New Testament Biblical Theology

An Overview of the New Testament as the Inauguration of the Latter-Day New Creation and Kingdom Anticipated in the Old Testament

Curated from a lecture series by Gregory K. Beale

Course Introduction

New Testament Biblical Theology

“Jesus’s life, trials, death for sinners, and especially resurrection by the Spirit have launched the fulfillment of the eschatological already-not yet new-creational reign, bestowed by grace through faith and resulting in worldwide commission to the faithful to advance this new-creational reign and resulting in judgment for the unbelieving, unto the triune God’s glory.”

G. K. Beale,  A New Testament Biblical Theology, 958.

Introductory Lecture

This session provides a brief overview of the themes, method, and goals of this course. Key themes include inaugurated eschatology, the kingdom of God, and the new creation. The central method will be through consideration of the way the New Testament writers read the Old Testament in light of eschatology and the fulfillment of God’s new covenant promises. It also includes a discussion of key supplemental readings to help with this course.

  • IntroductionRuntime: 19 min

About Dr. Gregory K. Beale

Rev. Dr. Gregory K. Beale (PhD, Cambridge) holds the J. Gresham Machen Chair of New Testament and is professor of New Testament and biblical theology at Westminster Theological Seminary.

Dr. Beale’s academic interests include the New Testament’s use of the Old Testament, the book of Revelation, the biblical-theological theme of temple as the dwelling place of God, and the topic of inerrancy, among others. For those who are new to Dr. Beale’s writing and teaching on these interests, he recommends several resources as places to start. On the New Testament’s use of the Old Testament, he would suggest starting with his course A New Testament Biblical Theology, available free online from Westminster, or reading A New Testament Biblical Theology: The Unfolding of the Old Testament in the New. On Revelation, he would recommend his commentary Book of Revelation (New International Greek Text Commentary) or the newly-released Revelation: A Shorter Commentary. On the biblical-theological use of temple, consider “Eden, the Temple, and the Church’s Mission in the New Creation,” or his book on the topic. On inerrancy, he would suggest starting with The Right Doctrine from the Wrong Text?, or his article “Can the Bible be Completely Inspired by God and Yet Still Contain Errors?”.

Supplemental Reading List for the Course
  • Stephen G. Dempster, Dominion and Dynasty: A Theology of the Hebrew Bible. New Studies in Biblical Theology. Downer’s Grove: IVP Academic, 2003.
  • Peter J. Gentry and Stephen J. Wellum. Kingdom through Covenant: A Biblical-Theological Understanding of the Covenants. Wheaton: Crossway, 2012.
  • Graeme Goldsworthy, According to Plan: The Unfolding Revelation of God in the Bible. Downer’s Grove: IVP Academic, 2002.
  • Graeme Goldsworthy, The Goldsworthy Trilogy: Gospel and Kingdom, Gospel and Wisdom, The Gospel in Revelation. Eugene, Ore.: Paternoster/Wipf & Stock, 2001.
  • Michael Lawrence, Biblical Theology in the Life of the Church: A Guide for Ministry. Wheaton: Crossway, 2010.
  • Thomas R. Schreiner, Covenant and God’s Purpose for the World. Short Studies in Biblical Theology. Wheaton: Crossway, 2017.
  • Thomas R. Schreiner, New Testament Theology: Magnifying God in Christ. Grand Rapids: Baker Academic, 2008.
  • Frank S.Theilman,  Theology of the New Testament: A Canonical and Synthetic Approach. Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 2005.
  • N. T. Wright, The Climax of the Covenant: Christ and the Law in Pauline Theology. London: T&T Clark, 1991.
  • N. T. Wright, The New Testament and the People of God. Volume 1 of Christians Origins and the Question of God. Minneapolis: Fortress, 1992.
  • N. T. Wright, Jesus and the Victory of God. Volume 2 of Christians Origins and the Question of God. Minneapolis: Fortress, 1996. 

Additional Biblical Theology Reading

Reading to see the overall story of the Bible:

For a focus on the Old Testament, see (ordered by increasing levels of difficulty):

For a focus on the New Testament, see:

For a whole-Bible theology books, see:

For special attention to seeing Christ in the Old Testament, note in particular:

Inaugurated Eschatology

  • Part 1Runtime: 44 min

    This provides an overview of eschatology in the OT, specifically the phrase "latter days." The OT looks forward to the day when some Gentiles will both be judged and some included in the eschatological people of God. It is also looks speaks of coming apostasy within the covenant community before the final and decisive restoration of the creation.

