“God sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful ﬂesh, and for sin, condemned sin in the ﬂesh; that the righteousness of the law might be fulﬁlled in us, who walk not after the ﬂesh, but after the Spirit.” Satan declared that it was impossible for the sons and daughters of Adam to keep the law of God, and thus charged upon God a lack of wisdom and love. If they could not keep the law, then there was fault with the Lawgiver. Men who are under the control of Satan repeat these accusations against God, in asserting that men can not keep the law of God. Jesus humbled himself, clothing his divinity with humanity, in order that he might stand as the head and representative of the human family, and by both precept and example condemn sin in the ﬂesh, and give the lie to Satan’s charges. He was subjected to the ﬁercest temptations that human nature can know, yet he sinned not; for sin is the transgression of the law. By faith he laid hold upon divinity, even as humanity may lay hold upon inﬁnite power through him. Although tempted upon all points even as men are tempted, he sinned not. He did not surrender his allegiance to God, as did Adam.
To relieve suffering on the Sabbath is in harmony with the law of God.
The Pharisees accused Christ of breaking the Sabbath because he had healed a man upon the Sabbath day; but his words made it evident that he had not violated the command of God. He declared that they were ignorant both of the Scriptures and the power of God, and reminded them that if they had known what this meaneth, “I will have mercy, and not sacriﬁce”, they would not have condemned the guiltless. He carried their minds back to the law and to the testimony, to the words which he himself had spoken when enshrouded in the pillar of cloud, and revealed to them the principles of the law of God. He howed them that to relieve the suffering of either man or beast on the Sabbath day was in harmony with the commandment of God. He said to them: “What man shall there be among you, that shall have one sheep, and if it fall into a pit on the Sabbath day, will he not lay hold on it, and lift it out? How much then is a man better than a sheep? Wherefore it is lawful to do well on the Sabbath days.” He pointed them to the action of David, how when he was hungry, and they that were with him, “he entered into the house of God, and did eat the showbread, which was not lawful for him to eat, neither for them which were with him, but only for the priests.”
Christ fulfilled every specification of the law.
It was their own ignorance of the true import of the law of God that emboldened them to charge upon Christ the sin of Sabbath-breaking. Could they have found one action that violated any commandment in the Decalogue, they would have lost no time in condemning Christ. But it was because no fault could be found in him that they had to hire men to bear false witness against him. In their anxiety and determination to put him to death, they had to perjure their souls. Christ took human nature upon him, and became a debtor to do the whole law in behalf of those whom he represented. Had he failed in one jot or tittle, he would have been a transgressor of the law, and we would have had in him a sinful, unavailing offering. But he fulﬁlled every speciﬁcation of the law, and condemned sin in the ﬂesh; yet many ministers repeat the falsehoods of the scribes, priests, and Pharisees, and follow their example in turning the people away from the truth.
Christ removed every excuse from fallen man for not keeping the law of God.
God was manifested in the ﬂesh to condemn sin in the ﬂesh, by manifesting perfect obedience to all the law of God. Christ did no sin, neither was guile found in his mouth. He corrupted not human nature, and, tho in the ﬂesh, he transgressed not the law of God in any particular. More than this, he removed every excuse from fallen man that he could urge for a reason for not keeping the law of God. Christ was compassed with the inﬁrmities of humanity, he was beset with the ﬁercest temptations, tempted on all points like as men, yet he developed a perfectly upright character. No taint of sin was found upon him.
In our same human nature Christ developed a perfect character
Through the victory of Christ the same advantages that he had are provided for man; for he may be a partaker of a power out of and above himself, even a partaker of the divine nature, by which he may overcome the corruption that is in the world through lust. In human nature Christ developed a perfect character. “For verily he took not on him the nature of angels; but he took on him the seed of Abraham. Wherefore in all things it behooved him to be made like unto his brethren, that he might be a merciful and faithful high priest in things pertaining to God, to make reconciliation for the sins of the people. For in that he himself hath suffered being tempted, he is able to succor them that are tempted.” “Who in the days of his ﬂesh, when he had offered up prayers and supplications with strong crying and tears unto Him that was able to save him from death, and was heard in that he feared; tho he were a Son, yet learned he obedience by the things which he suffered; and being made perfect, he became the Author of eternal salvation unto all them that obey him.”
