It was spring break 2007 and I was three months into seminary education. Twenty-two years old, working thirty-two hours a week third shift, and attending PRTS as a full time M.A.R. student. That spring semester was rough; Reformation Church History with Dr. Joel Beeke, Ancient Church History with Dr. Michael Haykin, Reformed Theological Research with Drs. Richard Muller & Joel Beeke, and Preaching Christ in the OT with David Murray. Who? That is right, Dr. David P. Murray. I knew who my other profs were, but not this one. Hey, the class was on Christ in the Old Testament, it did not matter who taught the course, and most importantly at the age of twenty-two, fresh out of classical dispensational, Christ-less, Old Testament Hermeneutics, this topic had become my favorite while finishing undergrad. Little did I, nor himself know that within a year, he would come back to PRTS to teach, but as a full time professor.
I still remember it like yesterday, a one week module from 9AM – 5PM offered as an elective for M.A.R., M.Div., & Th.M. students, taught by Dr. Murray in classroom one. I had just got off work at 8AM, and drove down to the seminary to arrive for class. To my surprise the class consisted of about ten thirty to forty year-old, graduated minsters dressed in suites studying in the Th.M. program, one M.Div. student (Nathan Eshelman), and myself dress in dickie work pants and a flannel. I felt a bit out of my league, and had not an idea what I was in-store for. In walks another forty some year old man, white shirt, black suite and tie, and could not have weighed a pound over 150. Surely this was another HRC or FRC minster taking the course – wait, that is Dr. Murray? Setting up his computer and power point slide show, I begin to read the syllabus, and boy was I excited. The course outline was broken down into nine lectures;
1. The Problem, the Plan, and the Purpose
2. The Presuppositions
B. Preaching Christ from…
3. His Prophets
4. His Pictures
5. His Presence
6. His Precepts
7. His Past
8. His People
9. The Practice
I am not sure if that is the layout of his newly published book, Jesus on Every Page, (because I somehow managed not to get a copy [unlike the last two books he wrote]), but if it is even close to the course, it would be worth anyone’s time, money, and for pastors, their practice. It was two years later in 2009, I went back to the course lectures, notes, and reviewed them as I graduated. I can easily say that it was one of my favorite courses I took while at PRTS, and personally believe that not only should it be mandatory for pastors to take, but practice as well. For those who have graduated seminary studies without such a course, you should strongly consider reading Jesus on Every Page.
Speaking of Jesus Christ in the Old Testament, one of my Th.M. cohorts, Rev. Batzig posted a great article this morning on the Old Testament Personal Types and Shadows of Christ. It is a bit lengthy (3,506 words), but then again Presbyterians usually only want Presbyterians to read their posts.