Tuesday, 14 September 2021
It's That Simple Galatians - 5
We are continuing our series on Galatians 3. Paul reaffirms that the promise made to Father Abraham was made according to grace and not by works. He then asks a question, a very important question. Galatians 3:19a Then why the Torah?
Many others have asked the same question. If we have the promise by grace, then why do we need Law? For all those asking the same question, Paul provides an answer in the very same verse. (I love it when he answers his own questions.) Galatians 3:19b It was added because of wrongdoings. Exactly, we need God's Torah so we will know right from wrong. Without Torah we don't even need forgiveness because we never know we have done wrong.
It boils down to this question, "How do we know what sin is?" Many people feel like sin is whatever they say it is. They think,"If it makes you feel guilty, it must be sin." Side note: every sinner says, "I only do what doesn't make me feel bad (or too bad)." End SN. But God has a very different definition of sin. 1 John 3:4 Everyone practicing sin also practices lawlessness - indeed, sin is lawlessness. I hate the TLV on that translation. I much prefer the straightforward KJV ... 1 John 3:4 Whosoever committeth sin transgresseth also the law: for sin is the transgression of the law.
As Mark Levin says, "It's that simple." Without Torah (to tell us right from wrong) there is no sin. Jacob (James) 4:17 Therefore whoever knows the right thing to do and does not do it - for him it is sin. We only know the "right thing to do" by God's word, not by our feelings or what makes us feel bad.
Rabbi Trail: Just to remind you, the author of the Book of Jacob (James) was the half-brother of Yeshua who led the early community of believers in Jerusalem. Jacob's name was changed to James in the Bible to honor King James I, who paid for (authorized) the King James Version of the Bible, so they changed Jacob to James and honored the King who was paying the bills. End RT.
The next phrase in Galatians 3:19 is where we will leave off for today. Galatians 3:19c until the Seed would come. Is Paul saying we only need Torah until the "Seed would come?" Not at all, but that with the Seed (Yeshua) we also get the Holy Spirit. Hear the words of Yeshua ... John 14:16 I will ask the Father, and He will give you another Helper so He may be with you forever. John 16:13 But when the Spirit of truth comes, He will guide you into all the truth.
And what is "truth?" What you think is true? Certainly not! The answer is in Yeshua's prayer, John 17:17 Make them holy in the truth. Your word is truth. See, it goes right back to the Word which is the Torah. It is not "done away" in the New Testament. Yeshua has the last word today. Matthew 5:17-18 "Do not think that I came to abolish the Torah or the Prophets! I did not come to abolish, but to fulfill. Amen, I tell you, until heaven and earth pass away, not the smallest letter or serif shall ever pass away from the Torah until all things come to pass. News flash ... heaven and earth have not yet passed away. God's Word is still the path of righteousness.
Rabbi Michael Weiner,