love is the fulfillment of the law meaning

My imperfect love now and my perfect love later will always be the fruit of faith that looks to Jesus, my only perfection. Paul the apostle tells his readers in Romans that love is the fulfillment of the law. Likewise, if the suzerain fulfilled his responsibilities outlined in the covenant, then he was showing hesed, or loving, the vassal. Make it your aim in all your use of the Scriptures to see and savor more of Christ. Lots of strange names, foreign rulers, and two books (originally one!) Or, in other words, love is the fulfillment of the Law. First, in the narrow sense one may think of the law as commanding perfect obedience which, if we could perform it by faith, would be our righteousness and our justification. Galatians 5:1: “It was for freedom that Christ set us free; therefore, keep standing firm and do not be subject again to a yoke of slavery. The Law is valid under the New Covenant when used “lawfully” according to Paul in 1 Timothy 1:8, but it cannot be followed apart from Christ. (10) Fulfilling of the law. There's nothing tricky in here. Be on a treasure hunt to satisfy your soul more and more in him. And therefore it is the new direction that the law was aiming at and what the new covenant promised. He did give us a “new commandment” (“A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another, even as I have loved you, that you also love one another,” John 13:34). . I heard his very words. For 33 years, he served as pastor of Bethlehem Baptist Church, Minneapolis, Minnesota. . Romans 13:8–10: “Owe nothing to anyone except to love one another; for he who loves his neighbor has fulfilled the law. —The form of the Greek word implies not only that love helps a man to fulfil the law, but that in the fact of the presence of love in his heart the law is actually fulfilled. For He who said, ‘do not commit adultery,’ also said, ‘do not commit murder.’ Now if you do not commit adultery, but do commit murder, you have become a transgressor of the law. . The law of Christ is not a new list of behaviors without but a new Treasure and Master within. They express His way of life, which is a way of love. First, when the fulfilling of the Law it is called the “law of liberty” it means that as Christians we pursue love in liberty from law-keeping as the ground of our justification or the power of our sanctification. He is saying that love fulfills the law. Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary Question: "What does it mean that Jesus fulfilled the law, but did not abolish it?" I mentioned last week that some take this to mean that Christ fulfilled the law for us when he obeyed it perfectly and died as the perfect sacrifice on our behalf. Instead,  love is acting or not acting a certain way toward another person. But we all, with unveiled face, beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory, just as from the Lord, the Spirit.”. Second, my imperfect love is the first fruits of a final perfection that Christ will complete in me at his appearing. ), Matthew 7:12: “In everything, therefore, treat people the same way you want them to treat you, for this is the Law and the Prophets.”, Matthew 22:37–40: “And he said to him, ‘you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind. Firstly, there is the most fundamental of all laws, the Ten Commandments. Denying the image of God in all humans reduces people to things and creates a straight line to abuse, because at the root of abuse is the de-personing of a person. Just before that he gives a few examples from the book of Exodus: don’t steal, don’t murder, and “whatever other command there may be.” Jesus said something similar when he was asked what the greatest commandment was: “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ This is the first and greatest commandment. But this standard of love is the life and power of a person who indwells us by his Spirit. Love, which is in a believer’s heart, by faith, fulfills God’s law. Here, the Apostle Paul makes the bold claim that loving one’s neighbor is both a summary and fulfillment of the law when he says, “Owe no one anything, except to love each other, for the one who loves another has fulfilled the law. Now I believe that is true. that are not always in chronological order? And then he focuses specifically on our walking, that is, our living, as the way the fulfillment will happen: “that the requirement of the Law might be fulfilled in us, who walk . Love does no harm to a neighbor; therefore love is the fulfillment of the law. For the whole Law is fulfilled in one word, in the statement, ‘you shall love your neighbor as yourself. 12 The night is nearly over; the day is almost here. . Verse 4 says the aim is “that the requirement of the Law might be fulfilled in us.” It does not say that the law is to be fulfilled for us. Answer: 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. What I would like to do is answer this question with a far-reaching summary of the relationship of the Christian to the Law in twelve theses so that we can clarify our overall position and then move ahead into Romans 8 without having to rebuild these things over and over. And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments” (Matt 40:37–40 NIV). Love does no wrong to a neighbor; therefore love is the fulfillment of the law. Love Is the Fulfillment of the Law - Towards an Understanding of Pauls Use of Torah for His Paraklesis: A Study on Romans 13:8-10. For those who are according to the flesh set their minds on the things of the flesh, but those who are according to the Spirit, the things of the Spirit. And so I will never have a whole life of perfection to offer God — not to all eternity. Philippians 3:8–9: “More than that, I count all things to be loss . James 2:10–12: “For whoever keeps the whole law and yet stumbles in one point, he has become guilty of all. and to God, the judge of all, and to the spirits of the righteous made perfect.”