God's Nail

A. Jesus described the Law and the Prophets as hanging on two commandments. MAT 22:34-40. 1. These accord with the tables of the Law (the Ten Commandments) which set forth man’s relating to God before man’s relating to man. EXO 20:1-17. 2. Believers can only know that they truly love others by loving God first. 1JO 5:2. 3. Conversely, one cannot claim to love God if he doesn’t love brethren. 1JO 4:20-21. 4. The love of God both qualifies and animates the love of others.

B. Consider the Biblical bracketing of love. 1. The first occurrence in Scripture of any form of the word “love” is in GEN 22:2, where a beloved only son was commanded to be made a sacrifice. 2. The last occurrence is in REV 22:15 which speaks of the condemning love of a lie. 3. It was for the love of a lie that sin and death entered. GEN 3:4-6 c/w ROM 5:12. a. Eve bought into a lie because of cunning deception. 2CO 11:3. b. But Adam made a conscious choice of loving self and neighbor more than God. 1TI 2:14. c. Mixing up priorities of love is deadly business. (1) What if one presumes to “love his neighbor as himself” by drawing him into one’s own polytheistic idolatry? (2) What if one is a self-mutilating loon and wants to love his neighbor so? 4. This curious “love-bracketing” of the entire record of Scripture is almost a cryptic summary of God’s salvation planned in view of man’s fall into sin: a beloved Son must be sacrificed because man loved a lie more than God, a lie that made love of self and of neighbor of greater interest than love of God. JOH 3:16; 2CO 5:21; ISA 53:10-11.

C. The common element of the two great commandments is love which (as charity) rejects iniquity and self. 1CO 13:5-6. 1. The image set forth by MAT 22:37-40 is that of the entirety of the Old Testament hanging from a nail called “Love.” 2. Taking the common ruling element of love out of the Law and the Prophets leaves it a dissatisfying curse. GAL 3:10. 3. “Love is the greatest thing This world has ever known, It fits us for God’s service here And leads us nearer home.” (Hymn: Charity)

D. The “gospel of Isaiah” (ROM 10:15-21) contained an interesting prophecy. ISA 22:20-24. 1. The government of God’s people would be committed to Eliakim whose name means, “God raises” or “God of raising.” 2. REV 3:7 clearly uses ISA 22:22 of Christ: “...These things saith he that is holy, he that is true, he that hath the key of David, he that openeth, and no man shutteth; and shutteth, and no man openeth;” 3. Some of the prophecy of Eliakim (God of raising) applies to Christ “Whom God hath raised up, having loosed the pains of death...” (ACT 2:24) to sit on David's throne. ACT 2:29-32. 4. As the key was to be on Eliakim’s shoulder, so Christ with the key of David would have the fullness of the Davidic government upon His shoulder. ISA 9:6-7.

E. Consider how much of ISA 22:23-24 could also apply to Christ. 1. Jesus Christ is the fullest expression of the love of God and the love of man. a. He loved the Father. JOH 14:31; 8:29. b. He loved His own unto the end. JOH 13:1; 15:13. 2. From the standpoint of perfect, well-ordered love (the two great commandments) no other person ever had, or ever would after Him, thus flawlessly honor the Law and the Prophets. In this sense, the Law and the Prophets for our sakes hang on Him. a. His Spirit wrote the Law and the Prophets. 1PE 1:11. b. All the Law and the Prophets spoke of Him. JOH 5:39. c. He fulfilled the Law and the Prophets (MAT 5:17) satisfying all its demands for righteousness and justice, and fleshing out its types, shadows and direct prophecies which culminated in His death, burial and resurrection. LUK 24:44-46. d. His insurance package extended coverage to Jew and Gentile. ACT 26:22-23. 3. Christ is our Eliakim, who also is fastened “...as a nail in a sure place...for a glorious throne to his father's house” (ISA 22:23). a. God raised Him from the dead and gave Him glory in heaven. 1PE 1:21. b. Heaven is THE sure place. 1PE 1:3-4. 4. Upon Him has been hanged “...all the glory of his father's house, the offspring and the issue, all vessels of small quantity, from the vessels of cups, even to all the vessels of flagons” (ISA 22:24). a. Through Him, many mansions are prepared for us. JOH 14:2. b. All the children which God gave Him are sanctified in Him. HEB 2:11-13. c. They are many and varied “...vessels of mercy, which he had afore prepared unto glory” (ROM 9:23). 5. Nothing can separate us from this love. ROM 8:35-39. 6. We do well to hang our hopes on Him. ROM 8:24-25.

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