Devotional thoughts tagged as: 'New Testament'

Drawing Near to God

The Lord did not cease being holy when the New Testament began; his nature did not change. If we would know him as he is, we need an old testament fear of God combined with a New Testament experience of his Grace.

After Solomon dedicated the temple, the glory of the lord descended and filled his house (II Chronicles 7:1-3). What was this glory? It was the light breaking forth upon humanity. It signified the Lord's actual person had drawn near!

The Hebrew people knew God was holy. Yet he was too holy for them to face as sinful individuals. They served him without relating to him. Today, as Christians, through the blood of Jesus, God has opened the way for us to enter the holy place of his presence (Hebrews 10:19-22).

Be careful, many Christians celebrate the forgiveness of sins in Christ, but end their experience on that level. Jews still fear God, but lived outside his divine presence because they did not understand the forgiveness of sins in Christ.

It is the union of both truths which produces the power of understanding in our lives and leads us into the presence of God.

Dietrich Bonhoeffer's Interpretation of the New Testament

From the book "Letters and Papers From Prison"

August 23, 1935

One crucial aspect of the struggle with the Confessing Church with the Reich Church and Nazi theologians at the time was over the correct interpretation of Scripture. Representatives of the Reich Church were not above distorting the Bible texts in order to justify the racial policies then in place or to reinforce from a seemingly spiritual point of view for the discriminatory laws against the Jews. Bonhoeffer took issue with the German Christians accusing them of sacrificing the to a pagan ideology. The German Christians sought to make Christianity justify itself before the present age rather than the present age which must be asked to justify itself before the Christian message.

Here is what Bonhoeffer states:

"... The relevant is and begins where God himself is in his Word. The Holy Ghost is the relevant subject not we ourselves, so the Holy Ghost is also the subject of the interpretation. ..."

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