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"The Big Picture" 3/20/24

Dear brothers & sisters,

Several men and I are working through a course Tuesday nights on Bibliology (the study of the Bible). Part of the class was a walk through of the Bible, summarizing each book of the Bible in a short phrase or sentence.

The exercise reminded me of the importance of seeing the Big Picture. 

Jesus once said, 

[39] you search the Scriptures because you think that in them you have eternal life; and it is they that bear witness about me, [40] yet you refuse to come to me that you may have life. 

‭John 5:39-40 ESV‬

In theological terms, the Scriptures are Christotelic, meaning they point to Christ. He is the goal, the one towards whom all the themes of Scripture point. We see Paul in Ephesians 1:3-14, for example, praising God for his eternal plan of redemption in Christ Jesus. I'd encourage you all to read that passage, but to summarize, we might put it this way: God is glorifying Himself by saving a people for Himself and uniting all things to Himself in Jesus (who is God in the flesh) to the praise of His grace. That's another way of saying what Jesus said; that the Scriptures testify of him, in whom there is life everlasting for all who believe in Him. Even so, like the Jews who saw Jesus (their Lord and God) with their own eyes, there is a very real danger for us to miss Jesus.

Do you miss Jesus as you read the Bible?

Is it Him you long to know and love as you study His word?

Several years ago for a talk with the youth, I summarized what the various books of the Bible teach us about God as follows:

Genesis - God the Creator

Exodus - God as Rescuer

Leviticus - The God who is Holy

Numbers - God in the wilderness

Deuteronomy - The law-making righteous God

Joshua - God the Savior

Judges - God the Judge 

Ruth - God our Redeemer

Samuel, Kings, Chronicles - God our coming King

Ezra/Nehemiah - God the Restorer

Esther - God over Empires

Job - God in the midst of suffering

Psalms - God is worthy of praise

Proverbs -  The God of wisdom

Ecclesiastes - The God of meaning and purpose

Song of Songs - The God of Passion

Isaiah - God the Warrior King and Suffering Servant

Jeremiah - The God of Justice

Lamentations - The God who weeps

Ezekiel - The God of a New Covenant 

Daniel - The God over History 

Minor prophets - The God of love and justice

Gospels - God with us

Acts - God the redeemer of all nations, the God of power and glory

Roman's - The God who justifies

Corinthians - The God of Unity

Galatians - The God of ONE gospel

Ephesians - The God of the Church 

Philippians - The God of joy & humility 

Colossians - The God over all things

Thessalonians - God is returning, keep serving Him

Timothy - The God who equips 

Titus - The God of mercy and holiness 

Philimon - The God who restores relationships and changes lives

Hebrews - God's plan fulfilled in Jesus

James - The God of the humble

Peter - God in the suffering 

John - God of Love and Truth

Jude - The God who keeps us

Revelation - God will return to Judge and Restore.

My attempt was far from perfect, but I trust that it helps illustrate that all Scripture is a revelation of God to us, displayed most completely in the person and work of Jesus who is God with us.

How would you summarize the books of the Bible? In what way, do Scriptures like Leviticus and Joshua and 1 Chronicles and Ezekiel point us to Jesus? 

I'd love to hear your thoughts.

Grace & Peace,

Matt

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