A warning from Peter about interpreting Paul
When one wishes to make a case against keeping some of God’s commandments, Paul is the most quoted author. We’ve already seen that Paul not only taught obedience to the law, but he also obeyed the law himself and taught others to do the same. Was he contradicting himself? I believe Paul was entirely consistent with the Father, Jesus and all the other Biblical writers. Rather, amid instruction regarding false teaching, he is often misunderstood to be saying God’s law was abolished at the cross. This misunderstanding was so prevalent, Peter warned his readers not to twist Paul’s words and be carried away with the error of lawless people.
“And count the patience of our Lord as salvation, just as our beloved brother Paul also wrote to you according to the wisdom given him, as he does in all his letters when he speaks in them of these matters. There are some things in them that are hard to understand, which the ignorant and unstable twist to their own destruction, as they do the other Scriptures. You therefore, beloved, knowing this beforehand, take care that you are not carried away with the error of lawless people and lose your own stability.” (2 Peter 3:15-17)
Let’s heed this warning and make sure we have not twisted Paul’s words. One of the keys is realizing Paul plugged the word ‘law’ into phrases or paragraphs that changed it’s meaning. In fact, it’s easy to show New Testament authors used the word ‘law’ with several intended meanings.