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God's Law Magnified
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Copyright © 2011 Jonathan Mukwiri 
 
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hat breach of earthly laws - criminal or civil laws - attracts consequences, should signal to us that breach of the law of God has consequences too. This booklet assesses what constitutes a breach in light of the letter and the spirit of the law of God.  God is looking for a people who will be loyal to His law.  “For the eyes of the LORD run to and fro throughout the whole earth, to shew himself strong in the behalf of them whose heart is perfect toward him.  Herein thou hast done foolishly: therefore from henceforth thou shalt have wars” (2 Chronicles 16:9).

The difficulty in understanding breach of God’s law comes from the twisted concepts of Truth that the circular world sometimes holds.  To the circular world, there is no absolute truth; all truth is relative.  Holding Jesus before the judgment hall, Pilate, with his twisted concept of truth being relative, scorned Him, “what is truth?” (John 18:38), Pilate scornfully asked.

We live in this circular world where, unfortunately, Christians join in the twisted concept of relative truth.  Imagine there was no absolute truth and speed limit of 70 mph was relative to each individual driver’s understanding; imagine the chaos on the highways!  Imagine the surgeon operating on your brain had no absolute rules of ethics and procedure, would you be happy being such surgeon’s patient? I hope not.

Many have deceived themselves that to abrogate the consequences of breach of God’s law, they have got to believe that either there is no God or that God removed the law. In their twisted concepts, problem solved, they think.
 

Imagine a State does not change the law on the speed limit of 70 mph.  In order then to abrogate the consequences of exceeding the speed limit, you ignore signposts reading 70 mph, and convince your self that either the State does not exist or that the State has changed the speed limit.  How far can you honestly abrogate breach of speed limit if you where to be stopped driving at 100 mph?  Right thinking people would agree that one could not abrogate the consequences in those circumstances.  Yet the same people may have difficulty in accepting that by merely thinking God does not exist or He removed the law, breach of the law of God is not excused.

The consequence of breach of the law of God is clear.  “And I will punish the world for their evil, and the wicked for their iniquity; and I will cause the arrogancy of the proud to cease, and will lay low the haughtiness of the terrible” (Isaiah 13:11).  If you have transgressed the law, that is, committed a sin, unless you repent, the consequence clearly is death. God requires and expects us to obey His law at all times.

Today’s obedience will not excuse tomorrow’s breach.  “Therefore, thou son of man, say unto the children of thy people, The righteousness of the righteous shall not deliver him in the day of his transgression: as for the wickedness of the wicked, he shall not fall thereby in the day that he turneth from his wickedness; neither shall the righteous be able to live for his righteousness in the day that he sinneth” (Ezekiel 33:12).

 

Jesus magnified the law

As a Christian, you should magnify the law, for Christ magnified the law.  Foreseeing Jesus’ treatment of the law during His earthly ministry, the prophet Isaiah said, “The Lord is well pleased for his righteousness' sake; he will magnify the law, and make it honourable” (Isaiah 42:21).  Whilst on earth, Christ lived a perfect life in harmony with the law.  Jesus kept His father’s law, and so should Christians who truly love Him.  “If ye keep my commandments, ye shall abide in my love; even as I have kept my Father's commandments, and abide in his love” (John 15:10).

During His ministry on earth, His critics, the Pharisees, thought that He was seeking to lessen the claims of the law of God, but he clearly dismissed such allegation.  He said to His critics, “Think not that I am come to destroy the law, or the prophets: I am not come to destroy, but to fulfill” (Matthew 5:17).  To those that still doubted the validity of the law, Jesus said, “Till heaven and earth pass, one jot or one tittle shall in no wise pass from the law” (Matthew 5:18).

Jesus, by His death on the cross, presented Himself a sacrifice without blemish.  By faith we escape the justice of punishment for our sins and instead claim eternal life.  Jesus having secured eternal life to men, having magnified the law, He requires that every Christian follow His example.  Jesus tells His followers, “If ye love me, keep my commandments” (John 14:15).