  • Part 2Runtime: 67 min

    This lecture is an introduction to the application of the "latter days" concept and inaugurated eschatology in the NT. In order to properly understand the fulfillment of OT promises, we must recognize that Jesus, as the true Israel, is the primary recipient of God's end-of-time promises. The coming of the Messiah, the establishment of the new temple, and the coming of the anti-Christ, Beale argues, were all launched in the first century but have a culminating fulfillment yet to come.

  • Part 3Runtime: 73 min

    This section begins with an overview of the "latter day" concept in Paul's letters. After his encounter with Jesus on the road to Damascus, Paul's entire outlook was "eschatologically charged." In summary, the New Testament affirms that the Messiah has come, God and the Davidic king are reigning now, the tribulation has begun, the restoration of Israel started with the resurrection of Jesus so that the end time promises of the new creation, the giving of the Spirit, the temple, and resurrection are underway. The lecture ends with an introduction to the present reality of the Great Tribulation.

  • Part 4Runtime: 79 min

    This lecture continues the practical application of the present reality of the Great Tribulation. In short, our battles against sin are not simply private struggles but instead are a part of the great cosmic conflict at the end of the ages. The second part of this section highlights the role of the Son of Man in Daniel 7, who overcomes the beasts to win the kingdom. Beale argues that those who are united to the Son of Man share this kingdom; those who do not make decisions reflecting God and his Word we are identifying with the beasts.

  • Part 5Runtime: 33 min

    This section wraps up the discussion of Daniel 7, continuing to make practical application. Beale then considers the makes suffering in the NT different from suffering in the OT. Drawing a parallel to the kingdom of God, there is an escalation and intensification of suffering in the last days.

  1. The Use of the Term “Latter Days” in the Old Testament
    1. Some references to the “latter days”
      1. Genesis 49:1 – Jacob’s prophecy concerning the futures
      2. Numbers 24:14 – Balaam’s prophecy
      3. Isaiah 2:2 – Some Gentiles submit to God
      4. Ezekiel 38:16 – Israel oppressed; Spirit given
      5. Hosea 3:4-5 – Return from exile
      6. Daniel 2:28 – Empires crumble; Divine kingdom set up
      7. Daniel 10:14 – Coming of antichrist; persecution
      8. Daniel 12:2 – Resurrection
  2. In the OT “latter days” refer to the following:
    1. A messianic figure who will subdue Israel’s enemies.
    2. A time when some gentiles will submit to God
    3. Future time of God’s reign on earth
    4. Israel’s restoration from exile (Hosea 3; Ezekiel 38)
    5. Covenant community compromised/remnant faithful
    6. Time of the Spirit/end-time Temple (Ezekiel 38)
    7. Resurrection and new creation (Daniel 12:2)
  3. The Use of the Term “Latter Days” in the New Testament
    1. Outside of Paul
      1. Joel 2:28 and Acts 2:17
      2. Hebrews 1:2
      3. 1 Peter 1:20-21
      4. 1 John 2:18
      5. Jude 17-23
      6. James 5:3
  4. The Use of the Term “Latter Days” in the New Testament Which Appear to Refer Exclusively to the Future
    1. Outside of Paul
      1. 2 Peter 3:2-3
      2. John 6:39-40, 44, 54
      3. John 11:24
      4. John 12:48
      5. 1 Peter 1:5, 20
    2. The Use of the Term “Latter Days” in Paul’s Letters
      1. 1 Corinthians 10:11
      2. Galatians 4:4-7
      3. Ephesians 1:9-10, 20
      4. 1 Timothy 4:1
  5. Conclusion
    1. The NT uses end time phraseology to connote the following:
      1. The promised Messiah has come at last.
      2. The promised reign of God, together with a Davidic king, has begun. The Enemy has been defeated.
      3. The time of tribulation with deception, false teaching, and persecution has begun.
      4. The time of Israel’s restoration has begun, evidenced by the resurrection of Jesus and the pouring out of the Spirit.
      5. The end-time coming of the Spirit, the Temple, and the resurrection.
    2. NT theology is essentially end-time theology. The better we understand that the end times have begun and that they’re going on, the better we’re going to understand other doctrines.
    3. Most of the inaugurated references to the “latter days” are in the plural, while the singular references tend to refer to the consummated form of the latter days.


The “Great Tribulation” and the Eschatological Character of Suffering: The Inaugurated End-Time Tribulation as an Ironic Aspect of the Beginning Kingdom

  1. Daniel 2:28 and 10:14 Refer to the Latter Days
  2. The Use of “Hour” in Daniel 8-12 and 1 John 2:18
    1. See Jesus’ statements in Matthew 24, Mark 13, and Luke 21
    2. Daniel 8-12 as background for “last hour” in 1 John
      1. The time of the enemy’s deception
      2. The time of the enemy’s persecution of the saints
      3. Opposition to God (covenantal disloyalty)
      4. Judgment of the enemy
      5. Resurrection of the saints

Review Questions
When do the "latter days" described in the Old Testament begin?

