I’m almost done with Deuteronomy now in my now-not-so-new-looking TNIV edition, The Books of the Bible. I’m enjoying reading the Bible unencumbered by chapter and verse divisions.
One little benefit has come up now several times in my reading of the Pentateuch: I’m surprised when I finish a book! Normally chapter numbers chart my progress for me whether I want them to or not. And, let’s admit it, many of us find ourselves wondering how much longer Leviticus is going to last… With The Books of the Bible, I reached the end without ever thinking that.
I did, however, think several times that the weight of those laws and stipulations and procedures was so overwhelming as to be almost crushing. Indeed, it was a yoke that Peter admitted “that neither our fathers nor we have been able to bear.” So I wondered: what if Israel had said, “Oh, Lord, we know we cannot obey such laws unless you change us from the inside! Have mercy on us!” How might God have responded to such a plea?