. Philippians 1:6: “For I am confident of this very thing, that he who began a good work in you will perfect it until the day of Christ Jesus.”, Hebrews 12:22–23: “But you have come to Mount Zion . This covenant God established is modeled on a type of covenant in that time and culture called the suzerain-vassal covenant. Love Is The Fulfillment of the Law November 5, 2016 John (HFJ Director) Leave a comment Many Christians understand the foundational principle that we are to love one another. So then, on the one hand I myself with my mind am serving the law of God, but on the other, with my flesh the law of sin.”, Philippians 3:12: “Not that I have already obtained it or have already become perfect, but I press on so that I may lay hold of that for which also I was laid hold of by Christ Jesus.”. We sign a contract to buy a house, to play for a baseball team, or to pay a cell phone bill. When Jesus was baptized, he went under the water for us — so that he might represent us, and so that we might be with him forever. The God who keeps watch over the nations, this God still speaks today. 5&6 these commandments are either obeyed out of the motivations of our hearts or they are not obeyed at all. We are working our way through a marvelous section of the book of Romans in which Paul spells out the Christian way of life. Different motivation One last thing I draw your attention to, and you’ll see it in verse 10. Christ does not cast off the Law … . But I don’t think that is the point of verse 4. “To fulfill” is not to dissolve the authority and application of the old covenant revelation; rather, “to fulfill” means to fill up the Law’s intent and show the goal to which it leads. Three times in this text Paul says, more or less, that loving your neighbor as you love yourself fulfills the law. If you have your Bibles I'd invite you to turn with me to Romans chapter 13. Because Christ fulfilled the requirements of the law (Romans 5:5-8; 8:1-4), we are no longer under the external law of Moses. All of our resources exist to guide you toward everlasting joy in Jesus Christ. His was perfect. The law gives instruction in the ways that one who loves will live. In short, love as the fruit of faith, which exalts Christ, is what the law was aiming at. He is author of. Love in this context has nothing to do with an emotional response toward another person, such as being love or simply really liking someone. I review the book here. Wherever you look in Scripture, look to Jesus. Therefore love is the fulfillment of the law" (Romans 13:8-10) Love is an incredible thing. If you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the Law.” (Compare Romans 7:4, 6. Love, then, fulfills the covenant obligations that God has given his children, or as Paul and Jesus said it, “the Law.”. Romans 10:4: “The goal of the law is Christ for righteousness to everyone who believes” (my translation). Benjamin Marx. Romans 8:30: “These whom he predestined, he also called; and these whom he called, he also justified; and these whom he justified, he also glorified. Galatians 5:13-18 For you were called to freedom, brethren; only do not turn your freedom into an opportunity for the flesh, but through love serve one another. 13:7-8). Where there is love, especially and really only God’s love, there will be, can be and is joy. Second, in the broader sense of the whole Pentateuch or the whole Old Testament, we may think of the law not merely as making demands, but as also providing a way for sinners to be justified by faith apart from works, and to please him by walking in love (Genesis 15:6; Romans 4:3; Galatians 3:6). Wretched man that I am! And you will magnify Christ in your life until he comes to complete the work he has begun. He spoke personally to me. Therefore love is the fulfillment of the law. The law proscribes harm to neighbor, love abstains from harm to neighbor, therefore love fulfills the law. On these two commandments depend the whole Law and the Prophets.’”, Romans 3:24–25: “Being justified as a gift by his grace through the redemption which is in Christ Jesus; whom God displayed publicly as a propitiation in his blood through faith. They have no promise. We realize that the law is part of God’s word meant for our good. "What is the law?" 8 Let no debt remain outstanding, except the continuing debt to love one another, for whoever loves others has fulfilled the law. For this, ‘you shall not commit adultery, you shall not murder, you shall not steal, you shall not covet,’ and if there is any other commandment, it is summed up in this saying, ‘you shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ Love does no wrong to a neighbor; therefore love is the fulfillment of the law.”, Galatians 5:13–18: “For you were called to freedom, brethren; only do not turn your freedom into an opportunity for the flesh, but through love serve one another. Romans 13:10, ESV: 'Love does no wrong to a neighbor; therefore love is the fulfilling of the law.' This timeline may help sort through the Persian rulers, Jewish leaders, and events in…. Very simple, really. That is true, I would say, from Romans 5:19. But that’s not the point here. Apart from Christ, we were so sinful, so wicked, so rebellious that Scripture called us children of disobedience. Love, then, is not about an emotional disposition; it is about acting in a certain way toward others—a way that is consistent with the commandments laid out in the Law. The Day Is Near 11 And do this, understanding the present time: The hour has