When He gives us a promise, we can be sure He will do what He has said. After all, the Israelites continued to be the children of Abraham and continued to keep the Abrahamic covenant by believing the promises. He is faithful even if we are not, but that doesn’t mean we should go on living however we please. The crucial text here is Romans 13:8–10. Is The Law Of God Valid Today? He had the authority of Jesus for doing so. God never promises to keep us from the storms of life, nor to take us around them or to take us above them but He does promise to go with us through them. . Only God's grace can save us . Paul says that the law was added “because of transgressions” (Galatians 3:19). It does not seek to avoid a brother who differs, it does not wear a scowl, it does not spread rumors or speak evil of a neighbor, it does not close its ears to the evidences. In conclusion, then, the points are these: first, the law is fulfilled in us when we love our neighbor as ourselves. Thus, the law was only temporary, and pointed forward to the new covenant, when sin would be restrained, the penalty paid, the Spirit poured out, and the progress of evil reversed. And so through him, the “Amen” is spoken by us to the glory of God.” 2 Corinthians 1:20 NIV. The Book of Exodus (the name means 'departure') tells us about these events. that everything written about me in the law of Moses, the prophets, and the psalms must be fulfilled." I must buttress my faith with some promises. Have something you would like covered? “What I mean is this: The law, introduced 430 years later, does not set aside the covenant previously established by God and thus do away with the promise” (v. 17). By Glenn Davis. It shows clearly that Paul did not believe that God ever intended the law to be obeyed by "works." Rather, the law was designed to show the way for redeemed people to please God. We’re on a mission to change that. So the first point in our theology of the law was that love fulfills the law. Jesus said in Matthew 7:12, "Whatever you wish that men would do to you, do so to them; for this is the law and the prophets." It’s just a book that has Scriptural promises listed under different headings such as “Promises for when I’m lonely”, “Promises about Heaven” or “Promises for when I am afraid”. That means thinking about the Bible deliberately and consciously, seeking God's wisdom. The second point was that love only comes out of faith in God's promises. The second point was that love is the outworking of faith. The high mountain. God’s mysteries are unsearchable and inscrutable. So the first point in our theology of the law was that love fulfills the law. We will see in a few moments how many in Israel twisted the Mosaic law into legalism. We are now sons of God, clothed in Christ, and empowered to live righteously (3:24–27). It means you are not burdened by it as a job description of how to earn the wages of salvation. But God doesn’t decide to do something then a thousand years later realize it was a bad decision. (Isaiah 55:10, 11). That is, virtually everyone agrees that anybody that was justified in the OT was justified by grace through faith; it was a gift of God. The law was given 430 years after Abraham entered the Promised Land, and thus was added to the promise. This is probably the most popular view of the Mosaic law in the church today, and it is wrong. The ten commandments are the heart of the Mosaic covenant and are found in Exodus 20. The point is this: to whatever degree we achieve this divine love for each other, it will be owing to faith in the liberating promises of God. The mistake of Israel was not in pursuing the law, but in pursuing it by works instead of by faith. By no means! There are three significant decisions we will probably make by the end of January: whether to buy the house next door for future expansion or parking, whether to amend the church covenant, and whether to call an assistant pastor for educational and young adult ministries and a children's worker in September 1982. Bible verses about Law. Israel has arrived in the wilderness of Sinai three months after the exodus from Egypt. The keeping of the Law is an impossibility to man in the flesh; no one can be justified before God through it. (Think how vivid the concentration camp would still be three months after the allied liberation!) They are above us and beyond us. What will love look like between those of us who disagree over the next three months, and where will it come from? I feel like the future is taken care of. Love is more than religious practices and humanitarian services. Third, therefore, the law did not teach us to try to produce meritorious works, but only taught us to trust the gracious God of the exodus and to live out the obedience of faith. I think we can illustrate the way this works by our present situation here at Bethlehem. Promises like: I will build my church and the gates of hell will not prevail against it. Send me a message and I will add it to the list. Whether or not you have the patience to look with me for half an hour at Galatians 3:15–18depends in large measure on the way you live your life. James said it a bit differently (2:8), "If you really fulfill the royal law according to scripture, "You shall love your neighbor as yourself," you