"For the law was given through Moses; grace and truth came through Jesus Christ. No one has seen God at any time. The only Son, who is at the Father's side, has made Him known." John 1:17-18 (Cf. Deut. 18:15-20)
When the Children of Israel stood before Mt. Sinai and heard the voice of God Himself as He gave the 10 Commandments, they were terrified and told Moses, "You speak to us, and we will listen, but do not let God speak to us, lest we die" (Ex. 20:19). And which one of us could stand in the presence of the holy God and not fear death and eternal condemnation?
But God, through Moses, spoke to the people, saying, "The Lord your God will raise up for you a prophet from the midst of you, of your brothers, like me. You must listen to him" (Deut. 18:15).
And that's what God did. He sent His only-begotten Son, Jesus Christ, into the world to redeem us from our sins and rise again and to speak to us the good news of forgiveness and life through faith in Him as our Savior. On the Mount of Transfiguration, God the Father testified of Jesus, "This is My beloved Son, with whom I am well pleased. Listen to Him" (Matt. 17:5).
Jesus is the eternal Word, the creator and life-giver, God Himself in human flesh, come into this world to fulfill the holy commandments of God which we have failed to keep and to suffer and die in our stead to bear the punishment we justly deserve (cf. John 1:1-5;14-18,29; cf. 14:8ff.).
Though none of us could endure the thunderings of God's law because of our sinfulness and failures to measure up to all that God's holy commandments require, yet He comes to us in Messiah Jesus with pardon, peace and forgiveness for the sake of Christ's holy life and His innocent sufferings and death for our sins and the sins of the world.
It is as the Bible says, "Now we know that whatever the law says, it says to those who are under the law, so that every mouth may be silenced, and all the world may become accountable to God. Therefore by the works of the law no flesh will be justified in His sight, for through the law comes the knowledge of sin. But now, apart from the law, the righteousness of God is revealed, being witnessed by the Law and the Prophets. This righteousness of God comes through faith in Jesus Christ to all and upon all who believe, for there is no distinction. For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God, being justified freely by His grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus, whom God has set forth to be a propitiation through faith, in His blood, for a demonstration of His righteousness, because in His forbearance God had passed over the sins previously committed, to prove His righteousness at this present time so that He might be just and be the justifier of him who has faith in Jesus" (Rom. 3:19-26).
Do you want to know God? If you seek to know Him only through the Law given on Mt. Sinai, you will be terrified and afraid of Him.
If you want to know God, learn of Jesus and know Him. He is God in the flesh. He came into this world to redeem you -- to die for your sins and rise again. In Him, you will know God as your loving and merciful Father. Through faith in Him, you will have forgiveness and life everlasting!
Dearest Jesus, Son of God and son of man, thank You for revealing to us not only our sinfulness but Your grace and mercy for the sake of Your holy and perfect sacrifice for our sins. Amen.
[Devotion by Randy Moll. Scripture quotations are from The Holy Bible, Modern English Version. Copyright © 2014 by Military Bible Association. Published and distributed by Charisma House.]