Works righteousness is man’s default religion

13 But go and learn what is the meaning of this; I desire mercy and not sacrifice, for I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners. Matthew 9:13 (translated from the NA28 Greek text)

Works righteousness is man’s default religion. The Jews mostly misunderstood the Old Testament sacrificial system. The point of the sacrifice was the taking away of sin and the pointing to the perfect sacrifice that would come in Christ, but most had turned it into a form of works righteousness.

In Matthew 9:13 (above) our Lord Jesus quotes Hosea 6:6.

6 For I delight in lovingkindness rather than sacrifice, And in the knowledge of God rather than burnt offerings. Hosea 6:6 (LSB) 

In this, our Lord was showing that the outward ritual of sacrifice apart from inward fulfillment of the Mosaic system, which is that Christ’s blood, was the blood of the new covenant.

27 And when He had taken a cup and given thanks, He gave it to them, saying, “Drink from it, all of you; 28 for this is My blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many for forgiveness of sins. Matthew 26:27-28 (LSB)

Despite what so many hyper-dispensationalists teach, the book of Acts and early church history confirms that the sacrificial system was no longer necessary and was abandoned. The emphasis in the New Testament is that Christ’s sacrifice was the perfect sacrifice, the only one that could be the propitiation, the complete taking away, of our sin (Romans 3:23-25). View article →


Reposted from December 2017