I say, neither.

There seems to be a few sects of Christianity that are “Law/Gospel” oriented.  Just to name a few:

1.  7th Day Adventists
2.  Some sects of Calvinism
3.  Emerging “Returning to our Jewish Roots” movements.

Note the word, “movement”?

There are others, as well.  Some of those Christian sects can’t stand the thought of Christmas, or Easter, and they don’t eat bacon with their eggs, nor will they buy a ham sandwich at Subway.  Some of those Christian sects don’t like the Apostle Paul very much.  They are called legalists.  They all have one thing in common.  Their arguments are coming from their hatred for Catholics, and not the Bible itself.  Another one of their arguments is that God never changes, that is, if God set before us the Law of Moses, then we are to be obedient to the law of Moses, for God never changes.  Some of these sects tells us that Abraham had, or knew the Law of Moses, as they quote the following:

Genesis 26:5
 Because that Abraham obeyed my voice, and kept my charge, my commandments, my statutes, and my laws.

The words commandments, statutes, and laws is somehow equated to the Law of Moses?  The whole chapter of Galatians chapter 3 negates out that claim.  Moses was four generations later.

NOTE:   I have one very important thing to say regarding Abraham in Genesis 26:5, for those who think that Abraham had the law, but that it just wasn’t codified yet.  I make reference of Genesis 26:5 later, in which I will make mention of it then…just to keep you interested to read on.

Galatians 3:18-23
For if the inheritance be of the law, it is no more of promise: but God 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 God is one.  Is the law then against the promises of God? God forbid: for if there had been a law given which could have given life, verily righteousness should have been by the law.  But the scripture hath concluded all under sin, that the promise by faith of Jesus Christ might be given to them that believe.  But before faith came, we were kept under the law, shut up unto the faith which should afterwards be revealed.

The law kept faith out of the picture.  The law prohibited the inheritance of eternal life (promised land).

I’ve also found that when they preach on the subject of faith, they all have a common denominator of leaving out information.  I use scripture to counter what they leave out.  I was recently given the boot on a “Returning to Our Jewish Roots” blog, not for giving opinion, but by quoting scripture.  In a private email to the blog owner, I stated, “It’s hard for me to fathom people rejecting quoted scripture.”

Are we to be obedient to God?  Well, of course, we are.  To them, however, being “obedient” to God is equal to being “obedient” to the Law of Moses, and somehow that is supposed to be not only Good News, but Great News.  So, I will counter their good news, with the quoting of scripture.  We are to be obedient to the Law of Christ (Faith), not the Law of Moses (works).

So, to start things off with this article, here is one thing that they don’t want to tell you:

Acts 15:5
But there rose up certain of the sect of the Pharisees which believed, saying, That it was needful to circumcise them, and to command them to keep the law of Moses.

Acts 15:24
Forasmuch as we have heard, that certain which went out from us have troubled you with words, subverting your souls, saying, Ye must be circumcised, and keep the law: to whom we gave no such commandment:

Take, for example, that you have a bus schedule in your hand, and that you are at the bus stop at 1:48 P.M.  According to the bus schedule, the next bus is scheduled for a 2:00 P.M. arrival.  You believe the bus schedule.  You are just waiting for the bus to arrive at 2:00 P.M.  The conclusion is that you have faith in the bus schedule.

Faith is based on the promise (ASSURANCE) that the bus will arrive at 2:00 P.M., and that you are just waiting for it to arrive (HOPE).  You believe that the bus will arrive at 2:00 P.M.  THAT belief is based on the credence of the Bus Schedule.

Hebrews 11:1 (KJV) FAITH IS:
Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.

Strong’s Concordance Greek Ref #5287:  Assurance
Merriam-Webster’s Collegiate Dictionary, Eleventh Edition defines assurance as:  Pledge, Guarantee

Romans 8:24-25
For we are saved by hope: but hope that is seen is not hope: for what a man seeth, why doth he yet hope for?  But if we hope for that we see not, then do we with patience wait for it.

