First mention of a solution against death 5 Evil its law of death

There was a lovely harmony in the Garden of Eden. Man was free to walk around and live nicely. He also was free to think and to make choices. There it went wrong. The woman let her mind wander and got tempted by her thoughts, willing to know more.
We have seen that the yielding to the tempter or man’s mind doubting God‘s honesty is treated allegorically in the Edenic covenant as the serpent in the flesh. First man was full of life but now death had come to him. Temptation had taken over and evil had entered his mind. This evil is the “devil” or diabolos of the New Testament, which term is defined as “that which has the power of death” (Hebrews 2:14), elsewhere described as “the law of sin and death”, “sin that dwelleth in me”, “sin in the flesh” (Romans 7:20; Romans 8:2-3).

Hebrews 2:14-15 NHEBJE  Since then the children have shared in flesh and blood, he also himself in like manner partook of the same, that through death he might bring to nothing him who had the power of death, that is, the devil,  (15)  and might deliver all of them who through fear of death were all their lifetime subject to bondage.

Eve was taken in by her thoughts which proofed not to be good thoughts.  Those ideas opposing God’s Wishes are considered bad thoughts. Going against God His Will is as declaring yourself to be against His ideas and opposing Him or to rival God, taking on the position of an opponent of God or an adversary (satan) of God.

Evil thoughts got so much power in man that it brought death to them but also put its stamp on all the rest of mankind. The act of the first two human beings created an awful situation for us. The curse of death having come over man also brought plants and animals in danger. Because now the mind of man was filled with darkness and their way of thinking became so blurred that often they would take the wrong decisions. At the beginning of the universe man had received the plants as food, meaning they had to be vegetarians or veganists. By the years following their expulsion from the Garden of Eden they were not happy any more by eating only plants and wanted also to eat meat, also becoming more like the animals, a carnivor. By doing so they also became killers of animal. They had taken their power to be master over plants and animals to be able to kill other living beings. Evil or badness in this way creped further in their life and as such evil or satan has become master or chief ruler of this world now. The enmity against God was so strong it became deeply rooted in the next generations.  Paul described how that this “warred against the law of my mind” (Romans 7:23), and in doing so gave expression to the enmity described by God in the 15th verse of Genesis 3.

Romans 7:23 NHEBJE  but I see a different law in my members, warring against the law of my mind, and bringing me into captivity under the law of sin which is in my members.

God talking about the seed to come (a seed of a new generation), wanted mankind a solution for what they had caused and for those who had nothing to do with that first fault or wrong choice of Adam and Eve. God had asked not to touch nor to eat from the tree, which was a law for man. They ignored it, but with it they also did not listen to God.  Also later the many Laws provided by God to guide man, got ignored. Through the flesh every law would be weak. But the seed or the send one from God was to show the world that he who also was in the likeness of sinful flesh, and for sin, condemned sin in the flesh, would be able to follow the Laws of God, not doing his own Will, but continually doing the Will of God. The action or attitude of that seed was going to contradict the thoughts of those taken by that ‘hissing in the mind’, the ‘serpent‘ or ‘evil’, the adversary of God, satan or the devil. Those coming after Adam and Eve also would have the choice to be after the flesh either to mind the things of the flesh or to love the things of the flesh. The loving harmony which subsisted between the Father and the son restored the relationship between God and mankind and could again bring liberation in the condemnation of sin in the flesh.

Romans 8:3 NHEBJE  For what the law could not do, in that it was weak through the flesh, God did, sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh and for sin, he condemned sin in the flesh;

Though there is constant enmity or animosity between the lusts of the flesh and the requirements of God as set down in His law those who would come into the seed of the woman and would follow his teachings could make themselves stronger and become once again in the spiritual life or after the Spirit (o. pneuma) or the things of the Spirit (o. pneuma) . In order to be carnally minded is death; but to be spiritually (o. pneuma) minded is life and peace.

Romans 8:5-10 NHEBJE  For those who live according to the flesh set their minds on the things of the flesh, but those who live according to the Spirit, the things of the Spirit.  (6)  For the mind of the flesh is death, but the mind of the Spirit is life and peace;  (7)  because the mind of the flesh is hostile towards God; for it is not subject to God’s law, neither indeed can it be.  (8)  Those who are in the flesh cannot please God.  (9)  But you are not in the flesh but in the Spirit, if it is so that the Spirit of God dwells in you. But if any man does not have the Spirit of Christ, he is not his.  (10)  If Christ is in you, the body is dead because of sin, but the spirit is alive because of righteousness.

That the serpent is used allegorically of sin is shown by the punishment meted out to Israel when the people “spake against God, and against Moses” (Numbers 21:5). Serpents appeared among the people, the sting of which proved fatal (cp. 1 Corinthians 15:56), so that “much people of Israel died”.

1 Corinthians 15:56 NHEBJE  (56)  The sting of death is sin, and the power of sin is the law.

In panic, the rest of the people appealed to Moses for help, and he interceded with God on their behalf. He was told to make a serpent of brass, and to set it on a pole, so that the people might view it. All who did so in faith were saved from the death that threatened them. The serpent on the pole illustrated to the people what they should do to the “serpent” within (the carnal mind that inflamed lust): they must crucify it if they would live.

The serpent or evil could put the seed on the pole, Jesus Christ being put to death, as a symbol of bringing the curse of evil and death to its end, Jesus vanquish evil by giving his unblemished body as a ransom for all who had that sin of the flesh. His decision only to follow God His Will has overcome the fault of those who followed their own will, ignoring God’s Will.

