People who say whatever they think you want to hear. You know some of those, right? I certainly do! And boy, do they ever get on my nerves. I’d rather people just be honest about what they think and feel instead of thinking that they have to try to manipulate my moods with their words... especially when they don’t mean what they’re saying.
Well, if you can resonate with that, too, then I’ve got news for you. You’re in very good company. God doesn’t like people who say whatever they think He wants to hear either.
I know this blog is about Leviticus 27, but before we get to that, let’s jump to Ecclesiastes 5:4-5. Don’t worry, it’s related: "When you make a vow to God, do not delay in fulfilling it. He has no pleasure in fools; fulfill your vow. It is better not to vow than to make a vow and not fulfill it." That’s blunt, huh? Just the way I like it!
I think Solomon was referring back to Leviticus 27 when he wrote those words. You see, the Israelites were big on promises and skimpy on follow-through. God is sort of the opposite. He’s skimpy on His promises... compared to what He actually gives us in the end! He is BIG on follow-through!
So, the Israelites were big on promises, but they often didn’t do much of anything they promised. And that’s why Leviticus ends with chapter 27. God wanted the Israelites to know that, when they promised something, it meant something to Him. You can see it from His point of view, right? What if your significant other kept promising to give you great gifts or to do wonderful things for you... but you never got a gift or a favor? What would you start to think about all those lovely-sounding words? A promise from a significant other means something to us because that person means something to us! The same is true for God.
This is such a fitting way to end the book of Leviticus. It’s just perfect — like a period at the end of a sentence. The previous 26 chapters of this book have detailed God’s instructions for and expectations of the Israelites. If there is one "mantra" that God has repeated in various ways throughout this book, it has to be this: Take Me seriously. Leviticus has a whole lot do with honor, respect, and reverence for God.
But here, right at the end, God includes this chapter on vows to say this: By the way, I take YOU seriously. So all I’m asking is that you treat Me the same way I treat you!
Don’t you just love that? God never asks us to do something that He is unwilling to do Himself! He takes us just as seriously as we should take Him. That’s because a true relationship is a two-way street. God didn’t create intelligent beings for the purpose of self-glorification. He wants the respect and admiration to flow both ways. He only wants us to make promises to Him if we want to, not because we think it’s what He wants.
To me, it’s incredible to think that the God of the Universe cares about what we say! If we make promises to Him, they’re not just meaningless words. He takes them to heart. Our words are meaningful to Him. He really does take us seriously.