I Need Your Brains

Vulcan-Mind-Meld

Maybe you can help me. I’m starting a new book project that’s going to take a lot of research and writing, so I need to take advantage of these relatively-free summer months to make a giant dent.

I plan to write a book about Leviticus for millennials. Hilarious, right? It can be for anyone, really. I want the writing to be fun and hard-hitting at the same time. I want to try to avoid any sense of judgment or bias. Never dry. Never slow. And always honest. 

These are the two main questions of the book:

1: Did God really eliminate the Mosaic Law Code in Jesus, or does he still require some of it? If so, which parts and why?

Jesus said that he didn’t come to get rid of the old Law, but to fulfill it. Growing up, I was never given a clear answer as to how Jesus fulfills that Law outside, say, his crucifixion being the ultimate sin offering. How could his sacrifice on the cross fulfill the hundreds of other laws, like the prohibition against cooking a baby goat in its mother’s milk, or not cutting your sideburns, or avoiding clothing with multiple kinds of fabric?

I have heard people say that God still requires the moral law, but not the ritual law. Is that something we made up? Does the New Testament actually make those distinctions clear?

2: What does the Mosaic Law Code tell us about God?

According to Jesus, the same God that sent his Son to serve mankind and lay down his life for their salvation is the same God that told Israel to stone their rebellious children, consider menstruating women unclean, and prohibit homosexual intercourse. Is God schizophrenic? Can he be loving and inclusive one minute, and cruel and discriminatory the next? Or can we blame these apparent discrepancies on the Biblical authors or certain cultural considerations?

Why would God set up such an elaborate program for Israel, then completely change things with Jesus? Was Jesus a natural part of Plan A, or was he Plan B? Didn’t God know that holding Israel to the Mosaic Law would ultimately force him to destroy ten of the twelve tribes, send the other two into exile, and then to take his kingdom from them and give it to the Gentiles? If he knew the Law would only be a stumbling block to his people, why give it to them in the first place?

This book should be a fun challenge, especially when I consider the variety of people that might open it up, flip to certain chapters, and quickly decide whether I am a bigot or a misogynist or homophobic or just a bad communicator or incompetent student of Scripture.

Thankfully, I’m not all that insecure. I’m actually very curious, open-minded and eager to get started. And I tend to like people. All kinds of people. But I love God the most. And I want to honor him with this project above all.

So what should the title be? What advice would you give me? What topics would you like me to explore? What questions do you have? I’m just starting to organize the context, so any feedback would be appreciated.

I hope to see you in the Belfry when things start cooling down here in Mississippi. Which, judging by experience, might be a while . . .

4 thoughts on “I Need Your Brains

  1. Can’t wait it to read this! Both questions you posed are super intriguing. Without knowing more I don’t think I can comment yet on content or structure. But happy to read and give feedback as you go of course 🙂

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  2. While the gentiles were never under that covenant of law (I will bless you if you are obedient and curse you if you are disobedient) there is no evidence that it was ever taken away for Israel. Jesus actually made the law even harder for Israel in Matt 5 where he changes the law from something that is just external and having to do with their actions to where it had to be an inner reality governing their heart and mind. Israel was promised that one day God’s spirit would be placed in them and then they would keep the law and of course that comes through Jesus Christ giving them His life, spirit, and righteousness.

    Some(or all) of those laws such as don’t mix different kinds of fabric(clothing is a picture of righteousness or lack thereof) are very much symbolic of Israel’s coming pure, righteousness. Others such as those who touch a corpse are ritually unclean for 7 days point to the fact that our mortality and death make us unclean, and there will be a new beginning on the eighth day when death will be abolished.

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  3. Hi John,

    This topic is very near and dear to me because it is one of the primary factors God used to bring me to repentance and salvation.

    I have kept pretty much clammed up about it only briefly mentioning at times to other people, but suffice it to say, after really praying, I think it would be okay to start sharing some thoughts on this.

    The reason why I kept my mouth shut though is my current opinion on this subject is perhaps a bit controversial, I have had some issues in the past when trying to share. One, because I am still trying to find the right words myself to describe everything as clear as God taught me, and, two, because my opinions differs from the conventionally taught opinion- bordering controversial, as Christ taught and with The guidance of the Holy Spirt, I am trying to pursue peace without compromising which is quite a thing to try and navigate.

    But after praying about this one, got the okay from God to share a personal journal post on this subject. It is written like a blog post to a generic-Protestant Christian identifying audience and is part 1 of a personal journal series where I am trying to document how God brought me to salvation and is continually by His grace working on me.

    Thanks for making the Belfry a safe place to discuss and help edify each other by the grace of God.

    Journal Entry:
    Did Jesus Really Fulfill the Law of Moses?

