Monday, August 22
One of the first phrases that caught my attention today was “ceremonially unclean”. God gave the Israelites examples of what would be ceremonially unclean (in this case touching dead unclean animals or human uncleanness – from Leviticus 5:2-3). These rules obviously weren’t given to spoil all their fun, but to help keep them safe and healthy. Today we are well aware of some of the various illnesses that go ‘hand and hand’ with touching dead animals and not washing properly. His rules are for our benefit.
I wonder what might be included if God were to give his people an updated 2016 version of his “ceremonially unclean” list. Would processed foods or refined sugar make the list? What about pornography and violent video games? Are there habits and choices you are making that need to be changed because they are harmful and spreading illnesses through your body and brain? Would other generations before or after ours be shocked at how we are allowing filth and hazardous materials (as dangerous as unclean carcasses) into our homes, mind and bodies?
The other phrase that stood out for me was “unintentional sin.” I remember Rick McClain speaking at FUEL of the huge danger in “deliberate sin”. Hebrews 10:26 says, “If we deliberately keep on sinning after we have received the knowledge of the truth, NO sacrifice for sins is left”. And, yes, this was written WELL after Jesus died for “all” sins! This deliberate sin sounds like some serious business. But, what about a “sin” that I don’t deliberately commit – that can’t be so bad, right? I became a bit more curious about these “unintentional sins”. Leviticus 5:17 says, “If a person sins and does what is forbidden in any of the Lord’s commands, even though he does not know it, he IS guilty and WILL be held responsible.” So, it appears both deliberate and unintentional sins are SCARY stuff! How can I strive to do a better job of avoiding deliberate and unintentional sins?
I am reminded of verses such as “Watch your life and doctrine closely” (I Tim 4:16). I need to do a better job of studying myself, checking my motives, actions, attitudes, thoughts and speech. I can search myself for unintentional sins that I didn’t even know were there (perhaps jealousy, selfishness or greed) as well as quickly exposing and dealing with deliberate sins. Then I can ask for forgiveness (accepting Christ’s perfect sacrifice without defect) and make the needed corrections. Also, it can be very helpful if I am open to receiving correction and sound advice from wise brothers and sisters in Christ. In this way, the body of Christ acts as a royal priesthood – urging God’s people to live holy lives.
Be set apart this week! Keep Reading Leviticus!