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The answer starts before even the Ten Commandments were given to Moses. Romans 2:14-15 For when Gentiles, who do not have the law, by nature do what the law requires, they are a law to themselves, even though they do not have the law. They show that the work of the law is written on their hearts, while their conscience also bears witness, and their conflicting thoughts accuse or even excuse them. So we know, even apart from the Ten Commandments we all share a sense of right and wrong that God had built into our conscience. A sin is still a sin even before the Moses received the Ten Commandments. So what happened after Jesus died for us? Matthew 5:17-18 Do not think that I have come to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I have not come to abolish them but to fulfill them. For truly, I say to you, until heaven and earth pass away, not an iota, not a dot, will pass from the Law until all is accomplished. All the laws are still in effect. There is no abolishment. If you are not a Christian, the law condemns you today in God's eyes. This is why non-believers stand to be judged by the law. Because it has not been abolished. Now as Christians, Jesus stands in our place. We are justified by faith, through grace. Every sin has been blotted out - yesterday, today and tomorrow because Jesus fulfilled the penalty of death for our sins. For those who accept him, the law has been fulfilled. We stand righteous today by grace through faith in him, not through our works (observation of law). In Romans 4 the Apostle Paul wrote that Abraham, father of the Hebrews/Jews, stood righteous before God, not because of his works (the Ten Commandments as we know today didn't exist then) but because of his faith. Romans 4:1-5 What then shall we say that Abraham, our forefather according to the flesh, discovered in this matter? If, in fact, Abraham was justified by works, he had something to boast about - but not before God. What does Scripture say? "Abraham believed God, and it was credited to him as righteousness." Now to the one who works, wages are not credited as a gift but as an obligation. However, to the one who does not work but trusts God who justifies the ungodly, their faith is credited as righteousness. Does this mean now we can sin all we want? Of course not. Even before Moses received the Ten Commandments, even before Abraham's time, going back all the way to Genesis, when Cain killed Abel, a sin is still a sin. The law that is written in our hearts, our conscience bears witness. Romans 6:1-4 What shall we say then? Are we to continue in sin that grace may abound? By no means! How can we who died to sin still live in it? Do you not know that all of us who have been baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into his death? We were buried therefore with him by baptism into death, in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, we too might walk in newness of life. So while we no longer are bound to the law, we must continue to lead a righteous life. We do not continue to sin that grace may abound. We should not test God's kindness in the grace that He affords us.
Jesus said in Matthew 5:27 "You have heard that it was said to those of old, 'You shall not commit adultery'. But I say to you that whoever looks at a woman to lust for her has already committed adultery with her in his heart." What is Jesus doing? He's taking the seventh commandment and showing how people viewed them in the old testament. To commit adultery you had to physically be with the other person.Then Jesus expands that particular command in the new testament to include even our thoughts. Ephesians 3:2 talks about how we are living in the 'dispensation of grace'. It doesn't mean the law has been done away with as Jesus said in Matthew 5:17 " Do not think that I came to destroy the law or the prophets." Dispensation in the Greek means a 'new mode of dealing or arrangement'. Which is a higher standard to hate somebody or to kill somebody?. God has given us a higher standard because He Has given us the power to obey. Hebrews 4:16 says "Let us therefore come boldly to the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy and find GRACE TO HELP IN TIME OF NEED. Grace is not only favor but it is also power. If we are truly converted God gives us His grace so when we love Him we will truly keep His commandments.
Living under grace in the New Covenant has a whole new perspective as far as the Ten commandments are concerned. In the New covenant Jer 31:31-34 is operational. The Old Stony heart is removed and God writes His laws on our new regenerated heart of flesh. Heb 8:6 But now He has gotten a more excellent ministry, also by so much as He is a Mediator of a better covenant, which has been enacted on better promises. Heb 8:10 Because this is the covenant which I will covenant with the house of Israel after those days, says the Lord, giving My Laws into their mind, and I will write them on their hearts, and I will be their God, and they shall be My people." Heb 8:11 "And they shall no more teach each one their neighbor, and each one his brother, saying, Know the Lord; because all shall know Me, from the least of them to their great ones. The ten commandments now are operating in the regenerated hearts of those that walk in Newness of Spirit. Out of all the 10 commandments only One was a type reflecting a future truth. This is explained in Hebrews 4. The 4th commandment to keep Holy the Sabbath day, was a type of entering the rest of Faith. This rest we enter at the point of Salvation when our works are now God at work in us. Many contend that we who don't obey the Saturday Sabbath Law are not obeying the commandments so we are not true Christians and some even say we that worship on Sundays are bearing the mark of the beast. This concept is put to the sword when Paul was defending masters of servants who obviously were under attack about the Sabbath by the Judaizers. Paul told them basically, not to stress because God is able to make them stand though bewing judged. He then explained that the Sabbath day under the New Covenant was optional. Rom 14:5 One man esteemeth one day above another: another esteemeth every day alike. Let every man be fully persuaded in his own mind. Rom 14:6 He that regardeth the day, regardeth it unto the Lord; and he that regardeth not the day, to the Lord he doth not regard it.... Here is the apostle appointed to be the teacher of the Gentiles and the absence in His teaching of the Law of the Sabbath except this one thing speaks volumes to us. Here he says one person holds a special day, this is obviously the Sabbath, that was a personal choice. The other esteems every day alike, every day meaning 7 days which includes the Sabbath, that also was an accepted personal choice. So Paul now leaves the Choice of day totally to the individual Christian. The true meaning of the Sabbath is now a part of our reborn experience.
