This is in response to TJ and Reg from the last discussion where Reg disabled replies. BTW, thank you Reg for not allowing that kind of insulting on this site.

In that discussion, I briefly said that the Mosaic Law was never intended for Christians to follow today. Maybe Reg missed that part, because he then asked a bunch of questions about how to follow the Mosaic Law. TJ responded to me by saying:

Jesus said not to change the old laws one iota.

They therefore specifically still apply.


I assume the verse that TJ was talking about is Matthew 5:17-18, which says, "Think not that I am come to destroy the law, or the prophets: I am not come to destroy, but to fulfill. For verily I say unto you, Till heaven and earth pass, one jot or one tittle shall in no wise pass from the law, till all be fulfilled." 

Just to be clear, fulfill means, "bring to completion or reality; achieve or realize (something desired, promised, or predicted)."

If Jesus came to fulfill the law, then how would it still apply today?

This issue is actually a big theme in the New Testament, especially in Galatians. Here are several verses that support what Christians believe about the Mosaic Law.

knowing that a man is not justified by the works of the law but by faith in Jesus Christ, even we have believed in Christ Jesus, that we might be justified by faith in Christ and not by the works of the law; for by the works of the law no flesh shall be justified. (Galatians 2:16)

Therefore, my brethren, you also have become dead to the law by the body of Christ. (Romans 7:4)

Wherefore the law was our schoolmaster to bring us unto Christ, that we might be justified by faith. But after that faith is come, we are no longer under a schoolmaster. (Galatians 3:24-25)

Jesus came and died for us to give us salvation through him, not through the law. The New Testament has a lot more to say about it, but this is at least a start.

So Reg, to answer each of your questions: you don't. lol

 

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 It does come from Matthew 5:18, which was originally written in Greek. It's also originally translated as "Until heaven and earth pass away, not an iota, not a dot, will pass from the Law."

It was heavily edited afterwards even more so to solve the new vs old conflict.

Think about what the relevance of "until heaven and earth pass away".

That was left, and, probably needed to be edited out too...but they always did the editing in iotas...and seemed to have stranded it.

If its "fulfilled", BY Jesus, when he SAYS IT essentially, why add a phrase that implies the old laws are not changing until heaven and earth pass away?

If fact, why say that the heavens pass away, or that the earth passes away?

The bible, earlier, says they are permanent.

So, no, the Jesus character is saying he is there to enforce the old laws.

There are also passages about taking up the sword and following him even if you have to leave your family, etc.

The lines borrowed for the script seem to come from the rebel fighter...and while heavily edited to try to dilute that, there are a few scenes in the script that did not end up on the cutting room floor.

:)

I think it's interesting that those two words, destroy and fulfill, are compared in verse 17. The results of both words are the same in that something has come to an end. The difference is in how that thing has ended. If Jesus destroyed the law, that would mean he was acting as an opponent of the law and came to stop the law prematurely. Saying that something will never be destroyed does not necessarily mean it will never end, only that it won't end prematurely. Instead, Jesus said that he came to fulfill the law, or bring it to a natural end.  

You left out the last part of the sentence in verse 18 where Jesus said "till all be fulfilled." (One thing worth noting is that Jesus talks about the law being fulfilled twice in adjacent sentences.) Saying not a dot will pass from the law until... strongly implies that it will pass. When combined with the previous verse where Jesus said he came to fulfill the law, I don't see how Christians could still be under the law. 

There's still the question about why Jesus said "until heaven and earth pass away". Personally, I think he was saying something like it doesn't matter what could change, including heaven and earth passing away, but the law won't change till it is fulfilled. Maybe that's not the best answer, but I find it a lot more reasonable than ignoring the part that says "till it is fulfilled".

 

First of all Jeff you are welcome. It sometimes comes to pass that a person starts out with a reasonable argument and then defends it with sweeping statements before descending into ad hominem attacks that are only derogatory in nature. Usually it is commentary from theists that gets moderated :-)

Ok, my questions in that (temporarily) defunct post were a bit tongue in cheek and taken from an old Internet story. I find the Bible – which I have read – to be full of contradictions and not to be a very moral book.

