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 The Importance of the Old Testament

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PostSubject: The Importance of the Old Testament   Mon Mar 29, 2010 6:30 am

There has been much discussion about the differences between Old and New Testaments in Theological circles. Some have, quite correctly, pointed out the differences, while others, also quite correctly, indicated that we should not just discard the Old Testament. As one who sees both sides of this discussion, I thought that maybe I should write about this subject. When I started to read the book of Lamentations, the thought became an urge. So, this is the result.

Lamentations is the lamenting of Jeremiah over the city of Jerusalem. I believe it was Jeremiah that was called the "crying prophet." My quote comes from the New Century Version.

Starting with chapter 1, verse 1. "Jerusalem once full of people, but now the city is empty. Jerusalem was once a great city among the nations, but now she is like a widow. She was like a queen of all the other cities, but now she is a slave. She cries loudly at night, and tears are on her cheeks. There is no one to comfort her, all who loved her are gone. All her friends have turned against her and are now her enemies. Judah has gone into captivity where she suffers and works hard. She lives among other nations, but she has found no rest. Those who chased her caught her when she was in trouble. The roads to Jerusalem are sad, because no one comes for the feasts. No one passes through her gates. Her priests groan, her young women are suffering, and Jerusalem suffers terribly. Her foes are now her masters. Her enemies enjoy the wealth they have taken. The LORD is punishing her for her many sins. Her children have gone away as captives of the enemy." (Quote ended with verse 5)

Recently, I saw a sermon series on the the book of Judges preached by David Jeremiah on "Turning Point." I learned a lot about how Israel would become wicked and sinful, then God would raise up an army in another country and send that army to punish Israel. When Israel was sufficiently punished, for the sake of the faithful remnant, God would raise up a deliverer to deliver Israel out of the hands of their enemies. This went on seven times throughout the book of Judges. Probably the most famous of these deliverers is Samson.

In the history and prophecy portions of the Old Testament we often read about Israels' sinfulness and what was or will befall her. The prophets that told them of their impending doom were ignored or killed.

Psalm 33:12 [NKJV] "Blessed is the nation whose God is the LORD, and the people whom He has chosen as His own inheritance." Proverbs 14:34 [NKJV] "Righteous exalts a nation, but sin is a reproach to any people."

Why are these Old Testament passages, and others like them, important to us today? They show God's great blessings upon a nation that is obedient to Him. They also show what happens to a nation that turns it's back on God. This should be of particular interest to those of us who live in the United States. Our history shows the blessings God has bestowed upon us. Today, there is much evidence that we are a nation that has turned it's back on God. We have great sinfulness in this country. Abortion, the slaughter of innocent unborn babies now numbering in the tens of millions. Homosexuality, which God called an "abomination," (Leviticus 18:22) is becoming more acceptable in society. Many are just plain indifferent. Yet, according to various polls in recent years, more than 80% say they believe in God. Our new President (Obama) claims to believe in God, yet, upon taking office he signed an executive order to the effect that the U.S. will now pay for overseas abortions. During the campaign he indicated he would support the homosexual agenda. And the American people just yawned and voted for him.

It is evident that the Bush administration lied to the American people to take us to war in Iraq. Some of us knew he was lying. At the time Bush had overwhelming support from the American people. The government can't even obey their own rules. The Constitution plainly states that Congress has the power to declare war, not the President. (see Article I, Section 8 of the U.S. Constitution)

The United States has become an evil nation, and that should concern us in light of what we see in the Old Testament concerning the nation that turns its back on God and His principles.

I know it's not popular to say, but 9/11 should have been a wake up call to bring this nation to repentance. Hurricane Katrina should have been a wake up call to the Gulf coast states and in particular, New Orleans. I have learned that New Orleans was planning a "gay pride day" the weekend after Katrina hit. Scriptures teach us that God is in control of the weather.

That is why, in my opinion, the Old Testament is important to us today. The sinfulness of America is great, I've just gone into a little bit. There is a lot more.

As Christians we should understand that the Old Testament is a learning tool. It has no saving power. Salvation is in Christ, and Christ alone. But, there is so much we can learn from the Old Testament.

It has been said, "Those who do not learn history are doomed to repeat it." I don't know who originated that saying, but it is so true.

I would like for God to bless America, but if He is true to His Word, I don't see how He can, unless America repents.

Crying or Very sad
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