Scripture: Leviticus 19:26-37
Key verse: (37) You shall keep all my statutes and all my ordinances, and observe them: I am the Lord.
Reflection: What does it mean to be holy? Today’s passage comes from the Holiness Code in Leviticus, a section of the book comprised of rules and regulations. Scripture teaches us that God is holy and therefore, God’s people are called to be holy. “Holy” means to be set apart, completely and perfectly good, separate from all evil.
Some of the rules here are timeless and others appear to be contextual. “You shall not steal; you shall not deal falsely, and you shall not lie to one another” – timeless. “You shall not round off the hair on your temples or mar the edges of your beard” – contextual. Determining which rules are timeless and which are not are interpretive decisions. Faithful people have disagreed about those interpretations through the centuries.
Throughout chapter nineteen, the refrain repeats “I am the Lord.” Do not have idols: I am the Lord. Leave gleanings in the field for the poor: I am the Lord. Love your neighbor as yourself: I am the Lord. This refrain is the foundation for the mandate to be holy. Recognizing God as the Lord means acknowledging that we are not in charge of our lives. We look to God for the guidance and the standards. Our lives are oriented differently because God is the Lord. Our priorities, our opinions, and our behaviors are based on the foundation of God’s lordship. God is the Lord of your life. How will you honor the Lord today in what you do, what you say, what you think and what you give?
Prayer: You are the Lord, O God. You are the one who was, who is, and who will be. You are holy. Shape my life in the mold of your holiness. Transform me to honor you in all ways. Amen.
Author: Millie Snyder
[Scripture quotations are from New Revised Standard Version Bible, copyright © 1989 National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved].