The Unchangeable Law

The Unchangeable Law

Lesson: 6
The day is coming when laws will be passed regarding worship which go against God's laws. Those who pass the laws will believe what they are doing is right and biblical. We need to know the difference between God's laws and man's laws.
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Welcome once again to 'landmarks of prophecy.' We're so thankful that you're here. And we want to welcome those who may be watching on television or on the internet and those who are here in our live albuquerque audience. And tonight we're continuing our series with a very important study. It's the topic of 'the unchangeable law.' Now, the reason that this subject is so important - and it is a prophecy subject - is because the Bible's very clear, in the last days, this beast power - I'm sure that you've heard about, is going to make a law and require the whole world to worship the image of the beast. But, right away, if you have an even elementary knowledge of the Bible, you know that worshiping images violates one of the commandments of God.

And so, we need to know how do you know the difference between the laws of the beast and the laws of God? Because Jesus said, 'the hour is coming when those who kill you will think they are worshiping God.' There'll be people who believe they're doing what is right and biblical by following the beast. And so we need to know the difference. And you'd be surprised how many people, that claim to believe in Jesus - they claim to believe the Bible - do not understand the simple truth about the law of God. Well, as we always do, we're going to use a Bible story, sort of a springboard, into this subject. The Bible is largely a history book and a story book and these stories help us understand the theology.

If you look in your Bible in Daniel chapter 6, you'll recognize the story there. It's about Daniel. One of the great stories we often save for the children, 'Daniel in the lion's den.' See, after the Babylonian kingdom fell to the persians, the new persian king, darius, was so impressed with Daniel's ability and his wonderful spirit he had that he thought about making him the prime minister of his new kingdom. Well, you can imagine that didn't go over very well with the other members of darius' cabinet because Daniel was a former servant of Nebuchadnezzar - that was their enemy. Daniel was a former captive from among the Israelites, why would the King want to promote somebody, who was both a foreigner and a member of the former kingdom, to be the new prime minister? Darius was convinced.

He said, 'Daniel is an honest man.' And he needed honest people in government, they're hard to find. And he said - he thought about setting him over the whole kingdom - to entrust him to be the prime minister. Well that really bothered the enemies of Daniel and they said, 'we've got to get rid of this guy because how are we going to extort money, how are we going to do our underhanded deals with this honest jew watching us all the time? So they had spies follow him around to see if they could catch him doing something wrong. They said, 'he's got skeletons in his closet. Let's watch him.

' But he was faithful in everything he did. Finally they got together and said, 'we're not going to find anything against Daniel unless we find it on religious grounds because he's a very religious man. So they came up with a plot. They went to king darius and they said, 'your highness, it's a new kingdom. We've conquered several other empires.

In order to get everyone together, the best way to do that is through common worship.' Now that's true. The devil often does that. When you can't get people to join together because of common language or common culture, common religion is often the best way to do it. And so they said, 'if you make a law - it doesn't have to last long, just thirty days - that nobody worships any God except for you. That'll solidify the Kingdom.

' That's why the caesars often said they were God. And alexander the great even had himself recognized as a deity. They all tried to do it to weld the Kingdom together. Will the beast do that in the last days? That's what it says. So the King, convinced that this would be good - you can read in Daniel 6:8 - he signed the decree.

You can't pray to any God or man for thirty days and, by the way, there's a penalty. If you break it you go to the lion's den. But the King never dreamed anybody would break it and he didn't realize what they were up to, so he signed it and it says, 'according to the law of the medes and the persians which does not alter.' Once you sign the King's law, you can't change it. So, the Bible - this is one of the great verses in the Bible - Daniel 6, verse 10, "now when Daniel knew that the writing was signed, he went into his house; and his windows being open in his chamber toward Jerusalem, he kneeled upon his knees three times a day, and prayed, and gave thanks before his God," - did Daniel know what the penalty was for this law? It says he knew about it and he's still thanking God and he's praying. He could've stood in his window and prayed and just looked like he was smelling the breeze and watching the birds, but he actually got down and knelt so they'd know that he was praying, and he prayed out loud - because they knew what he prayed because he gave thanks.

He did nothing to hide his light under a bush but he thought, 'I'm not going to hide my faith for anybody.' And so he opened his windows. Well, soon, these enemies, they went to the King and they said, 'you know that law that you signed?' the King said, 'yeah, law of the medes and the persians that cannot change.' They said, 'well, there's someone in your kingdom that just doesn't care about your law. It's Daniel. He's praying three times a day.' King darius said, 'oh, no.' The Bible says he labored till the going down of the sun to deliver Daniel, but he couldn't because he couldn't change his own law. So right about the going down of the sun, he had Daniel brought to the lion's den.

Daniel says the King spoke to Daniel and he put him in the lion's den and he said, "your God, whom you serve continually, he will deliver you." And they put a stone over the lion's den and they sealed it with a government seal. Now, before I go any farther, can you think of someone else in the Bible that was turned over because of religious law? Jesus. Did they have spies following Jesus around? Was Jesus put in a tomb even though he was innocent? Was there a seal and a stone? Did Jesus come out alive? Daniel's a type of Christ, in the Bible. And then, the next day, it tells us that early in the morning the King came to the tomb and he said - they rolled away the stone - 'Daniel, has your God that you serve continually, been able to deliver you from the lions?' And Daniel said, 'my God has sent an angel and shut the lion's mouth.' And no form of harm or hurt was on Daniel, the Bible says, because he believed in his God. Well, he had an interesting way of believing.

