Recently I was involved in conversations in the blogosphere regarding Torah and its relevance to Gentiles. Many said it has little to no bearing on us. Several times I shared this with my rabbi at Torah study and was shored in my belief that yes, there is one Torah for all humanity.
Now before anyone jumps up and starts pointing out differences, I realize there are differences in the Torah between men and women, Levites and Israel, and cohen and the high priest, just to name a few.) But the reason my heart is breaking is because of a letter I read from Boaz Michael of FFOZ.
It seems there are prominent Messianic Jewish organizations in the land of Israel that teach the whole purpose of the Torah was to point to Yeshua; that the Torah was never meant to be literally observed. And there is another prominent Messianic organization teaching that even the moral laws of the Torah are abolished.
While it might seem crazy, it makes sense. When you start to question/remove one point of Torah, eventually the whole thing is up for debate. Of course, this leads to everyone doing right in his own eyes, which leads to all sorts of debauchery even among believers. I’ve observed this with my own eyes – believers rejoicing over gay marriage; incest, fornication, and abuse are proliferate in the body as we look the other way. This must not be!
The time is short. Messiah is coming soon. We must pray for unity in the body of Messiah. How else will the world find their way to Him?
First we must realize that Torah means ‘instruction’. And I say the Torah – God’s instruction – is still relevant.
- God’s instructions for festivals are still relevant.
- God’s instructions about what is (and what isn’t) food is still relevant.
- God’s instructions about marriage and family are still relevant.
- God’s instructions about justice are still relevant.
- God’s instructions about modesty and clothing are still relevant.
- Even God’s instructions about sacrifices are still relevant.
How can I say that? Because Yeshua is our everlasting sacrifice.
When we sin (and admit it, we still do) it is the Blood of the Lamb that cleanses us. His sacrifice is so different from that of goats and bulls because what He accomplished is beyond our comprehension. Somehow, His blood continues to cleanse, where goats and bulls were only a one shot deal. And we still need that cleansing if we want to approach an All Holy God and live. So God’s instructions about sacrifices are still relevant.
The other day I came across this article, ‘What it Means to Receive the Torah’ and I encourage you to read it. It is short and to the point. It is about Torah from a Jewish perspective. For instance, “The Torah teaches us not only to be good, but to be holy as well. What does it mean to be holy? Holiness means being separate.” Sounds a lot like Peter’s letter, doesn’t it?
And what about, “Receiving the Torah is to accept that there is a right way and a wrong way to conduct one’s life.” Could this have been penned by Paul?
The author also talks about the importance of unity and love. Sounds a lot like our Messiah and His emissary, John, does it not?
God’s Torah is relevant because it is His standard of righteousness and holiness, whether we follow it or not. My heart breaks for the body of Messiah who miss out on the opportunity to be holy as He is holy. And my heart especially breaks for those that teach others to walk away from God’s instructions.