The apostle Paul puts it this way: “Love worketh no ill to his neighbour: therefore love is the fulfilling of the law” (Romans 13:10).  This love that enables us to keep the law, is based on self-denial.  Jesus did not only pay the price, but He empowers us to have true love that in turn keeps His law.  We must come to Jesus in faith in order to avoid breaches of the law of God and therefore escape sin and its consequences.

 

Your love for God

The first four commandments enjoined upon man his duty to serve the Lord our God. “Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind” (Mattehew 22:39).  The first four of the Ten Commandments hangs on this first great commandment.

The first commandment requires man to have no other gods but God (Exodus 20:3).  Breach occurs when man cherishes in his mind or in his affections anything in rivalry with God.  All that we think, say and do must be secondary to the glory of God.  Many things can be given as examples that can easily replace God and become a god in our lives.  Pride, money or passion can become a god, thus breaching the first of the Ten Commandments.  The sure counsel from one author is this: Whatever we cherish that tends to lessen our love for God or to interfere with the service due Him, of that do we make a god (Ellen G. White, Sons and Daughters of God (1955), p 56).

The second commandment forbids the worship of images or idols (Exodus 20:4-5).  Like breach of the first commandment, anything that tends to abate our love for God, or to interfere with the service due Him, becomes thereby an idol or image.  If lawyers pursue their briefs or case files with zeal, or if other professions do so at the expense of their service to God, or while the service of God is made a secondary consideration, that is a form of idolatry.  Others think because they give to the poor or they give to charities, they can abrogate their duty to God in fulfilling their love to God.  Just like being faithful to civil laws does not excuse your duty to criminal laws, so is the analogy to God’s law in the two great precepts.

Many Christians today form idols of their prosperity and adore as gods their jewelry, laces, costly apparel, neglecting their duty to mankind’s poor and needy or less privileged.  Others will seek to justify their costly attires and indulgence in material because they give to the poor through charities, yet their hearts if weighed would be found wanting, for they give only to be honoured in publicity.  These are all forms of idol worship.  Remember, idolaters will not be in heaven (Revelation 22:15).

The third commandment prohibits taking the name of the Lord in vain (Exodus 20:7).  Some have interpreted this to mean that as long as they swear in truth, then no breach.  The bible teaches otherwise.  “But I say unto you, Swear not at all; neither by heaven; for it is God's throne: Nor by the earth; for it is his footstool: neither by Jerusalem; for it is the city of the great King.  Neither shalt thou swear by thy head, because thou canst not make one hair white or black.  But let your communication be, Yea, yea; Nay, nay: for whatsoever is more than these cometh of evil” (Matthew 5:34-37).   Fellow Christian, it cannot be clearer than that.  In our conversations, yes or no should suffice.

Others have gone too far, not only to take the Lord’s name in vain, but also to take the Lord’s honour by allowing or suffering themselves to be called the name of God.  The bible says “holy and reverend is his name” (Psalms 111:9).  Christians should never suffer themselves to be called Reverend; that amounts to a breach of the third commandment.

The fourth Commandments calls us to worship the true God (Exodus 20:8).  You will notice that this is the only Commandment that begins with a command to Remember.  Those who will profess to God, to be Christian, must Remember the Sabbath day.  Ironically, this is the Commandment majority of the Christian world would want us to Forget.  This God given memorial is not to be forgotten; on the contrary, it should be remembered.

Men have by their own devising sought to substitute the Sabbath with other days.  Some have sought to argue that this was an old law and done away with by Jesus.  But that is not true, for Jesus Himself said, “Think not that I am come to destroy the law, or the prophets: I am not come to destroy, but to fulfil” (Matthew 5:17).

Others have sought to argue that only the fourth Commandment changed.  This also is not true, as Jesus said, “Till heaven and earth pass, one jot or one tittle shall in no wise pass from the law” (Matthew 5:18).   The true Sabbath day is Saturday (from sunset Friday to sunset Saturday), read Luke 23:53-24:1.  It was Jesus’ custom to go to His father’s courts (synagogue or church) on Sabbath (Luke 4:16).  Without biblical basis many Christians have sought to substitute the Sabbath with Sunday worship.

