Our Current Study is "God's Big Picture" by Vaughn Roberts. These posts will serve as a summary & supplement to our current bible study.
The Overarching Theme of the Bible is the Kingdom of God
- The Kingdom of God: God’s people in God’s place under God’s rule & blessing.
- This is life at it’s fullest & best.
- Living under God’s rule means enjoying God’s blessing. This is what we see in the Garden of Eden before the fall.
- God promises to make things right again & reestablish his kingdom on earth.
- The Bible tells the story of the fulfillment of this promise: partially in Israel’s history in the OT and perfectly fulfilled in Jesus.
- The Bible is God’s plan of salvation: His promise to restore his kingdom & fulfilling that promise through his Son Jesus.
- The pattern of the kingdom: Garden of Eden shows the world as it was designed to be. God’s people—Adam & Eve—living in God’s place—the garden, under God’s rule, enjoying God’s blessing, as they submit to God’s word.
- The perished kingdom: Because of sin they are no longer God’s people, no longer in God’s place, no longer living under God’s rule, rather they are under God’s judgment not enjoying God’s blessings.
- The promised kingdom: God calls Abraham & makes unconditional promises to him reestablishing his kingdom through Abraham & his descendants. They will be his people, living in his land, & enjoying his blessings—through them all peoples of the world will be blessed. This is the gospel.
- The partial kingdom: Through the exodus from Egypt, God makes Abraham’s descendants his very own people so that they might live under his rule (God’s word) & enjoy God’s blessings. This blessing is marked chiefly by God’s presence with his people in the tabernacle. The high point in Israel’s history is under David & Solomon’s reign where they were God’s people in God’s place—land of Canaan, living under God’s rule, & enjoying God’s blessing.
- The prophesied kingdom: after the death of Solomon civil war broke out & the Kingdom of Israel was split into the Northern & Southern Kingdom. Ultimately the northern kingdom was destroyed by the Assyrians and the Southern Kingdom was conquered and it’s people taken to captivity in Babylon. God spoke through the prophets and pointed to a future when God would act decisively through his King—the Messiah and fulfill all of his promises. The OT ends here with God’s people waiting for God’s King to introduce his kingdom.
- The present kingdom: 400 yrs passed before Jesus, God’s Son began his ministry with these words: Mark 1:15 “The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand; repent and believe in the gospel.” God’s king had come to establish God’s kingdom.
- The proclaimed kingdom: By his death & resurrection, Jesus did all that was necessary to put everything right again & restore God’s kingdom. The delay in the consummation of the kingdom is meant to enable more people to hear the good news of Jesus and live under God’s restored rule through His Son.
- The perfected kingdom: Jesus will return and his enemies will be separated from his presence in hell but his people will join him in a perfect new creation. This is the restored kingdom: God’s people—believers from all nations, in God’s place—the new creation (new heaven & new earth), living under God’s rule & enjoying God’s blessing.
For more details see notes.