Do you live following Love or Law?
Recently I heard a classic message out of the book of Malachi. Mal.3:8 “Will a man rob God? Yet you are robbing Me!” You ask: “How do we rob You?” “[By not making the payments] of 10 percent and the contributions. The importance of tithing! The fact that the Church needs money to pay the bills and the ministers is a given but should we use Mal. 3:8 to support the need to give 10% of your money to the church?
Is tithing a law we should follow?
Should we pick and choose what Old Testament laws to follow and which ones we won’t?
Deut 21:18-21 “If a man has a stubborn and rebellious son who does not obey his father or mother….. bring him to the elders of his city, to the gate of his hometown. ….Then all the men of his city will stone him to death……
Most just ignore this Biblical Law, but not all.
Paul wrote: For sin will not rule over you, because you are not under law but under grace. Rom.6:14
So what does it mean to be under Grace and not the Law?
I believe it has something to do with the “Why” we do things and not the “What” we do.
As Paul wrote: So then, the law is holy, and the commandment is holy and just and good. Rom.7:12
There is Law that is placed upon us and law that is discovered within us.
As Paul wrote: For in my inner self I joyfully agree with God’s law. Rom.7:22
Following laws like tithing, honoring thy Father and Mother, Being faithful to your spouse, not committing adultery – is not what the message of Jesus.
Jesus said: But I tell you, everyone who looks at a woman to lust for her has already committed adultery with her in his heart. Matt.5:28
Simply not breaking the law is not what life is all about. Spirit Life is lived from the heart not the brain. Laws are brain things – The work of Christ is within the heart of man
Jer.24:7 I will give them a heart to know Me, that I am the LORD. They will be My people, and I will be their God because they will return to Me with all their heart.
Heb 8:10 “But this is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days,” says the Lord: “I will put My laws into their minds, and I will write them on their hearts, ….
Prov.23:7 7 For as he thinks in his heart, so is he. “ Eat and drink!” he says to you, But his heart is not with you.
Am I saying the law is bad? No. What I am saying is that the law is descriptive not directive. The law was not given for you to follow but for you to read and then discover these realities within your own heart. Its within your heart that Christ has hidden these things and they are meant to be discovered and lived out because they come from the depth of your being, they come from Spirit. The laws are not meant to be read and obeyed like a traffic sign would be.
Paul said in writing his first letter: I only want to learn this from you: Did you receive the Spirit by the works of the law or by hearing with faith? Are you so foolish? After beginning with the Spirit, are you now going to be made complete by the flesh? Gal.3:2-3
Paul calls works of the law “The Flesh” When Paul speaks of the flesh he is speaking of things external or things not coming from within your own spirit. The Galatians were being told to have the men circumcised because the Bible commanded it. Gen.17:14 If any male is not circumcised in the flesh of his foreskin, that man will be cut off from his people; he has broken My covenant.”
Paul makes clear the difference between Law and Love –
For a person is not a Jew who is one outwardly, and [true] circumcision is not something visible in the flesh. On the contrary, a person is a Jew who is one inwardly, and circumcision is of the heart—by the Spirit, not the letter. His praise is not from men but from God. Rom.2:28-29
The outward following the letter of the law has nothing to do with God –
True union with God is in Spirit expressed in Love.
DO IT BECAUSE YOU (your heart) WANTS TO NOT BECAUSE YOU (your mind thinks [ego]) ARE SUPPOSED TO!
To give out of the abundance of your heart is a joy and gift to God. To give because you think you are supposed to or you have been guilted into it is the true robbing of God.
How is that robbing God?
When you discover God within your heart you discover that you and the giver are one. From that revelation you give, not because you are supposed to, but because it is who you are. You don’t give to prove something your giving displays your real self. Following the Law takes that away – Law is then lifted up replacing Christ. The Law was meant to point us to God not be our God – The Spirit of Anti-Christ is that which replaces Christ, don’t let the law be that to you.
Who knows the difference between the giving of the widow and the rich man? – they do. Only you and God know why you do what you do, but isn’t that enough. Are your actions coming from a heart overflowing with the discovery of the Love of God buried deep within your being or are they the actions of a man leaning on his own understanding of what the Bible says is the right and godly thing to do. Again, only you and God know.
This entry was posted on January 18, 2011 by Eclectic Mind. It was filed under Bible, Bible Contradictions, Church Life, Disciples of Jesus Christ, Friends, House Church, Jehovah, Jesus Christ, Organic Church, Pagan Christianity, Reimagining Church, Religion, Simple Church, The Lord, The Word, Truth, Wise Sayings .