Lesson 5 of 12
Many teach that God intended the Ten Commandments to remain in force and to be studied even after Jesus Christ came. In other words, that God intended for Christians to mix the Law of Moses with the New Covenant tools. Nothing could be further from the truth. It is often necessary to reinforce the distinctions between the tools of the first and those of the Second Covenant before a person can gain confidence to make the transition to the Second Covenant tools. That is what we will do here.
There are two misunderstandings about the Law the Moses that are helpful for us to review here:
In regard to the first misunderstanding, we need a brief review of God’s purpose for the Law of Moses to help us understand its purpose. The Law of Moses was not given to prove our righteousness, it was given to prove that there is a conflict between God and man. The law proves this conflict exists every time you feel convicted of wrong doing. The law was given to show the flesh its sinful state until Christ should come to redeem man.
God would say: “I gave you the law to show you your condition, to show you a conflict exists, but I will not allow you to rest in the law because the conscience will not allow you to rest – if it were not for the law you would not know this conflict existed. But now you turn to me for your true hope, and that is the purpose of the law.” The law is good, if it fulfills this purpose of God (Romans 7:12).
God dissolved the First Covenant because the Law of Moses served its purpose. By it man came to understand that he is imperfect and incapable of pleasing God. Jesus said, “I am the truth” (John 14:6), which means: “I am the law and principle you are to follow for righteousness.”
God now uses the Law of Grace and Truth to set the boundaries for our faith in the New Covenant. These boundaries bring new restrictions to faith. Not understanding the element of righteousness, nor how God designed Jesus Christ to be our new standard and the Law of Grace to be our new law, many continued to trust the Law of Moses as their guide. The result is devastating!
They trusted the Law of Moses to continue to show them their sin, not knowing that God’s will is that they should have no more conscience of sins: “because that the worshippers once purged should have had no more conscience of sins. For it is not possible that the blood of bulls and of goats should take away sins,” (Hebrews 10:3-4).
God dissolved the First Covenant because He does not want the defiled conscience; He desires to fellowship with the purged conscience. The conscience is supposed to carry God’s testimony. When Adam sinned he accepted Satan’s testimony, which God condemns. This is what the law proves.
Interestingly, those who use the Law of Moses are trusting it to bring sin to remembrance, not realizing that this “remembrance of sin” has no power to change their nature. We can understand that while the Ten Commandments spoke to the flesh to restrict it’s expression, that law did not reach into the inner man to change man’s nature. This is what the Law could not do.
On the other hand, the Law of Grace and Truth removes the power of sin upon the flesh by moving the pattern of faith from the flesh to the Spirit. The Law of Grace and Truth are set in Jesus Christ who set the pattern of faith in Himself. His commandments of grace and truth are written within the heart to free the soul from the pattern of sin and death, thus freeing the conscience from guilt and shame.
When does that happen? When does God write His law upon your heart and mind? God writes His law upon your heart and mind when you use the tools of Jesus’ covenant. This is why God endowed the tools with His new Law of Grace and Truth. By that law He will do a new work in you; He will free the conscience from guilt and shame and set the virtues of Christ within. It is really that simple.
“Therefore by the deeds of the law there shall no flesh be justified in his sight: for by the law is the knowledge of sin,” (Romans 3:20). There it is again. We have a choice, we either desire the knowledge of sin, which comes by the Ten Commandments, or we desire the knowledge of Jesus Christ, which comes by His new Law of Grace and Truth.
God dissolved the First Covenant because He was establishing new knowledge in Jesus Christ for our righteousness, that we no longer live by the knowledge of sin, but by the knowledge of Jesus Christ and His righteousness. God designed the Ten Commandments as the governor of the flesh until Christ should come and give us a new law in Himself. For you to fully benefit from the Law of Grace it is necessary for you to know what the tools of the covenant are and how to use them.
Always remember: Your faith reflects the one you are joined to. The often repentance that we see in the church is not a product of the Law of Grace and Truth, but a product of the Law of Moses. That law does not assist you to stand in confidence before God, it takes away your confidence by the conviction of sin.