A devotional thought from Christian George for “Sacrifice and Salvation (Part 1)”
Each of us governs his or her life by codes. From housing codes and security codes to food regulations and tax laws, we all live by a series of codes that determine everything from where we live to what we eat to how we drive to work. Whether we like it or not, codes are in place for our protection. They give us the security and boundaries we need to survive as individuals and as a nation.
In the Book of Leviticus, God provided His newly minted nation with a series of codes and regulations. These Levitical codes were not meant to frustrate the Israelites or keep them from having fun. Instead, they were given to keep God’s people holy—to set them apart from the other nations. God wanted His people to be different, to be unique, to be up to His code.
There are many codes that others live by: the code of Bushido, the Koran, the Book of Mormon, and so on. But here’s the question: What’s your code? The code of Christianity is the true code—the Holy Scriptures—by which the one true God has disclosed Himself to humanity. In the 66 books of the Bible, God has provided guidelines on how He wants us to live—not by a strict series of laws like the Israelites, but instead with a heart that walks with God. As Augustine said, “Love God and do whatever you want.” For when we love God, we will automatically do what His heart wishes.
In the code of the canon, we have the story of God’s interaction with the world from the beginning of time to its conclusion. In it, we find everything we need for life and godliness (2 Pet. 1:3). As John records, “These have been written so that you may believe that Jesus is the Messiah, the Son of God, and that by believing you may have life in His name” (John 20:31, HCSB). This code has been preserved throughout the centuries for you. What an advantage! What a responsibility!
Pause and Reflect:
• How does sin affect our need for laws and boundaries? What if there were none in the world?
• Has humanity ever lived without codes and regulations? What about in the garden of Eden?
• Why is our holiness more desirable to God than our “happiness”? How can true happiness only derive from holiness?