He who follows Me, will not walk in darkness, but will have the Light of Life !

Question 11

Is the Old Testament no longer valid ?


The Old Testament and the New Testament form ONE BOOK and are both valid and both do speak of Jesus Christ, not just the the Gospel or the New Testament.


Before we continue, please read this story from Luke chapter 24 (v 13-27) about two disciples who were on the road on the very same day that Jesus was risen from the death, but did not yet know that He was risen! Read what happened to them!


Two disappointed disciples on the the road to Emmaus


"Now that same day two of them were going to a village called Emmaus, about seven miles from Jerusalem. They were talking with each other about everything that had happened. As they talked and discussed these things with each other, Jesus himself came up and walked along with them; but they were kept from recognizing him.


He asked them, “What are you discussing together as you walk along?”


They stood still, their faces downcast. One of them, named Cleopas, asked him, “Are you only a visitor to Jerusalem and do not know the things that have happened there in these days?”“What things?” he asked.


“About Jesus of Nazareth,” they replied. “He was a prophet, powerful in word and deed before God and all the people. The chief priests and our rulers handed him over to be sentenced to death, and they crucified him; but we had hoped that he was the one who was going to redeem Israel. And what is more, it is the third day since all this took place. In addition, some of our women amazed us. They went to the tomb early this morning but didn’t find his body. They came and told us that they had seen a vision of angels, who said he was alive. Then some of our companions went to the tomb and found it just as the women had said, but him they did not see.”


He said to them, “How foolish you are, and how slow of heart to believe all that the prophets have spoken! Did not the Christb have to suffer these things and then enter his glory?” And beginning with Moses and all the Prophets, he explained to them what was said in all the Scriptures concerning himself."


We have marked the last lines in red, because they show so clearly how Jesus affirms what we just said above or rather we follow what Jesus teaches us. The books of Moses and the Prophets do testify of Him in many ways. Think alone of the story of the sacrifice of Abraham's son Isaak who ultimately was not slaughtered because God Himself would provide a lamb! Do you see who is God's Lamb? That is Jesus.


In this and in many other ways does the Old Testament (which already existed before Jesus was born) testify of Jesus Christ in advance! And also the New Testament does speak about who and how He was when he was on earth and also about his second coming and how we should live in the expectation of His return!


The term Old Testament does not mean that its significance has ended or that it is no longer reliable or valuable for the believers. The word 'testament' should be understood as 'a covenant (or 'contract') between God and men. The Old Testament describes Gods covenant with Moses and Israel that they would follow and obey the Law of God as given to Moses on the mountain. So this is the old covenant or the old testament.


The people of Israel did not fullfill their promise to follow and obey the Law. The Law was good and the Old Covenant was good, but the people failed to meet its requirements time and time again because of the sinfulness of the heart of mankind.


Maybe you do not agree that we wrote 'mankind' and you say the Israelites did not obey, therefore we should write 'Israelites' not 'mankind'.But the Bible learns that all people have sinned and are missing the glory of God! Even the people from Rif would not have done better then the Israelites. All people have sinned since Adam and miss the glory of God. In other words the Old Testament/Covenant leads to death because the reward of sin is death (just think of Adam and Eve). So actually 'old' means that it did not work because of our sin. The Bible says that the wages of sin, is death (Roman 3:23)


But let us praise God that He had established an earlier covenant with Abraham by faith. We read about this in the Bible in a letter of the apostle Paul to the believers in Galatia (in present day Turkey where there were not yet Turkish peoples living at that time):


Faith or Observance of the Law


Consider Abraham: “He believed God, and it was credited to him as righteousness.” Understand, then, that those who believe are children of Abraham. The Scripture foresaw that God would justify the Gentiles by faith, and announced the gospel in advance to Abraham: “All nations will be blessed through you.” So those who have faith are blessed along with Abraham, the man of faith.


All who rely on observing the law are under a curse, for it is written: “Cursed is everyone who does not continue to do everything written in the Book of the Law.” Clearly no one is justified before God by the law, because, “The righteous will live by faith.” The law is not based on faith; on the contrary, “The man who does these things will live by them.”


