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Paul Commands Us to Uphold the Law | Romans 3:31

Romans 3:31 Do we then overthrow the law by this faith? By no means! May it never be, on the contrary, we uphold the law.

What does the text say?

It says, ‘Do we overthrow the Law? By no means! We uphold the Law.’

For clarity, let’s look at some of the words that Paul uses in Romans 3:31.

The word “overthrow” is Strong’s G2673, καταργοῦμεν/katargoumen in the Greek. This is the word that Paul wrote to tell the whole world what the Law is not. Katargoumen is defined by Thayer’s Greek Lexicon as: to cause to cease, put an end to, do away with, annul, abolishThis is what Paul says the Law of God given through Moses is not.

Very clearly, and under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, Paul states the Law is not overthrown or abolished or annulled or terminated by our faith.

What then becomes of the Law?

Paul concisely states, “we uphold the Law“!

The word “uphold” in the Greek is Strong’s G2476, ἱστάνομεν/histanomen, and Thayer’s Greek Lexicon states this to mean: to stand by, to stand firm, to establish, to keep in place, to uphold, to continue safe and soundThis is the word that the apostle Paul used to tell the whole world what we are to do with the Law of God given through Moses.

This word “uphold”, histanomen in the Greek, is a Present Tense Verb which is Active Indicative and 1st Person Plural; that is:

  1. the tense is present describing action taking place now;
  2. the voice is active meaning that the verb’s subject (“we“) is doing the acting and not being acted upon;
  3. and the mood is indicative which demonstrates true reality;
  4. and the viewpoint of the narrator/speaker refers to or talks about himself together with others.

Uphold“; this is the word that Paul used to tell us what “we” are supposed to do with the Law, “in the here and now“. He says we are to – stand by it, uphold it, keep it in place, establish it, stand firm in it! According to the Apostle Paul, we are to observe and keep the Law; not to be justified or to earn salvation, but to walk rightly and set-apart before our Creator and King.

How passionate is Paul about this? How does he respond to an apparent notion that we might misunderstand him or somehow assume that the Law might be overthrown or put to an end by our faith?

Paul vehemently says “μὴ γένοιτο”/”mē genoito”, which is literally “never be” and stated by Thayer’s Greek Lexicon as: “a formula especially frequent in Paul, Far be it! God forbid!”

So, why does mainstream theology teach the opposite of what Paul taught??

It’s because he is greatly misunderstood as Peter warned in 2 Peter 3:15-17.

I scratched the surface of Romans 3:31 in “Justification vs. Righteousness”, discussing how the justification we have through belief in the Messiah is not contrary to the righteousness embodied in the Law of God given through Moses. We don’t obey and uphold the Law for justification or salvation; that’s unscriptural and unsound doctrine. We uphold His Laws in order to “not” sin. His Instructions (Laws) are His ‘Right Ways’ of living.

That’s why Paul commands us to “uphold” the Law and not to make it void or overthrow it…

Paul never taught that the Law was abolished nor had passed away. In fact, he says just the opposite, that faith does nothing to void or abolish or do away with the Law! Please read ‘The Law: Fulfilled or Abolished‘.

The disconnect is this: because Paul chastises some believers in his letters for “trying to be justified” by keeping the Law, we have errantly assumed that Paul is telling “everyone everywhere” that keeping the Law is by default “trying to be justified”; this is a false assumptionPlease read ‘Galatians Part 1: Freedom or Bondage‘.

Again, I repeat, today’s mainstream theology teaches and preaches the exact opposite of what Paul taught.

The ‘truth‘ is, we do not and cannot keep the Law of God for salvation, deliverance or justification; that is blatantly obvious, as this is taught nowhere, from ‘Genesis’ to ‘Revelation’. That being said, any assumptions or personal interpretation of a text using our own ideas (eisegesis) beyond that ‘truth‘ is adding to the Word of God. Just because we shouldn’t keep the Law ‘for justification/salvation’, does not mean we shouldn’t keep it at all. If we pluck out part of a verse here, or half of a sentence there from Paul’s writings, without the context of the surrounding verses and chapters (and testing it to the whole Word of God), we can ‘twist the Scriptures to our own destruction’ as Peter warned; 2 Peter 3:15-17.

