Law vs Grace: living with a view to securing the favor of God, and living in the favor of God already secured in Christ, are two widely different motives!
In my Sunday afternoon Bible class which takes place from 3PM to 4PM, we have been studying the 9 different baptisms which are mentioned in Scripture. (Notes will be available in near future) However, today an interesting point was brought up which had nothing to do with baptism but which I felt needed addressed. It was to do with Law and Grace and are Christians today under the Sabbath law. The point blank answer is NO. We as Christians living in the Church Age are not under any form of the Mosaic Law. The Mosaic Law was for Israel and Israel only and any form of trying to put Christians under any part of the Law is to do violation to the scripture. I am a “Pauline Dispensationalist”, which means I believe that the Apostle Paul was the man whom God chose to give the “Mystery Doctrine of the Church Age” to and it is him alone that we derive our rules for living the Christian way of life. Now to those of you reading this who absolutely disagree and argue that “All scripture is given by inspiration….” 2 Tim 3 v 16, I understand your view point and I agree, but we must do what Paul told Timothy in 2 Tim 2 v 15: Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth. The reason we have this problem today of people trying to make us obedient to the Mosaic Law namely the “Ten Commandments” is due to the fact that we do not “Rightly Divide the Scripture into its proper dispensations. Nine of the Ten Commandments are restated in the Pauline epistles, the only one not restated is the keeping of the Sabbath Day. We as Christians today keep nine of the ten commandments not because Moses gave us them but because Paul tells us. Now you may say that I am splitting hairs but not so, I am Rightly Dividing the Word. We have just recently done a study on the book of Galatians in our Monday night fellowship, (you can click on the link to the right and see the notes) and the theme of the whole book is that you cannot live under Law and Grace. It must be one or the other. The Galatians had been saved by grace and then the Judaisers came in and fooled them into thinking that they now had to keep the Law as well. They had turned away from grace. This is what is meant by the verse in Gal 5v4 “ye have fallen from grace”. It does not mean like some teach that they lost their salvation, but they had fallen from the principle of living under grace and had went back to the keeping of the Law. Paul tells us in Galatians that we are not under any part of the Law and that if we want to keep any part of it, we must keep it all. Please understand this! Paul tells us that if we want to keep any part of the Law, we are obliged to keep it all and not pick and choose what we want. For example, today we have people who teach us to keep all the Ten Commandments and also to Tithe, but they don’t want to do what Leviticus 24 v 16 says about what to do with the blasphemer or what Numbers 15 v 33 tells us to do with the man who gathered a few sticks up on the sabbath or what to do about the damsel in Deuteronomy 22 v21 who was not a virgin when she got married! STONED THEM to DEATH! Please understand what this means. If these people want to put you under one part of the Law, they should be keeping it all. I do not recall seeings too many public stonings recently, have you? And if we were to keep these commands I think public stoning would be occurring often!
So what have we said? We are not under the Mosaic Law. It does not apply to us today. We live under a system of Grace. Grace is defined as many things and a complex study is not in view at this time. However simply put, Grace is God’s provision. All that God is free to do for man without violating His Divine Essence. God has provided us as Christians with a way of life which is called in Gal 5 v 16, “Walk by means of the Spirit”, others have called it the “moment by moment walk by means of the Spirit.” We have been given the permanent indwelling of the Holy Spirit which was never given to any member of any dispensation before or any to come. We are unique because of that one fact alone. We are required to live by means of this power of the Holy Spirit, reckoning ourselves dead to the old man and alive to the new as Paul teaches in Romans 6, (known as “Operation K.R.Y.” notes are available by clicking on the link to the right). For a detailed study on this “moment by moment walk” I would like to direct you to two men who can teach you through their writings.
1: Miles Standford and his book, “Principles of Spiritual Growth” and
2:Dr Jim Brettell
I have links to left to both of these mens web sites and Dr Jim has available a complete audio study on Miles Standford’s book, “Principles of Spiritual Growth” and also two of Standford’s other books which are called “Pauline Dispensationalism” and “The Reckoning that Counts.” These three books of Standford’s and Dr Jim’s study of them in his Monday Night Bible Study, which he has available on MP3 format, have been an invaluable source of growth and change in my Christian life. My thanks to both of them and for God leading me to them. I hope and pray that if you are reading this and wish to grow in your Christian life you will take the journey and start now. Here are the links to download the MP3’s for the three books. If you click on the link to the left called Miles Standford you can download the books in written format and then follow along with the audio.
Ephesians 1 v 18: I pray that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened, so that you may know what is the hope of His calling, what are the riches of the glory of His inheritance in the saints, and what is the surpassing greatness of His power toward us who believe.