My Child, as you go out into the larger Christian world, you will constantly hear discussions surrounding the subject of “the law”. You have read a lot about it in your New Testament Bible also but I supposed you may not fully understand why it’s so much a big deal. I will be giving you background guidance that will lead you as you come across this debate.
When you hear the word ” the law”. It could actually refer to many things. It could mean, “the whole of the Old Testament”. In case you don’t know, some people have stopped reading the Old Testament because they feel Jesus had ditched all that is in it. That is extreme anyway.
“The Law” could also refer to the five Books of Moses. You know them, right? The Law could mean all the “do’s and don’ts” of the Old Testament. Also, The Law could mean just “the Ten Commandments”.
When they say the death and resurrection of our Lord Jesus have ended the law, you may want to ask- “which law are you talking about?” For instance, the fifth law of the Ten Commandments says- “honour thy father and thy mother”. Has Jesus ended that law? Can we now dishonour our parents? That is the reason I want to tell you about the “Justification Law”. Have you heard that before? As you go on, you may hear other terms like “Moral laws”, ” Agricultural Laws”, “Ceremonial Laws” and so on. These are sections of the law that deal with an aspect of life and conduct.
There is an aspect of the law called “the Justification Law”. A major reason Jesus died on the cross was actually to put an end to the justification law. This law has nothing to do with “Dos and don’ts”. Adam has committed enough sin to send every man to hell. And the judgement had already been pronounced. But to absolve man from that eternal death, God propounded the justification law. The first part id this law didn’t even start with Moses but with Abraham. And that is “CIRCUMCISION”.
Circumcision is the major justification law. That’s why several discourse and argument about the law in the Bible and most especially in the book of Romans is all about “circumcision”. It was a big issue in the New Testament. Some of the early believers couldn’t wrap their heads around the fact that someone can be called a child of God without being circumcised. Let me surprise you- Paul had to circumcise his disciple, Titus just so that they could let the young man be.
The second part of the justification law didn’t even start with Abraham or Moses, it started with Adam. God introduced it to Adam by directly engaging in the first act. And that is “shedding the blood of animals for the cleansing of human sins”. You remember that God clothed Adam and his wife with the skin of an animal (Genesis 3:21). God won’t get that skin except if an animal was killed. And we don’t see proof that God sun-dry the skin of the animal before putting it on them. They were covered with the blood of an animal (likely a lamb) for the covering of their nakedness (sin).
In essence, you can say that there are two main “Justification Law”. Circumcision and cleansing with animal blood.
Those two things are major things Jesus came for. He replaced Himself with the lamb that is being slaughtered. And when we believe in Him, we are circumcised in our hearts as against the cutting of the flesh. That is why the Apostles kept saying that- “we are justified by faith and not by law (circumcision and killing of animals)”. The Bible also keep saying- ” the just shall live by his faith”. That is, the justified shall keep on living by believing in the works of Christ.
So, what happens to other aspects of the law most especially the Ten Commandments? And other “Righteous Living Laws”???
Let me start by telling you that the Ten Commandments didn’t actually start with Moses. They used to be to oral laws passed down orally but became written laws in the days of Moses. They were institutionalized or constitutionalized by Moses. For instance, Joseph lived years before Moses was born, he refused to commit adultery by saying “I do not want to sin against God”. So, it has always been a sin to commit adultery. Cain who lived centuries before Moses killed his brother and he was sentenced because of it. Also, you remember that the tenth law says ” thou shall not covet your neighbour’s wife”. The wives of the King that took the wife of Abraham were rendered barren until he was forgiven.
Back to your question – what Jesus did with the ten commandments and other righteous living commandments of God are two things: “He gives us the grace (strength) to obey them easily. He also grants us immediate forgiveness if we err as against the killings of animals to beg for forgiveness.
Jesus also didn’t end tithing because it is not a justification law. In fact, tithing started with Abraham and not with Moses. Like the righteous living laws, Jesus gives us the grace to sow our tithes with joy and guarantees us the blessings thereof.