So did Peter. Look at Acts 15:10 – 11. As you know this is after Paul and Barnabas’ first missionary journey. Many gentiles have come to faith. There is a debate in Jerusalem about whether they should be required to follow the Law and be circumcised.
In the midst of this debate Peter arises and says, “why…place a yoke upon their neck which neither our father nor we have been able to bear?” The Law, the religion of the Jews, even though given by God, did not – well they could not follow it. Fact is, that is the case with any set of rules, religion, they cannot be followed. Quick simple example, all sports have rules. All sports have referees to penalize the players, when, not if, the rules are broken. People, us, we, are not really good at keeping rules, laws, commandments. So the notion that we can follow some sort of structure that will get us in good graces with God is essentially a non-starter. To translate that into Texan, “That dog won’t hunt.”
As a matter of fact, God knew that when He gave Israel the Law in the first place. Galatians 3:18 – 29 outlines this for us. The purpose of the Law was not to make Israel “right” with God, it was to reveal to them that they could not follow it. To show them that they needed a redeemer, a messiah, to lead them to faith in the Messiah.
That is what the person I was talking to did not understand. Frankly, it is what a lot of people do not understand about Christianity. Christianity is not a yoke of rules and processes to follow. It dispenses with all of that through a personal relationship with Christ through faith. We acknowledge our helplessness to follow the rules, essentially we agree that we miss the mark, which is what the Greek word for sin means. So we accept that Christ paid the price for us missing the mark and trust Him to make us right through relationship with Him to the Father.
It is that simple. We cannot bear the yoke. We have to trust Christ.