The Bible indicates God has a government. Read Psalm 103:19. It is a recognized fact that intelligent human beings cannot live together in peace without a law acceptable to all.


Upon what principle are the laws of God’s government based?

Justice and judgment are the habitation of thy throne: mercy and truth shall go before thy face.”

Psalm 89:14.


How does Paul describe God’s law?

Wherefore the law is holy, and the commandment holy, and just, and good.”

Romans 7:12.


Who gave God’s law to man?

And God spake all these words, saying,”

Exodus 20:1.

Then follow the Ten Commandments in Verses 3-17.


Where did God write His law?

And the LORD spake unto you out of the midst of the fire: ye heard the voice of the words, but saw no similitude; only ye heard a voice. And he declared unto you his covenant, which he commanded you to perform, even ten commandments; and he wrote them upon two tables of stone.”

Deuteronomy 4:12, 13.

Read Nehemiah 9:13; Exodus 31:18.


Was God’s law known to Adam?

Speaking of Israel the prophet Hosea says, “But they like men have transgressed the covenant: there have they dealt treacherously against me.”

Hosea 6:7.

So, Israel, “like Adam” (margin) “have transgressed the covenant


Note: Since Paul mentions in Romans 7:7 that he would not have “known sin, but by the law” the same principle holds true with Adam. There would have been no sin on Adams part without a knowledge of the law. “For by the law is the knowledge of sin.” Romans 3:20.


What other evidence is there that God’s law existed and was known before Mount Sinai?

…by one man’s disobedience many were made sinners.”

Romans 5:19.


Note: There could have been no disobedience in Eden by Adam without a revelation of God’s law. According to 1 John 3:4 sin is the breaking of our disobedience to God’s law. Since it is true as Paul says that “by man came death” and “in Adam, all die

(1 Corinthians 15:21, 22) God’s law was in existence in the Garden of Eden.


How then was man aware of God’s law?

Which shew the work of the law written in their hearts, their conscience also bearing witness, and their thoughts the mean while accusing or else excusing one another.”

Romans 2:15.


Note: In the creation God wrote His law in man’s heart and for that reason it is referred to as the law of nature in Romans 2:14.


Who broke God’s law even before Adam?

He that committeth sin is of the devil; for the devil sinneth from the beginning. For this purpose the Son of God was manifested, that he might destroy the works of the devil.”

1 John 3:8, first part.

Also 2 Peter 2:4 speaks of “the angels that sinned.”



God created no one in sin. However, they were all beings with the power of choice. Ezekiel speaks of Satan, using the figure of the “King of Tyrus,” and says of him, “Thou wast perfect in thy ways from the day that thou wast created, till iniquity was found in thee.” Ezekiel 28:15. Jesus said of the devil that he “abode not in the truth.” John 8:44. So before disobedience there was obedience and if obedience then God’s law was known.






Obedience is always and everywhere the evidence of love and loyalty. Jesus said, “He that hath my commandments, and keepeth them, he it is that loveth me: and he that loveth me shall be loved of my Father, and I will love him, and will manifest myself to him.” John 14:21. Jesus came to this world to save us from sin. The angel said to Joseph, “And she shall bring forth a son, and thou shalt call his name JESUS: for he shall save his people from their sins.” Mathew 1:21.


To what is God’s law likened?

Wherefore the law was our schoolmaster to bring us unto Christ, that we might be justified by faith.”

Galatians 3:24.


Note: The law which Paul mentions here refers to the whole Jewish system. Therefore when he came to Verse 25, Paul is saying that no longer does Judaism function to point us to Christ – He has come! All of Israel’s laws – moral, ritual, etc. – had served to point them to the Messiah, but they rejected Him when he came.


What else is God’s law likened to?

For if any be a hearer of the word, and not a doer, he is like unto a man beholding his natural face in a glass: For he beholdeth himself, and goeth his way, and straightway forgetteth what manner of man he was. But whoso looketh into the perfect law of liberty, and continueth therein, he being not a forgetful hearer, but a doer of the work, this man shall be blessed in his deed.”

James 1:23-25.


Does the law reveal God’s will?

I delight to do thy will, O my God: yea, thy law is within my heart.”

Psalm 40:8.

Read Romans 2:16, 17.


Note: As Paul uses the term “end of the law” (Romans 10:4) he means aim or objective. The aim of the law or its objective is perfect obedience or righteousness. This the penitent sinner cannot render. But Christ achieves this aim or objective of the law for him who believes in Him. Believing in Christ, one is forgiven and accounted righteous.


