Stott on Christ in the Old Testament

The Old Testament is a book of hope, of unfulfilled expectation. From beginning to end it looks forward to Christ. Its many promises through Abraham, Moses and the prophets find their fulfilment in Christ. Its law, with its unbending demands, was man’s ‘custodian until Christ came’, keeping him confined and under restraint, even in bondage, until Christ should set him free (Gal. 3:23 – 4:7). Its sacrificial system, teaching day after day that without the shedding of blood there could be no forgiveness, prefigured the unique bloodshedding of the Lamb of God. Its kings, for all their imperfections, foreshadowed the Messiah’s perfect reign of righteousness and peace. And its prophecies are all focused upon him. Thus Jesus Christ is the seed of the woman who would bruise the serpent’s head, the posterity of Abraham through whom all the families of the earth would be blessed, the star that would come forth out of Jacob and the sceptre that would rise out of Israel. Jesus Christ is also the priest after the order of Melchizedek, the king of David’s line, the servant of the Lord God who would suffer and die for the sins of the people, the Son of God who would inherit the nations, and the Son of man, coming with the clouds of heaven, to whom would be given dominion, glory and a kingdom, that all peoples, nations and languages should serve him for ever. Directly or indirectly Jesus Christ is the grand theme of the Old Testament. Consequently he was able to interpret to his disciples ‘in all the scriptures the things concerning himself’ (Lk. 24:27).

– John Stott

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