“Kept Under Law”
Sabbath School Lesson 2017 Quarter 3 Lesson 7 Monday
What does it mean to be kept under the written law? The lesson suggests a couple of meanings:
1. an alternate way of salvation by keeping the rules—but the Bible makes it clear this is impossible
2. being under its condemnation—read second paragraph,
““Under the law” includes being under its condemnation (Rom. 6:14, 15). Because the law cannot atone for sin, the violation of its demands ultimately results in condemnation. This is the condition in which all human beings find themselves. The law acts as a prison warden, locking up all who have violated it and brought upon themselves the sentence of death. As we will see in tomorrow’s study, the use of the word guard (Gal. 3:23, NKJV) indicates that this is what Paul means by “under the law” in this passage.”
Do you like the second view? Is there another view?
Yes the written law is a gift to function like a diagnostic instrument and protective hedge and a guidepost. It diagnosis what is wrong to bring us to realize we are dying and need external help, it protects us from further self-injury, and leads us back to Christ who can heal us.
We are not under condemnation because of the written law—we are under condemnation because of the terminal condition with which we were born.
The written law merely diagnosis what is already true in us. This is why Paul writes in Romans 5:12- 14
Therefore, just as sin entered the world through one man, and death through sin, and in this way death came to all men, because all sinned— 13 for before the law was given, sin was in the world. But sin is not taken into account when there is no law. 14 Nevertheless, death reigned from the time of Adam to the time of Moses, even over those who did not sin by breaking a command, as did Adam, who was a pattern of the one to come.
From The Remedy:
Therefore, the infection of distrust of God—which deformed humanity’s heart and mind with selfishness and fear, and which results only in death—infected the human race when Adam accepted Satan’s lies about God and broke trust with him. This infection of fear and selfishness is inherited by all human beings, so all are born infected.13This is revealed by the fact that before the written law was given, the infection of distrust, fear and selfishness was already present in the world. But this infection of distrust, fear and selfishness is not diagnosable without the law.14Nevertheless, even without being diagnosed as infected with this terminal condition, humans still died, all the way from the time of Adam to Moses–even those who did not break a specific command, like Adam did–revealing that the problem is the infected state of our minds and not a legal issue with God. Adam, the first man, being the conduit through which the infection entered humanity, also represents the one man who is the conduit of the antidote that cures all those who accept it.
This from one of the founders of our church, Patriarchs and Prophets chapter 32.
Before reading, let’s establish this word precepts, means instructions and the hebrew word for english translated commandments also means instructions.
The term “Torah” means instruction and offers a way of life for those who follow it;
Adam and Eve, at their creation, had a knowledge of the law of God; they were acquainted with its claims upon them; its precepts were written upon their hearts. When man fell by transgression the law was not changed, but a remedial system was established to bring him back to obedience. The promise of a Saviour was given, and sacrificial offerings pointing forward to the death of Christ as the great sin offering were established. But had the law of God never been transgressed, there would have been no death, and no need of a Saviour; consequently there would have been no need of sacrifices.
Adam taught his descendants the law of God, and it was handed down from father to son through successive generations. But notwithstanding the gracious provision for man’s redemption, there were few who accepted it and rendered obedience. By transgression the world became so vile that it was necessary to cleanse it by the Flood from its corruption. The law was preserved by Noah and his family, and Noah taught his descendants the Ten Commandments. As men again departed from God, the Lord chose Abraham, of whom He declared, “Abraham obeyed My voice, and kept My charge, My commandments, My statutes, and My laws.” Genesis 26:5. To him was given the rite of circumcision, which was a sign that those who received it were devoted to the service of God—a pledge that they would remain separate from idolatry, and would obey the law of God. The failure of Abraham’s descendants to keep this pledge, as shown in their disposition to form alliances with the heathen and adopt their practices, was the cause of their sojourn and bondage in Egypt. But in their intercourse with idolaters, and their forced submission to the Egyptians, the divine precepts became still further corrupted with the vile and cruel teachings of heathenism. Therefore [p. 364] when the Lord brought them forth from Egypt, He came down upon Sinai, enshrouded in glory and surrounded by His angels, and in awful majesty spoke His law in the hearing of all the people.
He did not even then trust His precepts to the memory of a people who were prone to forget His requirements, but wrote them upon tables of stone. He would remove from Israel all possibility of mingling heathen traditions with His holy precepts, or of confounding His requirements with human ordinances or customs. But He did not stop with giving them the precepts of the Decalogue. The people had shown themselves so easily led astray that He would leave no door of temptation unguarded. Moses was commanded to write, as God should bid him, judgments and laws giving minute instruction as to what was required. These directions relating to the duty of the people to God, to one another, and to the stranger were only the principles of the Ten Commandments amplified and given in a specific manner, that none need err. They were designed to guard the sacredness of the ten precepts engraved on the tables of stone.
If man had kept the law of God, as given to Adam after his fall, preserved by Noah, and observed by Abraham, there would have been no necessity for the ordinance of circumcision. And if the descendants of Abraham had kept the covenant, of which circumcision was a sign, they would never have been seduced into idolatry, nor would it have been necessary for them to suffer a life of bondage in Egypt; they would have kept God’s law in mind, and there would have been no necessity for it to be proclaimed from Sinai or engraved upon the tables of stone. And had the people practiced the principles of the Ten Commandments, there would have been no need of the additional directions given to Moses.
If interested to follow our Sabbath School Lesson 2017 commentary online at Facebook, you may do so here;
Sabbathschoolquarterly.com is an independent ministry and is not part of, affiliated with, or supported by the General Conference of Seventh-day Adventists®, or any affiliates known as the Seventh-day Adventist® Church. Thus, any content or opinions expressed, implied or included in or with the use of the Sabbath School Quarterly offered by sabbathschoolquarterly.com are solely those of sabbathschoolquarterly.com and not those of the Seventh-day Adventist® Church.