Leviticus 19:1-2 ESV
1 Peter 1:14-16 ESV
“And the Lord spoke to Moses, saying, ‘Speak to all the congregation of the people of Israel and say to them, You shall be holy, for I the Lord your God am holy.’”
“As obedient children, do not be conformed to the passions of your former ignorance, but as he who called you is holy, you also be holy in all your conduct, since it is written, ‘You shall be holy, for I am holy.’”
Much of what was taught to God’s people in the Old Testament is repeated for us in the New Testament. Yes, as followers of Jesus, we are not under the Old Covenant liturgical, ceremonial, sacrificial and purification laws the Jews were required to follow, but we still must follow God’s moral laws.
Holiness was required then, and holiness is required now of God’s people. Only now God’s people are followers of Jesus Christ. For, in Jesus’ death on that cross he destroyed the barrier that stood between Jew and Gentile, and he made us both one via faith in Jesus Christ (Gal 3:26-29; Eph 2:14-18).
And holiness is godliness, purity, righteousness, honesty, and uprightness. And it is living lives which are separate (unlike, different) from the world because we are being made into the likeness of Christ. And holiness involves forsaking our sins and following Jesus in obedience in all our conduct.
Leviticus 19:4 ESV
Ephesians 5:5 ESV
“Do not turn to idols or make for yourselves any gods of cast metal: I am the Lord your God.”
“For you may be sure of this, that everyone who is sexually immoral or impure, or who is covetous (that is, an idolater), has no inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and God.” (cf. 1 Co 6:9-10; Gal 5:19-20; Col 3:5)
Idolatry was wrong in the Old Testament, and it is still wrong. We are not to have any other gods other than the One and Only True God – Father, Son (Jesus Christ) and Holy Spirit. Anyone who does not believe in Jesus Christ to be their Lord and Savior does not believe in the One True God.
And an idol isn’t just something made out of wood, but it can be anything in our lives which we worship above God/Jesus, that we give our hearts, devotion, passions, and desires to. It can be sexual immorality (a big one), or lying, or cheating, or entertainment, or self, or possessions, etc.
Anything that comes between us and our Lord is an idol. It can be wanting to maintain control over our own lives, wanting the approval of humans over the approval of God, being ashamed of the gospel out of fear of being rejected, or holding on to any sin which keeps us from obeying our Lord.
Leviticus 19:11 ESV
Ephesians 4:25-28 ESV
“You shall not steal; you shall not deal falsely; you shall not lie to one another.”
“Therefore, having put away falsehood, let each one of you speak the truth with his neighbor, for we are members one of another. Be angry and do not sin; do not let the sun go down on your anger, and give no opportunity to the devil. Let the thief no longer steal, but rather let him labor, doing honest work with his own hands, so that he may have something to share with anyone in need.”
The “shall nots” did not disappear under the New Covenant. If anything, the list of “shall nots” appear to have increased in number, or at least in detail of what they mean and in how they are to be applied to our lives. Like for example, Jesus said that to commit adultery is to lust after another in our minds. It isn’t just the physical act of sexual relations with another outside of marriage. It can also include the viewing of porn or R-rated movies.
God hated lies in the Old Testament, and he still hates lies. He did not change his mind about sin when we went from the Old Covenant to the New Covenant. Yes, Jesus died to forgive us our sins, but he also died that we might die with him to sin and live to him and to his righteousness.
Jesus died on that cross to free us from our bondage (slavery) to sin and to empower us to live godly and holy lives, pleasing to him. So, as followers of Jesus, we are to stop lying, and we are to tell the truth, and we are to stop taking from others what it not rightfully ours, and we are to be generous and give to others in need.
We are to put away from ourselves our old lives of living for sin and self, and we are now to walk in obedience to our Lord in righteousness and holiness.
Leviticus 19:12 ESV
Matthew 15:8-9 ESV
“You shall not swear by my name falsely, and so profane the name of your God: I am the Lord.”
“This people honors me with their lips, but their heart is far from me; in vain do they worship me, teaching as doctrines the commandments of men.” (cf. 1 Co 15:2, 58; 2 Co 6:1; Gal 3:4; Php 2:16)
We are not saved from our sins and bound for heaven on the mere profession or confession of faith in Jesus Christ. Genuine faith comes from God and thus it submits to Christ as Lord, leaves behind us our lifestyles of sin, and it walks now in obedience to our Lord and to his will for our lives.
If all we do is give lip service to the Lord, but our hearts are far from the Lord, for we are still walking in sin, doing what we want to do, holding on to sinful practices, and refusing to surrender our lives to the Lord and to walk in obedience to his commands, we do not have eternal life with God.
So, to say that Jesus is our Lord and Savior while we continue living in habitual and deliberate and premeditated sin against our Lord is to swear falsely by his name, for it is to claim him as our Lord and Savior while we do not submit to him as Lord, and while we do not leave our lives of sin behind us in order to follow our Lord in obedience to his commands.
Leviticus 19:17-18 ESV
1 John 4:20 ESV
“You shall not hate your brother in your heart, but you shall reason frankly with your neighbor, lest you incur sin because of him. You shall not take vengeance or bear a grudge against the sons of your own people, but you shall love your neighbor as yourself: I am the Lord.”
“If anyone says, ‘I love God,’ and hates his brother, he is a liar; for he who does not love his brother whom he has seen cannot love God whom he has not seen.” (cf. 1 Jn 3:15; 1 Jn 2:9-11)
We read in the New Testament, under the New Covenant, that if we hate another person, but yet we say that we love God, that we are liars. We also read that if we say we have fellowship with God, but we walk (in conduct, in practice) in darkness (sin, wickedness), that we are liars. And we read that if we say that we know God, but we don’t do what he says, we are also liars.
So, knowing God and knowing Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior, and to be saved from our sins and to be in fellowship with him, and to have the hope of eternal life with God, has conditions. We must not hate others. We must not walk in sin (in practice). And we must obey his commands.
For, the Scriptures teach that if we continue living in sin, habitually and deliberately sinning against God, and if sin is what we practice, and righteousness is not what we practice, we will not inherit eternal life with God no matter what we profess with our lips. We will die in our sins.
And they teach that we will be judged by our works (deeds). Yes, we aren’t saved by our own works done in the flesh, but we are saved to good works which God prepared for us that we should walk in them. So, if we sow to please the flesh, from the flesh we will reap destruction. But if we sow to please the Spirit, from the Spirit we will reap eternal life. Believe this!
[Lu 9:23-26; Jn 6:35-58; Jn 15:1-11; Rom 6:1-23; Rom 8:1-17; Eph 4:17-24; 1 Jn 1:5-9; 1 Jn 2:3-6; 1 Pet 2:24; 1 Co 6:9-10, 19-20; 2 Co 5:10, 15; Gal 5:16-21; Eph 5:3-6; Gal 6:7-8; Rom 2:6-8; Tit 2:11-14; 1 Jn 3:4-10; Rom 12:1-8; 1 Co 12:1-31; Eph 4:1-16; Jn 6:44; Eph 2:8-10; Heb 12:1-2]
All I Ask of You
by Andrew Lloyd Webber
No more talk of darkness,
Forget these wide-eyed fears;
I’m here, nothing can harm you,
My words will warm and calm you.
Let me be your freedom,
Let daylight dry your tears;
I’m here, with you, beside you,
To guard you and to guide you.
Let me be your shelter,
Let me be your light…
Love me, that’s all I ask of you
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