How much of the Old Testament is "valid"?

Jesus brought the world a new Covenant…

but He also said that not one jot or one tittle of the law shall pass away until all things are accomplished… (which i presume means until the world ends?)

Some people think that we should focus on the New Testament only (or mostly)…

God doesn’t change but some seem to think that we should disregard a lot of the OT.

I am wondering: Exactly what in the OT should we disregard??

(only the part about stoning those caught in adultery?)

It is all “valid”, and we can disregard none of it.

In the case of the laws and procedures set down, their particulars may change, but the underlying principles they support do not.

We no longer stone people, even people who commit adultery. But adultery is a very serious matter still. The errors that creep in - or in some cases, storm in - are of the type that argue against the principle, on the basis that the laws and procedures have been modified.

If the matter is serious and sinful in the Old Testament, then it remains serious and sinful, even though the sanctions directed against it are not today appropriate. Thus, the Ten Commandments have not become the Ten Points for Consideration and Discussion.

How can we know, one might ask, what is principle, and what is changeable law and procedure? Simply by listening to our Holy Mother the Church. Those who no longer do so are really at 6’s and 7’s when it comes to interpreting the Old Testament.



We most certainly should not focus only on the New Testament. The entire Bible paints the portrait of the eternal Word, Jesus Christ.

All things were accomplished on the cross, not at the end of the world.

As far as the Old Testamtent goes, most people get hung up on those laws that we obviously no longer follow (dietary restrictions, wardbrobe requirements, etc.). What helps is to look at the Pentateuch as a whole and see exactly what is going on. Look at Galatians 3:19: “Why then the law? It was added because of transgressions, till the offspring should come to whom the promise had been made.”

The law was added because of transgressions. When the Israelites first left Egypt and came to Mt. Sinai, God gave Moses the Ten Commandments. However, once the golden calf incident occurred, more laws were added (the Book of Leviticus, which necessitated animal sacrifice, among other things). 40 years later, as the wandering in the desert was coming to an end, there was another fall on the plains of Moab. After that, we get the Book of Deuteronomy, which allowed for things such as divorce and total warfare (totally annhilating the enemy down to the last man, woman, and child). These laws were added because of the hardness of their hearts (Matthew 19:8). God preferred divorce to the practice of men killing their wives in order to remarry. Total warfare was necessary because the Israelites had a proven track record of being converted by those around them rather than being the ones doing the converting. These are the types of laws that passed away with the coming of the new and everlasting covenant.

i totally agree.

But what does this mean:

6’s and 7’s when it comes to interpreting the Old Testament

thanks… are you a priest or something? You seem to know a lot about the Bible … history.

i didnt’ know that men used to kill their wives to remarry.

Is this where the saying Men are pigs comes from? :smiley: or did the feminists invent that one??

sorry… couldn’t resist…

anyway… i always wondered about that thing about killing everyone, women & children… thanks for clearning that up… i guess God figured, These people are so weak… they can’t even be exposed for one minute to those who believe differently… No wonder God lost his patience so often…

getting rid of everyone makes sense (sort of? just don’t like the idea of all that killing:eek:) because, well… even i - devout as i am in the RCC - sometimes wonder, when Protestants bring out their best ammo against certain things about the Church… the teachings… I get a ‘doubt’ here & there… (not so much anymore) but when i do, it never lasts…

Some peole who aren’t catechized well… jump ship… :frowning:

another reminder tht we all need to help catechize the world… :slight_smile:

Every part of the Old Testament contains a spiritual lesson for us today, none of it can be disregarded. :smiley:

And we must thoroughly support all of God’s will in the Old Testament, and love Him, as much as we do in the New.

For some people that takes a bit of work. Which should be a wake up call. :slight_smile:

Deo gratias.

have you run into non-Catholics who say - or act like - we should only focus on the New??

or that things in the Old are not now valid?

The unfulfilled prophecies are certainly still “valid”. They deal mostly with Jesus’ second coming and the restoration of the land and people of Israel. Kingdom details are also mentioned.

Concerning their validity, these prophecies are certainly nothing to write off as “iffy” things.

Also - we often see Jesus quoting the OT or following the law and celebrating things such as Passover.


All the time. Catholicism is very Old Testament comparatively. Much of Protestantism is entirely New Testament, and of that, very focused on a few pieces of it (oft misunderstood).

