Wednesday: Law and Faith

As we saw yesterday, Paul showed that God’s dealings with Abraham proved that salvation comes through the promise of grace and not through law. Therefore, if the Jews wished to be saved, they would have to abandon trust in their works for salvation and accept the Abrahamic promise, now fulfilled in the coming of the Messiah.

Law and Faith

Image © Lars Justinin

It’s the same, really, for everyone, Jew or Gentile, who thinks that their “good” deeds are all that it takes to make them right with God.

“The principle that man can save himself by his own works lay at the foundation of every heathen religion. . . . Wherever it is held, men have no barrier against sin.” – Ellen G. White, The Desire of Ages, pp. 35, 36. What does this mean? Why does the idea that we can save ourselves through our works leave us so open to sin?

How did Paul explain the relationship between law and faith in Galatians? Gal. 3:21-23.

If there had been a law that could impart life, it certainly would have been God’s law. And yet, Paul says that no law can give life, not even God’s, because all have violated that law, and so all are condemned by it.

But the promise of faith, more fully revealed through Christ, frees all who believe from being “under the law”; that is, from being condemned and burdened by trying to earn salvation through it. The law becomes a burden when it’s presented without faith, without grace, because without faith, without grace, without the righteousness that comes by faith, being under the law means being under the burden and the condemnation of sin.

How central is righteousness by faith to your walk with God? That is, what can you do to make sure it doesn’t get blurred by other aspects of truth to the point where you lose sight of this crucial teaching? After all, what good are these other teachings without this one?

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Source: Daily Sabbath School Lessons