For follow-up discussion and general commentary on the topic. Comments are sorted chronologically.
Be careful when you start talking about the law. Do not think of the 10 commandments and the law of Moses as being the same law that was fulfilled and is no longer binding. Many people say that we don’t have to keep the Sabbath because that was part of the law that was done away with when Jesus died on the cross. Those same people will tell you that the other 9 comments are still binding so you shouldn’t kill, lie, commit adultery, etc.
The sacrificial system was done away with when Jesus died for our sins. The 10 commandments was NOT done away with when Jesus died for our sins.
Who can say with total peace in their heart that it is now ok to kill because when God said “Thou shall not kill” that should have only been followed in the old testament. Who can say that it is ok for us to have other gods before God because when He said “You shall have no other gods before Me” that was just an old testament law that is no longer binding now that Jesus died for our sins? Do you think that it is ok to “bear false witness against your neighbor”, or commit adultery, or steal?
The law. Still loved by many as a list of do's and don'ts to earn entry into heaven. Right or wrong, I prefer to stay in the actual teachings of Jesus and try to live as he lived.
So many rules of the Old Testament, including sacrifices, were fulfilled by Christ. Also, to those who go beyond the ten commandments for direction, one must be careful not to pick and choose which to obey and which to ignore, such as rules of cloth, covering the head in church,etc. Christ gave us so much in how to love each other and spread His word. God bless us all.
Daryl, Being not under the Ten Commandments doesn't make murder okay. "Shall we sin that grace may abound? May it never be!"
Larry, Thanks for quoting Romans. I love that book. What is sin? To start with, read Romans 7:7. The whole book of Romans is well worth the time to study in detail. Isn't it interesting what law he quotes in that verse? ;)
Murder is sin, not because the Ten Commandments says so but because it has always been wrong. The Ten Commandments were part of God's covenant with Israel. Just because Gentiles are not under the law does not give us permission to commit murder.
You say murder is "wrong" and I agree it's wrong. Would it be a "sin" to kill someone? Is it ok to have other gods before God? (Exodus 20:3) Is it ok to make graven images and bow down to them? (Exodus 20:4-6) Is it ok to take the Lords name in vain? (Exodus 20:7) Is it ok dishonour your father and mother? (Exodus 20:12) Is it ok to commit adultery? (Exodus 20:14) Is it ok to steal? (Exodus 20:15) Is it ok to lie? (Exodus 20:16) Is it ok to covet what other people have? (Exodus 20:17)
I skipped the Sabbath (Exodus 20:8-11) because I already know that most of the Christians in the word think it's ok to not keep the Sabbath, and skipped murder (Exodus 20:13) since we already covered that one.
If anyone out there thinks that it is not ok to all the ones that I mentioned above, why? If you say that we don't have to obey God's Law, the one that he wrote with his own finger in stone instead of having a man write it for him, what makes you think that it would be wrong to do all those other things?
BTW: If you quote Matthew 22:37 and Matthew 22:39, keep in mind the first one is just a summary of the first four of the 10 commandments and the second one is a summary of the last six of the 10 commandments, which would be like saying it's wrong because God told us not to do those things in the 10 commandments.
The serious moral issues are dealt with in various forms in the NT scriptures. Some (murder, for example) are cited before the Law; Genesis 9:6. The confusion happens because there are universal moral elements, like murder, in the Ten Commandments. Therefore, because murder is obviously wrong and is cited in the T.C's, it is felt that Sabbath keeping is just as wrong as murder is. I have often, not necessarily here, that murder is wrong, but not because it's in the T.C's.
I never said "You don't have to obey the commands." I said "We're not under the law." I am not antinomian.
Hebrews 4 treats the Sabbath as a type. Its emphasis is upon "rest" (creation rest, promise land rest) and not upon the Sabbath. Romans 14:5 does away with "day keeping" along with dietary I observance.
In your mind, what is the difference between "You don't have to obey the commandments" and "We're not under the law"?
Just to be clear, I believe that everyone from Adam till the last man/woman on earth is saved by grace, and NOTjust by obeying God's law. Nobody earns their way to heaven. There is nothing we can do to earn our way to heaven. It is only by accepting the gift of God in the fact that Jesus died for our sins in our place that anyone can go to heaven. I have believed that for the last 40 years or so that I've been old enough to understand the plan of salvation. There is no need to try to convince me of that.
