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An Example of 'The Gonzo Journalism of Grace'
by gonzodave coulon
02/05/08
Not For Sale


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By DL Coulon


AN EXAMPLE OF "THE GONZO JOURNALISM OF GRACE"

Inconsistent people in early New Testament times were primarily Jewish “legalists,” who sought to mix the Mosaic Law with grace. Today’s inconsistent people have hi-jacked grace with a “social gospel” that has laid claim to a vision of the future Kingdom of Law in the here-and-now that may only be consistent with the presence of Christ on the earth. A complete fool would consider a rule of life under fiery, blasting Law as merely a sporting challenge. Law, when properly conceived, may only elicit a reaction of doubt in the responsible individual who is required to perform at a level of divine standards. I must say, I’m required by my conscience to say: Millions upon millions of so-called Christians check their mind at the door when they enter a church to listen and repeat that which is nothing more than generations of sporting foolishness and “friendship with the world.” Dr. Lewis Chafer comments upon this prevailing biblical error in the following:


"There is a dangerous and entirely baseless sentiment abroad which assumes that every teaching of Christ must be binding during this age simply because Christ said it. The fact is forgotten that Christ, while living under, keeping, and applying the law of Moses, also taught the principles of His future kingdom, and, at the end of His ministry and in relation to His cross, He also anticipated the teachings of grace. If this threefold division of the teachings of Christ is not recognized, there can be nothing but confusion of mind and consequent contradiction of truth." i


By way of clarification, an important analogy may be held in mind: The eye perceives color by way of nuerophysics using three primary color receptors. The pure physics of color is distinctly different. Each electromagnetic vibration of color is identified by a specific wavelength and a level of intensity. Light vibrating at a strong amplitude or intensity is white within its own predetermined wavelength. This same wavelength produces grey as the intensity of the vibration lessens. When the intensity drops to zero the light is nonexistent and the color is black. Should a person be considered biased in favor of black because he measured the contents of two sealed containers to find that one registers white and another registers zero – black: “And this is the condemnation, that light is come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil.” (John 3:19). The following explanation of the text contained at the end of each Gospel record will bear out the accuracy of sporting foolishness in my assertion. A foolishness that even an ancient group of ignorant fisherman would not accept.

In addition to being an historical record, the Bible is a book for the present as well as the future age. The four Gospels at the beginning of the NT are not disconnected, self-supporting records where each provides a complete testimony concerning the person and purpose of Jesus. The four are one and share different themes of truth. The scenarios and words spoken by Jesus at the end of each Gospel are as distinct as the beginning. However, a common thread of doubt may be found at the end of the Gospels that records the story of the “Great Commission” to preach the gospel of saving grace. This story details the who, what, why, where, when, and how of the gospel of saving grace. It is highly subjective and radical biblical truth that qualifies as the gonzo journalism of grace. To begin, only a brief study is needed to prove the order of progression in the four endings, namely: (1) Mark, (2) Matthew, (3) John, (4) Luke, and then, (5) Acts.

The place where inconsistent people find a compelling vision and blindly accept the challenge of doubt is at the end of Matthew. How may one find grace in a scene which duplicated the supranatural scenario of “The Transfiguration on the Mount” (a preview of the future Kingdom of Law), which was given to the inner circle of disciples – Peter, John, and James. How may this ending be rightly construed and preached ad infinitum as the purpose and the defining mission statement of Christianity contained in the last words of Jesus. Why is it inferred - where does it say - the disciples went away leaping with joy for the opportunity to “teach all the nations” commandments? By the standard set forth as the “Great Commission” the leading Apostle failed miserably. The Apostle Peter did not preach the gospel to “dogs,” the Gentiles, until God forced him into a trance while he was hungry and waiting for dinner. Then God was good enough to give him a nightmarish vision of food. This did not happen until well over five years after the death of Christ. Proven in Scripture by the very words of Peter, spoken to the Gentile he was about to share the gospel with, “Ye know how that it is an unlawful thing for a man that is a Jew to keep company, or come unto one of another nation; but God hath showed me that I should not call any man common or unclean” (Acts 10:28). Aside from a slavish devotion to tradition and a literary absurdity – because an absurdity is impossible and untrue - how can the words in Matthew be claimed as the parting words of Jesus, as the “The Great Commission,” or purpose and mission statement for this generation of grace? I emphatically claim this tradition is wrong-headed and is typified by an icon – the Mountain – a symbol of law (Decalogue) and the burning altar in the temple that are both the antithesis of grace. Law produces the knowledge of sin, not the control of sin. I suggest law and grace are depicted in the following actions of Jesus: Jesus, possessing the Holy Spirit, overcame temptation on a mountain; Jesus gave the future Kingdom Law Sermon on a mountain; Jesus said that faith my remove a mountain; Jesus was transfigured on a mountain (future kingdom); and, Jesus spoke from a mountain at the end of Matthew. That which is symbolized by a mountain deserves the negative thrust of the reasons, distinctions, and arguments that I have set forth in the above. The Law of itself is faultless. The way Law is misused for self-salvation by a motive of by-works - in an age of grace salvation only - is the sin against God’s grace by-faith. I suggest that Scripture will absolve me, and, all believers: “Do we then make void the law through faith? God forbid: yea, we establish the law” (Rom 3:31). Dr. Lewis Chafer comments, “The law has never been kept by those who try to keep it. It is kept, however, by those who humbly acknowledge their helplessness to do anything well pleasing to God, and who turn and find shelter in Christ who has met every demand of the law for them. Such, and only such, have ever vindicated the holy law of God. The people who attempt to keep the law have always outraged the law.” ii

