“Whoever commits sin transgresses also the law: for sin is the transgression of the law.” 1John 3:4.
The law demands perfect obedience. “Whosoever shall keep the whole law, and yet offend in one point, he is guilty of all” (James 2:10). Not one of those ten precepts can be broken without disloyalty to the God of heaven. The least deviation from its requirements, by neglect or wilful transgression, is sin, and every sin exposes the sinner to the wrath of God. Obedience was the only condition upon which ancient Israel was to receive the fulfilment of the promises which made them the highly favoured people of God; and obedience to that law will bring as great blessings to individuals and nations now as it would have brought to the Hebrews. …
“By the law is the knowledge of sin”; for “sin is the transgression of the law”. It is through the law that men are convicted of sin; and they must feel themselves sinners, exposed to the wrath of God, before they will realize their need of a Saviour. Satan is continually at work to lessen man’s estimate of the grievous character of sin. And those who trample the law of God under their feet are doing the work of the great deceiver; for they are rejecting the only rule by which they can define sin, and bring it home to the conscience of the transgressor.
The Law of God reaches to those secret purposes, which, though they may be sinful, are often passed over lightly, but which are in reality the basis and the test of character. It is the mirror into which the sinner is to look if he would have a correct knowledge of his moral character. And when he sees himself condemned by that great standard of righteousness, his next move must be to repent of his sins, and seek forgiveness through Christ. Failing to do this, many try to break the mirror which reveals their defects, to make void the law which points out the blemishes in their life and character. –Selected Messages, book 1, pp. 218, 219.