Logos Word of God – BT8
The Law ‘portion of’ scripture sure was NOT “profitable for teaching” in the Church
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We’ve already seen that much of the OT scripture simply wasn’t used to convert Christians, especially because it only consists of shadows, copies, corresponding types, and prefigures of things to come, but the genuine ‘body or substance’ that casts the ‘shadow’ backwards in time through the OT scripture is Christ and His gospel logos message of a completely-different-in-kind New Covenant by the promised Holy Spirit (a). If we have the living person of Christ by the Holy Spirit, why do we need “shadows, copies, types, and figures” of scripture about Him? <Notes> a) Romans 5:14; Galatians 4:25; Colossians 2:17, Hebrews 8:5, 9:23-24, 10:1; 1 Peter 3:21.
But NOW we’ll see even stronger arguments for not including the Law ‘portion of’ scripture, not just the 5 books of Moses but 97.4% of the OT that is based on it – see Logos Word of God – BT7 and Logos Word of God – BT5a We have to remember “The Scripture imprisoned everything under sin, so that the promise by trusting-relying-faith in Jesus Christ might be given to those who have trusting-relying-faith (a). <Notes> a) Galatians 3:22.
The NT says so many extremely negative things about the “Law of commandments” that it’s impossible for Paul to be telling Timothy in 2 Timothy 3:16 in the previous BLOG to include it in the “pas ‘whole/entirety of’ scripture” so that it “is profitable for teaching . . .” giving just one of many reasons to prefer a ‘portion of’ translation of pas, where the ‘portion of’ is the prophetic or “God-breathed-kind’ that “is powerfully-enabling to make you wise unto salvation by trusting-relaying-faith in Christ Jesus.”
The Greek word nomos literally means “division into piles, as with grain or food.” This also the basis of the various words for “judgment,” meaning to “point the finger or shoot an arrow at” one of those ‘piles’ of people and declare judicially “guilty” or “not guilty.” And yet Christians are not to judge, especially by outward appearance (a). Jesus criticized the Law-teachers for being very judgmental (b). “They tied up heavy burdens [of the Law,] hard to bear, and lay them on people’s shoulders, but they themselves are not willing to move them with their finger” (c). <Notes> a) Matthew 7:1; Luke 6:37; 1 Corinthians 4:3, b) John 7:24; 8:15, c) Matthew 23:4; Luke 11:46.
In application, nomos generally means “principles or ways” just as the Hebrew word torah it translates generally means “instruction of principles or ways,” and this is the way it is sometimes used in the NT. For example, Paul says: “So I find it to be ‘a law’ that when I want to do right, evil lies close at hand. For I delight in the ‘Law of God,’ in my mind/heart/inner being, I see in my members ‘another law’ waging war against the ‘Law of/belonging-to my mind’ and making me captive to the ‘law of/belonging-to sin’ that dwells in my members” (a), but the context defines the ‘Law of my mind/inner being” to be the ‘Law of God.” Now the tricky part is that the ‘law of sin in my members’ turns out to be directly linked to the “Law of God,” so that it ultimately becomes ‘the Law of sin and death’ (b). The Law is a “ministry of death, carved in letters on stone . . . the ministry of condemnation” (c). <Notes> a) Romans 7:21-3, b) Romans 8:2, c) 2 Corinthians 3:3, 7, 9.
Paul concludes this rant about the effects of the “Law of God” by saying “For ‘the Law of the Spirit’ of zoe genuine-life has set you free in Christ Jesus from the law of sin and death” (a). Yes, Paul is saying that the good, holy, righteous, and Spirit-kind-of (b) Mosaic Law that promises zoe genuine-life (c) ends up being a “Law of sin and death.” How? It’s not that the Law is defined as sin or is sinful (d). The problem is that the Law not only exposes or defines what sin is (e) and brings light in to show us that sin is actually quite sinful (f), but Sin personified seizes the opportunity of the Law’s commandments to deceive us and produce all kinds of sin in us, for apart from the Law sin is lifeless. Growing up, as soon as we become aware of the Law in our conscience (g), sin becomes alive in us and we are immediately sentenced to death, even though it promised zoe genuine-life. Therefore, indirectly the Law brings death to us. The Law doesn’t produce death in us, but the Sin it made alive does (h)! Still the fact is that the “good, holy, and righteous Law” has effectively become “death to me” indirectly because of “Sin dia through-the-realizing-channel-of the Law is ongoingly working death inside me, which shows not only that Sin is defined as sin by the ‘good, righteous, and holy Law’ but that Sin might kata come-down-upon-us-as (or uses as an intensifier) exceedingly sinful (beyond measure) (i), because it certainly has produces all kinds of sin in us that the Law defined (j). <Notes> a) Romans 8:2, b) Acts 7:53 delivered by angels, c) Romans 7:10, 12, 14, 16, d) Romans 7:7, e) Roman 7:7, f) Roman 7:13, g) thus the “age of accountability”, h) Romans 7:8-11, i) Romans 7:13, j) Romans 7:8.