Why is it necessary to receive the Spirit of Christ into the heart?

That the righteousness of the law might be fulfilled in us, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit.”

Romans 8:4.


How much of man’s duty is revealed by God’s law?

Let us hear the conclusion of the whole matter: Fear God, and keep his commandments: for this is the whole duty of man. For God shall bring every work into judgment, with every secret thing, whether it be good, or whether it be evil.”

Ecclesiastes 12:13, 14.


Does God’s law have anything to do with man’s conversion?

The law of the LORD is perfect, converting the soul: the testimony of the LORD is sure, making wise the simple.”

Psalm 19:7.


Note: The law has no power to pardon transgression. The law reveals sin and points a person to Christ. When a person gazes at the law, with the mind quickened by the convicting Spirit of God, he sees his defilement and is then in a frame of mind to listen to a message that offers cleansing through Christ.


What does God’s law have to do with the judgment?

It is the standard by which all are to be judged and for that reason James says, “So speak ye, and so do, as they that shall be judged by the law of liberty.”

James 2:12.

John says, “This is the love of God, that we keep his commandments.” 1 John 5:3.



The Bible mentions many blessings which attend those who give heed to God’s law. David says, “Moreover by them is thy servant warned: and in keeping of them there is great reward.” Psalm 19:11.The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom: a good understanding have all they that do his commandments: his praise endureth for ever.” Psalm 111:10. David’s decision relative to God’s law should be ours. Read Psalm 119:8.







God’s Ten Commandment law contains principles that are binding upon all peoples in all ages. “Wherefore the law is holy, and the commandment holy, and just, and good.” Romans 7:12.


For how long were God’s commandments established?

The works of his hands are verity and judgment; all his commandments are sure. They stand fast for ever and ever, and are done in truth and uprightness.”

Psalm 111:7, 8.


What was Christ’s personal attitude toward the law of Ten Commandments?

I delight to do thy will, O my God: yea, thy law is within my heart.”

Psalm 40:8.

Jesus said, “If ye keep my commandments, ye shall abide in my love; even as I have kept my Father's commandments, and abide in his love.”

John 15:10.


Did Christ come to abolish any part of God’s law?

Think not that I am come to destroy the law, or the prophets: I am not come to destroy, but to fulfil. For verily I say unto you, Till heaven and earth pass, one jot or one tittle shall in no wise pass from the law, till all be fulfilled. Whosoever therefore shall break one of these least commandments, and shall teach men so, he shall be called the least in the kingdom of heaven: but whosoever shall do and teach them, the same shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven.”

Mathew 5:17-19.


Note: The law mentioned here included all that Moses and the prophets had written. He did not come to set aside any of it. He fulfilled the ceremonial types and shadows in the books of Moses as their great antitype. The Ten Commandment law He fulfilled through perfect obedience. And he fulfilled what the prophets had written of Him when He came as the Messiah, the Saviour of the human race.


What does it mean to fulfill when applied to God’s law?

To fulfill means to do, to perform, or to act in accordance with, Paul says, “Bear ye one another's burdens, and so fulfil the law of Christ.” Galatians 6:2. Christ’s act of being baptized was a fulfilling of righteousness. Read Mathew 3:15; also James 2:8, 9.


Note: God’s great moral Decalogue is eternal; whereas, ritual law is only temporary. Read Ephesians 2:5. All typical laws have ended.


What is another proof of the enduring nature of God’s law?

It is the fact that God’s law is the standard of the judgment.

Read Ecclesiastes 12:13, 14; James 2:8-12.


Rather than abolish the law what was predicted that He would do with it?

The LORD is well pleased for his righteousness' sake; he will magnify the law, and make it honourable.”

Isaiah 42:21.


How did Christ magnify the law?

Ye have heard that it was said by them of old time, Thou shalt not kill; and whosoever shall kill shall be in danger of the judgment: But I say unto you, That whosoever is angry with his brother without a cause shall be in danger of the judgment: and whosoever shall say to his brother, Raca, shall be in danger of the council: but whosoever shall say, Thou fool, shall be in danger of hell fire. Ye have heard that it was said by them of old time, Thou shalt not commit adultery: But I say unto you, That whosoever looketh on a woman to lust after her hath committed adultery with her already in his heart.” (Raca meaning empty one, thou worthless).

Mathew 5:21, 22, 27, 28.


Will God’s righteousness (law, see Psalm 119:172) ever be abolished?

