Tuesday, July 5, 2011

The Law, Grace, and Christ


        The Law

        Wait! The Law is not bad, the law is not wrong, and the law is holy, just, and righteous.  The law at the same time makes my skin crawl.  Judiciously, the law is perfect.  The written law is good about pointing out my no goodness.  The written law is a tutor, i.e., someone to guide me, stay in line, and point me to Christ.  The Law Moses received on Mt. Sinai was given on tablets of stone.  Tablets of stone or tablets of hearts is used in reference to man to describe the type of heart man obtains.  Such as, the different hearts are two:  One being a heart of stone and the other a heart of flesh.  These two pictures are given in means of describing the law.  If you have a heart of stone, then the law to you is lifeless.  If you have a heart of flesh, then the law to you is life.  If the law is not bad, and the law is not wrong, then why do we teach the law as bad and wrong?  I think it’s a matter of the spirit, by the spirit we have clarity in revelation and clarity in truth.  We subject ourselves to teaching of others and do not look into the heart to find the spirit's interpretation.
        Moving forward, the law is a loose Greek interpretation of the word "torah" in Hebrew, which means "teaching."  The Greeks give the interpretation of the word "nomas" which means "law" the word is legalized lawyer talk.  This was not God's intention for the "commands" or "mitzvoth."  Torah or teaching then is a way of living life and thus being called a heart of flesh and living.  The Law as we know it will never be understood unless you see its intent through the eyes of Grace and the life of Christ.

Grace

        Take a deep breath, this taste good!  Grace is God's undeserved favor a gift that you cannot earn, work, or achieve by action.  Soak this in for a moment; if you cannot earn something from God, then His gift to you is free.  What is so hard about grace?  Grace doesn't leave room for improvement, because you cannot improve on perfection.  Grace is perfect, it will leave no stone unturned in your life and it will never be taken from you once received.   Notice I wrote, received.  God's unconditional love is fueled by His unending vat of grace.  John Mark Macmillan's lyric in the song "He loves Us” sings "...if grace is an ocean, we're all sinking...”  The Law doesn't mix with grace, or does it? Or is the law grace?  The law was received by Moses from God on tablets of stone, yet Moses by grace saw God face to face and lived.  The spoken commands over the people of Israel from Sinai were not a set of rules and regulations for an enslaved people, but a way of life for a bride.  
        This marriage picture displayed at Sinai, takes an imperfect bride and gives them a means of living by which perfection is obtained through dependency.  We in our culture today love the stories of the damsel in distress that are rescued by their hero, and thus live their life in the safe arms of a husband.  This is not a new way of seeing our union with God; the Sinai picture is this rescuing of a people who were less than perfect and creates a perfect marriage.  This giving of a perfect union is a gift of God, thus making a perfect grace.  Grace open's the eyes of the blind and makes the poor rich; it feeds the hungry and gives drink to the parched.  Do you see the picture of grace in the law yet?  O.k. let's take it to the next step and wake up the senses about the law and grace by looking to Christ.



Christ

        Resting yet?  The Law is the heart of stone and Grace is the heart of flesh.  The fact that Christ is from divine seed shows us that He is born with a heart of flesh yet lived under this marriage covenant that we call the law.  Christ is the means by which we faulty, marred, and skewed humans have this resting place when it comes to living up to the standard of the law that seems impossible to live.  Christ, according to Paul in the scripture, fulfilled the law.  I don't know about you, but that is really good news, that really taste good, and that gives me a hope for the future.  The written law is a tutor that points us to Christ.  Christ is the new law, written on hearts of flesh which is given by a husband to a bride as a gift.  This gift is "life,” a life of knowing and a life of seeing, gazing, and believing.  Christ fulfills every detail of the written law and is our divine access to God.  This introduces us on a small level the depth that we will be diving into as we begin this study of James.

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