Why Should I Read the Old Testament?

September 17


Read: Psalm 44:1-3

We have heard it with our ears, O God; our ancestors have told us what you did in their days, in days long ago. With your hand you drove out the nations and planted our ancestors; you crushed the peoples and made our ancestors flourish. It was not by their sword that they won the land, nor did their arm bring them victory; it was your right hand, your arm, and the light of your face, for you loved them.



Why do you think it is important for believers to read the Old Testament even today?


I have often heard Christians complain that they don’t like to read the Old Testament because they have difficulty relating to it. They contend that the law doesn’t apply to them and that the customs and cultures are too foreign to them to make much sense. So why should they bother reading the Old Testament? It’s ancient history.


And that, my friends, is one reason (among many) why we should read the Old Testament. It is ancient His-story. It is the ancient story of God. In the words of the sons of Korah (the authors of Psalm 44), “our ancestors have told us what You did in their days, in days long ago.” God repeatedly commanded His people to “tell your children and grandchildren,” what He did in their lives. The Jewish people had numerous practices and traditions that helped them recall their history. They needed to remember what God did for their ancestors, what He had done for them, and they needed to pass it on to the next generation.


When we read the Old Testament, we are reading words intended to remind us of what God did long ago for the ancestors of our faith. When we read the history of our faith, we learn more about who God is. The Old Testament lays the foundation for the Gospel. We have to know where we’ve been to understand where we are and where we’re going in God’s plan for redemption.


Friend, if you’ve been one to avoid the Old Testament, can I encourage you to crack it open today? Not sure where to start? Check out one of our reading plans at www.backtothebible.org history of our God. 2 Timothy 3:16-17 reminds us that “All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the servant of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.” We cannot be thoroughly equipped if we ignore half of the Bible! All Scripture is useful. Let’s read about the history of our God today.



God, I love to read Your Word. Thank You for revealing Yourself to us through the words of the ancestors of our faith. Amen.

