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God’s Big Picture. Tracing the Storyline of the Bible. Introduction. David and Goliath. What application would you draw from David’s actions in killing Goliath? What if I told the story like this... One young boy From Bethlehem Representing his brothers

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god s big picture
God’s Big Picture
  • Tracing the Storyline of the Bible
david and goliath
David and Goliath
  • What application would you draw from David’s actions in killing Goliath?
  • What if I told the story like this...
    • One young boy
    • From Bethlehem
    • Representing his brothers
    • In the place of another representative
    • Defeats an enemy that a whole nation could not face
    • After decisively defeating the enemy, his brothers participate in the victory
what do i do with
What do I do with...
  • Dietary laws
  • Animal sacrifices
  • The slaughter of the Canaanites
  • The Exodus
  • ...just examples (good or bad)?
  • ...just stories?


other applications
Other Applications
  • What do I say to someone who has lost someone close to them?
  • What do I say to someone who is struggling with depression?
  • What is the purpose of the church?
  • What is the purpose of missions?
  • How do we care for the poor?
  • What is the relation of the church to the state?
not a book of quotes
Not a book of quotes

“If we want to understand any part of the Bible properly, we must consider where it fits in that great plan and how it contributes to it.”


where are we going
Where are we going?
  • Know the themes of Scripture
  • Within any text of Scripture, know where it comes from and where it is going
  • Discover how each part of the Bible points to Jesus Christ and the salvation he accomplished
the bible
The Bible...
  • ...is one book -- not an anthology
  • ...is a diverse collection of writings
  • ...has one Author and many authors
  • ...has one main subject
  • ...is not a book of quotations
about the whole
About the whole
  • You search the Scriptures because you think that in them you have eternal life; and it is they that bear witness about me (John 5:39)
  • “And [Jesus] said to them, “O foolish ones, and slow of heart to believe all that the prophets have spoken! Was it not necessary that the Christ should suffer these things and enter into his glory?” And beginning with Moses and all the Prophets, he interpreted to them in all the Scriptures the things concerning himself.” (Luke 24:25–27)
  • “But what God foretold by the mouth of all the prophets, that his Christ would suffer, he thus fulfilled. Repent therefore, and turn back, that your sins may be blotted out,” (Acts 3:18–19)
the theme of scripture
The Theme of Scripture
  • ...God’s people
  • ...in God’s place
  • ...under God’s rule and blessing


a bible overview the kingdom
A Bible Overview: The Kingdom...
  • OT: Promises Made
    • Pattern
    • Perished
    • Promised
    • Partial
    • Prophesied
  • NT: Promises Kept
  • Present
  • Proclaimed
  • Perfected
the power of patterns
The Power of Patterns
  • Why do we like patterns?
  • Patterns in Scripture are sometimes referred to as “typology”
  • A “type” points to or foreshadows the “antitype”
limits of typology
Limits of Typology
  • There must be a real, historical, and essential resemblance or analogy between the type and antitype
  • The type must be providentially designed to foreshadow God’s ultimate redemptive activity in Christ. This means that accidental or even thematic similarity is not enough to make a type/antitype connection
  • Unlike a mere symbol, which represents a general truth or idea, a type by its very nature must look forward to its specific and greater fulfillment in the anti-type

Michael Lawrence, “Biblical Theology in the Life of the Church”, page 78

god author of all creation
God - author of all creation
  • What did God say after creating all things?
  • How does this affect how we view the physical world?
  • When Adam and Eve sinned, who and what was affected?
  • Does God save us spiritually only or does he also save us physically?
god king of creation
God - king of creation
  • What is the relationship between God and nature?
  • Is nature divine?
  • Does God speak through nature?
humans peak of creation
Humans - peak of creation
  • Are humans animals?
  • How are humans different from the rest of creation?
  • What are the implications of saying that humans are merely animals?
  • What are the implications of being made in the image of God?
rest the goal of creation
Rest - the goal of creation
  • Why did God rest on the seventh day?
  • Note the perfection in relationships:
    • God with humans
    • Humans with each other
    • Humans with creation
questions and discussion1
Questions and Discussion


a snake in the garden
A snake in the garden
  • What are some questions you have after reading Genesis 3?
  • Are those questions ever answered in Scripture?
  • Should we understand Genesis 3 literally?
rebellion against god
Rebellion against God
  • How did God exercise his rule in the kingdom?
  • How was God’s rule usurped?
  • What did Adam and Eve expect to be the consequences of their rebellion?
  • What were the actual consequences?
  • Genesis 5 contains genealogies. What could be important about a family tree?
does man turn around
Does man turn around?
  • The Flood -- waters cover the earth again, as in Genesis 1:2
  • The Tower of Babel (Gen. 11) -- creating a kingdom that doesn’t have God as the king
god s eternal plan
God’s Eternal Plan
  • Read Ephesians 1:3-6
  • Note the scope of time in this passage
  • In light of what we’ve learned so far, what sort of questions does this passage raise?
amazing grace




