Churches today say they are keeping God’s commandments. But not following God’s will is not the correct commandment of God. How can we properly keep God’s commandments? Let us find out through the Bible.
God established God’s commandments
Looking at God’s commandments, that is, sacrifices in the Old Testament times, the priests did not offer sacrifices to God at their own discretion. God’s people offered sacrifices according to the methods and regulations God Himself established.
Leviticus 2:7-10 …Bring the grain offering… He shall take out the memorial portion from the grain offering and burn it on the altar as a food offering, an aroma pleasing to the Lord. The rest of the grain offering belongs to Aaron and his sons; it is a most holy part of the food offerings presented to the Lord.
Leviticus 9:17-18 He also brought the grain offering, took a handful of it and burned it on the altar in addition to the morning’s burnt offering. He slaughtered the ox and the ram as the fellowship offering for the people. His sons handed him the blood, and he splashed it against the sides of the altar.
Leviticus 7:11-14 “‘These are the regulations for the fellowship offering anyone may present to the Lord…Along with their fellowship offering of thanksgiving they are to present an offering with thick loaves of bread made with yeast. They are to bring one of each kind as an offering, a contribution to the Lord; it belongs to the priest who splashes the blood of the fellowship offering against the altar.
Studying the above contents, the Bible records in detail, the methods of each sacrifice, such as the grain offerings, burnt offerings, and fellowship offerings. It is not simply to let people know about the Old Testament sacrifice methods through these words.
Through these words, God’s people must realize they have to always keep God’s commandment, the manner and methods to worship God which God established.
Importance of God’s Commandments
God’s people must keep God’s commandments in accordance with God’s established regulations. However, the Bible records some people keeping God’s regulations at their own discretion and not according to the regulations God established.
1 Samuel 2:12-17 Eli’s sons were scoundrels; they had no regard for the LORD. Now it was the practice of the priests that, whenever any of the people …“No, hand it over now; if you don’t, I’ll take it by force.” This sin of the young men was very great in the LORD’s sight, for they were treating the LORD’s offering with contempt.
As God’s priests, Eli’s sons, like their father, Eli, offered sacrifices to God. However, they did not keep the commandments according to God’s regulations, and offered sacrifices at their own discretion.
For God’s people who did not adhere to God’s established regulations, even though they offered sacrifices to God, God judged them as degenerates whose sin against God was great, despised God’s sacrifice, and prophesied their lives would end
1 Samuel 2:22-35 … for it was the LORD’s will to put them to death… “‘And what happens to your two sons, Hophni and Phinehas, will be a sign to you—they will both die on the same day.
1 Samuel 4:1-11 “… The Ark of God was captured, and Eli’s two sons, Hophni and Phinehas, died.”
Even if a priest offered sacrifices to God but failed to follow God’s established regulations, their actions brought forth a terrible result. The priests were cursed by God and killed at the hands of the nations.
God’s Commandment, the New Covenant in the New Testament Times
These days, God’s people do not offer animal sacrifices like in the Old Testament. In the New Testament times, God’s people must offer sacrifices to God through worship. Then, what are God’s Commandments we must keep in the New Testament times?
Matthew 26:17-19 “… So the disciples did as Jesus had directed them and prepared the Passover.”
Luke 22:14-15 “… And he said to them, “I have eagerly desired to eat this Passover with you before I suffer.”
Luke 22:19-20 “…In the same way, after the supper he took the cup, saying, “This cup is the new covenant in my blood, which is poured out for you.”
In the Old Testament times, God established His commandments, the regulations of sacrifice, according to His (Jehovah) word. Similarly in the New Testament times, God established His commandments, the New Covenant regulations, according to Jesus’ words. Today, God’s people must worship God according to the New Covenant rules and regulations Jesus established.
Result of Disobedience to God’s Commandment
However, what happens if someone worships at their own discretion despite the fact they have been given God’s commandments? Just as God gave warning through Eli’s sons in the Old Testament, worshiping God at one’s discretion brings forth curses and plagues instead of blessings. God’s people must keep God’s commandments, the New Covenant laws and regulations, in the New Testament times.
Hebrews 10:28-29 Anyone who rejected the law of Moses died without mercy on the testimony of two or three witnesses. How much more severely do you think someone deserves to be punished who has trampled the Son of God underfoot, who has treated as an unholy thing the blood of the covenant that sanctified them, and who has insulted the Spirit of grace?
Furthermore in the Old Testament times, if anyone violated God’s commandment, offering sacrifices with the blood of animals, the price that had to be paid was death. Then, think about how much more severe the punishment will be, if anyone breaks the New Covenant commandments that God, who came in the flesh, established with His holy blood.
1 Thessalonians 1:7-8 “…He will punish those who do not know God and do not obey the gospel of our Lord Jesus.”
The Bible prophesied those who do not obey the gospel will be punished. Today, many churches keep worship in their own way, at their own discretion. However, are they the New Covenant commandments and regulations established by Jesus Himself 2000 years ago? If someone worships God diligently but does not do it according to God’s regulation, they will not receive salvation. We must find the place that keeps the New Covenant commandments before the day of punishment comes. Let us prepare for Heaven by keeping God’s commandments, the New Covenant festivals and regulations established by God.