And you know that from infancy you have known the sacred Scriptures, which are able to give you wisdom for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus. All Scripture is inspired by God and is profitable for teaching, for rebuking, for correcting, for training in righteousness, So that the man of God may be complete, equipped for every good work.—2 Timothy 3:15-17
There are many reasons to study the Old Testament. For one, the Old Testament lays the foundation for the teachings and events found in the New Testament. The Bible is a progressive revelation. If you skip the first half of any good book and try to finish it, you will have a hard time understanding the characters, the plot, and the ending. In the same way, the New Testament is only completely understood when we see its foundation of the events, characters, laws, sacrificial system, covenants, and promises of the Old Testament.
The top reasons why we should study the Old Testament are:
1. Because of the countless lessons it contains for us.
2. We find guidance for our own lives.
3. We are exhorted to trust God no matter what (Daniel 3).
4. We learn to stand firm in our convictions (Daniel 1)
5. Await the reward of faithfulness (Daniel 6).
6. We learn it is best to confess sin early and sincerely instead of shifting blame (1 Samuel 15).
7. We learn not to toy with sin, because it will find us out (Judges 13—16).
8. We learn that our sin has consequences not only for ourselves but for our loved ones (Genesis 3)
9. Our good behavior has rewards for us and those around us (Exodus 20:5–6).
In summary, the Old Testament allows us to learn how to love and serve God, and it reveals more about God’s character. It shows through repeatedly fulfilled prophecy why the Bible is unique among holy books—it alone is able to demonstrate that it is what it claims to be: the inspired Word of God. In short, if you have not yet ventured into the pages of the Old Testament, you are missing much that God has available for you.