The theme of the Gospel of Matthew depicts Jesus as the rightful heir of David, the Jewish King of Israel, and the promised Messiah of the Kingdom of Law that was preached and rejected; but not canceled. His death, resurrection, ascension, advocacy in heaven, and the age of grace intervenes. The resurrected and glorified Jesus will return to claim His throne. At the end of this recorded account, the eleven disciples (figure of Moses), some of whom “doubted,” met with Jesus (God) on the motif of an OT mountain (authority, the Ten Commandments) in Galilee. There they received the words of Jesus - as the so-called “populist” “Great Commission” would assert - to teach commandments to all the nations.

The Gospel of Mark (thematically – Jesus as servant), minus the religious corruption of scribal additions, authentically ends at verse 8. There the women who followed Jesus, fled from the angel who showed them that the body of Jesus was gone; who told them Christ was risen; and, gave them the message that the disciples should meet Jesus at a set location in Galilee. They trembled and were amazed at the “empty tomb,” and: “neither said they any to any man, for they were afraid.” And so, this account ends with the unseen dead servant, attended by an angelic servant who conveys a message - to overwhelmed servile women – who in turn are asked to carry a message for other servants of the servant to travel to a prearranged location at a mountain in Galilee. A chain of faith and obedience regarding a message is established in the authority of the unseen servant of God – Jesus Christ.

In the Gospel of Luke (thematically – Jesus as man), 1 the ending begins with a full gathering of the doubting disciples who, “were terrified and affrighted, and supposed that they had seen a spirit.” witnessing and partially believing the reality of the transformed, glorified, and resurrected Jesus, who shows them his hands and feet, “And while they yet believed not for joy, and wondered.” After opening their minds to the Scriptures, as He had done earlier with a few disciples on the road to Emmaus, He tells them to do two things, “Thus it is written, and thus it behoved [was commanded, binding, necessary] Christ to suffer, and to rise from the dead the third day. And that repentance [change of direction, change of destiny] and remission [completed forgiveness, expiation, the taking away of all sin] of sins should be preached in his name among all nations, beginning at Jerusalem. And ye are witnesses of these things. And, behold, I send the promise of my Father [the Holy Spirit] upon you: but tarry ye in the city of Jerusalem, until ye be endued with power from on high. … And he led them out as far as Bethany … And it came to pass, while he blessed them, he was parted from them, and carried up into heaven. And they worshipped him, and returned to Jerusalem with great joy.” Accordingly, Luke ends with the incredible transformation of a man who opened the minds of witnessing men about the truthful witness of Holy Scripture concerning Him and His death (300+ predictions). This man told them that a change of destiny is possible because he died as the OT had predicted and that his death took away sin. He told them to preach these things about himself to other men beginning in Jerusalem and to preach them in his name, Jesus Christ; but to wait until they had power from heaven through the promised gift of the Holy Spirit. Then, these men saw this man go up into heaven and believed with great joy. The man left joyful men as “witnesses” to other men that an incredible transformation and change of destiny is available in His name - Jesus Christ. Men derive all benefits from the death and resurrection of Christ.

