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Episode #80 – Back to the Law

June 29, 2008

with Martha Kilpatrick and hosted by John Enslow
with Special Guest Vicki Harris missionary to Vienna Austria

(J) Well we’re here today, and we’re overlooking Vienna City; we’re in the city of Cabenzol, which is on the edge of the Vienna Woods that we have been walking in. We’re sitting at a café right now; you’ll hear the people behind us speaking, but we’re having a cup of coffee looking over the city right now. And the sun has gone to a particular place that it’s really kind of nice; it’s a light little breeze and we’re in the shade and so we’re enjoying ourselves. We have a real interesting message today, and I’m really looking forward to hearing and joining in on this message because I think it’s really vital. And so Martha, how would you like to start it today?
(M) Well it began when Vicki was telling me about the tendency in part of Christianity today, to go back to the law. And we talked about it some; I’d like her to tell us about it. But the next morning in my quiet time the Lord showed me that we’ve been talking about control. And one of the results of when I control a person is to put them under your own laws. And that is to actually curse them. So the Lord was relating it to something in my life, but He took it to the word law, and that made it in a whole different category for me. Because I have been exposed to those areas that want to go back to the Torah and keep the Torah and keep the feasts. There’s a great move in Christianity today to do it. I don’t think people understand how wrong that is. So Vicki’s been exposed to it too, so I wanted to ask her to share about it.
(Vicki) I was sharing with Martha that several months ago we had some people visiting us here in Vienna, and looking at the work that’s being done ecumenically. And I had the opportunity to spend a couple of days with them. And during that time, they were speaking very strongly about how they could really help me order my Christian walk by doing, reading certain things at different times during the day, and following some different celebrations and so forth; and really structuring my time. And the entire time I was listening to them speak my spirit was so disquieted. I told Martha I really do not know of another time in my life that I felt such anxiety and distress really, in my spirit. And um, one evening I truly could not sleep. I tossed and turned, and finally about two o’clock in the morning I got up and just fell down on my face in my living room and cried out to God, what is this distress? What is this that is just tormenting me? And I really believe that He showed me that it was the law, trying to be drawn into following a set of rules instead of walking by His Spirit. And He even spoke to me and said that what these people think they’re doing is bringing you revelation, but what they actually need is love.
(M) And I think you said that you and your prayer partner really were disturbed for at least a month over this. And it so registered with me, because we have, we have, we had someone come to our group in the mountains, and it deeply disturbed several people; who brought the law, and very much said you must go back and keep Shabbat in the Jewish manner. And something so rose up in me that was just indignant; and I tried to contain it and control it and be nice, but she could very much see how I felt. And I wondered later if that was the Spirit in Paul that rose up to confront Peter in front of everyone, and correct him. And ah, I think John you walked out on the meeting didn’t you?
(J) Absolutely. I just, I couldn’t take it; I just got up and walked out. And I think I looked at you and said time to go!
(M) Well, it was quite an experience, and I said you need to read the book of Galatians. And she said Galatians has been misinterpreted. What she said, I know Galatians. So really we parted company then, because I wasn’t going to let her disturb the sheep. It took a lot of straightening out to deal with the effects she left behind.
(J) If I could have done it again, I would have said this is over, you need to leave. I just took you out, but I should have taken, I should have kicked her out. And ah, we should have done a debriefing and say ok, you know, this is error. Because you know really, we left, and she continued to talk. And she totally tore these people up. She made them feel, you know, all kinds of stuff. And I’m like going, you know, we need to untangle it.
(Vicki) That’s so interesting to me too, because one of the things that was said to us is that. I said well you know the Word of God says that all the law and prophets are fulfilled in Christ. He himself has fulfilled it all. And I was told, well that’s not a correct interpretation of what that means. And so, isn’t it interesting, this idea that it’s not, well we just say it’s not interpreted correctly.
(J) That has been what we’ve heard from almost every single ‘law-keeper’, so to speak; or even the Jews, they say oh, but the words not translated, that’s incorrect translation. You look and you go well how do you mistranslate Isaiah 53, and with all the Messianic prophecies? And they say oh those are just incorrectly translated into your language. And I’m like going, I don’t think so.
