Leviticus 26:3-20 (ESV)
3 “If you walk in my statutes and observe my commandments and do them, 4 then I will give you your rains in their season, and the land shall yield its increase, and the trees of the field shall yield their fruit. 5 Your threshing shall last to the time of the grape harvest, and the grape harvest shall last to the time for sowing. And you shall eat your bread to the full and dwell in your land securely. 6 I will give peace in the land, and you shall lie down, and none shall make you afraid. And I will remove harmful beasts from the land, and the sword shall not go through your land. 7 You shall chase your enemies, and they shall fall before you by the sword. 8 Five of you shall chase a hundred, and a hundred of you shall chase ten thousand, and your enemies shall fall before you by the sword. 9 I will turn to you and make you fruitful and multiply you and will confirm my covenant with you. 10 You shall eat old store long kept, and you shall clear out the old to make way for the new. 11 I will make my dwelling[a] among you, and my soul shall not abhor you. 12 And I will walk among you and will be your God, and you shall be my people. 13 I am the Lordyour God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt, that you should not be their slaves. And I have broken the bars of your yoke and made you walk erect.
Punishment for Disobedience
14 “But if you will not listen to me and will not do all these commandments, 15 if you spurn my statutes, and if your soul abhors my rules, so that you will not do all my commandments, but break my covenant, 16 then I will do this to you: I will visit you with panic, with wasting disease and fever that consume the eyes and make the heart ache. And you shall sow your seed in vain, for your enemies shall eat it.17 I will set my face against you, and you shall be struck down before your enemies. Those who hate you shall rule over you, and you shall flee when none pursues you. 18 And if in spite of this you will not listen to me, then I will discipline you again sevenfold for your sins, 19 and I will break the pride of your power, and I will make your heavens like iron and your earth like bronze. 20 And your strength shall be spent in vain, for your land shall not yield its increase, and the trees of the land shall not yield their fruit.
After reading today’s text from Leviticus, my mind goes in two
different directions. One toward the peace and hope of all that is
offered with God. The other to worry. Am I following well
enough? Am I making the right choices? Worry, doubt, and fear
of retribution are an easy response to this passage.
My oldest son will tell you, though, that I say, “Find the good,”
to him a lot. It’s really meant for me as well. I find it easy to
dwell on the small details that didn’t go my way instead of
looking at what went right. The same is true here. “Find the
good.” This passage does not just contain words of warning.
There are wonderful words of hope. This text positively
encourages and motivates obedience. If you will, then I will . . .
give you plenty, give you peace, protection, power, prosperity,
provisions, my presence. It reminds me of the action song for
our kids that says, “My God is so Big, so Strong, and so Mighty.
There’s nothing my God cannot do for You.” So instead of
worry, I’m going to choose peace and trust in our God.
Heavenly Father, I thank you for all you offer to us. Let us be
reminded of your blessings and work steadfastly in your name.
Help us to see and be the good in the world right now. Keep us
focused on you and the hope you provide. In your name we pray,
Written by Liz Hearring
Interim Director of Children and Family Ministries