I’m doing a series this week on what I’d like to call “Bible dealbreakers,” reasons why I reject the Bible’s authority and therefore reject Christianity. Some will apply to Judaism as well, but Christianity is my focus here. I expect to get about five separate posts out of this, but we’ll see.
In the Old Testament, God promises repeatedly that the Mosaic laws will be in effect forever. That is God’s covenant with the Jews: follow these laws, and God will look out for you as his chosen people. (And God holds everyone accountable for these rules, not just the Jews.) Here are just a few of the very clear statements in the Torah that this is the way things will work for all time:
In the tent of meeting, outside the veil that is before the testimony, Aaron and his sons shall tend [an oil lamp] from evening to morning before the LORD. It shall be a statute forever to be observed throughout their generations by the people of Israel. Exodus 27:21
This day [Passover] shall be for you a memorial day, and you shall keep it as a feast to the LORD; throughout your generations, as a statute forever, you shall keep it as a feast. Exodus 12:14
Then you shall bring his sons and put coats on them, and you shall gird Aaron and his sons with sashes and bind caps on them. And the priesthood shall be theirs by a statute forever. Thus you shall ordain Aaron and his sons. Exodus 29:8-9
It shall be a statute forever throughout your generations, in all your dwelling places, that you eat neither fat nor blood. Leviticus 3:17
And it shall be a statute to you forever that in the seventh month, on the tenth day of the month [Yom Kippur], you shall afflict yourselves [or shall fast] and shall do no work, either the native or the stranger who sojourns among you. For on this day shall atonement be made for you to cleanse you. You shall be clean before the LORD from all your sins. Leviticus 16:29-30
But the Bible says that, once Jesus came on the scene, those laws weren’t so important anymore.
Brothers, my heart’s desire and prayer to God for them is that they may be saved. For I bear them witness that they have a zeal for God, but not according to knowledge. For, being ignorant of the righteousness of God, and seeking to establish their own, they did not submit to God’s righteousness. For Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to everyone who believes. Romans 10:1-4
Now it is evident that no one is justified before God by the law, for “The righteous shall live by faith.” But the law is not of faith, rather “The one who does them shall live by them.” Christ redeemed us from the curse of the law by becoming a curse for us—for it is written, “Cursed is everyone who is hanged on a tree”— so that in Christ Jesus the blessing of Abraham might come to the Gentiles, so that we might receive the promised Spirit through faith. Galatians 3:11-14
But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the law. Galatians 5:18
In fact, even though God’s covenant with the Jews was supposed to last for all time…
Remember his covenant forever, the word that he commanded, for a thousand generations, the covenant that he made with Abraham, his sworn promise to Isaac, which he confirmed as a statute to Jacob, as an everlasting covenant to Israel… 1 Chronicles 16:15-17
…with Jesus’ arrival, the claim goes, God is making a “new covenant” because the old one is “obsolete.”
But in fact the ministry Jesus has received is as superior to theirs as the covenant of which he is mediator is superior to the old one, since the new covenant is established on better promises. For if there had been nothing wrong with that first covenant, no place would have been sought for another. Hebrews 8:6-7
By calling this covenant “new,” he has made the first one obsolete; and what is obsolete and outdated will soon disappear. Hebrews 8:13
This is such a huge contradiction in what the Bible teaches that I cannot consider it to be a single description of the one true god — a god who is, by the way, supposed to be perfect, all-powerful, and all-knowing. So did he screw up the covenant for the first time around? Or did he not know that the covenant would become obsolete later? Or was Jesus a con artist? No matter how you slice it, something is very wrong here. Given that Christianity claims that the entire Bible forms one coherent whole, and it clearly isn’t, I can’t believe Christianity.