The Letter of the Law
July 11, 2005 • By Ed Wrather07.12.05
Do not think that I came to destroy the Law or the Prophets. I did not come to destroy but to fulfill. For assuredly, I say to you, till heaven and earth pass away, one jot or one tittle will by no means pass from the law till all is fulfilled. Whoever therefore breaks one of the least of these commandments, and teaches men so, shall be called least in the kingdom of heaven; but whoever does and teaches them, he shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven. - Matthew 5:17-19.
For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord. - Romans 6:23.
Dave Newman is a lawbreaker and in San Marcos, Texas, he was arrested for breaking the law. Emergency personnel warned Newman repeatedly to leave the water because they said that he was “interfering with public duties.” However, Newman refused and proceeded to rescue a drowning man caught in a river current. After being released from jail on a $2,000.00 bond, Newman said, “I was amazed. I had a very uncomfortable night after saving that guy’s life (Abed Duamni). He thanked me for it in front of the police, and then they took me to jail.” Even though Dave Newman broke the law, hopefully, a judge will use some common sense and throw it out of court. However, the prosecutor and the emergency personnel will point out that the law is the law and that it was broken by Mr. Newman in his successful rescue of Abed.
Are you a lawbreaker? The fact is that we have all, except for Jesus, broken the law, God‘s Law. Romans 3:23 states very clearly, “For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.” That includes all of us. Jesus says, “I say to you, till heaven and earth pass away, one jot or one tittle will by no means pass from the law till all is fulfilled (Matthew 5:18).” The OT laws, which include the Ten Commandments, are still in effect. Jesus says, “Do not think that I came to destroy the Law or the Prophets. I did not come to destroy but to fulfill (Matthew 5:17).”
What hope do we have of being able to go through life and perfectly keep God’s laws? None. Have you never told a lie or a half-truth? Have you never had an ugly thought? Have you never stolen anything even a paper clip? Have you always been nice to everyone? The fact is that we cannot perfectly obey all of God’s laws. However, the law is still the law and there is an eternal death sentence for breaking the law even at one point. God is still God and He will one day judge us. We may not like it, but that is still the way it is whether we like it or not.
Wouldn’t it be nice if there were some kind of escape clause so that we could escape the penalty that we deserve for breaking the law? The fact is that God knew how difficult it would be for us to obey the Law and that is why He provided a way for us to escape the penalty of our disobedience. The Name of that escape clause is Jesus. Someone had to be penalized for our disobedience because God is a Holy and completely Righteous God. That someone who was penalized was Jesus. He took our sins upon Himself on the cross. He took our place and suffered and died for us on the cross. He died for you on the cross. His blood was shed for our sins.
When we receive the “gift” of salvation through Jesus Christ, His righteousness is imputed to us. When God looks at us He no longer sees us as sinners; instead He sees the righteousness of His Son because we have been washed in the blood of Jesus. The letter of the Law has been fulfilled but only through the cost of the sacrifice of the perfect lamb, Jesus, on the cross.
Want to be free from the penalty of the Law? Receive Jesus Christ as your personal Savior. Salvation is a gift that is available to you if you will receive it. What will you do with Jesus?