Truth Seeker
  The Way
 

The Way


Jesus names himself the ' way ' to God.
John 14:6, DRC, Jesus saith to him: I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No man cometh to the Father, but by me.
After his resurrection, he taught his apostles all they needed one final time while appearing in a physical body. (Acts 1:1-5)  Thereafter, he taught them from heaven as needed through the Paraclete poured out at Pentecost.

Christians recognize that the way's narration is a combination of Jesus' direct teachings and those of the apostles whose writings were assembled and now are contained for us in the Bible. Following this way only we come to God and his salvation through Christ.  (This subject has side issues that are left alone for this discussion - side issues such as, will non-Christians who are righteous survive Armageddon? such as, earth and heaven)

Focus: Dietary requirements.  Sub focus: the law

In focusing on the subject of dietary requirements, naturally the question as to why the question exists must be answered.  Here the answer becomes one of law. 

If the edicts that Christians follow stipulate that this is part of the way of Christ, then Christians must obey this way.   Let's examine what Jesus and others taught.

Some may argue that Jesus himself obeyed the Law Covenant to the letter, and though that is true, does that really mean anything for Christians?  Why?

The entire Law Covenant

If we must obey the Law Covenant to the letter, it is clear that all are in serious trouble and that God has caused this to be impossible.  How? Though it is possible to obey the law covenant in regard to circumcision, to holidays, to the Sabbath, it is no longer possible to carry out its requirements regarding animal sacrifices on special holidays!  There is simply no temple in which to do this.  God caused its destruction for this very purpose.  More important than the destruction of a physical edifice is the permanent destruction of the Jewish priesthood.  Without it, a rebuilt temple serves nothing.

What then do we read about the circumcision?

Galatians 5:2-6, DRC, Behold, I Paul tell you, that if you be circumcised, Christ shall profit you nothing. 3 And I testify again to every man circumcising himself, that he is a debtor to the whole law. 4 You are made void of Christ, you who are justified in the law: you are fallen from grace. 5 For we in spirit, by faith, wait for the hope of justice. 6 For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision availeth any thing, nor uncircumcision: but faith that worketh by charity. 7 You did run well, who hath hindered you, that you should not obey the truth? 8 This persuasion is not from him that calleth you. 9 A little leaven corrupteth the whole lump.
What does this tell us?  It tells us that since we are under no compulsion to be circumcised, but instead the opposite, that we must not become slaves to the Law of Works, the Law Covenant, through which people would live by doing its works.  As Paul says, Christ is the end of the law.
Rom 10:4,5, For the end of the law is Christ, unto justice to every one that believeth. 5 For Moses wrote, that the justice which is of the law, the man that shall do it, shall live by it.

What law are we to obey?

Gal 5:14 For all the law is fulfilled in one word: Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. ...16 I say then, walk in the spirit, and you shall not fulfil the lusts of the flesh. 
An identical teaching in unequal language comes from Christ.  Here we read, 
John 4:24 God is a spirit; and they that adore him, must adore him in spirit and in truth.
Also, remember what Jesus told the young man about the law.  (Matt 19:26-24)  Here Jesus confirmed that the Royal laws, love of God and neighbour as yourself, were his way.

According to Jesus, the following things defile man:
Matt 15:17-20,  Do you not understand, that whatsoever entereth into the mouth, goeth into the belly, and is cast out into the privy? 18 But the things which proceed out of the mouth, come forth from the heart, and those things defile a man. 19 For from the heart come forth evil thoughts, murders, adulteries, fornications, thefts, false testimonies, blasphemies. 20 These are the things that defile a man.
The scripture in which Jesus tells us that not one letter of the law shall perish is not discussed here.  However, here is a link to a discussion of that scripture: Jesus The ManThe Law and Jesus

The Message to Christians


In Acts we see what the body of apostles and elders confirmed as necessary for all Christians:
Acts 21:25, But as touching the Gentiles that believe, we have written, decreeing that they should only refrain themselves from that which has been offered to idols, and from blood, and from things strangles, and from fornication.

