Are the 10 commandments for non jewish unbelievers?

Discussion in 'Baptist Theology & Bible Study' started by evangelist6589, Oct 18, 2013.

  1. evangelist6589

    evangelist6589
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    A poster says that using the 10 commandments may not be appropriate in todays day and age and I have to ask why? Do not the verses in my signature say that THE LAW is what converts the soul and enlightens the eyes? Why are the 10 commandments not appropriate for people today? Why should we use "evidences" to persuade people rather than just preaching the word of God and calling them to repentance? Sure many have been ticked off because I have confronted their sin but thats Biblical. In his most excellent book Hells Best Kept Secret Ray argues for the use and return to the 10 commandments as way to do evangelism. He makes many strong cases from scripture and not from RESULTS. Scripture is the authority and not results or the response. I applaud the evangelist whom does not bring a single person to the Lord his entire life but remained faithful and preached the word of God by using the 10 commandments, over the multitude of false converts that have made professions of faith in many churches. Many of these fundamentalist evangelist for example I fear are bringing in many false converts and boasting about it! I cat say for certain but the "easy believism" gospel runs afoot in the Fundamentalist movement.

    A great book

    http://www.livingwaters.com/helps/HellsBestKeptSecret.pdf

    Jesus is the example and we need to follow him. Yes he spoke with Jews, but so what as the law is written on the heart of all mankind.

    Know I understand that sometimes we may not be wise to use the 10 commandments. I heard a good argument from a Reformed baptist Pastor once on this and I concur that sometimes we would be wise to WAIT before bringing in the law, and show the gospel in other ways. However these instances are seldom.
     
    #1 evangelist6589, Oct 18, 2013
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  2. clark thompson

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    We as believers should attempt to live up to God''s morals which are shown thru the laws but we may fall because we are sinners but there is grace to keep us with Jesus.
     
  3. JonC

    JonC
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    Evan, my argument is that those who are lost need to be confronted with the fact that they have violated God’s law as revealed in their consciences and as explained in the Bible. The lost are under condemnation and need to understand their brokenness (sinful and fallen nature – their condemnation). My issue is with viewing it as a necessity to bring these lost under the OT Law as a Schoolmaster because I don’t think that this is the intent of Paul’s words. The Law as a Schoolmaster was not only the Ten Commandments and it was dealing with those who were under the Law. So to say that we must use the OT Law to convict seems to be the opposite of Galatians 3:23.

    I stated that in the past I thought it was appropriate to use the Ten Commandments, and that it still is depending on the situation – but as we live in a post-Christian society I am not sure that this is always the best method (not that it is “not appropriate in today’s day and age”). Since placing the “world” under OT Law in order to convict them is not prescribed in Scripture to reach the lost, I think it reasonable and biblical to evangelize with the expectation that the Holy Spirit brings people under conviction – they are under conviction outside of the OT Law – and this “law” written in their own conscious is just as valid in terms of Gentile condemnation. People do not live up to their own expectations perfectly, much less live up to what they would view as divine perfection or ideal perfection (if they don't believe in God). I have yet to find a verse that states Judaism is the first step to Christianity.

    I will say, however, that I do appreciate the “Way of the Master,” and I don’t think that the Ten Commandments no longer apply. This type of evangelism is excellent as long as one can come to an agreement regarding the Ten Commandments. My view is that they are fulfilled in Christ and Christ in us. If we love God with all of our heart, soul and strength and we love our neighbor as ourselves then we cannot be condemned under the Law as this is fulfilling the Law. If we love God we will obey Him.

    “Easy believism” is not limited to the Fundamentalist movement – it is a serious problem. But it has nothing to do with placing the lost under the OT Law.

    If you don’t mind, please expand on this topic. When do you believe it is not wise to use the Ten Commandments to evangelize and why are these instances seldom?
     
  4. evangelist6589

    evangelist6589
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    Well first off it would not be wise to start off point black with someone without building some sort of casual conversation. For example a month ago I took a plane flight and sat next to someone whom I believed to be a unbeliever. We chatted the entire flight about things but in the end all I could do is give a gospel tract. I wanted to use the LAW but was afraid it would have shut out our chat. Using the LAW is perhaps best done on the streets and with strangers. Our family and friends it may be better to build a friendship first and then use the LAW when an opportunity arises. I am all for using the LAW in evangelism, but realize there are times when we must show friendship & compassion with people before they are OPEN to the LAW. Does this make sense?
     
  5. Iconoclast

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    the ten Commandments are for all men everywhere
     
  6. quantumfaith

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    :thumbsup::thumbsup::thumbsup:
     
  7. JonC

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    :thumbsup: I agree. But the discussion is whether one must bring the lost under the OT Law in order to share the gospel or if the law written upon the hearts of the non-believers can adequately show that all have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God.
     
