Not only am I under the law, but I want to be under the law.
This is to explain what I said, so that you might know what I mean. Sometimes what I mean is confused by what another knows. That is not to say that another does not understand; only that we are looking at Scripture from a different angle.
This is how I view God’s law “I am still under the law”. That is not to say that I am under the penalty of the second death, for violating the law. However, not only am I under the law, but I want to be under the law!
All of the law is built on the two main, or most important, commandments. We are told this in Matthew.
(Mat 22:36-40 NIV) “Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the Law?” Jesus replied: “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.”
This is also said in Mark 12:28-34.
(Mark 12:28-31 NIV) “One of the teachers of the law came and heard them debating. Noticing that Jesus had given them a good answer, he asked him, “Of all the commandments, which is the most important?” “The most important one,” answered Jesus, “is this: ‘Hear, O Israel, the Lord our God, the Lord is one. Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength. ‘The second is this: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no commandment greater than these.”
And also said in Luke 10:25-28.
(Luke 10:25-28 NIV) “On one occasion an expert in the law stood up to test Jesus. “Teacher,” he asked, “what must I do to inherit eternal life?” “What is written in the Law?” he replied. “How do you read it?” He answered: “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind’ ; and, ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.'” “You have answered correctly,” Jesus replied. “Do this and you will live.”
Think about these two commandments and combine them with Mathew 5:17-20.
(Mat 5:17 – 19 NIV) “Do not think that I have come to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I have not come to abolish them but to fulfill them. I tell you the truth, until heaven and earth disappear, not the smallest letter, not the least stroke of a pen, will by any means disappear from the Law until everything is accomplished. Anyone who breaks one of the least of these commandments and teaches others to do the same will be called least in the kingdom of heaven, but whoever practices and teaches these commands will be called great in the kingdom of heaven.”
While you are thinking about Mark, then think about (Mark 12:33 NIV) “To love him with all your heart, with all your understanding and with all your strength, and to love your neighbor as yourself is more important than all burnt offerings and sacrifices.”
Jesus was the ultimate sacrifice, but the man, that was speaking with Jesus, was “not” told that he was wrong; therefore that Jesus was more important than obeying the law. But he was commended as answering wisely! (Mark 12:34 NIV) “When Jesus saw that he had answered wisely, he said to him, “You are not far from the kingdom of God.” And from then on no one dared ask him any more questions.”
I am trying to say that obeying the law is more important than relying on Jesus to take the punishment, that we deserve, for not obeying the law. Then, looking at that statement from a different angle, because I have not always obeyed the law, Jesus is more important than the law to me. What I mean is that if I had always obeyed the law I would not need a Savior.
You see that when this test is all complete, we will be made like Jesus and we will no longer sin. We will be made perfect, like Jesus, who was and is perfect, and we will no longer violate the two greatest commandments, and therefore we will not sin.
That is not to say that Jesus is, or will not be important. Jesus will be our King, instead of our Savior. One could certainly say our Savior first, and our King second, but, to me, that would be just splitting hairs.
You may have considered me an amateur at studying the Word of God, because I said that we are still under the law, but if everyone could obey the law we would not have needed a Savior and Jesus would not have had to die in our place. I am not exalting myself for my understanding, but admitting that I am a sinner, in dire need of a Savior. My failure has resulted in the death of Jesus!
In Heaven we will all obey the law and there will be peace. And we will all, “perfectly”, love the Lord, our God with all our heart, and with all our soul, and with all our mind, and with all our strength. And we will Love our neighbor as our self.
So, if you follow my logic, not only am I under the law, but I want to be under the law! I am most grateful for Jesus, that He died in my place, and that, because he did, I have the chance to become a child of God. However, as I understand, obeying the law is very, very, very important.
(Mat 7:21 NIV) “Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only he who does the will of my Father who is in heaven.
Though we no longer face the penalty for disobeying the law, shouldn’t we instruct others to obey the law, instead of just saying “we are no longer under the law”?
At the very least shouldn’t we say that if we obeyed the law Jesus would not have had to die?
Having said all of this, I do not believe you will accept it as gospel. Even though most Christians believe that iron can sharpen iron, it can not! No one tries to sharpen a knife, with another knife, and yet everyone claims that it is possible! (Well, only Christians. Those who actually make knives and swords do not). The verse really means that man cannot sharpen man. So, I cannot sharpen you. Please forgive me for trying.
If you do not accept what I said about the law, then please consider which commandment that you think we should not, or are not required, to obey: 1. Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind, or 2. Love your neighbor as yourself.
What comes first in my mind? Shame that I did not, and do not, obey the commandments, or relief that Jesus died in my place? First shame, because if I had obeyed, Jesus would not have had to take my place. But, then, absolute love for him, because He did.
You see, it is not about me, or us, but about God and what He wants from, and for, us.
I hope this eases your mind about me. I am a Christian, a child of God, and Jesus Christ is my Savior. I am not saying anything different than you would say. I am only using the phrase that we all use “Under the law” and adding my understanding to it. The phrase triggers a set response from some brothers (and sisters), but not from me and it seems to cause discord between us.
One more try, on my part. Suppose Judgment Day has come and you have lived your life not trying to obey the Law, because you believe that you are saved by the sacrificial death of our Lord and the Law is no longer important. So, you stand before God and make that claim. But our Father asks you this question, “Why do you think that it is of little importance to love Me, with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and then to love your neighbor as yourself?
Form your answer now, while you still have time to think it over.