In the Gospel of John (thematically – Jesus as God), chapter 21 is a widely accepted “original” addition or epilogue, added by the Apostle John for a latter audience. The Gospel of John properly ends with the climax of the doubting Thomas exclaiming, “My Lord and my God.” Wherein the last words of Jesus are: “Thomas, because thou hast seen me, thou hast believed: blessed are they that have not seen, and yet believe.” The Apostle John, who alone of the Gospel writers, interprets and states what is behind and below the actions and words of Jesus in his parenthetical comments, ends his Gospel with these words: “But these are written that ye believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God; and that believing ye might have [eternal] life through his name.” Therefore, the Son of God, who is unseen, may be believed on for eternal life because of the witness of John’s Gospel.

The above accounts may be placed in order of occurrence and summarized as follows: (1) In Mark, after the first scene at the empty tomb, the frightened, doubting servants delivered the angelic message with the authority of Jesus to the other servants. (2) Then in Matthew, these doubting servants met Jesus at the mountain scene of OT divine authority and received instructions about teaching and baptizing all nations. They were told by the King to teach commandments. A King who was given authority, “all power,” from His Father. Jesus told them to teach “all things whatsoever [as much as] I have commanded.” They arrived and left in doubt. (3) In John, the doubting Thomas proclaimed Jesus to be “My Lord and my God.” Here in John, future believers, who do not doubt, will learn that they are blessed with eternal life by believing in an unseen Jesus who is the Son of God. That they “might have life through his name.” (4) Finally, in Luke, the doubting disciples believe, but not to the point of joy. They are supernaturally given the details of OT prophecy as proofs for their witness to other men that a change of destiny and forgiveness of sins is available because Jesus Christ suffered and died. But, they are told to wait on the power of the Holy Spirit before they begin preaching in Jerusalem the new message they have just learned. The scene closes when the blessed disciples witness Jesus ascend into heaven and their partial belief turns to a great joy.

In addition, Luke in the companion book to his gospel, records the last settings and words of Jesus. The final scene moves to the Book of Acts (1:3-11) where additional insight to the resurrection ministry of Jesus is given between the time of “doubting Thomas” and the ascension of Christ. This last scenario gives further insight into the distinctions of the present time of the indwelling Holy Spirit for power (v.4), the first preaching of the Kingdom of Law by John the Baptist contrasted to the different baptism of the Holy Spirit for “power” in this age (v. 5), and the future fulfillment of the Kingdom of Law with the return of the King (vs. 6-7). Two men (angels) witness to the disciples at the place where Jesus ascended, confirming His return in a like manner (v. 11). So, rightfully the last red-letter words of Jesus and the “Great Commission of Grace” is the expanded preaching of the “where” from Jerusalem to Samaria and then to the “uttermost part of the earth,” “But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth” (Luke 1:8).

As before stated the Bible is not a book for one age. The gospel of grace is not contained in the ending of Mark-Matthew. Under extreme prevailing circumstances of the tribulation, the future second preaching of the gospel of the kingdom will use these verses and images. The gospel of grace for this age - in a future time - will be recognized as completely different than the Kingdom of Law. Much like, in Acts 15, years after the death of Christ, the divinely inspired council of Jerusalem recognized the gospel of saving grace was open to Jew and Gentile alike and concluded the temporary setting aside of Judaism was the will of God. It may be seen from this study of the closing messages in the four Gospels, from the witness of God’s Book of Truth, that human doubt remained with the disciples as a consequence of authority, or the influence of Law and Commandments (viz., Mark-Matthew).

Closing Comments

The lesson of the OT is that the Israelites consistently failed at Law. As a concluding summary of the story contained in the gonzo journalism of grace; in Mark-Matthew, you have an unseen Jesus, who does not reveal the why and what of His death and resurrection nor the purpose of His message to others. He speaks to His disciples through a supernatural mediator and servile women. The men arrive at a mountain and stand silent, at a distance from Jesus (déjà vu OT imagery). Aside from the confirmation of the new official names of the Holy Trinity, they are told to teach nebulous, “whatsoever” commandments to unlawful people from Gentile nations. They are not told to teach the gospel of the kingdom - that the kingdom was at hand. As John the Baptist and later, both Jesus and themselves had taught. The Jews had rejected and killed the herald of the King, John the Baptist, and the King Himself who had triumphantly entered Jerusalem on a donkey. This dejected and forlorn group of men, belonging to a now lost cause and in fear of reprisal, are not told to teach commandments because Jesus is about to restore the Davidic Kingdom. Their natural, subjective questions and reactions would have been: For whom should we teach commandments to Gentiles? For what reason, what purpose are we to go to all nations of “dogs”? Why teach any commandments by breaking commandments? The Jesus we knew did not send us to preach the kingdom to “dogs.” They arrive and leave in doubt and disbelief. The message from Christ is received as a failure. They leave without any close communion or witness from Jesus and no clear “Great Commission.”

