Bible Society of South Africa

Get to the point of God’s will – 25 August 2022

By Fanie Richter

Bible text(s)

Teaching about the Law

17“Do not think that I have come to do away with the Law of Moses and the teachings of the prophets. I have not come to do away with them, but to make their teachings come true.

Matthew 5:17GNBOpen in Bible reader

20I tell you, then, that you will be able to enter the Kingdom of heaven only if you are more faithful than the teachers of the Law and the Pharisees in doing what God requires.

Matthew 5:20GNBOpen in Bible reader

What is the real principle behind the concepts of “righteousness” and the “whole law” that Jesus came to fulfil?

Here, with reference to “the Law and the Prophets”, Jesus is referring to the essence of what God means and desires of his people – through which he will be glorified and they blessed, and his heart will rejoice over them – as articulated in the books of the prophets. That being the case, the prophets constantly tried to guide Israel to obedience and faithfulness in accordance with the purpose of God’s will.

In Matthew 5, Jesus begins his Sermon on the Mount and uses examples of life to contrast the false and true interpretation of the law. Much of chapters 6 and 7 reflect this contrast.

In Matthew 5:20, he said that in the world as God intended it, we have to live by God’s will even more strictly than the Pharisees did – which also involved genuine love and reverence for him.

“Righteousness” is nothing but complete conformity with God’s holy will (cf Matthew 22:34-40, especially verse 37) in all you are and do – that your heart, not just outward deeds, is right as God meant it himself. And He knows our hearts. (Luke 16:15)

So beware, if your knowledge of the Word outweighs your obedience to God, you may be engaged in hypocrisy.

Prayer: Heavenly Father, help me to love with sincerity and reverence for you and my neighbour, as you intended. Amen

Bible Society of South Africav.4.16.20
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