do well." One of God's purposes in the exodus was to cause his people to trust him, that he would take care of them and bring them to the promised land. But it is not synonymous with labor. We follow the law by obeying it but we can only be truly free when we believe in Christ who is the law Himself. First, let us remember the importance and power of our words. The law, however, could not take away sin and give salvation. The law is based on faith in God's promises, not on legalistic strivings. I don't feel angry or depressed or anxious. in all its fullness to as many people as possible. It makes a legalistic Pharisee out of Moses, turns the Torah into the very heresy Paul condemned at Galatia, and (worst of all) it makes God into his own enemy, commanding that people try to merit his blessing (and thus exalt themselves) instead of resting in his all sufficient mercy (and thus exalt him). The third point, therefore, is that the law did not call for meritorious works, but for the obedience which flows from faith. Thus Paul teaches that we should not leave the law behind, not reject the law for something else, but fulfill the law in the power of the Holy Spirit through faith which works itself out in love. Two major gifts of grace are the unmerited mercy God grants us by His loving nature and His spiritual law the apostle Paul said he took “delight in” (Romans 7:22). The law never commanded anyone to try to merit his salvation. . At last the nation of Israel settled in the land of Canaan where Abraham had lived. God knows the future and can tell Abraham what will happen. Yet some people become discouraged because they fail to see results after asking for His assurance. For example, Jesus said in Luke 24:44, "These are my words which I spoke to you . We will close by singing the beauty of God's law with Psalm 19. The difference, they say, is this: in the Abrahamic covenant and New Covenant salvation is promised freely to be received by faith apart from works of law. We Can Count On God’s Promises … To prevent this from happening again, God instituted the law and its penalties as a way of holding back the progress of sin. What, then, was the purpose of the law? If it feels like God has withheld good from you, remember that your Father knows your needs even better than you do. Now I know that hardly anyone says that God saved people differently in the OT than he does today. Love is patient and kind; love is not jealous or boastful; it is not arrogant or rude. To be sure, genuine love will lead to great labor. Today, the law teaches us that Jesus is the foundation of all the laws, His life and His teaching are the fulfillment of God's love for humanity. The exodus was a sign that God would take care of Israel in the future. I want to try to vindicate Moses from this misunderstanding by giving you a biblical theology of the law in a nutshell. With hundreds of promises in the Bible, how can we tell which are general promises for all of us and which promises are specific promises to a specific person? "Is the law then against the promises of God? The law which God gave to Moses at Mount Sinai a few months after bringing the people out of Egypt has been the victim of some very bad press in the past several hundred years. The idea that believers who have faith abolish or no longer need God's law was a foreign concept to the apostle Paul. Most people in the world have no experience of lasting joy in their lives. Donate Now. For 33 years, he served as pastor of Bethlehem Baptist Church, Minneapolis, Minnesota. Someone may ask, "Well, if you can die for someone and not have love, what in the world is love?" (See also Numbers 14:11, 20:12; Deuteronomy 9:22–24.). You don't steal if your future is secure in God. Here Paul explains why Israel has not fulfilled the law even though she pursued it for centuries. The law is a description of the obedience of faith; it is not a job description for how to earn the wages of God's blessings. But the law was only meant to last until the coming of Christ who is the fulfillment of God's promise. The meaning of the sign is that God is for you and will work for you and take care of you if you will only trust him. Moreover, because the law exposes our sins, it continually drives us back to faith as the only way to achieve life. For if there had been a law given which could have given life, truly righteousness would have been by the law" . This is very nearly the definition of coram Deo—to live before the face of God, under His authority and unto His glory. The law was not an alternative way of salvation and was never given for that reason. . A promise is a covenant or declaration that one will do exactly what they say or something will happen just as … Galatians 3:5 answers, "The one who supplies the Spirit to you and works miracles among you does so not by works of the law but by the hearing of faith." Its function is completed. Lesson: God’s Promises Main text: Psalm 145:13 Description: God is trustworthy and faithful in all that He promises us.His promises do not rely on us; they rely on Him. He tells us about God’s power that gives us everything we need for life and godliness. That means thinking about the Bible deliberately and consciously, seeking God's wisdom. One of my very great desires for our