Confessions of a Church: Tattoos for the Dead

 The Psalm writer wrote: Open my eyes, that I may behold
Wonderful things from Your law. As we come before a Holy God and hear
his word, may we have eyes open to the wonderful and fearful things from
his law. May it move us to repent and seek forgiveness, fear disobedience,
and live in light of the grace we have received. This is the word of God. It
is eternally true and applicable for all of life.

Deuteronomy 14:1-21 “You are the sons of the Lord your God; you shall not
cut yourselves nor shave your forehead for the sake of the dead. For you
are a holy people to the Lord your God, and the Lord has chosen you to be
a people for His own possession out of all the peoples who are on the face
of the earth. “You shall not eat any detestable thing. These are the animals which you
may eat: the ox, the sheep, the goat, the deer, the gazelle, the roebuck, the
wild goat, the ibex, the antelope and the mountain sheep. Any animal that
divides the hoof and has the hoof split in two and chews the cud, among
the animals, that you may eat. Nevertheless, you are not to eat of these
among those which chew the cud, or among those that divide the hoof in
two: the camel and the rabbit and the shaphan, for though they chew the
cud, they do not divide the hoof; they are unclean for you. The pig, because
it divides the hoof but does not chew the cud, it is unclean for you. You
shall not eat any of their flesh nor touch their carcasses.
“These you may eat of all that are in water: anything that has fins and
scales you may eat, but anything that does not have fins and scales you
shall not eat; it is unclean for you. “You may eat any clean bird. But these
are the ones which you shall not eat: the eagle and the vulture and the
buzzard, and the red kite, the falcon, and the kite in their kinds, and every
raven in its kind, and the ostrich, the owl, the sea gull, and the hawk in their
kinds, the little owl, the great owl, the white owl, the pelican, the carrion
vulture, the cormorant, the stork, and the heron in their kinds, and the
hoopoe and the bat. And all the teeming life with wings are unclean to you;
they shall not be eaten. You may eat any clean bird.
“You shall not eat anything which dies of itself. You may give it to the alien
who is in your town, so that he may eat it, or you may sell it to a foreigner,
for you are a holy people to the Lord your God. You shall not boil a young
goat in its mother’s milk.

This is the word of the Lord.

God set His people in the midst of the heathen. Surrounded on all sides with nations that make a mockery of His creation in everything they do. When they observe God’s people obeying His commandments they try to duplicate it and twist it and say look at me I’m sacrificing - I’m taking Gods creation and using it for my glory. Look at me. When they lie with one another. -when they eat. -when they worship and when they dispose of their dead. These basic unavoidable events are not to be done so that we draw attention to ourselves but to be done in holy reverence. God says when you bury the dead, don’t put marks on your body so that you become the spectacle of Gods wrath and so draw attention to yourself. Leviticus 19:28 “Do not cut your bodies for the dead, and do not mark your skin with tattoos. I am the Lord.

Don’t pretend that God doesn’t care that your loved one died and you have to be the mobile shrine to make sure God doesn’t forget how much pain you went through. If you remember the prophets of Baal we’re cutting themselves because they thought he wouldn’t answer unless they invoked him through their pain. Our God never sleeps.

This call to holiness includes how you bury the dead and how you do the ceremony. People that believe in the resurrection bury the body knowing that that person is absent from it and with the Lord. Although the dietary restrictions have been lifted the call to holiness
has not been lifted. The call to be set apart from the world in every area of life is to be done in such a way that the world sees and becomes a witness that we are not like them.

During this dispensation God commands His people to be set apart right down to their basic necessities including the food they eat. While we obey 1 Corinthians 10:31 So, whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God.

We also do so understanding that we are not to be like the world when we eat or whatever we do. When we eat at the table or bury our dead we understand that God requires us to be set apart from the world who thinks that God is distant and just lets us do it the way we want to.

If you are able please kneel as we confess ours sins to a just and holy God.

Our Father in Heaven, we come to your throne guilty of stealing what belongs to you. we have taken your blessings , your law, and sought the praise of man rather than your Glory. We take our problems -come up short -miss the mark and turn ourselves into victims so that we might receive rather than give. We come up with every imaginable way to worship ourselves rather than you. You prepare a meal for us in the presence of our enemies and we think we’re the guest of honor. Please forgive us and give us hearts that love giving you glory and hate every false way.

Please stand and Listen now to the comforting assurance of the grace of God, promised in the gospel to his church:

John 15:9 Just as the Father has loved Me, I have also loved you; abide in
My love.

To all those who thus repent and seek Jesus Christ for their salvation, your sins are forgiven in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. Amen. Lift up your hearts!

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