17 New Testaments Books in 17 weeks

As Christians do we fall under the Law?

Upon my studies, this was a question asked: As Christians do we fall under the Law?

While researching I found a biblical answer in the book:

ONE YEAR DISCIPLESHIP COURSE, ISBN 978-1-58318-117-1.

THE LAW AND THE NEW TESTAMENT CHRISTIAN

MEMORY VERSES: Romans 3:19-24; 7:4; Galatians 3:10, 13, 24-26

There is a lot of confusion about the Law of Moses and what place it has in the Christian life, and it is essential for every believer to settle this issue on a solid Scriptural footing.

The following major New Testament passages clarify the matter:

Romans 3:19-24

1. The Law of Moses or the Old Covenant was given to show men that God is holy and that they are sinners (Romans 3:19). Men naturally think that they are righteous. They compare themselves to human standards of righteousness and one with another rather than with God’s perfect law. Men need to see that by God’s standards we are all sinners because we have broken His laws.

Take the Ten Commandments, for example (Exodus 20:1-17). Men have broken all of these. We have put other gods before the one true God (Ex. 20:3). We have made idols and worshipped them (Ex. 20:4-5). We worship and serve ourselves more than God, thus making our own selves into idols. We have taken the name of the Lord in vain (Ex. 20:7). We have broken the Sabbath and treated all days the same, neglecting to set apart even one day for the worship of God (Ex. 20:8). We have dishonored and disobeyed our parents (Ex. 20:12). We have killed (Ex. 20:13). We have committed adultery (Ex. 20:14). We have stolen (Ex. 20:15). We have lied (Ex. 20:16). We have coveted (Ex. 20:17).

The law of Moses requires perfect obedience (Deuteronomy 27:26). To break one law is to break all (James 2:10).

Jesus taught that God not only requires perfect external obedience to the Law, but internal obedience as well. To hate my brother is the same, in God’s eyes, as murder (Matthew 5:21-22). To lust after a woman is the same, in God’s eyes, as adultery (Matthew 5:27-28).

Thus it is obvious that we are all guilty of breaking the law and are sinners in God’s sight.

2. The Law of Moses cannot bring salvation (Romans 3:20).

The Old Testament cannot bring salvation because it requires perfect holiness, whereas man is a fallen sinner and cannot live up to its requirements. Thus, the Law of God can only curse us. The word “justified” means declared righteous by God. God cannot declare a sinner righteous on the basis of the Law of Moses, because it requires perfect obedience.

3. Salvation is through faith in Jesus Christ (Romans 3:21-24).

The way of salvation is not through the Law of Moses, but through Jesus. The Law demanded that the sinner die, and Jesus died in our place (Romans 6:23). The Law demanded that blood be shed, and Jesus shed His righteous blood in payment for our sins (Hebrews 9:22). Because of what Jesus did on the cross, the believing sinner can receive the very righteousness of God through faith (Rom. 3:21-22). The believer is justified freely. This means that salvation is a gift of God that was purchased by Christ. We are redeemed by His blood. The word “propitiation” means satisfaction of a debt, and that is what Jesus did for us. He paid a price He did not owe to satisfy a debt we could not pay.

Romans 7:1-4

1. The Law is not the Christian’s rule in life (Romans 7:1-2). Christ is our new husband and Lord, and He rules our lives through the New Covenant. Our rule in life is not the Law of Moses but Christ as revealed in the New Testament Scriptures. Trying to serve God under the old Law is like a woman who serves a husband only out of fear. She cooks and cleans house because she is afraid not to. Serving God under the new Law is like a woman who serves a husband out of love. She cooks and cleans house for her master, but not because she is afraid of what he will do to her, but simply because he loves her and treats her so well and she, in turn, loves him.

2. The Law of Moses cannot condemn the believer (Romans 7:3). The believer is as dead to the Law as a wife is to a deceased husband. The Lord Jesus Christ took our condemnation upon Himself on the cross, and we are safe in Him from all fear of eternal judgment.

3. The Christian has a new power, which is the indwelling Holy Spirit (Romans 7:6; 8:1). The believer serves Christ through the Spirit, not through his own strength. Compare Galatians 2:20.

2 Corinthians 3:5-18

This passage compares the Old Covenant with the New.

1. The Old Covenant was the Law of Moses (2 Corinthians 3:7, 13). It was “written and engraven in stones.” That specifically refers to the Ten Commandments (Deut. 4:13; 5:6-22).

2. The Old Covenant was a ministration of death (2 Corinthians 3:7) and a ministration of condemnation (2 Cor. 3:9). This is because it required perfect obedience from the heart, and we being sinners are incapable of providing this level of obedience.