That’s why Paul can still conclude in Romans 8:2 that it is a “Law of sin and death” that we need to be set free from by the “the nomos Law of the Spirit of zoe genuine-life,” exactly because “the sting of death is sin but the power of sin is the Law” (a). Our deliverance comes from Jesus Christ our Lord (b). “There is therefore NOW absolutely in fact no condemnation for those who are IN Christ Jesus. For God has done what the Law, weakened by the flesh, absolutely in fact could not do. By sending His own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh and for sin, He condemned sin in the flesh (c) . . . You, however, are not ‘IN the flesh’ but “IN the Spirit,’ if in fact the Spirit of God dwells IN you. Anyone who does not have the Spirit of Christ does not belong to Him. But if Christ is IN you, although the body/flesh is dead because of sin, the Spirit is zoe genuine-life because of righteousness (c). If the Spirit of Him who raised Jesus from the dead dwells IN you, he who raised Christ Jesus from the dead will also give zoe genuine-life to your mortal bodies [d] through His Spirit who dwells IN you (e). <Notes> a) 1 Corinthians 15:56, b) Romans 7:24, c) propitiation or atonement means sin in our flesh transferred into His flesh on the cross so that at His resurrection His righteousness is transferred to us, d) This happens after the resurrection of the dead when we are glorified and our bodies are also redeemed, our blessed hope we patiently wait for – Romans 8:23-25; Titus 2:13; 1 Peter 1:3, e) Romans 8:1-3, 9-11.
The commandments of the “Law” are not just in the 5 books of Moses but permeate every other part of scripture, because the writers were “under the Law” that earns righteousness and favor with God through works or sacrifices to cleanse sin (a). This conditional-loving-favor is the exact opposite of the NT’s gospel logos message of the unconditional-loving-favor-of-grace that is a free grace-gift of God by simply having “trusting-relying-faith” in Jesus Christ because of His one act of obedience on the cross. How does trusting the Law to therefore be “profitable for teaching . . .” have anything to do with “continuing in what you have learned . . . the sacred gramma writings that are powerfully-enabling to make you wise unto salvation by trusting-relaying-faith in Christ Jesus?” Law and Grace are opposite concepts: the first merited, earned, and conditional so what you receive is a wage, and Grace unmerited, unearned, and unconditional so what you receive is a free grace-gift. You can’t even mix these two things – like water and oil! <Notes> a) Romans 10:5; Psalms 119:142; Isaiah 42:21, 51:7.
The Jews also believed the Law and scripture would make them “wise and understanding” and that this would grant them eternal life (a), but they were wrong about that also! Jesus told the bible-student Pharisees and scribes that all this “supposing” didn’t given them zoe genuine-life everlasting, because the scripture just “testifies about Me to come to Me for zoe genuine-life everlasting, but then you ongoing refuse to do so” (b). Ironically, “the secrets of the kingdom have been un-hidden for little children but kept hidden from the ‘wise and understanding ones” (c). <Notes> a) Psalms 110:10, 119:98; Deuteronomy 4:6; Job 28:28; Proverbs 1:7, 9:10, b) John 5:38-40, c) Matthew 11:25, 13:11; Mark 4:11; Luke 8:10; 10:2.
Paul has already told Timothy in his first letter (a) to “charge certain persons NOT to teach any different doctrine” than the gospel logos message. They were “teachers of the Law” who are “devoted to . . . [many Jewish traditions, vain discussions, speculations, etc] rather than the redemptive plan from God that is by trusting-relying-faith.. . . by rejecting this some have made shipwreck of their trusting-relying-faith.” The NT writers often use the prophetic ‘portions’ of scripture to rebuke false teachers exactly because they taught the Law or simply read it in the churches (b). <Notes> a) 1 Timothy 1:3-7, 19, b) 1 Timothy 1:3-7, 6:3-5; 2 Timothy 2:16-18, 23-26; Titus 1:11, 13-14; 2 Corinthians 3:14-15; Acts 15:1.
