Friday, May 20: Leviticus 11- Set apart for God.

Dietary rules… I must admit these do not stimulate me to love God or love neighbor. This is especially true since the NT lifts all dietary food restrictions for Christ-followers (see Mark 7:19, Acts 10:9-15, Romans 14:20).

And while this may be true, Leviticus 11 is still God’s Word and profitable to read and study. (2 Timothy 3:16-17: All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the servant of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.)

So, Lord, what is my useful and profitable nugget for today?

These rules set the people apart. Israel had rules to follow that were different than the peoples of the land into which they were moving. God’s people are ‘set-apart’ people. We are to march to the drumbeat of a different drummer than people who believe and follow other core beliefs or gods. Even though today Christ-followers ‘set apartness’ isn’t distinguished by the food we eat, we should be set apart by the way we love. People still won’t understand, but we like our Israelite OT brothers and sisters, we live to please the Lord, NOT our culture. ‘Set apartness’ is still a characteristic of following the Lord.

Another thought, these rules, particularly the ones involving dead animals, provide a measure of hygienic protection. There is some protection built into these laws. God cares for His people. Just like the 10 Commandments provide protective guardrails for life and community, some of these rules provide guardrails against disease.

So, today I am reminded that God cares for me and desires good for me. And God set me apart to live for Him.

Lord, help me to live a healthy ‘set apart’ life so that my living invites people to find and follow You. I pray in Jesus’ name. Amen


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