Wednesday in the Twenty-Ninth Week of Ordinary Time

Hebrews 10:15-18

I Will Put My Laws on Their Hearts

The problem with the law is that it is always “outside” of us; that is, the law calls us from without and tells us that this is the way we ought to go.  Now, it is very good that the law tells us this; otherwise, we might not know, our minds being so darkened by sin.  But it can only command us; it cannot help us to go the way we ought to go.  In other words, the law does not inspire and certainly does not give us a desire to obey its terms.  The law bestows nothing inward to induce us to follow the right way.

But the Prophet Jeremiah preaching six-hundred years before our Lord’s birth spoke of a day when the Lord would make a new covenant with His people in which He would “put [His] law within them, and…write it on their hearts” (31:31-34).  This is what the Preacher rehearses now, which he did in 8:8-12, meaning that this Old Testament passage meant much to him.  And why is this?  Because the Prophet speaks of that something more which we need if we are to follow the path of life.  So, he speaks of an inward impulse, something that makes us want to follow God’s word.  He speaks of a new heart and a new mind being created in the one who would be numbered among God’s people.  We call this the “new birth,” in which we are given a heart of flesh to replace our heart of stone (Ezekiel 11:19; 36:26).  The Apostle Peter says that we “have been born again, not of perishable seed but of imperishable, through the living and abiding word of God” (1 Peter 1:23).

Moreover, God gives us His Holy Spirit (1 Thessalonians 4:8), who “bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God” (Romans 8:15-16).  With this new principle of spiritual life within us (the new birth) and the Holy Spirit speaking truth to the inward man, nurturing faith within us, and empowering us to kill sin and grow in grace, we have under the new covenant what the old covenant could never provide for us through legal prescriptions. 

And the Preacher quotes Jeremiah quoting God, “And I will remember their sins and their lawless deeds no more,” as far from us as east is from west, the psalmist says (103:12).  And this is yet another proof that our Lord’s sacrifice is once for all; after all, if one sacrifice atoned for all sin, what need is there for another sacrifice?  And so we now have what we always needed—new life.  God’s ways are now good and right and holy to us.  We now have a desire to follow and obey, for the Lord’s ways are now beautiful to us, because He is beautiful to us.  He is our heart’s and our love’s desire.

Author: The Reformed Baptist

My name is Stephen Taylor, ordained Baptist minister of eighteen years pastoral experience with a Ph.D. in Historical Theology from Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary in Fort Worth, Texas. Better than that, I am married to a godly woman, Karla, who has been very patient with me since 1989. I have two daughters, both of whom I homeschooled for extended periods of time, who became godly young women, and who ran off and married godly young men, all of which is very proper. The oldest daughter has even seen fit to bless me with a grandson and a granddaughter, and my youngest daughter with a grandson, all three of whom are bundles of exceeding joy. As you can see, I am quite blessed. This website is dedicated to helping people grow in the wisdom and knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ through the gift of writing that the Lord has given to me. It is specifically about helping His people grow in godliness, the theme you see repeated above. I write devotions with this aim and hope that they might be of some help to God’s people. Full disclosure: I am of a Reformed bent, meaning that my understanding of Scripture is primarily informed by the Reformers and their successors of the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries. However, as a student of church history and theology, I strive to remain true to that teaching handed down once for all unto the saints through every age of the Church. I like to think of myself as a “catholic” Christian, as the Reformers thought of themselves. At any rate, feel free to read, pray, and contact me if you wish, or correct me if need be. As you can see, I tend to follow the church year. Of course, I make no special claims about these devotions. I know very well that others have written better and plumbed the depths of God’s word with greater insight. But if my musings help someone draw closer to the Lord, well then, I have my reward. Blessings to you and may the God and Father of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ speak to you that word which He knows you especially need to hear. Grace & peace, Stephen Taylor

Leave a Reply

%d bloggers like this: