Is the “Law of Moses” Valid for Today?
But their minds were blinded; for until this day
the same veil remains untaken away in reading the Old Testament;
which veil is done away in Messiah.
But even unto this day, when Moses is read, the veil is upon their heart.
Nevertheless when they shall turn to YaHuWaH,
the veil shall be taken away.
You ask my interpretation of 2Cor.3:14-16. Well, I will do my utmost to share Scriptureʼs interpretation for our own interpretation, which in any case is forbidden, is usually the result of our preconceived ideas. But before I share with you, allow me to first give my testimony with regard to this specific text.
Personal testimony is always good for it is a practical example of how the Ruach (Spirit) works with each one and gives guidance through the Scriptures.
Before my testimony, I want to share a word that I have just read.
It is frightening, and therefore I have an urgency to share the importance of our Fatherʼs Torah with His children.
Hold me up and I shall be saved,
and I will respect Your laws continually.
You have trodden down all those that turn from Your statutes;
for their deceit is falsehood.
You put away all the wicked of the earth like dross;
therefore I love Your testimonies.
My flesh trembles for fear of You, and I am afraid of Your judgments.
The loving Father of John 3:16 “treads down” people and “puts them away”, treating them like dross??? Thatʼs not what I say, it is clearly stated in His Word which is forever settled in heaven, (Ps.119:89). But He only destroys those who decide to turn away from His Laws or Torah. And yes, He knows every heart, also those hearts that despise His Torah. In stark contrast verse 117 says that those who are saved (through believing in Messiahʼs death on their behalf) will always have respect for His Laws – they will abide by them, guard and keep them.
In Messiah Yahusha the Fatherʼs incomprehensible love is perfect and complete. We will never fully understand His love. It is not cheap. It is a love that expects us to worship Him on His conditions. From His human-creatures He demands obedience to His Instructive teachings that, in love, He provided for our own good. In His amazing grace He also provides us with the ability to walk in obedience. No true believer can afford to ignore the following verses. They are the words of the same Mighty One (Elohim) that revealed His love to us in John 3:16. Also, it confirms Psalm 119:118 quoted above.
Know therefore that YaHuWaH your Elohim, He is Elohim,
the faithful Elohim who keeps covenant and mercy
with them that love Him and keep His commandments
to a thousand generations;
And He repays them that hate Him to their face, to destroy them.
He will not be slack to him that hates Him,
He will repay him to his face.
You shall therefore keep the commandments, and the statutes,
and the judgments, which I command you this day, to do them.
Therefore it shall come to pass,
if you listen to these judgments, and keep, and do them,
that YaHuWaH your Elohim shall keep unto you
the covenant and the mercy that He swore unto your fathers.
Notice He states that the Torah will be kept for a thousand generations. If a generation is at least 40 years, then a thousand generations will be at least 40,000 years. Human history, according to Scripture has been about 6000 years. The Torah will be abided by for a long long time to come – throughout the thousand year Messianic Kingdom on this earth, which is only about 25 generations. In other words, just as Messiahʼs instructions to forgive 70 X 7 does not mean that we have to keep account and stop forgiving when we reach 490, so a thousand generations of Torah observance is in reality forever.
Did you know that the Creator also regards some prayers as abominable? That sounds unbelievable, doesnʼt it? And yet it is true if we regard the Word as being truth.
He that turns away his ear from hearing the Torah
even his prayer shall be abomination.
Now how do such verses relate to 2 Corinthians 3:14-16? This so-called New Testament portion of Scripture is an apparent big problem for us who are striving to return to the Torah of YaHuWaH. I ask this question for at a first reading of the Corinthian text it seems as if anyone who reads the Old Testament, and specifically the “Law of Moses”, have a veil over their heart (mind). This means that they will not understand the Scriptures correctly. If, just by reading His instructions and commands, the result will be a veil over our hearts that blind our understanding, how will it ever be possible to walk in obedience to these instructions?
This interpretation is totally illogical and unacceptable. For if anyone wants to understand any subject, regardless of what it is, then that subject needs to be read and studied. Therefore it is actually the reading of Moses and the Old Testament that is the first step toward understanding it and therefore also understanding the rest of Scripture. A correct understanding of the New Testament is only possible within the context of its foundation – the Law and the Prophets. Scripture says that the new will be revealed from the old, (Is.41:26 & 46:10).
Then what about 2Cor.3:14-16? Well, before attempting to let Scripture interpret itself in this regard, allow me to share my personal testimony concerning the veil over the heart when Moses is read.
It was in 1981, soon after my family and I broke away from the Dutch Reformed Church, that these verses from the second Corinthian letter became a “revelation” to me. One Sunday morning, in the Charismatic congregation where we became committed, the pastor preached on this text and actually blinded my eyes to the truth without me even being aware of it. It was then, through listening to man without also studying the Scriptures for myself, that a veil was placed over my mind with regard to the true understanding of Scripture.
