The New Testament Church
by George Kirkpatrick
Vital Words to the Body of Christ
Freely We Have Received, Freely We Give
Today when a great majority of people go to what they call church, to them it means going to a denomination or a building. All denominations have headquarters or a governing body, and the headquarters or governing body dictates what can be taught in their organization.
Many denominations supply the message text that is to be preached. Many other pastors of these denominations get their messages from a Christian book store or through a mail order source. All of which means the Holy Spirit has nothing to do with the Spiritual needs of the people. These messages sound good and are designed to placate the people, putting them to sleep concerning their Spiritual needs. There is no conviction in these messages, and the people leave the church secure in their sinful condition.
As we draw back the blinds to discover what God intended His church to be, we find He would be appalled to see what His church has become. The same Greek word for church is used throughout the New Testament. It is the word EKKLESIA and is made up of two syllables. The Greek prefix EK means "out of, or away from" and the root verb KLESIA which means "to call or invite." So the word ekklesia means "to call or invite out of or away from." The word church or the ekklesia are those who are called out of or away from something. So what is the church to be called out of or away from? The church is to become an overcoming body that represents who they are named for, Jesus Christ - - - or the inChristed ones. Peter enlightens us:
"For even hereunto were ye called: because Christ also suffered for us, leaving us an example, that ye should follow His steps:" I Peter 2:21
We, as His people, must follow in His steps if we are to become like Him. Jesus gave us knowledge of what we are to overcome:
"These things I have spoken unto you, that in Me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world." John 16:33
Jesus was our example of overcoming. Jesus is also our example of what the church is to become. So what should the church have been called out of? The World! But has the church system come out of the world? No, instead the world has been invited into the very midst of the church. It sits beside those who occupy the pews. Sin has not been kept out of the church. It has invaded the church, and the feel good, tickle the ears messages have OK'd its existence, so it is never dealt with, and because of this the spirit of darkness reigns supreme.
Today things are tolerated in the church that should not even be discussed in the church: homosexuality, adultery, fornication, alcohol and drug abuse, money schemes - - - the list goes on and on.
Sin is tolerated for fear of losing its members, and the hirelings occupying the pulpits would look bad in the eyes of those set over them. So the same scenarios continue week after week, and the people leave the church in the same condition they entered the church. There is no life and no change because there is no conviction to change.
Another common error we discover in the church and on the sign outside the church is "This is a New Testament Church." What is meant by a New Testament Church? This means their message is a New Testament message. They shun the Old Testament, stating it is just a dead letter, ancient stories that have no significance in today's modern world.
To be a New Testament Church means one has not studied, nor do they believe the New Testament. If they did they would discover the New Testament clearly testifies abundantly with references that directly go back to the sacred Old Testament writings. Many simply ignore the multitude of Scriptures in the New Testament which verify what the Old Testament has to say. Paul related to the Ephesians:
"For through Him we both have access by one Spirit unto the Father. Now therefore ye are no more strangers and foreigners, but fellowcitizens with the saints, and of the household of God; And are built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ Himself being the chief corner stone;" Ephesians 2:18-20
God's foundations are built upon the apostles and prophets. The apostles wrote the New Testament by the inspiration of God - - - the prophets wrote the Old Testament by the same inspiration - - - and Jesus is the chief cornerstone of both the New Testament, as well as the Old Testament. So to deny the Old Testament is to deny God who gave it to us. Paul reminds us of the purpose of the Old Testament writings:
"Now all these things happened unto them for ensamples: and they are written for our admonition, upon whom the ends of the world are come." I Corinthians 10:11
Without the Old Testament we cannot learn of Him and His ways. Everything that happened to ancient Israel was written for our admonition "our exhortation and learning." And to whom is the Old Testament written? It is written expressly for those upon whom the end of the age has come. Paul further exhorts the Colossians:
"Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom; teaching and admonishing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord." Colossians 3:16
The Psalms and many of our Spiritual songs come from the Old Testament. Some believe the Holy Spirit is some kind of a New Testament phenomonym, but every prophet who wrote the Old Testament was inspired by the Holy Spirit. In fact the Old Testament lists over ninety people that the Spirit came upon.
