[Gal 3:24-26 KJV] 24 Wherefore the law was our schoolmaster [to bring us] unto [the Messiah], that we might be justified by faith. 25 But after that faith is come, we are no longer under a schoolmaster. 26 For ye are all the children of God by faith in [the Messiah] [Yeshua].

The fact that we, as believers in Yeshua, are no longer “under” the schoolmaster of Torah/instruction does not mean that Torah no longer exists, or that it doesn’t need to be followed. It simply means that once we learn the schoolmaster’s lesson and we know it by heart, we no longer require the physical lesson to direct us to do what’s right. Once we know it in our heart, we automatically “fulfill” it without being told what we need to do. But the schoolmaster’s lesson is still valid, and is always going to be there telling us what the right thing is to do.

In essence, Paul is saying we are children of God by faith in Yeshua, not in our ancestry, as Jews maintain. And the more we follow Yeshua by faith, the less we will need the shoolmaster (Torah), not because it is no longer valid, but because when we are following Yeshua we are obeying Torah! The more we follow Yeshua and obey Torah from the heart, the less Torah (the schoolmaster) will be needed to outwardly guide us.

Let’s look at it from another perspective: when you’re doing what’s right from the heart, you are not breaking Torah, therefore you are not considered “under” Torah. Why? Because Torah is not making you do what’s right, and it cannot penalize you because your heart is right and now you are no longer violating the Torah. You are now free from the penalty of Torah, but it is only because you are now living in accord with it!

But it’s a process; learning to obey Torah from the heart takes one step at a time. Once your heart is right in one thing, and Torah has nothing else to add, its purpose as a “schoolmaster” in that area of your life is complete. You have graduated from that “class”!

However, just like our institutions of higher learning, once you graduate a class or a grade in school, the school doesn’t suddenly go away! In a similar way, when you follow Yeshua and abide by his spirit, you are operating at a higher level than Torah alone can make you perform, but Torah never goes away. It is still there for all of the other things that you may be continuing to do that are not 100% from the heart yet, and for all the other students in the world that haven’t come to faith in Yeshua yet. Ultimately, that is the place where God wants all people everywhere to be: doing what’s right (i.e., obeying his Torah, his instruction) from the heart.

From the opposite perspective, if you are following Torah but NOT doing it from the heart, then you are simply being legalistic and hypocritical because your heart is not right. This is what Yeshua constantly railed against the religious leaders for, because they thought that following the “letter” of Torah would save them. That is also as unacceptable to God as not following Torah at all.

[Luk 16:15 KJV] 15 And he said unto them [the Pharisees], Ye are they which justify yourselves before men; but God knoweth your hearts: for that which is highly esteemed among men [i.e., outward observance of Torah for show] is abomination in the sight of God.
[Mat 15:8 KJV] 8 This people draweth nigh unto me with their mouth, and honoureth me with [their] lips; but their heart is far from me.

Even Paul taught it is not the letter of Torah, but the spirit of Torah that God is concerned with:

[Rom 7:6 KJV] 6 But now we are delivered from the law, that being dead wherein we were held; that we should serve in newness of spirit, and not [in] the oldness of the letter.
[2 Cor 3:6 KJV] 6 Who also hath made us able ministers of the new testament; not of the letter, but of the spirit: for the letter killeth, but the spirit giveth life.

IMG_3571As a worldly example from driving, why is it that we stop at a stop sign when no one else is around? It’s because we know it’s “the law”, i.e., the right thing to do. Additionally, we cannot be penalized because we are obeying the law. The fact that we stop at a stop sign and obey it does not mean the stop sign then ceases to exist, or is no longer needed. It remains in place to be a life-saving direction, a reminder to us of the appropriate action needed next time we come to that intersection (if we happen to forget), and an enforceable command for all.

As long as one person in the world does not know the One true God and his son Yeshua the Messiah, or as long as any of us are still “working out our salvation” one step at a time, Torah will continue to exist to be the schoolmaster and point the way to living by faith in Yeshua.

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