While the New Testament sees a future fulfillment yet to come, the latter days have begun now with the resurrection and reign of Jesus as the Davidic king.

When will the Great Tribulation begin?

There is a sense in which the tribulation began with the death of the Messiah, Jesus. However, there will also be a final culmination of this period at the end of history.

Biblical Theology of the Gospels

  • Part 1Runtime: 46 min

    This section serves an introduction to a biblical theology of the Gospels. Moving back into Genesis, Beale traces the failures of Adam and Eve, Noah, and Israel in the commission that God gave to them. These failures all point forward to the life of Jesus as framed in the Gospels. Each of the Gospels include significant new creational themes and Matthew's Gospel in particular casts Jesus as the new and better Israel.

  • Part 2Runtime: 66 min

    This lecture continues to trace Jesus’ recapitulation of Israel’s history in the Gospel of Matthew. It considers his baptism and subsequent temptation a parallel to Israel passing through the waters and entering the wilderness. However, in light of Jesus’ victory where Adam, Noah, and Israel failed, his ministry launches the final new creation. His parables are then acted out end-time parables and the Lord’s Prayer is an end-time prayer.

  • Part 3Runtime: 79 min

    This section continues to focus on the Gospel of Matthew as the primary lens for a biblical theology of the Gospels. By considering the way that Matthew recapitulates the first creation and subsequent "new creations" (the flood, the exodus, and the return from exile), Beale continues to argue that Jesus embodies the history of God's people and is their perfect representative. This is followed by an excursus on Jesus as son of God and son of man. The combination of these roles in Jesus demonstrate both his ontological status as divine who is also the perfect representative of God's human people.

  • Part 4Runtime: 63 min

    This lecture continues to focus on a biblical theology of the Gospels through the lens of Matthew. The theme of Jesus' role as the Son of God and the Son of Man takes on increasing importance as the kingdom is established. Beale also establishes Jesus' healings indicate that "the kingdom is near" refers to the present reality of the kingdom, not an exclusively future kingdom. Finally, he considers the role of the Sabbath in this time of eschatological fulfillment.

  • Part 5Runtime: 67 min

    In this section Beale continues to demonstrate the present reality of the kingdom of God in the Gospels, particularly Matthew, through Jesus' victory over demons and unclean spiritual powers. This is further evidence of Jesus' new creational work and his reconstitution of the people God. He then considers Jesus' parables as the way that Jesus introduces his unexpected kingdom. Finally, Beale argues that the blasphemy of the Holy Spirit is a final and decisive rejection of Jesus as Israel's Messiah and the one who gives the Spirit.

  • Part 6Runtime: 82 min

    The first part of this lecture is a short biblical theology of idolatry. Beale demonstrates how Israel's idolatry was transformed but not eradicated in the New Testament. Idol worshippers become like those things they worship: "You resemble what you revere, for restoration or ruin." He then considers the confession of Peter as a prelude to the kingdom coming and the key marks of faith, repentance, and forgiveness for citizens of God's kingdom. The lecture concludes with a consideration of divorce and remarriage in the light of the presence of the new creation.


Introduction: Overview of biblical theology leading up to Jesus

  1. The first creation
  2. The fall of mankind into sin
  3. The separation of the seed of the woman and the seed of the serpent
  4. Movement toward a new heaven and a new earth recapitulation through redemptive history

