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November 22, 2021 7:00 pm
Dr. Sam Horn finishes a series entitled “O How I Love Thy Law” with a message titled “How do We Relate to the Ten Commandments?,” from 1 Timothy 1:8.
Welcome to The Daily Platform from Bob Jones University in Greenville, South Carolina. The school was founded in 1927 evangelist Dr. Bob Jones Senior's intent was to make a school where Christ would be the center of everything, so he established daily chapel services today. That tradition continues with fervent biblical preaching from the University Chapel platform today on The Daily Platform work, including a study entitled, oh how I love thy law, which is been a study of the 10 Commandments. Dr. Sam Horn will be summarizing our study of the 10 Commandments and how we as Christians should relate to them reaching your president Steve Pettit will introduce him well in just a moment.
Dr. Horn is going to come and conclude our series that we had all semester on the theme. Oh how I love thy law for the believer, the law of God is something that we should love but we should love it in the light of something couple days ago I was stuck in a hotel room up in Milwaukee Wisconsin during a blizzard and I was reading my Bible and I came to the book of Exodus and I did a little study on the mercy seat, the ark of the covenant had two angels on top of it.
The Angels actually faced one another with their wings spread out, but the Angels did not look at each other. They actually were looking down. What were the Angels looking at well below them was what is called the mercy seat, a slab of gold below the mercy seat was a copy of the 10 Commandments, the law, but they weren't looking at the law they were looking at something else. They were actually looking at the blood that was sprinkled on top of the mercy seat because above the law.
There is actually mercy you know Angels have a hard time understanding mercy because Angels deal injustice but God deals in mercy and justice. And God looks at the law through the lens of his mercy because he forgives, but that's not what put me on shouting Grail because you fast-forward to the book of John, and when the ladies came into the tomb after Jesus had resurrected from the dead. There were actually two angels in that one was at the feet of where Jesus is where he lay in the other was at the head where he lay, and what were those two angels looking at. They were looking at the mercy seat Jesus but where was he. He wasn't there he had risen and he fulfilled the law and in him is the fulfillment of the law and Christ for us is everything.
So that's how I see the law fulfilled in Christ righteousness in him putting that righteousness in my heart and to be like Christ is to fulfill the law. What a glorious truth we have in Christ, so that's all I want to preach on the wall, let Dr. Horn come and do the rest of you come from a church that is deeply southern can I see your hands if you come from a church you have you been in one of churches and you just heard Dr. Pettit say that there would actually be shouting somebody it holler out now that dog will hunt or they'd say put another quarter in that meter or just park right there, or somebody might say some shout something out but as for me I'm good is it right under that spout where the glorious coming-out so you heard some great truth is we get started this morning and ask you to take your Bible to first Timothy chapter 1 and while you're turning the first of the wine. I hope that our semester series on loving God's law and thinking about God's laws for true life is been normative. I hope it's been instructive and I hope it's been encouraging to you until all of us as we strive together to live gospel shaped lives. I want to go all the way back to the beginning of our time together and remind you that we spent our semester and seeing answering a foundational question and that question is this why study a topic as familiar as the one that we are studying the 10 Commandments in our answer in part had to do with the fact that while almost everyone is universally familiar with the 10 Commandments.
Most people do not really know them in a surprising number of evangelical Christians do not understand them and therefore do not live them in their lives in ways that reflect God's intention. So that's where we started and we spent our entire semester looking at each command individually to make sure that we understood and we knew the content of what God's law.
God's moral law is laying out for us now as we come to the end of this series, I want to bring us to a second question sort of disorder. Close the parentheses and that Chris question is this. Now that we now that we know the content of the law. What are we to do with this law. How are we to relate to the 10 Commandments.
This is precisely the question that a number of years ago, a New York journalist named Ajay Jacobs sent out to answer as he can contemplated the place.
The Torah should play in his life, especially given his Jewish heritage. Now this is a New York journalist, to my knowledge she does not know the Lord, but he was curious about his heritage and so he decided that he would find out what his life would be really like if he tried to obey all the rules in the Bible for an entire year. So he sat down and he read through the Bible and he wrote down every rule, every guideline every expectation that he could come up with in the Bible.
