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Genesis and the Gospel

May 7, 2013

When thinking about the Old Testament its common for people to treat the Old Testament like an introduction to the main content of the Bible, which is found in the New Testament. The resulting attitude looks something like this: If you really want to get to know our Triune God and his character, if you really want to know the gospel, if you really want to understand the nature of the church then you have to go the New Testament. The Old Testament is fine so far as it goes, but at it best it’s only anticipatory, the pure light of God’s mercy and grace found in Jesus Christ being visible only in shadowy glimmers.

One of the things I hope that our series through Genesis will help you see is that this isn’t really the best way to think about or receive the Old Testament. Even in Genesis 1 we already saw that our Triune God was clearly present: The Father and the Holy Spirit are explicitly mentioned and differentiated in the first 2 verses! Moreover, we saw that our God’s creative act took something that was formless and void, dark and chaotic, and made it into something good (very good!), holy, and at a rest with him. Is there a better picture for what the gospel does for us then this? Further, since it was the word of the Father which brought this dead world to life before God is it any wonder, then, that John identified that word with Jesus Christ? Who is it, after all, that takes us in our dark and dead state and makes us alive to God in holiness, giving us rest with him? So Genesis has all three persons of the Trinity present. And it revealsĀ  the character of our Triune God: He’s a God who in mercy makes dead things holy and alive and at rest with him out of love.

Genesis 1 isn’t unique in the way it presents our God to us or his character or his gospel. Rather, as the prologue to the entire Bible it calls us to receive the Bible as a testament to this God who acts this way in this world. Therefore we ought to expect to meet this God in every passage. And it’s my hope that this series in Genesis will do just that. So pray that each Sunday you would have your Triune God presented to you clearly from each passage of Scripture. And pray that you would be enabled by his Holy Spirit to receive that God and his gospel by faith: the same God and the same gospel that is announced in both testaments of the Bible.

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