Paul knew he could be misunderstood and taken out of context. That’s why, after he explained about justification by ‘faith’, he reiterated fervently that ‘faith’ does not void the Law; “By no means is the Law voided by faith”, says the apostle Paul. He deliberately tells us that ‘we are to uphold, follow, observe, continue in and keep the Law’.

As one of the greatest Scriptural scholars of his day, he knew the Word of God better than anyone. Paul knew that the Law of God given through Moses is forever.

What does the text say?

Genesis 17:9,13 9And God said to Abraham, “As for you, you shall keep my covenant, you and your offspring after you throughout their generations13both he who is born in your house and he who is bought with your money, shall surely be circumcised. So shall my covenant be in your flesh an everlasting covenant.[reaffirmed in Leviticus 12:3]

Exodus 31:12-13, 16 12And the LORD said to Moses, 13“You are to speak to the people of Israel and say, ‘Above all you shall keep my Sabbaths, for this is a sign between me and you throughout your generations, that you may know that I, the LORD, sanctify you… 16Therefore the people of Israel shall keep the Sabbath, observing the Sabbath throughout their generations, as a covenant forever.

Leviticus 23:14 And you shall eat neither bread nor grain parched or fresh until this same day, until you have brought the offering of your God: it is a statute forever throughout your generations in all your dwellings.

Leviticus 23:16, 21 16You shall count fifty days to the day after the seventh Sabbath. Then you shall present a grain offering of new grain to the LORD… 21And you shall make a proclamation on the same day. You shall hold a holy convocation. You shall not do any ordinary work. It is a statute forever in all your dwelling places throughout your generations.

Leviticus 23:26-27a, 31 26And the LORD spoke to Moses, saying, 27“Now on the tenth day of this seventh month is the Day of Atonement…. 31You shall not do any work. It is a statute forever throughout your generations in all your dwelling places.

Deuteronomy 5:29 Oh that they had such a heart as this always, to fear me and to keep all my commandments, that it might go well with them and with their descendants forever!

Deuteronomy 7:9 Know therefore that the LORD your God is God, the faithful God who keeps covenant and steadfast love with those who love him and keep his commandments, to a thousand generations,

Deuteronomy 12:28 Be careful to obey all these words that I command you, that it may go well with you and with your children after you forever, when you do what is good and right in the sight of the LORD your God.

Deuteronomy 12:32 Everything that I command you, you shall be careful to do. You shall not add to it or take from it.

Deuteronomy 29:29 “The secret things belong to the LORD our God, but the things that are revealed belong to us and to our children forever, that we may do all the words of this law.

It doesn’t say, ‘until I send my Son’ or ‘until Paul comes’. It says forever.

Is the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob a liar?

Need I go on?

Psalm 111:7 7The works of his hands are faithful and just; all his precepts are trustworthy; 8they are established forever and ever, to be performed with faithfulness and uprightness.

Psalm 119:142,144 142Your righteousness is righteous forever, and your law is truth 144Your testimonies are righteous forever; give me understanding that I may live.

Psalm 119:151-152 151But you are near, O LORD, and all your commandments are truth. 152Long have I known from your testimonies that you have founded them forever.

Psalm 119:160 The sum of your word is truth, and every one of your righteous rules endures forever.

  • Side note: the last three verses have something else in common. “Your Law is truth”, “your commandments are truth”, “your word is truth”; sound familiar?
    • Sanctify (set-apart) them in the truth; your word is truth”. ~ spoken by the Word of God himself, John 17:17. Please read ‘What is Truth?‘.

