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You can’t be a Christian if you don’t believe the Old Testament

By Pim Pendergrast, a Ph.D. in Theophysics

Many fluff-bunny liberal “Christians” will tell try to tell you the Old Testament doesn’t apply anymore. Many FBLC’s, it would seem, have arbitrarily decided the OT doesn’t apply anymore because they don’t understand it or don’t like it or are afraid to read it or view the “God of the OT” as cruel. Others believe it doesn’t apply simply because that’s what they’ve been taught by other “Christians.” But that’s not what Jesus taught and that’s not what the New Testament teaches. The God of the Old Testament is the God of the New.

The Books of Moses
If we go the beginning of the OT, we find the Books of Moses, Genesis through to Deuteronomy. What did Jesus say about the writings of Moses?

Jn 5:46-47 For had ye believed Moses, ye would have believed me: for he wrote of me. But if ye believe not his writings, how shall ye believe my words?

Moses wrote about Jesus. This means the Old Testament is like the New Testament because the authors of New Testament also wrote about Jesus. The Books of Moses are nothing for the Christian to be afraid of. If you believe Moses, you will believe Jesus. But you cannot reject the Books of Moses. If you do not believe Genesis through to Deuteronomy, if you don’t believe they apply, how can you believe Jesus? Let’s look at some examples of when Moses wrote about Jesus.

Num 21:5-9
5 And the people spake against God, and against Moses, Wherefore have ye brought us up out of Egypt to die in the wilderness? for [there is] no bread, neither [is there any] water; and our soul loatheth this light bread.
6 And the LORD sent fiery serpents among the people, and they bit the people; and much people of Israel died.
7 Therefore the people came to Moses, and said, We have sinned, for we have spoken against the LORD, and against thee; pray unto the LORD, that he take away the serpents from us. And Moses prayed for the people.
8 And the LORD said unto Moses, Make thee a fiery serpent, and set it upon a pole: and it shall come to pass, that every one that is bitten, when he looketh upon it, shall live.
9 And Moses made a serpent of brass, and put it upon a pole, and it came to pass, that if a serpent had bitten any man, when he beheld the serpent of brass, he lived.

Wait! This is about Jesus? Yes it is.

Jn 3:14 And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of man be lifted up:

Jesus also rebuked Nicodemus for not understanding the rebirth from the OT Scriptures (Jn 3:10). It would be very convenient for the FBLC if he could take out his scissors and cut the story of the brass serpent out of the Bible. After all, the “God of the New Testament” would never be so cruel as to send poisonous snakes to punish His own people for complaining they were starving and dying of thirst in the desert. But no, Jesus Himself says this story foretold His temporary death on the cross. Let’s look at another example.

Num 20:2-12
2 And there was no water for the congregation: and they gathered themselves together against Moses and against Aaron.
3 And the people chode with Moses, and spake, saying, Would God that we had died when our brethren died before the LORD!
4 And why have ye brought up the congregation of the LORD into this wilderness, that we and our cattle should die there?
5 And wherefore have ye made us to come up out of Egypt, to bring us in unto this evil place? it [is] no place of seed, or of figs, or of vines, or of pomegranates; neither [is] there any water to drink.
6 And Moses and Aaron went from the presence of the assembly unto the door of the tabernacle of the congregation, and they fell upon their faces: and the glory of the LORD appeared unto them.
7 And the LORD spake unto Moses, saying,
8 Take the rod, and gather thou the assembly together, thou, and Aaron thy brother, and speak ye unto the rock before their eyes; and it shall give forth his water, and thou shalt bring forth to them water out of the rock: so thou shalt give the congregation and their beasts drink.
9 And Moses took the rod from before the LORD, as he commanded him.
10 And Moses and Aaron gathered the congregation together before the rock, and he said unto them, Hear now, ye rebels; must we fetch you water out of this rock?
11 And Moses lifted up his hand, and with his rod he smote the rock twice: and the water came out abundantly, and the congregation drank, and their beasts [also].
12 And the LORD spake unto Moses and Aaron, Because ye believed me not, to sanctify me in the eyes of the children of Israel, therefore ye shall not bring this congregation into the land which I have given them.

