Thursday, October 09, 2008

What Does "Under the Law" Mean?

A Question found in MennoDiscuss: "What does Paul mean when he says 'under the law' as in 'you are not under the law, but under grace.'?"

The way I understand it, "under the law" refers to being under the law of Moses as an authority. Paul is saying that to be in Christ, one needs not be of the ancient Jewish Temple system.

Some applications of this:
a. There is NOONE "under the law" in our modern age as there was before 70AD. The ancient temple system with it's distinct Jewish perspective no longer exists.

b. However, this does not mean that we don't deal with the same issues. Many people feel that to be a Christian one must also be under the authority of something else: a particular denomination, a particular non-Jesus theology, a particular cultural habit, a particular politcal party, a particular natinality, etc.

c. Paul affirms that it is only Jesus that saves, not anything else. Only Jesus' law, not any other law. Only Jesus' grace, not any other grace. Only Jesus' government, not any other. Only Jesus' politics, not any other. Only Jesus' hope, not any other dream, American or otherwise.

A dialogue I wrote on the subject could be found here: ... ation.html

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