Welcome guest, is this your first visit? Create Account now to join.
  • Login:

Welcome to the Online Debate Network.

If this is your first visit, be sure to check out the FAQ by clicking the link above. You may have to register before you can post: click the register link above to proceed.

Page 1 of 3 1 2 3 LastLast
Results 1 to 20 of 48
  1. #1
    ODN Community Regular

    Join Date
    Mar 2004
    Posts
    6,893
    Post Thanks / Like

    Old Testament Laws and Christianity

    How did Jesus change/complete old testement law?

    How do we know which laws are still valid and which no longer apply?
    I typically cite original research papers and reviews that are available only to a personal or institutional subscriptional. If you wish a PDF copy of the papers I cite, send me a request.

  2. #2
    ODN's Crotchety Old Man

    Join Date
    Mar 2004
    Location
    Location, Location
    Posts
    9,671
    Post Thanks / Like
    Depends on who you ask.

  3. #3
    ODN Community Regular

    Join Date
    Mar 2004
    Posts
    6,893
    Post Thanks / Like
    Ok, lets start with a specific example.

    Why is it permissible for me to eat "unclean foods?"
    I typically cite original research papers and reviews that are available only to a personal or institutional subscriptional. If you wish a PDF copy of the papers I cite, send me a request.

  4. #4
    Owner / Senior Admin

    Join Date
    Nov 2003
    Location
    San Diego, CA
    Posts
    19,394
    Post Thanks / Like
    Leviticus was a book written for the Israel Nation at the time. It was civil law. Civil law is like the speed limit being 55 on I-95. It is not a moral law, but a law for the country. Civil laws are applicable only to a specific group of people at a specific time. They are not meant to be practiced by Christians today.

    One example of civil law that we do not abide by is found in Deuteronomy.

    DT 23:12 “Designate a place outside the camp where you can go to relieve yourself. [13] As part of your equipment have something to dig with, and when you relieve yourself, dig a hole and cover up your excrement.”

    Moral laws usually apply to all people (Thou shalt not murder) in all places. Civil laws, never will.

    These are only a couple categories of law. There are also sacrificial, ceremonial, military, etc...

    What you are speaking of above, is a ceremonial law (which also does not apply to us Christians today). Laws change with the times. This is true in any legal system in any country of laws. The Laws of Israel are no different.

    Also, Jesus created a new covenant with Christians, that supersedes that of the Laws of Moses.

    An illustration: The area we now call the United States was once ruled by Britain, then it was under the Articles of Confederation, and now we are under the Constitution. Likewise God provided for man first the patriarchal rule, then the laws at Sinai, and now the gospel or New Testament. We are no more subject to the Old Testament laws than we are to the Articles of Confederation.

    See:
    Hebrews chapters 7-10
    2 Corinthians 3:6-11
    Galatians chapters 3-5
    Romans 7:1-7
    Ephesians 2:11-18

    And specifically, for your "food laws" above...
    Colossians 2:13-17. Paul speaks of the Old Laws concerning food, drink, festivals, and the sabbath. He, like Christ, often talked about the erroneous view that the law was the most important thing...when in fact, it was always the "spirit of the law".

    Click here for source to all of above
    Last edited by Apokalupsis; December 8th, 2011 at 05:37 PM.
    -=]Apokalupsis[=-
    Senior Administrator
    -------------------------

    I never considered a difference of opinion in politics, in religion, in philosophy, as cause for withdrawing from a friend. - Thomas Jefferson




  5. #5
    ODN's Crotchety Old Man

    Join Date
    Mar 2004
    Location
    Location, Location
    Posts
    9,671
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: Old Testement laws and Christianity

    (Took me a while to respond. Sorry. I had to cut my grass.)

    Quote Originally Posted by Apokalupsis View Post
    Moral laws usually apply to all people (Thou shalt not murder) in all places. Civil laws, never will.
    If this is applies to the Bible, then it's either the case that:
    • At the time of Moses and relative ONLY to his people, killing homosexuals was something akin to issuing a ticket for speeding (except, you know, they killed the offenders then) because it was a Civil Law OR
    • It was the case that killing homosexuals was a moral law, in which case it should STILL be a moral law because if morality is absolute, then it doesn't change.


