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Romans 10:1-4
ROMANS 10:1-4
"For Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to every one that believeth."   Rom 10:4

A spirit of anti-christ has crept into the church to undermine the authority of Jesus Christ as Lord.  Men of lawlessness do this by twisting the words of Paul regarding the law so that they appear to say that "faith renders the Christian free from obligation to obey The Ten Commandments."  An example of this kind of perversion is their appeal to the text of Romans 10:1-4  in their attempt to prove that the law does not apply to Christians.

However, upon close examination,  the context of the text exposes their deceitfulness.  Immediately, we will see that Paul is talking about unconverted Jews --NOT CHRISTIANS!  So the  ceremonial law (even though it was only a shadow)  is the only possible law they could  have (through ignorance)  been observing for forgiveness of sins.   From the time of their first Passover, the children learned the principle:  "It is the blood that maketh an atonement for the soul."*

In order to understand Romans 10:1-4, we must know the difference between the Ceremonial Law and The Ten Commandments.

The Ten Commandments is the perfect law that is established in our hearts; the  law that defines sin. "...Sin is TRANSGRESSION OF THE LAW."  (1 John 3:4)  The Commandments of God show us that we need to be forgiven and cleansed from the doing of sin.  Those commandments are called "the law of liberty".  They are the standard by which all men will be judged and chosen for eternal life.  Jesus said:   " ...  If thou wilt enter into life, keep the commandments."  Matt 19:17

On the other hand, the ceremonial law was a temporary law that was "ADDED BECAUSE OF TRANSGRESSIONS" until the seed [Christ] should come:

"Wherefore then serveth the law?  It was ADDED BECAUSE OF TRANSGRESSIONS, till the seed should come to whom the promise was made; ...." Gal 3:19

Now, that we can distinguish between the Ten Commandments and the Ceremonial  Law, let us examine Romans 10:1-4.

"Brethren, my heart's desire and prayer to God for Israel  is, that they might be saved."  Rom 10:1

Look!  Paul is referring to people who were called Israel because of their natural birth.  They  were still unconverted Jews who did not have faith in the sacrificial death of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of sins.  That is why  Paul was praying that they might be saved.

"For I bear them record that they have a zeal of God, but not according to knowledge."  Rom 10:2

Paul bears witness that his countrymen observed the ceremonial law with great earnestness;  but they lacked the knowledge that  THE LAW OF ORDINANCES  that regulated the priesthood with its rites and sacrifices was abolished at the cross.  They did not understand  that the sacrifices of the ceremonial law could not take away sin or make anyone perfect. 

The Book of Hebrews tells us this:

"For the law having a shadow of good things to come,  and not the very image of the things, can never with those sacrifices which they offered year by year continually make the comers thereunto perfect. For then would they not have ceased to be offered? because that the worshippers once purged should have had no more conscience of sins. But in those sacrifices there is a remembrance again  made of sins every year.  For it is not possible that the blood of bulls and of goats should take away sins."  Heb 10:1-4

Paul's countrymen were in a state of ignorance about God's plan of justification, through the death, burial and resurrection of Christ. Instead of having faith in Christ as the true sin offering, they were striving for forgiveness and cleansing of sin by observing the many sacrifices and rites of the ceremonial law.

"For they being ignorant of God's righteousness, and going about to establish their own righteousness, have not submitted themselves unto the righteousness of God." Rom 10:3

The goal of the ceremonial law was to bring the descendants of Abraham to Christ for the forgiveness and cleansing of sin.  Under that covenant, every time a sacrifice was made, men of true faith would look forward to the coming of the promised seed who would save them from their sins.

"For Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to every one that believeth."  Rom 10:4

The word "end" refers to the goal of the law - not the cessation of the law. 

*  #5056  END = telos.  (to set out for a definite point or  goal.)  Strong's Greek/Hebrew Dictionary

The goal of the law is to lead us to Christ. For example - Vine's Expository Dictionary of Biblical Words states:

(b) "the final issue or result" of a state or process ... In <Rom. 10:4>, Christ is described as 'the end of the Law unto righteousness to everyone that believeth'; this is best explained by <Gal. 3:23-26>; "

"But before faith came, we were kept under the law, shut up unto the faith which should afterwards be revealed. Wherefore the law was our schoolmaster to bring us unto Christ, that we might be justified by faith.  But after that faith is come, we are no longer  under a schoolmaster. For ye are all the children of God by faith in Christ Jesus." Gal 3:23-26 (KJV)

The Ceremonial Law was abolished at the cross.  The purpose for animal sacrifices ended as Jesus cried:  "It is finished."  The veil of the temple was rent in two from the top to the bottom --and the ministry of the Levitical Priesthood had finished its work.  The promised seed had come!


"That the righteousness of the law might be fulfilled IN US, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit."  Rom 8:4 (KJV)

Heb 10:16-21

“This is the covenant that I will make with them after those days,  saith the Lord, I WILL PUT MY LAWS INTO THEIR HEARTS,  and in their minds will I write them; And their sins and iniquities will I remember no more. Now where remission of these is, there is no more offering for sin. Having therefore, brethren, boldness to enter into the holiest by the blood of Jesus, By a new and living way, which he hath consecrated for us, through the veil, that is to say, his flesh; And having an high priest over the house of God;”

The Ten Commandments are established in our lives by faith through obedience.

 "Do we then make void the law through faith? God forbid: yea, we establish the law."  Rom 3:31 (KJV)

The Ten Commandments are engraved upon the hearts of the people who choose to obey them and have the faith of Jesus.

Donna Kupp

*  "For the life of the flesh is in the blood; and I have given it for you upon the altar to make atonement for your souls; for it is the blood that makes atonement, by reason of the life." Lev 17:11 (RSV)

"Here is the patience of the saints: here are they that keep the commandments of God, and the faith of Jesus."  Rev 14:12 (KJV)



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