6. Loose Ends
Biblical Law is just another term for following Christ. Covenants are a continuum from the Law Covenants up through faith covenant. The difference is how you approach it; it is what’s inside of you. The covenant that applies to you is based on your adherence to what Jesus taught, which in turn is what the Bible as a whole teaches today.
At the lowest level, the entry point is the Covenant of Noah. Right away the toughest pill to swallow for Western minds is that this ancient covenant requires a tribal social structure, feudal government and a covenant awareness. It points to the heart-led way, and this can eventually bring you to self-death. The next level is Biblical Law as Christ taught it. You cannot pursue this without a powerful sense of conviction; the heart-led way is required just to get in the door. It requires self-death on the Cross if you take it seriously.
From there you enter a faith covenant. This is utterly personal and individual in nature, though our knowledge of it goes back to Abraham. This is where Biblical Law is just the frame of reference for how to act on faith. It sweeps in all the requirements of Noah’s Covenant by default.
But the Covenant of Noah as the gateway is far broader in application; it is binding on the entire human race until Christ returns. All governments are measured against it. The provisions were inherent in Acts 15, but they can be listed:
1. No idolatry.
2. No abuse of God’s name (blasphemy, cursing, etc.).
3. There must be law enforcement against those who threaten social stability. This includes the death penalty for grave threats (see the Law of Moses for examples).
4. No unjustified taking of life, human or otherwise (all living things).
5. No sexual immorality: incest, adultery, bestiality, homosexuality, etc.
6. Respect for property ownership (to include the feudal system).
7. Blood is sacred; all flesh must be drained before cooking and eating (raw is generally forbidden).
The whole idea is not the restrictions, but the broader pattern of respect for God and His design. It’s a matter of tendencies, not hard and fast rules. The first step is to stop looking for loopholes. The actual wording may vary when you see it discussed elsewhere, but the underlying principles are easily understood. Any human government that fails to embrace these provisions is just another cattle herd in terms of how God deals with them. They receive no covenant blessings on any level, and they cannot be taken too seriously. Their fate is entirely a matter of God’s convenience.
On the other hand, we are generally forbidden from interfering with the Lord’s cattle herding. We are to infiltrate human institutions for the glory of the Lord, not to change the political situation. There are times when we will participate in whatever governments do, to include military service and perhaps even supporting a rebellion. You do so with the greatest of care and soul-searching. You participate only because that’s what God requires of you via your convictions, not because it might succeed at any particular goals. You jump in with full commitment of your fleshly life and don’t worry what people think about it.
But for the most part, we never take seriously the idea of changing a human government. Nothing of lasting importance happens there. Feel free to prophesy if God puts the burden on your heart. Give wise advice about specific issues based on revelation. Petition for redress of grievances if that’s allowed, but don’t expect much. Don’t get wrapped up in thinking some agency owes you respect or anything like that. The concept of rights is contrary to Scripture. All dealings with God’s cattle is a matter of heart-led truth and tactics. Don’t take yourself too seriously; do what the Lord commands in your heart simply because He commanded it.
God intended for the human race to live in small tribal clans. There is a right way to do imperial conquest, but it’s fundamentally evil in the long run. No one should have any say in your daily life unless they are related to you by blood or covenant. We also know beyond all doubt that no government will ever take such a thing seriously, so we can easily predict that God’s wrath will fall on every human government sooner or later. Our only real hope is that we can get our churches to organize on these principles and hope the human government won’t interfere overmuch.
We hope that outsiders will see our conduct mostly in terms of Noah’s Covenant; that’s as much Biblical Law as they can understand most of the time. But people who have been spiritually born have no excuse for failing to embrace the broader Biblical Law of Christ, never mind a genuine covenant of faith. The whole purpose of this book was to put Biblical Law and the blessings of Christ’s Covenant — the shalom heritage of the children of God — within easy reach.
We aren’t building a denomination or a new religion. We hope simply to create a parallel society that acknowledges the full revelation of Jesus Christ. Such a society will emphasize the heart-led way and the continuity of law and grace in revelation.
This is the end of the series, and the whole thing will be made into a book soon. This is your last chance to comment or request clarification.