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SABBATH BIBLE STUDY
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Compiled by JS LOWTHER
Why The Law?
To Make a Great Nation In Christ
Gal_3:19 (ESV) Why then the law?
It was added because of transgressions, until the offspring should come to whom the promise had been made, and it was put in place through angels by an intermediary.
Gal 3:20 Now an intermediary implies more than one, but God is one.
Gal 3:21 Is the law then contrary to the promises of God? Certainly not! For if a law had been given that could give life, then righteousness would indeed be by the law.
Gal 3:22 But the Scripture imprisoned everything under sin, so that the promise by faith in Jesus Christ might be given to those who believe.
Gal 3:23 Now before faith came, we were held captive under the law, imprisoned until the coming faith would be revealed.
Gal 3:24 So then, the law was our guardian until Christ came, in order that we might be justified by faith.
Gal 3:25 But now that faith has come, we are no longer under a guardian,
Gal 3:26 for in Christ Jesus you are all sons of God, through faith.
There are probably 3 different ways some would look at this Chapters speech, but these are the prominent 3, of which I’ve called for this study:
1. The chronological interpretation
2. The national or covenantal law interpretation
3. The personal faith interpretation
All of these interpretations have merit of evidence in this Chapter and in the Scriptural narrative as a whole.
While we may discuss these differences in more detail it is important to recognize the distinct aspects of Paul’s discussion as well as the unification of the distinct aspects.
For instance when we read Gal_3:2 this only would I learn of you, Received ye the Spirit by the works of the law, or by the hearing of faith?
It is evident we are speaking to the Galatians and individuals in the Galatian Church: “would I learn of you”
Gal 3:7 Know ye therefore that they which are of faith, the same are the children of Abraham.
The “they which are of faith,” expresses the many individuals coming into collection.
Gal_3:8 And the scripture, foreseeing that God would justify the nations through faith, preached before the gospel unto Abraham, saying, In thee shall all nations be blessed.
This qualifies the verse 7’s “they which are of Faith, are the same as the children of Abraham” by promise these are then the heathen or Nations justified by Faith through the proto- Gospel of this Justification by Faith to Abraham: saying, In thee shall all nations be blessed.
Now it is not a scholarly stretch to assure the reader that YHWH God Promised Abraham real children, from Abraham’s real loins which he had, and while the Gospel the good news was in this one seed and off-spring of Abraham was the Word in a vision who promised himself as Abraham’s shield and exceedingly great reward, that promise brought with it the Nation(s) which Abraham produced, which were in Him as well.
Consider the agriculture of any crop from the garden or of the field:
When we cultivate for a specific fruit we save the best fruits which in themselves carry the seeds of that fruit, so as a farmer we save the best seeds by saving the best fruits and harvesting the seeds, and in the fullness of time (on a human level) we desire to have a crop of that one seed, we saw all of those good traits in, so we intentionally find other fruit with those seed in them, and we plant them all, still we must get rid of the plants that sprout up poorly or are wilted and we save the best seed from the propagation of those fruits which we may call after our own name.
In the process of looking for this perfect seed we are looking through hundreds or thousands of plants and fruits created, some are worthless, some are good for animals, some are good but are not the best and some are good to be eaten in one fashion while the other is sold as prime, the best are kept for seed for the next crop next year.
The point is that all of the nations which came from Abraham were part of the miraculous promise to a man as good as dead in his old age, and that man made nations, a multitude of nations, or a company of nations, and the way to find the choice individual seeds of those nations which came from Abraham’s loins is to look for Faith in Christ 1st and 2nd for the law of God on their hearts.
This we find in the European peoples of the world and have for 1000’s of years, as the Gospel was preached to the nations the Holy spirit has raised up the evangelists and preachers, the planters, builders and reformers in all the ages since the cross focus upon the European peoples, not because the Gospel is not preached in every continent, but because Father Abraham was given a promise which the Holy Spirit will fulfill.
This Promise is not found in the works of law, this promise is not found in the rites of the church which come and go, which change and morph through out time, and this promise is secures by Faith in Jesus Christ as the good news, the Gospel of this people’s salvation.
May the Lord call other people to be blessed? Absolutely, the promise was intended to bless the earth and all the peoples of it Gen_12:1-3), and to bless the earth and every creature under heaven (Mar_16:15).
