Chapter eight verses seven through nine: For centuries the word “fault” found in verse 7 has been used to “prove” that the Lord “nailed to the cross.” The Institutional Church has put forth this deadly error as “Thus saith the Lord” because she refuses to study the following 6 verses where the words “they,” “them” and “their” plainly show that the fault was not with the Law, but rather with the people who were required to obey it.
Before examining those and other verses relative to the subject we must understand the nature of a covenant–who is involved in it, what are its rules of engagement and what is necessary for it to remain in effect. A covenant is a formal and binding agreement entered into by two or more persons or groups. The covenant states what is expected of both parties. If either of the parties (persons or groups) defaults (note the word “fault”) by failing to adhere to the particulars of the covenant the covenant is automatically nullified. Church people, not bothering to study verses 8-13 (or having rejected them), point to verse 7 as “proof” that God’s Law, having a supposed “fault,” automatically nullified it. But let us “Study to show thyself approved of God” (2 Tim. 2:15). These words were written by the Apostle Paul to the Apostle Timothy. Surely what was necessary for these two giants of the faith is necessary for the rest of us.
In verse 8 Paul tells us that the “fault” found in the first covenant was “them”–the “House of Israel and the House of Judah” who, along with God, had been the two entities involved in the Mount Sinai Covenant established soon after the Israelites had been delivered from Egyptian slavery. God (later known as Jesus of Nazareth) told the 3,000,000 or so Israelites gathered at the foot of the mountain that if they would “obey My voice” they would be His people and He would be their God. The people agreed to do whatever He told them to do (Exo. 19:5-8). He then audibly proclaimed to them His Ten Commandment Law (Exo. 20:1-17).
At this point it is necessary to explain another aspect of the Law that has also been overlooked or rejected by professing Christendom. We find this vital information in Deuteronomy 5 where Moses is reminding the people of the covenant (vs 2) God had made with them on Mt. Sinai, also known as Mt. Horeb. In the following verses Moses repeated God’s Words spoken from the mountain–the Ten Commandments. Then in verse 22 he ended his speech with these words: “… and He (God) ADDED NO MORE.” The Ten Commandments were perfect. Nothing more needed to be added to them. The Lord had declared that if the people obeyed His voice/Words they would be “… a peculiar treasure unto Me above all people … a kingdom of priests and a holy nation” (Exo. 19:5,6). Now let us go to Galatians 3:19 where we are told that the Lord had made an ADDITION to the Ten Commandment Covenant which involved the sacrifice of animals and why He made the addition: “What purpose did the (sacrificial) law serve? It was ADDED (to the Ten Commandment Law) BECAUSE OF TRANSGRESSIONS (SINS) until the Seed (Jesus) would come” to earth to eliminate the need for blood sacrifices. The “law” referred to in the remainder of Galatians 19 refers to the sacrificial law, not the Ten Commandments which can never be done away with because they give us God’s definition of sin and righteousness: “To transgress (break) the Law is sin, for sin is the transgression of the Law” (1 Jn. 3:4). In summary: TO OBEY THE LAW IS RIGHTEOUSNESS; TO BREAK THE LAW IS SIN. Sin produces death. Righteousness produces life. One’s attitude toward God’s moral Law (10 Commandments) determines whether one lives eternally or dies in the Lake of Fire.
The first covenant was nullified because of Israel’s sins. Note that the “fault” found in the covenant was not found in the Law itself, but rather in the people–“them.” “They” failed to fulfil their part of the covenant, thereby voiding it. Now what? Future postings will answer that question. L.J.