The Reason for Restrictions

Wendy Pope

Day: 19 | Plan: Leviticus-Hebrews

Today's Reading: Leviticus 14

Leviticus 14:1-2 (NIV) “The LORD said to Moses, ‘These are the regulations for any diseased person at the time of their ceremonial cleansing, when they are brought to the priest.’”

Leviticus 14 is full of instructions concerning purification and ceremonial cleanliness. In the last chapter, we learned about the diagnosing of skin rashes and handling of infectious mildew. The ceremonially unclean were to avoid contact with people and were prohibited from normal activity.

People seem to fall into two categories when it comes to following rules: they either love rules or they don’t. Personally, I relish rules. They make me happy and give me room to thrive. Rules offer safe boundaries. And this was God’s intention when He instructed the Israelites. His plan is to reconcile us to Him and each other. We might not always like the process or even understand it but we can trust God and His ways. 

God sets rules and guidelines in place not to restrict, but to protect. Just as He knows what He is doing now, He knew what He was doing then. Rashes are contagious. Mildew spreads. Diseases pass from the sick to the healthy. Not much has changed since the Old Testament times, huh? God’s physical quarantines safeguarded the Israelites then, much like His spiritual confines shield us now.  

When the Spirit nudges us not to watch a certain television show that everyone at the office talks about each week, His purpose is protection. There may be frightening scenes that would give us nightmares, or adult scenes that would tempt us to lust or crude scenes that would lower our guard against using vulgar words. Or the reason for not watching that show may remain a mystery. 

Sometimes God’s rules make perfect sense. Other times, we won’t understand them and may never know the “why” behind His guidance. In either case, we can trust that His ways are higher than our ways and His thoughts are higher than our thoughts. (Isaiah 55:9)

Prayer: Heavenly Father, help me to embrace the restrictions Your love places on my life. They aren’t always easy but I know You are for me not against me and everything You ask of me is for my good. In Jesus’ name, amen.

More Moments:

We can liken the mildew in the house to our sin. Mildew isn’t usually seen until after it... Read More

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