Living in Liberty


But be doers of the message and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves, because if anyone is a hearer of the message and not a doer, this one is like someone staring at his own face in a mirror, for he looks at himself and goes away and immediately forgets what sort of person he was. But the one who looks into the perfect law of liberty and continues to do it, not being a forgetful hearer but a doer who acts, this one will be blessed in what he does.

James 1:22–25 (LEB)

Psalms chapter 119 is divided into twenty-two paragraphs, each assigned a letter of the Hebrew alphabet. This is a great lesson because it shows the order of the Hebrew alphabet, along with the letters, dating back to the time of King David around 885 BCE. There are many portions of scripture that have this pattern, where the paragraphs correspond to the meanings of the letters in order. Psalms 119 tells us how to live in liberty, and it is not what one would expect if they listened to modern theologians. The letter that is the heading of this portion of scripture is the vav, also pronounced “waw”.

Psalm 119:41–48 (KJV 1900)

VAU.

41  Let thy mercies come also unto me, O Lord, Even thy salvation, according to thy word. 42  So shall I have wherewith to answer him that reproacheth me: For I trust in thy word. 43  And take not the word of truth utterly out of my mouth; For I have hoped in thy judgments. 44  So shall I keep thy law continually For ever and ever. 45  And I will walk at liberty: For I seek thy precepts. 46  I will speak of thy testimonies also before kings, And will not be ashamed. 47  And I will delight myself in thy commandments, Which I have loved. 48  My hands also will I lift up unto thy commandments, which I have loved; And I will meditate in thy statutes.

How can the writer of the Holy Spirit inspired book of Psalms “keep thy law continually for ever and ever” and “walk at liberty”? Are we not told today by super evangelists, pastors and teachers that “keeping thy law continually” is burdensome and the opposite of being liberated? King David must have been confused and didn’t realize that no one could keep the law and have freedom at the same time. Perhaps he was in a different dispensation and the Creator’s laws and instructions worked differently for David than for us? That is what we are lead to believe in the twenty-first century by dispensationlists. What if the Torah of God is as good as David thought it was, and as liberating even today? Scripture tells us there will be people that deceive everyone into thinking evil is good and good is evil. That is not only happening in the world, but also within Christianity. One would have to live in a cave, or be entirely deceived not to see that this is happening. The deception goes back to the first century.

Acts 20:27–31 (LEB): 27 for I did not shrink from proclaiming to you the whole purpose of God. 28 Be on guard for yourselves and for all the flock among which the Holy Spirit has appointed you as overseers, to shepherd the church of God which he obtained through the blood of his own Son. 29 I know that after my departure fierce wolves will come in among you, not sparing the flock. 30 And from among you yourselves men will arise, speaking perversions of the truth in order to draw away the disciples after them. 31 Therefore be on the alert, remembering that night and day for three years I did not stop warning each one of you with tears.

This idea that the instructions of the Creator are burdensome, and in some cases, sin, is the biggest trick the adversary has played on the church. The church preaches this deception, winning converts to a lawless gospel that has no future. At the very least, it will cause hardship throughout the life of the believer, sickness and demonic oppression, and the worst case scenario is weeping and gnashing of teeth when meeting Yeshua face to face.

Matthew 7:21–23 (LEB): 21 “Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter into the kingdom of heaven, but the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. 22 On that day many will say to me, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and expel demons in your name, and perform many miracles in your name?’ 23 And then I will say to them plainly, ‘I never knew you. Depart from me, you who practice lawlessness!

Yeshua faced this problem of deception and negation of the commandments from the religious leaders of His day. They hated Yeshua for exposing their bad theology to the people. Imagine telling a pastor or priest today that their converts are twice as much a son of hell then they are? They deceived people with made up doctrines that make the commandments of God void. Maybe without this deception, the convert would have found the truth. Lies and deception concerning God’s commandments cause people to enter into a delusion. Maybe this is why Paul tells us the law is spiritual. Yeshua told the religious leaders of His day that they were creating converts that were worse than themselves. Are we not still witnessing this today in Christianity?

