Luke 7: 36-50 tells of a Pharisee who invited Jesus to dinner. A woman known as a sinner came and washed his feet with her tears and hair. Jesus saw how sincere and humble she was before Him. This was before the cross but Jesus said that all of her sins were forgiven and that she was now saved. Wasn’t she still under the law until the cross?
I am been doing a lot of thinking in regards to Grace, the Mosaic Law, the feasts and other things the Messianic movement thinks should apply to the Christians and wanted your opinion on my thoughts.
The central passages I am looking at are found in Acts 15. Paul has returned from his trip to the Gentiles and an issue had arisen specifically in regards to circumcision. Peter, Paul, James and those apostles still alive and in Jerusalem held a council and from that came four requirements for Gentile believers: They were to not engage in sexual immorality, not eat meat given to idols or from an animal that was strangled nor were they to eat or drink blood. Nothing was said about Gentile believers being required to observe any of the Jewish festivals, which fall under the Mosaic covenant nor any of the other Mosaic laws. Further; the act of circumcision was not required of Gentile believers as this was part of the Abrahamic covenant.
My thoughts are this: Peter was given authority by Jesus to bind or loose on earth and in heaven. God did not change but gave Peter the authority to make changes, not to the covenant it self but to how it would be implemented. Notice the changes in Acts 15 apply only to the Gentile believers, not the Jewish believers. I believe Gentile believers were given an exemption from the feasts and ceremonial laws by Peter.
Where does this leave Jewish believers in Christ then? They are covered by Christ of course and some of the feasts and ritual celebrations have to change a bit but I believe God still requires them to be held to them. This is a higher standard situation: God chose the Hebrew people for himself and he has always held them to a higher level of behavior before all men. Like the Gentile believers they are no longer bound to the Mosaic law, but a life truly lived in Christ will cause us to voluntarily obey them as more of a side effect rather than requirement. That is where my thinking is going anyway. Could you comment on it please?
I worry about my friend. She believes that God forgives her sin but does not accept His forgiveness because she tells herself she is unworthy. I know in regards to our salvation, when we believe we are sinners and realize we need a savior, we also need to accept Jesus as our Savior or we would remain in our sins. Is the same true of forgiveness? How can I help her?
Re the picture of the hooded (“shepherd”?) on your homepage: is that supposed to be Jesus Christ? I’m sure we don’t need to have an IMAGE of our Savior. Perhaps the Ten Commandments even forbids it …? I tend to associate images with the worship in the Roman church. I look forward to your response as I count the issue as important.
I’ve written to you before expressing my frustration at being married to an unbeliever and being unable to be as fully involved in service as I would like to be. Recently, I’ve sensed the Lord telling me I’ve been trying to walk someone else’s walk instead of my own walk with Him. Instead of embracing my situation and what the Lord would have me do, I’ve been envious of other Christians who are free to serve in the church. I really want to walk in the works God has laid out before me.
I am a wife and mother, and am completely surrounded by family members who do not know the Lord. I’m sensing the Lord telling me my service to Him involves praying for and ministering to my family who don’t know Him. I’m not sure of the best way to do that aside from prayer and would love to have your wisdom in this situation. I know time is very short, and I don’t want to spend what’s left of my earthly life envying someone else’s walk, thereby missing out on what God intends for me. What do you think?
I have read your study on Matt: 25:1-13, about the 10 virgins. I have always believed this to be about the rapture of the church, but your explanation has convinced me it is about trib. believers, those who come to faith after the rapture. The only thing I am still confused about is v. 10. How can anyone come into the marriage after the rapture? Who would be left for the millennial kingdom?
In response to your answer to the question about Proverbs 8, how can we explain Proverbs 8:22-31 as referring to Jesus when Jehovah’s Witnesses use this to try to say that Jesus was created (as the Archangel Michael) by Jehovah God?
I was on your site reading about the time when the dead in Christ will be resurrected and caught up in the air at the time of the rapture. Now I am confused. I always thought that when I passed away, my soul would go to heaven or hell depending if I had accepted Jesus Christ as my personal savior. I have done this and have looked forward to being in heaven with Jesus and the Lord God Almighty. If the dead in Christ will rise first, then does that mean they’ve all been waiting in limbo or does the Lord send the ones who have died back to be in a resurrected body?
Re: Amos 1:6-7. I first discovered this scripture about the time I discovered the scripture about the destruction of Damascus. Is this part of the Psams 83 prophecy about the defeat of Egypt and the destruction of Damascus? Isn’t Jordan a part of this as well and Amman Jordan destroyed at this time? Thanks for your web site. it is truly a breath of fresh air in a world full of luke warmness, It is certainly meat and not milk.
What sin did Cain’s wife commit to have equal punishment of her husband, being banished from God? Surely, God wouldn’t punish her just for being ‘married’ to Cain, would He? As there were no ‘priests’, etc to perform the marriage ceremony, how was this ritual performed, and by whom?