Patricia Hofer

Old Testament’s purpose

“The Lord shall cut off all flattering lips, and the tongue that speaketh proud things…” (KJ Psalms 12:3-4) The Old Testament doesn’t always make us comfortable or comforted. Passages like these are almost impossible to justify or explain. … What has helped me in reading such verses is a conclusion drawn by both CS Lewis and Rudolf Otto. They saw the Old Testament as a record of religious growth and maturation. A theological scholar and student of the Bible, Otto determined that there is “something Eternal” that was directing and revealing Himself in “that great connected development of the Judaic religion” (170). And in a published letter, Lewis wrote something similar about the Bible. He called it “a process,” a record of belief that was, at first, “hardly moral,” sometimes “not unlike the Pagan religions.” And yet, the Israelites’ religious worship did mature to the point where it became “the religion of the great prophets and Our Lord Himself” (Collected Letters, Vol. 3, 608). Studying that process helps us because we are in a process too. That’s why the struggling times and faltering efforts of the children of Israel ring true to us. (Drawn from Living Large, chapter 43, ©️ 2013)

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *