Monday, March 1, 2010

Rules... for them or for us?

Today's readings: Judges 19-21; Luke 16

It’s interesting to read the Old Testament and New Testament laws, and to differentiate between what was for the Israelite people in that time, versus what still holds valid for us as Christians to this day. In Luke 16 Jesus “protests against any design to invalidate the law.”* In other words, he protests against any one who would try to make the law any less than valid and applicable. In particular, he is very clear about his feelings on divorce. He doesn’t like it, and says that anyone who divorces and remarries commits adultery (vs. 18). Yet, I have seen a vast amount of divorcing and remarrying in the church. How do I come to terms with something like this, when the Bible seems to be so clear on this stance?

Matthew Henry, one of my favorite Bible commentators, had this to say about Jesus’ stance on divorce: “Christ will not allow divorces, for his gospel is intended to strike at the bitter root of men’s corrupt appetites and passions, to kill them, and pluck them up; and therefore they must not be so far indulged as that permission did indulge them, for the more they are indulged the more impetuous and headstrong they grow.”*

Henry believes that Jesus was very against divorce. Yet, why, then doesn't the church heed this law?

And divorce is only one issue. There are other rules, both Old Testament and New Testament that seem so clear and forthright, yet the church as a whole ignores them today. Perhaps they see the rules as “outdated” or “invalid,” but Jesus clearly had something to say. He clearly saw some of these laws as important enough to mention.

So what do we do? How do we find the true answers in this present world of compromise?

* Henry, Matthew. "Commentary on Luke 16." Blue Letter Bible. 1 Mar 1996. 2010. 1 Mar 2010.
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