Jesus is the perfect example of what the Christian life is to look like. He not only preached the things of God, He lived as the perfect representation of the
There seems to be constant tension between the law and love where there should be none. Some feel that if they cease seeing sin through the law they will some how give it permissive license. However, Jesus knew full well the death produced by sin for He came suffer in our place for our sins though he committed none. Just the same Jesus was sent to, “to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim freedom for the captives and release from darkness for the prisoners.” He came to heal hearts and free and release those in bondage to darkness.
Only love can produce these results. Condemnation and invoking the law only serves to bring bondage not freedom. Every time Jesus refers to the Law and the Prophets he shows that they are fulfilled in love not abolished by love.
Consider the following passages.
Matthew –18 “Do not think that I have come to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I have not come to abolish them but to fulfill them. I tell you the truth, until heaven and earth disappear, not the smallest letter, not the least stroke of a pen, will by any means disappear from the Law until everything is accomplished.”
Matthew “So in everything, do to others what you would have them do to you, for this sums up the Law and the Prophets.
Matthew 22:36-40 "Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the Law?" Jesus replied: "'Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.' This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: 'Love your neighbor as yourself.' All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments."
The Law and the Prophets are fulfilled by Love. So why is that people think that responding to sin with love creates permissiveness and violates God’s law? By no means, the law exists because of God’s love and is therefore fulfilled by His love. Love fulfills the law because when you enter into God’s love through Jesus you are freed from the bondage of sin which was illuminated by the law. Morality becomes a byproduct of knowing Christ and not false righteousness of adhering to moral laws.
When sin is seen through love it is far darker and more real than when it is seen through legalism and the religious spirit. I used to think that compassion for the sinner excused the sin whereas condemnation of sorts would break them out of the sin. I didn’t think this consciously, but rather subconsciously. When God gripped my heart for the outcast and the sinners and replaced my judgmentalism with His compassion and love-- I started to see sin for what it really is: a dark bondage that destroys a person. I began to grieve in my heart when I saw people entangled in its web and I was then motivated by love to reach out showing them the love of Christ and the freedom from this disease in which they are so deeply entangled.
Love sees sin worse then legalism sees sin. Love seeks to restore, help, free, release the sinner from their bondages. Legalism seeks to condemn and bind the person to their bondage. The more like Jesus we become the more we should desire the restoration of the broken, the freedom of the captives, the healing of the hurting, etc. All of this will come out of our relationship with Him otherwise it is simply the works of religion. Religion is about law and Jesus is about love. The more we know Him the more love should abound.