All Scripture references are taken from the Authorized, 1611, Kings James Version of the Bible unless otherwise noted. Parenthesis insertions have been added for clarity.
Part 1 of 7 – Why Did God Institute the Written Law?
The Apostle Paul wrote to the Ephesian believers concerning their “past” condition. He said in “time past” they had been “by nature (by Sin-nature) children of wrath” (Eph 2:3). They, as all men, had walked under the influence of “the spirit (the Sin-spirit) that works in the children of disobedience” (Eph 2:2). Paul could write this because he knew all men are conceived “in sin” (Psa. 51:5) and they cannot change their sin “nature” anymore than “the leopard” can change “his spots” (Jer. 13:23). Romans 3:10 … There is none righteous, no, not one:
Many sincere people and even Christians misunderstand God’s written Word. They suppose that God gave the written Mosaic “Law” to help men to become good and be counted righteous. Though there was some temporal benefit to “the Law,” it is clear that God never intended or expected that that “the Law” would to help men to be genuinely good or become genuinely righteous. Romans 3:20 says, “by the deeds of “the Law” there shall no flesh be justified (Gk., dikaios, counted innocent or righteous) in His sight ...”
Actually, the written Mosaic Laws were given to Israel and “the natural law” that was provided by “the tree of the knowledge of good and evil” at the fall of Adam were to witness to mankind that they all are hopeless and helpless sinners, needing to receive Christ as their personal Savior. With such a clear written word from Paul, how foolish it is to look to “the Law” to help us be justified or to be made righteous.
In our secular world the laws of man provides the criminal a “just trial” before a judge and jury of his peers; yet these laws do not enable him keep the law, rather the law condemns him. Likewise, the Bible teaches that “the Law” is to declare each of us guilty before God. “(So) THAT EVERY MOUTH MAY BE STOPPED, and all the WORLD MAY BE BROUGHT IN GUILTY BEFORE GOD” (Rom. 3:19).
How does “the Law” then “stop every mouth”?
“For BY “the Law” IS THE KNOWLEDGE (epignosko, recognition) OF SIN” (Rom. 3:20).
How does “the Law” work to make men recognize their guilt and innate inability to meet God’s righteous standard? God gave “the Law” so as to empower, exacerbate, and excite the Sin nature.
“… THE STRENGTH (dunamis, power) OF SIN IS THE LAW.” (1Corinthians 15:56b)
“The law entered (so) THAT THE OFFENSE MIGHT ABOUND” (Rom. 5:20)
“(So) That SIN BY THE COMMANDMENT might BECOME EXCEEDING SINFUL” (Rom. 7:13)
The Apostle Paul’s conclusion concerning man’s sin laden condition is this. “… by the deeds of “the Law” there shall no flesh be justified (counted innocent) in His sight” (Rom. 3:20)
Man is hopelessness and his condition is recognized as the “wretched man.” “O wretched man that I am! WHO shall deliver me from the body of this death?” (Romans 7:24) Man’s inability to keep “the Law” is intended to lead men to believe and receive Christ alone as their Savior.
These Pauline verses provide an outline of man’s need and the good news of “the grace of God” for today.
“… There is none righteous, no, not one:” (Romans 3:10)
“For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23)
“… while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.” (Romans 5:8b)
“Christ died for our sins” (I Cor. 15:3)
“by Him (Christ) all who believe are justified (counted righteous)” (Acts 13:39).
“… a man is justified by faith (trust in Christ alone) without the deeds of “the Law” (Rom. 3:28).
“For BY GRACE ARE YE SAVED THROUGH FAITH; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: 9 NOT OF WORKS, lest any man should boast.” (Ephesians 2:8-9)
“Believe on (trust in, cling to, rely upon) the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved” (Acts 16:31).