Are We Christians Still Under the Law, Or Are We Not?

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Q: Are We Christians Still Under the Law, Or Are We Not?

Some claim we are still bound by the original 10 Commandments, while others claim they have been set aside. Where in the new testament does it say that you can just dismiss and forget about all the rules in the old testament?
What’s a person to believe, and why?

A: It’s best to approach these things logically and carefully.

The first question to ask is this: Why would we have even needed a Holy Redeemer, along with a whole New Covenant, if the old one was intended to be permanent (lasting until the end of time) and salvific (capable of getting one into Heaven)?

Then there’s the famous “jot or tittle” passage, beginning with Matthew Chapter 5, verse 17:

Matthew 5:17 Do not think that I am come to destroy the law, or the prophets. I am not come to destroy, but to fulfil.
Matthew 5:18 For amen I say unto you, till heaven and earth pass, one jot, or one tittle shall not pass of the law, till all be fulfilled. 

Please note that everything in the above verse is CONDITIONED on Jesus’ statement “TILL ALL BE FULFILLED.”

To say it another way, Jesus didn’t come to destroy anything. He came to fulfill. And once something has been fulfilled, it is typically set aside, while we progress to bigger and hopefully, better things.

But so there would be no mistake as to who Jesus is, and why he was sent, he explained that IF he did not fulfill all things, then we would CERTAINLY be stuck with the curse of the law, until the end of time.

In fact, Jesus confirmed that he had fulfilled all things on several different occasions.

Early in his public ministry

Luk 16:13 No servant can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one and love the other: or he will hold to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and mammon.
Luk 16:14 Now the Pharisees, who were covetous, heard all these things: and they derided him.
Luk 16:15 And he said to them: you are they who justify yourselves before men, but God knoweth your hearts. For that which is high to men is an abomination before God.
Luk 16:16 The law and the prophets were until John. From that time the kingdom of God is preached:and every one useth violence towards it.
Luk 16:17 And it is easier for heaven and earth to pass than one tittle of the law to fall.

From the Cross, at Calvary: 

Joh 19:25 Now there stood by the cross of Jesus, his mother and his mother’s sister, Mary of Cleophas, and Mary Magdalen.
Joh 19:26 When Jesus therefore had seen his mother and the disciple standing whom he loved, he saith to his mother: Woman, behold thy son.
Joh 19:27 After that, he saith to the disciple: Behold thy mother. And from that hour, the disciple took her to his own.
Joh 19:28 Afterwards, Jesus knowing that all things were now accomplished, that the scripture might be fulfilled, said: I thirst.

After he rose again from the dead:

Luk 24:44 And he said to them: These are the words which I spoke to you while I was yet with you, that all things must needs be fulfilled which are written in the law of Moses and in the prophets and in the psalms, concerning me.
Luk 24:45 Then he opened their understanding, that they might understand the scriptures.
Luk 24:46 And he said to them: Thus it is written, and thus it behoved Christ to suffer and to rise again from the dead, the third day:
Luk 24:47 And that penance and remission of sins should be preached in his name, unto all nations, beginning at Jerusalem.
Luk 24:48 And you are witnesses of these things.

There’s an interesting correlation with Moses and the Promised Land here, too.

The stated reason for Moses not being able to enter the Promised Land was his impertinence in striking the Rock (from which water flowed) more than once.

In keeping with the spirit of prophecy, and engaging in a little conservative biblical exegesis, it’s quite likely that another reason Moses wasn’t allowed to enter the Promised Land (the Promised Land being a metaphor for Heaven) is because Moses, the Law Giver, couldn’t get anyone into the Promised Land of Heaven, since the Law was never intended to be salvific, in the first place.

It was faithful Joshua, who got to lead the Israelites across the Jordan, which was “stopped up” for that purpose, by the power of God.

Grace, plus faith did it. Not any law.

Same thing today … as typically obtained through baptism into the only Church that Jesus ever founded, for the purpose of our salvation … the Catholic Church. 

Click this link for a complete list of Catholic Church teachings on the matter. 

Solid Old Testament Precedent for Mary’s Eternal Virginity

 

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Solid Old Testament Precedent for Mary’s Eternal Virginity

Under the Old Covenant Law … as described in the book of Numbers, Chapter 30 … God made divine provision for both women and men to make sacred vows, and subject to the acceptance and ratification of those vows by the father or the husband … those vows would then remain in effect for life.

Church tradition always held that the Blessed Virgin Mary was known to have been dedicated to God from a young age, and that she took a sacred vow to remain a virgin FOR HER ENTIRE LIFETIME.

We also knew that such a vow was totally legitimate and binding, even if the virgin maiden was to be married someday.

According to the Law, upon marriage, it would be left up to the husband (in this case, St. Joseph) to either accept or reject the wife’s sacred vow. If it was accepted, it immediately became binding on both parties, and remained perpetually in effect.

The apostles also knew Mary, and they accepted her perpetual virginity as a fact, just as the Catholic Church has always taught.

In light of this very strong biblical precedent, in light of the constant teaching of the Church on this matter, from the earliest days, and in light of the lack of ANY definitive New Testament evidence to the contrary … it’s high time our Protestant brethren stopped claiming that the Blessed Virgin Mary, the Mother of Jesus, the Ark of the New Covenant, the Mother of the Church, and the holiest woman who ever lived, could have EVER broken a sacred vow.

It’s simply not right!     

Here’s the complete Old Testament text, from the Book of Numbers:

Num 30:1 The LORD told Moses to say to Israel’s tribal leaders:
Num 30:2 When one of you men makes a promise to the LORD, you must keep your word.
Num 30:3 Suppose a young woman who is still living with her parents makes a promise to the LORD.
Num 30:4 If her father hears about it and says nothing, she must keep her promise.
Num 30:5 But if he hears about it and objects, then she no longer has to keep her promise. The LORD will forgive her, because her father did not agree with the promise.
Num 30:6 Suppose a woman makes a promise to the LORD and then gets married. If her husband later hears about the promise but says nothing, she must do what she said, whether she meant it or not.
Num 30:7 (SEE 30:6)
Num 30:8 But if her husband hears about the promise and objects, she no longer has to keep it, and the LORD will forgive her.
Num 30:9 Widows and divorced women must keep every promise they make to the LORD.
Num 30:10 Suppose a married woman makes a promise to the LORD.
Num 30:11 If her husband hears about the promise and says nothing, she must do what she said.
Num 30:12 But if he hears about the promise and does object, she no longer has to keep it. The LORD will forgive her, because her husband would not allow her to keep the promise.
Num 30:13 Her husband has the final say about any promises she makes to the LORD.
Num 30:14 If her husband hears about a promise and says nothing about it for a whole day, she must do what she said–since he did not object, the promise must be kept.
Num 30:15 But if he waits until the next day to stop her from keeping her promise, he is the one who must be punished.
Num 30:16 These are the laws that the LORD gave Moses about husbands and wives, and about young daughters who still live at home.

 

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Submitted by Bob Stanley – with thanks to Dr. Brent M.