Hoped, Hope:
Strong’s Concordance Greek Ref #’s1679, 1680:  Expectation or confidence
Merriam-Webster’s Collegiate Dictionary, Eleventh Edition defines hope as:
to expect with confidence; Expectation is defined as:  Anticipation;   Anticipation is defined as:  The act of looking forward, and, visualization of a future event or state.

Hebrews 11:1 
Now FAITH IS:  The guarantee of things (substance/assurance) expected (hoped/waiting for).

Faith: Strong’s Concordance Greek Ref #4102:
Persuasion, i.e. credence. Merriam-Webster’s Collegiate Dictionary, Eleventh Edition defines credence as:  mental acceptance as true or real.

We are all familiar with the following verses:

Ephesians 2:8
For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God:

Ephesians 2:9
Not of works, lest any man should boast.

The Calvinists believe in a term called “Saving Faith”. The following is from a Calvinist believing website:

“Faith is a gift of God and not a work of man, so that no man can boast and God receives all the glory (Eph. 2:1-10).”

That is not what Ephesians 2:8-9 states.  That is what the Calvinists reword it to state. We non-Calvinists do not consider faith to be a gift, or a work.

The Calvinists boast about the word exegesis.  Dictionary.com defines Exegesis as, “critical explanation or interpretation of a text or portion of a text, especially of the Bible.”  But the Calvinists are expository driven, rather than topical driven.  I do both. The following topics will be covered in regards to this “saving faith” garbage.

What is the Righteousness of God?

Works vs. No Works

According to dictionary.com, one definition of “work” is:  a deed or performance, the word “deed” is defined as:  something that is done, performed, or accomplished; an act, and the word “do” is defined as:  To perform, to accomplish, to execute.

Abraham believed God.  He didn’t work.  He believed. Romans 4:3 and Galatians 3:6 and James 2:23 all state the following:

For what saith the scripture? Abraham believed God, and it was counted unto him for righteousness.

Note the word “it”.  “It” is simply his belief of the promise given to him by God.  What was the promise?  Seed, and Land, hence the terms, Promised Land, and Promised Seed.  A piece of real estate.  These promises are twofold.

1.  Carnal (Physical Land of Israel…with “specific” borders, and Isaac).
2.  Spiritual (Heaven…aka Eternal Life, and Jesus).

Romans 4:2
*For if Abraham were justified by works, he hath whereof to glory; but not before God.

*We see here that belief is not considered a work.    What is considered a work is explained below.

Note:  Let’s not get James 2:26 (Faith without works is dead) confused with Romans 4:2.  Abraham was indeed justified by “works” of James 2:26.  What does that mean?  It means that Abraham “lived” his belief.  The works that is being discussed in this post has nothing to do with the book of James.

A worker is one who works, right?  Well, the Bible states that a worker is one who is a “doer”, a doer of the work, not just a hearer.

We should all know that the Old Testament, aka, Old Covenant, First Covenant, begins in Exodus 20.  This is where God spoke to ALL of the children of Israel at Mt. Sinai. After God Spoke the Ten Commandments to ALL of the children of Israel, they were afraid that if God continued to speak to them, that they would die, so they asked if Moses would speak to them about what God wants of them, instead of God himself.

Exodus 20:19
And they said unto Moses, Speak thou with us, and we will hear: but let not God speak with us, lest we die. So, Moses continued to listen to God, and Moses gave the word of the Lord to ALL of the children of Israel.

Exodus 24:3
And Moses came and told the people all the words of the Lord, and all the judgments: and all the people answered with one voice, and said, All the words which the Lord hath said will we do.

Notice the last word in that verse, “do”. Later, in Deuteronomy 5, Moses once again reiterates what was spoken in Exodus 20 – 24. After that review, the children of Israel responds:

Deuteronomy 6:25
And it shall be our righteousness, if we observe to do all these commandments before the Lord our God, as he hath commanded us.

Again, notice the word, “do”.  That is works of righteousness.  Obedience to the law of Moses is known as works of Righteousness. If anyone can keep the law perfectly, then they have “earned” a wage, and God “owes” them eternal life.  That is why it is called “works”, or “deeds”.

Romans 4:4
Now to him that worketh is the reward not reckoned of grace, but of debt.

