By Rev. Eric Brown
What are the Scriptures about? While there is a lot of information in the Scriptures that is useful for many things – History, Art, Ethics – what are the Scriptures about? What is their point?
“Then [Jesus] opened their minds to understand the Scriptures, and said to them, ‘Thus it is written that the Christ should suffer and on the third day rise from the dead, and that repentance and forgiveness of sins should be proclaimed in His name to all nations, beginning from Jerusalem.”
When Jesus opens the disciples’ mind, when He pulls away all the other vain glories that they so liked to focus on, the point is this: Jesus died and rose so that you today could hear and know that your sins are forgiven. Yes, you. Right now. You’re part of all nations. The reason the Scriptures were written was so that the forgiveness Christ won could be proclaimed to you.
You are not incidental. It is not a mere accident of fate or quirk of history that you have heard the Gospel. No, this is precisely what God has had in mind – that you hear the Gospel of Christ. That the Scriptures are written so that you would hear them. That the Church exists so that you may go there and hear God’s Word and receive His gifts there. Baptism was made for you. The Supper was made for you.
Christ’s forgiveness for you this very day is always the point. It always has been. Doesn’t mean that there aren’t other things in the Scriptures that are good and useful and wonderful; there are. But in the Church, it always comes back to the Gospel – to Christ for you. That’s where we live, that’s where we literally have life and peace. Our Ascended Lord is not absent from us, leaving us merely a dead letter full of useful facts – no, He has seen to it that His life-giving Word is proclaimed to you now, indeed to all the world, even until He returns. And that is a wondrous thing.
Rev. Eric Brown is pastor of Trinity Lutheran Church in Herscher, Illinois and the co-host of the HT Gospeled Boldly Podcast.