“That’s just that old Jewish stuff” I’ve been told, as have others who know that there should not be a break between the Old and New Testaments, both of which were written by “holy men of God (who) spoke as they were move by the Holy Spirit” (2 Pet. 1:21). What most church people do not understand is that Matthew picks up where Malachi leaves off. Malachi pointed to the future of the church. The next thing written about that future was Jesus stepping onto the world scene in order to initiate it. However, most people in the modern church do not believe that the Old Testament is relevant for today’s more enlightened parishioner. That old Jewish stuff, they maintain, has no place in their lives. However, the writers of the New Testament, especially the Apostle Paul, paint a totally different picture. In 1 Corinthians chapter 10 we find the Paul–God’s primary New Testament writer–warning the New Testament Church not to disobey what the Lord had taught them through the apostles as had their ancestors who had disobeyed what He had taught them through the prophets. After listing several ways in which the Israelites of old had disobeyed God, Paul reminded them of how He had punished them. Question: Who is this “He,” this God to which Paul was referring? He tells us in verse 4 that the Israelites wandering in the desert were fed by “that spiritual Rock that followed them, and that Rock was CHRIST.” In verses six through ten Paul reminded them that by disobeying their God, Israel of old had “tempted JESUS.” I prove in the series titled The God of the Old Testament that the One who came to earth as Jesus Christ was the God of the Old Testament Who dealt face-to-face with Adam and Eve, Cain, Able, Noah, Abraham, etc. In one case He (Christ) responded to those who rebelled against Him by having them “destroyed by serpents” (1 Cor. 10:9). The adult Israelite population had murmured against Him and it had cost them their promised inheritance–the Holy Land. Others had murmured against Him and had been “destroyed by the destroyer” (1 Cor. 10:10). In the next verse Paul summarized his teachings on the importance of the Old Testament by telling the New Testament Church: “Now these things happened to them (ancient Israel) as examples (for us), and were recorded for OUR INSTRUCTION. He then identifies who “our” is. It is the generation “upon whom the ends of the world has come”–THE END TIME CHURCH. GOD RECORDED HIS DEALINGS WITH ISRAEL–HIS “CHURCH IN THE (PHYSICAL) WILDERNESS OF SINAI (ACTS 7:38)–TO SERVE AS “TEACHING MOMENTS” FOR THEIR BIOLOGICAL AND SPIRITUAL DESCENDANTS–THE NEW TESTAMENT CHURCH WHICH NOW WALLOWS IN THE SPIRITUAL WILDERNESS OF HER OWN CREATION. Question: If Christ’s dealings with ancient Israel [His “church in the wilderness” led by the “Angel” Who had spoken to them from Mt. Sinai–Jesus Christ–(Acts 7:38)] has no bearing on Modern Israel [the church–“the Israel of God (Gal. 6:16)], why did Paul tie the two together in Galatians 6:16 and 1 Corinthians 10:9-11? “Come, let us reason together,” says the Lord. “Can two walk together unless they agree? He asks. Honest Truth-seekers will allow God to reason with them and, being reasonable people in search of His Truth, will walk in agreement with Him.
Though few in the Institutional Church will admit it, most agree with a Texas pastor who admitted in the local newspaper that, though the Bible is God’s Truth, he and his congregation “… are stepping outside of the Bible for truth.” A local pastor, after admitting that the Bible was God’s Truth, declared that he and his church were going in another direction. And why not? According to church standards, they are all saved and born again. God was right, Satan has deceived the whole world (Rev. 12:9). L.J.