It seems to me that Mark 7:8-13 holds true in our day even though Jesus Himself said that in the new testament. Allowing men to change the day of worship from the 7th day of the week to the 1st day of the week happened about 300 years after all the authors of the new testament, so clearly that is not what the authors of the new testament was talking about. They, and all their follower all kept the Sabbath on the 7th day of the week. I'm not trying to get off topic here, it's just that I've heard all my life the same thing from everyone that I've talked to about the Sabbath when they try to rationalize why they follow the tradition of man (Sunday) instead of keeping God's Sabbath.
Can anyone honestly tell me that if it wasn't for the tradition of man in keeping Sunday, anyone would have a problem with the 10 commandments?
The way I see it is that the crucifixion took place on a Friday, the next day the Saturday they rested so they didn't go to the tomb; they went there the following day Sunday to find that Jesus had risen. Therefore it would make sense to me that Saturday is the last day of the week and Sunday is the first, a day of new beginning, a resurrection. Which is the most important to celebrate?
Darryl, I think you have me confused with Sunday-Sabbath keepers. Anyway, there's a great deal of difference, in my mind between the two expressions.The NT scriptures and the HS both bid me to refrain from murder. Insofar as written instruction, I follow the new covenant as interpreted mainly by the NT epistles.
I follow Romans 14:5...et al and Col. 1:16. Both of them instruct me that the new covenant doesn't have holy days. (Personally, I don't believe Sunday worship first occurred in 300 AD or so. But even if I did, it wouldn't make any difference since I don't believe in holy day/sabbath observance of any sort.
First, the Bible never said that Jesus died on Friday. It says He died on the "preparation" day before the Sabbath, and John 19:31 tells us that it was a "High Sabbath". For those who don't know what a High Sabbath, here's a link to Wikipedia http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/High_Sabbaths), but that is way off topic, so that discussion should take place elsewhere. Personally, I do what Jesus asked us to to in Luke 22:19.
I'm sorry if I've made any assumptions about you. I've been responding to you since you are one of very few people that has written anything after I wrote something 4 days ago. I am thankful that you have shared your thoughts and I look forward to reading what you write every time I get an Email telling me that you have responded. In addition to what you write, I'm still hoping for more people to add their thoughts on why so many people insist that something that was so important to God in the old testament is no longer important to God and is something that we can just ignore.
I know that true Christians love God, so why not do what Jesus asked us to do in John 14:15 if we really do love Him? Do NOT twist I what just wrote and accuse me of saying that if you don't keep the Sabbath that don't love Him. I'm saying that true Christians who go to church on Sunday DO love Him, I'm just saying why not do what He asked us to do?
God doesn't change, so why do so many people think that He changed what He wants us to do?
Sorry if I'm not answering the way you have asked me, but I don't believe "my commandments" refers to the Ten Commandments.
We are no longer under the penalty of the Law, because Christ paid the penalty for our breaking it. Interestingly enough though, Christ's death upheld the law as good and just. However, despite that the law was good, it could not make anyone perfect. It could only show us our own sin, our utter failure to be able to be 100% law abiding citizens.
As Christ fulfilled the law and paid it's penalty, we are no longer 'under the law'. The law was like a schoolmaster or guardian, but now we live by faith. Gal 3 goes into this in detail:
"So the law was our guardian until Christ came that we might be justified by faith. Now that this faith has come, we are no longer under a guardian". Gal 3:24-25.
Instead of being under the law, we now walk by the spirit (Gal 5:16).
Because we are putting on the mind of Christ, we pursue righteousness. We do not avoid murder because of the law, which even a non-believer might do, but because we know that to take an innocent life is opposed to the character of God.
Does someone feel that resting on the Sabbath is honoring to God? Let him rest on the Sabbath. Does someone feel that the Sabbath is best honored and remembered by rest from dead works? Let him seek virtue and devoutness and confess sin. There is great freedom as we live out our faith.
[That said, making one's own new law [such as 'rest on Sunday'] should be avoided. God's Law, while it could make no one perfect, at least pointed to Christ. Man's added rules cannot.
