Over the last three weeks in our Sunday gatherings, we’ve been studying the portion of the Whole Story of the Bible known as “The Wisdom of Israel.” It’s important to remember how we’ve been thinking about wisdom as we do so. Namely, wisdom is applied skill and competence. It is an understanding that Yahweh himself has hardwired wisdom into all of creation and all of humanity (Proverbs 8:22-31). It is the inner logic for how everything works, and the ‘secret code’ to discovering a good life. Therefore, in the words of the Bible Project,
The wisdom books of the Old Testament offer three different [but complementary] perspectives on how to live well in God’s good world. They reveal the collected wisdom of generations of godly people, and invite us to consider the complexity and simplicity of living wisely.
The three books they are referring to are Job, Ecclesiastes, and Proverbs, which we’ve now completed as the first part of our exploration of wisdom. But there are two books yet to go, which make up the lyrical wisdom of the Old Testament—Psalms and the Song of Songs.
Now, why should you care about these books? Because we all want to live a good life. We all want our lives to mean something, and to be spent well for a greater purpose. And we all desire peace, happiness, contentment, and joy as we invest the precious moments of our living that God has provided. What we’ve been discovering is that wisdom is the path to a good life.
So, if you’d like to study further—and I hope you do—I recommend you listen to this latest installment in The Whole Story, my sermon on Ecclesiastes. In particular, the introduction provides a metaphor to understand how Job, Proverbs, and Ecclesiastes work together and balance each other.
Then, head on over to The Bible Project to watch their Wisdom Series on these three books. Just click on the image below to open yourself up to three beautifully done short films that bring clarity to this foundational part of the Scriptures, as well as a wealth of additional resources.
If you’d like to study Ecclesiastes in particular, you can peruse additional study resources here.
I’d like to remind you that this coming Sunday we will be making our way into Psalms. If you’ve been following along with the Read Scripture app, you’ve already read through Psalms once this year, so I’m not asking you to read all 150 chapters in preparation! Rather, my plan is to spend a little time with an overview of the Psalter, and then dive into Psalm 34 as an example for how to understand and apply this lyrical wisdom to our lives. If you’d like to prepare, check out the Bible Project page on the Psalms.
Finally, if you haven’t already, you should download thenew Calvary app. It is the fastest way to access all of these sermons and articles. And, if you’ve been blessed by the ministry of Calvary, it also provides an easy way to give electronically right in the app. It is the generous support of people like you that make this content available, that you might mature as a disciple of Jesus Christ.
I had a class on preaching once, many years ago, from a pastor and a professor. And here is what he argued was the key question the preacher must ask of every text of Scripture:
2 Corinthians and The Whole Story
The reason that we began the Whole Story sermon series in January of last year was for the simple reason that we wanted to inspire you to read the Bible.
In the unsearchable counsel of God's will for the world, he has so designed that salvation will come through the church, that body of people gathered by the power of his Holy Spirit.
Why Should I Read The Bible?
Most days I love waking up, coffeeing up, praying up, and then gobbling up the Bible. But not every day. I’m just like you in that. I need reminding about why the Bible — God’s Whole Story — is an important part of my day, for every other part of my day.
One of the dangers of reading the stories of those followers of Jesus that we find in the Bible is we can treat them as if they are almost super-human.
Martin Luther warned that the people of the church are always in danger of their hearts straying from the truth of the good news of the kingdom of God found in the person and work of Jesus Christ.
The Whole Story
On Sunday, January 7th, we will begin a year and a half exploration of the whole story of the whole Bible...
1 Corinthians (part two)
This last Sunday in our Gathering, we studied the book of 1 Corinthians together. The week of preparation leading up to that moment in the pulpit was deeply encouraging, as I sat at the feet of Paul, and watched him apply the reality of Jesus and the fullness of the Good News to four main issues in the lives of Christians in the church at Corinth. I discovered that each issue was a case study in the application of the good news to the very practical matters of our lives.