Foreword To Old Testament

This Bible Guidebook is written from a Christian viewpoint and based upon Christian insights; but since Jesus Christ was a Jew for whom the Old Testament was his Bible, we need to highlight those themes that we are seeking to illustrate in our selection of Old Testament passages:-

The Old Testament is a written record of God searching out mankind, and mankind's response to God's call. As St. Augustine said, "I would not even have sought you, O Lord, if you had not first found me". Throughout the whole of the Old Testament runs the theme of God in his loving kindness reaching out to mankind.

God is revealed as Creator and Sovereign Lord of all that is. His Creation is good and his purposes for mankind benevolent.

God is represented not only as a loving Father, but one whose judgements stand fast. "God is not mocked", as St. Paul declared (Galatians 6.v.7), and to attempt to thwart the declared will of God entails spiritual death.

The Prophets, or "spokesmen for God" declare God's purposes for his people, giving them warning and encouragement.

Particularly in the Psalter (and elsewhere) we have passages of great beauty that bring strength and comfort to God's people, passages that are dearly beloved by Jew and Christian alike.

The Old Testament is a record of the history of a remarkable people bound together with their God in a Covenant relationship and prepared, as Christians maintain, for the Advent of the "Word made Flesh", the Incarnate Son of God.

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