Friday 30 May 2014

Temple Offerings: A response to sandz

This article in particular is a response to a comment by sandz and I hope to respond to it to the best of my ability.

"I think your christological interpretation of Ezekiel is wacky! You say the blood offerings will be performed "in commemoration of what the Messiah has done for them" (your sentences then descends into incoherence). Where do you get your idea from the context that the sacrifices are just to commemorate Jesus? And remember, the context talks about bulls and goats as well as rams to be offered in sacrifice. How does a bull or a goat commemorate the "lamb of God"? 

But even if they do, the major problem with your interpretation (or re-hash) is that nowhere does Ezekiel even hint that the sacrifices are just commemorative tokens! On the contrary, the blood sacrifices are guilt or sin offerings. Ezekiel 44: 27 (talking about the ministering priest): "On the day he enters the inner court of the sanctuary, he is to OFFER A SIN OFFERING FOR HIMSELF".." Clearly, Jesus has not covered the priest from sin!:"

The bull and the goat comment misses the whole point. The sacrifices are done in commemoration of what the Messiah has done with respect to the atonement that he provides. If there is a third temple and the NT is true at the same time, it is safe to say exegetically that the sacrifices are done for their reason.

I am well aware they are sin and guilt offerings, but that doesn't tackle my point. All that is being done is preaching to the choir. Bringing up what the offerings are doesn't tackle the reason WHY they are offered as commemorative tokens. Hence Christ's atonement stands. I have also made it clear that the third temple is done after Christ returns to the earth and it stands during the Millennial Reign of Christ.

"Also, Ezekiel 43:19:"You are to give a young bull as a sin offering to the priests"

Note also that only men "circumcised in the flesh" can enter (44:9). Paul says that circumcision has no value (Galatians), and he even describes it as a mutilation. Alos, note that Ezekiel 44: 22 says that the priests can only marry Israelite women. Yet the New Testament teaches there is no difference between Jew and Gentile. Especially after Jesus' return, there should be no need to keep racial purity."

Paul doesn't say that circumcision is mutilation in the context of Galatians. Let's read the context:
"5 It is for freedom that Christ has set us free. Stand firm, then, and do not let yourselves be burdened again by a yoke of slavery.

2 Mark my words! I, Paul, tell you that if you let yourselves be circumcised, Christ will be of no value to you at all. 3 Again I declare to every man who lets himself be circumcised that he is obligated to obey the whole law. 4 You who are trying to be justified by the law have been alienated from Christ; you have fallen away from grace. 5 For through the Spirit we eagerly await by faith the righteousness for which we hope. 6 For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision nor uncircumcision has any value. The only thing that counts is faith expressing itself through love.

7 You were running a good race. Who cut in on you to keep you from obeying the truth? 8 That kind of persuasion does not come from the one who calls you. 9 “A little yeast works through the whole batch of dough.” 10 I am confident in the Lord that you will take no other view. The one who is throwing you into confusion, whoever that may be, will have to pay the penalty. 11 Brothers and sisters, if I am still preaching circumcision, why am I still being persecuted? In that case the offense of the cross has been abolished. 12 As for those agitators, I wish they would go the whole way and emasculate themselves!"

He is condemning the Judaizers for circumcising the Gentiles and trying to put them under Mosaic Law. Paul is not against a Jew getting circumcised, he even circumcised Timothy for evangelistic accommodation and because of the fact Timothy himself was a Jew. The Jews are allowed to be circumcised, but they need to recognise that it doesn't contribute to their salvation. It is Gentiles who are not allowed to be circumcised as that would put them under the law.

The section in Galatians 3 where it talks about no difference between Jews and Gentiles in Christ, it is referring to their oneness as to salvation. They are saved by the cross and have eternal life through his resurrection by repentant faith. Jews and Gentiles who submit to Christ will receive the same salvation, forgiveness of sins and eternal fellowship with God in heaven.

Hope this tackles some important points.

Answering Judaism.

1 comment:

  1. What was Ezekiel's concern?
    Ezekiel the prophet, was a Cohen, a priest. That means atonement of his people would have been of utmost concern. And as a priest specifically as a priest in exile, if blood sacrifices on the altar were no longer possible as the sole means of forgiveness, it would have been intolerable to Ezekiel.

    Ezekiel mentions blood in various contexts, 46 times, second only to Leviticus (72). Sometimes with respect to idolatry, murder and the restored offering in the 3rd temple.

    Ezekiel NOT ONCE...mentions the lack of blood sacrifice as a problem for personal salvation. There is not one lament of a now doomed people, lost and comdemned without a blood sacrifice.

    Ezekiel IS concerned about the departure of G-d's Shekinah from the temple, the destruction of Jerusalem, idolatry, corruption, the lack of Torah observance, lack of Justice, Mercy and such....

    Ezekiel writes about a restored Temple, Priesthood, Sacrificial system and the Jewish people being redeemed for the sake of G-ds name and the return of the Divine Presence.

    But he NEVER talks about blood sacrifice as something missing or being restored for us. It is about Hashem. A departing and returning Shekinah of Hashem.

    He talks of a Jewish people wicked and corrupt...exiled

    He talks of a geluah, a redeemed Jewish people, who now are observant and obey G-ds laws, statutes and ordinances.

    Nothing...nothing about blood only sacrifices for forgiveness of sin being lost and then restored. Nor a messiah to come and be this once-for-all korban sacrifice.