    If it was morally just to kill homosexuals then (just as it was morally wrong to murder then), then it should be morally just to kill homosexuals now, shouldn't it?

    Are all these laws Civil one or Moral ones? How can one make the distinction?

  6. #6

    Join Date
    Dec 1969
    Posts
    0
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: Old Testement laws and Christianity

    Doesn't that make God unjust? The first covenant was with Abraham, but it was also binding to his descendants as well. How was that fair? Even if we accept that this was fair (I don't see how, since there could have been some Israelites who didn't like the contract but were forced into it merely by being born) how was the new covenant fair? The new covenant is binding for ALL humans, not just Jews--- that's why Christians proselytize with unhealthy passion; to make the world Christian (and destroy all other cultures) and thereby "save" them. But God never formally made an agreement with other peoples like He did with the Israelites. If God isn't obligated to ask your permission for this kind of stuff (how is that fair?) they why did He do so with Abraham? If it was just a courtesy, then why did He not show that courtesy to the rest of us?

  7. #7
    Registered User

    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Posts
    614
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: Old Testement laws and Christianity

    Quote Originally Posted by Dionysus View Post
    If it was morally just to kill homosexuals then (just as it was morally wrong to murder then), then it should be morally just to kill homosexuals now, shouldn't it?
    The prohibition of homosexual practice is a moral law. Israel was a nation and had the authroity to carry out capital punishment for those who do wrong. Individuals don't have that right and for us to kill homosexuals would be murder.

  8. #8
    ODN Community Regular

    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    Seattle, Washington USA
    Posts
    7,405
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: Old Testement laws and Christianity

    Quote Originally Posted by theophilus View Post
    The prohibition of homosexual practice is a moral law. Israel was a nation and had the authroity to carry out capital punishment for those who do wrong. Individuals don't have that right and for us to kill homosexuals would be murder.
    Interesting... but that begs some questions...
    1. Why can nations enforce a law and individuals can not?
    2. What constitutes a legitimate nation?
    Feed me some debate pellets!

  9. #9
    Banned Indefinitely

    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    Posts
    9,345
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: Old Testement laws and Christianity

    Quote Originally Posted by chadn737 View Post
    How did Jesus change/complete old testement law?
    In the fiction that is the NT, he does some stuff. It's not really that important here. We can get into it if you want, but the real focus is this:

    How do we know which laws are still valid and which no longer apply?
    What most apologists will say is that the laws that agree with what Jesus agreed with are still in effect and the laws that go against what he said aren't. The reason this is a terrible way to create a moral code is it doesn't really pay any mind to avoiding needless harm, logic, or reason. Instead, the only guiding compass is "what did Jesus intend?" and that's up who ever is charismatic enough to convince Christians of what's what. Which is why we have intelligent educated people who worship a person who allegedly was all about peace and love... but want to also ruin the lives of homosexuals by denying them marriage. It really is a sad state of affairs... that we live in the age of the microchip and still have to eat the intellectual offal of the iron age.

  10. #10
    ODN's Crotchety Old Man

    Join Date
    Mar 2004
    Location
    Location, Location
    Posts
    9,671
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: Old Testement laws and Christianity

    Quote Originally Posted by theophilus View Post
    The prohibition of homosexual practice is a moral law. Israel was a nation and had the authroity to carry out capital punishment for those who do wrong. Individuals don't have that right and for us to kill homosexuals would be murder.
    Right, but you've misunderstood the question. It wasn't the nation of Israel that decided to kill homosexuals. GOD told them to kill homosexuals. So if it was MORALLY RIGHT to kill homosexuals THEN, then why isn't it MORALLY RIGHT to kill them now?

  11. #11
    Owner / Senior Admin

    Join Date
    Nov 2003
    Location
    San Diego, CA
    Posts
    19,394
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: Old Testement laws and Christianity

    Quote Originally Posted by Dionysus View Post
    Right, but you've misunderstood the question. It wasn't the nation of Israel that decided to kill homosexuals. GOD told them to kill homosexuals. So if it was MORALLY RIGHT to kill homosexuals THEN, then why isn't it MORALLY RIGHT to kill them now?
    The moral law is "Do not commit homosexual acts." It is the same type of law concerning other sexual activity (fornication for example). What to DO about the act in question, is a civil law however.

