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The Jews and the Law - Essay Example

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The work discusses the problem of the laws given by God to people and them following those laws. It reveals how the number of laws in the Bible was gradually reduced to one. The author tackles the problem of true faith and obeying the law. …
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The Jews and the Law
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Jews and the Law According to the Jews, the law was the given to Moses in 613 principles. David then summarized it in Psalm 15th into just 11 principles. Isaiah further reduced the number into 6, Micah then to 3, and then Isaiah summarized it into 2. Habakkuk, Paul’s father, compacted the original 613 principles into just 1 – “the just shall live by faith” (Johnson Jr., p. 3).
Gentiles and Jews have different sets of law. The Gentiles have their moral theory while the Jews have the Mosaic Law. Gentiles are those people who are neither Jews nor Christians. Jews are denoted usually to be the Israelites or Jacob’s descendants. Jews follow the Mosaic Law or what is believed to be the Ten Commandments, which was mentioned twice on the Pentateuch (first in Exodus 20 and second on Deuteronomy 5) (Gigot, vol. 6, 8).
At beginning of the passage, Gentiles have been described as to not having any laws. They may not be following any written laws but they are following what is in their hearts. If they believe that what they have done is correct then it is correct and they are not disobeying any laws or commands. As verse 15 stated that “the laws are written in their hearts, their conscience also bearing witness” (New International Version, Romans 2:15).
On the other hand, the Jews have their own law written and being preached that they need to follow and not break any of those commandments. However, there are people who still break the law given onto them. They are proud of their heritage but they do not follow the laws that are meant to be obeyed and respected. One of the reasons why the Gentiles do not believe in the laws of God and even God himself is because of those people who do believe in God but do not uphold His laws and continuously disobeys the orders. It was even said that they are the reasons why Gentiles disrespect God and even curse His name (New International Version, Romans 2:24).
The Moral Law is the 10 Commandments that were given by God to Moses at Mt. Sinai. A person who follows the laws given to them follows God. Moral Law and the Mosaic Law are believed to be one and the same. It has been said that the Jews follows this law while the Gentiles do not.
Circumcision is a sign of God’s covenant with men (New International Version, Genesis 17:11). However in the passage, it is said that the covenant has a value only if the law is observed. When one breaks the law, it is like not being circumcised at all. This means that when one disobeyed what is written, they do not have the covenant at all (New International Version, Romans 2:25).
Those men who are uncircumcised yet believe and follow the written laws will condemn circumcised men even if they have the sign of the covenant and the written law. Even if a person is born a Jew and is circumcised but not a Jew at heart is not a Jew. Those who are living the laws and obeying what have been said and written are considered as Jews. The sign of the covenant is not on the physical but more of what is within the person. The circumcision that has been stated is not just following what is written but also putting in one’s heart the words and teachings of God (New International Version, Romans 2:27-29). When a man is uncircumcised, it means that he does not have the covenant with God.
When a man has faith in God, he would not break what has been said to be the law. An uncircumcised man even if he follows the law and keeps the law’s requirements is still considered to a lawbreaker. If one truly loves God then he will have faith in Him and follow his rules for the hope that man will be brought to the Promised Land and given eternal life. Laws are made to be followed. It is not made to be strict towards people yet it was made to made mold them back to the figure they were modeled when they were made. Man was made in the figure of God. There have been events that made man a sinner and stepped away from God’s figure. The passages simply state that we need to follow the God not because we are required to but because it was always meant to stay that way. God made a covenant with man. Man should also keep his end of the covenant.
Works Cited:
Gigot, Francis. "Gentiles." The Catholic Encyclopedia. Vol. 6. New York: Robert Appleton Company, 1909. 19 Nov. 2011 .
Gigot, Francis. "History of the Jews." The Catholic Encyclopedia. Vol. 8. New York: Robert Appleton Company, 1910. 19 Nov. 2011 .
Johnson, S. Lewis Jr. The Gospel that Paul Preached. Dallas, Texas: Believers Bible Bulletin. 2004
The Holy Bible, New International Version. Biblica, Inc. 2011. Read More
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