The Old Testament is comprised of the writings of ancient Israel held sacred by both Jews and Christians.

learn more… | top users | synonyms

48
votes
13answers
3k views

Who saved people before ~33AD?

The exact date isn't important but at some point about 2000 years ago Christ died on a cross. Since that point Christians everywhere have put their faith in Him. He claimed to be the Way, the Truth ...
32
votes
6answers
3k views

To what extent does the Law of Moses still apply?

Matthew 5:17-18 (KJV) 17 Think not that I am come to destroy the law, or the prophets: I am not come to destroy, but to fulfil. 18 For verily I say unto you, Till heaven and earth pass, one jot ...
22
votes
7answers
430 views

Who was Melchizedek

Melchizedek ("King of Justice" in Hebrew) is mentioned in Genesis 14 as receiving the dime from Abraham, and breaking bread with him: 18 And Melchizedek king of Salem brought forth bread and wine: ...
18
votes
3answers
4k views

Are there Old Testament Scriptures that mention salvation for the Gentiles?

I'm wondering if there are any passages/prophecies about salvation for the Gentile world in the Old Testament. If you know any, please share.
15
votes
2answers
869 views

What is the origin of the moral-civil-ceremonial distinction of the Old Testament law?

This distinction is often called tripartite division of the law. I ran across this series of blog posts: http://maelandcindy.blogspot.com/2008/06/is-mosaic-law-tripartite.html ...
14
votes
4answers
181 views

How did Cain and Able know to offer sacrifices before the Law of Moses?

Genesis 4 has always bothered me. The story of God accepting Able's sacrifice and not Cain's has led me to wonder: How did they even know to sacrifice? Was this practice started by Adam? Or did God ...
13
votes
7answers
16k views

Does the New Testament override the Old Testament?

Throughout the Old Testament there have been many laws laid down by the Lord, that are perhaps more harsh then we, as Christians, follow today. Many times in the New Testament it has been found to ...
13
votes
2answers
6k views

What is the significance of taking hold of the horns of the altar?

Hi all I was wondering why did Joab take hold of the horns of the altar in 2 Kings 28? Or rather, what is the significance of him doing that? What is he trying to do? 1 Kings 2:28-29 (NIV) 28 ...
13
votes
1answer
795 views

Who, and what, are the “chosen people”?

According to Deuteronomy 7:6, the Israelites are called the "chosen people". Who in fact are the chosen people, and does this include Christians? What sets the chosen people apart, are there special ...
13
votes
2answers
348 views

How much variation is in the Hebrew language of the Old Testament?

Is there a difference in the Hebrew between the earliest Old Testament books and the relatively newer books? In other words: are there linguistic differences (syntax, grammar, word usage) in older ...
12
votes
5answers
13k views

What is the significance of the burning bush?

In Exodus 3, God reveals himself to Moses through the sign of a burning bush, which miraculously is not consumed by the flames. Here is Exodus 3:1-6 in the NRSV: Moses was keeping the flock of his ...
12
votes
2answers
454 views

When was the OT canon as used by Protestants finalized?

At what date (and/or event) was the Old Testament canon currently recognized by most Protestants finalized? What is the earliest occurrence we have of it being referenced in it's current form and who ...
12
votes
4answers
3k views

Why don't Christians celebrate the feast of tabernacles?

Although there are some who celebrate the feast of Tabernacles they are definitely in a minority. A prophecy in Zechariah speaks of a time when all nations will have to keep the feast: Zech 14:16 ...
11
votes
3answers
5k views

Why did Abraham lie to Pharaoh about Sarah being his sister in Gen 12?

It says that Abraham feared for his life (Gen 12:12). Does this mean Abraham didn't trust God in spite of the NT view that Abraham was a man of faith (Heb 11:8-12, Gal 3:9)? Why is the repeated ...
11
votes
4answers
5k views

Why did God become angry with Balaam?

Numbers 22:20-22 NIV That night God came to Balaam and said, "Since these men have come to summon you, go with them, but do only what I tell you." Balaam got up in the morning, saddled his ...
11
votes
3answers
137 views

What person(s) of the Trinity were the people of the Old Testament interacting with?

When a someone or groups of people were interacting with God, as recorded in the Old Testament, in general were they simply interacting with person of 'God the Father' within the Trinity? Or were they ...
10
votes
6answers
7k views

How does the Snake in the Desert foreshadow the coming of Jesus?

