A National Covenant (OT Interpretation #2)

In the last post we discussed the difficulty of harmonizing the Old and New Testaments in the Bible. We mentioned that throughout history there have been a few main ways to attempt to reconcile these two sections of the Bible which seem to be at odds on many points. Basically there is the Jewish way, the Gnostic way and the Christian way. The Jewish way says that Jesus was a teacher of the Law of Moses. The Gnostic way says that the Old Testament was written by an inferior god. And the Christian way which says that Jesus fulfills the Old Testament Scriptures.

The heart of the Old Testament is the Law of Moses. So in order to understand how the Old and the New Covenants can be reconciled we should start with an understanding of the nature of that Law. In this post we will discuss some various ways of looking at the Torah (i.e. first 5 books of the Bible).

The Constitution of Israel

1 Now the LORD had said to Abram: “Get out of your country, From your family And from your father’s house, To a land that I will show you. 2 I will make you a great nation; I will bless you And make your name great; And you shall be a blessing. 3 I will bless those who bless you, And I will curse him who curses you; And in you all the families of the earth shall be blessed.” 

– Genesis 12:1-3 NKJV

In Genesis 12 God promises Abraham that he would make his descendants into a great nation. And He was going to use that nation to be a blessing to all the nations of the world. The first aspect of this promise points to the creation of the nation of Israel. The second aspect points to the coming of the Messiah and the preaching of the Gospel of the kingdom of God to all nations (John 4:22, Galatians 3:15-20, Genesis 22:18).

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