No, there’s nothing biblical about Sylvester Stallone playing Judge Dredd, but it does fit this topic for one reason. His regular habit of yelling… “I am the law!” That’s because today’s reading was from Leviticus 19, one chapter of the law.
This section of the Bible can often be difficult for modern Christians to read and grasp because it seems so restrictive and demanding. Our picture of Christianity is not like that but there it is in the scriptures. Reading such black and white laws today can cause us to question if we’re to really attempt to keep these laws or not. Are we to pick and choose which laws to keep? How do we make the right call which one matter most?
These questions however are not new… in fact that very dilemma is what the Israelites of the time also dealt with. These Laws of God, delivered by Moses, were so specific at times and so black and white, they found it impossible to follow them perfectly. And there in lies the point.
Before giving the law, God said one thing to Moses, “And the Lord spoke to Moses, saying, “Speak to all the congregation of the people of Israel and say to them, You shall be holy, for I the Lord your God am holy.” (Lev 19:1-2) This one sentence is perhaps one of the most important statements throughout the history of mankind. You see, sin created separation from the Holy God and the ONLY way to reconnect with Him was to be Holy. So God was telling Moses what it would take to be Holy. It’s a tall order. So tall in fact that no man in history or ever in eternity can ever fully fulfill the law and be Holy.
The reason this one statement is perhaps the most important is because it sets up the very reason we need Jesus Christ. If it is impossible for us to be with God without being Holy, and the bar of Holy is so high we can never achieve it… we need someone to achieve it for us. God showed centuries of patience as He waited for the Israelites to come to grips with the fact that they cannot be Holy. Then He responded. “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but in order that the world might be saved through him.” (John 3:16-17)
Christ Himself made it clear what His purpose was. “Do not think that I have come to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I have not come to abolish them but to fulfill them.” (Matt 5:17) Since none of us could ever ‘fulfill’ the law, we needed Christ to do it for us.
So, if Christ fulfills the law completely… and His death and resurrection paid the price for all sins past, present and future… Why should we bother trying to be good? That is tomorrow’s blog.
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