Struggling with how the depiction of God in the Old Testament jives with Jesus in the New Testament?
Greg Boyd, pastor of Woodland Hills Church, has some awesome sermons on this topic.
In the first sermon, God’s Shadow Activity, he shows how the Law was simply a shadowy depiction of God’s ultimate aim–the cross.
In the second sermon, Shadow of the Cross, he talks about how the barbaric, violent, nationalistic passages in the Old Testament are examples of God taking accountability for our sinful actions, just as he ultimately did through Jesus on the cross.
Give ’em a listen. Good stuff.
There are lots of theories to explain why the men listed in Genesis lived so long, from the “clean environment = longevity” theory, to the “ages = clan/dynasties” theory, to “somebody added a zero/scribal error” theory. My favorite is the theory is that the ages were “sacred numbers” or symbolic somehow. The ancient Mesopotamian numbering system was based around the number 60 (most likely due to how they calculated astrological situations), which meant their highest god was assigned the ideal number, 60. Of secondary importance was the number 10, which was the number assigned to mankind (5 fingers on each hand meant a whole man = “10”). So, taking these two basic concepts, when we are told Noah was 600 when the flood came, and that he was “righteous” (or right with God) we can see that he was “10 X 60” or, 600. There’s an interesting article on this point of view here.