The Pentecostals would have us believe the coming of the Holy Spirit on the Day of Pentecost was something God did for the first time. In order for us to understand the coming of the Holy Spirit on the Day of Pentecost, we must discover why the Holy Spirit came. Luke records Jesus' words:
"And, behold, I send the promise of My Father upon you: but tarry ye in the city of Jerusalem, until ye be endued with power from on high." Luke 24:49
Jesus stated, "I send the promise of My Father." The promise of the Father was not something the Father had promised, but rather the promise of the Father was something Jesus would send.
In order to determine what is the promise of the Father we must ask, "Who was Jesus' Father?" Three times in the New Testament it was recorded Mary was overshadowed by the Holy Ghost, and Jesus was conceived in her womb. So who was Jesus' Father? It was the Holy Spirit. So the Holy Ghost or the Holy Spirit is the Father. When Jesus stated He would send the promise of the Father, He was promising the coming of the Holy Spirit on the Day of Pentecost. Further proof of who the Father is was when the Holy Spirit came as a dove upon Jesus at His Baptism.
"And Jesus, when He was baptized, went up straightway out of the water: and, lo, the heavens were opened unto Him, and He saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove, and lighting upon Him: And lo a voice from heaven, saying, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased." Matthew 3:16 & 17
The Holy Spirit was recognizing Jesus as His beloved Son.
Now we need to ask, "Why did Jesus send the promise of the Father?" Some would have us believe it was so we could speak in tongues, but as the Word proclaims, it was to endue His people with power - - - power for what? Power to overcome! The Holy Spirit came as cloven tongues of fire. This fire is the cleansing power in our lives so we can be counted worthy to once again stand in the presence of the Almighty God. Luke gives us insight why the Holy Spirit came when He did:
"And when the Day of Pentecost was fully come, they were all with one accord in one place." Acts 2:1
Those in the Upper Room were all together in one accord. The church has overlooked for years what it means to be in one accord. The phrase one accord is the Greek word HOMOTHUMADON and means "with one mind, with one passion." A wise man wrote concerning being in one accord:
". . .this helps us understand the uniqueness of the Christian community. Homothumadon is a compound of two words meaning "to rush along, and in unison." The image is almost musical. A number of notes are sounded which, while different, harmonize in pitch and tone. As the instruments of a great concert under the direction of a concert master, so the Holy Spirit blends together the lives of the members of Christ's church. . ." End of quote
Everyone is looking for a great move of God at the end of this present age, but what is missing? It is His ekklesia coming together with one mind and in one accord. Instead, many prod along playing church, doing their own thing, and they wonder why God is absent from their meetings.
Those who walk and dwell in the promise of the Father (the Holy Spirit) have the ability and insight to understand what the Old Testament is all about, concerning all the sacrifices, offerings, and oblations that point to Jesus. Jesus verified this when He walked with two of His disciples on the road to Emmaus after His resurrection:
"And, behold, two of them went that same day to a village called Emmaus, which was from Jerusalem about threescore furlongs. And they talked together of all these things which had happened. And it came to pass, that, while they communed together and reasoned, Jesus Himself drew near, and went with them." Luke 24:13-15
When Jesus questioned them about what they were discussing, the disciples declared:
"And how the chief priests and our rulers delivered Him to be condemned to death, and have crucified Him. But we trusted that it had been He which should have redeemed Israel: and beside all this, today is the third day since these things were done." Luke 24:20-21
Jesus reply was:
"Ought not Christ to have suffered these things, and to enter into His glory? And beginning at Moses and all the prophets, He expounded unto them in all the Scriptures the things concerning Himself." Luke 24:26-27
Moses and the prophets wrote the Old Testament by and through the inspiration of the Holy Spirit. Moses is credited with the authorship of the first five books of the Old Testament, and the prophets wrote the balance of the old Testament.
In fact all the Old Testament points to Jesus. The four gospels - - - Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John - - - declare Jesus' earthly walk, and the writings of the apostles point back to Jesus. So to discredit or to shun the Old Testament is to miss out on over three-fourths of what the Bible is all about. The Old Testament is full of types, shadows, and similitudes concerning Jesus.
After Jesus walked with the two disciples on the road to Emmaus, He met with the eleven in Jerusalem:
"And He said unto them, These are the words which I spake unto you, while I was yet with you, that all things must be fulfilled, which were written in the law of Moses, and in the prophets, and in the psalms, concerning Me." Luke 24:44
Again Jesus declared all things written in the Law of Moses must be fulfilled. So what was the Law given Moses about? The Law was about Jesus in types and shadows. The prophets and Psalms all pointed to Jesus - - - His earthly walk, His resurrection, and His coming again. Praise the Lord! So how can we know or understand Jesus without understanding the Old Testament?
