Is God the Same God in Old and New Testaments?

Unchanging and Consistent

How can the God of the Old Testament (where women, children, and the aged are put to the sword) be reconciled with the New Testament concept of Jesus and the Father who is love? First, you must realize that the Bible is a unit, and that the revelation of God in the Old Testament and New Testament is consistent. If it were not consistent, the Bible could not be called truth (John 17:17). However, God is the same and He does not change.

The God, who loves the sinner and will forgive his sin, is the same God who punishes the sinner when he refuses to repent. The nature of God is both love and justice. He loves all people, but must punish those who do not accept His forgiveness and become His children. In the Old Testament many nations turned their backs on God, worshipped idols, demons, and gave themselves over to sexual immorality. Romans 1:18-32 declares God has wrath toward them. “The wrath of God is revealed from Heaven against all ungodliness, and unrighteousness of men, who hold the truth in unrighteousness.”

The book of Romans describes those who have the image of God but do not maintain the knowledge of God, but gave themselves over to uncleanness, fornication, murder, etc. God commanded Israel to eliminate those tribes that had rejected Him, were guilty of idol worship (demonism), abnormal sexual practices, etc. Because they would have polluted God’s people and destroyed the purity of the Messiah line, God in keeping with His nature of judging those who turn against Him, told Israel to eliminate those nations.

Proof that God Loves

God loves each and every person:

  • John 3:16
  • Romans 5:8
  • 1 John 4:7-8
  • 1 John 4:9-10
  • 1 John 4:16
  • 1 John 4:19
  • Titus 3:4
  • 2 Peter 3:9
  • 1 Tim 2:4
  • Isaiah 45:22

God Hates Sin, but Not Sinners

Sometimes in Scripture we read that God hates sinners (see the verses below). The word for ‘hate’ can also mean odious, an enemy or foe. When a person has unrestricted sin, without repentance, working against God, the person becomes the enemy of God. God still loves them (see previous fact), but they became His enemy. God “hates” the sinner, not as we hate – God passionately hates the sin, and sees the person as full of sin, so this person is now the enemy of God (I.e., God sees the person’s sin with hatred, and therefore there is a view of the person with hatred). Remember that God’s ways are not our ways, so his approach to people is different and much more complex than how we view others. (Psalm 5:5, Psalm 11:5, Proverbs 6:16-19, Hosea 9:15) And yet God still desires for His enemies to be saved. (Romans 5:10)

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Dr. Elmer Towns is a college and seminary professor, an author of popular and scholarly works (the editor of two encyclopedias), a popular seminar lecturer, and dedicated worker in Sunday school, and has developed over 20 resource packets for leadership education.His personal education includes a B.S. from Northwestern College in Minneapolis, Minnesota, a M.A. from Southern Methodist University in Dallas, Texas, a Th.M. from Dallas Theological Seminary also in Dallas, a MRE from Garrett Theological Seminary in Evanston, Illinois, and a D.Min. from Fuller Theological Seminary in Pasadena, California.He is co-founder of Liberty University, with Jerry Falwell, in 1971, and was the only full-time teacher in the first year of Liberty’s existence. Today, the University has over 11,400 students on campus with 39,000 in the Distance Learning Program (now Liberty University Online), and he is the Dean of the School of Religion.Dr. Towns has given theological lectures and taught intensive seminars at over 50 theological seminaries in America and abroad. He holds visiting professorship rank in five seminaries. He has written over 2,000 reference and/or popular articles and received six honorary doctoral degrees. Four doctoral dissertations have analyzed his contribution to religious education and evangelism.

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