"I propose that the primary theme that progresses throughout the Old Testament and indeed throughout the Bible, is the establishment of God’s presence among his people (“I will put my dwelling place among you,” e.g., Lev 26:11) with the explicit of being in relationship with them/us (“I will . . . be your God, and you will be my people,” e.g., Ex 6:7; Lev 26:12; Jer 11:4; Ezek 36:28). I do not consider this to be the “center” of Old Testament theology, but it is an overarching theme, arguably the most dominant and persuasive of themes, the trajectory along which the program of God moves. It is the covenant which gives formal articulation to the stages of the relationship between God and his people; it is the promise of God that he will make such a relationship possible; it is the Torah that governs how people may live in the presence of God and sustain relationship with him; and it is the kingdom of God that expresses his role in the cosmos and in which we participate as we live out our relationship with him."John H. Walton, Old Testament Theology for Christians: From Ancient Context to Enduring Belief (Downers Grove: InterVarsity, 2017), 26.
Nov 15, 2018
The Primary Theme of the Old Testament
I have been working through John Walton's recent Old Testament Theology. Here is what Walton has to say about the main theme of the OT.