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Old Testament Summary

A Summary of the Old Testament .The Book of Genesis The book of “beginnings” is attributed to Moses between 1450-1410 BC. It not only delineates the ancestry of the Jewish people but also sets the stage for the ongoing revelation of Jesus as the promised Messiah. This revelation is based upon the exposition of two major themes that run throughout the Old and New Testaments. There is, first of all, the concept of choosing a people who are to be Jehovah’s representatives in this realm to carry out
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  A Summary of the Old Testament. The Book of Genesis The book of “beginnings” is attributed to Moses between 1450-1410 BC. It not only delineates theancestry of the Jewish people but also sets the stage for the ongoing revelation of Jesus as the promisedMessiah. This revelation is based upon the exposition of two major themes that run throughout the Oldand New Testaments. There is, first of all, the concept of choosing a people who are to be Jehovah’srepresentatives in this realm to carry out the plan of redemption. As His people they must be madeacceptable and freed from the bondage of sin. His adoption is secured by the price Jesus pays on thecross. Second there is the powerful concept of the blood covenant. Jehovah’s promises to His people willalways be ratified by the shedding of blood. So too is the promise to redeem us ratified with the blood of the Savior. . The Book of Exodus Exodus was written by Moses to the Jewish people between 1450-1410 BC. The need for salvation ismade clear in Exodus. The family of Jacob is rather dysfunctional-his sons cannot abide the blessingsbestowed on their brother Joseph and so they sell into slavery. Ultimately the slavery of the family leadsto the slavery of an entire nation. Moses, the deliverer, and a picture of Jesus, sets the people free andthrough the giving of the Law, the establishing of a priesthood, and the institution of feasts they are shownthe further distance they must travel to be worthy of real freedom. The lesson is that they cannot keepthe laws and statutes given to them, and must look for another deliverer to make an eternal end of their captivity.  Page 2 of 16 . The Book of Leviticus Leviticus was written by Moses to the Jewish people between 1450-1410 BC. It can be excruciating toread if one lacks a fundamental insight into God’s Law. The long passages about animal sacrifice, theinordinate amount of punishment for transgressions, require some understanding. The critical insight isthat the law is not about punishment, but restitution. When man’s actions diminish the holiness of God’sorder it must be restored. What is taken must be replaced. When an ox is killed, the owner must receivea new one and compensation for his loss. If a life is taken, the one who took it must put “life” back bygiving his own. An understanding of this concept turns a book full of gory details into a humblingdescription of what Jesus did for us by making restitution for all that our sinful nature has done to diminishthe holiness of God’s order. . The Book of Numbers Numbers was written by Moses to the Jewish people between 1450-1410 BC. Disobedience to Godcarries a price. This is an important lesson. Some perspectives on grace suggest that it does away withthe consequences of sin, that the blood covers our faults to the extent that we are alleviated from therepercussions of our bad decisions. While grace certainly is a covering, Numbers seems to suggest thatcertain consequences are built into the actions themselves. Murmuring, complaining, failing to heed other tenets of God’s law…..all will turn an “11-day” journey into a “40-year” nightmare. Once we learn our lesson however, His promises remain and the blessings of obedience still available to us.  Page 3 of 16 . The Book of Deuteronomy It was written by Moses to the Jewish people between 1450-1410 BC. This is a book of remembering.Repeatedly we are encouraged to ‘remember’ what the word of the Lord has said. The literal meaning of ‘remember’ is to put something “back together”. If we remember an event we are putting the experienceback together to relive it in our minds. God’s covenant promises must be put back together in the life of the believer as we attain to the new creation that 2 Corinthians 5:17 says that we are. We are in realityseated with Jesus in heavenly places but must ‘remember’ this spiritual reality in order to have it manifesteach day. . The Book of Joshua Joshua is credited with authorship between 1400 - 1370 BC. This book catalogs the taking of the landof Canaan. “Meditate on the Word day and night”. That passage provides the thread that holds together the movement of the children of Israel into the Promised Land. Each time they ask the Lord for guidance,and heed what they are told, they are victorious. When they choose to decide for themselves how toproceed, they are either defeated or merely break even. This is a great lesson for us as believers. Wemust seize the new creation that we already have been made. We must fight to control the ‘land’ from thepassions and desires entrenched therein. When we heed the guidance of the Holy Ghost we will alwayswin. When we got it alone, breaking even is the best we can hope for. . The Judges Samuel is the most likely author somewhere between 1050-1000 BC. Judges is a pivotal book in the storyof Jewish people. It seems that God never wanted us to have any ruler but Him. To be a kingdom pf priests implies that the “government” is truly “on his shoulders” and it is unnecessary (perhaps even  Page 4 of 16 dangerous) to have any intermediary at all. The disobedience that occurs seems to be the initial woundin the relationship between these chosen people and their God. Even among the seventeen judges onlya few are noteworthy, and even among the noteworthy there are the same painful tendencies towardsdisobedience, lack of trust, or selfishness. This is pivotal for us as believers in that we too must allowobedience to the real judge be the hallmark of our faith. . The Book of Ruth Samuel is the most likely author somewhere around 1000 BC. Ruth is a beautiful picture of the extentof God’s grace upon those who are not yet His “children” and His desire to lead them to Himself. Itappears that this book is set at the general time of Passover when the barley is being harvested. This onlyadds to the sense of symbolism and the revealing of the salvation plan. Ruth, who is not one of Hischildren, develops a loyalty to Naomi. Boaz eventually becomes Ruth’s kinsman redeemer, a clear typeof Jesus himself. This loyalty leads redemption and adoption. . The Book 1 st Samuel Written by Samuel in 930 BC (and probably finished by Gad or Nathan), David’s election as King standsout among the other themes and provides an object lesson in so many ways. First, there are crucial lifelessons. He is chosen as King but has to endure the humiliation of allowing an undeserving Saul to reignin his stead. David has learned that to possess authority in his life he must exhibit it-even if the persondoesn’t warrant the respect. Second there are invaluable spiritual lessons. Despite his being chosen, heis still a pretty wretched fellow. But his response to his sin is to own up to it and not make excuses for hisbehavior. Third, there are touching emotional lessons. In his “personal holiness” he is honest and openwith God. In the depth of his fear, frustration, and human arrogance, he is the same person.
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