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how to tell the biblical story in a way that makes a difference

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Andrew,

You stated:

If Israel had repented following the judgment of AD 70, not doubt the Law would have stayed in force for God’s people.

I can’t figure out how you could possibly state that. Let’s consider what Paul teaches in Gal. 3

19 Why then the law? It was added because of transgressions, until the offspring should come to whom the promise had been made, and it was put in place through angels by an intermediary. 20Now an intermediary implies more than one, but God is one. 21 Is the law then contrary to the promises of God? Certainly not! For if a law had been given that could give life, then righteousness would indeed be by the law. 22 But the Scripture imprisoned everything under sin, so that the promise by faith in Jesus Christ might be given to those who believe. 23 Now before faith came, we were held captive under the law, imprisoned until the coming faith would be revealed. 24 So then, the law was our guardian until Christ came, in order that we might be justified by faith. 25 But now that faith has come, we are no longer under a guardian, 26 for in Christ Jesus you are all sons of God, through faith.
I think Paul’s words are pretty clear concerning Israel’s relationship with the law. Let’s consider another passage. Hebrews 8:13
13 In speaking of a new covenant, he makes the first one obsolete. And what is becoming obsolete and growing old is ready to vanish away.
The writer is clear that God was (had to) establishing a new covenant with Israel. At the point in time of Hebrews being written the Law was already obsolete and would soon vanish away (remove permanently). This was completed when Israel had completed her new 40 year journey through the desert (AD 30-70) and then entered the “promise land”. And just as before, unfaithful Israel was judged and died in the desert while faithful Israel (the remnant - Rom. 9-11) went on to enter the promise land via resurrection into the body of Christ. Thus the entire old covenant system (the old heaven and earth) was brought to an end. What possible reason would the Law remain? The Law served as a “administration of death” over Israel (2 Cor. 3:7). And as Paul stated in 1 Cor. 15:
56 The sting of death is sin, and the power of sin is the law. 57 But thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.
The law is what gave sin power over Israel. Israel needed rescued from it. That was the very function of her Christ. Jesus came to provide Israel a way out from under its power. He (Israel’s second Adam - which in itself shows that Adam was not the progenitor of the entire human race) was born under the Law (Gal. 4:4), died to it, and was then born again. Israel herself now had to die (via baptism into the death of Christ) and be raised again (John 3:7) in the resurrected body of Christ (1 Cor. 15). Once she was raised the Law could then be removed. It had no more function. That is why Paul connects the law to the resurrection in 1 Cor. 15. The fact that the law has been removed testifies that the Resurrection has been completed! To insist that Israel’s resurrection hasn’t happened yet is to testify that the Law is still active over Israel. Of course the fact that the temple is gone testifies differently. It seems to be that your words above are exactly the error that the Judaizers who were attacking Paul were teaching. They insisted that while one needed to have faith in Christ they also had to maintain the law. This is why they insisted that the Gentile needed to be circumcised. They wanted to bring the Gentile under the law with them. You’ve written an entire book on Romans Andrew. You’ve read Galatians probably a million time. How can you hold to such a view? -Rich