A still, small voice suggested that I compare my situation with a summary of Leviticus, which I had just completed studying in the context of the Cycle.
Chapters 1-7 feature the covenant of salt, a hope for the world. Israel needed repeated sacrifices for reconciliation with God. But we have Jesus, God’s Son, our “defense attorney” for acquittal by his Father, our hope in a fallen world, if only we humble ourselves.
Chapters 8-10 focus on playing with fire when we take God’s grace cheaply and lightly and then keep on sinning because we will just be forgiven again. If we choose that route, we are sure to get burned.
Chapters 11-17 reveal God’s heart. He wants us to be holy and free to obey him, because he loves us dearly as his children and promises amazing things if we exercise that freedom.
Chapters 18-23 make it clear that our obedience is critical within a culture that does things despicable to God. It is chilling how similar our current culture has become to the ancient Egyptian culture, which polluted God’s land. God intends to “vomit out” the people of such a culture, removing them from the land he owns and replacing them with his obedient children who share with the needy of the land.
Chapters 24-27 define one standard of justice and one standard of fairness, antidotes to idolatry that lead to the greatest of blessings – “no sword will pass through your land.” The life of God’s blessing is contained in giving back to God – voluntarily amid celebration, sacrifice and sharing – ten percent of everything God provides.
In Leviticus, God has revealed far more through the Cycle than just dry, detailed laws and regulations. He has shared intimately with us his never-ending love and his forgiveness, if only we will repent in all humility and enter into perfect unity with him.
And so, on the night of my firing, I prayed for a couple hours, unable to sleep, not for revenge upon those who seek to destroy me, but for humility and repentance for any role I played that might have been as despicable to God as the ancient Egyptian culture. Peace came over me instantly and I slept soundly.
Leviticus is not wooden and dead. It is the Word of God and alive with the heart of God!
As we move on to the Book of Numbers, what could be more beautiful?