This basic statement is an introduction to one of the Bible’s key scriptures in appreciating the Lord’s systems. This is part of his system for conversion of the soul.
Psalm 19 was a song written by King David, and delivered to his musicians. This single line from that song, which older Christians have both read and sung, has within it numerous matters of significance to the growth of the believer, and yet can be discarded due to a lack of understanding.
The Law. This term often strikes a chord of disdain in the heart of many progressive church attendees. Yet, when we uncover what it means, we find it fundamental to our personal purity and civil society’s government and standing with God.
Of the Lord. We shouldn’t forget, this is His Law. He firstly designed us; then designed, wrote, and preserved laws and guidance principles that would address certain aspects of our human nature, with which he is so familiar. Human nature which removed Adam and Eve from the Garden, and cost so many souls in the flood, and caused the fall of Israel, and slaughtered our Saviour, his Son, and created so many wars, and caused the inquisition, and destroyed so many relationships, and activated every other issue humankind has endured. Yet, we think this law is out of date or irrelevant. Yes, we know Satan is behind our failings, but he simply directs our nature depending on our lusts.
Is Perfect. When we talk about the Lord’s creation (the heavens, the earth and its creatures, including us), we think he has done a perfect job. Yet, when God looked over his finished work, day by completed day, the only terms he used were, ‘good’ or ‘very good’. That is because there is a perfect new heaven and a new earth coming, as the ‘good’ and ‘very good’ earthy and heavenly elements, as we know them, will pass away. The heavens and earth will go from imperfect to perfect.
Again, when we take the old testament priesthood, which sacrificed animals to obtain their unsatisfactory blood for mankind’s atonement, we see it as imperfect and needing replacement. Clearly, this had to cease, and did, with the death of our Christ and shedding of his perfect blood. The slaughter and sacrifice went from imperfect to perfect with the advent of Christ.
Interestingly though, when it came to God’s law, he used the term, ‘perfect’.
What do we make of that?
Do we say it is perfect for a time or era? Scripture doesn’t say that, although theologians might. It says it is perfect — for converting the soul.
We all want laws
Christians, like others, want laws to govern society and their behaviour within it, however, they want them designed by themselves.
The trouble is, despite us all reading from the same Bible, Christians feel quite differently about sentences for crimes. In fact, there has been much disagreement in the church around civil law, punishment, rights and responsibilities.
We all want sound civil laws and practices, yet, we feel so opposed to each other regarding crime and penalties it flies in the face of Christian unity. That often comes from the way we vote, or who we listen to as a preacher, or what side of the fence we were brought up on, or even if we or our friends have been on the wrong side of the law.
Presently, we have many churches in each suburb that don’t even talk to each other, prompting us to assume they are competitors, not brothers and sisters. So how can we expect to get agreement on national laws?
Thus, we see it as essential for a supreme creator we trust to develop some perfect principles, or, what we call laws, for the conversion of our soul.
These guidance principles assist Temperance, the ninth spiritual fruit in controlling our behaviour the way he wants it controlled, and not the way we want it.
The Apostle Paul understood that when he said in Romans 7:7, “…I had not known sin, but by the law: for I had not known lust, except the law had said, Thou shalt not covet.”
These principles for life, which only transform into laws when we step outside of their protection, have been written to challenge what happens to our human nature when we are left to ourselves. Without it, we end up with a situation such as in Judges 21:25, “…every person did that which was right in his own eyes”, which only leads to the havoc, unnecessary agony and grotesque expense and injustice we have today in the world of law.