In His conversation with Nicodemus, Jesus referenced the story of the snake in the desert and indicated that it foreshadowed Himself. How exactly does this story foreshadow Jesus? And as Moses ...
10
votes
1answer
5k views

What is the religion of the Midian people?

In Exodus, Moses leaves Egypt and lives with the people in Midian for a few years (Exodus 2:15). I'm wondering what Moses' religious environment was like while he was living there. I know his ...
9
votes
6answers
16k views

Why did God change Jacob's name to Israel?

I am now reading the book of Genesis, and I have noticed that God changes certain people's names, such as Abram to Abraham and Jacob to Israel. Why does He change the names? What does that symbolize? ...
9
votes
2answers
213 views

How do we reconcile the futility of Ecclesiastes with the reward of heaven?

There's no question that Christianity believes in heaven. We have a tag here heaven filled with questions about it. Having said this, there are many places in the Old Testament that speak of the ...
9
votes
3answers
479 views

Why is Jesus the Son called the Father in Isaiah 9:6?

In providing this answer with respect to recognizing the Trinity in the Old Testament, I noticed that Jesus is called the Father which could be confusing when trying to understand the Trinity. In what ...
9
votes
1answer
1k views

Old testament: where is Eternal Life and Judgement discussed?

When Jesus was teaching of eternal life (Rich man and Lazarus, also Martha and Mary's brother Lazarus being raised from death) the people listening didn't think it was a new and novel idea: your soul ...
8
votes
6answers
11k views

What does it mean “my God my God why have you forsaken me”?

What is the correlation between these two scripture? Why Jesus felt forsaken if he knew what was going on? Why was it mentioned in Old Testament as well as New Testament(in two places)? Psalm ...
8
votes
1answer
3k views

Why are the first five books of the old testament named differently in some translations?

In my (norwegian) Bible, the first five books are titled the first through fifth books of Moses, instead of Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, etc., which appear to be the common English names. The names of ...
8
votes
6answers
3k views

Why did God create a new covenant?

Why did God create a new covenant? It seems as if he had a covenant set in place in the Old Testament and provided a means for Israel to follow the covenant and offer sacrifices to atone for their ...
8
votes
3answers
105 views

What is the justification for applying God's promises to Israel to modern day Christians?

One of the favourite verse, used as encouragement, is this from Jeremiah 29:11 "For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give ...
7
votes
3answers
173 views

According the infallibility of scripture, do ancient near east laws (ANE laws) really explain the derivation of the laws of Moses?

In the last 100 years, archaeology has discovered many ancient bodies of law including Sumerian, Babylonian, Hittite, Assyrian and Canaanite ancient laws. This has caused a lot of significant hoopla ...
7
votes
3answers
220 views

Does the Old Testament foretell the time in history in which the Messiah would come (the first time)?

I understand that the Old Testament prophecies many different things about the Messiah who was to come, including the virgin birth, His suffering, His resurrection, etc. However, is there anything ...
7
votes
2answers
276 views

Was “eye for an eye” law in the O.T. imperative or only permissive?

Was "eye for an eye" law in the O.T. permissive or imperative in its nature? What I mean here is that if somebody took my eye in that time and I were one of the Israelites, then I could have taken ...
7
votes
2answers
959 views

What is the “veil” that covers the heart when the Old Testament is read?

2 Corinthians 3:13-18 (NIV) We are not like Moses, who would put a veil over his face to prevent the Israelites from seeing the end of what was passing away. But their minds were made ...
7
votes
3answers
2k views

How was the Old Testament compiled?

While this question is similar to this question, I'm certain the answer will be very different, and far more complex.... How was the Old Testament compiled?
7
votes
2answers
99 views

Why do the Jews in the OT in Joshua, Kings, Chronicles always list their war spoils after each battle?

I have my doubts of the motivations, as we only ever hear of how great it was to fight enemy X and take their women, sheep and gold. Is this a fair statement? Why don't the Hebrews ever attack ...
7
votes
1answer
463 views

To what are the scriptures referring when they speak of the books of the “chronicles of the kings”?