So this story in which Moses is told he will die before the children of Israel enter the Promised Land because he struck the rock twice in anger is also about Jesus? According to Paul, yes.

1 Cor 10:4-6
4 And did all drink the same spiritual drink: for they drank of that spiritual Rock that followed them: and that Rock was Christ.
5 But with many of them God was not well pleased: for they were overthrown in the wilderness.
6 Now these things were our examples, to the intent we should not lust after evil things, as they also lusted.

Here Paul confirms Jesus’ words that Moses wrote about Him. Paul also tells us Moses was writing for the benefit of New Covenant believers, for Christians in his day. These things are our examples. Just as God wasn’t pleased with the children of Israel, even so He is displeased with many in the church. All the stories about God punishing the children of Israel in the wilderness, which the FBLC’s would like to ignore, apply to us today.

Moses gave the law. So what did Jesus say about the law?

Mat 5:17-18 Think not that I am come to destroy the law, or the prophets: I am not come to destroy, but to fulfil. For verily I say unto you, Till heaven and earth pass, one jot or one tittle shall in no wise pass from the law, till all be fulfilled.

It amazes me how many FBLC’s quote this passage claiming Jesus said he would abolish the law – as if “fulfil” is synonymous with “destroy” – when that’s the exact opposite of what He said. Jesus promises here that the law will endure until all is fulfilled. This is in line with Psalm 12:6-7.

The words of the LORD [are] pure words: [as] silver tried in a furnace of earth, purified seven times. Thou shalt keep them, O LORD, thou shalt preserve them from this generation for ever.

Jesus also speaks of the prophets. He didn’t come to destroy them either. But the law is instrumental in bringing people to Christ.

Gal 3:24Wherefore the law was our schoolmaster [to bring us] unto Christ, that we might be justified by faith.

So you don’t believe the OT. You’ve never read it. You think you’re a Christian? No way! How did you come to Christ, how have you been justified by faith, if you’ve never read the law?

The Historicity of the Books of Moses
The Books of Moses are historical. Many FBLC’s claim much of the OT is only allegorical; it’s not meant to be taken literally. But the NT passages I quoted above refer to the Exodus as a historical event. Genesis is probably the book most frequently undermined by FBLC’s. The world wasn’t created in six 24-hour days 6,000 years ago, they claim; Noah’s Flood wasn’t real. But the Genesis Creation account is treated as historical by NT writers (Jn 1:1-5; Heb 1:2-3; Mk 10:7; 1 Tim 2:14), as is the Flood account (Mat 24:37-39; Lk 17:26-27; Heb 11:7; 1 Pet 3:18-20; 2 Pet 2:4-10, which also confirms the historicity of Sodom and Gomorrah). 2 Peter 3:5-7 tells us the Genesis Flood was just as real as the destruction of the world by fire will be.

ALL Scripture
2 Tim 3:16 All scripture [is] given by inspiration of God, and [is] profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness:

Not just the NT, not just the law, not just the prophets; all Scripture is inspired by God and useful for the Christian. Bear in mind that when Paul wrote these words, the NT hadn’t been completed yet. Some churches may have had letters from the Apostles, but mostly they would have relied on the OT. The Apostle Peter also tells Christians to heed the OT prophets because they wrote under divine inspiration.

2 Pet 1:19-21
19 We have also a more sure word of prophecy; whereunto ye do well that ye take heed, as unto a light that shineth in a dark place, until the day dawn, and the day star arise in your hearts:
20 Knowing this first, that no prophecy of the scripture is of any private interpretation.
21 For the prophecy came not in old time by the will of man: but holy men of God spake [as they were] moved by the Holy Ghost.

If you don’t read the prophets, how can you heed the prophets? Peter tells us the words of the Apostles are of equal weight with the prophets, not superior.

2 Pet 3:1-2 This second epistle, beloved, I now write unto you; in both which I stir up your pure minds by way of remembrance: that ye may be mindful of the words which were spoken before by the holy prophets, and of the commandment of us the apostles of the Lord and Saviour.

The Christian is to be mindful of the words of the prophets and the words of the Apostles, of both the Old Testament and the New. Paul confirms in another place that whatsoever things were written – that is, all Scripture – were written to teach us True Christians™ and give us patience, comfort and hope.

