The Gospel in the Old Testament?
by Pr. Dave Mann
Some have mistakenly believed that the Old Testament is only filled with the Law and judgment and the wrath of a vengeful God and that the New Testament only contains the grace and mercy and gospel of our loving God. Not so! Today’s text is one of many passages in the Old Testament that clearly announces the good news of the kingdom.
Come, buy wine and milk without money and without cost!
Amazingly, the holy God of the universe is inviting straying sinners to return to the Lord – without fear, without shame, without threat of punishment. Are you thirsty? Come to the water. Are you broke? Come, buy and eat. But how? Isn’t God going to require of me at least something in exchange for what he will give me? Nope, nothing. Everything we have is worthless anyway!
We humans are so foolish. We spend money on what does not satisfy. We work ourselves to death to get more and more money to spend on sleek cars, opulent houses, the latest clothing, flashy jewelry, and more. But once we get what we have coveted, it is not long before it does not satisfy. The allure of worldly things quickly fades. In the end, the only thing that satisfies is God himself. And he has given himself fully and freely so that we can be wholly satisfied in him.
Augustine said it well, “O Lord, you have made us for yourself. And our heart is restless until it finds its rest in thee.”
Surely you will summon nations you know not, and nations you do not know will come running to you, because of the Lord your God...
But our personal salvation is not all there is in the heart of God. When we are drawn into this loving everlasting covenant, God reveals to us that he wants to use us as key players to bring the gospel to the nations. God plans that we have the privilege of announcing the good news to others. It begins with those closest to us but then extends to the ends of the earth.
You will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth (Acts 1:8).
This is the gospel that the Lord has announced throughout the Bible, in both Testaments--free, full, complete salvation in Jesus.
O Lord, you are the same God throughout all ages. You have not changed. You do not evolve. The same grace, the same love, the same mercy you have shown to your people in all generations. I thank you that you have chosen and given me the saving faith to trust in Jesus. Allow me to share this good news with others, both near and far, in Jesus’ name, Amen.