04 December 2012

The Bible, The Law, and Faith.

ArticPatriot asked this question, A legalistic reading of the law?  A follow on comment told me to stick to tactics, that religion was over my head.  Sometimes you have to go full retard to make a point.  I thought I'd already gone full retard by showing scripture that supports what we consider immorality in modern society.  No, someone wants to have the conversation about Godly morality in accordance with the law, so we are going to go the full measure. Cue "Black Eyed Peas" Let's get retarded in here.

In the New Testament, we find the phrase, "in spirit and in truth" used frequently in the KJV.  We also see Jesus telling the Pharisees that there were as "whited tombs, clean on the outside but full of unclean death on the inside" (I paraphrase to get the point across).  It is important to know what the law, the Pharisees, and "in spirit and in truth" mean.

To understand, we must first understand Tanakh, Torah, and Talmud.  We must first understand the Pharisees and their doctrinal position.

The Torah is what we Christians generally refer to as "The Books of Moses" or Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers and Deuteronomy.  

The Tanakh is what we refer to as the "Old Testament" and when something seems contradictory to "Torah" in the minor prophets and histories, then "Torah" wins out.

The Talmud is the collection of discussions about the Torah and Tanakh.  Originally the Talmud was a verbal thing, but due to the various diaspora events suffered by the Jewish people, the Talmud was recorded, and bit by bit, line by line, the law was built.

This is the environment in which Christ came to walk with his people.  The Pharisees had taken God's laws, and placed additional rules before them just to be safe.  The verse, "don't boil a kid in its mother's milk" gradually became, "never serve meat and dairy in the same meal." 

The examples of this can go on and on, but this is what Jesus was referring to when he said that the Pharisees put grievous burdens on men, while not being burdened themselves.

So what is the purpose of the Law?  The purpose of the law is to condemn, to allow Satan, the accuser, to point to the law and say, "See here! this is the violation, and the just punishment is death!"

And that is why our Lord and Savior had to die, to fulfill the law. 

And once the law was fulfilled, what purpose does the Law have in someone bought and redeemed by Christ's shed blood?  We see Peter and Paul no longer keeping the dietary restrictions, yet we see Paul ensuring Timothy was circumcised?  Especially in the light that we read that the gentile believers have no need to be circumcised.  But let us take a look at what Jesus says about the Law and the Lawyers.

Matthew 23:
23 Then spake Jesus to the multitude, and to his disciples,
Saying The scribes and the Pharisees sit in Moses' seat:
All therefore whatsoever they bid you observe, that observe and do; but do not ye after their works: for they say, and do not.
For they bind heavy burdens and grievous to be borne, and lay them on men's shoulders; but they themselves will not move them with one of their fingers.
But all their works they do for to be seen of men: they make broad their phylacteries, and enlarge the borders of their garments,
And love the uppermost rooms at feasts, and the chief seats in the synagogues,
And greetings in the markets, and to be called of men, Rabbi, Rabbi.
But be not ye called Rabbi: for one is your Master, even Christ; and all ye are brethren.
And call no man your father upon the earth: for one is your Father, which is in heaven.
10 Neither be ye called masters: for one is your Master, even Christ.
11 But he that is greatest among you shall be your servant.
12 And whosoever shall exalt himself shall be abased; and he that shall humble himself shall be exalted.
13 But woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye shut up the kingdom of heaven against men: for ye neither go in yourselves, neither suffer ye them that are entering to go in.
14 Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye devour widows' houses, and for a pretence make long prayer: therefore ye shall receive the greater damnation.
15 Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye compass sea and land to make one proselyte, and when he is made, ye make him twofold more the child of hell than yourselves.

In the same Sermon Jesus taught his followers to obey the Pharisees, who taught the Law, but he taught that the becoming a Pharisee would make you a child of hell.  How can this be?  The Law does not save.  The Law condemns.  The Law is there to point to our imperfections and desperate need for a Savior.  The Law is uncompromising because we need Mercy from one who wrote the Law.

Legalism is death and damnation.  The righteousness of the law is nothing.  A living relationship with God is what is required for life.  The Bible is clear on this point.

John Chapter 4:
22 Ye worship ye know not what: we know what we worship: for salvation is of the Jews. 23 But the hour cometh, and now is, when the true worshippers shall worship the Father in spirit and in truth: for the Father seeketh such to worship him. 24 God is a Spirit: and they that worship him must worship him in spirit and in truth.

Notice that the law is not mentioned.

Galatians chapter 5.
22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, 23 Meekness, temperance: against such there is no law.

