The Law is for sinners

Yesterday I wrote about Hebrews 7:18  where we saw that the Law is not for believers in Jesus but for sinners. God told us that He has put the Law aside(abolished it)  bringing in a better hope for the Law of Moses made nobody perfect, however Grace does. Many Christians are taught the Law so as to keep it. All this will do is ensure that they stay under the dominion of sin and death.
Today I want to look at 1Timothy chapter 1 to see what more Paul teaches about the Law and Grace. I use the New King James Version  mostly when I am using e-sword.


 
1Ti 1:1 Paul, an apostle of Jesus Christ, by the commandment of God our Savior and the Lord Jesus Christ, our hope,
1Ti 1:2 To Timothy, a true son in the faith: Grace, mercy, and peace from God our Father and Jesus Christ our Lord.
1Ti 1:3 As I urged you when I went into Macedonia—remain in Ephesus that you may charge some that they teach no other doctrine,
1Ti 1:4 nor give heed to fables and endless genealogies, which cause disputes rather than godly edification which is in faith.
1Ti 1:5 Now the purpose of the commandment is love from a pure heart, from a good conscience, and from sincere faith,
1Ti 1:6 from which some, having strayed, have turned aside to idle talk,
1Ti 1:7 desiring to be teachers of the law, understanding neither what they say nor the things which they affirm.
1Ti 1:8 But we know that the law is good if one uses it lawfully,
1Ti 1:9 knowing this: that the law is not made for a righteous person, but for the lawless and insubordinate, for the ungodly and for sinners, for the unholy and profane, for murderers of fathers and murderers of mothers, for manslayers,
1Ti 1:10 for fornicators, for sodomites, for kidnappers, for liars, for perjurers, and if there is any other thing that is contrary to sound doctrine,
1Ti 1:11 according to the glorious gospel of the blessed God which was committed to my trust.
1Ti 1:18 This charge I commit to you, son Timothy, according to the prophecies previously made concerning you, that by them you may wage the good warfare,
1Ti 1:19 having faith and a good conscience, which some having rejected, concerning the faith have suffered shipwreck,
1Ti 1:20 of whom are Hymenaeus and Alexander, whom I delivered to Satan that they may learn not to blaspheme.


In this passage Paul lays out many things against those who are going astray and  he uses words like: charge, commandment, law, lawfully, command. We are normally told that Paul is exhorting us to keep with the old testament commandments but it is the opposite that Paul is teaching to believers. Let’s look into this chapter to see what is going on…
Verse 1: “The commandment of God…” epitagē
Thayer Definition:
1) an injunction, mandate, command

Paul, an apostle of Jesus Christ, by the commandment of God our Savior and the Lord Jesus Christ, our hope,

This word is only used 7 times and is not speaking about the ten commandments or the Law of Moses but the personal charge or mandate given to Paul by Jesus when He called Paul to turn the hearts of the people from the power of Satan. Here is that charge or epitage given to Paul.

Act 26:17 I will deliver you from the Jewish people, as well as from the Gentiles, to whom I now send you,
Act 26:18 to open their eyes, in order to turn them from darkness to light, and from the power of Satan to God, that they may receive forgiveness of sins and an inheritance among those who are sanctified by faith in Me.’

Even here in this commandment(epitage) given to Paul, straight away we see that people are made holy(sanctified) by faith in Jesus and NOT by the works of the Law.
I underlined each part of the charge above.
Paul was given a commandment(epitage) to open their eyes; to turn them from Satan; so they can receive forgiveness;so they can receive the inheritance; so they can believe and be made holy. So that is the first word translated as commandment or command(KJV) in this chapter. It is a personal charge or mandate of Paul’s calling to the Gentiles. The means of doing for doing it is by preaching the gospel of grace.


In verse 3 and 4 Paul tells Timothy to charge  some people to stop preaching aspects of the Mosaic law.
This is παραγγέλλω
paraggellō
Thayer Definition:
1) to transmit a message along from one to another, to declare, announce
2) to command, order, charge

1Ti 1:3 As I urged you when I went into Macedonia—remain in Ephesus that you may charge some that they teach no other doctrine,
1Ti 1:4 nor give heed to fables and endless genealogies, which cause disputes rather than godly edification which is in faith.

The command Timothy was given was that the people preaching other doctrines which Paul did not introduce to them through Timothy would stop. Paul was given the Gospel of Grace to preach as the commandment of the Lord.
Paul contrasts what these teachers taught and the results of their teaching with the outcome of teaching his doctrine of grace. He tells Timothy to charge them to only teach grace through faith. Teaching anything else “will cause disputes rather than godly edification which is in faith.” 


