IS THE LAW
DONE AWAY?

 

Controversy rages concerning what the Scriptures say. The over-all majority of Christianity proclaims that the law is done away, upholding the writings of Paul as the foundation of their proof. There are some smaller Christian groups, Orthodox Judaism and Yahwists who proclaim the exact opposite, using both Old and New Testament Scriptures as their authority. Many in the latter groups reach the point of extreme Pharisaism, fulfilling the law to the letter. Many in the former group have an "anything goes" attitude. Why all the confusion? What do the Scriptures really say?

The Apostle Paul is the most mis-understood of all the apostles. Through his writings, Christianity has developed its teaching that the law (Torah) is done away. He is exalted to a very high place by them for that very reason.

On the other hand he is hated, despised and rejected by Orthodox Judaism, and many others who have a tendency to be rather Pharisaical in their outlook and approach.

Yet, neither group has truly understood Paulís writings. The Apostle Peter wrote, "But the day of YAHWEH will come as a thief in the night; in the which the Heavens shall pass away with a great noise, and the elements shall melt with fervent heat, the earth also and the works that are therein shall be burned up. Seeing then that all these things shall be dissolved, what manner of persons ought ye to be in all holy conversation and righteousness, Looking for and hasting unto the coming of the day of YAHWEH, wherein the Heavens being on fire shall be dissolved, and the elements shall melt with fervent heat? Nevertheless we, according to HIS promise, look for new Heavens and a new earth, wherein dwelleth righteousness. Wherefore, beloved, seeing that ye look for such things, be diligent that ye may be found of HIM in peace, without spot, and blameless. And account that the longsuffering of our Sovereign is salvation; even as our beloved brother Paul also according to the wisdom given unto him hath written unto you; As also in all his epistles, speaking in them of these things; in which are some things hard to be understood, which they that are unlearned and unstable wrest, as they do also the other Scriptures, unto their own destruction," 2 Pt. 3:10-16.

There are those, even in the Yahwist movement today, who are suspicious of Paul and his writings, but as revealed here, there was no dis-harmony nor suspicion between Peter and the other apostles as to his writings. Peter gives them credence!

Notice that Peter says Paulís writings are "...hard to be understood, which they that are unlearned and unstable wrest, as they also wrest the other Scriptures unto their own destruction."

LAW DONE AWAY?

Paul wrote, "Knowing that a man is not justified by the works of the law, but by the faith of YAHshua Messiah, even we have believed in YAHshua Messiah, that we might be justified by the faith of Messiah, and not by the works of the law: for by the works of the law shall no flesh be justified...For I through the law am dead to the law, that I might live unto YAHWEH...I do not frustrate the grace of YAHWEH: for if righteousness come by the law, then Messiah is dead in vain," Gal. 2:16, 19, 21.

Paulís writings here and elsewhere certainly appear to overthrow the law of YAHWEH. In fact, so much so, that Christianity teaches that the law is done away in Messiah.

Look at what else Paul wrote, "O foolish Galatians, who hath bewitched you, that ye should not obey the truth, before whose eyes YAHshua Messiah hath been evidently set forth, impaled among you? This only would I learn of you, Received ye the Spirit by the works of the law, or by the hearing of faith?...For as many as are of the works of the law are under the curse: for it is written, Cursed is every one that continueth not in all things which are written in the book of the law to do them. But that no man is justified by the law in the sight of YAHWEH, it is evident: for, The just shall live by faith. And the law is not of faith: but, the man that doeth them shall live in them. Messiah hath redeemed us from the curse of the law, being made a curse for us: for it is written, Cursed is every one that hangeth on a tree:...For if the inheritance be of the law, it is no more of promise: but YAHWEH gave it to Abraham by promise. Wherefore then serveth the law? It was added because of transgressions, till the seed should come to whom the promise was made; and it was ordained by angels in the hand of a mediator. Now a mediator is not a mediator of one, but YAHWEH is one. Is the law then against the promises of YAHWEH? Let it not be: for if there had been a law given which could have given life, verily righteousness should have been by the law.... Tell me, ye that desire to be under the law, do ye not hear the law? For it is written, that Abraham had two sons, the one by a bondmaid, the other by a freewoman. But he who was of the bondwoman was born after the flesh; but he of the freewoman was by promise. Which things are an allegory: for these are the two covenants; the one from the mount Sinai, which gendereth to bondage, which is Agar. For this Agar is mount Sinai in Arabia, and answereth to Jerusalem which now is, and is in bondage with her children. But Jerusalem which is above is free, which is the mother of us all. For it is written, Rejoice, thou barren that bearest not; break forth and cry, thou that travailest not: for the desolate hath many more children than she which hath an husband. Now we, brethren, as Isaac was, are the children of promise. But as then he that was born after the flesh persecuted him that was born after the Spirit, even so it is now. Nevertheless what saith the Scripture? Cast out the bondwoman and her son: for the son of the bondwoman shall not be heir with the son of the freewoman. So then, brethren, we are not children of the bondwoman, but of the free....Stand fast therefore in the liberty wherewith Messiah hath made us free, and be not entangled again with the yoke of bondage. Behold, I Paul say unto you, that if ye be circumcised, Messiah shall profit you nothing. For I testify again to every man that is circumcised, that he is a debtor to do the whole law. Messiah is become of no effect unto you, whosoever of you are justified by the law; ye are fallen from grace," Gal. 3:1-2, 10-13, 18-21; 4:21-31; 5:1-4.

