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What was Abolished by Christ
1. HOW did Christ's death on the cross affect the whole sacrificial system?
"After threescore and two weeks shall Messiah be cut off. . . . And He shall
confirm the covenant with many for one week: and in the midst of the week He shall
cause the sacrifice and the oblation to cease." Dan. 9:26,27.
2. What did Christ nail to His cross?
"Blotting out the handwriting of ordinances that was against us, which was
contrary to us, and took it out of the way, nailing it to His cross." Col.
3. What did He thus abolish?
"Having abolished in His flesh the enmity, even the law of commandments
contained in ordinances; for to make in Himself of twain one new man, so making peace;
and that He might reconcile both unto God in one body by the cross, having slain the
enmity thereby." Eph. 2:15,16.
4. To what did the ordinances pertain that were thus abolished?
"Let no man therefore judge you in meat, or in drink, or in respect
of an holy day, or of the new moon, or of the sabbath days: which are a
shadow of things to come; but the body is of Christ." Col. 2:16,17.
5. From what statement do we learn that these ordinances related to the sacrificial
"For the law having a shadow of good things to come, and not the very image
of the things, can never with those sacrifices which they offered year by year continually
make the comers thereunto perfect." Heb. 10:1.
6. What occurred at the time of the crucifixion which indicated that the typical
system had been taken away by Christ?
"And, behold, the veil of the temple was rent in twain from the top to the
bottom; and the earth did quake, and the rocks rent." Matt. 27:51.
7. In what language is this clearly stated?
"Then said He, Lo, I come to do Thy will, O God, He taketh away the first, that
He may establish the second." Heb. 10:9.
8. What is the first which He took away?
"Above when He said, Sacrifice and offering and burnt offerings
and offering for sin thou wouldest not, neither hadst pleasure therein; which are
offered by the law," Verse 8.
NOTES.-"He taketh away the first." The connection plainly indicates that what
Christ took away was ceremonialism as expressed in the typical service of sacrifices and
offerings, and that what He established, by giving Himself to do the will of God, was the
experience of doing the will of God on the part of the believer. Thus He made possible the
answer to the petition which He taught His disciples, "Thy will be done in earth, as
it is in heaven." Instead of abolishing the moral law, Christ made such provision
that every believer in Him may become a doer of that law.
"The word first here refers to sacrifices and offerings, He takes them
away; that is, He shows that they are of no value in removing sin. He states their
inefficacy, and declares His purpose to abolish them. 'That He may establish the
second'- to wit, the doing of the will of God. . .
If they had been efficacious, there would have been no need of His coming to make an
atonement."-Dr. Albert Barnes, on Heb, 10:9.
9. In what statement to the woman at Jacob's well did Jesus intimate that the
ceremonial system of worship would be abolished?
"Jesus saith unto her, Woman, believe Me, the hour cometh, when ye shall neither
in this mountain, nor yet at Jerusalem, worship the Father." John 4:21.
NOTE.-The worship of the Jews centered in the typical system, or ritual service, of the
temple, "at Jerusalem," while the Samaritans had instituted a rival service
"in this mountain," Mt. Gerizim. In His statement to the woman of Samaria, Jesus
therefore indicated that the time was at hand when the whole typical system would be done
10. What test cast arose in the time of the apostles over this question?
"And certain men which came down from Judea taught the brethren, and said, Except
ye be circumcised after the manner of Moses, ye cannot be saved." Acts 15:1.
11. What requirement was made by these teachers from Judea concerning the ceremonial
"Forasmuch as we have heard, that certain which went out from us have troubled you
with words, subverting your souls, saying, Ye must be circumcised, and keep the law: to
whom we gave no such commandment." Verse 24.
12. After conferring over this matter, what decision was reached by the apostles?
"For it seemed good to the Holy Ghost, and to us, to lay upon you no greater
burden than these necessary things; that ye abstain from meats offered to idols, and
from blood, and from things strangled, and from fornication: from which if ye keep
yourselves, ye shall do well. Fare ye well." Verses 28,29.
13. What charge was made against Stephen concerning his attitude toward the
"And set up false witnesses, which said, This man ceaseth not to speak blasphemous
words against this holy place, and the law: for we have heard him say, that
this Jesus of Nazareth shall destroy this place, and shall change the customs which
Moses delivered us." Acts 6:13,14.
14. What similar charge was brought against the apostle Paul?
"This fellow persuadeth men to worship God contrary to the law." Acts
15. What statement did Paul make concerning his faith and manner of worship?
"But this I confess unto thee, that after the way which they call heresy,
so worship I the God of my fathers, believing all things which are written in the law
and in the prophets." Acts 24:14.
NOTE.-The charge against Stephen and Paul was not based upon any violation of the moral
law, but upon their teaching concerning the ceremonial law; and Paul's admission that he
was guilty of what they called heresy meant simply that he differed from them as to the
obligation to observe any longer the precepts of the law which was imposed upon them
"until the time of reformation." The simple fact that such charges were
preferred against these able exponents and teachers of the gospel shows that in their view
the ceremonial law had been abolished by the death of Christ, and that like the giving of
the moral law at Sinai it was designed to lead men to Christ.
16. What is one of the offices of the moral law?
"Wherefore the law was our schoolmaster to bring us unto Christ, that we
might be justified by faith." Gal. 3:24.
17. How is this same teaching expressed in another place?
"For Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to every one that
believeth." Rom. 10:4.
NOTE.-Murdock's translation of the Syriac New Testament renders this passage: "For
Messiah is the aim of the law, for righteousness, unto everyone that believeth in
18. In what statement is there a similar use of the word end?
"Receiving the end of your faith, even the salvation of your souls." 1
Peter 1:9. See also 1 Tim. 1:5; James 5:11.
NOTE.-In the ceremonial law there was "a shadow of good things to come," a
type of the mediatorial work of Christ, our great High Priest. The moral law makes known
sin, places the sinner under condemnation, and forces him to Christ for pardon and
cleansing. The ceremonial law was abolished by the work of Christ, but the moral law was
established by both His life and death.
19. What testimony did Christ bear concerning His relation to the law and the
"Think not that I am come to destroy the law, or the
prophets: I am not come to destroy, but to fulfil." Matt. 5:17.
NOTE.-"Christ kept the law. If He had ever broken it, He would have had to die for
Himself; but because He was a Lamb without spot or blemish, His atoning death is
efficacious for you and me. He had no sin of His own to atone for, and so God accepted His
sacrifice. Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to everyone that believeth. We
are righteous in God's sight because the righteousness of God which is by faith in Jesus
Christ is unto all and upon all them that believe."- "Weighed and
Wanting," by D. L. Moody, pages 123,124. See also notes in Chapters 82., 83. and
86. of this book.
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