Today’s reading is Zechariah 13-14, Malachi 1-4, and Psalm 150.
Today is New Year’s Eve and the last day of reading through the Bible. After 150 days (with three days skipped), I have read the Old Testament, Psalms, and New Testament while blogging on my readings each day. It feels so fitting to finish this “project” on New Year’s Eve. I am not sure what my next Bible reading plan will be, but that plan can come later.
After this 2020 year that we have had, I am yearning more and more for the day of the Lord. Not exactly the day of turbulence described in Malachi 4 where the well-fed calves trample on the wicked (Malachi 4:2-3), but I am yearning to be as a well-fed calf, frolicking.
This year more makes me yearn for the coming of the Lord described at the end of Zechariah:
On that day holy to the Lord will be inscribed on the bells of the horses, and the cooking pots in the Lord’s house will be like the sacred bowls in front of the altar. Every pot in Jerusalem and Judah will be holy to the Lord Almighty, and all who come to sacrifice will take some of the pots and cook in them. And on that day there will no longer be a Canaanite in the house of the Lord Almighty.Zechariah 14:20-21
Even though everything in Israel was supposed to be God’s, there was still a strong sacred-secular divide. The pots and utensils used in the Temple were specifically designed and dedicated to Temple use. They were not allowed to be used outside of the Temple or in household cooking. Likewise, household pots and utensils were not supposed to be used in the Temple as they had not been properly dedicated or purified for Temple use. (Another example of this was the story of Aaron’s two sons who use the strange fire in incense. Some say that part of their sin was using non-Temple approved censers.)
But after the day of the Lord, once Jesus comes and reigns on earth, this will no longer be an issue. “On that day,” these cooking pots will be like the sacred bowls used at the altar and ever pot will be holy to the Lord. Regular pots, pans, and utensils and Temple pots, pans, and utensils are the same: holy to the Lord.
Yesterday I wrote about feasting and fasting being equally important and holy to God. So can be cooking.
Once a week (pre-pandemic), my husband and I gather with a dozen other people in our house church for community dinner. We each bring a different portion of the meal, taking turns on who brings the main, sides, and dessert. Sometimes this meal feels more “holy” than the rest of the meals my husband and I eat during the week by ourselves. On the weeks where we bring the main, we spend extra time during the day making enough portions for all who will be in attendance, wanting the quantity and quality to be just perfect for those we are sharing the food with.
But what if I didn’t see this “sacred-secular” divide between meals? What if I could see all of what we make as equally holy to the Lord?
Food can be a part of showing hospitality, and while we can be hospitable to those we live with, there is something special about going above and beyond when we are bringing and giving food to those we normally do not eat with. But whether I cook for just me or for all of you, the pots I cook in are the same, and their identity of showing sacred hospitality does not change whether or not it is just me or all of you.
I love the idea that some day, when Jesus reigns, the pots and pans and utensils we use will all be the same. They will be used in holy, sacred experiences as well as in common, household.
As we enter this next year, let us not forget that we live in an already-but-not-yet Kingdom of Heaven. Those things which we will experience in the Kingdom, are things we are supposed to begin practicing today. What if we began practicing this idea of our pots and pans and utensils being holy to the Lord now. This does not mean that every meal we cook needs to take hours to prepare. But every meal we cook can be seen as sacrificial to God. We can feast and cook for the glory of God.
Happy New Year. Let us yearn for the day of the Lord and the day in which Jesus reigns on earth. Let us cook and use our pots and pans and utensils as if He already is.
Join me in finishing this year by reading through the Bible through a Psalm a Day. Find my reading plan here.
All Scripture used on Oregon Christian Girl comes from the Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Unless otherwise noted.