Summary: Preaching Christ

The whole Bible is about Jesus. When we preach the Bible, therefore, our first movement from any preaching text must always be toward Christ. When we skip this crucial step, applying passages directly to ourselves without first applying them to Jesus, then we have usurped the centre of Scripture, which belongs uniquely to Jesus. And, it is no small error to put ourselves in the place of Christ.

Each section of the Bible presents its own challenges in this regard. The road to Jesus is slightly different depending on which section of the Bible the preaching text is from. What remains important regardless of preaching text, however, is that our application always begins with Jesus, not with ourselves.

In the Old Testament we can apply the preaching text to Jesus by charting redemptive-historical progression through history and revelation, identifying prophesies of promise and fulfillment, describing typological pictures of Christ, highlighting analogies between God and Israel with Jesus and the Church, tracing longitudinal themes through the whole of Salvation History, contrasting the Old Covenant from the New Covenant, and exploring New Testament references to the Old Testament. In the Gospels we must ensure that we are constantly illuminating the life, ministry, death, and resurrection of Jesus as our hope and our example. The book of Acts reminds us that Jesus is still very much present by the Holy Spirit in the activity of the Church. Both orthodoxy and orthopraxy as found in the epistles must be firmly built on the foundation of Christ. And finally, Revelation is a fearfully awesome unveiling of the risen and glorified Jesus Christ, both in this age and the age to come.

Does this mean that the Bible is to have no impact on us? Absolutely not! There is no book that will impact us greater than the Bible. Just because the Bible is not about us does not mean that it is not for us. The Bible is for us and it makes an eternal impact on our lives.

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