Sunday, November 16, 2008

Dichotomy between Old Testement and New???

For quite a while now, in fact most of my life, I have heard all sorts of arguments and propositions that the New Covenant, the New testement is different from the old. I have heard that the prophecy the Old Testement contains and the message to God's people then has either been fulfilled or that the message has changed for God's people now.

Reading this morning, I came across Numbers 15:27-31

And if any person sins unknowingly or unintentionally, he shall offer a female goat a year old for a sin offering. And the priest shall make atonement before the Lord for the person who commits an error when he sins unknowingly or unintentionally, to make atonement for him; and he shall be forgiven. You shall have one law for him who sins unknowingly or unintentionally, whether he is native born among the Israelites or a stranger who is sojourning among them. But the person who does anything [wrong] willfully and openly, whether he is native-born or a stranger, that one reproaches, reviles, and blasphemes the Lord, and that person shall be cut off from among his people [that the atonement made for them may not include him]. Because he has despised and rejected the word of the Lord, and has broken His commandment, that person shall be utterly cut off; his iniquity shall be upon him.

This sounds a lot like some New Testement warnings to me.

Heb 10:26 For if we go on deliberately and willingly sinning after once acquiring the knowledge of the Truth, there is no longer any sacrifice left to atone for [our] sins [no further offering to which to look forward].
Heb 10:27 [There is nothing left for us then] but a kind of awful and fearful prospect and expectation of divine judgment and the fury of burning wrath and indignation which will consume those who put themselves in opposition [to God]. [Isa. 26:11.]
Heb 10:28 Any person who has violated and [thus] rejected and set at naught the Law of Moses is put to death without pity or mercy on the evidence of two or three witnesses. [Deut. 17:2-6.]

It sounds to me like the consequences will be even worse.

Heb 10:29 How much worse (sterner and heavier) punishment do you suppose he will be judged to deserve who has spurned and [thus] trampled underfoot the Son of God, and who has considered the covenant blood by which he was consecrated common and unhallowed, thus profaning it and insulting and outraging the [Holy] Spirit [Who imparts] grace (the unmerited favor and blessing of God)? [Exod. 24:8.]

Has the message changed or has God changed?

Mat 5:17 Do not think that I have come to do away with or undo the Law or the Prophets; I have come not to do away with or undo but to complete and fulfill them.
Mat 5:18 For truly I tell you, until the sky and earth pass away and perish, not one smallest letter nor one little hook [identifying certain Hebrew letters] will pass from the Law until all things [it foreshadows] are accomplished.
Mat 5:19 Whoever then breaks or does away with or relaxes one of the least [important] of these commandments and teaches men so shall be called least [important] in the kingdom of heaven, but he who practices them and teaches others to do so shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven.
Mat 5:20 For I tell you, unless your righteousness (your uprightness and your right standing with God) is more than that of the scribes and Pharisees, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven.
Mat 5:21 You have heard that it was said to the men of old, You shall not kill, and whoever kills shall be liable to and unable to escape the punishment imposed by the court. [Exod. 20:13; Deut. 5:17; 16:18.]
Mat 5:22 But I say to you that everyone who continues to be angry with his brother or harbors malice (enmity of heart) against him shall be liable to and unable to escape the punishment imposed by the court; and whoever speaks contemptuously and insultingly to his brother shall be liable to and unable to escape the punishment imposed by the Sanhedrin, and whoever says, You cursed fool! [You empty-headed idiot!] shall be liable to and unable to escape the hell (Gehenna) of fire.

What has changed?

Mat 22:37 And He replied to him, You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind (intellect). [Deut. 6:5.]
Mat 22:38 This is the great (most important, principal) and first commandment.
Mat 22:39 And a second is like it: You shall love your neighbor as [you do] yourself. [Lev. 19:18.]
Mat 22:40 These two commandments sum up and upon them depend all the Law and the Prophets.

Is the Good News, the Gospel, that we are different from those in the Old Testement or that we are now part of them?

