I recently received the following reflections by my friend Tony Arlyn. They constitute a good and accurate summary of the Bible’s worldview, message, and doctrines. Because it is such a succinct and insightful summation of the Bible’s message, I pass it on to you.
A few things I learned from the Bible:
- Every human being is created into a world that is evil, temporary, filled with rebellion, and doomed for destruction.
- Every human being is also evil, temporary, filled with rebellion, and rightly doomed for destruction.
- Every human being manifests this evil with an exceedingly wicked rebellion against his very own Creator by not acknowledging Him, honoring Him, or thanking Him for his very existence.
- Every human being also demonstrates this deceitful rebellion by replacing his Creator with a “lesser version,” someone of his own creation; and in doing so, every human being denies the truth about his Creator’s transcendence, His absolute power over His creation, His authority, and His genuine goodness.
- Every human being hates real truth and genuine goodness, and he defines truth and goodness for himself.
- Every human being tries to create his own self-significance apart from his Creator in order to justify his own existence.
- Every human being will never find his real significance in this present created world.
- Every human being is destined to die in this state of rebellion, rightfully doomed to destruction, unless the Creator decides to be merciful towards him and chooses to act on his behalf by using His absolute power to begin to change him from being evil to being good.
- Every human being who has been chosen by the Creator will love mercy, struggle for the rest of his life with his own evil and rebellion, and begin to try to see, understand, and pursue genuine goodness.
- Every human being who has been chosen by the Creator will repeatedly face the truth about himself, begin to know the truth about his Creator, and begin to learn what is genuinely good, true, and valuable.
- Every human being chosen by the Creator will try to overcome his evil desire for self-significance and find his ultimate significance in what the Creator is doing on his behalf.
- The Creator of all reality promises that, after physical death, those who believe Him, trust Him, follow Him, and agree with His purposes will have a life in a good and glorious time and place in the future.
- The Creator of all reality promises to finish the work He has started in the human beings he has chosen so that they will no longer be evil, temporary, and filled with rebellion, but they will be good and glorious; so that they will fit in and belong in the good and glorious time and place in the future.
- The Creator of all reality places a mark on the lives of the human beings He has chosen and is changing, and He calls the mark faith and promises to deliver the marked ones from the coming final destruction.
- The Creator of all reality chose to make known all this through the tiny nation of Israel, to whom He revealed Himself as the one true Creator and proclaimed: “Hear O Israel: the LORD is your God; the LORD is one, and there is no other one like Him.”
- The Creator of all reality also chose to reveal Himself and proclaim His purposes in time and space through the Jewish man Jesus, whom He called His ‘son’, and He made Jesus both Lord and the promised Messiah of Israel, the one who will one day rule over the good and glorious time and place in the future as its King, representing the Creator Himself.
- The Creator of all reality was pleased with the life of His son Jesus, and He revealed to the human beings He has chosen that they should follow Jesus in the same way they would follow Him so that they might live in the good and glorious time and place in the future.
- The Creator of all reality was so pleased with the life of His son Jesus that, after Jesus was crucified and died, the Creator brought him back to life in a new and glorious way so that human beings could see for themselves what the Creator has planned for those whom He has chosen for Himself and given to His son Jesus.
- Every human being chosen by the Creator will, after he dies, be brought back to life in a new and glorious way when the man Jesus returns to rule over the good and glorious time and place in the future.
- The good and glorious time and place in the future will be the time and place when the genuine goodness and glory of the Creator is evident for all to see, and, because of the Creator’s mercy towards the human beings He has chosen, genuine goodness and glory will become a living reality in the lives of those who belong to Him and to His son Jesus.