Just 2 sermons into Leviticus and there are patterns of thought that are developing for me related to grace. We’ve tasted in these 2 weeks that God’s holiness remains intact always and, therefore, demands precision and detail in dealing with sin and dwelling among His people. We’ve seen that God’s righteous demands on His people (righteous because He’s holy and “right” to do so) is heavy and specific. We’ve also seen that God has graciously made provision for offerings so that as the people fail at meeting God’s demands they can still have their sin atoned for (paid for) by a sacrificial substitute so that He can be in their midst.
Inevitably, we’re left to see how every bit of God’s holiness, righteous requirements, and atoning provision is fulfilled in the person of Christ. That’s good and right to do. But I believe we need to be cautious in our understanding of this. It would be very easy to cheapen the grace of God in the Christian’s life simply because we do not have these weighty details, instructions and processes that we have to go through in order to obtain God’s favor. I’m not at all saying let’s go back to a system that has been fulfilled in Christ, not even mentally. What I am saying is that we must make sure that our understanding of all that Christ is for us needs to be increasingly informed by our study in Leviticus. If our study does not produce a deeper understanding and gratitude for God’s grace, as well as increased righteous living, then our study is worthless.
Paul said in 1 Cor. 2:2, “For I decided to know nothing among you except Jesus Christ and him crucified.” We should realize that there is a Leviticus-type weight behind this statement, especially coming from a self-proclaimed “Jew of Jews” like Paul. May this be our claim and aim. Christ…crucified. Every offering…every requirement…every judgment…every joy — in Christ for those who believe.