God’s Law

Exodus 20

The Ten Commandments

1 And God spoke all these words:

2 “I am the LORD your God, who brought you out of Egypt, out of the land of slavery.

3 “You shall have no other gods before [a] me.(Blog Posting: No Other gods)

4 “You shall not make for yourself an idol in the form of anything in heaven above or on the earth beneath or in the waters below. 5 You shall not bow down to them or worship them; for I, the LORD your God, am a jealous God, punishing the children for the sin of the fathers to the third and fourth generation of those who hate me, 6 but showing love to a thousand {generations} of those who love me and keep my commandments.(Blog Posting: No Idols )

7 “You shall not misuse the name of the LORD your God, for the LORD will not hold anyone guiltless who misuses his name.(Blog Posting: Not In Vain )

8 “Remember the Sabbath day by keeping it holy. 9 Six days you shall labor and do all your work, 10 but the seventh day is a Sabbath to the LORD your God. On it you shall not do any work, neither you, nor your son or daughter, nor your manservant or maidservant, nor your animals, nor the alien within your gates. 11 For in six days the LORD made the heavens and the earth, the sea, and all that is in them, but he rested on the seventh day. Therefore the LORD blessed the Sabbath day and made it holy.(Blog Posting: Keep It Holy )

12 “Honor your father and your mother, so that you may live long in the land the LORD your God is giving you.(Blog Posting: Your Father and Your Mother )

13 “You shall not murder.(Blog Posting: No Murder )

14You shall not commit adultery.(Blog Posting: You are Temples )

15You shall not steal.(Blog Posting: Stop! Thief! )

16 “You shall not give false testimony against your neighbor.(Blog Posting: Don’t Lie )

17You shall not covet your neighbor’s house. You shall not covet your neighbor’s wife, or his manservant or maidservant, his ox or donkey, or anything that belongs to your neighbor.” (Blog Posting: Don’t Covet )

Matthew 22:36“Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the Law?” 37Jesus replied: ” ‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’[b] 38This is the first and greatest commandment. 39And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’[c]40All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.”

Matthew Henry Commentary

An interpreter of the law asked our Lord a question, to try, not so much his knowledge, as his judgment. The love of God is the first and great commandment, and the sum of all the commands of the first table. Our love of God must be sincere, not in word and tongue only. All our love is too little to bestow upon him, therefore all the powers of the soul must be engaged for him, and carried out toward him. To love our neighbour as ourselves, is the second great commandment. There is a self-love which is corrupt, and the root of the greatest sins, and it must be put off and mortified; but there is a self-love which is the rule of the greatest duty: we must have a due concern for the welfare of our own souls and bodies. And we must love our neighbour as truly and sincerely as we love ourselves; in many cases we must deny ourselves for the good of others. By these two commandments let our hearts be formed as by a mould.

I posted this to make a point as I reflect on the previous posts expounding on the 10 Commandments.  When Jesus was nearing His day of trial and execution, He told his disciples that people will know that you belong to the Christ because you will have love for one another(John 13:33-35).  And as we see above, Jesus sums up the 10 Commandments to love for God and love of our neighbors.  If you paid any attention to the two tables, the first one dealt with loving God and the second table dealt with loving our neighbors; who are not just those around you but all of mankind.

God gave the commandments to the people Himself, God spoke directly to the people of Israel (Exodus 20:1).  These commandments showed us just how far we are from the holiness God demands of us(Leviticus 19:1-3, 1 Peter 2:9, 1 Thessalonians 4:7, Colossians 3:12). The law God gave to Moses for the people of Israel; the Mosaic Law pointed to the all sufficient Christ to come.  The ceremonial and sacrificial laws are fulfilled in the atonement of sin by Christ.  I would say that the moral law within the Mosaic Law are now fulfilled in the sense that by grace and the power of the Holy Spirit can we truly love our neighbors.   Looking at the other posts I have come to see that it is indeed that Jesus built on these and the Prophets.  The Apostles, used the law and expounded it greatly; you see God gave us His Law which exposed our sin and He gave Moses the Mosaic Law to Israel to prepared them for the Christ.  Now that Christ has come and justified us, God’s Law shows the problem (sin) but Christ gives us the solution to the problem (himself).  The death and resurrection, destroyed the power of sin over us, reconciled us to God through Him righteousness.

