Do you remember the first time you ever rode a bike? I bet the first time and the many other attempts after that happened with training wheels. Training wheels are a wonderful invention that can help any kid get comfortable with a bike. But as helpful as training wheels are, the goal is always be to outgrow them.
In many ways, the written laws of God given through Moses are like training wheels – they give us a glimpse of the wonderful experience of being with God just like training wheels expose us to the excitement of riding a bike.
But here’s an interesting thought – God gave us these “training wheels” called His law knowing that they exceeded what we could keep. God is all knowing and knew from the beginning that we would forever be humans incapable of keeping or obeying His law faithfully. But despite that, He gives the law to us anyways to help keep us on the right track.
The rules are not the goal of living – the goal of the law has always been two-fold, and understanding both goals helps us see in clearer terms why God gave us His laws.
The law shows us the holiness of God
The primary purpose of God’s laws is not to expose our faithfulness because left to our own selves, our faithfulness would only prove to be of little to no value. We are after all naturally unfaithful creatures who often live selfishly if left to the flesh. The law of God instead points to His faithfulness and holiness.
God’s laws show us just how holy God is that the standard would be so unimaginably high. James 2:10 tells us, “whoever keeps the whole law but fails in one point has become guilty of all of it.” That’s God’s standard and as far as we imperfect and sinful people are concerned, no one makes the cut.
The law shows us our need for God’s grace
Training wheels we can grown independent from at some point, but when it comes to our souls and God’s ways, we can and never will outgrow His grace. We are like children who will forever be incapable of balancing bikes, and will need training wheels for the rest of our lives.
The beauty if God’s design is that He has always meant for us to exist in a way that is dependent on His grace. Romans 5:20 says, “Now the law came in to increase the trespass, but where sin increased, grace abounded all the more.” We will never outgrow the grace of God and the laws of God were meant to show us exactly that.