Why don’t most Christians follow the Mosaic Law?

There are some who say that Christians are supposed to follow the Mosaic Law. But very few Christians do so. Why?

We have to recognize first that Christ is our high priest forever, according to Hebrews 6:20.

20 where Jesus has entered as a forerunner for us, having become a high priest forever according to the order of Melchizedek.

Second, we have to recognize that the priesthood changed from the Levitical (order of Aaron) to the order of Melchizedek. Not only was there a change in priesthood, but a change in law as well.
Hebrews 7:11

11 Now if perfection was through the Levitical priesthood (for on the basis of it the people received the Law), what further need was there for another priest to arise according to the order of Melchizedek, and not be designated according to the order of Aaron?

Third, we must recognize that when the priesthood changed, so did the law change.

Hebrews 7:12

 12 For when the priesthood is changed, of necessity there takes place a change of law also.

Indeed, we  see in Hebrews 7:18-19 that the law was set aside because of its weakness and uselessness.

18 For, on the one hand, there is a setting aside of a former commandment because of its weakness and uselessness 19 (for the Law made nothing perfect), and on the other hand there is a bringing in of a better hope, through which we draw near to God.

So most Christians do not follow the Mosaic Law because it has been set aside. This is not to say we ignore what the Bible teaches about right and wrong, but that the Law was set aside. Christians look for principles to follow in the New Testament and most if not all of these principles can be traced back to concrete literal regulations in the Mosaic Law. It boils down to love God and love others.

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31 Responses

  1. Hey there, wbmoore!

    A reader of mine told me about your blog (he called us twins because we have the same theme =o>) and I wanted to let you know that I have a blog dedicated almost entirely to the issues in the Hebrew Roots Movement and related Law keeping sects. Those issues I address are more from the camp that say that Torah observance is mandatory for all believers, a view which I challenge and examine.

    I just wanted you to know there is another resource out there should you ever need it. I have drop-down tabs at the top of my site – lots of info and resources there. The goal at JGIG (Joyfully Growing In Grace) is to equip believers with the truths of the Gospel as they evaluate the beliefs of Law keepers that cross their paths. If you get a chance to stop by, let me know what you think!

    Grace and peace,
    -JGIG

    • JGIG, welcome and thanks for the info!

      This blog is intended to teach practical application of scripture, so I tend to deal with everything. i hope you find it useful.

  2. The author of the comment that Hebrews 7:15-18 can be used to help justify the supposed abolishment of the continued practice of most of the Mosaic laws flubbed up royally. The following quotation from Tithinghelps.com, described as a top religious website, explains what I am referring to: Hebrews 7:15-18: “And it is yet far more evident if, in the likeness of Melchizedek, there arises another priest 16 who has come, not according to the law of a fleshly commandment, but according to the power of an endless life. 17 For He testifies: ‘You are a priest forever according to the order of Melchizedek.’ 18 For on the one hand there is an annulling of the former commandment because of its weakness and unprofitableness.” — New King James Version. ANALYSIS: (editing, will be completed soon.) The subject here in verse 18 is the annulling of only a specific law concerning the physical, Aaronic priesthood, NOT ALL of the Mosaic laws. Many reputable translations explain in a more understandable way the transition (and abolishment or annulling) of the old Mosaic, Aaronic priesthood to the new priesthood led by Jesus Christ. By reading the following 11 translations you can see that the emphasis is on only a genealogical qualification or the law requiring an ancestral line of priests to serve that was nullified, not the entire law of Moses. Also, since when does one equal many? I thought one always equals one, not many dozens of laws. The above words “former commandment” contain no “s” in the word “commandment,” so it is far more likely only one specific law is being referred to here, not multiple laws. Hebrews 7:16-18: “who was appointed to be a priest, not on the basis of a regulation concerning his ancestry, but rather on the basis of the power of an indestructible life. 17 For it is declared about Him, ‘You are a priest forever according to the order of Melchizedek.’ 18 Indeed, the cancellation of the former regulation has occurred because it was weak and ineffective.” — International Standard Version. “Who has been constituted a Priest, not on the basis of a bodily legal requirement [an externally imposed command concerning His physical ancestry], but on the basis of the power of an endless and indestructible Life. 17 For it is witnessed of Him, You are a Priest forever after the order (with the rank) of Melchizedek. 18 So a previous physical regulation and command is cancelled because of its weakness and ineffectiveness and uselessness–” — The Amplified Bible. “who doesn’t become a [priest] based on a legal command concerning physical descent but based on the power of an indestructible life. 17 For it has been testified: You are a priest forever in the order of Melchizedek. 18 So the previous commandment is annulled because it was weak and unprofitable.” — Holman Christian Standard Bible. “who has become a priest, not on the basis of a legal requirement, concerning bodily descent, but by the power of an indestructible life. 17 For it is witnessed of Him, ‘You are a priest forever, after the order of Melchizedek.’ 18 On the one hand, a former commandment is set aside because of its weakness and uselessness.” — Holy Bible, English Standard Version. “one who has become a priest, not through a legal requirement concerning physical descent, but through the power of an indestructible life. 17 For it is attested of Him, ‘You are a priest forever, according to the order of Melchizedek.’ 18 There is, on the one hand, the abrogation of an earlier commandment because it was weak and ineffectual.” — The New Revised Standard Version. “who has been made, not after the law of a fleshly mitzvah, but after the power of an endless life: 17 for it is testified, ‘You are a Kohen forever, According to the order of Malki-Tzedek.’ 18 For there is an annulling of a foregoing mitzvah because of its weakness and uselessness.” — Hebrew Names Version of World English Bible. (Mitzvah refers not to all the Mosaic laws, but to only one of them.) “He became a priest, not by meeting the old requirement of belonging to the tribe of Levi, but by the power of a life that cannot be destroyed. 17 And the psalmist pointed this out when he said of Christ, ‘You are a priest forever in the line of Melchizedek.’ 18 Yes, the old requirement about the priesthood was set aside because it was weak and useless.” — The New Living Translation. “who becomes, not after the torah of a fleshly misvah, but after the dynamis of an endless life. 17 For he witnesses, You are a priest to the eons after the order of Malki-Sedeq. 18 For indeed there becomes a putting away of the preceding misvah because of its frailty and unbeneficialness thereof.” (A misvah is about the same as a mitzvah.) — exeGeses Companion Bible. “…… for He is appointed not for possessing any legal physical qualifications, but by virtue of a life that cannot end.” — Goodspeed New Testament. “….. who is appointed not on the basis of a physical qualification but on the basis of a power flowing from a life that cannot end.” — Williams New Testament. Again, what was annulled in verse 18 was the continuance of the Aaronic priesthood, not Old Testament laws as a whole. Old Testament laws certainly cannot be described as useless, weak, ineffective, unprofitable, or frail. Those laws literally save lives, preserve health, allow prosperity, and show reverence and obedience to our Creator. Many New Testament verses describe the “law,” which includes the Mosaic laws, as good, profitable, holy, just, and worthy of being upheld and established. Also, if the above Hebrew verses mean that all Old Testament laws have been done away with, we can now break many laws of basic decency that even most pagan societies do not break, laws not specifically listed in the New Testament, which is a ridiculous supposition. For further study go to thercg.org/books/tbdse.html#heb7 and scroll down to Hebrews 7:18-19.

    • It may be you are right, that the annulling of the law spoken of in verse 18 is for only one of the laws that make up the Law – it can be understood both ways (one law of the Law, or the Law itself). But either way, in Mt 5:17-19, Jesus said He did not come to abolish the Law. In fact, He said, “until heaven and earth pass away, not the smallest letter or stroke shall pass from the Law until all is accomplished. Whoever then annuls one of the least of these commandments, and teaches others to do the same, shall be called least in the kingdom of heaven….”

      The annulling of one single regulation is contrary to any understanding of Mt 5:17-19 which does not believe Jesus has changed the Law – even if you believe only one regulation was changed to make Him high priest, rather than the entire Law was changed, since it would be abolishing the Law, or at least some part of it.

      Mt 5:17-19 reads,

      17 ”Do not think that I came to abolish the Law or the Prophets ; I did not come to abolish but to fulfill. 18 ”For truly I say to you, until heaven and earth pass away, not the smallest letter or stroke shall pass from the Law until all is accomplished. 19 ”Whoever then annuls one of the least of these commandments, and teaches others to do the same, shall be called least in the kingdom of heaven ; but whoever keeps and teaches them, he shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven.”

      So then, either the book of Hebrews was not written to Jews or it was. But its evident from the text that it was intended or a specific community of Hebrew Christians. The group had a definite history (Heb. 2:3; 5:11-13; 6:9-10; 10:32-34; 12:4; 13:17) and a definite link with the author (Heb 13:18-19,23). Indeed the author has personal knowledge of the group’s past experience. The group was apparently a part of a larger community (Heb 5:12; 10:25; 13:24), but is distinguished from its leaders and others with whom they form a Christian presence in that social setting (Heb 13:17,24). For more, you can read https://wbmoore.wordpress.com/2009/01/18/study-of-salvation-in-book-of-hebrews/

      Since the book of Hebrews was written directly to Hebrew believers, it must apply to them. But for it to apply, then we have to understand Hebrews 7:11-19 and Mt 5:17-19 together in a way so there is no contradiction.

