Matthew 15 traditions of men?
Posted in the Villa Heights Forum
#1 Apr 21, 2013
New King James Version (NKJV)
Defilement Comes from Within
15 Then the scribes and Pharisees who were from Jerusalem came to Jesus, saying, 2 “Why do Your disciples transgress the tradition of the elders? For they do not wash their hands when they eat bread.”
3 He answered and said to them,“Why do you also transgress the commandment of God because of your tradition? 4 For God commanded, saying,‘Honor your father and your mother’; [a] and,‘He who curses father or mother, let him be put to death.’[b] 5 But you say,‘Whoever says to his father or mother,“Whatever profit you might have received from me is a gift to God”— 6 then he need not honor his father or mother.’[c] Thus you have made the commandment[d] of God of no effect by your tradition. 7 Hypocrites! Well did Isaiah prophesy about you, saying:
8 ‘These people draw near to Me with their mouth,
And[e] honor Me with their lips,
But their heart is far from Me.
9 And in vain they worship Me,
Teaching as doctrines the commandments of men.’”
Much is made of the teaching as doctrines the commandments of men. But does anyone actually see the real problem? The real problem isn't traditions-they are not sinful and wrong in themselves. The problem is when we transgress the commands of God due to our tradition. When we take our pet beliefs that are traditions or opinions and not the commands of Christ, and bind them on others or cause God's commands to be of no authority, then we are in error according to the passage.
If we have someone teaching that water baptism should not be performed today, is this not making the commands of God of no effect due to the teachings and commandments of men? Jesus has commanded us to be baptized-regardless if we agree with the reasons, it is still required by God. Isn't this someone setting aside the authority of God for their own tradition?
How about the churches of Christ and their traditions? One cuppers-how does either side of the argument negate the command to partake of the Lords Supper? Does instrumental music interfere or nullify the ability of us to sing and make melody in our hearts? Why divide over these traditions when others-Sunday school, multiple services-get swept under the rug? And don't we nullify the commands of God when we condemn others over disputable matters?
But yet we are also told to compromise on other matters that God has told us explicitly about. Compromise for the sake of unity in the body-isn't it possible we nullify the commandments of God by doing so?
#2 Apr 22, 2013
You should know by now that I whole-heartedly agree with the principle you've stated there! First we have what God said from the beginning, then we have what thousands before us have done with it.
Jesus knew about geology when preaching the sermon on the mount. Soils are based on the parent rock below having been decomposed. Soil, dirt, is what happens when the bedrock has been weathered, broken, and further contaminated and broken apart and had all manner of life feeding off small parts of it. The longer the time between the formation of the parent rock, the deeper the soil. Luke is more explicit than Matthew's account, as he said to dig down to the rock, not just dig part way to the rock. And what did He say the rock is?
We all know that men - various sects - have done what they thought best in founding their faith and what they teach others, but the fact that there is still much division and further degrading the bedrock, that we have not got to the bedrock Jesus spoke of. He said it is about His word/doctrine, and not solely relying on what the various 'faith fathers' of the sects have said.
Who so desires to know the truth of Jesus Christ that they are willing to leave everything to know Him and the truth that He gave us? If God still counts the Lord's Day as the Sabbath, who would be willing to stand up for the commandments of God today? Who would be willing to draw the line of fellowship where John did in II John 9-11?
The other day I had a lengthy discussion with one of the local CoC preachers on the topic of the Law, and in principle we agree that the word of God stands eternally true and unchanging - what He declared true and good still remains true and good, and what He has condemned He still condemns. And no, we didn't make it to specifics beyond that generality:-)
So, there is hope, so long as men anywhere desire to do His will and believe that He alone is true.
#3 Apr 22, 2013
You are on the right track. Ceni is the culprit.
Strict ceni position by Kenneth Sublet:
#4 Apr 22, 2013
Borrowed from Matt Slick on commandment keeping=salvation.
Matt: Must we keep the commandments of God to be saved?
Larry: Yes, you must.
Matt: Okay, then may I ask which commandments we must keep in order to become saved?
Larry: All of them.
Matt: Are you keeping all the commandments?
Larry: I strive.
Matt: Excuse me, but if you are striving, that means you are not keeping them all. Then doesn't that mean you are not saved?
Larry: Why not let God judge?
Matt: But, if you must keep all the commandments to be saved, and you are not keeping them, then doesn't that mean you aren't saved?
Larry: Rahab lied to hide the spies, did she perish for lying?
