This Mystery

reflections on theology and life

Tag: Biblical Theology

His glory is the center

I’ll say it up front. I love Bib­li­cal The­ol­ogy. The under­stand­ing that Scrip­ture has a com­plete, dis­cernible and con­tin­u­ous story line is essen­tial to under­stand­ing God’s work to restore cre­ation and redeem a peo­ple for himself.

One recent BT book I enjoyed read­ing and con­tinue to ref­er­ence is James Hamilton’s God’s Glory in Sal­va­tion through Judg­ment: a Bib­li­cal Theology.

This snip­pet sum­ma­rizes the preser­va­tion of a rem­nant through their return from exile — a return that leaves them under­stand­ing that some­thing, Some­one, else is yet to come.

The story line of the prophets is straight­for­ward. The peo­ple of Israel enter the land promised them by God. In doing so, they are like a new Adam in a new Eden. Their task is to rule over the earth and sub­due it, but they fare no bet­ter than Adam did. The ini­tial con­quest under Joshua is sub­verted by the Canaaniza­tion of Israel in Judges, and then the nation rejects Yah­weh for a king like all the other nations. Hav­ing removed Saul, Yah­weh mer­ci­fully raises up David and promises that his seed will rule. Solomon builds the tem­ple, but then he wor­ships the gods of his many wives. The nation is rent aus­nder. Israel falls to Assyria, Judah to Babylon.

Along the way, Isa­iah, Jere­miah, Ezekiel, and the Twelve call the kings, priests and peo­ple to repen­tance. They also proph­esy that Yah­weh will redeem his peo­ple after the exile. Just as he brought his peo­ple out of Egypt, he will bring them back from all the lands in which he scat­tered them. Just as he shook heaven and earth at Sinai, he will once again shake heav­ens and earth, and once again enter into a covenant with Israel, and the peo­ple will know Yah­weh. … Through the judg­ment of exile, Yah­weh will purge his peo­ple, bring them to final sal­va­tion and his glory will be the cen­ter­piece of praise, as it is the cen­ter of bib­li­cal theology.

Hamil­ton, James M. God’s Glory in Sal­va­tion through Judg­ment: a Bib­li­cal The­ol­ogy. Wheaton, IL: Cross­way, 2010. Print. p. 267

First Item on my 2011 Christmas list

Thomas Schreiner calls Gre­gory K. Beale’s forth­com­ing book,  A New Tes­ta­ment Bib­li­cal The­ol­ogy: The Unfold­ing of the Old Tes­ta­ment in the New his “mag­num opus.”

Beale, author of two favorites of mine, We Become What We Wor­ship: A Bib­li­cal The­ol­ogy of Idol­a­try and The Tem­ple and the Church’s Mis­sion: A Bib­li­cal The­ol­ogy of the Dwelling Place of God – as well as co-editor with D. A. Car­son of Com­men­tary on the New Tes­ta­ment Use of the Old Tes­ta­ment — has this new work hit­ting on Decem­ber 1.

In his endorse­ment, Schreiner writes, “Cer­tainly Beale has writ­ten his mag­num opus, in which he deftly inte­grates the Scrip­tures via the new cre­ation theme. The use of the Old Tes­ta­ment in the New Tes­ta­ment forms the back­bone of this work so that read­ers grasp how the sto­ry­line of Scrip­ture coheres. We stand in debt to the author for his detailed and pro­found unfold­ing of New Tes­ta­ment theology.”

Dou­glas Moo’s endorse­ment: “The canon­i­cal scope and focus on the bib­li­cal story line give Beale’s New Tes­ta­ment Bib­li­cal The­ol­ogy a unique place among the many New Tes­ta­ment the­olo­gies now avail­able. The book is vin­tage Beale, cre­atively mak­ing con­nec­tions between Old Tes­ta­ment and New Tes­ta­ment and pur­su­ing a def­i­nite vision of how the Bible hangs together.”

I can’t wait!


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