Ten Rules or God’s nature?
It is very important that we recognize that the ten commandments were a type just like all the other laws. This is where the mistake lies. A type is something which represents a greater reality. Here are examples: The Lamb represented Christ, earthly Jerusalem was a type of the heavenly, The Hebrews were a type of the Christian Church, the feast days were a type of the ministry of Christ etc. In every case we can see that the type is far inferior to the reality and while it resembles the reality in some ways, it is by no means equal to it and is not even an accurate representation of it. The ten commandments represented the moral nature of God and while they are a true expression of that nature, they are by no means a full revelation of that nature. They are a type and the type is never equal to the reality.
Look at the Sanctuary as proof of this: Every single item in that sanctuary was a type, an inferior representation of a greater reality; the slain lamb, the high priest, the blood, the altar, the laver, the candlestick, the showbread, the altar of incense, the ark of the covenant, the ceremonial laws, Aaron’s rod, the pot of manna, and the entire sanctuary itself. Thus far we all will agree that everything is type. But then we come to the ten commandments in the ark and suddenly, consistency comes to an end. Suddenly this is not a type, it is the reality. This does not make sense. The ten commandments, like EVERYTHING ELSE in the Sanctuary was a type. They were an illustration of the moral nature of God which is the foundation of all that God is and does.
The ten commandments were designed by God to govern and educate the Hebrews in their carnal state and to give them a basic idea of morality, but it is only a BASIC idea, it was designed to control SINNERS (1 Tim. 1:8,9) and it is by no means comprehensive or complete. God’s nature CANNOT be expressed in ten words. This is why Jesus had to magnify the law and make it honorable. He had to exalt the true standard of righteousness far above what is written on stone and to show us the true nature of God. Therefore He says,
“Ye have heard that it was said by them of old time, Thou shalt not commit adultery: But I say unto you, That whosoever looketh on a woman to lust after her hath committed adultery with her already in his heart.” (Matt 5:27-28)
This and many other statements by Jesus show us that the Ten commandments were not a good enough rule of life to guide us in the way of life that God really wants of Christians. There is much more to what God wants to see in us than simply the observance of ten rules. The ten commandments are a set of prohibitions, “thou shalt not.” The life of God is a positive thing, not negative. God wants us to love others with His love, not simply to stop stealing from them and to stop killing them. He wants us to love our enemies, to turn the other cheek, to submit to being abused and taken advantage of because we love those who abuse us. Where can we find this in the ten commandments? They were a type, and a type is never good enough!
Ten Rules or God’s nature?
So in the reality, God promises to write His laws (the antitype) upon our hearts and minds. This does not mean that He will allow us to remember the ten rules. This does not mean that He will make us love the ten rules, this does not mean that He will cause us to naturally do the ten rules. What it means is that He will place in us by His spirit, the very nature of God. His love is poured out into our hearts by the holy spirit (Rom. 5:5). So now, we behave as God behaves, we operate from the same principle as God because we have been made partakers of the divine nature. We do all things because we love others. Love is the guiding principle and just as a mother who loves her child does not need to be told not to kill him, not to abuse him, to feed him to sympathize with him when he cries, to hurt with him when he falls and cuts his knee, so we, with God’s love in our hearts do not need a written rule to tell us not to steal, or to not kill, or to not lie to, or to not commit adultery with, those whom we love.
The written letter, the limited type has become redundant to us, we have something far better, far greater, we have the reality instead of the type, the spirit and not the letter. This is the more complete understanding of the law.