Unlike the active serpents on the ground, there was no venom in the serpent on the pole (not by Moses, not by Jesus Christ); similarly sin must be neutralised in us if we would live. At the time of Moses the serpent on the pole could also representing that seed promised in the Garden of Eden,the Lord Jesus Christ who came in the nature common to all. On several occasions he compared his crucifixion with the “lifting up” of the serpent in the wilderness (John 3:14-16; John 8:28; John 12:32), thus identifying his nature with the allegorical significance of the serpent.

John 3:14-21 NHEBJE  As Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of Man be lifted up,  (15)  that whoever believes in him may have eternal life.  (16)  For God so loved the world, that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish, but have eternal life.  (17)  For God did not send his Son into the world to judge the world, but that the world should be saved through him.  (18)  He who believes in him is not judged. He who does not believe has been judged already, because he has not believed in the name of the one and only Son of God.  (19)  This is the judgment, that the light has come into the world, and men loved the darkness rather than the light; for their works were evil.  (20)  For everyone who does evil hates the light, and does not come to the light, lest his works would be exposed.  (21)  But he who does the truth comes to the light, that his works may be revealed, that they have been done in God.”

All About Evil
All About Evil (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

We do live in a time now that people should be able to see who God has send to the earth and has lifted up. Today there are still too many, even people who call themselves Christian, who do not want to believe Jesus is that seed God has promised and send to the earth. They still do not want to believe Jesus is really the son of God and not a god son. They still do not want to accept that Jesus did not his own will (which he would have done when he is God) and and that he did nothing on his own authority, but spoke just as his heavenly Father taught him.

John 8:28-29 NHEBJE  Jesus therefore said to them, “When you have lifted up the Son of Man, then you will know that I am he, and I do nothing of myself, but as the Father taught me, I say these things.  (29)  He who sent me is with me. The Father hasn’t left me alone, for I always do the things that are pleasing to him.”

John 12:32 NHEBJE  And I, if I am lifted up from the earth, will draw everyone to myself.”

In the seed, which always did only those things that pleased Jehovah God, would come power to battle the evil. All those who would come to recognise that seed and would come under it, multiplying in unity trying to put away those fleshly lusts would be able to put their flesh to death at the stake to gain life in the mind of Christ.

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Preceding articles

A multifold of elements in creation and a bad choice made

First mention of a solution against death 1 To divine, serpent, opposition, satan and adversary

First mention of a solution against death 2 Harm or no harm and naked truth

First mention of a solution against death 3 Tempter Satan and man’s problems

First mention of a solution against death 4 A seed for mankind

Next: First mention of a solution against death 6

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Additional reading

  1. Trusting, Faith, calling and Ascribing to Jehovah #3 Voice of God #6 Words to feed and communicate
  2. The Seed Of The Woman Bruised
  3. Jesus begotten Son of God #10 Coming down spirit or flesh seed of Eve
  4. Sayings of Jesus, what to believe and being or not of the devil
  5. A question to be posed
  6. Which man is mentioned most often in the Bible? Jesus, Moses, Abraham or David?
  7. Who is on the Lord’s side
  8. Chaff and the shoot out of the stock of Jesse
  9. Seeing or not seeing and willingness to find God
  10. The God of hope filling us with all joy and peace
  11. A book of life and a man born more than two thousand years ago
  12. Not about personal salvation but about a bigger Plan
  13. True riches
  14. Let us become nothing, and Christ everything
  15. Deliverance and establishement of a theocracy
  16. Solution for Willing hearts filled with gifts
  17. Looking for something or for the Truth and what it might be and self-awareness
  18. Message from the family tree in the Tanakh
  19. Set free from any form of mental torment or self-condemnation
  20. Were allowed to willfully break the Law of Moses
  21. God loving people justified
  22. No curtain placed over tomorrow
  23. Has the Bible’s Garden of Eden been found — and restored
  24. A promise given in the Garden of Eden
  25. Around pre-existence of Christ

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Further reading

  1. Where Did We Get Our Sinful Nature?
  2. “Where are you?” N:o 25 The enmity in the history
  3. As a believer your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost
  4. The Truth About Being Born Again
  5. Walking in the Spirit
  6. Be Still
  7. Covenant and the law (Sir 24:23-24:23)
  8. Looking at the Ocean and Seeing God’s Hand
  9. Signs from God
  10. Prophet Moses’ Obedience to Ishmaelite Prophet Jethro
  11. Anatoly of Optina: “Wherever God is — there is peace.”
  12. Debtor
  13. Enmity
  14. From The Heart The Mouth Speaks
  15. The Fight You Won’t Win
  16. Addiction #05 — Eating Animals (05/27/12)
  17. Men think they need to eat meat to be manly—and it’s making them sick
  18. How humans are not physically created to eat meat

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Creation of the earth and man #23 Man in the image and likeness of the Elohim #7 Corporeal and spiritual change

In the previous chapters we have looked at the corporeal change of those, who have first been morally renewed unto knowledge after the image of Him that had created them from “sinful flesh” into spirit, which is an absolute necessity, before they can inherit the Kingdom of God. After people get to know God’s Word and come to understand Who created the earth and Who had sent His son for the good of man they shall have to come to see that even when we still have to face death in this system of things we may live by the hope of something better to come.

