BIBLICAL FULFILLMENT
Biblical Rules for Christians
I am Jessie Mills, Ph.D.
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BIBLICAL RULES FOR CHRISTIANS

1 Cor. 9:21
“Being not without law to God, but under the law to Christ.”

            In this expression, The Apostle Paul describes the exact condition of a true believer in the Lord Jesus Christ. He introduces it as a parenthesis, in the midst of a discourse upon the freedom, which he claimed in his ministry of the Gospel. Paul describes his cheerful conformity to the rules and laws of the new Covenant, and speaks about the various habits and prejudices of those to whom he ministered, that he might be made the instrument of winning them to Christ. I become all things, to all people, in order that I might save some. Though he was wholly free from the authority of men, yet he willingly submitted himself to their customs and desires, that he might gain the more. But he would not allow this varying compliance with the feelings of others in things indifferent, or construed into a neglect on his part of the unvarying authority and law of God, as if he were without any abiding rule in Christianity.

            He felt that he was entirely free from all those appointments and precepts which had been given to his nation of Israel, which had been fulfilled, or soon would be, soon the period of restoration would be upon them, and those who would not heed the words of that prophet Jesus would utterly be destroyed, Acts 3: 19-25.

            But to permanent and restored precepts of holiness, and righteousness, which God proclaimed in connection with these, he could not be indifferent. They were written in his heart with a divine power. They governed his conduct with an unceasing constraint. He came face to face with the Apostle Peter in regards to Peter’s prejudices, later in the Acts chapter 10, God gives Peter a lesson on prejudice. In 2 Cor. 11:23-31, the Apostle Paul introduces the Corinthians to rules and regulations, which he has suffered as a Christian. He was the perfect example of a minister of Christ; who better could say, “Be ye imitators of me, just as I also am of Christ.”

            His joyful acceptance of the hopes and promises of the Gospel had confirmed and increased the power of these precepts over his heart. He was “ not without law to God,” because he was “ under the law of Christ.” The Saviour whom he served, and in whom he had his whole relation to God, had renewed for him the same perfect standard of obedience, that is afforded every man, who comes to Christ. This had added new and more powerful motives to lead him to a greater love for Christ.

            Paul, describes the condition of every believer; entire and everlasting freedom from the law of Moses as a dispensation of condemnation and death, ---but everlasting and delightful subjection to the law, as a rule of conformity to Jesus Christ, leading to entire love to God, and universal love to men for His sake. The great salvation of the Lord Jesus Christ, though it is founded upon a perfect satisfaction of the old law in all its penalties and precepts, as a righteousness for man. Man adopts all the holy commandments of Christ as the rule of life and conduct, for those who have accepted this righteousness, and have been made partakers of this salvation freely offered. As Jesus said, “but seek first His Kingdom and His Righteousness.”

            This is the condition of every justified man. He has been delivered from the bondage of the law. He is made free from its denunciations. It has no penalties to demand of him, and no judgments to inflict upon him, he is in Christ. The law has no dominion over him. He is not under the law. He is under the rules and regulations of the restored Spiritual Covenant, Which was ratified by Christ, when He took His Bride, the Assembly of the called out, Rev. 19:7. When the law and the prophets was fulfilled within the time frame of the generation which Christ lived, Matt. 24: 34, Luke 21:32. The new convert is in possession of a divine righteousness through the Grace of God, which meets all its claims and sets him free from the power of the law forever, he has been placed under a new dispensation, which furnishes new obligations to a holy obedience to Christ. He is under the law to Christ, who has bought him, not with silver and gold, but the precious blood of Christ. He no longer belongs to self; he no longer pleases self, but Christ.

            The motives to obedience are changed, the influence and effects of this obedience has changed, but the rule and regulations of holiness remains the same, and in the same conformity to it he glorifies God in his body and his spirit. He must remain an imitator of Paul and that of Christ. Paul was the example to all Christians through out eternity. The man who has truly embraced the Gospel of Christ, has cast out all his dependence upon his own opinions of what the Gospel rules and regulations are; and rests his whole hope of justification before God, and upon the Divine appointed Saviour. He cannot add an iota of merit to that great offering, which has been once for all made for his soul, and which has perfected his title as a Christian. The Inheritance has been given him by promise, conditional upon his continued obedience, and through the grace of God; he labors and strives and obeys, from a heart of love and gratitude to Him who has bestowed it, and that he may become prepared and capable for the enjoyment of that glory, for which he is apprehended of Jesus Christ. But as his rule of character, as the governing standard of his life, the law has no dominion over him as long as he lives. By its precepts he is led to bring forth fruits of his labor for Christ. He is to bring forth holiness to God. He labors to become increasingly holy in the spirit and character of his mind, that he may honor Him who hath chosen him to be His servant. To this view of the Divine law of Christ, I call your attention to these facts. “ The perfect rule of life to every believer in the Lord Jesus Christ;” Christ governing him as the declaration of his Saviour, and His will; and made by the renewing of the Holy Spirit, the standard of his choice, and the path in which he delights to walk.

