Christocentric | 1 Peter 1:10-12
Concerning this salvation, the prophets who prophesied about the grace that was to be yours searched and inquired carefully, inquiring what person or time the Spirit of Christ in them was indicating when he predicted the sufferings of Christ and the subsequent glories. It was revealed to them that they were serving not themselves but you, in the things that have now been announced to you through those who preached the good news to you by the Holy Spirit sent from heaven, things into which angels long to look. 1 Peter 1:10-12 | ESV
Christocentric. It means more than turning the Old Testament into a happy hunting ground for proof texts as we contort ancient prophesies and pictures into images of Christ. It takes us back, rather, to this whole business of our vantage point. If Christ is the Word through whom all things were made, if he is the one holding all things together by his very nature as that Word, then his is the thread that runs through all of existence, through all of history, and through all of this history. That is the vantage point of New Testament witness. True, the New Testament book of Hebrews directly gives us this image of the Old and New Testaments with the Old aging, obsolete, and ready to vanish away – but I would contend the reference is to the former system of temple ritual and sacrifice, not to the rich community library we know as the Old Testament. The more holistic, healthy, and biblical view is that these writings flow into what we know as the New Testament community library, the one completing the other, the old unfolded in the new, the new enfolded in the old. You might call it a symbiotic relationship. They are meant to be taken together, the one informing, amplifying, clarifying the other. Peter goes so far as to say that the Spirit in evidence moving in these Old Testament pages is no less than the Spirit of Christ, that the Old Testament prophets, writers, and compilers did their work ultimately for us, their words directly speaking to us. And if we were having a hard time figuring that out, Peter would tell us to take a number. The angels are wondering what’s up with it too.
Where is it easiest for you to see Christ in the Old Testament? Where is it most challenging?
Spirit of Christ, help me to see your movements, to see the thread of divine grace and love in this, often darker, tapestry of the Old Testament. Help my eyes adjust to frequencies of mercy in its movements. Through Jesus.
For all of this week’s resources for this new series on Spiritual Disciplines including this week’s DG video, check out the Vineyard website.