CHICKENS I SAY!
You ever seen a yard full of chickens? You know, all those white and orange and red birds, walking around pecking the ground, hunting for a kernel of corn, or feed?
It is interesting to me to see Christian people acting like chickens in a yard, as they start quoting one or two scriptures that they demand people live by. I’m not against scripture, but usually it is their favorite hammer to beat people with. You know that one scripture that defends against a particular pet peeve of theirs. I used to do this a lot in my spiritual youth: “Hunt-N Peckers” I call them. They hunt and peck around the Bible finding that one verse, or a passage they can bend and take out of context, to force someone to conform to their understanding. It really gets sad when “Christians” reach back into the Law and bring it forward to “Hammer time.” Cue the music, close your eyes and see MC Hammer dancing sideways, back and forth across the screen of your mind.
I refuse to post the Ten Commandments in the church we planted. I won’t do it. (well, we will for a children’s lesson or a sermon series, but that’s it) I also don’t get real upset when it can’t be posted in any local court house, except that some of the judicial ideas this country were founded on are found in them; or so I’m told.
I just can’t get past the idea that these represent the Law from which Christ died to set me free.
Wiped them out he did
Colossians 2:13-16 (NKJV)
13 And you, being dead in your trespasses and the uncircumcision of your flesh, He has made alive together with
Him, having forgiven you all trespasses, 14 having wiped out the handwriting of requirements that was against us,
which was contrary to us. And He has taken it out of the way, having nailed it to the cross. 15 Having disarmed
principalities and powers, He made a public spectacle of them, triumphing over them in it. 16 So let no one judge you
in food or in drink, or regarding a festival or a new moon or sabbaths,
Jesus himself said in
Matthew 5:18 (NIV)
18 For truly I tell you, until heaven and earth disappear, not the smallest letter, not the least stroke of a pen, will by
any means disappear from the Law until everything is accomplished.
In saying this he let us know that the Law was in effect UNTIL he paid the price. Once he paid the price, it was over. Done! Finito!! No mas!! Nailed to the Cross. I am not subject to it. That is exactly what he said when he said on the cross, “It is finished!” He wasn’t talking about the beatings, or the nailing, or the living, he was talking about paying the price. The blood of bulls and goats cannot take away the sins of man, nor can the annual sacrifice of those animals, they only serve to remind us that we are sinners.
Think of it as a debt that you owe God; you can’t pay the principle because you are a broken human being. You aren’t perfect. You can only pay the interest each year with your sheep and goats, and bulls and doves. You need the principle paid in order to stop the interest from accruing. Jesus lived a perfect life. No sin! He can pay the price if he is gracious enough. And he is. Who but for the joy that was set before him, endured the cross, scorned it’s shame and is seated at the right hand of God the father (Hebrews 12:2) What possible joy could he have been talking about while looking towards Calvary? YOU! He was looking through the cross to you. He wanted to save you. He saw you there. He wanted to make the debt that you owed God stop!! HE LOVES YOU!
So after he goes through all that to do away with the regulations of the written code, the Law, the Law of Moses, the Law of sin and death, why would I post them on the walls of the very place you should come to find freedom?
The LAW just holds you down and reminds you that you were a sinner separated from God. The Law served to condemn us, to teach us we are sinners. Not any more.
Galatians 3:23-25 (NKJV)
23 But before faith came, we were kept under guard by the law, kept for the faith which would afterward be
revealed. 24 Therefore the law was our tutor to bring us to Christ, that we might be justified by faith. 25 But after faith
has come, we are no longer under a tutor.
And what about those people that still reach back into the Law for one Law to control others with? The Bible says when you reach back to use the Law to control the free, you prove that you don’t know God.
Galatians 5:4 (NIV)
You who are trying to be justified by the law have been alienated from Christ; you have fallen away from grace.
Because once you reach for one Law, you have to keep all 613. Oooops, you thought there were only 10? No, there are 613. And if you reach for one you get all of them; they are inseparable. One unit.
Galatians 3:10-11 (NIV)
10 For all who rely on the works of the law are under a curse, as it is written: “Cursed is everyone who does not
continue to do everything written in the Book of the Law.” 11 Clearly no one who relies on the law is justified before
God, because “the righteous will live by faith.”
You have been set free, why would you hang the shackles up for everyone to worship? Why would you threaten to put them back on people whom Christ died to save?
I do believe that freedom is not my excuse for low living, no doubt. But then, You and I aren’t the judge or jury, we share an invitation and the Word: Jesus set you free from the Law, so I will not hang them in the church.
“Love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.” This is what Jesus said was the greatest commandment, “and the second is like it: Love your neighbor as yourself.”
I’ll hang that everywhere!!