- Hebrew Roots/Messianic Movement
Frequently Asked Questions
About Hebrew Roots
Hebrew Roots FAQ's
Under the Law
worship an antinomian or lawless Jesus, but He was Torah
observant, and we are to follow His example of that.
The Jesus that Christianity follows is the Jesus
of the New Testament, the fulfillment of the promised New
Covenant, who is God manifest in the flesh. Although Jesus was
born ďunder the lawĒ, His purpose in coming was to fulfill the
Law and the Prophets. He taught of the Law written on our
hearts, which is not Torah, but a new commandment, as Jesus
A new commandment I give unto you, That ye love
one another; as I have loved you, that ye also love one
Matthew 22:36-40 Master, which is the great commandment
in the law? 37. Jesus said unto him, Thou shalt love the
Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and
with all thy mind. 38. This is the first and great
commandment. 39. And the second is like unto it, Thou shalt
love thy neighbour as thyself. 40.
On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets.
Both the OT and the NT show us that when Jesus
came, He would speak for His Father. He would not repeat what
Moses spoke, but a new law that was spoken of by the OT
Isaiah 42:1-4 Behold my servant, whom I uphold; mine
elect, in whom my soul delighteth; I have put my
spirit upon him:
he shall bring forth judgment to the
Gentiles. 2. He shall not cry, nor lift up, nor cause his
voice to be heard in the street. 3. A bruised reed shall he
not break, and the smoking flax shall he not quench: he
shall bring forth judgment unto truth. 4. He shall not fail
nor be discouraged, till he have set judgment in the earth:
the isles shall wait for his law.
Isaiah 42:6-7 I the LORD have called thee in
righteousness, and will hold thine hand, and will keep thee,
and give thee for a covenant of the people,
light of the Gentiles; 7. To open the blind eyes, to
bring out the prisoners from the prison, and them
that sit in darkness out of the prison house.
Isa 51:4 Hearken unto me, my people; and give ear unto
me, O my nation:
for a law shall proceed from me,
and I will make my judgment to rest for
a light of the people.
Mat 17:5 While he yet spake,
behold, a bright cloud overshadowed them: and behold a voice
out of the cloud, which said, This is my beloved Son, in
whom I am well pleased; hear ye
him. Psa. 2:7; Gen.
22:2; Isa. 42:1; Deut. 18:15
Heb 7:12 For the priesthood being changed, there is
made of necessity a change also of the law.
As we see, Jesus and Moses
do not have equal billing from the Father.
Acts 3:22-23 For Moses truly said unto the fathers, A
prophet shall the Lord your God raise up unto you of your
brethren, like unto me; him shall
ye hear in all things whatsoever he shall say unto you.
23. And it shall come to pass, that
soul, which will not hear that prophet, shall be destroyed
from among the people.
See Deut. 18:15-16, 19
Notice that it doesnít say Him
Deuteronomy 18:15-19 The LORD thy God will raise up unto
thee a Prophet from the midst of thee, of thy brethren, like
unto me; unto him ye shall hearken;
16. According to all that thou desiredst of the LORD thy God
in Horeb in the day of the assembly, saying, Let me not hear
again the voice of the LORD my God, neither let me see this
great fire any more, that I die not. 17. And the LORD said
unto me, They have well spoken that which they have spoken.
18. I will raise them up a Prophet from among their
brethren, like unto thee, and will
put my words in his mouth; and he shall speak unto them all
that I shall command him.
19. And it shall come to pass, that
whosoever will not hearken unto my
words which he shall speak in my name,
require it of him.
When Jesus said ďBut I say to
youĒ in Matthew 5:22-48, that is exactly what He meant
Hebrews 3:1-8 Wherefore, holy brethren, partakers of the
heavenly calling, consider the Apostle and High Priest of
our profession, Christ Jesus; 2. Who was faithful to him
that appointed him, as also Moses was faithful in all his
house. 3. For this man was
worthy of more glory than Moses, inasmuch as he who hath builded the house hath more honour than the house.
4. For every house is builded by some man; but
he that built all things is God.
5. And Moses verily was faithful in all his house,
servant, for a testimony of those things which were to be
spoken after; 6. But Christ as a
son over his own house; whose house are we, if we
hold fast the confidence and the rejoicing of the hope firm
unto the end.
7. Wherefore (as the Holy Ghost saith,
To day if ye will
hear his voice, 8. Harden not your hearts, as in the
provocation, in the day of temptation in the wilderness:
shows us how we are to keep His law Ė it is fulfilled in love,
after we believe Him.
1 John 3:23-24 And
his commandment, That we should believe on the name of his
Son Jesus Christ, and love one another, as he gave us
commandment. 24. And he that keepeth his commandments
dwelleth in him, and he in him. And hereby we know that he
abideth in us, by the Spirit which he hath given us.
Rom 13:8 Owe no man any thing, but to love one another: for
he that loveth another hath fulfilled the law.
Gal 5:14 For all the law is fulfilled in one word, even in
this; Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself.
Jesus said we are to
take up our cross
and follow Him. Jesus did not say, take up Torah and follow Him.
Mat 16:24 Then said Jesus
unto his disciples, If any man will come after me, let him
deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me.
Nor did He say, Go into the world
and preach Torah. He said:
Mark 16:15-16 And he said unto them, Go ye into all
the world, and preach the gospel to every creature. 16.
He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he
that believeth not shall be damned.
