Jesus came to earth, as God prophets foretold centuries before His coming, in the form of a tiny, helpless baby to parents who loved God and each other. God chose well. Jesus grew up in the church, learning The Law as did other Jewish boys. But Jesus was God in the flesh, the Word, the One and Only who could explain The Law. From a heart of love, He obeyed his earthly parents, knowing that He would someday be their Savior. On the path to being the Savior to the world, Jesus made The Law complete by explaining the original intent of God.
Yes, Jesus, sent by God, had a higher calling and a very specific mission. He knew His purpose for coming. He knew God’s Plan for He was there at the creation of this plan. Being all human and all God, He listened to God for direction in fulfilling this purpose.
Jesus taught that God’s love was the foundation of God’s Law. That was somehow missed or put aside over centuries. God’s people had lost their ability to love God and relegated themselves to simple obligatory obedience (or not) of His law. Religious, not relational, men decided to create addendums to God’s Law that eliminated God and His intent, replacing Him with man’s idea of selfishly rising above people in power and might. It was an “I win, you lose” situation. This was getting it all wrong. God’s Law was meant to protect people because of God’s love for His created.
A great example of Jesus telling “an expert” of God’s Law what was most important is found in Luke 10:25-28;
“On one occasion an expert in the law stood up to test Jesus. “Teacher,” he asked, “what must I do to inherit eternal life?”
“What is written in the Law?” he replied. “How do you read it?”
He answered, “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind’; and, ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’”
“You have answered correctly,” Jesus replied. “Do this and you will live.”
What if Jesus asked us, “how do you read it?”
What do we understand about God’s Word to us?
Is it just a list of do’s and don’t’s that we try to obey so we can be good enough to get to heaven?
Jesus helps this expert and others around him try to get it right: Love God. Love Others. Jesus lived The Law as He fulfilled God’s Law. The sermon on the mount proclaimed the foundation of God’s Law as love with a gospel of peace.
God gave Jesus the right words at the right time about the original intent of God’s Law to His children. God did not send Jesus to change The Law, but to change hearts and minds so people understood enough to get it right…and be righteous in obeying The Law because of their love for God and Others.
“His Law is love and His gospel is peace.” Let’s get it right.
Matthew 5, NIV
(Part 3-The Sermon)
The Fulfillment of the Law
17 “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. 18 For 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. 19 Therefore anyone who sets aside one of the least of these commands and teaches others accordingly will be called least in the kingdom of heaven, but whoever practices and teaches these commands will be called great in the kingdom of heaven. 20 For I tell you that unless your righteousness surpasses that of the Pharisees and the teachers of the law, you will certainly not enter the kingdom of heaven.
Do we obey because we feel we must?
Or do we surpass mere obedience with wanting to please God, give honor and glory to God because our loving, intimate relationship with our Father in Heaven?
God’s Law is not a list. God’s law is love. We need to get it right…to be right with God.
Do I really believe that what I believe is really real?
Is what I think, say and do from a heart of love?
Dear Heavenly Father,
I’m sorry, Lord for those times I get all caught up in obedience and forget why I do what I do. I love you with all my heart, mind and soul. I’m driven by your love for me and others. Help us all to love like you love, for that is getting it right.
In Jesus Name, Amen