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Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Dead to the “Letter” and Alive to the “Living Towrah!”

By Maria Merola

Copyright Double Portion Inheritance December 2009

Back in 2009, I wrote this article in response to those in the Christian Church who have been misinformed about the Towrah (five books of Moses) in the life of the born-again believer. There seems to be some misunderstanding as to the difference between “Spirit of the Law” versus the “dead letter” of the Law (Towrah).

One Christian man in particular wrote to me about this, and he contradicted his own words and the word of our Creator. At first glance, what he says sounds biblical, but then he makes one huge error. Here is what he wrote:

“…Jesus redeemed us from the curse of the Law ... the inability of man to keep the Law. To break a fraction of it makes you a law breaker, a sinner. No man could keep the Law, only Jesus of Nazareth. He died the perfect Lamb of God without spot or blemish.”

Maria’s Commentary: Okay, so far what this man said is true about Messiah redeeming us from the “curse of the inability to keep the law.” He also stated that no man can keep the Mosaic Law (Torah). But this is not really true. It is only true when people are NOT walking in the Spirit but in the flesh. Yes, it is true that no man can keep the Law (Towrah) when he is “in the flesh.”

In Romans 8:4, Shaul (Paul) speaking by the Holy Spirit declares that when we are walking by the Holy Spirit’s power, we “fulfill the righteousness of the Law.” 
Aha! So it is possible for us to fulfill the Law (Towrah) just as Messiah did! He made it possible for us through the power of the Holy Spirit! 

Okay, so read on and you will see that what this man says is only true in part, but then he makes the mistake of assuming that if we are unable to keep the Law 100% of the time when we are in the flesh, that we are not expected to keep the Law (Towrah) at all! What he does not understand is that if we are dead to the flesh and the old sinful nature, then our inability to keep the Law (Towrah) is also dead, and therefore the ability to obey Towrah is now alive in us!

Christian Mans Comment: Today we walk by faith, dead to sin, dead to the Law, being baptized into Christ (Romans 6) to become new creations (2nd Corinthians 5:17). We are born again of the Holy Spirit who now lives in us to lead us into all truth (1st John 2:27, John 14-16)...

...Do not allow anyone to enslave you to the works of the Law (Galatians 3:1-4) by trying to keep parts of the Mosiac Law. The Book of Hebrews warns us about returning to Judaism and the Law....Jesus is NOT the Torah. He is the living WORD of God. He ever lives and speaks. The Torah, Pentateuch, 5 books of Moses are an important part of Scripture but God has given us the Bible, the complete revelation. The Torah is only a part, not the whole.

Maria Merola’s Response Below:

The very term “works of the law” implies the dead letter of the law without the life of the Holy Spirit in us. There was an Essene Gnostic Cult in Paul’s day who were trying to enforce ritualistic works of keeping the law without a life of faith and intimate fellowship with the Heavenly Father, and this is precisely what the Apostle Paul was addressing in Galatians. See the link below about where the term “Works of the Law” came from: 

In one sentence this man above calls Towrah (five books of Moses) “the word of Yah.” But then he says that Yahuwshuwa (Jesus) is NOT the Living Towrah. So this begs the question: “If Yahuwshuwa (Jesus) is the WORD BECAME FLESH and he is the LIVING WORD OF ELOHIYM (God), and this man acknowledges that the Towrah is indeed the word of Elohiym, how is it that Yahuwshuwa is the Living Word of Elohiym, and yet he is not the Living Towrah?”

Do you see that this is a contradiction in terms? He also does not make sense when he says that we are “dead to sin” yet he says that we are “dead to the law” but sin is the transgression of the Law (Towrah). If we are dead to sin, we are also dead to LAWLESSNESS:

1st Yahuwchanon (John) 3:4 Whosoever commits sin transgresses also the law: for sin is the transgression of the Towrah (law).

Now this Christian man is using this verse from Galatians 2:19 out of context when he says that we are “dead to the law” because he is not reading it in its full context.

Sha’ul (Paul) is telling us that we are dead to the corruptible form of the Law (in stone) which was impersonal and breakable. But we are alive to the incorruptible form of the law (Towrah) which is called the law of the Spirit of Life (Romans 8:2), or the perfect law of liberty.

Ya’aqob (James) 1:25 But whoso looks into the perfect Towrah (law) of liberty, and continues therein, he being not a forgetful hearer, but a doer of the work, this man shall be blessed in his deed.

