Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Why the Pharisees Kept the Law Meticulously

This passage in Schreiner gave me an insight into the reason why the Jews pursued meticulous adherence to the law that I had not considered before.
"The Qumran community and the Pharisees believed that if the Torah were kept more faithfully, God would fulfill his promises.  Israel had been unfaithful to the Lord because it repeatedly sinned and violated his law.  Hence, they urged rigorous and meticulous observance of the ways of the Lord.  By way of contrast, Jesus called on the people to repent and to recognize that God had sent him.  The focus is not on the Torah but on Jesus himself and a right relation with him.  What Jesus call for was, in one sense, stunningly simple, but it was also remarkably different from the views of his contemporaries, and so opposition arose.    Thomas Schreiner, New Testament Theology, p. 52, Italics mine. 

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