Thursday, November 3, 2016

The Law of Moses and Christianity

There are two extremes on the issue of keeping the Law of Moses in the Church.  There is the "God never changes" so keeping the Law is just as Important as ever crowd.  Some may even argue it's stricter now.  And then there is the full on it is BAD for Christians to keep the Law, even the Holy Days, camp.

The latter is absurd, to suggest it's bad to follow Jesus example by keeping the Feast of Tabernacles.  The only way it would ever become bad is if you try to force it on others.

The extremists of the former camp come in varieties.  I have said already about all I care to regarding those who want to reject Paul as a false Prophet.  Or anyone else who will deny Faith Alone and Eternal Security.

To those like Rob Skiba, who I greatly respect.  The key issue I want to ask is, did Paul mean what he said when he said "all things are lawful to be, but not all things are beneficial" in Corinthians?  All the issues you can point out about the health benefits of not eating Pork are relevant to the beneficial part of that statement, but they do not undermine the lawful part.

I believe in Eternal Security.  I believe there are different judgments for Believers and Unbelievers.  I believe only Believers will receive rewards and only Unbelievers will receive punishments.  But some Believers will get no rewards as the Bema account in Corinthians shows.  There are five different Crowns we can win, I don't want to go in depth on them here.  But the point here is that one is a reward for not sinning, maybe one or two others are also relevant to the law.  But Martyrs have a guaranteed crown no matter how they lived their Christian life up to that point.

One of the arguments for suggesting the Law is now stricter for Christians is to say that because now all Believers are "Kings and Priests" that laws unique to the Priests and Kings in the Torah now apply to all Believers.

Leaving aside the issue that the Priesthood in question here is not the Aaronic one, but of Melchizedek (it may surprise you to learn that even Rabbis have taught that the Priesthood of Melchizedek in a sense includes all believers).  What the New Testament actually teaches is that we all have the opportunity to be Kings and Priests.

Apostates, as I have argued before, lose their citizenship in the Kingdom (but not their Salvation).  So they certainly won't become Kings of it.

I would hesitate to argue you are a King by winning any Crown, since there are two different Greek words for Crown used in the NT.  But I would advise that if you want to be a King in the Kingdom then it would help to follow the instructions God gave the King (which Solomon failed to follow) in Deuteronomy.  But that does not make it a Sin to not follow those instructions.

My point is keeping the Law is good, as long as you're not doing it thinking it contributes to your Salvation.  My objection to much of what I hear from the Torah observing community lies only in my opposition to making other Christians feel obligated to do anything.

Rob Skiba complains about strawmen he's accused of.  But he's engaging in one when he says things like "I'm just saying it's a good idea to obey God".  I believe we should obey God, but I believe God's commands are different for each of us, we are to be lead by The Holy Spirit.  When Jesus said "Those who love Me obey My commandments" in John it's right before he talks abut sending the Comforter, that is not a coincidence.

I feel the most important command God has given me personally is to never tell other people what to do, and to politely and respectfully as I can oppose those who do tell others what to do.  That is why I spend so much time on the Homosexuality issue even though I'm mostly Straight myself, and why regardless of economic disagreements I tend to vote Libertarian.  But on the Homosexuality issue  I show it's not condemned in the Torah either, practicing Homosexuals can keep perfectly Kosher.

And yes I know Rob insists he's not telling anyone what to do.  But so much of the what he says in context easily comes off that way, intentionally or not.

I know it is popular now to suggest every use of the word Sin should be defined by 1 John 3:4 "Whosoever committeth sin transgresseth also the law: for sin is the transgression of the law."  But I say perhaps the word "Law" should be defined by Galatians 5:14 "For all the law is fulfilled in one word, even in this; Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself.".  Which I have a second witness for in how Jesus defined the two greatest commandments.  As well as James 2:8.

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