Just when you thought I was gone, here I am again back with another one!
It’s been a while, I know, since I lasted posted but I haven’t forgotten, and to those of you who’ve asked me when the next is post coming I dedicate this one to you. I couldn’t let the month pass without at least one post and this has been in the pipeline for a while.
Just a quick update on my reading plan, unfortunately it’s not good news, I’ve fallen off the wagon much like my blog posts but hopefully by next week (or the week after) I’ll be back on top of it.
Now I’ve got that house keeping out of the way “the law, faith & grace“…
So I was going through my bible and I came across Galatians 5. You may be familiar with this chapter as it contains the verse
9 A little leaven leaveneth the whole lump.
(Galatians 5:9 KJV)
However, I’m going to talk about a slightly different part of that chapter.
1Stand fast therefore in the liberty wherewith Christ hath made us free, and be not entangled again with the yoke of bondage. 2Behold, I Paul say unto you, that if ye be circumcised, Christ shall profit you nothing. 3For I testify again to every man that is circumcised, that he is a debtor to do the whole law. 4Christ is become of no effect unto you, whosoever of you are justified by the law; ye are fallen from grace. 5For we through the Spirit wait for the hope of righteousness by faith. 6For in Jesus Christ neither circumcision availeth any thing, nor uncircumcision; but faith which worketh by love(Galatians 5:1-6 KJV)
What my understanding of this passage is, Paul was trying to explain to the Galatians that if you follow the old covenant, you are bound to the old covenant and therefore you exclude yourself from the new covenant in Christ Jesus.
The law that I’m referring to here isn’t rules that are used to govern the country that you’re currently in, but The law of Moses. People often read and think that the law of Moses is just the 10 commandments, until recently I was also one of these people. However, the Law of Moses is a series of rules for civil and religious behaviour that is written across the books of Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers and Deuteronomy. The 10 commandments, sometimes referred to as the law of God, is separate from the law of Moses.
When Jesus came he gave us a new commandment to follow that, in my opinion, is a bit easier to follow than the law of Moses. Well, it’s achievable at least.
34 A new commandment I give unto you, That ye love one another; as I have loved you, that ye also love one another.
(John 13:34 KJV)
12 This is my commandment, That ye love one another, as I have loved you.
(John 15:12 KJV)
Under the law we would be justified by our works, which is our ability to fulfil all of the requirements of the law, with an emphasis on the ALL. Unfortunately, for us mere men this is an impossible task. However, through faith in Jesus and His death on the cross we are now justified by our faith.
10But those who depend on the law to make them right with God are under his curse, for the Scriptures say, “Cursed is everyone who does not observe and obey all the commands that are written in God’s Book of the Law.” (Deut 27:26.) 11So it is clear that no one can be made right with God by trying to keep the law. For the Scriptures say, “It is through faith that a righteous person has life.”
(Galatians 3:10-11 NLT)
So to paraphrase Romans 3:25-28 to explain my point. God gave us Jesus as the sacrifice for sin. People are made right with God when they believe that Jesus sacrificed his life, shedding his blood. God declares sinners to be right in his sight when they believe in Jesus. People can never boast and say that we have done anything to be accepted by God. This is because our acquittal is not based on obeying the law, but it is based on our faith. So we are made right with God through faith and not by obeying the law.
The concept of being subject to the law of works makes attaining right standing with God unachievable as it is not possible to do enough to be deserving of the love and favour of God. However, Grace is the unmerited love and favour of God to man and therefore costs us nothing but to believe.
23For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God; 24Being justified freely by his grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus:(Romans 3:23-24)
17For the law was given by Moses, but grace and truth came by Jesus Christ.
(John 1:17 KJV)
The Dake’s bible makes an interesting commentary about this verse. It says:
This does not mean that there was no law before Moses, or no grace and truth before Jesus Christ. The law itself is truth, and the New Testament is law. There are 1,050 commandments in the New Testament. The idea here is that the fullness of grace came by Jesus Christ. One can get today in fullness what men received only in part in Old testament times.
The Dake Annotated Reference Bible (2014)
I believe the main lesson to be learned here is that none of us are perfect. We are all sinners, whether we have committed sins we consider to be greater sins or lesser sins. The type of sin is irrelevant. However, we can all be saved by the grace and mercy of God through Jesus Christ. An important point to remember though is that grace isn’t a licence to sin, but by the grace of God we should become righteous.
Until the next time may the grace of our Lord Jesus be with you. Amen!