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Woe to those that for gaining members and building churches lie to prospect unbelievers about becoming Christians indicating they do not have to adopt all of the transcendent spiritual principles, morality and ethics in God’s Law (Habakkuk 2:12-14)! You are deceived and deceiving people!1 You will not go unpunished as one that misrepresents the faith of Jesus Christ who perfectly fulfilled God’s written Law and died on the cross to save us from every thought, attitude, word, deed and omission God in it declares is sin (Matthew 5:17-20; Mark 9:42-48; Galatians 1:6-10; 2 Peter 2:1-3; Jude 3-5). Christians are called out of the world to God to live on purpose to please Him and do His will!2
After Adam’s disobedience to His single command in Eden and punishing him (Genesis 2:15-17, 3:6, 17-19), God in amazing longsuffering progressively made known His Kingdom’s transcendent spiritual principles, morality and ethics to his descendants through judging them. He judged Cain after warning sin was near in his murderous anger and destroyed the world in the flood in part for its violence; instructing Noah and his sons to treat man’s life as precious. He also destroyed Sodom and Gomorrah for gross sexual sin (Genesis 4:1-12, 6:11-13, 9:1-7, 19:4-25). God worked this way until He spoke and wrote His Law with Moses (Deuteronomy 4:1-14, 31:9-13, 24-26; Romans 5:12-14).
Though His written Law was given to Israel, the surrounding Gentile nations with them were to admire the righteousness of and live by it. Alas though, the righteous Law condemned men because they could not keep it. Nevertheless, it stood exposing mankind’s depravity and inability to be saved from the sin it revealed that enslaved them and frustrated their best efforts to live it out (Romans 7:7-23). But God knowing all of this, already had a plan in place to make the Law a “tutor” that would bring men to and save us through faith in His “Son,” Jesus Christ, by whom He has spoken in a final way to the world (Romans 3:10-31, 7:24-8:4, 10:11-13; Galatians 3:19-4:7; Hebrews 1:1-5, NKJV).
Thus, it is true no one has to keep Jewish specific aspects of the Law such as circumcision, the Sabbath, dietary regulations, rituals or the seven Annual Feasts to be saved. Born again Gentiles in Jesus Christ do not have to keep these as part of our faith and its practice either. However, our observant Jewish Christian brethren keep the God ordained covenant requirements such as circumcision, the Sabbath, rituals and seven Annual Feasts in the written Law as part of their ethnic identity and heritage. The Lord, His apostles and elders in the first century church at Jerusalem settled all of this once and for all (Mark 7:14-19; Acts 13:26-39, 15:1-31; Galatians 2:1-3:9, 5:1-15).
Evident in the consensus decree of the Jerusalem Church Council is that the transcendent spiritual principles, morality and ethics of God’s Law are to be honored in the living of all Christians--Jew and Gentile! Indeed, God by the Holy Spirit puts His laws in the minds and writes them on the hearts of all who are saved by grace through faith in Christ as part of His New Covenant so that we cannot claim ignorance or have any excuse for our disobedience (2 Corinthians 3:1-6; Hebrews 8:7-13). The fact that His transcendent spiritual principles, morality and ethics also appear in God’s written Law communicated to Israel in commandments, ordinances etc. does not nullify them!3
Just like Israel, Christians are called out of Egypt (the world, if you will) to be royal ‘“priests,’” ‘“a holy nation’” and “His own special people” in the Promised Land of God’s Kingdom reign (Exodus 19:3-6; 1 Peter 2:9-10, NKJV). As He spoke to Israel, so, He speaks to us saying, ‘“I am the LORD your God. According to the doings of the land of Egypt, where you dwelt, you shall not do; and according to the doings of the land of Canaan, where I am bringing you, you shall not do; nor shall you walk in their ordinances. You shall observe My judgments and keep My ordinances to walk in them: I am the LORD your God,’” (Leviticus 18:1-5, NKJV). Do you hear Him, professed Christian?4
From the forgoing eternally transcendent spiritual principle of faithfulness to God to issues of morality such as sexual purity and ethics to include just measurements, all appear in the written Law He gave Israel (Leviticus 18:6-20:27). As Christ exemplified, love for the Father and Him is our motive for walking in obedience to His transcendent spiritual principles, morality and ethics embodied in the written Law (John 8:28-29, 14:15, 21-24, 31). In so doing, we serve as preserving “salt” and illuminating “light” for those we live among and “glorify” God (Matthew 5:13-16, NKJV)! If however, we do as those we live among, for example bow to idols, practice sexual immorality and greedily cheat folk while refusing to repent, then, as Israel of old, punishment is the end (Jeremiah 4-5).5,6
1 Read the two-part post that begins September 23, 2018, Let’s Talk Legalism, under the category, Instruction. It is a related and important background supplement
to this one.
