Jeremiah 44:10 “They have not been humbled, to this day, nor have they feared; they have not walked in My law or in My statutes that I set before you and your fathers.’”
A Statute has been described as a rule of an organization or institution. They can be either literal or figurative, depending on the manner in which they are prescribed.
A figurative description of a statute is one that resembles truth but doesn’t necessarily define it.
Matthew 5:29 “If your right eye causes you to stumble, gouge it out and throw it away. It is better for you to lose one part of your body than for your whole body to be thrown into hell.”
The hyperbole Jesus used regarding the eye was to illustrate a point regarding the statute of holiness. The figurative language was useful for people to understand the seriousness of practicing purity and striving for perfection.
The Lord has used many literary forms to help His people come to an understanding of Truth.
Leviticus 20:22-23 “‘You shall therefore keep all My statutes and all My judgments, and perform them, that the land where I am bringing you to dwell may not vomit you out. And you shall not walk in the statutes of the nation which I am casting out before you; for they commit all these things, and therefore I abhor them.”
Now, I am not a fan of vomiting, matter of fact I completely despise the act. I will do anything I possibly can not to vomit when I have the flu, it completely ruins me when this occurs. So when I hear of the land vomiting out its inhabitants because they refused to obey God’s statutes, it makes me sit up and take notice.
Statutes can also be good or bad. The determination of what characterizes a statute is by whom it has been decreed.
A nation that adopts evil statutes defiles the land, which then leads to other questionable aspects of a statute….can a law be moral or immoral?
The ancient Canaanites had practices that required the sacrifice of children upon an altar. “…they do for their gods every detestable thing that Jehovah hates, even burning their sons and their daughters in the fire to their gods.” (Deuteronomy 12:31) The statutes they enacted were meant to appease their gods for the sake of prosperity. Those statutes seem evil today but the laws of abortion are not much different today.
Leviticus 20:26 “And you shall be holy to Me, for I the Lord am holy, and have separated you from the peoples, that you should be Mine.”
A nation that embraces the One true God as being Holy has a mandate placed before them—they must follow His decrees.
If a nation makes rules that offend God’s law, they place themselves in a position as moral agents over God.
A common occurrence in American politics is to legislate morality. The representatives of the people enact legislation that is meant to represent the will of society. How legislators define the maxims of society is another question that is often not well defined. It seems that Hollywood and News outlets bring so much influence through T.V. and movies that when we hear of a topic being expressed, mass media can either inflame the subject as being moral or decline it as outdated and irrelevant. Those who subscribe to the latter are castigated in society as being insensitive and hateful. Adjectives are used to diminish someone else’s position and are directed in such a way to lower a person’s viewpoint as being less valuable.
Any law that offends God’s standard of Holiness is evil. People may look for exceptions to try and diminish the overall impact or include language that softens the blow and makes it look more humanitarian but in the end, the laws of God are engraved in stone, they do not change.
Exodus 20:13 “You shall not murder.”
Can the charge to not murder be made any more clear? The Lord doesn’t make exceptions, He doesn’t leave it open for discussion, or act regretful that it can be taken so harshly.
The law of the land is that if a woman chooses to murder her baby in the womb, she is allowed to do so. Those who push for such legislation believe that a baby in the womb belongs to the mother’s right to choose life or death for the child. There is a long line of so called ‘doctors’ who are willing to do whatever it takes to kill that child and many of these charlatans of medicine have grown rich from the blood of the innocent. The abortion doctors today are not much different than the Canaanite priests of long ago.
Should there be a provision for cases in which a woman is impregnated during rape or incest?—The moral law to not murder does not make such a provision. If you have to kill an unborn child, regardless of the reason, it is deemed as murder. Many will declare that the life of the mother, if compromised, gives reason to terminate the child, and in very few cases, the necessity to make dramatic decisions like this are not easily concluded. Each situation is unique to itself but with the advances of modern medicine, the ability to care for a premature infant becomes more feasible each day.
Isaiah 42:5-6 “Thus says God the Lord,
Who created the heavens and stretched them out,
Who spread forth the earth and that which comes from it,
Who gives breath to the people on it,
And spirit to those who walk on it:
“I, the Lord, have called You in righteousness,
And will hold Your hand;
I will keep You and give You as a covenant to the people,
As a light to the Gentiles”
When we are faced with crucial decisions in life, such as whether the life of a mother should take precedence over the child, I believe the Lord will make it clear which direction to go.
Do you seek out His will?
Is God’s priority paramount in your life or do you subscribe to a societal model of morality? Do you make decisions based off emotional pulls or do you allow the rationality of God’s Word to dominate your life?
What makes a law good?
In and of themselves, people cannot make good laws. They can mimic a good law or replicate one they have known but they do not have the capacity to construct a law that is deemed ‘good’.
Psalm 53:3 “All have turned away, they have together become corrupt; there is no one who does good, not even one.”
Any law that is deemed good must originate from God.
Psalm 119:68 “You are good, and You do what is good; teach me Your statutes.”
The goodness of God is made manifest by His statutes. We would be wise to learn them.
Goodness originates with Him and any measure that is equal to Him was born out of His character.
Learning to live
How do we know what to follow? What statutes or decrees are considered worthy and which are unworthy?
To offend a worthy statute, is to offend God. To obey an unworthy statute is to likewise offend God. The Lord is the judge of all mankind, so whether we are thrown in prison, tortured, or killed, God’s people stand upon God’s statutes because they recognize that which is worthy. There are many faithful who have suffered under evil rule and yet their crown of righteousness endures into eternity.
Learning to live with purpose takes a determination to know the Truth.
1 Peter 2:20 “How is it to your credit if you are beaten for doing wrong and you endure it? But if you suffer for doing good and you endure it, this is commendable before God.”
Knowing and practicing the statutes of the Lord will lead to life and honor before God. The honor you receive will endure forever and the goodness of God will be made evident both now and in the age to come.
The more people walk in righteousness, the more they will see the value of doing so.
Living righteously is to live wisely and God’s statutes will be your guide.