Leviticus 19:19: “You shall keep my statutes. You shall not let your cattle breed with a different kind. You shall not sow your field with two kinds of seed, nor shall you wear a garment of cloth made of two kinds of material.
Purity can be defined as the state of a material having a single component. A material, for example the original form of metals, their ores, are impure and they need to be taken through the process of purification to separate them into their different components, to derive “pure” substances.
The focus verse is a lesson on the need for purification. God was expressing his aversion for mixtures. But don’t get carried away with the detail of the practicality of the verse, but the spiritual instruction that God wants to pass across.
Look at another similar instruction and how Paul re-interpreted it in the New Testament (1Corinthians 9:6-11, 1Timothy 5:17-18). It involved the word of God which declares in the Old Testament that the people should not muzzle the ox when it threshes the corn.
Paul asked: does God care that much for the ox? He concluded that that part of the Old Testament was put there by God not for the sake of the ox, but for the sake of the people that will be involved in the service of the Kingdom of God, ministering the word under the New Testament.
According to Paul, that old testament verse communicate that those who minister the word in the body of Christ will live off the gospel, reap material things from the (the ox eating from the corn it helps to thresh).
So rather than try to create for ourselves laws from the old testament, the recommended approach is to see how it applies under the new testament, how those words are guides and principles (and not rules) for us to understand the operations of God and the operations of his kingdom.
So back to our focus verse; don’t bother too much about reproducing the specific words of the verse into your reality as a gentile, post the-death-of-Jesus-on-the-cross, through whom the list of requirements (this verse inclusive) that were contrary to us were nailed to the cross.
Through the cross, the requirement (the compulsions, the demands) of the Old Testament, as a means of gaining the favour of God was done away with. What is left of them are the lessons, examples, principles, and dynamics for us to understand God through the words of the Old Testament (and not rules and righteousness demands for being accepted by God), hence the implication of the focus verse as it relates to purity demand of God.
Let me follow Paul and say (from the focus verse): doth God care for the animal whether they are cross-bred or not, of whether you practice mixed cropping or not, or whether you creatively combine different make and texture of a cloth together, what God is trying to communicate is the importance of purity.
Jesus was the pure lamb who was takes away the sins of the world (John 1:29). The required lamb cannot be polluted with sin, and still be acceptable. That is why, at his conception, Jesus was called the Holy thing (Luke 1:35). He was pure in his essence without the pollution of sin. Though he was hosted in the womb of Mary and derived his physical form probably from her ovum, he was without the sin nature.
Being God from eternity he was without sin (John 1:1-3, 14), and because the sin nature is only passed through the male gene, according to the bible verse which says that through one man sin entered the world and death through sin (Romans 5:12-21); it didn’t say “through the woman.” Though the woman disobeyed God first, it is plain from the evidence of the bible that she was not equipped with the capacity to transfer it.
Jesus did not have the sin nature transferred to him; therefore he didn’t have a subsisting judgment of sin on him. In that innocence, he can bear the sin of man on the cross, and the devil killing him can be unjust. And the judgment on him can effectively mean that judgment cannot be passed on believers anymore.
The focus of God is to make us pure, removing the impurity of sin in us, using Jesus Christ as his template. It is through the incorruptible seed of the word of God (Jesus) that we are born again (1Peter 1:23). That is why the bible could be very bold to declare that those who are born of God cannot sin (1John 3:9), because the seed, Christ is not corrupted.
Whatever you see in yourself other than Christ, that looks like corruption, it is the result of the sowing we have made over time to the flesh (Galatians 6:7-8). The call is to stop making any investment in the flesh, but to the spirit, so that our lives will be full reflections of the light of God, which is Jesus Christ.
Various examples are used to describe purity in the bible.
The psalmist prayed that God will give him an undivided heart so that he will fear His name (Psalm 86:11). A heart divided is a heart with multiple allegiances. Jesus said that we cannot serve God and Mammon (Matthew 6:24); we cannot be controlled by money and be controlled by God at the same time.
Since the heart is the place of passion and desire (Romans 10:1, Psalm 20:4), therefore an undivided heart from the standpoint of scriptures is about purity of passion and devotion to God.
Jesus said that we need to have our eyes single (Luke 11:34-37, Matthew 6:22-24), and then our whole body will be full of light. Your eyes are the gatekeepers of your light (understanding).
If you have eyes for only one light, the light of God, then the knowledge and understanding of God will be the fulcrum on which any other knowledge you have rotates. The light you have is the clarity of your understanding.
To be single-eyed is to run with a purity of conviction; it is to be all faith and no doubt. To be single-eyed means purity of conviction.
In describing his singleness of pursuit, Paul said: this one thing I do, forgetting the things that are behind I make deliberate advance (Philippians 3:12-14) to lay hold of why Christ has laid hold of me, to attain to the high calling of God in Christ Jesus.
That singleness of purpose that characterised Paul life caused him to labour more abundantly than his fellow apostles. It made him say, (when many were telling him he was being told not to go to Jerusalem because of the severity of the persecution that he will face) that his mind was made up. He said my mind is made up, and I even ready to die for the sake of Christ.
God wants us to be a people of one influence – the Holy Spirit. Paul wrote to the Ephesian church that they should not be filled with wine wherein in excess but they should be filled with the Holy Spirit (Ephesians 5:18).
The infilling of the Holy Spirit is a must. Just as a wine bibber cannot go for any length of time without taking a drink so also we are meant to “binge” on the Holy Spirit.
A way to do that is by speaking in tongues regularly for an extended period of time. We can also receive an infusion of the Spirit by extensive reading and study of the scriptures. The bible says that the words of the scriptures are God-breathed (2Timothy 3:16); they are inspired by the Holy Spirit. And the Spirit of God is the breath of God because the wind is a symbol of the Holy Spirit (John 3:8).
- The Old Testament As Our Story (jonahmb.wordpress.com)
- Making the First Thing the First Thing (ourdailybread101.wordpress.com)
- Christ first, Family second, Church third – Really? (hillsbiblechurch.org)
- Worship (chesedhproject.wordpress.com)
- The Apostles Tell Us How to Understand the Old Testament…But Only Indirectly (blogforthelordjesuschristianleaders.wordpress.com)
- Purity for the Glory of God (gidraf.wordpress.com)
- The Royal Law Is the Law of Christ (blogforthelordjesuschristianleaders.wordpress.com)