Acts 15 Explained (The mainstream church has lied to you!)

Is YHVH Elohim’s instructions in righteousness or Torah an unbearable yoke that Christian are free from making it now alright to murder, steal, lie, commit adultery and break the Sabbath? That’s what some misguided people want you to believe!

Oy vey! There is so much confusion, misunderstanding and false teaching out there in the church world. For example, the mainstream church has taught (or brainwashed) its constituents into believing that according to Acts 15, Gentiles are free from all of the requirements of the Torah-law of Moses, except for the four things mentioned in Acts 15:20.

What this means is that I guess it’s now all right for Gentiles to murder, steal, lie, worship idols, violate the Sabbath and you don’t have to tithe either (oops, there goes the pastor’s salary, retirement and building fund down the drain, and denominations are a thing of the past, as well, with their financial base gone), as long as we do the four requirements stipulated by the apostles in Acts 15:20. That means we have to do kosher slaughter of clean animals and make sure we get the blood out of the meat. Oh, I just remembered, the church doesn’t even teach these basic things, much less practice them. Now I’m really confused…so what’s really going on here? Well, it’s a heart of man thing! Paul summed it up in Romans 8:7,

Because the carnal mind is enmity against Elohim: for it is not subject to the law of Elohim, neither indeed can be.

Jeremiah had something to say about this as well,

The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked: who can know it? (Jer 17:9)

Human nature hasn’t changed much from the time these words were penned until now. To wit, someone just wrote the following in the comments section of this blog:

I heartily disagree. One need only look to what the Jewish apostles taught their goyim charges (from the Council at Jerusalem – Acts15, specifically verses 28 & 29));

It seemed good to the Holy Spirit and to us not to burden you with anything beyond these essential requirements: You must abstain from food sacrificed to idols, from blood, from the meat of strangled animals, and from sexual immorality. You will do well to avoid these things.

Not a word about the “Law”. Rather listen to what Jesus’ closest friend had to say, “Now then, why do you test God by placing on the necks of the disciples a yoke that neither we nor our fathers have been able to bear?”

Evidently, some feel that they know more than the Holy Spirit, and Peter.

I responded as follows:

Yes, yes, yes, those of us who’ve been around the block a time or two over the past few decades have heard this argument more than a few times. It’s not that someone is claiming to know more than Peter or the Holy Spirit, as you suggest. Rather, it’s that someone is failing to understand the Acts 15 passage in its full context and has defaulted to believing the traditions of men by which the Word of Elohim has been made of non-effect. Please allow me to explain.

First, let me thank you for allowing me to address this sadly misunderstood passage of Scripture that has confused many people and led many folks, such as yourself, to come to a totally wrong and unscriptural conclusion. To take the position you are positing totally contradicts hundreds of other verses in both the OT and NT. Yeshua himself said that the scripture cannot be broken (John 10:35). To say that Scripture contradicts itself is, honestly, to call the Bible a lie and the Author of it a liar. Hard words, but the truth. Sadly, this is the majority position of the mainstream church. YHVH Elohim will straighten out this mess in due time. Many Christian teachers who have taught this and who have led YHVH’s people astray will be proven to be false and will have to answer before Elohim’s throne of judgment for it.

I will post the counter argument to your position on my blog. Those who are not afraid of the truth can read the truth here:

Now here’s my commentary on Acts 15.

Acts 15:1–29, See notes at Matt 11:29. (Posted below)

Acts 15:1, Custom of Moses. This is based on Exodus 12:48 which requires all males to be circumcised before being allowed to partake of Passover. To be part of Israel, one had to become circumcised and observe the Passover and all Israel was required to do so (Exod 12:47). Foreigners were forbidden from keeping the Passover (Exod 12:43) until they were circumcised. From this, the Pharisees got the idea that circumcision is a prerequisite for salvation—or inclusion in spiritual family of redeemed Israel. As Paul points out in Romans chapter four, Abraham was justified by faith, not by the rite of circumcision. Therefore, the custom of circumcision as a prerequisite for inclusion within the nation of Israel (a metaphor for salvation) is unique to the law of Moses, and not to the over-arching and eternal principles of the Torah (as demonstrated by the fact that Abraham come into a relationship with YHVH 24 years before being circumcised) to which the law of Moses is subservient. This custom was necessary in order to protect the sanctity and integrity of the physical nation of Israel from foreign and pagan influences and was not prior to or subsequent to the physical nation of Israel intended to be a prerequisite for eternal salvation as Paul, again, makes clear in Romans chapter four.

