“Morning by morning, O Lord, you hear my voice”
The Interwoven Testaments
(Please read Romans 15:3)
Many people will tell you that the New Testament includes all we need to know in order to be saved and it’s a waste of time to study the Old. And, to justify that position, they may talk about how hard it is to pronounce most of those names, how repetitive some of it is, and how the modern mind just can’t relate to, say, Leviticus and the two books of Chronicles.
It’s disappointing that anyone relegates the Old Testament to the shelf and regards it as useless. That’s diametrically opposed to the conviction of Paul as shown by our text. And Paul’s declaration came right after he had quoted from the Old Testament. (See Romans 15:3 and Psalm 69:9.)
Picture what the Bible would be like if the New Testament writers had shunned the Old. Large portions of the epistles would not have been written, and much of the gospel accounts would be unintelligible. To see why, look at the two Testaments just as they are and try, for example, to imagine how anyone could understand Romans or Hebrews without some knowledge of the Old Testament. The fact is that the Old and New Testaments are so interwoven that you can’t understand either one without the other.
The Old Testament provides valuable evidence for the divinity of Christ and gives many examples of good and bad in people and the consequences of their behavior. It provides comfort, encouragement and hope, and it teaches patience. If you have trouble with its names or details or repetitiveness, even the exercise of reading it will require and increase that last quality.