Lecture: Biblical Theology of the Gospels

  1. New Creation as Found in the Genealogies of the Gospels
    1. The genealogy begins with “biblos genesos.”
    2. Matthew is narrating the record of the new age, the new creation, launched by the coming, death, and resurrection of Jesus Christ.
    3. Jesus is called Messiah because he is fulfilling the great Messianic prophecies.
    4. Mention of Abraham is crucial because of the Gentile thread woven through the Genealogy.
    5. The symbolic value of the “seven” pattern.
    6. The significance of Luke’s genealogy.
    7. Mark 1:1 states “the beginning of the Gospel of Jesus Christ.”
    8. Note the new creation imagery in John 1
  2. Jesus Sums Up Israel in Himself
    1. Jesus comes to do what Israel should have done.
    2. Jesus begins to reconstitute Israel.
    3. Jesus conducts warfare against Satan and his demons.
  3. The Theological Significance of John the Baptist and Jesus’ Baptism
    1. John the Baptist fulfills the first prophetic announcement of Israel’s restoration in Isaiah 40-66.
    2. Just as Israel had to go through the sea at the Exodus to enter the promised land, and just as the second generation had to do the same thing at the Jordan as a miniature second Exodus, so again, now that Israel’s restoration is at hand through Jesus, true Israelites must again identify with the water and the Jordan in order to begin to experience true restoration.
  4. The Redemptive Historical Significance of Jesus’ Temptation in the Wilderness.
    1. The “forty days and forty nights” echo Israel’s forty years in the wilderness.
    2. Jesus succeeds in facing the same temptations to which Israel succumbed.
    3. The defeat of the devil in the wilderness was Jesus’ first act of conquering the “Canaanites in the promised land” as true Israel, in this case the devil was the ultimate satanic prince of the Canaanites and all wicked nations.
    4. After defeating the Devil in the Promised Land, Jesus again is seen as beginning to further fulfill Isaiah’s promises of Israel’s restoration.
  5. Jesus as a Latter-Day New Moses Who Leads Israel Back to God
    1. One of the first indications of this is the “Sermon of the Mount.”
    2. Matthew 7:24-27 may be referring to Jesus’ re-establishment of the temple in himself as the “rock.”
  6. Jesus’ Healings Represent the Restoration of Israel and a Reversal of the Curses of the Fall.
  7. Jesus as the Son Of Man (God’s Eschatological Adamic Vice-Regent).
    1. The “Son of Man” is equal to the “Son of God.”
    2. With the phrase “Son of Man,” Jesus intended to reveal himself to be the divine figure of Daniel 7 who was the inclusive representative and head of the plural sons of God, that is, Israel, true humanity.
    3. Paul on the Damascus road sees the man Jesus as the exalted Son of Man and Paul describes him as “Son of God” because that was part of the dual intention of Daniel 7:13.
  8. Jesus’ Healings Continue to Indicate His Restoration of Creation and of Israel, the Corporate Adam
    1. Healings were acted out parables of Jesus’ mission to spiritually heal, i.e. to forgive.
    2. Jesus continues to re-establish the tribes of Israel.
    3. After re-establishing the tribes, Jesus begins to send them out to begin the mission to the ends of the earth, beginning with Israel first.
  9. John the Baptist and his Relationship to the Redemptive-Historical Ministry of Jesus.
    1. Jesus has come to begin to fulfill the great prophecies of Israel’s restoration from Babylon.
    2. John the Baptist was the fulfillment of the prophecy that Elijah would come again in the end times.
  10. Jesus Begins to Announce Coming Judgment on Israel.
    1. This is a development of John the Baptist’s earlier condemnatory statements about the leaders of Israel in Matthew 3:7-12.
    2. Nevertheless, Jesus offers the “rest” promised by the OT.
  11. Jesus Redefines What a True Israelite Is.
    1. Because Jesus is not only restoring Israel but also is restoring all of creation, including gentiles, the true people of God cannot any longer be marked out by certain nationalistic badges which sometimes distinguish nations from one another.
  12. Jesus Continues to Heal in Fulfillment of Isaiah’s Prophecy of the One Who Would Restore Israel.
    1. He has come of the heal the fragmented world, not merely of Israel, but also of the Gentiles.
    2. Israel’s religious rulers reject Jesus as the one who is to restore Israel to her God.
  13. The Parables Indicate the Rejection of National Israel as the People of God and Indicate How the Eschatological Kingdom is Beginning in the Ministry of Jesus.
  14. Jesus is “Greater Than John the Baptist.”
  15. The Theology of the Bread Miracle
  16. After Crossing the Sea, Jesus’ Miraculous Healings Again Demonstrate that He has Come to Restore Creation from the Curse of the Fall and to Restore True Israel from the Covenant Curses Of The Exile.
  17. Israel’s Idolatry with Respect to The Law Will Bring a Curse On Them, Which Will Lead to the Salvation Of The Gentiles.
    1. Matthew 13 relates back to Isaiah 6.
    2. Israel of Jesus’ day was idolatrous because she had worshipped tradition in place of God and his word.
    3. Therefore, Matthew 15 and other related texts show that Jesus’ application of Isaiah 6:9-10 to his Israelite contemporaries indicated that what had happened in Isaiah’s day was happening again; Israel was being judged for her idolatry, committing herself to something else besides God.
  18. Jesus Warns the Disciples Not to Evaluate Him by The Worldly Standards of the Pharisees but by a Christocentric Lens.
  19. Therefore, the Disciples Should Perceive that Jesus is the “Son Of Man” and the “Son Of God”.
  20. The Disciples Should Perceive How Jesus is Going to Accomplish Ironically His Mission as “Son of Man” and as “Son of God”.
  21. John the Baptist as Fulfilling the Prophecy of Elijah’s Promised Coming to Restore “All Things” and His Death as the Precursor to Jesus the Messiah’s Coming to Do the Same and to Die.
  22. Jesus Continues to Conquer the Promised Land with His Newly Organized Israelite Army.
  23. Entrance (and Status) into the Inaugurated Kingdom
  24. Two Chief Characteristics of True Membership in the Inaugurated Kingdom: Repentance Over Sin and Offering Forgiveness
  25. The Pharisee’s Testing Question About Marriage and the Inbreaking New Creation
  26. The Rich Young Ruler and Entrance into Eternal Life and Kingdom of Heaven
  27. Status in the Kingdom is Bestowed by Pure Divine Grace.
  28. Jesus Continues to Heal in Continuing to Restore Israel.
  29. Jesus Presents Himself as a Latter King David on Entering Jerusalem on a Donkey.
  30. Jesus Announces Formal Judgment on Israel.
  31. The Religious Leaders Demonstrate their Unbelieving and Apostate Attitude, for which They Deserve Judgment, By Trying to “Trap” Christ into Making a Heretical Statement by Which They Could Condemn Him as a False Teacher.
  32. Jesus Pronounces on The Scribes and Pharisees Judgmental Woes for their Unbelief and Willful Disobedience; He Announces That the End of National Israel as God’s People Has Come.

