Summary: The Torah of Moses is good and relevant to the New Covenant believer in a variety of ways. It is worth our while to study and apply its principles, even if we do not live under it system.
The Torah of Moses and the Believer
1. Am I getting worried about my memory," says 75 year old Rachel to her best friend Sarah.
"So why is that?" asks Sarah.
"Because every time I go online banking," replies Rachel, "I just don't seem to be able to remember my bank's password. I have to try many times before I enter the right code. Do you have such problems?"
"No I don't, Rachel," replies Sarah. "I've found a way around such problems."
"So what do you do then?" asks Rachel.
"I changed my password to 'INCORRECT'," replies Sarah. "Then, if I enter a different code, my computer tells me, "Your password is incorrect." [http://www.aish.com, altered]
2. Wouldn’t it be great if every time someone misinterpreted the Bible or misused the Bible, God would send a message that says, “incorrect.”
3. As it stands, we must be the judge, and our leaders must be the judge in a church context. This means we ourselves need to understand the Word as best we can. And it’s not always easy.
4. One of the more complex issues is the relationship of the Torah or Law of Moses to the Christian. As far as salvation goes, no issue. And Christians do not become Jews, and are not under the Law. Yet all Scripture is inspired and profitable and relevant to today; the Torah is part of the Word. We can’t just write it off, as many pastors and churches do.
Main Idea: The Torah of Moses is good and relevant to the New Covenant believer in a variety of ways. It is worth our while to study and apply its principles, even if we do not live under it system.
I. Confident Teachers Can Easily Misuse the TORAH (6-7)
A. Some people want to teach before they UNDERSTAND
B. People who exude CONFIDENCE may gain followers, but confident people can be wrong
1. To some people, everything is easy
2. The relationship of the Torah to the Christian — a piece of cake, they say
3. The multitudes are drawn to simplicity
4. A better perspective: anchor convictions & conclusions, but acknowledging uncertainty
5. We should not complicate the simple, nor should we present the complex as simple
C. The obvious problem: PRIDE
Perhaps I Timothy 3:6 was written to address this when choosing new, replacement elders: “He must not be a recent convert, or he may become puffed up with conceit and fall into the condemnation of the devil. “
• Pride turns angels into demons.
• Quickly promoted new believers are not the only pride nurturing events
• Some people use the church as an area to work out their psychological issues
• We all want to feel significant, but there are right ways and wrongs way to go about
D. The relationship of the Torah to the gentile Christian is a COMPLEX issue
Our conclusions may vary between us. Some issues: Is it okay for a Christian to get a tattoo? Does God expect the Christian to tithe? If a man divorces and remarries and his second wife leaves him, can he remarry his first wife? Do Christians need to observe the Sabbath Day, which is Saturday? Is it okay to eat blood sausage or blood pudding?
E. The problem of misusing the Law is a CONTEMPORARY problem
Since Jesus ate kosher, and, since some say, we are to imitate Jesus, must we eat kosher?
Do we have to keep the 10 Commandments to be saved?
II. The Torah is Good, But Must Be Used LAWFULLY (8)
A. As Scripture, the TORAH is both inspired and useful for doctrine (2 Timothy 3:16-17)
“All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, equipped for every good work.”
B. The Torah (Law) was given to Israel and is BUNDLED
• Not given to the entire world, as was the Covenant of Noah (Genesis 9)
1. Part of the Law's purpose pertains to governing God's chosen NATION (Theocracy)
2. Part of the Law's purpose pertains to Jewish RITUAL (Temple Worship)
3. Part of the Law's purpose pertains to making Israel UNIQUE (e.g., kosher laws, sabbath)ß
4. Part of the Law's purpose pertains to God's ABSOLUTE moral standards
5. Part of the Law's purpose is to expose our sin and lead us to faith in JESUS (Gal. 3:21-24)
6. Part of the Law's purpose is to train us in WISDOM (Psalm 119:99-101)
7. Cannot always tell God's eternal moral law except by CONVERGENCE in New Testament
Aaron Blumer writes, “My view is that God's standard of righteousness is timeless and the Mosaic covenant is but one expression of it for a particular group of people for a particular space of time. The entire covenant…has been superseded ... However, some of it's rules are identical to God's timeless standard of righteousness (His Law--in the higher, non-Mosaic sense).”