The Big Picture

I have a pet peeve. 

It’s one-verse devotionals that are either twisted out of context or don’t even apply. I’m not surprised at Biblically illiterate nonbelievers; it’s when believers don’t have the big picture of the Bible and where we fit in it.

The short version is the world was perfect, and then it went to crap. That’s a theological term, by the way. Jesus fixed it and is giving everyone a chance to join him before it’s all made perfect and new. 

Bible history is full of humans messing up, and God punishing them and restoring them. 

In the Garden of Eden, mankind tried to be like God, and they were exiled, and it went downhill from there. 

Heavenly spirit beings mated with humans, evil spread, and God had to flood the place. But he rescued Noah. 

Then there was the Tower of Babel. Man, in his hubris, decided to try to reach God and pull Him down from the throne. 

God scattered humanity, dividing the nations between His subordinates in the spiritual realm, giving them admin permission. 

Then he called Abraham out of modern-day Iraq to go to modern-day Israel.

Famine drove that family to Egypt. After that generation died out, they were enslaved. God rescued them, working mighty miracles and showing Egypt’s gods who was boss. 

During the exodus, factions rebelled, were punished, and in the end, only Joshua and Caleb were left of the first generation. 

The second generation did well, but after Joshua died…well, read the book of Judges. 

Rebellion->punishment->restoration. Repeat.

When Israel became a monarchy, it only made it through two kings before falling back into the pattern. Solomon started worshiping his wives’ gods, his kids continued, and the kingdom was split into two. 

The two nations rebel against God, are punished, then restored when a good king brings reformation until God ends up exiling everyone to Assyria and Babylon. 

They get to come back to Israel, and then God gets quiet for 400 years. That’s the Cliff Notes version of the Old Testament. 

Then John the Baptist comes and says the Messiah is coming. Jesus hits the scene, and the restoration process begins for the final time. 

People are exiled from the Kingdom of God because they don’t follow the king, but the king is calling them back. When all who would come back have returned, the rebels will be locked away and everything made new. 

That’s the Cliff Notes version of the New Testament. 

Personally, it feels like we’re in the time of Judges. Everyone is so tribal, and people do whatever they want because they don’t answer to anyone. 

Adam Savage from Mythbusters once quipped, “I reject your reality and substitute my own.

People have taken that concept to heart. Anything objective or transcendent is rejected if it doesn’t fit their desires. Subjective relativism rules the day. 

It’s not a new thing, though, as we’ve looked at in this post. One day we will all get the ultimate reality check when Jesus returns. 

The Way, the Truth, and the Life will burn away all that is false, and everything will be exposed. 

Where are you in this cycle?

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