Old & New testaments complimenting and fulfilling.

edited December 1969 in Faith Issues
I have come across faithfuls issuing varying and contradicting statements about the new and old testaments: for example some believe the new testament has come to nulify the former while others have said the old testament has been replaced with the new testament because the former is barbaric and cruel.
Infact, a lot of us concentrate on reading inductions from the new testament only.
However, I believe Christ was very clear on this in his famous speech that he has not come to destroy but rather to fulfill the scripture.
Lots of friends of mine have justified abandoning some of the teaching of the old testament on this account.
Please any ideas?


  • It only requires someone with basic reading comprehension to understand that Christ came to fulfill the law. The question is how are we to interpret it? Being Orthodox Christians, we remain faithful to the authority of the Church to interpret the Scriptures, simply because that authority itself derives from God.

    Nevertheless, as this is really quite a basic issue we can put Holy Spirit-inspired Tradition aside for a second, and let common sense guide us.

    The fulfillment of the Law is equivalent to the exegesis and completion of the Law; the ushering in of a new era in which the Law takes on a new significance and meaning that corresponds to its original intention and purpose. Christ demonstrated this on numerous occasions.

    As an example, He demonstrated the completion of the dietry laws when He explained that it is not what enters the stomach of a man that makes him unclean...which is needless to say, a very wise and common sense teaching, since it is absurd to think that the consumption of a type of food has implications with regard to a person's spiritual condition--their righteousness and salvation. Christ in essence exegeted the law, debasing it of the legalistic interpretation that the Pharisees imputed upon it. He had the authority to do so, for He, being God since the ages, was the author of the Law--the "Lord of the Sabbath". The Pharisees had missed the essence of the law, which, in its historical context, had the purpose of maintaining the uniqueness of Israel's identity amongst the corrupt and pagan infested nations that surrounded and dwelt amongst her.
  • A definitive response corroborated by the affirmation of reasonable explication that underscores the actual heart behind the Law and avoids stifling by the letter of the law. As Iqbal expounds, the revelation of the New Testament is means of ascertaining the reasoning behind Old Testament laws. Christ never abolished Old Testament explicatives....He merely served to raise the moral law of the past to a higher position that essentially renounced certain practices and, as was noted, enabled the "ushering in of a new era" for the present. So came the establishment of higher moral values bequeathing even greater responsibility upon God's people. It is simply fallacious for your friends to suggest that the teachings of God's commandments in antiquity can be disregarded; at most one can allot reformation of certain practices in light of inspired revelation.
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