Weekly Reading Discussion

 

 

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4 thoughts on “Weekly Reading Discussion

  1. Reading in Deuteronomy 1 today, I was struck by the fact that God was trying to bless the people, He made all the preparations for them to just take that last step and obey in faith, and yet the people refused the blessing. Not only that, they actually complained about God’s choices, slandered Him as one who sought their harm, and actively discouraged one another stepping out in obedient faith.

    I’ve read all this before, but this time, as I read those words, playing through my mind was all the times I had refused God’s attempts to bless me, complained about His choices, questioned His love for me, and actively discouraged others from doing what they believed/knew to be right (e.g., “Sure, you can try reaching out to them, but don’t get your hopes up.”). Of course, I never thought about my actions in those exact terms, but that is what they truly are.

    I am thankful for God’s patience with me and the forgiveness that He has granted me for those sins of the past. But these words are a welcome reminder of how it easy it is to slip back into the selfish, self-centered mindset that drove both the Israelites’ sin, as well as my own.

    • Erin, it is so easy to read about (or view) the sins of others and wonder how they could possibly do such things and never realize that we are guilty of the same. Thank you for reading and for the useful insight.

  2. Weekly Reading: Leviticus chapters 7-23
    Something that has stood out to me is the preparation that had to go in to the daily living, from the servant to the high priest. Jewish law required them to keep themselves from all manner of insects, beasts, etc if they were to remain clean. If a carcass of one of the profane animals/creatures were to touch them or their clothing they were to wash and would remain unclean until the evening. That is just one example of the preparation each day commanded. Thinking through the course of a normal day for me, I’m likely to come into contact with all manner of insects or other creatures by virtue of just being outside the little bit that I am; and to come across a dead one (think of the insects that work their way into our homes from time to time, even with the best of modern insecticides) would be a regular occurrence in our area and this with the modern conveniences that we have going for us. While they would not be in sin, they would be unclean before the Lord because they had touched something defiled, or something defiled had come into contact with them or their things.

    What this emphasized to me was the spiritual application for daily living. In Ephesians 5:1-16 there are many things that are mentioned that we are to abstain from and things we are to do as children of light. Finally in verses 15-17 we are told a conclusion,

    “See then that you walk circumspectly, not as fools but as wise, redeeming the time, because the days are evil. Therefore do not be unwise, but understand what the will of the Lord is.”

    Just as those in the days of the law of Moses were to prepare themselves daily and constantly strive to stay clean by watching out for the things around them (in every way that entailed), we are to also prepare ourselves daily and strive to stay clean under the law of Christ. We are to “walk circumspectly” — that is, keeping our heads on a swivel — in order to keep ourselves from the evil one as well as stay on the narrow way to Heaven.

    What I observe here is that cleanliness before God, remaining pure and holy, is not something that happens passively but rather it’s a conscious choice. Just as He called His people to be separate, set apart, holy unto Him, so are we to be now as Peter exhorts in 1 Peter 1:13-16,

    “Therefore gird up the loins of your mind, be sober, and rest your hope fully upon the grace that is to be brought to you at the revelation of Jesus Christ; as obedient children, not conforming yourselves to the former lusts, as in your ignorance; but as He who called you is holy, you also be holy in all your conduct, because it is written, “Be holy, for I am holy.””

    • Great thoughts Matt. Serving God in an acceptable manner still requires great attention to detail and preparations to keep ourselves clean. May we always appreciate what it means to be holy in the sight of the Lord and strive to live accordingly each and every day.

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