Though the law reveals God’s moral will for us, the law itself has no power to enable us to obey it. The law commands obedience without providing any enabling power, it is this in this sense a source of bondage.
In what sense did we die to the law? Paul explained it in Romans 3:20, “There no one will be declared righteous in his sight by observing the law; rather, through the law we become conscious of sin.” likewise in Romans 6:14 ” For sin shall not be your master, because you are not under law, but under grace.”
From these verses we understand that we died to the curse and condemnation that resulted from our inability to perfectly keep the law. We died to the law in order that we might live in the realm of grace. The difference lies in the reason to obey and in the ability in which to obey. Consider the following contrast from the book “Transforming Grace” by Jerry Bridges.
Old Way of the Law
New Way of the Spirit
|External code 1. The moral precepts of God are only an external code of conduct.||Internal Desire 1.The Spirit inclines our hearts and gives us a desire to obey.|
|Commanding 2. The law commands but gives no enabling power for obedience.||Enabling 2. The Spirit enables us to obey the law’s commands.|
|Hostility 3. Because of our hostility to God’s law, the commands of the law actually provoked and incited us to sin.||Delight 3. The Spirit removes our hostility, writes the law on our hearts, and causes us to delight in God’s Law.|
|Fear 4. We try to obey because of a fear of punishment for disobedience or in order to win favor with God.||Gratitude 4. We obey out of gratitude for favor and love already given.|
|Working 5. We perform in order to be accepted by God.||Relying 5. We rely solely on His perfect righteousness, we feel accepted by Him.|
Let’s ask ourselves, How do I view God’s law and God’s grace? Is it on the basis of your personal performance, or on the basis of the merit of Jesus Christ?
Do you try to obey by your own will power and determination, or do you rely on the Spirit daily for His power to enable you to obey?
But we are dependent on Him to do our work; we cannot do anything apart from Him. Only He can create in our hearts the desire to obey God, we are desperately dependent on Him.
I really like Romans 12:1-2, I always meditate on it day and night for the past few weeks, it says
“Therefore, I urge you, brothers and sisters, in view of God’s mercy (as we get to know Him, his grace and mercy more and more) , to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God—this is your true and proper worship. 2 Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.
That’s the same prayer for every reader of this post. May His good, pleasing and perfect will always find you.
If you like this post, please don’t hesitate to share, tweet, comment or subscribe to our blog posts. We hope to hear from you too. Thanks and God bless you!