Romans 10:12-17 For there is no difference between the
Jew and the Greek: for the same Lord over all is rich unto
all that call upon him. 13. For whosoever shall call upon
the name of the Lord shall be saved. 14. How then shall they
call on him in whom they have not believed? and how shall
they believe in him of whom they have not heard? and how
shall they hear without a preacher? 15. And how shall they
preach, except they be sent? as it is written, How
beautiful are the feet of them that preach the gospel of
peace, and bring glad tidings of good things! 16. But they
have not all obeyed the gospel. For Esaias saith, Lord,
who hath believed our report? 17. So then faith cometh
by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.
Myth. Paul was Torah observant
A. Paul was a
Pharisee, and therefore was well versed in the letter of the
Law. Let us examine the actions of Paul after his acceptance of
Jesus, and see if he felt that he and other believers should be
"Torah observant" or under the law. Let's look
at Acts 15 first:
Act 15:1 And certain men which came down from Judaea
taught the brethren, and said,
Except ye be circumcised
after the manner of Moses, ye cannot be saved.
and Barnabas had no small dissension and disputation
with them, they determined that Paul and Barnabas,
and certain other of them, should go up to Jerusalem unto
the apostles and elders about this question.
Acts 15:5-13 But
there rose up certain of the sect of the Pharisees which
That it was needful to
circumcise them, and to command them to keep the law
6. And the apostles
and elders came together for to consider of this matter.
7. And when there had been much disputing, Peter rose
up, and said unto them, Men and brethren, ye know how
that a good while ago God made choice among us, that the
Gentiles by my mouth should hear the word of the gospel, and
believe. 8. And God, which knoweth the hearts, bare them
witness, giving them the Holy Ghost, even as he did
unto us; 9. And put no difference between us and them,
purifying their hearts by faith. 10. Now therefore
why tempt ye God, to put a yoke upon the neck of the
disciples, which neither our fathers nor we were able to
bear? 11. But
we believe that through the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ
we shall be saved, even as they.
12. Then all the multitude kept silence, and
gave audience to
Barnabas and Paul, declaring what miracles and wonders
God had wrought among the Gentiles by them.
13. And after they had held their peace, James
answered, saying, Men and brethren, hearken unto
Act 15:14 Simeon hath declared how God at the first did
visit the Gentiles, to take out of them a people for his
Then pleased it the apostles and elders, with the whole
church, to send chosen men of their own company to Antioch
with Paul and Barnabas;
namely, Judas surnamed
Barsabas, and Silas, chief men among the brethren: 23. And they
wrote letters by them after this manner; The
apostles and elders and brethren send greeting
unto the brethren which are of the Gentiles in Antioch and
Syria and Cilicia: 24. Forasmuch as we have heard, that
which went out from us have troubled you with words,
subverting your souls, saying, Ye must be
circumcised, and keep the law: to whom we gave no such
25. It seemed good unto us, being assembled with one
accord, to send chosen men unto you with our beloved
26. Men that have hazarded their lives for the name of our
Lord Jesus Christ. 27. We have sent therefore Judas and
Silas, who shall also tell you the same things by
mouth. 28. For it
seemed good to the Holy Ghost, and to us, to lay upon you no
greater burden than these necessary things; 29. That ye
abstain from meats offered to idols, and from blood, and
from things strangled, and from fornication: from which if
ye keep yourselves, ye shall do well.
Fare ye well.
Here we see Paul disputed with those
advocating that believers needed to be circumcised and keep the
law of Moses in order to live for Christ. The dispute was then carried
to Jerusalem to the other apostles and elders of the church. And
we see that they, in total agreement, declared they had given no
such commandment of having to keep the Law of Moses and they
sent letters and messengers along with Paul and Barnabas to
convey that to the Gentiles. That included the apostle Paul in
that meeting and as a 'messenger' of the epistle. In fact, they made it clear they
had given no such commandment and rather listed four things to
adhere to. The result of the epistle
delivered by Paul and the others:
Act 15:30 So when they were dismissed, they came to
Antioch: and when they had gathered the multitude together,
they delivered the epistle: 31 Which when they had
read, they rejoiced for the consolation.
Prior to this time, we see Paul going to the
Galatians when he first started preaching the Gospel, and how
Peter, who at that time had been preaching the Gospel to the
Gentiles, was living as a Gentile, until other Jews came.
Meaning---Peter wasn't keeping the law of Moses. Then he
separated from them and wanted the Gentiles to live as the Jews.
Paul rebuked them all for their hypocrisy and not understanding
what being justified by faith in Christ meant:
Galatians 2:9-16 And when James, Cephas, and John, who
seemed to be pillars, perceived the grace that was given
unto me, they gave to me and Barnabas the right hands of
fellowship; that we
unto the heathen, and they unto the circumcision. 10.
Only they would that we should remember the poor; the
same which I also was forward to do.
come to Antioch, I withstood him to the face, because
he was to be blamed.
12. For before that certain
came from James, he did eat with the Gentiles: but when
they were come, he withdrew and separated himself,
fearing them which were of the circumcision.
13. And the other Jews
dissembled likewise with him; insomuch that Barnabas also
was carried away with their dissimulation. 14.
But when I saw that they walked
not uprightly according to the truth of the gospel,
I said unto Peter before
If thou, being a
Jew, livest after the manner of Gentiles,
and not as do the Jews,
why compellest thou the Gentiles to live as
do the Jews?
15. We who are Jews
by nature, and not sinners of the Gentiles,
16. Knowing that a man
is not justified by the works of the law, but by the faith
of Jesus Christ, even we have believed in Jesus Christ, that
we might be justified by the faith of Christ, and not by the
works of the law: for by the works of the law shall no flesh
Galatians 2:17-21 But if, while we seek to be justified
by Christ, we ourselves also are found sinners, is
therefore Christ the minister of sin? God forbid. 18. For
if I build again the things which I destroyed, I make myself
19. For I through the law
am dead to the law, that I might live unto God. 20.
