The Ceremonial Law and the Physical Laws
The physical laws must be differentiated from the ceremonial law for though the former were included in the practice of the typical services, “cleanliness” and all that it comprehends physically and spiritually, is “next to godliness” and is based on the truth that the human body was created to be the temple of the living God, the dwelling place of the Holy Spirit. Thus the physical and natural laws are as old as creation itself, which was but six thousand years ago, according to the divine reckoning and inspired pen.
For instance, many teach that God’s specifications on what foods are clean or unclean belong to the ceremonial law that was “done away with at the cross.” Nothing is farther from the truth for even nature testifies that the beasts, fowls, sea animals, and insects that are classified as unclean are the carnivores, scavengers, or bottom-feeders, etc. But even if one can advance all the reasons such as they are now “farm-raised and fed nothing but healthy and organic feed,” etc., none of these excuses nullify God’s Word and wisdom that defines such as unclean. For one to continue doing so after being enlightened, is rebellion “and stubbornness which is as idolatry.” Thus the physical and Biblical health laws are but part of the natural law which are part of the principles of God’s moral law which govern the whole person—mind, soul, and body.
There was one law, not several, that regulated both the system of sacrifices and the priesthood. See Leviticus 6: 9, 14, 25; 7:1, 11, 37. The ceremonial law, governing the earthly sanctuary services, priesthood, the system of sacrifices, and the feasts which included the seven annual ceremonial sabbaths, Passover, etc., and physical circumcision, designed by God and spoken to Moses on the mount during the 40 days he was up on Mount Sinai. Moses wrote them down with his own finger. This is what the Bible calls “the law of Moses.” These were binding during the Mosaic or Jewish economy until such time that these “shadowy services,” also called “the handwriting of the ordinances” pointing to coming of Christ as the Messiah and the lamb of God, died on the cross. Then type met antitype; shadow met substance. Thus, to continue keeping any of these ceremonial laws, after Christ’s death is to openly reject Christ as Messiah and Savior, “the lamb of God that takes away the sins of the world.”
The main features of the ceremonial law, as verbally dictated by God and hand-written by Moses are as follows: spoken by Moses to the people, Lev. 1: 1-3; written by Moses, Deut. 31:9; placed in a book; not written on tables of stone, Deut. 31: 24; added because of sin, Gal. 3:19; temporary, Heb. 7:12; called carnal or fleshly ordinances, Heb. 7:12; only a figure of the true, Heb. 9:9; shadow of the heavenly, Heb. 8:5; 10:1; was of the blood of bulls and goats, Heb. 10: 5, 6; ; were binding “until the Seed should come,” Gal. 3:19; made nothing perfect, Heb. 7:19; abolished by Christ Himself when He died on the cross, Eph. 2:15; after the cross, it became a yoke of bondage, Gal. 5:1; after the cross, called “contrary and not good,” Col. 2:14; after the cross, it had become a burden, Acts 15:10; not used for judgment, Col. 2: 16, 17.
The Physical and Natural Laws
“In order to enjoy good health, we must ask the Lord to bless us, and then we are to do what we can to place ourselves under conditions the most favorable to health.” – My Life Today, p. 128.
But much more than just affording protection from diseases and premature death, by prevention, God’s physical laws and natural laws Him being nature’s God, are just as binding and eternal as His moral law is since the there is only One lawgiver. Therefore, to transgress one is to transgress the other. James 4: 12; 2:10. There cannot be one law fully being fulfilled or transgressed, without the other being done as well. Intelligent and willing obedience to these laws is necessary in order that that which the Creator ordained in the beginning the Redeemer restores in the end. We “are fearfully and wonderfully made” (Ps. 139: 14) for a specific purpose.
“Since the laws of nature are the laws of God, it is plainly our duty to give these laws careful study. We should study their requirements in regard to our own bodies, and conform to them. Ignorance of these things is sin.” – My Life Today, p. 125
Ignorance or lack of knowledge, worse if willful, of what the Creator designed the human body to be–“the dwelling place of God, the temple of the Holy Spirit,” —has led fallen man since the beginning to either ignore, abuse, neglect, or worship the body as an idol. Paul warns: “What, know you not that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, which you have of God, and that you are not your own? For you are bought with a price. Therefore glorify God in your body and in your spirit which are God’s. If any man defiles the temple of God, him shall God destroy, for the temple of God is holy, which temple you are.” 1 Cor. 6: 19, 20; 3: 17.”
“Man was the crowning act of the creation of God, made in the image of God, and designed to be a counterpart of God. . . . Man came from the hand of God perfect in every faculty of mind and body; in perfect soundness, therefore in perfect health.”- Good Health, March 1883.
Therefore, by creation and redemption God lays claims upon the human body (CH 40) for the body is the medium through which mind and soul are developed (MH 130; CD 33; MLT 78; PK 488; Te 61, 102). Neglect of the body is neglect of the mind. (CH 122). .
After the first Adam sinned by transgressing the moral law by yielding to the temptation to transgress a physical law—to eat of that which was forbidden by God—both simultaneous acts of disobedience, he became sinful, subject to all the consequences of sin— suffering, decay, and death. Christ, the second Adam, the sinless One, redeemed Adam from the curse of the law by repurchasing the human body and mind with His own blood, His own life, at Calvary, by this supreme act and sacrifice certifying that the laws transgressed by man, were eternal and immutable.
