The Greek word ANOMIA is a relatively rare, special word used in only 13 verses in the Bible, and it is often loosely translated as lawlessness, the very deadly sin warned about in Matthew 7:23: “…… I never knew you, depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness” and in terrifying Matthew 13:41,42 where condemned, ANOMOS Christians will be crying and gnashing their teeth as they are mercilessly thrown into what may be a nuclear type of fire. ANOMIA, of course, is publicized little by mainstream Christianity in its determination to evade obeying as many laws as possible that are still in force. ANOMIA is precisely defined as follows:
ANOMIA, the feminine noun, Strong’s number 458, is defined by THAYER’S GREEK-ENGLISH LEXICON of the NEW TESTAMENT, March, 2005 seventh printing, acclaimed by many as the world’s best such lexicon, on page 48: “1. prop. the condition of one without law, — either because ignorant of it or because violating it. 2. contempt and violation of law, iniquity, wickedness ……..” To find out if ANOMIA really does refer to the Mosaic laws we need to know the word that ANOMIA is derived from and its meaning. ANOMIA IS DIRECTLY DERIVED FROM ANOMOS, Strong’s number 459, which is also the ADJECTIVE form of ANOMIA, AND ANOMOS REFERS PRIMARILY to the Old Testament, Mosaic laws. YES, BELIEVE IT OR NOT, ANOMIA REALLY DOES REFER MOSTLY TO THE OLD TESTAMENT LAWS! ANOMOS on page 48 IS DEFINED AS “1. DESTITUTE OF (THE MOSAIC) LAW ……..” Thayer, not me, put in parentheses “THE MOSAIC.” ANOMOS itself is derived directly from the Greek word NOMOS, Strong’s number 3551, translated into the English “law,” and NOMOS appears in the New Testament well over 200 times, defined ALMOST WITHOUT EXCEPTION AS THE MOSAIC LAW. NOMOS on page 427 is DEFINED AS “…….. a command, law; and 1. of any law whatsoever …….. 2. OF THE MOSAIC LAW …….” THE ADVERB form of ANOMIA is ANOMOS, Strong’s number 460, spelled like the adjective but pronounced differently, and it again REFERS PRIMARILY to the Mosaic laws! ANOMOS on page 48 is ALSO DEFINED AS “without the law …….., without a knowledge of the law …….. TO SIN IN IGNORANCE OF THE MOSAIC LAW ……..” THE HEBREW-GREEK KEY WORD STUDY BIBLE King James Version, 1991 revised edition, on page 1740 in the “Lexical Aids to the New Testament,” as well as other study aids, defines NOMOS basically as THE LAW GIVEN MOST FREQUENTLY BY MOSES. ANOMIA literally means “no torah.” “A” means “no” or “without” and NOMIA, derived from NOMOS means “law,” or primarily the laws within the first five books of the Old Testament: Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, and Deuteronomy. The definition of ANOMIA also contains the idea of thinking about or of regarding established Old Testament laws WITH CONTEMPT as a sin in itself.
Did you see that ANOMIA (lawlessness) is derived from ANOMOS, defined as “DESTITUTE OF THE MOSAIC LAW …… TO SIN IN IGNORANCE OF THE MOSAIC LAW“? DESTITUTE OF THE MOSAIC LAW, TO SIN IN IGNORANCE OF THE MOSAIC LAW!!!! Have you really and fully comprehended the profound significance of that simple, short definition??
ANOMIE is an actual English word derived directly from the Greek word ANOMIA. Dictionaries basically define anomie, which gives us a better understanding of the meaning of ANOMIA, as a COLLAPSE OF THE SOCIAL STRUCTURES REGULATING OR GOVERNING A SOCIETY OR SOCIAL INSTABILITY THAT RESULTED FROM A BREAKDOWN OF STANDARDS AND VALUES. Mainstream Christianity has obviously experienced a collapse of Mosaic law observance for the last 1,600+ years.
The Apostles definitely did single out the sacrifice, circumcision, Levitical priesthood. and automatic death penalty laws as now abolished, but they NEVER DID single out remaining Old Testament laws like the dietary, festival, tithing, and Saturday rest laws as annulled. So those and some other Mosaic laws are still quite valid for modern day Christians. Ebola outbreaks in Africa, for example, might never occur again if those people there would simply stop eating monkeys and other “unclean” “bush meat,” which are thought to be vectors of that dreaded virus.
Matthew 13:41,42: “THE SON OF HUMANITY APOSTOLIZES HIS ANGELS, AND FROM HIS SOVEREIGNDOM THEY GATHER ALL WHO S-C-A-N-D-A-L-I-Z-E AND WHO V-I-O-L-A-T-E THE TORAH 42 AND CAST THEM INTO A FURNACE OF FIRE; AND THERE BECOMES WAILING AND GNASHING OF TEETH.” (ExeGeses Companion Bible) This particular translation is one of the more literal translations. “ExeGeses” means a critical explanation or a critical analysis. Note the word “scandalize” in the above translation. Merely speaking contemptuously of established, sacred Old Testament laws, as well as breaking them, may also condemn you to death by incineration. In accordance with the full definition of ANOMIA, few people realize that just saying bad things about the holy Mosaic laws, especially those that still remain in force, is an extremely serious sin in itself.
