Friday, April 15, 2011

Leviticus: Chapter 14

It is the glory of God to conceal a thing: but the honor of kings is to search out a matter.  (Proverbs 25:2)

We have a great honor today!  This chapter has some incredible treasures tucked away in this celebration of cleansing.  Did you notice that the priest went outside of the camp to meet the leper?  Jesus meets us where we fact, He left the glories of heaven to come to our sin-soaked world.  In the cleansing celebration there is some beautiful symbolism outlined by J. Vernon McGee:

  • Two birds:  one represents the death of Christ; the other Resurrection Life!
  • A clay vessel:  the incarnation of Christ
  • Running water:  living water; the Word of God and the Spirit of God
  • Hyssop: faith of the individual
  • Cedar Wood:  the incorruptibility of Christ
When the cleansed leper re-enters the community, there are reminders that the old life is behind and new life must be embraced.  At salvation, it is deadly for us to return to old ways, old friends and habits.  We must change our externals to reflect the new life we have been given.  Finally, the cleansed leper was to join the community in bringing sacrifices to the temple.  As we explored in earlier chapters, each offering has a reminder of who Christ is and who we are.  Our cleansing is not about us and we are to lift up Christ in our hearts and minds--and in front of others!

The house passage spoke deeply to my heart; I believe that our 'house' -- our 'heritage' is a precious trust.  First I was struck by the fact that God Himself takes responsibility for 'putting the plague within a house.'  I do not believe God gives us 'sin' but I believe He orchestrates when it appears to us--that He might cleanse and bless us (and our heritage!).   It brings to my mind the verse that instructs us to bless those who curse us for we have been called to the situation to bless.  We each have inherited--and may well pass on--sins which contaminate others;  having those sins exposed to our great High Priest brings eternal blessing.  Perhaps God entrusts us with the appearance of household sin that we might bring it to Him and break a generational legacy!  May we each rejoice in Jesus and bring Him the sacrifice of praise today!

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