I am crucified with
Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in
me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the
faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for
me. 21. I do not frustrate the grace of God: for if
righteousness come by the law, then Christ is dead in
As we see, by
Acts 15, their was understanding of living for Christ and not
through the keeping of the law of Moses, which commandments were
nailed to the cross. It's about faith.
Paul wrote to the Ephesians
and Colossians that the law of commandments was abolished by
Christ, nailed to the cross.
Eph 2:15 Having abolished in his flesh the enmity,
even the law of commandments contained in
ordinances; for to make in himself of twain one new man,
so making peace; 16 And that he might reconcile both
unto God in one body by the cross, having slain the enmity
Col 2:14 Blotting out the handwriting of ordinances
that was against us, which was contrary to us, and
took it out of the way, nailing it to his cross;
The law that was
given to Israel had to be removed by Christ's sacrifice in order
to make all able to be reconciled to Christ.
Paul likens being under the Law
to spiritual adultery.
Wherefore, my brethren, ye also are become dead to the law
by the body of Christ; that ye should be married to another,
even to him who is raised from the dead, that we should
bring forth fruit unto God.
5 For when we were in the flesh, the motions of sins, which
were by the law, did work in our members to bring forth
fruit unto death.
6 But now we are delivered from the law, that being dead
wherein we were held; that we should serve in newness of
spirit, and not in the oldness of the letter.
We cannot thus be under the
Law and bring forth fruit for Christ. Paul says there that we
are dead to the law and married to Christ. He clearly says we
are serving according to the Spirit of the Law not the letter.
Attempting to live under the letter and authority of the Law is
in direct contradiction to the words of Paul where he says:
now we are delivered from the law,
dead wherein we were held;
should serve in newness of spirit, and not in the oldness of
If you look at the Scriptures, you will find that on many occasions Paul did not go to Jerusalem where the Temple was located, which was the center of Jewish religion from
Solomon's day until its destruction by the Romans in 70 C.E. This was the only place where sacrifices and certain other rituals of the
Jewish religion could be performed, and where the sacrifices were performed every year for
Passover, which is one of the appointed feasts, therefore
required. [Exodus 12:14, Leviticus 23:5-8, and Deuteronomy 16:1-8; Also see Deuteronomy 16:16]
There are passages recorded in Scripture that show that Paul did not go to Jerusalem on one occasion for a three year period [Gal
1:17-18, 21-22], and another being fourteen years. [Gal 2:1]
Paul spent about 18 months in Corinth on his second journey.
He spent over 2 years at Ephesus. There were also many other times he was known to be
journeying to or in, other cities, was imprisoned and so on.
Meaning, that the
Apostle Paul did not attend many
of the feasts at the Temple during those years. Meaning
that he was not being "Torah Observant."
In fact, if one reads carefully, we see that not only
did Paul not advocate the keeping of the feasts as a
requirement, he did not 'teach' those who were in
leadership with him, or admonish them, that they needed
to accompany him to Jerusalem in this passage: [Please
note, it does not say what type of vow Paul had.]
Acts 18:18-21 And Paul after this tarried there
yet a good while, and then took his leave of the brethren,
and sailed thence into Syria, and with him Priscilla and
Aquila; having shorn his head in Cenchrea: for he had
a vow. 19. And he came to Ephesus, and left them there: but
he himself entered into the synagogue, and reasoned with the
Jews. 20. When they desired him to tarry longer time
with them, he consented not; 21. But bade them farewell,
saying, I must by all means keep this feast that cometh in
Jerusalem: but I will return again unto you, if God will.
And he sailed from Ephesus.
If keeping the feasts was a requirement for believers, we
would have seen the example of Priscilla, and Aquila at the very
least, accompanying Paul to Jerusalem, or record of others going
with him at those few times he did go. We know this passage is
significant because we see Priscilla and Aquila taking Apollos,
a devout Jew, aside and teaching about the things of Christ.
Certainly if the feasts, keeping the law and all it entails were
part of that, it would have been mentioned.
he began to speak boldly in
the synagogue: whom when Aquila and Priscilla had heard,
they took him unto
and expounded unto him the way of God more perfectly.
And when he was disposed to pass into Achaia, the brethren
wrote, exhorting the disciples to receive him: who, when he
helped them much which had believed through grace: 28. For he
mightily convinced the Jews, and that publickly,
shewing by the scriptures that Jesus was Christ.
Acts 18:22-28 And when he had landed at
Caesarea, and gone up, and saluted the church, he went down
to Antioch. 23. And after he had spent
some time there,
he departed, and went over
the country of Galatia and Phrygia in order, strengthening
all the disciples. 24. And a
certain Jew named Apollos, born at Alexandria, an eloquent
mighty in the scriptures, came to Ephesus. 25.
This man was instructed in the way of the Lord; and being
fervent in the spirit, he spake and taught diligently the
things of the Lord, knowing only the baptism of John.
it, Paul said:
1 Corinthians 9:19-23 For though I be free from all
yet have I made myself servant unto all, that I might
gain the more. 20. And unto the Jews I became as a Jew,
that I might gain the Jews; to them that are under the
law, as under the law, that I might gain them that are under
the law; 21.
To them that are without
law, as without law, (being
not without law to God, but under the law to Christ,)
that I might gain them that are without law.