~ Pastor Nat Crawford


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I can honestly say wholeheartedly that the character of our God and Creator is made known more from the OT than NT. May we not forget that our Lord, Jesus always acknowledged the Father as the One doing all the work and not of Himself. In order for believers to know the work of God's hand in us and through us we must know all the attributes of God and best taught and described in the OT.
I read through the whole Bible several years ago, study books from the Old Testament regularly, and am currently using Back to the Bible's chronological reading plan through the Bible. It is a blessing to have the whole Bible!
Holy Father, Your Word endures forever. Your Word is good today as it was yesterday, and I thank You for introducing us to Your prophets, priests, kings, patriarchs and honourable women of old. We need them today as well.
I love read the word of God, it give us his guide to go by of living.
I think it's important and valuable to read through the whole bible. I appreciate reading through the old testament books. In addition to my regular bible, I bought a chronological bible. I'm reading through it for the second time now.
We really must include "in Jesus' name we pray, amen" in every prayer.
For a number of years I didn't read much in the Old Testament, but during this last year I started reading more of the Old Testament and the Bible. Thanks for this devotional today.
I agree with what you say
Lord, help me and guide me through Your word. As I read, help me to get a better understanding of what I am reading. Give me Your discernment. I ask in Jesus ' Mighty name, Amen.
I guess that someone has finally address this problem of the Old Testament, I discovered over 40 years ago that more and more Christians look at the Son as God and discounts Father as God. Which as you no is because more people on want to believe in the New Testament. The Old Testament and the 10 commandments states: “place night other God before me” yet christians violate this very Commandment as well as worship false idols. Yet they do not see it. I too wear a cross to show my faith but I also know that God is the Father and Jesus is his Son and God the Father is Lord and his son Jesus freed me from my sin. Most people only think there are only two parts of the Bible, The Old and New Testaments, but the truth there are actually three parts to the Bible, apocryphal, that was removed from most Christian Bibles in 1812 because protestant priest thought that the writers was not inspired by God, but who gave them them the right to say who was or wasn’t Inspired by God. The protestant priest could be in the very ones who was not inspired by God to help remove them. Priest can only teach you the pathway to follow but it up to each and one of us to take our on journey to find out was the word of God actually mean for you. The only person Thur Jesus Christ can get you to the Father but you. It’s your life personal journey what is use to Provide your fate of salvation light of Eternal life or the darkness and fire of total damnation. It not only about whether or not “You have faith in God”; it is also about does “God have faith in you”?
Hey Stephen. Thanks for your thoughts. I thought I would respond to your comments. The devotional does not focus on that misconception. Many believers are either intimidated by the Old Testament or have been told it doesn't apply to them. Yes, it is true that there is a larger bridge to cross (culturally speaking) for us to grasp the text. But that's not a bridge too far. God's Word is all God-breathed and beneficial for the believer. I hope this helps! Blessings!
Thanks for the feedback, Bob. We never have enough "real estate" to exegete these texts fully. As Galatians makes abundantly clear, the law by no means could save. Only God's grace can save through Christ. Christ came to fulfill the law and not abolish it. We must too remember that. All of Scripture is God-breathed, so read up and be transformed!
I thank God that the first book I read was the Old Testament, it gave me something to feed on. It stirred me heart to keep reading until I was satisfied. I learned so much and wanted to learn more. I felt God's presence through it all. He revealed Him self to me. Thank you Lord, I love reading your Word. Bless all who enjoy reading your Word.
Thank You father for your word! Old and new testaments! I was the same way regarding Old Testament! Why did need to know that ! I started reading the New Testament ( John) snd a lot referred back to the Old Testament! That caught my curiosity and I realized how much they relate and pointed to Jesus ! Thank you Father God Amen ✝️🙏🇺🇸
Pastor Nate ought to write his Commentary on how to read OT and how to accept what is true for us NT believers ! I don't agree with all that is written in OT because that was the Covn't of law for which the Jew in particular had rejected do to unbelief. There are perdiction of the New Covn't in the OT however when I read the OT I lacked discernment of the few instants about the temporarily Law and it's works for external righteousness . I can perfect my flesh to appear holy , righteous and whatever is divine but it's the heart that didn't change in OT law system as now we have a better Covn't of not obedience to the law but of Grace from God to Jesus who came to start a new faith not of the letter but the spirit! Yes go ahead and read the OT but be careful to understand the differences in relationship with God ! Amen
This devotional is focusing on the misconception of a section of the believers that they are not able to relate to the culture that,prevailed in the Old Testament Era of the Israelites. In all probability or infact the Laws and commands God imposed on the Israelites have become the root of the social and political norms and laws adopted by progressive and modern society from the Old Testamnent times to show that God had been the ruler of an enlightened society. Its interesting and wisdom
Praise Lord, this would help me to get an better relationship with our lord savior. Praise the Lord.
Ame In reading the Old Testament I am encouraged that God will act on my behalf he will deliver me he will turn my situation around
Our Lord Jesus refers to the old testament and the prophets quite a lot...and if it's good enough for Jesus...
HIS-Tory is totally amazin
Amen I love the old testament lots of encouragement for today
Last year I decided to read The Bible. I've never read it before. I bought a Catholic one the NABRE. And just started at the beginning. Yes, some books were very hard. It was hard to figure out the geography. Yet I kept going. There are books and stories in there that are so relevant to the New Testament. I'm only just beginning with that now. I finished most of the Gospels and am about to start Acts. I am really excited to finally be in The New Testament, but I wouldn't understand it or appreciate it as much if I hadn't read Elijah, Jeramiah, other prophets, the books of Jonah, Ruth, Lamentations. I won't lie. It was a HUGE commitment. But I kept praying to God to help me continue. And I'm so glad I did!!! 🙏😇🙏😇🙏😇
The Old Testament is the foundation of the Bible. Without it, for me, the Bible is not complete.
Thank you for the old testament.
Right on ! This is so accurate 💖
Thank you pastor for the devotion and I thank God for all God's people Amen
Hallelujah!! Reading the Old Testament is vital in our faith "walk with God". It's "His story" from beginning to end, showing God's love and faithfulness for His people even when they rebelled against Him down through the generations. Also, the Old Testament "is the New Testament hidden", and the "New Testament " is the "Old Testament revealed", A Foreshadowing of Jesus. Father, thank You for the plan of redemption (in Jesus) You had for mankind before You laid the foundation of the world. Thank You for equipping us with Your Word (Bible) enabling us to look back at Your Mighty deeds, and move forward in faith and confidence doing the work You've called us to do for Your glory!
Reading to see how God glorifies his name throughout all of the Bible is so encouraging. You learn that our God is a loving sovereign Lord who takes care of his people. He is a righteous just God who we can count on to make things right. He is also the savior of those who trust in him. Lord Jesus you are the same yesterday today and forevermore. Amen
One of my favorite Scriptures is Romans 15:4 "For whatsoever things were written aforetiime were written for our learning, that we through patience and comfort of the Scriptures might have hope." Be encouraged!
I'm in a bible study group at Church we decided to study from the old testament. At first when you got to who begot who it was boring. Now I've enjoy it because it's showing us how God made way for Jesus coming. It's our history our heritage. God has given us the book of our life. Before and after all the way to the end and beyond. I'm so thankful God chose me to be his family. "One Nation Under God with Liberty and Justice for All." It is amazing how every Chapter runs together with the same thought that Jesus came to save his people. Amen It reminds you to be humble.
I love to read the old testament and i believe God's word then is quite relevant to us today. Look at the book of Amos chapters 5&8