Panorama

I have a picture from 1917 or ’18 of my grandfather’s army company. It’s a panoramic photo that, because of the limits of the technology of the time, was taken in numerous exposures then seamlessly joined together in the darkroom at a later time. Because of the way these pictures were taken, it was possible for a man on one end of that long row of soldiers to sprint to the other end and have his picture taken a second time. So, in some of these old photos, you will find the same soldier on both ends of a row at what looks to be the same time. I suppose it would be possible to find the same soldier in one of these panoramic pictures on both ends and in the middle.

It’s like that when we take a panoramic look at the Scriptures. We look to the beginning, to creation, and then turn our gaze to the end, to the judgment and beyond, and at both the beginning and the end, we find the same figure. In the middle, we find him again. In fact, he’s everywhere we look! Throughout the great story that runs through the Scriptures, we find Jesus Christ. He is “the Alpha and the Omega, the beginning and the end.” And he is there in the middle, too.

God’s story is as seamless as one of those old panoramic pictures, and everywhere we look we find His Son. Sometimes, when we’re reading the Scriptures, we get the idea that God’s story has been interrupted, started, and stopped, or that the theme has changed. It’s not so. It is one story from beginning to end. It is the story of what God has done and is doing, how he rights what has been wronged in his creation. It is the story of his love and faithfulness or, as the Scripture often puts it, his righteousness.

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