already come for you to wake up from your slumber, because our salvation is nearer now than when we first believed. (Scholars call this fictive kinship.) In such a covenant, or treaty, a greater party (God, in this case) created a relationship with a lesser party (the people of Israel) that made them related to each other as if by blood, even though they had no relationship to each other before then. Romans 13:10, KJV: 'Love worketh no ill to his neighbour: therefore love is the fulfilling of the law.' What does Paul mean in verse 4 when he says that the aim of Christ’s death is “that the requirement of the Law might be fulfilled in us, who do not walk according to the flesh but according to the Spirit”? . They have no joy. The second is like it, you shall love your neighbor as yourself. In this way the Spirit of Christ will be at work to transform you into his image. For the whole law is fulfilled in one word, “You shall love your neighbor as yourself.” (Gal. The law of liberty is the leading of the Spirit, and “where the Spirit is there is freedom” (2 Corinthians 3:17). But one cannot love without the law being fulfilled in them. Love that fulfills the law is agape love. What Does It Mean to Fulfill the Law in Romans 8:3-4, John Piper is founder and teacher of desiringGod.org and chancellor of Bethlehem College & Seminary. Love does no wrong to a neighbor; therefore love is the fulfilling of the law. Third, my imperfect love is the fruit of my faith in Jesus who is my justifying perfection before God. Love Is the Fulfillment of the Law (What’s that mean, anyway?) We don’t look alike and we share no DNA, but he will be forever my son and I his father. Who will set me free from the body of this death? And I testify again to every man who receives circumcision, that he is under obligation to keep the whole Law. That is, we will be in covenant with each other. Verse 8b: “For the one who loves another has fulfilled (peplëröken) the law.” (Romans 13:8-10) According to Matt. Both Jesus and Paul are drawing on a common Old Testament way of understanding the concept of love that is rooted in the idea of covenants. But the difference between the law and love is that love works from the inside and the law works from the outside. How can the law that is NOT void be ended that we also have to establish and be doers of? The question today is very practical and tremendously important. 18For truly, I say to you, until heaven and earth pass away, not an iota, not a dot, will pass from the Law until all is accomplished. But before faith came, we were kept in custody under the law, being shut up to the faith which was later to be revealed. 2 Corinthians 5:21: “He made him who knew no sin to be sin on our behalf, so that we might become the righteousness of God in him.”, Romans 3:20–22: “By the works of the Law no flesh will be justified in his sight; for through the Law comes the knowledge of sin. If we don’t do everything we do with love, our actions have no meaning. In him, we are perfect with his perfection and in him we are pardoned by his blood. Galations 5:14: For the whole law is fulfilled in one word, “You shall love your neighbor as yourself.” In both places, the idea is the opposite of “getting rid of the law”—it really means to accomplish God’s goal, to obey his will in the best possible way. It means exactly what it says. Thanks be to God through Jesus Christ our Lord! First, when the fulfilling of the Law it is called the “law of liberty” it means that as Christians we pursue love in liberty from law-keeping as the ground of our justification or the power of our sanctification. Galatians 3:21–25: “If a law had been given which was able to impart life, then righteousness would indeed have been based on law. But the Scripture has shut up everyone under sin, so that the promise by faith in Jesus Christ might be given to those who believe. Most people in the world have no experience of lasting joy in their lives. For example, when my foster son becomes my adopted son, he will have the exact same inheritance rights as his brothers, and I will be fully responsible for him in the exact same way as I am responsible for my biological sons. 17“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 love is the great healer, and you can be great healers when you have great love. Therefore the Law has become our tutor to lead us to Christ, so that we may be justified by faith. The question we have to answer if we want to understand and apply what Paul and Jesus are saying is, “What does it mean to love?” Paul gives a hint when he supplies examples of love: love is not doing harmful things to another person. In the end, the law is fulfilled in me imperfectly because it was fulfilled in him perfectly. This love is not based on emotions, but an act of the will. Since when does God’s holy law and divine standard say, “Pretty good will do”? Second, when the fulfilling of the Law is called “the law of Christ,” it means that our pursuit of love is guided and enabled by the life, word, and Spirit of Jesus Christ. Love, then, is not about an emotional disposition; it is about acting in a certain way toward others—a way that is consistent with the commandments laid out in the Law. Charity never faileth" (1 Cor. Romans 3:31; Romans 2:13. But now apart from the Law the righteousness of God has been manifested, being witnessed by the Law and the Prophets, even the righteousness of God through faith in Jesus Christ for all those who believe.”, Romans 5:19: “For as through the one man’s disobedience the many were made sinners, even so through the obedience of the one the many will be made righteous.”. Russ is an author, editor, teacher, lecturer in Old Testament and Hebrew at Ohio Theological Institute. 