    How letting go of the current Judeo-Christian belief system as generally taught in the western Protestant World, turned me into a Christian. By repentance through faith by God’s grace through the Lord Jesus Christ.

    Part 1: House Cleaning

    One thing that I have always learned in church growing up was that because Jesus fulfilled the Levitical Law to the tee, He was counted as perfect before God the Father, and this is why He was a perfect sacrifice. While I completely agree that Christ was perfect, or the fact that He did make the ultimate sacrifice, once I really got saved, this version of how the plan of God for salvation works did not really make sense to me.

    Reason being: I was taught God was all-knowing: past, present, future, and that He was righteous so He did not and does not do anything evil (a.k.a sin). That He was perfect in the sense that He did not make any mistakes which would make sense if He is an all knowing and a righteous God.

    So God would undoubtedly being the ultimate planner and assuming He was perfect in righteousness, His plans would always being morally/ethically good, right. And that they would never fail, right?

    However, the conventionally taught version of the mission of Christ in what I suppose are more or less conventional Protestant Churches today, in my opinion, contradicts the very characteristics of God that they try to highlight. I know I am digging myself a ditch here, but before you think I have gone off the deep end, or write me off as a heretic, I would ask that you would at least give the perspective that this series of articles is dedicated to, at least your consideration. And to think of this alternative, without any presuppositions. And at the end if you still want to disagree, fair enough, I can’t force anyone to change there mind, factually and also even if I could, I don’t think that would be in line with the commandment of Christ to love one another.

    So, if you disagree, just consider this to be my, the writer’s, own opinion. Nevertheless, I think we can agree on a few things even before starting this discussion:

    1. That despite some differences in thought, we should still try to seek for the truth of God without compromising which is why I am assuming that some readers might feel a bit defensive about reading this article. In which case, I totally understand. After all I don’t think either you the reader or me the writer desire to fall into a false doctrine, rather we are both trying to better understand God.

    2. That ultimately, being willing to hear alternative perspectives (even if they do prove to be wrong in then end) is important as we try to seek God, as long as we can agree to do so in a respectful manner. Basically, what I mean by respectful is that we don’t have to be politically correct, but would still bear the words of Christ in mind: “to treat others the way we want to be treated,” when having any potentially controversial discussion. So I think we can both safely say: using this definition of respectful, a healthy discussion is possible, and at the end, we can as brothers and sisters in Christ, still have a cup of tea together with no harm done.

    Also, apologies in advance if you feel I sound facetious or overly sarcastic, it is not an intentional attempt to disrespect hundreds of years of theology and tradition, or belittle anyone, or to make a joke, but rather just the way my thinking process tends to sound when written down when working with issues that require sequencing and/or logic. So I pray you would forgive me of my short comings and bear with me as Part 1 of this series will be about my own personal ponderings that I struggled with prior to coming to salvation.

    Now getting to the question at hand: did Jesus Christ really fulfill the Mosaic Law. And in doing so take away the covenant of works and replace it with a covenant of grace?

    My short answer would be both yes and no, and that it depended on how we interpret Scripture.

    But here goes the long answer: So let’s start by giving a brief overview of the basic teaching that I was taught growing up.

    Israel was God’s plan A and seeing as that didn’t work out too well, Christ and the Church came along as plan B to replace physical Israel with a global community of believers. And that all we have to do is accept Jesus as our personal savior and that He will forgive us of the bad things we have done in life. That He has some ambiguous, amazing plan for our lives (which by the way, I don’t understand why it only seems that there is crazy life changing results for some people’s lives and not others) to use us for His Kingdom that apparently is here but not really because He is coming again a second time to really set it up (whatever that means?).

    And give us a free ticket to heaven where there is no more sickness, dying, stealing, hurting, lying, basically sin since He did all the work and by His Grace we are accounted righteous because of Him sacrificing Himself and taking the punishment due us from God the Father unto Himself. This was the ultimate act of love by Jesus and that we celebrate His horrific death by a roman cross every year for this reason.

    And now living under grace we no longer are required to keep the Mosaic Law with all it is weird rituals of blood sacrifices and killing people for sinning, and trimming beards, and genociding whole groups of people, and not wearing mixed fabrics, and not starting fires on Sunday, excuse me …Saturday, and so on so forth, (oh but we still need to tithe a 10% of our income somehow that God will make us rich then). Because Jesus lived out this “Law of Moses” for us, so we can be seen as perfect before a righteous-all knowing God who demands all this stuff for anyone to be considered righteous and gets really angry if they do not fulfill it, because He is a just and holy God and quite clearly these 600+ laws are the epitome of holiness that none of us mere mortals could ever live up to.

