“The LORD spoke to Moses, saying: ‘Speak to the people of Israel and say to them: I am the LORD your God You shall not do as they do in the land of Egypt, where you lived, and you shall not do as they do in the land of Canaan, to which I am bringing you. You shall not follow their statutes. My ordinances you shall observe and my statutes you shall keep, following them: I am the LORD your God. You shall keep my statutes and my ordinances: by doing so one shall live; I am the LORD.’ … ‘Do not defile yourselves in any of these ways, for by all these practices the nations I am casting out before you have defiled themselves. Thus the land became defiled; and I punished it for its iniquity, and the land vomited out its inhabitants. But you shall keep my statutes and my ordinances and commit none of these abominations, either the citizen or the alien who resides among you (for the inhabitants of the land, who were before you, committed all these abominations, and the land became defiled); otherwise the land will vomit you out for defiling it, as it vomited out the nation that was before you. For whoever commits any of these abominations shall be cut off from their people. So keep my charge not to commit any of these abominations that were done before you, and not defile yourselves by them: I am the LORD your God.’” Leviticus 18:1-5, 24-30
God defines holiness, not the individual or popular social thoughts, trends, or mores. God defines holiness, God created life and defines the way life is to be lived. Choosing other ways, an attempt to redefine holiness, is sin. Sin robs the sinner of life, life abundant. It is interesting that these sets of verses are bookends around God’s instructions concerning improper sexual relations; as God knew that freedom to choose and our fallen condition would result in many attempts to redefine holiness. There is much in verses 6-23 that have become common place, accepted practices, by society. However, holiness, as God defined holiness, is still God’s to define. O that as we enter the Lenten season I, and all assess whose definition of holiness we live our lives in.