I should read the Old Testament more, but I don’t. I get lost in all the names & places. Then I just give up. I hear this all the time. Maybe this will help.
How are you approaching the OT?
Like a desert; lots of sand & rocks but little life? Stretches of dryness with the occasional oasis? Well yeah, that would be pretty boring.
Like a gymnasium; people & examples of how you should be? Exercises you need to train yourself in? Well yeah, that would be pretty daunting.
So, you can see how these are dead-end approaches.
Try this instead.
On the road to Emmaus (Luke 24: 13-35), Jesus showed us His approach to the OT:
“And beginning with Moses and all the Prophets, He explained to them what was said in all the Scriptures concerning Himself” (verse 27).
And again Jesus said, “You pore over the Scriptures because you presume that by them you possess eternal life. These are the very words that testify about Me.” – John 5:39
“Philip found Nathanael and told him, “We have found the One Moses wrote about in the Law, the One the prophets foretold–Jesus of Nazareth” – John 1:45
The question to ask when reading the OT is: How does this concern, testify about, or reveal Jesus? What can I learn about Jesus in this text? Where is Jesus in this account?
Let me give you an easy example: Noah and the Ark. Using the gymnasium approach only scratches the surface. God asked Noah to do something incredible for which he was ridiculed, but he was obedient and therefore triumphant. Likewise, we should be equally obedient and thereby will be triumphant. Right? Well, that approach totally misses Jesus. The Ark is a type & shadow pointing to perfect fulfillment in Jesus. You can unpack this one easily for yourself, but you get the idea. To not seek Jesus in this account is to miss the whole point!
This way the OT comes alive in a way you never knew it could! The OT conceals what the NT reveals in Christ. You cannot fully appreciate the fulfillment that Jesus offers, if you don’t know how, where, & why it was promised in the first place. The two testaments are sides of the same coin and that coin is the revelation of Our Lord Jesus Christ.
So open the OT because it opens Jesus!