For many of us Christians we have been taught that the law of God is some icky, evil virus we should avoid. Well-meaning preachers, teachers, and others have sifted a verse or so to foster a stigma against obeying God. Consequently, we have nurtured generations of “believers” who believe grace is a license to live lawlessly while having the perspective God’s laws are nothing but a burdensome checklist of do’s and don’ts. Just like our current medical experts are discerning all of the data (of COVID-19) before implementing federal and state policies, we too need to discern all the Biblical data before implementing doctrines. Failure to do so invites preventable disaster, death, and eternal doom!
The Apostle Peter even warned his readers that many would twist the Apostle Paul’s difficult and confusing letters explaining “the law of sin and death” compared to the “law of God” and rather twist it to lead people to believe lawlessness is what Paul promoted (2 Peter 3:14-18). For example, some of the common passages people use to justify rebellion to God’s commands is found in select verses or chapters in the Book of Acts, Romans, and Galatians. If we only referenced the negative connotations while failing to realize Paul often goes back and forth revealing the pros of “the law of God” compared to the “law of sin and death”, which is the consequence of operating in the flesh breaking God’s law (Romans 7:21-8:8), we can easily confuse his message. When we compare all of Paul’s writings we get a clear message he, like Jesus, was against sin, which the Apostle John defined as being without God’s laws or breaking God’s laws (1 John 3:4).
Likewise, both Paul and Jesus were ardently against misusing or twisting God’s law for man’s own purposes or even worse, teaching people to obey their laws or their doctrines verses God’s law (see Mark 7 as an example). Rather, Paul takes significant amount of time throughout his writings imploring people to take advantage of the Holy Spirit in the sense of now being able with His Spirit of Holiness’ help to obey God’s eternal, holy laws producing eternal, holy fruit (Romans 8; Galatians 6; Ezekiel 11:19-21; 36:27; Matthew 7). He also chides those who are obeying God’s laws with impure motives such as:
1) Striving to obey God’s laws in order to be saved thinking they can save themselves dismissing the point of the cross (Acts 15:1; Romans 4:14; Galatians 3:6, 5:4)
2) Elevating (pagan or their own) traditions, customs, and doctrines above God’s law is wrong (Gal.4:8-20; Colossians 2; Mark 7);
3) Obeying God’s law as motive to simply fit in or to be accepted in certain circles is also wrong (Gal.2:11-14; 6:11-15) verses obeying them out of a grateful circumcised heart being apart of God’s family, while elaborating the once pagan, lawless Gentiles, but now believers in Jesus/Yeshua, are no longer considered unclean or being without God’s law/lawless for in God’s eyes both believing Jew and Gentile are one in the same upon believing in Jesus as God’s natural and adopted children and both are expected to learn and adopt the household’s instructions of Abba Father found in His Torah/law little by little as the Holy Spirit leads and having different classes of people needs to cease (Acts 10; Acts 15; Romans 2:28-29; 10:12-13; Romans 11; Galatians 3:28-29; Ephesians 2:11-19; 4:17-24; Revelation 12:17, 14:12, 22:14). Note: Did you know the Torah is known as the “tree of life”?
In fact, the Holy Spirit does a good job detailing God’s laws of love in the first half of Scriptures (Torah) while extracting the intent and sum of God’s laws in the New Testament.
Explaining the heart and nature of God’s laws is precisely what Jesus came to do (Matthew 5:14-19; 22:34-40) and will do again one fine day upon His rule and reign here on earth (Isaiah 2:3-4; Isaiah 51, 65-66; Micah 4; Zechariah 14) and He even raises the standard of God’s law revealing it is all about exposing the motives of one’s heart and encouraging true authentic love for God and one another (Matthew 7:21-32; 22:34-40; John 14-15).
Moreover, when we demonstrate love we are fulfilling God’s law of love. Likewise, when we fulfill the law, we are being love!
Moreover, when we demonstrate love we are fulfilling God’s law of love. Likewise, when we fulfill the law, we are being love! This is why Jesus didn’t come to do away with His Father’s laws of love, for if He did so He could not be the sinless Messiah, but rather He came to pay the debt for breaking God’s laws, to teach us God’s motive in establishing them, and how they are in fact what God deems as loving Him and loving others. God’s laws are cultivating a culture of true love. Jesus both taught and obeyed God’s laws – He fulfilled them as we also are called to do. Because He first loved us, by demonstrating obedience to God’s laws of love, we will be inspired to love God and others in return out of a grateful, circumcised heart (1 John 4:19; 5:3).
So instead of viewing God’s laws of love as a fatal, hated virus we strive to avoid like the coronavirus, while attacking those who cheerfully obey God out of a grateful grace-filled heart, participating in precisely what Jesus warned would happen in the end-times detailed in Matthew 24:7-14, may we instead obey God’s laws letting our love for Him and others be contagious!
Lawless = Loveless/cold whereas Lawful=Love/warmth (see Matthew 24:12)
“And because lawlessness will abound, the love of many will grow cold.”