(The book ONE is no longer in print, but has expanded to the ONE Trilogy: One Ekklesia, One Truth, and One Life & Glory)
It's the festive season of Christmas and the New Year! As we catch our fun after a year of hard work, we want to remind ourselves of what - or rather, WHO - the reason for the season is. To do that, let us turn to a few pages of ONE. I am positive it will be a refreshing reminder for you that it's all about Jesus!
The central theme of ONE is Jesus’ prayer in John 17, “…That they all may be ONE!” Accordingly, the Lord gave three essential gifts to actualize that dream. These gifts are (1) Eternal life: the Father’s name; (2) Truth: His Word; and (3) His glory of service (ministry). Consequently, each of these gifts is discussed in some detail in three different sections.
Fast forward to the second gift, the truth of His word. We see in ONE that Jesus Christ is the singular topic of the entire bible! God’s intention is to reveal His purpose—hidden and fulfilled in the person and work of Jesus Christ. If a person reads the Bible and misses Jesus Christ, it is like they never read the Bible. The New Testament starts and ends with Jesus Christ.
The New Testament begins with Jesus’ ancestry spanning back to King David and Abraham, and continues with His birth, His youth, His work, His teachings, His life, His death, His resurrection, and His continuation with His disciples through His Spirit. In another section of the New Testament, in a section written by John, the apostle says that Jesus Christ is God without a beginning. Jesus created all things, and He put on flesh to become a man. In yet another section of this book, the writer describes Jesus living in His disciples. As a result of their preaching about Jesus Christ, those disciples were multiplied. Believers in Him became His enlargement, His body—His assembly.
Also recorded in the New Testament are various letters written by apostles to woo believers back to Jesus Christ, since many were becoming distracted and turning away to other things such as laws and meaningless philosophies. Satan, the enemy, did his best to confuse believers, distract them, and pull them away from the simplicity that is in Jesus Christ. The apostles, on the other hand, made it their life’s work to keep believers focused on Christ.
The last book of the Bible, the book of Revelation is the unveiling of Jesus Christ (Rev. 1:1, 22:20–21). In fact, Revelation is the end for the entire Bible, both the Old and the New Testaments.
The Old Testament speaks of Jesus Christ in prophecies, types and allegories. Everything in the Old Testament Scriptures, which were written hundreds of years before the birth of Jesus Christ, pointed to the person and the purpose of Jesus. When a person reads the Scriptures in this way, as originally intended, they will come to Jesus Christ for eternal life. (John 5:39–40, Luke 24:44–45).
Let’s consider a few examples of how the Old Testament speaks of Jesus Christ.
Adam, the First Man Created by God: In Romans 5:14 and 1 Corinthians 15:45, we see that Adam was only a shadow of Jesus Christ. The real man was not Adam, but Jesus who actually fulfills God’s purpose.
The Tree of Life in the Garden of Eden: The Tree of Life in Genesis is a picture of Jesus Christ, the real Tree of Life for man to eat to have eternal life. (John 14:6, 15:1)
Can you think of other elements in the Old Testament which really points to Christ as the real substance? Would you like to share some of them?
Read up more on this in Chapter 7 (from Page 107 of ONE. You can access an it online at www.onebody.life)