Jesus and the Law

Matthew 5:17-20

“Do not think that I have come to abolish the law or the prophets. I have not come to abolish these things but to fulfill them. 18  I tell you the truth, until heaven and earth pass away not the smallest letter or stroke of a letter will pass from the law until everything takes place. 19  So anyone who breaks one of the least of these commands and teaches others to do so will be called least in the kingdom of heaven, but whoever obeys them and teaches others to do so will be called great in the kingdom of heaven. 20  For I tell you, unless your righteousness goes beyond that of the experts in the law and the Pharisees, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven.

Jesus did not come to abolish the law, He came to fulfill it.  This is something that many get confused over.  In the days of Moses there were sacrificial laws, civil laws, and moral laws.  For todays lesson I want to touch up a little on these, but put more of a focus on moral laws. 

When Jesus died on the cross He fulfilled all requirements of mankind for sacrifices by becoming our perfect sacrificial lamb.  This being stated, this is the reason why Christians today do not go out sacrificing animals for the Lord anymore. Our sacrifices now come from our hearts and minds.

The second type of law I will write about is civil law.  As many years have come and passed, our society as a whole has changed.  We no longer stone someone for committing a crime or cut their hand off, however, the spirit of the law is still adhered to.  In legal terms, the people who commit offenses still get punished.  They go to jail or have some sort of other punishment that fits their crimes.

The law I find most important and really want to speak to everyone today about is moral law.  These are the original 10 commandments given to Moses by God and were never to be broken.  These moral laws show the character of our God and are a timeless guide for all of us to follow in our way of conduct.

Exodus 20:1-17

God spoke all these words:

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

3  “You shall have no other gods before me.

4  “You shall not make for yourself a carved image or any likeness of anything that is in heaven above or that is on the earth beneath or that is in the water below.

5  You shall not bow down to them or serve them, for I, the LORD, your God, am a jealous God, responding to the transgression of fathers by dealing with children to the third and fourth generations of those who reject me,

a 6  and showing covenant faithfulness to a thousand generations of those who love me and keep my commandments.

7  “You shall not take the name of the LORD your God in vain, for the LORD will not hold guiltless anyone who takes his name in vain.

8  “Remember the Sabbath day to set it apart as holy.

9  For six days you may 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, you, or your son, or your daughter, or your male servant, or your female servant, or your cattle, or the resident foreigner who is in your gates.

11  For in six days the LORD made the heavens and the earth and the sea and all that is in them, and he rested on the seventh day; therefore the LORD blessed the Sabbath day and set it apart as holy.

12  “Honor your father and your mother, that you may live a long time in the land the LORD your God is giving to you.

13  “You shall not murder.

14  “You shall not commit adultery.

15  “You shall not steal.

16  “You shall not give false testimony against your neighbor. 

17  “You shall not covet your neighbor’s house. You shall not covet your neighbor’s wife, nor his male servant, nor his female servant, nor his ox, nor his donkey, nor anything that belongs to your neighbor.”

When Jesus was teaching about the law, this is was what He was getting at in verse 19 “So anyone who breaks one of the least of these commands and teaches others to do so will be called least in the kingdom of heaven, but whoever obeys them and teaches others to do so will be called great in the kingdom of heaven.”  

In our society today we tend to turn a blind eye to those who “are not that bad” or we tell ourselves we are “good enough.” When we do these things we need to understand that we are called the least in the kingdom of heaven!  One simple example I can provide you all is how we switched the Sabbath day that the Lord said to keep holy to Sunday making it “the Lord’s day.”  There is no scripture that backs up this type of change because everything our Heavenly Father says is concrete and not fluid.  When God said “keep my Sabbath day holy,” He means just that.  In seminary school I learned a lot about church history and why this change was made, however, it was not biblical and it goes against the scriptures. If you want to learn more about this change, please email me directly.

We sometimes let the world or society make changes that are small and we just don’t stand up for what is right.  Over time it becomes the new normal.  However, this new normal is not correct and we need to understand this.  The Sabbath was my first of two examples that I wanted to share with you all today. 

Another example I can provide today is how much sex and nudity there is in our society and how it is shown in front of our children as normal.  If we do not teach them what is right or wrong who will?  I don’t know about you but everything on television today is very sexual in nature and there is even homosexual characters in our children’s cartoon shows that they watch.  This goes against committing adultery.  Jesus teaches in Matthew 5:27-28 “You have heard that it was said, ‘Do not commit adultery.’ 28  But I say to you that whoever looks at a woman to desire her has already committed adultery with her in his heart.” However, having nudity and sexual references is everywhere on television and even the books we read.  What can we do about this?  The answer is simple, stop watching them.  

People tend to turn a blind eye because they rather follow others instead of reading the scriptures themselves and asking the Holy Spirit to guide them.  These things pushes us farther away from who we are meant to be.  I do not know about you, but I want to be called “the most in the kingdom of heaven.” Simply not knowing is not an acceptable excuse when we finally meet our maker.  When we do not hold ourselves accountable for these type of things, how can we expect to hold others accountable?

No one said that being Christian would be easy.  We must read and follow the scriptures to help us fight our sins of the flesh and the sins of the world to be who God wants us all to be.  Being Christ-like is a form of action, not just standing still.  So please stay strong my brothers and sisters because we are not of this world.  God has given us the tools and capabilities to do what is righteous in His eyes and it only takes our courage, commitment, and integrity to accomplish this mission.  I pray that everyone has a blessed day!

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