Though we have the sleep in death and shall perhaps have to face very difficult times, even facing persecution we should be convinced not to sorrow as the others. We should not react like the unbelievers, who may react heavily because they do not have such a hope the followers of Jeshua have.
For if we have given ourselves to become disciples of the sent one from God believe that this son of God, Jesus, died and rose again, we do have our hope in him because knowing that God can not die, but the son of man Jesus really died, we have hope in this example God has given the world. This man of flesh and blood is really take out of the dead and taken up in the skies to sit next to God, not on God’s throne, but at His right hand.

These who take Jesus to be their god and think no man is capable to be sinless and doing God’s Will, make from God a cruel God Who created beings who were not capable to follow His commandments. They deny the resurrection of the dead and are refuting God’s Power to have man following His commandments. Those gainsayers are as such believing that man can only do his own will and not believing that man is capable to transform and to become changed into spirit, or immortalized, by the Son of Man, doing God’s Will.

The believers in Jeshua, him being the son of God and not making him into a god son, may comfort one another with the words which are given to us in the Bible.

It will be seen from this, that survivors of the dead were not consoled in the first age of Christianity for the loss of their friends as they are now by those who “improve the death” of the influential among them. In “funeral sermons”, the “immortal souls” of the deceased are transported “on angels’ wings to heaven”, and the living are consoled with the assurance that they are singing the praises of God around the throne; feasting with Abraham, and the prophets, with the saints and martyrs, and with Jesus and his apostles in the Kingdom of God; and they are themselves persuaded, that the souls of their relations, now become angels, are watching over them, and praying for them; and that when they die their own souls will be re-united with them in the realms of bliss.

Need I say to the man enlightened in the word, that there is no such comfort, or consolation, as this in the law and the testimony of God?

A Goblin or legendary evil or mischievous grotesque dwarf-like daemon or monster that appeared in European stories and accounts during the Middle Ages. – Goblin from Warhammer

Such traditions are purely mythological; and come of the Nicolaitan dogma of saved “ghosts, and goblins damn’d” which has cancerously extirpated “the truth as it is in Jesus”.
No, the apostles did not point men to the day of their death, and its immediate consequents, for comfort; nor did they administer the consolations of the gospel to any who had not obeyed it. They offered comfort only to the disciples; for they only are the heirs with Jesus of the Kingdom of God. They taught these to look to the coming of Christ, and to the resurrection, as the time of a re-union with their brethren in the faith. At death, they should

“rest from their labours, and their works should follow them”;

and

“to them that look for him shall he appear the second time without sin unto salvation”. {a Heb. 9:28.}

Such were the practical and intelligible “words” with which the apostles comforted their brethren; but words which have become sealed and cabalistic, both to the unlearned and “the wise”.

The Unisphere, attributed to “uribe”/Uri Baruchin

In conclusion, then, as far as power is concerned, God could have created all things upon a spiritual or incorruptible basis at once. The globe could have been filled with men and women, equal to the angels in nature, power, and intellect, on the sixth day; but the world would have been without a history, and its population characterless. This, however, would not have been according to the plan. The animal must precede the spiritual as the acorn goes before the oak. This will explain many difficulties which are created by systems; and which will for ever remain inexplicable upon the hypotheses they invent. The Bible has to do with things, not imaginations; with bodies, not phantasmata; with “living souls” of every species; with corporeal beings of other worlds; and with incorruptible and undying men; but it is as mute as death, and silent as the grave, having nothing at all to say about such “souls” as men pretend to “cure”; except to repudiate them as a part of that “philosophy and vain deceit”, {b. Col. 2:8} “which some professing have erred concerning the faith.” {c  1 Tim. 6:21}

– Thomas, D. J.; Elpis Israel: an exposition of the Kingdom of God (electronic ed., pp. 45–46). Birmingham, UK: The Christadelphian.

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Notes & quotes

a Hebrews 9:28 (ESV): 28 so Christ, having been offered once to bear the sins of many, will appear a second time, not to deal with sin but to save those who are eagerly waiting for him.

b Colossians 2:8 (ESV): See to it that no one takes you captive by philosophy and empty deceit, according to human tradition, according to the elemental spirits of the world, and not according to Christ.

c 1 Timothy 6:21 (ESV): 21 for by professing it some have swerved from the faith.
Grace be with you.

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Preceding article:

Creation of the earth and man #22 Man in the image and likeness of the Elohim #6 Spirits, spiritual bodies and illusory perception

Necessity of a revelation of creation 11 Believing and obeying the gospel of the Kingdom of God

Bible, God speaking words profitable for doctrine, for reproof and for correction

