Suffering for the Law and the Gospel

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That is why the Old Testament looks forward!

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Isaiah 53 is among the literary treasures of humanity, and its message of the suffering servant of God is incredibly touching. On His back will be laid the sin and guilt of the transgressors and He will pour out His life in the one and only sacrifice that finally finishes it all. It might seem that the apostle Paul is disparaging the law when he contrasts it with the good news of the Gospel.

Suffering for the Law and the Gospel von Thomas Watson (Paperback) – Lulu DE

But he is quick to deny this! We would not even know the difference between good and evil, he says, without the law telling us what to do and what not to do.

The law tells us the kind of life that our love for God and our neighbor would require. Obviously all those laws about sacrifices are finished in the one and complete sacrifice of Christ.

Did Jesus preach the Law or the Gospel?

Nor can the keeping of any set of laws give us eternal life. In fact, we have a great motive for obedience to God. That motive stems from the fact that every believer is a new person in Christ.

The timeless law of God is written in our hearts now and obedience is our joyful adventure. Disobedience to God is our rotten failure.

Martin Luther on the Distinction between Law and Gospel

This style of conduct, this law of our new life, we still find in the pages of the Bible. But our High Priest offered himself to God as one sacrifice for sins, good for all time. I will put my laws in their hearts so they will understand them, and I will write them on their minds so they will obey them. How does knowing that Jesus also suffered and understands your suffering help you persevere in faith? Christ suffered and died as a substitute sacrifice for sin. All sin deserves the death penalty.

24 Bible Verses about Suffering

Under the old covenant, God allowed repentant sinners to offer an animal without defect that would receive the death penalty in their place. He, the righteous one who never sinned, received the death penalty for sin that the law requires for the unrighteous.

The Law

While the sacrificial system required daily sacrifices, because Jesus was sinless His sacrifice was sufficient to atone for sin once and for all. Do you understand that you deserve the death penalty for each and every sin you commit? On what or whom are you placing hope for forgiveness?

Christ suffered and died to bring us to God. While the old covenant allowed the people to approach God through the mediation of the high priest, Jesus is the high priest of a new and better covenant who gains access for us into the presence of God through His sacrificial death Hebrews Through Christ, we now have access into the very presence of God. Have you repented of your sins and trusted in Christ alone for salvation? No one can come to the Father except through Jesus. Christ was raised from the dead victorious over evil, sin and death.

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The unbelieving world will seek to make it increasingly more difficult for us Christians to live out our faith. But no matter what suffering we may face we remember that Jesus also suffered and died, though He did no wrong. But death was not the last word, for He was also raised from the dead.

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  • Christians have this hope — that if we face suffering and death, we too will be raised as Jesus was. Let us take hope in this good news and live faithful lives, not fearing suffering but rejoicing that our reward in heaven is great. Only then can we bless those who curse us.