Acts 15:10, Yoke on the neck. Many Christian commentators teach that Peter is making a reference to the Torah when he speaks of a yoke being put around the neck of the people of Israel meaning that Torah-observance was an impossibility. Yet, Moses told the Israelites that Torah-obedience wasn’t impossible (Deut 30:11–14), and that it would be a source of life to them (v. 19), and would be a source of wisdom and understanding for them, thus eliciting the curiosity of the surrounding nations (Deut 4:6–8). Were Moses and Peter at odds with each other thus violating the unity of Elohim’s Word (John 10:35)? Or was Peter referring to something else other than the Torah-law of Moses? At issue in the Acts 15 Jerusalem council was whether circumcision was a prerequisite for salvation (Acts 15:1). True, the Law of Moses required all male children to be circumcised on the eighth day (Lev 12:2–3), and all males to be circumcised in order for one to partake of Passover (Exod 12:43–49). This later requirement may be construed to mean that circumcision is a prerequisite for salvation, and evidently some of the Pharisees of that day held to this belief. However, in the Testimony of Yeshua, neither Yeshua nor the apostolic writers make salvation dependent on the rite of physical circumcision. This position is correct, since Abraham come into a spiritual relationship with YHVH some 24 years before he was circumcised, as Paul states in Romans chapter four. The emphasis in the Testimony of Yeshua, rather, is placed on circumcision of the heart, which is the higher spiritual principle—even as it was in Moses’ day (Deut 10:16; 30:6)—to which physical circumcision pointed. 

When Peter speaks of a yoke that hindered the Gentiles from coming into the kingdom, to what is he referring? He is referring to the non-biblical concept circulating among some of the Jewish converts to Yeshua that circumcision was a prerequisite to justification leading to salvation, which is something it was never intended to be. 

Many Christians today erroneously think that the yoke Peter was referring to was obedience to the basic requirements of the Torah. Rather, what he was referring to was the customs Moses established (which become known as the law of Moses), which exceed the basic requirements of the Torah. In this case, it was the custom the circumcision as a requirement for inclusion in the nation of Israel and is based on the Passover requirements found in Exod 12:43–49. Elsewhere, Paul makes no mention of the Gentiles needing to be circumcised to become part of Israel, but only a spiritual relationship with Yeshua is required (Eph 2:11–18).

The yoke that Peter is referring to, and as we’ve already noted, is the concept that a man can redeem himself from sin by his own good works including Torah-obedience. If this were true, then this would leave a sinner carrying the yoke of his own sin and the consequences of that sin, which is death—a yoke that no man can bear. For if we seek to be saved through works rather than through the faith in the Messiah, then his sacrifice to pay for our sins is of no benefit to us. This is the context of Peter’s statement in Acts 15:10, for in verse nine he mentions having one’s heart purified by faith (in Messiah’s death for our sins), and in verse 11 he talks about being saved “through the grace of the Lord Yeshua the Messiah.” This is salvation by grace through faith in Yeshua, which is not based on works (of Torah-obedience). Paul refers to this same salvation “formula,” if you will, in Eph 2:8–9. Paul elsewhere reiterates Peter’s idea of a circumcision–works based formula for salvation being a yoke when in Gal 5:1–4 he refers to circumcision for salvation as “a yoke of bondage.”

Acts 15:20, We write to them. These were the four requirements that the apostles imposed on the new converts to Yeshua for coming into the congregation of the saints. This is how the process worked in that day: First the gospel was preached in the streets (outside the church). Second, the Gentiles accepted the gospel message, believed in Yeshua and were baptized. Third, they were invited into the fellowship of the believers. Fourth, they were discipled in the ways of biblical righteousness. As the saying goes, first you catch the fish, then you clean the fish. This  process takes a while. That’s where verse 21 comes into play (see notes at v. 21).

This verse also lists the four requirements the apostles imposed on new converts before they could be admitted into the fellowship of believers. Some of these strictures were culturally specific to that era, such as not eating meat sacrificed to idols. The other three requirements are applicable today and are actually laws from the Torah-law of Moses. These are: abstaining from sexual immorality, and properly butchering meat, and not eating blood. These last two requirements were important elements of the biblical dietary laws as found in the Torah or law of Moses.

