Posts tagged ‘the Moral Law of God’

Anxiety Vs the Fear of the Lord!

Anxiousness has a very different meaning in today’s society. The word anxious however comes from the word anxiety which is defined as “distress or uneasiness of mind caused by the fear of anticipated danger or misfortune”. Anxiousness is something we all have to deal with in some form or the other, we may react to it differently but none of us escape it. One may react to anxiousness with rage while another may react to it with alcohol; the fallen man attempts to mitigate anxiety always with either: Pride, Pleasure or Power (1 John 2:16) or a combination of these.

1 John 2
16 For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh and the lust of the eyes and the boastful pride of life, is not from the Father, but is from the world.

Such anxiety stems from Adam because by nature we have a law (of flesh) at work in us which is different from the Law of God (Rom 7:23). This anxiety we suffer is the result of broken communion with God. All suffering in this world is what God has ordained according to His purpose. Anxiety on the other hand stems from seeing God’s hand at work in creation as something totally hopeless. Anxiety is an ungodly and unholy fear because it fears ‘trusting in the good Lord’ rather than fearing God. Anxiety by nature distrust God but the ‘fear of the Lord’ on the other hand trusts God and is obedient to His Law even in the face of death. For the ‘fear of the Lord’ grants the believer the wisdom to fear Him who can destroy body and soul for eternity (Mat 10:28) as over men’s circumstances (Isaiah 51:7), which at most can only action death.

Psalms 111
10 The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom; A good understanding have all those who do His commandments; His praise endures forever.

Proverbs 15
16 Better is a little with the fear of the LORD Than great treasure and turmoil with it.

Psalms 34
11 Come, you children, listen to me; I will teach you the fear of the LORD.

Hence we see that there is such a thing as holy and unholy fear, where holy fear (fear of the Lord) constitutes that of a servant acting in obedience to His Master even in the face of death for that servant knows His Masters commandments and so serves His Master in total humility because to that servant his duty to His Master outweighs his humans concerns. We therefore see that it is in this state of holy fear that the servant’s life is practically trusting God.

Having explained the difference between the ‘fear of the Lord’ and Anxiety, what remains to the said is that one can never know the ‘fear of the Lord’ without knowing about the ‘Moral Law of God’ and if that person does not know God’s Moral Holy Law then that person has not witnessed the Salvation that is of Christ (Mat 7:23).

Isaiah 41
10 ‘Do not fear, for I am with you; Do not anxiously look about you, for I am your God. I will strengthen you, surely I will help you, Surely I will uphold you with My righteous right hand.’

Philippians 4
6 Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God.

Anxiety is something we can only cast on the Lord Jesus Christ, who is seated at the right hand of the God the Father. This is the grace (unmerited favor) God grants the believer, because natural man’s communion with God is broken, he is spiritually dead since Adam (Gen 2:17) and hence restoring this communion can never be the onus of man who is spiritually dead but only of God who is life (John 11:25). This precisely is what Jesus did on the cross; He became that sinless sacrifice substituting the believer with Himself to receive the full wrath of God i.e. to pay the full price sin because man fell short of the glory of God.

Rom 3
21 But now apart from the Law righteousness of God has been manifested, being witnessed by the Law and the Prophets,
22 even the righteousness of God through faith in Jesus Christ for all those who believe; for there is no distinction;
23 for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God,
24 being justified as a gift by His grace through the redemption which is in Christ Jesus;

31 Do we then nullify the Law through faith? May it never be! On the contrary, we establish the Law.

What we notice from the above scripture is that Godly righteousness is given to the believer through Jesus Christ. It is in the Lord Jesus Christ that a person is granted a spirit of obedience (Romans 16:25-26) and thus establish the Moral Law as though it were written on his/her heart (Jer 31:33). When this Moral Law is established in our hearts, we then learn as though it were our instinct what Romans 8:28 teaches us even in our most difficult circumstances.

Rom 8
28 And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose.

Psalms 94
12 Blessed is the man whom You chasten, O LORD, And whom You teach out of Your law;

It is therefore only the Lord Jesus Christ in whom we can cast our anxiety through prayer and supplication and learn the Holy fear of God (2 Cor 5:10-11). I must state that though we are saved by grace through faith, when we appear before the judgment seat of Christ, we shall be judged by our deeds (James 2:17-20) because our deeds are the evidences of the grace we have received (1Cor 15:10). Yet we must know that though we are to be judged by our deeds on the Lord’s Day, our salvation is not from our own merit but from the merit of Christ. For it was on that cross that He purchased a Spirit of obedience for His people (Rev 5:9) and it was Him was spurned for our disobedience (Isaiah 53:5) that stemmed from the believers’ natural Adamic nature.

2 Kings
37 “The statutes and the ordinances and the law and the commandment which He wrote for you, you shall observe to do forever; and you shall not fear other gods.

39 “But the LORD your God you shall fear; and He will deliver you from the hand of all your enemies.”

Acts 9
31 Then had the churches rest throughout all Judaea and Galilee and Samaria, and were edified; and walking in the fear of the Lord, and in the comfort of the Holy Spirit, were multiplied.

