Jesus Through the Scriptures

 

Palm Sunday commemorates Jesus’ triumphal entry into Jerusalem. However, N.T. Wright’s commentary on Psalm 31 focuses more on Jesus Christ’s presence as comprehensive of the whole Bible – not merely the 4 Gospels. A few years ago, Bill led the Chapel on an Emmaus Walk where we journeyed briefly over the whole of Scripture – seeking Christ in the oddities and oft-forgot locations. This link to Tim Keller’s “True and Better” explanation of Jesus through the Old Testament always reminds me of Jesus’ transcendence of our world in a micro level; yet, for me, learning this truth personally, on a small scale proved instrumental in my life.

When I first began as the Pastoral Intern, I set about performing the normal duties as well as I could. They came easily to me, as most were reliant on charisma and relationships. I have always been extroverted and skilled at building relationships or entertaining groups of people. I have never been alone, I surround myself with people that I care about and fill my time with actions and conversations. (I wrote “intelligent conversations” first but then I remembered my roommates and I spent a couple of hours last week debating which characters from The Office we most emulated) A few months into my internship, I was tasked with doing some sermon research on the women in Jesus’ genealogy as depicted in the Gospel of Matthew. Some of you may recall that the genealogies in Luke and Matthew are different; one of the unique aspects of the Gospel of Matthew is the inclusion of 4 women in the famous “Begats” section. Well after I found Andrew Peterson’s “Matthew Begats” video and gleaned all the information I could from people around the Church, it was clearly time for me to do some solitary research.

I shut my door and combed through Genesis 38 trying to understand why Tamar was so important to the narrative of Christ. At 7:00, I emerged ready for lunch. I had lost track of time because – for the first time – I had stumbled across Jesus in a story that I had never heard explained to me. I felt like I had solved a puzzle or gotten God’s inside joke all on my own. The elation so clouded my daily routine that for the first time, I enjoyed the solitude. Jesus showing up in Genesis and the Psalms is important for many reasons. It means there was a plan from the onset of creation, that we are not a Plan B. It means that the same Jesus who paid for our sins was there at the Creation of the World. It means that when Gideon was threshing wheat in the Winepress, our lives were accounted for. It means that we can see Boaz as a primitive example of Christ being our very own Kinsman-Redeemer. All of these are much more important than what happened to me while reading Genesis 38. It’s a small thing to credit God’s Omnipresence but He also gave me my first passion that doesn’t involve other people. I look forward to a life of gleaning Christ from the Scriptures.

Tim Latham

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