Rom 15:4 For whatsoever things were written aforetime were written for our learning, that we through patience and comfort of the scriptures might have hope.

It should be obvious to everyone that the prophets, like Moses, wrote about Jesus, for they prophesied about Him. The New Testament tells us those prophecies were fulfilled. Even passages that you wouldn’t know were prophecies at first glance were fulfilled by Jesus (Jn 2:17; Ps 69:9).

Old Testament Saints
But they weren’t Christians back then! Oh yes, they were. Although the word Christian doesn’t appear until the NT (Acts 11:26), Abraham was a Christian.

Jn 8:56 Your father Abraham rejoiced to see my [Jesus’] day: and he saw [it], and was glad.

God preached the Gospel to him.

Gen 12:1-3
1 Now the LORD had said unto Abram, Get thee out of thy country, and from thy kindred, and from thy father’s house, unto a land that I will shew thee:
2 And I will make of thee a great nation, and I will bless thee, and make thy name great; and thou shalt be a blessing:
3 And I will bless them that bless thee, and curse him that curseth thee: and in thee shall all families of the earth be blessed.

But that’s not John 3:16! That’s not the Gospel! That just goes to show how little you FBLC’s know.

Gal 3:8 And the scripture, foreseeing that God would justify the heathen through faith, preached before the gospel unto Abraham, saying, In thee shall all nations be blessed.

All True Christians™ are children of Abraham. We share the same faith he had.

Gal 3:7, 9 Know ye therefore that they which are of faith, the same are the children of Abraham. So then they which be of faith are blessed with faithful Abraham.

There is no other Gospel. If the Gospel God preached to Abraham seems foreign to you, then you have believed a false Gospel.

Gal 1:8 But though we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel unto you than that which we have preached unto you, let him be accursed.

Moses and Elijah were also Christians, for they believed in Jesus and knew he would temporarily die for their sins.

Lk 9:28-36
28 And it came to pass about an eight days after these sayings, he took Peter and John and James, and went up into a mountain to pray.
29 And as he prayed, the fashion of his countenance was altered, and his raiment [was] white [and] glistering.
30 And, behold, there talked with him two men, which were Moses and Elias:
31 Who appeared in glory, and spake of his decease which he should accomplish at Jerusalem.

King David was also a Christian, for Jesus was his Lord.

Mat 22:42-45
41 While the Pharisees were gathered together, Jesus asked them,
42 Saying, What think ye of Christ? whose son is he? They say unto him, [The Son] of David.
43 He saith unto them, How then doth David in spirit call him Lord, saying,
44 The LORD said unto my Lord, Sit thou on my right hand, till I make thine enemies thy footstool?
45 If David then call him Lord, how is he his son?

The heroes of the faith in Hebrews 11 are set forth as examples for the Christian. Among them, Abraham is commended to us for being willing to sacrifice his son (Heb 11:17-19). Isaac is commended to us for being tricked into blessing the wrong son (Heb 11:20). Gideon, who later in his life became an idolater, is commended to us, as is Samson, who killed hundreds of Philistine men and women and himself, and Jephthah, who sacrificed his own daughter and killed 42,000 of his own countrymen (Heb 11:32). All of these OT saints received a good report for their faith (Heb 11:2, 39). Their faith pleased God (Heb 11:5-6). They are witnesses who inspire us to look to Christ and run the race set before us (Heb 12:1-2). But more than that, they believed they would go to heaven after they died, the same heaven we believe in.

Heb 11:10, 13-14, 16
10 For he [Abraham] looked for a city which hath foundations, whose builder and maker [is] God.
13 These all [Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, Sarah] died in faith, not having received the promises, but having seen them afar off, and were persuaded of [them], and embraced [them], and confessed that they were strangers and pilgrims on the earth.
14 For they that say such things declare plainly that they seek a country.
16 But now they desire a better [country], that is, an heavenly: wherefore God is not ashamed to be called their God: for he hath prepared for them a city.

This is an amazing revelation, considering nowhere in the OT do the OT saints confess they were strangers and pilgrims on earth.

