Why Bother with Old Testament History?

The Old Testament

Listen to the encouragement of Psalm 99 to worship the Creator as King.

__________ The LORD reigns; let the peoples tremble!
_____________ He sits enthroned upon the cherubim; let the earth quake!
__________ The LORD is great in Zion;
_____________ he is exalted over all the peoples.
__________ Let them praise your great and awesome name!
_____________ Holy is he!
__________ The King in his might loves justice.
_____________ You have established equity;
__________ you have executed justice
_____________ and righteousness in Jacob.
__________ Exalt the LORD our God;
_____________ worship at his footstool!
_____________ Holy is he! (Psa 99:1-5)

To strengthen this call to worship, the psalmist reminds us of Old Testament history.

__________ Moses and Aaron were among his priests,
_____________ Samuel also was among those who called upon his name.
_____________ They called to the LORD, and he answered them.
__________ In the pillar of the cloud he spoke to them;
_____________ they kept his testimonies
_____________ and the statute that he gave them.

__________ O LORD our God, you answered them;
_____________ you were a forgiving God to them,
_____________ but an avenger of their wrongdoings.
__________ Exalt the LORD our God,
_____________ and worship at his holy mountain;
_____________ for the LORD our God is holy! (Psa 99:6-9)

Why should we spend significant time reading Old Testament history? Among a host of answers, Psalm 99 offers these practical pointers:

  • It reinforces our faith in the God who answers.
  • It reminds us of the expectation to obey the God who has spoken.
  • It deepens our sense of need for the God who is willing to forgive.
  • It enhances our hope in the God who avenges wrongdoings.
  • It perfects our reverent fear of the God who is perfectly holy.
  • It motivates and refines our worship of the God who continues to reign.

For whatever was written in former days was written for our instruction, that through endurance and through the encouragement of the Scriptures we might have hope. (Rom 15:4).

How long has it been since you took the time to deeply reflect on the profound and practical lessons to be learned from the lives of Moses, Aaron, Samuel, and the many other Old Testament examples of faith?

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