The Spirit of the Law

Should Christians
Reject God's Law?

by

Ron Moseley

Foreword by Roy Blizzard, Ph.D.

The Spirit of the Law: Table of Contents

Why You Should Read This Book...

Every New Testament Promise Is Taken From An Old Testament Law

* Get A Fresh Understanding Of The Promises Available To The Non-Jew

*Learn New Ways To Improve Your Relationship With Your Fellow Man From God's Laws

* Free Yourself From The Traditional Misconceptions About God's Law

What The Scholars Are Saying...

"Many Christians appear to choke when they hear the word "Law"; to them it essentially represents some type of dead, legalistic biblical strait jacket of another age. Unfortunately, the above is a distortion or caricature of the very biblical material deemed so precious and authoritative in the life and teachings of Jesus and in the earliest Church. Ron Moseley has provided Christians of all backgrounds a great service by addressing with clarity and true biblical insight the thorny problem of the Church and the Law. The Spirit of the Law deserves to be read and reread by every thinking Church-goer.

Marvin Wilson, Ph.D.

Ockenga Professor of Biblical Studies

Chairman of the Department of Biblical Studies at Gordon College, Wenham, Massachusetts

Dr. Wilson was a translator of the New International Version of the Bible


I want to recommend Ron Moseley's new book, The Spirit of the Law, which, I believe, is a straightforward and insightful approach to a difficult and sometimes perplexing subject. The book presents a fresh and liberating understanding of Jesus and Paul's remarks about the Law, and in a way that the general public can easily relate to. Its content is on the "cutting edge" of Biblical scholarship, and I expect it to open a new vista of comprehension for the Church world...

Ken Hanson, Ph.D.

University of Texas

President, Kedem, Inc., Orlando, Florida


Ron Moseley has written a lucid and scholarly book on Law and grace in the teachings of Jesus and Paul which is a must for all Christians. His approach demonstrates the centrality of Torah for Christians and Jews.

Brad Young, Ph.D.

Hebrew University of Jerusalem

While at the Hebrew University, Dr. Young served as a graduate assistant to Professor David Flusser, Chairman of the Department of Comparative Religion. Dr. Young is now teaching at the Graduate School of Theology at Oral Roberts University in the department of New Testament Studies.


Acknowledgments

We are indebted to many fine workers and supporters whose interest in our research have made this book possible. None more than Remo Jacuzzi who heard me teach on this subject and urged me to put it in book form, and then made it possible for us to do so.

Dr. Roy Blizzard, Dr. Brad Young, Dr. Marvin Wilson, and Dr. Kenny Hanson are among my mentors who are responsible for teaching me much of this material as well as giving helpful suggestions in clarifying the test.

I must thank my wife, Judy Moseley, for her proof reading and encouragement, and Ron Lewis for his artwork on the cover. We are grateful to all those who volunteered extra resource literature that was used in the writing.


Introduction

 

The biblical text says much about God's Law, but often at the very mention of the term Law it remains a closed book. There are many reasons for this, but basically it is because we have taken on some misconceptions about God's Law. It is the sincere desire of those involved in the development of this work to help the reader understand where and how many of these misunderstandings evolved and that the law of God is as it always has been holy, just, good, and spiritual [Romans 7:123-14].

The Spirit of the Law is not designed to be an all encompassing exposition on the law of God. I can assure the reader, however, that he will acquire a greater understanding and appreciation of God's law and its present day benefits.

 

Ron Mosley


Foreword

I consider it both an honor and a privilege to have been asked by Ron Moseley to write a forward for his book. The Spirit of the Law. Ron is the epitome of a true teacher and a good student. I have always considered one of the principal characteristics of a true teacher to be that he, or she, be a perpetual student. Of the many pastors and teachers of my acquaintance, Ron Moseley has few equals. He is both an excellent teacher and a diligent student.

Ron has been with me to Israel on several occasions, has studied with me in almost every intensive study program I have taught, and has continued to do both formal and independent study.

In writing The Spirit of the Law, Ron has recognized, and has attempted to address, a subject of great importance that is basically misunderstood in Christianity: namely, the place and purpose of the Law. For most Christians, law conjures up all kinds of negative images. Law is something harsh, bad, transient, and superseded by something better: namely, grace. Such thinking does a grave injustice to God's revelation of himself to mankind.

As Ron points out, the underlying idea of law, as it is used in the Bible, is that of teaching and instruction. Law is God instructing His people that they may know how to live in a moral and ethical way, pleasing unto Him, and at peace with our fellow man. Law is instruction that, if followed, will enrich one's life, if ignored will diminish it. law was for the purpose of instructing man as to how he was to live here in this world.

Ron is correct in pointing out that Jesus and Paul were both Jewish, and their perspective on law was deeply rooted in the Judaism of their day. Both saw law as all-encompassing. It encompassed the totality of what a person is in his relationship both to God and to his fellow man.

Much of our misunderstanding comes from a failure to understand that Jesus' audience was almost entirely Jewish, while Paul, on the other hand, addresses a non-Jewish, or Gentile, audience. Even so, Paul was Jewish, "...a Hebrew of the Hebrews," and viewed God with a Hebrew mind.

For both Jesus and Paul, law was not a legal system; law was all-encompassing, full of God's mercy and grace. For Jesus' Jewish audience, that grace would be appropriated in one way, for Paul's non-Jewish audience, another way. But, for both, ultimately man's access to the kingdom was dependent entirely upon God's grace.

Unfortunately, it has been difficult for both the Christian and the Jew to understand many of Paul's statements about law because of what others have said Paul was saying. many Jewish theologians have written negatively about Paul and his teachings, based not upon a careful examination of Paul, but based upon what Christian theologians said about Paul.

Such misunderstanding started as early as 144 C.E. with Marcion, the heretic. The western church was historically anti-Jewish and anti-law through much of its history. Martin Luther impacted Christian theology negatively with his anti-Jewish theology. Luther was a rabid anti-Semite and, unfortunately, the influence of Luther, Marcion, and others remain with us until today.

Ron has made a significant contribution for the Christian audience with his book. The Spirit of the Law. In The Spirit of the law, Ron Moseley assists us in understanding the nature and purpose of law for God's divine plan for man.

 

Roy B. Blizzard, Jr., Ph.D.

Adjunct Assistant Professor

University of Texas at Austin

President, Yavo, Inc.

The Spirit of the Law: Table of Content


Copyright 1993 Ron Moseley
(Reproduced with Permission)

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