“I am the Lord, your God.” Leviticus
I have just finished devotionally reading through the book of Leviticus. This is a rather difficult book of the Bible to read and understand how God wants us to apply His Word today. It is filled with images of animal sacrifice, rules, vows, “thou shalt nots” that typically followers of Christ steer away from it, while non-believers point to it as examples of the Bible’s irrelevance. But deep within this book, is an important message. The reason that the above verse above has no direct reference is because it is repeated 26 times in the 27 chapters of Leviticus.
It’s almost like God is having to constantly remind his people of two things:
1) That he is the Lord—not me, not you, not our money, the Stock Market, our iPhone, our family, our girlfriend. He is the one who is directing our life. As we are reminded through Jesus’ teachings, our objective is to “obey.”
2) That he is “Our God”—while it may make Him seem cold, and dictatorial: it is this second phrase that is the most crucial. God is for us. He has got our back; we are not out here alone. He wants what is best for us. We get to call him not “a” or “some” or “their” or “the” God…but my God. The invitation is for a personal connection with God.
That is what the Christmas story reminds us, that He is our God because He would go so far as to put on human flesh and die for us. He is a God who wants what is best for us. So all those seemingly weird and oppressive rules in Leviticus, at their core they remind us that we have a God who loves us and wants us to follow Him.
What would “obedience” to God look like? How would your day be different if you “obeyed” God? Why is it difficult to believe that He knows what’s better for us than we know for ourselves? What is holding you back from calling him your God?
For Christ in the Heart of Charlotte
Associate Minister for Evangelism and Administration