From the Westminster Confession of Faith, Chapter VII, Sections V & VI:
Biblical Theology approaches the Bible as an organic drama of God’s unfolding revelation through history. In distinction from doctrinal or systematic theology, biblical theology follows the progressively unfolding revelation of God’s words and deeds through history. This linear aspect of revelation unites each revelatory event and proclamation both retrospectively and prospectively. Geerhardus Vos described the organic continuation of revelation in history as a flower expanding from bud to blossom. The blossom is retrospectively united to the bud; the bud is prospectively united to the blossom. One of the tasks/privileges of the interpreter of Scripture is to draw out these organic prospective and retrospective relationships. At the center of this organic unity is the person and work of our Savior, Jesus Christ. Even as our Risen Lord related all of Scripture retrospectively and prospectively to himself (Luke 24:27), so Reformed biblical theology is preeminently Christocentric.
From The Christ of the Covenants, O. Palmer Robertson, pg. 41.
The New Covenant, promised by Israel’s prophets, does not appear as a distinctive covenantal unit unrelated to God’s previous administrations. Instead, the New Covenant as promised to Israel represents the consummate fulfillment of the earlier covenants. This organic relation of the New Covenant to the covenants of Abraham, Moses, and David finds explicit development both in the Old Testament prophecies concerning the covenant and in the New Testament realizations of this consummating covenant. From either perspective, the New Covenant may be understood in no other way than as a realization of the prophetic projections found in the Abrahamic, Mosaic, and Davidic covenants.
Humans weren’t designed to know everything that’s happening in the world all the time: the despair, the suffering, the trials, the overwhelming injustices and the immensity of the problems in our modern industrialized, global society, can easily topple us emotionally and even spiritually. The Internet and its various information-pushing innovations over time, have all made it possible to know the massive tragedies in other countries, in real-time, in such a way that it can almost feel like the world is ending. All the time. Man can’t bear the weight of such knowledge.
Living between the first and second advents of Christ, caught between the already and the not yet, as His people, ours is an assured hope, wrapped up and summarized in the words of Christ: “It is finished.” And yet it’s a hope that contains an honest recognition of the present realities of the corrosion and decay ushered into the world by a single act of defiance against the rights of our Creator, transmitted and carried down through successive generations, even us, even me. It recognizes that the “not yet” aspect of our daily lives is all too real.
What MTV used to be like in 1995 at 2AM, after a night of… well, partying (in my former, rebellious days of course). The film, entitled Westworld, is slightly disturbing war footage with Aphex Twin and Stakker music overlaid. As a piece of video/music art of sorts, without words, it captures the darkness of 20th century warfare during the Cold War in Asia:
“I do know that waiting on God requires the willingness to bear uncertainty, to carry within oneself the unanswered question, lifting the heart to God about it whenever it intrudes upon one’s thoughts. Its easy to talk oneself into a decision that has no permanence – easier sometimes than to wait patiently.” – Elisabeth Elliot
It is in times of distress and suffering that the deep questions come to mind concerning suffering and the goodness of God. Is He really for me? What are His purposes in this? Why is this happening? If He’s all-powerful, why does He fail to act? How can something so horrible happen to [fill in the blank]?
Christ is Isaac, the beloved Son of the Father who was offered as a sacrifice, but nevertheless did not succumb to the power of death. He is Jacob the watchful shepherd, who has such great care for the sheep which He guards.