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Are all of the books of the Bible necessary for growth in holiness?
Can the dry reading of Leviticus and Numbers offer anything edifying?
We live in a culture where the New Testament is segregated from the Old. Often sold by itself, we will counsel people to stay away from the Old Testament. 2Timothy 3:16 says: “All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness.” Even the least exciting books have great value!
In fact, this section of the Bible is quoted widely in the New Testament. Leviticus 19:18 (You shall love your neighbor as yourself) alone is quoted five times in the NT (Matthew 22:39, Mark 12:31, Romans 13:9, Galatians 5:14, James 2:8). Numbers 21:9 is the backstory of the most quoted New Testament verse (John 3:14-16). While these examples are not exhaustive by any means (for an exhaustive list, CLICK HERE ), they have one thing in common: Jesus Christ quoted them! If the Son of God believed that these scriptures were inspired and pointed to Himself (Luke 24:27), are we not bound to hold them in high esteem?
So, why do we tend to avoid the left-hand side of our Bibles? The American mindset is consumed with entertainment. Whether it is the 24-hour marathon of the A-Team, or the need to have music on the way to work, the message is clear. We want to be entertained! Sadly, this worldview has crept into the church. There is no other activity where this is more apparent than in how we read our Bibles. Leviticus teaches us that religion can be uncomfortable and even inconvenient, but at the end of the day it is not about us; it is about giving God the glory.
Instead of looking for entertainment in the Bible, let us look for the God that wrote it, so that we might have joy in Him and not ourselves.
In 2 Corinthians 1:9-10, the Apostle Paul writes:
“Indeed, we felt that we had received the sentence of death. But that was to make us rely not on ourselves but on God who raises the dead. He delivered us from such a deadly peril, and he will deliver us. On him we have set our hope that he will deliver us again.”
Paul came upon hard times in Asia, and even ‘despaired of life itself’. In the New Life Directions Program we often see men down on their luck, or in the bondage of sin. They often can testify with Paul that they have the “sentence of death”, but the scripture reminds us of the purpose of hard times: “to make us rely not on ourselves but on God who raises the dead.” We can and do find lasting comfort in trials by putting our hope and trust in the God that raises the dead and saves the souls of those that trust Him.
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Sheltering the homeless since 1934.
510 West Main Cross
The City Mission of Findlay is a proud member of the following organizations:
Association of Gospel Rescue Missions, Evangelical Council for Financial Accountability, Findlay Hancock Chamber of Commerce, and The Better Business Bureau
*The pictures and names of the homeless, unless specifically noted, are not of local homeless people.