      If Christ did not fulfill the prophets and the Law with His suffering and death, then any change in the Law to make Him high priest would contradict Jesus’ own words, so Hebrews could not apply to Jews. But both the book of Hebrews and the Law were written FOR Jews. The only other option is to accept that Christ fulfilled everything on the cross. If that is the case, then the Law has been fulfilled and what Paul states about the Law is true and applies to Jews and to Gentiles.

      I went more into this in my blog entry: https://wbmoore.wordpress.com/2010/08/09/either-hebrews-does-not-apply-to-jewish-believers-or-the-law-was-set-aside-for-all-believers/

      However, while verse 18 might be able to be understood as speaking of only one law of the Law, I think it applies to the entire Law. The reason is Hebrews 10:4-9 tells us that the sacrificial system was set aside to establish the will of God.

      4 because it is impossible for the blood of bulls and goats to take away sins. 5 Therefore, when Christ came into the world, he said: “Sacrifice and offering you did not desire, but a body you prepared for me; 6 with burnt offerings and sin offerings you were not pleased. 7 Then I said, ‘Here I am—it is written about me in the scroll— I have come to do your will, O God.’ ” 8 First he said, “Sacrifices and offerings, burnt offerings and sin offerings you did not desire, nor were you pleased with them” (although the law required them to be made). 9 Then he said, “Here I am, I have come to do your will.” He sets aside the first to establish the second.

      So we have the law dealing with the levitical priesthood being done away with in Hebrews 7:18, and then we see in Hebrews 10:4-9 that the sacrificial system was done away with by Christ. So yes, the Law was done away with.

      You wrote:

      Old Testament laws certainly cannot be described as useless, weak, ineffective, unprofitable, or frail. Those laws literally save lives, preserve health, allow prosperity, and show reverence and obedience to our Creator. Many New Testament verses describe the “law,” which includes the Mosaic laws, as good, profitable, holy, just, and worthy of being upheld and established. Also, if the above Hebrew verses mean that all Old Testament laws have been done away with, we can now break many laws of basic decency that even most pagan societies do not break, laws not specifically listed in the New Testament, which is a ridiculous supposition.

      The problem is, you are contradicting what scripture says, “18 For, on the one hand, there is a setting aside of a former commandment because of its weakness and uselessness”. So the author of Hebrews certainly thought at least one commandment was weak and useless.

      Even so, we know that 2 Timothy 3:16-17 tells us: “16 All Scripture is inspired by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, for training in righteousness; 17 so that the man of God may be adequate, equipped for every good work.” So what was it weak and useless for? for making people perfect, as we see in Hebrews 7;19 “or the Law made nothing perfect”….

      Not only was that law weak and useless, we are no longer under the Law.
      Galatians 3:25 reads, “Now that faith has come, we are no longer under the supervision of the law.”

      Romans 7:6 reads, “But now, by dying to what once bound us, we have been released from the law so that we serve in the new way of the Spirit, and not in the old way of the written code.”

      Ephesians 2:15-16 reads, “15 by abolishing the law of commandments and ordinances, that he might create in himself one new man in place of the two, so making peace, 16 and might reconcile us both to God in one body through the cross, thereby killing the hostility.”

      Romans 8:2

      2 For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has set you free from the law of sin and of death.

      Paul obviously did not peach the need to follow the Law, OTHERWISE he (and the church in Jerusalem) would have compelled Titus to be circumcised. But we see in Galatians 2: 3 “But not even Titus, who was with me, though he was a Greek, was compelled to be circumcised. ”

      In fact, Paul made it clear in 1 Corinthians 9:20 that HE, Paul himself, was not under the Law.

      20 To the Jews I became as a Jew, so that I might win Jews; to those who are under the Law, as under the Law though not being myself under the Law, so that I might win those who are under the Law;

      We see more of this in 1 Corinthians 20:19-23, where Paul said he is not under the Law,but was not free from God’s law, since he is under Christ’s law:

      19 Though I am free and belong to no man, I make myself a slave to everyone, to win as many as possible. 20To the Jews I became like a Jew, to win the Jews. To those under the law I became like one under the law (though I myself am not under the law), so as to win those under the law. 21To those not having the law I became like one not having the law (though I am not free from God’s law but am under Christ’s law), so as to win those not having the law. 22To the weak I became weak, to win the weak. I have become all things to all men so that by all possible means I might save some. 23I do all this for the sake of the gospel, that I may share in its blessings.

      I also went into the difference between abolish and fulfill in this blog entry: https://wbmoore.wordpress.com/2009/02/14/what-do-abolish-and-fulfill-mean-in-matthew-5-13-20/ and https://wbmoore.wordpress.com/2009/02/19/should-believers-in-christ-to-be-circumcised/ and https://wbmoore.wordpress.com/2011/12/07/another-look-at-the-will-of-god-rebellion-lawlessness-and-faith/

      As I have written before, this does not mean we are without Law. As we see in Romans 8:2, we have the law of the spirit of life in Christ Jesus. If we love God, we will fulfill the Law by loving God and others. But following the law for its own sake or for righteousness will not avail us anything. In fact, if we keep the Law but can not keep any part of the Law, then we are condemned – or so says James 2:10,
      10 For whoever keeps the whole law and yet stumbles at just one point is guilty of breaking all of it.

      In fact, relying on observing the Law puts you under a curse. Galatians 3:10

      10 All who rely on observing the law are under a curse, for it is written: “Cursed is everyone who does not continue to do everything written in the Book of the Law.”

      So no, we are not under the Mosaic Law. It DOES teach us but we do have to follow the law – Christ’s law.

      • You cover a lot of material so at this time I just want to concentrate on a very small part of it.
        You said,
        In fact, relying on observing the Law puts you under a curse. Galatians 3:10

        10 All who rely on observing the law are under a curse, …….”

        Don’t you think it is actually far more reasonable to believe that the above verse is simply emphasizing that those who try to rely SOLELY on Old Testament law keeping for salvation WITHOUT, repeat, WITHOUT faith that the sacrifice of Jesus is what now really saves them, are under a type of curse???? Verse 10 specifies that law keeping, and only law keeping is being relied upon, apparently of course for salvation, and also apparently without faith. Verse 10 does not really say that law keeping by itself induces some kind of curse. Law keeping COMBINED with the appropriate faith definitely does not bring on a curse according to other verses. Remember Paul’s verse that says that it is the doers and not just the hearers of the law that will be justified?

        I strongly believe that you used verse 10 above far out of context, and read into it what is not there.

        • It MAY be the substitution of Law for faith that Paul was speaking about, but I dont think so.

          I do not think Paul is referring to the Law without faith. I think Paul was very specific to not add Law to faith, but to both start and finish by faith.
          Galatians 3:3-4

          3 Are you so foolish? Having begun by the Spirit, are you now being perfected by the flesh? 4 Did you suffer so many things in vain—if indeed it was in vain? 5 So then, does He who provides you with the Spirit and works miracles among you, do it by the works of the Law, or by hearing with faith?

          Indeed, the Law is NOT of faith, but to practice them you should live by them.
          Galatians 3:12-14

          12 However, the Law is not of faith; on the contrary, “HE WHO PRACTICES THEM SHALL LIVE BY THEM.” 13 Christ redeemed us from the curse of the Law, having become a curse for us—for it is written, “CURSED IS EVERYONE WHO HANGS ON A TREE”— 14 in order that in Christ Jesus the blessing of Abraham might come to the Gentiles, so that we would receive the promise of the Spirit through faith.

          Not only that, but the purpose of the Law was to lead us to Christ and now that faith has come, we no longer need the Law.
          Galatians 3:23-25
          23 But before faith came, we were kept in custody under the law, being shut up to the faith which was later to be revealed. 24 Therefore the Law has become our tutor to lead us to Christ, so that we may be justified by faith. 25 But now that faith has come, we are no longer under a tutor.

          But even if I am wrong about Paul saying to not add to faith here, the rest stands – paul said the Law was intended to lead us to Christ and we are no longer under the Law.

  3. I would like to further clarify my above response. Hebrews 7:11,12,19: “Therefore if perfection were through the Levitical priesthood …….. 12 For the priesthood being changed, of necessity there is also a change of the law …….. 19 for the law made nothing perfect; on the other hand, there is the bringing in of a better hope, through which we draw near to God.” The law referred to in verse 19 that made nothing perfect only refers to the law requiring the Levitical priesthood to teach righteousness, described specifically in verse 11 as a failure in perfection. The better hope brought in or introduced by Jesus involves the addition (not the abolition of anything except the Levitical priesthood law) of the gift of the Holy Spirit (not available in the Old Covenant), the gift of eventual immortality (also not available in the Old Covenant), and the gift of complete forgiveness of sin through the sacrifice of Jesus.

  4. I really do believe that we need to be extremely cautious when trying to understand controversial verses translated in to the English language. Believe it or not, it seems quite true that not just a few, but the majority of English translated Bibles were translated from the Greek and Hebrew by anti-Mosaic law translators, believing that we no longer need to obey most of the Old Testament laws. To help prove my point, just look at what biased translators ADDED at the end of Mark 7:19: “In saying this, Jesus declared all foods clean.” That added, incredibly arrogant comment IS NOT in the original Greek and is not in the more conservative, literal translations such as the King James Bible. I consider that remark almost unforgiveable, deceiving so many trusting readers.

