One of the amazing results of God’s grace is that it changes our relationship to God’s Law. The Law “is holy, and the commandment holy and just and good” (Romans 7:12). This Law, summarized in the Ten Commandments, reveals the character and glory of God. It it sets forth a rule of life, teaching us to love God first and foremost, and to love others. We should walk in it with delight (Psalm 119:35) for it defines what we were created to do as image-bearers of God.
But if we are not in Christ, the Law offers no satisfaction; it can only condemn us. We can never fulfill its exacting demands. The Law weighs us down as a heavy yoke. It shows us clearly that “all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23). It beats us down and threatens us with the punishment of death due our sin (Romans 6:23).
The Law cannot save us, nor can it offer us a way to find joy and favor with God. If we are to walk in the Law with delight, we must have Christ. It is Christ alone who makes us right with God. In Christ the Law no more condemns us (Romans 8:1). His death paid the wages due our sin. His life provided for us a perfect righteousness. We are not saved by works or attempts at obedience (Ephesians 2:9) to God’s Law. In Christ our obedience to the Law is rooted in grace and expressed in gratitude.
The Law in the Old Covenant was engraved on tablets of stone; now in the New God writes it on our hearts:
For this is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, declares the Lord: I will put my law within them, and I will write it on their hearts. And I will be their God, and they shall be my people” (Jeremiah 31:33).
The Law in the Old Covenant was a “ministry of death” (2 Corinthians 3:7); now in the New it is our great delight, made precious by the shed blood of Christ.
“For I delight in the law of God according to the inward man” (Romans 7:22).
The Law That Once Was Placed by God
1. The Law that once was placed by God
On tablets made of stone
Is now engrav’d on ev’ry heart
Whom Christ has called His own.
These Words that once condemned for sins
And showed the wrath of God
Are now the Christian’s great delight,
Made precious by the blood.
2. The Lord is God and He alone
Is worthy of our love;
For He has raised us from the pit
To dwell with Him above.
The Lord is jealous of our love;
All idols He abhors,
But those, in Spirit and in Truth,
Who seek Him He adores.
3. How precious are the Names of God,
His nature they declare;
But those who use His Name in vain,
The wrath of God will bear.
And precious is the Sabbath Day,
The gath’ring of the church,
Who come expectant of their Lord,
His Word to know and search.
4. The Lord has said that we must love
And honor we must give
To fathers, mothers He has giv’n
To teach us how to live.
All murder, theft, adultery,
All coveting and lies;
These sins the Christian must forsake,
Lest him God will chastise.
5. All those who cast aside these Words
And spurn them in this day
Do show that they are not of God,
Despite what they may say.
For what are these Ten Words but this:
The will of God revealed?
For unto love to God and man
The saints are saved and sealed.
Words ©1992 Ken Puls
Download free sheet music (PDF) for this hymn and an arrangement of the hymn tune ALL SAINTS NEW for classical guitar.