Mosaic Law & the New Covenant

I have some questions regarding the Old and New Covenant.

  1. I have a hard time trying to explain what parts of the Old Law are still valid today and what parts are not. It is said that the moral requirements are still to be followed in the New Covenant. But how do we know what parts are part of the moral Covenant?

  2. Marrying your sister was not a sin until the time of Moses (I think). So, does that mean it was never part of the Natural Law? Or if it is part of the Natural Law does that mean that Natural Law can change?

  3. According to Sungenis:

Now, let’s deal with the issue of Old Testament law. DiNovo is certainly correct in arguing that the Mosaic Law is obsolete. We are not under it any longer. In fact, anyone who puts themselves under the Mosaic Law will be condemned (Gal 3:10-12; 5:1-4). The New Testament makes a specific point of the Old Covenant’s obsolescence in several places (2 Cor 3:6-14; Hebrews 7:18; 8:7-13; 10:9). This would include the laws against homosexuality and the laws against eating shellfish. But what DiNovo doesn’t tell you is that, in the New Covenant (which replaced the Old Covenant), the Church re-established the moral code of the Mosaic Law, including the condemnation of homosexuality. Under the stipulations of the New Covenant, the Church has the right to re-establish any law from the Old Testament she desires to have (cf., Mt 16:18-19; Acts 15:1-12). That is why we see 9 of the 10 commandments re-established in Romans 13:9-10 (minus the law on Sabbath-keeping). That is why St. Paul can continue to denounce homosexuality in Romans 1:18-24 and 1 Cor 6:9 and 1 Tm 1:10, since he, as a New Testament apostle, has the authority to either keep or dispense with Old Testament moral and civil provisions. He does so in other ways in, for example, 1 Cor 9:9 when he uses the Old Testament law against muzzling the ox as a support for his wages as a minister.


Was Sungenis right in saying that EVERYTHING became obsolete and that certain morals were reestablished like homosexuality?

  • 17 As he was setting out on a journey, a man ran up, knelt down before him, and asked him, “Good teacher, what must I do to inherit eternal life?” 18 Jesus answered him, "Why do you call me good? 3 No one is good but God alone. 19 You know the commandments: 'You shall not kill; you shall not commit adultery; you shall not steal; you shall not bear false witness; you shall not defraud; honor your father and your mother.’"
    20 He replied and said to him, “Teacher, all of these I have observed from my youth.” 21 Jesus, looking at him, loved him and said to him, “You are lacking in one thing. Go, sell what you have, and give to (the) poor and you will have treasure in heaven; then come, follow me.” 22 At that statement his face fell, and he went away sad, for he had many possessions.- Mark Chapter 10

9 As the Father loves me, so I also love you. Remain in my love.
10 If you keep my commandments, you will remain in my love, just as **I have kept my Father’s commandments **and remain in his love. 11 "I have told you this so that my joy may be in you and your joy may be complete. 12 *This is my commandment: love one another as I love you. ** 13 5 No one has greater love than this, to lay down one’s life for one’s friends. 14 You are my friends if you do what I command you. 15 I no longer call you slaves, because a slave does not know what his master is doing-John Chapter 15

The ten commandments stayed and - Love your brother as yourself, and love one another as I love you were added

It doesn’t really matter whether the Old Law was completely abrogated or not, as a practical matter much of the moral lessons of the Old Law can be discerned in the Natural Law, which would apply to anyone, even a non-believer. Homosexual activity is one of the easier condemnations to derive from the Natural Law. The point is that in Judaism one was thought to be saved by keeping the Mosaic Law. Such a person was judged righteous, but when they died, they did not enter heaven, but ended up in “Abraham’s Bosom” ; a benign place or state like Limbo.

Jesus in his passion and death was and is the sole means of Salvation. Jesus descended into this place, hell if you will, to free those righteous souls into heaven. It was recognized that obeying the Old Law of itself could not save anyone.

The Ten Commandments are a good summary of the natural law and when fully explicated cover a multitude of behaviors. Jesus even summed it all up in his command: Love the Lord your God with your whole with your whole heart,your whole mind and your neighbor as yourself. We get at everything else by “unpacking” the Commandments.

The moral law is still valid, the rest is not. Christ told us to keep the Commandments, and summarized them by commanding us to love God, and love one another.

Since the moral law has been imprinted upon our hearts, there is no need for long lists of sacred laws. The Christian does not marry his sister because he knows that it is wrong to do so. The Christian does not engage in homosexual conduct because he knows that it is wrong to do so. The Christian does not procure abortion because he knows that it is wrong to do so.

Where our individual consciences may be weak, the living Tradition of the Church is there for us, as she is when we do what we ought not do.

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