chapter  3
6 Pages

The Old Testament Law in the New Testament

This chapter attempts the risky and controversial task of giving an historical sketch of how the churches of the New Testament era dealt with the matter of Christian observance of the Old Testament laws. It shows how Jesus is presented in the Gospels with regard to his attitude to the law, as opposed to what can be deduced from the Gospels about the position of the historical Jesus. According to Luz Matthew's community was a Jewish Christian one in Syria, whose retention of the law was based upon the authority of Jesus, who was also seen to have fulfilled it. Mark gives a negative picture of Jesus attitude to the law by emphasizing controversies with Jewish teachers concerning the Sabbath, and the matter of ritual purity. Luz thinks that the question of ritual purity was not one on which Jesus had pronounced, otherwise there would not have been so much disagreement about it in the early church.