Suddenly it was a “revelation” to me that the Old Testament, and specifically the “Law of Moses” was the reason for the lack of life that permeated most churches. The reading of the Old Testament veiled their spiritual eyes. That was my so-called “revelation”.
From that time I turned my back on most of the Old Testament and totally on the five books of Moses. I blamed these “legalistic” books for my struggle to really comprehend the Scriptures. That was my reasoning. Every Sunday morning the Dutch Reformed congregations would read the Ten Commandments or the summary thereof.
Then the minister would explain just how bad sinners we were, but that in Christ we were set free from sin. Although it was never expressly mentioned, the concepts of SIN and LAW were bound together. In effect they became synonymous in our “veiled” minds. That is how the “sheep” understood it.
I can still clearly remember as a young deacon on one particular occasion that I approached our minister and asked him: “What do we believe?” It never occurred to me to ask this question personally of my Father and then search the Scriptures for answers. Now, many years later, I know that it is not the LAW that is SIN, but rather LAWLESSNESS – disobedience to the LAW that is SIN, 1John 3:4.
When the charismatic pastor “opened” these verses in second Corinthians for us that Sunday morning, I suddenly understood it all (or so I thought), and from then began to despise the “Law of Moses” and to a lessor degree, the Prophets. I just sought out the good promises in the Old Testament – including the nice ones in the five books of Moses and held on to them for dear life, (how totally blind I was). I never recognized that every promise was invariably linked to a condition of obedience to the despised Law.
Isnʼt it ironic that it was the rejection of the Law that veiled my mind, and brought spiritual darkness into my heart. From then on I began to preach against the “cursed Law”. I never knew that “Law” was a weak translation of the Hebrew word Torah which could be more accurately translated as INSTRUCTIONS or TEACHINGS to point and guide one towards RIGHTEOUSNESS (right living).
May YaHuWaH forgive me for the darkness that, in ignorance, I sowed into the hearts and minds of precious believers. May He now use me as His instrument to lift the veil caused by ignorance. This is my personal testimony, therefore I can share it freely without judging anyone else. At that time I became friends with one of the prominent “Grace” teachers of South Africa. These people almost worship GRACE and hate the Torah. They are extremely well-spoken and their “teachings” come almost exclusively from the writings of Paul. It was truly the grace of my heavenly Father that prevented me and my family from getting caught up in the web of this “hyper grace” cultic movement.
Is the “Law of Moses” a Veil?:
If this is how we interpret it, then more questions are created than answered. For the whole of Scripture of which the five books of Moses are the foundation, teaches us that the Torah (Instructions of YaHuWaH for righteous living – Ps.119:1) is LIGHT. Look at Proverbs 6:23 for example.
For the COMMANDMENT is a LAMP,
and the Torah is LIGHT,
and admonishment of INSTRUCTION are the WAY of LIFE.
The seven words that I have capitalized in this significant verse are all synonymous with Torah.
David, the man after the heart of the Father, teaches us that the Torah (YaHuWaHʼs WORD) is literally the LAMP that enlightens the WAY to LIFE, Ps.119:105. In another place he says: For with You is the FOUNTAIN of LIFE; in Your LIGHT shall we see LIGHT. Ps.36:9. How then is it possible that this LIGHT could ever be a veil that covers and darkens the heart and mind? How can LIGHT cause darkness? Utterly impossible! If there was the slightest bit of truth in this, then Scripture is speaking in circles.
The very first creative words spoken by the Almighty was: LET THERE BE LIGHT. With those words He forever put in place the physics “law” that LIGHT would always expel (totally annihilate) darkness. Where there is LIGHT, darkness just cannot exist. This first “Word” of the Creator that is recorded in Scripture, is literally Him inserting Himself into His physical creation. He is creationʼs LIGHT – the very Source of it. Four thousand years after He, in Spirit, accessed His creation, that same WORD (LIGHT) became flesh in the Person of Messiah Yahusha, Joh.1:14. He is the WORD. He is the LIGHT. He is the LIFE giving Torah. For that reason the prophet warns so urgently:
Woe unto them that call evil good, and good evil;
that put darkness for light, and light for darkness… (Is.5:20)
If the Torah is YaHuWaHʼs LIGHT for mankind as the Scriptures constantly affirm, then the above verse is a serious warning to those who teach that it is not good for us – a curse – that plunges us into darkness. That is why they also teach that Messiah Himself abolished it. Imagine that? He came to extinguish His Fatherʼs LIGHT to this world!
To believe that the Torah causes darkness is exactly the same as saying: “Please switch off the light so that I can see to read the New Testament”. Absolute nonsense and foolishness!