3. The Old Covenant has been done away in Christ (2 Cor. 3:11). It is not the believer’s rule of life.

4. The believer has a new law (2 Corinthians 3:17-18). The fact that the believer is not under the Law of Moses does not mean that we don’t have a law. In fact, we have a higher law. It is the law of Christ. We are conformed to His image (Romans 8:29). As we see Him in the Scriptures, we are changed to His image.

Galatians 3:10-14, 24-26

1. The Law of Moses, or the Old Covenant, required perfect obedience in all things; men, therefore, cannot be saved by it (Galatians 3:10-12). Because it requires perfect holiness, it can only bring a curse upon a fallen sinner. We cannot live up to its holy requirements.

2. Christ took the punishment demanded by the Law (Galatians 5:13). He died in the sinner’s place in order to provide us with eternal salvation.

3. The Law of Moses is our schoolmaster to lead us to Christ (Galatians 5:24). This is the major purpose of the Law. It is designed by God to show the sinner his fallen and lost condition and to lead him to put his faith in Christ.

4. The believer is not under the Law of Moses (Galatians 5:25). The believer’s law is not the Law of Moses. The believer has a new law, which is the law of Christ. This means to be conformed to His image. The believer’s new law is also called the law of the Spirit (Galatians 5:16-18). By walking in the Spirit, which means obeying the Spirit and yielding to Him day by day, the believer does not fulfill the law of the flesh.

Colossians 2:13-17

1. Christ took away the Old Covenant, or the Law of Moses (Colossians 2:14). He did this by fulfilling its demands and paying the price that we owe for breaking it.

2. The believer does not follow the Old Covenant (Colossians 2:16-17). The Law contains types and shadows that point to Christ, but the believer has Christ Himself.

REVIEW QUESTIONS ON THE LAW OF MOSES

1. What are the five major New Testament passages that we examine in this lesson? (book and chapter only)
2. What is the purpose of the Law of Moses?
3. What verse says that to break one of God’s laws is to break all of them?
4. In what book and chapter does Jesus say that to hate is the same as murder and to lust is the same as adultery?
5. Why can’t men achieve salvation through the Law of Moses?
6. What verse says that without shedding of blood is no remission of sin?
7. When the Bible says the believer is justified “freely,” what does this mean?
8. What is the believer’s rule in life?
9. Why can’t the old Law condemn the believer?
10. What is the power by which the believer serves God?
11. What was the Old Covenant?
12. What does Paul refer to when he writes of that which “was written and engraven in stones”?
13. Why is the Law of Moses a ministration of condemnation and death?
14. What is the believer’s law?
15. What type of obedience does the old Law require?
16. The Law of Moses is our _______________ to lead us to Christ.
17. What is the major purpose of the Law of Moses?
18. What is the law of the Spirit?
19. How did Christ take away the Law of Moses?
20. The Law of Moses contains _______ and ___________ that point to Christ.

May we continue to search the word of the living God for answers. 

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19 thoughts on “17 New Testaments Books in 17 weeks

  1. i recommend you check out my recent post. The book you are reading has some serious misunderstandings of the Law of God. We should be aware that many church doctrines which flowed out of the Reformation were expressly designed to argue against the Catholic idea of performing sacraments, and do not properly represent how the apostles viewed the Law at all. The Law is not our enemy, but the very righteousness of God. Biblical faith cannot be divorced from obedience to Law. “Works of righteousness” are works which obey the Law, since the Law is the righteousness of God. What are we to do if we don’t strive to obey God’s statutes, disobey them? Heaven forbid, Paul says. That’s not the point of grace at all. The entire argument that grace is opposed to Law is unbiblical and a misreading of Paul. The great apostle was a strictly obedient Pharisee his entire life, even offering animal sacrifices some 30 years after the resurrection of Christ. The Law was never meant for salvation, this is true. It is meant for discipleship. We are not denying grace by embracing the statutes of God, we are exhibiting it. We have been given the Holy Spirit so that we may walk in obedience to God, not disobedience. The Law is not odious to those who seek to love and obey God. Nor did the Jews ever expect to obey it perfectly. Of course it can’t be obeyed perfectly. That’s not even the point. The bottom line is that grace and Law are not in any way opposite each other. They are, rather, married together and inseparable concepts. One who has grace will obey. One who refuses to obey does not have grace. Grace gives us the ability to repent and do better next time. Once you see it its simple.
    Anyway, you may disagree, which is fine. I don’t need you to agree with me for me to enjoy your posts! You are a believer like me, so it’s all cool. I would just ask that you be open to a different perspective, you may be pleasantly surprised by the simple logic of it all when you shine it in a different light.

    • I think we are on the same page: 4. The believer has a new law (2 Corinthians 3:17-18). The fact that the believer is not under the Law of Moses does not mean that we don’t have a law. In fact, we have a higher law. It is the law of Christ. We are conformed to His image (Romans 8:29). As we see Him in the Scriptures, we are changed to His image. I appreciate your comment. 🙂

      • did you read my blog post?