God has always intended to redeem the heart’s intent and to make us His people.  With the help of the Holy Spirit we can live as Jesus lived.  Looking at the law alone will burden a man’s heart as we see the commandments as starting at the hearts intent.  The burden is heavy without Christ and the Grace of God.  A true child of God has these laws written on his heart and is taught how to follow them with love and the power of the  presence of the Holy Spirit.

Jeremiah 31

31 “The time is coming,” declares the LORD,
“when I will make a new covenant
with the house of Israel
and with the house of Judah.

32 It will not be like the covenant
I made with their forefathers
when I took them by the hand
to lead them out of Egypt,
because they broke my covenant,
though I was a husband to [d] them, [e]
declares the LORD.

33 “This is the covenant I will make with the house of Israel
after that time,” declares the LORD.
“I will put my law in their minds
and write it on their hearts.
I will be their God,
and they will be my people.

34 No longer will a man teach his neighbor,
or a man his brother, saying, ‘Know the LORD,’
because they will all know me,
from the least of them to the greatest,”
declares the LORD.
“For I will forgive their wickedness
and will remember their sins no more.”

Romans 2

12All who sin apart from the law will also perish apart from the law, and all who sin under the law will be judged by the law. 13For it is not those who hear the law who are righteous in God’s sight, but it is those who obey the law who will be declared righteous. 14(Indeed, when Gentiles, who do not have the law, do by nature things required by the law, they are a law for themselves, even though they do not have the law, 15since they show that the requirements of the law are written on their hearts, their consciences also bearing witness, and their thoughts now accusing, now even defending them.) 16This will take place on the day when God will judge men’s secrets through Jesus Christ, as my gospel declares.

2 Corinthians 3

1Are we beginning to commend ourselves again? Or do we need, like some people, letters of recommendation to you or from you? 2You yourselves are our letter, written on our hearts, known and read by everybody. 3You show that you are a letter from Christ, the result of our ministry, written not with ink but with the Spirit of the living God, not on tablets of stone but on tablets of human hearts.

4Such confidence as this is ours through Christ before God. 5Not that we are competent in ourselves to claim anything for ourselves, but our competence comes from God. 6He has made us competent as ministers of a new covenant—not of the letter but of the Spirit; for the letter kills, but the Spirit gives life.

The Glory of the New Covenant

7Now if the ministry that brought death, which was engraved in letters on stone, came with glory, so that the Israelites could not look steadily at the face of Moses because of its glory, fading though it was, 8will not the ministry of the Spirit be even more glorious? 9If the ministry that condemns men is glorious, how much more glorious is the ministry that brings righteousness! 10For what was glorious has no glory now in comparison with the surpassing glory. 11And if what was fading away came with glory, how much greater is the glory of that which lasts!12Therefore, since we have such a hope, we are very bold. 13We are not like Moses, who would put a veil over his face to keep the Israelites from gazing at it while the radiance was fading away. 14But their minds were made dull, for to this day the same veil remains when the old covenant is read. It has not been removed, because only in Christ is it taken away. 15Even to this day when Moses is read, a veil covers their hearts. 16But whenever anyone turns to the Lord, the veil is taken away. 17Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom. 18And we, who with unveiled faces all reflect[a] the Lord’s glory, are being transformed into his likeness with ever-increasing glory, which comes from the Lord, who is the Spirit.

To the saved and adopted; it is not a burden to “Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.” Nor is it a burden to ‘Love your neighbor as yourself. It amazes me to read and study Deuteronomy and see this so clearly.  To see in the Mosaic Law that we are to love our neighbor.  The scriptures say: “how can we say that we love God and hate our brother? If you hate your brother you can’t love God and you are a liar” (1 John 4:19-21).  The new testament has a solid foundation in the 10 commandments and the words of the prophets.

This is not about rule keeping, as you can keep rules without any conviction of the heart.  This is about seeing God’s holiness and seeing that on your own you could never satisfy God’s demand of holiness.  Especially, when you examine the commandments for the view God has which is the inclination of the heart and not external rule keeping.  When you see it, it will drive you to your knees but God presents a hope! Jesus Christ as our redeemer and our Lord who justifies.  Not only that but we have a advocate the Holy Spirit who stands with us and it through Him do we live out our salvation.  It is by the Holy Spirit are we conformed to Christ image and become God’s imitators (Ephesians 5:1).   Then and only then can we hope to meet God’s demands of holiness.

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