Review Question
What do we mean when we say that Jesus is "True Israel?"

Jesus sums up everything that Israel was intended to do and be, so that he fulfills God’s covenant purposes for his people and subsequently he and all who are united to him receive all of God’s covenant promises for his people.

A Redemptive-Historical Perspective of the Temple

  • Part 1Runtime: 84 min

    This lecture traces the temple theme throughout the Bible. Beale argues that the Garden of Eden was the first temple, noting unique God's presence and other distinctive parallels with the later temple in Israel. Building on this, he observes that Noah's ark, Israel's temple, and the final temple in heaven share similar characteristics. The presence of God is currently uniquely present in the church, which is now the dwelling place of God's presence until the new creation comes in its fullness.

  • Part 2Runtime: 57 min

    This section compares and contrasts different proposals for the center of biblical theology. Beale's proposal is that the OT is the story of God who progressively and teleologically reestablishes his new creational rule over people by his Word and Spirit through promise, covenant, and judgment for God's glory. The NT adds that this end time rule is established by God's Word, Son, and Spirit through the already and not-yet fulfillment of promise, covenant, and judgment at Christ's death and resurrection for God's glory.

  1. Reasons Why the Garden of Eden was the First Temple.
    1. It was a unique place of God’s presence.
    2. Genesis 2:15
    3. The tree of life was probably the model for the lampstand placed directly outside the holy of holies in Israel’s temple.
    4. Israel’s later temple had wood carvings in the form of floral arrangements.
    5. Not only was Adam to guard this sanctuary, but he was to subdue the earth according to Genesis 1:28.
  2. Noah’s Ark Was the Temple of God’s Presence in the Second Creation.
    1. The word for Noah’s ark, not in Hebrew but in Greek, is the word that’s used in the Greek OT for the ark of the covenant in Israel.
    2. Noah’s ark had three levels, just as the later temple in Israel had three distinct parts.
    3. Detailed architectural plans (Ezekiel 40-48; Revelation 21).
    4. The ark was where God’s unique presence was during the flood.
    5. Noah was a priest.
  3. The Features of Israel’s Temple Resemble God’s Temple in Heaven.
    1. The statuette cherubim around the Ark of the Covenant reflect the real cherubim who stand guard around God’s throne.
    2. The curtains that separate the holy of holies from the holy place are woven with blue thread.
    3. The curtains separating the holy of holies had needlework on it of the stars representing the heavens.
    4. The temple was divided into three levels.
  4. Christ and His Followers are a Temple in the New Creation of the New Exodus Out of Sin.
    1. Christ is the temple toward which all earlier temples looked and which they anticipated.
    2. Not only is Christ the temple but the church is also the temple.


