Chapter # 5 Paragraph # 2 Study # 10
July 4, 2006
Lincolnton, N.C.

<230> Thesis: Every divine demand for righteous behavior from fallen man can be taken in one of two ways: either the commands can be taken as expressions of what God requires of man in order for him to live; or the commands can be taken as a two-fold question -- "Do you see what you are?" "Would you like to be something different?" Introduction: In our studies of Romans 5:12-21 we have seen Paul argue that we are what we are by virtue of whence we have come. If we have come from Adam, we are sinners by nature. If we have come from Christ, we are saints by nature. If we are sinners by nature, all that we can hope to produce is sin. If we are saints by nature, all we can expect to produce is righteousness. It would seem, therefore, that the only really necessary issue would be for God to alter our nature -- and, in one sense, that is all that is necessary. However, as with all others things, the alteration of our nature has a "required process" that is very much involved in the transformation of the grub into the butterfly. Thus, having presented the "bottom line" as the identity issue [whether we are of Adam or of Christ], Paul takes one further step and addresses the divine purpose for the addition/inclusion of the Law. The question before us this evening is this: Why did God insert the Law into the process? The Law was given more than 1300 years before Christ came. By anyone's standard of measure, that is a long time. The question, therefore, does really exist: what was God seeking to do by putting the seed of Abraham under a covenant relationship to Himself?