“The Ten Commandments can’t save you, you know! After all, we’re saved by GRACE, not the law!”
“Yes, I know it’s a sin to work on Saturday, but let’s face it, the Ten Commandments aren’t what saves you!”
Evaluate those statements. How would you respond to those? Would you agree? Would you say, as I’ve often done “Well, no, they can’t… but you can’t be saved without them!”
In either case, you’d be wrong! I was. The Ten Commandments absolutely CAN save you, and NOTHING ELSE IN THE UNIVERSE CAN!
Now, allow me to prove this drastic, radical departure from modern protestant thinking and explain WHY you need a sacrifice, WHY you need grace, and WHY the entire world is deceived about this CRUCIAL TRUTH!
Our first stop on this study will be the words of Christ Himself. How did He feel about this issue? When Christ was asked “How do I get saved?”, what did He say? Did he say “Believe on me, and NEVER forget; the ten commandments can’t save you?”
Matthew 19:16 And, behold, one came and said unto him, Good Master, what good thing shall I do, that I may have eternal life? And he said unto him, Why callest thou me good? there is none good but one, that is, God: but if thou wilt enter into life, KEEP THE COMMANDMENTS.
This man wanted SAVED! He wanted ETERNAL LIFE, to be with Christ forever!
But Christ gave Him terrible advice! He said to be saved, keep the commandments! But we all know that’s simply not true, don’t we? We know that you are saved by GRACE, and not by that musty old law!
If only Christ had known that, He could have given this man the CORRECT answer… Or wait a minute! Maybe He did? Maybe it is YOU and not HIM who have been in error all your life! Let’s pursue that thought…
Ezekiel 20:11 And I gave them my statutes, and shewed them my judgments, which if a man do, he shall even live in them.
God says that if a man KEEPS the Ten Commandments, he will LIVE in them, or BY them, or BECAUSE of them! That’s what He said! God said if you DO them, you will LIVE!
But of course God also said, you must BELIEVE, and have FAITH in Him to be saved, right?
Just HOW do you believe on Him? How do you have faith in Him? If you are familiar with our other articles, such as “The simple TRUTH about Faith”, “Why doesn’t God answer your prayers?”, then you know you can only have FAITH and BELIEVE on Him… BY KEEPING THE COMMANDMENTS!!
It is by KEEPING the commandments, and KNOWING you are keeping the commandments, you have FAITH! Faith, then, comes by the ten commandments!
But don’t you have to love your brother, and God, to be saved? Definitely! And where does that love come from?
Romans 13:9 For this, Thou shalt not commit adultery, Thou shalt not kill, Thou shalt not steal, Thou shalt not bear false witness, Thou shalt not covet; and if there be any other commandment, it is briefly comprehended in this saying, namely, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. Love worketh no ill to his neighbour: therefore love is the fulfilling of the law.
God says that LOVE IS the keeping of the commandments! So even if you are saved by love, you are STILL saved by the LAW OF GOD!!
1 Timothy 1:5 Now the END OF THE COMMANDMENT is charity [LOVE] out of a pure heart, and of a good conscience, and of faith unfeigned:
The END of the commandment – the PRODUCT, the natural RESULT of the commandment is LOVE! And a good CONSCIENCE, and FAITH UNFEIGNED! These all come directly FROM OBEYING THE TEN COMMANDMENTS! They could not EXIST WITHOUT IT!
Are you ready yet to admit that it most certainly IS the law that saves you?? If not, there is more!
We know that it says BY GRACE are you saved through faith! And yet we know that that Grace which saves you COMES BY FAITH! (Ephesians 2:8), and that FAITH comes by OBEDIENCE TO THE LAW!!
And now at last we reach the heart of the matter! WHAT SAVED CHRIST?? Was it Grace? Faith? Love? Yes! All of those! And where does the BIBLE SAY THEY CAME FROM??
Isaiah 59:16 And he saw that there was no man, and wondered that there was no intercessor: therefore HIS ARM BROUGHT SALVATION UNTO HIM; and HIS RIGHTEOUSNESS, IT sustained him!
He saved Himself by righteousness! The LAW, and HIS OBEDIENCE TO IT, saved HIM!
