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Old Testament Summary

Updated on March 25, 2012

The Book of Ruth

Famine plagued the land, and as a result, a man named Elimelech from Bethlehem moved him and his family to a town called Moab. His family-Epharathites consisted of his wife, Naomi and their two sons, Mahlon and Kilion. As time passed, Elimelech died. Eventually his two sons went on to marry Moabite women, one named Ruth and the other Orpah until their end of days, leaving behind three widows. Naomi, show it fit to move herself and the three back to Bethlehem-Land of Judah, for she heard that God blessed them and there was food. As Naomi set forth on the road to the Land of Judah, she urged her two daughter-in-laws to go back to their homes and seek out new husbands to love as they did their dead ones. For Naomi feared that her dead husband Elimelechs’ bloodline would not carry on by her giving birth to sons. Orpah did as told by Naomi but Ruth stated her point of view and refused to leave her side.


Ruth ensured her mother-in-law that she will not leave her but will travel near and far along with her, accepting of her people, and take on the God of her people. Upon returning to Bethlehem, Ruth said to the people, call me Mara proclaiming that she has experienced affliction from the Lord due to her husband and sons deaths. At the time they arrived at Bethlehem, the crops were ready to harvest. Ruth voluntarily suggested going out to the fields where the harvesters were and collect any crops or seedlings left behind. At this very field, which she gleaned, she came to find that a relative named Boaz who was from Elimelechs’ blood owned that field. Boaz arrived there and greeted the harvesters just then a foreman pointed out Ruth and was told positive things. She in returned begged to continue her mission of gleaming behind the harvesters in hopes for food. Boaz seeing her hard work asks of her to come eat with him and his people. She was allowed to continue to glean through the fields were purposeful crops were left as ordered by Boaz. Ruth was able to harvest barely in May and wheat in late June. Sometime around July, Naomi instructed Ruth to dress in her best clothing and go to Boaz’s celebration, where his state of mind would be altered due to being inebriated. Ruth followed her mother-in-law instructions and later lay down by Boaz’s feet where he then awoke to see Ruth.


She expressed her need to be free for he was their “kinsman-redeemer”. He replied with the knowledge of man of closer status held the first rights but endured her to not worry for the issue will be resolved the following day. Boaz gave her an abundant supply of grain to take back to her mother-in-law and rushed her before the morning shy came for he wanted to deter rumors. Meanwhile Boaz went to the gates where legal transactions were handled in order to state before witnesses that Ruth was selling the land of her relative. Boaz saw it fit that only he or his people should be the next to own the fields for they were kinsman-redeemers of Elimelech. As it was, the redemption and transfer of the land was signified by handing the sandal to the new owner. The witnesses-elders gave blessings to Boaz’s offspring, to the women Rachel and Leah who did build upon the house of Israel.


Esther

Esther was a queen, a servant, a Jewish woman, and guardianship of Mordecai. This third year of time in power begins with the Xerxes. Xerxes, the king held a party where he was exuberated. He demanded his wife to show off her beauty to the crowd. When she refused his demands, he divorced her. Once he sobered up, he realized the mistake he made divorcing his wife but by that time, it was too late to reestablish with her. The kings’ attendant has searched for young women, bringing them to the palace for the king to choose one as a new wife. He found Esther to be appealing and so he married her. Mordecai was a servant in the palace that was very loyal to the king. Four and a half years later after Esther was queen, she remained to hide her Jewish background. Mordecai overheard a threat to king Xerxes life made by Bigthana and Teresh, two angered guards keeping post at the doorway. He relayed this to Esther, and she told her husband, the king, giving him favor in the king’s eye. The two guards were hung from gallows.


As time passed king, Xerxes appointed Haman, an Agatite a seat in a higher power than that of any noble man. The king told the people to kneel down to him but Mordecai did not. Later he found that Mordecai was a Jew and decided to kill not only him but also his people. On the twelfth month, Haman spoke to king Xerxes proposing an offer but the king refused the offering. His offer was rid the king of the people who did not honor the king’s laws. The king insisted on the thirteenth day, of the twelfth month, “the month of Adar” that every Jew is killed, young and old along with their goods.


When Mordecai heard of the news, he made his clothes of shreds and put on sackcloth and ashes going into the town making disturbing noises. He found Jews crying, fasting, and wearing of the same skin as he. Esther maids then learned of this news also and told. She ordered that he have clothes sent to Mordecai and have Hathach, the king of eunuch to go find out why Mordecai has done this. Upon returning with a response, he told Mordecai that for any man that comes to his whereabouts without being summoned is destine to be killed. Esther then decided to go to the king to ask of him and Haman come and eats at the feat she prepared for them. One a second day, she had Haman and the king to another feast where she requested. Haman heading home seen Mordecai at the king’s gate and grew angered at him for not being of fear in his presence. Upon returning home, he ordered Zaresh, his wife and friends to prepare a gallows, seventy-five feet high to hang Mordecai on in the morning.


