The Seventh Trumpet

– posted by arover2014

[this article was contributed by Alex Rover]

“Behold, I tell you a great mystery. We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed. In a moment. In a twinkling of an eye. At the last trumpet.”

These are the opening words of Handel’s Messiah: ‘45 Behold, I tell you a mystery’ & ‘46: The trumpet shall sound’. I highly encourage you to listen to this song before reading this article. If you would envision me writing at my computer with headphones covering my ears, chances are that I will be listening to Handel’s Messiah. Along with my “Word of Promise” dramatic reading of the NKJV, this is my favorite playlist for many years already.
The words, of course, are based on 1 Corinthians 15. I can unequivocally say that this chapter has had a profound impact on me in the past decade, functioning as a ‘skeleton key’ of sorts, steadily opening up more doors of understanding.

“The trumpet shall sound, and the dead be raised incorruptible”.

Imagine one day hearing this trumpet! As Christians, it signals the happiest day of our eternal lives, for it signals that we are about to be joined with our Lord!

Yom Teruah

It is an autumn day on the first day of the Tishrei moon, the seventh month. This day is called Yom Teruah, the first day of a new year. Teruah refers to the shouting of the Israelites which was followed by the fall of the walls of Jericho.

“Have seven priests carry seven rams’ horns [shophar] in front of the ark. On the seventh day march around the city seven times, while the priests blow the horns [shophar]. When you hear the signal from the ram’s horn [shophar], have the whole army give a loud battle cry. Then the city wall will collapse and the warriors should charge straight ahead.” – Joshua 6:4-5

This day has come to be known as the Feast of Trumpets. The Torah commands Jews to observe this holy day (Lev 23:23-25; Num 29:1-6). It is a seventh day, a day upon which all work is forbidden. Yet unlike the other Torah festivals, there was no clear purpose given for this festival. [1]

"Tell the Israelites, 'In the seventh month, on the first day of the month, you must have a complete rest, a memorial announced by loud horn blasts, a holy assembly.” (Lev 23:24)

Even though the Torah does not explain the express nature of Yom Teruah, it reveals clues about its purpose, foreshadowing God’s great mystery. (Psalm 47:5; 81:2; 100:1)

Shout [Teruah] out praise to God, all the earth! […] Come and witness God’s exploits! His acts on behalf of people are awesome! […] For you, O God, tested us; you purified us like refined silver. You allowed men to ride over our heads; we passed through fire and water, but you brought us out into a wide open place.” (Psalm 66:1;5;7;10-12)

Hence I have come to believe that Yom Teruah was a feast to foreshadow a future time of complete rest for God's people, a gathering of a holy assembly, related to the “sacred secret” of God’s will, due to occur at the “fullness of the times”. (Eph 1:8-12; 1Cor 2:6-16)
Satan has been great at working to hide this mystery from the people of this world! Just like the Christian influence on American Jews has led to a closer alignment of Hanukah with Christmas, the Babylonian influence on exiled Jews has led to a transformation of the Yom Teruah celebration.
Under Babylonian influence the Day of Shouting has become a New Year’s celebration (Rosh Hashanah). The first stage was the adoption of Babylonian names for the month. [2] The second stage was that the Babylonian New Year called “Akitu” often fell on the same day as Yom Teruah. When the Jews started calling the 7th month by the Babylonian name “Tishrei”, the first day of “Tishrei” became “Rosh Hashanah” or New Years. Babylonians celebrated Akitu twice: once on the 1st of Nissan and once on the 1st of Tishrei.

The Blowing of the Shophar

On the first day of every new moon, the shophar would briefly sound to mark the start of the new month. But on Yom Teruah, the first day of the seventh month, prolonged blasts would sound.
Seven days the Israelites marched around the walls of Jericho. The horn blasts marked warnings upon Jericho. On the Seventh day, they blew their horns seven times. The walls came down with a great shout, and Jehovah’s day arrived, when the Jews entered the Promised Land.
In the revelation of Jesus Christ (Rev 1:1), traditionally dated around 96 A.D., it is prophesied that seven angels would blow seven trumpets after the opening of the seventh seal. (Rev 5:1; 11:15) In this article, it is the final of these trumpet sounds that we are particularly interested in.
The seventh trumpet is described as a day of shouting, namely a day of “loud voices” (NET), “great voices” (KJV), “voices and thunders” (Etheridge). What great shouting is heard?

“Then the seventh angel blew his trumpet, and there were loud voices in heaven saying: ‘The kingdom of the world has become the kingdom of our Lord and of his Christ, and he will reign for ever and ever.’” (Rev 11:15)

Subsequently the twenty-four elders clarify:

“the time has come for the dead to be judged, and the time has come to give to your servants, the prophets, their reward, as well as to the saints and those who revere your name, both small and great, and the time has come to destroy those who destroy the earth.” (Rev 11:18)

This is the great event that Yom Teruah foreshadowed, it is the ultimate day of shouting. It is the day of God’s finished mystery!

“in the days of the voice of the seventh angel, when he is about to sound, then the mystery of God is finished, as He preached to His servants the prophets.” (Rev 10:7 NASB)

“For the Lord himself will come down from heaven with a shout of command, with the voice of an archangel, and with the trumpet of God.” (1Thess 4:16)

What Happens When the Seventh Trumpet Sounds?

Leviticus 23:24 describes two aspects of Yom Teruah: It is a day of complete rest, and of holy assembly. We will examine both aspects in relation to the seventh trumpet.
When Christians think of a day of rest, we may reflect on Hebrews chapter 4 which deals specifically with this topic. Here Paul establishes a direct link between “the promise of entering his [God’s] rest” (Hebrews 4:1) and the events surrounding Joshua and by extension, the fall of Jericho and the entry into the Promised Land.

“For if Joshua had given them rest, God would not have spoken afterward about another day” (Hebrews 4:8)

Jamieson-Fausset-Brown comments that those brought into Canaan by Joshua entered only a day of relative rest. That day, God’s people entered the Promised Land. Entering God’s rest is thus related to entering God’s promise. It was also a day of shouting, a day of victory over their enemies and a day of rejoicing. Yet Paul clearly states that this rest was not "it". There would be “another day”.
The day of rest which we look forward to is the Millennial Reign of Christ found in Revelation 20:1-6. This starts with the sounding of the 7th trumpet. The first proof for this is that, in Revelation 11:15, the kingdom of the world becomes the kingdom of Christ upon the blowing of this trumpet. The second proof is in the timing of the first resurrection:

“Blessed and holy is the one who takes part in the first resurrection. The second death has no power over them, but they will be priests of God and of Christ, and they will reign with him for a thousand years.” (Rev 20:6)

When does this resurrection occur? At the final trumpet! There is clear scriptural evidence that these events are linked:

“They will see the Son of Man arriving on clouds of heaven with power and great glory. And he will send his angels with a loud trumpet blast, and they will gather his elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other.” (Mat 24:29-31)

“For the Lord himself will come down from heaven with a shout of command, with the voice of an archangel, and with the trumpet of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first.”  (1Thess 4:15-17)

“Listen, I will tell you a mystery:  We will not all sleep [in death], but we shall all be changed – in a moment, in the blinking of an eye, at the last trumpet. […] Death has been swallowed up in victory. Where, O death, is your victory? Where, O death, is your sting?” (1Cor 15:51-55)

Thus God’s people will be entering God’s rest. But what of the holy assembly? Well, we just read the scriptures: the elect or holy ones of God will be assembled or gathered on that very day, along with those who are asleep in Christ and who will receive the first resurrection.
As with God’s victory over Jericho, it will be a day of judgment against this world. It will be a day of reckoning for the wicked, but a day of shouting and joy for God’s people. A day of promise and great wonder.

[1] To compare with other festivals which are given clear purpose: Feast of Unleavened bread commemorates the exodus from Egypt, the celebration of the beginning of the barley harvest. (Exod 23: 15; Lev 23:4-14) The feast of Weeks celebrates the wheat harvest. (Exod 34:22) Yom Kippur is a national Day of Atonement (Lev 16), and the Feast of Booths commemorates the wandering of the Israelites in the desert and the ingathering of the harvest. (Exod 23:16)
[2] Jerusalem Talmud, Rosh Hashanah 1:2 56d

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  • Comment by MM on 2015-05-20 14:08:39

    In order to understand the advents of our Savior, we MUST understand the feast days as given to us in the Torah. The feasts of the Lord are prophetic rehearsals of the first and second coming of Christ.
    There are a total of seven feasts ordained by the Lord.
    The Spring feasts are:
    Passover (Pesach),
    Unleavened Bread,
    First Fruits, and
    Pentecost (Shavu’ot).
    The Fall feasts are:
    Trumpets (Yom Teruah),
    Day of Atonement (Yom Kippur), and Tabernacles (Sukkot).
    Though these are all referred to, in a broad sense only three are truly feast days where we are instructed to actually celebrate with a feast. Yet, they are all generally referred to as feast days.
    Leviticus 23:2 “Speak to the Israelites and say to them: ‘These are my appointed feasts, the appointed feasts of the LORD, which you are to proclaim as sacred assemblies.”
    They were given to all twelve tribes of Israel and all those who left Egypt with the twelve tribes. The Scriptures tell us that they are always to be observed. Always.
    Zechariah tells us that Tabernacles is even observed in the Millennium.
    Zechariah 14:16 “Then the survivors from all the nations that have attacked Jerusalem will go up year after year to worship the King, the LORD Almighty, and to celebrate the Feast of Tabernacles.”
    Verse 4 of Leviticus 23 explains how these feast days are to be observed at their appointed times. The Hebrew word for appointed times is “mô‘êd.”
    Verse 4 says, “These are the LORD’s appointed feasts, the sacred assemblies you are to proclaim at their appointed times:”
    “Appointed times” - mo’ed.
    Jesus fulfilled Passover on the EXACT day of Passover. The anniversary of the Passover in Egypt. He died when the Passover lamb was to be slain, about 3PM on the fourteenth day of the first Hebraic month.
    He was laid in the grave the EXACT same night when the feast of Unleavened Bread began. That was when the sun went down and the fourteenth day closed, and entered into the fifteenth. This was and is the anniversary of when the Hebrews left Egypt. He rose from the grave on the EXACT day of First Fruits, the day when the first fruits of harvest was to be waved, and the anniversary of when they crossed the Red Sea on dry ground.
    And, finally, He fulfilled Pentecost on the EXACT day of Pentecost (or Shavu’ot in Hebrew). He put the law in our hearts on the anniversary of when Moses brought the law down from Mt. Sinai.
    Doesn’t it only make sense that He will follow suit in the same pattern at His second coming? Meaning His second coming will fulfill the Fall Mo’adim (holy days) at His second coming like His first coming fulfilled the Spring Mo’adim. His first coming was to establish His priesthood in the Heavens. The humble servant who came to serve. But now, at His second coming, He comes as conquering king to set up His government on Earth. The government will rest on His shoulders. He will establish His throne in Jerusalem where He will reign for one thousand years. Priest at His first coming. King at His second coming. On the day that is called feast of “Trumpets."
    All of these fulfillments were in conjunction with His first coming. Doesn’t it only make sense that His second coming will likewise parallel the fulfillments, to the day, of the Fall feasts?

    • Reply by Skye on 2015-05-20 19:22:48

      MM, You say, "These were given to all twelve tribes of Israel ..... The scriptures tell us that they are always to be observed. Always." I'm sorry if I've misunderstood you, but could you explain what you mean by, "Always"?
      And what are your thoughts on Zech 14:16 with regard to the celebrating of the Festival of Tabernacles in the Millennium? Thanks.