(M ) And we had someone else want me to study a site that is; the main thrust of it is we need to go back to the Torah. And I went to the site, and immediately shut it down, because I said this is another gospel, this is different gospel. And you wouldn’t think that ah, going to the Torah would be going to another gospel, but that’s exactly what Galatians says. Paul says, “I’m amazed you are so quickly deserting Him who called you by the grace of Christ, for a different gospel, which really is not another, only there are some that are disturbing you.” And that’s what happens; if you have the gospel, and this law thing comes in, it is very disturbing. And want to distort the gospel of Christ. “Even if we or an angel from heaven should preach to you a gospel contrary to what we preach to you, he is to be accursed.” That’s very bold, and to me very clear. And as Vicki said a minute ago, Galatians is unusually clear. Some of the books are more obscure, but that’s really clear. And he said it a second time in Galatians 1:9, “ As we have said before, so we say again now, if any man is preaching to you a gospel contrary to what you received, he is to be accursed.” And then he goes on to describe his own gospel; how he got it, how her learned that it’s all grace. And then he stood up to Peter in front of everyone; he the newcomer, the young kid on the Christian ‘block’, stood up against this great apostle. That’s the measure of his understanding of the gospel of Jesus Christ. But the thing I want to say is that the law of the Spirit; there’s only one law now. We were in a place where this man came and expounding all this stuff that was really law. And I said to him, there’s only one law now, the law of the Spirit. And he agreed and agreed and agreed, and went right on. But really it is only the law of the Spirit now. And the law of the Spirit is higher than the entire Law of Moses, because it’s a law of the heart. It’s an impossible law that only the life of Christ can keep. And we can only fulfill it in His perfect conformity to the law of the Spirit. And yet He was a shock to those who kept the law, because He healed people on the Sabbath, He ate the grain in the field on the Sabbath, and His disciples didn’t wash in the ceremonial washing, so, and He healed on the Sabbath. And so ah, we do have a law, we’re not to be lawless, we’re not to have license at all. In fact I read today, Oswald, not Oswald but ah T. Austin Sparks said, “Unless you possess and activate and live in the righteousness of Christ, there will be no power of God or presence of God with you.” So we’ve had some experiential things in this. “A man is not justified by the works of the law, but through faith in Christ Jesus. Even we who have believed in Christ Jesus so that we may be justified by faith in Christ, and not by the works of the law, since by the works of the law no flesh will be justified. For through the law I died to the law, so that I might live to God and for God.” And then Paul writes to the Galatians “You foolish Galatians, who has bewitched you?” There’s a certain, when the law comes in after the cross, there’s a certain witchcraft that accompanies it; it’s kind of strange, I don’t know how to explain it but it’s right there. Who bewitched you? They came under a spell where people used the law, the law itself doesn’t put you under a spell, but they used the law to control. And it doesn’t have to be the Law of Moses. People who come into your life and want to dictate who you will be, what you will do, how you will respond, even what you will say, they’re putting you under their law, and it will absolutely debilitate you. It will take you out of commission if you have any receptivity to it. There has to be in your life only the law of the Spirit. And John’s going to tell a rather fantastic story that some won’t believe John.
(J) That’s right, that’s right.
(M) That’s OK. So I’d like you to tell about it.
(J) Can I ask you a question first?
(M) Sure.
(J) Um, ok, do you think the reason why you can be bewitched by the law is because somewhere in our flesh we really do, I mean it’s back in from the Garden of Eden, but we really do want to do it by our self? That it is.
(Vicki) I’m stunned because that’s exactly what I was thinking; I’m thinking how can I ask this, how can I interrupt to ask this question?
(J) Well here you go I’ll do it. And so I mean, it’s almost feeding on our own flesh and dingle dangling.
(Vicki) Our need to perform.
(J) Absolutely. And so, I mean, so obviously this is a yes, um.
(M) You answered it exactly, and so did Vicki, its ego. It’s the pride that we think ‘we can’. It feels good, it feels better keep a law and do it well, rather than being dependent, vulnerable and weak, and need God. You’re exactly right, that’s great.
(J) It’s amazing, it’s always amazing to me. We really don’t. . . if you give me ten steps, and I just can follow these ten steps every day, and then I get to heaven? Oh wow, how wonderful that would be. I just have to do these ten little checklists…bing-bing-bing-bing-bing, and then I go, but.
(M) But the problem is as I’ve said before on tape, and we have seen it in life, that when you keep the law, immorality explodes. The only way to remain in God’s standard is to follow the law of the Spirit, by the power of the Spirit. And wherever there’s legalism there’s going to be immorality. Because you can’t control the flesh, the flesh will break out of that constraint that you try to put on it. And the flesh will rule you instead of you ruling the flesh by the law.
(J) We heard that, you know it’s a real kind of shocking tale, but we’ve heard of the immorality among the orthodox, and um that there’s some serious immorality, secret immorality, and you know it’s just kind of a shocking tale of, people that are in the know that know that that’s what happens. And so ah, but you’ve always said that, you’ve always said it. That wherever there’s law there will be immorality, period.
(M) That wouldn’t be true of everyone who is orthodox.
(J) Oh no, no, no, I’m not saying it’s everyone, yeah, no. But there is immorality in it.
(M) Really bad.
(J) Right, right. And no, it’s not everyone. And you know, there are levels of knowledge of God. And so anyway.

 

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