The Purpose Of The Mosaic Law
Updated: Feb 9
Day 15 of the 22 Day Salvation Study
Notes compiled by Steve McAtee and Marty Zide
What was the purpose of the Law of Moses? The Law of Moses and the Law of Christ PART ONE INTRODUCTION, GENERAL OBSERVATIONS & THE PURPOSE OF THE MOSAIC LAW INTRODUCTION *A lot of confusion revolves around the Law of Moses. This is true for unsaved Jewish people, unsaved Gentiles, Jewish believers, and Gentile believers. Most unsaved Jewish people believe that they must try to keep the Law in order to get right with God. Many Gentile believers want to express their faith in Jesus with an over-emphasis upon Jewish customs and beliefs. Many Jewish believers overemphasize the role and place of their Jewish background to the point of de-emphasizing the need of getting to know Jesus the Messiah. Paul addressed this issue in Phil. 3:4-10. Phil. 3:4-10 - although I myself might have confidence even in the flesh. If anyone else has a mind to put confidence in the flesh, I far more: circumcised the eighth day, of the nation of Israel, of the tribe of Benjamin, a Hebrew of Hebrews; as to the Law, a Pharisee; as to zeal, a persecutor of the church; as to the righteousness which is in the Law, found blameless. But whatever things were gain to me, those things I have counted as loss for the sake of Christ. More than that, I count all things to be loss in view of the surpassing value of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord, for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and count them but rubbish in order that I may gain Christ, and may be found in Him, not having a righteousness of my own derived from the Law, but that which is through faith in Christ, the righteousness which comes from God on the basis of faith, that I may know Him, and the power of His resurrection and the fellowship of His sufferings, being conformed to His death; Paul’s desire was to advance in his knowledge of Jesus his Savior, not gain a better understanding of his Jewish heritage. *There is confusion about the Law for unbelievers and certain denominations. In many cases whole denominations put themselves under the Law of Moses. They have their church meetings on Saturday, they try to keep the dietary laws without realizing that none of these Laws were ever given to them. Here’s what we will be studying: 1. What is the Law of Moses? What does it consist of? 2. What is the purpose of the Law of Moses? Why was it given? 3. What is the character of the Law of Moses? Are there different parts to it, or is it one unified Law? 4. Is the Mosaic Law operative in our present-day? If so, how much of it is, if not, does that mean we are without any Law? 5. Does the New Testament speak of a new Law that the believer is under as opposed to the Law of Moses? GENERAL OBSERVATIONS The Law of Moses was never given so people could try to keep it in order to be saved. Hypothetically, the Law could give life if it was kept perfectly, but no one could keep it, except Jesus. The Law simply doesn’t have the ability to save anybody. Gal. 2:16 - nevertheless knowing that a man is not justified by the works of the Law but through faith in Christ Jesus, even we have believed in Christ Jesus, that we may be justified by faith in Christ, and not by the works of the Law; since by the works of the Law shall no flesh be justified. Gal. 2:21 - I do not nullify the grace of God; for if righteousness comes through the Law, then Christ died needlessly. Gal. 3:10-11 - For as many as are of the works of the Law are under a curse; for it is written, Cursed is everyone who does not abide by all things written in the book of the law, to perform them. Now that no one is justified by the Law before God is evident; for, The righteous man shall live by faith. James 2:10 - For whoever keeps the whole law and yet stumbles in one point, he has become guilty of all. 2. The Law of Moses was given to the people of Israel. It was not given to the Church, nor to other Gentile nations. Rom. 9:3-4 - For I could wish that I myself were accursed, separated from Christ for the sake of my brethren, my kinsmen according to the flesh, who are Israelites, to whom belongs the adoption as sons and the glory and the covenants and the giving of the Law and the temple service and the promises, Deut. 4:7-8 - For what great nation is there that has a god so near to it as is the Lord our God whenever we call on Him? Or what great nation is there that has statutes and judgments as righteous as this whole law which I am setting before you today? Ps. 147:19-20 - He declares His words to Jacob, His statutes and His ordinances to Israel. He has not dealt thus with any nation; And as for His ordinances, they have not known them. Praise the Lord! It is important to remember this: binding the Mosaic Law upon the Church has caused a multitude of confusion and false teaching within the Body of the Messiah.
Coming Next – What Is The Nature Of The Law Of Moses 3. What is the nature of the Law of Moses? Biblically speaking, the Law was one of the Covenants that God entered into with the people of Israel. Ex. 34:27-28 - Then the Lord said to Moses, Write down these words, for in accordance with these words I have made a covenant with you and with Israel. So he was there with the Lord forty days and forty nights; he did not eat bread or drink water. And he wrote on the tablets the words of the covenant, the Ten Commandments. The Bible teaches that the Law was one of the Covenants that God entered into with the people of Israel. Some covenants are unconditional, some are conditional. The Mosaic Covenant is conditional. It is also the only covenant that is not called eternal; it was to continue only until the coming of the seed, (Gal. 3:19,16). There is a very close relationship between the Abrahamic and the Mosaic Covenants. the Mosaic Covenant was added alongside the Abrahamic Covenant in order to define the obedience that was required in order to obtain the blessings promised by the Abrahamic Covenant.
Coming Next – What Is the Law of Moses and of what does it consist?