8 Owe no one anything, except to love each other, for the one who loves another has fulfilled the law. For the whole Law is fulfilled in one word, in the statement, ‘you shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ But I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not carry out the desire of the flesh. according to the Spirit.”. According to "the love chapter," agape "beareth all things, believeth all things, hopeth all things, endureth all things. And the reason I don’t is that it won’t fit the wording of the text. Romans 8:4 does not say that the entire fulfillment of the law happens in us now. God’s laws show us how to love Him and how to love others. Other early Christians got the message. These covenants include things like a statement of who the suzerain was, the responsibilities of the vassal (i.e., commandments), and blessings and curses for obedience or disobedience.[1]. Love Fulfills the Law - Love Fulfills the Law Verse - Love Fulfills the Law Truth - Love fulfills the Law study on Love fulfills the Law quote, Love Is the Fulfilling of the Law meaning, Love Is the Fulfilling of the Law explained, Love Is the Fulfilling of the Law summary, Love Is the Fulfilling of the Law message and how the Love Is the Fulfilling of the Law message affects your Christian walk. Love does no wrong to a neighbor; therefore love is the fulfillment of the law." Love Fulfills the Law … 9 The commandments “Do not commit adultery,” “Do not murder,” “Do not steal,” “Do not covet,” and any other commandments, are summed up in this one decree: “Love your neighbor as yourself.” 10 Love does no wrong to its neighbor. . It is translated variously as “lovingkindness,” “mercy,” and “covenant faithfulness.” If the vassal obeyed the commands outlined in the covenant, then that vassal was showing hesed, or loving, the suzerain. ), “In the Image of God He Made Them”: How Genesis 1:27 Challenges Sexual Abuse and Misogyny in the Church. There are two primary ways of being in a covenant with another person: through adoption and through marriage. In the Old Testament book of Exodus, God established a covenant relationship with Israel. Love is what initiated God's redemption plan for us. We look to the Spirit of Christ for transformation so that love flows by power from within, not pressure from without. The Greek word for “fulfil” used in verse 17 means to make full or to give full meaning. A person can keep the law without loving. Romans 8:3: “For what the Law could not do, weak as it was through the flesh, God did: sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh and as an offering for sin, he condemned sin in the flesh. The Essence of the Law. First, my imperfect love is, nevertheless, real God-dependent, Spirit-enabled, Christ-exalting love that is based on my justification and not a means to it. In the modern West we are accustomed to contracts, not covenants. The acceptability of my life to all eternity will always depend on the perfection of Jesus offered in my place. Love, then, is not about an emotional disposition; it is about acting in a certain way toward others—a way that is consistent with the commandments laid out in the Law. (Rom.13) Of course, this is referring to the second division of the Law -love for your fellow man and does not nullify Jesus’ teaching of the first part that the first Commandment to love the Lord is the greatest of them all. In a word, hesed. For I do not do what I want, but I do the very thing I hate.”, Romans 7:19: “For I do not do the good I want, but the evil I do not want is what I keep on doing.”, Romans 7:23–25: “I see a different law in the members of my body, waging war against the law of my mind and making me a prisoner of the law of sin which is in my members. 5:14) If Paul is using first idiomatic sense of “fulfill the Torah” (discussed in part 1), he is saying that love is the supreme interpretation of the Torah–the ultimate summation of everything that God has taught in the Scriptures. And it is foundational for everything. so that I may gain Christ, and may be found in him, not having a righteousness of my own derived from the Law, but that which is through faith in Christ, the righteousness which comes from God on the basis of faith.”, Philippians 1:11: “Having been filled with the fruit of righteousness which comes through Jesus Christ, to the glory and praise of God.”. Fulfilling the law as per Matthew 5:17 does not mean to abolish. As we talk about the Law and how Jesus fulfills it’s crucial to understand how it relates to us as Christians today. You have been severed from Christ, you who are seeking to be justified by law; you have fallen from grace.”, 2 Corinthians 3:17–18: “Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty. PDF. Pastor Andy Stanley recently published an article in Christianity Today called “ Jesus Ended the Old Covenant Once and for All ” which is based on the idea that to “fulfill the Law” means “to bring it to an end.” 1 An honest reader can’t avoid noticing that this interpretation seems strained. In both cases people who are not related to each other by blood become related to each other by law, and it is as if the people in the covenant together are related by blood. And specifically, how can any of my “walking” by the Spirit — which is always imperfect in this life — be said to fulfill God’s law which is holy and just and good. For what the Law could not do, weak as it was through the flesh, God did: sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh and as an offering for sin, he condemned sin in the flesh, so that the requirement of the Law might be fulfilled in us, who do not walk according to the flesh but according to the Spirit. 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