First of all, it matters not what people say if the Bible doesn’t support what they say. In this case, the Bible DOES support those “who say we are under grace not the law.” Romans 6:14 says “For sin shall not have dominion over you: for ye are not under the law, but under grace.” This is clear so now we can proceed to your question, “What does this exactly mean?”

To really understand this we need to know what it was to be “under the law.” When Moses and the Israelites came to Mount Sinai God told them in Exodus 19:5, “Now therefore, if ye will obey My voice indeed, and keep my covenant, then ye shall be a peculiar treasure unto Me above all people.” The people responded in verse 8 with these words, “All that the LORD hath spoken we will do.” After that Moses ascended Mount Sinai to receive the covenant known as the “Ten Commandments” and when he came down and delivered the law to them, they repeated their promise in Exodus 24:3, “All the words which the LORD hath said will we do.” Up until this time Israel had NOT been “under law”; they were being led through the wilderness and blessed by God UNCONDITIONALLY. But as soon as they received the law and promised to obey it, they were “under law,” which means there were now CONDITIONS they had to meet in order to receive blessings from God. God promised to bless them if they obeyed the law, and He told them they would be cursed if they disobeyed. Did they obey the Ten Commandments? NO! Time and time again they broke the law and were judged by God for their disobedience. They had to learn the solemn truth that because of their sinful hearts they were unable to keep the law and that the law only exposed their sin and condemned them. Romans 3:19-20 is a commentary on this, for it reads “Now we know that what things soever the law saith, it saith to them who are under the law: that every mouth may be stopped, and all the world may become guilty before God. Therefore by the deeds of the law there shall no flesh be justified in His sight: for by the law is the knowledge of sin.”

Now let’s consider what it is to be “under grace.” John 1:17 declares, “For the law was given by Moses, but grace and truth came by Jesus Christ.” The Lord Jesus came so that men could be put “under grace.” As we saw, the law promised to bless men if they kept the law but it ended up condemning them because THEY COULDN’T KEEP IT. Jesus came to take man’s place at the cross and to bear the judgment that their sins deserved. By doing so He would deliver men from the penalty of the law and also give them the power to obey God. Romans 8:3-4 tells us “For what the law could not do in that it was weak through the flesh, God did by sending His own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, on account of sin: He condemned sin in the flesh, that the righteous requirement of the law might be fulfilled in us who do not walk according to flesh but according to Spirit.” This is what grace, which means “the unmerited favor of God,” has accomplished! Sin has been condemned in Christ dying for sin! The believer in Christ is no longer condemned and he can now obey what the law required because he has the power of the Holy Spirit to enable him to do so. This, my dear friend, is what GRACE has done for us. To be “under grace” is to accept what Christ has done for us and to live in the power of that truth! Instead of waking up each morning and saying, “I must obey the Ten Commandments and then I’ll be blessed by God,” we should say, “Christ loved me and gave Himself for me, I AM BLESSED, and now I can walk in obedience to Him by the power of the Spirit of God.” This is PURE GRACE! UNDER LAW God was commanding men to obey Him and condemning them if they didn’t; UNDER GRACE God demands nothing from men; He blesses them with salvation through His Son and then encourages them to respond to His love and grace by walking in the power of the Holy Spirit. Are you “under law,” or “under grace?”  (180.10)  (DO)