 
In verse 5 Paul uses a the word παραγγελία
paraggelia
Thayer Definition:
1) announcement, a proclaiming or giving a message to
2) a charge, a command

1Ti 1:5 Now the purpose of the commandment is love from a pure heart, from a good conscience, and from sincere faith,
1Ti 1:6 from which some, having strayed, have turned aside to idle talk,
1Ti 1:7 desiring to be teachers of the law, understanding neither what they say nor the things which they affirm.

Many times I have heard preachers and pastors use this verse to say that people are turning away from the Law of Moses. Nothing could be further from the meaning here.

This commandment Paul is speaking about is not the Law of Moses but the Gospel of Grace revealed to Paul as Christ in us the hope of glory.

Preachers warn the congregation not to stray and turn away from the commandments. But Paul is not referring to the Law of Moses but his Gospel calling, the charge given to him by Jesus Himself which we saw in verse one.
The purpose of the Gospel – the commandment given to Paul and told him in Acts 26:17,18 “is love from a pure heart, from a good conscience, and from sincere faith,” Only the sacrifice of Jesus Christ our perfect Passover Lamb can make the conscience perfect. The Law can not do it. It is by believing in His sacrifice and appropriating it to ourselves that we receive Him who is our love, our holiness and our faith.


In verse 7 Paul says that these ones who were straying from his Gospel given to him as a charge from Jesus were desiring to be teachers of the Law – νομοδιδάσκαλος
nomodidaskalos
Thayer Definition:
1) a teacher and interpreter of the law: among the Jews
1a) of those who among Christians went about as champions and interpreters of the Mosaic law

1Ti 1:7 desiring to be teachers of the law, understanding neither what they say nor the things which they affirm.

Here is the first time in this chapter that Paul is actually speaking about the Old Testament Law of Moses which he knew so well as a former Pharisee. Preachers and pastors use this chapter to beat people over the head with the Law to keep them under it but it is actually about Paul exhorting Timothy and these law preachers to stay in the charge given to him by the revelation of Jesus Christ.
They were desiring to be teachers of the Law of Moses!! Paul was a skilled teacher of the Law of Moses BEFORE he repented and came to faith in Messiah Jesus. God Himself called Paul out of that to teach the GOSPEL OF GRACE! The Law is good but it is useless to make a man more loving, more pure, or to give him faith. All who trust in the Law shall be ashamed for they cannot keep the Law perfectly enough to satisfy the Law giver. Even Moses himself failed to keep the law and did not inherit the Promised land. That is what the Law does…it will disinherit all who try to live by it. That is why God says they shall be ashamed who do not believe in Jesus to save and qualify them.

Rom 10:11 For the Scripture says, “WHOEVER BELIEVES ON HIM WILL NOT BE PUT TO SHAME.”
Rom 10:12 For there is no distinction between Jew and Greek, for the same Lord over all is rich to all who call upon Him.
Rom 10:13 For “WHOEVER CALLS ON THE NAME OF THE LORD SHALL BE SAVED.”

Even here in the verse above we see that Jews and Gentiles must call upon Jesus to be saved and to receive the inheritance. Jews cannot be saved any other way. Not by being a natural Jew or by keeping Moses Law which they do not do anyway. Yet what do we hear in the churches today? We are told that Jews are under another Covenant and are saved under that. That is an absolute denial of the Gospel of Jesus. There is ONLY ONE COVENANT by which a man, Jew or Gentile must be saved. It is the New covenant that God made with the house of Israel spoken of in Jeremiah 31:31 and mediated by Jesus Christ the Lamb of God.
Back to 1 Timothy to see the usage of the Law.

1Ti 1:8 But we know that the law is good if one uses it lawfully, 

νόμος
nomos
Thayer Definition:
1) anything established, anything received by usage, a custom, a law, a command
1a) of any law whatsoever
1a1) a law or rule producing a state approved of God
Paul begins to explain the beneficial(good) use of the Law for a preacher under Grace. The Law must be used lawfully.
What does Paul mean by, use the Law lawfully?
Just what I have been saying. Here is what it does not mean first.
If you are a believer in Jesus Christ that means you died to the Law’s dominion over you. You are dead to the Law and alive to God. For you to try to keep the Law is like a dead man trying to live. Your Old man was the Law keeping man and he was put to death in Jesus.
It would be an unlawful use of the Law to try to apply it to the New Creation that you already are through faith in Jesus Christ. You have been perfected by Grace so why go backwards to try to perfect by Law what is already done?
I will continue with this passage in the next post. Just know that it is by the Grace of God that one is filled with love, obtains a pure heart and sincere faith. The Law of Moses cannot do that.
 
 
 
 

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