He showed his belief, didn't he? That's what it says, he believed in God. Now, this story tells us that Daniel said there are Ten Commandments and one commandment says 'thou shalt not have other Gods before me' - not even king darius. Not even for thirty days. And he was willing to die rather than disobey. What kind of faith and determination do God's people need in the last days? Is there going to be a law that says 'he that does not worship the beast and his image should be killed?' First, they can't buy or sell.

But, ultimately, it says they should be killed. And worshiping the beast and his image is going to require breaking one of God's commandments. Do you love the Lord and His Word so much that you would rather die - rather go hungry - than disobey? We've all heard through history about people that had faith and even when threatened by armies and guns, they would not curse the Lord. They would not violate their conscience. Even over in iraq right now there are Christians that are being told by isis, 'you either renounce your faith or we will kill you.

' And sometimes they've been asked, 'renounce your faith or we will kill your children in front of you.' This is happening still in the world today. How much do you love the Lord? How much do you trust the Lord? Is it okay to disobey even for a little while? This is a test that we need to know that the Ten Commandments are not multiple choice and that's our subject. Question #1: can God's moral law be amended or repealed? Answer: Jesus tells us in Luke , verse 17, he says, "and it is easier for heaven and earth to" - what? Pass away. "Pass away than one tittle of the law to fail." That's a Hebrew term. It's talking about the little crossing of a 't' - it's even smaller than the crossing of a 't' - even the slightest thing - a jot or a tittle - it's like a little period or a little crossing of the 't.

' It says heaven and earth will pass away before even that much of the law passes away. You can also read in psalm 89, verse 34. God said, "my covenant will I not break, nor alter the thing that is gone out of my lips." God is not going to break his covenant. It's forever and ever. And then you have one more in psalm 111, verses 7 and 8.

And this is just to emphasize the eternal, unchanging nature of God's law. Psalm 111, verses 7 and 8, "all of his commandments are sure. They stand fast forever and ever." So the Bible's very clear that the law of God is something that is eternal and it is going to last forever. One more - Malachi chapter 3, verse 6, it says, "for I am the Lord. I change not.

" God does not change. Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever. So now when we think about God's law, and what we're specifically talking about in this presentation, is the ten commandment law of God. This is something - I want you to keep in mind - 'all things that were made were made by him.' - Who's the 'him?' Jesus - 'and without him was not anything made that was made.' Everything that was made, was made by Christ. So when it tells us that the hand of God wrote, in these tables of stone, His Word, that's the same hand and finger of God that was writing on the dust of the temple floor when they caught that woman in adultery.

It might have even been the same hand that wrote judgment on the halls of Babylon. And so, when God writes something and he - with his arc-welding finger etches in stone - that's something that he intends to be permanent. How could God show that something is more permanent than when he gathers a whole nation together and he says, 'I am going to audibly speak my will to you.' - The law of God is the will of God - 'I am going to write it for you. I am going to write it in stone.' And keep in mind, the Ten Commandments did not suddenly appear in Exodus. The Ten Commandments have always existed because they are a reflection of God's nature? How do I know that? When the woman - potiphar's wife - tempted Joseph to commit adultery - in the book of Genesis - Joseph said, 'I can't do that.

That's a sin.' Did they know, even in Genesis, that adultery was a sin? When cain killed abel, God told him, 'sin lies at your door.' And sin is the breaking of God's law. Was murder a sin even in the Garden of Eden? Or did murder - murder wasn't a sin until God wrote it down at Mount Sinai. Of course it was. Was it wrong to lie all the way from the beginning? And so, see, the Ten Commandments go all the way back. God simply codified it so that they would all know - very clear - no misunderstanding - approximately three hundred words, 'this is my perfect will.

' That law is comprehensive for all man. It's not for one nation. It's for people everywhere. Now the reason that I'm even taking time for this lesson - I'm, frankly, sad that I need to. There was a day when there was no Christian that would have any problem with the Ten Commandments, but there is a fairly recent teaching, maybe in the last eighty years, that has become popular, that, because there were certain laws nailed to the cross, that they think the Ten Commandments were done away with when Jesus died on the cross.

But think about how strange that would be. Does that mean it's okay to break the Ten Commandments? When you do away with the law of God, you're doing away with the nature of God. Now if you look in your lesson you'll see, for instance, the Bible says God is good. Do you know the Bible says, also, the law is good. The Bible tells us that God is holy.

The Bible also says that the law is holy. God is just. The law is just. And these references are there - Romans 7:12 - so forth - God is perfect - Matthew 5:48 - it says the law is perfect. God is love - we all know that - the law is love.

You can read where it says that God is righteous. God is truth. God is pure. God is spiritual. God is unchangeable.

God is eternal. These are also all the same characteristics of the law. So we've got to be very careful about trying to do away with the law because it represents the very nature of God. Jesus was the word became flesh. Christ said, 'he that hears these words of mine is building on a" - what? Rock.