"Now we know that what things soever the law saith, it saith to them who are under the law: that every mouth may be stopped, and all the world may become guilty before YAHWEH. Therefore by the deeds of the law there shall no flesh be justified in His sight: for by the law is the knowledge of sin. But now the righteousness of YAHWEH without the law is manifested, being witnessed by the law and the prophets; Even the righteousness of YAHWEH which is by faith of YAHshua Messiah unto all and upon all them that believe: for there is no difference: For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of YAHWEH; being justified freely by HIS grace through the redemption that is in Messiah YAHshua: Whom YAHWEH hath set forth to be a propitiation through faith in His blood, to declare His righteousness for the remission of sins that are past, through the forbearance of YAHWEH; to declare, I say, at this time His righteousness: that He might be just, and the justifier of him which believeth in YAHshua. Where is boasting then? It is excluded. By what law? of works? Nay: but by the law of faith. Therefore we conclude that a man is justified by faith without the deeds of the law," Ro. 3:19-28.

When one reads these and other Scriptures written by the Apostle Paul, he certainly does get the general and overall idea that the law is no longer functional, that the law is done away, doesnít he?

LAW NOT DONE AWAY?

The next question to ask is, "Is Paul actually in contradiction with YAHshua?" YAHshua, Himself, said, "Think not that I am come to destroy the law, or the prophets: I am not come to destroy, but to fulfil," Mt. 5:17.

The word fulfil is translated from the Greek word plhrow (pleroo). Strongís Exhaustive Concordance gives its definition as: to make replete, i.e. (lit.) to cram (a net), level up (a hollow), or (fig.) to furnish (or imbue, diffuse, influence), satisfy, execute (an office), finish (a period or task), verify (or coincide with a prediction), etc. It has generally been translated in the English as: accomplish, (be) complete, end, expire, fill (up), fulfil, (be, make) full (come), fully preach, perfect, supply.

But now, letís go to Websterís New World Dictionary and see what definition he gives concerning the word "fulfil": 1. to carry out (something promised, desired, expected, predicted, etc.); cause to be or happen 2. to do (something required); obey 3. to fill the requirements of; satisfy (a condition) or answer (a purpose) 4. to bring to an end; complete óSYN. see PERFORM ófulfil oneself to realize completely oneís ambition, potentialities, etc.

Notice that both definitions (Strongís and Websterís) have given the meanings: to end, bring to an end, expire, etc., which would mean, in essence, to overthrow, do away with, or destroy, but YAHshua plainly said that such WAS NOT His purpose! His purpose was to obey, satisfy the requirements of, perform, or verify the law.

The Apostle John gives the Scriptural definition for sin, "Whosoever committeth sin transgresseth also the law: for sin is the transgression of the law," 1 Jn. 3:4.

Peter openly admits that YAHshua fulfilled the requirements of the law setting an example that we should follow Him, "For even hereunto were ye called: because Messiah also suffered for us, leaving us an example, that ye should follow His steps: Who did no sin, neither was guile found in His mouth: Who, when He was reviled, reviled not again; when He suffered, He threatened not; but committed Himself to HIM that judgeth righteously," 1 Pt. 2:21-23.

The chief priests, elders, scribes, Pharisees and Sadducees could find no fault in YAHshua. Therefore, they sought false witnesses to bring an evil report against Him and still could find no two false witnesses that could agree in their accusations, "Now the chief priests, and elders, and all the council, sought false witness against YAHshua, to put Him to death; But found none: yea, though many false witnesses came, yet found they none. At the last came two false witnesses, And said, This fellow said, I am able to destroy the temple of Elohim, and to build it in three days," Mt. 26:59-61.