    Oh and by the way, if that wasn’t confusing enough, Jesus was also God in the form of human. That He was not just a really good person like let say Buddha or Ghandi, but He was literally God walking amongst us, but yet 100% human at the same time as being 100% God, and somehow this makes sense because this God that is so jealous that He demands everyone praise, worship, and glorify Him, since He so good, is this super nice and humble Jesus, who by the way is actually the son of this God, but is also God and there is third God named the Holy Spirit, but we as Christians are not polytheistic, no because that would be blasphemy, since there is only one God, but that God is three…

    And this God that is one, but three, (which can apparently be explained by eggs or water), the Father part demonstrated His love for humanity by making everything perfect in the beginning when He, I mean they, or perhaps Jesus…

    (?)

    …decided to create the world, made this Garden called Eden and place the first human which later God separated into man and women into this Garden. Then placed this tree in the Garden (that everyone now days seems to think it had something to do with apples) that the man and woman must not eat of or they will die (but not really sort of but really), so since God is all knowing, good, and perfect, He decided to place this tree that will potentially mess up all of perfection, in the middle of this perfect Garden.

    Then a snake who was actually a devil (why are there devils in a perfect world? Don’t worry we learn about that later, it has something to with angels falling from heaven) decides to tell the woman that this tree will actually make them like God. The woman proceeds to eat it’s fruit and the man as well, then they both realize they were naked the entire time and decided make clothes to hide themselves because they hear God coming to the Garden. He doesn’t know where they are, so God calls out to then and He finds out they ate from this tree that He told them not to (which apparently He put there in the first place, some say as a test, but wouldn’t God already have known they would fail?), then God upon finding out, gets so angry, in a fit of rage curses all His perfect creation and kicks the man and the woman out of the Garden.

    Later they proceed to have two sons, and one slaughters a sheep and offers it to God by barbecuing it and the other fruits and vegetables, and God is happy with the death of the sheep, but not with plants, so He blesses only the one son. The other gets jealous because God did not accept his salad and kills his brother. God proceeds to curse the second brother. This brother runs away and marries somebody even though apparently his parents and him are the only people on earth, then he begins to have children who after many generations becomes a vast nation where they do so many bad things that God starts to get really mad again.

    Meanwhile the man and woman have another son who proceeds to have sons who have sons who sons who have sons who have son who have sons until apparently the children of this third son and the second son (from earlier) become so bad, that God regrets making His creation because His perfect creation gets so tarnished by evil, which the Bible calls sin, due to the man and woman who did not listen to God about not eating from this tree that would mess up perfection that God put in the middle of His paradise, so He decides to wipe everything out with a cataclysmic deluge. A flood that covers the entire world and kills everything except for one of the descendants of the third son and his immediate family who was good. His name was Noah he and his family and two of every animal enter into a giant boat, and God saves this chosen family from the flood he sends to wipe everything out.

    Then God after the fact is like, “whoops my, bad” and promises with a rainbow, He will never send a giant world-wide flood to destroy everything again, of course regional floods don’t count and this promise only is binding with floods and not fire.

    Then God for some unclear reasons decides that it’s okay for people to kill and eat animals now because before the flood everyone was vegan. But they have to drain out all the blood. (Wasn’t there like only two of each animal? How many species went extinct?)

    Then Noah makes a vineyard gets drunk ends up cursing one of his sons. Then all the descendants of Noah, after many generations start build a giant tower with the intention of reaching to God in Heaven so they can over through God.

    God gets mad (again) and confuses the people by changing all their languages and they all fight with each other; get dispersed throughout the world which is apparently where all the world cultures come from.

    Then, God appears to this one dude named Abram and tells him to take his family and move to a land called Canaan, and that God will take away this land from it’s current inhabitants and give this land to Abram’s descendants.

    Abram, proceeds to move around the land of Canaan for all his life, but his wife is barren and so he worries God’s promise will not happen. But God later gives him a son named Isaac when he and his wife are super old, and then God tells Abram, who got a name change to Abraham, to sacrifice the one son God gave him as a test to see if Abraham really loves Him and is willing to do anything for God. Abraham is about to sacrifice his son, when God stops him. And is like, “just kidding, it was a test to see if you would listen to me or not. And you passed, good job!” And gives them a goat to replace Isaac and they kill the goat instead.

    Then Isaac has two sons named
    Jacob and Esau. Isaac liked Esau better and wanted to give him a blessings but Isaac deceives his father with the help his mother, Isaac’s wife, and steals the blessing.

    Esau gets mad and tries to kill Jacob who runs away to his mother’s brother. God tells Jacob he will fulfill the promise He gave to his grandfather, Abraham, by him and that He will be Jacob’s God.

    Jacob works for almost two decades for his uncle before coming home and in the process marries both his uncle’s daughters and two other women and eventually has twelve sons by them.

