Apr 17, 2022

(Leviticus 21, Psalm 26-27; Optional Romans 9:1-13, Proverbs 19:15-19)

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LEVITICUS 21 – Though ALL the people of God were called to be holy, distinct from the world and set apart for God, the priests were held to higher standards, and the high priest to even higher (Lev 21:10-15). Leaders in the church today are called to higher standards, also (see James 3:1, 1 Tim 3:1-7, Titus 1:5-9).

Lev 21:5 – Seems to be related to pagan practices – there was not to be even a HINT of this in worship of the one true God.

Lev 21:7 – Might this help us interpret the higher standards for marriage of elders in 1 Tim 3:2 and Titus 1:6?

Lev 21:16-21 – This does not undo the truth of Exodus 4:11. But it DOES mean that God had a DIFFERENT plan than serving as priest for those described in Lev 21:16-21. This chapter (and the next chapter about the SACRIFICES also needing to be without blemish) ready us for Jesus – the unblemished priest AND sacrifice. He’s the fulfillment of ALL the pointers in the Old Testament!

PSALM 26-27  – Psalm 26 – Four prayer requests (v 1, 2, 9, 11) and evidence of a well-examined life that really is built around trusting Yahweh. NOT sinless perfection, though… The confident David here in Ps 26 puts is the same David who is VERY aware of his sin in Ps 25:6-8, 11, 16-18. But in Ps 25 he prayed that God would teach him (Ps 25:4-5) and cause him to walk in integrity (Ps 25:21). Well, in Ps 26 we see that God answered those prayers (see Ps 26:1, 11 about integrity)! And this is what a well-taught life looks like – confidence in God, hating evil (Ps 26:5) and loving good and being with God’s people (Ps 26:8).

Psalm 27:1-6 – I love the strong God-confidence here! In the midst of painful and scary times when evil SEEMS to be winning for a while, we must remember that the END of the story for ALL believers is full and complete deliverance one day, and full and eternal joy and victory (compare Ps 27:4-6 with the end of the whole Bible – Rev 21 & 22)!

Psalm 27:7-14 – In his hard time (see all the talk of enemies in Ps 27:2, 6, 11-12), David wants to stay focused on God and worshipping HIM in all His beauty (Ps 27:4, 6, 7, 11, 14). When in a rough time it’s easy to focus on SURVIVING. May we stay focused on WORSHIPPING our great God. Wait for His timing and eventual deliverance (maybe seen only in heaven) and worship Him!

Optional Rom 9:1-13 – Rom 9 is one of the chapters that I distinctly remember from my first through-the-Bible reading many years ago. I had already been amazed at how radically God-centered the whole Bible is, and Rom 9 just put several things together for me about God is ABSOLUTELY sovereign and in wise and good control of everything. AND humans are held responsible for our real decisions / choices / actions. Rom 9-11 are a clear section, and note the overflowing WORSHIP and amazement at God and His glory that bursts out at the close of this section (Rom 11:33-36)!

And don’t miss the tears and heartbreak over the lost in Rom 9:2-3! If you’re CLAIMING to be focused on the sovereignty of God (that’s a great thing), but you’re becoming emotionally cold / apathetic about lost people, something is very wrong!

Jesus gave similar worship to Rom 11:33-36 in Matt 11:20-27 (see Matt 11:25-27 for the worship part, but don’t miss the shocking context of the sovereignty of God in salvation in Matt 11:20-24). And then closed with one of the sweetest invitations in the Bible in Matt 11:28-30. And we are to use this same invitation to plead with the lost to come to Jesus!

Optional Proverbs 19:15-19 – I’ve heard folks say, “I love my child too much to discipline them firmly.” No! Prov 19:18 says the opposite.