Proposed Centers for Biblical Theology

  1. Different Approaches and Methods for Doing Biblical Theology
    1. Some possible centers for the Old Testament:
      1. God
      2. Israel
      3. God and Israel
      4. Election
      5. Promise
      6. Covenant
      7. Kingdom
      8. Creation
      9. Communion with God
      10. Revelation
  2. The Old Testament is the Story of the God who Progressively and Teleologically Reestablishes His New Creational Rule Over People by His Word and Spirit through Promise, Covenant, and Judgment unto God’s Glory.
    1. Some possible centers for the New Testament:
      1. Anthropology
      2. Salvation History
      3. Covenant
      4. Love
      5. Christology
      6. Justification by Faith
  3. The New Testament is The Story Of The Beginning End Time Rule in a New Creation Over People by God’s Word, Son, and Spirit through Already and Not Yet Fulfillment Of Promise, Covenant, and Judgment at Christ’s Death and Resurrection for God’s Glory.
  4. Biblical Theology is Nothing Else than the Exhibition of the Organic Progress of Supernatural Revelation [Inbreaking New Creation] in its Historic Continuity and Multiformity.

Review Question
What is the purpose of the temple in the Bible?

The temple is the place where God dwells with his people. Therefore, Eden, the ark, the tabernacle, and temple all point to Jesus himself, who is the very presence of God embodied. As he dwells with his church, it then becomes the current manifestation of the temple.

The Damascus Road Resurrection Christophany

  • Part 1Runtime: 75 min

    Building on the center of biblical theology in the previous lecture, Beale argues in this section that Paul’s vision of Christ on the Damascus Road was paradigmatic for the rest of his ministry. Paul then stands in the line of the OT prophets who received the revelation of the Lord and Jesus is the Lord himself bringing the covenant promises to fulfilment through his end-time reign. Because of this fulfillment, all who are in Christ share this reign.

  • Part 2Runtime: 69 min

    In this lecture, Beale continues to address the fundamental way that the Damascus Road Christophany shaped Paul’s life and ministry. At the conversion/call, Paul received a commission that echoes OT prophetic commission. Beale argues that there are allusions to this event throughout Paul’s remaining ministry. The lecture ends with an introduction to Paul’s theology of the image of God, which Beale reads through the lens of subduing and ruling.

  1. Paul Experienced the New Creational Kingdom.
    1. This is evident from the Christophany as a resurrection appearance, which marked the beginning of the last days.
    2. The presence of the idea of resurrection in Judaism.
    3. NT evidence on resurrection as New Creation.
  2. The Damascus Road Christophany is the End Times Center of Paul’s Thought.
  3. The Use of the Old Testament in Acts 26.
    1. Luke wants to portray Christ as speaking as the Lord of the OT who gave prophets their vocations.
    2. Jesus is the divine commissioner of the OT.
    3. Paul’s prophetic function was to preach salvation and judgment.
  4. The Reflection of the OT Theophanic Visions in the Three Damascus Reports.
    1. The use of the double vocative i.e. Moses Moses, Abraham Abraham etc.
    2. The question or response of the man who says “here I am.”
    3. The self-presentation of the one appearing, who was God.
    4. The mission given to the person from God.
    5. This pattern may be observed in Genesis 31, 46:2; Exodus 3; 1 Samuel 3.
  5. The Significance of Heaven in the Damascus Narratives
    1. The “cloud of heaven” in Acts 1:9 is an allusion back to Daniel 7:13.
    2. The resurrection of Christ and pouring out of the Holy Spirit is an allusion back to Joel 2:28.
    3. The church is associated with Christ in his reign from Heaven.
  6. Paul at the Damascus Road was Made an End-Time Prophet.
    1. Paul was an apocalyptist—one who has experienced the open heaven and is writing about the unveiled heaven.


The Damascus Road Christophany and Paul’s Conversion/Call

  1. The Vision of the Risen Christ as the Only Explanation for Paul’s Conversion
    1. There is debate as to whether this is a “conversion” or a “call.”
    2. Christ appeared to Paul and Paul saw him.
    3. This has application to nominal Christians today. Paul thought that he was a true believer, who was doing God’s work, when it fact he was not.
  2. The Damascus Christophany as Paul’s Apostolic Commission.
    1. Not only was Paul converted at this event, but he was also given a prophetic apostolic commission.
    2. The Damascus Christophany constituted both Paul’s regenerative understanding of the gospel and his apostolic commission.
  3. The Damascus Road Christophany Influenced the Whole of Paul’s Theological Thinking.
    1. There are at least four passages that reflect this experience: 1 Corinthians 9:1, 15:8-10; Galatians 1:13-17; 1 Timothy 1.
    2. Another passage that alludes to Paul’s conversion is 2 Corinthians 4:6.
    3. After the Damascus Road experience Paul no longer evaluated Christ “according to the flesh.”
    4. Paul describes unbelieving Israel in Rom 10 in terms of the unbelief that he had prior to the Damascus Road experience.