22. To the weak became I as
weak, that I might gain the weak: I am made all things to
all men, that I might by all means save some. 23. And
this I do for the gospel's sake, that I might be partaker
thereof with you.
2:19 For I through the law am dead to the law, that I might
live to God.
5:18 But if you be led of the Spirit, you are not under the
Gal 2:3 But
who was with me, being a Greek,
was compelled to be circumcised:
4 And that
because of false brethren unawares brought in, who came
in privily to spy out our liberty which we have in Christ
Jesus, that they might bring us into bondage:
Galatians 3:23-26 But before faith came, we were kept
under the law,
shut up unto the faith which should afterwards be
24. Wherefore the law was our schoolmaster to bring us
unto Christ, that we might be justified by faith. 25.
But after that faith
is come, we are no longer under a schoolmaster.
26. For ye are all the children of God by faith in Christ
Tell me, ye that desire to be under the law, do ye not hear
Nevertheless what saith the scripture? Cast out the
bondwoman and her son: for the son of the bondwoman shall
not be heir with the son of the freewoman. 4:31 So then,
brethren, we are not children of the bondwoman, but of
Gal 5:11 And I, brethren, if I yet preach
circumcision, why do I yet suffer persecution? then is
the offence of the cross ceased.
Paul was saying that if he preached
circumcision, which was part of keeping of the law of Moses,
there would have been no need to persecute him. And with that
would mean the cross brought no offence. But he was heavily
persecuted, and it was because of the Gospel and the things
concerning the fulfillment of the law and the prophets.
Paul instructed that Jesus, our Passover Lamb, was sacrificed for us. Jesus had to be blameless according to God's law to be a pure sacrifice. The Pharisees accused Him many times of breaking the Law,
while they continually transgressed it themselves. It was their errant interpretation which was based on their own opinions and tradition, not Scripture, as Jesus illustrated here:
Luke 13:14 And the ruler of the synagogue answered with indignation, because that Jesus had healed on the sabbath day, and said unto the people, There are six days in which men ought to work: in them therefore come and be healed, and not on the sabbath day.
15 The Lord then answered him, and said, Thou hypocrite, doth not each one of you on the sabbath loose his ox or his ass from the stall, and lead him away to watering?
16 And ought not this woman, being a daughter of Abraham, whom Satan hath bound, lo, these eighteen years, be loosed from this bond on the sabbath day?
17 And when he had said these things, all his adversaries were ashamed: and all the people rejoiced for all the glorious things that were done by him.
Matthew 15:2 Why do thy disciples transgress the tradition of the elders? for they wash not their hands when they eat bread.
3 But he answered and said unto them, Why do ye also transgress the commandment of God by your tradition?
4 For God commanded, saying, Honour thy father and mother: and, He that curseth father or mother, let him die the death.
5 But ye say, Whosoever shall say to his father or his mother, It is a gift, by whatsoever thou mightest be profited by me;
6 And honour not his father or his mother, he shall be free. Thus have ye made the commandment of God of none effect by your tradition.
7 Ye hypocrites, well did Esaias prophesy of you, saying,
8 This people draweth nigh unto me with their mouth, and honoureth me with their lips; but their heart is far from me.
9 But in vain they do worship me, teaching for doctrines the commandments of men.
Apostle Paul wrote:
1 Corinthians 5:7 Purge out therefore the old leaven, that ye may be a new lump, as ye are unleavened. For even Christ our passover is sacrificed for us:
8 Therefore let us keep the feast, not with old leaven, neither with the leaven of malice and wickedness; but with the unleavened bread of sincerity and truth.
Did Paul give
animal sacrifices? Myth: Paul sacrificed animals at the temple
even after he became an apostle.
Many suggest that
Paul did give animal sacrifices and did so because of being
'Torah Observant'. Did Paul or the
apostles sacrifice animals at the temple? Many cite an event
recorded in the Book of Acts as proof of this. Letís see what
the scriptures say:
Act 21:23 Do therefore this that we say to thee: We
have four men which
have a vow on them;
Act 21:24 Them take, and
purify thyself with them,
and be at charges with them, that they may
shave their heads: and all may know that those
things, whereof they were informed concerning thee, are
nothing; but that thou thyself also walkest orderly,
and keepest the law.
Act 21:25 As touching the Gentiles which believe, we
have written and concluded
that they observe no such
thing, save only
that they keep themselves from things offered to
idols, and from blood, and from strangled, and from
The above passage does not state
that Paul had taken a vow, and merely instructs him to purify
himself with them. The "be at charges with them" suggests he had
to pay for their rituals in order to join them. We should note
Act 21:26 Then Paul took the men, and the next day
purifying himself with them entered into the temple, to
signify the accomplishment of the days of purification,
until that an offering
should be offered for every one of them.
Act 21:27 And when the seven days were almost ended,
the Jews which were of Asia, when they saw him in the
temple, stirred up all the people, and laid hands on him,
Act 21:28 Crying
out, Men of Israel, help: This is the man, that teacheth all
men every where against the people, and the law, and
this place: and further brought Greeks also into the temple,
and hath polluted this holy place.
Act 21:29 (For
they had seen before with him in the city Trophimus an
Ephesian, whom they supposed that Paul had brought into the
Act 21:30 And all
the city was moved, and the people ran together: and they
took Paul, and drew him out of the temple: and forthwith the
doors were shut.
Act 21:31 And as
they went about to kill him, tidings came unto the chief
captain of the band, that all Jerusalem was in an uproar.
Act 21:32 Who
immediately took soldiers and centurions, and ran down unto
them: and when they saw the chief captain and the soldiers,
they left beating of Paul.