Neither Pilate nor Herod could find any fault in Him, "Then said Pilate to the chief priests and to the people, ĎI find no fault in this Man.í When Pilate heard of Galilee, he asked whether the man were a Galilean. And as soon as he knew that He belonged unto Herod's jurisdiction, he sent Him to Herod, who himself also was at Jerusalem at that time. And when Herod saw YAHshua, he was exceeding glad: for he was desirous to see Him of a long season, because he had heard many things of Him; and he hoped to have seen some miracle done by Him. Then he questioned with Him in many words; but He answered him nothing. And the chief priests and scribes stood and vehemently accused Him. And Herod with his men of war set Him at nought, and mocked Him, and arrayed Him in a gorgeous robe, and sent Him again to Pilate. And the same day Pilate and Herod were made friends together: for before they were at enmity between themselves. And Pilate, when he had called together the chief priests and the rulers and the people, Said unto them, ĎYe have brought this man unto me, as one that perverteth the people: and, behold, I, having examined Him before you, have found no fault in this man touching those things whereof ye accuse Him: No, nor yet Herod: for I sent you to him; and, lo, nothing worthy of death is done unto Him,í" Lk. 23:4-15.

Even Judas Iscariot, the one who betrayed YAHshua into the hands of the Jewish leaders, declared His innocence, "Then Judas, which had betrayed Him, when he saw that he was condemned, repented himself, and brought again the thirty pieces of silver to the chief priests and elders, Saying, I have sinned in that I have betrayed the innocent blood. And they said, What is that to us? See thou to that. And he cast down the pieces of silver in the temple, and departed, and went and hanged himself," Mt. 27:3-5.

The Scriptures are replete with YAHshua's innocence. He was without fault, without sin, without blemish. He perfectly fulfilled the requirements of YAHWEH'S law, setting the example for us.

SELF CONTRADICTION?

The next question to ask is, "Does Paul contradict himself?" He certainly seems to do so when he writes, "For as many as have sinned without law shall also perish without law: and as many as have sinned in the law shall be judged by the law; for not the hearers of the law are just before YAHWEH, but the doers of the law shall be justified," Ro. 2:12-13.

"Do we then make void the law through faith? Let it not be: yea, we establish the law." Ro. 3:31. Establish comes from the Greek word histemi which also means: to stand, abide, appoint, bring, continue, covenant, hold up, present, stand by, etc.

"Likewise reckon ye also yourselves to be dead indeed unto sin (Note: sin is the transgression of the law), but alive unto YAHWEH through YAHshua Messiah our Sovereign. Let not sin (transgression of the law [Torah]) therefore reign in your mortal body, that ye should obey it in the lusts thereof. Neither yield ye your members as instruments of unrighteousness unto sin (transgression of the law [Torah]): but yield yourselves unto YAHWEH, as those that are alive from the dead, and your members as instruments of righteousness unto YAHWEH. For sin shall not have dominion over you: for ye are not under the law, but under grace. What then? shall we sin, because we are not under the law, but under grace? Let it not be. Know ye not, that to whom ye yield yourselves servants to obey, his servants ye are to whom ye obey; whether of sin unto death, or of obedience unto righteousness? But YAHWEH be thanked, that ye were the servants of sin, but ye have obeyed from the heart that form of doctrine which was delivered you. Being then made free from sin, ye became the servants of righteousness. I speak after the manner of men because of the infirmity of your flesh: for as ye have yielded your members servants to uncleanness and to iniquity unto iniquity; even so now yield your members servants to righteousness unto holiness. For when ye were the servants of sin, ye were free from righteousness. What fruit had ye then in those things whereof ye are now ashamed? For the end of those things is death. But now being made free from sin, and become servants to YAHWEH, ye have your fruit unto holiness, and the end everlasting life," Ro. 6:11-22.

Here is what Paul admonishes, "Owe no man any thing, but to love one another: for he that loveth another hath fulfilled the law. For this, Thou shalt not commit adultery, Thou shalt not kill, Thou shalt not steal, Thou shalt not bear false witness, Thou shalt not covet; and if there be any other commandment, it is briefly comprehended in this saying, namely, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. Love worketh no ill to his neighbour: therefore love is the fulfilling of the law," Ro. 13:8-10.

What Paul has enumerated here is the last five of the ten commandments that Moses received on Mount Sinai. Havenít we just read that Mount Sinai engenders bondage? Moses received the commandments on two tablets of stone. Each tablet would have contained five of the ten commandments, just like the two hands that we all have with five fingers on each hand. The second tablet, containing the five commandments just enumerated by Paul are summed up as "Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself."

When asked about the first commandment of all, YAHshua said, "And one of the scribes came, and having heard them reasoning together, and perceiving that He had answered them well, asked Him, Which is the first commandment of all? And YAHshua answered him, The first of all the commandments is, Hear, O Israel; YAHWEH our Elohim is one YAHWEH: And thou shalt love YAHWEH thy Elohim with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind, and with all thy strength: this is the first commandment. And the second is like, namely this, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. There is none other commandment greater than these," Mk. 12:28-31.

Therefore, the first tablet of stone with its five commandments are summed up as "Love toward YAHWEH."

This leads us to a very interesting concept for the major Hebrew word for love is "ahavah" which in Hebrew looks like this: . Each one of these Hebrew characters also stands for a number. = 1, = 2, and = 5. Now letís do a little simple arithmetic which will allow us to see a marvelous thing, certainly and most positively the Apostle Paul had knowledge of.