      • Reply by MM on 2015-05-20 22:20:36

        At Leviticus 23:14,21,31,41 the statement "it shall be a lasting statute in all your dwellings throughout your generations."
        God's appointed Holy days were included in the Torah for instructions for Israel and any believer who tied himself to God's people.
        These instructions never ended. Jesus himself followed the Torah and also observed the feast days.
        Jesus says at Matt. 5:17-19:
        “Do not think that I have come to destroy the law(Torah) or the prophets. I have not come to destroy them but to fulfill them. For truly I say to you, until heaven and earth pass away, not one tiny letter or one stroke of a letter will pass away from the law until all takes place. Therefore whoever abolishes one of the least of these commandments and teaches people to do so will be called least in the kingdom of heaven, but whoever keeps them and teaches them, this person will be called great in the kingdom of heaven."
        According to Jesus' words, the Torah is still alive and won't be done away with until heaven and earth pass away.
        Zech. 14:16-19 is a future prophecy detailing how nations will go to Jerusalem every year to celebrate the feast of booths.

        • Reply by Skye on 2015-05-21 03:36:00

          MM, God's prophetic calendar "the feasts of the Lord" is a very interesting subject and thanks for explaining it. However, with regard to Matt 5:17 "Do not think that I have come to abolish the Law and the Prophets; I have come not to abolish them but to fulfil them." The fulfilment meant Jesus was teaching the spiritual intention of the law and not the letter of the law.

        • Reply by MM on 2015-05-21 11:34:16

          Skye ,
          The word "fulfill" in that verse is translated from the Greek word "pleroo" (from plērēs, "be full,"). It means "to properly, fill to individual capacity, i.e. to the extent it is "meet"
          When I fill my tank with gas, I don't rip the tank from off my vehicle. I fill it up to the top. That's what Christ did. He didn't destroy the Law or the Prophets.
          Instead he fulfilled it by living it, enhancing it's meaning to honest hearted ones, explaining it and carrying it out. Perfect as he was, he was the only one that could fulfill the Torah. One of the reasons He is called the Word. He is the Word of God in flesh. He showed us how to live according to God's Word.
          Because he fulfilled it, do we we consider it done away with?
          When Jesus was asked what is the greatest commandment he quoted the Torah:
          “Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the Law?” Jesus replied: “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.”
          How can a person love God with His whole heart, soul and mind? We learn about God when we read His Word. His ways moves us to love Him. Our love for God moves us to obey Him.
          "In fact, this is love for God: to keep his commands. And his commands are not burdensome" (1 John 5:3)
          How can a person love his neighbor as himself? We shoe love through action, treating our neighbor the way we want to be treated. The laws which touch on human relations give us guidance on how to show love to our neighbors (don't steal, don't murder, don't covet, don't fornicate, etc)
          Just imagine a person that loves Jehovah with all His heart, soul, and mind. Such a person, out of love for God will follow what God says and thus, fulfill the law.
          Imagine a person who loves His neighbor as himself. Such a person will treat his neighbor accordingly. Thus fulfilling the law.
          That's why the whole law and prophets hang on these two commandments. That's how Jesus fulfilled it.
          Jesus warned the Pharisees:
          “Woe to you, teachers of the law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You give a tenth of your spices—mint, dill and cumin. But you have neglected the more important matters of the law—justice, mercy and faithfulness. You should have practiced the latter, without neglecting the former. You blind guides! You strain out a gnat but swallow a camel."
          The Pharisees, like the other sects of Judaism, went beyond the Law of God. They interpreted and added to God's Torah and made it a burden for God's people. Yet they neglected the true essence of the Torah "justice, mercy, faithfulness".
          We can fulfill the law too. Once we inherit the Spirit and become children of God we can walk in this love.
          Galatians 5:14

  • Comment by imacountrygirl2 on 2015-05-21 00:50:55

    MM, you said: "These instructions never ended. Jesus himself followed the Torah and also observed the feast days." You also said: "According to Jesus’ words, the Torah is still alive and won’t be done away with until heaven and earth pass away."
    I have never heard it expressed this way before. How exactly does the Torah still being alive affect us as Christians today? How would one fulfill all of the biblical laws of Judaism?

    • Reply by MM on 2015-05-21 09:38:44

      The anti-Semetic culture of the early church fathers has played a major part in the false teaching that the Torah (Law) ended. Hebrew culture, context, and language has been removed from the bulk of scripture. This false doctrine is held by most christian denominations and is based mostly on the letters of Paul. Paul' letters are very hard to understand. Peter confirms this at 2 Peter 3:15-17:
      "And regard the patience of our Lord as salvation, just as also our dear brother Paul wrote to you, according to the wisdom that was given to him, as he does also in all his letters, speaking in them about these things, in which there are some things hard to understand, which the ignorant and unstable distort to their own destruction, as they also do the rest of the scriptures. Therefore, dear friends, because you know this beforehand, guard yourselves so that you do not lose your own safe position because you have been led away by the error of lawless persons."
      Some "ignorant and unstable" brothers in Paul's day "distorted" Paul's letters which contained things that were "hard to understand." This was going on while Paul was alive. Imagine now 2,000 years later. Do we understand Paul's letters? Or are we "distorting" the scriptures and being "led away by the error of lawless persons?"
      One thing is certain. Paul would never teach against Christ. Just as Christ upheld the Torah, so did Paul.
      Paul says at 1 Cor. 11:1
      "Imitate me as I imitate Christ."
      If our current belief is that Paul taught against the Torah, we need to evaluate our perspective. Going back to the Hebrew roots of Christianity puts everything back in proper perspective. It's worth looking at. The truth is, we show our live for God by observing His commandments. (1 John 5:3) Where can we find His commandments? In the Torah.
      I'm not saying that we gain salvation by following the Torah. We follow the Torah (God's instructions) out of love for Him. In fact, this is the point of many of Paul's writings. First comes salvation through faith (Christ) then comes obedience. Our obedience is the fruit our faith is the seed.
      You mentioned the "biblical laws of Judaism". This is another misconception. The laws of God as given through Moses were not intended for a religion. But they are instructions for anyone calling himself one of God's people. God does not change. Neither do His standards. Murder, adultery, stealing were sin in Moses' day and they will always be sins. The other laws of God that CAN be followed (this is an entirely more complex subject) should be followed by anyone claiming to know the One true God Jehovah. Not that such will bring salvation, but it will make a difference and show God our love for Him and dedication to Him.
      I urge all I can, even if you don't agree with this, to please at least look into this matter. The deception of the early christian fathers and the Catholic Church in particular has done much damage. Jehovah is calling many out of this deception during these amazing times.
      "Do not let anyone deceive you in any way, for that day will not come unless the rebellion comes first, and the man of lawlessness is revealed, the son of destruction," (2 Thess. 2:3)

  • Comment by kev on 2015-05-21 02:45:08

    Thanks alex for a very interesting article . I never really connected the trumpet blasts of jerico with the trumpet blasts in revelation Before interesting stuff . Kev

  • Comment by kev on 2015-05-21 02:47:15

    Mm are you saying that we need to observe each and every aapect of the law in order to be saved . Kev

    • Reply by MM on 2015-05-21 10:20:30

      By no means. The Law cannot save anyone - it never did. Our imperfect nature prevents us from keeping the Law perfectly. This was the very reason Christ came, because we were condemned. Transgression of the Law=Sin(1 John 3:4) Sin=death.
      Whoever hates sin must uphold the law. Whoever fights the law is upholding sin whether he likes it or not. Grace is pardon for sin, which is breaking the law. The Savior died so that we can have grace. If we don't need law, we don't need forgiveness because without law sin doesn't exist. (Romans 4:15; Romans 5:13) If we don't need forgiveness we don't need a Savior. But we do need a Savior because we need grace because we sin by breaking the law.
      Law does not save us. God's mercy and grace is what saves us. This is the way it's always been. Israel was saved by God's mercy before they were even given the law. We aren't saved by our works no more than Israel were. We are saved by our faith. We receive God's grace when we admit we are sinners and put absolute faith in Christ who died because of our sin.
      Romans 3:27-30 Therefore where is boasting? It has been excluded. By what kind of law? Of works? No, but by a law of faith. For we consider a person to be justified by faith apart from the works of the law. Or is God the God of the Jews only? Is he not also the God of the Gentiles? Yes, also of the Gentiles, since God is one, who will justify those who are circumcised by faith and those who are uncircumcised through faith."
      Because we have grace do we sin (break the law)?
      Romans 3:31:
      "Therefore, do we nullify the law through faith? May it never be! But we uphold the law."

  • Comment by Alex Rover on 2015-05-21 08:51:32

    Paul explained righteousness cannot come through the Law. Yet he didn't condemn those who kept both the Law and Christ, only those who insisted the Law was required in addition to Christ (concerning circumcision). I am brought into a new covenant by Holy Spirit, and I am to keep the commandments of my covenant. For example, why would I slaughter a Passover Lamb, when Christ came to fulfill that and become the Passover? Instead, I keep the memorial of his death as he commanded. The Law is eternal, but many aspects of it foreshadowed Christ, and in the New Testament we are told exactly what to do in order to be saved.
    About the feasts, MM makes a good point. If Yom Teruah has a fulfillment in the 7th trumpet, what about the other feasts? The spring feasts like Passover and Pentecost already had their fulfillment. Yom Teruah starts the fall feasts, when Christ comes back. It thus makes sense that we can expect the day of atonement and tabernacles to point to events following Christ's return. I'll deal with those events in future articles.
    The point of the article on the 7th trumpet is very precise. My goal was to write an article with things that I believe that can be proven, and leave it as a foundation upon which I can build future articles that deal with prophecy. If I had included more far-fetched claims without laying this foundation, then the comments could become a battleground of debate. Hence why I did not include a subheading titled "when does the 7th trumpet blow?" That will be for future articles. This article is about common ground.

    • Reply by MM on 2015-05-21 10:26:44

      Laying the foundation-That makes sense. Patience is the key lol. I'm sorry. I read your article (which is well written and makes good points) and I got excited because I've been researching this very subject recently.

    • Reply by MM on 2015-05-21 10:42:40

      However, because of the idea that the law is ended, it forces us to pick and choose which laws to follow.
      For example, we know we shouldn't murder, or practice homosexuality. Yet we disregard other laws such as (Sabbath keeping, and the dietary laws).
      God called homosexuality an abomination (loathsome, detestable) Leviticus 18:22
      He also calls the eating of animals he deemed unclean as an abomination (loathsome, detestable) Deut. 14:3
      My question is why do we feel which of God's Laws are no longer binding. If He called homosexuality an abomination it will always be an abomination to Him. Likewise, if He called eating pork an abomination, it will always be an abomination to Him. Jesus never ate pork. Neither did the apostles. They followed the Torah.
      Granted some aspects of the Torah cannot be followed (stoning our children, sacrifices, going to Jerusalem 3 times a year). For one, there is no temple. There is currently no levitical priesthood or judgment system set up by God on Earth. Jesus is our High Priest and yes he was the Atonement sacrifice. (Paul touched on this in the book of Hebrews when many believers were put out of the synogogues.)
      But since there are laws that we currently cannot follow, dies this mean God's standards have changed?

      • Reply by Imgonaburn on 2015-05-21 11:03:38

        I'm not convinced that things once considered an abomination under mosaic law still apply. Jesus urged us to love one another and stressed that having love for our fellow man was a crucial part of our redemption. How can we be 'saved' if we consider homosexuality as an abomination. It's not our place to condemn or judge others on what we consider to be 'imperfection'. My son is homosexual and it is my belief that he was born that way. It made me question everything about the jw religion. Love is fundamental to Peace. If I have love for my fellow man regardless of their lifestyle I have peace. If I have Peace then I'm free to love both God and keep hold of my humanity.

      • Reply by Alex Rover on 2015-05-21 11:04:35

        MM, How would you have viewed circumcision back in the first century? Would you have said Gentiles required it?

        • Reply by MM on 2015-05-21 11:58:16

          This is a deep subject. Let me say this though, circumcision is NOT required for salvation. In fact, following the Law does not bring salvation.
          As far as the circumcision issue goes, I would love to share something with you that is entirely too long to post in this comment thread. However, if you don't mind, I can email it to you.

