What about Sin?


pause and refect

Q:  Based on the belief that Jesus died as an atonement for sin, a prevailing teaching in the Church holds that sins are automatically pardoned and the commandments of God are thus made null and void.
Does the law/Torah/teaching of God expressed in the Hebrew Scriptures still have relevance and, if so, how is it applicable in the life of a believer today?

At the conclusion this week of Ethics Now & Then 63, Avot 4:13, this question is raised… what are your thoughts?

Romans 8:1 reads: “There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus (Messiah Yeshua). For the law of the Spirit of life has set you free in Christ Jesus from the law of sin and death.”

Sadly, instead of applying this verse to the “law of sin and death” – the inclination toward sin that seeks to indulge and satisfy the flesh – it is applied to the Holy Scriptures themselves – the Word that brings life! Paul clarifies this in verse 7:  “For the mind that is set on the flesh is hostile to God, for it does not submit to God’s law/Torah; indeed, it cannot.”

Many Christians believe, as has been taught in Replacement Theology and in the majority of the Church’s denominations, that the “law” that one is set free from is the Law/Torah of God. This thinking, built on and substantiated by other random verses from the letters of Paul, effectively frees one from paying attention to the commandments of God given in the  Hebrew Scriptures. Rather, the Torah, we are told, was written by the finger or Spirit of God, and will stand when all else fades. By His Spirit given in Yeshua all can cry, “Abba! Father!” (v. 16) and can learn, through His Word, to walk after the Good Shepherd Yeshua in Abba’s Torah (teaching) and ways of truth and kindness.

“For all who are led by the Spirit of God are sons of God” (Rom.8:14).

4 thoughts on “What about Sin?

  1. I have always believed that my having a relationship with God was dependant on me being faihful. Historicly I would say I was a little vague on what that really meant, possibly would define it a bit legalistic. Since following Dwight’s teaching (for which I am very greatful) I have an increasing understanding and experience of what walking in faithfulness means. My progress is slow but blessed.

    Many thanks Keren.

  2. The doctrine you point at is double flawed:
    We read in Hebrews that Jesus is still continuously intermediating on our behalf on the right side of the Father – so, the implication of a ones and for all atonement is misplaced.
    And why is this intermediary activity necessary?

    Than we have to look at the other flaw, namely that through Messiah’s death and resurrection the Torah is nullified. When we look at the Exodus motif we learn that, without God, we legally belong to “Pharaoh” and are under the mechanisms of his kingdom of sin resulting in death.

    But by Gods Exodus, Pharaoh died so to speak in the water; and with that his legal claim on us has come to be nullified! We are no longer his possession and are free to covenant with the Father who brings life and not death!

    Those who have not been liberated by and covenanted with God, still affirm and enforce Pharao’s kingdom. Just like many nazi’s still obeyed Hitler and prolonged his reign, even when he was already dead.

    For a child of God, the sticky tentacles of the kingdom of death can still tempt us to sin, HOWEVER, the Torahs purpose is to protect us from this and keep us in the Kingdom of Life.

    For those in the Kingdom of Death, the Torah warns that sin will lead to death and therefore literally describes their condemnation. For those in the Kingdom of Life, sin does not have that power anymore – Messiah is intermediating for us so we do not get under the sticky glue called ‘guilt’ and ‘condemnation’ but have the spiritual power to stand up again and follow the ways of Gods Torah.

    Bottom line: Gods Torah is a protective fence for the Kingdom of Death at the one hand, and a guiding direction force within the Kingdom of Life on the other hand. On the road Messiah makes sure as our intermediary that we realize who we are in Him: sons and daughters of the Almighty.

  3. Excellent observations Joan! We do well to really soak in these thoughts and let them sink deeply into our understanding. Thank you. Love the description of “a protective fence” on the one hand and “a guiding force giving direction” on the other. Baruch HaShem!

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