We are not hopelessly in bondage to sin and Satan
The humanity of Christ is called “that holy thing”. The inspired record says of Christ, “He did no sin”, he “knew no sin”, and “in him was no sin”. He was “holy, harmless, undeﬁled, separate from sinners”. He “tabernacled among men”. This testimony concerning Christ plainly shows that he condemned sin in the ﬂesh. No man can say that he is hopelessly subject to the bondage of sin and Satan. Christ has assumed the responsibilities of the human race, and the sins of all that believe are charged to him. He has engaged to be liable for them. He obeyed every jot and tittle of the law, to testify before unfallen worlds, before holy angels, before the fallen world, that those who believe in him, who accept of him as their sin-offering, who rely upon him as their personal Saviour, will be advantaged by his righteousness, and become partakers of his divine nature. He testiﬁes that through his imputed righteousness the believing soul shall obey the commandments of God.
The obligation to keep all of God’s commandments has never been removed
John pointed to Christ, saying, “Behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world!” The Son of the inﬁnite God does not remove from man his obligation to keep all of God’s commandments. But with Christ formed within, the apostle declares, “Ye are complete in him, which is the Head of all principality and power.” All our transgressions are transferred to Christ. While he who knew no sin was made sin for us, and the sinless is accounted sinful, the righteousness of Christ is placed upon the undeserving, so that the repenting sinner is declared to be sinless before God. But if a man blinds himself to the light, and hardens his conscience, and will not acknowledge himself as a sinner lost and undone, and in need of a Savior, his sin will remain. He does not believe in the only-begotten Son of the inﬁnite God. Like Cain he refuses to offer to God the blood of the Son of God. He refuses to acknowledge that “God so loved the world, that he gave his only- begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.”
The Father’s heart is open to receive all who return to Him
It is all-important that we understand the art of believing, that we individually accept the provision which has been made whereby we may have eternal life. Divine compassion was moved by the ruin of man, and God sent Christ into the world in order that his own arm might bring salvation to the human race, who were found in peril, in helplessness, and bound in captivity to Satan’s chariot car. God beheld man lost and ruined, and with no possibility of recovering himself. His intrusted capabilities and powers were perverted from their intended design, and degraded in the service of self, Satan, and sin. He saw men dropping the solemn realities of eternity from their reckoning, and, viewing the ruin to which they were hastening, divine compassion is moved for a fallen world, and provision for their recovery is made from the limitless resources of divine love. Provision is made that those who discern their apostasy may return to their allegiance. Those who return will ﬁnd the Father’s heart open to receive them, full of yearning tenderness and compassion towards them. Human agents are all too precious to God to be left without every possible effort on his part for their recovery. In the recovery of every soul, God will realize a peculiar joy. “Likewise joy shall be in heaven over one sinner that repenteth more than over ninety and nine just persons, which need no repentance.”
Evidences of Faith:
It was for the recovery of the law that Christ exhibited holy integrity in the midst of universal corruption, and manifested unwavering adherence to the right when truth, equity, and righteousness were objects of popular contempt and scorn. He lived out the law of God, thus giving fullest recognition of the supreme right of God to govern and to be obeyed even in a world sunken in unbelief and making void his law. The more severely he was tried, the more faithfully did he adhere to the truth of God. This must also be our experience, and if we are partakers of Christ’s sufferings, the more surely will we be partakers of his glory. The more decided the unbelief and corruption of the world become, the more clear and conspicuous should the integrity and loyalty of the followers of Christ shine forth. The more generally apostasy prevails, the more steadfast should the children of God stand in defense of the laws of God’s government.
Christ stood like a rock when wickedness swelled around Him
Christ is our example. When wickedness was swelling like a roaring torrent around him, he stood like a rock. He was a true, faithful, authoritative, unbending witness for God. What a character was that of Christ! By beholding him, we shall become changed into his image, from character to character. If we would indeed be witnesses for Christ, we must behold him, work as he worked, pray as he prayed. We must ﬁght the ﬁght of faith, clad in the armor of Christ’s righteousness. Christ declared that he did nothing of himself, but only that which he saw his Father do.
We must earnestly contend for the faith
Ministers of God, study the lesson of the life of Christ. Jude describes Christians as those “that are sanctiﬁed by God the Father, and preserved in Jesus Christ, and called.” To those he gives this salutation: “Mercy unto you, and peace, and love, be multiplied. Beloved, when I gave all diligence to write unto you of the common salvation, it was needful for me to write unto you, and exhort you that ye should earnestly contend for the faith which was once delivered unto the saints.”