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To Scholar: Old and new testament

Reader comment on item: Islamophobia?

Submitted by Lisa (Canada), Nov 30, 2005 at 20:05

Dear Scholar

John is right, I will make my replies brief, I hope the following will help you understand why Christians don't follow the old laws that came before Jesus, and what is Jesus interpretation of the old law:

Jesus fulfilled the old testament and the predictions of prophets preceeding him since prophet Abraham, he provided divine interpretations to the ten commandments and to the old testament laws. Example, it says "do not kill" i.e. do not physically kill anyone in old testament, Jesus said "whoever gossip about his fellow human is equal to physically killing that person".

In Matthew 5:17-18 Jesus said
17 "Do not think that I came to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I did not come to abolish but to fulfill. 18 "For truly I say to you, until heaven and earth pass away, not the smallest letter or stroke shall pass from the Law until all is accomplished.

The key word in this verse is "until ALL is Accomplished" mentioned at the end of the verse
fulfilling means that Jesus carried out hundreds of prophets' predictions concerning himself and the kingdom of God. He fulfilled these predictions in his birth, life, death and resurrection, he fulfilled what ever referenced to himself and to the church. This was the purpose for coming to the world. Some of the prophecies of the Old Testament concerned Jesus personally. Some of them concerned his work in the church and salvation of souls in the church and in heaven. In the book of Hebrews we are told that Jesus came to establish a new and better Covenant because he found fault with the Old Covenant (Hebrews 8:7,8). The Old Covenant, the law, was intended for the purpose for which it was given, but it was only a temporal law and consequently was not adequate for a universal and a spiritual law. Jesus is drawing a contrast between the law of Moses and the law of the kingdom (the New Testament or New Covenant), showing the superiority of the law of the kingdom, the New Covenant, over the law of Moses, the Old Covenant.

Six times (in Matt. 5) Jesus says "You have heard that it was said," meaning by the old law that certain things were true, "but I say to you." He then contrasts his teachings with the teachings of the Old Covenant. Each time he points out the inadequacy of the law and shows the superiority of the New Covenant.

Christians are to allow the superiority of the New Covenant (the New Testament) to govern thier lives. The Old Covenant (Old Testament) is not binding on people after Christ.
God promised long ago through the prophet Jeremiah 700 years before Christ that a New Covenant was coming. Read Jeremiah 31:31 and following, and then Read Hebrews 8:8-13 where the Hebrew writer quotes from Jeremiah and tells us that the new covenat is the New Testament

Galatians 3:23-25
23 But before faith came, we were kept in custody under the law, being shut up to the faith which was later to be revealed. 24 Therefore the Law has become our tutor to lead us to Christ, so that we may be justified by faith. 25 But now that faith has come, we are no longer under a tutor.
The term "faith" in verse 23 is a reference to the New Testament (Jude 3). The law of Moses was intended by God to "teach" us (tutor, verse 24) about Christ. It was never intended to be used as a spiritual law by which men were to be governed for all time. Verse 25 clearly says (as does the entire book of Hebrews) that we are no longer under the old law (tutor).
Therefore, we read the Old Testament to learn how God sees sin, and how he deals with it (1 Cor. 10:1-13), but we are not to use it as a law to govern or guide us after Christ.

God bless

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