Romans 3:20
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.

Romans 3:23
For all have sinned.

Romans 6:23
the wages of sin is death

So, who can be obedient to the Law of Moses and get to heaven?  No one.

Galatians 2:16
a man is not justified by the works of the law…for by the works of the law shall no flesh be justified.

Galatians 3:10
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.

Remember the word, “do” from Exodus and Deuteronomy?  Anyone that attempts to be “obedient”, or, “do” works of righteousness, to the law of Moses is under a curse. And yet, the legalists affirm that God did not do away with the Law of Moses.  Well, according to various legalists, some laws were done away, while other laws are not.  They separate the laws into categories,  i.e., ceremony, stone, parchment, food, etc.  Some say that it is OK to eat all meats, while others think that having bacon with your eggs will get you to hell in a hand basket. Others say that only sacrifices were done away, while eating pork chops, or lobster with your steak is an abomination.

And how do they convince people?  Well the 7th Day Adventists ask, “Is it a sin to steal?”, to which we do indeed state, “Yes”.  Then they continue with the remaining 8 commandments before stating that it is therefore a sin to go to church on Sunday, telling people that they are hell bound if they step one foot in church on Sunday.  In regards to the Calvinists, they acknowledge that the Lord’s day is Sunday, so according to them, that is the ONLY commandment that was changed.

Then I have heard people say that if we “love” God, then we will be “obedient” to the Law of Moses, and this is somehow to be “a joy and a delight”?  Really?  A delight?  A joy?

Recently, on one of many “Restoring The Jewish Roots” blogs, by Gentiles pretending to be Jewish, a legalist told me this:

“it is not called the ‘old testament’, nor was it changed to that name except by one lost man’s interpretation”.

What is interesting about that statement, is that I heard that before, from Calvinists. Calvinists are about Law Plus Grace.  Most legalists will quote Romans 6:1 through HALF of Romans 6:2:

Romans 6:1-2 (half of verse 2)
What shall we say then? Shall we continue in sin, that grace may abound?  God forbid...(That is where they stop)

This is also demonstrated in Romans 6:15.  But what they fail to do is to read the rest of the chapter, plus Romans 7.  When they do that, they will see that under grace, that it is impossible to continue in sin, all because we are not under the law, and that the question in Romans 6:1 and 14 is a rhetorical question.  When we are under grace, we are not under the law.  In other words, you can’t break a law that does not exist.

1 John 3:9
Whosoever is born of God doth not commit sin; for his seed remaineth in him: and he cannot sin, because he is born of God.

Notice the words, “doth not”, and “cannot”.  It does not say, “should not”. Furthermore, I have been told that Abraham had the law, but it just wasn’t codified yet, that it was codified under Moses.  In addition, I’ve been told that Abraham stumbled at his faith, because he lied about Sarah, and did not consult God about providing him food before going to Egypt.  But when we read Genesis, he did not lie about Sarah.  She was his sister.  And the justification that Abraham gives in not disclosing that Sarah was his wife was because he did not feel that the fear of God was in that place.  Again, he believed God’s promise, and NOTHING was going to change that promise.  Abraham knew that the Pharaoh was not going to harm Sarah.  God would protect her, all due to the promise seed through Sarah, Isaac.  The promise was “unconditional”.  The Covenant of Circumcision came later, and that was based on the family line of Isaac receiving the promise of inheritance, not Ishmael, the first born.  Today, the physical land of Israel belongs to the Jews, promised by God.  Not to the Palestinians, promised by the UN, or whomever.

Note:  That is the “carnal”.  Remember, the spiritual, Jesus is the promised seed, and the promised land…is Heaven, aka eternal life, not a piece of real estate in the middle east.

Romans 4:19-20
And being not weak in faith
He staggered not at the promise of God through unbelief; but was strong in faith, giving glory to God;

Genesis 26:5
Because that Abraham obeyed my voice, and kept my charge, my commandments, my statutes, and my laws.

So, if we are to believe that Abraham had the law, but that it just wasn’t codified yet, then we can be led to believe that Abraham was sinless, when reading Genesis 26:5.  And yet, we are told “For all have sinned”.  Like I said above, Galatians 3 counters the claim that Abraham had the Law of Moses. Abraham sinned, too…but (See Romans 5:13 below).

