The Law


When I first came to the truth of the Bible and realized that we need to obey God's will to be saved, one of the things that I was unsure of, until I searched the scriptures, was whether or not I needed to keep the sabbath day or any of the other Old Testament commandments. As I knew the law was something God commanded the ancient Israelites to keep. But was it something Christians still needed to since Christ came?

First let's clarify what the law consists of. The law is comprised of three types of laws. The judicial, ceremonial and moral laws. The 10 commandments are part of these laws. There are approximately 613 total laws. So do we need to keep them or not you ask?

We read in Romans 6:14 KJB "For sin shall not have dominion over you: for ye are not under the law, but under grace."

After reading that you might be thinking "that clears things up, we don't need to keep the law."
You're right. And you're wrong.

Christians are no longer obligated to keep the judicial or ceremonial laws. We are however still obligated to keep the moral laws. Such as don't steal, don't murder, don't lie, honor thy mother and thy father, don't bear false witness, etc.

The moral laws are those that have to do with virtue. The ceremonial and judicial laws often reveal moral laws. For example in Leviticus 20:13 we have a judicial law that says "If a man also lie with mankind, as he lieth with a woman, both of them have committed an abomination: they shall surely be put to death; their blood shall be upon them." What is the moral law being taught here? That homosexuality is sinful. See how the judicial part is the putting to death someone who has committed the sin, this is the part of the law that is no longer required. But we are obligated not to committ the sin still (keeping the moral law).

What about the weekly sabbath? Is that a moral law? No it is not.

God's word (the Holy Bible) makes it clear that we are no longer obligated to keep the sabbath.

Colossians 2:16 KJB
"Let no man therefore judge you in meat, or in drink, or in respect of an holyday, or of the new moon, or of the sabbath days:"

From Ellicott's commentary on Colossians 2:16:
"It is obvious that St. Paul gives no hint of any succession of the Lord's Day to be, in any strict sense, a "Christian Sabbath." We know, indeed, that the Jewish Sabbath itself lingered in the Church, as having a kind of sacredness, kept sometimes as a fast, sometimes as a festival. But its observance was not of obligation. No man was to "judge" others in respect of it."

Christians are not obligated to keep the judicial or ceremonial laws.
Christians are obligated to keep the moral laws and the commandments/precepts taught in the NT.