Paul was making the point that the law is always against something, prohibiting something.  The law is silent on the fruits of the spirit, because it has no power to stop anyone from a relationship with God through Christ.

James chapter 5
Be ye also patient; stablish your hearts: for the coming of the Lord draweth nigh. Grudge not one against another, brethren, lest ye be condemned: behold, the judge standeth before the door. 10 Take, my brethren, the prophets, who have spoken in the name of the Lord, for an example of suffering affliction, and of patience.

 John chapter 7

23 If a man on the sabbath day receive circumcision, that the law of Moses should not be broken; are ye angry at me, because I have made a man every whit whole on the sabbath day? 24 Judge not according to the appearance, but judge righteous judgment.

This is why I don't kill witches or stone adulterers.  Because Jesus didn't.  Jesus helped the possessed, offered forgiveness to the adulterers.  The law is harsh, mercy is outside the scope of the law.

 If you have the opportunity to save a sinners life, but don't do that because they are a sinner, is that righteous judgement?  If you have the opportunity to stand up for every persons right to find God as individuals, and you don't, is that righteous judgement?  If you want to sit in Moses' seat and argue the law, by all means that is your choice, but know that focusing on the Law is focusing on the trivial. 

Jesus is the law of life.  He is the law of mercy, and kindness, and doing good to those that do not deserve it.  And when we say that "I will not fight for your liberty, you immoral person" we are blaspheming against the Holy Spirit.  In essence that is passing judgement on another soul condemning them to death instead of allowing them more time to get to know God before the grave robs the of any more chances.

Where there is life there is hope, and our actions speak so much louder than our words.  If we are a cold, judgmental people, our faith is clearly dead.  If we accept people with their faults, show kindness, mercy, forgiveness, and are a living example of an imperfect person seeking perfection, that is faith proven by works.


Anonymous said...

"For with what judgement ye judge, ye shall be judged: and with what measure ye mete, it shall be measured to you again." - Matt. 7:2

"Then his lord, after that he had called him, said unto him, O thou wicked servant, I forgave thee all that debt, because thou desiredest me:
Shouldest not thou also have had compassion on thy fellowservant, even as I had pity on thee?
And his lord was wroth, and delivered him to the tormentors, till he should pay all that was due unto him.
So likewise shall my heavenly Father do also unto you, if ye from your hearts forgive not every one his brother their trespasses." - Matt. 18:32-35

For the Sunday school averse/more culturally minded, picture Loki flipslammed by the Hulk towards the end of "The Avengers".

The concept of Christ, not subtly hinting, nor allegorizing, but telling people point blank, outright, loud and clear that God will hand the unforgiving over to be tormented should be enough to set off all the warning lights on one's personal dashboard to indicate "Don't be THAT guy."

I guess some folks are slow learners...

Best Regards,

Anonymous said...

Can you please go back to the FC7 stories?

You have a great blog. I'd hate to have to skip over it like I do the church channels.

Anonymous said...

Well said. Nothing I could add except total agreement.

Screw the critics. Its your blog, say what you wish. If some find that unacceptable, they can delete you from their shortcut list.


Anonymous said...

Oh, yeah Aesop nails it, too.


Toaster 802 said...

But before faith came, we were kept under the law, shut up unto the faith which should afterwards be revealed.

Wherefore the law was our schoolmaster to bring us unto Christ, that we might be justified by faith.

But after that faith is come, we are no longer under a schoolmaster.

For ye are all the children of God by faith in Christ Jesus.

Galatians 3:23-26

The law is an ass.

AM said...

anon, feel free to ignore religion. however it is important to talk about this now so fc7 doesnt end up being a biggoted group of unfriendly cranks who can not win the hearts and minds necessary to win an insurgency. people matter, so much more than tactics or logistics. you need people who believe in your cause enough to fight with you, support you, or ignore you.

Anonymous said...

This is great! We can have a revolution to restore a constitutional republic, and then we get a reformation, counter-reformation, inquisition, burning of heretics and a replay of the Thirty Years War with IEDs and automatic weapons. I love religion.

Anonymous said...

AM, I'm not trying to be a crank in my comment above. I do enjoy your writings on current events, culture, and your reality based fiction.

When I first found your site during deer season a few weeks ago, I forgot to bring my book to deer camp, and was eagerly reading backwards through your site one FC7 short story after another.

I've read many of the books in this genre, including the Rawles Patriots series, and Molon Labe by Royce. All great books, and hard to put down. Despite the heavy dose of religion included.

Don't get me wrong. I'm not antagonistic against religion and/or faith.