Amazing Grace
  • Note the theme of human sin and God’s response of judgment that runs through Genesis
  • Where do you see God’s grace in Genesis?
what is a covenant
What is a Covenant?
  • Two types: conditional and unconditional
  • Sealed in blood
  • A sign as a reminder
examples of covenants
Examples of Covenants
  • Adamic
  • Noahic
  • Abrahamic
  • Mosaic
  • New Covenant
covenant with abraham
Covenant with Abraham
  • Read Genesis 12:1-3
  • What was special about Abraham? Why him?
  • What was Abraham promised?
  • Every covenant had a sign. What was the sign of this covenant?
the sabbath as a sign
The Sabbath as a Sign
  • "You are to speak to the people of Israel and say, 'Above all you shall keep my Sabbaths, for this is a sign between me and you throughout your generations, that you may know that I, the LORD, sanctify you. (Exo 31:13 ESV)
  • Every culture had laws (i.e., the ten commandments and what followed)
  • Israel was unique in the reason that all of life stopped on the Sabbath
    • In observance of God’s resting after creation
    • As a witness to those around them that they were in covenant with God
the sabbath
The Sabbath?
  • Note that in the Hebrew calendar (on which the Christian calendar is based), the week starts with Sunday and ends with the Sabbath or Saturday (where according to the Genesis (as described in the Bible) the Lord rested from creating the world).
  • In medieval times, Catholic Popes have decreed the Sunday to be the official day of rest, in order to dissociate the Christian from the Hebrew belief.
  • It appears that this actually happened with the Emperor Constantin (sic), who converted to Christianity but still worshipped the Sun god and therefore moved the Christian sabbath to the day of the Sun. Nowadays, the Sunday AND the Saturday are commonly considered (and used as) days of rest, usually referred to as the "week-end".
  • (from "perldoc Date::Calc")
why sunday and not saturday
Why Sunday and not Saturday?
  • Worshipping on Sunday has been an early church tradition even dating back to the New Testament
  • All four Gospels state that the Lord rose on the first day of the week, Sunday (Mat 28:1, Mark 16:2, Luke 24:1, John 20:1
  • Read Colossians 2:16-22 (also Rom 14:5-6)
  • Also 2 Cor 3 and all of Galatians
why sunday and not saturday1
Why Sunday and Not Saturday?
  • On what day of the week did Jesus die?
  • What do you do on the next day, the Sabbath?
  • What did Jesus say right before he died?

When Jesus finished his work, he entered into God’s Sabbath rest. We will one day enter into God’s rest through Jesus.

We trust in the finished work of Jesus.

“Our Lord died on the eve of that Jewish Sabbath, at the end of one of these typical weeks of labour by which His work and its consummation were prefigured.” (Vos, “Biblical Theology”, p. 142)

  • Long chapter
  • We’re still in Genesis! (What does this tell you about Genesis?)
  • Covering 1000 years of history, from Abraham to Solomon
  • Adding a fourth element to the promise of the Kingdom of God: a King
purpose of this chapter
Purpose of this Chapter

“The aim of this chapter is to see how God’s promise of the kingdom is partially fulfilled in the history of Israel.” (pp. 59-60)