To illustrate the absoluteness and immutability of the 10 Commandments, Jesus said, “And it is easier for heaven and earth to pass, than one title of the law to fail” (Luke 16:17).  Some think that breach of one law, the Sabbath, is a misdemeanour and will be overlooked; they are wrong, “For whosoever shall keep the whole law, and yet offend in one point, he is guilty of all” (James 2: 10).

Many Christians who keep Sunday may claim that they do so because Jesus resurrected on a Sunday.  Whilst it is true Jesus did resurrect on a Sunday, Jesus, as already noted, did not change the law.  Worship on any other day other than Saturday would lack three aspects of the true Sabbath: first, God “rested the seventh day”, second, God “blessed the sabbath day”, and third, God “hallowed it” (Exodus 20:9); and would therefore be in vain: “But in vain they do worship me, teaching for doctrines the commandments of men” (Matthew 15:9).

If one should claim to be a Christian, Christ requires him to worship God in truth.  It is written: “But the hour cometh, and now is, when the true worshippers shall worship the Father in spirit and in truth: for the Father seeketh such to worship him” (John 4: 23).  God’s true people are identified by their custom of keeping of God’s Commandments (Revelation 14:12, 17).  From creation and forever, Sabbath will be kept by God’s people (Genesis 2:1-3; Isaiah 66:22, 23). Before judgment falls upon you, you need to be in harmony with the law of God.  You need to join the remnant of God who keep the Commandments and have the faith of Jesus.

As a Christian, do not suffer yourself to worship other gods by failing to worship God.  If you keep the Sabbath holy, you signify that you worship God, otherwise your service is in vain.  “If thou turn away thy foot from the sabbath, from doing thy pleasure on my holy day; and call the sabbath a delight, the holy of the LORD, honourable; and shalt honour him, not doing thine own ways, nor finding thine own pleasure, nor speaking thine own words” (Isaiah 58:13).

Whereas acts of necessity and mercy are permissible even on Sabbath, such as saving life, other labours are a breach of the Sabbath.  Jesus made this clear in His rebuke to the scribes and Pharisees: “Then said Jesus unto them, I will ask you one thing; Is it lawful on the sabbath days to do good, or to do evil? to save life, or to destroy it?” (Luke 6:9).  Do not be deceived; let your whole do nothing on the sacred hours of the Sabbath (sunset Friday to sunset Saturday) save that is a service of worship to God.

In the name of saving life, do not make it an avenue to merely earn an extra income or seek to save your job or to save and enlarge your clientele.  You must, even in saving life, guard your motive, to be sure that you would look Jesus in the eyes with a free conscious of a worship service on Sabbath.  If you are or think you are saving life, you may want to test and clear your conscious by working for free on Sabbath, and if paid faithfully returning the income to the employer.  If you instead give the income to charity, make sure you do not get credit for it; but even then why take it from your employer?

You should remember, “the heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked; who can know it?” (Jeremiah 17:9).  Not even you know your own heart; it is that deceitful.  If you think you are justified in the manner you act on Sabbath, ask God to search your heart: “Search me, O God, and know my heart: try me, and know my thoughts” (Psalms 139:13).

 

Your love for fellow man

The last six commandments enjoined upon man his duty to love mankind as a service to God. “And the second is like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself” (Mattehew 22:39).  The last six of the Ten Commandments hangs on this second great commandment.

The fifth Commandment requires us to honour parents (Exodus 20:12).  This is the only Commandment that embodies a promise: long life for those that honour parents.  When as a Christian you show no regard for parents, you in essence show contempt for God’s Commandments.  This is not a Commandment given by parents; it is from God.  It follows then, a Christian who is in breach of the fifth Commandment, who does not oblige to the rightful authority of his parents, is in contempt of the authority of God.

The word Respect is commonly used in our cities; O that it could be used in honouring parents!  The Commandment, in essence, calls us to be kind, courteous, loving and respectful to our parents and to those we come into contact.  Ask yourself, would your reasonable parent wish that you were disrespectful to others?  In dealing with old parents or other elderly people, a Christian will show respect and bring honour to God; otherwise in breach of the law of God.