"Wise man building on the rock." What were the Ten Commandments written on? Rock. If there are any words important, it would be the words of God engraven in stone. Christ was the embodiment of the word. His life was obedience to the law of God. And then, as Christians, he says, 'follow me.

' The apostle said that we should set him before us as our example and walk as he walked. He wants us to live new lives as new creatures, right? You know, I was reminded of an amazing fact since I came to this seminar. Thirty-five miles or so south of albuquerque, in los lunas, they've got what they call 'the decalogue stone.' Now you here, how many of you have heard that? I see a number of hands here. I talked to someone in albuquerque he said, 'I've never heard about that.' There's a giant boulder down there - you can actually get a permit from - they'll - I guess it's the bureau of land management or whoever - to go look at it. It actually was vandalized once, but it is a real mystery because, as far back as they know, and the native Americans living in the area confirm before any europeans came that stone was there.

And it is written with - in paleo-Hebrew - a primitive form of Hebrew - an abbreviated form of the Ten Commandments - and the name yahweh appears three times on the stone. But it's a very ancient stone and so some have thought, 'did a group of jews, a long time ago, make it to this part of the country?' My theory would be that everybody knew God's law and many of the early Americans knew it and that might be why it's an abbreviated version. And some of them still understood the Hebrew or the semitic writing. But that's very interesting. You've got your own Ten Commandments right here in New Mexico.

This is a summarized version of it. Now, according to the Bible, what is sin? I mean, Jesus came to save us from sin. What is it that he's saving us from? John 3, verse 4. The Bible says, "sin is the transgression of" - what? - "Of the law." Sin is - it's like a dictionary definition: sin is the breaking of or the transgression of the law. Romans 3:20 said, "by the law is the knowledge of sin.

" We don't really know what sin is except by the law. God's law reveals what sin is. I told you, one of our questions that came in earlier, they said, 'is it possible to sin without breaking the Ten Commandments?' I said, 'not really, because virtually any sin that you could think of, I could find one of the Ten Commandments that would somehow be the umbrella for that category of sin. In fact, Jesus, when he was tempted three times in the wilderness, those three temptations really summarized all the categories of temptation that we face. And so, it's not that complicated.

God, he can be summed up in 'love.' Sin can be summed up in 'selfishness.' Now the purpose for the law though, and this is a very important point I want to emphasize, is not to save us. The Bible says that the purpose of the law is to simply show us our need of salvation. Now I'm going to just illustrate this. Bear with me for a moment. Okay.

Now, I just did something to change my appearance. I don't see anything different. You see something different. Would it distract you if I went through the rest of the program like this? It would. There's probably some kids - I know there's kids that are coming in and watching and they're elbowing their folks and saying, 'mom, Pastor Doug's got the Mark!' Alright.

I don't see anything wrong. So what do I need? Ah, how convenient. So I feel fine. I don't see there's a problem. I look in this device and I go, 'ew!' It really is the first time I looked.

That's kind of embarrassing. So, since the mirror showed me I've got a problem, it obviously should be the means of removing the problem, right? So if I just whack myself in the head with the mirror it'll all go away? Would that fix it? If I rubbed the mirror on the Mark or the tape, will that take it away? Is the function of the mirror to wash away the Mark? No, it's simply to make me aware that there's a problem. What do I need to do if I've got a Mark? Let's just pretend this is dirt for a second and not duct tape. Once I did this illustration and I wasn't thinking and I grabbed a permanent Marker. And then I went to wash it off - I rubbed a red Mark on my head by the time it came off.

If - once you realize you've got dirt on your face, then you need something else to wash away - what do you think this represents? The blood of Jesus. And what would this represent? The law. Yeah, I specifically used blue. Some say the law - blue is a symbol of obedience. And so this shows us the problem, but it's not supposed to take the problem away.

You are not saved by keeping the law. The law doesn't save you from anything. The law is there to show us our need of salvation. But then if I take this and use the blood, it takes away the sin. Now I don't know, it's kind of a miracle how that works.

You can't explain it. I think it was - billy Sunday used to say, 'I don't understand how a black cow can eat green grass and make white milk and yellow butter, but I still enjoy ice cream.' You don't have to know how it all works - how the blood of Jesus can wash away sin - just know it does work. You take things by faith every day. Now the reason I mention this, it says in the book of James, 'whoever looks into the perfect law that gives liberty and continues therein, being not just a hearer but a doer of the word, this man will be blessed.' The law of God is compared to a mirror. It's not supposed to take away our sin, it's supposed to show us our need.

Then you go to Jesus for cleansing. But, if - if it's not a sin to break the law - if there's no law, there's no sin, right? The Bible says, 'where there is no law there is no transgression.' That's what Paul said. Where there's no law, there's no transgression. So if there is no law, there's no transgression. If there's no sin, then who needs a Savior? Can you see why the devil would be attacking the law? Because if there's no law, there's no sin.

If there's no sin, you don't need Jesus. And so that's the logic behind it. Question #3: to what law does 1 John chapter 3, verse 4, we just read sin is the transgression of the law. What law is John referring to? Paul tells us in Romans chapter , verse 7. He said, 'I had not known sin but by the law: for I had not known lust, except the law had said, 'thou shalt not covet.