The problem I have Jeff is that this is yet another theological debate about what the Bible says. I see no point in debating the nuances of Biblical scripture until we first establish that your God actually exists. You have presupposed that He does and cannot grasp how we don’t see it as obvious that He does. Again we are not denying anything, we just don’t believe what we hear.

There are people who believe vampires are real. We don’t. There are over a billion people that believe Ganesh is a “real” God. We don’t. There are over a billion that believe Allah is the one true God. We don’t. There are a similar number who believe that Jesus is God. We don’t.

The Bible is based upon a God that I do not believe exists.  I have been asking for a reason to believe what you believe. Why should I believe what you say is true when you have no evidence to support your claim? Once again the Bible is the claim for your Gods’ existence and not the proof of it. Why not ask Hindus why they don’t believe in your God. They are atheists towards Him in exactly the same way I am. Why don’t you ask Muslims who don’t believe Jesus is God? They have verses about it too we could debate:

And in their footsteps we sent Jesus, the son of Mary, confirming the Law that had come before him: We sent him the Gospel: therein was guidance and light, and confirmation of the Law that had come before him: a guidance and an admonition to those who fear Allah. Surah 5:46

Curses were pronounced on those among the Children of Israel who rejected Faith, by the tongue of David and of Jesus the son of Mary: because they disobeyed and persisted in excesses. Surah 5:78

I get asked similar questions by Muslims who also have presupposed the existence of the God. They too want to debate their book with me. I give them exactly the same reply – Why should I believe what you are telling me is the Truth, is indeed true?

Here is one debate with Dr. Bob, who when asked for evidence immediately brings up Physics and thinks that answers it.  I recently asked for help to find God and no-one would tell me how to do so even though I said I would renounce my atheism. I was giving theists the chance for a mass conversion of atheists and not one person would help us find God. Even when I started to get a glimmer of hope it went dark again and all the theists walked away.

Look it, even if you have no objective evidence for any of it can you please at least tell me why I should belief. Then maybe I will be in a position to have a reason for debating scripture.

What are your Top 3 beliefs about God and why do you believe them….without mentioning the Bible.

"There are people who believe vampires are real. We don’t."

What??? Vampires aren't REAL???

Glad to hear it, I can now get rid of all this garlic, damn this place smells like an Italian Brothel. :)

You know how when your dad is teaching you to ride a bike, and when you're learning how to do it, he holds onto the back so you don't fall over, and then one day he lets go and you are suddenly riding the bike on your own - I see it like that. 

One day when I was about 5 I got on my friend's bike for the first time and cycled away on my own.

Same here....I just got on and went....on a friend's bike.

My dad wasn't big on teaching stuff, He taught me to swim by ignoring me when we were at the beach so I got sucked into the undertow and showed up a mile or so away down the beach.  I was 4.

My swimming looked a lot like not drowning.

Bikes were easy at least...no dad involved.

-----

And, yeah, its tiring to have theists quote the bible to try to convince you of its truth.

Its as if they simply don't GET how anyone is not convinced by a book that is its only source of its own validity.

What constitutes a truly compelling argument seems so hard for them to formulate.

I could write a book that says 2+2 = 6...and add that I add in mysterious ways, and that there will be those who call me a fool, but they are the real fools...etc.

That way, anyone who says, hey, wait, 2+2=4 not 6...I can read the passage about THEM being fools...snap.

I can say they are reading it out of context, or that they are looking at it from a scientific standpoint and not a spiritual stand point, as if they TRULY understood, they'd understand how 2+2=6 in a spiritual way.

If they ask how I know 2+2=6, I can say "Because it is written in the Holy Book of Arithmetic that 2+2=6!", Chapter 4, verse 202...and I have faith in the truth of the Holy Book.

And so forth.

Its as if they think they are making a case...but its making them sound more like a nut case.

I suppose Jeff you are probably annoyed or maybe disappointed with the answer I gave earlier. I know you cannot grasp what it is to be an atheist because you “know” your God exists. It is most likely (excuse my assumptions) to be the God you have always believed in. It is the God your family and most of your friends believe in. It is because you really only know of this one God and have always only known of Him that I say you presuppose He exists. You have never really not understood Him not to exist so you cannot see it from our point of view.

