In Dr Martyn Lloyd-Jones’ “Studies in the Sermon on the Mount“, he commented that misunderstanding will arise when preaching with a “mighty emphasis upon grace”. An erroneous and dangerous misunderstanding led some to think and believe wrongly that the perfect moral Law of God, Decalogue or Ten Commandments, has no place in the life of a believer: New Testament’s grace has made the Old Testament’s moral law redundant. This is not the truth taught by scriptures:
“There was never a man whose preaching, with its mighty emphasis upon grace, was so frequently misunderstood [as Paul]. You remember the deduction some people had been drawing in Rome and in other places. They said, ‘Now then, in view of the teaching of this man Paul, let us do evil that grace may abound, for, surely, this teaching is something that leads to that conclusion and to no other. Paul has just been saying, “Where sin abounded grace did much more abound”; very well, let us continue in sin that more and more grace may abound.’ ‘God forbid’, says Paul; and he is constantly having to say that. To say that because we are under grace we therefore have nothing at all to do with law and can forget it, is not the teaching of the Scriptures. We certainly are no longer under the law but under grace. Yet that does not mean we need not keep the law. We are not under the law in the sense that it condemns us; it no longer pronounces judgement or condemnation on us. No! but we are meant to live it, and we are even meant to go beyond it. The argument of the Apostle Paul is that I should live, not as a man who is under the law, but as Christ’s free man. Christ kept the law, He lived the law; as this very Sermon on the Mount emphasizes, our righteousness must exceed that of the scribes and Pharisees. Indeed, He has not come to abolish the law; every jot and tittle of the law has to be fulfilled and perfected. Now that is something which we very frequently find forgotten in this attempt to put up law and grace as antitheses, and the result is that men and women often completely and entirely ignore the law.
But let me put it this way. It is not true to say of many of us that in actual practice our view of the doctrine of grace is such that we scarcely ever take the plain teaching of the Lord Jesus Christ seriously ? We have so emphasized the teaching that all is of grace and that we ought not to imitate His example in order to make ourselves Christians, that we are virtually in the position of ignoring His teaching altogether and of saying that it has nothing to do with us because we are under grace. Now I wonder how seriously we take the gospel of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ . ” Martyn Lloyd-Jones – Studies in the Sermon on the Mount, i, p. 12 (emphasis in bold are mine)
“Do not think that I have come to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I have not come to abolish them but to fulfill them. For truly, I say to you, until heaven and earth pass away, not an iota, not a dot, will pass from the Law until all is accomplished. Therefore whoever relaxes one of the least of these commandments and teaches others to do the same will be called least in the kingdom of heaven, but whoever does them and teaches them will be called great in the kingdom of heaven. For I tell you, unless your righteousness exceeds that of the scribes and Pharisees, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven. Mathews 5:17- 20
But it is easier for heaven and earth to pass away than for one dot of the Law to become void. Luke 16:17