For example, in 2 Corinthians 3:14-18 Paul criticizes people for listening to the Jewish teachers of the Law who continue to press Christians to “read Moses” or “the old covenant.” Paul says “to this very day,” it causes the hearer’s hearts/minds to be hardened and blocked from seeing God’s glory that is alone in the face of Jesus Christ. Do you want this to happen to you? The only way towards metamorphic transformation is to turn your face or heart/mind away from Moses to Christ. As we optanomai fix/gaze-with our wide-open eyes on Jesus, then this ‘cocoon-to-butterfly’ change can happen but ONLY by the means of the Spirit, who is the Lord! Paul’s argument is that this will never come from reading the torah/nomos Law of conditional-favor. In fact, the exact opposite will happen, for “the enabling-power of sin is the Law” (a) because the “Law came in [time] to increase the trespass” (b). It’s called “Law of sin and/coupled death” (c) for that very reason! So why would Paul include the Law in 2 Timothy 3:16 for what was “profitable for teaching?” <Notes> a) 1 Corinthians 15:56, b) Romans 5:20, c) Romans 8:2.
Paul said in his earliest letter to mostly Jewish-Christians in Galatians 3:21-22: “If [a] Law had been given that could give zoe genuine-life, then righteousness would indeed be by Law. The scripture imprisoned everything under sin, so that ‘The Promise’ – by trusting-relying-faith in Jesus Christ – might be given to those who have trusting-relying-faith.” Earlier in verse 3:14, ‘The Promise” is the received Holy Spirit through trusting-relying-faith which is part of the zoe genuine-life that fulfills promises made to Abraham and His offspring Christ to receive an inheritance (a), which has nothing to do with the Law because these promises to Abraham were made 430 years before the Law (b). The Law couldn’t bring zoe genuine-life (c). Christians don’t receive the wages of the Law but their inheritance because of the promise (d), so we are children of the promise (e). Why would the Law be “profitable for teaching . . .” to a children of a promise made 430 years earlier, whose inheritance has nothing to do with the Law? <Notes> a) Galatians 3:15, 19, b) v. 3:17-18, c) v. 3:21, d) v. 3:39, e) v. 4:28.
However, once Christ came, they were to be freed from this slavery to the Law, made mature adopted sons to receive their rightful inheritance. That’s when they could receive the [singular] firstfruit of their inheritance – the Holy Spirit (a) into their hearts so they could have a heavenly “Daddy” who unconditionally-loves them, and thus NOW experientially, relationally ginosko know God. How could they go back to commandments about things like days, months, seasons, and years, although these are all specified in the Law as well as the “Traditions of the Elders”? How could they go back to “weak and worthless stoicheion elementary ‘abc’ principles of this world?” I wonder how many Christians Paul would have to say this of? <Notes> a) Romans 8:23.
ALL Jews for whom the graphe scriptures were written (a) are “in/by/with/under the Law” (b) who are therefore “under the dominion of sin” (c) until they are set free in Christ through His/our death to the Law (d) because of Christ’s “perfect law of liberty” (e), “the law of Christ” (f) of “unconditional-love for one another” (g). Clearly the ‘Law of Christ’ “did away with” or “abolished/nullified” the Law or old covenant because it is now obsolete (h). We’ve seen that the Law and scripture are often viewed synonymously, for “the graphe scripture imprisoned pas ALL things under sin, so that the promise out-from trusting-relying-faith in Jesus Christ might be given to those who are routinely having trusting-relying-faith” (i). <Notes> a) Romans 3:1-2 explains the advantages of being a Jew: key was being entrusted with the logion Oracles of God. Although by context this often refers only to the prophetic ‘portion of’ scripture spoken in Church as in Hebrews 5:12 that is a model for Christian prophecy in 1 Peter 4:11, it can also mean the Law spoken to Moses by a Messenger, likely Christ, as in Acts 7:38, or ALL of scripture or Law & Prophets as here in Romans 3:2, b) Romans 2:12, 3:19; 1 Corinthians 9:20-21; Galatians 3:23, 4:4-5, 21, 5:18; Philippians 3:6; Hebrews 9:22; James 2:12, c) Romans 3:9, 6:14, 7:14; Galatians 3:22, d) Acts 13:39; Romans 7:4-6, 8:2, 10:4, e) James 1:25, 2:12, f) 1 Corinthians 9:21; Galatians 6:2, g) John 13:34, 15:12; 1 John 2:27; 2 John 1:5; James 2:13, h) Hebrews 8:7, 13; 10:9; Romans 10:4; Ephesians 2:15; cf. 2 Corinthians 5:17, i) Galatians 3:22.