The first tablet which Moses received contained the first five of the Ten Commandments which are summed up as LOVE () toward YAHWEH. The second tablet contained the last five of the Ten Commandments which are summed up as LOVE () toward neighbor.

The Apostle John tells us, "Beloved, let us LOVE one another: for LOVE is of YAHWEH; and every one that loveth is born of YAHWEH, and knoweth YAHWEH. He that loveth not knoweth not YAHWEH; for YAHWEH is LOVE," 1 Jn. 4:7-8.

YAHWEH'S name is the sum total of the commandments. It is He Who has complete and total power over this law of LOVE. He is the One Who is able to faithfully fulfil it. Paul, being a Jew and having been taught at the feet of Gamaliel would certainly have known of this concept.

There must be another answer as to why Paul could seemingly, on the one hand, appear to be anti-Torah and, on the other hand, be pro-Torah. What is the answer?

THE LAW OF SIN

The major key to understanding the writings of the Apostle Paul is found in the book of Romans, chapter 7. Paul reveals that he is being subjected to an inner struggle, "For that which I do I allow not: for what I would, that do I not; but what I hate, that do I. If then I do that which I would not, I consent unto the law that it is good. Now then it is no more I that do it, but sin that dwelleth in me. For I know that in me, in my flesh, dwelleth no good thing: for to will is present with me; but how to perform that which is good I find not. For the good that I would I do not: but the evil which I would not, that I do. Now if I do that I would not, it is no more I that do it, but sin that dwelleth in me," v.v. 15-20.

Paul begins to reveal that when he determines to do good, to do that which is prescribed in the law (Torah), evil is present with him. He begins to get frustrated because of his helplessness to perform the good rather than the evil. Why?

"I find then a law, that, when I would do good, evil is present with me. For I delight in the law (Torah) of Elohim after the inward man: But I see another law in my members, warring against the law of my mind, and bringing me into captivity to the law of sin which is in my members," v.v. 21-23.

Paul was the Sir Isaac Newton of his day! Paul discovered and revealed that there is a law of sin in the flesh. This law of sin in the flesh is powerful and sure. It is just as powerful and sure as the law of gravity and other laws of physics, chemistry, biology, etc. that this physical creation is (thankfully) subject to.

Paul reveals elsewhere, "This I say then, Walk in the Spirit, and ye shall not fulfil the lust of the flesh. For the flesh lusteth against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh: and these are contrary the one to the other: so that ye cannot do the things that ye would. But if ye be led of the Spirit, ye are not under the law," Gal 5:16-18.

This is the key to understanding the writings of Paul, as well as the spirit and intent of the New Covenant based upon better promises. There is a law of sin in the flesh. No manner of SELF IMPOSED law (Torah) keeping can deliver us from its consequences. Look at what else Paul wrote, "What then? are we better than they? No, in no wise: for we have before proved both Jews and Gentiles, that they are all under sin; As it is written, There is none righteous, no, not one: There is none that understandeth, there is none that seeketh after YAHWEH. They are all gone out of the way, they are together become unprofitable; there is none that doeth good, no, not one. Their throat is an open sepulchre; with their tongues they have used deceit; the poison of asps is under their lips: Whose mouth is full of cursing and bitterness: Their feet are swift to shed blood: Destruction and misery are in their ways: And the way of peace have they not known: There is no fear of Elohim before their eyes...For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of Elohim," Rom. 3:9-18, 23.

All have sinned. All have been subject to the consequences of the law of sin in the flesh. No man can escape its destructive power unless he has been called and chosen by YAHWEH to come under His grace through the atoning sacrifice of the Messiah, "O wretched man that I am! Who shall deliver me from the body of this death? I thank YAHWEH through YAHshua Messiah our Sovereign," Ro. 7:24-25.

Our deliverance is through YAHshua. No manner of law keeping (Torah observance) can earn it. Look at what else Paul says, "So then with the mind I myself serve the law (Torah) of YAHWEH; but with the flesh the law of sin." (Last part of Ro. 7:25.)

Paul says that he continues to serve the law of sin with the flesh, an amazing statement!This should be a statement that would humble each and every man, but too many begin to impose the Torah on the flesh and, consequently, become high-minded and self righteous. It is too easy in that state of mind to trust in oneís own abilities, oneís own self.

THE LAW OF SINíS ORIGIN

Where did this law of sin come from? How was it introduced into the flesh? Paulís writings are not incomplete. He also reveals how and where this law of sin comes from.

"Wherefore, as by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned: for until the law sin was in the world: but sin is not imputed when there is no law. Nevertheless death reigned from Adam to Moses, even over them that had not sinned after the similitude of Adam's transgression, who is the figure of Him that was to come," Ro. 5:12-14.

