Q13: Can Anyone Keep the Law of God Perfectly?

New City Catechism: Question 13


Christians practice catechesis to instruct believers on the foundational truths of the Christian faith. In a question and answer format, this form of discipleship teaches the Apostle’s Creed, the Ten Commandments, the Lord’s Prayer, along with the basics of the Bible. The New City Catechism, created by Redeemer Presbyterian Church in New York City, asks 52 questions, one for each week of the year, on topics such as God, creation, and salvation. Each video provides an extended answer to the question from either a pastor at Redeemer or council members of the Gospel Coalition. Leo Schuster, Lead Pastor of City Church in Houston, Texas, answers the question, "Can anyone keep the Law of God perfectly?”


Romans 3:10-12 (ESV)

10as it is written:

“None is righteous, no, not one;

11no one understands;

no one seeks for God.

12All have turned aside; together they have become worthless;

no one does good,

not even one.”

Scripture quotations marked (ESV) are from The Holy Bible, English Standard Version®, copyright © 2001 by Crossway Bibles, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers. Used by permission. All rights reserved.



We can respond to question thirteen with the following answer: 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.


Leo said that because of our sinful condition, we cannot perfectly obey the Law of God. What stands out to you the most about this answer? Why?
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The darkness of our sin and our inability to keep the Law isn’t the end of the story. Jesus came as a human, fulfilled the Law to perfection, died, and rose again so we could join in His victory.


Does the answer to this question impact your Christian walk? If so, how and why?
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Read through Romans 3:10–12. Take a moment to reflect on your inability to keep God’s Law. Use the space below to respond. You can write out a prayer, list the implications of not keeping God’s Law, or brainstorm ways you can apply the principle to your life.
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The Catechism can help you remember the core beliefs of Christianity. Take time this week to learn the answer to this question and memorize Romans 3:10–12. Allow God to transform your heart, mind, and actions as you seek to obey God.



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