Friday, February 26, 2010

Reply to SBC Today, 2-23-2010

Reply to SBC Today, Feb 23, 1010

Guthrie: 2. I like the emphasis on the local church being the focal point of the SBC instead of Nashville. 3. I like the clear call for increase teaching of Biblical Stewardship. No doubt where this group is on the Biblical plan for giving (first 10% should be given to undesignated giving and then more).

Kelly: You two points above contradict themselves. You only like the idea of local church autonomy AS LONG AS they agree with your viewpoint of tithing. That is hypocrisy.

Reply to SBC Today New Covenant Theology Exposed

New Covenant Theology Exposed, Feb 18, 2010

Tim Rogers: Mt 28:16-20: Where and to whom was this command given? The events of Acts had not occurred. The New Testament Church had not been implemented. If one applies the thinking of the NC approach, then one would have to say that as Jesus was still under the Law when He spoke of tithing to the Pharisees thus we do not have NT tithing, we would have to say the Great Commission is only given to the Jews and we in the NT do not have to fulfill it. HOGWASH

Russell Kelly replies: DOUBLE HOGWASH back to you. The New Covenant began when Jesus shed the blood of the New Covenant at Calvary and said "It is finished."

Matt 26:28 For this is my blood of the new testament , which is shed for many for the remission of sins.

Mark 14:24 And he said unto them, This is my blood of the new testament , which is shed for many.

Luke 22:20 Likewise also the cup after supper, saying, This cup is the new testament in my blood, which is shed for you.

1 Cor 11:25 After the same manner also he took the cup, when he had supped, saying, This cup is the new testament in my blood: this do ye, as oft as ye drink it, in remembrance of me.

Tim Guthrie and Tim Rogers build a paper tiger and attack it with vengeance instead of dialoging with those who disagree with them and posting their comments.

Notice Tim and Tim -- the blood of the New Covenant was shed and the New Covenant began, not at Pentecost, but at Calvary. The New Covenant and the Church are not synonymous. Pentecost is when God officially began the Church. Is that so difficult to understand?

Matthew 28:16-20 occur long after the New Covenant began. It is post-Calvary and New Covenant context. Old Covenant Israelites were forbidden to use tithes to build mission stations and send out missionaries to the Gentiles.

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Doctor Johnny Hunt's Doctoral Degree is Honorary

According to the following article on the SBC web site "Doctor" Johnny Hunt has an earned B. A. in Religion from Gardner-Webb in 1979 and an earned M. Div. from SEBTS in 1981. How did he get a M.Div in two years?

He has HONORARY degrees from two schools like my own which are not fully accredited:

Immanuel Baptist Theological Seminary of Sharpsburg, Georgia

Doctor of Sacred Laws and Letters from Covington Theological Seminary

Doctor of Divinity at Tennessee Temple University

This makes his own DOCTORAL credentials even less real than my own earned degree! Yet the SBC makes fun of Covington while allowing one of its own presidents like Hunt to call himself "DOCTOR" with only honorary degrees. What a sham!

And more, Jerry Vines, Charles Stanley, Walter MarTin and Spiros Zodhiates all got their degrees from schools which were not accredited at the time.

How does the US government accredit a religious school? Is the theology from BYU (Mormon) and Notre Dame (Catholic) correct because they are accredited schools?

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Isaiah 53 for My Atheist Friend to Explain

To my very good friend who claims to have become an atheist:

I invite you to give me your reaction to Isaiah 53. According to conservatives it was written around 720 BC and, according to liberals, it was written before 400 BC. Regardless of which date is correct, it is still a prophecy which predates Christ by a bare minimum of 400 years.

Jews claim that Isaiah 53 refers to the nation itself as God's servant. I strongly disagree because the servant is to die as a substitute for the nation.

I have copied both the ultra conservative KJV and the ultra liberal RSV which is based on the "best" Dead Sea Scrolls. After comparing the two documents, you must admit that they differ very little and do not differ on any important point. Again the documents have been miraculously preserved over many centuries without significant change.

Whether you understand the substitute death of Christ or not is irrelevant. The fact that all of this prophecy was fulfilled by Christ proves that God inspired it.

1. Isa 52:13 prophesied that the Messiah would be exalted very high. Although this is not significant by itself, when compared to the following texts it is amazing.

Isa 52:13 Behold, my servant shall deal prudently, he shall be exalted and extolled, and be very high. KJV

13 Behold, my servant shall prosper,
he shall be exalted and lifted up,
and shall be very high. RSV

2. **52:14, written centuries before Christ, prophesied that Messiah would be punished so much that one could barely recognize him as a man. This is proof of divine foreknowledge and inspiration.

Isa 52:14 As many were astonished at thee; his visage was so marred more than any man, and his form more than the sons of men: KJV

14 As many were astonished at him -
his appearance was so marred, beyond human semblance, and his form beyond that of the sons of men - RSV

3. 52:15 Israel's Messiah would affect many other nations.

Isa 52:15 So shall he *sprinkle many nations; the kings shall shut their mouths at him: for that which had not been told them shall they see; and that which they had not heard shall they consider. (*NKJ, NAS, NIV)

15 so shall he startle many nations;
kings shall shut their mouths because of him;
for that which has not been told them they shall see,
and that which they have not heard they shall understand.