      • Reply by qspf on 2015-05-21 13:03:32

        "But since there are laws that we currently cannot follow, does this mean God’s standards have changed?"
        God's standards for Himself have never changed, but his requirements for US have changed. He had requirements for His nation of Israel, but because that nation rejected him, THEY broke the covenant, not God. But either way, the covenant was broken. You can't enforce agreement when the agreement was cancelled.
        Consider James 2:10: "For whoever observes all the Law but makes a false step in one point, he has become an offender against them all. 11 For he who said: “You must not commit adultery,” said also: “You must not murder.” If, now, you do not commit adultery but you do murder, you have become a transgressor of law."
        We could extend this and say, if you observe the Law in some respects, but fail to maintain and utilize the services of the Levitical priesthood in the Temple, perform the required animal sacrifices, sacrifice a lamb on Passover and roast it whole, stone your disobedient children to death, celebrate the Festival of Booths (inside of real booths), provide sin offerings when your children are born, etc. you have become an offender against all of the Law's provisions.
        Romans 10:4: "For Christ is the end of the Law, so that everyone exercising faith may have righteousness."
        Colossians 2:13-14: "He kindly forgave us all our trespasses 14 and blotted out the handwritten document against us, which consisted of decrees and which was in opposition to us; and He has taken it out of the way by nailing it to the torture stake.

        • Reply by MM on 2015-05-21 14:19:33

          is actually a reference to something IN the Torah? Could this be one of those verses that many use to misrepresent Paul? All the while, he could actually be reinforcing his argument in favor of the law

        • Reply by MM on 2015-05-21 14:20:13

          Colossians 2:13-14 13: And you, being dead in your sins and the uncircumcision of your flesh, hath he quickened together with him, having forgiven you all trespasses; 14 Blotting out the handwriting of ordinances that was against us, which was contrary to us, and took it out of the way, nailing it to his cross;
          These are some difficult verses for some explain. Many, however, use these two verses as “proof text” in saying that Jesus did away with the Law, but is this really possible? Is this really what Jesus nailed to the cross? Is this really what Paul is referencing in his letter to the Colossians?
          Paul lived in obedience to the law according to Acts 21 verse 24.
          Acts 21:24 “...Then everybody will know there is no truth in these reports about you, but that you yourself are living in obedience to the law.”
          And, he agreed with everything in the law and the prophets as mentioned in Acts 24 verse 14.
          Acts 21:14 “... I believe everything that agrees with the Law and that is written in the Prophets,”
          Knowing this, we can’t let our interpretations of Paul’s writings make him out to be a hypocrite - doing one thing, yet saying another. Paul was once a Pharisee, and though the Pharisees were steeped into their traditions, they studied the Word. Paul did as well. Paul’s writings were deep (very deep), so much so that they created confusion for many. In fact, he was falsely accused of preaching against Moses.
          Acts 21:21 They have been informed that you teach all the Jews who live among the Gentiles to turn away from Moses, telling them not to circumcise their children or live according to our customs.
          An accusation that is still being spread about Paul to this day. Knowing that Peter warned against those who misrepresent Paul to mean lawlessness, can we really hold to ANY interpretation of Paul’s writings that says that he opposed the law? Remember, his own words declare that he agrees with everything in the law and the prophets. (“... I believe everything that agrees with the Law and that is written in the Prophets,” Acts 24:14
          With this in mind, knowing his history as a Pharisee in teaching and that he lived according to the law, doesn’t it make sense that Paul would use illustrations and examples from the Law and the prophets? Could it be possible that this verse in Colossians 2:13-14 is actually a reference to something IN the Torah? Could this be one of those verses that many use to misrepresent Paul? All the while, he could actually be reinforcing his argument in favor of the law.

        • Reply by MM on 2015-05-21 14:23:11

          Thanks for your thoughts brother. You are correct. God's standards for Himself have not changed. As God cannot change, His standards for Humans (and everything else for that matter) has not changed.
          Situations and circumstances change, but God's ways do not. For example, Daniel is considered a faithful prophet of God. He no doubt observed the Torah to the best of his ability. Yet his circumstances didn't allow him to follow every law. For one, he could not go to Jerusalem 3 times a year as commanded for every male of Israel for the feast days. Does this mean he did not observe the law? Of course not. Dies this mean the law was done away with. No. His circumstances just could not allow him to follow that particular law.
          It's the same with our traffic laws in America. I'm expected to follow every traffic law while operating a vehicle. (By the way, there's hundreds of traffic laws, some that change yearly) But if my situation does not allow me to drive, am I disobeying the traffic laws? Are the traffic laws done away with because I can't drive?
          As I stated earlier, we can't observe levitical priesthood protocols, stone our children or sacrifice animals because circumstances won't allow it. There is currently no temple, no levitical priesthood, no judgment system. We are given provision though. We have Jesus as high priest who was the one time atonement sacrifice for our sins. So there is no need for the sin offerings. Yet Scripture tells of a time when we will sacrifice to God and even observe the Festival of Booths in the future. So some day circumstances will change.
          As far as the writings of Paul that you quoted.. it's very important for us to understand the context of Paul's letters. Like Peter said at 2 Peter 3:15-17:
          "And regard the patience of our Lord as salvation, just as also our dear brother Paul wrote to you, according to the wisdom that was given to him, as he does also in all his letters, speaking in them about these things, in which there are some things hard to understand, which the ignorant and unstable distort to their own destruction, as they also do the rest of the scriptures. Therefore, dear friends, because you know this beforehand, guard yourselves so that you do not lose your own safe position because you have been led away by the error of lawless persons. "
          It's very important that we make sure that we are living in line with God's Word. I urge you, please, even if you disagree with me, to look further into this.
          The teaching that the law ended goes back into the first century and was perpetuated by the church fathers who hated Jews. These same men taught that God rejected Israel and they (the church) replaced them [a teaching known as 'Replacement Theology']. It will never hurt if we are testing our beliefs with the intent of finding truth.

      • Reply by menrov on 2015-05-23 11:57:13

        I am afraid I absolutely disagree. The Law and everything that was linked to it ended with the death of Jesus. It is ok if someone wants to continue to celebrate festivals, but it is not correct to allocate any meaning to it with regard to a Christian life (Col. 2:16). Rom 10:4 says it all: Christ is the end of the Law.
        See also Rom 8:2. Anyone who want to maintain the Law, puts himself under a master that has no purpose.
        Gal 2:16 yet we know that no one is justified by the works of the law but by the faithfulness of Jesus Christ. And we have come to believe in Christ Jesus, so that we may be justified by the faithfulness of Christ and not by the works of the law, because by the works of the law no one will be justified.
        Gal 3:13 Christ redeemed us from the curse of the law by becoming a curse for us (because it is written, “Cursed is everyone who hangs on a tree”)
        If anyone believes he should maintain the law, he should obey the entire law which is impossible:
        Jam 2:11 For he who said, “Do not commit adultery,” also said, “Do not murder.” Now if you do not commit adultery but do commit murder, you have become a violator of the law.
        Gal 3:10 For all who rely on doing the works of the law are under a curse, because it is written, “Cursed is everyone who does not keep on doing everything written in the book of the law.”
        Jam 2:10 For the one who obeys the whole law but fails in one point has become guilty of all of it.
        It is good to consider this comment:
        Gal 5:18 But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the law.
        in contrast:
        Gal 5:3 And I testify again to every man who lets himself be circumcised that he is obligated to obey the whole law.

        • Reply by Jesusjeffrey on 2015-05-24 18:34:00

          Hi MM.
          This is a bit of subject but not entirely.
          It is an important point and will help me understand were your coming from.
          You said [These same men taught that God rejected Israel and they (the church) replaced them [a teaching known as ‘Replacement Theology’].
          Is the nation of Israel in position today as a fulfillment of Gods promises to them of old? Is it from God or men?

        • Reply by MM on 2015-05-25 11:17:34

          Many denominations hold to the view that God has forsaken the nation of Israel forever. They feel that because Israel crucified their Messiah, Jesus Christ, that God has taken away the promises He made to Israel, and has applied those promises to the present day predominantly Gentile church. However, we must not put "what we feel" above what God's Word actually says.
          In reality, God made an unconditional everlasting covenant with Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. God promised to make a new covenant with Israel and Judah. According to Bible prophecy, Israel will be back in their own land and will be the central focus in the end times. God revealed the mystery of Israel's temporary fall to the Apostle Paul.
          Prophecy is being fulfilled in our day.
          The re-establishment of Israel as a nation in 1948
          The re-establishment of Jerusalem as its capital in 1967
          The returning of Judah to Israel
          And now the scattered lost tribes of Israel beginning to return.
          Many say this isn't a fulfillment of prophecy because it wasn't God's doing but it was man's (the nations, U.N.)
          I ask though,
          When Israel was scattered throughout the nations, was it not a fulfillment of prophecy? Who did the scattering? Did not the nations play a part in coming into Israel and scattering them throughout the nations? The house of Israel….Ephraim…. had been conquered by Assyria, the people deported and scattered throughout the 120 nations that formed the Assyrian Empire. Was this a fulfillment of prohecy? Or just the work of man?
          Most of the Christian world don't see what's happening in the Middle East as a fulfillment of prophecy. Why not?
          Around the 17th century, Christianity took a fateful turn and came to the conclusion that we must have been misreading those prophecies about the return of Israel to their homeland all along.
          The Church concluded that in fact, Israel was NOT going to return; at the least, there wasn’t going to be a Jewish Israel. And, that the Israel the Bible spoke of…..both the people and the land…..were but symbolic. Symbolic of what? The gentile Church. The new mainstream beliefs that arose and which today dominate the Christian world, began in the 17th century; and these beliefs centered on the newly held conviction that Israel had been replaced by the Church. That Israel had been thoroughly and permanently rejected by Jehovah, because they had rejected His son. That all the promises of land and salvation the Hebrews had received through Abraham and Moses were taken from them and handed over to the gentile Church. That the Church would now get all the blessings promised to Abraham; those promises that we read about in the first few verses of chapter 12; Israel, on the other hand, would get all the curses that would come from disobedience to the laws of Moses.

        • Reply by Jesusjeffrey on 2015-05-25 18:59:25

          Thanks for your reply MM.
          I will consider your point of view carefully. I do think I will have more questions for you as this understanding of Israel's return has an enormous bearing on the implications of the rest of the discussion below.

  • Comment by katrina on 2015-05-21 11:33:15

    MM its the practising of sin that God condemns, how hard would it be for one that has homosexual tendencies not to be able to marry, but because they love God they fight this tendency, God sees what their background was their upbringing, their past mistakes that may have led to this, it would not be easy I have the utmost respect for anyone with these issues to not practise, the same with homosexuals with maybe addictions to sex and other things, we don't know their heart but know if they are trying to do as God requires in their sinful state and no longer practise, this is repentance covered by the value of Christ precious blood.
    Do you really believe that these ones want to be like that, those that are reaching out to God and his Son.
    Yes it is an abomination it is not the way that our God created us, but we are all lying in the power of the wicked one and we have a battle, surely Gods holy spirit help these ones as much as any of us.

    • Reply by MM on 2015-05-21 11:53:39

      Katrina and Imgonaburn,
      Please don't misunderstand what I'm saying here. No one should hate anyone for their sexual preferences. A man who fornicates with a woman is the same as a man who fornicates with a man - they are both sinning.
      I understand that a lot is involved when it comes to the shaping of a person and his/her preferences. We should not judge others nor look down on them nor shun them for their weaknesses or tendencies. However, God calls it a sin, then it is a sin. Once we come to an accurate knowledge, we realize that if God doesn't approve of something, we try our best to change it.
      I myself lived a life of sin. When I find that God does not approve of a way I'm living, do I continue in sin? No.
      James 4:17 says:
      "If anyone, then, knows the good they ought to do and doesn't do it, it is sin for them."
      We have the mercy of God which we should all be thankful for. But we show appreciation for this mercy by trying our best to walk the path that God set out for us in His Word.
      It is also our responsibility to uphold God's Word as the truth. It contains our instructions for life. As God's people, we don't give in to pressure, and we don't accept the views of this world. We share the message in God's Word with those who live contrary to it in hopes that they will come to an accurate knowledge and change.

