Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Leviticus 5-8: If you ________, then you are guilty. And if you ________, you are responsible.

From Garden to City reading:  Leviticus 5-8

So basically, if you don't say something when you should, God will hold you responsible.  Like someone is being convicted of a crime, and you know they didn't do it, but you don't speak up.

And if you tough something unclean, even if you don't know it, you're guilty and need to make yourself clean again.  And if you promise to do something, but don't do it, you're guilty.  And if you do something against the law, but you don't know it, you're guilty. And if you cheat someone, you're guilty and you have to pay it back, plus some.

This is a long list.  And this is only a partial list.  There are more laws elsewhere.

Honestly, a lot of this is common sense.  Somewhere, deep in my heart and my imagination, I know this stuff.  I didn't need to read it in a book.  And remember, most of these people couldn't read.  So they learned this stuff by listening.  First to Moses, and then to the people who came afterward, who learned to recite the law.

Some of this stuff isn't common sense.  Like when Moses says that entire communities can sin and must repent together.  And when leaders sin, they owe a greater sacrifice than when ordinary people like me si.

Elsewhere we see that entire communities are punished for their sin.   And entire communities punished for the sins of their leaders.

This is serious stuff.  And it's a lot to keep track of us.

Unless you can simplify it.
Jesus tells us that all the laws of the prophets come down to this:
Love God, and love other people.

Even that gets complicated, and we get busy with our lives and forgot to love God.  And loving other people?  Sometimes they aren't that easy to love.

Jeremiah promises a day when will come when God will put his law into our minds and write it on our hearts.  We won't need books and teachers to define sin for us.  We'll know.
We won't need reminders to love.  We'll love.

Until then, we keep our eyes on Jesus, and we keep our ears turned toward the Holy Spirit.

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