"Love is from God" (1 John 4:7). Specifically, it can refer to that part of the OT written by Moses, the first five books, called the Torah. We may change our minds as we age, or our situation changes or we get more information. Romans 3 teaches us that law tells us our duty, that is, what we are obliged to do. But the law was only meant to last until the coming of Christ who is the fulfillment of God's promise. Is there a way to know which promises of God are for us today? What will love look like between those of us who disagree over the next three months, and where will it come from? 3 To answer the first question, let us focus on a few striking features of this temple vision. So how do we become loving people? It makes a legalistic Pharisee out of Moses, turns the Torah into the very heresy Paul condemned at Galatia, and (worst of all) it makes God into his own enemy, commanding that people try to merit his blessing (and thus exalt themselves) instead of resting in his all sufficient mercy (and thus exalt him). Their first king was Saul, and the second was David, who wrote many of the Psalms. Trust in me now, and look to no other source for help." We will see in a few moments how many in Israel twisted the Mosaic law into legalism. 1 Timothy 1:8-10 ESV / 70 helpful votes Helpful Not Helpful. In conclusion, then, the points are these: first, the law is fulfilled in us when we love our neighbor as ourselves. Your gift enables our worldwide outreach. Galatians 3:5 answers, "The one who supplies the Spirit to you and works miracles among you does so not by works of the law but by the hearing of faith." Therefore, when the ten commandments begin, "I am the Lord your God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of bondage. Thus, the law was only temporary, and pointed forward to the new covenant, when sin would be restrained, the penalty paid, the Spirit poured out, and the progress of evil reversed. The Lord your God who goes before you will himself fight for you, just as he did for you in Egypt before your eyes . And the third point was that, therefore, the law itself does not demand meritorious works, but only the obedience which comes from faith. 2:2 To be sure, genuine love will lead to great labor. The law was given 430 years after Abraham entered the Promised Land, and thus was added to the promise. . By Glenn Davis. What can we learn about God from the story we just read?” Possible Answers: God makes big promises. (Deuteronomy 26:12-15) God viewed withholding the tithe as stealing from him.—Malachi 3:8, 9. The Book of Exodus (the name means 'departure') tells us about these events. (Think how vivid the concentration camp would still be three months after the allied liberation!) If love is what the law aimed at, and only faith can love, then the law must teach faith. not of works lest anyone should boast" (Ephesians 2:8, 9). Love does not pout, is not self-pitying, does not use ultimatums to get its own way. They are above us and beyond us. Unlike us, God never changes in his person or his purposes. God forbid. For permissions, view our Copyright Policy. The answer is that love is not in the world. Every single commandment, says Romans 13:9, has love as its aim. The promises of God are for today – not yesterday. The second point was that love only comes out of faith in God's promises. Knowing the fall made us stubborn enough to believe we can get right with Him by doing enough good works to “outweigh” our bad ones, God gave the Mosaic law to Israel in order to refute this belief. The Law “was added because of transgressions” (Gal. . The difference, they say, is this: in the Abrahamic covenant and New Covenant salvation is promised freely to be received by faith apart from works of law. So we have three testimonies in the New Testament that what God is trying to do through the law is make loving people out of us. That is legalism. And so the time of controversy in which we find ourselves is not bad; it is a good occasion to test whether there is really grace within us or not. Paul says that the law was added “because of transgressions” (Galatians 3:19). The law which God gave to Moses at Mount Sinai a few months after bringing the people out of Egypt has been the victim of some very bad press in the past several hundred years. First came promise, then law. When He gives us a promise, we can be sure He will do what He has said. The crucial text here is Romans 13:8–10. But it can be shown from Paul's teaching and from the law itself. Only in Jesus Christ can these things be gained, “For Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to everyone who believes” (Romans 10:4 ESV). It means you are not burdened by it as a job description of how to earn the wages of salvation. Combined with this is the wonderful Personality behind it: We find that keeping His commandments—His law—teaches us God's greatest attribute. He is author of. The law is based on faith in God's promises, not on legalistic strivings. (Romans 7:12). (See Romans 