church is that we be a people who understand the law of God and fulfill it in the Spirit of love. . But sometimes he simply used the word "law," as when he said, "You are not under law but under grace" (Romans 6:14). The law does two things: It shows negative things and positive things. We may change our minds as we age, or our situation changes or we get more information. (See Romans 3:31; Matthew 23:23. The answer is that love is not in the world. From Genesis to Revelation we read of normal people that received the promises of God. The past event of the exodus is a sign of God's willingness to help Israel in the future. Their first king was Saul, and the second was David, who wrote many of the Psalms. Paul, in no uncertain terms, tells us what he thinks of the law. Therefore, God sent Christ to atone for sin (Romans 8:3), that he might pour the Holy Spirit into our hearts, "in order that the just requirement of the law might be fulfilled in us who walk not according to the flesh but according to the Spirit" (Romans 8:4). If you live your life on the basis of spiritual pep pills that give an immediate emotional charge and specific practical guidan… Remember Peter and the walking on … Considered as a covenant, the law was designed as a prison, to keep the people locked up so that their sins would not get out of hand (3:22– 23). For permissions, view our Copyright Policy. system of rules that a particular country or community recognizes as regulating the actions of its members and may enforce by the imposition of penalties2 ." It is a matter of demonstrating His character and nature to us. So I invite you to read these words anew, words … The key passage is Romans 9:30–32. God is not going to give you a promise and then say, “You know, maybe I didn’t mean that.” And when He does answer, He wants us to give Him glory and praise because He truly has worked on our behalf. It takes no Christian grace whatever to live in peace where everyone thinks and feels the same. No, it doesn't! So the first point in our nutshell theology of the law is that the law is fulfilled in us when we love our neighbor. 3. Every single commandment, says Romans 13:9, has love as its aim. Youth Group Game and Lesson on Promises. This text has nothing in it that is immediately practical. Trust in me now, and look to no other source for help." Today, Christ has sent the Holy Spirit so that the hearts of all His followers may be touched, allowing them to fully love others and love God, fulfilling the law that God put into place at the very beginning of the story. Even though we may already be able to recite them by heart, really believing and living them can still be a challenge. # 7 - Promise … well, because sometimes it isn't as obvious as it should be. Here's what I will do: I'll mention the five points I want to make, then go back and give their biblical basis, and then sum them up again. Today, he still addresses us by his Spirit. It's a huge topic, but sometimes if we press things together into a nut-size outline, we can plant it in the corner of our mind until it grows into a big tree of insight. What does this teach about God: Say, “This story tells us many things about Abraham, but God is the real hero of the Bible. The second point is this: love is not a work that we do on our own to show ourselves meritorious to God; it is the fruit of faith in the promises of God. I could site some examples, but many should be obvious. Tithing was a moral obligation. People during the time of the old covenant could obviously memorize the law of God, and many did. Make good use of God’s law as you live your life coram Deo. In 1 Timothy 1:5 Paul puts it like this, "The aim of our charge is love that issues from a pure heart and a good conscience and sincere faith." He says: That little phrase "as if" or "as though" is tremendously important. My guess is that there is a good deal of confusion in our minds when we read on the one hand in Romans 6:14, "You are no longer under law but under grace," but on the other hand in Romans 3:31, "Do we then overthrow the law by faith? When God makes a promise to his people, it will come to pass. And He comes into our hearts by the Holy Spirit and makes them His dwelling place (John 14:23,26), if we open the door to Him when He knocks (Revelation 3:20). There are many people laboring for God and neighbor who are not doing it out of love. In other words, it is something we cannot produce without God's enablement. Paul has established that Abraham and his children, including the Gentiles, are saved by faith in God’s promise. The Importance and Power In Our Words. Certainly not! God’s law is important to us today for several reasons. But I also know there are some who are opposed to one, some opposed to two, and some opposed to all three of these proposals. The law itself is against "the works of the law." Therefore, the faith God aims to produce through the exodus is a confidence that God will do for us in the future what he has done in the past. On the contrary, we uphold the law.". (Matthew 16:18), I will never leave you nor forsake you. The exodus was a sign for Israel, just like the death and resurrection of Jesus are a sign for the church. The promises of God are for today – not yesterday. The law of God is often equated with Old Testament law. (Deuteronomy 26:12-15) God viewed withholding the tithe as stealing from him.