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Additional readings

  1. Bible, sword of the Spirit to come into the unity of the faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man
  2. The truth is very plain to see and God can be clearly seen
  3. The chosen ones to fear or not to fear
  4. God won’t ask
  5. Kingdom of God, a journey
  6. The one who set the standard
  7. Disciple of Christ counting lives and friends dear to them
  8. Signs of the the last days when difficult times will come
  9. After the Sabbath after Passover, the resurrection of Jesus Christ
  10. Jesus is risen
  11. Outflow of foundational relationship based on acceptance of Jesus
  12. Exceeding Great and Precious Promise
  13. Invitation to all who believe
  14. Dying or not
  15. Immortality, eternality – onsterfelijkheid, eeuwigheid
  16. God’s wrath and sanctification
  17. With God All Things Are Possible
  18. The world is but a great inn
  19. A concrete picture of what is to come in the future
  20. Empire with Jesus the emperor
  21. The builder of the Kingdom
  22. Not all will inherit the Kingdom
  23. Receiving a kingdom that cannot be shaken
  24. A god who gave his people commandments and laws he knew they never could keep to it
  25. Elul Observances
  26. January 27, 417, Pope Innocent I condemning Pelagius about Faith and Works
  27. Salvation and Righteousness
  28. We are redeemed; we are “bought with a price”
  29. Failing Man to make free choice
  30. Knowing where to go to
  31. A Living Faith #1 Substance of things hoped for
  32. Faith and trial
  33. Faith Alone Does Not Save . . . No Matter How Many Times Protestants Say It Does
  34. A Living Faith #3 Faith put into action
  35. A Living Faith #6 Sacrifice
  36. First man’s task still counting today
  37. He who knows himself, is kind to others
  38. Luther’s misunderstanding
  39. January 27, 417, Pope Innocent I condemning Pelagius about Faith and Works
  40. Our life depending on faith
  41. Romans 4 and the Sacraments
  42. Is Justification a process?
  43. Letter to the Romans, chapter 3
  44. Letter to the Romans, chapter 4
  45. Additional comments to the 3rd Letter to the Romans
  46. Additional comments to the Letter to the Romans 4
  47. Comments to James remarks, about Faith and works
  48. Be holy
  49. Those who make peace should plant peace like a seed
  50. Times of the Gentiles
  51. How do you keep people from stealing your joy?
  52. Learn how to go out into the world and proclaim the Good News of the coming Kingdom
  53. Bringing Good News into the world
  54. United people under Christ
  55. The work of the angels in guiding national affairs

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Further related articles

  1. You believe in one God? Good, so do the other gods.
  2. Weeping and gnashing of teeth
  3. Bible, God speaking words profitable for doctrine, for reproof and for correctionSatan in the New Testament (2)
  4. Satan in the New Testament (3): The Devil and his angels
  5. Angels and Princes in Daniel 10
  6. Bible, God speaking words profitable for doctrine, for reproof and for correctionWas David “a man after God’s own heart”?
  7. Jesus on hell (1)
  8. Waiting
  9. Kingdom Timing
  10. …as is Israel’s eternal duty…
  11. …as is Israel’s eternal duty. part 2.
  12. On the Joy Train I Go!
  13. Kingdom of God – river of lifeThe Kingdom of God and Non-Violence (Part 2)
  14. The kingdom of heaven is the Christian disciple’s true home
  15. The Kingdom’s Authority
  16. Why We Shouldn’t Call Ourselves Born-Again Christians
  17. New Creation: Here, But Not Yet
  18. The Return of The Native
  19. Next Scheduled Stop: The Judgment Seat of Christ (Part 3)
  20. The faithful remnant
  21. Unseen Servants
  22. You’re not a Slave, You’re a Son
  23. Have Courage!
  24. Jesus’ First Sermon (Mark 1. 14-15)
  25. Politics, Christianity, and the End of the World
  26. Fourth Sunday in Ordinary Time
  27. Rhymer of God series (#3)
  28. Not a Christian Bubble
  29. The Poor in Spirit (Matt. 5:3)
  30. (In)justice and (in)action
  31. Kingdom of the Son
  32. Go with the Flow
  33. A Bus Called Heaven. Bob Graham
  34. Stand Up For Jesus
  35. Third Friday in Ordinary Time
  36. Third Sunday in Ordinary Time: Are you Working to Fulfill Scripture?
  37. Going Home
  38. Quaker Faith & Practice for the 21st Century: IIj
  39. God is Jehovah Jireh – The LORD Will Provide
  40. Lay Your Burden Down And Let God Be God And Just Be Yourself
  41. Michael Horton Differentiates Law and Gospel
  42. The Subnormal Christian Life
  43. 14 How to Work Your Way to Hell

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Not trying to make the heathen live like Jews #2

In the previous postings we have seen that man had to be reminded to his own choice to be without God as their Commander and because off that choice got a reminder of their mortality.

We by know should see the significance of the introduction of the Sabbath commands being associated with the provision of manna.

For many people Mosaic law in the Bible can be confusing and often also in Judaic groups we can find lots of debates about certain laws to be followed in what sort of way. Many Christians do not like to talk so much about those laws and which ones we have to follow.

Critics of Christendom and Christianity and non-believers often question how there can exist such a god who is so demanding.  Some even find that Judaism, Christendom and the Muslim world do have a very cruel and petty god.

In many religious groups the question is posed which laws we still do have to follow.

According to some

” There are definitely some bizarre statutes, such as not being allowed to mix two kinds of fabric, or not cooking a goat in its mothers milk. There are also all the dietary restrictions of not being allowed to eat certain “unclean” animals such as pigs, not to mention all the sacrificial laws to atone for sin. These things seem drastic and at the very least, unnecessary. Now obviously most Christians don’t follow any of these. So what are we supposed to do with it? We know that God is the same yesterday, today, and forever. So what has changed? {What are we gonna do with this Torah?}

The fall of man
The fall of man (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

In the previous postings we have shown that all relates to mankind’s decision to take a certain attitude to God. We need to understand that because of sin we were not able to relate to God as he intended it. By man’s own choice he became separated from his own Creator. For this reason god made a structure so that they could often enough be reminded of Him Divine Creator.

