The Lord Jesus Came to Fulfill the Law – Reflection on Matthew 5:17

Reflection on Matthew 5:17

Matthew 5:17

"Think not that I am come to destroy the law, or the prophets: I am not come to destroy, but to fulfill."


We are all familiar with these words the Lord has said, but few among us understand the real meaning of them. Actually, these words embody that God carries His work in steps and according to His plans, and that God’s work is all closely interconnected, rising higher with each step. The Lord Jesus’ work of redemption is for fulfilling and improving the law, not for destroying the law. Just as God says, “The work done by Jesus was merely a stage higher than the Old Testament; it was used to begin an age, and to lead that age. Why did He say, ‘I have not come to destroy the law, but to fulfill’? Yet in His work there was much which differed from the laws practiced and the commandments followed by the Israelites of the Old Testament, for He did not come to obey the law, but to fulfill it. The process of fulfilling it included many actual things: His work was more practical and real, and, furthermore, it was alive, and not the blind adherence to doctrine. Did the Israelites not keep the Sabbath? When Jesus came He did not observe the Sabbath, for He said that the Son of man was the Lord of the Sabbath, and when the Lord of the Sabbath arrived, He would do as He wished. He had come to fulfill the laws of the Old Testament and to change the laws(“The Vision of God’s Work (1)”). From these words we can see the work the Lord Jesus did was based on the work of Jehovah God. For example, the Lord asked people to keep the law, “watch your tongue, and not commit adultery.” Meanwhile, he set out the commandments for the new age based on the stature of mankind at that time and the needs of new work. The commandments for the new age is more practical and alive. Clearly, God does His work by Himself. Outwardly, there are contradictions between the work of the Lord and the work of Jehovah. In fact, He has arranged all things methodically and carefully. Then, let’s have a think: What work will Jesus do when He returns? Will He do the work which is higher than the work of the Lord Jesus?

Extended Reading:
What Is the Work of Managing Mankind?