The Old Testament archives the beginning of God’s work to redeem God’s people. From the very beginning, God had a plan that no enmity or enemy could stop.
Narrative of the Bible
- The Bible is not a disconnected series of self-help tales.
- God’s Word outlines God’s work to redeem God’s people.
- To summarize the Bible’s narrative, remember these four words: creation, corruption, crucifixion, and commission.
- All things were made by God and for God (Gen. 1:1; Col. 1:16).
- In God’s good design, He created a place for His people to enjoy His presence.
- Sin entered the world when, instead of wanting to be like God, Mankind wanted to be God (Gen. 3:5).
- The Fall happened because Mankind wanted to take God’s place but concluded with a promise that God would take Mankind’s place (Gen. 3:15, 21).
- As sin reached a chaotic level, God’s wrath reversed the environments and covered the inhabitants.
- God’s wrath came upon every person or a vessel meant to protect those marked by faith.
- With nations scattered, God blessed Abraham so that someone from his family would bless and reunite all peoples.
- God took unrighteous Abraham and credited him righteous on the basis of his faith – not his works.
- The only son was willing to be sacrificed in obedience to his father.
- Joseph accepted his role to suffer unfairly for the redemption of those undeserving.
- God brought the nation of Israel and placed them in the greatest nation on earth to reveal Himself to them.
- Through the plagues, God humiliated every god the Egyptians revered.
- The sacrificial lamb took God’s wrath for the people so they could finally be free.
- God did not provide commandments in order to be redeemed but because they were redeemed.
- The Law showed that no one could keep it perfectly, yet it provided the ideal order the world needed desperately.
- The people’s disobedience kept them wandering for years, unable to reach the Promised Land.
- No matter how consistent their rebellion, God maintained His presence on the sacrifice of substitutes.
1 Samuel 8:1-9
- God led His people to His place to enjoy His presence.
- The awe of blessings got replaced by the danger of entitlement.
- God’s people got stuck in a cycle of sin with a constant need for a redeemer.
- When everyone does what is right in their own eyes, a culture deteriorates thoroughly.
- Discontent with the kingship of God, the people preferred to be like neighboring nations and follow flawed kings.
- Whatever the people relied on other than God, He would use that exact thing to humble them.
- No matter how impressive the feats, every king also portrayed disappointing frailties.
- God promised that one from David’s lineage would become king and reign forever.
- The nation descended into chaos as God’s people tweaked religious devotion to satisfy personal desires.
- The remaining prophets warned God’s people to return to God’s ways or experience God’s punishment.
- God allowed pagan nations to defeat His own because, even if His enemies were worse, God’s people knew better.
- The exile forced God’s people to learn how to follow Him in a land that did not.
- After a lifetime in exile, a remnant returns to rebuild what sin had broken.
- While the people wondered if God had abandoned them, prophets urged them to wait for the help on His way.
Travis Agnew serves as the Lead Pastor of Rocky Creek Church in Greenville, SC. His most recent book is Just (About) Married.