Our study of Leviticus is starting to wind down and preparations are being made for the next study. The elders thought it would be helpful to segue into a study of the prophecy of Christ, as it relates to the scheme of redemption. More on that to come soon. It is our hope that in some manner, our present study has helped us to understand even more, how marvelous the gospel of Christ truly is.
For the law was given through Moses, but grace and truth came through Jesus Christ.
John acknowledges that the law (here, most likely referring to the first five books of the Old Testament), was a gift to God’s people, with Moses as the mediator. It is important to be reminded that the law itself was “holy, and the commandment holy and just and good” (Romans 7:12). The issue was man’s inability to uphold the law; thus, God found “fault with them” (Hebrews 8:8). The law was not put in place to inform God about His creation, it was put in place to teach His creation their need for redemption. That redemption would be found in Jesus Christ, “the Word that became flesh and dwelt among us” (John 1:14) who is “full of grace and truth.” John is proclaiming the superiority of Christ over the law.
The simple fact that Jesus is God incarnate is sufficient in showing His superiority, but there is more to it than that. Grace came through Christ! Depending on where you look, grace is often defined as goodwill, loving kindness, favor. Paul writes in 2nd Corinthians 8:9, “For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though He was rich, yet for your sakes He became poor, that you, through His poverty might become rich.” This is why Thayer’s elaborates about grace saying, “That through pity for sinful men Christ left his state of blessedness with God in heaven, and voluntarily underwent the hardships and miseries of human life, and by his sufferings and death procured salvation for mankind.” What Jesus did that we might have eternal life is truly amazing grace.
Personally, I believe one of the boldest statements Jesus makes is found in John 14:6, where He says, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.” Jesus is “full of…truth” (John 1:14), a truth that when understood, can set one free (John 8:32). What is truth? Here, it refers to the truth as taught in the Christian religion, respecting God and the execution of his purposes through Christ, and respecting the duties of man.
Paul writes, “Therefore the law was our tutor to bring us to Christ…” (Galatians 3:24). Whenever man places his trust in his own performance (law), he is doomed to fail. But when we place our faith in Him who is full of grace and truth, victory is ours. Thank You Lord for your redemptive work!