This promise by admitting to its direction to a multitude of Nations of Abraham’s loins which will through the faith of Christ bless all others, means a distinction must be made between Abraham’s Nations blessed by the one Seed and those whom Abraham’s Nations will bless.
And while our brothers of the Christian Faith will not recognize who History by the Spirit identifies as the Nations of Father Abraham through Faith in Jesus Christ Alone as that people who have brought the blessings of God’s moral Law right beside the Faith of Christ for millennia,, we recognize it to the glory of God. not to boast our own selves, but to boast in the fulfillment of the will of God we can point to and say this multitude of nations fulfill this promise to Abraham, not by Gnostic spiritualism, but by Spiritual reality.
Why does this matter to the subject of ‘Why the Law?’, it matters because it helps identify why we need the Law as a people.
Why did Greeks and Roman-Latins need the Hebrew Scriptures in their own tongues?
Why did the Saxons: English and Germans, French and Dutch need the Scriptures in their own tongues?
Scots and the Irish, the Welsh and the Brits so earnestly preach and teach. Why is it this company of Nations with all of their brethren in Europe need to have the Scriptures in their own Phonetic alphabet?
Why did they need to make God’s law part of their Common Law? and in some instances recognize that their pre-Christian Common Law was God’s Law?
It is because these which are of this faith, Faith in Christ, the same are the children of Abraham. And they which are of this faith are blessed with faithful Abraham.
And as by Faith Abraham was blessed in his Nation being Given God’s Law to be a great Nation, a wise Nation a Nation which has God so close to them by this Law, these Children who are of Faith do not wince at the condemnation of the Law but are made more perfect by it adding unto their faith with it. It is not just the standard which condemned and scattered Israel, the great nation of Abraham by faithless disobedience, but it is the revelation of Righteousness given 430 years after the promise was made where in God’s Eternal Righteousness was set in Stone by his own spiritual finger (Rom_7:14).
So let this be known and learned from, the Law cannot Justify you in the sight of God, nor can any work of the Law, but certainly know that the Law can condemn you, and that Faith accounted righteousness by God from Christ is the only way to break that curse, a faith that you your self can not even fathom of yourself, and that is why it takes a free-gift from God to receive it.
So then as Christians, the Israel of God Justified by Faith, gathered from the corners of the earth by the Word of Faith, as the faithful children of Abraham’s promise, Why the Law? Can we ditch it? Do we need it if we are Justified by Faith, do we even need anything else?
If the Law added because of transgression, as prior discussed: revealed on Mt. Sinai 430 after the promise of Abraham was given because death reigned from Adam to Moses, this time, the law was there added to Check death because of transgressions till the seed should come to whom the promise was made, is then when the seed (christ) has come do we have the ability to do the opposite of add? can we subtract or remove the Law revealed at Sinai?
The answer cannot be that the Law was added because it made us righteous ever, this is evident through scripture and is smashed right in verse 21 “if there had been a law given which could have given life, verily righteousness should have been by the law. “, This says the Law added was not added to give life or to make one righteous. So the addition of the Law was never now or then for the reason of life or making righteous.
But rather “Scripture imprisoned everything under sin, so that the promise by faith in Jesus Christ might be given to those who believe.”
So why was it added because of transgressions brothers and sisters? for us to carry with us, to further bring us to Christ, and within that Faith is the answer of who Christ is and why he can give life and declare righteous, and within that Faith is the answer of how he has the power to declare you righteous, and that answer exists that He is the Word that has been since the beginning, and that Word who was God and was with God has that power within himself and always has.
And in the 2nd case this understanding of Christ as the Word brings with it the source of All of God’s Law and becomes the evident reason why the Scriptures which we call plainly the Word of God is so precious to us.
In ending on this aspect of faithfully believing in this reality we have
Gal 3:25 now that faith has come, we are no longer under a guardian,
Gal 3:26 for in Christ Jesus you are all sons of God, through faith.
Gal 3:27 for as many of you as were baptized into Christ have put on Christ.
Gal_3:28 there is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is no male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus.
Gal 3:29 and if you are Christ’s, then you are Abraham’s offspring, heirs according to promise.
