Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Questions From Non-Believers: Why Don't Christians Follow the Mosaic Law?

Nathan JonesWatch MP3 PDFBy

How can a Christian support the death penalty at the same time be opposed to abortion?

Dr. David Reagan and I on our ministry's television show Christ in Prophecy had the pleasure of asking this question of Eric Barger of Take a Stand! Ministries. Eric is an authority on the cults, the New Age, and rock music today. From his past as a former drug addict and rock n' roll musician who was deeply involved in the New Age movement, Eric has emerged since he gave his life to Jesus Christ to become a great defender of Christianity in America. He joined us to answer the most frequently asked questions by non-Christians about the Bible and Christianity.


Eric Barger

Dr. Reagan: Let's look at some of the statements that we run across all the time and get your reactions on these. People are always writing in and saying, "How can a Christian support the death penalty at the same time be opposed to abortion?"

Eric Barger: Well, we stand for innocent life. In the case of the death penalty, this is a completely different deal, though. Capital punishment is not about innocent life. In the case of a baby, this is innocent life which we stand up for. So, the argument is a moot point, and one that the Atheist and Agnostic love to throw at us.

Nathan Jones: Yes, it's nothing but legal jargon.

Eric Barger: They are two different and unrelated topics.

Dr. Reagan: It's interesting too from a Christian viewpoint that the death penalty was commanded by God in the covenant He made with Noah, which is an everlasting covenant. That covenant is still in effect today. God said if anyone takes a life, there a life is to be taken (Lev. 24:17). This is a command that originates from the Bible. But, people will say the law was overridden by the New Testament, because the New Testament is all about love. It didn't override the covenant with Noah either, for that covenant is still in effect.

You both are right. Concerning abortion, one is talking about a completely innocent life. The other one is about judgment on the guilty.


How could Christianity condemn homosexuality, yet at the same time eat shrimp?

Dr. Reagan: Can you believe people bring these types of crazy questions up all the time?

Nathan Jones: Oh, Atheist love that one, because they can work up to saying, "You should then be putting to death your children according to Mosaic Law if they transgress this or that." So, they'll accuse, "Why are you eating shrimp, or mixing your threads?"

The answer is simple — we don't live under the Mosaic Law anymore. In fact the Mosaic Law was given only to the Jews. A lot of the 613 Levitical laws were given because the Jews were traveling from slavery in Egypt through the desert in very hostile situations. As slaves for generations, they didn't know how to live out in the Sinai desert. They needed to learn cleanliness. They needed to learn when to drink certain waters and eat certain foods so they won't get sick and die. Those dietary laws applied to them. But, when Jesus came, the Old Testament law was replaced by, "Love the Lord your God, and love your neighbor." We live by that grace today.

Eric Barger: Yes, that is exactly right. It's a matter of looking at the Old Testament and understanding the reasons for what was happening there and who these laws were written for, and then looking at the New Testament and seeing the grace and mercy of God fulfilling those laws.

Nathan Jones: Grace also covers the question about people asking if they should be worshipping only on Saturday or if they should reject celebrating Christmas and Easter. Under God's grace, we no longer have to worship on one particular day. Instead, we're to worship God every moment of every day. So, we fulfill the Law, but we are free from the bondage of that law. We can worship God on Christmas and Easter. We don't have to worship on the Jewish holidays, because God gives us that freedom of worship.

Eric Barger: I say if it is Tuesday morning or Thursday night or Saturday, any of those days are fine. Whatever day you pick is okay, but don't you Judaizers tell us that we have to worship on a specific day for us to be saved. That's the bottom line of their argument — it becomes all about my work for my salvation. Really, it's not about what I've done, but instead what Jesus did for me. My works cannot save me.

Nathan Jones: Well, they need to get the day right even. The Sabbath is not Saturday, but from Friday sunset to Saturday sunset if they really want to get legalistic.

Dr. Reagan: I get letters of condemnation all the time primarily from Seven Day Adventists who tell me I am going straight to Hell because I don't worship on Saturday. My response to them is always the same. Go read chapter 14 of Romans. Just read the chapter. Romans teaches that we have freedom in Christ. Really, Romans 14 says this point blank that believers in Christ can give spiritual significance to any day we please and not to judge one another for that choice. So, if I want to give spiritual significance to Christmas, well that's my business. If you don't want to, that's your business. And yet, I don't have any right to condemn you either, and you don't have any right to condemn me.

Eric Barger: That's right. Celebratory days are not a heaven and hell issue according to Romans 14. Paul elsewhere says that all those old celebrations have been done away with. He makes that very clear. By the way, I have actually read that chapter in a Seven Day Adventist Church where I was preaching one time, many, many years ago. They didn't invite me back, of course, but they kind of looked at me funny and shook their heads having to admit it's actually in the Scriptures.


Why do bad things happen to good people?

Eric Barger: We live behind enemy lines. We live in a fallen creation. Therefore, bad stuff is going to happen to good people. Conversely, good stuff is going to happen to bad people. People say that's not fair. Why isn't God doing anything about all the suffering? Have we forgotten that we still have Satan loose on the earth? He's the key right there.

Dr. Reagan: In fact, we are pretty well guaranteed in Scripture if we really give our heart to the Lord Jesus Christ we will be persecuted. Life here is not going to be a bed of roses. Because of our faith in Christ, there's going to be trials. There's going to be tribulations. There's going to be persecution.