    Don’t you agree that when you have 60 verses that say one thing and 9 verses that SEEM to say the opposite, it is just good common sense to go with what the 60 verses say instead of stubbornly clinging to what the other 9 verses initially appear to say? I noticed that you conveniently ignored answering my question about remembering what Paul said in Romans 2:13: “for not the hearers of the law are just in the sight of God, but the DOERS of the law will be justified.” If you will go to the trouble of counting the pro-law verses in the New Testament versus the abolished law verses, you should find that the pro-law verses significantly outnumber the other verses. You said,

    “Paul obviously did not peach the need to follow the Law, OTHERWISE he (and the church in Jerusalem) would have compelled Titus to be circumcised. But we see in Galatians 2: 3 “But not even Titus, who was with me, though he was a Greek, was compelled to be circumcised. ” I don’t know why you brought up circumcision here because that very small part of the Mosaic laws was considered abolished in what was recorded in the book of Acts. Basically only circumcision and the animal and grain sacrifices (discussed in Hebrews) were specifically pointed out as abolished by the Apostles. Tithing is a Mosaic law, commanded later even by Jesus Himself: Matthew 23:23 “…… You SHOULD TITHE, yes, but do not neglect the more important things.” — New Living Translation. Are you going to throw that verse out the window?

    Galatians 5:18: “But IF (did you just see that HUGE IF word?) you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the law.” (not under the penalty of the law if you break it [Biblical “law” is a general term that can refer to or include underlying principles of the Mosaic laws such as penalties for breaking the laws and related issues]) The opposite would mean that if you ARE NOT LED by the Holy Spirit (or don’t even have it), YOU ARE UNDER THE LAW! This seems to show that it is more likely that the majority of Old Testament laws (those not specifically itemized by the Apostles as nullified) are still in force, never having been abolished, and need to be obeyed by Christians.

    Many verses written in the original Greek and Hebrew are worded in an extremely concise, abbreviated, grossly understated way. For example, in Genesis the sun is described as a “great light.” That “great light” is about 800,000 miles in diameter and generates multimillion degree temperatures. “Under the law” generally can only mean or include “under the penalty of the law” if you closely analyze the context. Otherwise the verse makes no sense. Galatians 5:18, turned around, says that you are under the law if you are not led by the Spirit (Holy Spirit.) This shows that the law (various tithes, festivals, dietary laws primarily) are still in full force. Are you going to tell me that Christians led by the Holy Spirit are not, in this verse, required to obey the law, (not under the law [more correctly, not under the penalty {potentially death} of the law]), while when they are under the law (more correctly, under the penalty of the law) they need to obey the law? In other words, are you going to tell me that Holy Spirit led, righteous Christians no longer need to obey the law when everyone else has to obey the law, including the worst sinners? That makes no sense at all. Logically “under the law” in Galatians 5:18 simply means “under the penalty of the law” strongly implying righteous Christians still need to obey the law.

    • I really do believe that we need to be extremely cautious when trying to understand controversial verses translated in to the English language. Believe it or not, it seems quite true that not just a few, but the majority of English translated Bibles were translated from the Greek and Hebrew by anti-Mosaic law translators, believing that we no longer need to obey most of the Old Testament laws. To help prove my point, just look at what biased translators ADDED at the end of Mark 7:19: “In saying this, Jesus declared all foods clean.” That added, incredibly arrogant comment IS NOT in the original Greek and is not in the more conservative, literal translations such as the King James Bible. I consider that remark almost unforgiveable, deceiving so many trusting readers.

      You can believe that, but no biblical scholar has said this – I have only heard it from people who want to ignore what God has said concerning no longer being under the Law.
      Mark 7:19 is in EVERY translation. The parentheses are in only a few translations to add clarity, to indicate the statement was not made by Jesus, but by Mark. It is not because the verses are not present.

      The KJV mistranslated Katharizo as “purging”. The better translation is “cleansing” or “make clean”.

      Don’t you agree that when you have 60 verses that say one thing and 9 verses that SEEM to say the opposite, it is just good common sense to go with what the 60 verses say instead of stubbornly clinging to what the other 9 verses initially appear to say? I noticed that you conveniently ignored answering my question about remembering what Paul said in Romans 2:13: “for not the hearers of the law are just in the sight of God, but the DOERS of the law will be justified.” If you will go to the trouble of counting the pro-law verses in the New Testament versus the abolished law verses, you should find that the pro-law verses significantly outnumber the other verses. You said,

      I think its critical to read all scripture in harmony with each other, rather than to ignore what Scripture states – otherwise you can make Scripture say what you want, rather than what God said.

      “Paul obviously did not peach the need to follow the Law, OTHERWISE he (and the church in Jerusalem) would have compelled Titus to be circumcised. But we see in Galatians 2: 3 “But not even Titus, who was with me, though he was a Greek, was compelled to be circumcised. ” I don’t know why you brought up circumcision here because that very small part of the Mosaic laws was considered abolished in what was recorded in the book of Acts. Basically only circumcision and the animal and grain sacrifices (discussed in Hebrews) were specifically pointed out as abolished by the Apostles. Tithing is a Mosaic law, commanded later even by Jesus Himself: Matthew 23:23 “…… You SHOULD TITHE, yes, but do not neglect the more important things.” — New Living Translation. Are you going to throw that verse out the window?

      You can not have it both ways – either you are to follow the Mosaic Law (ALL of it), or you are not. You are picking and choosing which laws to follow…. Peter and the church at Jerusalem specifically said the Gentile believers in Christ did not need to follow the Law.

      Acts 15:1-11

      1 And certain men which came down from Judaea taught the brethren, and said, Except ye be circumcised after the manner of Moses, ye cannot be saved. 2 When therefore Paul and Barnabas had no small dissension and disputation with them, they determined that Paul and Barnabas, and certain other of them, should go up to Jerusalem unto the apostles and elders about this question.
      3 And being brought on their way by the church, they passed through Phenice and Samaria, declaring the conversion of the Gentiles: and they caused great joy unto all the brethren.
      4 And when they were come to Jerusalem, they were received of the church, and of the apostles and elders, and they declared all things that God had done with them.
      5 But there rose up certain of the sect of the Pharisees which believed, saying, That it was needful to circumcise them, and to command them to keep the law of Moses. 6 And the apostles and elders came together for to consider of this matter.
      7 And when there had been much disputing, Peter rose up, and said unto them, Men and brethren, ye know how that a good while ago God made choice among us, that the Gentiles by my mouth should hear the word of the gospel, and believe.
      8 And God, which knoweth the hearts, bare them witness, giving them the Holy Ghost, even as he did unto us;
      9 And put no difference between us and them, purifying their hearts by faith.
      10 Now therefore why tempt ye God, to put a yoke upon the neck of the disciples, which neither our fathers nor we were able to bear?
      11 But we believe that through the grace of the LORD Jesus Christ we shall be saved, even as they.

      Acts 15:28-29

      28 For it seemed good to the Holy Ghost, and to us, to lay upon you no greater burden than these necessary things;
      29 That ye abstain from meats offered to idols, and from blood, and from things strangled, and from fornication: from which if ye keep yourselves, ye shall do well. Fare ye well.

      There were only a few things which believers are commanded to do. But believers are NOT required to follow the Mosaic Law.

      I brought up circumcision because it was part of the Mosaic Law – which has been done away with.

      Yes, tithing IS a Mosaic Law – one which Jesus followed, I am sure. But Matthew 23:23 was BEFORE Christ died and rose again. Once the blood of Christ paid for our sins, those who accepted it moved from being without law (Gentiles) or under the Mosaic Law (Jews) to being under the Law of the Spirit of Jesus Christ. At that point, we are no longer required to tithe. The new rule is to give sacrificially and with a joyful heart. (2 Corinthians 9:6-7).

      Galatians 5:18: “But IF (did you just see that HUGE IF word?) you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the law.” (not under the penalty of the law if you break it [Biblical “law” is a general term that can refer to or include underlying principles of the Mosaic laws such as penalties for breaking the laws and related issues]) The opposite would mean that if you ARE NOT LED by the Holy Spirit (or don’t even have it), YOU ARE UNDER THE LAW! This seems to show that it is more likely that the majority of Old Testament laws (those not specifically itemized by the Apostles as nullified) are still in force, never having been abolished, and need to be obeyed by Christians.

      Many verses written in the original Greek and Hebrew are worded in an extremely concise, abbreviated, grossly understated way. For example, in Genesis the sun is described as a “great light.” That “great light” is about 800,000 miles in diameter and generates multimillion degree temperatures. “Under the law” generally can only mean or include “under the penalty of the law” if you closely analyze the context. Otherwise the verse makes no sense. Galatians 5:18, turned around, says that you are under the law if you are not led by the Spirit (Holy Spirit.) This shows that the law (various tithes, festivals, dietary laws primarily) are still in full force. Are you going to tell me that Christians led by the Holy Spirit are not, in this verse, required to obey the law, (not under the law [more correctly, not under the penalty {potentially death} of the law]), while when they are under the law (more correctly, under the penalty of the law) they need to obey the law? In other words, are you going to tell me that Holy Spirit led, righteous Christians no longer need to obey the law when everyone else has to obey the law, including the worst sinners? That makes no sense at all. Logically “under the law” in Galatians 5:18 simply means “under the penalty of the law” strongly implying righteous Christians still need to obey the law.

