The King’s Law May 20-24

In Jesus’ day, two prominent realities organized Jewish life, the Temple and Torah. At the Temple, sacrifices were made, feasts celebrated, and worship offered. Through the Torah, God instructed His people to live holy lives by keeping His Commandments. Over time, Israel’s religious leaders developed extensive and complicated teachings for how the Law of God should be applied in specific areas. But as often happens, when human beings add to God’s law, we end up subtracting from it. Rule keeping and score keeping replace heart devotion. Following customs and traditions can’t fix your sinful heart. Only Jesus Christ, through His atoning work on the cross, can grant forgiveness of sins and a transformed heart. 


Day 1      Mark 7:1-13

Reflect: What is Jesus’ bottom-line message to the Pharisees regarding law? Do you recognize any area of your life where you are holding others to standards that you’re not keeping?

Apply:   How do you establish rules in your home or place of work? Are some of those rules negotiable? How do you decide? Is there evidence in your life regarding verses 8 and 9? 

Pray:    Father, behind Your every precept, help me see that You are a God who is for us, not against us. In Your hands, the Law becomes Your shield of protection for us.


Day 2      Mark 12:28-34

Reflect: With his question to Jesus, what was the teacher trying to ascertain? What does verse 33 mean to you? Why is the law “to love God and others” both hard and easy to obey? 

Apply:   When have you found yourself claiming to love God while not loving people? Which of Jesus’ commandments do you struggle most to obey? Why?

Pray:    Jesus, You cite the law of holy love. Love of God and love of others liberates us from self- serving observance into the light of love for God and others. This changes everything! 


Day 3      Matthew 5:21-26 

Reflect: Jesus peers beyond outward obedience (don’t murder) into inward heart realities (don’t be angry). How do you feel about this? Does this seem fair? What does it teach about law?

Apply:   Are there places in your life where outward obedience is covering inward disobedience? How are you wrestling with the law in your life with regard to God’s heart behind it?  

Pray:     God, forgive me for segmenting my life into separate pieces—for not allowing Your character to transform me. I want to be pure in heart and have You rule every part of my life.


Day 4      Matthew 5:17–20

Reflect: What is Jesus saying about the law? Are we held to all 613 laws given to Moses? Why? How do you define righteous living? How do the laws help us to live this way?

Apply:   How would you interpret each of the 10 Commandments according to their purpose? What does obedience to God say about us? How does your righteousness play out day to day?

Pray:     Consider your day-to-day influence with others. Ask Jesus about ways you can better reflect His character and righteousness.


Day 5      Romans 8:1-8 

Reflect: What does the righteous, or just, requirement of the law mean? How do law and freedom work together? What requirement enables us to walk in obedience? 

Apply:   How have you experienced “life and peace” by walking in obedience to the Holy Spirit? Would you agree that loving the Lord and obeying Him are inseparable? Why or why not? 

Pray:    God, help me to walk in spirit and truth, knowing that I have been set FREE and enabled to stand fast as I submit to the leading of the Holy Spirit. Work mightily to make me what You desire me to be as I live to honor You. 


Put It Into Practice!

Love sums up God’s Law. It is not only to be the motivation for obeying, it is to show in our actions. Insert your name in place of the word love and references to it in 1 Cor. 14:4-7.  How loving are you?