Preaching the OT

Today was the first day of my doctoral seminar on preaching the Old Testament (or as Kaiser says, the “older” testament). I am too exhausted to give a long post but I promise to give more over the next few days. Dr. Barrick was exceptional in his lectures on “The Place of the OT Scriptures in Worship” and “The Problem of the Old Testament.” Speaking of Barrick, you must see his sermon resource page which is like having a Barrick commentary on many OT passages. He eventually plans to have all 150 Psalms posted (he has notes through Psalm 84 at this point). If you look at the bottom of the resource page you can see his lectures from today on the OT. . . . a goldmine!

While on the subject of preaching the OT, here is a relevant excerpt from Sidney Greidanus:

In spite of . . .major hurdles, there are many reasons why pastors must preach from the Old Testament: (1) the Old Testament is part of the Christian canon, (2) it discloses the history of redemption leading to Christ (3) it proclaims truths not found in the New Testament, (4) it helps us understand the New Testament, (5) it prevents misunderstanding the New Testament, and (6) it provides a fuller understanding of Christ (Sidney Greidanus, Preaching Christ from the Old Testament, 25).

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9 responses to this post.

  1. Thanks for this resource!

    Jason

  2. Sounds like good stuff! Thanks for sharing it. I hope you continue to have a great time in California. That sounds like a great program.

  3. Posted by John Hill on January 5, 2007 at 7:40 am

    Speaking of the Old Testament, does it ever give a reason for God creating? I mean besides the ‘for his glory’ kind of answer. I’ve about given up on God, because everytime I read the Bible, I come away more bitter towards him. Of all the things he might be able to say to me on judegement day, the one thing he can’t say is, “well kid, you knew what you were getting into when you decided to be born”.
    And that’s the main point of contention I have. I was brought into this crummy world through no fault of my own, but am told I will be judeged (with eternal consequence) on how I react to it.
    I know that Christ died for our sins, but since he, as part of the trinty, is responsible for my being here, why should I be thankful? That’s like pushing someone into a pit, then expecting them to be thankful when you offer to help them back out.
    All that I read in the Bible falls flat.
    Like where was satan during all the time that Adam was alone tending the garden and giving names to the animals. It looks as though he knew the woman would be created, and was waiting to enter on cue.
    If the world was ‘very good’ why did God then create the garden of Eden? Is that not paradice within paradice? He placed man in an enclosed area with the one thing ( tree of knowledge of good and evil) that would cause his fall.
    Why did God (not Adam) say ‘it’s not good that man should be alone’? Adam had perfect communion with God. Adam did not ‘know Eve’ until after the fall, so she was not created to be a ‘mate’ to Adam. After all Jesus said that in Heaven you do not marry. And since he came to restore us back to where Adam fell from, sex would not have been part of the pre-fallen world.
    It seems as though Eve was created, because as a rule, two are more likely to get into mischief than one. And since God intended for man to fall, he made the ‘helper’ female for pro-creation purposes.
    Which bring me to another problem. How long is this all suppose to go on? How many generations does there have to be? The world is more pain than joy, so why do countless generations have suffer God’s actions in creating?
    And what’s worse, is that once you exist, it’s forever! Heaven or Hell, you are eternal. Is that just? To have no choice in your coming into existence to begin with, but then told you will exist forever.
    I did’nt ask to be born, nor given the option, would I have chosen to. To exist is punishment enough for me to draw the conclusion that God is neither just nor good.
    Can I not say to God, ‘Let me be. I’m sure heaven is great, but no thanks. Just render me to oblivon. Just let me cease to be’.

  4. John,

    Thank you for the candid nature of your comments. You raise many good questions, ones which place you in good company (Psalms, Job, Paul). The message of the OT is one of hope not hopelessness. Jesus Christ is the expected Messiah anticipated in the OT and revealed in the NT. Isaiah anticipated that this Messiah would take the weight of our guilt, our sin and our hopelessness (cf. Is. 53). He is the Holy One of Israel (Is. 54:5; Jhn. 6:68). The conclusion of the matter is that there is no injustice with God (Rom. 9:14) and “I know that You (the Lord) can do all things and no purpose of yours can be thwarted” (Job 42:2).

    We all, at one time or another, have found ourselves in the midst of unbelief as you have articulated here. All of us have gone astray and each one of us has turned to his wicked ways (Isa 53:6). The only solution is to repent of our unbelief (cf. Job 42:6; Psalms 32 & 51; Acts 2:38; 3:19) and believe by faith what God says about Himself (not what we say about Him). In an amazing act of grace He has shown Himself to us (John 1:14, 18) and He rescues those who trust in Him (Colossians 1:13-20).

    John, he will rescue you if you cry out to him and will make you alive in Christ (Eph. 2:4-10). Only then will you “see” as He created you to see (1 Cor. 2:14). Jesus has never once promised us answers to all of our questions, he never promised health or prosperity but he promises eternal life with Him and even abundant life now which comes through persevering confidence in what He has promised. I would ask you to do one thing: let God speak for himself and be careful not to draw conlusions about His character and wisdom from the perspective of unbelief or personal trial. Cast your cares upon Jesus for He cares for you.

    This is probably not the best forum or place for me to answer you in detail since I would prefer to speak to you in person. Please feel free to contact me through the email listed at the top of this page. I will be glad to speak to you about all of these things and help you in any way I can. I am praying for you and stand ready to serve you in any way the Lord will allow.

    Blessings,
    Paul Lamey

  5. Posted by John Hill on January 6, 2007 at 7:17 am

    Mr. Lamey,
    Thanks for taking the time to comment.
    I’ll keep trying.

  6. […] here: In spite of . . .major hurdles, there are many reasons why pastors must preach from the Old […]

  7. Not a word since the 4th? Dr. Barrick must have wore you boys slap out.

  8. Jonathan,

    It has been relentless but in a good way. You’ll be glad to know that I did make it to the Mac store in Pasadena and the Archives!

    I hope to post some more later.

    PSL

  9. Ah, the three tiers of heaven on earth: Mac store, Archives, and TMS/GCC.

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