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New City Catechism - Question 13
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Posted by Ed Fedor, Associate Pastor


New City Catechism - Question 13


Q13: Can anyone keep the law of God perfectly?


A: Since the fall, no mere human has been able to keep the law of God perfectly, but consistently breaks it in thought, word, and deed.


Kid’s Answer:

Since the fall, no human has been able to keep the law of God perfectly.



Romans 3:10-12  "as it is written: 'None is righteous, no, not one; no one understands; no one seeks for God.  All have turned aside; together they have become worthless; no one does good, not even one.'"



Lev. 19:2, Lev. 20:26, 1 Pet. 1:15-16, Matt. 5:48, 1 John 1:9



Throughout Scripture we see commands from God that call for our absolute holiness. In the Old Testament, God told Israel through Moses, “You shall be holy, for I the Lord your God am holy” (Lev. 19:2). He repeated the command in Lev. 20:26. In the New Testament, the apostle Peter declared, “as he who called you is holy, you also be holy in all your conduct, since it is written, ‘You shall be holy for I am holy’” (1 Pet 1:15-16). Jesus, himself, told his disciples, “You therefore must be perfect, as your heavenly Father is perfect” (Matt. 5:48). This is clearly God’s standard for his creation – moral perfection. It has been from the beginning.


But there’s an obvious problem. Every human being except Jesus Christ fails to meet that standard. We fail every day. Every hour! We may be able to not sin for a few moments, but we are absolutely incapable of perfect holiness on this side of heaven. Even after we are saved by the grace of God by faith in Jesus Christ, we remain incapable of perfect holiness. As growing believers, we will sin less over time, but we will never achieve moral perfection in this life. One glorious day, believers in Christ will be in the presence of Jesus and all sin will be behind them. Until that wonderful day, we will consistently sin in our thoughts, in our words and in our actions. But thanks be to God that when we do sin, “if we confess our sins, [God] is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness” (1 John 1:9). There is cleansing at the cross!



We believe that man was created in the image of God, but fell into sin, and is therefore lost, and that only through regeneration by the Holy Spirit can salvation and spiritual life be obtained.  (Gen. 1:26272:7223:1-6Rom. 3:9-12,235:12,186:23;  Jn. 3:35-7)


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