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Is the Old Testament secondary material?

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File:Glen canyon dam.jpg

I heard Pastor John MacArthur recently refer to the OT as basically supportive material to the NT. Ummm? Not sure I want to relegate the OT to a secondary position in Redemptive History. I hope that’s not how he meant it. It may be since he considers it a laudable milestone in his ministry to have just finished preaching verse by verse thru the NT. He now is going to take some time to consider where he will go next. Uh?

Why do we need the OT as much as we need the NT?

A few big reasons:

The Creation account

The Fall of Man

The Idea of covenants

The nature of Imputation

The nature of Redemption

Grace unfolding

What worship is

The glory of God

Fullness of the Sovereignty of God

An extensive view of the scope of Man’s Depravity

Songs Praise

Poetry of many varieties

Who YHVH is

The Temple as a prelude to who Christ is

The Tabernacle as a demonstration of what Christ did

Don’t we miss a lot of Redemptive History when we look at the OT as supportive material for the NT? The OT is the forest in which the trees of the NT grew upward. You may have heard the idea that the OT is shadow and the NT is light. I am rethinking that idea. Perhaps this analogy is true as it pertains to the unfolding of Gospel details. Finding out that Jesus of Nazareth is the Christ is like going from shadows to light. For that the “shadow-light” metaphor works.

However, the Divine Revelation God offered in the OT and offers us now is not shadowy or in a corner. The NT and the OT are both supportive material for God’s eternal Redemptive design. If Abraham could put his full faith and trust in God with the amount of Divine Data before him thousands of years ago, then the OT record is not secondary.

I see the OT as millions of gallons of water behind a dam. The NT is what happens when the dam bursts.

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