July 3 I Tuesday
“So the law was our guardian until Christ came that we might be justified by faith.” —Galatians 3:24
Many people wonder why God gave such a stringent set of laws in the Ten Commandments, so high in their demand that they are humanly impossible to keep. Is there a criterion that determines what the law should be?
There are two verses that speak to this. John writes, “Everyone who sins breaks the law; in fact, sin is lawlessness” (1 John 3:4). In other words, every time someone sins, they break the law of God, because the law is the standard by which morality is measured. Paul says, “For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23). If John says that sin is lawlessness and Paul that sin is falling short of God’s glory, then the law of God and the glory of God equal the same thing. But what is the glory of God? Hebrews 1:3 says, “The Son is the radiance of God’s glory and the exact representation of His being.” And John 1:14, “The Word became flesh and made His dwelling
among us. We have seen His glory, the glory of the one and only Son, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth.”
The Word made flesh is Jesus Christ, and what the world saw in Him was the exact replication of the moral character of God. This was not intended for Jesus alone but for all of us as we were created in God’s moral image. When Paul says the law came with glory, he is saying the law came to reveal His glory, which is the moral character of God.
This is why Paul calls the Old Covenant “the ministry that brought death.” The law represents a tangible expression of what God is like and can demand what is right, but cannot produce what is right. The law exposes our sin, but it cannot produce righteousness. Neither can it regenerate or sanctify us. It only exposes our weaknesses and failures, revealing how far from the moral character of God we are. At best, the law housetrains us to think and behave properly.
Many Christians never move past this Old Covenant mindset. They think the Christian life is about ought to and have to, believing they must perform well to be a good Christian. But Paul states the law was only meant to be our school master to bring us to Christ (Galatians 3:24 KJV). The law does not create a sense of frustration and failure to leave us there. What it does is make us aware that we are incapable of meeting the demands of the law so that we are driven to Christ, the only one who fulfills in us what the law demands.
Prayer: Almighty God, thank You for the law, for none would know Your redemption if it was not for the law’s reprimand. And thank You for Jesus Christ who fulfills the law in me.