Why We Read OT

Israel’s history and witness to their experience are of interest because we read as communities who seek to experience the same God. Reading the Old Testament (OT) as scripture suggests our stories are interconnected and have transformative power for our communities and us (Birch, Brueggemann, Fretheim, Petersen, 2005).  I appreciate the presentation that while reading the OT we must understand that it has been constructed as a theological testimony and not solely as historical record. This theology has different contexts of time, place, and society, and speaks presently to a similar diversity of people and contexts. While effectively reading the Bible one should be self aware and critical, understanding that others too, receive and interpret from their own contexts. Honest readings of both testaments may be unsettling and make us uncomfortable in our present circumstances, but in believing both testaments as scripture we believe that the Bible speaks of past and present issues for all the nations. Histories and the stories of our current lives are woven together through the Bible. “Gods power, love, justice, redemption, judgment, compassion, and faithfulness are all known in the OT (Birch, Brueggemann, Fretheim, Petersen, 2005), as well as Gods grace. Since, the OT is a scriptural theological testimony of God’s works written for all the worlds diversely broken people, it manifests as an empowering tool for responding to a broken world.

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