Curiously, and hypocritically, many in the mainstream church who use Acts 15 as “proof” that the Torah-law is no longer applicable to believers in Yeshua at the same time totally ignore the four requirements the apostles imposed on Gentiles in this verse. How many Christians actually follow the dietary requirements listed in this verse, which are from the Torah? How many sermons have you heard in the church about koshering your meat to get all the blood out of it before you eat it? So, if one believes that the apostles are freeing believers from the Torah, and all that Gentiles now have to do are these four requirements listed in this verse, then why aren’t Christians at least scrupulously obeying these minimal requirements?

Acts 15:21, Moses…synagogue…every Sabbath. Why did James make this statement? What is he really saying here? What is the relevance to the previous discussion of mentioning that Moses is preached in the synagogue every Sabbath? The inference is that the saints can learn all about the legal requirements of the Torah (the practical aspects of how to love Elohim and one’s neighbor [Mark 12:29–31; Rom 123:8–10], how to love Yeshua [John 14:15], how not to sin [1 John 3:4] and how to walk in righteousness [Ps 119:172], how to know Elohim [1 John 2:3–6]) by going to the synagogue each Sabbath. Why else mention this? If the law was done away with, then what is the relevance of this statement? There is none!

Acts 15:24, Keep the law. The issue here is not whether Torah-obedience is necessary for a redeemed believer, but rather whether circumcision and following the customs of Moses (as opposed to the eternal principles of the Torah) is a prerequisite for salvation.

Matthew 11:29, Take my yoke. This is an invitation to the marriage covenant with Yeshua; to become yoked to him in love, voluntarily through love, not compulsion or fear (see notes at Song 8:6). Here Yeshua is inviting his followers to take on themselves the yoke of the marriage covenant (the New, Renewed or Everlasting Covenant of Jer 31:31, 33 and Heb 8:8); that is, to accept him as their heavenly and everlasting spiritual Bridegroom. This is the yoke of the bondservant to which all the apostolic writers made reference when they called themselves the bond servant of Yeshua. Men have only two choices: Be a bond servant to Satan or to Yeshua. The former leads to judgment against sin which is death, while the latter leads to mercy and forgiveness, deliverance from death and sin through Yeshua resulting in eternal life. The marriage covenant or New/Renewed/Everlasting covenant isn’t one of compulsion (based on the fear of death), but is based on voluntary servitude and is a freewill choice. Love can’t exist under an atmosphere of compulsion, but only when there’s freewill choice. This freewill choice to take on oneself the yoke of Torah is evidenced in the decision of the apostles vis-à-vis the Gentiles inclusion into covenantal relationship with Yeshua and the rest of the believers in Acts 15. The Pharisee believers were compelling the Gentiles to follow the Torah as a prerequisite for salvation and inclusion into the community of believers (Acts 15:1). On the contrary, the apostles made it clear in their verdict that only certain minimum requirements be imposed on the Gentiles to be granted entrance into the community of believers. The Gentiles needed to be drawn into the Torah covenants, not by compulsion or fear, but through invitation and freewill choice based on love. The apostles go on to say in Acts 15:21 that on this basis, the Gentiles will learn to take on the yoke of Torah little-by-little out of love for Elohim and Yeshua their Bridegroom, and not out of fear and compulsion.

 

7 thoughts on “Acts 15 Explained (The mainstream church has lied to you!)

  1. Great teaching Natan, but one question…I never thought of there being both a Torah law and a law of Moses that was custom rather than law. So circumcision isn’t a Torah Law but Law of Moses that is a custom rather than law. How does one tell the difference between what Moses commanded that is a Torah law and what he commanded as his customary law? Referring to this: ” Rather, what he was referring to was the customs Moses established (which become known as the law of Moses), which exceed the basic requirements of the Torah. In this case, it was the custom the circumcision as a requirement for inclusion in the nation of Israel and is based on the Passover requirements found in Exod 12:43–49. “