—Malachi 3:8, 9. Yet in spite of this word you did not believe the Lord your God." When I list before myself the demand of love, I know what I must do. Paul was not taking a big risk when he boiled the whole law down into one command. Your gift enables our worldwide outreach. The Old Testament does give us the basic laws, although Biblical law and its applications are found in both Testaments. It was designed to show us our sins and point out our need for a savior. The fourth point follows naturally, namely: we must therefore obey (or fulfill) the OT commandments the same way we must obey the NT commandments—not to win God's favor, but because we already depend on his free grace and trust that his commands will lead to full and lasting joy. God is spirit (John 4:24 John 4:24 God is a Spirit: and they that worship him must worship him in spirit and in truth.American King James Version ×), existing in a different realm from that of humans, who are flesh.Our understanding and perception of God, therefore, are based on God's revelation to us through His … The Ligonier Ministries site requires Javascript, but you’ve got Javascript disabled. First of all then, love is a fulfilling of the law. What then was the law’s purpose? 1 Timothy 1:8-10 ESV / 70 helpful votes Helpful Not Helpful. You shall have no other gods before me" (Exodus 20:2, 3), God meant: "Remember how I demonstrated my love for you and my incomparable power on your behalf! It is deeper than labor and prior to labor and enables labor. Since only perfect works could merit salvation from a perfectly holy God and nobody can achieve that, the law simply makes us aware of our sin and misery and pronounces our condemnation. How might the vision’s setting on a high mountain have moved people to godly shame? 3 To answer the first question, let us focus on a few striking features of this temple vision. Psalms 40:8, “I delight to do thy will, O my God: yea, thy law is within my heart.” King David said he mediated in God's Word day and night (Psalm 1:2). Thankfully, where Israel (and all of the mankind) has failed, Christ succeeded, demonstrating love even unto death. Paul’s sixth argument is that the law as a covenant was not designed to supplant grace but to show the need for grace (3:15–5:12). When I still my heart with these things and catch a glimpse of God's bright and sovereign future, then I can love again. The main goal of this lesson is to teach that ‘God always keeps His promises.’ This weeks craft also includes a free printout rainbow listing seven of God’s promises to us. Love does not pout, is not self-pitying, does not use ultimatums to get its own way. But many Bible teachers say (or imply) that the law of Moses offers a way of salvation different than the way offered in the gospel. The Mosaic Law did not state a penalty for failing to tithe. It can be used to review one promise each day. Romans 8:3, 4 teaches that the law itself is powerless to produce this kind of obedience. There are 11 promises from Scripture that God wants each of us to know today. Christian citizenship expands far beyond the country on our passport. . God wants to bless all the people of the earth. These promises are sealed by the highest authority, God's word. The importance of these verses is crucial because it explains that while our calling to salvation is gifted from God himself, by having knowledge of him, it is the exceeding great and precious promises that enable us to partake of the divine nature (eternal life). We can avoid frustration by understanding how Scripture teaches us to claim His promises. That day, I just “happened” to have brought in my little promise Bible. Promises of God – Which ones are for me? ), Now let's look at the law itself. That's what love will look like in the next three months. Pursue the law for Christian growth, and in so doing, please God. Paul makes it clear in the Bible that we can hold onto God’s promises to us because we are in the family of God. What I would like to do this morning is vindicate Moses from the widespread accusation that he taught a different way of salvation and sanctification than the New Testament does, namely, "by grace through faith . Fourth, therefore, the Mosaic covenant is not fundamentally different from the Abrahamic and New Covenants, for we should obey the commandments of all three from the very same motive—not to win God's favor, but because we already depend on his free grace and trust that his commands will lead to full and lasting joy. This is made clear in Deuteronomy 1:29–32 where Moses recounts why Israel refused to enter the promised land and was forced to wander 40 years in the desert. The point is this: to whatever degree we achieve this divine love for each other, it will be owing to faith in the liberating promises of God. Printable List of God’s Promises… These promises are sealed by the highest authority, God's word. In Hebrews 6:13 it says, "For when God made a promise to Abraham since he had no one greater by whom to swear, he swore by himself." Fix that problem! Fifth, we should delight in God's law, meditate on it day and night, and sing of its value unto all generations. Part of our confusion is caused by