Tag Archives: Jews

From “Light and Truth: Bible Thoughts and Themes” by Horatius Bonar

The Christians Continuance In The Law.

“Whoso looketh into the perfect law of liberty, and continueth therein, he being not a forgetful hearer, but a doer of the work, this man shall be blessed in his deed.”- Jam_1:25.

It is of ‘blessedness’ that the apostle is speaking here; the blessedness of doing, not of believing, or rather, of doing as the result of believing. Paul dwells on the latter, James on the former. Both are to be kept in view. Blessed is he whose transgression is forgiven (Psa_32:1); and blessed is he ‘that believeth’ (Luk_1:45; Joh_20:29). But blessed also are ‘they that do His commandments’ (Rev_22:14); blessed are ‘they that keep His testimonies’ (Psa_69:2); blessed is the man ‘that delighteth greatly in His commandments’ (Psa_62:1). Let us see the apostle’s statement here.

I. The law-This is the Hebrew torah, the Greek nomos, the Latin lex, and the English law; all of them expressive of two great ideas,-a superior that instructs and enjoins, an inferior that learns and obeys. It touches our minds as instruction; and our wills as precept. Through these two it touches or operates upon our life. In some parts it touches more the former, as in the psalms, in others our wills, as in the ten commandments, though sometimes it is mixed, as in Proverbs and the prophets. We do not take up the question whether ‘law,’ as used by James, refers exclusively to the Sinaitic code. We affirm, however, that it includes these, as is evident from Jam_2:8; Jam_2:12; Jam_4:2, where two of the ten are specified, and the summary of the law is given, ‘the royal law.’ Plainly, then, the apostle refers to the moral law in his epistle. If any one say that James was writing to Jews, we answer, (1) Paul, writing to Gentiles, uses law in reference to the ten commandments (Rom_13:8-10). (2) This makes no difference, for they were believing Jews, members of the body of Christ.

II. The perfect law.-By this we understand the same as in Rom_7:12 : ‘The law is holy (as a whole), and the commandment (each of its commandments) holy, and just, and good.’ It is altogether ‘perfect,’ complete in all its parts; not reduced, or narrowed, or modified; fully unfolded; more fully now than ever; established (Rom_3:31); not destroyed; fulfilled by Christ, and to be fulfilled by us as His disciples. The law is now expanded to the uttermost, and exhibited in all its parts; held forth in all its fullness. Never was its excellence and righteousness seen so gloriously. Some of the excellent names applied to it are,-(1) spiritual, Rom_7:14; (2) holy, Rev_7:16; (3) just, ib.; (4) good, ib.; (5) fiery, Deu_33:2; (6) perfect, Psa_19:7. The 119th Psalm is full of expressions denoting in manifold ways its excellence and glory; its entire and divine perfection.

III. The law of liberty.-It is only bondage to the unforgiven. To those in reference to whom its penalty has ceased, it is a law of liberty. Obedience to it is true liberty. The greater the obedience, the greater the liberty. Disobedience is bondage. ‘I will walk at liberty, for I seek Thy precepts’ (Psa_119:45). Twice over in James it is called the law of liberty; for the law, fulfilled in Christ, and presented to us in the gospel, though unchanged and unmodified, is a law of liberty. In obeying it we are enjoying and exercising true freedom.

IV. We are to look into it.-This means stooping down so as to gaze closely into, as in 1Pe_1:12. We are to study the law, the whole law. It will unfold its riches to us. There is no terror in it now to make us shrink back. It smiles on us. Let us hide it in our hearts. Thus David speaks: ‘I will meditate in Thy precepts’ (Psa_119:15); ‘In His law doth he meditate day and night’ (Psa_1:2). ‘Open Thou mine eyes, that I may behold wondrous things’ (Psa_119:18). ‘Thy servant did meditate in Thy statutes’ (Psa_119:23). Psa_119:30; Psa_119:40; Psa_119:48; Psa_119:71; Psa_119:78; Psa_119:93-95; Psa_119:97; Psa_119:99; Psa_119:131; Psa_119:148. In the cross we see the law magnified and made honourable; let us then study it as thus illustrated and interpreted by the cross. The cross is a magnifying glass for revealing the breadth and purity of the law, yet with all that could terrify us taken away.

V. We are to continue in it-Looking and study is not enough. We are to abide in it, be molded thereby. ‘I do not forget Thy law’ (Psa_119:153). ‘I will have respect unto Thy statutes continually’ (Psa_119:117; Psa_119:112; Psa_119:102; Psa_119:93; Psa_119:83). It is not a look, nor even a compliance, nor many compliances; it is a continuing in the law that is enjoined on us. Steep yourself in its spirit; abide in it (Pro_28:4). ‘Thy law is within my heart’ (Psa_90:8).

VI. The blessedness of so doing-That man shall be blessed in the doing; not merely after the deed, but in the doing. In keeping Thy commandment there is great reward. ‘Great peace have they that love Thy law’ (Psa_119:165); that delight in the law (Psa_119:24; Psa_119:77). The apostle delighted in the law, found blessedness in keeping it. Obedience is blessedness. Each act of obedience is so. Fill the whole life with such acts, and you fill it with blessedness. Love is the fulfilling of the law, and each act is a flowing out of love to God and man. All acts of love are blessedness.