And yet we “see” in the New Testament that the reading of the Torah apparently places a veil over our understanding. But actually it makes much better logical sense that those who walk in the LIGHT of Torah are the ones who understand the Scriptures as a whole – that the entire Scripture is a single unit (WORD) that does not contradict itself. If we understand Scripture to be a perfect ONENESS (Heb. ECHAD), as its Author is ONE (Deut.6:4 & Joh.10:30), then we will see that the Torah is in actual fact the revelation of His grace and incredible compassion, forgiveness, loving-kindness, magnanimity and beneficence towards all, including the very ones who despise His Torah, if they were to turn (repent) from their wicked (Torahless) ways – and NOT the other way around as so many teach. Consider the following verses:
And YaHuWaH descended in the cloud,
and stood with him (Mosheh) there,
and proclaimed the Name of YaHuWaH.
And YaHuWaH passed by before him, and proclaimed,
YaHuWaH, YaHuWaH Elohim, merciful and gracious,
longsuffering, and abundant in goodness and truth.
Keeping mercy for thousands,
forgiving iniquity (Lawlessness) and transgression and sin,
and who will by no means clear the guilty…
This is precisely what John the Immerser explained with regard to the Messiahʼs mission – the very same ONE who spoke those astonishing words to Mosheh on the mountain:
And of His fullness have all we received, and grace for grace.
For the Torah was given by Mosheh,
but grace and truth came by Yahusha Messiah.
This text does not teach us that the so-called Old Testament has become obsolete and done away with by Messiah. As a matter of fact it is the Torah and the Prophets that furnishes absolute proof that Yahusha is the Messiah – the Great LIGHT that shines in the darkness, Is.9:2 & Mat.4:16. If reading the Torah was a veil, how then would we ever recognize Yahusha as the Messiah?
For at one time you were darkness,
but now you are LIGHT in YaHuWaH; walk as children of LIGHT.
For the fruit of the Spirit is in all goodness and righteousness and truth;
Proving what is acceptable unto YaHuWaH.
And have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness,
but rather reprove them.
Why, with Yahushaʼs transfiguration on the mountain, did Mosheh who represented the Torah, and EliYahu (Elijah) who represented the Prophets, appear with Him? That incident by itself is ample proof that the Tanakh (OT) writings reveal Him as the Messiah of Yisra’El. Without these writings we would never have known Him.
What is happening today as a result of “the Law is a curse” teaching, is that people are following the false, Lawless Jesus Christ. They are not following the true Messiah Yahusha who observed and fulfilled His Fatherʼs beloved Torah one hundred percent on behalf of every believer. The concept of “the Law is fulfilled” is the concept of Grace – that He, through perfect obedience, accomplished Torah observance “in” us. Therefore, the written Torah was given through Mosheh, and GRACE (fulfilling and revealing Torah in us) came to fruition through Yahusha Messiah.
I was guilty of using 2 Corinthians 3:14-16 to write-off the Foundation of Scripture. What is more I taught others so.
I believe that this text can and should be interpreted as follows. No one can understand Scripture outside of the revelation of it by the Spirit of Truth – the Anointing (Mashiach) that comes “in” the Name of Yahusha, Joh.14:26. Allow me to enlarge on that statement, for most believers would agree with it and yet there are several opposing interpretations of the 2Cor.3 portion that we are looking at.
We know that the Spirit is the Anointing according to YeshaYaHU (Isaiah) 61:1 & Luke 4:18. Therefore only the Spirit of Truth will reveal the truth to the seeker after truth. Naturally all these contrary interpretations look good and right as they were designed by the enemy to confuse. But they are false. How can we be certain what the truth is? There is only one way. The true interpretation will be the one that is revealed by the Spirit of Truth.
The question is: How can we recognize the Spirit of Truth? It will be the one that does not contradict Scripture. Or put in another way: The Spirit of Truth will never be contradicted by any Scripture. Why will He never be contradicted by or contradict Scripture? Because He is the Author of Scripture. Yahusha, the Living Word (Scripture) – His written Word was inspired by His Spirit. (2Pet.1:21).
Every interpretation of this text that I have heard, contradicts a large body of Scripture. Therefore they do not originate from the Spirit of Truth, and are therefore not the true interpretation. Briefly every false interpretation can be summarized as follows:
If any person, Christian or non Christian, exerts himself to the study of the Old Testament and especially the five books of Mosheh, his mind will be veiled and he will not understand the New Testament which does away with the Old Testament of the Jews.
Now I want to say something very radical that I believe to be truth that is confirmed by Scripture. If the Name of Messiah is the Anointing (Set-Apart Character, Power, Authority and Presence) of the King, according to Ex.3:14-15, Song.1:3, Mar.16:15-18 and Mat.18:20, then a false name, created by man and given to the King, will create a false anointing. Then it is understandable that those who believe in and sentimentally cling to “Jesus Christ” being the name of the Hebrew Messiah, will invariably believe in and proclaim a “lawless gospel”.
