There were 613 laws and commands that the Jewish nation was under through the Old Covenant Law (OCL). To which circumcision, festivals, and sacrifice and offerings all comprised. The commonality of the OCL was that it was a service of outward acts. We see as we read biblical history how the law could not change men/women’s hearts nor can it change ours, today, we need only be told we can’t do something which only stirs up our desire to do it all the more! The Old Covenant Law serves to awaken us to the reality of our sinful condition and our need for forgiveness but gives us no remedy; Rom 3:19-20.
Enter Jesus. He brought with Him to the human race another law: the Law of Christ. He came not to take away the old law but to complete it.
“Do not think that I came to destroy the Law or the Prophets. I did not come to destroy but to fulfill.” Matt 5:17
The difference between the OCL and the Law of Christ is a matter of life and death. The OCL was shallow, and could only serve in the area of our flesh where the Law of Christ contains the power of the Spirit of God, to go beyond into the heart of man (his spirit) – to change it! 2 Cor 5:17.
The Old Covenant Law stirs in us a state of doing whereas the Law of Christ creates in us a state of being. We become what God intends for us to become which are those He is forming into the image of His Son; Rom 8:29.
What is most disconcerting is a majority of believers ignorantly serve God in Old Covent Law. We approach and serve God in the flesh/carnal level to which God calls us to worship Him in Spirit and in truth; John 4:24. Paul explains the war that happens when we attempt to serve Him in our flesh in Romans 7, to which he goes on in Romans 8 explaining the answer to such a dilemma, in short – we must walk in the Spirit and not our flesh.
We may look godly and sound godly and are loyal to our church denominations and do very good deeds in our service. We may read our bibles every day and pray but have had faith for decades – but it still only be skin deep and in reality only Surface Christians. Religious deception is extremely hard to detect if you are not discerning, especially those who are practicing it.
The Good news is the Law of Christ sets us free, and as we begin walking in Christ, we grow in the understanding and reality of this. Yet, how is it that you have a mass of believers who remain under the bondage of sin, otherwise known as addiction and this is ok! In fact, to say otherwise, is to bring great offense. I ask this group, why did Christ come – so you can continue being a slave to the sin you continue to enjoy and what nailed Christ to the cross? Paul answers this for us:
What shall we say then? Shall we continue in sin that grace may abound? Certainly not! How shall we who died to sin live any longer in it? Rom 6:1-2.
Our ‘faith’ will be revealed by what our lives produce, especially when hard times come.
Now the works of the flesh are evident, which are: adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lewdness, idolatry, sorcery, hatred, contentions, jealousies, outbursts of wrath, selfish ambitions, dissensions, heresies, envy, murders, drunkenness, revelries, and the like; of which I tell you beforehand, just as I also told you in time past, that those who practice such things will not inherit the kingdom of God.
We should be careful to not so quickly judge ourselves as being not one of them who produces such. For we are counted as ‘one of them’ even if we approve of them. We unknowingly approve of these when we watch such acts through our beloved tv shows, movies, social media, and all the rest and are counted as if it was we ourselves that was doing the sins we enjoy watching!
As we read in Romans 1, we see those who refuse God and the judgment they stand in. The absolute depravity of what these people have done we can say confidently – we have no part with them – until we come to the end:
And even as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge, God gave them over to a debased mind, to do those things which are not fitting; being filled with all unrighteousness, sexual immorality, wickedness, covetousness, maliciousness; full of envy, murder, strife, deceit, evil-mindedness; they are whisperers, backbiters, haters of God, violent, proud, boasters, inventors of evil things, disobedient to parents, undiscerning, untrustworthy, unloving, unforgiving, unmerciful; who, knowing the righteous judgment of God, that those who practice such things are deserving of death, not only do the same but also approve of those who practice them.
We must sober up and see this for what it really is.
Jesus came to set us free – from the bondage (and love of sin)- as we walk in the Spirit we will not fulfill the lust of the flesh which is subject to the law and brings condemnation.
There is therefore now no condemnation to those who are in Christ Jesus, who do not walk according to the flesh, but according to the Spirit. For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has made me free from the law of sin and death. Romans 8:1-3
Often those who are religious but without the Spirit of God are full of pride and have hard hearts and deaf ears, but there is always hope – if we would hear what the Spirit is saying and humbly examine ourselves; 2 Cor 13:5.