In John-Luke-Acts, the group of disciples who had received the so-called “Great Commission,” from the resurrected Jesus on the glorious mountain, had departed and returned to Jerusalem in doubt - not great zeal and fervor, Then they are found grouped together in the Gospel of John. Here in John, on the road to Emmaus, Jesus had “opened the minds” of two disciples to the what and why of His death. When they stopped for the evening and began to eat, Jesus revealed Himself to them – His resurrected self, the who of His message. These same disciples returned to Jerusalem that very night to witness this event to the other disciples. Jesus then appeared to this group, sans Thomas, and showed them his wounds. Eight days later, one Sunday to the next, He appears again and shows Himself to Thomas. His identity as the Son of God is confirmed – the who of what and why. At this juncture, Luke picks up with the full gathering of the disciples in the close presence of watching Jesus eat; but who still do not believe to the point of joy. In Luke 24:44-52 the disciples are given the full who, what, why, where, how, and when of the gospel of saving grace. They are to begin preaching in Jerusalem, but are to wait on the power of the promised Holy Spirit. Then an expanded scenario is given in the Book of Acts (1:3-11). As the indisputable last actions and words of Jesus recorded in the Bible, this section of the NT is the proper “Great Commission” for the generation of grace. Only after, Jesus blesses the disciples and ascends into heaven do they enter into the total belief of “great joy.”

In the NT account of Luke, all the elements of the progression of spiritual salvation typified in the OT are verified; expiation and redemption, water and the Holy Spirit, joy, and power. Dr. C. I. Scofield writes: “Numbers 21:17 The spiritual order here is beautiful: (1) atonement (vs. 8, 9; John 3:14, 15); (2) water, symbol of the Spirit bestowed (v. 16; John 7:37-39); (3) joy (vs. 17, 18; Rom 14:17); (4) power (vs. 21-24)” (Old Scofield Study System, Dr. C. I. Scofield, P 195)

Historical scholarship will bear out the record that Luke wrote his Gospel in tandem with the Book of Acts to introduce the Apostle Paul and “Pauline” 2 doctrine to those influential people in Rome (familiar only with Peter) who would have a part in Paul’s upcoming capital trial. The so-called “Great Commission” in the Gospel of Matthew has no such distinction. This failed “Great Commission” has been put forward as the Alpha directive of Christianity to deceitfully obscure NT teachings of grace found in the Epistles. This dumbing-down of Christianity has been very successful in confirming a non-grace system of legal effort. A legal effort of by-works salvation that Paul unequivocally and emphatically denounced countless times in his epistolary Scripture. Legal effort has no part in God’s plan of salvation that comes from His gifts of grace made possible only by redemption in the blood of Jesus Christ. Who would demand a sporting challenge to compete with the value in the death of Christ? Another gospel allows Christ to determine entrance into the game of salvation, yes. However, the individual is then required to compete with Him to win their own salvation. Beyond absurd is beyond description.

The above is a clear distinction between misleading tradition and defining truth that identifies God’s “Great Commission of Grace.” The proper and correct starting point for understanding grace. The following is the Apostle Paul’s restatement and expanded revelation of the motive and object, the purpose, of “The Great Commission” in Luke 24:44-52:

Christ is the True Vine (new vine, Israel was the old vine). Remain one with Him and the fruits of a new nature will oppose the old sin nature and its sinful desires.

