Matthew 5:18

New Testament

17 “Do not think that I have come to abolish the law or the prophets. I have not come to abolish these things but to fulfill them. 18 I tell you the truth, until heaven and earth pass away not the smallest letter or stroke of a letter will pass from the law until everything takes place. 19 So anyone who breaks one of the least of these commands and teaches others to do so will be called least in the kingdom of heaven, but whoever obeys them and teaches others to do so will be called great in the kingdom of heaven. 20 For I tell you, unless your righteousness goes beyond that of the experts in the law and the Pharisees, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven!

Genesis Rabbah 10


AND THE HEAVEN AND THE EARTH WERE FINISHED—WAYYEKULLU (ul, 1). I have seen an end to every purpose (tiklah), but Thy commandment is exceeding broad: everything has a measure, heaven and earth have a measure, except one thing which has no measure: and what is it? The Torah, [of which it is written,] The measure thereof is longer than the earth, etc. (Job x1, 9). Another interpretation: ‘I have seen an end to every purpose’ refers to the work of the heaven, as it is said, AND THE HEAVEN AND THE EARTH WERE FINISHED.

 Notes and References

"... The Rabbinical doctrine is adequately illustrated in Matthew 5:18, 'Until heaven and earth pass away, not the smallest letter, not the apex of a letter, shall pass away from the law till it all be done.' ... A parallel occurs in Genesis Rabbah (10:1) on Genesis 2:1, whence, by combination with Psalm 119:96 and Job 11:9, it is concluded that heaven and earth have measure (limit) but the Law has none. That is, heaven and earth will have an end (Isaiah 51:6) but the Law will not ..."

Whitfield Mowbray, D. D. The Johannine Logos Doctrine and its Sources (pp. 262-263) Durham University, 1952

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