20050621

Keeping the Law

Acts 15:10
Now therefore why tempt ye God, to put a yoke upon the neck of the disciples, which neither our fathers nor we were able to bear?
Something is going on today that reminds me of what happened in Acts 15, and it's explained very well in Galatians and Hebrews. Search the scriptures diligently to see whether the things you are being taught are true, and cease to hear the instruction that causes you to err from the way you should go. Weren't the Apostles honest, trustworthy, good, biblical, godly people? Yet the Bereans were commended for searching the scriptures before believing even the Apostle's teaching. Could it somehow hurt to take a peek for yourself just in case? I'll tell you some of my experiences:
  1. I'm a Gentile, who never received the old law from the Lord, like Israel did. The Lord never even chose us Gentiles to keep that law!
  2. Never add to the gospel. The law is a good thing, but it isn't part of the Gospel, which I've heard and believed from the beginning. The gospel should never be changed in any way for any reason. Preaching the 10 commandments is not a necessary part of preaching the gospel.
  3. God did not show us the way He wants us to live by sending the law. The Lord never asked us to please Him by keeping the law, or by any other effort of outward behavior. The intention of the law was never so that we could please the Lord by keeping it. The Lord showed us the way He wants us to live, by sending His Only Begotten Son Jesus Christ to do good, heal, and die on the cross to pay death, for the wages of our sins. Jesus is the Principle.
  4. God is dreadfully high and mighty, having all power over all things, and having made everything by Himself. There is nothing good that I can do to give anything to Him. None of our efforts are sufficient to please the Lord at all.
  5. The problem with trying to please the Lord by keeping the rules, is that we can't keep the rules. I've tried not to sin, but I've found out that I can't keep myself from sinning. Nobody I know really can. Israel couldn't. The Apostles couldn't. Only Jesus did, and He worked on the Sabbath, dealt with Samaritans, drank wine, ate with sinners, and his disciples didn't even wash their hands. The sooner you realize this, the better: We can't keep the rules.
My point this. The Old Law of Moses, including the 10 commandments, the ordinances, and the pattern of the temple, is for a specific purpose today. The law is to kill sinners who don't believe in Jesus. It shows us that we fall short of the glory of God. It warns us of the destruction we will suffer without a sacrifice. It points to the perfect High Priest, that Spotless Lamb of God, Jesus Christ.
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