Matt: Are you saying it was okay for Rahab to lie? After all, if she did and she didn't go to hell, then she stayed saved without keeping the commandments.
Larry: That's right.
Matt: But isn't that a contradiction? You said you must keep the commandments and yet she did not and she is saved. So which is it? Must we keep the commandments to be saved or not?
Larry: Go search out the book of the Lord and read.
Matt: Are we justified by faith or by keeping the commandments?
Larry: I already showed you the truth that Rahab lied and was JUSTIFIED for her faith,
Matt: I know, but please be patient with me. Was Rahab's lie NOT a sin?
Larry: No, it was not sin.
Matt: If the Bible says to not lie and she lied, how could it not be a sin?
Larry: Rahab was justified by faith. If you don't understand that, all I can say is that that is what the scriptures say. If you say that the scriptures contradict themselves, it appears so. But I do not believe so.
Matt: So then, the lie of Rahab was not a lie?
Larry: My advice to you is to pray about it and to ask the Lord to open it up to you.
Matt: Are we justified by the law then?
Larry: Look at what justified Abraham in James 2, but we are not justified by keeping the law. But Rahab, look at what Rahab did. She lied to save others and she was still justified.
Matt: Are you saying that it is okay to lie depending on the situation?
Larry: Yes, I am.
Matt: Please excuse me, but it sounds like you are saying that grace allows us to sin since you said it was okay to lie depending on the situation.
Larry: They said Paul was saying that too, but he wasn't any more than me. They said Paul preached "let us sin that grace may abound." No, he didn't teach sin that grace may abound, but he DID SAY that some said he said it.
Matt: I see what you are typing Larry, but, I can't help but think that you are saying it is okay to lie, depending on the circumstance, because the grace of God allows us to. Is that right?
Larry: You are saved by grace, and grace teaches, and you must obey grace. Preachers today are teaching people to sin by teaching Luther and Calvin.
Matt: But, isn't grace that which is not of the law?
Larry stopped talking to me at this point. I suspect it is because he cannot make his system of thought work very well.
By way of correction, we are justified before God by faith, not by works (Rom. 5:1; Eph. 2:8-9). The reason we do good works is because we are saved, not to get saved and not to keep ourselves saved.
#5 Apr 22, 2013
Break one commandment, and you have broken all of them.
All 613 of them.
Which you were never under to begin with.
Since: May 10
#6 Apr 22, 2013
What would have happened if Rahab had not lied?
#7 Apr 22, 2013
Hmmm. If this is true, can you show me the clear law keeping requirement as such from the OT?
After all, it was all about the Torah and Torah keeping. Where in the Torah does it say that if one is guilty of breaking one law, one is quilty of breaking them all? I've never seen that one.
And, btw Bobby, Matt Slick is hardly one to base doctrine on his words or comic books;-)
#8 Apr 22, 2013
I am going to defend Bobby and his posting from Matt Slick. All he was doing was pointing out the inconsistency of Larry's position. We must all be careful about our terminology. The first few lines got Larry in trouble. It snowballed from there.
As far as Rahab goes, was she justified by faith? Yes. Did she lie? Yes. Somewhere down the line God must have forgiven her. Is lying sin all of the time, or is it like Catholicism teaches, it isn't sin if it furthers the religion?
Barnsweb, I'm sure you know this, but it is in the book of James where we are told if we break one commandment we are guilty of all. It appears to be an allusion to Deuteronomy 27:26 which states "Cursed is the one who does not confirm all the words of this law".
#9 Apr 22, 2013
I approve this response. Glad to hear that the local coc man agrees in principle. I do as well. I am trying to cut through the noise of traditions at the congregation I serve, and in my own walk. You have to get back to the basics to do this.
#10 Apr 22, 2013
The piney.com post is kinda hard to read. There has to be a better way to get his point across! Agree that CENI-S (silence) causes a whole lot of problems and inconsistency. Common sense and letting the book explain itself is still the best method of interpretation in my view.
Since: Jul 11
#11 Apr 22, 2013
#12 Apr 22, 2013
Deuteronomy 27:26 (KJV)
26 Cursed be he that confirmeth not all the words of this law to do them. And all the people shall say, Amen.
James 2:10 (KJV)
10 For whosoever shall keep the whole law, and yet offend in one point, he is guilty of all.
And not one of them could keep it, either in the OT or the NT. The law was made so that these people (Israel) could see that they were unrighteous and needed to trust God, not how to become righteous by following it to the letter.
Which was impossible, and still is.
