What is the difference between the Old and New Testaments?

We don’t see a major difference in the Old and New Testament, in that they complete each other. The Old Testament was meant to prepare the Israelites for the coming of the Messiah.  This is a critical portion for the plan of Salvation. The Messiah would offer Himself as a sacrifice for our sin (1 John 2:2).

The New Testament presents to us the life of Jesus Christ as the Messiah. It shows us how we are to respond to His gift of eternal life and live our lives in gratitude to His love (Romans 12).

The Old Testament

The Old Testament [OT] teaches that man was separated from God through sin (Genesis 3). In the New Testament [NT] we learn that man can be restored in his relationship to God (Romans 3-6). The Passover lamb in OT (Ezra 6:20) becomes the Lamb of God in the NT (John 1:29). The book of Hebrews describes how Jesus is the true High Priest and how His one sacrifice replaces all OT animal sacrifices, which were mere foreshadowings.

The New Testament

The New Testament records many of the fulfilled prophecies that were recorded hundreds of years earlier in the Old Testament. The OT declares the giving of God’s Law, and the NT shows how Christ gives us His grace in order to keep the Law (Philippians 4:13). In the OT God’s dealings are mainly with Israel (Exodus 19:6). While, in the NT we see God’s dealings are mainly with His church – spiritual Israel (Galatians 3:29).

The Bible

Both testaments reveal the same holy, merciful, and righteous God who must condemn sin. However, He desires bring to Himself a fallen human race of sinners through the forgiveness only possible through Christ’s atoning sacrifice. In both testaments, we see how God reveals Himself to us and how we are to come to Him through Jesus Christ. We also find all we need for eternal life and godly living (2 Timothy 3:15-17). The Old and New Testaments are complimentary to each other.

Some people reject the Old Testament and claim that it is done away with, but Jesus and the disciples based all their teachings on it.

  • “And beginning at Moses and all the prophets, He [Jesus] expounded unto them in all the Scriptures the things concerning Himself” (Luke 24:27)
  • “For he [Apollos] vigorously refuted the Jews publicly, showing from the Scriptures that Jesus is the Christ” (Acts 18:28)
  • “Think not that I [Jesus] am come to destroy the law, or the prophets: I am not come to destroy, but to fulfil. For verily I say unto you, till heaven and earth pass, one jot or one tittle shall in no wise pass from the law, till all be fulfilled” (Matthew 5:17, 18)

Christians must not reject the Old Testament.

“All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness” (2 Timothy 3:16).

The entire Bible is the information and operations manual for a human life.

In His service,
BibleAsk Team

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