SABBATH

God's Gift to Us
Share this on FacebookEmail

Library Topic: Law and Grace


Show more Show less
The Covenants, Grace, and Law (Part 16)

Righteousness consists of applying the Law's letter and/or intent. Sin constitutes a failure of living up to the standards of what God defines as right.

Show more Show less
The Covenants, Grace, and Law (Part 25)

In Galatians, Paul took issue with the Halakhah, not God's word. Halakhah was a massive collection of human opinion that placed a yoke on its followers.

Show more Show less
The Covenants, Grace, and Law (Part 4)

Justification does not 'do away' with the law; it brings us into alignment with it, imputing the righteousness of Christ and giving access to God for sanctification.

Show more Show less
Paul: Grace, Law, and Obedience

Paul's writings, because of their complexity, are frequently twisted to say that he was anti-law. By denigrating God's law, the unconverted set their own standards.

Show more Show less
The Covenants, Grace, and Law (Part 26)

John Ritenbaugh reiterates that Paul's target in Galatians 2:16 was a syncretism of Judaism with strict Pagan ascetic Gnosticism and certainly not God's law. We need to avoid the Protestant ditch of "Christ did it all" leading to no attempt at law keeping or at best an apathetic assent to its value. Paul makes it abundantly clear that Christ did not free us from the death penalty in order to turn us into lawbreakers. Though God did not design the law to justify; without the law telling us of what to repent of, we would have no clue as to which path to take. The secret to successful law keeping is Christ living in us through God's Holy Spirit (Galatians 2:20; Romans 5:5) Christ will empower us, but will not live our lives for us. The marching orders for our pilgrimage derive from God's Word- containing His holy law.

Show more Show less
The Covenants, Grace, and Law (Part 18)

Paul never taught any Jew to forsake the Law of Moses, but he did warn against Pharisaical additions for the expressed purpose of attaining justification.

Show more Show less
The Covenants, Grace, and Law (Part 20)

The S.P.S. (Specific Purpose Statement) of the entire Bible is "Let us make man in our image, according our likeness" (Genesis 1:26). To this end God has given us His Law, which serves as a map showing us the way of sanctification and holiness. Because God desires companionship of beings like Himself, He is in the process of reproducing the God-kind. The map showing the way consists of the Old and New Testament, works inextricable as law and grace and letter and spirit. As Paul's writings reveal, the Old Testament is in the New revealed while the New Testament is in the Old concealed. Contemporaries of John and Paul (and some deceivers this very day) have tried to throw out the Old Testament and the Law, replacing it with Gnosticism.

Show more Show less
The Covenants, Grace and Law (Part 13)

John Ritenbaugh affirms that the Christian's hope constitutes an incremental acquisition of God's glory; that is what the New Covenant is all about. At this point in time, Christ is the only one who has received His inheritance, becoming the first-born of many brethren (Romans 8:29; Hebrews 2:10), having a glorified spiritual body (Revelation 1:13-16). Our hope, as we yield to God, is to be like Him (I John 3:1-3), to become a glorified member of God's family. Christ's sacrifice enabled us to get close to God, establishing a family relationship with Him. As we participate in the New Covenant, we go through the stages of justification, sanctification, and ultimately glorification as part of Christ's body.

Show more Show less
Was Jesus Christ Born Under the Law?

Galatians 4:4 says that Jesus was "born under [the] law." Some use this to say that while Christ had to keep all the rituals, we do not have to follow His example.

Show more Show less
Sovereignty, Election, and Grace (Part 5)

John Ritenbaugh clarifies that, in terms of salvation, grace and works are mutually exclusive (Ephesians 2:8-10), but good works are the result (or the fruits) of God's creative efforts. Grace frees one; works prove that one has been freed. Grace (or the gift of God) enables us to have a clear enlightened perception of God (I Corinthians 2:7-11) and delivers us from the enormity of our sins (Romans 5:15-17), freeing us and gifting us (Romans 12:3-5; I Corinthians 12:4-11) to do works consistent with God's law. Grace (given only to those who believe) frees us in order to keep the law, not to exempt us from keeping it (Romans 3:21-25).