“Lift up your eyes to the heavens, and look upon the earth beneath: for the heavens shall vanish away like smoke, and the earth shall wax old like a garment, and they that dwell therein shall die in like manner: but my salvation shall be for ever, and my righteousness shall not be abolished. Hearken unto me, ye that know righteousness, the people in whose heart is my law; fear ye not the reproach of men, neither be ye afraid of their revilings.”

Isaiah 51:6, 7.


Note: Moral law is related to the relationships that exist between the Creator and the creature, and between creatures. The Decalogue rests on the principle of love to God and impartial love to one’s fellow beings; hence, it defines a man’s duty towards God and his duty towards his fellow human beings. Read Mathew 22:36-40; Romans 13:8-10. Thus, as long as these relationships shall exist, just so long the moral law will exist, defining these two obligations. According to Romans 3:31, faith does not abrogate (do away with) God’s law but establishes it (causes it to stand).



God’s law will endure because of its holy nature. Says David, “All thy commandments are righteousness.” Psalm 119:172. Obedience to God’s law must not be merely an outward compliance, but rather a genuine heart service. According to Mathew 5:21-48 perfection involves every thought as well as every action.






A Christian is a person who has accepted Christ as his personal Saviour from sin. The reason He goes to Christ for pardon from sin is because of the law of God and the Spirit of God have made him conscious of his sin. God has promised that when a man confesses and puts away sin He will forgive. Read John 1:9. It is this gracious love of Christ which awakens love in the heart of the sinner so that he then desires to do God’s will. Therefore the Christian is never opposed to the keeping of God’s law.


How does a person become a Christian?

It is a three step process and can be referred to as the ABC method.

    1. Accept Christ as Saviour (Isaiah 45:22; Acts 4:10, 12).
    2. Believe Christ to be the Son of God (1 John 5:13; John 20:31; Acts 16:31; Mathew 28:20).
    3. Confess your sins (Psalm 32:5; 1 John 1:9; Leviticus 5:5).


When a person is converted to Christ what takes place?

Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.”

2 Corinthians 5:17.


Note: In his conversion with Nicodemus Jesus made it clear that being converted to Christ is a new birth. “Jesus answered and said unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.”

John 3:3.

Read also Luke 18:13, 14.


Through what power is the new birth accomplished?

Being born again, not of corruptible seed, but of incorruptible, by the word of God, which liveth and abideth for ever.”

1 Peter 1:23.


What do all people have in common?

For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God.”

Romans 3:23.


Note: Man is a sinner. As such he cannot save himself. He is condemned to die; his only hope of life is through the power of God. Read Romans 6:23. Sinfulness is a part of man’s nature. 1 Peter 1:23.


How does God provide pardon for sins of the past?

Being justified freely by his grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus: Whom God hath set forth to be a propitiation through faith in his blood, to declare his righteousness for the remission of sins that are past, through the forbearance of God.”

Romans 3:24, 25.


Note: Christ’s death for sin paid the price of our transgressions. Read Romans 5:6, 8 and Isaiah 53:5.


What kind of life follows the new birth?

In explaining the new birth to Nicodemus Jesus said, “That which is born of the flesh is flesh; and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit.”

John 3:6.

For what the law could not do, in that it was weak through the flesh, God sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, and for sin, condemned sin in the flesh: That the righteousness of the law might be fulfilled in us, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit.”

Romans 8:3, 4.

The Holy Spirit so changes the heart that now we love God supremely and our fellow men as ourselves so that we choose to live out these precepts.

Read Romans 5:5; 1 John 3:14; Romans 13:8-10.


How will the Christian regard God’s law?

Let thy mercies come also unto me, O LORD, even thy salvation, according to thy word. So shall I keep thy law continually for ever and ever. And I will delight myself in thy commandments, which I have loved.”

Psalm 119:41, 44, 47.


Note: It must ever be remembered that being saved by God’s grace does not make of no effect the principles of God’s law. “Do we then make void the law through faith? God forbid: yea, we establish the law.” Romans 3:31.



When Jesus was asked, “What…shall I do, that I may have eternal life?” Jesus replied by saying, “If thou will enter into life, keep the commandments.” Mathew 19:16, 17. The rich young ruler professed to have kept the commandments but Jesus showed him by magnifying the law (Isaiah 42:21) that he had not really been a commandment keeper (Mathew 19:18-20). Paul commands: “Lay hold on eternal life.” ----------1 Timothy 6:12. How? Read Isaiah 1:18-20. Let us not refuse to enter the open door to pardon and obedience through the power and grace of God. Read Hebrews 2:1-3.






