Historically, laws weren’t unusual during the Israelites’ time. Yet God sets the Israelites apart from other nations. There’s uniqueness to their God compared to the other gods. This uniqueness involved a covenant, and it was counter-cultural. The covenant was not intended to appease God or to have his own needs met, but to invite the Israelites into a new way.
Holiness. It’s a tall order. It can seem harsh and impossible at times. We don’t always respond well to authority, or to being told what we should and shouldn’t do. Yet, in contrast, some of the alternatives are called out with unequivocal description by a holy God: it defiles his sanctuary, profanes his holy name, is a disgrace, dishonours another.
He doesn’t adhere to our standards but calls us to a higher one, a better one. One marked by covenant fidelity. This is who we really are as children redeemed by a holy God. We are called to freedom under God, in obedience to him and his truth.
There’s an extraordinary value that he places on us. So it matters how we live and what we believe about what he’s said. It matters that we treat others with fairness, honesty, justice, respect and consideration. We must live in a way that’s fitting of our status.
For here is our Penalty Placater, our Rebellion Redeemer, the only One who can save. Jesus, the fulfillment of the law and all of its demands, has come. He is our great High Priest making intercession and atonement for us before God. He alone is doing the impossible, equipping us to accomplish what is impossible by our own strength and understanding. Enabled by his power and grace, we humbly align ourselves to him.
Our Standard, our prize, our source of life. “I am the Lord, who makes you holy” (Lev 20:8).
May we say “yes” to him, to true freedom. Counter-cultural, indeed, yet we will never regret it each time that we do so that it may go well with us.
For “you are to be holy to me because I, the Lord, am holy, and I have set you apart from the nations to be my own” (Lev 20:26).
womenconnect Volunteer, Women’s Ministries Leadership Team, Greeter