The Keller Center for Cultural Apologetics helps Christians show unbelievers the truth, goodness, and beauty of the gospel as the only hope that fulfills our deepest longings. Help train Christians to boldly share the good news of Jesus Christ in a way that clearly communicates to this secular age.
Scripture is about a God who reigns, saves, and satisfies through covenant for his glory in Christ. In this seminar Dr. DeRouchie overviews “Scripture’s story of God’s glory in Christ,” tracing the progressive unfolding of God’s kingdom program from Genesis to Revelation, from creation to consummation. Broken into seven easy-to-remember stages that are clarified by simple, cross-cultural images, he unpacks the breathtaking purposes of God that find foundation in the Old Testament and that are fulfilled in Christ and the New Testament.
Each of the 10 sessions is roughly 30 minutes in length, making it very usable for small groups or Sunday school classes. Be sure to download the handout, and you may even want to have handy the first chapter of DeRouchie’s What the Old Testament Authors Really Cared About: A Survey of Jesus’ Bible (Kregel, 2013), downloadable here. Enjoy the journey, for the Bible’s display of God’s plan to glorify his Son through the salvation of the world is absolutely awe-inspiring!
This course will follow the outline below:
Kickoff and Rebellion (Creation, fall, flood) Instrument of Blessing (Patriarchs) Nation Redeemed and Commissioned (Exodus, Sinai, wilderness) Government in the Land (Conquest and kingdoms) Dispersion and Return (Exile and initial restoration) Overlap of the Ages (Christ’s work and the church age) Mission Accomplished (Christ’s work and kingdom consummation)
These images will guide learners as they engage with the Kingdom story of Scripture:
Jason DeRouchie is Professor of Old Testament and Biblical Theology at Bethlehem College & Seminary, where he has served since 2009 with a passion to exalt Christ through whole-Bible theology and to help train the next generation of church leaders how to faithfully interpret and appropriate their Hebrew Old Testaments. Before coming to the Bethlehem College & Seminary, DeRouchie served as an instructor of biblical Greek and Hebrew at Gordon College and Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary in Massachusetts (1997–2000), as an associate pastor in a Southern Baptist church in Indiana (2001–2005), and as Assistant Professor of Old Testament and Hebrew at Northwestern College in Saint Paul, MN (2005–2009). As a specialist in God’s Word, he seeks to approach all of his teaching and scholarship as worship, borrowing Ezra’s resolve (Ezra 7:10 — study > practice > teach) in his approach to academic ministry.
Dr. DeRouchie and his wife Teresa have been married since 1994, and God has blessed them with six children—Mary Jane, Ruth, Isaac, Ezra, Joseph, and Sarah Joy. As a family, they love academic ministry and are delighted to be a part of the Bethlehem College & Seminary community. They are also active in Bethlehem Baptist Church, where DeRouchie is an elder and has taught adult Sunday School since 2006. The family enjoys camping, hiking, canoeing, and moose-watching, and their favorite place to get away is the north shore of Lake Superior.
As we attempt to get a whole-Bible perspective on the Christian Scriptures, we must see up front that they proclaim one message. They are not just books, but they together form a book that addresses God’s kingdom-building plan: God’s kingdom through covenant for God’s glory in Christ. Jesus’ Bible, the Old Testament, provided foundation, and the New Testament in Christ provides fulfillment. The kingdom message of all Scripture is centered on the Messiah––Jesus Christ––and the global redemptive mission he would spark. All redemptive history points to Jesus, and all fulfillment comes from him.
For the Sake of His Name: A Mission to Magnify the Majesty of ChristRuntime: 46 min
A Sermon on Romans 1:1–6
God’s Kingdom Plan in ScriptureRuntime: 24 min
Kickoff and Rebellion (Creation, Fall, & Flood)
Everything God does through the twists and turns of history (his-story) is focused on his glory, ultimately manifest in Christ Jesus. God the Creator is worthy of highest praise, and he uniquely and purposefully shaped humans to image him, displaying his greatness throughout the world. Adam failed to honor God, and the result was an exilic death for him and his posterity, so that all people are now born separated from God and by nature sinners who sin and are under God’s wrath. Yet God promised to reestablish cosmic order and through a male deliverer, the ministry of whom would display great glory through divine grace. This hope existed, however, in a world filled with sin that climaxed in the flood judgment. God preserved humanity through Noah and his family and established the Noahic covenant that ensured a context would continue into which a Savior could rise. Humanity, however, responded to God’s mercy by erecting a Tower of self-exaltation, and the result was more divine judgment.
