Strength, love, courage, honor: Sounds pretty biblical. Sounds pretty manly.
Covering Exodus 23:10-19, in this audio teaching (the audio of a live webinar), we make a parallel with the shemitah year and the gospel. This is from our weekly Thursday night webinar Bible study.
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God is a realist. He doesn’t expect you to change your feelings towards your enemy. But he does expect you to help him. Learn how as we work our way through Exodus 22:29-23:9
Most Christians today don’t really understand what the gospel which Jesus and his followers preached actually is.
According to the sages, there are as many as forty-six prohibitions against mistreating the stranger in the Torah. But how is this defined?
Chapters 24-25 in the gospel of Matthew are very scary and difficult to reconcile with traditional Church doctrine and teaching. Using the Oral Law, we unravel the mysteries of the parable of the talents, in relation to Exodus 22, and discover how the Master’s audience would have heard him, and what would have surprised them about his teaching.
“Form many groups and study Torah, for the Torah is only acquired through study in a group.” (Talmud, Berakhot 63b)
Ideas such as Sola Scriptura undermine the process of learning that is required in a community setting, where the open sharing of thoughts and ideas must be encouraged and not discouraged, in an environment of reverence and respect for the leaders.
Unfortunately, the concept which runs rampant within the Church and the Messianic world is that every individual believer can read the Bible for themselves and determine what it means on any subject matter, on their own, without the help of others or the opinions or traditions of alternate viewpoints being brought to bear. This may sound wonderfully idealistic, but it’s just not possible.
No matter who you are, and regardless of how objective you think your approach is, you are no doubt highly influenced by an inherited tradition of interpretation. You may think that you came to a conclusion on your own, but if we could rewind the movie of your life, we would find a moment (more likely a series of reinforced moments) in which your understanding was suggested to you by a trusted source of information. This is how learning happens. This is a wonderful aspect of human relationship.
But there is an interesting psychological phenomenon which occurs in our brains, causing us to attach emotion to opinions which we embrace, forging, over time, an impenetrable wall which enshrines these opinions as facts, building layer upon layer of supporting evidence while dismissing any “facts” which seem to contradict it. In psychology, this is called confirmation bias, and we are all guilty of it. It’s part of how we survive in the world. It’s a healthy aspect of how God has wired us, when understood and not allowed to stop the process of seeking truth.