4. *53:1 Prophecies about the Messiah will not be believed, especially the part about His death, burial and resurrection. As you know, Israel rejected Christ as its Messiah. Atheists and agnostics testify to this fulfillment.

Isaiah 53:1 Who hath believed our report? and to whom is the arm of the LORD revealed?

53;1 Who has believed what we have heard?
And to whom has the arm of the LORD been revealed? RSV

5. *53:2 Unlike most kings, Israel's Messiah will come from an ordinary family and grow up in an ordinary lifestyle. Messiah would not stand out among his peers by being abnormally tall, short of handsome.

Isa 53:2 For he shall grow up before him as a tender plant, and as a root out of a dry ground: he hath no form nor comeliness; and when we shall see him, there is no beauty that we should desire him.

53:2 For he grew up before him like a young plant,
and like a root out of dry ground;
he had no form or comeliness that we should look at him, and no beauty that we should desire him. RSV

6. **53:3 prophesied over 400 years before Christ that the Messiah who would eventually be exalted very high (52:13) would first be despised and rejected by his own people. This must be by divine revelation.

Isa 53:3 He is despised and rejected of men; a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief: and we hid as it were our faces from him; he was despised, and we esteemed him not.

3 He was despised and rejected by men;
a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief;
and as one from whom men hide their faces
he was despised, and we esteemed him not.

7. *53:4-6 prophesied over 400 years before Christ that Messiah will suffer as a substitute for the sins of others. This is unusually contrary to previous Hebrew history and thought. Even more remarkable, Messiah's suffering is part of God's plan which is definitely not seen in previous Hebrew thought. This Christian understanding is radically different from every other modern religion.

Isa 53:4 Surely he hath borne our griefs, and carried our sorrows: yet we did esteem him stricken, smitten of God, and afflicted.

53:4 Surely he has borne our griefs and carried our sorrows; yet we esteemed him stricken, smitten by God, and afflicted. RSV

Isa 53:5 But he was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and with his stripes we are healed.

53:5 But he was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities; upon him was the chastisement that made us whole, and with his stripes we are healed. RSV

53:6 All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned every one to his own way; and the LORD hath laid on him the iniquity of us all.

6 All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned every one to his own way; and the LORD has laid on him the iniquity of us all. RSV

8. 53:7 prophesied over 400 years before Christ that Messiah would not attempt to defend himself when oppressed. Divine inspiration is evident.

Isa 53:7 He was oppressed, and he was afflicted, yet he opened not his mouth: he is brought as a lamb to the slaughter, and as a sheep before her shearers is dumb, so he openeth not his mouth.

53:7 He was oppressed, and he was afflicted, yet he opened not his mouth; like a lamb that is led to the slaughter, and like a sheep that before its shearers is dumb, so he opened not his mouth.

9. 53:8a is the only textual confusion between the KJV and the RSV. It could easily be reconciled if seen as a description of Christ's illegal arrest and illegal trial.

53:8A He was taken from prison and from judgment:

53:8a By *oppression and judgment he was taken away; … (* NAS, NIV)

10. ***53:8b Again, when compared to 52:13 it is amazing that a prophet would write over 400 years before Christ that Messiah would both be exalted very high and also be killed for the sins of his own people. Divine revelation is evident.

53:8b … and who shall declare his generation? for he was cut off out of the land of the living: for the transgression of my people was he stricken.

53:8b … and as for his generation, who considered that he was cut off out of the land of the living, stricken for the transgression of my people? (NAS, NIV)

11. ***53:9a The same Messiah who is raised as an ordinary person and rejected by his own people will be buried with the rich. Divine revelation.

Isa 53:9a And he made his grave with the wicked, and with the rich in his death;

9a And they made his grave with the wicked and with a rich man in his death, …

12. *53:9b This part of the prophecy tells us WHY Messiah was buried with the rich. Normally a common criminal would be buried in a common grave with other criminals. Yet Pontius Pilate knew that Jesus was innocent and allowed his body to be taken elsewhere.

Isa 53:9b … because he had done no violence, …

9b … although he had done no violence, …

13. **The prophet is inspired to write that the Messiah will be innocent. Divine inspiration.

Isa 53:9c … neither was any deceit in his mouth.

53:9c … and there was no deceit in his mouth.

14. ****53:10a is the most amazing part of the entire prophecy because Israel did not believe in human sacrifices. Yet the inspired prophet wrote exactly what God wanted him to write even though contrary to his history and thought.

Isa 53:10a Yet it pleased the LORD to bruise him; he hath put him to grief: when thou shalt make his soul an offering for sin, he shall see his seed,

53:10a Yet it was the will of the LORD to bruise him; he has put him to grief; when he makes himself an offering for sin, he shall see his offspring,

15. ***53:10b Again, at a minimum of 400 years before Christ the inspired prophet writes that Messiah will be killed, buried among the rich and be resurrected to prolong his days. Divine inspiration.

Isa 53:10b … he shall prolong his days, and the pleasure of the LORD shall prosper in his hand.

53:10b … he shall prolong his days; the will of the LORD shall prosper in his hand;

16. 53:11a Messiah will know that His sacrifice was effectual --that it had been accepted to redeem mankind.

Isa 53:11a He shall see of the travail of his soul, and shall be satisfied:…

53:11 he shall see the fruit of the travail of his soul and be satisfied; …

17. 53:11b Messiah will justify those who believe in him by faith --by knowledge of him. That was not known in Isaiah's time. Divine inspiration.