'" Here he's quoting from the Ten Commandments, isn't he? He's saying, 'I become aware of what my sin is by looking at the law.' Now, is it just me or will you agree that in the last generation in North America, morals have changed? Here's a time magazine article - it's actually several years old but I - it just shocked me when I saw it. 'Infidelity - it may be in our genes.' And then they go on to say, 'you know, because we share dna with chimpanzees and they're not always monogamous, then we can't blame ourselves if we're not faithful to our spouses because, after all, it's in our genes. Wow, that's where that leads. And I think I referred to this in one of our earlier presentations - u.s. News and world report says "every hundred hours more youth die in the street" - in gang fighting -" than were killed in the persian gulf warfare.

" You just think about the violence. 'The average 18-year-old' - another statistic here - 'in his lifetime, has witnessed approximately 200,000 violent acts, including 40,000 murders on television.' And it's not just the cowboy and indian games - movies and things. They've gotten so much more violent than the cops and robbers and things. It seems like every new production has to exceed the one before it in gore, in blood, in how grisly they are. And it's not just the television and the movies, it's the games.

And we're kidding ourselves if we don't think it has an effect. You become like what you behold. We are changed by beholding and, if we're surrounded by a culture that is just drowning in immorality, that is going to have an effect on the society. Some of you remember a few years ago, a young man who had become addicted to a game, 'grand theft auto' - that involves killing policemen. One day - he would play this game for days without hardly coming up for air.

He stole a car. When the police pulled him over he - he was actually brought into the station - he pulled one of the policemen's guns and he shot the policeman and he finally said, 'well, you know, it just seemed like - that's the world I was living in.' And we have to be careful - those of us who are parents - the games your kids are playing. Do you know what they're doing? It's all affecting the morals, all around us. Question #4: did Jesus keep the Ten Commandments? Now what is a Christian? A Christian is a follower of Christ and his teachings, right? He is our example. What did Christ say? John 15, verse 10.

He said, "I have" - what? - "I have kept my father's commandments. And I abide in his love." You know, an interesting illustration that I heard a number of years ago was regarding shrimp. Shrimp that live out in the ocean get battered by the waves. You know they often live not too far from the surface, and as the tides go in and out and the waves splash them in the storms, they get spun around - they're little things and some marine biologists were wondering, 'well how do they know which end is up?' And they found out that shrimp actually, every time they molt and they slough off their old skin and they grow a new skin like they all - you know, crustaceans do - and they go down to the bottom of the sand and, with their little hands, they pick up a stone and they stick it in a crack in their heads and it's called a 'status stone' or a 'stone of standing.' And that helps them know which end is up when they're caught in these swirling currents. They all automatically know how to right themselves when they're washed around because, in the turbulence, this stone - the little gravitational pull on that rock - gives them their direction.

So, a marine biologist wanted to do a test one day and he had this large aquarium full of shrimp and instead of putting sand on the bottom, he put all these small iron filings - little shrivels of iron - and what happened was, when they sloughed off their skin, they went down, as they always do, to the bottom. There was no sand so they took a little piece of iron, they put it and stuck it in the little crack in their head where the status stone goes, and then he placed a large electromagnetic bar above the aquarium and flipped on the electricity. Just like that all the shrimp inverted and began to swim upside down. They thought up was down and down was up and they all thought everything was fine because everyone else was doing it. So then, the marine biologist reached into another aquarium and he got a normal shrimp that had his normal piece of sand and he dropped him in with the other shrimp and wondered if he would follow the crowd.

He looked around and he thought, 'what in the world is wrong with all these guys?' But he kept swimming right side up. Can you imagine the conversation between the other upside-down shrimp? They thought, 'oh, who does this guy think he is?' 'What's wrong with this guy?' They all thought this little shrimp was crazy, but they actually had the wrong rock in their head, didn't they? You know, we're being swirled around - very turbulent morals in our society. Things are changing. We've got to have - 'thy word I have hidden in my heart that I might not sin.' We need to have the law of God in our heads and in our hearts or we're going to get mixed up in this culture, amen? Question #5: how many people have sinned? Romans 3:23, "for all have sinned," - we've all broken God's law - "and come short of the glory of God." Question #6: what is the punishment for living a life of sin? It's pretty serious. Sin is a deadly, contagious disease and God has to use drastic measures.

We've seen in the news lately what happened when someone even thought someone else might have ebola because it's a deadly disease. Roughly 50 - 60% - depending on what country you're in when you get it - that they quickly quarantine people. Well, sin is even more deadly than ebola and so God says we can't allow it to spread through the universe. The penalty is death, unless we get a transfusion of the blood of Jesus, we're in trouble. And so that's very clear.

By the way, I didn't put that up, Romans 6:23, "the wages of sin is death." You all know that. Question #7: some say the Ten Commandments are not binding for new testament Christians. Have you heard that before? 'That's the old covenant.' - What does Jesus say about this? Matthew 19, verse 17, he said, "if thou wilt enter into life, keep the commandments." Well, obviously, for a starting point, he would be talking about the Ten Commandments. You can read in John 14, verse , Jesus said, "if you love me, keep my commandments." Christ said, 'think not that I have come to change the law and the prophets. I have not come to change, but to fulfill.

