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January 29, 2013

What the Law Does?

Romans 7

Do you not know, brothers and sisters—for I am speaking to those who know the law—that the law has authority over someone only as long as that person lives? For example, by law a married woman is bound to her husband as long as he is alive, but if her husband dies, she is released from the law that binds her to him. So then, if she has sexual relations with another man while her husband is still alive, she is called an adulteress. But if her husband dies, she is released from that law and is not an adulteress if she marries another man.

So, my brothers and sisters, you also died to the law through the body of Christ, that you might belong to another, to him who was raised from the dead, in order that we might bear fruit for God. For when we were in the realm of the flesh,the sinful passions aroused by the law were at work in us, so that we bore fruit for death. But now, by dying to what once bound us, we have been released from the law so that we serve in the new way of the Spirit, and not in the old way of the written code.

Let me make it clear first: The LAW is good. It is not bad. Law tells us what is right and wrong. Law tells us if we violate God’s command. The law has been getting some bad rap from grace preachers but people who understand grace knows that the law is good though the law will never give what we really need.

When Scripture tells us that we die to the law, it means we are no longer motivated by the law. We are no longer slaves to the law. People who are slaves to the law ( those who live their life trying to be perfect in the law) will end being more aroused in sin.

When I move in my own strength to obey the law, I end up being more proud of my own achievement or when I move in my own strength to obey the law, I end up frustrated because I cannot measure up to the law. In both cases, we will grow in pride and we know that God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble. Proud people never experience the grace of God.

But the good news is that God has released us from performing to perfect the law. We have been liberated from measuring up because we cannot. In Christ we are free from the death grip of the law and can now live in grace.

Grace that forgives, grace that transforms and grace that sustains. This is the path to our sanctification – not by trying harder but by believing better in the grace of God to transform us.