You need to understand the Old Testament before you can understand the New Testament

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Understand Jesus came to perfect the Old Testament Recognize Jesus as the New Adam List the four types of books that make up the Old Testament

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Become familiar with the books of the OT Become familiar with the chronology of OT events Understand the concept of typology Understand the dating method of OT writers

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Fulfill: To complete or accomplish totally. Genealogy: The study of ancestry. A list on someone¶s ancestors. Law: A rule of conduct enforced in a society. Also the traditional name (in Hebrew, ³Torah´) of the first five books of the OT, also known as the Pentateuch or the Books of Moses. These five books are called the Law because they contain many rules and regulations, including the Ten Commandments.

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Old Testament (OT): The forty-six books of Scripture written by Israelites before the coming of Jesus Christ. Pentateuch: The first five books of the OT. From the Greek word for ³five´. Prophet: One who speaks the message of God to the people. Some prophets foretold future events, while others preached against the unholiness of their time.

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Type: An event or person in Scripture that points forward to a later event or person. The type has similar virtues or other qualities as its fulfillment. Typology: The study of types in Scripture. Wisdom Literature: A style of Hebrew literature that meditates on important truths. Wisdom literature utilizes poems, teachings, and other means of communicating these truths.

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³The book of the genealogy of Jesus Christ, the son of David, the son of Abraham.´ Mt 1:1 Genealogy (a Greek word that means the study of ancestry) is a summary of Old Testament history.

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The New Testament fulfills the OT. The OT is an indispensible part of Sacred Scripture. Its books are divinely inspired and retain a permanent value for the Old Covenant has never been revoked. (CCC 121)

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Indeed, ³the economy of the OT was deliberately so oriented that it should prepare for and declare in prophecy the coming of Christ, redeemer of all men.´ (DV 15, CCC 122)

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There are 46 books in the OT. There are four main types of books:
Law History Wisdom Prophecy

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The first five books of the OT were considered the most important in the Jewish tradition. These are sometimes called the Pentateuch which comes from the Greek word for ³five volumes´ Genesis (Greek for ³beginning´) tells the story of the creation of the world and the beginning of the nation of Israel.

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Exodus (Greek for ³going out´) tells the story of the Israelites¶ escape from Egypt (where they had become slaves) and their wandering in the desert on the way to Canaan, the Promised Land. Leviticus is a book of laws, most of which have to do with religious observances. Numbers is so named because it gives a census of all the tribes of Israel.

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Deuteronomy is Greek for ³second law´. It repeats some of the laws in the earlier books but it also gives new laws about how the Israelites will live in the Promised Land.

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In the 1800¶s scholars attempted to figure out what sources went into the final books of the Pentateuch. J, E, D, and P is their theory. J, ³Jehovist´ or ³Yahwist´ source. E, ³Elohist´ source D, the ³Deuteronomistic source P the ³Priestly´ source Whatever sources are used, Moses was the substantial influence as author and legislator in the Pentateuch.

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This group of books tells the history of the people of Israel, from the conquest of Canaan through the end of the kingdoms of Israel and Judah and on to the restoration of Jerusalem. Joshua tells how the Israelites²led by Joshua, the successor of Moses²began their conquest of Canaan. Judges continues the story of the conquest of Canaan after the death of Joshua.

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Ruth, set in the time of the Judges, tells the story of a foreign woman who converts to the worship of the True God. 1 Samuel tells the tragic story of the first King of Israel, Saul. 2 Samuel continues the story of David after the death of Saul. 1 Kings continues with the reign of David¶s son Solomon, who makes Israel a mighty empire and is famous for his wisdom.

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2 Kings tells how Israel¶s two kingdoms, Judah and Israel, grew more deeply divided by falling away from God and turning to foreign idols. 1 Chronicles tells much of the same history contained in 1 and 2 Samuel, but from another point of view. 2 Chronicles continues where 1 Chronicles left off, retelling some of the same events that were recorded in 1 and 2 Kings.