We are delivered from the law’s condemnation. We are ‘not under the law, but under grace.’ But shall we obey it the less? No, the more; for to this end we are delivered, that the righteousness of the law might be fulfilled in us. The condemnation of the law is cancelled, that the righteousness of the law might be free to exhibit itself in us, who are still ‘under the law to Christ;’ for the law is still good, if a man use it lawfully.

 

 

Prayer for September 14, 2012

Our Father in Heaven
I come to You, Father, Knowing who You are.
You are the Eternal God
Who reigns Supreme over Heaven;
Over all the earth and it’s people.
You are the Everlasting God
Who has always been
And will always be.
You are the One and True God.
The God of Israel.

Blessed be Your name, O God.
May praise and worship be Yours,
And Yours alone, for only
You are worthy to receive
Worship, honor, and praise.
You are the God of Perfection,
Of justice and holiness.
You are the God of Love;
And there is none other.

Father, I ask that Your Kingdom come.
I know that it has come already
In the hearts and minds of Your children,
And yet it won’t be fully revealed
Until our Lord and Savior
Jesus is come to reign
As You have decreed.
Until then, Father, I pray
That we, Your children, will be
About the business You’ve called us to.
Touch our lives and our minds;
Open our eyes, and give us ears to hear
So that we might truly be able
To know and understand
All that You want us to be and do;
And to do it as willingly here on earth
As it is done in Heaven.

Father, I thank You for this day,
And for all the ones before,
And I pray Father, that You will help us all
To look at each day as Your gift to us;
As another opportunity to learn
Who we are to be, and how we’re to live,
And how we’re to love
Our neighbors, our friends, our families,
Our enemies, and You.
Father, God, I pray that You
Would show us all
That we’re to love the unlovable;
That we’re to serve those undeserving,
That we’re to support and encourage
And pray for those over us.

Father, God, I pray for those in the Middle East,
For all those people, those individuals, Your children
Who are suffering at the hands of those who hate.
Father, please don’t let us forget
That You love all people.
Help us to love those who are in the grip of evil;
Who are being used and manipulated
To bring harm and destruction
To the innocent, and
Those who have done them no harm.

Father, God,
I pray You place a hedge of protection over
All Your children.
Lead, guide and direct them, Father,
To a place of safety and shelter.
Stay the hand of those who wish
To persecute them, and send to them
Those who can bring them aid and relief
From the terrible trials
They’re enduring.

Heavenly Father,
I pray that You will be with Your people, Israel,
And I pray that You will strengthen them;
That You will give them wisdom, and courage;
And, that You will remind all nations
Of Your promise to bless those
Who bless them,
And curse those who curse them.
Father, I pray that You would use
Your children to remind
Our men and women in leadership
That to not stand with Israel
Is to stand against You.
Turn us from this path, Father,
And help us, Your children,
To restore our devotion to
Your chosen people, and to show them
Your love, and to reassure them
Of our commitment and willingness
To help and stand with them.

Father, I ask You to be with Your children
In this country You’ve blessed so much.
Father, You have blessed us, and
Made us a nation like no other.
You have made us great
As You have made Israel great,
But Father remind us
That our greatness
Came through our love and commitment
To You, and Your chosen people;
The nation of Israel.

I ask You, Father, to touch the lives
Of Your Servants in this country.
I pray Father, that You would create a fire
Within the hearts and minds of all
Those who preach and teach Your Holy Word.
Father, make us stand, and declare
Your Holy Word in all it’s truth.
Use the Godly men of this country, Father,
To remind Your children,
And the people of this nation that
You are Supreme;
That You are Sovereign, and
All powerful, and
That You are as much a God
Of justice and truth,
As You are a God of mercy and love.

Father, I ask You to please forgive me
Of my sins, and the sins of this nation.
We have sinned against You.
We have spit in Your face.
We have taken the blessings You’ve given us,
And laid claim to them as if
We gave them to ourselves.
We praise You with our lips,
But our hearts are far removed
From You, and Your Holy Word.
Father, God,
Have mercy upon us.
Restore us.
Do not let us go as those nations
Have gone who have
Come against You and Your people.

Father, God, we don’t deserve
All that You have given us.
We don’t deserve Your love.
We do deserve Your wrath;
Your anger.
For our denial,
For our refusal,
For our failure,
To stand for those things
That are precious in Your sight.
We have killed the unborn;
We have taken every form of
Wickedness and vice
And celebrate them, and promote them,
And call them entertainment.
We encourage greed
And self-worth,
And self-love,
And the growth of self
To the point where we can not
See beyond ourselves.

Father, forgive us.
Turn Your anger from us, and cleanse us.
Create in me, and our nation a new heart.
Teach us to follow You,
Teach us what it is to have faith and trust.
Show us that they are more
Than mere words,
But that they are actions
Which must be taken and shown,
And above all, lived.
Keep us from the temptations
That are all around us.
All the evil that beckons us
To turn our eyes from You,
And that stops up our ears
So that we can not
Hear Your voice.
Deliver us from the evil that
Threatens to overwhelm us.
Let us not be taken
In by clever lies,
And the praise of false lips,
And the promise of
Things that will never come.

Let us rejoice in You;
Let us glory in the fact that we
Know You, and that You
Are our Almighty God;
That Your Kingdom is even now
Being established,
And that You are and will forever
Be all Powerful,
And that Your Glory
Will one future day outshine the sun,
And we shall live in it’s light
Throughout Eternity.

In Jesus name, I pray. Amen.