Act 21:33 Then
the chief captain came near, and took him, and commanded
him to be bound with two chains; and demanded who he
was, and what he had done.
From the above passage, we see
that Paul was taken on the seventh day while in the temple.
Therefore, the sacrifice was not done. Letís see what the
scriptures say about a vow, although there is no clear statement
that what was being referred to was a Nazarite vow, as described
Num 6:2 Speak unto the children of Israel,
and say unto them, When either man or woman shall separate
to vow a vow of a Nazarite, to separate
unto the LORD:
Num 6:7 He shall
not make himself unclean for his father, or for his mother,
for his brother, or for his sister, when they die: because
the consecration of his God is upon his head.
Num 6:8 All the
days of his separation he is holy unto the LORD.
Numbers 6:13-18 And this is the law of the
Nazarite, when the days of his separation are fulfilled: he
shall be brought unto the door of the tabernacle of the
And he shall offer his offering unto the LORD, one he lamb
of the first year without blemish for a burnt offering, and
one ewe lamb of the first year without blemish for a sin
offering, and one ram without blemish for peace offerings,
15. And a basket of unleavened bread, cakes of fine flour
mingled with oil, and wafers of unleavened bread anointed
with oil, and their meat offering, and their drink
offerings. 16. And
the priest shall bring them before the LORD, and
shall offer his sin offering, and his burnt offering:
17. And he shall offer the
ram for a sacrifice of peace offerings unto the LORD,
with the basket of unleavened bread: the priest shall offer
also his meat offering, and his drink offering. 18.
And the Nazarite shall
shave the head of his separation
at the door of the
tabernacle of the congregation, and shall take the hair of
the head of his separation, and put it in the fire
which is under the sacrifice of the peace offerings.
Note that the shaving of the head
took place at the completion of the vow, and after the sin and
other offerings were given. There is no mention of Paul giving
the required sacrifice or completing the ritual by shaving his
head, as was said the four others were going to be doing.
In the event of becoming defiled
during the Nazarite vow by a death.
Num 6:9 And if
any man die very suddenly by him, and he hath defiled the
head of his consecration; then he shall shave his head in
the day of his cleansing, on the seventh day shall he
Num 6:10 And
on the eighth day he shall bring two turtles, or two young
pigeons, to the priest, to the door of the tabernacle of the
And the priest shall offer
the one for a sin offering, and the other for a burnt
offering, and make an atonement for him, for that he sinned
by the dead, and shall hallow his head that same day.
Even if it was Paulís intent to
sacrifice according to a Nazarite vow (of which there is no definitive proof) God had a
different plan. Jesus Christ was the final sacrifice. To have
allowed Paul to continue, would have overturned that truth,
because the priest would have made an offering for sin for Paul.
There can be no other offerings for sin. There is
absolutely no Biblical proof that Paul or any of the apostles
sacrificed animals at the temple after Jesus died and rose again. The former things were pointed out, only because the
current teaching held by some, is that believers need to
sacrifice because Paul did. Some are sacrificing Pesach lambs
and such. There is no biblical account of Paul sacrificing, so
it is merely conjecture.
As far as people today thinking that there is a
need to sacrifice still, recall that all sacrifices
were done under the supervision of the High Priest. Since Jesus
is now the Great High Priest, one merely needs to re-read the
book of Hebrews to understand God's direction on this issue. It
is totally off limits scripturally.
Hebrews 7:11-17 If therefore perfection were by the
Levitical priesthood, (for under it the people received the
law,) what further need was there that another priest
should rise after the order of Melchisedec, and not be
called after the order of Aaron? 12. For the priesthood
being changed, there is made of necessity a change also of
the law. 13. For he of whom these things are spoken
pertaineth to another tribe, of which no man gave attendance
at the altar. 14. For it is evident that our Lord
sprang out of Juda; of which tribe Moses spake nothing
concerning priesthood. 15. And it is yet far more evident:
for that after the similitude of Melchisedec there ariseth
another priest, 16. Who is made, not after the law of a
carnal commandment, but after the power of an endless life.
17. For he testifieth, Thou art a priest for ever
after the order of Melchisedec.
Hebrews 7:20-24 And inasmuch as not without an oath he
was made priest: 21. (For those priests were made
without an oath; but this with an oath by him that said unto
him, The Lord sware and will not repent, Thou art a
priest for ever after the order of Melchisedec:) 22. By so
much was Jesus made a surety of a better testament. 23. And
they truly were many priests, because they were not suffered
to continue by reason of death: 24. But this man,
because he continueth ever, hath an unchangeable priesthood.
Hebrews 7:25-28 Wherefore he is able also to save them to
the uttermost that come unto God by him, seeing he ever
liveth to make intercession for them. 26. For such an high
priest became us, who is holy, harmless, undefiled,
separate from sinners, and made higher than the heavens; 27.
Who needeth not daily, as those high priests, to offer up
sacrifice, first for his own sins, and then for the
people's: for this he did once, when he offered up himself.
28. For the law maketh men high priests which have
infirmity; but the word of the oath, which was since the
law, maketh the Son, who is consecrated for evermore.
It should also be noted that the
extra Biblical rabbinic writings talk of how the temple
sacrifices were not accepted after the time of Christ's final
sacrifice (the string did not turn from crimson to white). That
is in keeping with the veil of the temple being rent from top to
bottom when Jesus gave up the ghost after being crucified. Jesus
paid the debt in full once and for all, and to say any different
is to mock His finished work on the cross. (it is finished)
Accept no substitute.
Mar 15:38 And the veil of the temple was
rent in twain from the top to the bottom.
