I once made a silly offer: “Give me a random Old Testament passage, and I’ll show you how the 5 step process works!” So they offered me 2 Kings 10, the lovely story of the seventy heads offered to Jehu in baskets. (Read it yourself if you don’t believe me.)
My goal was to show how the 5 step process could take us from that passage to a sensible message I could preach in church on a Sunday. This podcast is a summary of what we did. (I say “we” because I made my listeners do much of the work, asking:
- What DID the story mean? (I.e. what was it supposed to communicate to its early hearers, Jews in or just after the exile.)
- What are the differences that make a difference? (I.e. what has changed that either makes us likely to misunderstand, or that make our situation significantly different from theirs. One that isn’t mentioned in the podcast, but should have been is that we will be shocked by this tale of mass murder, they probably cheered it on, politics was a rougher game there than for most of us today 😉
- What does it say about God? (If the Bible is about God then each passage will tell us something about God. And Scritpture IS about God and NOT about us.)
- How do we understand this in the light of Jesus? Or, since this is an Old Testament passage: How does Jesus complete or fill out what is here?
- How does that work today?
Listen and see if you think I succeeded, got a message for today, and one which is Christian, and one which is fair to the lovely passage of Scripture they gave me!
BTW my mate Jonathan has been writing about Christian Preaching of the Old Testament, I wonder what he thinks of this example 😉