I think God’s law really is written on everybody’s heart. Everyone on earth. Right now.
What is God’s law? There is a recurring, consistent theme in our Bible: God commands us to look after those who are disadvantaged, alienated or being treated unjustly, and to be fair and just in our own dealings with others. This theme keeps cropping up again and again. It starts in Genesis and runs through the prophets and other writings, all the way through to the teachings of Jesus and the New Testament writers.
Most people reading this probably don’t need to be reminded that God commands us to look after people who are disadvantaged or alienated or being treated unjustly, but I’ve listed just a few of the passages from our Bible that confirm this at the end of the article. It is, as I said, stated over and over again but it is stated particularly well by Micah:
“He has shown you, O mortal, what is good. And what does the LORD require of you? To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God.” (Micah 6:8)
Note that Micah tells us that God has already shown us what is good.
Jesus confirms this consistent Old Testament message by stating that his followers should love each other and love their neighbors. He doesn’t make any exceptions to this. Our neighbors include everybody. Jesus, confirming the Old Testament message, emphasizes that we should look after those who are poor, disadvantaged and alienated.
God promised that his law would be written on our hearts.
“I will put my law within them, and I will write it on their hearts” (Jeremiah 31:33).
Can we see evidence that God’s law is written on our hearts today? I think we can.
Think about the stories we tell, the books we read and the movies we watch. The “good guys” look after others, take care of the disadvantaged, sacrifice their own comfort for the well-being of others, sometimes even give up their lives for others. These characters are the heroes. They are doing what is right. We just know this is true. The “bad guys” are selfish. They exploit others. They are only interested in making themselves more comfortable. These characters are the villains. Deep in our hearts we all know this is true. We know this is truth at the deepest and most fundamental level. We know this is true whether we have any interest in religion or not. We know what is right. We know we are supposed to look after our sisters and brothers who need looking after.
To put it another way, we have no excuses. God’s law really is written on our hearts.
Let’s finish off by talking about sin for a moment. Sin is selfishness. Selfishness is sin. Sin is acting in opposition to God’s law. Sin is ignoring our brothers and sisters who are in need. Sin is making ourselves comfortable at the expense of others. So, the bad guys are sinful. We know this.
Sin is selfishness. Selfishness is sin.
It’s that simple.
Jesus is Lord.
A few of the many passages in our Bible showing us that God tells us to look after people who are disadvantaged or alienated or needing justice:
Genesis 18:19; Exodus 23:1-9; Deuteronomy 6:19-20; 1 Kings 10:9; Psalm 33:5; Proverbs 14:31; Proverbs 18:5; Isaiah 10:1-4; Isaiah 61:8; Jeremiah 9:24; Jeremiah 22:15-17; Hosea 12:6; Amos 5:12-15; Micah 6:8; Zechariah 7:9-10; Malachi 3:5; Matthew 23:23; Matthew 25:31-46; Luke 10:30-37.