- Leviticus 25:1-27:34
- Jeremiah 32:6-27, Jeremiah 16:19-17:14
- Luke 4:16-21, Galatians 5:1-13, Ephesians 2:11-19
The Torah portion this week gives us an amazing glimpse into the system of how freedom was brought to those in slavery. Every seven and fifty years the people were freed from their debts and slavery. God also had a provision for the land to rest. Freedom was placed in the fabric of the Torah so that we might take special notice of how God desires people to be in total freedom to worship him in spirit and truth.
“Then this message came to Jeremiah from the Lord: ‘I am the Lord, the God of all the peoples of the world. Is anything too hard for me?’” - Jeremiah 32:26-27
Jeremiah makes such clarity about the greatness of God. He created it all and is in it all, what could be too hard for God when it comes to matters of humanity?
The reading in Galatians is directed to those who live by the Spirit. The truth that we are still waiting for what God has promised us through Christ Jesus. We are exhorted to express our faith in love. What a challenge to seek oneness in the body of the Messiah between Jews and Gentiles. After reading Jeremiah 32:26 nothing is too hard for God.
“The scripture you’ve just heard has been fulfilled this very day!” - Luke 4:20
One of the most powerful scriptures watching Jesus fulfill the words of the Prophet Isaiah.
“The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, for he has anointed me to bring Good News to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim that captives will be released, that the blind will see, that the oppressed will be set free, and that the time of the Lord’s favor has come.” – Luke 4:18-19
Now that Jesus has come and fulfilled this passage, freedom can finally be experienced. Every moment of your life there is a choice to be free and choose life or to go back into bondage.
The heart of God is seen in such a beautiful way this week in our readings. Despite the Jew's disobedience, God will not cancel His covenant with them. God shares with us that He will remember His ancient covenant in the sight of all nations. The question remains, why would God do this after all they put Him through? God’s heart is that the Jews might recognize Him as their God in spirit and truth relationally.
We read in Jeremiah this week about those who trust in the Lord. Jeremiah 17:7-8 makes it clear. “But blessed are those who trust in the Lord and have made the Lord their hope and confidence. They are like trees planted along a riverbank, with roots that reach deep into the water. Such trees are not bothered by the heat or worried by long months of drought. Their leaves stay green, and they never stop producing fruit.”
I find this passage very personal to my life. This promise by God was given to all of us who TRUST in the Lord. Once we put our trust in Him, we need to HOPE and be confident. That means against all odds we stay rock solid.
In Ephesians, we find a passage that discusses the inclusion of the Gentiles and Jews together in oneness of Faith. I find it very refreshing to be included in God’s master plan. No longer do I have to feel like an outsider looking in. I can embrace that I am no longer an orphan or widow, but a citizen and member of God’s family.
Questions for Reflection:
▪ What is in my life that is too hard for me, but not God?
▪ Am I living by the Spirit?
▪ How is my faith expressed in love for myself and those around me?
▪ Do I believe that the Spirit of God is now in me? (Luke 4:18-19)
▪ Am I experiencing the freedom God has to offer?
▪ Whom do I put my trust in?
▪ How do I define hope and confidence?
▪ Do I understand how much God loves people to worship Him relationally?