The sixth Commandment prohibits killing or murder (Exodus 20:13).  The whole law of God must be obeyed both in letter and in its spirit; this is no exception.  We need not define killing or murder; this Commandment is clear in its letter.  The spirit of the law in this Commandment was well explained by Jesus Himself.  “Whosoever hateth his brother is a murderer: and ye know that no murderer hath eternal life abiding in him” (1 John 3:15).  The prohibition goes beyond the act of killing, to the spirit of killing.  It includes all acts of injustice.  Any act that tends to shorten one’s life or the life of another is a breach of the sixth Commandment.

Hatred, revenge, harm to others, selfish neglect for the needy, or overworking with negative effects to one’s quality of life, are all in breaches of the sixth Commandment.  Do not be deceived, passions of jealousy, envy, hatred, malignity, or revenge, though without an act of murder, mostly because there is a want of opportunity, not will, are forms of murder in the sense taught by Jesus in 1 John 3:15.  Let God search your heart that you will seek after righteousness.

The seventh Commandment forbids adultery (Exodus 20: 14).  In magnifying this law, Jesus clearly taught the spirit of the law, showing that the evil thoughts or looks to be as truly sin as is the unlawful act of adultery itself.  Looking at the letter of the law, ‘Thou shalt not commit adultery’, Jesus gave the spirit of the law, that lust was adultery.  Jesus put it this way: “Ye have heard that it was said by them of old time, Thou shalt not commit adultery: But I say unto you, That whosoever looketh on a woman to lust after her hath committed adultery with her already in his heart” (Matthew 5:27, 28).  The bible clearly teaches that, man is as his thoughts are (Proverbs 23:7); and for that reason: “Keep thy heart with all diligence; for out of it are the issues of life” (Proverbs 4:23).

So, if you allow yourself to look lustily at others as your sexual targets, or look at certain sexy pictures whilst passing time between court cases or work, you deceive yourself, for you are on road to develop adulterous passions and end up transgressing the law.  The counsel of God is: “Flee fornication. Every sin that a man doeth is without the body; but he that committeth fornication sinneth against his own body” (1 Corinthians 6:18).  As a Christian, flee from such temptations, or else you will end up in breach of the holy law.

The eighth Commandment prohibits theft (Exodus 20:15).  This goes beyond the common law definition of theft: dishonestly appropriating property belonging to another with the intention of permanently depriving the other of it.  In the spirit of the law taught by our Lord, the breach of this law includes failing to pay a just wage to your employee, attempting to enrich yourself by taking advantage of the other’s ignorance, and taking advantage of other’s misfortune.  Plausible arguments about why you steal or deprive others, is only a snare from the enemy of souls, not only to cause a breach of this Commandment but also to cage a sinner into sin.

When you get hooked to earning through dishonesty means, however trivial that might seem, the enemy of the souls knows you will not stop at that, you will next rob God Himself.  “Will a man rob God? Yet ye have robbed me. But ye say, Wherein have we robbed thee? In tithes and offerings” (Malachi 3:8).  Do not allow yourself to develop a cheating habit; otherwise you risk becoming accustomed to cheating others until you cheat yourself out of heaven.

The ninth Commandment forbids lying and bearing false witness (Exodus 20:16).  Even the earthly courts do not favour false witnesses; perjury is an offence in most if not all jurisdictions.  Where the character of our fellow men can be affected, the ninth Commandment calls us to tell the absolute truth.  We must guard our minds, tongue and actions in this matter.  Any form of misrepresentation, whether spoken or in deeds, will become a breach of the ninth Commandment.

These breach factors include turning of your eyes or use of gestures to give a false impression, overstatement of facts for impressing falsely, insinuations aimed at giving a false impression, or mere exaggeration for false impression.

If you are a lawyer, for example, in defending your client, as lawyer you must guard the impression you give to the court, lest you becomes a false witness.  As a Christian, every thing done or said should be transparent as sunshine.  Do not lie, for “A righteous man hateth lying: but a wicked man is loathsome, and cometh to shame” (Proverbs 13:5).  Jesus put it this way: “But let your communication be, Yea, yea; Nay, nay: for whatsoever is more than these cometh of evil” (Matthew 5:37).

