• What JGIG Is:

    Joyfully Growing In Grace engages in an examination of beliefs found in the Hebrew Roots Movement, Messianic Judaism, and Netzarim streams of thought and related sects.

    The term “Messianic” is generally understood to describe Jews who have come to believe in Yeshua/Jesus as their Messiah. Jews who are believers in Jesus/Yeshua typically call themselves Jewish/Hebrew Christians or simply, Christians.

    Many Christians meet folks who say they are ‘Messianic’ and assume that those folks are Jewish Christians. Most aren’t Jewish at all, but are Gentile Christians who have chosen to pursue Torah observance and have adopted the Messianic term, calling themselves Messianic Christians, adherents to Messianic Judaism, or simply, Messianics. Some will even try to avoid that label and say that they are followers of "The Way".

    These Gentiles (and to be fair, some Messianic Jews) preach Torah observance/pursuance for Christians, persuading many believers that the Christianity of the Bible is a false religion and that we must return to the faith of the first century sect of Judaism that they say Yeshua (Jesus Christ) embraced. According to them, once you become aware that you should be 'keeping' the edicts and regulations of Mosaic Covenant Law, if you do not, you are then in willful disobedience to God.

    It has been my observation that Christians who adopt the label of Messianic identify more with the tenets of Judaism than they do with the tenets of Christianity. Many reject the label of Christian altogether and some eventually even convert to Judaism.

    1 Thessalonians 5:21-22 says, "But examine everything carefully; hold fast to that which is good; abstain from every form of evil."

    Joyfully Growing in Grace examines the methods, claims, and fruits of the Hebrew Roots Movement, Messianic Judaism, and Netzarim streams of thought and related, law-keeping sects.

    To borrow from a Forest Gump quote, “Law ‘keepers’ are like a box of chocolates - ya never know what you’re gonna get!” The goal of JGIG is to be a resource to help those affected by the Torah pursuant movements to try and sort out what they’re dealing with. Make use of the tabs with drop-down menus found at the top of this site – there’s tons of info there, and it’s very navigable.

    Be sure to click on the many embedded links within the posts here - there's lots of additional and related information for you to access that way, as well.

    Welcome, and may God grant you wisdom and discernment as you consider all of these things.

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12 Undeniable Truths That Drive Law ‘Keepers’ Crazy

Having debated with those in Law-keeping sects for the last couple of  years, the following are some truths that I’ve found to be of particular frustration and annoyance to them as they try to convince me that those in Christ are mandated to ‘keep’ Torah:

1. Yes, it is the NEW Covenant, not the RENEWED Covenant.  To get to the idea of a ‘Renewed’ Covenant, one must play fast and loose with the language of the Scriptures, both Old and New Testament. (See also Hebrew Roots Movement – New Covenant or “Renewed” Covenant?)

2. Paul’s letters, read as written, really do teach that the Body of Christ is no longer under the Law.  (See most of New Testament.)  Paul was given revelation directly from Christ (2 Corinthians 12, Galatians 1, Ephesians 3) and his writings were recognized by the other Apostles as Scripture (2 Peter 3:16).  Christ foretold of greater revelation concerning the Church, making it understood that there was more to come, that the Holy Spirit would reveal much to the Body of Christ through His Apostles (John 16:12-16), making it clear that Torah was not the end all and be all to what God wanted to communicate to His people.  What Christ did matters.

I so tire of Law ‘keepers’ who say things like,

“If there is one person most MIS-understood and most MIS-quoted it is the Apostle Paul. Almost as soon as Paul penned his words, the church began twisting them to say the complete opposite of what he had intended.” (source)

The above is a common mantra throughout the Hebrew Roots/Messianic Judaism/Law ‘keeping’ sects. They accuse the Body of Christ of, at best, misinterpreting Paul’s writings to Her, at worst, outright lying about the words Paul penned to Her.  What is really amazing is that everyone but those in the contemporary HRM/MJ movements and their sects have had it wrong for nearly 2000 years?  How is it that God would allow such a thing?!  Only now He’s allowing His Truth to be known?  Are we really to believe that?

When I heard the Law-keeping rendition of Paul’s letter to the Galatians (one of my first exposures to the HRM), it was almost comical to see how Paul had been turned on his head by those who assert that he advocates Torah observance for Gentiles.  And it was not because I am so steeped in ‘church tradition’ that I say that what I heard from these Law ‘keepers’ was error.  A simple reading of the writings of Paul reveal his intent, and Torah is not central to his writings, but Jesus Christ, His work, and His absolute authority are repeatedly established and hailed as paramount.

Paul centered EVERYTHING he taught on the completed work and authority of Christ.  Torah is a part of what Paul taught, but Jesus Christ – Who He is and what He did – is central to what Paul taught the Body of Christ:

1 Corinthians 2:2
For I resolved to know nothing while I was with you except Jesus Christ and him crucified.

Ephesians 1:15-22
15 For this reason, ever since I heard about your faith in the Lord Jesus and your love for all God’s people, 16 I have not stopped giving thanks for you, remembering you in my prayers. 17 I keep asking that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the glorious Father, may give you the Spirit of wisdom and revelation, so that you may know him better. 18 I pray that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which he has called you, the riches of his glorious inheritance in his holy people, 19 and his incomparably great power for us who believe. That power is the same as the mighty strength 20 he exerted when he raised Christ from the dead and seated him at his right hand in the heavenly realms, 21 far above all rule and authority, power and dominion, and every name that is invoked, not only in the present age but also in the one to come. 22 And God placed all things under his feet and appointed him to be head over everything for the church, 23 which is his body, the fullness of him who fills everything in every way.
 

Then there are those who realize that for them personally to retain any credibility the Scriptures that Paul penned cannot be twisted to such a point where they support their theology and so they choose instead to throw Paul under the bus altogether.

3. God is eternal, Torah is not. Torah is created, not eternal.  There is an attempt in the Law keeping community to attach godly attributes to Torah, when in reality Torah is representative of God’s character and expectations, not an embodiment of them. You may hear the Law ‘keeper’ say things like,

“Torah was before time”, “God spoke creation into being, and what did He use to do that? His Word! What is His Word? Torah! What does John 1:1 say? The Word was with God in the beginning . . . therefore Torah is eternal!”

They will also take that train of thought (right off a cliff!) and say that the Word in John 1:1 is Torah and turn that into “Yeshua is the Living Torah”, totally misusing the Greek word logos John uses for the word, Word.  I used to think this was more of a fringe belief in the Hebrew Roots/Messianic Judaism and Law ‘keeping’ sects, but the belief that Yeshua is the Living Torah is a fairly widespread belief.  They are undoubtedly preaching a different Jesus.

2 Corinthians 11:4-6
4 For if someone comes to you and preaches a Jesus other than the Jesus we preached, or if you receive a different spirit from the Spirit you received, or a different gospel from the one you accepted, you put up with it easily enough.

5 I do not think I am in the least inferior to those “super-apostles.”  6 I may indeed be untrained as a speaker, but I do have knowledge. We have made this perfectly clear to you in every way.

4. The catch-22 problem with the ‘Yeshua is the Living Torah’ doctrine:  If Yeshua is the Living Torah, then the Law DID die.  If the Law died, then it is no longer in effect.  If you are a Law ‘keeper’, are you going to come back and say that the Law rose from the dead?  Are you going to pick the Law apart like you do to ‘keep’ it?  Can you pick Yeshua apart and say that only ‘parts’ of the Word were put to death?  Was the Law resurrected?

 Game over.  Law ‘keepers’ shred their own theology with such an unscriptural doctrine.  Not only is it unscriptural, it’s just plain silly.

Sound doctrine elevates Yeshua to the fullness of God as the Scriptures say He is (Colossians 2:9-17).  The doctrine Law ‘keepers’ believe diminishes Yeshua to a written code.  If you hold to the ‘Yeshua is the Living Torah’ doctrine, the Law died.

The Bible says that Christ is the end of the Law for all who believe (Romans 10:4).  That indicates a change in relationship to the Law for the believer.  It seems that sound doctrine has more respect for God’s Law than does ‘Yeshua is the Living Torah’ doctrine does.  (See also The Law of Christ – Defined and Defended to explore the believer’s relationship to Law in Christ.)

5. It was our SIN that was nailed to the Cross, not just man’s additions to or the curses of the Law. What was blotted out and nailed to the cross? What stood against us?  Convicting us in the sight of God?  That which the Law defines – SIN.  Law Keepers assert that Christ merely nailed human traditions added to the Law or just the curse of the Law to the Cross.  Jesus accomplished so much more than that.

**This entry has been edited after a fellow contender for the faith corrected me.  They say it best, so I’ll post what they wrote to me here (Many thanks CIAN!):

“The LOM did NOT die on the cross, Jesus did, and through HIS death on our behalf, all believers have DIED as well — The LOM is NOT dead, but WE are DEAD to IT (a crucial distinction) … It is our SINS which Jesus took upon His own head on the cross when He became SIN for us (He did NOT become the LOM) — I think that is a pivotal point to keep in the forefront of our thinking as we read this passage & others relating to it … WHAT is REMOVED in Col.2:11 ??? NOT the LOM (!!!) but our body of flesh, our body of dead works, our body of SIN … The decrees certified against us in verse 14 have been CANCELLED out and taken away (Because our Transgressions were forgiven, having been Nailed to the Cross in HIS Body) and the charges have been dropped against US since they were levied upon Jesus (in our stead) who PAID our DEBT BOND, He Himself being the Surety Forfeited because of our DEFAULT.”

Seeing that human tradition carries no authority to convict man in God’s sight and sin does, that it was merely human tradition or just the curse of the Law that  Law ‘keepers’ assert was nailed to the cross  simply fails in light of the facts and the context.  Once sin is washed away, the Law is done with us . . . it has led us to the Cross – and there we become a New Creation!  We no longer have the same relationship with the Law as we did before the work of Christ in our lives!

Colossians 2:9-15
9 For in Christ all the fullness of the Deity lives in bodily form, 10 and in Christ you have been brought to fullness. He is the head over every power and authority. 11 In him you were also circumcised with a circumcision not performed by human hands. Your whole self ruled by the flesh was put off when you were circumcised by Christ, 12 having been buried with him in baptism, in which you were also raised with him through your faith in the working of God, who raised him from the dead.

13 When you were dead in your sins and in the uncircumcision of your flesh, God made you alive with Christ. He forgave us all our sins, 14 having canceled the charge of our legal indebtedness, which stood against us and condemned us; he has taken it away, nailing it to the cross. 15 And having disarmed the powers and authorities, he made a public spectacle of them, triumphing over them by the cross.

6.  The Holy Spirit is perfectly capable of sanctifying the believer apart from observing Mosaic Covenant Law.  The Holy Spirit works righteousness from the inside out, where the Law merely restrains sin from the outside.  Where the Law instructs man regarding his sinful condition, the Gospel transforms man regarding his sinful condition!  The believer walking in submission to the Holy Spirit will not be led into sin.  The believer walking in rebellion to the Holy Spirit will be miserable!

Galatians 5:16-18
16 So I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the flesh. 17 For the flesh desires what is contrary to the Spirit, and the Spirit what is contrary to the flesh. They are in conflict with each other, so that you are not to do whatever you want. 18 But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the law.

Galatians 6:11-15
11 See what large letters I use as I write to you with my own hand!

12 Those who want to impress people by means of the flesh are trying to compel you to be circumcised. The only reason they do this is to avoid being persecuted for the cross of Christ. 13 Not even those who are circumcised keep the law, yet they want you to be circumcised that they may boast about your circumcision in the flesh. 14 May I never boast except in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, through which the world has been crucified to me, and I to the world. 15 Neither circumcision nor uncircumcision means anything; what counts is the new creation.

Does that mean that we as believers cannot learn from the Law?  Of course not!  ALL Scripture is profitable . . .

2 Timothy 3:14-17
14 But as for you, continue in what you have learned and have become convinced of, because you know those from whom you learned it, 15 and how from infancy you have known the Holy Scriptures, which are able to make you wise for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus. 16 All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, 17 so that the servant of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.

7.  Law is not law unless it is enforced.  Those in the Hebrew Roots/Messianic Judaism streams of thought pick and choose what laws they follow. They call it being ‘Torah pursuant’ – doing what they can as they are ‘led’. God’s Law does not allow for this practice! To follow that way of thinking is to cheapen both the Law and the Holiness of God Almighty!

Those who are Torah ‘pursuant’ completely ignore the very important enforcement aspects of Mosaic Covenant Law.  It would seem that the judgement aspects of the Law are part of the jots and tittles, if you know what I mean.  If you want to see some Torah-pursuant back-pedaling, see how your Law ‘keeping’ friends respond when you ask them why they don’t obey Deuteronomy 16 and 17.   (See also Is Law Really Law Without Enforcement?)

8.  The fruit of the Hebrew Roots/Messianic Judaism belief systems and related sects is not good.  While attempting to sway you to a Torah-pursuant lifestyle one may appear to be sweet and nice at the outset, but consistently challenge them on their beliefs with contextual Scripture and look out for the teeth and claws!  (Edited to add:  An example of what I’m talking about can be found in a run of comments from ‘Brandon’ found HERE at JGIG.)  There are several who have lined up to be ‘witnesses against me’ at the judgement because I disagree with mandatory Torah observance for those in Christ.  Apparently I am not alone as one who has witnesses lining up against me . . .

This came to a fellow believer/friend of mine who had a civil discourse with such a person. Then this, after my friend clearly was rejecting Law keeping doctrine (bolding, color, spelling, and exclamation points all by original author):

“According to Heb 10:26 you are headed for the fire!! and this direction you are on will lead to destruction!!! and I am one witness who will testify of your disobedience in front of Yahushua (Jes*s), I pray you will obey YHWH (GOD) before there comes another witness!

And according to 1 Jon [sic] you are a liar so, dream what you will regarding your understanding… but don’t let your dreams keep you from experiencing everlasting life with the Creator of the universe! REPENT NOW BEFORE IT IS TOO LATE! 

My last post to you!

R~

GO AND SIN (LAWLESSNESS) NO MORE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!…….eversasting [sic] “

Other Christians who contend for the Faith on debate forums have had similar threats leveled at them.  Beyond the obvious problems with the above, I’ve had false witness borne against me by Law ‘keepers’ countless times, one has threatened me with legal action for content on this blog, and I’ve received veiled threats because I stand by the completed work of Christ at the cross!

Galatians 5:22-26
22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law.  24 Those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires.  25 Since we live by the Spirit, let us keep in step with the Spirit.  26 Let us not become conceited, provoking and envying each other.

9. Torah is not our access to God and His Character or His promises.  Faith in Jesus and belonging to Him is. There is relationship with God that is available to us that was not available to those under the Law.

Ephesians 3:2-6
2 Surely you have heard about the administration of God’s grace that was given to me for you, 3 that is, the mystery made known to me by revelation, as I have already written briefly. 4 In reading this, then, you will be able to understand my insight into the mystery of Christ, 5 which was not made known to people in other generations as it has now been revealed by the Spirit to God’s holy apostles and prophets. 6 This mystery is that through the gospel the Gentiles are heirs together with Israel, members together of one body, and sharers together in the promise in Christ Jesus.

Hebrews 11:39-40
39These were all commended for their faith, yet none of them received what had been promised. 40God had planned something better for us so that only together with us would they be made perfect.

10. The hermeneutic (a method or principle of interpretation) used by those teaching HRM/MJ doctrines is fluid. There is no stable underlying framework from which those in Law ‘keeping’ sects interpret and teach Scripture. They make use of eisegesis over exegesis, transliteration, Midrash, proof texting, and shift back and forth between ‘Hebraic’ thought and Western thought when it suits their purposes. 

Some will even go so far as to use ‘re-translated Scriptures’ - those translated from what they claim is the original Hebrew or Aramaic New Testament writings.  In other words, they reject the Greek Primacy of the New Testament Scriptures, opening up all kinds of new interpretations of the writings to the Body of Christ as they purpose to substitute specific Greek language that the Apostles actually used in their writings with what HRM/MJ teachers consider to be Hebrew or Aramaic ‘equivalents’.  Key Biblical doctrines affected by this practice are those hinging on words such as justification, repent/repentance, Word, commandment, fulfill, etc.

If it (HR/MJism) were indeed truth, the belief system would be able to stand on a plain reading of Scripture and not have to build all kinds of theological interpretive contraptions to get Scripture to mold to their way of thinking.

11.  Those in Law-keeping sects seek to make the simple complicated.   Notice when someone like me comes along with a simple New Covenant concept like the realities of grafting or the Law of Love how some Law ‘keepers’ go on and on about how I “just don’t understand – here – let me throw 30 different Old Testament passages and a couple of out-of-context and/or misapplied New Testament passages at you to show you how you’re wrong”.

12.  Law ‘keepers’ cannot deal with contextual writings written to the Body of Christ, or their theology falls apart.  It is on the core issues of the simplicity of the Gospel of Jesus Christ that belief systems stand or fall. Who Jesus Christ is, what He did, and that He instituted the New Covenant in His Blood, making a way for all men, through faith in Him, to have relationship with God – these are core issues that are muddied by those in the Hebrew Roots Movement/Messianic Judaism streams of thought.  Some key results from those muddied issues:

  • Jesus for them becomes the Living Torah, not the Living God.
  • The New Covenant becomes the Renewed Covenant, a complete misuse of the language of both the OT and the NT, and indicating a turning back to Mosaic Covenant Law when the Gospel requires nothing of the sort.
  • A perversion of the word repentance, again saying that it is a turning back to God in the form of turning back to Mosaic Covenant Law, not in a turning away from sin and to the Cross and the New Creation that God desires us to become in Christ!
  • It’s always a Jesus + equation for the Law ‘keeper’ . . . for them it is believe on Jesus (Yeshua or however they choose to spell the sacred name at any particular moment), and then there are things you MUST do.  If you don’t you at best will be called least in the kingdom, at worst, be utterly cast out.
  • They are Torah-centric, not Christ-centric, resulting in obvious idolatry, rectified in their minds by the first point noted above.
  • Some resort to mystical interpretations of the Scriptures, using Talmudic sources and methods, not realizing where those things are rooted.  If they do become aware of the mystical roots of such sources and methods, by that point they no longer care, as they are so tied to the Law.  The veil is by then firmly in place (2 Corinthians 3).

truth like a lion

There are more points I could raise here, but a dozen is a nice round number and I thought it would be nice to have a post that comes in under 3000 words for a change!

(Full disclosure . . . added a few more Scriptures.  Clocked in at 3112, 3138, 3401+ words.  Oh well.)

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Other articles of interest:

For more resources regarding the Hebrew Roots/Messianic movements see the Post Index and the Articles Page.  General study helps, discernment, and apologetics sites can be found HERE.   Make use of the tabs with drop-down menus found at the top of this site – there’s tons of info there, and it’s very navigable.

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119 Responses

  1. This couldn’t have come at a more appropriate time in my life.. thank you so much for writing this!

  2. Thank you for the wonderfull TRUTH in GOD’S WORD.

  3. Concerning #1, The “chadasha” of “Brit Chadasha” New Covenant is related to the “chodesh” of “Rosh Chodesh” New Moon. Tell me, whenever there is a New Moon, do we get a totally brand new one, or is it the same moon renewed? Also, the term “new covenant” as relating to a specific section of scripture outside of the Tanakh wasn’t invented until Marcion did so.

    Concerning #2, If so, then Paul would have been a false prophet according to the standard of Deut 12:32-13:5 or Deut 13:1-6(depending on which bible you use). By giving precedence to a miracle worker as evidence of the truth of his message, or of any of his students, by claims of direct revelation or even a miracle, even if it contradicts scripture that came before, is no different than a Mormon missionary who asks the same treatment of his Book of Mormon, or of the Muslim who holds to his Koran. In order to maintain the same standard one judges the truth of Matt-Rev as one would any other body of scripture, one is forced to either believe Paul is a false prophet according to Deut, or else is greatly misunderstood, as Peter himself was apt to write “the things he writes are hard to understand and unlearned men distort his writings as they do the other scriptures.”

    Concerning #3, If Torah is simply ink on parchment, then you are correct. But if Torah is as you say, “representative of God’s character and expectations” then what better representative of G-d’s “character and expectations” is Jesus Christ, the only one who is perfect according to the “character and expectations” of G-d – and remains so?

    Concerning #4, weren’t the first set of tablets broken? Weren’t the new set of tablets written with the content of the first? If there is ever a pinnacle teaching in Torah about the difference between the old and new covenant, it is that the first set of tablets were broken because of sin, the second set of tablets were kept because of G-d’s grace.

    Concerning #5, You won’t get any objection from me here. The Torah serves two functions, one to one person, one to another. To the unbeliever, it only serves to condemn. To the believer, it only serves to instruct in right living.

    Concerning #6, One can test whether or not they are listening to the Holy Spirit as they would any other spirit – by the Word of G-d. If the Torah tells you to do something contrary to Torah, for example, then according to Deut 13, you are not listening to the Holy Spirit, but rather are being tested by G-d to see whether or not you will obey Him or follow after a false spirit.

    Concerning #7, you are absolutely correct. a covenant community can not be ruled by anarchy. Torah makes it clear the responsibility of the Jewish community is to establish courts of law, battai din, to settle disputes. Such orthodox Jewish battai din do in fact exist, and I happen to be privy to live under one such court composed of orthodox Jewish rabbis who are themselves believers in Messiah. If your concern is about the enforcement of capital punishment, bear in mind that it would be a transgression against Torah itself to engage in viglante justice. There are many requirements that must be met, and many of the most important ones can’t be met yet do to circumstances under G-d’s sovereign control. Of course, the same circumcstances prevailed in the Babylonian exile too. Only when G-d allows circumstances to come together through the obedience of His people, will our “judges be restored as in earlier times, and our counselors at at the Beginning.”

    Concerning #8, such tragic proponents for a particular view also exist in traditional Christianity, counter-missionary Judaism, and Islam. Messianic Judaism is not immune, and seeing as how a vast number of those claiming to be Messianic Jews come from Christianity, many forget to leave their “Protestant” baggage behind and still wind up protesting everything, often protesting and berating the very people they are trying to reach. Mashiach I’m sure, you would agree would not act like that. The Holy Spirit reaches people right where they are – not where they will be years from now. To one He is working on them to simply stay faithful to his wife. To another, learning how to keep a kosher kitchen and how it relates to our relationship with Messiah. As you said, you will know them by their fruits. G-d is bigger than orchard of trees producing nuts, not fruit. Don’t dismiss what G-d is doing in your life for the nuts you find yourself surrounded with.

    Concerning #9, the term “under law” is defined according to Torah itself. Deut 29. It means to be literally under the curse of the law. To those under the law, one’s only access to G-d is through the law. To those no longer condemned by the law, but are rather clothed in the righteousness of Christ, their relationship with G-d is obviously only through Christ and his perfect merit. It is this merit of His that allows us to receive His inheritance of eternal life, for the Torah promises life for the one who keeps it – and Messiah keeps it for us! This promise is only valid because it is already defined by the Torah in the first place. Remove the Torah as being valid, and you essentially remove the promise of eternal life – from Him and from all of us as a result! The promise of eternal life can can only be defined according to the Torah (or else its an addition to Torah and would be therefore a false teaching), for it is by the Torah – the Word of G-d, that your promise of eternal life is even valid through the merit of Christ in the first place. You have no document certifying His inheritance otherwise! And if He has no legal inheritance, he has nothing of it to give to us. Therefore the Torah and its promises remain valid, forever, or else our eternal life is not really going to be all that eternal.

    Concerning #10, there is within Judaism a method of interpretation called PaRDeS – four levels of understanding and applying the Holy text as G-d communicated it for our instruction, not one jot or tittle superfluous or meaningless in G-d’s grand design of His Book. Each level of understanding has accompanying rules of logic associated with them that students take years to master. Most MJs are only aware of a few, if any at all of the Jewish rules of hermeneutics; let alone most seminary trained pastors. Yet Matthew, Mark, Luke, John, and all the other writers of the books of Matt-Rev employed the use of those rules to prove the case they were making in their writings, thus not adding anything to the scriptures that came before other than a witness of the things that occurred. We would be foolish not to learn what it is they too would have learned to use as their method of scriptural exegesis, which formed the core of their teaching and instruction as led by the Holy Spirit.

    Concerning #11, there is no #11 in your list.

    Concerning #12, The gospel is simple. If you know where to look. Everything in the Torah is about Messiah and/or our relationship to him, or other’s relationship to him. Often what people lack is foundation. Serious foundation. And this is foundation: the Torah is all about Messiah, all about Jesus. Nothing lacking. Nothing superficial. All of it is about Him. Moses truly did write about Him. The Pharisees did truly seek eternal life in what Moses wrote, but some never arrived at what Moses was writing about. G-d’s Word is not meant to be studied only superficially, or accepted rebelliously, or while protesting what others are doing. I can certainly attest to the fact that if one neglects to learn what G-d has to say about the gospel in the Torah, they essentially set themselves up for believing every wind of doctrine some teacher comes by concerning how to understand Matt-Rev, which are themselves couched in the knowledge of Torah, and which never leave its foundation, and are just as fixed to it as the roof is of a great building.

    • Hi Israel – Welcome to JGIG. Your format was easy to follow, so I will:

      Concerning #1 – The argument you raise is a renewed one, ha. The language of the Scriptures stands against your position. See Hebrew Roots Movement – New Covenant or “Renewed” Covenant?

      As for the concept of the New Covenant originating with Marcion, consider the words of Yeshua Messiah Himself in Luke 22:20, “This cup is the new covenant in my blood, which is poured out for you.”

      Concerning #2 – If one is viewing everything in Scripture according to Mosaic Covenant Law which was written for a specific people for a specific purpose for a specific season, then I guess you could come to that conclusion – and miss the realities of the Gospel. The Promise of a Redeemer came before Torah, however, and Jesus Christ is the fulfillment of that promise. It is the lens of the Gospel, not the lens of the Law, through which the whole of the Scriptures should be viewed, measured and weighed. Paul does that, and as a result uses the Law properly in light of the completed work of Christ and communicates the relationship that those in Christ have to the Law. In the New Covenant Scriptures, Truth is measured not by an obsolete covenant (Hebrews 8:13), but by Who one says Jesus Christ is (1 John 4).

      Concerning #3 – Then I guess I’m right =o). Torah is a written history and law, there is no denying that. Was it representative of God’s character and expectations? Yes. Is also Jesus Christ? Yes, but Jesus Christ is so much more: Colossians 2:9-15 states, “9 For in Christ all the fullness of the Deity lives in bodily form, 10 and in Christ you have been brought to fullness. He is the head over every power and authority.” Torah never claims such a position, nor did God ever give it such a position. Christ alone occupies that position.

      Concerning #4 – Um . . . the second set of tablets were not kept. You’ll have to provide some Scripture to back up that assertion.

      Concerning #5 – Glad to see you agree with me =o). Tell me, how is it that a people who is without sin in Jesus Christ is still under Law according to Law ‘keeping’ doctrine? . . . Which brings us to #6, which is an extension of #5:

      Concerning #6 – Those in Christ are not under the authority of Mosaic Covenant Law. If a believer is not observing Feasts or days or dietary laws, that does not mean that they are following a ‘false spirit’. Those in Christ are no longer under Law. We have died with Christ and have been raised with Him: Romans 6:8-14 says, “8 Now if we died with Christ, we believe that we will also live with him. 9 For we know that since Christ was raised from the dead, he cannot die again; death no longer has mastery over him. 10 The death he died, he died to sin once for all; but the life he lives, he lives to God.

      “11 In the same way, count yourselves dead to sin but alive to God in Christ Jesus. 12 Therefore do not let sin reign in your mortal body so that you obey its evil desires. 13 Do not offer any part of yourself to sin as an instrument of wickedness, but rather offer yourselves to God as those who have been brought from death to life; and offer every part of yourself to him as an instrument of righteousness. 14 For sin shall no longer be your master, because you are not under the law, but under grace.

      Concerning #7 – Now this I found to be a particularly interesting part of your comment, as you completely ignore the obvious differences in the writings to the Body of Christ concerning leadership structure for the Church. According to your web site’s page titled, “Beit Din”, it is stated that, “The orthodox Jewish believers at JerusalemCouncil.org hope to establish a “Messianic Sanhedrin” – a global Torah academy with the aim of establishing a beit din to be a fully functional orthodox Jewish rabbinical court that will be the first of many reproduced worldwide. It is the goal of the Jerusalem Council vision to establish such a Sanhedrin with the most qualified rabbis of our generation, and we ask that those who are interested in helping us establish this service to consider joining us today and turning this dream into a reality.

