Vos on a Key to Doing Biblical Theology: The Interrelatedness of God’s Living Word and Redemptive Work

“Revelation is the interpretation of redemption; it must, therefore, unfold itself in installments as redemption does.” – Geerhardus Vos

He teases this out quite finely in his work Biblical Theology: Old and New Testaments, pp. 6-9.  The sum of it is this: that while the two remain distinct, redemption continuing and revelation having ceased, they did for a time coincide as God’s redemptive acts were interpreted and applied by men carried along by the Holy Spirit for such a work.  Reflections on Vos’ statement are numerous.  The Bible is God’s interpretation of His redemptive work in history.  As redemption progressively happened, so revelation progressively developed until its full bloom in Christ (coincidentally the apex of God’s redemptive action).  This understanding of the movement within Scripture is vital to any biblical theology.  On an interesting aside, Vos goes on to say that once objective-central redemption resumes in the second coming of Christ, then the current volume of truth that we hold dear will be added unto.  Ultimately it is essential to understand that the Bible that we claim unabashedly to be infallible, inerrant, a.k.a, inspired, etc., is also living, active, moving, redemptive in its very nature, and while it is the record of objective-central acts, such a record is penned in the ink of subjective application – we would do well to hear it as it truly is the Word of God.

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