To Torah or not to Torah?Posted: August 23, 2015
As I said, I want to continue updating as much as possible. I will hopefully make this into a short video also since I’m much more eloquent when I have my thoughts laid out in text.
One of the big studies that I had taken on around last summer 2014 was the idea of the Torah for new covenant believers and whether or not it is continuing for today for true followers of the Messiah. I ran into a fellow unitarian named Matthew Janzen and he challenged me to read his book on the topic. That book is actually available free in PDF format on his website(or was last I knew) called “Learning to Love His Law.” It can be seen here http://www.ministersnewcovenant.org/books.html
At that time, I knew after coming out of the trinity and even recently the idea of eternal torment through study–mostly of the OT and cross-referencing… that I wanted to give this a closer look. But at the same time, I thought I had studied the topic of the Torah in my past well enough that there was no room for budging in my views on this subject. Boy was I wrong. I had planned to be ready to read this book and look into the topic more at that time and correct every mis-use of text I could find in that book. Instead the book rocked me a bit and caused me to think about the subject much more. I continued to look into other ministries regarding the subject, but mainly saw videos from Psalm119 ministries.
It rocked me because this belief has serious consequences one way or the other in reality. I know today’s modern Christianity is a mess. But I’m also aware the Scripture is very cut and dry on certain topics. There’s really no wiggle room with some verses…. there’s no ambiguity.
So one of those verses that I knew very well especially from my open air preaching and conversing with sinners in public was 1 John 2:3-4.
1 John 2:3 And by this we know that we have come to know him, if we keep his commandments. 4 Whoever says “I know him” but does not keep his commandments is a liar, and the truth is not in him,
John wrote this, right? John was an Israelite, right? So what would John make of this verse in his views… what does “commandments” refer to in his views being raised on the Tanakh(OT)? I can only think it would mean the Torah the more I studied this subject.
But there are even more difficult verses than this one in the same epistle…
1 John3:4 Everyone who makes a practice of sinning also practices lawlessness; sin is lawlessness. 5 You know that he appeared in order to take away sins, and in him there is no sin. 6 No one who abides in him keeps on sinning; no one who keeps on sinning has either seen him or known him. 7 Little children, let no one deceive you. Whoever practices righteousness is righteous, as he is righteous. 8 Whoever makes a practice of sinning is of the devil, for the devil has been sinning from the beginning.
This one basically says if you keep on sinning you’ve not known him(Jesus). So if sin according to John refers to the Torah, I’ve been in continual sin since I rejected a continual learning of the Torah no matter how many things I’d stopped doing in the past.
There’s obviously a lot more to this topic than just these few verses, but the point is this has severe consequences one way or the other. And it rocked me, more than even coming out of the trinity. I hope to continue studying this, fleshing it out and questioning it. But I have a lot of questions as I am coming to believe this is likely the right view now. Mainly based on simplicity of the fact that following Jesus means having the same God as him, and doing what he did. Jesus kept the Torah, and did not sin. So if we follow him, should that not be the same for us now(except for the fact that we have all sinned)?