What Jesus Did! 'Fulfilled!' — Matthew 5:17

Wednesday, February 17, 2021

[Jesus continued:] "Don't misunderstand why I have come. I did not come to abolish the law of Moses or the writings of the prophets. No, I came to accomplish their purpose."
— Matthew 5:17 NLT

Key Thought

Jesus' statement is shocking! To the devoted Jewish believer, nothing was more sacred than the law of Moses. But Jesus came and said he was the fulfillment of the law and the prophets. In other words, he was claiming that the goal of Scripture is found in him. This incredibly audacious claim of Jesus leaves no middle ground. He is either self-deluded, or he must be taken seriously. If we are to understand the heart, the character, the holiness, the righteousness, and the will of God, Jesus claims that we must look to him. He embodies and completes what the law had as its goal. He didn't come to offer some cheapened form of grace (cf. Jude 4 & 2 Timothy 3:2-5). Instead, God wants us to look to Jesus and see what he intended in his law — he wanted to benefit us with his righteousness and bring us closer to him!

Today's Prayer

Holy and Righteous God, thank you for sending Jesus. While I can read and understand your demands for character, holiness, and righteousness in your law, in Jesus I see more fully your call to me to be righteous. Please, dear Lord, work your work of salvation, and conform me to the character of Christ. In the name of my Savior and Lord, Jesus Christ, I pray. Amen.

Related Scripture Readings

  • 2 Corinthians 1:20
  • Hebrews 1:1-3
  • 2 Timothy 3:14-15


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Illustration of Matthew 5:17 NLT — [Jesus continued:] "Don't misunderstand why I have come. I did not come to abolish the law of Moses or the writings of the prophets. No, I came to accomplish their purpose."

About This Devotional

What Jesus Did! is a series of one-year devotional guides through each gospel, using one short scripture passage each day and following the Gospel in sequential order. Each devotional consists of a scripture passage and a reflection and a prayer which open up the day's scripture and show how it challenges you to live for Jesus.

What Jesus Did! is written by Phil Ware and is available in book form.

Scripture quotations are taken from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright ©1996, 2004, 2007, 2013, 2015 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.