In the previous writings you could see that God provided physical and spiritual food for man and gave them rules to follow so that they could have an easier life. He also demanded from them to respect Him as the Only One True God and not to make any graven images of Him.

We also could see how God provided already from the beginning of the fall of man, a solution in the person of Jeshua, Jesus Christ, the sent one from God who could bring salvation by showing the world a man was able not to do his own will but to rightly follow the Will of God.

Before the placed one on earth

Before the only begotten son of God was placed on the earth, all believers where still in a situation to be compared with God’s people in Egypt. But now we do have Jesus, God’s faithful Son who is called out of Egypt, filling up what was lacking in the first faithless son, Israel.

First Israel, God’s son, broke the covenant and deserved God’s wrath. Like at the beginning in the Garden of Eden, God‘s promise brings the one and only working solution for mankind. It is not by doing certain works that the liberation shall come over us. It is by the Gift of Grace that we receive freedom, but that would not liberate us from following certain orders made by God.

Galatians 4:3-5 NHEBJE  So we also, when we were children, were held in bondage under the elemental principles of the world.  (4)  But when the fullness of the time came, God sent out his Son, born to a woman, born under the law,  (5)  that he might redeem those who were under the law, that we might receive the adoption of children.

Completion of Israel’s designation

God his only begotten Son Jesus Christ (Matthew 3:17), whom God loves and with him God is well pleased, is the one who came to complete all that Israel was designed to perform. Some Jews got to see that, but also some non-Jews. Therefore the Jews started wondering if those new converts also had to fulfil all the requirements of the Jewish or Judaic and Mosaic Laws.

Those Jews who had chosen to follow their Masterteacher Jeshua as the Messiah had also some who came to compare the old Jews and the new ‘Jews’ or converted goyim, people from all nations and all sorts other religions. The news of the conversion of the Gentiles is received with joy (Acts 15:12). They could see how many thousands of Yehuḏim there had come to be ardent for the Torah.

Torah and morality for man to follow

For generations since Moses the Jews had their preachers in every town, and it was been read aloud in the synagogues every Sabbath how to conduct oneself. As such it was questioned what the new converts had to avoid. Had they to worry about anything that has been contaminated by idols, immorality, the meat of strangled animals, and the tasting of blood?

The Jews had their Mosaic Law as a great bulwark of morality, and there was excuse for wondering whether pagans could keep its moral precepts, without observing it entirely. So this party, which did not represent the church at Jerusalem, (Acts 15:13 ff.), came to Antioch and insisted that circumcision and the Law were necessary for those who wished to enter the Messianic kingdom on earth, and be saved. The Judaizing party had evidently little following outside Jerusalem.

Gentiles, Judaizing Christians and Jews

In Jerusalem many thought that Paul was teaching all the Jews who are among the Gentiles to forsake Moses, saying that they ought not to circumcise their children nor to walk according to the customs. Therefore they requested the assembly to meet. Concerning the Gentiles who believe, the apostles have written and decided that they should observe no such thing, except that they should keep themselves from things offered to idols, from blood, from things strangled, and from sexual immorality. Then Paul took the men, and the next day, having been purified with them, entered the temple to announce the expiration of the days of purification, at which time an offering should be made for each one of them.

Acts 21:17-26 NHEBJE  When we had come to Jerusalem, the brothers received us gladly.  (18)  The day following, Paul went in with us to James; and all the elders were present.  (19)  When he had greeted them, he reported one by one the things which God had worked among the Gentiles through his ministry.  (20)  They, when they heard it, glorified God. They said to him, “You see, brother, how many thousands there are among the Judeans of those who have believed, and they are all zealous for the Law.  (21)  They have been informed about you, that you teach all the Jews who are among the Gentiles to forsake Moses, telling them not to circumcise their children neither to walk after the customs.  (22)  What then? They will certainly hear that you have come.  (23)  Therefore do what we tell you. We have four men who have taken a vow.  (24)  Take them, and purify yourself with them, and pay their expenses for them, that they may shave their heads. Then all will know that there is no truth in the things that they have been informed about you, but that you yourself also walk keeping the Law.  (25)  But concerning the Gentiles who believe, we have written our decision that they should keep themselves from food offered to idols, from blood, from strangled things, and from sexual immorality.”  (26)  Then Paul took the men, and the next day, purified himself and went with them into the temple, declaring the fulfillment of the days of purification, until the offering was offered for every one of them.

An elaborate list of “do” and “don’t” items

A turn was made in history of man when the sent one of God had proven that man could do the Will of God and presented himself as an offering for all sinners. Jesus himself also knew that said that the Sabbath was made for man. (Mark 2:27).

Mark 2:23-28 NHEBJE  It happened that he was going on the Sabbath day through the grain fields, and his disciples began, as they went, to pluck the ears of grain.  (24)  The Pharisees said to him, “Behold, why do they do that which is not lawful on the Sabbath day?”  (25)  He said to them, “Did you never read what David did, when he had need, and was hungryhe, and those who were with him?  (26)  How he entered into the house of God when Abiathar was high priest, and ate the show bread, which is not lawful to eat except for the priests, and gave also to those who were with him?”  (27)  He said to them, “The Sabbath was made for man, not man for the Sabbath.  (28)  Therefore the Son of Man is lord even of the Sabbath.”

