Text: Exodus 20:1-17, Romans 8:1-4, Matthew 5:17
The Law of God That We In Our Own Strength Cannot Keep
We all know on a very rational level that we’re never going to achieve perfection in this life. Yet that doesn’t stop us from striving for it.
As Christians, our example of perfection is Christ. We study His words, we pray for wisdom and discernment, our hearts yearn for godliness. Every day we fall. Every day we bite the fruit and deny Christ.
God knows this, so he sent Jesus. “Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus, because through Christ Jesus the law of the Spirit who gives life has set you free from the law of sin and death.” (Romans 8:1-2) His life, his perfection, covers all our sins.
So if we are unable to keep the laws our Lord set before us, and if Christ’s life covers that for us anyway, why would we try at all?
For some, it’s a checklist. A way to show others how strong we are on our own. “I’ve never killed anyone, I’ve never cheated on my husband, I pray every single day.” This line of thinking, the “good works” mentality, negates the grace of God. It tricks us into thinking that we didn’t need Christ’s sacrifice of His life because we can be perfect on our own.
Our desire to be more like Christ should come from love and gratitude. Christ fulfilled the law because He loved us so very much. When you love someone, you want to honor them. You desire to make them proud, to try your best. We strive for obedience and ask for forgiveness in our shortcomings because we love our Father and His Son.
God gave us the ultimate gift of love by sending His Son to take on on human form and be put to death just for our sins. Let us prepare our hearts and give thanks to Him in this season of hope and remembrance.
“For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God — not by works, so that no one can boast.” (Ephesians 2:8-9)
Lord, as we prepare for the different parts of this holiday season, let us stop to remember your gift to us. We know that every day we fall, yet you still cover us with your grace. Thank you for letting the law, through Christ, become an act of love to you instead of a list of rules we have to obey.
Take time today to write and send a handwritten, anonymous note to someone you know, using grace-filled encouragement or words of comfort.
For an added layer of worship and study, we chose a beloved Christmas song for each day of our Advent plan. We invite you to listen to In The Bleak Midwinter today as we dwell on the truth of God’s word together.