20 October 2010 (Rishon/Shavuot)|
Day #218, 5934 AM
What's Been Abolished?
Understanding the New Covenant Law
The Law of Elohim (God) is so sacred and so necessary to mankind's well-being that again and again Scripture warns man not to add or subtract anything from it at the pain of being erased from the Book of Life and excluded from the Holy City (Dt.4:2; Rev.22:18-19) - only the Law-Giver Himself can change anything. This being indisputably so, great care should be taken before we say what is, and what is not, applicable to the New Covenant of Messiah Yah'shua (Christ Jesus).
What I have to share today has nothing whatsoever to do with salvation. Salvation is the act of initial and continuing trusting in Yah'shua the Messiah (Jesus Christ) as the Redeemer of the world and the atoner of man's sins who confers the resurrection life upon those whom He saves. The Law or Torah has nothing to do with the initial salvation of a sinner but it has everything to do with remaining in that salvation because the Law exists to point man to the lifestyle of the saved so that man does not sin against a holy Elohim any more. It's what saved people do. It's what identifies saved people individually and as a community.
The Bible tells us that five things have been abolished from the Old Covenant Torah as a result of the death and resurrection of Yah'shua the Messiah (Jesus Christ) and that all the rest remains and is binding on believers. These four are:
Yahweh's Holy Days are part of His Seal upon us (Ex.13:7,9; Rev.7:3). If one Holy Day (the Feast of Unleavened Bread) is a part of the seal then all of them are. Not only are we told that the Seventh-day Sabbath indisputably is but all eight sabbaths:
- 1. The Sacrificial System and the Oblations. 'Oblations' are offerings which were wine and grain offered along with the animal sacrifices (Num.28). How do we know that these two have been abolished?
"And after the sixty-two weeks Messiah shall be cut off, but not for Himself; and the people of the prince who is to come shall destroy the city and the sanctuary. The end of it shall be with a flood, and till the end of the war desolations are determined. Then he shall confirm a covenant with many for one week; But in the middle of the week He shall bring an end to sacrifice and offering" (Dan.9:26-27, NKJV);
- 2. The Civil Penalties for Violation of the Law. Because Israel rejected King Yah'shua (Jesus), Yahweh first brought the theocracy to a complete end through the Roman Empire (which occupied the Holy land), then destroyed the Temple (to make sure it was completely understood that animal sacrifices and offerings were at a permanent end), and then scattered the remaining tribes of Judah and Benjamin into the world where they have remained today. (Note: The modern Republic of Israel is not Israel restored - see Jacob's Trouble). This means that New Covenant Israel, scattered as she still remains today throughout the nations, comes under the civil law of those nations until Yah'shua returns and gathers all 12 Tribes back to the Promised Land, establishing the New Covenant Theocracy in the Holy land and throughout the world. (Note: If civil law contradicts Yahweh's Law, we, as believers, are to obey Yahweh's Law first - Ac.5:29). Until then, we are to render unto Caesar what is Caesar's (Jn.8:3-11; Mt.22:21; Ac.5:29). However, this does not mean we should cease obeying Yahweh's Civil Law because at the Second Coming He will punish the wicked according to that civil law. We learn from from the Seventh Plague that this will include executing Sabbath-breakers and those who refuse to obey His Holy Days or Festivals (Rev.16:21);
- 3. The Levitical (Aaronic) Priesthood. According to the New Testament we are now under the Melchizedek Priesthood (see Book of Hebrews) and are all kings and priests in the making (Rev.1:6);
- 4. Circumcision. See Acts 15 and related articles on this subject;
- 5. The Old Covenant Temple Services. When the curtain separating the Holy of Holies from the Holy Place was rent at the death of Yah'shua (Jesus) on the cross, Yahweh demonstrated that the Old Covenant temple services were at an end (Mt.27:51). Now everyone has access to the Holy of Holies through the Eternal Mediator, Yah'shua the Messiah, whereas previously only the Cohen Gadol or High Priest could represent Israel once a year at Yom Kippur. However, the temple services do not include Yahweh's special rest days like the Seventh-day Sabbath and the Annual and Monthly Moedim. We know this because both Yah'shua and Paul kept the sabbath and the feasts and invited others to do the same.
"And I gave them My statutes and showed them My judgments, 'which, if a man does, he shall live by them.' Moreover I also gave them My Sabbaths, to be a sign between them and Me, that they might know that I am Yahweh who sanctifies them...hallow My Sabbaths, and they will be a sign between Me and you, that you may know that I am Yahweh your Elohim" (Ezek.20:11-12,20).
Ever since I made the decision to be obedient to Yahweh's Law according to Scripture, lawless (antinomian) believers have been trying to get me to renounce Yahweh's seal. What do they offer in place of Yahweh's moedim or appointments with him? Pagan observances, condemned in Scripture, such as Christmas, Easter, Halloween, the Pagan New Year and all manner of abominations that Yahweh has said will cost me my seal! Like evangelicals I believe in the same salvation of Christ but unlike them I believe in continuing in it, according to divine tavnith or pattern, because I take Yahweh's commandments seriously. I want His lifestyle, not the world's.
"Bind up the testimony, seal the Torah (law) among my talmidim (disciples)" (Isa.8:16, NKJV).
I am bound by all the Torah except the five areas of the Old Covenant that Yah'shua abolished on the Cross and I take the commandment not to add or subtract from it very seriously. Do you? The lifestytle of the redeemed is not a burden but shere joy! Find out for yourself.