Runtime: 29 min
Instrument of Blessing (Patriarchs)
Into this fragmented world, God began to set apart a people for himself for the fame of his name. God established a covenant with Abraham that would be worked out in two stages––nationhood (including progeny and property under the Mosaic covenant) and global blessing and fatherhood (realized ultimately through Christ in the new covenant). All these promises would take a miracle to be fulfilled, thus providing the context for understanding the nature of justifying faith. God’s long-range deliverance would come from a ruler in the line of Judah, and in light of such hope, God preserved the children of Jacob/Israel alive in Egypt as they looked ahead to the Promised Land.
Runtime: 33 min
Nation Redeemed and Commissioned (Exodus, Sinai, & Wilderness)
In fulfillment of his promises to the patriarchs, God sustained and multiplied Israel through centuries of Egyptian bondage. For the sake of his name and reputation, the Lord brought plagues on Egypt, redeemed Israel from slavery, and preserved them through the wilderness all the way to Mount Sinai. There, for the display of his holiness before the nations, God established the Mosaic covenant, calling Israel to heed his law through a radical life of love overflowing in obedience. He also promised to remain with his people and provided substitutionary atonement as the means for allowing them to experiencing his presence as sanctifying rather than incinerating. Nevertheless, the nation that God redeemed was stubborn, rebellious, and unbelieving, and God punished them in the wilderness and foretold of their sustained rebellion and ultimate exile after the entered the Promised Land. Nevertheless, he also restated his promise to raise up a deliverer who would exercise international influence, and although he declared the downfall of the Mosaic covenant, he also promised a (new covenant) restoration that would exalt God alone as the giver and gracious sustainer of love for him.
Part 1Runtime: 32 min
Part 2Runtime: 22 min
Government in the Land (Conquest and Kingdoms)
Through the conquest, the Lord exalted himself before the nations as the only true God. He settled Israel in the land, overcoming the enemy giants and fulfilling his promises of nationhood to the patriarchs. The majority of Israel, however, soon forgot the Lord, leading to their ruin. There was a need and hope for God’s reign through an earthly king, but the people wanted a king to replace rather than represent the Lord, so God gave them what they requested. Israel’s rebellion was maintained, and after only three kings the newly united kingdom was divided, ultimately resulting in the destruction and exile of the northern and southern kingdoms. In the midst of Israel’s rise and fall, the Lord graciously renewed his promise of a coming royal deliverer, raised up King David as a foreshadowing of this deliverer, and declared that through him God’s universal kingdom purposes would find fulfillment (= the Davidic covenant). The Savior-King would triumph, establishing a global kingdom of both ethnic Israel and the nations, but he would do so only through substitutionary sacrifice. In all, throughout the conquest and kingdoms, God acted for his glory, exerting great patience with Israel and always preserving a remnant.
Runtime: 35 min
Dispersion and Return (Exile and Initial Restoration)
The Lord cast Israel from the Promised Land because of their failure to live for him. But although he punished his people, he also promised that, in the latter days, he would establish his universal kingdom and that a male royal figure would rule over the world. Into this context, prayers were offered that God would act for the sake of his name and for the magnification of mercy by redeeming his people once again. For the preservation of his reputation, the Lord would sustain Israel through exile, return and remnant to the Land, forgive sin and restore his relationship with them, and enable their witness so that they would represent him rightly in the world. Upon initial restoration, the small group of returnees recognized that so much more fulfillment still awaited––new creation, the Davidic ruler, a reunited people with some from the nations in their midst, the new covenant, internal transformation, God’s presence realized. In contrast, the returnees remained slaves and the curse still lingered. The story awaited a climax and the promises their fulfillment––a fulfillment that would be realized only in the New Testament through Christ.
Runtime: 24 min
Overlap of the Ages (Christ’s Work and the Church Age)
One of the mysterious parts of God’s kingdom program is the way Jesus’s first coming was as a suffering servant and only in his second coming will he come as conquering king. Today we rest in the overlap of the ages, with Christ having delivered us from the present evil age in Adam yet only in a way that lets us taste the powers of the age to come. With respect to the already aspect of the kingdom, at the cross, God counted every believer’s sin to Christ and Christ’s righteousness to every believer, all in order to glorify God as great and gracious and to establish the eternal new covenant. Through Christ’s saving work, God manifest his glory, forgiving believing sinners and making disciples from every nation. This church of Christ magnifies God’s strength through their weakness and suffers for the sake of name, all the while spreading a passion for his fame and trusting the promise of his power and presence. The good news is that the reigning God saves and satisfies believing sinners through Christ’s life, death, and resurrection.
Runtime: 40 min
Mission Accomplished (Christ’s Return and Kingdom Consummation)
God’s mercy, wrath, and power are all directed at making known the riches of his glory. Christ desires that we see and savor all that he is, and his second coming will put God’s glory on full display. Only those who fear and glorify God today will escape divine wrath tomorrow. God’s mission to create an omni-ethnic people of worshippers will reach completion at the consummation of history, when God will destroy evil and when his presence and glory will give light to all the redeemed and Christ will be Lord of all forever.