      Actually, NO, the opposite of being led by the Spirit is NOT being under the law. Gentiles were never under the Law. But Paul said if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the Law.

      You are so confused by what Scripture states. No where does Paul speak of “penalty of law.”
      Paul said in Galatians 3:23-25

      23 But before faith came, we were kept in custody under the law, being shut up to the faith which was later to be revealed. 24 Therefore the Law has become our tutor to lead us to Christ, so that we may be justified by faith. 25 But now that faith has come, we are no longer under a [ai]tutor.

      Paul said in Galatians 5:1, speaking about following the Law:

      1 It was for freedom that Christ set us free; therefore keep standing firm and do not be subject again to a yoke of slavery.

      Paul said HE is not under the Law.

      1 Corinthians 9:20

      To the Jews I became as a Jew, so that I might win Jews; to those who are underthe Law, as under the Law though not being myself under the Law, so that I might win those who are under the Law;

      But be that as it may, being Spirit led means having the Holy Spirit, which comes when someone accepts Christ as savior. So believers are not under the Law and we have no need to obey the laws which were not specifically mentioned to be followed by the church of Jerusalem in Acts 15. To teach otherwise is to go against what the Bible teaches.

  5. Possible meanings of the pivotally important conjunction “and” in Acts 15 can refute what you said, which I will discuss tomorrow. I am typing this late Tuesday night. Also, do you believe that the words “In saying this, Jesus declared all foods clean” at the end of Mark 7:19, are really in the original Greek? I appreciate your continued patient, respectful politeness in this educational debate. I will try to be just as polite.

    • I really do not understand how you could parse Acts 15:27-29 in any way other than to understand that only certain things were denied to the believers:

      27 “Therefore we have sent Judas and Silas, who themselves will also report the same things by word of mouth. 28 “For it seemed good to the Holy Spirit and to us to lay upon you no greater burden than these essentials : 29 that you abstain from things sacrificed to idols and from blood and from things strangled and from fornication ; if you keep yourselves free from such things, you will do well. Farewell.”

      The NASB translates the end of Mark 7:19 as “Thus He declared all foods clean”. The NIV translates it as, “In saying this, Jesus declared all foods “clean.”. The KJV translates it as “purging all meats”. But the words are transliterated as “Katharizo Pas Broma.” The literal translation is “cleansing all food,” although it could also be translated “making all food clean” or “declaring all food clean”. And yes, I believe they were in the original Greek.

      This is essentially the same thing Paul said in Romans 14:20,

      20 Do not tear down the work of God for the sake of food. All things indeed are clean, but they are evil for the man who eats and gives offense.

      I might grow frustrated, and if I do or if I am short of terse, please forgive me.

  6. You just made a humongus mistake. The phrase “In saying this, Jesus declared all foods clean” at the end of Mark 7:19 is not, is not, is not in the original Greek. I have my own Hebrew-Greek-English Interlinear Bible by Jay P. Green, I looked it up and it is not, is not, is not there! Go buy one if you don’t have one and look it up, or research the internet for it. The fact that it is not there has HUGE implications, such as the fact that many English translations were written by biased, anti-Mosaic law translators believing most of the Old Testament laws have been nullified. I will finish this latest comment later today.

  7. No, no, you need instead to look up Mark 7:19-20 interlinearly between the Greek and English which is a better way to research this. I am not necessarily trying to embarass you, I just want you and hopefully a lot of other people to know the real truth. I looked up each of the sources you listed, and none of them have any Greek words translated into “In saying this, Jesus declared all foods clean” or “Thus He declared all foods clean.” http://nltlinear.comMark.7.19/linear does SNEAK the English words (ADDED by a translator) “He declared that is acceptable in God’s eyes” between some other original Greek words. The phrase “Thus He declared all foods clean” is usually in parenthesis showing that it is not in the original Greek and was ADDED, ADDED, ADDED!! It is artificial and made up entirely by these prejudiced translators most people just love to trust. When you look up both verses 19 and 20 in Mark 7 you will be able to see anything in the original Greek between verses 19 and 20, if it really is there, which it is not. A fabulous site I regularly use is studybible.info.

    • You are mistaken to think the parenthesis show that the text was added to the original Greek. The parentheses show that this statement was made by Mark rather than Jesus – its a common English style thing to do.

      http://biblos.com/mark/7-19.htm shows the words “katharizōn panta ta brōmata” are in the original text.

      Strong’s Transliteration Greek English Morphology
      3754 [e] hoti ὅτι because Conj
      3756 [e] ouk οὐκ not Adv
      1531 [e] eisporeuetai εἰσπορεύεται it enters V-PIM/P-3S
      846 [e] autou αὐτοῦ of him PPro-GM3S
      1519 [e] eis εἰς into Prep
      3588 [e] tēn τὴν the Art-AFS
      2588 [e] kardian καρδίαν heart, N-AFS
      235 [e] all’ ἀλλ’ but Conj
      1519 [e] eis εἰς into Prep
      3588 [e] tēn τὴν the Art-AFS
      2836 [e] koilian κοιλίαν belly, N-AFS
      2532 [e] kai καὶ and Conj
      1519 [e] eis εἰς into Prep
      3588 [e] ton τὸν the Art-AMS
      856 [e] aphedrōna ἀφεδρῶνα draught N-AMS
      1607 [e] ekporeuetai ἐκπορεύεται goes out. V-PIM/P-3S
      2511 [e] katharizōn καθαρίζων purifying V-PPA-NMS
      3956 [e] panta πάντα all Adj-ANP
      3588 [e] ta τὰ the Art-ANP
      1033 [e] brōmata βρώματα food. N-ANP

      WE CAN SEE MULTIPLE families of text which have it present.

      ΚΑΤΑ ΜΑΡΚΟΝ 7:19 Greek NT: Westcott/Hort with Diacritics
      ὅτι οὐκ εἰσπορεύεται αὐτοῦ εἰς τὴν καρδίαν ἀλλ’ εἰς τὴν κοιλίαν καὶ εἰς τὸν ἀφεδρῶνα ἐκπορεύεται. καθαρίζων πάντα τὰ βρώματα;
      ΚΑΤΑ ΜΑΡΚΟΝ 7:19 Greek NT: Greek Orthodox Church
      ὅτι οὐκ εἰσπορεύεται αὐτοῦ εἰς τὴν καρδίαν, ἀλλὰ εἰς τὴν κοιλίαν, καὶ εἰς τὸν ἀφεδρῶνα ἐκπορεύεται, καθαρίζον πάντα τὰ βρώματα.

      ΚΑΤΑ ΜΑΡΚΟΝ 7:19 Greek NT: Tischendorf 8th Ed. with Diacritics
      ὅτι οὐκ εἰσπορεύεται αὐτοῦ εἰς τὴν καρδίαν ἀλλ’ εἰς τὴν κοιλίαν, καὶ εἰς τὸν ἀφεδρῶνα ἐκπορεύεται, καθαρίζων πάντα τὰ βρώματα;

      ΚΑΤΑ ΜΑΡΚΟΝ 7:19 Greek NT: Stephanus Textus Receptus (1550, with accents)
      ὅτι οὐκ εἰσπορεύεται αὐτοῦ εἰς τὴν καρδίαν ἀλλ’ εἰς τὴν κοιλίαν καὶ εἰς τὸν ἀφεδρῶνα ἐκπορεύεται καθαρίζον πάντα τὰ βρώματα

      ΚΑΤΑ ΜΑΡΚΟΝ 7:19 Greek NT: Byzantine/Majority Text (2000)
      οτι ουκ εισπορευεται αυτου εις την καρδιαν αλλ εις την κοιλιαν και εις τον αφεδρωνα εκπορευεται καθαριζον παντα τα βρωματα

      ΚΑΤΑ ΜΑΡΚΟΝ 7:19 Greek NT: Textus Receptus (1894)
      οτι ουκ εισπορευεται αυτου εις την καρδιαν αλλ εις την κοιλιαν και εις τον αφεδρωνα εκπορευεται καθαριζον παντα τα βρωματα

      Mark 7:19 Greek Study Bible (Apostolic / Interlinear)
      ὅτι οὐκ εἰσπορεύεται αὐτοῦ εἰς τὴν καρδίαν ἀλλ’ εἰς τὴν κοιλίαν καὶ εἰς τὸν ἀφεδρῶνα ἐκπορεύεται. καθαρίζων πάντα τὰ βρώματα;

      KJV with Strong’s
      Because it entereth not into his heart but into the belly and goeth out into the draught purging all meats

      Even the KJV has it, but translates the word for purifying as purging. The same word translated as purify also means “make clean” or “declare clean” – look at the Strong’s definition for 2511.

      2511. katharizó

      katharizó: to cleanse
      Original Word: καθαρίζω
      Part of Speech: Verb
      Transliteration: katharizó
      Phonetic Spelling: (kath-ar-id’-zo)
      Short Definition: I make clean
      Definition: I cleanse, make clean, literally, ceremonially, or spiritually, according to context.