3:31; Matthew 23:23. ." The law is a description of the obedience of faith; it is not a job description for how to earn the wages of God's blessings. When you claim the promises of God, it may have come from your past, but it is always for the future. Many of you might have one of your own. We can avoid frustration by understanding how Scripture teaches us to claim His promises. (Matthew 16:18), I will never leave you nor forsake you. The Holy Spirit tells us through the apostolic memoirs and writing. The letter kills; it is the Spirit that gives life (2 Corinthians 3:6). The proper function of the law is to put before us the right way of living before God. We are now sons of God, clothed in Christ, and empowered to live righteously (3:24–27). It does not seek to avoid a brother who differs, it does not wear a scowl, it does not spread rumors or speak evil of a neighbor, it does not close its ears to the evidences. The Law’s condemnation does not fall on us, because “the law of the Spirit of life set me free from the law of sin and death” (Romans 8:2). In Hebrews 6:13 it says, "For when God made a promise to Abraham, since he had no one greater by whom to swear, he swore by himself." Jesus Christ has made this possible through His sacrifice on the cross that is sufficient to pay for our sins once and for all (Hebrews 9:11-12). ), Now let's look at the law itself. It takes no Christian grace whatever to live in peace where everyone thinks and feels the same. The proper function of the law is to put before us the right way of living before God. Third, therefore the law did not call for meritorious works, but for the obedience which flows from faith. To prevent this from happening again, God instituted the law and its penalties as a way of holding back the progress of sin. You can't abuse others for self-gain by killing or lying or seducing another's spouse or dishonoring your parents, if you really believe the God of the exodus and the God of Easter is at work to give you the future that is best for you. It is deeper than labor and prior to labor and enables labor. It can refer to the whole Old Testament, as in Romans 3:19 (where the preceding quotations come from the psalms and prophets). It can be used to review one promise each day. Fifth, we should delight in God's law, meditate on it day and night, and sing of its value unto all generations. The law does two things: It shows negative things and positive things. That is, if you try to use the law as a job description of how to earn God's favor you are doing something that the law itself opposes. The second point was that love is the outworking of faith. The most important thing it does is to force us to recognize our need for righteousness, forgiveness, and salvation. God’s law is important to us today for several reasons. These promises are sealed by the highest authority, God's word. God is the Sovereign of the universe, existing supremely above all else. You don't steal if your future is secure in God. Jeremiah 29:11 by type shows us how God commits to his promise to save and the hope of the resurrection and entrance into the true Promised Land. Does the Law disagree with God's promises? So the first point in our theology of the law was that love fulfills the law. Send me a message and I will add it to the list. But under the Mosaic covenant salvation (or God's blessing) is not offered freely to faith, but instead is offered as a reward for the works of the law. This text has nothing in it that is immediately practical. Make good use of God’s law as you live your life coram Deo. Second, love is the out-working of authentic, saving faith. Most of us know the Ten Commandments, but what about the other laws? . But many Bible teachers say (or imply) that the law of Moses offers a way of salvation different than the way offered in the gospel. But sometimes he simply used the word "law," as when he said, "You are not under law but under grace" (Romans 6:14). 3:19) to imprison “everything under sin” (v. 22). That power will come into our life through Jesus Christ who calls us by his own glory and goodness. When we receive God’s forgiveness through our confession of faith in Jesus’ sacrificial death, the Law is fulfilled for us, and “there is no longer any sacrifice for sin” (Hebrews 10:18). “What I mean is this: The law, introduced 430 years later, does not set aside the covenant previously established by God and thus do away with the promise” (v. 17). Only in Jesus Christ can these things be gained, “For Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to everyone who believes” (Romans 10:4 ESV). At last the nation of Israel settled in the land of Canaan where Abraham had lived. When I still my heart with these things and catch a glimpse of God's bright and sovereign future, then I can love again. James said it a bit differently (2:8), "If you really fulfill the royal law according to scripture, "You shall love your neighbor as yourself," you do well." What is a promise? Therefore, the exodus was the