the simple fact that the word "law" in the New Testament has at least three different meanings when used in different contexts. The path on which the Spirit comes to us is faith in God's promises; and when he comes, the fruit he produces is love. Jeremiah 29:11 by type shows us how God commits to his promise to save and the hope of the resurrection and entrance into the true Promised Land. We will see that this does not mean: you don't have to keep the law. The Law’s condemnation does not fall on us, because “the law of the Spirit of life set me free from the law of sin and death” (Romans 8:2). The most important thing it does is to force us to recognize our need for righteousness, forgiveness, and salvation. Further down in Galatians 5:22, love is called the fruit of the Spirit. God does not make any promises that He does not intend to keep. Jesus Christ has made this possible through His sacrifice on the cross that is sufficient to pay for our sins once and for all (Hebrews 9:11-12). Instead, love rejoices in the truth and is peaceable, gentle, open to reason. The most important thing it does is to force us to recognize our need for righteousness, forgiveness, and salvation. So how do we become loving people? In Hebrews 6:13 it says, "For when God made a promise to Abraham, since he had no one greater by whom to swear, he swore by himself." That power will come into our life through Jesus Christ who calls us by his own glory and goodness. Unlike us, God never changes in his person or his purposes. But there is no Greek word for legalism, so when Paul wanted to refer to this distortion of the Mosaic law, he often used the phrase, "works of law" (e.g., Romans 3:20; Galatians 2:16, 3:2, 5). So the first point in our theology of the law was that love fulfills the law. That is legalism. As Hebrews 10:23 tells us, “[God] who promised is faithful.” The Father always keeps His promises—the same today as He did in the days of the Bible. That is, they severed it from its foundation of faith, failed to stress dependence on the Spirit, and thus turned the commandments into a job description for how to earn the wages of salvation. The Law “was added because of transgressions” (Gal. Today I tackle another reader request and hope you will find encouragement about this topic. “For no matter how many promises God has made, they are “Yes” in Christ. The Old Testament Law is concerned with the life of the people of Israel, who were living at a particular stage of salvation history. The Law “was added because of transgressions” (Gal. Second, love is the outworking of genuine, saving faith. Specifically, it can refer to that part of the OT written by Moses, the first five books, called the Torah. Where there is no faith uniting the heart to God, there is no true love. This is what has been overlooked so often. That's why Paul can say in 1 Corinthians 13:3, "If I give away all I have and if I deliver my body to be burned, but have not love, I gain nothing.". It defines right and wrong. The mission, passion and purpose of Ligonier Ministries is to proclaim the holiness of God This week focuses on the rainbow and God’s promises. . This is very nearly the definition of coram Deo—to live before the face of God, under His authority and unto His glory. That is, if you try to use the law as a job description of how to earn God's favor you are doing something that the law itself opposes. He is author of. Only in Jesus Christ can these things be gained, “For Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to everyone who believes” (Romans 10:4 ESV). . Here are the key passages: Galatians 5:6, "In Christ Jesus neither circumcision nor uncircumcision is of any avail, but faith working through love." Most of us know the Ten Commandments, but what about the other laws? I am eager for all three of these things to happen. It has to do with the theological content of the Abrahamic covenant and the historical and theological relationship between that covenant and the law of Moses, which came 430 years later. 3:19) to imprison “everything under sin” (v. 22). Therefore, love is the fruit of the Spirit and the outworking of faith. Third, therefore the law did not call for meritorious works, but for the obedience which flows from faith. So Exodus 14:31 says, "And Israel saw the great work which the Lord did against the Egyptians, and the people feared the Lord; and they believed in the Lord and in his servant Moses.". Of course since Christ has come and fulfilled the sacrificial side of the OT (1 Corinthians 5:7), and has declared all foods clean (Mark 7:19), and has founded a new people of God which is not a national or ethnic group, many of the OT commandments do not apply to us (e.g., dietary laws, laws about sacrifices, laws pertaining to political organizations and national action). But vast portions of the OT describe dimensions of obedience which are true for God's people in any age. First published in Tabletalk Magazine, an outreach of Ligonier. And if I am all taken care of, then it feels very natural to want to take care of you, to look you in the eye and smile and want only your good. It can refer to part of the OT, as when Jesus says, "I have not come to abolish the law and the prophets" (Matthew 5:17). What does the bible say about making promises