On Saturday we hosted Dr. Dan Hawk for a leadership seminar on the Old Testament. He had the lovely challenge of unpacking a foundation for the Hebrew Scriptures in about an hour and a half. He did fantastic. Here are just a couple of nuggets that I took away from the talk.
God's ultimate goal since the fall in Genesis 3 (and the continued rebellion since) is restoration...Shalom is the ultimate end and shalom is almost untranslatable into an English context. Dr. Hawk's attempt at defining it: "Everything as it was created to be."
The Western Christian tradition ends the Hebrew Bible with Malachi...who leaves the tension of one named messiah that is yet to come. The Jewish scriptures ends with 2 Chronicles with the goal to evoke remembrance from the Israelites that their God is bringing them out of Babylon and into the Promised Land.
We understand Jesus as fully Divine and fully human. We would do well to understand the Bible in the same way. It is fully Divine in that it is God inspired. It is fully human in that humans wrote the text with their own aims toward a specific audience.
The Hebrew Bible is not first and foremost about LAW...but about RELATIONSHIP. The Law was given to enhance relationship.
Man was not given dominion over creation...that's poorly translated...Humanity was given management and stewardship over creation.
It was a rich day. And I love the Bible. If you are looking to start an in depth study of the OT, join us in January for our lifeWorth Groups as we begin a study of Genesis!