Pulling It All Together
Tying up loose threads. Pulling it all together. Wrapping it up. These are all various expressions used to convey the idea of bringing together separate things into a nice tidy organized fashion. Or we could also talk about coming full circle. In that sense we are seeing something previously seen resurface. In this blog about the two great themes of Scripture (Covenant and Kingdom) we have been tracing those two threads and have seen them running parallel and intertwining all throughout Scripture. They were instituted at Creation. As Scripture progressed we have seen them unfold, develop, and deepen in meaning and revelation. We believe that Christ was the fulfillment of the Old Testament. As such, it is no surprise that we have seen both Covenant and Kingdom come together and be most fully revealed in the person of Jesus.
He lived in perfect covenant relationship with His Heavenly Father. In the life of Jesus we see what that looks like.
In John 14:8 Philip asks:“Lord, show us the Father and that will be enough for us.”
9 Jesus answered: “Don’t you know me, Philip, even after I have been among you such a long time? Anyone who has seen me has seen the Father.”
In Jesus we come to understand what being one with the Father means. It means we receive from Him all we need (provision, protection, direction etc) as we live in complete surrender and in complete dependence upon Him. Through our relationship with our Heavenly Father we derive our identity, meaning, and purpose. Not only that, but we receive calling.
Jesus breathed in His Father’s love and identity, and lived out His Father’s will. Jesus was a portal into the next world. Wherever Jesus went, we see the Kingdom of God breaking into the present. Out of that perfect Covenant relationship, Jesus understood that He was to represent the King of the Universe, and He was authorized to exercise His power.
A key passage that we relied on in our Sunday morning preaching when we looked at the work of Jesus on the cross was Colossians 2:13-15. It is worth reviewing here:
13 When you were dead in your sins and in the uncircumcision of your flesh, God made you alive with Christ. He forgave us all our sins, 14 having canceled the charge of our legal indebtedness, which stood against us and condemned us; he has taken it away, nailing it to the cross. 15 And having disarmed the powers and authorities, he made a public spectacle of them, triumphing over them by the cross.
After securing the New Covenant and triumphing over the Enemy, Jesus returns to the right hand of the Father in heaven. We might think, “well, Jesus was the climax, and so the rest of Scripture will be anti-climactic”. This is not the case however. From Acts to Revelation we will see that climax sustained on that same plain or continuum. Before he ascended, Jesus commissioned his disciples to carry on with the task that He had begun. But this would not be done in their own strength, wisdom, or power. Jesus sent the Holy Spirit to fill and empower them for the task at hand. It is because of that that we will see the apostles do the very same things that Jesus did. Hardly anti-climactic! All the strands came together in Jesus, and as we will see, they remained fused together permanently.