      • Reply by Imgonaburn on 2015-05-21 13:03:22

        That's the point I'm making really. I'm more invested in the well being of my son. James 4:17 tells me that it would be sinful of me not to support him because, to me, that is the right thing to do. If that makes me weak then so be it. I don't believe that God will condemn me for it because God is Love. Jesus said the law is fulfilled in Him. He instructed us to have love for one another. I don't accept that it's all as simple as 'do as the Bible says or die' I believe that all sorts of men are acceptable to God. I'm not an avid bible reader. I may not have an accurate enough understanding of the rules and regulations. Which feast to observe or disregard. It's irrelevant to me. I'm not the sex police and don't believe that Jehovah is either. It's personal and private. I won't be pressured into doing something that I feel compromises me.
        I totally understand that you feel the need to uphold what is written. I used to feel the same and I also used to be a sinner. In fact, truth be told, I'm still a sinner! It might appear that I'm unduly influenced by the inclinations of the world, but it's much more basic than that. I'm influenced by the force of nature known as 'a mothers love'. It's irrational I know- I just can't help it!

        • Reply by kev on 2015-05-21 17:00:16

          Imgonna burn as you know im with you on this one . Its all too easy isnt it to start condemning homosexuals . Which seems to me to be regular pattern among many who claim to be religious they very often qoute romans 1 but what they dont qoute is the context at romans 2 and 3 . The point being if we judge others for breaking the law we have also condemned ourself because we have all at some point broke the law .Verses 28 to 32 of romans 1 mentions a whole host of other things as well . They are hardly mentioned . Its all to easy isnt to feel that we are a cut above others . Yet we are not !!! . Its all to easy to start condeming gay people . When your not gay and when your child is not gay . But you and i as parents will never give up . Because love never fails . 1 corinthians 13 v 7 and 8 . warm christian love . Your brother kevin .

        • Reply by MM on 2015-05-21 21:39:09

          The error of lawlessness leads to an unstable way of thinking. When we claim that God's Laws were ended, we are left confused. Which ones do we follow? Which ones do we keep? God's word clearly speaks against homosexuality.
          I'm not judging anyone. And by no means would I condemn anyone according to my own standards. But the word clearly says what kind of people will enter God's Kingdom.
          We can be sure that Jehovah deals with each individual situation justly and His wisdom is beyond ours so it is not up to any man to say who is righteous and who is not. We are all sinners. But if a person knows what God's Word says to do/not do and completely disregards it, the word describes the fate of such a person:
          "If we deliberately keep on sinning after we have received the knowledge of the truth, no sacrifice for sins is left, but only a fearful expectation of judgment and of raging fire that will consume the enemies of God." (Hebrews 10:26,27)
          I know you say you're not an avid bible reader. Please by all means get in the word and see what God is telling us.
          The world has a passive attitude towards sin. The sad thing is, much of this has to do with the image the churches have painted of God. They made Him appear as a passive God who is all about forgiving. Without a doubt God is Love and He is very forgiving. But He is also just and is not One to be tested. His Kingdom will be established on earth and like any Kingdom, His Kingdom will have laws that He wants us to follow.
          I am by no means judging you nor anyone else. I'm just sharing the message.

          • Reply by Meleti Vivlon on 2015-05-22 08:22:00

            Understanding that there are only two resurrections, one of righteous ones and one of unrighteous ones, leads us to a better, more understanding conclusion of the true extent of God's love. (Acts 24:15)
            Inheriting the kingdom refers to attaining to the heavenly hope, the better resurrection. (Heb 11:35) If one practices the works of the flesh, then one cannot inherit the kingdom, meaning the heavenly hope, to rule with Christ. (Gal. 5:19-21) However, the rest still get an opportunity to return to God's family as part of the resurrection of the unrighteous. They are the whole reason that Jesus has gathered humans to serve with him in the kingdom of the heavens. These will rule and cure, acting as kings to teach and enforce God's law and as priests to cure the nations. (Rev. 22:1, 2)
            So all who do not inherit the kingdom will return to a life on earth as part of the resurrection of the unrighteous.
            However, it appears from texts like 2 Thessalonians 1:6-10 that the only ones who do not get a part in the resurrection of the unrighteous are those who directly oppose the Christ. Still, judgment is in the hand of the Christ, so we cannot speak about anyone specifically.
            So today there are murderers, evil men (like the one who hung next to Christ), fornicators (of all varieties), liars, drunkards, and the like. In short, unrighteous men and women. If such ones continue to practice such things, they cannot expect to rule with Christ in the kingdom of the heavens. However, there does not appear to be any Bible basis that I have found to say that such ones will not return in the resurrection of the unrighteous.

            • Reply by Anonymous on 2016-12-24 05:29:54

              Hi Meleti!
              I really appreciate all the articles to clarify this point. I have a question about the failed Milllions will never die Campaign. What was that about? Is that why they started to shut up the Kingdom Heavens -1930-ongoing?

              • Reply by Meleti Vivlon on 2016-12-24 08:07:35

                Rutherford believed the end would come in 1925, so he believed that million then alive would never die because they would survive Armageddon.

        • Reply by kev on 2015-05-22 01:46:34

          Yes we know what gods word says about this And a whole host of other things as well . But my point is that we cannot judge the secret person of the heart . We just dont know why people do the things they do . We dont even know what they do . The fact is from what ive experienced many JWs say that they dont judge others but Why is it then that they cut people off even thier own children even those who have never even claimed to be a christian . 1 corinthians 5 v 9 and 10 . Is that really going to help i dont think so it could lead to suicide and has in many cases . Certainly we should try and uphold gods righteouness in our own lives . But shouldnt we have patience with others . We can live life by the law if we want . But i just want to live by the law of love and hope . James 2 v 8 and 2 v 12 and 13 . Yes mercy exhults over judgement . Kev .

        • Reply by Imgonaburn on 2015-05-22 07:12:38

          Thank you Kev,
          I was hoping you would understand where I'm coming from.
          It wouldn't make a scrap of difference to me if I were to become a fervent bible reader. I would still love my son and accept who and what he is. I question everything now. I see corruption in everything now. That's where I find myself after 30 years with the witnesses. It might sound like I'm bitter, but I'm not. I'm thankful for the protection belonging to that group of people afforded me. My life would undoubtedly have been a lot worse had I not made changes and become a JW.
          I don't consider myself to be without faith any more but I've lost the trust that I once had. I could read the scriptures that supposedly condemn my son but I don't accept them. If it feels wrong then I don't trust it. I live by the recommendation that all men are acceptable to God. Jesus condemned the Pharisees for shutting off the Kingdom of heaven so nothing will separate me and my gay son from Gods love. The bible says that liars and drunkards will not inherit the kingdom yet how many people do these things and still expect approval from God?? It's like the blood issue. That command has practically become null. How many parents nowadays stand by and watch their child die because of not having a transfusion? Most parents would consider such an act an obscenity. I feel the same way about my son. I refuse to expect him to sacrifice his life to appease the interpretation of rules. No doubt I will be looked down upon with pity or derision for daring to question the interpretation of scripture. Oh well, let him without sin cast the first stone. I refuse to lose my humanity and I'm not presumptuous enough to say who will and who will not find favour with Jehovah our God, the reader of hearts, regardless of what the bible does or does not say.
          People have no idea what it's like to walk in my shoes.
          I don't think that I will be coming back to read articles on here any longer. I find most information interesting but what's the point of straining out the gnats if we cannot show love ( and acceptance) towards people regardless of their race, gender, sexuality and religion. If we can't do this then we are missing the point imo.

        • Reply by MM on 2015-05-22 09:00:57

          Please excuse and forgive me if I offended you in any way my sister. I know no I'm not in your shoes so I can't fully relate to your situation. God forbid if I ever would judge anyone for their beliefs or way of life - for I myself am a sinner. I just have full confidence in the Word and was just sharing my views. I wish you well.

    • Reply by Jesusjeffrey on 2015-05-25 21:13:47

      Hi all. As a { fervent bible reader } I personal do not agree with the following quotes:
      { God forbid if I ever would judge anyone for their beliefs or way of life}
      { I’m influenced by the force of nature known as ‘a mothers love’. It’s irrational I know- I just can’t help it!}
      { surely Gods holy spirit help these ones as much as any of us}
      { A man who fornicates with a woman is the same as a man who fornicates with a man}
      Is this hard to understand, am I twisting it? Paul said:
      Eph 5: 11 Let no man deceive YOU with empty words, for because of the aforesaid things the wrath of God is coming upon the sons of disobedience. 7 Therefore do not become partakers with them; 8 for YOU were once darkness, but YOU are now light in connection with [the] Lord. Go on walking as children of light, 9 for the fruitage of the light consists of every sort of goodness and righteousness and truth. 10 Keep on making sure of what is acceptable to the Lord; 11 and quit sharing with [them] in the unfruitful works that belong to the _darkness_, but, rather, even be _reproving_ [them], 12 for the things that take place in secret by them it is _shameful_ even to relate.
      Let God be found true or perhaps He should learn how not to hate off the force of nature known as ‘a mothers love’.
      With all our spiritual welfare in mind. God is Love! JJ

      • Reply by Alex Rover on 2015-05-25 21:18:33

        thank you JJ

      • Reply by imacountrygirl2 on 2015-05-25 21:59:16

        JJ, perhaps you are missing our sister's point. It is possible to love our children, without loving the way they choose to live their lives.
        I agree with you that homosexuality is a sin, just as the Bible states.
        A mother's heart loves her children unconditionally. Well, some do. I know full well how agonizing it is for a parent's heart to be torn when their child does not embrace the life we wanted for them. We don't throw our children away or write them out of our lives. We do the only thing we can do. We continue to love and accept our children while continuing to love Jehovah and Jesus.....and pray, pray, pray. We leave the judging up to Jesus who can read their hearts.
        We cannot re-write the Bible to suit our own circumstances. We all know this and accept it. What we cannot accept is to judge and condemn our own children. Jehovah's Witnesses may be able to withhold their love from their children, but they are presuming to know more than Jesus does. It is not our job to judge, Jehovah has appointed Jesus for that.
        Can't we show some compassion and love to a mother or father who is doing the best that they can?
        If we search our hearts, we cannot cast the first stone, not on our sister, nor on her child. None of us is without sin. Life is difficult enough without adding to someone else's burdens and heartaches.
        I try and imitate Jesus quality of love, which covers over a multitude of sins.
        I wonder what Jesus would say to this mother?

        • Reply by Alex Rover on 2015-05-26 00:16:24

          The kingdom of heaven may not be for practicing homosexuals, but Jesus died for and truly loved all people.