There are three kinds of laws mentioned in the Bible. It is important to distinguish the different characteristics of these laws otherwise one could be guilty of using the sacred scriptures in such a way as to bring about his own destruction. Read Peter 3:15, 16.


The three types of laws are:

    1. Civil Laws – These were laws which regulated a multitude of things which had to do with the operation of Israel. They had to do with health, sanitation, disease, crime, court procedures, etc. These are not binding today as civil obligations although many of the basic principles still apply.
    2. Ceremonial Laws – These laws were the sanctuary laws which governed the religious services of Israel and which pointed forward to the Messiah.
    3. Moral Law – This is the Ten Commandment Law recorded in Exodus 20:1-17. This law was proclaimed on Mount Sinai, written by God on tables of stone and preserved by Israel as universal law for man.


Did God’s moral law exist before Mount Sinai? If so, how can we be sure of this?

Wherefore, as by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned.”

Romans 5:12.


Note: Our first father, Adam, was acquainted with God’s law; otherwise, it could not be said of him that he sinned. Paul declares, “I had not known sin, but by the law: for I had not known lust, except the law has said, Thou shalt not covet.” Romans 7:7.


The Ten Commandments as they existed before Mount Sinai.

1.      First commandment which had to do with other gods. Read Genesis 35:2-4 and Joshua 24:2.

2.      Second commandment which forbids image worship. Read Genesis 31:19-34 and Genesis 35:1-4.

3.      Third commandment forbids disrespect of God. Read Exodus 5:2; Job 21:7, 14, 15.

4.      Fourth commandment has to do with God’s Sabbath. Read Genesis 2:1-3 and Exodus 16:22-29.

5.      Fifth commandment had to do with respecting parents. Read Genesis 37:28-35 and Genesis 50:15-17.

6.      Sixth commandment concerning killing. Read Genesis 4:8 and 1 John 3:13, 15.

7.      Seventh commandment which forbids unfaithfulness in marriage. Read Genesis 34:1, 2, 31 and Genesis 39:7-9.

8.      Eighth commandment forbids stealing. Read Genesis 27:35, 36 and Genesis 44:4-8.

9.      Ninth commandment had to do with deception and falsehood. Read Genesis 27:17-24.

10. Tenth commandment had to do with covetousness.

      Eve coveted that which belonged to God before she took it. Read Genesis 3:6.


Note: While it is true that the ten precepts are not stated formally, it is evident from these accounts that the people were aware of them, some ordering their lives by men, others choosing to violate them.



The principles of God’s law were certainly known before Mount Sinai. Why was it necessary to reveal His law at Mount Sinai? Because the people had been mingling with heathenism and idolatry for long centuries of Egyptian slavery and they had lost sight of God and His law. This is one of the reasons why He brought them out of Egypt. Read Psalm 105:37-45.







Jesus came to set men and women free from a yoke of bondage. Paul says, “Stand fast therefore in the liberty wherewith Christ hath made us free, and be not entangled again with the yoke of bondage.” Galatians 5:1. Several passages of scripture indicate a yoke of bondage having been placed on the people that was hard to bear. Read Mathew 23:1-4; Acts 15:10; Galatians 2:4; and Peter 2:19. However, the yoke of bondage was not God’s moral law.


Which of the Ten Commandments could be obliterated?

    1. Certainly not the first for this would give sanction to polytheism and the blood of Christ could not save men if they believed in many God’s.
    2. This is also true with regards to the second commandment. People who bow down to images need the gospel and the blood of Christ.
    3. Jesus spoke of the binding obligations of the third commandment. Read Mathew 5:34 and James 5:12.
    4. To do away with the fourth commandment would be to take away one of the greatest blessings of God to man. Jesus kept the Sabbath. Read Luke 4:16; Mark 2:27. The Sabbath is as perpetual as eternity. Read Isaiah 66:22, 33.
    5. The fifth commandment is the basis of all family relationships. This was the first commandment with promise.

      Read Ephesians 6:1, 2.

    1. Jesus exalted the binding claims of the sixth commandment. Read Mathew 5:21, 22. Compare 1 John 3:15.
    2. The last four could not be cast aside. Each is essential and the more closely we observe these commands through the power of Christ the more peace, joy, happiness, love and power we will have. Read Psalm 119:97, 165.
    3. God’s law is not the yoke of bondage. It is called the law of liberty. Read James 1:25.


Which of the ceremonial laws was a bondage?

