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The Teacher of Righteousness versus Teachers of Law
Teachers of Law versus False Doctrine!
Apostle Paul says in 1 Timothy to Timothy and all of Christ's disciples, " ...stay in Ephesus so that you may command certain men not to teach false doctrines any longer nor to devote themselves to myths and endless genealogies. These promote controversies rather than God's work - which is by faith. The goal of this command is love, which comes from a pure heart and a good conscience and a sincere faith. Some have wandered away from these and turned to meaningless talk. They want to be teachers of the Law, but they do not know what they are talking about or what they so confidently affirm."
Paul refers to many issues of that time period but much of it is very relevant to the believing population of today.
The most common comparison to the above passage is that of believers, instead of focusing on following God's commands they are centering their thoughts and christian walk on non-biblical and non-Godly things, they have entered into the trap 'of worldly interests' such as genealogies and things that are based on theory not fact. They indulge in trivia- meaningless things that do nothing to improve the individuals spiritual growth. Believers do not seek to increase their faith or to acquire the gifts such as love and faith, which are gifts provided by God to equip us in our walk of righteousness.
Instead of seeking to improve oneself, individuals are drifting along with the worldly tide under the disguise that 'all is well, God loves me that it does not matter what I do or don't do in my life- he will still love me'.
This is one of the deceptions sweeping the churches!
Yeshua has covered your sin yes, so that you are seen as perfect, but it does not mean that you can do just as you like, ignore the rules, and escape consequences!
God saw fit to punish his CHOSEN PEOPLE, whom he loves, the apple of His eye! DO you honestly think you are better than them? When you do not even follow Christ's directions on how to behave?
Brothers and sisters - you are being deceived! Yeshua has given you much guidance throughout scripture showing you how to EXCEED the righteousness of the Pharisees.
The Pharisees were strict orthodox (in today's terms) they added to God's Torah, making it more difficult for his people to follow. They increased the rules so that Jews had to struggle to maintain obedience to the Pharisee 'cultic' Judaism in addition to God's Laws - it was too much - the people could not manage it.
However, Yeshua is not suggesting this- all of his requirements exceed the Pharisees law because it is based on a sure foundation and not on a humanistic religious cult. Yeshua bases his requirements on the original Torah laws but expands on them so that it becomes clear and separate from the false teachings of the Pharisees. The same has happened today. Many false doctrines and religious cults come under the guise of Christianity and Judaism. It is important to recognise the need to go back to the roots- the basics- for the true Torah and Yeshua's true teachings that are based on a sure foundation that can only assist the individual into a real righteousness as required by God to become a true 'born again' child of God!
Turn to Revelation 2 The church of Ephesus, Paul mentions in 1 Timothy that Timothy - a young man should remain in Ephesus to speak to the leaders regarding false teachings, he is too speak about getting away from fruitless talks and to work on building their faith and to reach the heights of Godly love! In the second chapter of Revelation, the church of Ephesus is described in more detail. Yeshua directly addresses the church.
" I know your deeds, your hard work and your perseverance. I know that you cannot tolerate wicked men, that you have tested those who claim to be apostles but are not, and have found them false. You have persevered and have endured hardships for my name, and have not grown weary. Yet I hold this against you: you have forsaken your first love. Remember the height from which you have fallen! Repent and do the things you did at first. If you do not repent, I will come to you and remove your lampstand from its place. But you have this in your favour. You hate the practices of the Nicolaitans which I also hate.... to him who overcomes, I will give the right to eat from the tree of life, which is in the paradise of God."
This says several things to us.
1. When 'born again' we may receive salvation but not necessarily eternal life! The tree of life is offered to us on the condition we follow Christ's example.
2. He gives us an example of how to follow him, he compares his own and our hate for nicolaitans (these are believers who compromise their faith in order to enjoy the sinful practices of society. They falsely call themselves 'apostles' These people would make excuses to justify their behaviour saying ' it will be alright, it will not hurt your faith.' BUT it does hurt your faith- it holds you back from receiving all that God has for you to help you to eat from the tree of life!
3. The above passage also tells us that although we are doing some things right that God approves of, it is not enough to finally allow us to be accepted into the eternal place to eat from the tree of life!
4' Lastly and most important when you have entered into worldly pursuits you have forgotten your first love! God!
Can you remember how you felt when you first entered God's kingdom, through Yeshua, your saviour? The peace, the assurance, your enthusiasm to learn all about him, your desire to do everything to please him, your eagerness to tell others about him, and your yearning to learn more and acquire more regarding his gifts, his word and his guidance. Do you remember how much time you devoted to prayer and praise? Do you remember how you could not get enough teaching, you wanted to absorb everything like a sponge, because you just wanted to grow in faith and understanding? Go back to that time, rekindle your desire to follow Yeshua's teachings and his example of how we should behave.
Paul continues to say to Timothy (1 Tim 1:8) " We know that the law is good if one uses it properly. We also know that law is made not for the righteous but for lawbreakers and rebels, the ungodly and sinful, the unholy and irreligious, for those who kill their fathers or mothers, for murderers, for adulterous and perverts, for slave traders and liars and perjurers - and for whatever else is contrary to the sound doctrine that conforms to the glorious gospel of the blessed God ..."
To sum up: If you are following Yeshua's example and his teachings in every way then you are performing a righteous life, in keeping with the requirements as stated by Yeshua to the Ephesians and us today! You will have no need to follow Torah if you are following Yeshua's example. If however you are as the Ephesians then you will need to read the Torah law to understand where you are going wrong and you will need to exceed the laws by turning back to your first love - and accept Yeshua's ways and teachings. This means turning your back on the worldly ways- the sins of the world - on myths and false teachings!
Christ is the only way to salvation and the only way to eternal life ( eating from the tree of life).
Christ the son of God (our father) is our means of becoming a child of God, through faith in him as our leader and teacher of truth! Yeshua has replaced the Torah's sacrificial lamb, as our personal sacrificial lamb- for our atonement. He has also become the sin bearer instead of the Torah scapegoat. And finally he has become the Red Heiffer sacrifice as the way for us to become consecrated unto the Lord.