    #7 JonC, Oct 19, 2013
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  8. quantumfaith

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    JonC, do you mean by "bring the lost under the law" that a lost person must accept that an objective moral standard exists for mankind? Is so, I completely agree.
     
  9. JonC

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    If that is the meaning, then I would agree. But Evan references Galatians 3:24 to indicate that we are to bring the lost under the Old Testament Law so that the Law can convict the lost of sin. But if that verse is taken in context of Galatians 3, then it appears Paul was stating something different.
     
  10. HankD

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    The Torah was given to Israel.

    But it doesn't take the proverbial rocket scientist to figure out - this is what God would want from a nation of His chosen people and I fall miserably short of His expectations.

    So, yes, it stands as a testimony to the Gentile world as to the character of God and His holiness. Though He had chosen them (they also agreed to the covenant) He was very harsh with Israel and their disobedience, murmuring and complaining.

    When I came under conviction of sin it was not so much the 10 commandments but the whole genre of the OT that revealed the nature of my unregenerate heart and that I was no different than disobedient Israel:

    Jeremiah 17:9 The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked: who can know it?​


    HankD​
     
  11. JonC

    JonC
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    I agree, the whole genre of the OT reveals the nature of God’s holiness as related to mankind. I think that we (the contemporary church as a whole) tend to ignore holiness as taught in the OT – but the Law stood as a self-revelation of God and should not be ignored.

    I also was not saved through the Ten Commandments, or the OT Law for that matter. It was through the Gospel of John and Romans. What reached me was that without being in Christ I was condemned. Even as a child I realized that I had done wrong (for me, that was evidenced through my conscience – I knew that I did not always live as I should live). From Romans I realized that the consequence of sin was death – but this was true well before the OT Law was given. This death then couldn’t have been a result of transgression (of the Law), but of a sinful state. The necessity of being “born again” was made apparent to me through the NT – although the foundational understanding of these passages relate to the OT.

    My disagreement with the necessity of bringing the lost under the OT Law is, for one, the OT Law is not only the Ten Commandments. But even if it were, this is fulfilled in the command to love God with all of your heart, soul and strength and your neighbor as yourself. Too often we focus on sins rather than the heart – we focus on the manifestation rather than the cause.

    If the only way you can speak of our sinful state is through the OT Law, then so be it – but I don’t think that one should criticize other’s who witness strictly from the standpoint of the gospel and rely on the conviction of the Holy Spirit to speak of our sinful state – this is actually what Paul did to prove Gentile guilt. I have yet to meet anyone who believed they had done no wrong or had a perfect nature – and if I do, I’d highly expect they are not being honest with themselves or me.
     
  12. HankD

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    Good points. Before the law I believe there was the struggle of the conscience which perhaps is the idea behind the following passage:

    Genesis 6:3 And the LORD said, My spirit shall not always strive with man, for that he also is flesh: yet his days shall be an hundred and twenty years.​

    Another interesting passage is Genesis 26
    4 And I will make thy seed to multiply as the stars of heaven, and will give unto thy seed all these countries; and in thy seed shall all the nations of the earth be blessed;
    5 Because that Abraham obeyed my voice, and kept my charge, my commandments, my statutes, and my laws.

    These words and particularly in the Hebrew - charge, commandments, statutes and laws - indicate that there was perhaps a codified document(s) given to the patriarchs before Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers and Deuteronomy.​

    HankD​
     
  13. JonC

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    Interesting passages (I had not thought of Genesis). I was thinking of Romans 2:14. Paul tells us that God is revealed apart from the Biblical revelation (through creation) and that Gentiles are guilty apart from the OT Law. I can't see how such a general revelation through nature or conviction through our conscious could be a saving revelation - but I do believe it is suitable for condemnation as through it we all fall short. This is why I don't believe it necessary to bring the lost under the OT Law as a starting point to explain the gospel (although depending on the person using the Ten Commandments may be the best way - it depends on their presuppositions).
     
  14. HankD

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    The conscience appears to be intuitve.

    I don't like being hit in the head with a hammer so it's for sure others don't either if I do it to them.

    We do have an early account of justified retribution when someone hurts us:

    Genesis 3
    23 And Lamech said unto his wives, Adah and Zillah, Hear my voice; ye wives of Lamech, hearken unto my speech: for I have slain a man to my wounding, and a young man to my hurt.
    24 If Cain shall be avenged sevenfold, truly Lamech seventy and sevenfold.

    HankD​
     

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