      It is our hope that the establishment of orthodox Jewish battai din made up of believers will help play a small part in HaShem “restoring our judges as in earliest times and our counselors as at first.” If you can help with this goal, we invite you to join us today!”

      Could you kindly show us where in the writings to the Body of Christ the above is modeled for us? You claim that the Jerusalem Council was such a panel of judges, but in reality, they drew their authority from their appointments as Apostles by Jesus Christ, not as a panel of ‘Messianic Sanhedrin’! There is no judging of sin or doling out of consequences by the Jerusalem Council! Acts 15, listed on your website as “considered historical rulings of the former Messianic Sanhedrin, that is, the Jerusalem Council Beit Din” is in reality an historical account of an event in the fledgling Church wherein Jews and Gentiles were learning to live in unity and love toward each other. Further accounts/instructions for governance, for lack of a better word, in the Body of Christ had to do with giftings and talents as given to individuals in the Body such as pastors, teachers, administrators, etc. Ephesians 4:11-16 says, “11 So Christ himself gave the apostles, the prophets, the evangelists, the pastors and teachers, 12 to equip his people for works of service, so that the body of Christ may be built up 13 until we all reach unity in the faith and in the knowledge of the Son of God and become mature, attaining to the whole measure of the fullness of Christ.

      14 Then we will no longer be infants, tossed back and forth by the waves, and blown here and there by every wind of teaching and by the cunning and craftiness of people in their deceitful scheming. 15 Instead, speaking the truth in love, we will grow to become in every respect the mature body of him who is the head, that is, Christ. 16 From him the whole body, joined and held together by every supporting ligament, grows and builds itself up in love, as each part does its work.”

      We as the Body of Christ need to walk in the model of 1 Corinthians chapters 12, 13, and 14, recognizing that differences in the Body of Christ in the form of giftings and talents are part of God’s design for the functioning of the Church. The design of the Body of Christ as God has set it up is one of necessary differences, (talents and giftings), rooted and grounded in Christ, with the underlying framework being love. That is a very different model than that given under Mosaic Covenant Law.

      All that said, those who claim to be Torah observant simply are not, for many of the reasons stated above. Your website is interesting in that those in your particular stream of thought are making efforts in the area of enforcement of Mosaic Covenant Law, but the reality is that in so doing, you’re denying the reality of the New Covenant system set in place by Jesus Christ Himself.

      Concerning #8 – You wrote, “G-d is bigger than [an] orchard of trees producing nuts, not fruit.” LOVE that line, and may have to use it sometime! That said, fruit is not judged by whether it is ‘nutty’ or not, but by whether it lasts or not: In John 15:16-17 Jesus says, “16 You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you so that you might go and bear fruit—fruit that will last—and so that whatever you ask in my name the Father will give you. 17 This is my command: Love each other.”

      There is a Hebrew Christian who writes about this issue in an article entitled, “Do you obey the Feast of Tabernacles?” who lays out the issue really well. In light of the Gospel and the completed work of Christ and His Great Commission to us, do you think God will be concerned with how you did or did not ‘keep’ edicts and regulations, or how you loved others and reached out with the Gospel?

      Concerning #9 – You wrote, “Torah promises life for the one who keeps it”. Hmmm . . . can’t find a Scripture for that assertion. Blessings for those who keep it, curses for those who don’t, under the Old Covenant, but no, not life. Jesus Christ said, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.” For you to say that Torah promises life . . . well, we come back to that ol’ silly doctrine that Yeshua is the Living Torah again. Nope. Not buyin’ it.

      Concerning #10 – The statement made in point 10 made by me is this: The hermeneutic (a method or principle of interpretation) used by those teaching HRM/MJ doctrines is fluid.

      PaRDeS is used in Judaism – and has mystical roots, thereby disqualifying it for use by believers in Jesus Christ. A description and explanation of PaRDes can be found here at JGIG at “Hebrew Roots Movement – The Use of Midrash”, “Hebrew Roots Movement – The Redefinition of Terms 3 (M-Z)”, and “Doublemindedness in the Hebrew Roots Movement – The Use of Kabbalah and Gematria”.

      Your point does nothing to address the issue of fluidity in the interpretive methods used in the Hebrew Roots/Messianic Judaism/Netzarim streams of faith. All you’ve done is claim superiority by means of a mystical interpretive vehicle.

      Concerning #11 – You wrote, “Concerning #11, there is no #11 in your list.” I looked at your comment and thought, “Well what about that! One of the pitfalls of self proof-reading =o).” Thanks for pointing that out. I did take care of that right away, and have just now been able to respond to the balance of your comment.

      Concerning #12 – Your summarizing comment shows how the Law ‘keeping’ community systematically trades the reality of Christ for the shadow of the Law: “I can certainly attest to the fact that if one neglects to learn what G-d has to say about the gospel in the Torah, they essentially set themselves up for believing every wind of doctrine some teacher comes by concerning how to understand Matt-Rev, which are themselves couched in the knowledge of Torah, and which never leave its foundation, and are just as fixed to it as the roof is of a great building.”

      And that is the primary error of the Torah-for-Christians movements: Torah is not the foundation, it is the shadow, it is that which points to the reality Who is Jesus Christ. The foundation of the whole of the Scriptures is Jesus Christ Himself, from beginning to end, not just ‘Matt-Rev’, but from Eternity to Eternity. You are attempting to replace Jesus Christ with Torah, and knowing that that is wholly unacceptable to believers in Jesus Christ, you then have to pull the ‘Yeshua is the Living Torah’ song and dance to try to make it plausible to Christians who have less than a solid foundation in the Scriptures.

      Truth is that Jesus Christ is the Foundation, period.

      Ephesians 2:19-22 “19 Consequently, you are no longer foreigners and strangers, but fellow citizens with God’s people and also members of his household, 20 built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, with Christ Jesus himself as the chief cornerstone. 21 In him the whole building is joined together and rises to become a holy temple in the Lord. 22 And in him you too are being built together to become a dwelling in which God lives by his Spirit.”

      1 Peter 2:4-9 “4 As you come to him, the living Stone—rejected by humans but chosen by God and precious to him— 5 you also, like living stones, are being built into a spiritual house to be a holy priesthood, offering spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ. 6 For in Scripture it says:
      ‘See, I lay a stone in Zion,
      a chosen and precious cornerstone,
      and the one who trusts in him
      will never be put to shame.’

      7 Now to you who believe, this stone is precious. But to those who do not believe,

      ‘The stone the builders rejected
      has become the cornerstone,’

      8 and,

      A stone that causes people to stumble
      and a rock that makes them fall.’

      They stumble because they disobey the message—which is also what they were destined for.

      9 But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, God’s special possession, that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light. 10 Once you were not a people, but now you are the people of God; once you had not received mercy, but now you have received mercy.”
      Revelation 22:13-17 “13 I am the Alpha and the Omega, the First and the Last, the Beginning and the End.
      14 “Blessed are those who wash their robes, that they may have the right to the tree of life and may go through the gates into the city. 15 Outside are the dogs, those who practice magic arts, the sexually immoral, the murderers, the idolaters and everyone who loves and practices falsehood.

      16 “I, Jesus, have sent my angel to give you this testimony for the churches. I am the Root and the Offspring of David, and the bright Morning Star.”

      17 The Spirit and the bride say, “Come!” And let the one who hears say, “Come!” Let the one who is thirsty come; and let the one who wishes take the free gift of the water of life.”
      -JGIG

    • I haven’t read past #5 The LOM (Law Of Moses) to my understanding is not dead to the believer. If it were, we would be free to go and do whatever was right in our own minds but GOD in His mercy holds the reins.

      I noticed after God saved me that the things that I use to find pleasure in was not pleasure anymore nor was it bringing glory to the one who died for my sins the Lord Jesus Christ on the cross of Calvary, causing a change in my mind and leaving those thoughts and turning from them. His Grace started a work in me that I couldn’t understand which made me very sensitive to causing Him grief and sorrow which made it easy to change my ways. Then He would comfort me as a mother comforts her chilled when he is hurting. The swearing left along with the drinking and as I was reading the Bible I noticed the things that I was not doing anymore like speeding, obeying the laws of the land, listening to others as they spoke, a care for others, very sensitive to other peoples feelings. There was always one thing that kept bothering me and that was the Sabbath. I couldn’t find any scripture for Sunday worship. There were so many against it. I listen to man but in my heart I couldn’t settle it. This saying “A mind that’s changed against it’s will is of the same opinion still” kept working with me. After 27 years I crossed over to what the Bible said, not man, and then I understood what it meant to suffer reproach for Christ. As long as I was going along with the tradition of men showed that I really didn’t care about what God said in His word. If as Christian’s we are DEAD to the LOM, them why does it affect us still? We continue to make excuses to justify ourself and do the tradition of men because we love the praises of men rather them the praises which come from God only.

      Luke 16:31 If they hear not Moses and the prophets, neither will they be persuaded, though one rose from the dead. We have one who did rise from the dead, the Lord Jesus Christ, but very few really care because they love their own traditions and hear their own praises. Isn’t God’s Mercy Great? Trusting the Lord, Georges Guerette

      • # 7 Duet 7 & 8 Have you ever been to there ceremonies? I would have to assume that you have no idea of what you are talking about except to listen to what others say who do not keep these ceremonies to the best of their understandings. This is called backbiting. I know a group who go through this practice very diligently. They start a week early so they will be done on time. They go through their homes cleaning their homes with much diligence to deleaven their homes with a fine tooth come (an expression). The only thing they don’t do is the sacrifice except to lift up their hand to God and thank Him for His gift of eternal life. You ought to be ashamed of yourself judging another man’s servant. They enforce this ceremony which you call law in their heart before God who judges the quick and the dead. I would say this is the best Enforcer. Funny how when you do the Law you say we ‘do’ the Law for God and want to honour Him but when others do the Law they are Law Keepers. Use righteous judgment, for judgement must begin in the house of God.

        I also read in another section that God knows your heart. Well I have to agree with you and so does anyone else who reads these comments. Jer 17:9 The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked: who can know it? 10 I the LORD search the heart, I try the reins, even to give every man according to his ways, and according to the fruit of his doings. Trusting the Lord and spare not the rod for their crying, georges

        • Sorry so long to reply –

          Yes, I am familiar with how those who purport to ‘keep’ the Law conduct their ‘ceremonies’, and they do not do so AS COMMANDED BY GOD. That in itself is a violation of Torah Law. The Law does not make allowances for ‘do you best’. God says, “Do ALL that I have commanded you this day.”! God has made it so that the Law CANNOT be kept after the work of Christ; it is only THROUGH CHRIST that we can be pleasing and righteous before God now.

          As for the heart being deceitful, yes. But what of the heart redeemed by Christ? A heart of flesh, not of stone as promised, yes? A New Creation as stated in Scripture, yes?

          What I find curious about your post is that you perceive God as merciful when it comes to keeping His Laws in a flawed way, yet will not spare the rod for those who rely on the work of Christ and understand that they are under New Covenant Law and no longer bound to edicts and regulations found in Old Covenant Law. Curious.

          -JGIG

      • Georges, the first part of your post is a testimony as to why Old Covenant Laws are not binding on those in Christ; the Holy Spirit leads us into right actions – and not only right actions – but a right heart and mind, loving those around us actively, not just not doing the things that we shouldn’t do =o).

        As for your convictions about keeping a seventh-day Sabbath – if you are convinced in your mind that that is what you should do, then that is what you should do (Romans 14)!

        As for the position I have come to, you can read several articles on the Sabbath HERE, under the letter ‘S’. I don’t post them to try to convince you to go against you conscience, but to explain how I and many others who do not believe we are bound to a seventh-day Sabbath reach that conclusion. You should do as you feel led.

        Blessings,
        -JGIG

      • This is because the Law of Moses is the Law of Jesus, the Law of Christ, the Law of G-d. It is the Law for the Kingdom of Heaven, and by it and through it will the King of Kings rule the whole world in the World to Come. It is by this we know that Israel is not replaced by the nations,but rather the nations join Israel – as all believing Gentiles are called to find their nearest Torah Jew (unbelieving or not) and ask that Jew to teach them Torah because Jesus compels them to learn it and walk it (for Jesus says to the gentile woman “salvation is of the Jews” and scripture says of the Jew “The L-rd is our salvation, I shall trust and not fear”), provoking the Jew to jealousy (“you want MY Torah…because of Jesus?!? I don’t even keep my Torah…”)in fulfillment of prophecy, and causing the redemption and repentance of them both. In short, the response of the Church to the gospel should be that of Ruth and those who converted to Judaism in the days of Esther. Sadly, the response has been more like that of Hamaan and Antiochus Ephiphanes for the past 1700 years. It was the conversion of Gentiles to Judaism (Sarai, Rebecca, Ruth) that brought about the appearance of Messiah 2000 years ago, and it stands to reason that the conversion of believing Gentiles to Judaism will be the catalyst for Messiah’s re-appearance in the future.

        • Wow! What?! “All believing Gentiles are called to find their nearest Torah Jew and ask that Jew to teach them Torah?

          Got Scripture written to the Body of Christ after Pentecost for that one, Israel?

          How ’bout this:

          Titus 2:11-15
          11 For the grace of God that brings salvation has appeared to all men. 12 It teaches us to say “No” to ungodliness and worldly passions, and to live self-controlled, upright and godly lives in this present age, 13 while we wait for the blessed hope—the glorious appearing of our great God and Savior, Jesus Christ, 14 who gave himself for us to redeem us from all wickedness and to purify for himself a people that are his very own, eager to do what is good.

          15 These, then, are the things you should teach. Encourage and rebuke with all authority. Do not let anyone despise you.

          And you say that Sarah, Rebecca, and Ruth’s conversion to Judaism is what brought about Messiah’s appearance, and that believing Gentiles’ conversion to Judaism will be the catalyst for Messiah’s re-appearance in the future? Well, let’s take a look: Judaism DENIES Jesus Christ the Messiah. God says there will be a great falling away before Christ’s return . . . so maybe what you say is true, just not in the way you meant it =oP!

          You certainly bring an interesting perspective!

          -JGIG

          • “Got Scripture written to the Body of Christ after Pentecost for that one, Israel?” – sure: “Wherefore I beseech you, be ye followers of me, as I also am of Christ.” – Rabbi Paul, the “Pharisee of Pharisees” to his gentile disciples in Corinth.

            “Judaism DENIES Jesus Christ the Messiah.” Not the Judaism I follow.

            • You mean the same Paul that said this?

              Philippians 3:7-9
              7 But whatever was to my profit I now consider loss for the sake of Christ. 8 What is more, I consider everything a loss compared to the surpassing greatness of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord, for whose sake I have lost all things. I consider them rubbish, that I may gain Christ 9 and be found in him, not having a righteousness of my own that comes from the law, but that which is through faith in Christ—the righteousness that comes from God and is by faith.

              And if you are following a ‘Judaism’ that does not deny Jesus Christ as the Messiah, then you are not following Judaism ;o).

              • The same one, yes! And I follow a Judaism that believes Jesus is the Christ. After all, so did his disciples. Christ didn’t start a new religion. He reformed/restored the old.

              • You can make that claim, but it doesn’t make what you say truth =o/.

                Judaism was far from what the infant Body of Christ grew into in the first century. The whole structure, offices, the giving of spiritual gifts, the welcoming in of Gentiles – and not only welcoming them in, but going out into all the world – all of those things are different from Judaism. Not to mention the Temple rites, ceremonial laws, circumcision . . . all things NOT taught by the Apostles.

                You of course, are welcome to choose the Old Covenant if you wish, but it is clear by a plain reading of the Scriptures written after Pentecost that the work of Christ were not teaching ‘a Judaism’, but a New Covenant, one forged in the Blood of Jesus Christ and empowered by His Resurrection. Things were demonstrably different after the work of Christ. And not just in the sense of reforming/restoring the Old Covenant, but in the sense of fulfilling the Promise made to mankind after the Fall.

                The Old Covenant points to Christ, Christ does not point to the Law; Christ points to New Life in Him. He reforms and restores US to right relationship with God.

              • “The whole structure, offices, the giving of spiritual gifts, the welcoming in of Gentiles – and not only welcoming them in, but going out into all the world – all of those things are different from Judaism.”

                On the contrary, they are Judaism. Perhaps you’ve not studied Judaism?

                “Not to mention the Temple rites, ceremonial laws, circumcision . . . all things NOT taught by the Apostles.”

                On the contrary, they didn’t need to be taught for “Moses is heard in the synagogues every Sabbath.” It was common knowledge. And they were walked in by the Apostles, including Paul who himself testified “I have done nothing against the customs of our fathers.”

                “Christ does not point to the Law; Christ points to New Life in Him. He reforms and restores US to right relationship with God.”

                When Christ is the manifestation of the Law, for in him we find no sin as defined by the Law, it is the Law that points to Christ, and thus when one has Christ they have the personification of the Law. It is by his work alone we have relationship with G-d to begin with, which is evident by the fruit of our obedience to G-d’s Law – for it is not us but Christ living in us that produces that fruit.

              • Two things:

                1) You completely ignore the vast numbers of Gentiles that were coming to faith in Christ in the first century; as a practical matter, there were not enough synagogues in the known world to teach them all Law! Not to mention that Law was NOT the focus in the early Body of Christ; Life in Christ was.

                2) Fruit for you is all about the flesh, your obedience, your establishing your own righteousness, giving birth to fruit such as pride, not the Fruits of the Spirit we see in Galatians 5.

                It’s not all about Law or your obedience to it; it’s all about Christ, His righteousness, and how He imparts His Life to us and through us.

              • On the contrary, Gentiles coming to faith, like Abraham, is a point not ignored in the least, but is rather the centrality of the mission G-d has given Israel. Gentiles were never given a gospel to preach to the Jews. Again, Gentiles were never given a gospel to preach to the nations. The pull of evangelism has always been to bring Gentiles closer and closer to the core of the Jewish nation, so that ultimately their identity and destiny would be the same. If there is anyone in the entire Bible that the modern Church today should consider as its role model in how to respond to the gospel message, is Ruth the Moabitess.

              • Ya know, Israel, I’ve known personally and read many missionaries’ biographies, and the goal has always to bring people into relationship with God through the work of Christ.

                The disciples were given a commission to go out into all the world – all nations, tribes, tongues, and preach the Gospel:

                1 Corinthians 15:1-11
                1 Now, brothers, I want to remind you of the gospel I preached to you, which you received and on which you have taken your stand. 2 By this gospel you are saved, if you hold firmly to the word I preached to you. Otherwise, you have believed in vain.

                For what I received I passed on to you as of first importance: that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, 4 that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day according to the Scriptures, 5 and that he appeared to Peter, and then to the Twelve. 6 After that, he appeared to more than five hundred of the brothers at the same time, most of whom are still living, though some have fallen asleep. 7 Then he appeared to James, then to all the apostles, 8 and last of all he appeared to me also, as to one abnormally born.

                9 For I am the least of the apostles and do not even deserve to be called an apostle, because I persecuted the church of God. 10 But by the grace of God I am what I am, and his grace to me was not without effect. No, I worked harder than all of them—yet not I, but the grace of God that was with me. 11 Whether, then, it was I or they, this is what we preach, and this is what you believed.

                Israel, it’s clear that we are very far apart on what we believe is the Gospel and I don’t see much point in continuing the dialogue with you.

                Grace and peace in Christ,
                -JGIG

        • Israel…..if the Law of Moses is the Law of Jesus, the Law of Christ, etc, etc then by what Law was Abraham made Righteous? Abraham was made Righteous in the eyes of God LOOOOOOOOOOONG before the giving of Moses law on Mt Sinai.
          You seem to be forgetting He(God) made the Promise to Abraham long before the 12 tribes existed.
          Paul, have you ever heard of him?

          • “by what Law was Abraham made Righteous?”

            By the Law of inheritance. After all, it is the Law of keeping Torah that Messiah has eternal life, and by his death does the Torah’s promise of eternal life then become an inheritance for his next of kin: his family – the rest of us who are G-d’s children; and we must choose to receive it in order for that inheritance of eternal life to be legally ours. We receive it by trusting that legal transaction is sufficient for us to have eternal life. It’s as simple as that. It is by Messiah’s merit we have eternal life, an inheritance accorded to us by his death, and proven valid by his resurrection.

          • in short, without the Torah, the Law, Christ’s merit would be worthless and there would be no promise of eternal life accorded to him for that merit, nor to us who receive that merit by faith in his death (and thus legally receive his inheritance-claim to eternal life). In short, without the Torah, without the Law promising eternal life for the one who keeps it, faith which depends then on such accorded merit has no hope.

            • Romans 4:13-14(KJV) For the promise, that he should be the heir of the world, was not to Abraham, or to his seed, through the law, but through the righteousness of faith.

              Galatians 3:18(KJV) For if the inheritance be of the law, it is no more of promise: but God gave it to Abraham by promise.

              Galatians 2:21(KJV) I do not frustrate the grace of God: for if righteousness come by the law, then Christ is dead in vain.

              Galatians 5:1-4(KJV) Stand fast therefore in the liberty wherewith Christ hath made us free, and be not entangled again with the yoke of bondage. Behold, I Paul say unto you, that if ye be circumcised(i.e. follow the law), Christ shall profit you nothing. For I testify again to every man that is circumcised, that he is a debtor to do the whole law(i.e. the whole law….when was the last time you made a sacrifice, trip to Israel?). Christ is become of no effect unto you, whosoever of you are justified by the law; ye are fallen from grace.

              Do you understand those verses? Do the Law, fallen from Grace! Now if you don’t believe in “Grace” or Paul’s teachings then at least state that fact. If you want to be Righteous in the sight of God then follow the WHOLE LAW or follow Jesus in Faith and break the yoke of bondage.

              The Messaiah(Jesus, Christ, Yeshua, Yehoshua, the Mashiach) had eternal life long before Torah, the Law of Moses, was given. Unless you are talking about a different Jesus.

              John 1:1-3(KJV) In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. The same was in the beginning with God. All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made.

              I will say that if you can’t even type the name GOD and replace it with G-d you are under some serious bondage just like ancient Israel. You know that Yoke of Bondage mentioned in the New Testament. Israel I know you mean well but it appears the “Veil” is still over your eyes.

              I would suggest you read Romans and Galatians but I’m sure you already have and missed the important stuff. That is unfortunate but unexpected based on scripture. We Love you just the same and will continue to pray for the lost.

              • I’m not sure I understand your quoting me that Jesus’s merit in keeping the Law is what gets us into the World to Come (and thus why we still need the Law in effect); that that has anything to do with your scripture-only reply about what you probably think is Paul talking about others attempting to gain salvation by their own merit. Are you saying then that Jesus has eternal life by some other legal means – that he didn’t have to keep the Law at all? That he didn’t have to be sinless? You’re losing me here. Please explain your response.

              • “I will say that if you can’t even type the name GOD and replace it with G-d you are under some serious bondage just like ancient Israel.”

                I type out G-d to indicate I am referring to the One True G-d, the G-d of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, and not any other God or gods. It is not a bondage, but a textual designation to eliminate confusion.

                I am also interested in what you mean by the scripture you posted.

              • A capital “G” does the same thing for me =o).

                Big G, The Almighty; little g, anything that sets itself up as a ‘god’.

                Simple.

          • Um… righteousness never came by the Torah. It always came through the blood of Yeshua– from Adam to the last man.

            The thing is– the Torah (i.e. anything God commands) has been around forever. It also never changes or goes away. :/ For example– Torah is accepting the blood of Yeshua. This in no way contradicts or changes any kind of previous revelation. If it does, then by the very nature it is invalid. God can not and does not contradict Himself.

            I think you people are confused about what the Torah does do. Righteousness is through faith. Torah is an act of obedience because we Love Elohim.

            If you love Elohim, you will keep His commandments. This is the greatest “Law” — Love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your might.

            • Accepting the Blood of Christ absolutely changes previous revelation. If it didn’t, Jesus would not be our Perfect High Priest. New Priesthood; New Law (Heb. 7).

              There is no contradiction there, simply a new and LIVING Way:

              Hebrews 10:19-23
              19 Therefore, brothers and sisters, since we have confidence to enter the Most Holy Place by the blood of Jesus, 20 by a new and living way opened for us through the curtain, that is, his body, 21 and since we have a great priest over the house of God, 22 let us draw near to God with a sincere heart and with the full assurance that faith brings, having our hearts sprinkled to cleanse us from a guilty conscience and having our bodies washed with pure water. 23 Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for he who promised is faithful.

              About loving God and keeping His commandments – these are His commandments after the Cross:

              1 John 3:19-24
              19 This is how we know that we belong to the truth and how we set our hearts at rest in his presence: 20 If our hearts condemn us, we know that God is greater than our hearts, and he knows everything. 21 Dear friends, if our hearts do not condemn us, we have confidence before God 22 and receive from him anything we ask, because we keep his commands and do what pleases him. 23 And this is his command: to believe in the name of his Son, Jesus Christ, and to love one another as he commanded us. 24 The one who keeps God’s commands lives in him, and he in them. And this is how we know that he lives in us: We know it by the Spirit he gave us.

              Not confusing at all =o).

  4. You are RIGHT ON! Thank you for a wonderful post. I WAS one of those people and what you say is truth. It is a cult in my opinion and will make you judgmental, feeling better than others, rude and angry…oh yeah, and completely MISERABLE! Praise God (oops! There goes my ‘pagan’ church upbringing using that ‘pagan’ word. lol) He spoke to me one day and pulled me back to truth and the light and set me free to follow in the spirit once more. Keep writing. Excellent work!

  5. CONCERNING #1

    :I am not disputing the phrase “new covenant” as it appears in Greek (since it means “new” as in time, but not a replacement of that which was before), but rather its application as a theological concept that seeks to nullify that which came before. Paul himself said a newer covenant can not nullify one that came before (Gal 3:17).

    I am also disputing calling Matt-Rev “New Testament” since according to Jer 31, (1) when does the “new covenant” begin, (2) and who’s it for, (3) and who’s missing? 1. When “every man knows G-d.” ie at the End of the Age 2. For Judah and Israel (3) and what’s missing is the Gentiles. (4) And I know I didnt answer the question but it is interesting to point out that Torah is written on the heart. (Notice there is also no “Gate of the Gentiles” in the New Jerusalem, but that’s a side point).

    I instead view Matt-Rev as part of “The Writings” specifically called the “Latter Writings” therefore fitting in the “Writings” of the “Torah, Prophets, and Writings” – the Tanakh. The page labeled “New Testament” in your bible, is the least inspired page of the entirety of scripture, and is actually man-made and not from G-d, and should be ripped out from your bible, since after all, some would place that page after John, others after Acts, others at the end of Revelation and yet others not until the writings of the so-called “Early Church Fathers”!

    CONCERNING #2

    “If one is viewing everything in Scripture according to Mosaic Covenant Law which was written for a specific people for a specific purpose for a specific season, then I guess you could come to that conclusion – and miss the realities of the Gospel.”

    :The entirety of the Gospel is found in the Torah. Nothing lacking.

    “It is the lens of the Gospel, not the lens of the Law, through which the whole of the Scriptures should be viewed, measured and weighed.”

    : You would not know the gospel if it weren’t for the Torah. You could neither approve it, nor believe it if the Torah didn’t support it. Otherwise you hand over the keys of legitimacy to every false prophet that comes along with a contradicting and/or additional message.

    “Truth is measured not by an obsolete covenant (Hebrews 8:13), but by Who one says Jesus Christ is (1 John 4).”

    :Heb 8:13 talkes of something becoming obsolete, but not yet. Since no scripture talkes of the Torah as being obsolete, you have nothing to justify by standing here.

    :1 John 4 starts off by talking about false prophets and testing the spirits, yet where does one go to learn what a false prophet is? Certainly not to John – for then how do you know he’s not a false prophet himself? How do you know if John teaching you a true standard to judge “false prophets” by? As a Jew, he is clearly expecting the reader to be familiar with Deut 12:32-Deut 13:6 which is all about how one tests a false prophet. Else John would be giving you his own standard according to his own revelation, which would then be a circular “test” since by definition he would exclude himself as even being testable for being a false prophet, since he would only give you criteria that he passes but “false prophets” don’t. Certainly you don’t want to hold to that method of testing truth when you face off against a relativist, or a LDS missionary.

