Unlimited: The Purpose of the Law
Jun 13, 2022 554
rather, through the law we become conscious of our sin (Romans 3:20(b)).
Paul here makes clear that instead of helping us to be righteous, the purpose of the law is that we may have an awareness of sin.
Most people have a mirror in their bathroom, as well as soap. We go to the bathroom and look in the mirror to see where we have dirt on our face, and then we use the soap to remove it.
The purpose of the law is that we may have an awareness of sin.
At a basic level, the mirror is God’s law, and the soap is the cleansing blood of Jesus. The “soap” is offered to you as a free gift when you trust in him. We may also call it the grace of God. You don’t look into the soap and try to clean your face with a mirror, but that’s what people try to do. Just because the mirror highlights the dirt on your face, it doesn’t mean it can clean it. Instead, the purpose of the mirror (the law) is to make the dirt evident, and the purpose of the soap (God’s grace) is to cleanse you.
This is the purpose that the Bible ascribes to the law: that “we become conscious of our sin.” The law of God is “holy, just and good” in its correct function, but when you use it for other purposes in your life, the law is deadly.
Right now, go and look at yourself in the mirror. That’s the law. Wash your face with soap. That’s the blood of Jesus. The law doesn’t make you clean, only the imputed righteousness of Christ can do that. Learn the lesson well. Remember it every morning when you wash.
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