            We have renounced the one in order to gain the other. We are taught to “ count all things loss, that we may win Christ, and be found in Him, not having our own righteousness which is the law, but that which is through the faith of Christ, the righteousness of God by faith.” We are accepted, when with our hearts we believe in Him, and believe that His Word is truth. But being accepted, and having “ obtained access through Him, into this grace wherein we stand, rejoicing in hope of the glory of God,” the precepts of God’s holy law becomes the rule of our life; we are made ready and able to say, “ O how I love thy law; it is my meditation all the day.”

            As I continue to refer to God’s law, keep in mind that I refer to His eternal moral law, not the law of ordinances and sacrifices.

            Holiness is conformity to the image of God, to which we were created. And though man can never have this perfect righteousness in himself, the believer increasingly attains this holiness, this conformity to the perfect image after which he is renewed by the Holy Spirit. The one principle, which fulfills this law, and marks this divine image, is love. “ Love is of God, and every one that loves is born of God, and knows God; he that loves not, knows not God, for God is love.” The more we love, the more we are conformed to His image, and the more we fully honor and obey Him. “ Here by this shall all men know that you are my disciples.’ Says the Lord Jesus, John 13:35.  This holy requirement of love, entire and unlimited love, was laid upon man by his Creator, as it was laid upon every other intelligent creature that He formed. No change in man’s circumstances or condition could ever alter the holy and perfect standard, which God, Himself had set up before Him. Whatever station we might occupy in the scale of intelligent beings, it must be everywhere equally our duty to maintain. In short, Christians must maintain their salvation. See my lesson on maintaining Christianity.

            The Apostle, through the guidance of the Holy Spirit left many perfect examples for Christians, and the Church to follow, in following them we maintain Christianity. Notice 1 Cor. 4:6, “Now these things, brethren, I have figuratively applied to my self and Apollos for your sakes, that in us you might learn not to exceed the written Word,” “ Study to show thyself approved by God a workman that needs not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the Words of truth,” And then, 1 Cor. 5:9-13, Any so called brother who is immoral, not to even eat with such a one.

            These are but a few of the examples that Paul gives as a rule of Life. Well Then! And “so what” is answers you will hear on many occasions. But the Christian must remember that once he has become a child of the king, he is under the Divine law of Christ and God, it is the perfect and unalterable standard to which his character is to become conformed. In itself it is perfectly excellent, precious and holy. It is a description and transcript of the character and perfection of the Creator Himself. Conformity to its precepts is an attainment of the pure and holy image of God. Righteousness is an entire fulfillment of these precepts. Holiness is conformity to the image of God in which they are present within His body.

            Our conformity to this Divine law was one great object of our redemption by the Lord Jesus Christ. In all that he did and suffered for his people, he purposed their restoration to holiness, in order to restore holiness, there had to be the restoration of the Spiritual Covenant which would replace the Covenant of Heb. 8:13, to have the restoration of the Spiritual Covenant which once was offered to our first parents in the garden, we must have prophecy which would show that the Scepter was removed from Judah by Christ Gen. 49:10, Isa. 2:1-3, Isa. 51:1 ff. Isa. 52:1 ff. Isa. 53:1 ff. And further we must have evidence that Christ took this restored people as His Bride, Rev. 19:7, Rev. 21:1-6. Christ did not labor merely to rescue them from death as a punishment; but to deliver them from the bondage, and power of Satan, to redeem them, Heb. 2:14-15, for this He was called Jesus, “Because he should save His people from their sins.” For this, God raised up a mighty salvation, and might reconcile them both in one body to God through the cross, Eph. 2:12-16, In this way we being delivered from fear of our enemies, might both serve Him without fear, in holiness and righteousness before Him all the days of our life. To have delivered a rebellious family, merely from the ruin, which they deserved, would have been a partial object; the great design was to bring back these rebels, to a state of obedience and love; To take away the spirit of hostility which had governed them; to restore them to the one great family of God; to renew the peace between the peoples, and harmony of a disordered universe; to Stop the breach which the waters of contention had made; and to bring into one, all conflicting feelings and purposes, in Christ Jesus.