When Jesus began His earthly ministry, the disciples recognized Him for who He was because of what was prophesied of Him in the ancient writings.
"Philip findeth Nathanael, and saith unto Him, We have found Him, of whom Moses in the Law, and the prophets, did write, Jesus of Nazareth, the son of Joseph." John 1:45
They recognized Jesus, not by His appearance, but by the Spirit. They had learned of Him through Moses' Law and the prophets. When Jesus was addressing the Jews because they did not believe in Him, He said:
"Search the Scriptures; for in them ye think ye have eternal life: and they are they which testify of Me." John 5:39
We need to ask, "What Scriptures did the Jews have to search?" All they had was the Old Testament. Certainly Peter, James, John, Matthew, and Paul had yet to write one word of what we call the New Testament. Jesus told the Jews it was the ancient writings that testified of Himself. Jesus continued His revelation:
"I am come in My Father's name, and ye receive Me not: if another shall come in his own name, him ye will receive." John 5:43
Jesus came giving glory to the name of the Father, but Jesus told them another would come in his own name, and him they would receive. Every denomination was started by man. Many bear the founder's name. The words of their founder have become the church's precepts, doctrines, and creeds. If the founder did not teach it, then the church system which they started refuse to receive it. They continue on, playing church and proclaiming, "We are the only ones who have the truth."
"How can ye believe, which receive honour one of another, and seek not the honour that cometh from God only?" John 5:44
Jesus told the Jews they received honor one of another. This was true of the Jews. It is also true of the church system today. They have more pride in who they are, then who they serve. Many groups give everyone a title - - - such as Reverend, Apostle, Prophet, Evanglelist, Deacon, etc. - - - all of which puffs up one in the sight of man. Job warned all the people:
"Let me not, I pray you, accept any man's person, neither let me give flattering titles unto man. For I know not to give flattering titles; in so doing my Maker would soon take me away." Job 32:21-22
Self-esteem runs rampant in the church today. David, the Psalmist, discloses:
"They speak vanity every one with his neighbour: with flattering lips and with a double heart do they speak. The Lord shall cut off all flattering lips, and the tongue that speaketh proud things." Psalm 12:2-3
Flattering titles and flattering lips all have the same promise, and that promise is God's judgment. David declared with a double heart do they speak. A double heart is to be double minded. The Apostle James proclaims:
"A double minded man is unstable in all his ways." James 1:8
A double minded man is one who is torn between walking with God or running with the world. This man vacillates between church on Sunday and his or her worldly activities on Monday and the rest of the week. On Sunday he gets pats on the back from those who are like-minded, and on Monday he responds to those who are like-minded in the world. Jesus warned the people they received honor one of another, but they did not seek the honor that came from God alone. Jesus continued His admonition to the Jews:
"Do not think that I will accuse you to the Father: there is one that accuseth you, even Moses in whom ye trust. 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?" John 5:45-47
Again Jesus informed the Jews that Moses wrote about Him, and because they did not believe Moses' writings they did not believe His words.
If those who claim to be New Testament Churches do not believe the words of Moses they have missed all the Scriptures which point to Jesus, the chief cornerstone of both the Old and New Testaments.
The first prophesy of Jesus in the Bible is in Genesis. When the serpent beguiled Eve, God spoke to the serpent:
"And the Lord God said unto the serpent, Because thou hast done this, thou art cursed above all cattle, and above every beast of the field; upon thy belly shalt thou go, and dust shalt thou eat all the days of thy life:
And I will put enmity between thee and the woman, and between thy seed and her seed; it shall bruise thy head, and thou shalt bruise his heel." Genesis 3:14-15
God cursed the serpent and stated He would put enmity (hatred) between the serpent's seed and the seed of the woman. We know by Paul's writings that ". . . in the fullness of time God sent forth His Son made of woman," Galatians 4:4. Jesus was that seed of the woman who would bruise (crush) the head of the serpent. This was accomplished at the resurrection of Jesus. Up to that time the serpent (the devil) had the keys of death.
