Nepaug Bible Church - - Pastor's Prayer Meeting Lesson Notes -

Part VII: Applying The Truth That Believers Are Free From The Law
  1. Introduction
    1. Many questions exist about the believer's relationship to the Mosaic Law. (1) Those in Judaism teach the Law is necessary for salvation, Rom. 9:31-32. (2) Seventh-day Adventists claim we are today justified by grace through faith in Christ, but then must heed the Mosaic Law for Christian living (cf. Seventh-day Adventists Believe . . ., 1989 ed., p. 232-246). (3) Others hold the Mosaic Law establishes principles of human conduct (like circumcision et al. according to Bill Gothard) for Christians to receive blessing in living. (4) Still others think that as Romans 7:4 says the believer is made "dead" to the Law, Christians are not to keep the Law's ceremonial parts, but observe the Ten Commandments. (5) Some hold we are to keep nine of the Ten Commandments as we are not to keep the Sabbath acc. to Colossians 2:16, but the other nine commandments are repeated for us in the New Testament epistles. (6) Then, citing Malachi 3:10, some claim we must give ten per cent of our money to God as was required under the Mosaic Law.
    2. One of the positional truths of every believer is his freedom from the Mosaic Law, and we view that truth with application to these issues (cf. L. S. Chafer's work, Syst. Theol., vol. III "Soteriology," p. 240-241):
  2. Applying The Truth That Believers Are Free From The Law.
    1. When Christ died on the cross, He substitutionally died for the believer to the law's jurisdiction, and thus to its condemnation of him, Romans 7:2-6.
    2. The parts of the Mosaic Law to which Christ died include not only the ceremonial parts of the Law but also the Ten Commandments and every other (conceivable) part of the Mosaic Law, Colossians 2:14-17:
      1. Paul taught that Christ's substitutionary death for the believer on the cross ended the Law's jurisdiction over the believer so that he is not to let anyone judge him regarding ceremonial aspects of the Law, including dietary restrictions or the keeping of various holy days, Colossians 2:14-16b.
      2. Also, Paul listed Sabbaths as those days that believers were to let no man judge them, and the keeping of the Sabbath Day is one of the Ten Commandments, cf. Colossians 2:16c with Exodus 20:9-11.
      3. Thus, the believer is free from all the parts of the Mosaic Law, including circumcision, et al., Gal. 5:1ff
      4. [Indeed, if a Christian tries to keep any part of the Law, he obligates himself to keep the whole Law, be it the Ten Commandments or its ceremonial parts, cf. Galatians 3:10; Deuteronomy 27:26.]
    3. Though nine of the Ten Commandments are taught as right deeds for Christians to practice, the Christian would practice them not to obtain merit or because he must heed the Law's jurisdiction, but because these practices fit a life of righteousness by the Spirit's power in the current Church dispensation, Rom. 8:3-4.
    4. Re: tithing, in the Church era, believers are to give the amount of freewill offerings they themselves decide, 2 Corinthians 9:6-7. Thus, tithing as was prescribed under the Mosaic Law (and was practiced by Abraham before the Law, cf. Genesis 14:20) is not required for the Christian today!
Lesson: In Christ, the believer is so POSITIONED as to be dead to the Mosaic Law's jurisdiction and to its condemnation that he is NOT bound to keep ANY PART of that Law; rather, he is to live RIGHTEOUSLY in the CURRENT Church dispensation in ways that MAY OFTEN OVERLAP the DEEDS of the Mosaic Law, but ONLY as a RESULT of the indwelling HOLY SPIRIT'S leading.

Application: (1) One is NOT justified by keeping the Mosaic Law as Judaism implies: he is justified by faith apart from the works of the law, cf. Rom. 3:20-24. (2) One is NOT saved by grace only to live under the Law's jurisdiction as Seventh-day Adventism holds; rather, he is DEAD to its jurisdiction. (3) When one trusts in Christ, he dead to ALL of the Mosaic Law, be it the ceremonial or the Ten Commandments (4) or circumcision et al. (Gal. 5:1-3); he is not obligated to heed ANY PART of the Law. (5) When it comes to the nine of the Ten Commandments that are repeated in the New Testament epistles, or to the tithing issue, etc. NONE of these regulations of the Mosaic Law can RULE the CHRISTIAN: today's believer lives by the Holy Spirit's power in a RIGHTEOUS life as directed by Church era New Testament writings regardless what Law requires. (6) Thus, believers are free to give what they will to God, whether they match or exceed or give less than the Old Testament tithe!