Of Law and Grace

There are many today who are trapped in some type of sexual sin that justify their continued practice under the belief that keeping the commandments of God no longer applies since we are all under grace.

Proponents of such beliefs attempt to eliminate the prohibitions outlined in Leviticus and in Paul’s letters to the Corinthians and to the Romans by quoting Scripture, albeit entirely out of context. Using Romans 6:14 for instance, those who work to justify their lifestyle choices attempt to show this passage as a clear indication that grace is the antithesis of the law, and therefore attests to the law’s irrelevance today.

But is that accurate?

Paul, as well as other NT writers (and Jesus Himself), made it abundantly clear that we are still to obey the commands of the law, including those outlined as moral laws in Leviticus. God’s morals do not change over time. What He commanded then He expects now.

In the sixth chapter of Romans, Paul is writing about being united with Christ. This union brings about a new life (Romans 6:4), and those who profess to be in this union are no longer to be committed to the slavery of sin, for the sake of grace being extolled (Romans 6:1; 6:6). The implication Paul makes is that the old self—prior to accepting Jesus Christ as Savior—walked in darkness as a slave to sin, but once Jesus was accepted by the individual they were under a new Righteous Master, that of our Lord Jesus Christ (Romans 6:19-20). The Law condemned, but the grace of Christ gave them a new life.

If we truly submit our bodies as living sacrifices to Jesus (Romans 12:1), we will no longer wish to openly rebel against our Lord by remaining in such sexual sin as outlined in God’s commandments. Consider our Lord’s own words expressed in John’s Gospel on this subject: Look at verses John 14:15 and John 15:10. John also wrote of this topic in 1 John 2:3-5 and in 1 John 5:3.

Being under grace means we are no longer under the dominion of the Law. We who are under grace do not allow sin to reign in our bodies, but are now slaves to righteousness (Romans 6:19). We no longer face condemnation, but are now justified because of the finished work of Jesus Christ on our behalf

But the key to this is are we united with Christ? To be united with Him means we no longer submit, in habitual fashion, our bodies to impurity and lawlessness. Rather, we who are under grace submit ourselves to lawfulness, to righteousness—we submit ourselves to the clear teaching of God’s Word, even in Leviticus. Properly understood, Romans 6:14 offers no support for those who are trying to justify their immoral sexual desires, including homosexuality.

The moral laws of God will never be irrelevant or outdated: "For truly, I say to you,until heaven and earth pass away, not an iota, not a dot, will pass from the Law until all is accomplished." ~ Matthew 5:18