After explaining the context in which Paul advocated going from house to house, John Ritenbaugh reiterates that Paul, who understands clearly that God alone calls (John 6:44), makes his initial contact with non-believers in public places (synagogue and forum), going later to private dwellings by invitation only. Chapter 15 …
John Ritenbaugh focuses upon the intent or purpose of the scripture in Deuteronomy 23:2 prohibiting offspring from illegitimate unions (often carrying psychological baggage and irreversible physical damage) from holding offices of responsibility in physical Israel for ten generations. Acts 14 begins with the people of the …
Through Acts 1-15, God (primarily through the work of Peter, Paul and James) has removed His work out of the Judaistic mold, creating the Israel of God (the church) designed to spread to the Gentiles. Though certain ceremonial and civil aspects of the law were (for a time) suspended, the Law of God was never suspended, …
John Ritenbaugh reiterates that the Sabbath Command (as well as all of the Ten Commandments) was made for both Jews and Gentiles (all of mankind). Throughout the book of Acts, Gentiles are faithfully keeping the Sabbath along with the Jews. Paul's insistence that a relationship with God could not be established by keeping the …
Hebrews emphasizes that spiritual growth and glorification depends on an individual's relationship with Christ, the centerpiece of the Book of Hebrews.
Paul never taught any Jew to forsake the Law of Moses, but he did warn against Pharisaical additions for the expressed purpose of attaining justification.
The yoke grievous to bear (Acts 15:10) was not God's law, but an entire package of Pharisaic regulations that had been elevated to the level of God's law.
The last days of the Worldwide Church of God demonstrated a dearth of righteous judgment. God expects us to judge wisely within the parameters of His Law.
Early converts from Judaism claimed to accept the Law but had difficulty accepting the Lawgiver. Today, many claim to accept Christ, but will not accept His Law.
Love, justice, mercy, and fidelity (the weightier matters of the law) God desires more than meticulous, mechanical religiosity.
Protestantism alleges that God's law is 'done away.' What Scripture shows, though, is that some aspects are not required presently, but God's law is eternal.
Parts of God's law are not presently required, yet not 'done away." Paul took a vow that required animal sacrifice. Ezekiel 34-48 shows the sacrificial law observed.
The book of Hebrews' audience consisted of converts from Judaism, suffering estrangement from family and community, excommunicated from the temple.
We need to learn to judge in a godly manner, putting merciful restraints on our tendency to condemn or jump to conclusions. One size does not fit all.
While the Jerusalem Council did rule that Gentiles were not obligated to be physically circumcised, the ruling did not extend to Israelites.
The socio-cultural milieu before the writing of Hebrews created difficulties for the Jewish converts to the Gospel, who were deemed to be traitors.
Even as Hebrews prepared the first century church for persecution, so it is also relevant to today's church as it faces an increasing assault on God's law.
We dare not 'do away' anything that is part of God's mind, or we will not be in His image. Acts 15 did not give Gentiles exemption from keeping God's Law.
The Acts 15 decision did not do away with God's law, but solved the question of circumcision and the misconception that it was a recipe for salvation.
The yoke of bondage Paul refers to in Galatians was a combination of the code of regulations added by the Pharisees and Gnostic ritualism, not God's Law.
We often spend so much time engaged in our present-day trials that we fail to understand and learn from the experiences of Christians of the past.
Charles Whitaker, examining Christ's statement that the law will not pass away until all has been fulfilled, indicates that the Law of God will change only when the preconditions Christ established in Matthew 5:18 have been met. Paul asks and answers the question, "Why do we need the law in the first place?" in …
In Galatians, Paul took issue with the Halakhah, not God's word. Halakhah was a massive collection of human opinion that placed a yoke on its followers.
God designed the sermon of Hebrews to motivate God's people, who are going through the same turmoil as those living in 65 AD, facing persecution from society.
John Ritenbaugh reviews the many New Testament scriptures where God unambiguously promises His people an inheritance (Acts 20:31-32; 26:16-18, Ephesians 1:3-14; 5:3-5; Colossians 1:12; 3: 11-15). The immense motivating value of that promise lies in its power to consistently hold in the face of His people the facts that 1.) He …
Circumcision was the sign God gave Abraham indicating that his descendants would ascend to greatness, acquiring physical and spiritual blessings.
The days, months, and times of Galatians 4:10 do not refer to God's Holy Days (which are not weak or beggarly), but to pagan rites the Galatians came out of.