Theology Thursday: The Larger Story Introduction

This post is part of the series Grand Story of Scripture

Other posts in this series:

  1. Theology Thursday: The Larger Story Introduction (Current)
  2. Theology Thursday: The Larger Story of Scripture – Creation
  3. Theology Thursday: The Larger Story of Scripture- The Fall

This past Sunday our church studied the old story of Isaac.  As he and his wife were having children, God revealed to them that their little story was part of a bigger story. As Christians we sometimes forget that our little story is lived out within the grand story of God. There are many ways to look at the Bible (testaments, books, chapters, sections, verses), but my favorite way to look at the bible is to see what is called the “Grand Story of Scripture.” This helps us see all the little stories within the one Grand Story.  In the Grand Story of Scripture there are 4 major plot points: Creation, Fall, Redemption, and Restoration.  Over the next 4 weeks, we will look a little deeper into each plot point, but for now, here is an overview to get us started.

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Art by Jeff Seevers

Creation

Creation takes place in Genesis 1-2. This is where the eternal God creates the heavens and the earth, and mankind in his image and his likeness. Once he was done creating, he looked out at all he created and he saw that it was good. Mankind was created to live in the presence of God, enjoying him and building a God-glorifying culture of flourishing. There was only one rule in the Garden of Eden and that was to trust God by not eating from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. They were given a choice: to love, obey, and worship the creator or to love, obey, and worship the creation through disobeying God.

Fall

Unfortunately Adam and Eve are only in the garden for a limited time before they fall into sin. In Genesis chapter 3 they disobey God’s command and willfully eat of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil.  This sin shatters everything, including their relationship with God, each other, their world, and even their understanding of their own identity.  Physical and spiritual death are now a reality. Mankind is cast out of the Garden of Eden and are no longer able to physically walk with God.  It’s bad news.

Redemption

The third part of the Grand Story of Scripture is Redemption. This is God bringing good news where we caused bad news.  Redemption is accomplished through the work of Jesus, the eternal God who created everything, and who was sinned against by mankind.  He becomes a man and lives a sinless life. Then he dies a violent death on a cross and resurrects three days later in accordance with the scriptures (1 Corinthians 15:1-3) and God’s plan. Jesus was punished in our place for the sins that had separated mankind from God. Ephesians 1:7 tells us, “In him (JESUS) we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of our trespasses, according to the riches of his grace.”  It’s good news!

Restoration

The final part of the Grand Story of Scripture is Restoration. Author Trevin Wax says, “God has promised to renew the whole world, and the Bible gives us a peak into this glorious future. The restoration of all things will take place in two ways. Christ will return to judge sin and evil, and He will usher in righteousness and peace. God will purge this world of evil once and for all.” Everything that we have broken gets put back into place. God restores things to their former glory. We will then be able to physically see and walk with God forever!

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