What Was REALLY Nailed To The Cross?

Colossians 2:14 is one of the most familiar scriptures quoted by Christians who believe that we are free from observing God’s laws. They claim that since God’s laws were already nailed to the cross, we now have the freedom to do whatever we want as long as we believe in God. However, did Paul really teach that we should break God’s law rather than keep them? Did Paul’s written words in Colossians 2:14 tells us that we are now free in doing whatever we want?

In this blog post, let us go through the scriptures and discover what Paul means with what he said and let’s find out what was really nailed to the cross.

I beseech you to have an open mind as we examine this crucial topic.

What Was REALLY Nailed To The Cross

Let’s establish first some facts

First, let us take read Colossians 2:14.

“Having wiped out the handwriting of requirements that was against us, which was contrary to us. And He has taken it out of the way, having nailed it to the cross.”

Before we answer the question of the day, let us first establish some facts. When studying the Bible, it is important to first look into clear scriptures, rather than starting with obscure scriptures and create a major doctrine out of them. We need to look into the scriptures that are clear to build a solid ground.

For this reason, we need to look into the scriptures that are clear to build a solid ground.

It is important to establish that fact that Paul is NOT against the holy laws of God. We read the following:

  • Rom 7:12 “Wherefore the law is HOLY, and the commandment holy, and just, and good.
  • Rom 3:31 “Do we then make void the law through faith? God forbid: yea, we ESTABLISH the law.”
  • Rom 2:13 “For not the hearers of the law are just before God, but the DOERS OF THE LAW shall be justified.”

Based on these verses, we can see that Paul is NOT the champion of doing away of God’s law as many people suggest. In contrary, Paul repeatedly says that following God’s commandments are still needed and the focal point of our Christian lives.

Therefore, if some things may seem to tell us that God’s law is obsolete, then we can be sure that this is NOT THE CASE as we know that the scripture cannot be broken (John 10:35).

Examining Colossians 2:14

“Having wiped out the handwriting of requirements that was against us, which was contrary to us. And He has taken it out of the way, having nailed it to the cross.”

Let us read again Colossians 2:14.

“Having wiped out the handwriting of requirements that was against us, which was contrary to us. And He has taken it out of the way, having nailed it to the cross.”

At first look, this particular verse seems to support the widespread belief that Jesus’ death got rid of His Father’s law. Nevertheless, let us not jump to any conclusion yet.

Notice, what was Paul referring to when he said, “Which was contrary to us?” If Paul was referring to God’s law, as some may believe, then we have a problem.

We need to ask, “Is God’s law “against us”? The answer is a resounding, NO! In fact, Paul, himself, said that the Law of the Lord is “holy, and just, and good,” as we read earlier.

Also, we read in Psalms 19:7-11 how King David praised God’s law; calling it PERFECT, SURE, RIGHT, PURE, clean, ENDURING FOREVER, RIGHTEOUS, PRECIOUS than gold, and SWEETER THAN HONEY. Absolutely, these words used by David to describe God’s law makes it clear that it can never be something that is against us.

What does the “handwriting of requirements” mean?

In the original Greek manuscript, the handwriting of requirements is translated from cheriographon tois dogmasin. According to Friberg Lexicon, it means “a strict handwritten document which is used in legal matters as a promissory note, record of indebtedness, bond.”

In short, the handwriting of requirements is the RECORD OF OUR CHARGES or the RECORD OF OUR SIN.

This is very clear in other Bible translation. Please read.

  • “He canceled the record that contained the charges against us. He took it and destroyed it by nailing it to Christ’s cross.”  (New Living Translation)
  • “Christ has utterly wiped out the damning evidence of broken laws and commandments which always hung over our heads, and has completely annulled it by nailing it over his own head on the cross.” (New Testament in Modern English)
  • “God wiped out the charges that were against us for disobeying the Law of Moses. He took them away and nailed them to the cross.” (Contemporary English Translation)

Physically, what was nailed to the cross?

Two things had been nailed to the cross, Jesus Christ and the sign put above His head which talks about the accusation to Jesus Christ. Notice in Matthew 27:37, it has some parallelism to Colossians 2:14.

“And they put up over His head the ACCUSATION WRITTEN AGAINST HIM: THIS IS JESUS THE KING OF THE JEWS.”

Thus, we can see that the accusation to Jesus was also nailed to the cross. Paul figuratively tells us that the ACCUSATION or RECORD of SIN has also been nailed to the cross!

Conclusion

With these passages and explanation, we, therefore, conclude that the RECORD OF SIN, not the law, was nailed to the cross. Jesus Christ’s death blot out our sin and not His father’s law. Won’t it be a rebellious act of Jesus if He got rid of the Law of His Father? Thankfully, He did not.

So the next time someone tells you that we don’t have to observe the Ten Commandments and other statutes of God and supporting that claim with Colossians 2:14, then you already know the answer. I know this is a vital topic that needs further study. So I recommend that you request your free copy of The New Covenant: Does It Abolish God’s Law?

Jesus died for us and made the Grace of God available. When we are forgiven of our sin through God’s grace, it does not give us a license to go out there and break God’s commandments AGAIN. We are expected to change and live a life according to God’s will and commandments.


