In Leviticus 10:10, God gave the same instruction concerning unclean and clean with the additional directive to distinguish between the holy and the common.
Years ago, Carol and I had the opportunity to attend Saint Andrews Chapel where R. C. Sproul was the pastor. The cover of the morning's program had a quote that stuck with me; "We cross the threshold of the secular to the sacred, from the common to the uncommon, from the profane to the Holy...". I realize this is a call to worship, a reminder of what occurs when we gather as the church of the Living God. However, it also reminds me of who God's people are and are to be, not just on Sunday but for a life time and beyond.
God's command for the Israelites to make this distinction was not merely so they would know the difference. His purpose was for His people to both know and choose those things that would set them apart for Himself. Just as the dietary law in Leviticus made the Israelites unique and distinct, obedience to God's commands makes Jesus' followers uncommon today.
Paul regularly instructs us to live our lives in a manner worthy of God’s calling. Such a life is sacred, uncommon and holy. How set apart from the secular, common and profane am I?
LORD God, just as You based Your commands to the Israelites upon their deliverance from slavery in Egypt, You base Your commands for me upon my deliverance from the slavery to sin. Thank You for saving me from destruction due to my sin. I want my life set apart for Your glory. Christ Jesus, You are the uncommon, sacred and holy One. Thank You for clothing me in Your righteousness.
Psalm 14:1 gives the biblical definition of a fool as one who "says in his heart, 'There is no God'". Paul uses the first three verses of Psalm 14 in his description of fallen mankind in Romans 3:10-18.
How startling is Proverbs 26:12? After eleven pejorative verses describing a fool, Solomon says there is more hope for a fool than for someone who is wise in their own eyes. How offensive and destructive must self-worth be? My father, after meeting someone who fit that description, would say, "I wish I could buy him for what he is worth and sell him for what he thinks he is worth". After that statement, Daddy would always get around to discussing pride.
Like my father, God's word has a lot to say about pride. 1 Samuel 2:3 equates pride with arrogance. 2 Chronicles 26:16 says pride leads to destruction and 32:25 says wrath comes because of pride. Proverbs 15:25 says the LORD tears down the house of the proud.
Proverbs 15:33, 18:12 and 22:4 says humility comes before honor. As followers of Jesus, we are to humble ourselves just as He did (Philippians 2:3-8). 1 Peter 5:5 says, "God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble".
Judge of all the earth, forgive me for being a prideful fool most of my life. Thank You for parents who were committed to Your instruction and wanted their children to follow Your ways. Jesus, as I look at Your example of humility, I must confess my attempt falls far short. Thank You for dying for a prideful fool like me.