Another reason for NOT including the Law is found in Galatians 4:1-10. Paul says that before Christ came, the Jews “under the Law” were like little children under “guardians and managers,” which were hired servants to insure children got to school and back safely. However, this was only intended until they were of-age, mature sons, ready to receive their inheritance. As little children, they were treated no differently than other house-servants, still enslaved to the stoicheion “elementary ‘abc’ principles” of the world, including Gentile religions and Judaism! However, in Colossians 2:8 Paul warns that they are “taking you captive by philosophy (love of human wisdom) and empty deception, [that comes] down-from/according-to human traditions, down-from/according-to the stoicheion elementary ‘abc’ principles of the world, enslaving you once again.” Christians coming out of slavery to Jewish and other world religions and Greek philosophy returning back to them become “enslaved once again.”
Paul is certainly speaking of the Law here, because he refers to circumcision Colossians 2:11, the record of debt that stood against us with its legal demands being set aside when it was nailed to the cross in Colossians 2:14. However, Christians were not to be ruffled by Jewish judgments against them regarding the Law’s dietary regulations, festivals, new moons, or Sabbaths, all of which are scriptural shadows of Christ in Colossians 2:16-17. “If with Christ you died [in water-baptism] to the stoicheion elementary ‘abc’ principles of the world, why…do you submit to regulations again” in Colossians 2:20?
There are just so many NT bible verses that poop-poo the Law but here is a summary: The Law was only “UNTIL John [the Baptist], but SINCE then the gospel is preached”; it has been stamped “null and void” or nullified, like a paid-off loan, so that the contract is worthless and can thus be thrown away; its ‘way of serving God’ is old or antiquated; is fulfilled and filled-to-completion, accomplished, ended, or finished by Christ and thus has faded, vanished, and passed away; it has been abolished since Christ fulfilled it; has been set aside because of its weakness and uselessness; Christ has does away with it violently or has put it to death the first covenant in order to establish the Second radically-different-in-kind New Covenant; it is no longer binding since we have died to it and thus no longer under it; there is NOW no such Law for those who live by the Holy Spirit; it was added originally by God only as a schoolmaster/escort service, guardian, or manager to protect the Jews when they were being treated as ‘little children‘ slaves of the household, but only until the coming of Christ when they would be freed from slavery and treated as mature sons that could then receive their inheritance; the Law’s regulations to control indulgence are ‘elementary or rudimentary ‘abc’ fundamental principles’ given to the Jews, as in all religions, as infantile ‘milk’ only to lead them to the person of Christ, rules that are actually powerless and absolutely of of no value in curbing the flesh as compared to the ‘solid food’ of the Holy Spirit’s discernment of good and evil – see New Covenant Ways – BT16; the old covenant was changed to a ‘better covenant’ because of a better logos message, better priesthood, better sacrifice, better hope, better promises, and better inheritance; the reading of Moses continues to this day to cover the hearts of the hearers with a veil that blinds, separates, and hardens them from the glory of God in Christ Jesus; the ‘teachers of the Law’ were not permitted to teach in the Church and so were referred to as ‘false teachers or Judaizers or the Circumcision Party’.
The negativity gets worse: The ‘Law of sin and death’ that we’ve been set free by the Law of the Spirit of zoe genuine-life; The Law is weakened by the flesh; makes sin known to us and shows sin to be sin so that through the commandment sin might become sinful beyond measure; the Law holds us as captive slaves and controls us. The scripture imprisons everything under sin; the Law arouses our sinful passions; it is the enabling-power of sin; it is the reason sin comes alive in us; Personified Sin uses the Law to produce all kinds of sin in us; the Law multiplies sin; it condemns us; it kills us; it brings wrath and death; by it no one is justified; doing of one rule of the Law commits us to doing it all, bringing a curse upon ourselves; the Law only promises merited, earned, conditional-favor from God, which is the opposite of unconditional-favor-of-grace so that any attempts at the doing of the Law causes us to fall from unconditional-favor-of-grace, causing us to be severed from Christ; the Law is absolutely not of trusting-relying-faith in Christ that alone saves; and the Law made nothing perfect, so absolutely won’t perfect us.