The first Lawful act a Christian is called to in subduing his flesh is a simple immersive bath we call baptism, a Law of God sited so simply as it was given at Sinai time and again by the word of God “…He shall wash his flesh in water, and he shall be clean…”
This bath applies to all the nations of Abraham of the Judeans and the Helens, the slave and the free man, men and women are all called in one faith, a faith reckoned as righteousness before this bath by which you know you have put on Christ. Putting on Christ and his resurrection as the one who makes the conscience good by faith and giving that Answer or response to the that faith by a washing that lawfully identified filth of the flesh as said by Peter (1Pe_3:21) is no small matter of confession and submission for one to put on.
It should never be confused when you who put on Christ by witness of another were truly IN CHRIST, it was when Christ bore your sin in His Body, the sin of Abraham was bore that day and so was the sin of every believer bore that day, yet for us independently understand that we are to give this answer in this bath to wash away the sins of the flesh which we all carry day after day as imprisoned and identified by the law as a guardian our Faith in Christ which has Faith in God’s Word can see Baptism as part of this lesson we had learned as Children. Thank God we are taught as Children so that we do not have to learn as heirs. If it were that we learned as heirs after inheritance we would never be sure if we truly would inherit, and in this way as before the death of the Fathers of old we learn from the record of the Law that all gave inheritance before the father died. Not that out father will ever die, but that the Father gives us a seal and earnest of his spirit by allowing us to believe before we ever take hold of a thing in this body.
Why the Law? Because it was added for transgression till the seed should come… and if the seed has come and we believe it the law is no longer added for transgression but rather for further instruction to continue to instruct by God’s righteousness this mortal body which is not subject to the law of God neither indeed can it truly be subject.
Gal 4:1 … the heir, as long as he is a child, is no different from a slave, though he is the owner of everything,
Gal 4:2 but he is under guardians and managers (tutors and teachers) until the date set by his father.
Gal 4:3 In the same way we also, when we were children, were enslaved to the elementary principles of the world.
Gal 4:4 But when the fullness of time had come, God sent forth his Son, born of woman, born under the law,
Gal 4:5 to redeem those who were under the law, so that we might receive adoption as sons.
Gal 4:6 And because you are sons, God has sent the Spirit of his Son into our hearts, crying, “Abba! Father!”
Gal 4:7 So you are no longer a slave, but a son, and if a son, then an heir through God.
If we have inherited, and the Law of God, the Law of Moses was our Schoolmaster set over us children, and what little of it we needed to see our Faults to drive us to Faith, then what is the inheritance to be governed by? What lesson were we to keep with us and reflect on? Is it not the Word of God? Rather than sin by the Law unto condemnation, we inherit righteousness after faith in Christ by His righteousness imputed and accounted.
The Faithful and Baptized in Christ which have put on Christ by the law of Baptism have the resource to the righteousness of the Law as teacher and brother.
When this faithful people desire to be saints together and rule by the law of God as the instructor for society the great nation of Abraham’s promise is being fulfilled, wielding a power of instruction if it is not consumed in self righteousness is more effective than all other Law to this end, to … teach transgressors God’s ways, and sinners will return to YHWH. Psa_51:13
It is this people who believe:
Psa_19:7-14 the law of the LORD is perfect, reviving the soul; the testimony of the LORD is sure, making wise the simple;
19:8 the precepts of the LORD are right, rejoicing the heart; the commandment of the LORD is pure, enlightening the eyes;
19:9 the fear of the LORD is clean, enduring forever; the rules of the LORD are true, and righteous altogether.
19:10 More to be desired are they than gold, even much fine gold; sweeter also than honey and drippings of the honeycomb.
It is this Law which the faithful say:
Psa 19:11 Moreover, by them is your servant warned; in keeping them there is great reward.
Psa 19:12 Who can discern his errors? Declare me innocent from hidden faults.
Psa 19:13 Keep back your servant also from presumptuous sins; let them not have dominion over me! Then I shall be blameless, and innocent of great transgression.
Psa 19:14 Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be acceptable in your sight, O LORD, my rock and my redeemer.
Just imagine as Faithful King David was King and Judge over Israel, the Faithful in Christ being the judge who imposes the sentence of YHWH God by His Law and the power that Judge has in preaching the Gospel of Christ to the soul who is condemned.
If ever there is a great Nation upon the Earth it would be one such as this where the onus of the Judge is not only to execute the divine sentence on earth but to make known to the condemned the Faith which alone has power to render him innocent before the most terrible thrown of the mighty God which he is soon to appear.
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