Matthew 7:23, which is addressed to Christians: “…….. I NEVER KNEW YOU, DEPART FROM ME, YOU WHO PRACTICE LAWLESSNESS!” The original Greek word for “practice” is ERGAZOMAI, Strong’s number 2038. The definition of ERGAZOMAI seems to imply that ANOMIA is not a sin that occurs by accident, or occurs unintentionally as through extreme temptation. Strong’s, Thayer’s, and the definitions of other experts indicate that ANOMIA is deliberate, sustained, and occurs regularly, and the English translation “practice” implies that ANOMIA does not occur rarely. These definitions are consistent with the idea that OT law observance has been deliberately abandoned.
MATTHEW 7:21-23: “Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ shall enter the Kingdom of Heaven ……. 22 MANY (POLUS) will say to Me in that day (Judgment Day which will occur after the Christian millennium), ‘Lord, Lord (desperately crying out fearing they may be rejected), have we not prophesied (preached) in your name, cast out demons in your name, and done many wonders in Your name?’ 23 And then I will declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness (ANOMIA)!” Most Christians refuse to believe, in the assumption that the majority must be right, the real definition of ANOMIA translated loosely by often anti-OT leaning translators into the more deceptively general, less specific “lawlessness” or “iniquity.” The Greek word for MANY in the above verse 22 is POLUS which when used elsewhere in the Bible OFTEN MEANS NOT JUST THE MAJORITY, BUT OMINOUSLY THE VAST MAJORITY.
MATTHEW 23:27: “Woe to you ….. For you are ….. full of ….. ALL UNCLEANNESS.” The Greek for “UNCLEANNESS” is AKATHARSIA, Strong’s 167, which is derived from the same Greek word AKATHARTOS, Strong’s 169, used in Acts 10:14 to describe the type of uncleanness of the forbidden foods listed in the MOSAIC LAWS.
MATTHEW 23:28: ” ….. you also outwardly appear righteous to men, but inside you are full of ….. LAWLESSNESS.” The Greek for “LAWLESSNESS” is ANOMIA, meaning “destitute of the MOSAIC LAW.”
Matthew 7:23 ignoring churches also, of course, conveniently omit the last, DISOBEDIENCE part of JOHN 3:36:
“Whoever believes in the Son has eternal life; whoever DISOBEYS the Son will never have life,” (Today’s English Version)
“…….. those who do not OBEY the Son will never have life ……..” (New Century Version) Some English translations that include even the King James Version, dilute “disobeys” down to “does not believe,” “believeth not,” or similar words. The original Greek, though, specifically uses the word APEITHEO, 544, for “disobeys” which basically means to refuse belief AND OBEDIENCE!
2 Peter 3:17: “Dear friends …… So be on your guard. Then you won’t be led down the wrong path by the mistakes of people who don’t obey the law. You won’t fall from your safe position.” (New International Reader’s Version)
2 Thessalonians 1:7-9: “…… the Lord Jesus …… 8 In flaming fire taking vengeance on them that …… OBEY NOT THE GOSPEL of our Lord Jesus Christ. 9 Who shall be punished with EVERLASTING DESTRUCTION ……” (King James Version)
JUDE 1:4: “…… some people …… are SHAMELESS SCOUNDRELS. Their design is to replace the sheer GRACE of our God with sheer LICENSE ……” (The Message)
JUDE 1:4: “…… (impious, profane) persons …… pervert the grace …… of our God into LAWLESSNESS ……” (The Amplified Bible)
Some safe haven, Mosaic law keeping Christian churches include the Church of God, a Worldwide Association, the United Church of God, an International Association, and the Living Church of God which all have major websites. These churches have letter answering departments which can answer email or postal questions you may have about which Mosaic laws are still in force. COGWA ministers are finding it increasingly challenging to promptly respond to a growing number of questions from the public about their church doctrines, which is the church I attend on Saturday afternoons. These and similar like minded church members take advantage of and reap the benefits of good Biblical laws promoting more HEALTHY LIVES (through avoiding Levitically unclean, toxic scavenger meats), more FINANCIAL SECURITY (through magical tithing), more PLEASURE (through tasty festival and feast meals), and more FREE TIME (through Sabbath and festival observance). Yielding to protective, holy Old Testament laws , church members eat only “clean,” safe meats, relax regularly from Friday sunset to Saturday sunset avoiding all sinful, customary or burdensome work, and they avoid deception and paganism drenched, man concocted Christmas and Easter observance. No matter what is going on in the rest of the world, they also literally “eat, drink, and be merry” for a full 7 days at a church designated festival site during the carefree Feast of Tabernacles occurring in the cooler September or October of each year. In accordance with OT laws designed for our pleasure, they eat the best, tastiest foods they like that they sometimes cannot comfortably afford to buy regularly during the rest of the year. Drinking in moderation beverages containing alcohol is permitted by the Bible. They generally are all prosperous. According to my personal experience with them it seems that those who do not tithe or do not tithe correctly, however, are the ones that consistently are not as prosperous. Most importantly, these law keeping Christians can sleep well at night knowing that they will not be condemned for the underrighteousness (anomia) that will ultimately convict mainstream, anomos Christians. Some Christians believe, perhaps correctly and of course hopefully, though, that the vast majority of mainstream Christians will be quickly persuaded to become more righteous law keepers after the coming 1,000 year reign of Jesus on the earth, and be saved. Those anomos mainstreamers will miss out on the first resurrection and the Christian millennium, however, and will appear in the following, relatively brief, much larger second resurrection.
Scripture quotations taken from the Amplified® Bible,
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Scripture taken from The Message. Copyright © 1993, 1994, 1995, 1996, 2000, 2001, 2002. Used by permission of NavPress Publishing Group.
Scripture taken from the New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved. Unless indicated otherwise, all quotations are from the New King James Version.