The Fall of Man
The Fall of Man (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Jesus reminded the Pharisees about their attitude concerning observing religious rituals; like they declared that joy was more important than observing religious rituals, but could not see how on the Sabbath certain things could be done. The gleaning on the fields by the apostles was not considered stealing according to Deuteronomy 23:2, but the rabbis were more concerned about the day on which it happened and felt it belonged to an act of their elaborate list of “not to do”  items relevant to the Sabbath. For them it was a serious violation of one of the items on this list.
When the disciples began to pluck the heads of grain, in the eyes of the religious leaders they were guilty of 4 faults: reaping, threshing, winnowing, preparing food.

At this time, Rabbis filled Judaism with elaborate rituals related to the Sabbath and observance of other laws. Ancient Rabbis taught that on the Sabbath, a man could not carry something in his right hand or in his left hand, across his chest or on his shoulder. But you could carry something with the back of your hand, with your foot, with your elbow, or in your ear, your hair, or in the hem of your shirt, or in your shoe or sandal. Or, on the Sabbath, you were forbidden to tie a knot – except a woman could tie a knot in her girdle. So, if a bucket of water had to be raised from a well, you could not tie a rope to the bucket, but a woman could tie her girdle to the bucket!
{Guzik commentary on the Gospel of Mark}

What they did not understand is that Jeshua never violated the mitzvah or God’s commands in any way. He took time to study God’s Word and did everything to live according to it. Jeshua with his disciples went to different places and wherever they came they took time to worship God and to observe the Sabbath.

For this sent one from God, who did not want to do his own will (which he would have done in case he himself was God, like some think)would not have approved of his disciples violating God’s commands to observe the Sabbath. But for him there was a big difference between the laws of God and the laws made by man. He could see that by time man added rules had come in the Jewish tradition, which had more to do with man made legalistic ways than with God His Ways.

Human need more important than religious ritual

A very often overlooked issue is the one of the needs of man and of the regulations for man in this time of age.

We do live in a world where man can reign, but where man has also many needs. People do have to eat and to be taken care for, every day and not just one day of the week not. When people would not be treated one day in the week it could well be that they would die that day, because of not having had the right treatment. But not only for life matters it was important to recognise that man could and should be able to do certain things which he would or would not do on the other days of the week. It could be for relaxation, for entertainment, or for making himself wiser, etc..

Also people had to take care for others, and our of love should also sometimes do things which would demand work.

Can you imagine those who do believe in God and do find we do have to keep Sabbath, but take a taxi or public transport, watch television, want to have shops open for getting what they want, want to go to the theatre and have people working for them, so you could say they are not concerned that those people then would do something against the Will of God and would loose their life? This would be very unloving and very selfish.

Sabbath from Friday sunset to Saturday sunset

Those who say Christians do have to keep to the Sabbath Law should then keep Sabbath from Friday sunset to Saturday sunset and should abstain of any form of work but also of any relaxation which would have others working, like watching television, going on the internet, wanting medical care, etc.

Those who say the Sabbath is Sunday should look at Jeshua which day he kept. That was the Jewish Sabbath and not what they call the Lord’s Day. God’s Day of rest was from what we now call Friday-night until the time sun goes down on Saturday and not when the clock strikes 12 on Saturday night until Sunday 12 pm..

It is not by days that we can be separated from God, but by our acts of doing wrong. It is sin which alienates us from God not the keeping of one or an other day in a different way than the other days.

To remind our position in the universe of God

God had given the Law to Moses so that people could be reminded of their Creator and of their position in the creation. God’s law shows us that we are not able to attain righteousness through laws, but by making our own right choices like the sent one from God made the right choices from his own, not pushed by any other person.

The first Adam did not keep to God His Wishes and his descendants were not better. Though the descendant of the tribe of David, showed he also had could reason to be a beloved son of God. As the second Adam he also could not attain righteousness through the law. He like any man could sin, something only God can not, but he always made the right choices, following not his own will but the Will of God.

Because of being infected by the fall of man we are unable to be without spot. For us week human beings it is difficult to keep to God’s standards. His ordinances may be set apart from the human rules, but that does not yet mean that we can’t be able to become set-apart our selves (being holy).

Fulfiller of Law

By only doing God’s Will and not the one of his own, Jesus proofed to God and to mankind that man is able to keep to God’s Will. By his way of living and giving himself for mankind he opened the way for a restored relationship between God and mankind.

For centuries man had tried to live according to God’s regulations, but did not seem to succeed. Now there was this Nazarene man who succeeded. By doing so he fulfilled the law and liberated all others from the Old Ordinances bringing them under a New Covenant, a New Regulation. By the sealing of his death a start was given to a New World.

Jesus died as a perfect payment for all the past, present, and future sins of all people. Though now people do have to recognise that sacrificial offering and have to come to see that Jesus is the Way to God now.

Matthew 5:17 NHEBJE  “Do not think that I came to destroy the Law or the Prophets. I did not come to destroy, but to fulfill.

In a certain way do we not need the Mosaic Law any more, when we accept Jesus as our new law giver. God gave him authority to teach the world and to judge the world. We are by Christ Jesus Justified by faith. So it is up to people to follow Jesus or either to ignore him like many ignore Jesus his heavenly Father, the Only One God.

Through Christ Jesus righteousness is granted to us, and not any more by the Mosaic Law. He nailed the law and its consequences unto the stake. Through Jesus the sacrificial laws have been nullified and the temple curtain has been torn to allow all who know God to come to him, unrestricted, through the Holy Spirit.