Review Question
Was Paul's encounter with Jesus a conversion or a call?

When Paul met Jesus on the Damascus Road, he was both converted from his wrong understanding of the Old Testament and the Messiah and called to proclaim the good news of God’s new creational reign to the Gentiles.

The Eschatological Nature of Paul's Anthropology and Relationship of New Creation to Reconciliation

  • Part 1Runtime: 69 min

    This section continues to explain the nature of the image of God, its meaning, its fulfillment in Christ, and the subsequent ability of believers to reflect God's image because they are united to Christ. The second part of the lecture interacts with early Jewish perspectives through the work of Seyoon Kim to argue that the image of God is closely connected to Adam's representation of the human race.

  • Part 2Runtime: 80 min

    The section continues to trace the theme of new creation, demonstrating the close relationship between new creation and the reconciliation of God, his people, and his creation. Special attention is given to the fruit of the Spirit as the end time, new-creational gift of God to his people, and the understanding of new creation as being set apart to the new creation.

  1. The Significance of the Image of God in Theology
    1. Genesis 1 and 2 provide a pattern of subduing and ruling.
    2. The same pattern may be observed in Hebrews 1.
  2. The Practical Exhortation from the Image of God
    1. Man is now able to fulfill the divine command of Genesis 1:28 by being in Christ.
    2. The purpose of the Christian is to be conformed to the image of Christ (Rom 8:29; 1 Cor 15:49; 2 Cor 3:18, 4:4; Eph 4:24; Col 3:10).
    3. Christians subdue and rule in Christ by believing and overcoming through suffering (Rom 8; 2 Cor 10:3f. 13:4; Phil 3:10f.).
  3. The Image of God according to Seyoon Kim
    1. The eschatological hopes of the OT and Judaism
    2. The OT’s and Judaism’s tendency to narrate its history in terms of the actions of a few representative individuals and the relation of this to Jewish eschatology.
    3. Important for the present purposes is that some Rabbis could say that Adam lost the divine image through his fall.
    4. Key corporate, federal representatives are seen as either losing or restoring the image for man.
  4. The Relationship Between the Latter Day New Creation and Reconciliation
    1. Texts which are crucial to understand the relationship between reconciliation and eschatology.
      1. Colossians 1:15-20
      2. Romans 5
      3. Romans 11
      4. Galatians 6
      5. Ephesians 2:13f.
      6. 2 Corinthians 5:15-17
  5. The Relationship between Sanctification and New Creation

Sanctification, Justification, and the Relationship of Christ to the Law

  • Part 1Runtime: 64 min

    Part 1: After summarizing and concluding the previous discussion on sanctification and the new creation, this lecture begins considers the role of the law in light of the new creation and its current application to the church. The law is filtered through Christ, and its stipulations that divide Jew from Gentile are no longer in force.

  • Part 2Runtime: 66 min

    Part 2: This lecture concludes the discussion of the role of the law in the light of the new creation. Beale then begins to considers the connection between justification and the new creation. Justification is a declaration of righteousness applied by grace and accomplished through redemption and propitiation in order to demonstrate God's righteousness, and this redemption is synonymous with the inauguration of the new creation.

  1. A Summary of Sanctification as It Relates to New Creation
    1. Sanctification is the process of being set apart from the old creation to the new.
    2. The indicative for those who are in the new creation precedes the imperative of how they are expected to live.
    3. The “old man” and “new man” correspond to the old creation and the new creation.
    4. There are at least three reasons why Christians sin.
      1. The influence of the devil and his demons
      2. The influence of the fallen world
      3. The fallen bodies of believers
    5. Although the good works of a Christian do not cause his or her salvation, they do indeed validate the authenticity of that salvation.
    6. Although Christians are to be assured that the one in whom God works salvation will ultimately be saved, it is appropriate for Christians, when they are in patterns of sin, to question whether they are truly among God’s people.
    7. The imperative nature of God’s commands must be understood in the context of the indicative.
  2. The Law as an Eschatological Doctrine
    1. There are some instances where Paul looks unfavorably upon the law.
    2. On other occasions the law is regarded as positive.
    3. The apparent contradiction may be accounted for by the overlapping of the ages, the old creation and the new creation.
    4. While the law once centered on ethnic distinctions, the new covenant centers on Christ. Thus, ethnic laws do not apply to the church.
  3. Justification by Faith and New Creation
    1. Paul believed that he was guided by the law in persecuting Christians who appeared to him to be apostate.
    2. Paul understood justification from the Damascus road revelation.
    3. Paul realized on the Damascus road that justification was by grace alone.
    4. He also realized on the Damascus road that justification was through faith alone.
    5. A fourth distinction that Paul realized on the Damascus road was that justification was not only for Jews, but also for gentiles.
  4. The Relation of Eschatology to Justification
    1. Justification is a declaration of righteousness applied by grace and accomplished through redemption and propitiation in order to demonstrate God’s righteousness.
    2. The end-time judgment has been pushed back to the cross in Christ.
    3. The end-time righteousness has been declared for us in Christ.
    4. The resurrection of Christ is crucial to understanding justification (Rom. 4:24-25).
  5. Concluding Comments on Justification
    1. The sinless life of Christ worked out a perfect righteousness for his people.
    2. In some cases the term “sanctification” is used in a similar way as justification.
    3. Because we are not a consummated new creation, but still in progress, no “good work” can be considered perfect (free from sin).
    4. The battle is not between the “old man” and the “new man,” but between Satan, the world, our physical bodies, and indwelling sin.

