READ: Leviticus 13-15
THINK: Have you ever had a bad rash? It's typically not something you like to show-except, perhaps, to your doctor. But while you may conceal such a thing, you probably don't get too worried about it. After all, any number of over-the-counter remedies can usually bring the condition under control. And mildew, you might see a little in the corner of your shower, but it's nothing that a little bathroom cleanser won't knock out. These things-though mildly irritating and inconvenient- are no big deal, so it's easy to wonder what's up with God's detailed regulations about festering sores, stubborn mildew and the like. Yet, this passage reveals something significant about God's care and protection, even in small matters. He's always looking out for our good-spiritually, physically, in every way-just as He was with the ancient Israelites. As their community wandered the desert, they would have been just as susceptible to the spread of disease as they were to the threat of destruction. But following God's law provided protection on the homefront as well as the battlefront.
RESPOND: Why were there such detailed laws regarding things like skin infections and mildew? What do these laws indicate about God's character and care? (See 13:3 note.) What could have happened if these diseases were not brought under control almost immediately? What was the real issue of uncleanness regarding these physical conditions, and what spiritual truths did these conditions remind the people of? (See 13:3 note, subpoint 1.) Why were washing and bathing so important for the Israelites? (See 15:5 note.) What was God teaching His people and how did this show His love? Why do you think that people who were "unclean" due to the physical issues described in this passage had to make sacrifices in order to be complete their cleansing? (See 13:3 note, subpoint 1.)
PRAY: Give thanks for God's constant care in the details of life. Thank Him for both physical and spiritual healing.
ACT: Consider all the modern benefits we have to guard and promote health and hygiene. As you use and encounter these things today, express gratitude to God. Also, take inventory of your life and get rid of anything that could compromise your spiritual purity in thought and action. This includes movies, video games, magazines, etc. with subject matter that gives temptation an inroad to your thoughts.
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