    • You have put your spiritual magnifying glass upon something that is hard to quantify and can be a bit dicey to explain. I will do why best to elucidate.
      Is there a difference between the Torah and the law of Moses? Technically, no, since the Scriptures use the terms law of Moses and the law (i.e. Torah) interchangeably in many places.
      However, many people think that the law of Moses or the Torah originated with Moses. I have emphatically taught over the years, and the Scripture is clear on the fact, that the Torah didn’t originate with Moses, but from eternity or from heaven where Elohim exists. How can we assert this? This is because the Torah is a reflection of the heart, mind, will and righteous character of Elohim. It is spiritual and is thus eternal as Paul states in Romans 7:14.
      At the same time, and in a sense, Moses is the originator (by the hand of Elohim) of the law of Moses as a opposed to the eternal principles of the Torah, which, again, are a reflection of the heart, will, character, holiness and righteousness of Elohim. What do I mean? Moses is the first person to have written the Torah down (perhaps that’s one reason he needed to be educated in Egypt, so he was capable of such a task). He put the Torah into a form that had not existed before: a national constitution for a physical nation state. For the first time, he codified the Torah or turned it into a written legal code. This was necessary because Israel was now a nation with physical borders and not just a large nomadic family or tribe. As such, Israel needed a system of written laws by which to govern their nation. Therefore, Torah had to be expanded and more clearly defined, if you will, to meet those requirements. The laws of Elohim had to be specifically spelled out and put into a written form. In this form, political leaders, judges, priests and people would know what the law was, so that could be studied, obeyed and adjudicated. Furthermore, the nation could pass no new laws that in any way would contradict the Written Torah, which was the supreme law of the land.
      Consider this. The principles of the Torah are eternal, spiritual and endless because Torah is a reflection of the eternal and infinite mind of the Creator, so it has many applications and possibilities and can be expanded to meet the legal exigencies of a physical nation. None of those applications, however, violate the basic principles of the eternal principles of Torah. For example, the Sabbath is a rest day. Though rules and regulations may be enacted that tell us how to keep the Sabbath, nothing can violate the basic principle of resting on that day.
      The eternal principles of the Torah may also be likened to the Constitution of the U.S., which is the overarching law of the land; no state, county or city government can pass a law that violates the Constitution. They can pass many additional laws, but nothing that goes against or supersedes the Constitution. This is akin to the law of Moses, which was based on or sprung out of the eternal principles of the Torah. It could contain additional legal requirements that would help to rightly govern a physical nation, but the nation could never pass a law that would contradict or invalidate any principle of Torah. For example circumcision was a sign of the Abrahamic Covenant, but under the law of Moses, it became a proof of citizenship in the physical nation of Israel. It was necessary for the protection of the nation and to prevent aliens from coming in and taking over. Those people who went through this physical ordeal were likely serious about wanting to part of Israel. This was a test of the seriousness of their intent. The problem with the believing Pharisees of Acts 15:1 who believed that circumcision was to be a precursor for salvation is that they took the concept of circumcision both as a sign of the Abrahamic Covenant and as a physical act of faith in Elohim, mixed it with the proof of citizenship requirements of the law of Moses and then conflated the two and now made it a salvational requirement for inclusion in the spiritual nation (or body of Messiah) of Israel. Paul corrects this theological error in Romans four and addresses it in Galatians (and elsewhere), and the apostles made a ruling on this issue in Acts 15, as well. Acts 15 was not a verdict on the validity of Torah, as the mainstream Christian church has erroneously made it to be, rather it was a verdict on whether circumcision was a prerequisite for salvation. It was a prerequisite to be a member of the physical nation of Israel, but not for salvation, as Paul states in Romans chapter four.
      Another example where the Torah had to be expanded under the law of Moses was in the area of the inheritance laws. Traditionally, the firstborn son received the lion’s share of his father’s inheritance and was responsible for carrying on the family lineage. That’s following Torah in at its ideal level. However, what if your first born son was out of Elohim’s will (such as Ishmael), or was a profane, rebellious and godless man (such as Esau), or was an immoral and power hungry person (like Reuben who slept with his father’s concubine to affirm the his status as the firstborn leader of his tribe), then what? The birthright would then go to the next best male candidate for the position. Now what if one had no sons? Then what? This is what the daughters of Zelophehad faced in Numbers 36. The Torah had to be amended or expanded to accommodate this situation. Moses sought YHVH on the matter, who gave him instructions on what to do. So ideally, and according to the overarching principles of Torah, the birthright would go to the firstborn son, but humans don’t live in an ideal or perfect world, so sometimes adjustments or exceptions were made and the Zeloophehad’s daughters were able to inherit their father’s estate with certain provisos made. The same thing is true with marriage. Ideally, it’s between one man and one woman for life. Period. But what if you were the leader of a tribe or a king and your wife was barren and she couldn’t bear you a son? Then what? You had to get a son somehow or your tribe and lineage would die out or be destroyed or subsumed by a more powerful neighboring enemy tribe. Today the same conditions don’t exist where if one childless, that’s not the end of the world; they’re nomadic or kingly lineage dies out. As nomads in the ancient Near East, one’s tribe was one’s life and security. One couldn’t exist without that community support and protection; without this, one died. So if one’s wife was barren, what did one do? A man had to take another wife who could bear him a son to continue his lineage. The same was true of a king who had a barren wife. Was having multiple wives (polygamy) YHVH’s ideal situation for marriage? Absolutely not. It caused no end to familial problems, as the Bible so poignantly chronicles in a number of instances. Yet, polygamy became a reality for some men, and the law of Moses accommodated this practice and addresses this issue.
      The same is true of divorce and remarriage. Yeshua states that, again, marriage was between a man and a woman for life from the beginning. Yet because of the hardness of the human heart, some people simply couldn’t continue to live together in marriage, and so the law of Moses permitted divorce and even allowed for remarriage (Mark 10:2–9, cp. Deut 24). This was not the perfect will of Elohim for marriage, but his permissible will, if you will.
      Paul alludes to the good, better and perfect will of Elohim in Romans 12:2. All three are in the will of Elohim, but how much of the time are we ever in his perfect will? What is the perfect will of Elohim? It’s the Torah, which reflects his perfect and righteous character. Are even the best intended humans capable of always walking in the perfect will of Elohim, or walking at the highest level of Torah? Hardly! Though we should always be striving to do the best we can. Life is just plain difficult. That’s where grace comes in! If our hearts are right and we’re doing the best we can, his merciful grace will cover us, as long as we don’t turn his grace into licentiousness or license to sin (i.e. violate the Torah, 1 John 3:4), which is what the church has largely done through its misguided and false teaching about the Torah being abrogated. There isn’t grace for willful disobedience!

