Category Archives: Biblical Theology

John Piper on Christ’s Obedience

The Sufficiency of Christ’s Obedience in His Life and Death

John Piper has give us some excellent thoughts on Christ’s obedience as it relates to Jesus’ whole life.

Piper says, “It is more likely that when Paul spoke of Jesus’ obedience as the cause of our justification he meant not merely the final acts of obedience on the cross, but rather the cross as the climax of his obedient life. . . . Thus when Paul compares the “one trespass” of Adam to Christ’s “one act of righteousness” (Romans 5:18), there is no single act in Christ’s life that corresponds to the eating of the forbidden fruit. Rather, his whole life of obedience was necessary so that he would not be a second failing Adam. One single sin would have put him in the category of a failing Adam. But it took one entire life of obedience to be a successful second Adam. That this complete life of obedience came to climax in the freely embraced death of Christ made such an overwhelming impression on his followers that they looked upon the “cross” or the “death” as the climax and sum of his obedience, but not separate from his cross-pursuing life.”

After reading this, I wonder if Piper’s thoughts might go well with James Jordan’s understand that Christ became the first mature man in history and attained to the glory that God had originally intended for Adam in the Garden. Jordan points out that, “He [Jesus] matured in faith, beyond the point where Adam failed. He matured to the point of being ready for adult responsibilities. Through his death, he became fully mature and was given dominion over ALL nations, over the wider world into which Adam had been prematurely cast.

In other words, Jesus’ whole life of obedience was required for Jesus to reach full maturity to be ready for death on the cross, thus receiving the resurrection and being given dominion over all of creation.

Hebrews 5:9 says, “And being made perfect, he became the source of eternal salvation to all who obey him.”

It seems very probable that John Piper and James Jordan could meld their views together for an excellent understanding of Christ’s obedience and maturity being credited to us by faith. But I’m sure I’m just dreaming! 😉

For more information on Adam and the Garden, along with a good analysis of James Jordan’s views, see this article.

In Christ and In Defense of the Faith,

On whom the end of the ages has come

1 Corinthians 10

11 Now these things happened to them as an example, but they were written down for our instruction, on whom the end of the ages has come. 12 Therefore let anyone who thinks that he stands take heed lest he fall. 13 No temptation has overtaken you that is not common to man. God is faithful, and he will not let you be tempted beyond your ability, but with the temptation he will also provide the way of escape, that you may be able to endure it.”

This passage is so integral to our understanding of today. Related to the story of the Bible and how it applies directly to us today, this passage tells us that the end of the ages has come upon us and that it has implications on how we live and how we deal daily with sin in our lives.

For those of you who are unfamiliar with the New Testament teaching, I hope to provide clarification starting with this post, and in other entries to come, as I offer commentary on the New Testament Theology course I am taking with Gordon-Conwell SemLink [see the previous post].

Have you thought about what it means that you are alive during this age of the creation? Do you realize that these days are the Latter Days that the Old Testament spoke so much about? As you can see from Paul’s words to the Corinthian Church, the End of the ages began in the first century with Jesus’ resurrection (the first fruits) but have continued all the way up to today since Jesus has not come back to consummate His Kingdom yet. (1 Cor. 15:20-28)

This means that we have received almost everything that was promised by God to the prophets of old! Listen to what the writer of Hebrews says in chapter 11

39 And all these, though commended through their faith, did not receive what was promised, 40 since God had provided something better for us, that apart from us they should not be made perfect.”

I will end the commentary for the moment, but I hope you will all consider this in your thoughts this week and seek to better understand God’s will for His people. The Lord bless you all as you realize that we are the people upon whom the end of the ages has come.

In Christ and In Defense of the Faith,

New Testament Theology & G. K. Beale

I have been blessed with the opportunity to take a course (for RTS credit) from Gordon-Conwell’s SemLink program entitled “New Testament Theology.” The professor is G. K. Beale and the course looks awesome!

The way SemLink works… you sign up for the class, pay, and they send you a CD with lectures, notes, etc. You also purchase any required books for the reading portion of the course and also take part in online discussion with other students enrolled in the same course. Lastly, you take a writen exam (in this case one final essay answering several important questions) and E-mail it to SemLink for the professor to grade it.

This course is very promising! Anyone interested in learning what the New Testament teaches must take this class and try to learn the interpretive lens that Dr. Beale puts forth in his explanation of the “big picture” of the New Testament, as well as the entire Bible.

Here is the syllabuswhich includes lecture topics, a required reading list, and bibliopgraphy of works cited, etc.

Since I was growing up (starting in high school), eschatology became and has remained central to my thinking about Scripture. I always desired to understand it and I actually learned much of what I know about the Bible because I devoted myself to studying eschatology. Even though my views have changed and matured over the years, by God’s grace He has always saw fit to tell me, “If you want to understand My written word, you must understand that you are living at the end of the the ages and that everything happening now must be seen in this light.”

I cannot tell you right now how much my thinking has changes over the years. But I continue to be astounded that many of my presuppositions were correct to begin with and many of the things I was taught when I was younger still hold true, even though much of the details have changed regarding the ‘when’ and ‘where’ of Bible prophecy.

Throughout this summer, as I take this online course, I hope to blog about my thoughts and interactions with the material and how my thinking changes or how I find God’s word clarified by my studies.

Once again, if you have the chance to take this course… TAKE IT! Whether you are a regular church member, a Sunday school teacher, or a minister of several years. If you do not know what “inaugurated eschatology” is, then you better find out quickly so that the Bible becomes more clear then you ever thought before!

In Christ and In Defense of the Faith,