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Goodbye Jesus

Nt Contradiction About Law And Priesthood


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I posted this over on Earlywritings. Anyone have any views? The gist: Matthew 5 has Jesus saying he came, not to abolish the law, but to fulfill it, and not a jot or tittle can pass away from the law until all is accomplished.  The Epistle to the Hebrews on the other hand says the law was only temporary and never was the real thing in the first place.  Here's what I wrote in the post on Earlywritings:


"It seems to me that [the epistle to the] Hebrews conflicts with what is said about the Torah in Matthew 5, but perhaps not - there are different views on what "fulfill the law" means. Anyway, the writer of Hebrews insists that the sacrificial system and priesthood set up in Exodus was 1) temporary, now superseded by a different priesthood ([Jesus is a priest forever according to the] order of Melchizedek), and 2) was only a shadow [priesthood] anyway. As I understand this exposition, it conflicts with the words put in Jesus' mouth in Matt. 5, where he says he has come, not to abolish/undermine the law or the prophets, but to fulfill them, and that, until heaven and earth pass away, not a jot or tittle can be taken away from the law, until all "shall be accomplished" (γενήσεται). As he goes on to stress inward holiness as the kernel of the law's demands, it doesn't seem as though "all shall be accomplished" refers to the crucifixion (as the author of Hebrews might have it) but to the end of the world.

Anyway, a thought: could Hebrews predate the gospels and perhaps the [Jewish] Revolt, while Matthew, perhaps written after the Revolt, offers a corrective to the view of the law of Moses that found expression in Hebrews?

Maybe I'm wrong and all the author of Hebrews wants to downgrade are sacrifices and the Levitical priesthood. But those parts of the law as explicated in Exodus and Deuteronomy seem to be folded into the law as Jesus speaks about it globally in Matt. 5."




One member of Earlywritings, Ben C. Smith, thought "the Christian traditions that come across as law-affirming always tend to sound and feel to me like traditions from Palestine and Syria, while those that come across as law-abrogating always tend to sound and feel to me like traditions from the Diaspora (Rome, Greece, Egypt, and so on)."

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