James 1:22-25 ESV
“But be doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves. For if anyone is a hearer of the word and not a doer, he is like a man who looks intently at his natural face in a mirror. For he looks at himself and goes away and at once forgets what he was like. But the one who looks into the perfect law, the law of liberty, and perseveres, being no hearer who forgets but a doer who acts, he will be blessed in his doing.”
Not everything written in the Scriptures applies to us followers of Jesus Christ specifically, for some of it is Old Covenant teaching, and some of it was specific instructions to a group of people at a particular time in history under their specific circumstances. But even there we can still learn from these Scriptures, for all Scripture is profitable for doctrine, reproof, instruction and training in righteousness (2 Timothy 3:16-17).
But we must be careful that we don’t write off Scriptures which do apply to us, for what Jesus taught was mostly all New Covenant teaching, if not all, and what the apostles taught to the church was New Covenant teaching, and God’s moral laws were never done away with. What was taught in the Old Testament regarding his moral laws was repeated for us in the New Testament, under the New Covenant.
And just because we are under the New Covenant, and we are not under the Old Covenant, it doesn’t mean we are lawless. For Jesus Christ “gave himself for us to redeem us from all lawlessness and to purify for himself a people for his own possession who are zealous for good works” (Titus 2:14). And if we do not obey him, then when we stand before him one day he is going to say, “I never knew you. Depart from me you workers of lawlessness” (Matthew 7:21-23).
So, we as followers of Jesus Christ, who profess his name, must absolutely obey our Lord and to do what we are told we must do under the New Covenant. And if the New Covenant teaching repeats for us what is taught under the Old Covenant, then we still have to obey it. For we are not to be those who just listen to the word of the Lord, but we are to do what the word teaches us under the New Covenant. And it definitely teaches us we must die to sin and live to God and to his righteousness.
So we are not to be like those who hear the word, and the word convicts them of things in their lives, and they see themselves as God sees them, and they know what they must do to fix it, to make it right, but then they just walk away and they willfully forget what was shown to them by the Lord. But it isn’t that they don’t know. They do know. They just choose to not bring it to remembrance, and then they just claim ignorance.
Instead, we are to be those who obey our Lord in doing what he says to do, and who look into the perfect law, the law of liberty, which is the gospel of our salvation. For Jesus died that we might die with him to sin and live to him and to his righteousness (1 Peter 2:24). And he put sin to death in us who believe in him so that we will no longer live as slaves to sin but as slaves to God and to his righteousness (Romans 6:1-23). And we have the hope of eternal life with God.
[Matt 7:21-23; Matt 24:9-14; Lu 9:23-26; Rom 1:18-32; Rom 2:6-8; Rom 6:1-23; Rom 8:1-14,24; Rom 12:1-2; Rom 13:11; 1 Co 6:9-10,19-20; 2 Co 5:10,15,21; 1 Co 1:18; 1 Co 15:1-2; 2 Tim 1:8-9; Heb 9:28; 1 Pet 1:5; Gal 5:16-21; Gal 6:7-8; Eph 2:8-10; Eph 4:17-32; Eph 5:3-6; Col 1:21-23; Col 3:5-17; 1 Pet 2:24; Tit 2:11-14; 1 Jn 1:5-9; 1 Jn 2:3-6,24-25; 1 Jn 3:4-10; Heb 3:6,14-15; Heb 10:23-31; Heb 12:1-2; Rev 21:8,27; Rev 22:14-15]
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Wordless Book Song
Child Evangelism Fellowship
My heart was dark with sin
until the Savior came in.
His precious blood I know
has washed me white as snow.
And in God’s Word I’m told
I’ll walk the street of gold.
To grow in Christ every day,
I read my Bible and pray.
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