Blog Posts on Redemptive History

Three Points on Edwards's History of Redemption

Joe Rigney

Historical counterfactuals fascinate me. What if the British had won the Revolutionary War? What if Constantine had lost the Battle of Milan? What if Hitler had never been born?

As an amateur scholar of Jonathan Edwards, one of the most intriguing counterfactuals to me centers around Edwards’s untimely death in 1758. After accepting the position of president of the College of New Jersey, Edwards died of a small pox vaccination. He was 54 years old.

The reason that Edwards’s early…

Continue Reading

Pray for Jewish People on this Special Day

John Piper

January 27 marks the anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz-Birkenau, the largest Nazi death camp in 1945. In 2005, the United Nations General Assembly designated this day as International Holocaust Remembrance Day.

May I suggest that we take a few minutes and pray with the apostle Paul: “My heart’s desire and prayer to God for them [my Jewish kinsmen] is that they may be saved” (Romans 10:1).

Robert Murray McCheyne, a young Scottish pastor who died in 1843, loved the…

Continue Reading

Can We See Jesus Better Than the Saints in the Bible?

John Piper

Jesus speaks of three ways of seeing himself, each better than the one before.

  1. There were the people who saw him, the incarnate Son of God, and did not see the self-authenticating reality of his divine glory. They only saw a teacher or a prophet. “Seeing they do not see, and hearing they do not hear, nor do they understand” (Matthew 13:13).
  2. Then there were the prophets and righteous people in the Old Testament who did not see the incarnate…
Continue Reading

Good News in the Gibeonite Deception

Tyler Kenney

When Israel was fulfilling the Lord's command to take possession of the Promised Land and drive out its inhabitants, the Gibeonites, who were among them, recognized what was happening and concocted a plan.

They disguised themselves as worn out, weary travelers and approached Joshua, telling him they were from a far away land. They "acted with cunning" (Joshua 9:4) to escape being destroyed along with the other Canaanite nations.

They knew they couldn't ask Israel to just leave them alone.…

Continue Reading

Yom Kippur: It Is Finished

Jon Bloom

Today is Yom Kippur, the Day of Atonement. It is perhaps the holiest day in the Jewish year. The nation of Israel has all but shut down operations. And similar to Easter for non-religious people from Christian backgrounds, Yom Kippur has such strong traditional and cultural influence that even many non-observant Jews are attending synagogue and fasting today.

In ancient Israel, this was the day when two unblemished male goats were selected. Then by lot one was chosen…

Continue Reading

The ________ God of the Old Testament

Tyler Kenney

 How would you fill in the blank?

Chances are "vengeful" or "wrathful" were some of the first words to cross your mind. Why is that? Why has the God of the Old Testament become so associated with his wrath and, as usually follows, set in contrast to the "merciful" God of the New Testament?

Read Nehemiah 9 and "wrathful" is not the primary image of God you get.

This is one of the great chapters in the Old Testament: the…

Continue Reading

Solomon Is Not the One

Jonathan Parnell

In Deuteronomy 17 Moses instructs Israel concerning the king that they will one day appoint for themselves. He gives the following three negative stipulations:

  1. he must not acquire many horses (v.16)
  2. he must not acquire many wives (v.17a)
  3. he must not acquire excessive silver and gold (v. 17b)

Now fast forward to Samuel and Kings. In 2 Samuel 7:12-17, God promises King David a son who will be king forever. Five chapters later his son Solomon is born, and by…

Continue Reading

All the Beautiful Virgins?

Jon Bloom

King Ahasuerus In Esther chapter 2, King Ahasuerus finds himself without a queen.

He had sacked Queen Vashti in a rage because she had refused to entertain him and his guests with her beauty, thereby encouraging uppity-ness in all the women of the kingdom.

But a king needs a queen. My goodness, where does one even begin? His advisors come up with a doozy of an idea:

'…let the king appoint officers in all the provinces of his kingdom to gather…

Continue Reading

The Unlikeliness of Israel

John Piper

To mark the 60th anniversary of the birth of the modern State of Israel, let’s listen to a voice from 100 years before this state was born.

Who was it that said in 1867 that the existence of the Jews in the modern world was an insurmountable obstacle in the way of reasonable unbelief? It was J. C. Ryle. And who was he? J. I. Packer, quoting Richard Hobson and calling it a “just estimate,” describes Ryle like this:

He…

Continue Reading