Have you ever noticed that God's Laws are restricting? Looking at just the list of 10 (Commandments) we find a great number of things we shouldn't do, but is this a bad thing? Do you really feel that you should be allowed to use God's name any way you want? Do you feel that it should be fine to steal from someone? What about dishonoring your parents, should you be allowed to do that?
What about the laws referring to what you and I shouldn't eat? Food is food, right? Why are these laws even there? Aren't we being kept from enjoying tasty goodies? Why?
When I tell my 3 year old granddaughter not to pick up a honey bee, am I being restrictive? When I hold her hand as we cross the street, am I being restrictive? My motives for the "NO, NO"s I give are not meant to hurt her, or to cause her undue suffering. These restrictions are meant to protect her.
So then, why do we get so upset when God puts restrictions on us? What are His motives? Doesn't He just want us to be safe? Isn't He trying to protect us? Certainly! Are there similarities between my motives and God's? Of course! Why? Love!
When we stop and consider the reason for each and every one of God's Laws (including His laws on what we should and shouldn't eat), and when we consider what happens when we disobey then we can see that God is being restrictive because He loves us. The immediate result of each disobedience may not be seen for years, but the end is always the same.
... when sin is allowed to grow, it gives birth to death.
Freedom, REAL freedom, comes when we follow God's rules. He is saying, "Don't get caught in the devil's trap! This is what to look out for, stay away!"
- don’t love anyone or anything more than you love the God who created you.
- don’t make some THING (animate or inanimate, hardware or software, concrete or abstract) into something that you worship.
- don’t use the holy name of your Creator lightly.
- don’t forget about your Creator, and the holy time He set aside for you.( It’s a special day called the Sabbath, the 7th day of the week, and it was blessed by God for the purpose of building a closer relationship between you and your Creator!)
- don’t dishonor your parents.
- don’t murder anyone.
- don’t “sleep around”. Be faithful to that special someone that you promised to care for.
- don’t take something that belongs to someone else.
- don’t say things that are not true.
- don’t even want something that belongs to someone else.
Much like how traffic rules help to keep us safe, God's rules keep us away from those things that will hurt and kill us.
That's real freedom!
Holy Father in Heaven,
Thank You for the restrictive laws that You have given to us! You are trying to warn us of the things that are not good for us, things that will eventually kill us. Help us to listen and obey. After all, You made us, and because of that we know that You know best.
Thank You for the fences that You have put up. Help us not to climb over them and hurt ourselves.
We praise You! In Jesus Holy name, amen.
"O Lord, I have longed for your rescue, and your instructions are my delight."
For further study: