary and Jesus Christ. All roads depart from or diverge from Christ in the New Testament. We have the Synoptic Gospels which are actually from or about Jesus Himself. We see the new covenant and the church it initiates immediately after His death as the early Christians including the Apostles disperse into the Diaspora and even farther away into Asia Minor, Greece, Macedonia, Rome and eastward through the Middle East.

Christ is the center because He is God and all things are to the glory of God. The majority of the Bible and things narrated/told within it are an outworking of this. How so? It is because most of the Bible from Genesis 3 to Revelation 22 is mankind trying to get back to the state or condition of humanity pre-Genesis 3. Holiness for man is one of the overriding objectives of Scripture. Why? It is because we cannot approach a totally holy and righteous God in our fallen condition. Why? It is because God is a just God and He cannot and will not look upon sin but He is amazingly patient with man for He does not wish to lose even one of us. So why is it important to be holy? It is so that we can have an intimate relationship with Him...for eternity. Unfortunately that is not possible until sin has been atoned for and removed from the picture. It is through Christ’s sacrificial atonement on the cross and more specifically His blood.

For the life of a creature is in the blood, and I have given it to you to make atonement for yourselves on the altar; it is the blood that makes atonement for one's life [sin]. Leviticus 17:11.

A life is demand by God for a life of sin. Our lives are demanded of us in return for our sin. The life will either be the sinner themselves or a suitable substitute.

"For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord." Romans 6:23

To round out this picture we need to read in Hebrews 10 that "the law [in Old Testament] was but a shadow of the good things to come" or a typology and also the blood sacrifice it demanded. So what things came? Not what, who. Jesus Christ came. He is the answer to or the focus of all the progressive revelation of the Old Testament. We now arrive at the parallel in Christ's work that also directly relates back to the Mosaic Law/ Leviticus ceremonial system of the Old Testament. Jesus met the conditions of the Law and not only that, He also paid the ransom to redeem us and He acted as the priest that entered the most holy place when he died offering His blood. All previously symbolically carried out by the priests in the Old Testament now carried out for real by Jesus in a once-and-for-all sacrifice that truly removed the sins of humanity. The ultimate proof that God had truly spoke through the prophets foretelling of a “divine plan”.

Matthew 5:17-18
“Do not think that I have come to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I have not come to abolish them but to fulfill them. I tell you the truth, until heaven and earth disappear, not the smallest letter, not the least stroke of a pen, will by any means disappear from the Law until everything is accomplished.”

Since John 1 tells us that Jesus was the Word and the Word had become flesh we then see the entire linkage of these themes to the original question gel into a coherent whole. As the Good Book states, Jesus sums the word up, fulfills it and interprets it.


Don and Shelly said...

Amen and amen!~~ very well spoken.

Andy Pierson said...

Thank you folks, it is Christ who works thru me.

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