    Of these twelve he prefers the 11th named Joseph. Jacob makes him a coat of many colors. His 10 other brothers get jealous and eventually sell Joseph as a slave, but after many years as a slave, being falsely accused gets thrown in prison (“You know better than I, You know the way…”).

    Joseph becomes the vice-president of Egypt because he interprets Pharaoh’s dreams. That God will send 7 years of a great abundance of food and 7 years of famine. Joceph proceeds to save the land of Egypt by storing food for seven years then, during the years of famine gives out to the people and all the people of the earth come to Egypt for food.

    Joceph’s 10 brothers eventually show up and he makes a plan to reunite with his family. They don’t recognize him the first time they come to buy food, but then they do the second time they come for food. Joseph forgives his brothers, and Jacob’s, who had his named to Israel, entire family comes down and lives with Joseph, in Egypt for many more generations.

    Then Prince of Egypt happens:

    A different Pharaoh makes the descendants of Jacob into slaves. One of these descendants named Moses gets raised up in Pharaoh’s house, then he later runs away into the desert, gets married and meets God in a burning bush in Mount Sinai. God sends Moses to save the children of Israel, but tries to kill him on the way back to Egypt, but ends up not doing it.

    Moses goes to Pharaoh and is like, “God says let my people go!”

    Then God hardens Pharaoh’s heart, and Pharaoh is like “no, just for that I am going to make your lives harder.”

    Then God is like, “How dare you do that Pharaoh!” And unleashes 10 destructive plagues on Egypt the last ending with the death of every firstborn child, but because the Israelites killed sheep and splatter its’ blood around the frame of their doors, God did not kill the firstborn of His people.

    The Egyptians kick the Israelites out, but God hardens Pharaoh’s heart and he chases after the Israelites because God is like I am going to glorify myself through Pharaoh, and when the Israelites come to the Red Sea. Where Pharaoh tries to kill them, but God parts the sea and they escape Pharaoh through the sea. Pharaoh tries to follow, but the water comes back together, and the Israelites go back to Mount Sinai where Moses goes up to the mountain and gets the ten commandments and whole bunch of other rules from God.

    If they followed all these bizarre rituals and a highly “peculiar” way of life, this would somehow satisfy the need for God’s divine justice. That it was a salvation based on works. Obedience meant God would bless them and disobedience meant God would curse them with unremitting wrath and anger. But seeing as Israel kept messing up despite God getting really angry, they wandered around the desert for 40 years and eventually Moses’s servant: Joshua brought the people into the land of Canaan where God proceeded to tell them to mass murder everyone. (Don’t remember that as part of the Vegetales episode about Jericho)

    But they don’t listen and they let some people live, but proceed to colonize the land anyways, and something about a woman named Ruth marring a guy named Boaz.

    Oh ya, an somewhere along the way, there was a boy named David who went to give his brothers sandwiches because his brothers and the armies of Israel were fighting a people called the Philistines. Where David killed a Giant named Goliath with a slingshot, and God made him king of Israel because his predecessor, King Saul, did not genocide a bunch people God commanded him to and on top of that! God was mad because King Saul was proactive and offered sacrifices to God before the prophet Samuel came.

    Later, David’s son Solomon asked God for wisdom and he built God a Temple in Jerusalem and married thousands of women. Afterwards something about the kingdom of Israel being divided.

    And God kept sending prophet after prophet who kept telling them to stop messing up the rules in the Law of Moses that their ancestors received on Mt Sinai, and get their act together and earn their salvation.

    And almost forgot to mention, the prophets have books too, but no one reads them except something or other in a book called Jeremiah about a “Old and New Covenant” and “That God is going to make every Christian rich and have big houses, fancy cars, perfect supermodel spouses, the perfect kids, and that they will never be sick and die peacefully in bed.”

    But point is the nation of Israel didn’t earn their salvation for the most part, and, finally, got on God’s nerves to the point where He decided to use the pagan nations of Assyria and Babylon against His own people to destroy some of them and carry off almost all the rest into exile, then for destroying His people (which by the way was apparently God’s idea), He punishes the nations of Assyria and Babylon. (But if anything didn’t they obey God? Why would He punish them for something He commanded them to do?)

    Then eventually some guy named Daniel who was thrown in a den of lions prays and gets visions about the future and something about three guys and a furnace. Then another guy named Ezra leads some people back to build Jerusalem again since the Babylonians destroyed it.

    Then a girl named Ester becomes a queen and saves her people from a bad dude named Haman.

    So seeing as the whole Israel project failed God decides to give Heaven to the Gentiles instead of the Jews. Wait I thought they were called Israelites…

    So Jesus comes 100% God and 100% man in the form of the baby in a manger through a virgin named Mary. Y’all know Christmas, right?