Ya’aqob (James) 2:12 So speak you, and so do, as they that shall be judged by the Towrah (law) of liberty.

The brother of our Messiah Ya’aqob (James) speaks of the Towrah (law) as something that brings us liberty---not bondage!

The Towrah in the “letter” without the Holy Spirit’s power in us, is by itself of no use to us.

The Apostle Sha’ul (Paul) also explains the very same thing: 

2nd Corinthians 3:6 Who also has made us able ministers of the new testament; not of the letter, but of the spirit: for the letter kills, but the spirit gives life.

I have heard this verse quoted in a negative connotation where Christians often times imply that the Towrah (law) kills us spiritually; therefore it is of no use to us.

But the letter of the law (Towrah) is supposed to kill our flesh! When we hear the Towrah (Law) we are then convicted of our sins and this is what causes us to want to die to our old sinful nature. But once we are dead to our sinful nature, what is the result? The Holy Spirit then raises us up to new life in Messiah and then we are filled with the Holy Spirit, having the Towrah written in our hearts and minds.

2nd Corinthians 5:17 Therefore if any man be in MaShiYacH (Messiah), he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.

In our old nature we are like a caterpillar that crawls on the ground unable to obey the commandments. But as a butterfly we are given the perfect Towrah (Law) of Liberty and freedom from our former lawless (sinful) nature!

And so now this gives more meaning to why Messiah told us that we must worship the Father in “Spirit and in truth” (John 4:24). You see the book of truth (Towrah) convicts us of our sins and sets us free from our “self-deception.” Once we see ourselves accurately in the mirror (the perfect law of liberty), then we can repent and be healed. And then the Holy Spirit takes over from there and revives us (resurrects us) and gives us new life!

Therefore the Towrah is what brings us to the knowledge that we must “die” to the old sinful nature so that the Holy Spirit can resurrect us into a “new life” with Messiah! And once we are raised to new life in Messiah, what does the Holy Spirit teach us? The Holy Spirit then makes a deposit into our hearts and minds. And that deposit is the Towrah (Law) which now is a part of our innermost being:

Tehillim (Psalms) 51:6 Behold, you desire truth in the inward parts: and in the hidden part you shall make me to know wisdom.

The Towrah is accurately called “The Book of Truth” (Psalms 119:142) and so when the Holy Spirit deposits the Towrah in our hearts as a part of the Renewed Covenant (Jeremiah 31:31-33, Hebrews 8:10, 10:16), we now have the very same law within us in a better and more permanent form!

The Powdered Milk Analogy

The “letter” of Towrah is like powdered milk with no water added. You cannot partake of powdered milk without the water added back in. But when you add the water to the powdered milk, it becomes a living active enzyme again that can nourish the body. Torah without the spirit is dead just as powdered milk without the water is dead. But adding the “life” of the Holy Spirit to Towrah brings life and liberty! The verses below will illustrate this point about how the Towrah without the Holy Spirit activating it is dead. But through the power of the Holy Spirit, the Towrah is resurrected and has become incorruptible!

Powdered milk without the water is dry and lifeless. It is only activated by having water added. Likewise the Towrah without the Spirit is dead, lifeless and dry. If you feed a newborn baby plain water, he will die. Water alone cannot sustain and nourish. That is why trying to live by the Holy Spirit alone without the written Towrah is like trying to live on water alone. We need both the dry milk (Towrah) with the Living Water (Holy Spirit) to activate it and bring it to life! If you tried to spoon feed a baby dry powered milk, he would gag, since there would be no water to enable him to absorb the nutrients in the milk. Without the proper hydration, the dry milk would not be assimilated into the body.

Galatians 2:19 For I through the law (in stone) am dead to the law, that I might live unto Elohiym.

The Apostle Paul was illustrating this same point to the foolish Galatians who were just “going through the motions” of trying to practice the dead letter of the Towrah without a life in the Holy Spirit.

The Law of Divorce

What is the Law of Divorce in Deuteronomy 24? Well if you understand what the Law of Divorce is, then you will also understand what Romans 7 is referring to and it will make a lot more sense:  

Romans 7:4 Wherefore, my brethren, you also are become dead to the law (in the letter) by the body of MaShiYacH (Messiah); that you should be married to another, even to him who is raised from the dead, that we should bring forth fruit unto Elohiym.

Romans 7:6 But now we are delivered from the law (in stone), that being dead wherein we were held; that we should serve in newness of spirit, and not in the oldness of the letter.

