Wherefore the law is holy, and the commandment holy, and just, and good (Romans 7:12).
CHAPTER 4 THE LAW
The law covers every area of life. Every person was required to keep the whole law. Because of sin in the heart, people were unable to keep the law and many times lost out with God. Jesus came to provide a way to keep the law. Today you are required to keep the moral law. These are kept through your personal relationship with God. Not on.y can your sins be forgiven but they also can be cleansed. You will see this more clearly, when you get to the chapter on the gospel of Jesus Christ.
Are you ready to apply the law of God to every area of your life? Let us begin your journey by reading Psalm 119!
Psalm 119 (ET)
“Blessed are the undefiled in the way, who walk in the law of the LORD! Blessed are they that keep His testimonies, they will seek Him with the whole heart! They also do no iniquity: they walk in His ways. You have commanded us to keep Your precepts diligently. Oh, that my ways were directed to keep Your statutes! Then I would not be ashamed when I keep all Your commandments. When I learn Your righteous judgments I will praise You with uprightness of heart. I will keep Your statutes. Oh, do not utterly forsake me.
“With what shall a young man cleanse his way? By taking heed according to Your word. I have sought You with all my heart. Oh, do not let me wander from Your commandments! I have hid Your word in my heart, therefore I shall not sin against You. Blessed are You, O LORD! Teach me Your statutes. I have declared all the judgments of Your mouth with my lips. I have rejoiced in the way of Your testimonies as in all riches. I will meditate in Your precepts, and I will look at Your paths. I will delight myself in Your statutes. I will not forget Your word.
“Deal bountifully with Your servant, that I may live, and keep Your word. Open my eyes, that I may behold wondrous things out of Your law. I am a stranger in the earth. Do not hide Your commandments from me. My soul has been broken for longing for Your judgments at all seasons. You have rebuked the proud that are cursed, who wander from Your commandments. Remove reproach and contempt from me, for I have kept Your testimonies. Princes also sit and speak against me: but Your servant will meditate in Your statutes. Your testimonies also are my delights and my counselors.
“My soul has cleaved to the dust. Keep me alive according to Your word. I have declared my ways and You have answered me. Teach me Your statutes. Make me consider the way of Your precepts: and I will meditate in Your wondrous works. My soul melts from heaviness: strengthen me according to Your word. Remove the way of falsehood from me, and grant me Your law graciously. I have chosen the way of faithfulness. I have held Your judgments. I have cleaved to Your testimonies. O LORD, do not put me to shame. I will run the way of Your commandments, for You will enlarge my heart.
“Teach me, O LORD, the way of Your statutes; and I will preserve it to the end. Make me to consider Your law, and I will preserve and observe it with my whole heart. Guide me in the path of Your commandments, for I delight in it. Incline my heart unto Your testimonies, and not to covetousness. Turn my eyes away from beholding vanity. Keep me alive in Your way. Establish Your servant in Your word, who is devoted to Your fear. Make my reproach which I feared pass from me, for Your judgments are good. Behold, I have longed for Your precepts; make me live in Your righteousness.
“And Your mercies and Your salvation shall come to me, O LORD, according to Your word. And I shall have a word to answer him who reproaches me, because I have confidence in Your word. And do not take the word of truth utterly out of my mouth, because I have hope in Your judgments. And I will keep Your law continually, forever and ever. And I will walk in a wide place, because I seek Your precepts. And I will speak of Your testimonies before kings, and not be ashamed. And I will delight myself in Your commandments, which I have loved. And I will lift up my hands unto Your commandments which I have loved; and I will meditate in Your statutes.
“Remember the word to Your servant, upon which You have made me hope. Because Your word has kept me alive it has been my comfort in my affliction. I have not forsaken Your law even though the proud have held me up to utter contempt. I have remembered Your judgments of old, O LORD; and have comforted myself. Horror gripped me when I saw the wicked forsaking Your law. Your statutes are psalms (songs) to me in the house of my pilgrimage.I have remembered Your name in the night, O LORD, and I will keep Your law. Because I have kept Your precepts this has become mine.
“LORD, You are my portion; I have said I would keep Your words. I entreated Your favor with my whole heart; be gracious to me according to Your word. I thought on my ways, and turned my feet to Your testimonies. I made haste, without delay, to keep Your commandments. The cords of the wicked surrounded me: but I have not forgotten Your law. All throughout the night I will rise to give thanks to You, because of Your righteous judgments. I am a companion of all those who fear You and keep Your precepts. The earth, O LORD, is full of Your mercy; teach me Your statutes.
“You have done good with Your servant, O LORD, according to Your word. Teach me good judgment and knowledge: for I have believed Your commandments. Before I was humbled I was ignorant, but now I keep Your word. You are good, and do good; teach me Your statutes. The proud have forged falsehood against me, but I will keep Your precepts with my whole heart. Their heart is as fat as lard, but I delight myself in Your law. It was good for me to be humbled, because I will learn Your statutes. The law of Your mouth is better than thousands of gold and silver to me.
