Message Magazine’s Online Devotional for Sunday, January 21, 2018
This is devotional thought number 56 in our devotional series, God’s Promises are Sure!
“Think not that I am come to destroy the law, or the prophets: I am not come to destroy, but to fulfil. For verily I say unto you, Till heaven and earth pass, one jot or one tittle shall in no wise pass from the law, till all be fulfilled” (Matthew 5:17–18).
Consistency In Every Point
I absolutely love, love, love consistency (especially in good things). Can you tell? By God’s grace, we have consistently brought you the Word of God for years. One of the things I thank God for pretty regularly is that He is dependable. I know that the sun will be in position everyday I awaken. I know His Words are still as true today as they were when He first gave them to us. I know His promises are sure. I know that truth is still truth and lies are still lies. God is not fickle. He does not blow with the winds of change. Our God is stable and reliable. He’s good like that!
When Jesus taught during His historic Sermon on the Mount, He gave special attention to the consistency and persistency of His law and the teachings of holy prophets. He began this part of His discourse by demonstrating how shallow human interpretations of truth are. Especially is this the case with those who are self-righteous.
In a two-part description, Jesus taught that while we might think sin or righteousness are manifest by our actions, our actions are really a symptom or outgrowth of our thoughts. One with impure thoughts cannot actually keep a pure precept, in God’s estimation (the only estimation that counts).
If I slander my brother or sister in my thoughts, or harbor anger against them, I am as in danger of judgement as the murderer, even if I don’t physically kill either of them. If I look at a woman and begin to lust after her, whether I grope, have sex with, harass, or have a forbidden liaison with her or not, I am guilty of trampling the seventh commandment, which enjoins sexual purity even among single people. Since God’s law is to be written in our hearts, keeping or trampling of the law is done first in the heart, and may also be manifest in our words and actions. This is deep, isn’t it?
The Jesus haters (we all have them), had a habit, due to their affinity to holy appearances, of quizzing Jesus regarding the law and the rest of the Scriptures. Jesus, knowing their thoughts, struck at the root of their evil surmising. In case anyone present at the time was confused about His teachings, He made it abundantly clear that He did not come to destroy even the least little stroke of a letter in the law or prophets, until or unless it be fulfilled. If heaven and earth still remain (I told you God is consistent), so will the law and the prophets, until or unless they are fulfilled.
Shadows Give Way to Fulfillment
And, Jesus kept His word on this. He ever established the words that were given by inspiration of God; and even when certain elements were indeed fulfilled, He did not negate them. Jesus embraced and taught the truth related to the Old Testament system of intercession and sacrifices, until they were fulfilled at His death, when type met antitype. The sacrificial system was fulfilled in Christ. The shadow now gave way to the genuine article, Jesus Christ Himself.
When hundreds of Messianic prophecies were fulfilled at various points in His life and ministry, they remained as teaching tools for the generations to ponder until the Second Coming. The Ten Commandments, which are a transcript of His character and foundational to His government, continue as the consistent revelation of truth and righteousness. Love for God and humanity are a manifestation of the commandments, and will continue throughout eternity.
Why? Right will always be right. Wrong will always be wrong. How will we judge between the two without those ten holy words (commandments)?
We’re Still Here
As far as I can tell, heaven and earth remain; therefore, God’s Word remains as truly as it always has. God keeps His promises. You can trust Him to continue to do so. The mouth of the Lord has spoken.