As Christians this side of Easter Sunday, we often spend time focusing on the New Testament and we tend to forget the Old Testament is full of rich teaching, too. I have recently turned to my Old Testament to sit at the feet of some great teachers.
J. Vernon McGee’s radio program, Through the Bible, has been a wonderful part of my mornings. Currently the program is airing the messages from the book of Leviticus, not a book commonly taught, but still full of perspective on how to live. On Sundays at church, we are continuing to study King Saul and King David.
The thing I am learning as I study Leviticus and the David narrative is that God was weaving His redemption story thousands of years before Christ. Leviticus is the book of Laws given to Moses when the Israelites were wandering in the wilderness. It seems full of Do and Don’t and the measurements of how to make altars, etc. And yet, God shows us how sin can infect us and how we can be separated from other believers (see Leprosy laws). We learn how the Day of Atonement is just a whisper of Good Friday.
And then there is David, who is often used as a symbolic Christ in the Old Testament. We read about his mercy, grace, and justice as he ruled Israel. Including his treatment of Jonathan’s son, Mephibosheth. David had made a promise to care for Jonathan’s family when he became king. His best friend, Jonathan, was dead, as were Jonathan’s brothers, and father, Saul. So who was there to care for, if all were dead?
A former servant of Saul’s, Ziba told David of Mephibosheth, Jonathan’s son. Mephibosheth had been living in obscurity and with very little, a crippled man since he was a child, he had no way to work, fight in battle, or manage any land. Immediately, David called for Mephibosheth to come to meet him. According to the laws at that time, it was common to kill all of the previous leaders and their family to keep them from rising up against the new ruler.
Imagine lying on the floor in front of the king, knowing that he could call for your death. Suddenly, the king tells you to rise and says, “I will restore your lands,” (2 Samuel 9:6-8). David took Mephibosheth and raised him up to a position of honor and blessed him for the rest of his life. Just as Jesus called us to Him, knowing we deserved death, and instead were given life abundantly and a seat at the King’s table.
A mentor and I were discussing studies to do in the new year and realized studying Scripture by reading the Bible during the next year, would be the best idea. Reviewing, re-reading, and refreshing our hearts with God’s word cover-to-cover was the way we would grow in our Faith Journey.
What about you, Dear Ones? What are you going to study next year? Be intentional in your decision and guard that time fiercely, you may find yourself doing overtime in the Old Testament.