From The Bottom Of The Heart

Blog, Discussions, Enmity, From The Bottom Of The Heart, God, Grace, Happiness, Law, Rejoice, Righteousness, Romans, Sin, Spirit, Work

Today I began reading “Preface to Romans” by Martin Luther(1552). I am reading this side by side with the New Testament book called “Romans.” So far it seems to have fantastic potential for deep contemplation, vibrant discussions and new revelations. When I came across these two quotations below, I had to begin to post some of the goodness. Below are two quotations from Martin Luther that shed light on why it is challenging to keep God’s law and how we can overcome this challenge so that we are infused with an illustrious appreciation and love for God’s law and His righteousness.

Why is it challenging to keep God’s law ?

“The little word, “law,” you must not take here in human fashion, as a teaching about what works are to be done or not done. That is the way it is with human laws the law is fulfilled by works, even though there is no heart in them.
But God judges according to what is at the bottom of the heart, and for this reason, His law makes its demands on the inmost heart and cannot be satisfied with works, but rather punishes works that are done otherwise than from the bottom of the heart, as hypocrisy and lies. Hence all men are called liars, in Psalm 116, for the reason that no one keeps or can keep God’s law from the bottom of the heart, for everyone finds in himself displeasure in what is good and pleasure in what is bad. If, then, there is no willing pleasure in the good, then the inmost heart is not set on the law of God, then there is surely sin, and God’s wrath is deserved, even though outwardly there seem to be many good works and an honorable life.”

How can we overcome this challenge so that we are infused with an illustrious appreciation and love for God’s law and His righteousness?

‘”The law is spiritual.” What is that? If the law were for the body, it could be satisfied with works; but since it is spiritual, no one can satisfy it, unless all that you do is done from the bottom of the heart. But such a heart is given only by God’s Spirit, who makes a man equal to the law, so that he acquires a desire for the law in his heart, and henceforth does nothing out of fear and compulsion, but everything out of a willing heart. That law, then, is spiritual which will be loved and fulfilled with such a spiritual heart, and requires such a spirit. Where that spirit is not in the heart, there sin remains, and displeasure with the law, and emnity toward it though the law is good and just and holy.’

*** All Bible texts quoted above are from the King James Version, unless referenced differently.

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