        • Reply by Jesusjeffrey on 2015-05-26 00:40:10

          Hi Imacountrygirl2
          I haven't got any homosexual children. If I did I might look at it from a human fathers love. But that will not change what the bibles says. I can think and believe what I like.
          But I don't want Jesus saying to me “Why, then, do YOU call me ‘Lord! Lord!’ but do not do the things I say?" Luke 6:46
          You said: { It is possible to love our children, without loving the way they choose to live their lives.} Of course! But If your quoting Imgonaburn
          Who also said {nothing will separate me and my gay son from Gods love.}
          We,, You, I, have an obligation to help her understand the direr situation her son is in.
          You said: {A mother’s heart loves her children unconditionally.}
          Well that shouldn't be. You don't hate your child when you stop it from doing something that will hurt it and others. That's Love.
          Do we think we have more love than Jesus? I don't think that is possible. Yet his Love is conditional!
          You said: { It is not our job to judge, Jehovah has appointed Jesus for that.}
          Again that's true. Jesus has judged homosexuals and Holy Spirit has inspired Paul to inform us on Gods judgment on practicing homosexuals.
          You said: {Can’t we show some compassion and love to a mother or father who is doing the best that they can?}
          I don't judge this poor sisters or her son. I'm showing her love.
          Jude said (Also, continue showing mercy to some that have doubts
          (Imgonaburn); 23 save [them] by snatching [them] out of the fire. But continue showing mercy to others (Imgonaburn's son), doing so with fear, while YOU hate even the inner garment that has been stained by the flesh.)
          In ancient Israel Imgonaburn __would__ have to cast the first stone at her son. ( Please don't quote the spurious verse at the end of marks gospel)
          Believe Jesus, trust God and perhaps thing may turn around.
          You said: {I try and imitate Jesus quality of love, which covers over a multitude of sins.} Sadly many will find out that it does not cover practicing homosexuals male or female. married or not.
          With all due respect It amazes me that we have this conversation at all.But dont worry it will be banned by Gov decree soon as "hate speech"
          Again God is Love and does not desire any to be destroyed.
          Christian love. JJ

          • Reply by Alex Rover on 2015-05-26 00:50:10

            Perhaps this is a topic we can save for the forum should anyone feel its appropriate.
            About a parents love, let's not forget Hosea. Jehovah told him to marry a prostitute named Gomer so he could learn about Gods forgiveness.
            We cannot comprehend Gods love. At the same time we should hate what is bad and call it for what it is. But love hopes all things. And we hope all the best for others.

        • Reply by Jesusjeffrey on 2015-05-26 00:52:36

          I make clear I'm talking about PRACTISING homosexuals. Abstaining, practicing Christian homosexual may have a double portion of Jesus love if that is possible.
          He too was flesh for a time.
          Christian love. JJ

        • Reply by Jesusjeffrey on 2015-05-26 00:54:42

          Yes for the forum
          Christain Love.JJ

  • Comment by katrina on 2015-05-21 11:35:32

    should say heterosexuals addicted to sex and other things.

  • Comment by BN on 2015-05-21 13:45:05

    We have to remember that there is the firstborn and their covenant and the rest of us and the promise of the kingdom. Who God chose to invite to the last one is not our business. He choose to have merchy with whom He choose!
    Rev 10:7; 22:17
    The promise of the Kingdom will come when the new covenant is fulfilled; has produced a seed, like the old one did. The 'thousand years' is for that fulfillment, so it started in the first century. So the rest, is actually the Kingdom!
    It's a rest for the new mankind!

  • Comment by Skye on 2015-05-21 13:59:22

    MM, Admittedly the change from the Old Covenant Torah in the letter to the spiritual New Covenant in the Messiah was such a huge thing, that it was necessary for whole books largely dealing with this subject to be written - Romans, Galatians, Hebrews.

  • Comment by Wild Olive on 2015-05-21 23:29:09

    Throughly enjoyed this article thank you so much Alex for some truly new light.
    Also enjoyed the comments on the law, has answered a lot of questions for me,although I could be in trouble according to MM as Ime about to start on this years salami makeing, we are going to make about 250 salamis around 270 kg of pork meat.If I end up in Gehenna I'll know why.

    • Reply by kev on 2015-05-22 01:59:32

      You never know wild olive perhaps you could qoute mark 7 v 18 and 19 as you go in . ........ ps is that your real name . Kev .

      • Reply by MM on 2015-05-22 08:51:36

        Was "thus declaring all foods clean" something Jesus said? Were those words in the original manuscripts? Were those words written by Mark or us it a redaction added by later translators?
        The truth is Jesus never ate unclean animals and he wouldn't advise others to do so. For going against the law would be sin and we know Jesus had no sin in Him. He had to be a perfect sacrifice for us all. If Jesus was not perfect, then we all are lost.
        Read the whole chapter of Mark 7. It clearly has nothing to do with eating unclean animals. But it is relating to the tradition of the Pharisees who went beyond the Law, enforcing their own doctrine.

        • Reply by kev on 2015-05-22 14:12:23

          Sorry but i never said jesus did eat pork .i dont believe he did actually . My comment was more along the lines of a tongue in cheek answer in fact . To wild olive an excuse you may say . Because when we read statements like there is nothing that enters into a man that can defile him and thus he declared all foods to be clean . In our bibles then im sure we can be excused for making 250 salamis from 275 kg of pork meat . Thanks kev ps i try to lighten up sometimes .

          • Reply by Meleti Vivlon on 2015-05-22 14:25:20

            Thank Kev,
            We can all do with a spot of humor from time to time.

        • Reply by menrov on 2015-05-23 11:59:54

          Sorry, the comment that Jesus did not eat anything which was considered ritually unclean is completely irrelevant. Jesus came to fulfil the law and as such he obeyed it. But when fulfilled, no longer was it a master over the believers. Peter was made aware of this change.

        • Reply by MM on 2015-05-23 15:12:18

          Are we to believe that our Father punished Israel for not wanting to love the Father by obeying the law of God, that He sent His Son to die for Israel so that they did not have to do the law of God? That would be rather awkward.
          You said: “Jesus came to fulfil the law and as such he obeyed it. But when fulfilled, no longer was it a master over the believers.”
          This statement clearly makes the mistake of not realizing that it is a blessing to keep a law of God. There are many places we could point to in the Bible just to prove this. Psalm 119 is a great start. Paul also teaches in Romans 8 that it’s the fleshly minded that think this way, but those who are spiritual love the law of God.
          Romans 8:7
          “because the mind set on the flesh is hostile toward God; for it does not subject itself to the law of God, for it is not even able to do so.”
          Matthew 5:17
          “Do not think that I came to destroy the law or the prophets. I did not come to destroy, but to fulfill.”
          Interpreting fulfill as meaning that the law is no longer applicable makes absolutely no sense in light of the next two verses in, which it is stated nothing will change until heaven and earth disappear. Then, Jesus even goes on listing consequences if anyone practices and teaches even the least of the commandments are no longer applicable.
          Matthew 5:18-19
          "For assuredly, I say to you, till heaven and earth pass away, one jot or one tittle will by no means pass from the law till all is fulfilled. Whoever, therefore, breaks one of the least of these commandments, and teaches men so, shall be called least in the kingdom of heaven; but whoever does and teaches them, he shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven."
          So, if we choose for the word “fulfill” in verse 17 to mean that the whole law of God is no longer going to be applicable to believers, here’s what we have Jesus saying:
          In verse 17, “I come not to destroy the law but to make it no longer applicable.”
          Verse 18, “but until heaven and earth pass, every jot or tittle of the law still stands.”
          Verse 19, “Even though the law of God is no longer going to be applicable as stated in verse 17,anyone teaching that the whole law of God is no longer applicable will be least in the kingdom.”
          That definition of fulfill in verse 17 just doesn’t seem to work in any way possible. This means that “fulfilled” in Matthew 5:17, the Greek word “pleroo,” must mean to fully preach or fully teach the law of God and cannot teach that any part of the law of God is no longer applicable because it would then render verses 18 and 19 as irrelevant.

          • Reply by menrov on 2015-05-23 15:53:22

            I respect you have a different view. i stick to my original arguments though.

      • Reply by MM on 2015-05-23 17:31:33

        I respect your views to my brother. But we should always test our beliefs with the WHOLE Word, and adapt accordingly. Shalom

    • Reply by MM on 2015-05-22 14:46:35

      Yea lol. I'm sorry that one went over my head. Maybe I need to loosen up a bit. The pressure I'm getting from my wife and the elders got me a lil uptight.

  • Comment by Skye on 2015-05-22 06:51:56

    The Bible was written for ordinary folk to understand. If we think that the words do not mean what they say, then anyone can make them mean whatever "they" want them to say.

    • Reply by MM on 2015-05-22 07:52:24

      Exactly. The bible was written by Hebrew men who knew and understood Hebrew culture. The bible is written for all men but in order to grasp its full meaning and the message God is trying to relay to us, we must read it in the Hebrew context in which it was written.
      I'm from the south and if I used southern terms that I'm accustomed to, there's a chance that you may misunderstand me. But if you put my words in their context, it'll be easier to grasp what I'm saying.
      If everyone read the bible for what it says in its proper context, there wouldn't be over 40,000 christian denominations.

      • Reply by Meleti Vivlon on 2015-05-22 08:03:55

        Hi MM,
        I agree with you that understanding Hebrew culture will help us to better understand the Bible, particularly those parts that predate Christianity. However, I think that to suggest that the reason we have so many different versions of Christianity is due to misunderstanding the text overlooks the fact that our sinful state with all its vices, pride, avarice, etc. is what is really behind the confusion. Jehovah inspired the Bible to be easy to misinterpret. Jesus spoke in illustrations so as to hide the truth from unworthy ones.
        The problem with imperfect human nature is that for the most part we only believe what we want to believe despite overwhelming evidence to the contrary.

        • Reply by MM on 2015-05-22 08:18:42

          Very true.
          And the most important "ingredient" we can have when reading the scriptures is Holy Spirit. God's Spirit is the guide that we must follow, without it we will never grasp the true essence of His Word

        • Reply by MM on 2015-05-22 08:29:54

          But it's very important to understand the front of the book. If we don't understand the Hebrew scriptures, there's a great chance we will misunderstand the "new" testament writings. After all, 50% of the "new" testament writings are quotes from the "old" testament.

      • Reply by Skye on 2015-05-22 08:57:02

        MM, I agree that it is necessary to understand Biblical culture in order grasp the meaning of difficult scriptures. However, please be clear, that the comment I made earlier, "the Bible was written for ordinary folk ......." was absolutely in no way intended to mean that I agree with your understanding of the Law today, because I do not.
        I must say though, that I did enjoy your comments of God's prophetic calendar, "the feasts of the Lord" to be very interesting. It is a subject that I have been meaning to research for a while, and so your comments were indeed very helpful, thank you.

        • Reply by MM on 2015-05-22 09:26:11

          I understand. As I stated before even if you don't agree with me, it's definitely something to look into. Remember to always test everything with scripture before accepting it as truth or writing it off as false.
          The problem is all christian denominations sprout from the Catholic Church. In some way or form, every christian denomination shares a teaching that the Catholic Church founded as truth years ago. A couple of these teachings are: God rejected Israel, and God ended the Law. It would do much good to at least scrutinize these teachings with scripture and see what's the basis and origin of such beliefs.

      • Reply by menrov on 2015-05-23 12:02:14

        Again MM, I absolutely disagree. None of the people tat Jesus cured or even promised the future paradise to were complete aware of Jesus message. The one thing that realy was valid was their faith in HIm. Not their knowledge or the lack of it.

        • Reply by MM on 2015-05-23 15:01:03

          Salvation comes first, then obedience. Just like the Exodus from Egypt. Obeying the Law is the fruit of our salvation, not the root of our salvation. Any gentile coming into the faith was always intended to adopt the same Law as the natural born Israelite. There is no difference between an Israelite and a gentile in the faith. (Col. 3:11) It’s all about coming to the Messiah, our need for a Savior, and growing from there. We are all at different levels in our walk. Yet, it’s our faith that is the level ground for all of us.

  • Comment by BN on 2015-05-22 14:31:02

    But we do not need to understand every bit of it, because when the mystery of God is fulfilled THEN everything will be understandable through the Anointed One and His bride. What we NEED TO is LOVE God and our neighbor!
    Everybody will not be able to understand, because we have to be granted understanding. The Bible is written the way it is written because God and the Son wanted to see who would really dig for the truths, specially those in covenants.(Isn't the Scriptures realy for those nations?) When it was the physical nation of Israel, what about rest of the world? Anybody who really think Paul preached in the whole world? It's about the household of God: the physical Israel, the spiritual Israel and THEN all others who stands .....
    Even today there is people who can' t read and-or is not capable of grasping it, but they can love their neighbor. JW talk about knowing God, but who says that someone living in nature without any knowledge about the bible doesn't know God? It's not about bible knowledge, it's about doing what's right by everyone ..
    It's about merchy, rightousness, emphaty, LOVE!
    It's so easy and yet so difficult!
    It was and is the priests responsibility to teach and preach, but as we all know: What the heart is filled with, the mouth speaks of.

