Do you accidently contradict Rom 14 with Gal 4??

Discussion in 'Other Christian Denominations' started by BobRyan, Dec 21, 2007.

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Does your POV on Gal 4 contradict Rom 14?

  1. Never thought to compare them before - don't know

    3 vote(s)
    50.0%
  2. Yes - Gal 4 observances include the Rom 14 Observances

    2 vote(s)
    33.3%
  3. No I do not believe both Gal 4 applies to days like Passover - Rom 14 does!

    2 vote(s)
    33.3%
  4. The solution for Gal 4 in the OP is correct

    2 vote(s)
    33.3%
  5. I ignore some details in both Rom 14 and Gal 4 to get them to work.

    0 vote(s)
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  6. I am still studying this - see what happens here

    2 vote(s)
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Multiple votes are allowed.
  1. BobRyan

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    Question for the group:

    Do you use Gal 4 to condemn observance of OT days (for example Passover - or pick any other day you like from the OT) AND ALSO use Romans 14 as defending observance to those same Bible approved days?


    Do you agree that Gal 4 is actually condemning observance of something?


    Do you agree that Romans 14 is defending it?


    Here is a topic where I would certainly expect all on this board to differ with my POV so it will be helpful for me to have the group point to where the "details" are not in favor with my POV.


    Let's select a very easy example like "observing Passover" and read Romans 14: 5-6

    Rom 14
    5 One person regards one day above another, another regards every day alike Each person must be fully convinced in his own mind.
    6 He who observes the day, observes it for the Lord, and he who eats, does so for the Lord, for he gives thanks to God; and he who eats not, for the Lord he does not eat, and gives thanks to God.


    Now let's contrast that with Gal 4:8-10


    Gal 4
    8 however at that time, when you did not know God, you were
    slaves to those which by nature are no Gods.
    9 but now that you have come to know God, or rather to be known by God, how is it that you turn back again to the weak and worthless elemental things, to which you desire to be enslaved all over again?[/i]
    10 you observe days and months and seasons and years.



    ------------
    SOLUTION:

    Do you agree with the following outline of Gal 4 and that it demonstrates the harmony between Gal 4 and Romans 14?

    Outline for Gal 4.

    Vs 1-7 “The general sin problem – applicable to ALL mankind”


    Vs 8-11 “the specific problem of gentile Christians in Galatia: returning to paganism”



    in Christ,

    Bob
     
    #1 BobRyan, Dec 21, 2007
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 21, 2007
  2. Sgt. Fury

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    It seems as though the Gentiles in Galatia were contending both with the temptation to return to pagan observances and the influences of Judaizers who were trying to steer them into observing Mosaic ordinances. Neither of these options would be consistent with NT Christianity, the pagan rituals often involving fornication and demon worship, and the Mosaic ordinances being done away with by Jesus' fulfillment of the Law (Matt 5:17-18). Once the Law was fulfilled, it could be taken out of the way.

    Rom 14 seems to take into account that some people get hung up in old habits. Paul deals first with dietary issues. Remember this was a big deal with the Jewish Christians who were having to get used to interacting with Gentiles. The menu for Gentiles often contained things the Law of Moses had put off-limits to the Jews. The bottom line is that God does not accept men based on their diet, and neither should we.

    He then goes on to discuss the observance of days. Whether Jewish or pagan feast days, or both, I don't know. I'd guess both could be in mind here. 14:5 says that each should be persuaded in his own mind about what days to observe as "holy" or not.

    I would reason that this "follow your conscience" direction Paul gives here would not apply if the issue at hand conflicted with God's revealed word on the subject. For example, if one had previously engaged in eating blood, that would have to stop, since it is forbidden under all three dispensations, Patriarchal (Gen 9:4), Mosaic (Lev 3:17), and Christian (Acts 15:29).

    Concerning the Sabbath (I believe that's what you alluded to), Paul preached to the Jews on the Sabbath in several instances, for that was when they were gathered together. Other references to the disciples coming together (Acts 20:7; 1 Cor 16:2) indicate that the first day of the week, or Sunday, is the day on which Christians ought to meet for worship.

    It seems to me that to insist on Sabbath observance, which was only commanded of Israel (Neh 9:13, 14, when God made known unto them His Sabbath) would keep one bound to the whole law, animal sacrifices and all, would it not?
     
