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Why are there Old and New Testaments?

Why are there Old and New Testaments?
“In that He says, ‘A new covenant,’ He has made the first obsolete. Now what is becoming obsolete is growing old is ready to vanish away.”
Hebrews 8:13

The Old Testament is called the Old Testament because God Himself called it “Old” in Hebrews 8:13. Although it was the Testament containing the covenant God made with Israel, He promised them that He would make a new covenant contained in a Testament that would be for everyone (not just Israel).

“Behold, the days are coming, says the Lord, when I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel and the house of Judah – not according to the covenant I made with their fathers…” (Jeremiah 31:31-32)
“…He has obtained a more excellent ministry, inasmuch as He is also Mediator of a better covenant…” (Hebrews 8:6)

What is new and better about it?

Better promises: A covenant is a set of agreed terms with promised results. “…He is also Mediator of a better covenant, which was established on better promises” (He 8:6). The New Covenant contains the promise of full forgiveness of sin and eternal life through Christ’s death.

A better sacrifice: Because “…it is not possible that the blood of bulls and goats could take away sins” as the Old Law showed Israel, Jesus came offering His sinless body, once for all (He 10:4, 10).

A law in our hearts: The Old Law was written on stone and, although it was intended to be a law on Israel’s heart, they turned it into a primarily faithless outward religion. But of the New Covenant God said, “I will put My laws in their mind and write them on their hearts; and I will be their God, and they shall be My people” (He 8:10). The New Testament reveals the gospel of God’s grace so we will respond in faith, love, and obedience.

The Old Testament is still valuable in showing us God’s creation of man and how He carried out His plan for our redemption through His Savior, Jesus Christ. There are many Old Testament examples we can learn from (1 Co 10:11). There are prophecies and miracles and fore shadows. However, the New Testament contains our New Law revealed by Jesus, the Holy Spirit, and His apostles and prophets. When we want to know God’s will for us today, we find it revealed in the New Testament which contains evidence for our faith and how we enter into a covenant relationship with God today.    dd