FREE booklet : The New Covenant: Does It Abolish God's Law?
The New Covenant: Does It Abolish God's Law?
¬ Introduction
¬ God's Magnificent Series of Covenants
  Did Abraham Keep the Same Commandments God Gave to Moses?
  How Can We Obey God's Commandments?
  The Sinai Covenant and the 'Voice of the Lord'
  God's 'Laws, Statutes and Judgments'
  Key Elements of the Sinai Covenant
  Rightly Understanding 'Justification' and 'Righteousness'
  Did the Ten Commandments Exist Before Moses?
  God's Law: Is It a Burden or a Blessing?
¬ A New Covenant for Transforming the Heart
  What Was the Main Weakness of the Sinai Covenant?
  How God Balances Justice With Mercy
  How Is the New Covenant 'New'?
  The Ten Commandments: Keys in a Law of Love
¬ The High Priest Essential to Salvation
  Grace and Law: Why Are They Inseparable?
  A High Priest Eager to Help Us
¬ Circumcision vs. a 'New Creation' in Christ
  Current Confusion Over Christian Freedom
  The 'Curse of the Law'
  Galatians 4:9-10: Are God's Laws Bondage?
  Did Paul's Words to the Galatians Contradict His Actions?
  Why Paul Used the Term 'the Whole Law' in Galatians 5:3
  What's Wrong With Our Human Nature?
  The Holy Spirit: God's Promise of His Divine Help
¬ The Justice and Judgment of God
  How Paul Put the Law on 'Firmer Footing'
  How Does Justification Relate to Salvation?
  Does Romans 14 Abolish Laws on Unclean Meats?
  Did Paul Teach That All Days of Worship Are Alike?
  Did Paul Tell the Romans One Thing and the Corinthians the Opposite?
¬ Peace and Unity in Christ
  Paul Imprisoned Over a Man-Made Taboo
  The Corruption of Apostolic Christianity
  What Was 'Wiped Out' by Jesus Christ's Death?
  What Does 'Shadow of Things to Come' Mean?
  The Calendar Used by the Earliest Gentile Christians
  The Ascetic Philosophy Affecting the Colossians
  Colossians 2:16-17: Are God's Laws Obsolete?
¬ The Apostles, the Old Testament and God's Law
  Jesus and Paul Emphasize the Law's Correct Focus
  Paul Regularly Used the Old Testament as the Authority for His Teaching
  Acts Shows What the Early Church Believed and Practiced
  What Did Paul Mean by 'Christ Is the End of the Law'?
  The Jerusalem Conference of Acts 15: What Was Decided?
¬ Jesus' Teaching on God's Law
  Other Important Ways Jesus Fulfilled the Law
  Does the New Covenant Abolish the Commandments?
  The 'New' Part of Jesus Christ's 'New Commandment'
  Confusion Over Legalism: What It Is and Isn't
  Does God Set Conditions on His Gift of Eternal Life?
¬ All the World Under the New Covenant
  Liberty Through God's Law
  A Covenant of Marriage
   
From the publisher of The Good News magazine.
The New Covenant: Does It Abolish God's Law?
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Did Abraham Keep the Same Commandments God Gave to Moses?

Most religious teachers say that God's commands given through Moses applied only to ancient Israel and are not for us today. But in drawing that conclusion, most of them overlook the full significance of what God said about Abraham's obedience in Genesis 26:5, hundreds of years before God spoke to Moses and Israel at Mt. Sinai: "Abraham obeyed me and kept my requirements, my commands, my decrees and my laws" (NIV).

The Hebrew words God uses here are especially important. As The Expositor's Bible Commentary explains regarding this verse: "The Lord then added a remarkable note: Abraham 'kept my requirements [mismarti], my commands [miswotay], my decrees [huqqotay] and my laws [wetorotay]' (v. 5).

"It is remarkable that this is precisely the way in which obedience to the Sinai Covenant is expressed in Deuteronomy 11:1: 'Love the Lord your God and keep his requirements [mismarto], his decrees [huqqotayw], his laws [mispatayw] and his commands [miswotayw]' . . .

"Thus Abraham is an example of one who shows the law written on his heart (Jeremiah 31:33). He is the writer's ultimate example of true obedience to the law, the one about whom the Lord could say, 'Abraham obeyed me' (v. 5). Thus, by showing Abraham to be an example of 'keeping the law,' the writer has shown the nature of the relationship between the law and faith. Abraham, a man who lived in faith, could be described as one who kept the law" (Vol. 2, 1990, pp. 186-187, emphasis added).

Abraham obeyed the same foundational spiritual laws that were given later to Israel. However, the symbolic tabernacle or temple ceremonies and rituals and Israel's national administrative laws were not applicable in Abraham's day. Nor are they necessary for individual Christians today, because a physical temple is no longer the center of our worship as it was in the ancient nation of Israel (John 4:19-21; Hebrews 9:9-10).

Thus, Abraham knew a lot more about God's requirements for and definitions of righteous behavior than most religious teachers give him credit for today. It also means that the laws defining righteous attitudes and behavior that were given to Israel were known and practiced by servants of God long before the Sinai Covenant was ever established.


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