We need REST

Leviticus 19: 23-25: When I was little, there was a huge pumpkin patch near my house.  It was probably about 5 acres. Now if you are from the mid-west, as I have learned 5 acres is not huge. That is just a small patch. Well in mid-western PA, 5 acres is a big field.  There are hills and trees. One year the farmer was out plowing his field and I asked him if he was going to plant pumpkins or something else this year. He said nothing I am letting the field go fallow this year. We had a bumper crop last year. I asked him why he said it is in the Bible. Since we attended church regularly, I knew that if it was in the Bible, then it is a good reason. I did not stop there, I asked my mom. Of course, this is long before Google search. This is here is the book it should be somewhere in Leviticus, look it up. There were of course concordances.  A concordance is something like a dictionary, but if you find the word that you are seeking in this case fallow, then it tells you exactly where to look in the Bible. A bit more work than Google search. But I found this in Exodus, Exodus 23: 11: 11 but on the seventh year you shall let it rest and lie fallow, so that the needy of your people may eat; and whatever they leave the beast of the field may eat. You are to do the same with your vineyard and your olive grove. The passage in Leviticus does not use the word “fallow” it uses the word rest.  The passage by the way is Leviticus 25: 3-4.  Recently as I was remembering this, I remembered because one of my neighbors lets a field go fallow every year. They rotate it, but one of his fields does not have crops every year. This year it is the field behind our house. So I was thinking about the implications of letting a field go fallow, allowing it to rest. I realized it is not just our fields that need rest; we need to rest as well. Then I found this passage about the fruit trees, and remembered why I decided not to harvest the fruit from my strawberry patch. The word is in my heart, and even though I could not remember the specific verse, I knew it was important Biblically to let the fruit go.  It seems that we forget these Old Testament Commandments; we forget that Jesus said he did not come to abolish the Law, but to fulfill the Law. Matthew 5: 17-20, tells us that Jesus came to fulfill the Law and that the Law still holds true. It is the crap the Pharisees and Sadducees placed on the people, their further definition of what the Law means that Jesus wanted stopped. (Luke 11:46, Matthew 23:4)  This is where we get lost when we try to determine hidden meaning in the Law, things like What exactly did Thomas Jefferson mean when he said… then we go into his life and try to further interpret everything by his religious beliefs, based on the religion he practiced, whether he was a free mason or not. YADA Yada until we are not even sure what we are trying to interpret. And this is one of the things we do when we are reading the Bible; we try to read into what we want it to say.  The truth is the only interpretation we need comes from the Holy Spirit. If we are confused about a verse, we should pray. Bottom line, Sometimes scripture will reveal differently to us. One day, you read a verse and a point is revealed to you and then you read it again and think hey it means this.  It means both. The message is both things. The catch is the Holy Spirit reveals to us in scripture the message that we need. Today, I need to remember that it is okay to rest, I do not have to do something every second of every day, morning to night. I can rest. Not only can I rest, but also I should rest.

23 “‘When you enter the land and plant any kind of fruit tree, regard its fruit as forbidden. For three years, you are to consider it forbidden; it must not be eaten. 24 In the fourth year all its fruit will be holy, an offering of praise to the Lord. 25 But in the fifth year, you may eat its fruit. In this way, your harvest will be increased. I am the Lord your God.

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