Press On!

As we get close to finishing the second month of reading through the entire Bible, I wanted to encourage you to press on! There are at least a couple of reasons we lose steam in our daily Bible reading.

One, is busyness. Life happens and full schedules or tough situations cause us to lay aside reading our Bibles. Even though we have every intention of getting started again it never seems to happen because life never slows down or lets up. Our goal is to spend time in God’s Word in the midst of busyness and in the midst of life’s challenges. Remember to be consistent until you can’t live without a regular intake of Scripture.

Another reason many people lose steam in reading through their Bibles is the difficult content of the Bible. We started reading with gusto some of the amazing stories in Genesis and Exodus of God’s power and gracious interaction with His people. But now we’ve been reading about the detailed instructions concerning the design of the tabernacle and the furnishings in the tabernacle. We’ve also begun to read about the perplexing rituals that God instituted in Leviticus. These passages seem so ancient and disconnected from our lives today. But remember that God is a purposeful God and all of the Scriptures are important.

Take time to meditate on what you read and ask yourself what you can learn from any given passage. For example, as you read the instructions concerning the tabernacle, consider that God is a God of intricate detail and a God of beauty. I was blessed by Exodus 36:35 when the making of the veil was described. What a beautiful design this must have been! This was the curtain that separated the Holy of Holies from the Holy Place. It must have been an awe-inspiring experience for the priests to enter the Holy Place and see that magnificent curtain knowing that behind it was the ark and the mercy seat, the place where God caused His presence to dwell. Wow!

As you read about the elaborate and intricate rituals in Leviticus consider the purpose of them. I commend this passage to you from the introduction to this book in the ESV Study Bible:
Generally speaking, rituals may function in several ways: To address aspects of the human condition (such as impurity or sinfulness), to serve as a way for the offerer to express emotions or desires to the Lord, and to underscore various truths about the Lord or the human condition. (In many instances, one ritual may accomplish all of these things.) It is helpful to ask which of these general functions is in view in the ritual being considered. One should ask, “What is the specific goal/function of this particular ritual as a whole?”

All of God’s Word has a purpose and is worth you taking the time to read. If there are things that are hard to understand, know that familiar passages will help you make sense of the more obscure passages. In other words you will come to see the breathtaking unity of Scripture.

So, press on! Don’t give up! Keep reading your Bible, trusting the Lord to use it to conform you further into the image of Jesus (John 17:17; Rom. 8:29).

Blessings,
Pastor Wade

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2 Responses to Press On!

  1. Rusty says:

    Brother Wade,

    Thank you for the challenge! Reading the Word of God through has been a problem for me throughout my life. I have now undertaken it once again and really appricate your encouragement through the sermons today. As God’s people respond to the challenges God has lead you to present, to Longview Point, He will bless His church and the area we are in. Again thank you so much.

  2. Marvin Yates says:

    Thanks for your encouragement to hang in there with the seemingly tedious reading in Leviticus. But the beauty we see in this book, with a theme of holiness, not only with God’s amazing detail and beauty exemplified in so many ways, but his deep love for the nation of Isreal, to be set apart for him, as an example of holiness. “You shall be holy to me, for I the Lord am holy and have separated you from the peoples, that you should be mine.” Lev. 20:26. He was showing them the seriousness of sin and how they were to be his example for other nations. Just as we today are to be an example of Christ, and exhibit a pure heart set apart for his glory, God wanted his people to set a standard of righteousness and holiness, so that the rest of the nations might see the one true God and ‘Come and see’ our great and holy God. We know that the rituals and offerings have all been fulfilled in Christ. He replaced the temple, priests and sacrifices so that we now have complete access to him. Today we have a ‘go-tell religion’, about what our great and glorious God has done for us through the finished work of Christ on the cross. I pray that we would seek to see Jesus Christ in this book and all through the OT and see ourselves as totally dependent upon him and the power of the Holy Spirit to be what he wants us to be.

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