I have no problem saying that I can't explain God, but in my mind, there is God the father, Jesus and the Holy Spirit, and all three are God. I can't image that God the father and Jesus would disagree with each other, so I can't see why Jesus would have different commandments than God the father. For that matter, which one gave the 10 commandments to Moses?
You say that we aren't under the law, does that include Jesus' commandments? Are we under His commandments? Does "under the law" mean we don't have to obey them, they are optional? Who are the 10 commandments for now?
What is the difference between the 10 commandments and Jesus' commandments?
Daryl, you summed it up when you said,
"I know that true Christians love God, so why not do what Jesus asked us to do in John 14:15 if we really do love Him?"
We do not follow the Law as any requirement for salvation, but there are countless things the Holy Spirit can point us to in the Law and scripture as beneficial for teaching, righteousness, virtue, etc.
As such, if you know something is "good", by all means follow it and keep it. The difference in following what the Holy Spirit points out as good, or following a command of Jesus because you love Him, is very different than following the Law because one 'must'. /
For example, imagine a tiny village in the middle of nowhere, that only has a portion of scripture. They know Christ died for their sins, but have never heard of the Sabbath.
Would God look down on them? No. If they were under the law they would be 'lawbreakers' - but instead they have freedom in Christ.
For those that have access to the whole of scripture, is it binding to not work in any fashion on the Sabbath? By no means (Rom 14:5, Col 2:16-19). Likewise, if one wishes to rest on the Sabbath as a commemoration of God's creation and holiness, he is welcome to do so, its a blessing God gave us.
"These are a shadow of the things that were to come; the reality, however, is found in Christ". Col 2:16
The Sabbath was a type, both of our deliverance from bondage to sin (rest from dead works) and our eternal rest in God once Christ returns. (Heb 4:1-13)
Darryl, The new covenant is different from the old covenant. See Jeremiah 31:31ff. "Not like" the old covenant, according to verse 32. God, whether as the Son or as the Father, has the privilege of deciding if the new covenant supplants the old. Since the NT scriptures are new revelation, Hebrews 8:13 tells us that as he (the writer of Hebrews) was writing, the old covenant was "passing away."
Regarding Jesus' commandments, He was introducing new things, even while the Law was technically in force during His earthly existence. He introduced deeper meanings, never revealed anywhere in the old, at least not overtly. Jesus' Sermon on the Mount suggests new meanings, whether wholly new commandments or interpretations, I cannot say.
But to answer your question, "the law was given through Moses, but grace and truth...." (John 1:17). So Jesus did not "give the law." No.
Darryl, In saying the old covenant passed away, I'm saying that its passing was intended even as it was being given. So, Jesus was in no way disagreeing with the Father as if the Father intended permanence of the law, but as if Jesus didn't. The law was never meant to be permanent. Jeremiah 31 tells us that.
It means that before our Lord Jesus gave His life on the cross, no believer could fulfill the law in their own strength. Thereafter, every person who acknowledged Christ as Saviour, and by the power of the Holy Spirit dwelling in them, in their new heart of flesh (The Lord now having removed the heart of stone), every born again (new creation), has the desire and capacity not to sin, provided we deny our fleshly desires, identify with Jesus suffering and death (pick up our cross), that we may experience resurrection life, through every situation we face, daily.
John 14 is a passage some think applies to the ten commandments, but I do not believe that is the case.
In John 14:23 the Greek word sometimes translated “commandment” is the word “logos,” which means “something said,” “message,” “statement” or just “word.” Thus various English versions translate it accordingly.
In John 14:24 Jesus uses the same Greek word (this time the plural form) a second time.
I believe the Lord Jesus was speaking of the teachings he had given his followers. It is his “words,” “message” or “instructions” he refers to, and those words do indeed include some commands. I believe the context supports this understanding, for the very next verse continues, “All this I have spoken to you.”
The word used in John 14:15 is “entole,” which does mean “command.” It is used of an order from an authority. But I don’t think it refers here to the TC, for Jesus uses the same word in John 13:34 saying, “A new command I give you: Love one another.” That is not one of the TC, but is something Jesus told his followers to do. That’s how he uses it, I believe, in John 14:15.
So I think that in both passages Jesus refers of the things he has been teaching his followers over the time they have been together. Of course, these words in no way contradict the Father, for Jesus speaks only words the Father gives (John 14:10, 24).