Summary: The Law does not save; only Jesus saves through faith.
Law for the Lawless
January 24, 2010 Evening Service
Immanuel Baptist Church, Wagoner, OK
Message Point: The Law does not save; only Jesus saves through faith.
Focus Passage: I Timothy 1:8-11
Supplemental Passage: I would not have come to know sin except through the Law; for I would not have known about coveting if the Law had not said, "YOU SHALL NOT COVET." But sin, taking opportunity through the commandment, produced in me coveting of every kind; for apart from the Law sin is dead. (Romans 7:7-8)
Introduction: A husband and wife didn't really love each other. The man was very demanding, so much so that he prepared a list of rules and regulations for his wife to follow. He insisted that she read them over every day and obey them to the letter. Among other things, his "do's and don'ts" indicated such details as what time she had to get up in the morning, when his breakfast should be served, and how the housework should be done. After several long years, the husband died.
As time passed, the woman fell in love with another man, one who dearly loved her. Soon they were married. This husband did everything he could to make his new wife happy, continually showering her with tokens of his appreciation. One day as when was cleaning house, she found tucked away in a drawer the list of commands her first husband had drawn up for her. As she looked it over, it dawned on her that even though her present husband hadn't given her any kind of list, she was doing everything her first husband's list required anyway. She realized she was so devoted to this man that her deepest desire was to please him out of love, not obligation.
The law is the light that reveals how dirty the room is, not the broom that sweeps it clean.
Misc. civil laws:
In Lexington, Ky., there is an ordinance forbidding anyone to carry an ice-cream cone in his pocket.
In Waterloo, Nebr., barbers are forbidden to eat onions between seven a.m. and seven p.m.
In the Commonwealth of Massachusetts it is against the law to eat peanuts in church or to use tomatoes in making clam chowder.
In Kansas an old law states that you cannot eat snakes on Sunday or rattlesnake meat in public.
In Los Angeles you cannot bathe two babies in the same tub at the same time.
In Zion, Ill., it is illegal for anyone to give lighted cigars to dogs, cats and other domesticated animals kept as pets.
In Gary, Ind., persons are prohibited from attending a movie house or other theater and from riding a public streetcar within four hours of eating garlic.
In Hartford, Conn., you aren't allowed to cross a street while walking on your hands.
In Baltimore, its illegal to take a lion to the movies.
In Oklahoma you cannot take a bite of another person's hamburger.
In Green, N.Y., you cannot eat peanuts and walk backwards on the sidewalks while a concert is on.
In Connecticut pickles which, when dropped 12 inches, collapse in their own juice are illegal. They must remain whole and even bounce.
In Corvallis, Oreg., young ladies are not allowed to drink coffee after six o'clock in the evening.
In Lehigh Nebr. it is against the law to sell doughnut holes.
I. The Law is useful
a. Rom 7:7-8
b. Evangelist Fred Brown used three images to describe the purpose of the law. First he likened it to a dentist's little mirror, which he sticks into the patient's mouth. With the mirror he can detect any cavities. But he doesn't drill with it or use it to pull teeth. It can show him the decayed area or other abnormality, but it can't provide the solution. Brown then drew another analogy. He said that the law is also like a flashlight. If suddenly at night the lights go out, you use it to guide you down the darkened basement stairs to the electrical box. When you point it toward the fuses, it helps you see the one that is burned out. But after you've removed the bad fuse, you don't try to insert the flashlight in its place. You put in a new fuse to restore the electricity. In his third image, Brown likened the law to a plumbline. When a builder wants to check his work, he uses a weighted string to see if it's true to the vertical. But if he finds that he has made a mistake, he doesn't use the plumbline to correct it. He gets out his hammer and saw. The law points out the problem of sin; it doesn't provide a solution.
II. The Law is for lawbreakers
a. The the law about robbing banks really apply to you?
b. What about the speed limit?
III. We have something better
a. Jesus came and fulfilled the law
b. we follow the law out of love, not compulsion