Review Question
How should we interpret and apply the law after the coming of the Messiah?

Beale argues that the Messiah is the filter for all of the stipulations of the law that divide according to the ethnicity.

The Eschatological Conception of the Church

  • Part 1Runtime: 60 min

    This section concludes the previous discussion on the relationship between justification and the new creation, including an argument that a right understanding of this relationship helps us better understanding sanctification. It also helps us better understand Paul's use of "old man" and the "new man" as a reference to eschatological realities. Therefore, our battle is not between the old man and the new man but instead between the old fallen creation and its affects and the new creation. The lecture concludes by introducing a discussion of the church and Israel.

  • Part 2Runtime: 73 min

    This lecture continues the discussion Part 2: This lecture continues the discussion between Israel and the Church. In a survey of the Gospels and Paul's letters, Beale argues that the Abrahamic promises are fulfilled in the new community of the new creation, the Church. The nation Israel failed to fulfill her corporate priesthood by representing God to the nations; this role is fulfilled in Christ and his Church. Moreover, the gift of the Holy Spirit is the guarantee or down payment of Israel's end-time promises.

  1. The Community of the New Creation
    1. Jesus and, consequently, the Church is true Israel.
    2. The Church as the new Israel; a brief survey from the gospels.
    3. The Church as new Israel; the view of Paul.
    4. The Church, as the new Israel, relates to eschatology.
  2. The Relationship of Eschatology to True Israel, the Church
    1. Gentiles may become true Israel by virtue of being united with Christ.
    2. The NT presents promises of the OT as being fulfilled unexpectedly.
    3. Israelite prophecies of restoration are applied to the Church.
    4. The concept of exile is applied to the Church.

The Eschatological Role of the Holy Spirit

  • Part 1Runtime: 63 min

    This lecture continues the discussion of the end-time gift of the Holy Spirit in Ephesians 3. The mystery here is a reference to the role of the Gentiles as full-fledged people of God who have the Spirit without becoming citizens of Israel. Beale gives extended attention to debated NT texts that indicate the role of the Gentiles as members of God's new covenant community. In particular, he argues that Romans 11:26 refers to the salvation of Jews and Gentiles together (and not a future salvation of ethnic Israel). He then begins to discuss the eschatological role of the Holy Spirit.

  • Part 2Runtime: 72 min

    Part 2: This section continues the discussion of the role of the Spirit in the new creation, giving attention to the fulfillment of Joel 2 in Acts 2 as a demonstration of this reality. The lecture concludes with a reflection on the role of marriage as a picture of the relationship between Christ and the Church, followed by brief comments on baptism and the Sabbath in light of the new creation.

  1. The Holy Spirit as The Equipper of the Messiah
  2. The Spirit was also to be the Eschatological Transformer of Israel
  3. The Spirit and the NT
  4. The Use of Joel 2 on Acts
    1. When God executes judgment upon a nation, it is described in terms of cosmic conflagration imagery.
    2. We get “little Pentecosts” that occur later.


The Eschatological Dimension of Marriage

  1. Human Marriage as a Reflection of the Inaugurated New Creation Marriage of Christ and the Church
  2. Christ as the new Adam of the new creation


Concluding Comments

  1. Like Circumcision, Baptism is an Oath Sign which Signifies Salvation as through Water for the One who Believes and Death as in Drowning on the Case of One Who Does Not Believe.
  2. We Celebrate Our Sabbath Rest on Sunday, Not on Saturday, because it was on Sunday That Christ in His Resurrection Began to Experience the New Creation and Eternal Sabbath Rest as the Last Adam.