THE GREAT COMMISSION OF GRACE IS TO PREACH RECONCILIATION

2 Cor 5:14-21 For the love of Christ constraineth [unifies, controls] us; because we thus judge, that if one died for all, then were all dead: And that he died for all, that they which live should not henceforth (no longer) live unto themselves, but unto him which died for them, and rose again. Wherefore henceforth (no longer) know we no man after the flesh: yea, though we have known Christ after the flesh, yet now henceforth (no longer) know we him (so) no more. Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature (creation): old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new. And all things are of God, who hath reconciled us to himself by Jesus Christ, and hath given to us the ministry of reconciliation; To wit, that God was in Christ, reconciling the world (lost mankind) unto himself, not imputing their trespasses unto them; and hath committed unto us the word [Gk. logos=divine expression] of reconciliation. Now then we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God did beseech you by us: we pray you in Christ’s stead, be ye reconciled to God. For he hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him. KJV

AMPLIFIED BIBLE: For the love of Christ controls and urges and impels us, because we are of the opinion and conviction that [if] One died for all, then all died: And He died for all, so that all those who live might live no longer to and for themselves, but to and for Him Who died and was raised again for their sake. Consequently, from now on we estimate and regard no one from a [purely] human point of view [in terms of natural standards of value]{cf. Peter’s confession to the Gentile above (Acts 10:28)}. [No] even though we once did estimate Christ from a human viewpoint and as a man, yet now [we have such knowledge of Him that] we know Him no longer [in terms of the flesh].Therefore if any person is [engrafted] he is a new creation (a new creature altogether): the old [previous moral and spiritual condition] has passed away. Behold, the fresh and new has come! But all things are from God, Who through Jesus Christ reconciled us to Himself [received us into favor, brought us into harmony with Himself] and gave to us the ministry of reconciliation [that by word and deed we might aim to bring others into harmony with Him]. It was God [personally present] in Christ, reconciling and restoring the world {lost humanity}to favor with Himself, not counting up and holding against [men] their trespasses [but canceling them], and committing to us the message of reconciliation (of the restoration to favor). So we are Christ’s ambassadors. God making His appeal as it were through us. We [as Christ’s personal representatives] beg you for His sake to lay hold of the divine favor [now offered you] and be reconciled to God. For our sake He made Christ [virtually] to be sin Who knew no sin, so that in and through Him we might become [endued with, viewed as being in, and examples of] the righteousness of God [what we ought to be , approved and acceptable in right relationship to Him, by His goodness].


The Apostle John gave the “Great Commandment of Grace” that may be added to Paul’s “Great Commission of Grace” stated above: “And this is his [God the Father’s] commandment, That we should believe on the name of his Son Jesus Christ, and love one another as he [Christ] gave us commandment” (1 John 3:23). The populist “Great Commission” in the Gospel of Matthew may be seen for what it is: a great empty and hollow truth intended for a future time. The verses, in and of themselves, are God’s perfect truth, beyond doubt; but, to apply this truth to go forth and teach Kingdom Law commandments instead of the gospel of grace centered in the prophetical death, resurrection, and return of Jesus - as proven by determining the proper last words and instructions of Jesus in Luke 24:44-52 and Acts 1:1-9 - is a futile effort conditioned by willful inattention to Scripture.

The intent and purpose of Jesus cannot contradict itself. Only the interpretation of Scripture by men can be inconsistent. It makes little difference to biblical truth that many systems begin by denying a future kingdom. Two different messages and symbolic scenarios are demonstrated above in Mark-Matthew and Luke-John-Acts. The two different messages had two different results, one failed and one succeeded. Beyond argument, this truth is demonstrated in the uncomplicated, inductive study of biblical text. Therefore, a Protestant system that preaches an iconic “Jesus on the Mountain” from selected texts in the Synoptic Gospels as the cornerstone of a legal system - filled with a sentimental view towards grace and a dishonest, deductive homiletic – may only teach doubt as the conditional release from the penalty of sin in a parolee salvation. Anyone who uses such a system is deliberately guilty of defrauding and fleecing the public with “another gospel” (Gal 1:8) and another Jesus – a Jesus who is inconsistent with Christianity. There were no Christians produced by the Mosaic Law, only obedient children of Israel; there will be no Christians produced by a future Kingdom Law, only obedient children of the future kingdom.

The Fatherhood of God applies uniquely to a Christian. A Christian is a child of God and may only be produced by grace through faith in a one-time obedience to the gospel of saving grace when they believe Jesus Christ for perfect forgiveness and a now-but-not-yet perfect salvation. Any admixture of law with grace cannot produce the pure faith needed to rest completely on the finished work of Christ.

