The Old Testament Isn't Cool?
How many times have you heard someone say the Old Testament no applies? "The Old Testament is no longer applicable since we have the New Testament". I guess if you were to say the Old Testament is outdated, you would have to agree that the New Testament is
outdated as well, wouldn't you? I mean if you are looking at time only, between the writing of Malachi (the last book of the Old Testament) and the writing of Matthew (the first book of the New Testament), was only about 400 years. Putting that into perspective, it has been about 2,000 years since the writing of the New Testament books. The point is that neither are out of date.
1 Peter 3:15, "But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts; and be ready always to give an answer to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you with meekness and fear".
Have you ever seen a trend that was in style years ago make a comeback? Whether it is bell bottoms or vinyl records, things go out of style and come back all the time. The "cool" thing about the Bible is that it is never out of style. Peter said that we are to be ready to share the Gospel with people. When you witness to someone do you have your favorite verses that you share? How prepared are you? I heard it said that you should be able to witness in less than 30 seconds. I guess your witness should be expandable, eh?
John 5:39, "Search the scriptures; for in them ye think ye have eternal life; and they are they which testify of me."
Jesus is out there doing His thing when He gets into it with the Pharisees for healing on the Sabbath? Really? Sound like modern-day politicians. Anyway, during this exchange, He tells them all of the scriptures that they are studying are about Him. Not only that, He tells them that the scriptures "testify" of Him. That is pretty heavy, don't you think? I mean what were the "scriptures" at the time of Jesus' earthly ministry? The Old Testament, of course. I believe Him when He says this so He must be in there somewhere, don't you think? Either that or He was lying.
Luke 24:27, "And beginning at Moses and all the prophets, he expounded unto them in all the scriptures the things concerning himself."
Jesus was beaten to a bloody pulp, hung on a cross to die, had His side pierced through into His heart, and died. He rose again and came back to tell a few friends. While on His "reunion" tour, He appears to two of His disciples that were walking to Emmaus. He talks for a minute about their demeanor and then BAM!, He hits them with this verse. What does it mean, "beginning at Moses"?
Moses wrote the Pentateuch, or the first five books of the Bible. So from Jesus' mouth, we know that somewhere in there is at least one reference to Him. He says also "all the prophets". I do not know how many times that He was referring to, but He is laced throughout the Old Testament. That fact, and it is a fact, does away with the notion that the Old Testament is no longer relevant. As a matter of fact, it makes the Old Testament cool! Let's take a look at just two examples. These two examples would be enough to at least get your head to spin if you did not already believe that Jesus is who He says He is.
Genesis 5 -
In this 32 verse chapter, we have an accounting of 10 men. Why these ten men? It is "generations of Adam". Aren't we all from Adam? So why stop at 10? Glad you asked. There are 10 generations from Adam to Noah. Remember him? The guy who rode out the flood in the ark? Turns out he was the 10th from Adam. Back then, every name meant something. Doesn't sound like a big deal today, but back then it was. I encourage you to read Genesis 5, but I will give you the highlights.
Adam, Seth, Enosh, Kenan, Mahalalel, Jared, Enoch, Methuselah, Lamech, and Noah. Those are the ten guys. So what do their names mean?
Adam is simple, it is man. As the first man, that seems straightforward. Seth was Adam's son and his name means appointed. In Genesis 4:25, Eve named him that as you can see when you read it. Enosh was Seth's son. His name is from the root anash which means to be incurable, mortal, frail, or miserable. What a way to go through life, eh?
Kenan was Enosh's son. In keeping with the family, his name means sorrow, dirge, or elegy. Then comes Mahalalel. That's a mouth full. Keep in mind that all of these names are based in Hebrew roots. Anytime you see "el" in a name, it means God. His name means blessed God. Jared was born to Mahalalel. His name is from the Hebrew verb yaradh which means shall come down. Jared then has a bouncing baby boy and names him Enoch. Enoch is an amazing man in history, but this didn't happen until he was about 65 years old. He uttered the first prophecy and you can see it in the next to last book of the New Testament; Jude 14 and 15.His name means teaching or commencement.
Then there is Methuselah. Everyone knows him because he is the oldest man who ever lived at 969 years. And yet? He died before his father. How can this be? It is a trick question since his father never died, but was raptured up to be with God. Anyway, Methuselah comes from two main roots. The first is muth which means death and shalach which means to bring. Turns out Enoch was given a prophecy of the great flood of Noah and was told when his son dies, the flood will come. Do your math and you will see that the year Methuselah died, the flood came.
He has a son named Lamech. It means despairing. Then Lamech has Noah. In Genesis 5:29, he explains his name to us. Noah means comfort or rest. When you sit back and look at this chapter, it is really just a genealogy of Adam to Noah. That is until you know what their names mean in Hebrew.
Adam - Man
Seth - Appointed
Enosh - Mortal, Frail, Miserable
Kenan - Sorrow, Dirge, Elegy
Mahalalel - Blessed God
Jared - Shall Come Down
Enoch - Teaching or Commencement
Methuselah - His Death Shall Bring
Lamech - Despairing
Noah - Comfort
The Gospel of Jesus Christ:
Man (is) appointed mortal sorrow, (but) the Blessed God shall come down teaching (that) His death shall bring (the) despairing comfort.
I don't know about you, but that gives me chills every time. What about Numbers 2? Glad you asked. The Hebrew children were wandering in the wilderness and God was trying to teach them so many things. He even had a way He wanted them to camp. Sounds trivial, but then again...
The way they numbered folks back then was by battle ready men, plus women, children, and the aged. There were four groups of three of the tribes of Israel. To make this simple, Each group was told to camp on either side of the Levites who were camping in the middle. Since they could not fight, the were protected by everyone else. The rules God gave them were that they could only make their camps as wide as the Levite's camp but could go as far as needed. So if the Levites needed a square of about 3 acres, then each group could only camp as wide as 3 acres but could go as far as needed to get everyone in. Understand?
So with the Levites in the middle, camping to the south of them were the tribes of Reuben, Simeon, and Gad. They had about 151,450 folks. Camping to the west of the Levites were Ephraim, Manasseh, and Benjamin. They had about 108,100 folks. Camping to the north of the Levites were Dan, Asher, and Naphtali. They had about 157,600 folks. And lastly, camping to the east of the Levites were Judah, Issachar, and Zebullun. They had about 186,400 folks. Remember, the Levites had about 22,300 men plus women and children. The rules were that each camp could only be as wide as the Levites but could go as long as needed.
Now, climb inside of an imaginary helicopter and let's go back in time. We are going to fly over this site. What do you think we see from the air? A Cross! Are you kidding me? Nope, do the math.
Still think the Old Testament is outdated? Jesus didn't. As a matter of fact, I can't prove it, but I believe He started with these two things and shared them with the two disciples on the road to Emmaus. Maybe? Either way, the Old Testament is full of Jesus. When you witness or "give an answer to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you", be ready. Have your ducks in a row.
This Bible is real and its author is real. The things that the world will tell you is not true, is true. Our place is not to argue, but to share. Share this with someone and watch their eyes light up. Mine did!