So let’s test to see if Abraham had the law…it’s an easy test.  We will take a good look at the “codified” law, and see if Abraham really did OBEY the Law of Moses, before it was codified.

Leviticus 18:6
None of you shall approach to any that is near of kin to him, to uncover their nakedness: I am the Lord.

Leviticus 18:9
The nakedness of thy sister, the daughter of thy father, or daughter of thy
mother, whether she be born at home, or born abroad, even their
nakedness thou shalt not uncover.

Leviticus 18:11
The nakedness of thy father’s wife’s daughter, begotten of thy father, she is thy sister, thou shalt not uncover her nakedness.

Leviticus 20:17
And if a man shall take his sister, his father’s daughter, or his mother’s
daughter, and see her nakedness, and she see his nakedness; it is a
wicked thing; and they shall be cut off in the sight of their people: he
hath uncovered his sister’s nakedness; he shall bear his iniquity.

Deuteronomy 27:22
Cursed be he that lieth with his sister, the daughter of his father, or the
daughter of his mother. And all the people shall say, Amen.
And now, ABRAHAM, who obeyed God’s commandments, statutes, ordinances, and “TORAH”?

Genesis 20:12
And yet indeed she is my sister; she is the daughter of my father, but not the daughter of my mother; and she became my wife.
And yet, God never informed Abraham of this grievous sin, but blessed brother and sister with a promised inbred son.  According to the codified law, Abraham is cursed, because he did a wicked thing, and should be cut off from the sight of his people, and shall bear his iniquity…yet, he was NOT cursed at all, but BLESSED.  God never told him about this sin, but gave brother/sister an inbred child instead.

And somehow we are to equate this with Genesis 26:5?

Genesis 26:5 (again, for those who missed it)
Because that Abraham obeyed my voice, and kept my charge, my commandments, my statutes, and my laws.

When was Abraham judged accordingly regarding Sister Sarah? There was no judgment, and why? Romans 5:13, and 4:15, and many others.

Can we finally conclude that Abraham did NOT have the Law, and the law is NOT equated to Genesis 26:5?  Can we also conclude that God never told Abraham anything about forbidding sexual concorse with sisters?  Can we also conclude, based on the two previous, that there was no forgiveness or mercy NECESSARY in this case?  Why or why not?  Hint…keep reading.

Did Abraham go to church on Saturday?  Did Abraham observe the Sabbath?  What Sabbath?  The first mention of MAN observing any Sabbath, or taking a “rest” is in the book of Exodus.

Exodus 16:23
And he said unto them, This is that which the Lord hath said, To morrow is the rest of the holy sabbath unto the Lord:

Romans 5:13
(For until the law sin was in the world: but sin is not imputed when there is no law.

When was “until”?  Until Abraham?  Note the word “Imputed”.  I would conclude that Abraham did not have the law…of Moses…not one bit.  The law is not of faith.  Faith and Law is contrary to one another.  It is faith vs. law, not law plus faith/grace. The Hebrews were slaves in Egypt.  Did the Egyptians allow the Hebrews to take Saturday off?  No.  There was no such thing as a 4th Commandment yet.

Old Testament (The Law of Moses(Works)) vs. New Testament (The Law of Christ(Faith))

Hebrews 8, 9, and 10 addresses Old Testament vs. New Testament . The Jewish Roots folks(Gentiles pretending to be Jewish) are confusing the words, “The Law of Moses” with the word, “Torah (law)”. In other words, law vs. law.  Sound confusing? Torah!, Torah!, Torah! (Wasn’t that a movie?).

The owner of the blog told me:
“Torah simply means…INSTRUCTIONS” Jesus taught…TORAH.”

However, I was taught, by Jews themselves, that the word “Torah” simply means “First Five Books”, hence the Latin word, Pentateuch, penta meaning “five”, teuchos, meaning tool, vessel, book.

I responded with:
“Your teachings are trying to equate the Law of Moses with the Torah, and that is not true. They are two separate things. The Law of Moses is “within” the Torah, but it is not the Torah.”