' Now what does it mean when Jesus said he came to fulfill the law? It means 'to fill it full.' It doesn't mean to do away with. One example for that would be - a lot of pastors say today, 'we don't have to keep the Ten Commandments anymore because Jesus fulfilled the law.' Well what does fulfill mean? When Christ came to John the baptist to be baptized, John said to Jesus, 'no, you need to baptize me because you're the Messiah.' And Jesus said, 'no, John allow it to be this way now, for thus it becomes us to fulfill all righteousness.' So when Jesus said fulfill all righteousness, does that mean do away with all righteousness? Some people read that verse, 'think not that I have come to destroy the law' - they change it where Jesus says, 'think not that I've come to destroy the law, I've actually come to do away with it.' That wouldn't make any sense. He obviously wants us to keep the Ten Commandments. And so he said 'if you love me, keep my commandments.' It's - this is a prophecy subject - Revelation 22:14 - it says, "blessed are they that do his commandments that they might enter through the gates of the city and eat from the Tree of Life." Now, why am I teaching this? Because I want to be blessed and I want you to be blessed. You know, the Lord said, 'whosoever, therefore, shall break one of the least of these commandments' - I'm back in Matthew chapter 5 - 'and teach others to do so, he will be called least in the Kingdom of heaven.

' That doesn't mean people who are breaking it and teaching others to break it will be in the Kingdom. That means those in the Kingdom will call that person the very lowest individual. Did you get that? He said, 'whosoever shall teach others to break even the least of these commandments - if they'll break it and teach others to break it, they'll be spoken of as least in the Kingdom of heaven. You look through the Ten Commandments, you figure out whichever one is the least important, he said, 'if you're breaking that and teaching others to break that, those in the Kingdom of heaven think that's the lowest thing. 'But' - Jesus went on - 'whoever shall do and teach it will be called great in the Kingdom of heaven.

' So I'm just trying to do what Jesus said. He said we ought to do it and we ought to teach it, amen? Revelation 14 - now, do you know if you look in Revelation 13, what does that chapter talk about? Do you remember? Revelation 13 talks about the beast and it says that he's going to try and make people worship the laws of the beast. You go to Revelation 14, it talks about Jesus coming there and it says, 'here is the patience of the saints: here are they that" - do what? - "They that keep the commandments of God and they have the testimony of Jesus." They have the faith of Jesus. Question #8: how is it possible to keep the commandments? Now, sin is the transgression of the law. I don't know about you, but I am tempted every day.

Am I alone? Every day I have opportunities to do the wrong thing. And every day I have opportunities to follow Jesus and make the right decision. Is it possible for us to do what God asks us to do? Romans 8, verse 3, "God sending his own son in the likeness of sinful flesh condemned sin in the flesh: that the righteousness of the law might be fulfilled in us which walk not after the flesh, but the Spirit." It is possible. Philippians 1, verse 6, "he which hath begun a good work in you will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ." We can be able to consistently be able to obey the Lord and to follow His Word. You know, a few years ago - matter of fact, John lomacang was with me, - we were doing a debate - friendly debate on television with John and I and two other ministers and the subject of the debate was the law of God.

And the ministers were saying that the Ten Commandments were part of the old covenant and nobody can really keep the law and God didn't expect us to. Of course, I wanted to ask them, 'well have you pointed to the seventh commandment and told your wife it's impossible to keep that?' I didn't say that, but I was thinking about that. And so, I asked, 'can the devil tempt us to sin?' They said, 'well, of course.' And I said, 'so you believe the devil has the power to get us to sin, but you don't believe that God has the power to keep us from sin? So, in effect, you're saying your devil is more powerful than your God.' Isn't what that would - I mean, that's where that goes. How much can I do through Christ? Without him how much can we do? Nothing. Through Christ all things are possible.

Can the Lord help an alcoholic stop drinking? Can the Lord save someone from drugs and different addictions and eating disorders and - I can't name a sin - and I don't think you can either - can't think of a sin that God has not helped somebody get the victory over. You can do all things through Christ. And the church needs to hear this message more - that Jesus did not come to save us with and in our sin, he came to save us from our sin because sin is what brings all the problems into our life and he came to give us an abundant life. He wants us to have joy, he wants us to have peace. And it is possible for us to be new creatures.

Philippians - and I think I touched on this just a moment ago - Philippians 4:13, "I can do" - how much? - "All things through Christ which strengtheneth me." We can do everything through Jesus, friends. I remember - some people think that what the Lord just wants us to do - Christians are just supposed to sin a little less than other people. He just wants us to cut down on the frequency. This policeman saw this guy in a red convertible - he was just some young jet-setter and he just went - slowed down at the stop sign and just went careening on through and the policeman saw him, turned on his lights, went up to the guy, and pulled him over. And the guy was having a fit.

He said, 'oh, - what's the problem?' He said, 'I just watched you. You just ran right through that stop sign.' He said, 'I slowed down. It's the same thing. I mean, I slowed down, I looked - it's the same thing as stopping.' And the policeman said, 'no, you're supposed to stop.' He said, 'oh, slow down, stop - it's the same thing.' He said, 'there was no danger here.' The policeman had, evidentially, had a long day and too much coffee because he snapped and he pulled out his billy club and he started to bat the guy on the head. He said, 'do you want me to slow down or stop?' Is there a difference? the Lord wants us to be new creatures.

