May 28

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The title under which we write might seem like the “understatement of a lifetime!” Is there any debate that Jesus is the subject of the Bible? One writer said about the Bible: “Although the Bible is a great reference book, it is not like other books you may be familiar with. The Bible isn’t written like an encyclopedia, a dictionary or a textbook. It is composed of 66 shorter books written by dozens of people over about 1,500 years—yet they all have a unified message.” Knowing this, just how would we go about to answer our question: “What is the subject of the bible?” Did the writers give a list of subjects, or a table of contents? These would be questions generally asked, if we were looking at a “normal” book, but the Bible is not “normal,” in that it is unlike any other book ever written.
Why is this so? First, the writers of many of the books do not identify themselves. For instance, this article has a title and at the end will appear the name of the writer. It may be a matter of ego, as we desire everyone who looks at the article to know who wrote it! The writers of the Bible were more concerned that the reader understand the words being read were being written by inspiration of the Holy Spirit, than any reference to himself. Peter in fact wrote: “For the prophecy came not in old time by the will of man: but holy men of God spake as they were moved by the Holy Spirit” (2 Pet. 1:20). The word “prophecy” is of interest, it is the Greek “propheteia” and means: “a discourse emanating from divine inspiration” (among other things), whether it has the predictive element or not; but if any writing has reference to Jesus, it would by its very nature be predictive! Just how much time there is between the creation of the man and the first sins committed is unknown; nevertheless, Jesus becomes the subject of the Bible in chapter three, when God speaks to Satan: “And I will put enmity between thee and the woman, and between thy seed and her seed; it (he -FRW)shall bruise thy head, and thou shalt bruise his heel” (Gen. 3:15). This is known as the Protoevangelium of the Bible: the first pronouncement of Christ. With the words spoken by God to Satan: “it (he -FRW) shall bruise thy head, and thou shalt bruise his heel,” the subject of the Bible is announced! Thus, in the third chapter of the Bible the inspired writer Moses identifies the subject; he has started the “golden thread” which would run through the thirty-nine books of the Old Testament. Jesus said: “For had ye believed Moses, ye would have believed me: for he wrote of me” (John 3:46).
Jesus said after his resurrection: “These are the words which I spake unto you, while I was yet with you, that all things must be fulfilled, which were written in the law of Moses, and in the prophets, and in the psalms, concerning me” (Luke 24:44); thus, Jesus identifies the subject of the “law of Moses,” “the prophets,” and the “psalms,” which covers the whole Old Testament, and he said, they wrote “concerning me!” Then, he said: “Search the scriptures; for in them ye think ye have eternal life: and they are they which testify of me” (John 5:39). Peter also said, when writing about the Old Testament Prophets: “Of which salvation the prophets have enquired and searched diligently, who prophesied of the grace that should come unto you: Searching what, or what manner of time the Spirit of Christ which was in them did signify, when it testified beforehand the sufferings of Christ, and the glory that should follow” (1 Pet. 1:10-11). Clearly the Prophets wrote of “the sufferings of Christ,” and Moses is the first of these Prophets to so write! It should be noted in Peter’s words, that he ties salvation and Jesus (Christ) together; as he wrote: “of which salvation” and “the sufferings of Christ.” It is not too much to say, every reference of Christ is a reference to salvation!
You do remember, Jesus said: “For the Son of man is come to seek and to save that which was lost” (Luke 19:10); then, the name Jesus itself, as Matthew reveals means saviour: “And she shall bring forth a son, and thou shalt call his name JESUS: for he shall save his people from their sins” (Matt. 1:21). So, Jesus is the subject of the Bible and the name Jesus means salvation; therefore, one may just as truthfully say, salvation is the subject of the Bible.
Therefore, the Bible gives us everything we need to be saved! Is everyone going to be saved? If you answer no, then, what makes the difference between those who will be saved and those who will not be saved? Many folks answer there is nothing that we must do in order to be saved. For we are not saved by works! Have you not read: “Jesus answered and said unto them, This is the work of God, that ye believe on him whom he hath sent.” (John 6:29). Let’s be honest now, is “belief” a work? For sure, it is an act of obedience!

Frank R. Williams

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