1.      The Passover was a prophecy of the Messiah. Read 1 Corinthians 5:7.

2.      The Feast of Pentecost was symbolic of the outpouring of the Holy Spirit which came fifty days after the presentation of the wave sheaf offering. Read Leviticus 23:16-19. Compare Acts 2:1-4.

3.      The Feast of Tabernacles was a forcible teaching concerning Christ’s final work of redemption.

4.      The Day of Atonement was a reminder of Christ’s atonement. Read Hebrews 9:12-14.

5.      Circumcision was a sign of an everlasting covenant between God and Abraham and his prosperity. Read Genesis 17:9-14;

      1 Corinthians 7:19. It contained a lesson for God’s people. Read Deuteronomy 10:16; 30:6.

6.      All these festivals and circumcision were done away with at the cross. Read Colossians 2:14.


Note: The New Testament views the ceremonial laws (for which the rite of circumcision is sometimes used to represent the whole system) as “a yoke…which neither our fathers nor we were able to bear” (Acts 15:1, 5, 10); a “middle wall of partition” of “enmity” which separated Jew and Gentile (Ephesians 2:14, 15), “contrary to us” (Colossians 2:14). Since the ritual taught the gospel (Hebrews 4:1, 2) in types and was given to man from Adam onward and enlarged in the sanctuary, why does the New Testament view it with such disfavor?

There are two reasons:

1.      The Jews turned the ritual into a works-salvation system. This made it a bondage (note Peter and Paul’s arguments –

      Acts 15:9-11; Galatians 2:16; 5:4-6).

2.      The Jews perverted the ritual system by adding numerous rabbinical teachings and requirements. Read Mark 7:1-13.



How did Jesus regard the Ten Commandments?

If ye keep my commandments, ye shall abide in my love; even as I have kept my Father's commandments, and abide in his love.”

John 15:10.

Read Mathew 22:36-40. Psalm 40:8 was a prophecy of Christ.



When Christ was here men were in bondage to man-made laws. Jesus said, “And he said, Woe unto you also, ye lawyers! for ye lade men with burdens grievous to be borne, and ye yourselves touch not the burdens with one of your fingers.” Luke 11:46. He further said, “Saying, The scribes and the Pharisees sit in Moses' seat: All therefore whatsoever they bid you observe, that observe and do; but do not ye after their works: for they say, and do not. For they bind heavy burdens and grievous to be borne, and lay them on men's shoulders; but they themselves will not move them with one of their fingers.” Mathew 23:2-4. Jesus taught obedience to God’s will. Read Mathew 7:21-27.






Two kinds of laws given in the Bible are often confused with each other by bible students. They are moral and ritual. God is the source of both. The moral law sets forth His will; the ritual law sets forth the gospel in figures and symbols. In the sanctuary Israel had the very same gospel we have today. Read Hebrews 4:1, 2.


Which law reveals sin?

What shall we say then? Is the law sin? God forbid. Nay, I had not known sin, but by the law: for I had not known lust, except the law had said, Thou shalt not covet.”

Romans 7:7.


Note: It is the tenth of the Ten Commandment law which forbids a person to covet.


What other names are given to the Ten Commandments by James?

If ye fulfil the royal law according to the scripture, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself, ye do well: But if ye have respect to persons, ye commit sin, and are convinced of the law as transgressors. For whosoever shall keep the whole law, and yet offend in one point, he is guilty of all. For he that said, Do not commit adultery, said also, Do not kill. Now if thou commit no adultery, yet if thou kill, thou art become a transgressor of the law. So speak ye, and so do, as they that shall be judged by the law of liberty.”

James 2:8-12.


Note: Here it is clear the law of liberty is that law which says, “Do not commit adultery” and “Do not kill.” James also calls it “the royal

law.” It contains the principles by which men are to be judged.


What is the first record of keeping the sacrificial or ceremonial law?

By faith Abel offered unto God a more excellent sacrifice than Cain, by which he obtained witness that he was righteous, God testifying of his gifts: and by it he being dead yet speaketh.”

Hebrews 11:4.

Read Genesis 4:3-5.


Note: Had man never sinned there would never have been a need for the ceremonial law that had to do with regulating sacrifices. The sacrificial system pointed to Christ as man’s hope for salvation.


Upon what did God write His Ten Commandments?

And he declared unto you his covenant, which he commanded you to perform, even ten commandments; and he wrote them upon two tables of stone.”

Deuteronomy 4:13.


In what did Moses write the laws God gave?

And it came to pass, when Moses had made an end of writing the words of this law in a book, until they were finished.”

Deuteronomy 31:24


In what were the Ten Commandments placed?