Matthew 23:15 (LEB): 15 “Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees—hypocrites!—because you travel around the sea and the dry land to make one convert, and when he becomes one, you make him twice as much a son of hell as you are!

How can God’s instructions, or Torah, give us liberty? One way this happens is that one is freed from the dogma and man-made rules presented as doctrine. This happens in both Christianity and Judaism. Yeshua constantly corrected the religious leaders in the first century. Christianity has only adopted a different set of rules depending on which one of the thousands of denominations one belongs.

Another way to achieve liberty through obedience to the father is by not fighting the Holy Spirit of grace’s conviction. If one listens to the Spirit, these things will tug at one’s spirit and heart. The choices are to sear the conscience with a hot iron, or be attentive to the Holy Spirit. Paul tells us we can walk in the Spirit, or walk in the flesh. Through walking in the Spirit, listening to the Spirit’s voice, we can please God and do what He has said to do. This is all possible through the Messiah’s atonement. However, before the Messiah ever went to the cross, people were still able to “keep the perfect law of liberty”. The difference being, there was no true atonement when someone failed, and everyone fails or sins.

Luke 1:5–6 (LEB): It happened that in the days of Herod, king of Judea, there was a certain priest, Zechariah by name, of the division of Abijah. And he had a wife from the daughters of Aaron, and her name was Elizabeth. 6 And they were both righteous in the sight of God, living blamelessly in all the commandments and regulations of the Lord.

The parents of John the Baptist “were both righteous in the sight of God, living blamelessly in all the commandments“, but they were not perfect. Look what happens.

Luke 1:18–20 (LEB): 18 And Zechariah said to the angel, “By what will I know this? For I am an old man, and my wife is advanced in years!” 19 And the angel answered and said to him, “I am Gabriel, who stands in the presence of God, and I was sent to speak to you and to announce to you this good news. 20 And behold, you will be silent and not able to speak until the day these things take place, because you did not believe my words, which will be fulfilled in their time.”

James also speaks of the law of liberty in his letter to the church. The letter is to the twelve tribes in the dispersion, which Stephen labeled as the church, in Acts chapter seven.

James 1:19–25 (LEB): 19 Understand this, my dear brothers: every person must be quick to hear, slow to speak, slow to anger, 20 for human anger does not accomplish the righteousness of God. 21 Therefore, putting aside all moral uncleanness and wicked excess, welcome with humility the implanted message which is able to save your souls. 22 But be doers of the message and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves, 23 because if anyone is a hearer of the message and not a doer, this one is like someone staring at his own face in a mirror, 24 for he looks at himself and goes away and immediately forgets what sort of person he was. 25 But the one who looks into the perfect law of liberty and continues to do it, not being a forgetful hearer but a doer who acts, this one will be blessed in what he does.

The only perfect law is the law of God, or His Torah. James understood the only scripture he had in the first century. This was before the wolves came with their lawless doctrine. This was before the Walt Disney gospel of dispensationalism, which tells us God made a mistake and our dispensation of time is the only one that God’s law or instructions do not apply.

Psalm 19:7–11 (LEB): The law of Yahweh is perfect, reviving life. The testimony of Yahweh is firm, making wise the simple. The precepts of Yahweh are right, making the heart rejoice. The command of Yahweh is pure, enlightening the eyes. The fear of Yahweh is pure, enduring forever. The ordinances of Yahweh are true; they are righteous altogether, 10 more desirable than gold, even much fine gold; and sweeter than honey, even honey in the comb. 11 Moreover, your servant is warned by them; in keeping them is great reward.

Paul understood the perfect law of liberty.

Romans 2:13 (LEB): 13 For it is not the hearers of the law who are righteous in the sight of God, but the doers of the law will be declared righteous.

Romans 7:12 (LEB): 12 So then, the law is holy, and the commandment is holy and righteous and good.

Just as there are people today who claim keeping the commandments of God is not necessary, there were people in Paul’s and James’ time claiming it was the only way to be justified before God. Paul tells us that justification comes through faith in God and not the law. The law defines sin for us, it does not save us. However, if we are lead by the Spirit we should not be found sinning, which is defined by the law. People use Paul’s message to justify sin, or say certain parts of God’s law are no longer sin. This is how we have so many branches of Christianity. All of the law defines sin. It is that simple. It is not just the laws certain people call “moral” or “ceremonial”. Many laws in the Torah are no longer possible to do without the temple and the Levite priest system. That system is not gone by accident. Yeshua ended the sacrificial system, or at least paused it until the Millennial kingdom.

