Monday, December 17, 2012

Christ and the Bible (great reading)

It's been a long time since my last post. 
Last couple of years... crazy beyond craziness. Lots of struggle, but praise the Lord, I'm still around and I can say I have been blessed.

Today I opened the STEP Reader that comes with eSword free software (which I heartily recommend) and found this 1940 sermon. I paste some extracts for I am sure the words will bless many. The author is Dr. J. B. Chapman, and the subject is "Christ and the Bible."

... The chief unity of the Bible grows out of the fact that it has but one hero -- the Lord Jesus Christ. The Bible mentions many men. But the men of the Bible are important only in their relationship to Jesus. A long roster of names makes interesting reading because all the men in that list were progenitors of Jesus on the human side. Good men, great men, and wise men all become types of Jesus and hence occupy a relative importance. Even bad men are known because they contrast with the One who did no sin, neither was guile found in His mouth. And if you find a good man in the Bible and cannot make out just why his story is told, you will usually find the key by bringing the story to bear upon the Ideal Man who is the hero of the whole Book.

    The Bible contains many descriptions of places and things. But places and things are important only as they touch the life of Jesus. Bethlehem is the best known city in the world, because Jesus was born there. Jerusalem can never be forgotten, because Jesus died there. The tabernacle and the temple are interesting to the minutest detail, because they speak of Jesus and His work for the salvation of men. The Bible is simply a book about Jesus. Jesus is the subject of its history and its prophecy. He is the antitype of its types. If you find something in the Bible that seems to be a very good thing and you do not know what it means, just guess that it in some way represents Christ and you will not miss it one time in a hundred.

    And what is said of the Bible in general can be said of every book in the Bible in particular. In Genesis Jesus is the "seed of the woman" that bruises the serpent's head. In Exodus He is the Paschal Lamb whose blood upon the lintels and the doorposts caused the destroying angel to "Passover." In Leviticus He is the great High Priest whose intercessions are accepted for all who believe. In Numbers He is the guiding pillar of cloud and fire on the way to our promised land. In Deuteronomy He is the "prophet like unto Moses" who shall teach His people and guide them unerringly. In Joshua He is "the man with the drawn sword" come to command the hosts of the Lord and to lead them on to victory. He is the Judge just and supreme in the Book of Judges. He is the model husband (the Ishi of the Church) in the Book of Ruth. He is the unerring Seer in the Books of Samuel, the faultless King in the Books of Kings, the unfailing Sovereign in the Books of Chronicles, the pattern preacher in Ezra, the Restorer of the waste places in Nehemiah, and the Deliverer of the nation in the Book of Esther. In Job He is the Lord of the Resurrection and the Daysman or Umpire who will give us consideration in the game of life. In the Psalms He is the Good Shepherd, the Shield and Buckler, the fortress and Strong Tower. He is the personification of wisdom in Proverbs and Ecclesiastes, and the Ideal Lover in the Song of Solomon. In Isaiah He is the child born, the Son given, the prince of peace, the wonderful Counselor, and the Suffering Savior. He is the Balm of Gilead and the Great Physician of Jeremiah, the Only Hope of Lamentations, the Reviver of the dry bones in the valley in Ezekiel, and the Stone cut out of the mountain without hands which shall destroy all kingdoms of the earth and itself fill all the earth in the Book of Daniel.

    Then we come to the Minor Prophets where we find that Jesus is the Redeemer of the unworthy in Hosea, the Outpourer of the full measure of the Spirit in Joel, and the Giver of abundant harvests in Amos. In Obadiah He is the Enlarger of Israel's inheritance. In Jonah He is the Merciful Ruler. In Micah He is the Gatherer of the nations to Zion. In Nahum He is the Healer of Bruises. In Habakkuk H
e is the inheritance that remains when the fig tree fails to blossom, neither is there fruit in the vines; when the labor of the olive shall fail, and the fields shall yield no meat; the flock shall be cut off from the fold, and there is no herd in the stall. He is the Author of Israel's song in Zephaniah, the Beautifier of the New Temple in Haggai, the Opener of the cleansing fountain in Zechariah, and the Purifier of the sons of Levi in Malachi.