    CONCERNING #3

    :Israel, the Torah, and the Holy One, blessed be He, are one. Tanya Chapter 4. How is this true? Consider how a man and wife are echad, made possible by the Word of G-d, so then we find this so in the Shema “Shema Israel Adonai Eloheinu Adonai echad.” Shema refers to all of the Torah, Israel, and Adonai our G-d, Adonai, are one. Is the Torah Diety? If you mean the ink written on skins, no. But is the Torah the Word of the L-rd? Yes. And is not the Word of the L-rd the Messiah called Yehoshua (as taught in Deut 31:3 in the Hebrew) the one who crosses over (into the Land) as the Word of the L-rd?

    CONCERNING #4

    “Um . . . the second set of tablets were not kept. You’ll have to provide some Scripture to back up that assertion.”

    :the second set are kept, as it is commanded:

    Deuteronomy 10:2
    I will write on the tablets the words that were on the first tablets, which you broke. Then you are to put them in the ark.”

    and as was done:

    Deuteronomy 10:5
    Then I came back down the mountain and put the tablets in the ark I had made, as the LORD commanded me, and they are there now.

    “They are there now” is a timeless truth since no scripture after this indicates otherwise. Therefore they are still there, and will always be there, forever. The second set ARE kept.

    This teaches us that every one of us breaks the Covenant. But it is G-d who renews it to us. This is the old and new covenant. The old covenant was broken to pieces, the new covenant is kept in the ark forver, same content as the first since a newer covenant can not nullify a previous one.

    CONCERNING #5

    Glad to see you agree with me =o). Tell me, how is it that a people who is without sin in Jesus Christ is still under Law according to Law ‘keeping’ doctrine?

    First: as a believer, you are no longer under the curse of the law – for this is how Deut 29 defines what “under the law” means.

    Second: We are under the Law of Christ. What is this? Every time it is written “And the ‘Word of the L-rd’ came to Moses and said…” – this understanding should change our definition of what it means to have a red-letter edition of the bible, doesn’t it?

    CONCERNING #6

    “Those in Christ are not under the authority of Mosaic Covenant Law.”

    Who’s law? Who gave it? G-d? How? Through the Word, who is Christ. So then, are you saying that “Those in Christ are not under the authoirty of Christ’s law?”

    As explained above in #5, “under the law” as defined by Torah itself in Deut 29 means to be under its curse. Thus “under grace” means to be enabled to do the Law, since it is by grace the Israelites were delivered out of Egypt in their bondage to “serve” G-d. So then by grace we too are delivered from bondage to the ways of this world to “serve” G-d. Our freedom from sin enables us to “serve” G-d, and be “slaves to righteousness.”

    CONCERNING #7

    “There is no judging of sin or doling out of consequences by the Jerusalem Council! ”

    :On the contrary, every community of believers are encouraged to “judge a dispute between believers” 1 Cor 6:4, and this based on the requirements for a judge as outlined in Exodus and elsewhere in Torah.

    Granted the Jerusalem Council doesn’t dole out capital punishment – because that was never its jurisdiction. The Sanhedrin of Israel existed for that!

    There has always been prophesied to exist two sanhedrins, co-existing, with different jurisdictions and resposibilities. Messiah is the Prophet like Moses. So since Moses appointed 70 elders who constituted the ruling body of Israel, and their jurisdiction is that of the nation, believer or not, and capital punishment, teaching the Torah. Jesus appointed 70 witnesses who testified of the Messiah, and their jurisdiction is that over believers, and bringing forth life through the teachings of Messiah which is the Torah anyways (since neither Messiah can add or subtract from Torah or else he’s not the Messiah).

    Therefore “where is this modeled” is answered by how Torah itself describes a proper court. The Torah is truth, nothing lacking, and nothing can be added or subtracted from it (Deut 12:32, or Deut 13:1 depending on your bible.) This is foundational, and is, I think the crux as why you disagree with me, because it appears you believe in a hermeneutic that allows anyone to come along with a “new revelation” that trumps Torah.

    “Further accounts/instructions for governance, for lack of a better word, in the Body of Christ had to do with giftings and talents as given to individuals in the Body such as pastors, teachers, administrators, etc.”

    :Such is already described in Torah what these roles are, and what they do.

    “The design of the Body of Christ as God has set it up is one of necessary differences, (talents and giftings), rooted and grounded in Christ, with the underlying framework being love. That is a very different model than that given under Mosaic Covenant Law.”

    :On the contrary. The Body of Christ has existed since Abel’s day. Moses himself was a believer of Messiah, so as a member of the congregation of believers, when G-d gave him governance, are you saying it was prophesied that such a method of governing would change in the future? If there is no such prophecy or command in the Torah that such a change would happen then why hold to such a belief, if not for an emotional appeal to shirk taking submitted responsibility for how we relate to one another and how we relate to G-d?

    “All that said, those who claim to be Torah observant simply are not, for many of the reasons stated above.”
    :On the contrary, even traditional Christians are Torah observant. They love G-d don’t they, and isn’t that the greatest command of the Torah? Yet you are correct, no one is perfect. Neither does Torah expect you to be perfect (or else it wouldn’t give you the option of bringing a sacrifice before you meet face to face with G-d’s manifest glory in the Temple without getting fried.)

    “Your website is interesting in that those in your particular stream of thought are making efforts in the area of enforcement of Mosaic Covenant Law, but the reality is that in so doing, you’re denying the reality of the New Covenant system set in place by Jesus Christ Himself.”
    :We aren’t denying the reality, we are embracing the reality that Christ is our King, the Torah is his Law, and we are his subjects. As I have been fond of saying:

    All disciples of Jesus have a perfectly Torah observant, Jewish Messiah, who lives in them, and who desires to live through them. My question is, if that is so, then what does that ultimately look like?

    The answer: how Jesus lives Torah. This is where we’re headed. Some in this life just get to partcipate in that identity now and be rewarded for their obedience which is already in addition to the eternal life they have by grace alone through faith alone in Jesus’s merit alone; rather than waiting until after they are dead and such obedience yeilding no such additional rewards.

    CONCERNING #8

    “In light of the Gospel and the completed work of Christ and His Great Commission to us, do you think God will be concerned with how you did or did not ‘keep’ edicts and regulations, or how you loved others and reached out with the Gospel?”

    :Here’s a mind bender. Jesus said “all of the Torah and Prophets” hang from “love G-d” and “love your neighbor.” Thus, all of the Torah is G-d’s teaching and instruction in how to love G-d and your neighbor. If the Torah is G-d’s instruction book in how to love, then do YOU think G-d will be concerned with how YOU did or did not “love” as he instructed us? Likewise, if the Gospel is validated by the Torah, then the Torah teaches the Gospel, so when Jesus says “he who does not teach and does not do the least of these commandments will be called least in the kingdom of Heaven,” do YOU think he’s concerned if you don’t teach the Gospel as validated by Torah?

    CONCERNING #9

    “You wrote, “Torah promises life for the one who keeps it”. Hmmm . . . can’t find a Scripture for that assertion.”

    :Here they are:

    Deuteronomy 6:2
    so that you, your children and their children after them may fear the LORD your God as long as you live by keeping all his decrees and commands that I give you, and so that you may enjoy long life.

    Deuteronomy 32:46-47
    Take to heart all the words I have solemnly declared to you this day, so that you may command your children to obey carefully all the words of this law. They are not just idle words for you—they are your life. By them you will live long in the land you are crossing the Jordan to possess.

    Deuteronomy 6:24-25
    The LORD commanded us to obey all these decrees and to fear the LORD our God, so that we might always prosper and be kept alive, as is the case today. And if we are careful to obey all this law before the LORD our God, as he has commanded us, that will be our righteousness.”

    CONCERNING #10

    “PaRDeS is used in Judaism – and has mystical roots, thereby disqualifying it for use by believers in Jesus Christ.”

    “Mystical” does not mean occultic. It simply means of-a-mystery. Consider the “muesterion” of the Gospel – the Mystery of the Gospel. That’s mystical, yet it’s not disqualified for use by believers. So then, what is mystical about “PaRDeS?” Torah teaches every single rule of PaRDeS. Let me repeat that: Torah teaches us how to understand it! All of the rules of Peshat (Literal), Remez (Hint), Drash (Allegory), and Sod (Secret/Numerical) are found in Torah! PaRDeS is “mystical” in that it unlocks the mysteries of the scriptures in a clear, logically consistent way, all founded on the peshat, or literal meaning of the text first and foremost being the gold standard that qualifies the truth of anything derived from other the other levels of hermeneutics. For example, anything derived from numerical comparison (since all Hebrew letters have a numerical value since there are no “numbers” in Hebrew) can not contradict the plain meaning of the text, or any scripture. It is when people hold to derivations from the deeper levels of PaRDeS at the expense of Peshat, that you get the wacky fringe, and the extremities of Kaballa and new-age of the Madonna kind. But the same is true for any hermeneutical system. If you break the rules, you will be led astray. Don’t break them, and you will be lead into deeper and deeper understanding by the Spirit of G-d into great truths totally supported by all of scripture.

    Matthew is written on a Peshat level understanding of the scriptures. Mark was written with a Remez level of understanding, Luke with a Drash level of understanding, and John, the most mysterious gospel of all talking about esoteric concepts such as “The Word became flesh” and “was In The Beginning with G-d” is coming from multiple angels only seen clearly from a Sod level understanding of certain related Torah passages.

    “Your point does nothing to address the issue of fluidity in the interpretive methods used in the Hebrew Roots/Messianic Judaism/Netzarim streams of faith. All you’ve done is claim superiority by means of a mystical interpretive vehicle.”

    :I absolutely agree that PaRDeS has been abused by MJs, and other groups – but it is that PaRDeS is being abused, not that PaRDeS is wrong or an invalid hermeneutic. In fact, it is a hermeneutic that is completely and totally derived from Torah itself. Torah teaches you how to understand it. If you don’t believe me, look at the Torah in Hebrew. Start at the beginning. Tell me what questions arise in YOUR mind when you look at the first word…nay, the first Letter of the Torah in Hebrew? What does that question and its related questions teach you about Torah and what Torah expects you to do as you read it? What are the next visual questions you have as you read the first word? The first verse? Notice the first break in the text? The order of columns and rows, – are these not all inspired? Everything in a sefer Torah is inspired. What does the crowning mean, and how does it modify the understanding of what TOrah is trying to communicate to you from different angles of questions? Even Jesus referred to such ‘decorative’ crowning as inspired of G-d when he said “not one jot or tittle shall by no means pass from the Torah…”

    It is in asking the questions and discovering yet more questions that you begin to learn the hermeneutic that Torah wants you to use. Every book, break, paragraph, verse order, verse, phrase, word, letter, crown, and space, column – everything is inspired of G-d and thus serves a reason in teaching you that there is more to Torah than just what you initially see with your eyes. It is only by questioning Torah do you begin to see its multidimensional and interconnected and interrelated, echad, one, united, nature. And when you add to that set of questions the foundational question of all “what does this have to do with Messiah?” well… at that point you’ve pretty much stepped into the realm of the Sages and Prophets, and Apostles who came before you.

    CONCERNING #12

    “that is the primary error of the Torah-for-Christians movements: Torah is not the foundation, it is the shadow, it is that which points to the reality Who is Jesus Christ.”

    : You are obviously referring to the use of the word “shadow” in Hebrews, often translated from a Platonic philosophic viewpoint which emphasize that shadows aren’t real, yet the author is addressing Jews, not Greeks. Thus the “shadow” reference refers to the Hebrew use of the term, specifically in relationship between the Tabernacle on earth that Moses built, and the Tabernacle in heaven – where Moses is commanded to make the earthly “in the pattern of the heavenly.” It is important to realize this Jewish concept of a “pattern” and accept that both tabernacles are decreed to co-exist, one not overriding the other, because they deal with different areas of juridiction and application. Since there is no overlap, there is therefore no competition between them – and that is the key that is missed by many who start off with the wrong foundation in approaching that term “shadow” as used by the book of Hebrews and turning it into some sort of theology that eventually nullifies the scripture of Torah as being applicable for “right living” per 2 Tim 3:15-16.

    There is also laced within this Jewish concept of a “pattern” an understanding of what it means to be “echad” – one. The idea in Jewish thought being that as one interacts with the earthly Tabernacle, one also therefore is interacting with the Heavenly Tabernacle at the same time. The service in one coincides with a service in the other. Thus, if as you say the Torah is a “shadow” of Jesus, then from the Jewish perspective, interacting with the “pattern” which is Torah, is just as much an interaction with “Jesus” himself, as the “pattern” in both pictures is earthly deals with earthly, temporary, matters of approaching G-d and being obedient to Him, and the “realities” of both pictures are heavenly and deal with only with heavenly and eternal matters such as one’s salvation. Since the earthly patterns deal with earthly applications and the realities deal with heavenly applications, then there is no overlap between the two jurisdictions, and thus no competition between the pattern and the reality – they both can co-exist, and G-d commands it so!

    “The foundation of the whole of the Scriptures is Jesus Christ Himself, from beginning to end, not just ‘Matt-Rev’, but from Eternity to Eternity.”

    :I agree, but only in 20/20 hindsight, and only because I know what you mean by this – in that Jesus is that from which all else points to. However, if you pick apart your statement, you will find that not even you agree with it, since it’s not “Jesus Christ” that is the foundation of all of scripture except in an ideal and perfect world where no one sins and we know perfectly who Jesus is. How so? In our sin-filled fallen world, one person’s Jesus may not be another’s! What then determines the truth? Scripture itself. Thus scripture itself trumps one’s beliefs about Jesus. Otherwise the Mormons will pull a fast one on you with their “new revelation” which trumps scripture that came before, and Muslims are just waiting to get you to throw out the whole bible for errancy and accept their “beautiful” book.

    “You are attempting to replace Jesus Christ with Torah”

    : On the contrary. We should be qualifying Christ with Torah, or else one has a false Christ. You can’t replace Christ with Torah unless you don’t have the Christ of Torah. Or put another way: you can’t replace Christ with Scripture unless you don’t have the Christ of Scripture. And concerning scripture that comes after Torah: therefore you can’t qualify scripture that comes after Torah unless you don’t have scripture that is in line with Torah. This is true for all books Joshua-Revelation.

    Yet even then this is not so in a fallen world. In fallen world, people disagree what Joshua-Revelation talk about. Thus what really is the truest statement of all of this is:

    If what you believe about Jesus and understand about Joshua-Revelation, is not replaceable by Torah, then either you don’t believe or know Torah, or you don’t have a belief about Jesus and an understanding of Joshua-Revelation that is replaceable by Torah – and thus your belief and understanding would be false according to Torah.

    Since one’s whole hermeneutic is based on scripture, and not on a “burning bosom” or “personal feeling” or what “feels right” or a disbelief that that the Torah is corrupted – then what is one to honestly do concerning a belief about Jesus, or an understanding of Joshua-Revelation that clearly contradicts the Torah, the foundation that came before all of it? Honestly, one must come to the conclusion that if Joshua-Revelation is scripture, then it’s not Joshua-Revelation that is wrong, but rather that their understanding about Joshua-Revelation is wrong, and certainly then possibly the belief in Jesus that is dependent upon that understanding.

    This is a tenuous position to be in, and of course the unbelieving orthodox Jews look at the doublestandard we as believers appear to be foisting upon them to accept.

    “Truth is that Jesus Christ is the Foundation, period.”

    :I agree. Period. Which Jesus?

    Thank for you taking the time to read through my answers to your responses. If you like, we can just focus on one topic at a time if that makes things easier. I think the best topic to talk about is really the foundational crux of our disagreement. Our heremeneutic that the Torah is the foundation and boundary for all truth and revelation, the only means by which any claim to truth and acceptance must be tested against, and the only standard that qualifies the Prophets and Writings (and latter writings of the apostles) as inspired of G-d. This is all based on the verse that says twice in Torah (as if to serve as two required witnesses to the fact) “do not add or subtract from all that I command you” (and the entire Torah is all that G-d commands as explained that if one does it, they live (and who does it? Messiah Yeshua. Jesus. It is in his merit, that he inherits eternal life, and it is by his grace he gives it to us, clothing ourselves with him, like G-d clothed Adam and Eve)).

    Anyways, sorry for writing a book.

    Shalom.

    Israel

    • Hi Israel –

      Regarding #1 – The New Covenant does not ‘nullify’ the Old, it makes it obsolete: Hebrews 8:13 “13 By calling this covenant ‘new’, he has made the first one obsolete; and what is obsolete and outdated will soon disappear.”

      The Law absolutely still has purpose – it shows mankind their sin and points to Jesus Christ.

      You used Galatians 3:17 to prove your point that the New Covenant does not ‘nullify the Old’, however the context from which you pulled that verse has to do with the covenant given at Sinai not setting aside the covenant before it – the Abrahamic Covenant. Then Paul goes on to say, “19 Why, then, was the law given at all? It was added because of transgressions until the Seed to whom the promise referred had come.” Galatians 3:19a

      Until came and went. And the Seed showed up and did His thing =o). And back to Luke 22:20, “This cup is the new covenant in my blood, which is poured out for you.”

      And back to Hebrews 8:13, “13 By calling this covenant ‘new’, he has made the first one obsolete; and what is obsolete and outdated will soon disappear.”

      And the Seed was promised after the Fall, to all mankind.

      And that little page between the Old and New Testaments? Don’t sweat it, it’s really not a stumbling block. In fact, I think it completely appropriate that the fulfillment of God’s ultimate plan for Redemption be set apart by at least one little page . . . A bit of an announcement, if you will.

      Regarding #2 – You say, “The entirety of the Gospel is found in the Torah. Nothing lacking.”

      Yet God saw fit to work beyond Torah and come in the flesh to do the work of the Cross. If there was nothing lacking, as you assert, why would He bother?

      You say, “You would not know the gospel if it weren’t for the Torah.” Really? Tell that to the millions of believers all over the world that have come to relationship with God through Jesus Christ and the story of His Birth, Death, and Resurrection.

      Dogma, meet Reality.

      As for recognizing false teachers/testing the spirits, you again use an example from Scripture that does not support your assertion. 1 John 4 is all about Jesus Christ and Who He is, and who others say He is. John doesn’t even bring Deuteronomy into the picture! Love God and love your neighbor, yes, however in the context of Christ and the simplified Law that He established in the New Covenant. The Old Covenantal system is not a part of what John teaches us to look for or measure by. “Who do you say Jesus is” is the question we must ask those who seek to teach us. If anyone preaches a different Jesus that that of the Scriptures, then they are a false prophet/teacher.

      Regarding #3 – What I wrote about was how Jesus is God incarnate, not the ‘Living Torah’. You came back with some gobbledygook quoted from the Tanya. Sorry, not buying it. Let the reader learn about the Tanya and it’s author HERE and see that the believer in Christ should have nothing to do with it.

      Regarding #4 – You’re using the word ‘kept’ in that the second set of tablets was put away, retained, in a storage kind of way. What I meant when I said that the second tablets were not kept any better than the first was in the ‘keeping of, an observing of the Law’ sense.

      Regarding #5 – You disregard the work of the Cross and what Jesus Christ accomplished there. Christ is the end of the Law for all who believe on Him. In Christ, the Law becomes an obsolete religious system. If you are in Christ, you are no longer under the Law.

      Regarding #6 – You’re trying to make Yeshua the Living Torah again, Israel. Not buyin’ it. Sorry. Torah points to Christ. Christ did the work of the Cross. The religious system that was Torah is now obsolete because of that work at the Cross.

      Regarding #7 – Wow. What you write here is a complete departure from the reality that is the Body of Christ and how God structured her. ANYONE reading through the writings written to the Body of Christ can see that what you teach here is error. Well, I guess not everyone, as I’m sure you have your followers. I just won’t be one of them =o).

      Regarding #8 – But Torah does not teach how to go out an make disciples of all tribes tongues and nations. Torah taught to stay set apart from the world. We are to go out in to the world and preach the Gospel – to go out into the world yet be not of it. That is an impossible task within the confines of Torah Law.

      Regarding #9 – Um, Israel, I was speaking of eternal life. Torah does not claim to offer that. The verses you quoted speak of self-preservation in the flesh. Obey and be blessed. Disobey and be cursed, or worse yet, be put to death. You wrote, “And if we are careful to obey all this law before the LORD our God, as he has commanded us, that will be our righteousness.” Um, no, Israel. Jesus Christ is our righteousness: 1 Corinthians 1:30-31 says, “30 It is because of him that you are in Christ Jesus, who has become for us wisdom from God—that is, our righteousness, holiness and redemption. 31 Therefore, as it is written: ‘Let the one who boasts boast in the Lord.'” You are boasting in the Law.

      Regarding #10 – About PaRDeS: If it’s so great, why aren’t those who practice it (the Rabbis and Sages from different streams of Judaism) flocking to Jesus Christ and acknowledging Him as their Saviour in droves? PaRDeS results in confusing, not clarifying, the Gospel and the teachings of the writings to the Body of Christ. PaRDeS, by its nature of trying to find ‘hidden meaning’ and ‘unique insight’ in every stroke and structure of text ends up seeing things that are not there, and/or constructing what the reader wishes were there.

      Regarding #11 – Well, we know about #11, don’t we =o)?

      Regarding #12 – You wrote, “If what you believe about Jesus and understand about Joshua-Revelation, is not replaceable by Torah, then either you don’t believe or know Torah, or you don’t have a belief about Jesus and an understanding of Joshua-Revelation that is replaceable by Torah – and thus your belief and understanding would be false according to Torah.”

      You have made Torah your god. The balance of your views reflect that position. When it comes right down to it, you preach a different gospel, and a different Jesus than is reflected in the writings given to the Body of Christ. I’ve spent some time at your website and find at best a caricature of what you term as the ‘gospel’, as well as teachings and resources steeped in rabbinic Judaism and Kabbalah. Sorry, Israel. Just not goin’ there.
      _______________

      Hey, I understand about being long-winded. No worries =o).

      Every blessing,
      -JGIG

  6. JGIG, I don’t know who you are, but I appreciate you tackling this problem in such a professional,scholarly manner.

  7. Regarding point 6: “If Yeshua is the Living Torah, then the Law DID die. If the Law died, then it is no longer in effect”

    Your own analogy destroys the very point you are trying to make. Jesus is the WORD made flesh. The Torah is PART OF the Word. If the Torah died as you say, THEN SO DID ALL THE REST OF THE WORD.

    Logic fail.

    Even if you want to say “the Word/Torah died”, how quickly you forget THAT HE WAS RAISED FROM THE DEAD. Thus, the Torah is still in effect. Jesus IS the Torah/Prophets/Writings/Word in the flesh. You cannot pick and choose which parts of the Word Jesus is and is not.

    Again, logical fail.

    If you want to say Jesus is not the Torah, then He is not the rest of the Word either. And before you pull the “logos doesn’t mean written word!!” nonsense, I would ask you, is God’s written Word different from His spoken Word? Are you REALLY trying to separate the written from the spoken?

    Please.

    • Hey there, Captain Obvious. Welcome to JGIG.

      Point six actually has to do with sanctification, not with the ‘Yeshua is the Living Torah’ issue.

      If you say that Jesus/Yeshua is the Living Torah, then you are assigning attributes of God to a written Word. The written Word is a written expression of God, not a physical embodiment of Him as Jesus Christ is. You see, I believe that the Scriptures and Jesus Himself say that Jesus is God in the Flesh.

      You wrote, “Jesus IS the Torah/Prophets/Writings/Word in the flesh.” I didn’t see that you believe that Jesus is God in the Flesh there. So from where I sit, either you have denied the Deity of Christ, or you are equating the written Word with God Himself. Which is it? And how do you back it up with Scripture?

      Logos doesn’t mean the written word:
      logos :
      1) of speech
      a) a word, uttered by a living voice, embodies a conception or idea
      b) what someone has said
      1) a word
      2) the sayings of God
      3) decree, mandate or order
      4) of the moral precepts given by God
      5) Old Testament prophecy given by the prophets
      6) what is declared, a thought, declaration, aphorism, a weighty saying, a dictum, a maxim
      c) discourse
      1) the act of speaking, speech
      2) the faculty of speech, skill and practice in speaking
      3) a kind or style of speaking
      4) a continuous speaking discourse – instruction
      d) doctrine, teaching
      e) anything reported in speech; a narration, narrative
      f) matter under discussion, thing spoken of, affair, a matter in dispute, case, suit at law
      g) the thing spoken of or talked about; event, deed
      2) its use as respect to the MIND alone
      a) reason, the mental faculty of thinking, meditating, reasoning, calculating
      b) account, i.e. regard, consideration
      c) account, i.e. reckoning, score
      d) account, i.e. answer or explanation in reference to judgment
      e) relation, i.e. with whom as judge we stand in relation
      1) reason would
      f) reason, cause, ground
      3) In John, denotes the essential Word of God, Jesus Christ, the personal wisdom and power in union with God, his minister in creation and government of the universe, the cause of all the world’s life both physical and ethical, which for the procurement of man’s salvation put on human nature in the person of Jesus the Messiah, the second person in the Godhead, and shone forth conspicuously from His words and deeds. (source)

      Jesus isn’t merely the written or even the spoken Word of God – He is the essence of God Himself, something that Torah foreshadowed and pointed toward. Bottom line is the Reality is Christ, “For in him [Christ] dwelleth all the fulness of the Godhead bodily.” Colossians 2:9

      Beyond that, let’s get logical, shall we? You assert that Yeshua is the Living Torah. That God’s written/spoken Word is not different from the incarnation of Yeshua. If that’s true, and Yeshua is the Living Word, then if you were to hold the original autographs in your hand, would you be literally holding Yeshua in your hands? Are you saying that Torah was literally nailed to the Cross and then literally rose from the dead? If Torah rose from the dead (okay, this is starting to sound silly to me, but I’ll forge ahead anyway) then why are you not observing every jot and tittle? Do I misjudge you? Are you offering sacrifices in the Temple? How about this . . . If you do believe in the Deity of Christ, and still believe that Yeshua is the Living Torah, then is Torah also God? Is God Torah?

      And I’m being illogical?

      -JGIG

  8. Yes of course Jesus is God in the flesh. Nobody is disputing that. What I AM disputing is this line of logical rot that states that the SPOKEN Word made flesh (Jesus) is somehow DIFFERENT than the WRITTEN Word on paper(Scripture). That is all I am saying. There is no Scripture to back that up. It is pure nonsense.

    Jesus is ALL of the Word made flesh, spoken, written, Torah, Prophets, ALL of it.

    “If you do believe in the Deity of Christ, and still believe that Yeshua is the Living Torah, then is Torah also God? Is God Torah?”

    Don’t be absurd. The Word (Jesus) IS God according to John 1:1. Because the written and the spoken Word are the SAME THING, both were made FLESH. The flesh of Jesus died on the cross, NOT God’s Word. The physical blood of Jesus takes away sins, NOT God’s Word.

    Your dilemma arises because you make no distinction between the FLESH of Jesus and His Divine Essence. His Divinity (ie, the WORD)NEVER died, only His flesh. Your logical dilemma is a false one.

    Can God’s Word (written/spoken, etc) be ANYthing less than part of God Himself? I think not. It is not the words on paper that are divine, it is the CONCEPT and IDEAS behind them that are divine. They are part of God’s very essence.

    That is why Jesus is ALL of God’s Word made FLESH, spoken/written/Torah/Prophets/Writings/NT/OT (and on top of that, He’s God IN flesh), not because these things ARE God, but because they are PART of His character. He is not limited to these things, but they are how we puny mortals relate to Him.

    • Hi Captain Obvious,

      I’m glad that you agree that Jesus is God in the flesh.

      You wrote, “What I AM disputing is this line of logical rot that states that the SPOKEN Word made flesh (Jesus) is somehow DIFFERENT than the WRITTEN Word on paper(Scripture). That is all I am saying. There is no Scripture to back that up. It is pure nonsense.”

      I beg your pardon, Capt’n, but please provide the Scripture that says that Jesus = the Written word of God. What you’re saying is that Torah is the full revelation of God in written form. Well, that’s demonstrably untrue, as God had much more to say to mankind than what is in Torah, wouldn’t you agree? Not only that, but take that a step further: If Jesus is God in the flesh, and Jesus = the written Word, then you are limiting the scope of Who God is to the written Word.

      You wrote, “Don’t be absurd. The Word (Jesus) IS God according to John 1:1. Because the written and the spoken Word are the SAME THING, both were made FLESH.”

