It Is Finished Audio

Thursday, September 14, 2023

Old Testament (OT) Law: Is it important?


[This is part of an assignment I had to do for class that I am sharing with you about Old Testament law. I pray that you will be blessed by what you read.]


 Block asserts that many evangelicals are not interested in preaching Old Testament (OT) law. The lack of interest comes from what Block calls myth conceptions of the Law, and he lists several reasons for this. First, he argues that many find the Old Testament law filled with ceremonial details considered tedious compared to Christ’s sacrifice (ritualistic myth). Second, Block also suggests that many evangelicals find the Old Testament law archaic and was only for the time it was written (historical myth).[1] Third, the Old Testament law is believed to lack an emphasis on love and tolerance, according to many evangelicals’ ideology (ethical myth), which conflicts with the teachings of Jesus. Fourth, the Old Testament laws were written differently from modern literature and are difficult to comprehend (literary myth). Fifth, Block states that there has been an indoctrination that the Old Testament law deems God as having a lack of understanding regarding modern issues.[2] Yet, is there any credibility to these arguments, or are they only myths?

            I believe an important question to ask ourselves is: “Why did the Lord give the law to begin with? The Apostle Paul gives an excellent explanation for this question. He wrote:

[“ What shall we say, then? Is the law sinful? Certainly not! Nevertheless, I would not have known what sin was had it not been for the law. For I would not have known what coveting really was if the law had not said, “You shall not covet.”  But sin, seizing the opportunity afforded by the commandment, produced in me every kind of coveting. For apart from the law, sin was dead. Once I was alive apart from the law; but when the commandment came, sin sprang to life and I died. I found that the very commandment that was intended to bring life actually brought death.  For sin, seizing the opportunity afforded by the commandment, deceived me, and through the commandment put me to death. So then, the law is holy, and the commandment is holy, righteous and good” (Romans 7:7-12).]

In verse 7 of this passage, Paul poses the question of something being wrong with the law. Then he answers his question by letting his audience and readers understand there was nothing wrong or flawed with the law. Furthermore, he states that he would have been clueless about sin if the law had not been given. So what is sin? In his book Systematic Theology, Wayne Grudem defines sin as failing to obey God’s moral law in one’s actions, frame of mind, or nature. Sin goes beyond what one does but includes one’s attitude towards the ordinances of God. It also includes our character or moral nature, which is the essence of our being.[3] We were born into sin and have a sinful nature, thus we needed God’s law to define sin.

In Willam Klein, Craig Blomberg, and Robert Hubbard Jr’s book, Introduction to Biblical Interpretation, they suggest the Old Testament law causes a challenge for modern Bible students because of misunderstanding its nature. When one thinks of the word law, concepts of legal codes, legalism, unbearable rules, and judgment often come to mind.[4] However, the authors assert the need for readers to understand that OT laws were viewed by the Israelite people individually and collectively as national policy. The laws were to teach the community how to live in the presence of a holy and righteous God. They also were to be seen as a guide, covenant foundation, and framework of moral instructions regarding their relationship with God and one another. They were not to be loathed as a technical judicial code.[5] Therefore, how and why is this important today?

According to Klein et al., the OT law acts as a timeless model of moral and spiritual principles given by God and was instrumental in Israel’s priestly ministry, leading to Christ as the light to the world. To disregard the OT laws would be to dismiss understanding the essence of Jesus and the meaning of being in His nature as Christians. Understanding the OT laws also means discovering timeless truths, such as not killing, stealing, or committing adultery, which goes beyond cultural translations and time (Exodus 20). Other laws, such as judges not taking bribes and ruling only by the evidence, witnesses not committing purgery, and being fair towards one another, are just a few of the timeless laws God had given to Israel that our society would benefit from still adhering to.[6] As we can see with a few of the laws mentioned above, our nation has gone to hell in a handbasket because many pastors fail to preach the truth about God’s laws due to their own distorted views of them. Therefore, such spiritual neglect has caused much of the church and the world to be as the music group ACDC wrote on the Highway to Hell or Bruce Springsting’s Dancing in the Dark, about to fall into the abyss.[7]

In the Christian community, it has often been understood that Christ was and is the best way to understand and interpret OT laws, with Jesus having set the precedent for this.[8] Jesus said: Do not think that I have come to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I have not come to abolish them but to fulfill them. For truly I tell you, until heaven and earth disappear, not the smallest letter, not the least stroke of a pen, will by any means disappear from the Law until everything is accomplished” (Matthew 5:17-18). Therefore, Jesus fulfilled the law, thus fulfilling the law meant bringing to completion all that the law was intended for and ultimately accomplished. This includes the various offerings, ceremonies, and sacrifices having been fulfilled in Jesus’ death. Klein et al. suggest that Jesus challenged the oral and written OT laws, such as those relating to the Sabbath, dietary restrictions, and did not participate in stoning the woman caught in adultery. Yet, He never broke any of them of the laws as they were God’s ordinances for His people, leading to Christ’s death, resurrection, and the Holy Spirit’s (Paraclete) outpouring on the Day of Pentecost, with completion upon Christ’s second coming. Therefore, all of the OT laws apply to Christians, but none of them is applicable apart from Christ, thus establishing a middle ground.[9]

[1] Daniel I. Block, The Gospel according to Moses: Theological and Ethical Reflections on the Book of Deuteronomy (Eugene: Wipf and Stock Publishers, 2012), 104-105.


[2] Ibid.


[3] Wayne A. Grudem, Systematic Theology: An Introduction to Biblical Doctrine (New York: HarperCollins, 1994), 490-491.

[4] William W. Klein, Craig L. Blomberg, and Jr. Robert L. Hubbard, Introduction to Biblical Interpretation (Grand Rapids: Zondervan Academic, 2017), 443.


[5] Ibid.


[6] Ibid.


[7] Brian K. Payne, "Becoming an Academic Administrator: Dancing in the Dark or Highway to Hell?," Journal of Criminal Justice Education 27, no. 2 (2016): 271-274, doi:10.1080/10511253.2015.1128705.


[8] Klein, Blomberg, and Robert L. Hubbard, Biblical Interpretation, 445.

[9] Ibid.

Wednesday, September 6, 2023

Spiritual Maturity Series pt 1




1.)             What does spiritual growth mean to me?

2.)             How would I describe my spiritual beliefs?

3.)             In what ways am I currently connected to God?

4.)             Who do I turn to for spiritual guidance?

5.)             In what ways am I called to grow spiritually?

6.)             Do I need to let go of anger or resentment related to the church or God?

7.)             Is there anything getting in the way of my spiritual growth?

8.)             What’s my concept of God?

9.)             How do I express my spirituality?

10.)          Am I living in accordance with my values and beliefs?

11.)          Do I have any unresolved anger, resentment, or bitterness issues?

12.)          Am I currently working to overcome them?

13.)          Do I forgive others easily or do I hold grudges?

14.)          What does love mean to you?

15.)          If you could change one thing about yourself, what would it be?

16.)          Do you pray? If so, what impact has it had in your life? If not, why not?

17.)          What challenges do you face in your spiritual life?

18.)          How has your spirituality changed over time? In what ways has it remained the same?

19.)          What distractions may be preventing you from focusing on God and your spiritual growth?

20.)          Would you say that you are living in spiritual alignment with God?