Heb 10:10 By the which will we are sanctified through the
offering of the body of Jesus Christ once for all.
Paul was a Pharisee, and
therefore was well versed in the letter of the Law. Let us
examine the actions of Paul after his acceptance of Jesus, and
if he felt that non-Jews were obliged to follow it:
Did Paul Teach Tithing?
Paul taught about giving according to the heart, and not
according to the law, and that it was for the saints rather than
for the priests, something that today's church needs to gain
From the Hebrew Scriptures or TaNaKh [OT] on tithing:
Thus speak unto the Levites, and say unto them, When ye take
of the children of Israel the tithes which I have given you
from them for your inheritance, then ye shall offer up an
heave offering of it for the LORD, even a tenth part of the
Nehemiah 10:37 And that we should bring the firstfruits of
our dough, and our offerings, and the fruit of all manner of
trees, of wine and of oil, unto the priests, to the chambers
of the house of our God; and the tithes of our ground unto
the Levites, that the same Levites might have the tithes in
all the cities of our tillage.
Compared to what Paul taught.
16:1 Now concerning the collection for the saints, as I have
given order to the churches of Galatia, even so do ye. 2
Upon the first day of the week let every one of you lay by
him in store, as God hath prospered him, that there be no
gatherings when I come.
2 Corinthians 9:6 But this I say, He which soweth sparingly
shall reap also sparingly; and he which soweth bountifully
shall reap also bountifully. 7 Every man according as he
purposeth in his heart, so let him give; not grudgingly, or
of necessity: for God loveth a cheerful giver. 8 And God is
able to make all grace abound toward you; that ye, always
having all sufficiency in all things, may abound to every
For more on Tithing and Giving
please see the series :
Scriptural for New Covenant Believers? Under the Law or Led by
the Spirit : Introduction
Hebrew FAQS &
Myths > Myth.
to tithe to the Levites which today would be to 'Torah'
Myth: Some say that Paul advocated
circumcision by advising Timothy to have one done, and
therefore if one follows the Mosaic Law, it is part of
Part of the argument also, for the
extreme Messianics, is that unless one gets circumcised
one cannot observe Passover - which is Mosaic law as
well --------- but most ignore that too or accept their
medical circumcision as "real". However, in Judaism, a
medical circumcision is not accepted - it must be done
by a mohel under rabbinic stipulations.
12:3 And on the eighth day the flesh of his foreskin shall
Paul taught that believers need not be circumcised to be acceptable, but the Jews could according to the custom:
1 Corinthians 7 :18 Is any man called being circumcised? let him not become uncircumcised. Is any called in
uncircumcision? let him not be circumcised.
19 Circumcision is nothing, and uncircumcision is nothing, but the keeping of the commandments of God.
20 Let every man abide in the same calling wherein he was called.
Galatians 5:1 Stand fast therefore in the liberty wherewith Christ hath made us free, and be not entangled again with the yoke of bondage.
2 Behold, I Paul say unto you, that if ye be circumcised, Christ shall profit you nothing.
3 For I testify again to every man that is circumcised, that he is a debtor to do the whole law.
4 Christ is become of no effect unto you, whosoever of you are justified by the law; ye are fallen from grace.
Galatians 2:1 Then fourteen years after I went up again to Jerusalem with Barnabas, and took Titus with me also.
2 And I went up by revelation, and communicated unto them that gospel which I preach among the Gentiles, but privately to them which were of reputation, lest by any means I should run, or had run, in vain.
3 But neither Titus, who was with me, being a Greek, was compelled to be circumcised:
4 And that because of false brethren unawares brought in, who came in privily to spy out our liberty which we have in Christ Jesus, that they might bring us into bondage:
5 To whom we gave place by subjection, no, not for an hour; that the truth of the gospel might continue with you.
In Galatians 5:11 Paul was saying that if he
preached circumcision, which was part of the law and the keeping
of the law of Moses, there would have been no need to persecute
him. And with that would mean the cross brought no offence.
Gal 5:11 And
I, brethren, if I yet preach circumcision, why do I yet
suffer persecution? then is the offence of the cross
We see that Paul
did not circumcise Titus, and in fact Titus travelled to
Jerusalem with Paul and Barnabas.
2:1-9 Then fourteen years after I went up again to
Jerusalem with Barnabas, and took Titus with me also.
2. And I went up by revelation, and communicated unto them
that gospel which I preach among the Gentiles, but
privately to them which were of reputation, lest by any
means I should run, or had run, in vain. 3. But neither
Titus, who was with me, being a Greek, was compelled to be
circumcised: 4. And that because of false brethren
unawares brought in, who came in privily to spy out our
liberty which we have in Christ Jesus, that they might bring
us into bondage: 5. To whom we gave place by subjection, no,
not for an hour; that the truth of the gospel might continue
suggest there was no pressure from the other apostles to have
Titus circumcised. Paul did not circumcise Titus, since Titus
was Greek. In the case of Timothy, Timothy's mother was Jewish
despite his father having been Greek. So that made Timothy
Jewish and entitled to having been circumcised had his father
allowed it. It also made Paul able to take Timothy with him to
the Temple and Jerusalem in order to proclaim the Gospel to
This was not
deceit on Paul or Timothy's part, as some accuse, since Timothy
was of Jewish descent.
however, since he is not said to be of Jewish descent we can see
why Paul would not circumcise him. It is in keeping with the
rest of his teaching which says that Gentiles do not need to be
circumcised and obey the Mosaic Law.