Isa 53:11b … by his knowledge shall my righteous servant justify many; for he shall bear their iniquities.

53:11b … by his knowledge shall the righteous one, my servant, make many to be accounted righteous; and he shall bear their iniquities. RSV

18. 53:12 is a summary of what Messiah will accomplish many centuries later.

Isa 53:12 Therefore will I divide him a portion with the great, and he shall divide the spoil with the strong; because he hath poured out his soul unto death: and he was numbered with the transgressors; and he bare the sin of many, and made intercession for the transgressors.

53:12 Therefore I will divide him a portion with the great, and he shall divide the spoil with the strong; because he poured out his soul to death, and was numbered with the transgressors; yet he bore the sin of many, and made intercession for the transgressors. RSV

Saturday, February 20, 2010

Reply to For teh Love of God Blog on the Law

Reply to the For the Love of God Blog
Did Jesus Oppose The Law of Moses?

By Russell Earl Kelly:
You miss the whole point of Jesus and the Law. He was a Jew living under the full jurisdiction of the Law per Gal 4:4-5. In order to live a sinless life it was essential for Jesus to keep all the law and to teach others to keep all the law before Calvary. It would have been sin for Jesus to do anything else.

It would have also been for Jesus to teach His Gentile disciples to keep the Law. He could not and did not tell Gentiles whom he healed to go show themselves to the priest and offer the sacrifice Moses commanded. After 1776 the Law of England (good and bad) became null and void in the US and was replaced by US Law.

Your use of Matthew 5:19 to explain 5:17 is wrong. Matthew 5:19 includes all 613 commands of the Law and 5:20-48 illustrates 5:19 by quoting from the commandments, statutes and judgments. Either we are still under all of the OT Law or none of it.

1. The law allowed multiple marriages. Do you?

2. The law discussed cleanliness as a ceremonial ritual. We are not required to be ceremonially clean. Even sexual intercourse made one unclean and unqualified to worship. Do you have sex before church?

4. The law required some to shave their heads while taking an oath. Do you?

5. The Sabbath was only for Old Covenant Israel per Ex 31:13-17. Do you worship at sunset Friday as the Law required? Do you let your slaves rest then as the Law required?
6. Have you ever read all of the Law? Exodus 21:15, 17 commands Hebrews to kill disobedient children. I certainly hope that you have not done that.

7. Mt 23:23 is in the context of "matters of the law." It is addressed to "you scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites." It is before Calvary. It is not addressed to the New Covenant church. Jesus could not have commanded His Gentile converts to tithe either to him or to the Temple system because such was contrary to the law. In Leviticus 27:30-34 tithes are always only food from inside God's holy land of Israel. Although money was common and required for sanctuary worship, tithes are never money or increase from man's hand and cannot come from outside Israel.

8-9. According to Exodus 19:5-6 and scores of other texts, the Law was given only to national Israel in order to elevate them above other nations. Israel was never commanded to send out missionaries to convert the Gentiles. Only those Gentiles who became circumcised Hebrews could share with them.

"Jesus does not contradict Moses.Jesus does not oppose the Torah in any way."

Jesus would have been sinning if he did before Calvary.

Hebrews 8:12 says that the Old Covenant law "vanished" --all of it-- commandments, statutes and judgments.

Romans 8:2 says that Christians live by "the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus" --the law of love written in the heart of the new creation in Christ.

That which God wants his church to obey has been repeated to is after Calvary in terms of grace and faith. Hebrews 1:1,2; John 16:8-9.

Friday, February 19, 2010

Law: Stealing a Base or a Ball

Pro-tithers often retreat to the last battlefield of Abraham and Jacob and content that tithes were more than food from inside Israel.

For the following reasons I think this hermeneutic is wrong.

1. It ignores the law of the land and refuses to accept anything from outside the Bible regardless of how well it can be verified from extra-biblical sources.

2. It ignores the fact that these pre-Law tithes were not holy tithes from inside God's unique holy land of Israel.

3. It ignores the fact that these pre-Law tithes had not been miraculously "increased" by God's hand rather than by man's hand.

4. Most important, the tithe taught in the Law are, without a doubt, defined by the Law and are not defined by pre-Law tithes. Leviticus 27:34 reminds the reader "These are the commandments, which the LORD commanded Moses for the children of Israel in Mount Sinai." Numbers 18:8 calls itself an "ordinance" of the Law. Nehemiah 10:29, the context of Malachi, says "They clave to their brethren, their nobles, and entered into a curse, and into an oath, to walk in God's law, which was given by Moses the servant of God, and to observe and do all the commandments of the LORD our Lord, and his judgments and his statutes." Malachi 4:4 reads "Remember ye the law of Moses my servant, which I commanded unto him in Horeb for all Israel, with the statutes and judgments." And Matthew 23:23 is in the context of "matters of the law." None of these texts apply to the Church.

5. A court of law would not permit a definition of "tithe" from outside the boundary of the Law being discussed, that is, the Old Covenant Law of Moses given at Sinai.
For example the word "steal" in baseball mans to "steal a base" while the word "steal" in basketball and football means to "steal the ball." It is the same difference trying to define "tithe" from pre-Law when the context is Law.

6. When Jesus used the word "tithe" he used it in the context of its definition from the law.

7. Therefore the argument that tithes can includes money and materials from outside God's holy land should be thrown out on the grounds that neither the Law nor Jesus defined it as such.