Jesus is prophesied throughout the book of Genesis in actual prophecies and in types and shadows. When Jacob (Israel) lay dying, he gave prophecies to each of his twelve sons. His prophesy to Judah was:
"The scepter shall not depart from Judah, nor a lawgiver from between his feet, until Shiloh come; and unto him shall the gathering of the people be." Genesis 49:10
Mary, the mother of Jesus, was from the tribe of Judah. The scepter (rod of authority) would not depart from Judah, nor a lawgiver from between his feet until Shiloh come. The name Shiloh means "peace bringer or bringer of prosperity." Jesus is the Prince of Peace and He will meet all our needs according to His riches in glory by Christ Jesus, Philippians 4:19. And as the Scriptures proclaim, "Unto Him shall the gathering of the people be," Genesis 49:10
In Abraham we see a great prophesy of Christ. God promised Abraham because of His obedience:
"And in thy seed shall all the nations of the earth be blessed; because thou hast obeyed My voice." Genesis 22:18
To understand this promise we look again to Paul's writings:
"Now to Abraham and his seed were the promises made. He saith not, And to seeds, as of many; but as of one, And to thy seed, which is Christ." Galatians 3:16
All the promises made to Abraham are for his seed. Abraham's only seed is Christ. The name Christ means "anointing or anointed." Only those who have the anointing of Christ can claim the promises made to Abraham. This brings up the question,
"Without the Old Testament how would the New Testament Church know what the promises made to Abraham are, so they can claim God's promises?"
Isaiah prophesied much about the coming of Jesus:
"Therefore the Lord Himself shall give you a sign; Behold, a virgin shall conceive, and bear a son, and shall call His name Immanuel." Isaiah 7:14
The name Emmanuel means "God with us".
Isaiah prophesied over seven hundred years before the birth of Jesus. Yet many of the organized churches now deny the virgin birth of Jesus, and the Catholics teach the Immaculate Conception was not the conception of Jesus, but the conception of the virgin Mary which was free from the original sin. How far the church has removed from the truth!
The Old Testament gives credence to everything taught in the New Testament. Isaiah continues to give insight to the birth of Jesus:
"For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon His shoulders, and His name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, The Mighty God, The Everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace. Of the increase of His government and peace there shall be no end, upon the throne of David, and upon His kingdom, to order it, and to establish it with judgment and with justice from henceforth even for ever. The zeal of the Lord of hosts will perform this." Isaiah 9:6-7
Everything prophesied by Isaiah was fulfilled by Jesus. He occupied the throne of David. These are the words the angel spoke to Mary:
"He shall be great, and shall be called the Son of the Highest: and the Lord God shall give unto Him the throne of His father David:" Luke 1:32
Jesus is the only occupier of the throne of David. The identity teachers claim the throne of England is the throne of David. How wrong and how foolish they are to deny the Word of God!
"The book of the generation of Jesus Christ, the son of David, the son of Abraham." Matthew 1:1
Jesus was the son of David and of Abraham. As the Son, then Jesus was the inheritor of the throne of David and all the promises made to Abraham - - - and we as His sons and daughters can also claim our inheritance through Him. This includes the throne of David. We can also claim all the promises made to Abraham.
Isaiah prophesied much about Jesus and the suffering He would suffer for us. Other prophets also prophesied about Jesus. Jeremiah proclaims:
"Behold, the days come, saith the Lord, that I will raise unto David a righteous Branch, and a King shall reign and prosper, and shall execute judgment and justice in the earth.
In His days Judah shall be saved, and Israel shall dwell safely: and this is His name whereby He shall be called, THE LORD OUR RIGHTEOUSNESS." Jeremiah 23:5-6
Jeremiah also prophesied that Jesus would occupy the throne of David, and truly He is the Lord Our Righteousness. Again Jeremiah prophesied:
"Behold, the days come, saith the Lord, that I will perform that good thing which I have promised unto the house of Israel and to the house of Judah. In those days, and at that time, will I cause the Branch of righteousness to grow up unto David; and He shall execute judgment and righteousness in the land." Jeremiah 33:14-15
Without Jesus as our example, His creation would have no example of righteousness and peace. All other religions serve a vengeful God. We serve a loving and merciful God who will execute judgment where needed. But His judgment is with justice and equity. John recorded Jesus' words concerning judgment:
"I can of Mine own self do nothing: as I hear, I judge: and My judgment is just; because I seek not Mine own will, but the will of the Father which hath sent Me." John 5:30
Jesus came to do the will of the Father, and His judgment was by the Spirit. His judgment was for the betterment of His people. It was not vengeful, merciless punishment.