    • Reply by MM on 2015-05-22 14:52:47

      I couldn't agree more

  • Comment by BN on 2015-05-22 14:44:26

    I forgot to put in that there is one thing we can' t be part of, and that's idolatry! So for me it's like everything is turned upside down. I thought as a witness I had 'peace and security' like I was told, but as christians we must open our eyes and take a good look inside our hearts and see who we really worship ... WHO DO WE TRUST AND PUT OUR FAITH IN? ..

    • Reply by MM on 2015-05-22 14:55:45

      It's a blessing to see God opening the eyes of so many believers. Man confuses us with their doctrine, traditions and pride. So many are coming out of the darkness and growing in spirit, truth and light!

      • Reply by Skye on 2015-05-22 15:40:03

        Yes, love is important, because without love truth is nothing, but then without truth (love of truth) there is no salvation. 2 Thess 2:10 "and all the ways that wickedness deceives those who are perishing. They perish because they refused to love the truth and so be saved." We are required to have a passion for the truth - our salvation depends upon it.
        Therefore truth and love are inseparable.
        2 Thess 2:12 "and so all will be condemned who have not believed the truth but have delighted in wickedness." Not to love that truth is the equivalent of wickedness.

  • Comment by QC on 2015-05-22 15:01:59

    Hi MM,
    Isn’t it great in the spirit of the Beroeans that we have a forum to discuss spiritual matters freely?
    Expressing Christian convictions is spiritually very therapeutic.
    You say: “The feasts of the Lord are prophetic rehearsals of the first and second coming of Christ….It’s very important to understand the front of the book.”
    Yes, I agree.
    I have come to appreciate that the entire OT with its feast rituals, traditions and ordinances are symbols reminding us of something far greater. They symbolize the various heavenly or spiritual concepts and values written embedded in the hearts of the New Covenant Christian
    —e.g. continual sacrifices (salvation of Christ), continual sabbaths (rest from Adamic sin abuse, and rest from creation [planet] abuse, white linen (Christian spiritual and moral purity as “sons of God”), tabernacle (God’s omnipresence spiritual temple estate that extends from heaven to all faithful Christians on earth), “promise land” (paradise earth under Christ’s kingdom rule), circumcision (pure hearts filled with love of spiritual truth; not driven by fleshly or worldly influences), atonement (human reconciliation with God), etc., just naming a few
    —symbols which allow Christians to be taught how to be "born anew" in the image of Jesus sharing his worldview.
    Jesus lived under Law in order to fulfill it, so that “a new covenant with the house of Israel” (Spiritual Israel) is established. (Jer. 31:31)
    So the Law is a map for tutoring and guiding us through heavenly things about Christ and the importance of being his “sons of God” disciples.
    Gal 3:
    24 Therefore the Law has become our tutor to lead us to Christ, so that we may be justified by faith.
    25 But now that faith has come, we are NO LONGER under a tutor.
    26 For you are all sons of God through faith in Christ Jesus.
    He 8:
    5 [Law gifts] serve as a copy and shadow of the heavenly things, as Moses was warned when he was about to complete the tabernacle. For God said, Be careful that you make everything according to the pattern that was shown to you on the mountain.
    13 In speaking of a new covenant, he makes the first one OBSOLETE. And what is becoming obsolete and growing old is ready to VANISH away.
    Col 2:
    16 let no one pass judgment on you in questions of food and drink, or with regard to a festival or a new moon or a Sabbath
    17 These are a SHADOW of the things to come, but the substance belongs to Christ.
    Heb 10:
    1 The law is only a shadow of the good things that are coming—NOT the REALITIES themselves.
    I agree Catholicism is problematic in many ways. And, I do think that the Adventist wing of Christianity, which broke from much of Catholicism and Protestantism traditions, has a silver-lining. It seems more inclined toward a Beroean spirit, “searched the scriptures daily, whether those things were so.” Russell, though flawed, pioneered that spirit. Can't say that about modern-day JWs.

    • Reply by MM on 2015-05-22 16:38:41

      Thanks for that.
      I once had the same understanding brother. I was raised believing the law ended just as I was raised believing Jesus' second coming already happened in 1914. I urge you to test this teaching.
      When it comes to Galatians, many refer to the "tutor" found in chapter 3. We must remember that the context of Galatians is that they were trying to be saved BY the law.
      Galatians 5:4 "You who are trying to be justified by law have been alienated from Christ; you have fallen away from grace."
      The law was never designed to save anyone. Never. It was designed for instruction, not salvation. In fact, Torah (the law) actually means instructions. They came after the Passover lamb was slain. So first came salvation, then instruction. ... The context in Galatians 3 is all about the curse of the law being done away with as mentioned in verse 13.
      Galatians 3:13 "Christ redeemed us from the curse of the law by becoming a curse for us, for it is written: “Cursed is everyone who is hung on a tree.”
      When Paul stated here "the curse of the law", he is actually referencing the law of sin and death as he mentioned in Romans 8.
      Romans 8:2 "because through Christ Jesus the law of the Spirit of life set me free from the law of sin and death."
      And this is the law he is referencing in Galatians 3:19.
      Galatians 3:19 "Why the Law then? It was added because of transgressions, having been ordained through angels by the agency of a mediator, until the seed should come to whom the promise had been made."
      A tutor teaches something right? When you are done with the tutor, do you throw the school books out too? The tutor was the curse of the law. The law of sin and death. It pointed to our need for Christ. Let's look at verse 19 again ...
      Galatians 3:19 "Why the Law then? It was added because of transgressions, having been ordained through angels by the agency of a mediator, until the seed should come to whom the promise had been made."
      He says ..."Why the law then?" What law is he talking about? Many assume he is referring to the law of Moses here. But as you will see, he is talking about the curse of the law which, again, is the topic as mentioned in verse 13. Paul also refers to the curse of the law as a law in Romans 7.
      Romans 7:22-23 "For in my inner being I delight in God’s law; but I see another law at work in the members of my body, waging war against the law of my mind and making me a prisoner of the law of sin at work within my members."
      It is this law that he calls the curse when he says "It was added because of transgressions..." in verse 19. The Greek word for transgression is "parabaseon". It simply means "disobedience". So this law was added because of disobedience. Disobedience to what? ... the law (of Moses) . You can't have disobedience if you have no law. Thus the curse of the law (the tutor) came because of disobedience to the law (of Moses). So it is the curse of the law, as mentioned in verse 13, that we are no longer under as mentioned in verse 25.
      Galatians 3:25 " But now that faith has come, we are no longer under a tutor."
      The tutor came after the law as a result of our disobedience to the law. The focus of tutor was to poin t us to Christ who would deliver us from it. Remember, Christ IS the. Word. The law, Torah, is a part of the Word. He didn't come to do away with part of Himself. He came to do away with our disobedience.
      Compare the following verse. Then look at the same verse with the biblical definitions applied. ...
      Romans 6:14-15 "For sin shall not be your master, because you are not under law, but under grace. What then? Shall we sin because we are not under law but under grace? By no means!"
      Romans 6:14-15 "For sin (breaking the law - 1 john 3:4) shall not be your master , because you are not under law (the curse), but under grace. What then? Shall we sin (break the law) because we are not under law (the curse) but under grace? By no means!"
      He's saying "just because you are not under the penalty for breaking the law, should you abuse the gift of grace and break the law anyway? By no means! Paul uses the word "law" for more than just the law of Moses. He uses it also in referencing the law of sin and death and even that which later became known as the Talmud. It definitely makes it difficult when looking at his writings from a Greek perspective.
      But allow me to remind us once again of the warning Peter gave concerning Paul's writings ...
      2 Peter 3:15-17 "Bear in mind that our Lord’s patience means salvation, just as our dear brother Paul also wrote you with the wisdom that God gave him. He writes the same way in all his letters, speaking in them of these matters. His letters contain some things that are hard to understand, which ignorant and unstable people distort, as they do the other Scriptures, to their own destruction. Therefore, dear friends, since you already know this, be on your guard so that you may not be carried away by the error of lawless men and fall from your secure position."

      • Reply by MM on 2015-05-22 16:40:46

        Sorry for the extremely long comment lol. But please read.

        • Reply by Skye on 2015-05-23 05:27:14

          It is not difficult to study the Bible. Biblical statements must be treated as language designed to be understood. Paul meant what he actually said: Don't go back under the Law. If you do you will be cut off from Christ, "severed from Christ" (Gal 5:4).
          It is up to each one of us to listen intelligently and carefully to God's Word and find rest in easy truths.

        • Reply by MM on 2015-05-23 09:19:39

          I agree we are not under law. We are under grace. Law cannot save us, only God's mercy can.
          This is the point of many of Paul's writings.
          But just because we have grace, do we sin (break God's laws)?
          Every kingdom or government has laws. God's Kingdom has laws. If we love God we do our best to follow them. But when we do sin, we have the grace of God to cover our transgressions.
          Murder, theft, and fornication are still sins just as coveting, eating unclean animals, and the desecration God's sabbath are still sins. His law didn't end - they are still His standards, which anyone who puts faith in Him and His Son will strive to follow out of love.
          If we believe the law ended, we have to throw out sooo many scriptures.
          Read Psalm 119 - the whole thing.
          Read the prophets.
          The very reason Israel was punished and scattered throughout the land is because of their disobedience - they abandoned God's laws. And now we're saying that since they were unfaithful he did away with His Law?
          That's like a parent telling their child to do something. The child refuses to listen. The parent punishes him. But after awhile the parent says "You know what, what I told my child to do is a little unreasonable, let me take it back."
          We're talking about God here. The all-knowing, wise creator. The laws He gave were no burden. It's just that the people had a heart of stone. Which is the whole purpose if the new covenant.
          Jeremiah 31:31-34
          “Behold, the days are coming, declares the Lord, when I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel and the house of Judah, not like the covenant that I made with their fathers on the day when I took them by the hand to bring them out of the land of Egypt, my covenant that they broke, though I was their husband, declares the Lord. For this is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, declares the Lord: I will put my LAW within them, and I will write it on their hearts. And I will be their God, and they shall be my people. 34 And no longer shall each one teach his neighbor and each his brother, saying, ‘Know the Lord,’ for they shall all know me, from the least of them to the greatest, declares the Lord. For I will forgive their iniquity, and I will remember their sin no more.”
          He goes on to say in verse 37:
          Thus says the Lord:
          “If the heavens above can be measured,
              and the foundations of the earth below can be explored,
          then I will cast off all the offspring of Israel
              for all that they have done,
          declares the Lord.”
          He didn't reject Israel and he didn't abolish His laws. Go back to the Hebrew roots and study the scriptures.
          It's not hard to understand once we put it in proper context. We make it hard to understand because of our modern understanding, the misunderstanding of Paul, and the translation of the 'new' testament.

          • Reply by Meleti Vivlon on 2015-05-23 10:39:26

            We haven't abandoned the law, but we have abandoned the law code. We are putting our new wine in new wineskins. (Mt 9:17)
            Our law is the law of love. We don't need a specific law prohibiting fornication, murder, lying, slander, drunkenness, or any of the other works of the flesh. If we go with a law code, we open ourselves up to loopholes. However, in love's perfect law, there can be no loopholes for evildoers to shoot through.
            Jesus fulfilled the law code and in so doing replaced it with something better.

        • Reply by MM on 2015-05-23 11:07:27

          If that is truly the case. Then what "commandments" are John talking about in 1 John 5:3?
          And really love is what the law was always about. Love for neighbor and love for God is the basis for every single Law.
          Matthew 22:36-40:
          “Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the Law?”
          Jesus replied: “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.”

      • Reply by Anonymous on 2016-12-24 05:19:20

        Awesome Discussion!
        This is very Important for me to know....
        Will the Jews accuse the Jesus' disciples of breaking the Torah to bury him on the Sabbath? Or will they discredit John as a phony saying that this couldn't possibly happen on the Sabbath?
        There were Pharisees that put Faith in Jesus and obviously helped Jesus' family undercover. After Jesus was raised What happened to them after the warrant was sent out for the arrest of the disciples?
        What is the Jews' side of the story about Jesus' resurrection?

