Rules, Laws, Commandments? Who needs them?
Admit it. None of us really like rules or laws and especially not commandments. We are ambivalent about rules even when we know they are good for us.
If we are spirited, we feel the rules are restrictive, and some even feel they are offensive. We take pride in the fact that we already know how to to work things out, our own way, in our lives.
Why should we be judged according to another's rule?
But judged we are!
After all, God did not give Moses the "Ten Suggestions". He gave Commandments.
Our first reaction might be that no one tells me what to do, not even God, even if it is good for me. One might say, I don't need to be told what to do, I can take care of myself.
But can you?
You've read in Exodus about when Moses came down from the mountain after a long absence, bearing the tablets inscribed with the ten commandments. Remember what he found?
The children of Israel had lost all control, they were dancing wildly, and worshiping an idol, a golden calf. Their rebellion was open and defiant.
God had provided everything for them, freedom, protection, water, food, and they still turned their back on God.
The story of the golden calf helps to remind us that without rules we quickly become slaves to our passions--- and there's nothing freeing about that.
The story also suggest that when we are left unchaperoned, and to our own untutored judgment we are quick to aim low and worship qualities that are beneath us--in this case an artificial animal that brings out our own animal instincts in a completely unregulated way.
By including this story in the Bible, you see what God is doing here. He is revealing a truth about us, painting a picture, so we can easily comprehend. This is how God works!
He communicates in a way that we can grasp and relate to.
Who could turn possibly their back on a God like this?
Instead we need to turn toward God.
Obeying His Will will help us to lead fuller and freer lives.
“And if you will indeed obey my commandments that I command you today, to love the Lord your God, and to serve him with all your heart and with all your soul, he will give the rain for your land in its season, with the early rain and the later rain, that you may gather in your grain and your wine and your oil. And he will give grass in your fields for your livestock, and you shall eat and be full.
We human beings are evil and there is a darkness that dwells forever in our souls. We simply cannot be left to our own devices, untouched, unsaved, unbridled, and be expected to bloom into perfection. It will not happen.
Yet, with God's Help, we can rise above this darkness.
To rise above, to do good, to love ourselves and our fellow man, to become perfect, we need God every day. We need to study and meditate on His Word. We must be filled with the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit will help change our hearts, so we will want to obey God. We will want to do His will. We will no longer feel restricted, or offended.
We will trust God and His promises.
Trust in the Lord, and do good; so shalt thou dwell in the land, and verily thou shalt be fed.
Delight thyself also in the Lord: and he shall give thee the desires of thine heart.
As we continue to read the Word and pray our faith will grow.
Faith gives feet to the soul, enabling it to march along the road of the commandments. Faith is the oil enabling the wheels of holy devotion and of practical holiness to move well
C. H Spurgeon
Do you want to be comfortable and happy? To enjoy the journey do you desire cheerfulness rather than gloom? Then “have faith in God.” If you love darkness and are satisfied to dwell in gloom and misery, then be content with the misery; but if you love the sunshine and would sing songs of rejoicing, covet earnestly this best gift, great faith.
C. H. Spurgeon
Yes, rules, laws, and commandments will require sacrifice. Following God's Will requires sacrifice. Sacrifice pleases the Lord. We give up things here on earth to build up treasure in Heaven.
We sacrifice the pleasures of today for the sake of a better tomorrow.
We give our all for the sake of the better--offer up our life for the advancement of others-- allowing God's will to become manifest fully within the confines of our single mortal life.
This is what Jesus did.
Our goal must be the same.