  3. BobRyan

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    Jews ate meat - in fact they were required to do so as part of their ceremonial law. The Romans 14 issue is specifically about the issue of "eating Meat" vs "eating vegetables only". There is only one place where we see even more detail on this "Meat vs vegetables" discussion and that is in 1Cor 8.

    It is not about eating "Meat of type A vs Meat of type B".

    Agreed?


    Paul identifies this more clearly in Romans chapter 14


    14 I know and am convinced in the Lord Jesus that nothing is unclean in itself; but to him who thinks anything to be unclean, to him it is unclean.
    15 For if because of food your brother is hurt, you are no longer walking according to love.
    Do not destroy with your food him for whom Christ died.


    Still in that case the FIRST example is that of the strong in faith - one who eats the meat (as 1 Cor 8 says - knowing that idols are nothing).

    1Cor 10
    18 Look at the nation Israel; are not those who eat the
    sacrifices sharers in the altar?
    19 What do I mean then? That a
    thing sacrificed to idols is anything, or that an idol is anything?
    20 No, but I say that the things which the Gentiles sacrifice,
    they sacrifice to demons and not to God; and I do not want you to become sharers in demons.[/b]
    21 You cannot drink the cup of the Lord and the
    cup of demons; you cannot partake of the table of the Lord and the table of demons.



    1 Cor 8
    7 However not all men have this knowledge; but some, being
    accustomed to the idol until now, eat food as if it were sacrificed to an idol; and their conscience being weak is defiled.


    8 But food will not commend us to God; we
    are neither the worse if we do not eat, nor the better if we do eat.
    9 But take care that this liberty of yours does not somehow become a
    stumbling block to the weak.
    10 For if someone sees you, who have knowledge,
    dining in an idol's temple, will not his conscience, if he is weak, be strengthened to eat things sacrificed to idols?
    11 For through your knowledge
    he who is weak is ruined, the brother for whose sake Christ died.
    12 And so, by sinning against the brethren and
    wounding their conscience when it is weak, you sin[/b] against Christ.
    13 Therefore, if food causes my brother to stumble,
    I will never eat meat again,[/b] so that I will not cause my brother to stumble


    So clearly in the case of meat-vs-vegetarian the strong-in-faith example is the "Jew" who knows that idols are nothing at all - for the Gentile pagan has been raised to view eating meat offerred to idols as having meaning and that the idols themselves are false gods - but gods none-the-less.




    in Christ,

    Bob
     
    #3 BobRyan, Dec 21, 2007
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 21, 2007
  4. Sgt. Fury

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    True, the issue in Rom 14 seems to be more vegetarian vs. PETA (People Eating Tasty Animals). I stand corrected.
     
  5. Sgt. Fury

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    1 Cor 8 speaks along similar lines regarding conscience and the fact that some were offended by others eating things sacrificed to idols. Boils down to "don't ask where the meat came from and eat", and "don't eat if you know a brother will be offended by it". Either way, God does not accept men based on what they eat.
     
  6. BobRyan

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    If we equate obedience to scripture (in the case of Passover for an easy example) with " a return to paganism" where both of them are to be condemned in Gal 4 -- then we must also condemn it in Romans 14.

    you can not have Romans 14 defending what Gal 4 condemns. In fact Romans 14 goes farther than that in the observance of the days - it condemns anyone who would condemn the observerances one way or the other.

    in Christ,

    Bob
     
  7. BobRyan

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    The point is that the "meat offerred to idols" context is the only one we have for a "meat vs vegetables-only" debate in the NT.

    It is interesting that Paul says the weak position is to abstain from meat offerred to idols -- yet this is the very command given to gentiles in the Acts 15 Jerusalem council.

    in Christ,

    Bob
     
  8. BobRyan

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    In the case of Romans 14 it can not be that Paul is defending the observance of pagan days.

    In the case of Gal 4 it can not be that Paul is condemning obedience to scripture (even if he thought that obediece was optional) since he just defended it in Rom 14 and condemned all who would look down in the least upon those who were choosing to observe them.

