The Truth About the Bible
God's Revelation of Redemption
The Bible has stood through the ages though many have tried to destroy it. People have tried to burn it, ban it and belittle it, and yet it remains a book like no other in history.
There is no doubt that the Bible is a very unique book. Besides being the best selling piece of literature of all time, it was written over a period of 1500 years, by about 40 different authors. Yet it is one book with one central theme. It is the revelation of God's great plan of redemption of mankind. And it has one central figure. Jesus Christ is so inseparably linked with God's plan of salvation that there could be no plan without Him. Our Lord Himself said in John 5:39:
"Search the scriptures; for in them you think you have eternal life: and they are they which testify of me."
I. Genesis 3:15 and Christ
From the very beginning of Scripture we see the redemption story unfolding. In the book of Genesis we see that Adam and Eve have sinned, yet God provided a covering for them and made a promise that the seed of the woman would make things right again. In Genesis 3:15 God is speaking of the great battle between the Lord and His people (the seed of the woman) and Satan and His spiritual descendants, or seed, that rages to this day. He says:
"And I will put enmity between you and the woman, and between your seed and her seed. He shall bruise you on the head, and you shall bruise his heel."
The great hatred that most people have for snakes is used to symbolize the great struggle and final outcome between God and the evil one. The seed of the woman, who is Christ, woud suffer. This is symbolized by the bruising of the heel. But Jesus would deal a final death blow to Satan's head. Paul picks up on this theme in Romans 16:20 when he says:
"The God of peace will soon crush Satan under your feet."
II. Abraham, Moses, David and Christ
God chose Abraham out of Ur of the Chaldees, and made him some promises, which included a land and a seed. Abraham's descendants would be as the stars of the heaven and the sands of the sea. And through Abraham and his descendants all the nations of the world would be blessed (Genesis 12:1-3; Genesis 15; Genesis 17) We see from the New Testament that Jesus was the ultimate seed of Abraham who indeed will bless all nations (Galatians 3:16
In Exodus, the people of Israel went into captivity in Egypt, but God didn't forget His people. He lead them out after 430 years, to go to the land promised to Abraham. There is a lot of symbolism pointing to Christ in the Exodus, including the Passover where the Death angel passed over the firstborn in Israel if they put the blood over their doorposts. This is symbolic of the blood of Christ, our passover lamb, who saves us all from sin and death (Exodus 11,12).
Later in history we see King David, a descendant of Abraham, who was promised a descendant that would sit on his throne forever (II Samuel 7). Jesus Christ came in fulfillment of this promise. Jesus' throne and His Kingdom will never cease (Isaiah 9:7; Psalm 89:36; Hebrews 1:8).
III. The Prophets and Christ
There is no getting around it that the prophets were looking forward to the Messiah (or anointed one), and all of the fulfillment of the promises made to Abraham and his descendants. Isaiah, more than 700 years before Jesus was born, wrote of the child that was to be born. The government was to be upon His shoulders. His name would be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Eternal Father and Prince of Peace (Isaiah 9:6). Micah 5:2 reveals that He'd be born in Bethlehem. The prophet Isaiah also wrote in Isaiah 53 of the suffering servant who would be bruised for our transgressions and crushed for our iniquities. And by His stripes we'd be healed. And the Lord would lay all of our iniquities on Him (Isaiah 53:5,6).
These are only a few of the prophecies of the coming Messiah, the Lord Jesus Christ. Lots more could be written about. However, let us move on.
IV. The New Testament and Christ
In this summary we hardly need mention that the New Testament centers around Christ. In the Gospels we see Him as King (Matthew), Servant (Mark), Son of Man (Luke) and Son of God (John). In Acts we see Israel rejecting Christ as Messiah and the beginning of the Body of Christ. We see the Epistles written to believers in Christ, both individuals and various groups or assemblies.
The Pauline Epistles tell us about the mystery hidden in God since the foundation of the world. That mystery is that during this age in which you and I now live, the nation of Israel has been temporarily cast aside and that God is now calling people, both Jew and Gentile alike, into the Church which is the Body of Christ (Romans 9-11; Colossians 1:26,27; Ephesians 3:1-7).
And finally the book of Revelation speaks about the seven year Tribulation period, leading up to the return of Christ, who sets up His Millennial Kingdom of peace. Satan is bound during the Milllennium and can't cause any trouble. But afterward he is released, which ultimately leads to the final battle between Satan and Christ, Satan's defeat and punishment, as well as the punishment of all Satan's followers (Revelation 20:7-15).
Finally, Revelation 21 speaks of the New Heaven and New Earth which Christ will bring about and over which Christ will rule. Then there will be no more tears, and no more mourning or crying or pain, because the first things have passed away (Revelation 21:4)
That is all unless you look back to Paul to learn of the Dispensation of the Fullness of Times in which Jesus has everything at His feet in subjection to Him. This is with the exception of God the Father, to whom the Son will ultimately turn over the eternal Kingdom so that the Father may be all in all (Ephesians 1:10 and I Corinthian 15:20-28).
This is obviously a very broad summary of Scripture. However it serves to show that the Bible indeed is a unique book about a unique theme. It is the revelation of God's great plan of the ages to redeem mankind through His Son, the Lord Jesus Christ. And it shows how God is to bring all things back into subjection to Himself, thus demonstrating His great love, power and glory. What a wonderful theme! And what a wonderful and precious book!
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