Question #9: what is the old covenant, and why did it fail? Alright, first let's look and find out what that was. You go to Deuteronomy chapter 4, verse 13 and you'll find the old covenant mentioned there. "And he declared unto you his covenant, which he commanded you to perform, even" - how many? - "Ten Commandments; and he wrote them upon two tables of stone." And so, it tells us that the old covenant was the Ten Commandments, written on these two tables of stone - written by the finger of God. Now, right after the Lord made the covenant with the people - you know what a covenant is - it's an agreement. God spoke the Ten Commandments there in Exodus 20.

Moses later brings down the written copy, but while he's up on the hill getting the Ten Commandments, what do the children of Israel do? They make a golden calf. They had just told the Lord, in Exodus 20, 'all the Lord has said, we will do.' This is an agreement. When you make a contract with somebody, first, before you write it down, you have a verbal agreement. You say, 'how about this? That? Let's talk about the terms. Okay, got a deal, let's write it up and sign it.

' Right? You're selling a car, whatever it is. So you write it up - first you agree - write it up - you sign it. First he had the verbal agreement with them. They said, 'all the Lord has said, we will do.' And while Moses was getting the written copy, they got tired of waiting, made a golden calf, and they probably broke several commandments in that party that they had. And so the Bible says, in Hebrews 8, verse 8, "for finding fault with them," - now, was the fault of the old covenant with the covenant and the law or was it with the people who made a promise? You see, the new covenant is based on better promises.

The old covenant was based on the promise of the people. 'All the Lord has said, we will do it.' The new covenant is based on the promise of the Lord. He says, 'I will write my law in their hearts.' Matter of fact, that's our next question. I get excited and I rush ahead of the lesson. Question #10: upon which law is the new covenant based? Answer: it says in Hebrews 8, verse 10, "for this is the covenant that I will make.

..saith the Lord; I will put my laws into their mind, and write them in their hearts." And so, God says he's going to put the law where? In the heart. He says, 'I'm going to write a different law in their heart?' It's not a different law - same law, different place. Same law, not their promises, his promise. Who spoke the first law? God did. Was the problem with the law or with the people? I've heard people say - I've heard pastors say, 'he gave them the Ten Commandments just to prove they couldn't do it.

' Well, that would kind of be like a parent saying, 'I want you to change that light bulb.' And the little kid's trying to reach up there and change it and he says, 'ha! See, you couldn't do it.' I mean, that wouldn't be very nice - to tell people, 'I want you to obey a law I know you can't obey, and then I'm going to punish you for not obeying it.' Does God ever command anyone to do something without giving them the power to do what he's asked them to do? Inherent in every command of God, is built the power to perform what he's asking. That is a simple - if God says, 'I want you to walk across that ocean there,' don't argue. You'll either walk on water like Peter, or he'll part the ocean. I mean, when God asks you to do something, you do it. And that's called obedience.

And we're living in an age where, even in some churches, they're acting like obedience is legalism. Obedience is not legalism. The devil is trying to intimidate Christians. As soon as you talk about the law, you know what you get called? A dirty word among Christians, legalist, pharisee. And so what happened is people in the church have been so intimated by those terms, the pendulum has swung - and there are legalists and pharisees in the church.

I'm not saying that's not a problem sometimes, but the devil has so intimidated people that the pendulum has swung to the other side and now everybody is so afraid to be accused of being a pharisee or legalist, nobody talks about the law. Jesus did. Do you know there was a time in North America - when I was in school - I used to go to public school - we had the Ten Commandments on the wall in public - any of you remember that? We used to pray and now - there's a movement that's been going on for years to try to make the United States - I believe in separation of church and state and our founders, what they meant by that was that we are not supposed to have a state religion. But the founders did not intend that we were a people without morals. Roger williams, he had the best understanding of this.

He said, 'the Ten Commandments are on two tables of stone because the first six commandments represent - I'm sorry, first four commandments represent our relationship to God. The last six commandments represent our relationship to our fellow man. He said the government should never interfere with those first four commandments. You decide what the name of your God is, how to worship him, what he looks like - that's all between you and God. The last six commandments the government must enforce.

Respecting of property, honesty, respect for the marriage, parental authority - all these things - morality? All these things need to be respected but now they're acting like anything that has any twinge of any kind of religious morals has to be separated from our lives. That is not what our founders intended. The whole law is summarized, really, in love. Question #11: doesn't living under grace, by faith, make keeping God's law non-essential?' Have you heard that before? 'We don't need the law now, we live under grace.' Well, it's because we live under grace he gives us grace to obey. The whole purpose of living a life of faith is 'I have faith that he can help me be a new creature.

' But James said, 'you show me your faith without your works; I'll show you my faith by my works.' So what's the answer? Does living under grace mean keeping God's law is non-essential? Romans 6:15, "what then? Shall we sin because we are not under the law, but under grace?" - What does he say? - "God forbid." And again, in Romans 3, verse 31, "do we then make void the law through faith?" - Again he uses that phrase - "God forbid: yeah we establish the law." Paul says, in Romans chapter 2, verse 13 - it's not the hearers of the law that will be just before God, but the doers of the law will be justified. That's what Paul said. Question #12: are people saved by keeping the law? You remember my illustration? Is anyone saved by keeping the law? No. Ephesians 2, verses 8 and 9 - it says very clearly, "for by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: not of works, lest any man should boast." We're not saved by our obedience. But if we love the Lord, we'll want to obey him.

