Many argue that religion in General and Christianity in particular — is a set of prohibitions and restrictions: “do not go There!”, “Don’t do this!”, “You can’t!” However, reading the Bible, you can find these words: “But whosoever looketh into the perfect law, the [law] of liberty, and continue therein, he being not a forgetful listener, but an executor of deeds, will be blessed in his deed” (James 1:25). So what is God’s Law — a set of prohibitions or the source of freedom?
We used to read the Bible as follows: “thou shalt Not kill. Thou shalt not commit adultery. Thou shalt not steal. Not bear false witness against thy neighbor. Thou shalt not covet” (Exodus 20:13-17). It is interesting that in the Bible there is mention of the people for whom these laws and rules were not something unaffordable, unsustainable.
Noah: “Noah was a just man and perfect in his generations; Noah walked with God” (Genesis 6:9).
Job: “…if you paid attention to My servant job? because there is no such as he on earth: people, true, blameless, righteous, God-fearing and departing from evil” (job 1:8).
The rich young ruler: “If thou wilt enter into life [eternal], keep the commandments. He says: what? Jesus said: “thou shalt not kill”; “thou shalt not commit adultery”; “thou shalt not steal”; “do not bear false witness”; “honor your father and mother”; and, “love your neighbor as yourself.” The young man saith unto Him, all these have I kept from my youth” (Matthew 19:17-20).
What caused this behavior of these people, and what makes them anxious and pedantic in the fulfillment of God’s decrees? After the ban is always some limitation…
If you carefully study the commandments, we can see something interesting. The Apostle James calls the perfect law, the law of liberty. If perfection is simple enough to explain (after all, if the law was given by God directly from Heaven, if there are any flaws or defects?), with the “law of liberty” things are not so simple.
Turning to other translations of the Holy Scripture we may find something very interesting. For example, the commandments in the Bible king James (1611) when translated into Russian starting to sound like this:
• You will not kill.
• Thou shalt not commit adultery.
• You’re not stealing.
Suddenly! What would it be? It turns out that the purpose of these regulations was not to complicate the life of man on earth, struck by evil, but rather to liberate and protect people from all the evil that surrounds it here. God wants to tell us that if we exercise faith, we will be free to kill, assault, intentionally cause someone pain and suffering.
The seventh commandment — “thou shalt Not commit adultery” (or “Thou shalt not commit adultery”). In modern language this means “You’re not going to change spouse (wife), engaging in sexual perversions, violence.”
Take a look around. If some 20 – 30 years ago our country was censured adultery, now there is even the term “civil marriage”, implying cohabitation without marriage. But such cohabitation in the eyes of God is fornication. Psychologists using all possible sources spread recommendations for improving relations. Between whom? Husband and wife? No! Between “partners”! Recommended how to choose, change, leave, use, etc. Someone will say: “We’re normal, natural, heterosexual relationships, and not for LGBT people, as some of the “decadent West””. Just because the West is this too recently was “normal”… So give our society another 10 years – 20, and we will be able to catch up and overtake America in this area… And to be proud of we will have nothing.
If you look at people who eat the fruits of “freedom” in the sphere of sexual relations (and no matter who it is — teenagers, youth or adults), through the intoxication of lust, we can easily see sadness — the terrible sadness because of the lack in the life of true love, purity, loyalty, devotion. Many of those who live in the space of “free love” (i.e. sexual immorality), the intuition that “it’s all wrong” and should not be so. God gives freedom from this curse. He says: “Thou shalt not…” do as all around. You have an alternative that gives real happiness, not mind-numbing hornblende.
God gives us freedom, which is “bliss” (i.e., happiness) when we allow these laws to act in our lives. So is the case with each of the commandments.
But for this the law needs to start “acting”, it is necessary to begin “to grasp”, to “abide in him” and “execute” it. Man desires and searches for it, makes the choice. But the work of transformation and change does is not a man but God Himself, Jesus Christ filling your life with the power of the Holy spirit. About this the Apostle Paul writes, “And I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. And the life I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me” (Galatians 2:20). Then human life becomes like the life of the righteous or Holy people, which the Bible mentions. And it’s not a life of restrictions and prohibitions. It is a life of freedom and joy. “You were called to freedom, brethren; only do not use your freedom as an opportunity for the flesh, but by love serve one another” (Galatians 5:13).