Tuesday, March 09, 2010

OT Perspicuity

Luke 16:31
(31)  He said to him, 'If they do not hear Moses and the Prophets, neither will they be convinced if someone should rise from the dead.'"

(31)  εἶπεν δὲ αὐτῷ, Εἰ Μωϋσέως καὶ τῶν προφητῶν οὐκ ἀκούουσιν, οὐδ' ἐάν τις ἐκ νεκρῶν ἀναστῇ πεισθήσονται.

This is quite a condemning statement.  It's also rather prophetic and helps to build our theology a little bit.  We see that the Jews had all they needed to know the Messiah.  We call it the Old Testament, but they called it the Tanak.  The point is that one can see Christ in the Old Testament.  You don't even have to resort to crazy allegories like making every reference to wood into a reference to the cross.  He's right there in passages like Isaiah 6:1-7, for example.

I find it interesting that this also comes at the end of a parable where he uses the name Lazarus as the righteous, but poor man who ended up in paradise with Abraham.  Of course, that is also the name of a man that Jesus did raise from the dead.  I don't think that is a coincidence.  Lazarus is someone who was raised from the dead.  As Jesus told this parable He was also someone who would rise from the dead, thereby fulfilling the subjunctive mood used with ἀναστῇ.  As we can see today, that did not convince many of the Jews, but if they had read their Tanak correctly they would not have missed Him.

On a side note, this parable also seems to give credence to the idea of hell as a place of perpetual torment.  It doesn't provide an ironclad argument since it is a parable, but it is just one more brick in the foundation of our theology of eternal punishment for the unrighteous.  It is something to consider at any rate.

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