Eph 2:11 Therefore, remember that at one time you were Gentiles (heathens) in the flesh, called Uncircumcision by those who called themselves Circumcision, [itself a mere mark] in the flesh made by human hands.
Eph 2:12 [Remember] that you were at that time separated (living apart) from Christ [excluded from all part in Him], utterly estranged and outlawed from the rights of Israel as a nation, and strangers with no share in the sacred compacts of the [Messianic] promise [with no knowledge of or right in God's agreements, His covenants]. And you had no hope (no promise); you were in the world without God.
Eph 2:13 But now in Christ Jesus, you who once were [so] far away, through (by, in) the blood of Christ have been brought near.
Eph 2:14 For He is [Himself] our peace (our bond of unity and harmony). He has made us both [Jew and Gentile] one [body], and has broken down (destroyed, abolished) the hostile dividing wall between us,
Eph 2:15 By abolishing in His [own crucified] flesh the enmity [caused by] the Law with its decrees and ordinances [which He annulled]; that He from the two might create in Himself one new man [one new quality of humanity out of the two], so making peace.
Eph 2:16 And [He designed] to reconcile to God both [Jew and Gentile, united] in a single body by means of His cross, thereby killing the mutual enmity and bringing the feud to an end.
Eph 2:17 And He came and preached the glad tidings of peace to you who were afar off and [peace] to those who were near. [Isa. 57:19.]
Eph 2:18 For it is through Him that we both [whether far off or near] now have an introduction (access) by one [Holy] Spirit to the Father [so that we are able to approach Him].
Eph 2:19 Therefore you are no longer outsiders (exiles, migrants, and aliens, excluded from the rights of citizens), but you now share citizenship with the saints (God's own people, consecrated and set apart for Himself); and you belong to God's [own] household.
Eph 2:20 You are built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets with Christ Jesus Himself the chief Cornerstone.
Eph 2:21 In Him the whole structure is joined (bound, welded) together harmoniously, and it continues to rise (grow, increase) into a holy temple in the Lord [a sanctuary dedicated, consecrated, and sacred to the presence of the Lord].
Eph 2:22 In Him [and in fellowship with one another] you yourselves also are being built up [into this structure] with the rest, to form a fixed abode (dwelling place) of God in (by, through) the Spirit.

Oh precious Jesus that by your spirit and your power that we walk in your statutes and your commandments! Save us Lord from the mistakes of the past and deliver us daily from the bondage to sin!


Lin said...

Zeke, I have studied Hebrews 10 for quite a while and am amazed at how little it is mentioned in sermons.

I have also studied 1 John 5 for quite a while and have looked and looked for the sin that leads to death and the one in which John implies we should not even pray for that person.

What is the sin leading to death? I came across some teaching that said it was continual wickeness by a professing believer or the 'sin of presumption'.

I think you are right in many respects about the New and Old covenant. We have a Savior but that does not mean we have a license to sin and cheap forgivness. The blood was not cheap.

I would be interested in your take on the sin leading to death and whether it is the same as the unpardonable sin which many commentaries are not in agreement with. It sounds like it could be the same as what you quoted out of Numbers.

ezekiel said...

I think the reason you don't hear it preached on is the damage it would do to the doctrines of "once saved always saved" among others.

1Jn 5:16 If anyone sees his brother [believer] committing a sin that does not [lead to] death (the extinguishing of life), he will pray and [God] will give him life [yes, He will grant life to all those whose sin is not one leading to death]. There is a sin [that leads] to death; I do not say that one should pray for that.

The TSK references for this verse are....There: Num_15:30, Num_16:26-32; 1Sa_2:25; Jer_15:1-2; Mat_12:31-32; Mar_3:28-30; Luk_12:10; 2Ti_4:14; Heb_6:4-6, Heb_10:26-31; 2Pe_2:20-22

But I think you already knew that. :) A couple of the references follow but all need to be carefully looked at.

Num 15:30 But the person who does anything [wrong] willfully and openly, whether he is native-born or a stranger, that one reproaches, reviles, and blasphemes the Lord, and that person shall be cut off from among his people [that the atonement made for them may not include him].
Num 15:31 Because he has despised and rejected the word of the Lord, and has broken His commandment, that person shall be utterly cut off; his iniquity shall be upon him.

Jer 15:1 THEN THE Lord said to me, Though Moses and Samuel stood [interceding for them] before Me, yet My mind could not be turned with favor toward this people [Judah]. Send them out of My sight and let them go!
Jer 15:2 And if they say to you, Where shall we go? then tell them, Thus says the Lord: Such as are [destined] for death, to death; and such as are for the sword, to the sword; and such as are for famine, to famine; and such as are for captivity, to captivity.
Jer 15:3 And I will appoint over them four kinds [of destroyers], says the Lord: the sword to slay, the dogs to tear and drag away, and the birds of the air and the beasts of the earth to devour and to destroy.
Jer 15:4 And I will cause them to be tossed to and fro among all the kingdoms of the earth and to be made a horror to all nations because of Manasseh son of Hezekiah king of Judah, for [the horrible wickedness] which he did in Jerusalem. [II Kings 21:3-7.]

