The Most Important Book: Leviticus
It may come as a surprise to discover that there are a number of Biblical experts who regard the Book of Leviticus as the most important book of the Bible! (Dr. Samuel H. Kellogg, Dr. Albert C. Dudley, J. Vernon McGee, et al.)
The Most Important Thing?
What is The Most Important Thing in the world? Holiness! True happiness begins with holiness.
“If I had my choice of all the blessings I can conceive of I would choose perfect conformity to the Lord Jesus, or, in one word, holiness.”
- Charles Spurgeon
Holiness isn’t a luxury: it’s a necessity. It’s not limited to “the Jews in ancient Israel”: Leviticus instructs New Testament Christians how to appreciate holiness and appropriate it into their everyday lives. We seem to want Jesus to solve our problems and carry our burdens, but we don’t want Him to control our lives and change our character.
But as he which hath called you is holy, so be ye holy in all manner of conversation; Because it is written, Be ye holy; for I am holy.
1 Peter 1:15, 16
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The Bible is not merely a collection of writings by scattered desert nomads who combined the worship of two different gods named El and Yahweh into one God, who scratched their faith together from a mishmash of Canaanite beliefs. Every book of the Bible, every place name and strange detail work together to describe the God of the Universe and His passion for mankind. The whole package hangs together. It’s an integrated message system from outside our time domain.
In its entirety, the collected books of the Bible work together to describe our need for a Savior. Together, they prophesy about that Savior and give us the fulfillment of those prophecies. They promise us a future where He rules and reigns over all the earth. The entire dramatic narrative is told from Genesis to Revelation, from the promise in the Garden that the seed of the woman would crush the head of the Serpent to the destruction of the Dragon, the old Serpent in Revelation. There’s nothing accidental about it; the Bible’s 66 books tell one complete story.
The word “Bible” is derived through Latin from the Greek word biblia, which is a diminutive of biblios, the word for “book” or any kind of written document. Originally it connoted something written on papyrus, but today the word “book” has become the name for the Book, the ultimate Document of all time.
The word “testament” - whether we speak of the Old Testament or the New Testament - comes from the Latin testamentum, which hails from the Greek term, diatheke, indicating a legal arrangement. When Jesus says in Matthew 26:28, “For this is my blood of the new testament, which is shed for many for the remission of sins,” he does not mean “testament” the way we think of a testimony today. Language changes over time, and the word we might choose today would be “compact” or “covenant.” While the Jews had lived for centuries under the Law, Jesus’ blood offered a new legal setup, one in which grace triumphed over legalism. Following the meaning of Jesus’ words, we might be better off today using the terms Old Contract and New Contract.
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