    By contrast - we have severe criticism of those who dare to even practice the observance that is the target of Gal 4


    Gal 4
    8 however at that time, when you did not know God, you were
    slaves to those which by nature are no Gods.
    9 but now that you have come to know God, or rather to be known by God, how is it that you turn back again to the weak and worthless elemental things, to which you desire to be enslaved all over again?[/i]
    10 you observe days and months and seasons and years.


    in Christ,

    Bob
     
  9. Sgt. Fury

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    Right. In Gal 4:8-10, Paul is concerned that these Christians will return to their former pagan practices. That would be bad in cases where doing so would require them to leave the doctrine of Christ.

    For example, the Bible says nothing about observing birthdays or the 4th of July. Neither of these are religious observances, thus neither of these causes me to depart from the doctrine of Christ by serving pagan gods or whatever.

    However, if I wanted to take part in, I don't know, the worship at the temple of Diana in Ephesus, I would be giving honor to one who is no god, and engaging in some form of ritual fornication no doubt. That would be a problem.

    Paul is obviously not speaking of birthday celebrations and the like in Gal 4:8-10, but the pagan religious rites that the Galatians were tempted to go back to.

    He goes on in 17-31 to warn against those who would bring them under the Mosaic Law and its' bondage. The Judaizers wanted these people to be circumcised and keep the law in order to be justified before God. Paul says in Gal 5:4 that if they did so, Christ would become of no effect to them, and that they would have fallen from grace.

    Neither a return to paganism nor subjection to the Law of Moses would profit them (or us) spiritually, indeed, either course would be damning.
     
  10. BobRyan

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    That is true. Not because obedience to scripture is a "bad thing" (certainly it is not and Paul defends it in Rom 14) but obedience for the purpose of "earning salvation" is wrong and as Acts 15 points out -- the argument being made in the first century is that the gentiles could not be saved without first becoming Jews as in joining the Jewish nation.

    In Eph 2 it is divided as "the circumcision vs the uncircumcision" to show that this was to indicate complete national identity.

    Paul argued that gentiles did not need to become Jews.

    But in Acts 21 and 22 we see Paul engaged in ceremonial services as "proof" that he was not teaching that Jewish Christians should not continue to be Jews or that the Gospel was somehow opposed to scripture as given in the OT.
     
  11. Sgt. Fury

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    I've wondered about that. Paul knew that he was not bound by the Law anymore, yet in at least a couple of instances he took steps to be in Jerusalem for Passover. Here's the text you referred to:

    Act 21:20 And when they heard it, they glorified the Lord, and said unto him, Thou seest, brother, how many thousands of Jews there are which believe; and they are all zealous of the law:
    Act 21:21 And they are informed of thee, that thou teachest all the Jews which are among the Gentiles to forsake Moses, saying that they ought not to circumcise their children, neither to walk after the customs.
    Act 21:22 What is it therefore? the multitude must needs come together: for they will hear that thou art come.
    Act 21:23 Do therefore this that we say to thee: We have four men which have a vow on them;
    Act 21:24 Them take, and purify thyself with them, and be at charges with them, that they may shave their heads: and all may know that those things, whereof they were informed concerning thee, are nothing; but that thou thyself also walkest orderly, and keepest the law.
    Act 21:25 As touching the Gentiles which believe, we have written and concluded that they observe no such thing, save only that they keep themselves from things offered to idols, and from blood, and from strangled, and from fornication.
    Act 21:26 Then Paul took the men, and the next day purifying himself with them entered into the temple, to signify the accomplishment of the days of purification, until that an offering should be offered for every one of them.


    The root of the problem seems to have been a misunderstanding of what Paul had been teaching. I am not aware of any place where he taught Jewish converts to forsake Moses, stop circumcising their children, and stop observing the customs, as James reported was spoken of Paul.

    Paul understood that these things were not required for salvation/justification, and warned against them as a means of justification (Gal 5:4, etc), but I don't know where he ever told anyone to stop.

    Apparently, the Christians at Jerusalem (formerly Jews) believed that Jesus was the Messiah, but did not yet understand that the Old Testament had been replaced by the New (Heb 8:13). I think the fact that some were requiring the Gentiles to pretty much become Jews before they accepted them as Christians indicates that they still put way too much importance on the Old Law.

    Remember the letter written in Acts 15 was sent out to the Gentile churches. I guess Jerusalem hadn't got the news that they were no longer under the Law of Moses. Paul already knew that Judaism was not to be forced upon the Gentiles, and that he was no longer bound to keep it as a former Jew, but he did observe some of them by choice, which would keep him from being estranged from the Jews he was trying to reach with the gospel.

