Published
2.25.2019

What is Creation? The old testament reloaded

This episode is the third and final of our reboots from Iain Provan’s epic 2011 series on the Old Testament Reloaded – “What is Creation?”.  In this talk Iain concludes his magnificent trilogy of talks positioning the vast Mosaic vision of God and reality in contrast to the prevailing Ancient Near Eastern worldviews. It is so important to grasp the fact that this was a contest of worldviews – not religions. In the ANE world, the ‘cosmology’ was their total worldview – it was philosophy, reality, society and values. So Moses upturned all of this. We do Moses a vast disservice if we then put him back in our ‘religious’ box – and we can learn from these talks how to widen our grammar of the gospel from merely religious language to all of life language.

This talk will echo lots of the themes that I raised in my latest Breakfast with Jesus talk on Ezekiel’s Wider Vision of the Temple where I explained some of the motifs that link the cosmos to the temple.  Iain goes into even deeper detail here and weaves a vast tapestry together of OT allusions to the creation as ‘sacred space’.  His overarching theme is that creation is not divine – but it is sacred.  But Iain does not stop there – he moves onto the associated vision of humanity that this ‘cosmos as temple’ vision implies. That humanity is placed in the temple as the image of God – the vice regent of created space.

If you like listening to Iain, then dive into more of his talks on our website. You will find two series there – the 2011 series called ‘The OT Reloaded’ and the 2015 series called ‘Seriously Dangerous Religion’.

We will add a great short bibliography that Iain gave us recommending some key resources if we want to take some of the thinking further. Of course, one of them is John Walton, another valued guest of ours in Gospel Conversations.

Our next talk will return to Ezekiel to continue the Breakfast with Jesus series. In that talk we will discuss ‘What is ‘glory’?’

Iain Provan

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