Redemptive History and Revelation 11:15-19

Redemptive History and Revelation 11:15-19

 

1. Introduction to the Drama of Redemptive History

A. Genesis 1-11 is the introduction to the entire drama that will unfold in the rest of Scripture

1. Creation was glorious and good and made my the hands of the pre-incarnate Jesus

2. The Fall; reign of the rebellious and destructive evil one

3. Humanity, the pinnacle of Jesus’ creation, was caught up in the rebellion as active

participants and were brought under the slave power of the evil one and dead toward                                 Jesus

 

Genesis 3 is one of the most important chapters in the entire Bible because it explains the source of and solution for sin and death.

 

The scene is the beautiful and perfect garden made by God for our first parents to live in together without sin and its many effects.

 

There God lovingly and graciously speaks as a Father to Adam and Eve, giving them complete freedom to enjoy all of creation except the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, which was forbidden.

 

The entrance of the Serpent marks the beginning of chaos in creation. The Serpent is Satan according to Revelation 12:9 and 20:2.

 

Satan began by tempting Eve to mistrust God’s Word by changing its meaning, just as he did when likewise tempting Jesus in Matthew 4:1–11.

 

Rather than rebuking Satan, Eve entertained his lies (John 8:42–47) and was subsequently deceived by his crafty arguments (2 Cor. 11:3; 1 Tim. 2:14).

 

Satan was so bold as to accuse God of being a liar and tempted the pride of Adam and Eve by declaring that if they disobeyed God they could in effect become his peer and gods themselves. Eve believed Satan over God and chose pride over humility by partaking of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil in sin against God.

 

Tragically, we further read that while all of this occurred Adam stood by silently, failing to lead his family in godliness. Adam then joined his wife in sin, which brought shame, distrust, and separation between Adam and Eve, and between our first parents and God.

 

Adam was the representative and father of all mankind, and when he sinned and fell out of favor with God so did every person who would ever live (Rom. 5:12; 1 Cor. 15:21–22). Consequently, every person since Adam and Eve, other than Jesus, is a sinner, both by nature and choice (Ps. 51:5; 58:3; Isa. 53:6; 64:6; Rom. 3:23; 1 John 1:18).[1]

 

“The rest of the Bible is not simply a bundle of divergent, unrelated stories as it is sometimes taught in Sunday-School. Rather, the Bible consists of a single drama: the entrance of the Kingdom, the power, and the glory of the living God in this enemy-occupied territory. From Genesis 12 to the end of the Bible, and indeed until the end of time, there unfolds the single, coherent drama of the Kingdom striking back. In this unfolding drama we see the gradual but irresistible power of God re-conquering and redeeming his fallen creation through the giving of his own Son…This is tersely summed up: “The Son of God appeared for this purpose, that he might destroy the works of the devil” (1 John 3:8).[2]

 

B. Cain and Abel: Murder over worship

 

C. Noah and the Flood: Genesis 6:5 and the evil of man

 

D. The command to fill the earth and multiply again: Genesis 9:1

E. The Tower of Babel: Genesis 11:1-4 and the desire to make a name for themselves and         rebel

 

Ultimately, man wants a name for himself, echoing the temptation from the garden, and to take the place of God and rebel against his commands thereby taking glory for himself and not giving glory to God.

 

2. The Grand Story of God’s Glory

The story of the Bible is a story about God more than it is about people.

 

The Bible is not like a “year book”. In a yearbook, the first thing we do is open it and start looking for us.

 

If we treat the Bible like a yearbook we either get radically disappointed or we make the biblical text say things it does not say.

 

The Bible is one book comprised of 66 chapters with one author and many scribes telling one cohesive metanarrative!

 

This one story has many smaller scenes that make up the drama of redemptive history.

 

In order to see how the drama of redemptive history comes together in the biblical stories, we’ll need to work on defining well three biblical terms:

 

         A. Glory

         Weight, intrinsic worth, substance, brilliance and beauty

Psalm 86:9

All the nations you have made shall come

and worship before you, O Lord,

and shall glorify your name.

 

Philippians 3:3

For we are the circumcision, who worship by the Spirit of God and glory in Christ Jesus and put no confidence in the flesh—

        

         B. God’s Name

         God reveals himself by name for reference, revelation and reputation

Reference: LORD of hosts, God Almighty

Revelation: the LORD is my shepherd

Reputation: Ezekiel 36

 

 

C. Worship

Worship is communion with God in which believers, by grace, center their mind’s attention and heart’s affection on the LORD, humbly glorifying God in response to the revelation of his glory and his majesty.

