We have seen and learned about the unavoidable wrath that is to come for all man, and that no matter how much we might try to strive to reach God or to please Him, we cannot do so. We have learned that it isn’t what you know but who you know. We have learned that it isn’t about our performance rather our position, through Christ. Today, I’d like to explore Romans 7 as it teaches about law and grace. Bear with me a little as I stretch the picture of two men. Mr. Law and Mr. Grace.
Mr. Law is over-bearing, demanding, rigid and points out every fault and error. While he has very high standards himself, he continually reminds you of your inability to keep to his standards. He doesn’t help you in your efforts. He is correct though – for he is pure and holy – but his standards are unattainable. Not only all this but you cannot be released from this through death as he will never die- he is eternal. Would you feel like a captive? What, where, who and how is grace in all this?
Well, Mr. Law won’t die. He won’t pass away. How then, can you be released from the control of Mr. Law? The way out is death – but not the death of Mr. Law rather that of our own death! As we identify with Christ, through Him, we can die to the Law!
Likewise, my brothers, you also have died to the law through the body of Christ, so that you may belong to another, to him who has been raised from the dead, in order that we may bear fruit for God.
When we ask Jesus to save us, when we accept His suffering on the cross, when we believe in His shed blood, when we have been justified through faith, we are said to have ‘died with him‘ So, once and for all we have died to the law. We have been released from the Law’s control and authority.
Wow! So where does that leave us? Are we now wandering around doing whatever pleases us? Do we not submit to authority? Do we have no rules? Ah, we need to keep reading Romans.
But now we are released from the law, having died to that which held us captive, so that we serve in the new way of the Spirit and not in the old way of the written code.
Now we have died to the Law, we have joined with Christ. We can run into the eternal arms of the graceful, kind, powerful Lord Jesus. But wait, there’s more. 🙂 Jesus wants us to bear fruit. It now looks like this:
PERFORMANCE —-> LAW —-> STANDARDS —-> INSTRUCTIONS
JESUS —-> POSITION —-> GRACE and LIFE —-> FRUIT
Jesus gives LIFE! Grace gives life! The Law does not give us life. You don’t have to live under the authority of the law. Choose life! Choose grace! You can have victory in life by living in and of grace.
Some common objections are often voiced to this preaching of grace. Some may say that it sounds like I’m dissing the Law. Not at all! But we do need to understand why God gave the Law and what its purpose was. Scripture holds the truth.
The law doesn’t save. It doesn’t produce righteousness. It does not impart life. It does not sanctify. The law is not evil or wrong, it is indeed holy. So what is its purpose? The law shows us our failure, our inability to obey God’s law. But rejoice with me for as we see our sinfulness, the more we see God’s abounding grace!
What does it mean to you, to be ‘dead to sin and alive to God’?
I hope to journal my thoughts here, as I explore the purpose of the law. If you have enjoyed these few posts so far, feel free to pop in with a quick comment or subscribe to this blog.