    It isn't a universal moral law to execute homosexuals.

    You have to remember that Israel is going to be the source of God's revelation. That revelation of course, being God's plan for humankind. Therefore, Israel is held to a very, very strict standard. God did not order for homosexuals throughout the world to be executed. God did not tell Israel to hunt down homosexuals or kill homosexuals from other nations as they were found.

    The order and example of Israel is extremely important. The rest of the world will be influenced by it. Therefore, it has the highest standard of any nation (back then). When Israel fell away from God, it faced extremely harsh punishments, and suffered.

    Prostitution was also a capital offense (in Israel). Yet Jesus befriended a prostitute when no one else would. It changed her life forever and serves as an example of who to treat others (especially those outcast by the majority). The moral law was not to executed prostitutes, it was "Do not engage in prostitution". What to DO about prostitution changes (depending upon the time and people).
    -=]Apokalupsis[=-
    Senior Administrator
    -------------------------

    I never considered a difference of opinion in politics, in religion, in philosophy, as cause for withdrawing from a friend. - Thomas Jefferson




  12. #12
    ODN's Crotchety Old Man

    Join Date
    Mar 2004
    Location
    Location, Location
    Posts
    9,671
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: Old Testement laws and Christianity

    Quote Originally Posted by Apokalupsis View Post
    The moral law is "Do not commit homosexual acts." It is the same type of law concerning other sexual activity (fornication for example). What to DO about the act in question, is a civil law however.

    It isn't a universal moral law to execute homosexuals.

    You have to remember that Israel is going to be the source of God's revelation. That revelation of course, being God's plan for humankind. Therefore, Israel is held to a very, very strict standard. God did not order for homosexuals throughout the world to be executed. God did not tell Israel to hunt down homosexuals or kill homosexuals from other nations as they were found.

    The order and example of Israel is extremely important. The rest of the world will be influenced by it. Therefore, it has the highest standard of any nation (back then). When Israel fell away from God, it faced extremely harsh punishments, and suffered.

    Prostitution was also a capital offense (in Israel). Yet Jesus befriended a prostitute when no one else would. It changed her life forever. The moral law was not to executed prostitutes, it was "Do not engage in prostitution". What to DO with prostitutes changes (depending upon the time and people).
    But I think this is still an argument FOR relative morality. I accept that God said is it immoral to BE a homosexual, but he also said it was moral to execute them; it's part and parcel to the law. If these things were MORAL then, then there's no reason NOW why the same practice shouldn't be endorsed.

  13. #13
    Registered User

    Join Date
    May 2010
    Location
    Manteca, CA
    Posts
    1,443
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: Old Testement laws and Christianity

    Quote Originally Posted by Dionysus View Post
    Right, but you've misunderstood the question. It wasn't the nation of Israel that decided to kill homosexuals. GOD told them to kill homosexuals. So if it was MORALLY RIGHT to kill homosexuals THEN, then why isn't it MORALLY RIGHT to kill them now?
    Please don't be jumping to conclusions. This isn't a simple matter at all. For example: God let the kings of Israel (for example Solomon and David) practice Polygamy, although He did not approve such perversion. That is called a concession, and more specifically a positive concession (that is, He went slack on them a bit), made to keep society together. The execution of homosexuals is an example of a negative concession (tightening the reins).

    In order to keep society together, He banned those practices that could break a society down: He gave laws about immigration, idolatry, and social conventions, in order to distance His people as much as possible from the Pagans living right next to them. They had to wash a certain way, wage war a certain way, deal with excrement a certain way, be cautious around certain people and carcasses (which is why Jesus called the Pharisees unmarked graves, because they polluted the people like disease ridden death whilst seeming inconspicuous), and deal out capital punishment for certain acts that defied Him. If had not done so, there would be no Israel for Jesus to be born into.
    There is no wealth like knowledge, no poverty like ignorance.
    Nahj ul-Balāgha by Ali bin Abu-Talib

  14. #14
    ODN's Crotchety Old Man

    Join Date
    Mar 2004
    Location
    Location, Location
    Posts
    9,671
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: Old Testement laws and Christianity

    Quote Originally Posted by Lukecash12 View Post
    Please don't be jumping to conclusions.
    Well, I don't know that I've jumped to any conclusion. It simply seems to follow from the premise.