Show more Show less
Faith Without Works

Three times, James states, 'Faith without works is dead!' Here's how James' teaching agrees with and complements the teaching of Paul on justification.

Show more Show less
Works of Faith (Part 1)

Many think works and faith are incompatible, but the Bible tells us to do works of faith. What are they? These are things we must do during the salvation process.

Show more Show less
Saved By Faith Alone?

Protestantism is based on Luther's insistance that Christians are saved by faith alone. But is the really true? Earl Henn explains that the Bible says this of justification, not salvation.

Show more Show less
What's Wrong With Works?

Certain categories of subject matter published in the Church of the Great God's "Berean: Daily Verse and Comment" are almost certain to stir challenges against their content. ...

Show more Show less
What Kind of Faith is Required for Salvation?

Do you know millions who actually believe in Jesus Christ have no salvation at all . . . because they trust in the wrong kind of faith? No subject pertaining to Christian salvation is more generally misunderstood than that of saving faith!

Show more Show less
Is Obedience Required Before Receiving God's Holy Spirit?

Acts 5:32 declares that God gives His Spirit to those who obey Him, yet some argue that keeping God's law is not necessary. What is the truth?

Show more Show less
Does Doctrine Really Matter? (Part 11)

John Ritenbaugh, focusing upon the seemingly innocent but subtle and pernicious doctrine of Dispensationalism, attacks the assumed yet unbiblical adversarial relationship between law and grace. Modern "Christianity" totally rejects the Bible in its eclectic, pick-and-choose religious hybrids, instead following Gnostic Docetism, which leads to vile, fleshly perversions. Hatred for Yahweh (Jesus Christ), the law, Israel, and the Sabbath, along with endorsing lawlessness, serves as common denominators for all Gnostic practitioners. Modern "Christianity," twisting Paul's writings to turn the grace of God into license to sin (by blurring the distinction between justification and sanctification) is totally derived from Gnosticism.

Show more Show less
James and Unleavened Bread (Part 1)

In this Unleavened Bread sermon, Richard Ritenbaugh asserts that learning God's way (and unlearning Satan's way) takes a lifetime- spiritually speaking, perhaps the most difficult and arduous task on the entire earth. Over a lifetime, with our cooperation, God fashions us into vessels of honor. The commands to eat unleavened bread outnumber the commands to refrain from eating leavened bread three to one, indicating that the most efficient way of eliminating sin is to do righteousness (eating God's word and applying its principles in our lives) If we do good, we won't have the time to do bad. The epistle of James applies to the Christian after the justification process has begun, indicating that after receiving forgiveness, after receiving God's implanted word, we are obligated to fulfill God's purpose in our lives, yielding to trials, bringing forth the fruits of character by doing (not just hearing) God's word. Paul and James steadfastly agree that faith without works is stone dead.

Show more Show less
Righteousness from Inside-Out

Many people, even in the church, fail to understand the kind of righteousness God is looking for. David Maas shows that God wants it written on our hearts—not just a set of dos and don'ts or rewards and punishments.

Show more Show less
Who the Two Witnesses Are Not

Many prophecy watchers have made their guesses about who the Two Witness of Revelation 11 are, but not all of their ideas have solid, biblical foundations. Charles Whitaker tackles a common view among interpreters, explaining that Scripture precludes it on very solid grounds.

Show more Show less
Loving Christ and Revelation 2:1-7

John Ritenbaugh, acknowledging that salvation cannot be earned or bought, reminds us that a gift is still a gift even though a condition has to be met. Meeting a condition does not (as Protestants would have us believe) change the character of a proposition. Keeping the commandments is the way we express love for God. The works that God demands of us consists of overcoming our flesh, the world, and Satan, as reflected in keeping God's commandments (John 14:15, I John 5:3). There is a direct relationship between loving Christ and doing the right works. God's love for us places us under a compelling obligation to reciprocate and to pass it on to others.

