On Friday (26 June 2015) evening, I was given the opportunity to teach on the topic of God’s holiness. I consider this one of my favourite attributes of God to teach on because it gives us a glimpse into the uniqueness of God. It is also a tremendously daunting task because of the great care one must take when navigating through the holy scriptures.
The passage of scripture we looked at together was taken from Leviticus 10; the dramatic events the befell Aaron’s two son’s – Nadab and Abihu. If these passages are approached carelessly and without study great misunderstandings can arise i.e. God’s wrath can seem arbitrary. Hence the reason we started in Exodus, exploring the background to these two young men who were personally invited by the Lord God to serve Him as priests. What quickly becomes evident is that Leviticus 10 must be read in the context of the revelation, invitation and instruction that both brothers had received. They, along with the Levitical priesthood, would serve God as His priests and be responsible for standing in the gap between the people and God. However, this was short-lived and the two brothers were dramatically struck down due to their deliberate, presumptuous and careless attitude to God’s character.
God is a holy God. Yes, He loves us and calls us His friends. But we would be greatly mistaken to think that we could casually stroll into His presence do things according to what we think is right. The Gospel of John reminds us that He loves the world; Hebrews reminds us that He is a consuming fire – neither contradicting because God’s love is holy, His justice is holy, His mercy is holy. And all of this was displayed so beautifully and perfectly in the lowly person of Christ.
Let me encourage you to read Exodus and Leviticus. Furthermore, let me challenge you to pursue holiness.