Twisted Text - Matthew 5:17-19 (Jesus Fulfilled the Law)

Jesus Christ said,

17 "Do not think that I came to destroy the Law or the Prophets. I did not come to destroy but to fulfill. 18 For assuredly, I say to you, till heaven and earth pass away, one jot or one tittle will by no means pass from the law till all is fulfilled. 19 Whoever therefore breaks one of the least of these commandments, and teaches men so, shall be called least in the kingdom of heaven; but whoever does and teaches them, he shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven."

Notice that "fulfill" and "destroy" are opposites. Not only did Jesus not "come to destroy the law," but He also commands us to avoid thinking that thought. "Fulfill" means to "fill full" or "fill up" in completeness. A few chapters earlier Jesus said He would "fulfill all righteousness" by being baptized (Matthew 3:15). Did His baptism abolish baptism because He "fulfilled" baptism? No. Rather, His baptism is an example for us, and we should be baptized too (see Acts 2:38). It's the same with the law. Jesus fulfilled the Ten Commandments by keeping them as our example. He never murdered, stole, lied, or dishonored His parents. Not only that, but at the end of His life He died on the cross to atone for our sins of breaking them.

Did this abolish the law? Definitely not. Right after Matthew 5:17, Jesus continued by stating, "till heaven and earth pass away, one jot or one tittle shall by no means pass from the law til all is fulfilled" (Mat. 5:18). Heaven and earth are still standing, therefore, according to Jesus, not a jot or tittle of the law has passed away. Furthermore, in the next verse He said we should not "break one of the least of these commandments," or "teach men so," but should "do" and "teach" them (verse 19).

Which "commandments" was Jesus talking about? A few verses later He referred to the 7th commandment, "You shall not commit adultery" (Mat. 5:27), and then declared that even the lustful look was committing adultery in the heart (verse 28) and may send a person to hell (verse 29). Thus Jesus plainly taught that we should keep the Ten Commandments, should teach them to others, and that breaking even “one” is dangerous and potentially soul damning.

That's what Jesus Christ said.

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