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greatest law

The Greatest Law

We’re all familiar with the Ten Commandments.  We learn “thou shalt not kill” from earliest childhood.  Our parents tell it is wrong to steal.  Moreover, if you are a Christian, you likely know about keeping the Sabbath or Passover.  These types of statutes come from the ancient Hebraic laws Moses gave to the children of Israel.  God’s carved these laws into solid stone by His own finger.

Some say there are 660 separate laws given by YHWH to the children of Israel. There are laws on inheritance and laws on how to worship through sacrifices.  There is even a law that states that you are not to round the corners of your beard!

Unfortunately the Pharisees added to these laws by introducing their own set of mini laws.  Many very religious jews followed their traditions too which became the multi-volumed Talmud, thinking it helped them keep the Law of Moses.

Man shouldn’t add to God’s law

In fact, by the time Christ came, the Israelites had laws and traditions for almost everything.  So much so that it became too hard for the average person to keep all their rules. Many people simply stopped coming to the synagogue altogether.

The revelation of the first and greatest law

I am going to tell you about a revelation that God gave me a few months ago which revolutionized my understanding of scripture.  God revealed to me the truth about the first law.

A law above every other

There is a law that is above every other law in importance.  This law is preeminent to other laws, because it was the first law given to Adam before sin entered the world.  In fact, before the fall, the first law is the only law God commanded mankind to keep.

The greatest law is,

“And the Lord God Commanded the man, saying, From any tree of the garden you may eat freely; but from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day you eat from it you shall surely die.” 

 Genesis 2:16,17 (NAS)

The commandment not to eat of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil is the first law. This Law is the original law and is of greater importance than any other law that came after it.  Specifically, it carries more authority than any Mosaic laws or Jewish tradition.  This original law stands head and shoulders above all other laws that have been given since.

The first law mandated only one thing

The first and original law mandates one thing and one thing only: do not partake of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil.  What was this knowledge and why did God want to keep mankind from it?

The Serpent, or Satan, told Eve,

“And the serpent said to the woman, You surely shall not die.  For God knows that in the day you eat from it your eyes will be opened, and your will be like God, knowing good and evil.”

Genesis 3: 4, 5 

The greatest of all laws

The greatest of all laws was meant to prevent the human race from deciding what is right for themselves.  God wanted to keep that knowledge to Himself.  YHWH knew that Adam, finite as he was, could never manage the knowledge of good and evil by himself.

God designed Adam to live by revelation alone

In the beginning,  Gods ordained that mankind live by revelation alone.  Indeed, in the garden of Eden, Adam lived by every word that proceeded out of the mouth of God.  If Adam did not know something or needed to make a decision he did not try to figure out what was right or what was wrong, he simply asked God. Living by revelation was the intended result of keeping the first law.  God never meant us to live according to what seemed right in our own eyes.

Here is a truth:

 “The greatest law was designed to keep mankind in constant and intimate communion with God.  This was the only law that God declared that mankind need follow.”

In the Garden there was complete freedom under the first law.  There was no lack of knowledge, because Adam had access to God.  Moreover, if God’s son lack wisdom, he simply asked YHWH who gives to all men liberally.  However, the more mankind strayed from the first law the more hardened their hearts became.  Note: Being close to God meant only one law while being far away from God meant thousands of laws.

We are freed from the law of sin and death

The Apostle Paul talks about freedom from the Mosaic Law in the book of Romans,

“For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has set you free from the law of sin and death.”

Romans 8:2

What is the law of sin and death?  It is the Law of Moses.  The temple was essentially a huge slaughterhouse where animals died in place of those who broke the law of Moses.  However, Paul declares that we are free from the Mosaic law through the greater law of the Spirit of Life in Christ.  This law of the Spirit of life in Christ is simply a return to the first and the greatest law.

Christ lived by the greatest law

I submit to you that Christ did not live according to the Mosaic Law but according to the first law of the Spirit of Life.

“The beginning of the gospel of Jesus Christ, the Son of God”

 Mark 1:1


“Which was the son of Enos, which was the son of Seth, which was the son of Adam, which was the son of God.”

Luke 3:38

Jesus is described as the “Last Adam.”,

“And so it is written, The first man Adam was made a living soul; the last Adam was made a quickening spirit.”

 1 Corinthians 15:45

Where Adam failed, Jesus succeeded

Whereas the first Adam failed to live by revelation, the last Adam, Jesus Christ, succeeded.  Follow Jesus Christ and keep only the first law. If you live by revelation you will have no need to keep any of the other laws. Believers naturally do what is contained in all the laws through communion with God.

For what the law could not do, in that it was weak through the flesh, God sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, and for sin, condemned sin in the flesh: That the righteousness of the law might be fulfilled in us, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit.”

Romans 8:3,4

And in the book of Galatians Paul states,

“This I say then, Walk in the Spirit, and ye shall not fulfil the lust of the flesh.”

Galatians 5:16 

Live only by the greatest law

In conclusion, we are all on a journey “Back to the Garden”.  God takes us back to the pre-fallen, sinless state of living by revelation.  Christ lived “by faith” in whatever God told him directly. To have the mind of Christ is to know nothing except the first law of the spirit of life. Follow this one law and you fulfill all the rest.

Made To Love by TobyMac