Advent 2012: Day

The law of God that we in our own strength cannot keep


Today's Text: Exodus 20:1-17

Text: Exodus 20:1-17

If we read the ten commandments as a checklist that can be followed to be in right standing, we may have missed the point. If we read them with a smugness on our face and satisfaction in ourselves, we may have missed the point. If we read them and hear anything else than our absolute inability to obtain righteousness and stand before God on our own – we have missed the point.

The law was never meant to be fulfilled by man and before He shared it with Moses, our Father had a rescue plan for our failure. When we read the ten commandments, we as people of the new covenant – can read it with a contented sigh because we know the one God-Man who fulfilled the law. Not for His own merit, but for our own good and the glory of His Father. This is good news.

Romans 8:1-4 says, “There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. For the law of the Spirit of life has set you free in Christ Jesus from the law of sin and death. For God has done what the law, weakened by the flesh, could not do. By sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh and for sin, he condemned sin in the flesh, in order that the righteous requirement of the law might be fulfilled in us, who walk not according to the flesh but according to the Spirit.”

Amen and Amen.

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  • A beautiful truth right there! Thank You & praise You Jesus!

  • Reading the 10 commandments often makes me feel guilty, unworthy, a sinner in His eyes. I know I am not perfect.. but after today's reading, I feel loved despite my imperfections. Thank you Jesus for your compassion and forgiveness.

  • Seentearkoe

    Thank you Lord for this reminder that it is not by my might that I can follow/obey the ten commandments but it is a gift of grace!

  • I thank God that He is the light. Had I read this one time I know that I would have had such a inward take on this because like you all this life is such a struggle between me and my flesh and trying to be like Christ and I find my self on the loosing end so much. But after the horrors of the week all I can see is how very dark this world is. How such innocents can be just taken out by such darkness, it’s unreal and then to hear so many use the dark events at Sandy Hook to say see this is proof there is no God, it makes it so clear how dark and sinister those events truly were. But God is light. And I saw the tiny fleck of Christians shining that light, on the news, as people called for prayer. But today’s devotional is so calming to me. Christ’s light has been and is and is to come. He is here aware and present in all of this. But it’s times like these that the spiritual battle field seems to have crossed over onto our realm and it becomes so real to me and frightening if we for a moment forget we know how this is going to end, the Morning Star wins. Light will break the darkness.

  • Jessica I

    Brandy! All I can say is wow! I say that prayer every morning before getting out of bed. “Dear Father in Heaven I pray that when others see me, they see You shining through me”. Every morning! Thank you Brandy!

  • carolspahn

    I seem to be always behind the hours of other postings, but I just have to say Hallelujah, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. You have delivered me from slavery. We are set free by the death, resurrection of Jesus, Immanuel, GOD with US!!! He broke the chains that bound us, the generational strongholds. Just as Israel was delivered from slavery and taken into the promised land, we are also in the spiritual walk in which we are living.
    I am so joyful. He knows me, and does love me. Forgives me. I liked the posting above about listening to the Spirit leading. I need to ask and obey more in my daily life, :Is this what I am supposed to be doing now? this minute? What do you want me to be doing, to see, to hear?

    Thanks all of you who post encouraging comments and what Father has revealed to you.

  • Tahwahnah

    Thank you Lord for giving us a way back to you.

  • Stephanie

    I have recently been working to overcome a "fear of failure" in different dimensions of my life. Whatever the topic, I have been known to play it safe rather than throwing myself out there, taking a risk, not being sure of the outcome and either achieving more than I expected OR having to pick up the pieces if [whatever I was trying to do] doesn't work out.
    …So then there is this idea to set goals and expectations higher than what is actually possible. When you work to achieve something beyond your capacity, you are setting yourself up not just for failure, but for greater "success" than if you would have played it safe.
    Why share all of this? Because this reading and reflection allowed me to realize that this is exactly what God has done for us through the 10 commandments. He has set the standard higher than what is actually possible for our human nature to maintain. He sets it up so that we fail; so that he can save us; so that by trying to abide by the (or the principles of the) 10 commandments, we are more faithful, experience more wonder and awe, and feel deeper love for those around us.
    God is good!

  • rocknitat55

    Thank God for this post. For years I prayed and strived to be righteous! I remember the day that I finally got it. That there was nothing I could do goood enough to be so.
    Thank God for Jesus. I still struggle with control and complete surrender.
    I love how Jesus was patient enough to show me what love feels like, what it looked like. As an overcomer of childhood abuse I had struggled with trust and control
    All of my life. Thank God there is no condemenation in Christ Jesus!
    I’ve been set free, no more chains holding me. I keep hearing that song by michael mcdowell. My son sung it yesterday for praise n worship. How blessed I am that u love me Jesus. How blessed I am to be serineded by you thru my son. What an awesome God you are.