It was the true Name that was proclaimed without apology by His disciples both during His earthly ministry and after His ascension, Mar. 6:14 & Acts 3:16, 4:7, 10, 12, 17 & 30, 5:28, 9:14-16 & 21.
The title Messiah can be attached to both the Anointed Person, as well the actual Anointing of that Person – The Anointed One and His Anointing. Therefore when Scripture speaks of Yahusha Messiah (Heb. Yahusha haMashiach and Jesus Christ in our Bible translations) then it is telling us that the Person with the Name Yahusha is Anointed, and also that the Name Yahusha is the Anointing. Is that not precisely what Song 1:3 is teaching us? The Renewed Covenant book of Acts also confirms this concept.
Remember how Kefa (Peter) and Yahuchanan (John) healed man who was born crippled, at the temple entrance? That miracle was performed in the Name of Yahusha. But it is interesting and most significant that when Kefa actually ministered to this man through spoken words, the title Messiah (Anointing) was attached to the Name Yahusha, which is the Anointing. After this miracle Kefa takes the opportunity to address the crowds that had gathered.
But you denied the Holy One and the Just,
and desired that a murderer be granted unto you:
And killed the Prince of life, whom Elohim has raised from the dead:
of which we are witnesses.
And His Name through faith in His Name has made this man strong,
whom you see and know;
yes, the faith which is by Him
has given him this perfect healing in the presence of you all.
This incident resulted in the arrest of the two disciples. When they appeared before the Jewish religious council (Sanhedrin), Kefa, with great boldness testified of the Power and Authority vested in this Anointed Name after they were distinctly asked about it.
And when they had set them in the midst, they asked;
By what Power, or by what Name, have you done this?
Then Kefa, filled with the Set-apart Spirit, said unto them,
You rulers of the people, and elders of Israel.
If we this day be examined of the good deed done to the cripple man,
by what means he was made whole;
Be it known unto you all, and to all the people of Israel,
that by the Name of Yahusha Messiah of Nazareth,
whom you impaled, whom Elohim raised from the dead,
even by Him does this man sand here before you whole.
This is the stone which was set at nought of you builders,
which is become the head of the corner.
Neither is there salvation in any other;
for there is no other name under heaven given among men,
whereby we must be saved.
Messiah (Anointing) Yahusha is the Person who bears the Name that is both the Corner Stone and the Foundation upon which must be built.
Now therefore you are no longer strangers and foreigners,
but fellow citizens with the set-apart ones,
and of the household of Elohim.
And are built upon the Foundation of the apostles and prophets,
Yahusha Messiah Himself being the Chief Corner Stone.
In whom all the building fitly framed together
grows unto a set-apart temple in YaHuWaH.
The prophets of whom are spoken here include Mosheh, Deut.18:15. Therefore the Torah (Living Word Yahusha, Joh.1:1 & 14) is the only Foundation (1Cor.3:11), and His Name, the only Corner Stone (Acts 4:11-12). There is no other, Acts 4:12. “Jesus” is another name. In this “other” name people preach against the Torah of YaHuWaH, and lawless pagan festivals such as Christmas and Easter are promoted.
Of course the enemy knows all this, that is why he uses religion and religious leaders to try and destroy the Name above all names. From our perspective he nearly succeeded. It is in this “other name” Jesus that the Torah (Law) is despised and written off by virtually the whole of Christendom.
What does all this have to do with 2Cor.3:14-16? Well, that text clearly says that the misunderstanding (veil over the mind) of the Old Testament can only be taken away by “Christ”. Letʼs now replace “Christ” with Messiah, and Messiah with Anointing, and Anointing with the Name – of course the true Name Yahusha not Jesus.
Thus, when we have the Key of His true Name, and use it, then this great veil of misunderstanding that the Torah is a curse and not valid for us any longer, will be taken away. If only Christians would accept Messiahʼs true Name (the true Anointing) and walk in it (Zech.10:12), while at the same time rejecting the false name (Jesus and the “Jesus is Lord” slogan), their eyes would be opened and they will see that the Torah is a living book of great value for their spiritual lives.
Both Christianity in general, and Judaism reject the true Name, therefore unknowingly the true Anointing of the Creator. Therefore it is these two religious institutions and their followers whose minds are veiled. The early Messianic congregation, under the guidance of the Spirit (Acts 15:28), recommended that new believers initially be taught to observe (obey) certain necessary Torah instructions. These believers would then later, during Shabbat meetings get to know the rest of the Torah teachings, Acts 15:17-21.
My personal experience is that the veil of misunderstanding the Torah of YaHuWaH was slowly but surely removed from my mind since I received the revelation of the Name and its significance.
Speaking the truth in love
Written and shared with us by our beloved brother Johann Moller