People often ask whether the Old Testament (75% of the Bible) is necessary? There are churches who concentrate only on the New Testament message that Jesus Christ saves from sins. It is a true statement, but the problems begin when people in those congregations have to answer why they believe it. It is a difficult question to answer when you concentrate only on the 25% of the New Testament.
# Possible questions
- Why is a person born in sin and why does he need to be forgiven?
- Why can’t Jesus just forgive all people their sins?
- If your sins are forgiven, does that mean you can live as you like, with the ‘guarantee’ to enter heaven?
- If Jesus forgives sins, what about Allah, Buddha and others?
# Possible answers
You can only answer those question, and many others like them, if you take a Kingdom view of Scripture (Old + New Testament), instead of a New Testament view only. The differences in broad terms are the following:
- The ‘Jesus saves’ view, ‘She [Mary] will give birth to a son, and you are to give Him the name Jesus, because He will save His people from their sins.’ 1
- The Kingdom view, ‘The Lord God will give Him the throne of His father David, and He will reign over the house of Jacob for ever; His Kingdom will never end.’ 2
In broad terms, we can say the Matthew version is the New Testament one, Jesus saves. The Luke version is the Kingdom view, which includes both testaments. Note the references to Jacob and David in the Old Testament.
# Answers from both testaments
The complete Bible gives a more comprehensive view of Jesus’ work on earth. Look at some aspects:
- Adam was banished from Eden because of his disobedience.
- Eden, which represents God’s ideal Kingdom, expects obedience from its citizens.
- The Old Testament proves that eventually obedience is an elusive concept, because the Israelites failed most of the time. The Gentiles also failed.
- God’s New Covenant was in Jesus.3 He would cleanse people’s hearts by forgiveness, and fill them with the Holy Spirit who lives in a ‘clean’ house.
- Only the Holy Spirit can help a person to be obedient to God, based on what the Bible teaches.
- Only through Jesus are we reconciled to God. The fellowship was broken by Adam’s disobedience.
The Kingdom view of Jesus’ work on earth does not minimize Jesus’ work. On the contrary, through the failure of Adam, one understands how important Jesus is. Only He reconciles us with God, only He can give God children. Only by taking into consideration the whole message of the whole Bible can we answer why Jesus had to die to forgive our sins.
- Matthew 1:21
- Luke 1:32
- Jeremiah 31:31-34