  • LaTonya M

    Wow! Truly am I grateful to be apart of such a plan that opens my eyes and have such an appetite for God! I’m roughly new to posting my thoughts but think this helps with accountability to staying firm and committed to seekig him more. So long have I tried and tried to live my life in the law. I’m not saying since iv read this passage I have a grace pass. .but smh *just had a discernment clarity moment* but because I’m striving to live pleasing him and may and will miss the mark due to my flesh..he still grants a grace pass to see another day and reach towards the mark#Godisgood:)

  • Gods grace and love is so amazing. YE everyday like everyone I seem to struggle with being in control. I pray and I pray and I just feel like wow how come no answer. I am impatient so that doesn’t help. Today’s reason hit home and I can truly say I am understanding more and more each day if his amazing grace. Praying we all fight the struggle with peace and understanding that He is the one in control.

    Peace & blessings

    • Amy

      I struggle with needing to be in control also. Like someone said above, it's not like I could ever control the situation, but sometimes I hold on so tight when God wants me to release it to him. It seems like a lot of us struggle with that – wanting to control the situation. But I have realized that if I truly TRUST God, I realize that I don't need to be in control because his will for my life and his plan is so much better than I could ever ask or think. When I trust him, I can let go of this false sense of control that I have. I thank God that even as I learn to let go, he loves me and there is no condemnation in the fact that I have to go through the process.

  • This may be my all-time favorite SheReadsTruth devotion. I think part of the reason I have been so blessed by this study is because is has shown me that I am not alone in my love for Jesus. I am not alone in wanting to live a life fully about Him and surrendered to Him. Not too long before SheReadsTruth formed, I wrote this post.
    I felt so alone. I felt like no other Christain women understood that the WHOLE bible is about Jesus. I am glad to be proven wrong.
    Alesha <3

  • Danielle

    I am so grateful to have read today’s devotion as well as everyone’s responses! Before today I was in understanding that the 10 commandments were the law set for me to follow!! I am so appreciative for the clarity made in today’s lesson! God is so awesome.. And for sending His only son Jesus to take account for my sins, how lucky am I? THANK YOU GOD for your son!!! HALLELUJAH!!

    Like several of you all who responded, I struggle in life everyday- but knowing that God loves me just for me gives me the peace and satisfaction I need to go throughout everyday seeking him!

    I love God, I love you all!


  • God sent Jesus for US! We are to live like the Lord, but lets face it, we ARE human and we WILL make mistakes. That saying "Rules are meant to be broken", I think has a lot of God connection to it. God knew what was going to happen, he knew man would fall, so He gave the ultimate sacrifice for us! Imagine that love for your creation, your child. I thank the Lord everyday for His sacrifice for myself, my husband, my daughter…..THANK YOU JESUS!! THANK YOU GOD!!!

    INSTAGRAM: "jessica_dev"
    TWITTER: @TakeItLikeAMom

  • Shandy, thank you. You’ve put into words something that I have thought for months and months. We strive and work to live by the Spirit. Yet God Himself said it is finished. It seems like there are times when I am filled with Christ and other times where it’s just me, on my own. There is a phrase I heard somewhere that says, “It is often when God is the quietest, that He is doing the most.” Praise God for his unending grace to keep us on His path!

    • Shandy

      Hallelujah!! That’s an amazing thought! I will trust in him and this process

  • Jessica I

    Shandy, when I read your comment, I completely understand where you are coming from. I pray everyday for God to lead me in all decisions. To make sure what I am doing and saying is pleasing to God. It’s tough. God gives us free will but also gives us the Spirit to lead us. So when I make decisions based on my free will, I’m always asking “God is this where you want me to be?” Or “God is this what you want me to be doing?” It is a struggle for me. I want to do as God leads me to do but most times, I just don’t know. I pray I am following His purpose. And honestly, I have yet to know what my purpose is. I know I am here for a reason so each day, I wake up, pray and go out into the world. I go out for a run, go to work, and interact with other people at the gym, work, stores etc… I do struggle each day and pray I am fulfilling God’s purpose.

    • Brandi

      Jessica, I believe the Father's purpose for each of us is to directly influence those in our sphere of reference for Him. To show Him to all those around us. To show His truth and His love in our actions and in our words. Father, I pray that when people look at me they will see You!

      • Shandy

        I completely agree with Brandi! Witness to others a out who God is, not only by our words but also our lifestyle( that’s one of our purposes); trust God to guide you and he will. God is amazing one day you could be completely in the dark about your purpose and the next he gives you insight! Whatever your purpose is God will lead u!
        The word of God says Teach me to do Your will, For You are my God; Your Spirit is good. Lead me in the land of uprightness. (Psalms 143:10 NKJV).