Thursday, February 18, 2010


Glenn Beck Please Come Home

1. If you believe that the US Government had anything to do with 911 (and I most certainly do not), you are called a "Truth-er" and are too strange to hold public office.

2. If you believe that President Obama is not a US citizen (and I am waiting on the evidence), you are called a "Birth-er" and are too strange to hold public office.

3. But if you are a Mormon, wear holy undergarments, believe that Jesus and Lucifer are brothers, believe that you will eventually become God over your own planet, you are not too strange to hold public office!

I love Glenn Beck as an educator. I listen to him every morning and watch him every afternoon. He tells us to do serious research and know exactly why we are who we are. "Question everything" he says.

Glenn, please sit down with me and question your own weird faith. Take your own advice. May God bless your study.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Reply to SBC Today 2-16-2010

Reply to SBC TODAY BLOG, Feb 16, 2010
By Russell Earl Kelly

Kelly: Yawwnnnnnnn. Again, as usual, no Bible texts which is simply incredible on a supposedly Bible blog

Guthrie: The practical side of "tithing" and giving will show the depth of need in American churches that once was not an issue but now is at critical mass.

Kelly: Dr David Croteau's research demonstrates the tithing has failed to accomplish its goals since its beginning around 1895 in the USA SBC. It does not work and the church needs another better approach.

Guthrie: The first reason given these days is that the church is NOT required in the New Testament to receive such.

Kelly: NOT T RUE. The overwhelming majority of those who believed in freewill grace giving are strong church supporters. I always point out that 2nd Cor 8:12-15 requires MORE than ten per cent from while some are giving sacrificially even though less than ten per cent.

Guthrie: The rationale behind such a statement comes from those within the New Covenant Theology spectrum that love to highlight the breakdown of the tithes instructed by God that Israel was to bring to the Temple.

Kelly: Since Guthrie often censors posts which use biblical arguments to disagree with him, the other viewpoint is not found in his blog. Therefore only his biased opinion with no textual validity is all that he wants one to read.

Guthrie: Since the Temple is not part of the New Testament, then, in their reasoning, the church should not be recipients of tithing.

Kelly: NOT TRUE. The Temple is part of the New Testament but it is now the body of the individual believer which is the Temple of the Holy Spirit per the last verses of 1 Cor 3 and 1 Cor 6.

Guthrie: Lost in the discussion of this type of teaching is the fact that the Bible clearly shows that the New Testament endorses churches as God's ordained entities for the work of the ministry.

Kelly: NOT TRUE. It is not lost except in Guthrie biased mind. He does not correctly state our viewpoint. There were no church buildings for over 200 years after Calvary and they were not legal for almost 300 years. In other words, the concept of a church "storehouse" is a false doctrine and not a "fact." Notice he produces no texts.

Guthrie: Key in this discussion is the threat of the idea that there is a Universal church instead of a Universal Body. If such existed as taught then one could argue that instead of setting aside monies for a person's home church, one could make the decision that something else is more deserving and thus give to that need instead of to one's church.

Kelly: If you read other blogs which Guthrie cannot censor, you will find that he is almost alone arguing this point. I certainly do not teach what he says.

Guthrie: It sounds wonderful to many; especially those who see abuses of wasted money by a few churches that lack accountability and missiological purpose. But there is a danger here that cannot be ignored.

Kelly: Boring. Talk, talk, talk --no Bible discussion.

Guthrie: When we move from an understanding that God established and ordained churches for His work we move from His plan.

Kelly: Churches are ekklesia, the gathered assemblies of believers in hiding places like caves and graveyards. Churches are not buildings to store tithes.

Guthrie: We weaken churches. We weaken Missions around the world. We move to a system of thought that says I can hear from God and do as He tells me and my church may not be in the equation.

Kelly: Since OT tithes were never used to send out missionaries or set up mission stations, there is no precedent. The primary way that believers "hear from God" is through His Word and Guthrie avoids that.

Guthrie: A great question to ask at this point which few address is actually a simple one: Would God ordain churches and NOT provide for their funding in scripture?

Kelly: Pure ignorance. Paul's writings have a lot to say about post-Calvary New Covenant giving principles. The question is pure nonsense and ignores reality.

Guthrie: Any attempt to leave out the first priority of one's church is extremely poor Biblical Theology. Leaving out the local church is like saying to your heart, I don't like the maintenance required so I am going to take you out. The body could not live long at all right? God gave us the New Testament church. We have corrupted her greatly in America but God still has not given us an alternative. In fact He did not give us a choice. Ephesians is clear that God provides every gift for the church for the purpose of her caring out the mission - the Great Commission! It is the church that is to hold us accountable as individuals. It is the church that is to provide for the teaching and discipleship of the people that are reached with the Gospel. The gifts given were given to local churches to honor God in doing the work of God. Each one of us according to Ephesians are part of the body that God uses to equip and "staff" the church. Would God go to all this trouble and yet not provide funding? NO!

