Why has the study of Christianity become so Old Testament-based in recent years?
Growing up Catholic, I always felt the emphasis was on the philosophy and spirit of Christ. Old Testament study and emphasis by modern day Christians often seems to me , despite the obvious historical connection, the antithesis of Christianity. I really can't recognize the Christianity I knew with the rhetoric of modern day Christians. Many of their personal interactions appear Christian, but not their political leanings. What happened?
Perhaps the renewed interest in the Old Testament stems from the interest in biblical prophesy, most of which goes back to the Old Testament. In this day and time, people (Christians and others) want to understand what's going on, and why.
Susan: There would not be an "interest in biblical prophesy" when one is filled with the Holy Spirit for it "teaches & guides us into ALL truth" (Jn 14:26; 16:13) and one would "understand what's going on, and why." Matt 6:33. STUDY (II Tim 2:1
I think the Christianity you grew up with is still alive and well. It's just that the controlling, frightened people who want to go back to the good old days of Old Testament living are loud. They also have more ways of spreading their messages of hate and fear than they did before. They existed before; they just never made themselves heard as loudly as they do now. Those messages probably resonate with frightened, angry people with absent or weak morals.
Read a certain way, the Old Testament supports lifestyles like those lead by the Duggars, giving men what they see as God-sanctioned ownership of women and girls and the ability to do whatever they want to them. It also allows them to do whatever they want and silence their natural empathy by believing God thinks they are special and that everyone not like them is not.
It allows people to use other people as resources like crops, tools, or beasts of burden without feeling normal human guilt.
I guess that's a powerful draw for people who want to bring back race and social class-based unpaid labor, child labor, deadly punishments for differences, segregation, legally supported male control of women, or similar things.
People are drawn to philosophies that support their needs and desires as righteous. People who want to be kind and loving will be drawn to kind and loving philosophies. Fearful, controlling, power-hungry personalities will be drawn to beliefs that support taking what they want and hurting whoever they want without repercussions. Since most of society likes (or at least doesn't hate) kind and loving philosophies, people who keep fearful and hateful beliefs tend to isolate themselves and their families.
I think that the fearful and hateful philosophies are doomed because the only way to raise new generations of frightened, hateful believers is to isolate them from normal human society. If new generations are exposed to the world outside the dogma, they'll learn people are people and every bit as good and deserving of love and respect as they are.
Hear, hear! My grandaughter was raised by a Tea Party father and a hard-shell Baptist mother and home schooled. In college she liked the new world that opened up. She didn't go wild, but she did become "normal" and did things like piercing her ears.
When I was a child in the Baptist Church, the emphasis was on the philosophy and spirit of Christ. However, we were warned that in the "end times" there would be a rise of evil. We were warned of "false prophets" who were "wolves in sheep’s clothing," and who would be very attractive to Christians. I think this is their prophecy coming true. December 2012 was the transition point into the Age of Aquarius from the Age of Pisces. This is a physical transition in the heavens that is a part of scientific astronomy, not just astrologers' BS. Spiritually, it marked a return of Christ to the hearts of humanity who would accept him.
I believe this is the "end times" spoken of in my former church because most of the prophesies fit into the schema.
Those of us who believe in metaphysical spirituality believe in Jesus Christ, but our belief extends outside the Bible. We believe that the emphasis on the bad in the Old Testament is part of the death knell of evil because the emphasis of modern day Christians seems to be on the evil aspects of the OT, not the beauty like the Psalms. It tends to kick women, racial minorities, and people of different sexual orientation, especially if they are down. There is a perpetual battle between the forces of good and evil that will go on until one or the other prevails, and those so-called “Christians” with a streak of evil will migrate to the Old Testament for their validation. Jesus preached love and forgiveness. He tried to do away with judgment and stoning. Only those with evil propensities would try to revert to the times Jesus was trying to abolish.
It hasn't, and that's the problem None of God's word has become obsolete. We need the OT to compare with the NT to discover the true meanings. Christianity bases their beliefs only on the NT, and should include the OT
The bible is about God, and salvation, and no one else
Mara: "Christianity bases their beliefs only on the NT, and should include the OT" OT Jesus concealed-NT Jesus revealed! See response to Rich! How can we consider OT "obsolete" when It taught us (Gal 3:24-25)? But now in CURRENT dispensation-GRACE!
