Rabbi Schneider — Synchronizing The Covenants
I am concluding today this expositional series on The Covenants of Scripture. You all that have been with me these last five weeks now, I know that you've got this now; the relationship between the Abrahamic, Mosaic and New Covenants.
We're gonna head right today into the home stretch of the series. We're going to the Book of Galatians because in the Book of Galatians, chapter number 3, Paul synchronizes for us how the Abrahamic, Mosaic and New Covenants relate together and how we relate to each one of those covenants as believers today.
So let's turn our attention to the Word of God. If you've got your Bible out, let's go there together. I'm beginning today, Galatians, chapter 3. I'm gonna pick up where I left off last week, verse number 5, of Galatians, 3.
Hear the Word of God. Paul says this: So then, does He who provides you with the Spirit and works miracles among you, do it by the works of the Law, or by hearing with faith? So what are the works of the Law?
The works of the Law, listen to me, are the Mosaic Covenant. The Mosaic Covenant is where the law comes from. So what Paul is saying to these believers in Galatia is they did not receive the Spirit. They did not experience miracles through the law.
It wasn't through doing the works of the law that they saw these things, but rather it was by the Spirit, listen now, that they received through faith. They didn't receive the Spirit by performing the works of the law, did they? They receive the Spirit when they very simply put their faith in Jesus.
So Paul now is coming against this doctrine that was circulating in the church of Galatia that believing in Jesus was good, but we needed to add to it, they were teaching, the works of the law. Paul is saying no, you don't add the works of the law to your faith in Jesus. It's Jesus only, and it's Jesus alone.
The law has its place. The law is holy, spiritual, righteous and good. And Paul said, it's good when used rightly, when it's used profitably. The law can enlighten us against of spiritual realities, not against the law enlightens us about spiritual realities. And when we relate to it in the Spirit, looking for prophetic application, the law helps us as believers.
But to relate to the law in terms of trying to obey it to earn favor with God is a total wrong approach and it will end up bringing a curse upon us. So let's continue.
Verse number 6: Even so, so now Paul is, is comparing Abraham with the Mosaic Law. Again, Abraham entered into a covenant with the Lord apart from the Mosaic Law because the Mosaic Law hadn't been given yet.
The Mosaic Law came after Abraham died. So listen what Paul says going back to Abraham: Even so Abraham believed God, and it was reckoned to him as righteous. So here Paul is quoting from the Book of Genesis, chapter 15. Abraham entered into this relationship with God apart from the works of the law. The law hadn't been given. He entered into it by faith.
Now I've been making the point that real faith translates into action. James said this: faith without works is dead. But the action is not the works of the law. It's just obeying the Spirit. It's obeying the Word. It's obeying what God is saying. Let's continue on. God wants us to hear and obey. That's what the Hebrew word Shema is.
Many of you have heard the Hebrew word Shema. Shema Israel, Adonai Eloheinu, Adonai echad Hear, oh Israel, it's translated, the Lord is God. The Lord is one. Notice that here Shema, in, in, in the Jewish mind that word Shema, that Hebrew word Shema implies a hearing that translates into doing.
So we're not talking about faith apart from action, we're talking about a living faith that moves us to obey and to follow him. Let's continue in verse number 7: Therefore, be sure it is by those who are of faith who are the sons of Abraham. Remember, not the ones that are keeping the law.
I remember ministering in a Messianic congregation years ago and they had a Gentile pastor, you know, this guy that had become so romanced by Judaism that, you know, he completely lost his way in the faith. And what he was teaching this congregation was that when Jesus said learn of me, remember Jesus said this in the gospels.
Jesus said, learn of me for my yoke is easy, Jesus said, and my burden is light. Take of me and you'll find rest for your souls. And what this Gentile pastor that was in love with Judaism was teaching these Christians, he was teaching them that the yoke that Jesus was referring to was the yoke of the Mosaic Law, which was absolutely heretical theology.