    Quote Originally Posted by Lukecash12 View Post
    This isn't a simple matter at all. For example: God let the kings of Israel (for example Solomon and David) practice Polygamy, although He did not approve such perversion. That is called a concession, and more specifically a positive concession (that is, He went slack on them a bit), made to keep society together. The execution of homosexuals is an example of a negative concession (tightening the reins).
    Well, this is yet another example of relative morality. Either polygomy is morally wrong, or it is not morally wrong. Either homosexuality is morally wrong, or it is not morally wrong. If an act is tolerated under certain conditions and not in other, this means that the CONDITIONS that make the act morally right or wrong, not the act itself. This argument SCREAMS of relative morality.

    (the rest of your post was along the same theme, and I have excluded it for brevity)

  15. #15
    Registered User

    Join Date
    May 2010
    Location
    Manteca, CA
    Posts
    1,443
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: Old Testement laws and Christianity

    Quote Originally Posted by Dionysus View Post
    Well, I don't know that I've jumped to any conclusion. It simply seems to follow from the premise.

    Well, this is yet another example of relative morality. Either polygomy is morally wrong, or it is not morally wrong. Either homosexuality is morally wrong, or it is not morally wrong. If an act is tolerated under certain conditions and not in other, this means that the CONDITIONS that make the act morally right or wrong, not the act itself. This argument SCREAMS of relative morality.

    (the rest of your post was along the same theme, and I have excluded it for brevity)
    Clarification: In each case, we are dealing with a moral wrong. I pointed out that they were dealt with by way of concession. The way acts are dealt with cannot so easily be correlated with the gravity of the act itself. In other places in the bible, God tells us what is detestable/sinful to/against Him. The Laws were made to keep society together, not to suggest anything. They even changed over time (for example the concessions God made for Polygamy later in the history of Israel), making it more and more clear that they don't represent any absolute truth.
    There is no wealth like knowledge, no poverty like ignorance.
    Nahj ul-Balāgha by Ali bin Abu-Talib

  16. #16
    Owner / Senior Admin

    Join Date
    Nov 2003
    Location
    San Diego, CA
    Posts
    19,394
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: Old Testement laws and Christianity

    Quote Originally Posted by Dionysus View Post
    But I think this is still an argument FOR relative morality. I accept that God said is it immoral to BE a homosexual, but he also said it was moral to execute them; it's part and parcel to the law. If these things were MORAL then, then there's no reason NOW why the same practice shouldn't be endorsed.
    A few clarifications.

    First, it is not immoral to BE a homosexual. More accurately, it's immoral to engage in homosexual activity (just as it is to engage in fornication, lying, stealing, etc...).

    Also, God doesn't give a moral value to execution here. He merely describes the punishment for the act.

    Lastly, let's examine the statements involved. They are more accurately stated as:

    1) It is immoral (sinful) to engage in homosexual activity.

    2) As a result of engaging in homosexual activity, the proper recourse for Israel at this time is to execute the offender (which is the same recourse for some other sinful behavior).

    The statement regarding execution is not "It is moral for all nations to execute homosexuals."

    How do we know it is so specific vs general (and thus not applicable to all people for all time)? The simplest way to do this is to look at the rest of the context of the passage. Often times this clears up the objection or confusion. At the end of the chapter God explains why the previous commands were given.