The prophet Ezekiel prophesied the same thing Isaiah and Jeremiah prophesied:
" And I will set up one Shepherd over them, and He shall feed them, even My servant David; He shall feed them, and He shall be their Shepherd." Ezekiel 34:23
All the prophets in the Old Testament had the witness of Jesus. If we do not know the Old Testament, we miss out on every shred of evidence as to the eternal purpose God has set forth in His Word.
In Paul's writings to the Hebrews we have Jesus' words:
"Then said I, Lo, I come (in the volume of the book it is written of me,) to do thy will, O God." Hebrews 10:7
Indeed every book of the Bible proclaims our coming King. The prophet Zechariah prophesied Jesus' triumphal entrance into Jerusalem.
"Rejoice greatly, O daughter of Zion; shout, O daughter of Jerusalem: behold, thy King cometh unto thee: He is just, and having salvation; lowly and riding upon an ass, and upon a colt the foal of an ass." Zechariah 9:9
Three of the four gospel writers quoted Zechariah: Matthew, Mark, and John. This was addressed to the daughters of Zion and the daughters of Jerusalem. The daughters in the Old Testament refer to the church in the New Testament. We, too, should be shouting Hosanna to our King daily.
The Psalms have much to say about the coming of Jesus, His life, His ministry, His resurrection, and His coming again. To deny or ignore the Old Testament is to rob oneself of the knowledge God has given us to become His righteous heirs.
Ethan, the Psalmist, proclaimed a prophesy of the coming of Jesus:
"I have made a covenant with My chosen, I have sworn unto David My servant, Thy seed will I establish for ever, and build up thy throne to all generations. Selah." Psalm 89:3-4
This promise was made to David and was fulfilled in his son Jesus. What was that promise? The promise was that David's seed would be established for ever and would build up his throne to all future generations. Those who will rule and reign with Christ for the one thousand year millennium will fulfill this prophesy given by Ethan.
David prophesied about Jesus when he proclaimed:
"The Lord hath sworn, and will not repent, Thou art a priest for ever after the order of Melchizedec." Psalm 110:4
In his letter to the Hebrews, Paul verified who David was speaking about:
"So also Christ glorified not Himself to be made an high priest; but He that said unto Him, Thou art My Son, to day have I begotten Thee. As He saith also in another place, Thou art a priest for ever after the order of Melchisedec." Hebrews 5:5-6
Jesus was made an high priest after the order of Melchisedec just as David prophesied. Without the knowledge of the Old Testament we would have no idea what Paul meant.
The priesthood belonged to the Levitical tribe, but Jesus' lineage came through Mary, who was of the tribe of Judah. Paul responded to this when he wrote:
"For it is evident that our Lord sprang out of Juda; of which tribe Moses spake nothing concerning priesthood." Hebrews 7:14
How then did the priesthood change? This happened when John baptized Jesus. Jesus came to the Jordan to be baptized of John:
"But John forbade Him, saying, I have need to be baptized of Thee, and comest Thou to me? And Jesus answering said unto him, Suffer it to be so now: for thus it becometh us to fulfill all righteousness. Then he suffered him." Matthew 3:14-15
As Jesus stated, it was up to Him and John to fulfill all righteousness. Righteousness is the only condition acceptable to God. When Jesus went down into the water to be baptized, two things changed for all mankind. John was the only rightful heir to the Levitical priesthood. He also had the firstfruit of the Spirit he received in Elizabeth, his mother's, womb. These two things changed hands in the Jordan River. Jesus not only received John's firstfruit anointing, but He became the heir to the priesthood. John had been the voice of the one crying in the wilderness and had prepared the way of the Lord - - - but now his ministry was finished. This is when Jesus' ministry began.
"And Jesus, when He was baptized, went up straightway out of the water: and, lo, the heavens were opened unto Him, and He saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove, and lighting upon Him: And lo a voice from heaven, saying, This is My beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased." Matthew 3:16-17
When Jesus came out of the water, He received another anointing, and this was the anointing of the dove (peace). The Holy Spirit proclaimed this was His Son who would fulfill all righteousness. His ekklesia has not yet received this baptism of peace.