#13 Apr 22, 2013
I just looked at it again and can't make heads or tails of it. Is instrumental music the mark of the beast? Sacrifices and the system not commanded? Way out in left field.
#14 Apr 22, 2013
Thanks for the references everyone. It hasn't been a focal point to note to date. Regarding the link for the Rabbi about the grace of God evidenced from the beginnings in the OT, He had grace towards those who loved Him then - such as David, Rahab and Israel as a whole - and we know He is forever the same. Looking at what He said when Moses was on the mount and Israel made the golden calf - His grace towards His people, or His grace towards Adam and Eve - we wouldn't be here at all if it were not for His grace and love.
So, while 'guilty', surely His grace is sufficient for those that desire to do His will - even if imperfectly.
Good point. I really think James knew Jesus second only to John. Just now looking at the AENT translation on James - someone else may find it of interest:
My Brothers, do not hold to the faith of the glory of our Master Y'shua the Mashiyach with double-minded hypocrisy. For if there come into your assembly a man with rings of gold or splendid garments and there come in a poor man in ragged and stained garments; and respect is shown to him who is clothed in splendid garments, and you say to him,'Be honorably seated;" while to the poor man, say,'Stand way over there,' or 'sit here (in low prostration) before my footstool;' are you not showing double mindedness among yourselves and becoming advocates of evil thoughts? Hear, my beloved Brothers; has not Elohim chosen the poor of the world, the rich in faith, to be heirs in the Kingdom which Elohim has promised to them that love him? But you have despised the poor man. Do not rich men exalt themselves over you and drag you before the tribunals? Do they not hate that worthy Name, which is invoked upon you? And if in this you fulfill the Torah of Elohim, as it is written,'You will love your neighbor as yoruself,' you will do well, but if you have partiality towards persons, you commit sin; and you are convicted by Torah as breakers of Torah. For he that will keep the whole Torah and yet fail in one aspect of it, is an enemy to the whole Torah. For he who said,'You will not commit adultery,' said also,'You will not kill.' If then you commit no adultery, but you do murder, you have become a defiler of Torah. So speak and so act as persons that are to be judged by the Torah of perfect freedom. For judgment without mercy will be on him who has practiced no mercy; by mercy you will be raised above judgment. What is the use, my Brothers, if a man say,'I have faith,' and he has no works? Can his 'faith' resurrect him? Or if a brother or sister be naked, and destitute of daily food, and one of you say to them,'Go in peace, warm yourselves, and be full,' and you do not give them the necessities of the body, what is the use? So also faith alone, without works, is dead. For a man may say, yyou have faith and I have works; show to me your faith that is without works and I will show to you my faith by my works."...
James seems to say to act as though we live by Torah? What do you guys make of that one?
#15 Apr 22, 2013
'Torah of perfect freedom'. Jesus said if we abide in His word that such discipleship makes us free. Seems to go together well to me...but Bobby may have another idea:-)
#16 Apr 22, 2013
Odd too that James didn't use this as an opportunity to say the Torah was nailed to the cross:-)
#17 Apr 22, 2013
It is still in force for you, but not for me.
#18 Apr 22, 2013
I have had many debates with Kenneth Sublet, is a an old hard line cocer. I don't think that even the legalist in his camp like the guy. He hates instruments and says that it is of the devil-goes to wild extremes to prove it.
#19 Apr 22, 2013
There is a reason we have the new testament, however I like the way you have studied the OT because many in the coc totally ignore it.
Jesus lived and died under the old covenant, there was no reason for him to not completely obey it. in fact if he had not become the perfect sacrifice there would be no new covenant. We do not live under the covenant of law we live under the covenant of grace. That is why Paul clearly says we are saved by grace and not by the works of the law. What does "saved by grace mean"?
#20 Apr 22, 2013
Hmm. The AENT in James continues:
You believe that there is one Elohim; you do well; the demons also believe and tremble. Would you know, O weak man, that faith without works is dead? Awraham our father, was not he justified by works in offering his son Yitzchak upon the altar? Do yo realize that his faith aided his works, and that by the works of his faith was rendered complete? And the Scripture was fulfilled which says:'Awraham believed in Elohim, and it was credited to him for righteousness" and he was called the Friend of Elohim. You see that by works a man is justified and not by faith alone. So also Rahab the harlot, was she not justified by works when she entertained the spies and sent them forth by another way? As the body without the spirit is dead, so faith without works is dead."
What does 'saved by faith' mean?;-)
Have a good evening Bobby:-)
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