On the last day of May in 1880 Queen Sunandha of Siam and her daughter drown when the royal boat capsized. Many bystanders could have rescued them but were unable to help because it was forbidden on the punishment of death to physically touch members of the royal family. It is a classic story of laws becoming more important than principles. The law was made to protect the royal family from overly fond admirers harming them in a quest to touch them. (See the story of the woman who wanted to touch Jesus’ robe. Matthew 9)
Jesus’ struggled with the religious establishment who had fallen into the same trap. Many of His miracles performed on the Sabbath were an attempt to teach them the principle of human need and care. This was the important issue. It is fascinating that they knew the law condensed to two principles – love your God with all your heart and your neighbor as yourself. (See Matthew 22) In Galatians 5:14 Paul says, “For the entire law is fulfilled in keeping this one command: “Love your neighbor as yourself.” Yet they were obsessed with rules.
Once we understand and begin to live by principles we experience a marvelous life of freedom. When I love you I only want the best for you and would never desire to harm you. I don’t even think about the Law. I am free to do anything I desire because what I desire is to benefit you and all those around me. It is a wonderful way to live. Just think about getting up in the morning and doing anything you want to do and not fearing you would upset God. Being a real Christian is an incredible way to live.
Written by Roger Bothwell on March 3, 2015
Spring of Life, PO Box 124, St. Helena, CA 94574