Before his conversion Paul had regarded himself as blameless "touching the righteousness which is in the law." Philippians 3:6. But since his change of heart he had gained a clear conception of the mission of the Saviour as the Redeemer of the entire race, Gentile as well as Jew, and had learned the difference between a living faith and a dead formalism. In the light of the gospel the ancient rites and ceremonies committed to Israel had gained a new and deeper significance. That which they shadowed forth had come to pass, and those who were living under the gospel dispensation had been freed from their observance. God's unchangeable law of Ten Commandments, however, Paul still kept in spirit as well as in letter. Satan could not hinder the plan of salvation. Jesus was crucified, and rose again the third day. But Satan told his angels that he would make the crucifixion and resurrection tell to his advantage. He was willing that those who professed faith in Jesus should believe that the laws regulating the Jewish sacrifices and offerings ceased at the death of Christ, if he could push them farther and make them believe that the law of ten commandments also died with Christ. I saw that many readily yielded to this device of Satan. All heaven was moved with indignation as they saw the holy law of God trampled underfoot. Jesus and all the heavenly host were acquainted with the nature of God's law; they knew that He would not change or abrogate it. The hopeless condition of man after the fall caused the deepest sorrow in heaven, and moved Jesus to offer to die for the transgressors of God's holy law. But if that law could be abrogated, man might have been saved without the death of Jesus. Consequently His death did not destroy the law of His Father, but magnified and honored it and enforced obedience to all its holy precepts. Had the church remained pure and steadfast, Satan could not have deceived them, and led them to trample on the law of God. In this bold plan, Satan strikes directly against the foundation of God's government in heaven and on earth. His rebellion caused him to be expelled from heaven. After he rebelled, in order to save himself he wished God to change His law, but was told before the whole heavenly host that God's law was unalterable. Satan knows that if he can cause others to violate God's law, he has gained them to his cause; for every transgressor of that law must die. Satan decided to go still farther. He told his angels that some would be so jealous of God's law that they could not be caught in this snare; the ten commandments were so plain that many would believe that they were still binding, and therefore he must seek to corrupt only one of the commandments. He then led on his representatives to attempt to change the fourth, or Sabbath, commandment, thus altering the only one of the ten which brings to view the true God, the Maker of the heavens and the earth. Satan presented before them the glorious resurrection of Jesus, and told them that by His rising on the first day of the week, He changed the Sabbath from the seventh to the first day of the week. When type met antitype in the death of Christ, the sacrificial offering ceased. The ceremonial law was done away. But by the crucifixion the law of Ten Commandments was established. The gospel has not abrogated the law, nor detracted one tittle from its claims. It still demands holiness in every part. It is the echo of God's own voice, giving to every soul the invitation, Come up higher. Be holy, holier still. The first four of the Ten Commandments outline our duty to our Maker. He who is false to his God cannot be true to his neighbor. He who loves God supremely will love his neighbor as himself. Pride lifts itself up unto vanity, leading the human agent to make a god of himself.