Acts 15:28-29 28 For the holy spirit and we ourselves have favored adding no further burden to YOU, except these necessary things, 29 to keep abstaining from things sacrificed to idols and from blood and from things strangled and from fornication. If YOU carefully keep yourselves from these things, YOU will prosper. Good health to YOU!"
What happened to the Law Covenant with its many decrees? 
Hebrews 8:13, ASV, In that he saith, A new covenant he hath made the first old. But that which is becoming old and waxeth aged is nigh unto vanishing away.
The covenant was nailed to the cross with Christ.  By Christ's death, a new covenant was empowered abolishing the old.  Through this new covenant for forgiveness of sins (Matt 26:28) and the baptism into it for forgiveness of sins (Acts 2:38), Christians have entered not into the old covenant made with fleshly Israel which is Hagar, but into the New Covenant, a spiritual Israel, living according to the spirit of the law.

It is fairly well known that Peter was given keys by Christ.  There were two or three such keys of understanding given through Peter.  Here Peter receives such a key, in actuality two keys simultaneously – the keys of uncleanliness and cleanliness.  The principle is that what God declares clean is purified by that word.  In this way, food previously unclean was declared clean, and gentiles previously unclean now became clean by the blood and covenant of Christ.
Acts 10:9-15, ASV,  Now on the morrow, as they were on their journey, and drew nigh unto the city, Peter went up upon the housetop to pray, about the sixth hour: 10 and he became hungry, and desired to eat: but while they made ready, he fell into a trance; 11 and he beholdeth the heaven opened, and a certain vessel descending, as it were a great sheet, let down by four corners upon the earth: 12 wherein were all manner of fourfooted beasts and creeping things of the earth and birds of the heaven. 13 And there came a voice to him, Rise, Peter; kill and eat. 14 But Peter said, Not so, Lord; for I have never eaten anything that is common and unclean. 15 And a voice came unto him again the second time, What God hath cleansed, make not thou common. 16 And this was done thrice: and straightway the vessel was received up into heaven.
Consequently, Paul spells this out later here in Colossians.  First we are told that the Law Covenant has been nailed to the cross and been destroyed.
Colossians 2:13-14, And you, being dead through your trespasses and the uncircumcision of your flesh, you, I say , did he make alive together with him, having forgiven us all our trespasses; 14 having blotted out the bond written in ordinances that was against us, which was contrary to us: and he hath taken it out of the way, nailing it to the cross;
Next we are told that by reason of the law covenants abolition, its festivals and requirements of Sabbath, food and drink is to be disregarded.
Colossians 2:16-17, Let no man therefore judge you in meat, or in drink, or in respect of a feast day or a new moon or a Sabbath day: 17 which are a shadow of the things to come; but the body is Christ’s
 

Conclusion

From the above, no single scripture settles the matter.  Instead, the whole spirit of Jesus, Paul, Peter and the apostles' teachings come to bear on the issue.  As usual, each person must decide in their own heart what they want to believe or do.  Each must answer for them self before the judgment seat of Christ.

It should be stated, as others have, that it is clear the Israelites were protected from a variety of health problems by sticking to a diet of clean foods.  If a Christian decides to follow this practice is neither wrong nor unwise; however, the question above is about law. 

Christians must realize that not all areas of the world permit living according to what is wise; also, many people are raised in a culture that relies heavily on eating ' unclean ' meat.  These people usually know how to prepare these meats sagaciously.  For them not to eat these kinds of meat if God permits it would be like cutting a finger off.

From the above, the apostolic decision was that Christians abstain from blood, meat of strangled animals, and meat of animals that have not been bled properly.  Perhaps we should concentrate on this as the primary goal since many so called Christians do eat blood pie, strangled chicken and fowl meat, etc.
 
  There have been 86409 visitors (188755 hits) on this HP!  
 
This website was created for free with Own-Free-Website.com. Would you also like to have your own website?
Sign up for free