Ecclesiastes 12:13 The end of the matter; all has been heard. Fear God and keep his commandments, for this is the whole duty of mankind.

Malachi 3:6For I the LORD do not change;

Matthew 5:18-19a 18For 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. 19Therefore 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.

  • Deuteronomy 30:15-16,19 15See, I have set before you today life and good, death and evil, 16in that I command you today to love the LORD your God, to walk in His ways, and to keep His commandments, His statutes, and His judgments 19I call heaven and earth to witness against you today, that I have set before you life and death, blessing and curse. Therefore choose life, that you and your offspring may live ~

Luke 16:17 But it is easier for heaven and earth to pass away than for one dot of the Law to become void.

  • Romans 3:31 Do we then make void the law through faith? Certainly not! On the contrary, we establish the law.

So here we are, right back where we started, at Romans 3:31.

The Lord GOD specifically used “heaven and earth” as witnesses to the covenantal promises that He made regarding His Teachings and Instructions/Laws. Jesus purposefully referred to these two witnesses in ‘Matthew’ & ‘Luke’ above to emphasize and reaffirm these words; that His Instructions, His Laws, His Words will be valid, current and in effect until heaven and earth have passed away. Take a look outside to verify…

The apostle Paul, clearly and concisely, tells us that the Law of God is not abolished. Paul himself observed and kept the Law of God given through Moses for his entire life. The Holy Spirit inspired James confirms this about Paul, in ‘Acts of the Apostles’.

What does the text say?

Acts 21:24b Thus all will know that there is nothing in what they have been told about you, but that you yourself (Paul) also live in observance of the law.

Please read “Paul’s Day in Court” & “You Yourself Also Live in Observance of the Law

Final thought: Heaven and Earth are still here and there’s still much prophecy to be fulfilled. This ‘heaven and earth’ do not pass away until Revelation Chapter 21 and the last thing to be ‘accomplished’ in Scripture is after that.

This study can now be seen on YouTube @ ‘Paul Commands Us to Uphold the Law‘.

  • For further study of Paul’s teachings, as well as, the original Greek please see the blog posts at the bottom of this page. Be a Berean, and test Paul’s doctrines to the “Scriptures”. Please share this study. Thank you for your time!

(Thus he declared all foods clean) Part 2: Peter’s Vision | Acts 10:13

Acts 10:13 And there came a voice to him: “Rise, Peter; kill and eat.”

In ‘Acts of the Apostles’ chapter 10, Peter was in a ‘trance’ and saw a vision, where different kinds of animals came down in a sheet from Heaven. Then he heard a voice telling him to Rise, kill and eat’, not once but 3 times. However, Peter refused

Acts 10:14, 16 14But Peter said, “By no means, Lord; for I have never eaten anything that is common or unclean.” 16This happened three times, and the thing was taken up at once to heaven.

Straight to His face, Peter said “NO” to God Almighty! He clearly was ‘NOT’ going to eat anything “unclean”!

This next point is critical; the documented fact is, Peter was inwardly perplexed as to the meaning of this vision. After the vision, Peter is confused, he’s baffled as to its meaning…

What does the text say?

Acts 10:17 Now while Peter was inwardly perplexed as to what the vision that he had seen might mean

The verse states he did NOT know the ‘meaning of the vision’! Yet, mainstream theology has cast aside the ‘Apostle Peter’, and interprets the meaning without reading the rest of the discourse? Peter obviously is having issues with an “apparent” change in the Food-Laws. So, shouldn’t we see how all this plays out in the rest of the chapter, before just stopping at verse 13 and ‘(declare all foods are now clean)’? At this point in the discourse, Peter didn’t know what the vision meant… How arrogant is it of us to assume that we could know better than Peter?