What gets really interesting is if you look at the Jeremiah verses and then go read Psalm 78. In Psalms 78 Judah was chosen after Shiloh was broken off!
Isaiah 42 is also very enlightening. I suggest you read that in the context of our discussion as well.

Where it really gets even more interesting, especially in light of my recent comments over at Wade's regarding limited atonement, take a look at the TSK references to Numbers 15:31.

doeth ought: Num_9:13, Num_14:44; Gen_17:14; Exo_21:14; Lev_20:3, Lev_20:6, Lev_20:10; Deu_1:43, Deu_17:12; Deu_29:19-20; Psa_19:13; Mat_12:32; Heb_10:26, Heb_10:29; 2Pe_2:10

See especially Lev 20:6.

Lev 20:5 Then I will set My face against that man and against his family and will cut him off from among their people, him and all who follow him to [unfaithfulness to Me, and thus] play the harlot after Molech.
Lev 20:6 The person who turns to those who have familiar spirits and to wizards, [being unfaithful to Israel's Maker Who is her Husband, and thus] playing the harlot after them, I will set My face against that person and will cut him off from among his people [that he may not be included in the atonement made for them]. [Isa. 54:5.]

If I am to argue against limited atonement then I need to qualify that argument by saying that in the beginning, when Isael was delivered from bondage in Egypt, the atonement was unlimited. However, rebellion or willful disobedience by the individual did in fact limit atonement. To carry that into the NT we wind up at Hebrews 10.

Heb 10:26 For if we go on deliberately and willingly sinning after once acquiring the knowledge of the Truth, there is no longer any sacrifice left to atone for [our] sins [no further offering to which to look forward].

So if I qualify my argument against limited atonement, I can still make the case. If I don't qulify it, then I have to say that atonement is limited by an individual when he intentionally sins. But then that moves the argument from the L in tulip to the I in tulip. Does any of this tell us that His grace is irresistable? Psalms 78, Jeremiah 15, Isaiah 42, and Hebrews 10 would indicate differently.

Wow what a study! Thanks for your comment. I hope some of this helps.

Lin said...

I am copying your comment and will print it out to study the passages. Wow, thanks. Yes, it is quite a study.

One unknown older theologian who blogs made the point that the 1 John passage is written as if the audience would have known exactly what he was referring to. Therefore, we should be able to find it. This leads us to look at Johns audience...mostly Jews? Those would know the OT? I don't know but I KNOW he was writing to 'professing believers'.

That ought to give us pause and make us want to study this in depth.

That is what prompted me to to comment on your topic. I think the answer is in the OT.

I had not even thought of this in light of limited atonement. Good point. I do not have a strong position on that just glad that it or not. :o)

Here is a commentary on this...he does short commentaries on a verse:

“There is a sin unto death: I do not say that he shall pray for it.” I’ve heard preacher’s say we do not know what this sin is. If that be the case, then we cannot know how to keep ourselves from it. Nor can we know who and who not to pray for. Because of the seriousness of the text, I refuse to believe that God would keep us in the dark concerning it.

I believe that John is not necessarily speaking of one specific sin, but rather a kind of sin. If we use the Old Testament as our commentary on this Scripture, we find the type of sin John is speaking of is a sin of presumption. Trace this word and its equivalent throughout the Old Canon and you’ll find, more often than not, death is associated with it. If I’m correct (and I believe I am), there was no Old Testament sacrifice for the sin of presumption. Is it any wonder then that David prayed, “Keep back thy servant also from presumptuous sins”?

The following is list of some who committed this sin: Achan, Saul, Ananias and Sapphira, Nadab and Abihu, and some of the Corinthian believers. And what does God say to such people? “Surely this iniquity shall not be purged from you till ye die, saith the Lord God...” It should be noted in each of these cases this presumptuous sin was not committed out of weakness, but wickedness.

Let me say, there should be no guilt complex on the part of Godly believers when God removes the burden of prayer for relatives and friends. Samuel, Jeremiah, and Joshua were told by God to cease their praying. Even Moses, who committed the sin of presumption, when praying about it, was told by God, “[S]peak no more unto me of this matter.” And Jeremiah was commanded of the Lord, “Pray not for this people for their good.”

God still considers sin serious...even if this generation of Christians does not."

Here is his link:

Check out this Spurgeon sermon on the sin of presumption. He is preaching from Psalm 19.

ezekiel said...

Thanks a lot for the links! You will recognize a lot the scriptural references when you check them all.

I needed the edification today! Thanks brother.:)