      Cognate: 2511 katharízō – make pure (“clean”), removing all admixture (intermingling of filth). See 2513 (katharos).

      Word Origin
      from katharos
      Definition
      to cleanse
      NASB Word Usage
      clean (3), cleanse (5), cleansed (16), cleanses (1), cleansing (1), declared…clean (1), make…clean (3), purify (1).

      Even the Morphological Greek New Testament has it (http://www.blueletterbible.org/Bible.cfm?b=Mar&c=7&t=MGNT#19):

      ὅτι οὐκ εἰσπορεύεται αὐτοῦ εἰς τὴν καρδίαν ἀλλ’ εἰς τὴν κοιλίαν καὶ εἰς τὸν ἀφεδρῶνα ἐκπορεύεται καθαρίζων πάντα τὰ βρώματα

      Perhaps the best evidence is found here, which has 5 different Greek texts:
      http://www.greeknewtestament.com/B41C007.htm#V19

  8. Yes, I agree with the following which you said:

    “KJV with Strong’s
    Because it entereth not into his heart but into the belly and goeth out into the draught purging all meats.” (In saying this Jesus declared all foods clean.) “20 And He said, That which cometh out of the man, that defileth the man.”
    I added verse 20 and put the translator added phrase in parenthesis in also immediately before verse 20. The phrase in parenthesis is not in the more accurate, literal KJV, exeGeses Companion Bible, Analytical Literal Translation, Young’s Literal Translation, A Conservative Version Interlinear, Greens Literal Translation, Concordant Literal Versiion, etc. But the above phrase in parenthesis is added to a large number of English translations, which is what I am criticizing. You said,

    “You are mistaken to think the parenthesis show that the text was added to the original Greek. The parentheses show that this statement was made by Mark rather than Jesus – its a common English style thing to do.”
    If what you just said is true, then I have been misled by what I have read. I don’t think you are right, though because the above highly respected translations DO NOT have the disputed phrase. I just wanted to mention the disputed phrase to show how treacherous some English verses can be when trying to understand them, which are often written by biased translators. I just recently realized that the added phrase in itself adds no support (if the reader is able to discern the true context of verses 19 and 20) at all to the incorrect belief many Mosaic laws, such as the dietary laws, have been nullified. The subject content of Mark 7 is the external washing of hands and the man made ceremonial practice of washing hands before eating, not which foods are Biblically forbidden to eat.
    Moving on, how do you explain Romans 2:13? It reads, “for not the hearers of the law are just in the sight of God, but the doers of the law will be justified.” Does that not severely damage your belief that the tithing, festival, and protective dietary laws need not be obeyed by Christians?
    Unless you are a high stakes gambler, you cannot securely use Acts 15 to support the idea that many Mosaic laws have been abolished. Acts 15:5,24: “…….. the sect of the Pharisees which believed, saying, ‘That it was needful to circumcise them, AND to command them (them is a word added by translators) to keep the law of Moses.’ 24 Forasmuch as we have heard, that certain which went out from us have troubled you with words, subverting your souls, saying, you must be circumcised, AND keep the law: to whom we gave no such commandment:” The over all context here is that the Apostles never sanctioned or required circumcision for salvation. In verse 5 “…….. That it was needful to circumcise them AND to command them (them is a word added by translators) to keep the law of Moses,” the original Greek word for AND is te, Strong’s number 5037, which can be translated as “whether” or “then,” two alternate definitions of te. When you remove the artificially added “them” the verse can be translated as “…….. That it was needful to circumcise them “whether” or “then” to command to keep the law of Moses,” which radically changes what this verse is saying. Remember, anti-Old Testament leaning translators, when they can, jump at the opportunity to insert their theological bias into any verse. Also keep in mind that there are no commas in the Greek language. Translators add them where ever they want them. In verse 24, the Greek word for “and” is kai, Strong’s number 2532, usually translated as “and.” That pivotally important little conjunction, if it was not accurately translated, significantly weakens the already poor arguments of those preaching the abolition of the Mosaic laws. The conservative King James Version of the Bible translates kai in other verses in the New Testament as “even” 108 times, “then” 20 times, and “so” 18 times. Kai has also been translated as “so then, certainly, just, now, well, while, for, if, that, therefore, when.” Kai can mean “as a consequence or result of an action taken” in which verse 24 could very well mean that circumcision would merely be an act or consequence of keeping the law of Moses, and Mosaic law observance in general was not a separate command. In such a situation keeping the other laws of Moses is not an issue. Verse 24: “…….. subverting your souls, saying, you must be circumcised so then or certainly or now or well or while or for or if or that or therefore or when keep the law: to whom we gave no such commandment” are other possible translations. The Apostles concluded that it would be too much of a burden to impose circumcision on Christians. Please go to gnmagazine.org/booklets/NC/circumcision.htm and read at least the first 8 paragraphs to better understand this verse. Another helpful site to visit is ucg.org/papers/covenants.pdf.

    • Wolfgang,

      The KVJ version of Mark 7:19 DOES have the text you are saying has been added. It has simply been translated differntly. The KJV has it translated as: “purging all meats.” Anyone who thinks the KJV does not have that text is very mistaken.

      Take a look at the different translations of this text (http://www.biblestudytools.com/mark/7-19-compare.html ):

      Mark 7:19 ASV
      because it goeth not into his heart, but into his belly, and goeth out into the draught? [This he said], making all meats clean.

      Mark 7:19 KJV
      Because it entereth not into his heart, but into the belly, and goeth out into the draught, purging all meats?

      Mark 7:19 NAS
      because it does not go into his heart, but into his stomach, and is eliminated ?” (Thus He declared all foods clean.)

      Mark 7:19 NIV
      For it doesn’t go into his heart but into his stomach, and then out of his body.” (In saying this, Jesus declared all foods “clean.”)

      Mark 7:19 BBE
      Because it goes not into the heart but into the stomach, and goes out with the waste? He said this, making all food clean.

      Mark 7:19 CJB
      For it doesn’t go into his heart but into his stomach, and it passes out into the latrine.” (Thus he declared all foods ritually clean.)

      Mark 7:19 RHE
      Because it entereth not into his heart but goeth into his belly and goeth out into the privy, purging all meats?

      Mark 7:19 ESV
      since it enters not his heart but his stomach, and is expelled?” (Thus he declared all foods clean.)

      Mark 7:19 GW
      It doesn’t go into his thoughts but into his stomach and then into a toilet.” (By saying this, Jesus declared all foods acceptable.)

      Mark 7:19 GNT
      because it does not go into your heart but into your stomach and then goes on out of the body.” (In saying this, Jesus declared that all foods are fit to be eaten.)

      Mark 7:19 HNV
      because it doesn’t go into his heart, but into his belly, and into the latrine, thus making all foods clean?”

      Mark 7:19 CSB
      For it doesn’t go into his heart but into the stomach and is eliminated.” (As a result, He made all foods clean.)

      Mark 7:19 LEB
      For it does not enter into his heart but into his stomach, and goes out into the latrine”–[thus] declaring all foods clean.

      Mark 7:19 NCV
      It does not go into the mind, but into the stomach. Then it goes out of the body.” (When Jesus said this, he meant that no longer was any food unclean for people to eat.)

      Mark 7:19 NIRV
      It doesn’t go into the heart. It goes into the stomach. Then it goes out of the body.” In saying this, Jesus was calling all foods “clean.”

      Mark 7:19 NKJV
      because it does not enter his heart but his stomach, and is eliminated, thus purifying all foods?”

      Mark 7:19 NLT
      Food doesn’t come in contact with your heart, but only passes through the stomach and then comes out again.” (By saying this, he showed that every kind of food is acceptable.)

      Mark 7:19 NRS
      since it enters, not the heart but the stomach, and goes out into the sewer?” (Thus he declared all foods clean.)

      Mark 7:19 RSV
      since it enters, not his heart but his stomach, and so passes on?” (Thus he declared all foods clean.)

      Mark 7:19 DBY
      because it does not enter into his heart but into his belly, and goes out into the draught, purging all meats?

      Mark 7:19 MSG
      It doesn’t enter your heart but your stomach, works its way through the intestines, and is finally flushed.” (That took care of dietary quibbling; Jesus was saying that all foods are fit to eat.)

      Mark 7:19 WBT
      Because it entereth not into his heart, but into the belly, and goeth out into the draught, purging all kinds of food.

      Mark 7:19 TMB
      because it entereth not into his heart, but into the belly and goeth out into the drain, thereby purging all meats?”

      Mark 7:19 TNIV
      For it doesn’t go into your heart but into your stomach, and then out of your body.” (In saying this, Jesus declared all foods clean.)

      Mark 7:19 WNT
      because it does not go into his heart, but into his stomach, and passes away ejected from him?” By these words Jesus pronounced all kinds of food clean.

      Mark 7:19 WEB
      because it doesn’t go into his heart, but into his belly, and into the latrine, thus making all foods clean?”

      Mark 7:19 WYC
      for it hath not entered into his heart, but into the womb, and beneath it goeth out, purging all meats.

      Mark 7:19 YLT
      because it doth not enter into his heart, but into the belly, and into the drain it doth go out, purifying all the meats.’