people abraham
People: Abraham
  • Abraham is promised a great nation through his children, of which he has none.
  • He has a child by Hagar, but this is not the child of the promise.
  • “Right at this early stage we are being taught that it will take a miracle for the gospel to be fulfilled.” (p. 62)
  • Abraham is asked to sacrifice Isaac.
    • Example of Abraham’s faithfulness to believe the promises of God
    • Not primarily an example of obedience
people jacob esau
People: Jacob & Esau
  • God preserves his people in spite of themselves
    • Jacob blackmails Esau and tricks Isaac
  • Romans 9:10-13 explains why Jacob received the promise despite his deceit
people joseph
People: Joseph
  • Sold into slavery by his brothers
  • Raised to prominence in Egypt
  • Saves his brothers
  • Genesis 50:19-20
the character of god
The Character of God
  • “Yahweh” - YHWY - Lord - I am who I am
  • “If we want to know who he is, we must watch him act in history on behalf of his people.” (p. 65)
  • “The Bible does not just tell the story of God’s work of salvation; at the same time it reveals God’s character. ... Sometimes we miss the point by asking too quickly, ‘What is it saying to me?’ A good first question to ask...is, ‘What does this tell me about God?’...The Bible is, above all, a book about God.” (p. 65)
people salvation by substitution
People: Salvation by Substitution
  • God is teaching both the Israelites and us what it means to be saved
  • Salvation is by substitution
  • Salvation requires the shedding of blood
  • Example: The Israelites were to sacrifice a lamb and put the blood over their doors.
people salvation is by conquest
People: Salvation is by conquest
  • The Israelites crossed the Red Sea with Egyptians closing in. God conquered their enemies.
  • God revealed himself to be more powerful than human authorities.
r b the law
R&B: The Law
  • What was life like for Adam and Eve when they were obedient under God’s law?
  • What was life like after they rebelled?
  • What does it mean that the Israelites are now given the law and the tabernacle?
  • “[The Law] is not intended to be the means by which anyone gets right with God. The Israelites are already God’s people through his grace.” (p. 68)
r b the tabernacle
R&B: The Tabernacle
  • Look at the diagram on page 71
  • What do we learn about God by looking at the tabernacle?
  • What took place daily in the tabernacle? Yearly?
  • Did these sacrifices really atone for sin? (See Hebrews 10)
  • What was the ultimate purpose of the tabernacle?
r b summary of sacrifice
R&B: Summary of Sacrifice
  • A sacrifice for a man: Abraham and Isaac
  • A sacrifice for a family: the Passover
  • A sacrifice for a nation: the Day of Atonement
  • A better sacrifice for the world: the death of Jesus
god s place partial fulfillment
God’s Place - Partial Fulfillment
  • The Promise: “To your offspring I will give this land” (Gen 12:7).
  • God’s people - check
  • God’s rule and blessing - check
  • God’s place - ???
place numbers
Place: Numbers
  • Will they go into God’s place?
  • 1 Cor 10:6
place deuteronomy
Place: Deuteronomy
  • Moses: “If you fully obey the Lord your God and carefully follow all his commands that I give you today, the Lord your God will set you high above all the nations on earth” (Deut 28:1).
  • The curses for breaking the covenant were as horrible are the blessings for keeping it were great.
  • Will the Israelites keep the Mosaic Covenant?
place joshua
Place: Joshua
  • The Promised Land - the land of the Kingdom of God -- is not vacant
  • God orders the slaughter of the Canaanites. How do we believe in God in light of such an order?
  • The Israelites take the land...or do they?
  • Their taking of the land was both a blessing and a warning. Which will it be?
king judges
King: Judges
  • What was the people’s part of the Mosaic covenant?
  • Given the tenor of Judges, are the people fulfilling their part of the Mosaic covenant?
  • “In those days Israel had no king; everyone did as he saw fit” (Judges 21:25).
god s king
God’s King
  • Were the Israelites supposed to have a King in Canaan?
king 2 samuel
King: 2 Samuel
  • Is David the serpent-crusher of Genesis 3:15?
  • Is David the great ruler of Judah promised in Genesis 49:10?
  • 2 Samuel 7:12-16
king solomon
King: Solomon
  • “Not one word has failed of all the good promises he gave through his servant Moses (1 Kings 8:56).
  • They are God’s people in God’s place enjoying God’s rule and blessing.
  • And then Solomon got married. A lot.
  • Judgment followed after Solomon died.
kings the other kings
Kings: the other kings
  • The kingdom splits: the northern kingdom (“Israel”, with its capital Samaria) breaks away from the southern kingdom (“Judah” with its capital Jerusalem)
  • Israel immediately becomes steeped in idolatry are were taken over in 722 B.C.
  • 136 years later, Judah also abandoned the Mosaic covenant and were taken over in 586 B.C.
a broken model
A broken model
  • The history of Israel is a model of what God is doing
    • Rescue from slavery in Egypt points to rescue from slavery of sin
    • God’s presence by the tabernacle points to God’s presence of the Holy Spirit through the work of Jesus
    • The sacrifices were reminders through which God worked, but it was only through Jesus that sins were and are forgiven
    • The kings were of some value, but Jesus is the great King
  • The model has been rejected, but God has not forgotten his promises. This is the message of the prophets...
what is a prophet
What is a prophet?
  • God’s mouthpiece
  • Covenant enforcer or lawyer
themes of the prophets
Themes of the prophets
  • What were two themes of the prophets?
  • What were these themes based upon?
god s people
God’s people
  • A remnant
  • A new exodus
  • The servant
  • The inclusion of the nations
god s place
God’s place
  • New temple
  • New creation
god s rule and blessing
God’s rule and blessing
  • The new covenant (Jeremiah 31:31-34)
  • The new king (Dan 7:13-14, Isaiah 9:6-7)
  • Great blessing
return from exile
Return from Exile
  • Israelites return from exile in Babylon
  • Is this the fulfillment of the prophecies?
  • Will they enjoy the blessings of the covenant?
  • Have they met the conditions of the covenant?
the promise of fulfillment
The Promise of Fulfillment
  • The people are still disobedient
  • God’s King has not yet come
  • Behold, I send my messenger, and he will prepare the way before me. And the Lord whom you seek will suddenly come to his temple; and the messenger of the covenant in whom you delight, behold, he is coming, says the LORD of hosts.(Malachi 3:1 ESV)
the time has come
The time has come
  • Jesus began his ministry by saying, “The time has come. The kingdom of God is near. Repent and believe the good news!” (Mark 1:14-15)
  • Imagine you are there when Jesus spoke. A Jew next to you asks, “What’s he talking about?” How would you explain Jesus’ words?
  • How should we view the State of Israel?
  • Should we be anticipating the rebuilding of the temple?
god s people1
God’s People
  • What does it mean that Jesus is the true Adam?
  • What does it mean that Jesus is the true Israel?
god s place1
God’s place
  • How is Jesus the true tabernacle? the true temple?
  • Consider Ezekiel 47:1-8
  • Read John 7:37-38, Rev 22:1-2
god s rule and blessing1
God’s rule and blessing
  • Jesus introduces the new covenant
    • What was the old covenant?
    • What was wrong with it?
  • Is the old covenant just set aside?
    • Matthew 5:17
    • Gal 3:13-14
    • Romans 8:4
    • 2 Cor 5:21
    • Heb 9:15
god s rule and blessing2
God’s rule and blessing
  • Jesus is the new king (son of David, son of God)
  • Jesus is the source of God’s blessing
  • Note how Jesus announced the kingdom
    • Luke 4:16-21
    • Matthew 11:1-10 (also Luke 7)
    • Note the cross references in the ESVSB
salvation by substitution
Salvation by Substitution
  • Could there have been a way other than the cross?
  • What would it say about the nature of God if sin were not punished?
the four gospels
The Four Gospels
  • Matthew: Jesus is the Christ of the OT Scriptures
  • Mark: Jesus is the Suffering Servant
  • Luke: Jesus is the Savior of the world
  • John: Jesus is the Son of God who gives eternal life
we live in the proclaimed kingdom
We live in the proclaimed kingdom
  • Why does the author call this chapter “The proclaimed kingdom”?
  • How is the proclaimed kingdom the “already” and the “not yet?”
  • What was the sign of the Spirit at Pentecost?
  • What specific curse did that reverse?
what is the work of the spirit
What is the work of the Spirit?
  • He brings new birth - John 3:3
  • He equips us to serve Christ - 1 Cor 12:7
  • He produces holiness - Rom 8:13
the kingdom of god
The kingdom of God
  • God’s people: “The new Israel is the church, all those who trust in Christ” (p. 131).
  • God’s place: God dwells in us by the Holy Spirit and also in the Church
  • God’s rule and blessing: the law is written on our hearts, and by the Spirit, we actually want to obey and can be obedient
our experience in the last days
Our experience in the last days
  • We live with a foot in each world
  • We long for holiness
  • We are frustrated with sin


















