Least Among You – BT2
The New Covenant Way to know God doesn’t show partiality or favoritism
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The “least among you” of the Jews – the children, Gentiles, servants, bond-servants, and slaves – would likely have very little education, or access, money, or time for it, or if they did like some Gentiles did, they would either not have access to the Old Testament (OT) gramma sacred writings nor the desire to acquire gnosis informational-knowledge of God through them. And what about the other “least among them” in every society – the mentally-handicapped and autism spectrum people, the blind, deaf, and mute people? I have had to teach drums to many of these – it’s a real challenge and you have to have a completely-different attitude and way to reach them than through gnosis head-knowledge! If God decided to continue the OT’s way of disseminating the gnosis informational-knowledge of God through gramma sacred writings, collected hundreds of years later by mere men into graphe scripture, through a top-down hierarchy of the “greatest to the least” (a) teachers, wouldn’t God would then be showing partiality and favoritism to “the greatest” over “the least?” Wouldn’t that be contrary to every verse we have seen already about the completely-different-in-kind nature of the chadash/kainos New Covenant Way?
The OT way would also violate many NT verses that argue that the logos gospel message of Jesus and His apostles is kainos “unprecedented, unique and superior,” exactly because it’s based on the charis grace as the “unearned, unmerited, unconditional-loving favor” of God that shows absolutely in fact no partiality (b), and therefore neither should God’s people (c). But aren’t we in most church services? Even by our worship format? <Notes> a) Jonah 3:5, b) Luke 20:21; Acts 10:34; Romans 2:11; Galatians 2:6; Ephesians 6:9, c) Ephesians 6:9; Colossians 3:25; 1 Timothy 5:21; James 2:1, 9.
The OT way favored the educated Jews and the wealth and privilege to afford such education. The scribes, Pharisees, and rabbis were “the greatest among them” even for the Gentiles wanting to “know about God.” It certainly requires “might and power” IQ, mental prowess, reading comprehension, vocabulary and study skills! After straight-A’s in 5 bible colleges, I’m still “a minnow in a shark tank – see Bible Info” Even to this day so many scholars are still debating bible manuscript authenticity, 400,000 textual variants of the NT not to mention the OT, meanings of the multiple ancient languages used, biblical interpretation approaches, and what the actual book/letter list or “canon” actually is. This all clearly favors “the sophia wise and sunesis connect-the-dots understanding ones,” even though there are many NT verses that say God’s New Covenant Ways keep “The Truth” of the kingdom “hidden from the wise and understanding but un-hides it to nepios breast-feeding infants (a)” (b), particularly Christ’s disciples He viewed as such (c). And didn’t Zechariah 4:6 say that that God was going to do away with this “might and power” approach and replace it with the “By My Spirit” approach? Is the modern Church reverted back to the old Jewish ways? <Notes> a) nepios: a milk-feeding infant or little child that requires the gentleness of a nursing mother – 1 Thessalonians 2:7, Hebrews 5:13, or minor not of the age of inheritance, or figuratively of a simple-minded or immature, unlearned, unenlightened person, b) Matthew 11:25; Luke 10:21, c) Matthew 13:10-11; Mark 4:10-11; Luke 8:10.
The fact that the OT has 613 commandments, along with many more added by the Jewish “tradition of the elders,” shows favoritism for only the most intelligent and zealous of Jews. Doing a quick Google search I see websites saying that Christians have 1050 NT commandments that include the 2 greatest OT commandments of “loving God completely and loving your neighbor as yourself” and certainly the OT’s 10 commandments. This is a daunting task to even understand let alone do for educated adults, let alone the uneducated, little children, and the other “least among you!” However, the New Covenant says it has only 1 compound entole officially-decreed, universally-binding commandment consisting of only 2 commandments, defined very clearly and simply in 1 John 3:23 for any “least among you” to easily understand and do: 1) trusting-relying-faith in Christ (a), and 2) unconditionally-love one another just as Christ did us (b). And to make Christ’s “yoke/harness of learning ‘burden’ easy/pleasantly-mild and feather-light to carry [as wind-blown clouds]” (c), God’s unconditional-love is poured into our hearts by the Holy Spirit (d), which we are called to simply remain/live in (e). Again, what God requires of us in the New Covenant absolutely cannot show partiality! Even the uneducated, little children, deaf, blind, and other handicapped people can easily do these 2 parts of 1 commandment with the Holy Spirit within them! <Notes> a) John 8:42, 14:15, 24, 28, 16:27, 21:17, b) John 13:34-35, 15:12, 17; Romans 12:10, 13:8; 2 Corinthians 13:11; Galatians 5:13; Ephesians 4:2; 1 Thessalonians 3:12, 4:9; 2 Thessalonians 1:3; Hebrews 10:24; 1 Peter 1:22, 4:8, 5:14; 1 John 3:11, 4:7, 11-12; 2 John 1:5-6, c) Matthew 11:30; 1 John 5:3, d) Romans 5:5; John 17:26; 1 John 4:12, e) John 15:9-10; 1 John 3:17, 4:12, 16.
As Christian musicians, do we want to continue the OT ways of communicating the knowledge of God to God’s people, doing the same things the Jews did, but hoping for different results? Didn’t Einstein define that as insanity? The bible students of Christ’s day, the scribes and Pharisees, were certainly the “wise and understanding ones” and were viewed as “the greatest” by the people, but Christ constantly pointed out they were the furthest from the kingdom of God! In John 5:38-40, He told them their “diligent, zealous searching (aka study) of the scriptures to take hold of zoe genuine, everlasting life” was ‘all in their heads!’ The gramma sacred writings were simply a “witness/testimony of Christ so that they would come to Him for that zoe genuine-life, but they ongoingly refused!” How sad! They missed the point of the scriptures – for Christ’s arrival to “pleroo fulfill the scriptures” so they would be katargeo “abolished, invalidated, and put away from us” (a)! Yet, I’ve heard so many Christians and churches say the opposite – we still need to read, study, and obey them! Are we also pointing people to gnosis informational-knowledge of God in a bible? Or do we point them to a genuine, experiential, relational epignosis knowledge of Christ who has already come? <Notes> a) Matthew 5:17 pleroo: fill to fullness, capacity, or completeness. What is thus ‘filled’ is complete, finished, or ended. Ephesians 2:14-15 Christ katargeo “abolished the Law of commandments expressed in ordinances”: rendered inoperative by working/bringing them down to the point of being idle, inert, inoperative, ceased, abolished, invalid, abrogated, and put out from us.
As Christian musicians, are we “keeping people captive” in the “before trusting-relying-faith came” instead of the “until the coming of trusting-relying-faith would be un-hidden” (a)? Are we requiring people to have the same “might and power” the Jews needed to understand or “un-hide” the meaning of their ancient book? Are we showing the same partiality and favoritism to such “wisdom and understanding?” Are we also leaving “the least among us” at the bottom of a top-down hierarchy of “knowing God” because we are repeating the old faulty system and methods? Are we also relying on a top-down hierarchy of teachers to reach the bottom, even though God disposed of this method? Or will we agree with the New Covenant prophecies (b) and Paul that there is a completely-different-in-kind New Way of “learning Christ” (c)? <Notes> a) Galatians 3:23; Matthew 11:12-15; Luke 16:16; Acts 2:17-19, b) Jeremiah 31:31-34 as cited by Hebrews 8:8-13, 10:16-17, and Romans 11:27 but also alluded to in Luke 22:20, 1 Corinthians 11:25, and Hebrews 9:15, 12:24, b) Ephesians 4:20.