      There are basically a few different ways this text has been translated:

      KVJ, DBY, RHE, WBT, TMB, WYC: “purging all meats”
      YLT: “purifying all the meats”
      BBE, WEB: “thus making all foods clean”
      WBT: “purging all kinds of food”
      ASV, HNV: “making all meats clean”
      NASB, NIV, ESV, NRS, RSV, : “Thus he declared all foods clean”
      CJB: “Thus he declared all foods ritually clean”
      GW: “By saying this, Jesus declared all foods acceptable”
      NLT: “By saying this, he showed that every kind of food is acceptable”
      NIRV, TNIV: “In saying this, Jesus was calling all foods “clean.””
      GNT: “In saying this, Jesus declared that all foods are fit to be eaten”
      CSB: “As a result, He made all foods clean.”
      NCV: “When Jesus said this, he meant that no longer was any food unclean for people to eat.”
      NKJV: “thus purifying all foods”
      WNT: “By these words Jesus pronounced all kinds of food clean.”

      This in turn breaks down to three four different meanings:
      “purging all food”
      “purifying all food”
      “making all food clean”
      “declaring all food clean”

      This tells me we need to look at the Greek word being translated as “purging”, “purifying”, “making clean”, “declaring clean”. We have already done this once, but for completeness, I will repeat:

      Strong’s Number: 2511
      Original Word Word Origin
      kaqarizo from (2513)
      Transliterated Word TDNT Entry
      Katharizo 3:413,381
      Phonetic Spelling Parts of Speech
      kath-ar-id’-zo Verb
      Definition
      to make clean, cleanse
      from physical stains and dirt
      utensils, food
      a leper, to cleanse by curing
      to remove by cleansing
      in a moral sense
      to free from defilement of sin and from faults
      to purify from wickedness
      to free from guilt of sin, to purify
      to consecrate by cleansing or purifying
      to consecrate, dedicate
      to pronounce clean in a levitical sense

      NAS Word Usage – Total: 31
      clean 3, cleanse 5, cleansed 16, cleanses 1, cleansing 1, declared…clean 1, make…clean 3, purify 1

      The KJV uses “purge”, which today makes one think of having to remove.But if you look at the actual dictionary defintiion of “purge”, you will see it means to clean. http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/purge

      1purge verb \ˈpərj\
      purgedpurg·ing

      Definition of PURGE

      transitive verb
      1
      a : to clear of guilt
      b : to free from moral or ceremonial defilement
      2
      a : to cause evacuation from (as the bowels)
      b (1) : to make free of something unwanted (2) : to free (as a boiler) of sediment or relieve (as a steam pipe) of trapped air by bleeding
      c (1) : to rid (as a nation or party) by a purge (2) : to get rid of

      The word means to MAKE CLEAN, to PURIFY.

      I think the best translation is what the NKJV has: “purifying all foods,” or what the NASB has: “declared all food clean.”

    • I just recently realized that the added phrase in itself adds no support (if the reader is able to discern the true context of verses 19 and 20) at all to the incorrect belief many Mosaic laws, such as the dietary laws, have been nullified. The subject content of Mark 7 is the external washing of hands and the man made ceremonial practice of washing hands before eating, not which foods are Biblically forbidden to eat.

      I have written on this before. But I will address it here as well.

      Yes, the conversation in Mark 7 began by discussing the traditions of the elders of washing hands before eating, but it ended discussing the things that actually make a man unclean, and it was NOT anything that enters the body from outside (including food). Mark 7 was not simply about ritualistic hand-washing, or any other hedge-laws enacted by the rabbis. It is also about what really makes one clean or unclean. Jesus was clear that things that enter our bodies from the outside, including food, do not make us unclean. But it is our heart-attitudes, what is inside us, that makes us unclean.

    • Wolfgang,

      You wrote:

      Moving on, how do you explain Romans 2:13? It reads, “for not the hearers of the law are just in the sight of God, but the doers of the law will be justified.” Does that not severely damage your belief that the tithing, festival, and protective dietary laws need not be obeyed by Christians?

      Please read Romans 2 along with Romans 3 before thinking that Paul is saying that DOING the law will cause people to be called righteous.
      Take a look at Romans 3:20

      Therefore no one will be declared righteous in his sight by observing the law; rather, through the law we become conscious of sin.

      In Romans 3:20, Paul flat out contradicts any interpretation of Romans 2:13 which might indicate one is declared righteous by doing the law.
      This is repeated in Romans 9:31

      but Israel, who pursued a law of righteousness, has not attained it.

      Galatians 3:11

      Clearly no one is justified before God by the law, because, “The righteous will live by faith.”

      In fact, the Law was made for the unrighteous.
      1 Timothy 1:8-10

      8 We know that the law is good if one uses it properly. 9 We also know that law[a] is made not for the righteous but for lawbreakers and rebels, the ungodly and sinful, the unholy and irreligious; for those who kill their fathers or mothers, for murderers, 10 for adulterers and perverts, for slave traders and liars and perjurers—and for whatever else is contrary to the sound doctrine

      So no, Romans 2:13 does not tell us we must continue to tithe or follow the festivals and dietary laws.

    • Wolfgang,

      Unless you are a high stakes gambler, you cannot securely use Acts 15 to support the idea that many Mosaic laws have been abolished. Acts 15:5,24: “…….. the sect of the Pharisees which believed, saying, ‘That it was needful to circumcise them, AND to command them (them is a word added by translators) to keep the law of Moses.’ 24 Forasmuch as we have heard, that certain which went out from us have troubled you with words, subverting your souls, saying, you must be circumcised, AND keep the law: to whom we gave no such commandment:” The over all context here is that the Apostles never sanctioned or required circumcision for salvation. In verse 5 “…….. That it was needful to circumcise them AND to command them (them is a word added by translators) to keep the law of Moses,” the original Greek word for AND is te, Strong’s number 5037, which can be translated as “whether” or “then,” two alternate definitions of te. When you remove the artificially added “them” the verse can be translated as “…….. That it was needful to circumcise them “whether” or “then” to command to keep the law of Moses,” which radically changes what this verse is saying.

      Again, you and I disagree. ‘Te’ in Acts 15:5 is most often translated as ‘and’. It is adjunctive – additive.

      The Strongs shows

      te: and (denotes addition or connection)
      Original Word: τέ
      Part of Speech: Particle, Disjunctive Particle
      Transliteration: te
      Phonetic Spelling: (teh)
      Short Definition: and, both
      Definition: and, both.

      5037 té (a conjunction) – “and both” (“both and”). 5037 /té (“and both”) occurs 204 times in the NT and unfortunately is often not translated.

      Even if you try to translate it as something other than ‘and’, it ADDS the two things together. It essentially means ‘both’, ‘not only… but also’. That being the case, both circumcise and keep the law.

      Young’s Literal translation of Acts 15:5 makes the most sense about how this should be read:
      Acts 15:5 YLT

      and there rose up certain of those of the sect of the Pharisees who believed, saying — `It behoveth to circumcise them, to command them also to keep the law of Moses.’

      It is obvious to anyone reading the text that the intent of the Pharisees was to make Gentile believers have to follow the Law to be saved – this is what was said in verse 1.

      Your understanding of what was intended in verse 24 is most certainly not mine.
      I think its clear in verse 1 that the Pharisees wanted people be circumcised in accordance with the Law to be saved. The verses 5 and 24 are summarizing the argument – that they believed people needed to follow the Law and be circumcised to be saved. And that is the argument which the Holy Spirit, elders, apostles, and the whole church destroyed with what they commanded believers: “abstain from meats offered to idols, and from blood, and from things strangled, and from fornication. ” No believer needed to do anything other than what they specified.

  9. Since Paul himself wrote Romans 2:13, 3:20, and Galatians 3:11, don’t you think it is reasonable to assume that he was not contradicting himself? Don’t you also think it is very reasonable to assume (in fact the only conclusion possible if he was not contradicting himself) that in Romans 3:20 and Galatians 3:11 he simply meant that righteousness cannot be attained by SOLELY, WITHOUT FAITH, observing the law? I think that is the only logical conclusion you can come to. These verses were addressed also to hard core, difficult to convince Jews, too, remember? None of these verses actually say that Christians no longer need to obey the law.
    What is your response to my comment on Acts 15?

    • I dont think there IS contradiction in Romans 2:3, 2:13, 3:20, and Galatians 3:11.

      And NO. I do not believe that the way to harmonize Romans 3:20 and Galatians 3:11 is to say you need the Law to be righteous.

      I think that righteousness is obtained through faith in Christ. This is CHRIST’s righteousness in us that works itself out in our actions. IF we love God and have faith in Christ, then that will manifest itself in our actions.
      Obviously Righteousness does NOT come from the Law:
      Galatians 2:21

      I do not nullify the grace of God, for if righteousness comes through the Law, then Christ died needlessly.”

      People are not justified from their sins by the Law:
      Galatians 3:11

      Now that no one is justified by the Law before God is evident; for, “ THE RIGHTEOUS MAN SHALL LIVE BY FAITH.”

      People do not gain life through the Law, and more than that, people are NOT made righteous based upon law:
      Galatians 3:21

      Is the Law then contrary to the promises of God? May it never be! For if a law had been given which was able to impart life, then righteousness would indeed have been based on law.