The tenth Commandment forbids covetousness (Exodus 20:17).  This lists some of the things that should not be coveted, including thy neighbour's house, and wife.  The list is not exhaustive, as it clearly includes “any thing that is thy neighbour's”.  At the heart of this prohibition is condemnation of selfish desires.  Breach of this law is committed where one benefits at a disadvantage of his neighbour.  In keeping this law, we ought to refrain from selfish indulgences of sinful desires.  In that way, we will be able to overcome the temptation of coveting that belongs to another.

 

Jesus' death affirmed the law

Many religious teachers assert that Christ by His death abolished the law, and men are henceforth free from its requirements. There are some who represent it as a grievous yoke, and in contrast to the bondage of the law they present the liberty to be enjoyed under the gospel.

But not so did prophets and apostles regard the holy law of God. Said David: “I will walk at liberty: for I seek Thy precepts” (Psalm 119:45). The apostle James, who wrote after the death of Christ, refers to the Decalogue as “the royal law” and “the perfect law of liberty” (James 2:8; 1:25). And the revelator, half a century after the crucifixion, pronounces a blessing upon them “that do His commandments, that they may have right to the tree of life, and may enter in through the gates into the city” (Revelation 22:14).

The claim that Christ by His death abolished His Father's law is without foundation. Had it been possible for the law to be changed or set aside, then Christ need not have died to save man from the penalty of sin. The death of Christ, so far from abolishing the law, proves that it is immutable. The Son of God came to “magnify the law, and make it honorable” (Isaiah 42:21). He said: “Think not that I am come to destroy the law;” “till heaven and earth pass, one jot or one tittle shall in no wise pass from the law” (Matthew 5;17, 18). And concerning Himself He declares: “I delight to do Thy will, O my God: yea, Thy law is within My heart” (Psalm 40:8).

The law of God, from its very nature, is unchangeable. It is a revelation of the will and the character of its Author. God is love, and His law is love. Its two great principles are love to God and love to man. “Love is the fulfilling of the law” (Romans 13:10). The character of God is righteousness and truth; such is the nature of His law. Says the psalmist: “Thy law is the truth:” “all Thy commandments are righteousness” (Psalm 119:142, 172). And the apostle Paul declares: “The law is holy, and the commandment holy, and just, and good” (Romans 7:12). Such a law, being an expression of the mind and will of God, must be as enduring as its Author.

It is the work of conversion and sanctification to reconcile men to God by bringing them into accord with the principles of His law. In the beginning, man was created in the image of God. He was in perfect harmony with the nature and the law of God; the principles of righteousness were written upon his heart. But sin alienated him from his Maker. He no longer reflected the divine image. His heart was at war with the principles of God's law.

“The carnal mind is enmity against God: for it is not subject to the law of God, neither indeed can be” (Romans 8:7). But “God so loved the world, that He gave His only-begotten Son,” (John 3:16) that man might be reconciled to God. Through the merits of Christ he can be restored to harmony with his Maker. His heart must be renewed by divine grace; he must have a new life from above. This change is the new birth, without which, says Jesus, “he cannot see the kingdom of God” (John 3:3).

The first step in reconciliation to God is the conviction of sin. “Sin is the transgression of the law.” “By the law is the knowledge of sin” (1 John 3:4; Romans 3:20). In order to see his guilt, the sinner must test his character by God's great standard of righteousness, the law. It is a mirror which shows the perfection of a righteous character and enables him to discern the defects in his own.

The law reveals to man his sins, but it provides no remedy. While it promises life to the obedient, it declares that death is the portion of the transgressor. The gospel of Christ alone can free him from the condemnation or the defilement of sin. He must exercise repentance toward God, whose law has been transgressed; and faith in Christ, his atoning sacrifice. Thus he obtains “remission of sins that are past” (Romans 3:25) and becomes a partaker of the divine nature. He is a child of God, having received the spirit of adoption, whereby he cries: “Abba, Father!” (Romans 8:15).

