My favorite part of the New Testament is the ‘gotcha’ factor that comes with reading it after reading the Old Testament. You know what I am talking about. That moment in time when something finally clicks and it all makes sense. It is almost like a lightbulb went on in your head. Or its that moment where you think no one is in the room and you say, “ohhhhhhhh I got it.” Yes that is the New Testament. It all starts to click, it all starts to show us so much more of our faith and why we do what we do!
We kept saying the Old Testament will be fulfilled by the New, but what does that mean? What is the New Testament all about anyway? Saint Augustine said, “The New Testament is hidden in the Old, and the Old Testament is revealed in the New.” In essence we can’t fully understand the Old Testament without the New. The New Testament is about the time of Christ and what was promised to us in the Old and what we were being prepared for.
The New Testament is compiled of four parts; The Gospels, the Acts of the Apostles, the Epistles, and Revelations. The layout between the Old Testament and the New are very similar. They both start with laying a foundation, here it is the Gospels telling how Jesus brought the New Law by which we all live by. The Acts of the Apostles is the history aspect of the New Testament and shows the spread of the new kingdom, or the Church. The Epistles come next and they are the ‘wisdom,’ giving mediations and ideas of how to live a Christian Life. Lastly we have the book of Revelations, which we can relate to the prophets, this showing us what judgment brings.
One of the most important parts of the New Testament is the Gospels. The four Gospels are Matthew, Mark, Luke and John. These four Gospels are about Jesus’s life, and these were formed in written in three stages. First the sacred authors needed to hear the Divine Inspiration of God, then they needed to freely accept God’s offer, and they third needed to begin to record the Divine Inspiration. These stages tell us the Church has a foundation and that we are built on “the Word made Flesh.” Jesus came so that we may have life and therefore He divinely inspires us day to day.
“The Word made Flesh.” That verse is so important and so true to the seams of what the New Testament is. In the New Testament when reading through I want to challenge you to dissect the verse you are reading to see how the Old is revealed in the New and how the New was hidden in the Old. It truly is beautiful. But I also challenge you to dissect how some verses may correspond to our physical and spiritual needs. Most of all though when dissecting a verse, you most certainly cannot forget the content that surrounds what we are reading.
Lastly, the New Testament challenges us not just to read the words of all the pages but was originally compiled as a list of books to be read in the liturgy. In the liturgy is where each and every one of us is called to live out each of the words that are being read. It is our chance to truly live out “the Word made flesh.” The New Testament is where we see the Lord break bread with his disciples, flash forward 2000 years and we, his disciples, get to physically break bread with Him every Sunday, and if we so choose, everyday. The New Testament is where we put having faith like a mustard seed to the test and step out of the boat, just like Peter did in the New Testament. This is our call to live it out daily, and let the New and Old Testament be our guidebooks to our lives.