Christians have argued about the application of the OT since the earliest times (from whether Christian males should be circumcised onwards). But there seems to be much less discussion about the purpose of the law in the first place. Why is God so concerned about whether the Israelites planted two crops in one field (Lev 19.19) or whether an Israelite man trimmed his beard (Lev 19.27)? Some of these laws clearly indicate a moral stance – not using false weights (Lev 19.35) and not ill-treating foreigners (Lev 19.33) - but it’s hard to see how this might apply to having a garment with more than one type of material (Lev 19.19). I have heard it suggested that those laws concerned with food were of practical value – shellfish (Lev 11.10) and pork (Lev 11.7) can both easily cause illness. But if this is the reason for the dietary laws, why isn’t there one that says, “Make sure that chicken is thoroughly cooked before eating it”, and another insisting on washing hands before and after handling meat? Were the laws about two crops and two materials really about maintaining separateness of the people (Christian or Israelite)? If so were these laws given as "types” of later Christian requirements? Or did the Israelites just misunderstand what God required of them (“blessed are the cheesemakers”)? What are the Old Testament laws for? (Note: this thread most definitely isn’t about a particular bit of OT law which might or might not apply to Christians – that is a very dead horse indeed).