Now his last actually had more than the Old Testament law had he had 700 rules on a list that was 72 pages long, and he set out to obey them literally for an entire year and then he wrote a book about his experience name of that book is the year of living biblically.
One man's humble class to follow the Bible as literally as possible know this book became a New York Times bestseller only tell you what he observed. He said that some rules were wives. Some rules were completely baffling. Some rules were difficult and some I violated at least once a day so you some of the rules that that he came up with that were baffling. He one of the baffling rules they him was this you shall not wear a garment made of mixed fabric. Leviticus 19. He said I first got this applied to any mixed fabric so I cleared out my closet of all poly cotton T-shirts, but it turned out that the prohibition was against wool and linen so so sadly I had to embargo my only good suit for an entire year and so he went around wearing a robe like you saw on the cover of that book for an entire year here were rules that he had no trouble keeping said these rules that I had no issue with thou shalt not marry your sisters wife.
Leviticus 18 is that it helped that my wife did not have a sister Levitical food laws. He said you shall not eat eagles or vultures or Raven owls, storks or bats. No problem here were the difficult ones that he found is that I really had trouble with the do not trim the corners of your beard my rabbinical beard became wildly uncomfortable and they said no and I really had trouble with was stoning adulterers. The Bible says you have to stone adulterers so how do you do that in my year of living biblically said I was at a park one day and I found someone who told me he was an adulterer and and so I use the paddle and I threw it at and I still do. He said these are the ones that were impossible to keep.
He said the Bible says you shall not lie in once I started keeping track the number of lies was astonishing.
I lied to everyone strangers. My wife, my three-year-old when he said can we watch TV.
Why can we watch TV while you can't watch TV because it's broken when it really wasn't broke. You shall not covet. You said this is like asking someone, not the breeze, especially in New York, New York is a city that runs on coveting on a typical day I covet everything so you can see what one individual wrestled with maybe a humorous way as he tried to take these laws and put them in practices life. But what about a genuine Christian about somebody like like you or me who who goes to church and here's God's word on a regular basis out. How do the average believe I will. How does the average believer feel about the 10 Commandments and you know sometimes we look at these commandments becomes immediately obvious that that they're not very popular Alister bag in his helpful work on the 10 Commandments observe this Christian people have an on informed affirmation of the 10 Commandments he said. They know that they should be part of our public life. They are deeply offended when they are removed from our schools and public buildings. They realize they should play a part in our personal lives, but they aren't quite sure what that part looks like no murder, no adultery seems clear enough, but how and where do the other commands fit and that's where we are this morning so what do we do with this law that we have been studying for the entire semester.
Paul had an answer for that. In first Timothy 18 heat.
He said we know that the law is good. If a man use it lawfully.
So how do we use this good law lawfully. What is its function and relevance to me as a Christian. And so this morning we want to begin by understanding that using the law properly means I've got understand and remind myself of its biblical function in the law has two biblical functions.
At least we want to look at two of them this morning one of its functions is to produce reverence that leads to obedience before God in Exodus chapter 20 MM of the story of how the people of God came to the mountain where Moses really see the law that mountain was filled with with thunderings and lightnings, and it was covered with clouds and the people were terrified and Moses went up into that mountain receive the laws of God and he came back down and delivered those laws to the people and the people said to him, we are terrified of this.
We we saw the thunder and we saw the lightning and and we don't want God to speak to us directly.
We want him to speak to you and we want you to speak to sunbath because were terrified that we will die and Moses said this Senate of the people, fear not, for God is come to prove or to test you that his fear may be before your faces that you said not so the point to the law was was not to make people holy. It was to take a redeemed people and create in them a holy reverence not not a terror not not not a sort of paralyzing fear, but an awesome reverence for the God who would give them a law like this. It's to produce reverence that leads to obedience and then it's to prescribed boundaries for loving relationships in life. Leviticus 19 to God says to his redeemed people. You shall be holy, for I the Lord your God am holy God is speaking to people that he redeemed you speaking to people that he owned and he had purchased for himself. He is speaking to people with whom he had come to dwell. It's as though God is saying to them, you belong to me and because of that, and more importantly because I belong to you and I dwell with you. Be like me.
