The Basic Plot of Scripture, Part 1

JP: First of a series of articles by Michael Osborne. Biographical information on Mr Osborne is at the bottom of the article.

The Basic Plot of Scripture, Part 1

What is the Bible about? Can we reduce it to a basic plot summary? Like any other literature, it tells a story. Some elements are crucial; other elements elaborate. Granted that everything God says is true and important, He nevertheless emphasizes some things over others. Furthermore, the Holy Spirit superintended the arrangement of revelation into a particular form and order. What is that form and order? What can it teach about God’s purposes in history? Can it function as a basic “road map” for biblical interpretation, providing orientation in more difficult Scripture passages? Can it inform ethics or apologetics?

The storyline of Scripture presents three basic ideas: creation, the fall, and redemption. Genesis introduces each of these themes early on; each continues throughout the whole of Scripture; and each finds its conclusion in Revelation. The themes of creation, fall, and redemption are like three poles of a teepee, leaning against one another. If one goes down, they all go down, for we define and understand each in light of the other two.

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