Should We Try to Keep the Ten Commandments?
Traditional Christian church tenants that are constantly mixing law and grace have led to a mixed message that lacks consistency when it comes to sound doctrine. Unfortunately, this has become the rule and not the exception among the religious wolves. Their members become unsuspecting prey, not realizing they are being held as hostages, all in the name of what they falsely assume to be absolute truth.
The confusion between law and grace stems from mixing portions of the (obsolete) Old Covenant law of works, and pouring it into the same blender with the grace found in the current New Covenant of Jesus Christ. This causes a clash or conflict, due to attempting to combine two separate and very different covenants together.
There are numerous questions that we can ask a particular member of the flock in order to confirm whether or not they are a legalistic victim. Here’s one from the top of the list: “Do you think we should attempt to live by and keep the Ten Commandments?” Hostages and victims of the Christian religion will shout and scream accusations of heresy, blasphemy, and apostasy for anyone who might answer “no” to that question. Why? Because sadly, they haven’t been made aware of why the law was given to Israel, and why God replaced all of the law and commandments from a temporary covenant, with a better and permanent arrangement (or covenant) which has been established upon better promises. While ignorantly pointing judgmental fingers with accusations of hyper-grace, their desire to be teachers of “some” of the law exposes them as ministers who do not understand what they are talking about (see Timothy 1:6-7). The law was not made for the righteous in Christ Jesus.
Covenant clashing ministers will sound the alarm that we grace renegades are suggesting to go ahead and commit whatever sins you want. This is not at all what we’re saying, but they can’t help to make this misguided assumption because of the legalistic mindset by which they filter everything through. Just because we don’t attempt to keep the stone commandments doesn’t mean we’re breaking them or seeking to do so.
Don’t miss this: Here’s a key piece of information that probably got skimmed over during all of those Sunday sermons over the years: You can’t eliminate certain portions of the law while holding onto other parts. All 613 commands and statues came together as a package that can never be broken up. Nobody is permitted to add anything to the law or take away from it (See Deuteronomy 4:2, 12:32; Joshua 1:7). This includes the Ten Commandments, sacrificial laws, dietary laws, etc. When you see a reference to the law in any part of the Scripture, it’s not referring to ceremonial practices only, but the moral statutes as well.
Ask a “Christian law advocate” if they are keeping all of the top 10. Nobody (none) can honestly give an affirmative answer. The typical response is something like, “I’m trying.” According to the law itself (not to mention Jesus), that’s not good enough, no matter how sincere your effort may be. Therefore, the law that came through Moses within the first covenant—all of it—had to come to an end in order for the New Covenant to take effect. We can’t pick and choose what should be thrown out, while trying to keep other commands intact. It all had to be thrown out and put aside in order for something new and better to take effect. A complete change of law occurred when Jesus became the High Priest, which occurred “after the law” (see Hebrews 7).
Having said that, keep in mind the law was never given to us who are Gentiles, but it was given only to Israel—those born of the Jewish race. We Gentiles weren’t invited into the previous covenant, and that old law is not part of the New Covenant of Jesus Christ. He would be the replacement!
Let’s look at some references frequently ignored or overlooked by covenant clashers. Below are just a few samples of why we should no longer be trying to abide by a handwriting of requirements contained in any of the law that came through Moses. Instead, we abide in the Spirit of Grace, who empowers us from within to live Godly lives (see Titus 2:11-12). But Christ has already fulfilled the law on our behalf. Refer to this list whenever temptation seeks to entice you back into a lifeless written code of human morality that is constantly changing and always falling short.
- The law demands perfection, but makes nothing perfect (Matthew 5:48; Hebrews 7:19).
- The law was a yoke of bondage the Jews were unable to bear, and the church in Jerusalem agreed with the apostles not to thrust it upon the Gentiles (Acts 15:10).
- We are justified and made righteous by faith, apart from the law (Romans 3:21, 28).
- The law came not to reduce sin, but to increase sin (Romans 5:20).
- We are not under law, but under grace (Romans 6:14).
- We are dead to the law and freed from the law (Romans 7:4, 6).
- Sinful passions are aroused by the law and will bear fruit for death (Romans 7:5).
- The commandment resulted in more sinning, not less. But apart from the law sin is dead (Romans 7: 7-10).
- Christ has set us free from the law of sin and death to serve in the newness of the Spirit (Romans 7:6, 8:2).
- Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to all who believe (Romans 10:4).
- The power of sin is the law (1 Corinthians 15:56).
- The law, including the (10) commandments written on stone, is described as the ministry of death and condemnation … and no longer has glory (2 Corinthians 3:7-11).
- Pursuing the law of works is walking in the flesh (Galatians 3:3).
- The law is not of faith (Galatians 3:12).
- Christ came to redeem from the curse of the law (Galatians 3:10-13).
- No law is able to provide us with life or righteousness (Galatians 3:21-22).
- The law was a tutor to point people to a Savior, but now that faith has come, we are no longer under the tutor (Galatians 3:24-25).
- The (10) Commandments given on Mt. Sinai gave birth to bondage or slavery (Galatians 3:24).
- Abiding by any of the law leads to falling from grace (Galatians 5:3-4).
- If you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the law (Galatians 5:18).
- The law does not produce the fruit of the Spirit (Galatians 5:22-23).
- Christ broke down the dividing wall—the law of commandments (Ephesians 2:14-16).
- The law was nailed to the cross (Colossians 3:13-14).
- The law is not made for the righteous in Christ (1 Timothy 1:5-9).
- If the old law is still in place, Jesus is not a legitimate High Priest (Hebrews 7:12-14).
- The former commandment (law) was set aside (abolished) because it was weak and useless (Hebrews 7:18-19).
- Because it’s a package deal, whoever keeps the whole law but stumbles at one point is guilty of breaking all of it (Galatians 5:3; James 2:10).
“I do not nullify the grace of God, for if righteousness comes through the Law, then Christ died needlessly” (Galatians 2:21).
For more on the teachings of Jesus from a New Covenant perspective, and avoiding the trap of religious bondage, get the book: Clash of the Covenants: Escaping Religious Bondage Through The Grace Guarantee Find It Here On Amazon