Feb

17

2011

Collin Hansen|9:11 AM CT

TGC Recommends: Preaching Christ in the Old Testament

When Christians understand all the scriptures as God’s Word for them, their eyes open to the incomparable beauty of the divine character. God loves us, despite how we persistently rebel against him. God stands over and against us in judgment, yet he pursues us. He has shown us the way to live in the world he graciously created, even as we ignore his perfect law. And from the beginning of all things he planned to take on flesh and dwell among us, faithfully pursuing his unfaithful servants, even unto death on the cross, so that in this death we might find eternal life.

Sadly, too many Christians jump into this story midstream. They know bits and pieces of the Old Testament—how God created the heavens and the earth, what rules he commands us to follow, how he worked through faithful believers to judge enemies. But they often fail to see how it all fits together as one story of grace from first to last, featuring God’s ultimate act of salvation in Jesus Christ.

Announcing a New Project

Seeking to fulfill our mission to promote gospel-centered ministry for the next generation, The Gospel Coalition wants to help Christians see Jesus Christ in all the Scripture, beginning in the Old Testament. That's why we're excited today to announce a new project—TGC Recommends: Preaching Christ in the Old Testament. This expansive and expanding collection of resources—books, articles, sermons, workshops, interviews, outlines, and more—seeks to equip teachers so they can acquaint other Christians with the full gospel story. Whether you preach regularly, lead a small group, or simply want to learn more about the Bible, you’ll find resources here that will unveil the incomparable beauty of this grand, sweeping narrative.

The new site draws on The Gospel Coalition's vast resource database of sermons and articles collected from our council members and many others. We believe these resources will model Christ-centered teaching from the Old Testament and inspire you to do likewise. We've interviewed experts such as Sidney Greidanus, Paul House, and Steve Mathewson to help us understand some of the different approaches to preaching Christ in the Old Testament.

But we have also leaned on friends in ministries such as the Charles Simeon Trust to collect and distribute workshops that will hone your teaching skills. We've surveyed practitioners who faithfully model gospel-centered preaching to recommend the best books on the subject in general and specifically related to a variety of topics. Already you'll see that we've devoted pages to preaching Old Testament narrative, the Ten Commandments, Jonah, and Psalms. This is just a start. We'll continue to build the site with more recommendations to prepare you to teach Old Testament genres, subjects, books, and characters. We'll also address the New Testament's use of the Old Testament and biblical/theological themes we can trace from Genesis to Revelation.

Starter Kits for Teaching the OT

Our goal is that you would visit this site for encouragement and equipping before you preach and Old Testament series or lead smaller groups at your church in studying the Hebrew Bible. Consider this site your essential starter kit before embarking on the exciting but potentially harrowing journey of leading fellow believers into the imposing wilds of the Old Testament's 39 books.

We're especially grateful for our partners at BibleMesh, without whom this project would not be possible. They have enthusiastically supported this project, and we likewise encourage you to check out their interactive Bible learning website, which presents the story of God's redemptive acts as a single narrative from Genesis to Revelation. We're also teaming up at TGC's national conference in April to bring you live, unscripted discussions on this vital topic of preaching Christ in the Old Testament. Of course, this new project corresponds with the conference theme, as an esteemed group of teachers—Don Carson, Tim Keller, Alistair Begg, and Matt Chandler among them—will preach the gospel from a variety of Old Testament texts.

As we move forward, however, this project will not thrive unless our faithful and experienced readers participate. We're glad to seed the new site with our best recommendations. But our perspective is limited. "Preaching Christ in the Old Testament" is part of a larger effort under the banner of "TGC Recommends" to share our readership's collective wisdom with fellow believers. You may have seen our first foray into this venture with John Starke's series of posts about evangelism on TGC's blog. A series on prayer will be forthcoming.

Know a book that helped your preach the gospel in Exodus? Let us know. Hear a sermon from Jeremiah that inspired you to praise God and give him thanks for forgiving your sins? Send us the link. Post a comment. Join the conversation so we can learn from your experience. Together, let us exalt the Lord Jesus Christ and worship him as the one to whom all Scriptures point (Luke 24:27).

Collin Hansen serves as editorial director for The Gospel Coalition. He is the co-author of A God-Sized Vision: Revival Stories That Stretch and Stir. He and his wife belong to Redeemer Community Church in Birmingham, Alabama, and he serves on the advisory board of Beeson Divinity School. You can follow him on Twitter.

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