Is he now free to transgress God's law? Says Paul: “Do we then make void the law through faith? God forbid: yea, we establish the law.” “How shall we, that are dead to sin, live any longer therein?” And John declares: “This is the love of God, that we keep His commandments: and His commandments are not grievous” (Romans 3:31; 6:2; 1 John 5:3).

In the new birth the heart is brought into harmony with God, as it is brought into accord with His law. When this mighty change has taken place in the sinner, he has passed from death unto life, from sin unto holiness, from transgression and rebellion to obedience and loyalty. The old life of alienation from God has ended; the new life of reconciliation, of faith and love, has begun. Then “the righteousness of the law” will “be fulfilled in us, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit” (Romans 8:4). And the language of the soul will be: “O how love I Thy law! it is my meditation all the day” (Psalm 119:97).

 

Grace affirms the law

Often we hear this argument in an effort to belittle the law of God: “Well, since we are not under the law but under grace, we do not need to keep the Ten Commandments any longer.” Is this a valid point? The Bible certainly does say that we are not under the law, but does that imply that we are free from the obligation to obey it? The text is found in Romans 6:14, 15, and it says, “For sin shall not have dominion over you: for ye are not under the law, but under grace. What then? shall we sin, because we are not under the law, but under grace? God forbid.”

It is the sophistry of Satan that the death of Christ brought in grace to take the place of the law. The death of Jesus did not change, or annul, or lessen in the slightest degree, the law of Ten Commandments. That precious grace offered to men through a Saviour's blood, establishes the law of God. Since the fall of man, God's moral government and His grace are inseparable. They go hand in hand through all dispensations. “Mercy and truth are met together; righteousness and peace have kissed each other” (Psalms 85:10).

Each law of God is an enactment of grace, love, and saving power. These laws, obeyed, are our life, our salvation, our happiness, our peace. Obedience to His statutes and laws is the life and prosperity of His people. The influence of a gospel hope will not lead the sinner to look upon the salvation of Christ as a matter of free grace, while he continues to live in transgression of the law of God. He will reform his ways, become loyal to God through the strength obtained from his Saviour, and lead a new and purer life.

As the sacrifice in our behalf was complete, so our restoration from the defilement of sin is to be complete. No act of wickedness will the law of God excuse; no unrighteousness can escape its condemnation. The ethics of the gospel acknowledge no standard but the perfection of the divine character. The life of Christ was a perfect fulfillment of every precept of the law. He said, “I have kept my Father's commandments” (John 15:10). His life is our example of obedience and service. God alone can renew the heart. “It is God which worketh in you both to will and to do of his good pleasure.” But we are bidden, “Work out your own salvation” (Phil. 2:13, 12).

To the obedient child of God, the commandments are a delight. “But without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him” (Hebrews 11:6). Moreover, this faith must show itself externally. “Even so faith, if it hath not works, is dead, being alone” (James 2:17).

When we speak of faith, there is a distinction that should be borne in mind. There is a kind of belief that is wholly distinct from faith. The existence and power of God, the truth of His Word, are facts that even Satan and his hosts cannot at heart deny. The Bible says that “the devils also believe, and tremble” (James 2:19); but this is not faith. Where there is not only a belief in God's Word, but a submission of the will to Him; where the heart is yielded to Him, the affections fixed upon Him, there is faith - faith that works by love and purifies the soul.

Grace and faith do not cancel obedience. Paul ask and answers, “Do we then make void the law through faith? God forbid: yea, we establish the law” (Romans 3:31). Faith is not an opiate, but a stimulant. Looking to Calvary will not quiet your soul into nonperformance of duty, but will create faith that will work, purifying the soul from all selfishness.

Unfortunately, the faith in Christ's grace which saves the soul is not what it is represented to be by many. “Believe, believe,” is their cry; “only believe in Christ, and you will be saved. It is all you have to do.” While true faith trusts wholly in Christ for salvation, it will lead to perfect conformity to the law of God.

There are two errors against which the children of God - particularly those who have just come to trust in His grace - especially need to guard. The first is that of looking to their own works, trusting to anything they can do, to bring themselves into harmony with God. He who is trying to become holy by his own works in keeping the law, is attempting an impossibility. It is the grace of Christ alone, through faith, that can make us holy.

