Saturday, May 20, 2006

Thoughts upon my return

I am back from Synod. It was a fun time and while not quite as productive as I had hoped, it was a meeting filled with remarkable unity. The issue we expected to divide and cause rifts (the idea of a denominational seminary), did not. We did recommit our Federal Vision report to make it stronger with more proofs, which did disappoint me a little. I did think the report was not up to usual standards, but I hoped we would make an effort to make some sort of statement. Older and wiser men than I prevailed, and we made no such statement. However, the unexpected highlight of the meetings was the passing of a salary for a missionary to Uganda in joint co-operation with the OPC. Apparently two men in our denomination now are praying about it, and we approved money for one to go for four years and teach in a seminary in Uganda. This is quite a high moment in the RCUS history as we have committed to foreign missions. It was a wonderful time over all.

And just to prove it was not all church politics and crunching numbers, I thought I would share a thought that was shared with me about the ‘word of the Lord’ phrases often used in the OT. I want to open this up for comment because it was an idea that had not occurred to me in the past, and I want the thoughts of others.

Places such as Genesis 15:4 or 2 Samuel 7:4 use the phrase, ‘the word of the Lord came unto him, saying’ and then follows the prophetic statement. Notice the statement literal claims the word of the Lord said something to the prophet. It is also similar in other places such as 1 Samuel 3:21 where the Lord is revealed to Samuel by the ‘word of the Lord’. Here the word of the Lord reveals Jehovah to Samuel. Do these type of references, which are common place, have any connotation of Jesus Christ being the agent or teacher or revealer. We know the Jesus is the Word of God (John 1:1) and that Christ. So the term ‘word’ is not a difficulty. It may also fit with 1 Peter 3:18-20 where Christ preached in the days of Noah.

I would like to hear the thoughts of those more skilled in Hebrew, and those who have more commentaries than I do. It is an intriguing theory, but I am not yet convinced it is exegetically possible or sound. I look forward to comments.