      Yes, Jesus is God according to John 1:1. The logos of God is not limited to the spoken Word, the utterances of God, and does not refer at all to the written Word of God. This bears repeating here:

      Logos doesn’t mean the written word:
      logos :
      1) of speech
      a) a word, uttered by a living voice, embodies a conception or idea
      b) what someone has said
      1) a word
      2) the sayings of God
      3) decree, mandate or order
      4) of the moral precepts given by God
      5) Old Testament prophecy given by the prophets
      6) what is declared, a thought, declaration, aphorism, a weighty saying, a dictum, a maxim
      c) discourse
      1) the act of speaking, speech
      2) the faculty of speech, skill and practice in speaking
      3) a kind or style of speaking
      4) a continuous speaking discourse – instruction
      d) doctrine, teaching
      e) anything reported in speech; a narration, narrative
      f) matter under discussion, thing spoken of, affair, a matter in dispute, case, suit at law
      g) the thing spoken of or talked about; event, deed
      2) its use as respect to the MIND alone
      a) reason, the mental faculty of thinking, meditating, reasoning, calculating
      b) account, i.e. regard, consideration
      c) account, i.e. reckoning, score
      d) account, i.e. answer or explanation in reference to judgment
      e) relation, i.e. with whom as judge we stand in relation
      1) reason would
      f) reason, cause, ground
      3) In John, denotes the essential Word of God, Jesus Christ, the personal wisdom and power in union with God, his minister in creation and government of the universe, the cause of all the world’s life both physical and ethical, which for the procurement of man’s salvation put on human nature in the person of Jesus the Messiah, the second person in the Godhead, and shone forth conspicuously from His words and deeds.

      Jesus isn’t merely the written or even the spoken Word of God – He is the essence of God Himself, something that Torah foreshadowed and pointed toward. Bottom line is the Reality is Christ, “For in him [Christ] dwelleth all the fulness of the Godhead bodily.” Colossians 2:9

      You wrote, “Your dilemma arises because you make no distinction between the FLESH of Jesus and His Divine Essence. His Divinity (ie, the WORD)NEVER died, only His flesh. Your logical dilemma is a false one.”

      In that I do not agree that Yeshua is the Living Torah, we will never come to an agreement on that particular point. Suffice it to say that we agree that the flesh of Christ died, not the Essence of God embodied therein. Where we differ is in saying that Jesus Christ is the spoken/written Word of God. Where the spoken/written Word of God is *a* reflection of Who God is and *contains* things which He wishes to communicate to us, Jesus Christ is the *complete* revelation of God to those who believe on Him. Go back to Colossians 2:9.

      Also Hebrews 1:1-3, “1 In the past God spoke to our ancestors through the prophets at many times and in various ways, 2 but in these last days he has spoken to us by his Son, whom he appointed heir of all things, and through whom also he made the universe. 3 The Son is the radiance of God’s glory and the exact representation of his being, sustaining all things by his powerful word. After he had provided purification for sins, he sat down at the right hand of the Majesty in heaven.”

      ‘Word’ in verse three is rhema in the Greek, again, not referring to a written word, but of living utterances:
      rhema –
      1) that which is or has been uttered by the living voice, thing spoken, word
      a) any sound produced by the voice and having definite meaning
      b) speech, discourse
      1) what one has said
      c) a series of words joined together into a sentence (a declaration of one’s mind made in words)
      1) an utterance
      2) a saying of any sort as a message, a narrative
      a) concerning some occurrence
      2) subject matter of speech, thing spoken of
      a) so far forth as it is a matter of narration
      b) so far as it is a matter of command
      c) a matter of dispute, case at law

      Can those things be written down? Yes. Are *all things* held together by Torah? No. Torah is a *partial* revelation of God. Jesus Christ is *the radiance of God’s glory and *the exact representation of God’s Being*, sustaining everything by His *rhema*. If you say that Yeshua is the Living Torah, you attach attributes to Torah that belong to Christ alone. Hebrews 1 does not say, “Torah is is the radiance of God’s glory and the exact representation of his being”, it says, The Son is the radiance of God’s glory and the exact representation of his being”!

      You wrote, “Can God’s Word (written/spoken, etc) be ANYthing less than part of God Himself? I think not. It is not the words on paper that are divine, it is the CONCEPT and IDEAS behind them that are divine. They are part of God’s very essence.”

      Yes! On this we agree! And it is the idea that the written Word is a *partial* revelation of Who God is that I make the distinction between The written Word and the Word made Flesh. Jesus, the Word made Flesh, “The Son is the radiance of God’s glory and the exact representation of his being”. There is no ‘part of God’ there: “For in him [Christ] dwelleth all the fulness of the Godhead bodily.”

      I think we agree more than we disagree on the concept of the Logos. It is in the deification of Torah itself where we differ.

      Great comment!

      -JGIG

      • >What you’re saying is that Torah is the full revelation of God in written form. Well, that’s demonstrably untrue, as God had much more to say to mankind than what is in Torah, wouldn’t you agree?

        The Torah disagrees with you:

        Deut 4:2
        Do not add to what I command you and do not subtract from it, but keep the commands of the LORD your God that I give you.

        Deut 12:32 (Deut 13:1)
        See that you do all I command you; do not add to it or take away from it.

        and

        Deuteronomy 31:24
        Moses finished writing in a book the words of this Torah from beginning to end

        If Moses wrote the Torah “from begining to end” then everything he wrote concerining what G-d commands, is in the entirety of the Torah which is “in a book” – a single sefer, the Torah scroll. Therefore, anyone who attempts to add or subtract from the Torah transgresses the command to not add or subtract from “what I command you.”

        But this is about what G-d commands us. What about prophecy? Prophecy too is tested by this standard. If a revelation from G-d from prophecy contradicts “what I command you (in the Torah)”, then the prophecy is false. As it is clearly explained in the context o:

        Deut 13:1-5:

        “That prophet or dreamer must be put to death for inciting rebellion against the LORD your God.”

        Here Torah defines for us clearly what a false prophet is: one who incites rebellion against G-d, and…

        “That prophet or dreamer tried to turn you from the way the LORD your God commanded you to follow”

        Here the TOrah defines a false prophet as one who tries to turn us away from G-d’s commands… which Deut 12:32 warns us not to add to or subtract from. Even if the prophets words come true as it is written:

        “and if the sign or wonder spoken of takes place”…”you must not listen to the words of that prophet or dreamer” becuase he preaches rebellion (turning away from the commands of G-d).
        – Deut 13:2-3

        No wonder Christians have a hard time evangelizing Jews, yet Christians are commanded to reach the Jew first! Yet how can this happen if Christian hermeneutics demonstrably removes the rug from under their feet by removing the Torah as relevant to understanding the fullness of the gospel and walking rightly?

        Is there any revelation in Joshua-Revelation that changes how one walks before the Lord, that adds or subtracts from Torah? Absolutely not!

        Is there any prophecy about future events that are NOT found in the Torah? I argue that this is not so as well – for I believe that the entire of history is found in the written Torah, for if it is written that Moses wrote all the words of the Torah from “beginning to end” then surly he wrote of his death which is at the end of the Torah. It’s called taking what the Torah says at face value, and agreeing with it, no matter how illogical it may seem to our own limited comprehension. Do we or do we not believe the Torah is divine in origin?

        The Torah is called truth in Psalm 119:142. It’s not called “a truth.” It’s simply Truth. So then, the logic goes, if something is true, then its in Torah – somehow. Our ignorance of how it is in Torah is the only remaining factor in confirming such. The moment we assume that truth can exist outside of Torah, is the moment we have added to or subtracted from its truth.

        What is the Torah from “beginning to end” if not literally from “In the Beginning” to the “End” of this age? Even the great rabbis of old, before our Master came even, understood that the Torah contains the fullness of human history, past, present, and future. We would be fools otherwise to assume we know enough of Torah to completely discount the prophecies of those who claim to be prophets; yet we would be even greater fools to follow them if they ever once led us to rebel against the fixed commands of G-d as instructed in the Torah.

        • Hi Israel,

          I’ll be posting and replying to your other, more lengthy comment later. This one is a good bit shorter, so I’ll respond to it now.

          If what you say above is true, then you reject the balance of the canon of Scripture. Anything else you have to say on the matter has to be measured by that reality. In your view, when the Bible says, law, to you it means Mosaic Covenant Law. When the Bible says, word, to you it means Torah. When the Bible says anything, to you it means Torah. To you, everything is Torah, and Torah is everything. It’s idolatry and you can’t even see that.

          You wrote, “Do we or do we not believe the Torah is divine in origin?” In origin? Yes. Intrinsically? No. Torah is a created entity. It is not itself divine, any more than any other created thing is itself divine.

          You wrote, “The Torah is called truth in Psalm 119:142. It’s not called “a truth.” It’s simply Truth. So then, the logic goes, if something is true, then its in Torah – somehow. Our ignorance of how it is in Torah is the only remaining factor in confirming such. The moment we assume that truth can exist outside of Torah, is the moment we have added to or subtracted from its truth.”

          Our family dog is black. That is truth. To follow your logic, if something is true, it must be contained in the truth that our dog is black – somehow. That we are ignorant of how it’s there is the only remaining factor in confirming such. The moment that we assume that truth can exist outside of the truth that our dog is black is the moment that we have added or subtracted to the truth that our dog is black. Okay. That was completely ridiculous. Both your rendition and mine.

          From the Scriptures, here’s why your’s is ridiculous: “2 Surely you have heard about the administration of God’s grace that was given to me for you, 3 that is, the mystery made known to me by revelation, as I have already written briefly. 4 In reading this, then, you will be able to understand my insight into the mystery of Christ, 5 which was not made known to people in other generations as it has now been revealed by the Spirit to God’s holy apostles and prophets.” (Ephesians 3:2-5) The mystery of Christ was not revealed in Torah. And Hebrews 11:39-40, “39 These were all commended for their faith, yet none of them received what had been promised, 40 since God had planned something better for us so that only together with us would they be made perfect.”

          God did something new and profound in the work of Christ – something not contained in Torah, and only prophesied in types and shadows! If you want to live there, that is certainly your choice. I prefer the Reality that is Christ!

          -JGIG

          • The scriptures do not say that your dog being black is truth. Just because something is correct, doesn’t mean that it’s what the scriptures call truth. Jesus Christ is called Truth. Your dog being black is not called truth.

            “which was not made known to people in other generations AS it has now been revealed by the Spirit to God’s holy apostles and prophets”

            But it was still known. It was not revealed AS it has been revealed before, much like one who has 20/20 hindsight understands things more than one who does not have such benefit. But the mystery of the gospel was known, and men of faith walked in it.

            >God did something new and profound in the work of Christ – something not contained in Torah.

            I challenge you to name just one thing that was new and profound in the work of Christ, anything, that is not contained in Torah. Just one.

            Let me ask you this question too: Can any new revelation from G-d contradict the scriptures that came before it?

            • He established the Body of Christ, the Church:
              Mark 4:7-13
              7 I became a servant of this gospel by the gift of God’s grace given me through the working of his power. 8 Although I am less than the least of all the Lord’s people, this grace was given me: to preach to the Gentiles the boundless riches of Christ, 9 and to make plain to everyone the administration of this mystery, which for ages past was kept hidden in God, who created all things. 10 His intent was that now, through the church, the manifold wisdom of God should be made known to the rulers and authorities in the heavenly realms, 11 according to his eternal purpose that he accomplished in Christ Jesus our Lord. 12 In him and through faith in him we may approach God with freedom and confidence. 13 I ask you, therefore, not to be discouraged because of my sufferings for you, which are your glory.

              Romans 16:25-27
              25 Now to him who is able to establish you in accordance with my gospel, the message I proclaim about Jesus Christ, in keeping with the revelation of the mystery hidden for long ages past, 26 but now revealed and made known through the prophetic writings by the command of the eternal God, so that all the Gentiles might come to the obedience that comes from faith— 27 to the only wise God be glory forever through Jesus Christ! Amen.

              It is clear that the mystery of the Gospel was kept hidden for a season:
              1 Corinthians 2:
              6 We do, however, speak a message of wisdom among the mature, but not the wisdom of this age or of the rulers of this age, who are coming to nothing. 7 No, we declare God’s wisdom, a mystery that has been hidden and that God destined for our glory before time began. 8 None of the rulers of this age understood it, for if they had, they would not have crucified the Lord of glory. 9 However, as it is written:
              “What no eye has seen,
              what no ear has heard,
              and what no human mind has conceived”—
              the things God has prepared for those who love him—

              10 these are the things God has revealed to us by his Spirit.

              Jesus redeemed us, forgiving our sins, not merely covering them with a temporary solution:
              Ephesians 1:7-10
              7 In him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, in accordance with the riches of God’s grace 8 that he lavished on us. With all wisdom and understanding, 9 he made known to us the mystery of his will according to his good pleasure, which he purposed in Christ, 10 to be put into effect when the times reach their fulfillment—to bring unity to all things in heaven and on earth under Christ.

              Jesus made Gentiles co-heirs:
              Ephesians 3:4-12
              4 In reading this, then, you will be able to understand my insight into the mystery of Christ, 5 which was not made known to people in other generations as it has now been revealed by the Spirit to God’s holy apostles and prophets. 6 This mystery is that through the gospel the Gentiles are heirs together with Israel, members together of one body, and sharers together in the promise in Christ Jesus.

              7 I became a servant of this gospel by the gift of God’s grace given me through the working of his power. 8 Although I am less than the least of all the Lord’s people, this grace was given me: to preach to the Gentiles the boundless riches of Christ, 9 and to make plain to everyone the administration of this mystery, which for ages past was kept hidden in God, who created all things. 10 His intent was that now, through the church, the manifold wisdom of God should be made known to the rulers and authorities in the heavenly realms, 11 according to his eternal purpose that he accomplished in Christ Jesus our Lord. 12 In him and through faith in him we may approach God with freedom and confidence.

              Again, Jesus established the Body of Christ, the Church:
              Colossians 1:24-29
              24 Now I rejoice in what I am suffering for you, and I fill up in my flesh what is still lacking in regard to Christ’s afflictions, for the sake of his body, which is the church. 25 I have become its servant by the commission God gave me to present to you the word of God in its fullness— 26 the mystery that has been kept hidden for ages and generations, but is now disclosed to the Lord’s people. 27 To them God has chosen to make known among the Gentiles the glorious riches of this mystery, which is Christ in you, the hope of glory.

              28 He is the one we proclaim, admonishing and teaching everyone with all wisdom, so that we may present everyone fully mature in Christ. 29 To this end I strenuously contend with all the energy Christ so powerfully works in me.

              In Christ the mystery of God is revealed:
              Colossians 2:2-4
              2 My goal is that they may be encouraged in heart and united in love, so that they may have the full riches of complete understanding, in order that they may know the mystery of God, namely, Christ, 3 in whom are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge. 4 I tell you this so that no one may deceive you by fine-sounding arguments.

              Christ is preached in the nations:
              1 Timothy 3:16
              16 Beyond all question, the mystery from which true godliness springs is great:
              He appeared in the flesh,
              was vindicated by the Spirit,
              was seen by angels,
              was preached among the nations,
              was believed on in the world,
              was taken up in glory.

              Christ has saved us:
              2 Timothy 1:9-10
              9 He has saved us and called us to a holy life—not because of anything we have done but because of his own purpose and grace. This grace was given us in Christ Jesus before the beginning of time, 10 but it has now been revealed through the appearing of our Savior, Christ Jesus, who has destroyed death and has brought life and immortality to light through the gospel.

              What did He do that was new and profound? The work of the Cross, that’s what. And then He rose from the dead. And as a result those who believe don’t have their sins just covered, like in Torah, but forgiven. After He ascended, He sent His Holy Spirit to indwell us, and to seal us to Himself.

              How about leadership structure? Pastors, teachers, administrators . . .

              How about the concept of a Body – Many parts, One Body – each ‘part’ operating in its giftings and talents, not everyone living by rote Law, but serving one another in love according to the Spirit. These are all new things in which the Body of Christ is called to walk.

              Torah is NOT the end-all and be-all of what God planned for mankind. To assert such means that you toss the New Testament and its additional revelation and instructions written to the Redeemed Body of Christ.

              -JGIG

  9. Sorry it took a while to respond. Holidays. I hope you’re having a good one. :D

    Hi Israel – the following has been edited slightly in that I’ve labled what you wrote and what I wrote so it’s easier to read. My responses will be in bold type below.

    JGIG –> Regarding #1 – The New Covenant does not ‘nullify’ the Old, it makes it obsolete: Hebrews 8:13 “13 By calling this covenant ‘new’, he has made the first one obsolete; and what is obsolete and outdated will soon disappear.”

    Israel –> What is the new covenant? According to scripture, when does it begin? According to Scripture, Who’s included in it?

    JGIG –> The New Covenant established in the Blood of Jesus began with the shedding of His Blood. John 3:16 tells who’s included in that New Covenant (whosoever believeth).

    JGIG –> The Law absolutely still has purpose – it shows mankind their sin and points to Jesus Christ.

    Israel –> According to 2 Tim 3:15-17, the Torah is:
    1. able to make you wise for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus (as you mentioned above).
    but then also is useful for…
    2. teaching
    3. rebuking
    4. correcting
    5. training in righteousness
    and if we think this only applies to the unbeliever, it is clearly written:
    “…so that the servant of G-d may…
    the result being:
    a. “thoroughly equipped”
    b. “for every”
    c. “good”
    d. “work.”
    So then the Torah has multiple functions. It serves to bring the unbeliever to Christ, and serves to instruct the believer in right living. This has always been the case.

    JGIG –> Torah being useful for instruction and teaching is quite different from Redeemed believers being bound to Mosaic Covenant Law contained within Torah.

    JGIG –> You used Galatians 3:17 to prove your point that the New Covenant does not ‘nullify the Old’, however the context from which you pulled that verse has to do with the covenant given at Sinai not setting aside the covenant before it – the Abrahamic Covenant.

    Israel –> My point was to show you Paul’s point that a new covenant can never set aside a previous covenant. That is a universal law. This means any “new covenant” can’t nullify an “older covenant.”

    JGIG –> The nation of Israel broke the covenant long before the Blood of Jesus rendered it obsolete. God was faithful to uphold His end of the bargain for His purposes and in spite of Israel’s repeated rebellion and idolatry.

    JGIG –> Then Paul goes on to say, “19 Why, then, was the law given at all? It was added because of transgressions until the Seed to whom the promise referred had come.” Galatians 3:19a

    Israel –>The Torah has always existed,

    JGIG –> No, Torah has not always existed. It is not an eternal entity. That is a belief that comes from Kabbalah, and cannot be backed up with Scripture.

    Israel cont. –> because G-d’s righteous standards have always existed, because G-d never changes.

    JGIG –>You’re equating Torah with God. Torah does not equal God.

    So then what is meant by the “giving” of something that already exists? Notice it doesn’t say “Why was the law CREATED at all?” The question instead is why was it GIVEN.

    JGIG –> If I make a gift for someone, I ‘give’ it to them. Does it already exist? Yes. Is it eternal, just because it is given, and I didn’t specify that I made it in order to give it? No. Rolling my eyes, now, Israel.

    Israel cont. –> Why was that which already existed as a perfect standard for righteousness put into the hands of man?

    JGIG –> You’re building on an unproven premise. Common in Law ‘keeping’ doctrine-fashioning.

    Israel cont. –> Because when man fell, he had a propensity to sin and like a good Father, our Father laid out the boundaries that defined Himself so as to have cause to correct us and bring us back to His standard (Messiah living through us which can only come about by us first accepting Messiah’s righteousness for ourselves). But since sin demands death, something has to die for there to be a true reconcilliation of the debt. Messiah died for us, and our old natures die in order that Messiah can live in us.

    JGIG –> Um, Israel, Messiah was not just another ‘something’ that had to die for us. He was the Perfect Lamb of God, the FINAL sacrifice. In Christ we die to sin and live in Christ. The old nature still wars within us, however, until The Resurrection (Romans 7).

    JGIG –> Until came and went. And the Seed showed up and did His thing =o). And back to Luke 22:20, “This cup is the new covenant in my blood, which is poured out for you.”

    Israel –> What is the new covenant? What are its terms. Where is it spelled out for us in scripture so as to have validity? What makes it valid? What is to prevent another “new covenant” from coming again and nullifying the then “older” “new” covenant?

    JGIG –> The New Covenant’s terms are laid out in John 3:16. The Blood of Christ makes it valid. You think that what Jesus did is not enough, and that we need another covenant? I think what He did is abundantly sufficient, and am not looking for another covenant.

    JGIG –> And the Seed was promised after the Fall, to all mankind.

    Israel –> So when was mankind instructed to hope for Messiah for salvation? Gen 3:15! Thus when does the new covenant officially begin? In Genesis 3:15!

    JGIG –> No. It was established at the shedding of the Blood of Messiah.

    Israel cont. –> And when will it be fully realized? At the End of the Age when we are all resurrected to eternal life.

    JGIG –> No. The New Covenant was fully realized when Jesus said it was: With His Blood.

    Israel cont. –> So then, if the New Covenant began in Gen 3:15, then why was the Torah given to even such a man as Moses, who himself is one counted as having “faith” if faith alone like Abraham saves you (which I agree with)? To teach Moses and all those of faith, how to live rightly since we all still sin! The Torah was given because of transgression. And last I checked, becoming a Christian doesn’t shield you from engaging in sin.

    JGIG –> You’re building on a false premise again. Nice try, though.

    JGIG –> And that little page between the Old and New Testaments? Don’t sweat it, it’s really not a stumbling block. In fact, I think it completely appropriate that the fulfillment of God’s ultimate plan for Redemption be set apart by at least one little page . . . A bit of an announcement, if you will.

    Israel –> I challenge you to define the New Covenant according to scripture, and therefore place that page in the appropriate place.

    JGIG –> Red Herring.

    JGIG –> Regarding #2 – You say, “The entirety of the Gospel is found in the Torah. Nothing lacking.”

    Yet God saw fit to work beyond Torah and come in the flesh to do the work of the Cross. If there was nothing lacking, as you assert, why would He bother?

    Israel –> I don’t see how the work of the cross is a work beyond Torah.

    JGIG –> Stunning.

    Israel –> If it were, then the work is unecessary and even counter to the truth of Torah if that were so. However that is not so. The work of the cross is taught from Torah as what Messiah would do. When Messiah came, he fulfilled, he did the work of the Torah that was prophesied about him in this regard. He would not be Messiah otherwise.

    JGIG –> You say, “You would not know the gospel if it weren’t for the Torah.” Really? Tell that to the millions of believers all over the world that have come to relationship with God through Jesus Christ and the story of His Birth, Death, and Resurrection.

    Dogma, meet Reality.

    Israel –> If there was no Torah, there would have been no Prophets and Writings. If there were no Torah, Prophets, and Writings, you would not be able to verify who Messiah is (for then anyone could claim to be Messiah and you’d have nothing to define or disprove it). So yes, I do tell it to the millions of Mormons all over the world who have come to a false relationship with G-d through a false Jesus Christ and the story of his birth, death, and resurrection.

    JGIG –> Mormons are in error because of Who they say Christ IS, not because of what they know or don’t know about Torah, or because of what they teach about the life, death and resurrection of Christ.

    JGIG –> As for recognizing false teachers/testing the spirits, you again use an example from Scripture that does not support your assertion. 1 John 4 is all about Jesus Christ and Who He is, and who others say He is. John doesn’t even bring Deuteronomy into the picture!

    Israel –> John does’t have to bring Deuteronomy into the picture because it’s already assumed. He doesn’t have to restate scripture that came before him, in order to make a point that is obvious.

    JGIG –> Yet he writes of Christ and not Torah.

    JGIG –> Love God and love your neighbor, yes, however in the context of Christ and the simplified Law that He established in the New Covenant.

    Israel –> Where is there any talk of a “simplified law” that he established, discussed anywhere in scripture, let alone prophesied would come? What authority does one claiming such have to rely on to prove such? What scriptural backing? If someone can make up scripture, then what’s to prevent the Mormons from doing the same?

    JGIG –> Matthew 22:34-40

    Sounds like you have some history with Mormons . . . they add to the Scriptures. No kidding. That has nothing to do with me.

    JGIG –> The Old Covenantal system is not a part of what John teaches us to look for or measure by. “Who do you say Jesus is” is the question we must ask those who seek to teach us. If anyone preaches a different Jesus that that of the Scriptures, then they are a false prophet/teacher.

    Israel –> I wholeheartedly agree.

    JGIG –> Yet you measure everything by Torah and rabbinics and not by the Living Christ.

    JGIG –> Regarding #4 – You’re using the word ‘kept’ in that the second set of tablets was put away, retained, in a storage kind of way. What I meant when I said that the second tablets were not kept any better than the first was in the ‘keeping of, an observing of the Law’ sense.

    Israel –> I mean both. The tablets were kept (observed) more so than before, and also retained (and not broken in the physical sense). The point scriptures make is clear. One set was broken, the other is not. If they had kept sinning as much as they did prior, the new set would have been broken as well. It’s not just narrative. It’s to teach you something about the Covenant – that the first time it’s given, it’s broken, then it is given again, and this time it is kept (in every sense of the word). We see this in the case concerning Adam and Eve. G-d gave them the Torah, that as long as they kept it, they had eternal life. They broke it, and died. Yet G-d renews it to them, indicating that “your desire will be for your husband, and and he will rule over you,” to the one who is called “mother of all the living” indicating that one who desires our husband, Messiah, he will (in the World to Come) rule over you (as our King), and this is promised to all those who are alive (have eternal life because of this “desire” for Messiah). Thus showing us that the King keeps the Torah (and he lives forever) and we who desire him will have him rule over us (a promise of resurrection unto eternal life, for how can a King rule over dead people?).

    JGIG –> No. Israel demonstrably broke the covenant with God repeatedly. Nice try though.

    JGIG –> Regarding #5 – You disregard the work of the Cross and what Jesus Christ accomplished there. Christ is the end of the Law for all who believe on Him. In Christ, the Law becomes an obsolete religious system. If you are in Christ, you are no longer under the Law.

    Israel –> Christ is the “goal” of the Torah for all who believe on him. Just as viewing a planet through a telescope doesn’t cause the planet to cease to exist or make the telescope of no use, so too viewing Jesus through Torah doesn’t make Jesus cease to exist, or make the Torah of no use in seeing him. The same greek root “teleos” is used there. It means “goal” not (final) end (as in making void).

    JGIG –> So you stay on the viewing end of the telescope – instead of going to that which the telescope has pointed you.

    JGIG –> Regarding #6 – You’re trying to make Yeshua the Living Torah again, Israel. Not buyin’ it. Sorry. Torah points to Christ. Christ did the work of the Cross. The religious system that was Torah is now obsolete because of that work at the Cross.

    Israel –> If the Torah defines Messiah (and I think your disagreement with this is the crux of your faulty hermeneutic) then if the Torah is obsolete, then Christ too would be absolete.

    JGIG –> Torah points to Christ. Who He IS is defined here: “9 For in Christ all the fullness of the Deity lives in bodily form, 10 and in Christ you have been brought to fullness. He is the head over every power and authority. 11 In him you were also circumcised with a circumcision not performed by human hands. Your whole self ruled by the flesh was put off when you were circumcised by Christ, 12 having been buried with him in baptism, in which you were also raised with him through your faith in the working of God, who raised him from the dead.

    13 When you were dead in your sins and in the uncircumcision of your flesh, God made you alive with Christ. He forgave us all our sins, 14 having canceled the charge of our legal indebtedness, which stood against us and condemned us; he has taken it away, nailing it to the cross. 15 And having disarmed the powers and authorities, he made a public spectacle of them, triumphing over them by the cross.” (Colossians 2:9-15)

    The Reality of Who Jesus Christ is goes FAR beyond the shadows that Torah and the prophets could see! Think blueprint vs. skyscraper, artist’s sketch vs. masterpiece. The pictures, types, and shadows are but a glimpse of the substance!

    Israel cont. –> For if the definition of an apple is obsolete then the apple (as a concept) is obsolete.

    JGIG –> That makes no sense. So if the blueprints are no longer needed (obsolete) because the skyscraper is complete, the skyscraper ceases to exist? If the artist does away with the sketch because they hold the masterpiece in their hands, the masterpiece is obsolete? You need a new metaphor, Israel. That one does not work on a number of levels. Regarding Torah, the whole of Torah is not obsolete, but the system of Law within the Torah is obsolete in light of the New Covenant in Christ’s Blood.

