The spirit of the law

In my “Little Black Book” that I got for Lent this year, for March 8, it says:

“Jesus was not anti-Sabbath. What he opposed were regulations that were added to the Sabbath law, and which interfered with it’s purpose - namely, to provide a welcome break from work every seventh day.
Disputes arose over what constituted work. Could animals be feed on the Sabbath? Could people travel? Legal interpretations were handed down, and a complicated tangle of Sabbath laws developed. The liberating spirit of the law - which seemed so simple (take a day off) - gave way to a fear of breaking one of the detailed Sabbath rules.”

Question: Jesus gave Peter the power of binding and loosing. Is this the measure by which His Church is to retain the spirit of the law? For example, the changes in Vatican ll, I believe, were made, partly, to “retain the spirit of the law”.

If not, what measure did he give for “a complicated tangle of laws” not to interfere with the spirit of the law again.

Yes, somewhat. The Church can change some things, for instance, the Sunday obligation, fasting rules, etc. All these things are provided through canon law.

A simple but difficult answer: charity.

Jesus invented charity?

Jesus IS charity.

Yes one follows the Teaching and discipline of the Church.

(And remember love and truth are not opposed but go together)

Yes, charity is difficult to apply to my question. I really don’t understand how charity prevents His Church from making a “complicated tangle of laws” that interferes with the spirit of the law.

I also don’t understand how following the law, which I do my best, prevents His Church from making “a complicated tangle of laws” that interferes with the spirit of the law.

Because the Church is not about “a complicated tangle of laws” - the laws of the Church are not like that.

Let’s stay on topic. This is what you were asking:

Originally Posted by 1Lord1Faith View Post
If not, what measure did he give for “a complicated tangle of laws” not to interfere with the spirit of the law again.

And this is what I answered:


Charity is the measure Jesus uses to determine whether laws are serving the law of love.

For instance, forbidding the picking of grain on the sabbath does not serve love if people are starving.
For instance, taking your sacrifice to the altar when you have unsettled business with your neighbor does not justify you, Go love your neighbor first, then come back and make your observance.

Jesus elevates the law to the law of love.

Thank you for that explanation. So applying that principle today, it might look something like:

John Doe can’t go to Mass this week because he has to care for his child who is sick. He is not breaking Church law. This is possible because one of the popes, somewhere along the line, approved of people missing Mass for a good reason such as that.

And that is my point. The Jews got their law from God. God did not make a mistake in his law. At some point it was interfered with by men and turned into “a complicated tangle of laws”. We get our Church laws from men (albeit inspired by the holy Spirit). What measures did Jesus put into place to keep us from mucking it up like the Jews of his day did?

With all due respect, I don’t see how charity answers the question.

Jesus gave us the gift of his Holy Spirit, which - as you stated - inspires and guides the Church in defining her rules. The head of the Church, the pope, even has a special charism which prevents him from incorrectly defining the doctrines of the Church (referred to as infallibility).

The measure Jesus put in place to keep us from mucking it up is love. Love is the source and measure of law.
Charity answers the question because God is love.
The law serves love not the other way around.
God gives us the Ten Commandments because he loves us, and they are good for us. Church disciplines are not the same type of thing as the Ten Commandments. Possibly your are talking about things like annulment procedures and fasting etc…?
These things can be tangled and complicated for sure. Their difficulty is not the measure of their value. Right? The fact that something is difficult does not take away from it’s value.

The OT law (dietary, liturgical, etc…) is not something I am expert on, but we know that Jesus subjects all of that to love.
Love of God.
Love of neighbor.

Some would disagree with that but thats not the point.

I agree with you, what I’m asking is what has prevented that. Nothing prevented it in Jesus’ time. Charity existed is Jesus’ time.

That is the kind of stuff I am talking about. The point Jesus made was that the difficulty did in fact exceed the value and the spirit of the law was lost.

So, that’s the scripture that refers to the gates of hell not prevailing against the Church right?

No, the source is the Sacred Tradition of the Church, which not contradicted by the Sacred Text of the Bible. And often, the Scripture provides direct evidence of Sacred Tradition.

To me, this implies that the holy Spirit was not with the Jews in the Temple.

Why is this implied?

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