Kelly: Our point is completely ignored. Christ uses his church to achieve his purposes. However, however, however, he does so by using better New Covenant giving principles which do not include tithing! Guthrie is arguing with himself most of the time in this blog. Yawnnnnnnn.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Holy Tithes are Only Food from inside Israel

"tithe" = "tenth"
"tithe" = "tenth of food from inside Israel"
"tithe" = "increase from God from inside Israel"
"tithe" = "holy because increased by God from His holy land"

1. Lev. 27:30 tithe of the land; seed, trees; holy
2. Lev 27:32 tithe of the heard and flock; holy
3. Num 18:27 grain, wine
4. Num 18:28 heave offering; tithe
5. Deut 12:17 grain, wine, oil
6. Deut 14:22 tithe all the increase of your seed
7. Deut 14:23 grain, wine, oil
8. Deut 26:12 all the tithes of your increase
9. 2 Chron 31:5 increase of the fields
10. 2 Chron 31:6 ttihe of oxen and sheep; holy thing
11. Neh 10:37 tithes of our ground (Israel ground)
12. Neh 13:5 grain, wine, oil
13. Mal 3:10 **that there may be FOOD
14. Mal 3:11 fruit of your ground and field
15. Matt 23:23 **mint and cumin
16. Luke 11:42 **mint, rue, herbs

COURT FINES: Ex 21:34,35; 22:7, 17
USUARY LAWS: Ex 22:25; Lev 25:37
VOWS IN TEMPLE: Lev 27:3-7


Monday, February 15, 2010

Les Puryear Censorship Blog

Les Puryear has just changed his blog to allow only authorized team members.

He has posted a number of those who agree with him.

In order to be fair he should also publish my long list of about 50 who disagree with him.

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Numbers 18, the ignored tithing statute

Numbers 18 is the tithing statute-ordinance of the Old Covenant. Here is what it teaches:

Num 18:21-28

1. 18:21 Levitical food tithes should be given to the servants of the priests who are guards, builders and caretakers. (Num 3) (Lev 27:30-34)

21 And, behold, I have given the children of Levi all the tenth in Israel for an inheritance, for their service which they serve, even the service of the tabernacle of the congregation.

2. 18:22 Ordinary worshippers shall not enter the Tabernacle grounds under punishment of death.

22 Neither must the children of Israel henceforth come nigh the tabernacle of the congregation, lest they bear sin, and die.

3. 18:23 Levitical servants to the ministers shall not inherit land or property.

23 But the Levites shall do the service of the tabernacle of the congregation, and they shall bear their iniquity: it shall be a statute for ever throughout your generations, that among the children of Israel they have no inheritance.

4. 18:24 As a salary for assisting the ministers as builders, guards, animal skinners and maintenance work, the Levites shall receive the first whole tithe in exchange for loss of inheritance rights.

24 But the tithes of the children of Israel, which they offer as an heave offering unto the LORD, I have given to the Levites to inherit: therefore I have said unto them, Among the children of Israel they shall have no inheritance.

5. 18:24 This is the commanded statute of the Law from God directly to Moses concerning Israel.

25 And the LORD spake unto Moses, saying,

6. 18:26 The minister-priests only receive one tenth of the tithe, or one per cent of the total, from the Levites.

26 Thus speak unto the Levites, and say unto them, When ye take of the children of Israel the tithes which I have given you from them for your inheritance, then ye shall offer up an heave offering of it for the LORD, even a tenth part of the tithe.

7. 18:27 The tenth of the tithe received by the priests from the Levites shall be considered a food tithe.

27 And this your heave offering shall be reckoned unto you, as though it were the corn of the threshingfloor, and as the fulness of the winepress.

8. 18:28 As heave offerings the tithes were always only food and never money. The minister-priests who receive the tithes from the Levites are not commanded to tithe.

28 Thus ye [Levites] also shall offer an heave offering unto the LORD of all your tithes, which ye receive of the children of Israel; and ye shall give thereof the LORD's heave offering to Aaron the priest.

1. Tithes were only food from Israel.
2. Tithes went to the workers and not to the ministers.
3. Ministers only received one per cent.
4. Ordinary worshippers could not enter the Tabernacle grounds and would be killed if they tried.
5. Tithe recipients could not own or inherit property.

Please discuss God's Word and explain why the New Covenant Church does not obey ANY of the above tithing commandments.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Reply to Les Puryear: Deleted from His Site

To Lesse (This post has been deleted from Puryear's Site)

16. On Feb 9th Bill asked you "Can someone provide a link to an aggregation of moral laws in the OT?" and you replied "I know of no such list. If you can't distinguish between ceremonial law, dietary law, and moral law, then you have a major problem interpreting scripture properly. All I know to tell you is to take a hermeneutics course."

When Jesus was asked which were the greatest commandments of the law, he quoted Leviticus and Deuteronomy, not the Ten Commandments. The moral law is interwoven throughout the ceremonial statutes and the judicial decrees. It was SIN to break any of them. One who completely ignores Matthew 5:19 has a major problem with Jesus' word to Hebrews before Calvary.

17. When asked "Which category of Law does the Sabbath law fall under?" you replied "In my opinion, Moral law."

You have actually changed the literal words of the Ten Commandments to fit your own theory. The literal Word commands Hebrews to rest on the seventh day of the week, which is Saturday and it approves of slave ownership. How can you call that moral for the Church?

18. You then said "Moral Law is defined as that which God says is right."

Which seminary textbook of hermeneutics did you get this definition from? According to Romans 1:19-20 and 2:14-16 all mankind has an inner light of conscience and nature which reveals what is right. Anything beyond that must be classified as special revelation. That is why the seventh-day Sabbath and 10% tithe must fall under special revelation. Man does not innately know which day of the week to worship and what percentage to give.