1 John 2:3 And hereby we do know that we know him, if we keep his commandments. He that saith, I know him, and keepeth not his commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him. But whoso keepeth his word, in him verily is the love of God perfected: hereby know we that we are in him. He that saith he abideth in him ought himself also so to walk, even as he walked.
God says you should walk as HE walked! And when you walk as HE walked, you will be walking RIGHTEOUSLY, which means you won’t break the law! Which means you will be showing LOVE! And knowing that will bring FAITH, and that will bring GRACE, and that will bring salvation!
But in spite of all that, you deserve an explanation. You deserve to know WHAT PAUL MEANT when he said…
Galatians 3:10-13 For as many as are of the works of the law are under the curse: for it is written, Cursed is every one that continueth not in all things which are written in the book of the law to do them. But that no man is justified by the law in the sight of God, it is evident: for, The just shall live by faith. And the law is not of faith: but, The man that doeth them shall live in them. Christ hath redeemed us from the curse of the law, being made a curse for us: for it is written, Cursed is every one that hangeth on a tree:
Paul, in his confusing way, was saying that when once you had sinned, you were under a curse, and could not be saved by the law anymore! The reason for that is very simple; the law is clear; if you KEEP the law, you will LIVE. But when you break the law, you must die.
And so, when you broke the law, it required special intervention by Christ’s death, bearing your curse on a tree, for you to be given another chance. A new lease on life, so to speak.
But ONCE THAT HAPPENED, you are once again obligated to keep the Ten Commandments, just as before! As Paul himself quotes, If you DO them, you will LIVE! And if you DO THEM, you will have FAITH! The JUST shall live by faith! And how is a man just, if not BY PROPERLY KEEPING AND ADMINISTERING THE LAW! And the END of that law is FAITH, and LOVE, and a good conscience, and that FAITH brings you GRACE!
Romans 5:21 That as sin hath reigned unto death, even so might Grace Reign through RIGHTEOUSNESS unto eternal life BY Jesus Christ our Lord.
Through perfect obedience to the Ten Commandments, Christ Saved Himself and then His sacrifice paid for your sins. His obedience to the Law saved Him, and IF YOU had ever actually KEPT the law, it could have saved YOU as well! But YOU messed it up! You didn’t hold up YOUR END of the bargain! You sinned!
This didn’t mean the LAW was wrong, or evil; it meant YOU were wrong, and evil.
Hebrews 8:8 For finding fault with THEM [This was a fault with the PEOPLE, not the LAW], he saith, Behold, the days come, saith the Lord, when I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel and with the house of Judah:…
If you would have embraced the law from the beginning, as Christ did, and had never sinned, then the Law would have saved you. And since you DIDN’T keep the law, and didn’t bear up your end of the bargain, it could no longer save you.
BUT once Christ’s death paid the penalty for your sin, your repented-of sins are gone, and you are in effect, given a new start. A new chance to try to keep the law – and this time, to do it right.
And it is STILL the Ten Commandments that will save you! THAT never changed! But God has now given you the holy Spirit to explain the law to you. To teach you right from wrong. That is the main difference with the new covenant.
Hebrews 8:9 Not according to the covenant that I made with their fathers in the day when I took them by the hand to lead them out of the land of Egypt; because THEY continued not in my covenant, and I regarded them not, saith the Lord. For THIS is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, saith the Lord; I WILL PUT MY LAWS INTO THEIR MIND, and write them in their hearts: and I will be to them a God, and they shall be to me a people: And they shall not teach every man his neighbour, and every man his brother, saying, Know the Lord: for all shall know me, from the least to the greatest.
He has put HIS LAWS, HIS TEN COMMANDMENTS in your MIND, if you have the spirit of God! They are in your mind so that your OBEDIENCE to them can SAVE YOU, just as CHRIST’S OBEDIENCE to them saved HIM!
The new covenant, that of faith, is NOTHING BUT KEEPING THE LAW PERFECTLY, AS IT WAS INTENDED! But it is STILL NOTHING MORE THAN A SINCERE APPLICATION OF THE MUSTY OLD TEN COMMANDMENTS!!
And so YES! A thousand times, YES! The ten commandments CAN save you, and they are THE ONLY THING THAT CAN!!