Why Does the Old Testament Matter?

stonedcampbellharley1.jpgOver at the Stoned-Campbell Movement blog, Bobby Valentine has written an excellent post on how the Old Testament relates to Christianity.

You might also want to check the earlier posts here and here.

About Jay F Guin

My name is Jay Guin, and I’m a retired elder. I wrote The Holy Spirit and Revolutionary Grace about 18 years ago. I’ve spoken at the Pepperdine, Lipscomb, ACU, Harding, and Tulsa lectureships and at ElderLink. My wife’s name is Denise, and I have four sons, Chris, Jonathan, Tyler, and Philip. I have two grandchildren. And I practice law.
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0 Responses to Why Does the Old Testament Matter?

  1. josh keele says:

    Thanks for linking to this article that (I'm sure you didn't realize) is contrary to your own views. When Valentine speaks of the Old Testament as a bulwark against Paganism, I automatically think of Paganism as what it is, man determining how to worship God rather than God telling man how to worship, and up from the Old Testament jumps the incident with Nadab and Abihu to be a bulwark against this very thing. Your view of worship is, in Valentine's words, "a reversion to pagan normalcy."

  2. Jay Guin says:

    Josh,

    I've addressed the Nadab and Abihu argument a number of times, most recently at http://oneinjesus.info/2008/02/03/classes-on-grac

    I'm quite confident that Br. Valentine finds your interpretation of that passage as erroneous as I do. He is the co-author of A Gathered People. http://www.amazon.com/Gathered-People-Revisioning

    The book is reviewed and summarized here: http://www.wineskins.org/filter.asp?SID=2&fi_

  3. josh keele says:

    "I’m quite confident that Br. Valentine finds your interpretation of that passage as erroneous as I do."

    If so, then by his own accusation, he's a Marcionite.

  4. Jay Guin says:

    Josh,

    You never fail to be … well … Josh.

    Your argument appears to be —

    * I think the story of Nadab and Abihu means one thing

    * You think it means something else.

    * Therefore, you reject the entirety of the Old Testament.

    Such a view equates Josh with Joshua — and the other Old Testament writers. I'm not buying the argument.

    And I can't help but notice that you've not bothered to respond to my arguments. You simply hurl accusations premised on your own certainty in your conclusions.

    It's not persuasive.

  5. josh keele says:

    Your argument is that silence is only authoritative when it is supplemented by a command. God didn't tell them to use the type of the fire that they chose to use, but had he not also specified another type for them to use then that silence would not have had any authority. So, it was not because he was silent on not using type-B but because he specified to use type-A that they were condemned.

    Ok. But that's the way all the silence stuff goes. Moses spake nothing concerning anyone of the tribe of Judah being a priest on this earth. But in and of itself, Jay would say, that doesn't matter. It is only because he also specified the Levites as priests on earth that Jesus was precluded from being a priest while on earth.

    Ok. Now, God didn't tell us to use instruments of music in the New Testament. God did, however, tell us to sing. So, his being silent on instruments is meaningless until he added that we are to sing, then we're in the same situation as the other two examples. But here, Jay, you say "no–totally wrong. Nadab and Abihu and Jesus with the priesthood thing are totally different arguments than this one." But the arguments are exactly the same as anyone can see unless they are sold in slavery to a tuba.

  6. Jay Guin says:

    Josh wrote, "Your argument is that silence is only authoritative when it is supplemented by a command. God didn’t tell them to use the type of the fire that they chose to use, but had he not also specified another type for them to use then that silence would not have had any authority"

    Moses wrote, "(Lev 16:12-13) He is to take a censer full of burning coals from the altar before the LORD and two handfuls of finely ground fragrant incense and take them behind the curtain. 13 He is to put the incense on the fire before the LORD, and the smoke of the incense will conceal the atonement cover above the Testimony, so that he will not die."

    The fire to be used was fire from altar — fire which God himself lit.

    "Strange" is the same adjective used with respect to strange gods. Fire from the altar was God's fire. The strange fire was from some source other than God.

    And I have to ask: if God didn't specify the fire to use, how could they have used the wrong fire?

    It's an utterly false analogy to say that violating a command is the same as violating a silence.

  7. josh keele says:

    But they are always paired. For example, you might argue "God didn't say 'thou shalt not use multiple loafs in communion.'" Ok, so he did not say that. But he did say that we being many are one loaf for we partake of that one loaf. So silence is one side of a two sided coin.

  8. Gary Cummings says:

    Dear Josh,
    How in the world or in heaven can one "violate a silence". If nothing is stated, then nothing is violated is something is stated or done. Your view of silence is Zwinglian-see Thomas Olbricht on his book about the history of interpretation in the Churches of Christ.

    I really do think that brother Jay is correct in this discussion. The argument about silence being authoritative is absolutely ridiculous and has no theological or Biblical or hermeneutic merit.

    The Bible is silent about PA systems, or projectors or church buildings, microwave ovens, church kitchens, lightning rods (some Mennonite churches split over that one!), There is so much silence in the Bible about so many things. Let's get over it and into our freedom in Christ to live the life of the Kingdom of God here and now- a life of love and joy and peace in the Holy Spirit..
    God bless you,
    Gary

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