Living Under Grace Not Law

A dramatic illustration of the law and grace doctrine can be seen in the story of the slave auctions in old New Orleans a long time ago. Two planters were bidding for an old Negro slave who constantly shouted his rebellion from the auction block. One of the planters finally won the bid and took the slave in his wagon back to the farm. Throughout the journey the defiant Negro slave declared that he would not work for his new owner. On arrival at the plantation, the planter dropped the shackles from the newly bought slave and said, “You are free to go. You are no longer a slave. I bought you in order to give you your liberty.” According to the story, the old man fell at the feet of the planter and said, “Master, I will serve you forever.

In the same manner, we were all held in the bondage of sin, condemnation and death. Christ then paid the price to secure our freedom from that hopeless slavery. Lovingly He tells us that the reason He made the sacrifice was to set us free. So what should our response to Jesus Christ be? Every ransomed child of God should fall at His feet and say, “Master, I love you for what you did for me. I will serve you the rest of my life.

Think it through for just a moment. Jesus had to die because the Ten Commandments law had been broken and sin demanded death. If the law could have been abrogated, the penalty of sin would have been set aside also. “For where no law is, there is no transgression.” Romans 4:15. So strong is the authority of that unchangeable Ten Commandments law that God Himself could not abolish it; not even to save His own Son from death.

Another old story of two brothers is almost a perfect illustration of both law and grace in operation. The older brother was a judge and his younger brother was brought before him as a transgressor of the law. From all the evidence it was clear to everyone that he was guilty and the court atmosphere was tense. Would the judge mete out justice in such a case? The judge looked at his brother and sternly declared him guilty. Then he stunned the court by imposing the maximum fine. But immediately he left the bench and threw his arms around his brother and said, “I had to do it because you are guilty. I know you cannot pay the fine, but I will pay it for you.

The point of the story is dramatic in its impact. The brother was forgiven but the penalty was not. It had to be paid. But by paying the maximum penalty, the judge not only did not abolish the law, but he greatly magnified it. He demonstrated that its binding claims could never be voided. In the same sense, God would not and could not abolish the Ten Commandments law to save His own beloved Son. It cost something to uphold the law and pay the maximum penalty. No one will ever know how much it cost the Son of God. But how thankful we should be that His love was as perfect as His justice. In His own body He bore the penalty, satisfied the law and justified the transgressor.

Can you see that no greater demonstration could have been made to prove the permanence of the Ten Commandments? In the entire universe God could not have displayed a more convincing and irrefutable argument in favour of His Ten Commandment law. Yet, in the face of this tremendous exhibition, misguided millions of poor, feeble men belittle the government of God by belittling His law. They seem not to understand that the Ten Commandments are only a reflection of His holiness and righteousness. To speak of the abolition of the Ten Commandments is to border on treason against the divine government of heaven.

Look into that holy law right now for a divine revelation of what God wants your life to be. Confess that you have no strength to live up to that perfect standard. Then turn your eyes to the only One who has kept that Ten Commandments law perfectly and who desires this very moment to enter your life with enabling power. He will fulfil the righteousness of the law; the just requirements of the law in you, so that you can say with Paul, “Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me.” Galatians 2:20.

The Ten Commandments - Page 7 - Conclusion