When Adam took of the forbidden fruit, the fruit of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, the law of sin and death entered into the flesh. The law of sin and death passed on all men through inheritance from Adam.

Letís simply take some excerpts from the rest of chapter five to prove the point, "...For if through the offence of one many be dead (v. 15)...for the judgment was by one to condemnation (v. 16)...For if by one manís offence death reigned by one (v. 17)...Therefore as by the offence of one judgment came upon all men to condemnation (v. 18)...For as by one manís disobedience many were made sinners," (v. 19). We can add to these excerpts from 1 Cor. 15, "For since by man came death (v. 21)...For as in Adam all die," (v. 22).

The inheritance through the first man, Adam, was misery, corruption, sin and death. No man has been able to escape this sentence, this law, this inheritance, except the Man, YAHshua, Who was not conceived by a son of Adam, but was conceived by the FATHER YAHWEH, through the Holy Spirit in the womb of the virgin Miriam. YAHshua was the One Man Who did not have the inheritance of corruption, sin and death in His members, but rather the Heavenly inheritance of the law of life. Therefore, through the power of YAHWEH living in Him, He was able to perfectly fulfil the Torah; no sin, no fault having been found in Him by the Jews, the Romans, His disciples, the accusers, nor the FATHER YAHWEH.

THE FIGURE OR TYPE

Paul writes that Adam was a figure of Him That was to come (Ro. 5:14). The word figure comes from the Greek word tupos from which we derive our English word type. In other words, we could say that Adam was an anti-type of YAHshua for each man has an inheritance, but that inheritance is actually in opposition to one another.

Letís look at the excerpts in Ro. 5 concerning the inheritance that comes through YAHshua, "But not as the offence, so also is the free gift....much more the grace of YAHWEH, and the gift by grace, which is by one man, YAHshua Messiah, hath abounded unto many. (v. 15)...but the free gift is of many offences unto justification. (v. 16)... much more they which receive abundance of grace and of the gift of righteousness shall reign in life by One, YAHshua Messiah. (v. 17)...even so by the righteousness of One the free gift came upon all men unto justification of life. (v. 18)...so by the obedience of One shall many be made righteous," (v. 19). In 1 Cor. 15 we also read, "...by man came also the resurrection of the dead. (v. 21)...even so in Messiah shall all be made alive," (v. 22).

We find, therefore, that our fore-father Adam has caused us to inherit the law of corruption, sin and death; which brings condemnation to judgment. But through faith in YAHshua we can be resurrected to the inheritance of the law of the Spirit of life.

Another important key to understanding the types is the principle of; that which is first is natural, physical, fleshly while that which is second is spiritual and Heavenly. Paul reveals this concept in 1 Cor. 15, "But some man will say, How are the dead raised up? And with what body do they come? Thou fool, that which thou sowest is not quickened, except it die: And that which thou sowest, thou sowest not that body that shall be, but bare grain, it may chance of wheat, or of some other grain: But YAHWEH giveth it a body as it hath pleased HIM, and to every seed his own body. All flesh is not the same flesh: but there is one kind of flesh of men, another flesh of beasts, another of fishes, and another of birds. There are also celestial bodies, and bodies terrestrial: but the glory of the celestial is one, and the glory of the terrestrial is another. There is one glory of the sun, and another glory of the moon, and another glory of the stars: for one star differeth from another star in glory. So also is the resurrection of the dead. It is sown in corruption; it is raised in incorruption: It is sown in dishonour; it is raised in glory: it is sown in weakness; it is raised in power: It is sown a natural body; it is raised a spiritual body. There is a natural body, and there is a spiritual body. And so it is written, The first man Adam was made a living soul; the last Adam was made a quickening spirit. Howbeit that was not first which is spiritual, but that which is natural; and afterward that which is spiritual. The first man is of the earth, earthy: the second man is the Sovereign from Heaven. As is the earthy, such are they also that are earthy: and as is the Heavenly, such are they also that are Heavenly. And as we have borne the image of the earthy, we shall also bear the image of the Heavenly," v.v. 35-49.

Such is a concept to always keep in mind when reading and studying the Scriptures. There is a pattern by which YAHWEH works. The first of all things is physical, natural, corruptible, earthy. Adam was made of the dust of the ground. He was made of the earth, earthy. But we must understand that initially, Adam did not have the law of corruption, sin and death in his members. He was made and pronounced with the rest of the creation as "good" (Gen. 1:31).