      • Natan…I have read this now for the second time and feel much better about my understanding. Thank you…That was no small task answering that question…!

  2. I am totally new to your blog and teaching, but have been studying Hebrew and reading the Parasha Torah readings and studying Hebrew for months myself and found you while trying to find commentary on the Hebrew word “ladder”. As a Gentile believer today, who has become acutely aware of the debt of the church to our father Abraham and our roots in Judaism, I am curious how minutely you follow the Torah. Kosher food? No pork or shellfish are the most obvious examples on a dietary level. Or, do you distinguish dietary and moral law? Not trying to be difficult, but am quite serious. Last year I read a chronological Bible, Old and New “Testaments” simultaneously, and then began the year reading from the Tanakh in Stern’s version. I look forward to following your commentary.

    • Good questions. Thank you for asking. I suspect that others may be wondering the same things.

      Those who have been following this blog for some time will be aware of the fact that I promote a total Torah-pursuant lifestyle as much as is possible in this modern world. So yes, we follow the biblical dietary, keep the seventh day Sabbath, celebrate all the biblical feasts among other things.

      You mention David Stern’s commentary. Generally, this is an excellent reference work and he upholds the validity of Torah and quite brilliantly demonstrates how the church has twisted the teachings of Paul to make him say something that he never said, which puts Paul completely at odds with Yeshua and the rest of Scripture, when it asserts that the Torah has been done away with. Where I disagree with Stern, and where I believe that he contradicts himself is when he says that Gentile believers (a misnomer in itself in the contest of Eph 2:11–19) do not have to follow the Torah. (See his discussion on Acts 15, for example.)

  3. Hi. In reading Acts 15, I see nothing there about requisites for joining the community of believers, although I do see a reference to the question of requisite for salvation. From what do you conclude that the point of the dispute was about being accepted into this community, and, would this refer to the community of messianic (Jewish) believers, or the body of Christ (Jew and/or Gentile) as a whole?

    I read the chapter like this: That circumcision specifically is not required for salvation, but these 4 other things listed are [required], which could lead one to believe that these things, excluding circumcision, ARE required for one’s salvation, though, this of course is not the way I interpret it, as this would preach salvation by works. So, if not that these things are required for salvation, but simply, for general uprightness (relatively speaking), this would seem to indicate that circumcision or anything else is not, which of course wouldn’t seem right to me (especially considering that it would exclude things like murder, theft, etc.), and so, I find this text rather confusing and difficult to interpret/understand.

    So, they’re not required for salvation, but yet, even still, are listed as the ONLY things which are required, for whatever reason it is that they are required. But it is your contention that these things are required, yes, even the ONLY things which are, but only specifically for being a part of the…..Jewish believers in Christ? or believers period (which might include even non-Jewish (Gentile) believers? My issue with this interpretation is that this isn’t really made clear in the text. Rather, it would seem to indicate that they’re saying these are the only things really necessary or essential to uphold, for believers in general.

