Thursday, June 14, 2012

Romans 7:11, Don't Throw Out The Baby

Romans 7:11
Genesis 3:13
In Christianity today there often seems to me that God's Law is excessively degraded. We've identified it as insufficient and recognized our need for redemption through Christ Jesus, but then we misinterpreted the importance of the Law and overly criticized it. We've discarded the good with the bad. We've thrown out the baby with the bathwater.
When Adam blamed Eve and Eve blamed the serpent for their sin, neither criticized the commandment God gave them which they failed to obey. Neither said the commandment was unjust or insufficient or deficient in any way. Of course, it was just one commandment and they had no predisposition to sin like we do. Yet Paul speaks of the Law (far more than just one commandment) as being very good and attributes his failure to keep it to his own weakness and sin's ability to take advantage of a good thing for his downfall.
I do not follow all 613 commandments of Mosaic Law. But I have read all of the Old Testament and I find the Law builds up my relationship with God. The same God who gave the Law on Mt. Sinai sent His own Son to redeem us. Some of the commandments tell me how I should live in order to honor Him (i.e. the 10 Commandments). Some emphasize His holiness (the restrictions on entering the Holy of Holies). Some reveal His care in the health and well-being of His people (treating slaves honorably). Reading the Law emphasizes to me my inability to keep all of it perfectly and therefore my desperate need for the redemption Christ offers. I have been set free from the Law (Rom 7:6) because it is good but Satan knows how to use it all too well for my downfall. Yet because it is good I still read it and let it guide my decision making and teach me more about who God is and how to become more like Him.

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