      Indeed, righteousness from GOD is based on faith:
      Philippians 3:9

      and may be found in Him, not having a righteousness of my own derived from the Law, but that which is through faith in Christ, the righteousness which comes from God on the basis of faith,

      Now, how can we be righteous and it NOT come from the Law?

      It coms by faith in Christ, not by following the Law. In fact, Gentiles become righteous WITHOUT the Law, yet those who had the Law did not achieve righteousness.
      Romans 9:30-32

      30 What shall we say then? That Gentiles, who did not pursue righteousness, attained righteousness, even the righteousness which is faith; 31 but Israel, pursuing a law of righteousness, did not arrive at that law. 32 Why? Because they did not pursue it by faith, but as though it were by works. They stumbled over the stumbling stone

      We are GIFTED righteousness by GOD through faith in Christ.
      Romans 5:17

      For if by the transgression of the one, death reigned through the one, much more those who receive the abundance of grace and of the gift of righteousness will reign in life through the One, Jesus Christ.

      Romans 10:9-10 tells us belief in Christ’s atonement results in righteousness.

      9 that if you confess with your mouth Jesus as Lord, and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved; 10 for with the heart a person believes, resulting in righteousness, and with the mouth he confesses, resulting in salvation.

      We know no one is declared righteous by following the Law.
      Romans 3:20

      Therefore no one will be declared righteous in his sight by observing the law; rather, through the law we become conscious of sin.

      Once we have the righteousness of God that comes through faith in Christ, then we are declared righteous.

  10. Getting back briefly to the doers and hearers of the law, Romans 2:13 and James 1:22 declare that the doers are righteous, and Romans 3:20 and Galatians 3:11 basically say that faith, not law observance, leads to righteousness. According to your abolished law theology, these 2 verses strongly contradict the latter 2 verses. Are you saying that Paul contradicted James and even himself? For the benefit of other readers I need initially only a simple yes or no answer, then you can explain yourself.
    Concerning Acts 15:27-29 you said:

    I really do not understand how you could parse Acts 15:27-29 in any way other than to understand that only certain things were denied to the believers:

    27 “Therefore we have sent Judas and Silas, who themselves will also report the same things by word of mouth. 28 “For it seemed good to the Holy Spirit and to us to lay upon you no greater burden than these essentials : 29 that you abstain from things sacrificed to idols and from blood and from things strangled and from fornication; if you keep yourself free from such things, you do well. Farewell.”
    You also said:
    “Your understanding of what was intended in verse 24 is most certainly not mine.
    I think its clear in verse 1 that the Pharisees wanted people be circumcised in accordance with the Law to be saved. The verses 5 and 24 are summarizing the argument – that they believed people needed to follow the Law and be circumcised to be saved. And that is the argument which the Holy Spirit, elders, apostles, and the whole church destroyed with what they commanded believers: “abstain from meats offered to idols, and from blood, and from things strangled, and from fornication. ” No believer needed to do anything other than what they specified.” That is the end of your quotation.

    Yes, I agree that the Apostles obviously did abolish circumcision, but not the rest of the Mosaic laws. To refute your conclusion I will quote part of the page VERSES MAINSTREAMERS USE appearing in the site TithingHelps.com:

    “Acts 15:19,20,28,29: “Therefore I judge that we should not trouble those from among the Gentiles who are turning to God, 20 but that we write to them to abstain from things polluted by idols, from sexual immorality, from things strangled, and from blood. ……. 28 For it seemed good to the Holy Spirit, and to us, to lay upon you no greater burden than these necessary things: 29 that you abstain from things offered to idols, from blood, from things strangled, and from sexual immorality …….” When the book of Acts was written the dominant Greek and Roman cultures at that time were centered around idol worship and even had many local pagan temples. Christian Gentiles assembled, literally with the sizable Jewish community, in the synagogues each Saturday. Bibles were extremely expensive at the time since Scrolls were hand written, and very few people had them except the very rich. Synagogue services were the only opportunity most Gentile Christians had to hear the Scriptures and learn Christianity since new Christian congregations had not yet been established in many areas. The Jews welcomed the new people, but they needed to be assured that the Gentiles had genuinely forsaken any form of idolatry. The apostles therefore required the Gentile believers, to get along with the Jews, to accept certain rules (generally man made rules or customs that were not necessarily always required for salvation) showing that they had rejected idolatrous practices: 1) they should not become involved in any ritual involving animal strangulation, 2) they should not participate in any ceremony misusing blood in sacrifices, 3) they should not become involved in any meal associated with idol worship, and 4) they should completely avoid any contact or dealings with temple prostitutes. Verse 21: “For Moses has had throughout many generations those who preach him in every city, being read in the synagogues every Sabbath.” This last verse shows that the apostles were motivated to help make the Jews accept the new Christian converts into the synagogues to regularly hear and learn what Moses was recorded to have said. If Acts 15:20,29 is a complete, exhaustive list of laws for Christians to obey, Gentile believers can now murder, cheat, lie, have sex with animals, have incestuous sex with the closest relatives, eat an animal torn by a wild animal, consult wizards, eat trichinosis infected pork and other toxic, scavenger meat, forget about tithing which often saves the helpless hungry from starving to death, curse their parents, covet, divorce for frivolous reasons and marry someone else, etc. which of course is a ridiculous conclusion. Acts 15:20 therefore does not even remotely begin to prove that the Mosaic laws have been nullified. For a better understanding of these verses in Acts 15 go to tomorrowsworld.org/magazines/2008/how-to-study-your-bible then scroll down to principle 5.”

    • How do we reconcile Romans 2:13, James 1:22, and Galatians 2:21 so there is no contradiction?

      I sort of touched on this earlier, but I will try to be more explicit here.
      Romans 2:12-13

      12 For all who have sinned without the Law will also perish without the Law, and all who have sinned under the Law will be judged by the Law; 13 for it is not the hearers of the Law who are just before God, but the doers of the Law will be justified.

      Those who do the law are justified, but it is NOT doing the law which justifies.
      James 1:22

      22 But prove yourselves doers of the word, and not merely hearers who delude themselves.

      When we live the word, we are giving evidence that we have faith. That is to say, we will repent, turn to God, and do deeds that demonstrate we are saved.
      Acts 26:20

      20 but kept declaring both to those of Damascus first, and also at Jerusalem and then throughout all the region of Judea, and even to the Gentiles, that they should repent and turn to God, performing deeds appropriate to repentance.

      James 1:26-27

      26 If anyone thinks himself to be religious, and yet does not bridle his tongue but deceives his own heart, this man’s religion is worthless. 27 Pure and undefiled religion in the sight of our God and Father is this: to visit orphans and widows in their distress, and to keep oneself unstained by the world.

      The Old Testament gave concrete examples of how to live James 1:26-27 for the tribe of Israel. But God has said everyone who believes IS righteous. If you believe in what Christ did, then you are righteous.

      I agree the only things the Holy Spirit and the elders and apostles required of the Gentile believers was to abstain from things which might be considered pagan religious practices. But the Gentile believers were NOT required to follow any of the rest of the Law.
      Acts 21:24-26
      King James Version (YLT)

      24 these having taken, be purified with them, and be at expence with them, that they may shave the head, and all may know that the things of which they have been instructed concerning thee are nothing, but thou dost walk — thyself also — the law keeping. 25 `And concerning those of the nations who have believed, we have written, having given judgment, that they observe no such thing, except to keep themselves both from idol-sacrifices, and blood, and a strangled thing, and whoredom.

      This does not mean people are free to do what they wish, unless what they wish is what God wants.
      If they love God, they will obey God. But GENTILES were not given commands to follow other than obey Christ (1 Peter 1:2) to love one another (John 13:34), that love is the fulfillment of the Law (Romans 13:10). Obviously if you have the Holy Spirit, you will manifest the fruits of the spirit (Romans 8:23). But if you do not, then you need the Law.
      1 Timothy 1:8-11

      8 But we know that the Law is good, if one uses it lawfully, 9 realizing the fact that law is not made for a righteous person, but for those who are lawless and rebellious, for the ungodly and sinners, for the unholy and profane, for those who kill their fathers or mothers, for murderers 10 and immoral men and homosexuals and kidnappers and liars and perjurers, and whatever else is contrary to sound teaching, 11 according to the glorious gospel of the blessed God, with which I have been entrusted.

  11. 1 John 3:4: ” ….. sin is the VIOLATION of the TORAH.” — exeGeses Companion Bible. This particular Bible is one of the more literal, if not the most literal Bible translation. The literal Greek, followed by Strong’s numbers, reads as follows in 1 John 3:4: “Everyone 3956 doing 4160 sin 266 also lawlessness does 458 4160 and sin 266 is 2076 lawlessness 458.” Number 458 for lawlessness, mentioned twice, is the Greek word anomia. “A” means “no” or “without,” and “nomia” means overwhelmingly the Mosaic laws or the written (not oral) torah. So anomia literally means no law or without law, referring to an abandonment of law keeping or actual violation of the law.

    What is your explanation of 1 John 3:4?