Further, I explained:

Matthew 5:17-18
Think not that I am come to destroy the law (Torah), or the prophets: I am not come to destroy, but to fulfil. For verily I say unto you, Till heaven and earth pass, one jot or one tittle shall in no wise pass from the law, till all be fulfilled.

I included the above verse because legalists are always referencing this verse.)

“Jesus makes it clear that he didn’t come to destroy the “Torah or the Prophets” (Tanakh).  When it is stated in scripture, “The Law and the Prophets”, it is discussing Genesis to Malachi.  The Law, or Torah, is simply Genesis to Deuteronomy.  The Prophets is Joshua to Malachi.  Put both together, it is Tanakh, or TNK.  The T stands for Torah.  The N and K stand for writings and prophets. However, within the First Five Books (Torah, or Law) is the Old Testament/Covenant/Law of Moses. You  are trying to equate the Law of Moses with the Torah.  The Law of Moses is “within” the Torah, but it is not the Torah.” So, when Jesus discusses Matthew 5:17-18, I see that many folks delete the word “prophets” from the verse, focusing on the word, “law”, as in The Law of Moses, and they falsely conclude that Jesus came to fulfill the Ten Commandments, i.e., the law.  I hear this time and time and time again from many folks, legalists or not.  This is where they are WRONG!  Once you put the word “prophets” back in the verse, properly using it as TNK, you will see that Jesus came to fulfill prophecy of himself from Genesis to Malachi, not to fulfill the Ten Commandments.  But he did indeed come to destroy the Law of Moses and replace it with The Law of Christ (Galatians 6:2), which is totally different than the Old Covenant, hence, New Testament.  The law of Christ is known as the Law of freedom (liberty (James 1:25; 2:12)). “The Law (Torah) and the Prophets” is a phrase used several times, even with the Apostle Paul.  Many are getting confused with “The Law (Torah), vs. “The Law [of Moses].  The Law of Moses is the Old Testament.  The Old Testament does not begin with Genesis 1.  Identifying the Old Testament with Genesis 1 to Malachi is extremely common place with all of Christendom.

Now, lets look at the book of Hebrews:

Hebrews 9:1
the first covenant

Hebrews 9:15
new testament

Hebrews 9:15
first testament

Hebrews 9:16-20
For where a testament is, there must also of necessity be the death of the testator.  For a testament is of force after men are dead: otherwise it is of no strength at all while the testator liveth.  Whereupon neither the first testament was dedicated without blood.  For when Moses had spoken every precept to all the people according to the law, he took the blood of calves and of goats, with water, and scarlet wool, and hyssop, and sprinkled both the book, and all the people,  Saying, This is the blood of the testament which God hath enjoined unto you.

Exodus 24:8
 And Moses took the blood, and sprinkled it on the people, and said, Behold the blood of the covenant, which the Lord hath made with you concerning all these words.

What words?  From Exodus 20, beginning with the Ten Commandments.

Hebrews 8:7
For if that first covenant had been faultless, then should no place have been sought for the second.

Hebrews 8:8
new covenant

Hebrews 8:13
In that he saith, A new covenant, he hath made the first old. Now that which decayeth and waxeth old is ready to vanish away.

*Hebrews 10:9
He taketh away the first, that he may establish the second.

*Ding, Ding, Ding, Ding.  He took away the first, calling it old, so that he may establish the second, calling it new.

The New Covenant is NOT a RENEWED Covenant of the Old.

Jeremiah 31:31-32
Behold, the days come, saith the Lord, 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;

Therefore, it cannot be law plus grace/faith.  Law was taken away, so that grace may be established.

2 Corinthians 3:14
But their minds were blinded: for until this day remaineth the same vail untaken away in the reading of the old testament

First/Old Covenant/Testament vs. Second/New Covenant/Testament.  The first/old covenant/testament is the Law of Moses, not the Torah.

No Works

1 John 3:4
sin is the transgression of the law.

Romans 3:20
the law is the knowledge of sin.

Romans 5:13
For until the law sin was in the world: but sin is not imputed when there is no law.