I created you for this when you were first created. I made you in my image and I intended for that likeness to affect every part about you and your personal life. Your family life in your worship of me in the way that you relate to others, every part of your life was designed so that you would reflect me so because you belong to me and because I belong to you. Be holy. So what is that actually look like on Monday morning or on Friday afternoon at five. We were just doing our normal everyday life. What does this actually look like and and here's where the moral law of God comes in the play it it helps me know how to love God supremely. That's the point of the first four commandments that we spent time looking at the semester.
This this law helps me to know and to love my neighbor selflessly until it talks to me directly about how the holiness of God and how the image of God in me relates to other people and shapes those relationships and that's exactly what Commandments five through nine are intended and then this law functions to help me to relate properly to myself to bring my own soul back into its its original intent with God so that I would find my full satisfaction in him and that's the whole point to the 10th commandment, that we would find full satisfaction and lasting joy in God and nothing else.
And so we must know how the law functions if were going to use it properly and then the second thing that has to happen is we have to understand and comprehend the actual purpose of the lots multi-faceted purpose and Dr. Pettit mentioned this in his opening kind comments but but maybe what we can do is say that the law is actually revealing something. The log does something, but it also reveals something so what does the law reveal and JI Packer in his helpful book on the 10 Commandments is a very useful way of understanding that said this, the law reveals the true nature of God. If you really want to know what God is like. If you understand his character and and and how God is is is in himself. The moral law of God is based on his character in one of its primary purpose is to show you that character and in the reason that we know it is this or we needed is this. We have an amazing propensity to define God on our own terms. We have an amazing propensity to make God in our own image. How many times if you run into somebody and you start talking about some aspect of God and that person looks at you and just as well. I could never worship a God like that I just could never worship a God who send somebody to hell just because they made a mistake or I don't understand how a loving God could ever send somebody to help who lives on the other side of the planet who's never had a Bible who's never heard the gospel before I just don't understand how a loving God could do that and I know the Bible teaches that, but that doesn't fit in my framework of God. And so that's not the way I think of God, and we make God in her own image and all of a sudden these 10 moral commandments. The moral law of God comes and says no let me tell you exactly what I am like so they reveal the true nature of God by drunk demonstrating his character and declaring his holiness and displaying his justice and reminding about hit up reminding us of his love. These were loving laws that were given to her redeemed people so they reveal the nature of God and then they reveal life as God intended it to be live. I it's not just a God is telling you about himself. He's actually in these laws telling us about us. These laws come from the same person who created us and designed us review back to the very beginning of the Pentateuch that is made absolutely clear that the designer of the universe. Also design the image bears and basically reminds us repeatedly that we are made in his image, and the 10 Commandments, the moral law of God are actually revealing to you how you were designed to live. You were designed.
You were tailor-made to have a unique and exclusive relationship with God. You were made a worshiper you. You were intended to take your life and bear about in your life. The name of God and all of the other commandments flow out of that you were designed to love your neighbor. You were designed to be a truth teller. You were designed to live in all of the ways that are actually prescribed for you in the 10 Commandments and so it's like this in the original design that that God had for you, you at least 10 Commandments would go hand in glove. They would be the spiritual software that drives your life and there would be no conflict in your heart with these laws so what happened and the answer is the fall you believed a lie you being the human race man believed the law ally and instead of submitting to the moral laws of God. God became sort of the enemy.
He became the one that is keeping us from happiness.
And so now we depart from his moral laws in an effort to find freedom and liberty and we bring in a corrupted software that destroys everything. I mean, think about the immense amount of sorrow and pain that comes into your own life and the emptiness that comes in your own life when you live in total disregard to these commandments we think about this. Think about the pain that comes into a marriage when somebody violates the commandment to not commit adultery.