Okay, so which law have we died to when we entered into blood Covenant with Messiah? When Yisra’el committed adultery spiritually against YaHuWaH, he wrote her a certificate of divorce and sent her away into the nations (Jeremiah 3:8). Deuteronomy 24 states that if she becomes married to another (Ba’al) then she can never go back to her first husband (YaHuWaH). And so when Messiah died for us, we died to the Law of Divorce! Now we are able to be married again to YaHuWaH because Messiah came in a different form (in human form) so that we are now able to be married to YaHuWaH again even though we were married to Baal (Satan). Yisra’el was first married to YaHuWaH and then he divorced her and wrote her a certificate of divorce (the hand-writing contained in ordinances). You see the handwriting of divorce kept Yisra’el from being reunited with YaHuWaH Elohiym (Colossians 2:14, Numbers 5:23) and so then she was married to Ba’al (Satan) and now she can never be joined to YaHuWaH again according to the Law of Divorce (Deuteronomy 24). And so what did he do in order to make it lawful for Yisra’el to marry him again? He died for her! Once a woman becomes a widow, then she is free from the Law of Divorce! Now we understand what Romans 7 is all about. Paul is not saying that we are dead to “the perfect Law of Liberty” (Towrah) but he is saying that we are dead to the Law of Divorce which kept us out of Covenant with YaHuWaH our Creator!

Notice the distinction that Sha’ul (Paul) made about the “newness of the Spirit” versus the “oldness of the Letter.”

This gives clarity to what Sha’ul meant in 2nd Corinthians 3:3 about how the Towrah has been transferred from stone into “fleshy tables of the heart”:

2nd Corinthians 3:3 Forasmuch as you are manifestly declared to be the epistle of MaShiYacH (Messiah) ministered by us, written not with ink, but with the Spirit of the living Elohiym; not in tables of stone, but in fleshy tables of the heart.

YaHuW’shuwa is the “The WORD” who came in the likeness of sinful flesh that he might destroy sin in the flesh (Romans 8:3). His corruptible flesh is the “word” (Towrah, Law) in the form of a mortal body made of corruptible flesh and it was destroyed on the stauros (cross), only to be replaced by the incorruptible word resurrected!

You see when we are born again by the Holy Spirit, the Towrah (Law) which first convicts us of sin and kills our flesh, then becomes resurrected in us and now lives in us as incorruptible life-giving seed!

1st Keefa (Peter) 1:23 Being born again, not of corruptible seed, but of incorruptible, by the word of Elohiym, which lived and abided forever.

YaHuW’shuwa Messiah also illustrated this principle to us:

YaHuW’chanon (John) 12:24 Verily, verily, I say unto you, Except a corn of wheat falls into the ground and dies, it abides alone: but if it dies, it brings forth much fruit.

You see here that the seed is the living word---YaHuW’shuwa who came to us in a mortal (corruptible) human form. He died and was buried just like a seed is buried into the earth. But when that seed dies (germinates) then it brings forth new life and then it suddenly resurrects and becomes a plant that bears fruit!

The Living Towrah is Yahuwshuwa, and he is THE LAW OF THE SPIRIT OF LIFE:

Romans 8:

2 For the law of the Spirit of life in MaShiYacH (Messiah) YaHuW’shuwa has made me free from the law of sin and death.

3 For what the law could not do, in that it was weak through the flesh, Elohiym sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, and for sin, condemned sin in the flesh:

That the righteousness of the law might be fulfilled in us, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit.

The Living Towrah---YaHuW’shuwa has freed us from the law of sin and death (the sinful nature).

The “letter” form of the law could not make us free because it was weak in our human corruptible flesh. But when the corruptible flesh was destroyed on the stauros (cross), the incorruptible new nature was made available to us so that now we have the very same Towrah (Law) or Instructions in a new incorruptible resurrected form! Now we are able through the power of the Holy Spirit to fulfill the righteousness of the Law (Towrah)!

1 comment:

  1. Amen! there is a difference.. between what some call the letter of the law.. which is the carnal interpretation. the outside of the shell.. and walking in the spirit . Yashua/Jesus is the word made flesh... that word was Moses revelation... and that revelation needed to be made carnal until the real deal came. First the natural , then the spiritual. the whole bible is not only historical but also in parables and the symbols /feasts are shadows of things to come.. it's secret code.. for those who really want to dig for treasure.." It's a glory for God to hide a matter,, but a glory of kings to search out a matter."