I Came to Fulfill the Law and the Prophets
Sermon shared by Michael Luke
Summary: A look at why Jesus came to earth in His own words
Denomination: Christian/Church of Christ
Audience: General adults
The Law was designed to be temporary – at least its ritual sacrifices and religious observances were temporary. Jer. 31:31-33 – “‘The time is coming," declares the LORD, ‘when I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel and with the house of Judah. It will not be like the covenant I made with their forefathers when I took them by the hand to lead them out of Egypt, because they broke my covenant, though I was a husband to them,’ declares the LORD. ‘This is the covenant I will make with the house of Israel after that time,’ declares the LORD. ‘I will put my law in their minds and write it on their hearts. I will be their God, and they will be my people.’ ” And Heb. 10:1-4 – “The law is only a shadow of the good things that are coming—
not the realities themselves. For this reason it can never, by the same sacrifices repeated endlessly year after
year, make perfect those who draw near to worship. If it could, would they not have stopped being offered?
For the worshipers would have been cleansed once for all, and would no longer have felt guilty for their sins.
But those sacrifices are an annual reminder of sins, because it is impossible for the blood of bulls and goats to
take away sins.”
In light of that biblical information, the question remains: How did Jesus fulfill the Law and the Prophets? Remember Webster’s definition of “fulfill”. It means “to carry out something promised; to do something required; to satisfy a condition; to complete.”
First, He fulfilled the Law’s purpose of demonstrating God’s standard of righteousness. Jesus’ perfect life showed us how sinful our lives are. 1 Pet. 2:21-23 – “To this you were called, because Christ suffered for you, leaving you an example, that you should follow in his steps. ‘He committed no sin, and no deceit was found in his mouth.’ When they hurled their insults at him, he did not retaliate; when he suffered, he made no threats. Instead, he entrusted himself to him who judges justly.”
Second, He fulfilled the Law’s penalty by giving His life as payment for our sin. 1 Pet. 2:24 – “He himself bore our sins in his body on the tree, so that we might die to sins and live for righteousness; by his wounds you have been healed.”
He fulfilled the Old Testament prophecies concerning His first coming. Science has developed a method of studying odds. It’s called the science of compound probabilities – a mathematical study of situations and the odds of possible outcomes.
One of the most amazing studies conducted using this method was recorded by Professor Peter Stoner in Science Speaks. The purpose of this study was to determine the odds of one man in history fulfilling all the prophecies recorded in the Bible that point to the Jewish Messiah. There are over 300 different messianic Bible prophecies. Stoner chose 61 that are clearly defined and specific for this study.
To begin, eight prophecies were chosen that were totally beyond the human control of Jesus: His place of birth (Micah 5:2); the time of His birth (Dan. 9:25; Gen.
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