Matter of fact, what's the first commandment? Thou shalt not have other Gods before me, right? Do you know that's actually not the whole thing. Technically, it says, 'God spoke all these words saying' - here's where the engraving began: 'I am the Lord, your God, that brought you out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of bondage. Thou shalt not have other Gods before me.' Why did God start with that preamble? 'I am the God who saved you from slavery.' Do you realize, salvation came first? But, yes, we're still supposed to keep - grace does not abolish obedience to the law. You know, if you go to the billy graham evangelistic association website, he answers questions there. I just copied this off the website because dr.

Graham still has this right. Question: does God still expect us to keep the Ten Commandments? Answer: "the Ten Commandments are just as valid today as when God gave them to Moses over ,000 year ago. Jesus said, 'I tell you the truth, until heaven and earth disappear, not the smallest letter, not the least stroke of a pen, will by any means disappear from the law.'" (Matthew 5:18) and he's got a number of other statements like that. There's not a lot of preachers that are still saying that. They're all saying, 'we're not under the law.

' And that is a really strange thing because it makes it sound like sin is being endorsed. Question #13: what motivates a person to obey God's law? What's the reason? I've got several verses here, so stay with me. Romans 13, verse 10, "therefore love is the fulfilling of the law." Now does love fulfilling the law mean that you don't have to keep it anymore? No, it means that if I love God, I'm not going to worship other Gods. If I love my fellow man, am I going to steal from him or kill him or covet what he has? See, the - it's like you've got two arms. You've got ten fingers.

God is love, okay? On one hand you've got love for your fellow man - I'd actually have to have six fingers on this hand and four on this one - love for your fellow man and love for God. The first four commandments deal with love for the Lord. What are the Greek commandments? 'Love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, mind, soul, and strength. Love your neighbor as yourself.' The cross deals with two love relationships. We have problems with love.

We have problems loving God - it's this vertical love relationship. We have problems loving each other - and that's what the cross is all about. It's teaching us love God and love your neighbor. It's all summarized in the Ten Commandments. Matthew chapter 22, verses 37 through 39.

Jesus said, "thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind." You can also read in 1 John 5:3, "this is the love of God, that we keep his commandments." People say, 'I love you, Lord. I love you, Lord.' They don't obey him. Is that love? You've probably all heard stories about people that will beat their spouse. Then they're sorry afterwards - 'but I really love you.' They beat them again and say, 'oh, but I really love you.' A little while goes by and then they beat them again. Well, you begin to wonder, is that love? You know, if you're going to really love somebody, you show them that you love them.

God so loved the world that he showed us. He gave his son. Question #14: can I be a true Christian without keeping his commandments? Let the Bible speak for itself. John 2, verses 3 and 4, "and hereby do we know that we know him," - this is the apostle John - "if we keep his commandments." And someone'll say, 'oh, it's just talking about the commandments about love.' Well, that will include the Ten Commandments then because they deal - they're all about love. And again, he goes on to say, "he that says I know him and keeps not his commandments is" - what? A liar.

You know, I actually know pastors that used to have the Ten Commandments up in their church that pulled them off the wall. They said, 'we don't want to look legalistic.' Something is changing in Christianity. What's happening in our society gradually affects the church. But I think if we're going to be ready for what's coming, friends, we need an old-fashioned faith in the Word of God that some things - heaven and earth will pass away - some things do not change and God's law is for everybody. Question #15: are there some old testament laws no longer binding upon new testament Christians? Yes, and it tells you which ones they are.

You can read in Ephesians 2:15, "having abolished the law of commandments contained in ordinances." And it explains what these things are. This is talking about your, like, your yearly Sabbaths, meat offerings, drink offerings. It's talking about things like the passover ceremonies, circumcision. These are all ceremonial laws. The Ten Commandments are of an eternal nature.

Now, don't forget this: the Ten Commandments, written by God's finger. Ceremonial law, written by Moses. Ten Commandments, spoken by God's voice. Ceremonial law, spoken by Moses with the voice of other Judges. They are two completely distinct or separate laws.

And so the laws that were nailed to the cross were the ceremonial laws, not the Ten Commandments, they're for everybody. When Jesus died on the cross and the veil ripped in the temple, the whole sacrificial system and the ceremonial laws were all done away with. They didn't do away with the Ten Commandments. Question #16: who does the devil especially hate? Revelation 12, verse 17, it says "the dragon" - who is that? That's satan - "was wroth" - that means he's angry - "with the woman," - who's the woman? The church. "And went to make war with the remnant of her seed" - now here are the two characteristics - "which keep the commandments of God and have the testimony of Jesus.

" So how does Revelation - this is a prophecy study - how does Revelation identify - what is one of the unique characteristics of God's people in the last days? Keeps the commandments of God and has the testimony of Jesus Christ. And who's angry? God is angry at them, or the devil is angry at them? That means he's going to try and do everything he can to stop that or prevent it. You know, here's a good rule of thumb: if it's something that makes the devil mad, you probably should do it. Isn't that pretty safe to say? Now, none of us are thinking, 'oh, I don't want the devil's wrath. I don't want any extra attention from the devil.

