Monday 25 August 2008

Preaching and the History of Redemption

The History of Salvation

This is a sermon outline preached recently but it is becoming so clear to me that it is vital to understand the unfolding of salvation history for preaching and exegesis to be faithful to the biblical revelation. Hopefully this will be a taster. A book by Clowney on Preaching and Biblical Theology is helpful for futher study.

This is the theme of the whole Bible from Genesis to Revelation and everything connects to this. This aids our knowledge of God, the glory of the coming of Christ and the accurate interpretation of the Bible.
A Tulip coming into flower
The red lava on Mount Etna (which is over 10,000 feet and 40 km cone)
Galatians 3:6, ¶ Even so Abraham BELIEVED GOD, AND IT WAS RECKONED TO HIM AS RIGHTEOUSNESS. 7. therefore, be sure that it is those who are of faith who are sons of Abraham.
8 And the Scripture, foreseeing that God would justify the Gentiles by faith, preached the gospel beforehand to Abraham, [saying], "ALL THE NATIONS SHALL BE BLESSED IN YOU."
9 So then those who are of faith are blessed with Abraham, the believer.

Background to Galatians and its troubles
The theme is Justification by grace through faith: this defended against the enemies of the Gospel.

1. Galatians 3: 7-9
· Verse 6 Believed God = believe the gospel and faith in his redeemer. How do we know this? John 8:56 "Your father Abraham rejoiced to see My day, and he saw [it] and was glad."
· This is quoted from Genesis 15: 6 and this faith was before circumcision and before the law.
· Verse 7: Who are the sons of Abraham? Those who have faith in Christ as Saviour, Lord and Redeemer.
· God…preached the gospel beforehand to Abraham. The gospel is the message of salvation for fallen, sinful man and Christ is the central theme. ‘All the nations shall be blessed in you’… the focus is not on Abraham but on God and his plan. Abraham, the patriarchs, the prophets in Israel to the coming of the Messiah = God’s crowning revelation of Himself. Then the gospel overflows into the nations where the Holy Spirit gathers in the elect from every tribe, tongue, nation and people. Revelation 7.
· Blessed and verse 8 those who are of faith is a remnant. Faithful, elect, the true church and it is by grace, through Faith in Jesus are the ones who are blessed.
What is blessed?
Ephesians 1: 3. In Christ we have all the blessings of God known to man though Christ alone, by faith alone, though grace alone.
· Adoption
· Justification
· Forgiveness of sins
· Redemption
· Regeneration
· Eternal Life
The New covenant is not conditional blessings based on our obedience but unconditional blessings based on our faith in Jesus Christ. The aim is the glory of God, not obedience.

2. The Big Picture of Salvation History

Adam and the Garden of Eden
Genesis 3:15 “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 him on the heel."
Noah and the Flood
Abraham: Genesis 12: 1-3 and all the patriarchs
Isaac, Jacob and Joseph
Moses and the Exodus
Joshua, the Judges to Samuel
The Davidic Kingdom
2 Samuel 7:12 "When your days are complete and you lie down with your fathers, I will raise up your descendant after you, who will come forth from you, and I will establish his kingdom.
13 "He shall build a house for My name, and I will establish the throne of his kingdom forever.
14 "I will be a father to him and he will be a son to Me; when he commits iniquity, I will correct him with the rod of men and the strokes of the sons of men,
15 but My lovingkindness shall not depart from him, as I took [it] away from Saul, whom I removed from before you.
16 "And your house and your kingdom shall endure before Me forever; your throne shall be established forever."'"
The rise and fall of Israel and Judah
Off to Babylon and Assyria
Back in the Land: Messianic Expectation
Malachi 3:1 ¶ "Behold, I am going to send My messenger, and he will clear 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.
Christ is the climax of God’s Plan
The Last days
The Triumph of the Lamb
Revelation: The theme of the book is ‘the victory of Christ and His church over Satan and all the enemies of the gospel’.
Rev. 11:15 And the seventh angel sounded; and there were great voices in heaven, saying, The kingdoms of this world are become the kingdoms of our Lord, and of his Christ; and he shall reign for ever and ever.
Revelation 12: 10 And I heard a loud voice in heaven, saying, "Now the salvation, and the power, and the kingdom of our God and the authority of His Christ have come, for the accuser of our brethren has been thrown down, who accuses them before our God day and night.
11 "And they overcame him because of the blood of the Lamb and because of the word of their testimony, and they did not love their life even to death.

3. New heavens and New Earth

What are blessings? Spiritual blessings involving the whole benefit of redemption.

Some areas of confusion
· Healing confusion and eternal life
· Confusion regarding getting more so-called blessings
· Freedom from legalism
· Conference in Manchester: ‘You can cancel out your blessings’
· Leader in Sheffield: if you do not work hard to fulfil your destiny God will take it off you and give it to someone else’.

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