    Eventually, he grows up finally, after all those thousands of years is the first person to fulfill perfectly all those bizarre ritual laws that God gave to Moses and so God is really happy about Jesus, his only begotten son. Jesus does a lot of miracles and a super nice guy, but keeps calling out the self-righteous, religious Pharisees who get mad and decide to kill him. One of Jesus disciples betrays him to the Pharisees for 30 pieces of silver, named Judas, after Jesus comes into Jerusalem on donkey and has a dinner of pita bread and wine with his disciples (apparently they are called apostles later for whatever reason).

    He goes to a garden and prays so strongly he sweats blood, then Judas leads the Pharisees to arrest Him. He goes back and forth between various authorities. Is eventually beaten and crucified. Where God the Father excepts His perfect son who completely fulfilled the Law of Moses as a, metaphorically, sacrificial lamb for the sins of all the world and kills Him (apparently this is related to the sacrifice of Isaac?) but raises Him the dead three days later.

    Jesus goes up to Heaven saying to spread the Gospel to His disciples who receive the “Holy Spirit”…

    through …

    …flaming tongues?

    Then apparently Paul who tried to kill Christians at first, sees Jesus in a vision becomes a Christian, and now to know everything we to know about being Christians, today, we just have to read what Paul wrote.

    And Paul says…

    That we are saved through Grace by the sacrifice of Jesus Christ. That God the Father (still don’t get how the whole three in one thing works) showed how much He loved the world that despite it being evil, He threw all His anger, wrath, vengeance, hatred of sin that he had been begrudging, harboring and mulling over and restraining, He finally had someone to let out all his rage on, upon His only Son, the only person/God who ever actually did His will, to get that off His chest. And now God is all about love, but not really because He was always about love and God never changes because He is already righteous and perfect and because He is Jesus and Jesus was all about love.

    (Does that count as child abuse? No! Why not? Because God is perfect. He doesn’t doing anything wrong and has always been all about love.)

    And so by crushing His own Son, it shows how much God the Father loves us since now He sees Jesus and not our sin, oh an by the way everyone sins like everyday and can’t stop, but you got to be like Jesus who was perfect. And since we are now in a “new covenant” of grace and not works it’s okay if we aren’t perfect because Jesus was perfect for us. So anyone who tries to live by the Law of Moses is being a legalist and is and a heretic because it’s all about grace.

    And don’t worry about the Book of Revelations all Christians will be gone by that point in history anyways. It’s called the rapture. Have you ever read the Left Behind Series?

    So, I don’t get it what do we do now?

    Well do you understand your sinner?

    I guess…

    Do you want to ask Jesus into your heart?

    Wait, I still don’t get it.

    He has a wonderful plan for your life.

    How?

    Well, you see everyone has a God shaped hole in the heart and only God can fill it, so if you accept Jesus into your Heart, He will like make your life good and you can go to Heaven, but you got to try and stop sinning, but don’t worry if you do if you just say sorry God will forgive you because of what Jesus did on the cross. Plus you want to go to Heaven right.

    Ya, I guess it’s better than hell…
    What do we do in Heaven anyways?

    Well, like praise God and stuff, but the Bible says, “no eyes have seen and no ears have heard the the good things God has stored up for us.”

    Okay…
    I still don’t get this whole three in one thing?

    You mean the trinity?

    Is that what it’s called?

    Yes, don’t worry we won’t know until we get to Heaven. The only thing you need to worry about right now is making Jesus the Lord of your life that He is the way, the truth, and the life.

    Oh, so if I accept him to my heart He fixes my problems?

    Kinda, like the sin ones, but if we mess up we got to repent.

    But I thought you said we were covered because of His sacrifice?

    Ya, but you still need to say sorry.

    I still don’t really get it.

    It’s okay we have this discipleship training program that will fill you in on what you need to know. So don’t worry, the only thing you need to worry about right now is whether you want to accept Jesus into your heart.

    Uh…
    Okay then…

    GREAT! Just repeat after me:

    Dear Jesus…

    Dear Jesus

    …thank you for dying on the cross for my sins and taking the wrath of God away from me a sinner…

    Thank you for dying on the cross for my sins and taking the wrath of God away from me a sinner

    …please come into my heart…

    Please come into my heart

    …be my Lord and Savior…

    Be my Lord and Savior

    …amen.

    Amen

    That’s it! Welcome to God’s family. So don’t worry, like I said we have a discipleship training program, after church services on Sundays. So ya try to come to church now, service starts at 10am, and we also have Bible Studies on Wednesdays and Fridays, so coming to those can be helpful to, if you can. And you should start reading the Bible. Start with the book of Romans and the other letters of Paul.

    …okay…

    This is the best decision you ever made. I will be sure to pray for you.

    Thanks, I guess…

    See you on Sunday!

