Old Testament:

‘This day the LORD thy God hath commanded thee to do these statutes and judgments: thou shalt therefore keep and do them with all thine heart, and with all thy soul.

Thou hast avouched the LORD this day to be thy God, and to walk in his ways, and to keep his statutes, and his commandments, and his judgments, and to hearken unto his voice: And the LORD hath avouched thee this day to be his peculiar people, as he hath promised thee, and that [thou] shouldest keep all his commandments; and to make thee high above all nations which he hath made, in praise, and in name, and in honour; and that thou mayest be an holy people unto the LORD thy God, as he hath spoken.’  (Deut. 26:16-19)

Lets compare this important passage with the New Testament . . .

‘This day the LORD thy God hath commanded thee to do these statutes and judgments: thou shalt therefore keep and do them with all thine heart, and with all thy soul.’

  • ‘For I say unto you, That except your righteousness shall EXCEED [the righteousness] of the scribes and Pharisees, ye shall in no case enter into the kingdom of heaven.’  (Jesus, Matthew 5:20)(The Pharisees were very righteous EXTERNALLY, but their hearts were not in it.)
  • Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that DOETH THE WILL of my Father which is in heaven.’  (Matt. 7:21)
  • ‘And, behold, one came and said unto him, Good Master, what good thing shall I do, that I may have eternal life? And he said unto him, Why callest thou me good? [there is] none good but one, [that is], God: but if thou wilt enter into life, KEEP THE COMMANDMENTS.’ (Matt. 19:16-17)

‘And the LORD hath avouched thee this day to be his peculiar people, as he hath promised thee, and that [thou] shouldest keep all his commandments; and to make thee high above all nations which he hath made, in praise, and in name, and in honour; and that thou mayest be an holy people unto the LORD thy God, as he hath spoken.’

  • ‘But ye [are] a chosen generation, a ROYAL PRIESTHOOD, an HOLY NATION, a peculiar people; that ye should shew forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvellous light:’  (1 Peter 2:9)
  • ‘Follow peace with all [men], and HOLINESS, without which no man shall see the Lord’  (Heb. 12:14)
  • ‘Be ye not unequally yoked together with unbelievers: for what fellowship hath righteousness with unrighteousness? and what communion hath light with darkness? . . .  for ye are the temple of the living God; as God hath said, I will dwell in them, and walk in [them]; and I will be their God, and they shall be my people.Wherefore come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean [thing]; and I will receive you, And will be a Father unto you, and ye shall be my sons and daughters, saith the Lord Almighty.’  (2 Cor. 6:14, 16-18)

What has changed?  Not WHAT God expects of us–but HOW He expects us to do it!

We are no longer bound to the LETTER of The Law, but we are to keep the SPIRIT of The Law.  And as born again ‘believers’ who have REPENTED*, we have the Holy Spirit WITHIN us, to guide us and to EMPOWER us to say ‘no’ to sin and to live holy lives. God’s plan hasn’t changed.  The church is not a ‘new work’ He is doing . . . we are grafted into the ‘old work’ He began with His covenant with Abraham:

‘ . . . a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should shew forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvellous light:’  (1 Peter 2:9)

Lets walk worthy of that calling!

*Repentance is not just changing our ‘mind’ about sin . . . but changing our behavior towards it as well.  When a person has truly repented, sin is something they RESIST and do battle with.  It is not something they casually give place to in their life, or make excuses for.  It is something they battle with fierce determination.

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