“For whatsoever things were written aforetime were written for our learning, that we through patience and comfort of the scriptures might have hope.” Romans 15:4
Then there is the charge given to Timothy and this by way of him to us, to every believer, but especially to those who are called as teachers, pastors, evangelists, prophets and apostles for the perfecting of the saints.
“All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness: That the man of God may be perfect, thoroughly furnished unto all good works. I charge theetherefore before God, and the Lord Jesus Christ, who shall judge the quick and the dead at his appearing and his kingdom; preach the word; be instant in season, out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort with all longsuffering and doctrine.” Timothy 3:16-4:2
The Word of God is given to us not merely as a resource manual or believer’s handbook to check when we need to troubleshoot some area of our lives as we would an appliance that is malfunctioning. Certainly it is useful for those purposes and should be our “go to” resource for all matters pertaining to our lives. But it is more than that. It is actually a living, dynamic depository of everything needful for life now and the promise, indeed the assurance of things to come.
The Old and the New Testaments have been given to us to profit from knowing and doing what is commanded of us within their pages. Jesus said that He came to fulfill the Law and He did. He also affirmed through the apostles that we are not living under the Law any longer, but we are living by grace through faith in Jesus Christ, by whom we are saved.
So what then is the purpose of the Law? What is the purpose of the Old Testament? That is, what is the function of the Old Covenant to our lives today?
The Old and the New Testaments are given to us to learn of God, of His ways, of His character and to learn the lessons of life so we don’t repeat the same errors, transgressions, trespasses and sins of those who have gone before us.
We need to know how God dealt with Adam and Eve so we know why the world is in such a state of violence, corruption and destruction. We need to know about the men and women mentioned by name in the “faith hall of fame” in Hebrews 11 so that we can understand how God brought His covenant people through hard times and how God led them and empowered them in their faith to endure such trials and overcome such enormous opposition to themselves for the sake of the truth of who Jesus was and is today. We need to study the Kings and Prophets to see how men, (not gods or demi gods) but average, everyday people succeeded or failed in their lives and why they did so, so we can follow their example toward success and avoid the same temptations and schemes the enemy used to ensnare them, so that we do not fail to fulfill God’s call on our lives.
We need to study to show ourselves approved unto God as workman who do not need to be ashamed, uncertain, timid or insecure when proclaiming the Gospel of Jesus Christ, because by knowing, believing and doing the will of God we are able to rightly expound on the Word of Truth — God by the Holy Spirit giving us revelation and insight to the mystery of faith and the Gospel of Jesus Christ.
If we were fortunate enough to grew up in an home and/or a church, school or community where the Word of God was taught and lived everyday we are blessed indeed, because, as adults we are now able to build on that foundation and go deeper into the hidden mysteries of salvation through faith in Jesus Christ.
So in the coming weeks we will look at the Kings; over Israel through the divided kingdoms of Judah in the south and Israel in the north, to the reunited kingdom during the reign of David and then the ultimate division between Judah and Israel that came about after the death of Solomon and remains to the day. We will see how God has promised to restore the kingdom of Israel as one nation of Jews and Christians in one body under one King, Jesus Christ the Messiah, the Lamb of God seated on His throne forever.