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Gospel of Matthew – The Law and Christ

Our message is from Matthew 5:17-20 and is a very important and very divisive subject in the church. How do we understand the idea of fulfillment and the role of the law in the Christian’s life? What even IS the law? What is fulfillment? We will tackle this topic tomorrow, I hope you will be blessed. In the coming weeks we will be looking at Jesus’ own exposition of saying as he gives practical examples to drive home His points and to make sure we have clarity about the issue. The sermon outline is:

  1. Presumptions – Why does Jesus head off the Pharisees? (v.17a)
  2. Defining terms (v.17b)
    1. Law and Prophets
    2. Abolish
    3. Fulfillment
      1. Revelation of the will of God for man
      2. Predictive prophecy.
      3. Ceremonies and the rites
  3. The Persistent Relevance of the Law v.18+
    1. Pharisaical Outward Conformity to Letter
    2. Christian Heart Obedience
    3. What is our obligation?

Public Reading: Romans 8:1-17; Benediction: Numbers 6:24-26

Matthew 5:17-20

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. 18 For 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. 19 Therefore whoever relaxes one of the least of these commandments and teaches others to do the same will be called least in the kingdom of heaven, but whoever does them and teaches them will be called great in the kingdom of heaven. 20 For I tell you, unless your righteousness exceeds that of the scribes and Pharisees, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven. (ESV)

Romans 8:1-17

8:1 There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. For the law of the Spirit of life has set you free in Christ Jesus from the law of sin and death. For God has done what the law, weakened by the flesh, could not do. By sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh and for sin, he condemned sin in the flesh, in order that the righteous requirement of the law might be fulfilled in us, who walk not according to the flesh but according to the Spirit. For those who live according to the flesh set their minds on the things of the flesh, but those who live according to the Spirit set their minds on the things of the Spirit. For to set the mind on the flesh is death, but to set the mind on the Spirit is life and peace. For the mind that is set on the flesh is hostile to God, for it does not submit to God’s law; indeed, it cannot. Those who are in the flesh cannot please God.

You, however, are not in the flesh but in the Spirit, if in fact the Spirit of God dwells in you. Anyone who does not have the Spirit of Christ does not belong to him. 10 But if Christ is in you, although the body is dead because of sin, the Spirit is life because of righteousness. 11 If the Spirit of him who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you, he who raised Christ Jesus from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through his Spirit who dwells in you.

12 So then, brothers, we are debtors, not to the flesh, to live according to the flesh. 13 For if you live according to the flesh you will die, but if by the Spirit you put to death the deeds of the body, you will live. 14 For all who are led by the Spirit of God are sons of God. 15 For you did not receive the spirit of slavery to fall back into fear, but you have received the Spirit of adoption as sons, by whom we cry, “Abba! Father!” 16 The Spirit himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God, 17 and if children, then heirs—heirs of God and fellow heirs with Christ, provided we suffer with him in order that we may also be glorified with him. (ESV)

Numbers 6:24-26

24 The Lord bless you and keep you;
25 the Lord make his face to shine upon you and be gracious to you;
26 the Lord lift up his countenance upon you and give you peace. (ESV)