First Legal, Then Relational
Rom 5:18 So then as through one transgression there resulted condemnation to all men, even so through one act of righteousness there resulted justification of life to all men.
Rom 5:19 For as through the one man’s disobedience the many were made sinners, even so through the obedience of the One the many will be made righteous.
Rom 5:20 And the Law came in that the transgression might increase; but where sin increased, grace abounded all the more,
Rom 5:21 that, as sin reigned in death, even so grace might reign through righteousness to eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.
Rom 6:1 What shall we say then? Are we to continue in sin that grace might increase?
Rom 6:2 May it never be! How shall we who died to sin still live in it?
Much Scripture to show the pervasiveness of the concept
- Salvation through the blood of Jesus
- The blood of the sinless is available to pay for the debt of the sinful
God deals with the possible sinful acts through the Law, with the penalty through Jesus
Jesus work covers every condemnation; every time the Law is changed, diminishes Jesus’ work
Mat 5:17 “Do not think that I came to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I did not come to abolish, but to fulfill.
Mat 5:18 “For truly I say to you, until heaven and earth pass away, not the smallest letter or stroke shall pass away from the Law, until all is accomplished.
Mat 5:19 “Whoever then annuls one of the least of these commandments, and so teaches others, shall be called least in the kingdom of heaven; but whoever keeps and teaches them, he shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven.
Rom 8:3 For what the Law could not do, weak as it was through the flesh, God did: sending His own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh and as an offering for sin, He condemned sin in the flesh,
Rom 8:4 in order that the requirement of the Law might be fulfilled in us,
- Fulfill – accomplish its purpose, strengthens it à point to righteousness, assure condemnation
Jesus’ sacrifice enriches the Law, empowers it to complete its role – point to a Savior
Robust law satisfied completely by the blood of the righteous
Faith is not a substitution for the Law – an enabler
Now what? No restraint on our sin?
- Life through the relationship of the Spirit
- Constrained by love – friendship, family, love, affection, create the boundaries of our choices
Law (rules) are the least effective restraint on sin available
Punishment is more effective
Love is most effective
Difference between a wedding and a marriage
No relation between cost of the wedding and the length of the marriage
2 Cor 5:14 For the love of Christ controls us, having concluded this, that one died for all, therefore all died;
2 Cor 5:15 and He died for all, that they who live should no longer live for themselves, but for Him who died and rose again on their behalf.
- The true aspects of our lives are embraced in our experience of God
- most would say that relationships are the most valuable parts of their lives
- house on fire – children, TV; which do you save
- funeral – feel the real pain of separation; pain is a sign of love
- familiar and experienced with relationships
- we have had them
- some good and some bad
- at every age – experienced with relationships
- by the time we are through, most have done them all
- God uses every relationship to describe the Christian life –
Parent – child God, Our Father
Master – slave we are bondslaves of Christ
Brother fellow heirs with Christ
Friend I call you friend
Husband – wife Bride of Christ
Monarch King of kings
- God wants us to take all the emotion, energy, passion, hopes, affection and joy that we pour into all of our relationship and share that with God as well
- thoughts and reflections
- self-denial – spouse, children
- service – further God’s name, make God look good
Rom 8:28 And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose.
1 Cor 16:22 If anyone does not love the Lord, let him be accursed.
2 Th 3:5 And may the Lord direct your hearts into the love of God and into the steadfastness of Christ.
James 1:12 Blessed is a man who perseveres under trial; for once he has been approved, he will receive the crown of life, which the Lord has promised to those who love Him.
- Relationship terms – people try to turn them into rules
“what the law could not do” – stop thinking in terms of rules, think in relationships
Relationships have more influence over our behavior than rules, much of what we deny ourselves is based solely on the pain it would cause those we love
Fruit of the Spirit – relationship builders
Gal 5:22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness,
Gal 5:23 gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law.
Christian life – learn to like God, then learn to love God
Substitute love for believe in the Apostles’ Creed
Marriage – follow all the rules, still not have a marriage
Role as a pastor – do my job, follow the rules, adhere to the job description, still not have a ministry
Provide everything for wife, husband, children, still not have a family
Do everything the church could ask, everything taught in books, still not have a connection with God
1 Pet 1:8 and though you have not seen Him, you love Him, and though you do not see Him now, but believe in Him, you greatly rejoice with joy inexpressible and full of glory,
Jude 1:20 But you, beloved, building yourselves up on your most holy faith; praying in the Holy Spirit;
Jude 1:21 keep yourselves in the love of God, waiting anxiously for the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ to eternal life.
Mat 22:36 “Teacher, which is the great commandment in the Law?”
Mat 22:37 And He said to him, “‘YOU SHALL LOVE THE LORD YOUR GOD WITH ALL YOUR HEART, AND WITH ALL YOUR SOUL, AND WITH ALL YOUR MIND.’
Mat 22:38 “This is the great and foremost commandment.
Life without rules, a life full of love
I Love You, Lord and I lift my voice to worship you!