    Israel cont. –>Yet even if the Torah could be made obsolete, there is no prophecy anywhere in scripture that would ever give such a claim legitimacy. And if you believe the claim of obsoleteness of a scripture can come outside of that very scripture itself, then you practically hand the scepter of validity to any and all false religions that do the same including Mormonism and Islam who validate their claims outside of the scripture they attempt to make obsolete. In other words, if you claim the Torah can be made obsolete, then you have to be able to form your legal basis for such a claim from the very words of Torah itself, otherwise you introduce a claim that is outside of that closed system (and thus invalidate the Torah’s claim that it is a closed system of revelation – a catch22 that invalidates both claims the moment your outside claim can even be considered valid). It’s pure and simple logic. You can’t have a prophet arising one day and say that Genesis-Revelation is now obsolete and that there is a New new testament that is the truth, or else you invalidate the solid testimony of the scriptures that came before that clearly teaches one is not to add or subtract from its commands (and teaching derived therefrom). If the prophet of the New new testament is telling the truth, then what is prevent another prophet from arising with a New new new testament invalidating the one that came before? Your eternal life based on a “new” testamenet, or the “new” “new” testament, wouldn’t be all that eternal in the face of a “new” “new” “new” testament, now would it? Yet this is the logical conclusion of your hermeneutic when you suggest even for a second that the Torah can ever become “obsolete.”

    I suppose I’d have to ask the leading questions now: in your mind what is the Torah obsolete about? Salvation? Defining sin? When did Torah ever save a dead person? If Torah never saved mankind after the Fall, then what is made obsolete? If you say its definition of sin is made obsolete, then are there two standards of sin: one for the believer who is under the law, and one who is of Christ? If so, can what a Christian do not be sin, but is a sin for an unbeliever? Can you think of an example? Which command is expected of unbelievers, that isn’t expected of believers?

    JGIG –> That was an impressive display of totally mischaracterizing what it means for the Old Covenant to be obsolete. The Old Covenant is contained IN Torah.

    JGIG –> Regarding #8 – But Torah does not teach how to go out an make disciples of all tribes tongues and nations.

    Israel –> Yes it does. Where shall I begin?
    Noah preached righteousness but after 120 years of preaching, he only had 7 disciples.
    Abram won souls (hebrew: nefesh) in Haran. He was the first great evangelist of the one true G-d. – Gen 12:4
    “The scepter will not depart from Judah, nor the ruler’s staff from between his feet, until he to whom it belongs shall come and the obedience of the nations shall be his.”- Gen 49:10

    This teaches us that all those who are obedient to Messiah, are called amim – peoples, not goyim – gentiles, aka they are identifeid “with him” ie, in the tribe of Judah, ie converts, ie (called) Jews.

    JGIG –> Galatians 3:26-29 says, “26 So in Christ Jesus you are all children of God through faith, 27 for all of you who were baptized into Christ have clothed yourselves with Christ. 28 There is neither Jew nor Gentile, neither slave nor free, nor is there male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus. 29 If you belong to Christ, then you are Abraham’s seed, and heirs according to the promise.”

    Israel cont. –> When Israel left Egypt there was a “great many other people” who “went up with them” – Ex 12:38.

    In Jewish tradition, when Israel received the Torah in the wilderness at Sinai, the words were given in all 70 languages of the world (the 70 nations of Noah) to peals of thunder and tongues of fire (a direct correlation that happened on that exact same day thousands of years later on what Christians call Pentecost).

    “When you march up to attack a city, make its people an offer of peace.” – Deut 20:10

    It teaches clearly that Israel was to go out into the world and make terms of peace. True peace. Not a fake political peace.

    JGIG –> Riiiight . . . that’s why God said, “When you march up to attack a city . . . ” No, sir, God was giving those who were to be conquered by the nation of Israel a chance at mercy: surrender or die.

    Israel cont. –> What peace? The true peace of reconcilliation between G-d and man, of which Messiah is called the Prince of Peace. Israel was to offer the nations the Messiah, and if they don’t accept, they were to conqour them.

    JGIG –> Okay, this is getting weirder and weirder. Israel was offering Messiah to the nations? Messiah had not yet come. Details, details.

    Israel cont. –> Will this not be so at the End of Days? Will not all nations be subjected to the King of Kings? How much more so G-d desires to offer the nations terms of peace through Messiah rather than destroying them.

    JGIG –> I’m content to leave the End of Days to He Who holds all in His Hands.

    Israel cont. –> Many many times in Torah is Israel so instructed to bring Messiah to the nations. Many orthodox Jews know this. It is after all the Jewish understanding of evangelism, for as the prophet also writes:

    “Many peoples will come and say, “Come, let us go up to the mountain of the LORD, to the temple of the God of Jacob. He will teach us his ways, so that we may walk in his paths.” The Torah will go out from Zion, the word of the LORD from Jerusalem.” – Is 2:3

    If the Torah is obsolete, then this prophecy will never come to pass.

    JGIG –> Israel is not to bring Messiah to the nations (and she demonstrably does not) – The Body of Christ is. Oh, and those Orthodox Jews . . . they reject Jesus Christ.

    JGIG –> Torah taught to stay set apart from the world. We are to go out in to the world and preach the Gospel – to go out into the world yet be not of it. That is an impossible task within the confines of Torah Law.

    Israel –> If this were so, then how could Jesus in Mark 1:15 “preach the gospel?” Isn’t he perfect to Torah? Yet he managed to reach even tax collectors and prostitutes and make them his disciples! Did Jesus sin? No. So if Jesus, who was perfect to to Torah and thus very “separated” from sin, how much more so we can and SHOULD do the same when bringing the gospel to the rest of the world! The gospel does not need to be compromised by our walk in order for people to accept the gospel message. If anything, this is the fallacy of some modern church movements, and often causes people follow a shallow gospel that when tested, doesn’t have much root at all.

    JGIG –> Are you saying that Torah did not teach to stay set apart from the world?

    JGIG –>Regarding #9 – Um, Israel, I was speaking of eternal life. Torah does not claim to offer that. The verses you quoted speak of self-preservation in the flesh.

    Israel –> No where is the word “flesh” mentioned.

    JGIG –> So the flesh was not stoned in cases of disobedience where stoning was required? What was stoned??

    JGIG –> Obey and be blessed. Disobey and be cursed, or worse yet, be put to death. You wrote, “And if we are careful to obey all this law before the LORD our God, as he has commanded us, that will be our righteousness.” Um, no, Israel.

    Israel –> You’re not disagreeing with me on this. You’re disagreeing with scripture. As it is written:

    “And if we are careful to obey all this law before the LORD our God, as he has commanded us, that will be our righteousness.” – Deut 6:25

    Did G-d lie? Did G-d change his mind since then? No. G-d’s Word is eternal.

    JGIG –> God did not lie in the least. No one has ever kept the Law. One instance of breaking it disqualifies one from righteousness (so don’t even bother with the Zach and Liz defense – they kept the Law in the confines of the Law, but they were not sinless). Jesus was sinless and therefore is perfectly righteous. It is His righteousness that we put on when we put on Christ: 1 Corinthians 1:30 says, “30 It is because of him that you are in Christ Jesus, who has become for us wisdom from God—that is, our righteousness, holiness and redemption. 31 Therefore, as it is written: “Let the one who boasts boast in the Lord.”

    JGIG –>Jesus Christ is our righteousness: 1 Corinthians 1:30-31 says, “30 It is because of him that you are in Christ Jesus, who has become for us wisdom from God—that is, our righteousness, holiness and redemption. 31 Therefore, as it is written: ‘Let the one who boasts boast in the Lord.’” You are boasting in the Law.

    JGIG –> Like I said . . .

    Israel –> I am not boasting in the law. There is a righteousness that comes by the law… and a righteousness that comes by faith. Two different kinds of righteousness. The Torah preaches both. Messiah has the first kind (because he is perfect to Torah). We who believe in him have the second kind (because we have faith in his work). If you ever remove the first kind, you make Christ’s righteousness nothing, and our inheritance of eternal life based on his righteousness totally null and void without legal standing. Therefore, Chris is perfect to Torah…forever.

    JGIG –> Everything you think and do and write about it Torah-centric, Israel. There is no denying that.

    JGIG –>Regarding #10 – About PaRDeS: If it’s so great, why aren’t those who practice it (the Rabbis and Sages from different streams of Judaism) flocking to Jesus Christ and acknowledging Him as their Saviour in droves?

    Israel –> I have firsthand contacts with those that do, and from them I also hear that many already do. But because the Messiah that most Christians preach by their lifestyle and walk is a Messiah that does away with the Torah, causes a Jew to forsake sabbath and kosher, among other things, and in their minds is rightly labeled a false prophet according to Deut 13, so they stay in the synagogue, and often due to the “popularity” of “Jesus Christ” in Judaism (by the actions of his claimed followers) many are fearful of letting on to others that they believe so for fear of being kicked out of the synagogue (which Jesus said would happen anyways). Many don’t want to go to Church for fear of letting others know that they yes, still keep Torah because they are commanded to do so!

    JGIG –> I have no problem with those who desire to observe Feasts and Days and dietary laws and other edicts found in Mosaic Covenant Law. Romans 14 deals with those issues specifically (I know your Torah-centricity sees it differently and I’ve written about that HERE on JGIG). It is out of bounds, however, when those who choose to observe edicts and regulations teach that it is mandated for all believers.

    Israel cont. –> Imagine if such believers who “keep God’s commands and hold fast their testimony about Jesus” (Rev 12:19) actually became vocal in the Church today? Could you imagine how “well” they would be received? Though the time is coming when the silence will be too deafening to bear, but the message that such believers will have for the Church won’t be well-received now, and the time is not yet right, so they remain still silent. I remain silent as well, when I visit Christian groups, although often my clothing speaks for me and causes others to ask questions about what I beleive.

    JGIG –> Um, that’s called Judaizing, and Paul spoke quite forcefully against it.

    JGIG –> PaRDeS results in confusing, not clarifying, the Gospel and the teachings of the writings to the Body of Christ.

    Israel –> I whole heartedly disagree. When used properly, PaRDeS is the means whereby the gospel is understood and Christ seen all the more clearly.

    JGIG –> You are entitled to your opinion, but PaRDeS rabbinic in origin and has components of mysticism. Not buyin’ it.

    JGIG –> PaRDeS, by its nature of trying to find ‘hidden meaning’ and ‘unique insight’ in every stroke and structure of text ends up seeing things that are not there, and/or constructing what the reader wishes were there.

    Israel –> Not if one follows the rules of hermeneutics embedded in using PaRDeS.

    JGIG –> I’ll repeat here: You are entitled to your opinion, but PaRDeS rabbinic in origin and has components of mysticism. Not buyin’ it.

    JGIG –>You have made Torah your god. The balance of your views reflect that position.

    Israel –> When it is by Torah we know the truth of G-d, how much more so then is anything outside of it not G-d. Or else you wind up with idolatry, and no limit to the imagination.

    JGIG –> When it comes right down to it, you preach a different gospel, and a different Jesus than is reflected in the writings given to the Body of Christ.

    Israel –> I disagree.

    I think instead, we disagree on the centrality of the Torah as regards to hermeneutics. You believe it can be nullified and subtracted from, contrary to what it says that one is not to add or subtract from all that it commands. Your hermeneutic essentially hands the keys of legitimacy to every false religion that attempts to do the same, even though you don’t intend to.

    Your hermeneutic makes out G-d to promote some kind of non-Torah based double standard for sinners vs some ethereal arbitrary and undefined standard for saints, and a G-d who changes his eternal Word without any prior justification for doing so – thus unwittingly placing the eternality of anyone’s salvation into serious question since at anytime in the future G-d could change his mind again contrary to his Word.

    I don’t believe that you believe in a fickle G-d, but in all honesty that is the kind of G-d your hermeneautic would lead anyone to conclude once they consider the totality of scripture beginning with In the Beginning. Especially Jews who know better than to accept anything that contradicts the Torah.

    I encourage you to reconsider.

    JGIG –> Your’s is the “My God never changes” argument. Someone else posted something HERE today that I think says it well: “Honestly, I am so SICK of the “he hasn’t changed” argument. It’s so… ignorant. Look, if a master builder builds the foundation one day, and then the frame the next, and then does the plumbing next… has the BUILDER changed, or has the BUILDING? The building, of course. The changing — rather the GROWING — of the building is the builder’s plan. Steps need to happen IN ORDER so that the building is complete. The builder has not “changed” nor has he “changed his mind” if the building looks different to an outsider on any given day.

    God has not changed, but he does have a master plan. The Law didn’t exist for thousands of years, and then he gave it to Israel. Did he “change” when he dropped 613 commandments on Israel? No? Why not? Weren’t the laws “new”?

    The Law is all a part of his plan. It’s one part of the house.”

    No need for me to reconsider. I’m a living stone in the Building my Creator laid plans for long ago . . .

    “4 As you come to him, the living Stone—rejected by humans but chosen by God and precious to him— 5 you also, like living stones, are being built into a spiritual house to be a holy priesthood, offering spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ. 6 For in Scripture it says:
    “See, I lay a stone in Zion,
    a chosen and precious cornerstone,
    and the one who trusts in him
    will never be put to shame.”

    7 Now to you who believe, this stone is precious. But to those who do not believe,

    “The stone the builders rejected
    has become the cornerstone,”

    8 and,

    “A stone that causes people to stumble
    and a rock that makes them fall.”

    They stumble because they disobey the message—which is also what they were destined for.

    9 But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, God’s special possession, that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light. 10 Once you were not a people, but now you are the people of God; once you had not received mercy, but now you have received mercy.” (1 Peter 2:4-10)

    Israel, we could go on and on here, but it would not be profitable for either of us.

    Blessings as you go,
    -JGIG

    (from JGIG – Not sure why the bolding tags are not working all the way to the end of the post – have tried to fix them 3 times grrr. Oh well.)

    • - My response to Israel is in the bolded type above for ease of reading -

      • Did you get my response? Feel free to pick up the conversation over email if it’s not something you want to publish on your blog.

        Shalom,

        Israel

        • Hi Israel,

          Yes, I did get your response. I wrote this at the end of my last post, “Israel, we could go on and on here, but it would not be profitable for either of us.”

          I think we are at the point where we have to ask ourselves, “What is it that we hope to accomplish?” My goal is not to convert you, as you are obviously firm in your convictions. If you are out to convert me, rest assured that I am also equally firm in my convictions =o).

          My goal is, however, to provide the reader, specifically those who’s paths are crossed with the teachings of Law ‘keeping’ sects, examples of beliefs in those sects, and demonstrate the errors found there. I think that goal has been accomplished with our discourse, and that there is no profit in continuing. Your latest comment (which I did not post here) strays further away from the post content originally commented upon, and as I said, will profit neither one of us if we continue, and in my opinion, will not profit the reader here at JGIG.

          I’ve enjoyed our discourse! You of course, may comment on other posts here at JGIG =o)!

          Blessings as you go,
          -JGIG

  10. You said “If Jesus is God in the flesh, and Jesus = the written Word, then you are limiting the scope of Who God is to the written Word.”

    and “It is in the deification of Torah itself where we differ.”

    You are confused. I am not “deifying Torah”, nor am I limiting Jesus to JUST the written Word. I thought I made that clear. I am simply taking the concept of “the Word made flesh” to its logical conclusion. If Jesus is the “logos/spoken Word made flesh”, then He is ALSO the WRITTEN Word made flesh. God doesn’t have two Words, one written, one spoken. It was ALL spoken FIRST, then written down later.

    Torah is PART of the Word, therefore it is also PART of Jesus. Therefore “Jesus is the living Torah” is an accurate statement, though it is not all encompassing. Jesus is ALSO the living Prophets, Psalms, Proverbs, etc. He is ALL of these things and more. Therefore to reject any one of these things is to reject part of the Messiah.

    My only point in all of this is that you cannot perform theological surgery and remove Torah from the Word just because you don’t like the phrase “Jesus is the living Torah”. Like it or not, it is accurate.

    • Captain Obvious,

      If you say that ‘Jesus is the Living Torah’ is an accurate statement, just not all-encompassing of who Jesus is, then why would you use that term at all? There is no acceptable reason to limit Him in His scope, unless one has another (Torah-centric) agenda afoot.

      -JGIG

      • But if you say “Jesus was the prophecies come to life” or something along those lines, nobody would accuse you of having an agenda. How is that any different?

        My only agenda is the Word of God. All of it.

        • Jesus wasn’t the prophecies ‘come to life’. He is the fulfillment – the substance – not some personification. I sense that you and I could go on and on semantically about ‘Yeshua is the Living Torah’ for some time. Not sure I’m going to take the time for that.

          The ‘agenda’, as I see it, is one of elevating Torah and misusing the Law to convince believers that they are still bound to the edicts and regulations of Mosaic Covenant Law. In so doing, that agenda, intentionally or not, diminishes Who Jesus Christ is and what He accomplished with His Life, Death, Resurrection, and Ascension.

          Blessings,
          -JGIG

  11. Hi, thank you for your hard work for the truth. I was wondering if you could take a look at a site and see if there is anything you can do to help folks there respond to the Hebrew Roots people. Thank you.
    [Link removed]

    • Hi Morgan,

      Thanks for your kind words =o). I’ve emailed you privately regarding the Forum you mentioned.

      Every blessing,
      -JGIG

  12. Obviously, I am out of my league here, but I have read this long discussion until my head hurts.At one point Israel made a comment we can probably all agree with, that God does not change. I may have missed it, but I don’t recall any mention of Oral Torah. Jews, especially but not limited to Orthodox Jews, believe that every Jew who ever lived or will live was present at Sinai when God gave both Oral and Written Torah to Moses. And the written Torah cannot be obeyed without guidance from the Oral Torah.

    Later Joshua tells us that all of written Torah was read to the people. Oral Torah was not written down for many centuries, but it was and is considered equally valid as the written Torah. That is, both are the Word of God.

    1. Doesn’t that present a problem for those who say, “Jesus=Torah?”
    2. My second question is about this comment: Israel –> My point was to show you Paul’s point that a new covenant can never set aside a previous covenant. That is a universal law. This means any “new covenant” can’t nullify an “older covenant.”

    Jeremiah did not believe in that “universal law.”

    Jer 31:31 Behold, the days come, saith the LORD, that I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel, and with the house of Judah;
    Jer 31:32 not according to the covenant that I made with their fathers in the day that I took them by the hand to bring them out of the land of Egypt; forasmuch as they broke My covenant, although I was a lord over them, saith the LORD.

    Jer 31:33 But this is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, saith the LORD, I will put My law in their inward parts, and in their heart will I write it; and I will be their God, and they shall be My people;

    Jer 31:34 and they shall teach no more every man his neighbour, and every man his brother, saying: ‘Know the LORD'; for they shall all know Me, from the least of them unto the greatest of them, saith the LORD; for I will forgive their iniquity, and their sin will I remember no more. (JPS)

    I really don’t see such a “universal law” anywhere in Scripture, so where did you get that idea?

    . Of course God’s covenant with Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob cannot be set aside because that is an everlasting covenant between God and God, so to speak. But the Sinai covenant between God and the Chosen People has an “if” clause in it. And, as JGIG mentioned, the people broke that contract.

    Love in Christ,
    Herb

    • Hi Herb,

      Yeah, that’s a long discourse . . . my head hurt too =o)!

      Regarding Oral Law – Israel’s (the commenter, not the nation) website is steeped in Talmudic and Kabbalistic thought. If you take a look through his recommended reading list, you’ll find examples of writings that have nothing to do with faith in Jesus Christ, the Messiah.

      His site is a good example of what happens when you try to mix a religion that has chosen to deny Jesus Christ as Messiah (Judaism) and Biblical Christianity, which embraces Jesus Christ and His completed work. You end up with a confusing mess, actually. To those being exposed to it initially, it is a fascinating study (echoes of “who has bewitched you” here . . . ), but when you look at the big picture, there are several fatal flaws.

      -JGIG

    • Herb –> I may have missed it, but I don’t recall any mention of Oral Torah.

      Israel –> Correct. My love and desire is to only understand the truth from the written Torah. The oral Torah, in my experience, is always found in the written, as even the Sages agree that the oral came before the written.

      Herb –> Jews, especially but not limited to Orthodox Jews, believe that every Jew who ever lived or will live was present at Sinai when God gave both Oral and Written Torah to Moses. And the written Torah cannot be obeyed without guidance from the Oral Torah.

      Israel –> Correct. But the Big Misconception is that the oral Torah came after the written. When viewed as two separate bodies of information, that is when one has entered into heresy. But an oral tradition has always accompanied the written text. After all, how can one know what an aleph is (the first letter of the Hebrew alephbet) without someone telling you? Thus you rely on a teacher to frame your understanding of the written. So too when you go to a new job. Imagine all the oral unwritten rules of the job that someone has to teach you in order to do it. So too the oral Torah is what opens up our understanding of the written, however this oral Torah I’m referring to is not the Talmud, nor Kabbalah, nor Chassidut, nor anything JGIG has pointed out is on our reading list. It’s simply tradition handed from teacher to student, in how to understand certain portions of the text, and of course, at any point the oral contradicts the written, then it’s not the fault of the written, but of the one claiming they are teaching an oral tradition from Moses.

      Herb — >Later Joshua tells us that all of written Torah was read to the people. Oral Torah was not written down for many centuries, but it was and is considered equally valid as the written Torah. That is, both are the Word of God.

      Israel –> On the contrary, the oral came before the written, and yes, it was all written down… in the Torah.

      Herb –> 2. My second question is about this comment: Israel –> My point was to show you Paul’s point that a new covenant can never set aside a previous covenant. That is a universal law. This means any “new covenant” can’t nullify an “older covenant.” Jeremiah did not believe in that “universal law.” I really don’t see such a “universal law” anywhere in Scripture, so where did you get that idea?

      Israel –> I think the idea is for you to prove to me that there is any indication that a newer covenant nullifies a previous one. Jeremiah never said so. It says simply “I will make a covenant not like the covenant I made with your fathers…” but it says nothing of nullification of the previous. In fact, G-d says “even though I was faithful.” If anything, it appears G-d is making an new (renewed) addition to the previous covenant. The only difference between the covenants mentioned in the text is that the first one is broken by one party and kept by the other party… the new one is kept by both parties. That is the ONLY difference in the text between the two covenants presented.

      Herb –> the Sinai covenant between God and the Chosen People has an “if” clause in it. And, as JGIG mentioned, the people broke that contract.

      Israel –> That “if” clause remains in effect forever and has no termination point, as Torah says:

      “When all these blessings and curses I have set before you come on you and you take them to heart wherever the LORD your God disperses you among the nations, and when you and your children return to the LORD your God and obey him with all your heart and with all your soul according to everything I command you today, then the LORD your God will restore your fortunes and have compassion on you and gather you again from all the nations where he scattered you.” (Deut 30:1-3)

      Sounds to me like this promise endures forever, as it was again fulfilled in 1948 with the end of the Roman exile and the establishment of the State of Israel.

      JGIG –> Regarding Oral Law – Israel’s (the commenter, not the nation) website is steeped in Talmudic and Kabbalistic thought. If you take a look through his recommended reading list, you’ll find examples of writings that have nothing to do with faith in Jesus Christ, the Messiah.

      Israel –> Some, not all. Obviously it’s good for readers to read some things with a grain of salt, and like most reading lists, not everything in every book is recommended reading nor things we agree with. If you want to see what we agree with, join our mailing list and get involved in the discussions.

      JGIG –> His site is a good example of what happens when you try to mix a religion that has chosen to deny Jesus Christ as Messiah (Judaism) and Biblical Christianity, which embraces Jesus Christ and His completed work. You end up with a confusing mess, actually.

      Israel –> Actually the mess tends to clear up when you have a heart of repentence and a desire for seeking the truth of matters when studying with others who too are studying the Word of G-d together.

      JGIG –> To those being exposed to it initially, it is a fascinating study (echoes of “who has bewitched you” here . . . ), but when you look at the big picture, there are several fatal flaws.

      Israel –> JGIG, I would really like to know what fatal flaws we hold to. Evening naming one would be sufficient to make your point valid. As stated above, we love the truth, and the pusuit of truth is nothing we are ashamed of, so by all means, share away. Let me know where we’re wrong, and we’ll be glad to discuss it! If you don’t want to discuss it on your blog for fear of your readers being led astray (G-d forbid) then by all means, email me. But certainly please don’t paint us as anti-Christs and when we are nothing of the sort.

      Shalom,

      Israel

      • Hi Israel,

        About your response to Herb about, “Jews, especially but not limited to Orthodox Jews, believe that every Jew who ever lived or will live was present at Sinai when God gave both Oral and Written Torah to Moses.” You responded, “Correct.” Um . . . got Scripture for that one, Israel? You’re sounding more than a little New Agey with that one.

        A question regarding your description of Oral Torah: Have you ever played ‘Telephone’? =o)

        Regarding Oral Torah being written down, beyond the ‘telephone’ and Jewish Mysticism issues, Talmud and related texts deny Jesus Christ/Yeshua as Messiah. Why would those who have placed their trust in Jesus Christ rely on such writings for any instruction in our faith?

        Thanks for the invite to the mailing list, but no thanks.

        Israel –> Actually the mess tends to clear up when you have a heart of repentance and a desire for seeking the truth of matters when studying with others who too are studying the Word of G-d together.

        JGIG –> Israel, if you were studying just the Word of God, you would not be where you are. Again, no thanks.

        As for the fatal flaws issue, I actually just posted about that HERE. I’ll let the reader decide whether they think you are ultimately for or against Christ, and God to make the ultimate judgement.

        -JGIG

  13. JGIG,

    Here are two undeniable words that drive you law-breakers crazy, and for which you cannot move beyond unless you play fast and loose with the entire Bible:

    1) Perpetual

    One example:

    Exodus 31:16 Wherefore the children of Israel shall keep the sabbath, to observe the sabbath throughout their generations, for a perpetual covenant.

    I know, I know, you’re likely going to say “We’re not the children of Israel,” and that you’re “a new covenant believer”. I used to think the same way. But with whom is the new covenant made?

    Jeremiah 31:31, Hebrew 8:8 Behold, the days come, says the Lord, when I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel and with the house of Judah

    2) Forever

    Two examples:

    Deuteronomy 29:29 The secret things belong to the LORD our God: But those things which are revealed belong to us and to our children forever, that we may do all the words of this law.

    Psalm 119:44 So shall I keep Your law continually forever and ever.

    I’m sorry to ask the obvious questions, but does something that is “perpetual” somehow cease to be so, and does “forever” come to an end?

    And if you try and put the spin on by redefining “perpetual” and “forever” to mean something other than what they plainly and clearly mean, then you’ll have to do the same with the verses you choose to hold dear, (as you toss out the ones you don’t like).

    An example:

    1 Chronicles 16:34 O give thanks to the LORD; for He is good; for His mercy endures forever.

    I’m sure you don’t want to say that His mercy does not endure forever.

    Ecclesiastes 12:13 Let us hear the conclusion of the whole matter: Fear God, and keep His commandments, for this is the whole duty of man.

    Shalom,
    Hamilton

    • Hi Hamilton,

      Welcome to JGIG.

      You raise some excellent points, and points that tend to confuse Christians and sway them toward Law ‘keeping’ if they don’t understand three things:

      1) Each time the words ‘law’, ‘commandments’, ‘precepts’, ‘statutes’ or another similar word appears in Scripture, they don’t all refer to Mosaic Covenant Law all the time. One need only to think of the many different commands and instructions that God has given before, during, and after the codified Law was given at Sinai to see that this is true. God often gave different instructions to different people for different purposes. The Mosaic Covenant Law was no different. It had it’s time and place, but is now obsolete in Christ. (See the letter to the Hebrews.)

      2) Israel did not hold up her end of the Mosaic Covenant with God. Through repeated rebellion and idolatry, the covenant that you seek to label as perpetual is in reality broken. God, however, has remained faithful to His promises for His purposes, praise and glory. Jeremiah 31 tells how God will bring, and the letter to the Hebrews tells how God did indeed bring, a New Covenant in which HE holds up both ends of the bargain and we can enter into by putting our faith and trust in Christ. The New Covenant fulfills Promises given to Adam and Eve at the Fall, to Abraham, and to Israel. The New Covenant, not like the old, and with better promises, covers all who put our faith and trust in Jesus Christ the Messiah, not just Israel/Judah.

      3) The Hebrew word for ‘perpetual’, and ‘forever’, ‘owlam’ (H5769), can mean forever, but does not always mean forever. Its meaning is conditional, depending on the nature of that which is being described. From Christian-thinktank.com :

      Olam thus seems to mean ‘indefinitely, with reference to the nature of the thing being so described.’ If the nature is God, then olam (or owlam) means ‘truly eternal’. If the nature is a human, then it means ‘as long as he lives’. If the nature is a relationship, then it means as long as the conditions upon which the relationship is based still hold. And this: And, since we know the Mosaic covenant was a conditional one, it could easily have been understood after the model of many others in the OT/Tanakh: “eternal, as long as the agreed upon conditions are met”. [Though I don’t agree with everything in the article cited, the two statements above give a good description of the conditional nature of the word “owlam”.