I am dead to the Law of Moses and It does not concern me as a Christian. The argument is between the Jews and the apostles at the transition from LAW to GRACE two thousand years ago. This has nothing to do with us gentile Christians. The law was not ours in the first place. We take our position from the book of Acts to Revelation as our guide. Every instruction we will do for we know it is for our growth in our Savior Jesus Christ. We will fight ourselves mad if we interfere with the politics of the Jews and their covenants. What we must remember is that the gospels are the end of the OLD COVENANT and the introduction of the NEW COVENANT which starts in the book of Acts. Jesus said to them in the Gospels Mat 28:18 And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth. Mat 28:19 Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: Mat 28:20 Teaching them to observe all things WHATSOEVER I HAVE COMMANDED YOU: and, lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world. Amen. The apostles wrote down the NEW “whatsoever i have commanded” and then said nobody is allowed to change it even those who wrote it “WE”. Gal 1:8-9 Gal 2:4 While we were in conference we were infiltrated by spies pretending to be Christians, who slipped in to find out just how free true Christians are. Their ulterior motive was to reduce us to their brand of servitude. Now you cannot be a Christian if you believe in observing the law of Moses because the moment you add something that was not written in the NEW you mess up the Christians life Gal 3:1 O foolish Galatians, who hath bewitched you, that ye should not obey the truth, before whose eyes Jesus Christ hath been evidently set forth, crucified among you? and that goes for Tithing, Sabbath and Circumcision. Circumcision was attempted and sharply rebuked. Circumcision stood a better change then Tithing and observing the Sabbath to be accepted in the NEW because Jesus was circumcised, but it was not written down so it is not accepted. So don’t add things that were not written down to be kept. The NEW has something said about the Sabbath live with that. Act 13:5 And when they were at Salamis, they preached the word of God in the SYNAGOGUES OF THE JEWS: and they had also John to their minister. Act 13:7 Which was with the deputy of the country, Sergius Paulus, a prudent man; WHO CALLED FOR BARNABAS AND SAUL, and desired to hear the word of God. Act 13:44 And the next sabbath day came almost the whole city together to hear the word of God. Act 16:13 And on the sabbath we went out of the city by a river side, where prayer was wont to be made; and we sat down, and spake unto the women which resorted thither. Where prayer - Where there was a place of prayer, or where prayer was commonly offered. The Greek will bear either, but the sense is the same. Places for prayer were erected by the Jews in the vicinity of cities and towns, and particularly where there were not Jewish families enough, or where they were forbidden by the magistrate to erect a synagogue. These proseuchoe, or places of prayer, were simple enclosures made of stones, in a grove or under a tree, where there would be a retired and convenient place for worship. Act 17:1 Now when they had passed through Amphipolis and Apollonia, they came to Thessalonica, where was A SYNAGOGUE OF THE JEWS: Act 17:2 And Paul, as his manner was, went IN UNTO THEM, and three sabbath days reasoned with them out of the scriptures, Act 18:4 And he reasoned in the synagogue every sabbath, and persuaded the Jews and the Greeks. Paul reasoned in the synagogue every Sabbath, and persuaded both Jews and Gentile proselytes that Jesus was indeed the Christ of God. Col 2:16 Therefore let no one sit in judgment on you in matters of food and drink, or with regard to a feast day or a New Moon or a Sabbath. Col 2:17 Such [things] are only the shadow of things that are to come, and they have only a symbolic value. But the reality (the substance, the solid fact of what is foreshadowed, the body of it) belongs to Christ. I died to the LAW Gal 2:19 (NLT) For when I tried to keep the law, it condemned me. So I died to the law—I stopped trying to meet all its requirements—so that I might live for God. (AMP) For I through the Law [under the operation of the curse of the Law] have [in Christ's death for me] myself died to the Law and all the Law's demands upon me, so that I may [henceforth] live to and for God. Gal 3:19 What then was the purpose of the Law? It was added [later on, after the promise, to disclose and expose to men their guilt] because of transgressions and [to make men more conscious of the sinfulness] of sin; and it was intended to be in effect until the Seed (the Descendant, the Heir) should come, to and concerning Whom the promise had been made. And it [the Law] was arranged and ordained and appointed through the instrumentality of angels [and was given] by the hand (in the person) of a go-between [Moses, an intermediary person between God and man]. Surely scriptures paradox in the letters has a meaning and should be interpreted without contradiction of the NEW COVENANT The Holy Spirit is now our guide into all truth. We cannot lie to the Holy Spirit
This morning I happened to read an article about law and grace. Is grace a license to sin? Does 'not under law' mean grace has replaced it? I was slightly confused. But God has revealed to me that we are no more under law and sin has no dominion over those who are in Christ, and we under grace. I firmly believe that we are under abundant grace and the gift of righteousness. This means under the mercy and favor with right relationship, right believing, right thinking, right living and right standing with God, we have life from law-oriented faith to gospel-oriented faith. Always remember that God is faithful to us.
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