It's just that I've been exposed to some pretty negative aspects of organized Mega religion growing up. Nothing to do with priests offering me a Coke and a Snickers bar in exchange for their particular favors or anything like that.

Religion and faith are just more of a personal matter for me now, and when people in real life, or characters in fiction try to force their particular faith or dogma down my throat, it takes away from the experience, it doesn't enhance it.

I just get turned off on the inevitable arguments over denominations, creeds, dogma, etc. etc.

I'm just hoping your site doesn't devolve into a religious shouting match. Atheists and believers both have their cranks. They thrive fighting against each others, and with each other.

Please don't open up that can of worms here.

I believe a person can be moral whether you are a believer, unbeliever or ambivalent.

It's your site, and I'm certainly not trying to tell you how to run it.

All I can tell you is what brought me here, and why I stay, and that I am anxious to check for your latests posts each day.

I think you have a great thing going here, and hope you don't lose focus on your fiction talent and real world technical skill writing.

Hoping you become the next Vince Flynn, à la Term Limits type action, with a heavy dose of "how to" out of the box thinking for our times.

Just my two cents. Carry on.

Anonymous said...

Fascinating. Thank you for addressing some of the bigotry that often gets caught up in the liberty/survival movement.

AM, what denomination would you identify as?

AM said...

sinner, saved variety

Anonymous said...

"Render unto Cesar what is Cesar's and unto the Lord what is the Lord's"

If my life is forfeit to protect and allow for the continuing of the life of a sinner, bigot, harlot, unbeliever or otherwise to protect the sheep from the wolves then so be it. This is the task the Lord has put before me. All I ask and pray for is that the Lord Jesus forgive me of my sins and allow those that do not know or believe the opportunity to understand and have the realization of what true Love actually means.

On the front

Anonymous said...

I totally agree with you. I'm not super religious myself, but am spiritual. Any person who would turn their back on another human being because they are gay, Muslim, whatever, is plainly a petty tyrant.

Advocating freedom means advocating everyone's freedom, including things you may not condone yourself. I will protect members of my community, whether they be Muslim, Jewish, LGBT, Hindu, whatever. They are all my brother or sister. Being an advocate for freedom, and from my understanding of Christianity, is to be first and foremost a humanist.

We are all together in this life, even those enemies that would kill us or innocents. Our job is to ensure that freedom and humanity wins out, and to protect the innocent and helpless. Unconditional love should be the ultimate end-state. Otherwise, what's the point?


Stone Cutter said...

All one has to do, is actually read scripture. See who it was Yeshua hung out with, and who He truly condemned.

Tables have to be overturned.


AM said...

If given no other information I would turn my back on a muslim, I have no desire to aid someone who is fighting to oppress me.

I have no religious compunction to defend those who embrace a spirit of anti-Christ, of which Islam qualifies.

And if you believe muslims aren't working to take away your freedom of religion, wake up and smell reality.

Anonymous said...

They're free to bow down and pray 7 times a day all they want.

The minute they cross the line and start collecting funds for or plotting conspiracies for violent actions, they've left religion, and entered firmly the grounds of legitimate military target.

At that point, the appropriate doctrine switches from forgiveness, to an aptly named Hellfire missile up their ass.

When it's advocated by their religious leaders, that mosque should be declared a public nuisance and levelled, and the assets seized to feed orphans.

Personal conduct can be personally forgiven. Publicly advocating violence against society generally qualifies as sedition, and should result in a suitable application of high explosives.

I have no answer why people or governments are so easily confused on either issue. Individuals keep advocating nuclear weapons for individual beliefs, and governments keep turning the other cheek to bands of armed cutthroats simply because they hide behind some witch doctor's skirts.

It's like they put the Extra Retarded Flavor in their morning coffee or something.


RegT said...

For the cheap seats out there, who might have missed it, Islam is not a religion. It is a death cult that will tolerate no other belief, no other culture, and mutilates, abuses, and kills even its own flesh and blood. There is no virtue - NO virtue - in being tolerant of Islam. Orthodox Islam is a scourge upon civilization and needs to be locked away or eradicated.

On the law: when I went through the academy with the San Diego Police Department, we were taught to support the _spirit_ of the law, not the _letter_ of the law. Our intent was to protect the citizens of our city, to help keep them safe, not to harass or punish them using the law.

So it should be with any law written by man - even if it law that is said to have been handed down from G-d, and then written. Man's law will never do what it might have been intended to do. It is up to us to use discretion in our dealings with each other, along with compassion and concern for others.

Except for those who cling to Islam. Those who would harm innocents, women and children, and especially those I care for will only receive my wrath.