    Lev 20:22 'Keep all my decrees and laws and follow them, so that the land where I am bringing you to live may not vomit you out. 23 You must not live according to the customs of the nations I am going to drive out before you. Because they did all these things, I abhorred them. 24 But I said to you, "You will possess their land; I will give it to you as an inheritance, a land flowing with milk and honey." I am the LORD your God, who has set you apart from the nations.
    God is definitely, without question, speaking specifically to Israel. Israel had not fully developed as a nation yet. They were still a young nation, still learning yet still responsible as being the example. God separates Israel from the rest of the world in many ways. Not only is Israel the Chosen and thus, are held to a higher standard...but they have rules/commandments that other nations simply do not have.
    -=]Apokalupsis[=-
    Senior Administrator
    -------------------------

    I never considered a difference of opinion in politics, in religion, in philosophy, as cause for withdrawing from a friend. - Thomas Jefferson




  17. #17
    ODN Community Regular

    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    Seattle, Washington USA
    Posts
    7,405
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: Old Testement laws and Christianity

    Quote Originally Posted by Apokalupsis View Post
    2) As a result of engaging in homosexual activity, the proper recourse for Israel at this time is to execute the offender (which is the same recourse for some other sinful behavior).
    Please consider the following.

    The punishment of death involves the killing of a person, the taking of a human life. Under most conditions it is a sin to kill as much as it is a sin to "lay with another man." (god doesn't say anything about women btw)

    So here we have two sins in juxtaposition where one sin is justifying or nullifying the other. If the punishment itself were not against the moral code then the relativism of the punishment would be indisputable. Who cares what the fine for man on man sex is, its simply not a moral question. Because we are answering one wrong with another we must measure the two.

    In this case God said that gay sex is worse than killing thus the one sin justifies the other. The situation of the nation of Israel is immaterial to that comparison unless you want to say that morality is relative to other needs and that the needs of a state of men trumps morality on some occasions. Which is what you argue. You argue the value of one sin vs another changes due to circumstance unrelated to the sin itself.

    I imagine you will counter saying that killing is not a sin, only murder is and execution of the law is not murder. But I would say that having lust is a sin so executing lustful people would not be murder. I pray you disagree with that notion.

    So that leaves us a quandary. Either its ok to kill homosexuals for their sin if you so feel the need to, or God has a relativist moral system, or its all just a story human beings made up to justify their actions.

    I tend to go for #3. I'll take #2 since it seems very consistent with most of the bible where God orders all kinds of contrary things to be done depending on the circumstance or his desire, and I abhor #1 for its deep inhumanity.
    Feed me some debate pellets!

  18. #18
    ODN's Crotchety Old Man

    Join Date
    Mar 2004
    Location
    Location, Location
    Posts
    9,671
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: Old Testement laws and Christianity

    Quote Originally Posted by Apokalupsis View Post
    A few clarifications.

    First, it is not immoral to BE a homosexual. More accurately, it's immoral to engage in homosexual activity (just as it is to engage in fornication, lying, stealing, etc...).

    Also, God doesn't give a moral value to execution here. He merely describes the punishment for the act.
    I understand this, but is not the act of punishment itself an act subject to moral deliniation, just like any other act? (Sigfried seems to be arguing along the same lines, so I'll spare you the extra reading from my end)

  19. #19
    Owner / Senior Admin

    Join Date
    Nov 2003
    Location
    San Diego, CA
    Posts
    19,394
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: Old Testement laws and Christianity

    Quote Originally Posted by Sigfried View Post
    Please consider the following.

    The punishment of death involves the killing of a person, the taking of a human life. Under most conditions it is a sin to kill as much as it is a sin to "lay with another man." (god doesn't say anything about women btw)

    So here we have two sins in juxtaposition where one sin is justifying or nullifying the other.
    Not so. Killing in and of itself is neither sinful or sinless. It is the manner in which life is taken that dictates the value of the act. Killing someone in self defense is not a sin. Killing someone in war is not a sin. Killing yourself to save another is not a sin. Executing someone is not a sin. Killing in and of itself is far too broad an act to attach a moral value to it.

    If the punishment itself were not against the moral code then the relativism of the punishment would be indisputable.
    The punishment of execution is not a sin...and relativism has nothing to do with it.

    Who cares what the fine for man on man sex is, its simply not a moral question. Because we are answering one wrong with another we must measure the two.
    Not true because execution is not a wrong.

    In this case God said that gay sex is worse than killing thus the one sin justifies the other.
    No He didn't. He said that homosexual sex in the nation of Israel at the time of the issued commandment is punished by death.