2 This is the life cause of every aspiring strong man and great woman of God in the image of Christ I write about in my book, The Strong Man Of God: Back To Ba-
sics. Obtain a Hard or Soft Cover or E-Book Edition of the book along with the companion Strong Man Of God Men’s Group Study and Great Woman Of God
Women’s Group Study in the Strong Man Store, among internet booksellers and brick and mortar bookstores.
3 This lie has been planted by Satan and widely spread over the centuries such that much confusion and discord exists in the Body of Christ because of it. Chris-
tians are to highly esteem and fulfill through obedience every transcendent spiritual principle, moral and ethical instruction of God in His whole Word even stumb-
ling and fumbling as we go, but receiving His forgiveness after our appropriate confession and repentance (1 John 1:9-2:2).
4 Don’t miss God’s prohibition of walking in the ordinances of the worldly nation, state, county, city or religion that directly conflict with His! Is there a price to pay for
this? Yes! Faithful Christians have been paying the price for obeying God’s Word in whatever form it has taken up to and including martyrdom since Christ in the
first century A.D. warned about and experienced it followed by His apostles and many disciples up to this very hour all over the world (Matthew 10:16-39; John 15:
18-16:4, 18:1-19:30; Acts 4:1-22, 5:12-42, 6:8-7:60).
5 Idolatry, sexual immorality and unjust measures (producers are shrinking product amounts while charging the same or a greater price) with other wickedness has
permeated and overtaken our society at this hour. Professed Christians are supposed to stand out against the backdrop of such a corrupt and consequently crum-
bling society, but are found among the wicked in no few numbers as not only the prophet Jeremiah witnessed of Judah, but others too (see for instance, Micah 3,
7:1-4). Because professed Christian men and pastors are well represented among those practicing sexual immorality which also involves pornography and mastur-
bation (see the Barna.com article), the Lord led me to devote an Appendix in The Strong Man Of God: Back To Basics to help deal with these from a biblical world-
6 Even so, the Lord has His merciful hand of deliverance extended to His wayward sheep as seen in our latest Strong Man Of God Online Rally, Return To The Lord,
Christians can watch on our YouTube Channel.
True to the epilogue of a literary work, the Lord leads me to provide some hopefully clarifying and helpful additional information on some issues not more fully presented or addressed at all in the three-part post, Jacob, God Named Israel, under the category, The Cause, just concluded June 18, 2023. In doing so, I am being especially sensitive to help those who have only recently become Christians and aspiring strong men of God in the image of Christ to develop a basic understanding of our God; His ‘“thoughts’” and ‘“ways’” which ‘“are not’” and infinitely ‘“higher’” than ours (Isaiah 55:8-9, NKJV).1 He is after all, God Almighty who made us and not the other way around (Isaiah 40:12-26)!
First, God is sovereign. This means He is the highest authority in all of existence (Psalm 9:1-2; Isaiah 44:6). Whatever He chooses to do in Heaven and His creation is His business for which He has no obligation to give an account to anyone. In accord with the foregoing, God’s election of Jacob over his fraternal twin, Esau, to be the heir of the covenant of promises made to their forefather, Abraham, and father, Isaac, was His sovereign business He does not have to explain nor does anyone have the right to question (Romans 9:6-21)! That said, neither Ishmael nor Esau rejected as heirs of the covenant of promises went unblessed (Genesis 17:18-22, 27:38-40; Deuteronomy 2:1-5).
Also, concerning Esau, Jacob and their divergent interests and dispositions, I was led by the Lord to point out Esau’s wild outdoorsman persona passed off as prototype manhood by some in the Christian men’s movement is not biblical.2 Truly, no portrait of manhood coming from the will of sinful men (and there are many) finds favor as a preference with God our Creator. The portrait of manhood God designed and exalts begins and ends in His Son, Jesus Christ! For this cause, more important than any manhood persona devised by men or what we do as responsibilities in all other roles of biblical manhood is who we are as “sons of God” in Christ’s “image” (Romans 8:12-30, NKJV)!