From ‘Mark’ 7:19, mainstream theology teaches that Jesus ‘(declared all foods clean)‘; please read ‘(Thus he declared all foods clean) Part 1‘. Wasn’t Peter with Jesus during that event? ‘If’ he learned from the Master Himself, that ‘(all foods had been declared clean)’, WHY would he adamantly claim that he had never eaten anything “unclean” years later, here in ‘Acts’ 10:14? WHY would he be confused about the meaning of the vision if he already knew that Jesus had ‘(declared all foods clean)??? Didn’t Peter get the memo?

Think logically, not emotionally.

This vision takes place years after the ascension of Jesus, and Peter still believes there are “unclean” animals that he cannot eat, that he WILL NOT eat! He still believes the Mosaic food Laws are current and valid!

‘If’ Jesus did (declare all foods clean) in ‘Mark 7’, then Peter is contradicting the Son of God.

If’ ‘Acts 10:14’ contradicts ‘Mark 7:19’ then we have to throw out both Books from the Bible, because Scripture cannot contradict itself.

Today’s mainstream theology teaches that the whole context of Acts 10 is food, and food alone. If you will allow, we will let the Scriptures alone prove that the purpose of the vision has NOTHING to do with food.

What no one is being taught in mainstream churches today is that the interpretation of Peter’s vision is given to us, twice. Right there in the dialogue of chapters 10 and 11, the visions interpretation is given to us, twice; and it has NOTHING to do with food.

What does the text say?

Acts 10:28 And he said to them, “You yourselves know how unlawful it is for a Jew to associate with or to visit anyone of another nation, but God has shown me that I should not call any person common or unclean.

Acts 11:4-18 4But Peter began and explained it to them in order: 5“I was in the city of Joppa praying, and in a trance I saw a vision, something like a great sheet descending, being let down from heaven by its four corners, and it came down to me. 6Looking at it closely, I observed animals and beasts of prey and reptiles and birds of the air. 7And I heard a voice saying to me, ‘Rise, Peter; kill and eat.’ 8But I said, ‘By no means, Lord; for nothing common or unclean has ever entered my mouth.’ 9But the voice answered a second time from heaven, ‘What God has made clean, do not call common.’ 10This happened three times, and all was drawn up again into heaven. 11And behold, at that very moment three men arrived at the house in which we were, sent to me from Caesarea. 12And the Spirit told me to go with them, making no distinction. These six brothers also accompanied me, and we entered the man’s house. 13And he told us how he had seen the angel stand in his house and say, ‘Send to Joppa and bring Simon who is called Peter; 14he will declare to you a message by which you will be saved, you and all your household.’ 15As I began to speak, the Holy Spirit fell on them just as on us at the beginning. 16And I remembered the word of the Lord, how he said, John baptized with water, but you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit.’ 17If then God gave the same gift to them as he gave to us when we believed in the Lord Jesus Christ, who was I that I could stand in God’s way?” 18When they heard these things they fell silent. And they glorified God, saying, “Then to the Gentiles also God has granted repentance that leads to life.

Shouldn’t we just accept the fact that the Holy Spirit of God knew what He was talking about when He told these disciples this ‘Interpretation?

Peter made it very clear that he had NEVER eaten an “unclean” animal, and he had no intention to eat those “unclean” animals in the sheet. He saw that vision three times and “Behold”, a funny thing happened, three men came looking for him; coincidence???

What does the text say?

Acts 10:13-20 13And there came a voice to him: “Rise, Peter; kill and eat.” 14But Peter said, “By no means, Lord; for I have never eaten anything that is common or unclean.” 15And the voice came to him again a second time, “What God has made clean, do not call common.” 16This happened three times, and the thing was taken up at once to heaven. 17Now while Peter was inwardly perplexed as to what the vision that he had seen might mean, behold, the men who were sent by Cornelius, having made inquiry for Simon’s house, stood at the gate 18and called out to ask whether Simon who was called Peter was lodging there. 19And while Peter was pondering the vision, the Spirit said to him, “Behold, three men are looking for you. 20Rise and go down and accompany them without hesitation, for I have sent them.”

