We are so delighted you have joined us. About two dozen of us read the Bible chronologically together. If you have not been able to keep up with the readings in Leviticus, join us this coming week as we delve into Numbers. I would love for you to leave any comment at all today. Share from Leviticus or from your own readings of the Word this week or whatever is on your heart. I will not be commenting back to you on this post as I am working at an academic competition this week with no computer access. See you at the end of the week to announce the winner of the Leap Day Giveaway. Keep on posting your quotes on Leap Day Giveaway for a chance to win.
I took a course in speed reading eons ago. Every time I come to Leviticus in reading the Bible through in a year, I speed read Leviticus or skip it. But not this time! I was so captured by this book and it so totally surprised me. Be holy! For I AM the Lord your God. I am so excited to share with you that I got anything out of Leviticus. That was so encouraging to me---because I think the Holy Spirit is so showing up in my life to make me alive. I’m so grateful! This does not mean I'm spiritual and you're not if you sped read Lev. This so surprised me and has nothing to do with me.
These are just words but they flow from my heart’s desire. One thing that I ask. One thing. And now, like you, I must work out my own salvation with fear and trembling. Be holy, Leviticus says. So what does holiness look like for me and for you this day?
One thing it means is repentance. What lingers in my heart from Leviticus is "Have Mercy on me, O Holy God." Here's eleven thoughts that stirred and shook me from this book that lingers with me. Post a comment or two, even just a phrase, of what your reading of the Scriptures meant to you this week.
GOD IS CALLING YOUR NAME
Leviticus 1:1 says the LORD called to Moses. Fifty times God speaks in this book to Moses face to face. Twenty of the 27 chapters start out with the phrase, “The Lord spoke to Moses... .” I think that gives much reason to really listen if we knew God was going to say something to our face. Just like to Moses, He is calling to us and speaking to us. Wonder what He is saying to you this morning? The Hebrew word for Leviticus means “and He called.”
DO I APPROACH MY GOD ON WHAT I THINK
In Leviticus 10:1-3, Aaron’s two sons did not follow God’s command and God consumed them in fire and said: “Among those who approach Me, I will show myself holy.” We can approach a holy God but it is always on his terms, not ours. Leviticus is "the calling of God's people to minister to God, to minister before God," "Therefore, since we have a great High Priest, let us hold firmly to our faith. Let us then approach the throne of grace with confidence so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need." Hebrews 4: 14-16.
SIT IN SILENCE IN OUR SUFFERING
Leviticus 10:3 Aaron remained silent, even though both of his sons fell dead. Whoa. It is so hard to sit in silence in the midst of tragedy. Let the sun go down and sit in our circumstances and listen. In the abundance of words, sin is unavoidable.
REND YOUR HEART NOT YOUR GARMENTS
Fifteen years ago, I reached a dead end in my life, full of despair. God spoke to me through Joel 2:13-14. “Rend your heart and not your garments. Return to the Lord, your God, for He is gracious and compassionate, slow to anger and abounding in love, and He relents from sending calamity on you. Who knows He may turn and have pity on you and leave behind a blessing.” A priest in Old Testament days was not supposed to tear his garments, somewhat of staging a protest over what God was doing in his life and the life of others. God wants us to examine our hearts. Rend our hearts, back to HIM. Leviticus 10:6 – don’t tear your clothes, Aaron over what God has done in your life, taking your sons. Rend your heart, not your garments. Whatever God is doing with you today, rend rightly and return to HIM. Rend your heart. So what does that look like in you?
IS OUR BEAUTIFUL GOD PLEASED WITH WHAT WE OFFER
Leviticus 10:19 – “Is our God pleased with this offering?” What do we offer HIM this very day that pleases Him? What repentance does He require to make us holy as He is? Offer our suffering. Offer our joys. Offer ourselves. And just like Abraham and Isaac, where’s the wood? What sacrifice do we make to HIM today? Where’s the wood?
HOW DO WE APPROACH GOD 16: 3 "This is how Aaron is to enter the sanctuary area: with a sin offering and to make atonement for himself and his household. Same statement repeated again in Verse 11. Very detailed ceremonious offering. Verse 16, he will make atonement for the Most Holy Place because of the uncleanness and rebellion of the Israelites, whatever their sins have been. Our High Priest is able to sympathize with our weaknesses for He was tempted in every way, just as we are today---yet without sin." Hebrews 4:15. The priest is to make atonement for himself, his household, and the whole community. 16:17.
Is that how I live my life? 16:34 – and it is done as the LORD commands for us who now live in the new covenant. What does God command of me today? Is it of no discussion for me? He commands me to love my neighbors and to love my enemies and I have a few of both. So I will love them. Out of my love for my beautiful God. It cannot come from duty but out of a repentant heart, clean hands. So what does love look like today? It may be action; it may be silence; it may be moving toward my husband, my son; it may be humbling myself and stepping down before a friend putting their interests ahead of mine. IDK. I wonder what Love will look like. I wonder if we will be like 16:34 and do all that the LORD commands us in listening to Love's Voice and living life today?
Leviticus 18:3 Do not do as they do in Egypt or in Canaan or fill in the blank where you live. Don’t conform to this world. Befriend holiness not worldliness. Wonder what that would look like in the world in which we live? The way we walk. The way we talk. The ways we live. “Do not follow their practices.”
WHAT FOOD DO I GIVE TO MY GOD
In Leviticus 20:6, the priests presented to God the offerings, the food of God. Today, we offer HIM our will, His will. “My food is to do the will of HIM Who sent me.” John 4:34.
GOD GIVES REST IN DEEP PLACES IN OUR HEART
Leviticus 23:3 talks of taking a Sabbath, a sacred place for us. God calls to all of us in Matthew 11:28 to those who are weary of rushing and pushing and doing more. “Come to Me all you who are burdened and I will give you rest. Take my yoke on you and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light." The details of this book that they were to follow were mind boggling, overwhelming to me. How would they remember all these regulations? Set our face like a flint. Set our hearts to follow Christ. He gives rest in those places where we are not.
DO WE KNOW A LIFE OF JUBILEE
Verse 25:13 says to observe the year of Jubilee. Return to your place, your property. God had rescued them and they were free from slavery. Slaves were freed that year. Just as in our own lives, He has delivered us from the domain of darkness and transferred us into the Kingdom of His Beloved Son, in Whom we have redemption and the forgiveness of sins. Colossians 1:12,13. All things belong to God in the year of Jubilee, their land and their lives.