Imagine a Sikh posted a question similar to yours and asked us if we agreed that people separated from (their) God by one of the Five Thieves (greed, lust, the ego, anger and attachment to worldly possessions) could only get back on track by dedicating their time to prayer and striving for salvation. He then said the Guru Granth Sahib (their book) is his guidebook for life and that as atheists we needed to understand it better. Some of the older texts like the Dasam Granth were not as important as the later texts and those that disagree are not “real” Sikhs.

Jeff, I would say to him what I say to you. Please show me why I should believe that Ik Onkar actually exists. What evidence has this Sikh got to show me? I am not asking for proof, just a shred of evidence to give some merit to his claim that “God Exists”.

I know you (the Sikh) have grown up only hearing of this God that all your friends and family also believe in. So you are presupposing that He exists and then using your book as evidence for it. I will tell him that this is what Muslims and Christians both say to me about their Gods and their books. I just don’t believe this Sikh. I do not believe his God exists.

So I think it is a futile exercise to debate the meaning of its texts when they are based upon something that does not exist as far as I am concerned. I completely respect his right to believe what he believes and in a secular society I will be the first to stand beside him to fight for his right to be allowed to freely participate in the rites and rituals of it…….just so long as they don’t encroach upon my right not to have to hear about it…..in my schools….on my currency….in my polling booth….in front of the courthouse…….

The thing is Jeff you probably agree with me here!! We are most likely thinking along the same lines. You do not believe in his God. You do not even think (again I assume so) that his God even exists. Not because you believe in your God but because you know next to nothing of his religion and have no reason to believe in his God. What would it take for this Sikh to get you to believe in his God?

If you can answer that question then you will start to understand me. I do not believe in your God for the same reason you do not believe in the existence of Ik Onkar. We are both atheists when it come to the God of Sikhism.

Jeff, if you were born in the Punjab you would probably be an atheist towards the Christian God and for exactly the same reasons you are currently an Atheist towards the Sikh God. It is just that I am also an atheist when it comes to your God and again for the same reasons you are towards Il Onkar.

By accident of birth or geography you are a Christian. You have grown up with it and cannot comprehend what it is like not to believe in the God you have come to believe in.

I am rambling a bit and maybe getting somewhat repetitive because I am typing quickly but I think I have made my point well enough for you to understand where we are coming from when we ask you for evidence for your beliefs. To us they are extraordinary claims. To claim you can communicate with the Creator of the Universe and that He can know your mind is something I just am unable to accept. To claim that because you believe your God is real and therefore you will become immortal is….just not believable. So you have to explain, you must explain, why what you are claiming is true or we are forced to dismiss it. If you cannot justify to us why we should believe you then we cannot debate the merits of the book you use for exactly the same reasons you would give the Sikh. It is unbelievable!! It is not credible!! I cannot bring myself to believe your God is real any more that you can believe the Sikh God is real.

Once again, if you want to glimpse what is to be an atheist, try to understand why you don’t believe in the existence of Il Onkar and ask yourself what would it take for a Sikh to convince you otherwise apart from reading his book?

What evidence has this Sikh got to show me?

Sikh and ye shall find.

First laugh of the day duly initiated!

You are right that I grew up in a Christian home and have gone to church my whole life. I also haven't had a lot of interaction with people of different beliefs because I am 19 years old and went to a private school. Because of my young age and having grown up Christian, you are probably more accurate than you thought when you said I have presupposed the existence of God. Having grown up in the Christian belief, of course I have taken the belief for granted for most of my life. 

There is a verse in the Bible that says, "...and be ready always to give an answer to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you..." (1 Peter 3:15) I joined this site with that verse in mind and to become more aware of the arguments that people make for and against Christianity. I don't expect to change much about what people on TA believe. I came to become more informed. I know that I need to get to a point where what I believe is not any sort of presupposition. Although it is tough because I am in college right now and can't put as much time into this as I would like.

So I think it is a futile exercise to debate the meaning of its texts when they are based upon something that does not exist as far as I am concerned.


I understand that, but that doesn't necessarily go for everyone here. 

@Reg:

"I am rambling a bit..."

A bit???

You rambled on so much my computer ran out of memory. :D

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