Why is the Old Testament still important to modern Christians?
Since the Old Testament is a religious book of Judaism, do we as Christians need to study the Old Testament? Yes, we do. Because the New Testament is based on the Old Testament.
Without the Old Testament, we cannot understand many deeds that Jesus has done for us. The Old Testament is like a teacher which guides us to know Jesus better. (Galatians )
Without the concept of blood and redemption of sin in the Old Testament, we would not be able to understand why Jesus needs to shed blood after his death.
Without the concept of sin entering into this world through one man; Adam, we cannot understand why Jesus needs to be born from a virgin.
Without the concept of offering of the unblemished sheep, we cannot comprehend why Jesus needs to go through examinations by the Sanhedrin and the Roman government, to be proven sinless.
We need the Old Testament to prove that Jesus was the prophesied Messiah.
His birth through a virgin.
The place of his birth.
How he dies on the cross.
The place of his burial.
There are more than 300 prophecies concerning Jesus in the Old Testament.
God uses the Old Testament to teach many people in the history. God’s word is set up in heaven and will never be changed through time. (Ps 119). The teaching of the OT also can be applied to the believers throughout all generations to come.
We learn about the characteristics of God from OT.
He is a holy God who cannot tolerate evil.
He is a righteous God who will reward the good and punish the evil.
He is a merciful God who will save His people from their sins.
We learn how to lead a life on earth.
The Bible describes the failures and success of the saints so that we can learn from their good points and shun away from their bad points.
Through the Mosaic Law, we learn what to eat, how to worship God, and the hygiene Law.
We learn about the will of God from the Old Testament.
Introduction of the Old Testament.
The OT has 39 books. The primary language is written in Hebrew with some Aramaic. It consists of about 30 authors. Their professions include prophets, kings, farmers, scribes, Politicians, priests and etc. From the 1st book to the last book of the OT, it spans for about 1000 years.
The first book was written about 3400 years ago and the last book, Malachi, about 400 BC. There are some proofs also show that book of Job is as old as book of Gen.
The OT includes Torah which is the history of Israel, book of wisdom, and the Prophets’ writings. The Old Testament was later became known as the Hebrew Bible or the Masoretic text. Now the Jews called it “Tanakh” which is the combined words and is recorded in Luke 24. Tanahk comprised of Torah which is known as the Laws or the Pentateuch, Neviim which is known as the prophets and Khtuvim which is known as the writings. These are the early versions of manuscripts.
The Old Testament of the Bible is translated from the Masoretic text. This is a Hebrew text preserved by the Masoretic scribes. They were responsible for adding vowels to help with pronunciation - so that the correct vocalization was not lost.
The arrange order of Hebrew Bible is as following.