    • olufunmi

      Thank u Jessica. I feel the exact same way. I grew up believing, because I was told, that God has a specific and beautiful purpose for my life and I prayed and sought for it for years. I almost got disappointed bcuz with every major appointment in my life, I thought, is this it? Then I realised just as u say. Its not in the big things, its in the little things we do to influence the ppl we meet on a daily basis. In what we say, how we react and how we demonstrate the God kind of love. That’s God ultimate plan for each of us. It lies in taking our gifting and talents and using it to show the world that God loves them

      I struggle too with doing right and following laws but an understanding that its by grace set me free. That we couldn’t do enough to be righteous and that Jesus has done it all for us.

  • Tahwahnah

    As Jesus put it while he was hanging on the cross, “It is done”.
    Lord help us to get that.

  • Andee Flynn

    Gratitude fills my heart today. Our sweet Heavenly Daddy loves us so much! He sent Jesus for me. Little me. I heard the most amazing thing the other day- " Jesus didn't die to make you valuable, He died because you ARE valuable." imagine that. We are so valuable to our Heavenly Papa that He sent Jesus for us. Blows me away. My head cannot grasp it. It's too big for me to get in my head. When it comes to God and His amazing grace- only my heart can get it. My heart can get what my head can't grasp.

  • I completely understand, Shandy. My own selfish will wants so badly to control the situation… As if I really have a chance to control my life! God’s perfect will cannot be impeded by us, though it is wonderful that God gives us the option to be “in the know” if we listen and obey. Obedience to the Spirit may be difficult, but disobeying it leads to more heartache.
    I was personally blown away by the fact that because Jesus came in sinful flesh–looked sin in the eye, living a human life–yet defeated the sinful life, He reigned victorious after putting our sins in their grave. What?! How brilliant and radical is the God we love and serve to glorify.

    • Shandy

      Hahah yes he truly is amazing! Jesus had a continuous conversation with God! He never focused on the earthly things because he knew he had an assignment!!! Imagine what we could accomplish for the. Kingdom if God if we walked in that manner!

  • Therefore, dear brothers and sisters, you have no obligation to do what your sinful nature urges you to do. (Romans 8:12 NLT). Everyday is battle for me to living according to the spirit. I really struggle with just releasing my control. At times I’m able to pray and ask God how to react in situations, but then other times my mind just starts thinking everything that goes against the word of God. It’s like I continually have to place my thoughts under subjection, minute by minute. I know that living by the spirit is a process, it’s like when I feel like The Lord and I take ten steps forward I say something or think something that just tears me up! But I guess that’s why Christ’s grade is sufficient! Lord help me to be more like you

    • Leah

      Shandy, thanks for being so open. Seriously, if we are honest..most of us struggle with variations of what you wrote. I guess I'm saying that so you know you're not alone in that challenge. Praise God the Father that he knew us, his children, well enough to know we would need His Son and the Holy Spirit to lean on..I find that both amazing and humbling.

      • Shandy

        I completely agree! I have to remember that without Christ I am nothing, and I know if I keep depending on his Spirit I will be good! Thank you for your words of encouragement!

    • provs31gal


      I love your comment because you are not alone in your feelings. It is a constant struggle with me to walk in God's word especially when I am frustrated with someone or something and I find myself thinking thoughts that I have no business thinking and it also tears me to pieces. I sometimes feel that I am not striving enough to be more like God and I feel it strongly. I am so glad that He does not condemn me for the things I have said or the things I have thought or have done because honestly I would be in a world of hurt! THANK YOU LORD FOR YOUR GRAVE AND MERCY ON ME!!!

  • Charise Christianson

    When I ponder on "therefore there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus…" I am pretty much speechless at God's love and mercy especially when I know what I should be condemned for. I am exceedingly glad and so incredibly thankful for Jesus and that He came for me.

  • I still struggle to constantly remind myself that 'it is done'. There is nothing I can or should to to win God's favor or approval. He loves me and has shown that love in a way I can never repay or equal.

  • How amazing that what the law was powerless to do God did through His son – not by works so that no man can boast

  • Marti Williams

    So grateful to be free from religious legalism! But still struggle with it every day! Waiting to be forever free….

  • Brittany

    This is something I didn't know before… my heart has been set free through the love and glory of our amazing, AMAZING Lord.

  • Patsy A Harger

    It is with a sign of relief when I came to understand that I, Patsy, did not have to’get it rght’ to be loved by God.

  • How freeing to know that there is now no condemnation to those who are in Christ Jesus. There are some that don't know that yet and are trying to live by the law, and not the grace and mercy that our Lord has obtained for us.

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