Adam was given dominion over the creation and was placed in the garden of Eden. Adam was the master, the sovereign of the earth. His act of disobedience not only subjected his posterity to the law of corruption, sin and death, but it also brought the creation into the bondage of corruption. YAHWEH terribly cursed the earth after Adamís act of disobedience, "And unto Adam He said, Because thou hast hearkened unto the voice of thy wife, and hast eaten of the tree, of which I commanded thee, saying, Thou shalt not eat of it: cursed is the ground for thy sake; in sorrow shalt thou eat of it all the days of thy life; Thorns also and thistles shall it bring forth to thee; and thou shalt eat the herb of the field; In the sweat of thy face shalt thou eat bread, till thou return unto the ground; for out of it wast thou taken: for dust thou art, and unto dust shalt thou return," Gen. 3:17-19.

Because of this introduction of the law of corruption, sin and death into the flesh, also bringing the creation into bondage, Paul reveals that flesh and blood cannot inherit the Kingdom of Elohim (1 Cor. 15:50).

But now, the deliverance through the second Adam, of Whom the first Adam is a type (anti-type), must become obvious.

THE INHERITANCE

Paul writes, "Behold, I shew you a mystery; We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed, In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump: for the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed. For this corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal must put on immortality. So when this corruptible shall have put on incorruption, and this mortal shall have put on immortality, then shall be brought to pass the saying that is written, Death is swallowed up in victory. O death, where is thy sting? O grave, where is thy victory? The sting of death is sin; and the strength of sin is the law. But thanks be to YAHWEH, which giveth us the victory through our Sovereign YAHshua Messiah. Therefore, my beloved brethren, be ye stedfast, unmoveable, always abounding in the work of Sovereign, forasmuch as ye know that your labour is not in vain in the Sovereign," 1 Cor. 15: 51-58.

We must receive another body that is being prepared for us in Heaven if we are to inherit YAHWEH'S kingdom, incorruption and immortality. It is IMPOSSIBLE to inherit it in the flesh! When this resurrection occurs, then the creation will also be delivered from its bondage, "For the earnest expectation of the creature waiteth for the manifestation of the sons of Elohim. For the creature was made subject to vanity, not willingly, but by reason of HIM who hath subjected the same in hope, Because the creature itself also shall be delivered from the bondage of corruption into the glorious liberty of the children of Elohim. For we know that the whole creation groaneth and travaileth in pain together until now. And not only they, but ourselves also, which have the firstfruits of the Spirit, even we ourselves groan within ourselves, waiting for the adoption, to wit, the redemption of our body," Ro. 8:19-23.

ISRAELíS BLINDNESS

When YAHshua appeared in the flesh to fulfil the requirements of the law (Torah), there was a sect of people who were basically in control of the land under the hand of the Romans. These people were the Pharisees. There were other sects of belief also such as the Sadducees, Herodians, Zealots, Essenes, etc. But the Pharisees were, by far, the most popular and numerous of them all. It was the Pharisees, specifically their leaders, who caused YAHshua so many problems. Yet, YAHshua said, "For I say unto you, That except your righteousness shall exceed the righteousness of the scribes and Pharisees, ye shall in no case enter into the kingdom of Heaven," Mt. 5:20.

The scribes and Pharisees were so zealous for the Torah (law) that they had imposed so many doís and doníts that the Torah (law) of YAHWEH had become a tremendous burden, "Then spake YAHshua to the multitude, and to His disciples, Saying, The scribes and the Pharisees sit in Moses' seat: All therefore whatsoever they bid you observe, that observe and do; but do not ye after their works: for they say, and do not. For they bind heavy burdens and grievous to be borne, and lay them on men's shoulders; but they themselves will not move them with one of their fingers," Mt. 23:1-4.

Many people use these verses to impute that YAHshua empowered the scribes and Pharisees over His own followers, but such is not the case. There is no space to explain the concept conveyed here in this treatise, but it will be addressed at another time. The main point is that the Pharisees were binding heavy and grievous burdens on other menís shoulders while they considered themselves to be excluded from those same burdens.

YAHshua made this point with them, "Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For ye make clean the outside of the cup and of the platter, but within they are full of extortion and excess. Thou blind Pharisee, cleanse first that which is within the cup and platter, that the outside of them may be clean also. Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For ye are like unto whited sepulchres, which indeed appear beautiful outward, but are within full of dead men's bones, and of all uncleanness. Even so ye also outwardly appear righteous unto men, but within ye are full of hypocrisy and iniquity," Mt. 23:25-28.

Applying what we have already learned, we can see that the Pharisees were taken up with making the exterior, the flesh to appear as if it were able to be righteous. But the exterior, the flesh is under the dominion of the law of sin. Paul revealed that it was the inward man which delighted in the law of righteousness.

Notice that YAHshua stated that the Pharisees were blind in verses 16, 24 and 26 of Mat. 23. Paul was inspired to record that Israel was blinded, "What then? Israel hath not obtained that which he seeketh for; but the election hath obtained it, and the rest were blinded....For I would not, brethren that ye should be ignorant of this mystery, lest ye should be wise in your own conceits; that blindness in part is happened to Israel, until the fulness of the Gentiles be come in," Ro. 11:7, 25.