 

Worship not only delights and reveals God; it fulfills God’s love for people by bringing them to a place of their highest honor before Him. Humankind is honored when humans worship, glory in and revel in their maker, which is their created purpose. We were made to make much of God.

 

Worship matters because God desires to be known in precision and worshiped globally by people who know him.

 

“Missions is not the ultimate goal of the church. Worship is. Missions exist because worship doesn’t. Worship is ultimate, not missions, because God is ultimate, not man. When this age is over, and the countless millions of the redeemed fall on their faces before the throne of God, missions will be no more. It is a temporary necessity. But worship abides forever…

 

Worship, therefore, is the fuel and goal of missions. It’s the goal of missions because in missions we simply aim to bring the nations into the white-hot enjoyment of God’s glory. The goal of missions is the gladness of the peoples in the greatness of God. ‘The Lord reigns; let the earth rejoice; let the many coastlands be glad!’ (Ps 97:1). ‘Let the peoples praise you, O God; let all the peoples praise you! Let the nations be glad and sing for joy!” (Ps 67:3-4)…

 

But worship is also the fuel of missions. Passion for God in worship precedes the offer of God in preaching. You can’t commend what you don’t cherish. Missionaries will never call out ‘let the nations be glad!’ who cannot say from the heart, ‘I rejoice in the Lord…I will be glad and exult in you, I will sing praise to your name, O Most High” (Ps 104:34; 9:2). Missions begins and ends in worship…

 

Where passion for God is weak, zeal for missions will be weak. Churches that are not centered on the exaltation of the majesty and beauty of God will scarcely kindle a fervent desire to ‘declare his glory among the nations” (Ps 96:3). – John Piper

 

Glory, God’s name and worship come together as key elements in the story of redemptive history.

 

God is glorious and he reveals that to us and it is to our good to glory in God as he is.

 

I would argue this is the grand goal of missions. Show God Glorious as he has revealed himself and invite nations to come and glory in the glorious one.

 

 


3. God Reveals Glory to Get Glory

God’s mission purpose throughout the story of the Bible can be seen in the double direction of God’s glory.

 

God’s mission is to reveal his glory to all nations in order to receive glory from all nations.

 

Psalm 96

Oh sing to the LORD a new song;

sing to the LORD, all the earth!

Sing to the LORD, bless his name;

tell of his salvation from day to day.

Declare his glory among the nations,

                   his marvelous works among all the peoples!

         For great is the LORD, and greatly to be praised;

                   he is to be feared above all gods.

         For all the gods of the peoples are worthless idols,

                   but the LORD made the heavens.

Splendor and majesty are before him;

strength and beauty are in his sanctuary.

 

Ascribe to the LORD, O families of the peoples,

                   ascribe to the LORD glory and strength!

         Ascribe to the LORD the glory due his name;

                   bring an offering, and come into his courts!

         Worship the LORD in the splendor of holiness;

                   tremble before him, all the earth!

 

Say among the nations, “The LORD reigns!

Yes, the world is established; it shall never be moved;

he will judge the peoples with equity.”

 

Let the heavens be glad, and let the earth rejoice;

let the sea roar, and all that fills it;

let the field exult, and everything in it!

Then shall all the trees of the forest sing for joy

before the LORD, for he comes,

for he comes to judge the earth.

He will judge the world in righteousness,

and the peoples in his faithfulness.

2-3 God mandates that his glory go TO the nations

 

7-9 God desires glory FROM the nations

 

World evangelization is the fullest expression of God revealing His glory to the nations with the purpose of God receiving glory from the nations.

 

4. Right Ends and Means

Often Jesus is presented poorly and perhaps, arguably, wrongly as a means to an end rather than the end himself.

 

Man is often thought of as vitally important and God, taking note of this and needing fellowship, saved man.

 

There is purpose beyond salvation itself. God does not save man to save him from hell. This puts man as the end and God and salvation as the means to exalt man for being worthy to save. That’s not right.

 

God saves man for something. God saves man so that man can fulfill his created purpose and that is to fear, reverence, love and glory / exult in God through Jesus Christ.

 

We were made to bring glory, weight to God.

 

Isaiah 43:6-7

[6] I will say to the north, Give up,

and to the south, Do not withhold;

bring my sons from afar

and my daughters from the end of the earth,

[7] everyone who is called by my name,

whom I created for my glory,

whom I formed and made.”

 

In other words: God reveals glory to get glory


[1] Mark Driscoll, The Fall: God Judges, Mars Hill Church.

[2] Ralph Winter, The Kingdom Strikes Back, (Perspectives Reader), ed. Steven Hawthorne, p. 209.

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