As I wrote on my last blog,
“I believe the Bible points us to Christ. Christ is the focus of the Bible. Interpretation of the Bible has to filter through the lens of Christ. Teachings that bring people towards Christ should be encouraged. Teachings that lead us distract from Christ should be avoided.”
On the surface, it is an easy concept for those who claimed to be Christians to agree. Since “Christian” means “Christ follower”, their beliefs, lifestyles, and behavior should be Christ-centred.
There are books written about the Centrality of Christ. I will take it to another level.
If Christ is the centre, the teachings or the interpretations of the Bible have to reflect this over-arching principle. If I use this principle to view any ancient and modern teachings from the church, I gain a different insight from the Bible.
I would like to learn from Jesus like if I had lived in the first century. The apostles and those who personally heard the sermons from Jesus had a better understand of Him than anyone of us today because of the language, cultural, geographical and tempo barriers.
I believe Jesus was the best and only representation of God to humankind. Christ appealed to them though His presence. They learned firsthand by His words, deeds and miracles. Jesus taught them how the Old Testament teachings were actually focused on Him.
He was truly the centre of the Old Testament, the Bible of the time. That was significant!
His teachings and deeds superseded and fulfilled all the teachings of the Old Testament. All previous practices on the Sabbath, cleansing, animal sacrifices, and Jewish self-imposed segregation from the Gentiles… paled or became worthless compared to Christ Himself.
There are significant consequences to how I response to the principle of the centrality of Christ.
If Christ is the centre, we should put Christ in the centre as we interpret the Bible. We should see all the events, teachings, and prophecy as Christ would have intended for us to learn.
Instead of arguing whether a certain record is historically, literally, or factually true, we should learn how we can use that record to draw us and other closer to Christ.
Instead of trying to prove the universe is less than ten thousand years old, literal six, twenty-four-hour day creation, we should look at the beauty of God’s creation. I have not heard of anyone be drawn closer to Christ by hearing an argument of literal six-day creation story.
Let the marvelous work of God speak to us, inspire us and draw us closer to Christ.