Correspondence: 1CO 9:27; MAR 4:26-29; 1PE 2:8; 2CO 5:16; EPH 2:14; LEV 27:26 . .

 •  3 min. read  •  grade level: 6
Ans. Not for the sake of asceticism. But we must beware lest in condemning all self-imposed bodily mortifications, we give the reins on the other hand to a love of ease and self-indulgence. There is a middle path, and this Paul trod, careful while preaching to others to keep the reins well over himself in everything, not as a meritorious action, but as an approved minister of the gospel.
Ans. Mark 4:26-2926And he said, So is the kingdom of God, as if a man should cast seed into the ground; 27And should sleep, and rise night and day, and the seed should spring and grow up, he knoweth not how. 28For the earth bringeth forth fruit of herself; first the blade, then the ear, after that the full corn in the ear. 29But when the fruit is brought forth, immediately he putteth in the sickle, because the harvest is come. (Mark 4:26‑29), compares the kingdom of God "unto a man that casts seed into the ground who rising and sleeping day and night, allows it to increase without taking any notice of it. The earth produces thus fruit of itself, first the blade, then the ear, and then the full grain in the ear. Now when the fruit is ripe, the sickle is put in at once, because the harvest is come. Thus the Lord worked personally, sowing the Word of God upon earth; and at the end, He will return, and work again in person, when the time for the judgment of this world shall have come, but now, in the meantime, He remains seated at the right hand of God, as though He did not occupy Himself with His field, although in secret He does work by His grace, and produces everything. But it is not manifest. Without being seen, He works to make the seed grow in a divine way, by His grace, while apparently He allows the gospel to grow, without having anything to do with it, until the harvest. Then He will appear and will Himself work openly." (J. N. D. Col. Writ.)
Ans. This, as in Jude 44For there are certain men crept in unawares, who were before of old ordained to this condemnation, ungodly men, turning the grace of our God into lasciviousness, and denying the only Lord God, and our Lord Jesus Christ. (Jude 4), does not mean that they were appointed to sin or condemnation, but points out the special character of sin and of condemnation that they should fall into. The emphasis in Jude is on the word "this." "Who were before of old ordained to this condemnation.”
Ans. It means that the Christian is brought into a new sphere, and new relationships by the death and resurrection of Christ. The apostles had known Christ as the Messiah after the flesh. But He had died, and now in resurrection they know Him in His new character as head of the new creation and of the Church. Their links also with Christians were all formed on this new and heavenly ground.
Ans. The legal ceremonies and ordinances that fenced the Jew off from the Gentile, thus forming a partition wall between them.
Ans. In Leviticus under the law, inasmuch as the first-born belonged to God by redemption (Ex. 13:22Sanctify unto me all the firstborn, whatsoever openeth the womb among the children of Israel, both of man and of beast: it is mine. (Exodus 13:2)), it could not be set apart to God as a freewill offering, being already His. In Romans, however, under grace, the exact converse holds good; for although we are God's property by redemption, we are told to yield ourselves unto God. Thus "of His own, have we given Him," and in grace God receives this. The comparison of the two passages throws an interesting light on one of the many contrasts between law and grace.