DIVISIONS OF THE BIBLE
“……..rightly dividing the word of truth.” [II Timothy 2:15)
For all practical purposes Bible history can be divided into three main periods; the Patriarchal, the Mosaic and the Christian age.
The Patriarchal age designates the period in which God ruled through the Patriarchs. A Patriarch is simply the father of a family. God first taught His people by talking with the fathers in each family and they taught the rest of the family.
The Mosaic age also called the [Law of Moses, Old Law and Mosaical Period] began as one would expect with Moses. God chose to lead His people through Moses. God gave Moses the law and Moses taught the people.
The Christian age is the period in which we are now living. Our present age of Bible history did not begin until after the death of Jesus Christ (Hebrews 9:15-17). Jesus was born near the close of the Mosaic age and was subject to the Law of Moses. However, when Christ was crucified, the Law of Moses was fulfilled. “For Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to everyone that believeth.” (Romans 10:4) “Then hath he said, Lo, I am come to do thy will. He taketh away the first, that he may establish the second” (Hebrews 10:9).
Most of us have some knowledge of the Bible. We know that there is an Old Testament and a New Testament. Usually when something is old, it is no longer useful, it has filled its purpose (Hebrews 8:13). This is true with the Old Testament. It has served its purpose according to Galatians 3:24 and Colossians 2:14.
Although the Old Testament is good for our learning (Romans 15:4), no one in the present age is expected to follow it. God expects us to be obedient to Jesus Christ. The Son of God “is the mediator of a better covenant, which was established upon better promises” (Hebrews 8:6).
The people under the Old Testament had to offer animal sacrifices. Today we do not do this because Jesus Christ sacrificed himself for all mankind (Hebrews 9:12). Thus Christ took away the Law of Moses and gave us a better law.
Perhaps this example will help us understand the difference between the Old and New Testaments. A man has a large sum of money and much land. He makes a will in order to divide this among his children when he dies. After this will is made, he adopts several more children. If he were to die, these children would receive nothing. He realizes this to make a new will to include these children also. The old will is still there but it is no good. The will that was drawn up last is the one that will be honoured at the man’s death.
The same is true with the Old and New Testaments. The Old was made, then it was taken away at the death of Christ (Colossians 2:14) and the New Testament then came into effect (Hebrews 10:9).
As we take these lessons we need to check and study all of the Bible references that are given in each lesson.
Lesson 3 will go into detail on the first period of Bible history, the Patriarchal age.
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