    The Jews at this time were very nationalistic, and Paul used to be one of them. It would not do for the brethren at Jerusalem to think of Paul as a renegade from their race. His compliance to James' advice IMO was an attempt to keep peace among the brethren. You know how worked up folks from the Middle East can get!

    Whether the advice from James or Paul's following it were completely right or not might be a mystery for the hereafter. Scripture records the best and worst, the highs and lows, the rights and wrongs of men, even inspired men.

    I don't think I'd use this example to set a precedence, given the unique circumstances, and since he never actually got the opportunity to offer the sacrifice.
     
  12. Sgt. Fury

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    Sorry I got so wordy. I'll try to avoid it in the future.
     
  13. BobRyan

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    A couple of things to note. The exercise was intended to PROVE that there was nothing to the false claims being made against Paul.

    1. What cliams -- according to the text what was the false accusation?
    2. What was to be "proof" that this was false? Why would it "prove it"?
    3. WHO was it according to vs 25 that authorized the instruction given to the gentile Christians in Acts 15?

    For now answering the questions is left as an exercise for the reader.

    But consider this when you evaluate Gal 4 -- Paul can not be condemning Jewish Christians in Gal 4 for doing the very thing HE is so diligently doing!

    Neither can he be condemning Christians in Gal 4 (Christians of any stripe) for doing what he has defended in Romans 14.

    True - and he can not be condemning Gentile Christians in Gal 4 for doing what he allows Jewish Christians to do. It would be wrong to argue that Gentiles would lose their salvation for doing the very thing that Jewish Christians were allowed to do -

    Very true. And it is also true (as Paul points out in Gal 3) that no law had ever been given during any dispensation in the fall of mankind where Law brought salvation.

    So that which is being condemned in Gal 4:8-11 as a "return" to the paganism of the past -can not possibly be these observances of scriptures EVEN if those observances were now "optional" since they were based on animal sacrifices that had ceased to have value.

    Think about that statement for a second. Every time "Scripture" is quoted in the NT it is NEVER the NT that is quoted - always the OT.

    There is no statement at all in the NT saying "And with this letter I now replace scripture".

    The term "scripture" in the NT always had primary reference to the OT text.

    This was especially true at the time of the Acts 15 council and the Acts 21 advice to Paul. They did not have the full NT yet and no comments are ever made in all of scripture that considered "scripture" to have been abolished while waiting on "more letters from Paul".


    Yes that is true. Clearly that was an error in their teaching -- but it would have been error in any age - not just the NT period.

    In Acts 15 - Paul is there so also are the other apostles and the entire Christian churh is looking to the Christians in Jerusalem to settle the matter. IT can hardly be argued that Jerusalem was the tail and Turkey or Asia the head -- rather those fledging church were appealing to headquarters -- the source of the missionary evangelist movement to decide the issue.

    Notice that from Acts 21 through to Acts 28 Paul continually argues the point that his teaching did not take away from scripture -- specifically the Word of God given through Moses in the least.

    in Christ,

    Bob
     
  14. BobRyan

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    Nothing to appologize for -- I myself do that same thing almost without end.:laugh:

    in Christ,

    Bob
     
  15. BobRyan

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    This Acts 21 event is related 2 or 3 more times in the book of Acts and Paul declares that he was successfull in carying out the purification and sacrifices.

    Act 21:26 Then Paul took the men, and the next day purifying himself with them entered into the temple, to signify the accomplishment of the days of purification, until that an offering should be offered for every one of them.
     
  16. BobRyan

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    Following the Acts 21 incident Paul says in his defence "I AM a Pharisee the son of a Pharisee".

    In Acts Christians are accused of being "A SECT of Judaism".

    In Acts we see Paul ASKED by Jews in the synagogues to offer a word of insight and teaching as he is well known to them and a respected Pharisee.

    Paul never says "I USED to be a Jew".

    In Romans 3:1-3 Paul asks "So what advantage has the Jew? A GREAT one in every respect -- for one thing the very WORD OF GOD belongs to them".

