“I was due to offer peace offerings; Today I have paid my vows.”
When religion replaces relationship, we are in a very dangerous and vulnerable place. As long as I check off my religious activity on the list, everything else is fair game. The woman speaking in this verse thought her religious activity was handled, so she could sin freely. In the days that Jesus was alive on earth, the religious leaders were “faithful” with their rules and regulations. They became the law informers and enforcers. To be ok with God you just needed to exhaust yourself following their list of rules. Bible scholars are in agreement that there are 613 commandments in the Old Testament. The Mishnah was an oral tradition of commentary on the Mosaic Law that introduced additional, man-made laws. When Jesus came, He made it clear that life in Him was about the heart, not the letter of the law. He summed all of this up in just two commandments. Love God completely and love others the same. Christmas is about the birth of freedom – freedom from the bondage of hundreds of laws, and freedom to live boldly and godly in that freedom. Today do both.