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Ezra tells how some of the Jews are allowed to come back to Jerusalem after a long exile in Babylon, and how they rebuild the Temple and try to restore the pure worship of the True God. Nehemiah continues the story begun in Ezra, telling how the returned exiles restore the city of Jerusalem and promise to live the Law of Moses.

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Tobit is the story of a pious man who, even in exile, scrupulously follows the Law. His son is also faithful to the Lord, and the story ends with the son rich and happily married. Judith tells how a heroic woman saves Israel by a clever strategy. Esther tells about a heroic Israelite woman who becomes Queen of Persia.

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There are several different kinds of books in this section. Most of them are written in verse. Job is a long poem that asks a hard question: Why does God let bad things happen even to people who have done nothing wrong? Psalms is a collection of religious poems or songs, many of them attributed to King David.

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Proverbs is a collection of wise sayings, many of them attributed to King Solomon. Ecclesiastes is a long meditation on the ³vanity´² that is, the complete pointlessness²of worldly things. Song of Solomon is the world¶s most famous love poem, in which a bride and groom alternately speak of their love for one another. Since the earliest times, the Church has seen the poem as an allegory of Christ¶s love for his Church.

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Wisdom, whose full title is the Wisdom of Solomon, is a poem in praise of wisdom, with a long section on how patient God has been with human folly. Sirach is a book about how to live a good life. The author tells us how to live in the real world without compromising our faith in God.

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Isaiah has some of the clearest prophecies of the coming of Christ in the whole OT. Jeremiah is called by God to foretell the destruction of Judah and call on the people to repent. Lamentations is a book of poems (attributed to Jeremiah) bemoaning the destruction of Jerusalem.

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Baruch, supposed to have been written at Babylon by a disciple of Jeremiah, prophesies a New Covenant with the people of Israel²this time an everlasting covenant. Ezekiel wrote at about the same time as Jeremiah. His book is full of strange visions, in which the message from God is given in symbolic pictures.

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Daniel tells the story of a Jewish prophet who gained a high place in the court of Babylon during the Exile. The prophets from Hosea to Malachi are known as the ³Minor Prophets.´ That doesn¶t mean their messages are less important. They are called ³minor´ (Latin for ³smaller´) only because their books are shorter.

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Hosea tells us not only the prophet Hosea¶s words, but also the story of his marriage. Joel warns of the divine judgment that will come to Judah. Amos brings a stern message of repentance to Israel at the height of the Northern Kingdom¶s prosperity.

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Obadiah, the shortest book in the OT, foretells the downfall of Edom, traditional enemy of Judah. Jonah tells a story about a very reluctant prophet who tried to run away when God sent him to the wicked city of Nineveh. Micah pronounces judgment against the wicked who take bribes and exploit the poor.

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Nahum foretells the end of Nineveh, the center of the bloody Assyrian Empire. Habakkuk again pronounces judgment against the wicked, but also preaches comfort to the righteous, who will live by faith. Zephaniah moves beyond Israel and Judah to pronounce God¶s judgment against the whole earth.

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Haggai leads the effort to rebuild the Temple in Jerusalem Zechariah, who lives at the same time as Haggai, also works to have the temple rebuilt. Malachi warns the returned exiles that God is not satisfied with just the form of worship.

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The two books of the Maccabees fill in the gap between the Prophets and the New Testament. 1 Maccabees tells the story of the Maccabean revolt as a historian would tell it, starting with the background and telling the events in order. 2 Maccabees tells part of the same story from a religious point of view.

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We count our years from the birth of Christ (either BC ³before Christ´ or AD ³anno domini´ which means ³in the year of our lord). Most ancient peoples counted the years from the beginning of the reign of the current king, or from some important event in the recent past.

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The OT contains more that simply the history of Israel. Everywhere in the OT, we see things that make us think of the NT. God writes history the way we write books. When we look at the OT, we see many things that point forward toward the NT, or toward other events in the OT. Because God is the author of history, events in history also point forward to other events.

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When something in history points forward to something else in the future, we call the earlier thing a type of the later thing. Typology is one of our most important tools for understanding the OT.

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