- With all the accumulated transgression of both the moral and physical laws before and since after the Flood, why has mankind not yet rendered itself extinct? Was God’s warning to Adam “Thou shalt surely die” real? Here is the answer that alone should immediately make us better appreciate and depend on God’s wisdom and power, and be grateful for His love, longsuffering, and mercy towards man before he became a sinner:
“God endowed man with so great a vital force that he has withstood the accumulation of disease brought upon the race in consequence of perverted habits, and has continued for six thousand years. . . . If Adam, at his creation, had not been endowed with twenty times as much vital force as men now have, the race with their present habits of living in violation of natural [or physical] law, would have become extinct.” – Testimonies, vol. 3, pp 138-9.
What was the Real Purpose of the Sanctuary?
From continually studying it from its multiple aspects, I am now fully convinced that the sanctuary doctrine is the only one that fully explains the glorious, comprehensive plan of redemption/salvation as taught in the everlasting gospel. Consider the following: And God said, “And let the make Me a sanctuary, that I may dwell among them.’ Exo. 25:8. “I will dwell among the children of Israel, and will be their God,’ ‘and the tabernacle shall be sanctified by My glory.” Exo. 29: 45, 43. Now this:
“In the building of the sanctuary as a dwelling place for God, Moses was directed to make all things ‘according to the pattern of things in the heavens.’ God called him into the mount, and revealed to him the heavenly things, and in their similitude the tabernacle, with all that pertained to it, was fashioned. So to Israel, whom He desired to make His dwelling place [corporately], He revealed His glorious ideal of character. The pattern was shown them in the mount when the law was given in Sinai. . . .
But this ideal they were, in themselves, powerless to attain. The revelation at Sinai could only impress them with their own need and helplessness. Another lesson, the tabernacle, through its service of sacrifice, was to teach—the lesson of pardon of sin, and power through the Savior, for obedience unto life.
Through Christ was to be fulfilled the purpose of which the tabernacle was a symbol—that glorious building, its walls of glistening gold reflecting in rainbow hues the curtains inwrought with cherubim, the fragrance of ever-burning incense pervading all, the priests robed in spotless white, and in the deep mystery of the inner place [the most holy apartment], above the mercy seat, between the figures of the bowed, worshipping angels, the glory of the Holiest. In all, God desired His people to read His purpose for the human soul [the whole person]. It was the same purpose long afterward set forth by the apostle Paul, speaking by the Holy Spirit: [1 Cor. 3: 16, 17 quoted].” – Education, pp. 35, 36.
Over 150 years ago, the spirit of prophecy given through the inspired pen of E. G. White was already enlightening the members of the remnant church on this present sealing truth that was being progressively revealed to her. She wrote them in plain and simple language that everyone, young children, if they have been so encouraged by their parents by precept and example from childhood, can read and understand. Let’s take a quick survey of a few of these and see if we are truly living in harmony with the physical and natural laws as the professed keepers of the moral law rendering us part of the remnant church of prophecy, not merely because of membership. First, we must clearly understand these basic truths:
“God is as truly the Author of physical law as He is author of the moral law. His law is written in with His own finger upon every nerve, muscle, and faculty which has been entrusted to men.” Counsels on Diet and Foods, p. 17.
“The living organism is God’s property. It belongs to Him by creation and redemption; and by misuse of any of our powers we rob God of the honor due Him.”- Counsels on Diet and Foods, p. 17.
“The health reform is an important part of the third angel’s message; and as a people professing this reform, we should not retrograde, but make continual advancement. It is a great thing to ensure health by placing ourselves in right relation to the laws of life.” MLT 128.
“The Creator of man has arranged the living machinery of our bodies. Every function is wonderfully and wisely made. And God has pledged Himself to keep this human machinery healthful action if the human agent will obey His laws and cooperate with God. Every law governing the human machinery is to be considered just as truly divine in origin, in character, and in importance as the Word of God. Every careless, inattentive action, any abuse put upon the Lord’s wonderful mechanism, by disregarding His specified laws in the human habitation, is a violation of God’s law. We may behold and admire the work of God in the natural world, but the human habitation is the most wonderful.”- Medical Ministry, p. 221.
Physiology, according to Webster, is “the study of the functions of the organs and parts during life, as distinct from anatomy; the organic processes and phenomena, collectively, of an organism or part.”- “This living machinery [the body] is to be understood. Every part of its wonderful mechanism is to be carefully studied.” MS 49, 1897. “The mechanism of the human body cannot be fully understood; it presents mysteries that baffle the most intelligent. It is not as the result of a mechanism, which, once set in motion, continues its work, and the pulse beats, and breath follows breath. . . The beating heart, the throbbing pulse, every nerve and muscle in the living organism, is kept in order and activity by the power of God.”- Ministry of Healing, p. 417.
The study of physiology is one of the very first and yet most neglected of duties of Christian parents for their children. Most of the time, it is the parents themselves who are guilty. But God in these closing hours of probation is calling for a radical reform. For countless parents the opportunity to do so is past. Many went to their graves unsanctified in this area. This solemn work and responsibility is a distinct part of the sealing message and work God is seeking to accomplish among His people before He places His final stamp of approval upon those found worthy of the reward of eternal life.
(to be continued)