#DailyDevotion How Will You Escape Death For Your Sins?
5th Sunday of Easter
Read Lev 20:1–16, 22–27
Lev 20:7-9 Consecrate yourselves, therefore, and be holy, for I am the LORD your God. (8) Keep my statutes and do them; I am the LORD who sanctifies you. (9) For anyone who curses his father or his mother shall surely be put to death; he has cursed his father or his mother; his blood is upon him…24 But I have said to you, ‘You shall inherit their land, and I will give it to you to possess, a land flowing with milk and honey.’ I am the LORD your God, who has separated you from the peoples.
Now if you have read this chapter, you will see that there are a lot of sins which if the people of Israel commit, they would be put to death, worshipping Molech, sassing parent, adultery, various other sexual sins and the like. But the Lord precedes these with these words, “Consecrate yourselves, therefore, and be holy, for I am the Lord your God.” The Israelites were to be a holy nation. A nation separate from the other nations of the world. They were not saved from the Egyptians by the Lord to be like other people. They were called to be a light to the world. But to become darkness, to sin with the rest of the world, was to annul God’s covenant and to lose one’s purpose with God.
The wages of sin is death. We normally think about our being mortal, that indeed one day our bodies will experience death because of our sinfulness. Yet the Lord here in the covenant with Moses shows how serious our sins are by hastening deaths to those who commissioning these sins. Sin is not something the Lord God just excuses or sloughs off. It is serious. Deadly serious.
Now we Christians are not part of the Mosaic Covenant. These decrees of death for these various sins do not apply to us to carry out in the land we live in. Indeed, even the Israelites only has jurisdiction over the people in the land they were promised. But we have not yet reached that land promised to us. To escape the penalties of temporal death for our sins and more importantly, to escape the eternal punishment for our sins, the Lord, the God of Israel became man, a specific man, Jesus of Nazareth.
The Lord Jesus does not want to kill people for their sins nor does he desire their eternal death in the lake of fire, prepared to punish the angels who rebelled against him. No, Jesus, the Lord, wants to save you and give you eternal life. To this purpose, Jesus gave us his own life for you on the cross. There on the altar of the cross, in his sacrifice, he experience what those who reject him and his ways experience at death. Yet death could not hold Jesus and he rose on the third day. Now he promises his life is your life. He has become a covenant for you. He has a promised land for you where righteousness reigns and there is no more evil. This he will give to you if you believe he has done this for you.
Heavenly Father, you have called us to be your holy people in Jesus the Messiah. Grant us your grace to live holy lives among the people of the world and give us your word of life that we may give it to others and rescue them from eternal death for Christ’s sake. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.