Happy St Patrick’s Day, and all that jazz.
I’ve been catching up on my iPlayer watching this evening, and watched a very interesting documentary called ‘Leaving Amish Paradise’ (if you’re in the UK you can watch it until it disappears next Wednesday. If you’re not in the UK, well then, I’m sorry for you, since you both cannot watch it, and are not here.)
Anyway. It’s about a couple of Amish families who have been shunned (excommunicated from their church, families and community as a whole) because they’ve started going to evangelical churches, and specifically: have started reading the whole Bible in English instead of selected passages in Old German; have put their trust in Jesus to save them, rather than following a bunch of rules about clothes and barn roofs; and have dared to claim that they know that they are saved, when to declare any kind of assurance is considered to be a terrible lack of humility.
It wasn’t an entirely positive portrayal of their change in life, but certainly very interesting to watch, and staggering to see that so many Amish folk are coming to faith in Christ, despite the significant cost that they face.
And, interesting to think that 400 years after the King James Bible was completed, these people in America are being rejected by their families for wanting to read the Bible in English, and so many people around the world are still unable to read God’s word in their own language.
Quite challenging re: my appreciation of having the Bible so readily available.
March 17th reading: Numbers 28-30
Some long lists about what to sacrifice, and some chat about oaths, and how a woman’s father or husband can nullify that oath, if he so wishes, so that she’s no longer obligated before the LORD.
The sacrifice stuff is interesting. It seems at first glance to be a very long, repetitive list about what animals are to be sacrificed when, and mentions lots of festivals, some of which I am familiar with (Passover, Day of Atonement), some of which I have heard of, but know very little about (Weeks, Tabernacle) and one which I have never heard of before (Festival of Trumpets).
The thing that strikes me is that, as well as the festivals, and the monthly offerings and the Sabbath offerings, there are daily offerings. Every single day and week you have make offerings to God, and every month, and on every festival you have to make a sin offering, as well as every other time you sin. Those offerings mean death. Every time an offering is made, every day, every week, every month, every festival, an animal dies, and often more than one animal.
Death, death and more death.
Jesus puts an end to that as well. His sacrifice is a one time thing – and he does it all.
Such a high priest truly meets our need—one who is holy, blameless, pure, set apart from sinners, exalted above the heavens. Unlike the other high priests, he does not need to offer sacrifices day after day, first for his own sins, and then for the sins of the people. He sacrificed for their sins once for all when he offered himself. Hebrews 7:26-27
And regarding the oaths section? Quite glad that in Christ there’s neither male nor female.
Anyone else got some helpful thoughts on understanding it all?