"My Soul Shall Not Abhor You"
Wednesday AM Bible Study of Leviticus
February 12, 2003 - 7PM
That title is taken directly from verse 11. It may sound at first like
a back-handed complement; but it's really an amazing expression of God's
grace toward Israel. It suggests that God's covenant people should be
abhorred by Him. Leviticus is a book about God's holiness; and a sinner
could not be anything but abhorred by such a holy God. But in His grace,
He provides for the atonement of sin, pardons the sinner, and says, "My
soul shall not abhor you."
But that statement also implies that such unmerited grace should be
responded to with humility and a commitment to live holy before such a holy
God. God warned that, if Israel would be holy before Him, then (as He says
in verse 30), "My soul shall abhor you." What an appropriate chapter to
have near the end of a book about God's holiness!
Skim through this chapter. Count the number of times you see the
crucial word "if". This reminds us that the difference between God choosing
whether or not to abhor the sinner depends on what he or she does with His
grace. God places all our sins upon the cross of Jesus and fully pardons
the sinner who truly believes; but He will not be mocked, nor will He allow
His grace to be scorned by our persistance in unholiness. May God help us
to respond to His grace as we should, that we might not make ourselves the
objects of His disciplining hand.
I. THE PROMISE OF HIS BLESSINGS (VV. 1-13).
A. The description of a proper response to God's grace (1-3a).
1. Have no idols (1).
2. Keep God's sabbaths (2).
3. Reverence God's sanctuary (2).
4. Obey God's commandments (3).
B. The description of the blessings for such a response (4-13).
1. Plenty (4-5).
2. Peace (6a).
3. Protection (6b).
4. Power (7-8).
5. Prosperity (9).
6. Provision (10).
7. Privilege (11-13)*
II. THE PROMISE OF HIS JUDGMENTS (VV. 14-39).
A. The description of what it means to fail to respond properly (14-15).
1. Not obeying God (14).
2. Not observing His commandments (14).
3. Despising His statutes (15).
4. Abhorring His judgments (15).
5. Breaking His covenant (15).
B. The description of the judgments for such a response (16-39; given
in six movements).
1. God sets His face against them (16-17).
2. God makes their heavens like iron and their earth like bronze
3. God brings seven-times more plagues (21-22).
4. God walks contrary to them (23-26).
5. God's soul abhors them (27-30).
6. God takes them out of the land so that it can rest (31-39).
III. THE PROMISE OF HIS MERCY (VV. 40-46).
A. The conditions of mercy (40-41).
1. Confess their iniquity (40).
2. Confess their unfaithfulness (40).
3. Confess their contrariety (40).
4. Admit God's judgment (41).
B. God's response to these conditions (42-45).
1. He will remember His covenant with them (42, 45).
2. He will not cast them away (43-44).
*Outline suggested by W.H. Griffith Thomas, The Pentateuch (Kregel),