Why Study the Old Testament? Matthew 5:17-19. Our past is part of our identity – who we are. As Christians, our identity is found in our relationship with Christ. Christians are called “New Testament Saints” We tend to divide the Bible: The Old Testament is primarily about God’s Law
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Matthew 5:17–19 (NIV) 17 “Do not think that I have come to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I have not come to abolish them but to fulfill them. 18 I tell you the truth, until heaven and earth disappear, not the smallest letter, not the least stroke of a pen, will by any means disappear from the Law until everything is accomplished. 19 Anyone who breaks one of the least of these commandments and teaches others to do the same will be called least in the kingdom of heaven, but whoever practices and teaches these commands will be called great in the kingdom of heaven.
“Law and the Prophets” = entire Hebrew Scriptures (Old Testament in our Bible).
Genesis 2:7 (NIV) - …the LORD God formed the man from the dust of the ground and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life, and the man became a living being.
Psalm 139:-3,7-10 (NIV) - O LORD, you have searched me and you know me. You know when I sit and when I rise; you perceive my thoughts from afar. You discern my going out and my lying down; you are familiar with all my ways…Where can I go from your Spirit? Where can I flee from your presence? If I go up to the heavens, you are there; if I make my bed in the depths, you are there. If I rise on the wings of the dawn, if I settle on the far side of the sea, even there your hand will guide me, your right hand will hold me fast.
Throughout the Old Testament we see God pursue relationship with people who desire to know him and follow him.
Psalm 116:5 (NIV) - The LORD is gracious and righteous; our God is full of compassion.
The Old Testament system of worship centered on forgiveness and atonement through a sacrifice