Romans 4:15
where no law is, there is no transgression.

Romans 4:8
Blessed is the man to whom the Lord will not impute sin.

Romans 6:7
For he that is dead is freed from sin.

Romans 6:11
Likewise reckon ye also yourselves to be dead

Romans 7:4
ye also are become dead to the law

Galatians 2:19
For I through the law am dead to the law,

Romans 7:8
For without the law sin was dead.

Galatians 2:21
if righteousness come by the law, then Christ is dead in vain.

Romans 3:21
But now the righteousness of God without the law is manifested

Romans 4:5
faith is counted for righteousness.

Romans 4:13
not to Abraham, or to his seed, through the law, but through the righteousness of faith.

Romans 4:16
Therefore it is of faith, that it might be by grace

Galatians 3:12
the law is not of faith

Galatians 3:21
if there had been a law given which could have given life, verily righteousness should have been by the law.

Romans 4:2
For if Abraham were justified by works, he hath whereof to glory; but not before God.

Romans 4:5-6
But to him that worketh not, but believeth on him that justifieth the ungodly, his faith is counted for righteousness.  Even as David also describeth the blessedness of the man, unto whom God imputeth righteousness without works,

Romans 11:6
And if by grace, then is it no more of works: otherwise grace is no more grace. But if it be of works, then it is no more grace: otherwise work is no more work.

Faith is NOT imputed.

There is ONLY two things that can be “IMPUTED” to us.
1. Sin
2. Righteousness

Righteousness can only be imputed in two different ways.
1. Works (DEEDS/OBEYING/OBSERVING) The Law of Moses
2. Faith

For all have sinned (NOT OBEYED THE LAW OF MOSES). Then how are we made righteous? Faith alone without the Law of Moses. We are now under the Law of Christ, which is the Law of Faith, which is the Law of Freedom (liberty) and the COMMANDMENTS of Jesus is a singular commandment: Love Thy Neighbor as Thyself.  Now, some will say that we have two commandments, and I left out the Love God part.  However, the way that 1 John explains it, is that we prove that we love God by loving people. For Love fulfills ALL, not just the parchment, but the stones, too, the law of Moses. The singular commandment of Love is the delight, the joy, not obeying the Law of Moses, which is a curse.

Galatians 4:21
Tell me, ye that desire to be under the law, do ye not hear the law?

Why was the Law of Moses instituted?  Was it to bring about morality, so that sin would decrease? Many seem to think so.  They call it “God’s Standards”.  Really?

Romans 5:20 (NIVr)
The law was given so that sin would increase.

Did Abraham really need a law that stated, “Thou Shalt Not Steal” to know that it is wrong to steal?  Think about that.

Romans 2:14-16
For when the Gentiles, which have not the law, do by nature the things contained in the law, these, having not the law, are a law unto themselves:  Which shew the work of the law written in their hearts, their conscience also bearing witness, and their thoughts the mean while accusing or else excusing one another;) In the day when God shall judge the secrets of men by Jesus Christ according to my gospel.

By nature, they obey laws that they don’t even have.  It’s called a conscience.  And Jesus judges them by what they know, not by what they don’t know, and Paul calls that good news (gospel), and these people don’t even know God, or Jesus.  So, do people who don’t know God, or Jesus, automatically go to hell because they are sinners?  NO.  But some seem to think so.


Galatians 4:21
Tell me, ye that desire to be under the law, do ye not hear the law?

Bottom line:
Faith is KNOWING that we are going to get what we are waiting for.  Obeying the law of Moses is earning your way, not knowing for sure.

Acts 15:5
But there rose up certain of the sect of the Pharisees which believed, saying, That it was needful to circumcise them, and to command them to keep the law of Moses.

Acts 15:24
Forasmuch as we have heard, that certain which went out from us have troubled you with words, subverting your souls, saying, Ye must be circumcised, and keep the law: to whom we gave no such commandment:

The law of Moses is Bondage.  Jesus set us free from the law.  Flesh vs. Spirit

Galatians 4:24
for these are the two covenants; the one from the mount Sinai, which gendereth to bondage