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SUNDAY 10 DECEMBER 2017
The Old Testament is full of people - real people; whose lives are messy, their families dysfunctional and their obedience not always full or immediate, yet God used them. Our study of their lives is to bring perspective, hope and instruction to ours - to recognise that at times we are tempted to sanitise or selectively interact with their stories and in that way make them heroes. The reality is that their stories are powerful because they are human like us and face the same temptations and frailty that we do - yet God used them.
This talk is called kia whakatomuri te haere whakamua. It means that we walk backwards into our future with our eyes fixed on the past.
As we approach Christmas, it is not only important to tell the story of Jesus’s birth, but its also important to understand the story and context that Jesus was being born into.
Being able to hold Jesus’s birth and everything that Jesus says and does, with the narrative of the old testament in the back of our minds, helps us to remember that Jesus was Jewish and God has always had a dream for our world.
As last talk in our series about the old testament James summarises the entire Old testament to help us all to land Jesus’s birth in the ancient near east in the first century with 4000 years worth of stories, histories, proverbs, poems and prophecies about the relationship between God his people and his creation of which we are a central part.
There are tonnes of themes that run from the start to the end of the bible, temple, trinity, sin, law, salvation, kingdom, holiness, justice, the image of God and thats just to name a few... but in order to summarise the Old Testament, James picks up on a theme that has captured my imagination over the past 6 months which is The Day of the Lord.