By: Danny Chua
What Do You Mean When You Talk about Christ in the Old Testament?
I needed a lay-friendly list of ways that the Old Testament points to and prepares us for Christ. Here’s the list I came up with, and I welcome your suggestions for refining and improving upon it:
- A problem that only Christ can solve (the curse, our inability to keep the law, ouralienation from God)
- A promise only Christ can fulfill (blessing, presence of God with us)
- A need that only Christ can meet (salvation from judgment, life beyond death)
- A pattern or theme that only comes to resolution in Christ (kingdom, rest)
- A story that only comes to its conclusion through Christ (the people of God, creation/fall/redemption/consummation)
- A person who prefigures an aspect of who Christ will be or what he will do by analogy and/or contrast (Joseph, Moses, David)
- An event or symbol that pictures an aspect of who Christ will be or what he will do (ark, exodus, sacrifices)
- A revelation of the pre-incarnate Christ (wrestling with Jacob, commander of the Lord’s army)
The reality is that we need biblical theology not only preached from the pulpit on Sundays, but also taught and embraced in the men’s and women’s Bible studies that meet throughout the week. So we have to learn not only how to present Christ from all the Scriptures, but also how to help our listeners to develop an instinct for seeing Christ throughout the whole of the Bible as they read and study on their own.