Summary: We dear ones are called to Holiness not just good enough to get by. That’s a pretty high standard for any of us and God knows that so He gave us some help and identified behaviours and actions that we need to purge from our character.
The Do Nots of Christian living
Leviticus Chapters 15 through 18
Many people see religion as a waste of time. I would be one to agree with them. However FAITH is another matter. Religion is made by man but FAITH is what God is calling us to.
People compartmentalize the Christian faith as being a long list of “Do’s and Don’ts. That is an over simplification but by and large they see a life of faith as being a strict set of rules that need to be followed.
They are not entirely wrong but which rules you follow and how you apply those rules have a dramatic effect on how a life of faith is lived out. By extension it also determines how a society functions and or a church as well.
Application is the important issue, context yes but application of what you believe speaks louder than a list of the things you believe.
Everything changed the day we fell from our obedient original character and took on a wilful disobedience. Sin entered into our souls and we were separated from God because of it.
No more Garden of Eden.
Ever since then – yes – we’ve needed rules. As a society we’ve needed rules and we’ve realized that over time. We have experimented with every kind of government you could imagine in an effort to keep the peace and establish order.
Africa is a great example where dominate nations from other continents tried to impose their laws and social order on a free people. I read a great book on this subject that you might enjoy called... "The State of Africa" by Martin Meredith published by Jonathan Ball Publishers, Johannesburg & Cape Town 2005, 2006.
In it you discover that regardless of what kind of human government was tried or imposed in Africa's various countries there were only limited successes throughout history. Oddly enough Monarchy's and Benevolent Tribal Dictators seemed to have had the best success compared to European, Eastern or Western types of governments.
I'm just saying having one Sovereign Leader is what we are called to.
Just to get to church today you had to follow rules. Hopefully you stopped at the red lights and the stop signs. Hopefully you obeyed the speed limit and wore your seatbelt. You can see that we can’t get far in this world without confronting rules, rules that we have made.
Some to keep us safe and some to keep others safe.
God put down His own set of rules for similar reasons. Our Father in Heaven wants to keep us safe as well as other people. But the purpose of God’s rules are higher than just public safety and order. God’s rules are to teach us how we should live and how the rules can expose us to a higher standard of living. Holy living.
God calls our attention to His rules so we will know the standard that He has set for us. We are to be like Him and reflect His character and attitude in life despite living in such a sin filled world.
God’s rules help point out the way to godly living in an ungodly world.
God gave these rules to the nation of Israel first and then God’s Son expounded them so we might better understand the intent and purpose of the rules.
You could call Leviticus Chapter 12 the Do Not Chapter of the Bible. For in it we get a very specific set of rules that are for a very specific purpose – to refine us.
God said it all to Moses in the first two verses; Lev 12:1-2
19 The LORD said to Moses, 2 “Speak to the entire assembly of Israel and say to them: ‘Be holy because I, the LORD your God, am holy.
We dear ones are called to Holiness not just good enough to get by. That’s a pretty high standard for any of us and God knows that so He gave us some help and identified behaviours and actions that we need to purge from our character.
God lists them in order of priority.
Be Holy like God – Call to righteousness – return to a right relationship with God
Respect and obey your Mother and Father – with a promise of a long life for doing so
Observe God’s Sabbaths – Be at church for the right reasons to worship God not to socialize, it's not about you
Do not desecrate your sacrifices to God – Don’t be cheap with God give God your best, at home, work & church
When you harvest leave a little for others – Compassion and thanks for having an abundance
Read Lev 12:11-18
“‘Do not steal.
“‘Do not lie.
“‘Do not deceive one another.