    In the New Testament Jesus breaks forth as the Messiah of the Jews in Matthew, the peerless World Worker in Mark, the Son of Man in Luke, and the Son of God in John. He is the Outpourer of the Holy Ghost in the Acts, the Author of the Law of Life in Romans, the Head of the Church in Corinthians, the Giver of free salvation in Galatians, the Eternal Author of Holiness in Ephesians, and the highest goal of life and eternity in Philippians. He is the Indwelling Christ in Colossians, the Lord of the Second Advent in First and Second Thessalonians, the Ideal Pastor in Timothy and Titus, and the Friend of the Friendless in Philemon. In Hebrews Jesus is the antitype of all types; the head of all creation, higher than angels, and yet lower than angels in that He tasted death for every man. His blood takes the place of all the blood of beasts and birds that ever died on Jewish altars, and through the rent veil of His smitten body He makes a way for us to enter into the inner sanctum sanctorum where God himself sits upon the throne of His glory. In James Jesus is the pattern for practical living. In Peter Christ's is the voice of thunder. In John Jesus is the personification of love. In Jude He is the God of lightning. In Revelation Jesus is the Alpha and the Omega.

    Christ is the Second Adam as the head of the new creation. He is a Prophet whose words never fail. He is a Priest after the order of Melchisedec whose everlasting priesthood enables Him to save to the uttermost all who come to God by Him. He is a King who shall sit upon the throne of His father David and rule from the rivers unto the ends of the earth. He is the Companion of the Everlasting Father and the ever blessed Spirit, and is Himself the Second Person in the adorable Trinity.

    In the imagery of this blessed Bible Jesus Christ is the answer to every need. To the hungry He is bread. To the thirsty He is water. To the sick He is physician and healing balm. To the accused He is Advocate at court. To the condemned He brings pardon. He opens the prison to those already incarcerated. To those whose lives are wasted He gives beauty for ashes. He is the Rose of Sharon for beauty, the Lily of the Valley for purity, the Morning Star for Hope, the Lamb of God for atonement, and a Great Rock in a weary land and "a shelter in the time of storm." He is the Lion of the Tribe of Judah for power, and in this function He breaks every chain and gives us the victory again and again. He is money to the poor, wisdom to the ignorant, and holiness to the defiled. And if there be a prayer for which no fitting word can be found, then he is the answer to that too, for He is "the desire of all nations."

    When Jesus was here in the flesh He never met His match, although He was challenged at every step. Denied a place in the palace, He was born a King in a stable. Refused the adoration of sages, He was worshipped by shepherds. Since no Levites came to chant, angels sang His Christmas carol. The great did not apply for tuition in His school, so He chose humble fishermen and despised tax-gatherers to be His disciples.

    Being Himself a miracle, the normal atmosphere of His life was friendly to miracles. People regularly came to ask Him to do the impossible. And after admitting it to be impossible they went right along and asked Him to do it.

    When taxes came due and the purse was empty, the first fish taken at the Master's command furnished money for double taxes. When ten thousand people came to Him in the desert He fed them all without opening a fish market or founding a bakery. Ten lepers were healed by the Word of His power all in a group. Maimed, halt, blind, leprous, palsied -- all were alike to Him. He healed them all. When the boat went away and left Him, He made a pavement of the sea, and reached His destination on time. When the restless waves would flood the ship on which He rode, He calmed them as a mother would put her feverish child to sleep. He broke up the only funeral He ever attended by restoring the dead youth alive to his mother. "It is fortunate," says D. L. Moody, "that He called the name of Lazarus that day when He said, 'Come forth.' For otherwise all the dead would have come at His invitation, as they will yet do some time."

    His whole life was vicarious and substitutionary. He came down to our world that we might go up to His world. He was born in a stable and cradled in a manger that He might get down beneath us all and lift us up to God. He was despised and rejected of men that we might be accepted of God and admired by angels forevermore. He walked the dirt roads of our world that we might walk the golden streets of heaven. He bore a cross that we might wear a crown. He drank vinegar mingled with gall that we might drink the water of life. He wore a crown of thorns that we might wear a crown of life. He was with the wicked in His death that we might be with the righteous in everlasting life. He was lifted up upon a cross that we might be lifted up upon a throne. He went down into the grave that we might come up out of the grave in the glory of His resurrection. He took our place on earth that we might share His place in heaven forever.

    Oh, blessed Christ, Thou hast won my heart. I fall at Thy feet in adoration. I worship Thee. I praise and glorify Thee. I ask no portion except the privilege of sitting at Thy feet. In Thy presence there is fulness of joy and at Thy right hand there are pleasures forevermore.

    I cannot understand all the ways of God with me. But I know He has my good at heart, and I will trust Him forevermore. A man passing along the way saw a father attempting to chastise his little son. But the son drew near, threw his arms about his father's knees and clung so close that the blows fell upon him with small effect. And that is what I am doing and plan to do. I shall cling closely to Him. Even though He slay me, yet will I trust Him. No matter what He does, I know it is done in love, and I shall not draw away.


  1. Wow! The description of Christ in every book has just awed me greatly! Seeking that software ASAP!

  2. untonyto and Ernest! I've just seen your comments. And Ernest, I hope you have the software by now and you're being greatly blessed by it!