Summer with the Prophets

I hate the beach. Sand gets everywhere and the ocean is super salty and full of sharks. That’s not my kind of summer vacation. I don’t know what your plans are for the summer, but if you’re in town I’d love for you to join us at Revolution Church starting the second weekend in May for a Summer with the Prophets. I am super excited to be spending my summer working through select minor prophets with our church. There’s lots to discuss and lots of ways to grow.

This 12 week sermon series which I will be primarily responsible for is going to introduce us to the prophets and then zero in on the books of Micah, Jonah, and Habakkuk. Along the way I hope to explore a number of themes: the glory of God, the responsibility of believers, satisfaction found in God, racism, and rebellion. We will be seeking to wrestle with a larger theme all throughout the series which addresses the relationship between grace and obedience. Our goal is really going to be to try to understand the prophets in light of the New Testament. How are we to understand and read this complicated and often seemingly irrelevant books?

Far too many people think that the way to read the prophets is with their news papers in hand. That is to say, they believe the way to read the prophets is to look for world events that parallel what is described in the books. This approach is built, however, off of a faulty understanding of the prophets themselves. A prophet was simply a spokesman for God. They were not particularly known for foreseeing the future and forecasting events. Some did, and we will see how that happened in this series. But the primary way we should read the prophets is just like we read the rest of the Bible: by interpreting it in light of its immediate context. The prophets wrote in real-time to real people facing real situations. They were not simply telling the future, they were calling men and women to repent and return to the living God or face the consequences. The prophets are not first and foremost about oil and helicopters, China and Russia, nor nuclear holocaust. The prophets are speaking the word of God to a specific people in a specific situation.

That isnt’ to say that God’s spokesman didn’t at times foretell the future. They most certainly did. But we must not interpret these events as if they are often so obviously connected to current world events. We can’t know those sorts of things and the Bible doesn’t give us an interpretive key in that manner. What it does give us, however, is the promise that all of it points to Christ. This is the other major theme we will spend time focusing on this summer. How do the prophets point us to Jesus and connect us with the mission of God’s Kingdom? That answer is far more involved than a few select prophecies. It is the central and running theme of the whole of the prophetic ministry from Moses to Malachi. My hope is that by seeing the redemptive purposes of the prophetic literature we will be able to more appropriately interpret them.

Come join us this summer as we unpack our the prophets. It’s not the beach, but you probably won’t get sunburned here.

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