What IS the Big Deal With the Bible?

When I began getting intentional with Bible study, I struggled to connect the dots with how the big picture of scripture fits together. I could definitely see God’s hand in each of the stories but struggled to find a common link between most of them. The big revelation came from an unlikely source: my daughter’s children’s bible!

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On most nights, I handle the bed-time routine with our five year old little girl. Early on I would make up stories but there was one problem: I’m terrible with fiction. You can imagine our (my daughter’s) gratitude when our friends gave her a copy of The Jesus Storybook Bible by Sally Lloyd-Jones for Christmas one year. As I began using this resource at bed time, I quickly learned it offered more than just bible stories…it pointed us to the BIG deal of God’s Word.

There’s an old joke that, if you don’t know the answer to a question asked in Sunday School, just answer “Jesus” and you can’t lose. In reality, Jesus IS the big deal of the Bible. Every story told there is anticipating, describing or reflecting on His perfect work here on Earth or His second coming. This is even true of the Old Testament!

Examples of Christ Foreshadowed in the Old Testament

  • In Exodus, the Israelites wandered in the wilderness for 40 years before entering the promised land; Jesus sojourned in the desert for 40 days just before beginning his ministry.
  • The story of The Passover in Exodus details how each household who placed the blood of an unblemished lamb on the doorpost of their home would be “passed over” by the wrath of God that would otherwise allow the life of the firstborn sons to be taken. Thousands of years later, the blood of Jesus, the unblemished Lamb of God would be spilled for the salvation of all of God’s children.
  • In 1 Samuel and 2nd Samuel, you see God anoint a King (David) for His people who, in Chapter 7 of 2 Samuel receives God’s promise of an eternal dynasty for for his family. Jesus would ultimately be born of David’s lineage and be anointed by God as the eternal King of His people.

    See! When I learned to read the Word in light of Christ, it stopped being a collection of stories and became one beautiful work woven together by the incredible and sacrificial work of Jesus. A work that saved His people (us!) and established His Kingdom for eternity!

    Where To Start

    It’ll be difficult to see Christ in the scripture until you first become familiar with who He is and what He did. If you’re new to this whole Bible thing, no worries! I recommend these first steps:

    1. Read the Gospels

    Matthew, Mark, Luke and John are called “the gospels” and are the beginning of the New Testament (I like to start with John which is actually the last of the four…but that’s just me). Understand that these four books tell the same story from four different perspectives. Some include things that others don’t. All four are valuable in understanding who Jesus is. I plan to blog soon about how these four books fit together.

    2. Read the Book of Romans

    If there were a “cliff notes” version of the story of Salvation, this would be it. Don’t use that last sentence as an excuse to skip the gospels and jump straight to Romans. Seriously…the gospels are critical but, Paul’s letter to the church in Rome is AH-MAZ-ING!

    3. Begin to Branch Out

    If you want to dip your toe into the waters of the Old Testament, Psalms is popular (and beautiful…and long…). If you want to continue on in the New Testament, the book of Acts will tell you all about the beginnings of what we now know as the church.

    The evidence of Christ throughout scripture is there. Now it’s up to you to read it! Read and pray through each chapter with holy anticipation that Christ will be revealed to you. You’ll be amazed at the result!

    Question: What passages of the Bible are you reading through now? Where have you discovered Christ in your reading where you least expected Him? You can leave a comment below.

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