“Your hands have made me and established me: give me discernment so that I may learn Your commandments. Those who fear You will be glad when they see me; because I have hoped in Your word. I know, O LORD, Your judgments are right, and in Your faithfulness You have humbled me. Let, I pray, Your mercy be a comfort to me, according to Your word unto Your servant. Your tender mercies shall come unto me and I shall live, because Your law is my delight. The proud shall be ashamed, because they falsely perverted me: I will meditate in Your precepts. Those who fear You and know Your testimonies shall turn to me. My heart shall be upright in Your statutes; therefore I will not be ashamed.
“My soul pines away for Your salvation: I hope in Your word. My eyes fail for Your word, saying, When will You comfort me? For I am become like a bottle in the smoke; yet I do not forget Your statutes. How many are the days of Your servant? When will You execute judgment on those who persecute me? The proud have dug ditches for me, which are not according to Your law. All Your commandments are faithfulness; they have falsely pursued me. Help me! A little longer and they will consume me from the earth; but I will not forsake Your precepts. Keep me alive according to Your mercy, and I will keep the testimony of Your mouth.
“O LORD, Your word is settled in the heavens for ever. Your faithfulness is from generation to generation: You have established the earth, and it has stood. To this day they stand according to Your judgments: because all of them are Your servants. If Your law had not been my delight, I would have perished in my affliction. I will never forget Your precepts: because by them You have kept me alive. I am Yours, save me; for I have sought Your precepts. The wicked have expected to destroy me: but I will consider Your testimonies. I have seen the end to all perfection: but Your commandment is very extensive.
“How I love Your law! I meditate on it all day. Through Your commandments You have made me wiser than my enemies: Or they (your commandments) are ever with me. I have more understanding than all my teachers: because I meditate on Your testimonies. I understand more than the ancients (with years of experience), because I have kept Your precepts. I have withheld my feet from every path of evil, that I might keep Your word. I have not departed from Your judgments: for You have taught me. How sweet are Your words to my taste! Better than honey to my mouth! Through Your precepts I gained understanding: therefore I hate every path of falsehood.
“Your word is a lamp to my feet, and a light to my path. I have sworn and determined to keep the judgments of Your righteousness. I was very much humbled: keep me alive, O LORD, according unto Your word. I beg of you to accept the free will offerings of my mouth, O LORD, and teach me Your judgments. My soul is in my hand continually: yet I do not forget Your law. The wicked have placed a trap for me: yet I do not wander from Your precepts. I have inherited Your testimonies for ever: for they are the rejoicing of my heart. I have inclined my heart to always perform Your statutes, to the end.
“I hate questionable thoughts: but I love Your law. You are my hiding place and my shield: I hope in Your word. Depart from me, you wicked doers: and I will keep the commandments of my God. Hold me up according to Your word, and I shall live: and do not let me be ashamed of my hope. Hold me up, and I shall be safe: and I will continually look to Your statutes. You have trodden down all those who wander from Your statutes: for their deceit is falsehood. You have put all the wicked of the earth away like dross: therefore I love Your testimonies. My flesh trembles for fear of You; and I fear Your judgments.
“I have done judgment and righteousness: You will not leave me to my oppressors. Be surety for Your servant for good: do not let the proud oppress me. My eyes have failed for Your salvation, and for the word of Your righteousness. Deal with Your servant according to Your mercy, and teach me Your statutes. I am Your servant; cause me to understand, that I may know Your testimonies. LORD, it is time for You to work: they have made Your law void. Therefore I love Your commandments more than gold; yes, above fine gold. Therefore I esteem all Your precepts to be all right; I have hated every path of falsehood.
“Your testimonies are wonderful: therefore my soul preserves them. The opening of Your words will enlighten; causing the simple to understand. I opened my mouth, and panted: for I longed for Your commandments. Turn to me, and be gracious to me, the way You do to those who love Your name. Establish my steps in Your word: and do not let any iniquity have dominion over me. Redeem me from the oppression of man: and I will keep Your precepts. Make Your face to shine upon Your servant; and teach me Your statutes. Rivers of waters run down from my eyes, because they do not keep Your law.
“Righteous are You, O LORD, and upright are Your judgments. Your testimonies, which You have commanded, are righteous and very faithful. My zeal has cut me off, because my enemies have forgotten Your words. Your word is very pure: therefore Your servant loves it. I am little and despised: yet I do not forget Your precepts. Your righteousness is an everlasting righteousness, and Your law is the truth. Distress and anguish have found me: yet Your commandments are my delights. Your testimonies are righteousness forever: cause me to understand, and I shall live.