Ephesians 2:8-16 NHEBJE  (8)  for by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God,  (9)  not of works, that no one would boast.  (10)  For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared before that we would walk in them.  (11)  Therefore remember that once you, the Gentiles in the flesh, who are called “uncircumcision” by that which is called “circumcision,” (in the flesh, made by hands);  (12)  that you were at that time separate from Christ, alienated from the commonwealth of Israel, and strangers from the covenants of the promise, having no hope and without God in the world.  (13)  But now in Christ Jesus you who once were far off are made near in the blood of Christ.  (14)  For he is our peace, who made both one, and broke down the middle wall of partition,  (15)  having abolished in the flesh the hostility, the law of commandments contained in ordinances, that he might create in himself one new man of the two, making peace;  (16)  and might reconcile them both in one body to God through the cross, having killed the hostility thereby.

Ordering works and ways of living

From the Jews there were ordered works of Torah, but those who came to Christianity should have to see that Jesus nailed the Old Covenant to the stake and as such did not have to keep to certain laws of food and customs.

Paul had also come to see that certain Jews did more live like gentiles and therefore questioned a.o. Cephas how he who lived not like a Jew, could force the Gentiles to live like Jews.
The Jews by birth who followed Jeshua understood that a person is not justified by works of the law but through faith in Jesus Christ. Jeshua’s followers believed in the Nazarene man to be the Messiah, the promised sent one from God. They were convinced that by works of the law no one will be justified.

From the 1° Adam onwards all man had been with sin except Christ Jesus. Jeshua did not become a servant of sin. Those converts to the teachings of Jeshua died to the Mosaic Law so that they might live to God. They should walk and live by faith in the Son of God, who loved us and gave himself for us all.

Galatians 2:14-21 NHEBJE  (14)  But when I saw that they did not walk uprightly according to the truth of the Good News, I said to Cephas before them all, “If you, being a Jew, live as the Gentiles do, and not as the Jews do, how can you compel the Gentiles to live as the Jews do?  (15)  “We, being Jews by birth, and not Gentile sinners,  (16)  yet knowing that a man is not justified by the works of the law but through faith in Jesus Christ, even we believed in Christ Jesus, that we might be justified by faith in Christ, and not by the works of the law, because no flesh will be justified by the works of the law.  (17)  But if, while we sought to be justified in Christ, we ourselves also were found sinners, is Christ a servant of sin? Certainly not!  (18)  For if I build up again those things which I destroyed, I prove myself a law-breaker.  (19)  For I, through the law, died to the law, that I might live to God.  (20)  I have been crucified with Christ, and it is no longer I that live, but Christ living in me. That life which I now live in the flesh, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself up for me.  (21)  I do not make void the grace of God. For if righteousness is through the law, then Christ died for nothing!”

False teachings unsettling minds and burdens

In the early times of Christianity already false teachers could be found and people who disturbed others by their teaching and unsettled others their minds. The assembled meeting of Jewish brethren unanimously resolved to select representatives and send them to the ecclesiae so that they could hear how the view was made under the direction of the Holy Spirit after prayer and wise consult. By word of mouth the message was given to the other ecclesia.  They agreed that it was for the Holy Spirit and their meeting that had decided not to lay upon others any burden but this indispensable one,  that they had to avoid whatever has been sacrificed to idols, the tasting of blood and of the meat of animals that have been strangled, and immorality. They in first instance had to keep themselves free from these things.

Acts 15:24-29 NHEBJE  Because we have heard that some who went out from us have troubled you with words, unsettling your souls, to whom we gave no commandment;  (25)  it seemed good to us, having come to one accord, to choose out men and send them to you with our beloved Barnabas and Paul,  (26)  men who have risked their lives for the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.  (27)  We have sent therefore Judas and Silas, who themselves will also tell you the same things by word of mouth.  (28)  For it seemed good to the Holy Spirit, and to us, to lay no greater burden on you than these necessary things:  (29)  that you abstain from things sacrificed to idols, from blood, from things strangled, and from sexual immorality, from which if you keep yourselves, it will be well with you. Farewell.”

As such old customs like bringing certain offers, tithing, were not necessary any more, because even by the Jews there were ones who did not like it and tried to escape from it.

From several parables and sayings form Jeshua, Jesus Christ, we do know that it is much more important to live according to the spirit of the Law, be it Mosaic or any other law, than to the letter.

End of the law

Those people who say they are Christian should follow the teachings of the master-teacher, rabbi Jeshua, and should accept his words about himself, his heavenly Father and about how we do have to live.

He also gave a golden rule which should guide us through our life and be our goal to love God and God His creation, like Jesus loved us we should love ourself and one another.

John 13:34-35 NHEBJE  A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another. Just as I have loved you, you also must love one another.  (35)  By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another.”

John 15:12-13 NHEBJE  “This is my commandment, that you love one another, even as I have loved you.  (13)  Greater love has no one than this, that someone lay down his life for his friends.

John 14:21 NHEBJE  One who has my commandments, and keeps them, that person is one who loves me. One who loves me will be loved by my Father, and I will love him, and will reveal myself to him.”

Romans 10:4 NHEBJE  For Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to everyone who believes.

