I Came Not to Abolish the Law, But to Fulfill It

This meditation is based on a passage for April 28, 2010 in the Daily Lectionary Year 2 from the Book of Common Worship for the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) (1993).

Text: Matthew 5:17-20

Reflection and Question: These verses begin the section on the law in Jesus’ Sermon on the Mount by emphasizing that He has come to fulfill the law and challenging His followers to exceed even the strictest Pharisees in righteousness. As we read this we know that a significant dynamic of Jesus’ life will be His conflict with the Pharisees who judged Jesus to be breaking sacred law. For Jesus to claim that He fulfills the law must mean that He understood law differently from the scribes and priests. Jesus broke many of the rules in Leviticus and yet He fulfills the law. How do we, His believers, do that too?

Prayer: Jesus, our Teacher, we pause to grasp that You expect us to exceed the Pharisees in righteousness. Inspire in us Your perspective on the law so that we may fulfill it and teach it as You will. Fulfill the law through us, we pray. Amen.