Recommended book: A History of God: The 4,000-Year Quest of Judaism, Christianity and Islam

Author: Karen Armstrong

Rating: 4.25 out of 5 stars (500+ reviews)

Description:

A History of God

In this stunningly intelligent book, Karen Armstrong, one of Britain’s foremost commentators on religious affairs, traces the history of how men and women have perceived and experienced God, from the time of Abraham to the present. From classical philosophy and medieval mysticism to the Reformation, the Enlightenment, and the modern age of skepticism, Karen Armstrong performs the near miracle of distilling the intellectual history of monotheism into one superbly readable volume, destined to take its place as a classic. (Grab your copy here.)


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7 thoughts on “What Was REALLY Nailed To The Cross?

  1. Pingback: 8 Ways Jesus is Frequently Misquoted By Christians (Shocking) | Christian Living 101

  2. You are right and wrong. Grace (God’s Favor through Jesus) is not a license to sin, it is freedom to not sin. The Law (ten commandments) is for the lawless, to bring them to Jesus. But as Believers we no longer have to look to the Law to obey it. We look to the Law of Love, which Jesus stated a new commandment I give you. Love your neighbor as I have Loved You. This is all encompassing, follow the Law of Love and the Law isn’t broken. Under God’s Grace/Favor I don’t have to be told to Love God, not to steal etc… The focus has changed from our actions/The Law to His Love for us. We Love God, because He first Loved us. Think of the governmental laws. It is against the law to steal, correct? How many times a day do you think about that law? If you’re a law abiding citizen, then you don’t give it any thought. If you’re an active thief then it is a constant thought. Paul explains this next part The Law is Pure and Good, but in Romans he explains that the Law gives occasion(opportunity) to the Law of sin and death. Because the Law has no redemptive power. A speed limit sign has no power to stop me from speeding. But if cars were manufactured to go only the speed limit, there would be no need for the speed limit signs. In Jesus, we have been re-manufactured to not sin, when we renew our minds and align ourselves with His Thoughts. When we use God’s Favor in Jesus apropriately. This is why Paul stated to not have vain discussions about the Law.

    Here’s one last way to think about it. There’s two signs: one says “Under The Law” the other says Jesus/God’s Grace. We as believers are above the Law, so put the sign underneath you that says “under the Law”. Put the sign that says Jesus/God’s Grace, now look up, what do you see, exactly Jesus! Now, since your focus is the Ten Commandments take the sign that says “under the Law” and place that sign directly above you. Now, look up! You just blocked Jesus who is God’s Favor to us. You get what you focus on.

    Those of us, who have truly, truly been dragged down, by the law of sin and death. Know that our only hope is God’s Favor that we have only through Jesus. Because I cannot obey the law, without God’s Favor. With God’s favor, guess what…………alcohol gone……stealing gone……sleeping around gone……..drugs gone….lying gone…………..all of it gone, don’t do it, nor do I need any of it and it wasn’t me that changed me…..it was Jesus. So you can wave the Ten Commandments around all you want, The Law did what it was supposed to do, deliver me to the one who earned Our Favor with God…….Jesus: then He changed me, with little effort or striving on my part! Did I mention that I was an atheist? Now I Love Father, Jesus and Holy Spirit, because they first loved me!

    Have a blessed night!

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    • Hi Tnttony777,

      Thanks for stopping by and having the time to post a comment. 🙂

      First of all, let me tell you that the “new” commandment Jesus gave is quoted from the OT. The statement of Jesus in John 13:34 is quoted from Lev. 19:18. What makes the commandment Jesus gave “new” is the “as I have loved you” part.

      I hope you don’t forget what John said in I John 5:3, “For this is the LOVE OF GOD, that we KEEP His COMMANDMENTS. And His commandments are NOT BURDENSOME.”

      So basically, if you really love Jesus and God, you need to keep their commandments (John 14:21). Whether you admit it or not, you keep the commandments of God by not stealing, coveting, etc. and I am happy about that. 🙂

      However, we need to keep the commandments of God and not just picking which one is convenient. God expects us to keep the Sabbath which I believe is the most ignored part of the TC.

      As much as I want to address other parts of your comments, I am sure I made my point very clear with my post. 🙂 If you want to learn more, I would highly recommend you request the free booklet I mentioned in my blog.

      Like

      • We are to “rest” in Jesus 24/7. That is the New way to keep the Sabbath. I won’t debate, evidently you need to stay under the Law for awhile. Did you not read where I do none of those things, nor am I tempted to! I clearly state that Grace isn’t freedom to sin, it’s freedom not to! I don’t have to focus on The Law as I clearly showed. No thanks on the booklet. Many Blessings!

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  3. Hmm… I wonder where in the scripture you can read that. Let us not assume things, but let the Bible speaks of itself. 🙂

    Anyway, thank you for your time. Let us both pray for God’s will to be done in our lives. That’s the best thing to do. God bless you as well!

    Like

  4. Pingback: The 5 Most Important Keys to Happiness According to Your Bible – Becoming Christians

  5. Pingback: 5 Compelling Reasons You Should Also Observe God’s Food Law | Becoming Christians

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