Presentation on theme: "Life Together - Fall 2008 Crosspoint, Lynnwood Dusting Off The Good Book: A Class in Bible Interpretation by Barry McWilliams Part 10 Principles for Living:"— Presentation transcript:
Life Together - Fall 2008 Crosspoint, Lynnwood Dusting Off The Good Book: A Class in Bible Interpretation by Barry McWilliams Part 10 Principles for Living: Law in Scripture
Law in Scripture The Books of The Pentateuch Genesis The Patriarchs Exodus God Redeems His People from Eygpt Leviticus Ceremonial and religious laws Numbers rebellious generation wanders Deuteronomy Reaffirming the Covenant before entering the land
The TORAH “Teaching” is the five books of moses The Old Testament Laws are firmly embedded in the story of Israel and should be interpreted as and within narrative contexts. Historical background of God’s Covenant with abraham The Exodus from Bondage in Eygpt Sinai: The Law and the Golden Calf The Wilderness Wanderings Preparations for a new generation to enter the Promised Land Even Leviticus is given in the form of a dialogue between God and Moses
Israel’s Law “Covenants” The Decalogue (Exodus 20:1-17; Deut 5:6-21) The Book of the Covenant (Exodus 20:22-23:33) The Law of Holiness (Leviticus 18-20) The Law of Deuteronomy (Deuteronomy 12:1-25:16) “ Now if you obey me fully and keep my covenant, then out of all nations you will be my treasured possession.” Exo. 19:5
Israel’s “Covenants” with the lord The Decalogue The Book of the Covenant Law of Holiness The Law of Deuteronomy These Laws were founded on: The Holy Character of God “I am the LORD, your God” & His Redemptive deliverance of His People: “ Who delivered you from Eygpt”
OLD TESTAMENT LAW There are basically three kinds of laws in the OT: Moral law - declares what God requires of man Ceremonial law - portrays the salvation to come in Christ Civil law - ordered the nation of Israel and restrained sin
The Ten Commandments I (being) the LORD your God [I–III] Right relations to God Remember(ing) the Sabbath [IV] Right relations to Work Honor(ing) your parents [V-X] Right Relations to Society The Law has a loving spirit that reflects the character, nature and will of God. The moral law is “double-sided”: That forbidden requires its contrary duties and visa versa. And under any sin or duty, all lesser forms are also included. Merely refraining from a forbidden thing is not a moral action. Rejecting virtue is to choose vice Though stated in the negative – these are positive commands? The negative can be stated in fewer words, and meets the strong current of evil in the human heart. Our freedom in grace is so large that it would be difficult to state all the positives so simply.
The Moral Law Faith and loyalty Worship Reverence Holiness, or consecration Obedience, or respect for authority Love Purity Honesty Truthfulness Contentment and unselfishness have no other gods before me not make for yourself idols not take the Lord’s name in vain remember to keep the sabbath holy honor your father and mother not murder not commit adultry not steal not bear false witness not covet …. Thou Shalt ….. Positive Principles Taught : I, being the LORD, your God
THE MORAL LAW The Ten Commandments Hear, O Israel, the Lord our God, The Lord is one, And you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and all your mind and all your strength. You shall love your neighbor as yourself! Luke 12:29-31 The Moral Law has four basic purposes: So not think I have come to abolish the Law and the Prophets, I have not come to abolish them, but to fulfill them. Matt 5:17 It reveals and reflects the holiness of God. It sets forth God’s standard of righteousness for mankind It reveals man's short-fall of the Law and his need of a savior, condemning man for his sin. It serves as means of grace and sanctification for the believer.
Israel’s Unique Civil Law Codes Had a Divinely-given moral base Included both simple absolute laws and “If…” case laws Made no class distinctions - Was humane Allowed for no permanent involuntary servitude Disallowed exploitation of the poor, women, orphans Called for appropriate justice to suit the offense Provided fair compensation to victims Punishment was to fit the crime Made room for both justice and also for mercy Insisted on honesty and responsibility regarding property Preserved personal and property rights Maintained separation between “Holy” and “common” Respected Authority, especially God’s Strengthened National and Spiritual unity
The Laws of O.T. Israel · There is some over-lap between the civil and ceremonial laws · There is not always a sharp distinction between religious and civil duties · The moral law under girds them both. Some OT Laws (Promises) were designed to be means of blessing, rather than being restrictive or punitive. Because Israel was a theocracy:
The Ceremonial Laws related to the religious life of the Hebrew people The Tabernacle and its furnishings The Priesthood and their garments Sacred Times and feasts Offerings and Sacrifices Dietary and Purity Laws These point to Christ and have their fulfillment in Him and His Work
OLD TESTAMENT LAW Old Testament Laws take two basic forms: "APODICTIC” LAWS - “do’s” and “do not’s” – paradigms “CAUSUISTIC" LAWS - conditional applications of principles to specific situations
The OT Laws and the Christian As New Testament Christians, we live by the “spirit”, rather than the “letter” of the OT law. Though the Bible teaches us that the Ceremonial Law has now been fulfilled in Christ, and we live by grace, yet the Old Testament Laws are of value to us. Our task is to find and apply the principles behind the laws to our particular social and cultural needs.
Finding the Value in OT Laws We need to first of all see them in their context within Israel’s story. What does God reveal about Himself? His Concerns? Priorities? Values? What do they reveal about our natures? As sinners? As redeemed people? What principles can we abstract from them and apply to our own lives and our society?
The Instructive and Faith-Building Character of the Law Some Do’s and Don’ts. Do see the Old Testament law as God’s fully inspired word for you. Don’t see the Old Testament law as God’s direct command to you. Do see the Old Testament law as the basis for the Old Covenant, and therefore for Israel’s history. Don’t see the Old Testament law as binding on Christians in the New Covenant except where specifically renewed. Do see God’s justice, love and high standards revealed in the Old Testament law. Don’t forget to see God’s mercy is made equal to the severity of the standards.
The Instructive and Faith-Building Character of the Law Some Do’s and Don’ts. Don’t see the Old Testament law as complete. It is not technically comprehensive. Do see the Old Testament as a paradigm - providing examples for the full range of expected behavior. Don’t expect the Old Testament law to be cited frequently by the prophets or the New Testament. Do remember that the essence of the Law (Ten Commandments and the two chief laws) is repeated in the prophets and renewed in the New Testament. Do see the Old Testament law as a generous gift to ISREAL, bringing much blessing when obeyed. Don’t see the Old Testament law as a grouping of arbitrary, annoying regulations limiting people’s freedom.