We know from Paul’s writing that these “impostors . . . deceiving and being deceived” of 2 Timothy 3:13 are actually “teachers of the Law” that have disguised, which is a key to “deceiving” others, themselves as Christians, “false brothers secretly brought in, who slipped in to spy out our freedom (a) that we have in Christ, so that they might bring us into slavery (b)” (c), those who insisted on circumcision (d), which oppose the “truth of the gospel” (e). <Notes> a) context: from the Law’s commandments and works, b) context: to works of the Law, c) Galatians 2:4, d) Galatians 2:3, see also Circumcision Party: Acts 11:2, Galatians 2:12, Titus 1:10, e) Galatians 2:5.
Paul has already warned Timothy in his earlier letter “As I urged you [before] . . . charge certain persons not to teach any different doctrine (a), nor to devote themselves to myths and endless genealogies (b), which promote speculations (c) rather than God’s redemptive plan (d) that is by trusting-relying-faith (e). Certain persons, by swerving from this, have wandered away into vain discussion (f), desiring to be teachers of the Law” (g). Paul goes on in 1:8-11 to say they are misapplying the Law to Christians as if they were “ungodly sinners, unholy and profane,” as if Christian behavior was somehow contrary to “the sound doctrine that is down-from/according the gospel of the glory of the blessed God, which I have been entrusted.” <Notes> a) Jesus our hope 1 Timothy 1:1, by ‘The-trusting-relying-Faith‘ v 1:2, and unconditional-favor-of-grace, mercy, and peace from the Father and Jesus our Lord v 1:2, b) all Jewish tendencies, c) the Jews prided themselves in controversy and debate, d) household management, e) opposite of works of the Law, f) craving for controversy and quarrels about words – 1 Timothy 6:4, debate of the scribes – 1 Corinthians 1:20, plausible arguments – Colossians 2:4, arguments and lofty opinions against obeying Christ – 2 Corinthians 10:5, g) 1 Timothy 1:3-7.
These “teachers” are thus “contrary” to “The-Trusting-Relying-Faith, hope, mercy, unconditional-favor-of-grace, and peace” that alone is in the gospel! Paul is telling Timothy to “shut them up!” Paul told Timothy earlier in 2 Timothy 2:14-18 to “remind [the Jewish teachers] of these things (a), and charge them before God not to quarrel about words (b), which does no good, but only ruins the hearers (c). . . . avoid irreverent babble, for it will lead people into more and more ungodliness, and their talk will spread like gangrene . . . [like those] who have swerved from The Truth (g) . . . upsetting The Trusting-Relying-Faith of some.” But to Timothy, Paul said in 2 Timothy 2:15, “Give zealous concentration and diligent effort (d) to present yourself to God as one approved, a worker who has no need to be ashamed, rightly handling (e) logos message of The Truth, which is we know is the gospel message (f) of Jesus Christ, who is The Truth (g). <Notes> a) salvation in Christ – v. 10, b) I witnessed this in 5 bible schools: debating the meaning of bible words, which manuscript readings are more accurate, etc, c) that’s why I didn’t finish my Masters in Divinity, d) spoudazo doesn’t mean ‘study’ as the KJV, KJ21, AKJV, AMP, AMPC, BRG, DRA, GNV, JUB, MEV erroneously propagated, e) cutting a straight road, without deviation, f) Colossians 1:5; Acts 15:7; Ephesians 1:13, g) John 14:6.
The Jewish teachers of the Law were misapplying the scriptures to Christians, when it was so clear that through the Messiah’s final sacrifice for all time, Christians were now set free from the Law (a), and died through water-baptism to the Law that held us captive (b). Paul makes it crystal clear in Romans 7:6 that since “we are now released from the Law, having died to that which held us captive, we now serve [God] by the means of the completely-different-in-kind New (c) Way of the Spirit and absolutely not in fact by the means of the palios old “antiquated, worn-out, weak, worthless” way of [singular] gramma Letter (d).” That’ why Romans 8:2 says “the Law of the Spirit of zoe genuine-life has set you free in Christ Jesus from the Law of sin and death.” The “tablets of stone” is the “ministry of death, carved in letters on stone . . . the ministry of condemnation” (e). <Notes> a) Romans 8:2, b) Galatians 2:19; Romans 7:4, c) chadash, kainos: fresh, completely-different-in-kind, unprecedented, sharing nothing with its predecessors, unique, and superior, d) gramma without article: sacred writings of scripture as a composite whole, not distinguishing a portion of it such as the Law – see BT4, e) 2 Corinthians 3:3, 7, 9.