The opposite and no less dangerous error is that belief in Christ releases men from keeping the law of God; that since by faith alone we become partakers of the grace of Christ, our works have nothing to do with our redemption.

But notice here that obedience is not a mere outward compliance, but the service of love. The law of God is an expression of His very nature; it is an embodiment of the great principle of love, and hence is the foundation of His government in heaven and earth. Instead of releasing man from obedience, it is faith, and faith only, that makes us partakers of the grace of Christ, which enables us to render obedience.

 

Satan's lie about God's law

Satan has long put forward the claim that some specification of the law spoken by God's own voice has been set aside. He need not assail the whole law; if he can lead men to disregard one precept, his purpose is gained. For “whosoever shall keep the whole law, and yet offend in one point, he is guilty of all” (James 2:10). By consenting to break one precept, men are brought under Satan's power. Prophecy declares of the great apostate power, the representative of Satan: “He shall speak great words against the Most High, and shall wear out the saints of the Most High, and think to change times and laws: and they shall be given into his hand” (Daniel 7:25). Men are setting up Sunday laws to counterwork the Sabbath law of God, and in their zeal to enforce these laws they will oppress their fellow men.

The warfare against God's law will continue until the end of time. All will be called to choose between the law of God and the laws of men. There will be but two classes. Every character will be fully developed. All will show whether they have chosen the side of loyalty or that of rebellion.

Then the end will come. God will vindicate His law and deliver His people. Satan and all who join him in rebellion will be cut off. Sin and sinners will perish, root and branch. “For, behold, the day cometh, that shall burn as an oven; and all the proud, yea, and all that do wickedly, shall be stubble: and the day that cometh shall burn them up, saith the LORD of hosts, that it shall leave them neither root nor branch” (Malachi 4:1).

This is not an arbitrary act on the part of God. The rejecters of His mercy reap that which they have sown. God is the fountain of life, and when one chooses sin, he cuts himself off from life. God says, “All they that hate Me love death” (Proverbs 8:36). God gives them existence for a time that they may develop their character and reveal their principles. This accomplished, they receive the results of their own choice. Satan and all who unite with him place themselves so out of harmony with God that the very presence of Him who is love will destroy them.

 

Conclusion

The life of our Lord Jesus Christ whilst on earth, demonstrated that there has never been an excuse to transgress the law.  Jesus magnified the law, and by His indwelling power, by faith, we keep the law.  Without Jesus, we can do nothing: “I am the vine, ye are the branches: He that abideth in me, and I in him, the same bringeth forth much fruit: for without me ye can do nothing” (John 15:5).  To abide in Christ, and indeed the process of being fortified to keep the law, requires us to seek after righteousness.  “Blessed are they which do hunger and thirst after righteousness: for they shall be filled” (Matthew 5:6).

Breach of the law, breaks our relationship with God.  "Your iniquities have separated you from your God" (Isaiah 59:2).  God calls us to be obedient to His law and to be holy.  “But as he which hath called you is holy, so be ye holy in all manner of conversation; Because it is written, Be ye holy; for I am holy" (1 Peter 1:15, 16).  When we cherish the word of God, it has the power to restrain us from transgressing the law.  "Thy word have I hid in mine heart, that I might not sin against thee" (Psalm 119:11).  In order to claim the power of Jesus to keep us from any breach of the law, we must not cherish sin.

The Commandments, which represent God’s character, should ever alert us to the sinfulness of sin.  "That sin by the commandment might become exceeding sinful" (Romans 7:13).  Do not find excuses for sin; ask Jesus for the power to overcome (1 Corinthians 15:57). Knowing that the law of God is immutable, for “the law is holy, and the commandment holy, and just, and good” (Romans 7:12), “So speak ye, and so do, as they that shall be judged by the law of liberty” (James 2:12).

Finally, “Let us hear the conclusion of the whole matter: Fear God, and keep His commandments: for this is the whole duty of man” (Ecclesiastes 12:13).

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