19. When asked "What justification do we find in scripture to separate and categorize types of Law?" you replied "By what is taught in the NT."

Hebrews 8:12 says that the Old Covenant (which means the entire Mosaic Law) "vanished." When the Declaration of Independence was signed in 1776 ALL English Law (both good and bad) ended as far as the US was concerned. The US then took that which was good and re-stated it in terms of our Constitution. Similar comparison can be seen between the Old and New Covenant.

20. You then said "The cross replaces the OT sacrificial system (read Hebrews)."

Again, Hebrews 8:12 says that the entire Old Covenant Law vanished. This is also seen clearly in 2nd Cor 3:1-10 where it has "no glory." Since the Law was an indivisible whole, if part of it ended, then all of it ended as a covenant. No Jew would sub-divide the law in order to discard part of it.

The sacrificial system only dealt with minor sins of ignorance, false testimony and minor theft. The judicial system punished violations of the first half of the Ten Commandments with death. You cannot abolish the sacrificial system without also abolishing the judgments and the rest of the Law.
……………………..posted thru 20…………………………..
21. When asked for a consistent working hermeneutic to use in bringing material from the Old into the New Covenant, you replied "The love of Christ and His Word. Also, the integrity to honestly seek to "rightly divide the truth."

That is an ambiguous answer which leaves it up to every believer to decide for himself what he wants to keep or reject. It only leads to confusion.

22. When asked "Specifically, what OT laws are being broken by Christians that lay them open to a charge of antinomianism?" you replied "Specifically, tithing, that is, the giving of a minimum of 10% to the church."

It sounds to me that you are defining "Law" as "Ten Commandments--minus Sabbath--plus tithing." Out of over 600 commands of the Law, you want to say 'antinomian' chiefly when it comes to tithing.

23. You call tithing a "minimum" as if everybody in the OT was required to begin his level of giving at 10%. That is wrong. Since holy tithes were always only food from inside Israel and, since traders and craftsmen in Israelite cities did not qualify as tithe-payers, then your use of "minimum" if false.

24. You added " However, these discussions over the past week have raised a much bigger issue than tithing." Agreed, but the real issue is the subject of your post " The Place of the OT Law in the Life of the Christian."

You added "To me, that issue is that people are saying that the Bible is no longer valid in the life of a Christian. The Bible is the OT & NT, not just the NT. Thus, the heart of this issue is the role of the Bible in the life of the believer."

No, the heart of this issue is the role of the Old Covenant Law in the heart of the believer and how do we as Christians "rightly divide" God's Word.

25. When asked "Why would tithing laws fall under moral law and not under ceremonial? Were not the tithes for the purpose of feeding the priests and upkeep of the temple? Both of which are now defunct?" you replied "The role of the priest have been replaced by the clergy. The role of the temple has been replaced by the church (the people and their place of worship).

This is Roman Catholic theology. It cannot be found in any Protestant seminary textbook. It ignores the NT doctrine of the priesthood of believers and the NT doctrine of the indwelling Holy Spirit in the temple of the believers. NT gospel workers more closely follow the OT pattern of the prophets who were either self-supporting or subsisted on freewill offerings. The early church did not even have its own buildings (no storehouses) for over 200 years after Calvary.

26. You added "Tithing is not defunct and nothing in the NT indicates that it is defunct."

See my points 1-15 in earlier posts. There is no church which obeys ANY of the tithing statute found in Numbers 18. It forbids Levitical tithe recipients from owning property and it commands ministers to KILL anybody else who dared enter the sanctuary to worship God directly. Why is this part of tithing ignored?

27. When Dave Woodbury presented a long list of difficult-to-explain scenarios from the law, you replied "I appreciate all of your comments, however, I think I will leave discussing the New Covenant Theology viewpoint to another post which is more specifically about their views."

Have you forgotten the name of your blog and your own opening comment? -- 'The Place of the OT Law in the Life of the Christian' throws open the door and invites discussions of New Covenant Theology and Dispensational Theology of the Law. Then you said "I believe we need to continue this discussion because it appears that there is great misunderstanding about the place of OT Law in the life of a Christian."

28. Tim Guthrie said "Yet, the law is there to point us to Christ AND to show us God's standard."

I reply that "the Law WAS there to point us to Christ and to show us God's standard" but that all changed when shadow met reality. Jesus is the clear standard to replace the shadow.

Rom 3:21 But now the righteousness of God without the law is manifested, being witnessed by the law and the prophets.

Gal 3:19 Wherefore then serveth the law? It was added because of transgressions, till the seed should come to whom the promise was made; and it was ordained by angels in the hand of a mediator.

Gal 3:25 But after that faith is come, we are no longer under a schoolmaster.

John 16:8 And when he is come, he will reprove the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment: 9 Of sin, because they believe not on me.

Russell Earl Kelly

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Reply to Les Puryear on the Law

The Place of the OT Law in the Life of a Christian

1. We know what is sin by law.

Ans: The word "is" in Rom 3:20 is not in the Greek. Since 3:21 begins with "But now," 3:20 could be interpreted "by the law WAS the knowledge of sin." The "law" from Romans 3:1-18 is Psalms and Isaiah. Hebrews 1:1-2.

