Good Morning Siblings!
Today’s readings are Leviticus 14-15
When I was learning how to drive, my parents had me drive them to a store in Huntsville one day. I sat behind the wheel, both hands in correct positions as alert as possible and hoping I did everything right. At one point, my dad directed me to turn left at the light. I navigated to the turn lane, pulled in behind several cars, waited for the light to turn, and then went with the flow of traffic. After I made it through the intersection he said “You just drove through the busiest intersection in Huntsville. Now you can drive anywhere you want.”
In that same spirit I want to say Congratulations! You survived yesterday’s readings. Many Believers make it a point not to even read those and you read them, faced them head on, processed the information the Father gave us, and had some wonderful conversations on the comment thread (on the years these readings don’t fall on a weekend)! Today’s readings are much easier to take. In fact, I doubt we’ll encounter any readings as difficult for a modern Believer to process as those we read yesterday until we get to the readings we were told ahead of time are easily twisted to suit our own purpose. 2 Peter 3:16. Yup, I’m talking about Paul. (Addendum for clarification: Peter is stating that Paul is difficult to understand and that his writing is such that it is easily twisted by those who seek to do so, to suit their own purposes. Peter is not saying Paul twisted the Word but that others twist Paul’s words)
A Big part of today’s reading relates to what I explained yesterday about living water. If you missed that, make sure you read the second half of my notes from yesterday.
Today I want to start by sharing something that one of our group members wrote. Wayne Scott wrote this a few days ago and I think its very timely encouragement for us.
“Good morning, Porch Family. I’ve been thinking about this study of Scripture. People have spent lifetimes reading, studying, and learning it. We live in an age of 24/7 access to information. People can now binge-watch entire series of entertainment programming and long-gone are the days of waiting 4-6 weeks for delivery of items ordered from a post card in the back of a magazine (yes, I am giving away my age here). It can be frustrating for us to not instantly know everything when we read Scripture. This happens to me. It happened to me yesterday. I had to remind myself that with each reading, each day, scales are slowly lifted and hearts are slowly changed. I imagine that if there was one single YouTube video that could explain it all in 10 minutes, our Father would miss the opportunity to tabernacle with us each day. My earthly father spent a lifetime teaching me lessons, right up until the moment of his last breathe. He was patient with me, just as our Father is patient with us.”
Amen Wayne! Now let’s dive in.
Today we are seeing more clarification on what is clean vs what is unclean. There are a few important things we need to notice in our reading:
- The priest never attempted to cure Tzara’at. Remember, this is not a regular illness, it is a spiritual affliction, a judgement from YHWH. Leviticus 14:34 makes this clear. YHWH says when I place an affliction on your house in the land.
- It is also important to remember that the prescribed behavior if tzara’at is suspected is to report it to a priest. We will revisit this in a few months.
- In many cases of being unclean, a person is simply unclean until sunset. This is usually not a permanent condition. However, there are permanent cases of being unclean.
- In our time, we don’t see tzara’at right now. One thought as to why is that since we are without a priesthood and a temple, we have no one who has the authority to declare tzara’at now, nor do we have any means of performing the cleansing and atoning rituals.
- Unclean does not necessarily mean sinful, although sometimes it can. Sometimes just the everyday motions of living in this world cause us to be unclean. While both of these principles are being discussed today, it is important that we don’t blend the two in our minds.
- However, Biblically speaking, just about all Gentiles were unclean at this point in our reading. Why is that? The knowledge of what caused one to be unclean and the knowledge of how to remedy that condition were given to Israel, and the Gentiles were ignorant of this knowledge. Sin can bring about uncleanness and we know that all have sinned and fall short of the glory of YHWH. But at this time only Israel had a way of remedying that. So yeah, with some exceptions, all Gentiles were unclean.
However, Messiah changed all of that for us. He is the bridge that connects us to the Father, allows us to be grafted in as part of YHWH’s chosen people, and stand before the Father clean, forgiven, debt free (the debt owed for our own sin), and Holy.
Do all of the ways that one can become unclean seem strange and varied? Do you disagree with some of the choices of animals that landed on the unclean list? Do you have questions about why this would make a person unclean and that wouldn’t? This is an example of us needing to learn to lean on His wisdom above our own. While we can certainly ponder, discuss, and even speculate some of the downfalls of the causes of being made unclean or why the Father would declare one animal food and one “not food”, at the end of the day we are also being taught to look to Him for our reason rather than ourselves. To look to Him for guidance, rather than our own emotions. To look to Him for wisdom rather than our own intellect.
There is a moment in the movie Aladdin where Aladdin is on a flying carpet outside, in mid air, and Jasmine is on the balcony looking at him in shock. He holds out his hand for her to join him, looks into her eyes and says “Do ya trust me?” That is what the Father is doing with us now. And every other moment of our lives.
Do ya trust me?
I was talking to a friend, Shawn Parris, yesterday and he said there are two questions most believers ask when we read Leviticus, and depending on which one we ask, it can show the state of our heart.
The two questions are either:
- Does YHWH permit me to do this? OR
- Is YHWH happy when I do this?
Which question we ask can tell us if we are really seeking a relationship with YHWH or not. This really hit home with me and I had to spend some time thinking about it. Most of my life, I asked the first question. That’s difficult to even think about now.
My notes are short today because I’m not going into the topic matter of chapter fifteen on an Internet forum, and I’m a little rundown right now. I look forward to your discussion in the comments of our group and I want to thank you, sincerely, for the spiritual maturity and kindness everyone showed yesterday in discussing a sensitive topic among the body today. YHWH’s word is our authority and we know every knee shall confess this, but what a double blessing to be able to live our lives doing so now!
Test everything, hold tight to what is good.~ 1 Thess 5:21
We are saved by Grace alone: Obedience is not the root of our salvation, it is the fruit!