Wednesday, August 4, 2010


"... Received ye the Spirit by the works of the law, or by the hearing of faith? Are ye so foolish? having begun in the Spirit, are ye now made perfect by the flesh?"
"For as many as are of the works of the law are under the curse: for it is written, Cursed is every one that continueth not in all things which are written in the book of the law to do them. But that no man is justified by the law in the sight of God, it is evident: for, The just shall live by faith. And the law is not of faith: but, The man that doeth them shall live in them. Christ hath redeemed us from the curse of the law, being made a curse for us: for it is written, Cursed is every one that hangeth on a tree:"
  (Galatians 3:1-13

In this last installment of The Apostle Paul UNplugged we will focus on the "works of the law."
The works of the law are often condemned in the New Testament, and because Paul does not always speak plainly many conclude that he is speaking of the Commandments of God. This however, is not the case.

We have already learned that we must establish the law, and that we will be judged by Christ out of the law. So we must first ask the question... What is the Curse of the Law?

"And if ye have erred, and not observed all these commandments, which the LORD hath spoken unto Moses, Even all that the LORD hath commanded you by the hand of Moses, from the day that the LORD commanded Moses, and henceforward among your generations;
 Then it shall be, if ought be committed by ignorance without the knowledge of the congregation, that all the congregation shall offer one young bullock for a burnt offering, for a sweet savour unto the LORD, with his meat offering, and his drink offering, according to the manner, and one kid of the goats for a sin offering.  And the priest shall make an atonement for all the congregation of the children of Israel, and it shall be forgiven them; for it is ignorance: and they shall bring their offering, a sacrifice made by fire unto the LORD, and their sin offering before the LORD, for their ignorance...  And if any soul sin through ignorance, then he shall bring a she goat of the first year for a sin offeringAnd the priest shall make an atonement for the soul that sinneth ignorantly, when he sinneth by ignorance before the LORD, to make an atonement for him; and it shall be forgiven him.
 Ye shall have one law for him that sinneth through ignorance, both for him that is born among the children of Israel, and for the stranger that sojourneth among them.  But the soul that doeth ought presumptuously, whether he be born in the land, or a stranger, the same reproacheth the LORD; and that soul shall be cut off from among his people. Because he hath despised the word of the LORD, and hath broken his commandment, that soul shall utterly be cut off; his iniquity shall be upon him." (Numbers 15:22-31)

When you broke the Commandments of God, you fell under the curse. Meaning you then had to sacrifice (take something that was worth money [bullocks & goats] and give it away) something as a sign for your repentance, for violation of God's Commandments.

"Christ hath redeemed us from the curse of the law, being made a curse for us: for it is written, Cursed is every one that hangeth on a tree... Wherefore then serveth the law? It was added because of transgressions, till the seed should come to whom the promise was made; and it was ordained by angels in the hand of a mediator." (Galatians 3:13-19)

This law that Paul is speaking of, is the law of Animal Sacrifice.  This is the law that was added because of transgressions. When God spoke the 10 Commandments he added no more:
"These words the LORD spake unto all your assembly in the mount out of the midst of the fire, of the cloud, and of the thick darkness, with a great voice: and he added no more. And he wrote them in two tables of stone, and delivered them unto me." (Deuternonmy 5:22)

But after the people entered into the covenant (contract) with the Lord, Moses went up to receive the Commandments written on the tables of stone, meanwhile Aaron made a golden calf for the people to worship, placing them in direct violation of the first 3 Commandments. It was because of this incident that the law of Animal Sacrifice or the law of works came into existence.

EVERYTHING written in the Old Testament is for us to learn and understand. It all had a purpose: to give us a better understanding of The Most High and His Christ.
"For whatsoever things were written aforetime were written for our learning, that we through patience and comfort of the scriptures might have hope." (Romans 5:4)

So then now we understand what law Paul is referring to when he mentions,  
"Wherefore the law was our schoolmaster to bring us unto Christ, that we might be justified by faith. But after that faith is come, we are no longer under a schoolmaster." (Galatians 3:19-25)

After Jesus came we were no longer required to kill animals for our sins, animal sacrifice was our 'schoolmaster' to teach us what Christ would do and represent. 
The Apostle to the Gentiles gives us further details:
Can you now decipher which law he is speaking of?

"For the law having a shadow of good things to come, and not the very image of the things, can never with those sacrifices which they offered year by year continually make the comers thereunto perfect. For then would they not have ceased to be offered? because that the worshippers once purged should have had no more conscience of sins. But in those sacrifices there is a remembrance again made of sins every year. For it is not possible that the blood of bulls and of goats should take away sins. Wherefore when he cometh into the world, he saith, Sacrifice and offering thou wouldest not, but a body hast thou prepared me:" (Hebrews 10:1-4)

Because the blood of bulls and goats cannot take away sins The Father prepared a body for Jesus. This was not made up in the New Testament. Remember the Old Testament is for our learning. So let us learn where this was written /decided.

"Sacrifice and offering thou didst not desire; mine ears hast thou opened: burnt offering and sin offering hast thou not required.
 Then said I, Lo, I come: in the volume of the book it is written of me,
 I delight to do thy will, O my God: yea, thy law is within my heart.
 I have preached righteousness in the great congregation: lo, I have not refrained my lips, O LORD, thou knowest." (Psalms 40:4-9)

Jesus sacrificed His life to save ours because it was the will of God.

"In burnt offerings and sacrifices for sin thou hast had no pleasure. Then said I, Lo, I come (in the volume of the book it is written of me,) to do thy will, O God. Above when he said, Sacrifice and offering and burnt offerings and offering for sin thou wouldest not, neither hadst pleasure therein; which are offered by the law; Then said he, Lo, I come to do thy will, O God. He taketh away the first, that he may establish the second. By the which will we are sanctified through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once for all." (Hebrews 10:6-10)

He took away the laws of Animal Sacrifce; The Law of Works, to establish the law of faith; Faith in Christ. Now-a-days, if we break any of the Commandments of God, we need only repent, turn away from our unrighteous ways, and believe that Christ is willing and able to forgive and justify us before the Father.

FOOD 4 THOUGHT (you do the dishes): We as believers (yet not eyewitnesses) must be very careful when reading the writings of Paul.  We must remember the Apostle Paul was a very learned man. A Pharisee meaning he grew up learning all the scriptures concerning the Messiah and is therefore able to go into a much deeper discussion than Peter, John, or James.

Peter also testifies to this fact, and issues the church a proper warning:
"And account that the longsuffering of our Lord is salvation; even as our beloved brother Paul also according to the wisdom given unto him hath written unto you;
As also in all his epistles, speaking in them of these things; in which are some things hard to be understood, which they that are unlearned and unstable wrest, as they do also the other scriptures, unto their own destruction.
Ye therefore, beloved, seeing ye know these things before, beware lest ye also, being led away with the error of the wicked, fall from your own stedfastness.
 But grow in grace, and in the knowledge of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. To him be glory both now and for ever. Amen." (2Peter 3:15-18)

This is why Paul is always misquoted and misunderstood. His writings are not for babes in the word. But for those who have been seasoned in the scriptures, those whom can rightfully divide the Word of Truth!

May the Lord add a blessing to the reading and Understanding of His Word...

Additional Scriptures:
Isaiah 53:1-12

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