The role of rules

Every family has its own set of rules:

  • Rules that dictate proper behavior.
  • Rules that govern the use of electronics.
  • Rules that establish a general daily schedule.

Each family is a little bit different, but every family has rules.

Here’s a silly question: How long did you have to keep the rules before you were brought into your family?

You know that the role of rules is not to bring people into a family. Rules indicate you are already in the family, and they provide a baseline for showing respect to everyone in the house.

Here is the same question but on a spiritual level: How long did you have to keep God’s rules before you were brought into his family?

Well, that’s not what his rules are for either. His rules were not designed to bring people in. Before God gave a single commandment to the Israelites, he established the basis for his relationship with them: “I am the Lord your God, who brought you out of Egypt, out of the land of slavery. You shall have no other gods before me” (Exodus 20:2,3).

God puts his act of redemption before mentioning a single rule because rules don’t bring you into God’s family. Only Jesus does.

The Son’s obedience and the Spirit’s adoption sealed your place with God. The rules remind you that you are there by grace, and they provide guidance for showing love to everyone in the house.

 

Pastor Matt Ewart and his wife, Amy, have been blessed with three young children who keep life interesting. Matt is currently a pastor in Lakeville, Minnesota, and has previously served as a pastor in Colorado and Arizona.

 

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