    You have quoted a relatively small number of verses, compared to the total number of pro-law verses in the New Testament, that SEEM to say faith saves us and that law keeping does not save us. Do you have an “iron clad” guarantee that the authors of those seemingly anti-law verses are not addressing primarily hard core Jews or other Israelis stubbornly clinging to the law, ignoring faith that the sacrifice of Jesus atones our sins? I do not think it is unreasonable to assume that those verses are aimed at people who think that ONLY law keeping will save them. You keep ignoring a gargantuan number of pro-law verses that I have not yet even quoted for you. I do not think that it is unreasonable to believe salvation depends upon a combination of law keeping and faith.

    Somewhere in the Old Testament there are verses that basically say “here a little, and there a little” that you will find verses that explain true salvation. You sometimes cannot pull one or even a handful of verses out of the Bible and use them to define righteousness. Some Biblical truths are scattered throughout the Bible, and you have to combine them to really understand the Bible.

    Example: “Believe Jesus and you will be saved” is what some verses basically say, initially seeming to say that that is all you need to do to be saved, that faith ALONE will you save you. That assumption flagrantly violates or contradicts a very large number of verses, including many uttered by Jesus Himself. John 3:36: “Whoever believes in the Son has eternal life, whoever DISOBEYS the Son WILL NEVER have life.” — Today’s English Version. Disobedience to the law is apparently the kind of disobedience referred to in this verse, or sin defined in 1 John 3:4. In John 3:36 the Greek word apeitheo appears, Strong’s number 544, which basically means “to refuse belief AND OBEDIENCE

    • sigh.. you and I have already discussed anomia: https://wbmoore.wordpress.com/2009/02/16/has-the-mosaic-law-been-abolished/#comment-15252
      I have articles concerning the Law and Christians and Grace: https://wbmoore.wordpress.com/grace-law-and-the-christian/
      I have articles concerning holiness and sanctification: https://wbmoore.wordpress.com/index-by-topic/holiness-and-sanctification/

      I am tiring of this discussion, as you are ignoring the plain scripture which states we are not under the Law (Romans 6:14-15; 1 Corinthians 9:20-21; Galatians 3:23-25, Galatians 5:18), we are free from the law (Romans 8:2-3). The Law has been set aside (Hebrews 7:18). If you want to follow the Law, you should follow ALL of it, according to scripture. James 2:10

      For whoever keeps the whole law and yet stumbles in one point, he has become guilty of all.

      So if you think you can keep all the Law, then do so. If there are parts of the Law which you can not keep, then you should not put yourself under its yoke (Galatians 5:1; Acts 15).

      You wrote,

      I do not think that it is unreasonable to believe salvation depends upon a combination of law keeping and faith.

      And while I think I understand what you are trying to say, we are not saved by law keeping and faith.
      Salvation is through faith in Christ.
      2 Timothy 3:15

      and that from childhood you have known the sacred writings which are able to give you the wisdom that leads to salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus.

      We are saved through faith, and not by what we do:
      Ephesians 2:8-9

      8 For by grace you have been saved through faith ; and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God ; 9 not as a result of works, so that no one may boast.

      This is EXACTLY what Paul was trying to say when he said circumcision is nothing. Following the Law is not what we are called to do – we are saved apart from the Law.
      Romans 3:28

      For we maintain that a man is justified by faith apart from works of the Law.

      Galatians 2:16

      nevertheless knowing that a man is not justified by the works of the Law but through faith in Christ Jesus, even we have believed in Christ Jesus, so that we may be justified by faith in Christ and not by the works of the Law ; since by the works of the Law no flesh will be justified.

      However, this does not mean we are not to be changed and are not to be holy when we come to faith in Christ.

      Ephesians 1:4

      just as He chose us in Him before the foundation of the world, that we would be holy and blameless before Him. In love

      Ephesians 5:27

      that He might present to Himself the church in all her glory, having no spot or wrinkle or any such thing ; but that she would be holy and blameless.

      1 Peter 1:15-16

      but like the Holy One who called you, be holy yourselves also in all your behavior ; because it is written, “YOU SHALL BE HOLY, FOR I AM HOLY.”

      Any righteousness we have come from God.
      Philippians 3:9

      and may be found in Him, not having a righteousness of my own derived from the Law, but that which is through faith in Christ, the righteousness which comes from God on the basis of faith,

      If we do not live like it, then we must examine our lives. Paul in Acts 26:20,

      but kept declaring both to those of Damascus first, and also at Jerusalem and then throughout all the region of Judea, and even to the Gentiles, that they should repent and turn to God, performing deeds appropriate to repentance.

      The only law we must follow is to love God and love others.
      Luke 10:27

      And he answered, “YOU SHALL LOVE THE LORD YOUR GOD WITH ALL YOUR HEART, AND WITH ALL YOUR SOUL, AND WITH ALL YOUR STRENGTH, AND WITH ALL YOUR MIND ; AND YOUR NEIGHBOR AS YOURSELF.”

      1 John 4:21

      And this commandment we have from Him, that the one who loves God should love his brother also.

      But we do this as evidence of the faith we have, not so we will be saved.

      If we are saved, we will follow the spirit, not the letter of the law.
      Romans 7:6

      But now we have been released from the Law, having died to that by which we were bound, so that we serve in newness of the Spirit and not in oldness of the letter.

  12. Looking into a more detailed list of Strong’s definitions of “law” as it appears in the New Testament, I discovered a definition, actually defined by the New Testament itself, that should, at least hopefully, begin to convince you that I am right. I know that by now no matter what I say, whether it’s right or not, you understandably probably have an ego defending inclination to almost automatically reject it. If you can successfully battle that, though, and considerable peer pressure, maybe you can believe this new definition of law which may be new to you, but essentially not to me.
    The New Strong’s Expanded Exhaustive Concordance of the Bible Red Letter Edition, 2001 edition, on page 172 of the Greek Dictionary of the New Testament, defines nomos, number 3551, translated into the English “law,” under (6e) as “of sin and death,” 8:2, death being the effect.” Romans 8:2 is what is referred to by “8:2.”
    So James Strong said that “law” can be defined as the law of sin and death. How about that?

    Romans 8:1,2: “There is now no condemnation to those who are in Christ Jesus, who do not walk according to the flesh, but according to the Spirit. 2 For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus HAS MADE ME FREE FROM THE LAW OF SIN AND DEATH.” Can’t you understand this now, man? The phrases “not under the law” or “released from the law” or “free from the law” in many verses you have quoted refer to the law of sin and death, or as I have expressed, “not under the penalty of the law” or “released from the penalty of the law.” Your belief that we no longer need to obey many Old Testament laws is condemned by the Bible, described basically “as believing in the right to use grace as a license to sin.”

    Romans 3:31: “Well then, if we are saved by faith, does this mean that we no longer need to OBEY God’s laws (nomos-Mosaic laws, 3551)? JUST THE OPPOSITE! In fact, only when we trust Jesus can we truly OBEY Him.” — Living Bible.

    ROMANS 6:15: “What then? shall we sin (hamartano, 264, transgressing the Mosaic laws), because we are not under the law (nomos-Mosaic law, 3551) but under grace? GOD FORBID!” — King James Version.

    Romans 6:15: “Well then, since God’s grace has set us free from the law, does that mean we can go on sinning (hamartano, 264, transgressing the Mosaic laws)? OF COURSE NOT!” — New Living Translation.

    With this new definition of “not under the law” as more correctly “not under the penalty of the law” or “not under the law of sin and death” you can now accept the Biblical definition of sin as defined in 1 John 3:4 (breaking New AND Old Testament laws) instead of avoiding defining sin. The entirety of the New Testament now becomes much more harmonious with far fewer if any conflicting verses, with this better understanding of what “under the law” means.

    I am enjoying this discussion, but if you still reject the above comment and feel that you are not winning the arguments, I can understand why you are losing interest in this debate.

    • I dont think my ego is involved in whether to follow the Law or not. I’m just tired of the same argument over and over to no purpose.

      The Mosaic Law IS the law of sin and death. This evident when you read Romans 6-8.

      We are FREE from the law of sin and death when we come to faith in Christ.

      There is a huge difference between “not under the law” and “not under the penalty of the law” they are not the same. “not under the law” is to be free from the Law. “not under the penalty of the law” is to not have the law’s debt charged against you.

      And no, being free from the Law is not a license to sin, as I’ve repeatedly expressed and as you have previously ignored. We are to follow the Law of the Spirit (Romans 8:1-3), the Law of Christ (Galatians 6:2).

  13. If it really is true that Christians no longer need to obey some of the Mosaic laws, maybe you can help me to better understand some prophetic Isaiah verses describing a time in the distant future when God will have changed many things, including even making lions eat grass instead of meat. Isaiah 66:17 basically says that people breaking the Mosaic law forbidding eating pork, mice, and other forbidden food will be killed, and Isaiah 66:23 essentially says that every person on the earth definitely will obey another Mosaic law requiring rest/worship every Saturday Sabbath to honor the Lord. Don’t these verses conflict with your beliefs? How should we understand them? If those Old Testament laws will still be in force in the future, it seems only logical they are still in force today. And if the two laws are valid today, it seems that other Mosaic laws would also still be in force.

    Also, I don’t think you ever actually explained, word for word concerning the original Greek, or I cannot find your explanation in this discussion, of what 1 John 3:4 means, where the Bible defines sin. I would appreciate it very much if you could at least very briefly explain what those Greek words mean in that verse.

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