Commands of Christ: 74

Keep the commandments.

Now someone approached him and said, “Teacher, what good must I do to gain eternal life?”  He answered him, “Why do you ask me about the good?  There is only One who is good.  If you wish to enter into life, keep the commandments.”  He asked him, “Which ones?” And Jesus replied, “‘You shall not kill; you shall not commit adultery; you shall not steal; you shall not bear false witness;  honor your father and your mother’; and ‘you shall love your neighbor as yourself.’” Matthew 19:16-19

As he was setting out on a journey, a man ran up, knelt down before him, and asked him, “Good teacher, what must I do to inherit eternal life?”  Jesus answered him, “Why do you call me good?  No one is good but God alone.  You know the commandments: ‘You shall not kill; you shall not commit adultery; you shall not steal; you shall not bear false witness; you shall not defraud; honor your father and your mother.’” Mark 10:17-19

An official asked him this question, “Good teacher, what must I do to inherit eternal life?”  Jesus answered him, “Why do you call me good?  No one is good but God alone.  You know the commandments, ‘You shall not commit adultery; you shall not kill; you shall not steal; you shall not bear false witness; honor your father and your mother.’”  Luke 18:18-20

In Matthew 5:17-20 Jesus said,“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.  For truly I tell you, until heaven and earth disappear, not the smallest letter, not the least stroke of a pen, will by any means disappear from the Law until everything is accomplished.  Therefore anyone who sets aside one of the least of these commands and teaches others accordingly will be called least in the kingdom of heaven, but whoever practices and teaches these commands will be called great in the kingdom of heaven.  For I tell you that unless your righteousness surpasses that of the Pharisees and the teachers of the law, you will certainly not enter the kingdom of heaven.”

In our day, many religious teachers are denying the validity of these commands in the name of “good theology.”  It is true enough that we are not under law but under grace.  It is true enough that we cannot and will not earn salvation by obeying these commands.  But what so many fail to recognize is that if we recognize all that Christ has done for us, and if we walk in the power and guidance of the Holy Spirit Whom He gives us, our love and gratitude and Spirit-filled life will result in a life that surpasses these commands.  We will not only obey them but we will go beyond them.  Obeying them out of love and gratitude is the least we can do.  Keep the commandments.  Teach the commandments.  Do it from a Spirit-filled life of love and gratitude.