Bringing radical thoughts worth pondering (A blog of poriruachurch.com)
I bought a box of 24 gift Bibles last month for the church to give away to those who do not have a copy of God’s word. It’s a blessing to be able to get nice copies of Scripture so easily and cheaply these days. When I inspected the first one, I was surprised to see a list of the Ten Commandments from the Law of Moses in the front cover right before the dedication page. Out of all the passages in the Bible, why did they choose to highlight the Ten Commandments? I wondered.
After God delivered the nation of Israel out of Egyptian slavery, He gave the nation a covenant (testament) through Moses.
Then Moses summoned all Israel and said to them: “Hear, O Israel, the statutes and the ordinances which I am speaking today in your hearing, that you may learn them and observe them carefully. The Lord our God made a covenant with us at Horeb. The Lord did not make this covenant with our fathers, but with us, with all those of us alive here today.” Deuteronomy 5:1-3.
That covenant was clearly meant for the nation of Israel, and it included the Ten Commandments (Deuteronomy 4:13). Later on, while the nation was still under the Law of Moses, God promised to make a new covenant (Jeremiah 31:31-34). Of course, that new covenant is the law of Christ delivered in the New Testament.
In Hebrews 8, the author of Hebrews quotes that passage from Jeremiah. He also adds a few bits of information for us to consider.
But now He [Christ] has obtained a more excellent ministry, by as much as He is also the mediator of a better covenant, which has been enacted on better promises. Hebrews 8:6.
When He said, “A new covenant,” He has made the first obsolete. But whatever is becoming obsolete and growing old is ready to disappear. Hebrews 8:13.
He tells us that the first Law of Moses was made obsolete by the initiation of the new covenant of Christ, which occurred at the cross (Hebrews 9:15-17; Ephesians 2:15). The old Law of Moses, which included the Ten Commandments, is not binding on us today. That might be surprising to many people, since much of the religious world still emphasises the Ten Commandments, because of the morality they teach. However, we must not bind any part of the old Law, unless we’re ready to follow all of the Law, which includes animal sacrifices (Galatians 5:1-4).
For as many as are of the works of the Law are under a curse; for it is written, “Cursed is everyone who does not abide by all things written in the book of the law, to perform them.” Galatians 3:10.
Though the official Ten Commandments are no longer binding on us today, we must realise that the teachings of nine of those ten are also found in the teachings of the apostles and Christ in the New Testament. Therefore, we do not have license to murder, steal, or commit adultery. God is still one, and He must be honoured. The only teaching from the Ten that is not found under discipleship of Christ is the law of the Sabbath Day.
Saturday (the seventh day of the week) is not the special day for Christians. Instead, Sunday (the first day of the week) is, since that’s the day that Christ was risen from the grave (John 20).
On the first day of the week, when we were gathered together to break bread, Paul began talking to them, intending to leave the next day, and he prolonged his message until midnight. Acts 20:7.
Now concerning the collection for the saints, as I directed the churches of Galatia, so do you also. On the first day of every week each one of you is to put aside and save, as he may prosper, so that no collections be made when I come. 1 Corinthians 16:1-2.
Christ’s sacrifice set us free from the Law of Moses. Let’s not “be subject again to a yoke of slavery” (Galatians 5:1). Follow the law of Christ, which gives us freedom, not only from the Law, but from sin (Romans 6:16-18)!
We can still appreciate the Old Testament for what it is, which is a recipe for hope. It tells us where we came from. It tells us how Christ was part of God’s plan since the very first sin. It tells us of God’s power through miracles and prophecy. But it does not give us a recipe for obedience anymore.
For whatever was written in earlier times was written for our instruction, so that through perseverance and the encouragement of the Scriptures we might have hope. Romans 15:4.
And behold, Moses and Elijah appeared to them, talking with Him. Peter said to Jesus, “Lord, it is good for us to be here; if You wish, I will make three tabernacles here, one for You, and one for Moses, and one for Elijah.” While he was still speaking, a bright cloud overshadowed them, and behold, a voice out of the cloud said, “This is My beloved Son, with whom I am well-pleased; listen to Him!” Matthew 17:3-5.
I love you with the love of the Lord,