Application for Today
An understanding of Paul’s view of the law is critical to believers’ ability to capture the true nature of the gospel of Christ. Like the believers in first-century Israel, believers today are not bound by any law, but are set free by the grace of God. Paul’s view of the law as the standard of righteousness helps modern believers recognize their depravity before a holy God, while still understanding the role of the law in the life of the Christian. Understanding that Christ is the end of the law and has ushered in a new covenant demonstrates to modern believers how God has made a way to bridge the gap between sinners and Himself. Knowing that justification comes through faith in Christ alone illustrates how magnificent God’s grace is toward a sinful world. These truths are essential to realizing what Christ has done and how His action has enabled freedom from sin.
Although believers are no longer under the law, Paul made it clear that sin must not abound in their lives. “Those who are no longer under the law are led by the Spirit which produces its fruit in their lives ([Rom.] 5:22) so that their faith expresses itself in love (5:6). Consequently, even though believers are no longer under the law, they fulfill the law through the love commandment (5:14).” Believers are to take their freedom from the law and exercise it by living in the Spirit. “It was for freedom that Christ set us free; therefore keep standing firm and do not be subject again to a yoke of slavery” (Gal. 5:1).