The Old and The New

“All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, that the man of God may be competent, equipped for every good work.”   2Tim3:16-17

In our study of “The Ancient Love Song, Finding Christ in the Old Testament,” we were reminded of the importance of reading and understanding God’s Word in total, in its entirely, as one consistent book of God’s sovereignty in words and salvation.  There are professors of Christ who do not subscribe to reading and studying the Old Testament and giving them equal value and weight to their own detriment and error.  Thus, a simple practical question arose: “What does a Christian believer miss by not knowing the Old Testament well?”

The Old and New Testaments are one book, the Bible. To only read and “know” the New Testament is only reading half a book. We know the middle of the story and end but not the beginning. Christ has given us the first 39 books of the Bible to tell us of the majesty and greatness of our God, His creation, of Christ, His story, our beginning, of His law and commandments, His poetry, His working in the lives of His people. It tells us of our ancestors, Abraham, Isaac and Jacob and all of our other brethren. It is our family history, our genelogy. It is Messanic and prophetic; it shows us grace, judgment and mercy. It tells us of God’s attributes. It gives us hope and encouragement. It answers old, new and contemporary questions to life and godliness. It is what the Old Testament saints, Christ in His earthy ministry, the Apostles and Disciples used to teach and learn about God and to teach about Christ. It tells us the story of redemption, salvation, faith, justification and eternal security.  It holds the key to our past and our future. It is for our learning:

“For whatsoever things were written aforetime were written for our learning, that we through patience and comfort of the scriptures might have hope.”  Romans 15:4

As He has said,

All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, that the man of God may be competent, equipped for every good work.”   2Tim3:16-17

*  *  *

All Scripture; or, the whole of Scripture; though it makes little difference as to the meaning. He follows out that commendation which he had glanced at briefly. First, he commends the Scripture on account of its authority; and secondly, on account of the utility which springs from it. In order to uphold the authority of the Scripture, he declares that it is divinely inspired; for, if it be so, it is beyond all controversy that men ought to receive it with reverence. This is a principle which distinguishes our religion from all others, that we know that God hath spoken to us, and are fully convinced that the prophets did not speak at their own suggestion, but that, being organs of the Holy Spirit, they only uttered what they had been commissioned from heaven to declare. Whoever then wishes to profit in the Scriptures, let him first of all, lay down this as a settled point, that the Law and the Prophets are not a doctrine delivered according to the will and pleasure of men, but dictated by the Holy Spirit.”__John Calvin

“All Scripture is given by inspiration of God,…. That is, all holy Scripture; for of that only the apostle is speaking; and he means the whole of it; not only the books of the Old Testament, but of the New, the greatest part of which was now written; for this second epistle to Timothy is by some thought to be the last of Paul’s epistles; and this also will hold good of what was to be written; for all is inspired by God, or breathed by him: the Scriptures are the breath of God, the word of God and not men; they are “written by the Spirit”, as the Syriac version renders it; or “by the Spirit of God”, as the Ethiopic version. The Scriptures are here commended, from the divine authority of them; and which is attested and confirmed by various arguments; as the majesty and loftiness of their style, which in many places is inimitable by men; the sublimity of the matter contained in them, which transcends all human understanding and capacity ever to have attained unto and discovered; as the trinity of persons in the Godhead, the incarnation of Christ, the resurrection of the dead, &c. The purity and holiness of them before observed, show them to be the word of him that is of purer eyes than to behold iniquity; as also their harmony and agreement, though wrote by different persons, in different places, and ages, and at sundry times, and in divers manners; what seeming inconsistencies are observed in them may, with labour and industry, by divine assistance, be reconciled.” _John Gill

“That the scripture has various uses, and answers divers ends and purposes: It is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction of all errors in judgment and practice, and for instruction in righteousness. The scripture is a perfect rule of faith and practice, and was designed for the man of God, the minister as well as the Christian who is devoted to God, for it is profitable for doctrine, etc. If we consult the scripture, which was given by inspiration of God, and follow its directions, we shall be made men of God, perfect, and thoroughly furnished to every good work.”  _Matthew Henry


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