…I must confess that I’ve never understood those who think that the God of the Old Testament and the God of the New Testament look different. I can’t help but think that such folks haven’t really read all of the Bible, but just parts of it and so have formed this misimpression. When you read the book of Ezekiel, for example, one can only be astonished at a God who would so demean Himself as to literally plead with people to repent so that He need not punish them! We have here the almost unseemly spectacle of the God of the universe begging sinful, rebellious people to turn from their wickedness, lest He be forced to judge them. You’d think He’d just annihilate the wretches! I’ve never ceased to be amazed at God as revealed by Ezekiel.
On the other hand, read a terrifying passage like Revelation 19.11-16 on Christ’s judgement of mankind. Nothing in the Old Testament equals this horrifying image of the great winepress of God’s wrath, crushing sinners like grapes. Jesus himself warned constantly of hell and urged people to find the narrow road that leads to salvation.
The best argument that the God of the Old Testament and the God of the New Testament are one and the same is the fact that Jesus of Nazareth was himself a Jew, devoted to the God of the Old Testament, and did not consider Himself to be revealing anyone else but the God of the Old Testament as His Heavenly Father. To suggest that the God revealed by Jesus is different than the God we read about in the Old Testament is to contradict Jesus’ own belief and testimony. He didn’t think they were different or inconsistent, so why should we? Nor did any of the apostles, including Paul, all of them Jews, think that they were worshipping a God different than the God of their fathers. If they didn’t think so, why should we?
– Dr. William Lane Craig, Question of the Week #41, A Struggling Son