The Levitical priesthood was part of the old covenant God made with Israel. Paul revealed to us why Jesus had to receive the priesthood from John:
"In that He saith, A new covenant, He hath made the first old. Now that which decayeth and waxeth old is ready to vanish away." Hebrews 8:13
So the old covenant which contained the law and the priesthood has passed away. Those who want to follow the law or maintain the priesthood should know it has vanished away. Jesus had to end the Levitical priesthood so He could establish the Melchizedek priesthood. Paul continued his revelation of the Melchizedek priesthood:
"Whither the forerunner is for us entered, even Jesus, made an high priest for ever after the order of Melchizedek. For this Melchizedek, King of Salem, priest of the most high God, who met Abraham returning from the slaughter of the kings, and blessed him;" Hebrews 6:20 & 7:1
Our forerunner, Jesus, has entered in, and has sat down on the right hand of the Father. Paul continues:
"To whom also Abraham gave a tenth part of all; first being by interpretation King of righteousness, and after that also King of Salem, which is, King of peace; without father, without mother, without descent, having neither beginning of days, nor end of life; but made like unto the Son of God: abideth a priest continually." Hebrews 7:2-3
When Melchizedek met Abraham, he was without father or mother. He had no beginning of days, nor end of life. This was the eternal God that met Abraham. This eternal God was made like unto the Son of God. God only had one begotten Son. That was Jesus. And after His resurrection, He was made a priest forever after the order of Melchizedek.
It therefore becomes clear to all who desire to see that it was Jesus, in His Spiritual body, who met Abraham. This was the same body Jesus had after His resurrection when He met His disciples on the road to Emmaus, and when He appeared to all those in the Upper Room.
Again, without the Old Testament knowledge, the New Testament Church would have missed all the prophesies and all the foreknowledge of Jesus their Saviour. This is why doubt and confusion has entered into the modern church. Many deny what they read because they have forsaken the foundation God has given us in the Old Testament.
Every writer of the New Testament quoted from the Old Testament. These writers all used the Old Testament to prove Jesus was the Messiah, promised by God from the beginning.
When Paul was taken to Rome to be tried, many of the believers wanted to hear what Paul had to say.
"And when they had appointed him a day, there came many to him into his lodging; to whom he expounded and testified the Kingdom of God, persuading them concerning Jesus, both out of the law of Moses, and out of the prophets, from morning till evening." Acts 28:23
Paul expounded all day out of the Old Testament concerning Jesus and the Kingdom of God. The Old Testament contained everything about the birth, life, death, resurrection, and His coming Kingdom. Those who have no, or little knowledge, of the Old Testament cannot understand the full counsel of God. Paul continued speaking to the believers in Rome:
"And some believed the things which were spoken, and some believed not." Acts 28:24
As Paul related, ". . . some believed not." Those who did not believe were indeed unbelievers. The same is true today. Those who do not believe and deny the Old Testament are unbelievers. They cannot completely establish their faith in Christ in the New Testament only. When Paul was in Rome, he called the chief of the Jews together and related his belief in God and where he got his belief:
"But this I confess unto thee, that after the way which they call heresy, so worship I the God of my fathers, believing all things which are written in the law and in the prophets." Acts 24:14
Paul believed all things written in the Old Testament. The Jews did not believe, neither do much of the modern church. Paul continued:
"Having therefore obtained help of God, I continue unto this day, witnessing both to small and great, saying none other things than those which the prophets and Moses did say should come:" Acts 26:22
The spirit of prophesy is in the Old Testament. The true prophets of today are those who, by the Spirit, give meaning to what the old prophets wrote. Paul was truly a prophet in his day, but his prophecies were what the old prophets wrote concerning Jesus. Jesus related to all who would know and understand:
"Search the Scriptures; for in them ye think ye have eternal life: and they are they which testify of Me." John 5:39
Knowing none of the New Testament was written at the time Jesus walked the earth, the Scriptures that testified of Him were from the Old Testament. Paul summed it up in his letter to the Hebrews:
"Wherefore seeing we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us," Hebrews 12:1
We truly are compassed about with a great cloud of witnesses. Every writer of the Bible was inspired by the Holy Spirit to give us insight into how we can run the race of life to enter again into the presence of God, which should be every believer's goal.
To not consider a great portion of that cloud of witnesses (the Old Testament) would cripple those who are running the race. God has protected His Word through the ages, both the Old and the New Testaments, so we may become victorious in our walk in Him.
Not to take complete advantage of His generous gift to His creation is hard to imagine!
But God knows the hearts of those who are truly seeking Him.
Vital Words to the Body of Christ
Freely We Have Received, Freely We Give