The law: you know, the Ten Commandments and the seemingly endless list of dos and don’ts that people think appear throughout the Bible. What has God done with the law?
Handling of the law varies from church to church, and person to person. Some churches regulate nearly every aspect of someone’s life, while others seem to have an “if it feels good, do it” attitude.
Have you ever wondered what God did with the law?
Let us start with why God gave us all those dos and don’ts in the first place. Galatians 3:24, “Wherefore the law was our schoolmaster to bring us unto Christ, that we might be justified by faith.” The purpose of the law was to point us to Christ.
Romans 3:20 and Romans 7:7 explains that our knowledge of sin comes from the law.
We see a holy, sinless God in Jesus Christ, and we can see a sinful wretch within ourselves. This knowledge reveals a need for salvation from sin and through faith, the result of the law, justification by faith, can be achieved (again, Galatians 3:24, “Wherefore the law was our schoolmaster to bring us unto Christ, that we might be justified by faith.”).
If the law brings us to Christ, if we are justified by faith, do we need to keep the law after salvation to remain saved?
Here is where some churches disagree about the law. Some believe, “once saved, always saved” while others believe God will remove salvation if the Christian sins enough or commits specific heinous crimes against God.
I have asked ministers who believe a person can lose their salvation, “If Christ has saved me, and I tell a lie on my death bed, will I go to hell?”
None of them have told me, “Yes!” The answer is usually an explanation, without scripture, that one lie will not be enough to render my salvation null and void.
My next question is, “What if I commit murder?” This question is always answered in the affirmative. Murder would be enough for God to remove me from the fellowship of the saved to the rolls of the damned.
The conversation usually ends when I ask about Revelation 21:8 where, “... all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death,” and James 2:10, “For whosoever shall keep the whole law, and yet offend in one point, he is guilty of all.”
If one sin makes me guilty, then why does it take something awful after salvation to unsave me? Either everyone’s salvation only endures until the next time they sin, or it must last forever.
This thought brings me back to my original question – What has God done with the law?
God nailed the law to the cross, Colossians 2:14, “Blotting out the handwriting of ordinances that was against us, which was contrary to us, and took it out of the way, nailing it to his cross.”
On the cross, Christ, The Lamb of God, became a curse for us (Galatians 3:13).
All our sins were placed in Christ on the cross, “Who his own self bare our sins in his own body on the tree, that we, being dead to sins, should live unto righteousness: by whose stripes ye were healed.”
If the law brings us to Christ for our justification by faith, then it must be nailed to the cross, because that is where Jesus justifies us, Romans 3:26,28,31, “To declare, I say, at this time his righteousness: that he might be just, and the justifier of him which believeth in Jesus. ...Therefore we conclude that a man is justified by faith without the deeds of the law....Do we then make void the law through faith? God forbid: yea, we establish the law.”
Salvation by faith establishes the law because justification by faith is the intended result of the law.
God’s grace is not intended to be a guessing game. If I can lose my salvation, I have a life of fear and doubt ahead of me. What if I goof up? What if I tell a lie on my deathbed? What if I have a lustful thought seconds before a semi T-bones me? If I can lose my salvation, I can never know without a doubt I am saved, but the Bible tells us we can know, 1 John 5:13, “These things have I written unto you that believe on the name of the Son of God; that ye may know that ye have eternal life, and that ye may believe on the name of the Son of God.”
The law, nailed to the cross, brings us to justification is by faith.