            Such was the great purpose, for which the Redeemer gave Himself for us, that He might redeem us from all iniquity, and purify unto Himself a peculiar people zealous of good works. He has restored redeemed man to a voluntary submission to that holy government of God, which is the source of universal peace. He has received this government, as the ruler of redeemed men; and died, and risen, and received, that He might be Lord both of the dead and of the living.

             Jesus cannot rule in mercy over a world that rejects Him, over them He must rule with a rod of iron and dash them in pieces like a potters vessel. But He has with His own blood restored the Church that Adam and Eve rejected, the Spiritual system, The Heavenly Jerusalem, Zion.

            Christ rejoices over each ransomed sinner, who He brings in triumph to the glories of a heavenly home, renewed after the perfect image of God. He presents each one to the Father, as the accomplishment of His great design in making His soul an offering for sin, and consenting to be numbered with transgressors. As he sees the spotless character of holiness, impressed upon glorified saints, and increasingly manifest in every child of God on earth. Would that all who are on the books of the Church could be among those we have talked about in the above dissertation.

            And could hear Jesus call out our name, and walk around Heaven with Him, what a glorious thought. It can be, it is possible; but we who are here must recognize, but fast, for tomorrow may never come, therefore, to buffet our bodies, as did the Apostle, and make necessary changes in our life, vow to accept God’s Word above that of man. You must know God does not bring us together to entertain us, rather to have fellowship with us. How important is fellowship to you? Paul said, “ not to forsake the assembly, as the manner of some is.” So happens this is another rule of Christianity.

            Our obedience to the law, and its rules and regulations.

            Its precepts, is the purpose for which we are personally delivered from its condemnation. The Son of God has purchased us by the offering of Himself for us. He has freely bestowed upon us the liberty of the Gospel, so that we are no longer in bondage under condemnation, but are in freedom under grace, if we choose to be. For we have not been made free by grace, that we may continue in sin, but that we may walk before Him in newness of life. God has sent His own Son for us in the likeness of sinful flesh, that righteousness of the law might be fulfilled in us, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit. But woe unto me! As the Apostle said, for we who remain under the power of the law, and in bondage of the law, we can never obey its holy command- ments. It can never offer us any assistance or strength; it cannot make us acceptable or holy in the sight of God. It acts as a hard task master Rom. 2:8-9.  But when we have embraced the liberty and life, which the Gospel offers, all the help we need is freely given, ask in faith and it shall be given, knock and it shall be opened to you. Christianity is freely given as the grace of God, how can any soul refuse such free gift? Obedience to the Gospel laws insures eternal life, opposed to, Eternity in punishment because of rebellion while on earth. Read Jude 6, and 2 Pet. 2:4, and see what God done to the angels in Heaven who rebelled against His word. If He done this to His created angels, think what He would do to me, and you!

            There is a race to be run, and a contest to be maintained; but it is in vain to command the culprit who is in his jail cell, behind locked steel doors, bound hand and foot, either to run, or fight. When his chains is removed, and the doors unlocked, he may successfully, be urged to arise and strive for the prize.

            It is not impossible to put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand firm against all evil, Gird your loins with the truth, and take the helmet of salvation, which is the Word of God. Do you not know that those who run in a race all run, but only one receives the prize? Run in such way that you may win, 1 Cor. 9:24.

            If Christ freely gives you salvation, the least we in turn can do for Him is to study, gain knowledge, and wisdom. The more we know about Christ and what He has done for mankind, certainly encourages us to obtain more knowledge, for it was from the lack of knowledge that Israel went into captivity, Isa. 5:13.

            We must be able to understand that any government, must have rules and regulations, the government of God, Christ, and the Holy Spirit, is the largest, and most important government that shall ever be created, and so, the rules of the Gospel is binding upon each person who comes under the Covenant of Christ, we avoid trouble, heartache, sorrow, grief, and agony by obeying the rules of the Gospel.


 

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© Copyright 2015 by Jessie Mills. All Rights Reserved by the author, Jessie E. Mills, Jr. No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, or transmitted in any form by any means, electronic, mechanical, photocopy, recording, or otherwise, without the prior express written permission of the publisher, except for brief quotations in critical reviews or other publications. Such quotations must be used with proper reference to their context and give appropriate credit to their authorship.