RIGHTEOUSNESS & PEACE
“Think not that I am come to destroy the law, or the prophets:
I am not come to destroy, but to fulfill”
II CHRONICLES 3:3
Contrary to much of the teaching today Jesus did not come to abolish the Law. As we read in the above scripture He came to fulfill it. His purpose in coming into our hearts is to the same end; to fulfill the righteousness of the law through the operation of His life within us. The purpose of God has not changed throughout eternity. Jesus is the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world. His Holiness and Righteousness demand holiness and righteousness from all of His creation. His Mercy and Grace provide the means by which His Righteousness is satisfied WITHOUT compromise.
“Mercy and truth are met together;
righteousness and peace have kissed each other”
We see in this Psalm that, in God, Mercy and Truth meet together WITHOUT compromise; the Righteousness of God is of such a nature that it is altogether in harmony with Peace. The only place in all of God’s creation that Mercy and Truth meet without one being diminished is in the Person of JESUS CHRIST. In the lives of the Pharisees the carnal ministration of the Law was ministered without mercy. In the days of Eli the Priest truth was compromised for the sake of a fraudulent mercy. Wherever religion is there will be the misapplication of one for the sake of the other. However in Christ we see the perfect flow of truth in the New Testament where Grace and Truth meet in total fulfillment…
“And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us,
(and we beheld his glory,
the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,)
full of grace and truth”
We are told in the New Testament that the Law is Spiritual (Romans 7:14-15). The problem is we are not spiritual by nature thus making it impossible to meet or fulfill its rigorous demands. Romans 7 is the description of us seeking to live a life in the Spirit without the resources of the living Christ. It is a life of futility and discouragement. Romans 8, however, is the description of the life of a believer who has or is finding in HIM the LIFE to live and walk in His Spirit! The way out of Romans 7 is to move on into the resources of HIS LIFE in us as revealed in Romans 8.
In Romans 8 Paul transitions from Romans 7 by introducing us to the LAW OF THE SPIRIT OF LIFE IN CHRIST JESUS. It is a law that is Life. Just as gravity is a law that binds me to the earth, this LAW of Life in Christ Jesus binds me to HIM. It brings the glory of His Life that lifts us out of the Law of sin and death and causes us to sit in heavenly places. The purpose of this LAW OF LIFE is….
“For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus
has made me free from the law of sin and death.
For what the law could not do in that it was weak through the flesh,
God did by sending His own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh,
on account of sin: He condemned sin in the flesh,
that the righteous requirement of the law might be fulfilled in us
who do not walk according to the flesh but according to the Spirit”
We can clearly see that God’s purpose from the beginning was for us (who by faith have been born out of the darkness of this world into His Glorious Light) to be righteous as HE is righteousness; to be Holy for HE is Holy (1PETER 1:15-16). In a large segment of the Christian church we hear that this righteousness is simply a legal declaration. If that is so why does Romans 8:4 declare unto us that “the righteousness requirement of the law MIGHT be fulfilled in US WHO WALK NOT ACCORDING TO THE FLESH BUT ACCORDING TO THE SPIRIT”? This righteousness IS to find fulfillment in us but it requires a walk in and by the Spirit of Christ.
The reason for the bringing in of the New Covenant was not to abandon the former purposes but to introduce us to the means and provision of God. It is for us to know of this blessed righteousness that cannot be attained to by the works of the flesh (the will or the energies of men) that we may grow in the righteousness which is the product and the offspring of FAITH. For by faith we have access into THIS GRACE wherein we stand!!! (Romans 5:1-2) How good are His ways and His Mercy towards us.
“For the law made nothing perfect,
but the bringing in of a better hope did;
by the which we draw nigh unto God”
“Blessed are they which do hunger and thirst
after righteousness: for they shall be filled”