Nathan Jones: We have to keep the big picture in mind. This lifespan of ours is 100 years or less. All of human history is 6,000 years plus another 1,000 for the Millennial Kingdom. Beyond, we have an eternity with God in perfection. So, yes, life's rough at this time certainly. After all, they killed Jesus, so it was rough even for Jesus being here in this fallen world. We have an eternity to look forward to where we do not have to suffer. Let's keep our eyes on that prize.

Eric Barger: If someone thinks coming to Christ will make everything in their lives be like a bed of roses and all the time 72 degrees and it's just going to be wonderful and everything will be great, it's not the way of the world that we live in. Sadly, in too many churches we hear that kind of story being taught, claiming that if you just come to Christ today, He has a great plan for your life. He does indeed, but realize that you still might go through lots of trials in life that will mold you into becoming more Christ-like. I can guarantee you as the older I get the more I know that we're going to see all kinds of disconcerting events in our lives. We are going to lose loved ones and suffer setbacks. But, through Christ I know I can handle anything that comes my way if I've got Jesus, and that is the key difference in being a Christian or not.

Dr. Reagan: It's called living by faith.

Eric Barger: That's right. It's not all about what Jesus is going to do for you and the great plan He has for your life. No, it's about my faith and my trust that I put in Him so that I know my eternity has been settled.

Nathan Jones: You reminded me of when I was a decision counselor and we had a guy come down who wanted to be saved. He was blind. He told me that he only wanted to get saved if God could cure him of his sight. Taken aback, I replied, "Well, I can't heal you of your vision, but I can pray that the Lord will." I explained that salvation isn't about the physical. It is about rescue from eternal death and the spiritual walk we'll have with Jesus and all the benefits of that relationship. He just stood up with his cane and walked away. He wouldn't have God unless He healed his sight. I never learned if God ever did heal him. But, to think physical healing was a stumbling block to the salvation of his soul. And, for a lot of people, the suffering in their lives becomes the stumbling block, or they use it purposefully to stumble their faith and be mad at God as an excuse not to accept Jesus.

Eric Barger: Way too many preachers today preach that when you come to Christ everything is going to be fine in your life. We have lied to somebody when we say that. A worry-free life can never be the reason for somebody to come to Christ. Salvation's focus is instead on eternity.

13 comments:

amc said...

Guys, this is a topic that needs to be dealt with at length. Do not underestimate the inroads that several "Messianic" organizations are making in the church. There's a growing movement that seeks to yoke Christians to Mosaic Law. Mark Biltz is one of the Trojan horses here!

amc

Nathan Jones said...

So true, AMC. This growing movement within Messianic Judaism to return to the Law is unfortunate. They're even sucking in non-Jewish Christians into this thinking. David Brickner of Jews For Jesus has been fighting this trend, but instead many of the Messianic congregations have severed ties to his organization.

On a weekly basis, and especially around the holidays, I've been inundated with people who say we should be worshipping on Saturday, celebrating the Jewish feasts, not celebrating Christmas and Easter, and claiming we need to be following the precepts of the Mosaic Law again. They've jettisoned their grace. When showing them chapters like Galatians 2, they then claim that the teachings of the Apostles are moot, so to support their modern form of Judaizing they reject the Bible!

While their quest for godliness is to be commended, their return to slavery under the law is truly sad.

Susie said...

I researched mark biltz online this morning.... i must say... he comes off initially as being ok. His faith statement seems ok... but when i read further into his teachings, it wasnt long before i couls see the burring of the church and israel. Its a shame that people who r zealous to love and follow the Lord take his most wonderful gift... grace.. and mix it back in with the law.
We need to remain leary of those mixing new wine into old wineskins. Doesnt work!!

Billy said...

Glad to know about Jews for Jesus as I support this group (and now can continue to do so). Thanks.

amc said...

Biltz got a lot of promo via his blood moon theory which many have been talking about. He's also closely connected to the popular 119 Ministries who have a number of pro-"Torah" teachings. Others to worry about are Monte Judah and Dewey Brunton - also pro-Torah. I've come across another guy on Amazon discussions who us doing a prolific amount of proselytizing for Mosaic Law observance. As Nathan said - "they've jettisoned their grace" and influencing others to do so as well.

Susie said...

Nathan .. or whoever else may know:):).....
Where is it stated in scripture about the 7yr "peace" agreement that the a/c will propose?
I cant find it...

... in my humble opion... i think a good number of messiac jews appropriate the prophecies of the end time that involve the church age saints with the jewish feasts. I think the tribulation judgements are in line with the feasts.. yes... but not the church!

Anonymous said...

Susie, It is in Daniel 9:27

Dan 9:27 And he shall confirm the covenant with many for one week: and in the midst of the week he shall cause the sacrifice and the oblation to cease, and for the overspreading of abominations he shall make [it] desolate, even until the consummation, and that determined shall be poured upon the desolate.

Anonymous said...

Susie, this is a good site that is explaining what they think Daniel is saying...

http://prophecysigns.com/prophecy-sign-7/

I need to take my doggie to vet.. will check back later. Hope these help you..

Susie said...

Anon! Thank u soooo much :):):) i will check out those links

Susie said...

Anon... cool website. Thanks :)

Anonymous said...

Anons website teaches the church WILL GO THROUGH THE TRIBULATION.
So if you want to be utterly confused this will do it for all the Pretribbers.

amc said...

Yeah, I did notice that. It also references the ENP1 which is a dead horse.

amc

Susie said...

Anon... seriously... i didnt notice that or i would have probably said something. Thanks u guys.
Anon... this is just mho... we r pre tribulation rapture believers!!! For a ton of reasons.
Dr reagan wrote an excellent book called Gods plan for the ages .. it really helped me understand alot.