Friday, December 12, 2008

A Big, Long Story

The Bible is a big book and a long story. Sometimes this can be daunting and confusing. It has led many to try and reduce the Bible to a few books, or chapters or even a few verses e.g., “The Roman Road,” or “The Four Spiritual Laws.” The big picture is about promise and fulfillment—Advent and Christmas.

The Bible is both simple and complex. This simplicity has often been misunderstood. Some have thought that we must find a lowest-common-denominator and that this is the Gospel. But the apostle Peter warns us concerning some of Paul’s writing: “… according to the wisdom given to him, … as also in all his epistles, speaking in them of these things, in which are some things hard to understand, which untaught and unstable people twist to their own destruction, as they do also the rest of the Scriptures” (2 Peter 3:15-16). So, when we speak of the “simplicity of the Bible,” we don’t mean that it is without difficulty, we mean it is simple in its unity. The Bible is complex in its details; the details of history (people, places, events, etc.); the details of its doctrine and theology. Yet it is simple unity that enables us to make sense of its complex details. In other words, it is only in the context of the big picture that each person, place, and event can be properly understood. It is its unity that makes its doctrine clear.


The Bible is one story; the story of God, man, sin and redemption. It is a comprehensive story. It traverses all of human history; from creation to the last day. It also concerns itself with matters before and after human history; with time and eternity. It embraces every aspect of life: individual, familial, and corporate. It includes all things visible and invisible: heaven and earth, men and angels, material and spiritual. This one story includes both the natural and the supernatural—ordinary events and extraordinary events—the mundane and the miraculous.

At the center of the story is Jesus Christ. All things were not only created by Him, but also for Him: “From Him, through Him and into Him are all things…”; “In Him all things consist.” He comprehends all of eternity: “The Lamb slain before the foundation of the world”; “He who is the blessed and only Potentate, the King of kings and Lord of lords, who alone has immortality, dwelling in unapproachable light, whom no man has seen or can see, to whom be honor and everlasting power.” He is the Alpha and the Omega; the first and the last. Jesus is the Mediator of the covenant between God and man, the King of kings and Lord of lords, the Ruler of the kings of the earth, the Savior of His people, the light of the world, and the bread of life. All power and authority have been given to Him. It is unto Him that every knee shall bow and every tongue confess, in heaven and on earth, that He is Lord. No man comes to the Father but by Him. He even has accomplished victory over the last enemy—death. The kingdoms of this world have become the kingdoms of our Lord and of His Christ, and He shall reign forever, and ever, and ever. AMEN!

2 comments:

  1. I used to think of "visible and invisible" as two separate categories. But is not every visible thing full to bursting with invisible realities? There are no bare, uninterpreted facts. There are no mere physical apples but visible apples which God created with His meaning, for His purposes, providentially placed in my hand at this time in history.

    ReplyDelete