Learning from Leviticus
I just love me some Old Testament. Seriously. It amazes me to read about God's redemptive heart and see how the story continually points to Jesus. I'm traveling through it right now and after reading through Leviticus, a book I have a feeling is often overlooked in personal Bible readings, a couple themes kept surfacing. While there may be many things that are confusing or planted in a different cultural context, our God is the same God. He included this book in His Word for a reason, and so I believe He has important things to say to us through it.
First of all, sin is serious business. It's not something to joke about, laugh at, or deal with lightly. For some reason, because we don't necessarily see the effects of our sin like those who came before Jesus, it is quite easy for sin to not be taken as seriously. If the law was not upheld, if it was broken even in the slightest way, the consequences were great. No matter what side of redemptive history you are on, sin is sin. And the consequence for sin is death. Reading about the various sacrifices and ways of making atonement for sin left me humbled at the work of Jesus on the cross. His death made atonement for us and that's definitely not something to take lightly or think about only once a year. When we sin we need to stand beneath the cross and see the gruesome effects of it. When we sin we need to see the stripes on our Savior and be reminded to not take it lightly. When we sin we need to hear our King Jesus cry out, "It is finished!" and go and sin no more.
Secondly, throughout the book of Leviticus, the people of God were called to be holy because He is holy. That is a calling echoed in 1 Peter. Just as Israel had a holy calling, the Church has a holy calling. The people of God are called to holiness, nothing less. It might seem like a daunting task, something we are unfit for and destined to fail. But when God calls you to something, for something, He equips you. He does not leave you alone to figure it out. He has given us the Holy Spirit. His Holy Spirit. And the same God that created all that is, the same God that took the penalty of sin and conquered the grave, the same God that waits patiently for all to know Him...that God lives in us. He has equipped us for our calling. And our holy lives will bring others to His throne. Our holy lives will bring glory and fame to His name.
Thirdly, the Lord God is worthy. Be reverent before Him. Fear Him. Our casual, comfortable culture often misses this. He is holy. His name is holy and not to be profaned. He is God and is to be feared. He is God and there is no other. He has no competition. He will not be mocked. He is the Lord our God. And we can find confidence, peace, hope, joy in that.
May we never forget, if even for a moment, the gravity of our sin and the work of Christ on the cross, our call to be holy and the holiness of our God.
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Sarah loves Jesus and her family and is passionate about addressing the urgent spiritual and physical needs around the world. She is the wife of Spencer and mama of Katherine and Claire, and they live in Nashville, TN. She runs a photography business with her husband and writes in order to offer encouragement and invite others to choose grace, joy, and gratitude in the adventure and the mundane. She loves traveling and reading; she will choose unsweet tea over sweet and bootcut jeans over skinny; and she is all sorts of awkward with small talk but thrives with deep conversations.