Nevertheless, it is true that movement of ‘New Testament’ only has worked its will and damage within the Church too, to a lesser degree. It takes work to overcome because it is not baby formula Catholicism, but the harder sterner stuff.

I love trying to embrace the Old Testament (some of the sermons below deal a good deal with it), it truly works interesting effects in the interior life. Beneficial. The Old Testament shows all the exterior virtues, the New Testament shows the spirit behind the exterior virtues and their raison d’etre.

The first priests for example, made when the Ten Commandments were delivered. Why God glorified them always remains in my mind. Priests of these times should remember it well.

good point.

and it doesn’t say anywhee in the NT that we should throw out the Old… or throw out anything IN the Old…

i know that sounds kind of sola scriptur-ish… but…

anyhow, i bet the gays are glad we threw out that stoning thing… :smiley:

and i’m sure bill Clinton is happy also…

my favorite thing tying the Old with the New is the Ark of the Covenant…
I love reading about it… because it is a fore-runner of the Tabernacle in the Catholic Churches, wherein lies the Body of Christ in a tangible way… not just symbolic… Christ is with us… he said he would not leave or forsake us… or make us “orphans” (St Mt 28:20)

I think Mary is considered the new Ark, isn’t she??

What a beautiful Ark… sin-less… and yet human… as the old Ark was not… it was just a box-like thing… yet it held the presence of God (or did God’s presence just hover around it / over it???)

In any case, it was God’s way of communicating with us and now we have the Real PResence… THAT would make me a Catholic if i didn’t know anything else abaout the RCC… :slight_smile:

True enough. Yet we have to remember, that stoning to death in the Old Testament was prescribed by God. And so, it is a just penalty for crimes. In the New Testament, Christ does not deny this – He is God after all, He simply extends mercy beyond it.

People take the approach to the worldly kind that justice and punishment do not exist for (only purported but unreal rehabilitation), that all penalties that are punishments are evil. That all crimes should only be ‘punished’ by ‘rehabilitation’ and ‘incarceration’ really just keeping criminals in a place where they purportedly cannot hurt others (this too is untrue).

This is not the case of how things works. The penalties in the Old Testament are merely, as prescribed in the Old Testament just – and not even justice without mercy.

Christ simply is showing an even greater mercy, that is necessary at times and very wonderous, all the more, because the penalty rescued from is in fact something one can justly deserve rather than an evil one does not necessarily.

yes… this reminds me of Michael Dukakis… he wanted to believe W. Horton was rehabilitat-able…

but society can not ever take such chances… Once someone has murdered (esp such a heinous crime as he was guilty of)… the person should be kept completely away from the non-offenders in society… We can’t afford the kind of compassion that would cause a repeat crime…

so you bleeding hearts out there… get real… think about your loved ones…

To be at 6’s and 7’s is an old expression. (Sorry to show my age :smiley: ) It’s used to indicate where there is confusion, and no clear way to resolve the situation. It’s British in origin, so may have been more common here in Canada (in the past, of course) than in the US.

Blessings, as I comb my grey hair,


blessings to you…

old is good…

i say this because… Who in his right mind would want to go back to the days of his adolescence???

not me… unless i could do so knowing what i know now…

now THAT would be very cool… :slight_smile:

its all valid jsut some laws were just set out for the people of ancient isreal

I’m not a priest (my wife wouldn’t like that ;)), just a student of Theology and Scripture. :slight_smile:

You mentioned you like the Old/New comparison with the Ark of the Covenant. You might like this article by Steve Ray: Mary: The Ark of the New Covenant.

I’m not sure if he mentions it in the article or not, but I’ve always thought that the comparison of Mary as the Ark of the New Covenant also bolsters the dogma of her perpetual virginity. No one was allowed to even touch the Ark (look at 2 Samuel 6:6-7 to see what happened to the guy who did!). So too was Mary “untouched”.

Good stuff!

frequently quote the O.T. passages that mesh with and strengthen your beliefs, and simply ignore the rest.

I assume you are joking (judging by your “non” religious status). The great thing about being Catholic is that we don’t ignore any part of Scripture, even the stuff that, at first glance, is difficult to understand. The Bible is a collection of books, but one Word of God. It all holds together perfectly. There is no need to ignore any part of it as it all strengthens our beliefs. :thumbsup:

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