This is just a smigg longer than normal but I hope you will stick with me.
There has been a problem that has plagued the church in some circles – it is called “the love gospel”. It is only half the gospel story. This “gospel” takes the good news out of the context of the whole Bible message and pares it away from its reason for existence. It is said “we don’t preach the law but the love of God”. Preaching one or the other preaches half a gospel. Without the Bible’s gospel we have no hope beyond the grave.
This contaminated truncated idea of the gospel has the effect that Christians are becoming ignorant of the true nature of love. Love disciplines. Pro 3:12 for the LORD reproves him whom he loves, as a father the son in whom he delights. It is suggested that, to love, sinful ways must be accepted so the “sinner” can be accepted. The Christian therefore has become afraid of speaking in Biblical love that sin must be repented of.
The Bible says that sin is breaking God’s law. We know what it is to break a law. Have you driven through a stop sign? It is the same with God’s law. Have you lied? Have you lost your temper and said hurtful things? 1Jn_3:4 Everyone who makes a practice of sinning also practices lawlessness; sin is lawlessness. [Breaking God’s law]. The origin of this is found in the original sin in the garden of Eden where Adam deliberately disobeyed God. Man has done that ever since.
Paul declares that sin is disobeying God’s law. Some Christians suggest that sin is “stealing, murder, lying, adultery, homosexuality etc …” These and many more are the fruit of sin. There is not an “act” of sin that makes one sinner more guilty than another. Physical, mental and societal consequences of “sinful actions” may vary considerably but sin itself is breaking God’s law.
Yes, I am guilty. Yes, I have broken God’s law. I have not tortured and murdered anyone but I am just as guilty of breaking God’s law as one who has. This author deserves to be sent to hell just as much as the murderer. It is the disregard [an action of the heart] of God’s law that makes me a law breaker not the individual fruitful action. Consider the visible action of Adam – he ate a piece of fruit. His real problem was not in his appetite but in his heart, he knowingly and willfully disobeyed God. There are now several thousands of years of [greater or lesser] visible consequences of disobeying God’s law.
When God said if you eat the fruit of the forbidden tree you shall surely die, He meant it. Paul wrote of the reality of things where he said in Rom_6:23 “For the wages of sin is death”…., this is separation from God, and if he left it there we would have no hope. Thank God Paul then spoke of the reconciling message God gave him… “but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord”. In these words of Paul, do you see the connection between “law” and “grace”?
Law and grace are part of the same message. Grace makes sense only in the light of the law.
Gal 3:24-26 So then, the law was our guardian until Christ came, in order that we might be justified by faith. But now that faith has come, we are no longer under a guardian, for in Christ Jesus you are all sons of God, through faith.
The word translated here as guardian [or School Master], means a servant who takes a child to school and teaches him. This is what the law does, it takes us to school and teaches us that no matter how hard we try we cannot meet the standards of the perfect law of God, to love Him with our whole heart and our neighbour as ourselves.
If one stays outside of Christ Jesus he condemns himself, Joh 3:18 Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe is condemned already, because he has not believed in the name of the only Son of God.
The law points us to the one place we can find hope, God’s grace. Have you had an interview with the School Master yet? The law teaches that for you to have hope of eternal life in heaven, after death, you need to avail yourself of the remarkable grace of God.
Joh 1:12-13 But to all who did receive him [Jesus], who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God, who were born, not of blood nor of the will of the flesh nor of the will of man, but of God.
Always feel free to contact me if you want to talk.