Before Bethlehem

By Stewart McCarter, December 04, 2022

Jesus is All in All and Always has been.


  1. The entire Old Testament is patterned after Jesus, it is “Jesus shaped”
  2. The story is as broad as the Old Testament, and each piece is a fraction of it.
  3. 1 Corinthians 10:1-11 is a picture of this
  4. Paul points out the OT is the pattern, but in verses 4 and 9 he lets us know that Jesus is also pledged and present in the OT.
  1. The OT saints looked forward to the redemptive Messiah because of the promises
  2. Jesus, Paul and Peter point these out Luke 24:25-27; Acts 26:22-23; 1 Peter 1:10-13
  3. All faith is messianic faith
  1. Jesus is seen in a body in the OT
  1. The “I Am” is rejoiced by Abraham John 8:56-58
  2. The Lord that was the mover of Moses was Jesus. Hebrews 11:26
  3. The Redeemer that delivered the Israelites from Egypt was Jesus. Jude 5
  4. The Rock in the wilderness is Christ 1 Corinthians 10:4
  5. The King of Isaiah’s temple vision was the Son of God John 12:40-41
  1. This is important because the character of God and faith have not changed from the Old Testament to the New Testament
  1. God has always been triune
  2. The Father did not begin to need a mediator at Christmas John 1:1-14
  3. Faith has not changed fundamentally. Faith has always been about a promised Person.
  1. Jesus in the garden Genesis 3
  1. Pattern - Jesus clothed Adam and Eve by sacrificing an innocent animal to cover their nakedness. “We, the guilty, are robed by an alien righteousness” Isaiah 6:10; Galatians 3:27
  2. Pledged - “The seed of the woman” implies a miraculous birth Genesis 3:15
  3. Present - Who is this Lord who walks with his favored creatures in the cool of the day? Genesis 3:8; and John 1:18; Colossians 1:15
  1. Jesus speaks on Moriah (Genesis 22)
  1. Pattern - Who is this son (vs2)? He is Abrahams beloved son on whom all of God’s promises are focused. If he dies God will have to, well, raise him from the dead! Hebrews 11:19
  1. This mountain is the mountain of Calvary (Genesis 22:1-14; 2 Chronicles 3:1) Isaac carries the wood on his back up that mountain
  1. Pledged - Abraham calls the place “The Lord will Provide”
  2. Present - The Angel of the LORD interrupts this obedience to God’s command! Who does He think He is? Genesis 22:16-17). Here called “The Sent One” God from God
  1. Jesus Burns at the Bush (Exodus 3)
  1. Pattern - Plants are often used as a metaphor for God’s people. God’s people are in a furnace of suffering and God himself, the Great “I AM” descends into the burning to be with them. The Exodus is the pattern of the Gospel.
  2. Pledged - Genesis 12 The seed of Abraham, both Israel and Jesus (Galatians 3:16) The Exodus is the illustration of the coming Christ
  3. Present - ‘Yahweh” is used 6,800 times in the Hebrew Bible. God is “ He who dwells in the bush” Deuteronomy 33:16, The Andes of the LORD who is Himself the LORD. (Exodus 3:2, 6, 14) Jude can look back on Exodus and say “Jesus . . . saved a people out of the land of Egypt (Jude 5)

The Old Testament is a Christian Scripture. Jesus is the true temple, lamb, priest, king, and prophet. He is the true and better Joseph, David, Jonah ad infinitum ad nauseam. From Genesis 3:15 on Jesus is the seed - The seed of the woman, the seed of Abraham, the seed of David and Jesus fulfills every promise of land, peace, blessing, and so on. What straddles the Old and the New Testament is not a plan or a promise, it is a person. The person of the Lord Jesus Christ. “Jesus unites the Bible. He is not absent from the Old Testament, sitting on the bench, awaiting his fourth quarter winning play. He is the player-coach-manager directing all things. Throughout the Old Testament, he is the one and only Mediator of God Most High, marching purposefully toward his own incarnation, Jesus is Lord, He always has been.” Glen Scrivener.

What about you?

  1. Jesus is the focus of all of scripture. Is He the focus of your life?
  2. All scripture teaches us about Christ. Which book is the focus of your study right now?
  3. Jesus came for all people. To whom are you currently being a witness?