Why the Old Testament Still Matters

See the source image

Reading the Bible is paramount for the believer who wants to live and walk as Jesus did – after all, that is the purpose for our salvation – “to be conformed to the likeness of [God’s] Son” (Romans 8:27). I’ll bet you have started trying to read through the whole Bible and found it to be more challenging than you thought. Especially in the Old Testament – especially in Leviticus! What do all those old rules and sacrifices and rituals have to do with us as New Testament believers? EVERYTHING!

The entire Old Testament looks ahead to Jesus Christ. He fulfills every promise and completes every command. In Genesis He is the Seed of the woman who will one day crush the head of Satan. In Exodus, He is the Passover Lamb and the one who leads His people out of bondage .In Leviticus, He is the great high priest and the perfect sacrifice. In Deuteronomy he is the Great Prophet to come. In Joshua, He is the Captain of the Lord’s host.

In Judges, He is the one who faithfully delivers His people from the cost of the sin. In Ruth, He is our Kinsman Redeemer. He is the anointed King in the line of David in the books of Samuel. In the books of the Kings, He is the Spirit filling the Temple. He is the great Teacher in Ezra and the Rebuilder of broken walls in Nehemiah. He is the Interceder for His people in Esther and the coming Redeemer in Job.

He is the Shepherd in Psalms and the Source of all wisdom in Proverbs. He is the Beloved Bridegroom in the Song of Solomon. In Isaiah He is the Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace and Suffering Servant. In Jeremiah and Lamentations He is the Man acquainted with sorrows. In Ezekiel He brings life to dry bones. In Daniel He is the Ancient of Days.

He is the faithful Husband in Hosea, the Hope of HIs people in Joel, the Judge of the nations in Amos, and in Obadiah the One who warns of coming judgment. In Jonah He is the preacher of the Good News, in Micah He is the Ruler from Bethlehem. In Nahum, He is the judge of His people’s enemy, the Sovereign Lord in Habakkuk and in Zephaniah He is the God who is mighty to save. In Haggai He is the Glory of the House of God, in Zechariah He is the Royal Priest and in Malachi Jesus is the Son of Righteousness.

When you read the Old Testament, always look for Jesus, He is on every page, in every verse. Then read the New Testament with a fresh understanding of Jesus who was and is and is to come.

The Face in the Mirror

See the source image

“He has taken me to the banquet hall and his banner over me is love” (Song of Songs 2:4). 
As we settled into our home, we started hanging pictures.  My husband spotted a mirror I had set aside and asked me where I wanted to hang it.  I said, “Nowhere that I can see my reflection – I don’t like looking at myself.”  When I look in the mirror I see age and weight and baggy eyes.  I see dark circles and wrinkles, many brought on by anxious moments and sleepless nights.  These are on the surface, but their roots go deep and remind me of the mistakes I’ve made and the sins I’ve committed, the things I did that I wish I hadn’t done, and the things I didn’t do that I wish I had.  I identify myself by my failures and faults, and I imagine that God does too.  I know I’m not the only one.  I read your posts and hear your hearts.
But here’s what the Lord spoke to me recently: “Satan has convinced you that you wear your mistakes, your past, your failures and sins like a banner across your chest and that I am judging you by that banner, but he is a liar. The only banner I see when I look at you is my banner of love.”   That banner is the blood-red flag of mercy hanging from the top of the cross.  And Jesus stands with us before the Father saying “This is my beloved – isn’t she beautiful!”
All my wrinkles and bags and extra pounds are still there, but because of Jesus Christ, the only thing that shows in heaven’s mirror is God’s redeeming love.  Beloved, that’s the truth about the reflection in your mirror too.