When you reap the harvest of your land, do not reap to the very edges of your field or gather the gleanings of your harvest. Do not go over your vineyard a second time or pick up the grapes that have fallen. Leave them for the poor and the foreigner. I am the LORD your God.
Leviticus 19:9-10 (NIV)
Read: Leviticus 19:1-10
Consider: When you read the ten commandments (as recorded in Exodus 20:1-17), or the Laws set out in Deuteronomy and Leviticus, do you read them as a series of things that are set down by God to cramp your style or to restrict your freedom? Perhaps you are even tempted to see God as a cosmic spoilsport.
In today’s reading in Leviticus 19 we are told: The LORD said to Moses, ‘Speak to the entire assembly of Israel and say to them, Be holy because I, the LORD your God, am holy’ (Leviticus 19:1). Like the Israelites, we are encouraged to show through our actions that we want to live a holy and god-like life. God’s commandments in Exodus 20 give us a very clear picture of how we should act towards God and others in society.
When considering the commandments and laws it is possible to concentrate upon either the negatives (Do not), or the positives (Do). What God wants from us is not that we slavishly and reluctantly abide by the ‘Do not’, but that we willingly and positively let our love for him be seen in what we ‘Do’.
Spend a few minutes reading over Leviticus 19, but instead of concentrating on what you are not to do, ask God to reveal to you how you are to live. Hopefully thinking this way will give you a new perspective on God’s commands and laws.
Pray: Father, show us that abiding by your commands and laws should not be seen as onerous, but as an expression of our love for you. May our desire be to be holy. Amen