A professing Christian said something to day that deeply disturbed me: “Either you follow Jesus and love everyone, or you follow the Old Testament, discriminate against gay people, and refuse to eat pork.” When our own fellow Christians are speaking in such a way about the Word of God, it is time to dig in and search for what tremendous gaps there must be in our communication of the Bible’s foundational truths. One thing that might be of benefit is to tear a certain page out of our Bibles completely: that mostly-blank one about two-thirds of the way through which simply says, “NEW TESTAMENT.”
To suggest that the Old and New Testaments are mutually exclusive is to negate not just one, but both. Both testaments declare that God is changeless (Hebrews 13:8, Malachi 3:6, Revelations 1:9, James 1:17), yet I'm hearing it suggested that Jesus is somehow the new and improved "God 2.0" with a more amiable personality and a softer stance on sin (which, by the way, should be a terror and not a comfort - if there ARE variations and shifting shadows in our God, who is to say His change will be to our liking next time around?). Can we possibly think that if God had stopped taking sin seriously, He would have put His own Son through a brutal Roman execution because of it?
Furthermore, 2 Timothy 3:16-17 (which happens to be in the New Testament) declares that ALL Scripture is useful for me to know and implement in my life - not just the parts written in red ink. Yes, “Love one another” is a vitally important command for all believers - because it is the glue that bonds Christians together in unity (Colossians 3:14). Yet I am seeing it used time and again as a point of contention to drive us apart, uniting us instead to the cause of sin. Clumsily wielding this one command as the single answer to all sin issues is a cop-out, not an act of courage (1 Corinthians 5).
What can we do then to prevent such scandalously unbiblical doctrines and strategies from taking root in the body of Christ? We can come to know our (changeless) God from beginning to end - from Genesis to Revelation. We can become skilled handlers of the Truth (2 Timothy 2:15). We can learn His whole heart, rather than just bits and pieces of His words.
And we will be amazed by Him.
Then the Lord passed by in front of him and proclaimed, “The Lord, the Lord God, compassionate and gracious, slow to anger, and abounding in lovingkindness and truth; who keeps lovingkindness for thousands, who forgives iniquity, transgression and sin; yet He will by no means leave the guilty unpunished, visiting the iniquity of fathers on the children and on the grandchildren to the third and fourth generations.” Moses made haste to bow low toward the earth and worship Him.