For what the law could not do, in that it was weak through the flesh, God sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, and for sin, condemned sin in the flesh: that the righteousness of the law might be fulfilled in us, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit. Romans 8:3, 4.
The law reveals to man his sins, but it provides no remedy. While it promises life to the obedient, it declares that death is the portion of the transgressor. The gospel of Christ alone can free him from the condemnation or the defilement of sin. He must exercise repentance toward God, whose law has been transgressed; and faith in Christ, His atoning sacrifice. Thus he obtains “remission of sins that are past” and becomes a partaker of the divine nature. He is a child of God, having received the spirit of adoption, whereby he cries: “Abba, Father”!
Is he now free to transgress God's law? Says Paul: “Do we then make void the law through faith? God forbid: yea, we establish the law” (Romans 3:31). “How shall we, that are dead to sin, live any longer therein?” (chap. 6:2). And John declares: “This is the love of God, that we keep His commandments: and His commandments are not grievous” (1 John 5:3). In the new birth the heart is brought into harmony with God, as it is brought into accord with His law. When this mighty change has taken place in the sinner, he has passed from death unto life, from sin unto holiness, from transgression and rebellion to obedience and loyalty. The old life of alienation from God has ended; the new life of reconciliation, of faith and love, has begun. Then “the righteousness of the law” will “be fulfilled in us, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit” (Romans 8:4). And the language of the soul will be: “O how love I thy law! it is my meditation all the day” (Psalm 119:97).
“The law of the Lord is perfect, converting the soul” (Psalm 19:7). Without the law, men have no just conception of the purity and holiness of God or of their own guilt and uncleanness. They have no true conviction of sin and feel no need of repentance. Not seeing their lost condition as violators of God's law, they do not realize their need of the atoning blood of Christ. The hope of salvation is accepted without a radical change of heart or reformation of life. Thus superficial conversions abound, and multitudes are joined to the church who have never been united to Christ.... By the Word and the Spirit of God are opened to men the great principles of righteousness embodied in His law.—The Great Controversy, 467-469.
From Reflecting Christ - Page 47
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