what is it about revelation
What is it about Revelation?
  • John uses figurative language
  • We want to know the future
  • Is there anything we can learn?
blessings and comfort
Blessings and comfort
  • “Blessed is the one who reads aloud the words of this prophecy, and blessed are those who hear, and who keep what is written in it, for the time is near.” (Revelation 1:3)
  • “At once I was in the Spirit, and behold, a throne stood in heaven, with one seated on the throne.” (Revelation 4:2)
  • Rome? New York? Baghdad? Tehran? Roxboro?
  • Why is Babylon describe as a prostitute?
  • “She represents non-Christian society organized without reference to God: ‘the world’”. (p. 143)
  • What parallels are there between our lives today and the exile of the Jews in Daniel’s day?
the beast and the false prophet
The Beast and the False Prophet
  • The beast: “represents worldly anti-Christian powers”
  • The false prophet: “worldly anti-Christian ideology”
  • What is the end of Babylon, the beast, and the false prophet?
brave new world
Brave new world?
  • The quest for Utopia
  • Did sin affect us spiritually, physically, or both?
  • Just as our bodies must be destroyed and recreated, so must all of creation.
heaven is communion with others
Heaven is communion with others
  • We will not be isolation, but in community.
  • Community will be “from every nation, tribe, people and language” (Rev. 7:4-9) -- the curse of Babel is undone!
  • Everyone whose name is written in the Lamb’s book of life will be there.
  • What is significant about the number 144,000?
heaven is communion with god
Heaven is communion with God
  • What was the purpose of the temple in the OT?
  • What is the temple in heaven?
  • What is the significance of the new city being described as a cube?
  • “I did not see a temple in the city, because the Lord God Almighty and the Lamb are its temple” (Rev 21:22).
heaven is
Heaven is...
  • ...God’s people
  • ...in God’s place
  • ...under God’s rule and blessing

“Surely I am coming soon.” Amen. Come, Lord Jesus!” (Rev 22:20)