Anyone struggling with the Passover guest list?
In the past, I’ve been sorry even when extending the invitation to the mainstream Christian, even though I wholeheartedly believe as Jonathan Cahn put it, “Passover is at the heart of the Christian faith.” But I’ve watched people balk at the broken bread and cups, and then here’s this beautiful night tainted with “but-we-don’t-have-to.”
1) Did you ever wonder where the term ceremonial came from?
2) And what did Catholic theologian Thomas Aquinas mean when he called some laws ceremonial?
3) How did Aquinas decide which laws were ceremonial and which laws were civil or moral?
4) And finally, can we know how God describes his own law?
When I moved to Thornhill, Ontario, I remember seeing throngs of Orthodox Jewish families walking to synagogue as I was driving down Bathurst St. It was an ordinary day, overcast, unremarkable except that it was one of the strangest experiences of my life: as I looked at them, I saw scriptures in 3 dimensions! I saw Numbers 15:38 (tzitzit) swinging in the breeze. I saw the unmarred beards of Lev. 19:27. I was driving through a world where Exodus 20:8-11, the Sabbath, was not a tiny 2-dimensional square of text in an ancient book, but a 3-dimensional world. That 3-dimensional world became visible to me because those people were choosing to obey those 2-dimensional scriptures.
That’s the experience I think of when people talk to me about the law of God.
The law of God is not a curse (the curse of sin and death has been removed for us through Christ [Rom. 8:2]), not a burden (1 John 5:3), and not too hard to do (Deut. 30:11-16). Every God-breathed law implies a choice for someone somewhere at some time. In those moments when our lives intersect with one of God’s commands, we can choose to obey it or choose not to obey it. We can get the greatest possible spiritual potential from it, or we can disregard it. We can fulfill it or destroy it. We can bring the Word of God to life or close the book and make it of none effect.
We’re asked to do the word (Jam. 1:22). We hear it, believe it, and live it. May our understanding increase and may we see the opportunities God gives us follow Christ, to walk as Jesus walked in this world, to walk in all the ways the Lord our God commands us.