2. What place has the OT in the life of the Christian?

Reply: What place has English Law for Americans? The Old Covenant Law was given only to national Israel as Ex 19:5-6; Lev 27:34; Neh 10:29 and Mal 4:4. It was never commanded to the Gentiles or the Church as a covenant and was confirmed in Acts 15 and Acts 21. First Corinthians 10 makes it clear that we are to learn from their mistakes but it does not command us to obey its covenant.

3. Should we remove the OT from our bibles?

Reply: It has many valuable moral teachings, examples and prophecies which are beyond the letter of the Mosaic Law.

4. Should we ignore the teachings of the OT?

Reply: We should not kill disobedient children (Ex 21:15,17), Saturday Sabbath breakers and adulterers. We should see comparable teachings after Calvary.

5. Are you saying that now that we are saved, it doesn't matter that we know what is sin?

Reply: The entire Law was a shadow of God's righteous requirements for national Israel. According to John 16:8-9 the Holy Spirit now judges sin as defined by the righteousness seen in Jesus Christ.

6. Has Christ removed the Ten Commandments as guideline for how to live?

Reply: They never were commanded to the Gentiles as "Thou Shalt Nots." God did not command the Gentiles in the OT to keep His law. He commanded Israel NOT to share its covenant with others. Because Christians are "new creations" indwelt by the Holy Spirit, the "Thou Shalt Nots" for Israel are now "you will" results of obedience for yielded believers. In Romans 8:2 the Christian law is "the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus."

7. Is the moral law in the OT no longer valid for a Christian?

Ans: Define "moral law." The moral law underlies much of the OT law but is not identical with it. It reflects the eternal character of God. Even the TC have non-moral cultic elements such as the Sabbath and "living long in the land (eretz). According to Romans 2:14-16 the moral law is known in nature and conscience which is not true of much of the literal law which requires special revelation.8. Personally, I think that the OT sacrificial system was replaced by the cross.

Ans: The OT Law was an indivisible whole. It is either all or none per Matthew 5:19 as illustrated in 5:20-48 which quotes all three portions. There are over 40 texts which equates the "law" to "commandments, statutes and judgments."

9. I also believe that OT dietary laws were abolished as communicated in Peter's vision in Acts 10.

Ans: Again, according to Mt 5:19 it is either all of the law or none of it as a covenant. That part of the OT law which applies to the Church after Calvary has been repeated in terms of grace and faith in terms of what believers WILL do instead of what they SHALT NOT do.

11. However, I see nothing in the NT that negates the moral law of the OT in the life of a NT Christian.

Ans: Define "law." Define "moral law." If you are going to use these terms, then you need to define them and use them consistently as you have defined them.

12. The OT moral law tells us what is pleasing to God and what is meant by living a holy life, which all Christians are called to do.

Ans: This means one thing to you and it means an entirely different thing to me. The moral law is know-able without special revelation and is seen in nature and conscience. The moral law says to rest; the OT Law says rest on Saturday. The moral law says to give; the OT Law said give 10%.13. I keep the commands of Christ, not because I have to but because of my love for Him, I want to.

Ans: You selectively obey the commands of Christ. Christ commanded obedience to the entire law in Mt 5:19. He commanded Temple worship because He lived under the full jurisdiction of the Law.

14. Nowhere in the NT is the OT moral law abrogated.

Ans: Romans 2:14-16; 1:19-20

15. I believe we need to continue this discussion because it appears that there is great misunderstanding about the place of OT Law in the life of a Christian.

Ans: Amen.

Monday, February 08, 2010

Discussion between Guthrie and Kelly, 2-14-10

To Russ

Once again your lack of knowing the discussion and using your own theory surpasses anything comprehendible.

NC = New Covenant - not a state. At least study to know the subject man. Please!!!!!!!!


Pardon me, brother, for not knowing your abbreviations since you have made remarks about the NC movement in past blogs. I did not think you opposed the New Covenant.

Old Covenant:
(1) Given only to national Israel as in Ex 19:5-6; Lev 27:34; Neh 10:29; Mal 4:4
(2) Consists of the Whole Law including commandments, statutes and judgments. Most ignore this and refuse to define "law."
(3) Was never commanded to the Gentiles or to the Church. In fact, Acts 15 and 21 oppose such.
(4) Therefore, the Old Covenant never applied to Christians as a covenant. Only the eternal moral law underlying it applied as in Romans 2:14-16.
(5) Ended at Calvary per Hebrews 8:12 and 7:18.

Now please tell me where and why you disagree? Time for dialog and no name-calling.


Reply to Tim Guthrie, SBC Today Blog

Reply to Tim Guthrie, SBC Today Blog

When a Standard is Lost, 2-14-2010

Guthrie: When we look at the issue of tithing it is important to remember this word [standard]

Kelly: A "standard" is supposed to apply to everybody alike. Since tithes were always only food from inside Israel, then tithes were only a standard for food producers who lived inside Israel. Those who worked in Israelite cities as traders and craftsmen did not qualify as tithe payers and the tithe was not a standard for their giving. And those who lived outside of Israel could not tithe off defiled pagan dust. Therefore there was no standard which applied to all people.

Guthrie: In the discussions that have made their way into the blog world of late we are learning that people who set out to prove a position to justify their behavior will often forget about this word STANDARD.

