- Not only murder, but hate
- Not only adultery, but lusting
- Not only stealing, but coveting
In street witnessing these are the commandments that are used all the time to convict the perishing sinner.
Here is another illumination for a layman like me: "...the commands of the first table are not to be kept for the sake of the commands of the second table, but rather the commands of the second table are to be kept for the sake of the first table." Example: if parents command their children to do something against God, the children should seek to obey God rather than men.
Going on to the grace of God we find quotes like: "So strong is the corruption in the hearts of the unregenerate that even the elect resist the saving operation of the Holy Spirit for a time."
There is nothing we do apart from Christ that is counted as righteousness. Romans 8:8 and Proverbs 21:4 and Pauls great confession in Philippians 3:7 , "But whatever things were gain to me, those things I have counted as loss for the sake of Christ." There is nothing a sinner can do on his own to save himself, or please God. Love is the fulfillment of the Law. The Law is a pointer to the Cross. The Law provides a conviction of sin. Therefore, the true meaning of Christ's death will cause the sinner to do a double take.
When I see the sinner's eyes change from a haughty look to a searching look, I know the Law is doing what it claims. It convicts! It is like a horse kicking you in the face, but the grace of God would allow you to live through it. Oh, it hurts, yet only long enough until I can inject the Cross' meaning into the lifeless veins and it soothes the pain that was caused by the sinner in the first place.
These partial verses in the Scripture all refer to love:
- He who has My commandment and keeps them...
- If you keep My commandments...
- This is My commandment...
"Paul as a Pharisee, thought that people should keep the Law in order to be saved. Paul as a Christian, he saw that people must be saved in order that they might keep the Law."
Paul was a man who spent many hours in prayer, and he spent much time recuperating from being stoned, kicked, shipwrecked, whipped, punched, etc. He felt that this was only the least he could do to follow in our Captain's shoes.
Many people in the church today think they are sharing their faith by saying "come to Christ and He will improve your life or what ever ails you or to improve anything at all." This is not love. No, love is hard work laboring in the fields of perishing souls. The fields of lost souls that are vast and ripe for the harvest. The sad part is that there is a tremendous laziness of the believers and people within the church walls. This can be discouraging to the few faithful laborers. Understand, please, that love cries out to those that are perishing. An example is a person calling out to a person who does not see a car heading in his direction that will hit him. Unless someone is diligent to cry out, and the man hears that cry to escape get out of the way, he will not hear in time to be saved.
The Giver of the crown of glory will say, "well done...", that would tell me that I had actually done something! This is not something that I would do to earn any merit. No, my salvation is nothing of myself. It is a gift of God, not of works which I have done.