Colossians 2:6-17 NHEBJE  (6)  As therefore you received Christ Jesus, the Lord, walk in him,  (7)  rooted and built up in him, and established in the faith, even as you were taught, abounding in it in thanksgiving.  (8)  Be careful that you do not let anyone rob you through his philosophy and vain deceit, after the tradition of men, after the elements of the world, and not after Christ.  (9)  For in him all the fullness of God’s nature dwells bodily,  (10)  and in him you are made full, who is the head of all principality and power;  (11)  in whom you were also circumcised with a circumcision not made with hands, in the putting off of the body of the flesh, in the circumcision of Christ;  (12)  having been buried with him in baptism, in which you were also raised with him through faith in the working of God, who raised him from the dead.  (13)  You were dead through your trespasses and the uncircumcision of your flesh. He made you alive together with him, having forgiven us all our trespasses,  (14)  wiping out the handwriting in ordinances which was against us; and he has taken it out of the way, nailing it to the cross;  (15)  having stripped the principalities and the powers, he made a show of them openly, triumphing over them in it.  (16)  Let no man therefore judge you in eating, or in drinking, or with respect to a feast day or a new moon or a Sabbath day,  (17)  which are a shadow of the things to come; but the body is Christ’s.

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Preceding articles:

Not trying to make the heathen live like Jews #1

Genesis – Story of creation 6 Genesis 3:13-24 Enmity and curse

Creation of the earth and man #3 Of the Sabbath day #1 the Seventh day

Creation of the earth and man #4 Of the Sabbath day #2 Days 1,7,8 and 50

Creation of the earth and man #5 Of the Sabbath day #3 Ceasing from the works of the flesh

Creation of the earth and man #6 Of the Sabbath day #4 Mosaic codes, Sabbaths and Sunday

Creation of the earth and man #7 Of the Sabbath day #5 Respecting the day on which Christ Jesus rose from the dead

Creation of the earth and man #8 Of the Sabbath day #6 If it be necessary to keep Sunday

Were Gentiles excluded from entering the synagogue?

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Additional reading

  1. Condemnation of the World and Illustration of Justification
  2. Why Sabbaths or Sabbath plural “shabbatot”
  3. Holy Sabbath
  4. Do we need to keep the Sabbath
  5. Are Christians required to keep the seventh day Sabbath?
  6. The Sabbath: Is it a special day for Christians?
  7. Sunday and the Sabbath (Pdf doc)
  8. We’re allowed to willfully break the Law of Moses
  9. Seven full weeks or seven completed Sabbaths and ascension of Jesus
  10. Communion and day of worship
  11. More looking for similarities
  12. Bible, helmet of health, salvation and sword of the spirit
  13. Solution for Willing hearts filled with gifts
  14. Promise given in Garden of Eden
  15. The one who set the standard
  16. Mediator
  17. Actions to be a reflection of openness of heart
  18. Atonement and the race been bought
  19. Running the battle
  20. Glory of God appearing in our character
  21. Get Your Wonderful Disease-proof Human Body

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Further reading:

  • Did Jesus teach the Law of the Old Testament to the Jews?
  • What are we gonna do with this Torah?
  • A Case For Sabbath Observance
  • Keeping the Old Testament Law
  • You Are Judged According to Your Beliefs
  • Tithing
  • Shabbat Nachamu (thejc.com)
    The Shabbat after Tishah b’Av is called Shabbat Nachamu, meaning the Shabbat of comfort. It is named after the first words of the haftarah from Isaiah 40, “Comfort, comfort my people”.
    After the deepening mourning of the three weeks for the Temples’ destruction leading up to Tishah b’Av, (culminating in not eating meat or bathing in the days preceding the fast), this Shabbat brings comfort and relief.
  • Parsha Emor: Is There A Shabbat In Other Realms? (jewishpress.com)
    In our Torah reading for holidays, we not only recite the laws of holidays, we include Shabbat, and oddest of all, some laws about sacrificing animals. What do all these laws have to do with one another? In this video, Rabbi Fohrman makes a fascinating argument about how Shabbat works and shows that there are shabbatot in different realms.
  • Shabbat Chol Hamo’ed Pesach (thejc.com)
    In general, it is fair to characterise the Torah commentators of the Middle Ages such as Rashi, Avraham ibn Ezra or Ramban as looking to provide the real meaning of the text.
    This contrasts with the Chasidic writers of the last 300 years, who often afford themselves considerable latitude and allow the words of the Torah to soar and lead us to a truth and meaning well beyond the original context. Such interpretations may not obviously explain the literal meaning of the words but can be powerful insights into our spiritual lives.
  • The Early Christians of Philippi (catholicexchange.com)
    Lydia was a business woman who dealt in purple cloth – she is therefore sometimes referred to as “Lydia Purpuraria” – Lydia the Purple-Seller.  She evidently had roots in Asia Minor (Turkey) for she was said to be of Thyatira … an ancient city there (in a region curiously called “Lydia”).  After being baptized, Lydia generously let her home in Philippi be
  • Note on the Physical Land of Israel: Who Inherits the Land of Israel – Christian or Jew? (ilyston.wordpress.com)
    This irrevocable promise to the seed of Abraham has been expanded.  It is no longer bound to the land of Palestine.  In Romans 4:13, we find that Paul states that Abraham is the “heir of the world.”  This is also stated in Psalms 25:13: “His soul shall dwell at ease; and his seed shall inherit the earth” (Cf. Psalm 37:9, 11, 27).   Thus, it would seem that the promise of the land has extended to the entire world.
    This is not merely a Pauline distinctive.  We also find this idea in Jewish intertestamental writings.