And he took and put the testimony into the ark, and set the staves on the ark, and put the mercy seat above upon the ark.”

Exodus 40:20.


Where were the books containing the law of ceremonies placed?

Take this book of the law, and put it in the side of the ark of the covenant of the LORD your God, that it may be there for a witness against thee.”

Deuteronomy 31:26.


Note: The book Moses wrote includes the Ten Commandments. Having the book in the side of the ark enabled the priests to have access to it so they could know the will of God and could teach it. Without question, the fact that God wrote the Decalogue on stone and had placed in into the ark beneath the mercy seat shows the importance of the Decalogue as central in the divine government. However, what Moses wrote was as authoritative as any other book in the Bible, because it was the Word of the Lord.


What is the nature of the Ten Commandments?

They not only define man’s duties to God (first four commandments) but also man’s duties to his fellows (last six). Read Mathew 22:36-40; Romans 13:8-10; Galatians 5:14. God’s law is spiritual (Romans 7:14), exceeding broad (Psalm 119:96) because it measures the motives and intents of the heart as well as the overt acts (Mathew 5:27, 28; Mark 7:21-23).


What was the value of the ceremonial law?

The writer of Hebrews said that the tabernacle “Which was a figure for the time then present, in which were offered both gifts and sacrifices, that could not make him that did the service perfect, as pertaining to the conscience; Which stood only in meats and drinks, and divers washings, and carnal ordinances, imposed on them until the time of reformation.”

Hebrews 9:9, 10.


Note: What was the purpose of the ceremonial system? If it made nothing perfect, why did God give it? Why from Adam to Christ’s day did they offer sacrifices if the rites accomplished no salvation? These were the types by which man was taught the plan of salvation. Each sacrifice foreshadowed the ultimate “Lamb of God” who would take away the world’s sins (John 1:29).


Did Christ’s death destroy the Ten Commandments? How did the apostles regard this law?

What shall we say then? Is the law sin? God forbid. Nay, I had not known sin, but by the law: for I had not known lust, except the law had said, Thou shalt not covet. Wherefore the law is holy, and the commandment holy, and just, and good.”

Romans 7:7, 12.

For whosoever shall keep the whole law, and yet offend in one point, he is guilty of all. For he that said, Do not commit adultery, said also, Do not kill. Now if thou commit no adultery, yet if thou kill, thou art become a transgressor of the law. So speak ye, and so do, as they that shall be judged by the law of liberty.”

James 2:10-12.


Note: The apostles did not see a demise of the Decalogue at the cross. To them the Ten Commandments were holy, just, and good and ever served to awaken the sinner to his need. They saw the precepts as guides for living and the standard of final judgment.


What effect did Christ’s death on the cross have upon the ceremonial law?

Having abolished in his flesh the enmity, even the law of commandments contained in ordinances; for to make in himself of twain one new man, so making peace.”

Ephesians 2:15.


Note: Christ’s death on the cross brought to an end the ritual system inasmuch as He was the Lamb toward which all theses sacrifices all pointed. Since Christ had come these were of no more service. The Shadow had met the object.



It had been predicted in prophecy that the law which had to do with sacrifices would cease in the middle of the seventieth week allotted to the Jewish nation. The first 69 weeks or 483 prophetic days which would be 483 years reached to the baptism of Jesus in A.D. 27. In the middle of that last seven years Christ was crucified which was the spring of A.D. 31. Read Daniel 9:24-27. As Christ hung on the cross “Jesus, when he had cried again with a loud voice, yielded up the ghost. And, behold, the veil of the temple was rent in twain from the top to the bottom; and the earth did quake, and the rocks rent.” Mathew 27:50, 51. The sacrifices ceased to have any further typical significance – they no longer had any meaning to point forward to a coming Messiah – Christ had come. However, God’s royal law of Ten Commandments still points out sin. To obtain victory over sin we must trust Jesus.






Throughout the Bible reference is made to God’s covenant. Basically this is a provision from God whereby sinful men can become the people of God. We can either accept or reject it. The covenant contains three points.

  1. God’s promises (Galatians 3:16, 17).
  2. God’s conditions, that is, obedience to His will (Deuteronomy 4:13).
  3. The means to meet the conditions. This is Christ (the gospel) (Isaiah 42:1, 6).


How many covenants does the Old Testament mention?

There is basically only one covenant. It was with Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, and then with Israel at Sinai.

Read Psalm 105:6-10.


Note: After the Sinai experience the leaders of Israel continued to call the people to renew their commitment to this everlasting covenant.


Why did God plan to deliver Israel from Egyptian bondage?