    Ya…


    So, again I hope you will forgive me if that was too sarcastic, or sounded belittling, it was definitely, not my intent. That was essentially how I learned Christianity growing up, in the most blunt way possible. But I do hope it makes it clear as to what I was confused about as I grew older through my teenage years and eventually into college.

    I grew up in the church and the first time I remember praying the sinner’s prayers was in first grade after watching one of the Bible movies where the kid in the traditional Jewish clothing comes out at the end, and leads the prayer. While as a young child I did not think to much about it as I grew older and older, especially as life problems came up, I started to wonder and the more I did, the more I came upon blank answers or dead ends. I had learned and thought that Christianity had all the answers and that Jesus would make thing clear for me, to the despair of my expectations, it was not working. Furthermore, I could not understand the struggles I was having in my life. By the time I went to college, I still went to church and went through the motions, and in my heart I really wanted to believe in God, but I constantly doubted and was trapped in mountains of sin. And to some degree excepted it. I just could not get passed all the contradictions in Scripture. It just did not make sense to me. It was not until I got out of college, ironically, by letting go of the way I had learned about the Bible, it was then by God’s grace I started to learn of some preliminary concepts that were not completely different, but began to fill in the gaps of what used to confuse me before. It prompted deeper study because I had to know if this alternative perspective made sense and more importantly if, finally, it was the answers that I was looking for all those years. And even though at that point I did not know much, the little I did, that I know God taught me, helped make sense of why I was a sinner, what was causing my sins and really took me from just feeling 50% guilty and 50% wanting to still sin to 100% conviction, and I wanted to stop and change which led to the first real repentance of my life. It was really freeing. Thanks to Christ!

    That prompted in 2016, where I read the Bible cover to cover for the first time in my life including some early church writings, the Apocrypha and some of the Dead Sea Scrolls, and came to a slightly modified interpretation of the Bible where the message of salvation through grace by faith as a result of repentance was still intact, but in my opinion better explained what Jesus actually did and why He did what He did. It made the message of the Bible from OT to NT even the Apocryphal books found in the Septuagint and some of the Dead Sea Scrolls form one harmonious, consistent picture. That God was, is, and will always be saying the same thing and that He is the same yesterday, today, and forever, and that He is perfect, and righteous, and all knowing and all powerful, and that we can trust His plan.

    But in a weird way, like we talked about way back when, by God’s grace, when I first stumbled on the Belfry, where in your post: inairent, I mentioned: that I, ironically, became saved by accepting that there was some measure of corruption in Scripture and that while some were accidental mistakes in the form of translation errors others were deliberate attempts to corrupt God’s Word.

    How did this conclusion come about?

    From reading the Bible, and am I then saying God did not preserve His word? Of course that is not what I am saying. In fact quite the opposite, He very much preserved His Word, just not the way I originally learned. Interestingly, God tells us who tried to corrupt His Word, what they changed, why they changed it, and how to know what the truth is, in the Bible. As a result, if the reader picks up on this, I believe the reader by the teaching power of God’s Holy Spirit can undo the corruption as they actively read the Bible using the Bible as a guide, and get the true message. The key is understanding “How” Christ fulfilled the Mosaic Law. And, no, it is not just about foreshadowing and metaphorical typing. I also remember talking about this with you another post that we need to see the OT in light of Christ like a pair of 3D glasses.

    As it stands, in my opinion of this topic, the conventional interpretation of Scripture makes it seem that God, despite His ability to know everything is quite a terrible planner and careless. And leaves too many glaring contradictions in other areas as well.

    So thanks for reading all that. I know most Christians probably cringed like 1000 times, but thanks for bearing with me. Plus I hope to go into greater detail regarding this alternate interpretation of Scripture in the subsequent parts of this Series.

    So I will end this article with just a sample of the type of things I am hoping we can discuss as we move forward:

    This is a part of what was taught as “the law of Moses”, during the time of Christ and before, and what is considered a part of the so-called “Old Covenant” in our contemporary-conventional Protestant Doctrine Today:

    (Leviticus 1:1-5)
    The Lord called to Moses and spoke to him from the tent of meeting. He said, “Speak to the Israelites and say to them: ‘When anyone among you brings an offering to the Lord, bring as your offering an animal from either the herd or the flock.

    “ ‘If the offering is a burnt offering from the herd, you are to offer a male without defect. You must present it at the entrance to the tent of meeting so that it will be acceptable to the Lord. You are to lay your hand on the head of the burnt offering, and it will be accepted on your behalf to make atonement for you. You are to slaughter the young bull before the Lord, and then Aaron’s sons the priests shall bring the blood and splash it against the sides of the altar at the entrance to the tent of meeting.”