As previously mentioned, the precepts of Mosaic Law were restated as amplified requirements in the teachings of the Kingdom Law. Similarly, the precepts of the Mosaic Law have been superceded by heavenly high requirements contained in the restatements of the teachings of grace. Also, in a like manner, the Mosaic Law was “nailed to the cross” at the death of Jesus; so too, as it is patently a future requirement, Kingdom Law has no hold over the believer nor the unsaved in this age. The two systems of Law may only have a secondary meaning in the teachings of grace, “If truth for the children of God under grace is to be drawn from the teachings of the law of Moses, or the kingdom, it should be acknowledged that it is taken from a system foreign to grace, and that it is suitable only by way of a secondary application.” 3

The passionate disparity between grace and law, present and future, turns on the force of one, all-encompassing word – doubt – “there is no fear in love … because fear hath torment” (1 John 4:18). At the wedding in Cana, Jesus replaced the drudgery of ritual cleansing water with the joy of exceptional wine. Doubt is replaced by “great joy” when Jesus presents the new believer with “all things” contained in His heavenly blessings (Luke 24:52). I have merely sketched a “stick-man” and the balance of this effort will expand upon this theme. Within the following sections of this effort, an exhaustive set of proofs identify the source of the many false beliefs preached by “another gospel.” The guidance of Scripture and the influence of the Holy Spirit have immeasurable value in “rightly dividing” the Word of God.

Detailed Commentary: Grace and the Non-Grace of Law

In his Systematic Theology, Vol 4, Dr. Lewis Chafer comments with authority and detail regarding the above discussion:

THE TEN COMMANDMENTS AND THE TEACHINGS OF GRACE

"In this discussion, the Law of Moses will be limited to the Decalogue; for no legalists proposes to carry forward into grace the judgments which governed the social life of Israel, or the ordinances which governed their religious ritual in the land. However, the moral commandments of the Decalogue are almost universally imposed upon the church by these legalists. In justification of this imposition, the plea is usually made that apart from the direct application of the Decalogue there could be no divine authority or government in the earth. In no sense does this question involve the issues of world government; for God has never addressed either the teachings of the law or the teachings of grace to the whole world. The world has borrowed certain moral precepts from the Bible for its self-government; but it does not follow that God has accepted the world on the basis of the teachings of the law or the teachings of grace. Until this appeal is heeded, the individual is neither under law nor under grace, as a rule of life; but is “under sin.” The issue is, therefore, between law and grace as governing principles in the life of the Christian. Must Christians turn to the Decalogue for a basis of divine government in their daily lives? Scripture answers this question with a positive assertion: “Ye are not under law, but under grace.” If this be true, are the great moral values in the Decalogue discarded? By no means; for it will be seen that every moral precept of the Decalogue, but one, has been restated with increased emphasis in the teachings of grace. These precepts do not reappear under grace in the character and coloring of the law, but, rather, in the character and coloring of pure grace. The following brief comparison will demonstrate the fact that the moral values of the law are reciprocated in the teachings of grace.

1. “Thou shalt have no other gods before me.” 1. “We … preach unto you that ye should turn from these vanities unto the living God” (Acts 14:15).

2. :Thou shalt not make unto thee any graven image, … Thou shalt not bow down thyself to them, nor serve them.” 2. “Little children, keep yourselves from idols” (1 John 5:21).

3. “Thou shalt not take the name of the LORD thy God in vain.” 3. “But above all things, my brethren, swear not, neither by heaven, neither by the earth, neither by any other oath” (James 5:12).

4. “Remember the sabbath day, to keep it holy.” 4. No such command is found in the teachings of grace.

5. “Honour thy father and thy mother.” 5. “Children, obey your parents in the Lord: for this is right [the legal promise of long life is omitted]” (Eph 6:1).

6. “Thou shalt not kill.” 6. “Whosoever hateth his [believing] brother [a Christian] is a murderer: and ye know that no murderer hath eternal life abiding in him” [cf. Cain and Abel] ( 1 John 3:15).
7. “Thou shalt not commit adultery.” 7. “Neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers … shall inherit the kingdom of God [this is not a letter of the law verse – it is a principle of grace; this is not to say the “mystery” form of the kingdom of heaven does not include false professors of faith; it is to say a so-called living believer may not habitually sin without guilt and confession and inherit the rule of God over the universe; this is an assurance verse for those who genuinely desire to walk a Christian life because they are forgiven and accepted; not because they are trying to be forgiven and accepted]

8. “Thou shalt not steal” 8. “Steal no more” (Eph 4:28).

