-The Old Scriptures -
To realize why the Bible is relevant today and still valuable as the most fundamental source of information about God.
Rom 8:28 , Rom 11:25, Psalms 93:2 & 90:2 , Jer 10:10, Rom 1:23 , Isa 48:12, Heb 7:16, Isa 40:6 ,Psalms 119:89, 152 , Heb 7:25
References: Packers "Knowing God", chapter 7
We are told the Bible is the word of God .. so we start to read and we find that the events recorded in the most even recent scripture take place long ago. Christ came, died, rose and returned to heaven almost 2000 years ago. Even the book of Revelation was written some 1900 years ago. The Old testament is 5000-6000 (some say 10,000) years old. The whole of scripture was written in a time when men thought the world was flat and the earth was the center of the universe.
The Back Door:
The question is therefore raised, how can anything from this long ago be relevant or applicable today? Indeed one often feels a sense of remoteness when he reads from the Bible.
-> Add some of your own views, look up the following verses and consider the associated points.
Did you know that Cain and Abel lived in a world where animals did not eat each other (compare Gen 1:29 to Gen 9:1-3)
Job knew world with creatures that don't exist anymore ( Job chapter 41)
Students Teach Students:
Many people find such a sense of remoteness when reading scripture that they look for newer revelations from God. Others "cherry pick" things they like from newer religions and then build their own concept of God. They ask "Why should we hold to the Bible, what so special about it?
How would you answer them?
Key message: The best answer to these questions I have found is this, The God whom the people of the past had to deal with is the same God we have to deal with. Exactly the same God. For God is immutable, his character does not change.
Lets explore the scriptural basis for this claim
1. Gods life does not change. Created things have a beginning and an end. God has neither. He always was and always will be.
- Psalms 93:2 & 90:2, Jer 10:10, Rom 1:23, Isa 48:12
2. Gods character does not change. Many things change the character of man. These include age, stress, love and sexual motivations. Gods character is uniform. Now this does not mean God always acts in just one way such as always being loving or always being angry. It means that He reacts consistently to things.
- James 1:17
3. Gods truth does not change. Men often say things that they don't mean. They also have a habit of changing their mind. This is not so with God.
- Isa 40:8 - Psalms 119:89, 152
4. What God likes and dislikes does not change. What He desires and what He hates does not change. God still hates the sins of His people and uses all kinds of discipline to encourage them to be obedient and turn from sin.. God still loves the fellowship of his people and gives them both sorrows and joys that they might seek Him and come to detach their love from things and attach it to Him.
- Matt 5:17, 1 Peter 1:6-9, 2 Cor 1:8-10
5. Gods purpose does not change. God was refining men and saving those who would believe in Him long ago and He is still doing it now.
- Rom 8:28 - Rom 11:25
6. Gods Son does not change. His gift of salvation transcends time. All of the old testament looks forward to Christ and all of the new testament is based on Christ..
- Heb 7:25 and 13:8
God is the same now as He was then. His words are true and His message timeless. Remember this when you read the "old scriptures".