When God gave the laws to the Israelites, they were leaving Egypt. They were no longer under the laws of the Egyptians. So God gave them laws to help them see what a holy God they had, and through the laws he laid out the conditions by which he would live among them. God did not want his people to follow the practices of the nations around them, such as homosexuality, bestiality, and burning their children as offerings to false gods.
God desired that when Israel followed the laws, then surrounding nations would see how greatly their God blesses them, and people from those nations would come and desire to become Jews. This indicates that God did not expect other nations to take up his laws.
Since we are not in ancient Israel, but in a country that has laid down its own laws, we abide by our country’s laws. We don’t stone people for personal offenses; it is unlawful to do so. If anyone has broken the law, we tell the authorities.
The Old Testament is still valuable because in it we see God’s perspective regarding human relationships. We see that God abhors kidnapping, murder, homosexuality, adultery, theft, and other behaviors. He hasn’t changed His mind.
Paul in the New Testament warns against sexual sins in his epistles to the churches, so we know the homosexual and adultery prohibitions still stand. All laws dealing with how to treat one another with love and consideration still stand.
What Do You Think?
a. While you are still living in your own country, do you feel you must follow the laws of another country, even if their laws are not your own? Why or why not?