The Christian and God’s Law

Product Details I appreciate Thomas Watson’s explanation of the relationship between the Christian and God’s moral law.  This might be considered a commentary on the Westminster Larger Catechism Q/A 97 (“What special use is there of the moral law to the regenerate?”).  Note: I’ve slightly edited the following quote for length.

“In some sense [the moral law] is abolished to believers: 1) With respect to justification.  They are not justified by their obedience to the moral law.  Believers are to make great use of the moral law, but they must trust only Christ’s righteousness for salvation.  2) With respect of its curses.  Believers are freed from the law’s curse and condemnatory power because of what Christ has done on the cross (Gal. 3.13).

“…But though the moral law be thus far abolished, it remains as a perpetual rule to believers.  Though it be not their Savior, it is their guide.  Though it be not ‘foedus,’ a covenant of life, yet it is a ‘norma,’ a rule of life.  Though a Christian is not under the condemning power of the law, yet he is under its commanding power.  To love God, to reverence and obey him, is a law which always binds and will bind in heaven.”

“This I urge against the Antinomians, who say the moral law is abrogated to believers; which, as it contradicts Scripture, so it is a key to open the door to all licentiousness.  They who will not have the law to rule them shall never have the gospel to save them” (p. 44).

Thomas Watson, The Ten Commandments, p. 44.

rev shane lems

5 thoughts on “The Christian and God’s Law”

    1. Though I know Matt a little, I don’t read his blog; I honestly don’t read any blogs (aside from a few baseball commentaries now and then!).

      Seeing Matt’s title/link you gave reminded me of the 4th century Christian writing, “Constitutions of the Holy Apostles” which says “have before thine eyes the fear of God, and always remember the ten commandments of God….” However, having read large portions of the Ante-Nicene Fathers, I do think it is safe to say they didn’t emphasize the 10Cs like the Reformers did. That’s really all I can say.

      shane

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