“I cried with my whole heart; answer me, O LORD: I will preserve Your statutes. I called upon You; save me and I shall keep Your testimonies. I rise before twilight and cry for help: I hoped for Your word. My eyes are open in the night watches, to meditate in Your word. Hear my voice according to Your lovingkindness: O LORD, keep me alive according to Your judgment. They that follow after mischief draw near: they are far from Your law. You are near, O LORD; and all Your commandments are truth. Concerning Your testimonies, I have known of old that You have founded them for ever.
“See my affliction, and deliver me: I have not forgotten Your law. Plead my cause and redeem me: keep me alive with Your word. Salvation is far from the wicked: for they have not sought Your statutes. Many are Your tender mercies, O LORD: keep me alive according to Your judgments. Many are my pursuers and my enemies; yet I have not declined from Your testimonies. I saw the offenders and was grieved; because they did not keep Your word. Consider how I love Your precepts: keep me alive, O LORD, according to Your loving kindness. The sum of Your word is true: and every one of Your righteous judgments endures for ever.
שׂ SIN and שׁ SHIN
“Princes have pursued me without a cause: but my heart stands in awe of Your word. I rejoice at Your word, as one that has found great spoil. I hate and abhor lying: but Your law I love. Seven times a day I praise You, because of Your righteous judgments. Great peace have they who love Your law: and nothing shall make them stumble. LORD, I have waited for Your salvation, and I have done Your commandments. My soul has kept Your testimonies; and I love them very much. I have kept Your precepts and Your testimonies: because all my ways are before You.
“Let my cry come near before You, O LORD: cause me to consider according to Your word. My supplication shall come before You: deliver me according to Your word. My lips will utter praise, for You will teach me Your statutes. My tongue shall answer Your word: for all Your commandments are righteousness. Your hand shall be a help to me; for I have chosen Your precepts. I have longed for Your salvation, O LORD; and Your law is my delight. My soul shall live and praise You; and Your judgments will help me. I have wandered like a perishing sheep; seek Your servant; for I have not forgotten Your commandments.”
KEY 1 - The law covers every area of your life.
KEY 2 - The moral law (The Ten Commandments) is still in effect today.
KEY 3 - The law is outlined in Exodus through Deuteronomy.
KEY 4 - The law includes a homeland for the children of Israel. (See the book of Joshua.)
KEY 5 - The law cannot do anything with sin in your heart. (See Romans 7:7-25.)
KEY 6 - The law acts as a schoolmaster to bring you to Christ. (See Galatians 3:24.)
KEY 7 - Jesus Christ is the fulfillment of the law. (See Matthew 5:17-20.)
KEY 8 - The new covenant of grace, brought in by Jesus’ finished work of redemption, takes care of the sin problem in your heart. (See Romans 6:1-15.)
Chapter 4 Study Questions
Find the answers to these questions in your Bible in Exodus through Deuteronomy!
1. How was the law given?
2. How much of the law were the people required to keep?
3. Did the law support capital punishment? If so, how was it carried out?
4. Did the law cover personal relationships? Which ones?
5. Did the law have a set way of worshipping God?
6. How did the law deal with sex offenders?
7. How did the law deal with people who did not keep the Ten Commandments?
8. What were the laws concerning sacrifice?
9. What was the law concerning holy convocations?
10. Were there any laws concerning agriculture?
11. What was the law concerning the underprivileged?
12. What were the laws concerning marriage?
13. What was the law concerning slavery?
14. What were the laws dealing with the treatment of other people (foreigners or strangers)?
15. How did the law deal with accidental killing of people?
16. What were the laws concerning the priesthood?
17. What were the regular feast days? Could a person be excluded from these?
18. What were the laws concerning diet?
19. How did the temple figure in with the law?
20. What does Psalm 119 tell you about the law?
21. According to the diagram above, what are the three areas of the law?
22. What was the purpose of the law according to Galatians 3:24?
23. How did the law deal with witchcraft?
24. How did the law deal with the dress code?
25. What were the sacrifices of the law supposed to represent?
26. What was the clothing of the priesthood supposed to represent?
27. What were the laws concerning the Sabbaths?
28. How many Sabbaths did the law have?
29. How were the Levites different from the high priest?
30. What did the parts of the tabernacle represent?
31. How can the law best be summarized according to Matthew 22:37-40?
32. Are you supposed to keep the 10 commandments today? How?
Find the answers to these questions in your Bible in Romans through Revelation!
33. What does the law say about tithing? Do Christians tithe?
34. How does the Christian Sabbath differ from the Jewish Sabbaths?
35. How did Jesus fulfil the law?
36. How does Jesus’ way of salvation differ from the law?
37. How does Jesus’ way of salvation complement the law?
38. Are Christians required to keep the whole law? Which ones do Christians keep? Which ones do not apply to Christians?
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