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Thursday, May 24, 2018

Customary and Universal Application

In the book of Leviticus chapters 18:22 and 20:13 God through Moses condemns homosexuality. Also in Leviticus 19:19b the word tells Israel that they were not to wear two different types of material sewn together. The command regarding the clothing is an ambiguous one. The reasoning behind that one is some believe that pagan nations may have worn different clothing sewn together when performing some type of occultic ritual and thus Israel who were/are God's chosen people, and had to be separate in every way from all other nations were forbidden from this practice. We do not know for sure.

The reason I bring the matter up is that so many people who lack Biblical discernment have this notion that since homosexuality was condemned in the Mosaic law and is of course condemned in the new testament (Read Romans 1 and 1 Corinthians 6), then it is also sinful to wear two different types of clothing (i.e. Denim and cotton), and to eat shellfish or shrimp since they were also supposedly forbidden.

Does the Bible condemn the eating of shrimp or the wearing of multiple fabrics?

What must be differentiated in the law is what was customary verses what has universal application. We are talking about the ancient Hebrews in Leviticus. Their dietary laws have been abolished with the arrival of the new covenant. This is what the Lord told Peter in Acts 10, "What God has cleansed, no longer consider unholy"(Acts 10:15).  What does that mean? God has put Peter into a trance. Peter saw a sheet come out of heaven and in it was all types of animals that their the old law forbade him to eat. So when Peter heard a voice tell him "to kill and eat", Peter said, "No Lord, for I have never eaten anything unholy and unclean." 

What God was trying to tell Peter is that the Old Covenant you knew your whole life has been superseded by a new and better covenant based on better promises (Heb 8:6,13). Also, Peter and his companions were there to preach the gospel to Gentiles for the first time - The Roman Centurion Cornelius and those in his house (Acts 10). The Gentiles are the ones God had cleansed in Peter's vision. Something the Jews never would have imagined!

Also, In 1 Timothy 4:3-4 we read, "Men who forbid marriage and advocate abstaining from foods which God has created to be gratefully shared in by those who believe and know the truth. For everything created by God is good, and nothing is to be rejected if it is received with gratitude; for it is sanctified by means of the word of God and prayer."

Point being is that no food is forbidden to us now. Of course, that does that mean we have to eat everything in sight. Some things we are better not consuming. The prohibition of certain foods in the Hebrews diet and the wearing of certain types clothing along with trimming of the beards, tattoos, etc were binding upon the nation of Israel to separate them from the other nations surrounding them that were evil. However, homosexuality is a moral law that was not abolished in the New Testament. It is binding upon us now. All of the moral commandments of the Mosaic law are still in force today; do not take the Lord's name in vain, do not kill, do not steal, do not commit adultery, etc (Exodus 20).

So when someone wants to say that since Christians always want to condemn homosexuality and those same people want to argue that the Old Testament law condemns the wearing of different fabrics, or say you cannot eat shellfish or shrimp, kindly explain to them what laws are binding upon us now, and which ones are not binding.

God's moral law always applies to us. God's customary laws do not apply because those laws have been abolished with the ushering in of the New Covenant.

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