foundation of Israel's faith. He tells us about God’s power that gives us everything we need for life and godliness. Paul’s sixth argument is that the law as a covenant was not designed to supplant grace but to show the need for grace (3:15–5:12). The Next 500 Years: 2017 National Conference, Show Me Your Glory: Understanding the Majestic Splendor of God, Naming Ligonier the Beneficiary of a Bank or Investment Account, Gifts That Provide Income and Tax Benefits. The promise first made to Abraham had come to pass, and the period of the law’s supervision, joyously, had come to an end. Love is patient and kind; love is not jealous or boastful; it is not arrogant or rude. That means thinking about the Bible deliberately and consciously, seeking God's wisdom. 3:19) to imprison “everything under sin” (v. 22). We know that in the Old Testament, God speaks to us in the Son. The law never commanded anyone to try to merit his salvation. Therefore, love is the fruit of the Spirit and the outworking of faith. A promise is a covenant or declaration that one will do exactly what they say or something will happen just as … So I invite you to read these words anew, words … Moses had said to them when they first approached the promised land, "Do not be in dread or afraid of them. And this faith is the basis of the law. Part of our confusion is caused by the simple fact that the word "law" in the New Testament has at least three different meanings when used in different contexts. The path on which the Spirit comes to us is faith in God's promises; and when he comes, the fruit he produces is love. But there is no Greek word for legalism, so when Paul wanted to refer to this distortion of the Mosaic law, he often used the phrase, "works of law" (e.g., Romans 3:20; Galatians 2:16, 3:2, 5). For if there had been a law given which could give life, verily justice should have been by the law. This week focuses on the rainbow and God’s promises. This is made clear in Deuteronomy 1:29–32 where Moses recounts why Israel refused to enter the promised land and was forced to wander 40 years in the desert. And in Scripture, God has made them known. Have something you would like covered? He is faithful even if we are not, but that doesn’t mean we should go on living however we please. . From Genesis to Revelation we read of normal people that received the promises of God. Youth Group Game and Lesson on Promises. For us it has been fulfilled by Jesus (Matthew 5v17). This will keep us from giving such bad press to the Mosaic law when really it is the legalistic distortion of law that should get the bad press. But it is not synonymous with labor. I don't feel angry or depressed or anxious. The final point, then, is that we should delight in God's law, meditate on it day and night (Psalm 119:97), and sing of his value to all generations (Psalm 19:7–14). Promises of God. The third point, therefore, is that the law did not call for meritorious works, but for the obedience which flows from faith. Today, God still wants to be close to us. system of rules that a particular country or community recognizes as regulating the actions of its members and may enforce by the imposition of penalties2 No, it doesn't! Yet some people become discouraged because they fail to see results after asking for His assurance. But vast portions of the OT describe dimensions of obedience which are true for God's people in any age. Before the Flood, sin progressed so far that God made the decision to destroy the world. But I also know there are some who are opposed to one, some opposed to two, and some opposed to all three of these proposals. The Old Testament Law is concerned with the life of the people of Israel, who were living at a particular stage of salvation history. My guess is that there is a good deal of confusion in our minds when we read on the one hand in Romans 6:14, "You are no longer under law but under grace," but on the other hand in Romans 3:31, "Do we then overthrow the law by faith? Sin is inherently destructive-both to the perpetrator and to those affected by the perpetrator. Psalms 40:8, “I delight to do thy will, O my God: yea, thy law is within my heart.” King David said he mediated in God's Word day and night (Psalm 1:2). Paul was not taking a big risk when he boiled the whole law down into one command. Paul makes it clear in the Bible that we can hold onto God’s promises to us because we are in the family of God. As Hebrews 10:23 tells us, “[God] who promised is faithful.” The Father always keeps His promises—the same today as He did in the days of the Bible. Today, Christ has sent the Holy Spirit so that the hearts of all His followers may be touched, allowing them to fully love others and love God, fulfilling the law that God put into place at the very beginning of the story. Since only perfect works could merit salvation from a perfectly holy God and nobody can achieve that, the law simply makes us aware of our sin and misery and pronounces our condemnation. The Mosaic Law did not state a