That didn’t stop the Jewish teachers from continuing to misapply the scriptures to Christians: Judging them for not obeying dietary laws, festivals, new moons, and Sabbaths (a); forbidding Christian leaders from marriage (b) and requiring obedience to abstinence from foods (c); requiring obedience to food and drink Laws, ceremonial washings, and regulations for the body (d); obedience to many strange teachings about food rather than about unconditional-favor-of-grace (e); that God’s kingdom was about righteousness through obedience to ‘eating and drinking’ rules instead of the ‘righteousness, peace, and joy by the Holy Spirit‘ (f). They think their bible was meant to debate (g) or quarrel about words (h), creating foolish controversies, dissensions, and quarrels about the Law, stirring up division in the Church (i). They are worldly people, devoid of the Holy Spirit, causing divisions (j). Paul also tells Titus the same thing, “They must be silenced . . . teaching . . . what they ought not to teach” (k). <Notes> a) Colossians 2:16, b) like the Catholic Church and other religions do, c) 1 Timothy 4:3, d) Hebrews 9:10, e) Hebrews 13:9, f) Romans 14:17, 21, g) the Jews still believe this is a form of worship or meditation, like the movie “Yentl”, h) 2 Timothy 2:14, i) Titus 3:9-10, j) Jude 1:19, k) Titus 1:11.
Paul was telling Timothy to not get confused (a) between what WAS the logos word or message of God in the old covenant and what IS NOW that logos Word or Message of God in the completely-different-in-kind New (b) Covenant. Even the commandments of God have radically changed. If you don’t understand this, you will certainly not “cut a straight line” and thus “mishandle” much of the bible! Obviously Paul is not including the “Law of commandments” into the ‘portions of’ scripture that are “profitable for teaching . . .” in 2 Timothy 3:16 – see the many other reasons in BT7. <Notes> a) as the Jewish teachers were, b) chadash, kainos: fresh, completely-different-in-kind, unprecedented, sharing nothing with its predecessors, unique, and superior.
The only “good works” that count now under the completely-different-in-kind New Covenant are the only 2 commandments rolled up into ONE (a): “For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision [to obey the Law] nor uncircumcision [to not obey the Law] counts for anything, but ONLY trusting-relying-faith working through-the-realizing-channel-of unconditional-love.” It is “the work of trusting-relying-faith and/coupled work of unconditional-love” (b). So at the end, Jesus says “I know your works: your unconditional-love and/coupled trusting-relying-faith even your service [to others] and/coupled your patient endurance” (c) – note the parallel structure called ‘metonymy!’ It’s no wonder “faith and love” are coupled 6 times (d). <Notes> a) 1 John 3:23, b) 1 Thessalonians 1:3, c) Revelation 2:19, d) 1 Thessalonians 3:6, 5:8; 1 Timothy 1:14, 2:15; 2 Timothy 1:13; Revelation 2:19.
That’s because there was only 1 “work for the food that endures for zoe genuine-life everlasting, only 1 “to-do to be doing the works of God” and Jesus said: “This is the work of God, that you should ongoingly have trusting-relying-faith in Himself whom God has sent (a). And there is only 1 other entole officially-decreed universal commandment given to Christians found in the NT, that Jesus said was “My commandment” (b) and rightfully said it a completely-different-in-kind “New Commandment” by definition, that Christians were taught from the very beginning of their trusting-relying-faith (c) and that is “to unconditionally-love one another JUST as I have unconditionally-loved you.” That’s why this commandment is called “the Law of Christ” (d), thus “bearing one another’s burdens” (e), “bearing one another in unconditional-love” (f). Can you see how the definition of “Law” and what “commandments” are part of it have radically changed going from the old to the completely-different-in-kind New Covenant? Why are many Christians “borrowing” from the old and carry them forward into the New? Paul would argue vehemently against you! This is actually the foundational problem creating The Great Wall quenching the Holy Spirit in the Church! <Notes> a) John 6:28-29, b) John 15:12, c) John 13:34; 1 John 2:7; 2 John 1:5, d) 1 Corinthians 9:21; Galatians 6:2, e) Galatians 6:2, f) Ephesians 4:2.
As Christian musicians, why do so many Christians spend more time reading the OT, which is all “shadows, copies, corresponding types, and prefigures of things to come” that simply “testify about Me,” Jesus said, when they can NOW “come to Me for zoe genuine-live everlasting,” and thus have His New Covenant, and the Holy Spirit that the scripture promised? Why settle for the shadow when you can have the person casting it, especially when “the scripture imprisoned everything under sin?” With the multitude of terribly negative things the NT says about the Law, much that Paul wrote, how could Paul be telling Timothy to include the Law in the “portion of’ scripture that is “profitable for teaching . . .” He would be more than contradicting himself!