      You can read about ‘owlam’ and how it is defined Hebraically HERE, just scroll down to the last entry. A video version of that entry can be seen HERE

      In your last point, you’re trying to apply an eternal attribute to Mosaic Covenant Law (where that attribute clearly does not apply, as Israel broke the covenant) and then compare the eternal attribute of God’s mercy and hold them as equal. That’s a fallacious comparison.

      Thank you, Hamilton, for bringing these valid points to the fore =o).

      Blessings,
      -JGIG

  14. Edit by JGIG: The man (first known as Captain Obvious, then as JoyfullyGrowingInSin, then as Joyfully Growing In Torah) who has made it his mission to troll after me for over a year now has now started a blog. On his blog he copies and pastes Hebrew Roots Teachings and takes shots at Joyfully Growing In Grace.

    The following comment came here through a ‘ping back’, which is a notification to this blog if anyone links here. True to form, Growing In Torah takes what I’ve written out of context and distorts and twists for his own purposes. Just a heads up, folks!

    [...] original JGIG article can be found here: http://joyfullygrowingingrace.wordpress.com/2010/11/05/12-undeniable-truths-that-drive-law-keepers-c…) Share this:PrintTwitterFacebookDiggStumbleUponMoreEmailLike this:LikeBe the first to like this [...]

  15. JGIG: Love this post. :)
    I would add another “truth that drive law-keepers crazy” to the pot:
    Adam and Eve’s children married their siblings (as did Abraham) – something prohibited by Leviticus 20:17.

    I had a dialogue with one law-keeper more than a year ago (here) who absolutely insisted that the laws given at Sinai were eternal and had always been obeyed by the people of God, to which I responded by asking why Seth married his sister. The man at first tried to deny this happened (saying “he probably married a niece”), but I pointed out that, barring God creating another original couple separate from Adam and Eve, God forced men into a situation where it was impossible to continue the race without sinning (i.e. marrying a sister), OR it was not originally a sin to marry a sister. This conclusion is unavoidable regardless of whether Seth specifically married a niece or not (a kid can figure out that if you start with 2 people, you can’t get to 3+ generations without at least one brother and sister union).

    He sparked and sputtered and could give no coherent response

    • That is a great point!

      That alone blows the whole “God does not change so neither can His laws” argument! (To clarify to the Law ‘keeping’ reader: I do not believe that God changes; it is evident, however, that God’s specific instructions have changed throughout the ages in order to bring about His purposes.)

      Double thumbs up, Tom!

      Blessings,
      -JGIG

    • In regards to the command to “choose life” this command takes precedence over any prohibition in the Torah, except three: adultery, murder, and idol worship. This means that even in a situation such as Seth and his sister, the command to “multiply” overrides the prohibition to lay with one’s sister, because if Seth and Cain were to refuse doing so, they would violate the command to “choose life” and the human race would have become extinct.

      The entire Torah is legally consistent. It is a whole, complete revelation, unified and not at all contradictory, and certainly not “progressive”.

      After all, to what law was G-d referring to when he warned that sin was crouching at Cain’s door? When was the prohibition of murder written in the Torah? Before or after Cain?

      • You’re operating on the premise that Torah preceded Sinai. There is no Scripture to back up that notion.

        Romans 5:12-13 says this:
        12 Therefore, just as sin entered the world through one man, and death through sin, and in this way death came to all men, because all sinned— 13 for before the law was given, sin was in the world. But sin is not taken into account when there is no law.

        In Galatians 3, the Law is described as being given 430 years after Abraham!

        Your premise does not match up with the Scriptures =o).

        -JGIG

      • Israel: What JGIG said. Also, note that Abraham too married his sister at a later date, when this wasn’t the only option as it was in Seth’s case.

  16. To add something else…I was reading a book about Grace and some of this stuff was brought forth.

    Revelation 3:15-16(NASB) 15 ‘I know your deeds, that you are neither cold nor hot; I wish that you were cold or hot. 16 So because you are lukewarm, and neither hot nor cold, I will spit you out of My mouth.

    I believe this references mixing Law with Grace.

    Another thing pointed out was in Paul’s letters to the Corinthians vs the Galations. The church at Corinth had plenty of issues. Strife, envyings, lawsuits, temple prostitutes, etc as well as misusing the gifts of the spirit. In his letters though Paul said that God is Faithful and generally spoke positive to them. However in his letters to the Galations…O Foolish Galations. Who has bewitched you? Are you so foolish. What were the Galations doing that was so bad in Paul’s eyes? Mixing Law and Grace.

    • “Mixing Law and Grace”

      Nope. According to the messiah, sin is still sin until the world is remade. Grace is as abundant in the old as it is the new testament. But grace is only granted to those that repent (turn from sin to God), not those that keep sinning even after they know what they’re doing is wrong.

      Keep sinning and you may still be able to be a Christian, but Jesus will say, “Get away from me you doers of lawlessness.”

      Grace is a gift, but it does not give you license TO SIN, only freedom from it ruling over you. You can then choose to be obedient or return to sin.

      Nothing gets under a person’s skin that is living as Jesus lived, keeping his father’s commandments, because they are approved workmen and not ashamed, producing good fruit (mitzvot – commandments). It is this good fruit by which God’s people are known to him, by those who have a heart after God, and are recognized by his son.

      Those who do not produce good fruit, though they be grafted in by the grace of God, he will not hesitate to cut off. For if he did not hesitate to cut off the native branches for their disobedience, why would he hesitate to cut off the wild olive branches that are grafted in in their stead? He would not.

      God’s eternal blessings on you and yours, with love, as you pursue his peace to whatever end it may take you!

      • Hi Steven,
        You wrote, “But grace is only granted to those that repent (turn from sin to God), not those that keep sinning even after they know what they’re doing is wrong. Keep sinning and you may still be able to be a Christian, but Jesus will say, “Get away from me you doers of lawlessness.”
        You seem to be interpreting Matthew 7:23 to mean that Jesus was talking to people who were sinning. But that cannot be because Matt 7:21 and 22 clearly say who He was talking to. These are people who do really good and wonderful works, fully convinced in their own mind that they are doing right. Churchianity has plenty of such folks. But then they discover that Jesus does not know them because it was the will of God that they do something else.
        And your concept of grace fits the Old Testament but not the New. Look carefully at what Paul said in Romans 5:8. All humans were reconciled to God when we were still sinners. Romans 5:10 adds that we were enemies of God. In other words, the love of God for us is so great that God did not wait for us to repent before sending Jesus to take our sins upon Himself. That is grace.
        Of course you are correct that a true Christian cannot keep sinning. But what you miss is that a true Christian will be focused on our new life in Christ, on doing the will of God for us, whatever that is, rather than on sin. For us, the definition of sin is failing to do something God tells us to do. Repentance then is not a problem because it hurts so much to disappoint God that we are eager to repent. It hurts even more because we know we are already forgiven.

        Love in Christ,
        Herb

        • Herb, you said “And your concept of grace fits the Old Testament but not the New. Look carefully at what Paul said in Romans 5:8. All humans were reconciled to God when we were still sinners.” Are you sure that the “OT” concept of grace is different from the “NT”? They seem the same to me…undeserving, rebellious, stiff necked people getting blessed over and over again because of grace. I believe Deut 9 says that it was not because the Israelites were righteous that they would enter the land, but because the people already there were wicked. In fact, they (the Canaanites) were being judged by a law that supposedly did not apply to anyone other than the Israelites. That is Scripture.

          • Well Nathan, I wrote that over a year ago. Maybe I didn’t know what I was talking about! ;-) Actually you and I are saying the same thing about Romans 5:8. I did not mean grace has changed from God’s POV. You are correct that God’s continued blessing of a rebellious people is a wonderful testimony of God’s awesome grace and love.
            But you must agree that the concept that a person must repent in order to be forgiven is stated many times in the OT.

          • Good points, Nathan.

      • Steven I suggest reading romans 13:8-9 walking in love toward each other is what fulfills The law with it every Command.

        We do not live toward The letter, If you think keeping certain parts Like sabbath food laws etc…. Then your under The FULL impact of The Law! whoever says t hey keep The WHOLE law but fail just in one point they are guilty of breaking ALL. James 2:10

        WE can not fulfill the law in the means of The very letter for All had sin and had fall short of the glory of God, If keeping The law was in t he means of The very letter my friend then we are in big trouble.

        What Jesus did for us and died to bring The letter to completeness and without fault we can not do at all so if you by your understanding keeping The law as Jesus did then you better keep The letter perfect without fault.

        • Also to add to my post, if we walk in the Spirit that gives us The desire to Love, sin will not be The ruler of our lifes

        • I think it is important to remember that the Law is not evil. Paul himself calls it holy and good. G-d defines what are acts of righteousness as what the Law instructs. Grace is given where we are short, but by no means are we to give up pursuing righteousness as defined by the Law. A disciples of the Master, we are called to obedience to the Master and follow his ways, and his ways are Torah. We cannot deny this. Granted our obedience is as filthy rags, but we aren’t called to obey G-d’s Law to gain eternal life. We are called to obey G-d’s law because we love him and others, For the Law, being good, defines then what love truly is – and this is what the Master means when he commands us to love one another, modeled by his example – an example that is itself following the letter and spirit of the Law.

          • Actually, Israel, the whole letter to the Galatians denies what you say.

            Living by the Law, when it flows through us, produces carnal works and eventually kills us.

            Living by the Spirit, when He flows through us, produces Fruits of the Spirit which lead to works of service and love, and produces Life in us.

          • israel The thing is we can not keep The law as it is written, it allows no failures, we either Keep all of it or we do not keep any of it, james 2:10 if loving God is keep The letter, then you are have a big problem, by not adhering to The ALL of the law, you are then a law breaker, it impossible for anyone to love God by the letter, There are things we can not even no longer keep in the letter and The law is always seen as One UNIT.

            Festivals feasts sabbath keeping etc… this does nothing to show love to others, romans 13:8-9 put it simple clear that walking in love towards others is what Now meets all the requirements of The Law.

            if we have to follow The Law as in a check list of list of laws, we have a problem but if it just loving others in which Torah has it fulfilling then we do not have a problem.

            Also some verses

            Romans 7:5-6

            Young’s Literal Translation (YLT)

            5for when we were in the flesh, the passions of the sins, that [are] through the law, were working in our members, to bear fruit to the death;

            6and now we have ceased from the law, that being dead in which we were held, so that we may serve in newness of spirit, and not in oldness of letter.

            you see verse 5 is dealing before anyone is in The messiah, still being in the flesh, were in the flesh is past tence But Now that we are in messiah we are had ceased from being under The the law.

            The Greek for romans 7:6

            2673 katargéō (from 2596 /katá, “down to a point,” intensifying 691 /argéō, “inactive, idle”) – properly, idle down, rendering something dinert (“completely inoperative”); i.e. being of no effect (totally without force, completely brought down); done away with, cause to cease and therefore abolish; make invalid, abrogate (bring to nought); “to make idle or inactive” (so also in Euripides, Phoen., 753, Abbott-Smith).

            ["2673 (katargéō) means 'to make completely inoperative' or 'to put out of use,' according to TDNT (1.453)" (J. Rodman Williams, Renewal Theology "God, the World & Redemption," 389).]

            So you see it not just the penalty that jesus taken away, it was The law it self, under The new age The letter is now made to no effect no longer in force but we are to simple love others romans 13:8-9

            phesians 2:15

            Young’s Literal Translation (YLT)

            15the enmity in his flesh, the law of the commands in ordinances having done away, that the two he might create in himself into one new man, making peace,

            There are plenty of places that were The law is refers to as decrees or ordinances and the same greek definition of 2673 strong imply on eph 2:15

            The letter is of no effect under the new covenant age but Love is a love that helps others.

            if we help others we are not murder stealing lying doing adultry etc,,,

            God bless

    • Bama “What were the Galations doing that was so bad in Paul’s eyes? Mixing Law and Grace.” Wow…do you really believe that. Why don’t you go read Galatians chapter 4. Okay. Are you done? Now quick, were the believers in Galatia predominantly converts from paganism or Judaism? Does it make a difference? YES! It they were predominantly converts from paganism then the foolishness that they would have been committing would have been *gasp* keeping PAGAN feast days in the name of Yahusha. But that would never happen…they must have been Jews…Thats right, Paul was the apostle to the Jews right? Oh…

      • Nathan M….Really? That is how you interpret the letters to the Galatians? Can I ask what Bible you are reading? No, really, I would like to know.
        As I read the whole book of Galatians again, just now matter of fact to refresh myself, I notice in every single chapter except 1, 2 through 6, references to returning to Law and NOTHING about pagan worship.
        Gal 2:6-10 is about circumcision(The Law)
        Gal 2:11-21 is about compelling Gentiles to live at Jews, being Justified by Faith rather than Law, Paul saying he is dead to the Law, righteousness not from the Law. Even the heading for verses 11-21 is titled “No Return To The Law”
        Gal 3:1-9 is about receiving the spirit by works of the law or by faith
        Gal 3:10-14 calling the “Law” a curse
        Gal 3:15-18 confirmation that the Abrahamic covenant(inheritance based on a promise) is superior to the Mosaic covenant(inheritance of the law).
        Gal 3:19-25 Purpose of the “Law”, it was called a tutor which after faith came we are no longer under
        Gal 4:1-7 Christ was born to redeem us FROM the law
        Gal 4:8-20 The bondage referenced here is the Law. As to the days, months, seasons, and years I suppose you might have a point about following some pagan worship however in light of the rest of the letters contents this is highly doubtful. I am quite sure there were indeed many Hebrews there as well.
        Gal 4:21-31 He speaks about two covenants, i.e. the Law(Old) vs Grace(new), he uses Hagars(a bondwomen child as an example of one born under the law as being under bondage. Sarah, a freewoman, who’s son Isaac, was born of the promise, before the law was given. Being under the law is equated as being under bondage vs being free under the New.
        Gal 5:1-6 Again circumcision is brought up as the Judaizers are trying to get the new believers to now circumcise themselves. Clearly these are trying to get them under the LAW and not away from some pagan worship practices.
        Gal 5:7-15 Love fulfills the law
        Gal 5:16-26 Walking in the spirit, if led by the spirit you are NOT under the law

        I am not quite sure why you seem to have missed all the “other” evidence in the letters to the Galatians as it is quite clear to me. Basically Paul helped establish churches in Galatia. Many of them had no knowledge of Hebrew worship let alone following the Law. However after the churches were established on the Gospel of Christ Jewish believers(known as Judaizers) came into the picture to try and get the new Believers in Galatia to begin following the Law of Moses. That is where the issue of circumcision came up. These Judaizers were trying to get the Galatians, who did not do circumcision, to now make them feel they needed to to be worthy of God.

        I suggest you read some of the commentaries of the Galatians. There is some historical data in them that might interest you.

  17. Regarding point #3

    What is tattooed on the leg of the rider in Revelation? Who is this rider on a horse? If the “word was made flesh” and “dwelt among us”, what else is John referring to in 1:1? If what is translated as “word” is “logos” as you have said, that only further complicates your argument because of its meaning.

    It would help if you actually explained what IS the correct meaning of this pointed opening to John 1. What is this “logos” that became flesh and dwelt among us?

    This has been revealed to many Christians, as well, not just those who voluntarily keep the torah out of love for God and his messiah.

    Yes, I said voluntarily. It does not earn us salvation to keep the torah commands. Anyone who tells you otherwise is wrong. Salvation is a free gift of God.

    Can that gift be revoked? I would think that committing sin willfully would indeed be cause for that, based on everything written. If anyone thinks they can go out and murder people and still be part of the resurrection of the righteous because they professed faith at some point, why does Jesus say no murderers, liars, adulterers, etc. enter into the afterlife?

    If you break one of the least of the commandments, you are guilty of all according to Jesus. Why would you be of the others are no longer valid? Do Christians think it’s acceptable to break them in spite of what the messiah has said directly to the contrary?

    It’s not commandment keepers that have to worry about their reward, unless they think it earns them salvation, of course, (and none I know will tell you that), but those that continue to deny they have a way to live by or that they are accountable to in some way that may find themselves outside the courtyard or even the new Jerusalem.

    Jesus said, “I am the way, the truth, and the life.” He is actually quoting from the Psalms where the writer is talking about the torah/teachings given to Moses. The Jews he was speaking to understood this implicitly. It was Jesus and John in Revelation that equated the messiah with The Word/Torah, not someone mistranslating anything.

    To sum it up, good works are synonymous with mitzvot and the mitzvot are the commandments of God. Without good works, faith is dead. Good fruit/keeping the mitzvot are the out-workings of faith. The lack of good fruit is what is meant by being luke warm in your faith.

    • Steven,

      If what you say in your comment is true, then you are totally without hope.

      Beyond that you deny what the Greek word for ‘Word’ clearly is in John 1:1, logos. Logos is not a partial reflection of God as is Torah, but means the complete reflection of the essence of God.

      You say that salvation is a gift and that you keep the Law out of love, yet at the end of your post you state that “good works are synonymous with mitzvot and the mitzvot are the commandments of God. Without good works, faith is dead.”

      So if you do keep the commandments of the Old Covenant you get to stay saved and if you don’t keep the commands of the Old Covenant you don’t get to stay saved???

      You wrote, “Jesus said, “I am the way, the truth, and the life.” He is actually quoting from the Psalms where the writer is talking about the torah/teachings given to Moses. The Jews he was speaking to understood this implicitly. It was Jesus and John in Revelation that equated the messiah with The Word/Torah, not someone mistranslating anything.”

      Steven, Jesus was stating that HE is THE Way, THE Truth, THE Life, that NO MAN come to the Father except through Him. If what you say is true, then Torah IS salvation, and the work of the Cross was for naught. The Jews did understand what Jesus was saying; that’s why they sought to kill Him.

      And John NEVER equates Jesus with Torah – EVER. If John did, he would have used the word, nomos or graphe in John 1:1 and other places, yet he NEVER does to accomplish what you say.

      I have found it so interesting that at every turn the HRM seeks to REPLACE Jesus Christ and His work with Torah at every turn. It is blasphemous.

      -JGIG

    • Another error, if I comprehend your words, is that you are equating ANY reference to the Word as “Torah.” The Greek “Logos” doesn’t focus on the form of words but the content–it is a revealing. There is more than one revealing message. The Bible is a revelation, prophetic words are revelation, the Torah is a revelation, and most importantly, so is Yeshua. He is the Truth, that God is our salvation. He is the Way, that we should listen and follow God as a child its parent, or a sheep its shepherd. He is the Life, for His spirit dwells in us who believe in His name. He is the ultimate revelation of God, because He is God in the flesh. The Torah is merely A revelation of God, set in dead stone. Yeshua is THE revelation of God, dwelling in our hearts. Similarly, while the Bible is His perfect, inerrant, infallible book, it is ultimately just a book. It is not a substitute for His spirit. In the often-overlooked opening verses of Luke, the good doctor is writing to the “Friend of God,” who has already had a spiritual revelation, and has already been taught by the brothers. The purpose of that Gospel was to confirm what was already revealed by the Spirit and what was already taught by fellow citizens of the Kingdom. Yes, the commandments were light unto Jewish feet, and truth, and life. Yet all this is fulfilled in a yet more perfect revelation, the Messiah. If we walk in Him, and He is in us, we have fulfilled the Law, because it is fulfilled in Him who completed the work by His atoning work on the cross. We have new life in Him because of His resurrection from the dead. If we understand Who He is, God in the flesh, then what He did for us must be understood as perfect and complete. How can it be said that it was not enough, that we must add on to His work? You will no doubt fall back to “should we then sin?” Yet Paul answered this clearly in his letter to our Roman brothers–of course not! We’ve not be risen in Him unto sin, but unto righteousness! Why should we follow death, when we are full of life? The Law was written for those without the Kingdom, and now the Kingdom is within us. Why should we follow the Law that God gave to another land, of which we are no longer citizens or never were? “Faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the Word of God!” That’s not even Logos, but Rhema–God’s freshly breathed word through His Spirit! How can you have this wind moving you, as if your heart were a sail? You must be born again in the Messiah, by accepting Him for Who He is (the Lord), and what He has done for you (bought your salvation, without money)!

  18. To address Steven’s point… the Law was given to the Jewish people as a revelation of sin, and as a covenant by which they would be a nation of priests. The question “should we follow the Law or not” must be preceded by another question “does the Law apply to us or not?” The Law of Moses was given to a specific people at a specific time and place, for a specific reason. To extend the Law to everyone, for all times, in all places, for all purposes, is not a Biblical position. To justify the errant theology, HRMans have to contend that the Law itself is eternal, which is a willful misunderstanding of the Hebrew word for “everlasting.” The fruit, and this is worth mentioning, is that I’ve never heard a HRMan talk to me about Yeshua, except in order to get me to follow the Law. I’ve never heard to them talk to me about the Law in order to get me to follow Yeshua.

    • Excellent points, Lon, especially the last sentence!

      Another good point you make that I’ll modify slightly because it is sooo important for those out there conversing with Law ‘keeper’, is this:

      The questions that Law ‘keepers’ will ask you are often flawed, such as, “Does not God want us to keep ALL of His Word?” Recognize that the question has no acceptable answer, much like the classic catch-22 query, “Are you still beating your wife?” Unless you re-frame and/or narrow the question, you will be led to false conclusions or down all kinds of bunny trails by the Law ‘keeper’.

      I have an example of this in the post, Hebrew Roots Movement – “Prove to Me That God Does Not Want Us to Keep ALL of His Word”

      Great post, Lon!

    • Guess I missed this excellent post from Lon but caught it today from some other updates to this thread. This post does cause me to think a little though. If the Law was for the Hebrews only then how does it, especially the moral laws, apply to Gentiles today, for believers and non believers alike?
      I ask because the Law was basically where we got many of our Judea-Christian laws to which many of us try to follow. Now please don’t get me wrong. I’m not trying to support HR/Law Keepers. ;) No way, no how! But if the Laws were not written for all God’s people then what do we expect non believers to follow? Now I know the Bible clearly says the Hebrews were supposed to be a Chosen people to show the world how to live and worship God. So from that sense I guess you could assume the Laws(moral laws more specifically) were written for all God’s people.

      I grew up in a Christian home and attended church and Sunday school for most of my youth so I grew up with a foundation of the moral laws. I’m not sure I know how someone would think if they had been raised without the Bible, etc and then came to believe later in life.

      This makes me wonder since according to the New Covenant the Law is written on our hearts. How would one believe/feel/learn about the moral laws if they had never read the Bible or learned of the moral Laws of God? It would be interesting to see if their knowledge of the law was similar to someone who was brought up in the church. And by that I wonder if the moral code of a “written on their heart” new believer would closely follow the Levitical Laws of the Bible? Some would seem quite obvious like murder, etc but what about some of he lesser known ones like touching a dead person or drinking blood? Or all the ones related to relations with relatives. Which makes me wonder are some of these not so obvious Laws perhaps not really for us today either? And are we still stuck on some of the moral Laws from our upbringing? Just something to think about.

      And as this relates to HR in particular some of the HR people I know feel they are indeed part of the lost 10 tribes or of the 12. So from that perspective they can at least justify their need to follow the Law although misguided. I would assume this is how the accuser get’s them to follow the Law however with just another lie.

      • One thing to remember is that God’s ‘law’ is not solely defined by Mosaic Code given at Sinai. Cain knew it was wrong to murder, for instance. Moral laws have always been there – and even unreached people groups, when missionaries have gone to minister to them, have sytems of morality in place, very close to the Ten Commandments minus the Sabbath command. Romans 1 and 2 discuss this issue.

        That said, what laws apply to us today as believers in Christ? Love God, love others. I just posted this in another comment thread: Every single command that God requires from us now can be placed under ‘love God, love others’. How do we love God? On the ‘thou shalt not’ side, we don’t take His name in vain, and we don’t worship idols. On the ‘thou shalt’ side of things, if one is loving God, they express that love by serving Him – how do we serve Him? By loving others. If we are loving others we are not murdering, stealing, dishonoring, sleeping with someone other than our own spouse, bearing false witness against them, etc. And loving them goes beyond doing no harm, but extends to loving them sacrificially with works of service. For some that will mean going to Africa to dig wells to show the love of God. For others, they may become medical missionaries. For others, they may become translators to give the Word of God to a people-group who has never had it before. For others it will be raising a godly family. For others it will simply mean blooming where they’re planted; as a ditch-digger, police officer, airline agent, restaurant worker, construction worker, financial planner – wherever God has called us, we, as His, look for opportunities to love and serve others with the love of Christ.

        As for the issue of drinking blood, Acts 15 admonishes us: “29 You are to abstain from food sacrificed to idols, from blood, from the meat of strangled animals and from sexual immorality. You will do well to avoid these things.”

        I think when we are letting the Scriptures and love be our guide, we do just fine =o).

      • Jesus taught that “all the Torah” hangs from “love G-d” and “your neighbor.” Therefore the Torah, called the Law, but also called Instruction (for this is what Torah means) is G-d’s teaching and instruction in how to love G-d and others. There is then not a single command in the Torah that is not within those two categories. Even Paul calls the Law “holy” “just” “good” and “spiritual”- so how is it can the Accuser desire let alone get anyone to follow it?

        What many people don’t seem to realize is that the Law came AFTER faith and not the other way around. This means following the Law is not an activity that is somehow contrary to faith, but rather is totally complementary, if not its fruit. What then of verses that say the Law condemns? To teach us that the Law serves not just one purpose but two, depending on your relationship to faith (ie Christ). If one does not have faith, then the Law condemns. If one has faith, then the Law (the Torah) “is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the SERVANT OF GOD may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.” 2 Tim 3:16-17. Notice it doesn’t say servant of sin, or of the Accuser.

        We rob ourselves and our neighbors of the blessings that come out of loving G-d and our neighbor as defined by the Torah that hangs from those two commandments when we denigrate it as the goal of our enemy. May every Christian see that they have a Torah observant Jewish Messiah living in them who also desires to live through them.

        • Where you err, Israel, is in equating the commands of God with Old Covenant observances.

          Truth is that loving others cannot be WHOLLY defined by Torah Law. Any missionary to unreached people groups or urban areas can tell you that!

          The context of 2 Timothy 3:16-17 is the Gospel of Jesus Christ, not Torah Law:

          vs. 10-17
          10 You, however, know all about my teaching, my way of life, my purpose, faith, patience, love, endurance, 11 persecutions, sufferings—what kinds of things happened to me in Antioch, Iconium and Lystra, the persecutions I endured. Yet the Lord rescued me from all of them. 12 In fact, everyone who wants to live a godly life in Christ Jesus will be persecuted, 13 while evil men and impostors will go from bad to worse, deceiving and being deceived. 14 But as for you, continue in what you have learned and have become convinced of, because you know those from whom you learned it, 15 and how from infancy you have known the holy Scriptures, which are able to make you wise for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus. 16 All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, 17 so that the man of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.

          ALL Scripture – not just Torah Law. The New Covenant makes the Old Covenant obsolete. Are there some common commands that both encompass? Yes. Romans 13:8-14 sums it up nicely:

          8 Let no debt remain outstanding, except the continuing debt to love one another, for he who loves his fellowman has fulfilled the law. 9 The commandments, “Do not commit adultery,” “Do not murder,” “Do not steal,” “Do not covet,” and whatever other commandment there may be, are summed up in this one rule: “Love your neighbor as yourself.” 10 Love does no harm to its neighbor. Therefore love is the fulfillment of the law.
          11 And do this, understanding the present time. The hour has come for you to wake up from your slumber, because our salvation is nearer now than when we first believed. 12 The night is nearly over; the day is almost here. So let us put aside the deeds of darkness and put on the armor of light. 13 Let us behave decently, as in the daytime, not in orgies and drunkenness, not in sexual immorality and debauchery, not in dissension and jealousy. 14 Rather, clothe yourselves with the Lord Jesus Christ, and do not think about how to gratify the desires of the sinful nature.

          We are to clothe ourselves in Christ, not in Law.

    • Lon Owen you said ”The fruit, and this is worth mentioning, is that I’ve never heard a HRMan talk to me about Yeshua, except in order to get me to follow the Law. I’ve never heard to them talk to me about the Law in order to get me to follow Yeshua.” They are trying to get you to follow Him. The issue here is not salvation. The issue is how then shall we live? “This is the whole duty of man, to fear Elohim and keep His commandments” “He has shown you what he requires, that you love mercy, and live justly, and walk humbly with your Elohim.” You have salvation right? They do not think that you need to be saved, they think that you need to repent. That is renew your mind.

