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Chris (email link at the bottom of each page)

To Fulfil the Law

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Matthew 5:17–19
 
Jesus proclaimed that he had come not to abolish the law but to fulfil it.  It was to Israel that God gave the law and his great promises and God remains faithful to his chosen people.  The old law was superseded, not because it was wrong but because it was inadequate to bring people to salvation.
 
Elements of the Jewish law remain in place, such as the Ten Commandments, but there are also elements that are now obsolete, such as sacrifices, the idea of legal impurity.
 
But the main problem with God’s law is the inability of sinful humans to keep it, so we shall always be condemned by it.  Paul said, “if it had not been for the law I should not have known sin . . . I delight lin the law of God, in my inmost self, but I see in my members another law at war with the law of my mind and making me captive to the law of sin which dwells in my mmebers” (Romans 7:7, 22–23).
 
God has set us free from this dilemma.  Christ has freed us from our sins on the cross, and we are now put right with God, not by keeping the law but by faith in Christ. “There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus.  For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has set me free from the law of sin and death” (Romans 8:1–2).
 
This does not mean that we are not to observe the law: he sets us free so that we can keep it, with the help of the Spirit.  When we fail, we know that we can repent and be forgiven.
 
We are also called to teach this law and to communciate it to others, in an appealing way.  The law is not a burden or restriction on our freedom – it is the road to life and joy.  Jesus calls us to be perfect as our heavenly Father is perfect.  And if we rely on the power of God’s Spirit we will find that we can do what we could not do alone, for “with God all things are possible” (Matthew 19:26).
 
Lord Jesus, we thank you that you have set us free from the law of sin and death and poured out your Spirit upon us.  Give us the grace to live life in the Spirit, so that we might fulfil your commands and lead others to know you.
 
Chris
 
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