9. “Thou shalt not bear false witness.” 9. “Lie not” (Col 3:9).

10. “Thou shalt not covet.” 10. “Covetousness, let it not be once named among you [a higher obligation to the Christ given, charisma, the spiritual gifts shared between believers; and the obligation to maintain the God given unity that exists between all believers “in Christ”]” (Eph 5:3).

While some principles of the Mosaic Law are restated under grace, those aspects of the law which are foreign to grace are omitted. The command to keep the seventh day is omitted wholly. … So, also, the one promise of the Decalogue is omitted. This promise occurs in connection with the precept concerning the obedience of children. It reads: “Honour thy father and thy mother: that thy days may be long upon the land which the LORD thy God giveth thee.” The fact that the law presented a promise to obedient children is pointed out in the New Testament (Eph 6:2), with no inference that the promise is in effect now, but as a reminder of that which obtained under the law. It would be difficult for any individual, or child, in the Church to establish a claim to a God-given land, or to demonstrate that any law now obtains by which long life is guaranteed to those who are now obedient to parents. Again, concerning Israel and her relation to the land it is written: “Trust in the LORD, and do good; so shalt thou dwell in the land, and verily thou shalt be fed”; … “For the upright shall dwell in the land” (Ps 37:3; Prov 2:21). No land has been given to the Christian. He is a “stranger and a pilgrim” here, an “ambassador,” a citizen of heaven. If he is taught in the Scriptures, he is not looking for a long life here; but he is looking for the coming of the Lord. He is not clinging to this life; for “to depart, and to be with Christ … is far better.” The serious manner in which people apply an Old Testament promise, impossible under grace, to themselves is a revelation of the measure of inattention with which the Scriptures are too often read and quoted. Since every adaptable precept of the law is restated in grace, it is not necessary to violate the Scriptures by forcing the law into the sphere of grace. The Decalogue, in its moral principles, is not only restated in grace, but its principles are greatly amplified. This is illustrated, again, by the same precept concerning obedient children. In the teachings of grace, the whole issue of obedience is taken up at length, and to this is added the instructions to parents as well. Under the teachings of grace, the appeal of the first commandment is repeated no less than fifty times, the second twelve times, the third four times, the fourth (about the sabbath day) not at all, the fifth six times, the sixth six times, the seventh twelve times, the eighth six times, the ninth four times, and the tenth nine times. Yet, further, that which is even more vital should be noted: The teachings of grace are not only gracious in character and of the very nature of heaven itself, but they are extended to cover the entire range of the new issues of the life and service of the Christian. The Ten Commandments require no life of prayer, no Christian service, no evangelism, no missionary effort, no gospel preaching, no life and walk in the Spirit, no Fatherhood of God, no union with Christ, no fellowship of saints, no hope of salvation, and no hope of heaven. If it is asserted that we have all these because we have both the law and grace, it is replied that the law adds nothing to grace but confusion and contradiction, and that there is the most faithful warning in the Scriptures against this admixture. A few times the teachings of the law are referred to by the writers of the Epistles by way of illustration. Having stated the obligation under grace, they cite the fact that this same principle obtained under law. There is, however, no basis here for a commingling of these two governing systems. The law of Moses presents a covenant of works to be wrought in the energy of the flesh; the teachings the teachings of grace present a covenant of faith to be wrought in the energy of the Spirit." –P 208-11

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1 Sidenote: The Gospel and the Book of Acts were written as a legal brief to be used in the Apostle Paul’s defense in Rome, where only Peter was well known.
2 “Paul was the divinely chosen agent to develop the Christian system for New Testament readers since previously it had appeared only in part with the teachings of Christ. To the Apostle was given the two distinct revelations: (1) that of the way of salvation and of life under grace … (cf. Gal 1:11-12) and (2) that of the doctrine of the Church, which is Christ’s Body (Eph 3:1-6). These two bodies of truth include the great New Testament message which is Christianity, something Paul termed “my gospel” (Rom 2:16). For a time he stood alone in the defense of the new system of Christianity (Gal 2:11-14). (Systematic Theology, Dr. Lewis Chafer, Vol 7, p 249)
3 Lewis Sperry Chafer, Systematic Theology, Vol 4, p 204
i Systematic Theology, Dr. Lewis Chafer, Vol 4, P 224
ii Ibid., Vol 4, pp 239-40
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