The Law is very negative by definition, being very judgmental and condemning. No wonder those who read and study it become the same, being the opposite of Grace and Truth that came into being only through Jesus per John 1:17! Grace being unconditional, unmerited, and unearned loving-favor is the polar opposite of Law being conditional, merited, and earning loving-favor. The can’t mix, like New wine of the Holy Spirit in the old wine-skins of the OT, like the anointing oil of the Holy Spirit trying to mix with palios old, stagnant, weak, worn-out, used-up OT Laws. You can’t mix the 97.4% of the OT that is Law-based and 100% of the NT that is Grace-based. One is bad new and the other is the “Great News” of the gospel.
Sure the Law was intended to be good, righteous, and holy in that it came from God who alone is any of that! It was intended for our “instruction” but because of Sin taking advantage of the commandments of the Law it aroused and multiplied sin exponentially, instantly condemning us to death, and the demon-lawyers in heaven’s courts use it day and night to accuse us before God. That’s why it’s called “The Law of sin and death.” “The power of sin is the Law.” The book of ALL our lives are filled with lines and lines of sin, and the ONLY way they can be blotted out before The Great White Throne Judgment Day after The Great and Terrible Day of the Lord, is for Christ’s blood to stamp them “Paid in Full, Not Guilty.” Our public repentance/turning-from-sin-to-Jesus and confession of “Jesus is my Messiah-Savior and Lord-Owner-Master” during our water-baptism where we die with Him as we go under the waters and resurrect with Him after coming out of this immersion into Christ, is the ONLY way we can get our names written in the Lamb’s Book of Eternal Life. Religion will have to try everything else! The LAW will have you try 613 commandments! The ONLY way to cut the power-cord to the OLD MAN living inside of us that just wants to endless sin, being so self-centered, the ONLY way to make “sin to lie dead, lifeless” is to be “apart from the Law” by “dying to the Law with Christ in water-baptism.” The only way to escape to sure consequences of sin that is eternal death or separation from God, is to die with Christ and be resurrected with Christ in water-baptism. Just 1 Peter 3:21 says, “Baptism now saves you – not as a removal of dirt from the body but as an appeal/confession to God for a good conscience – through the resurrection of Jesus Christ.”
“Wisdom and understanding” won’t come from the scripture, 97.4% which is Law-based, because now it’s “unhidden to little children that we must become like.” They don’t read and study to learn. We get by the means of the Holy Spirit as we humbly come to Jesus! We get through genuine, experiential, intimate, relational epignosis knowledge, not through gnosis informational-knowledge at all! Bible study can actually be a “trap, snare, and retribution with bent backs forever” – see New Covenant Ways – BT17. Like Jesus, Paul heavily criticized the methods of learning from God the Law-teachers used, so why would Paul being telling Timothy to repeat their mistakes by even using the Law in his teaching? Paul tells people that just “reading Moses” will harden your heart but true transformation comes for gazing at Jesus’ glory, not Moses’!
The ‘portions of’ the scripture being used in the NT are those to “reprove and correct” opponents, and “gently-as-with-a-child teach and train” Jews to become Christians, and these are clearly prophetic “oracles of God” about Jesus, salvation through trusting-relying-faith, His completely different-in-kind New Covenant, and the promise of the Holy Spirit for ministry no longer by the gramma writings. However, these were still elementary-school ‘abc’ fundamentals ‘milk’ compared to the ‘solid food’ of learning through discernment by the means of the Holy Spirit that is promised under the New Covenant. They needed to grow up out of the OT! Writing-based learning, especially from rules is “a ministry of condemnation and death, for the gramma writings kill, but the Spirit gives zoe genuine-life.” All these rules are for sure “elementary-school ‘abc’ fundamentals” to all religions. But Jesus came to bring relationship to God, not rules!
The teachers of the Law were considered false teachers compared to the gospel logos message of the truth. The Church has many impostors within it, seeking to drag free Christians back into rules-based obedience instead of “the obedience of faith” that Paul uses as his thesis for the book of Romans, starting with it and ending with it. Paul told his pastors in training to shut these teachers up, but many of today’s churches invite them in! However, going back to OT practices meant you fell from grace, abandoned The Faith, instead of “enduring to the end to be saved” and thus “no sacrifice for sins remains.” Even just getting circumcised to feel safer by obeying the smallest “sign of the old covenant” was fatal!
