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Why We Need Both The Old And New Testament

Some Christians say we don’t need the Old Testament because it is not relevant. However, without the Old, the New would make no sense at all. The Old is a history of the world in need of a Savior. The New Testament provides the answer in the person of Christ. The New tells how the prophesied person of the Old Testament came into the world. As a whole both Testaments express the fallen nature of humanity, but the provision of restoration and salvation.

There is, however, another angle to all of this that I recently came across in a book I read. The Old and New Testament mirror each other. Together, they show God’s sovereign plan for humanity from the beginning of time to the end of time. This was shown as a triangle in the book, but I will express it in linear form.

  • JESUS reigns over it all as shown in Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John.
  • The Old Covenant in Genesis 12 to Malachi mirrors the New Covenant in Acts to Jude.
  • One world government in Genesis 10-11 mirrors the one world government in Rev. 6-19.
  • The world judged and destroyed in Genesis 6-9 mirrors the world judged and destroyed in Revelation 6-19.
  • Satan and sin entering in Genesis 3-5 mirrors Satan and sin exiting in Revelation 20.
  • God and righteous people in paradise in Genesis 1-2 mirrors God and redeemed people in paradise in Revelation 20-22.

There you have it. One can see how the Old and New Testament fit together like hand and glove. You can’t have one without the other. To say that the Old Testament is no longer necessary or relevant is refuted by the above. On the other hand, there are those who put too much emphasis on the Old Testament, especially the Torah, the first five books from Genesis to Deuteronomy. There needs to be a healthy balance in teaching the two Testaments. They both have valuable insight for living the Christian life, and for leading a person to the saving grace of Christ.

In both the Old and New Testaments, there is only one Redeemer and Savior. Compare Isaiah 44:6“Thus says the Lord, King of Israel, and his redeemer, the Lord of hosts, ‘I am the first and the last; besides me there is no god’”, with Acts 4:12 which says, “There is salvation in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved.”

The central theme of the entire Bible, from the first verse of Genesis to the last verse of Revelation, is God and his interaction with the human race. Yes, the Bible is full of violence and immorality, because that is the outward manifestation of a sinful nature living apart from God. It also has stories of people who are very righteous and religious but do not have a relationship with God. The Bible shows both the grace and judgment of God. But in the final analysis, we need both the Old and New Testaments to reveal to us the sinfulness of our hearts in need of forgiveness, redemption, and salvation through God’s Son, Jesus Christ. 

About John Clark

John Livingston Clark is 74 years of age and lives in central Washington State. He has written two published books, and two published poems. His initial book is called, " God's Healing Hope: Breaking the Strongholds of Wrong Thinking." His second book, released in December of 2016, is a motivational book written to seniors titled, " Seniors: Are You Retiring or Recharging?" Both books are available on amazon. You can also view his writings on www.faithwriters.com. His “Poem For Senior Citizens” is in the 5th spot on FW.

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4 comments

  1. John,
    Great points, and good message about OT and NT.
    All connected and all pertaining to life and our salvation, from beginning to end. Both equally important overall.
    Thank you for sharing this great article.
    God Bless~

  2. The Old Testament explains who God is and His creativity in laying out the foundation and order of the world; so taking that away than truth is buried and where do people hang their faith upon? No, it is relevant! It is like the story of building your life on sand or on a rock.
    Then you have the evolutionist making false claims whereby it would be an easier pathway to promote their ideology without much argument. Or the atheist who say there is no God would have fewer contestants if the Old Testament was dismissed by those who go to church and had an attitude of indifference about this way of thinking.
    The Old Testament tells us that He has made a promise to mankind that He would personally destroy sin. God being holy, requires of us to be holy too in order to come into His kingdom so He gave us His Ten Commandments to self- evaluate ourselves We wouldn’t see our moral decay without these standards. It was given to show us a mirror of our corrupt ways and that we couldn’t measure up as a result. Good works don’t remove or cancel our sinfulness and a Holy God cannot accept anyone who thinks that they can make up for their transgressions by this method or trying to be religious.
    And of course, the prophetic messages that would be used to reveal those promises He was giving to specific people for the future fulfillment of how He was going to do it revealed in the New Testament.

  3. One thing I failed to mention in my article is that prophecies in the Old Testament validate the inspiration of the Bible. Not only were some of those prophecies fulfilled in the New Testament times, but many are being fulfilled right now in our current events. The Old Testament (and New) is the only piece of literature in history that foretells the future fulfilled to the exact detail.

  4. excellent john

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