Trim your Beard/Mustache, Jesus' Hair & God's Law or...
Trim your Beard/Mustache, Jesus' Hair & God's Law or... Ignoring the purpose of God’s instruction for the sake of man made doctrine.
So many believers today ignore or discount much of God’s word. Some were taught by well meaning people that had a biased view of God’s word, they simply did not know &/or they are teaching what they were taught and did not question it. No matter the reason if we don’t look at the purpose of God’s word, then we might think that some portions are applicable and others are not. This is not what God intended. When we make decisions like this we take over God’s authority on what is right & wrong. The scriptures show this is rebellion, which leads to sin, that ends in death.
So how do we keep from falling into this rebellion? Simple, we study & look at the purpose of God’s instructions. Lets look at an example…
Leviticus 19:27 ”You shall not shave around the sides of your head, nor shall you disfigure the edges of your beard.”
Many believers take this to mean if you follow God's law you cannot shave your sideburns; after all its Old Testament law stuff right? Everyone had wild and crazy hair back then. Now on the surface this might seem logical. Does God really care if I have a mustache or beard? Should we not trim them? Will this keep Him from blessing me if I do?
Of course not! However people will say "You trim your beard so your breaking God's law & thats proof we don't have to obey His commandments!"
So the logic goes and people render this word of God and many others void and not applicable today. Again a very logical conclusion, until you look at the background and purpose of this commandment.
Lets look at what the scripture actually means…
The word “shave” is the Hebrew word H5362 naqaph meaning to strike, strike off – specifically to strike off the skin. The ‘disfigure’ or ‘mar’ in some translations is the Hebrew word H7843 shachath meaning to destroy or act wickedly. We see that getting a normal haircut or beard trim is not what God is talking about here so what is this about?
You see the pagans who followed false gods used to grab and rip out their hair & beards in accordance with their ‘god’s’ ways. This was a physical action/sign that identified people to certain forms of false god worship, sacrifice &/or mourning the dead. So we see that getting a normal haircut or cutting our mustache or beard is not what Lev19:27 is addressing.
Unfortunately many will not test everything and often refuse saying “all Old Testament laws/commandments have been done away with; it was only for the Jews…”. Now that we know the real meaning of the verse, IF we engaged in such false god worship or mourning THEN it would be considered a sin today by ripping out our hair.
BTW if carefully look at God’s word we see God gave His commandments/instructions to both the Israelites and the foreign / gentile believers…
“One law shall be to him that is homeborn (Israelite) and to the stranger (gentile / foreign believer) that sojourns among you.” Exodus 12:49
and this one…
“One law and one custom shall be for you (the Israelite) and the stranger (gentile believer who followed God out of Egypt) who dwells with you” Numbers 15:16
These scriptures show the error of many believers who (falsely) claim the OT laws only applied to the Jews so we don't have to. If we look at the purpose of God’s law we see He does not want any to follow the ways of false gods or use their ways to worship & follow Him.
Therefore thou shalt keep the commandments of the Lord thy God, to walk in his ways, and to fear him.
In that I command thee this day to love the Lord thy God, to walk in hisways, and to keep his commandments and his statutes and his judgments, that thou mayest live and multiply: and theLord thy God shall bless thee in the land whither thou goest to possess it.
Another interesting note is that some believers will have pictures of Jesus with long flowing hair but is this scriptural? Most will say "Yes of course!" because they think with the earlier the time, the longer the hair people had.
Again lets look at the scriptures to find the truth…
1 Corinthians 11:14-15 “Does not even nature itself teach you that if a man has long hair, it is a dishonor to him? But if a woman has long hair, it is a glory to her; for her hair is given to her for a covering.”
So much for thinking all the people in the bible had crazy long hair.
This was from Paul, the apostle to the gentiles. So if you hear someone making claims that the Old Testament commandments, i.e. God’s instructions for life & blessing, don't apply today show them the scriptures and His truth. Blessings,