Understanding Old Testament:
Understanding Old Testament is very important for every bible scholar. This is because understanding Old Testament properly will enhance the scholar’s knowledge while reading the New Testament. The Old Testament is called the Scriptures or the Mysteries. See Luke 24:27, 44-45, John 5:39, Romans 16:25. This implies that most of the things stated in them are not plainly stated. Therefore, understanding Old Testament will require the exigency for thorough excavation of the latent details in them. This is in order to ratify every misnomer surrounding their meanings. It is important to state that the way a message is conveyed will definitely help the receiver to understand it easily without much subtleness.
And if it is conveyed in a cloudy manner, the receiver has no option rather than to unravel that cloudiness on the message and make sure he or she comes out with clear information from the message. Surely, understanding Old Testament with the rightful interpretation of what the message is all about will of course help the reader to act in the right direction. And a wrong interpretation of the message will land the reader on the wrong pedestal. And of course it will mean that he or she will begin to manifest wrong action(s). Yes, if your interpretation of the Old Testament is wrong definitely your doctrines are going to be wrong as well. There are no two ways about it!
Understanding Old Testament Is Very Important:
Understanding Old Testament is vital because greater parts of it are not plain stories. They are given to the messengers as visions, and visions are mainly conveyed in symbols. And those symbols don’t represent what they appear to be on the surface. Hence the need to unearth the logical output of what those symbols stands for.
This is very essential in studying and understanding Old Testament. This has been the problem of the people of God who couldn’t properly digest the lines of the Old Testament. And as a result they couldn’t have the right skill to grasp in real term what the power and knowledge of God is. So because of lots of misinterpretation of the Old Testament mistakes are everywhere even in our churches today. See Matthew 22:29.
Does it mean God doesn’t want people to understand these messages? Is it why He gave the messengers the messages in symbols and illustrations and so on? Well, the messages in the Old Testament are spiritual and some of the messengers didn’t have the spiritual withal to fully comprehend them. Hence, God delivering the messages to them according to their level of understanding of spiritual matters. For instance in Acts 10:10 -16 the best way to communicate to Peter who is an adamant Jewish believer at that time, is the way God communicated to him in that vision about the Gentiles. The best way God could communicate to Daniel about the rising and falling of powers in his days was to use metals and clays structures. Moses couldn’t understand who Satan is, hence the use of snake to express how subtle Satan is.
Old Testament Misconceptions:
Jesus told His audience that they have to consume his flesh and blood. This is in order to have a place in Him. This statement didn’t go down well with some of His disciples. And many of the people that were listening to Him at that particular time left Him. This was because they had a literal understanding of what He said. In the same vein that the understanding Old Testament has become literal. They couldn’t fathom the rationale behind such an ‘unguided’ statement in the sense that they knew Him and His background.
Nevertheless, they knew Jesus after flesh and never had a real revelation of who He actually is. This story took place in the gospel and the gospel doesn’t seem to be the Old Testament. It is very interesting to know that the era of the gospel messages is conducted under the law. Remember, Jesus came to fulfill the law and while He walked the face of this earth he taught people. That is in parables and parables are coded languages.
In the way and manner the activities in the gospels were conducted, it is very obvious that the gospels are extension of the Old Testament. And because of this, some teachings and statements from them should not be used to establish a Christian doctrine. The implication here is that such statements and teachings needed to be deciphered. Furthermore, the Old Testament is regarded as the shadows of things to come. The shadows of things to come include the gospel and of course one cannot get niceties from shadows Colossians 2:17.
The Old Order Is Full Of Coded:
But because of revelation knowledge built up by decoding the messages of the Old Testament, the New Testament has better precise, concise, accurate, factual and specific messages. This happened because of the advent of the Holy Ghost that came to dwell in the believers. See John 16:12-13, 1 Corinthians 2:13, Romans 16:25. So from the book of Acts through Revelation are teachings and instructions developed as a result of decoding the messages of the Old Testament by the Apostles, Prophets, Pastors, Teachers and Evangelist that Jesus Christ gave to the Church.
The significant differences between both Testaments are visible in the areas of operation and who mediated them. Now one cannot talk about the Testaments without talking about what prompted their existence. And it is equally important to point out why one of them is regarded as Old and the other New.
However, it is interesting to know that it has never been the will of God to relate with man conditionally. God’s plan is that man should have intimate fellowship and relate with Him void of conditions. That type of fellowship that induces and reflects a fatherhood relationship between God and man. Although, the decision to enter into this fellowship should be a demonstration of man’s will and God cannot coerce man. It is not within the jurisdiction and character of God to invade people’s will. That was why God created man and gave him the right to make choice.
The Relationship In The Old Order:
Several scenarios played out in the book of Genesis indicating intimate relationship between man and God. Starting from Adam to Abel and Cain, to Enoch, Noah, Abraham etc. In this relationship that involves the names of those mentioned, God’s caring character was conspicuous. Even when mistakes and disobediences occur, He fixes them (Genesis 4:10 – 15, 8:21-22).
This is an indication that making mistakes or man’s mistakes in the fellowship or relationship has never been the issue. The issue has been man’s inconsistency in fellowshipping and relating with God. Backing off from a relationship is not in the dictionary of God. As a result God had never walked away from any relationship that He had with man. It has been the fault of man and man is always the one walking away from God and God has been the one looking for man (Genesis 3:9-10, 4:16).
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