Why are some Christians pushing the 10 commandments, even the 2 greatest in the OT? Jesus only answered trick questions by the Law-teachers? He never taught them to His disciples, but He told the people how much stricter God’s Law actually are so they would see the Law’s “faults that called for a second commandment to replace the first.” They needed to see their need for a Messiah! Now there is only 2 commandments in the equally completely-different-in-kind New Covenant – faith in Jesus and unconditionally-loving everyone, not just our “like-kind-fellow” neighbor as ourselves. Even if we hated the Roman Gentiles, nowhere near our “like-kind-fellow” neighbors, and even if we hate ourselves, we are still called to unconditionally-love everyone just as Jesus does. A radically different New Commandment by definition and description! These are the “good works” of a Christian that Christ has foreordained. This is what makes us sanctified, holy, righteous, and godly in our living, though the Lord has declared us all these by His propitiation or transfer of His nature for our nature on the cross. That’s why Paul only preaches and teaches about the cross. Why are we doing otherwise?
The whole point of the OT was to act as a guardian, manager, even prison-guard to keep the Jews safe from the surrounding nations UNTIL Christ came. But once He came and fulfilled the whole point of the Law that also testified about Him, albeit sparsely, then it has vanished away, ended, been finished, was nullified, was abolished, and replaced with the second New Covenant. Christians should have died to the first covenant or Law. If you go back to be enslaved by the Law, you forfeit your inheritance as redeemed sons of God. The “commandments, rules, ordinances, precepts, and regulations of the Law may appear to be wise but are of absolutely no value in curbing the desires of the flesh.” Only Christ’s blood can wash sin away through His death and our continued confession as often as we fail. Only being filled by the Spirit can you possibly overflow with enabling-power over sin! The kingdom of God isn’t about rules anymore but “righteousness, peace, and joy by the means of the Spirit of holiness.” Let’s grow up by getting out of the OT and getting into the NT, but especially getting into the Holy Spirit that goes way beyond ancient writings!
Lord, move my gazing eyes away from ancient writings as “the Word of God” to You as God’s Voice to Your sheep. Open my eyes that I might really see You and Your plans. Open my ears to really hear to understand your prophetic-rhema words that are Spirit and zoe genuine-life that I might do Your will and for Your kingdom to come on earth as it is in heaven. I put down my religious obsession with ancient letters and come to You, the very purpose of the writings, and take Your yoke-harness of learning to learn directly from You by Your “One is Your Teacher” Holy Spirit. I no longer settle for the “shadow” of the man Jesus that scripture is. Lord, I know I have to choose Law or Grace, works or Faith, old wine-skins or the New Wine that won’t even fit in them, letters of writings about holiness or the Holy Spirit, a relationship with ancient rules of living from “the Word of God” or a relationship with the living “Word of God” as Jesus Christ. Lord, I choose Grace by Faith, the New Wine of the Spirit of holiness, and relationship with the Living “Word of God.”
Lord, free me from the negative voice of the Law of commandments with its judgmental, accusing, pointing finger in my life or others. I died with Christ to 97.4% of the OT. I am free from it’s conditional-love slavery, it’s so-called “wisdom” that can’t curb the indulgence of the flesh. I am free now to serve You by the Holy Spirit. The secrets of the kingdom are revealed to little children but kept hidden from the bible scholars! It’s now so simple that little children can obey: Only 2 commandments – keep my trusting-relying-faith in You and keep unconditionally-loving others like You do. And You made it even easier when we surrender to Your Holy Spirit to fill us up to overflowing and giving us Your enabling-power and self-control.
Lord, thank You that I died with You in water-baptism and I felt You come into Me when I resurrected to New Life coming out of those waters. I felt the burden of sin lifted and uncontrollably cried even though I rarely do. Lord, I now live my life in continual repentance, surrender, and confession just as with that day when I declared “Jesus is my Messiah-Savior and Lord-Master. Now I live for You, no longer just myself!”
Lord, still use the prophetic ‘portions of’ the OT scriptures to lead Your Jewish people to their Messiah Jesus. And for us Gentiles, let us move on from this “milk” to the “solid-food” of discerning good and evil simply by the means of the Holy Spirit. Let us never by accused of being false teachers by teaching the OT Law of commandments, not even the 10 or the 2 greatest, but instead “preach nothing but Christ crucified” just like Paul vowed. Now we only have 2 commandments coupled into 1: Faith and Love.