    Also, is it your contention that this limitation to the scope of moral requisites is only temporary? And what might change this, and when and how would this be determined? Is it your contention that there IS a point in time in which circumcision would become necessary, or required, even if not for salvation per se, only not upon the time of conversion. or joining of this or that (or “THE”) church?

    I would appreciate any input you might be able to offer (and realize that these are no easy questions to answer). Thanks.

    • It is NOT my contention that the four requirements that the apostles listed in Acts 15 for the Gentiles are prerequisites for salvation. I have NEVER made this assertion ever in writing or in speech. These were four things were required for fellowship in the local congregation only. Big difference. Having been a head pastor for 20 years, you can’t just have anyone march in off the streets and begin to fellowship with you. This could destroy your congregation to have an open, demon possessed, sexual pervert walk in, for example. There have to be certain basic requirements. The rules of the house have to be followed. Just like you don’t let just anyone walk into your house like they own the place, and you just don’t share a meal with anyone at your table. I could get explicit and give examples, but hopefully you get the point. You have house rules—certain basic minimal requirements—to protect your wife, kids, you reputation, etc. Same in the church. This goes against the grain of the modern church who invites just anyone and everyone—a come as you are mentality. No! Some folks are so messed up and pagan that they need to be worked with outside the congregational family for awhile before allowed to come in and have fellowship with the sanctified believers. Sadly, the same hypocritical, lying mainstream church that says that the law was done away with, doesn’t even follow these four basic requirements laid out in Acts 15. They are doubly sinful and rebellious in that they trash the Torah and ignore these four requirements, which are rooted in Torah. Did you ever go to a church that followed the principles of these four requirements much less ever mentioned them? I never did, never even heard of one.

      Now to your point about the Gentiles being required to follow the rest of Torah. If this weren’t a requirement, then why does James make the statement that Moses is preached in the synagogue each Shabbat? What’t that all about? Why even say this if what Moses had to say wasn’t important? And then how about Yeshua’s statement in John 14:15, “If you love me, keep my commandments” which is Torah? Or John in 1 John 2:3–6, or John again in 1 John 3:4 that sin is a violation of the law, or Paul in 1 Cor 9:21 where he talks about being “under/in the law toward Messiah,” or Paul again in Rom 3:31, ” Do we then make void the law through faith? God forbid: yea, we establish the law,” or Paul in 1 Cor 11:1 urging us to literally imitate Messiah who was a law keeper, or Messiah himself in Matt 5:17–19. I could go on and on with hundreds of other clear examples, but hopefully the point is made. We must guard against cherry picking one verse or passage from the Bible out of the context the rest of Scripture and make a doctrinal statement out of it as if that one passage nullifies the entire rest of the Bible. Not saying that’s what you’re doing, but I’ve heard others do this many times. This destroys the integrity of Scripture and turns it into a giant mixed up, confused mess and a bunch of lies.

      As to the moral requirements of the law go, who came up with that verbiage? The Bible nowhere uses such terms. This is divide and conquer church terminology whereby they divide the Torah into its moral and ceremonial requirements, then toss out the so-called “ceremonial” requirements. This is an unbiblical false dichotomy that is a false doctrine of man used to invalidate the parts of Torah that men hate (like the Sabbath, feasts and dietary laws). Nowhere in the Bible is this division made or even suggested. James is clear that the Torah-law stands or falls together (Jas 1:10). Yeshua went out of his way in the Sermon on the Mount to prove that both the letter and the spirit of the law were requirements for the righteous. Again, I could go on and on to validate this truth of Scripture.

      As far as circumcision goes, I’ve written on this many times on this blog. Type “circumcision” into the blog’s search engine and pull my articles up on this subject. Time doesn’t allow me to go over it for the umpteenth time again here.

      One more thing. Another lying false dichotomy the church makes is to separate believers into Jews and Gentiles. In several places, Paul clearly states that in the body of Yeshua there is no longer Jew or Gentile or even male or female (e.g. Gal 3:29). Elohim is neither a sexist or racist! How do you like that? That ought to go over well with the “politically correct,” “progressive” crowd! When one comes to Messiah, he/she is now a literal child of Abraham (Gal 3:29) and an Israelite (Ephraim 2:11–19) and is called “the Israel of Elohim” (Gal 6:16). To wit, there’s no Gentile gate in the New Jerusalem. Gentiles aren’t getting in there—only redeemed blood bought Israelites (most of whom were former Gentiles) whether they’re biological or grafted in, doesn’t matter.

      I hope this helps.

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