It's commonly stated that Jesus came to fulfill the law, but a closer look reveals that Jesus himself never explicitly made such a claim. In Matthew 5:17, Jesus declares, "Do not think that I came to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I did not come to abolish but to fulfill."

This statement, often overlooked, holds profound implications. Jesus isn't merely talking about adhering to the laws' regulations; rather, he's delving into a deeper significance of fulfilling the entire Hebrew Bible, encompassing both the Law and the Prophets.

So, what exactly does it mean for Jesus to fulfill the Law and the Prophets? Let's break it down into two key aspects.

Firstly, understanding the context unveils how Jesus fulfills the law by bringing to completion a grand narrative. The Law and the Prophets depict a time when God would initiate a comprehensive healing of humanity and creation through a central figure, alongside a community. Matthew portrays Jesus as fulfilling this role, becoming the pivotal figure foretold in ancient scriptures.

Secondly, Matthew 5:17 is situated within Jesus' Sermon on the Mount (Matthew 5-7), where he expounds on teachings from the Hebrew Bible. Here, Jesus imparts instructions for a specific righteousness—a way of rightly relating to God and fellow beings—that resonates with the essence of the Law and the Prophets. Adhering to these instructions fulfills the entirety of Scripture.

While Jesus indeed observes the Law and the Prophets, his deeper mission is to fulfill them. He and his disciples exemplify a transformative way of living, echoing the profound narrative introduced in Genesis.


From the narrative of Eden to subsequent tales of human striving and failing, Jesus emerges as the culmination of humanity's journey toward redemption. While figures like Moses and Israel attempted to partner with God but ultimately fell short, Jesus accomplished what they could not. He fulfills the Law and the Prophets in a manner unparalleled by his predecessors.

Imagine experiencing Jesus' story unfold as a Jewish listener in the 1st century. The parallels drawn between Jesus and figures like Moses, as recounted by a skilled orator, paint a vivid picture of redemption. From the echoes of Herod's tyranny mirroring Pharaoh's oppression to Jesus' baptism evoking Moses' crossing of the Red Sea, the connections are striking. Jesus emerges as a new Moses, leading humanity into a renewed covenant with God.

Moreover, Jesus' unwavering fidelity to God's will, depicted through his trials and teachings, fills the Law and the Prophets to completion. His journey mirrors that of Israel, yet transcends it, ushering in a new era of spiritual liberation.


Central to Jesus' teachings is the concept of fulfilling the Law through love. While adhering to commandments such as "Do not murder" may seem straightforward, Jesus unveils a deeper truth: true fulfillment lies in embodying love towards one another.

Rather than merely avoiding wrongdoing, Jesus emphasizes actively pursuing what aligns with God's will—namely, showing love and compassion. This transformative understanding is echoed by the Apostle Paul, who emphasizes the pursuit of goodness and benevolence.

In essence, Jesus teaches that love serves as the ultimate fulfillment of the Law and the Prophets. By encapsulating the essence of God's commandments in love for God and neighbor, individuals participate in the establishment of God's Kingdom.


Jesus encapsulates the essence of the Law and the Prophets in the two greatest commandments: to love God wholeheartedly and to love one's neighbor as oneself. These commandments serve as the fulcrum upon which the entirety of Scripture hinges, embodying the essence of God's covenant with humanity.

From the beginning of time, God's overarching plan has been to restore humanity and creation through the promised Messiah. Jesus embodies this promise, ushering in a new era of healing and reconciliation.

To follow Jesus is to embrace a life of love and compassion, thereby fulfilling the divine narrative woven throughout the Law and the Prophets. His teachings invite us to participate in God's redemptive plan, wherein love becomes the ultimate expression of fulfillment.