        • Reply by Meleti Vivlon on 2016-12-24 08:08:25

          Actually, they killed the two evildoers and made sure Jesus was already dead before the beginning of the Sabbath so that they could bury them prior to the start of it.

          • Reply by Anonymous on 2017-02-15 06:54:10

            Thanks for the clarification Meleti :)

  • Comment by Wild Olive on 2015-05-23 00:38:49

    @Kev, my internet name is wild olive,I chose it because it describes where I want to be( Rom11:17&18) and I can be anonymous.Ime still in the org but I no longer think of myself as a JW, that's a name Jo Rutherford chose, not Jehovah.
    I can't see myself staying in,the bluff and baffle of the GB has reached an all time high with the recent request for more donations.I just can't afford them anymore! Lol

    • Reply by kev on 2015-05-23 04:03:18

      Thanks for your reply wild olive . I hope you are doing fine . . If the trend continues acts 4 v 34 and 35 could be the next scriptural commandment . perhaps with a slight tweek the pink floyd song ( money ) could be made into a new kingdom melody . That the brothers could sing every week to remind them of thier pledges and obligations . Ha ha . thats sarcasm for you . seriously though its no fun is it . If we are going to give it should always be to those in need . Im shocked the way the religions going it seems to be a different one than the one i joined years ago . . Kev

  • Comment by bobcat3 on 2015-05-23 08:51:30

    One of the curious things about the 7th trumpet (to me) in relation to what the WT Society teaches about is their timing: Rev 9:12 places the 6th and 7th trumpet (also called the 2nd and 3rd woe) after the 5th trumpet (also called the 1st woe). Then Rev 11:14 places the 7th trumpet (the 3rd woe) after the 6th trumpet (the 2nd woe).
    Yet, somehow, the WT places the 5th and 6th trumpets during the post-1914 last days, but the 7th trumpet occurs in Oct, 1914 at the end of their "7 times."
    On a different note, the 7th trumpet parallels the 7th bowl of God's anger: The 7th trumpet occurs with, "flashes of lightning and voices and thunders and an earthquake and a great hail" (Rev 11:19).
    Similarly, the 7th bowl of anger occurs with, "lightnings and voices and thunders occurred, and a great earthquake occurred . . . And a great hail with every stone about the weight of a talent descended out of heaven upon the men, and the men blasphemed God due to the plague of hail, because the plague of it was unusually great (Rev 16:17-21).
    This appears to mark the 7th trumpet and bowl as referring to the same events.
    What do you think is the significance of "the temple [sanctuary] of God that is in heaven was opened, and the ark of his covenant was seen in his temple [sanctuary]" (Rev 11:19)?.

  • Comment by menrov on 2015-05-23 12:15:02

    MM Said: If that is truly the case. Then what “commandments” are John talking about in 1 John 5:3?
    What about the commandment love you brother (John 13:35). What about the commandment to honor Jesus as yor would honor the Father? (John 5:23)
    all these commandments have to do with behavior, acts out of love, no longer because it is written. Yes, written on the heart,
    Therefore these commandment do not weigh us down, in contrast with the written law. It is the Law of Christ, based on love.
    I apologize but I get somehow very concerned when I read about the Mosaic law and somehow it is claimed that the Law still has relevance. to Christians.
    The only relevance is that it made us (believers) aware of sin, and that only love could fulfil the law. Hence the Law of Christ, which is purely based on love without any written rules or regulations.

    • Reply by MM on 2015-05-23 14:57:11

      Many say that Christ was giving His disciples a new command instead of simply expounding on an existing command for the first time when He said,
      John 13:34-35
      “A new command I give you. Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. By this all men will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.” “As I have loved you, so you must love one another.”
      This is where Christ expounds on His example of what He called the second greatest command.[See Matthew 22:37-39.]
      Leviticus 19:18
      “Do not seek revenge or bear a grudge against one of your people, but love your neighbor as yourself. I am the LORD”
      If we say that Christ was giving a new command then we are making Him to be a sinner because that means He was adding to the word of God. For the word says,
      Deuteronomy 4:2
      “Do not add to what I command you and do not subtract from it, but keep the commands of the LORD your God that I give you.”
      So, is your Christ a sinner?
      Just a thought.

      • Reply by menrov on 2015-05-23 15:07:13

        Jesus did and taught all His Father told Him to teach or do. On His baptism His Father said He is my Son, listen to Him. As such, if Jesus said He gives a new command, He did this with support of Hi. Father. Jesus was withiut sin. And yes if Jesus said it was new, it must have been new otherwisw Jesus would be a liar. And we all know He was without sins.

  • Comment by MM on 2015-05-23 15:21:15

    According to Leviticus 19:18 it wasn't a "new" commandment. Jesus didn't teach anything contrary to the Law or the Prophets.
    According to God’s Word, God never does anything without revealing it to His prophets beforehand
    For the Sovereign Lord Jehovah will not do a thing Unless he has revealed his confidential matter to his servants the prophets.
    (Amos 3:7)
    The prophets spoke about a coming Messiah. The prophets spoke about a new heaven and earth. The prophets spoke about a scattering and regathering of the house of Judah and the house of Israel.
    But NOWHERE will we ever find the prophets speak about the Law of God being done away with.

    • Reply by Skye on 2015-05-23 18:56:28

      The idea of a Messianic figure whose authoritative word exceeds that of Moses is found in the Law itself. Moses warned Israel, "The LORD your God will raise up for you a prophet like me from among you, from your fellow Israelites. You must listen to him." Deut 18:15 "I myself will call to account anyone who does not listen to my words that the prophet speaks in my name." Deut 18:19
      Acts 3:22-23 "For Moses said, 'The Lord your God will raise up for you a prophet like me from among your own people; you must listen to everything he tells you. Anyone that does not listen to him will be completely cut off from their people.'

      • Reply by MM on 2015-05-23 20:30:38

        According to Deuteronomy 13 the ppl of Israel were given the blueprint of who they should follow. Here we are believing that Jesus came and ended the Torah of God. And we're teaching it to others! No wonder it's so hard for Jewish ppl to believe in Jesus as Messiah. There's a false report about Him that's existed since the first century.

  • Comment by kev on 2015-05-24 02:44:23

    1 john 5 v 3 for this is what the love of god means that we observe his commandments yet they are not burdensome . what commandments are we speaking of here . Notice chapter 3 v22 and 23 whatever we ask we recieve from him because we are observing his commandments ans are doing the things pleasing in his eyes indeed this is the commandment that we have faith in the name of his son jesus christ and be loving one another . . It was not burdensome because it should not be difficult to love our bothers and have faith in christ . At acts 15 this issue was discussed verse 5 notice that some of the sect of the pharisees rose up from the seats and said it is necessary to circumcise them and charge them to observe the law of moses . Notice at verse 10 and 11 the law was described as a yoke that people were not capable of bearing . And said on the contrary we get saved through grace . . What conclusion did the holy spirit and the disciples come to . It was this v 28 and 29 that no further burden was added to the gentile believers apart from as we know Food sacrificed to idols . Blood ..things strangled and fornication .. . Perhaps im wrong again but they seem pretty clear statements to me .. kev

  • Comment by Vox Ratio on 2015-05-24 08:40:24

    Hi MM,
    I admire your zeal and the conviction of your claims. Yet, since one can neither know your character, nor your presence here, it is only possible to examine your speech. This speech, however, seems to be similar in form to that of the early Judaizers. As you know, this type of speech led the first congregations into confusion, and it is this type of confusion that ensnared even such church luminaries as Peter and Barnabas (Gal.2:13). Moreover, it is also this type of confusion that is referred to by the Jerusalem council as “trouble with speeches”, resulting in the subversion of faith of some (cf. Ac. 15:25).
    As to the speech of the Christ, however, we can note that his sermon concerning obedience to the law occurred early in his ministry and was directed to both his humble Jewish listeners as well as the legalistic and law-proud religious leaders. As a faithful Jew, we would expect Jesus to advocate adherence to the ceremonies and ordinances prescribed by the law – especially since his audience knew that they would be held accountable until all things took place (cf. Mt. 5:17-20). Indeed, just as it was written, all things did take place when Christ completed, or fulfilled, (PLHROW) the law. Moreover, just as it was said, heaven and earth did not pass away until (hEWS) “all came to pass” (vs. 18 HRB).
    As the law was but a shadow of that which was to come, we must not herald the call to unite again under a veil of shadows, but instead step out into the light (Rom 10:4; Col. 2:17; Jo. 8:12). We have a new covenant and a new commandment. We have a new birth and a new hope. We have a new mind and new life as a new creation. Even though the end of the law is found in the Christ, we can begin again with him as something new (2 Cor. 3:6, 5:17; Jo. 13:34; 1 Pet. 1:3; Eph. 4:23; Rom. 10:4). Therefore, let us not look behind at the old, but look ahead in faith toward the new.
    If your shoulders have chosen to bear the yoke of the law, then I wish you good will in the Lord. Nevertheless, we must never forget that he died for the weakest of our brothers and sisters also (cf. Mt. 25:40). For this reason, we must not coerce these ones to saddle themselves with the heavy burdens of the law code, but rather encourage them through the kindly yoke and the light load offered by Christ himself.
    These intrusions have forever dogged Christian history, and we would be better served letting sleeping dogs lie where they may. History is our witness. The future is our testimony.

    • Reply by Meleti Vivlon on 2015-05-24 09:37:38

      Well said!

      • Reply by MM on 2015-05-24 11:38:57

        Meleti, my brother,
        The passive attitude that many pastors have adopted is the reason for much of the wickedness in the world. The line between good and bad is rapidly disappearing. Why? God clearly let us know in His Word how we should strive to live. Yet, we're picking and choosing which ones we want to follow.
        Gay marriage is being accepted by many pastors and priests. Why? If you're not following all of God's Word, the error of lawlessness creeps in, and before long, you're lost, following your own rulebook. When the King returns, whose laws do you think we will have to follow, our own or His?
        Yes we have grace. But it's the law of the flesh that makes God's Torah appear as a burden.
        God's laws were never a burden. Paul called God's Torah "holy, righteous, and good."
        What does grace mean to you? Let's look at some "New" Testament scriptures and see what we come up with.
        1 Corinthians 5:1-5
        "It is actually reported that there is immorality among you, and immorality of such a kind as does not exist even among the Gentiles, that someone has his father’s wife. And you have become arrogant, and have not mourned instead, in order that the one who had done this deed might be removed from your midst. For I, on my part, though absent in body but present in spirit, have already judged him who has so committed this, as though I were present. In the name of our Lord Jesus, when you are assembled, and I with you in spirit, with the power of our Lord Jesus, I have decided to deliver such a one to Satan for the destruction of his flesh, that his spirit may be saved in the day of the Lord Jesus. Wow. Removed from their midst and even delivered over to Satan."
        Does that sound like grace to you? It must be, 'cause that's what they were under.'
        Acts 5:1-10
        "Now a man named Ananias, together with his wife Sapphira, also sold a piece of property. With his wife’s full knowledge he kept back part of the money for himself, but brought the rest and put it at the apostles’ feet. Then Peter said, “Ananias, how is it that Satan has so filled your heart that you have lied to the Holy Spirit and have kept for yourself some of the money you received for the land? Didn’t it belong to you before it was sold? And after it was sold, wasn’t the money at your disposal? What made you think of doing such a thing? You have not lied to men but to God.” When Ananias heard this, he fell down and died. And great fear seized all who heard what had happened. About three hours later his wife came in, not knowing what had happened. Peter asked her, “Tell me, is this the price you and Ananias got for the land?” “Yes,” she said, “that is the price." Peter said to her, “How could you agree to test the Spirit of the Lord? Look! The feet of the men who buried your husband are at the door, and they will carry you out also.” At that moment she fell down at his feet and died. Wow! Ananias and Sapphira lied to the church concerning the money of the sale of their property. Peter then said that they weren't lying to man but to the Holy Spirit. And then they were struck dead!"
        Does that sound like grace to you? It must be, 'cause that's what they we're under.
        James 5:9
        "Don’t grumble against each other, brothers, or you will be judged. The Judge is standing at the door!"
        "Don’t grumble against each other, or you will be judged"? Does that sound like grace to you? It must be, 'cause that's what we're under.
        Galatians 1:9
        "As we have already said, so now I say again: If anybody is preaching to you a gospel other than what you accepted, let him be eternally condemned!"
        Eternally condemned?!?! Does that sound like grace to you? It must be, 'cause that's what we're under.
        Heb. 10:26-31
        "If we deliberately keep on sinning after we have received the knowledge of the truth, no sacrifice for sins is left, but only a fearful expectation of judgment and of raging fire that will consume the enemies of God. Anyone who rejected the law of Moses died without mercy on the testimony of two or three witnesses. How much more severely do you think a man deserves to be punished who has trampled the Son of God under foot, who has treated as an unholy thing the blood of the covenant that sanctified him, and who has insulted the Spirit of grace? For we know him who said, “It is mine to avenge; I will repay,” and again, “The Lord will judge his people.” It is a dreadful thing to fall into the hands of the living God."
        Wow. Believers who are deliberately disobedient will be consumed with the enemies of God? Does that sound like grace to you? It must be, 'cause that's what we're under.
        What is grace? That's a big question. So better yet, what is grace not?
        Jude 4
        "For certain men whose condemnation was written about long ago have secretly slipped in among you. They are godless men, who change the grace of our God into a license for immorality and deny Jesus Christ our only Sovereign and Lord."
        Grace is NOT a license to sin; nor is it a license to overlook sin.
        Rom. 6:1-2 1
        "What shall we say, then? Shall we go on sinning so that grace may increase? By no means! We died to sin; how can we live in it any longer?"

