Key Verse: “For not the hearers of the law are just before God, but the doers of the law shall be justified.”
THE HEAVENLY FATHER established righteous rules and principles to be observed and practiced by all intelligent beings. In his perfect capacity, Adam had the ability to follow them, thus permitting him to live in happiness and experience continued life, fulfillment, and peace.—Ps. 119:165
Commencing with Adam’s disobedience in Eden, the entire human family has become contaminated with sin and, therefore, incapable of keeping the Divine law. Except for God’s Son, who left his heavenly home and came to earth to be a ransom sacrifice for Adam and all of mankind who inherited his sin, there have been “none righteous, no, not one.” (Rom. 3:10) Thus we see that humanity is under the death sentence and continues to perish. Unknowingly, though, they are awaiting another feature of God’s plan that will provide for their awakening from the sleep of death.
“Whosoever shall keep the whole law, and yet offend in one point, he is guilty of all.” (James 2:10) In view of this statement, condemnation is upon everyone who sins. All are guilty, even those who deceive themselves by thinking they are not as flawed as others who may manifest seemingly more reprehensible conduct than they do. Presently, there are two classes of individuals guilty of sin. One group, the world in general, will continue to presume upon God’s goodness, and stubbornly fail to repent from wrongful deeds. At the present time these remain estranged from the Heavenly Father. Such, therefore, will await instruction “in righteousness” and an opportunity to change their present ways during God’s kingdom. “He hath appointed a day, in the which he will judge the world in righteousness by that man whom he hath ordained.”—Acts 17:31
Other individuals during this Gospel Age have learned that through repentance and acceptance of Jesus Christ, as the means of having a relationship with God, they may devote their lives to him in consecration. These receive justification and entertain the hope of attaining glory, honor, as well as eternal life, for the purpose of helping to restore mankind to human perfection during God’s kingdom.—Rom. 2:7; Rev. 20:6
Nearly two thousand years ago, when Jesus came to the earth, he presented himself to Israel as their long promised and hoped for Messiah. If a sufficient number of the Jewish people had accepted the offer of becoming a nation of priests and kings, Gentiles would not have had an opportunity of becoming joint heirs with Christ in his heavenly kingdom to bless all the families of the earth. Except for a remnant, however, the Jews did not receive our Lord as their King and Redeemer. Eventually, this High Calling was extended to others. Thus the body of Christ will include representatives from all nations, because God is not a respecter of persons.—Gal. 3:16,27-29; Rom. 2:10-12
The Key Verse reminds us that the Jews could not attain justification because of their inability to keep perfectly the Mosaic Law. We who have come into Christ may be acceptable to God only if our actions and walk of life are guided by the principles outlined in the Scriptures. Let us resolve to make the import of being “doers” of God’s Word rather than “hearers” only as an ever present reality in our lives.