1 Timothy 1:8–11 (LEB): But we know that the law is good, if anyone makes use of it lawfully, knowing this, that the law is not given for a righteous person but for the lawless and rebellious, for the ungodly and sinners, for the unholy and totally worldly, for the one who kills his father and the one who kills his mother, for murderers, 10 sexually immoral people, homosexuals, kidnappers, liars, perjurers, and whatever else is opposed to sound teaching, 11 according to the glorious gospel of the blessed God that I was entrusted with.

The rebellious person will say “I can do whatever I want now”, or “the Sabbath is any day I choose, or not important at all”, when the law of God says otherwise. One cannot uphold the law as Paul did, and at the same time tell his followers to break the law. How many of God’s laws does a person have to intentionally ignore or proudly say “they don’t apply to me” to hear the Savior say, “Depart from me you worker of lawlessness.”? I guess we will have to wait to find out. The prophet Daniel told us the Messiah would end sacrificial law.

Daniel 9:24–27 (LEB): 24 “Seventy weeks is decreed for your people and for your holy city, to put an end to the transgression and to seal up sin and to make atonement for guilt and to bring in everlasting righteousness and to seal vision and prophet and to anoint the most holy place. 25 And you must know and you must understand that from the time of the going out of the word to restore and build Jerusalem until an anointed one—a leader—will be seven weeks and sixty-two weeks; it will be restored and will be built with streets and a moat, but in a time of oppression.

26 “And after the sixty and two weeks an anointed one shall be cut off, and he shall have nothing, and the people of the coming leader will destroy the city and the sanctuary, and its end will be with the flood and on to the end there shall be war; these desolations are determined. 27 And he will make a strong covenant with the many for one week, but in half of the week he will let cease sacrifice and offering and in its place a desolating abomination comes even until the determined complete destruction is poured out on the desolator.”

In these verses there is the anointed one, cut off in the middle of the week, in other words, Yeshua nailed to the cross. There are the people of the coming leader, still the anointed one, who made a strong covenant with the many, for one week with the bread and the wine. His death and shedding of blood made the sacrifice and offerings unnecessary. In it’s place, a desolating abomination comes until determined complete destruction.

John 6:54–55 (LEB): 54 The one who eats my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life, and I will raise him up on the last day. 55 For my flesh is true food, and my blood is true drink.

I know that some of these verses are used to describe the antichrist in dispensationalism theology. We have to insert over 2000 years arbitrarily within the 70 weeks for this. The weeks match sequentially much better with history, if we view the seventy weeks literally as weeks of years.

Does one submit to the Spirit of grace and walk in the perfect law of liberty, or does one stiffen their neck and walk in the flesh continually sinning before God? Everyone must make this choice. The decision has eternal consequences. Do we believe Messiah Yeshua or the imaginations flowing out of men’s minds?

Matthew 5:17–19 (LEB): 17 “Do not think that I have come to destroy the law or the prophets. I have not come to destroy them but to fulfill them. 18 For truly I say to you, until heaven and earth pass away, not one tiny letter or one stroke of a letter will pass away from the law until all takes place. 19 Therefore whoever abolishes one of the least of these commandments and teaches people to do so will be called least in the kingdom of heaven, but whoever keeps them and teaches them, this person will be called great in the kingdom of heaven.

I want to be called great in the kingdom, walk in the Spirit and possess the Spirit of truth promised to those who keep the commandments.

John 14:15–17 (LEB): 15 “If you love me, you will keep my commandments. 16 And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Advocate, in order that he may be with you forever—17 the Spirit of truth, whom the world is not able to receive, because it does not see him or know him. You know him, because he resides with you and will be in you.

Repent and believe the gospel! Walk in the law of liberty and be a doer of His word not simply a hearer.

Photo by Noah Silliman on Unsplash

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