White Horse Inn broadcast where Mike Horton was interviewing Dennis Johnson, author of Him We Proclaim, Preaching Christ in All the Scriptures, and Johnson gave some simple and helpful advice for filtering our study of Scripture through Christ as we interpret it. In essence we come to each passage of the Bible and ask how this relates to Christ in one of His roles: Prophet, Priest, and King.
Priest – Jesus’ role of Priest serves our central need to be reconciled to God, the need for forgiveness and reconciliation. Here the guilty person is made righteous by the slaughter of the spotless Lamb in his place – by this we are justified, that is we are declared not guilty and are acceptable and pleasing in His sight.
King – as the King, Jesus is the one who rules us AND the one who obeys in our place. He is the perfect picture of true submission. Our King tells us how to live, lived perfectly for us in our place, and leaves us an example to look to.
Prophet – as the true Prophet, Jesus is the one who speaks God’s truth to us. He challenges us to live in the reality of this world as God has revealed it to us. As the Bible says, Jesus is the very Word (Message) of God.
If we come to the Bible merely to see what it is that we are supposed to be doing then we will fall headlong into legalism and failure. It is only the Gospel that frees us and empowers us to live as our Lord has called us.