1.4 The Summary Argument
The summary of the argument stated: “I don't think we ever see a time in the Bible when two contradictory laws are being taught at the same time.” This argument implies that Jesus could contradict His own teachings on the Old Law if He waited until after the Old Law was nailed to the cross. When it is stated that way, it sounds terrible doesn’t it? “Changing the law” (Hebrews 7:12) sounds all right. “Contradicting the law” sounds suspicious. Some believe that any change indicates a contradiction. We agree that changes were made, but whether these changes were contradictions or not is a different matter, since the NT reality today was shadowed by the OT law. But let us not quibble over this, and to avoid that let us reword the argument as follows: “I don't think we ever see a time in the Bible when two different laws are being taught at the same time.”
We showed above that there was a time when two different laws were being taught at the same time. The allowing of Jesus to reveal the doctrine that is applicable to us today is not as extreme as it might seem. It is only reasonable that there cannot be an instantaneous point in time at which one law is removed and a second becomes effective, and at the same time, the second law cannot be revealed until this time. How would anyone have any idea of what law they were under, or what the new law was? Since Jesus was only on this earth for three years, it is totally unreasonable that his time and his life would be dedicated only to clarifying a law that was to be done away in just a matter of a few months, depending on when He delivered the teachings. On the other hand, it is fully consistent with reason that Jesus would introduce considerable teachings that would apply to His new spiritual kingdom so that when the Old Law was taken out of the way something would exist to take its place. (We emphasize only above, for this is the position of those who wish to put MML&J in the Old Testament. For if he could deliver just one new command, he could deliver two; and if two, twenty, and if that, hundreds.)
The 40-day period after the cross provides a convenient refuge for much of the New Testament to be revealed. Acts 1:3 tends to support this: “To these [the apostles] He also presented Himself alive, after His suffering, by many convincing proofs, appearing to them over [a period of] forty days, and speaking of the things concerning the kingdom of God.” But this does not prove that everything that Jesus said in the gospels was OT doctrine and does not apply to us today. In fact, it introduces far more questions than it answers. Among them:
- What law was mankind (allowing that Jews and Gentiles might have been under different laws) under during the 50-day period between the resurrection and Pentecost?
- When Jesus revealed the new law (supposedly for the first time) only to his disciples in the 40-day period, were they under two laws at the same time, since we all understand that the law did not go forth until Pentecost? Some say that no law was in effect during this time, but this introduces its own set of problems.
- How did the Jews who were converted on the day of Pentecost understand what the meaning of what was going on, and the meaning of the commands that were given, since they were not instructed in this 40-day period? For example, how did they understand (immediately and with no documented questions) the meaning of being “baptized for the remission of your sins” – a doctrine that is clearly introduced before the cross but was clearly not part of the OT?
These questions illustrate the dilemma that those who teach that MML&J are OT books must resolve. In attempting to do so they create additional theories and strange doctrines.
Next, we look at some other major arguments being used to teach that none of Jesus’ teaching in MML&J applies to us in chapter 2. Afterward, in chapter 3, we will give you a listing of related topics available for further study. We catalog these arguments along with our answers for easy reference. You may request these by contacting the authors of the desired topics listed.