Do We Have to Follow All the Laws of the Bible?
My son balks at the Bible, especially when anyone quotes scripture. He does not believe that it is inspired by the Holy Spirit but rather thinks it’s a list of silly rules and stories that are not relevant today. He specifically likes to refer to Leviticus 19:19 that forbids mixing different fabrics, “Do not wear clothing woven of two kinds of material.”
He states that if we are to follow the laws of the Bible, this would mean we’d have to follow all the rules. And considering that some of the rules are preposterous to us than we need not follow any of them.
Although I can agree with his logic and understand his reasoning he is missing a simple fact; not all laws in the Bible are created equal.
In the Old Testament, there are actually three categories of laws: ceremonial, civil, and moral. Ceremonial law refers specifically to worship of God and although we are no longer bound by these laws because Jesus fulfilled the law, the principles of loving and worshipping God still apply today.
Civil law refers to daily living in Biblical times. Because our culture and modern times are so different, some of the rules no longer apply and cannot be followed. Again, the principles of the law are more important than the letter of the law.
Moral law refers to the commands of God. These laws still apply to us today and we should obey them.
So although certain types of laws do not apply to us today this does not make the Bible obsolete. Instead, it requires more study into the why behind the laws of the time and more focus on the principles behind the rules that simply do not apply to today, and obedience to the moral laws of God.
Ultimately, what really matters is Jesus’ answer when asked which is the most important commandment:
“The most important one,” answered Jesus, “is this: ‘Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one. Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength. ‘The second is this: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no commandment greater than these (Mark 6:29-31 NIV).
What law of the Bible do you find the most difficult to understand?