What is the main difference between the Spirit and the Law? I have repeatedly given a simple example that helps to understand this difference. The difference between law and Spirit is like the difference between a sail and a wind. The sail wears out over time (or does not correspond to the change in the situation) and it needs to be constantly patched. But if you are the wind, then you can fly. You can fly with or without a sail. You just fly wherever you want and you have no obstacles. Everything that changes around you cannot stop or deceive you. This is spiritual freedom. And the sail is necessarily needed only by those who do not know how to fly.
This helps to understand the difference between the thinking of Christ and the thinking of the lawyers. The lawyers worshipped the letter (the sail), and Jesus worshipped God, who is the Spirit (John 4:21-24). That’s why Jesus was constantly destroying the dogmas of His opponents. All His activities were aimed at this.
What does it mean to think in dogmas? It means thinking according to the law, not according to the Spirit. In relation to the Scriptures, it means to see only the literal text, but not to see the global meanings. It also means the inability to distinguish evil human dogmas from real Christian teachings.
But God even here laughed at the fans of “exact wordings”. Why haven’t the original documents of the Christian Scriptures reached us? Why did God allow this? Couldn’t God have saved the original documents for us? He could. But he didn’t save it. The original letters disappeared just like the grave of Moses. Why? In order not to leave any chance to idolaters of the exact wordings. The main thing is the meaning of the documents, their Spirit, which remained even in distorted copies. Therefore, those who worship the letter have no support. They worship the wording and letters of copies of documents, but they can not even be sure of the correctness of them!
Let’s remember the idolaters of the Watchtower. They believe everything the media says about covid-19. But they don’t believe anything the media says about the lawsuits lost by Jehovah’s Witnesses and the problems in their congregations. Similarly, there are “Christian” idolaters of science. They believe in the correctness of “scientific dating of ancient Christian documents.” At the same time, they consider themselves “Christians” and therefore do not believe that man descended from a monkey. But it’s the same science that says it. Therefore, these dates have become another idol for some Christians. That’s why they reject “later copies” as “unreliable.”
As an example, let’s look at the “insertion” in Revelation 20:5a. Some say that this text is considered an insertion, because these words are written in the margins in one ancient document. And what does that mean? Nothing. Whoever made this “insertion” could have had an older document where these words were in this text. The context fully proves that the text of Revelation 20:5a is absolutely consistent with the content. And he does not support the doctrine that no one will be resurrected for 1000 years. You just need to carefully read the meaning of the “formulations” above and below.
Blind faith in the science and in the “scientific approach” leads to exactly such things. People believe in human authorities, which are rapidly falling one after another. And if you have not learned to think in the Spirit and understand the “language of meanings”, you are doomed to be deceived.
Similarly, idolaters of “formulations” believe only individual and literal texts of the Scriptures, but do not believe other texts that clearly echo them in meaning. As an example, they do not see obvious sense similarities between the texts of Luke 21:24 and Revelation 11:2,3. They don’t believe that the same Christ said the same thing. They believe in separate “accurately recorded phrases”, but not in a complete Christ. That is why they will never get a correct and complete understanding of the MEANINGS of biblical prophecies and other spiritual depths. Unfortunately, this is a statement of fact. The only trouble is that such idolatry can be recognized if you have learned to think like Christ, and not like the lawyers and Pharisees. They don’t see their idolatry.
Indeed, is it possible to convey the good news about the Kingdom to a deaf-blind person? If you think in terms of verbal formulations, this is impossible. You will never be able to convey the “wordings” to this person. He thinks in the language of meanings and images known only to him alone. But if you know and convey the right meanings, then it is possible, and you will find a common language. Meanings are the Spirit, and we are talking about worship in the Spirit.
Why is all this so important? And where is the boundary between the lie of idolatry and the purity of truth? There is only one correct answer. It takes place in your thinking. If you have not learned to think in the Spirit and language of senses, you will inevitably become an idolater, and it does not matter what your idol will be – science, “exact formulations”, “earlier copies” of Christian Scriptures and so on.