What was Abolished by Christ?
Did our Saviour abolish anything on the cross?
"Having abolished in His flesh the enmity, even the law of commandments contained in ordinances." Eph. 2:15.
What did He Himself say about the law?
"Think not that I am come to destroy the law or the prophets; I am not come to destroy, but to fulfill." Matt. 5:17.
How long did He say the law would endure?
"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." Matt. 5:18 (Luke 16:17).
NOTE: It is evident, from these texts, that the abolished law was not the law of ten commandments.
What did Paul say of the law of God?
"Wherefore the law is holy, and the commandment holy, and just, and good." Rom. 7:12.
How did he regard it?
"For I delight in the law of God after the inward man." Rom. 7:22.
What does one show by keeping the commandments?
"For this is the love of God, that we keep His commandments; and His commandments are not grievous." John 5:3.
NOTE: A law that is holy, just, and good, and not grievous, cannot be an "enmity," as was that which Christ abolished.
Does sin still exist?
"If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us." 1 John 1:8.
Could there be sin now, if Christ abolished the law?
"For until the law sin was in the world; but sin is not imputed when there is no law." Rom. 5:13.
What was made possible by abolishing the law of commandments contained in ordinances?
"That at that time ye were without Christ, being aliens from the commonwealth of Israel, and strangers from the covenants of promise, having no hope, and without God in the world; but now in Christ Jesus ye who sometimes were far off are made nigh by the blood of Christ. For He is our peace, who hath made both one, and hath broken down the middle wall of partition between us." Eph. 2:12-14.
NOTE: "He broke down the middle wall of partition, the ceremonial law, that made the great feud, and was the badge of the Jews' peculiarity, -- called the partition-wall by way of allusion to the partition in the temple, which separated the court of the Gentiles from that into which the Jews only, had liberty to enter. Thus He abolished in His flesh the enmity." --Matthew Henry.
"Breaking down that partition-wall, which had so long separated the Jews from the Gentiles; namely, the ceremonial law." --Thomas Scott.
What was the chief thing that separated the Jews and the Gentiles?
"And when Peter was come up to Jerusalem, they that were of the circumcision contended with him, saying, Thou wentest in to men uncircumcised, and didst eat with them." Acts 11:2, 3.
Was circumcision done away in Christ?
"For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision availeth any thing, nor uncircumcision, but a new creature." Gal. 6:15.
After circumcision and the ordinances connected with it lost their force, what still remained of the utmost importance?
"Circumcision is nothing, and uncircumcision is nothing, but the keeping of the commandments of God." 1 Cor. 7:19.
NOTE: There are several distinct objects to which the term law is applied.
(1) The ten commandments are by themselves called a law, and are often referred to by that term in the Holy Scriptures. (Ex. 24:12).
(2) The ceremonial law of the Jews was given through Moses, and was abolished at the cross (Deut. 31:26).
(3) The five historical books of Moses, which in the classification of the Scriptures were called "the law," in contrast with the prophetical and poetical books; as in the expression, "which were written in the law of Moses, and in the prophets, and in the Psalms, concerning Me" (Luke 24:44).
None need be confused concerning these laws when considering Paul's statements as to what was done away, and what remains (Rom. 3:31; Col. 2:14). It was not the five historical books of Moses which were nailed to the cross. Conventionally, the term "the law" may still be applied to those books to distinguish them from other portions of the Scriptures. But the types, shadows, and ceremonies of the Jewish system, only, were done away; while the moral law still remains.