' But what would you rather have, the sadness of God or the anger of the devil? So make your choice. Question #17: what are some of the glorious rewards of keeping God's law? Answers: it says in John 15, verse 11, "these things I have spoken unto you that my joy might remain in you, and that your joy might be full." You know, as I present the law of God, we all experience a little bit of conviction, because you look in the mirror and you go, 'oh, I didn't want to hear this about the law because, you know, maybe I'm having some problems with some of the issues there. Maybe you haven't been totally honest or maybe you have something you borrowed and haven't returned yet or whatever it might be. Maybe there are other Gods in your life. And so we all experience conviction.

That's a good thing. Because when you humble yourself to God, you come, and you confess your sin, he washes away your sin. He gives you a new heart and then you have joy. But you're never going to have joy. The Bible says, 'there is no peace for the wicked.

' You'll never have joy while you deliberately go down that road of disobedience. Proverbs 29, verse 18 - this is as simple as it gets. How can you misunderstand this one? "He that keeps the law, happy is he." Anyone here want to be happy? The Bible says there's joy, there's blessing, there's happiness, there's abundance - this doesn't come from disobedience, it comes from trusting the Lord and obeying him. And that's what I want to do. That's where I want to be.

Furthermore, psalm 119, verse , it says - not any kind of peace but what kind of peace? "Great peace have they which love thy law: and nothing shall offend them." Don't you want to have that kind of peace. When you say, 'Lord' - and, you know, if you're struggling, as we all do, you just tell the Lord, 'Lord, I want to obey you. I want to be your child. I want to be willing to do your will.' You know, God sends this message to us because he wants to save us, but he can't force us. Back in 1995, a young man did something awful - just immature jealousy.

There were a couple that were parked out in an isolated spot in a car and, I guess this young man - allen - andrew allen cook - felt jilted, but he shot to death the young college student and the girl and nobody knew what happened. It was a mystery. The fbi got involved. They couldn't figure out who did it or who was responsible. But at one point the bureau began to - bureau of investigation in Georgia - began to ask some questions and they called a guy named John cook and they said, 'could you have your son andrew give us a call? We want to ask him some questions to see if he knows anything about that murder that took place.

' And so John called his son and he said, 'andrew, is there - the bureau of investigation in Georgia is wanting to ask you some questions about that murder.' And he said, 'yeah, dad, I did it.' Now, I didn't tell you that his father was an fbi agent. They had no evidence on him. There were no witnesses. The only one who knew was The Father. The Father was a Christian - loved his son.

He had to make a decision. He knew he'd get the death penalty. And he said, 'do I put the law above the love for my son?' And he realized there is no love if there isn't law. And what about the parents that lost their children. And he said, 'son, you know what I have to do.

' The primary witness during that trial was John cook, witnessing against his son that he desperately loved. And in 2013 andrew was executed for his murders. God wants to save you. He's desperate to save you, but he also is a just God and he cannot save you if you will not come to him and ask him to save you from your sins. He wants to save you from your disobedience.

He wants to give you a new power and a new heart. How many of you would like to have that power to be a new creature - to have a life of victory? Don't doubt what God can do. If you fall, don't give up, he'll help you. And I want to pray with you. But before we do, John's going to come out and sing for us.

And then, I want you to be praying in your heart and say, 'Lord, search me. If there's anything in my life that needs changing, show me what that is. Transform me. Help me not just be a hearer but a doer of Your Word. We'll pray that you experience miracles of God's power in your life.

There is a place of quiet rest, near to the heart of God. A place where sin cannot molest, near to the heart of God. O Jesus blessed redeemer, sent from the heart of God. Hold us who wait before thee, near to the heart of God. Amen.

Thank you so much, John and kelly. Would you pay so much to save something that couldn't be saved? You know, the Lord has not only paid for the right to give you everlasting life, he's made it entirely possible. He knows that without his forgiveness, that we're doomed - because he is a just God. He's not only a father, he's a judge. And unless he looks down on us and he sees that robe of righteousness of his own son - unless we have come to Jesus and asked Jesus to give us that transfusion so that we are, as you would say, washed in the blood, then we'll have to pay the penalty for our sin.

The Bible tells us 'the wages of sin are death.' But God so loved the world that he gave his son that whoever believes in him does not have to perish but they can have everlasting life. That's you. The Bible says 'whosoever.' Are you whosoever? I can't think of anyone here or anyone watching that you're not a whosoever. He wants you to have that gift of everlasting life. You just have to say, 'Lord, I know I need to make changes.

I've got sin problems in my life. I need your love - for you and for my fellow man.' Is that your prayer, friends? Let's ask him together. Our Father in Heaven, Lord, when we study the subject of your law - your holy law, we realize these are not just ten recommendations or suggestions, but they're your commandments - that they're unchangeable. We pray that we can accept that new covenant and have your law written in our hearts. Please be with each person here.

Help them know how to apply those principles. I pray that we can experience your forgiveness that we might have that peace and that joy that you promise that comes from knowing you. We thank you and ask all this in Jesus' Name. Amen.



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