penalty for failing to tithe. And so through him, the “Amen” is spoken by us to the glory of God.” 2 Corinthians 1:20 NIV. that everything written about me in the law of Moses, the prophets, and the psalms must be fulfilled." So the first point in our nutshell theology of the law is that the law is fulfilled in us when we love our neighbor. By no means! Thus Paul teaches that we should not leave the law behind, not reject the law for something else, but fulfill the law in the power of the Holy Spirit through faith which works itself out in love. And He comes into our hearts by the Holy Spirit and makes them His dwelling place (John 14:23,26), if we open the door to Him when He knocks (Revelation 3:20). . All these sins come from not believing God. In other words, it is something we cannot produce without God's enablement. The law was not designed to replace the promise. 3. Make good use of God’s law as you live your life coram Deo. Christian citizenship expands far beyond the country on our passport. Bible verses about Law. The Israelites were to declare before God that they had rendered the tithe and to request God’s blessing for having done so. What does this teach about God: Say, “This story tells us many things about Abraham, but God is the real hero of the Bible. Pursue the law for Christian growth, and in so doing, please God. The law was not an alternative way of salvation and was never given for that reason. Therefore, God sent Christ to atone for sin (Romans 8:3), that he might pour the Holy Spirit into our hearts, "in order that the just requirement of the law might be fulfilled in us who walk not according to the flesh but according to the Spirit" (Romans 8:4). The point is this: to whatever degree we achieve this divine love for each other, it will be owing to faith in the liberating promises of God. These promises are sealed by the highest authority, God's word. The law of Moses simply spells out the way Israelites will live if they genuinely feel their future is secure in God. All of our resources exist to guide you toward everlasting joy in Jesus Christ. Paul, in no uncertain terms, tells us what he thinks of the law. Love is the out-working of genuine, saving faith. The Bible is filled with the promises of God. That's why Paul can say in 1 Corinthians 13:3, "If I give away all I have and if I deliver my body to be burned, but have not love, I gain nothing.". There are three significant decisions we will probably make by the end of January: whether to buy the house next door for future expansion or parking, whether to amend the church covenant, and whether to call an assistant pastor for educational and young adult ministries and a children's worker in September 1982. It's a huge topic, but sometimes if we press things together into a nut-size outline, we can plant it in the corner of our mind until it grows into a big tree of insight. God never promises to keep us from the storms of life, nor to take us around them or to take us above them but He does promise to go with us through them. We’re on a mission to change that. Douay-Rheims Bible Was the law then against the promises of God? The law of God is often equated with Old Testament law. The second point was that love only comes out of faith in God's promises. That day, I just “happened” to have brought in my little promise Bible. Love is more than religious practices and humanitarian services. There are many people laboring for God and neighbor who are not doing it out of love. Its function is completed. Fourth, therefore we must obey the OT commandments the same way we obey the NT commandments—not in order to win God's favor, but because we already depend on his free grace and trust that his commands will lead to full and lasting joy. God is spirit (John 4:24 John 4:24 God is a Spirit: and they that worship him must worship him in spirit and in truth.American King James Version ×), existing in a different realm from that of humans, who are flesh.Our understanding and perception of God, therefore, are based on God's revelation to us through His … I am eager for all three of these things to happen. God does not make any promises that He does not intend to keep. The ten commandments are based on a call for faith in the God of the exodus, just like the moral teachings of the NT are based on a call for faith in the Lord of Good Friday and Easter. It can refer to part of the OT, as when Jesus says, "I have not come to abolish the law and the prophets" (Matthew 5:17). I think we can illustrate the way this works by our present situation here at Bethlehem. After all, the Israelites continued to be the children of Abraham and continued to keep the Abrahamic covenant by believing the promises. How might the vision’s setting on a high mountain have moved people to godly shame? THE PROMISE TO DAVID In the Psalms David says that God had made a special promise to him. If you live your life on the basis of spiritual pep pills that give an immediate emotional charge and specific practical guidan…