Where there is mixing between the old covenant of law and the new covenant of grace, you lose both and the benefits of the two covenants are nullified. What is the spiritual basis for this truth? Let’s look at what Jesus said in Mark 2:22: “And no one pours new wine into old wine skins. If he does, the wine will burst the skins, and both the wine and the wine skins will be ruined. No, he must pour new wine into new wine skins.”
Now what was Jesus referring to when He talked about the new wine and the old wine skins? He was referring to the mixing of the two covenants. The new wine represents the new covenant of grace while the old wine skins represent the old covenant of law.
Therefore, when you mix the two, the virtues of both the old and the new covenants will be cancelled out and lost. That is why Jesus also said to the church at Laodicea “I know your deeds, that you are neither cold nor hot. I wish you were either one or the other! So because you are lukewarm-neither hot nor cold-I am about to spit you out of my mouth.” Rev 3:15,16
Traditionally, we have been taught that hot means that you are going to church every time the doors are open, reading 10 chapters of the Bible per day, witnessing to everyone, and attending every prayer gathering you can find. But to be cold means to be just the opposite, you stopped doing these things entirely.
These two verses have mostly been preached as though it were about our actions and behaviors, but Jesus said that He would rather we be cold or hot and not lukewarm. Now this would not make any sense if Jesus was referring to actions or behaviors, because wouldn’t being lukewarm for Jesus still be better than being completely cold. So why would He want the church of Laodicea to be cold if they were not hot? Let’s please put on our thinking caps. You have to test the message and make sure it is consistent with the gospel of grace.
These two verses would only make sense when they are interpreted in the light of the mixing of the two covenants of law and grace in the church of Laodicea and in every church for that matter. I believe that’s exactly what our Lord meant. You see, if you were completely under law, it would lead you to despair and into the saving arms of Jesus.
The law would unveil to you your sinfulness and inability to keep the full measure of the law, and this would cause you to see your need for His grace.
But when you have mixture, where you believe in grace but grab hold of the law, you neutralize the convicting power of the law to bring you to the end of yourself so that you will cry out for the grace of the Savior. That is why you cannot be cold and hot at the same time or be for both law and grace at the same time. The moment you attempt to mix grace with the law, each covenant is robbed of its full effect in your life. You become lukewarm because of the mixing of hot and cold (law and grace), and God hates mixture and said He is about to spit you out of His mouth. Why? Because it robs you of the power to reign or prevail in life through the abundance of His grace.
The law has no place in the life of a Christian. It seems our greatest fear is that we will be out of control without the law. The fact of the matter is we were never made to be in control. Self-control has always been a natural attribute of the Holy Spirit. The reason the spirit of Christ lives within us is to produce the self-control that we are afraid we will lack under grace. See II Corinthians 12:9 (My strength is made perfect in weakness, my grace is sufficient for you.)
Be careful not to ignore the purpose of the law today. The law is designed to convict sinners of their depraved state; however it cannot offer a solution. Only Jesus Christ can cleanse us from the sin the law reveals. Although the law plays an important role in the world today, it has no place in the life of a born again believer.
Now this is exactly what the Apostle Paul was saying to the Galatians when he explained to them the purpose of the law.
LIFE LESSON: “So the law was put in charge to lead you to Christ that we might be justified by faith. Now that faith has come, we are no longer under the supervision of the law.” Gal 3:24, 25
MIXING LAW AND GRACE MAKES LUKEWARM CHRISTIANS. Here is a New Year’s resolution for you and it’s not too late:
“No mixing in twenty sixteen.”