I have not seen this to be true in Christian circles. BUT in the churches of men it is so strong because that is the only place the hireling pastors that have replaced the men of God can find scripture to coerce the sheep into supporting their little kingdoms. The new testament does not give them a means to collect money to support their day dreams so they go back to the now dead and defunct law of Moses to manipulate scripture to fit their needs. No, THEIR desires for their kingdoms without regard for the Kingdom of God.
Your growing up has been no different than any number of people that will read and comment here. For the most part nothing has changed. We are all being fed what ever will perpetuate the system that is doing the feeding. In all cases I've found it is not God and His word that people are feeding on daily but some hybrid manipulation by man. People want to eat seedless grapes so man builds and manipulates the plant to be seedless. Man wants to feed on the word that doesn't have any seeds in it. Man is so willing to serve up what ever the wallet or power will support. Itching ears comes to mind.
Although the believers of fifty years ago were no more correct than the believers of today they still had beliefs that today are being changed to include all manner of beliefs and lifestyles. You can find Baptist joining hands with the Catholics that years ago would have boiled them or burned them at the stake for not believing as desired by the religion in charge at the time. Christ came not boiling or burning people but only asking that you follow Him. Today no one knows the Christ the scriptures speak of because He has been changed to represent a personal Jesus in everyone's life. Use the words love, acceptance, and Jesus in the same sentence and you are good to go. Mention repent, die to self, no church building, no false trinity god and you are weird and should be shunned.
Read the bible, read several versions of the bible and you will find that over time even the bible has been changed to reflect what those behind the translation desire it to read. Man will change and mold anything to please himself. One thing that hasn't been written out of the bible is the constant going astray of those that claim to follow God. God allows the drifting to a point then allows them to be take in by others.
Where the hope lies is in the writings of the bible you can still find that God always had a remnant to deal with, a small called out group of people that had not strayed from Him. Today God is still working with a remnant and will until the end. The New Testament doesn't delete the Old Testament as the Old doesn't delete the new. The ways of man still twist both testaments to suit their needs. God has become so redefined by man that most believe the god of Buddha, Islam, and Christianity are all the same God. If the God you believe in does not have a Son named Jesus you believe in a false god.
The Bible consists of different dispensations and we currently live under the dispensation of "Grace!" The Old Testament prophesied the coming of Jesus (Jesus concealed). He came in New Testament "fulfilling" Old Testament (Jesus revealed). If "fulfilled," why return to the 613 "laws" God knew we could not keep?
Until His coming, all were under "law." Galatians 3:23-25 says "But before faith came, we were kept under the law, shut up unto the faith which should afterwards be revealed. Wherefore, the law was our "schoolmaster" to bring us unto Christ, that we might be justified by faith. But after faith is come, we are no longer under a "schoolmaster." Therefore, the Old Testament is for "beginner's in Christ" with the intent of condemnation and a preparatory discipline which has been "fulfilled!"
According to Scripture, we, as believers, should be "growing" and not "returning" to previous dispensations or did Christ die in vain?
ALL Scripture (both Old Testament and New Testament) is "inspired by God" (II Timothy 3:16) and should NOT be considered "irrelevant!" However, since OT has been "fulfilled" (if one has faith), why return to "sacrifices, laws and works?"
I guess we are tired of hearing this and do not realize the fact that Satan loves it when we do not "continue" (as Scripture did) to "study" and "GROW" (not returning to previous dispensations since we are no longer "beginners in Christ" and OT has been fulfilled) and we should "...press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Jesus Christ" (Philippians 3:14). II Corinthians 3:18 says that we "...are changed into the same image from "glory to glory..." "growing" and not "returning" to Scripture that has been fulfilled!
But is this not Satan's job "To kill, steal and destroy?" (John 10:10). Be not deceived! Christ has died, sent us the Comforter (Holy Spirit) to teach and guide us (John 14:26; 16:13) and left instructions sent via the Holy Spirit (Jesus) through the apostles (Acts 2:42) for us to receive salvation. Galatians 1:6-9 says "If ANYONE teaches any other gospel (other than the gospel of Christ given by the Holy Spirit (Jesus) to the apostles) LET HIM BE ACCURSED!"
Revelations 21:12 says " And the wall of the city had twelve "foundations," and in them the names of the twelve apostles of the Lamb." Should we not build upon that foundation which is Jesus (Holy Spirit)?
We should live in the "current" dispensation & "GROW!"
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