So it is at this time that I ask the question:
Am I obeying YHVH 98% of the time?
We have chosen to follow the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. We have studied Torah to learn His ways. But is there something lacking? Did we, in our haste, leave off that 2%? Have we rationalized and made excuses to protect that 2%? Does the 2% even matter?
I think the 2% does matter to YHVH.
- Achan only took a coat, some silver, and gold. What was that among all the treasures of Jericho? Probably less than 2%, yet it cost the lives of 36 men, and Achan and his family were stoned.
- Lot's wife only looked back at Sodom for a moment, surely not a long time, but as a result she turned into a pillar of salt.
- Saul only offered one sacrifice when he shouldn't have. That's not a big deal. But it cost him the kingdom.
- David only had one moment of passion, surely less than 2% of his life, but it cost him a child.
Do we eat kosher 98% of the time? But the other 2% is ingredients on the soup can that we choose to ignore.
Do we dress appropriately 98% of the time, except when it's inconvenient or when no one will see us?
Do we keep the Feasts and Shabbat, but delay dealing with trickier commands like the niddah laws?
Do we talk about our obedience and the things we have learned and forget to help those around us? Have we forgotten the weightier matters of the law: justice, mercy, and faith?
But that's legalism!
Just a question: What is the opposite of legalism? Logic would dictate that the opposite is illegalism. So the question is whether we are obeying (legalism) or not obeying (illegalism).
The real question here is the heart. Are we busily occupied trying to take care of our 2% or are we demanding that everyone else deal with their 2%, while ignoring our own?
Torah is very clear on what is expected of us. Sometimes we don't understand, and must lean on the Ruach HaKodesh. We have so much to learn and so much to put into practice. We obey our Heavenly Father because we love Him, just like a little child delights in pleasing their daddy. We are not saved by our works, but we work because we are saved. But let us not assume that we have arrived and are doing all we ought. We have put our hand to the plow. Let us not turn back from the plow, and let us not stand still looking at the plow. We must move forward, always seeking that 2%, that bit of obedience that is yet elusive. There is always room for us to grow closer to our Father. If we are truly seeking to serve YHVH 100%, when would we possibly have time to judge others for their 2%?
May we all grow closer to YHVH in this precious feast time! (I'm off to try to deal with my own 2%.)