Timothy, "because of the Jews which were in those quarters: for
they knew all that his father was a Greek." And his mother was a
Jewess. [Acts 16:1-3]
Not as under the Law but to make it easier to witness to
his fellow Jews.
Acts 16: Then came he to Derbe and Lystra: and, behold, a certain disciple was there, named Timotheus, the son of a certain woman, which was a Jewess, and believed; but his father was a Greek:
2 Which was well reported of by the brethren that were at Lystra and Iconium. 3 Him would Paul have to go forth with him; and took and circumcised him because of the Jews which were in those quarters: for they knew all that his father was a Greek.
[also Acts 11:2-3, 10:28 ]
It was always
about furtherance of the Gospel. That was Paul's focus.
Winning souls to Jesus Christ.
Corinthians 9:19 For though I be free from all men, yet have I made myself servant unto all, that I might gain the more.
20 And unto the Jews I became as a Jew, that I might gain the Jews; to them that are under the law, as under the law, that I might gain them that are under the law;
21 To them that are without law, as without law, (being not without law to God, but under the law to Christ,)
that I might gain them that are without law.
22 To the weak became I as weak, that I might gain the weak: I am made all things to all men, that I might by all means save some.
23 And this I do for the gospel's sake, that I might be partaker thereof with you.
That was his example.
14:13 Let us not therefore judge one another any more:
but judge this rather, that no man put a
stumblingblock or an occasion to fall in his brother's
14 I know, and am persuaded by the Lord Jesus, that
there is nothing unclean of itself: but to him that esteemeth any thing to be unclean, to him it is
15 But if thy brother be grieved with thy meat, now
walkest thou not charitably. Destroy not him with thy
meat, for whom Christ died. 16 Let not then your good
be evil spoken of:
17 For the kingdom of God is not meat and drink;
but righteousness, and peace, and joy in the Holy
18 For he that in these things serveth Christ is
acceptable to God, and approved of men. 19 Let
us therefore follow after the things which make for
peace, and things wherewith one may edify another.
20 For meat destroy not the work of God. All
things indeed are pure; but it is evil for that man
who eateth with offence.
21 It is good neither to eat flesh, nor to drink
wine, nor any thing whereby thy brother stumbleth, or
is offended, or is made weak.
22 Hast thou faith? have it to thyself before God.
Happy is he that condemneth not himself in that thing
which he alloweth.
words, even being Biblically 'kosher' was to be
undertaken for the purpose of not being a stumbling
block or offense to those who held to those things, such
as clean and unclean. It was always for the edification
of others in order to share Jesus Christ. See also:
Romans 14:2-5; 1Timothy 4:1-6, Romans 15:1, 1Corinthians
9:22, 1Corinthians 10:25, Colossians 2:16
Notice also in
the letters to Titus and Timothy, there is nothing about
circumcision, keeping the Sabbath or the law of Moses as being
the prerequisites for ordaining bishops or elders.
The Christian fulfillment of
circumcision is the spiritual removal of sin from the heart.
In whom also ye are circumcised with the circumcision made
without hands, in putting off the body of the sins of the
flesh by the circumcision of Christ:
Col 2:12 Buried with him in baptism, in which also ye are
risen with him through the faith of the operation of God,
who hath raised him from the dead.
Col 2:13 And you, being dead in your sins and the
uncircumcision of your flesh, hath he quickened together
with him, having forgiven you all trespasses
The point of physical
circumcision has always been about the circumcision of the
Deut 10:16 Circumcise therefore the foreskin of your heart,
and be no more stiff-necked.
Doesnít this tell us that the
uncircumcision of our flesh represents the heart full of sin and
isnít the physical uncircumcision in the Old Covenant
symbolizing being dead in sin and estranged from the covenant of
God? A shadow of things to
The change of heart that Paul describes in the image of
the heart circumcision is the work of the Holy Spirit, not the
result of external obedience to the Law.
In Isaiah 1:10-18 we see this very thing:
Isaiah 1:11-18 To what purpose is the multitude
of your sacrifices unto me? saith the LORD: I am full
of the burnt offerings of rams, and the fat of fed beasts;
and I delight not in the blood of bullocks, or of lambs, or
of he goats. 12. When ye come to appear before me, who
hath required this at your hand, to tread my courts?
13. Bring no more vain oblations; incense is an
abomination unto me; the new moons and sabbaths, the calling
of assemblies, I cannot away with; it is iniquity,
even the solemn meeting. 14. Your new moons and your
appointed feasts my soul hateth: they are a trouble unto me;
I am weary to bear them.
15. And when ye spread forth your hands, I will hide
mine eyes from you: yea, when ye make many prayers, I will
not hear: your hands are full of blood. 16. Wash you,
make you clean; put away the evil of your doings from before
mine eyes; cease to do evil;
17. Learn to do well; seek judgment, relieve the
oppressed, judge the fatherless, plead for the widow. 18.
Come now, and let us reason together, saith the LORD: though
your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow;
though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool.
We see that God condemns external
obedience if not the product of, or accompanied by a righteous
Romans 2:25-29 For circumcision verily profiteth, if thou
keep the law: but if thou be a breaker of the law, thy
circumcision is made uncircumcision. 26. Therefore if the
uncircumcision keep the righteousness of the law, shall not
his uncircumcision be counted for circumcision? 27. And
shall not uncircumcision which is by nature, if it fulfil
the law, judge thee, who by the letter and circumcision dost
transgress the law? 28. For he is not a Jew, which is one
outwardly; neither is that circumcision, which is
outward in the flesh: 29. But he is a Jew, which is
one inwardly; and circumcision is that of the
heart, in the spirit, and not in the letter; whose
not of men, but of God.
