Thursday, February 8, 2018


I find great satisfaction in showing how the Old and New Testaments dovetail so precisely as to demonstrate that they represent one single plan, a design by a Great Planner. I therefore challenge my classes: “Can you name just one NT doctrine that cannot be found in the OT?” I am still waiting.

Yesterday I thought I found one. Jesus revealed that, “No one can come to me unless the Father who sent me draws him” (John 6:44). At first, it seemed to me that the bulk of OT teachings declared that Israel could come to their God and find forgiveness. However, I began to find indications that they could not come apart from God drawing them. The Psalmist revealed:

·       Blessed is the one you choose and bring near, to dwell in your courts! (Psalm 65:4)

Truly, Israel has been a chosen nation, which God had drawn near to Himself (Psalm 33:12). However, I began to see that God drawing His people had to be more than that. The OT also taught about a more profound and internal drawing, which God would achieve for His chosen:

·       But to this day the LORD has not given you a heart to understand or eyes to see or ears to hear. (Deuteronomy 29:4)

However, through Moses, the Lord promised Israel that this would change:

·       And the LORD your God will circumcise your heart and the heart of your offspring, so that you will love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul, that you may live. (Deuteronomy 30:6)

Israel’s love for her God had been very situational. When they were afflicted, they would cry out for their God but would soon forget about Him once their situation improved. However, He promised that He would give them a new spirit:

·       “And I will pour out on the house of David and the inhabitants of Jerusalem a spirit of grace and pleas for mercy, so that, when they look on me, on him whom they have pierced, they shall mourn for him, as one mourns for an only child, and weep bitterly over him, as one weeps over a firstborn. On that day the mourning in Jerusalem will be as great as the mourning for Hadad-rimmon in the plain of Megiddo.” (Zechariah 12:10-11)

God promised that He would draw Israel and that Israel would come, as Jesus had declared (John 6:44). This would be achieved through a New Covenant and a new circumcised heart:

·       I will sprinkle clean water on you, and you shall be clean from all your uncleannesses, and from all your idols I will cleanse you. And I will give you a new heart, and a new spirit I will put within you. And I will remove the heart of stone from your flesh and give you a heart of flesh. And I will put my Spirit within you, and cause you to walk in my statutes and be careful to obey my rules. (Ezekiel 36:25-27)

·       I will give them one heart and one way, that they may fear me forever, for their own good and the good of their children after them. I will make with them an everlasting covenant, that I will not turn away from doing good to them. And I will put the fear of me in their hearts, that they may not turn from me. I will rejoice in doing them good, and I will plant them in this land in faithfulness, with all my heart and all my soul. (Jeremiah 32:39-41)

God would draw Israel in such way a that they would remain faithful to Him. He also promised to draw others to a now redeemed Israel:

·       The Lord GOD, who gathers the outcasts of Israel, declares, “I will gather yet others to him besides those already gathered.” (Isaiah 56:8)

Israel’s God had already unilaterally drawn those to Him who weren’t even looking for Him:

·       Then Isaiah [65:1] is so bold as to say, “I have been found by those who did not seek me; I have shown myself to those who did not ask for me.” (Romans 10:20)

How did these Gentiles come to the Savior? They wouldn’t have come unless He had drawn them, as Jesus declared. Yet there are some mysteries that remain undisclosed even in the NT.

All of Jesus’ teachings find their antecedents in the OT. His religion was the religion of the OT revealed as never before. I am increasingly astounded that everything He had taught bears witness to the OT and the one unified plan of God.

The Bible could not have been the product of over forty men writing over a period of 1500 years and from very different cultures and positions. Instead, it represents a unity, the product of one superior Mind.

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