Kelly: It is wrong to accuse somebody who has a different biblical interpretation of "trying to prove a position to justify their behavior."Guthrie: When a person looks in the Word of God a clear standard is seen concerning the tithe. Though some are trying to ignore this standard, it is there.

Kelly: This cannot be proven. Just this week Dr. David Croteau of SBC Liberty University made his new book available, You Mean We Don't Have to Tithe? It is endorsed by three leading SBC theologians and Craig Blomberg.

Guthrie: Those who claim to hold to the New Covenant Theological position completely ignore that the Old Testament and the Law have been given to us for this very reason.

Kelly: Are the five leading theologians above all "ignoring" the clear teaching of the Word of God? Could you be the one ignoring our arguments?

Guthrie: We are free from the Law. Christ did what we could not. Yet NC people forget that the Law was God's STANDARD! Christ's payment for our sins does not change this standard.

Kelly: NC people? Croteau is in Virginia; Blomberg is in Colorado; MacArthur is in California; Unger was in Texas; Elwell was in Illinois, etc, etc, etc.

Guthrie: The Law was God's STANDARD! Christ's payment for our sins does not change this standard.

Kelly: Incredible. You imply that the word "Law" means "Ten Commandments, minus Sabbath, plus tithing." If I am wrong, then please please please define the way you use the "law." The Law in Exodus 21:15,17 still commands killing disobedient children and the Laws in Numbers 18:21-28 still commands recipients of Levitical tithes to forfeit property ownership. How do you justify ignoring most of the Law in order to teach tithing?

Don't delete his post. Engage in an in-depth discussion of the issue.

Sunday, February 07, 2010

Reply to Glenn Brooke on Tithing

Reply to Glenn Brooke, Be Bold and Gentle, 2-7-2010

Glenn: The simple answer is that you will not find a clear command to tithe in the New Testament.

Russ: Therefore the Holy Spirit did not find it necessary to teach tithing to the Church after Calvary in terms of grace and faith. Period.

Glenn: You also won't find an explicit command to not tithe or not give generously.

Russ: You will find explicit evidence that everything about the tithe ended at Calvary. (1) Its Old Covenant, (2) its Temple, (3) its priesthood, (4) its Levites and Levitical cities, (5) its restriction to food from inside Israel and (6) its prohibition that Levitical tithe recipients are not allowed to own or inherit property.

Glenn: The New Testament tells us that the reality of our "new creation in Christ" life is a much higher standard of giving than legalistic tithing.

Russ: This argument is based on the false assumptions that (1) everyone in the OT was required to begin their level of giving at ten per cent and (2) that OT and NT tithes could include income from outside of Israel. The truth is that OT Israelites who lived and worked trades in the cities did not qualify as tithe-payers and nobody outside of Israel qualified. Money was essential for sanctuary worship but only was never a tithe-able item.

Glenn: I think this interpretation is missing the primary point. Mt 23:23

Russ: Mt 23:23 is a discussion of "matters of the law" and was addressed to OT scribes and Pharisees before Calvary. Jesus must teach obedience to the law for Hebrews according to Gal 4:4-5 but he could not command Gentiles to tithe either to himself or to the Temple because it was illegal.

Glenn: Let's review New Testament passages which lead me to believe a higher standard of giving is normative for Christians.

Russ: The "higher standard" has nothing to do with tithing which only applied to food producers who lived inside Israel. The higher standard of giving is: freewill, generous, freewill, not by commandment and motivated by love --not law.

Glenn: The widow's mite is an example of NT higher standards.

Russ: This was before Calvary. She was giving a sacrificial freewill offering and not a tithe. She did not qualify as a tithe-payer.

Glenn: After Pentecost the new believers were incredibly generous with giving and helping. It does not appear they limited themselves to a tithe: Acts 2:42-47)

Russ: According to Acts 2:46 the early Jewish Christians continued to worship in the Temple which is proof they still supported it with tithes and offerings. According to Acts 21:20 (over 30 years later) they were still zealously giving tithes to the Temple system.

Glenn: (2 Corinthians 8:1-7) (1 Cor 16:1-2)(2 Corinthians 9:6-13)

Russ: Most tithe-teachers say that these are discussions of freewill offerings beyond the tithe and discount your correct arguments.

Glenn: are we cursed by God?
The work of Christ at the cross delivers Christians from the curse of the Mosaic Law, because the law has been fulfilled in Christ.

Russ: Gentile Christians never were under the curse of the law which was only given to national Israel. Ex 19:5-6; Lev 27:34; Neh 10:29; Mal 4:4.

Glenn: Everything we have is God's, not just X%. (See Psalm 24:1)

Russ: While that was also true in the OT, it was never used as a reason to receive tithes from outside of God's special holy land of Israel.

Glenn: We should support missions outreach (many passages)

Russ: Tithes were never used to support missions in the OT.

Glenn: Therefore many Christians have looked at 10% of income going to their local church as a good starting point, and then giving to special events/needs and to support the poor above and beyond that. I think this is a reasonable approach, but will not make it an expectation or mark of a "true" believer.

Russ: The SBC Position Paper demands that tithing be taught as an expectation. The "good starting point" sounds good but it is not biblical since OT tithe-payers were only those who earned a living off God's holy land of Israel.

Glenn: I cannot support the statement "Christians should give 10% of their income to their local church" specifically from Scripture.

Russ: Then do not even attempt to support tithing by calling a "good place to start" or a "reasonable approach."