After the word “eat” in the vision of verse 13, “food” is never discussed again. Yet, mainstream theology teaches that the whole context of Acts 10 is about food.?.?.

However, after the vision that mentions “unclean”, we see that Peter states ‘God showed’ him something that actually refers to “unclean”…

What does the text say?

Acts 10:28 …but God has shown me that I should not call any person common or unclean.

When Peter finally explains this interpretation of his vision to his brothers in Jerusalem in chapter 11, nothing is mentioned regarding a change in the food Laws, nothing.

Stop and think for second; it would have been FRONT-PAGE news to hear that unclean animals were now considered “food”, if this was the meaning of the vision. So, why is it never mentioned in Acts 10 or 11??? Because that wasn’t the meaning of, or purpose of the vision. The purpose of the vision was to get these 1st Century believers in Jesus to quit following “doctrines of men”.

What does the text say?

Acts 10:28 And he said to them, “You yourselves know how unlawful it is for a Jew to associate with or to visit anyone of another nation, but God has shown me that I should not call any person common or unclean.

Nowhere in the Law of God given through Moses do we find this underlined statement above to be true. This was NOT God’s Law, it was man’s law. This was in the oral law of the day, also known today as the Talmud.

The Talmud makes two claims why the Goim (Gentiles) are considered unclean: because they eat unclean things, and because they themselves have not been cleansed (from original sin) on Mount Sinai.

In ‘Talmud – Schabbath, (145b)’ it says:

  • “Why are the Goim (gentiles) unclean? Because they eat abominable things and animals that crawl on their belly.”

Likewise, in ‘Talmud – Abhodah Zarah, 22b’ it says:

  • “Why are the Goim (gentiles) unclean? Because they were not present at Mount Sinai. For when the serpent entered into Eve he infused her with uncleanness. But the Jews were cleansed from this when they stood on Mount Sinai; the Goim, however, who were not on Mount Sinai were not cleansed.”

It was a “man-made law” that claimed the gentiles were to be called unclean, not God’s Law.

‘Peter’s Vision’ corrects the false Talmudic understanding of the gentile/nations; that the gentiles/nations were unclean, and Jews should therefore not associate with them. The vision showed Peter that man-made law was wrong.

So, one last time here are both references of the interpretation of the vision given to us straight from the Scriptures  ~

Acts 10:28 And he said to them, “You yourselves know how unlawful (Talmudic) it is for a Jew to associate with or to visit anyone of another nation, but God has shown me that I should not call any person common or unclean.

Acts 11:18 When they heard these things they fell silent. And they glorified God, saying, Then to the Gentiles also God has granted repentance that leads to life.”

Hallelu Yah!

As I mentioned in ‘(Thus he declared all foods clean) Part 1’, there has been a HUGE disconnect in the understanding of God’s Law/Instructions ~

Here is the disconnect: we have been taught for centuries that anything you can shove into your mouth is ‘food’, and that in times past, some of it was considered ‘clean-food’ and some of it was considered ‘unclean-food’. That premise is 100% Scripturally wrong! God NEVER said, ‘pig, crab, snake, dog, vulture, etc. were ‘unclean-food’; He said, they were “unclean animals” and “NOT food”! | Leviticus 11.

Mainstream theology has plucked this single sentence of ‘Acts’ 10:13 out from the context of the surrounding verses, to fit denominational dogma.

We are being lied to! Whether it is deliberate or in ignorance, it is still deception.

Final Thought: What many have not considered, is that this vision that the LORD gave Peter, is actually a stern ‘Heavenlyreminder’ to finally initiate the instruction He had already given him ~

What does the text say?

Matthew 28:19 Go therefore and make disciples of all nations

Mark 16:15 And He said to them, “Go into all the world and preach the gospel to all creation.

  • For further study, especially Paul’s teachings, as well as the original Greek, please see the blog posts at the bottom of this page. Be a Berean, and test all doctrines to the “Scriptures”. Please share this study. Thank you for your time!
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