The Problem
If you take the OT out of the Bible, you have to take it out of the NT as well. And if you did that, you wouldn’t have much of the NT left.

The present writer has counted 224 direct citations introduced by a definite formula indicating the writer purposed to quote. To these must be added seven cases where a second quotation is introduced by the conjunction “and,” and 19 cases where a paraphrase or summary rather than a direct quotation follows the introductory formula. We may further note at least 45 instances where the similarity with certain Old Testament passages is so pronounced that, although no explicit indication is given that the New Testament author was referring to Old Testament Scripture, his intention to do so can scarcely be doubted. Thus a very conservative count discloses unquestionably at least 295 separate references to the Old Testament. These occupy some 352 verses of the New Testament, or more than 4.4 per cent. Therefore one verse in 22.5 of the New Testament is a quotation.

Besides direct quotes, there are countless allusions to the OT in the NT. The verses surrounding a quote are often a commentary on the quote. It’s not like the authors of the NT were just making stuff up as they went along.

The Miracle at Berea
Jesus was forever rebuking His disciples and the Pharisees for not understanding that the Scriptures spoke of Him. He was frustrated that they could read Moses, which was all about Him, and the prophets, which prophesied about Him, and not see that it was all about Him. So has anyone ever read the OT and understood that it was all about Jesus? Yes. The New Testament tells us so.

Acts 17:10-11 And the brethren immediately sent away Paul and Silas by night unto Berea: who coming thither went into the synagogue of the Jews. These were more noble than those in Thessalonica, in that they received the word with all readiness of mind, and searched the scriptures daily, whether those things were so.

Luke commends the church at Berea for diligently searching the Scriptures – by which he means the OT because the NT hadn’t been written yet – until they found verses that agreed with what Paul and Silas taught. The Bereans no doubt understood Moses wrote about Jesus in the stories of the brass serpent and the rock in the wilderness. They no doubt understood that Jesus had fulfilled the prophets because Paul and Silas told them so. They no doubt understood the OT saints were Christians, even though there is no record anywhere in the OT of anyone believing in Jesus and the NT, which is the only place that tells us they were Christians, hadn’t been written yet. We too should be like the Bereans, searching the Scriptures daily to see whether these things are so.

Penalty for Rejection
If you take away the OT from the Bible, if your personal Bible is a pocketsize NT with Psalms and Proverbs, you’re subtracting from God’s Word. And the penalty for taking away from God’s Word is severe.

Rev 22:18-19 For I testify unto every man that heareth the words of the prophecy of this book, If any man shall add unto these things, God shall add unto him the plagues that are written in this book: and if any man shall take away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God shall take away his part out of the book of life, and out of the holy city, and from the things which are written in this book.

Deut 4:2 Ye shall not add unto the word which I command you, neither shall ye diminish [ought] from it, that ye may keep the commandments of the LORD your God which I command you.


BelieverInGod (24-03-2013 07:16 PM): Proverbs is my favorite book! What I don't understand, is they'll say the OT doesn't apply and then use Leviticus to support anti-gay marriage. Well, yes, Leviticus 20:13 If a man also lie with mankind, ...
Basilissa (25-03-2013 12:39 AM): What I don't understand, is they'll say the OT doesn't apply and then use Leviticus to support anti-gay marriage. Well, yes, Leviticus 20:13 If a man also lie with mankind, as he lieth with a woman, ...
LW1997 (22-10-2017 10:20 AM): You could not have said it any better.:thumbsup: ...
Jim C. Lombardo (23-10-2017 05:17 AM): You could not have said it any better.:thumbsup: Indeed. Sister Basilissa, bless her, is a woman, unfortunately, therefore oratory powers are limited there. Having something said is best left to a man. ...
Diesel Stanford (05-04-2018 11:02 PM): My favorite verses (except Revelation 22:21) are all from the OT. In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth. (Genesis 1:1) And God made the beast of the earth after his kind, and cattle after ...
MitzaLizalor (12-04-2018 11:09 AM): Originally Posted by Pim Pendergast http://www.23hq.com/23666/30950744_8b8b751cba8be1507a8edd6966357ea5_thumb.jpg Jn 5:46-47 For had ye believed Moses, ye would have believed me: for he wrote of me. ...
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