As we begin our trek through the Book of Leviticus, some of you might be excited. You might only be excited to see what in the world this preacher is going to say from the Book of Leviticus; and not just one sermon, but a whole series!
Others of you might be very skeptical that we might not get much out of a book like Leviticus. You remember the last time you tried reading through the Bible and Leviticus is where you got stuck. Genesis had a lot of stories, Exodus had some law stuff but it still had this overarching narrative you could track with it. But Leviticus has a lot of codes, a ton of regulations, loads of things we don't quite understand or grasp. It’s very different, very foreign.
This is not new. Places like this in the Bible have always given people a difficult time. Gandhi once tried reading the Bible. He committed to reading the whole Bible and he said he got a couple books into the Bible and the only reason why he kept reading was because he committed to it. He's Gandhi, right? That's the only reason why he got through it. He said he really disliked large portions of the Bible, especially in the Old Testament. He particularly disliked the Book of Numbers. I can guarantee you he didn’t like Leviticus very much either.
One of my favorite commentators said he almost stopped writing his commentary on Leviticus because it is so heavy. It’s difficult and it burdened him. He wasn't sure if he could get through it, not because he doesn't like it but because of its weight. Even if you do feel like you can understand and get through the details and the minutiae of the regulations it can be weighty.
My hope in this sermon is that by getting an introduction to Leviticus ...
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Lucas O’Neill is a Clinical Associate Professor of Homiletics at Trinity Evangelical Divinity School (Deerfield, IL). He has pastored Christian Fellowship Church (Itasca, IL) for over ten years, and is the author of "Preaching to Be Heard" (Lexham Press, 2019).