Focal Passage: Leviticus 26:3-16, 40-45
In recent days I have had to accept a hard truth: my children will never obey perfectly.
A few weeks ago, my son had to be put out of his soccer game twice for disobedience. This morning when I dropped him off for school, his teacher referred to him as the “wild child.”
Even I have quipped about “the preacher’s kid.”
On another occasion I disciplined my daughter for disobeying, at which point she looked up at me steely-eyed, as if to say, “bring it on old man.”
Let’s face it, as hard as we work at both formative and corrective discipline, our kids still possess a sin nature – strong-willed, defiant and rebellious.
God did not love Israel because of her inherent righteousness nor did He operate under the assumption that in showing love to her she would then be perfectly obedient. This makes the conditional nature of the covenant somewhat puzzling at first glance.
“If you walk in my statutes and keep My commandments … then I shall give you rains … But if you do not obey Me … I will appoint over you a sudden terror.”
Paul resolves this conflict of ideas in his epistle to the Romans. In 7:9-10 he states the problem. “When the commandment came, sin became alive and I died; and this commandment, which was to result in life, proved to result in death for me …”
In 8:3-4 he gives us the remedy: “For what the Law could not do, weak as it was through the flesh, God did; sending His own son in the likeness of sinful flesh and as an offering for sin, He condemned sin in the flesh, so that the requirement of the Law might be fulfilled in us …”
Christ met the conditions of the covenant on our behalf. He met the condition of perfect obedience (Leviticus 26:1-13) and He took the punishment upon Himself for utter disobedience (Leviticus 26:14-45).
Now, in Him, we no longer fear judgmental wrath, but rather we embrace His Fatherly discipline which is wrought for our good and His glory.