In the books of 1 and 2 Kings, there are quite a few places where the author refers to "the Book of the Chronicles of the Kings of Judah" or "the Book of the Chronicles of the Kings of Israel". ...
7
votes
1answer
964 views

What happened to the Book of the Law?

2 Kings 22 (NIV) 8 Hilkiah the high priest said to Shaphan the secretary, “I have found the Book of the Law in the temple of the Lord.” He gave it to Shaphan, who read it. 11 When the ...
7
votes
1answer
413 views

Are there Old Testament references to the length of Jesus earthly ministry?

The Old Testament references Jesus death and resurrection. I've always wondered why did Jesus have only 3 years of time (or 3 1/2 ) as a preacher and teacher. I suppose you could say the time was ...
7
votes
2answers
186 views

Was removing one's shoes a special sign of respect?

In Exodus 3:5 KJV God tells Moses to remove his shoes: And he said, Draw not nigh hither: put off thy shoes from off thy feet, for the place whereon thou standest is holy ground. There is no ...
7
votes
1answer
370 views

Were there provisions for salvation for non-Hebrews in the OT?

One of the significant points of Jesus ministry and the evangelism done by the early apostles seems to be their going to "gentile" nations and preaching that they too were recipients of God's plan of ...
7
votes
1answer
74 views

Why was Jeremiah treated well by the Babylonians?

Jeremiah was persecuted, and all but killed by his countrymen, the Israelis. But when they were conquered by the Babylonians, he was rescued and treated well by the conquerers. ...
7
votes
3answers
5k views

How could the Egyptian magicians do what God did through Moses?

In Exodus when God performed miracles through Moses and Aaron, the Egyptian magicians did the same things that God did, How is that possible ? The first time: Exodus 7:10-13 So Moses and ...
7
votes
2answers
1k views

Does Numbers 5:11-22 describe sactioned abortion?

Numbers 5:11-22 NIV 11 Then the Lord said to Moses, 12 “Speak to the Israelites and say to them: ‘If a man’s wife goes astray and is unfaithful to him 13 so that another man has sexual ...
6
votes
5answers
3k views

Where does the Old Testament mention “the devil”?

Yesterday, New York Magazine published an interview with U.S. Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia, in which is he quoted as saying that he believes "the Devil" has given up taking possession of ...
6
votes
7answers
658 views

Commandment about idols and idolatry in OT

God continually tells the people throughout the Hebrew Bible (Old Testament) to not turn to idolatry. Exodus 20:4 says: “You shall not make for yourself a carved image, or any likeness of ...
6
votes
2answers
106 views

Why is the Ark always depicted as a ship?

All the depictions of Noah's Ark picture it in the shape of a ship. However, the Ark had no need for navigation. And the first known ship shaped vessels were those of the Vikings, who had harnessed ...
6
votes
1answer
2k views

Why was David disqualified from building the temple?

In 2 Samuel 7, King David seems to have a heart to build a temple for God. However, he seems to be disqualified for some reason, but his son is identified as the one who will build it instead. What ...
6
votes
2answers
209 views

Can the God of the Old Testament be seen as a consistent moral law giver?

There seems to be instances when God tolerates sin, since it is an improvement over the cultural conditions of the time. For instance, the laws regarding the treatment of slaves some have argued were ...
6
votes
1answer
493 views

Is the Christian Old Testament the Jewish Bible?

Is the Christian old testament comprised of exactly the same books that are in the Jewish Bible (I think labelled Tanakh)? Are there any differences between the Christian old testament and the Jewish ...
5
votes
3answers
3k views

Which are the parts of the Old Testament that point to Jesus?

I'm aware of the prophecy in Genesis about someone who will crush the serpent's head, as well as the parts of Isaiah, especially the Suffering Servant. Which other parts of the Old Testament point to ...
5
votes
5answers
2k views

Is the Old Testament a Jewish book?

Is the Old Testament a Jewish religous book and should it be discarded by Christians today? If not what does it add to Christians today?
5
votes
2answers
4k views

What does the story of Noah's Ark foreshadow in the New Testament?

I have seen Noah's Ark listed one of the "types" in Scripture--something that occurred, but that also foreshadowed something else that would come later. What exactly, then, does the Ark of Noah ...
5
votes
6answers
240 views

Why is the Old Testament included in the bible if we are no longer under those old laws?

If we are no longer under old laws, why is it necessary to read the Old Testament?