And yet it exists in the church today. And those of you that are learning about the Jewish roots of your faith, I just wanted to warn you about this so that if you go on-line and start researching the Jewish roots of your faith and Messianic ministries, when you come into contact with teaching like this, you'll know how to reject it because it doesn't line up with the Word of God.
This same truth is illustrated in Romans, chapter 7. Paul illustrates the relationship to the law. He's speaking to Israel. He says it's like a woman that is married to a man, and as long as she's married to that man, she's bound to that man. But if that man dies, if her husband dies, she's free to marry another.
Paul said that's what it was like to you. You were married to the law until Jesus came. But now that Jesus came and set us free from the law, we're not married to the law anymore, we're married to Jesus. Let's continue on. Verse number 8: The Scripture, foreseeing that God would justify the Gentiles by faith, preached the Gospel beforehand to Abraham...
Notice that I said the New Covenant is built upon the Abrahamic Covenant. You see it here again. The Scripture, foreseeing that God would justify the Gentiles by faith, preached the Gospel beforehand to Abraham saying, All the nations will be blessed in you. So then those who are of faith are blessed with Abraham, the believer. Amen.
Notice that it's all about faith here, real faith not passive faith, real living faith. You believe in God. You love God. You believe that he is and that he's a rewarder of those that seek him. And so you're pursuing him passionately. This is a real relationship with God; not the Mosaic Law, this passionate pursuit of God. And then when we read the whole Word of God including the Mosaic Law, we're able to understand what place all the principles and teachings of God have in our life. But none of them become the conditions by which we gain God's favor by.
Let's continue on. Verse 10: For as many as are of the works of the Law are under a curse; as it is written, Cursed is everyone who does not abide by all things written in the Book of the Law to perform them. Once again, because the only way you could be blessed by the law, the Mosaic Law, is you, if you kept all the commandments and all the statutes.
So Paul says, if you try to approach God on the basis of the law or if you're trying to mix the Mosaic Law with your faith in Christ, you're gonna be cursed because you can't keep the Mosaic Law. You're gonna get what the Mosaic Law says will come upon you if you don't keep it, and that's a curse.
Continuing on, verse number 11: Now that no one is justified by the Law before God is evident; he says on the other hand listen now, The righteous man shall live by faith. He's saying no, your, the Mosaic Law's not gonna work. Keep your eye on Jesus. Keep your eye on faith. Christ, in verse 13, redeemed us from the curse of the Law, having become a curse for us.
In verse number 14: in order that in Christ Jesus the blessing of Abraham might come to the Gentiles, so that we would receive the promise of the Spirit through faith. Once again, many of you are watching my show because you love the Jewish roots of your faith. Be careful of teaching that tries to lure you back into keeping the law.
You can learn from the law. It can become a prophetic teacher so that you're looking to the law and saying how does this help me today as I'm being led by the Spirit? Very quick example, one of the principles in the law was God told the children of Israel to build a precipice or a fence around the roof of their home.
So someone that wanted to live by all the statutes and all the commandments of the Mosaic Law today, they would have to build a fence or a precipice around the roof of their home. But that is absolutely not the intent. The intent was that in the days that the Old Testament was written, roofs were, homes rather were built with flat roofs. And people would literally be up playing on the roof of the home.
The kids would be playing up there. There would be entertainment going on up there. The families would be getting together up there. And because God is such a personal God and cares so deeply about us and is so involved in our families, he instructed them to build a fence around the roof of their home so that someone wouldn't fall off the roof and get hurt. That's the point.
Today, the way to view that principle is wow, God really wants me to safeguard my property. So if you live in a climate where, you know, it's icy outside in the winter and you've got people that are walking up your driveway or your front steps, you would apply the principle of the law, not the letter of it, but the principle of it by putting salt down on your driveway or your steps.
So we look for the prophetic principles of the law. We look for the spiritual application, but we don't live by the letter of it and we don't use it as a way to try to stand before God righteously. I hope everyone's getting my point.