Question: What is the law of God stated in the Ten Commandments?
Answer: You shall have no other gods before me. You shall not make for yourself an idol in the form of anything in heaven above or on the earth beneath or in the waters below—you shall not bow down to them or worship them. You shall not misuse the name of the Lord your God. Remember the Sabbath day by keeping it holy. Honor your father and your mother. You shall not murder. You shall not commit adultery. You shall not steal. You shall not give false testimony. You shall not covet.
Scripture: Exodus 20:3
The reformers believed there were three uses of the Old Testament Law (in particular the Ten Commandments). First, the law was meant to restrain wickedness. Second, the law was meant to demonstrate the guilt of man and lead man to Christ. In other words, as man realizes his guilt before God, he should seek his salvation in Christ rather than in his own works, which are filthy rags (Isaiah 64:6). Third, the law was meant to teach the will of God. Many people desire to know the will of God, but through the Ten Commandments God clearly states His will for all people. While Christians are no longer under the law (Romans 6:14, 7:6; Galatians 3), as God’s people, we seek to live out the law (Romans 3:31). We live out the law “not in order to merit God’s favor but out of gratitude for his favor.” Remember, God gave the law to the Israelites after He rescued them from Egyptian captivity. He did not give the law and demand they meet the law before He would save them. “The law was a response to redemption, not a cause of it.” In the same way, as Christians, our obedience to the law is a response to our redemption. (Adapted from The Good News We Almost Forgot: Rediscovering the Gospel in a 16th Century Catechism by Kevin DeYoung).
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