Second, Jacob came by his use of deceit in his affairs honestly from both Abraham and Isaac (Genesis 12:10-20, 26:6-11).3 How could God be so favorable to such men? How can God be so gracious to all sinners including us saved through the blood of Christ, the promised Seed of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob? Besides being back to His sovereignty and the fact He can choose to work with any sinful man He wills, you have conveniently forgotten the patriarchs were saved by faith as we are (Romans 3:20-4:25; Galatians 3:15-18). So, if God had not interacted with sinful men, none of us would be here because as Scripture shows, He would have destroyed all by now (Genesis 6:5-8)!
Third, Jacob’s attitude toward Leah in what amounted to a forced marriage was not right, but understandable in the sinful flesh. He did not love Leah, but mechanically fulfilled his marital expectations including sleeping with her. God did not make Jacob love her as He does not force us to love Him! Instead, He intervened for and blessed Leah with fertility while making Rachel infertile during the first fourteen years of the polygamous marriage. Too, He worked in the mess Jacob had made from failing to seek Him to serve His purposes and grow him as He does with us. Meanwhile, the Lord also took Rachel from him without apology as she died giving birth to only their second child.
Fourth, incestuous polygamy was dealt with in this year’s Mother’s Day post.4 As noted then, marrying two sisters became sin and all of the sexual sins that come up during our examination of Jacob were later addressed with his descendants and the world through the one and only written Law God gave them. Marriage to sisters was forbidden in Leviticus 18:18. Raping an unmarried virgin and sex with the wife of one’s father both arise in the final Jacob, God Named Israel post (Genesis 34:1-2, 35:21-22a). God’s commands about these two issues are found written one after the other in Deuteronomy 22:28-30.5 His perpetual moral standards in these and all the commands of the written Law are integrated into the New Testament as well (Romans 1:18-32; 1 Corinthians 5, 6:9-20).
Finally, among the ways I was taught and built up by the Lord writing as a focus on Jacob of the three Jewish patriarchs, is having a greater appreciation for the end of the journey. Abraham, followed by Isaac and Jacob appeared on God’s generational stage performing their parts ultimately in the drama of His plan from eternity to redeem fallen mankind through their greatest Descendant, the Lord Jesus Christ, then died. How the sons and family of each patriarch gathered to and buried them touched me deeply. Giving me a right now, application, the Lord took pioneer Christian broadcaster, Pat Robertson, 93, home during these posts. He was clearly a patriarch to his family, those at CBN, other ministries he founded and many Christians during his time on God’s stage.6
1 While acknowledged, nowhere in the Bible will one find God being okay with weak and feeble devotion to Him! To the end of helping professed Christian men passionately
press to “be strong in the Lord” as He wills, I wrote the book, The Strong Man Of God: Back To Basics (Ephesians 6:10, NKJV). Its Hard and Soft Cover or E-Book Edi-
tions as well as companion Strong Man Of God Men’s Group Study are available in the Strong Man Store, among internet booksellers and brick and mortar bookstores.
2 Read the June 4, 2023 part one post, Jacob, God Named Israel, under the category, The Cause.
3 Despite all of the good God did through the patriarchs Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, they left a legacy of using deceit in situations especially of fear with their descendants
(technically, Abraham did not tell the whole truth which is still deceit--see Genesis 20). Beyond what was noted in the June 18, 2023 post about the use of deceit by the
“sons of Jacob” after the rape of their sister and making him with all the rest of the family believe Joseph had been killed and eaten by an animal (Genesis 34:13-29, 37:
23-35, NKJV), it has played a role in their biblical history and attempted even to the face of God in Christ (Exodus 2:23-25; John 8:31-33).
4 See footnote 5 in the May 14, 2023 post, Motherhood: A Female’s Greatest Gift, under the category, Biblical Worldview.
5 No one guilty of sin before the written Law got away with anything! Reuben, Simeon and Levi are examples of those who received enduring divine judgment from the lips
of their father, Jacob, for their sins (Genesis 49:3-7). And note the fear of retribution in all of his guilty sons concerning their brother, Joseph (Genesis 42:18-24, 50:15-21).
6 CBN stands for Christian Broadcasting Network.
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