(click on the date above for today's readings)
Ezekiel 45:13-46:24 ~ 1 Peter 1:13-2:10
Psalm 119:33-48 ~ Proverbs 28:11
Old Testament - Ezekiel chapters 45 & 46 throw out some new regulations on how offerings are too be done, when compared to the original Pentateuch regulations - primarily from Numbers chapter 28. Apparently these chapters have created some reconciliation work for rabbis in the past to figure out the proper regs. Verse 20 in chapter 46 did jump out at me in today's readings - "He explained, "This is where the priests will cook the meat from the guilt offerings and sin offerings and bake the flour from the grain offerings into bread. They will do it here to avoid carrying the sacrifices through the outer courtyard and harming the people by transmitting holiness to them." Per a previous chapter this goes along the lines of the priests needing to take off their clothes in a special room after being in the Temple, to avoid transmitting holiness. This is interesting to me because you think that transmitting holiness would be a good thing. Obviously not in this case. This does remind me of when Moses was on the mountain receiving the 10 Commandments, he had to wear a veil over his face amongst the people when he came down from the mountain because his face was so radiant from being in the presence of God. I'll need to do more study on the problem of "transmitting holiness" in this case and report later. If anyone has ideas on why this is the case, please post up in the comments section below. Thanks.
New Testament - Okay, this is one of the beauties of the One Year Bible - something from the OT tying into something we read in the NT on the same day. :) Continuing our holiness theme above, check out verses 15 & 16 in 1 Peter 1 today - "But now you must be holy in everything you do, just as God--who chose you to be his children--is holy. For he himself has said, "You must be holy because I am holy."" Seems like getting some transmitted holiness is now good! :) Well, indeed it is... I don't mean to make light of holiness... I think we are looking at some old covenant / new covenant differences here. In the OT times, only the priests could get anywhere near God - near holiness. Whereas, now thanks to the Cross of Christ, all who believe in Jesus can approach God and holiness. Christ finished the OT sacrifices and rituals, and was the final sacrifice. The veil of holiness has been lifted. We can now approach God and holiness, through Christ. Do you believe that God is holy? Do you believe we are called to be holy? Is this a goal in your life – to be holy? What are some ways you can move forward on this goal of being holy?
1 Peter 2 verse 2 is awesome - "You must crave pure spiritual milk so that you can grow into the fullness of your salvation. Cry out for this nourishment as a baby cries for milk, now that you have had a taste of the Lord's kindness." Do you crave pure spiritual milk? What is pure spiritual milk? Could it be the Word of God, the Bible? Do you believe the Bible can help you grow into the fullness of your salvation? Do you cry out for this nourishment?
Verse 5 is beautiful as well - "And now God is building you, as living stones, into his spiritual temple. What's more, you are God's holy priests, who offer the spiritual sacrifices that please him because of Jesus Christ." Do you believe that you are a living stone in God's spiritual temple? Do you believe you are a holy priest of God?
Psalms - Today in Psalm 119 verse 37 we read: “Turn my eyes away from worthless things; preserve my life according to your word.” Are there currently things in your life that you are spending time on – focusing your eyes on – that are worthless? Do you want to turn your eyes away from these things? Will you? Do you believe that your life can be preserved by the Word of God – the Bible? How will you continue to preserve your life according to God’s Word in 2005?
Proverbs - Proverb 28:11 is a great reminder for us to not think of ourselves as being too wise in our own eyes... others will see through our "wisdom".
What verses or insights jumped out for you in today's readings? Please post up in the Comments section below!