Fulfilling the Law

In his epistle to the Romans Paul writes in the eighth verse of the thirteenth chapter, "Owe no man any thing, but to love one another: for he that loveth another hath fulfilled the law." And in the tenth verse he continues, "Love worketh no ill to his neighbour: therefore love is the fulfilling of the law." Without doubt, in the estimation of Paul, of all the graces of Spirit love was the chief. This is the more wonderful when we remember the hate with which the apostle, before his conversion, had persecuted the first Christians. He thought then, it would seem, that hate fulfilled the law; but after his memorable journey to Damascus, the revelation of the Christ having come to him, that fallacy was entirely reversed, and henceforth love was to take precedence in his life; the law of Love was to be fulfilled in all his dealings with his fellow men.

In stating the position which love should hold in the thought of the Christian, Paul was faithful to the teaching of Christ Jesus that the moral law is fulfilled in love to God and man. In the twenty-second chapter of Matthew's Gospel the Master's words to the lawyer, who questioned him as to "which is the great commandment in the law," demand whole-hearted love to God, and that one should love one's neighbor as one's self. After giving utterance to what is the very essence of his teaching Jesus continued, "On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets." Jesus did not seek to abrogate, by jot or tittle, the moral law; on the contrary, he saw it fulfilled by love to God and man.

April 18, 1931

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