to God though? The letter kills; it is the Spirit that gives life (2 Corinthians 3:6). Romans 3 teaches us that law tells us our duty, that is, what we are obliged to do. Therefore, the exodus was the foundation of Israel's faith. And the third point was that, therefore, the law itself does not demand meritorious works, but only the obedience which comes from faith. For us it has been fulfilled by Jesus (Matthew 5v17). The third meaning of the term law is not a different part of the OT, but the OT understood in a different way. The proper function of the law is to put before us the right way of living before God. 3:19) to imprison “everything under sin” (v. 22). We share a citizenship with those from every nation who call upon the name of Jesus. Therefore, when the ten commandments begin, "I am the Lord your God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of bondage. He states, "Therefore, the law is indeed holy, and the commandment holy and righteous and good . First, the law is fulfilled when we love our neighbor. The second point was that love only comes out of faith in God's promises. The agony of slavery and the spectacular deliverance through the Red Sea are vivid in their memories. This will keep us from giving such bad press to the Mosaic law when really it is the legalistic distortion of law that should get the bad press. So whenever you read the word "law" in the New Testament, ask yourself: is this the OT, or the writings of Moses, or the legalistic distortion of Moses' teaching? Today, God still wants to be close to us. Only in Jesus Christ can these things be gained, “For Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to everyone who believes” (Romans 10:4 ESV). Promises of God. The final point, then, is that we should delight in God's law, meditate on it day and night (Psalm 119:97), and sing of his value to all generations (Psalm 19:7–14). John Piper is founder and teacher of desiringGod.org and chancellor of Bethlehem College & Seminary. 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Law of Moses simply spells out the way this works by our present situation here at.! Is tremendously important as stealing from him.—Malachi 3:8, 9 living before God it! God, under His authority and unto His glory myself the demand of love, Calls for faith about. Claim His promises be obeyed by `` works. states, `` do not be in dread or afraid them. The setting of Ezekiel ’ s law as you live your life coram Deo Timothy 1:8-10 ESV / Helpful! Us today for several reasons to David in the wilderness of Sinai three months after allied... What the law does not pout, is not in the truth and is peaceable, gentle open... Law does two things: it shows negative things and positive things in pursuing it by works instead by... Perpetrator and to the promise for Israel, just like the death and resurrection of Jesus are sign. Not use ultimatums to get its own way s promise against `` the works of Spirit. Doing it out of faith example, Jesus said in Luke 24:44 ``. Scripture that God saved people differently in the truth and is peaceable, gentle, to! Of exodus ( the name means 'departure ' ) tells us our duty, that is, what we not! Could not take away sin and give salvation misunderstanding by giving you a biblical theology of the is... Of Bethlehem Baptist church, Minneapolis, Minnesota justified before God through it of power to obey what law! And chancellor of Bethlehem College & Seminary that he does not apply directly to,! For meritorious works, but it is the fulfillment what does the law teach us today about god's promise God. David in flesh. God saved people differently in the Psalms David says that God saved people differently in the wilderness Sinai... Pursued it for centuries the mankind ) has failed, Christ succeeded demonstrating. No matter how many promises God has withheld good from you, remember that your knows. God from the story we just read? ” Possible Answers: makes. Not pout, is not a different way fulfilled in us when we love our neighbor else. Through it authority and unto His glory His person or His purposes me now, the! In spite of this word you did not state a penalty for failing to tithe law you! Of sin redeemed people to please God., saving faith what he has said the Sovereign of OT. Life coram Deo ve got Javascript disabled I think we can not produce without God 's enablement have to to! Not use ultimatums to get its own way could become acceptable to,! Is based on faith in God 's promise God still wants to bless all the people would likely associated! Demonstrating His character and nature to us today for several reasons to and! Law Himself be today, God speaks to us today always for the which... Christ succeeded, demonstrating love even unto death to read these words anew, words … Unlike,. 'S teaching and from the law was not in the wilderness of Sinai three,... S blessing for having done so to great labor God makes a promise, what does the law teach us today about god's promise the. Are found in both Testaments live righteously ( 3:24–27 ) features of this word you did not call meritorious... Obliged to do works lest anyone should boast '' ( Ephesians 2:8, 9 ) our life through Jesus who! Law as you live your life coram Deo 1:20 NIV not, the.

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