The Christian and the Old Testament (Part 4) - Transitional Period Between OT & NT; Parts of the OT That are Still in Effect

For a master copy of the outline, click here: The Christian and the Old Testament VI. The transitional period between the resurrection of Christ and the destruction of Jerusalem and the Temple in 70AD. 1. Christ officially and legally abolished the law of Moses when He died on the cross (Col 2:14 c/w Eph 2:15 c/w 2Co 3:13). 2. The New Testament which declared that the law was abolished was not written down by the apostles until 20-30 years later. 3. During the period from the death of Christ until the destruction of Jerusalem in 70AD, the temple still stood and the ceremonies were still kept by the unconverted Jews. 4. While the temple still stood, Christians would meet in it for worship (Act 2:46; 3:1; 5:19-21; 5:42). 5. During that time, there were believing Jews who were still zealous of the law (Act 21:20). 6. It was still lawful for the believing Jews to keep parts of the law while the temple stood during this transitional period. 7. The apostle Paul is a good example of this. 8. Though Paul was no longer in the Jews' religion (Gal 1:13-16), he was still a Jew (Act 22:3). 9. Being a Jew by nationality and lineage, Paul could still be as a Jew to the degree and extent that he was not compromising his Christianity (1Co 9:20). A. Paul went into the synagogues of the Jews on many occasions which he used as platform to preach the gospel. (Act 13:14-16; Act 14:1; Act 17:1-2; Act 17:10-11; Act 18:4,7-8) B. Paul would even have Timothy become as a Jew to gain the Jews. (Act 16:1-3) C. Paul even went so far as to go into the temple with some believing Jews which had taken a vow and was purified with them in the temple and a sacrifice was offered for them. (Act 21:18-26) i. These were believing Jews who were still zealous of the law (Act 21:20). ii. This was during the transitional time when the New Testament was in effect, and the Old Testament was technically abolished (2Co 3:13), but while the temple stood it was practically decaying and waxing old and was ready to vanish away (Heb 8:13). iii. During that time, the Jews could still make non-sin offerings, but they couldn't make sin offerings since there remained no sacrifice for sins after Jesus' final sufficient sacrifice for sins. (Heb 10:8-14) iv. There had been rumors floating around which said that Paul was teaching the Jews which were living among the Gentiles that they should forsake the law of Moses, not circumcise their children, and not walk after the customs of the Jews. (Act 21:21) v. There were four Jews there that had apparently taken the vow of a Nazarite (Act 21:23-24) which required a man to shave his head and offer sacrifices at the end of the vow. (Num 6:2,5,18-20) vi. James asked Paul to go with those Jews into the temple and purify himself with them and be at charges with them while they shaved their heads, so that everyone would know that Paul walked orderly as a Jew and kept the law. (Act 21:24) vii. Paul did purify himself with them and entered into the temple where an offering was made for everyone of them. (Act 21:26) viii. It must be assumed that the sin offering that was part of the Nazarite vow (Num 6:13-14) was not offered since Paul and these other men were Christians, but only the burnt offerings, peace offerings, meat offerings, drink offerings, or wave offerings (Num 6:14-17,20) were offered for them. ix. Since Paul was a Jew and he could still keep parts of the ceremonial law, he became as a Jew to the Jews to gain the Jews. (1Co 9:20) 10. Once Jerusalem and the temple were destroyed in 70AD, it was not even possible to keep the ceremonial parts of the law of Moses. 11. By this time, the New Testament was complete (or very near completion), and the apostles and other Christians knew that the Old Testament was indeed abolished and done away. VII. What parts of the Old Testament are still binding on New Testament Christians today? 1. The fallacy that the law of Moses is separated into the moral law vs. the ceremonial law and only the ceremonial law was abolished. A. It is alleged that Deu 4:13-14 and 2Ki 21:8 teach two laws: the moral law (ten commandments) and the ceremonial law (statues and judgments which Moses wrote and taught). B. The ten commandments is referred to as the law of Moses (Mar 7:10 c/w Exo 20:12 c/w 2Co 3:15), and they, along with the rest of the law of Moses, were abolished by Christ (2Co 3:7,11,13; Col 2:14-17). (See Section V,4) C. Furthermore, the "moral law" was not limited to the ten commandments because there were "moral laws" given in the law of Moses outside of the ten commandments, such as laws against fornication and sodomy (Deu 22:21; Lev 18:22). 2. Any commandment of the OT that is repeated in the NT is binding on Christians today. A. Since the OT is abolished, the only commandments that still apply are the ones that are repeated in the NT. i. The fact that the Old and New Testaments are called a testaments should tell us something about what parts of the Old Testament are binding on Christians today. ii. Testament n. - 1. Law. A formal declaration, usually in writing, of a person's wishes as to the disposal of his property after his death; a will. Formerly, properly applied to a disposition of personal as distinct from real property (cf. c). Now rare (chiefly in phrase last will and testament). iii. If a person writes a last will and testament, and then later writes a new last will and testament prior to his death, only the last testament (the new testament) goes into effect upon his death. iv. Any previous testaments which he wrote are null and void when a new (last) one is written. v. If the person used his old will and testament as a starting point and decided to leave some of it as is, and then proceeded to delete large parts of it and add in new things, only the parts of his old will and testament which he carried over into his new will and testament would be binding upon his death, but not the parts which were not carried over into the new. vi. So it is with God's Old and New Testaments. vii. Only the parts of the Old Testament that are specifically carried over into the New Testament are binding on Christians today after the death of Christ the testator (Heb 9:15-17). B. Nine of the ten commandments are repeated in the New Testament, but the fourth (remember the sabbath) is not and is therefore abolished. i. 1st commandment - No other gods before God (Exo 20:3 c/w 1Co 8:4-6 c/w Act 14:11-15; Mat 4:10). ii. 2nd commandment - No idols (Exo 20:4-6 c/w 1Co 10:7,14 c/w 1Jo 5:21; Act 17:29). iii. 3rd commandment - No taking God's name in vain (Exo 20:7). a. Vain adj. - II. 5. In the adv b. phrase in vain, to no effect or purpose; ineffectually, uselessly, vainly. 6. to vain: a. To disregard, to treat with contempt. b. With name as object. To use or utter (the name of God) lightly, needlessly, or profanely; transf. to mention or speak of casually or idly. b. Jesus taught that God's name is to be hallowed (Mat 6:9). (i) Hallow v. - 1. trans. To make holy; to sanctify, purify. 3. To honour as holy, to regard and treat with reverence or awe (esp. God or his name). (ii) To hallow (to regard with reverence) God's name is the opposite of taking it vain (to disregard, to treat with contempt). (iii) Therefore, Jesus taught that we should not take the Lord's name in vain. c. Using the Lord's name in vain is blasphemy, which is forbidden in the NT (2Ti 3:2; Col 3:8). (i) Blasphemy - 1. Profane speaking of God or sacred things; impious irreverence. (ii) Profane adj. - 1. Not pertaining or devoted to what is sacred or biblical, esp. in profane history, literature; unconsecrated, secular, lay, common; civil, as distinguished from ecclesiastical. 3. Characterized by disregard or contempt of sacred things, esp., in later use, by the taking of God's name in vain; irreverent, blasphemous, ribald; impious, irreligious, wicked. (iii) Profane and vain speech are the same thing (1Ti 6:20; 2Ti 2:16). (iv) God's name is not to be blasphemed (1Ti 6:1). For a master copy of the outline, click here: The Christian and the Old Testament