Show more Show less
Love and Works

Countering the Protestant red-herring argument, "You cannot earn salvation by works," John Ritenbaugh stresses that works certainly are not "done away" but that God expects works from all those He has called. We show our faithfulness and loyalty to God by our works or conduct - what we produce by what we have been given. The works demanded of us consist of continual striving to be faithful to our covenant relationship with God by keeping His commandments (not the traditions of men). As we strive to live by the Spirit instead of by the flesh (Romans 8:5) we will produce the kind of fruit pleasing to God. God forces a converted person to choose between two opposing forces (Romans 8:13), providing us His Spirit as a tool to overcome.

Show more Show less
Are You Living the Abundant Life?

Non-Christians tend to see Christianity as an utterly boring, rigid way of life. However, Jesus Christ Himself says He came to give His disciples abundant life (John 10:10). Richard Ritenbaugh reveals the big 'secret' in living the abundant life.

Show more Show less
Truly Unleavened

God has imputed righteousness to us as His Children because we are in Christ. Our state before God is unleavened provided we maintain this relationship.

Show more Show less
Amos (Part 12)

John Ritenbaugh warns that the pride of Jacob (or his offspring) coupled with the incredible ability to make tremendous technological advances, blinds Israel to its devastating moral deficit. Amos begins with a description or cataloging of the sins of Israel's enemies, followed by a harsh indictment of its own sins and a roar of wrath (or justice), followed by the encirclement by its enemies and its ultimate fall. Thankfully, after punishing His people, God will redeem them and faithfully fulfill His covenant with them. God, in His sovereignty, will do what He must to bring Abraham's seed to repentance and salvation, including allowing crisis, hardship, humiliation, and calamity. As the Israel of God, we dare not complacently take our special covenant-relationship for granted, realizing that His plumbline (a combination of grace and law) will measure us, testing our spirituality while showing absolutely no favoritism or partiality. We need to see ourselves from God's perspective.

Show more Show less
The Weightier Matters (Part 3): Mercy

Many have a love-hate relationship with mercy: They love to receive it, but hate to give it! Here is why we should lean toward mercy in all our judgments.

Show more Show less
The Miracles of Jesus Christ: Water Into Wine (Part One)

Jesus' first miracle, turning water into wine, reveals principles of the nature of Jesus' miraculous power and God's purpose in performing such signs.

Show more Show less
Amos (Part 13)

John Ritenbaugh observes that the people to whom Amos addresses have the mistaken assumption that because they have made the covenant with God that they complacently bask in a kind of divine favoritism—God's country, God's people, God's church. God's holy and spiritual law, describing and defining His standard of holiness, His character, nature, or essence, serves as the template into which our character needs to be formed or molded. The combination of the redeeming and the law-giving aspects of God's nature determines the plumb line against which all of us are judged. Jacob's descendents, embracing false religion (after the idolatrous, syncretistic manner of Jeroboam I) have severely placed a strain upon God's patience. As members of the Israel of God, we must assiduously measure up to God's plumb line, insisting upon positive moral purity in all our thoughts and behaviors, avoiding sin by doing good—a course that will put us totally out of sync with the rest of society—a society ripe in sin and immorality, begging for harsh correction.

Show more Show less
Amos (Part 10)

John Ritenbaugh warns the greater Church of God that since we constitute the Israel of God, the book of Amos directly applies to us. The pilgrimages to Gilgal made by the people of ancient Israel were repulsive to God because no permanent change (in terms of justice ' hating evil and loving good or righteous behavior) occurred in their lives as a result of these pilgrimages. In terms of human relationships, instead of God's Commandments and instead of the Golden Rule, Israel zealously practiced self-centered, pragmatic situation ethics- liberally mixed or syncretized with pagan religion. Unlike ceremonial religion, true religion reaches out and touches every aspect of life, making a permanent transformation or change in thought and behavior. Ceremony and sincerity cannot be considered mutually exclusive components of religion. God, totally impartial in His dealings with all people, demands a higher standard of righteous behavior from those who have consciously made a covenant with Him and are acquainted with His Law.