February 7, 2013
We are studying the book of Leviticus…and at face value…it is a book about rules. In fact, the only rules that anybody seems to know in the book are the ones that make God look cruel or foolish. And then people snicker and laugh at how silly God is and how silly anybody who believes in Him is. Let me put it bluntly….
WRONG! Like any book of the bible, or anything in life for that matter, you need to look at things in context. The Men For Nations Leader, Dick Simmons gives a GREAT expose on the importance of Leviticus… And by the way, I don’t think that Jesus will snicker a whole lot when you meet Him face to face without the atonement of His sacrificial blood…
Here is how God puts it…
Leviticus 11:45 – I am the Lord, who brought you up out of Egypt to be your God; therefore be holy, because I am holy. (NIV)
Leviticus goes in to great detail about a LOT of things in life….and God does that so His people will be set apart…and holy…and pure. And by the way, many of the “rules” in the book, and especially concerning diets are found to be excellent for us physically. A kosher diet is very healthy.
The rules concerning sex are for OUR benefit…because God knows that deviant sexual behavior is destructive physically for us. Ask anybody with a STD… And deviant sexual behavior is destructive for us mentally. Ask anybody who is in a homosexual relationship…they are not happy…because true joy only comes with doing things God’s way… Anyone living in that relationship may want you to not accuse them so they feel better about themselves, but they are not happy.
The rules concerning sickness, leprosy, etc…are to prevent the spread of sickness to everyone else. Pretty impressive since it was written thousands of years before the invention of a microscope and the understanding of germs….
Ignaz Semmelweis is the founder of the germ theory around 1847. If he, and many doctors would have read Leviticus …think of the billions of lives that could have been saved.
You see, Leviticus isn’t a book about rules for the sake of rules…but it is a book about rules that will make your life good, healthy, and complete.
BUT…the really important part of Leviticus is that all of those rules were required….because of our desire to say yes to sin, and no to God. And STILL…STILL….in light of all of that, Jesus willingly gave up his life an an atonement for our sin…so that we may live for Him on earth, and with Him for eternity. Don’t believe me?
John 15:13 – Greater love has no one than this, that he lay down his life for his friends. (NIV)
Oh yeah…and be encouraged that when you make a stand for Jesus, and tell others about the love of God….they will make fun of you, and laugh at you, and think that you are silly….and will hate you and ostracize you. Why do I say be encouraged? Because Jesus told us that it would happen…
John 15:18-25 – 18“If the world hates you, keep in mind that it hated me first. 19If you belonged to the world, it would love you as its own. As it is, you do not belong to the world, but I have chosen you out of the world. That is why the world hates you. 20Remember the words I spoke to you: ‘No servant is greater than his master. If they persecuted me, they will persecute you also. If they obeyed my teaching, they will obey yours also. 21They will treat you this way because of my name, for they do not know the One who sent me. 22If I had not come and spoken to them, they would not be guilty of sin. Now, however, they have no excuse for their sin. 23He who hates me hates my Father as well. 24If I had not done among them what no one else did, they would not be guilty of sin. But now they have seen these miracles, and yet they have hated both me and my Father.25But this is to fulfill what is written in their Law: ‘They hated me without reason. (NIV)
BUT….BUT….keep at it and keep telling them. Because their fate for eternity depends on it. And no matter how much they scorn and ridicule, Jesus still died for them….so that they may have life.
Grace and Peace, Dan