I don’t know if anyone will be even remotely interested in reading this post, but I wanted to write it :] I am not religious but I am really tired of him not getting his facts straight and needlessly attacking decent people for no reason, and on false grounds. I see people do this all the time. It seems to me they think they’re so clever and that they’ve found the perfect argument to put all Christians in place yet it’s so unbelievably ridiculous it’s not even worth face palming whenever I see this argument anymore. The Bible is extremely complex. It’s a book written by multiple people over a period of thousands of years. Whether you’re Christian or not, I think it’s silly to believe you know all about it.
First of all, what Greg is referring to is from the Old Testament and therefore the Old Covenant and the Law (the five first books of the Old Testament that explains the rules and Laws the Jews were to live under). The Law was specifically written for the Jews. Christians weren’t around yet, as Jesus had not arrived and done his thing. Christians were never meant to live by the Law (Colossians 2:14) in order to become righteous to be able to connect with God but instead they have been called to live by faith due to Jesus Christ.
For anyone with knowledge in the Bible, feel free to correct me if I’m being incorrect as I do not claim to be an expert on this subject.
Let me try and explain it to you Greg. A Christian who doesn’t live by the Law (which, like I said, you’ll find in the five first books of the Bible - Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numeri and Deuteronomium and which is also what you are referring to in this post) is actually a Christian living by what the Bible says. The reason being is that when Jesus came and died and was resurrected on the third day, he did that to create a way for human beings to connect with God without having to go through all the trouble the high priests had to do back in the Old Testament and the Old Covenant (the Law). With this New Covenant (through the actions of Jesus), people would be able to connect with God through faith and not through actions.
That means, Christians don’t have to live by the Law to be able to become righteous (Romans 3:21-31) and in that be able to connect with God. Now, due to what Jesus did on the cross, Christians can become righteous through his actions meaning all they need is faith in what he did for them, and that’s it (Romans 10:9). One reason the Law was there in the first place was to make us realize our need for salvation (Galatians 3:24), because no one can live up to the Law, except Jesus (Galatians 3:22 explains the promise that was made and that people were awaiting).
4 But when the fullness of the time came, God sent forth His Son, born of a woman, born under the Law, 5 so that He might redeem those who were under the Law, that we might receive the adoption as sons.
Translation: Jesus was born as a Jew, to live under the Law. Jesus is the only one who could become righteous by fulfilling the Law (no human could actually do that, James 2:8) and therefore, he could redeem those who are under the law when he died for them, and was resurrected.
Let me give you a few examples from the New Testament that explains how when Jesus died and was resurrected the New Covenant was brought into place and actions were no longer needed to become righteous, but simply faith. The starting of the New Covenant (righteous through faith, not actions) is also where Christianity begins.
18 And He said to them, “Are you so lacking in understanding also? Do you not understand that whatever goes into the man from outside cannot defile him, 19 because it does not go into his heart, but into his stomach, and is eliminated?” Thus He declared all foods clean.
See, they can eat whatever they want.
16 “This is the covenant that I will make with them after those days, saith the Lord: I will put My laws into their hearts, and in their minds will I write them; 17 and their sins and iniquities will I remember no more.”
18 Now where remission of these is, there is no more offering for sin.
See, no more offering animals or anything of that sort.
If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone.
See, no fighting or killing people or anything along those lines.
You see what matters now is faith, not the actions you are referring to that are part of the Old Covenant (meaning living by the Law). I’ll show you why that is:
4 You who are trying to be justified by the law have been alienated from Christ; you have fallen away from grace. 5 For through the Spirit we eagerly await by faith the righteousness for which we hope. 6 For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision nor uncircumcision has any value. The only thing that counts is faith expressing itself through love.
23 But before faith came, we were kept in custody under the law, being shut up to the faith which was later to be revealed. 24 Therefore the Law has become our tutor to lead us to Christ, so that we may be justified by faith. 25 But now that faith has come, we are no longer under a tutor. 26 For you are all sons of God through faith in Christ Jesus. 27 For all of you who were baptized into Christ have clothed yourselves with Christ. 28 There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free man, there is neither male nor female; for you are all one in Christ Jesus. 29 And if you belong to Christ, then you are Abraham’s descendants, heirs according to promise.
For in the gospel the righteousness of God is revealed—a righteousness that is by faith from first to last, just as it is written: “The righteous will live by faith.”
There’s so much more I could say about this but I want to keep it fairly short (which probably failed). Like I said, I’m not religious but I do like knowing things. I don’t know why Greg feels entitled to decide who is a good Christian and not, based on lack of knowledge. It makes no sense.
I don’t care what religion you are part of. I have friends who are Christians, Muslims and of many other religious beliefs and they are all good people, in fact most of them are amazing people who has made it a fundamental part of their life to help people less fortunate and to take care of those who are vulnerable and alone. Many of them see joy in the simple things and are grateful for what they have. Many of them share an attitude of not taking things for granted and to have a hopeful outlook on the future. We may not share religious beliefs, but there are a lot of things about my religious friends that I could learn from.
Within every religion there will be groups of people who do all the wrong things for all the wrong reasons, and those are worth criticizing. Not everyday Christians who didn’t harm a soul with their religious beliefs.