Good Question...


On...Did NT believers mix law and grace?



On Fri, 3 Nov 1995 YYYYYYYY wrote:

question:

In Acts 21:18-26 James and the Jews who believe both keep the Law and make offerings for purification.

What value is the Cross if the Law and offerings must continue?

I am personally convinced that the actions in Act 21 do NOT imply that James & Co. believed that the Law 'had to be kept'...the context of the passage was about 'keeping the peace' within Jerusalem...for Jewish Christians to keep the Law (having learned that it was BOTH insufficient for salvation--Galatians; AND that it was a wonderful memorial to the Christ--Book of Hebrews) it would have been NOT a matter of 'earning salvation apart from the Cross' but a way to celebrate the OT Messiah (like we do in the Lord's supper) and a way to 'relate to' the traditional Jews--like Paul's statement in I Cor 9:20--for evangelism purposes.

So, I don't think it was seen as 'necessary' to be right with God--OR the message to the Gentiles would HAVE HAD to HAVE BEEN different altogether!

Some say for the Jews the Law must always be keep.

I don't agree with them whoever they are...Paul says in I Cor 9:20 sometimes he was 'under the Law', sometimes Not--depending on who he was trying to reach...in NO cases did he believe justification came by the Law (Galatians)...

Was James wrong in keeping the Law?

probably not, for the peace-keeping and evangelism reasons above...

Many Jewish Christians today still keep the Law; can you be a Christian and still believe the Law is necessary?

Not necessary for salvation...maybe, necessary to your evangelistic field...but NOT necessary for salvation..."By the works of the Law shall no flesh be justified"...the issue is trust...what is being trusted as the means to God--The Cross, or the CROSS plus Something! The Law (some of the traditions at least--e.g. Passover celebration is beautiful picture of Christ) can be very helpful to a believer...but if one is depending on the Law (their obedience to it), they are 'cut off from grace' (Gal.)

[Also remember that the Law STILL has its function to show the world that we cannot achieve perfection AT ALL--I Timothy 1:8ff.] hope this helps...glenn



The Christian ThinkTank...[http://www.Christian-thinktank.com] (Reference Abbreviations)