And God heard their groaning, and God remembered his covenant with Abraham, with Isaac, and with Jacob.”

Exodus 2:24.


When God called Moses to lead Israel out of Egypt what was His purpose?

And I appeared unto Abraham, unto Isaac, and unto Jacob, by the name of God Almighty, but by my name JEHOVAH was I not known to them. And I have also established my covenant with them, to give them the land of Canaan, the land of their pilgrimage, wherein they were strangers. And I have also heard the groaning of the children of Israel, whom the Egyptians keep in bondage; and I have remembered my covenant.”

Exodus 6:3-5.


Note: God’s covenant made with Israel at Sinai was the same one He had made with Abraham. In Genesis 17 the covenant made with Abraham is referred to as the everlasting covenant; nine times He speaks of it as “my covenant.”


What was required of Israel by the covenant?

Now therefore, if ye will obey my voice indeed, and keep my covenant, then ye shall be a peculiar treasure unto me above all people: for all the earth is mine.”

Exodus 19:5.


Note: They were required to obey, and were given the sign of circumcision.


Was God’s covenant at Sinai another covenant?

No. God simply renewed His covenant to Israel at that time. The promises are there (Exodus 19:4-6). The law is there and the call to obedience (Exodus 20). The means to fulfill the conditions are there too through the gospel as presented in the sanctuary

(Hebrews 9:1). The ratifying of the covenant at Sinai, by sacrificial blood, pointed to Christ and the ultimate ratification of the everlasting covenant.


Note: Relative to the renewing of the everlasting covenant Jeremiah predicted it in the coming Messianic Age (Jeremiah 31:31-34. Compare Jeremiah 30:9). Jesus announced its renewal in the Lord’s Supper (Luke 22:20). God could not renew the everlasting covenant with physical Israel as they rejected Him, but He is able to do so with spiritual Israel.


Why does Paul mention an old covenant in Galatians and in Hebrews? Does God have two ways of dealing with man? What is the difference between the old and the new covenants?

    1. The old covenant was based on works while the new covenant is based on faith (Galatians 3:2).


Note: Paul shows in Galatians 4:22-26 that just as Abraham perverted the use of Hagar – making a wife of her to secure a child – so Israel perverted the moral and ritual instruction from an arrangement of law and gospel (one convicting [the law] and the other pointing to Christ [ritual]) to merely a system of works -- obey it all and you will be saved. Therefore the old is called old because Israel perverted the covenant into a system of works. God did not make an old covenant of works and then punish them for something they could not do. God gave the people the same basic covenant He gave to Abraham. That it became a system of works is due to the nation’s perversion of it – this was never God’s design.


    1. The fault at Sinai lay with the people who failed to maintain their relationship to God’s covenant. Then to the covenant was formulated for them on the basis of the sanctuary types which in time came to an end.
    2. When a person leaves the new covenant experience to live under the old, he falls from grace.

      Read Galatians 5:1-5.


What is the proper function of God’s law?

Therefore by the deeds of the law there shall no flesh be justified in his sight: for by the law is the knowledge of sin.

Romans 3:20.

What shall we say then? Is the law sin? God forbid. Nay, I had not known sin, but by the law: for I had not known lust, except the law had said, Thou shalt not covet.”

Romans 7:7.



God’s law is His standard of right. It expresses His will. Read Psalm 40:8. It declares man’s duty. Read Ecclesiastes 12:13. And it reveals sin. Read Romans 3:20; 7:7. God’s law is also the method by which He works. It shows how God runs the universe – morally and spiritually. God’s method is obedience to His will.

If man had never sinned he could easily go by the terms “obey and live, disobey and perish.” God cannot change His law as the standard, but because man has sinned He has to change the method of attaining righteousness.

Israel’s failure was a failure of faith (Romans 9:31-33; Hebrews 4:1, 2). The eternal principle of the everlasting covenant is to believe what God has promised and allow the Holy Spirit to write God’s laws into our hearts. Salvation by grace establishes God’s law as the standard.  Read Romans 3:31; 8:3, 4; 13:9, 10.






There was a law that was abolished when Christ died on the cross. It had to do with ordinances concerning meats and drinks, special holy days, religious festivals, and annual Sabbaths. Instruction concerning the yearly feasts and their related ritual Sabbaths is specifically given in Leviticus 23. Since these yearly feasts were used for worship and they occurred on certain fixed days of the month, these ritual Sabbaths also fell on various days of the week as does Christmas. These annual or ritual Sabbaths were separate from the weekly Sabbath which always fell on the seventh day of the week.