David knew this when he prayed
in Psalm 51:10
"Create in me a clean
heart ,O God; and renew a right spirit within me."
Psalms 51:16-17 For thou desirest not sacrifice; else
would I give it: thou delightest not in burnt
offering. 17. The sacrifices of God are a broken
spirit: a broken and a contrite heart, O God, thou wilt not
Adherence to the letter of the
Law without a clean heart was an abomination to God,
Psalms 40:6-8 Sacrifice and offering thou didst not
desire; mine ears hast thou opened: burnt offering and sin
offering hast thou not required. 7. Then said I, Lo, I come:
in the volume of the book it is written of me, 8. I
delight to do thy will, O my God: yea, thy law is
within my heart.
Thatís why Jesus had such issue
with the Pharisees, because they loved to boast in their keeping
of the letter of the law, but their hearts were far from clean.
They were rigorously adhering to the externals yet inside in
their hearts all was not well
Psalms 78:36-37 Nevertheless they did flatter him with
their mouth, and they lied unto him with their tongues. 37.
For their heart was not right with him, neither were they
stedfast in his covenant.
Matthew 23:23-28 Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees,
hypocrites! for ye pay tithe of mint and anise and cummin,
and have omitted the weightier matters of the law,
judgment, mercy, and faith: these ought ye to have done, and
not to leave the other undone. 24. Ye blind
guides, which strain at a gnat, and swallow a camel. 25. Woe
unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye make
clean the outside of the cup and of the platter, but within
they are full of extortion and excess. 26. Thou blind
Pharisee, cleanse first that which is within the cup
and platter, that the outside of them may be clean also. 27.
Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye are
like unto whited sepulchres, which indeed appear beautiful
outward, but are within full of dead men's bones, and
of all uncleanness. 28. Even so ye also outwardly appear
righteous unto men, but within ye are full of hypocrisy and
Jesus calls us to work on our
hearts. Nowhere do we see him commending external observance but
countless times he draws attention to the internal heart
God isnít interested in the
outward observance for its own sake but what it points to or
symbolizes, the reality that it represents. The shadow of what
was to come which was Jesus and the New Covenant.
Those proponents of Hebrew Roots
or Messianics or Christians that call for going back to Mosaic
law-keeping miss these vital points and donít realize that what
they are doing can be offensive to God according to the
Bring no more vain oblations; incense is an abomination
unto me; the new moons and sabbaths, the calling of
assemblies, I cannot away with; it is iniquity, even
the solemn meeting. 14. Your new moons and your appointed
feasts my soul hateth: they are a trouble unto me; I am
weary to bear them.
They make people feel guilty by
claiming that they are not obeying God by doing the Mosaic
commandments and they themselves donít learn the lessons of the
OT. In the new Covenant God has dispensed with the shadows,
which were the tutor.
1 Timothy 1:5-7 Now the end of the commandment is
charity out of a pure heart, and of a good
conscience, and of faith unfeigned: 6. From which
some having swerved have turned aside unto vain jangling; 7.
Desiring to be teachers of the law; understanding neither
what they say, nor whereof they affirm.
Galatians 3:22-29 But the scripture hath concluded all
under sin, that the promise by faith of Jesus Christ
might be given to them that believe. 23. But
before faith came,
we were kept under the
shut up unto the faith which should afterwards be
Wherefore the law
was our schoolmaster to bring us unto Christ, that we
might be justified by faith.
25. But after that
faith is come, we are no longer under a schoolmaster.
26. For ye are
all the children of God by faith in Christ Jesus. 27.
For as many of you as have been baptized into Christ have
put on Christ. 28. There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is
neither bond nor free, there is neither male nor female:
for ye are all one in Christ Jesus. 29. And if ye be
Christ's, then are ye Abraham's seed, and heirs according to
In the OT God used the physical
to teach us about the spiritual. And as teaching, the OT is
essential but we are not called to continue practicing the
rituals contained within these shadows, that were proclaimed
since the time of Moses.
Jer 31:31 Behold, the days come, saith the LORD, that
I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel, and
with the house of Judah:
Jer 31:32 Not according to the covenant that I
made with their fathers in the day that I took them
by the hand to bring them out of the land of Egypt; which my
covenant they brake, although I was an husband unto them,
saith the LORD:
Jer 31:33 But this shall be the covenant that I
will make with the house of Israel; After those days, saith
the LORD, I will put my law in their inward parts, and
write it in their hearts; and will be their God, and they
shall be my people.
Jer 31:34 And they shall teach no more every man his
neighbour, and every man his brother, saying, Know the LORD:
for they shall all know me, from the least of them unto
the greatest of them, saith the LORD: for I will forgive
their iniquity, and I will remember their sin no more.
That is why, as recorded in Acts,
Paul, a Jew, found it so abhorrent that some Jews were teaching
that Gentiles had to be circumcised and keep the law of Moses.
He used strong language condemning them and rightly so, since
the physical rite had no value whatsoever in the New Covenant.
It was what it pointed to that now takes prominence. We are
called to circumcise our hearts, not our bodies. We are called
to follow Christ, not Moses.
Hebrew Roots FAQS & Myths
Basic Doctrinal Issues
Under the Law
Sacrifices, Feasts, Celebrations
God & Jesus
Who Is Jesus
for Hebrew and Greek Word definitions from Strong's Exhaustive
Concordance by James Strong
"Thayers" > Thayer's
Greek-English Lexicon of the New Testament
>Brown-Driver-Brigg's Hebrew Definitions
All Scripture King James Version unless otherwise
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