What does the law of God require? If we want to live according to His Word, what must we do? The answer is as simple as it is difficult. The law of God requires our complete and perfect obedience to the Lord at all times. What is easy to define is far from easy to live. In fact, we can never do it. We can obey sometimes in some ways, but every one of us will fail to always obey perfectly.
Perfect obedience means no lapses. For this reason, every one of us is guilty of breaking the law of God. If not for the redeeming blood of Jesus, we would be eternally condemned. God’s law is perfect; we are not. But in Jesus, the holy God and Creator of everything sees us as perfect.
God’s law also requires we love Him with all our heart, soul, mind, and strength. We will have no other gods before Him. Nothing in life will be more important to us than He is. Everything we do will be to glorify Him and not ourselves. This is the greatest commandment of all (Mark 12:28-31). We place all our effort in glorifying Him, not drawing attention to ourselves. To obey God, to love Him fully, is to make our lives all about Him and not about ourselves.
We must also love our neighbor as much as we love ourselves. It is the second greatest commandment (Mark 12:28-31). Our neighbor is everyone with whom we interact, not just the people next door. It’s about the brotherhood of humanity, not only those in proximity to us. We are to show compassion and care to friends and foes alike, for they all have unsurpassable worth in the eyes of our Savior and Creator.
Whatever is forbidden by God must never find a place in our lives. This can be inconvenient, and if we’re honest, sometimes disappointing. We want to partake of everything this world offers, but everything the fallen world offers is not good for us. The Lord has given us so much there is nothing more we should ever want. It is only our selfishness and greed that causes us to look outside of the goodness of God for things to satisfy our souls. If we want to obey God’s law, we must abstain from forbidden things.
Finally, God’s law requires we always do what He commands. His rules are beyond our understanding, but they are all perfect and for our benefit. We can’t obey only when we feel like it or when it won’t cost us something. Obedience to God is a lifelong pursuit and requirement. What God has commanded, we must obey.
The world will despise all who live according to God’s law. It is a counter-cultural way to live, and we will forever swim against the stream. But this is what is required for those who love the Lord. We’ll mess up; we will fail. Thanks be to God, the blood of Jesus is sufficient to cover all our faults. This is not an excuse to disobey, but rather grace to cover us when we fail. Never forget He knows our hearts. He sees the desires within each of us. Discipline yourself with the Word of God so that you can live by it. Love the Lord with all your heart, soul, mind, and strength. This is what God’s law requires.