A big reason why the Back to the Future films are among my favorites is their attention to detail. Most viewers won’t notice all the subtle background references even after multiple viewings. For instance, Statler Toyota, the auto dealership referenced several times in 1985, mirrors a storefront the camera pans past in 1885 — Honest Joe Statler’s Fine Horses. The Statler family apparently had a long history of supplying the transportation needs of Hill Valley.
Dozens of similar allusions are hidden throughout the trilogy; a concept the entertainment industry often refers to as “Easter Eggs.”
Curiously, the Bible contains its own sort of Easter Eggs. When Jesus remarked that “it is they [the Scriptures] that bear witness about me” in John 5:39, the New Testament had yet to be put to paper. So he refers to the Old.
Some of the Old Testament “Easter Eggs” that bear witness about Jesus are obvious: the Passover (Exodus 12) and the Suffering Servant of Isaiah 53, for example.
Others are far less noticeable. For instance, while reading Genesis 3, we might breeze through the comment noting how God gave Adam and Eve garments of skin after they’d sinned and became suddenly aware and ashamed of their nakedness. It seems like a casual detail. But reflect on this for a moment. Their rebellion against God left Adam and Eve exposed and vulnerable, spiritually and physically. God graciously slays an animal — killing an innocent life, a sacrifice — in order to cover their shame and help them make their way in an increasingly harsh world.
When seen in that light, the connection to Jesus screams at us. He is the greater sacrifice who covers our shame — a protecting presence permanently with us.
Connections like these dot the Bible’s every page. Reading Scripture, then, is like mining for these treasures that draw us to Jesus — a lifelong pursuit, for its riches are inexhaustible.
Heavenly Father, thank you for the great treasure of knowing Jesus, made possible by your sending of him to save us. Give me a greater hunger for Your Word and open my eyes as I search it, that I might recognize more and more how all of Scripture points me to him. In Jesus’ Name, amen.
Throughout This Day: Spend time reading one of the following passages: Numbers 21:4-9, 1 Samuel 2:12-36, Psalm 1. Consider what hints or clues point to Jesus. How does this passage bear witness about him? If the Holy Spirit gives you an opportunity to share your insights with someone today, be ready!