Monday, January 6, 2014

Cancel the Law?

"Do not think that I have come to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I have not come to abolish them but to fulfill them.   Truly I tell you, until heaven and earth disappear, not the smallest letter, not the least stroke of a pen, will by any means disappear from the Law until everything is accomplished."  Matthew 5:17-18

I have heard it said in my life, "That is the Old Testament.  It doesn't really apply now since Jesus came."  or "Jesus is all about love and acceptance and not the law."  While I agree Jesus is all about love, the above passage makes it clear to me that the law is not gone.

I think the problem really comes when we're trying to excuse our poor behavior and/or judge others for theirs.  I believe I am responsible for my own behavior.  I am not focused on the law or trying to meet all the laws adopted by the Pharisees.  In response to being asked which was the greatest commandment, Jesus said,  “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’[c]38 This is the first and greatest commandment.39 And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’[d] 40 All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.  Matthew 22: 37-40 (NIV)

If we really do this--love God and love others, the law falls into place.  We will not intentionally be breaking the law if we are focused on love.  Real love. Check out 1 Corinthians 13 for a definition.  I know when I look at 1 Corinthians, I fall short.  I am not patient, kind, etc. 100% of the time.  There are many times I find myself self-serving.  So, what I need to do is spend my focus on myself and making the necessary changes.  I am so glad Jesus came and provided grace and mercy.  Boy, do I need those.

On the other side of things, I don't need to be judging others.  I should just speak the truth and then act in love.  God is the judge, not me.

What do you think the above passage means when it says Jesus "has not come to abolish the Law or Prophets, but to fulfill them"?

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