    (Leviticus 19:5-8)
    “ ‘When you sacrifice a fellowship offering to the Lord, sacrifice it in such a way that it will be accepted on your behalf. It shall be eaten on the day you sacrifice it or on the next day; anything left over until the third day must be burned up. If any of it is eaten on the third day, it is impure and will not be accepted. Whoever eats it will be held responsible because they have desecrated what is holy to the Lord; they must be cut off from their people.”

    (Exodus 13:12-15)
    “…you are to give over to the Lord the first offspring of every womb. All the firstborn males of your livestock belong to the Lord. Redeem with a lamb every firstborn donkey, but if you do not redeem it, break its neck. Redeem every firstborn among your sons.

    “In days to come, when your son asks you, ‘What does this mean?’ say to him, ‘With a mighty hand the Lord brought us out of Egypt, out of the land of slavery. When Pharaoh stubbornly refused to let us go, the Lord killed the firstborn of both people and animals in Egypt. This is why I sacrifice to the Lord the first male offspring of every womb and redeem each of my firstborn sons.’”

    Here is what Jesus said regarding “the law”:

    (Matthew 5:17)
    “Do not think that I have come to get rid of the Law or the Prophets; I have not come to abolish them but to fulfill them.”

    Here is a sampling of the Words of the Prophets Jesus was talking about:

    (Ezekiel 20:21, 24-26)
    (21) “ ‘But the children rebelled against me: They did not follow my decrees, they were not careful to keep my laws, of which I said, “The person who obeys them will live by them,” and they desecrated my Sabbaths…

    (24-26)
    …because they had not obeyed my laws but had rejected my decrees and desecrated my Sabbaths, and their eyes lusted after their parents’ idols. So I gave them up to commandments that were not good and different laws through which they should not have lived by; They were defiled through their own gifts – for they caused all the first born to be sacrificed in the fire—in such that they desecrate themselves. To the end, they would know that I am the Lord.’”

    (Hosea 6:6-7)
    For I desire mercy, and not sacrifice; and the knowledge of God not burnt offerings.

    But they like men have transgressed the covenant: there have they dealt treacherously against Me.”

    (Isaiah 1:11-13)
    “…The multitude of your sacrifices—
    what are they to me?” says the Lord.

    “I have more than tired of your burnt offerings, of rams and the fat of fattened animals;

    I have no pleasure in the blood of bulls and lambs and goats.

    When you come to appear before Me, who has asked this of you,
    to trample down My courts?

    Stop bringing vain offerings!
    Your incense is detestable to Me.
    New Moons, Sabbaths and convocations—”

    (Psalm 40:6-8)
    “Sacrifice and offering thou did not desire; mine ears have thou opened: burnt offering and sin offering thou did not require.

    Then said I, behold, I come: in the volume of the Scriptures it is written of me: that I delight in doing Your true will, O my God: yes, indeed, Your true law is within my heart. ”

    (Jeremiah 7:21-24)
    “Thus says the Lord of God Hosts, unto you the house of Israel, ‘Add your burnt offerings unto your sacrifices, and the eating of flesh and make away with them!”

    For I did not say unto your ancestors, nor commanded them in the day that I brought them out of the land of Egypt, regarding burnt offerings or sacrifices:

    But this did I commanded them, saying, Hearken to my voice, and I will be your God, and ye shall be my people: and walk ye in all the ways that I have commanded you, that it may be well unto you.

    But they hearkened not, nor inclined their ear, but walked in the counsels and in the imagination of their evil heart, and went backward, and not forward.”

    (Hosea 8:11-13)
    “Though Ephraim built many altars for sin offerings, these have become altars for sinning.

    I wrote for them the great things of my law, but they regarded them as something foreign.

    They offer unto me sacrifices as gifts, and eat the flesh thereof,
    but the Lord did not accept them.

    Now he will remember their wickedness
    and punish their sins:
    They will return to Egypt.”

    (Amos 5:21-27)
    “I (the Lord) hate and despise your religious festivals: your assemblies are a stench to me.

    Even though you bring me burnt offerings and grain offerings, I will not accept them.

    Though you bring choice fellowship offerings, I will have no regard for them.

    Away with the noise of your songs!
    I will not listen to the music of your harps.

    Instead let justice pour down like a river: righteousness like a never-ending stream!

    “Do you think that it was to Me that you brought sacrifices and offerings for forty years in the wilderness, people of Israel?

    Neigh, but instead you have lifted up the shrine of your king: moloch, the pedestal of your idols,
    the star of your god: kiyun — which you made for yourselves.

    Therefore you will go into exile beyond Damascus,”
    says the Lord, whose name is God Almighty.”

    (Micah 6:6-8)
    Wherewith shall I come before the LORD, and bow myself before the high God? shall I come before him with burnt offerings, with calves of a year old?