What was the purpose of these ordinances contained in the law of Moses?

Let no man therefore judge you in meat, or in drink, or in respect of an holyday, or of the new moon, or of the sabbath days: Which are a shadow of things to come; but the body is of Christ.”

Colossians 2:16, 17.


Note: This law was one of types and shadows pointing the Jewish people to a coming event. John saw Christ as a fulfillment of the sacrificial lamb as a type of Christ. Read John 1:29. When Christ died type met antitype and for that reason we do not keep the yearly Passover, its ritual Sabbaths, and other festivals.


Of what is the weekly Sabbath a reminder?

For in six days the LORD made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that in them is, and rested the seventh day: wherefore the LORD blessed the sabbath day, and hallowed it.”

Exodus 20:11.


Note: The fourth commandment is preceded by the word “Remember.” Read Exodus 20:8-11. The weekly Sabbath was set up by God as a memorial of creation. Read Genesis 2:1-3.


What was done to the ritual law at the cross?

Having abolished in his flesh the enmity, even the law of commandments contained in ordinances; for to make in himself of twain one new man, so making peace.”

Ephesians 2:15.


Note: In this text Paul refers to ceremonial ordinances given for a time and then abolished at the cross. This law was temporary and served only until the fulfillment of its types on the cross. Its purpose was to teach Israel the gospel truths and to point them to the coming Messiah. With the actual coming of Christ, the typical rituals no longer had a purpose to exist.



God’s great moral ten commandment law is as eternal as God Himself. This law was in existence at creation. It was “ordained to life.” Romans 7:10. This law pointed out sin. Read Romans 7:7.

The ritual law of sacrifices had its origin with Adam, was practiced by the patriarchs, and expanded by God at Mt. Sinai into the sanctuary worship. Its purpose was to point to Christ and His great plan of salvation.






God’s law and His grace are not in competition. Some have thought that because we are saved by grace (Ephesians 2:8) we don’t need to obey God’s holy law. Others have assumed that it was all law in the Old Testament and in the New Testament it is all grace and no law. It is never safe to go by what people think. Our only question should be, What says the Bible?


To how many has God revealed His grace?

For the grace of God that bringeth salvation hath appeared to all men.”

Titus 2:11.


Note: Grace is the unmerited favor and the love of God. It is God’s power at work in a life yielded completely to God. When a repentant sinner accepts Christ, God counts to his credit the righteousness of Jesus Christ.


Was Moses aware of God’s grace?

And the LORD passed by before him, and proclaimed, The LORD, The LORD God, merciful and gracious, longsuffering, and abundant in goodness and truth.”

Exodus 34:6.


Did Noah live under grace?

But Noah found grace in the eyes of the LORD.”

Genesis 6:8.


What means has God used to make His grace available to humanity?

Being justified freely by his grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus: Whom God hath set forth to be a propitiation through faith in his blood, to declare his righteousness for the remission of sins that are past, through the forbearance of God.”

Romans 3:24, 25.


What are some results of grace?

It gives remission or pardon for past sins (Romans 3:25). It brings eternal life to the believer (Romans 5:21). The believer gives up sin (Romans 6:1-4), and does the works that God ordained (Ephesians 2:8-10). Our obedience to God’s will as expressed in His law is the natural fruit of our salvation.


Was David familiar with the fact that salvation came by grace?

Even as David also describeth the blessedness of the man, unto whom God imputeth righteousness without works, Saying, Blessed are they whose iniquities are forgiven, and whose sins are covered.”

Romans 4:6, 7.


Is the believer under the law or under grace?

For sin shall not have dominion over you: for ye are not under the law, but under grace.”

Romans 6:14.


Note: Those under grace are those who have died to sin. Read Romans 6:3-7. No person can be saved by means of obedience to God’s law; only by means of God’s grace. And he who accepts the forgiveness of God’s grace is not under the condemnation of God’s law.


What is the condition of those who are under the law?

Now we know that what things soever the law saith, it saith to them who are under the law: that every mouth may be stopped, and all the world may become guilty before God.”

Romans 3:19.


Note: Those who are violating God’s law are not under grace. They are under the condemnation of the law, and thus guilty before God.



James tells us who the lawgiver is. “There is one lawgiver, who is able to save and to destroy: who art thou that judgest another?James 4:12. Christ is the one able to save. Read Mathew 1:21 and Hebrews 7:25. The one able to destroy is also Christ. Read 2 Thessalonians 1:7-9. Therefore the author of grace is also the author of the law.