“Who is the Law for?”

This question is one that gets asked frequently, and is therefore undoubtedly worthy of being ANSWERED somewhat frequently as well!

 

“I was having a discussion…talking about the Law and how everyone had to follow it.  They disagreed and said that the law(s) were for specific people and groups during those time periods. How should I reply to this? I say that it is for all of us but they continue to disagree, and also say that gentiles don’t have to follow the law (like the dietary laws)…and that would bring us to bondage.”

The problem starts, I contend, with a misunderstanding of what “The Law” is. If we don’t know what a word even means, how do we claim to know to whom it applies, or does not?The Hebrew word in question is “torah”, and mistranslation as the modern English “law” is responsible for much of the “twisting” that is so obvious today. A far better understanding is that it means “instruction”. (“Instruction” might even INCLUDED ‘law’ – but they are not synonymous. Try substituting that understanding in MUCH of Paul’s writings, and they will make FAR more sense.) When He wants to be specific, He uses the specific terms meaning “statutes, judgements, and commandments” in the Hebrew.His ‘torah’ or INSTRUCTION is for our blessing. He says so. (Deuteronomy chapter 30, among others) And He said it never changes. (Paul tells us that, too – and that it applies even when the ‘Schoolmaster’ is no longer with us; we should remember His instruction, and certainly not “sin more, that grace might abound.“)His Torah applies to those who choose to walk in obedience to Him, and who want to be “grafted in”.    (If we ask to live in the Father’s house – is it too really much to ask that we honor His will? After all, it is our “reasonable service“.)

Finally, and this is a “whole ‘nuther can o’ worms” – the “law” that brings bondage is MAN‘s, not YHVH‘s! The Pharisees were repeatedly called “hypocrites” because they “added to” His statutes, judgments, and commandments – and then CALLED what they mandated ‘law’, or sometimes ‘the traditions of the elders’. They “added burdens” – and it was THEIR demands that were too difficult, not His! (See Deuteronomy 30:10-14; it could not be more clear. Then compare to what Yahushua says repeatedly, in places like Matthew 15:6-9 and Mark 7 — that “by your tradition” you have made the “commandments of YHVH of no effect“.)

No, we don’t HAVE to obey Him. People are free to choose cursing over blessing, and death over life. We can ignore His Instruction. We don’t have to be grafted in, either, or accept His gift. But “if you love Me, keep My commands,” is a pretty good reason to try.

 

 

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