    The situation of the nation of Israel is immaterial to that comparison unless you want to say that morality is relative to other needs and that the needs of a state of men trumps morality on some occasions.
    Not at all. For all people in all places for all time (according to the Bible) homosexual activity is sinful. What to do as a result however, is dependent upon the time, place and who is involved. The reaction to an immoral act for Israel in that particular time, is not the same for other nations at the time, nor of this time. You are confusing civil law with moral law.

    Which is what you argue. You argue the value of one sin vs another changes due to circumstance unrelated to the sin itself.
    It is not a sin to execute. I'm not arguing that at all.

    I imagine you will counter saying that killing is not a sin, only murder is and execution of the law is not murder. But I would say that having lust is a sin so executing lustful people would not be murder. I pray you disagree with that notion.
    Just because something is a sin, it does not mean it warrants the same reaction or response. You confuse the severity here. See the passage Dio originally linked (in Leviticus). There are a variety of punishments. Just like today, immoral and/or illegal acts have differing consequences which are dependent upon the severity of the act itself as well as the subjects involved.

    So that leaves us a quandary. Either its ok to kill homosexuals for their sin if you so feel the need to, or God has a relativist moral system, or its all just a story human beings made up to justify their actions.

    I tend to go for #3. I'll take #2 since it seems very consistent with most of the bible where God orders all kinds of contrary things to be done depending on the circumstance or his desire, and I abhor #1 for its deep inhumanity.
    None of the above. Since the command to execute homosexuals does not apply to any nation other than Israel and it does not apply outside of the time it was given, it's a non-issue (for other nations).

    ---------- Post added at 03:48 PM ---------- Previous post was at 03:46 PM ----------

    Quote Originally Posted by Dionysus View Post
    I understand this, but is not the act of punishment itself an act subject to moral deliniation, just like any other act? (Sigfried seems to be arguing along the same lines, so I'll spare you the extra reading from my end)
    Execution is not sinful (according to Scripture). And execution is a civil command to an immoral act. Civil commands are not binding to other nations nor other times than which are they given.
    -=]Apokalupsis[=-
    Senior Administrator
    -------------------------

    I never considered a difference of opinion in politics, in religion, in philosophy, as cause for withdrawing from a friend. - Thomas Jefferson




  20. #20
    ODN's Crotchety Old Man

    Join Date
    Mar 2004
    Location
    Location, Location
    Posts
    9,671
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: Old Testement laws and Christianity

    Quote Originally Posted by Apokalupsis View Post
    Execution is not sinful (according to Scripture). And execution is a civil command to an immoral act. Civil commands are not binding to other nations nor other times than which are they given.
    Well that's fine, and I don't take issue with that. But you can't separate the moral value of the act of execution from the immoral act of practicing homosexuality by saying the punishment is a civil requirement. The punishment is in response to an immoral act, therefore if we assume that the punishment fits the crime i.e. it sets things right, we must assume that the execution itself is just as morally right as the sin was morally wrong. There IS a moral value set against both the sin and the penalty for sin; one is in fact morally wrong and the other is in fact the morally right reaction to it.

    So it follows that if it was morally right to execute homosexuals for the sin of homosexuality then, it follows that it is morally right to execute them now.

 

 
Page 1 of 3 1 2 3 LastLast

Similar Threads

  1. The Brick Testament
    By The Great Khan in forum Shootin' the Breeze / Off-Topic
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: March 12th, 2010, 01:22 PM
  2. Rape and the Old Testament
    By Reverend Wade in forum Religion
    Replies: 3
    Last Post: January 14th, 2010, 10:03 AM
  3. God of the Old Testament vs. the One of the New
    By Sapphire Moon in forum Religion
    Replies: 6
    Last Post: May 24th, 2008, 01:20 PM
  4. Rape Laws Are Hate Crime Laws
    By Turtleflipper in forum Politics
    Replies: 13
    Last Post: January 14th, 2008, 10:02 AM
  5. New Testament vs. Homosexuals
    By Vorketh in forum Social Issues
    Replies: 0
    Last Post: November 5th, 2004, 11:10 AM

Tags for this Thread

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •