Grace & Peace


Sunday, April 28, 2019

Excuse Me? Christian, What Are You Thinking?

The standard of the law is perfection (by your own merit or human effort) if you want to try and keep it apart from faith in Christ. Just look at the Ten Commandments and realize the only man or person who ever walked the earth and kept them all is Jesus. Jesus is fully man and fully God. So, all humanity would need a Savior. That's why in Galatians, it states, "But when the fullness of the time was come, God sent forth His Son, made of a woman, made under the law. To redeem them that were under the law, that we might receive the adoption as sons. And because ye are sons, God hath sent forth the Spirit of His Son into your hearts, crying, Abba, Father." (Gal. 4:4-6 KJV)

You might be saying, that's all fine, but I'm not an Old Testament Hebrew or Israelite, born under the law. Well, think about this, you have standards you live by and place on others and others place on you, that if not met, judgment comes. That's all a law system can do is judge and condemn. Now we do need societal laws and order (structure) in our households, etc. or society wouldn't function properly. But make no mistake about it, the world operates in large part under a law system which is conditional-opposite of the unconditional love of God.

Scripture tells us that through the law we become conscious of sin (see Rom. 3:20). The word "con-science" means: con [with]-science [knowledge], so people living under the law are knowledgeable about their sin. It could be said they're sin-conscious and along with that comes the fear of punishment. (See Hebrews 2:15, Rom. 4:15) This mentality affected the Hebrew people and it affects people today, if they allow themselves to be put under the law.

The Apostle Paul writes in his epistle to the Romans, "For when the Gentiles, which have not the law, do by nature the things contained in the law, these, having not the law, are a law unto themselves: Which shew the work of the law written in their hearts, their conscience also bearing witness, and their thoughts the meanwhile accusing or else excusing one another; In the day when God shall judge the secrets of men by Jesus Christ according to my gospel. (Rom. 2:14-16 KJV)

When the Apostle John said in his epistle, "there is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love," (1 John 4:18 NIV)  The fear that he is referring to is the penalty of wrath one fears from being under the law, but now (as born-again believers) we have been released from the law. (See Rom. 4:14-15, 7:4-6)  The devil has been stripped of his power. His power has been broken because he used the law to condemn us. He took advantage, and still tries to use the opportunity afforded him by the weakness of our flesh, to accuse us every time we fail, but we have been released from the law and the condemnation we suffered while under the law, for scripture refers to the Old Covenant law as the ministration [or ministry] of death, written and engraven on stones. Further on, it is referred to as the ministration of condemnation. (ref. 2 Cor. 3:6-12)

Scripture tells us satan is referred to as the 'accuser of the brethren'. (ref. Rev. 12:10) The Apostle Paul writes in his letter to Colosse how satan was disarmed by the work of the cross "Blotting out the handwriting of ordinances that was against us, which was contrary to us, and took it out of the way, nailing it to His cross; And having spoiled principalities and powers, He made a shew of them openly, triumphing over them in it." (Col. 2:14-15 KJV) This work of Jesus on the cross is where He fulfilled the law as God and Man and through faith in His finished work it is fulfilled in us as well. (ref. Rom.8:4 and 10:4)

The law does serve a purpose, and that is to reveal mankind's guilt and depravity and point them to the Savior as the Apostle Paul writes in his epistle to the Galatians "But the scripture hath concluded all under sin, that the promise by faith of Jesus Christ might be given to them that believe. But before faith came, we were kept under the law, shut up unto the faith which should afterwards be revealed. Wherefore the law was our schoolmaster to bring us unto Christ, that we might be justified by faith. But after that faith is come, we are no longer under a schoolmaster." (ref.Gal.3:22-25)

Through faith in Jesus Christ we are found worthy and not guilty. There is no condemnation for the believer; this is not so for those who are not born again. (ref. Rom.8:1, 2:1-5; John 3:16-18, John 5:24)

Once again as stated in Paul's epistle to the Romans, "Which shew the work of the law written in their hearts, their conscience also bearing witness, and their thoughts the meanwhile accusing or else excusing one another;) In the day when God shall judge the secrets of men by Jesus Christ according to my gospel." (Rom.2:15-16 KJV)

In John's gospel Jesus states "Do not think that I will accuse you to the Father: there is one that accuseth you, even Moses in whom ye trust." (John 5;45 KJV) Jesus represents and is grace and truth, but Moses represents the law.

Once again, Jesus says don't even think it!  (ref. John 5:45)

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Thanks, David