The Reason Behind Rules
God made rules we need to follow. But our nature is to break rules, right? And He has entrusted us with His truth and many belongings on this earth. How we use what God has given matters. How we live out our faith matters. The consequences for disobedience are grave while the blessings for obedience are grace. But when we understand reason behind rules that God has given and when we know the heart of God, we know he made the rules for our good.
Bible Reading of the Day: Leviticus 25-28
“But during the seventh year the land must have a Sabbath year of complete rest. It is the LORD’s Sabbath. Do not plant your fields or prune your vineyards during that year.”
- God is calling His people to a Sabbath – for their land.
- In researching about the Jubilee and
How we use what God has given matters.
Today we don’t have this year of Jubilee but there are principles we can apply to our lives. Acknowledging that all we have was given to us by God. Stewarding it well and being generous with others is how we honor God with what we have.
Scripture of the Day: Leviticus 25:17
“Show your fear of God by not taking advantage of each other. I am the LORD your God.”
The ESV says do not wrong one another. The CSB says do not cheat one another.
The key principles in this passage are to:
- Treat one another rightly.
- To keep God’s statutes and ordinances so we may be secure:
“You are to keep my statutes and ordinances and carefully observe them, so that you may live securely in the land.
- To Recognize that we are servants of God.
Leviticus 25:55 “For the Israelites are my servants. They are my servants that I brought out of the land of Egypt; I am the Lord your God.”
The Reason Behind Rules—Sin Destroys Us and God Loves Us
Friends, we were bought by God. Don’t make idols and worship false gods.
Leviticus 26:1-2, “Do not make worthless idols for yourselves, set up a carved image or sacred pillar for yourselves, or place a sculpted stone in your land to bow down to it, for I am the Lord your God. 2 Keep my Sabbaths and revere my sanctuary; I am the Lord.”
If we will obey God, He has promises in store for us. And obedience is something our flesh does not like to do.
But in telling us to obey God is not just lording it over us, though He is lord of lords and King of Kings. Getting our own way leads to our destruction. Sin destroys us. God loves us and does not want us to suffer.
11 “I will place my residence among you, and I will not reject you. 12 I will walk among you and be your God, and you will be my people. 13 I am the Lord your God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt, so that you would no longer be their slaves. I broke the bars of your yoke and enabled you to live in freedom.”
The Reason Behind Rules—Consequences of Disobedience or Blessings for Obedience
The consequences for disobedience are grave while the blessings for obedience are grace. God is a jealous God. He loves us so very much. We choose life and obeying a good God who loves us. Or we choose to make ourselves our own gods and to suffer severe penalties for it.
14 “But if you do not obey me and observe all these commands— 15 if you reject my statutes and despise my ordinances, and do not observe all my commands—and break my covenant, 16 then I will do this to you: I will bring terror on you—wasting disease and fever that will cause your eyes to fail and your life to ebb away. You will sow your seed in vain because your enemies will eat it. 17 I will turn[c] against you, so that you will be defeated by your enemies. Those who hate you will rule over you, and you will flee even though no one is pursuing you.
18 “But if after these things you will not obey me, I will proceed to discipline you seven times for your sins. 19 I will break down your strong pride. I will make your sky like iron and your land like bronze, 20 and your strength will be used up for nothing. Your land will not yield its produce, and the trees of the land will not bear their fruit.”
You can keep reading in chapter 26, because when God’s people’s hearts are hardened and they continue to sin, the consequences continue to get even worse. God would not be loving to not have consequences. A loving God would not leave disobedience unpunished. Sin is deceitful. God was telling his people to observe a Sabbath for the land every 7th year and then to mark off a year of Jubilee.
Got Questions.org Commentary
“The word “jubilee”—literally, “ram’s horn” in Hebrew—is defined in Leviticus 25:9 as the sabbatical year after seven cycles of seven years (49 years). The fiftieth year was to be a time of celebration and rejoicing for the Israelites. The ram’s horn was blown on the tenth day of the seventh month to start the fiftieth year of universal redemption.
The Year of the Jubilee involved a year of release from indebtedness (Leviticus 25:23-38) and all types of bondage (vv. 39-55). All prisoners and captives were set free, all slaves were released, all debts were forgiven, and all property was returned to its original owners. In addition, all labor was to cease for one year, and those bound by labor contracts were released from them. One of the benefits of the Jubilee was that both the land and the people were able to rest.
The Jubilee presents a beautiful picture of the New Testament themes of redemption and forgiveness. Christ is the Redeemer who came to set free those who are slaves and prisoners to sin (Romans 8:2; Galatians 5:1; 3:22). The debt of sin we owe to God was paid on the cross as Jesus died on our behalf (Colossians 2:13-14), and we are forgiven the debt forever. We are no longer in bondage, no longer slaves to sin, having been freed by Christ, and we can truly enter the rest God provides as we cease laboring to make ourselves acceptable to God by our own works (Hebrews 4:9-10).”
Easy English Bible Commentary
“These rules about Sabbath Years and Jubilee Years help us to understand the real meaning of the Sabbath. The Sabbath is not only about a pause from our usual work. It is about the special time when we worship God. And especially, it is about the rest and the freedom that God gives to his people (Hebrews 4:9-11).”
Behind all of the rules is a loving God Who is guiding His people. When our hearts are hard, we rebel against rules. But when we understand the heart of God, we know he made the rules for our good. When we understand that all we have belongs to God, we will be about making sure His Kingdom work is done. And when we repent and turn back to God, He restores us.
40 “But when they confess their iniquity and the iniquity of their ancestors—their unfaithfulness that they practiced against me, and how they acted with hostility toward me, 41 and I acted with hostility toward them and brought them into the land of their enemies—and when their uncircumcised hearts are humbled and they make amends for their iniquity, 42 then I will remember my covenant with Jacob. I will also remember my covenant with Isaac and my covenant with Abraham, and I will remember the land.”
- How we use what God has given matters.
- The consequences for disobedience are grave while the blessings for obedience are grace.
- But when we understand the heart of God, we know he made the rules for our good.
- Behind all of the rules is a loving God Who is guiding His people.
- All we own belongs to God. We just get to steward it for His glory.
7-Fold One-Year Bible Reading Plan
Day 204: Leviticus 25-28
Scripture of the Day: Leviticus 25:17
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