Part 14 of 17 -
Comparing “The Law” with “The Pure Grace”
of Paul’s Mystery Gospel
“Pure grace” is a term that I use to express the matter of 100% grace under the “dispensation of the grace of God.” This grace is clearly seen as being pure or 100% in this verse. Romans 11:6a And if by grace, then is it no more of works (0% works)… But if it be of works, then is it no more grace…. Do you see it? Grace must be 100% or it is not really grace.
In one sense God has always met man by grace. Even under the Law there was a measure of grace as it were. After all, it was only the animal that died in the prescribed sacrifices made by believing Israelites to cover their sins under The Law. But note that there was an external work requirement for it to work; this is faith plus works.
With Abraham, his “faith” alone (Rom 4:5-6) “was counted as righteousness”; this was before The Law. With respect to faith as the single requirement, our relationship with God today is as Abraham’s. We have faith in God’s provision of Christ’s blood sacrifice for our sins and for our reconciliation with God. We have faith in Christ’s cross-work that brings us into right relationship with God, by which we enjoy the riches of the indwelling life of the resurrected Lord.
Under the grace gospel, God requires faith alone, without works. Ephesians 2:8-9 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. Both the grace and the faith are “NOT of ourselves” – they are “the gift of God.”
Paul confirms this complete gifting we have received from God in Gal 2:20b saying, now we “live by the faith of (Gk. ek, from and with) the Son of God.” – Christ with His faith has been deposited into us.
The requisites of the written Law, with its externalities, are not applicable under “the dispensation of the grace of God.” Colossians 2:14-15 Blotting out the handwriting of ordinances that was against us, which was contrary to us, and took it out of the way, nailing it to his cross;
Again, it is by studying these dispensational contrasts that we heighten our awareness of the riches (Eph 1:7, 18) of “the mystery” under “dispensation of the grace of God,” given to Paul for us.
Now consider these few examples to see our freedom from The Law, as we live by grace through faith alone.
1) Earlier, in Part 8, we noted that the keeping of the Sabbath is one of the Ten Commandments. If one defiled the Sabbath, the Law called for stoning to death. Yet, Paul tells the Gentiles the Sabbath is inapplicable as a law to be followed under the grace gospel. Colossians 2:16 Let no man therefore judge you in meat, or in drink, or in respect of an holyday, or of the new moon, or of the sabbath days:
2) Jesus heightened the “Law” to the Jews, saying things such as, “if a man looks upon a woman with lust in his heart he has already committed adultery” (paraphrased). Earlier, in Part 12, we noted that Jesus told the Jews they must first forgive others first in order to be forgiven by God. Thus, “The Law” dispensation continued in force and was heightened with Jesus’ teaching. This is so until Stephen was stoned in Acts 7, and Paul was saved in Acts 9 and given the…pure grace gospel. Paul says, under the grace gospel we forgive because we have already been forgiven “freely.”
Eph 4:32 be ye kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ's sake hath (already, past tense) forgiven you. Col. 3:13 Forbearing one another, and forgiving one another, if any man have a quarrel against any: even as Christ forgave (already, past tense) you, so also do ye.
3) Consider also the matter of “the remission of sins,” as was preached by Peter at Pentecost to “Ye men of
” (not the Gentiles). Peter’s preaching confirms that “The Law” and works were still in effect during that time. This is the case until Paul was saved and received “the gospel of the grace of God” from Christ for us. Peter at Pentecost preached the requirement that a Jew must “repent and be baptized (in water)” for “the remission of sins” and to “receive the gift of Holy Spirit.” Acts 2:38 Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost. Israel
Contrast Peter’s message to
on the day of Pentecost, above, with the grace of the mystery gospel, where Paul says we have remission of sins through faith in Christ’s blood. Israel
Romans 3:25 Whom (Jesus) God hath set forth to be a propitiation through faith in his (Jesus’) blood, to declare his righteousness for the remission of sins that are past, through the forbearance of God; Here Paul says remission of sins is by faith alone. We may also note that receiving the Holy Spirit is again by faith alone.
Galatians 3:14 That the blessing of Abraham might come on the Gentiles through Jesus Christ; that we might receive the promise of the Spirit through faith.
Faith alone, apart from the works of “The Law,” is the only requisite for enjoying the grace of God under the mystery gospel of “the grace of God.” “…by grace are ye saved through faith…not of works…” (Eph 2:8-9).
The hopelessness of meeting “Law-keeping and works” requirement is clearly seen in the following verses.
Galatians 3:10-14 (AMP) And all who depend on the Law [who are seeking to be justified by obedience to the Law of rituals] are under a curse and doomed to disappointment and destruction, for it is written in the Scriptures, Cursed (accursed, doomed to eternal punishment) be everyone who does not continue to abide (live) by all the precepts and commands written in the Book of the Law and to practice them...
Do you see it? The curse of The Law is that you must keep it all, which is impossible. James confirms this when he writes to
’s “the twelve tribes which are scattered abroad (James 1:1b).” James 2:10 For whosoever shall keep the whole law (100%), and yet offend in one point (even 1%), he is guilty of all. So, if one at all depends upon keeping even just some of The Law in the hope of gaining right standing with God, then they are doomed, cursed to keep it all, and they will fail. I say “they will fail” because Paul says it is “The Law” that actually empowers the Sin nature in man’s flesh. 1 Corinthians 15:56b the strength (Gk. dunamis, power) of sin is the law. Israel
Let’s now continue with Galatians 3:10-14 to see how “grace through faith, not of works” is absolutely versus “keeping The Law” with its works requirements.
Galatians 3:10-14 (AMP) (continued)… 11Now it is evident that no person is justified (declared righteous and brought into right standing with God) through the Law, for the Scripture says, The man in right standing with God [the just, the righteous] shall live by and out of faith and he who through and by faith is declared righteous and in right standing with God shall live.
12 But the Law does not rest on faith [does not require faith, has nothing to do with faith], for it itself says, He who does them [the things prescribed by the Law] shall live by them [not by faith].
13 Christ purchased our freedom [redeeming us] from the curse (doom) of the Law [and its condemnation] by [Himself] becoming a curse for us, for it is written [in the Scriptures], Cursed is everyone who hangs on a tree (is crucified); 14 To the end that through [their receiving] Christ Jesus, the blessing [promised] to Abraham might come upon the Gentiles, so that we through faith might [all] receive [the realization of] the promise of the [Holy] Spirit.