The God of the Old & New Testaments; Same or Different?
by Billy Dyer
Doesn’t it seem as if there is a lot of violence and wrath in the Old Testament? Surely this cannot be the same God as the one the Apostle John told us is love (1st John 4:8). Many people, including Christians, struggle with this concept. It is nothing new. Marcion, a 2nd Century “Christian” (I use that term lightly here), pushed this very belief. It led him to reject the entire Old Testament and only accept part of the New Testament as Scripture.5.99!
Was Marcion right? Is there a different God of the Old & New Testaments? The answer, if you want to attempt to agree with the Bible, is NO!!!
Before showing why Marcion is wrong we must ask this question; “Does the New Testament portray God differently than the Old Testament?” The answer to this question is; YES, in a sense. Look at what John 1:14-18 says:
And the Word became flesh, and dwelt among us, and we saw His glory, glory as of the only begotten from the Father, full of grace and truth…For of His fullness we have all received, and grace upon grace. For the Law was given through Moses; grace and truth were realized through Jesus Christ. No one has seen God at any time; the only begotten God who is in the bosom of the Father, He has explained Him.
Is there a different God? NO. Is God pictured differently? YES. The distinction we see between the God of the Old & New Testament is one of degree not quality. That is, as John 1:14-18 states, we see a clearer or more full picture of God after the Cross, not a different type of God. God’s character is unchanging (Hebrews 13:8; Ps 102:27; Mal 3:6). Therefore, even though some claim to see a difference in God’s character between the Old & New Testament we affirm there really is not one…
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