To conclude, I must state Jesus’ teachings on anxiety in Mat 6:25-34 emphasizes on the Christian: the Law of God because it is in His Commandments (Moral Law) that we learn a structured approach to “Seek first the Kingdom of God and His righteousness” (Mat 6:33), which as stated in Mat 22:37-40 teaches the Christian that his first duty is to love God with all his heart, soul and mind, while his second duty remains to love his neighbor as himself.

The Law of sin and death vs the Law of the Spirit of Life

All creation lives under God and so there must be a rule to a way of life under God; even those who rebel against God follow a rule, which is their own (not of God). This precisely is the contrast between the Law of Sin and death and the Law of the Spirit of Life.

Romans 7
22 For I joyfully concur with the law of God in the inner man,
23 but I see a different law in the members of my body, waging war against the law of my mind and making me a prisoner of the law of sin which is in my members.
24 Wretched man that I am! Who will set me free from the body of this death?
25 Thanks be to God through Jesus Christ our Lord! So then, on the one hand I myself with my mind am serving the law of God, but on the other, with my flesh the law of sin.

One of the reasons why we all have different ideas on what’s right and what’s wrong is because from Adam we have received our own standard of knowledge concerning what is right and wrong (Gen 2:9,17) that is separate from the Law of God. Adam has given us all a nature of rebellion against God and we resort to it naturally. Many have gone under far deeper to recognize themselves as good people but in this they are only suppressing the truth in unrighteousness like a person trying to hold down a floating buoy.

Our nature to sin is the very fabric in the members of our body (flesh) and the Bible refers to it as the Law of Sin and Death. This may be merely observed in some people and rampant in many for the simple reason that God shed common grace on the wicked as He does on the righteous, making the rain fall and the sun shine on them both just the same. Through this common grace He restrains the wretch who is totally depraved from being utterly depraved thus withholding man from unleashing hell on earth.

The natural person is one who is prisoner to the law of sin and such a person will only recognize this by way of the Law of God, which stands white as snow as compared to the filthy rags of the law inherent and working in each person. It is this Law of God given by way of the Holy Spirit that exposes sin in the hearts of those who keep His Law; it shows the hopeless destructive state of man left to himself.

John 16
8 And He, when He comes, will convict the world concerning sin and righteousness and judgmen
t;

I wonder if a person who knows not his slavery to sin will ever know a Savior in Jesus Christ, who saves from sin!

Romans 8
2 For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has set you free from the law of sin and of death.

Romans 2
12 For all who have sinned without the Law will also perish without the Law, and all who have sinned under the Law will be judged by the Law;
13 for it is not the hearers of the Law who are just before God, but the doers of the Law will be justified

James 2
17 Even so faith, if it has no works, is dead, being by itself.

26 For just as the body without the spirit is dead, so also faith without works is dead.

If we look at James 2 and Romans 2 as mentioned above, we see that grace is in that we are given a spirit of obedience to the Law (Rom 15:18), which Christ purchased for us by His blood… complete Salvation for His people. The Holy Law of God is so critical to Christian life that it is referred to as the ‘measuring rod’ (Ezek 40:3-5; Rev 11:1; Rev 21:15) of God’s temple and city, who are his chosen people. Man was probably given two hands that he may hold the two great commandments of God Almighty, which are to love God above all things even himself and second to love his neighbor as himself. This Law just does not make sin known but also serves as the evidence of Christ work in the believer’s life. It thereby becomes the measure of holiness in the Christian’s life.

So since there is such a thing as the Law of God, there are also penalties for those who do not adhere to them, such may be observed as below.

Exodus 21
12 “He who strikes a man so that he dies shall surely be put to death.
13 “But if he did not lie in wait for him, but God let him fall into his hand, then I will appoint you a place to which he may flee.
14 “If, however, a man acts presumptuously toward his neighbor, so as to kill him craftily, you are to take him even from My altar, that he may die

The reason I sight these is to show that the blueprint for ecclesiastical as well as civil government for society has its foundation in the Bible and in many ways worldviews concerning these have been borrowed from the teachings of scripture. The reason people today want to do away with the Law of God is because even a whiff of His Holy Law gives them the taste of disgust which comes from the flesh and since man is self-centered since Adam, the last thing he will truly admit about himself is the wretched sinner he is before God. Add to all this the accountability required from the believer to face the repercussions of his actions makes for a Gospel from which the natural man would run away from.

However the Gospel bears the power of God therefore when the Father call His elect from language and nation unto Christ, these are brought to repentance by the Law of the Spirit Life who reveals unto the elect the futile law of natural man’s rebellion against God.

Romans 5 (Note: Grace did not substitute the Law but worked with the Law in saving the elect)
19 For as through the one man’s disobedience the many were made sinners, even so through the obedience of the One the many will be made righteous.
20 The Law came in so that the transgression would increase; but where sin increased, grace abounded all the more,
21 so that, as sin reigned in death, even so grace would reign through righteousness to eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.

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