Not Law, but Grace (#1019)
Good morning. As you know in past sessions, we’ve been looking at some Old Testament records. We started in Joshua, we went through Judges, and Ruth, and part-way through first Samuel. We got through much of the period when Saul was King, and haven’t quite gotten to the end of that and haven’t gotten to when David became King, let alone Solomon. But we’ll save that for a later date. For the next several sessions we’re going to talk about the grace of God. Two reasons; one, we’re going to have a fellowship weekend, the weekend of June 18th, at the Dundon’s country place, down near the North Carolina border, sort of between Petersburg, Virginia and Duram, North Carolina. And the focus of that will be why grace is sufficient, which that again is preparation for a book, which Brian has been encouraging me to write on the topic. And that will be very interesting.
Some people will love agreeing about how we are saved by grace, that our salvation is guaranteed; other people will probably get fairly upset because some of the things they accepted as requirements for Christians are not a requirement for Christians, they may be something that is good for you to do. You know I still know Christians that won’t eat pork because it is in the Old Testament law. Well, if you don’t want to eat pork for whatever reason: you don’t like the flavor, you don’t like to see pigs killed, you have a dietician or a doctor that says it is bad for you, well then don’t eat pork. But don’t try to tell me it is not Biblical to eat pork. And that is just one example. There are so, so many. Everything from circumcism, having long hair, to having fabrics that have more than one kind of thread in them, to… oh, there are just so many things. Even in the Old Testament law (my memory is a little foggy on this, but I’ll have it in detail when I finally teach on it) I think in the Kosher Old Testament dietary laws, you couldn’t have meat and dairy in the same meal. So, you could have a nice steak, but you couldn’t have cream in your coffee afterwards, or you couldn’t have an ice cream desert afterwards, or whipped cream on your cherry pie.
So, again, those are Old Testament laws that no longer apply. So, we’ll go through many, many them. Some, like the ones I just mentioned are very obvious, others take a little more thought and review, but the bottom line is Christianity as a whole, not everybody, but as a whole I think is still extremely legalistic and focuses way too much on trying to control people’s behavior with laws and rules instead of encouraging them to trust God for deliverance. We’ve all had people give us rules and tell us how to behave and most of it has done very little for us. But, what has helped us, again I’m speaking for me and people I’ve talked to, I’m not speaking for the whole world, but I’ve found what helps people is learning to trust God and ask Him for help, and be confident that He’ll be there to deliver us. And that is all the grace of God, not the Law.
At any rate, what we’re going to do today is to do a brief introduction to the topic. About fifteen years ago, in 2006, I taught a class called “The Age of Grace,” which is on our website. And that was sort of an introduction to this topic. So, just to sort of get a running start, I’m going to go through the first session of that class this morning and just as an introduction. The weekend in June, in Ebony, Virginia we’ll go into much more detail. Way beyond that class form fifteen years ago. And then the book we’ll go into more detail than that.
I’m sort of pondering a little about how to put the book together, I’m not sure what I’ll do, but I’ll try to make the bulk of the book be very simple, very inspirational, without a lot of academic detail. And then where I want a lot of academic detail to really confirm a point, I’ll either put it in footnotes or better yet I’ll put it in appendices. So, your page isn’t all cluttered with footnotes. So, if chapter two is on dietary laws, for instance, the main chapter on it may be five and ten pages, and have a half-a-dozen examples, so it is very easy and fun to read; and then for the student that likes details and wants to be proved, without just taking my word for it, they can read the appendix, which will go into excruciating detail that only the very avid student or scholar will want to bother with. But they don’t have to you see, if they just want to read the fun part and enjoy it, great. If you like the details, it’s in the back. I’ll probably do it something like that, but I’m still pondering over it and I expect to go through a few iterations and get some opinions on it so you two and probably some others will get a chance to read early drafts of it, and if you have opinions on it, you’re welcome to offer them. And, if you don’t, that is OK too.
So, with that in mind, let’s start in the book of Deuteronomy…
As taught by Bruce Mahone, 20210502. All rights reserved.
Verse Listing and Notes
Deuteronomy 6:25 Law
Romans 3:20-26 Grace
Romans 4:4-5 Believing is counted for righteousness
Romans 5:1-2 This grace wherein we stand
Romans 6:14 We are under grace
Romans 11:5-6 If by grace, then no more of works
Romans 16:24 The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you all
I Corinthinians1:3, 4 Grace unto you, I thank God for the grace
I Corinthinians115:10 By the grace of God I am what I am
II Corinthinians1. 9:6-8 God is able to make all grace abound toward you, that ye, having all sufficiency in all things, may abound to every good work
Sufficiency: vs. 8 – autarkeia: A perfect condition of life in which no aid or support is needed;
Sufficiency of the necessities of life; A mind contented with its lot
II Corinthinians112:7-10 My grace is sufficient for thee (vs. 9)
Galatians 1:3, 6 Grace to you, called into the grace of Christ
Galatians2:21 I do not frustrate the grace of God
Ephesians 1:2, 7 Grace to you, the riches of his grace
Ephesians 2:5, 7-8 By grace are ye saved
Ephesians 3:1-13 Administration of the grace of God (vs. 2)
Titus 3:7 Justified by his grace, heirs according to the hope of eternal life.
Hebrews 4:16 Let us come boldly unto the throne of grace
I Peter 1:13 Wherefore gird up the loins of your mind and be strong: Therefore, prepare your minds for action; be self-controlled; set your hope fully on the grace to be given you when Jesus Christ is revealed. (NIV)