    Will the LORD be pleased with thousands of rams, or with ten thousands of rivers of oil? shall I give my firstborn for my transgression, the fruit of my body for the sin of my soul?

    He hath shewed thee, O man, what is good; and what doth the LORD require of thee, but to do justly, and to love mercy, and to walk humbly with thy God?”

    Jesus’s commentary:

    (Mark 7:7-8)
    (Jesus said regarding the Pharisees, Scribes, and teachers of the law):

    “…and they worship Me in vain,
    teaching the traditions and the commandments of men as if they were the true Law and Doctrine of God.’

    Having neglected the commandment of God, you hold to the tradition of men.”

    (Matthew 23:13-24)
    “Woe to you, teachers of the law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You shut the door of the kingdom of heaven in people’s faces. You yourselves do not enter, nor will you let those enter who are trying to.

    “Woe to you, teachers of the law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You travel over land and sea to win a single convert, and when you have succeeded, you make them twice as much a child of hell as you are.

    “Woe to you, blind guides! You say, ‘If anyone swears by the temple, it means nothing; but anyone who swears by the gold of the temple is bound by that oath.’ You blind fools! Which is greater: the gold, or the temple that makes the gold sacred? You also say, ‘If anyone swears by the altar, it means nothing; but anyone who swears by the gift on the altar is bound by that oath.’ You blind men! Which is greater: the gift, or the altar that makes the gift sacred? Therefore, anyone who swears by the altar swears by it and by everything on it. And anyone who swears by the temple swears by it and by the one who dwells in it. And anyone who swears by heaven swears by God’s throne and by the one who sits on it.

    “Woe to you, teachers of the law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You give a tenth of your spices—mint, dill and cumin. But you have neglected the more important matters of the law—justice, mercy and faithfulness. You should have practiced the latter, without neglecting the former. You blind guides! You strain out a gnat but swallow a camel.”

    Jeremiah concurs as a second witness:

    (Jeremiah 8:8)
    “‘So then how can you say, “We are wise because we have the LAW of the Lord,” when actually the lying pen of your scribes has made it into a lie?”

    How did Jesus Fulfill the Law of Moses?

    Jesus said:
    (Matthew 5:38-42)
    “You have heard that it was said, ‘Eye for eye, and tooth for tooth. But I tell you the truth, do not resist an evil person. If anyone slaps you on the right cheek, turn to them the other cheek also. And if anyone wants to sue you and take your shirt, hand over your coat as well. If anyone forces you to go one mile, go with them two miles. Give to the one who asks you, and do not turn away from the one who wants to borrow from you.”

    In regards to this:

    (Exodus 21:23-25)
    “But if there is serious injury, you are to take life for life, eye for eye, tooth for tooth, hand for hand, foot for foot, burn for burn, wound for wound, bruise for bruise.”

    Which of these interpretations of the Mosiac Torah did Jesus fulfill?

    (Matthew 26:51-54)
    “Then the men stepped forward, seized Jesus and arrested him. With that, one of Jesus’ companions reached for his sword, drew it out and struck the servant of the high priest, cutting off his ear.

    ‘Put your sword back in its place,’ Jesus said to him, ‘for all who draw the sword will die by the sword.’ Do you not think I cannot call on my Father, and he will at once put at my disposal more than twelve legions of angels? But how then would the Scriptures be fulfilled that say it must happen in this way?”

    (Matthew 26:67-68)
    “Then they spit in his face and struck him with their fists. Others slapped him and said, ‘Prophesy to us, Messiah. Who hit you?’”

    So why did Jesus die?

    (John 10:17-18)
    The reason my Father loves me is that I lay down my life—only to take it up again. No one takes it from me, but I lay it down willing. I have authority to lay it down and authority to take it up again. This command I received from my Father.”

    (Matthew 5:43-48)
    “You have heard that it was said, ‘Love your neighbori and hate your enemy.’ But I tell you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, that you may be children of your Father in heaven. He causes his sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous. If you love those who love you, what reward will you get? Are not even the tax collectors doing that? And if you greet only your own people, what are you doing more than others? Do not even pagans do that? Be perfect, therefore, as your heavenly Father is perfect.

    (Matthew 7:12)
    “So in everything, do to others what you would have them do to you, for this sums up the Law and the Prophets.”

    (Romans 13:8-10)
    Let no debt remain outstanding, except the continuing debt to love one another, for whoever loves others has fulfilled the law. The commandments, “You shall not commit adultery,” “You shall not murder,” “You shall not steal,” “You shall not covet,”a and whatever other command there may be, are summed up in this one command: “Love your neighbor as yourself.” Love does no harm to a neighbor. Therefore love is the fulfillment of the law.”

    Bless the Lord who gives grace and mercy to us all. Hope this will be a blessings.

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