Laying down the law bears no fruit

By Dave Henning / June 17, 2021

“It’s not a question in life of whether keeping the Ten Commandments is good — of course it’s better to be honest, faithful, and upright.  But laying down the law bears no fruit. . . .  The law makes us anxious and exhausted.  When we’re worried and weary, we’re at our worst.  Fear makes us choke or panic.”- Alan Wright

“When we were controlled by our old nature, sinful desires were at work within us, and the law aroused these evil desires that produced a harvest of sinful deeds, resulting in death.”- Romans 7:5 (NLT)

Pastor Alan Wright concludes Chapter 6 of The Power to Bless as he tells a story about his daughter Abby.  While a junior in college, Abby talked to one of her professors.  The class required an verbal presentation every week.  However, since Abby received no assigned grades, she felt uncomfortable.

The professor confirmed Abby’s excellent work.  But he hesitated to reveal her exact status.  Because he wanted Abby to stay motivated.  Yet, the goal of withholding blessing fails.  In contrast, blessed people work harder than people searching for blessing.

Most significantly, the eighteenth-century evangelist John Wesley possessed an excellent and legendary work ethic.  At the age of five, Wesley found himself trapped when the family house caught fire.  Thankfully, a quick-thinking neighbor stood on another’s shoulders and rescued John from an upstairs window.  Just a moment before the house collapsed.  From then on, John’s mother Susanna referred to him as ‘a brand plucked from the burning,’ a reference to Zechariah 3:2.

Therefore, Pastor Wright reasons, “If you see yourself as saved for a great purpose, you burn with energy to fulfill your calling.”

In conclusion, Alan adds:

“Blessing helps people perform better and work harder, but most importantly, blessing helps people trust God and expect His supernatural grace in their lives. . . .  When we pray for others, we ask God to do wonderful things for them.  But when we bless others, we connect them to the wonders God has done and is doing.”

Today’s question: Do you agree that laying down the law bears no fruit?  Please share.

Tomorrow’s blog: “Unmerited favor = the heart of all blessing”

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Dave Henning

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