      • I agree. No one should ever be trying to convince anyone of anything. That is not their job. The spirit of God will either do that or it won’t, based on where your heart is or is seeking and what you are seeing or hearing. How to live, not just what to believe, is what is the question. Living like Jesus can’t be wrong.

        • Henri, welcome to JGIG!

          13 Now who is there to harm you if you are zealous for what is good? 14 But even if you should suffer for righteousness’ sake, you will be blessed. Have no fear of them, nor be troubled, 15 but in your hearts honor Christ the Lord as holy, always being prepared to make a defense to anyone who asks you for a reason for the hope that is in you; yet do it with gentleness and respect, 16 having a good conscience, so that, when you are slandered, those who revile your good behavior in Christ may be put to shame. 17 For it is better to suffer for doing good, if that should be God’s will, than for doing evil. (from 1 Pet. 3)

          You wrote, “Living like Jesus can’t be wrong.”

          If you’re trying to keep the commandments as He did, it is wrong, as the Law in the presence of the New Covenant is the Ministry of Death (2 Cor. 3). It stands not to make us righteous as Christ is Righteous, but to condemn us. Only He could keep the Law! Why? Because He is God in the flesh, perfect and without sin. When we enter by faith into what He has done, we died with Christ and to the Law (Gal. 2, Rom. 7) and were raised again with Him to New Life having received the free gift of Christ’s Righteousness (Rom. 5, 2 Cor. 5).

          1 John 4 details what it is to live like Jesus, and it’s not about commandment-keeping, but about Love:

          13 By this we know that we abide in him and he in us, because he has given us of his Spirit. 14 And we have seen and testify that the Father has sent his Son to be the Savior of the world. 15 Whoever confesses that Jesus is the Son of God, God abides in him, and he in God. 16 So we have come to know and to believe the love that God has for us. God is love, and whoever abides in love abides in God, and God abides in him.

          17 By this is love perfected with us, so that we may have confidence for the day of judgment, because as he is so also are we in this world.

          18 There is no fear in love, but perfect love casts out fear. For fear has to do with punishment, and whoever fears has not been perfected in love. 19 We love because he first loved us. 20 If anyone says, “I love God,” and hates his brother, he is a liar; for he who does not love his brother whom he has seen cannot love God whom he has not seen. 21 And this commandment we have from him: whoever loves God must also love his brother.

          Grace and peace to you,
          -JGIG

  19. Reblogged this on His Grace Is Enough and commented:
    12 truths that drive law keepers crazy. Awesome article.

  20. It always amazes me how Christians like yourself, would attack anyone who dares to use any other name than Jesus Christ. You love the the cross (which by the way was a only a straigt pole “stauros”) in your NT greek. I always wonder, if Yeshua, or sorry, I mean Jesus, was killed with a machine gun, if you would hang little machine guns around your neck, and put them on church towers etc?

    I can only thank the true Creator, as He is revealed in scripture, that He has shed the light on false prophets as yourselves, and expose you the way He does.

    • Hi Rudi, welcome to JGIG.

      I’m bending the comments policy in order to post your comment because I think you bring up a couple of interesting topics worth taking a look at.

      You wrote, “It always amazes me how Christians like yourself, would attack anyone who dares to use any other name than Jesus Christ.”

      The use of Yeshua is not attacked by me – ever. Yeshua Hamashiach is a perfectly valid transliteration of the Hebrew name for Christ Jesus. There are other variations with which I take issue at JGIG, but as a rule, Jesus/Yeshua knows Who He is and based on what God did in Acts 2, I’m pretty sure that language is not a barrier to God understanding Who He is =o).

      Now the flip side of that is regarding those who reject the name of Jesus Christ who attack those who don’t use the ‘sacred names‘. From the tone of your comment I’ll guess that you come from the sacred name camp. Me? I’m fine with that – Jesus knows Who He is and Who you’re referring to – just as He knows Who He is when others in other languages refer to Him as Jesus or their languages’ equivalent:
      Afrikaans – Jesus
      Albanian – Jezusi
      Arabic – `Isà عيسى (Islamic) / Yasū`(a) يسوع (Christian)
      Aragonese – Chesús
      Azerbaijani – İsa
      Bengali – যীশু
      Bosnian – Isus
      Breton – Jezuz
      Catalan – Jesús
      Chinese – 耶稣 (Simplified), 耶穌 (Traditional) – Yesu (Mandarin), Yasu (Cantonese)
      Cornish – Yesu
      Croatian – Isus
      Czech – Ježíš
      Dutch – Jezus
      Estonian – Jeesus
      Filipino – Hesus/Hesukristo
      Finnish – Jeesus
      French – Jésus
      Galician – Xesús
      Greek – Ιησούς (Iisoús modern Greek pronunciation)
      Haitian Creole – Jezi
      Hawaiian – Jesu
      Hebrew – Yeshu ישו (Jewish, secular) / Yeshua יֵשׁוּעַ (Christian)
      Hmong Daw – Yexus
      Hungarian – Jézus
      Indonesia – Yesus (Christian) / Isa (Islamic)
      Irish – Íosa
      Italian – Gesù
      Japanese – イエス (Iesu)
      Kazakh – Иса (Isa)
      Korean – 예수 (Yesu)
      Kurdish – Îsa
      Latvian – Jēzus
      Ligurian – Gesû
      Limburgish – Zjezus
      Lithuanian – Jėzus
      Lombard – Gesü
      मराठी-Marathi – येशू -Yeshu
      Malayalam – ഈശോ – Eesho,യേശു -Yeshu
      Mirandese – Jasus
      Maltese – Ġesù
      Neapolitan – Gèsù
      Norman – Jésus
      Occitan – Jèsus
      Piedmontese – Gesù
      Polish – Jezus
      Portuguese – Jesus
      Romanian – Isus
      Russian – Иисус (Iisus)
      Sardinian – Gesùs
      Serbian – Исус (Isus)
      Sicilian – Gesù
      Scottish Gaelic – Ìosa
      Slovak – Ježiš
      Slovenian – Jezus
      Spanish – Jesús
      Tajik – Исо (Iso)
      Tamil – இயேசு – Yesu
      Telugu – Yesu
      Thai – เยซู – “Yesu”
      Turkish – İsa
      Turkmen – Isa
      Ukrainian – Ісус (Isus)
      Uzbek – Iso
      Venetian – Jesu
      Vietnamese – Chúa Giêsu
      Welsh – Iesu
      Zulu – uJesu
      Sinhala – ජේසුස් වහන්සේ- ‍jeesus wahanse

      It’s been my observation that most folks that hold to a sacred name position have the idea that using any other than the ‘name that Yeshua’s mother gave him’ is disrespectful; in reality, however, for a name to be transliterated into so many languages – and the meaning of Who He is – is a sign of great respect and honor! And God recognizes and honors the nations (which possess unique languages and cultures):

      Revelation 21:22-27
      22 I did not see a temple in the city, because the Lord God Almighty and the Lamb are its temple. 23 The city does not need the sun or the moon to shine on it, for the glory of God gives it light, and the Lamb is its lamp. 24 The nations will walk by its light, and the kings of the earth will bring their splendor into it. 25 On no day will its gates ever be shut, for there will be no night there. 26 The glory and honor of the nations will be brought into it. 27 Nothing impure will ever enter it, nor will anyone who does what is shameful or deceitful, but only those whose names are written in the Lamb’s book of life.

      The substance of what is happening in Revelation 21 is the Glory of God, not the language by which those of the nations refer to God. Anyway, enough about that. If you want to call Him YHWH/Yeshua or God/Jesus, the position here at JGIG is that either is fine; God/Jesus/Holy Spirit is/are smart enough to figure out Who we’re talking/praying/referring to.

      As for the Cross, there of course is debate on both sides, a cross or a stake. I take my cue from these verses:

      Matthew 27:37
      And over his head they put the charge against him, which read, “This is Jesus, the King of the Jews.”

      The verse is specific in that it says that the charge was nailed ‘over His Head’, indicating that His Hands were not above His Head. So to me it makes sense that His Arms were outstretched – with each Hand nailed to the cross-piece of the Cross.

      Also this:

      John 20:25
      So the other disciples told him, “We have seen the Lord.” But he said to them, “Unless I see in his hands the mark of the nails, and place my finger into the mark of the nails, and place my hand into his side, I will never believe.”

      That verse indicates that nailS – TWO – were place in the Hands of Christ – not ONE nail, as would be the case with His hands being put above His Head on a stake. Again, this indicates that His Arms would have been outstretched, with each Hand nailed to opposite ends of the cross-piece of the Cross.

      You wrote, “I always wonder, if Yeshua, or sorry, I mean Jesus, was killed with a machine gun, if you would hang little machine guns around your neck, and put them on church towers etc?”

      Rudi, Who do people think of when they see a Cross?

      While the cross was used as a method of execution, the Cross of Christ (now empty and death triumphed over), is a symbol of Life and Freedom. Don’t underestimate the significance of the Cross:

      Galatians 6:14
      But far be it from me to boast except in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, by which the world has been crucified to me, and I to the world.

      1 Corinthians 1:18
      For the word of the cross is folly to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God.

      1 Corinthians 2:2
      For I decided to know nothing among you except Jesus Christ and him crucified.

      If folks want to wear a Cross and what/Who it represents, I have no problem with that, because “to us who are being saved it is the power of God.”

      You also wrote, “I can only thank the true Creator, as He is revealed in scripture, that He has shed the light on false prophets as yourselves, and expose you the way He does.”

      Well, Rudi, I’ve defended against your accusations with Scripture. Our position in Christ does not depend on what Name we use, whether or not we believe there was a cross-piece on the Cross, or if you wear a Cross around your neck or decorate/signify a building with the Cross of Christ. What matters is if we have faith in Him for Who He truly is, what He did, what that actually accomplished, and who we who believe are in Him.

      Grace and peace,
      -JGIG

    • Rudi,

      While I totally disagree with JGIG and her stand on certain things. Your comment is only going to add fuel to an already raging fire of indignation. I do not agree with the “Sacred Namers”…as it tends to lead to the belief that unless you are saying it the way “THEY SAY” then “somehow” you are not “saved”.

      After all, it was Elohim that confused the languages at the Tower of Babel. One language is as good as another.

      Shalom,

      Eleazar Times

  21. I love how you use chunks of Bible verses instead of singular verses. That really helps preserve context, in my opinion! You’ve got some really great points here on this site and I’d love to use these teachings to help reach others who have become disillusioned by the HRM.

    • Thanks, Dragon2454, the inclusion of entire passages is quite on purpose, thanks for noticing =o).

      I’m glad that you’ve found JGIG to be a helpful resource.

      Grace and Peace,
      -JGIG

  22. You didn’t even acknowledge the Bible’s definition of SIN – 1 John 3:4 (SIN = transgression of the Law, Lawlessness).

    Idiot.

    You are still in your sin and need to repent.

    • Hi Alicia,

      You may want to read more carefully. Item 5 clearly states,

      5. It was our SIN that was nailed to the Cross, not just man’s additions to or the curses of the Law. What was blotted out and nailed to the cross? What stood against us? Convicting us in the sight of God? That which the Law defines – SIN.

      Jesus dealt with sin by taking all sin upon Himself at the Cross, providing propitiation and forgiveness for the whole world (John 3, 2 Cor. 5, 1 Jn. 2).

      Alicia, thank you for your ‘concern’, but I’m firmly in Christ, having repented and accepted the forgiveness and the Free Gift of Righteousness and New Life which He secured for us through the Work of the Cross, His Resurrection, His Ascension, and His position as our Perfect High Priest. God says that in Christ, the very Righteousness of God has been given as a gift to me and that I am a New Creation in Him (Rom. 5, 2 Cor 5). Not only that, but as one in Christ, I’m already, in the Spirit, seated with Christ in the heavenly places (Eph. 2).

      So while the Enemy comes to accuse (using the Law), as one in Christ, I know that the Enemy has been disarmed (the Law being his weapon, see Col. 2), because as one in Christ, I have died to the Law to be joined to another, Who is Christ, in order to bear fruit unto God (Rom. 7, Gal. 5)

      Grace and Peace
      -JGIG

    • Alicia, first of all I cannot believe you’re gonna point out the definition of sin and then turn around and call someone an idiot. You lost all credibility with that.

      Now for the Bible definition of sin. Are you sure you’ve got the correct definition?

      The Greek word used as sin in 1John 3:4 is Hamartia. Do you know that is a noun! A noun denotes a person, place or thing. The Greek word for sin also used sometimes is Hamartano. That one is a verb. I am really hoping you know the difference between a word used as a noun vs one used as a verb.

      The word transcribed as sin is from the Greek word Hamartia(noun) is used a whole lot more in the Bible than the word Hamarteno(verb). Understanding those differences can make a whole lot of difference in how one interprets the Bible.

      The word sin when used as a noun(Hamartia) describes our fight as Believers or our “Sin” nature not the act of sinning(a verb). Our sin nature came because of original sin(noun). In other words Adam’s sin. Because of Adam’s sin we are all born sinners or with a “sin nature”. There is no way around that fact. Once you become a Believer you are freed from your sin nature(noun). However the propensity to sin(verb) is still there.

      Most of the time the word sin is used in the Bible is describing our sin nature which was defeated on the Cross for those who believe. As Believer’s we were made Righteous by what Christ did on the Cross. We are NOT made unrighteous by missing the mark(sin = verb).

    • Idiot.

      You are still in your sin and need to repent.

      Well, Alicia, that does not sound very convincing when we consider all of the verses in the NT that say the opposite. For example, what do you do with this verse;

      Romans 5:8 But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us. (KJV)

      But there is still hope for you. I remember calling believers idiots when I was still an enemy of God.
      Love in Christ,
      Herb

  23. Hi there…So I have been following the HRM for a month or so and have been very motivated by it but I am seeing a lot of valid discussion here. One thing I want some input on is your thoughts on the following:

    Feast days/appointed times- I know you don’t believe that we need to keep them per the law but considering the fact that Passover/1st day of unleavened bread/first fruits/pentecost were profetic in that Last supper/death/resurection/spirit came down occuring thousands of years later on those appointed times, wouldn’t it be beneficial to know that and also of the following 3 appointed times which were not yet fulfilled? I took the following from another website detailed:

    While the first four Festivals occur in close proximity, an entire season passes before the Fall Feasts begin. This long period represents the dispensation of grace that we now live in. The last three feasts (Trumpets, Atonement and Tabernacles) are celebrated in the Fall season and are yet to be fulfilled so they remain prophetic in nature.

    *** Feast of the Trumpets – pictures the Rapture of the Church
    *** Feast of Atonement – pictures the Second Coming of Jesus Christ
    *** Feast of Tabernacles – pictures the Millennial Reign of Jesus Christ

    The final three feasts are also known as Rosh HaShanah (Feast of the Trumpets), Yom Kippur (Feast of Atonement), and Sukkot (Feast of Tabernacles).

    The Feast of Trumpets may soon find its prophetic fulfillment. Here are some reasons why the Rapture may occur during this Festival:

    All the Spring Feasts were fulfilled at Christ’s first coming, and on the exact day of the feast. All the Fall Feasts picture the Second Advent, and the Feast of Trumpets is the first of the fall feasts, picturing the rapture.

    The Feast of Trumpets is when the “last trump” of the rapture of 1st Corinthians 15 is blown.

    The Feast of Trumpets is known as the Wedding of the Messiah, and the Church is the Bride of Christ, and the rapture is when the Church is caught up to heaven to be wed with Christ.

    The Feast of Trumpets happens on the “new moon”, which is 29.5 days after the last one, meaning it might occur on the 29th or 30th day, nobody knows for sure. “Of that day or hour no man knows” is an expression referring to this feast, and thus, the rapture.

    “Of that day or hour no man knows, but my Father only” is an expression used by a groom when asked when his wedding will be. He says this because it is his Father that will tell him when his preparations on the bridal chamber are completed and it is time. Again, the wedding pictures the rapture.

    The “Open Door” of the rapture in Matthew 25, and Revelation 3, & Revelation 4:1 is a symbol of the Feast of Trumpets. [Ezekiel 46:1] “Thus says the Lord GOD: The gate of the inner court that faces east shall be shut on the six working days; but on the Sabbath day it shall be opened and on the day of the new moon it shall be opened”.

    We are told that the new moon and the Feasts of the Lord are a shadow of things to come in Colossians 2:16-17. Since the Feast of Trumpets is the only Feast of the Lord that falls on a new moon, we should take particular note.

    There are seven days of awe in between the Feast of Trumpets and the Day of Atonement. These picture the seven years of Tribulation. Atonement pictures Satan being defeated and cast away at the end of the Tribulation. If you add the two-day Trumpets feast, and the Day of Atonement, the 7 days of awe are “ten days of tribulation” which might be referred to in Revelation 2:10.

    In the Jewish Wedding, the groom comes for his bride “like a thief in the night” to take (sieze / rapture) her away and into the bridal chamber for the bridal week at his father’s house.

    The Feast of Trumpets is also known as the coronation of the Messiah, when He will start reigning as king, thus the beginning of the “Day of the Lord”, which includes the Tribulation.

    God’s plan for humanity is clearly found in Leviticus 23 through the establishment of the Seven Feasts. The number seven throughout the Bible represents completeness. Just as seven days finish a weekly cycle, so could seven festival occasions complete the work of God on Earth.

    #2: We are being taught that Easter and Christmas are rooted in paganism and after all of the research I’ve done, I would whole-heartedly agree…What do you think? If we are warned repeatedly not to follow the traditions of men, and we know that god battled paganism throughout the entire old testiment, and we know that Christmas and Easter are not found anywhere in the bible, would it not be smart to er on the side of caution and not celebrate them?

    • Hi Ken, welcome to JGIG =o).

      I see you have quite the list that lends itself to the idea that the Law is not fulfilled in Christ – yet.

      Jesus said He came to fulfill the Law. Did He, or did He lie?

      Is Jesus the fulfillment of the shadows or isn’t He?

      Either He is or He is not. There is no middle ground on that one.

      Here’s how I see how the fulfillment has already occurred in Christ:

      Did He come? (Tabernacles, Trumpets) 1 and 2

      Did He do the work of the Cross? (Passover) 3

      Did He rise from the dead? (Firstfruits) 4

      Did He Ascend to the Father? (Celebration of God’s Provision – Feast of Weeks) 5

      Did He send His Holy Spirit? (Pentecost and Tabernacles, as we, the Body of Christ are now the Temple of God) 6 and 7

      Is He the fulfillment of those shadows or not?

      I believe that He is.

      A also am content to wait and see how God will bring about the Final Things. Many think they have it all figured out. They don’t =o). Neither do I, ha! But I’m in Christ and He’s in me and I can rest in Him. No worries =o).

      As for the celebration of the Birth and Resurrection of Christ, you can read more about my views on that here

      Grace and Peace,
      -JGIG

      • Wow, JGIG!!! What a lovely morning. I liked Ken’s post and your response. But I was really blown away by your outstanding views on celebration of the Birth and Resurrection of Christ.
        Love in Christ,
        Herb

  24. To begin, I just want to thank JGIG for creating this site. It has been a great resource and an equally great comfort to me during the past year. My wife has been drawn into the HRM and I have sadly watched her become filled with a self righteous, legalistic and supremacist attitude. I love her more than anything, and it breaks my heart every day to see what this awful movement has done to her. Sadly, like all those in the HRM, it is near impossible in trying to reason. All questions are met with questions, and ultimately responded to in the same way – with the claws out.

    Either way, that is neither here nor there. I wanted to post this question in a different article on JGIG, but I can’t seem to locate it anywhere. I’ve asked this on a number of ‘Torah observant’ sites and the question has either never been posted or never answered. It would fall under number ten in the above mentioned Undeniable Truths article with regards to the hermeneutics that the HRM employs to twist the Gospel.

    I have spent a great deal of time comparing the KJV against a few of the HRM versions. While blatant misuse of every key word, verse or chapter runs rampant in all of them, two verses from one particular version have really bugged me. They are found in II Thessalonians 2:3-4 and Romans 10:4.

    II Thessalonians 2:3-4 (KJV)
    3 Let no man deceive you by any means: for that day shall not come, expect there come a falling away first, and the man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition;
    4 Who opposeth and exalteth himself above all that is called God, or that is worshipped; so that he as God sitteth in the temple of God, shewing himself that he is God.

    In the HRM version, the same verses read:

    3 let no one deceive you in any way. Because when the apostasy would come first, then the man of lawlessness, the son of destruction, would be revealed.
    4 He is the one who opposes Torah (Teaching) and exalts himself upon every Godly saying of object or worship, and thus seats himself in the sanctuary of God, proclaiming himself, that he is God.

    WHAT????

    Romans 10:4 (KJV)
    4 For Christ if the end of the law for righteousness to everyone that believeth.

    In the HRM version, it magically becomes:

    4 because the purpose of Torah (Teaching) is Messiah in order to provide righteousness for everyone who believes.

    WHAT!?!?

    So my question really goes out to the HRM folks whom post here. Explain these verses to me. Explain how, by any literal means (not just wishful thinking) these verses could have been retranslated to this particular HRM version. What method was used? From where or what sources were these (and countless other) verses taken? I know it sounds like a simple or uneducated question, but it’s really just back to basics. I would love to hear a response. Don’t reply with ‘Anything written by Paul is so misunderstood’. The Word of God is perfectly clear. Don’t respond with ‘You have to understand it with a Jewish mindset’. God gave His Gospel to the world, not just the Jews. I don’t need to be Jewish to understand the NEW Testament. If the above verses WERE translated based solely on a mindset, then that is only personal opinion and thus totally unreliable as a literal translation. Don’t reply using sources that are not biblical. I would like to hear word for word explanation of how these verses can be translated from scripture into this version of the Word.

    Thank you again to all those who uphold the Gospel of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. Rebuke the wolf clothed as a sheep when it comes to your door. Say no to deceivers and preachers of false doctrines. Stand fast in the truth and freedom of the Gospel and rejoice in the liberty and love that Christ has given and brought to us. Share His name to the world. Love your brother, your neighbor and your adversary. Fulfill the royal law.

    Christ be with you all.

  25. I got a friend who is always telling me we have to keep Torah Law because Jesus Kept Torah Law.

    He wears 2 different types of fabrics like all the time….

    • Jesus kept the Law as one born under the Law. We who are in Christ have died to the Law. The following is excerpted from this post at JGIG, in response to the idea taught by those in the HRM that we died only to the Law of adultery, but must still ‘keep’ ‘all’ of the Law:

      Romans 7:4
      4 So, my brothers, you also died to the law through the body of Christ, that you might belong to another, to him who was raised from the dead, in order that we might bear fruit to God.

      Those in Christ do not die to a single law, but to THE Law, as Romans 7:4 clearly states.

      Did you die just to the Law regarding adultery? If the law of adultery died, like the husband did in the scenario presented in verses 1-3, that might make sense, as the rest of the Law could remain intact, but the Scripture does not say that the law of adultery died, it says that those in Christ died. When someone dies, they die to all laws. So dying to a single law makes no sense in light of Romans 7:6, which says this:

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

      The written code, as we know, is the Ten Commandments and the other 600+ specific commands documented by God in Torah.

      In Romans 7:4-6, the Law doesn’t die, WE do!

      To what?

      To the Law.

      Why?

      To be able to be joined to Another.

      To Whom?

      To Christ!

      Hang on to your hats for this one: If you go back to the Law (which you have died to and been released from in order to be joined to Christ), you commit spiritual adultery (see part 4 on this page).

      Whether you view the Law as a husband, as in the example in verses 1-3, as a Schoolmaster/Tutor/Guardian, as in Galatians 3:21-28, or anything else, you cannot be joined to both the Law and to Christ!

      . . . we have been released from the law so that we serve in the new way of the Spirit, and not in the old way
      of the written code.

      Which brings me to a few rhetorical questions: If you are now dead to just the Law of adultery, does it now matter if you commit adultery? Is adultery no longer a part of the jots and tittles, none of which were supposed to pass away? If you believe that you died just to the law of adultery, what is the ‘written code’ spoken of by Paul – just the Law of adultery? Or maybe the passage is referring to the Oral Traditions? No, that can’t be it, because the Oral Traditions include all of the Law plus other stuff. Silly? Perhaps, but you get the point.

      Torah folk that I’ve talked with tell me that if we interpret Romans 7:4 to mean the whole Law then it must be okay to go out and murder, steal, commit adultery, etc. Yet, if we go with that logic and couple it with the HRM interpretation of Romans 7:4-6 (which is standard in the HRM beyond Staley’s teaching), then it must be okay to commit adultery since that’s a law you’ve died to, yes?

      Well I certainly don’t believe that! Why? Because I died with Christ:

      Galatians 2:20-21
      20 I have been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me. And the life I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me. 21 I do not nullify the grace of God, for if righteousness were through the law, then Christ died for no purpose.

      The Scriptures tell us clearly that those in Christ have died to the Law — all of it.

      In the New Covenant, Grace teaches us and the Spirit leads us (Titus 2:11-14, Galatians 5:18-26). If we are led by the Spirit, we are not under Law (Galatians 5:18), which coincides to being dead to the Law. Not only that, but what does Romans 7:5, which is sandwiched in between verses 4 and 6, say?

      Romans 7:5
      5 For while we were living in the flesh, our sinful passions, aroused by the law, were at work in our members to bear fruit for death.

      I like the idea of being dead to that which arouses our sinful passions! Because as one in Christ, I’m not looking for license to sin, rather for how to sin less and less. The Law does not show us how to accomplish that. The Scriptures say that in us, the Law actually stirs up sinful passions rather than to tamp down sinful passions (Romans 5:20, Romans 7:5-11, 1 Corinthians 15:56).

      Living in Grace and by the Spirit does not leave us in a vacuum, floating about with no compass to guide us! Notice in Galatians 5:21 where it says, “I do not nullify the grace of God, for if righteousness were through the law, then Christ died for no purpose.”

      So how does righteousness come? Grace. (See Hebrew Roots Movement – Man’s Righteousness or God’s Righteousness? and Grace or Law? How Then, Shall We Live?, and also Parts 2 and 5 on this page for more on this topic.)

      We also know from the Scriptures that the Fruit of the Spirit is love (Galatians 5:22-23) and that love, which does no harm to its neighbor fulfills the Law (Romans 13:8-10) because someone loving others is not murdering, stealing, committing adultery, bearing false witness, etc.

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

      So we see that in the New Covenant, Grace teaches us and the Spirit leads us (Titus 2:11-14, Galatians 5:18-26). The Fruit of that is Love, which fulfills the Law (Romans 13:8-10).

      You can read more here: Gateways into the Hebrew Roots Movement – An Examination of ‘Identity Crisis’ and Related Teachings of Jim Staley

    • As for the mixing of fabrics thing – wearing a cotton T-shirt and wool overcoat isn’t the issue according to the Law, but wearing fabrics made of mixed fibers is the issue. Wool and linen fibers mixed together in the same garment is what the Bible talks about, and that mainly in relation to priestly garments. Law-keepers take various stands regarding mixed fibers, some saying the Scriptures are specific only about wool/linen, but not other, modern-day blends. Others take it to the other extremes and preach the wearing of linen because it has ‘positive frequencies’ and resulting ‘health benefits’.

      Like many practices/beliefs in Law-keeping sects, the striving to ‘keep’ Old Covenant Laws overtakes who they are in Christ, and they start serving in the way of the written code instead of by the Spirit. Then they start doing works of the flesh instead of bearing the Fruit of the Spirit.

      If we are led by the Spirit, we are not under the Law (Galatians 5:18).

      • JGIG writes: If we are led by the Spirit, we are not under the Law (Galatians 5:18).

        That is the same Spirit Jesus speaks of in this verse.
        (John 3:8 KJV) The wind bloweth where it listeth, and thou hearest the sound thereof, but canst not tell whence it cometh, and whither it goeth: so is every one that is born of the Spirit.

        This means we cannot predict where this Holy Spirit will lead us or what the Spirit will have us do, as Jesus demonstrated and as every Christian experiences.
        Thus it is foolish to try to decide with our own mind what we will or won’t do in our attempt to do what we believe to be the will of God for us.
        Here is an example. As I read all of your long-winded and wonderful response to Beare, what Jesus said in John 3:8 popped into my head. I decided to ignore it and go on about my business. Several times I tried to move on to other email, but kept coming back. Finally I had to look up, copy and paste John 3:8 and click on reply.
        Did the Holy Spirit lead me to do this? I think so, but no one really knows.

