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Wednesday, February 08, 2006

Why You Should Not Blaspheme The Name and Curse

Instructions: usually printed in three or four languages on multi-folded pieces of thin paper. The instructions you need most is the one written in the worst English. You know what I mean. Ladies, do you know why men find that slip of paper when we buy a new gadget, toy, tool, or whatever, and toss it out? Because nobody can read it, that's why! [That's for free, by the way.]

Lev 22-27: God is very clear in giving instructions. Make no mistake about it. God tells Moses how to instruct Aaron and his sons in the things prohibited of the priesthood, including which sacrifices are not to be made (in case Aaron or his sons had any questions). Once this is assured, instructions are given concerning the feasts of Unleavened Bread, First Fruits, Pentecost, Trumpets, Booths and the Day of Atonement. After Moses receives special direction concerning oil to be used for the lamps and how to arrange the showbread, an incident breaks out resulting in a law concerning the Sanctified Name of God. The book of Leviticus concludes with laws concerning the Sabbath year and the year of Jubilee, how God expects obedience and promises restoration and sanctification through vows—and most importantly, what God will and will not accept.

All instructions from God are based on a relationship. God is Holy. The priest of God is to be holy. The gifts given to God are to be holy. Everything about the society of the people of God is to be holy—and when the holiness of God is denied, there is severe punishment.

Ever heard someone curse? Of course you have. We’ve all heard God’s name being used inappropriately. We are also very familiar with the Christian retort, “Don’t take the LORD’s name in vain.” That’s actually partly correct. Check out Leviticus 24:10-16 and find out what God says should be done to the one who uses His name inappropriately. Why? Because HE is the LORD, that’s why!

Notice a couple of things: the man who got in trouble was only a half-Israelite. We would expect the most severe punishment if a Jew blasphemed The Name and cursed, but this person was half-Egyptian. God’s response was this: stone him as if he were an Israelite. The point: God has one law for any person living in covenant relationship with Him.

The other thing to notice is the persons who do the stoning are the ones who heard the man blaspheme and curse The Name. This does one of two things: prevents any false accusations—everyone must be sure they heard correctly; and, to serve as a lesson for the ones who cast the stones—don’t ever be heard doing the same thing.

Can you imagine a small child standing near her daddy.

“Daddy, why are they throwing rocks at that man?”
“Because he blasphemed The Name and cursed.”
“If I blaspheme The Name and curse will you throw rocks at me?”

Maybe instead of wide-eyed gasping and putting our hands over our mouths when we hear it, would should pick up a rock . . . Oh, that’s right, people get mad when you chuck things at them or at movie screens. It must be ok then to let it slide . . . or put the hand over the mouth that really needs it.

BE Holy BECAUSE HE is Holy. Holiness is to permeate being, enveloping all that means existence.

Be Holy Because He is Holy.

I’ll stop repeating it when I get it through my own thick skull and I don’t anticipate stopping any time soon. What about you?

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