    • Reply by MM on 2015-05-24 11:32:29

      Kev and Vox Ratio,
      Acts 15 is a chapter used by many as proof that God's Torah has ended. The debate is about whether the gentiles should be keeping the Law of Moses as a means of salvation, or be keeping the Law of Moses as a matter of obedience as a result of faith. (Acts 15:5) The debate is between one of these two choices. No one suggests anywhere in this debate that there is a 3rd option in which the law of Moses has been abolished in whole or in part. It’s simply not a part of the debate. Btw, what's the point being made in verse 21?
      The position of the group in verse 5 is understandable. This is a new situation to the Jews. Gentiles are now coming to the faith. They have to realize that gentiles were not born and raised in learning God’s ways. It simply takes time. It would be unrealistic, at best, to demand complete obedience to the Law of God overnight with a knowledge that is simply not there. Rather than put such unreasonable expectations on the newly converted gentiles, James offered a scriptural process in verses 20 and 21 to help them in learning God’s ways - His Law.
      We must remember that the gentiles are coming out of a culture rooted deep in pagan traditions - it’s all they’ve ever known. Their multiple gods, idols, idol worship which included temple prostitution and drinking blood all are historically known practices that would need to be addressed as brand new believers in the faith (Acts 15:20). This directive is straight out of the Law of Moses (Lev. 17:12-16; Duet. 32:17). Rather than suddenly overwhelm the new believers with all of the Law, it was the council’s recommendation that they start in dealing with the weightier sins first, that being idolatry, which Paul mentions in his letters as the same as worshiping demons. This is how it is with new converts today. Focus on the blatant and weightier sins first. Then, work on the rest as time goes on.
      The question remains: If the council’s decision on the debate was that of verse 5, then what was the council’s plan to help the new converts move toward obedience to the Law of Moses? This leads to verse 21. They were to learn and grow in hearing the Law as given through Moses every sabbath. This is where we all grow. Just as Jesus commanded we are to observe and do what is taught out of Moses’ seat, the Law of Moses (Matt. 23:1-3) and teach all nations to do (Matt. 28:19-20) and this is how it works with us today. We remove the weightier sins from our lives first and we pick up the rest in our walk through continual study of God’s Word. Nobody can deal with all of their sins overnight. In fact, it is an ongoing process throughout all of one’s life, where we constantly strive to learn so we can go and sin no more. What other purpose can we conclude that James intended in making such a statement in verse 21? There is none.
      Some have read Acts 15 and concluded that all, or at least part, of the Law of Moses has been abolished. Especially that of circumcision since it was the circumcision group that was proven wrong. However, this is simply not the case. The only thing proven in the meeting in Jerusalem was that circumcision and following the Law cannot save you. We should be careful to not add or subtract from God’s commandments (Duet. 12:32) and we should be careful not to accuse those in the Jerusalem council of doing so either. Especially when they cite the reading of Moses every Sabbath as part of the solution for the converted gentiles.
      Something that is often overlooked is the following chapter after this decision was made. While Paul was on his journey to deliver the decision of the council to the congregations, he meets Timothy (Acts 16:1-5). The problem we have here is that if the message from the council was that the Law, or even just circumcision is no longer something to be concerned with, then why did Paul circumcise Timothy? This would have been hypocritical by Paul and done behind the backs of the elders in Jerusalem. In fact, they had decided it was no longer a concern. Yet, the council clearly displayed that the law was to be learned and followed by the new believers as instructed by Jesus(Matt. 23:1-3; Matt. 28: 19-20). Though Timothy’s father was a Greek, it is clear that Paul knew he had been raised in the faith since birth (2Tim. 1:5). So it was obvious that Timothy was not new to the faith. Once the local Jews heard the decision from the council, they would’ve then questioned as to why Timothy had not yet been circumcised since he was not a new believer but was well known and spoken of highly (Acts 16:2). The local Jews could have and most likely would have rightfully spoke up and said “If these converted gentiles are to learn and grow in obedience to the Law, then why hasn’t your partner Timothy submitted after all these years?” Thus, following the decree in Acts 15, Timothy was convicted to be circumcised by Paul. After circumcision, they could then deliver the Acts 15 decree without being viewed as hypocrites.

      • Reply by kev on 2015-05-24 13:58:36


      • Reply by Vox Ratio on 2015-05-24 23:21:52

        The account concerning the relationship between the gentile converts and the law is closed off with the admonition to retain only four necessary things (Ac. 15:20). Any further requirements that might have been charged against the gentiles at a future date are conspicuously absent from Luke's narrative – especially given that he wrote up to the time of the first imprisonment of Paul (c. 61 CE). If the Spirit's decision to enact no further Mosaic burden upon the gentiles stands firm with the Jerusalem council, then it should stand firm with us as well. We simply have not been afforded any explicit Scriptural warrant to impose more of the law-code on others than what has already been enacted.
        I have considered each of your missives in depth and have studied the Scriptures that you have cited. You are clearly passionate about this issue, and believe sincerely in your attempts to guide others into a fuller truth. However, despite your candid appeals I remain staunchly unconvinced.
        The plain statements of Scripture should always serve as the fulcrum for leveraging a deeper study of God's word. It seems to me that your argument for furthering the decision of the Jerusalem council is based upon circumstantial evidence and an assumption of the law code's inherent fixity and sempiternal extension. Yet, such implicatures are not at all obvious and therefore should not be made to compel a Christian's faith. The moral law as relayed through Moses is subsumed under the law of the Christ, such that if anyone remains under the law of the Christ then they ipso facto abide by the Mosaic moral law as well.
        Ultimately, however, if the warning against the malignant spread of Jewish control stood fast until the closing of the canon in John's day, then it stands fast still today (cf. Rev. 2:9; 3:9).

        • Reply by imacountrygirl2 on 2015-05-26 00:24:45

          Alex, Thank you for your warm and encouraging comment. It's greatly appreciated.

        • Reply by eyeontorah on 2015-06-28 11:28:16

          Vox Ratio,
          We must remember that in the account in Acts 15 takes place at a time when the gentiles are coming out of a culture rooted deep in pagan traditions - it’s all they’ve ever known. Their multiple gods, idols, idol worship which included temple prostitution and drinking blood all are historically known practices that would need to be addressed as brand new believers in the faith (Acts 15:20). This directive is straight out of the Law of Moses (Lev. 17:12-16; Duet. 32:17). Rather than suddenly overwhelm the new believers with all of the Law, it was the council’s recommendation that they start in dealing with the weightier sins first, that being idolatry, which Paul mentions in his letters as the same as worshiping demons. This is how it is with new converts today. Focus on the blatant and weightier sins first. Then, work on the rest as time goes on.
          The question remains: If the council’s decision on the debate was that of verse 5, then what was the council’s plan to help the new converts move toward obedience to the Law of Moses? This leads to verse 21. They were to learn and grow in hearing the Law as given through Moses every sabbath. This is where we all grow. Just as Jesus commanded we are to observe and do what is taught out of Moses’ seat, the Law of Moses (Matt. 23:1-3) and teach all nations to do (Matt. 28:19-20) and this is how it works with us today. We remove the weightier sins from our lives first and we pick up the rest in our walk through continual study of God’s Word. Nobody can deal with all of their sins overnight. In fact, it is an ongoing process throughout all of one’s life, where we constantly strive to learn so we can go and sin no more. What other purpose can we conclude that James intended in making such a statement in verse 21? There is none.

  • Comment by OldWt on 2015-06-02 04:24:15

    Reblogged this on Old Wt and commented:
    An excellent article by Alex Rover, with insightful comments by MM and others.

  • Comment by imacountrygirl2 on 2015-06-28 00:54:33

    Well said, Vox Ratio. Well said! When I grow up, I want to speak as clearly as you do while maintaining a spirit of love and humility.

  • Comment by Shadows of Things to Come | Beroean Pickets on 2015-11-13 07:50:06

    […] festivals is Yom Teruah, also known as the Feast of Trumpets. I wrote an entire article on the Seventh Trumpet and the meaning of this feast, as it foreshadows the return of Messiah and Gathering of the […]

  • Comment by Yehorakam on 2016-04-27 10:52:31

    Hi Alex. As I read the article, I got goosebumps. It seems you and I have been affected by the same experience. My understanding of the scriptures did a 180 after one of Christ's brothers opened my mind to the timing of the first ressurrection, timed with the last trumpet (it was my "skeleton key" as well). As a result of accepting that out of love of Biblical truth and rejecting what the GB had taught, the spirit opened up my mind to understanding pretty well all of what you wrote in your article without help from any fellow human. It's nice to listen and learn from fellow Christians. Christ expects us to appreciate and listen to our brothers and sisters. I continue to learn from others. Yet, it is mind boggling when you are completely on your own and the spirit opens up your mind to the truth and teaches you directly. I spent close to 2 years in isolation without hardly any contact with any fellow Christians. That time was very precious to me as the holy spirit taught me. As I said, it is mind boggling because it is a great privilege to be taught by the spirit. It left me feeling completely unworthy of such a grand privilege. Then comes the feeling of how to repay Christ for his interest in me. Then, a joy to discover that Christ has also taught others the same thing throught the spirit, uniting us. What a testimony to Christ's way of doing things. We can arrive at very similar or the same conclusions completely independently from one another, find one another, and discover that we are united in the same line of thought, discovering a brotherhood that Christ has created, not man. What a contrast to the unity that organizations have created by forcing their members to accept a doctrine and expelling them if they disagree with the current understanding. Man creates a forced and enforced unity. Christ creates a unity slowly and voluntarily among people that sincerely love truth more than all else, people that may not be known to each other...and he does it by means of holy spirit. The unity he creates depends on the fact that we have mutual respect for the differing views as we show patience towards each other and ourselves as we each progress in spiritual maturity and the holy spirit corrects and teaches us. What a beautiful thing. This article has not taught me something new doctrinely, but it has given me one more solid example to deepen my appreciation that Christ can create unity of thought without an organization.

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