Paul further reveals, "What shall we say then? That the Gentiles, which followed not after righteousness, have attained to righteousness, even the righteousness which is of faith. But Israel, which followed after the law of righteousness, hath not attained to the law of righteousness. Wherefore? Because they sought it not by faith, but as it were by the works of the law. For they stumbled at that stumblingstone," Ro. 9:30-32. "Brethren, my heart's desire and prayer to YAHWEH for Israel is, that they might be saved. For I bear them record that they have a zeal of Elohim, but not according to knowledge. For they being ignorant of Elohim's righteousness, and going about to establish their own righteousness, have not submitted themselves unto the righteousness of Elohim," Ro. 10:1-3.

Doesnít it become more and more obvious? YAHWEH gave the first covenant (contained in the Torah) to Israel. The Gentiles were excluded from that first covenant. But Israel was blinded concerning its true purpose and meaning. Instead of allowing the Torah to reveal the law of sin in the flesh, thereby "teaching" (Torah also means teaching) them that they were helpless in its fulfillment and needed deliverance from their weakness in the flesh; they went about seeking to establish their own righteousness by observing the Torah under the power of sinful flesh. All they accomplished was SELF-RIGHTEOUSNESS! That self-righteousness was so devious and deceitful that, when the true righteousness of YAHWEH was revealed in YAHshua, they were blinded to it and condemned Him to be worthy of death Who had done no sin, neither was there any blemish in Him nor guile in His mouth!

Too many people who turn to the Torah, today, fall under the same spell that the scribes, Pharisees and the overall majority of Israel did. They go about to establish their own righteousness. They become blinded to the reality of YAHWEH'S righteousness apart from, or without the law (Torah).

THE NEW COVENANT

The Prophet Jeremiah was inspired to write, "Behold, the days come, saith YAHWEH, that I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel, and with the house of Judah: Not according to the covenant that I made with their fathers in the day that I took them by the hand to bring them out of the land of Egypt; which MY covenant they brake, although I was an husband unto them, saith YAHWEH: But this shall be the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel; After those days, saith YAHWEH, I will put my law in their inward parts, and write it in their hearts; and will be their Elohim, and they shall be MY people. And they shall teach no more every man his neighbour, and every man his brother, saying, Know YAHWEH: for they shall all know ME, from the least of them unto the greatest of them, saith YAHWEH: for I will forgive their iniquity, and I will remember their sin no more," 31:31-34.

The book of Hebrews repeats this text from the prophet Jeremiah in chapter 8:8-12. Hebrews also says, "For if that first covenant had been faultless, then should no place have been sought for the second. For finding fault with them...," 8:7-8 (first part).

The fault was not with YAHWEH, the covenant or Torah, but with them (Israel). Why? Because their heart still had the foreskin of the flesh attached. The FIRST covenant was made with a people (man or men) of the flesh (remember 1 Cor. 15). The flesh could not fulfil the Torah. The SECOND covenant is made through the last (second) Adam, the Sovereign from Heaven. It is the covenant that has the power of the Spirit behind it, not the weakness of the flesh.

Paul reveals that Israel was purposely blinded and cast away for the reconciling of the world, "I say then, Have they stumbled that they should fall? Let it not be: but rather through their fall salvation is come unto the Gentiles, for to provoke them to jealousy. Now if the fall of them be the riches of the world, and the diminishing of them the riches of the Gentiles; how much more their fulness? For I speak to you Gentiles, inasmuch as I am the apostle of the Gentiles, I magnify mine office: If by any means I may provoke to emulation them which are my flesh, and might save some of them. For if the casting away of them be the reconciling of the world, what shall the receiving of them be, but life from the dead?" Ro. 11:11-15. Israel became a sacrifice for the reconciliation of the rest of the world.

Paul is inspired to promise, "And so all Israel shall be saved: as it is written, There shall come out of Sion the Deliverer, and shall turn away unrighteousness from Jacob: For this is MY covenant unto them, when I shall take away their sins. As concerning the evangel, they are enemies for your sakes: but as touching the Election, they are beloved for the fathers' sakes. For the gifts and calling of YAHWEH are without repentance. For as ye in times past have not believed YAHWEH, yet have now obtained mercy through their unbelief: Even so have these also now not believed, that through your mercy they also may obtain mercy. For YAHWEH hath concluded them all in unbelief, that HE might have mercy upon all," Ro. 11:26-32.

Paulís writings correspond to and are in agreement with the writings of Ezekiel. Ezekiel also writes of the graves of all Israel of both of the houses of Israel, Judah and Ephraim, being opened and the people being resurrected from the dead. YAHWEH promises to put His Spirit in them at that time (Ez. 37:14). They will no longer be defiled by the paganistic Gentile religions and they will be cleansed from all of their sins (v. 23). YAHWEH'S covenant of peace will be made with them also at that time (v. 26). Then shall Israel and the Gentiles know YAHWEH and HE will place HIS tabernacle in Israel forever more (v.v. 27-28).