On a night the king could not sleep, he chose to read in his book of Chronicles and read how noble Mordecai was to the king, Xerxes and was not honored for it. Haman asked of Mordecai what did he request of in his honor, and it suggested a robe, a horse, and it to be known throughout the streets. After this they did attend, the feast that Esther prepared and was there she asked of her request for her life and her people be spared. King Xerxes asked of her to tell him who made her request such a thing, and she replied with Haman. The king in such anger demanded he be hung from the gallows immediately, but later calling it off, and passed on his signet ring to Mordecai. Mordecai wrote up a policy to be transported to the Jews telling them they are now able to protect themselves, and able to destroy or kill any militia that may harm them and their families. This news was relayed to the town of Susha also who celebrated. Over the course of three days beginning with the thirteenth day of the twelfth month, the Jews assembled their troops in their towns and along all the provinces of king Xerxes and established the power over their enemies. Five hundred men killed in Susha along with Dalphon, Poratha, Parshandatha, Adalia, Aridatha, Arisai, Aspatha and Vaizatha, and ten sons of Haman. Once the defeat was over there were seventy-five thousand men killed. On the fifteenth day the Jews rested and decided to make it a day of to feast, and these days were in a decree and passed along to 127 provinces. Never to be celebrated by the Jews. In the end, Mordecai held a high rank in the eyes of his people, and was second behind king Xerxes.


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Lamenations


The book of Lamentation tells how Jeremiah cried out to God, admitting the sins done by the people in Jerusalem. He wept for himself and the people as the town was in ruins and desolated. In these times, Southern Kingdom leaders and the king Jehoiakim knew Jeremiah as a traitor, for he told of disasters to come. The people viewed his ways of warning them as not having valued his town. He admitted to many sins and ways that they belittled themselves for food, such as with Egypt and Assyria. He compared their persecution and oppression to that greater than Sodom. Expressing to the Lord how the prophets and priests of Jerusalem failed to seek God and practice the Word. Jeremiah praying to God proclaiming that He is reign even after his generation. He asked why has He left them in their times of anguish, begging to have mercy on Jerusalem and to replenish their faith in Him.


Song to remember the Old and New Testaments

Jonah

Jonah heard God speak to him commanded him to go to the town of Nineveh, for He wanted Jonah to preach there in their time of wickedness. Instead of abiding in what God said, he instead went down to Jopa where a boat was to set out for Tarshish. Upon sailing away from land, a powerful wind blew the ship threatening their lives. This caused the sailors to forfeit much cargo by throwing it overboard to lighten the load. The sailors knowing of God’s powers saw it fit to seek out the man who threatened their lives by bringing his bad karma. They “cast lots” which fell on Jonah. Amongst all the trouble the ship experience, Jonah found asleep, resting without worry. The sailors demanded he tell them where his homeland was, who were his people, and what who was causing such a calamity. Jonah replied I am a Hebrew; I serve the Lord, and it is I, which should be tossed into the sea to calm its waters.


The sailors wee of good heart and tried to return to land but the waters grew stronger. They cried out to the Lord begging for mercy, offered sacrifice, and vows for causing the death of Jonah. Shortly after he was thrown into the sea, it grew calm. A giant fish suddenly swallowed Jonah, where he remained for 3 days and 3 nights. Jonah cried out to the Lord, his God, testifying of the Lord’s grace and love for him. He prayed to seek out God through hardships and vowed to make good of things. With this God commanded, the fish to release Jonah for he now had a mission to carry out he was to go to the city of Nineveh. His visit demanded him to stay three days, on the first day, he traveled to Nineveh proclaiming in the forty days there will be an overthrowing. Upon reaching Nineveh, he spoke a decree letting no man or animal able to eat or drink, but allows him or her to only wear sackcloth, and give up any evil or violent mannerisms. God was pleased with their turn from violent and evil ways and had mercy on them.


Malachi

The Lord speaking to Malachi saying have I not been a loving, merciful God to you. Esau son of Jacob chose not to love me and as a result, he will never flourish in his heritage. Wilderness and beasts will destroy Esau’ land and the land shall be called “Wicked Land”. God continues to use examples to further more show his greatness and love. The people of Judea were obedient in not idolizing but they did not practice worshiping. Instead of sacrificing their best offerings, they brought forth their sick, and inferior to sacrifice. The people of Judea did not bring forth their tithes and offerings. Yet they complained to the Lord as to why they are not receiving any word from Him. They began to believe that serving the Lord was in vain.


The prophet Malachi, offered words of assurance telling the people that God was sending a man to prepare them further. When this man arrives, he will be bringing a message, a test of faith to uncover the true believers in the Lord and the false believers. For the false believers will be burned, true believers healed and do great things, this day shall be named “the day of the Lord.” Malachi also told the people that before that “day”, the Lord would send Elijah and he will deliver a ministry of healing and restitution. After this decree, this was the end of the OT and it known to the people that no other books be written thereafter-this was understood. As Simeon and Anna visited temple they had revelations from God. This was the beginning of several hundred years of concentration on how to keep the Law.


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    • Dave Mathews profile image

      Dave Mathews 5 years ago from NORTH YORK,ONTARIO,CANADA

      My favorites are the prophets Ezekiel and Isaiah. I love how they spell out the truth with directness and don't hold back anything.