    Christianity was not being offerred by Paul as a "new religion".

    in Christ,

    Bob
     
  17. trustitl

    trustitl
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    Paul is not defending "obedience to scripture" in Romans 14. He is talking about what to do with the weak who are concerned with things like food and days. He says "every one of us shall give account of himself to God." (verse 12)

    Paul's desire is that people would go beyond these weaknesses, but the way to help them is not to judge them but to "receive" THEM (verse 1) . This is not giving value to what they are practicing, rather it is to love them and let God be God.

    Paul's "acts" in Acts 21-22 is not proof that Jews were supposed to continue in the law. This is flies in the face of what Paul teaches about doctrine. This argument says the Acts of the apostles are doctrine. We are not to do what Paul did. To say this would to defend circumcision since Paul had Timothy circumcised.

    The Gospel was not opposed to the OT rather the OT was a shadow of things to come. Some are still worshipping through the shadows: days, feasts, etc. That is what is weak. Worship, perhaps, but weak in faith. We are now to worship in spirit and in truth.
     
  18. BobRyan

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    As stated in the OP -- let's take a "simple case" and test it.



    This is incredibly simple since no one on this board can make the side-tracked argument that someone is arguing in favor of Passover. Hopefully as Christians we can actually work through "the simple cases".

    If we take the "Specific example" of Passover in Rom 14 it is clearly a case of obedience to scripture (scripture defines it and specifies obedience) and is to be "allowed" as Paul allows it in Rom 14 -- in fact it is even defended to the point of condemning any judgment against it.

    However we would probably all agree that the sacrifices upon which Passover services are to be observed ended just as Heb 10 states. So although optional in observance - still the Rom 14 statement above clearly apears to defend and even to condemn anyone who would make negative statements about it's observance or those who observe it.

    Is that not obvious?

    On the other hand -- the Gal 4 statement IF bent to the point of applying to that SAME "Passover observance" of scripture appears to not ONLY condemn any "present observance" post-cross BUT it also condemns the PRIOR observance as equal to worshiping in a pagan system "SERVICE to those authorities that are by nature NOT even gods at all".

    Thus Gal 4:8-11 COULD be unwittingly bent back on Rom 14 to condemn the very thing that Rom 14 is defending AND condemning the God who authored the ceremonial days of scripture in the first place!!

    in Christ,

    Bob
     
    #18 BobRyan, Dec 22, 2007
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 22, 2007
  19. BobRyan

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    You can not sustain your suggestion without actually answering the basic questions pertaining to the text. Feel free to address the question listed above.

    Your suggestion is in error.

    1. Paul specifically instructs the saints to "Follow my example" and to "observe those who do NOT follow my example".

    The hollow suggestion that "we should not follow Paul's example" is lacking in compelling content.

    2. The book of acts IS NOT simply a compilation of "Apostles eating breakfast" -- it contains both the WORDS and the ACTS of the Apostles. To ignore the words and teaching the Apostles give us in the book of Acts simply because the book ALSO contains actions is to take the RC objecting path against Acts 17:11 "Sola scriptura" proof where the saints are blessed by the author of the book of Acts for the ACTION of using the "sola scriptura" method.

    Timothy was a Jew -- Titus was not. In Gal 1 Titus in applauded for not yielding to the pressure to "be a Jew". In Acts 16 (right after the gentile role was clarified) Paul insists that Timothy be circumcised.

    Paul then argues in Acts 21 that there is "NO TRUTH AT ALL" to the accusations made (accusations that I believe you would also make regarding the TEACHING of Paul - do you not?)

    It is left as an exercise for the reader to discover the fact that NO NT author EVER says "Scripture is merely a shadow of things to come and is now abolished".

    It is left as an exercise for the reader to discover that there was NEVER a time when the saints were "NOT to worship in spirit and in truth" but rather the GIANTS of faith given in Heb 11 ARE Those who DID worship in "spirit and in truth".

    in Christ,

    Bob
     
    #19 BobRyan, Dec 22, 2007
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 22, 2007
  20. trustitl

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    I Cor 11:1 "Be ye followers of me, even as I also am of Christ."

    If you want to think that Paul meant circumcising guys named Timothy and shaving your head go ahead.

    If you want to keep the passover go ahead. If you want to pass on the Christmas ham go ahead.

    "regardeth it unto the Lord" (Romans 14) but don't go teaching people they need to.
     

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