The righteousness of YAHWEH will then be fully realized by all, for they will then understand that their righteousness came not by their own fulfillment of the law (Torah), but from the Right Hand and Holy Arm of YAHWEH, YAHshua Messiah.

Isaiah prophesied, "The word that Isaiah the son of Amoz saw concerning Judah and Jerusalem. And it shall come to pass in the last days, that the mountain of YAHWEH'S house shall be established in the top of the mountains, and shall be exalted above the hills; and all nations shall flow unto it. And many people shall go and say, Come ye, and let us go up to the mountain of YAHWEH, to the house of the Elohim of Jacob; and HE will teach us of HIS ways, and we will walk in HIS paths: for out of Zion shall go forth the law, and the word of YAHWEH from Jerusalem. And HE shall judge among the nations, and shall rebuke many people: and they shall beat their swords into plowshares, and their spears into pruninghooks: nation shall not lift up sword against nation, neither shall they learn war any more. O house of Jacob, come ye, and let us walk in the light of YAHWEH," 2:1-5.

When Christianity reads this Scripture, it understands that YAHWEH'S kingdom is to be ushered in through the Messiah. Yet they have stumbled at the law (Torah) in proclaiming that it is done away with since Isaiah does say that the law (Torah) will go forth from Jerusalem.

The Jews also have stumbled over this verse because they could see that the law (Torah) is not to be done away with as proclaimed by Christianity. Yet, they have failed to understand the righteousness of YAHWEH.

The Apostle Paul was putting everything into the proper perspective, yet, as Peter stated, his writings were hard to understand which the unlearned and unstable were wresting to their own destruction.

THE HOPE OF RIGHTEOUSNESS

Paul wrote that if anyone has repented and been baptized in the name of YAHshua, then that person has "put on YAHshua."(Gal. 3:27). Furthermore, he writes that they are sealed with the "earnest of the Spirit (2 Cor. 1:22, Eph. 1:13-14). He also says that it is the Holy Spirit of promise (Eph. 1:13). The Holy Spirit imparts Messiah in us, the HOPE of glory (Col. 1:27). Through the Spirit we wait for the HOPE OF RIGHTEOUSNESS (Gal. 5:5). Paul also reveals that we are saved by HOPE, but hope that is seen IS NOT HOPE (Ro. 8:23-25).

Under the Old Covenant, there was a law of circumcision of the flesh made with the hands of man. Under the New Covenant there is still a law of circumcision, but it is the circumcision of the heart made WITHOUT hands.

Under the Old Covenant, there was a law of animal sacrifice made by the hands of man. Under the New Covenant, there is a law of sacrifice made personally by YAHWEH through YAHshua and not man.

Under the Old Covenant there was the law of dress concerning phylacteries, tallits, borders of garments, etc. Under the New Covenant there is a law of dress, but it is not clothing made by man, but rather YAHshua is our dress.

The point is that the flesh cannot be rehabilitated. Men who seek after righteousness by the hands of man have and will fall short of the New Covenant and its hope and promises through YAHshua.

If we have received the Spirit of YAHWEH, then we ARE NOT righteous because of the flesh, but have received the hope of righteouness which IS TO COME.

SUMMARY

The writings of the Apostle Paul have long been misunderstood by the Christian and Jewish world. The Christians have had a tendency to forsake the law (Torah) while the Jews have forsaken the writings of Paul and the New Covenant. Paul was writing in "mysteries" which only the Elect can understand through the Spirit, "But we speak the wisdom of YAHWEH in a mystery, even the hidden wisdom, which YAHWEH ordained before the world unto our glory: Which none of the princes of this world knew: for had they known it, they would not have impaled the Sovereign of glory. But as it is written, Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which YAHWEH hath prepared for them that love Him. But YAHWEH hath revealed them unto us by His Spirit: for the Spirit searcheth all things, yea, the deep things of Elohim. For what man knoweth the things of a man, save the spirit of man which is in him? even so the things of Elohim knoweth no man, but the Spirit of Elohim. Now we have received, not the spirit of the world, but the spirit which is of Elohim; that we might know the things that are freely given to us of Elohim," 1 Cor. 2:7-12.

Paul reveals that there is a "law of sin" in the flesh. Therefore, no man can be declared righteous, no matter how much law (Torah) observance is employed. It is not our Torah observance, but rather, our faith in the last Adam, the Sovereign from Heaven that delivers us from death into life.

The New Covenant promise is that YAHWEH'S law (Torah) will be personally written in our hearts by the power of His Spirit given through YAHshua Messiah. The Torah is not done away, but neither can we earn salvation through its observance.

May YAHWEH bless you to see His Great Light.

By Jerry Healan