Think about the pain. Your marriage was not designed for that God had a completely different design and the 10 Commandments are the moral code that makes life work the way it was designed and that brings us to the third thing that the law does it it actually reveals our true standing before God. I mean, when we when we look at the original design and the intent that God had for his image bears and the moral law that he wrote on their conscience and that he wrote down on tablets of stone and then we come after the fall and we put those two side to side, we begin to understand that the lot reveals something awful about us we we stand before that lawfully expose every motive, every action we stand before that law exposes truce breakers and lawbreaking.
We are are are rendered culpable and guilty and under the sentence, the just sentence of condemnation that that is God. God unjustly has condemned us to a death sentence. This is not like at a nice, quiet, gentle, grow old and die idea. Here, the idea of condemnation is the idea of a death sentence, you are.
You have been consigned to spiritual death and and and and that's an execution by the by the judge and we are justly condemned.
We are desperately hopeless and helpless and and when we come to the law that reveals all of this and we realize that it was intended to work with us. We come to the law and the law has absolutely no power to help when we see ourselves this way the law has no power to help us. In fact, it actually provokes my sin nature to sin more in that it condemns me so the log reveals my true standing before God and then the lot reveals the way to shalom shalom is an important word in the Old Testament. Personally, I find a way to shalom through grace and mercy that comes in the size, work, and the law leads me there because there is no other place the law leads me to loving obedience and joyful loyalty and wholehearted devotion to the only one who can restore me.
I will never find shalom through the law but the law will lead me to shalom a personal level, and then collectively the 10 Commandments function as one writer put it, as the cement for society by showing us the path of justice.
The path of fellowship to community the harmony to fulfillment in my relationship with God and others so in order to use the law rightly. We must understand what it reveals and then finally as we closed using the law, property recruitment properly requires that I embrace my relationship to it. So what is my relationship to this law and I would say this through Jesus Christ. I have been redeemed from the condemnation of that law that this law has no hope for me with regard to salvation. It can't save me.
I been released from the penalty of the law. Laws no longer my judge in Romans chapter 8 it's no longer my executioner. In Romans chapter 3 and when the most powerful paragraphs in the New Testament about how God delivers and releases you, not just from the condemnation of the law but from its penalty itself and then I have a new relationship to the law. The law the law as a believer has a completely new world is now my guide Thomas Watson appeared in pastor said this, though a Christian is not under the condemning power of the law, yet he is under its commanding power and so the law becomes my God, my guide as as a redeemed person as someone who has been made righteous by Christ. The law has a completely new relationship. To me it shows me how to love God with all of my heart.
It shows me how to love my neighbor as myself and it shows me how to mortify my flesh so that my inner life is in line with God's nature.
The law does not save me.
It doesn't sanctify me but it does satisfy me when it leads me to God. And best of all, I been given a new power to keep this law footing chapter 2 verse 13 reveals the Holy Spirit as that power of God working in me both to will and to do of his good pleasure. No wonder the psalmist said. Oh how I love thy law is my meditation all of the day. No wonder the psalmist prayed open mine eyes that I may behold wondrous things out of your law, and no wonder. The psalmist committed. I shall keep thy law continually for ever and I will walk in liberty, for I seek thy precepts. Oh how we should love God's law is the way to true life for a believer father, thank you for what we have studied this semester. Thank you for the beauty of the law. The goodness of the law, thank youse well for the severity of the law because it is led us to a true assessment of our own sinfulness and that it is guided us and brought us by the hand to your precious son, Jesus Christ, to fulfill the law and delivered us from the law and now gives us to that law that it might guide our steps in the knowledge of who God is and what he is like and will thank you for all of this in Jesus name, amen. You been listening to a sermon preached at Bob Jones University by Dr. Sam Horn. This concludes our study series of the 10 Commandments, and we trust that this is been a blessing in your life. Be sure to listen again tomorrow for more Chapel sermons from Bob Jones University on The Daily Platform