Is the law done away? (part 1)

     We could easily be excused for thinking God’s law is done away by Romans 6:14 which says, “For sin shall not be your master, because you are not under law, but under grace.” Does that mean God’s law has no jurisdiction over us anymore, and it ceases to exist?

     Paul answers that question for us with a startling analogy. He starts it off in Romans 7 with a question: “Do you not know, brothers – that the law has authority over a man only as long as he lives?” Do you realize, he’s asking them, that you’re only under the law while you’re alive? He then gives the analogy of a wife being bound by law to her husband while her husband is alive, to show that while her husband’s still living she’s still “under the law.”

     When her husband dies, however, she is released from the law of God that binds her to her husband. In other words, she is no longer “under the law.” The laws of marriage no longer have any jurisdiction or any authority over her whatsoever. She is free to remarry without any worries about being accused of (or charged with) adultery. 

     But how does that analogy apply to a Christian? Well, as Paul points out, a Christian has died, too. It’s not a physical death like the death of a husband, but it’s still a death, because we “died with Christ (Romans 6:8).” When Christ was crucified on the cross “our old self was crucified” with him, verse 6. When he died we died with him. But that’s when something else happened as well, because in dying with him we “also died to the law through the body of Christ (Romans 7:4).”   

     When we died with Christ, the law no longer had any jurisdiction or authority over us. We were released from it as completely and totally as a wife is released from the laws of marriage when her husband dies.

     The implications of that are staggering for us Christians though, because it means we can no longer be accused of (or charged with) breaking God’s law. That’s why Paul says in Romans 6:14 that sin shall not be our master, because God has freed us up, totally, from sin ever having control of us again. We can sin a million times but never be charged with breaking the law, because sin can’t use the law to condemn us anymore. Sin has lost its power over us, as totally as the laws of marriage have lost their power over a widow.  

     But why would God do this for us? Isn’t it terribly risky?…        


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