Christ redeemed us from the curse of the law by becoming a curse for us, for it is written: “Cursed is everyone who is hung on a tree.” He redeemed us in order that the blessing given to Abraham might come to the Gentiles through Christ Jesus, so that by faith we might receive the promise of the Spirit.


The Law and the Promise


Brothers, let me take an example from everyday life. Just as no one can set aside or add to a human covenant that has been duly established, so it is in this case. The promises were spoken to Abraham and to his seed. The Scripture does not say “and to seeds,” meaning many people, but “and to your seed,” meaning one person, who is Christ. What I mean is this: The law, introduced 430 years later, does not set aside the covenant previously established by God and thus do away with the promise. For if the inheritance depends on the law, then it no longer depends on a promise; but God in his grace gave it to Abraham through a promise.


What, then, was the purpose of the law? It was added because of transgressions until the Seed to whom the promise referred had come. The law was put into effect through angels by a mediator. A mediator, however, does not represent just one party; but God is one.


Is the law, therefore, opposed to the promises of God? Absolutely not! For if a law had been given that could impart life, then righteousness would certainly have come by the law. But the Scripture declares that the whole world is a prisoner of sin, so that what was promised, being given through faith in Jesus Christ, might be given to those who believe.


Before this faith came, we were held prisoners by the law, locked up until faith should be revealed. So the law was put in charge to lead us to Christh that we might be justified by faith. Now that faith has come, we are no longer under the supervision of the law.


You are all sons of God through faith in Christ Jesus, for all of you who were baptized into Christ have clothed yourselves with Christ. There is neither Jew nor Greek, slave nor free, male nor female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus. If you belong to Christ, then you are Abraham’s seed, and heirs according to the promise."


In the first book of the Bible (Genesis) which speaks us of Abraham, we see an other covenant already in operation which was a covenant based on faith in God who promised a 'seed' to Abraham! This was in operation before the Law of God was given to Moses.


The promise should stir up our faith in God. The fulfillment of Gods promise to Abraham is Jesus Christ, who is the one who replaces Abrahams son Isaak in bringing redemption between God and men by his perfect sacrifice of Himself on the cross for our sin! He is the Lamb of God that takes away the sin of the world.


In Jesus Christ we have a NEW covenant with God which brings us life by faith in Jesus Christ. In Him we have the promise of eternal life, which we lost in the paradise. This covenant has been in operation already before the foundation of heavens and earth in Gods heart and mind. The Law of Moses does not contradict it, the Law is also not inferior, but the Law made us, so to say, even more sinful then we already were without the Law, because we did not follow the Law.


Read below what Jesus says about his death in John 12:24


"I tell you the truth, unless a kernel of wheat falls to the ground and dies, it remains only a single seed. But if it dies, it produces many seeds."


If you and me put ourselves to death by no longer relying on ourselves, but instead trusting in Jesus Christ, who died for you and me on the cross to take away our life full of sin and unbelief (... or do you and me think that we would do better under the Law then the Jews did?), then this old (that is sinful and fruitless) inborn character of man will be done away with by His cross. By putting our faith in Christ our own 'old man' inside us is buried with Jesus in His grave so that we may rise with Him and may start a NEW life through faith in Him, even today already!


If we understand that there is only ONE book from God, the Bible (Old and New Testament together), then we have to live by it and read it daily if as long as we can.


We conclude with two quotations one from the apostle Paul from his letter to the believers in Rome (both Jews and Gentiles)


"For everything that was written in the past was written to teach us, so that through endurance and the encouragement of the Scriptures we might have hope." (Romans 15:4)


and one from the apostle Peter who wrote the following to the believers


"I want you to recall the words spoken in the past by the holy prophets and the command given by our Lord and Savior through your apostles." (2 Peter 3:2)


Note that both apostles did write letters that are part of what we have called the New Testament of the Bible and we read that both apostles want us to give thorough attention to what has been written in the past in God's Word, in the Old Testament!


The whole Bible speaks of God's love for this world in sending His Son and it speaks about how God - through all the ages of time - prepared us step by step for the coming of His Son and about how He will ultimately bring all things in heavens and earth under the rule of Jesus Christ for His glory!




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