      • Yes, I did three times. When I read it, it appears you don’t believe in hell.

      • Ha! No, that’s not true. I nearly spit my tea across the room. LOL

      • Thanks for reading btw. I appreciate that.

      • I am still researching btw. What are your thoughts on Romans 10:4-13?

      • It’s part of a midrashic teaching by Paul which quotes major elements of the Torah to connect the faith of Israel with the faith of Gentile converts, with the goal of creating peace in community that was becoming fractured by divisions of practice and understanding. vs.4 should be translated “goal”, not “end”, it is an archery term, which means the correct translation, paraphrased, is this: “The Law is aiming at what Christ manifests”. One must understand that the Messiah, in Jewish theology, represents the “Inner” or “Supernal” Torah. The supernal torah does not replace the written Torah. Paul then quotes Deut.30 which says that men have no excuse to not obey God’s Law, since it is “near you”, and not something beyond our reach. The verse Paul quotes here literally suggests the opposite of what most Christian teachers suggest it means.
        Therefore, the whole “confess with your mouth” part of vs.9 must be understood in the same context that James is suggesting in James 2. True faith will be evidenced by works. That is how Paul starts Romans. Chapter 10-14 is the application of what Paul puts forth in chapters 1-3. vs.12-13 quote Isaiah and Joel, respectively, which means that the “no distinction between Jew and Greek” comment is properly interpreted to mean that both the Jews and Greeks in the assembly have put their faith in the same God for salvation, so “stop bickering”. (What they were bickering about is revealed later in the book). Joel and Isaiah are not talking about Jesus, but God the Father.
        To support what I’m saying, keep reading…Paul goes on to share (from Isaiah) that the chief purpose of the nation of Israel is to shine the light of God’s truth to the nations, which is the application of all the verses he quotes from vs.15-21 (in other words, he’s telling the Jewish elite in the congregation to stop treating the Gentile who have come into the synagogue with contempt) and then he finishes with a rebuke of the offenders by quoting Deut.30 again, once again holding the entire community accountable to the standards of the Law of Moses, which was the standard of Paul’s communities, not the “law of love”. Love must be defined. It is defined by the Torah. You must be careful not to make sweeping theological assumptions from Paul’s writings. Paul had great authority, but he did not have the authority to overrule the Torah of Moses, nor would he have tried to do so. He was a disciple of Jesus, and Jesus was his Lord and Master. Paul was not a renegade teaching things that no one had taught before. The difference with him was that he had to negotiate a difficult balancing act between Jewish converts who had been raised within a Jewish mindset that Gentiles were “unclean” and Gentile God-fearers who were interested in Judaism but were being told by Paul not to convert. These communities were mixed and there were lots of tensions which must be considered when you read these texts. One cannot divorce the scriptures from their religious and cultural context and expect to get an accurate view of what they mean.

      • hope I don’t come across as overbearing in any way. I’m just rather passionate about the subject. You’re a brave person to ask me my thoughts. 🙂

      • Thanks for taking the time to reply. As my blog title states Lean not unto my own understanding. I too am passionate about the subject. Thus I will always continue to ask. 😀

      • I’ve gathered that about you! that’s a wonderful trait to exhibit. I wish more people had that attitude. Questions are good. God wants us to ask questions, it’s how we grow. Dogma stifles that, generally, though not ALL dogma is bad.

  2. There are lots of other “proof texts” I could share which would further support my interpretation of the passage in question, but I don’t want to spend time creating a thesis. If you have interest when can dialog about it as we go along.

  3. I should add as a qualifier (since I threw the comments together somewhat hastily) that when I say that Paul held his communities under the standard of the Law of Moses, I mean that the Law is still binding on the community of faith. The Old and New Covenants are working simutaneously. God doesn’t cancel his covenants to institute new ones, He builds on the ones already given. The Law is part of the New Covenant, which is why Grace cannot be separated from obedience to God. They are two sides of the same coin. The distinction between Gentiles and Jews was Jewish cultural identity. Paul did not want either the Jewish believer or the Gentile believers to think that he supported the idea of anyone having some type of righteousness before God through Jewish status. He takes great pains in Romans to emphasize the importance of true faith, which is how he starts the letter…the whole “Jew inwardly/outwardly” passage is about that very subject.

  4. Ericajean says:

    As soon as I saw this post, I had to read it! I am glad you are posting up the studies of the New Testament. I have met people who follow the old laws and to be honest, they appear to be stressed or “dead” in Spirit. I, too almost agreed with what they said.

    Now, I do believe we have to be holy and set apart and that still requires us actively loving God, people, and obeying His Word. I just don’t feel right if I am bound by the old laws. I am still on a journey of learning though and I will be visiting this blog often. Thank you!

  5. Kristy Rhine says:

    Thanks for stopping by my blog! I am really looking forward to reading more of your encouraging words! 🙂

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