For the last 20 weeks, I have been reading through the key chapters of the Bible and I am thrilled that over 400 of you have joined me in this journey.
We started with fun stories of Creation, Noah, the Red Sea, and the Battle of Jericho. But this week we are chin deep in II Kings and the major and minor prophets of the Old Testament (OT). Sigh...
Brutal and Confusion
If you have read any of the tiny books at the end of the OT you know that they could be compared to books written in a foreign language and the gruesome details are brutal at best.
Each morning I fight the temptation to jump to the New Testament where the stories give me the warm fuzzies and the miracles are inspiring. My head screams, “I really like the New Testament stories of Jesus’ love, but I can pass on the Old Testament stories of God’s judgment.”
But each time I make the motion to skip ahead in my chronological reading, I am reminded of three truths.
- Each chapter in the Bible is inspired and purposeful.
- The God of the Old Testament is the same God of the New.
- Laziness with get me no where.
Inspired and Purposeful
All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the servant of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.2 Timothy 3:16-17
These verses remind me that God didn’t make a mistake when the Bible was formed. Each verse that I don’t understand or find barbaric was placed in the Bible so that I can be thoroughly equipped for the work that God has for me. Ignoring the parts that are hard or don’t immediately give me chills leaves holes in my training as God’s servant.
Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever.Hebrews 13:8
For generations people have been confused by the “angry” God of the OT and the “loving” God of the New. And in reading through the last portion of the OT, I understand.
But if we look at the Bible as a whole, Genesis and Exodus are filled with examples of God’s love, protection, and grace for His people. We also see Jesus’ wrath in the Temple (Matthew 21:12-13) and the shocking deaths of Ananias and Sapphira (Acts 5:1-11).
Also we are reminded in the NT that God doesn’t change (James 1:17, Hebrews 13:8). He is always loving and gracious, but because of His holiness judgment will occur for past, present, and future sin.
Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for human masters.Colossians 3:23
Journeying through the Old Testament is hard. It takes extra time to read commentaries and decipher what God has for me in each passage. But it is in the deep searching that God reveals Himself to me. My lazy attitude is a reflection of how much I need God to change my heart.
Whether you are reading through the Key Chapters of the Bible Chronological Study or studying the Bible on your own, don’t give up. Dive deep into the Old and New Testament expecting God to show you more about His character. Your honest time will never fall void.