Is there a way that we can tie these passages together? It does seem like there may be a progression here:
- In the Exodus chapters we see God challenging Israel to obey him and obey his festivals and rules. As we continue to read through the Old Testament, we realize they never did. Can you imagine how different the world would be if we saved our enemy’s animals when they were in distress (Exodus 23:4&5)? Or let’s say no one ever shares a false report! What a blessing that would be (Exodus 23:1). But Israel did not listen to the word of God, so that leads to a further alienation from God.
- In Psalm 22, not only do people not save their enemy’s animals they spread lies about their neighbors that they should be friends with: Save, O Lord, for the godly one is gone; for the faithful have vanished from among the children of man. 2 Everyone utters lies to his neighbor; with flattering lips and a double heart they speak (Psalm 22:1&2). It seems as if Israel is moving further and further away from God. That leads to the ultimate denial of God in Luke’s Gospel.
- In Luke 23 we find the leaders of Israel demanding to murder the very God of the universe! They are acting as if there is no God.
So how do I apply this to my life? Perhaps it’s not such a serious progression against God, but as we do ignore his activity in our lives we start to not treat or relate to him as the God of the universe. I know I have become callous to my sin many times and haven’t treated the God I love with the proper respect and honor due him. And yes, perhaps by starting out obeying in the little things then it becomes easier to honor him in the greater ones.
Father God, help us not to become callous in the things you command us to do and observe. May we always be diligent in the smaller things so that when the bigger issues come our way we are ready to obey your word.