        Love in Christ,
        Herb

        • I’m long-winded?! =o)

          I put that excerpt there because it’s a common argument from Torah folk that we should keep the Law because Jesus kept it . . . just showing how we died to the Law and the HRM angles regarding Romans 7:1-6. Yeah, yeah . . . sometimes it requires being long winded =o).

          Thanks, Herb, for your excellent, short comment =o)!

          Love in Christ,
          -JGIG

  26. I dont know who you are, but l do know this, you are in error. Christian Flakes like you are scattered thru out Yeshuas Kingdom.

    You preach other doctorines of demons & man….for the uneducated Antichrist & JEZABEEL. You ought go & Repent.

    For all who read this Imposter’s commennts..pls take your time & go & READ DEUTORONMY 4:1-4 & 8: 1-4.
    ISIAHAH 56 & 66
    & MATHEW 5:17-20

    & IF YOU ARE SO INCLINED…READ REVELATION ABOUT THE 144000 WHO KEPT the COMMANDMENTS.

    BE BLESSED TO ALL WHO READ THE ABOVE SCRIPTURES
    …MAY YHWH OPEN YOUR EYES & HEARTS

    ROBERT. …AUSTRALIA

  27. I am responding to this as a Jewish believer in Messiah as well as a son of the covenant affirmed by the Lord in the wilderness. I cannot speak about the Hebrew Roots Movement, only the Messianic Jewish movement to which I belong. While I will grant that you are correct in saying many in the MJ movement are Gentiles and not Jewish, and I assume by inference most in the Hebrew Roots movement are not Jewish, I will disagree with your assert action that “Jews who are believers in Jesus/Yeshua typically call themselves Jewish/Hebrew Christians or simply, Christians.” I am a Messianic Jew by faith and a ethnic Jew by birth, not a Christian, though I share a common faith in Yeshua with my Gentile brethren.

    (1) Yes, it is the NEW Covenant, not the RENEWED Covenant.
    Correct, however the major difference is the location of the writing if said covenant, our hearts not tablets of stone. The covenant, at least for Israel, remains the same. Jeremiah 31:31-34. Please note that this NC was made with the house of Israel and house of Judah (vs:31).

    (2) .Paul’s letters, read as written, really do teach that the Body of Christ is no longer under the Law.” Again correct, as to entrance into the Body of Messiah. However, distinctions between people were never removed, male and female remain distinct though one on Messiah; just as the circumcised and uncircumcised need to remain as they were before entering into the Body (1 Corinthians 7:18-20).

    (3) “God is eternal, Torah is not. Torah is created, not eternal.” Will allow the Word to speak for itself, Hebrews 4:12; 1Peter 1:23. But then again, you may not consider the Torah as the Word of the Lord, so there is no ground to discuss here.

    (4) Catch 22? “If Yeshua is the Living Torah, then the Law DID die?” Colossians 1:19; 2:9; as well as Philippians 2:5-8 seem to indicate that Yeshua, as deity, died on the cross – by your interpretation, DID G-D die?

    (5) No question that “It was our SIN that was nailed to the Cross…” Torah observance does not do away with sin, it shows us when we fall short and now through Yeshua’s finished work we do no longer depend on animal blood.

    (6) “The Holy Spirit is perfectly capable of sanctifying the believer apart from observing Mosaic Covenant Law.” We are justified through faith, we live in covenant fidelity throughout all our generations.

    (7) “Law is not law unless it is enforced.” Granted, picking the blessings while rejecting the curses is wrong. However, in traditional Judaic understanding, we know there are things we can do as well as things we cannot. There are laws that are only applicable in the land of Israel; while there are many that will only be applicable if and when the Lord returns the Temple to us. The streams of messianic Judaism that I am familiar with are trying to sort these out after 15 to 18 thousand years of the “church” telling us that we are no longer Jews but now Gentile Christians. Sad that in the first “church council” James did not want to trouble the Gentile believers that were coming to faith, but since at least the 2nd Council of Nicaea, the church has been “troubling” Jews who were coming to the faith.

    (8) “The fruit… is not good.” Your opinion, to which you are entitled. I cannot speak to the Hebrew Roots, but the MJ communities I am familiar with speak differently. No question there are problems, I assume the Christian denominations and sects have a problem or two as well.

    (9) “Torah is not our access to God…” You are repeating yourself so I will as well. We are all, Jew and non-Jew, justified by faith in messiah alone, not by works of the law. The Torah was given to set a people apart, throughout all their generations. The prophet Jeremiah stated that so long as day and night remained so long as the fixed order of the universe remained; so would the Jewish people (31:35-37).

    (10) “The hermeneutic used by doctrines is fluid.” And your’s is not? Please. Every teacher chooses his hermeneutical methodology to prove his or her point while defending against the supposed heresy of the other.

    (11) “Those in Law-keeping sects seek to make the simple complicated.” It could be said that the Law-free sects cheapen the grace of the Lord. There are rules and standards that govern even the body of Messiah. A Pharisee (I know, he wasn’t a “believer”) asked Yeshua about the greatest commandment. Yeshua responded with two from the Torah, Deuteronomy 6:4-5 and Leviticus 19:18. Much of the rest of the Torah is commentary on these two passages, teaching us how to fulfill these two specifics of Yeshua’s response. I assume that before going out to play baseball, football, or even cricket, one would either attempt to learn the rules or find someone that already had and try to follow. Law-free folks, I guess just go out and putter around, hoping for the best.

    (12) “Law ‘keepers’ cannot deal with contextual writings written to the Body of Christ, or their theology falls apart.” Interestingly enough, the same claim is made from my side of the fence.

    I believe it would be safe to say that those who claim to be “Law-free” also are a lot like Forest Gump’s understanding, “They too are like a box of chocolates – ya never know what you’re gonna get!”

    • Hi Michael, welcome to JGIG! Sorry for the delay in posting and responding to your comment; it has been an exceedingly busy season for our family of nine the past several weeks.

      Thanks for your well-organized comment. I’ve had to set a length limit for comments, but since yours is so well laid out, I’ll waive the 500 word limit =o). I’ll answer the first part of your comment, then take the numbered comment point by point in a separate response.

      Regarding ‘Messianic Judaism’ – Jewish believers in Christ and Christians who happen to be Jewish and how they refer to themselves: Jews - using the contemporary definition which includes all of the Tribes of Israel, though I do understand the distinctions within those tribes; even Paul referred to all of Israel as Jews and it was understood as to whom he was referring – and Gentiles who consider themselves to be as Scripture defines, “One New Man in Christ”, walk in unity with one another in the midst of their differences instead of seeking to ‘be separate’ because of those differences, be they cultural, racial, preferential, etc. If that’s you and you choose to worship in the New Covenant as an ethnic Jew, that’s great. If you are worshipping as you do to be Torah compliant to ‘please God’, however, you’ve missed it. Torah pursuance demands isolation; the New Covenant requires that we go out into all the world and preach the Good News, not isolate ourselves from it.

      In the Old Covenant, if a priest touched something/someone unclean, they became unclean; in the New Covenant, when someone unclean touches Jesus, they become clean. The dynamic of the Gospel is completely different than that of the Law. It is to redeem and transform, not to isolate and withdraw.

      That’s the beauty of the New Covenant: it allows for those in Christ to flourish in unity – not cultural uniformity – in Him. If you choose to fellowship as an adherent to Messianic Judaism that’s certainly your liberty in Christ, but it’s just as certainly not required by God for you to live according to Old Covenant ordinances, nor are there additional ‘blessings’ to Gentile believers if they choose to live an MJ (or HRM) lifestyle. In fact, there is a solid argument to be made that if you choose to adhere to such a lifestyle to be ‘pleasing to God’, according to the Old Covenant itself, you are actually bringing curses on yourself and making Christ of no effect in this life (Gal. 3:10, 5:4, James 2:10).

      Messianics (Jews and Gentiles) will often say that one of the goals of the MJ/HRM belief systems is to reach Jews with the Gospel (or, more interestingly, many will use the phrase, “bring them to jealousy” rather than be concerned with bringing them the Gospel), but Messianic congregations are growing in numbers of Gentiles, not Jews (some estimate 80% Gentiles to 20% Jews), so the fruit is not living up to the claims. In fact, many Jews find the Messianic movements offensive, recognizing them to be a hybrid religious expression, standing neither wholly in the Old nor the New Covenant.

      The Gospel is Good News to all tongues, tribes, and nations, all cultures, all social positions, all sin levels. Jewish people who come to Christ as Savior do so because they have heard the Good News of His Work of the Cross and what that accomplished. They enter into the New Covenant by faith, just as we all do. Culturally they are free to remain Jewish, but Old Covenant ordinances are not required to keep them in covenant with God - the High Priesthood of Christ accomplishes that – nor are Old Covenant practices required to get blessings that are already ours in Christ. And that’s the thing: folks are doing the MJ/HRM thing because they think they must to remain in covenant with God, when it’s not about what they do that keeps them in, but what Christ has already done that keeps us secure in the New Covenant in Him.

      • What a marvelous response that is, JGIG. First email I opened this morning and I couldn’t stop reading. This is a keeper.
        Love in Christ,
        Herb

    • To continue in answering your comment –

      (1) “Yes, it is the NEW Covenant, not the RENEWED Covenant.”
      You wrote, “Correct, however the major difference is the location of the writing if said covenant, our hearts not tablets of stone. The covenant, at least for Israel, remains the same. Jeremiah 31:31-34. Please note that this NC was made with the house of Israel and house of Judah (vs:31).”

      —> Vs. 32 – It will not be like the covenant
      I made with their ancestors
      when I took them by the hand
      to lead them out of Egypt,

      You say it’s the location of the covenant (heart vs. stone), but Scripture simply does not support that, or all aspects of the Law would still be in effect, including the Levitical priesthood, an intrinsic part of the Law. Christ, of the Tribe of Judah, is the Perfect and Forever High Priest of the Covenant by which we now draw near to God – New Priesthood, New Law.

      You correctly point out that the New Covenant was promised to Israel and the house of Judah. It’s not an either you’re a part of Israel or you’re not able to be a part of the covenant, however. We enter into the Covenant through Christ, by faith – entrance into the covenant isn’t by bloodline but by faith:

      26 So in Christ Jesus you are all children of God through faith, 27 for all of you who were baptized into Christ have clothed yourselves with Christ. 28 There is neither Jew nor Gentile, neither slave nor free, nor is there male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus. 29 If you belong to Christ, then you are Abraham’s seed, and heirs according to the promise. (from Gal. 3)

      There’s a whole lot in the New Covenant Scriptures about sonship and adoption in Christ, which deepens the truth of Jews and Gentiles becoming One New Man in Christ and all of them partaking in the New Covenant in Christ.

      (2) “Paul’s letters, read as written, really do teach that the Body of Christ is no longer under the Law.”
      You wrote, “Again correct, as to entrance into the Body of Messiah. However, distinctions between people were never removed, male and female remain distinct though one on Messiah; just as the circumcised and uncircumcised need to remain as they were before entering into the Body (1 Corinthians 7:18-20).”

      —> Understood and we are in agreement about that. It goes to support that in Christ, no matter our natural state, in Christ we are One. Also goes to support that the New Covenant is available to all through Christ.

      (3) “God is eternal, Torah is not. Torah is created, not eternal.”
      You wrote, “Will allow the Word to speak for itself, Hebrews 4:12; 1Peter 1:23. But then again, you may not consider the Torah as the Word of the Lord, so there is no ground to discuss here.”

      —> First, let’s establish that I believe that all Scripture is God-breathed and valuable for instruction in righteousness as 2 Tim. 3:16-17 declares. Second, let’s take a look at the Scriptures you gave to support your assertion that Torah is eternal:

      For the word of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any two edged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart. (Heb. 4:12)

      The ‘word of God’ there is the Greek, logos, which refers to Christ, not nomos, which refers to the Law. Other translations say that the “word of God is living and active . . . and discerning of the thoughts and intentions of the heart.” The Law never could do that. The next verse you use to support the eternal nature of Torah also tells us something that the Law could never do:

      Being born again, not of corruptible seed, but of incorruptible, by the word of God, which liveth and abideth for ever. (1 Peter 1:23)

      That in no way says that Torah is eternal, but does say that we are born again by the word of God! What or Who is this verse speaking of? Again, logos, which refers to Christ, is used here for ‘word’, not nomos, which refers to the Law. Again, the Law/Torah is not a living entity; the Word in 1 Peter 1:23 clearly “liveth and abideth forever”. To make the Law/Torah into a living entity is to place it in the Godhead or more accurately, make an idol of it.

      I do agree; there is no ground to discuss this further. You are in complete error here.

      (4) “Catch 22? If Yeshua is the Living Torah, then the Law DID die?”
      You wrote, “Colossians 1:19; 2:9; as well as Philippians 2:5-8 seem to indicate that Yeshua, as deity, died on the cross – by your interpretation, DID G-D die?”

      —> First of all, let me commend you for you stand on the Deity of Christ, which some Messianics/HRMers deny! Good for you! Now let’s address those Scriptures, which I will link to so that this post does not become longer than need be: Col. 1:19, Col. 2:9, Phil. 2:5-8

      Of course God did not die on the Cross. That said, Christ Jesus was fully God and fully man, as Philippians says in the passage linked to above,

      Who, being in very nature God,
      did not consider equality with God something to be used to his own advantage;

      rather, he made himself nothing
      by taking the very nature of a servant,
      being made in human likeness.

      And being found in appearance as a man,
      he humbled himself
      by becoming obedient to death—
      even death on a cross!

      Back to the original point of contention, and that is the claim by those in MJ/HRM circles that ‘Yeshua is the Living Torah': Absolutely not. We see that Jesus is eternal, Torah is not. We see that we are ‘born again by the Word of God which liveth and abideth forever’ and it is clear from the Greek that it is the logos of God Who is being spoken of, not the nomos of God. Most MJ/HRMers will agree that Torah cannot save, but have this huge blind spot when they claim that ‘Yeshua is the Living Torah’.

      (5) No question that “It was our SIN that was nailed to the Cross…”
      You wrote, “Torah observance does not do away with sin, it shows us when we fall short and now through Yeshua’s finished work we do no longer depend on animal blood.”

      —> A few verses and then a rhetorical question or two:

      18 The former regulation is set aside because it was weak and useless 19 (for the law made nothing perfect), and a better hope is introduced, by which we draw near to God. (from Heb. 7)

      18 All this is from God, who reconciled us to himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation: 19 that God was reconciling the world to himself in Christ, not counting people’s sins against them. (from 2 Cor. 5)

      Why are you using the Law for a measuring stick when a better hope has been introduced by which we draw near to God?

      Do you not realize that the Law separates you from God – that it is the ministry of death, it was designed to condemn you?

      Why are you trying to measure your actions by Torah Law and then come to the Perfect High Priest to intercede for you under a covenant for which He is not a priest? (See Hebrews chapters 7-10)

      Why are you insisting on tracking your sins when God is not?

      (6) “The Holy Spirit is perfectly capable of sanctifying the believer apart from observing Mosaic Covenant Law.”
      You wrote, “We are justified through faith, we live in covenant fidelity throughout all our generations.”

      —> Um, no you don’t. Not even close. At best, you’re a white washed tomb, ‘keeping’ a very watered-down version of the Law. And as stated above, your covenant relationship with God in the New Covenant is not dependent on your performance of the Old Covenant (and it’s a good thing, too!), but on the performance of Christ’s perfect work of the Cross, the Resurrection, the Ascension, and His Perfect, Permanent High Priesthood on our behalf in the New Covenant. We don’t enter into the New Covenant by faith and then stay in covenant with God by performing the edicts of the Old. The Letter to the Hebrews is completely clear on this issue.

      (7) “Law is not law unless it is enforced.”
      You wrote, “Granted, picking the blessings while rejecting the curses is wrong. However, in traditional Judaic understanding, we know there are things we can do as well as things we cannot. There are laws that are only applicable in the land of Israel; while there are many that will only be applicable if and when the Lord returns the Temple to us. The streams of messianic Judaism that I am familiar with are trying to sort these out after 15 to 18 thousand years of the ‘church’ telling us that we are no longer Jews but now Gentile Christians. Sad that in the first ‘church council’ James did not want to trouble the Gentile believers that were coming to faith, but since at least the 2nd Council of Nicaea, the church has been ‘troubling’ Jews who were coming to the faith.”

      —> If picking the blessings and rejecting the curses is wrong, then why are you doing it? Is that the ‘church’s’ fault too? If the ‘church’ has been wrong about stuff (and they have), then fine; reject the things they were wrong about. Don’t use it as an excuse for making a white-washed tomb of yourself. God has better for all of us – we are righteous and holy in Christ Jesus! He wants us to be unified in Christ no matter who we are or what our backgrounds are.

      You want to know why the Law is not/cannot be kept/enforced today? Because GOD ordained it. The Old Covenant, a comprehensive, complete and perfect system, is obsolete. It’s Temple was defunct at the Crucifixion when the curtain was torn from top to bottom by God Himself. The Levites sewed that huge, 10-inch curtain back up, denying the work of the Cross. God allowed a more clear message to be sent with the utter and absolute destruction of the Temple in AD 70. It was no longer needed; Christ and His Body are now the dwelling place for God. God dealt with all sin at the Cross; those who believe on the One He sent do the work of God (John 6:28-29, 1 John 3:23-24) are in Covenant with God after the Cross – they enter into that New Covenant though Christ by faith. The Old Covenant, though it was good and holy, is an obsolete, unworkable, useless, system because no one could keep it (Heb. 7:18-19, 8:13). That was its job: To show us that we were hopelessly sinful outside of the Grace of God.

      (8) “The fruit… is not good.”
      You wrote, “Your opinion, to which you are entitled. I cannot speak to the Hebrew Roots, but the MJ communities I am familiar with speak differently. No question there are problems, I assume the Christian denominations and sects have a problem or two as well.”

      —> There is sin in the Law camps; sin in the Grace camps. No question about it; we are flawed human beings being ever sanctified by the renewing of our minds, while being counted as completely righteous and holy in Christ (Rom. 5, 10, 2 Cor. 5, Heb. 10).

      The question is, what produces holy living? Law or Grace? What do the Scriptures have to say about each? I will refer you to another post which explores these questions in depth: Grace or Law? How Then, Shall We Live?

      I contend, from life experience and observation as well as from research, that there is more sinning going on in the Law camp and in the Church where Grace is mixed with Law. An excellent resource that delves into this issue in many articles is Escape to Reality. Check it out =o).

      (9) “Torah is not our access to God…”
      You wrote, “You are repeating yourself so I will as well. We are all, Jew and non-Jew, justified by faith in messiah alone, not by works of the law. The Torah was given to set a people apart, throughout all their generations. The prophet Jeremiah stated that so long as day and night remained so long as the fixed order of the universe remained; so would the Jewish people (31:35-37).”

      —> Are you now saying that the Jewish people are Torah? It doesn’t say that Torah would remain, but the people. You’re forcing a meaning into the text that is not there.

      You are correct that Torah sets people apart – by isolating them. This was in large part to protect the bloodline so that Messiah would be recognized when He came. Dietary and marriage laws were a huge part of this: dietary laws to keep Israel separate from the other nations and marriage laws to keep the Tribes separate within Israel (which was for the fulfilling of prophecy as well as to establish Christ as the Priest of the New Covenant as He is of the Tribe of Judah, not of the Tribe of Levi).

      In Christ, however, being set apart is not an issue of the flesh, it is an issue of the Spirit. How did Christ say that the world would recognize those who followed Him? By their Torah observance? Or by their love . . .

      (10) “The hermeneutic used by doctrines is fluid.”
      You wrote, “And your’s is not? Please. Every teacher chooses his hermeneutical methodology to prove his or her point while defending against the supposed heresy of the other.”

      —> No, mine is not fluid. Please bring evidence and not a ‘begging the question’ fallacy. If what you say is true, then no one can arrive at Truth, including those who hold to Torah observance, and we’re all sunk.

      (11) “Those in Law-keeping sects seek to make the simple complicated.”
      You wrote, “It could be said that the Law-free sects cheapen the grace of the Lord. There are rules and standards that govern even the body of Messiah. A Pharisee (I know, he wasn’t a ‘believer’) asked Yeshua about the greatest commandment. Yeshua responded with two from the Torah, Deuteronomy 6:4-5 and Leviticus 19:18. Much of the rest of the Torah is commentary on these two passages, teaching us how to fulfill these two specifics of Yeshua’s response. I assume that before going out to play baseball, football, or even cricket, one would either attempt to learn the rules or find someone that already had and try to follow. Law-free folks, I guess just go out and putter around, hoping for the best.”

      —> Again, you’re treating the Law as if it, as it was written, had no penalties when it was violated. We are not talking about a sports game with rules where you get benched or the other team has opportunities to score extra points for your error or you lose (or gain) a trophy.

      We’re talking about the wages of sin is death. That’s God’s Law. His Perfect Standard of Righteousness. You’re taking a New Covenant concept, that of consequences in this life, and trying to walk in the New Covenant using Old Covenant Laws, which had specific penalties for specific sins, many of which were death. You are dissecting the Law, discarding the parts which you don’t want to deal with. The Law is very clear: Complete obedience (100% obedience, 100% of the time per Exodus 23:13, Deuteronomy 5:28-33, Deuteronomy 8:1, Deuteronomy 12:27-28, Jeremiah 7:21-26, Joshua 1:6-9, Galatians 3:10-14, and James 2:8-11) is required to garner the blessings promised in the Law (which are all fleshly blessings), and if you don’t obey 100%, 100% of the time, curses are coming. MJ/HRM theology teaches that partial obedience garners blessings – that God is okay with ‘our best effort’. There is zero Scriptural support for that assertion.

      That’s cheapening the Law!

      You guys are teaching ‘greasy Law’!

      The Law does show us what love looks like; it also shows us where we fall short, like a mirror, but neither helps nor compels us to keep it as the Scriptures exhaustively demonstrate, documenting Israel’s behavior under the Law. The Law cannot produce love in us, which goes beyond the requirements of the Law and moves us to sacrificial acts of love which don’t appear in the Old Covenant.

      As for ‘Law free sects’ cheapening Grace, no. They are for the proper use of the Law in the New Covenant, which elevates and magnifies the Grace of God:

      8 We know that the law is good if one uses it properly. 9 We also know that the law is made not for the righteous but for lawbreakers and rebels, the ungodly and sinful, the unholy and irreligious, for those who kill their fathers or mothers, for murderers, 10 for the sexually immoral, for those practicing homosexuality, for slave traders and liars and perjurers—and for whatever else is contrary to the sound doctrine 11 that conforms to the gospel concerning the glory of the blessed God, which he entrusted to me. (from 1 Tim. 1)

      Another rhetorical question: Who do the New Covenant Scriptures say you are in Christ, and are you on the list above for whom the Law was given? (Answer: Righteous and Holy in Christ.) How is that possible? By the Amazing Grace of God – our position in Christ is an unmerited, unearned, unable-to be-maintained-by-us-in-any-way position because of God’s super-abundance of Grace. Recognizing that is not cheapening Grace, but recognizing how lost we are without God’s Grace.

      Are there exhortations in the New Covenant? Yes. Are they commandments that have penalties doled out by governing authorities in the Body? No. They fall in the category of “Don’t do this. It’s stupid and will screw up your life and possibly harm those around you.” Are there natural consequences for sinning in the Body of Christ? You bet. And Grace teaches us to say no to ungodliness and gives us the freedom to learn from our mistakes. Every human teacher knows that some folks just take longer than others to learn certain lessons. And God knows that too. Who do you suppose is the better, more patient teacher? How patient was God using the Law to with sinners in the Old Covenant?

      As for the ‘cheapening’ of Grace, I see it in a completely different light than you do: I see Grace teachers holding the Law up as it was given by God, held up as the schoolmaster that leads us to the realization of our complete inability to measure up to God’s standard and show us our absolute need for the Grace and Mercy freely given in Christ. I see the teachers of the Torah-pursuant movements watering the Law down to a ‘keepable’ set of instructions, deceiving people that after they enter into covenant with God through Christ, it’s their job to stay in covenant with Him through the Law. That is error, and results in the stirring up of sin rather than the reduction of it (see Rom. 5 and 7 and the history of Israel). The teachings we see in Torah-pursuant sects not only cheapen the Law, but also reduce the need for Grace for only the times when we ‘fall short’. That cheapens Grace and all that was accomplished with the Work of Christ!

      (12) “Law ‘keepers’ cannot deal with contextual writings written to the Body of Christ, or their theology falls apart.”
      You wrote, “Interestingly enough, the same claim is made from my side of the fence.
      I believe it would be safe to say that those who claim to be “Law-free” also are a lot like Forest Gump’s understanding, ‘They too are like a box of chocolates – ya never know what you’re gonna get!’”

      I’ve demonstrated where you have not used New Covenant Scriptures contextually. Over time, I’ve become very familiar with the variety in that box of chocolates and can recognize where the nuts and fruits are. I’m of course speaking of doctrines, not people . . . mostly, ha!

      Grace and peace to you, Michael! Thanks for a good stream of comments =o).

    • Hello Michael,
      You wrote, “I believe it would be safe to say that those who claim to be “Law-free” also are a lot like Forest Gump’s understanding, “They too are like a box of chocolates – ya never know what you’re gonna get!””

      Very astute observation, Michael. But do you see that as a bad thing? In one way it may be bad. There is definitely some doubt that over 36,000 denominations of Christianity can be a good thing.
      But Jesus explained to Nicodemus exactly why it is a good thing to never know what you are going to get. Please read the first 8 verses of John 3 in several translations. Especially look at John 3:8.
      Then notice in Acts 8:26,29,39-40 that Philip was guided by the Holy Spirit in exactly the way Jesus spoke of. Philip was pastor of a large, rapidly growing church. Such a pastor today would not be likely to leave “his” church and go out into the desert.
      Likewise, in Acts 9:10-12 the Holy Spirit guided Ananias to do something he would never have considered, and didn’t want to do.
      It is the same for any Law-free Christian today. If we have truly surrendered our will to do the will of God, then the Holy Spirit will guide us to do things we could not even think of on our own. We definitely cannot predict what we are going to do, as we could if we were following any Law.
      Love in Christ,
      Herb

  28. So I guess since the Law is dead then we can eat pork rinds while having an orgy on the day of tge common of The Lord and we are first in line to sage his throne????? Hmm with no law wichvus actually teaching and instructions there is only chaos and traditions of men which is arrogance abd deception do not hold onto the lie you have been served for long or you will find yourself in the dark……… Forever

    • No, the Law isn’t dead, we who are in Christ have died to the Law:

      4 Likewise, my brothers, you also have died to the law through the body of Christ, so that you may belong to another, to him who has been raised from the dead, in order that we may bear fruit for God. 5 For while we were living in the flesh, our sinful passions, aroused by the law, were at work in our members to bear fruit for death. 6 But now we are released from the law, having died to that which held us captive, so that we serve in the new way of the Spirit and not in the old way of the written code. (from Rom. 7)

      Tell me, do you have the desire to do the sinful things you listed in your comment? Is it the Law which restrains you from doing such things, or Christ in you that restrains you from doing such things?

      I tire of these types of comments – ‘repent or you’ll be sorry’, ‘keep the Law or you’ll find yourself in the dark . . . forever’, ‘you blind bat may YHWH have mercy on your soul’ type stuff. Guys. I’m in Christ. My faith and trust is in Him. He has gifted to me His Forgiveness, Righteousness, and New Life. I’m sealed with His Holy Spirit unto the day of redemption. He has promised to never leave me or forsake me.

      There is no fear in the Gospel.

      That kind of rhetoric does not phase me one tiny little bit.

      23 And this is his commandment, that we believe in the name of his Son Jesus Christ and love one another, just as he has commanded us. 24 Whoever keeps his commandments abides in God, and God in him. And by this we know that he abides in us, by the Spirit whom he has given us. (from 1 Jn 3)

      How do I know this? “By the Spirit whom he has given us [me].”

      I rest assured in my position before a Holy God because of Christ’s Perfect Work. My position before God does not rely on my performance of the Law, but on Christ’s Work of the Cross, the Resurrection, the Ascension, and His position as my Perfect, Forever High Priest.

      That is a restful place to be. I abide in Him, and He produces the Fruit. Love. I bear it. Rest. And love is a much better motivator than either Law or fear to do the right thing. \o/

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